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Sri Lanka triumph at the 5th "Viennese World Cup"

Wed, Jul 11, 2007 3:38 PM


Once again it was that time of year for one of the highlights of the Austrian cricket calendar -the 5th Viennese World Cup was held on the first week of July as usual.

There were more than 15 teams who wanted to register for the tournament. There were two newcomers this year, Germany and Hungary. It was once again a perfect weekend for a perfect tournament.

Austria Cricket Club Wien was once again the organiser of the tournament and did a great job in demonstrating the spirit of cricket off the field as well as on the field, which is a very important aspect to develop cricket in this region.

This was the 5th continuous Tournament and it aims to get cricketers from Holland, Germany to Hungary to have a chance to meet each other, develop a relationship and exchange ideas, as well as learn different cultures, both on and off the field. There is a famous saying in Vienna which was also the motto of the Tournament: "Wien ist anders", which means Vienna is different.

The first day of competition started off in great weather conditions, a typical summer's day. Most of the first round matches were played on Saturday. The strong Germany side which beat Austria/England with a superb batting performance lost their match against a cool EU SL Holland side. As newcomers to the tournament, Hungary would have gained experience to come back next year to perform well as they are in possession of a good bowling attack.

Pakistan and Sri Lanka eased their way into the semi-finals without being really contested. India and EU SL Holland performed well to take the remaining two semi-final slots. Although the Austria/England team comprising mostly of under 15 boys from the ACC Wien with the support from some senior players didn't manage to win a game, the potential was quite clear to be seen. Some of the Austria/England youngsters showed classy cricket at times.

As the tournament entered Sunday, it was time for the semi-finals. By this time, quite a large number of spectators had gathered and they were treated to some marvellous cricket and of course the great weather which prevailed. The first semi-final was between Sri Lanka and India and Sri Lanka chased a modest score of 53 made by India and they did it with the greatest of ease to reach the final for the second time in four years.

The second semi-final between EU SL Holland and Pakistan turned out to be a thriller. Pakistan raised away as they batted first, however the EU SL Holland bowlers came back well to restrict Pakistan who fell short of hundred runs. In reply, EU Sl Holland got off to a fierce start as the openers put on 70 runs and got them very close to the target. However the latter failed to deliver and eventually lost it with the last ball.

Free food and refreshments was provided by Austria CC during both days of the tournament as well as during the break before the finals for everyone in the ground. Many spectators turned up to witness the final which promised to be an exciting one with the best two teams (Sri Lanka & Pakistan) locking horns to battle out for the coveted Viennese World Cup 2007.

Great cricket was played by both teams, however Sri Lanka turned out to be a touch too strong and there was no last ball thriller this time like when Sri Lanka lost to the same opponents four years ago. Pakistan was restricted to 88 runs and Sri Lanka reached the target with one over to spare without losing a wicket. "Maybe the best place for the Sri Lankans to win a World Cup would be Vienna rather than the West Indies".

Due to the increasing popularity of the tournament and the increasing number of interested teams, the organisers are thinking of extending the tournament to either 3 or 4 days in future. It must also be said that the number of spectators are also increasing which is a promising sign.

Many thanks goes out to the sponsors & officials:

1. Ströck Brot
2. Sport Welt Donaustadt
3. Kelly
4. The umpires and Tournament referee
5. The organiser Siva Nadarajah and members of the club ACC Wien.

Applications for the Viennese World Cup 2008 have already started arriving and the closing date will be 30th December 2007. Therefore kindly submit your registration as soon as possible to secure your team's participation for the next tournament in 2008.



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