World Cricket League, 2006-07 December 29, 2006

Harper expects close contest

Cricinfo staff

Kenya's coach Roger Harper says none of the other Associate countries taking part in next month's World Cricket League first division tournament will be taken lightly as the team prepares for the World Cup.

Harper expects the tournament, staged over a week in Nairobi, to be a closely fought contest between the six teams - Bermuda, Canada, Netherlands, Ireland, Scotland and Kenya. "It's difficult to underrate any of the teams," said Harper, "They have all qualified for the World Cup. They are all pretty good."

Kenya will start as favourites to clinch one of the final spots, on February 7, but have had plenty of problems over the past year. Meanwhile, Scotland and Ireland are coming from their off-season, while Canada, Netherlands and Bermuda have played recent Intercontinental Cup cricket as well as a tri-series in South Africa.

Kenya's squad of 30 resumed training for the World Cricket League earlier this week and the final squad of 15 is expected to be named at the weekend. Kenya's World Cup group also includes England, New Zealand and Canada.