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England cricketers likely to miss New Zealand Tests to play IPL knockouts

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Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], February 17 (ANI): England cricketers, who play more than one-format, including Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, and Jos Buttler are likely to miss the New Zealand Test series in June, due to a clash with this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) playoffs.
Stokes, Buttler, and Archer are an integral part of both IPL franchise Rajasthan Royals and England’s Test squad. The schedule of IPL is yet to be announced but the tournament is likely to begin in the second week of April.
Chris Woakes (Delhi Capitals), Jonny Bairstow (Sunrisers Hyderabad), and Sam Curran (Chennai Super Kings) could also be affected if their respective teams qualify for the play-offs.
With the England-New Zealand two-match Test series scheduled for the first two weeks of June, the players might miss the longest format fixtures due to quarantine protocols, if their sides qualify for the playoffs.
On Tuesday, the IPL through an email (seen by ESPNcricinfo) informed the franchises about the availability of cricketers from the top countries.
“In the event of ECB Selectors wishing to select a player for the 1st Test v New Zealand whose franchise has made it through to the knockout stages of the Tournament, but who is not featuring in the starting XI, the relevant franchise is requested to release such player early so that they can participate in the Test Match,” ESPNcricinfo quoted the IPL email as saying.
Meanwhile, the IPL 2021 Player Auction list was announced last week, with a total of 292 cricketers set to go under the hammer in Chennai on February 18.
The league, in a media advisory, said 1,114 cricketers had initially registered for the auction and the final list was pruned after the eight franchises submitted their shortlist of players.
INR 2 crore is the highest reserve price and two Indian players – Harbhajan Singh and Kedar Jadhav – and eight overseas players – Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, Shakib Al Hasan, Moeen Ali, Sam Billings, Liam Plunkett, Jason Roy, and Mark Wood have chosen to be slotted in the highest bracket.
As many as 12 players are in the auction list with a base price of INR 1.5 crore. Hanuma Vihari and Umesh Yadav are the two Indian players in the list of 11 cricketers with a base price of INR 1 crore.
A total of 164 Indian players, 125 overseas players, and 3 players from Associate Nations will be up for grabs in the IPL 2021 Player Auction in Chennai.
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) have the highest number of available slots, 13, followed by Kings XI Punjab (9), Rajasthan Royals (8), and Kolkata Knight Riders (8). Sunrisers Hyderabad (3) have the least amount of available spots. (ANI)

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Danny Ings out for three weeks due to injury, confirms Hasenhuttl

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Southampton [UK], March 8 (ANI): Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl has said that Danny Ings is likely to be absent for the remainder of this month’s fixtures due to injury.
The striker was replaced by Che Adams in the 13th minute during the match against Sheffield United on Saturday, and will now miss games against Manchester City, Brighton and AFC Bournemouth, with a return date expected to fall after March’s international break.
“I think it is a serious one but not too serious. I think three weeks it’ll be, expect him back after the international break,” the club’s official website quoted Hasenhuttl as saying when asked about Ings’s injury.
Southampton had secured a 2-0 win over Sheffield United in the match.
James Ward-Prowse had scored the opening goal of the match before Adams doubled the lead in the 49th minute. Southampton then defended well against Sheffield United and claimed three points from the game.
Southampton will next take on Premier League table-toppers Manchester City on March 10. (ANI)

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Pravin Jadhav, Deepika Kumari in Indian archery team for Tokyo Olympics

