Issue #18 JCA to accept foreigners in the National team


March 30, 2002                                                                                              Issue #18

Hello and welcome to this edition of the I.E.C.C. Newsletter.

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JCA to accept foreigners in the National team
….and Kanto Cricket League set to begin under JCA

In a major policy decision, the Japan Cricket Association has decided to accept expatriate cricketers in its national team thus avoiding a stand-off with Kanto Cricket League and a possible boycott of JCA by the KCL. Thus, KCL, Japan’s leading cricket tournament, is all set to take off in April with its first match being scheduled on April 14.

What had started as a run of the mill tournament for the expatriate clubs a few years ago has become a prestigious and premier competition in the country, with Japan Cricket Association stepping in last year to take a lead role in organising it, thus making it the first step in a larger initiative to integrate tournaments held independently at various regions of the country.

The stand-off would have dealt a body blow to JCA’s efforts to streamline cricket in Japan, efforts for which was started last year by both JCA and KCL. In an agreement reached between the two sides last year, KCL was to have a two division league structure and a certain clause about players residential status to be eligible for KCL was to be incorporated beginning 2002. However, the radical changes proposed by JCA and accepted by the KCL Committee in its AGM in 2001 did not find favour with all clubs and some of them boycotted the tournament last year. This year, some more teams rescinded the agreement and asked for two more years to get their players’ residential papers in order which JCA flatly refused but accepted KCL’s other demand of inducting foreign players into the national team. A second sitting of the KCL AGM was called in February this year to discuss the decisions of JCA and was accepted by KCL by a vote of 11-3. With this decision, JCA has killed two birds with one stone. It has made the first step in giving the tournament a presentable face for potential sponsors while avoiding a stand-off with KCL. All but one of the teams that had boycotted KCL last year have come back since.

The two division structure of KCL was formed on the basis of the results of the tournament last year, with the top 6 qualifying for Division I and the rest for Division II. KCL thus has 6 teams in D-I and 10 teams in two groups in D-II in 2002, with the top two teams of D-II and bottom two of D-I swapping their places in the subsequent years.

The agreement between JCA and KCL was a sort of give and take for both. While KCL agreed to go under JCA and get rid of the players whose residential papers are not in order, JCA on its part, has promised to bring in more fund for KCL, agreed to actively look for sponsors and more significantly, agreed to accept a certain number of foreigners in the national team subject to their qualification under ICC stipulations on that subject. JCA’s acceptance of the demand by KCL of including expatriate players in the national team is considered to be a major victory for KCL, who has been campaigning for it for years. JCA has consistently been turning down the demand every time it was made on the grounds that the culture in Japan is different and the expatriates are not really up to it! However, some plain speaking by some members during the KCL AGM, the realisation that other sports in the country such as the traditional Sumo wrestling, Rugby and Football accept foreigners in the national team, the thrashing it had been receiving in the international tournaments – except the recently concluded EAP Eights tournament where it finished second, prompted JCA to accept the KCL’s long standing demand.

One of the long term goals of JCA, as laid out in the second sitting of the KCL AGM early this year, is to become an Associate member of ICC and it is believed that the decision to accept expatriate cricketers in the national teams has got a lot to do with this goal, apart from bringing the KCL under its fold. Knowledgeable sources feel that without the help of foreigners it is difficult for Japan, where Cricket is still at its infancy and anything un-American is difficult to sink-in, to attain the Associate membership any time soon. They also have to change their image as the whipping boys at the international(non-Test) level. Induction of a few players from countries where cricket is a main stream sport is expected to help Japan gain a few wins to boost their chances of Associate membership.

Apart from acting as the umbrella body of various tournaments in Japan, JCA also has plans to organise two and three day tournaments and an All Japan Championship in which the winners of the regional tournaments will participate. JCA has also plans to increase the native player pool, the number of grounds available for cricket, various fund raising ceremonies. Dean Jones, former Australian cricketer is expected to arrive in May for a fund raising dinner during the Golden Week holidays in Japan.

The schedule of the KCL is available here.

