January 2010

Cricket: Canada loses T20 warm-up with Afghanistan (Eddie Norfolk) -- Posted Sunday, January 31 2010

Jan 31 at Nondescripts CC, Colombo, Sri Lanka
T20 Associates Warm-up matches:

Afghanistan 185 for five wickets (20 overs) beat Canada 96 for two wickets (12 overs) by 8 runs (Duckworth/Lewis method)
Ireland 147 for five wickets (20 overs) lost to Sri Lanka “A” 148 for seven wickets (19 overs) by three wickets

An opening partnership of 76 runs in 9.1 overs set Afghanistan en route to a useful total of 185 for five wickets against Canada in a warm-up T20 game. Karim Sadiq eventually tallied 69 from 47 balls, his opening partner, Noor Ali, making 27. Afghan captain Nowroz Managal chipped in with a brisk 30 from 13 balls and wicketkeeper Mohammad Shahzad struck 24, also from 13 balls. Khurram Chohan took two wickets for 32 runs from his four overs.

Canada replied with 96 for two wickets from 12 overs, losing by 8 runs under the Duckworth/Lewis method. Rizwan Cheema struck five sixes in a knock of 39 from 25 balls, and Ashish Bagai made 18 not out.

Chinthaka Jayasinghe, Seekkuge Prasanna and Jeewan Mendi each made 28 runs in the lower-middle order to carry Sri Lanka “A” to a two wicket win against Ireland. Andrew White topped the Irish batting with a knock of 39 and Gary Wilson made 28 not out. Kosola Kulasekara took three wickets for 33 runs from four overs.

T20 Series as build up for World Cup Twenty20 Qualifier

Afghanistan, Canada, Ireland and Sri Lanka “A” commence a four-team T20 tournament in Colombo on Monday. This event forms a key part of Canada’s preparations for the ICC World Cup Twenty20 Qualifier in the UAE from February 9 thru 13. That event sees Canada in an initial round-robin group with Kenya, the Netherlands and the UAE. Afghanistan and Ireland are initially grouped with Scotland and the USA. The aim for these eight ICC Associate countries is to qualify for the ICC World Twenty20 Championships that are being held in the West Indies from April 30th thru May 16th.

Associates need big matches - Saini (CricInfo) -- Posted Saturday, January 30 2010

Sahil Dutta
January 29, 2010
Ranjit Saini, Cricket Canada's president, has told Cricinfo the real solution to developing Associate countries was to get their sides to play against high-profile opposition.

"Sponsors want to be seen and we didn't have enough domestic TV and newspaper coverage to offer that. From our perspective, how do we get a Shahid Afridi or Sachin Tendulkar to Canada?"

In almost three years since the 2007 World Cup, Canada have only met a Full Member twice, both games coming against West Indies in August 2008.

Saini feels, given the competition with other countries as well, it's the responsibility of the ICC to ensure Associates get attractive fixtures. "Every country wants India to play, every country wants big players to play against them, but if the ICC and the Full Member nations sees value and want cricket in the smaller countries then a solution will have to be reached.

"If we don't get full member nations to play against us then we will continue to struggle."

Cricket Canada insists it will be ready to host 2012 Under-19 World Cup (CricInfo) -- Posted Thursday, January 28 2010

Sahil Dutta
January 28, 2010

With the Under-19 World Cup reaching its climax, Ranjit Saini, Cricket Canada's new president, has insisted his country will be ready to host the 2012 edition, despite concerns the country does not have the necessary 12 grounds demanded by the ICC.

In 2009 Kenya were controversially stripped of hosting rights to the 2010 Under-19 World Cup after the ICC claimed its grounds would not be ready in time. The decision caused anger in Kenya and claims the move owed more to commercial pressures than logistical ones.

At the moment Canada could face similar treatment, but Saini said that redevelopment will take place in time. "We have the necessary 12 grounds, but some need upgrading and we will be approaching the government for a grant. This will deliver the infrastructure upgrade that Canadian cricket needs. The city of Toronto has accepted it so we're confident. I think we have a good chance."

Under 19s finish World Cup with a win -- Posted Thursday, January 28 2010
ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup: January 27 at Nelson Park, Napier, New Zealand
Papua New Guinea U-19 145 all out (47.1 overs) lost to Canada U-19 146 for eight wickets (49.1 overs) by two wickets

Nitish Kumar took three wickets for 23 runs, then notched 38 runs to help Canada’s juniors beat Papua New Guinea by two wickets and seal eleventh place in the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup. PNG posted an opening stand of 65, but soon after Lega Tau was out for 24, the batting crumbled against the Canadian spin bowlers. Opening bat Heni Siaka made 50 but fell in a purple passage for Canada as PNG stumbled from 80 for one wicket to 82 for five. PNG eventually tallied 145 all out.

Canada lost both opening batsmen with just 6 runs on the board, before Usman Limbada (21 runs) and Kumar began a recovery. Six Canadians managed to reach double-figure scores, which proved sufficient, but only just. The win came with just five balls to spare as the Canadian colts reached 146 for eight wickets. Arsalan Qadir contributed an important 18 not out.

Canada had lost to PNG in the Qualifying Competition at King City, Ontario last September.

In other matches, South Africa pulled off a six wicket win against India to take fifth place. India struggled to 66 for five wickets but a knock of 98 from wicketkeeper Zahid Ali carried the side to 235 for nine wickets in 50 overs. South Africa replied with 237 for four wickets with seven balls to spare. Dominic Hendricks (63), David White (77) and Colin Ackerman (52 not out) struck most of the runs.

Bangladesh tallied 307 for eight wickets at McLean Park, Napier, then bowled out Ireland for 112 to seal ninth place and win the consolation Plate competition. Mominul Haque lead with 81, captain Mahmudul Hasan struck 52 and Sabbir Rahman 47 in the Bangladeshi innings. Ben Ackland, with 34 not out, and Graham McDonnell, 31, provided the only resistance after the Irish had stumbled to 39 for five wickets.

Eddie Norfolk
CricInfo scorecard

Canada cricket reaches for the SkyDome (CricInfo) -- Posted Tuesday, January 26 2010

Sahil Dutta
January 26, 2010

Cricket Canada has outlined ambitious plans to become a centre for staging international matches as part of a bid to raise the profile of the game, and a scheme for an indoor event features highly.

"We are working on investment in our infrastructure, money from government, and in addition we want some good international fixtures," Ranjit Saini, Cricket Canada's new president, told Cricinfo. "We want to create a unique Canadian cricket event that people can look forward to every year.

"Annually we could have an event in the SkyDome [in Toronto], trying to create a mix of entertainment and cricket, that cricket lovers throughout the world can look forward to.

"It could be a sixes tournament like Hong Kong or could be Twenty20 as well, but we want to bring in an entertainment angle to it - perhaps with audience participation in some respect - but it's very early planning so that's all I'd want to say at this stage."

Canada has a difficult task attracting international cricket, not least because of the long winters when the country is covered in snow, but Saini felt that this could work to their advantage.

"We'd want something for the coming year. There are two proposals, one for summer and one for winter. My preference is for winter, because we're covered under snow and there could be real excitement with an indoor event, recognised throughout the world as a unique fixture."

Despite the ambitious idea, Saini is yet to make approaches to potential partners. "We haven't spoken to formally to any cricket board or TV company as yet, but we had an initial meeting with some interested parties in India on January 16."

