ICC Intercontinental Cup November 15, 2004

Three-day games helping UAE - Tauqir

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Mohammad Tauqir, the captain of the UAE team, has expressed the hope that playing more three-day first-class matches will help his team gain further experience in playing the longer version of the game. UAE have qualified for the semi-finals of the ICC Intercontinental Cup, and will take on Canada in Sharjah from November 17 to 19.

According to an ICC media release, Tauqir highlighted the benefits of playing more three-day games: "As a batsman you learn to stay at the wicket, you learn to leave the ball and play at short-pitched deliveries and as a bowler you learn to bowl a good line and length with longer spells. So, as a batsman you learn to build an innings and as a bowler you learn to attack and contain depending on the situation. Overall I think you get the opportunity to improve your cricketing skills with this longer version of the game."

UAE has so far only played one-day internationals, and Tauqir admitted that playing three-day games was a completely new experience: "In one-day cricket you get one innings break and you restart, whereas in three-day cricket you have to play session by session. You should be a specialised batsman or bowler to do the job. I also believe in three-day games sometimes you have to bat defensively and sometimes you have to be aggressive according to situation."

Tauqir expressed his satisfaction with the performance of the team in the Intercontinental Cup: "So far we have played two games and we have witnessed three centuries from our batsmen and a couple of ten-wicket hauls from the bowlers as well as some excellent catches and fielding." UAE drew against Nepal and beat Malaysia by 124 runs in their two matches in the competition so far. Arshad Ali and Fahad Usman got hundreds against Nepal, while Ali Asad took nine wickets in an innings against them, and Tauqir took ten in the match against Malaysia.

Kenya play Scotland in the other semi-finals in Abu Dhabi, while the final will be held at Sharjah from November 21 to 23.

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