Two Bangladesh players vomited while batting in Delhi

Staff Writer Updated: 5 November, 2019, 10:39 AM IST


The first T20I between India and Bangladesh was played despite hazardous pollution levels in Delhi. According to a report in ESPNCricinfo, Soumya Sarkar and one other player vomited while batting during the first game of the series.

Bangladesh registered its first win over India in this format of the game. There were calls to cancel the game but the governing body of Indian cricket refused to act on the matter.

“Personally, this air pollution is nothing for me,” Mushfiqur said after the match. “I was much more interested in which bowler I was facing. Playing against India in front of a big crowd isn’t something Bangladesh team gets every day. I think we have come to play our biggest bilateral series, so these things don’t matter.”

Sourav Ganguly had assured of taking conditions into consideration before allotting games to stadiums situated in the northern part of the country.

“In future, when we schedule, especially in the northern part of India during the winter, we will have to be a little bit more practical,” Ganguly had said. “I know post-Diwali it’s a bit tough in the north. I hope everything goes fine.”

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News Tennis

Defending champ Zverev beats error-prone Nadal at ATP Finals

AP Updated: 12 November, 2019, 10:30 AM IST


After being thoroughly outplayed by defending champion Alexander Zverev at the ATP Finals, Rafael Nadal refused to make any excuses.

The top-ranked Spaniard wouldn't blame the abdominal problem that forced him to pull out of the Paris Masters semifinals just nine days earlier, or a hand injury that kept him sidelined before that. And he bristled at the notion that his recent marriage could be a factor in a sub-par performance.

Something was clearly off for Nadal, though, who lost 6-2, 6-4 to a player he had a perfect 5-0 record against before Monday's match at the O2 Arena.

Nadal dropped his serve three straight times, didn't force a single break point, and his normally powerful forehand was responsible for more than four times as many unforced errors (13) as winners (3).

Still, Nadal insisted there was nothing wrong with him physically.

"I did not feel pain in the abdominal at all," he said. "So the physical issue was not an excuse at all. The only excuse is I was not good enough tonight."

Nadal hasn't finished a tournament since winning the U.S. Open in August, also pulling out of Shanghai because of a hand injury. That lack of playing time certainly isn't helpful coming into an event featuring only the top eight players in the world, rather than lower-ranked early opponents.

He still has to face Stefanos Tsitsipas and Daniil Medvedev in round-robin play, and probably has to beat both in order to reach the semifinals.

"Knowing that I would not be at my 100% in terms of feelings, in terms of movement, in terms of confidence or hitting the ball, I needed my best competitive spirit this afternoon, and I was not there in that way," Nadal said. "I need to play much better in two days."

The Spaniard then got a bit testy when a journalist asked whether his October marriage to longtime girlfriend Maria Francisca Perello has changed his outlook on the game at all.

"Honestly, are you asking me this? Is that a serious question or a joke?" Nadal bristled. "It is a big surprise for me (that) you ask me this after I have been with the same girl for 15 years and having a very stable and normal life. Doesn't matter if you put a ring on your finger or not."

For Zverev, this latest win means he has beaten each of tennis' Big Three in his last three matches at the O2.

News Football

Cristiano Ronaldo hasn't dribbled past an opponent in three years - Fabio Capello

AP Updated: 12 November, 2019, 10:28 AM IST


Former Juventus coach Fabio Capello said the 34-year-old Ronaldo is not the same extraordinary player.

"I didn't like it (his reaction), it wasn't nice," Capello said. "He should be a champion also when he comes off the field.

"The truth is Cristiano Ronaldo hasn't dribbled past an opponent in three years. When he played in Spain he always went past players and left them there ... at the moment he can't do the kind of moves that Dybala can."

Ronaldo finished last season — his first in Italy — as Juve's top scorer with 28 goals in all competitions. He has six so far this season, two fewer than he had after the same number of matches last year.

Ronaldo's next matches will likely be for Portugal in European Championship qualifying matches against Lithuania and Luxembourg.

News Football

Cristiano Ronaldo could be banned for two years for leaving stadium early

AP Updated: 12 November, 2019, 10:26 AM IST


Cristiano Ronaldo walked off the field and glared at Maurizio Sarri, muttering something undiscernible.