Pakistan in ICC Under-19 CWC Final (Eddie Norfolk) -- Posted Tuesday, January 26 2010
Australia or Sri Lanka will be opposition
by Eddie Norfolk

First semi-final (Jan 25): West Indies 212 for eight wickets (50 ov) lost to Pakistan 213 for 6 wickets (48.3 overs) by four wickets

Pakistan Under-19’s, thanks to Hammad Azam’s mighty innings of 92, beat West Indies by four wickets in the first semi-final of the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup. In Saturday’s final, Pakistan will meet the winners of Wednesday’s Australia-Sri Lanka semi-final.

West Indies made 212 for eight wickets in 50 overs. Opening bat Kraigg Brathwaite again showed his promise with a knock of 85, and wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich notched 41. But few of the top order batsmen made runs.

Pakistan’s innings had similar troubles until a stand of 90 between Hammad Azam and Rameez Aziz lead a recovery. This fifth wicket stand ended with Aziz’s dismissal for 39. Pakistan’s total was 139 for five wickets. Hammad found support from Waqas Khan, who made 29. The pair added 64 runs in nine overs, and Pakistan secured a place in the championship final.

Kiwi hosts take seventh place

Playoff 7th/8th places (Jan 26): England 228 for nine wickets (50 overs) lost to New Zealand 229 for eight wickets (49.4 overs)

Hosts New Zealand beat England by two wickets with two balls to spare in Tuesday’s play-off for seventh place. Jack Manuel scored 43 of England’s 228 for nine wickets (50 overs). Ben Wheeler and Tim Johnston each took three wickets. New Zealand slipped to 37 for three before a stand of 100 between captain Craig Cachopa (64) and Corey Anderson (50) began a recovery that Logan van Beek continued with an unbeaten 51.

Plate competition – Canada to battle for eleventh place.

Canada and Papua New Guinea will meet later this week in the playoff for eleventh and twelfth places. PNG lost by 168 runs to Bangladesh on Tuesday (Jan 26). Saikat Ali (61) and Noor Hosain (66) and Tasamul Haque (43) carried Bangladesh to 253 all out (49.4 overs). Hosain then showed his bowling skills, taking four wickets for 11 runs as PNG tumbled to 85 all out. Bangladesh’s win takes them into the match for ninth and tenth places against Ireland.

Rain resulted in Canada’s first two plate competition playoff games being abandoned. Canada was awarded a win over the USA, due to a better record in the group qualifying competition for the overall championship. But Ireland’s better qualifying round performances gained the Irish a win over Canada when that game was abandoned without a ball being bowled. The USA batted for just two overs before a game reduced to 23-overs a side game was beaten by the elements and abandoned.

By contrast, the young Bangladeshi’s ended up in the Plate competition with last over losses against the West Indies (by 1 run with two balls to spare) and then Pakistan (by four wickets but with just one ball to spare) in its qualifying group. Hammad Azam and Waqas Khan posted 52 runs in less than five overs to carry Pakistan to what seemed an unlikely win. And the young West Indians breathed a sigh of relief in reaching the quarterfinals.

The competitiveness gained from group play was surely a factor as Pakistan beat India, and the West Indies beat England in the quarterfinals. Few Indian and English batsmen had been needed in easy group wins over Associate opposition. The first real test came with the last group match, where England beat India by some 31 runs. The quarter-finals then saw Pakistan squeeze past India by two wickets with 3 balls to spare, and West Indies beat England by 18 runs. Both these matches had a reduced number of overs, due to rain: India-Pakistan became a 23-overs a side game, and West Indies-England was 36-overs a side. So the pressures on some of the batsmen surely increased.

South Africa won a thrilling last group match against Australia, but then crashed out in the quarter-finals. It remains to be seen if Australia, or Sri Lanka, who beat Canada, will reach the championship final. Then comes the matter of who wins the tournament. But, hopefully, all the young players involved in this tournament will have gained some experiences for life from this whole experience.

Let’s hope for some good weather and good cricket.

Previous winners of the ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup

1987-88 Australia
1997-98 England
1999-2000 India
2001-02 Australia
2003-04 Pakistan
2005-06 Pakistan
2007-08 India

Cheema interview on Canada Cricket HQ -- Posted Tuesday, January 26 2010
Take a look at the Canada Cricket HQ site for a video interview with Rizwan Cheema.
"But, now I have a new favourite player. His name is Rizwan Cheema and although the rest of the world might not know him (…yet), he is a Pakistan-born entertainer just like the above mentioned Afridi and Akram. His raw talent and ability to smash the ball all over the field have earned him the praise and respect of the international players he has played against. He also bowls some handy medium pace and has a habit of picking up timely wickets.

I caught up with him before he left for Sri Lanka to take part in the T20 4 Nation Cup before team Canada heads to the ICC T20 World Cup Qualifying tournament in Dubai next month."

Video interview

Cricket for Haiti -- Posted Tuesday, January 26 2010
The Cricket Champions League will be holding its winter league featuring 'Cricket for Haiti'.

The league tournament will run from February 20, 2010 to April 24, 2010 (Match days: Feb. 20, Feb. 27, March 6, March 27, April 3, April 10, April 17, April 24).

'Cricket for Haiti' will be played to help raise awareness and funds for the disaster relief effort in Haiti.

The tournament will be played at the North Albion Collegiate Institute featuring six Under-19 Men's Teams and two Womens Teams.

Location: North Albion Collegiate Institute, 2580 Kipling Ave, Toronto, ON M9V 3B2

To register teams, please contact haiti@cricketchampions.ca or call 416.898.7989

Canada lose to Sri Lanka A for 2nd time -- Posted Monday, January 25 2010
Canada made a valiant attempt at passing an intimidating Sri Lanka a total in their 2nd match in Sri Lanka but fell 45 runs short. The Sri Lankans totaled 290, thanks to Paranavitana's 77, and a 59 ball 67* from Maharoof. Khurram Chhoan took 3/53, and Bhatti 3/22. The Canadian reply got off to an impressive start, when they reached 42 off just 4 overs, due to Cheema's 29 from 15 balls. The middle order struggled though, and at 99/6 the match looked over. A fine 75 from Bagai, helped by 51 from Bhatti took the Canadians to 225, but both fell in the 47th over in an attempt to hit their way to victory. The final total of 245/8 was very respectable against strong opposition playing at home.

CricInfo scorecard

U19s washed out of Plate at World Cup -- Posted Monday, January 25 2010
Rain took Canada to the Plate semi final at the Under 19 world Cup, and rain also saw them eliminated. After advancing when their match against USA had been abandoned, today's match against Ireland was abandoned without a ball being bowled. Ireland thus advance to the Plate final based on standings in the first round. Canada will play for 11th place on Wednesday.

The highlight of the young Canadians tournament will thus remain their first round win over Zimbabwe, with only three matches played.

Canada lose to Sri Lanka A in opening fixture -- Posted Sunday, January 24 2010
Sri Lanka took only 32.4 overs to overtake a sub-par Canadian total of 175 in the opening match of Canada's Sri Lanka tour. No Canadian batsman made a score of consequence, with Bhatti top-scorer with 34. Bastaimpillai struggled taking 78 balls to amass 33 with a solitary boundary, and only 20 extras took the total to respectability. Canada were not bowled out but 175 off 50 overs was not an intimidating target. 74 from Rupasinghe off 72 balls with 5 fours and 4 sixes took Sri Lanka A to an easy win.
Canada play Sri Lanka A again in another 50 over match on January 25.

