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USA Cricket: ICC Americas Championship underway in Florida
by DreamCricket USA
Nov 25, 2008


Bermuda will seek to defend title against some tough competition in the Fifth Pepsi ICC Americas Division 1 Championship that began today in Fort Lauderdale. Bermuda won the championship for the first time in Toronto in 2006.

A three-way contest between Bermuda, Canada and USA is expected with Caymans and Argentina hoping to steal their thunder (as Caymans has done in the past). USA last won the championship in 2002. Canada won in 2000 and 2004.

USA has a very strong team in the competition, which includes two key players - Steve Massiah (Capt) and Sushil Nadkarni (Vice Capt), who were both unavailable for the tour to West Indies earlier this month.

At the time of going to press, USA was on a solid footing (160 for 2 from 26 overs) in its first match against Suriname. Suriname are the new entrants into Division 1 after their superlative performance at the regional Division 2 tournament earlier in the year. But Suriname's entry has been hampered by strict USA visa procedures which resulted in travel permits being denied to half the Surinamese team.

Rankings cannot be relied upon

Although USA, Canada and Bermuda are regarded as comparable in the region, they are miles apart in World Cricket League standings. By that ranking, USA is inferior to all but one team in the region and only slightly better than Suriname.

Not only are Canada and Bermuda officially ODI nations by ICC parlance - Canada are 4th and Bermuda 6th in Division 1 of World Cricket League alongside teams like Kenya, Scotland, Ireland and Netherlands.

USA is stuck in the bottom-most division (Division 5) from where it failed to emerge in 2008 and where it must remain until 2010. Even Cayman Islands and Argentina have climbed up the ladder and will play in the WCL Global Division 3 to be played in January 2009. And if they finish among the top two teams there,they too will have a chance to play in the 2009 ICC World Cup Qualifier.

For Team USA, the choice is clear. They must win this tournament at any cost - not just to prove that the rankings are without substance, but also because the ICC Americas tournament is their last remaining chance until 2010 to claim the credit that is due.

Squads:

USA: Sushil Nadkarni, Carl Wright, Rashard Marshall, Steve Massiah (Capt), Sudesh Dhaniram, Aditya Thyagarajan, Orlando Baker, Tim Ray Allen, Nasir Javed, Imran Awan, Shahid Munir, Akeem Dodson, Lennox Cush, Robert Cresser.

ARGENTINA: Esteban MacDermott (capt), Agustin Casime, Diego Lord, Martin Siri, Alejandro Ferguson, Tomas Francis, Donald Forrester, Esteban Nino, Gary Savage, David Mauro, Hamish Barton, Pablo Ryan, Lucas Paterlini and Pablo Ferguson.

BERMUDA: Irving Romaine (capt), Rodney Trott, Stephen Outerbridge, Jekon Edness, Stefan Kelly, Joslyn Pitcher, Russell Leverock, Glenn Smith-Blakeney, Lionel Cann, Kevin Hurdle, Tamauri Tucker, David Hemp, Delyone Borden, Oronde Bascome, Christopher Douglas, Kyle Hodsoll and Jordan DeSilva.

CANADA: Sunil Dhaniram (capt), Abdool Samad, Elon Katchay, Henry Osinde, Umar Bhatti, Harvir Singh Baidwan, Zubin Surkari, Sandeep Jyoti, Mulla Asif, Jason Sandher, Balaji Dorakanti, Mohammed Iqbal, Karun Jethi and Qaiser Ali.

CAYMAN ISLANDS: Pearson Best (capt), Steve Gordon, Ryan Bovell, Michael Wight, Troy Taylor, Ainsley Hall, Kevin Bazil, Kevon Bazil, Marlon Bryan, Kervin Ebanks, Alessandro Morris, Ricardo Roach, Ramon Sealy and Omar Willis.

SURINAME: (Subject to change due to visa uncertainty) Sanjay Meghoe (capt), Shazam Ramjohn, Deoraj Sewanan, Vishal Singh, Carlton Baker, Arun Gokoel, Tariq Islam, Ranjiet Terbhawan, Brahma Prasad, Kemraj Hardat, Kevin Baker,Vidanand Jaipaul, Sanjay Oemraw, Mahendra Boodram, Troy Dudnauth, Shelton Duditana and Firos Hoseinbaks.

Fixtures:

Tuesday 25 November
Argentina v Canada
Bermuda v Cayman Islands
USA v Suriname


Wednesday 26 November
Bermuda v Suriname
Canada v Cayman Islands
USA v Argentina


Thursday 27 November
Argentina v Cayman Islands
Canada v Suriname
USA v Bermuda


Friday 28 November
Rest/Reserve day

Saturday 29 November
Argentina v Bermuda
Cayman Islands v Suriname
USA v Canada


Sunday 30 November
Argentina v Suriname
Bermuda v Canada
USA v Cayman Islands
 
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