|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Fantasy||Mobile|
Andre van Troost, the recently-appointed chief executive of the Netherlands board, has spoken to Cricket Europe about his vision for the future and the problems he faces in the coming year.
Aside from the obvious goal of qualifying for the 2011 World Cup, van Troost singled out the need to get more people playing a game which has seen numbers of participants falling off.
"We have to reverse the decline," he said. "We need new clubs, more clubs with youth sections and women's teams, just more players. The more players you have, the larger the pool of talent from which you'll find the future stars. But we can't do it alone, even with a full-time development officer. We need help from the clubs."
Attracting sponsors has been an issue and one that will prove more so given the global downturn. "We're a small sport, and the economy's in trouble. It's not an ideal climate to be looking for a new main sponsor. But there are some possibilities on the table, and in the meantime there are other things you can do."
Turning to criticism of the board, which has been a constant theme in recent years, van Troost argued that expectations needed to be managed. "It's a small outfit and we have to be realistic about what can be achieved."
Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and AfricaFeeds: Martin Williamson
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.