Dutch national women’s coach Shane Deitz has announced a squad of fifteen to take part in next month’s Women’s World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe.
The group includes ten players who took part in the T20 Qualifier in Scotland in 2019, when they finished third in their group and sixth overall; this 50-over competition, however, looks much tougher, with group matches against Ireland (21 November), Sri Lanka (23 November), Papua New Guinea (25 November) and the West Indies (29 November).
The top three sides from the ten-team tournament will qualify for the Women’s World Cup in New Zealand next year, while the next two will join them in the next iteration of the Women’s World Championship.
Coach Deitz is setting his expectations at a modest level: ‘We have absolutely nothing to lose and a great deal to gain,’ he said this week.
‘We will undoubtedly be outsiders, but that’s a great place to be because we can play with freedom and really enjoy the tournament. That is the focus: to learn and to enjoy the experience. You never know, perhaps we will surprise a couple of teams.’
As a side, the Dutch are short of recent 50-over experience: they last played in the ECB’s one-day competition in 2019, when they finished second in Division 3B, and this year’s European qualifier from which they reached this global event was played in a T20 format.
Nevertheless, even with the loss of Miranda Veringmeier and Denise van Deventer, who have retired from international cricket, the squad comprises a promising mix of youth and experience (sometimes in the one player), and it has a potential match-winner in Sterre Kalis, who this week signed a full-time contract for next season with the Northern Diamonds.
She will be at the heart of a batting line-up which also includes captain Heather Siegers, now 25, who made her debut for the national side at the age of fifteen and who has played 87 matches across the two formats, and wicketkeeper Babette de Leede (22), who began at the same age and has already appeared for her country 66 times.
Others who will feature in the top and middle order include Robine Rijke and Juliët Post, both regular members of the side for several seasons, and Jolien van Vliet, who was just staking her claim for a place in the longer format when the pandemic disrupted the side’s programme.
There will be interest in the bowling in the impact of Gwen Bloemen, who had a successful domestic season opening the bowling for VRA, and who joins an attack which also includes Frédérique Overdijk, who caused a sensation during the European qualifier when she set a world record in T20 Internationals by taking seven wickets for 3 runs in four overs against France.
The seam unit also features Marloes Braat, who returned to the side for that qualifier after a five-year absence and who first played for the Netherlands as a sixteen-year-old in 2006, Hannah Landheer, Isabel van der Woning, and Iris Zwilling, while spin will be provided by the off-breaks of Eva Lynch and the leg-spin of Caroline de Lange and Silver Siegers.
The full squad is:
Heather Siegers (Rood en Wit, captain), Gwen Bloemen (VRA), Marloes Braat (Voorburg), Sterre Kalis (Northern Diamonds), Hannah Landheer, Caroline de Lange (both Quick Haag), Babette de Leede, Eva Lynch (both Voorburg), Frédérique Overdijk (Quick Haag), Juliët Post (Ajax Leiden), Robine Rijke (Quick Haag), Silver Siegers (Rood en Wit), Jolien van Vliet (Ajax Leiden), Isabel van der Woning (Quick Haag), and Iris Zwilling (Rood en Wit).
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