Losing to Scotland always hurts so I'm sure it will have been no different for the lads last week when the lost the two t20 games at Bready.

Over the last couple of years we have seen the Scots rejuvenate themselves and become a team that knows how to win again.

They've got some good players and although they were missing Matt Machan they still had the likes of Kyle Coetzer and Matthew Cross.

It looked from afar that both games were won in the first 6 overs of each innings so we now then that we can work on that for the qualifiers starting next month.

There looked to be some promising signs for our lads as well with Tyron Kane and Davi Rankin both making their debuts. That in itself is something they will both be hugely proud of.

Tyrone looked like he had a good couple of days so he will take that confidence in to next month.

To many of our supporters, qualifying tournaments on the surface will look like a walk in the park and while if we play good cricket, we should win the tournament...especially in our own conditions, we must be wary of the fact the other teams will be out there looking to gun us down.

In associate cricket we are the team that everyone wants to be and that means that when they play us they will be up for it perhaps that extra little bit. We must respect them for what they are now and for most, that is a Nation that is serious about cricket.

We alway need to be aware of what a gruelling schedule a qualifying tournament can produce and make sure we are fit and ready for that challenge.

In that respect we are lucky that with a professional system in place, we should be fitter and more able than perhaps other countries that still work on an amateur basis. It is a great feather in the cap of Irish Cricket that the ICC have deemed them capable of hosting this event and hopefully the Irish public will come out in its numbers to support us.

I remember the last time the qualifiers were held in Belfast when we hadto defend around 60 in 10 overs against Bermuda otherwise we may well have been out of the tournament. There could only have been about 300 people in Stormont that day but I still remember the reception we got as we came on to the pitch.

We ended up winning the game and going on to share the trophy with Holland after the final was washed out. We saw first hand at the recent World Cup how the public get behind us and it was nothing short of first class.

These games may not have the same profile as the ones in February and March but without winning these, we don't get to play in them and support is everything.

Across the water in London we had a poor result last week, losing to Glamorgan by 7 wickets at Guildford. It was particularly disappointing because they sit behind us only one place with a game in hand. Graham Wagg scored a double century in their first innings taking them from 100-6 to a 30 run lead after we scored 400 and that's pretty much were the game was won and lost.

I've been pretty pleased with my own form over the last few weeks. It's always nice to score tough runs when the team really needs them and I felt like that's what I've done over the last fortnight.

We have just had a great result, winning inside three days at Derby... Most importantly it gives us a well earned extra days rest.

On Friday night we travel to Glamorgan (yes them again) to play a t20 only to return on Friday to start a championship game against Gloucestershire the following day at the Oval...absolutely ridiculous scheduling!!