The International cricket federation organises eight international tournaments for European teams during the season 2012. Sweden will participate in the ICC European Division 2 Championship. This tournament will be held in Greece, 3–8 September. Sweden will face Croatia, Cyprus, Finland, Greece, Isle of Man, Israel, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, Spain, as well as the team that wins the Division 3 tournament in June. Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Slovenia, Switzerland and Turkey are fighting for the last spot.
Currently Sweden is placed as team number 26 in the ranking for European teams. This low ranking means that Sweden is by far the lowest ranked team competing in the Division 2 clash. Israel and Croatia are the teams sporting the highest rankings, being 12th and 13th respectively. It’s not hard to see that Sweden will face some really tough competition.
The last time Sweden participated in the European Division 2 Championship, the results were not exactly elevating. Sweden only managed to win one match, against Malta. Spain, Belgium, Austria and Cyprus had too much quality. It is prudent, however, to note that Sweden had not competed on such a high level before.
If Sweden were to win the European Division 2 tournament, what happens next? One might think that Sweden would be promoted to Division 1. Cricket is, however, a sport which uses a different way of classifying teams, in comparison to football, for example. The International cricket federation uses divisions in order to put fairly equal teams together, in order to create interesting tournaments. A team winning a division will not automatically qualify for participation in a higher division. The International cricket federation instead uses the results in the qualification for the upcoming Cricket World Championship when deciding on which teams that should form the different divisions.