End of a cricket era for Canada

RICHARD MAUNTAH, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:29 PM ET

The World Cup was a mixed bag for Canada.

A nice win over Kenya and a poor outing against Zimbabwe were draped around some good moments and some trying moments for the inexperienced associate nation against the best in the world.

“Our bowlers did a fantastic job throughout the tournament,” captain Ashish Bagai said. “But our batting let us down in the first half and it was very hard for us to recover in the second half.”

After Canada was defeated Wednesday by defending champion Australia, the Canadian players all saved a congratulatory hug for John Davison, who made this his final match after announcing his retirement on Tuesday. The 40-year-old who was born in Campbell River, B.C., made 14 runs off 12 balls, took one wicket, and made the catch to send Ricky Ponting on his way. A life-long resident of Australia, he will continue his coaching duties there.

But as the man who has been Canada’s most recognizable name in the cricket world exits, it’s up to some promising kids to carry the program forward. Hiral Patel, Zubin Surkari, Jimmy Hansra, and Nitish Kumar, who all had roles in Wednesday’s match, lead the transition of Canada’s national team from one depending exclusively on cricketers trained elsewhere, to one where players trained at home can compete at the highest level.

“We have some young guys on the side,” Bagai said. “The guys got some self-belief out of this tournament. Patel and Hansra had some good spells out of this so hopefully they’ll be able to take something away from the experience.”

Unfortunately, it isn’t known yet what direction the team will be going. It has a string of associate tournaments and there will be some additional twenty20 opportunities coming. But with the ICC planning a test nations-only World Cup in 2015, Canada’s next chance at the sport’s highest level may not be coming for a while.


Videos

Photos