Singapore have soared up the T20I rankings since full status was applied to pretty much all international T20 matches. The Asian island have even defeated Test nation Zimbabwe during their meteoric rise.
Now it’s the turn of another Asian island (Or four islands) to make headway in the cricketsphere. Japan’s U-19 side might not have performed sensationally on the pitch but their progress hasn’t gone unnoticed. Diehard sports fans love an underdog and for the time being at least even big nations like Japan are such when it comes to cricket.
An even bigger country that has also shown up on the U-19 World Cup stage is Nigeria. Like Japan it’s been tough at the tournament but they’ll stronger and more hungry for it. Both sides have a healthy amount of indigenous or dual heritage players in their teams which bodes well for the future. That’s both for the future of their respective teams and cricket in general.
What’s the ceiling limit though? Will they have to apply for Test status? Will it even be relevant for nations that are being groomed on Twenty20 or One-Day Cricket to try and function in longer forms of the game?
It’ll be fascinating to see how the international cricket landscape evolves over the next decade or two. Hopefully nations from all corners of the globe will be playing against one another.
A huge thank you to those of you who’ve viewed, shared, liked, commented, followed or interacted in any way on my blog in 2019. I’m extremely grateful and the odd like or comment from time to time really does make it that little more worthwhile.
2020 seems like an appropriate year for a cricket blog and I intend to keep going strong. It’ll be more of the same from me with polls, quizzes, lots of Cricket 19 content and maybe even some thoughts on real cricket… it does happen from time to time!
Like I say, 2020 is a fitting year for our sport and it’s great that England is launching a new domestic Twenty20 comp… oh no, wait!
Happy New Year to you all wherever you are in the world!
Thanks for voting on my latest poll. Let’s take a look at the results…
Well it’s unambiguous then. 83% of voters feel that the one-year ban (Nine months suspended) applied was appropriate.
Numerous people have had their say on the matter and I do have some sympathy for Smith but ultimately naivety, casualness or lack of professionalism (Call it what you will) can’t be used as an excuse. That may seem harsh but once again please don’t forget the extreme monetary value that rides on WBBL matches. Women’s cricket may still be playing catch-up to that of their male counterparts in regards to many aspects of professionalism but Smith is old enough and experienced enough to have avoided all this.
I think that there’s little doubt that there wasn’t any sinister motive related to the Victorian born’s actions and ultimately I’m sure that we all want to see Smith back on the cricket field as soon as possible, ban considered. I know that I do.
An hour before the official release of the team sheet for what would ultimately be a rained off match, Hobart Hurricanes wicketkeeper Emily Smith posted an Instagram video displaying her side’s playing XI. It’s unlikely that there was any sinister corruption related motive to this and only that Smith was killing time and boredom when drawing attention to her lowly position in the batting order.
In Ed Hawkins ‘Bookie, Gambler, Fixer, Spy’ he alludes to a seemingly innocent conversation in the pool with Ian Bell that could ultimately have been perceived as the England batsman revealing information that could be abused by match-fixers. This highlights how careful players must be. Don’t under estimate how much money rides on Women’s Big Bash matches either!
Hurricanes’ Smith seems to have been naive rather than sinisterly motivated but the words of Cricket Australia when banning her…
“We have been working with Emily throughout the process and Emily now understands the mistake she made”.
… suggest that she’s struggled to grasp the severity of the situation. Why Smith had her phone on her at the time is another question given the current protocol. Team management should already have confiscated it. However, despite the excuses provided by some, let’s be clear that Smith is not a kid but 24-years-old and has been playing regularly at the top level of domestic women’s cricket for some time. She also can’t say that she wasn’t warned. Corruption education has been exhaustive. If it were a male non-Australian cricketer would the likes of Andrew Symonds be offering a defence?
Smith has received a year-long ban but nine months of that are suspended. She’ll miss the remainder of the Women’s Big Bash League and Women’s National League. Ultimately she can’t play any cricket, not even amateur cricket, for the remainder of the Australian summer.
What do you think? Is this ban the right amount? Should she have been let off or suffered an even more severe punishment?
What do the public want? (By public I mean the six people including myself that voted on this poll!)
Not the Hundred!
Interestingly, 67% of voters would like to have just kept the T20 Blast in its current county form. I thought that more than 33% might have plumped for a T20 city based franchise competition but like a batsman’s average the stats don’t lie!
If you haven’t already then please vote on my latest poll on the subject of coin tossing in Test cricket. You can find the Polls section of my blog by clicking on the Menu & Widgets tab at the top right of my home page then selecting Batting Order then Select Category then Polls.
Come to think of it, why don’t I just provide you with the link to my latest poll?
I just wanted to draw (Literally) your attention to some thrilling news. There’s a new Ghostbusters film out next year and judging by the title it’s got a cricket theme!
We all know how little cricket is accessible on TV let alone the big screen which is surprising given the narrative that the game often produces. Hopefully Ghostbusters 2020 will be the start of play on a steady stream of cricket themed movies.
I’m really interested to see what the storyline will be. Will it be ghosts hosting ‘Busters’ at the SCG or will the phantoms and their menaces pop up in India, USA, Papua New Guinea or at Lords?
We’ll just have to wait our turn to bat to find out!
Here’s my latest poll. It’s a chance to have your say on something extremely relevant happening in cricket right now. Please share with your friends so that we can really get a feel for public opinion on this…
Many thanks for voting and be sure to look out for the results in a week’s time.