2010-10-13 18:18

Captain: Jeroen Smits

Number of World Cup Participations: 3 (1996, 2003 and 2007)

ODI Ranking: N/A Associate with ODI status

Coach: Peter Drinnen

Cricket and the Netherlands are beginning to gel more and more as the years pass – one only has to look back to the period of growth since 1980 to realise that the Dutch have been serious about their cricket for a long time. ICC tournaments have traditionally been their stamping ground, with the first two in 1979 and 1982 bringing little success, which was rectified starting in the 1986 tournament, where they finished as runners up to Zimbabwe.

The same year, Paul-Jan Bakker became the first Dutch player to play county cricket and was described by Windies legend Desmond Haynes as “the fastest white guy” he'd ever faced.

In 1989, the Dutch beat a strong England XI that featured two future England captains in Alec Stewart and Nasser Hussain by 3 runs. It wouldn't be the first time the English experienced defeat at the hands of the Orange army. Skip forward to the T20 World Cup in 2009, where the Oranje once again shamed the English by beating them in their own back yard (at 500/1 odds) – a victory that will remain on the minds of all involved forever!

Inbetween, the Dutch managed to win the ICC Trophy in 2001, and along the way have developed a solid reputation as a strong all-round team. Star players include South African-born Ryan ten Doeschate, who was named the Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year at the ICC Awards in 2010, captain Jeroen Smits, who is a formidable wicketkeeper/batsman, and Tom de Grooth, who opens the batting. Until recently, the Dutch also enjoyed a period with now-Australian paceman Dirk Nannes amongst their ranks, and they will miss his raw pace and excellent line and length bowling.

They take their cricket seriously, but know their limitations – as a consequence, and because 2011 will be their fourth World Cup which is building their experience at this level, their opponents need to be wary. Their 2010 ODI campaign has not been hugely successful, winning just 5 of their 12 matches, but they have killed giants before, and will look to do the same in 2011.


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