Sachin Tendulkar has called for Scotland to be given ‘more opportunities’ to face ‘more experienced’ teams in the wake of the One Day International victory over England at Grange yesterday.
The Indian cricket legend, regarded as one of the game’s greatest batsmen of all time, took to Twitter in the aftermath of Scotland’s six-run victory over England.
Tendulkar wrote: “Cricket has all the ingredients to become a global game. Teams with massive potential like Afghanistan, Ireland, Scotland along with many others have to be given more opportunities to play against the more experienced teams. Best way to provide great exposure.”
Scotland’s victory over the world’s leading ODI team came barely three months after Grant Bradburn’s side narrowly failed to reach the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
The Scots came close to stunning the West Indies during the World Cup Qualifier Super Sixes competition in March in Zimbabwe, but rain stopped play and the re-calculated score based on the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern (DLS) method sent the Windies to next year’s finals.
The International Cricket Council (ICC) had taken the decision to reduce the number of teams in the World Cup from 14 to ten, with just two teams advancing from the Super Sixes event.
While the World Cup schedule will be reduced by just one match compared to 2015’s tournament, the decision to trim the number of teams involved was met with disbelief, especially from the smaller nations.
Scotland captain Kyle Coetzer said in the aftermath of the loss to the Windies: “We would have qualified for the World Cup last time around, now there are ten teams and no associate teams, which is pretty disappointing.
“We have guys in the top wicket-takers and top run-scorers which just shows we are mixing with “full member nations”, as they’re called.
“I’m gutted for our guys and every friend, fan or associate nation that was behind us. There is a clear reason why everyone was behind us: because they wanted a point to be proved. We were within five runs.”
The Scotland skipper also voiced his concerns that Scotland only had three fixtures this summer - the ODI against England, and the two Twenty20 games against Pakistan.
Coetzer added: “When you’ve got a very quiet schedule, what are you training for? What are you preparing for? As a team we need something to be targeting, and for us that’s the World Cup.
“World Cups are where memories are made and what people want to play in.
• READ MORE - England’s Eoin Morgan: ‘We just didn’t play at our best’
“We’ve shown in [the Super Sixes competition] that we are a thriving, capable squad of players who want to go places. And how are we going to do that if there’s no World Cup, no cricket?”
Now Coetzer’s comments appear to have been echoed by Tendulkar who, like many across the cricketing world, is keen to see the associate members granted greater exposure and involvement in tournaments to help raise the game’s profile.