CricInfo scorecard

20-20 Quadrangular to be streamed live (Cricket Canada) -- Posted Saturday, January 23 2010
Canada Cricket is very pleased to announce the first ever-
live web cast streaming of Canada’s international matches.

Viewers will be able to see Canada in action at the
upcoming quadrangular T20 games in Sri Lanka. These
games are part of Canada’s preparation for the upcoming
T20 CWC Qualification Tournament in the UAE. Canada
will be competing against Afghanistan, Ireland and Sri
Lanka A.

Viewers will see top Canadian players, Bagai, Cheema, and
Chohan and the entire squad compete in Sri Lanka.

This is a very important development in the growth of
cricket in Canada and improving access of games and
cricket to fans in Canada and around the world.

February 1 – Canada vs. Ireland T20
February 2 – Canada vs. Afghanistan T20
February 4 – Canada vs. Sri Lanka ‘A’ T20

Cricket Canada will stream this event live via the Internet on
www.gocricketgocanada.com. The production will be
international quality with 6 camera views being used as well as
professional commentators. Viewers will pay a nominal fee of
$14.95 CDN to view each match. Early-bird packages will be
available at $29.95 for the series. Quantities of the packages
are limited to 200 so register now.
We are embarking on a first for associate cricket and we hope the
first of many such telecasts in the coming years. We have a busy
domestic season with visits from Ireland and Zimbabwe and we are
hoping success is this endeavor will allow us to produce more such
telecasts for our friends and supporters.

We thank you for your consideration and hope that you will be
able to support this worthwhile cause

Register now at www.gocricketgocanada.com

Canada Cricket Online comments
Congratulations to Cricket Canada on this new venture but at $14.95/ match with the games being played very early in the morning for most of Canada, one wonders what the uptake will be. Still, nothing ventured, nothing gained!

Washout sees Canada progress to plate semis (CricInfo) -- Posted Saturday, January 23 2010

Canada Under-19 qualified for the semi-finals of the Plate Championship after their quarter-final against USA Under-19 was washed out in Napier. Only three overs were possible at McLean Park and USA scored 13 before the game was abandoned. Canada progressed because of their better position in the group stage.

An aggressive half-century from Paul Stirling led Ireland Under-19 to a seven-wicket victory against Zimbabwe Under-19 in Napier, and secured their place in the semi-finals of the Plate Championship. Rain curtailed the contest to 27 overs a side at Nelson Park and Ireland chose to field after winning the toss. New-ball bowler Craig Young led a strong performance, taking 4 for 14, as Zimbabwe were dismissed for 102 with four balls left in the innings. Shane Getkate and George Dockrell took two wickets each, while Peter Moor's 28 was Zimbabwe's top score. Ireland lost an early wicket in their chase but Stirling's 65 off 50 balls, which included seven fours and a six, sealed the result for them. Andrew Balbirnie contributed an unbeaten 20 as Ireland got home in the 21st over.

Cheema hopes dashed, Cricket Canada disappointed (South Asian focus) -- Posted Friday, January 22 2010


Cricket Canada is disappointed after its hopes for Rizwan Cheema to show his batting skills in the Indian Premier League were shattered when the Canadian master-blaster was left unpicked from the Players Auction in Mumbai this week.
Cheema was the only Canadian on the list of final 51 players on the auction.

"We are very disappointed the way Cheema left out," said Ranjit Saini, President of Cricket Canada, while talking to Focus after the auction results were announced.

"He (Cheema) is one of the great twenty20 players in the world and we had high hopes for his success," said Saini.

"No idea what was going through the minds of the franchise owners. Maybe this time they were looking for better known players," Saini added**.

West Indies' Kieron Pollard (US$750,000) and Kemar Roach ($720,000), New Zealand's Shane Bond ($750,000, and South Africa's Wayne Parnell ($610,000) were the hot selling players in the auction.

None of the Pakistanis, including Shahid Afridi, Imran Nazir, Abdul Razzaq, Rana Raveed and Sohail Tanvir, won any interest either.

The auction was held for cricketers not already linked with any IPL team and was limited to the third edition.

From next year, the number of IPL teams is expected to increase from eight to 10.

The tournament will begin from March 12 to April 25. All matches will be streamed live on YouTube.

** Ranjit Saini has asked for this clarification to be added
"We have no idea as to what the IPL owners had in their minds. Perhaps they were looking for better known players. Our players have very little exposure due to lack of televised coverage of our matches. We are trying to change this by exploring new ways to provide exposure and visibility. At some point the players from associate countries need to be promoted the same as u19 players. We have no control over this and would continue to present our case and hopefully the players like Rizwan and others will find their way to high level tournaments."

List of sold players:

Kieron Pollard (WI) sold to Mumbai Indians for $750,000.

Shane Bond (NZ) sold to Kolkata Knight Riders for $750,000.

Kemar Roach (WI) sold to Deccan Chargers for $720,000.

Wayne Parnell (SA) sold to Delhi Daredevils for $610,000.

Mohammad Kaif (IND) sold to Kings XI Punjab for $250,000.

Eoin Morgan (ENG) sold to Bangalore Royal Challengers for $220,000. Damien Martyn (AUS) sold to Rajasthan Royals for $100,000.

Justin Kemp (SA) sold to Chennai Super Kings for $100,000.

Thissara Perera (SL) sold to Chennai Super Kings for $50,000.

Adam Voges (AUS) sold to Rajasthan Royals for $50,000.

Yusuf Abdulla (SA) sold to Kings XI Punjab for $50,000.

Ian Pont on cricket in Canada -- Posted Wednesday, January 20 2010
Part of Ian Pont's article for DreamCricket deals with cricket in Canada

"Canada has shown the way. I was fortunate to go to Toronto with England Under 19’s as a player in 1979 to play in what was the forerunner to the current Under 19’s world cup. We played on turf pitches at Upper Canada College and it was a delight. Canadian cricket has done the four ‘must do’s’ listed above and continued with that over this entire time. And whilst Canadian cricket rises and falls dependent on the cycle of players, they have embraced some of the ‘professionalism’ required in attitude to develop the sport on a limited budget. Canada appointed the best available national coach for their ICC 2007 World Cup (former England Under 19’s manager and friend of mine Andy Pick, who is now ICC Associates Director for the Americas) to work for 3 years at the highest level and scout for and develop players within the system. Even on smaller budgets, there was real progress made. There’s an Associates’ success story in place on the US doorstep that would be worth mimicking, or at least reviewing and adapting."

Full article

Canada U19s no match for Sri Lanka (CricInfo) -- Posted Monday, January 18 2010
Canada proved no match for Sri Lanka in Lincoln, where they were all out for 142 chasing a target of 277. Sri Lanka put up a strong total thanks to a steady stream of performances across the order and then their bowlers knocked over Canada cheaply, with Chathura Peiris taking five wickets.

Canada's decision to field meant they needed to strike early but instead they allowed partnerships to grow and pick Sri Lanka up after a wicket went down. A 52-run start was followed by the opener Udara Jayasundera (48) adding 38 with Bhanuka Rajapaksa, who top scored with 68. The middle order chipped in with small but substantial contributions and Sri Lanka's innings ended with Akshu Fernando biffing 43 from 25 balls.

