Fiji national cricket team

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Fiji
Cricket Fiji logo.png
Association Cricket Fiji
Personnel
Captain Josefa Rika
Coach Shane Jurgensen
History
First-class debut United Kingdom Fiji v. Auckland New Zealand
(Auckland, New Zealand; 25 January 1895)
International Cricket Council
ICC status Associate member (1965)
ICC region East Asia-Pacific
WCL n/a (regional tournaments)
International cricket
First international United Kingdom Fiji v. Australia 
(Suva, Fiji; 27 March 1905)
One Day Internationals
World Cup Qualifier Appearances 7 (first in 1979)
Best result 11th place (1997)
As of 4 September 2015

The Fiji national cricket team is the team that represents the Republic of Fiji in international cricket. They have been an associate member of the International Cricket Council (ICC) since 1965,[1] although the team's history goes back to the late 19th century.[2]

In April 2018, the ICC decided to grant full Twenty20 International (T20I) status to all its members. Therefore, all Twenty20 matches played between Fiji and other ICC members after 1 January 2019 will be a full T20I.[3]

History

Early days

Cricket was introduced to Fiji by European settlers in 1874, and the native population began taking up the game in 1878. The governor of Fiji at the time listed introducing cricket to the native Fijians as one of the achievements of his tenure in his memoirs.[2]

Early tours

Fiji was playing first-class cricket just 21 years after cricket was introduced to the country, when they toured New Zealand in early 1895.[4]

1895 tour of New Zealand

Fiji's team on the tour in 1895 was captained by John Udal, whose great-grandson Shaun would eventually play Test cricket for England.[5] The first match of the tour was a two-day match against Auckland, which Fiji lost by an innings.[6]

A low scoring second match against Otago was drawn after rain washed out the first of the two days.[7] The third match against Canterbury was also lost by an innings,[8] before a draw against Wellington.[9]

The final two matches of the tour went much better for the Fijians, winning against Hawke's Bay by an innings after a century from John Collins,[10] and beating Taranaki by two wickets.[11]

1907–08 tour of Australia

In 1907–08, Fiji toured Australia, playing 26 matches against state, university and district sides between 11 December 1907 and 30 March 1908.[12] In the drawn two-day match against Queensland, Pope Cakobau took 7 for 105 and 3 for 56.[13] The Fijian team also played a two-day match against New South Wales and two against Victoria. All four of these matches were drawn.

1923–24 New Zealand tour of Fiji

A New Zealand team captained by Walter Harvie, and consisting mostly of players from Auckland, toured Fiji in March and April 1924, playing five matches, including two three-day matches against Fiji. None of the matches were first-class.[14][15]

1935–36 New Zealand tour of Fiji

A young New Zealand team captained by Bruce Massey, known as the Maorilanders, toured Fiji in December 1935 and January 1936, playing nine matches, including two three-day matches against Fiji. None of the matches were first-class.[16][17][18]

Post War period

Fiji toured New Zealand twice more, in 1948[19] and 1954.[20] Fiji's first match against a Test-playing nation came in 1956, when the West Indies visited. Fiji won the match against a team featuring the likes of Garfield Sobers by 28 runs despite being bowled out for 91, largely thanks to a six wicket haul from John Gosling.[21]

1948 tour of New Zealand

Like the tour in 1895, the 1948 tour started with a defeat to Auckland, by 168 runs.[22] Fiji won their next match against Wellington by one wicket,[23] before losing to Canterbury by 36 runs.[24]

The tour continued with a 46 run defeat by Otago[25] and concluded with a 115 run win against Auckland.[26] One notable player for Fiji on this tour was IL Bula, who scored the most runs and the only century on the tour.[27] Bula's full name is Ilikena Lasarusa Talebulamainavaleniveivakabulaimainakulalakebalau, and his name is thought to be the longest of any first class cricketer.[28]

1954 tour of New Zealand

Just four matches were played on the 1954 tour,[20] which started with a two wicket defeat to Otago.[29] The tour continued with another two wicket defeat, this time to Canterbury,[30] before a 117 run defeat to Wellington.[31] The tour ended with a seven wicket win against Auckland.[32] The team included Ratu Kamisese Mara who would go on to become the Prime Minister and President of Fiji.

ICC membership

Fiji gained associate membership of the ICC in 1965.[1] They played in the first ICC Trophy tournament in 1979, and played in every one until 2001.[33] They also played in the first ACC Trophy in 1996, losing in the semi-final to the UAE.[34]

In 2001, Fiji played in the first Pacifica Cup in Auckland, reaching the final where they lost to the New Zealand Māori by three wickets.[35] They played in the 2002 tournament in Samoa, finishing third after beating the Cook Islands in a play-off.[36]

In 2003, Fiji hosted the South Pacific Games. The cricket tournament saw the hosts lose to Papua New Guinea in the final.[37] The following year, they took part in the EAP Challenge in Fuji City, Japan, winning after beating Tonga in the final. This qualified them for the repêchage tournament for the 2005 ICC Trophy.[38] At that tournament in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, they reached the final, where they lost to Papua New Guinea by 30 runs, thus missing out on the 2005 ICC Trophy.[39]

In 2006, Fiji played in the 2006 ICC EAP Cricket Trophy in Brisbane, Australia. They won the tournament winning all of their matches against the Cook Islands and Japan, qualifying them for Division Three of the World Cricket League in Darwin, Australia. They warmed up for the tournament with a three match series at home against Vanuatu, winning all three matches,[40] but were unsuccessful in the tournament itself, losing all five games they played,[41] thus meaning they will have to take part in Division Four in 2008.[42]

Later in 2007, they took part in the cricket tournament at the 2007 South Pacific Games, losing to Papua New Guinea in the final group game, meaning that they went home with the silver medal.[43]

Fiji took part in the 2010 ICC World Cricket League Division Five in Nepal, where they finished sixth and last and in doing so failed to win a single match in the tournament. Fiji then played in the 2011 ICC World Cricket League Division Six and finished sixth and last and in doing so were relegated to 2013 ICC World Cricket League Division Seven.

