IPL: DC keep playoff hopes alive with 8-wicket win against RR

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: A 144-run stand between Mitchell Marsh (89) and David Warner (52*) helped Delhi Capitals register an eight-wicket win against Rajasthan Royals here at DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai on Wednesday.

It was a memorable day for DC, who put on an all-round performance to keep their playoff hopes alive.
With this win, DC is currently at fifth position in the points table with 12 points. RR is at third position with 14 points.

Chasing 161, Delhi Capitals got off a poor start, losing the opener Srikar Bharat for a duck on the second ball of the innings after a Trent Boult delivery found the edge of his bat and landed in the hands of wicketkeeper Sanju Samson.

This brought Aussie all-rounder Mitchell Marsh to the field alongside his compatriot David Warner. Prasidh Krishna delivered a maiden second over and the next Boult over gave away only 4, leaving Delhi struggling at 5/1 in three overs.

Things started to pick up after the introduction of spin with Ravichandran Ashwin in the fourth over, who gave away 12 runs thanks to six from Marsh. That hit infused some life into the chase as the fourth, fifth and sixth over went for 11,12 and 10 runs respectively with Marsh and Warner stabilising the innings. Marsh took a more aggressive approach, while Warner anchored from the end.

At the end of the powerplay, DC stood at a sub-par 38/1, with Marsh (24*) and Warner (11*).

After the powerplay, Marsh kicked the chase into the next gear, smashing pacer Kuldeep Sen for two sixes and a total of 16 in his seventh over. This also brought up the fifty-run stand between the duo of Warner and Marsh, with the latter being a more dominant batter.

Both the batter continued to pile up runs further. By the time ten overs ended, DC had recovered from the early hiccups and stood at a solid 74/1, with Marsh (47*) and Warner (23*).

Soon, Marsh also brought up his half-century, his first of the season in 38 balls with a six off Chahal’s delivery in the 11th over.

The onslaught on the RR bowling attack did not stop in the second half of the innings either, with the duo going all out against Yuzvendra Chahal, Ashwin and Prasidh Krishna. A four by Warner off Sen’s third delivery in the 14th over brought the 100-run stand between him and Marsh in just 79 balls.

By the end of 15 overs, DC was at the commanding position in the match with 114/1 and Marsh (70*) and Warner (38*) stood at the crease with the equation down to 47 runs needed in the final five overs.

Marsh and Warner continued to make light work of the RR bowling attack, with the duo smashing 15 runs in the 16th over bowled by Ashwin.

In the 18th over of the game, Chahal finally got the wicket of Marsh, who went back for 89 off 67 balls after being caught by Sen at the short fine-leg.

This brought captain Rishabh Pant to the crease, who smashed two sixes in Chahal’s 18th over to take Delhi three runs closer to a win. Warner finally completed the formalities with a three of the first ball of the 19th over. It also brought his fifth half-century of the season.

Earlier, top knocks by Ravichandran Ashwin and Devdutt Padikkal provided Rajasthan Royals with a total of 160/6, at the end of the first innings against Delhi Capitals, here at Dr DY Patil Stadium on Wednesday.

Ashwin smashed 50 runs off 38 balls, while Padikkal scored 48 runs off 30 balls, and gave Rajasthan a strong hand in the first innings. For DC, Chetan Sakariya, Anrich Nortje and Mitchell Marsh bagged two wickets each.

Put to bat, Rajasthan had a rough start as their opening batter Jos Buttler fell prey to Chetan Sakariya after only scoring 7 runs. Ravichandran Ashwin was promoted to number three to join hands with opener Yashasvi Jaiswal to keep the scoreboard moving. The duo stitched a great partnership and took their team’s total beyond the 50-run mark in the 8th over of the innings.

In the 9th over Mitchell Marsh gave a big blow to RR as he dismissed Jaiswal for 19 runs. Jaiswal’s wicket invited Devdutt Padikkal to the crease and the latter smashed Mitchell Marsh for 8 runs. Ashwin brought up his maiden half-century in just 37 balls, while Padikkal gave a strong stand to him from the other end. They took Rajasthan’s score to 107/2 in 14 overs.

Mitchell Marsh was brought back into the attack and the pacer gave his team a big breakthrough as dismissed the well-set batter Ashwin for 50 runs. RR skipper Sanju Samson then joined Padikkal on the crease to set up a big score and keep their team’s scoreboard moving. Padikkal smashed the DC bowlers all around the ground. RR skipper could not stand longer on the ground and fell prey to Anrich Nortje after only scoring six runs.

Young batter Riyan Parag came to the crease to steady his team’s batting lineup. the duo of Parag and Padikkal smashed Nortje for 14 runs in a one over. In the 17th over of the innings, Chetan Sakariya was brought back into the bowling attack and he delivered an amazing spell of 7 runs with the wicket of Riyan Parag.

Rassie van der Dussen then joined Padikkal on the crease to remove some pressure from the team. In the 19th over well-set batter, Padikkal fell prey to Nortje after scoring 48 runs, leaving the team’s total at 146/6. The 20th over of the innings delivered by Shardul Thakur helped DC restrict Rajasthan to 160/6.

Brief Scores: Delhi Capitals 161/2 in 18.1 overs (Mitchell Marsh 89, David Warner 52*, Trent Boult 1/32) and Rajasthan Royals 160/6 in 20 overs (Ravichandran Ashwin 50, Devdutt Padikkal 48, Chetan Sakariya 2/23). (ANI)

Cricket South Africa withdraws charges against Mark Boucher

Johannesburg [South Africa]-  Cricket South Africa (CSA) on Tuesday announced that they have withdrawn charges of misconduct, including charges of racism against Proteas head coach Mark Boucher.

The nation’s cricket governing body further concluded that there is no basis to sustain any of the disciplinary charges, which include racism, against Mark Boucher, head coach of the Men’s cricket team. The Board of CSA has therefore formally and unreservedly withdrawn all of the charges.
“In December 2021, the CSA Board received the report from the independent Social Justice and Nation-Building (SJN) Ombudsman, Dumisa Ntsebeza SC. That report made adverse “tentative findings” regarding Boucher but because the Ombudsman stated that he was not in a position to make “definite findings” he recommended that further formal processes take place to achieve finality on these issues,” said the board in a statement.

In line with their fiduciary and legal obligations, the CSA Board resolved to institute formal proceedings as per the SJN Report’s recommendations, which would give all parties, including Boucher, a chance to respond to the allegations and fully state their case. CSA was advised by external lawyers that the appropriate formal process to follow in respect of Boucher was a formal disciplinary hearing in front of an independent Chairperson.

The charge sheet against Boucher ultimately included the tentative finding made by the SJN Ombudsman against Boucher, as well as issues arising from CSA’s own internal enquiry following the resignation of the Proteas assistant coach, Enoch Nkwe. Terry Motau SC, a well-respected senior counsel, was appointed as the Chairperson of the disciplinary enquiry. After consultation with Boucher’s legal team and considering the Proteas schedule, Motau SC determined that the disciplinary hearing would commence on May 16, 2022.

The CSA Board has now taken the decision to formally withdraw all of the disciplinary charges against Boucher. This includes the charges arising from the SJN report and the charges arising from the investigation following Nkwe’s resignation. CSA has made this decision taking into account the following considerations:

1. Paul Adams recently announced that he had withdrawn from testifying against Boucher during the disciplinary hearing. In doing so, Adams stated that his concerns articulated during the SJN process were about the overall “culture” in the Proteas team during the early 2000s, rather than being about any particular player.

2. During the SJN process, Boucher formally apologised to Adams. After the SJN process, Adams indicated to CSA’s lawyers that he accepts this apology.

3. Nkwe decided that he too did not wish to testify against Boucher during the disciplinary hearing. In doing so, Nkwe stated publicly that he did not intend to take sides regarding Boucher and that “whatever happens in that process, I hope the outcome will be the one that’s best for the game”.

4. CSA’s lawyers engaged with various other potential witnesses over the last month and concluded that none of the three charges were sustainable.

5. The very recent ruling by Hamilton Maenetje SC and Michael Bishop in the Graeme Smith arbitration fortified the conclusion that the charges against Boucher would be dismissed.

Having taken all of the above into account, as well as the advice of its external lawyers, CSA concluded that there was no basis to sustain any of the charges against Boucher. CSA has therefore withdrawn the charges and will contribute towards his legal costs.

Lawson Naidoo, Chair of the CSA Board, commented: “CSA has at all times been committed to dealing with the SJN issues in a manner that treats them with utmost seriousness but also ensures fairness, due process and finality. The decision to withdraw the charges brings about finality on these issues for CSA and Mark and allows the focus to return to the cricket field – where we trust that Mark and the Proteas will go from strength to strength.” (ANI)


IPL- I had nothing to lose, says MI’s Daniel Sams after win

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]- Daniel Sams, who defended 9 runs in the final over to script a stunning win for Mumbai Indians against Gujarat Titans, said he had nothing to lose when the odds were piled in the favours of batters.

Daniel Sams finished with brilliant figures of 3-0-18-0, including only conceding 3 runs in the final over to play a crucial role in MI’s thrilling triumph.
“We didn’t have the start that we wanted (to the tournament) but after those 8 losses we thought we have a mini IPL and we have nothing to lose,” said Daniel Sams in a post-match presentation.

“9 off 6 is one of those ones.. I just kind of look at it as I have nothing to lose here, probably the odds are in the batter’s favour, so I thought I will stick to my best ball and lucky enough I was able to keep it inside the wide line. Viewing it from the outside it will probably look like that (gutsy), but for me, I was just trying to stick to my best ball, the slower ball is something I go to and happy it paid off,” he added.

Sams said MI, who are virtually out of the playoffs race with two wins in 10 matches, now want to show the world what they are capable of and expressed that it feels great to get over the line.

“What a crazy game! Awesome to get over the line. It was one of those games which just kept going backwards and forwards. It was good viewing out in the field and I am sure it was good on TV,” said Sams.

Talking about the match, Two-wicket haul by Murugan Ashwin and top knocks from Rohit Sharma, Ishan Kishan, and Tim David helped Mumbai Indians score a 5-run win over Gujarat Titans at the Brabourne Stadium here on Friday.

The collective bowling effort from Mumbai Indians put the strong batting efforts of Shubman Gill and Wriddhiman Saha to vain as Gujarat could not capitalize on their opening partnership in the tight contest that was settled in the last over.

With 9 runs needed off 6 balls, Mumbai had their biggest breakthrough when Tewatia was run out on the third delivery of the 20th over, leaving the equation at 7 runs off 3 balls. Rashid Khan walked in and took a single to bring Miller to strike.

Daniel Sams then bowled two dot balls and provided a 5-run victory to Mumbai Indians, who also registered their second win of IPL 2022.(ANI)


You take Mumbai lightly at your own peril, says Gujarat Titans’ Vikram Solanki

By Vivek Prabhakar Singh

Mumbai (Maharashtra)[India]: Debutants Gujarat Titans have been on a rampage winning eight out of 10 IPL matches and are on top of the points table.
The Hardik Pandya-led side will now take on Mumbai Indians here at the Brabourne Stadium on Friday.

Rohit Sharma led Mumbai are languishing at the bottom of the points table having lost eight out of nine matches. But despite Mumbai’s poor run of form, Gujarat Titans are not taking them lightly.

“I would say that each and every one of those teams have the ability to beat any team on their day. Mumbai have a proud history if you think of the championships they have won. They are coming on the back of a win. They are a very competitive team. They have match winners and we will have to be at our best to give ourselves a chance of winning the game. You can’t take any team lightly and, for Mumbai, you can take them lightly at your own peril,” said Gujarat Titans’ Director of Cricket Vikram Solanki told ANI in an exclusive interview.

Gujarat Titans are close to booking their play-offs berth but they are not looking that far ahead and taking one match at a time.

“We are minded to make an assessment of each game. We perhaps wanted the best of each game. We are actually looking at the next game. We have a challenge ahead of us as far as Mumbai are concerned. We look to that game and we don’t look too far ahead. We must give a good account of ourselves. They are coming on the back of a win as well and any team at their best is sort of going to be a challenge in this sort of tournament. It is the very nature of the IPL. So, we must look at the next game and the game after that once we get past that. Yes we must try to finish as high as possible,” Solanki said.

Gujarat Titans faced a rare defeat in their previous match against Punjab Kings and much to the surprise Hardik Pandya won the toss and elected to bat first and Punjab chased down a 144-run target in just 16 overs.

“I would not describe it as an experiment. All credit to Punjab to get going as far as our innings are concerned. We certainly could have done things differently, we could have done better in terms of setting that total. So, sort of acknowledge that and Punjab managed their run chase very well,” said Vikram Solanki.

The five-time Mumbai team will play for pride against Gujarat Titans and Hardik Pandya will be leading his side against his previous franchise to inch closer to the play-off berth. (ANI)


IPL: Sunil Gavaskar, Ravi Shastri laud LSG skipper KL Rahul

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: Cricketing greats Sunil Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri have hailed Lucknow Super Giants captain KL Rahul after the opener’s solid performance in the ongoing IPL 2022.

KL Rahul has been scoring runs for fun in the ongoing IPL 2022 and the explosive right-handed batter is second after Rajasthan Royals’ opener Jos Buttler in the Orange Cap standings.
Former India captain and former India head coach Ravi Shastri claimed that the added responsibility of leading the side is bringing the best out of Rahul and either he or Buttler will end up winning the Orange Cap by the end of the IPL 2022.

Shastri said: “He’s got a solid all-round game, the technique is good he’s got all the shots, great temperament, and good presence of mind. With the responsibility of leading a new franchise is getting the best out of him.”

“You asked me at the start of the season, Orange Cap, I said KL Rahul because the openers have the best chance. So, it will be between him and (Jos) Buttler. If you are an opening batsman who’s firing then your franchise is going to do well in the TATA IPL because those are not the players at the back who come and do the damage. If you get an opener who’s firing then it’s half the job done already,” he added.

Former India captain and legendary opener Sunil Gavaskar also lauded Rahul for the way he paced his innings against Mumbai Indians when the Karnataka cricketer slammed a sensational century.

Gavaskar said, “It is fabulous to see the way he’s paced his innings (against Mumbai Indians). How he increased his tempo, how he went from one gear to second gear to third gear and towards the end (of the innings) he was into the fifth gear was fabulous.”

In a desperate lunge for their opening win of the tournament, one of the most successful teams in its antiquity, Mumbai Indians will be taking the arena with newcomers Lucknow Super Giants on Sunday who have so far shown pretty decent form despite a defeat against the Royal Challengers Bangalore in their last game. (ANI)


IPL: Buttler’s 116 helps RR beat DC by 15 runs to go on top

Mumbai (Maharashtra)[India]: Jos Buttler’s 116-run knock helped and Prasidh Krishna’s three-wicket haul helped Rajasthan Royals beat Delhi Capitals by 15 runs in a high-scoring match at the Wankhede Stadium here on Friday. With this win, the inaugural champions go to the top of the points table with five wins in seven matches.

Chasing a mammoth 223-run target David Warner and Prithvi Shaw gave Delhi capitals a flying start but the 43-run partnership was broken by pacer Prasidh Krishna who dismissed the dangerous Warner for 28 off 14 balls, caught behind by wicket-keeper Sanju Samson in the fifth over.
In the next over, Ravichandran Ashwin was introduced into the attack and the experienced off-spinner dismissed Sarfaraz Khan in his very first ball to leave Delhi in a spot of bother at 48/2 in 5.1 overs.

Captain Rishabh Pant joined Shaw at the other end and the duo scored runs at a brisk pace. The 51-run partnership was broken by Ashwin who took his second wicket of the match dismissing Shaw who got out scoring 37 from 27 balls as Delhi lost their third wicket for 99.

Lalit Yadav then joined captain Pant and the duo tried to keep pace with the required net run rate. Prasidh Krishna struck for the second time dismissing dangerous Pant for 44 off 24 balls. In the next over Yuzvendra Chahal cleaned up Axar Patel for 1 as DC lost half of their side for 127 in 13 overs.

Lalit Yadav and Shardul Thakur then struck a partnership to take the team’s total beyond the 150-run mark but the 30-run partnership was broken as Thakur was run-out and Delhi lost its sixth wicket for 157.

Lalit Yadav and Rovman Powell kept Delhi in the game but Prasidh Krishna struck for the third time dismissing the dangerous-looking Yadav for 24-ball 37, caught behind by keeper Samson as Delhi lost its seventh wicket for 187.

With 36 runs needed in the last six balls for Delhi Capitals, Rovman Powell hit six of the first ball of the over to left-arm pacer Obed McCoy. In the second ball, Powell hit a six again. In the third ball, he again hit a full toss ball for a maximum and that full toss according to Delhi Capitals captain Rishabh Pant and team management was a no-ball.

But the on-field umpire did not give a no-ball and even refused to consult the third umpire hence Pant threatened to forfeit the match and asked both Powell and Kuldeep Yadav to come out of the field. Assistant coach Praveen Amre entered the field to request umpires to go to the third umpire but the on-field umpires did not budge.

All this also broke Powell’s momentum as he failed to connect the next ball. McCoy dismissed Powell in the last ball of the match for 36 runs off 15 balls as the Royals won the match by 15 runs. With this win, Rajasthan jumped to the number one spot in the points table with five wins in seven matches.

Earlier in the day being put in to bat Rajasthan Royals team got off to a great start as openers Jos Buttler and Devdutt Padikkal played a bit cautiously and ensured that there was no damage done by Delhi Capital bowlers as the inaugural champions scored 44 runs in the first six overs of Powerplay.

In the seventh, over of the innings, the Buttler-Padikkal duo took the team’s total beyond the 50-run mark. After that Buttler pressed the accelerator and started hitting boundaries and sixes to notch up his half-century in just 36 balls.

In the 11th over, the Buttler-Padikkal duo struck a century partnership as Rajasthan Royals looked set for a massive total. Padikkal too went on to score his half-century scoring it in just 31-balls.

Rajasthan reached the 150-run mark in just 14.3 overs. The 155-run opening partnership was finally broken as left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed dismissed Padikkal leg-before for 54 off 35 balls.

Buttler went on to score his century in 57 balls, his third of the season, becoming only the second batter in the history of IPL to score three centuries in one season after Virat Kohli who scored four tons in the 2016 season.

Captain Sanju Samson walked in to bat – his 100th match for Rajasthan Royals – and he also went on to notch up over 5000 runs in T20s. Buttler-Samson took their team’s total beyond the 200-run mark in 18.4 overs. Mustafizur Rahman finally dismissed Buttler for 116 hitting nine fours and nine sixes as Rajasthan lost their second wicket of the match for 202.

Some lusty hitting by captain Sanju Samson helped his team notch up 222/2 in 20 overs. Samson scored an unbeaten 46 off 19 balls hitting five fours and three sixes.

Brief scores: Rajasthan Royals 222/2 in 20 overs (Jos Buttler 116, Devdutt Padikkal 54; Mustafizur Rahman 1/43, Khaleel Ahmed 1/47) vs Delhi Capitals 207/8 in 20 overs (Rishabh Pant 44, Lalit Yadav 37, Prithvi Shaw 37; Prasidh Krishna 3/22, Ravichandran Ashwin 2/32). (ANI)


IPL 2022: Pushpa fever grips RR’s Obed McCoy, enacts Allu Arjun’s ‘jhukega nahi’

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: Rajasthan Royals pacer Obed McCoy on Monday came into the limelight after he did the signature step of Telugu actor Allu Arjun’s movie, Pushpa, to celebrate with maiden Indian Premier League (IPL) wicket.

McCoy achieved his first wicket in the clash against Kolkata Knight Riders on Monday after the West Indies based pacer dismissed wicketkeeper-batter Sheldon Jackon in the 20th over at the Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai.
The pacer celebrated his wicket by doing the famous ‘jhukega nahi’ step from the movie Pushpa and caught all the attention of the audience.

This was not the first time that any cricketer imitated the famous hook step. Earlier, India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja also celebrated his wicket in the same manner in a T20I match against Sri Lanka.

Coming to Monday’s match, Jos Buttler’s 103-run knock, his second of the season, and Yuzvendra Chahal’s five-wicket haul which also included a hat-trick powered Rajasthan Royals to a thrilling seven-run win against Kolkata Knight Riders here at the Brabourne Stadium.

Ravichandran Ashwin took only one wicket but he got the prized scalp of dangerous Andre Russell leg before wicket for a golden duck. Obed McCoy bowled the final over of the match with KKR needing 11 runs with two wickets in hand but the left-arm pacer dismissed Sheldon Jackson and Umesh Yadav to guide Rajasthan to the fourth win of the season.

The match was a cliff-hanger where the pendulum tilted from one team to another as Kolkata Knight Riders were sailing through at one stage reaching the triple-figure mark in just 8.3 overs with Shreyas Iyer and Aaron Finch batting at the crease. But wickets from Chahal, Ashwin and Prasidh Krishna brought Sanju Samson led Rajasthan Royals back in the game.

This is Rajasthan Royals’ fourth win of the season in six matches taking them to the second spot in the points table. They will now take on Delhi Capitals in their next match on Friday in Pune. (ANI)

IPL 2022: We have been brilliant with ball in all three games, says LSG captain KL Rahul.

The Lucknow Super Giants Team went on to score 169/7 in 20 overs despite tottering at 27 for three at one stage and ultimately went on to win the match by 12 runs against Sunrisers Hyderabad here at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai.
“What’s pleasing is that we’ve found a way to stay in the game and give ourselves a good chance of winning. We did that again. Not ideal to lose three wickets early, but we need to give ourselves a little time since we bat deep and we have power at the death. That’s something we need to learn as a batting group – how to do play risk-free cricket while looking for fours. But with the ball we’ve been brilliant in all three games.” said LSG captain KL Rahul in the post-match presentation ceremony. After being in deep trouble at 27 for three Lucknow Super Giants desperately needed a partnership and captain KL Rahul along with Deepak Hooda stitched a partnership of 87 runs to help their team reach a fighting total. KL Rahul top-scored for his side scoring 68 off 50 balls while Hooda scored 33-ball 51.