Then Peiris took over. In a bowling display that bettered his efforts from Sunday, he snared three wickets inside 11 overs and then returned to send back Hiral Patel, whose 69 was the best score by some distance. No other batsman crossed 17 and only three made it to double digits. Peiris picked up his fifth by dismissing the last man for 0, bringing to close Canada's innings in the 40th over.

Pakistan stayed top of Group D with their second win, a comfortable six-wicket success over Papua New Guinea in Palmerston North. A very dominant bowling performance had PNG wrapped up for 99 in 37.3 overs and in reply Pakistan overcame a terrible start to win with 191 balls remaining.

PNG, after opting to bat, got off to a bad start. Fayyaz Butt's two wickets in the sixth over left them hurting at 17 for 2, and it only got worse as Usman Qadir spun a web with his variety of legspin. He immediately made inroads, having the opener Heni Siaka stumped for 17, and then picked off three more wickets in a teasing spell. Shahzaib Ahmed turned his arm over and netted great figures of 2 for 8 from 6.3 overs.

PNG put up a great start with the ball to give themselves some lift, but their total was never going to challenge a strong batting line-up. Raymond Haoda and Timothy Mou took out Pakistan's openers without a run on the board but couldn't strike early to dislodge the next pair. Babar Azam and the captain Azeem Ghumman rattled away a stand of 65 in quick time and when Ghumman departed for a 43-ball 40 there were only 33 needed to win. Azam finished the job with an unbeaten 40.

England also topped their group with a facile win over Afghanistan in Christchurch, their second in a row. It was another poor batting display from Afghanistan, bowled out for 126 in 47.2 overs. Nathan Buck struck thrice with the new ball to leave Afghanistan hemorrhaging at 10 for 3, after which the middle-order pair of Hashmatullah Shaidi (41 from 58 balls) and Khushal Rasooli (29 from 83) held up England for a while. But even their stand was not too last too threatening, as Azeem Rafiq and Danny Briggs, bowling a tidy right-and-left-arm spin combo, shared five wickets to check the lower middle order and the tail. Briggs was especially successful with 3 for 15 from his quota.

England's top order then went about their minimal target with confidence. Joe Root made 25 in an opening stand of 52 with Chris Dent, who stayed on to finish the game with an unbeaten 52. James Vince continued his form with 47 from 48 balls.

The day's theme of stronger sides usurping minnows continued in Queenstown, where South Africa beat USA by eight wickets. Josh Richards' decision to field proved the right one, as South Africa's bowlers dismissed USA for 163 in 49.5 overs and the chase was an easy one. Graham Hume and Dale Deeb were the main wreckers with three wickets each and the best personal score of the innings was 41 from the No. 3, Greg Sewdial. The middle order put up no fight and it needed the lower order to lift USA from 111 for 7.

The loss of two early wickets, including Richards for 8, was no hindrance for South Africa. Carried by the opener Dominic Hendricks, who made an unbeaten 75, they romped home with eight wickets in hand. The highly-rated Colin Ackermann made a cool unbeaten 64 from 71 balls, with eights four and a six.

Canada offspinner reported with illegal action (CricInfo) -- Posted Monday, January 18 2010
Canada Under-19 offspinner Riyaz Pathan has been reported for an illegal bowling action. Nadeem Ghauri and Norman Malcolm, the on-field umpires during Canada's 2010 U-19 World Cup opening game against Zimbabwe at Village Green in Christchurch, along with third umpire Sarika Prasad, reported the 19-year-old soon after the conclusion of the match. The bowler finished with 2 for 44 from his ten overs.

Pathan's bowling action will now be scrutinised under the ICC process relating to cricket other than Tests, ODIs and Twenty20 internationals. The bowler will be assessed by the Canadian board in accordance with Clause 3 of the ICC regulations, whereby it will "instigate an immediate assessment of the bowler's action by its group of advisors and arrange for the undertaking of any remedial action required by the player concerned."

The board will then be asked to report back formally to the ICC within 21 days, but if the board's assessment concludes that the bowler's action is illegal, he would be immediately suspended from bowling in international cricket.

Until the result of the Canadian board's assessment is made available, Pathan may continue to play and bowl in the tournament, but may still be called by the umpires in accordance with the laws.

Pathan became the second bowler in the tournament to be reported with a suspect bowling action after Rushan Jaleel of Sri Lanka.

Canada have been placed in Group C of the tournament along with hosts New Zealand, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka. While they edged out Zimbabwe by 10 runs, New Zealand handed them a nine-wicket thumping in their next game. Their last match is on January 18 against Sri Lanka in Lincoln.

Canada U19s lose to NZ in 2nd World Cup clash (CricInfo) -- Posted Saturday, January 16 2010
Hosts New Zealand cruised to a victory in their first match, defeating Canada by nine wickets in Lincoln. Chasing Canada's meagre total of 128 all out in 29.3 overs, New Zealand reached the target in just the 20th over for the loss of one wicket. James Neesham top scored with 47 from just 20 balls and added an unbeaten 55 with the opener Harry Boam who made 29 from 54 balls. Boam and Tom Latham, the son of former international batsman Rod, had put on 75 for the opening wicket.

Canada's effort with the bat, after they were put in, was forgettable with the No.8 Arsalan Qadir proving the most successful with 26 from 30 balls.They lost Hiral Patel earlier and then Doug Bracewell, son of former international Brendon, began with a double strike bowling his right-arm medium pace. Bracewell's figures of 3 for 31 from seven overs earned him the Man-of-the-Match award. Logan van Beek, the grandson of former West Indies and New Zealand Test wicketkeeper Sam Guillen, chipped in with three wickets as well.

England had few hassles overhauling Hong Kong's 185 on the second day of the Under-19 World Cup at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval. A dominant top-order display, led by Joe Root and James Vince, helped England chase their target in 30.1 overs. Root took the attack back to Hong Kong's bowlers during the first Powerplay, adding 57 for the first wicket and an unbeaten 129 with the Man of the Match Vince thereafter. The pair nudged, flicked and cut singles regularly to whittle away at the scoreboard. Vince finished on 76 from 61 deliveries after hitting ten fours and a six.

Hong Kong had been carried to 185 in 48.5 overs thanks to Niazkat Khan's 69-ball 65 and middle-order roles from Irfan Ahmed and Mark Chapman. But the tone for their ultimately inefficient total was set at the top, when they lost their first three wickets - all bowled - to full, swinging deliveries. David Payne was the pick of the bowlers with 3 for 24 in his nine overs.

Australia flexed their muscles over USA in Queenstown, securing a 108-run win after posting 262. USA had done well to dismiss Australia inside 50 overs, but a dramatic collapse to 28 for 7 left their chances of an upset win done and dusted. Leading the rout with a new-ball performance that would have made his father Craig proud, Alister McDermott slashed USA's top order open. After having Steven Taylor lbw in the fourth over, McDermott sent back Ryan Corns and Henry Wardley in the space of three deliveries in his next over. Fellow new-ball operator Josh Hazlewood's first-class experience with New South Wales came to the fore as he chipped in with three wickets, adding to USA's woes.

Hazlewood took two in two balls, missed the hat-trick, but snared his third wicket only a few balls later, with McDermott picking up his fourth. From a disastrous 28 for 7 in ten overs, they were boosted by Andy Mohammed's 70 from 90 balls and 30 from the No. 9 Asad Ghous. Adam Zampa picked up three wickets with his legbreak googlies.

