Mohammed Naveed will captain the UAE for the first time when they play Nepal in a limited-overs series in Dubai later this month.
The national team will play three one-day internationals and three Twenty20 internationals against their Asian rivals, at the ICC Academy, starting on January 25.
Fast-bowler Naveed will be taking over from the absent Rohan Mustafa, who is serving an eight-week ban for indiscipline.
The Emirates Cricket Board suspended Mustafa, as well as fellow senior players Ahmed Raza and Rameez Shahzad, for their outspoken criticism of the organisation of the Emerging Teams Asia Cup at the end of last year.
The three players took to social media to vent their frustrations at the Pakistan Cricket Board and Asian Cricket Council, after missing out on a semi-final place following a rain-affected match against Hong Kong.
Naveed was elevated to the position of Mustafa’s vice-captain late last year, and will now assume the top role.
It is the latest significant achievement in the career of a fast-bowler who started out as a tape-ball cricketer in Khorfakkan when he first arrived in the UAE from his native Pakistan.
“Being made captain of the country is a very proud moment for me,” said Naveed, who will be well aware of the merits of the opposition, having played at the Everest T20 in Kathmandu last month. “The first goal is a win against Nepal.”
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The ECB plan to air all the matches live online, with a fixed camera position at one end of the ground.
The broadcast will likely have a substantial following back in Nepal in particular, with Sandeep Lamichhane, the teenage leg-spin sensation currently in action in the Bangladesh Premier League, set to feature.
“We are delighted to welcome Nepal to the UAE for this ODI tri-series, and we expect a strong performance from our team under the captaincy of Naveed,” Waleed Bukhatir, the chief selector, said.
“We are also very excited to take the match to a wider, international audience through live streaming, and we anticipate this will be exceptionally well received across the region.”
Ahead of the squad announcement, the ECB had announced they have pledged the fines paid by Mustafa, Rameez and Raza to a charity in Pakistan.
“ECB has today confirmed that the PCB has received and accepted formal apologies made to them by the players,” the governing body said in a statement.
“As a gesture of good will, ECB will donate the fines imposed on the players to a Karachi-based charity.”
All matches to be played at ICC Academy in Dubai. Admission is free.
- January 25, 1st ODI, 9.30am start
- January 26, 2nd ODI, 9.30am start
- January 28, 3rd ODI, 9.30am start
- January 31, 1st T20I, 1pm start
- February 1, 2nd T20I, 1pm start
- February 3, 2nd T20I, 1pm start