Wales national cricket team
|Part of the England and Wales Cricket Board (n/a)
|21 July 1923 v Scotland at Perth, Scotland
|World Cup Qualifier
|1 (first in 1979)
|First round, 1979
|As of 11 September 2006
The Welsh cricket team (Welsh: Tîm criced cenedlaethol Cymru) is the representative cricket team for Wales. Despite Wales and England being represented in Test Cricket by the England team, the Welsh cricket team continues to play short form cricket periodically.
From 1923 to 1930 Wales played 16 first-class matches, and had some success against touring teams, drawing with the New Zealanders in 1927 and beating the West Indians a year later, as well as losing by only ten runs to the South Africans in 1929. Sydney Barnes, by this time well into his fifties, took 49 first-class wickets for Wales, including 7–51 in that 1928 win over the Caribbean tourists.
They next played Israel and piled up a daunting 234/5, this time Hopkins opened the batting and again top scored with 92, Geoffrey Williams hit 67. Some effective bowling by Alan Geoghegan (3/23) limited Israel and Wales finished the match 91 runs ahead.
The match against United States, was an exciting affair. chasing a respectable total of 190, the Welsh were on target at 139/4 (Geoff Ellis making 56), but an unexpected and excellent spell of bowling from Kamran Rasheed (more usually a wicket-keeper) turned the game. He took 5–17 in his eight overs and Wales were dismissed for 182, just eight runs short.
The game against Sri Lanka was abandoned without a ball being bowled. As a result, Wales finished equal first on 10 points in group C but lost out on a Semi-final spot to Sri Lanka due to their superior run rate. Hopkins finished with 168 runs to his name, joint 6th for the tournament and the highest of any player to exit at the group stage.
Wales took part in the British Isles Championship (or Triple Crown Tournament) between 1993 and 2001; this was an initiative to help develop cricket in British Isles involving Wales, Scotland, Ireland and various England amateur XIs. Wales hosted the event in 1996 and 2000 but never won the annual tournament in its nine years.
As Scotland and Ireland became ICC members the tournament was discontinued and the two have since competed in the ICC's European Cricket Championship. As Wales is not an ICC member in its own right the team cannot feature in the ICC competition, as a result Wales has not played competitive international cricket since the discontinuation of the British Isles Championship.
From 2002 to 2004 Wales played a 50-over challenge match against England each June. In the first of these games they recorded a shock eight-wicket victory, with Steve James making 83 not out, though the other two games went to England. Wales' team consisted mostly of Welsh cricketers, although there were a scattering of non-Welsh Glamorgan players such as Michael Kasprowicz and Dean Cosker.
In 1988, a Wales Minor Counties team under the control of the Welsh Cricket Association, the governing body for amateur cricket in Wales made its first appearance in the Holt Cup, a one-day tournament for minor-county teams. Since then, the Wales MC side has appeared regularly in the NatWest Trophy (and its successor, the C&G Trophy) as well as in the Minor Counties Championship, their most notable result probably the seven-wicket win over Denmark in the first round of the 2004 C&G Trophy (which due to the vagaries of the schedule was actually played in August 2003).
There have been calls for the country to be represented by its own national team as in other sports. Criticism has been made of the England and Wales Cricket Board using only the England name whilst utilising Welsh players such as Simon Jones, who was instrumental in England winning the Ashes from Australia in 2005.