Australia's innings had earlier been carried by a series of useful contributions. The openers Nic Maddinson (32) and Tom Beaton (73) put on 82 in 12.3 overs, after which Jason Floros (33) and Tim Armstrong (39) propped up the middle order. The wickets were shared by five of seven bowlers used.

Australia's captain Mitch Marsh said after the win: "Wins are habits so we're going to go into next game with some good confidence. I think we've still got a bit of work to do if we want to beat the better sides but to start with a good win today was great."

Bangladesh picked up a Duckworth-Lewis win by five wickets and with 112 deliveries remaining over Papua New Guinea in Palmerston North. The new-ball bowler Abul Hasan picked up four wickets, three of which dented PNG's top and middle order after they chose to bat, while the spinners kept run in check. PNG were bowled out for 191 in 46 overs. Set a D/L target of 189 in 46 overs, Bangladesh suffered a top-order wobble but the lower middle order polished off the chase. The main contributor was Shabbir Rahman, who hit an unbeaten 51 from 45 balls. His innings was sandwiched between key knocks from Mahmudul Hasan (38) and Nural Hasan (24 not out from 17 balls).

Under 19 world Cup round-up (CricInfo) -- Posted Friday, January 15 2010
Afghanistan proved no match for defending champions India, who lived up to their billing as one of the tournament's strongest sides with a facile eight-wicket win on the opening day of the Under-19 World Cup at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval. The Indian captain Ashok Menaria's decision to field was fully justified by his bowlers against a jittery Afghanistan performance marred by terrible running between the wickets. The result was a poor batting card that read 118 all out in 49.2 overs, and that target proved easy for India to chase down.

Such was the display of India's new-ball pair, Sandeep Sharma and Saurabh Netravalkar, that Maneria bowled them out with 20 overs on the trot. Sandeep Sharma, who bowled for maidens and allowed just 13 runs from ten overs, began by dismissing Zakiullah Zaki in the seventh over, but the over that did the damage was the 16th, bowled by Netravalkar. Bowling nippy left-arm medium pace, he forced Shir Shirzai and Hashmatullah Shaidi to nick catches to Harpreet Singh at slip. Afghanistan's innings never yielded any significant partnerships as Manan Sharma and Gaurav Jathar did an excellent job with their varieties of spin to strangle the lower order. Only Noor-ul-Haq, the captain, managed to pass fifty before he was ninth out.

The chase proved comfortable for India, despite the loss of Mayank Agarwal for 10. Rahul Kannaur (35) and Mandeep Singh added 58, and Maneria and Singh finished off the job. Singh finished the match with a six that also raised his half-century.

At Palmerston North, Babar Azam followed a century with two wickets from his right-arm spin to inspire a 40-run win for Pakistan over West Indies. West Indies were given a very good start to their chase, with the openers Kraigg Brathwaite and Trevon Griffith posting a century stand, but Azam's twin strikes derailed them. Griffitth, having smashed his way to a stunning 84 from 55 deliveries, was bowled by Usman Qadir, son of the Pakistan great Abdul, following which Babar struck to get rid of Evin Lewis and the captain Andre Creary for ducks. Qadir added a second, and by this time the wheels were coming off the chase. Ahmed Shehzad, who featured in the last World Cup too, didn't do much with the bat but made a big impact bowling his legspin which accounted for three wickets. West Indies folded to 257 in 46.5 overs with Brathwaite unbeaten on 92.

Earlier, Azam continued his pre-tournament form with 129 from 132 balls while opening the batting after West Indies chose to field, and his century formed the crux of Pakistan's 297 for 7. The next best score was 49 from the captain Azeem Ghumman, with whom Azam added 124 for the third wicket. Seven bowlers were used, of which only two were successful; Jomel Warrican was the best of the lot with 3 for 63.

Canada pulled off a close win over Zimbabwe at the Village Green in Christchurch, defending a target of 201 by ten runs. At 129 for 3 after 34 overs Zimbabwe appeared on course for victory but Canada stunned them by taking the last six wickets for 62 runs. Andrew Lindsay's dismissal for 40 to the slow left-arm spin of Hiral Patel, who has played two ODIs for the senior side, was followed by the big wicket of Dean Mazhawidza, whose 75 had been a stand-out effort in an otherwise disappointing scorecard. Zain Mahmood, the new-ball bowler, returned to sniff out two wickets as Canada got their tournament campaign off to a winning start. Their innings had been carried to 210 by Usman Limbada, who made 90 from 114 balls against a disciplined Zimbabwean attack. Mazhawidza took four catches behind the stumps.

South Africa knocked down a target of 217 without too much fuss against Ireland in Queenstown. Ireland's Ben Ackland and Lee Nelson posted half-centuries to bail the side out after the top order collapsed to 36 for 4, adding 117. The next pair hacked up 45 in 4.2 overs to get Ireland to 216 for 6, but that was nowhere near enough for a strong South African side. An early jolt by Stuart Thompson with the new ball did little to deter their spirits, and the chase was put on its legs by Dominic Hendricks (47 from 49 balls) and Stephan Smith, who remained not out on 67 as the target was knocked down in the 44th over.

Bermuda to host Americas regional cricket championship (Bermuda Sun) -- Posted Thursday, January 14 2010

Bermuda will be hosting the ICC Americas Regional Division 1 Championship this May and June. Bermuda last hosted this event in 2004 when it placed third behind Canada and the U.S.

The Championship is scheduled to take place May 29 to June 7. Bermuda, U.S., Canada, Cayman Islands, Argentina and the winner of the ICC Americas Division 2 will compete in an eight-day tournament. Games will be held at the National Sports Centre and at local clubs across the island.

Reginald Pearman, president of the Bermuda Cricket Board, said: "The BCB is delighted to secure the rights to host the ICC Americas Regional Division 1 Championship once again. We are still finalizing the logistics with our local providers and hope that the event can be delivered within the budget constraints set. This will be an excellent opportunity for Bermudians to come out to support their team at home."

Cheema eyes IPL stardom (South Asia Focus) -- Posted Thursday, January 14 2010


Canada's own master-blaster Rizwan Cheema has been short-listed for cricket's prestigious - and potentially lucrative - Indian Premier League (IPL) players' auction.
After putting behind the challenges and adversities 2009 posed them, Cricket Canada now seems to have taken off to a jubilant start this year.

Cheema is the only Canadian on the list of the final 51 players on the auction that is scheduled for Jan 19.

Some eight franchises (teams) in IPL have a mere 17 vacant positions to be filled from those 51 players.

Ranjit Saini, president of Cricket Canada, told Focus Cheema is one of the finest players in today's twenty20 cricket world and has bright chances of being picked.

When contacted, Cheema said: "I am very excited at the nomination, but need your prayers as well as the good wishes of the community, fellow citizens and all cricket fans."

Born and raised in Karachi, the 32-year-old Cheema, who also plays for Toronto and District Cricket Association as well as Popeyes Cricket Club, made his international debut in 2008 and, in just his second appearance, hit 89 off 61 deliveries against the West Indies; and two days later he was at it again, hammering 61 off 45 balls against the same team.

"I am well prepared to show my typical batting talent to bring good name for Canada in the international arena," said Canada's most exciting batting sensation.

