Scotland forced Holland to go to the wire in their opening T20 Quadrangular Series clash in Oman but it was not enough to prevent a seven-wicket defeat.
The Saltires had acting head coach Toby Bailey in charge for the first time but the former Northampton wicketkeeper’s reign got off to an inauspicious start at the Al Amerat Stadium.
Skipper Kyle Coetzer and Matt Cross both fell early without contributing much but Calum MacLeod continued his impressive run of form by rattling off 53 from 45 balls to help steady Scotland’s ship.
The wickets continued to tumble, though, and the Scots’ total of 153 for seven looked an achievable feat for the Dutch.
And it appeared to be going so smoothly as Stephan Myburgh and Tobias Visee combined for an opening partnership of 100 before Myburgh fell to Michael Leask, with Visee going on to contribute 71 from 43 balls.
But the run-rate slowed and Holland had to wait until the penultimate ball to claim the winning run thanks to a wayward Ruaidhri Smith delivery as they finished on 154 for three.
Scotland will hope to bounce back when they face Ireland on Friday before Sunday’s final showdown with the hosts.