He then stormed down the tunnel.

It was the 55th minute of Juventus' match against AC Milan and Ronaldo had just been substituted for the second straight match after another disappointing performance.

His replacement, Paulo Dybala, went on to score the only goal, helping Juventus to a 1-0 victory on Sunday.

Italian media reported that Ronaldo wasn't around to congratulate Dybala or his teammates, having left the stadium shortly before the final whistle.

"I don't know," Sarri said when asked if that was true. "If it's true what you say then it's a problem for him to sort out with his own teammates."

Sarri, who took over as coach at Juventus this season, insisted he was more than fine with Ronaldo's reaction toward him. In fact, he was glad about it.

"If he gets angry at being substituted after all he has won, I'm very happy about that because it means he still has his head fully in the game and he wants to help the team at all costs," Sarri said. "I like it when a player reacts a bit when he gets taken off. I would be much more worried if it was the opposite."

Sarri said Ronaldo has been bothered by a knee injury for nearly a month and is playing through the pain.

News Football

Under-pressure Emery told he's still 'right man for the job'

AP Updated: 12 November, 2019, 10:24 AM IST


High-ranking officials at Arsenal have told manager Unai Emery he is still "the right man for the job" but the team's results must improve.

Emery has come under pressure with Arsenal winning just two of its last 10 English Premier League games to fall eight points off the top four.

Arsenal's head of football, Raul Sanllehi, and its managing director, Vinai Venkatesham, told club staff at a pre-planned meeting they are "as disappointed as everyone else with both our results and performances at this stage of the season."

"We share the frustration with our fans, Unai, players and all our staff as they are not at the level we want or expect," they said in comments reported by Britain's Press Association. "Things need to improve to meet our objectives for the season, and we firmly believe Unai is the right man for the job, together with the backroom team we have in place."

Arsenal heads into the two-week international break on the back of losing at Leicester 2-0 in the league, making it one win from the team's last seven matches in all competitions.

Emery, who was hired as the replacement for Arsene Wenger in May 2018, recently took the captaincy from Granit Xhaka after the midfielder swore at fans as he was jeered following his substitution in a 2-2 home draw against Crystal Palace.

News Football

Raheem Sterling suspended by England after 'disturbance'

AP Updated: 12 November, 2019, 10:18 AM IST


Raheem Sterling will not be considered for England's European Championship qualifier against Montenegro after emotions ran high when the team gathered following Manchester City's loss to Liverpool.

A day after the Premier League top-of-the-table match at Anfield, where Sterling clashed with Liverpool defender Joe Gomez near the end, both players apparently became involved in another exchange when the England squad convened at the national training center at Burton upon Trent.

The English Football Association was moved to say in a statement that Sterling will not be considered for the game against Montenegro at Wembley "as a result of a disturbance in a private team area at St. George's Park today. He will remain with the squad."

England manager Gareth Southgate said it was the right call.

"One of the great challenges and strengths for us is that we've been able to separate club rivalries from the national team. Unfortunately the emotions of yesterday's game were still raw," Southgate said.

"My feeling is that the right thing for the team is the action we have taken. Now that the decision has been made with the agreement of the entire squad, it's important that we support the players and focus on Thursday night."

Sterling has been in exceptional form for England, scoring eight goals and providing five assists during Euro 2020 qualification. He will miss their last home qualifier for Euro 2020 and the chance to advance, plus the team's 1000th fixture.

News Cricket

Babar Azam can join the likes of Virat Kohli and Steve Smith in best players’ list – Mike Hussey

Staff Writer Updated: 12 November, 2019, 10:03 AM IST


Pakistani cricketer Babar Azam is one of the best players in international cricket. He recently led Pakistan in the T20I series against Australia and scored a total of 115 runs. The right hand batsman is in exceptional touch during the ongoing match against Australia A, where he was unbeaten on 157 at the close of first day's play. Former Aussie cricketer Mike Hussey feels Babar Azam has in him to join the likes of Virat Kohli and Steve Smith.

