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Matthews ready for Australia

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Published in Cricket
Tuesday, 16 May 2017 14:31

West Indies all-rounder Hayley Matthews is looking forward to renewing acquaintances with Australia at this summer's ICC Women's Cricket World Cup.

Matthews put Australia to the sword at last year's Women's World T20, sharing a 120-run opening wicket partnership with skipper Stafanie Taylor as West Indies chased down 149 to lift the trophy at Eden Gardens, Kolkata.

West Indies play the Southern Stars in their World Cup opener at Taunton on June 26 and Matthews hopes they can build on their T20 success in the 50-over format of the game.

"We should be going into it with lots of confidence coming off our World T20 win. This is obviously a different format for us, and we don't tend to do as well in it, but we're hoping we can show our improvement."

Matthews is acutely aware of the quality Australia have in their ranks. The 19-year-old played domestic cricket in Australia for Tasmania Roar last year and has turned out for Hobart Hurricanes in the last two editions of the Women's Big Bash League.

The Barbadian acknowledges the Southern Stars are one of the favourites for this year's tournament but insists Australia will face stiff competition to lift the trophy as they chase an unprecedented seventh World Cup triumph.

"I think every team going to England this summer will be going there and looking to win," she said.

"You don't want to go into any tournament with any less of a goal, especially when it is a World Cup.

"We want to win the tournament but we know it's going to be really hard. All of the teams are so competitive this year. Australia and England are looking really good and India are doing really well at the moment.

"We have a lot of teams to look out for if we want to win it and we know to do that we are going to have to play some really good cricket."

The West Indies play at all four tournament venues during the World Cup group stages, but after sampling the atmosphere at Eden Gardens last year, Matthews has her sights set on taking to the field in the final at Lord's.

"Everyone knows that Lord's is the home of cricket," she added.

"It would be amazing to get there and amazing to be in the final at such an iconic venue. It would be a real honour to play in the final there if we do reach the final."

Pakistan snatch historic win

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Monday, 15 May 2017 17:40

Yasir Shah dismissed Shannon Gabriel in the penultimate over of the third and final Test as Pakistan beat West Indies by 101 runs in Dominica to clinch a historic 2-1 series victory.

A valiant unbeaten century by Roston Chase almost staved off defeat for West Indies, who were all out for 202 in their second innings with only one over remaining at Windsor Park in Roseau.

Chase and the West Indies tail made the Pakistan bowlers sweat, after the visitors took the new ball with 17 overs remaining.

However, Gabriel was bowled by leg-spinner Yasir on the final ball of the penultimate over, leaving Younus Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq to retire on a winning note.

Had Gabriel survived that ball, Chase would have had strike for the final over. He ended on 101 not out as Pakistan claimed their fest ever series win in the Caribbean.

O'Brien maiden ton in vain

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Published in Cricket
Monday, 15 May 2017 17:39

Niall O'Brien scored a maiden one-day international hundred but Mitchell Santner's five-wicket haul helped New Zealand avoid a shock defeat to Ireland in Dublin.

After New Zealand set Ireland 290 to win the second tri-series match, O'Brien (109) gave the hosts hope with a fine century that featured nine fours and five sixes.

But O'Brien ran out of partners, with Andy Balbirnie's 39 the next best score, and ultimately became the fourth of Santner's five victims.

The left-arm spinner finished with 5-50 as Ireland were bowled out for 238 in the 46th over, the hosts losing their last five wickets for 26 runs.

Scott Kuggeleijn (3-41) also impressed on his ODI debut, removing Ireland openers William Porterfield (12) and Paul Stirling (14) in his first three overs, and returned to have Gary Wilson (30) caught in the covers to spark the collapse.

The other Blackcaps debutant, Seth Rance (1-44), finished the match with his first wicket, trapping last man Peter Chase lbw.

Earlier, Neil Broom (79), Ross Taylor (52) and George Worker (50) all hit half centuries for the Black Caps as they managed 289-7 from their 50 overs.

The next tri-series fixture is on Wednesday where New Zealand take on Bangladesh, whose opener against Ireland was washed out.


RLODC: Ingram ton sees off Kent

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Monday, 15 May 2017 17:35

Colin Ingram's sensational form for Glamorgan in the Royal London One-Day Cup continues as he hit a third hundred for the tournament in the15-run win over Kent.

Ingram (114) followed up his ton in Glamorgan's latest win over Hampshire with a 98-ball effort as the hosts amassed 356-7.

Darren Stevens (147) then cracked an incredible 48-ball century for Kent in reply, but couldn't quite get his team over the line as they slipped to a slender defeat when bowled out for 341 in the 48th over.

