Scots fear nobody on the big stage

Safyaan Sharif
Safyaan Sharif

Safyaan Sharif says Scotland are ready to upset the odds and make a real impact at the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup.

The Falkland Cricket Club captain is part of the 15 man national squad which leaves for the event in Australia and New Zealand this weekend.

Life is certainly going to be tough for the Scots, who are hoping to win just their first World Cup fixture Down Under, but Sharif reckons he and his team mates have enough about them to leave their stamp.

Scotland are due to face cricketing might in Pool A opponents England, Australia, Sri Lanka and New Zealand but will fancy their chances of taking something from other group challengers Afghanistan and Bangladesh.

Sharif says the Scottish squad is raring to get on the crease.

He said: “I’m preparing to get going now on the biggest stage of them all.

“We have a really good side and we want to go and show just how good we are against the best teams.

“We’ve been playing well recently in tournaments and won the ICC qualifiers so we feel we’re ready for the World Cup.”

The country qualified for the World Cup thanks to the side’s showing in the ICC qualifiers in New Zealand where Sharif helped Scotland to victory over the UAE in the final.

Scotland have warmed up for the World Cup by completing seven ODIs, including a one-off home game against England, a three-match series in Ireland and the recently-concluded tri-series with Afghanistan and Ireland in the UAE.

The Scots showed what they are capable of in the UAE competition, despite two opening defeats, according to Sharif.

He said: “We didn’t do well to start with but after the first two games we started to show how we can play.

“In our second game against Afghanistan (which Scotland won by 150 runs) we were back to our best and we’ll take that into the World Cup.”

Heading Down Under, Sharif says the side will play to its strengths.

“Our aim is to be the best fielding team in the competition,” he said.

“We want to make teams really struggle to score runs against us.”

On returning Sharif will again look to make an impact at club side Falkland, saying he “loved” last season.