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Cancellation of the ODI Super League will leave us out in the cold: Ryan Campbell, Netherlands head coach

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Netherlands head coach Ryan Campbell fears that the Netherlands Cricket team will be left ‘out in the cold’ due to the COVID-19 pandemic wiping out the ICC Super League. In a passionate interview to ESPNCricinfo, Campbell talked about how hard they worked to get to this level, succeeding in the World Cricket League Championship back in 2017, and securing their place in the 13 team tournament.

“We worked bloody hard to get it to become part of this 13-team competition. If you think about it, the day that we won against Namibia [December 2017] and became the 13th team, we had to wait for the Super League to be announced and when it was going to be. Then they announced what was going to happen to the World Cricket League and the World [League Two] has been started and they’ve played a lot of rounds and we’re still waiting to play ODI cricket for the Super League.” Campbell said.

“You can imagine all the frustration if, all of a sudden, all the countries who have all the money then turn around and say, ‘Oh no, we need to play our own home series and make more money and leave us out,’ because we literally would be out in the cold,” he added.

The former Australia and Western Warriors wicketkeeper batsman said that it would be more than just a mistake to scrap the Super League and ask the Netherlands to wait possibly the length of a whole World Cup cycle (four years) to play ODIs again. He said, “We can’t rejoin the World Cricket League because that’s already well in advance, and if we can’t play the Super League, can you imagine leaving a country like us which has worked bloody hard and I think everyone would agree, we’re a good team, to play zero ODI cricket [Netherlands played two ODIs each against Nepal and Zimbabwe in 2018 & 2019] for a period that would stretch to about four years? That’s not just a mistake. That’s almost criminal. So let’s hope that common sense prevails and we go, ‘We’re gonna stick to the Super League.’ It was brought up for a very good reason, to give credence to ODI cricket, and let’s work it out. I just hope people don’t forget about the Dutch.”

“This year was supposed to be a very exciting year for Dutch cricket but now we don’t know anything. The first chance that we may be able to play is [the ODI tour to] Zimbabwe in September.” Campbell said.

Netherlands will have to host four teams before the Super League ends in March 2022. Three of them, England, Ireland and West Indies, are all set to visit in 2021. That just leaves the postponed Pakistan series from this summer and Campbell wants to do all he can to make sure it happens. “If it means we have to go to Pakistan, then we’ll do it. We’re willing to go wherever we need to go.”

The Netherlands were scheduled to have a training camp in Spain earlier in the month of March, followed by a tour to Namibia for a 6 match ODI and T20I series at the end of the month. Due to the pandemic spreading, both the camp and tour were cancelled. The Namibia tour was meant to be the commencement of their preparation to be a part of the T20 World Cup in October.
Campbell, who also played for Hong Kong in the T20 World Cup back in 2016, told that he is in talks with Namibia coach and former South African domestic teams Dolphins and Titans wicketkeeper Pierre de Bruyn with a view to facilitate some cricket, once the border restrictions are lifted.

“If that means we just jump on a plane and go somewhere to play… I’m talking to Pierre de Bruyn, I’m talking to my mates in Hong Kong, they understand how to deal with issues. They’ve been through SARS and been through this. Going to Hong Kong might be an option for us. If the World Cup proceeds on time, then we’ll be ready. If it’s delayed, then we’ll proceed with other plans,” he concluded.

team will be left ‘out in the cold’ due to the COVID-19 pandemic wiping out the ICC Super League. In a passionate interview to ESPNCricinfo, Campbell talked about how hard they worked to get to this level, succeeding in the World Cricket League Championship back in 2017, and securing their place in the 13 team tournament.

“We worked bloody hard to get it to become part of this 13-team competition. If you think about it, the day that we won against Namibia [December 2017] and became the 13th team, we had to wait for the Super League to be announced and when it was going to be. Then they announced what was going to happen to the World Cricket League and the World [League Two] has been started and they’ve played a lot of rounds and we’re still waiting to play ODI cricket for the Super League.” Campbell said.

“You can imagine all the frustration if, all of a sudden, all the countries who have all the money then turn around and say, ‘Oh no, we need to play our own home series and make more money and leave us out,’ because we literally would be out in the cold,” he added.

ALSO READ: The what, when, how of the ICC Cricket World Cup Super League?

The former Australia and Western Warriors wicketkeeper batsman said that it would be more than just a mistake to scrap the Super League and ask the Netherlands to wait possibly the length of a whole World Cup cycle (four years) to play ODIs again. He said, “We can’t rejoin the World Cricket League because that’s already well in advance, and if we can’t play the Super League, can you imagine leaving a country like us which has worked bloody hard and I think everyone would agree, we’re a good team, to play zero ODI cricket [Netherlands played two ODIs each against Nepal and Zimbabwe in 2018 & 2019] for a period that would stretch to about four years? That’s not just a mistake. That’s almost criminal. So let’s hope that common sense prevails and we go, ‘We’re gonna stick to the Super League.’ It was brought up for a very good reason, to give credence to ODI cricket, and let’s work it out. I just hope people don’t forget about the Dutch.”

“This year was supposed to be a very exciting year for Dutch cricket but now we don’t know anything. The first chance that we may be able to play is [the ODI tour to] Zimbabwe in September.” Campbell said.

Netherlands will have to host four teams before the Super League ends in March 2022. Three of them, England, Ireland and West Indies, are all set to visit in 2021. That just leaves the postponed Pakistan series from this summer and Campbell wants to do all he can to make sure it happens. “If it means we have to go to Pakistan, then we’ll do it. We’re willing to go wherever we need to go.”

The Netherlands were scheduled to have a training camp in Spain earlier in the month of March, followed by a tour to Namibia for a 6 match ODI and T20I series at the end of the month. Due to the pandemic spreading, both the camp and tour were cancelled. The Namibia tour was meant to be the commencement of their preparation to be a part of the T20 World Cup in October.
Campbell, who also played for Hong Kong in the T20 World Cup back in 2016, told that he is in talks with Namibia coach and former South African domestic teams Dolphins and Titans wicketkeeper Pierre de Bruyn with a view to facilitate some cricket, once the border restrictions are lifted.

“If that means we just jump on a plane and go somewhere to play… I’m talking to Pierre de Bruyn, I’m talking to my mates in Hong Kong, they understand how to deal with issues. They’ve been through SARS and been through this. Going to Hong Kong might be an option for us. If the World Cup proceeds on time, then we’ll be ready. If it’s delayed, then we’ll proceed with other plans,” he concluded.