The former India wicketkeeper, who is part of Mumbai Indians’ coaching staff, is asymptomatic
Former India wicketkeeper Kiran More, who is part of the Mumbai Indians’ coaching set-up, has tested positive for Covid-19. More, who is a talent scout as well as wicketkeeping consultant with Mumbai, has isolated himself in Chennai, where the defending champions will play their initial set of matches, including the IPL opener against the Royal Challengers Bangalore on April 9.
As a precautionary measure, the Mumbai Indians cancelled their training session on Tuesday, the day More tested positive. ESPNcricinfo understands that rest of the Mumbai contingent underwent a rapid testing process and returned negative results. It could not be confirmed whether Mumbai, who won their fifth IPL title last season, would resume training on Wednesday. After landing in Chennai, Mumbai have conducted two training sessions at Chepauk on April 2 and 4.
“Mr. More is currently asymptomatic and has been isolated,” the franchise said in a statement issued on Tuesday. “Mumbai Indians and Kiran More have followed all the BCCI health guidelines. The MI medical team will continue to monitor Mr. More’s health and abide by the BCCI protocols.”
While More joins a growing list of people in the IPL to have tested positive in the past week, his is among the rare cases of a person who has had to isolate after operating in a bubble.
It is understood that More had joined the franchise bubble in Mumbai in March, where the first phase of the preparatory camp was conducted. It was this bubble that the Indian players who took part in the England limited-overs series – including Rohit Sharma, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav – joined. The entire contingent then moved to Chennai on March 31 on a chartered flight. In Mumbai and Chennai, the franchise has rented an entire wing at team hotels exclusively, in order to reduce the chances of the bubble being breached.
In the pictures put out by the franchise on their social media, More can be seen attending team sessions in the past week both at the team hotel as well as at training sessions on the ground. It is understood that since the 2020 season, the franchise management led by the Mumbai owners have insisted on showing an uncompromising attitude towards maintaining a foolproof bubble environment.
Every member of the Mumbai contingent, including their family members who will be travelling during the IPL with them, had to do three RT-PCR tests before moving into the bubble. After going into the bubble too, they will need to undergo a hard quarantine, along with frequent testing daily, which is separate to the IPL protocols. It is understood that the franchise has been conducting rapid tests daily in the past few days, including on Tuesday.
According to the IPL protocols, asymptomatic cases or people with mild Covid-19 symptoms have to be isolated for a minimum of 10 days in a designated area outside of the biosecure bubble. The isolation begins from the time the symptoms are detected or from the date when the positive test is returned. The person can return to the bubble only after clearing two RT-PCR tests on the last two days of the isolation period. In the case of players, they must then undergo cardiac screening before resuming training.
Nagraj Gollapudi is news editor at ESPNcricinfo
Recent Match Report – Yorkshire vs Northants Group 3 2021
Northamptonshire 234 and 94 for 4 need a further 126 to beat Yorkshire 206 and 247 (Willey 41*, Parnell 5-79)
Yorkshire’s victory from a parlous position at Hove last week caused their coach, Andrew Gale, to praise their character and resilience. If they repeat the feat against Northants at Headingley then similar acclamation will surely follow. Why, Yorkshire grit might even get a mention.
Yorkshire are slight favourites, with Northants 94 for 4 in pursuit of 220, but it is foolhardy to suggest as much. If the Headingley Cricketing Gods get the slightest indication that victory is already being anticipated then expect the sun to shine, the pitch to play with monotonous predictability and Northants to scoot home soon after lunch. This not a ground on which you get ahead of yourself.
What is abundantly clear is that, for the second successive week, Yorkshire are involved in an engrossing contest that has shown Championship cricket at its best. That is partly due to Yorkshire’s batting frailties – and that vulnerability remains – but largely because both surfaces, whether encouraging spin or seam, have provided a balance between bat and ball. Northants, like Sussex, have been worthy opponents.
Spare me this contention that the prime duty of the Championship is to produce utterly flat pitches so potential Test cricketers can learn to concentrate. If you want to learn to concentrate, try mindfulness, memory tests or read a book or two.
Northants, like Sussex, have exchanged punch for punch, but their chances diminished the moment their one batsman of true quality, the South African Ricardo Vasconcelos, ran himself out for 41 when he pushed the ball to David Willey’s left-hand at mid-on and was beaten by a direct hit. If anybody can be forgiven a momentary misjudgement, perhaps someone fulfilling the role of opening batter, wicketkeeper and captain could.
Two other wickets fell in successive balls to Jordan Thompson, inswingers at the end of his first over and start of his second removing Ben Curran and Charlie Thurston. Thompson, combative with bat and ball, is coming into his own, at 24. Gale’s message that he is “my type of cricketer” is a good one.
