Ajman: The UAE women’s cricket team tested their cricketing skills and strength against boys in the Gulf Cup hosted by Young Talent Cricket Academy and came out with a creditable show. Playing against Under-15 boys at the Eden Gardens ground in Ajman, UAE women won one match, lost another and even fought hard to ‘tie’ a match last week.
The UAE women won the hearts of everyone by taking up the challenge and recording a stunning victory over Crick 22 team. Though they lost to Victoria Cricket Academy the women fought hard to hold Push Cricket Academy to a tie. UAE opening batswoman Esha Oza cracked 48 runs and took two wickets to defeat Crick 22 and bag the Player of the Match award. In the tied match, it was UAE’s women’s team all-rounder Chaya Mughal who played a pivotal role in the tie match against Push Academy. Chaya hit 21 runs and took three wickets.
Speaking to Gulf News, Chaitrali Kalgutkar, the coach and manager of the UAE women’s team, said: “It was a great experience to play competitive cricket against boys. We felt that playing against boys will be an advantage to develop the game and to gain more confidence. This exposure was excellent and the girls are now looking forward to play in many such tournaments. It was nice that two our players even won the player of the match awards. There are a lot of young girls coming forward to play cricket and this kind of competition and exposure can help them to groom their game and go on to play well at the elite level.”
The five national team players that played in the tournament are UAE women’s team captain Humaira Tasneem, Kavisha Kumari, Subha Srinivasan, Chaya and Esha. The tied match tested the fighting spirt in the women. Batting first, UAE posted 113 for five in the allotted 20 overs. Subha topscored with 48 runs while Chaya chipped with a valuable 21 runs. UAE women bowlers started off well with pacer Chaya and off-spinner Chamani Seneviratne bowling a few tight overs.
The turning point match came in the last four overs when Chaya and Chamani put the brakes on Push Academy batsmen taking two wickets each. The match also witnessed superb fielding from the women especially UAE captain Humaira. Chaya won the player of the match award for her all-round show.
“Our girls are eager to play in more such matches as it will equip them for the tough competition in international cricket,” added Chaitrali. UAE women’s team had recently qualified for the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup qualifiers by emerging as runners up in the ICC Women’s T20 Asian qualifiers held in Thailand.