Borren century sets up Dutch victory over Scotland

ICC Europe/CricketEurope

A superb century from Peter Borren and excellent spells of bowling by Geert Maarten Mol and Tim Gruijters secured an opening day win for The Netherlands in their match against Scotland in Amstelveen.

Borren’s knock of 116, made off 104 deliveries with 15 boundaries and only ending off the very last ball of the innings when he was caught on the midwicket boundary, saw the Dutch side through to a total of 240 for eight, but it will be a matter of concern to coach Peter Borren and skipper Eric Szwarczynski that the next highest score was opener Mol’s 28.

Ironically, Borren was only called up into the squad at the last minute, after four late withdrawals. Atse Buurman took over the wicketkeeping duties from the injured Stijn Allema, who relinquished the captaincy to Szwarczynski, while the other additions, replacing Maurits Jonkman, Wesley Barresi and Ruud Nijman, were Lesley Stokkers and Vinoo Tewarie.

Stokkers opened the batting with Mol after Szwarczynski called correctly, and they put on 44 in a steady opening stand before Richie Berrington, in his first over, trapped Stokkers in front. Mol followed soon afterwards, bowled by Stuart Chalmers, but Szwarczynski and Borren now added 59 for the third wicket.

This stand ended when the captain was run out for 22, and with Bashir Shah bowling a fine spell in which he dismissed both Buurman and Tim Gruijters, The Netherlands were in a spot of trouble at 116 for five.

Borren stood firm, however, supported first by Jeroen Brand, with whom he added 45, and then by Jelte Schoonheim, whose contribution to a seventh-wicket partnership of 54 was only 12. Borren’s innings now reached a crescendo, and he plundered the powerplay overs mercilessly, reaching his hundred and unleashing a succession of powerful strokes all round the wicket.

Berrington, who was rewarded with Borren’s wicket off his final delivery, was the most successful of the Scottish bowlers with three for 34.

Leading off the Scottish reply, Ryan Flannigan and Omer Hussain began in positive vein, and although Mark Jonkman in particular bowled a fine opening spell the score quickly raced to 50. Soon afterwards Mol came into the attack, and almost immediately induced a false stroke by Hussain, who holed out to Schoonheim at mid-off.

The Dutch allrounder produced an excellent spell of medium-pace bowling, repeatedly beating the bat, restricting the scoring, and, after Borren had accounted for Qasim Sheikh, removing first Ewan Chalmers, smartly stumped by Buurman, and then, in his final over, bowling Flannigan.

The Scottish opener had made 65, off 81 deliveries with eight fours and a six, and his dismissal was a crucial turning point in the game.

Spinner Thijs van Schelven and seamer Tim Gruijters now took over the attack, and although Berrington batted well for 28, with the total on 155 he became the first of four victims for Gruijters, and the Scottish chase had clearly begun to falter.

Matthew Parker worked hard to hold things together, but with Gruijters cleaning up at the other end to finish with four for 16, it was only a matter of time before he lashed out at Stokkers and was caught at long off to end the innings.

Scotland finished on 169, losing by 71 runs. They will have a chance to regroup when they meet Denmark on Wednesday, while the Dutch will need to raise their game further when they take on Ireland in Rotterdam.