Shaun Maloney wishes Kyle Coetzer 'Good Luck'
From David Kelso Cricket Media
FA Cup hero Shaun Maloney yesterday sent a message of giant-killing hope to his old chum Kyle Coetzer after he was rubber-stamped as new Scotland cricket skipper.
And he urged Captain Kyle to be inspired by his own shock Wembley triumph with Wigan when the Scots go into battle against the superstars of Pakistan in Edinburgh on Friday.
The pair were in the same Scots age-group team which Maloney led to a historic first ever win against English opposition.
Maloney broke off preparations for Wigan's make-or-break Premiership showdown with Arsenal to declare: "Best of luck to Kyle and the boys.
"Self-belief is a huge element in any sport and if they can perform to their potential on the day then anything is possible."
Coetzer and Co take on the Test-ace tourists at the Grange in the first of two One Day Internationals.
And a win would be an upset on a par with Wigan's wonder show.
Spinner Majid Haq was also in the set-up with Maloney and he chuckled: "What I remember most is trying in vain to get the ball off Shaun during the six-a-side football games we had as part of the warm-up sessions.
"He was so much better than anyone else and it was obvious he would go places.
"I am a Rangers fan, but I tracked his career and wanted him to do well when he was with Celtic.
"Then at the weekend I was full of awe for the way he performed at Wembley and there is a definite comparison to be drawn with Scotland v Pakistan.
"I really fancy our chances of catching them cold. Apart from the fact the weather won't suit them, it is their first match after arriving in the UK.
"If eight or nine of us can fire, then of course we can win."
Scotland coach Pete Steindl added: "I was in charge of the Under-13s back in 1996 when Shaun, Kyle and Majid were in that squad.
"What I remember most about him was the high quality of his fielding and his mature leadership talents.
"They had a great season and became the first Scotland youth side to beat an English county.
"Shaun and his Wigan colleagues underlined one of the beauties of sport at any level in terms of how the underdogs can have their day.
"That result will certainly help to inspire us against Pakistan."
Steindl added: "Shaun was a great wee cricketer at that time when he was with Aberdeehshire.
"I am sure he would have gone on to play at a high level if he had not opted to go down the football road."