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New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): Three in men’s recurve Pravin Jadhav, Atanu Das, and Tarundeep Rai and three in women’s recurve Deepika Kumari, Ankita Bhakat, and Komolika Bari have made to the Indian Archery team for the Tokyo Olympics after the final selection trial (Trial 3) concluded on Monday at the Army Sports Institute in Pune.
The selection for the Olympic team on a points system took into consideration the scores of Trial 2 that took place in November 2020, the scores of this trial, and whether the archer had won an Olympic quota.
The men’s recurve team comprising of the above three archers had already won a quota at the 2019 Archery World Championships that were held in the Netherlands after winning a silver medal.
By winning this quota, they were eligible for single athlete quotas in the men’s individual recurve event as well.
Pravin Jadhav topped the trial held on Monday and was also in the overall first place, with this he will be playing his first-ever Olympics. Atanu Das came second while Tarundeep Rai finished overall third across all three criteria.
Tarundeep is a two-time former Olympian having represented India in 2004 and 2012 and will be playing his third Olympics in Tokyo.
Atanu Das who will be playing in his second Olympics after 2016, said, “I am very happy with the way the trial went and I am now confirmed for the Olympics. Have gone through a long process between the 2016 Olympics to now and have realised that the mental aspect of the game is very important. I am looking forward to perform at my best in both the individual and team events in Tokyo.”
Deepika Kumari who has already won an Olympic quota at the 2019 Asian Archery Championships, topped today’s trial. This will be Deepika’s third Olympics after 2012 and 2016. Ankita Bhakat came second while Komolika Bari came overall third.
The women’s recurve team is yet to win an Olympic quota and they will get an opportunity at the Final Team Qualification event scheduled to take place in Paris from June 18-21.
The trio of Deepika Kumari, Ankita Bhakat and Komolika Bari will represent India at that event and if they earn the quota will go on to represent India at the Olympics following the results of today’s trial. (ANI)

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Sathiyan, Sharath, Batra advance to 2nd round of WTT Star Contender Doha

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Doha [Qatar], March 8 (ANI): Ace paddlers Achanta Sharath Kamal, Sathiyan Gnanasekaran, and Manika Batra started their campaign at the WTT Star Contender Doha on a winning note and progressed into the second round of their respective singles categories on Monday.
The Melbourne Commonwealth Games champion Sharath Kamal was seen struggling in the initial stages of the game as he went down in the first game against Brian Afanador. The World No. 32 recovered well to gain the required momentum and gave no further chance to his opponent before sealing the match 8-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-1 against the Puerto Rican in the men’s singles first round. The Indian paddler will face World No. 16 Patrick Franziska of Germany in the next round on Tuesday.
World No. 37 Sathiyan was also trailing 0-2 in the match. However, he made a remarkable comeback with a counter-attacking display and pulled off a sensational come-from-behind 9-11, 7-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-4 victory against his French opponent Emmanuel Lebesson in the first round of men’s singles event. Sathiyan will now have a tough task in the next round as he is set to take on World No. 5 Japanese paddler Tomokazu Harimoto.
In the women’s singles opening round match, Commonwealth Games gold medallist Batra notched up a comfortable straight-set 11-5, 11-9, 11-9 victory against Chinese Taipei’s Hsein-Tzu Cheng to progress into the next round where she will face challenge from World No. 3 Mima Ito of Japan.
Sathiyan, Sharath Kamal and Batra have earned direct entries into the singles draw in the tournament. The second-round matches will take place on Tuesday.
Earlier in the first qualifying round of men’s singles, Anthony Amalraj suffered a 6-11, 11-9, 3-11, 7-11 defeat against Mizuki Oikawa of Japan while Harmeet Desai lost to Ukraine’s Yevhen Pryshchepa with 10-12, 9-11, 11-13, 9-11 scoreline. While in the women’s singles qualifiers, Sutirtha Mukherjee and Ahyika Mukherjee couldn’t progress into the third round. Sutirtha lost the hard-fought match 11-9, 11-6, 5-11, 9-11, 9-11 to Hayeong Kim of Korea andAyhika suffered a 5-11, 11-13, 7-11 loss against Irina Ciobanu of Romania. (ANI)

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Various roles for CSK in IPL 2020 made me better player: Sam Curran

