Reigning ICC Intercontinental Cup champions Afghanistan takes on hosts Canada in the third match of the new season starting tomorrow (Tuesday 2 August 2011) in Toronto.

Afghanistan won the final of the competition last year after beating Scotland and the side will be hoping for a strong performance away from home to begin the competition on the right foot and walk away with full points.

Having never won the tournament, Canada will want to make sure it starts positively and begin this year?s season with a victory on home soil.

Afghanistan fast bowler Hamid Hassan, who was the leading wicket-taker in the last tournament with 43 scalps, is confident ahead of the team?s first four-day fixture of the season.

?We?ve played some domestic three-day games in Pakistan and also in Sri Lanka ahead of this first fixture and we?ve been very focused so I hope we take what we?ve learnt with us to Canada for our first match of this competition.

?When we first started playing four-day cricket it took us time to embrace it but now we enjoy it a lot, especially in the last tournament, so hopefully we can enjoy it again this time.

?I?ve never been Canada but we?ve been told the weather will be good and hopefully the wickets will seam around so I?m able to be effective with the ball,? concluded Hamid.

Meanwhile, Canada?s side features some young blood, joining the old guard, with new captain Jimmy Hansra at the helm, who has taken over from fellow squad member Ashish Bagai, who recently relinquished the captaincy that he had held for two years.

The team features a number of young players, including Hiral Patel, while newly appointed skipper Hansra is confident his side can do well: ?We?re a fairly young team and we?re going to be taking what we learnt at the 50-over ICC Cricket World Cup and try to translate that into the four-day competition we?re about to start playing.

?It?s good that we?ve got a three year window for this tournament and it?s good for us to start against the current champions, Afghanistan.

?It?s nice to have a stronger team upfront as it will help us know where we stand and it should help us to prepare for the tournament and the youngsters are ready to go and we?re ready to put up a good show.

?Hiral Patel and Ruvindu Gunasekera are two good youngsters coming in from our domestic cricket, who also featured at the World Cup, and we?ve good bowlers who will need to help us for this tournament.

?Afghanistan is an experienced side whereas we?re young and we?re trying to bring the passion for Canada and cricket together for this tournament but I feel with a three-year window to play these fixtures we will continue to improve no matter what happens with this first game,? added Hansra.

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2011 has become a watershed year for Canadian cricket in terms of turf wickets. Cricket Alberta developed the second most northern turf wicket in the world in Edmonton and last week, seeds were finally planted on Cricket BC's first turf wicket in Abbotsford. Ranjit Saini chronicled his experiences on the Abbotsford ground project...

It was March 2009, when I became 1st VP of Cricket Canada and part of my duties was the responsibility for Infrastructure and the ICC u19 CWC 2011. With no resources assigned and hardly any significant work having been done, I began to work on tedious task of putting resources and people together. One of the core requirements of the CWC planning process was to have sufficient number of turf grounds to conduct the warm up and first round of matches. It became apparent that for the initial round of matches, we needed two grounds in close proximity to each other for each of the four groups.

I took my first visit outside of Ontario as an Interim President to Vancouver and walked with a measuring wheel from one ground to another to find regulation size grounds that could take turf wickets and nets. Vikram Bawa and Vimal Hardatt took me from one place to another. The scene of an a president running up and down and measuring grounds must have been  amusing to many, as this type of turf related promises and activity had been going on for a while

The only committed party, Abbotsford City that was already ready and committed to accept a turf wicket and what we needed were one more ground. Due to recession, and to lift the economy, the government opened up RInC (Recreation Infrastructure Canada) grants. Many thought that it was a long shot… but I insisted and applied for grants for two grounds each in BC and Manitoba. To my surprise….it all went thru.

Exavating existing soil

 

We could not find the second ground in BC and ran out of time in putting things together for the hosting u19 CWC. In the end it became apparent that major repair work had to be done on many grounds in GTA in order to host the CWC as the possibility to have grounds in pairs in other parts of the country diminished. Our grant application was declined and other resources couldn’t be put together in time as private/corporate resources weren’t there to come in the short time. The u19 CWC hosting opportunity was lost. 

Unless, we were willing to shut down TDCA for one full year and the funding existed for the upgrades and repairs, we wouldn’t be ready to host the CWC. In the end, our failure to find the second ground in BC and the lack of approval for turf pitch installations from Assiniboine Park authorities in Winnipeg contributed towards the decision for not to host the ICC u19 CWC.

The focus shifted for the Senior Men’s World Cup and the project in Abbotsford fell on the back burner. We struggled financially thru the CWC as resources to sufficiently support the team weren’t there. If it wasn’t for the extension of RInC grants for one more year, the project at Abbotsford would have also failed.

