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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 April 2019

UAE aim to keep up winning momentum when they take on Lancashire in Dubai

Dougie Brown's side face county team in two-day practice match on the back of a run of wins across formats

UAE beat Surrey by 66 runs at the ICC Academy in Dubai on Wednesday. They face more English county opposition on Sunday when they take on Lancashire in a 50-over match. Chris Whiteoak / The National
UAE beat Surrey by 66 runs at the ICC Academy in Dubai on Wednesday. They face more English county opposition on Sunday when they take on Lancashire in a 50-over match. Chris Whiteoak / The National

UAE will return to 50-over action against English county opposition on Sunday with spirits soaring after a tournament win in the shortest format of the game.

The national team face Lancashire in a limited-overs fixture at the ICC Academy in Dubai. It is the latest assignment in a busy schedule that has already seen them play 50-over, Twenty20 and T10 fixtures against a variety of opposition in the space of a week.

They had been due to complete the full set of formats by playing Lancashire in a four-day match at Dubai Sports City.

However, the county side have opted to switch the encounter to an overs game, with an internal two-day practice game to follow, on the account of the number of injuries they are carrying.

The most gruesome of these was the facial injury suffered by Matt Parkinson, the leg-spinner, during the T10 festival day on Thursday.

Parkinson bore the brunt of a ferocious straight drive while bowling in the opening game of the tournament against Surrey.

He was treated by medical staff from both sides on the pitch, as well as the attendant ambulance staff, before being led away to hospital.

Fortunately, he was well enough later in the day to tweet a photograph of his injury, joking that it was his “first and last game of T10”.

Other than Parkinson’s injury, the fixture was chiefly memorable for Will Jacks, the Surrey youngster, scoring a 25-ball century, included in which was six sixes in an over.

Even though the day will be remembered for the historic first century in a T10 match, it was the UAE that went on to win the four-team competition.

They opened with a win against the Abu Dhabi T10 select XI, then lost to Surrey in the next match, before beating the same opposition in the evening final.

“The confidence that was given to us by the management, especially the coach, made us feel that we could clinch the tournament,” Mohammed Naveed, the UAE captain, said.

“We had a plan before each match, and luckily it went all according to it. Most of our players know the format very well now and that surely made the difference.

“It was our amazing spin attack, with Sultan Ahmed, Imran Haider and Rohan Mustafa, along with Shaiman Anwar that proved vital for us.

“Shaiman is a senior player and he takes the responsibility at every stage.”

UAE batsman Chirag Suri scored a century in the win over Surrey. Chris Whiteoak / The National
UAE batsman Chirag Suri scored a century in the win over Surrey. Chris Whiteoak / The National

The trophy was the culmination of an uplifting week for the UAE, which started with a Twenty20 international win over the USA, and included a fine win over Surrey, the English county champions, in a 50-over match.

“We take it one game a time, and obviously the win against the English sides was a great boost to the team,” Naveed said.

“But we have to move on to make the UAE prouder than this. It is a complete team game.”

Dougie Brown, the UAE coach, said his side were confident they could win the 10-over tournament, despite the calibre of opposition.

“We need to be realistic, the Surrey players haven’t had much in the way of match-practice in this early stage of their season,” Brown said.

“We need to be sensible about where we are at, but that said, Surrey are full of very good players.

“We went into the game and weren’t phased by any part of it, which is very pleasing, especially with a view to what is coming up.”

Updated: March 23, 2019 06:37 PM

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