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March 4, 2015

Mohammad Tauqir


Q. What was the idea behind deciding to field first?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: No, I think we thought probably the wicket had a little bit of moisture and it was overcast conditions, so we wanted to get them all out earlier and then chase the runs.

Q. I presume you're a bit disappointed with the fielding? I mean, had you held those catches early on, things could have been really different.
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: Yeah, I agree. I think the fielding was below mark today. I think we dropped a few catches. I think if we would have taken those catches the total would have been different. 340 was a very good total, but it was an overall decent effort from our side.

Q. Something about Shaiman Anwar who is now the highest run scorer in the World Cup after four matches. Another excellent effort from him.
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: Yeah, I think he's a brilliant batsman. He's a very, very confident individual on the team. I'm very, very happy for him. He's doing very well for himself and the team. He's such a confident individual that we call him Sir Viv in the dressing room. His nickname is Sir Viv. Even today I think he missed a hundred I think. If we would have stayed to the end, he would have scored 90 to 100 runs, but an excellent performance.

Q. First, the presence of Javed and how it's helped you, especially in the game today the connection with Pakistan over the years, did that help? And where does this take UAE after the World Cup is over? Do you think there is any interest in the Emirate population rooting for the team?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: Let me answer second question first. I think yes, I agree it's a dominant sports in UAE, but I believe our presence in the World Cup definitely would inspire many more Emirates to follow the game. I mean the kind of infrastructure and facilities we have, it's a growing -- it's growing amongst the Emirate population as well. And your first question about Aaqib and (Indiscernible), yes, definitely they are with the team. Aaqib is with the team almost two years. He is putting a lot of hard work in with the team. Because of his guidance and knowledge, we have qualified for three World Cups, and I believe we have done well during this tournament also.

Q. Can you tell me the World Cup so far, what's been the biggest learning that you feel your team has taken out of the tournament so far?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: I think see we had a couple of close games against Zimbabwe and Ireland. I think even today's game playing 50 over against Pakistan, it's a big positive for the team. Our effort is to do well against the test nations and put up a decent performance against these test nations. In batting we need to do the best and play all 50 overs and in bowling also, we need to restrict them. I think we should not concede 400-plus kind of runs. I mean, that's an achievement or that's the learning we want to do.

Q. Following up on the earlier question about support of cricket in Emirate. Emirate Airlines is sponsoring ICC and all the stuff, but I don't see that logo on you. Why wouldn't your national airline that supports cricket in other ways wouldn't support the national cricket team? Any thoughts on that?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: I think we already have a sponsor here, so that's not for me to comment on. That's for the authorities, that's not a relevant question for me. I'm not the right person to answer that.

Q. You seemed to shoot off start chasing today. What was the planning just to go after 50 and not realistically chase the target?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: I think 350 was a huge total. I mean in pursuit of 350 we didn't want to get out in 30 overs and make a mockery of ourselves, but the plan was to keep wickets in hand and build an inning, build a partnership. At the end of the inning in the last 10, 15 overs we need to attack or go for big hitting. So, unfortunately, again, there were a few early wickets and we need to slow down and build a partnership.

Q. Both the Scotland captain and Afghanistan captain have spoken the last few weeks about how they have nothing left to prove. The fact that they qualified for the World Cup is proof they belong here. Do you have similar views about the UAE?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: I would not agree that if you have qualified that you belong here. I think you need to put up a decent performance as well. I think our performance against India team was not up top the mark, but we discussed that against all the rest of the test nations we need to put up a good performance. I know we lost the match today, but it was a decent effort overall.

Q. Just looking ahead to your next couple of matches, especially the match against South Africa. I mean, that team has scored 400-plus runs in the last two outings. What are your realistic hopes from that match, and are you planning to make any changes to the team because the same 11 have played the last three matches? You told me before the tournament that you'd like to give as many players a chance as well. So what are the plans for the next matches?
MOHAMMAD TAUQIR: I think regarding changes, yes, definitely. Once we go back to the dressing room and discuss it, there will be a couple of changes. We may have a couple of changes. But it seems against South Africa the only way they cannot score 400 runs is win the toss and bat. The way they are going, they're scoring 400 runs against West Indies and yesterday as well. No, we, I think we need to bowl well. We need to bowl well, we need to feel well to restrict them. Now even considering 400 is not an embarrassing total, you know. So, yeah. We will be putting in a lot of effort and good performance against South Africa as well.
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