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Scotland creating a new cricket legacy with T20 World Cup progress ahead of Super 12 bow

Calum Macleod, right, now wants Scotland to make a name for themselves in the Super 12.
Calum Macleod, right, now wants Scotland to make a name for themselves in the Super 12.

Legacy may be a difficult word to qualify but over the last 10 days, the Scotland cricket team have certainly enhanced their own.

Three wins from three saw them top their T20 World Cup group and qualify for the Super 12, where they will face the super-powers of India, Pakistan and New Zealand.

Prior to this tournament, Scotland had only won one World Cup game. To treble that in three polished performances in Oman may have surprised some on the outside but within the camp, there is a belief they belong on the world stage with the best.

The Scotland players have also spoken about how their exploits across the world might inspire a new generation back home. That may be where legacy comes into play.

“It’s not something that’s in my thoughts when I’m playing but when you get the chance to sit back and reflect on it you realise it’s important,” said batter Calum Macleod. “I remember the 1999 World Cup. I was only 10 or 11 and went down there to watch Scotland. I can still remember now as a kid thinking, ‘I want to do that’.

“Hopefully if we can put in performances that inspire some boys and girls to pick up a bat and cricket ball that will be a great side effect of what we’re doing out here. That’s something the sport back home can hopefully capitalise on.”

Calum Macleod in action for Scotland against Papua New Guinea.
Calum Macleod in action for Scotland against Papua New Guinea.

As reward for their wins over Bangladesh, Papua New Guinea and Oman, Scotland have also secured a place at the next T20 World Cup in Australia in 2022.

“I’d hope to hang on longer for just one more year!” added Macleod. “But it did kind of get forgotten until the bus back from the Oman game. I was talking to Michael Jones (reserve) and Australia came up and that’s when we realised we’d qualified for that too.

“It’s inspiring and motivating. I know in the past guys found being a Scottish cricketer hard as you didn’t always have events on the horizon. Now we know that’s definitely happening and you can work towards that and train properly throughout next year. That will give us a great focus and determination ahead of doing it all again. But we’ve got plenty of unfinished business in this one first.”

A long-term ambition for Cricket Scotland has been to become a full-member of the ICC, allowing them to play competitive international cricket in all formats of the game against the best nations in the world.

They face a former associate foe today in Sharjah, with Afghanistan their fixture in the Super 12 and also an example to aspire towards.

“We want to be the leading associate, we want to push our case to be the next full member and if we look specifically at how Afghanistan and Ireland did it, they did it by doing well at World Cups and we now have five great opportunities to go out and show world cricket what this team is all about,” added Macleod.

“For the players it is a great opportunity to showcase some of the T20 skills that this group has and get them out there on the world stage and you never know what opportunities can come off the back of this.”

Scotland players celebrate the dismissal of Oman’s batsman Kashyap Prajapati.

Scotland have now relocated from Oman to the UAE, where their five Super 12 games will be played.

After Sharjah on Monday, they will face Namibia in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday before a week’s break ahead of their fixture against New Zealand in Dubai. They play India in Dubai on November 5 and return to Sharjah for their final encounter against Pakistan two days later.

Only two teams qualify from each group to make the semi-finals and the odds are against Scotland making it further. But as we have seen very recently, this Scotland team thrives on making a name for themselves.

“There’s a lot of excitement there and we want to enjoy this opportunity to go out and play some of the biggest countries in the world,” said Macleod.

“We want to go out there to try to beat them and show what we can do. There are games there we can win and that’s what the aim will be in all of them.”

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