IPL 2022, SRH vs LSG Highlights: KL Rahul, Avesh Khan Heroics Help Lucknow Super Giants Register 12-Run Win | Cricket News
“I’ve been playing with Hooda for the last 3-4 seasons, he doesn’t come out of the nets. Don’t really need to do so many nets when you’re batting so well, but he never comes out of the nets. He had to wait for his chance, he’s using that, and now is becoming someone you can rely on, in the middle order, ” said KL Rahul.
Lucknow captain KL Rahul is not worried about the top-order collapse and failure of his opening batting partner Quinton de Kock as he backs his team’s depth in the batting.

“We don’t chat so much in the middle. As opening batsmen, you give yourselves a couple of balls and if the wicket is good then both openers have to go. We have that extra batter with Jason coming in, so the plan is to put pressure on the opposition. That’s the body language we want to carry. To go out there and hit boundaries and sixes, but choose smart shots. If we lost wickets early, we need to quickly assess the situation and see what the target should be. Quinton and Lewis wanted to put pressure on Washington, but it didn’t come off, ” explained KL Rahul.
Lucknow Super Giants under the leadership of KL Rahul have won two consecutive matches after starting their campaign with a defeat against Gujarat Titans and now they will lock horns against Delhi Capitals on Thursday.

Martin Guptill shares heartfelt tribute to Ross Taylor

Hamilton [New Zealand]: New Zealand opening batter Martin Guptill shared a heartfelt to teammate Ross Taylor, who played his last international game on Monday.

Ross Taylor played his farewell international match for New Zealand against the Netherlands in the third match of the three-match ODI series here at Seddon Park.
“This is it. This is the last time we saw him walk out of the New Zealand team. It’ll be even more emotional when we wake up tomorrow morning and Ross is no longer going to be there. It will be tough, but we will have a good night tonight celebrating the Netherlands vs New Zealand series,” said Martin Guptill in a statement.

“Rosco (Ross Taylor) is an absolute legend and all of us are going to miss him around the group. He has been phenomenal and absolutely lovely and hopefully, we can catch up over the coming years,” he added.

With 8,607 runs in 236 ODIs, 7,683 runs in 112 Tests and 1,909 runs in 102 T20Is, Taylor had a successful international career as a cricketer.

It was not the happiest of endings as Ross Taylor could score only 14 in his farewell match but New Zealand registered a comprehensive win of 115 runs against the Netherlands to clean sweep the ODI series 3-0.

The highlights of the second ODI played between New Zealand and the Netherlands will be streamed on Amazon Prime Video. (ANI)


KL Rahul could also be the finisher for Lucknow Super Giants in IPL

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: Former Indian captain and batting great Sunil Gavaskar believes Lucknow Super Giants’ skipper KL Rahul can play the finishers’ role as well in the IPL 2022.

Praising the stylish right-handed batter, Gavaskar said KL Rahul has all the shots in the book to be a finisher for his side.
While speaking on ‘Cricket Live’ on Star Sports, Gavaskar said: “KL Rahul is such an integral part of any team. He opens the batting and gets to bat 20 overs and sets the pace for his team. I believe he has the ability to be the finisher as well.”

“He’s not just somebody who can begin the innings and get the team off to a good start. He has all the shots in the book to finish it off as well. So if he gets going till the 15th-16th over, then LSG can post 200-plus on the board,” Gavaskar added.

Lucknow Super Giants have started their IPL 2022 campaign on a bitter note as they were surpassed by the likes of the Gujarat Titans in their opener. However, Rahul and his men managed to reel things back in as they claimed an emphatic victory against the Chennai Super Kings, chasing down a momentous total of 211.

Lucknow Super Giants will now clash with Sunrisers Hyderabad on Monday at the Dr. DY Patil Sports Academy in Navi Mumbai. SRH are looking for their first win in IPL 2022 after they were drubbed emphatically in the season opener by the Rajasthan Royals. (ANI)

IPL 2022: LSG’s Evin Lewis calls Ayush Badoni ‘confident guy’

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: After bringing his side to victory with his unbeatable knock of 55 runs against Chennai Super Kings, Lucknow Super Giants batter Evin Lewis called his fellow teammate Ayush Badoni a ‘confident guy’.

It was a complete team effort as Lucknow Super Giants chased down a big target of 211 in 19.3 overs against Chennai Super Kings to register a six-wicket win here at Brabourne Stadium.
“Very good pitch, once you get in you can score freely. I just backed my strengths and ability. I think he is a very confident guy. I saw him (Badoni) in the nets. I just try to keep it simple and want to do the best for the team,” said Lewis in a post-match presentation.

Chennai Super Kings batters Robin Uthappa, Moeen Ali, Shivam Dube batted well and took Lucknow bowlers to the cleaners but there was one bowler on the Lucknow side who bagged two wickets and conceded only 24 runs in four overs.

Ayush Badoni has been a real find for Lucknow as the youngster clicked in the first match of the season scoring a half-century and in the successful chase against CSK, the youngster scored an unbeaten 19 from 9-balls to guide his team to a six-wicket win. (ANI)



For the second time in two Tests, Pakistan endured a horrible batting collapse in the Test series against Australia. After the home team lost seven wickets for 100 runs in the second Test in Karachi, Day 3 of the third and final match in Lahore saw Pakistan’s batting appear clueless against the Australian pace duo of Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins. With the ball reverse swinging, Cummins and Starc produced a spell in partnership for the ages as Pakistan, from 214/2, went crumbling and were knocked over for 268.

Cummins finished with 5/56 while Starc grabbed 4/33 as Pakistan lost their last seven wickets for just 20 runs. As expected, the world of Twitter was in an unforgiving mood and took shots at the Pakistan team for their poor show with the bat.

Former England batter and commentator Rob Key said of Cummins: “He is extraordinary the way he is able to just keep coming.

“He never lets up, every single ball … He’s been an inspired choice as captain.”

It was Cummins’ never-say-die attitude and his utmost belief that a result could be salvaged in Lahore that inspired his troops in the final session.

Crucially, his catch brought out-of-form Fawad Alam to the crease.

Of course, Mitchell Starc had a major role to play as he produced his best bowling of the series to skittle both Alam and Mohammad Rizwan.

Then, as Pakistan was drowning, Cummins stepped on its head to finish the day with sensational figures of 5-56.

In doing so, Cummins became just the fifth Australian captain to take a five-wicket haul in an away Test, and the first since Michael Clarke against the West Indies in 2012.

It should be said, however, that for all the excitement of the seven-wicket implosion, achieving a result in Lahore is still far from simple.

The chances of a draw have dramatically reduced, but Australia still must take at least 10 more wickets against a side that has batted for 116 and 171 overs in its past two innings.

As a result, Wednesday night for Cummins will likely be spent considering declaration scenarios rather than reflecting on his individual feat.

For the third time in his captaincy career, Cummins will likely be asked to make a declaration to chase a win late in a Test.

As yet, he has not had a successful declaration, while his deputy, Steve Smith, managed to secure a late win against England in the final session of day five in Adelaide in December when Cummins was forced to miss the match due to being a Covid close contact.

Since then, England held on for an unlikely draw in Sydney with Cummins’ declaration coming too late, while Pakistan grinded out an even less probable draw in Karachi last week.

Unlike either of those Tests, the result of an entire series will largely hinge on Australia’s tactics on day four.

For all of Cummins’ brilliance with the ball, it could be forgotten if he gets it wrong in Lahore.


In one spell, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins have possibly turned the series.

Possibly because, as it was shown in Karachi, wickets remain few and far between.

The duo teamed up to destroy Pakistan, as they took 7-20 to bowl the home side out for 268.

A fast bowler’s paradise? Absolutely not, according to Starc.

“I don’t think the wicket helps the quicks at all,” he said plainly following day three.

“The key is reverse swing.

“For us, Patty and I used that reverse swing today. That’s the one area that’s going to be a big weapon for the bowlers.

“There’s certainly nothing in it for the bowlers.”

Even still, for the first time since the third day of the second Test, Australia got on a roll and had the home side on the back foot.

Time is now their enemy, with Cummins’ Australian side holding just a lead of 134 runs with two days to play.

While Cummins kept Australia in the fight, Starc’s two thunderbolts to bowl Fawad Alam and Mohammad Rizwan in quick succession swung the Test in Australia’s favour.

Starc, who had struggled with the exception of his spell on day three of the second Test, reaped the rewards as he finished with 4-33 from 20.4 overs while his skipper took 5-56 from 24 overs.

The duo are now first and fourth on the leading wicket-takers list for the series, with Cummins’ nine scalps topping the charts.

The opening bowling pair drew comparisons with the best of the best, with their reverse swing and searing pace being compared to Pakistan greats Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis.

Ind Vs SL, Bengaluru Test: Hosts practice under lights to get used to Day-Night conditions

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], March 11 (ANI): The Indian team will be playing their third Day-Night Test on home soil when they take on Sri Lanka in the second and final Test match of the series here at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium.

“We are playing a pink ball test after a long time. We practised under lights. We addressed the adjustments we need to make during the Pink ball Test,” said India vice-captain Jasprit Bumrah in the pre-match press conference.
The last time India played a Day-Night Test match with the Pink ball was against England in Ahmedabad in February 2021.

“As I told you before there are mental changes we have to make because you do not play a lot of Pink Ball cricket. All these things we are still very new to this format like playing under light, fielding and bowling with Pink Ball are things we need to get used to and we keep all of these things in mind while in training sessions. We have not played with Pink ball much at junior level as youngsters. The adjustment depends from person to person. There is no set parameter. The red ball swings in the morning more while the Pink ball in the evening. As far as catching is concerned we practice so that we can adjust to it,” explained Bumrah.

For the Day-Night Test match, the players also have to adjust to a different time of play as the match starts in the afternoon and ends late in the evening.

“When the match ended we had an optional session in Mohali. The times are different. The sleep patterns are different. We practice so that we can adjust to that timing pattern,” said Jasprit Bumrah.

With the match being played under lights it is still not clear whether India will play three seam bowlers or three spinners.

“We had a look at the surface yesterday but today we’ll take a closer look at the pitch. After that we will have a better idea if we want to go into the match with three seamers or three spinners,” the Indian vice-captain told.

All-rounder Axar Patel, who has recovered from a shin injury that forced him to miss the South Africa tour and the T20I series against West Indies, returned to the Indian set-up replacing left-arm chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav for the second Test against Sri Lanka.

“Axar Patel has added a lot of value whenever he has played, has contributed a lot and offers a lot in all departments. He was injured but he jumps straight back in when he’s fit. We will discuss our combination but of course, he is valuable,” said Bumrah about Axar Patel’s comeback.

“We have not removed Kuldeep Yadav from the team. He has been in the bio-bubble for a long time and hence he has been released. Staying in a bubble is not easy. The mental aspect is important. After this he will again be in the bio-bubble during the IPL,” added Bumrah.

When it comes to Pink Ball Tests, India have played two D/N matches on home soil winning both inside three days in Kolkata and Ahmedabad against Bangladesh and England respectively. This will be India’s fourth Pink ball Test overall. (ANI)


Indian pacer Jhulan Goswami becomes joint-highest wicket-taker in Women’s World Cup history

Hamilton [New Zealand]: India’s veteran pacer Jhulan Goswami on Thursday equalled the tally of most wickets in the ICC Women’s World Cup.

Goswami equalled the tally of 39 wickets taken by Lyn Fullston of Australia from 1982 to 1988. The 39-year-old achieved this feat against New Zealand in the ongoing ICC Women’s ODI World Cup 2022 at Hamilton.
On Thursday, Goswami took the record-tying wicket in the last over of the innings against the White Ferns. Goswami knocked Katey Martin over. With the wicket, Goswami became the joint-highest wicket-taker in Women’s World Cup history, joining Lynette Ann Fullston at the top with 39 scalps.

In India’s opening match, she bowled a brilliant spell, returning 2/26, in India’s win over Pakistan.

In an illustrious career spanning two decades, Goswami has now 39 wickets to her name across five Women’s Cricket World Cups since 2005.

Talking about the match, Pooja Vastrakar scalped four wickets as India restricted New Zealand to 260/9 in the ongoing ICC Women’s 50-over World Cup here at Seddon Park.

Amy Satterthwaite and Amelia Kerr played brilliant innings of 75 and 50 respectively. For Women in Blue, Pooja Vastrakar scalped four wickets and was involved in a crucial ran out, while Rajeshwari Gayakwad dismissed two players. (ANI)


There’s something about visiting roots that keeps you grounded: Rahane visits school, first cricket ground

Mumbai (Maharashtra), March 9 (ANI): Star Indian cricketer Ajinkya Rahane took a nostalgic walk down to the memory lane when he visited his alma mater SV Joshi High School in Dombivli, reminiscing memories spent at the school.

The 33-year-old batter, who led the Indian team to a historic Test series triumph in Australia last year, took to social media on Wednesday and posted a video of his visit to the school.
“There’s something about visiting your roots that keeps you grounded. Was at Dombivli with my family and irrespective of how the place changes, it holds the same place in my heart!,” he captioned it.

Rahane was accompanied by his wife Radhika and daughter Aarya as he also took them to the ground, located in the same city, where he learnt the cricketing basics.

He looked back at the time when he took up the sport and dreamed about representing the country at the highest level.’

“I wanted to come here for many years and today it happened. I started cricket from this place, the school backed me. There are several changes now to the school but coming here felt special,” he said.

Rahane, who recently scored a century in a 2021-22 Ranji Trophy encounter, is now gearing up for the upcoming Indian Premier League where he will play for Kolkata Knight Riders. (ANI)


Sweet of Kapil Dev to send a bouquet, handwritten note to home: Ravichandran Ashwin

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India](ANI): Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin talks about the lavish praise he got after he surpassed Kapil Dev’s tally of 434 Test wickets to become India’s second-highest wicket-take for the country after Anil Kumble.

Ashwin expressed how surpassing Kapil Dev’s tally was never even a part of his bucket list, he added it was sweet of Kapil dev for sending bouquets and handwritten notes to his home.
“It’s like a dream. For me getting this number of wickets was never even a part of my bucket list. It was very sweet of Kapil paji, he actually sent a bouquet to my home, and also sent a handwritten note congratulating me on passing him,” said Ravichandran Ashwin in a video posted by BCCI.

“Rohit went out in the press conference and lavished praises on me and he did not know how to react until this morning at the breakfast … that was very sweet. ”

“One day, he took me aside and said Ashwin you just come into the side and I appreciate you speaking in the team meetings and all that but you also need to understand why we say certain things,” he added.

“We say it with the intent to make sure that once you go to the Indian team you are not found wanting with your basics and that really opened the flood gates for me and Raman forever. Because I knew this man had the best intentions in place for anybody that walked on the ground inside this team,” he continued.

Talking about Shane Warne’s unfortunate demise, the spinner called him poster boy and symbol of spin of his time. Adding further he emphasised getting better every day with teammates.

“To me, Shane Warne was a symbol of excellence towards spin. At that particular point of time when Shane Warne was literally the poster boy of spin. I am just looking to get better every single day with utmost joy and happiness on the face, and I am enjoying the face and some of the teammates are enabling me to enjoy these moments better,” he said.

Ashwin achieved this feat on Day 3 of the first Test against Sri Lanka in Mohali on Sunday. Charith Asalanka became Ashwin’s 435th Test scalp. Anil Kumble is India’s highest wicket-taker in Tests with 619 scalps.

India and Sri Lanka will now lock horns in a day-night Test, beginning March 12 in Bengaluru. (ANI)


Whole family is proud of them: Yash Dhull’s father on Team India’s U19 WC triumph


New Delhi [India], (ANI): India U19 skipper Yash Dhull’s father Vijay Dhull has expressed happiness after the Boys in Blue lifted the Under 19 World Cup title.

India lifted a record fifth U19 World Cup title after defeating England in the summit clash here at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium on Saturday.
“Our family and the whole country is happy with the team’s performance in the finals. Being a father, I am really proud that my son and the entire team performed really well. It feels so great that we have been getting many congratulatory messages,” Vijay Dhull told ANI.

“Further, he’ll play domestic cricket. We haven’t plan anything special for his welcome, as we are simple people and Yash also believes in simplicity. Currently, we don’t know when he’s returning yet,” he added.

Meanwhile, Yash Dhull’s mother Neelam Dhull thanked the coaches and the country for their blessings to the team.

“I am thankful to all the coaches for their hardwork and the entire country, who gave blessings to the players,” said Neelam Dhull.

Few of the squad members including Shaik Rasheed and Yash Dhull had tested positive for COVID-19 midway through the tournament, but whoever stepped in did their role perfectly and India did not lose a single game in the 2022 U19 World Cup.

The Yash Dhull-led side defeated the Three Lions in the summit clash by four wickets. Earlier, India had won the U19 World Cup in 2000, 2008, 2012, and 2018.

Chasing 190, India got off to the worst start possible as Joshua Boyden dismissed Angkrish Raghuvanshi (0) on the third ball of the innings. Harnoor Singh and Shaik Rasheed then got together at the crease and the duo put on 49 runs for the second wicket. As soon as India started to gain an upper hand, England stormed right back into the contest in the 18th over as Thomas Aspinwall dismissed Harnoor (21), reducing India to 49/2.

Skipper Yash Dhull next joined Rasheed in the middle and both batters stitched together a partnership of 46 runs which saw Rasheed (50) going past his 50-run mark. However, as soon as he reached the milestone, he ended up giving his wicket away to James Sales. In his next over, Sales picked up the scalp of Dhull (17), and India was reduced to 97/4, still needing 93 runs for the win.

Raj Bawa (35) and Nishant Sindhu (50*) then ensured that India does not lose wickets in a cluster. In the end, India registered a four-wicket win to lift the U19 World Cup for the fifth time. (ANI)

Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul can be very good volleyball players: Kolkata Thunderbolts’ Ashwal Rai


New Delhi [India], (ANI): Ahead of the upcoming Prime Volleyball League, Kolkata Thunderbolts captain Ashwal Rai spoke about his expectations from the tournament.

Kolkata Thunderbolts will kick off their Prime Volleyball League (PVL) campaign starting from Monday next week.
“I think MS Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, and KL Rahul would make very good volleyball players. Dhoni and Pandya can do passing and Rahul can do attack. There was a video of them playing beach volleyball in Dubai, we would feel good if we get a chance to play volleyball with them,” Ashwal told ANI.

“PV Sindhu met us at the ground and she talked to everyone. She is doing promotion, volleyball can come to the level of cricket if there is good standard and the right kind of promotion is given,” he added.

The Prime Volleyball League will get underway on February 5 and the tournament is scheduled to take place at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium which will see the home team of Hyderabad Black Hawks taking on the mighty Kochi Blue Spikers in the opening fixture. The final of the competition will be played on February 27.

The tournament will consist of a total of 24 matches spread over a course of 23 days. Each of the seven franchises – Calicut Heroes, Kochi Blue Spikers, Ahmedabad Defenders, Hyderabad Black Hawks, Chennai Blitz, Bengaluru Torpedoes, and Kolkata Thunderbolts – will play a single round-robin before the top four teams in the league stage qualify for the semi-finals.

“For all the players, this is the right kind of platform to show their skills and performance. Earlier, I did not follow sports much and then I grew up, I started following cricket and football. There is no particular athlete I look up to, I strive for excellence every time I go out to play,” said Ashwal.

Prime Volleyball League 2022 can be watched Live on SONY TEN 1 (English), SONY TEN 3 (Hindi), SONY TEN 4 (Tamil & Telugu) & SONY TEN 2 (Malayalam) channels from February 5. Image(Instagram)

ICC U19 WC: Winning and losing is part of cricket, says Afghanistan skipper Saifi


St John’s [Antigua],: Afghanistan skipper Suliman Saifi expressed disappointment after the side got defeated by England in the semi-final of the ongoing U19 Cricket World Cup, England.

England kept their nerve to become the first team to reach the ICC Under 19 Men’s Cricket World Cup final after edging a thriller with Afghanistan by 15 runs.
“Very difficult time. Momentum (was) with us. We played some great knocks. We are a good team. Winning and losing is part of cricket. Congratulations to England,” said Saifi after the game.

Spinner Rehan Ahmed became the hero for the Young Lions, taking three wickets in the penultimate over at a crucial point when their opponents needed just 18 runs from the last 10 balls.

England will now face the winner of the other semi between Australia and India on Saturday in the final – a remarkable turnaround from the previous tournament just two years ago in South Africa when they finished ninth.

As for Afghanistan, they will head to the Coolidge Cricket Ground for the third-place playoff.