"If Babar Azam can start hitting some big hundreds in Tests, he can be in that same conversation when we talk about the best players in the world, like Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Kane Williamson and Joe Root. He's that good, he's a brilliant player," Hussey said after witnessing Babar's heroics on Day 1 of the Practice Test.

Australian cricketer Travis Head also hailed Babar. "He's an exceptionally good player. He's obviously translated that (white-ball) form nicely today," Head said at the end of day's play. "We'll think of some plans over the next couple of days and the next couple of weeks, I guess, for the guys playing the first Test against him."

News Cricket

Ranveer recreates Kapil’s Natraj shot to perfection, former skipper bows down in appreciation

Staff Writer Updated: 11 November, 2019, 5:26 PM IST


Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh is playing Kapil Dev in his upcoming film ''83', which is based on India's historic 1983 World Cup triumph. He recently shared a photo from the famous movie where he can be seen playing Kapil Dev's iconic Natraj shot. The World Cup winning skipper was impressed with the way Ranveer has recreated his renowned stroke.

"Hats off Ranveer!" Kapil Dev wrote while retweeting his photo.

Sanjay Manjrekar also heaped praise on the talented Bollywood actor.

"Well done Ranveer! Not easy to 'pull' this off. Great attention to detail too with gear etc," Manjrekar tweeted.

It is one of the most awaited movies as India went on beat the Windies against all odds. The team led by Kapil Dev successfully defended a low total of 183.

Mohinder Amarnath, who is being played by Saqib Saleem in the movie, was declared the Man of the match in the finale for his figures of 3012, as West Indies were bowled out for 140.

News Cricket

I was going for six sixes in an over off Afif Hossain - Shreyas Iyer

Staff Writer Updated: 11 November, 2019, 3:53 PM IST


Shreyas Iyer and Lokesh Rahul scored attacking half-centuries after India was put into bat and reached 174-5.

Iyer scored a career-best 62 runs off 33 balls with three fours and five sixes while Rahul made 52 off 35 balls as they rescued India's innings after a double blow early on.

India had made a poor start with big-hitting Rohit Sharma (2) and Shikhar Dhawan (19) falling cheaply.

Bangladesh won the opening T20 by seven wickets, its first-ever win over India in the T20 format. India won the second T20 by eight wickets to level the series.

The T20 series will be followed by a two-test series, the second of which will be a day-night match.

The first test begins in Indore on Nov. 14. After the match, Iyer was interviewed by Yuzvendra Chahal.

“I was going for six sixes, but I knew after hitting three, the bowler will throw in a Yorker. But, in that situation, you can’t do anything and when you hit three boundaries, you have to go for six sixes, any batsmen would do the same,” said Iyer about his heroics.

News Cricket

Vaughan picks Eng and Aus as favourites to win T20 WC, gets trolled for not picking India

Tarun Singh Updated: 11 November, 2019, 3:48 PM IST


India is a cricket-crazy country and fans’ support Team India in any way possible. So how could they leave former England cricketer Michael Vaughan, who predicted that England or Australia will lift the next T20I World cup trophy, without considering Kohli-led Team India.

Michael Vaughan got trolled by cricket-mad Indian fans in displeasure when he took to Twitter and wrote, “Early T20 World Cup prediction ... England or Australia will be winning it ... #JustSaying.”

Indians fans on Twitter seemed confident that this time Virat Kohli-led Team India will definitely become the World Champions in T20I.

Vaughan tweeted after England clinched the five-match T20I series 3-2 against New Zealand.

Team Australia and England are holding number 2 and 3 positions respectively in the T20 internationals. Meanwhile, Team India are ranked 5th with 9,349 points.

India clinched the T20I series against Bangladesh with the help of new faces. Deepak Chahar and Shivam Dube were in top form in the third and final T20I.

India’s next T20I series is against West Indies which will start from December 6.

Meanwhile, MSK Prasad-led selection committee has made it clear that they will prefer young guns in order to finalize the best playing squad for the T20 World Cup in Australia.

News Cricket

Chahal sends fans into meltdown over THIS priceless throwback photo with Dhoni

Staff Writer Updated: 11 November, 2019, 3:28 PM IST


Yuzvendra Chahal was on a roll against Bangladesh. His exceptional bowling and timely wickets led India to an emphatic series win after losing the first game in Delhi. The Indian spinner is quite active on social media and loves to interact with fans. He took to Twitter to post a throwback picture with MS Dhoni and Kuldeep Yadav.

While Dhoni has not played cricket since India’s semi-final defeat, Kuldeep Yadav was axed from the T20 squad following his dismissal performance in the recent times. Meanwhile, picture shared by Chahal was soon flooded with comments from cricket fanatics.

India beat Bangladesh by 30 runs in their third and final Twenty20 match with medium-quick Chahar needing only 3.2 overs to destroy Bangladesh, including a yorker for the last wicket of Aminul Islam to set the record with a hat trick.

Chasing a winning target of 175, Bangladesh was bowled out for 144 in 19.2 overs.

Chahar's figures overtook Sri Lankan Ajantha Mendis' 6-8 against Zimbabwe in 2012. Chahar also overtook teammate Yuzvendra Chahal's 6-25 as the best T20I performance by an Indian bowler.

He found an able partner in allrounder Shivam Dube who chipped in with 3-30 from four overs. A key moment came in the 14th over when Dube bowled Mushfiqur Rahim for a golden duck.

Dube dismissed Naim and Afif Hossain off consecutive deliveries to put India back in charge.

The asking rate climbed and Chahar enjoyed a hat trick across two overs at the end to hand India the victory.

Earlier, Shreyas Iyer and Lokesh Rahul scored attacking half-centuries after India was put into bat and reached 174-5.

News Cricket

Dwayne Bravo likely to come out of international retirement

Staff Writer Updated: 11 November, 2019, 3:10 PM IST


Dwayne Bravo, the former West Indian all-rounder, is planning to come out of international retirement. He was ecstatic after West Indies won its first ODI series in five years. The star player feels cricket is in the right hands at the moment. Bravo shared a message through a video.

“Congratulations to the team. It has been five years since we have not won an ODI series and the boys have now done this. I am a former West Indies cricketer but I may soon come out of international retirement. Let me tell you all that you can’t think that West Indies cricket is now back to where we want it to be. What we have here are the right people in the right places and we are pointing in the right direction,” the former all-rounder Dwayne Bravo said as quoted by Trinidad Guardian.

He took a dig at the previous administrator of the cricket board.

“West Indies cricket has suffered at the hands of vindictive people who were bent on keeping certain people away from the team, ending many careers,” he added.

Feature Cricket

The Smith-Cronje Earpiece Connection

Sreelata S Yellamrazu Updated: 11 November, 2019, 3:05 PM IST


One of the more interesting, if not altogether controversial, instances that passed under the radar in the past week was the issue of relaying of information across the earpiece platform. Ironically Australia’s Steve Smith and South Africa’s late Hansie Cronje shared yet another strange connection – not of ignominy only but also, controversial innovation.

In the third one day international between Australia and Sri Lanka, there was a moment where Steve Smith had yet another near brain fade moment where in a conversation with the commentators, he decided to relay the information passed onto him to the Australian captain, Aaron Finch, about Pat Cummins being on a hat trick. While Finch did not heed the advice and retained the original field, it brought into question once more the veracity of having players hooked up to a microphone and earpiece while playing on the field.

The incident brought back memories of then South African captain, Hansie Cronje, trying the innovative earpiece idea with the coach, Bob Woolmer. Not customary in cricket to have the captain advised by the coach directly in real time, almost as soon as Hansie Cronje played out the event, the earpiece activity was put to rest and with it, the idea of having any kind of direct, wireless conversation between coach and captain. The innovation put to bed, cricket returned to its traditional form, with one exception particularly with the advent of Twenty20 and the need for interactive cricket to insert more spice into the game. Cricket’s version of a bird’s eye view.

While tennis has modified the relationship between coach and player somewhat, cricket buried the idea although it brought in a concept of having the commentators connected by having one of the cricketers on the field hooked in on the conversation at the discretion of the commentators and producers from time to time. While it might have added a quirky sideshow to the entertainment format, it is caused a few controversial moments not unlike the Smith moment.

