Ghana national cricket team
(2015 Africa Twenty20)
|Coach:|| R. P. Sharma
(2015 Africa Twenty20)
|Founded:||1904 (as Gold Coast)|
The Ghana national cricket team represents the Republic of Ghana in international cricket. Most of the team's matches are played in ICC Africa regional tournaments, although Ghana has featured irregularly in the lower divisions of the World Cricket League (WCL).
A team representing the British Gold Coast played its first recorded match in 1904, and international matches from 1907. Known as Ghana after independence in 1957, until recent times the majority of the team's matches came against other West African teams, and occasionally against touring English teams. In 1976, Ghana joined the West Africa Cricket Council, with Ghanaian players representing the West African cricket team in international tournaments. Following the breakup of the council, the Ghana Cricket Association gained affiliate membership of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 2002, with the national side making its debut at an ICC tournament in 2004.
CricketArchive records a team representing the Gold Coast, a British colony, as having played its first match in May 1904, against a team from Lagos, Nigeria. Similar fixtures were played in the following two seasons, with the venue alternating between Lagos and Accra. A team representing the Southern Nigeria Protectorate toured in April 1907, representing the first international fixture played by a Gold Coast representative team. Similar matches were played again in 1911, 1912, and 1913, with the host alternating each year. Although the sport had been introduced by British settlers, representative teams were multiracial from an early stage – the 1912 Gold Coast–Southern Nigeria fixture, the only pre-war match for which a scorecard is available, featured names like Otoo, Sagoe, Agbokpo, and Akufo (for Gold Coast), and Layode and Oseni (for Southern Nigeria). Gold Coast's Otoo took six wickets in Southern Nigeria's second innings, helping Gold Coast to an innings victory. However, European-only matches were introduced around the same time, beginning in 1906 and ending only in 1956, the year before Ghanaian independence. The Gold Coast's leading runscorer in the inaugural European-only fixture was Gordon Guggisberg, who had earlier played a single first-class match (and was later Governor of the Gold Coast, from 1919 to 1927).
After a long gap, international matches resumed in April 1926, when the Gold Coast played the Nigerian national team in Lagos. Gold Coast–Nigeria fixtures, both multiracial and European-only, were played almost annually from 1926 to 1939, and resumed again after World War II. In several years the European-only fixtures were played in provincial cities like Kumasi and Ibadan, although multiracial games were played only in the capitals. Gold Coast sides were occasionally bolstered by players of first-class standard – for instance, Cecil Pullan (Oxford University and Worcestershire) and Michael Green (Gloucestershire and Essex) appeared together in a 1937 match, with Pullan appearing again after the war. The national side played its first match as "Ghana" less than a month after Kwame Nkrumah's independence declaration in March 1957, with annual Ghana–Nigeria matches occurring until 1964.
West African era
A Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) side toured West Africa during the 1975–76 season, and played two matches at Accra's Achimota School in January 1976 – one against an Accra side and one against the Ghanaian national side. The West Africa Cricket Council was formed later in 1976, with The Gambia and Sierra Leone joining Ghana and Nigeria as members. Consequently, with the exception of the quadrangular West African Championships, first held in 1976, Ghanaian cricketers played international matches only for the combined West African team, which made its international debut at the 1982 ICC Trophy. The West African side at the 1997 ICC Trophy was captained by Edinam Nutsugah, a Ghanaian. At that tournament, another Ghanaian, Daniel Vanderpuje-Orgle, took 5/31 against Israel, one of only four five-wicket hauls at the tournament. However, the West Africa Cricket Council lost significance in 2000, when Nigeria applied for separate membership of the ICC. The council was disbanded in 2003, with its members having become ICC members the previous year – Gambia, Ghana, and Sierra Leone were made affiliate members, and Nigeria an associate member.
A 2000 CricInfo article noted that cricket in Ghana was then confined to the south of the country, played only in the capital and the cities of Kumasi and Obuasi. It was also said to be particularly popular amongst the expatriate British and Indian populations, with the main club league featuring two Indian teams out of four total. Ghana played its first ICC tournament in March 2004, defeating Malawi in a play-off to finish third (of eight teams) in the Africa Affiliates Tournament. That tournmanet was part of the qualification process for the 2007 World Cup. The inaugural edition of the World Cricket League commenced in 2007, preceded by various regional qualifying tournaments. At the 2006 Africa Division Three qualifier, Ghana placed third behind Mozambique and Sierra Leone, again defeating Malawi in a third-place playoff. The playoff was noted for the performance of Ghanaian player Peter Ananya (a future national captain), who took 7/25 to bowl Malawi out for 41.
