|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Fantasy||Mobile|
February 6, 2007
However, that doesn't mean Kenya and Scotland won't slug it out with all they have and there were no signs of any letup from the hosts in intensity following a gruelling training session marshalled by their coach, Roger Harper.
"We're as well prepared as we can be, given that we have played two back-to-back games and have just one day off before the final," he said at the impressive Aga Khan sports club, Kenya's principle training ground during this event, on the eve of the World Cricket League final. "However we feel from a physical perspective, I'm sure Scotland will be feeling the same."
The intensity of the training session was only matched by the fierce heat of the sun, scorching the outfield even at 10am this morning. The players looked fit and energetic - and they will need to be against Scotland, arguably the fittest of the six Associates. Does Harper have any specific tactics to contain Scotland's rollicking batting?
"Yes," he confirmed, with a smirk forming. He eventually elaborated that Kenya's tactics were "to play as well as we can play. It's not rocket science. We just need to play as well as we can play, in every department.
"It's an important day. It's a final of a tournament and an opportunity to show how well we can play. We're looking forward to it."
But as Kenya have shown throughout this event, they are capable of special, unlikely victories when all seems lost. It was clear from the closing ceremony last night, too, that they are exceptionally well motivated - aided, perhaps, by their entry into September's Twenty20 World Championships and the not-to-be-sniffed-at quarter of a million dollars.
"It was so important for us to qualify," Harper said. "The money means a lot, for the development of the game, but it's about having something to target for. And we need that.
"We're a happy unit [at the moment] but I guess you get that when you're playing well. It's a chicken and egg situation. You play well when you're happy and when the team spirit is good. We've worked hard, the team are gelling and it's really coming together now."
Harper chooses his words carefully. As the team piled their bags into the military-grey coach, there was a quiet, calm confidence - and a mixture of nervous anticipation - emanating from his troops. They are all too aware of the threat Scotland pose, but also aware that the main job has been done.
ESPNcricinfo picks five players for whom this IPL is of bigger significance
The Plays of the day from the match between Kolkata and Mumbai, in Abu Dhabi
The Plays of the day from the match between Chennai and Punjab in Abu Dhabi