A third of the way through the winter break, the same fields that in the summer play host & witness to cricket across the country now lay cold & dark. But this provides us all with a chance to reflect on the previous 12 months and us to review the most popular news articles that made it to our website in 2019.
Applauded by many outside of Switzerland, the website, social media presence and monthly eNewsletter spearhead the communication of all Cricket Switzerland's efforts to develop cricket, in accordance with the association's 5 year development plan, as a sport in Switzerland.
Since gaining membership in 2017, Cricket Switzerland continue to play an active role in Swiss Olympic, attending many meetings and ensuring complete compliance with requirements necessary to satisfy membership criteria.
Membership of Swiss Olympic provides crucial financial support to develop cricket in this country and ensures compliance with the sporting principles of mainstream sports, in transparency, behavior and accountability.
The 32nd Cricket on Ice Trophy took centre stage in St Moritz in February as reported by CNN Money and Südost Schweiz TV. Disappointingly there was to be no repeat of St Moritz Ice Cricket which had attracted two teams of professionals and so much media attention the previous year.
Also at the beginning of the year, the AGM elected Aseem Dhawan to the committee, replacing Matthew Martin in his role of Sponsorship Manager. The AGM also accepted membership from Aargau Cricket Club who were to lose their mat to an act of vandalism later in the year.
On the back of the Cricket World Cup Cricket Switzerland President Alexander Mackay led a successful apéro at the British Embassy with representatives of other cricketing nations.
The youth development programme continues to inspire young people at U11, U13, U15, U17 & U19 age groups. Thanks to the dedication of our junior coaches (39 registered at the time of writing) at seven junior clubs or sections at Cossonay, Gingins, La Chat, GRYCC, ZCCC, Basel Dragons & at LAZ, we have a thriving junior section.
Club wise, Basel Dragons joined up with T20 International to run another successful junior summer cricket camp. They also ran a series of indoor tournaments in the spring at U11, U13 & U15, as did Gingins late in the year, also at U11, U13 & U15, while Cossonay organised the U11 Léman Cup & U13 Léman Cup, and La Chat & Cossonay joined fores to host the U11 Romande Cup, U13 Romande Cup & U15 Romande Cup.
The U19s featured in The Gulf Today when they lost to the Kings YTCA UAE under-18 side in two T20 matches played at the Langston Cricket Club in Leicestershire.
But the highlight though was undoubtedly the Cricket Switzerland Junior Zuoz that again proved to be a festival of cricket!
The Swiss U13s joined an international triangular in Luxemburg went on tour to Surrey, as did the U15s. There were tours to Leicester for the U11s and U13s to play in the Coloured Clothing Tournament.
Additionally, Ryan Bosshard became Switzerland's youngest qualified umpire and umpired his first game in June 2019.
The seniors disappointed internationally, only managing 3rd place in a CE 4-nation international T20 tournament in Prague against Czechia, Hungary & Latvia. This was the only international tournament planned in 2019 after spreading themselves to thinly in previous seasons.
But domestically the senior game continues to grow. Even though the beginning of the season was hampered by bad weather (there was no DBMT this year due to weather), there were still 124 competitive senior matches in the two domestic competitions (up from 100 in 2018), all well documented with all scorecards recorded in cricHQ. All games had at least one of the sixty-seven recognised umpires present.
There were also new records set in the Pickwick Twenty20: Lalit Kumar Dubey (Geneva XI Stars & Swiss National player) scored an amazing unbeaten 179 (72) against CERN CC at Les Evaux (Geneva) and Geneva XI Star's openers Raja Hafeez and Kuldeep Singh Rawat set a new record opening partnership of 204 against Geneva SL CC at Les Evaux.
Other worthy news items in senior cricket were that Zurich Lions were awarded the Spirit of Cricket Award and Cossonay celebrated their 30th Anniversary, while Berne remembered Peter MacLaverty with a memorial match in Berne.
May 2020 be even busier!