Punjab ruling raises questions ahead of ALV

Bertus de Jong 29/11/18


The KNCB’s Commissie van Beroep (appeals committee) ruled in favour of Punjab Rotterdam CC this week in their long-running dispute with the KNCB over questions of player eligibility. The ruling would appear to critically undermine the board’s current rules governing the participation of overseas players in the Dutch domestic competition.

The dispute originially arose early last season, precipitated by Punjab’s selection of Belgian nationals Mamoon Latif and Ali Raza, who were deemed overseas players under Article 12 of the Competitiereglement, to represent the club’s first XI in the Topklasse.

Ali Raza
Ali Raza in action for Punjab

The KNCB initially imposed a number of sanctions on the club, including awarding their match against ACC to the Amsterdam club by default, imposing a 6-point penalty as well as threatening fines. Punjab contended that as EU nationals Latif and Raza were entitled to equal treatment under EU law, and that they could not be counted toward the quota of 2 overseas players in the side, and continued to field the pair throughout the season.

The matter was first referred to the Tuchtcommissie, who in June nominally ruled in the KNCB’s favour, but scrapped the board’s competitive penalties and imposed a fine of a mere € 126 on Punjab -the lightest possible penalty – hinting that the rules themselves might not accord with Dutch or European law.

The KNCB duly appealed the decision, but last week the Commissie van Beroep sided decisively with Punjab. The CvB ruled that Article 12 of the Competitiereglemen amounted to discrimination on the basis of nationality and was consequently unlawful. Crucially, they based their ruling not on EU law but on the Dutch Algemene wet gelijke behandeling (general equal treatmenet act) thus seeming to preclude not only discrimination against EU passport-holders but any direct restriction on the basis of nationality whatsoever.

The current two-player limit for overseas players in the Topklasse applies to any non-Netherlands passport-holder with the exception of those players who have participated in a domestic league in the Netherlands in three of the preceding four years and played a minimum of 8 matches in the immediately preceding season. Lifting that restriction for EU citizens might not have caused undue disruption given that the Dutch season naturally coincides with the domestic seasons of its European neighbours, and there are moreover comparatively few cricketers in the rest of continental Europe likely to have a significant impact at Topklasse level.

This week’s ruling, however, would seem to open the door to an unlimited number of players from further afield turning out in the Dutch competition, threatening to crowd out local talent, a prospect provoking dismay on social media.

The KNCB do not appear to have been caught entirely unawares by the ruling however, and were already planning to amend the rules for the coming season; “we’ll be looking at moving to a system more in line with the approach they take in Scotland and Ireland for 2019” KNCB secretary Robert Vermeulen told TKcricket earlier this year. The board is understood to have consulted with clubs regarding potential changes to the overseas player rules even before the ruling was published last week, and is expected to present its proposals at the KNCB’s Algemene Ledenvergadering (general members meeting) scheduled for the 15th of this month.

