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Published on : Tuesday, January 19, 2016
The Swedish Cricket Federation and the City of Stockholm will host the 2016 European Cricket Championship in Sweden’s division. The decision was taken by the International Cricket Council (ICC), which assigned Sweden to host the World Cricket League Division II Europe. It 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 will be played from August 16-21 in Stockholm and in addition to Sweden, participating countries include Germany, Spain, Isle of Man, Israel and Gibraltar. The tournament will be carried out with initial group stages and subsequent “twenty20 cricket,” in which a match lasts for 2.5-3 hours.
“We’re extremely pleased and proud that Stockholm has been assigned the European Cricket Championship, which is proof not only of the emergence of cricket in Sweden, but also of Stockholm’s capacity to arrange and attract international athletic championships. We look forward to being able to offer European championship matches in downtown Stockholm,” says Emilia Bjuggren, sports commissioner in the City of Stockholm.
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 voted into the Swedish Sports Confederation and played in four different divisions and youth tournaments; it is now played throughout Sweden.
“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.