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Recent Match Report – Team Buttler vs Team Stokes Warm Up 2020

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Team Stokes 233 and 157 for 4 (Bairstow 39, Sibley 38) drew with Team Buttler 287 for 5 dec and 200 for 6 dec (Pope 55 not out)

England’s final preparations for the long-awaited return of Test cricket were boosted on and off the field on Friday, with Sam Curran testing negative for Covid-19 and a handful of key batsmen spending important time at the crease.

Curran’s all-clear was perhaps the most important development of the day, removing the need for a fresh examination of the much-discussed ‘bio-secure bubble’ at the Ageas Bowl ahead of Wednesday’s #raisethebat series opener against the West Indies.

The all-rounder emerged from self-isolation in his hotel room to take in the final session of a drawn internal clash between Team Stokes and Team Buttler, during which five of England’s likeliest top six enjoyed valuable workouts. The game finished with Stokes’ side 157 for 4 in a nominal chase of 255 – the final equation having only been set up by Jos Buttler’s second declaration.

Now it is over to the selectors to fill in the blanks, with a 22-man squad due to be named on Saturday morning, cutting eight names from the original training group of 30. As many as seven of those could be listed as reserves, living and training on-site in Southampton but largely in support of a core group.

Ollie Pope was the day’s top-scorer, pleasingly into fully fluent mode with a rapid 55 not out, while openers Rory Burns and Dom Sibley, Zak Crawley and Stokes himself each passed 30 to bank useful middle practice before the real thing.

Joe Denly conspicuously failed to join them among the runs, lbw second ball to Jack Leach, but the belated appearance of Dan Lawrence at No.7 suggests his place is safe for now.

There was greater clarity on the spinning position too, with Dom Bess’s status as the man in possession only underlined by expensive spells from Leach and Moeen Ali. The pair did share five wickets for Team Stokes but three of those came from the care-free pursuit of declaration runs and both were far too expensive.

Leg-spinner Matt Parkinson picked up the wickets of Jonny Bairstow and Sibley in the concluding session, only for Stokes to cool his momentum by launching him for 22 in a over.

The day began with Mark Wood taking on the role of the absent Barmy Army, waving a flag on top of the pavilion as he sang his team-mates onto the field with a burst of ‘Jerusalem’. That proved a rare break to the silence England have found so unusual this week, with some suggestion that artificial noise could be piped into the venue for the Test match.

ALSO READ: Sam Curran tests negative for Covid-19 after sickness bout

Resuming 54 ahead of Stokes’ side, Team Buttler’s opening pair of Burns and James Bracey put on care-free stand of 61 in the morning. Bracey, whose day one 85 proved the top score of the match, was first down for 22, top-edging Stokes to fine leg, before Leach trapped new man Denly clean in front for one. That was a rare victory for Leach, who leaked five sixes and looks short of rhythm.

Moeen was also loose but had the satisfaction of bowling Burns on the back foot for 35 before lunch. Runs flowed freely in the afternoon, Pope scoring with consummate freedom as he shared 50-run stands with Buttler (35) and Chris Woakes (37), who were both caught in the deep.

Lawrence’s demotion down the order, and ultimate demise for 6, concluded the innings at 200 for 4.

Bairstow was invited to open alongside Sibley for the fourth innings, suggesting a place in the 22 awaits him, and the pair added 70. Parkinson accounted for both, caught at cover and stumped respectively, but three huge sixes and a reverse sweep for four in a solitary over off the bat of Stokes proved the end of his stint.​

The soon-to-be Test captain finished unbeaten on 37 from just 17 deliveries, while Crawley chimed in with a bright 34 before falling lbw to Wood. Bess ushered in the early finish when he dismissed Moeen for six, underlining his new status as the man in possession of the slow bowling berth.



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Bangladesh news – Abdur Razzak to join BCB’s selection panel

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He will join as a third selector and will join former captains Minhajul Abedin, the panel chief, and Habibul Bashar

The Bangladesh Cricket Board has named left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak as the third senior selector, to join former captains Minhajul Abedin, the panel chief, and Habibul Bashar. Razzak, who played 200 international matches between 2004 and 2018 and, at 38, continues to be an active cricketer, will have to retire from the game to take up the new job.

“My playing experience will certainly be valuable in this regard,” Razzak told ESPNcricinfo. “I used to play cricket, and now I have to help build the national team. I have been captaining in domestic cricket for a long time and I have often helped form teams. It has usually gone well. But the stakes are higher here, and the expectations are more. But still, I believe I can manage it.

“I am pretty sure I have to (retire). I haven’t mentioned it yet since I am awaiting the appointment letter but certainly when I join this new job, I have to quit (playing).”