Scorecard | Punjab vs Quick | 26.08.18

Punjab I Vs Quick Haag I
1-Innings Match Played At Zomercomplex, Rotterdam, 26-Aug-2018, Topklasse
Quick Haag I Win by 58 runs
Round 18
Toss won by Quick Haag I
Umpires HM Butt – R Kaulingfreks
Scorers N Mohammed – S van der Vlekken
Home Side Punjab I
Points Awarded Quick Haag I 2, Punjab I 0
Quick Haag I 1st Innings 233/10 All Out (Overs 49.4)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
JG Bista* c M Bajwa b Mubashar Hussain 1 4 0 0
SB Davey b AK Bamunusinghe 83 88 11 1
TJB Landheer c A Raza b S Tariq 1 10 0 0
GMC Mol c AK Bamunusinghe b R Faiz 41 56 5 1
GN Trappenburg lbw b R Faiz 11 25 1 1
S Ekelmans+ b S Tariq 8 31 0 0
D Vierling lbw b Mubashar Hussain 44 50 8 0
E Schiferli c SJ Myburgh b S Tariq 3 9 0 0
LW Stokkers c Mubashar Hussain b M Latif 11 22 0 0
MB van Schelven not out 2 2 0 0
TC de Mooij run out 0 1 0 0
extras (b0 lb10 w15 nb3) 28
TOTAL 10 wickets for 233
FOW
1-7(JG Bista) 2-12(TJB Landheer) 3-132(GMC Mol) 4-154(SB Davey) 5-154(GN Trappenburg) 6-187(S Ekelmans) 7-191(E Schiferli) 8-230(D Vierling) 9-232(LW Stokkers) 10-233(TC de Mooij)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 10 0 41 3
Mubashar Hussain 10 0 43 2 1
JRR Farid 3 0 30 0 2 1
AK Bamunusinghe 10 2 33 1 2
R Faiz 10 2 45 2 3
M Latif 3.4 0 21 1 2 2
M Bajwa 3 0 10 0
Punjab I 1st Innings 175/10 All Out (Overs 34)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh c LW Stokkers b SB Davey 0 1 0 0
AK Bamunusinghe c D Vierling b E Schiferli 16 32 2 1
Mudassar Hussain c S Ekelmans b JG Bista 8 30 1 0
Y Usman c GN Trappenburg b GMC Mol 27 19 3 2
A Raza+ c SB Davey b TC de Mooij 35 33 3 2
M Latif b E Schiferli 31 35 2 1
R Faiz c S Ekelmans b E Schiferli 19 9 3 1
JRR Farid run out 27 22 1 2
M Bajwa c SB Davey b TC de Mooij 5 11 0 0
Mubashar Hussain c JG Bista b MB van Schelven 1 8 0 0
S Tariq* not out 1 4 0 0
extras (b0 lb1 w4 nb0) 5
TOTAL 10 wickets for 175
FOW
1-0(SJ Myburgh) 2-24(AK Bamunusinghe) 3-37(Mudassar Hussain) 4-60(Y Usman) 5-100(A Raza) 6-130(R Faiz) 7-143(M Latif) 8-159(M Bajwa) 9-160(Mubashar Hussain) 10-175(JRR Farid)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
SB Davey 8 2 32 1 1
E Schiferli 7 2 22 3 1
JG Bista 5 0 28 1
GMC Mol 4 0 35 1 2
TC de Mooij 8 0 36 2
MB van Schelven 2 1 21 1

Scorecard | VOC vs Punjab | 19.08.18

VOC I Vs Punjab I
1-Innings Match Played At Hazelaarweg, Rotterdam, 19-Aug-2018, Topklasse
VOC I Win by 108 runs
Round 17
Toss won by VOC I
Umpires RJ Akram – ML Hancock
Scorers F van Lent – N Mohammed
Home Side VOC I
Points Awarded VOC I 2, Punjab I 0
VOC I 1st Innings 283/5 Closed (Overs 50)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SP van Lent c A Raza b F Bajwa 25 39 4 0
JD Schoonheim c A Raza b Mubashar Hussain 0 2 0 0
ZDA van Baren c F Bajwa b AK Bamunusinghe 47 70 4 0
MP O’Dowd c A Raza b F Bajwa 33 64 4 0
PM Seelaar* c SJ Myburgh b S Tariq 62 52 4 5
SA Edwards+ not out 72 61 7 1
FJ Klaassen not out 26 12 1 2
PJ Fletcher dnb
BW Hanif dnb
UF Baker dnb
CL Rutgers dnb
extras (b5 lb4 w9 nb0) 18
TOTAL 5 wickets for 283
FOW
1-4(JD Schoonheim) 2-52(SP van Lent) 3-100(ZDA van Baren) 4-125(MP O’Dowd) 5-227(PM Seelaar)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 10 0 80 1 2
Mubashar Hussain 9 0 69 1 2
F Bajwa 10 0 33 2
Asif Khan 5 0 41 0
AK Bamunusinghe 10 3 19 1 1
R Faiz 6 0 32 0
Punjab I 1st Innings 175/10 All Out (Overs 40.2)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh c PM Seelaar b MP O’Dowd 59 53 9 1
AK Bamunusinghe c SA Edwards b UF Baker 16 44 3 0
Y Usman c UF Baker b MP O’Dowd 24 46 3 0
A Raza+ c PM Seelaar b MP O’Dowd 0 4 0 0
M Latif c sub b MP O’Dowd 2 8 0 0
F Bajwa lbw b MP O’Dowd 11 16 2 0
Asif Khan c PM Seelaar b JD Schoonheim 41 35 4 2
R Faiz b MP O’Dowd 0 1 0 0
Mubashar Hussain b JD Schoonheim 6 13 1 0
M Bajwa not out 8 17 1 0
S Tariq* c SA Edwards b JD Schoonheim 2 5 0 0
extras (b0 lb2 w4 nb0) 6
TOTAL 10 wickets for 175
FOW
1-62(AK Bamunusinghe) 2-92(SJ Myburgh) 3-96(A Raza) 4-102(Y Usman) 5-112(M Latif) 6-120(F Bajwa) 7-120(R Faiz) 8-140(Mubashar Hussain) 9-169(Asif Khan) 10-175(S Tariq)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
FJ Klaassen 5 1 16 0 1
PJ Fletcher 3 0 19 0
BW Hanif 2 0 18 0
UF Baker 10 1 36 1
ZDA van Baren 5 0 19 0
MP O’Dowd 10 3 32 6 2
JD Schoonheim 5.2 1 33 3 1

