Latham ton puts New Zealand in solid position against England

Agencies
November 29,2019

Hamilton, Nov 29: Tom Latham's unbeaten hundred and his century stand with Ross Taylor laid a solid foundation for New Zealand before rain brought an early end to day one of the second Test against England in Hamilton on Friday.

Latham was on 101 when the rain swept in just three deliveries after the resumption of play from the tea break.

It was the left-handed opener's 11th century and lifted him to equal sixth on the New Zealand century-makers list headed by Kane Williamson with 20.

Williamson, however, was off his best this innings when he was dismissed for four in a rocky start for New Zealand after Jeet Raval was removed for five.

But from two for 39, Latham and Taylor put on 116 for the third wicket when Taylor went for 53 to have New Zealand three for 155.

All three wickets were to catches by England captain Joe Root at first slip.

Ben Stokes, at second slip, did not have such safe hands and dropped Latham on 66.

Adding to Stokes' worries, he felt pain in his left knee after bowling two overs and will be assessed overnight to see whether he can bowl again during the innings.

Taylor also received a let-off which proved costly for England when he was hit on the pads by Stuart Broad and given out.

After conferring with Latham, Taylor appeared to believe there was a ball direction issue and sought a review.

TV umpire Bruce Oxenford overturned the decision when slow-motion video replays detected a faint sound after the ball passed the bat but had not reached the pads.

Oxenford believed it could only have come from an inside edge which Taylor did not feel and overturned the dismissal.

A relieved Taylor batted on to bring up his 32nd Test half-century with a four and was dismissed on the next ball.

Root won the toss and put New Zealand in to bat, citing Seddon Park's history of favouring the side bowling first.

But after the cheap wickets of Raval and Williamson, it was the batting of Latham and Taylor that dominated for nearly 34 overs.

Latham has 15 fours in his 101 off 164 deliveries while Taylor faced 100 balls for his half-century which included eight boundaries.

Woakes, brought in to give England five seamers at the expense of spinner Jack Leach, had figures of two for 41 while Stuart Broad had one for 33.

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Emirates Cricket Board receives official clearance from BCCI to host IPL 2020

Agencies
August 11,2020

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Dubai, Aug 11: The Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) on Tuesday confirmed that it has obtained official clearance from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to host the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL).

The 13th edition of the IPL will be played in the UAE from September 19-November 10 and the tournament will run for 53 days.

"We feel extremely privileged to host what could be considered the pinnacle event of our favourite sport. The magnitude of being in a position to bring the IPL to the vast cricket-loving global community, during current events which have greatly impacted our daily lives, is one we take with extreme importance," Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan, Cabinet Member and Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence and Chairman of the Emirates Cricket Board said in an official statement.

"This is undoubtedly the highest-profile cricketing-event to be held in the UAE and our team will continue to support all facets (of the tournament) and work toward delivering a successful event for the enjoyment of all sports-fans; here in the UAE, in India and across the world," he added.

The tournament will be played across three venues in the UAE -- Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, and Dubai.

"The UAE is well-versed in delivering successful events - sporting and lifestyle - and we remain in very close contact with the BCCI, IPL committees, the UAE Government and Ministries, our Health Authority, as well as many other entities, who are all experts in their respective fields and it is our collective intent that the tournament is played in a safe, enjoyable environment. We extend our sincere thanks to everyone who has worked tirelessly to bring the 'IPL 2020' to the UAE," added Al Nahayan.

On Monday, IPL chairman Brijesh Patel had confirmed that the board has got government approval to go ahead with the IPL in the UAE.

Both the afternoon and evening matches will be played half-an-hour earlier than usual.

"IPL 2020 will be played from September 19 and the final will be played on November 10, 2020. The 53-day tournament will witness 10-afternoon matches starting at 15:30 IST while the evening matches will start at 19:30 IST," the BCCI release had stated.

Last week, BCCI and Vivo had also suspended the title sponsorship rights for this year's IPL.

