MATT Machan is determined to ensure that his winter exploits with Scotland help make 2014 the year he breaks through at first-class level, before then returning Down Under to shine at the World Cup.
Machan made his four-day debut back in 2010 but last summer was the first time he had featured more than once over a season in the LV= County Championship for Sussex.
The 23-year-old left-hander, who qualifies for Scotland through his Glasgow-born mother, played six first-class innings for Sussex last term, hitting a century against Somerset and averaging 41.80. He also turned out for Scotland against Australia A before travelling to New Zealand at the turn of the year for the final qualifying tournament for the 2015 World Cup.
Machan scored 260 runs as Scotland won six out of seven matches to reach the final and secure a place at the main competition before beating UAE to win the tournament outright.
He then returned to Sussex to make 119 and 48 in a warm-up game against Loughborough MCCU and will not settle for anything but carrying his form into the new season and next year. "If I can settle into the four-day side that would be very nice," said Machan, who made his Scotland debut in March of last year.
"To get a hundred in the early season is always nice and hopefully it can hold me in good stead for the rest of the season and especially the next month or so. I've been lucky enough to play a lot with Scotland this winter so it doesn't really feel like I've stopped over the past 12 months.
"Last year I played against teams such as Australia and Pakistan. So it gives you a taste of what the top international guys can do. I think this has kicked both my four-day and one-day games on too."
Machan is one of Scotland's key players in the shorter forms of the games - averaging 69.00 from six T20s and 35.63 from 11 ODI innings. However, he admits his four-day game needs to improve if he is to cement his place at Sussex, who are not short of players pushing their own international agendas.
"The 2015 World Cup is obviously massive for everyone involved. Hopefully I can have a good season with Sussex and put some really strong performances in before building up to that," added Machan.
"I'm a big believer that you are your biggest coach, so I know what I want to get out of my game and the people I have spoken to have guided me in the right direction."
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