Since 2016, Ishant Sharma has an average of 22.91 in Test cricket and, which jumped to pulverising figures of 19.34 in 2018, which is the second best in the world after Jason Holder of West Indies. Ishant Sharma’s average is even better than James Anderson, who has taken the most number of wickets in the list of fast bowlers. Ishant is playing his hundredth Test for India, at the new Motera Stadium in Ahmedabad. So far, only Kapil Dev had achieved this milestone.
Speaking to The Sunday Guardian, Sharavan Kumar, Ishant’s coach since his school days, said that the great secret of his success in these years is that he has started bowling more intelligently. “His bowling shows a lot of sense. He completely avoids the weak ball so that he can continuously pressurize the batsman. Although Ishant swings the ball on both sides, inswing has been his main weapon,” Sharavan Kumar said.
“He [Ishant] also puts the batsman in trouble by resorting to reverse swing from time to time,” Kumar added.
On the fourth day of the second cricket Test played in Chennai, Ishant troubled Joe Root—who is currently ranked among the top five batsmen in the world, and is in a very good form— with his reverse swing. Not only this, Ishant applies different tactics against left-handed batsmen. He bowls round the wicket to such batsmen, which gives a good angle to his balls.
Shravan Kumar says that Ishant tries for inswing that goes out for left-handers. It is very difficult to read such balls moving at fiery speeds. “When Ishant first came to me, he was in the 10th standard, and at that time he was wearing slippers. Then he showed me few balls on the nets and I was very much impressed by his action. I admitted him to Ganga International school and after that, he started coming to my Rohtak Road Gymkhana regularly. His action was already superb, I only had to work on his run-up,” said Kumar. “I can say that Ishant Sharma is India`s first genuine pacer because in the past, fast bowlers had more emphasis on swing or seam movement, and Ishant has good pace as well,” he added. While showering praise on ace bowler’s learning capabilities, Kumar said, “Ishant could bowl consistently at a speed of 140 clicks. He liked to bowl longer spells. On one occasion, he was struggling with his action, and he came to me. He solved this problem by talking to me. He’s always been a fast learner.”
When Ishant joined Sussex county, former Australian fast bowler Jason Gillespie was the coach of that Academy. “Ishant learned the art of fuller length balls and the art of hitting the ball from him [Gillespie],” Kumar added. “Playing hundred Test match is the dream of every cricketer. I wish him all the best for the Test in New Motera. Youngsters of our country can learn a lot from him,” Sharavan Kumar concluded.
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Sathiyan, Sharath, Batra advance to 2nd round of WTT Star Contender Doha
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)
Various roles for CSK in IPL 2020 made me better player: Sam Curran
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)
Emily Ramsey joins West Ham United Women from Manchester United on loan
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)
Sam Curran defends England’s rotation policy, says he’s raring to go for T20Is
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)
Man City are too far ahead: Solskjaer plays down title race revival after win
Manchester [UK], March 8 (ANI): Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has played down the talks regarding the late Premier League title push after his team defeated Manchester City.
Goals from Bruno Fernandes and Luke Shaw gave Manchester United a 2-0 victory against Manchester City on Sunday which ended the leaders’ 15-match winning run in the Premier League. With this, Manchester City remain at the top of the Premier League table with 65 points while Manchester United are now second on the table with 54 points.
While Solskjaer is delighted with the victory, he insisted that Pep Guardiola’s side is “too far ahead”.
“We just take one game at a time. City are too far ahead for us to think we can catch them. Last year we caught 15 points up on Leicester, but City are a different proposition,” Goal.com quoted Solskjaer as saying.
“Even today they put us under so much pressure you could see we were playing against a very good team. When you come away with a 2-0 win and another clean sheet and a performance like this then you are delighted,” he added.
During the match, Manchester United got off to a flying start and took the lead thanks to a second-minute penalty from Fernandes, awarded after Gabriel Jesus had fouled Anthony Martial. Manchester City threatened after the break but Manchester United defended well to maintain their lead.
Shaw doubled Manchester United’s lead in the 50th minute and with this, Solskjaer’s side sealed a 2-0 win in the match. (ANI)
International Women’s Day: Mithali Raj shares picture with her ‘idol’
New Delhi [India], March 8 (ANI): On the occasion of International Women’s Day, India women’s ODI skipper Mithali Raj dedicated a heartfelt post to her mother, her ‘biggest inspiration’, on Monday.
The veteran cricketer shared an adorable picture with her mother, along with a sweet note for the ‘strong and brave person’.
Mithali, who represented India in 89 T20I matches before calling off her career in the shortest format, said that her mother has always encouraged her to give the best.
“My mother is my biggest inspiration, she is my idol. A strong and solid person. Caring, honest, brave and always encouraging me to give my best. On women’s day I salute her and wish all the lovely women a very happy women’s day #HappyWomensDay,” Mithali tweeted.
Earlier in the day, India skipper Virat Kohli said the strength of a society is the strength of women.
Taking to Twitter, Kohli wrote, “Happy Women’s Day to all the amazing women of the world. The strength of a society is the strength of women.”
India Test team vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane wrote, “I feel lucky to be surrounded by so many strong women in my life, thank you for your all unending support. Wishing all the wonderful women a very Happy Women’s Day!”
Each year on March 8, International Women’s Day is observed in order to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day commemorates women, who despite various challenges posed by society have proven their mettle in every sphere across the world. (ANI)
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