Opinion: How the world cup went for the associates…..
I would like to rank how the world cup went for the 6 associates. I will not talk about Ireland. It is a given that it went best for this associate team by a margin, getting them in the world headlines, getting a lot of press for Trent Johnston, Rankin and the O Brien brothers.
I think next in line was Canada. They lost to Kenya, but they ended up making a match out of the games against NZ and England, the latter being quite interesting till about the 35th over of the second innings.
Kenya would be third. They were in with a chance to make the super 8s and needed a victory against England to do so. They were not able to put up a good total, thanks to some sloppy running. But they did take some early English wickets, and then dropped some crucial catches to lose the game. Their game against NZ was forgettable, and I think that the 2003 semi finalists didnt really want to come to the World Cup to just beat Canada. So they get edged out by Canada.
The other 3 had a terrible outing. It is difficult to rank them, so lets do what we can.
What is clear is that both in terms of perception, and in terms of performance, Scotland had the worst time. Not only were they never in any game even for 10 mins, but that included the game against Netherlands, their fellow associates. So they would get the last spot. This is also because Scotland were considered to be, arguably, the best associate around.
Between Netherlands and Bermuda, its a toss up. Both got anhilated by the strongest teams in their group. Bermuda’s third group team was also a test team, and as luck would have it, they had 1 billion supporters for that match. Saleem Mukaddem bowled as well as you would see any ODI bowler bowling on that day, and did get Bermuda in with a realistic chance. They eventually lost the match, but they did make it into an interesting one. One should remember that it was a 20/20 game. I would say that Netherlands probably edges Bermuda out in this case. At least Netherlands beat another team.
Final rankings about how they fared in the WC: