Canada, Kenya and Netherlands join Ireland at World Cup
JOHANNESBURG: Canada, Ireland, Kenya and Netherlands will represent the minnows of cricket at the 2011 World Cup after a thrilling climax to the qualifiers on Friday.
Ireland and Canada occupied the top two places on the final Cricket World Cup Qualifier Super 8 standings in spite of losing their final mini-league games while Kenya and Netherlands triumphed to snatch the other top-four slots.
Kenya upset Ireland by six wickets in Pretoria thanks to undefeated knocks from Collins Obuya (66) and Thomas Odoyo (50) while Netherlands won by a similar margin against erratic Canada in Johannesburg.
The Irish clinched their place on Wednesday, leaving the other seven survivors fighting for three places at the quadrennial showcase of International One-day cricket.
There was some consolation for fairytale contenders Afghanistan as they came sixth behind Scotland, giving them both ODI status for the next four years and automatic entry to the 2009-2010 Inter-continental Cup.
Afghanistan completed their Super 8 fixtures with a 21-run win over Namibia in Krugersdorp while Scotland clicked after a series of dismal displays to defeat the United Arab Emirates by 122 runs in Benoni.
Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka will stage the World Cup during February and March 2011 after co-hosts Pakistan were dropped by the International Cricket Council on Friday over security concerns. UAE finished seventh and Namibia last on the standings.