Virat as leader made everyone believe that we can do special things: KL Rahul

Paarl [South Africa] (ANI): India’s stand-in ODI skipper KL Rahul on Tuesday said that Virat Kohli had an amazing quality as a leader and he was able to get the best out of everybody and keep them motivated.
Rahul’s comments come days after Kohli announced his decision to stand down as India’s Test captain. “I think under Virat, Team India has done phenomenal things. We have won series outside India which hadn’t been done before. He has done a lot of things right and he has set a standard for all of us and Team India. It would be important for us to build on that as a group. We obviously know what it takes to be a champion team. Obviously, every series is a different opportunity and every one of us is excited to play here in South Africa,” said Rahul during a virtual press conference.
“When it comes to leadership, Virat had this amazing ability to get the best out of everybody, he pushed everybody and made us believe that we can do special things. That is something I have learnt from him and hopefully, I can do that with the team as well,” he added.
Kohli holds the record for most Test appearances as India Test captain (68) and he also holds the record for most Test wins by an Indian captain (40). Only Graeme Smith, Ricky Ponting, and Steve Waugh have won more matches than Kohli as captain in Test cricket.
“Look, I am not someone who has a lot of plans and I do not really have targets. I take it one game at a time and that is how I play my cricket as a player. That’s how I like to lead the team as well. We have had great captains like MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli. They have shown us the way, under Virat, we have done exceptional things as a white-ball team so the pattern is already set,” said Rahul.
“It is important for us to build on it and keep getting better as a team. We have shown over the years that we are a team that is hungry to do well and keep getting better. We have had an honest chat on where we need to improve as individuals and as a team. For me, as a leader, it will be about supporting the guys and keeping them in a mindset where they are excited about doing good things for the team,” he added.
Last year, Kohli had stepped down as the T20I captain and then he was removed as the ODI skipper after the selectors wanted to have just one captain for the white-ball formats.
India and South Africa will lock horns in a three-match ODI series, with the first match set to be played on Wednesday in Paarl. (Image source: Instagram)

IPL auction in Bengaluru, Ahmedabad looking at Hardik Pandya as skipper

New Delhi [India] (ANI): India all-rounder Hardik Pandya is expected to lead the Ahmedabad-based Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise.
Sources in the know of developments confirmed to ANI that Hardik is indeed being looked like a captain prospect for Ahemdabad. “Yes, Hardik Pandya is being looked at as the skipper for Ahmedabad. The final decision is expected to come out soon,” a source in the known development told ANI.
The 2022 mega auction will take place in Bengaluru in the second week of February.
“The auction will be in Bengaluru, the exact date is not finalised. But it would be held between February 11-13,” the source added.
In November last year, all the existing IPL franchises had revealed the list of their retained players ahead of the mega auction of the upcoming season.
Hardik Pandya was released from Mumbai Indians and the all-rounder will lead the newly formed Ahmedabad-based IPL team in the upcoming edition of the tournament.
MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Sunil Narine, Andre Russell, and Glenn Maxwell are among some of the big names that the existing franchises have decided to retain for IPL 2022.
The two new IPL franchises — Lucknow and Ahmedabad have a budget of Rs 33 crore to pick three players who go back into the pool before the mega auction begins.
For the eight franchises, rules were that they cannot retain more than three Indians (capped/uncapped). They cannot retain more than two overseas players and not more than two uncapped Indian players.
For the two new franchises — Lucknow and Ahmedabad — they cannot pick more than two Indian players (capped/uncapped). They cannot pick more than one overseas player and more than one Indian uncapped player. (Image source: Instagram)

Ajaz Patel named ICC men’s Player of the Month for December

Dubai [UAE]: The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Monday announced Ajaz Patel as the winner of the ICC Men’s Player of the Month Award for December 2021.
New Zealand’s, Ajaz Patel made history in December, when he picked up 10 wickets in an innings against India at Wankhede, becoming only the third player in Tests to achieve that feat after Jim Laker and Anil Kumble. The left-arm spinner played just one Test in the month, where he picked up 14 wickets at an average of 16.07.
Patel picked up all 10 wickets in the first innings against India and in the second innings, he picked up four wickets, including that of openers Mayank Agarwal and Cheteshwar Pujara. Patel finished with figures of 14/225, which are the best bowling figures in a Test match in 2021.
Commenting on Patel’s performance, ICC Voting Academy member JP Duminy said: “What a historic achievement! Taking 10 wickets in an innings is a feat which needs to be celebrated. There’s no doubt that Ajaz’s performance is a milestone that will be remembered for years to come.” (Image source: Instagram)

‘It’s morale booster’: Shardul on receiving praise from Sachin Tendulkar


Johannesburg [South Africa]: Indian bowling all-rounder Shardul Thakur expressed his happiness after he being praised by cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar.

Shardul Thakur picked seven wickets as South Africa was bundled out for 229 in the first innings of the second Test on Tuesday.
Taking to Twitter, Tendulkar wrote, “Congratulations to @imShard on picking up 7 wickets with his steady bowling and variations. Good support by the others.”

On being asked by bowling coach Paras Mhambrey about how he felt after reading the tweet, Shardul said that the praises from Sachin are always a ‘morale booster’ for him.

“It’s my pleasure that the God himself has tweeted about me. Being a Mumbaikar, I have played a few games with him. He has always supported me as a youngster and it’s always good to hear from him, it is a morale booster,” Shardul told Paras Mhambrey.

Apart from Sachin, former India batter VVS Laxman also congratulated Shardul for his ‘lion-hearted display’.

“Lion-hearted display by Shardul Thakur. Best figures by an Indian against South Africa, thoroughly deserved his seven wickets for persistence and intelligence. Has single-handedly brought India back into the second Test. Over to the batters now. #SAvIND,” tweeted Laxman.

Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan also wrote, “Fantastic from shardul.Impressive bowling with an older ball!”

At Stumps on Day Two, India’s scorecard reads 85/2 with Pujara (35) and Rahane (11) on the crease. Just like Day One, 11 wickets fell on the second day as Shardul Thakur dominated the proceedings on Tuesday.

India in the second innings got off to a bad start as stand-in skipper KL Rahul was dismissed in the seventh over. India’s problem further increased when Mayank Agarwal offered no shot and was given LBW out in the 12th over.

Pujara (35*) and Rahane (11) then made sure that India doesn’t suffer any more hiccups as the visitors ended the day at 85/2 with a lead of 58 runs.

India defeat Sri Lanka by 9 wickets to lift U-19 Asia Cup 2021 title

Dubai [UAE]: Angkrish Raghuvanshi smashed a fifty while Shaik Rasheed scored 31* as India defeated Sri Lanka by nine wickets in the final of the Under-19 Asia Cup here on Friday.
India’s target was revised to 102 from 99 in the middle of the chase. Sri Lanka had scored 106/9 and India were given the target of 99 runs due to the DLS method. Chasing, India suffered an early jolt as Harnoor Singh was plummed in front of the stumps in the fifth over.
However, Raghuvanshi and Rasheed stitched an unbeaten 96-run stand to take India home in the summit clash.
Earlier, opting to bat first, Sri Lanka got off to the worst possible start as the side lost two wickets at 15 runs in the 11th over.
It was a slow start as Sri Lanka’s top order struggled to reach the double-digit mark scoring just 37 in the 20 overs.
With wickets falling at regular intervals, Sri Lanka were soon found reeling 57/7. The match was halted due to rain when Sri Lanka were on 74/7 from 32.5 overs.
When the final resumed, the match was reduced to 38 overs per side and Sri Lanka scored 106/9 in the allotted overs.
Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 106/9 (Yasiru Rodrigo 19*; Vicky Ostwal 3-11) vs India 104/1 (Angkrish Raghuvanshi 56*, Shaik Rasheed 31*; Yasiru Rodrigo 1-12) DLS method.

South African wicket-keeper Quinton de Kock announces sudden retirement from Test cricket

Centurion [South Africa]: South Africa wicket-keeper batter Quinton de Kock has announced his retirement from Test cricket with immediate effect.
The announcement comes after the Proteas’ first Test match against India in Centurion, where the visitors won by 113 runs and took a one-nil lead in the three-match series. Cricket South Africa (CSA) said De Kock has cited his intentions to spend more time with his growing family for the timing and reason for his relatively early retirement from the format. He and his wife, Sasha, are anticipating the imminent birth of their first-born child in the coming days.
“This is not a decision that I have come to very easily. I have taken a lot of time to think about what my future looks like and what needs to take priority in my life now that Sasha and I are about to welcome our first child into this world and look to grow our family beyond that,” De Kock said in a statement.
“My family is everything to me and I want to have the time and space to be able to be with them during this new and exciting chapter of our lives.
“I love Test cricket and I love representing my country and all that it comes with. I’ve enjoyed the ups and the downs, the celebrations and even the disappointments, but now I’ve found something that I love even more,” he added.
Twenty-nine-year-old De Kock made his Proteas Test debut against Australia in Gqeberha in 2014. In 54 matches, he amassed 3 300 runs with a high score of 141 not-out, at an average of 38.82 and strike rate of 70.93. He also has six centuries and 22 half-centuries under his belt.
“In life, you can buy almost everything except for time, and right now, it’s time to do right by the people that mean the most to me,” said De Kock.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been a part of my Test cricket journey from the very beginning. To my coaches, teammates, the various management teams and my family and friends – I couldn’t have shown up as I did without your support,” he added.
The former Test captain’s talent as a wicketkeeper set him apart on the world stage, with 232 dismissals, including 221 catches and 11 stumpings.
De Kock has also taken the third-most catches in the inaugural ICC World Test Championship – 48 in 11 matches (47 catches and 1 stumping) and has a personal best of six dismissals in an innings, against England in Centurion in 2019.
“This is not the end of my career as a Protea, I’m fully committed to white ball cricket and representing my country to the best of my ability for the foreseeable future. All the best to my teammates for the remainder of this Test series against India,” De Kock concluded.

David Lloyd announces retirement from cricket commentary

London [UK]: Former England batter and coach David Llyod on Tuesday announced his retirement from commentary.
Llyod was employed with Sky Sports and he was popularly known as ‘Bumble’ by his colleagues. While announcing his decision, Lloyd said that the commentary box feels a little emptier following the departure of David Gower, Ian Botham and Michael Holding. “I’ve decided the time is now right to pass on the microphone,” Lloyd said in a statement, as reported by ESPNcricinfo. “It’s been an immense privilege to try and bring the sport I love into people’s homes up and down the country.”
“Sharing a commentary box in Australia in 2013 with my broadcasting hero Bill Lawry was a real highlight. It has been a great pleasure to work alongside Ian Bishop, Ravi Shastri, Shane Warne, Shaun Pollock, and Ian Smith amongst many others,” he added.
Further in his statement, Lloyd said: “With the passing of Bob Willis and after the decision to move on by my good friends David Gower, Ian Botham and more recently, Michael Holding, the commentary box feels a little emptier. And so I feel it is time for me to do the same and move on to the next chapter.”
“I leave the Sky box now in immensely capable hands led by my pals Michael Atherton, Nasser Hussain, Ian Ward and Rob Key. To those that follow, cherish that mic. Inform and entertain, so the next generation can fall in love with this wonderful game,” he added.
Lloyd’s retirement news comes after a month he issued an apology to Yorkshire player Azeem Rafiq over an exchange in which he had questioned Rafiq’s personal life.
Lloyd had also made some disrespectful comments about the UK’s Asian cricketing community.

‘The harder I tried, the farther it felt’: Ashwin reveals he contemplated retirement in 2018

New Delhi [India]: Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has revealed that in the year 2018 he had given serious thought about retiring after the England series as he felt he was not being adequately backed despite being a stellar performer for the side.
Ashwin has not only been a key cog in the Indian bowling wheel but has also played useful knocks to help the side come out of precarious positions during a game. Ashwin said there was a time three years ago when he used to feel tired just after bowling six balls. The seasoned off-spinner explained how he had to adjust his techniques to keep bowling along the same lines as he used to do.
“Between 2018 and 2020, I contemplated giving up the sport at various points. I thought, ‘I have put in a lot of effort, but it is not coming through.’ The harder I tried, the farther it felt. Especially with athletic pubalgia and the patellar tendonitis – I used to bowl six balls and then I used to be gasping for breath. And there would be pain all over the place. So you needed to make adjustments,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Ashwin as saying.
“When the knee pain got excruciating, the next ball I would probably jump less. When I jumped less, obviously the force needs to be produced through the core and the back and the shoulders, so the pubalgia would act up. So the third ball I would be extra side-on to try to use the hips. By the time I was done with six balls, I would be like, ‘I need a break here’,” he added.
The Indian off-spinner said people were not sensitive towards his injuries and he ran out of people to lean on during the testing times.
“I contemplated retirement for a lot of reasons. I felt like people were not sensitive enough to my injuries. I felt like a lot of people were backed, why not me? I have done no less. I have won a lot of games for the team, and I am not feeling backed,” said Ashwin.
“I don’t usually look for help, that somebody needs to back me, that somebody needs to cushion me or give me empathy. I felt I was not being able to be excellent and felt I needed a shoulder to lean on. It was not happening. I thought maybe I should try to find something else and be excellent at that,” he added.
Ashwin also said he contemplated retirement after Australia too later in 2018 when he was injured again.
“Just after the England series in 2018, after Southampton, was one phase. Again in Australia later that year where I tore my abdomen after the Adelaide Test, before and after Sydney. Many stages,” said Ashwin.
“The only person I would be talking to was my wife. But my father was hell-bent: you will make a comeback in white-ball cricket, and I will see that before I die. For him it was more personal,” he added.
Ashwin will now be seen in action when South Africa and India lock horns in the three-match Test series, beginning on December 26.

On this day in 2017: Rohit Sharma blasted his 3rd double ton in ODIs

New Delhi [India]: Four years ago on this day, Indian opening batter Rohit Sharma blasted his third double century in the One Day Internationals.
Rohit, went on to score 208 runs against Sri Lanka at Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium in Mohali in the match held on December 13, 2017. The right-handed batter smashed 13 fours and 12 sixes to register the score of 208 against Sri Lanka which helped India post a score of 392/4 in the allotted fifty overs. The hosts then went on to win the match by 141 runs.
Rohit has scored two double hundreds against Sri Lanka and one against Australia in ODIs. The right-handed batsman is the only cricketer to smash three double hundred in ODI history.
Legendary batter Sachin Tendulkar was the first cricketer to score a double hundred in ODI cricket.
Rohit was named India’s new ODI skipper last week and he takes the reins from Virat Kohli as India gear up for the upcoming white-ball series.
“I’m deeply honoured and grateful for the opportunity. It’s a huge responsibility. I’m absolutely happy about it. I look forward to leading team India in white ball cricket. It’s going to be an exciting journey, something that I’m looking forward to,” Rohit recently said in an interview posted on the BCCI website
“Whenever I’ve gotten an opportunity I’ve tried to keep it very simple, tried to keep one thing in common which is clear communication to the players, making sure that they understand their role,” he added.
Rohit will now be seen in action in the South Africa series which gets underway from December 26.

Nathan Lyon registers his 400th wicket in Test cricket

Brisbane [Australia]: Australia spinner Nathan Lyon on Saturday finally took his 400th wicket in the longest format of the game.
Lyon achieved the feat in the ongoing first Ashes Test against England here at the Gabba, Brisbane. The off-spinner went on to dismiss Dawid Malan in the 74th over of the innings to take his 400th wicket in Test cricket.
Lyon went on to take four wickets in the second innings — Malan, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson and Mark Wood to pile on the misery on England batters.
Lyon and Pat Cummins got among the wickets as Australia inched closer to victory against England on Day 4 of the ongoing first Ashes Test here at the Gabba, Brisbane on Saturday.
England was bowled out for 297, setting a target of just 20 runs for Australia to win the Gabba Test.
Resuming Day 4 at 220/2, England got off to a horrendous start as Dawid Malan (82), Joe Root (89), and Ollie Pope (4) were dismissed in quick succession and England was reduced to 234/5 in the 78th over. With the wicket of Root, Lyon registered his 400th wicket in the longest format of the game.
Ben Stokes (14), Jos Buttler (23), and Ollie Robinson (8) also failed to stay at the crease for a long haul and England was reduced to 286/8 in the 98th over.
Soon after, Lyon clean bowled Mark Wood (6) and in the end, England was bundled out for 297, setting a target of just 20 for Australia to go 1-0 up in the series.

India become number one ranked Test team after NZ series win

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: Team India became the number one ranked Test team after defeating New Zealand 1-0 in the two-match series.
Mayank Agarwal’s heroics with the bat and Jayant Yadav’s four-wicket haul in the second innings helped India defeat New Zealand by 372 runs in the second Test. With this win, India sealed the two-match series 1-0 and now Virat Kohli’s side will head to South Africa for three Tests and three ODIs, beginning December 26.
Virat Kohli’s side is now three points ahead of second-placed New Zealand in the ICC Test Rankings. While Australia is in third place with 108 points.
Currently, India has 124 points while New Zealand has 121 points.
England is in the fourth spot with 107 points. Both Australia and England will have a chance to improve their ranking as they lock horns in the five-match Ashes.

Ind vs NZ, 2nd Test: Agarwal, Jayant Yadav shine as hosts register 372-run win

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: Mayank Agarwal’s heroics with the bat and Jayant Yadav’s four-wicket haul in the second innings helped India defeat New Zealand by 372 runs in the second Test of the two-match series here at the Wankhede Stadium on Monday.

With this win, India sealed the two-match series 1-0 and now Virat Kohli’s side will head to South Africa for three Tests and three ODIs, beginning December 26.
However, the second Test will be remembered for Ajaz Patel’s ten-wicket haul in the first innings which made him just the third bowler in the history of the game after Jim Laker and Anil Kumble to achieve the feat.

Resuming Day 4 at 140/5, overnight batters Rachin Ravindra (18) and Henry Nicholls managed to add just 22 more runs to the total before the former was scalped by Jayant Yadav and the visitors were starring down the barrel, still needing 378 runs for the win with just four wickets in hand.

In his very next over, Jayant Yadav had Kyle Jamieson and Tim Southee dismissed for a duck and it seemed like that the hosts would wrap up the victory before the lunch break on Day 4.

The final two wickets also fell in quick succession and in the end, New Zealand was bowled out for 167, handing the hosts a 372-run win.

Brief Scores: India 325 and 276/7d; New Zealand 62 and 167 (Daryl Mitchell 60, Henry Nicholls; Jayant Yadav 4-49).

CSA fully confident of hosting series in secure bio-environment

Cape Town [South Africa] : The Proteas men’s team has been part of no less than eight international cricket bio-secure environments (BSEs) in total – these have ranged from home tours against England, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and most recently the Netherlands, to away tours to Pakistan, West Indies, Ireland, Sri Lanka and the ICC T20 World Cup in the United Arad Emirates (UAE) and Oman.
South Africa is slated to host India in three Tests, three ODIs and four T20Is with the tour to commence on December 17. According to the CSA’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr Shuaib Manjra: “CSA has instituted world-class standards and measures to ensure that all players, staff and officials are protected within this environment. Our main focus was to safeguard the cricket biosphere by managing strict entry standards and limited movement outside of its cordon.”
Dr Manjra has emphasized that the BSE has met the highest standards set by the national government and CSA is continuously looking at ensuring that the management of the BSE is second to none in the world.
“What we have implemented at our BSE is a cordon sanitaire which offers full and continuous protection to all individuals who respect and abide by our very demanding guidelines and rules”, added Dr Manjra in an official release.
“Playing cricket in a BSE was a massive challenge for everyone involved in the game,” commented Proteas white-ball captain, Temba Bavuma.
“CSA has to be commended for the way that they have gone about the BSEs. It hasn’t been an easy year for us all. Being confined to a hotel room and being restricted from leaving the hotel and having the choice – in most places away from home – between your room and the team room and little access outside the hotel takes its toll, particularly for the all-format playing members of the team and management. I’m confident that our BSEs are of the highest safety standards and the protocols are set not only with everyone’s physical well-being, but mental health in mind,” he added.
Proteas Test captain, Dean Elgar echoed Bavuma’s sentiments, saying: “It’s hard to believe that we’ve been working in these BSE conditions for a year now, but anyone who has been affected, either directly or indirectly by the COVID-19 virus, knows that this is a necessity if we want to continue playing cricket.”
“It takes a toll on a player mentally and yet this team continues to produce good results and make progress – that’s something that I personally don’t think is being spoken about enough. The measures that have been put in place and the hotels have been chosen take into account the teams’ physical and mental health needs. We don’t know how much longer we’ll be operating like this, but it’s gratifying to know that when tours come around the health and safety of all involved is a top priority,” Elgar concluded.
Chairperson of the CSA Board, Lawson Naidoo commended the resilience and fortitude of the Proteas, saying: “The Proteas have endured difficult BSE conditions occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet their hunger to play the game and represent their country triumphed over all the discomfort. CSA is proud to have athletes of this calibre; those who are readily prepared to put the sport first. We accordingly thank the Proteas for their exemplary zeal and appreciate their sacrifices.”

To survive 52 balls on Day 5 was commendable: Tendulkar

New Delhi [India] : Former India skipper Sachin Tendulkar on Tuesday lauded New Zealand for managing to survive on Day 5 of the first Test against India to walk away with a draw.
“Both #TeamIndia and #NewZealand had their backs against the wall at various stages of this game and both teams fought hard to come back into the game. To survive 52 balls on the last day of the Test was commendable. This is what makes Test match cricket fascinating. #INDvNZ,” tweeted Tendulkar. New Zealand managed to survive by the barest of margins on the last day of the first Test against India after a gritty performance from their lower-order batters insured that visitors walked away with a draw here at Green Park, Kanpur on Monday.
Team India managed to take eight wickets on Day 5 of the ongoing first Test but some late drama and stout-hearted performance from visitors’ batters clawed back victory from the jaws of hosts.
Ravichandran Ashwin on Monday had surpassed Harbhajan Singh to become the country’s third-highest wicket-taker in Test cricket. Ashwin scalped the wicket of Tom Latham (52) to go past the milestone.

Ind vs NZ, 1st Test: Wasn’t thinking too far ahead, was just focusing on present, says Shreyas Iyer

shreyas iyer news

Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) [India]: India batter Shreyas Iyer said that his strategy while playing against New Zealand was to focus on the ‘present’ and play as many balls as possible.

Team India found themselves on top after Shreyas Iyer and Wriddhiman Saha showed grit and determination with the bat to help hosts fight back against New Zealand on Day 4 of the ongoing first Test here at Green Park, Kanpur on Sunday.
“I had been in this situation before as well, not with the Indian team but with my Ranji team. The mindset was to play the session and play as many balls as possible. I wasn’t thinking too far ahead, was just focusing on the present. (On being the first Indian to score a ton and a fifty in debut Test) Yeah, I knew about it. When I came back, one of my teammates told me about it. Yeah, many others have done it from other teams but I was told I am the first from India. It feels good but the most important thing is to win the match,” Shreyas Iyer told host broadcasters Star Sports after the Stumps on Day 4.

“Rahul Sir had told me to bat as many balls as possible and I was determined to do that. We felt that 250 including the first-innings lead would have been a good score, so we’re very happy with where we are now. Actually, not a lot was happening with the wicket today, the ball was keeping a bit low. The talk was to get to a competitive total and I feel that it’s a really good total. We have real spin power, so hopefully, we can get the job done tomorrow,” he added.

Coming to the match, on the cusp of stumps, Team India declared their second innings at 234/7d, giving the visitors the target of 284 to win the match. For hosts, Wriddhiman Saha and Axar Patel remained unbeaten with innings of 61* and 28* respectively.