Scorecard | Punjab vs Dosti | 12.08.18

Punjab I Vs Dosti United I
1-Innings Match Played At Zomercomplex, Rotterdam, 12-Aug-2018, Topklasse
Punjab I Win by 2 wkts
Round 16
Toss won by Dosti United I
Umpires AND van den Dries – J Hilhorst
Home Side Punjab I
Points Awarded Dosti United I 0, Punjab I 2
Dosti United I 1st Innings 266/8 Closed (Overs 50)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
RI Ahmed+ c AK Bamunusinghe b S Tariq 11 14 0 0
VAB Tewarie* c SJ Myburgh b AK Bamunusinghe 60 75 10 0
S Ghori run out M Bajwa 13 35 2 0
M Hafeez not out 102 98 9 4
A Davids c AK Bamunusinghe b R Faiz 0 4 0 0
M Hans lbw b AK Bamunusinghe 7 26 0 0
Vimal Tewarie b R Faiz 5 13 1 0
Asief Hoseinbaks c R Faiz b AK Bamunusinghe 10 12 1 0
W Masood c SJ Myburgh b S Tariq 0 4 0 0
Arief Hoseinbaks not out 19 18 3 0
J Kumar dnb
extras (b13 lb4 w22 nb0) 39
TOTAL 8 wickets for 266
FOW
1-35(RI Ahmed) 2-76(S Ghori) 3-116(VAB Tewarie) 4-118(A Davids) 5-156(M Hans) 6-169(Vimal Tewarie) 7-194(Asief Hoseinbaks) 8-200(W Masood)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 10 0 39 2 2
Mubashar Hussain 8 0 55 0 9
Asif Khan 5 0 47 0 2
R Qadri 7 0 34 0
R Faiz 10 2 39 2 1
AK Bamunusinghe 10 0 35 3 2
Punjab I 1st Innings 270/8 (Overs 43.1)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh c Arief Hoseinbaks b M Hans 1 2 0 0
AK Bamunusinghe lbw b A Davids 2 17 0 0
Y Usman lbw b M Hans 4 12 0 0
A Raza+ b Asief Hoseinbaks 21 16 5 0
R Qadri c S Ghori b Asief Hoseinbaks 19 26 4 0
M Latif c VAB Tewarie b Asief Hoseinbaks 100 73 14 5
Asif Khan st RI Ahmed b M Hafeez 76 80 8 5
R Faiz not out 28 30 5 1
M Bajwa b M Hafeez 0 1 0 0
Mubashar Hussain not out 0 4 0 0
S Tariq* dnb
extras (b11 lb4 w3 nb1) 19
TOTAL 8 wickets for 270
FOW
1-2(SJ Myburgh) 2-12(Y Usman) 3-16(AK Bamunusinghe) 4-52(A Raza) 5-61(R Qadri) 6-224(M Latif) 7-266(Asif Khan) 8-266(M Bajwa)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
M Hans 10 1 49 2 1
A Davids 3 2 3 1
W Masood 10 1 66 0
Asief Hoseinbaks 10 1 38 3 1
Arief Hoseinbaks 3 0 40 0 1
RI Ahmed 1 0 20 0
VAB Tewarie 2 0 22 0
M Hafeez 3 1 6 2
J Kumar 1.1 0 11 0

