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Friday,24-September-2021

International

Despite his good run, a ton eludes Virat Kohli in ODIs

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India captain Virat Kohli hasn’t looked like doing much wrong in One-day Internationals (ODI) in recent times except for the centuries he had made a habit of scoring in the last few years aren’t coming his way anymore.

The 32-year-old right-handed batsman, who is six short of Sachin Tendulkar’s ODI world record of 49 centuries, has been on 43 centuries since August 14, 2019. It means that he has gone over one-and-a-half years without an ODI ton . Although he is averaging a decent 45.85 and has eight fifties in 14 matches in the period, a century remains elusive. He has come close to scoring a hundred on a couple of times, 89 and 85.

On Friday, he fell for 66, his fourth successive half-century in ODIs. While he scored two fifties in the last two ODIs in Australia — 89 and 63, he also made a 56 in the first ODI against England at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium here on Tuesday.

Kohli’s last century in ODI came on August 14, when he made 114 not out against West Indies in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad.

In over eight months leading up to that century, from January 1 to August 14, 2019, he had scored five centuries in 22 innings. That was a period when he was tipped to go past Tendulkar’s record of most centuries in ODIs very soon.

Prior to that phase, Kohli had scored six centuries in the 2018 calendar year, in 14 matches. He also got six centuries in 26 ODIs in 2017 and made three tons in 10 matches in 2016.

Overall, in international cricket, Kohli has failed to get a century since November 2019, when he reached the three-figure mark in the pink-ball Test match against Bangladesh.

In his last 12 Test innings, he has made just three half-centuries with the highest being 74, in the first innings of the first Test in Australia in Adelaide in 2020.

On Friday though, Kohli joined an exclusive club, becoming only the second batsman after Australia’s Ricky Ponting to score over 10,000 runs while batting at the No.3 position.

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KKR skipper Morgan fined Rs 24 lakh; others fined Rs 6 lakh each

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Eoin-Morgan

 Indian Premier League (IPL) side Kolkata Knight Riders have been fined after they maintained a slow over rate during their match against Mumbai Indians at the Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi on September 23 (Thursday).

“As it was the team’s second offence of the season under the IPL’s Code of Conduct relating to minimum over rate offences, Kolkata Knight Riders captain Eoin Morgan was fined Rs 24 lakhs,” an IPL statement said.

“The rest of the members of the playing XI were each fined lesser of either Rs 6 lakhs or 25 per cent of their individual match fee,” the statement added.

In the match against the Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai Indians, Rahul Tripathi and Venkatesh Iyer dazzled with the bat as the Kolkata franchise won by seven wickets.

While Iyer scored his maiden IPL fifty, Tripathi slammed an unbeaten 74 off 42 balls as KKR chased down the target with 4.5 overs to spare.

Needing 156 runs to win, KKR made a scintillating start, courtesy Shubman Gill and Iyer, and moved to 40 in 17 balls. However, the partnership was broken as Jasprit Bumrah disturbed the timber to send Gill packing.

Tripathi, who joined Iyer in the middle, made sure that KKR did not lose the momentum. The right-hander and Iyer added 23 runs in the final three overs of the powerplay as KKR moved to 63/1.

The big-hitting did not stop as Iyer and Tripathi continued to go after the MI bowlers, scoring 48 runs in the next four overs to take KKR to 111/1 after 10 overs. In the next over, the left-hander notched up a fine fifty – his first in the IPL – in 25 balls.

Tripathi then completed his half-century – seventh in the IPL – in the 12th over as KKR continued to make merry with the bat.

Morgan said later during the post-match press conference that, “It’s been a long time since we’ve played like this. Baz (coach Brendon McCullum) has taken over for almost two seasons, so the way we are playing is now getting into his style. To hold such a strong Mumbai team, and chase it down in the manner we did gives us confidence. We were trying to fit Iyer into the XI with a lot of talented guys, and its fantastic with the manner he has scored runs. We never put a number on him, on how many games he will get.”

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Coach Shastri hints that he might step down after T20 World Cup

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Ravi-Shastri

 Indian cricket team coach Ravi Shastri has given a big hint that he is likely to step down from the hot seat after the ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE and Oman when he said that “I believe one thing — never overstay your welcome.”

