Dutch should focus on improving in T20: Doeschate

Friday, February 25, 2011

NEW DELHI - Talented Ryan ten Doeschate grabbed the first opportunity on the big stage by stroking a dazzling century against England in the World Cup. He, however, rues not getting to play quality opposition often and suggests the Dutch to focus on Twenty20 cricket to develop their game.

Only four of 28 ODIs the South African born cricketer has played so far have been against against Test-playing nations and he finds it “frustrating” not been able to play the big teams. Interestingly, Doeschate has a staggering batting average of 71.21 from 28 matches.

“It is a major frustration for me. If I had done better when I was younger, I would have had the opportunity to play for South Africa. Not a fault but you know it was not in my hands. I developed better pretty late and the opportunity is obviously now lot less. Playing for Holland is an opportunity nonetheless and it’s a great privilege to play in tournament like this,” Doeschate told reporters here Friday after the Dutch team’s practise session.

Doeschate’s 119 against England Wednesday was the second-highest individual score by an Associate player.

The 30-year-old, whose Dutch lineage qualified him to play for the Netherlands, unlike many feels his team should first focus on mastering their Twenty20 skills rather than the Test cricket.

“I think Twenty20 gives small countries the best chance. If you see Rugby 7, it is a big international tournament and teams like Fiji, Samoa and Scotland do really well. I feel Holland should focus on Twenty20 cricket and then on 50-overs cricket. I am not even talking about four-day or five-day cricket. I think Twenty20 cricket is easiest skill to master and the most exciting thing for spectators,” said Doeschate, who was ICC’s Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year in 2007 and 2010.

Ask if he feels shifting to the Netherlands was the right move, he said: “Well, at that time, it was the only option available. Its a bit of a cause and effect situation I suppose looking back.”

Few know that Doeschate was a bowling-all rounder, a medium pacer before former England Graham Gooch spotted him for Essex and shaped his batting.

“I joined Essex in 2003 and batted down the order in one-day cricket and got a few knocks about. I worked really hard on my batting,” he said.

“Graham had a massive effect, his tactical knowledge about cricket is more than many. Of course, there was Essex coaches and staff also who helped me. But he (Gooch) has done a lot.

Doeschate who has been picked by Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) for the Indian Premier League fourth edition says the World Cup provides him a good opportunity to adjust to the Indian conditions.

“This is a good opportunity (to prepare for IPL) to play in these conditions. I dont know how much I’ll play in IPL because they (KKR) have about six overseas players. I will get some good experience of the conditions,” he said.

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