sport

MacLeod boosts Scotland

Calum MacLeod hit a stunning 175 against Canada to send Scotland into the Super Six stage of the ICC World Cup qualifying tournament.

MacLeod's total, from 141 balls, is the highest ever scored in a World Cup qualifier and sealed a 170-run victory that saw Scotland finish top of Group A in New Zealand.

Joint-head coach Craig Wright told the Cricket Scotland website: "Calum's innings was absolutely top-drawer, and he is showing a great hunger for runs and consistency with his performance.

"We realise as a team that consistency is key.

"We will enjoy this result but won't get carried away as there is still a long way to go before we achieve our objective."

MacLeod shared a second-wicket partnership of 144 with Matt Machan (68) and then put on 118 for the fourth with Freddie Coleman (40) as the Scots posted 341 for nine in their 50 overs.

Hamza Tariq posted 71 in reply for Canada but they never looked like getting anywhere near the Scottish total as they were dismissed for 171.

Captain Preston Mommsen, who was standing in for wrist injury-victim Kyle Coetzer, added: "There have been some awesome individual performances, none more so than Calum's innings today.

"It was an incredible knock and ultimately it set up the game of us, helping us achieve our highest ever ODI score.

"The attitude amongst the squad has been brilliant throughout the trip, and the boys are buzzing for the next round of the competition."

Canada put Scotland in to bat in Christchurch and that decision looked a good one as Matty Cross fell for just four in the fifth over, caught by Raza-ur-Rehman.

That brought Machan to the crease and he supplied good support for MacLeod as the pair occupied the middle for 23 overs before the former fell to Harvir Baidwan's catch.

Mommsen then scored just six but MacLeod and Coleman guided Scotland past 300 before the latter was caught by Ruvindu Gunasekera off the bowling of Jeremy Gordon and MacLeod then fell next ball.

The 25-year-old had struck 14 fours and five sixes before Raza-ur-Rehman and Khurram Chohan combined to dismiss him.

Scotland then lost four cheap wickets in the last five overs as Chohan finished with five for 68 but the damage was already done.

Rob Taylor removed Ruvinda Gunasekera as he edged the ball behind to Cross without a run scored.

Iain Wardlaw then saw off Zeeshan Siddiqi (seven) and Nitish Kumar (26) in three balls to leave Canada 38 for three and when Jimmy Hansra (two) fell to Taylor in the next over, the North Americans were in big trouble.

Hamza Tariq's half-century helped Canada continue to occupy the crease but no-one could stay with him for long and he was the last man to fall, caught behind off Safyaan Sharif.

In the other Group A game, the United Arab Emirates beat Hong Kong by 22 runs with both sides through to the Super Six.