Scotland defeated Bangladesh, Oman and Papua New Guinea in the first round and reached the Super 12s stage for the first time in their history, but couldn’t manage a single win in the second round of the 2021 T20 World Cup. They suffered their fifth successive defeat against Pakistan on Sunday (November 7) and skipper Kyle Coetzer wants his team to learn as much as possible ahead of the next edition, which will be played in Australia next year.
Coetzer said he is “extremely proud” of the way his team played in the ongoing tournament and wants Cricket Scotland to be “bold and brave” and find different ways to develop this team. "I'm extremely proud of how we've played and what we've achieved. We've got an excellent group and the guys are willing to learn and are trying to learn as fast as they can. Being exposed to what we have been in the Super 12s is only going to make us stronger and make us realise some of the skills and efforts you have to put in to achieve it at this level," said Coetzer.
"Reaching the Super 12s was our immediate goal and we achieved that, but we need to learn as much as we possibly can because 12 months down the line, we've got another World Cup to go to. It's going to be in different conditions so we'll have to factor that in, but because we've experienced it, we now know what to expect.
"When we go home we have to be bold and brave, and make sure we push our whole organisation forward. We have to find a way to improve our 'A' team structures when we're at home and find a way to keep developing this team, this squad of players that we have. We've got a long journey to go on but it's an exciting one to be part of: who wouldn't want to be part of Cricket Scotland right now?"
Coetzer feels there are some areas in which Scotland will have to do better if they want to compete with top teams. The 37-year-old wants his team to be more aggressive in the powerplay and also be better against high-quality spin bowling. He also wants his bowling unit to be a "little bit braver".
"Not that we have never played here before - we have done quite a few times - but what we've realised is the importance of the powerplay. We haven't really nailed that yet with the bat. (We've learned) the importance of how to play high-quality spin bowling. I believe we're a very strong side and very capable of playing spin bowling but it's a different story when you come and play at Sharjah and some of these grounds out here, and the style in which the mystery spin is coming down. We have to go away and see how we can develop that.
"We need to be a little bit braver as a bowling unit, perhaps. We've noticed a number of the teams out here have actually been double-bluffing quite a lot, setting fields and bowling balls that don't necessarily match up - but what they do do is they nail and execute those deliveries extremely well."
Scotland have been in the Middle East since late September. They even played World Cricket League fixtures against Oman and Papua New Guinea before the showpiece event, but Coetzer said he doesn’t want to use “fatigue” as an excuse.
"I wouldn't like to say that. We've prepared well. We think we're playing pretty decent cricket but the standard has certainly gone up when we hit the Super 12 stage and we had to find a way to adapt as quickly as we possibly could. Playing cricket out in the UAE isn't easy and we've learnt a lot from this occasion.
"We have been away from home for a little while but I wouldn't like to use that as an excuse. We've got to look at ourselves and see where we can continue to improve. We've shown signs of that: look at Richie Berrington's innings against a fine Pakistan attack. I thought he played outstandingly well and it may well go under the radar because we lost but it was a great knock.
"Hopefully from the seven weeks or so we've managed to inspire as many associate nations as we possibly can and hopefully inspire young cricketers back in Scotland. That's why we're here: we get to try and give it all for our country and be able to inspire as many people as we possibly can. That's how I started many years ago, watching Scotland play in the World Cup and hopefully there'll be a few more boys and girls coming through that will want to play cricket for their country."