The Scotland squad return to the United Arab Emirates in the new year to face Ireland and the UAE in a Tri-Series.
The tour will provide some valuable preparation after securing their place by finishing second in the ICC World Cricket League for the ICC World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe which will be held in March 2018.
Kyle Coetzer will again lead the side after a bumper year with the bat. Scotland’s captain scored the highest number of runs ever in 2017 by a Scotland player in a calendar year, and in fewer innings than the next seven best totals.
Michael Jones receives his first call-up to the national squad after a number of notable performances for Scotland ‘A’, scoring big hundreds for and against Durham 2XI in 2017. Tom Sole also features in the national squad for the first time after making excellent progress with his county Northamptonshire.
There will also be an opportunity for seamer Scott Cameron to add to his maiden Scotland cap following his debut against the MCC at Lord’s in the summer of 2017.
The tour will consist of two One Day International matches against Ireland (16th and 18th January) and UAE (21st and 23rd January) at the quality facilities of the ICC Academy in Dubai.
Scotland coach Grant Bradburn said on the announcement, “We are very grateful to have the opportunity to play this Tri Series in Dubai against two quality sides as an excellent build up to the WC Qualifier in Zimbabwe in March 2018. Michael Jones, Tom Sole and Scott Cameron will add freshness and youth to the squad. It is excellent to be including new young players who all have outstanding skills to offer and have earned their opportunities through consistent performances in 2017.
During this coming series, we will be developing our ability to win, with a variety of line ups, where we will challenge some players to take on subtly different roles.
In Associate cricket we get very few opportunities to provide players game time in a variety of positions – simply because every series has so much on it and we get precious little match time leading in. This Dubai series is no different in terms of importance, but we have full confidence in our players to take on different roles.
We must continually improve and give players the exposure to grow. Our sole intent is to qualify for the CWC 19 and to do that we must develop depth and allow players to show their vast range of abilities at international level. This series in Dubai will give us that chance to learn more about our players and refine our plans to qualify for CWC 19.”
On the players currently missing out on the tour, Bradburn added, “Dylan Budge (New Zealand), Chris Sole and Brad Wheal (Barbados with Hampshire) all have valuable playing opportunities and will not be included for Dubai, but remain part of the wider WCQ squad. Con de Lange also remains in the wider squad to be selected for Zimbabwe.”
Tri-Series Squad: Kyle Coetzer (captain), Richie Berrington, Scott Cameron, Matthew Cross, Alasdair Evans, Michael Jones, Michael Leask, Calum MacLeod, George Munsey, Safyaan Sharif, Tom Sole, Craig Wallace, Mark Watt, Stuart Whittingham.
Scotland’s UAE Tour Fixtures:
16 January 2018 – ODI, Scotland v Ireland, ICC Academy
18 January 2018 – ODI, Scotland v Ireland, ICC Academy
21 January 2018 – ODI, UAE v Scotland, ICC Academy
23 January 2018 – ODI, UAE v Scotland, ICC Academy
Steelbacks TV sat down with Tom Sole as he prepares to join Scotland for the upcoming CWC 2019 qualifiers.