Dubai, Nepal is set to host seven cricket teams from Bahrain, Hong Kong, Kuwait, Malaysia, Oman, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier Final. The competition, taking place from 30 October to 6 November 2023, will determine which two teams advance to the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 in the West Indies and the USA.
According to a news release by the International Cricket Council, the participating teams will compete over the course of seven days, aiming to secure one of the two coveted spots in the World Cup, which will feature a total of 20 teams. With each team confident in their potential to move to the main stage, a highly competitive event is anticipated.
Aminul Islam, ICC Regional Development Manager – Asia, remarked on the rapid growth of cricket in Asia, particularly among high-performance teams. He expressed his enthusiasm for the upcoming event and the promise of it capturing the essence of the sport’s spirit and camaraderie.
Echoing Islam’s sentiment, Chatur Bahadur Chand, CEO of the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN), conveyed the association’s excitement and gratitude towards the ICC for entrusting Nepal with the hosting responsibilities. He also underscored the significance of this event in Nepal’s home cricket culture.
Captains from the participating teams shared their thoughts and ambitions:
Bahrain’s Captain Umer Imtiaz described their journey to the qualifiers as challenging but expressed immense pride and excitement. For Bahrain, securing a spot in the World Cup would be a monumental achievement, symbolizing the progress they’ve made in cricket.
Mohamed Aslam Mohamed Nawfer, Kuwait’s captain, emphasized their determination to qualify for the World Cup and acknowledged the significant changes and training the team has undergone in preparation.
Nizakat Mohammad Khan, Hong Kong’s captain, stressed the competition’s anticipated intensity, noting the recent Tri Series in Nepal as an invaluable preparation.
Ahmed Faiz Mohammad Noor, captain of Malaysia, highlighted the significance of the World Cup for Malaysian cricket, viewing it as a chance to represent the nation on the global stage.
Rohit Kumar Puadel, Nepal’s captain, mentioned the high expectations and their goal to qualify, emphasizing their dedication and determination.
Zeeshan Maqsood, Oman’s captain, expressed confidence in the team’s preparation and their desire to secure a berth in the T20 World Cup 2024.
Singapore’s captain, Aritra Dutta, discussed the challenges they faced on their journey to the qualifiers but emphasized the team’s focus on training and squad building.
UAE’s captain, Muhammad Waseem, expressed excitement for the opportunity and confidence in the team’s preparation and capability.
The article then lists the participating squad members for Bahrain, Hong Kong, Kuwait, and Malaysia. (The listed members are truncated due to length constraints).