In December Cricket Canada sent two entries - Khurram Chohan was the other - for the third edition of IPL. From the total 100 entries, 60 players were shortlisted for the auction, and it was during this phase that Chohan lost out. The remaining nine cricketers, all from England, are still awaiting NOCs from the England and Wales Cricket Board and their participation seems not possible at this stage.

Saini said the exclusion of English players has further increased Cheema's chances, and his selection will be wonderful news for all Canadians and cricket lovers.

"Personally, I am so happy that I can't express my feelings. The moment I heard about the news (just after being awoken at 6am), I jumped out of bed in excitement," said Saini.

He admitted 2009 was full of surprises and not a good year for Cricket Canada, but hoped 2010 will be a better one.

In December, Saini was on a three-week tour to India, Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates (which is ICC's headquarters) and the West Indies to promote cricketing ties with ICC's full member countries.

The IPL teams are: Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Deccan Chargers, Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Daredevils, Kings XI Punjab, Kolkata Knight Riders and Rajasthan Royals.

Following are the players currently in the IPL Players' Auction:

- Australia: Doug Bollinger, Brad Haddin, Ashley Noffke, Jason Krejza, Ben Laughlin, Graham Manou, Damien Martyn, Clint McKay, Peter Siddle, Adam Voges, Phillip Hughes.

- South Africa: Yusuf Abdulla, Zander de Bruyn, Justin Kemp, Rory Kleinveldt, Wayne Parnell, Vernon Philander, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Johan van der Wath, Vaughn van Jaarsveld.

- Sri Lanka: Thilina Kandamby, Nuwan Kulasekera, Thisara Perera, Chamara Silva, Upul Tharanga, Kaushalya Weeraratne, Chanaka Welegedara, Nuwan Zoysa.

- West Indies: Sulieman Benn, Daren Ganga, Darren Bravo, Wavell Hinds, Kieron Pollard, Lendl Simmons, Kemar Roach, Ramnaresh Sarwan.

- Pakistan: Mohammad Aamer, Shahid Afridi, Saeed Ajmal, Umar Akmal, Rana Naved Ul Hasan, Imran Nazir, Abdul Razzaq.

- New Zealand: Shane Bond, Grant Elliot, Nathan McCullum, Lou Vincent.

- Bangladesh: Shakib Al Hasan

- Canada: Rizwan Cheema.

- Zimbabwe: Murray Goodwin.

- Holland: Ryan ten Doeschate.

Limbada leads Under 19s to win over Zimbabwe in World Cup opener -- Posted Thursday, January 14 2010
The Canadian Under 19 squad openedtheir World Cup campaign with a brilliant win over Zimbabwe in Christchurch, New Zealand. An excellent innings of 90 from Usman Limbada allowed Canada to post 201 from their 50 overs and three wickets from Zain Mahmood took Canada to a 10 run win. This victory over a strong side from a Test playing nation represents a milestone for Canadian cricket.

Canada chose to bat after winning the toss and after 10 overs were 50/0. Both openers fell in rapid succession, Gunasekera for 20, and Patel for 29. Bhatti was out shortly afterwards and Canada had lost three wickets for just 7 runs. The run rate slowed as Waller bowled an impressive spell taking 2 wickets for 8 runs in seven overs. Kumar made 9 from 28 balls, and Canada are 90/4 after 29 overs. Limbada took over with a well paced innings, making 90 from 114 balls, with seven boundaries. He helped take the total to 188 before being dismissed, and Canada will be pleased with the final total of 201.

When Zimbabwe started their reply, Limbada made the initial breakthrough, with a runout with the score on 15,and the 2nd wicket fell without further addition as Zain Mahmood had Moor lbw. when the third wicket fell on 19, canada seemed on course for victory. However Mazhawidza (75) and Lindsay (40) put on 110 for the fifth wicket, and at 129/4 with 16 overs to go, the pendulum had swung the other way. Zain Mahmood caught Lindsay off Patel to break the partnership, and as wickets fell the run rate climbed. The final wicket fell in the last over with Zimbabwe 10 runs short.

Canada's next match is against the hosts, New Zealand, on january 16.

CricInfo scorecard
ICC scorecard

Canadian cricket author needed for children's books -- Posted Wednesday, January 13 2010
James Lorimer & Company Ltd., a Toronto based book publisher have developed a sports based series for children and young adults, featuring a wide variety of "Canadian" sports. Interestingly, they have recently had a number of requests from school librarians for books in the series featuring cricket. This is a reflection of the growth and interest of the sport at grass-roots level in our schools.

Consequently, they are seeking authors interested in developing titles for the series. Any aspiring Canadian cricket author should contact Carrie Gleason (YA and Children's Book Editor) at childrenseditor@lorimer.ca.

Existing titles in the series can be seen here

Canada lose to Hong Kong U19s in final warm-up -- Posted Tuesday, January 12 2010
The Canadian under 19s suffered a disappointing loss to Hong Kong in their final warm-up match in Rangiora, New Zealand.

Canada batted first in a match reduced to 40 overs/ side. Bhatti made 64, and Kumar 52. Their partnership of 100 occupied nearly 20 overs, and Canada mustered 189/8.

In replay, consistent socring from the Hong kong bats allowed them to overtake the Canadian total with 2.4 overs and four wickets to spare. Canada again used 8 bowlers, with Aulakh taking two wickets, and Patel bowling well conceding just 22 runs from 8 overs.

Canada open the tournament proper against Zimbabwe on Friday

CricInfo scorecard

U19s lose by 93 runs to South Africa in warm-up -- Posted Monday, January 11 2010
The Canadian under 19s had a taste of what is going to face them in the tournament proper when they played South Africa U19s in a warm-up match in the lovely New Zealand city of Christchurch.

The South Africans batted first, and with all of their first six batsmen passing 30, posted a total of 247 from their 50 overs. 8 Canadians bowled, with Desai taking 2/40, and d'Souuza with identical figures only from four less overs.

Canada got off to a poor start - in contrast to South Africa, only one of the top six reached double-figures (Bhatti) and then only by 1 run. They were at one point 37/6, but a patient 55 from Hamza Tarique, helped by 30 from Asif Manjra saved embarrassment. They made no attempt to keep up with the run-rate, and after 50 overs the Canadians had made 154/9.

The result however was inconsequential, and this was a good opportunity to play in match conditions against a powerful opponent. They face Hong Kong tomorrow before opening the tournament proper against Zimbabwe on friday

CricInfo scorecard

Cricket Canada release 20-20 squad via youTube -- Posted Sunday, January 10 2010
Cricket Canada took the unusual step of releasing the squad for the upcoming 20-20 qualifier via Youtube, with an entertaining video of clips of Canada's players in action. This is perhaps the first release of this nature and is an innovative example of Cricket Canada's wish to embrace new media methods of getting their message across.

The squad itself has a good blend of experience and youth, and features the return of John Davison to the team.

Shillingford was first Dominican to play for West Indies (Share) -- Posted Sunday, January 10 2010


The first Dominican to play Test cricket for the West Indies is dead.

Grayson Shillingford, who resided in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) for 24 years after retiring from first-class cricket in 1979, passed away in Dominica two days before Christmas. He succumbed to kidney failure that resulted from a rare blood disorder disease he was diagnosed with almost two years ago.

Shillingford, who was 65 at the time of his death, was buried on December 31.