Ghana won the 2008 Africa Division Three tournament by defeating Swaziland in the final, having earlier bowled Rwanda out for 23 in their semi-final. They were subsequently promoted to the 2008 Africa Division Two tournament, but could only place fifth from six teams. This was enough, however, for Ghana to maintain its place for the 2010 Division Two event. At that tournament, they placed second to Zambia, securing entry to the 2012 Global Division Eight tournament. The only African side at the eight-team tournament, played in Samoa, Ghana lost only two matches, both to Vanuatu, placing runner-up and qualifying for the 2013 Global Division Seven event. Three of the six sides there were African, the others being Nigeria and Botswana, the hosts. Ghana won only two matches, both against Germany, and were relegated back to the regional tournaments system.
In international Twenty20 cricket, Ghana played its first tournaments in 2011, finishing runner-up to Nigeria in the 2011 Africa Division Two Twenty20 tournament and then fifth in 2011 Division One, both part of qualification for the 2012 World Twenty20. Earlier in the year, Ghana had hosted the Africa Division Three Twenty20, its first time hosting a senior ICC tournament. Ghana placed fourth at the 2012 Africa Division Two Twenty20, failing to qualify for the following year's Division One event. However, they went on to win the 2014 Division Two Twenty20, defeating Zambia on net run rate, and consequently progressing to the 2015 Africa Twenty20 Championship. There, Ghana defeated Tanzania, Botswana, and Uganda (for the first time), finishing fourth behind Uganda on net run rate. Against Uganda, Ghana had made only 74/9 from its 20 overs, but managed to bowl Uganda (a previous winner of the tournament) out for 69.
World Cricket League
- 2006 Africa Division Three: 3rd (8 teams)
- 2008 Africa Division Three: 1st (8 teams) – promoted
- 2008 Africa Division Two: 5th (6 teams)
- 2010 Africa Division Two: 2nd (6 teams)
- 2012 Global Division Eight: 2nd (8 teams) – promoted
- 2013 Global Division Seven: 5th (6 teams) – relegated
ICC Africa Twenty20 Championship
- 2011 Division Two: 2nd (9 teams) – promoted
- 2011 Division One: 5th (5 teams) – relegated
- 2012 Division Two: 4th (8 teams)
- 2013 Division One: did not qualify
- 2014 Division Two: 1st (6 teams) – promoted
- 2015 Division One: 4th (6 teams)
- "Ghana's national team hopes to gain recognition at cricket tournament" [transcript] – China Central Television. Broadcast 30 March 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Other matches played by Gold Coast – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Gold Coast v Southern Nigeria, Southern Nigeria in Gold Coast 1911/12 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Other matches played by Gold Coast Europeans – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Gold Coast Europeans v Southern Nigeria Europeans, Southern Nigeria Europeans in Gold Coast 1906/07 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Gordon Guggisberg – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Gold Coast Europeans v Nigeria Europeans, Nigeria Europeans in Gold Coast 1936/37 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Cecil Pullan – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Michael Green – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015
- Other matches played by Ghana – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Marylebone Cricket Club in West Africa 1975/76 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Tony Munro (20 March 1999). "Sierra Leone war puts in doubt WACCQ participation" – ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC Trophy matches played by West Africa – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Edinam Nutsugah – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Israel v West Africa, Carlsberg ICC Trophy 1996/97 (Plate) – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Daniel Vanderpuje-Orgle – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- (21 September 2000). "Africa Cricket Association meeting: Nigeria and Tanzania to seek ICC Associate membership." – ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Cricket – National Sports Authority of Ghana. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Tony Munro (10 January 2000). "Cricket hangs on in Ghana" – ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Ghana v Malawi, ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifying Affiliate Tournament 2003/04 (3rd Place Play-off) – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Three 2006 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Ghana v Malawi, ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Three 2006 (3rd Place Play-off) – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Ghana v Rwanda, ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Three 2008 (Semi-Final) – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Ghana v Swaziland, ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Three 2008 (Final) – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League African Region Division Two 2008/09 Table – CricketArchive .Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Two 2010 Table – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League Division Seven – ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Two Twenty20 2011 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division One Twenty20 2011 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- ICC World Cricket League Africa Region Division Two Twenty20 2014/15 – CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
- Franklin Kaweru (31 March 2015). "End of the road for Cricket Cranes" – Kawowo Sports. Retrieved 1 April 2015.