Garon Park hosts international cricket as the Netherlands make triumphant return

Brian Jeeves

GARON PARK, the home ground of Old Southendian & Southchurch, once again staged international cricket this week as The Netherlands ‘A’ team and Jersey met in a series of four matches at the seaside venue.

“We are always here to play some good cricket,” Dutch Head Coach, Ryan Campbell, told Yellow Sport. 

“The opportunity arose for us to play against Jersey, who have just qualified for the World Cup qualifiers as well as going into Division Three of the World Cricket League. They want to play some good, hard, solid cricket and we are very keen on our ‘A’team to be playing as much as possible.

“The timing was just perfect and it was a bit easier coming to our beloved Garon Park, which is somewhere in the middle for both countries.”

First up, back-to-back T20 matches. Stef Myburgh hit a stylish 108, while skipper, Scott Edwards added a useful 44 as the Dutch posted a competitive 191/3.

And that proved to be ample as the Netherlands attack made swift inroads. Vikram Singh with 3/34 doing the lion’s share of the damage, while Sebastian Braat and Mass Hoornweg took two apiece.

Corey Bisson offered decent resilience, scoring 63 as the Channel Islanders reached 120/9 – However, they never really appear in the hunt and completed their overs 72 runs shy of the target. 

The Dutch completed a day-one double, recording a three-wicket success when the sides swiftly turned around.

Bisson again provided the fireworks with the bat for Jersey, finishing unbeaten on 73 as his side posted 192/3. But once again, his efforts were in vain as the Netherland successfully chased down that tally with one delivery to spare – Tony Staal still there at the conclusion on 57* while Singh chipped in with 47 in what was a compelling contest.

Tuesday saw the two sides meet in a 50-over match. Jersey reduced the Dutch to 229 – Adam Wiffen top-scoring with 61 – Singh (57) and Myburgh (47) also amongst the runs. Dominic Blampied, Nick Greenwood and Elliot Miles each taking three wickets for Jersey.

Braat and Clayton Floyd continued the three-wicket trend as Holland claimed a 56-run victory. Jenner offering some resilience with an impressive half-century for Jersey. 

The mini-series concluded with a third T20 fixture and a fourth win for the Netherlands.  

Singh hit 75 and Wiffen 50 of Holland’s 197/4 tally. And despite 58 off 28 balls from Bisson, Jersey was beaten by 55-runs. Clayton Floyd, Braat and Viv Kingma each took two wickets for the victors. 

Campbell believed his squad had made good use of their time in Southend, particularly with a packed schedule hovering just over the horizon: “It has been pretty well documented that unfortunately ‘The Slam’ got cancelled, which was going to take up a big part of our preparation leading into the World Cup qualifiers. That’s not perfect, but we are finding ways to get around that and play more cricket.

“It’s going to be a busy couple of years for us. The Super League starts next year. We start against Pakistan, which is going to be exciting. Hopefully, we can qualify for the T20 World Cup which will be next year in Australia as well.

“Lots to look forward to, that’s for sure. And I think the boys are enjoying it as well.

On returning to Southend, Campbell added: “Absolutely, we always enjoy coming here. We always try to put that week in here, playing against the counties, and the Essex 2nd XI has always been top of our list.

“I’m sure that is in the planning. It is a great facility for us to use and it is also so easy for us to fly into Southend. We are here in 40 minutes. It takes me less time to get here than it does getting to some of the grounds in Holland. We’ll be back – I’ve no doubts about that.”

The Netherlands: Stef Myburgh, Adam Wiffen Vikram Singh, Bas de Leede, Saqib de Zulfiqar, Tony Staal, Scott Edwards (WK) (Capt), Clayton Floyd, Sebastian Braat, Viv Kingma, Mass Hoornweg, Wes Barresi, Hidde Overdijk.

Jersey: Harrison Carlyon, Nick Ferraby, Nick Greenwood, John Jenner, Corey Bisson, Dominic Blampied (Capt), Zak Tribe, Elliot Corbell (WK), Julius Summeraver, Elliot Miles, Will Robertson, Dan Birrell

The Netherlands ‘A’ team (orange and blue) line up alongside Jersey following their four-match series at Garon Park, Southend

Brian Jeeves