'Minnow' is a term used to refer to small fish
. In sport, it also refers to small/underdog teams who're competing with established giants.
At this World Cup, although Geoff had England in his list of ODI 'minnows'
, the minnow teams are (in alphabetical order): Bangladesh (despite wins against Sri Lanka
in the last 2.5 years), Bermuda, Canada, Ireland, Kenya, Netherlands, Scotland and Zimbabwe.
Ergo, half of the teams in this World Cup count as minnows. Australia's thrashing
and Sri Lanka doing the same to Bermuda
will undoubtedly get people asking the ICC more questions about why these countries are playing at the World Cup. Like Stuart pointed out, a close game between the minnow was realistically the only way there could be some interest in a game, say between Ireland and Zimbabwe
This discussion on minnow teams is interesting and it comes at a time when Tasmania, who topped the points table
in this season's Pura Cup, find themselves in the Pura Cup final
, against New South Wales, starting next week.
If Australia's cricket administrators had stuck to their stand
and not included Tasmania in the domestic competition at all, or had included it say in the 1990s rather than in 1977/78
, we may not have seen the emergence of the likes of David Boon
boring run-machine Ricky Ponting
Ponting ought to realize that Tasmania was a minnow too. He spoke out against minnow teams for this World Cup
and also during the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy
. To be fair to him, he does have a point. The ICC gives these teams a series of big games once in a couple of years (at the ICC Champions Trophy and at the World Cup). There's no doubt that these minnow teams feel hopelessly out of depth in such events. The better way to get these teams to improve their standards are to first make them play more games with each other (which the ICC is doing) and to have them play against at least one major team on an annual basis, so that by the time they get to a major ICC tournament, they've played against at least some of the major teams at least once.
In other minnow news, there seems to be dissent in the English ranks. When England were 4-0 down against India last year, Hoggard commented that he'd rather take a 5-fer in an Ashes win than a 5-fer in a World Cup win
. Of course, they were his views. Michael Vaughan though seemed to offer a different take now that the Ashes were lost 5-0
. He said
I guess winning the tournament, with the relative inexperience of our bowling attack and where we've been in one-day cricket recently, would be a bigger achievement than winning the Ashes.
The general rule of thumb, by the way, is that England always
have an inexperienced bowling attack. Find me one series in the last couple of years where England's captain/coach haven't been quoted as saying their bowling was inexperienced. I'm fairly sure they said it before the 2005 Ashes too
Back to what Vaughan said though. He's obviously saying that he'd be happier with winning a World Cup (with this team) than the Ashes.
Labels: 2007 world cup, australia, bangladesh, bermuda, canada, england, holland, kenya, minnows, netherlands, ponting, scotland, tasmania, vaughan, world cup, zimbabwe