On the 17th-20th August the Swedish Cricket Federation and the City of Stockholm are hosting the 2016 World Cricket League Division II Europe, which means the European Cricket Championships in Sweden’s division. This is the first time an official outdoor cricket championship will be played in Sweden.
“It is fantastic that the International Cricket Council has chosen Sweden for the first time ever to host the biggest championship that Sweden can be assigned. Cricket is growing explosively in Sweden. Getting to host this tournament is a clear indication that we’re working in the right direction and that internationally, Sweden is seriously beginning to be seen as a cricket country. The opportunity to offer a Swedish audience world-class cricket is going to be really fun,” says Shahzeb Choudhry, chairman of the Swedish Cricket Federation.
The championship is played on two cricket grounds in Stockholm, one at Gärdet and one in Skarpnäck. The participating countries beside Sweden include Germany, Spain, Isle of Man, Israel and Gibraltar. The tournament is played as Twenty20 matches, which are restricted to a maximum of 20 overs, so the matches last just 2,5 to 3 hours.
Cricket is one of the fastest growing sports in Sweden and has increased in five years from 13 to 49 teams, with over 3,000 registered players. In 2015, cricket was accepted into the Swedish Sports Confederation and played in four different divisions and youth tournaments.
“The Swedish Cricket Federation is a modern, innovative association and a model in many ways. Cricket clubs have become meeting places for recent immigrants and residents, and it is not uncommon for some ten different nationalities to be on a single team. The European Championship in Sweden is a great opportunity to show off cricket’s international and Swedish profiles to a new audience,” says Tomas Eriksson, member of the Swedish Sports Confederation.
The entrance is free to the matches, so make sure to catch some cricket at Gärdet or in Skarpnäck during the Championship dates. There are also different activities on offer, also for children. You can for example try your hand at cricket yourself. The schedule for the matches is as follows:
Wednesday, 17 Aug 2016
10.00 – Sweden vs Spain – Gärdet Cricket Ground
10.00 – Israel vs Gibraltar – Skarpnäck Cricketplan
10.00 – Isle of Man vs Germany – Skarpnäck Cricketplan
15.00 – Sweden vs Germany – Gärdet Cricket Ground
15.00 – Isle of Man vs Gibraltar – Skarpnäck Cricketplan
15.00 – Israel vs Spain – Skarpnäck Cricketplan