At stumps, New Zealand’s score read 4/1 with Tom Lathan (2) and William Somerville (0) currently unbeaten at the crease. Ravichandran Ashwin scalped the lone wicket of Will Young in the last session of Day 4.

Great for sport if India-Pak play bilateral cricket series, says Amir

Abu Dhabi [UAE]: Bangla Tigers fast bowler Mohammad Amir on Thursday opened up on his battle with COVID-19 amid the ongoing Season 5 of Abu Dhabi T10 and revealed that he has returned to bowl at the nets sessions.
“I practised for two days. When I run for long or if I speak for too long, I start coughing. It is difficult because you feel fatigued. But as a professional, you need to have the mindset to get yourself out of that zone or it will keep troubling you. You know your responsibilities to your body. I am improving day by day,” Amir said. Amir also went on to speak about the possibility of bilateral series between India and Pakistan being held in Dubai after Chairman of the Dubai Cricket Council Abdul Rahman Falaknaz offered to host the same in the city over the past week.
“It is a good gesture and we should thank him,” Amir said. “But until the governments from the two countries do not sit down to discuss their problems, till then the third parties cannot do anything. It also depends on the cricket boards of both the nations and what their thought process is. If all parties agree, and if there is a bilateral series between India and Pakistan in Dubai, it will be great for the sport,” he said.
The veteran fast bowler also expressed a desire to be a part of the team in the final 4-5 games and also added that he has no pressure from Bangla Tigers.

“I wish to play the last 4-5 games. The team is performing well at this point and we have found our winning combination. It helps me as I can take an extra day or two if needed to recover. There is no pressure from management and they have told me I can play whenever I start to feel better,” Amir added.

Amir, who has played 36 Tests, 61 ODIs, and 50 T20Is for Pakistan, spoke about the intricacies of playing as a fast bowler in the T10 format, where each bowler only gets to bowl two overs per innings.

“You feel pressure every second in T10. It is good for a player to be under experience because it improves the skills of a player. It is a very tough tournament for a bowler because the margin of error is minimal. There is no room to settle. Your game awareness increases as you are constantly planning how you can bowl a dot ball or prevent boundaries,” Amir said.

“If I get swing on the surface, I will take my chance with it. It does not matter which format it is, you should always go with your strengths. If you are not able to find swing, then you have to change your plans in T10 because batsmen come with the mindset to start hitting shots straightaway. You may need to start bowling as one does in death overs,” he added.

Amir also slammed trolls for criticising Pakistan fast bowler Hasan Ali for dropping Matthew Wade’s catch in the World Cup T20 semifinal against Australia and praised the team for their performance in the tournament.

“Our team went to World Cup after New Zealand series and England series were cancelled. Coaches came in contracts of one-two months. There was a change in management. Performing in this environment is a big achievement. Even India, who were playing Indian Premier League in UAE, were not able to qualify for the semifinal stages,” Amir said.

“Those who troll have no cricket sense. Every player has dropped catches in their career, and Hasan is a good fielder. Also, we did not lose the match because of the dropped catch. You cannot troll this team, you can only give them credit for how well they played,” he added.

Ind vs NZ, 1st Test: Southee takes field, Shreyas Iyer shows grit

Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) [India]: New Zealand pacer Tim Southee took the field for his side in the third session of ongoing Day 1 of the first Test against India after walking off for treatment on his right groin.

“Southee was off the field having some treatment on his right groin. Back on the field now,” read an official statement from BlackCaps management.
New Zealand made slow yet steady progress in the second session of the first Test as India lost the crucial wickets of Ajinkya Rahane, Cheteshwar Pujara and Shubman Gill at the Green Park Stadium on Thursday.

At Tea on Day 1, India’s score read 154/4 with Shreyas Iyer (17) and Ravindra Jadeja (6) unbeaten at the crease.

Earlier, Gill scored a gutsy fifty while Cheteshwar Pujara stood tall as India held the fort after Mayank Agarwal’s early dismissal in the opening session. (ANI)

Bangladesh needs to do soul searching

Dhaka [Bangladesh]: Former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi feels the Bangladesh team need better wickets to showcase their talent rather than competing on poor pitches and giving “ordinary” performances in World Cups.

Mohammad Rizwan (40) and Haider Ali (45) starred with the bat as Pakistan defeated Bangladesh by five wickets in the third and final T20I here at the Shere Bangla National Stadium on Monday.
Afridi congratulated Pakistan on the victory and said the side needs to carry the winning momentum.

“Congratulations Pakistan!! A bit too close for comfort at the end. Great to see the team maintain winning ways, so important for a team to carry on the winning momentum,” Afridi tweeted.

The former Pakistan skipper also pointed out that Bangladesh “desperately” need better pitches if they want to improve as a team.

“Bangladesh really need to do some soul searching, do they want to win on such pitches and give ordinary performances abroad and in World Cups? They have great talent and passion for the game but desperately need better pitches if they want to progress,” Afridi tweeted.

With this win, Pakistan won the three-match series 3-0 and now both teams will square off in a two-match Test series, beginning on Friday in Chittagong.

Tim Paine steps down as Australia’s Test captain

Melbourne [Australia]: Australia Test skipper Tim Paine has stepped down as the captain of the side ahead of the much-awaited Ashes opener.
England and Australia will lock horns in the five-match Ashes, beginning December 8 at the Gabba, Brisbane. Cricket Australia on Friday informed about Paine’s decision to leave captaincy “immediately”.
“Tim Paine has advised the Board of Cricket Australia of his decision to stand down as captain of the Australian men’s Test team, effective immediately,” Cricket Australia (CA) said in a statement.
Cricket Australia said the Board has accepted Paine’s resignation and will now accelerate the process of identifying and appointing a new Test captain.
“Tim felt it was in the best interests of his family and Australian cricket to take this decision to step down as captain,” CA Chair Richard Freudenstein said in a statement.
“The Board has accepted Tim’s resignation and will now work through a process with the National Selection Panel of identifying and appointing a new captain.
“While the Board acknowledges an investigation cleared Tim of any breach of the code of conduct regarding this matter some years ago, we respect his decision.
“CA does not condone this type of language or behaviour,” the statement concluded.

Surprised Dravid took up India head coach’s job, says Ricky Ponting

New Delhi [India]: Former Australia skipper Ricky Ponting has said he is surprised that Rahul Dravid took the head coach’s position of the Indian team looking at how he has a young family at home.
Dravid’s coaching stint got off to a good start on Wednesday as Team India defeated New Zealand by five wickets in the first T20I of the three-match series. “Actually, I’m surprised that Dravid has taken it up as well. There was a lot of chat about how happy he was in the Under-19 role he had. I’m not sure about his family life but I’m sure he has got young kids. So I’m surprised that he took it but as I said, the people I spoke to were sure they got the right person so they were probably able to get Dravid to do it,” Ponting said on the Grade Cricketers Podcast.
Ponting also revealed that he was approached with the Team India head coach offer, but he had to turn it down.
“I had a couple of conversations with some people during the IPL about it (the head coach position). The people I spoke to were pretty hell-bent to find a way to make it work. The first thing I said was that I can’t give that much time, that means I can’t coach in the IPL,” he added.
The former Australian skipper is currently the head coach of the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Delhi Capitals. His team had made it to the playoffs of the IPL 2021 season.

Sky is not the limit, it’s benchmark: Suryakumar

Jaipur (Rajasthan) [India]: After playing a match-winning knock against New Zealand, India batter Suryakumar Yadav said that he loved how things went in his favour and it was good to play a match-winning knock.

Suryakumar Yadav (62) and Rohit (48) starred with the bat as India chased down 165 to defeat New Zealand by five wickets in the first T20I of the three-match series here at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium.
“I think the sky is not the limit, going forward it should be a benchmark. Really loved the way things went for me on the ground, just wanted to bat in the same way like I was doing in the nets. I think New Zealand’s preparation was really good, they did not let me explore the cover drive option so I had to play other shots,” Suryakumar told Ravichandran Ashwin in a video posted on

“I played out Mitchell Santner, this is the call me and Rohit took. Really disappointed, would have loved to finish the game. It was my wife’s birthday so I dedicate my Man of the Match award to her,” he added.

Earlier, Martin Guptill and Mark Chapman played knocks of 70 and 63 respectively as New Zealand posted a total of 164/6. For India, Ravichandran Ashwin and Bhuvneshwar Kumar returned with two wickets each.

Rahul Dravid’s coaching stint got off to a winning start as Rohit Sharma-led India defeated New Zealand by five wickets in the first T20I.

With this win, India gained a 1-0 lead in the three-match series, with the second game set to be played on Friday. (ANI)

Babar named skipper as Indian players miss cut in ICC Most Valuable Team of T20 WC

Dubai [UAE]: No Indian cricketer featured in the ICC men’s T20 World Cup Most Valuable Team of the Tournament as players from six teams were named on Monday following the conclusion of the showpiece event.

Stars from champions Australia, runners-up New Zealand, semi-finalists England and Pakistan as well as Sri Lanka and South Africa feature in the star-studded line-up.
Opening batter David Warner, leg-spinner Adam Zampa and seamer Josh Hazlewood all made the cut for Australia after helping steer their side to their first-ever ICC Men’s T20 World Cup title.

There are also spots for England ace Jos Buttler as wicket-keeper, Pakistan’s Babar Azam as captain, New Zealand left-armer Trent Boult and Sri Lanka star Wanindu Hasaranga — the tournament’s leading wicket-taker — in the line-up.

According to ICC, the side was pulled together by a selection panel featuring commentators, former international players and journalists.

“As with any team selection, there will be varying opinions and robust discussion on the final composition of the squad. The panel respects that, and we encourage the strong debate that will ensue,” said Ian Bishop, who was one of the members of the selection panel.

“This team was incredibly difficult to select over such a highly competitive tournament. Selections were based predominantly on the Super 12 onward to the final,” he added.

The team of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 (in batting order) is:

  1. David Warner (Australia) – 289 runs at 48.16
  2. Jos Buttler (wk) (England) – 269 runs at 89.66, five dismissals
  3. Babar Azam (Captain, Pakistan) – 303 runs at 60.60
  4. Charith Asalanka (Sri Lanka) – 231 runs at 46.20
  5. Aiden Markram (South Africa) – 162 runs at 54.00
  6. Moeen Ali (England) – 92 runs at strike rate of 131.42, seven wickets at 11
  7. Wanindu Hasaranga (Sri Lanka) – 16 wickets at 9.75
  8. Adam Zampa (Australia) – 13 wickets at 12.07
  9. Josh Hazlewood (Australia) – 11 wickets at 15.90
  10. Trent Boult (New Zealand) – 13 wickets at 13.30
  11. Anrich Nortje (South Africa) – nine wickets at 11.55
  12. Shaheen Afridi – seven wickets at 24.14 Warner, who was named as the Player of The T20 World Cup, came into the tournament in uncharacteristically patchy form but laid those demons to rest in style with a power-packed set of performances. The left-handed Australian opener racked up a tally of 289 runs — the second most of the tournament — at a healthy average of 48.16 to help propel his team to victory in Sunday’s Dubai final. Warner struck 65 against Sri Lanka in the Super 12 stages, before a breath-taking 89 not out against the West Indies and then 49 against Pakistan in the semi-finals placed his team on the cusp of global glory. And his 53 in the final provided the perfect support act for Mitchell Marsh — 77 not out — as Australia chased down a total of 173 to clinch their maiden ICC Men’s T20 World Cup crown. (ANI)

Finch reckons toss won’t be big factor

Dubai [UAE] : Australia skipper Aaron Finch on Saturday reckoned that toss would not be a big factor in the T20 World Cup final against New Zealand. Australia and New Zealand will square off in the finals of the World Cup on Sunday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
“Absolutely it can be overcome. At some point, to win this tournament you’re going to have to win batting first. I was actually hoping to lose the toss against Pakistan because I would have loved to put a score on the board in that semi-final. It was one of those ones where you’re probably never going to bat first but you don’t mind if you have to. It’s the same going into the final,” Sydney Morning Herald quoted Finch as saying. “We saw it in the IPL final. Chennai were able to put a big score on the board and really squeeze there. It comes down to the day. If you can put a total on the board and make the opposition take risks early in their innings, then that’s what it’s all about,” he added.
Finch also said that every team throughout the world wants to chase in the shortest format, but he also talked about the importance of putting big scores on the board.
“I reckon around the world a lot of teams love chasing in T20 cricket. It does come with its risks, though. If an opposition puts up a big total on the board, it can be difficult to chase it down, regardless of where you’re playing. It’s a Catch 22, but the trend of the tournament has been chasing,” said Finch.
“Anytime you play New Zealand you know how much of a contest it’s going to be. They’re so disciplined in all three facets of the game. Their fielding is outstanding and they’re a team you have to be on for all 40 overs if you’re going to get over the line. They seem to just hang around for long enough in any kind of contest and wear you down. They fight and scrap in every situation,” he added.

T20 WC: Unbeaten Pakistan look to shed ‘unpredictable’ tag, Aussies eye second final

Dubai [UAE]: Pakistan and Australia will lock horns on Thursday at the Dubai International Stadium in the second semi-final of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.

While Aaron Finch’s men are now just two wins away from tasting T20 World Cup glory for the very first time, Pakistan will look to continue the momentum from the Super 12 stage.
The Men in Green will clearly enter the semi-final as hot favourites as they remain the only unbeaten side so far in the showpiece event, having won all five games in Group 2. Meanwhile, Australia, who advance in top-4 clash from ‘group of death’, have lost just one match till now.

This will be Pakistan fifth appearance in the T20 WC semi-finals. The 2009 champions have reached this stage in the first four editions (2007, 2009, 2010, and 2012). On the other hand, Australia who is yet to win the tournament will be playing their fourth semi-final (2007, 2010, and 2012).

The two sides have met 23 times in T20I cricket, with Pakistan leading the head-to-head series 13-9 (1 NR). Pakistan and Australia last faced each other in T20Is in November 2019, Aussies won the three-match series 2-0.

As far as the T20 World Cup is concerned, both sides have won three matches each. Australia won by 21 runs when both teams last faced each other in the 2016 edition.

For Australia, all eyes will be on David Warner who has amassed 187 runs at an average of 46.75 in this edition. Another Aussie who will have his say in the heavyweight clash is Adam Zampa. Only Sri Lanka’s Wanindu Hasaranga has taken more wickets than Australia’s x-factor spinner. Accompanying him will be the pace trio of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins, and Glenn Maxwell’s tricks.

With two half-centuries and an average of 71.33, Pakistan will rely on their opening batter Mohammad Rizwan. Alongside the star keeper will be captain Babar Azam who is the only batter who has scored more runs than Rizwan in this tournament.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s fast bowlers are breathing fire especially Shaheen Shah Afridi. The star opening bowler has been dangerous with the new ball and canny at the death throughout the tournament.

Emotions and excitement will be at an all-time high on Thursday when the two teams face each other in what is being touted as a mouth-watering clash. (ANI)

T20 WC: New Zealand eliminate India with 8 wicket win

New Zealand reach semis with eight-wicket win.

All hopes for the Indian cricket team were dashed thanks to a classy and controlled performance from New Zealand. Led by Williamson and supported by Conway, the black caps strolled to victory and to the semis as a fighting but poor Afghanistan team succumbed to a dismal defeat.

New Zealand beat Afghanistan by eight wickets in their last Super 12 stage match of the ongoing T20 World Cup at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.

Chasing a total of 125 runs, New Zealand lost both the openers in the first 10 overs but an unbeaten 68-run partnership between skipper Kane Williamson (40*) and Devon Conway (38*) guided New Zealand to victory and semi-final qualification. With this result, India and Afghanistan are both out of the race for the final four. However, the Virat Kohli-led side has one more game left in the tournament against Namibia on Monday. The result of the India-Namibia game will make no change in India’s fate in the ongoing tournament. This is also the first time since 2012 that India failed to make it to the semi-finals of any ICC event– 2013 (Champions Trophy- winners), 2014 (T20 World Cup- runners-up), 2015 (ODI World Cup- semi-finalists), 2016 (T20 World Cup- semi-finalists), 2017 (Champions Trophy- runners-up), 2019 (ODI World Cup- semifinalists), 2021 (World Test Championship- runners-up).

After a decade India failed to make it to semis in an ICC tournament. But, what will hurt more is another great opportunity lost.

T20: NZ spinner Sodhi ready

Abu Dhabi [UAE], November 6 (ANI): New Zealand spinner Ish Sodhi is available for the clash against Afghanistan in the T20 World Cup on Sunday.

New Zealand and Afghanistan will lock horns with each other on Sunday in Group 2 of the Super 12 stage.
“Sodhi is available for tomorrow’s final pool game against Afghanistan. Since being struck on the head by the ball while bowling in yesterday’s game, he has passed all of his concussion Tests and continues to be monitored in line with health protocols,” a statement from New Zealand Cricket (NZC).

Meanwhile, Ish Sodhi said the New Zealand batters have taken it into consideration ahead of Afghanistan.

“Absolutely. Spearheaded by Rashid Khan obviously Mujeeb Ur Rahman is phenomenal as well. But Mohammad Nabi is a very cagey offspinner and bowls well through the powerplay too. That’s definitely where their threat lies with their bowling attack,” said Sodhi as per ICC in a virtual press conference.

“And I’m sure all the batsmen during the scouting meeting have taken it into consideration, as well as the threat they bring with the bat.

“I know we spoke about it in depth this morning with our scouting and things like that. So hopefully we can put together some good performances tomorrow,” he added. (ANI)

T20 WC: End of a generation, says Pollard

Abu Dhabi [UAE] : West Undies captain Kieron Pollard said it’s the end of a generation after the Caribbean team was defeated by Australia in their final Super 12 match of the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Saturday.
Half-centuries for David Warner and Mitchell Marsh, and four wickets for Josh Hazlewood made it four wins in five matches for Australia in Group 1. Warner made 89* off 54 while Marsh supported him with 53 off 32 as they chased down the target of 158 with eight wickets and 22 balls to spare. For West Indies, it was an emotional end to their title defence. The two-time champions showed glimpses of their era-defining T20 batting as they bid farewell to Dwayne Bravo and potentially Chris Gayle. However, they finished their ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 campaign with only one win in the Super 12 stage.
In the post-match presentation, Kieron Pollard said: “I think overall has been a disappointing campaign. The batting has lived up to expectations, bowling has been decent. We could have done better with the fielding as well. Overall we weren’t good enough.”
“But for me, it’s the end of a generation/era where you have some guys who have done some good things for T20 cricket, not only in the Caribbean but around the world. Sometimes one tournament you don’t want to sum up the entire thing when it comes to that but rationally these guys have done pretty well for themselves and we as people are very, very proud,” he continued.
“Obviously we need to look at the way we play T20 cricket again. Our team is set-up for powerhitters to do a lot of damage but we weren’t able to do that. We have seen in these conditions that one guy in that top four has to bat through, when you get in try and stay as long as possible. It’s hard for the guys to come and hit straightaway. That is something that we need to do better but the good thing is that we have to start from foundation now and that’s the reality of the situation. There is nothing that we can do about it now. That journey would not have just started at this World Cup,” the all-rounder explained.
“The journey would have started earlier to get points accumalated whatever needed to qualify. For us it is what it is. We have to live with that. Couple of years ago we have to qualify for the 50-over World Cup and we did. So whoever in the position in terms of personnel now, we have to rebuild and do it. Thanks to everyone who have supported us. Thanks to the Caribbean fans, yes we disappointed you as a team, sorry. But life goes on. Thank you very much,” he added.

India openers register fastest team fifty of T20 WC 2021

Dubai [UAE] : Team India on Friday registered the fastest team fifty of the ongoing ICC men’s T20 World Cup.
The Men in Blue achieved the feat against Scotland in the Group 2 match of Super 12 stage of the ongoing ICC men’s T20 World Cup here at Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Chasing 86, India reached the 50 run mark in just four overs and registered an eight wickets win.
India needed to chase the target in 7.1 overs to better their net-run rate from Afghanistan but the Virat Kohli-led side did the needful in 6.3 overs. Rahul and Rohit kept smashing boundaries as India raced to 70 in the five overs.
However, Bradley Wheal removed Rohit on 30 but India kept inching closer to a thumping win.
In the end, India chased down the target in just 6.3 overs, minutes after losing the wicket of Rahul.
Earlier, put in to bat first, Scotland got off to a bad start as they lost two wickets inside the powerplay. The side never really recovered as India starred with the bowl as Scotland were restricted to 85/10 in the Group 2 match.
For Scotland, George Munsey and Michael Leask played the innings of 24 and 21 as no batter of their side crossed the 30-run mark.

Jasprit Bumrah becomes India’s leading wicket-taker in men’s T20Is

Dubai [UAE] : Pacer Jasprit Bumrah on Friday became India’s leading wicket-taker in men’s T20Is as he surpassed spinner Yuzvendra Chahal’s tally.
Bumrah achieved the feat in the ongoing match against Scotland in ICC men’s T20 World Cup here at Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Friday. Bumrah dismissed Mark Watt to wrap up Scotland innings in the 18th over and went past Chahal’s tally of 63 wickets.
Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin is third in the list with 55 wickets under his belt as Bumrah tops the chart with 64 scalps for India.

Bumrah also has most maiden overs in men’s T20Is. The India pacer has bowled 8 maiden overs while former Sri Lanka bowler Nuwan Kulasekara has six maidens.
Coming to the match, India starred with the bowl as Scotland were restricted to 85/10 in the Group 2 match. Mohammed Shami and Ravindra Jadeja were the picks of the bowlers as they scalped three wickets each for India.
For Scotland, George Munsey and Michael Leask played the innings of 24 and 21 as no batter of their side crossed the 30-run mark.

