Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 22 September 2020

UAE captain Ahmed Raza thanks Dougie Brown for 'great journey' as focus turns to the future

Change in management at the national team sees former India player Robin Singh appointed director of cricket

Ahmed Raza, left, was elevated to UAE captain by Dougie Brown in the wake of the corruption scandal. Chris Whiteoak / The National
Ahmed Raza, left, was elevated to UAE captain by Dougie Brown in the wake of the corruption scandal. Chris Whiteoak / The National

Ahmed Raza, the UAE captain, paid tribute to the “brilliant” job Dougie Brown did in three years as UAE head coach, but says focus now must switch to the future under Robin Singh.

The former India all-rounder was appointed as the new director of cricket by the Emirates Cricket Board on Wednesday.

Brown’s dismissal after three years at the helm came as a shock to many, and Raza said UAE cricket had much to thank the deposed coach for.

“It has been a great journey, he has been with us for three years, and we have had some great results,” Raza said.

“We have beaten a Test-playing nation [Zimbabwe] playing ODIs, we have beaten a Test-playing nation [Ireland] playing T20s.

“With all the ups and downs we have had in the three years, I think he has been brilliant. Credit to him.”

Left-arm spinner Raza, who was made captain in the wake of the corruption scandal last November, said Brown’s successor is well-credentialled.

“The only way is to look forward, and to look forward to working with Robin Singh,” Raza said. “Looking at his credentials, he has so many titles under his belt.

“He has played for India, which is obviously not a small thing. With his knack for picking up talent, I’m sure that will work very much in our favour.”

Although Singh is set to start work with immediate effect, he is due to miss the first assignment of his tenure, when UAE tour United States.

The Cricket World Cup League Two triangular series with USA and Scotland in Florida clashes with the Indian Premier League. Singh is a coach of Mumbai Indians, the defending champions.

Singh has said he expects UAE cricket to profit from his link up with the IPL, as well as his other associations with franchise cricket around the world.

Raza said the idea that the new coach could open doors to franchise cricket for the UAE players is exciting, and could benefit the game in this country.

“I think he has been involved with Mumbai Indians ever since IPL started,” Raza said. “That is obviously beneficial for the players as well, whoever is eligible.

“He could actually work as a scout as well, and maybe pick a few of us to go to CPL as well, which would be a great experience, then we can come back and help UAE cricket.”

Updated: February 12, 2020 07:32 PM

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