Dubai, Nov 23 (IANS/CMC) Bermuda coach Arnold Manders said his cricketers need to step up their game if they are to advance to the ICC World Twenty20 qualifier playoffs being staged here.
Sixteen countries are competing in the qualifiers with the top six advancing to next year’s World T20 to be held in Bangladesh.
Thursday’s heavy defeat against Kenya — their third in a row after opening with victories over Scotland and Denmark — left Bermuda’s hopes of reaching the playoffs hanging by a thread ahead of weekend games against Nepal and Papua New Guinea.
Bermuda are seventh on four points in Group B but could force their way into the top five and reach the playoffs if they win both weekend games. Nepal are fourth on six points and PNG sixth on five. PNG’s hopes were hit by only picking one point in a rained-out game against bottom team Denmark Friday.
“All is not lost. If we win our next two matches, I think that will get us through. But losing to Kenya has made life difficult because we must win both of our final two group games now. If we could have beaten Kenya, I think we would have been fine, so that’s disappointing,” Manders said.
Reflecting on the Kenya defeat, the former Bermuda captain admitted that his team’s bowling and batting had not been up to par.
“The bowlers just didn’t hit the right areas and this is a whole different level to what they are used to. We didn’t bowl well enough during the powerplay when there really isn’t much margin for error. I think we gave up 60 runs during the powerplay. The medium pacers need to stop leaking runs early,” Manders added.
“We also need to improve our batting and must start scoring more runs. We’ve only scored one 50 in this tournament and that’s not really enough. We haven’t had any consistency in our batting and that probably puts a little bit of pressure on our bowlers.
“It’s disappointing. Scotland was a good result and then we beat Denmark but we’ve come up against good opposition after that. We are still not applying ourselves.”
Friday was a rest day for Bermuda and Manders said he would focus on restoring team confidence.
“They have got all the video footage, all the coaching points. They just need to apply it on the field. We have to win both and hope other teams lose which is what is happening — this group is wide open. There’s still hope but the bowlers have got to step it up and get out there and get the two wins.”
ss/bgPublished 23 Nov 2013, 12:00 IST