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Tough debut for PNG away against Netherlands

We have brought a really strong and eager team for this match, says Jack Vare-Kevere, captain of the visiting side

Tough debut for PNG away against Netherlands - Cricket News
Netherlands team celebrates after their victory against England.
In the fourth match of the ICC Intercontinental Cup 2015-17, Netherlands will bank on home advantage when it takes on Papua New Guinea (PNG) in Amsterdam on Tuesday (June 16). 
 
While Netherlands, making its seventh appearance in the Intercontinental Cup, has won four matches in the competition over the years, it’s the first appearance for PNG, which marked its One-Day International debut with a series win over Hong Kong in November last year. 
 
What makes this Intercontinental Cup different from the previous editions is that the winner of the eight-team round-robin competition will play the No. 10 side on the ICC Test Team Rankings (as on December 31, 2017) in the four-match ICC Test Challenge in 2018. If the Associate Member wins the series, to be played on a home-and-away basis, then it will become the 11th Test nation. 
 
Netherlands faces off PNG in the final match of the first round, which earlier had Namibia beating Hong Kong and Ireland earning 20 points against the United Arab Emirates. The match between former champions Scotland and Afghanistan was marred by rain, but Scotland still managed to earn 13 points against Afghanistan’s 7 after only one innings was completed. 
 
For PNG, which became an Associate Member of the ICC in 1973, Tuesday marks a new chapter in its cricket history as it plays its inaugural Intercontinental Cup match. “Every cricketing country would one day like to play Test cricket and the ICC Intercontinental Cup offers a great pathway for countries like PNG into Test cricket,” said Jack Vare-Kevere, the PNG captain.
 
“It is a great feeling for the players to be representing Papua New Guinea in our first-ever Intercontinental Cup match and we are all looking forward to the experience.”
 
When the two sides met in the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier in January last year, Netherlands secured an emphatic 150-run win on the back of Eric Szwarczynski’s unbeaten century.
 
But Vare-Kevere suggested that his team just needs to stick to the basics to beat Netherlands. “We have a couple of returning faces in the squad with Sese Bau and Loa Nou coming back in after a couple of years. They’ve come back hungrier and stronger than ever and combined with the rest of the squad I am confident that we have brought a really strong and eager team for this match,” he said.
 
Squads 
 
Netherlands: Peter Borren (captain), Wesley Barresi, Mudassar Bukhari, Ben Cooper, Dariel Doram, Max O’Dowd, Timm van der Gugten, Quirijn Gunning, Ahsan Malik, Paul van Meekeren, Stephan Myburgh, Michael Rippon, Pieter Seelaar, Michael Swart.
 
Papua New Guinea: Jack Vare-Kevere (captain), Charles Amini, Sese Bau, Mahuru Dai, Willie Gavera, Loa Nou, Kila Pala, Pipi Raho, John Boge Reva, Lega Siaka, Chad Soper, Tony Ura, Vani Vagi Morea, Assadollah Vala, Norman Vanua.

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