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October 24, 2020
Cricket Sports

Cricket Buzz: NZ name spin quartet for Sri Lanka tour

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New Zealand spinner Mitchell Santner (right) has been named in the Test squad after 18 months on the sideline

IMAGE: New Zealand spinner Mitchell Santner (right) has been named in the Test squad after 18 months on the sideline. Photograph: ICC/File

Mitchell Santner, who last played a Test in December 2017, returned to the longest format as one of the four frontline spinners in the New Zealand squad for next month’s two-match series in Sri Lanka.

The left-arm tweaker is a regular in the shorter forms of the game for the Black Caps — finalists in the last two 50-over World Cups — but was sidelined with a knee problem after playing his 17th Test for New Zealand, against West Indies.


He will be joined by left-armer Ajaz Patel, off-spinner Will Somerville and leg-spinner Todd Astle in New Zealand’s 15-man squad for the Sri Lanka series, which will mark the beginning of the World Test Championship for both teams.

“Playing three spinners is an option in Sri Lankan conditions and we believe this group provides the best variations and skill mix on offer,” New Zealand coach Gary Stead said in a statement.

“England were playing three spinners against Sri Lanka on their successful visit there last year and the slow bowlers also dominated the previous series against South Africa.”

England blanked Sri Lanka 3-0 in a three-Test series on their visit to the island country last year.

Trent Boult, Tim Southee and Neil Wagner will be the fast bowlers for the Kane Williamson-led side while all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme would also provide an option with his medium pace.

The long-awaited Test championship, involving the nine top-ranked Test nations competing in a league till April 2021, has been designed to give more meaning to Test cricket.

The revamped Future Tours Programme (FTP) will see teams play three home-and-away series over a two-year cycle. The top two teams will then progress to a June 2021 final.

“It’s good timing for us after the World Cup,” Stead said, referring to their defeat to this month’s World Cup final loss to England on boundaries after a tied Super Over amidst heart-stopping drama.

“It was an incredible time for the team and the country, but we’re now excited to move forward as a group and sink our teeth into another opportunity.”

Squad: Kane Williamson (captain), Todd Astle, Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Jeet Raval, Will Somerville, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling

Australia steamroll England in 2nd T20I

Australia's Megan Schutt celebrates with her teammates after dismissing England's Lauren Winfield during the 2nd Vitality Women's IT20 at The 1st Central County Ground in Hove, England, on Sunday

IMAGE: Australia’s Megan Schutt celebrates with her teammates after dismissing England’s Lauren Winfield during the 2nd Vitality Women’s IT20 at The 1st Central County Ground in Hove, England, on Sunday. Photograph: Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images

Australia defeated England by seven wickets in the second T20I of the three-match series in the ongoing Women’s Ashes in Brighton-Hove on Sunday.

With this win, Australia have now gained a 12-2 lead in the series. The team had already secured the Ashes in the first T20I.

Chasing 122, openers Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney were able to stitch a brief partnership of 23 runs, but their stand was cut short by Katherine Brunt as she dismissed Healy (20) in the fourth over.


Australia were then reduced to 35/3 in the seventh over after Mooney (9) and Ashleigh Gardner (1) departed cheaply. Skipper Meg Lanning and Elysse Perry then joined each other in the middle and they mixed caution with aggression to take the team out of troubled waters.

The duo stitched together an unbeaten stand of 87 runs, taking the team over the line by seven wickets and with 13 balls to spare. Lanning and Perry remained unbeaten on 43 and 47 respectively.

Earlier, Australia displayed a spirited bowling performance to restrict England to just 121 runs in the allotted twenty overs.

England did not have an ideal start, losing their first three wickets with just 40 runs on the board. Amy Jones (0), Danielle Wyatt (9) and Natalie Sciver (8) all failed to leave an impression.

Tammy Beaumont and skipper Heather Knight put up a brief 38-run stand, but as soon as the partnership started to flourish, Jess Jonassen sent Beaumont (43) to the pavilion. Soon after Knight (17) was also dismissed by Georgia Wareham, reducing England to 80/5 in the 14th over.

England kept on losing wickets at regular wickets and as a result, the team just managed to go past the 120-run mark.

England and Australia next take on each other in the final T20I of the three-match series on July 31.

Brief Scores:Australia 122/3 (Elysse Perry 47*, Meg Lanning 43*, Sophie Ecclestone 1-18) bt England 121/8 (Tammy Beaumont 43, Sophie Ecclestone 17, Georgia Wareham 2-22) by seven wickets.

GT20 Canada: Brampton Wolves defeat Edmonton Royals by 27 runs

Shahid Afridi led-Brampton Wolves defeated Edmonton Royals by 27 runs in the ongoing Global T20 Canada on Sunday (local time).

Chasing 208, openers Richie Berrington and Navneet Dhaliwal provided a steady start to the Royals as they put up 44 runs on the board, but Wahab Riaz cut short both Berrington (28) and Dhaliwal (15) innings as he sent them back to the pavilion, reducing the team to 46/2 in the fifth over.

The side kept on losing wickets at regular intervals and at one stage they found themselves at 94/5 in the 10th over. Mohammad Hafeez (5), Faf du Plessis (21), Ben Cutting (2) all failed to leave an impression.

Jimmy Neesham and Shadab Khan played useful knocks of 33 and 27 respectively, but it did not prove enough as the side lost the match by 27 runs.

Earlier, Shahid Afridi’s knock of 81 runs off just 40 balls enabled Wolves to post 207 runs on the board, after opting to bat first.

Openers George Munsey and Lendl Simmons provided a steady start at the top as they were able to score 43 runs together, but their stand was cut short as Cutting sent Munsey (20) back to the pavilion in the fifth over.

Colin Munro (9) and Simmons (59) fell soon after, and the team was reduced to 97/3 in the 11th over. After Simmons’ dismissal, Afridi came out to bat and he started hammering the bowlers from the very start.

He played an unbeaten knock of 81 runs, propelling the side past the 200-run mark.

Edmonton Royals will next face Montreal Tigers on July 31 whereas Brampton Wolves will take on Winnipeg Hawks on August 1.

Brief Scores:Brampton Wolves 207/5 (Shahid Afridi 81*, Lendl Simmons 59, Shadab Khan 3-34) defeat Edmonton Royals 180/9 (Jimmy Neesham 33, Richie Berrington 28, Zahoor Khan 3-21) by 27 runs.

GT20 Canada: Winnipeg Hawks defeat Vancouver Knights

Winnipeg Hawks chased down 209 runs in just 16 overs to defeat Vancouver Knights by seven wickets in the ongoing Global T20 Canada on Sunday.

Chasing 209, Hawks lost opener Shaiman Anwar (4) in the first over as he was sent back to the pavilion by Saad Bin Zafar. Coming into bat at number three, Umar Akmal (9) was dismissed early by Ali Khan, reducing Hawks to 15/2 in the second over.

Chris Lynn and JP Duminy retrieved the innings for Hawks as they kept on playing in an aggressive manner. The duo stitched together a partnership of 143 runs, taking the team to a position of safety.

Lynn (74) was finally sent back to the pavilion by Andile Phehlukwayo in the 11th over, but Duminy and Dwayne Bravo ensured team’s victory with 28 balls to spare. Duminy and Bravo remained unbeaten on 77 and 36 respectively.

Earlier, Knights batsmen enabled the side to post 208 runs in the allotted twenty overs, after being asked to bat first.

Openers Chris Gayle and Tobias Visee gave the team a steady start as they put up a 49-run stand, but their partnership was cut short by Rayad Emrit as he dismissed Visee (15). Gayle was sent back to the pavilion after playing a knock of 45 runs, reducing the team to 81/2 in the eighth over.

Chadwick Bolton (30), Rassie van der Dussen (39) and Shoaib Malik (28) all managed to go past the 25-run mark, and this enabled the team to go past the 180-run mark.