T20 WC: KL Rahul interacts with Scotland players after game

Dubai [UAE] : Star India opener KL Rahul on Friday interacted with Scotland players after the team’s thumping win in the Group 2 match of Super 12 stage of the ongoing ICC men’s T20 World Cup here at Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
Mohammed Shami and Ravindra Jadeja starred with the ball before KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma’s firing knocks helped India defeat Scotland by eight wickets. Moments after hitting a 19-ball 50 to take India home against Scotland, Rahul spent time speaking to some of the Scotland players as he shared his experience of playing at the top level against some of the best in the business.
Coming back to the game, Chasing 86, India got off to a firing start as the openers registered the fastest team fifty of the ongoing tournament.
India needed to chase 86 runs in 7.1 overs to better their net-run rate from Afghanistan but the Kohli-led side did the needful in 6.3 overs.
“We spoke about the 8-10 over bracket before the start, didn’t want to really go too hard because if you lose wickets, then an extra 20 balls could cost. We thought that if they play naturally, runs will come quickly,” said Kohli after the win.
Having registered a thumping win, Kohli and boys will now be keeping an eye on New Zealand vs Afghanistan match on Sunday.
“A dominating performance, something that we were striving to do again. Now it will be interesting to see what happens on 7th (November). Don’t want to say a lot about today’s performance, we know what we can do,” said Kohli after the win.
“Also tells you how important the toss can be at this venue. We wanted to get them under 110-120 max, that was the mindset we went in with. The bowlers were excellent, and then KL and Rohit did really well,” he added. 

ICC Player of the Month: Shakib Al Hasan shortlisted for October

Dubai [UAE]: Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan has been nominated as the player of the month for October by the International Cricket Council (ICC).

ICC on Thursday announced the October nominees for the ICC Player of the Month awards, instituted in January this year to recognise the best international performances across formats for male and female cricketers.
The nominees for October in the men’s category are Bangladeshi all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, Pakistan’s power hitter and finisher Asif Ali and Namibia’s prolific batter David Weise.

Whilst in the women’s category Ireland’s all-rounder Laura Delany and right-handed batter Gaby Lewis make the list along with Zimbabwe’s captain and all-rounder Mary-Anne Musonda.

ICC Men’s Player of the Month for October:

Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh)

Shakib Al Hasan played six T20Is last month as part of the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 in UAE and Oman. He scored a total of 131 runs with a strike rate of 109.16 and took a total of 11 wickets with an economy rate of 5.59. This is Al Hasan’s second nomination in the year.

Asif Ali (Pakistan)

Pakistan’s prolific middle-order batter Asif Ali played three T20Is last month also in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World 2021 where he scored a total of 52 runs with a strike rate of 273.68. His breakthrough performance was when he scored 27 out of just 12 balls to help defeat New Zealand.

David Wiese (Namibia)

Namibian veteran all-rounder David Weise has had a spectacular ICC Men’s T20 World Cup so far. He played eight T20Is where he scored a total of 162 runs with a strike rate of 132.78 and took seven wickets with an economy rate of 7.23.

Laura Delany (Ireland)

Ireland’s all-rounder Delany played four ODIs against Zimbabwe last month and scored a total of 189 runs with a strike rate of 108.62.

Gaby Lewis (Ireland)

Gaby also played four ODIs against Zimbabwe and scored a total of 263 runs with a strike rate of 77.35. Lewis was the leading run-scorer in Ireland’s ODI series win against Zimbabwe, scoring 65, 96 not out and 78 in the last three matches as Ireland recovered from 1-0 down to win the series 3-1 with Zimbabwe.

Mary-Anne Musonda (Zimbabwe)

Musonda captained Zimbabwe in four ODIs against Ireland and scored a total of 169 runs with a strike rate of 90.86. On a day that proved historic for Zimbabwe as they played their first ODI since being granted the status, Mary-Anne Musonda’s unbeaten century had powered them to a four-wicket win against Ireland.

The three nominees for either category are shortlisted based on performances from the first to the last day of each calendar month. The shortlist is then voted on by the independent ICC Voting Academy and fans around the world. The ICC Voting Academy comprises prominent members of the cricket fraternity including well-known journalists, former players, broadcasters, and members of the ICC Hall of Fame. (ANI)

Rahul Dravid is new Head Coach

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: The Cricket Advisory Committee comprising Sulakshana Naik and RP Singh on Wednesday unanimously appointed Rahul Dravid as the head coach of Team India (Senior Men).
The former India captain will take charge from the upcoming home series against New Zealand. The BCCI had invited applications for the said position on October 26 to appoint Mr Ravi Shastri’s successor, whose term gets over after the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup.
The Board congratulates Shastri (former Team Director & Head Coach), B. Arun (Bowling Coach), R. Sridhar (Fielding Coach) and Vikram Rathour (Batting Coach) on a successful tenure. Under Shastri, the Indian Cricket Team adopted a bold and fearless approach and performed creditably both in-home and away conditions. India climbed to the top position in the Test format and made it to the final of the inaugural World Test Championship in England.
India became the first Asian team to win a Test series in Australia (2018-19) and followed it with another series win in 2020-21. India were also the first team to win all 5 T20Is in a bilateral series when it blanked New Zealand 5-0. Under Shastri and his team’s guidance, India won all their seven Test series at home.
Sourav Ganguly, President, BCCI in a release said: “The BCCI welcomes Rahul Dravid as the Head Coach of India’s senior men team. Rahul has had an illustrious playing career and is one of the greats of the game. He has also served Indian cricket as Head of National Cricket Academy (NCA) with distinction. Rahul’s effort at the NCA has nurtured several young cricketing talents who have gone on to represent the country at the international stage. I am hopeful that his new stint will take Indian cricket to new heights.”
Jay Shah, Honorary Secretary, BCCI said: “There is no better person than Rahul Dravid and I am delighted to see him being appointed as the Head Coach of the Indian Cricket Team. With two World Cups scheduled to take place in the next two years, it is important to have a seamless transition, and the former India captain is the right man for the job. Having provided the much-needed direction to NCA and overseen the progression of the boys at India U-19 and India A level, we believe this is also a natural progression for him as a coach. I have no doubt that under him, the Indian team will dominate in all formats. The Board will soon make appointments of other coaching staff, who will support the Head Coach in jointly achieving our targets.”
Rahul Dravid, Head Coach, Team India said: “It is an absolute honour to be appointed as the new Head Coach of the Indian Cricket Team and I am really looking forward to this role. Under Mr Shastri, the team has done very well, and I hope to work with the team to take this forward. Having worked closely with most of the boys either at NCA, U19 and India A setup, I know they have the passion and desire to improve every day. There are some marquee multi-team events in the next two years, and I look forward to working with the players and the support staff to achieve our potential.”

T20I Rankings: Babar Azam becomes top-ranked batter

Dubai [UAE]: Pakistan captain Babar Azam’s two successive half-centuries in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 have helped him overtake England’s Dawid Malan and grab the top position for batters in the ICC Men’s T20I Player Rankings.

Babar, who scored 51 against Afghanistan and 70 against Namibia to lead the 2009 champions into the semifinals, is at the top for the sixth time in his career. The 27-year-old had first attained top position on January 28, 2018. He is presently also ranked No. 1 in ODIs.
Babar’s tally of 834 rating points keeps him 36 points ahead of Dawid Malan but Babar’s career-best remains 896 rating points that he achieved after scoring 65 against England at Cardiff on 5 May 2019. Malan had been at the top since 29 November last year.

England’s performances in the tournament too reflect in the rankings, with both their openers Jos Buttler and Jason Roy moving up in the latest weekly update. Buttler has gained eight slots to reach a career-best ninth position after smashing his maiden T20I hundred against Sri Lanka while Roy is up to five places to 14th.

Meanwhile, Sri Lanka leg-spinner Wanindu Hasaranga has topped the bowling charts for the first time in his career after two successive three-wicket hauls against South Africa and England. He replaces South Africa’s Tabraiz Shamsi, who was at the top since 10 April this year.

The top four bowlers in the rankings are all wrist spinners, with England’s Adil Rashid overtaking Afghanistan’s Rashid Khan to take third place with a career-best 730 rating points. A fast bowler who has made rapid rise is South Africa’s Anrich Nortje, who has gained 18 slots to reach the seventh position.

At the top of the all-rounders’ table, Mohammad Nabi has caught up with Shakib Al Hasan on 271 rating points. Hasaranga is fourth on this list. (ANI)

Will Pucovski unlikely for first Ashes Test

Melbourne [Australia] : Australia opening batter Will Pucovski is unlikely to be available for the first Ashes Test against England, beginning December 8 at the Gabba, Brisbane.
Victoria coach Chris Rogers on Wednesday confirmed that the opening batter will miss Victoria’s upcoming Sheffield Shield clash due to concussion. “He hasn’t quite recovered as well as hoped for this game from the concussion. In discussions with the medical team and national selectors, it was felt that we’d give him a bit more time before he’s selected to play for Australia,” quoted Pucovski as saying.
“All the people in these conversations understand we’ve got an immense talent on our hands and we want him to be playing in three to five to 10 years. These are the decisions we’re going to make in his best interests and hopefully, we can set him up to play for a long career,” he added.
Further giving an update, Rogers said: “No doubt it’s a setback – I’d say now it’s unlikely he’ll play in the first Test. If we do play a third Shield game in mid-November, and there might be a second XI game for Victoria as well, that might prepare him for one of the matches in the middle of the Ashes series. That’s the best-case scenario at the moment.”
Pucovski had suffered a concussion last month during a training incident. The opening batter still continues to show concussion symptoms.
“No doubt there’s a lot of frustration for him. He wants to be playing. It’s an interesting one, he hasn’t played for seven months so to walk straight back into the cauldron and have to perform against very good opposition, that’s going to be really difficult. That would have been playing on his mind as well,” said Rogers.
“I think the decision is to look after him and give him a bit more time to prepare him in the right way rather than rush him into matches that are going to have a lot of intensity and a lot of scrutiny. He’s still so young and there’s so much time left in in the game for him so there’s no need to rush him back into a Test series, when he hasn’t even played professional cricket in seven months,” he added.

T20 WC: Dhoni, Kohli and Shastri discuss strategy ahead of must-win game against Afghanistan

Dubai [UAE] : Team India skipper Virat Kohli, chief coach Ravi Shastri and mentor MS Dhoni were seen discussing strategies at the end of Tuesday’s optional training session at the ICC Academy in Dubai. This was followed by another round of discussion between Kohli and Dhoni before the team wrapped up the session.
Interestingly, it was Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav who were earlier engaged in a long chat after their training session while Dhoni was busy chatting with Shastri as they watched the batsmen fine-tune their skills at the nets. Skipper Virat Kohli and deputy Rohit Sharma were the first to hit the nets as the frontline pacers like Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami gave the session a miss to recover for the game on Wednesday. Another good news was the presence of batsman Suryakumar Yadav.
Having missed the crucial game against New Zealand on Sunday due to back spasm, Surya returned to the training ground and started off with a light jogging session. He followed it up with some fitness drills under the watchful eyes of assistant strength and conditioning coach Soham Desai. Physio Nitin Patel and strength and conditioning coach Nick Webb were right there watching Surya go through the drills.
While the batting department had almost all the big names present, Rishabh Pant and KL Rahul gave the session a miss.
In the bowling department, the likes of Ravindra Jadeja and Shardul Thakur were present, as were Deepak and Rahul Chahar. All-rounder Hardik Pandya also skipped the session as the team gears up for the toughest game of their campaign in terms of results.

‘God decides your destiny’: Yuvraj Singh hints at comeback from retirement in February

New Delhi [India]: Former Indian all-rounder Yuvraj Singh on Tuesday said that “on public demand” he will be back in February to play cricket.
Yuvraj, who had retired from international cricket in June 2019, played this year’s Road Safety World Series for India Legends. The former all-rounder shared a special message for his fans on Instagram with a video of him whacking boundaries.
“God decides your destiny !!On public demand il be back on the pitch hopefully in February ! Ain’t nothing like this feeling ! Thank you for your love and wishes mean a lot to me ! Keep supporting it’s our team and a true fan will show his or her support in tough times,” Yuvraj said on Instagram.
The 2011 World Cup was memorable for Yuvraj as he was named the Player of the Tournament and he played an important role in India winning the trophy. In the tournament, Yuvraj scored 362 runs and took 15 wickets.
In a career that spanned over 304 ODIs, 58 T20Is, and 40 Tests, Yuvraj imprinted his place in the echelons of cricket as a player who could pretty much win matches for his side either through his electric fielding, deceptive bowling and fierce batting.
Big events brought out the best in him, be it his international cricket entry in the 2000 ICC Champions Trophy, the mind-numbing batting exhibition at the inaugural 2007 World Twenty20, or the all-round performance during the 2011 World Cup.

West Indies Women arrive in Karachi for 3 ODIs ahead of World Cup qualifier

Karachi [Pakistan]: West Indies women’s cricket team on Monday arrived in Karachi to take on Pakistan in the upcoming three-match ODI series which gets underway from November 8.
Karachi’s National Stadium will host West Indies women in the matches on November 8, 11 and 14 following which both sides will travel to Zimbabwe for the ICC women’s Cricket World Cup qualifier to be held from November 21 to December 5. “Our #MaroonWarriors arrived in Karachi earlier today to take on @TheRealPCB Women in 3 ODIs. November 8,11,14 at the National Stadium,” WIndies Cricket tweeted.
This will be Pakistan women’s third bilateral series in 2021 after they toured South Africa in January-February and West Indies in June-July.
The top three of the 10 teams will qualify for the ICC women’s Cricket World Cup 2022, which will be played in New Zealand.
West Indies squad: Stafanie Taylor (captain), Anisa Mohammed (vice-captain), Aaliyah Alleyne, Shemaine Campbelle, Shamilia Connell, Deandra Dottin, Sheneta Grimmond, Chinelle Henry, Qiana Joseph, Kycia Knight, Kyshona Knight, Hayley Matthews, Chedean Nation, Shakera Selman, Rashada Williams
Travelling Reserves: Cherry Ann Fraser, Shabika Gajnabi, Karishma Ramharack

Time is running out, Team India needs to perform miracles: Irfan Pathan

New Delhi [India] : Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan said that the time is running out for the Virat Kohli-led side in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup and the team now needs to perform miracles in order to reach the semi-finals.
Pathan’s comment came after India suffered an eight-wicket loss against New Zealand on Sunday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in the Super 12 stage. “Well done NZ you were too good. And for team India, they need to get together and perform miracles. Time is running out. #indvsnz,” tweeted Pathan.
Trent Boult and Ish Sodhi starred with the ball before Daryl Mitchell smashed 49 off 35 to help New Zealand defeat India by eight wickets in the ongoing T20 World Cup.
India was restricted to 110/7 in the allotted twenty overs against New Zealand. No batter was able to stay at the crease for long, and what followed was a lacklustre performance.
For the all-important clash, India made two changes — Shardul Thakur and Ishan Kishan came in for Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Suryakumar Yadav. Rohit Sharma came into bat at number three, while Ishan came out to open alongside KL Rahul, but this move backfired as Ishan did not manage to leave a mark with the bat.
Kohli and boys will next take on Afghanistan on Wednesday at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.

T20 WC: Final will be either between India-Pakistan or Australia-England

New Delhi [India]: Former Australia spinner Shane Warne has predicted that either India-Pakistan or England-Australia will square off in the finals of the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.

Warne’s prediction came after England hammered Australia by eight wickets on Saturday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in the Super 12 stage.
“I still believe the teams that will top each group & make it through will look like this, plus semi’s & final…England, Australia, Pakistan and India. Semi’s — Eng V India, Aust V Pak So final will be either India V Pak or Aust V England,” tweeted Warne.

Jos Buttler played an unbeaten knock of 71 and his side beat Australia by eight wickets on Saturday at the Dubai International Stadium. The innings was highlighted by 23 runs scored over long-on, including three towering sixes through that region that all travelled more than 90 metres.

England and Pakistan have won all their three games in the World Cup so far. Australia has won two matches out of three.

India has so far played just one game which they ended up losing against Pakistan. Virat Kohli and boys will next take on New Zealand on Sunday evening in Dubai. (ANI)

T20 WC: Team India ‘unwinds’ day off with beach volleyball

Dubai [UAE]: Team India on Friday played beach volleyball to spend some time on their day off ahead of the New Zealand clash in the ongoing T20 World Cup.

The Virat Kohli-led side is gearing for the match against New Zealand and has been training hard for the game following their defeat against Pakistan.
“A game of beach volleyball as #TeamIndia unwinds in their day off,” BCCI tweeted a video where players can be seen playing volleyball.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s interim head coach, Saqlain Mushtaq has said he would love it if his team got the opportunity to face India again in the final of the tournament.

“When you come with a mindset to become a world champion then you don’t think about the opponent. You rather think whoever comes in, you do what you have to do and want to do. So we are thinking on the same lines day in and day out that whoever is against us in the next stage we will accept it,” Saqlain said in a virtual press conference on Thursday.

“If you want to become a world champion then you have to live up to the requirements — being tough, being well-prepared, and playing cricket different from the others, and it shows that you are a genuine World Cup winner. If you want to be a world champion then you should be thoroughly [tested] so that the world actually recognises you,” he added.

India and New Zealand will lock horns with each other on Sunday. (ANI)

T20 WC: South Africa thrash West Indies by 8 wickets

Dubai [UAE] : Aiden Markram and Rassie van der Dussen starred as South Africa thrash West Indies by eight wickets in the Group 1 encounter of Super 12s in the ongoing ICC men’s T20 World Cup here at the Dubai International Stadium on Tuesday.
South Africa chased the target of 144 with eight balls to spare as Markram and Van der Dussen played the innings of 51* and 43* respectively. Chasing 144, excellent work in the field by Russell provided exactly the start West Indies had hoped for as Temba Bavuma walked back in the first over. Hendricks and Van der Dussen then forged a 50-run stand for the second wicket as South Africa consolidate their position in the chase.
Hosein then dismissed Hendricks to give a vital breakthrough to WI but the duo of Van der Dussen and Markram stitched another 50-run partnership and held SA’s innings in good shape.
The pair then cruised South Africa to victory and handed defending champions their second successive defeat in the tournament.
Put in to bat first, West Indies started off cautiously off the blocks initially after which Evin Lewis started to free his arms and took the attack against South African bowlers, especially to the part-time spin of Aiden Markram. At the end of the powerplay, their score read 43/0.
Evin Lewis continued his charge against SA bowlers as he brought up his half-century in the 10th over. But in next over, Maharaj removed dangerous-looking Lewis. He walked back after scoring 56 off 35 balls. Nicholas Pooran followed the opener soon.
The other WI opener, Lendl Simmons was dismissed in the 14th over after his 16 off 35 balls. West Indies lost a few wickets in clumps in the end but managed to make 143 runs in their 20 overs for South Africa to chase.
Brief Scores: West Indies 143/8 (Lewis 56, Pollard 26; Pretorius 3-17) vs South Africa 144/2 (Aiden Markram 51*, Rassie van der Dussen 43*; Akeal Hosein 1-27)

T20 WC: India and Pakistan players walk in together for training

Dubai [UAE] : In what came as a pleasant surprise, the Indian and Pakistani players walked in together to train at the ICC Academy on the eve of their high-voltage clash in the ICC T20 World Cup.
It might be billed as the mother of all battles, but the mood among the players revealed a sense of calmness as both teams trained under lights on Saturday. The Indian boys started with a game of football as Virat Kohli, Mohammad Shami and Rishabh Pant seemed to have fun warming up. Jasprit Bumrah and MS Dhoni though didn’t waste any time in reaching the training nets. While Bumrah and Dhoni chatted with Bharat Arun, R Ashwin was seen training in the adjacent net. Bumrah soon changed nets and headed in to join Ashwin. The overall atmosphere clearly showed a sense of calmness that Dhoni has brought into the squad despite the upcoming game being billed as the game of the tournament.
Speaking to ANI, a source in the know of developments in the team management had said Dhoni’s addition as a mentor for the T20 World Cup has been a huge positive with the former skipper’s room being the go-to place for everyone, be it for serious talks or banter to help relax the mind before the first game of the tournament.
“We start with the game against Pakistan and Dhoni’s presence has seen the whole dressing room wear a calm look. His room is obviously the bonding zone for the players and you can always expect him to come up with the answers to the queries of the youngsters and it hasn’t been any different this time going into the T20 World Cup.
“This team has some of the most talented players in the country, but the big-match experience is something that can only come with time and there isn’t much of that in this team apart from the likes of Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya, Mohammad Shami and a couple of others. The youngsters need that big brother figure in the team to give them a calming influence when they walk out to the middle,” the source explained.
The Indian players have been training smart for the opening game against Pakistan and even won both their warm-up games — against England and Australia. Having played the IPL in the UAE, the Indian players know the conditions well and will definitely hold an edge come Sunday.

Nothing will impact Team India’s performance: Gautam Gambhir on political pressure over India-Pakistan T20 match

New Delhi [India]: Amidst political statements around the high-octane India-Pakistan T20 match slated for tomorrow, cricketer-turned-politician Gautam Gambhir on Saturday exuded confidence over Team India’s victory while adding that nothing will impact its performance.

India-Pakistan T20 match is slated for October 24. The last time the two teams had taken on each other was during the 2019 ODI World Cup.
Speaking to ANI, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP said, “My best wishes are with the team. They have performed well till now. They will surely win. I have full confidence in them.”

Asked about the impact of political pressure on the match, Gambhir said, “The team is doing great. Nothing will impact their performance. The team will play well and will win.”

There is a call for cancelling the match between India and Pakistan from several political leaders following the killings of civilians by terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir, sparking fear in the Valley.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Vice President Rajeev Shukla had said India will have to play arch-rivals Pakistan in the T20 World Cup as no team can refuse to play another side in a tournament organised by International Cricket Council (ICC).

The much-awaited high-octane clash between India and Pakistan in the upcoming T20 World Cup will take place on Sunday in Dubai.

The former cricketer further refuted the statements coming in from the opposite camp that Pakistan has a better side than India this time.

“Pakistan always says like this. If India plays with the same potential then we can win over any country,” Gambhir emphasised.

Meanwhile, Gambhir started the fourth Jan Rasoi in Delhi on Saturday.

