GAMBHIR CALLS ANIL KUMBLE ‘GREATEST MATCH-WINNER’, LAXMAN RECALLS HIS DREAM SPELL AGAINST PAKISTAN - The Daily Guardian
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GAMBHIR CALLS ANIL KUMBLE ‘GREATEST MATCH-WINNER’, LAXMAN RECALLS HIS DREAM SPELL AGAINST PAKISTAN

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As the country celebrates the 22nd anniversary of Kumble taking all ten wickets in a single Test innings, Gautam Gambhir on Sunday labelled the spinner as the “greatest match-winner” India ever had.

In a video shared by BCCI on Twitter, Gambhir replied: “The greatest match-winner India ever had! Take a bow, legend! @anilkumble1074.” It was on February 7, 1999, that Anil Kumble became just the second bowler in the history of cricket to take all ten wickets in an innings of a Test match.

Kumble achieved the feat against Pakistan at Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium, now known as Arun Jaitley cricket stadium in Delhi during the second Test of the two-match series.

India had set Pakistan a target of 420 runs in the match and the visitors got off to a steady start as openers Shahid Afridi and Saeed Anwar put on 101 runs for the first wicket. It was then Kumble who came into the attack and wreaked havoc on the Pakistani batting line-up. The spinner first dismissed Afridi (41) in the 25th over. After the right-handed batter’s dismissal, India kept on taking wickets through Kumble, and Pakistan was reduced to 128/6 in no time. Kumble then kept on taking wickets at regular intervals and he got his tenth scalp in the 61st over after dismissing Wasim Akram.

This effort enabled India to register a win by 212 runs, and Kumble became the second bowler after England’s Jim Laker to take all ten wickets in a single Test inning. Kumble finished with the bowling figures of 10-74 from 26.3 overs.

In the meantime, former India batsman V.V.S. Laxman on Sunday termed it as one of the most memorable days of his career and called it a “dream spell” by the leg-spinner to demolish Pakistan batting line-up.

“One of the most memorable days in my career. What a dream spell from the champion to demolish a good Pakistan lineup. @anilkumble1074 left everyone of us spellbound. #legend,” Laxman replied on BCCI’s video on Twitter.

A legend of the game, Kumble had 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 (619) in Tests, only behind Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan (800) and Australia’s Shane Warne (708).

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ISL 7: Jamshedpur hold on to sixth spot after edging Bengaluru in five-goal thriller

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Goa [India], February 25 (ANI): It was a thrilling game of two halves but Jamshedpur FC came out on top as they survived a second-half onslaught to beat Bengaluru FC 3-2 in their last Indian Super League (ISL) game at the Tilak Maidan Stadium on Thursday.
With both sides playing for the sixth spot, JFC held on to the win despite a spirited second-half show from Bengaluru, who finished seventh.
Goals from Stephen Eze (16′), Seiminlen Doungel (34′), and David Grande (41′) put JFC up at the break before Bengaluru responded through goals from Francisco Gonzalez (62′) and Sunil Chhetri (71′).
Jamshedpur were all over Bengaluru in the opening half. They constantly caused problems for Bengaluru’s inexperienced defence and raced to a 3-0 lead at the break — their first-ever in ISL history. Bengaluru’s defence had been culpable of starting poorly — only Odisha have conceded more goals in the first half this season — and the Blues crumbled under pressure, yet again.

Eze, who scored the winner in the reverse fixture, opened the scoring for JFC through a free-kick. The defender converted Aitor Monroy’s cross at the far post after Bengaluru keeper Lalthuammawia Ralte failed to clear his lines.
Winter signing Doungel soon joined the party, netting his maiden goal for JFC and also the season’s first. Farukh Choudhary squared the ball to Doungel, who skipped past his marker before drilling his shot at the far corner from an acute angle.

