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India women’s team to play South Africa women in Lucknow

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This will be the first international cricket India women will play since the T20 World Cup final a year ago

The India women’s team are set to play their first game in a year since the Women’s T20 World Cup final on March 8, 2020. They will face South Africa women in a series of five ODIs and three T20Is in Lucknow, beginning on March 7.

The series was originally supposed to be held in Thiruvananthapuram, but the Kerala Cricket Association informed the BCCI about its inability to host the games as the ground has been “made available to the Indian military for a recruitment drive, without the KCA’s prior knowledge”, and it doesn’t have a venue with “appropriate broadcast facilities”.

The Karnataka Cricket Association was touted to then host the games in Bengaluru, but the Uttar Pradesh Cricket Association confirmed in a press release on Tuesday that all eight games would take place at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow.

India’s and South Africa’s squads for the ODIs and T20Is haven’t been announced yet.



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Recent Match Report – Australia vs New Zealand 4th T20I 2020/21

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On a tricky surface for strokeplay, Finch anchored the visitors before New Zealand’s batting folded

Australia 156 for 6 (Finch 79*, Sodhi 3-32) beat New Zealand106 (Jamieson 30, K Richardson 3-19) by 50 runs

A crucial innings from captain Aaron Finch on a tricky pitch, as he became Australia’s leading scorer in men’s T20Is, followed by a tight display in the field enabled them to take the series to a decider in Wellington on Sunday as the home side’s batting disappointed for the second game running.

On a surface being used for the fourth time in three days (with two more matches to come), scoring was much tougher than when Australia put more than 200 on the board in the previous game. New Zealand had control for the majority of the time in the field – Ish Sodhi and Trent Boult taking five wickets between them – but Finch took full toll in the final over of the innings as Kyle Jamieson was plundered for 26.

New Zealand were under pressure from the start of the chase and could not make a dent on the target in the powerplay. Australia’s three spinners – Ashton Agar, Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell – produced combined figures of 11-0-49-6.

New Zealand’s bowlers hold sway

The signs were there early that scoring would not be as easy as in the previous match, when Mitchell Santner, who missed the third game under Covid-19 protocols, was introduced in the third over. He removed Matthew Wade third ball, continuing the wicketkeeper’s unconvincing series, and immediately got turn from the surface. He would bowl his four overs for just 16 including 13 dot deliveries, highlighting what New Zealand had missed on Wednesday.

Boult and Sodhi did the damage to the middle order as Australia struggled to increase the tempo. Boult removed Maxwell just when he was threatening something destructive again and produced a terrific yorker to remove Agar, who had been promoted to provide a left-right combination. When Sodhi took his third wicket, removing Mitchell Marsh to a top-edged sweep, Australia were in trouble at 116 for 6 heading into the closing overs.

Finch’s reward for going deep

At the start of the 18th over, Finch was 41 at a run-a-ball. He had been starved of strike for significant parts of the innings and the nature of the surface made strokeplay difficult. However, by hanging in, it meant that Australia had a set batsman for the closing overs. He went to a half-century off 47 deliveries and then it was the final over where he really made it count against the struggling Jamieson who has now conceded 175 runs in the series. The day after Kieron Pollard had taken six sixes off an over, Finch managed four – the first two over extra cover and then a brace over the leg side. A player who had been under scrutiny just a few days ago had made back-to-back crucial contributions.

Powerplay squeeze

Finch was quick to follow the spin playbook, handing the first over of New Zealand’s innings to Agar – fresh off his six-wicket haul in the third game – and he went for just a single to set the tone. Agar would end up bowling three of the powerplay overs, conceding just seven runs, and in that third over he removed the key figure of Martin Guptill, who tried to clear the off side but was superbly caught by Maxwell who showed some neat footwork to stay inside the rope. When Riley Meredith went for just two in the sixth over, New Zealand were stalled on 25 for 1 with Tim Seifert having used up 21 balls for 15.

