Humaira Tasneem believes Bangladesh’s shock T20 Asia Cup win will inspire the UAE that they can cause upsets of their own in next month’s Women’s World T20 Qualifier.
The UAE have been drawn alongside the newly-crowned Asian champions, hosts Netherlands and Papua New Guinea in the eight-team tournament with the top two qualifying November’s showpiece in the West Indies.
With Scotland, Ireland, Thailand and Uganda also featuring, the UAE face a tough task of advancing but they will be encouraged by Bangladesh’s performance in Malaysia last week.
The Tigers defied the odds to beat six-time defending champions India by three wickets in a thrilling last-ball finish to win their maiden title. It was the second victory over India after beating them in the group stage.
UAE captain Tasneem was following the tournament closely from Dubai and insists Bangladesh’s win proves that anything is possible when it comes to match day.
“We are all keeping an eye on how Bangladesh fared in the Asia Cup and it’s really good they won the tournament,” said the spinner.
“T20 is a game that on the day, you just don’t know what’s going to happen. So I think we can beat the likes of India and Australia if we go into the match with our plans and strategies. Every player has to give their ultimate best on that day. Bangladesh had a really good tournament over there and the UAE can have one too. Nobody has seen us play so we are ready to surprise everyone.”
The UAE have regularly tested themselves against Asian opposition with the Netherlands tournament their second ICC competition following their pre-qualifiers in November. It will be the first time they will face European nations and Tasneem believes the opposition needing to do their homework on her team could work in their favour.
“Teams will only have seen highlights on the internet about us and we have some new players that have come in,” she said. “We have experience and youngsters who will all put in a collective effort and give their best in the tournament.”
The UAE have been stepping up their preparations for the qualifiers which runs from July 7 to 14,
In preparation for the qualifiers, which runs from July 7 to 14, the UAE competed in Ramadan tournaments as well as a touring Sri Lanka team, which was organised by the Emirates Cricket Board.
Tasneem said that was a good opportunity to experiment with the squad as well as getting vital match practice.
“We needed these kind of matches before the tournament,” she said. “Other nations like Australia would have training camps but we don’t have that.
“The last couple of weeks have been really good and we used all the batters and bowlers and gave them a try so they can get some match practice ahead of the tournament. We can do as much practice in the nets but whatever we have learnt can only come through matches that we play.”
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