JFC continued their ruthlessness in front of the goal and found the net once again from a set-piece just before the closure of the first half. Monroy whipped a teasing cross in the box for the unmarked Grande, who nodded home past Ralte with ease. Bengaluru made two changes at the break — with Gonzalez and Erik Paartalu coming on. Those substitutions would prove handy as Naushad Moosa’s side dominated the second half.
They received a way back as Gonzalez cut short their deficit with a strong finish. JFC’s defence failed to deal with Parag Shrivas’ throw-in and the Spaniard pounced on the loose ball, burying his header into the net.
There was more to come from BFC and it was their talisman, Chhetri, who pulled another back with a landmark 100th goal. Harmanjot Khabra delivered a powerful cross in the box for Chhetri, who got ahead of Eze and scored a thumping header. JFC’s defence held firm in the dying minutes as they completed the double over their opponents. (ANI)

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Ind vs Eng: Rohit hails Ashwin, Axar after their heroics in 3rd Test

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], February 25 (ANI): India batsman Rohit Sharma on Thursday heaped praise on Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel after the spinners guided the team to an impressive win over England in the third Test.
Riding on brilliant spells of spin bowling from Axar and Ashwin, India registered a comprehensive 10-wicket win over England in the pink-ball Test here at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Thursday to go 2-1 up in the four-match series.
Chasing 49 for a win, India raced home with 10 wickets in the bag as Rohit (25) and Shubman Gill (15) looked in a hurry to finish proceedings. Rohit finished it off in style by sending Root into the mid-wicket stands. The win has taken India one step closer to the final of the World Test Championship.
But the star of the show was hometown boy Axar as he finished with 11 wickets in the game (six in the first innings and five in the second). Senior partner Ashwin wasn’t to be left too far behind as he picked four wickets to finish with 7 in the game and also reached the 400-wicket mark in Test cricket.
“Ashwin is probably one of our match-winners, if not ‘The match-winner’ of the Indian cricket history. He is definitely a match-winner for us and has won so many games for us. Big congratulations to him to get to that milestone. It must be a great feeling for him as well. To do that in his 77th Test match, it is a great feat. Hats off to him and not to forget his contribution with the bat in the series as well. He has done remarkably well and obviously, the team relies on him a lot,” Rohit said in the post-match press conference.
Praising Axar, Rohit said: “Axar was simply brilliant… He understands the conditions really well. He knows how to vary the pace and what lines to bowl which is very, very important as a bowler to understand your line, to the right-handers and to the left-handers is very important. And what he did brilliantly in this game was that he made the batters play most of the balls which is always important on a wicket like that… It all goes to his skill set and he has got a solid skillset.”
With this defeat, England is out of the race for a place in the final of the ICC World Test Championship. England, who are now 2-1 down in the four-match series, needed to win the four-match series 3-1 to play the final against New Zealand. England has dropped to 64.1 percentage points on the points table, which is now led by India with 71 percentage points.
New Zealand is assured of a place in the final with 70 percentage points. India need to either win or draw the last Test to stay ahead of Australia, who is in third place with 69.2 percentage points. (ANI)

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Fans came to watch Kohli face Anderson, almost feels like they have been robbed, says Root

