Some of the very best cricketers from ICC’s Associate and Affiliate members will assemble in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) next month when the 16-team ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier UAE 2013 (WT20Q) will be staged across six venues in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah. All 16 squads for the event, which will be staged from 15 to 30 November, have now been finalised.
At stake in the UAE will be the six available places in the ICC World Twenty20 Bangladesh 2014, which is scheduled to be played in the first half of next year.
The tournament will see the 16 sides split into two groups of eight, a total of 72 matches will be played over 15 days and the sides that top the two groups at the conclusion of the group stages will automatically qualify for Bangladesh 2014.
The sides that finish second and third in each of the two groups will play cross-over matches with the two winners also progressing to the ICC World Twenty20 2014.
The sides that finish fourth and fifth in each of the two groups will also play cross-over matches, with the winners of these two matches then playing the losers of the second v third cross-over fixtures; the victors of these matches will then also progress into the ICC World Twenty20 Bangladesh 2014.
Ireland will be defending the title it won in 2012, when it, alongside Afghanistan, qualified for the ICC World Twenty20 Sri Lanka 2012.
Ireland, which missed the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 in South Africa in 2007 but appeared in 2009, 2010 and 2012, has named a formidable side as it has retained no less than 11 players from the 2012 campaign that saw it win the last Qualifier. Returning to the UAE will be captain William Porterfield, Alex Cusack, ICC Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year 2012 George Dockrell, Trent Johnston, Ed Joyce, John Mooney, Tim Murtagh, Kevin O’Brien, Paul Stirling, Max Sorensen and Gary Wilson.
The four new faces in the Ireland squad for this event are Niall O’Brien, Andrew McBrine, James Shannon and Stuart Thompson. O’Brien is a veteran of 58 ODIs and 20 T20Is and is joined by the 20-year-old McBrine ,who featured in the recent ICC U19 Cricket World Cup in 2012.
Shannon, a 23-year-old middle-order batsman, has appeared for Ireland a handful of times while Thompson, travelled with the side to the ICC World Twenty20 Sri Lanka 2012.
Afghanistan has named 11 players in the squad who were members of the side that finished runner-up to Ireland last year in the ICC WT20Q. Captain Mohammad Nabi, along with Merwais Ashraf, Hamid Hassan, Nawroz Mangal, Gulbadin Naib, Mohammad Shahzad, Karim Sadiq, Samiullah Shinwari, Shapor Zadran, Dawlat Khan Zadran and Noor Ali Zadran will again be returning with a challenge to guide their side to its third successive ICC World Twenty20.
Peter Borren will once again lead the Netherlands, which played in the 2007 WT20 and upset England in the tournament opener at Lord’s. Other stayers from the 2012 qualifier event, where the side finished fourth, include Wesley Barresi, Mudassar Bukhari, Atse Buurman, Tim Gruijters, Ahsan Malik, Stephan Myburgh, Pieter Seelaar and Michael Swart.
While the Dutch side will be without the services of Ryan ten Doeschate, the ICC Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year in 2008, 2010 and 2011, it will be bolstered by returning all-rounder Daan van Bunge. The 31-year-old veteran has represented the men in orange in 37 ODIs and 12 T20Is.
Another popular name in the Associate and Affiliate world, Ashish Bagai of Canada, will be returning to lead the side for the Qualifier after a brief hiatus from the game.
The event will also see the return of Geraint Jones for Papua New Guinea; the 36-year-old will be representing his country of birth once again, having been born in Kundiawa, the capital of the Simbu province in PNG.
Another familiar name that will be seen around the tournament will be the assistant coach of Scotland, the former England all-rounder and current Durham captain Paul Collingwood.
The player eligibility criteria can be found by clicking HERE.
The tournament schedule can be found HERE.
Afghanistan - Mohammad Nabi (captain), Merwais Ashraf, Hamid Hassan, Amir Hamza Hotak, Afsar Khan, Nawroz Mangal, Gulbadin Naib, Mohammad Shahzad, Shafiqullah Shafaq, Karim Sadiq, Samiullah Shinwari, Najeebullah Zadran, Shapor Zadran, Dawlat Khan Zadran, Noor Ali Zadran
Bermuda - Janeiro Tucker (captain), Kamal Bashir, Derrick Brangman, Christian Burgess, Lionel Cann, Allan Douglas II, Christopher Douglas, Terryn Fray, David Hemp, Malachi Jones, Kamau Leverock, Tre Manders, Jacobi Robinson, Dion Stovell, Kwame Tucker
Canada – Ashish Bagai (captain), Havir Baidwan, Rizwan Cheema, Henry Onsinde, Damodar Daesrath, Abzal Dean, Jeremy Gordon, Ruvindu Gunasekera, Jimmy Hansra, Kenny Kamyuka, Usman Limbada, Hiral Patel, Raza Rehman, Junaid Siddiqui, Hamza Tariq
Denmark - Michael Pedersen (captain), Aftab Ahmed, Christo Botma, Basit Javed, Carsten Pedersen, Yasir Iqbal, Frederik Klokker, Pawan Kumar, Kamran Mahmood, Rizwan Mahmood, Jakob Rubin, Kasper Rubin, Bashir Shah, Hamid Shah
