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Team India look to ring in changes for second Test

With Ishant Sharma already not in the team, India are hard-pressed for quality pace bowlers. His absence, along with Rohit’s, makes it difficult for the touring side to make a comeback in the series.

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Battered in the first Test by eight wickets after being shot out for 36 in the second innings, the Indian team may ring in a few changes for the second Test against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) that begins on December 26.

While Virat Kohli, who is returning to India to attend the birth of his first child, and Mohammed Shami, who is learned to have suffered a fracture on his bowling hand, will have to be replaced due to circumstances, Prithvi Shaw could lose out on form as he has failed to score in all six innings — four in warm-ups and two in first Test during the ongoing tour.

India may bring in KL Rahul and Shubman Gill as the replacements for batsmen Kohli and Shaw, if the latter is axed.

Rishabh Pant, either as wicketkeeper-batsman or purely as batsman, and spinner Ravindra Jadeja will also most likely make the cut.

For Shami, the team management have right-arm pace bowlers Mohammed Siraj and Navdeep Saini as replacements. The team management may add one of T Natarajan, Shardul Thakur and Karthik Tyagi as replacement in the squad. Natarajan provides a left-arm option to the side.

India’s left-arm bowlers had, in the previous decade, produced some exciting moments on Australian tours, be it Irfan Pathan, Zaheer Khan, RP Singh, or Ashish Nehra. Over the last two tours, in 2014-15 and 2018-19, and the ongoing one, India have not had a single left-arm seamer touring Australia even though their frontline pace attack comprising right-armers Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma bowled them to series victory in 2018-19.

With Ishant Sharma already not there — he is recuperating at the National Cricket Academy — India are hard-pressed for quality pace bowlers.

Ishant’s absence, along with Rohit’s, from the touring party had upset the India skipper Kohli who had said that the two should have been doing rehabilitation with the Indian team in Australia just like Wriddhiman Saha did.

Kohli complained of miscommunication over the fitness updates of the two.

“It definitely would have been very helpful in them getting fit if they were here and doing the rehab just like Saha is with the team to be fit for the Test series,” the Indian captain had said prior to the ODI series.

Bumrah will lead the pace attack along with Umesh Yadav, who is on his fourth tour of Australia. It will be interesting to see who India play as third seamer, provided they play a third seamer at all.

Left-arm spinner Jadeja, who missed the first Test after being hit on the head in the first T20I on December 4, will most likely pair up with R Ashwin in a two-pronged spin attack, if the left-armer regains match fitness. Jadeja also provides a batting option lower down.

Jadeja could bat at No.6 or 7, depending on India’s decision to play three or two seamers.

Hanuma Vihari will also be under spotlight as he failed in both the innings, although he had a decent outing in the warm-ups — a century and a 28 besides a couple of 15s. He made 16 and eight in the two innings of the Test. If the Indian team management sacks him, it will most likely play Pant at No.6.

Mayank Agarwal would open with either Gill or Rahul with Pujara in at No. 3. Rahane could move to No. 4, with either Gill or Rahul coming in at No. 5.

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AHMEDABAD, LUCKNOW TO BE NEW TEAMS IN IPL AS CVC CAPITAL AND RPSG WIN BIDS

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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

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Both powerplays were bad and decisive for India

Saba Karim

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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.

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‘MAN-U WON’T MISS ANYTHING IF POGBA DOESN’T PLAY AGAIN’

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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.

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Shami subjected to online abuse after India suffer defeat against Pak; former cricketers express support

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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.

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.

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STOKES ‘READY FOR AUSTRALIA’, ADDED TO ENGLAND ASHES TEAM

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England cricketer Ben Stokes.

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

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Mujeeb’s fifer, Rashid’s four-fer help Afghanistan thrash Scotland by 130 runs

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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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