Scotland dig in to hammer blues
A Scotland XI (technically XIV) took on the Emirates Cricket Boards, UAE Blues at Abu Dhabi Sheikh Zayed Stadium earlier today in their second match of their tour of the UAE.
Scotland captain, Gordon Drummond won the toss and elected to bat first on a hot morning. Neil Carter sat out this match with Gordon Drummond, Iain Wardlaw and Safyann Sharif not batting.
Kyle Coetzer opened up with Calum MacLeod and successfully negotiated the first 5 overs, scoring 27/0.
However, Scotland found themselves on the back foot after Naveed produced an impressive spell of bowling, taking the first three wickets – MacLeod (LBW), Coetzer (caught behind) and Berrington (bowled).
Naveed was in the midst of a frenzied spell to plunge the visitors into deeper trouble, as Mommsen and Davey quickly departed, followed by David Murphy, who nicked a delivery to first slip to leave Scotland on 51/6.
Matt Machan and Moneeb Iqbal came together at the crease and started the Scottish recovery. The pair dug deep taking the score onto 126/6 after 35 overs. Machan showed great composure, reaching his 50, but was dismissed immediately afterwards.
Moneeb Iqbal too played his part in producing a decent total, before he was bowled for 43, as Scotland moved towards the end of their innings.
After Rob Taylor was victim of a smart stumping down the leg side for 0, Majid Haq and Gordon Goudie took the score to 186, until the innings came to a close when Goudie was run out after scoring 27 off 21 balls.
The wicket wasn’t as slow and low as the Sharjah pitch on Sunday and by all accounts slightly two paced, following a comprehensive pitch report by Simon Smith.
It was a lively start by the Scots as exciting prospect, Safyaan Sharif took two early wickets. The tails were up in the field and when Iain Wardlaw claimed another, forcing the batsman to fend off a quick delivery, only to be caught at square leg.
Wardlaw soon claimed his second wicket and another by Sharif took his third wicket, leaving the hosts teetering at 28/5 after 13 overs. Goudie replaced Wardlaw and made an instant impact taking a wicket in his first over, thanks to a smart catch by Kyle Coetzer at mid-off.
Drummond didn’t take long to get into the wickets, combining with Murphy, removed the bails standing up to the stumps, to claim the 7th UAE wicket in the 24th over.
Davey, who was playing his first tour match since arriving from Australia made sure Scotland were clinical at the end of the innings, taking 3 wickets for 0 runs to seal a well-earned victory, with 117 runs the margin of victory.
After the match coach Steindl commented, "It was a good win in challenging conditions. The partnership between Matt [Machan] and Moneeb [Iqbal], along with the late hitting by Gordon [Goudie] proved vital.
Our bowlers were a lot more clinical today and we kept to our plans well. There are still areas to improve on but it was a gutsy effort by the players today.”
Scotland will play their final 50 over fixture against the Blues on Thursday, before their first day/night T20 fixture on Sunday.