Scotland reaction to Afghanistan reverse is next T20 test says Shane Burger

Scotland cricket head coach Shane Burger believes character is defined by how you bounce back from setbacks - and he wants his players to forget about the thumping loss to Afghanistan on Monday and “regroup and reset” quickly.

Afghanistan players celebrate the dismissal of Scotland's George Munsey during the Cricket Twenty20 World Cup match between Afghanistan and Scotland in Sharjah, UAE, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)
Afghanistan players celebrate the dismissal of Scotland's George Munsey during the Cricket Twenty20 World Cup match between Afghanistan and Scotland in Sharjah, UAE, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

Scotland had never beaten Afghanistan in six previous T20 internationals - and they never looked like winning this one as 190-4 played 60 all out in Sharjah in the UAE.

The 130-run loss was a reminder about just how tough the Super 12s phase is going to be with world class opponents coming thick and fast over the next two weeks.

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“Obviously this result is a tough pill to swallow, we have had really good momentum recently so you get into a rhythm of what that feels like and this feels different,” Burger said.

Afghanistan's Rashid Khan celebrates the wicket of Scotland's Brad Wheal during the Cricket Twenty20 World Cup match between Afghanistan and Scotland in Sharjah, UAE, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

“But this competition doesn’t allow you to think about things for long, we have another game on Wednesday and we have to regroup and reset and go again against Namibia.

“We will have learnt a lot from this defeat, cricket is all about fine margins and we didn’t quite get momentum on our side and Afghanistan showed - via some world class players - that they are able to pile on pressure at the right times and in T20 cricket things can go against you quickly.

“You can speak about how teams play and train for what they will bring as much as you want, but until you get out there in the action you can’t be ready for it and we wanted to be more proactive rather than reactive.

“We wanted to bowl better lengths and take the pace off the ball as well as managing the small boundary, but the execution wasn’t quite there.

Scotland's Mark Watt appeals unsuccessfully for the wicket of Afghanistan's Rahmanullah Gurbaz during the Cricket Twenty20 World Cup match between Afghanistan and Scotland in Sharjah, UAE, Monday, Oct. 25, 2021. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

“I don’t think this loss defines us a team or defines the players as individuals, it was a game that got away from us, but character is defined by how you come back from something like this.

“As a plus, I thought Mark Watt bowled excellent [the spinner took 1-23], but in general we have to forget about this quickly and go again.”

Scotland-Namibia is on Wednesday in Abu Dhabi at 3pm UK time.

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