As part of a series of articles leading up to the World Cup, Cricket Web presents a daily review on the background, players and prospects a specific competing team, starting with the minnows and building up to the favourites. Today we feature the Netherlands.
CW World Cup Countdown. Day 3 - Netherlands
26 Feb 2007
By: Michelle Hamberger
The Netherlands is one of only two countries in Europe where cricket has become a regular feature of the sporting calendar.
The ICC's desire to increase the leading Associates' exposure to international cricket led the Netherlands hosting Sri Lanka in 2006, while two years earlier Amstelveen had holsted the Videocon Cup between Australia, India and Pakistan.
There is always tension between trying to improve the standard of non-Test playing teams by exposing them to a higher standard of competition and having those teams demoralised in one-sided games.
Michael Holding was recently quite critical of Associate teams playing in the Cricket World Cup. He stated "what I believe should happen is that all the non-Test playing nations should continue to play amongst themselves, to have their own competition where only the top-ranked country goes through to the World Cup".
If Holding had his way, the Netherlands wouldn't be taking part in this competition. That would be a pity as the Netherlands are a team with a lot of good young players in need of the next level of competition which would allow them to improve their overall standard.
Drawn in a red-hot group, the Netherlands is not likely to progress past the group round. However, the Netherlands holds one World Cup record in the oldest World Cup player. Nolan Clarke played in the 1996 World Cup at the age of 47.
Leadup to the Tournament
The Netherlands came third in the recent ICC World Cricket League tournament behind Scotland and Kenya. They finished on a winning note, defeating Ireland by just six runs.
Following these performances, the Netherlands are rated second to Scotland in the ICC ODI Associate rankings.
Ryan ten Doeschate - The Netherlands top cricketer played for Essex in the County Championships winning team in 2005. At his best he is a match-winning performer.
Born in South Africa, and with Jonty Rhodes as his hero, he has played for Western Province. He is of Dutch descent, which enabled him to qualify under the European Citizenship law to play county cricket.
ten Doeschate has been one of the leading batsmen outside Test cricket in the last year, averaging over fifty in Netherlands' six ODIs in 2006 and scoring 686 runs at 228.66 in the Intercontinental Cup
In the recent World Cricket League he proved a real all rounder with 13 wickets at 15.00. He topped Netherlands' batting and bowling averages.
Because the Netherlands are drawn in such a strong group they are unlikely to progress past the group stage. Consequently, they can take the opportunity to play some attacking cricket and develop their players. Their excellent all rounder ten Doeschate is a match winner with both bat and ball.
The main weakness of the Netherlands is their lack of experience at the top level. It will be especially difficult in Group A when playing the most highly fancied teams in the competition, Australia and South Africa.
Previous World Cup Performances
1996: Group Stage
2003: Group Stage
The Netherlands has had one win in 11 games.
Predicted Finish for this World Cup 14th
The Netherlands are in Group A with number one-ranked South Africa and world champions Australia and Scotland. Consequently, it is most unlikely that they will get past the group stage.
However, their aim will be to win against the other non-Test nation in their group, Scotland.
Netherlands World Cup Squad
Luuk van Troost (captain), Adeel Raja, Peter Borren, Tim de Leede, Mark Jonkman, Alexei Kervezee, Mohammad Kashif, Darron Reekers, Edgar Schiferli, Jeroen Smits (wicketkeeper), Billy Stelling, Eric Szwarczynski, Ryan ten Doeschate, Daan van Bunge, Bas Zuiderent