Razzak was the first Bangladesh bowler to pick up 200 ODI wickets – he has 207 from 153 outings – and, despite not being a frontline batsman, is the holder of the record for the fastest half-century by a Bangladeshi in ODI cricket – 21 balls, joint with Mohammad Ashraful. He also made a comeback in the Test team against Sri Lanka in 2018 after a four-year break, which turned out to be his last international outing.

Over the years, he has been a domestic giant, with 137 first-class appearances. He has taken 634 wickets in them with 41 five-fors. He is also the first Bangladeshi bowler to bag 600 first-class wickets and has won nine domestic first-class titles with Khulna Division and South Zone.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84



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Recent Match Report – Rajasthan vs BIHAR 4th quarter final 2020/21

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Rajasthan will meet Tamil Nadu in the first semi-final on Friday

Rajasthan 164 for 5 (Lomror 78*, Aman 2-31) beat Bihar 148 for 4 (Mahrour 68*, Bishnoi 1-34) by 16 runs

Bihar’s spirited fight was extinguished by a much-experienced Rajasthan, who became the fourth semi-finalist at the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. They will play Tamil Nadu, last year’s runners-up in the first semi-final on Friday, with Punjab clashing against Baroda later that evening.

Victory was set-up by Mahipal Lomror, who smashed an unbeaten 37-ball 78 at No. 4 to inject momentum and respectability to Rajasthan’s batting show. Openers Bharat Sharma and Ankit Lamba made 38 apiece too, as Rajasthan posted a competitive 164 for 5 after Ashok Menaria elected to bat.

Lomror, who equalled his previous best of 78, steered the innings after the openers fell in quick succession. He smashed five fours and as many sixes, after coming in to bat in the 10th over.

Bihar opted to preserve wickets in the first half and then attempt a heist. They were helped along the way by Babul Kumar (24), Mangal Mahrour, who finished unbeaten on 68 off 58 balls and Vikash Yadav (27 off 17 balls)

They got into a position from where they needed 45 off the last three overs with a set Mahrour looking to do the unthinkable, but perhaps they left themselves with a little too much to do.

Khaleel Ahmed, the left-arm pace spearhead, conceded only eight off the penultimate over to leave Bihar with 27 off the last over, which was a tad too many. They eventually fell short by 16 runs.

However, Bihar will take back with them the experience of having come through a tough qualifying pool, winning all their five games in the league phase. They may just wonder if they left things for a little too late on the flight home.



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Former India captain Sourav Ganguly hospitalised again with ‘chest discomfort’

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The former India captain will undergo a stenting procedure on Thursday

Former India captain and BCCI president Sourav Ganguly has been hospitalised for the second time this month after complaining of “chest discomfort”. It is understood that Ganguly complained of restlessness on Tuesday evening and was admitted to the Apollo Gleneagles hospital in Kolkata on Wednesday, and will undergo a stenting procedure on Thursday.

A statement from the hospital on Wednesday evening provided the following details and updates:

  • Past history: He had pain [in the] chest on Jan 2, 2021. He came to Woodlands hospital then. Diagnosis was done as Triple vessel disease. He had three blocks in RCA [right coronary artery], LAD [left anterior descending artery], OM2 [second obtuse marginal].
  • Stenting was done on RCA on Jan 2, 2021. Medical Board was done with many experts including Dr Devi Shetty.
  • The advice was the rest two blocks were to be revasculalised/stenting to be done after 2-3 weeks.
  • Today is 25th day post PTCA [percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty, a procedure to open blocked coronary arteries and improve blood flow to the heart muscles].
  • He had chest discomfort today and he is taken to Apollo today. Dr Saptarshi Basu and Dr Saroj Mondal are attending. Dr Aftab Khan will do the stenting tomorrow in presence of Dr Devi Shetty.

This came after a statement from the hospital earlier in the day, which said, “There is no change in his parameters since his last hospitalization and his vital parameters are stable”.

Earlier in the month, Ganguly had been discharged from Woodlands Hospital following treatment for a similar complaint, later described as a heart attack by doctors. He was said to have recovered after the angioplasty. After being discharged, Ganguly had been on oral medication and was to be “monitored by doctors and nurses on a daily basis at home”.

The MD and CEO of Woodlands Hospital, Dr Rupali Basu, had said at the time that Ganguly had no known comorbidities, but a family history of heart diseases, and that he had tested negative for Covid-19. His brother, former Bengal cricketer and current Cricket Association of Bengal joint secretary Snehasish Ganguly, underwent a successful angioplasty last week, also at the Apollo Gleneagles Hospital.

One of the expert consultants, renowned cardiologist Dr Devi Shetty, had said during the discharge that Ganguly had no heart damage.

“Did he have a heart damage? No. He had a blockage and he was getting some discomfort, but at the right time he landed in the right hospital and he had the right treatment,” Shetty had said at the time. “His heart is today as strong as it was when Sourav was 20 years old. I want everyone to understand that he didn’t have a major cardiac event which has damaged his heart. He has a very, very strong heart.”



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