West Indies vs India First Test Day 1 Antigua Match Report August 22 2019

Under-fire Indian vice captain Ajinkya Rahane saved his team’s blushes with a gritty 81 as the visitors finished Day 1 of the opening test at 203 for six in Antigua on Thursday.

The decision to axe Ravi Ashwin, left out in favour of Ravi Jadeja, took fans and pundits alike by surprise. The visitors also chose to persist with Hanuma Vihari, with the Andhra batsman getting the nod at 6 ahead of Rohit Sharma.

India's line up against West Indies 2019 Continue reading “West Indies vs India First Test Day 1 Antigua Match Report August 22 2019”

End of an era- Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn retire from cricket

It’s officially the end of an era. With the retirements of Dale Steyn and Hashim Amla, all members of the South African side who scripted that famous series victory Down Under against Australia in 2008 have called it a day.

That Proteas team was also the first one since readmission to beat Australia in Australia, and they didn’t lose a single away test series between 2007 and 2015- quite an amazing statistic given the variety of conditions that prevail in test cricket today. Amla and Steyn were both key members of that squad as was AB de Villiers, who also hung up his international boots last year. Interestingly, the trio were the 295th, 296th and 297th players for South Africa and made their debuts in the same year- will the Proteas ever have a more impactful troika of players in the future? Continue reading “End of an era- Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn retire from cricket”

India Squad for Tour of West Indies 2019 Announced- No Shubman Gill

India have officially announced their squad for their upcoming tour of the West Indies. There was talk that the World Cup semi-finalists would adopt split captaincy for this tour, but skipper Virat Kohli continues to hold the reigns across all three formats. A couple of key players have been rested given their workload, but it still remains a very strong squad- certainly not a second string one by any stretch of imagination.

Because this tour comes on the heels of the just concluded World Cup, let’s take a look at their ODI squad first.

What changes have been made from the World Cup roster for this squad to tour the Carribean?

There are a few changes- Vijay Shankar is injured, MS Dhoni has made himself “unavailable”, Dinesh Karthik has seemingly been axed and the pair of Hardik Pandya and Jasprit Bumrah have been rested. In come Shreyas Iyer and Manish Pandey- the former widely expected to be India’s next No.4 and the latter rewarded for a string of strong domestic performances. Navdeep Saini and Khaleel Ahmed are the new bowlers in the squad.

Shikhar Dhawan returns to the squad after missing the latter half of India’s World Cup campaign with a thumb injury.

Somewhat surprisingly, there is no Shubman Gill, but chairman of selectors MSK Prasad said that the Punjab youngster, who toured New Zealand earlier this year, is very much in their plans. Rishabh Pant is also the only wicket keeper in the squad, with KL Rahul expected to provide temporary cover if required.

Kedar Jadhav retains his spot in the fifteen despite not featuring in the XI that took on New Zealand in the semis.

India ODI Squad to tour West Indies 2019

India Test Squad for West Indies Tour 2019

The test squad will be seen in action for the first time since that historic win in Australia. Several “test-only” regulars of the squad- Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ajinkya Rahane and Ishant Sharma all feature as expected. There is a welcome return after a long injury layoff for Wriddhiman Saha. Bhuvneshwar Kumar misses out with the selectors preferring the quartet of Mohammad Shami, Sharma, Bumrah and Umesh Yadav in the pace department. Rohit Sharma, so prolific in the 50 over format, has been given another chance to add to his 27 test caps.

India Test Squad for WI Tour 2019

India T20 Squad

The T20 squad retains a strong batting core, with Kohli, Sharma, Dhawan and Rahul all present but features an experimental bowling outfit. Both Chahars- Rahul and Deepak, have made the cut, as has Washington Sundar.

India T20 Squad for WI Tour 2019

Jofra Archer could have key role to play in Ashes, says Stuart Broad

While a lot of the talk has been around whether or not Jofra Archer will be in England’s World Cup squad, veteran Stuart Broad has said that the 24 year old could also play a vital role in the Ashes later this year.

Archer, already a T20 superstar, impressed one and all with his bowling in England’s recent internationals. His pace was particularly eye-catching, with the Barbados born star comfortably hitting speeds of 90 mph+, and unlike some others in the modern game, he’s also got the control to go with it. Archer bowled only four overs in England’s rain-hit first ODI against Pakistan at the Oval, but his 4-2-6-1 spell was enough to make several veterans of the game gush about him.

Legendary all-rounder Andrew Flintoff has said that he would drop “anyone” for Archer, and added that he was impressed with the latter’s array of skills, saying that he had “to be in” the squad. Archer’s pace and ability to deliver yorkers, bouncers and slower balls at will impressed the Lancashire great. Continue reading “Jofra Archer could have key role to play in Ashes, says Stuart Broad”

Wiaan Mulder called up to Proteas squad for 2019 Sri Lanka Tests

South Africa have called up all rounder Wiaan Mulder to their squad for the two test series against Sri Lanka at home later this month. The 20 year old is the only addition to the squad that convincingly beat Pakistan 3-0 at home.