Scorecard | VRA vs Punjab | 05.08.18

VRA I Vs Punjab I
1-Innings Match Played At Amstelveen (VRA), 05-Aug-2018, Topklasse
VRA I Win by 76 runs
Round 15
Toss won by VRA I
Umpires RJ Akram – ML Hancock
Scorers K Holdsworth
Home Side VRA I
Points Awarded VRA I 2, Punjab I 0
VRA I 1st Innings 283/10 All Out (Overs 48.4)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
ES Szwarczynski run out 1 6 0 0
DJ ter Braak c A Raza b Mubashar Hussain 5 5 1 0
BN Cooper c AK Bamunusinghe b S Tariq 11 12 2 0
PW Borren c A Raza b R Qadri 153 126 14 1
E van den Burg* c M Latif b Asif Khan 9 27 1 0
MB Lees+ c A Raza b Mubashar Hussain 34 31 4 1
LA Turmaine c A Raza b Mubashar Hussain 6 10 1 0
QWM Gunning c Y Usman b Mubashar Hussain 7 7 1 0
MAK Raja run out 36 64 2 0
MG Dunlop run out 1 2 0 0
HG Mia not out 3 2 0 0
extras (b3 lb3 w11 nb0) 17
TOTAL 10 wickets for 283
FOW
1-6(DJ ter Braak) 2-7(ES Szwarczynski) 3-23(BN Cooper) 4-51(E van den Burg) 5-121(MB Lees) 6-135(LA Turmaine) 7-149(QWM Gunning) 8-275(PW Borren) 9-280(MAK Raja) 10-283(MG Dunlop)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 10 1 37 1 1
Mubashar Hussain 10 0 50 4 2
Asif Khan 6.4 0 42 1 1
AK Bamunusinghe 4 0 25 0 2
R Qadri 9 0 53 1 1
R Faiz 2 0 20 0 2
M Latif 2 0 18 0
M Bajwa 5 0 32 0 3
Punjab I 1st Innings 207/9 Closed (Overs 50)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh run out 27 29 5 0
AK Bamunusinghe c E van den Burg b LA Turmaine 21 48 3 0
Y Usman c MB Lees b MAK Raja 30 35 3 0
A Raza+ st MB Lees b DJ ter Braak 57 85 3 0
R Qadri c E van den Burg b PW Borren 5 16 0 0
M Latif c MB Lees b HG Mia 19 36 1 0
Asif Khan lbw b DJ ter Braak 0 6 0 0
R Faiz c QWM Gunning b MAK Raja 14 11 1 0
Mubashar Hussain c E van den Burg b DJ ter Braak 10 16 1 0
M Bajwa not out 1 12 0 0
S Tariq* not out 1 6 0 0
extras (b6 lb1 w14 nb1) 22
TOTAL 9 wickets for 207
FOW
1-39(SJ Myburgh) 2-60(AK Bamunusinghe) 3-109(Y Usman) 4-118(R Qadri) 5-172(M Latif) 6-177(Asif Khan) 7-186(A Raza) 8-194(R Faiz) 9-207(Mubashar Hussain)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
QWM Gunning 8 1 36 0 2 1
HG Mia 7 2 38 1 5
LA Turmaine 7 1 23 1 2
MG Dunlop 3 0 17 0
PW Borren 7 1 28 1 2
MAK Raja 10 0 41 2
DJ ter Braak 8 0 17 3 2

Scorecard | HCC vs Punjab | 22.07.18

HCC I Vs Punjab I
1-Innings Match Played At De Diepput, Den Haag, 22-Jul-2018, Topklasse
HCC I Win by 61 runs
Round 14
Toss won by HCC I
Umpires J Hilhorst – WPM van Liemt
Home Side HCC I
Points Awarded HCC I 2, Punjab I 0
HCC I 1st Innings 166/10 All Out (Overs 49.1)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
R Ninan c M Bajwa b Mubashar Hussain 22 37 2 2
BHG Gorlee c R Qadri b Mubashar Hussain 0 4 0 0
AJ Staal* c A Raza b BI Vorster 13 30 1 0
BE Street b R Faiz 13 31 0 0
MBS Jonkman c A Raza b AK Bamunusinghe 10 33 0 0
HC Overdijk c A Raza b S Tariq 47 69 2 1
JZ-X van Kessel c A Raza b R Qadri 2 23 0 0
DL Walhain c Y Usman b R Qadri 1 2 0 0
AA Qasim c SJ Myburgh b Mubashar Hussain 42 63 2 1
LJF Lagas+ run out 1 1 0 0
RR Bijloos not out 1 4 0 0
extras (b1 lb3 w10 nb0) 14
TOTAL 10 wickets for 166
FOW
1-2(BHG Gorlee) 2-28(AJ Staal) 3-38(R Ninan) 4-67(MBS Jonkman) 5-67(BE Street) 6-81(JZ-X van Kessel) 7-83(DL Walhain) 8-150(AA Qasim) 9-157(LJF Lagas) 10-166(HC Overdijk)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 7.1 1 21 1
Mubashar Hussain 10 1 44 3 2
BI Vorster 10 0 32 1 1
AK Bamunusinghe 8 1 15 1 2
R Faiz 8 0 30 1 4
R Qadri 6 0 20 2
Punjab I 1st Innings 105/10 All Out (Overs 26.2)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh c BHG Gorlee b AA Qasim 3 4 0 0
A Raza c BE Street b R Ninan 0 2 0 0
BI Vorster run out 0 1 0 0
R Qadri c HC Overdijk b AA Qasim 0 1 0 0
M Latif c MBS Jonkman b R Ninan 10 23 2 0
AK Bamunusinghe run out 0 10 0 0
Y Usman c LJF Lagas b BE Street 40 41 3 3
R Faiz c AJ Staal b HC Overdijk 17 18 0 2
M Bajwa+ not out 4 38 0 0
Mubashar Hussain run out 16 21 3 0
S Tariq* c DL Walhain b AA Qasim 2 2 0 0
extras (b0 lb2 w9 nb2) 13
TOTAL 10 wickets for 105
FOW
1-3(A Raza) 2-3(SJ Myburgh) 3-4(R Qadri) 4-5(BI Vorster) 5-13(AK Bamunusinghe) 6-27(M Latif) 7-79(Y Usman) 8-79(R Faiz) 9-103(Mubashar Hussain) 10-105(S Tariq)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
R Ninan 10 0 48 2 5
AA Qasim 4.2 0 21 3 3 1
HC Overdijk 6 1 22 1 1
BE Street 6 2 12 1 1