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], February 25 (ANI): England skipper Joe Root said he feels like the spectators have almost been “robbed” as they came to watch Virat Kohli face the likes of James Anderson and Stuart Broad but watched him taking wickets instead.
During the third Test between India and England, spinners dominated the whole game. England’s experienced duo Anderson and Broad failed to scalp even a single wicket in the match while Root managed to pick five wickets in the first innings.
Riding on brilliant spells of spin bowling from Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin, India registered a comprehensive 10-wicket win over England in the pink-ball Test to go 2-1 up in the four-match series.
“Let’s not hide away from the fact that we have been outplayed and we have to accept that. It is a real shame because it is a fantastic stadium and 60,000 people came to watch the brilliant, iconic Test match. I feel for them, they came to watch Virat Kohli face Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad or Jack Leach, and watch Ashwin against our top guys like Ben Stokes,” Root said in the post-match press conference.
“And it almost feels like they have been robbed, they instead got to see me getting wickets which should not be the case. The fact of the matter is that it was challenging for both teams and as players, all we can do is play with what is in front of you. Credit to India, they outplayed us on that wicket,” he added.
Commenting on the pitch, Root said it is not for players to decide whether it is fit for purpose or not and it is something that International Cricket Council (ICC) has to decide.
“I think that this surface, it’s a very challenging one, is a very difficult one to play on. It is not for players to decide whether it is fit for purpose or not and that is upto the ICC. As players we are going to try and counter what is in front of us as best as we can,” he said.
Chasing 49 for a win, India raced home with 10 wickets in the bag as Rohit Sharma (25) and Shubman Gill (15) looked in a hurry to finish proceedings. Rohit finished it off in style by sending Root into the mid-wicket stands. The win has taken India one step closer to the final of the World Test Championship.
But the star of the show was hometown boy Axar as he finished with 11 wickets in the game (six in the first innings and five in the second). Senior partner Ashwin wasn’t to be left too far behind as he picked four wickets to finish with 7 in the game.
With this defeat, England is out of the race for a place in the final of the ICC World Test Championship. England, who are now 2-1 down in the four-match series, needed to win the four-match series 3-1 to play the final against New Zealand. England has dropped to 64.1 percentage points on the points table, which is now led by India with 71 percentage points.
New Zealand is assured of a place in the final with 70 percentage points. India need to either win or draw the last Test to stay ahead of Australia, who is in third place with 69.2 percentage points. (ANI)

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Ind vs Eng: Root feels pink-ball had ‘quite a big factor’ on the wicket

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], February 25 (ANI): After suffering a humiliating 10-wicket defeat in the third Test against India, England skipper Joe Root said he was “bitterly disappointed” and feels that the pink-ball played “quite a big factor” on that wicket.
Riding on brilliant spells of spin bowling from Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin, India registered a comprehensive 10-wicket win over England in the pink-ball Test here at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Thursday to go 2-1 up in the four-match series.
“Honestly, I think that ball had quite a big factor in this wicket. I think the plastic quoting on it and the hardness of the seam compared to the red SG ball, meant that it almost gathered pace off the wicket if it did not hit the seam… and because of the nature that it gathered pace off the wicket, I think that had a big part to play in things. Credit to Axar in particular, he utilized and exploited that exceptionally well,” Root said in the post-match press conference.
In the end, Root winning the toss and batting first meant nothing as the visitors were completely outplayed in the game. England were all out on 112 in the first innings and Root said they need to find ways to score runs on such wickets.
“It was obviously a very challenging surface. We are bitterly disappointed and feel like we missed opportunity in the first innings. When we look at the position we were in, 70 odd runs for two, and in hindsight, we would have gotten to 200 and that would have been a really good score on that wicket. It is something that we got to learn from and get better and need to keep finding ways to score runs on surfaces like these,” he said.
Chasing 49 for a win, India raced home with 10 wickets in the bag as Rohit Sharma (25) and Shubman Gill (15) looked in a hurry to finish proceedings. Rohit finished it off in style by sending Root into the mid-wicket stands. The win has taken India one step closer to the final of the World Test Championship.
But the star of the show was hometown boy Axar as he finished with 11 wickets in the game (six in the first innings and five in the second). Senior partner Ashwin wasn’t to be left too far behind as he picked four wickets to finish with 7 in the game.
With this defeat, England is out of the race for a place in the final of the ICC World Test Championship. England, who are now 2-1 down in the four-match series, needed to win the four-match series 3-1 to play the final against New Zealand. England has dropped to 64.1 percentage points on the points table, which is now led by India with 71 percentage points.
New Zealand is assured of a place in the final with 70 percentage points. India need to either win or draw the last Test to stay ahead of Australia, who is in third place with 69.2 percentage points. (ANI)

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Ind vs Eng: Pitch was nice to bat on, there were no demons, says Rohit

