The last time Canada celebrated an International Cricket Council (ICC) Intercontinental Cup win was in 2007 at King City, when the national side overwhelmed the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by an innings and 228 runs.
Six years later, Ugandan-born medium pacer, Henry Osinde, remains the only member from that side on the Canadian team seeking its first four-day victory in six years when Canada meets Kenya, starting on March 18. Canada is winless in its last 16 four-day matches.
The national squad, which left here last Friday night, is in Dubai preparing for the four-day match, two Twenty/20 contests and a World Cricket League (WCL) One-Day International.
Canada is in the cellar in both the Intercontinental Cup and WCL competitions. The national side has 10 points from four Intercontinental Cup matches and three from eight WCL games.
Cricket Canada president, Ravin Moorthy, said merely showing up at tournaments without coming out victorious is not enough.
“It’s been quite a while since we have won a match in either format,” said Moorthy. “We have to get going in the right direction and start posting victories. A lot of the guys in the team have played a lot of ODI cricket, including the World Cup.”
Canada spent a week in Trinidad & Tobago last month preparing for the matches against the East Africans.
“Though we did not win a game there, the coach (Gus Logie) had the opportunity to work with players on a number of things to get them ready,” said Moorthy. “The players have done a lot of fitness work and training. From an administration and fan point of view, it’s good to have high expectations for this team.”
The touring squad comprises Rizwan Cheema (capt.), Hiral Patel, Ruvindu Gunasekera, Damodar Daesrath, Junaid Siddiqui, Jimmy Hansra, Manny Aulakh, Henry Osinde, Nitish Kumar, Jeremy Gordon, Raza ur Rehman, Nikhil Dutta, Usman Limbada and Hamza Tariq.
The ODIs will take place on March 11 and 13 and the Twenty/20 games will be held on March 15 and 16 prior to the start of the four-day contest three days later. The games will be played at the ICC Global Cricket Academy Centre in Dubai.
The top two WCL championship teams will automatically join the ICC’s 10 Full Members at the 2015 World Cup while the bottom six teams will join WCL Division Two and Three teams in the ICC World Cup qualifier early next year, where the final two qualifiers will be determined.
Canada will be at home to the UAE in July in a four-day match, two Twenty/20s and an ODI and the Netherlands in August in an Intercontinental Cup clash and two ODIs.
The 2011-13 Intercontinental Cup winner will receive US$100,000 while the runner-up will pick up US$40,000.
Canada was the runner-up to Scotland in the first ICC Associates four-day competition in 2004.
Meanwhile, Jamaican-born all-rounder, Orlando Baker, will lead the United States in the ICC Americas Division One Twenty/20 tournament in Fort Lauderdale March 18-25.
The rest of the squad comprises Daniel Ahmed, Barrington Bartley, Ryan Corns, Akeem Dodson, Karan Ganesh, Elmore Hutchinson, Naseer Jamali, Japen Patel, Abhimanyu Rajp, Saqib Saleem, Nicholas Standford, Timothy Surujbally and Steven Taylor.
The Americans will join the Bahamas, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and Suriname in a double round-robin series. The top two teams will advance to the 16-team World Twenty/20 qualifier in the UAE in October.