Three of the ICC's top Associates face off over the next week in an ODI tri-series in South Africa as they make their final preparations towards next March's ICC Cricket World Cup in the West Indies.

Tomorrow (Sunday) Canada take on the Netherlands in the opening game of the series at Sedgars Park, Potchefstroom and although it is the first international match the Canadians have played since beating the USA by 10 wickets in King City back in August, it's not like their players have been taking it easy.

Four of the Canadians have been among the stars of the recent seven-week ICC Winter Training Camp in Pretoria with Abdool Samad and Ashish Bagai particularly impressing the world-class coaching staff at the camp that included Tim Boon, Rod Marsh, Kepler Wessels and Gary Kirsten.

Indeed, their intensive training over the past couple of months has obviously been of great benefit to Samad and Bagai as they top-scored for their country in a warm-up game against the University of Pretoria (TUKS) this week. Canada lost the game but Samad (80 not out) and Bagai (100) shone and will be the prize wickets for the Netherlands and Bermuda over the coming days.

Canada will be without talisman all-rounder John Davidson and front-line batsman Ian Bilcliff but they have several other potential match-winners in the form of captain George Codrington, spinner Sunil Dhaniram and fast-bowler Umar Bhatti. The emerging 22-year-old left-armer has fast been making a name for himself as one of the top Associate bowlers in the world at present.

The Netherlands have just come from a tough ICC Intercontinental Cup match against Bermuda in Pretoria and following that drawn game they have now no chance of progressing through the group stage of that competition with Canada untouchable at the top of Group B.

But the game was not without its positives for the Dutch. The batting of Ryan ten Doeschate continues to impress - the 26-year-old former Western Province all-rounder scored a hundred in each innings of that match and is clearly the Netherlands' man in form. He also took the wickets of three of the top four Bermudan batsmen in the first innings.

Hugely experienced opener Bas Zuiderent is also in good nick as is Daan van Bunge and slow left-arm bowler Muhammed Kashif. Van Bunge and Kashif were also among those who took part in the recent ICC Winter Training Camp in Pretoria.

Tomorrow's match will take place in Sedgars Park, Potchefstroom, while Monday will see Bermuda enter the fray with a game against Canada at the same venue. Bermuda put up a fine performance in that ICC Intercontinental Cup match against the Dutch this week. Replying to the Dutch total of 378 all out, the Bermudans hit a remarkable 620.

They are fortunate to have the services of Glamorgan batsman David Hemp, who made an unbeaten 247 in that game, the highest individual score in the history of the competition. Hemp, who was born in Bermuda but has lived for many years in the UK, was recently named as Glamorgan captain for the 2007 season, taking over from former England off-spinner Robert Croft.

The umpires for tomorrow's game and all three fixtures in Sedgars Park will be Russell Tiffin from the Emirates International Panel of ICC Umpires and Jeff Luck from the Associates and Affiliates Panel of ICC Umpires, while the referee will be Mike Procter from the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees. Third umpire for those matches will be Karl Hurter and fourth umpire will be Roderick Ellis.

On Thursday (30 November) the action moves to Willowmoore Park, Benoni, for the last three matches of the series. Mike Procter will remain as match referee while the on-field umpires will be Subhash Modi of the ICC Associates and Affiliates Umpires Panel and Russell Tiffin from the Emirates International Panel of ICC Umpires. Third umpire for those games will be Marais Erasmus and fourth umpire will be Brad White.

  • Sunday 26 Nov: Canada v Netherlands, Sedgars Park
  • Monday 27 Nov: Bermuda v Canada, Sedgars Park
  • Tuesday 28 Nov: Bermuda v Netherlands, Sedgars Park
  • Thursday 30 Nov: Bermuda v Canada, Willowmoore Park
  • Friday 1 Dec: Canada v Netherlands, Willowmoore Park
  • Saturday 2 Dec: Bermuda v Netherlands, Willowmoore Park

Bermuda (squad): Irving Romaine, Dean Minors, Janeiro Tucker, Saleem Mukuddern, Stephen Outerbridge, Hasan Durham, Dwayne Leverock, Clay Smith, Ryan Steede, Lionel Cann, Kevin Hurdle, Kwame Tucker, Rodney Trott, Stefan Kelly, David Hemp.

Netherlands (squad): Bas Zuiderent, Tom de Groot, Eric Szwarczynski, Ryan ten Doeschate, Billy Stelling, Jeroen Smits, Luuk van Troost, Mark Jonkman, Peter Borren, Alexei Kervezee, Daan van Bunge, Pieter Seelaar, Muhammed Kashif.

Canada (squad): George Codrington, Qaiser Ali, Desmond Chumney, Sandeep Jyoti, Sunil Dhaniram, Don Maxwell, Abdool Samad, Ashish Bagai, Asif Mulla, Kevin Sandher, Umar Bhatti, Henry Osinde, Sanjay Thuraisingham.