Hong Kong – James Atkinson (captain), Tanwir Afzal, Irfan Ahmed, Moner Ahmed, Nadeem Ahmed, Haseeb Amjad, Waqas Barkat, Mark Chapman, Babar Hayat, Aizaz Khan, Nizakat Khan, Roy Lamsam, Ali Skhawat, Kinchit Shah, Daljeet Singh
Ireland - William Porterfield (captain), Alex Cusack, George Dockrell, Trent Johnston, Ed Joyce, Andrew McBrine, John Mooney, Tim Murtagh, Kevin O’Brien, Niall O’Brien, James Shannon, Max Sorensen, Paul Stirling, Stuart Thompson, Gary Wilson
Italy – Damian Crowley (captain), Alessandro Bonora, Gareth Berg, Dilan Fernando, Madupa Fernando, Tharindu Fernando, Gayashan Munasinghe, Dinidu Marage, Andy Northcote, Vincenzo Pennazza, Joy Perera, Peter Petricola, Mick Raso, Sujith Rillagodage, Carl Sandri
Kenya - Collins Obuya (captain), Ragheb Aga, Duncan Allan, Dhiren Gondaria, Irfan Karim, Shem Ngoche, Alex Obanda, Thomas Odoyo, Nehemiah Odhiambo, Nelson Odhiambo, Elijah Otieno, Morris Ouma, Rakep Patel, Steve Tikolo, Hiren Varaiya
Namibia - Sarel Burger (captain), Stephan Baard, Gerhard Erasmus, Shalako Groenewald, Louis Klazinga, JP Kotze, Bernard Scholtz, Nicolaas Scholtz, JJ Smit, LP Van Der Westhuizen, Raymond van Schoor, Toby Vervey, Christi Viljoen, Craig Williams, Pikkie Ya France
Nepal - Paras Khadka (captain), Pradeep Airee, Binod Bhandari, Amrit Bhattarai, Mahesh Chhetri, Shakti Gauchan, Subash Khakurel, Avinash Karn, Gyanendra Malla, Anil Mandal, Jitendra Mukhiya, Sagar Pun, Basant Regmi, Sharad Vesawkar, Rahul Vishwakarma
Netherlands - Peter Borren (captain), Wesley Barresi, Mudassar Bukhari, Daan van Bunge, Atse Buurman, Ben Cooper, Tim Gruijters, Vivian Kingma, Ahsan Malik, Paul van Meekeren, Stephan Myburgh, Michael Rippon, Pieter Seelaar, Michael Swart, Eric Szwarczynski
Papua New Guinea – Chris Amini (captain), Charles Amini, Mahuru Dai, Willie Gavera, Andrew Hicks, Geraint Jones, Chris Kent, Van Vagi Morea, Kila Pala, Pipi Raho, John Reva, Assad Vala, Norman Vanua, Jack Vare , Tony Ura
Scotland – Kyle Coetzer (captain), Richie Berrington, Neil Carter, Matty Cross, Gordon Goudie, Majid Haq, Moneeb Iqbal, Michael Leask, Matt Machan, Calum MacLeod, David Murphy, Safyaan Sharif, Rob Taylor, Craig Wallace, Iain Wardlaw
Uganda - Davis Arinaitwe Karashani (captain), Hamu Kayondo Bagenda, Arthur Solomon Kyobe, Brian Masaba, Roger Mukasa, Abram Ndhlovu Mutyagaba, Phillemon Selowa Mukobe, Frank Nsubuga, Richard Gideon Okia, Raymond Otim, Patrick Ochan, Jonathan Sebanja, Henry Senyondo, Almuzahim Hamza Saleh, Charles Waiswa
United Arab Emirates – Khurram Khan (captain), Saqib Ali, Shaiman Anwar, Muhammad Azam, Nasir Aziz, Amjad Javed, Asim Kurshid, Rohan Mustafa, Muhammad Naveed, Swapnil Patil, Ahmed Raza, Abdul Shakoor, Kamran Shahzad, Shadeep Silva, Muhammad Shafiq
United States of America – Neil McGarrell (captain), Timroy Allen, Danial Ahmed, Imran Awan, Barrington Bartley, Orlando Baker, Akeem Dodson, Karan Ganesh, Muhammad Asad Ghous, Elmore Hutchinson, Steve Massiah, Japen Patel, Adam Sanford, Srinivasa Santhanam, Steven Taylor
Groups for the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier 2013
Group A – Ireland (A1), Namibia (A2), Canada (A3), Uganda (A4), USA (A5), Italy (A6), Hong Kong (A7) and the UAE (A8)
Group B – Afghanistan (B1), Netherlands (B2), Scotland (B3), Kenya (B4), Bermuda (B5), Denmark (B6), Nepal (B7) and Papua New Guinea (PNG) (B8)
Background of ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier
The ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier has grown in stature since it was first held in Belfast, Ireland, in August 2008. That event comprised the then six top Associate Members – Bermuda, Canada, Ireland, Kenya, Netherlands and Scotland.
Ireland and Netherlands shared the trophy when the final was washed out without a ball being bowled. The two sides, along with Scotland - which subsequently replaced Zimbabwe - qualified for the ICC World Twenty20 2009, which was staged in England. Pakistan won the tournament, beating Sri Lanka in the final.
The UAE hosted the second edition of the tournament in February 2010, which was contested by eight teams, the six sides having T20I status – Afghanistan, Canada, Ireland, Kenya, Netherlands and Scotland – as well as the host, UAE, and USA, which was specially invited by the ICC.
After 17 matches over six days at two venues in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Afghanistan and Ireland reached the final and qualified for the ICC World Twenty20 2010, which was staged in the West Indies and won by England. Afghanistan won the qualifying tournament when it defeated Ireland by eight wickets.
The 2012 edition was also played in the UAE, and was contested by Afghanistan, Netherlands, Canada, Papua New Guinea, Hong Kong, Bermuda, Denmark, Nepal, Ireland, Kenya, Scotland, Namibia, Uganda, Oman, Italy and USA.
The tournament, played in March 2012, was ultimately won by Ireland who defeated Afghanistan in the final, with both sides making it through to the ICC World Twenty20 Sri Lanka 2012, a tournament ultimately won by the West Indies.