Mind and art mattered more in hockey in our time but in modern hockey, physical strength is more important than mind. I am glad that despite all this, the way Indian players did in the FIH Pro Hockey League, beating powerful teams like Netherlands, Belgium and finished fourth. It raises hopes from our team in the Tokyo Olympics. At least this team deserves to reach the semi-finals. There are five players who played in the Rio Olympics in the team.
As far as the defence line of Harmanpreet, Rupendra, Surendra, Birender Lakra, are concerned they all are very experienced, many of them are capable to score goals through penalty corner. This time in the half line, we have Hardik, Manpreet, Vivek, Neelkant, Sumit and Vivek Sagar. I have watched these players very closely at the World Cup in Odisha. These players are also adept at keeping the ball in their possession. These players help the forward line and also pay attention to the defense behind it.
Shamsher Singh, Dilpreet Singh, Gurjant Singh, Lalit Upadhyay and Mandeep Singh are in the forward line. Everyone has to keep in mind that the forward line has the ability to attack goals intelligently. After winning gold in 1980 Moscow Olympics, Indian team attacks less because European players started playing very attacking hockey. That time, our emphasis was on defense. We started playing two center halves but with the change of time, hopes have risen. In an organized manner the forward line will have to counter attack. Australia along with New Zealand, Argentina, Japan and Spain are there in our pool. We should focus on climbing the ladder one by one.
While playing the first match, we have to think that this is our last match. The strategy of the team will be decided by the coach but also in the mind of every player. Strategy should be made according to the need. Our ‘W’ formation used to be attacking. Now I think playing with four forwards is more fruitful and effective. Players rotate very quickly today. Inner players also come to the rescue from behind. If anybody in team misses the ball, then our defense should be strong enough to make up for that mistake. This game should be full of cleverness. Players’ eyes should be alert all the time and have the ability to grow fast like a deer. Have a clear vision. Releasing the ball, strategy, combinations are all part of the game. I am sure that this team will definitely end the desolation of the last 40 years.
Writer is a former Olympian and played four World Cup and a son of great Dhyanchand
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AHMEDABAD, LUCKNOW TO BE NEW TEAMS IN IPL AS CVC CAPITAL AND RPSG WIN BIDS
Ahmedabad and Lucknow are the two new members of the Indian Premier League (IPL) family as it will now be a ten-team affair from the next season.
The bidding took place at the Taj Hotel in Dubai on Monday and it is the RP-Sanjiv Goenka Group (RPSG) (Lucknow) and CVC Capital Partners (Ahmedabad) who will join the cash-rich league as the new owners.
Speaking to ANI, a BCCI official confirmed this development.
The IPL’s first season was played in 2008, and ever since, the league has grown in stature and it is one of the most viewed competitions in the world.
Chennai Super Kings, Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kolkata Knight Riders, Delhi Capitals, SunRisers Hyderabad, Punjab Kings, and Rajasthan Royals have been with the league since its inception. The Hyderabad franchise was earlier named Deccan Chargers but it came to be known as SunRisers Hyderabad after a change in ownership.
There have been fourteen seasons of the IPL tournament. The fifteenth season promises to be like no other and viewership is all set to increase.
In 2010, two new fraNchises Pune Warriors India and Kochi Tuskers Kerala joined the league before the fourth season in 2011 and for a brief period, the league was played by ten teams.
One year later in November 2011, it was announced that Kochi Tuskers Kerala side would be terminated following it “breaching” the BCCI’s terms of conditions. Pune Warriors India had withdrawn from the IPL in 2013 over financial differences with the board.
But it is all set to be a 10-team affair again come 2022. The 2022 season will comprise ten teams and will have 74 matches, where each team will play seven home and seven away matches. ANI
Both powerplays were bad and decisive for India
India-Pakistan matches are always high voltage matches but this time, the Indian team was very good on paper but we lost the match in powerplay itself. Neither our batsmen played a good cricket in the batting powerplay nor the bowlers could get any wickets during this period. In fact, when we lost three wickets in the powerplay, Pakistan had tightened their grip on the match. Although after this, Virat Kohli tried to overcome this crisis by batting brilliantly but he could not get the kind of support that was expected from any batsman except Rishabh Pant.
This is a lesson for Team India which I will discuss sometime later but at the same time I would also say that trust your players. All our 11 players are match winners. In fact, when a team loses, questions arise about the abilities of the players. While it should not be so.
