Cricket World Cup: Big stage suits Jersey, says coach

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DESPITE a shattering opening game defeat, Jersey Cricket’s head coach says his side ‘belongs’ on the big stage.

The Islanders were in cruise control for much of their Cricket World Cup Qualifier Play-off opener against Canada, but were left to rue a substandard last 20 overs, allowing their opponents to seize the initiative and ultimately the win.

‘The guys are obviously upset,’ said MacRae.

‘They did plenty enough well to get the win from the game, but these are the tough lessons that tournament cricket teaches.

‘But, ultimately the overriding feeling is that we know we are good enough to keep company with these teams.’

Jersey displayed a mentality and experience for much of the day that will stand them in good stead as the tournament progresses.

Electing to bowl first proved a good decision, as did taking pace off the ball, highlighted by two stellar spells from captain Chuggy Perchard and Ben Ward.

Despite the result, there was an air that Jersey knew they deserved to be sharing the stage with much larger nations.

‘If this squad has shown anything, it is an innate fight and togetherness to battle through whatever comes,’ said MacRae.

‘This is the highest level that we have experienced, but we are not out of place. The task becomes more difficult with an opening loss, but it is by no means insurmountable. We need to hold onto the good we did. Nick on Josh laid a great foundation, as did the whole team with the ball.

‘We would have taken 239 to chase on a flat wicket and that is the task we had.

‘This team have shown they can chase down big totals and we will work hard on tidying up our batting ahead of Namibia.

‘They are used to tournament cricket and the highs and lows that it brings.The initial disappointment won’t last long and will be soon replaced with hunger and desire to improve for the games ahead.’

Jersey are back in action on Thursday, to face hosts Namibia, who were comprehensively beaten by the United States of America in their opening fixture.

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