Tournament history

World Cricket League

ICC Trophy

ACC Trophy

South Pacific Games

  • 1979: Bronze medal
  • 1987: Silver medal
  • 1991: Silver medal
  • 2003: Silver medal[37]
  • 2007: Silver medal[43]
  • 2011: Silver medal

Players

Fiji's most famous player is Neil Maxwell, who played first-class cricket for New South Wales and Victoria in Australia, and for Canterbury in New Zealand in addition to representing Australia A.[52] Nat Uluiviti is the other Fijian to have played first-class cricket for a team other than Fiji, playing for Auckland in the 1950s.[53]

Current Squad

The Fiji squad at the 2015 ICC World Cricket League Division Six tournament was as follows:

See also

References

  1. ^ a b Fiji at CricketArchive
  2. ^ a b History page at official site
  3. ^ "All T20 matches between ICC members to get international status". International Cricket Council. 26 April 2018. Retrieved 1 September 2018.
  4. ^ Fiji in New Zealand, 1894/95 at Cricket Archive
  5. ^ John Udal at Cricket Archive
  6. ^ Scorecard of Auckland v Fiji, 25 January 1895 at Cricket Archive
  7. ^ Scorecard of Otago v Fiji, 1 February 1895 at Cricket Archive
  8. ^ Scorecard of Canterbury v Fiji, 8 February 1895 at Cricket Archive
  9. ^ Scorecard of Wellington v Fiji, 15 February 1895 at Cricket Archive
  10. ^ Scorecard of Hawke's Bay v Fiji, 19 February 1895 at Cricket Archive
  11. ^ Scorecard of Taranaki v Fiji, 22 February 1895 at Cricket Archive
  12. ^ Fiji in Australia, 1907-08 at CricketArchive
  13. ^ Scorecard of Queensland v Fiji, 1 January 1908 at CricketArchive
  14. ^ "Fiji Cricket Tour: Five games to be played". Auckland Star. LV (76): 7. 29 March 1924. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  15. ^ "Cricketers in Fiji". Auckland Star. LV (101): 9. 30 April 1924. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  16. ^ "N.Z. team for Fiji: Leaves by Niagara tomorrow". Auckland Star. LXVI (292): 18. 10 December 1935. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  17. ^ "Cricket in Fiji: Maoriland Team". New Zealand Herald. LXXIII (22322): 14. 21 January 1936. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  18. ^ Bell, Jamie. "The Maorilanders". NZ Cricket Museum. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
  19. ^ Fiji in New Zealand, 1947/48 at Cricket Archive
  20. ^ a b Fiji in New Zealand, 1953/54 at Cricket Archive
  21. ^ Scorecard of Fiji v West Indies, 12 January 1956 at Cricket Archive
  22. ^ Scorecard of Auckland v Fiji, 13 February 1948 at Cricket Archive
  23. ^ Scorecard of Wellington v Fiji, 1 March 1948 at Cricket Archive
  24. ^ Scorecard of Canterbury v Fiji, 5 March 1948 at Cricket Archive
  25. ^ Scorecard of Otago v Fiji, 13 March 1948 at Cricket Archive
  26. ^ Scorecard of Auckland v Fiji, 3 April 1948 at Cricket Archive
  27. ^ First-class Batting and Fielding for Fiji in New Zealand 1947/48 at Cricket Archive
  28. ^ IL Bula at Cricinfo
  29. ^ Scorecard of Otago v Fiji, 12 February 1954 at Cricket Archive
  30. ^ Scorecard of Canterbury v Fiji, 19 February 1954 at Cricket Archive
  31. ^ Scorecard of Wellington v Fiji, 26 February 1954 at Cricket Archive
  32. ^ Scorecard of Auckland v Fiji, 6 March 1954 at Cricket Archive
  33. ^ ICC Trophy matches played by Fiji at Cricket Archive
  34. ^ a b 1996 ACC Trophy results summary at Cricinfo
  35. ^ 2001 Pacifica Cup at CricketEurope
  36. ^ 2002 Pacifica Cup at CricketEurope
  37. ^ a b Report from final of the 2003 South Pacific Games
  38. ^ EAP qualifying for the 2005 ICC Trophy at the official website of the 2005 ICC Trophy
  39. ^ Scorecard of Fiji v Papua New Guinea, 27 February 2005 at Cricket Archive
  40. ^ Vanuatu in Fiji, 2006/07 at Cricket Archive
  41. ^ 2007 ICC World Cricket League Division Three Archived 24 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine. at CricketEurope
  42. ^ WCL structure for 2006–2009
  43. ^ a b Papua New Guinea take home the gold, by Andrew Nixon, 2 September 2007 at CricketEurope
  44. ^ 1979 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  45. ^ 1982 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  46. ^ 1986 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  47. ^ 1990 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  48. ^ 1994 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  49. ^ 1997 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  50. ^ 2001 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  51. ^ 2005 ICC Trophy at Cricinfo
  52. ^ Neil Maxwell at Cricket Archive
  53. ^ Nat Uluiviti at Cricket Archive

External links

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