The most serious challenge of course was the soil as we ran out of local places where we could find proper clay soil for Abbotsford pitch. The cost of transportation from another province was very prohibitive. Cricket Canada executive had to struggle to find resources to cover additional costs. In the end, we are able to stay close to the original budget as more work was assumed by the volunteers and the contractor agreed to slash his labour costs and Mr. Ed Bracht, provided  some funding from the trust fund.

We finished seeding the wicket on 20th October 2011 at 6.45 PM. It was pitch dark and cold when the covers were put on to assist the germination of the seed. I am told...Rye grass grows 12 months a year in this part of the country and that the pitch will be lush green in about 3 weeks’ time.  Having seeded most of the pitch myself…I can’t wait to see this happen.

 

The Abbotsford Cricket Club is already planning tournaments, I have visited the pavilion and seen the change rooms in the building that is on the boundary line and is currently used in the stadium by other sports. Abbotsford have good reasons to become an ICC Approved ODI ground as most of the required infrastructure exists.  The Abbotsford wicket provides us with an opportunity to have one more ICC approved ODI ground in Canada with least exposure to costs.

 

 

The new pitch (seeded and covered with evergreen grass cover)

 

The “Let’s do it” attitude and second to none work ethics of the Abbotsford City staffs  were the most fundamental ingredient of this to happen in time and see the successful conclusion. They are already planning to have their staffs trained and have identified a person to look after the pitch during the season. Action is being taken to stock the soil to avoid layering and uneven bounce caused with un-matched soils. The staffs at the City of Abbotsford are the best one can hope for. I am confident that the pitch will be well looked after and that this will be genuine success story.

Scott Watson and all his colleagues deserve appreciation and honours as one of the finest among the City/Municipal staffs that I have ever had the opportunity to meet with. To my delight and surprise, they were extremely quick to facilitate a visit by the staffs from the City of Surrey, to see the wicket in construction and an opportunity for me to discuss turf wickets in the City of Surrey. I have been told that there may be two new cricket facilities in the near future in Abbotsford and in Surrey. After seeing the enthusiasm that prevails all around here…I am certain that the Abbotsford Turf Pitch will not be a lonely single natural turf wicket in BC. It will have others follow it very soon….

 

 

Hugh Norris (City of Surrey), Ranjit Saini and Scott Watson (City of Abbotsford)The Pavilion in the back ground

The memories of the walk behind the measuring wheel, that saw the pitch at Abbotsford moved north by 15 feet, the loss of u19 CWC hosting opportunity, the struggle for resources and the search for proper clay mix and the generosity of the City of Abbotsford are the memories of a  lifetime. This project will help improve cricket in BC as more and more municipalities will become interested and move forward with new turf pitches. Such facilities will be  needed in Winnipeg, Montreal and Halifax for the efficient staging of the regional league fixtures (Our own version of the 1st class cricket) that may see its beginning in 2012.

This is the building of an aspiring cricket nation….one pitch at a time…..

Cricket Canada announces squad for Namibia tour April 5th - 12th, 2012. Canada will play both a 4 day Intercontiental cup fixture and two World Cricket League Championship matches from Wanderers in Windhoek, Nambia.

Canada Squad:

Rizwan Cheema (captain), Jimmy Hansra, Rustam Bhatti, Ruvindu Gunasekera, Hiral Patel, Nitish Kumar, Harvir Baidwan, Manninder Aulakh, Henry Osinde, Raza Rehman, Usman Limbada, Junaid Siddiqui, Zeeshan Siddiqui, Durand Sorraine

ICC NEWS RELEASE

 

 

The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) in partnership with the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) and the Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) will officially launch the CIMA Mayor's School Cricket Tournament. The tournament will be held on May 14 to 17 at the Eglinton Flats Park, G. Ross Lord Park, Centennial Park and Sunnybrook Park. The final games of the tournament will be held on June 2 at Summerlea Park.

CIMA has partnered with the City of Toronto since 2005 on cricket projects aimed to engage youth from Toronto's diverse neighbourhoods.

For further details please visit: www.cima.mayorscricket.com

Western Stallions V Pacific Edge

This match turned out to be lower scoring thriller after the Western Stallions had appeared in control for much of the day. Having bowled out Pacific Edge for 143 on the back of some excellent pace bowling form Henry Osinde (3-29) and Khurram Chohan (2-11), the Stallions appeared in control as they reached  4-121 with  Shehzad Bachir (60) and Usman Limbada (39)at the crease. But when Manny Aulakh (3-22) took 3 quick wickets  to reduce the Stallions to 8-138, the Pacific Edge had a sniff of victory. But 2 boundaries from Henry Osinde got the Stallions over the line. Early Jimmy Hansra (48) and Damodar Daesrath (28) managed to get the Pacific Edge to 143, but ultimately they did not have enough runs.
 
