Esha Oza to become next UAE captain with Chaya Mughal set for retirement

All-rounder will play her farewell T20 international against Namibia on Tuesday before passing on armband

Chaya Mughal's last game for the UAE will be against Namibia on Tuesday after she announced her retirement. Vincent Phoon
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Esha Oza will be the next captain of the UAE women’s side when Chaya Mughal retires from international cricket on Tuesday.

Mughal has helped to bring about a rapid advance in the female game in this country in five years with the national team.

As the captain of the side she oversaw a record-equalling run of success in T20 international cricket, as the UAE marched up the rankings.

For the majority of her career she led the side while holding down a job as a teacher.

Her expertise from the classroom was just as valuable as her skills on the field, seeing as the side she led included a large number of highly talented schoolgirl cricketers.

Her talents may be missing from the field from now on, but they will not be lost entirely to UAE cricket.

She is hanging up her bowling spikes to focus fully on her role as the Emirates Cricket Board’s women’s development officer.

She will play a farewell game in the first match of a six T20 international series games against Namibia in Dubai on Tuesday.

Oza, the ICC women’s associate cricketer of the year for 2022, will then take over the captaincy for the remainder of the series.

“I have completed an incredible cricketing journey with the UAE team,” said Mughal, 37.

“We have come a long way since I began my career with the UAE in 2018. The team has grown in stature tremendously and our success is exemplified in our dominant performances in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier in Malaysia.

“I would like to express my gratitude to all my current and former teammates, coaches, and support staff as well as ECB for their trust and backing throughout my career.

“I extend my best wishes to Esha and the team for their upcoming series against Namibia.

“Moving forward, my foremost goal now is to identify and nurture the next generation of women stars from across UAE.”

Mubashshir Usmani, the ECB’s general secretary, called Mughal an “inspiration” to cricketers in the UAE.

“Chaya is undoubtedly one of the most renowned UAE cricketers and her contribution to the game both as a player and leader would be cherished for a long time,” Usmani said.

“Chaya has inspired a new generation of UAE women cricketers. We have full trust and confidence in her abilities and wish her the very best as we continue to develop and grow women’s cricket across UAE, an area where her expertise is hugely beneficial to us.”

Updated: September 23, 2023, 10:22 AM