It has not been without controversy, bringing into play some cricketers opposed to the idea over issues of concentration and discomfort with that kind of entertainment gimmick. More importantly, although rare, there have been a few instances where the commentators’ inadvertent slip of the tongue has led to key passing on of information which could benefit the fielding team. With more untrained commentators that are often recently retired cricketers who are still too close to the game and/or the players, it can be a tricky scenario. It becomes complicated when it could be used a way to pass on information, not unlike spot fixing, for certain interests, of team, entertainment, tournament or all of the above.

Feature Cricket

5 Major Takeaways for India from T20I series against Bangladesh

Harshit Anand Updated: 11 November, 2019, 2:54 PM IST


At one stage in the third T20I, with dew gaining traction and India lacking a quality fifth bowler, Bangladesh needed just 65 runs from 43 balls to win a historic T20I series in India. But it was not to be as Indian bowlers made a fighting comeback and as a result, the Men in Blue won by a fine margin of 30 runs. It was yet another three-match T20I series triumph for India after being 0-1 down.

It was a great show of grit and character from an inexperienced Indian team, which had its sloppy moments in the series. But all is well if it ends well.

Today, we take a look at the 5 Major Takeaways for India from T20I series win over Bangladesh!

Rishabh Pant is in a complete mess

India's promising wicket-keeper batsman, Rishabh Pant made 33 runs in the two innings he batted against Bangladesh. He again struggled to get going. Pant is seemingly low on confidence and is confused in terms of batting approach. Also his execution with the bat, has not got better with time. Behind the wicket as well, he made a few errors in form of poor DRS calls. In the best interests of the team and also Pant, he should be sent back to domestic cricket. The youngster needs to regain his swagger and confidence in batting and also ponder how to translate his X-factor abilities at the highest-level.

The rise and rise of Shreyas Iyer

Shreyas Iyer was the most impressive Indian batsman in the T20I series. The 24-year old showcased elite intent in all the three games but saved his best for the series-decider, where he top-scored for India with 62 runs from 33 balls on a tricky pitch. He hit five sixes and treated spinners with absolute mayhem. Iyer has now cemented his place in the limited-overs format at the much debated no.4 position. Even in the first two T20Is, he had shown glimpses of his extravagant abilities with a 13-ball 22 in the first T20I and 13-ball 24 in the second game respectively. He had played match-winning knocks in West Indies ODIs as well and if he improves his game against high-end pace, he can be one of the best batsmen in the world.

Deepak Chahar- India's latest bowling sensation

Type casted as a new-ball specialist, it was Khaleel Ahmed's poor death bowling in the Delhi T20I, which forced India to bowl Chahar at death in Rajkot and Nagpur T20Is. He first impressed by giving away just 15 runs and taking wicket of Bangladesh captain Mahmudullah at death in the second T20I and then had a historic outing at Nagpur, where he secured best-ever T20 international figures by any bowler- 6/7. The 27-year old has slower bouncers, knuckle balls, cutters, and Yorkers up his sleeve to trouble batsman at the back end, which when combined with his ability to take wickets with the new ball, makes him an exciting package for India. Chahar finished with 8 wickets in three games, had an economy of 5.41, and was adjudged the Man-of-the-Match in the series decider and also the Player-of-the-Series.

Time up for Shikhar Dhawan and Khaleel Ahmed

Shikhar Dhawan had a forgettable T20I series against Bangladesh. He batted at a below-par strike-rate of 107.05 and struggled to find the right tempo with his batting. On the other hand, KL Rahul impressed with an exceptional fifty in high pressure situation of the series-decider. Dhawan, after playing 57 T20I innings, averages 27.85 and most importantly, has a mediocre strike-rate of 128.22. In comparison, KL Rahul is averaging 42.34 and has a strike-rate of 145.37 after 28 innings. It's high time when Rahul replaces Dhawan as opener in the shortest format.

Khaleel Ahmed bowled poor line and lengths and looked horribly out of sorts. He has 13 wickets in 14 T20Is, with his economy hovering around 9. When put under pressure, the left-arm pacer kept bowling half-trackers. There was a time in the series when Bangladesh batsmen had hit seven consecutive fours off his bowling.