Shastri, who was squarely criticised for launching his new book in London and spreading the Covid-19 virus among the support staff two days before the fourth Test at The Oval, said on Saturday, “I believe so because I’ve achieved all I wanted,” when asked whether the ICC T20 World Cup would be his last outing with Team India as chief coach.

“Five years as No 1 (in Test cricket), to win in Australia twice, to win in England. I spoke to Michael Atherton earlier this summer and said: ‘For me, this is the ultimate — to beat Australia in Australia and win in England in Covid times.’ We lead England 2-1 and the way we played at Lord’s and the Oval was special,” Shastri told The Guardian.

“We’ve also beaten every country in the world in their own backyard in white-ball cricket. If we win the (T20) World Cup that will be the icing on the cake. There is nothing more. I believe one thing –never overstay your welcome. And I would say that, in terms of what I wanted to get out of the side, I’ve over-achieved. To beat Australia away and to lead the series in England in a Covid year? It is the most satisfying moment of my four decades in cricket,” said Shastri.

Within days of the book-launch function, where no masks were worn, Shastri had tested Covid-positive and went into isolation along with four members of his support staff. And when assistant physio Yogesh Parmar too tested positive, the players became anxious and finally the fifth and final Test in Manchester had to be called off.

“It was funny because in my 10 days I didn’t have a single symptom barring a little sore throat. I never had any temperature and my oxygen level was 99% all the time. I didn’t take any medication through 10 days of my isolation, not a single paracetamol. I tell the guys: ‘Once you’re double jabbed, it’s a bloody 10-day flu. That’s it,'” said Shastri.

On whether he discussed the emerging situation with players, Shastri replied, “No. I didn’t know who had got it (Covid-19). I didn’t know (the physio) got it suddenly and tested positive. He physically treated five or six players. I think that’s where the issue started. We were aware that the incubation period meant that someone might get it in the middle (of the Test). A lot of players had their families there. So it became a situation where you don’t know what that player is thinking. He’s got a young kid, you know, he’s got to think of them. It was a little, I would say, touchy.”

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Coach Shastri hints that he might step down after T20 World Cup

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Indian cricket team coach Ravi Shastri has given a big hint that he is likely to step down from the hot seat after the ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE and Oman when he said that “I believe one thing — never overstay your welcome.”

Shastri, who was squarely criticised for launching his new book in London and spreading the Covid-19 virus among the support staff two days before the fourth Test at The Oval, said on Saturday, “I believe so because I’ve achieved all I wanted,” when asked whether the ICC T20 World Cup would be his last outing with Team India as chief coach.

“Five years as No 1 (in Test cricket), to win in Australia twice, to win in England. I spoke to Michael Atherton earlier this summer and said: ‘For me, this is the ultimate — to beat Australia in Australia and win in England in Covid times.’ We lead England 2-1 and the way we played at Lord’s and the Oval was special,” Shastri told The Guardian.

“We’ve also beaten every country in the world in their own backyard in white-ball cricket. If we win the (T20) World Cup that will be the icing on the cake. There is nothing more. I believe one thing –never overstay your welcome. And I would say that, in terms of what I wanted to get out of the side, I’ve over-achieved. To beat Australia away and to lead the series in England in a Covid year? It is the most satisfying moment of my four decades in cricket,” said Shastri.

Within days of the book-launch function, where no masks were worn, Shastri had tested Covid-positive and went into isolation along with four members of his support staff. And when assistant physio Yogesh Parmar too tested positive, the players became anxious and finally the fifth and final Test in Manchester had to be called off.

“It was funny because in my 10 days I didn’t have a single symptom barring a little sore throat. I never had any temperature and my oxygen level was 99% all the time. I didn’t take any medication through 10 days of my isolation, not a single paracetamol. I tell the guys: ‘Once you’re double jabbed, it’s a bloody 10-day flu. That’s it,'” said Shastri.

On whether he discussed the emerging situation with players, Shastri replied, “No. I didn’t know who had got it (Covid-19). I didn’t know (the physio) got it suddenly and tested positive. He physically treated five or six players. I think that’s where the issue started. We were aware that the incubation period meant that someone might get it in the middle (of the Test). A lot of players had their families there. So it became a situation where you don’t know what that player is thinking. He’s got a young kid, you know, he’s got to think of them. It was a little, I would say, touchy.”

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