|INDIA WIN INAUGURAL U-19 AFRO-ASIA CUP
Vizagapatnam, November 27: India beat Sri Lanka by eight wickets at the ACA-VDCA stadium to claim the first U-19 Afro-Asia Cup competition. India were unbeaten throughout the six-nation tournament.
NEPAL ARE TOP OF THE WORLD
In front of a roaring 15,000 crowd, Nepal won their third ACC U-19 Cup in a row. They beat Malaysia by seven wickets in a thoroughly deserved victory.
ACC U-19 CUP Top Performers
ACC U-19 CUP: THAILAND STRIKE A BLOW
Thailand caused a major upset by beating Group C champions Qatar by five wickets. It was Thailand’s first ever win in ACC competition and is testimony to their enlightened youth policy which has made so much progress in recent years.
Wicket to wicket bowling backed up by excellent fielding restricted Qatar to just 115 runs, as the batsmen struggled against the fizzing just back of a length deliveries from the Thai bowlers.
Dwarfed they may be in stature, but they have hearts of giants and all the Thai bowlers bowled with discipline and fire.
Chasing 115, Thailand opted to grind their way to victory. Qatar came at them fiercely but Thailand’s innings was built around a doughty undefeated half-century from opener Sunil Nalinvilawan. His partners all gave him terrific support and this victory coming so soon after the narrow loss to Oman speaks volumes for the quality of Thai cricket.
Thailand not only played good cricket in this match, they also thought good cricket and fully deserved their victory.
BAHRAIN: ATTITUDE DETERMINES ALTITUDE
There are a large number of worthy teams at ACC Associate level who are playing to a consistently high standard. However Bahrain’s recent trend-setting improvement, should it continue, could well see them upsetting a number of more established teams in the years to come.
They have no turf wickets on which to practise, let alone play, nevertheless they reached the semi-finals of the U-17 Cup in Malaysia earlier this year and may even have reached the Final had atmospheric conditions not forced the tournament to a premature termination. A number of their players featured strongly throughout the tournament and they were good enough to beat the UAE in the quarter-finals. The senior team were a whisker away from winning the 2004 Middle East Cup.
Much credit for this must go to the planning and administration of the Bahrain Cricket Association who do the best they can to ensure that their players have proper practises and adequate sponsorship support for youth and senior tournaments. There may be no turf wickets in Bahrain but for such a small country, they have twenty-five grounds on which cricket is played.
The BCA’s stated goals are in the mid-term, “to increase the number of Bahraini children who play cricket and make three grass grounds so that we can conduct international tournaments. The long term goal of five years is to have a 3000 to 5000 seating stadium with a club house and other world class facilities.”
The ACC Development Officer for Bahrain, Iqbal Sikander, reports favourably on the set up in the country. Schools cricket is flourishing. League cricket is well-established. Women’s cricket is about to start. The promising juniors will in due course be prominent seniors.
The foundations are in place for Bahrain’s cricketers to soar.
Cricket – “shen shi yun dong”, the Noble Game - has come to China. Following the conclusion in Beijing of the Asian Cricket Council’s inaugural Cricket Skills and Coaching Course for China, the Chinese Cricket Association hosted a high-level media conference at which local and international coaches were asked to contribute.