The truth is that we have not been able to perform to the best of our abilities. Questions are also being raised on the absence of the sixth bowler but I think when our frontline bowlers could not perform then why do we raise the question of the option of the sixth bowler. The truth is that both the powerplays were bad and decisive for India.
Saba Karim is a former cricketer who has played 34 ODIs as a wicketkeeper batsman for Team India. Views expressed are his own.
‘MAN-U WON’T MISS ANYTHING IF POGBA DOESN’T PLAY AGAIN’
Paul Scholes has slammed the “disrespectful” Paul Pogba after his horror showing against Liverpool on Sunday and stated that Manchester United “won’t miss anything” if the French midfielder doesn’t play again for the club.
Pogba had a horrendous afternoon as United were thrashed 5-0 by their arch-rivals at Old Trafford. Pogba’s performance against Liverpool was the final straw for Scholes, with a club legend telling Premier League Productions of his disappointment in a disruptive figure, as per goal.com: “Paul Pogba coming on to the pitch at half-time to try to help the team and maybe get a little respectability, tries to stand on the ball, tries to show how strong he is in the middle of the pitch… gives the goal away.”
“He probably will play [again] won’t he? But I don’t think they will be missing anything if he doesn’t,” he added.
Shami subjected to online abuse after India suffer defeat against Pak; former cricketers express support
India pacer Mohammed Shami is being subjected to online abuse after the Men in Blue suffered a defeat against arch-rival Pakistan in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.
As soon as India was defeated was Pakistan on Sunday, fans took to Instagram and Twitter to pass derogatory statements on Mohammed Shami. Pakistan defeated India by ten wickets and none of the Men in Blue bowlers were able to leave an impact as Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan took the bowling to the cleaners.
Indian skipper Virat Kohli also saw some unruly fan behaviour and the trolls have also not been kind to him, as he is also being criticised for his captaincy during the game.
Mohammad Rizwan and skipper Babar Azam put on a remarkable show on Sunday as Pakistan thrashed India by 10 wickets at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
Rizwan (79*) and Babar (68*) didn’t give any chance to India bowlers to come on top as the two batsmen dominated the proceedings. Pakistan chased down the target of 152 without losing a wicket as India looked clueless in their opening match.
“We didn’t execute properly. Credit where it’s due and Pakistan outplayed us today. They started brilliantly with the ball, and 3 wickets for 20 runs was not a good start. We needed wickets early but with the bat, they gave us absolutely no chances,” Kohli told host broadcaster Star Sports after the game ended.
“It played slow in the first half and hitting through the line was not that easy as it was in the second half, after 10 overs. We needed those 15-20 extra runs and for that, we needed a good start but Pakistan’s bowling didn’t allow us to get those extra runs,” he added.
CRICKETERS’ EXPRESS SOLIDARITY
Meanwhile, former and current cricketers like Virender Sehwag and Yuzvendra Chahal voiced support for the India speedster—who has been trolled viciously—on Monday.
“The online attack on Mohammad Shami is shocking and we stand by him. He is a champion and Anyone who wears the India cap has India in their hearts far more than any online mob. With you Shami. Agle match mein dikado jalwa,” Sehwag tweeted.
Master-blaster Sachin Tendulkar also expressed solidarity with Shami stating that he stands “behind Shami & Team India.” “When we support #TeamIndia, we support every person who represents Team India. @MdShami11 is a committed, world-class bowler. He had an off day like any other sportsperson can have. I stand behind Shami & Team India,” the former batter wrote in a tweet.
Former India pacer Irfan Pathan and all-rounder Yusuf Pathan on Monday condemned the online abuse of Shami following India’s defeat against Pakistan in the ongoing T20 World Cup.
Irfan said even he was a part of India vs Pakistan match earlier but was never “told to go to Pakistan”. “Even I was part of #IndvsPak battles on the field where we have lost but never been told to go to Pakistan! I’m talking about of few years back. THIS CRAP NEEDS TO STOP,” Irfan tweeted.
We love you @MdShami11# Shami,” spinner Harbhajan tweeted.
India spinner Yuzvendra Chahal also came out in support of Shami following the online abuse.”We are so proud of you @MdShami11 bhaiya,” Chahal tweeted.
