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Kane Williamson named Player of the Year at New Zealand Cricket awards




Kiwi captain Kane Williamson claimed the coveted Sir Richard Hadlee Medal for Men’s Player of the Year at the annual New Zealand Cricket (NZC) awards on Thursday.

Williamson also took home the Test Player of the Year award and the Redpath Cup for First-Class Batting. Ross Taylor, Trent Boult and Colin Munro also received major awards, while teenaged all-rounder Amelia Kerr was a big winner among the women, according to the ICC’s website.

Williamson had a hugely successful year across formats, both individually as well as the New Zealand team.

Under his leadership, New Zealand rose to become the No. 2 side in the ICC Test Team Rankings. He also enjoyed good form with the bat, scoring 801 Test runs over the season under consideration, at an impressive average of 89.

Like Williamson, the 18-year-old Kerr also bagged three awards — the Women’s ODI Player of the Year, Phyl Blackler Cup for women’s domestic bowling and the Venus Cup for Secondary Schools Female Player of the Year.

Kerr enjoyed a tremendous season, scoring 415 runs at an average of 59. She also broke the world record for the highest individual score in women’s ODIs, when she smashed 232 (not out), surpassing Belinda Clark’s 21-year best of 229.

Taylor, who enjoyed a monstrous 2018 in ODIs, where he averaged 84 for his 759 runs, was named the Men’s ODI Player of the Year for the second year in a row.

In the T20I format, Sophie Devine once again took the Women’s Twenty20 Player of the Year award, while Munro, too, bagged the Men’s title like he did last year.

Fast bowler Trent Boult, who received the Richard Hadlee Medal last year, was presented the Windsor Cup for first-class bowling, for his 35 wickets at an average of 24.


Googly will be my most important weapon against England, says Yasir Shah



Pakistan spinner Yasir Shah is hopeful of dry wickets during their upcoming series against England as he feels it will aid his bowling against a high-profile batting line-up of The Three Lions.

The two teams are scheduled to play three Tests and as many T20Is in the series which will be played after the conclusion of the ongoing three-match Test series between England and West Indies.

Pakistan cricketers are currently under a 14-day quarantine period, following which they will travel to Derbyshire on July 13.

They had started their preparations for England series with a two-day inter-squad scenario-based practice match played on July 5-6 at Worcester.

Shah revealed he has been working a lot on his googlies and will look to trouble the England batsmen with his ‘most important weapon’ in the series.

“My googly is coming out well,” Shah was quoted as saying by ICC. “In the two-day match, all the googlies I bowled landed well and spun well. I think it will be my most important weapon.

“Counties usually sign spinners for July to September because in these three months, spinners get help on dry wickets,” he added.

The first Test will be played at the Old Trafford starting August 5 followed by the last two Tests at the Ageas Bowl, which start on August 13 and August 21 respectively.

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No BLM logo during 3TC match as jerseys have gone to print, says Graeme Smith



Cricket South Africa. (Photo: Twitter/@OfficialCSA)

Cricket South Africa (CSA) will be discussing ways to express support for the Black Lives Matter movement but it may not be possible for having a BLM logo on the jerseys for the 3TC match as they have already been made. CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith said that there will be a discussion with players about how to go about it.

“We’re discussing various ways of handling it. The kit has gone to print already. We need to figure out how we can be effective about it, authentic, and spread the messages that are meaningful to us as South Africans and how it affects us on a daily basis,” Smith is quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.

The unique 3TC match features three teams playing in the same game. Smith said that while he is confident of coming across no opposition to taking any stand during the match, it is important to get everyone on the same page about it.

“We are all in our own little pockets and I think it’s important that in the future we all come together and figure out how we can play our role in the Black Lives Matter movement,” Smith said.

“My belief in these things is that its important to have buy-in and everyone invested in it as well and I have no doubt that will be the case but the discussion in each team environment and as CSA how we handle it going forward is important. We do have the 3TC approaching and that will be our first occasion with the Black Lives Matter movement.”

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Trott & I got ‘spiked’ during Hong Kong Sixes, claims Tim Bresnan



Former England cricketer Tim Bresnan recently opened up about his struggles with mental health and also recounted an incident where he claimed he was drugged along with his former teammate Jonathan Trott during a Hong Kong Sixes tournament.

Bresnan was referring to the 2008 edition of the multi-national event in Kowloon, where it was later found out that he had ketamine — a medicine that induces a trance-like state while providing pain relief — in his system.

“Got drugged in Hong Kong. We’re in Hong Kong Sixes, myself and Jonny Trott. And we got spiked,” Bresnan said on Shackles Are Off podcast.

“They reckon it was ketamine, there were traces in our system. But we got to Loughborough and got the drugs tested and stuff, the voluntary ones. I’d lost the plot by then anyway.

“That was the…end of the 2008 summer. And then I had that whole winter off, had a really good pre-season with Yorkshire, in Abu Dhabi.

“It was like walking back into an environment with all your mates…it was like a stag do, and really enjoyed it. Really enjoyed my cricket again. I played my first Test in 2009 of that summer,” he added.

Bresnan, 35, recently joined Warwickshire on a two-year deal that will see him at the club till 2022. Bresnan previously played for Yorkshire for 19 years where he won the County Championships twice – 2014 and 2015.

“I’m thrilled to be joining Warwickshire. It’s a Club that I’ve always admired, and I’ve always thoroughly enjoyed playing at Edgbaston with Yorkshire and England,” Bresnan was quoted as saying in the statement uploaded on Warwickshire’s Twitter handle.

“I’ve had some great conversations with Paul Farbrace about the way that he plans to take the Club forwards, and I see this move as a great fit for both of us.

“I have still got a strong desire to continuing playing at the top level and to win, so hopefully I can pass on a bit of my experience to the young players who are coming through.”

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