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Parry looking forward to Emirates T20 challenge

Parry looking forward to Emirates T20 challenge

Stephen Parry insists Lancashire must be on guard tomorrow against an ever-improving UAE national side in the Emirates Airline T20 tournament in Dubai.

The Red Rose left-arm spinner was a wicket-taker in today’s warm-up win against the Fly Emirates XI at the Sevens venue, where the Lightning will return to face the ICC Associates.

The UAE have just returned from an encouraging Asia Cup T20 campaign in Bangladesh, where they beat Afghanistan, Oman and Hong Kong.

They also took on India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, but lost.

Coached by former Pakistan Aaqib Javed, a 1992 World Cup winner, the UAE beat England Lions in a 50-over match in January, a game in which Parry played.

“The UAE are a good side,” insisted the left-arm spinner.

“They beat the Lions, so they will provide us with a good test. If we lose to the UAE, in the past I’d be saying ‘we shouldn’t be losing to them’. But I’ve seen what they’ve got this winter.

“They’re an improving side with some good spinners and some good players. That’s what you want in pre-season, a tough test.”

Parry continued: “It’s important we win, but it’s not everything. We just need to try and pick up the tempo where we left last year.

“We were a bit slow at the start, so maybe that’s something we can try and rectify. We are aware of it, and this might help us get ready a bit more.

“I think it was just us coming together as a side a bit later than we’d like and getting our tempo right.

“We weren’t right with the bat and good with the ball, and visa versa. It’s just about getting all of it working together.”

The winners of the 10am semi-final (6am UK) will play either Yorkshire or the MCC, captained by Ian Bell, in the evening final.

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