|Event:||ICC Inter-Continental Cup 2004|
UAE captain: This is the first time we have played ‘declaration’ cricket From ICC Media Release
The United Arab Emirates captain Mohammad Tauqir explains that the unity of his team can help it win the three-day first-class tournament on home soil.
Q: How important is the ICC Intercontinental Cup to your team?
A: The ICC Intercontinental Cup is very important for the UAE team, it is the first time we have played three-day first-class cricket and we have done well so far. If we win the ICC Intercontinental Cup the morale and confidence of UAE team will be high in the forthcoming ICC Trophy 2005 in Ireland.
Q: Do you think playing three-day international cricket has benefited your team?
A: Of course it has, 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.
Q: How do the tactics for the three-day game differ from limited overs cricket?
A: It was totally a new experience for us playing in sessions. 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 specialized 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. You need to learn to identify the match situation and play accordingly and it needs mental toughness and physical fitness.
Q: Can you remember the first time you played 'declaration cricket' (i.e. not limited overs) where was it, how many wickets runs did you get?
A: The first time we played declaration cricket was in the ICC Intercontinental Cup match against Nepal in Sharjah in March 2004. We scored 293 for 9 declared in 82.1 overs.
Q: What were the highlights of the qualifying matches?
A: So far we have played two games and we have witnessed three centuries from our batsmen and a couple of 10-wicket hauls from the bowlers as well as some excellent catches and fielding. Q: What are your strengths as a team?
Q: We play as a one unit, we have self-belief and every one knows his role in the team.
Q: Have you made any special plans for any of the opposition?
A: We are ready to play against any team as one unit and play in the spirit of the game as it should be played. We shall work hard and do our best, our focus will be on performance and not on the outcome.
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