At 43 for 3 overnight, only 15 runs on, Yorkshire clearly had their work cut out to fashion a victory that would maintain their unbeaten record. That they made 247 and set Northants 220 to win on a third day that provided the toughest batting conditions of the match would have given them considerable satisfaction.
Northants’ chief threat rested with the South African Wayne Parnell who took five wickets in an innings for the second time to finish with match figures of 10 for 143. Plus most of the 31 byes, of course, because at regular intervals Northants’ aggrieved stand-in wicketkeeper Vasconcelos was left sprawling in the dirt, rising more slowly on each occasion, sometimes with hands on hips in exasperation at lavish late swing.
This was only Parnell’s second career 10-wicket haul, which, at 31, is quite a surprise, because when the ball swings, he is quite a handful. He quickly removed the left-handed Gary Ballance with an outswinger and in his following over, picked off the nightwatchman, Steve Patterson.
In one of Parnell’s most wayward overs, Johnny Tattersall picked the ball of his pads for 14. But Tattersall, who had played soundly, then deflected a back-of-a-length delivery from Taylor to the keeper, giving Tom Taylor his only wicket of the match. Yorkshire were 86 for 6 and in the mire, but they don’t just bat deep, they bat deep with considerable nous.
Partnerships of 59 in 17 from Dom Bess and Harry Brook for the seventh wicket and and 65 in 19 for the ninth wicket between Thompson and Willey underlined that Yorkshire’s lower orders were not spooked by the moving ball, and Northants’ seamers could not quite sustain the pressure. All made between 37 and 41 in a concerted team response.
Presumably Brook’s pronounced back and across movement has been influenced by Ballance, whose shift deep into his crease before the bowler delivers caused such debate during his England career. Slightly-built, Brook cuts a fretful figure at the crease, an exhausting collection of short walks, tugs of kit and head jerks, which leaves the concern about that initial foot movement that he might not be able to spare the calories. Bess, by contrast, stands still and ruminates. Both, in their own way, began the fightback.
Brooke might have fallen to Taylor on 23, but Vasconcelos dived over one. Instead, he fell to the first ball he received after lunch, another victim for Parnell, who drew him into driving at a wide one.
The appearance of Simon Kerrigan’s left-arm spin was a sign that Northants needed to block an end in case they needed a second new ball. When the ball was brought on for the umpires in case they needed it, it must have reminded Willey that, at nine down, he needed to up the tempo.
Three successive sixes against Gareth Berg took Yorkshire’s lead beyond 200. Yorkshire grit, if Northampton born. The last of the sixes appeared to damage the “R” in Yorkshire on the electronic scoreboard, so Gale should be particularly careful about talking about Willey’s “Yorkshire grit” in case they try to put his words up on the big screen…
David Hopps writes on county cricket for ESPNcricinfo @davidkhopps
County Championship 2021 – Chris Wright seven-for keeps Leicestershire in victory pursuit | Cricket
Leicestershire 421 and 125 for 3 lead Gloucestershire 275 (Wright 7-53) by 271 runs
Chris Wright‘s career-best 7 for 53 gave Leicestershire a chance to press for a first victory of the season as they took a lead of 271 over Gloucestershire by the end of day three. Wright almost single-handedly bowled the hosts out for 275 at Bristol, to take a first-innings lead of 146, before his side’s batsmen made 125 for 3 by the close.
It was a 14th first-class five-for for Wright, who turns 36 later this summer and is in the final year of his contract. His four wickets on the second evening brought about a collapse of 5 for 22 that put Leicestershire on top and he added three more on the third day. But the resistance started by Tom Smith and George Hankins on day two continued as Gloucestershire lasted another 38 overs.
Resuming 176 for 6 needing another 96 to save the follow-on, Gloucestershire lost Hankins in the eighth over of the morning, lbw to Wright when he appeared to be outside the line of off stump. Hankins’ slow trudge off suggested bat was involved too but he went for 37. The wicket gave Wright a third five-wicket bag for Leicestershire and ended a stand of 73 for the sixth wicket.
Wright thought he’d struck again almost immediately as he bowled Dan Worrall for 1 only to have overstepped. Worrall only made 10 more before lazily dragging a wide ball from Callum Parkinson into his stumps.
But Josh Shaw got together to form another stand with Smith. He struck Parkinson sweetly over mid-off for six and clipped Wright for three through midwicket to save the follow-on and he went on to make an unbeaten 41 – one shy of his career-best but a new high for Gloucestershire.
Smith survived, a little awkwardly at times, for 130 deliveries and his 47 that began on the second evening was a vital innings to give his second a second batting point and take more time out of the game. Rain delayed the start of the afternoon but Wright trapped Smith and No. 11 Dom Goodman to complete his haul and leave Leicestershire 53 overs to build their lead.
