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Page last updated at 13:23 GMT, Tuesday, 5 April 2011 14:23 UK

World Cup 2015 stymie upsets Scotland

Scotland were not at this year's World Cup
Scotland played in the 1999 and 2007 World Cups

Scotland are hoping for a U-turn from the International Cricket Council on making the 2015 World Cup a closed shop for 10 invited teams.

"This has some legs to run yet," Cricket Scotland chief executive Roddy Smith told BBC Radio Scotland.

"I'm sure the 95 countries ranked below the top 10 will be getting together to talk about what can be done.

"Can we influence the 10 full members to reconsider? It's a long shot but we have to try."

On Monday, the ICC confirmed its decision to cut team numbers for the World Cup from 14 to 10 starting with the 2015 tournament in Australia and New Zealand.

Only full ICC members - India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, England, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, West Indies, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe - will compete.

For the 2019 event, the 10 teams will be decided by qualification.

"We're not arguing that it shouldn't be a 10-team World Cup," added Smith. "Our biggest concern is that there has to be some sort of qualification event."

Scotland were at the 1999 and 2007 tournaments, while Ireland, Kenya, Canada and the Netherlands were the associate nations at this year's competition, won by India on home soil.

"Behind the scenes there are reasons to do with the commercial value and TV rights of the competition," said Smith of the decision to do away with qualifying for 2015.

Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and even the West Indies are not a million miles ahead of the leading second tier countries

Roddy Smith
Cricket Scotland chief executive

"But the main reason is to protect Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, who are aren't too much better than the likes of Ireland, Scotland, Afghanistan or Kenya etc.

"If you look at the last World Cup, Ireland obviously did very well.

"And there were certain games between full members that were very one-sided. England lost a game by 10 wickets.

"No one would argue that the top countries like Australia and India are far better than the associate nations.

"But the bottom full members, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and even the West Indies are not a million miles ahead of the leading second tier countries."

The ICC say they are catering for smaller nations by expanding the T20 World Cup to 16 teams.

"That's great but it's only one of the three formats of the game and for most associate nations it's not the main one," was Smith's response.

"We want to be tested at 50-over cricket."

Scotland will get a chance to show what they can do in the 50-over game, with Sri Lanka visiting in the summer.

The Scots and Irish will take on the World Cup runners-up in a 11-13 July mini-series at the Grange in Edinburgh.

"We're really excited about having Sri Lanka here," explained Smith. "They will be a great draw. Hopefully, we'll have England in 2012 and the Australians in the following year."

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see also
Ireland fight World Cup exclusion
05 Apr 11 |  Ireland
2015 World Cup is cut to 10 teams
04 Apr 11 |  Cricket
India power to World Cup triumph
02 Apr 11 |  Cricket
Irish and Scots to play Sri Lanka
14 Mar 11 |  Cricket

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