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], March 8 (ANI): England all-rounder Sam Curran feels his experience of playing different roles in the Indian Premier League (IPL) for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) will help him in the upcoming T20 series against India.
Curran played all 14 games for CSK in the IPL 2020 and was the key player for the former champions. While the all-rounder scored 186 runs in last year’s IPL, he scalped 13 wickets at an average of 26.46.
The English all-rounder feels his stint with CSK has helped him become a much better player and the upcoming IPL will also be a perfect platform to prepare for the T20 World Cup scheduled later this.
“I have actually said before, I definitely feel I came back as a much better player from IPL last year in Dubai as I did various roles for CSK, got challenged in many different ways which I really enjoyed and I think it has benefited my game,” Curran said in a virtual press conference.
“Fantastic tournament, players love playing in, great crowds and India is an amazing place to play cricket. It’s great as a player to be in playing in IPL, especially with that T20 World Cup in India. It will be great preparation for us and I am really looking forward to it,” he added.
The 22-year-old cricketer will implement certain things in his game which learned during his stint with CSK in 2020.
“In IPL, you play against such quality international players and such quality oppositions. It’s nothing better than game time and in games where you under pressure, chasing targets, you defend targets. It’s a great tournament you love winning,” Curran said
“There are things I have learned in IPL that I will hopefully bring into the English setup but then again there are things in the English setup that I will bring into the IPL. They both complement each other,” he added.
India and England will face each other in the first T20I on Friday at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
“It’s great to be in the team if I do play on Friday, whatever role is given to me by coach and captain I will try and do my best. That’s what I pride myself on. I feel like I can adjust to different situations,” said Curran.
“So wherever I bat or ball and things like that, I will be going out there and show different skills of my game. Hopefully, I am in the team on Friday and it will be a great opportunity for me to cement my spot for the T20Is,” he added. (ANI)

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Emily Ramsey joins West Ham United Women from Manchester United on loan

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London [UK], March 8 (ANI): Emily Ramsey has joined West Ham United Women’s team until the end of the 2020/21 season, the club announced.
The club said that Ramsey has joined on an emergency loan basis after Mackenzie Arnold sustained an injury in training last week.
“West Ham United Women are pleased to formally announce the loan signing of Emily Ramsey until the end of the 2020/21 season,” the club said in a statement.
“The 20-year-old goalkeeper joins us on an emergency loan basis from Manchester United after Mackenzie Arnold sustained an injury in training last week,” it added.
Ramsey spent seven years at United’s centre of excellence before joining Liverpool in 2017. The England U21 international went on to rejoin the Red Devils for their inaugural season in the FA Women’s Super League and has since played two times for her hometown club.
She has also spent time out on loan at Sheffield United and represented England at U17 and U19 level.
“Everyone at West Ham United would like to welcome Emily to east London and wish her the best of luck for her time in Claret and Blue,” the statement read. (ANI)

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Sam Curran defends England’s rotation policy, says he’s raring to go for T20Is

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], March 8 (ANI): While former cricketers raised question over England’s rotation policy, all-rounder Sam Curran feels the rest given to a player is important as living in a bio-secure bubble is tough.
In the recently concluded Test series against India, England’s rotation policy came under severe criticism and the side has been accused of not prioritising the India Test series.
The rotation policy saw Jonny Bairstow being rested for the first two Tests against India, and he was a shadow of himself in the next two Tests that he played, as he joined Shane Warne in the list at the second spot for recording most ducks against India.
But Curran admitted that he feels refreshed for the white-ball series against India and the rest given to him has made the all-rounder raring to go for the upcoming T20Is.
“Definitely there has been a lot of stuff spoken about it (rotation policy). So I think as a player it’s been greatly beneficial, the bubbles are really tough from a players perspective. Being away for long periods, it’s nice coming back and I do feel really refreshed and raring to go for this white-ball series,” said Curran in a virtual press conference on Monday.
“I think it’s gonna be a great series and like you said there have been various players who had their break and I am sure guys might say similar things. One reacts to bubble in different ways and that’s why I think ECB has allowed us to get out and come back. It’s about keeping us mentally and physically fresh in that aspect. I appreciate the break that I was given,” he added.
Curran highlighted the long terms benefit of rotation policy while pointing out the big summer England is going to witness later this year.
“You have to look at the broader aspect, like there is a T20 World Cup, the Ashes, the big India summer when they tour England and obviously New Zealand’s Test now,” said Curran.
“I think it’s a really busy period and England are making sure they get it right in the long term, like to make sure we are playing a lot of cricket and not burning out at the same time,” he added.
India and England will face each other in the first T20I on Friday at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.
“Really nice to be back in India, obviously a great place to play cricket. I left Sri Lanka, had my break and it was nice to get home and see my family and loved ones. The travel issues extended my break a little bit. Really excited to be in India again,” said Curran.
Earlier, England head coach Chris Silverwood suggested that visitors might look to continue the rotation policy in the Ashes which is scheduled for later this year. (ANI)

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