As the more discerning of our readers will know, the 2012 World Twenty20 cricket championship is due to take place in September in Sri Lanka. In addition to ten places allotted to the top teams (Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, West Indies, and Zimbabwe), two berths are reserved in the finals for the second-tier squads. These countries are competing for those slots at the moment in Dubai. The sound money is on Ireland—the popular favorites from the 2010 finals and unlucky not to take Zimbabwe’s place when the International Cricket Council decided who’d automatically be in the competition—and those dark horses Afghanistan, who qualified last time to general astonishment and delight.
But spare a thought, you baseball lovers, for the U.S. cricket team, which was in a tough group with Ireland, Kenya, Namibia, and the underestimated Scotland. The U.S. just conquered the Scots, but couldn’t get past the Irish, and ended up with two wins and five losses. This means they’ll have to wait another couple of years for a taste of glory. Nonetheless, given the apparent drama that the U.S. team had to deal with off the field, it’s a miracle they even showed up at all.