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Burger hopes World Cup feat is platform for more Scottish success

The Scotland cricket coach praised his players for their T20 World Cup achievement.

Burger hopes World Cup feat is platform for more Scottish success Cricket Scotland

Scotland coach Shane Burger says his squad still have goals to achieve but that everyone involved can be proud of their Cricket World Cup success.

A win over Oman in the T20 series saw Scotland qualify for the Super 12s where they will face some of the best teams on the planet.

The victory takes Scotland past the opening round of any International Cricket Council global event for the first time and Burger and his players will face New Zealand, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Group A runner up at the next stage.

“It feels really good,” Burger told STV. “There’s no better feeling than waking up this morning and realising that you’ve done something special and achieved a lot of the goals that we set for ourselves a while ago.

“The big thing is that this group knows that we’re not finished yet. We still have other goals that we have to achieve and this is just another step in the journey.

“I’m incredibly proud and incredibly happy. We’re going to take a day or two just to enjoy this and let it settle in with the boys.”

Despite being on the verge of making history, the coach said his players had been calm and shown focus as they faced Oman, where he felt they had put in a “complete performance” to seal qualification for the next stage. The win brought wild celebrations for all involved but also messages of congratulations from around the globe.

“My phone hasn’t stopped, it’s just ridiculous,” Burger said. “It’s an absolute privilege to be receiving messages from all over the word, from friends, family and supporters. I haven’t even got round to replying even to my own mother yet, which is something I probably need to do pretty soon.

“But actually getting messages from other teams and coaches is really heartwarming.”

The coach now faces the challenge of taking the team to the next level but he believes Scotland can face anyone without fear and are capable of catching the nation’s imagination once again.

“One of the goals I had coming over here was to make sure that we do inspire this nation and get them behind this fantastic cricket team that we have,” he said. “Many wouldn’t realise the feats that have been achieved previously but now we’ve got an opportunity to go on and do even better things.

“We have the platform, we have to respect it and remain humble and just keep inspiring the nation and getting more fans behind us.”

In the meantime, Cricket Scotland have an opportunity to grow the sport and chief executive Gus Mackay said this week had put the team on the map.

“It’s been quite an unbelievable week,” he said. “It’s moments like this when you work in sport that you really treasure.

“It’s amazing. We’re all taking it in and taking deep breaths as we go along. It’s an amazing journey.”

Now, Mackay feels there’s a moment to seize as cricket has leapt into the headlines.

He said:” A week ago there’s probably people who didn’t know that we were in a World Cup. They certainly do now.

“They didn’t know who some of the players do. They do now.

“It’s really raised the profile and I think what it’s going to achieve for us, and we need to capitalise on this moment, it’ll engage more people to follow the sport: boys, girls, men and women.

“It’s a great opportunity and it’s really put cricket in Scotland high on people’s agendas.”