Khan urges UAE to finish tour on a high

Denzil Pinto 17:57 19/09/2014
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Convincing display: UAE beat Papua New Guinea by seven wickets on Thursday.

Captain Khurram Khan has urged his UAE team-mates to remain focused for the final two matches of their High Performance Programme (HPP).

On Thursday, the UAE comprehensively beat Papua New Guinea by seven wickets at Gardens Oval in Darwin, to register their second straight win of the HPP tour.

After Nasir Aziz (3-35) restricted Papua New Guinea to 267, half-centuries from Saqab Ali (73) and Swapnil Patil (72) helped the UAE chase the target with 10 balls remaining.

It was a strong batting performance by the UAE with all five batsmen reaching double figures under the watchful eye of recently-appointed batting coach Mudassar Khan.

Now the UAE face a double-header against Aussie outfit Redbacks – on Tuesday and Thursday – to complete their fixtures Down Under and Khan wants to finish on a high.

"The bowlers and the batsmen just have to stay calm and continue what they are doing," said the 43-year-old, who didn't bat in Thursday's victory after suffering a minor wrist injury when bowling.

"We have to learn and improve in each game as well as learning from our mistakes as we missed some run-out chances against Papua New Guinea. For sure it's going to be a much tougher game but we just need to keep sticking to our basics."

Having lost their opening two matches of the tour against Warriors in Perth, Khan had called for his batsmen to take more “responsibility” at the crease.

And he is happy that his team-mates appear to have taken his advice on board.

"It's very pleasing to have two wins in a row and now the batsmen have shown they are taking more responsibility,” he said.

“Amjad Ali looks like he's in a good form and it was good to see Swapnil Patil score the runs. It's very important to see batsmen scoring runs especially on different conditions. 

"We are now getting used to the conditions and to win the match in a convincing manner was very good as the total was hard to chase but the batsmen showed real maturity to maintain the run rate which saw us cross over the line."

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