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Japan begins cricket World Cup bid

May 22 2008 at 06:27PM

London - Japan will be among several lesser-known cricketing nations taking the first step Friday in the Channel Island of Jersey on the long road to the 2011 World Cup.

They will be among 12 teams, including Afghanistan, Mozambique, Germany, the United States and Vanuatu taking part in the International Cricket Council World League Division Five which runs from May 23 to 31.

The ultimate goal is a place in three years' time at the World Cup in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Tournament finalists in Jersey, a British-ruled island nearer France than the UK mainland, will be promoted to Division Four.

There they will join Hong Kong, Fiji, Tanzania and Italy in a six-team event that will take place in the Tanzanian capital of Dar-Es-Salaam from October 4 to 11.

In turn, the top two teams there will progress to Division Three in Argentina in January.

They will then go to the United Arab Emirates for next year's World Cup qualifier, which incorporates Divisions One and Two.

At the end of that tournament the top four teams from beyond the elite will join the 10 full, Test, members of the ICC (England, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, West Indies, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and Bangladesh) to decide the world's best one-day international side.

Japan team manager Jarrad Shearer said cricket in the country would get a huge boost from doing well in Jersey.

"The biggest problem cricket in Japan faces is lack of exposure," he said in an ICC statement. "The average person just doesn't know what cricket is. That's why tournaments like this are so important.

"Our goal for this tournament is, first and foremost, to win it and progress to Division Four."

But Shearer admitted that wouldn't be easy.

"Preparation has been difficult as our season doesn't start here until April so very few of the players have had any club matches.

"Nonetheless, we started pre-season in January. As winters here are quite cold, much of our training has been indoors at a tennis centre."

He added: "We also played two games at the beginning of May against Melbourne Cricket Club, whose players included an ex-Test cricketer and a current New South Wales representative.

"Those games were excellent practice and we won the second game."

And he insisted there were Japan players who could make an impact in Jersey.

"Our number three batsman Masaomi Kobayashi is definitely a player to watch. He hits the ball hard and has a tremendous eye, which gives him a lot of time to play his shots.

"We expect he will score a lot of runs and give most teams grief."

"Our wicket-keeper and opening batsman Tatsuro Chino is also a tremendous prospect," Shearer added.

"He has great hands behind the wicket. He didn't drop a catch or let a single bye through at the ICC East Asia-Pacific tournament in Auckland last year." - Sapa-AFP

East Coast Massiv
16,652 Posts
wont be bad seeing the cricket WC go to a place like that, introduce the sport in those nations.

I see our dumbass captain finds form in the IPL, his being playing pretty well, so far the best of the SA players on show, including Pollock, its amazing what a fat pay cheque can do to your performance levels.

East Coast Massiv
16,652 Posts
Its old news but its history, never would I have thought Fatty Smith would lead us to our first test series vicotry in England since the 1960's. It was a brilliant show of the bat from fatboy & his done the country proud. :applause:

Smith seals it for Proteas

Third npower Test Match
Edgbaston - Day Four
England 231 (A N Cook 76, I R Bell 50) & 363 (P D Collingwood 135, K P Pietersen 94, M Morkel 4-97) v South Africa 314 (N D McKenzie 72, J H Kallis 64, A Flintoff 4-89) & 283-5 (G C Smith 154 no)
South Africa beat England by 5 wkts

Skipper Graeme Smith led from the front with an unbeaten century as South Africa secured a five-wicket victory in the third Test at Edgbaston that also seals the series.

The Proteas moved into an unassailable 2-0 lead as they chased down a target of 281 with a day to spare, after England had been bowled out for 363 in their second innings.

Paul Collingwood was the last man out for an excellent 135 and hopes of a home win were raised when South Africa slumped to 93-4 in their run chase.

However, Smith steered his side home in style, fittingly hitting the winning runs to finish on 154 not out and seal the Proteas' first series victory on English soil since 1965.

Mark Boucher was alongside his skipper on 45 not out at the end of a contest that had threatened to boil over in the afternoon session when two batsmen were trapped lbw when they hadn't picked up the ball.

On both occasions Andrew Flintoff was the bowler, the all-rounder somehow managing from the Pavilion End to find a blind spot in the background, just as he had done on the second evening during a hostile spell that had lifted England off the canvas for the first, but not the last, time in the match.

Neil McKenzie was the first to fail to see a yorker when he turned his head away from one that hit him on the boot, leaving umpire Steve Davis with a simple decision.

The opener left the field with a wry smile on his face but Jacques Kallis was apoplectic after being hit on the thigh by a full toss that he never spotted. It was the second time in the match he had been deceived by his rival all-rounder.

In between Flintoff's double strike Monty Panesar got the benefit of a dubious lbw appeal against Hashim Amla and when James Anderson found the edge of Ashwell Prince's bat, the visitors were four down and on the back foot.

While carnage ensued at the other end Smith stayed calm, looking comfortable against the seamers while using his feet excellently to get right across his crease against the dangerous Panesar.

It was a nasty, turning delivery that should have led to his downfall on 85 but despite the ball wrapping his glove and looping up in the air for wicketkeeper Tim Ambrose to take, England barely bothered with an appeal.

They had been much more vociferous 11 runs earlier when Smith padded up to one that came back out of the rough. Umpire Aleem Dar turned down the shouts and in conjunction with de Villiers, the left-hander edged his team closer to glory with a 76-run stand.

Panesar gave England renewed hope when he had de Villiers caught by Collingwood at slip, but a tiring attack could find no way to remove Smith, who claimed the extra half hour to see his side home in fading light.

Severe blow
Haqving resumed on 297-6 on the fourth morning, England knew they needed to add considerably to their lead of 214, only to be dealt a severe blow in the opening over of the day.

Having suffered at the hands of Kevin Pietersen and Collingwood the previous day, Morne Morkel bounced back in emphatic fashion by bowling Tim Ambrose for 19. But after striking so quickly, the South Africans had to wait more than 16 overs for their next breakthrough.

Ryan Sidebottom proved a major thorn in their side as he stuck around with Collingwood in a 65-run stand for the eighth wicket that pushed England's advantage beyond the 250-mark.

The left-hander was resolute in defence early in the partnership before blossoming with some fine shots of his own, one textbook straight drive off Morkel the pick of his five boundaries out of 22 before he gloved the next ball to Amla at short leg.

Anderson, a hero with the bat in the 10-wicket loss at Headingley in the second Test, proved unable to follow Sidebottom's lead as he contributed just one before chopping on a short ball from Kallis.

The next over saw the innings close, Morkel getting Collingwood to edge a slower ball through to Boucher behind the stumps to end the Durham man's 195-ball knock, as the hosts lost their last three wickets for just one run.
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