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], February 25 (ANI): After registering an emphatic ten-wicket win over England in the third Test at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Rohit Sharma on Thursday said that most batsmen from both teams got out on straight balls and it was not a case of pitch misbehaving a lot.
Riding on brilliant spells of spin bowling from Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin, India registered a comprehensive 10-wicket win over England in the pink-ball Test to go 2-1 up in the four-match series. In the end, English skipper Joe Root winning the toss and batting first meant nothing as the visitors were completely outplayed in the game.
India was bundled out for 145 in the first innings and Rohit Sharma was the top-scorer for the hosts as he played a knock of 66 runs with the help of 11 fours.
“To be honest, I did not do anything different, when you are playing on a pitch like that, you need to have intent and you need to look to score runs. You just cannot keep blocking. The oddball might turn, the oddball might just skid on the stumps if you play for the turn. It is important to keep that intent and try to use your feet and try to do as many things as possible to try and stay ahead of the bowlers. You just need to be slightly ahead of the bowlers at times and it is about finding ways to score runs,” said Rohit during a virtual press conference on Thursday.
“All I was trying to do was to look for ways to score runs. My intent was not to survive, my intent was to score runs while respecting the good balls. That’s all I tried to do. The pitch was interesting, the oddball was coming in and some were turning. When you bat on a wicket like this, you need to have a clear mindset. Pitch didn’t do anything, honestly speaking, if I can recollect, most of the batsmen got out on straighter deliveries, we also as a batting unit, made a lot of mistakes while batting. We also did not bat well in the first innings, the pitch did not have demons, there is nothing like that,” he added.
Further elaborating on his point, Rohit said: “It was a nice pitch to bat on, once you are in, you can score runs as you saw. You just need to apply yourself and keep concentrating in order to score runs. If you look at the Chennai Test match, the second Test, it was turning hell of a lot than it did here. A lot of the batters got runs there in the second Test, in this Test, we need to be honest to ourselves and accept that we did not bat well.”
“In Chennai, it had a lot more to offer than this, we batted well on that wicket. We learn from our mistakes, guys applied themselves, Ashwin got 100 in the second innings of the second Test, Ajinkya got 50, Virat got 60-odd. If you apply yourselves, you can score runs. We accept as a batting unit, that we did not bat as well we would have liked to in this Test. We just need to take it to ourselves and we need to get back to the drawing board,” he added.
Chasing 49 for a win, India raced home with 10 wickets in the bag as Rohit Sharma (25) and Shubman Gill (15) looked in a hurry to finish proceedings. Rohit finished it off in style by sending Root into the mid-wicket stands. The win has taken India one step closer to the final of the World Test Championship.
But the star of the show was hometown boy Axar as he finished with 11 wickets in the game (six in the first innings and five in the second). Senior partner Ashwin wasn’t to be left too far behind as he picked four wickets to finish with 7 in the game.
Interestingly, the off-spinner also became the second-fastest to 400 Test wickets during England’s second innings when he trapped Jofra Archer plumb in front. (ANI)

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Ind vs Eng, 3rd Test: Want the wicket to remain same for final Test, says Axar

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Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], February 25 (ANI): After guiding India to a comprehensive 10-wicket win in the third Test against England, Axar Patel said he would want the wicket to remain the same for the fourth and final Test of the series.
Axar finished with 11 wickets in the game (six in the first innings and five in the second). Senior partner Ashwin wasn’t to be left too far behind as he picked four wickets to finish with 7 in the game.
“When it happens, it feels so easy. I am not thinking much. I want to continue this form. I am happy that if I am not contributing with the bat, I am doing it with the ball. My strength is to bowl wicket-to-wicket and not give batsmen room,” Axar said after the match.
“The mindset of batters is they play out couple of maidens, they either go for a sweep or try to hit over the infield. They call me Wasim bhai (Wasim Akram) because they feel my arm ball is very lethal. Ajju Bhai (Ajinkya Rahane) called me that and Pant has picked it up. I would want this wicket to remain the same for the final Test as well as I am picking up wickets,” he added.
England is out of the race for a place in the final of the ICC World Test Championship after losing the third Test against India.
England, who are now 2-1 down in the four-match series, needed to win the four-match series 3-1 to play the final against New Zealand. England has dropped to 64.1 percentage points on the points table, which is now led by India with 71 percentage points.
New Zealand is assured of a place in the final with 70 percentage points. India need to either win or draw the last Test to stay ahead of Australia, who is in third place with 69.2 percentage points. (ANI)

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