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CT20: Netherlands Preview


Sussex Sharks open their Caribbean T20 campaign with a clash against the Netherlands this evening at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua (8pm GMT).

10th January 2012

The Sharks are in Zone B of the tournament along with the Dutch, Jamaica, Combined Campuses and Colleges and Barbados.

Yardy’s men will be hoping to recreate the form against the Netherlands which saw them storm to two Clydesdale Bank 40 victories over their opponents last season, both at The PROBIZ County Ground and in the return fixture at the VRA Ground in Amstelveen, just outside Amsterdam.

The associate nation will be missing two key players in Essex all-rounder Ryan ten Doeschate and Australian-born batsman Tom Cooper, but the Sharks will need to be wary of Eric Szwarczynski, who hit a stunning century against them at The PROBIZ last season and opening bowler Mudassar Bukhari who picked up three scalps in Sussex’s five-wicket victory.

Highly rated young batsman Alexei Kervezee of Worcestershire is also in the Netherlands squad for the tournament and will be another key man for the Dutch, having already played 37 ODI’s for his country at the age of 22.

With players such as Matt Prior and Monty Panesar on England duty, Luke Wright at the Australian Big Bash and Murray Goodwin and Ed Joyce unavailable, Sussex have a 13-man squad in the Caribbean which represents an excellent chance for the younger players in the squad, particularly Matt Machan who impressed with a half-century against India and on his LV=County Championship debut at the end of last season.

He is likely to open the batting with vice-skipper Chris Nash whilst Kirk Wernars and Will Beer are two other youngsters who will be eager to make an impression in such a big tournament.

Joe Gatting has recently signed a new contract extension at The PROBIZ, and Ben Brown and Andy Hodd will battle it out for the gloves. Naveed Arif Gondal was in domestic Twenty20 action in Pakistan before Christmas and will add some bulk to the possible opening attack of Amjad Khan and Chris Liddle. Yardy will of course lead his troops out in the country where he won the World Twenty20 with England in 2010.

There will also be updates straight to your smartphone from Sussex’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

Sussex Sharks (probable): Machan, Nash, Gatting, Yardy (capt), Brown, Wernars, Hodd, Naveed Arif, Beer, Amjad Khan, Liddle.

Netherlands (from): Borren (capt), Barresi, Bukhari, Buurman, de Grooth, Gruijters, van der Gugten, Heggelman, Kervezee, Malik, Myburgh, Seelaar, Szwarczynski, Swart.

Day One Round-Up (courtesy of ESPN Cricinfo):

Guyana shrugged off their off-field problems to beat Leeward Islands by five wickets in Antigua on the opening day of the Caribbean T20. Guyana's bowlers, after being asked to field, bowled economically, restricting Leewards for 134 for 6. Steven Jacobs picked up 2 for 18 in four overs. Several of Leewards' batsmen got starts but didn't push on; Justin Athanaze dealt some big blows in the late overs to finish with an unbeaten 30 off 15 balls.

Guyana lost a couple of early wickets in the chase but useful contributions from the middle order saw them through. Shivnarine Chanderpaul struck four sixes in his 30, captain Christopher Barnwell made 21 off 19 balls, Leon Johnson top-scored with 37 off 32 and added 23 in quick time with Royston Crandon. Victory was achieved in the final over, with four balls to spare.

Windward Islands beat Trinidad & Tobago by 11 runs in Antigua in a low-scoring game. After choosing to bat, Windwards found themselves in a tricky situation at 73 for 4 but Darren Sammy, their captain, made an unbeaten 41 off just 31 balls to take them to a competitive 129 for 4. The T&T bowlers were economical, Samuel Badree leading the way with 2 for 17 in four overs.

Lendl Simmons began positively for T&T in the chase, though the going at the other end was slower. When he fell, in the 13th over, with the score on 59, the pressure was on T&T. Shane Shillingford picked up three wickets and was supported by Garey Mathurin, and Windwards won despite a half-century from Dwayne Bravo, who was the ninth wicket to fall. T&T lost seven wickets for 59, and were restricted to 118 for 9.

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