Scorecard | Punjab vs HBS | 15.07.18

Punjab I Vs HBS I
1-Innings Match Played At Zomercomplex, Rotterdam, 15-Jul-2018, Topklasse
HBS I Win by 5 wkts
Round 13
Toss won by Punjab I
Umpires N Bathi – R Kaulingfreks
Scorers N Mohammed – MAP Wiegers
Home Side Punjab I
Points Awarded Punjab I 0, HBS I 2
Punjab I 1st Innings 135/10 All Out (Overs 29.5)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh c F Khan b J de Mey 41 36 6 2
A Raza c TP Visée b WT Coster 0 1 0 0
BI Vorster lbw b WT Coster 0 5 0 0
R Qadri c TP Visée b BA Westdijk 9 25 2 0
M Latif c TP Visée b F Khan 9 21 1 0
AK Bamunusinghe c TP Visée b F Khan 17 30 3 0
Y Usman c FJ Vink b WT Coster 43 35 4 3
R Faiz c W Barresi b F Khan 0 2 0 0
M Bajwa+ run out 1 7 0 0
Mubashar Hussain c J de Mey b WT Coster 4 17 1 0
S Tariq* not out 1 1 0 0
extras (b0 lb4 w6 nb0) 10
TOTAL 10 wickets for 135
FOW
1-0(A Raza) 2-0(BI Vorster) 3-31(R Qadri) 4-62(SJ Myburgh) 5-82(M Latif) 6-86(AK Bamunusinghe) 7-86(R Faiz) 8-94(M Bajwa) 9-130(Y Usman) 10-135(Mubashar Hussain)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
BA Westdijk 7 1 27 1 1
WT Coster 5.5 2 28 4 1
F Khan 8 0 41 3 1
J de Mey 8 2 22 1 2
W Barresi 1 0 13 0 1
HBS I 1st Innings 141/5 (Overs 27.2)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
TP Visée*+ c A Raza b Mubashar Hussain 8 10 1 0
WT Coster c A Raza b R Qadri 23 37 3 1
SP Gomes c A Raza b BI Vorster 26 30 4 0
J Morgan c A Raza b BI Vorster 6 7 1 0
W Barresi not out 40 32 5 1
A Ahmed lbw b BI Vorster 9 14 2 0
D Coster not out 17 36 2 0
J de Mey dnb
FJ Vink dnb
BA Westdijk dnb
F Khan dnb
extras (b0 lb7 w4 nb1) 12
TOTAL 5 wickets for 141
FOW
1-9(TP Visée) 2-64(SP Gomes) 3-66(WT Coster) 4-76(J Morgan) 5-92(A Ahmed)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 6 2 22 0 1
Mubashar Hussain 5 1 21 1 1
R Qadri 4 0 34 1
BI Vorster 5 0 29 3
R Faiz 4 0 8 0
AK Bamunusinghe 3 0 13 0 2
A Raza .2 0 7 0 1

Round 13 preview

Bertus de Jong & Rod Lyall 12/07/18


We’re very much over the hump now and heading rapidly toward the business end of the season with just six games to play, and the table has duly divided itself neatly in three. At the top end VOC, HBS and VRA remain very much in the running for a shot at the title, whilst defending champions Excelsior have joined former frontrunners Dosti and Sparta, together with HCC, as near-certain also-rans this time round, and Punjab, Quick and ACC look set for a nervy relegation battle.