The right-arm fast bowler, who made his first-class debut against the Marylebone Cricket Club in 1968, was all set to move to Canada a year later when former Trinidad & Tobago and West Indies all-rounder and selector Gerry Gomez successfully persuaded him to put his migration plan on hold.

Five months after Gomez saw the young fast bowler make his regional debut against T & T at the Queen's Park Oval where he took just one wicket for 77 runs off 29 overs in the Windward Islands innings and 57-run loss, Shillingford made history by becoming the first cricketer from his island to represent the West Indies when he was selected for the second Test against England at Lords.

Shillingford played seven Tests (five drawn and two losses under Sir Garfield Sobers' captaincy) between 1969 and 1972 and helped Dominica win four straight Windward Island tournaments in the late 1970s before migrating to Canada nearly three decades ago.

"Grayson was a very likeable and jovial person," said St. Lucian-born former Canadian wicketkeeper/batsman and coach, Bryan Mauricette, who played in Shillingford's first regional game for the Windwards.

They reunited in the early 1980s as teammates with Toronto & District Cricket Association club Victoria Park.

"He was also very competitive and an extremely good teammate who added value to a side," said Mauricette.

Shillingford, who also represented the Combined Islands, lived in the same Scarborough apartment building for several years with ex-Jamaica and West Indies fast bowler Tom Dewdney, who was stunned by his death.

"I am totally shocked," was Dewdney's response when Share informed him of Shillingford's death. "I did not even know that he was sick...We used to get together and reminisce about the game and old times over a few drinks in my apartment. Grayson was knowledgeable about the game and he was a very decent person."

Dewdney and Shillingford traveled together to Jamaica in 1996 for the West Indies Cricket Board commemorative banquet to honour the players who had represented the region in Test cricket.

International Cricket Council (ICC) Americas Region manager, Martin Vieira, also played with Shillingford at Victoria Park.

"The thing that stood out about Grayson was that he was always willing to help the young players," said Vieira. "He was obviously very talented and he could always be called upon to work with the club's youths."

Former teammate Des Gouveia concurred.

"Grayson was good with the kids and he spent a lot of time with the juniors," Gouveia said.

A graduate of Dominica Grammar School, Shillingford was introduced to cricket by his cousin Irvine Shillingford in 1967 who asked him to bowl on the concrete wicket they constructed at Grayson's Macoucherie Estate home.

"Grayson bowled leg breaks and I encouraged him to bowl fast to get me out," recalled Irvine, a gifted right-handed batsman who played four Tests for the West Indies. "We practiced everyday."

Shillingford, who was also a useful lower order left-handed batsman, made his first appearance for Dominica in 1967 before his surprise West Indies selection two years later.

"The West Indies dropped Wes Hall, Charlie Griffith, Lester King and Richard Edwards after disappointing tours to Australia and New Zealand in 1968-69 and were in the process of rebuilding during a difficult period," recounted West Indies cricket journalist, Tony Cozier. "Grayson had a long and bounding run and he was a bit sharp with a good outswinger. He was also full of fun and always looking for a good joke."

Shillingford yorked former England wicketkeeper/batsman Alan Knott for his first Test wicket and ended the series as the leading West Indies wicket-taker with 36 (av. 18.58) despite a torn muscle that sidelined him for a month during the tour.

One of the highlights of the tour was when the Queen, accompanied by Prince Philip and Prince Charles, met the officials and players of both teams who were presented to her in front of the pavilion after lunch in Shillingford's first Test.

The photo was one of his few prized possessions.

"Grayson never made a big fuss of what he did before coming to Canada," said Ned Blair who worked with Shillingford at Steelcase Canada in Markham for several years. "While on a visit to the factory one day, the president of Steelcase North America was introduced to Grayson and he was blown away when he learned that one of the company's employees played international cricket and when Grayson produced a West Indies team picture with him shaking the Queen's hand."

Blair said he spoke with Shillingford, who left Steelcase in 2004 and returned to Dominica with a fishing boat to enjoy his retirement, by phone two days before his death.

In the second Test of India's 1971 tour to the Caribbean at the Queen's Park Oval, Shillingford bowled opener Ashok Mankad, who died in August 2008, in the visitors first innings before the late T & T off-spinner Jack Noreiga proceeded to become the first and only West Indian to take nine wickets in a Test innings.

As Noreiga led the team off the field after his record-breaking performance, Shillingford turned to him and said, "Don't get no horrors Jack, but we walking in together because we wrecked them."

In the next contest at Bourda, Sobers - fielding at second slip - dropped Sunil Gavaskar, playing in his second Test, off Shillingford when the batsman was on six. Gavaskar, who was let off again at 37, went on to register the first of his 34 Test centuries.

Shillingford claimed Gavaskar's wicket a month later when he bowled the opener for 12 in the second innings of the Indians' drawn contest against the Windward Islands in Dominica.

He played his last Test in 1972 against New Zealand in Barbados, finishing with 15 wickets (35.80). Overall, he took 217 wickets (av. 26.54) in 81 first-class matches.

A supporter of the 40-year-old Commonwealth of Dominica Ontario Association and a Canadian team coach at the International Cricket Conference Trophy tournament in England in 1986, Shillingford spent almost seven months last year in the GTA undergoing treatment before his son, Grayson Jr., took him back home about six weeks ago.

"I will remember my dad as a really great person who treated everyone with respect and dignity," said the younger Shillingford, a York Regional police officer and former Canadian Football League (CFL) wide receiver who was on the National Football League (NFL) Seattle Seahawks practice roster in 1996-97. "I never met anyone who had anything negative to say about him."

Shillingford, who captained Dominica in the Windward Islands tournament in 1978 and played for Thornaby in England's Yorkshire league the following year, was awarded Dominica's second highest national honour - the Sisserou - during celebrations to mark the island's 31st independence anniversary last November.

In addition to Grayson Jr. who celebrated his 35th birthday last Christmas Day, Shillingford - who was never married - is survived by daughters Sasha, who lives in Virginia; Nadine, who lives in Houston; and Nicaise, who makes her home in Whitby.

Canada’s youth team preparing for World Cup (Share news) -- Posted Sunday, January 10 2010


Canada's national youth cricketers are set for the upcoming youth cricket World Cup in New Zealand after taking part in a rigorous 10-day training camp in St. Kitts.

The 17-member squad, which returned home on December 21, played two limited-overs matches against the West Indies youth side - one game was ruined by rain while the Caribbean side won the other - and a 50-overs contest against a St. Kitts Under-23 side that Canada clinched by 139 runs. The matches were played at Warner Park.

Half-centuries by Rustam Bhatti (81), Hiral Patel (61) and Usman Limbada (55 not out) propelled Canada to a 300-6 in 50 overs. Patel completed a fine all-round performance, taking four wickets while Parth Desai claimed five to limit the home team to 161.

"I am very happy with the way things went during the camp," said coach Wilbert Plummer. "The facilities were excellent and the island's Ministry of Sport was very supportive."

British-based fielding coach Julien Fountain, a former English baseball player who has worked part-time with the West Indies, Pakistan and England, accompanied the team.

"You could see an improvement in the team's fielding as the camp progressed," said Plummer. "The catching got better and the lads were moving quicker to the ball that resulted in a few run-outs...Overall, the trip was very productive and I expect our boys to be competitive in the upcoming international tournament."