On Gautam Gambhir Foundation’s Jan Rasoi, the BJP MP said, “I want nobody to sleep empty stomach. With that idea, I am come up with Jan Rasoi. From each centre we are feeding around 4,000 people. I want to open more such centres so that we can feed more needy people.” (ANI)

Australia batsman Pucovski ‘pretty positive’ about his return

Melbourne [Australia] : Victoria coach Chris Rogers on Thursday said Australia opening batter Will Pucovski is “pretty positive” about his return on the field following his latest concussion.
Last week, Pucovski received a knock to his head and is recovering from concussion symptoms. The 23-year-old has suffered from nine concussions and was currently managing his recovery in consultation with Cricket Victoria’s medical staff. Rogers remained optimistic about Pucovski’s recovery and the batter is doing “alright”.
“He sees specialists so they’ll be talking to him about that and obviously, that’s got to play a role at some stage but at the moment, he’s still keen to continue on,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Rogers as saying.
“He’s been through this before, he knows what it’s like. He’s a pretty resilient guy now. If you go through this many setbacks you’ve got to have something about you. He’s going alright. Yesterday when I spoke to him, he seemed pretty positive so that’s all I can say,” he added.
Pucovski had earlier suffered a shoulder subluxation injury in the Sydney Test against India in January and was eventually ruled out of the fourth and final Test.
Rogers said Pucovski has the ability to make a comeback and Australia selectors would definitely consider the opening batter for the Ashes if he hit the “ground running.”
“He’s shown before he can hit the ground running as he did last year with the two 200s, so if he’s good enough to do something like that again then the selectors would definitely have something to consider,” said Roger.
“He’s one of those players there’s an element of class. You know when you throw balls at him that it’s different,” he added.
The young batsman is in contention to open with David Warner in the Ashes later this year but the injuries have kept him out of the field since he made his Test debut against India.

ICC T20 WC, Rd 1: Scotland stun B’desh in Group B

Chris Greaves’ 45-run knock and two-wicket haul helped Scotland stun Bangladesh by six runs in Group B encounter of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup here at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground (Ministry Turf 1) on Sunday.

Muscat [Oman] : Chasing 141, Bangladesh did not get off to an ideal start as Josh Davey dismissed Soumya Sarkar (5) in the second over of the innings. Two overs later, Bradley Wheal removed Liton Das (5) and Bangladesh was reduced to 18/2 in the fourth over. Shakib Al Hasan and Mushfiqur Rahim then got together at the crease and the duo put on 47 runs for the third wicket, but Scotland got the crucial breakthrough of Shakib (20) with Bangladesh still needing 76 more runs for the win. Chris Greaves then dismissed Mushfiqur (38) and Scotland gained complete control over the match.
Afif Hossain and skipper Mahmudullah then came together at the crease and put on 32 runs for the fifth wicket, but Scotland managed to maintain their cool to register a thrilling six-run victory.
Earlier, Mahedi Hasan and Shakib Al Hasan took five wickets among themselves as Bangladesh restricted Scotland to 140/9. Sent into bat, Scotland got off to a bad start as the side lost its skipper Kyle Coetzer (0) in just the third over of the innings. However, George Munsey and Matthew Cross managed to steady the innings and at the end of the powerplay overs, the score read 39/1.
Munsey and Cross put on 40 runs for the second wicket, however, Bangladesh stormed right back into the contest as Mahedi Hasan dismissed both Cross (11) and Munsey (29), reducing Scotland to 46/3 in the 8th over. Shakib Al Hasan then got into the act to dismiss Richie Berrington (2) and Michael Leask (0), reducing Scotland to 52/5 in the 11th over. In the final few overs, Mark Watt and Chris Greaves played knocks of 22 and 45 respectively as Scotland posted a total of more than the run mark.
Earlier in the day, Zeeshan Maqsood’s four-wicket haul was backed up by unbeaten knocks of 73 and 50 by opening batters Jatinder Singh and Aqib Ilyas to help Oman defeat Papua New Guinea by ten wickets.
Brief Scores: Scotland 140/9 (Chris Greaves 45, George Munsey 29, Mahedi Hasan 3-19); Bangladesh 134/7 (Mushfiqur Rahim 38, Mahmudullah 23, Bradley Wheal 3-24).

ICC T20 WC, Rd 1: Zeeshan Maqsood, Jitender Singh star as Oman defeat PNG in Group B

Muscat [Oman] : Zeeshan Maqsood’s four-wicket haul was backed up by unbeaten knocks of 73 and 50 by opening batters Jatinder Singh and Aqib Ilyas to help Oman defeat Papua New Guinea by ten wickets in Group B encounter of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup here at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground (Ministry Turf 1) on Sunday.
Later in the day, Scotland will lock horns against Bangladesh in the same group. Chasing 130, Oman got off to a good start as opening batters Jatinder Singh and Aqib Ilyas put on 46 runs inside the first six overs. Both batters continued with their momentum and at the halfway mark, Oman’s score read 88/0, with the side needing just 42 more runs for the win.
Both batters brought up their 100-run opening stand in the 12th over of the innings. In the end, PNG was not able to take any wickets and Oman cruised to a ten-wicket win with 38 balls to spare.
Earlier, Assad Vala played a knock of 56 but Zeeshan Maqsood’s four-wicket haul helped Oman restrict PNG to 129/9. Sent into bat first, Papua New Guinea got off to the worst start possible as Bilal Khan dismissed opening batter Tony Ura (0) in the very first over. The other opener Lega Siaka (0) also failed to trouble the scores and PNG was reduced to 0/2 in the second over of the innings.
Charles Amini and skipper Assad Vala then retrieved the innings for PNG as the duo put on 81 runs for the third wicket. This partnership helped PNG come back into the contest, however, a proper confusion in the middle helped Oman as the side was able to dismiss Amini (37) via a run-out in the 12th over, reducing PNG to 81/3.
Soon after, Vala (56) also departed as he was sent back to the pavilion by Kaleemullah in the 14th over, and the lower-order was required to take PNG to a respectable score. However, PNG lost its way in the final overs, and the side had to settle for a score of just over the 125-run mark.
Brief Scores: Papua New Guinea 129/9 (Assad Vala 56, Charles Amini 37; Zeeshan Maqsood 4-20); Oman 131/0 (Aqib Ilyas 50*, Jatinder Singh 73*; Simon Atai 0-9).

Shakib overhauls Malinga to become leading wicket-taker in men’s T20Is

Muscat [Oman] : Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan on Sunday became the leading wicket-taker in men’s T20Is.
Shakib achieved the feat in Bangladesh’s ongoing Group B encounter of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup against Scotland here at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground (Ministry Turf 1). The all-rounder returned with figures of 2-17 against Scotland and hence he went past the record of Sri Lanka pacer Lasith Malinga.
Shakib now has 108 wickets from 89 matches in the shortest format.
Malinga had taken 107 wickets from 84 matches while New Zealand’s Tim Southee is at the third number in the list, after taking 99 wickets from 83 matches.
Earlier in the ongoing match against Scotland, Mahmudullah-led Bangladesh won the toss and opted to bowl.

Have no idea regarding coach front, our goal is to win T20 World Cup: Kohli

Dubai [UAE] : India skipper Virat Kohli on Saturday said that he along with head coach Ravi Shastri are proud of creating a culture where everyone in the side wants to be the best version of themselves day in and day out.
Former India skipper Rahul Dravid has agreed to take over as the head coach of the national team from Ravi Shastri. The development took place on the sidelines of the final of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League on Friday night. Speaking to ANI, sources in the know of developments confirmed that the NCA head is ready to take over as the national team coach. “Look, I mean our goal is to win the World Cup. I have no idea regarding what is happening on the coach front, we have not had any detailed discussions with anyone. But winning the T20 World Cup is our goal like any other team. But I think what we have been able to create over the last 5-6 years is beyond titles and beyond tournaments,” said Kohli during Captain’s Call organised by the International Cricket Council (ICC) ahead of the upcoming T20 World Cup.
“We have created a culture which I think will last for a long time where people want to be the best they can be when they enter the team, the fittest they can be. That culture we have driven with utmost passion and honesty which we hope will continue to be the case in the years to come. Winning an ICC title will definitely be a wonderful moment for all of us, it will be an amazing achievement. We are motivated to do so, we will give it our everything,” he added.
Talking about India’s 2007 T20 World Cup triumph, Kohli said: “I would not say that the 2007 T20 World Cup win was unexpected but no one really knew about the tournament, after the title win the emergence of IPL was something that changed the game completely.”
“But that World Cup we fondly remember watching, keenly watching that young team achieving things at the world stage and as I said, we understood the impact of that win few years down the line when T20 cricket became as big as it has. For a young team to achieve what they did was very special, it was inspirational. It gave me more belief that I could perform at the highest level at such a young age,” he added.
India will open its T20 World Cup campaign against Pakistan on October 24 in Dubai. Before that, the side will lock horns against England and Australia in two warm-up fixtures.

Young Saurashtra player Avi Barot dies after suffering cardiac arrest

29-year-old Barot was former India Under-19 captain and a member of the Saurashtra’s Ranji Trophy-winning team in the 2019-20 season.

Saurashtra : Batter Avi Barot, a former India Under-19 captain and a member of the Ranji Trophy winning team in the 2019-20 season, has died after suffering a cardiac arrest at a shockingly young age of 29, the Saurashtra Cricket Association (SCA) said.

The player, who also represented Haryana and Gujarat in his career, died on Friday.

“Everyone at Saurashtra Cricket Association (is) deeply shocked and saddened on (the) very shocking, untimely and extremely sad demise of Avi Barot, remarkable and notable cricketer of Saurashtra.

“He left for heavenly abode in the evening of 15th October 2021 due to severe cardiac arrest,” the SCA stated in a media release issued here.

He was a right-handed batter, who could also bowl off-breaks.

Barot played 38 first-class matches, 38 List A matches and 20 Domestic T20 games. He was a wicket-keeper-batsman and scored 1,547 runs in first-class matches, 1030 runs in list-A games and 717 runs in T20s.

Barot was a part of the Ranji Trophy winning Saurashtra team, which had defeated Bengal in the summit clash. For Saurashtra, he played 21 Ranji Trophy matches, 17 List A matches and 11 domestic T20 games.

Barot was India U-19 captain in 2011 and earlier this year, he grabbed attention with his stupendous 122-run knock in just 53 balls during a Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy match against Goa. SCA President Jaydev Shah condoled Barot’s demise.

“This is absolutely shocking and painful to learn about Avi’s sad demise. He was a great teammate and had great cricketing skills. In all recent domestic matches, he had performed remarkably well.

“He was a very friendly and noble human being. We all at Saurashtra Cricket Association are in deep shock,” said Shah, himself a former Saurashtra captain.

KKR to lock horns against CSK in IPL 2021 final

Venkatesh Iyer and Shubman Gill played knocks of 55 and 46 respectively to follow up Varun Chakravarthy’s two-wicket haul as Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) defeated Delhi Capitals by three wickets in Qualifier 2 of their Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 encounter here at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.

Sharjah [UAE], October 13 : As a result, KKR will now lock horns against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the IPL 2021 final on Friday at the Dubai International Stadium. Chasing 136, KKR got off to a solid start as openers Venkatesh Iyer and Shubman Gill put on 51 runs inside the first six overs. Both batters kept on scoring runs steadily and at the halfway mark, KKR’s score read 76/0, still needing 60 more runs for the win.
Iyer continued with his brilliant form and he brought up his half-century in the 12th over of the innings. It was Kagiso Rabada who finally ended Iyer’s (55) innings with KKR still 40 runs away from the target.
DC was able to take the wickets of Gill (46), Nitish Rana (13), Dinesh Karthik (0), Eoin Morgan (0), Shakib Al Hasan (0), and Sunil Narine (0) in a hurry, but in the end, KKR managed to get score 7 runs off the final over to register a win.
Earlier, Varun Chakravarthy returned with figures of 2-26 as KKR restricted Delhi Capitals to 135/5. Sent into bat first, Delhi Capitals got off to a steady start as openers Prithvi Shaw and Shikhar Dhawan put on 32 runs for the first wicket, but this stand was finally broken in the 5th over by Varun Chakravarthy as he outclassed Shaw (18). After the end of the first six overs, Delhi Capitals’ score read 38/1.
Marcus Stoinis came out to bat at number three and along with Dhawan, the duo put on 39 runs for the second wicket. However, as soon as Delhi started to gain an upper hand, KKR got the breakthrough of Stoinis (18) as Shivam Mavi dismissed the right-handed batter. Soon after, the set batter Dhawan (36) was sent back to the pavilion by Chakravarthy, and Delhi was reduced to 83/3 in the 15th over.
KKR managed to maintain a stranglehold over DC batters and this further resulted in the dismissal of skipper Rishabh Pant (6) and the task of reaching a competitive score rested on the shoulders of Shreyas Iyer and Shimron Hetmyer. In the final three overs, Delhi Capitals managed to score 36 more runs and as a result, the side posted a score of more than the 130-run mark.
Brief Scores: Delhi Capitals 135/5 (Shikhar Dhawan 36, Shreyas Iyer 30*; Varun Chakravarthy 2-26) vs KKR 136/7 (Venkatesh Iyer 55, Shubman Gill 46; Kagiso Rabada 2-23). (ANI)

Team India’s new jersey best way to celebrate fans’ excitement for T20 World Cup : Ganguly

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly on Wednesday said the best way to celebrate fans’ excitement and energy is through the jersey for the Indian men’s team launched ahead of the T20 World Cup.

New Delhi [India], October 13 : BCCI along with MPL Sports, the official kit sponsor of the Indian Men’s, Women’s, and Under-19 Cricket Team unveiled the official jersey of the Indian team for 2021 on Wednesday. The cheers of the billion-plus fans of the team at home and abroad have provided inspiration for the jersey that the players will don at the upcoming T20 World Cup.
This is the first time in the history of Indian cricket that fans have been memorialised on a jersey. It carries their chants and cheers from iconic past matches, transformed into unique soundwave patterns. As much as the shirt, aptly called the “Billion Cheers Jersey,” honours their unwavering support, it also serves as a beacon of inspiration and encouragement for Team India to give their best on the field. The jersey comes in shades of Prussian blue and royal blue offering a bold and distinct look befitting champions.

Sourav Ganguly, President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said, “The Indian cricket team enjoys support not just in India but around the world, and there’s no better way to celebrate their excitement and energy than through this jersey. This will undoubtedly provide the team with the much-needed enthusiastic support in their quest to emerge as the T20 champions of the world. We are also pleased to see that MPL Sports continues to deliver merchandise that is widely affordable and accessible.”
Jay Shah, Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), stated, “We are excited to unveil the official jersey today and make it available for supporters ahead of the T20 games in partnership with MPL Sports. The story behind the jersey is the story of every Indian cricket fan. We are sure that wearing this will be a matter of great pride for both the team and supporters alike.”
Virat Kohli, Captain of the Indian National Cricket Team, said the design of the jersey is quite striking.
“We have immense respect for our fans and this makes the official jersey even more special. The design is quite striking and distinct from the ones we have sported in the past while also delivering on comfort and performance to enable us to give our best. All of us are thrilled to don the new colours, show our game and make our billion-plus fans proud,” he said.

Lanka Premier League to commence on December 5

Colombo [Sri Lanka], October 13 : The Lanka Premier League 2021 will commence on December 5 at the RPICS, Colombo, with the inaugural game scheduled to be played between Galle and Jaffna.
The first round of the tournament, which will consist of 20 games will be played at the RPICS, Colombo before it moves into MRICS, Hambantota to proceed with the final round games. The finals of the League will be played on the December 23, 2021 at the MRICS, Hambantota, whilst this year’s tournament has December 24, as a ‘Reserve Day’ dedicated for the finals.
The Lanka Premier League 2021, which is Sri Lanka’s topmost domestic tournament, with an international flavor, will consist of 24 games and will see the participation of topmost domestic and international cricketers.
The Final Round Games will see the top two teams in the points table playing the qualifier 1, whilst the 3rd and 4th placed teams on the table playing in the ‘eliminator.’
The winner of ‘qualifier 1’ will directly go into the finals, whilst the loser of the ‘qualifier 1’ will play against the winner of the ‘eliminator’ in the ‘qualifier 2’, and the winner of that game will go into the finals

Russell has Grade 2 hamstring tear, reveals Eoin Morgan : IPL 2021

Sharjah [UAE] : Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) skipper Eoin Morgan revealed that Andre Russell has a Grade 2 hamstring tear and the all-rounder is working hard with the medical team to be fully fit for Qualifier 2 against Delhi Capitals on Wednesday.
Sunil Narine stole the show as KKR beat RCB in Eliminator in Sharjah on Monday. After the match, Morgan said KKR will take a decision on Russell’s availability on how the all-rounder presents himself on Tuesday. “Andre has a Grade 2 hamstring tear, and it’s only been a couple of weeks since that injury. He has worked incredibly hard along with our medical team with intensive rehabilitation to try and get himself back on the park,” Morgan said in the post-match press conference.
“We only have 48 hours before the next game. So we’ll have to take that decision (on whether he is fit to play) based on how he presents himself tomorrow (Tuesday) and the next day,” he added.
KKR had won two games in the IPL 2021 during the first half but the side came back with strong performances in the UAE leg to qualify for the playoffs.
“In the first phase of the tournament, we were still trying to implement Buzz’s (Brendon McCullum) mantra of trying to play positive, aggressive cricket. In the first phase it didn’t quite happen,” said Morgan.
“Throughout this second phase, people have turned up with a different motivation and drive to try and play the aggressive brand of cricket.”
“Our bowlers have shown us the way – how to be aggressive with the ball in trying to take wickets and identifying when to hold back and be a little bit more defensive. That’s led the way with our batting as well,” he signed off.

T20 WC: Hardik and boys to enter Team India hotel today

New Delhi [India]: The Mumbai Indians boys led by Rohit Sharma will enter the Indian team hotel in Dubai on Tuesday. And as expected, all eyes will be on all-rounder Hardik Pandya as the team management would look to assess his progress with the team’s opening T20 World Cup game against arch-rivals Pakistan two weeks away.

Speaking to ANI, sources in the team management confirmed the MI boys will be moving into Th8 Palm on Tuesday. “Rohit and boys are coming in today. It would obviously be in focus how Hardik is progressing and that is no rocket science. But he should be good to go for the showpiece event,” the source said.
Asked if Hardik could actually go in as a finisher, the source said: “Well, that call obviously needs to be taken by the team management and with MS Dhoni coming in as mentor, you do know the best call will be taken. But yes, you must realise the lack of big-match experience in the Indian middle-order, especially when it comes to handling high-voltage clashes like India-Pakistan.”

Interestingly, Hardik has done well against Pakistan not just in the 2017 Champions Trophy, but also in the 2019 World Cup in England. While he finished with an outstanding 76 off 43 balls in the final of the Champions Trophy against Pakistan, he scored a quickfire 26 off 19 balls and then picked two wickets with the ball in the World Cup game.

Sources in the team believe even though his bowling is a worry at the moment, he is the X-factor who can turn big games with the bat as well. “You are born with it. And Hardik is undoubtedly an X-factor, be it with the ball as we saw against Bangladesh in the last T20 World Cup, or with the bat as we have seen a number of times. You want such players in big-ticket events because they can win you games out of nowhere. If you ask me, he will be in the team and the physio will try and make him work his way to the bowling crease,” the source pointed.

The T20 World Cup will begin with the Round 1 Group B encounter between hosts Oman and Papua New Guinea on October 17, with Scotland and Bangladesh, the other teams in Group B, clashing in the evening match. Ireland, Netherlands, Sri Lanka, and Namibia — making up Group A — will be in action in Abu Dhabi the next day, with Round 1 matches running till October 22.

The top two teams in each group will proceed to the Super 12 stage of the tournament, beginning on October 23. The first semi-final will be held in Abu Dhabi on November 10. The second semi-final will be hosted by Dubai on November 11. Both semi-finals have reserve days. The marquee clash of the tournament will take place in Dubai on November 14, Sunday, with Monday acting as the reserve day for the final. (ANI)

No one would ‘dare do that to India’, says Pakistan PM over cancellation of NZ, England cricket tours

Islamabad [Pakistan]: Stating over the cancellation of New Zealand and England cricket tours to Pakistan, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that no one would “dare do that to India” due to the power and financial resources” of their cricket board, reported local media.

In an interview with Middle East Eye on Monday, Khan said: “No one would dare do that to India due to the power and financial resources of the Indian cricket board”, according to Dawn.
He also emphasised that the England and New Zealand cricket teams had let themselves down by canceling the tours.

Underlining that he has observed Pakistan-England cricket ties for years, Khan said: “I think there is still this feeling in England that they do a great favour by playing for countries like Pakistan.”

New Zealand cricket team in September abandoned its tour of Pakistan following its government’s security alert in September. And a few days later on September 20, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced that they have withdrawn from the Pakistan tour in October.

NZC said in a statement, “However, following an escalation in the New Zealand Government threat levels for Pakistan, and advice from NZC security advisors on the ground, it has been decided the BLACKCAPS will not continue with the tour.”

NZC chief executive David White said it was simply not possible to continue with the tour given the advice he was receiving.

New Zealand was slated to play their first match on Pakistan soil since 2003.

Earlier this year, ECB had agreed to play two additional T20 World Cup warm-up games in Pakistan in October, adding a short women’s tour with double headers alongside the men’s games.

As per the official statement from the ECB board, “The mental and physical well-being of England’s players and support staff remains the highest priority of ECB.”

