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.
RR win toss, choose to bowl against KKR
Rajasthan Royals (RR) on Wednesday won the toss and chose to bowl against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Both sides have made no changes to their squads and RR are looking for their first win outside of Sharjah.
RR have scored more than 200 runs in both matches, even completing a record run chase of 224 in their previous match. KKR meanwhile are looking to bounce back from a seven-wicket loss to Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Kolkata Knight Riders: Shubman Gill, Sunil Narine, Nitish Rana, Dinesh Karthik(wicketkeeper/captain), Eoin Morgan, Andre Russell, Pat Cummins, Shivam Mavi, Kuldeep Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy, Kamlesh Nagarkoti
Rajasthan Royals: Jos Buttler(wicketkeeper), Steven Smith(captain), Sanju Samson, Rahul Tewatia, Robin Uthappa, Riyan Parag, Jofra Archer, Tom Curran, Shreyas Gopal, Ankit Rajpoot, Jaydev Unadkat
New Zealand to start home summer against West Indies from November 27
The New Zealand men’s cricket team will begin their home season against the West Indies with a three-match T20I series slated to start from November 27 at Eden Park. After the T20Is set to be played till November 30, the teams will play two-Test series from December 3 to 15.
Apart from the West Indies, Pakistan, Australia and Bangladesh are also set to visit New Zealand in the upcoming months.
Pakistan will be playing three T20Is and two Tests against the Black Caps from December 18 to January 7. The first Test against Pakistan at the Bay Oval will be the eighth Boxing Day Test in New Zealand and the first since the Black Caps beat Sri Lanka at Hagley Oval in 2018. Wellington (five Tests) and Christchurch have hosted the others.
Then the Kiwis will take on Australia (five T20Is) and Bangladesh (two ODIs and three T20I) in February and March.
“Hosting these tours is incredibly important to us for two reasons: international cricket brings in revenue that funds the entire game of cricket in New Zealand and, also, it’s crucial that we look after the fans of the game and sport in general, especially during these difficult times,” said New Zealand Cricket’s CEO David White in a statement.
White said NZC was aware of the challenging circumstances in which many New Zealanders had found themselves in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis and would be cutting the price of a adult ticket by almost half, to acknowledge this.
“It might sound counter-intuitive to be lowering ticket prices at a time of great additional cost and expense to the game, but we think it’s the right thing to do,” he said.
While no international side would be in New Zealand through the bulk of January and early-February, White said Kiwis could still look forward to top cricket.
“One of the silver linings is that our Super Smash competition, which will be played in that window, will now be boosted by the presence of Black Caps and White Ferns.
“It’s going to be the best Super Smash yet, I’m confident of that,” he said.
Pakistan Cricket Board signs MoU with PITB for e-FOAS
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Tuesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) for the implementation of e-Filling and Office Automation System (e-FOAS) at the cricket headquarters.
Wasim Khan and Azfar Manzoor signed the MoU on behalf of the PCB and PITB respectively after the latter fulfilled the PCB’s requirements of providing a software that could improve day-to-day operations and also enhance the organisation’s archiving capabilities, stated PCB in a media release.
PCB General Manager – IT, Junaid Babar Khan: “The PCB was searching for a solution for electronic approvals with tracking to avoid delays in approvals as well as the management of office files for a quick reference/retrieval of information pertaining to any official matter or approvals or history.
“The e-FOAS has been developed by PITB with rich tools to help the PCB in its day to day office operations. This will not only help saving time and cost but also bring efficiency, enhancement and control that how official approvals are processed and data is maintained plus help archiving the old data,” he added.
PITB Chairman Azfar Maznoor said, “e-FOAS is a product of PITB and has been developed with the vision to fully automate the official disposal of work electronically which will result into better efficiency and will be a step towards paperless environment at PCB.”
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