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McMullen: Scots ‘not far’ from beating world’s best

Brandon McMullen suggests Scotland are “not far away from beating the best in the world” after hitting 60 in their narrow T20 World Cup defeat by Australia.

With England beating Namibia earlier, the Scots needed a victory to progress from their group to the Super 8s.

But Australia surpassed their target of 181 with just two balls to spare.

“Obviously, it’s hugely disappointing as a group,” McMullen said. “We’ve played some real good cricket in this tournament so far and the belief was super high going into today’s game.

“We’ve shown that we can compete at this high level against the best players in the world and again, yet again, we showed it tonight that, no, we’re not far away from beating the best in the world.”

Conspiracy theories were abound pre-match because an Australia defeat would eliminate one of their biggest rivals for the title.

“I think Australia is a world-class cricket team – they have been for many, many years,” McMullen said. “They’re always going to put out a good fight – they’re never just going to walk over and let you win, so I’m glad that it was a close game today.”

McMullen’s 60 from 34 balls helped the Scots post the highest total made against Australia by an associate team to give themselves a realistic chance of a shock victory.

“We had a good start in the first half of the game and the first innings and we just couldn’t quite back it up in the bowling,” he said. “I thought we bowled well at times.

“The first half was especially really good. And then you had a few big overs in that back end, which let us down. So, unfortunately, it wasn’t our day today, but I learned a lot from the game and the experience was incredible.

“We’ve really enjoyed ourselves at the World Cup and we’ll be back next time stronger.”

Team-mate Michael Jones, who described McMullan as “an absolute superstar, he’s an amazing player” for his outstanding performance, was proud of how they gave “probably the best T20 team in the world a real run for their money”.

The batter added that “we can’t wait to take them on again” when the Australians visit Scotland for a three-match T20 series in September.

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