“We know there are increasing concerns about travelling to the region and believe that going ahead will add further pressure to a playing group who have already coped with a long period of operating in restricted Covid environments,” the statement added. (ANI)

IPL 2021: Shubman Gill hits fifty as KKR post 171/4 against Rajasthan Royals

Sharjah [UAE] : Shubman Gill smashed his second successive half-century as Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) scored 171/4 against Rajasthan Royals in their Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter here at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Thursday.
This is also the highest score at Sharjah in the IPL 2021. It was a combined batting effort by KKR batsmen after Gill and Venkatesh Iyer gave the side a decent start. Put into bat, KKR got off to a decent start as both openers Shubman Gill and Venkatesh Iyer carefully carried the team’s innings. KKR didn’t lose a wicket but managed only 34 runs in the powerplay
At the halfway stage KKR were on 69 without losing a wicket. Rajasthan Royals got the first breakthrough went Rahul Tewatia removed Venkatesh in the 11th over.
KKR also lost Nitish Rana but Gill kept his side moving along as they went past the 100-run mark. Gill was dimissed soon after completing his fifty while Chetan Sakariya cleaned Rahul Tripathi in the 18th over.
Sakariya bowled a perfect 18th over as he gave away just three runs but Eoin Morgan and Dinesh Karthik scored 23 in the last two as KKR reached 171-4 in the allotted 20 overs.
Brief Scores: KKR 171/4 (Shubman Gill 56, Venkatesh Iyer 38; Rahul Tewatia 1-11) vs Rajasthan Royals

Faf du Plessis, Andre Russell confirmed as icon players for Abu Dhabi T10 League

Abu Dhabi [UAE] : The fastest and the most entertaining format of cricket – the Abu Dhabi T10 League is in readiness to enthral the world in yet another season in November-December this year.
The biggest cricket stars from around the globe, including but notwithstanding Faf du Plessis, Andre Russell, Dwayne Bravo, Eoin Morgan, Jason Roy, Chris Gayle will feature in the fifth season of the one-of-a-kind cricket extravaganza, which will be held from November 19 – December 4 2021. With the Abu Dhabi T10 League players draft set to be held, a whopping 1186 players from 26 cricketing nations have put their hands up to have an opportunity to play in one of the most exciting cricket leagues in the world.
With a monument of runs and experience in his career, former South Africa captain Faf du Plessis will take centre stage as the icon player for the Bangla Tigers. The stylish right-hand batsman has proved his firepower with over 6,500 runs in his T20 career.
With over 500 sixes to his name in T20s, the West Indian superstar Andre Russell will feature as the icon player of the Deccan Gladiators. The hard-hitting all-rounder has racked up more than 6,000 runs and 300 wickets in T20s.
Speaking about the power-packed icon player line-up for season 5 of the Abu Dhabi T10 League, Shaji Ul Mulk, Chairman, T10 Sports Management said, “We are absolutely thrilled to have these star players feature as the icon players in the Abu Dhabi T10 League. The league is nothing without its players and fans and therefore we couldn’t be more delighted about welcoming some of the biggest cricket stars to the Abu Dhabi T10 League once again.”
“We are absolutely overwhelmed to see the number of cricketers registering for the Abu Dhabi T10 League Players Draft. The talent pool of the Abu Dhabi T10 League grows manifold with each season.”
Meanwhile, aggressive wicketkeeper-batsman Nicholas Pooran is primed to set the stage on fire as the icon player for the Maratha Arabians. The West Indian has scored over 3,700 runs in T20 cricket along with taking 108 catches and effecting 17 stumpings.
With exuberant hitting and wicket-taking abilities, Liam Livingstone will headline Team Abu Dhabi as its icon player for this season. The English all-rounder has smashed over 3,900 runs and picked up over 50 wickets in T20 cricket.
The hard-hitting opening batsman Jason Roy is all set to show his ball-striking prowess as the icon player of the Delhi Bulls. The Englishman has smacked over 6,600 runs in his T20 career with a strike rate of well over 140.
Experienced campaigner Chris Jordan, who has taken over 250 wickets in his T20 career, will feature as the icon player of the Northern Warriors. The English fast bowler has recorded an impressive bowling average of 27.45 in 243 T20 matches.
The full squads of each of the franchises will be confirmed following the Abu Dhabi T10 League Players Draft on 7 October 2021.

Gavaskar questions Suryakumar and Ishan’s shot selection

Mumbai Indians batsmen Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan have failed to rise to the challenge in the second leg of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League in the UAE. Not only has their form hurt MI, but also questions have been raised on whether they deserve to be a part of India’s T20 World Cup squad for the showpiece event.

New Delhi [India], October 5 : Speaking on Star Sports show Cricket Connected, legend Sunil Gavaskar said: “I think it looks to me like, Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan have just relaxed a little bit after getting the India cap. They might not have, but some of the shots they are playing — it looks like they are trying to play these big shots just because they are India players. “Sometimes what happens is, you gotta give yourself a little bit of time, and you gotta get your shot selection right. And I think that is where they have missed this time around, where their shot selection has not been exactly correct, and that’s why they’ve got out cheaply.”
Throwing light on all-rounder Hardik Pandya not bowling in the IPL, the former India skipper said it is a big blow not just for the franchise, but also for the national team.
“Hardik Pandya, not bowling is a big blow, not just for Mumbai Indians, but for India as well, because he was taken in the team as an all-rounder. And if you are in the team, batting at No.6 or No.7, and you’re not able to bowl, then it makes it difficult for the captain. He doesn’t get the flexibility and option, that is so required for somebody batting at No.6 or 7 like an all-rounder.”
The Indian national selectors on September 8 picked the squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup to be hosted by the BCCI in UAE and Oman. In a surprise move, R Ashwin was included in the team which will begin its campaign in the showpiece event against arch-rivals Pakistan. Ashwin had last played a T20I against West Indies in July 2017. Yuzvendra Chahal missed out while MS Dhoni will be the mentor of the team.
Interestingly, RCB spinner Chahal has had a brilliant outing in UAE and has been one of the top bowlers in the second leg of the IPL.

My best in Test cricket is still to come; in my eyes we won Eng series 2-1: Rohit Sharma

New Delhi [India] : Indian men’s cricket team opener Rohit Sharma stated that his best is yet to come in Test format after having a phenomenal tour of England.
Rohit was the highest-scoring Indian as he ended up with 368 runs in four Tests at an average of 52.57 with one hundred and two fifties. The century in the fourth Test at Kennington Oval was also Rohit’s maiden overseas triple-figure mark. “England tour was a good one for me. I won’t call it my best, because my best in Test cricket is still to come,” Rohit said in a virtual press conference organised by Adidas. Leading sportswear giant Adidas launched its ‘Impossible is Nothing’ campaign through the voice of athletes such as Rohit, Manpreet Singh, Mirabai Chanu, Simranjeet Kaur and Lovlina Borgohain.
Notably, opener Rohit was only behind England captain Joe Root in runs, who scored 564 runs in the four Tests. “I am really happy with how I batted on that tour. I will now look to take that forward and build on that success in Test cricket,” he added.
While he had a brilliant series, there was a lot of debate after the final Test had to be called off as there was a COVID-19 scare in the Indian camp. While India will play a Test on the next tour, it is yet to be decided whether it will be the continuation of the recent series or a one-off Test. Rohit feels the series is done and India has won 2-1.
“In my eyes, we have won the series (2-1). I don’t know what will happen with the final Test of the series yet — whether we will play it as a one-off Test or the series will be decided as it is. We don’t have any clarity on that yet,” the Indian opener pointed.

IPL 2021: Will bowl soon, efforts are on, says Hardik Pandya

Ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL) match against Delhi Capitals, Mumbai Indians all-rounder Hardik Pandya gave a positive update on his return to the bowling crease, saying he would do it soon.

Sharjah [UAE], October 2 : “Runs are important and especially when your team wins. It was important for my personal confidence but to score for the team was important. We have to assess the wicket and adapt on the given time. The plans have to be simple and win over obstacles ball-by-ball. There’s no option, but one thing is that these situations bring out the best in you. We realise it is a do-or-die game, but we are just focusing on the controllabes,” Hardik told host broadcaster Star Sports before the game against DC. Commenting on hitting the bowling crease, he said: “Aayega jaldi. Koshish poori hai (I will bowl soon. Efforts are on).”
Mumbai Indians (MI) head coach Mahela Jayawardene on Friday had said Hardik might struggle with the bat if he pushes too hard to bowl in the ongoing IPL.
Notably, ever since Hardik underwent back surgery, he has not been bowling regularly.
“Because he hasn’t bowled since Sri Lanka, I think what we are trying to do is what’s best for Hardik going forward. We are talking to Indian management, and make sure sooner he feels comfortable, we get him into his bowling programme and prepare him,” said Jayawardene in a pre-match press conference on Friday. “(If Hardik can bowl in IPL) We have to look on a daily basis and evaluate and see how he progresses.”
Delhi Capitals had last suffered a loss against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) while Mumbai Indians registered a win over Punjab Kings in their respective previous games. Rishabh Pant-led Delhi Capitals is at the second spot in the points table while Mumbai Indians is in sixth place.

IPL 2021: Punjab Kings win toss, opt to bowl first against KKR

Dubai [UAE] : Punjab Kings won the toss and opted to bowl first against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in their Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter here at the Dubai International Stadium on Friday.
Speaking at the toss, Punjab Kings skipper KL Rahul said, “Tricky to bat first here maybe. You don’t know if 150 will be good or 180. So better to ask the opposition to set that up. Our bowlers have done well in all three games. Batting hasn’t fired as well, but opportunity to score big runs today. Hopefully, we don’t have to score big runs by restricting them. Gayle has left, so Fabian Allen comes in. Mayank Agarwal replaces Mandeep. Shahrukh Khan in for Harpreet Brar.” Meanwhile, KKR skipper Eoin Morgan said, “Results on this ground haven’t been dictated by the toss. In the second phase teams that have played well have got the result. Tim Seifert replaces Lockie Ferguson. Shivam Mavi replaces Sandeep Warrier. Lockie and Russell are being monitored day by day. They have to rehab extremely well in order to be fit. It is a used wicket today but doesn’t necessarily look that bad. Should be a good cricket wicket.”
KKR have a better head-to-head record over Punjab Kings and also won the previous encounter between the two sides in 2021. KL Rahul would look to break the jinx in the must-win match.
Punjab Kings Playing XI: KL Rahul(w/c), Mayank Agarwal, Aiden Markram, Nicholas Pooran, Shahrukh Khan, Deepak Hooda, Fabian Allen, Nathan Ellis, Mohammed Shami, Ravi Bishnoi, Arshdeep Singh.
KKR Playing XI: Eoin Morgan(c), Shubman Gill, Venkatesh Iyer, Rahul Tripathi, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik(w), Tim Seifert, Sunil Narine, Shivam Mavi, Tim Southee, Varun Chakaravarthy.

“Rohit as captain and Rahul, Pant as Team India future vice-captains”

Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar believes that KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant can be groomed as vice-captains in the shortest format of the game by the Team India management.

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], September 29 : Gavaskar also said that since Kohli has announced to step down as the T20I skipper after the upcoming World Cup, Rohit Sharma would be an ideal candidate to lead the team in the next World Cup. “I think Rohit Sharma for the next two World Cups because they are back-to-back, one starting in a month and another exactly a year from now. So clearly, yes, you don’t want to change too many captains at this particular stage. Rohit Sharma would definitely be my choice for the captaincy of the Indian team for both these T20 World Cups. And then, I’m looking at KL Rahul as the vice-captain,” said Gavaskar on Star Sports’ show ‘Cricket Connected’.
“I would also keep Rishabh Pant in mind because he has been really impressive in the way he has led a star-studded Delhi Capitals team and the bowling changes that he has been making in the T20 format, using Anrich Nortje and Kagiso Rabada in such a clever manner that actually shows a street-smart captain, and you always want a street-smart captain who can read situations and act immediately. So yes, Rahul and Pant are the two guys I would look at as vice captains,” he added.
Earlier, Kohli decided to step down from T20I captaincy after the ICC T20 World Cup in November this year. Kohli explained his decision to leave the T20I captaincy in a statement on social media. The India skipper said he needs to give himself space in order to play all three formats for the country.
“I have been fortunate enough to not only represent India but also lead the Indian Cricket Team to my utmost capability. I thank everyone who has supported me in my journey as the Captain of the Indian Cricket Team,” Kohli had said in a statement.
“I couldn’t have done it without them — the boys, the support staff, the selection committee, my coaches, and each and every Indian who prayed for us to win. Understanding workload is a very important thing and considering my immense workload over the last 8-9 years playing all 3 formats and captaining regularly for last 5-6 years, I feel I need to give myself space to be fully ready to lead the Indian team in Test and ODI Cricket. I have given everything to the Team during my time as T20 Captain and I will continue to do so for the T20 Team as a batsman moving forward,” he added.

Moeen Ali has done some wonderful things in Test cricket, says Joe Root

London [UK] : England men’s Test cricket team captain Joe Root lavished praise on Moeen Ali after the all-rounder announced his retirement from the longest format of the game on Monday.
England men’s all-rounder decided to call time on his Test match career. Ali, 34, made his Test debut back in 2014 and went on to represent England in 64 Test matches. He took 195 Test wickets including 5 five-wicket hauls and scored five-Test match centuries during his career. Root captained Moeen in 27 of his 64 Tests. “First and foremost, it goes without saying that Mo’s career speaks for itself and what he has achieved,” Root said during the virtual press conference organised by the PCA, as per ESPN Cricinfo.
“He’s done some wonderful things in Test cricket. He’s been one of the great guys to play alongside. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed sharing that dressing room with him and we’ve had so many wonderful memories, on the field and off the field,” he added.
The left-handed batsman is currently in the UAE, playing for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 season.

Aus W vs Ind W, 2nd ODI: Smriti Mandhana hits fluent 86 as visitors post 274/7

Mackay [Australia]: Buoyed by Smriti Mandhana’s 94-ball 86 and a quickfire 28 by Jhulan Goswami, India managed to score a challenging 274/7 in their 50 overs against Australia in the second ODI of the three-match series at the Ray Mitchell Oval, Harrup Park, on Friday.
Mandhana showed class at the top as she looked all set to reach the three-figure mark. While the opener fell short by 14 runs, a 50-ball 44 by Richa Ghosh and a late flourish from Jhulan and Pooja Vastrakar (29 off 37 balls) helped India reach a total they will look to defend with confidence. Earlier, Australia skipper Meg Lanning won the toss and elected to field. India openers Mandhana and Shafali Verma got off to a quality start as they put on 68/0 in the first 10 overs. While Shafali is known to be the aggressor, it was Mandhana who looked to take on the Australian bowlers as he raced to 44 off 40 balls in the first 10.
Just when it looked like India would further strengthen the position at the top, Molineux sent Shafali packing for 22 against the run of play in the 12th over. Skipper Mithali Raj was unlucky as there was huge mix-up that saw her caught short of her crease and she had to walk back to the pavilion for a 23-ball 8.
But Mandhana combined with the other batters to ensure that India didn’t fall short of the 250-run mark in the second game. For Australia, while Tahlia McGrath finished with figures of 3/45, Sophie Molineux picked two for 28.
Brief Scores: India 274/7 (Mandhana 86; Tahlia 3/45) vs Australia

Shahid Afridi arrives in Kathmandu to play EPL

Kathmandu : Former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi on Thursday arrived in Nepal capital Kathmandu to play in the Everest Premier League (EPL) starting from Saturday.

Upon his arrival, Afridi was welcomed by Pakistan Embassy Officials at the airport despite his visit being a professional and commercial one. The former team captain is
playing for Kathmandu Kings XI in the fourth edition of the EPL starting on Saturday at the Tribhuvan Cricket Ground.

“I am gonna play two matches because I am going back after that. I have some work as well as I am running a foundation and have some initiatives,” Shahid Afridi told reporters upon his arrival.

Kings XI will compete with Lalitpur Patriots in the inaugural match. The Kings XI under the captaincy of Sandeep Lamichhane has Amit Shrestha, Subash Khakurel, Raju Rijal, Sher Malla, Siddhant Lohani, Mohammad Samsad Sheikh, Dipendra Rawat, Jitendra Mukhiya, Ashok Chand, Amar Singh Rautela and Gulshan Jha in the team.

Earlier, Afridi had questioned New Zealand’s decision to abandon the tour of Pakistan due to the New Zealand government’s security alert. He went on to ask if NZC realised the impact of such a decision.

“On a HOAX threat you have called-off the tour despite all assurances!! @BLACKCAPSdo you understand the IMPACT of your decision?” Afridi tweeted. (ANI)

IPL 2021: De Kock’s 55-run knock help MI post 155/6 against KKR

Abu Dhabi [UAE]: Quinton de Kock’s 55-run knock helped Mumbai Indians post 155/6 against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in an Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter here at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Thursday.

Sent into bat, Mumbai Indians got off to a good start as opening batters Rohit Sharma and Quinton de Kock put on 56 runs inside the first six overs. Rohit and de Kock eventually put on 78 runs for the opening wicket, and this stand was finally broken by Sunil Narine in the 10th over as he dismissed Rohit (33).
Suryakumar Yadav who came out to bat at number three failed to leave a mark as he scored just five runs. He was sent back to the pavilion by Prasidh Krishna. Two overs later, de Kock (55) was also dismissed and Mumbai Indians was reduced to 106/3 in the 15th over.

Ishan Kishan (14) might have hit a long six off the bowling of Andre Russell, but he perished in the next over off the bowling of Lockie Ferguson. In the end, Kieron Pollard scored 21 runs from 15 balls to take Mumbai’s score past the 150-run mark.

Brief Scores: Mumbai Indians 155/6 (Quinton de Kock 55, Rohit Sharma 33; Lockie Ferguson 2-27) vs KKR. (ANI)

Amitabh Bachchan On Cricket Practice During ‘Mr. Natwarlal’ Shoot: ‘Bat Felt Small’

With the start of the second phase of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, cricket fever is rising, and many, including megastar Amitabh Bachchan, have been affected.

On Thursday, Big B took a stroll down memory lane and recalled playing cricket during the shoot of his film ‘Mr. Natwarlal’ in Kashmir years ago. He also shared a black and white picture in which he can be seen holding a cricket bat and stated how the bat felt way too small.

“Cricket on location .. while the shot is getting ready… Mr Natwarlal shoot in Kashmir ??? I think .. Balla zara chota padh gaya (the bat was a little small),” he captioned the post.

The image has left netizens in splits.
“Hahahha that balla,” a fan commented.
“Nice shot sir,” another user wrote adding a laughing emoji to his comment.

Meanwhile, on the work front, Amitabh will be seen in ‘Good Bye’, ‘Brahmastra’, and ‘The Intern’ remake.

MCC announces amendment to Laws of the Game, to use gender-neutral term “batters” instead of batsmen

London [UK]: The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) on Wednesday announced amendments to the laws of the game to use the gender-neutral term ‘batter’ and ‘batters’ rather than ‘batsman’ or ‘batsmen’.
These changes have been approved by the MCC Committee, following initial discussion by the club’s specialist Laws sub-committee. “MCC believes that the use of gender-neutral terminology helps reinforce cricket’s status as an inclusive game for all. The amendments are a natural evolution from work already undertaken in this area as well as an essential part of MCC’s global responsibility to the sport,” read an official statement.
The changes are effective immediately and updates have been made to the Laws of Cricket published at A number of Governing Bodies and media organisations are already using the term “batter” in their Playing Conditions and reporting. The MCC expects and encourages others to adopt the updated terminology following Wednesday’s announcement of the change to the Laws.
At the time of the last redraft in 2017, it was agreed, following consultation with the International Cricket Council (ICC) and key figures within women’s cricket, that the terminology would remain as “batsman” and “batsmen” within the Laws of the game.
The changes announced reflect the wider usage of the terms “batter” and “batters” which has occurred in cricketing circles in the intervening period. The move to “batter” is a natural progression, aligning with the terms of bowlers and fielders that already sit within the Laws.
Women’s cricket has enjoyed unprecedented growth at all levels around the world in the same period. England’s victory over India in the 2017 World Cup Final took place in front of a capacity crowd at Lord’s. A record international crowd saw Australia defeat India in the T20 World Cup Final in Melbourne three years later and earlier this year, Lord’s broke the record for a domestic women’s match as 17,116 watched Oval Invincibles defeat Southern Brave.
Jamie Cox, Assistant Secretary (Cricket and Operations) at MCC said: “MCC believes in cricket being a game for all and this move recognises the changing landscape of the game in modern times.”
“Use of the term “batter” is a natural evolution in our shared cricketing language and the terminology has already been adopted by many of those involved in the sport. It is the right time for this adjustment to be recognised formally and we are delighted, as the Guardians of the Laws, to announce these changes today,” he added.

Cricketers who participated in 2019-20 domestic season will get 50 per cent additional match fee

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Apex Council met on Monday and one of the major points to be discussed was the compensation package that will be handed to domestic cricketers after the Indian domestic calendar was impacted in the 2020-2021 seasons due to COVID-19. Secretary Jay Shah announced that cricketers who participated in 2019-20 domestic season will get 50 per cent additional match fee as compensation.

New Delhi [India], September 20 : Taking to Twitter, he wrote: “Cricketers who participated in 2019-20 Domestic Season will get 50 per cent additional match fee as compensation for season 2020-21 lost due to COVID-19 situation #BCCIApexCouncil.” In another major decision, it was decided that there will be a hike in match fee of domestic cricketers.

“I am pleased to announce the hike in match fee for domestic cricketers. Seniors – INR 60,000 (above 40 matches). Under 23- INR 25,000, Under 19 – INR 20,000 #BCCIApexCouncil.”
The working committee formed by the BCCI to look into the compensation package of 50 per cent of the total match fee. The committee comprised of former India skipper Mohammed Azharuddin, Santosh Menon, Jaydev Shah, Yudhvir Singh, Rohan Jaitley, Avishek Dalmiya, and Devajit Saikia.

IPL 2021: Tournament only getting better, learning never stops for me, says Kohli

Dubai [UAE]: Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) skipper Virat Kohli has said that the Indian Premier League (IPL) is only getting better with each passion season and as a result, it is a big motivation for him to keep improving his game.

RCB will resume their IPL 2021 campaign later today against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
“The IPL is only getting better so what drives me is to keep getting better as a cricketer and individual. Getting a chance to play with world-class cricketers every year is a great learning curve for me. Sport finishes at some stage, but learning never stops and I totally look to keep stepping up and improving my game every year because the IPL is only getting better,” said Kohli in a video posted on the official YouTube channel of RCB.

The match against KKR will be Kohli’s 200th game in the IPL. Talking about his journey with RCB, Kohli said: “Again, you think of these things, you look back at the journey and you feel grateful that you have been able to play for one franchise for so long. It is loyality that has been very special to me and it has been a very strong bond. Mutual respect and love, care, something that I will cherish for the rest of my life.”