In the death overs, Rizwan Cheema and Phehlukwayo played cameos to take the team score past the 205-run mark.

Winnipeg Hawks will next face Toronto Nationals on July 29 whereas Vancouver Knights will take on Montreal Tigers on July 30.

Brief Scores: Winnipeg Hawks 210/3 (JP Duminy 77*, Chris Lynn 74, Ali Khan 1-41) defeat Vancouver Knights (Chris Gayle 45, Rassie van der Dussen 39, Rayad Emrit 3-40) by seven wickets.

Dhruv Chand Jurel to lead India colts in Youth Asia Cup

Uttar Pradesh’s young wicketkeeper-batsman Dhruv Chand Jurel will lead India U-19 in the upcoming Youth Asia Cup in Sri Lanka from September 3-15.

The All-India Junior Selection committee met in the UK to pick the India U-19 team for the Youth Asia Cup 2019 to be played in the island nation.

Squad: Dhruv Chand Jurel (C & WK), Suved Parkar, Thakur Tilak Varma, Nehal Wadhera, Arjun Azad, Shashwat Rawat, Varun Lavande, Salil Arora, Karan Lal, Atharva Ankolekar, Pankaj Yadav, Akash Singh, Sushant Mishra, Purnank Tyagi, Vidyadhar Patil.

Australia to start US$3.4 mn campaign to woo Indians ahead of T20 World Cups

Australia on Monday said it would start a US$3.4 million (Aus $ 5 million) advertisement campaign next month to woo the Indian tourists ahead of the next year’s ICC T20 World Cups for both men and women.

Australia will host the ICC T20 World Cups for both men and women in 2020.

Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham said the new campaign would be used to increase Australia’s broader destination appeal in India.

“India was already Australia’s fastest growing visitor market, worth about 1.7 billion Australian dollar each year and that the new campaign would be used for marketing activities to drive visitation to both the women’s and men’s tournaments, as well as increase Australia’s broader destination appeal in India,” Birmingham said.

Noting major sporting events have far reaching impacts on tourism, he said they would be a significant drivers of visitors demand. 

“We know from research that major sporting events have far reaching impacts and are significant drivers of visitor demand, with 16 per cent of all international visitors attending a sporting or cultural event during their trip. These visitors are also known to stay longer and spend more than the average international traveller,” Birmingham said.

The Sports sector is estimated to deliver around 50 billion Australian dollars a year in direct economic, productivity and volunteering benefits to Australia and also help to grow businesses and to drive investment for the country.

Highlighting the visitation forecast was to grow four-fold to reach nearly 1.2 million by 2035 from India, the minister said: “The recently released India Economic Strategy specifically identified the need for increased tourism marketing activity in India to ensure the market reaches its full potential.”

“These World Cups represent the perfect opportunity to encourage Indians to book a flight to Australia to cheer on their team from cities and stadiums all over the country, while also taking the time to explore our wonderful tourism offerings,” he said.

Minister for Sport Richard Colbeck said the ICC T20 World Cup 2020 would shine a spotlight on the nation as a global leader in sport and major events.

“Securing major sporting events for Australia is crucial for nurturing our rich sporting culture,” Colbeck said, adding that such elite events invigorate and unite the industry from the grassroots level up and encourage all Australians to get active and fit.

“The ICC T20 World Cup 2020 is no exception. More than one million fans are expected to attend this significant event, which will be played as two standalone tournaments for women and men,” he said.

“This will ensure that each tournament receives maximum exposure and will allow Australians the rare opportunity to enjoy world-class cricket right on their doorstep throughout the year; while continuing to advance cricket as a sport for women and girls and inspiring the next generation of kids across Australia to play cricket,” he added.

Colbeck said the sports sector is estimated to deliver around 50 billion Australian dollars a year in direct economic, productivity and volunteering benefits and also help to grow businesses and to drive investment for Australia. 

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