All-Emirati UAE team aim to retain Gulf Cup

Four-nation tournament aimed at promoting cricket among Arab nationals

The all-Emirati UAE team, led by Mohammed Tauqir, fancy their chances of making it two in a row when they compete in the third Gulf Cup cricket tournament at the Sharjah stadium from June 14 to 16.
The UAE team upstaged Oman, the tournament favourites, last year, winning the tense final in the second Super Over after their match ended in a tie. They will have to conjure another piece of magic if they aim for encore in the competition which also features national teams of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
With experienced Tauqir at the helm, the UAE team believes it has the right combination and talent to see off any challenge in the event which is being played under the auspices of the Emirates Cricket Board.
“Playing in home conditions is certainly an advantage, but we will have to be at our best since all teams in the competition are capable of springing up a surprise on their good day,” said Tauqir, who has represented the UAE at various international tournaments.
“We know Oman will be out to turn the tide this time around, but we can always draw inspiration from our last year’s performance when the team held their nerve to see off their challenge,” he added.
“It’s all history now and we will have to start afresh. The good thing is that the boys have the confidence in their abilities. We need to translate that into a good performance on the field. Hopefully, all things will fall into place,” said Tauqir.
The tournament, hosted by the Sharjah Cricket Council, is aimed at promoting the game of cricket among Arab nationals by providing a competitive environment.
“Cricket is steadily catching up with Arab nationals through the Gulf states and all they need is more exposure to hone their competitive edge. The Gulf Cup is one such opportunity for them to s howcase their skills. We look forward to seeing good matches,” said Mazhar Khan, Administrator of the Emirates Cricket Board.
Match schedule (first match starting at 6.00pm):
June 14 – Oman v Kuwait and Saudi Arabia v UAE
June 15 – Kuwait v UAE and Saudi Arabia v Oman
June 16 -  Kuwait v Saudi Arabia and Oman v UAE
UAE squad: Mohammed Tauqir (Captain), Alawi Al Braik (Vice Captain), Salman Farooq, Qais Farooq,  Adil Farooq, Fahad Al Hashmie, Saeed Al Safaar, Sultan Al Balushi (wicketkeeper), Marwan Khamis, Saif Al Balushi,  Abdulrahim Galadari,  Abdulla Saif, Altaf Mohammed, Fadhil Al Habtoor,  Hamdan Aziz and Hamad Al Muhairi.
Manager – Abdulrhman Al Suwaidi

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