Image courtesy of: Zimbio
Yovich is one of the founding members of New Zealand Croatia
New Zealand Croatia, who are a side comprising of New Zealand cricketers of Croatian descent, have set sail to the Cook Islands for their maiden tour.
The side will participate in a tri-series involving Cook Island’s senior and Under-19 squads from August 12 to 16.
Joseph Yovich, one of the sides founding members, who also happens to be their opening batsman, stated that this was an amazing opportunity for his side to discover the joys of touring other nations to play cricket.
“New Zealand Croatia is distinct from the Croatia national team, and creates another great opportunity for cricketers with Croatian heritage in New Zealand to unite, to learn more about the 200-year history of the game in Croatia, and the link it has with New Zealand,” Yovich said. “It will strengthen those bonds within the game and, at the same time, we’ll be helping develop cricket in the Cook Islands – an ICC Affiliate member – which has very strong links to New Zealand, and particularly Northern Districts, which assists with coaching and resources in the islands.”
Cricket was first introduced in Croatia when British soldiers established a base in the country during the Napoleonic Wars, which lasted from 1803 to 1815.
After they left, interest in the game dwindled and it wasn’t until a couple of New Zealand and Australian cricketers moved to the country in the 1990s that interest started to increase once again.
New Zealand Croatia squad: Matthew Adsett, John Arnerich, Brad Bennetto, Anthony Govorko, Daniel Marsic, James Piskulic, Matthew Vujcich, Anton Vujcich, John Vujnovich, Paul Vujnovich, Joseph Yovich.