T20 World Cup: Scotland beat West Indies but now need another win

The stunning two-time T20 world champion West Indies is one of the biggest moments in Scottish cricket, but the team’s task has only just begun.

The Scots beat the Group B favorites in the Men’s T20 World Cup by 42 points and now need to beat Ireland or Zimbabwe to have any chance of making the Super 12.

Both teams are above 15th-placed Scotland in the T20 world rankings.

“It was the performance of their lives because it was a must-win game,” said former Scotland captain Preston Mommsen.

“They had to win because they know how difficult it will be to beat this team,” Mommsen told Sky Sports.

This opening round of the World Cup in Australia features two teams of four, with the top two qualifying for the Super 12, when the world’s elite enter the competition.

Ireland, who Scotland play next, are 12th in the world and Zimbabwe 11th, so while the Scots will be the underdogs in those games, they have already seen off the seventh-ranked West Indies, albeit without big names like Chris Gayle. Dwayne Bravo, Andre Russell and Kieron Pollard.

One more win is likely to see the Scots through to the next stage, although there is a scenario where three teams could finish with two wins, meaning progress would drop to the top flight.

If the agonizing start feels very ‘Scottish’ due to the slightly lower run-rate, the good news is that Hobart’s opening win has left a healthy 2.1.

Whichever team wins the Scottish pool will advance to a Super 12s section along with Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, South Africa and the runners-up from the other opening group.

The runner-up will join Afghanistan, Australia, England, New Zealand and the Group A winners in the next stage, which begins on October 22.

Scotland reached the Super 12 stage of last year’s T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates, advancing from an easier starting group that included Oman, Bangladesh and Papua New Guinea.

It was the first time Scotland had made it past the first round of a cricket world cup.

Shane Burger’s side face Ireland – They lost the match against Zimbabwe – on Wednesday (05:00 BST) as the West Indies play in the African nation, knowing they can’t afford any more bounce.

Burger is adamant that when the Scots face Ireland – who will be out if they lose – the Scots will make a similar commitment after being so thoroughly dominated by the West Indies in Tasmania.

“It’s always great when a game plan comes together, you’re able to execute even bigger and everything goes your way,” he told BBC Scotland.

“I suppose the pressure is on to make sure we’re ready for the next game against Ireland – we’ll be ready for that game.

“Losing the toss and batting first gave us an opportunity to do what we do very well – bat first, put up a total and come out and defend. We try to play like the Trojans and that’s what we did.

“On the cricket field I saw 11 people who are all committed to their roles, they all have a big impact on the game and not just the 11k on the field, there is a lot of work off the field as well.”

The Windies reached 53-1 with Scotland all out for 160, but Evin Lewis’ dismissal from the penultimate ball of the powerplay was the start of a dramatic collapse that saw the 2012 and 2016 winners lose seven wickets for 26 runs in 45 deliveries.

Lewis’ wicket was the defining moment of the match as slow left-armer Mark Watt changed his pace and length brilliantly as the Windies were bowled out for 118 in 18.3 overs.

He finished with 3-12 from his four overs, while off-spinner Michael Leask took 2-15 and bowler Brad Wheal, who was part of the Hampshire team that won the T20 Blast this summer, took 2-32.

George Munsey’s unbeaten 66 from 53 balls took Scotland to 160-5 after the loss of the toss, with important cameos from Calum MacLeod (23 off 14) and Chris Greaves (16 off 11).

Scotland’s victory is all the more impressive as they have only played two T20s since last year’s World Cup.

“It’s a special win for us,” captain Richard Berrington told Sky Sports.

“A lot of work has been done in the last 12 months and we have taken a lot of faith in the performances of the last year

“We haven’t had as many T20s as we’d like, but we’ve had a lot of 50-over cricket and I’m happy we’ve been able to transfer that into this game.

“The bowlers were exceptional. The spinners have put in a lot of time for us. Mark Watt does very well in the first over. Michael Leask was excellent.

“I thought George Munsey and Michael Jones were brilliant, they gave us that platform and the West Indies pulled it off to get back into those middle orders.

“We had some good cameos towards the end, and we knew it would give us a competitive score. I thought our bowlers were exceptional in that second innings.”

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