More rain and bad light took out some of those and they were 77 for 3 before Rishi Patel and Lewis Hill saw them to the close.
ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Match Preview – Royals vs Sunrisers, IPL 2021, 28th Match
Warner could make way for one of Roy or Holder as Sunrisers look to rejig personnel in search of elusive win
Desperate times reflect in radical measures. The Sunrisers Hyderabad replacing David Warner with Kane Williamson as captain might seem like one, but the move isn’t bereft of precedent or context. The Kolkata Knight Riders made a similar switch last year. This announcement, however, comes in the wake of Warner’s public owning up of “responsibility” for the team’s fifth defeat in six games, and a critique of a “harsh” selection call a game earlier.
The build-up to their clash on Sunday against the Rajasthan Royals remains wrapped in a degree of uncertainty. The franchise has made it clear that a change in their overseas combination for the game is imminent.
Like their opponent, the Royals, who have just one win more than the Sunrisers, are in pursuit of a turnaround. A gradual depletion of their overseas contingent, admitted Royals captain Sanju Samson after their seven-wicket defeat on Thursday, has been “tough” to contend with. The want of end-overs impetus has also hurt their campaign this season.
Recurrent erosion of momentum at the death, therefore, might warrant a review of their batting order, most notably the role of Shivam Dube. At No. 4, Dube’s strike rate has hovered between 29 and 113 in four innings this year, his 31-ball 35 playing a part in stalling the Royals to just 171 despite brisk, substantial knocks by the top three in the previous game. A promotion for David Miller to that position could translate into better use of quick-scoring weaponry available at their disposal.
Jason Roy, who was roped in as Mitchell Marsh’s replacement, or Jason Holder could be in line to get a game if Warner is left out. Senior pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar sat out the last two games because of a thigh strain he suffered on April 21. He is understood to have resumed bowling and could slot in for one of Siddarth Kaul or Sandeep Sharma.
The Royals fielded the same starting XI in their previous two outings. Their overseas roster has shrunk to just five members, with Rassie van der Dussen, who replaced Ben Stokes, still in quarantine. Any potential changes in the line-up for the face-off against the Sunrisers, therefore, would involve domestic personnel, which includes the likes of Mahipal Lomror, Shreyas Gopal, and Mayank Markande.
Rajasthan Royals: 1 Jos Buttler, 2 Yashasvi Jaiswal, 3 Sanju Samson (capt & wk), 4 David Miller, 5 Riyan Parag, 6 Rahul Tewatia, 7 Shivam Dube/Mahipal Lomror, 8 Chris Morris, 9 Jaydev Unadkat/Shreyas Gopal, 10 Chetan Sakariya, 11 Mustafizur Rahman
Sunrisers Hyderabad: 1 David Warner/ Jason Roy, 2 Jonny Bairstow (wk), 3, Manish Pandey, 4 Kane Williamson (captain), 5 Vijay Shankar, 6 Kedar Jadhav, 7 Rashid Khan, 8 J Suchith/ Abhishek Sharma, 9 Bhuvneshwar Kumar/Siddarth Kaul, 10 Sandeep Sharma, 11 Khaleel Ahmed
- Only two wickets, at an economy of 10.30, have come off the 27 overs of spin the Royals deployed in six games. That they are facing a side with the lowest boundary percentage, 46.77, against spin in this edition of the IPL should, however, encourage them to slot Gopal back into the XI or hand Mayank Markande his first game of the season, with a third frontline legspinner in KC Cariappa also in the squad. Gopal, despite having conceded at an economy of 12.50 in the six overs he has delivered across two games, remains the frontrunner among the trio to make the cut.
- Buttler’s 32-ball 41 on Thursday and Sanju Samson’s two back-to-back brisk 40-plus heading into Sunday’s game would inspirit the Royals in light of the pair’s inconsistent runs this season. Their performance against the Sunrisers attack, though, fall somewhat on the two ends of the spectrum: Buttler averages a mere 9.1 against them, scoring at 95 while Samson strikes at 126 and averages 44. Neither, however, have traditionally scored quickly of Rashid Khan – their strike is under 85 – so expect the Sunrisers to unleash their premier legspinner when either batter is in the middle.
Stats that matter
- Chris Morris’s 11 wickets in IPL 2021 put him in touching distance of bettering his best ever tally in a season – 15, achieved in the 2013 edition. No other Royals bowler has reached double figures in the wickets column yet this year.
- Warner’s strike rate of 110 this season is his lowest in the tournament since 2018 and the second-lowest among 11 regular openers since IPL 2020. Shubman Gill tops that list with 118, a shade poorer than Warner’s 126.
- One hit each will take Manish Pandey, who made his 150th IPL appearance on Thursday, to 100 sixes and 300 fours in the IPL.
Annesha Ghosh is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @ghosh_annesha
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