There has been a huge outcry for boycotting Chinese products after 20 Indian Army personnel, including a Colonel, were killed in the violent face-off between Indian and Chinese troops in June.

For the first time, the finals of the IPL will be played on a weekday (Tuesday).

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Don't know why people compared me with Warne, says Anil Kumble

News Network
July 25,2020

New Delhi, Jul 25: Former India spinner Anil Kumble said that he has never understood why people compared him with Australia's Shane Warne.

Kumble was doing an Instagram live session with former Zimbabwe pacer Pommie Mbangwa and it was then that the spinner also talked about being the third-highest wicket-taker in Test cricket.

"It feels really wonderful to finish with these many wickets. I never bothered about statistics or what my average should be, I wanted to bowl the whole day and be the one to take wickets. To finish as the third-highest wicket-taker in Tests alongside Murali and Warne is very special. All three of us played in the same era, there were a lot of comparisons, I do not know why people compared me with Warne. Warne was someone really different and he was on a different plane," Kumble told Mbangwa during the interaction.
"These two guys could spin the ball on any surface so it became really difficult for me when they started comparing me with Warne and Murali. I learnt a lot by watching them both bowl," he added.

The Indian spinner announced his retirement from international cricket in 2008. He finished with 619 wickets in the longest format of the game.

He has the third-highest number of wickets in Tests, only behind Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan (800) and Australia's Shane Warne (708).

Kumble is the second bowler in the history of international cricket after England's Jim Laker to take all ten wickets in an innings of a Test match.

He had achieved the feat against Pakistan in 1999 at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi. Kumble had bowling figures of 10-74 from 26.3 overs in the second innings of the Test match.
Kumble will be coaching Kings XI Punjab in the Indian Premier League (IPL). 

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Indian Test squad may be asked to quarantine in Adelaide before Australia series

News Network
July 21,2020

Melbourne, Jul 21: Cricket Australia's chief executive Nick Hockley has said that the Indian players and staff will most likely be asked to face two weeks of quarantine before the four-match Test series.

This scenario will bring the Adelaide Oval and its newly constructed hotel firmly into view as the sort of biosecure bubble, ESPNCricinfo reported.

India and Australia are slated to face each other in a four-match Test series, which is to begin from December 4 at Brisbane.

"The two-week quarantine is pretty well-defined. What we are working on is making sure that even within that quarantine environment, the players have got the absolute best training facilities, so that their preparation for the matches is as optimal as it can possibly be," ESPNCricinfo quoted Hockey as saying.

"Certainly the fact that the Adelaide Oval has a hotel. It does provide a facility not dissimilar to Old Trafford or Ageas Bowl where the hotels are integrated into the venue," he added.

Hockley also said that an exacting standard of biosecurity and testing would be applied before the series against India as the coronavirus cases are spiking in the subcontinent.

"It's widely known and it's unlikely that international travel restrictions would have lifted by the time that India will be due to come into the country. Clearly there will be testing regimes. We will be able to test people before that they get on to the plane and it is the nature of the situation of making sure we have the quarantine arrangements in line with government and health authority protocols," Hockley said.

"The key thing for the players is that there's regular testing and that we appropriately quarantine them when they come in and all of those plans are currently in development," he added.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Monday announced the postponement of the T20 World Cup 2020 slated to be held in Australia from October 18-November 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Following the announcement, the BCCI is likely to go ahead with the Indian Premier League (IPL) in the October-November window. However, it is known where the T20 tournament will be played as cases continue to rise in India.
"I think the BCCI has made no secrets that they are considering what that means for the IPL. For us, it's about getting a bit of an understanding and certainty around what that means. Clearly, in a normal course, some of our best players are obviously top picks for those IPL teams," Hockley said.

"It's a bit premature to speculate on that. We need to understand what the plans are if any and once we understand that we will make decisions accordingly," he added.

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