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16/08/2005: National Team Annoucement 

Aug 15, 2005 
NPO Japan Cricket Association 
JCA Selection Panel 

The JCA Selection Panel today selected the final 14 players for EAP Cricket Cup in Vanuatu coming up at the end of September, 2005. 
The JCA Selection Panel have decided to go with a strategy of bringing in some younger players into the squad, as well as a side well balanced in terms of a long batting line up and a different mixture of pace and slower bowlers. 
4 new batsmen will make their debut for Japan in this tour, with Yoshiyuki Hirose (Wyverns CC), Ko Irie (British Embassy CC), Masaomi Kobayashi (Max CC) and Sriram Sampath (Indian Engineers CC) all new to the team. The Selection Panel noted that a strengthening in the batting department was necessary from last year's EAP Cricket Challenge in Fuji, when the team struggled to go past 200 until the final match. The Selectors are very confident that the new players all bring different styles of batting to the team, and their selections are based on consistent run scoring efforts in the Kanto Cricket League and the selection trials held over the past 2 months. These players have been added to the returning batsmen of Junior Takahashi (Fuji Far East CC) Tetsuo Fuji (Millennium CC), Jummei Hanada (Wyverns CC) and Munir Ahmed (Millennium CC), which makes for a powerful line-up. 
"All of the selected batsmen can build innings but also hit the ball when necessary", said selector Robb McKenna, "We believe that some of our batting deficiencies from the past have been greatly improved by this line-up." 
In the bowling department, new faces are young leg spinner Kenji Murata (British Embassy CC), and left armers Razaq Cheema (Millennium CC) and Patrick Giles-Jones (Kobe R & AC), the first player ever from a Kansai Club to be selected in the National team. They will join incumbents Naoki Miyaji (Hampstead CC), now based and playing in England, and another left armer Yuta Matsubara (Millennium CC). 
Giles-Jones has been the bolter of the team, coming from obscurity to earn a starting berth with very strong performances opening the bowling in the last 2 selection camps. His quick left arm bowling has impressed all of the selectors, particularly with his ability to bowl tightly and consistently take wickets. He has also showed a handy ability with the bat, and could fill in any position in the order if necessary. 
Kenji Murata is an exciting young leg spinning talent, and with the tendency for the big hitting 
teams of the Pacific to struggle against good slow bowling, a gamble has been made on his ability to take wickets when the opposition tries to up the run-rate at crucial time. 

His combination with the spin bowling of Munir Ahmed could possibly bring big rewards for Japan in certain matches. 
Razaq Cheema has been a consistent performer in national team trials and the KCL over the past few years, and has earned his spot with pure weight of performance. He provides another left arm bowling option, as well as powerful lower order batting. 

In the end, Tatsuro Chino (Wyverns CC) has been named as wicket keeper who was selected as one of Team of the tournament in last year's EAP Cricket Challenge. 
The selectors believe that their slow bowling options are greatly increased with this line-up, as well as the ability to create the different angles that left handers bring to a game. Combined with Japan's strengthened batting line-up as well as their always tight and athletic fielding, it is believed that a very young and attacking side has been put together, which will also stand the side in good stead for the future. 
The final line-up is: 
Tetsuo Fuji (Captain)  Millennium CC 
Jummei Hanada (Vice Captain) Wyverns CC 
Munir Ahmed   Millennium CC 
Razaq Cheema   Millennium CC 
Tatsuro Chino   Wyverns CC 
Patrick Giles-Jones  Kobe R & AC 
Yoshiyuki Hirose  Wyverns CC 
Ko Irie    British Embassy CC 
Masaomi Kobayashi  MAX CC 
Yuta Matsubara   Millennium CC 
Naoki (Alex) Miyaji  Hampstead CC (England) 
Kenji Murata   British Embassy CC 
Sriram Sampath   Indian Engineers CC 
Hirokazu (Junior) Takahashi Fuji Far East CC 

Reserves are: 

Mumtaz Alam   Tokyo Giants CC 
David Gleeson   Kobe R & AC 
Shuichiro Nakamura  Wyverns CC 
Kazuhisa Orita   Fuji Far East CC 

All enquiries about the selections can be made to Robb McKenna at robbmckenna@hotmail.com