When the Netherlands came into the World Cup, they were riding on the confidence of some very good victories. The team travelling to UAE was the one that looked like making a difference finally owing to a generational side from the Orange country.
With the names like Ryan ten Doeschate, Pieter Seelaar, Max O’Dowd, county cricket regulars such as Timm van der Gugten, Brendon Glover, Fred Klaasen, Colin Ackermann along with experienced heads like Paul van Meekeren, Ben Cooper, it seemed like the team to beat in Round 1 of the competition.
However, things didn’t really pan out for the Dutch as well as they would have liked after they lost to Ireland in their first game and then were beaten by Namibia in a big upset of the T20 World Cup.
In all of this, the Dutch team managed to give one last hoorah for their legendary all-rounder Ryan ten Doeschate, who hanged his boots from international cricket on 22 October, Friday. Doeschate was called back by coach Ryan Campbell in 2017 after the right-hander had retired from international assignments after the 2011 World Cup considering the experience he bought in the line-up. He had turned 41 in July this year.
In fact, he had said before the start of the World Cup that it was going to be his last assignment in the Orange, however, no one knew that the day would come so soon that he decided to bid adieu just ahead of the team’s last game in the campaign against Sri Lanka and was therefore not included in the playing XI.
The players of the Netherlands team were expected emotional on this announcement and so was Tendo himself. In a video uploaded on the ICC website, Netherlands players Roelof van der Merwe, skipper Seelaar, wicket-keeper Scott Edwards and van der Gugten can be seen complimenting Doeschate for playing across the world and in various situations and having a successful career. In the background, Doeschate can be seen counting the teams he has played for all around the world.
Speaking on this occasion Campbell said, “What Tendo brought to us was hope that we could compete with other teams. He made the guys sitting next to him look better.”
“[It was] Probably one of my greatest moments as a coach to be able to bring him back [after the 2011 retirement]. Hopefully, we are not going to lose him forever and he will be back to help the next generation, He will probably take my job in the next couple of months, to be honest (chuckles),” added the Australian who has been trying to shape a different Dutch team since 2017.
Doeshcate, who will be turning 42 next June was humble in his farewell speech. He said, “It’s a very rare professional experience to be able to play in seven-eight countries, enjoy different cultures, different ways of playing cricket, live, learn and laugh with different sets of players. And then to be able to share those experiences has been a fun part of a long career.”
The three-time Associate Player of the Year and the batsman with the highest ODI batting average for anyone to have played the game and scored more than 500 runs further said that he was done with the game and would now like to focus on other things that include coaching.
“The desire certainly never wanes, but certainly, the ability to match that desire with the physicality and mental strength starts fading away and something internally was telling me that it’s time to go,” he said.
“I will turn my attention towards improving my skills as a coach and probably help players make their careers better. It just seems right, maybe I don’t want to hand on any longer, maybe I have gone a year too far already,” added the man with more than 2000 international runs and 68 wickets in just 57 matches in both the formats combined.
An Essex legend, Doeschate had announced his retirement from professional cricket in September this year itself and had said that T20 World Cup would be his last assignment as a player. Although he didn't score even a single run this World Cup, the man has to his name more than 25,000 runs and 517 professional wickets in his kitty.