SCORECARD
http://www.crichq.com/matches/51780
 
Prairie Fire v Eastern Fury
 
Prairie Fire recorded a comfortable 7 wicket victory over the Eastern Fury on the back of an excellent batting display in chase of 205 for victory. A 99 run partnership between Hiral Patel (70) and Ruvindu Gunasekera (46) set up the chase for the Fire, which was then professionally  finished by an unbeaten partnership between Zeeshan Siddiqi (27*) and T&T’s Jason Mohamed (38*). Earlier Ashish Bagai showed he was still a player of great class in scoring an unbeaten 97 off 107 balls, to get the Fury past 200 when at one stage a much smaller total looked likely. 
 
SCORECARD
http://www.crichq.com/matches/51842

Turf Wicket Maintenance Staffs

 

On behalf of local cricket organisations, Cricket Canada wishes to search, engage and where necessary train personnel to maintain turf wickets in Abbotsford (BC) and Edmonton (AB). These are part time positions and involve following responsibilities:

1.       Annual maintenance at the end of the season i.e. level and re-seed as required.

2.       Prepare pitches as required per match schedules provided by the leagues.

3.       Provide in-season repair as may be required due to damage.

4.       Maintain and provide necessary irrigation as required.

5.       Communicate and interact with cricket as well as municipal authorities.

The ideal candidate:

1.       The ideal candidates have strong and demonstrated interest in cricket

2.       Have previous experience in turf wicket maintenance or other similar position and are willing to learn and adapt to flexible hours.

3.       A seasonal part time position is ideal for them and are looking for such position to supplement their income

4.       Are able to handle with care, safety and expertise heavy equipment such as rollers etc.

5.       Have reliable mode of transport to come to the facility

 

All those who are interested, please forward your enquiries to Ingleton Liburd at ingletonliburd@cricketcanada.org. Please respond before 20th March 2015. 

USA Dominant in Opening Match

 

USA Openers in form early

 

The ICC Americas U19 Division 1 Championship commenced today in Bermuda, with Bermuda taking on the USA at Somerset Cricket Club. On a hot and sunny morning, USA won the toss and elected to bat.

 

This proved the correct decision early as openers Mohak Buch and Yadunandan Polisetty turned the strike over early. Once settled, the openers took advantage of the undisciplined Bermudian attack, scoring regular boundaries as they moved to 0-64 at the first drinks break.

 

Things remained the same after the break as the Buch and Polisetty brought up their 100 run partnership. The pair moved to 129 before Jordan Smith dismissed Polisetty for 37. Buch, who had batted superbly for his 76, was trapped in front by J. Smith shortly after. Bermuda started taking regular wickets, with Chare Smith grabbing two quick ones, however numerous extras and lapses in the field hurt the home side, as Alexander Shoff and Chetram Persuad kept the scoreboard ticking over.

 

In reply, Bermuda lost quick wickets early with both Keifer Phill and Karan Patel attacking the stumps. Shortly after, Bermuda lost Jordan Smith, adjudged LBW off Patel, Bermuda had found itself in deep trouble at 3-26.

 

Things didn’t get any easier for the Bermudian batsman, and although the score was moving along quickly, the loss of wickets at regular intervals stunted any chance of a comeback. The lower order added some resistance, with a couple of large 6s, and a handy 28 from Chare Smith. However, it was too little, too late for Bermuda who were dismissed for 119 in the 23rd over.

 

Keifer Phill and Karan Patel were the pick of the bowlers, while Alexander Shoff picked up 2 wickets at the end. Mohak Buch was named Man of the Match for his 76.

 

USA have a rest day tomorrow, while Bermuda take on Canada at St David’s Cricket Club.

 

Scores in Brief:

 

USA v Bermuda

USA 255/10 from 50 overs (Buch 76, Polisetty 37, C. Smith 4-43)

Bermuda 119/10 from 22.3 overs (C. Smith 28, Phill 3-26, Shoff 2-9)

USA won by 136 runs

Man of the Match: Mohak Buch (USA)

 

Tournament Standings:

ICC Americas U19 Division 1 Championship - BERMUDA 2015

 

DAY 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Team

Played

Won

Lost

No Result

Points

NRR

Runs
For

Runs
Against

 
 

USA

1

1

0

0

2

2.720

255

119

 

Canada

0

0

0

0

0

0.000

0

0

 

Bermuda

1

0

1

0

0

-2.720

119

255

 

Day three of the ICC Americas U19 Division 1 Championship was a top of the table clash between the two undefeated sides. Canada came into the day off the back of a strong performance against Bermuda, while the USA, fresh off a rest day, came ready to prove themselves against the strong Canadian side.

