Associate Members are countries where cricket is firmly established and organised but do not qualify for Full Membership. There are 94 Associate Members. They are eligible to play T20 cricket and some play ODI cricket too. We usually see associate teams in mega-events like the T20 World Cup and The ODI World Cup and their performance made us think that full members nations should play them in bilateral series as it will improve the cricket of associate teams. We will look at what measures the International Cricket Council can take to improve the game of associate teams.
One thing is that the full member’s nations should play with associate teams but here the hurdle is that there is a lot of cricket going on whether it is international cricket or T20 cricket and now we have Hundred and T10 cricket also. It is not easy for full members teams to play associate teams. What they can do is that they send their B and C teams to associate nations and also invite them to play with the B and C teams of full members.
One other thing is that the major T20 leagues like IPL, PSL and BigBash could send their youngsters or local players team to play with associate nations as Mumbai Indian has done by playing against Oman.
There are 94 associate nations but the performances of Scotland, (even though it is not an associate nation but is considered as a weak team) and The Netherlands is way better than the rest because they play county cricket in England which gives them exposure to evolving their game. Whatever the criteria we use we must help associate nations to grow up their game.
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