Buckhaven’s Safyaan Sharif is gearing up as Scotland’s cricket side takes its first steps in its bid to qualify for next year’s ICC Cricket World Cup in England and Wales.
It’s a tough path for the Scots to tread if they’re to make it to the World Cup, with the country first having to compete at the the 2019 Cricket World Cup Qualifiers in Zimbabwe throughout March.
They will meet Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe and Nepal in group fixtures before a knockout format comes in to decide which two nations will join the hosts and the seven teams who have already qualified through their ranking in the ICC ODI Championship.
Sharif was a part of the national squad which competed at the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup, held in Australia and New Zealand.
Since then, though, the Buckhaven cricketer, who plays his club cricket with Glenrothes, has forced himself into the starting side and is one of the country’s top stars.
It’s been an historic year for cricket in this country with Scotland recording victories over two full member nations in Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe.
Grant Bradburn’s team is in good form and has now moved into the final stages of their preparation for the qualifiers.
This included January’s ODI Tri-Series against Ireland and UAE in Dubai.
After warm-up matches against PNG and Ireland in Bulawayo, Scotland play their first match in Group B against Afghanistan on March 4 before continuing against Hong Kong, Nepal and Zimbabwe.