Kumar Sangakkara hit a hundred as Surrey beat Hampshire by 66 runs in their clash at The Oval.

Sangakkara's unbeaten 124 - off 121 balls - overshadowed George Bailey's own fine hundred for Hampshire, the Australian hitting 145 not out in his team's total of 271-8.

Rain intervened at the 38-over mark of Surrey's chase, with the team 238-2 and well ahead of the Duckworth-Lewis par score.

Elsewhere in the South Group, Essex beat Somerset by 72 runs in a top-of-the-table tussle in Taunton.

Tom Westley tonked a 98-ball hundred for Essex, while Ravi Bopara also impressed with 92 not out off 81 deliveries.

Chasing 335 to win, openers Johann Myburgh (57 off 28 balls) and Jim Allenby (77) got Somerset off to a great start but the team eventually fell away to be bowled out for 262 in the 44th over.

Worcestershire, meanwhile, went top of North Group with their 15-run win over Durham at New Road.

Chasing 271 to win, Graham Clark (114) hit a superb century for Durham - sharing in a century opening stand with Keaton Jennings (47) - but the visitors drastically fell away, with no-one else scoring greater than 17 as they finished on 255-9.

Earlier, Brett D'Oliveira top-scored for Worcestershire with his 68-ball 73.

Nottinghamshire ended Lancashire's three-match winning streak in the competition with their seven-wicket triumph over the Red Rose county at Trent Bridge.

Lancashire, batting first, scored 260-6 in their 50 overs with Haseeb Hameed hitting an unbeaten 75.

But Notts made light work of the target as Samit Patel (103no) scored a century and Steven Mullaney 77 not out to take then to victory with four overs to spare.

Ian Bell's 98 helped holders Warwickshire to only their second win of the 2017 tournament, a five-wicket win over Yorkshire at Edgbaston.

Joe Root top-scored for the visitors with his 83 off 98 balls as Yorkshire tallied 281-8, but it wasn't to be enough.

A Chris Liddle five-for helped Gloucestershire get the better of Sussex, beating their hosts by six wickets in Eastbourne.

Liddle took 5-52 as Sussex were skittled for 240 - despite Luke Wright's 84 - and Gloucestershire reached their target with eight balls to spare, Jack Taylor blasting an unbeaten 64 off only 36 balls.

Leicestershire kept their slim hopes of qualification for the final stages alive with a comfortable five-wicket win over Derbyshire at Grace Road.

Alex Hughes top-scored for Derbyshire with 96 not out but ran out of partners as they were bowled out for 219, with Leicestershire knocking off the runs with more than 10 overs to spare.

Aussie tour role for Gillespie

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Friday, 12 May 2017 10:02

Jason Gillespie will coach Australia A when they tour South Africa later this year.

He will be assisted by Chris Rogers and Brad Haddin who will both undertake coaching duties on the trip during July and August.

The 42-year-old Gillespie, former coach of Yorkshire and now working with Kent, said: "It will no doubt feature some of the country's most talented players, and players challenging for the opportunity to play international cricket for Australia.

"It's a really exciting time to be involved in Australian cricket, and I can't wait to join up with the squad and head to South Africa."

Gillespie, who represented Australia in 71 Tests and 97 ODIs between 1996 and 2005, will take charge of the six-week tour that will include two four-day matches plus a limited-overs tri-series competition involving South Africa A and India A.

Cricket Australia's high performance manager Pat Howard added: "It's extremely pleasing to have three quality people in Jason, Chris and Brad on-board.

"All three have significant experience as players, in varying conditions across the world over their lengthy careers, which will no doubt be invaluable for the players touring with this squad."

'KSL pressure helping England'

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Friday, 12 May 2017 10:00

Lauren Winfield believes that the Kia Super League has helped the England team "hugely" ahead of this summer's Women's World Cup.

The England and Yorkshire Diamonds opener spoke of the need to perform under pressure during the KSL and says such experiences will only help Heather Knight's side as they look to triumph on home soil.

With the KSL to follow, it is a big summer for Winfield and her international team-mates, and one that she feels could prove extremely beneficial to English women's cricket in the future.

"I think it's helped hugely," Winfield, speaking at the launch of the 2017 KSL, told Sky Sports. "Women's cricket at times can be quite hard because you don't play any games under any real pressure or close games.

"A lot of our county games are either won by a large margin or you lose by a large margin. No one is coming down to watch you and there isn't any pressure on it, as such.

"In the last year or two, we (England) have come a long way as a group, in terms of playing and performing under pressure, nailing our skills. I think the West Indies was great for us for that because every game was close.

"They're obviously world champions in T20 so they're a good side and not many people beat them in their backyard, so that was a really great experience that we have in the bank now. Super League is exactly the same.

