|World Cricket League Division 5, Singapore, February 2012|
Singapore seal promotion as they thrash Argentina
ICC Media Release
At the famous Singapore Cricket Club, host Singapore took on relegation-bound Argentina in a match that was something of a David versus Goliath.
Prior to the match beginning, the two sides gathered with the match officials for a minute of silence in a sign of solidarity for the recent train crash in the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires, from where the majority of the Argentina team hail.
When proceedings began, Singapore’s in-form batting duo of birthday boy Chetan Suryawanshi and Anish Param both departed early from the party leaving Chaminda Ruwan and Kshitij Shinde to make the majority of the runs for the host in the blazing morning sun.
The side featured a changed batting line-up with the inclusion of some of the reserves for the final round-robin game – a decision that coach Trevor Chappell may have regretted, especially when veteran batsman Munish Arora departed for just six runs after edging the ball to Argentine wicketkeeper Hernan Williams. However, Chris Janik’s cameo 33 runs at six and Pramodh Raja’s 17 at number eight would have restored the former Australian international cricketer’s beliefs in his reserves.
Argentina proved athletic in the field, with captain Esteban MacDermott claiming one wicket but also being a key hand in two run-outs, Param and Janik, both key batsmen for the Singaporeans. But the Argentines once again gave away too many runs and ultimately were left to chase down 240.
In reply, Singapore’s star bowler Shoib Razzak once again showed his mettle, the 34-year-old medium pacer claiming four wickets including key scalps of opener Grant Dugmore and Matias Paterlini. Raja also proved a good addition, the 31-year-old fast bowler dismissing opener Lucas Paterlini as well as MacDermott the pinch-hitter of the Argentina side.
Argentina was skittled for just 93 runs against a superior bowling and fielding attack and thus sealed its fate of relegation into Pepsi ICC WCL Div. 6, a place MacDermott admitted the side needed to rebuild from: “We are disappointed at being relegated out of Division 5, however we knew this week was going to be tough for us and it’s shown us where we are struggling.
“We need to go back to Argentina, to look at our cricket and see how we can improve and bring new faces and youth into the game and continue to develop and grow as a side.”
Singapore captain Saad was delighted with the team’s win but keen to complete the tournament with a victory over Malaysia in tomorrow’s final: “Firstly, I’m pleased we have secured promotion to Division 4 which was our main goal of this tournament.
“I was pleased with our bowling today, I think Shoib once again showed how important he is in the Singapore bowling line-up. Shinde and Chaminda scored runs today but we all need to pull together ahead of tomorrow when we face Malaysia. It would be a great end to the tournament if we were to win at home and to beat Malaysia, especially having lost to them in the league stage of the tournament.”