BdJ: A win against table-toppers VOC Rotterdam might just keep Excelsior ‘20’s hopes alive another week, but given their recent run that’s the tallest of orders and the continued absence of batting linchpin and opening bowler James Hilditch won’t help their cause. VOC have looked all-but invulnerable at fortress Hazelaarweg, where a three-wicket win over VRA has been the closest they’ve come to defeat. Both Corey Rutgers and Max O’Dowd showed they were more than capable of pulling their weight for the frontrunners last week against Quick, both notching 80+ scores despite O’Dowd carrying a gluteal niggle and Rutgers a finger fractured six ways from Sunday. With skipper Pieter Seelaar’s imperious run of form showing no signs of stalling, an away match at VOC remains the toughest proposition in the league at this point.

RL: With several key acquisitions over the winter VOC were seen as a good championship bet before the campaign started, and while they took a little while to get into their stride – and despite some misfortunes with injuries – they have evolved into a formidable unit. They still have several big matches to play, and a few weeks ago this would have been one of them: after all, Excelsior were the last team to beat them, back on 19 May. But as VOC’s star has risen Excelsior’s has waned, and it would take a significant reversal of form for the defending champions to take the points back to Schiedam. The VOC new-ball pairing of Fred Klaassen and Pierce Fletcher is another of the Rotterdammers’ trump cards, and without Hilditch the Excelsior attack looks a lot less menacing.


BdJ: Should the title-holders spring a surprise, HBS Craeyenhout are currently best placed to take advantage as they head to meet bottom-placed Punjab Rotterdam at the Zomercomplex. On paper a match-up between the second-placed HBS and bottom-placed Punjab should be a fairly easy call, but then on paper the Crows’ top order ought to be delivering regular 300+ totals. Instead against HCC last week they clung on to defend 138 in an entirely unconvincing 15-run win, and Punjab’s opening pair of Stephan Myburgh and Ali Raza demonstrated that that sort of score would be unlikely to suffice come Sunday, racking up 149 runs in an unbroken partnership against Sparta at the traditionally bowler-friendly Bermweg. That said, last week HBS were facing a bowling attack featuring two of the league’s top five wicket-takers, whilst Punjab can boast not a single bowler in the top twenty, and indeed last week was the first time they managed to take all ten wickets. It will take a remarkable turnaround in form for Punjab to contain HBS’ battery of big hitters given the short boundaries at the Zomercomplex and one suspects delivering a third victory will be beyond even the powers of Raza and Myburgh.

RL: HBS, too, have settled into a winning pattern based on a powerful top five batsmen backed up by a well-balanced attack, and showed last week that even when the former fails to deliver the latter can defend a low total. Farshad Khan has been incisive since his return to the side, and together with Berend Westdijk and Wessel Coster heads a seam department capable of troubling any batting line-up. Punjab rely more on spin, and unless they can make early inroads into that HBS top order they may find themselves chasing an awful lot of leather. It is indeed hard to see Punjab upsetting one of the main title contenders, but Rohan Qadri has certainly made a difference to the side and the Rotterdammers know that every point is vital if they are to lift themselves away from the bottom of the table.


BdJ: Third placed VRA will be hoping for upsets in both the above-mentioned games, in which case a win against Sparta 1888 at the Bos could get them to second place and just one win behind VOC. The Amsterdammers’ home record may not inspire a huge amount of confidence, and continued questions over Viv Kingma’s fitness are also a concern, nonetheless they remain marginal favourites to take two points on the day. Though Sparta won the first encounter earlier in the season, the sort of cricket played at VRA is traditionally a different beast from what one sees at Bermweg. That said, the game is far from a foregone conclusion, with the hosts’ top order in patchy form and the bowling attack likely understrength. Though Sparta have stalled rather after an impressive early run, seamers Dost Muhammed and Mudassar Bukhari remain a dangerous combination, and Michael Pollard will doubtless be looking forward to a run out on the league’s best batting wicket. Though Sparta’s three consecutive defeats in the last three games have put them pretty much out of contention for the title, they remain more than capable as acting as spoilers for VRA’s hopes too.

RL: Even without Ben Cooper and Viv Kingma VRA were impressive against an injury-weakened ACC last week, with Quirijn Gunning and Haseeb Gul Mia doing the vital early damage and spinners Adeel Raja and Leon Turmaine doing the rest. If Eric Szwarczynski has definitely put his run of poor form behind him the batting, too, will have a more solid feel, and with some of the air having escaped from Sparta’s early-season balloon the home side should go into this game with plenty of confidence. Pollard is, obviously, a potential match-winner, and so too is Warren Bell, who has not so far had the impact in the Topklasse which he had during his side’s promotion-winning run last season. It should be a good tussle, with the encounter between former international team-mates Peter Borren and Mudassar Bukhari one to savour.


