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Recent Match Report – England Women vs Pakistan Women, ICC Women’s Championship, 3rd ODI

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Pakistan 145 for 8 (Nahida Khan 55, Glenn 4-18) v England – Match abandoned

Legspinner Sarah Glenn claimed a four-wicket haul in only her third ODI but rain ruined the prospect of a result in the final match of the series between Pakistan and England. Having been put in to bat, Pakistan were 145 for 8 from 37.4 overs before the weather intervened, meaning England took the series 2-0.

Looking for their first ODI win over England, Pakistan made an impressive start in reaching 96 without loss. Glenn then removed both openers in consecutive overs, dismissing Javeria Khan for 37 and Nahida Khan for a fluent half-century.

The spin pairing of Glenn and Sophie Ecclestone wheeled their way through 16 overs in tandem, as England dragged the game back their way. Pakistan captain Bismah Maroof was caught behind off Ecclestone and Glenn bowled Kaynat Hafeez and Nida Dar to give her figures of 8-1-18-4.

“I was really happy to get four wickets today, but it’s a shame the rain came and the game had to be abandoned,” Glenn said. “We came back really well with the ball after Pakistan had started on top. We kept it tight and we got our rewards.

“I’ve really enjoyed the three matches and it’s good to come out with a series win. The girls have been really welcoming and I’m looking forward to the T20s.”

Anya Shrubsole returned from an expensive opening spell to pick up three wickets, with only Umaima Sohail’s unbeaten 27 offering much in the way of middle-order resistance for Pakistan. There was also an economical performance with the ball from Freya Davies, making her ODI debut, but England’s chances of claiming a third consecutive win were ended by the rain.

The result means England finished their ICC Women’s Championship campaign with 14 wins from 21 games, placing them second on the table behind Australia. Pakistan moved up a spot to fourth, level on 16 points with South Africa, but having played three games more. The top four teams qualify automatically for the 2021 World Cup.



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Dan Lawrence leaves England squad due to family bereavement

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Dan Lawrence has left the England bio-secure bubble due to a family bereavement, and will miss the chance to make his Test debut in Thursday’s second Test against Pakistan at the Ageas Bowl.

Lawrence, 23, had been named as one of England’s reserve batsmen for the Test leg of England’s summer, and had been a possible inclusion for the second Test following Ben Stokes’ departure from the squad due to his own family reasons.

Ollie Robinson, the fast bowler, was this week withdrawn from Sussex’s Bob Willis Trophy fixture against Kent to bolster England’s seam options ahead of the second Test. However, the management have chosen not to replace Lawrence in England’s 18-man party.

That means that Zak Crawley is the likely beneficiary of Stokes’ absence, having been omitted to include an extra seamer in the last two Tests. The uncapped James Bracey and Ben Foakes, both wicketkeeper-batsmen, are the other two batting options at England’s disposal.

One of the heroes of England’s victory on Saturday, Jos Buttler, produced his match-winning innings despite his father being taken into hospital during the match.

Speaking about the team environment before Lawrence’s news was made public, James Anderson praised the efforts that the current management go to, in particular the captain Joe Root and head coach Chris Silverwood, to ensure the players’ mental wellbeing is taken into account.

“I do think cricket is more empathetic now, yes,” Anderson said. “It has definitely changed for the better. We quite often take this game very seriously – I have done this week – and it is quite a big deal for some people.

“But there is nothing more important than family. It is something that certainly Joe and Chris have brought in under their leadership: family comes first. And this group of players rally round each other and help if there is anything that needs help.”



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IPL 2020: BCCI gets government go-ahead to conduct tournament in the UAE

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The BCCI has received the much-awaited permission from the Indian government to conduct the IPL in the UAE. Brijesh Patel, the IPL Governing Council chairman, has confirmed the development.

Although the BCCI had received an in-principle nod from the government, it was waiting for written permission to finalise the contract with the Emirates Cricket Board. Patel did not confirm the exact date, indicating the government permission came over the weekend.

The tournament will be played between September 19 and November 10 with 60 matches at three venues: Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. Although the tournament schedule has not yet been finalised, the eight teams have already been busy planning their travel to the UAE.

Last week the IPL sent the franchises a set of draft standing operating procedures [SOPs] for the tournament including a rigorous testing process which commences before the teams board the flight to the UAE. Team members would need to undergo multiple tests including three tests upon reaching the UAE which would also involve a week-long quarantine before they can start training.

The IPL made it clear that both team members as well as owners would need to strictly adhere to the rules laid out to be part of the biosecure bubble. Any breach of the protocols, the IPL warned, would be “punishable” under the tournament’s code of conduct.

According to the draft SOPs, if the owners and family members step outside the bubble, they will need to understood a week-long quarantine and undergo fresh testing before re-entering the biosecure environment.

During a virtual meeting last week, officials from various franchises communicated a set of concerns they had with the draft SOPs. One key concern was whether the quarantine measures could be relaxed for English and Australian players arriving from the UK after their limited overs series.



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SLC hopeful LPL can start on August 28 despite Covid-19 hurdles

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Sri Lanka Cricket remains optimistic the Lankan Premier League (LPL) can begin on August 28, although government health approvals are yet to come through less than three weeks out from the scheduled start.

SLC has now found an organiser for the tournament, however, signing a five-year deal with the Dubai-based Innovative Production Group (IPG), a company that has previously been involved in Pakistan Super League production and broadcasts. As per the terms of the deal, it is now down to IPG to find franchisees for the five proposed LPL teams, as well as secure sponsors, and conduct an LPL draft. According to officials 70 overseas players have expressed a strong interest in playing.

The major concern, however, is the quarantine period overseas players will be required to undergo upon arrival in Sri Lanka. Teams are not due to be finalised until next week, which means players are unlikely to arrive more than 10 days out from the scheduled start. At present, new arrivals on the island are expected to spend at least seven days in quarantine (they have the option of doing so at specially designated luxury hotels), which means players would have only a few days’ preparation with their teams, at most.

“We are ready to start on the 28th, but there are some areas where we will have to be in line with the health authorities,” SLC vice-president Ravin Wickramaratne told ESPNcricinfo. “By the 13th they will give us the guidelines as to what to do with the players. We had a couple of meetings with the health authorities, who have come up with health guidelines for tourists. They’d have to be in quarantine for seven days, but then their movements are restricted. We are trying to see whether foreign players can be excepted. We are not the experts, so we will wait for their guidance.”

Also posing a significant challenge is the scarcity of international flights into Colombo. Right now, tourism has ground to a halt, and repatriation flights account for the majority of arrivals.

“The other concern is some of the players coming from Australia, South Africa and England,” Wickramaratne said. “I think in England airports are operational, but other countries – their airports are closed. That’s what we will have to look into, whether we get those players to a central point and then charter them here. But we are still waiting for IPG to inform us who are the players, and where they are coming from.”

While government approval is being awaited, talks are understood to be ongoing between IPG and potential franchisees. IPG hopes to have awarded franchise rights by the end of the week, with the company apparently holding discussions with franchise owners from established leagues such as the IPL and PSL.

According to Wickramaratne, all franchisees who come on board will also be vetted by the ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit before the tournament can take place. In 2012, SLC had hosted a franchise-based T20 tournament that was dogged by corruption allegations, with Lasith Malinga even reporting a suspicious approach from a figure aligned with his then franchise.

Although originally SLC had announced that the tournament would be played in its four day-night venues, Wickramaratne has confirmed that the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo is currently out of commission due to ongoing renovation work. The tournament will instead only be played in Hambantota, Pallekele and Dambulla, which means Sri Lanka’s most populous city will not see any of the action.



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