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Saturday,08-May-2021

International

Virat Kohli a class player, doesn’t have many weaknesses: Tim Southee

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New-Zealand's-Tim-Southee

New Zealand pacer Tim Southee, who has now dismissed Virat Kohli the most number of times in international cricket, believes the Indian skipper is a “class” player and doesn’t have many weaknesses.

During India’s chase of 274 in the second ODI in Auckland, Southee bowled a peach of a delivery to disturb the woodwork and send Kohli back to the dressing room on his individual score of 15.

It was the ninth time when Southee got the priced wicket of Kohli across formats, highest by any bowler in international cricket.

England’s James Anderson and Graeme Swann come second in the list as they both have dismissed Kohli eight times across formats. Morne Morkel, Nathan Lyon, Adam Zampa and Ravi Rampaul all stand third with seven dismissals of the Indian skipper.

“He’s obviously a class player and doesn’t have many weaknesses. The wicket offered a little bit of assistance with the new ball and if you got it in the right area there was enough there to ask a few questions,” Southee was quoted as saying by stuff.co.nz.

“I guess it’s your job to take wickets and it’s always nice when you get the key players in the opposition out. He’s a great player and been in great form, especially in run chases he’s been exceptional. It’s always nice to see the back of him,” he added.

Southee also expressed happiness with the way the team came back from the debacle in T20I and win the ODI series.

“It is always great to play India. Obviously the T20 series did not go according to plan but the one-day games have been great. The one-day side played some great cricket for a while although we are missing a couple of guys,” the right-arm pacer said.

He also said that the hosts would like to go for the kill and win the third and final ODI as well.

“We will do what we do and results will take care of itself but winning is always nice. We want to keep playing the way we have been playing and it is nice to win the series already but to win another game, it is always nice,” he said.

International

Kane Williamson & Co move to Maldives after entry in England delayed

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New Zealand Test players Kane Williamson, Mitchell Santner and Kyle Jamieson, who were playing in the Indian Premier League (IPL), have opted to spend extra days in Maldives instead of India after their entry in England was delayed by a week.

The three have flown to Maldives from where they will travel to England after about 10 days. They were supposed to fly to England from New Delhi on May 11 according to initial plans after the postponement of IPL.

“There have been changes to the arrangements for New Zealand’s UK-bound Test contingent, with Kane Williamson, Mitchell Santner, Kyle Jamieson, and physio Tommy Simsek, transferring to the Maldives (rather than staying in New Delhi) ahead of travelling to England,” said a statement from New Zealand Cricket.

“The decision for this group to transfer to the Maldives was taken after advice that their entry into the UK, initially thought to be about May 11, was likely to be delayed a further week,” the statement added.

Williamson, Santner and Jamieson are part of New Zealand’s Test squad that will play two Test matches against England — between June 2 and 14 as well as the World Test Championship final against India from June 18.

“Blackcaps (New Zealand team) trainer Chris Donaldson, who initially signalled his intention to return home on one of the NZ-bound charter flights before returning to England, has instead opted to remain with the UK-bound players and is also in the Maldives,” the statement further said.

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Play IPL in England in September as top players will be there: Kevin Pietersen

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Kevin Pietersen.

The availability of players from world’s top two T20 Internationals teams — England and India — should prompt the Indian cricket board (BCCI) to host the remainder of the Indian Premier League (IPL) matches in England in September, said former England captain Kevin Pietersen.

The IPL was postponed indefinitely last week, after just 29 matches, as Covid-19 cases emerged in the bio-bubble.

The BCCI, which was left red-faced, is mulling over a window and venues to complete the tournament which still has 31 matches left.
Pietersen said that the matches should be held immediately after the India-England series in September.

“I have seen people talking about the UAE as a possible destination to finish the IPL in September but I actually think that the IPL should move to the UK,” said Pietersen in his blog on betway.com.

“There is a window in September after the England v India Test series has finished. All the best Indian players would already be there and all of the best English players would be available as well,” added the South African-born English player who was commentating at the IPL.

“Mid-to-late September is the most beautiful time in the UK. They could use Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham and the two London grounds… There is also a good chance that crowds will be allowed in the grounds and there will be great atmospheres,” he further added.

“I have played internationals against India – one in particular in a World T20 against India at Lord’s – when it has felt like an away game because of how well Indian cricket is supported in the UK.”

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Mike Hussey and Balaji air-lifted to Chennai, put in isolation

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Mike Hussey and Lakshmipathy Balaji, the Covid-19 affected members of Chennai Super Kings’ coaching staff, have been flown to Chennai from Delhi in an air ambulance by their franchise and kept in isolation at a hotel in the city.

An official on Thursday told IANS, “They have been flown to Chennai in an air ambulance and have been kept at the Taj Club House in isolation.”

Both Hussey and Balaji had tested positive and were left behind as the rest of the team members, who reported negative tests, flew to Chennai soon after the Indian Premier League (IPL) was suspended on Tuesday.

While Balaji will then leave for home, Hussey will most probably be flown on a chartered plane to Maldives and stay there for a while before departing to Australia.

All of Hussey’s fellow Australians, who were part of the Indian Premier League — players, members of the coaching staff, commentators and other support staff — left for Maldives on Thursday morning.

They will do a two-week long quarantine before leaving for Australia.

The Australian government has banned flights from India till May 15.

After three Aussie players — Adam Zampa, Kane Richardson and Andrew Tye — had left for Australia earlier during the tournament after getting an inkling that the government would ban flights, commentator Michael Slater and umpire Paul Reiffel tried to leave but couldn’t since the ban was already underway.

Slater later escaped to the Maldives where the rest of the Aussies joined him.

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