Associate Cricket: European/Americas Div1 Review
Americas T20 Division 1 was a sadly predictable tournament with only a couple of games being closely fought and both Bermuda and the USA moving forward behind winners Canada. The US will be the most disappointed having failed to defeat a below-strength Canadian side. On this effort they'll be highly unlikely to challenge for the WT20 places next year.
By contrast, the European T20 Division 1 was as close as Americas was predictable. In the end, the four sides expected to progress to the semi-finals did so, with Denmark and Italy prevailing over the home sides. But the group games were close throughout, every side lost at least 1 game, and the only team who went home winless - Croatia - came within a single wicket of defeating the eventual runners-up.
Class and experience counted for a lot in the final analysis, but on this evidence European cricket is going from strength to strength. In particular, as some of the more populous nations like France and Germany increase their junior player bases this tournament wil become even more competitive, and of a higher standard.
Next step on the qualification path are the Asian T20 Championships in December. A tournament that promises much in front of passionate Nepalese crowds. Followed by the world qualifier in the new year in the UAE.
3rd August, 2011 23:34:21