Report by Arjun Vinod
The Swiss U19s finished in a respectable 3rd place at the 2015 U19s European 5 nations tournament that took place in Belgium from Tuesday 11th - Saturday 15th August in Belgium.
Switzerland beat Luxembourg at Antwerp and eventual winners, Germany, at Waterloo, while losing to Belgum & France in their four 50 over matches.
Luxembourg U19s 166-10 (47.0 overs) lost to Switzerland U19s 247-10 (44.0 overs) by 79 runs
Tuesday 13th August at Antwerp, Belgium
Switzerland won the toss and chose to bat on a warm and sunny day in this 50 over match. Aidan A and Arjun V had an opening partnership of 52 before Arjun V was caught at point and the next two
batsmen fell soon after. However Aidan A and Jai S steadied the innings with a crucial 66 runs partnership. Both the batsmen got out soon after a well played half century, Aidan A (54) and Jai S
(55). A quick 37 from Ruwan J and a 27 runs 10th wicket partnership from Ruan K and Nicholas H brought Switzerland to a defendable total of 247.
Switzerland came on the field high on confidence and bowled in the same aggressive spirit. Wickets fell on regular interval and Switzerland was on top throughout the innings. Luxembourg finally was bowled out for 166 and Switzerland won by 81 runs in their first match of the tournament. Excellent bowling display from the Swiss bowlers:
Arjun V (10-1-38-3), Marishque P (3-1-7-2), Ashwin V (10-1-30-2), Osama M (10-1-38-2) and Jai S (8-0-25-1).
Switzerland U19s 121-10 (38.2 overs) lost to France U19s 124-2 (15.4 overs) by 8 wkts
Wednesday 14th August at Waterloo, Belgium
The second day Switzerland faced the defending champions France. Switzerland once again won the toss and elected to bat. Switzerland got off to a very bad start losing 4 wickets after 11 overs
with a score of 23. Ashwin V and Osama M played sensibly and had a partnership of 59 runs before Osama M got out in the 25th over. The remaining 5 wickets fell at short intervals and Switzerland
was all out for 121. Osama M and Ashwin V were the only batsmen with two digits score, scoring 46 and 26 respectively.
Switzerland got off to a good start in their second innings getting 2 early wickets. However one of their opener went on to make 72* and sealed a comfortable 8 wicket win for France. Jai S (3-1-13-1) and Osama M (4-0-29-1) took the only two wickets for Switzerland.
Belgium U19s 283-10 (45.4 overs) defeated Switzerland U19s 137-10 (38.0 overs) by 146 runs
Thursday 15th August at Antwerp, Belgium
Belgium won the toss this time and elected to bat. Switzerland got an early breakthrough in the 3rd over, restricting Belgium for only 7 runs. Switzerland continued their good work reducing
Belgium for 101 for the loss of 4 wickets. Nonetheless a 97 runs partnership brought momentum back towards the Belgians and went to put up a big total of 283. However some outstanding bowling
from Jai S helped Switzerland to wrap-up the middle and lower order and finished with superb bowling figures of (9-0-68-5). Osama M (9-1-48-2), Arjun V (6-0-25-1), Ashwin V (8-1-48-1), Jack D
Switzerland came in to bat with a big target to chase and things went from bad to worse as wickets fell regularly. However captain Ashwin V played some sensible cricket keeping his wicket till the end hoping to build a partnership but he finally ran out of partners. He top scored with a well played 41 and Switzerland were all out for only 138.
Switzerland U19s 210-10 (46.1 overs) defeated Germany U19s 163-10 (34.2 overs) by 47 runs
Friday 16th August at Waterloo, Belgium
The last match against an unbeaten German team was a must win for Switzerland to have any chance to be in the final. Switzerland won the toss and opted to bat. A new opening pair turned out to be
a great decision as both Aidan A and Ruan K built up a solid 63 runs partnership before both were dismissed on 31 and 21 runs respectively. Unfortunately the next three batsmen had a short stay
at the crease and Switzerland were struggling at 86 for 5. However, Osama M and Marishque P added another 37 runs before Osama M got out on a well deserved 30. Little contribution were made by
the remaining batsmen, but fortunately for Switzerland Marishque P held his nerves and played till the 48th over to bring Switzerland to a defendable score of 210 runs. Marishque P played a match
saving knock of 58 before getting run out from a throw in the deep.
Switzerland were confident that they could bowl out the German batting order and things started coming their way right from the first ball as a clean throw from the deep to the bowler’s end by Ashwin V saw the batsman short of his ground. This wicket was a moral boost for the Swiss players and soon the Germans found themselves surrounded by a loud and determined Swiss team. The second wicket fell in the same over from a great out-swinger from Osama M that saw the edge reach the keeper. On the other side, captain Ashwin V was rewarded with a wicket in his first over as the in-swinger sent the bails flying. Osama M provided the fourth wicket as the edge carried to the slip and was safely caught by Nicholas H. Germany were in real danger now as they were reduced to 27 for 4. Their number four batsman was still at the crease scoring at a threatening rate and a 43 runs partnership put pressure back on Switzerland. However Arjun V provided the breakthrough, flying the ball outside off-stump as he saw the batsman coming down the track and keeper, Callum H, collected the ball cleanly and broke the stumps before the batsman could make it back to the crease. Unfortunately, rain started to pour soon after the wicket and covers were on. Match was on halt for around 20 minutes before the sun came back shining and covers were off. Although the match resumed, the outfield was wet which made it harder for Switzerland to field. However, three more wickets fell after the break, provided by Arjun V, Jai S and Ashwin V, before we could witness a superb fielding display by Ruwan J to run out their number ten batsman with a dive and throw to Ashwin V who had to come back quickly from his bowling follow through. With the last wicket remaining and their number four batsman still at the crease , it was important for Switzerland to finish it off as soon as possible in case the net run rate might play role in the final stages of the tournament. Jai S came on to bowl his fifth over and got the final and much awaited wicket of their top scorer (81) with a terrific yorker at the stumps which saw all the Swiss players and supporters jump in happiness and pride. Germany was all out for 163 and Switzerland won the match by 47 runs. This was by far the best bowling and fielding display by Switzerland in this tournament.
Jai S (4.2-0-26-2), Ashwin V (10-1-36-2), Arjun V (10-1-37-2), Osama M (9-1-51-2).
Switzerland did not have a match on the final day unless they qualified for the final. The match between Luxembourg and Belgium was called off due to rain which meant that Switzerland cemented a place in the top three. However, if France beat Germany, then Switzerland would be qualified for the final against France. Unfortunately, France lost to Germany on a low scoring T20 game and Germany went on to win the tournament as the final was called off because of rain. Switzerland was ranked third ahead of Belgium and Luxembourg but the boys should be very proud of themselves as they have played some really good cricket throughout the week. Four days of 50 over match is not an easy task, but they have fought till the end and have achieved a record third place for Switzerland.
Jai S has been awarded as the best bowler of the tournament with 9 wickets in four matches and should be proud of himself with the way he has led the bowling attack from the front.
|3||Sayeed Hakim Karimi||Germany|
|Most valuable player|
Officials for the tournament have been named as follows: