DUBAI // A weekend which started with the outside possibility of a trip to Lahore to play in the Pakistan Super League final ended in the disappointment of another defeat with the UAE for Mohammed Naveed.
The UAE fast bowler is 12th in the ICC rankings for Twenty20 bowlers, and is well known to the Pakistan players from series played here as well as last year’s Asia Cup in Bangladesh.
He held informal discussions with Sarfraz Ahmed, the Quetta Gladiators captain, about bolstering their ranks for the final, after their overseas contingent pulled out of the trip to Lahore.
Naveed was keen on playing the final, but was deemed ineligible as his name had not appeared on the official reserve player draft.
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Coincidentally, Naveed will be playing alongside some of Quetta’s opponents in Sunday night’s final when he plays in the Hong Kong T20 Blitz next week.
Mohammed Hafeez and Darren Sammy, the Peshawar Zalmi players, have also been recruited to play in the Hung Hom JD Jaguars team in that competition.
Naveed signed off ahead of Tuesday’s flight to Hong Kong with another tough day’s work for the UAE, as they lost the second one-day international against Ireland in Dubai by eight wickets.
The UAE have failed to bat the full 50 overs in their past eight ODIs, stretching back to when they faced Pakistan in the World Cup two years ago, which discounts the two successful run-chases against Scotland and Hong Kong earlier this year. They have now lost 12 of their past 14 ODIs.
The two matches were a dispiriting exercise ahead of important Intercontinental Cup and World Cricket League matches against Papua New Guinea next month.
However, Naveed is optimistic the national team can turn around their form ahead of those three matches.
“It was difficult [against Ireland], we played with a lot of tension, but we can correct our mistakes and get better,” Naveed said.
“We have a good new coach [Dougie Brown]. We can definitely improve for the matches against PNG because we are a real team.”
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