 

Canada won the toss and elected to bat on an overcast, muggy morning at Somerset Cricket Club. Karan Patel got plenty out of the pitch early, claiming two early wickets to have Canada on the back foot. However erratic bowling and would stunt this momentum, with 39 wides bowled in the innings. When S. Patel picked up the prized wicket of Arslan Khan, USA looked like wrestling the ascendency back. At this point, skipper Muhammad Khan was joined by Harsh Thaker, who joined forces to again propel the run rate. The pair pushed singles, and punished bad deliveries, racing towards a 100 run partnership. M. Khan chalked up his 50, and the score passed 200, however a quick single would see Thaker run out for 47. This would trigger a collapse as M. Khan was caught in the deep two balls later for a well-made 68.

 

Miraj Patel was the only member of the tail to provide any real resistance as the Canadians were bowled out for 240 in the 49th over. The pick of the bowlers for the USA was Karan Patel with 4-40 off 9.1 overs.

 

After taking the ascendency back in the second half of the Canadian innings, the USA batsmen were looking to continue this trend. M. Khan and Suliman Khan had other ideas though, using their pace to push the openers on the back foot. A. Khan trapped Yadunandan Polisetty in front without scoring, while S. Khan removed Mohak Buch and Sagar Patel in quick succession to have the USA reeling at 4-10 in the 5thover.

 

Srihari Dasarathy provided some stability at the top of the order and supported Guaranshu Sharma, whose clean striking pushed the score past 50. A short time later, some sharp work in the field from Thaker had Dasarathy run out for 22, who was quickly followed back to the pavilion by Sharma after a mix up saw both he and Alexander Shoff at the same end. Three overs later another wicket fell and Canada looked to be closing on a dominant victory, as USA still required 157 with only three wickets in hand.

 

Karan Patel joined Shoff at the crease, and the two worked together to work the ball around, while taking advantage of any loose deliveries. Shoff batted with maturity beyond his years as he pushed singles, putting faith in his tail order batsman who looked comfortable controlling the tempo of the match.

 

The two surged past 100, bringing up their 50 run partnership, and Shoff’s 50 shortly after. Shoff started to open his shoulders, showing some crisp, clean hitting as he took advantage of the slightest mistakes from the Canadian bowlers. At the other end, Patel launched a few of his own, but just as quickly was knocked over by M. Khan for a superb 29 (45). Kiefer Phill came to the crease with the score 8-161, and put together a much needed 30 run partnership, however his dismissal left a seemingly impossible task for Shoff, as USA required 50 runs or 7 overs with just the one wicket in hand.

 

The spectators at Somerset Cricket Club would be treated to an extraordinary display. Sahil Patel played the role of number 11 perfectly, pushing singles down the ground and giving the strike to Shoff, who by this stage had complete control of the game. At the end of the 46thover, USA had moved to 9-215, still with plenty of work to do. The 47th over saw Shoff launch two successive sixes off Haseeb, as the score moved to 233.

 

Thaker and Miraj Patel bowled two very tight overs for the Canadians, while Shoff pushed a single down the ground and brought up a near perfect century off just 75 deliveries. USA entered the 49th over requiring three runs for victory. Patel pushed the first delivery into a gap for a single, bringing Shoff on strike for the remaining 5 deliveries with only 2 runs to win. Shoff pushed the ball into a gap and set off for the single, but was turned back by Patel, and a lunging dive could was not enough to save him from being run out. Shoff ended with 103 off 81 deliveries, with 9 fours and 5 sixes as USA fell 1 run short of the Canadians, but could hold their heads up high after a courageous display.

 

Canadian Coach Errol Barrow was proud of his players “I thought we were probably 40 runs short with the bat, but our bowlers responded well early which was pleasing. Full credit to Alex Shoff, who batted really well, I’m just proud of my boys for holding their nerve”.

 

Alexander Shoff was awarded Man of the Match honours for his magnificent century.

 

Scores in Brief:

Canada v Bermuda

Canada 241/10 from 48.1 overs (M. Khan 68, Thaker 47, K. Patel 4-40)

USA 240/10 from 49.2 overs (Shoff 103, Sharma 43, M. Khan 3-52)

Canada won by 1 runs

Man of the Match: Alexander Shoff (USA)

 

 

Tournament Standings:

 

 







ICC Americas U19 Division 1 Championship - BERMUDA 2015
DAY 3  
Team Played Won Lost No Result Points NRR Runs Runs
For Against
Canada 2 2 0 0 4 0.72 498 426
USA 2 1 1 0 2 1.35 495 360
Bermuda 2 0 2 0 0 -2.07 305 512