Will we see the SAS in Scottish Cricket this Summer?
It sounds like an unusual plot line, but the SAS might soon have a mighty impact on Scottish cricket.
Only, in this case, the letters stand for Sreesanth And Sharif and the club who are set to benefit from the new strike pairing are Glenrothes.
The Fifers are celebrating their 60th anniversary this year and have already laid down a declaration of intent by confirming they have recruited Scottish pace bowler, Safyaan Sharif, from Falkland.
It’s an astute signing, given the fact the international bowler is still just 25, has demonstrated growing prowess with the bat, and has the ability to rip through the best of opposition line-ups.
So too, it may not be long until he is joined by the flamboyant former Indian Test star Sreesanth who is keen to return to competitive action and will learn later this month whether he is being granted permission by the Indian authorities.
Sreesanth speaking to the media in Doha last month commented, “As far as I know, the ban for me applies only to BCCI tournaments. If BCCI gives me the permission to travel, then I can probably play in the Scotland League. I’m currently in talks with Scotland’s Glenrothes CC. I can play for them in the 2017 season, provided Scotland board gets BCCI nod.”
A two-time World Cup winner — he was also a part of the triumphant team in the 2011 tournament co-hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh — Sreesanth, who played 27 Tests, 53 One-Day Internationals and 10 T20s, will always be remembered as one of the most idiosyncratic characters to have played the game.
Click here to listen to our Interview with Sreeesanth Podcast recorded early last year.
If he does come to Fife, it would be a remarkable coup for the New Town organisation. And Sharif is already relishing the prospect.
He told CricIndex: “The Glenrothes set-up looks really good. They have a lot of youngsters coming through to the First team and some have represented Scotland at under-17 and under-19 level.
“They are a local club for me, just 15 minutes drive from my house, which is ideal. And also, if we get Sreesanth, it would be a great advantage for the club and for myself, because he is a right arm fast bowler and I can learn a few things from him and he can share his experiences with the club.”
In the immediate future, Sharif is part of the Scotland squad which will be battling with the other Associates in the Middle East at the Desert T20 competition. And he is determined to get the New Year off to a positive start. As he said: “The Dubai tour is important for us, so that we can send a statement to the ICC and the other Associates.
“If we do the basics and show our skills, I am sure we will get far in the Desert T20.”
It sounds like a winning combination.
As indeed does SAS!