BdJ: Similarly HCC find themselves more-or-less safe but solidly out of contention following back-to-back losses, a position their opponents Quick Haag will nonetheless envy. Already weakened by retirements and departures, the Hanen have been plagued by injuries, illness and unavailability issues throughout the season, and now find themselves in real danger of relegation. Still groundless, they return to De Diepput for their nominal home match against their hosts again as underdogs, though HCC’s own shaky batting will give them some hope, as will the form of Quick overseas Jay Bista. The mumbaiker’s near-chanceless 124 against VOC last week consolidated his claim to the title of best player in the competition, and even the impressive collection of scalps dangling from the belts of Hidde Overdijk and Ali Ahmed Qasim are unlikely to faze him. The fitness of his fellow overseas Sean Davey remains doubtful, however, and as events last week again demonstrated it’s pretty tough to win a Topklasse match on your own.

RL: This is probably the toughest game to tip about this week, given the evident vulnerability of both sides, especially with the bat. Overdijk and Qasim can be a very effective pairing, as their demolition of Sparta demonstrated, and the dismissal of HBS for 138 should give Quick – and any other visitors to De Diepput – pause. Bista is obviously a key factor, and HCC will be hoping that Ryan Ninan, who has had a lean season so far, will rise to the challenge and have at least a great an impact on this match. They also need Tonny Staal and Bryce Street to deliver with the bat, while Quick will be looking to the experience of the likes of Geert Maarten Mol and Lesley Stokkers to give Bista the support he needs. If I were going to break the unanimity of this week’s predictions this is where I would do it, but on balance I tend to go with m’colleague and predict a home win.


BdJ: It will be a similar situation at Drieburg where hosts Dosti-United are safely ensconced in the mid-table whilst visitors ACC are barely more than one defeat away from the wooden spoon spot. A washout against Excelsior means ACC are just a hair above Quick on points average, but nonetheless they’ll be desperate to put some more distance between themselves and their relegation rivals. Though likely the more motivated of the two teams, they remain underdogs when they head across the Amstel, especially if they are again unable to field a full complement of Zulfiqars. With Dosti coming off the back of a comfortable win against (an admittedly under-strength) Excelsior and Taru Kohli still in flying form with the bat and now in the wickets as well, two points will take some getting at Drieburg.

RL: ACC have been the Jekyll and Hyde of this season’s Topklasse, and much will depend on which of the two incarnations turns up at Sportpark Drieburg. A young and inexperienced team, they are desperately dependent on a good start, and with Anees Davids back in the Dosti line-up the home side are well placed to deny it to them. Their own top order has also been inconsistent, especially on the rare occasions when Kohli has failed to deliver, but ACC’s bowling is their weaker department, and they really missed the injured Sikander Zulfiqar against VRA last week. But if Richardt Frenz and the Zulfiqars who do play stay around for a while, Dosti may need to be at their best to take the points.


BdJ’s tips: VOC, HBS, VRA, HCC, Dosti.
RL’s tips: VOC, HBS, VRA, HCC, Dosti.

