ICC Official Tournament Preview
Scotland’s direct qualification hopes were ended when it lost a nail-biting match against Ireland by one wicket with one ball to spare in Belfast. Preston Mommsen hit 91 not out to underpin Scotland’s 223 for nine. When Ireland slipped to 146 for seven and 209 for nine, it seemed that the visitor would edge home, only for Ireland’s tailenders to have the final say.
Batsman Kyle Coetzer, who plays county cricket for Northamptonshire, had an outstanding tournament with the bat – hitting 595 runs in just 11 innings. Calum MacLeod (284) and Mommsen (267) were the next best batsmen. Gary Goudie made an excellent start with the ball – taking 15 wickets in seven matches. Experienced spinner Majid Haq also finished with 15 wickets, but from six more outings.
Haq and Goudie again found themselves going head to head in the wickets table during November’s ICC WT20Q – ending with 15 and 12 wickets respectively. Matt Machan proved to be a welcome addition to the batting line-up and was a spectacular success in the UAE with 364 runs. MacLeod and Richie Berrington also provided consistent performances in the event, hitting 308 and 279 runs respectively.
Scotland was pipped to a direct play-off spot by Nepal but managed to keep alive its hopes for qualification to the ICC WT20 2014 with three straight wins after losing three of its first four group matches. Scotland’s batsmen came to the fore during its run of victories – scoring 181, 165 and 205 against PNG, Netherlands and Denmark respectively.
Victory over Italy in a qualifying play-off then gave the Scots a clash with Netherlands to decide the sixth and final qualification spot. Machan (61) and Michael Leask (58) put on 111 for the third-wicket but the Scotland innings fell away thereafter, and the Netherlands secured victory.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Young batsman Matt Machan has made a huge impact on the team since his Scotland debut in early 2013. The left-hander, who plays county cricket at Sussex, hit 44 against Afghanistan in his first ICC WCLC match in March. That was followed three matches later with 114 against Kenya. Machan built on good beginnings with a scintillating ICC WT20Q later in the year, hitting 364 runs at an average of 45.50. Within that effort came three half-centuries – 61 and 67 not out against the Netherlands and 90 not out off55 balls against Denmark.