Action from a match between the UAE and Hong Kong at the ICC Cricket Academy in Dubai.
Mohammad Abdullah, Staff Reporter
UAE cricket team coach Robin Singh is confident of making it to the 2023 Cricket World Cup. The UAE, who are Associate Members of the ICC, have already played two 50-over World Cups in 1996 and 2015.
The thirteenth edition of the showpiece event will be held in India in 2023.
“I am confident we will qualify for the 2023 World Cup. We have the potential to make it for the showpiece event.
“Still there is a lot of time and we have started working in that direction. Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) is trying to put a system in place to make a strong squad for the future,” asserted Robin, who is the head coach of the UAE national cricket team and also renders his services as the director of cricket operations in the board.
Robin was speaking on the sidelines of the launch of D-20, a domestic 20-over tournament.
Robin joined as the head coach of the UAE in January. Soon after his appointment, coronavirus wreaked havoc and brought the sporting activities across the globe to a halt.
With the gradual resumption of the sports, the UAE became the first country to stage a successful 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
“We are working towards our goal slowly but stealthy. We organised D-10, a 10-over domestic tourney, in July-August. We have picked up quite a few names.
“Before coming to here, I was told there are not so many players in the UAE. But we could pick up more players than we thought even existed,” apprised Robin.
“The problem that we face here is that most of the players have passed their prime or they have fitness issues.
“Sometimes they lose their jobs and so on. We are trying to develop the game at the grass root level to make a strong team.
“We have been around on the scene for quite a long time but now we want to change our status from Associate Member to Full Members.
“For that it needs a lot of sacrifices from the players. There is nothing called mediocrity in cricket. To reach at the peak in any game, it needs a lot of hard work,” he added.
“There is no room for mediocrity in cricket if you want to make it big. This format exposes you the most. Whatever your skills are, if you cannot deliver at the right time, you will be exposed,” he concluded.
“Most of the guys are playing in the T20 format now- a-days while the real challenge is 50-over game. Going forward we will play as much as we can so that the guys get good experience,” informed the former Indian all-rounder.
Robin, who is also the batting coach of the Mumbai Indians, played down the talks that his team had any kind of advantage over others because of him being aware of the conditions in the UAE.
Mumbai Indians went on to win a record fifth IPL title, beating Delhi Capitals in the final.
“No, I don’t think it gave any extra edge to Mumbai Indians. Knowhow of he pitches and playing conditions is just a knowledge and it available to all. So I don’t think it made any difference at the end of the day,” concluded Robin.
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