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ICC rankings women – Shafali Verma retains top spot Smriti Mandhana rises to sixth

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South Africa’s Sune Luus and Nadine de Klerk also gain following 2-1 series win in India

India Women’s T20I opener Shafali Verma has consolidated her position at the top of the batting rankings table in the format. Verma’s 30-ball 60 in the third T20I against South Africa last week helped her gain another 26 points to further strengthen her grip on the top spot. That has put Verma on a tally of 776 rating points, 35 ahead of the second-placed Beth Mooney. Verma’s opening partner Smriti Mandhana has also gained one place to sixth position following her unbeaten 48 off 28 balls in the same match which India went on to win by nine wickets for a consolation win in the series.

Among India’s bowlers, left-arm spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad‘s match-winning performance of 3 for 9 has lifted her 12 places to a career-best No. 13.

South Africa, who won the series 2-1 following their 4-1 ODI series win, had their own share of gains from the tour. Their captain Sune Luus rose one place to be No. 37 among batters, pacer Tumi Sekhukhune gained seven spots to be No. 42 in the bowlers’ charts.

Australia and New Zealand players also saw some gains following the first T20I between the sides in Hamilton on Sunday. Australia’s Ashleigh Gardner‘s unbeaten 73 helped her gain five places to reach a career-best No. 11 in the allrounders’ list, while her team-mate Georgia Wareham jumped two places to be placed at No. 10 among bowlers. Despite New Zealand’s six-wicket loss, Amy Satterthwaite, who hit a 31-ball 40, climbed a spot to be No. 27 among batters.



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Ind vs NZ – WTC winners to take home USD 1.6 million as well as Test Championship mace

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Runners-up to get USD 800,000; the teams will split the prize money in case there isn’t a result

The winners of the India vs New Zealand World Test Championship (WTC) final will take home USD 1.6 million, as well as the Test Championship Mace, while the losing team will get USD 800,000, the ICC has announced. In case there is a stalemate, or weather prevents a winner from being identified despite the reserve day, the two teams will split the total prize money of USD 2.4 million.

It will be the first time the sport will have official world champions in the format. “It (the WTC) has come to symbolise the best team in Test cricket, and with the Test championship now being used as the vehicle to identify the best team in Test cricket, the mace is on offer,” Geoff Allardice, the ICC chief executive, said in an interaction with members of the media.



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India Women in England 2021 – Nat Sciver

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England vice-captain hopes home conditions will help overcome visitors’ mix of experience and bold youth

Nat Sciver, England’s vice-captain, says the team will be wary of “fearless” elements within the India camp when they meet in a Test match for the first time in seven years from Wednesday in Bristol.

Sciver is one of six women in the current England squad who played in their last Test encounter with India at Wormsley, which the tourists won by six wickets. India have also named six players from that match in their current squad along with talented 17-year-old Shafali Verma.

Richa Ghosh, another 17-year-old who was recently added to India’s list of centrally contracted players, is not part of India’s combined Test and ODI group but is in the T20I squad for the multi-format series in which points are awarded across the standalone Test, three ODIs and three T20Is to decide the overall series winner.

“They’re an ever-growing side,” Sciver said. “There’s always a new, young talent on the team who isn’t afraid to go out there and show what they’ve got. They seem to be more fearless than I’ve seen before.

“Couple that with a lot of experience in their team – with Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami – they can be a very difficult side to beat. Hopefully in England, in our conditions, we can hone our skills and make sure that we’re doing the right things.

“Last time we played India, we weren’t very good in that Test match and we didn’t play to our potential so hopefully we can do better this time.”



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Australia players ‘100% behind’ head coach Justin Langer says Tim Paine

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Langer’s intensity as coach has led to murmurs of discontent in the Australian dressing room

Tim Paine has insisted that Justin Langer has the full support of the Australian playing group, even as rumblings of dressing-room discontent continued.

“We are all 100% behind JL and the job he is doing,” Paine told reporters in Brisbane where he was attending a coaching accreditation programme. “We had a team review at the end of the Indian series, which is a pretty common factor in professional sports. From Justin to our last player, everyone will get feedback they can improve on.



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