June 17, 2009


Netherlands' two-day competition dead in the water

Martin Williamson

Cricket Europe has reported that the Netherlands’ attempts to introduce a two-day competition appear to be all but dead in the water as a result of a marked lack of enthusiasm and a problem finding suitable dates.

The announcement of matches at home to Canada in July may well be the final nail in the coffin as far as this season is concerned, and there is a growing feeling that it might not be resurrected in 2010.

“So inadequate has been the KNCB’s promotion of the proposed new competition that there were already rumours that many players were going to decline to take part anyway,” wrote Rod Lyall. “But the truth is that this experiment has not been given a fair chance, and it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the will to make it work simply did not exist.”

The Dutch board hardly helped their own project, and one of the most controversial ideas was to have compulsory declarations after 65 overs in the first innings, something critics claimed made the two-day games effectively two one-day matches.


Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

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Posted by Ricardo Johnson on (June 21, 2009, 14:26 GMT)

In response to comments made by Arun Menon and Paul. Holland MUST have a 3/4 day programme. they have no choice. all the IPL players, how long have they been playing 3 - 5 day cricket. It underpinns the players development. that is why 20twenty is so good, because you have seasoned professionals with over 10 years of experience playing the longer version of the game. the associates must set up multi day leagues or the will have no base to support the more exciting 20twenty game. set up 20twenty leagues of course, to generate income & raise profile...I agree, but don't be fooled. there must be a foundation. If these leagues are set up, they need to re-invest some of whatever profit into a a multi day league. the skills learnt in multi day cricket MAKE YOU BETTER AT 20TWENTY !!!!!!, or the very 20twenty league you have set up will die.

Posted by Paul on (June 18, 2009, 9:49 GMT)

As much as I like Test Match cricket, the First class game is all but dead in the water the world over. Crowds don't want it, TV companies dont want it, sponsors don't want it and players preffer not to play it. To feed Test cricket, it will continue in the test playing nations. However, for the associates T20 is the way to go. Build up a competetive T20 league and the crowds, Tv and money will follow. Holland and other associates should focus only on T20.

Posted by Arun Menon on (June 17, 2009, 16:43 GMT)

If cricket is to be promoted in Holland, T20 should be a focal point as it is a crowd puller and short duration with possible sponsors especially after recent success against England.Once Holland becomes a competitive T20 nation, they have a good platform for longer duration of the game.

Posted by Terry Jones on (June 17, 2009, 12:32 GMT)

With the European Union open door system between the countries of the EU, I think it would make more sense if the ECB was to expand their domestic competition from its current system to include the largest city of each Associate country in the EU.

This would allow cricket to be viewed by all countries in the EU thats at the associated level, and provide a domestic competition for all EU members. Each country could then have its on competition in addition to this, were the best players of that country would be encouraged to play for their team in the English comp.

The goal could be to have each country have a full squad of professions that are contracted, allowing ONLY that country to select those players.

Similar in other places around the world they could expand the local comp to include associate countries, including Australia & NZ to an Oceania domestic comp of 12 teams (6 Australia, 4 NZ, 1 PNG & 1 Vanuatu).

This would more professionalism in more countries in Cricket world.

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Martin Williamson
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.

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