Scorecard | Sparta vs Punjab | 08.07.18

Sparta I Vs Punjab I
1-Innings Match Played At Sportpark Bermweg, Capelle a/d IJssel, 08-Jul-2018, Topklasse
Punjab I Win by 10 wkts
Round 12
Toss won by Punjab I
Umpires ML Hancock – DJ Kalloe
Home Side Sparta I
Points Awarded Sparta I 0, Punjab I 2
Sparta I 1st Innings 148/10 All Out (Overs 48.2)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
WE Bell lbw b S Tariq 8 9 1 0
CP Ambrose c M Bajwa b Mubashar Hussain 0 2 0 0
TIM de Kok c A Raza b S Tariq 10 18 1 0
MA Pollard c S Tariq b M Latif 74 112 3 0
M Bukhari b S Tariq 0 6 0 0
AF Buurman+ b Mubashar Hussain 0 3 0 0
JM Snoep* b BI Vorster 7 54 0 0
D Muhammed lbw b BI Vorster 6 27 0 0
MU Ishfaq c Mubashar Hussain b SJ Myburgh 19 37 0 0
U Saleem b SJ Myburgh 10 15 1 0
MB Hoornweg not out 4 7 0 0
extras (b2 lb1 w7 nb0) 10
TOTAL 10 wickets for 148
FOW
1-7(CP Ambrose) 2-9(WE Bell) 3-28(TIM de Kok) 4-28(M Bukhari) 5-29(AF Buurman) 6-55(JM Snoep) 7-70(D Muhammed) 8-121(MU Ishfaq) 9-136(MA Pollard) 10-147(U Saleem)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 10 2 23 3
Mubashar Hussain 10 1 38 2 3
R Qadri 10 3 24 0 1
BI Vorster 10 1 20 2
AK Bamunusinghe 3 0 15 0
SJ Myburgh 3.2 0 18 2 3
M Latif 2 0 7 1
Punjab I 1st Innings 149/0 (Overs 29.4)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh not out 85 100 7 2
A Raza not out 59 78 3 0
Mudassar Hussain dnb
AK Bamunusinghe dnb
R Qadri dnb
BI Vorster dnb
M Latif dnb
Y Usman dnb
Mubashar Hussain dnb
M Bajwa+ dnb
S Tariq* dnb
extras (b0 lb1 w4 nb0) 5
TOTAL 0 wickets for 149
FOW
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
M Bukhari 6 0 21 0 1
WE Bell 5 0 22 0 1
D Muhammed 3 0 16 0
U Saleem 3 0 15 0
TIM de Kok 2 0 15 0
JM Snoep 3 0 18 0 1
MB Hoornweg 4.4 0 25 0 1
MA Pollard 3 0 16 0

Scorecard | Punjab vs ACC | 01.07.18

Punjab I Vs ACC I
1-Innings Match Played At Zomercomplex, Rotterdam, 01-Jul-2018, Topklasse
ACC I Win by 30 runs
Round 11
Toss won by ACC I
Umpires AND van den Dries – J Hilhorst
Home Side Punjab I
Points Awarded ACC I 2, Punjab I 0
ACC I 1st Innings 321/2 Closed (Overs 50)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
RH Frenz c AK Bamunusinghe b BI Vorster 35 46 5 0
R Zulfiqar c Y Usman b Mubashar Hussain 22 21 3 0
AA Zulfiqar+ not out 97 111 8 0
SA Zulfiqar* not out 150 124 11 5
SR Rasool dnb
MA Raza dnb
Ahmed Zulfiqar dnb
DJ Botha dnb
A Kumar dnb
S Potdar dnb
W Alim dnb
extras (b0 lb4 w11 nb2) 17
TOTAL 2 wickets for 321
FOW
1-48(R Zulfiqar) 2-74(RH Frenz)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
S Tariq 10 0 68 0 2
Mubashar Hussain 10 0 68 1 5
BI Vorster 10 0 49 1
R Qadri 8 0 63 0 2 1
AK Bamunusinghe 5 0 24 0
Asif Khan 2.3 0 10 0 1
M Latif 4.3 0 35 0 1
Punjab I 1st Innings 291/10 All Out (Overs 47.4)
Batsman Fieldsman Bowler Runs Bls 4s 6s
SJ Myburgh c SR Rasool b SA Zulfiqar 51 40 7 2
A Raza c R Zulfiqar b SA Zulfiqar 29 31 4 0
AK Bamunusinghe c R Zulfiqar b Ahmed Zulfiqar 0 3 0 0
BI Vorster lbw b Ahmed Zulfiqar 13 29 1 0
M Latif b Ahmed Zulfiqar 15 16 1 1
R Qadri c RH Frenz b MA Raza 55 63 7 0
Asif Khan c S Potdar b Ahmed Zulfiqar 15 25 1 0
Y Usman c R Zulfiqar b DJ Botha 53 40 4 3
M Bajwa+ run out 6 12 0 0
Mubashar Hussain c A Kumar b R Zulfiqar 26 27 2 1
S Tariq* not out 0 0 0 0
extras (b8 lb5 w15 nb0) 28
TOTAL 10 wickets for 291
FOW
1-83(SJ Myburgh) 2-84(AK Bamunusinghe) 3-86(A Raza) 4-108(M Latif) 5-134(BI Vorster) 6-181(Asif Khan) 7-203(R Qadri) 8-220(M Bajwa) 9-291(Y Usman) 10-291(Mubashar Hussain)
Bowler Overs Maid Runs Wkts wd nb
A Kumar 6 0 55 0 1
W Alim 3 0 26 0
DJ Botha 8 0 42 1 5
Ahmed Zulfiqar 9 1 38 4 2
SA Zulfiqar 10 0 64 2
MA Raza 10 1 43 1 2
R Zulfiqar 1.4 0 10 1 1