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Thursday,24-September-2020

International

England v Pakistan 1st Test, Day 4: Buttler, Woakes counter Pak charge

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England Jos Buttler (Photo: Twitter/@ICC)

Jos Buttler and Chris Woakes’ counter-attacking partnership for England stopped the Pakistan charge in the second session on Day four as the first Test between the two sides gears up to a dramatic conclusion at Old Trafford. While England need 110 more runs to win, Pakistan need 5 more wickets.

England started the second session on 55/1 with captain Joe Root and Dom Sibley in the middle. The pair continued to hang around well into the second session and their partnership was on 64 when Sibley succumbed to Yasir Shah. Sibley went for a hard drive across the line to a ball that Yasir delivered from over the wicket, it only took an edge and flew straight to Asad Shafiq at first slip.

Two overs later, Naseem Shah successfully set up Root who also edged the delivery to first slip and England all of a sudden lost both their set batsmen. Yasir struck again soon with the big wicket of Ben Stokes who was done in by the extra bounce the former got and gloved it to the wicketkeeper.

The umpire initially shook his head upon which Azhar Ali took the review. The replays showed a feather of a spike on ultra edge when the ball passed Stokes’ gloves. Two overs later, Shaheen Afridi’s unplayable delivery that bounced off a length took Ollie Pope by surprise. It smashed into his gloves and Shadab Khan took the catch running in from gully.

With Pakistan in the driver’s seat, Buttler went on the counter while Woakes also put on his batsman’s hat. The pair managed to knock off 50 runs in the remaining overs of the second session and thus left the match on a knife’s edge when the umpires knocked off the bails for Tea.

Brief Scores: Pakistan: 326 and 169 vs England: 219 & 167/5 (Joe Root 42, Dom Sibley 36; Yasir Shah 2/74)

International

IPL: Mitchell Marsh ruled out, SRH call Jason Holder as replacement

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Mitchell-Marsh

SunRisers Hyderabad (SRH) all-rounder Mitchell Marsh has been ruled out of the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) edition following an ankle injury he sustained during their season opener against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). He will be replaced by West Indies all-rounder Jason Holder.

“Mitchell Marsh has been ruled out due to injury. We wish him a speedy recovery. Jason Holder will replace him for #Dream11IPL 2020,” Sunrisers Hyderabad said in an official statement on Twitter.

On Monday, Marsh hurt his ankle after bowling just his second delivery of the match against RCB and managed to send down only two more balls before going off the field injured. The Australian later came out to bat at number 10 in SRH’s chase but he was dismissed for a duck after he exaggerated his injury trying to clear the ropes.

Chasing 164 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium, SRH seemed to be in complete control till the time Jonny Bairstow was at the crease. However, following Bairstow’s dismissal on his individual score of 61, the team suffered a dramatic collapse and eventually fell short of the target by 10 runs.

SRH will next face Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

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IPL: Shubman Gill focal point of KKR batting unit, feels Scott Styris

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Shubman-Gill

Shubman Gill is a “terrific” batsman and is the focal point of the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) batting unit, feels former New Zealand cricketer Scott Styris.

KKR are slated to open their Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 campaign against defending champions Mumbai Indians at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium on Wednesday evening. Gill, 24, has played a total of 27 matches for KKR in which he has amassed 499 runs.

“I’ve been the number one cheerleader since the last 18 months. Since Shubman Gill has been around I can say I’m at the top of that fanboy list and I think Gill is a fabulous cricketer. I think he’s a terrific, talented batsman,” Styris said while speaking on Star Sports show Game Plan.

“Shubman Gill, now with the loss of Robin (Uthappa) and Gautam Gambhir at KKR, is a leader, the focal point of that batting unit. He is best batsman of KKR,” he added.

According to the former Black Caps all-rounder, Gill has a lot more responsibility on his shoulders as compared to other young batsmen like Prithvi Shaw or Devdutt Padikkal in other teams and that could be the only thing which might hold him down.

“…there’s a lot more responsibility on Gill that you don’t see with a lot of those other youngsters and that may be the only thing that holds him down. (He) Just looked great and has played great but he has got the extra responsibility that some of those other players don’t.”

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Focussing on expressing myself & having a lot of fun this IPL: Marcus Stonis

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Marcus-Stonis

Australia all-rounder Marcus Stonis, who played an instrumental role in Delhi Capitals’ incredible win over Kings XI Punjab in their opening IPL 2020 encounter, has said that all he wants is to express himself and have a lot of fun throughout this year’s tournament.

On Sunday, Stoinis’ quick-fire 53 off 21 balls with the bat and 2-29 with the ball took the match into an exciting Super Over, where the Delhi Capitals secured the win against Kings XI Punjab.

Having proved to be the game changer in both the innings, Stoinis has said his maturity played a role on the day. “I’ve come in with some confidence through good performances this year, but also maybe putting less responsibility on myself than some other years. Sometimes when you’re young and you’re in a rush, you want to do well and you’re trying so hard.”

“So I think this year I sort of just wanted to express myself and its only one game, so we’ll see, you can turn from a hero to a villain quickly, but yes, my focus is on just having a lot of fun and trust that I’ll be good,” he added.

The 31-year-old all-rounder also said that “going back to basics” has helped him. “I think everyone who plays cricket at this level, the main reason you play it is because you love it. You start playing when you’re a kid, and there’s so much travel, staying away from home and there’s obviously the pressures. But the main reason you do it is because you love what you do. That’s the main ingredient,” he added.

With 17 wickets and 526 runs under his belt in 30 IPL matches, things haven’t always gone according to plan for the Australian, but Stoinis said it is always a rewarding feeling to contribute to wins.

“There are a lot of games, as a professional sportsman, that you go out and you don’t perform as well as you want to. Cricket is that type of game – you sort of get used to underperforming a lot of the time. So when you do perform and you do well for the team, it’s a very rewarding feeling,” he said.

The limited-overs specialist also said that his team has a “really good vibe”. “With Ricky (Ponting) as a coach and as a leader, he sets that standard. We have a good core of young players, with lots of energy and some good experience. We’ve got some good overseas players too. So I think our balance on the whole, makes it an exciting group and we’ve got a good energy around the team,” Stoinis said.

Stoinis will look to maintain his form when Delhi Capitals take on Chennai Super Kings at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Friday.

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