Yusuf Pathan said one can criticise the cricketers but abusing someone following the defeat shouldn’t be done. “Criticising is fine but khiladiyon ko abuse nahi karna chahiye. Ye game hai, better team on that day won. Inhi cricketers ne India ko bohot matches jitaye hain pichle kuch saalon mein. Aur haar kar jeetne wale ko hi baazigar kehte hai na,” Yusuf tweeted.
This is the first time that India has lost a T20I by 10 wickets. Coincidentally, this is also the first time that Pakistan has won a T20I by 10 wickets. Kohli and the boys will next square off against New Zealand on Sunday, October 31 while Pakistan will take on New Zealand on Tuesday, October 26.
CRICKETERS’ EXPRESS SOLIDARITY
We love you @MdShami11# Shami,” spinner Harbhajan tweeted.
STOKES ‘READY FOR AUSTRALIA’, ADDED TO ENGLAND ASHES TEAM
Durham all-rounder Ben Stokes on Monday was added to the England men’s Test squad for the Ashes tour of Australia.
Stokes, who has been given the all-clear by his consultant and the ECB medical team to resume training following his second operation on a fractured left index finger, will depart with the Test specialists and the Lions on November 4.
The 30-year-old is ready to return to competitive cricket following his break from the game at the end of July to prioritise his mental wellbeing.
“I had a break to prioritise my mental wellbeing and I got my finger sorted,” said Stokes in an official release issued by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).
“I am looking forward to seeing my mates and being on the field with them. I’m ready for Australia,” he added.
Managing Director of England Men’s Cricket, Ashley Giles, added: “Following a very successful operation on his finger and several conversations over the last few weeks between Ben and I, our medical staff and his management team, Ben called me to say he was ready to return to cricket and was excited about the prospect of playing a significant role in the Ashes series.”
“Time and time again, Ben has demonstrated how important he is to the England team and having him available for the Ashes series is excellent news for all of us and, in particular, Chris (Silverwood), Joe (Root) and the rest of the players,” he added.
Former England skipper Michael Vaughan termed all-rounder Ben Stokes’ inclusion in the Ashes squad as the “best news” on Monday. “The best news to wake up too. Ben Stokes back involved & on the plane to Australia ..#Ashes,” Vaughan tweeted.
The Ashes will begin on December 8 at the Gabba, Brisbane followed by a Day-Night Test at the Adelaide Oval on December 16. The third test would be played in Melbourne for the Boxing Day Test on December 26. The Pink Test would be played in Sydney on January 5 , next year with the series finale set to be played at the Optus Stadium in Perth on January 14/
England Squad: Joe Root (Captain), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Butler, Zak Crawley, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Mark Wood
Mujeeb’s fifer, Rashid’s four-fer help Afghanistan thrash Scotland by 130 runs
Mujeeb Ur Rahman stole the show with his fifer as Afghanistan thrashed Scotland by 130 runs in the Group 2 match of the ongoing T20 World on Monday.
If Mujeeb picked five, Rashid Khan took four wickets to dismantle Scotland batting as the five batsmen registered ducks during the chase. Chasing 191, Scotland crumbled as Mujeeb picked three wickets in the fourth over. From there on Scotland never really recovered as the side kept losing wickets at regular intervals.
Mujeeb came back to pick two more wickets as Scotland got reduced 45/7 in the eighth over. In the end, Scotland was folded for 60 runs in the 11th over as Rashid took two wickets in two balls.
Earlier, opting to bat first, Afghanistan scored 190/4 at the end of 20 overs. Najibullah Zadran was dismissed on the final ball of the innings after he smashed 59 off 34 balls to steer Afghanistan to 190.
Afghanistan got off to a blazing start as openers Hazratullah Zazai and Mohammad Shahzad whacked boundaries in the powerplay and took their side over the 50-run mark within six overs.
While Shahzad scored 22, Zazai missed out on fifty as his blistering knock of 44 came to an end in the 10 over.
Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Najibullah Zadran then stitched an 87-run stand for the third wicket. While Gurbaz departed in the 19th over, Najibullah took Afghanistan to 190 before being dismissed.
Brief Scores: Afghanistan 190/4 (Najibullah 59, Gurbaz 46; Safyaan Sharif 2-33) vs Scotland 60/10 (George Munsey 25; Mujeeb Ur Rahman 5-20)
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