"T20, most of the time, goes down to the last over and there is only one or two runs in it. The more experience you can get under pressure in close games, the better really. We've got a catalogue of those experiences in the bank now and that is only going to hold us in good stead moving ahead to the World Cup."

With this year's Super League being shown live on Sky Sports, Winfield expects the added coverage can help the women's game in England - both at the top level and at grassroots cricket.


"The first year was a real success," she added. "The standard of the games, from a player's point of views, was really high.

"Looking in our dressing room and then at the opposition, there were a lot of good players on display - obviously with the England internationals and the volume of overseas players who were involved. I think the standard is only going to get better.

"In terms of the coverage, I think it's crucial. We get asked a lot: 'how do we get more girls playing cricket? What can we do to increase participation?' I think, ultimately, it's about how many people see girls playing cricket; whether it's internationals on TV or at grounds.

"I think it's really vital that we have that exposure and you always want players to be playing under pressure and I think there's always a bit of added pressure when you're playing in the TV games."

The inaugural KSL did not go according to plan for Yorkshire, who won just one game, but Winfield is determined that the Diamonds, under new coach Paul Grayson, hit the ground running this time around.

"Last year was a little bit disappointing for us," she said. "It's a tough competition and with the volume of games, you have to start well.

"That's something we'll be looking to do this year - those opening games are crucial otherwise you're chasing your tail a bit. We didn't get the start we wanted last year and you're almost back-peddling from there.

"They'll definitely be some importance put on the first couple of games this year and I'm really pleased with the signings we've made in terms of our overseas'. I think our batting will be much stronger than last year - that was probably something that let us down, the depth of our batting, which we've definitely boosted this year."

And performing under pressure will again be crucial for Winfield and her side as the Diamonds begin their KSL campaign by hosting Roses rivals Lancashire Thunder at Headingley on August 11.

ICC Champions Trophy competition

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Published in Cricket
Friday, 12 May 2017 09:58

Kingfisher, the No. 1 Indian beer brand, today announced it is searching the country for a new cricket correspondent to tour the country and report live from the ICC Champions Trophy.

The role, which is every cricket lovers dream, not only includes tickets to all 15 matches in the tournament, but lunch, travel there and back and a year's supply of Kingfisher beer.

To apply, all you need to do is clear your diary for the duration of the tournament and demonstrate your true passion for the game in any which way you like. The winning candidate will be required to update live from each of the matches across Kingfisher social channels with relevant cricket based content and opinion, but apart from that, kick back and enjoy the cricket.

Kingfisher Beer is the Official Lager Partner for this summer's ICC Champions Trophy to be held in England and Wales 1-18 June, and for fans who aren't lucky enough to win, Sky Sports will be broadcasting every match live from the tournament. Kingfisher will be the exclusive lager supplier at the three iconic venues - Edgbaston, Oval and Cardiff - where the event is being staged. In addition it will be the exclusive lager at the ICC Champions Trophy Fan Park. Brewed for over 150 years to an authentic and most venerable recipe, Kingfisher is the first choice of the nation, from Delhi to Doddanapudi.

Requirements of the role:

● All applicants must be 18 years and over

● Supporting Kingfisher Beer throughout the ICC Champions Trophy

● All travel and expenses covered by Kingfisher

● Responsible for capturing photos throughout each match

● Responsible for reporting cricket updates and any news worthy topics via Kingfisher social media channels within the agreed guidelines

● Supporting the relevant Kingfisher beer marketing initiatives happening throughout the live matches

The Kingfisher Story:

Established in Mysore, Bangalore in 1857. Kingfisher has risen from a soldier's tipple to a nation's pride and joy.

Kingfisher is India's No.1 beer and is one of the country's most heralded exports. Now brewed in Britain, this triumphant tipple can trace its roots all the way back to 1857 when Castle Breweries first started brewing in the majestic city of Mysore.

The sight of bullock carts carrying huge barrels of beer was a common sight. These carts wheeled their way to customers throughout the region as the refreshing brew became a favourite of all who tasted it. In time, Castle Breweries joined forces with four competitors to form the company now proudly known as United Breweries.

Since then, United Breweries has endeavoured to sell their most famous beer from Kerala in the south to Delhi in the north. And everywhere in between. As it has grown, the beer has become synonymous with the exciting side of Indian life. It is a sponsor of the Bangalore Royal Challengers, the Force India Formula 1 team and countless music festivals.

About The ICC:

The ICC is the global governing body for cricket. Representing 105 members, the ICC governs and administrates the game and is responsible for the staging of major international tournaments including the ICC World Cup and Women's World Cup, ICC Champions Trophy and the ICC Men's and Women's World T20.

