SCOTLAND captain Preston Mommsen believes his side will return home from the World Cup as a much-improved team despite failing to capture an elusive first win in the tournament.
The Scots were huge underdogs going into their final Pool A game against co-hosts Australia in Hobart on Saturday and although four batsmen made starts, Matt Machan top-scoring with a hard-hitting 40 from only 35 balls, five players were blasted out for ducks by the Aussie quick bowlers, for whom Mitchell Starc claimed four for 14.
Australia then defied the rain to make quick work of Scotland’s score of 130, racing to 133 for three in just 15.2 overs to claim a seven-wicket win and bring a rapid conclusion to the Scots’ tournament swansong.
However, Mommsen was remaining upbeat despite his side’s failure to break their duck.
“We take a huge amount of positives from the last six games. The more we’ve played the better we’ve become,” said Mommsen. “We leave the World Cup a much stronger team.”
Mommsen also heralded the achievement of Josh Davey, who finished the group stage as joint second leading wicket-taker after hoisting his tally to 15 when he dismissed Shane Watson.
“As a team we’re proud of his achievement – he can hold his head high,” added Mommsen.
The result saw Australia finish second to fellow hosts New Zealand in Pool A, while Scotland have now lost 14 straight World Cup games.
Australia made a quick start to their chase with Aaron Finch smashing 20 runs off ten balls before lofting a drive off Rob Taylor to Freddie Coleman at cover. Watson was then caught behind off Davey for 24, while Michael Clarke made 47 before falling to an athletic diving catch by Michael Leask on the boundary off an Iain Wardlaw delivery.
After rain delayed the resumption of play by more than an hour, new batsman David Warner wasted no time showing his intent by smashing a six and a four off his first two balls.
Warner made an unbeaten 21 off just six balls with two fours and two sixes to close out the match with James Faulkner 16 not out off six balls.
Earlier, Starc took the first and last wickets of the Scotland innings, starting with opener Kyle Coetzer in the third over for a duck. After dismissing Coetzer, Starc ended Calum MacLeod’s 22 off 19 balls with a short ball that lofted to Warner.
Mommsen was out for a duck in the next over off just his second ball and Coleman faced just seven balls before he too was out without scoring. Glenn Maxwell then had Ritchie Berrington out first ball when he offered an edge to Warner that left Scotland reeling at 72 for five.
Machan hit six boundaries in his 40, before he sent a short delivery from Pat Cummins to James Faulkner at long leg. Cummins then claimed Matt Cross three balls later for nine.
Cummins took his third wicket when he had Rob Taylor caught behind for a duck.
Starc finished the Scotland innings immediately after a rain delay of 25 minutes when he bowled Davey for 26 and Wardlaw for a duck two balls later. Leask (23) was not out at the end of the innings.