The 15-member national squad leaves here on January 2 for the International Cricket Council (ICC) Under-19 World Cup in New Zealand. The squad will play practice matches on January 8 in Auckland before traveling to Christchurch to meet South Africa on January 11 and Hong Kong a day later in warm-up games.

Canada begins play in the Under-19 World Cup tournament on January 15 against Zimbabwe. The team will then meet host country New Zealand a day later and Sri Lanka on January 18.

A total of 16 teams will take part in the two week tournament.

Canada head for Sri Lanka (CricInfo) -- Posted Saturday, January 9 2010
The Canadian national squad head for Sri Lanka today for almost three weeks of preparations ahead of the ICC World Cup Twenty20 Qualifier, and their time there includes a short Twenty20 series involving Afghanistan and Ireland. After the T20 Qualifiers they remain in the UAE where they again meet Afghanistan, this time in two ODIs, followed by an Intercontinental Cup tie.

They are scheduled to be in Jamaica on early April to play an ODI and T20 game against West Indies. In May, they take part in the Americas Division One competition in Bermuda.

As with all sides in the T20 Qualifiers, if they make it through to the main tournament they will be in the USA at a training camp from April 18 to 23 with the event in the Caribbean following on.

Loss for Canada U19s in final unofficial warm-up (CricInfo) -- Posted Friday, January 8 2010

Cricinfo staff
January 8, 2010

Auckland XI made 171 for 6 in a match reduced to 33 overs-a-side by rain. Canada struggled to keep on top of a stiff asking rate and finished on 148 for 7, although a fifty from Ruvindu Gunasekara gave them some cause for optimism.

USA's preparations for the ICC Under-19 World Cup came unstuck as they were beaten by Hong Kong in a warm-up match. Afgahnistan, who beat Hong Kong earlier in the week, lost to a Canterbury A team, while Canada lost to an Auckland XI.

USA only managed 182 for 9 after they chose to bat, their efforts not aided by three run outs. Hong Kong raced to 186 for 4 in 32.2 overs with captain Jamie Atkinson blasting 100 off 86 deliveries. He added 156 at almost a run-a-ball with Ashish Gadhia (59).

Afghanistan went down to a five-wicket loss to Canterbury A, being bowled out for 169 after a promising start. Canterbury eased to victory in 32.2 overs, opener Kereyn Ambler leading the way with 70 off 77 balls.

This was the last round of unofficial warm-ups as the teams all head to Christchurch for the tournament's official opening on Sunday. Two days of official warm-ups follow before the first batch of proper games on Friday, January 15.

Big brothers' indifference hurts the little guys - CricInfo review of Associates cricket -- Posted Sunday, January 3 2010

Little help from those at the top, even less from sponsors, and the ICC's bizarre decisions have left most of the Associates looking at a bleak 2010
Martin Williamson
January 3, 2010

The year was not a particularly good one for Associates, and ended with little reason for them to look ahead with much optimism. For all the promising rhetoric from those running the game, as well as substantial increases in central funding, actions speak louder than words. This year, yet again the best of the rest were left to scramble for the few crumbs that fell from the ICC's top table.

The biggest concern remains the overall reluctance of the bigger countries to take time out of their increasingly busy schedules to play against the Associates. It is widely agreed the best way for the likes of Kenya and Ireland to bridge the chasm between them and the top eight Full Members is to play top-quality cricket. In 2009 only England and Australia played against any of the Associates, and even then it was only once each. Kenya managed 10 matches against Zimbabwe, who are themselves desperate for a better class of opponent. The gulf in ability was brought home when Zimbabwe won the lot.

Perhaps the most depressing revelation came at the year-end when it emerged South Africa demanded almost $100,000 from Kenya to even consider putting out a side against them. That sum would have represented about 15% of Kenya's entire annual income. It served to underline that talk is one thing, actually helping quite another.

The explosion of Twenty20 in the guise of the IPL, Champions League, and no end of major boards looking to milk the cash cow is only likely to make arranging matches even less likely. However, it is Twenty20 that might yet be the best hope for the Associates. The shortening of the game actually reduces the differences in ability and gives smaller countries a chance to bloody a nose or two. Those of us who were fortunate enough to watch Netherlands humble England at Lord's on the damp opening day of the ICC World Twenty20 will not forget the scenes of celebration that went on long into the June night. Perhaps it is in that format that their real future lies.

The World Cup Qualifiers in South Africa in April were the high point of the Associate calendar and they attracted the attention of even the non-cricketing media when Afghanistan secured ODI status and came within a whisker of making it to the 2011 World Cup. It was the conclusion of a remarkable story. They had reached South Africa after a succession of promotions up the ICC's commendable World Cricket League. Twenty years ago the game was unknown in the country but it was taught to refugees in camps in Pakistan, who took it back home with them when the Taliban regime was ousted.

Afghanistan replaced Bermuda, ending the latter's four-year flirtation with ODI status, which started full of promise but rapidly descended into infighting and repeated on-field embarrassment. The worry is whether Afghanistan's progress has already reached its ceiling. The introduction of funding for a niche sport, in a country whose politics brushes shoulders with greed so readily, leaves the ICC in a difficult position. Professionalisation is the board's priority for Associates - a lofty ambition for more established nations, let alone poor Afghanistan. Scotland, too, looked a shadow of the side they should have been, missing out on a World Cup place and only just managing to keep their ODI status.

The first-class Intercontinental Cup rumbled on, an essentially good tournament that seems to have rather lost its way, though the players continue to respect the importance of exposure to four-day cricket. It was bolstered by the inclusion of Zimbabwe, a move to help them prepare for their own return to Test cricket, but that came at a cost. Namibia, runners-up in 2008, were unceremoniously booted out to make way for them, a decision bizarrely based on their one-day form.

If that reflected badly on the ICC, then what followed was even worse. It was decided to add an extra team to the World Twenty20 Qualifiers in early 2010. The obvious candidates were Namibia, the highest-placed finishers in South Africa, but instead the ICC fast-tracked USA, a team in international isolation for several years as a result of their dysfunctional board. The decision reeked of putting commercial ambition ahead of what was right.

The USA Cricket Association's new chief executive, Don Lockerbie, outlined ambitious plans for high-profile international matches in the States, an IPL-style tournament and professionalisation of the game within a few years. It was enough to have the ICC's commercial department licking its lips, but to date, there has been little evidence of progress.

The cricketing colonisation of another vast untapped market, China, remained a goal of administrators. To hear some of them talk, it might have seemed the country was within a few years of becoming a cricketing superpower. The on-field evidence remained uncompelling.

Afghanistan were the story of the year © International Cricket Council
There was the almost customary internal bickering within the Associates. Canada and Netherlands both got through a middle order of chief executives, while the image of Kenya as a haven for corruption resurfaced when its CEO, Tom Tikolo, was forced to quit after he was found to have mislaid funds. Sponsors too tightened their belts. Both Scotland and Canada lost their chief backers; Canada, damagingly, less than a year into a three-year deal after Scotiabank flagged concerns with the value of the contract.

Ireland continued to plough an ambitious furrow under their young and charismatic CEO, Warren Deutrom. Despite losing more players to England, their increased professionalism marks them out as Associate cricket's showcase side. They comfortably won the World Cup Qualifiers in South Africa, and outlined plans to apply for Test status later in the year.

They also came within three runs of dumping their rather sniffy neighbours on their backsides in an ODI in Dublin. Perhaps the risk of humiliation is the real reason the big boys steer clear of the Associates.