They may not have done as well as expected at the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier, but Namibian star Gerrie Snyman believes that it is essential for ICC Full Member countries to provide more opportunities to cricket’s emerging countries.
Namibia has been able to benefit from Cricket South Africa’s support in including it in their domestic competitions, which many credit to helping Louis Burger’s side reach the final of the ICC Intercontinental Cup last year when it narrowly lost to Ireland.
“It has made a massive difference to us. Playing a lot of cricket you know how to prepare for big tournaments. Before, when we weren’t in the South African domestic season, we had to wait for tours to come to Namibia or we had to organise tours,” said Snyman.
“Now we are playing every second week, and this combination of practice and matches, gives guys lots of confidence and gives a chance to the younger guys who are coming through to play the game.”
Snyman, who was part of the Namibia squad that played at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2003, where his victims included Paul Collingwood and Andrew Flintoff, has called on more Full Members to provide support to the leading Associate sides.
“It is something that has to happen more. If you look at Scotland and Ireland they are strong teams because they play a lot of cricket and it is the same with Namibia. If we play in a Full Member’s domestic competition that is a standard higher than what we are used to and that is what you need as a cricketer,” he said.
“You need competitive cricket every day, day in, day out, and that will make you a very good player.”
Snyman also believes that more Associate and Affiliate countries need to have the opportunity to play the longer format of the game as he believes it improves the skills of a cricketer.
“Emerging countries like Uganda need to play more of the longer version of the sport. The late Bob Woolmer encouraged Associate players to play a lot more of the longer form of the game. If you play 50:50 over games, all you want to do is smash the ball out of the park, while in four-day cricket it doesn’t work that way. You have to really prepare yourself to play the longer version of the game,” he said.
“If you look at the Namibian side, the way we play one-day cricket and four-day cricket is almost the same sort of game plan. If the ball is your area, you play the shot to get the best out of the ball.
“By playing in the longer form of the game you learn how to bat. You need to play the longer version of the game to improve at the sport.” – http://iccworldcupqualifier.yahoo.net/