Japan lose to ACB/Australian Indigenous in ICC East Asia 8’s Cricket Tournament

Reported by : David Clear 

With two wickets down and two overs to spare, the ACB/Australia Indigenous development team successfully chased Japan’s total of 3/143 in the final of the inaugural ICC East Asia Cricket 8’s Festival at Lilac Hill Park. ACB/Australian Indigenous went through the tournament undefeated. In finishing second, Japan are officially the ICC East Asia Affiliate member champions. The tournament, hosted by the WACA, is part of the ICC Development Program to globalise the sport of cricket and has seen South Korea and Indonesia competing in international competition for the first-ever time.

In the consolation final for 3rd and 4th, Indonesia set South Korea a big total of 5/168. The Koreans responded by posting their highest score of the event of 98.

Player of the day award was presented to Jung Suk Lee of South Korea, making 37no and taking 1/10.

Final, Japan 3/143 (Hirokazu Takahashi 60, Shuichiro Nakamura 48no) lost to ACB/Indigenous 2/144 (Noel Bennell 56no, Clint Yates 37, Dallas Coyne 36)

Consolation Final, Indonesia 5/168 (Soni Hawoe 47, Agus Anon Abadi 38, Wayan Suandi 37no, Sang Hyeun Kyung 2/35, Jung Suk Lee 1/10) defeated South Korea 98 (Jung Suk Lee 37no, Tae Jin Kim 26no, Zacharia Awang 4/10)

1. ACB/Australian Indigenous development team
2. Japan
3. Indonesia
4. South Korea

3 Japanese players in the East Asia Pacific team


As part of the ICC Development Program to grow cricket in non-Test nations, following the successful completion of the inaugural ICC East Asia Cricket 8’s Festival from 25 February 1 March, the following 2002 ICC East Asia XI team was announced:

Kasuhisa Orita JAPAN
Naoki Miyaji JAPAN
Dave Herbert INDONESIA
Hirokazu Takahashi JAPAN
Zachariah Awang INDONESIA

The Player of the Championships was presented to 16 year old CLINT YATES of the ACB/Australian Indigenous development team. Clint was Captain of the undefeated victorious side, made 201 runs @ 12.5, took 8 wickets @ 12.5, and held 5 catches.

The Festival Award, for the most influential player of the event, a signed print donated by Dennis Lillee, was awarded to Japan’s Vice-Captain and opening batsmen HIROKAZU TAKAHASHI who scored 230 runs @ 57.5. He also took 5 wickets @ 15.8.

Takahashi is currently on a cricket development training placement, along with two other Japanese development officers, in Melbourne with the Victorian Cricket Association as part of their ICC established partnerships with the Japan Cricket Association and the Republic of Korea Cricket Association. All three are sure to return home with keen enthusiasm and renewed ideas and practices for how to best progress the sport in their country.


The first ever South African team that visited India after lifting the apartheied ban on them had everything to make a good curry rice. The members of the touring party inclued (Clive) Rice, (Jimmy) Cook and (Kepler) Wessels!

Readers’ Forum

Firstly, I’d like to congratulate all who were awarded for their great performances during the cricket season. A job well done!

I was interested to see that the best batsman was awarded for his excellent average of 84.5(Ferris, not bad for an old guy 🙂 ), but I was a little disappointed to see that the bowlers weren’t also judged on their averages. Not to take anything away from Naeem for his wicket taking ability, but the best bowler should be judged on averages not just wickets taken. I would be curious to find out why this was the case! I’m sure we are all familiar with the saying “Shit gets wickets”! Just awarding a bowler for wickets taken isn’t always a true reflection on how well a bowler has bowled.

If I’ve angered anyone because of my personal views, I’m sorry. Feel free to send me your opinions on this as I’d be curious to see if anyone else feels the same way.

Matt Sharpe ( Shizuoka Kytes)

Improve your batting skills during the winter break

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But how do I access one…? Do we have one in Japan…??

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So improve your cricket during this winter break and be ready for the KCL 2002 and get that elusive Best Batsman/MoM/MVP of the league trophy.

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That’s all in this edition!