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Tuesday,15-June-2021

International

Faf du Plessis rested for ODI series against England

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Senior South Africa batsman Faf du Plessis has been rested for the upcoming three-match ODI series against England, Cricket South Africa confirmed on Thursday.

Along with du Plessis, Kagiso Rabada, Pite van Biljon, Bjorn Fortuin and Reeza Hendricks have also been released from the squad.

“The following players have been released from the squad to either join their franchise teams who continue playing in the CSA Four-Day Domestic Series or for rest and/or recuperation; Faf du Plessis (rest), Kagiso Rabada (injury rehabilitation, recuperation and rest), Pite van Biljon, Bjorn Fortuin and Reeza Hendricks (all to return to 4-Day Domestic Series),” CSA said in a statement.

du Plessis played all the three T20Is for the Proteas which they lost to England. He scored 121 runs, with his highest score being 58 which came in the first T20I on November 27.

Meanwhile, Rabada, who had sustained a right adductor strain — one that also kept him out of the dead-rubber final T20I at Newlands — had already been ruled out of the ODI series which begins Friday in Cape Town.

“The player will be released from the squad and bio-secure environment tomorrow to begin recovery, rehabilitation and preparation for the Betway Test series against Sri Lanka beginning on December 26,” a CSA release stated on Wednesday.

South Africa squad: Quinton de Kock (captain), Temba Bavuma, Junior Dala, Beuran Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen, George Linde, Keshav Maharaj, Janneman Malan, David Miller, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Lutho Sipamla, Jon-Jon Smuts, Glenton Stuurman, Rassie van der Dussen, Kyle Verreynne.

International

Virat Kohli gets a taste of pace, bounce at Southampton

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India skipper Virat Kohli got a glimpse of pace and bounce, that groundsman Simon Lee wants in the World Test Championship (WTC) final pitch, during a nets session at the Hampshire Bowl here.

Kohli was felled by a fast bouncer from one of India’s throwdown specialists in a video posted by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Tuesday as he prepared for the WTC final that gets underway from June 18.

Lee was on Monday quoted as saying, “For me personally, I just want to get something out that has some pace, bounce and carry in the pitch.”

The 32-year-old, who is India’s No. 4 in Test batting line-up, was also seen blocking a yorker, playing drives and reaching out for a delivery.

The video also showed India pace bowlers Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami as well as spinner Ravindra Jadeja bowling to other batsmen with Rishabh Pant smashing a six.

India vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane also seemed to be getting a hang of things as he played a flick shot that was acknowledged by teammates including bowler Ishant.

India had reached Southampton on June 3 and underwent quarantine for 10 days during which they also played an intra-squad simulation match.

They came out of quarantine on Monday.

The Indian Test squad is staying in United Kingdom for three-and-a-half months during which they will also play a five-Test series against England in August-September.

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International

Indian cricketers loving the taste of England

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Scrambled eggs, baked beans, brown toast, and sausages seem to be the favourite breakfast of Indian cricketers while they are in England for the World Test Championship (WTC) final and a five-match Test series against the hosts.

Pacers Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami and off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin say their favourite English breakfast was scrambled eggs, baked beans and toast, while India vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane added sausages to the menu.

In a video posted by bcci.tv on Tuesday, the fifth player, Cheteshwar Pujara, said he preferred brown toast, potato roasties and beans, as he was a vegetarian.

While fielding a ‘Rapid fire Challenge'”, all the cricketers were in agreement that Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (DDLJ) was one of their favourite films shot in England.

The other movies shot in England that they could immediately think of were: Namaste London, Kal Ho Na Ho, and Houseful.

All the cricketers agreed that the balmy England weather was the biggest attraction to tour the country.

Shami said he liked England because of the weather and the plenty of opportunities it provided for shopping.

Ashwin said that “the greatest blessing of coming to England is to walk on those big streets especially in the London mainstream…you can grab a coffee by the road, sit around and calmly have a chat with whoever you’re going with”.

Rahane made it clear that though he liked walking around parks and going to cafes with his family, his immediate task was to play competitive cricket against New Zealand in the WTC final in Southampton from Friday and the Test series against England in August-September.

“Playing cricket here is what I really enjoy,” said the vice-captain. And as an afterthought he said that “walking around the parks and going to cafes with your families, especially now that my daughter is here, are what I like a lot”.

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Indian team winds up its match simulation, out of quarantine

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The Indian cricket team ended its three-day match simulation on Sunday ahead of the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand with the likes of Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Mayank Agarwal among others getting a chance to bat.

“The third day of intra-squad match simulation was about settling down & finding that rhythm. [emoticon: thumbs-up twice] #TeamIndia,” tweeted the Board of Control for Cricket in India along with a brief video recapping the day’s play.

The third day saw Hanuma Vihari and Shubman Gill opening the innings with the former, who had a terrible outing with Warwickshire county this season, shown glancing the ball.

All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja is shown playing a cover-drive, Rohit a cut off the back-foot and Rahane flicking the ball. Coach Ravi Shastri is seen watching the proceedings from the dressing room balcony.

The Indian team came out of its mandatory 10-day quarantine on Monday and will gear up for the WTC final which begins on June 18. The players had reached Southampton on June 3.

The New Zealand squad, after its 1-0 series win over host England, will reach Southampton from Birmingham on Monday afternoon.

The WTC final will be the first Test match India will play at a neutral venue.

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