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June 24, 2008
Scotland are preparing to face the twin challenge of New Zealand and Ireland in the one-day tri-series at Mannofield in Aberdeen next week, the first time the ground has hosted ODIs.
The last time New Zealand played in Scotland was during the 1999 World Cup, when captain Daniel Vettori was 12th man. New Zealand and Ireland last met in the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean, when New Zealand won by 129 runs.
Ireland and Scotland are old and frequent foes, and competition between them is always tense. After Ireland's famous victories in the World Cup against Pakistan and Bangladesh they are ranked 10th in the world, while Scotland are three places behind. They will be keen to use this match in Aberdeen to set the record straight.
However, Scotland will be without Kyle Coetzer, who will remain with Durham to continue his county season after the two parties came to an agreement. Navdeep Poonia, who plays for Warwickshire, is available for the ODIs.
"Scotland has yet to defeat a Test-playing country, and this is therefore another opportunity for us to break new ground against New Zealand," said coach Peter Steindl. "We have several players who are in fine form at the present time, so we hope to spring a surprise or two on both our visiting teams."
Roddy Smith, chief executive of Cricket Scotland, added: "It will be a real challenge for our squad taking on nations ranked fourth and tenth in the world - and I am sure the Aberdeen public will come out in force to support the team."
Tickets for the ODIs are available for purchase in advance from the Cricket Scotland website and office, the Aberdeenshire clubhouse, or on the match days at the entrance to the Mannofield ground. For the Scotland-New Zealand match the entry price is £25 (concessions £15), and for the other two games £15 (concessions £10).
Squad Ryan Watson (capt), Richie Berrington, Dewald Nel, Craig Wright John Blain, Gordon Goudie, Gavin Hamilton, Majid Haq, Neil McCallum, Navdeep Poonia, Glenn Rogers, Qasim Sheikh, Colin Smith (wk), Fraser Watts
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