When asked about the rivalry with KKR, Kohli said: “Like any side in the competition, KKR is a very strong side. We need to be at the top of our game, we have played well against them in the last couple of seasons and something we want to continue going ahead as well. We have some good memories and momentum but it does not mean we do not start with the same intent.”

Kohli on Sunday had announced that he will step down as the captain of RCB after the completion of the 2021 edition of the IPL. Kohli, one of the most decorated players of the franchise, will continue to be part of the RCB squad.

“It has been a great and inspiring journey, captaining a talented bunch of players in the RCB squad. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the RCB management, coaches, support staff, players, and the entire RCB family, who have been instrumental in the growth of the franchise over the years. It wasn’t an easy decision but one that has been well thought of and in the best interest of this wonderful franchise,” he said in an official statement.

“The RCB family remains close to my heart as we continue to strive to achieve excellence. As I have mentioned previously in many occasions, I will only play for RCB until my retirement from the game of cricket,” he added. (ANI)

Pak minster claims ‘conspiracy’ behind the cancellation of NZ cricket tour

Pakistan Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has claimed that there is a “conspiracy” behind the cancellation of New Zealand’s cricket tour to Pakistan.

Islamabad [Pakistan], September 18 : New Zealand, who were set to play their first match on Pakistan soil since 2003, on Friday informed that they are abandoning their tour following a government security alert. The side was to play Pakistan on Friday in the first of three ODIs in Rawalpindi, before moving to Lahore for a five-match T20 series.
“However, following an escalation in the New Zealand Government threat levels for Pakistan, and advice from NZC security advisors on the ground, it has been decided the BLACKCAPS will not continue with the tour,” NZC said in a statement.
During a presser in Islamabad on Friday, Rashid Ahmed refused to name the country responsible for the conspiracy, Dawn newspaper reported. However, he termed the cancellation “an attempt to damage our efforts for peace in the region”.
The minister said the New Zealand team’s security incharge spoke to government officials and informed them of a threat. When the Pakistani officials asked for details, the NZ security in charge “did not have any”, Ahmed added.
Reacting to the cancellation, newly-elected Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Ramiz Raja lashed out at New Zealand Cricket (NZC) for taking a ‘unilateral approach’ on security threat.
“Crazy day it has been! Feel so sorry for the fans and our players. Walking out of the tour by taking a unilateral approach on a security threat is very frustrating. Especially when it’s not shared!! Which world is NZ living in??NZ will hear us at ICC,” Raja tweeted.
Former Pakistan Cricketers Shoaib Akhtar and Shahid Afridi also came down heavily on New Zealand for abandoning their tour of Pakistan. Shoaib said the team just killed Pakistan cricket.

New Zealand just killed Pakistan cricket: Shoaib Akhtar

Rawalpindi [Pakistan], September 17 : Former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar on Friday came down heavily on New Zealand for abandoning their tour of Pakistan and said the team just killed Pakistan cricket.
Taking to Twitter, Akhtar wrote: “NZ just killed Pakistan cricket.” He went on to add: “Following points for New Zealand to remember: 9 Pakistanis were killed in the Christchurch attack. Pakistan stood strong with New Zealand. Pakistan toured New Zealand in the worst of Covid circumstances regardless of the crude treatment by NZ authorities on that tour.
“This was just an unverified threat, it could have been discussed. Prime Minister Imran Khan personally spoke to his NZ counterpart and assured but it was still refused. Pakistan has safely hosted South Africa, Bangladesh, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe & PSL.”
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan spoke to New Zealand counterpart Jacinda Ardern on Friday before Blackcaps announced that they are abandoning their tour of Pakistan. Imran Khan assured Ardern that Pakistan has one of the best intelligence systems in the world and that no security threat of any kind exists for the visiting team but New Zealand Cricket (NZC) still decided to return home after the NZ government security alert.
New Zealand was slated to play their first match on Pakistan soil since 2003. The side was to play Pakistan on Friday in the first of three ODIs in Rawalpindi, before moving to Lahore for a five-match T20 series.
NZC said it will not comment on the details of the security threat nor the updated arrangements for the departing squad.

You have been champion cricketer: Rohit as Malinga retires

India vice-captain Rohit Sharma labelled Lasith Malinga as a ‘champion cricketer’ as the Sri Lankan pacer announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.

“Mali, you have been a champion cricketer. Well done on your wonderful career. Best wishes ahead,” tweeted Rohit. Rohit and Malinga had shared the dressing room for Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Mumbai Indians. Suryakumar Yadav also wished Malinga luck for future endeavours.
“Congratulations on such an outstanding career, filled with glory @ninety9sl. Wish you all the happiness and success as you enter this new chapter. #Malingaaaa,” tweeted Suryakumar.
Sri Lanka’s 2014 T20 World Cup-winning captain Lasith Malinga had announced his retirement from all forms of cricket on Tuesday.
“Today is a very special day for me, I want to thank each and everyone who has supported me and blessed me throughout my T20 career,” said Malinga on his official YouTube channel.
Malinga also thanked team members and officials of Sri Lanka Cricket Board (SLC), Mumbai Indians, Melbourne Stars, Kent Cricket, Rangpur Riders, Guyana Amazon Warriors, Maratha Arabians, and Montreal Tigers.
“While Playing with you all, I got many experiences throughout my cricketing injury. And I will share it [experience] with young cricketers in the future,” he added.
Notably, in January, Lasith Malinga had retired from franchise cricket. The Sri Lankan speedster, then informed his decision to the Mumbai Indians management, making himself unavailable for the champion side’s retention wish list.
Malinga made his Test debut against Australia in July 2004. 16 days after his Test debut, Malinga played his first match in ODI cricket.
Known for his toe-crushing yorkers, Malinga has taken 4 wickets off 4 consecutive balls twice in international cricket. Malinga, who finished with 107 wickets in the shortest format, made his T20I debut against England in June 2006.

IPL 2021: Mohammed Shami and Wriddhiman Saha head to Dubai from Manchester

Abu Dhabi [UAE], September 11 : Indian pacer Mohammed Shami and wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha left for Dubai from Manchester on Saturday to join their respective Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises Sunrisers Hyderabad and Punjab Kings.
They will now undergo six days of quarantine and then will link up with the players in their respective bubbles. Saha and Shami tested negative for COVID-19 before departure from Manchester. “Here I come, Dubai! @SunRisers #UAE #Dubai,” Saha tweeted on Saturday.
“Finally wait is over super excited for IPL Off to Dubai #teamindia #mshami11 #dubai #india #ipl #instagram,” Shami tweeted.
Earlier, Mumbai Indians flew in skipper Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, and Suryakumar Yadav along with their families on a charter flight from Manchester to Abu Dhabi on Saturday morning.
Chennai Super Kings players are also expected to land in Dubai on Saturday. “Now that the Test match is off, we are looking to get the CSK boys into Dubai tomorrow,” CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan told ANI on Friday.
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) is also arranging a charter flight to get Virat Kohli and Mohammed Siraj into Dubai on Sunday morning, ahead of the resumption of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021. They will undergo a 6-day quarantine period before joining the team bubble.
On Friday, the 5th Test match between England and India was cancelled in Manchester. The BCCI and ECB held several rounds of discussion to find a way to play the Test match, however, the outbreak of COVID-19 in the Indian team contingent forced the decision of calling off the game.
The 14th season of the IPL, which was postponed in May this year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, will resume on September 19 in Dubai with a blockbuster clash between Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians.

ENG vs IND: All Indian players test negative for COVID-19

Manchester [UK]: Team India has returned negative results for COVID-19 hours after physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for coronavirus in Manchester. Speaking to ANI, sources in the know of developments confirmed the results. “The players have all returned negative results,” the source said.
Ahead of the fifth and final Test against England, Parmar tested positive for COVID-19 in Manchester. This had led to Team India’s training session for Thursday afternoon being cancelled.
However, there are no COVID-19 related worries in the England camp and Jos Buttler said everything is fine and the hosts are looking forward to the game.
“We don’t know too much about it at the moment. It would be naive to speculate on what’s going on. At the moment we’re fully expecting the game to go ahead and we’re preparing that way so fingers crossed the game will go ahead. Things are fine in our camp and we are looking forward to the game,” said Buttler in a virtual press conference.
This came after India head coach Ravi Shastri, bowling coach Bharat Arun and fielding coach R Sridhar returned positive results to their RT-PCR tests during the fourth Test.
They are currently undergoing isolation and can come out only after returning two negative results.
On Sunday, just half an hour before the start of play on Day 4 of the fourth Test, the BCCI said its medical team had isolated Shastri, Bharat Arun, Sridhar, and physio Nitin Patel as a precautionary measure after Shastri’s lateral flow test returned positive on Saturday evening.
The remaining members of the Team India contingent had undergone two Lateral Flow Tests — one on Saturday night and another on Sunday morning. The members upon returning negative COVID reports were allowed to proceed for Day 4 of the fourth Test at The Oval against England.

ICC concerned to note recent reports that women will no longer be allowed to play cricket in Afghanistan

New Delhi [India]: While all eyes are on recent developments in Afghanistan after the Taliban took over the country, recent media reports that women’s cricket will not be supported in Afghanistan has not gone down well with the cricket community. In fact, Cricket Australia has said it will have to rethink playing a Test match against the men’s team if the women’s team is not allowed to play.
The International Cricket Council (ICC) is monitoring the changing situation in Afghanistan and the board will discuss the impact this might have on the continued development of the game in the country. “The ICC is committed to the long-term growth of women’s cricket and despite the cultural and religious challenges in Afghanistan, steady progress had been made in this area since Afghanistan’s admission as a Full Member in 2017. The ICC has been monitoring the changing situation in Afghanistan and is concerned to note recent media reports that women will no longer be allowed to play cricket. This and the impact it will have on the continued development of the game will be discussed by the ICC Board at its next meeting,” an ICC official spokesperson told ANI.
Cricket Australia (CA) on Thursday said the planned men’s Test match against Afghanistan in November would not go ahead if the country does not support women’s cricket following the Taliban takeover. “Driving the growth of women’s cricket globally is incredibly important to Cricket Australia. Our vision for cricket is that it is a sport for all and we support the game unequivocally for women at every level,” Cricket Australia said in its official statement.
“If recent media reports that women’s cricket will not be supported in Afghanistan are substantiated, Cricket Australia would have no alternative but to not host Afghanistan for the proposed Test Match due to be played in Hobart,” it added.
Cricket Australia’s chief executive Nick Hockley on Wednesday had said that the call to go ahead with the one-off Test against Afghanistan lies with the Australian federal government.
Following Cricket Australia’s announcement, Australian Cricketers Association (ACA) on Thursday said that it fully stands behind the move as the human rights issue in Afghanistan transcends the game of cricket.

Eng vs Ind, 4th Test: Burns, Hameed hold fort as hosts need 291 more runs to win

London [UK]: England might be chasing 368 to win, but openers Haseeb Hameed and Rory Burns provided the hosts a solid start in the final session of Day Four on the ongoing fourth Test here at the Kennington Oval on Sunday.
At stumps, England’s score read 77/0– still needing 291 runs for the win with all ten wickets in hand. For the hosts, Burns (31) and Hameed (43) are at the crease. Chasing 368, England openers Rory Burns and Haseeb Hameed saw out the first ten overs, managing to score 20 runs. In the end, both these openers saw out 32 overs and ensured that the hosts enter the final day with all wickets intact.
Earlier, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant, and Shardul Thakur all registered scores of more than 50 as India set a target of 368 for England on Day 4 of the ongoing fourth Test here at the Kennington Oval on Sunday. Umesh Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah also played cameos of 25 and 24 as India posted a score of 466 in the second innings, extending the lead to 367. For England, Chris Woakes returned with three wickets.
Resuming the third and final session at 445/8, Bumrah added five more runs before being dismissed by Chris Woakes and this brought an end to the 36-run stand for the ninth wicket. In the end, India was bowled out for 466 in the 149th over. The final wicket to fall was of Umesh (25) and he lost his wicket to Craig Overton.
Earlier, Pant and Thakur piled on the misery on England bowlers as India reached a dominant position in the second session. At tea, India’s score read 445/8– a lead of 346 runs with two wickets in hand. For the visitors, Umesh Yadav (13) and Jasprit Bumrah (19) are currently at the crease. Resuming the second session at 329/6, Pant and Thakur added 46 more runs inside one hour and this put the English bowlers on the back foot, with the visitors extending their lead to more than 250. Shardul carried on with his form and he brought up his second fifty of the match in the 134th over.
England skipper Joe Root finally brought about the dismissal as he sent Thakur (60) back to the pavilion, ending the 100-run stand for the seventh wicket, reducing India to 412/7. Pant (50) also registered his half-century in the 138th over of the innings, however, as soon as he reached the landmark, the left-hander ended up losing his wicket to Moeen Ali.
Ravindra Jadeja, Ajinkya Rahane, and Virat Kohli might have lost their wickets but India extended their lead to 230 in the opening session. Overnight batters Kohli and Jadeja added 26 more runs to the total, before Jadeja (17) was trapped in front by Chris Woakes, ending the 59-run stand for the fourth wicket, and this brought Rahane to the middle.
Rahane (0) failed to open his account and he just last for eight balls as Woakes also had him trapped in front and India was reduced to 296/5 with the lead at 197. Rishabh Pant then joined Kohli in the middle and the duo put on 16 runs for the sixth wicket, but Moeen Ali cut short Virat’s (44) knock in the 111th over.
Brief Scores: India 191 and 466 all out (Rohit Sharma 127, Cheteshwar Pujara 61, Chris Woakes 3-83); England 290 and 77/0 (Haseeb Hameed 43, Rory Burns 31, Jasprit Bumrah 0-11).

Eng vs Ind, 4th Test: Rahul falls but Rohit, Pujara help visitors take lead

London [UK]: KL Rahul might have lost his wicket to James Anderson, but Rohit Sharma and Cheteshwar Pujara ensured India did not fall behind in the opening session of the third day of the ongoing fourth Test against England here at the Kennington Oval on Saturday.
At lunch, India’s score read 108/1 — a lead of 9 runs with nine wickets in the bag in the second essay. For the visitors, Rohit (47) and Pujara (14) are at the crease. Resuming at 43/0, Rahul and Rohit were looking rock solid and the duo saw out the first hour with both of them looking set for a big one. However, against the run of play, Rahul (46) lost his wicket to Anderson in the 34th over and the 83-run opening stand came to an end.
Anderson thought that Rahul was caught behind, but the on-field umpire did not think so. England opted for a review and the replays clearly indicated that there was a huge spike and (46) Rahul had to depart.
Pujara then joined Rohit in the middle and both batters saw out probing spells of English bowlers and India entered the lunch interval with nine wickets in hand.
On Friday, India had bowled out England for 290 and as a result, conceded a lead of 99 runs. For England, Ollie Pope and Chris Woakes registered half-centuries.
Brief Scores: India 191 and 108/1 (Rohit Sharma 47*, KL Rahul 46, James Anderson 1-28); England 290.

Dale Steyn announces retirement from all forms of cricket

Durban [South Africa]: One of the greatest pacers to have played the game of cricket, Dale Steyn, on Tuesday announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.
Proteas pacer Steyn had bid adieu to the longest format in 2019 but continued to play in the 50-over format and 20-over format. On Tuesday Steyn announced that he is now retiring from all forms of cricket. “And it’s been a long December and there is reason to believe, maybe this year will be better than the last. I cannot remember all the times I tried to tell myself to hold on to these moments as they pass,” said Steyn in an official statement.
“It has been 20 years of training, matches, travel, wins, losses, strapped feet, jet lag, joy, and brotherhood. There are too many memories to tell. Too many faces to thank. So I left it to the experts, to sum up, my favourite band, the Counting Crows,” he added.
Further in his statement, Steyn said: “Today I officially retire from the game I love the most, bittersweet but grateful. Thank you to everyone, from family to teammates, journalists to fans, it has been an incredible journey together.”
Dale Steyn finished the Test format with 439 wickets at an average of 22.95. Steyn is the leading wicket-taker for South Africa in the Test format, as he went past Shaun Pollock in 2019.
The right-arm seamer also went on to play 125 ODIs and 47 T20Is for South Africa, managing to take 260 wickets across both formats.
In the Indian Premier League, Steyn represented Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), SunRisers Hyderabad, Deccan Chargers, and Gujarat Lions over the course of his career.

Sunil Gavaskar’s mentor Vasu Paranjape, dies at 82

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], August 30 : Former India skipper Sunil Gavaskar’s mentor Vasu Paranjape passed away on Monday at his residence in Mumbai.
Paranjape passed away after a prolonged illness. He is survived by his son Jatin, a former Mumbai batter, who also played four ODIs, reported ESPNcricinfo. Paranjape mentored the likes of Sunil Gavaskar, Dilip Vengsarkar, Sanjay Manjrekar and Rohit Sharma. The coach played a big role in all these cricketers reaching great heights in cricket.
Former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar took to Twitter to express his condolences.
“A truly exceptional and invaluable member of the cricket community passes away. RIP Vasu Sir,” tweeted Manjrekar.
Former India batsman Wasim Jaffer tweeted: “Saddened to know that Vasu sir is no more. Heartfelt condolences to @jats72 and family. Vasu sir always found a way to make those around him laugh. He will live on through his teachings and stories. RIP.”
Former India pacer Ajit Agarkar also took to Twitter to express his condolences.
“Learnt a lot as a young Mumbai player from Vasu Paranjape sir, and he made learning the game a lot of fun for us . Deepest condolences to the family #RipVasusir,” tweeted Agarkar.
Former England batter Ed Smith had also once gone up to Paranjape to seek his advice on batting.

Stuart Binny’s contribution to Karnataka Cricket would be written in golden letters: Sourav Ganguly

Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India]: The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Sourav Ganguly on Monday said Stuart Binny’s contribution for Karnataka cricket would be written in golden letters. Stuart announced his retirement from all forms of cricket on Monday.
“I would like to wish Stuart Binny all the very best for his future endeavours. He has had a long career. First-Class cricket is the base for a good international set up and Stuart has had an immense contribution in that. His contribution for Karnataka State Cricket Association, which has produced so many players of repute, will be written in golden letters. I wish him all the success in his life,” Ganguly stated in an official BCCI release. Talking about Stuart, BCCI Secretary Jay Shah said: “Stuart Binny has been a true servant of Indian cricket and the all-rounder has contributed heavily in the domestic circuit as well. His dedication and sincerity towards the game shall be an inspiration for the future cricketers who are looking to pursue the game. I wish Stuart good luck for the future.”
A right-handed batsman and a medium pacer, Stuart, played 6 Tests, 14 ODIs and 3 T20Is for India. Stuart’s best moment in India colours came in 2014 when he ran through the Bangladesh line-up, registering the best-ever ODI bowling figures (6/4) by an Indian.
A solid contributor in First-Class cricket, Stuart, played 95 First-Class games in his 17-year career scoring 4,796 runs and picking 148 wickets. Playing for Karnataka, Stuart was part of the Ranji Trophy-winning team in 2013-14.
In the Indian Premier League (IPL) he played for Mumbai Indians, Rajasthan Royals and Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Can’t wait to work hard, help Sussex realise its full potential, says Steven Finn

Sussex [UK]: Sussex Cricket has announced the signing of Steven Finn on a multi-year, all-format deal. The 32-year-old right-arm seamer will join the club from Middlesex at the conclusion of the current season.
After signing his contract with Sussex, Finn said the squad is full of exciting talent and he can’t wait to work hard and help the team realise its full potential. “I am looking forward to the opportunity to play for Sussex from the 2022 season onwards. It is a club that I have always admired and found to be challenging opponents,” said Finn in a statement.
“The squad is full of exciting talent, and I can’t wait to work hard and help the team realise its full potential,” he added.
With 254 wickets in 126 appearances for England across all three formats, Steve needs little introduction. He has featured in three Ashes-winning teams, including the side that won in Australia 2010/11, was a mainstay of the England ODI side that topped the ICC ODI rankings in 2012 and played in both the 2012 World T20 and the 2015 World Cup.
Reacting to Finn’s impending arrival at the 1st Central County Ground, Sussex Championship and One-Day head coach Ian Salisbury, said: “It’s fantastic to be able to attract a player of Steven’s calibre to Hove.
“He really likes the project we’ve got going on down here and is very keen to use his performances and impart all his knowledge to help us get to where we want to be in two- or three-years’ time: competing on all fronts. Steve knows all about winning, whether with Middlesex or England,” he added.
During his international career, Steve has been ranked as high as number two in the ICC ODI Bowling Rankings, number five in the IT20 rankings, and number 14 in the Test rankings.
Sussex’s T20 head coach, James Kirtley added: “We have talked at length about bowling, and I am very excited and looking to working with him. Steve is very keen to perform for Sussex, he really likes what we are doing, and was adamant he wanted to help our young bowlers.”

Joe Root becomes England’s most successful Test captain as England beat India in the third test

Headingly [UK], August 28 : After registering a crucial victory at Headingly in the third Test against India by an innings and 76 runs, Joe Root became the English captain with most Test wins.
Root has led the English side a total of 55 times and won a record 27 Test matches pushing Vaughan to second on the list with 26 victories. Alastair Cook is on third with 24 victories in 59 matches. The England bowlers came out all guns blazing on Saturday morning and wrapped the third Test up against India in the opening session itself. The hosts registered an innings victory to level the five-match series 1-1 with two games to go.
Robinson (2-16 and 5-65) who took his second five-wicket haul in just his fourth Test was adjudged as the Man of the Match for wrapping up India’s second innings for 278.
“It was a fantastic and clinical performance from the bowlers. The two big lads (James Anderson and Ollie Robinson) put loads of pressure with three maidens, and we had a really good opportunity to take wickets and we took them ruthlessly,” Root told the host broadcasters at the end of the game.
Asked about the professional show from both the batting and bowling unit, Root said: “We know we are capable of perfomances like this, and we have the talent, that opening stand was fantastic too. We controlled and hung in with the new ball, and we reaped the rewards.”

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