Cricket News By TODAYLIVESCORE.INFO - 'No bigger game than the next' - Kyle Coetzer taking it one at a time. Slotted in Group A alongside Bangladesh, Oman and Papua New Guinea, Scotland are well-placed to qualify to the Super 12
Slotted in Group A alongside Bangladesh, Oman and Papua New Guinea, Scotland are well-placed to qualify to the Super 12
In Group A, slotted alongside Bangladesh, Oman and Papua New Guinea, Scotland may be well-placed to qualify to the Super 12 of the upcoming T20 WC, but skipper Kyle Coetzer is vary of taking any team lightly.
“Every game is as it comes,” Coetzer said on Saturday. “There is no bigger game than the next. We understand the dangers in every game. For us, every team has the ability to win games. We have to respect that as best as we can but also not fear it. We have to be able to go out there and play our style of cricket. We know the dangers Oman pose to us. They've played some good cricket against us over the years. We look forward to those games. On any given day, you have to look forward to that and respect the opposition.”
Scotland may have struggled in the hot climes of UAE during the qualifiers, but they still boast of a really strong and in-form batting line-up, with the likes of George Munsey, Richie Berrington and Calum McCleod capable enough to give even some of the more fancied teams a tough time.
The hard-hitting Munsey, in specific, will be a threat. The southpaw strikes at a rate of 153.36 in T20Is and would remain the key player in unsettling opposition attacks. Coetzer believes Munsey has the ability to influence the team with his batting.
“George is a fantastic player,” Coetzer said, lavishing praises on the 28-year-old. “He has been playing exceptionally well recently. He has been a consistent performer for us in T20 cricket – prior to the pandemic and after the pandemic. He has developed into a dangerous player. What he does do well is he works very well in partnership with whoever he is playing. He is able to take the pressure off the other batter that's in and work together with them.
“There are dangerous players throughout our line-up, and George is just one of them, who is ready to make a scene in international cricket. Ultimately, it comes down to him when and how he does that. How he makes decisions in pressure situations. He is certainly in fine form where he feels he can really influence our team with the bat.”
One of the more interesting finds that Scotland have is the fast-spinning leggie Chris Greaves, who made his T20I debut against PNG in early October. Even though Mark Watt and Hamza Tahir have been the preferred spin options for Scotland, Greaves could make a case for himself.
“Chris is a character,” Coetzer said. “He is full of energy. He likes to get on the field. He's got the never say die attitude. Being a wrist spinner, you've got to be confident, be willing to want the ball in your hand and take on the challenges you face on any given day. Chris is willing to do that on and off the field. He's had to fight really hard to be among the squad.
“To see the way he has taken the opportunities coming his way has been really exciting for us as well as him. Having a wrist spinner among your squad, in any T20 team, is a really valuable asset. And Chris has certainly added to our bowling attack and spin department.”
There will be several selection headaches for Scotland going into the world cup, but the skipper believes that it isn't a problem he minds.
“I'm sure every captain and coach is going to have a tough selection challenge,” he said. “Picking a team for any international team for a world cup fixture is tough. We do realise we have those challenges. Not that we haven't had it in the past, but it is tougher than it has ever been. It puts Scots cricket in a very good position and creates real competition for place. That is really important and so valuable moving into this tournament. We're in a really good place and picking the final XI will be tough but it's a problem that we want to have.”
The bigger challenge, however, lies in improving Scotland's record at the world cup. Coetzer feels the victory against Hong Kong in the previous edition was a much-needed relief for the team, but there is still a long way to go ahead.
“The only way you can prepare yourself for that (world cup matches) is by putting yourself in those situations,” he said. “By willing to try to train as best as you can under pressure, challenge your players whenever appropriate, as often as you can, will give you those opportunities.
“Yes, we've missed opportunities at the world cup to win games that we could've probably gone over the line. That's something that we seem to have banished in recent times. Winning games of cricket and performing under pressure is the key area for us. Having beaten Hong Kong in the last world cup has helped us get the monkey off our backs of not winning any games at the world cup. We've done that and now it's time to move on and think for the next stage, try to push for the Super 12s.”