Cricket in the Netherlands
Cricket has been played in the Netherlands since at least the 19th century, and in the 1860s was considered a major sport in the country. Other sports (notably football) have long since surpassed cricket in popularity amongst the Dutch but today there are around 6,500 cricketers in the Netherlands and recent developments show that cricket is growing in Netherlands. The first national association, the forerunner of today's Royal Dutch Cricket Association, was formed in 1883 and the Netherlands achieved associate membership of the ICC in 1966.
The Koninklijke Nederlandse Cricket Bond (Royal Dutch Cricket Board) is the governing body of cricket in the Netherlands. It was formed in 1883 and received a Royal charter in 1958. The Netherlands achieved Associate Membership of the ICC in 1966.
Several Dutch cricketers have also played at first-class level elsewhere, the most successful of these probably being Roland Lefebvre who played for Somerset and Glamorgan in English county cricket as well as for Canterbury in New Zealand. The Essex all-rounder Ryan ten Doeschate and Worcestershire batsman Alexei Kervezee are the only current members of the Dutch team to be playing county cricket.
Other Dutch players to have played first class cricket outside of the Intercontinental Cup are:
- Paul-Jan Bakker - who played for Hampshire from 1986 until 1992.
- Bill Glerum - who played one first class game for the Free Foresters in 1957.
- Dirk Nannes - who currently plays for Victoria in Australia, for Delhi Daredevils in India and also for the Australian National Cricket Team.
- Carst Posthuma - who played five first class games for London County Cricket Club in 1903.
- Daan van Bunge - who played for Middlesex in 2004.
- Andre van Troost - who played for Somerset from 1991 to 1998, and for Griqualand West in the 1994/95 season in South Africa.
- Bas Zuiderent - who played for Sussex from 2001 to 2003.
The Netherlands national cricket team qualified for the Cricket World Cup on 4 occasions; 1996, 2003, 2007 and 2011, Also qualified for 2009 ICC World Twenty20. The country has been considered one of the stronger "minnow" nations for some time. Netherlands beat England in the 2009 ICC World Twenty20 which is one of the biggest wins in Dutch cricket history. One year later they recorded their first ODI win against a full ICC member when they beat Bangladesh. Although the sport is sustained by a small player base, some have won professional contracts in England. Netherlands is ranked within the top 15 teams in the world and has co-hosted the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1999.
National women's team
The Dutch women's cricket team represents the Netherlands in international women's cricket matches. Unlike their male counterparts, they currently have both Test and ODI status.