Against Pakistan, South Africa fielded a 4 man attack in the form of Dale Steyn, Kagiso Rabada, Duanne Olivier and Keshav Maharaj in the opener at Centurion. Olivier, who only got into the XI because of Vernon Philander’s injury, effectively made himself undroppable with a 11fer at SuperSport Park. When Philander returned, they chose to go with an all pace attack in both Cape Town and Johannesburg, with Maharaj having to make way.

In the third test at the Wanderers, the Proteas were without skipper Faf du Plessis, which allowed Zubayr Hamza to make his debut. The Cobras batsman gave a decent account of himself on debut, and it could well be a shoot out between him and Theunis de Bruyn as to whom makes way when the captain comes back. Continue reading “Wiaan Mulder called up to Proteas squad for 2019 Sri Lanka Tests”

Zubayr Hamza impressive on Proteas debut but South Africa squander advantage at Wanderers- Day 1 Report

Zubayr Hamza scored an assured 41 on test debut for South Africa but the hosts squandered their advantage in a frenetic last session that saw them lose 7 wickets for 33 runs after being 229/3 at one stage on the opening day of the third test at the Wanderers.

Stand in skipper Dean Elgar won the toss and opted to bat first. The Proteas made only one change, with Hamza coming in for suspended regular captain Faf du Plessis. Pakistan however made three of them, with Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf and Hasan Ali coming in for Fakhar Zaman, Yasir Shah and Shaheen Shah Afridi.

Elgar was the first to go, edging an Abbas delivery to the keeper for just 5. His opening partner Aiden Markram, surprisingly dropped from the South Africa ODI squad against Pakistan, was impressive, hitting fours at will as Amla and he took control of the game. Just as it had been in Cape Town, Markram looked good for a century but fell at an inopportune moment. On 90, he attempted to flick an Ashraf delivery down the leg side, only for Sarfaraz Ahmed to take a good catch. Continue reading “Zubayr Hamza impressive on Proteas debut but South Africa squander advantage at Wanderers- Day 1 Report”

Australia’s Test Squad against Sri Lanka 2019- Will Pucovski Receives Maiden Test Call Up

Here is the 13 man roster announced by Australia’s selectors to do duty for the national team feature in the two test matches against Sri Lanka beginning January 24.

Stung by the poor performances of several players in the recent 2-1 loss to India (their first ever loss at home in the test format to the nation), the selectors have wielded the axe, with the likes of Aaron Finch, Shaun Marsh, his brother Mitchell, and Peter Handscomb all shown the door.

There is a maiden call up to the national squad for talented youngster Will Pucovski. The 20 year old has always been regarded as one for the future, despite his limited first class experience, but recently took a break from the game owing to mental health issues.

Joining Pucowski in the national squad are the Queensland pair of Joe Burns and Matt Renshaw. The bowling united has however remained unchanged, with Peter Siddle also retaining his spot in the squad.

The first of the two test matches will be played at Brisbane (Jan 24-28), with the other to be played in the Australian capital city of Canberra (Feb 1-5). Neither venue hosted a test during India’s tour Down Under. Continue reading “Australia’s Test Squad against Sri Lanka 2019- Will Pucovski Receives Maiden Test Call Up”

India vs Australia Sydney Fourth Test Day 4- Match Report January 6 2019

Kuldeep Yadav bagged his second five-wicket haul in Test cricket as Australia were asked to follow on at home for the first time since 1988 on a rain hit fourth day in Sydney on Sunday.

Play only started after the lunch break with the home side resuming on 236 for 6, and it began badly for the Aussies as Pat Cummins was bowled by Mohammed Shami without adding to his overnight score. Continue reading “India vs Australia Sydney Fourth Test Day 4- Match Report January 6 2019”

India vs Australia Sydney Fourth Test Day 3 Match Report January 5 2019

Spinners Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja combined and claimed five wickets between them as India moved into a dominating position at the end of Day 3 of the fourth test at Sydney on Saturday. Continue reading “India vs Australia Sydney Fourth Test Day 3 Match Report January 5 2019”

India vs Australia Sydney Fourth Test Day 2 Match Report-2019

Rishabh Pant became the first Indian wicket keeper to score a test century in Australia as the visitors took control of the fourth test at the end of Day 2 at the SCG.

Resuming at 303/4, the overnight pair of Hanuma Vihari and Cheteshwar Pujara added 26 more runs before Nathan Lyon got the break through for Australia. Vihari’s attempted sweep didn’t come off and the ball hit his glove, giving close-in fielder Marnus Labuschagne an easy catch.

Pujara and Pant stitched together an 89 run association for the sixth wicket before the Saurashtra batsman was dismissed just seven short of what would’ve been a magnificent double century. Lyon was again the wicket taker, taking a sharp catch off his own bowling. Continue reading “India vs Australia Sydney Fourth Test Day 2 Match Report-2019”