Lack of wicket-taking ability in Krunal-Sundar

In the last 10 T20Is, Krunal Pandya has just picked four wickets, going wicket less in as many as seven games. He has batted nine times out of 18 games but barring a knock or two, hasn't been impressive enough. No wonder why India fielded an extra batsman in his place in the third T20I. On the other hand, Washington Sundar has picked up five wickets in his last 10 T20Is, going wicketless in as many as five games. Sundar has batted just four times in his 15 match T20I career, his best score being 14*. It shows he rarely gets to bat and doesn't have a notable contribution with the willow. In comparison, Shivam Dube, who was also playing as an all-rounder, took three crucial wickets in the series-decider.

Chahal bowled brilliantly in the Rajkot T20I and was among the wickets in the series, taking four wickets in three matches. He had a catch dropped off his bowling in the first game and a missed stumping in the second game, otherwise the wrist-spinner could have had more wickets. And after the series, India should again look back at KulCha for the T20Is.

Opinion Cricket

Why Deepak Chahar is the silent assassin of Team India in T20Is?

CT Contributor Updated: 11 November, 2019, 2:18 PM IST


India have found an answer for a fast bowler in the absence of key assets in the side. When you look at India's scenario in T20Is, the preparations are already on in the build-up to the ICC World T20 to be held in Australia next year. And the 2-1 series over Bangladesh at home will give the side enough platform to look at things and analyze the same. The man of the show was Deepak Chahar, who claimed 6/7 to register the best-ever bowling figures in a T20I match. He achieved the feat during the series decider in Nagpur.

Interestingly, with dew favoring the batsmen, bowling was difficult. But credit to Chahar, who was consistent in both his spells. He got the early breakthroughs in the power play overs and then came back at the death to do the ultimate damage. It isn't just about one match though that makes him stand out or be considered as a silent assassin. When you look at his trajectory, Chahar has grabbed the chances and made his presence felt. In seven T20Is, he has picked up 14 wickets at an economy-rate of 5.75.

Chahar knows what he is doing and is in sync with himself. A lot of the help has come from plying his trade in the Indian Premier League for Chennai Super Kings. He has gone on to become a strike bowler at the top for CSK skipper MS Dhoni and the performances have been telling. IPL 2019 was excellent for Chahar, who went on to claim 22 scalps in 17 matches. The year before that, he had amassed 10 wickets. Dhoni is the main reason behind Chahar’s success. His knowledge is unmatched and IPL has been his forte.

To transfer that positive energy for someone like Chahar into T20Is is something remarkable. He has an excellent range of skills and is someone who derives from the surface rather than trying too hard. He is a thinking bowler and smart to handle the big stage. Now when India are without Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar in T20Is, Chahar has become the leader. When the two return and lead the attack for the T20 World Cup next year, Chahar will give them immense support and form a deadly trio. Till then we hope he picks up the ante and continues to deliver.

News Cricket

Ahmed Shehzad rejects comparison with Umar Akmal

Staff Writer Updated: 11 November, 2019, 1:55 PM IST


Ahmed Shehzad was given another opportunity to cement his place in the national side, but his display in the T20Is against Sri Lanka failed to convince selectors. The right hand batsman managed just 17 runs and was axed for the third match. He has opened up about his failures and urged his critics to be kind towards him. Ahmed also feels that it is not right to compare him Umar Akmal.

“I cannot give excuses. I cannot say that I only got two matches and someone else got five of 10. I will try to do more next time whenever I get the chance,” Shehzad was quoted saying by GeoTV.

“I got two chances. I think one should be prepared enough to avail whatever chances that come their way, be it one or two,” he said.

“I believe that the amount of hard work I put in in the last two years, I had never done it in my entire life. It was unfortunate. I tried but it did not happen. Fair enough. Maybe God wants some more hard work from me,” added Shehzad.

He was particularly miffed with his comparison to Umar Akmal.

“He has his own life, I have mine. I request that we are not get lumped together as a duo. I should be judged on what I do and he on his conduct. It would also be unfair on him if I were to make a mistake but the blame was to fall on him,” he said.