Sun, 08/07/2011

Afghanistan has struck first in the 2 match ODI series against Canada winning by 2 wickets in a rain affected match at King City. 

Canada rebounded well in a format of the game that suits them as Ruvindu Gunasekera (74) and Hiral Patel (62) put on 72 runs in a mere 9 overs for the first wicket before Gunasekera fell. From there Canada were unable to build solid partnerships as like the Intercontinental Cup match, they were undone by poor shot selection. 

Rizwan Cheema entertained the crowd in the middle order with his 35 but no other batsmen could stay long enough to get a substantive total. Where 280 was probably a par score for this wicket, Canada collasped to 230. 

The reply got off to an uneven start for Canada as they lost opening bowler Henry Osinde after he took an early wicket to reduce Afghanistan to 7-1. Rizwan Cheema finished his over with a wicket to reduce the Afghans to 11-2. 

From then on it was an exercise in mediocrity for Canada with the ball and in the field allowing Afghanistan to ease the pressure and build a partnership. While rain interupted their charge, Afghanistan were in control until Canada staged a miracle fightback taking 4 wickets in 2 overs to give Canada a fightlng chance. 

Canada and Afghanistan clash on Tuesdsay at Toronto Cricket Club. Fans are reminded that there is limited parking at the club and to use public transit to get to the game. 

 

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Sat, 08/06/2011

Canada will need wins in both their final games to sneak into the 2012 u19 Cricket World Cup after a devasting loss to Papua New Guinea on Saturday.  Should things not go their way in the final two matches, Canada will look back at today's game as well as the game against Kenya as ones that got away when they shouldnt have.

Despite losing the toss, Canada's openers raced out to a good start, putting on 49 runs in 8 overs for the opening wicket. From there it was the Nitish Kumar show as the stylish batsmen, coming in at 3, put up a tournament best 150, to pace Canada to 261. Despite the good start, the tail did not wag as hoped and Canada were a few runs short.

While nobody after Kumar reached double figures, Canada were well positioned when the bowlers raced out quickly, picking up 3 quick wickets as PNG are 13-3 in 3 overs. From there it was all Christopher Kent as he managed the strike beautifully, protecting his lesser partners when he needed to and letting them have a go when they could. The drama raged until the final over where Kent remarkably stood on the non-strikers end whe nthe winning runs were hit.

Canada's equation is simple, win against both the USA and Afghanistan and they should qualify. Scotland and hosts Ireland are through as well as Nepal, where Vanuatu and Kenya are out. Three spot, 5 teams, 2 will go home devastated.

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Fri, 08/05/2011

Canada put i their worst batting performance of the tournament losing to Ireland u19 by 5 wickets. Canada were bowled out for 37 and fought hard to take 5 Irish wickets.
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Fri, 08/05/2011

Afghanistan closed out their one-sided Intercontinental Cup match against Canada in King City, winning by nine wickets despite losing the entire second day to rain. Having begun the final day on 176 for 7, Harvir Baidwan and Khurram Chohan added 52 for the seventh wicket before Chohan was caught behind for 24 off Mohammad Nabi. The innings folded three runs later for 231, with Baidwan, who made a painstaking 50 from 151 balls, last out, giving Canada a lead of 68.

Led by Karim Sadiq's run-a-ball 37, Afghanistan chased the target down in just 11.3 overs for the loss of Noor Ali Zadran's wicket. Hamid Hassan picked up three more wickets in Canada's second innings, giving him match figures of 10 for 85 and earning him Man-of-the-Match honours.

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Tue, 08/02/2011

A spirited day where Canada took all 10 Afghan wickets came to a screeching halt on Tuesday as Canada's top order capitulated losing 4 wickets for 21 runs in 12 overs to leave Canada teetering at 21-4

Earlier in the day, Canada won the toss and elected to bowl on the green top. Zahid Hussain (3-56) was the pick of the bowlers but Chohan, Osinde and Baidwan picked up two each to bowl the Afghani's out.

Canada have a big job ahead on Wednesday to get back into the game.