Pressure tells

Having soaked up so many deliveries, Seifert had to play the Finch-type innings but his difficult stay was ended when he chopped on against Kane Richardson as the asking rate climbed over 10 an over. Williamson rarely does ugly at the crease, but was caught at point off the back of the bat as he attempted to sweep Maxwell whose offspin proved highly valuable. It quickly became a forgettable performance from the home side with Glenn Phillips and Devon Conway ending up at the same end in a mix-up. In a way, though, New Zealand’s defeat is a good thing because with the relaxation of Covid-19 alert levels tomorrow a crowd is now able to attend Wellington on Sunday. They have a decider to enjoy.

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo



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Recent Match Report – Tasmania vs Victoria 15th Match 2020/21

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Tasmania hit back in the final session but Peter Handscomb’s good form continued

Victoria 3 for 70 (Handscomb 52*) trail Tasmania 188 (Doran 52, Boland 4-44) by 118 runs

Tasmania kept themselves in the contest on the opening at the MCG after a disappointing batting display saw them dismissed for 188. Scott Boland continued his excellent season with a four-wicket haul while Nic Maddinson made an impression in the field with two direct-hit run-outs in the space of two overs.

Jackson Bird struck twice in the final session, while Beau Webster had Marcus Harris caught behind trying to leave the ball, but captain Peter Handscomb continued his impressive form with an unbeaten half-century – just the second batsman to pass fifty in the day alongside Jake Doran.

Tasmania were forced into a late change when Tim Paine woke up feeling ill and was ruled out under Covid-19 protocols. It meant a hasty journey from Hobart for Alex Doolan as the only spare player the visitors had the squad was seamer Gabe Bell. By the time Doolan arrived at the MCG, Tasmania were two down but he was able to slot in at No. 6 where he made 12 before shouldering arms at Mitch Perry.

Alongside Boland, who started and ended Victoria’s wicket-taking, James Pattinson bowled with good pace and the delivery to remove Caleb Jewell, which climbed to take the edge was especially eye-catching.

After the tea interval, Maddinson pulled off two moments of brilliance in the field: firstly he hit direct from mid-on to find Doran short with an underarm flick and then hit from the in-field to remove Jarrod Freeman.



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Recent Match Report – NZ Women vs ENG Women 2nd T20I 2020/21

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England wrap up a comfortable win in the second T20I to go 2-0 up with one game to go

England Women 124 for 4 (Beaumont 63, Knight 39, Mair 2-22) beat New Zealand Women 123 for 9 (Satterthwaite 49, Davies 4-23, Sciver 2-25, Glenn 2-27) by six wickets

Opener Tammy Beaumont‘s 63 combined with superb bowling efforts from Freya Davies, Nat Sciver and Sarah Glenn helped England Women win the second T20I against New Zealand Women and seal the three-match series with one game to go.

After New Zealand were put in to bat, Sophie Ecclestone and Davies did the early damage by removing the openers within the first five overs. Amy Satterthwaite and Amelia Kerr then combined for a 58-run third-wicket stand and pushed the scoring rate up as they stayed together till the 12th over, but a double-strike from legspinner Glenn took care of Kerr and Katey Martin, which pegged New Zealand back.

Davies then caused further damage, removing Satterthwaite for 49 in the 15th over, and that put a lid on the scoring in a big way. New Zealand were 98 for 5 at that point, and after that they added just 25 more runs to push their total to 123 for 9. Davies finished with career-best figures of 4 for 23, while Sciver and Glenn picked up two wickets each.

England started their chase briskly thanks to Beaumont, who hit seven fours and a six on her way to a 53-ball 63. Rosemary Mair removed Dani Wyatt and Sciver for paltry scores, but Beaumont partnered with captain Heather Knight – who made a run-a-ball 39 – for 83 runs to put England in a winning position. Though both of them were dismissed before the close, England cantered home with 16 balls in hand.

The third – and final – T20I will be played in Wellington on Sunday.



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