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Saturday,08-May-2021

International

We’ll be alright of we show consistency: Quinton de Kock

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Heinrich Klaasen’s maiden international hundred followed by a clinical bowling performance led by Lungi Ngidi helped South Africa to 74-run win over Australia in the first ODI between the two sides at Paarl. Proteas skipper Quinton de Kock said that consistency is what the hosts are looking for at a time when the team has been thrown into a transitional period which has seen them without a series win across formats for nearly a year.

“Pleased with how the boys went about it today,” said De Kock in the post-match presentation. “Klaasen batted really well. Lungi was also exceptional with the ball. We know what we have down the order with Miller.

“Matter of being consistent with what we do, then we’ll be alright. Lungi is enjoying that leadership role. Good to see him like this.”

De Kock took over the captaincy in limited overs from Faf du Plessis in January. “It’s been alright (captaincy). I’ve always said that I need my keeping to help me with my captaining. Don’t think it’ll be the same effect if I go out in the outfield. Still feeling fresh, still feeling good,” said the 27-year-old.

Klaasen’s ton took South Africa out of choppy waters and into the driver’s seat. He finished 123 not out and took his team to 291/7 after coming in at 48/3 in the 10th over.

“Great feeling, that’s why that celebration came out. Pure emotion for all the hard work done as a youngster. Almost like another comeback after two weeks again. Just sticking to my gameplan and performing for the team. Kyle also played incredibly well on debut. Just had to go deep (after being reduced to 48/3). David let me play my game. He took a lot of pressure off me,” he said.

The second of the three-match ODI series will be played in Blomfontein on Wednesday.

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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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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