 

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Mon, 08/01/2011

Canada lost another heartbreaker at the 2011 u19 Cricket World Cup Qualifier dropping Canada to 2-2 in the tournament.
Despite a century from Nikhil Dutta (116), Canada were unable to hold off Namibia despite a late fightback from the bowlers. Manny Aulakh (2-22) was the pick of Canada's bowlers.

Canada takes on first place Nepal on Wednesday
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Mon, 08/01/2011

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.

Fri, 07/29/2011

Canada u19 has lost a heartbreaker to Kenya u19 at the ICC u19 Cricket World Cup Qualification Tournament in Ireland. 

Batting second, Canada was unable to chase down the Kenyan total of 215 despite half centuries from Nikhil Dutta (55) and Akash Shah (51). Earlier in the day, Canada had Kenya on the ropes at 47-4 but Duncan Allan (103) and Joseph Ochieng (73) led an impressive fightback to post the winning score. 

Nitish Kumar (3-26) and Manny Aulakh (3-31) led Canada's bowling attack. 

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Fri, 07/22/2011

 

The oldest rivalry in the history of international sports continued today as Canada and the USA took the field at the ICC America's T20 Championship in Florida. 

Both teams were 3-0 heading into the game and the team of upstart Canadian's were keen to impose their mark on the tournament. Having lost this title last year in a lobsided final, Canada had revenge on its mind heading into Friday's clash and showed initative by winning the toss and putting themselves into bat. 

Khushroo Wadia (56*) got Canada off to a lighting start in the game and with Jason Sandher (23), Canada were well placed for a large total. USA fought their way back into the game with a dogged effort from their spinners. None of the Canadian batsmen after 3 hit double figures and the target was a gettable 131. 

USA got off to a quick start with Sushil Nadkani leading the way. Jimmy Hansra brought himself into the attack to stem the tide and the pressure began to mount on the USA. All the bowlers found themselves in the wickets and with the asking rate rising about 8, USA struggled to keep pace. Zahid Hussain held his nerves bowling the 20th over and Canada won by 10 runs. 

Though not out of the woods yet, Canada's youngsters are now alone in first place with a match against last place Suriname to secure the title. 

The win against a favoured American side, playing at home, was a shot in the arm for a Canadian team without many of its top players and puts Canada in place to obtain the final ICC America's trophy missing from the trophy cabinet. 

President Ranjit Saini was proud of the team saying at the conclusion of the match. 

Though we still have one more game to play, we are pleased with the team and our rookie captain. It just proves the point that we have been making all along. "Cricket in North America is Canada's Game". Cricket has survived and grown here despite harsh winters, short summers, a huge country and being away from major cricket centers. 

The future is promising and we will take care of it in our own way. The Canadian way...respect for our differences, finding middle ways, being innovative and live within our means." 

Canada takes on Suriname tomorrow. 

Thu, 07/21/2011

 

On Friday, Canada will take on USA in the fourth match of the ICC America's T20 Tournament. On form, the match will be a defacto championship match between the two top teams in the tournament. 

The young side that Canada sent to the tournament has hit their mark very quickly and Jimmy Hansra, who with Hamza Tariq, are the lone representatives from the World Cup side has led from the front to help his team to a 3-0 record. 

For his part, Hansra is pleased so far with the performance of his team. 

"The young squad is progressing nicely. They are sticking together outside the games and really have found a bond with each other. I wanted to ensure the unity is present, so we have been having breakfast, lunch and dinner together as a team. On our day off, all of us spend the whole day together at south beach. The atmosphere is very friendly and players are expressing themselves freely which is also helping them give their best when they play." 

When asked about heading into a match against a more experienced USA team who are playing at home, Hansra was upbeat about his team's chances 

"This group is hungry for wins and I highly believe they are focused regardless their opposition. Playing for their Country has been taken for granted before at times but this young group is competitive and pride themselves in winning for their Country. Our goal is come back undefeated and we have two more games to accomplish just that. " 

Canada and the USA clash on Friday at 530pm Eastern Time