The Netherlands’ ICC Men’s T20 World Cup campaign will be best remembered for their upset win over South Africa that shook up Group 2 qualification, but it also showed enough to suggest similar victories could soon be far less shocking.
most races – Max O’Dowd (242)
Most of the land – Bas de Leede (13)
The Netherlands stunned South Africa on the final day of the Super 12 stage and sent their friendly rivals out of the tournament despite having one foot firmly planted in the semi-finals.
While a place in the semi-final was already out of reach for the Netherlands heading into their clash with South Africa, they clearly enjoyed playing in such a high-stakes contest and stepped up to make a significant impact on the tournament.
They also accounted for Zimbabwe handily and pushed Bangladesh close at the Super 12 stage, to go with wins over Namibia and the United Arab Emirates in the First Round.
Bas de Leede proved to be an exciting young talent with 13 wickets in the seven innings he pitched, with only India holding out for the 22-year-old.
The all-rounder has also scored 93 runs at an average of 18.6, but would like to raise his strike rate to 79.48 in this T20 World Cup.
Starter Max O’Dowd got off to a solid start in most of his eight innings and with two half centuries posted the second most runs in the tournament before the Final.
After a barren first round that yielded just 17 runs in three innings, Colin Ackermann raised the standard in Super 12 matches with another 148 runs for the fourth most in that stage.
Paul van Meekeren (11 wickets), Fred Klaassen (eight) and Brandon Glover (seven in three T20Is) each had impact with the ball to build a quartet of menacing pace with de Leede.
While the Netherlands will be proud to have progressed from the First Round and won two Super 12 matches, they will regret losing to Bangladesh in their first match of the last leg.
Bangladesh set a modest total of 144, but the Netherlands were always unlikely to catch up after two golden ducks, a diamond duck and another wicket left them 15/4 after 3.4 overs.
Ackermann shot 62 to give the Netherlands some hope, but slowly ran out of teammates as they fell nine runs short.
The Netherlands lacked a spinner to consistently control the midfield at this T20 World Cup, but with 20-year-old left wing Tim Pringle and 19-year-old leggie Shariz Ahmad gaining valuable experience, better options are already emerging.
The Netherlands have played 15 T20Is since March, as well as ODI series against Pakistan, England, the West Indies and New Zealand, and the growth in experience is shining.
They have a strong core in their 20s and 30s, including skipper Scott Edwards (26), a lot of the middle order and their attacking pace, so they can afford to provide youngsters like de Leede, Pringle, Ahmad and starter Vikramjit Singh. time to develop.
After failing to win a match in last year’s T20 World Cup First Round, they have won four matches this time, for a 50 per cent win-loss record, suggesting they are on course to play more crucial matches. in the future.