Cricket World Cup 2019: Key players to watch out in Afghanistan-Bangladesh clash

Agencies
June 24, 2019

Southampton, Jun 24: After giving a tough fight to India in the last match, Afghanistan will look to register their maiden victory when they lock horns with Bangladesh on Monday at Hampshire Bowl in Southampton.

On June 22, Afghanistan lost to India by 11 runs after they nearly pulled off a stunning upset against the Men in Blue.

The team is yet to win any game and are languishing at the bottom of the points table.

On the other hand, Bangladesh have had a decent start to their World Cup campaign, winning two games so far but lost three.

Their match against Sri Lanka was abandoned due to rain. They currently hold the sixth position in the tournament standings.

The Bangla Tigers displayed a spirited performance in their last match against Australia while chasing a huge target of 382. Although they lost by 48 runs, their batting performance was lauded.

Here are the key players to watch out during the Afghanistan-Bangladesh clash:

Shakib Al Hasan

Shakib moved to the top in the ICC ODI rankings for all-rounders last month. The 32-year-old has been in sensational form in this World Cup as he is the second highest run-scorer in the tournament so far. The left-hander has scored 425 runs in the World Cup till now.

Shakib's innings in the current World Cup are -- 41, 124, 121, 64 and 75. Apart from his batting, he also bagged five wickets.

Rashid Khan

The 20-year-old Rashid leads Afghanistan's spin bowling attack. He entered the World Cup at the back of 17 wickets in this year's IPL tournament.

Rashid returned with the figures of 2-17 against Sri Lanka.

Soumya Sarkar

Of late, the left-handed batsman has been in exceptional form for Bangladesh. The opener has provided quickfire start to the team. He along with Tamim Iqbal has provided the team with a solid foundation.

Sarkar scored 42 runs off just 30 balls in Bangladesh's first match in the World Cup against South Africa. The 26-year-old has become a lynchpin of the team and the side's hopes will rely on him in the match against Afghanistan too.

Mohammad Nabi

Nabi strengthens Afghanistan's bowling attack as the 34-year-old provides experience to the squad. He bagged four wickets against Sri Lanka.

The Afghan all-rounder can also add some runs with a bat when required by the team. He nearly helped his side to chase India's score of 225.

Nabi has scalped six wickets so far in the tournament.

Gulbadin Naib

The Afghan skipper possesses dual ability of bowling as well as batting and is a vital member of the squad. He can bat in the lower order and is also a regular bowler of the team.

Naib returned with the figure of 2-51 against India. He has seven wickets to his name in the ongoing World Cup.

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Agencies
February 27,2021

India vs England: Motera likely to escape ICC 'Red Eye' as final Test pitch  promises to be batting beauty | Hindustan Times

London, Feb 27: The Motera track may have received a lot of flak after the pink ball Test ended inside two days but it is unlikely to attract any severe sanctions from the game's governing body ICC with the pitch for the final game set to be a batting beauty.

With India 2-1 up in the four-Test series and needing a draw to qualify for the World Test Championship final at Lord's from June 18-22, another turner is currently out of question as the home team will be aiming to take minimal risks as far as the track is concerned.

"Expect a good hard surface which will be firm and even bounce. It will be a batting beauty and since its a traditional red ball match, one can expect a very high scoring contest here from March 4-8," a senior BCCI official privy to the developments told PTI on conditions of anonymity.

Also the BCCI bigwigs along with the team management understands the fact that another dust bowl won't augur well for the new venue which is expected to host a lot of important matches during IPL as well as ICC T20 World Cup.

"If there are two matches played at the same venue, you can't hold one result in isolation. Let the final Test be over and then only based on match referee Javagal Srinath's report can ICC decide its course of action. Also as of now, the England team hasn't lodged any official complaint," the BCCI official said.

If there has been one good and one bad pitch at the same venue, the ICC is unlikely to take any action. While India would be happy with a 3-1 margin, they will not require a result oriented turner as a draw would suffice their purpose.

Also the Indian team management doesn't want to prepare a track that can ideally backfire on them in a very high-stake game of cricket.

"The pink ball Test went well because it was more about the ball and the way it skidded rather than the pitch which many English former greats are panning. It was straight deliveries that they couldn't counter. But having said that these kind of tracks have a tendency to backfire and BCCI is well aware of that," he said.

The team combination for the next Test will be an interesting one after Jasprit Bumrah was released from the squad due to personal reasons.

Mohammed Siraj has a better chance than Umesh Yadav of being Ishant Sharma's new ball partner, while it is expected that all three spinners will be automatic picks.

Washington Sundar's superior batting skills might come in very handy in the middle order for the last Test match.

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Agencies
March 4,2021

sindhu-world.jpg

Basel, Mar 4: Indian shuttler PV Sindhu got off to a winning start in the Swiss Open as she defeated Neslihan Yigit of Turkey here on Wednesday.

Sindhu secured a 21-16, 21-19 win over Yigit in the match to progress to the second round. She started off brilliantly in the first game, taking a 10-5 lead but her opponent managed to end the lead, with scores reading 11-11.

Sindhu then again took a lead and then maintained it throughout, winning the first game 21-16. In the second game, Yigit gave a tough competition to Sindhu but the latter held her nerves and went on to win the game.

Earlier in the day, the Indian men's doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty started their campaign on a high as they outclassed Scottish pair Christopher Grimley and Matthew Grimley in the first round of the Swiss Open.

Rankiredddy and Chirag won the hard-fought first set 21-18 but went down in the second essay as the Scottish pair fired an array of shots to diffuse the Indian attack.

The Indian pair in the third set took a lead early and then maintained a gap throughout the set to clinch the match comfortably 21-18, 19-21, 21-16.

Also, Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth defeated compatriot Sameer Verma in the first round of the ongoing Swiss Open here on Wednesday. Srikanth secured an 18-21, 21-18, 21-11 win over Verma to progress to the next round of the tournament.

However, HS Prannoy crashed out of the tournament after losing to Dutch badminton player Mark Caljouw 21-19, 9-21, 21-17. 

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Agencies
February 21,2021

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Christchurch, Febr 21: Australia's Aaron Finch said that going unsold at the recent Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 Player Auction was not unexpected.

"It would have been nice to be playing again. It's a wonderful competition to be a part of but it wasn't unexpected that I wasn't picked up, to be honest. I'd prefer to be playing cricket, but a little bit of time at home won't be the worst thing," Cricket.com.au quoted Finch as saying.

In the last edition of the IPL, Finch played for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and scored 268 runs from his 12 innings. Last month, the batsman was released from the squad before he went unsold at the IPL 2021 Player Auction which was held on February 18.

Australia are currently preparing to take on New Zealand in a five-match T20I series, starting from Monday at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch. Finch said he has been working on a few technical things.

"I've been working a few technical things; trying to get a little bit less weight on my front foot. At times I can get a little bit flat footed and my feet get planted then I struggle to move again - I have my initial movement then I get a little bit stuck," he said.

"I've talked a lot and worked a fair bit with Andrew McDonald, who I go back to every time things don't seem quite right and he seems to sort it out pretty quick. It's been nice to have a good chunk of training and focusing on a few little technical changes," Finch added.

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