The ICC presides over the ICC Code of Conduct which sets the professional standards of discipline for international cricket, playing conditions, bowling reviews and other ICC regulations. The Laws of the game remain under the auspices of the MCC.

The ICC also appoints the umpires and referees that officiate at all sanctioned Test matches, One Day International and Twenty20 Internationals. Through the Anti-Corruption Unit it coordinates action against corruption and match fixing.

The ICC Development department works with associate and affiliate members to improve the quality of international cricket, build better cricket systems, get more people playing cricket and grow the game.

Kings XI play-off hopes dented

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Monday, 08 May 2017 07:59

Hashim Amla's century was in vain as Kings XI were beaten by Gujarat Lions in a blow to their hopes of making the IPL play-offs.

Amla fell to the penultimate ball of the Kings XI innings, having made 104 from 60 balls, as the hosts finished on 189-3.

However, a blistering knock of 74 from 39 balls from Dwayne Smith helped Gujarat to complete a successful chase with two balls to spare and leave Kings XI three points off the final play-off place.

Having been put in to bat, Kings XI racked up a more than competitive total, largely thanks to a 125-run stand between Amla and Shaun Marsh (58 from 43 balls).

Captain Glenn Maxwell chipped in with an unbeaten 20 from 11 balls to put the home side in a seemingly commanding position at the halfway stage in Mohali.

An opening partnership of 91 between Smith and Ishan Kishan (29) put the Lions ahead of the required rate though and even when Smith fell, after striking eight fours and four sixes, in the 12th over, the visitors' charge did not falter.

Suresh Raina (39 from 25 balls) ensured the runs continued to flow and, after Sandeep Sharma dismissed Raina and Aaron Finch in the 18th, it was left Dinesh Karthik (35no from 23 balls) to hit the winning runs in the final over.

Nasser: No room for Bairstow

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Monday, 08 May 2017 07:55

Nasser Hussain believes that England’s ODI batting line-up is so strong that Jonny Bairstow will struggle to make the XI with everyone available, even after another superb display against Ireland.

The Yorkshireman hit an unbeaten 72 from 44 balls to help England up to 328-6 in their 85-run win over Ireland at Lord's.

That followed a stunning knock of 174 for Yorkshire in the Royal London One-Day Cup and has led many to question how England could possibly omit him from their line-up for the Champions Trophy, and the one-day series with South Africa that proceeds it.

"I keep hearing that it is difficult to leave Jonny Bairstow out - it's difficult to get Jonny Bairstow in!" Hussain said.

"I'd love someone to tweet me or email me a side with Jonny Bairstow in when everyone is available. I'd love someone to tell me how he plays.

"Who are you leaving out? Ben Stokes? Jos Buttler? The captain, Eoin Morgan? Joe Root? You just can't play him. That just shows how good this England side is.

"The bloke scored 174 in 113 balls for Yorkshire, he's come here and smashed 72 in 44 balls, every time he plays he gets runs - and he can't play. That shows how good this England side is in terms of batting."

Hussain does expect England to find room for Moeen Ali, though. The all-rounder missed out on selection in both games against Ireland with Joe Root performing well with the ball in his absence.

However, Hussain believes the return of Ben Stokes and how he alters the balance of the side will also allow Ali to return to the XI.

"In a funny way, Moeen Ali's best friend has become Ben Stokes," he added. "If Ben Stokes wasn't around, England would just think 'let's just play Rashid and Root' but when Ben comes back you get two cricketers.

"He will take the place of a seamer - probably Jake Ball - and hence Joe Root can stay in and Moeen Ali can come in. That gives you even more batting because, for me, although Rashid did well, I think he was one or two places too high.

"Ben Stokes just gives them so many options. Moeen Ali is a very good cricketer, he's done some good things with the ball as well. This is a good England side and I think we're learning that rapidly."

IPL return for Morgan and Billings

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Sunday, 07 May 2017 17:51

England captain Eoin Morgan and wicketkeeper Sam Billings will both return to the Indian Premier League at the end of the Royal London Series against Ireland.

England won the first match comfortably on Friday and the second and final game will be at Lord's on Sunday.

The England and Wales Cricket Board confirmed on Saturday morning that Morgan and Billings plan to fly back to India for up to three matches each for Kings XI Punjab and Delhi Daredevils respectively.

They are then scheduled to return - along with fellow IPL players Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Jos Buttler - on May 15, in time for an England training camp in Spain.

The England squad will then take on South Africa in the second Royal London Series of the season, as they complete their preparations for next month's Champions Trophy.

Opener Jason Roy, who played three matches for Gujarat Lions last month, has already said he will not be going back to India this summer


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