Cricket has grown a lot since it was first played in the early 18th century. New formats have been added – Twenty Twenty and One Day Internationals. Rules have changed since the time it was first played :the third umpire stepped in and today we have the Decision Review System in place. Along with the rules and formats of the game. there have been new nations who have started playing the game and these are referred to as the Associate nations. In this post I’ll share my views on the Associate nations and how they are having a great impact on the game of Cricket.
There are a total of 37 Associate nations while the Associate Nations with ODI status currently consists of teams from Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Ireland, Netherlands, Oman, Scotland, United Arab Emirates and the Papua New Guinea. With this, these associate members get a chance to play with the full members either a One Day International or a Twenty Twenty match. Emergence of Associate Nations has had a positive impact on the game as more and more nations are playing the sport. With this the game finds some of the best talents.
One of my personal favorite amongst the Associate Nations are Afghanistan. I don’t know but their war-hit country scenario makes their journey to the world stage a fairy tale. These guys have seen everything and coming on the big stage and upsetting the big boys is not an easy task. They are one team that never looks to have taken their associate status as granted and have always fought in every match. Whenever they are not playing against India, I’m in full support to Mohammad Nabi and his men.
Associate Nations add that extra spice whenever they play in any major tournament. Most the players from the full member sides haven’t had a chance to play with these newbies. They sometime tend to take the new players easy only to give away their wicket. The players from the associate nations have the zeal and passion to win a game for their country. They have ‘earned‘ the associate status and this has a huge impact on their game too. These guys are unpredictable and often ready to cause huge upsets in major tournaments. Just like we saw Ireland knocking out England in the 2011 World Cup. So you never know what the associate nations have in the bag.
With the Asia cup and the World T20 around the corner, it’s time for the full members to analyze their situations. With the associate nations looking in great shape, we can expect a few upsets in the tournament. The addition of associate nations has had a great impact on the game with the fact the matches have become a lot more interesting !