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Eng vs NZ 2021 – ‘Now you know what it’s like, bro’

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Having waited so long for Test debut, opener etches his name on away room board at first attempt

Devon Conway has had to wait a long time for his chance in Test cricket. He moved from his native South Africa in his mid-20s to try to establish himself in a new country, then had to serve a three-year period before becoming eligible to represent New Zealand. He made his T20I debut last year and an ODI debut in March (current averages: 59.12 and 75.00), before being called into the Test squad to tour England.
Once over here, there was another wait to see whether he would get his chance – finally confirmed by New Zealand’s coach, Gary Stead, a couple of days out from the Lord’s Test and made public on the eve of the match by captain Kane Williamson. Then, after finally donning the whites and walking down the steps to the middle after Williamson had won the toss, Conway waited patiently at the non-striker’s end as Tom Latham faced 18 consecutive deliveries from James Anderson and Stuart Broad.

It proved well worth the wait for Conway, who finished his first day in Test cricket 136 not out, having marshalled a strong showing for New Zealand from start to finish. “It was a pretty surreal moment, I couldn’t have dreamed for a better start to my Test career,” he said afterwards.

“It took maybe three or four overs to face my first ball, but I was pretty grateful for that. It gave me an opportunity to have look at the bowling from the non-striker’s end. I’ve never faced Broady and Anderson [before], so it gave me a chance to see how it was going off the wicket and get some clues from Tommy Latham. The communication was good and clear, so it gave me a chance before that first ball.”

The details of Conway’s decision to move from Gauteng, having struggled to break through from South Africa’s provincial set-up, to then churning out so many runs it was impossible for New Zealand to ignore him have been well rehearsed. But to have walked straight into the Test arena and onto the Lord’s honours board is something beyond the imaginations of most.

“That [scoring a century on debut] never came across my mind,” Conway said. “Just getting a Test debut, a chance to play at this level, was all I thought about. Very happy, grateful for the opportunity from Cricket Wellington and also the Black Caps as well. A pretty special feeling, and one I certainly didn’t think about when I made that move.

“When we arrived at Lord’s a couple days ago we walked into the changing room and got the opportunity to have a look at the all the legends and the names up on that honours board. Funny enough I had a conversation with Kane asking what it feels like to see your name on that board [for Williamson’s hundred at Lord’s in 2015], and the first thing he said when I went up into the changing room was ‘Now you know what it’s like, bro’. It’s pretty cool, it’s a great place and I’m grateful my name can go up there.”

Besides having his name forever etched in the away dressing room, several other records fell to Conway, who was 136 not out overnight: the highest score by a debutant at Lord’s, eclipsing Sourav Ganguly’s arrival on the ground in 1996; the first overseas opener ever to score a century on debut in England; the fourth-highest score by a New Zealand debutant, with power to add.



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SL vs Ind 2021 – Shikhar Dhawan to captain India on limited-overs tour of Sri Lanka

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Bhuvneshwar Kumar named vice-captain, Chetan Sakariya and Nitish Rana among new faces in the mix

Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Nitish Rana, K Gowtham and Chetan Sakariya have all received maiden call-ups to the national team, figuring in the 20-man India squad for the white-ball series in Sri Lanka, scheduled for July. The second-string squad – the main team will be in England at the time – will be captained by opening batter Shikhar Dhawan, who has never led India previously, and will also see the international comeback of fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who has been appointed vice-captain.
India’s Sri Lanka tour comprises six matches: three ODIs (on July 13, 16 and 18), followed by three T20Is (July 21, 23, 25). Former India captain Rahul Dravid has been confirmed as the head coach, although the BCCI did not announce the coaching staff for the side on Thursday when it announced the squad, which will have five reserve bowlers.

Squad: Shikhar Dhawan (capt), Bhuvneshwar Kumar (vice-capt), Prithvi Shaw, Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Suryakumar Yadav, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Nitish Rana, Ishan Kishan (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Yuzvendra Chahal, Rahul Chahar, K Gowtham, Krunal Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini, Chetan Sakariya

Net bowlers: Ishan Porel, Sandeep Warrier, Arshdeep Singh, R Sai Kishore, Simarjeet Singh

More to follow…



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County cricket 2021 – Kyle Jamieson signs for Surrey on short-term deal

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Fast bowler will head to Kia Oval at conclusion of the World Test Championship final

Kyle Jamieson, the New Zealand fast bowler, has signed a short-term deal for Surrey across formats, and will link up with the club at the conclusion of the World Test Championship final against India later this month.

Jamieson, who has been rested from the ongoing second Test against England after claiming three wickets in the opening match at Lord’s, will be available for the Vitality Blast London Derby against Middlesex at The Kia Oval on June 25, and will remain with the squad until their final group game in mid-July.

In that period, he will also be available for Surrey’s final two group games in the LV= Insurance County Championship, against Hampshire at The Ageas Bowl from July 4-7 and against Somerset at The Oval from July 11-14. This will be his first time playing in English domestic cricket.

“I’m really excited to get the chance to play some county cricket after the Black Caps tour,” Jamieson said. “Originally I didn’t think this opportunity would be possible with the schedule this year, but with how things have unfolded it’s great to be able to join Surrey and experience both T20 and first-class cricket.

“Playing county cricket is something I’ve always wanted to do in my career, so to have the chance to do so now is awesome. I’ve heard a lot of great things about county cricket, particularly T20 Blast nights at The Kia Oval, and can’t wait to take up the opportunity with Surrey to continue to learn and grow whilst trying my best to contribute to the teams’ success.”



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The Hundred 2021 – David Warner, Marcus Stoinis and Sophie Devine pull out of the Hundred

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ECB bracing for further withdrawals amid clashes with international tours and restrictions on overseas travel

David Warner, Marcus Stoinis and Sophie Devine have pulled out of the inaugural season of the Hundred, with the ECB bracing for further withdrawals amid clashes with international tours and restrictions on overseas travel.

Warner and Stoinis were both contracted by the Southern Brave on deals worth £100,000 and £80,000 respectively, but have opted to withdraw from the competition. Both players have been named in Australia’s preliminary squad for white-ball tours to the Caribbean and Bangladesh, which overlap with the Hundred’s window from July 21-August 21, but are expected to withdraw in order to spend time with their families.

Trevor Hohns, Australia’s national selector, added six players to the preliminary squad for those tours following discussions with those initially named. “During the course of those discussions, it has become clear that recent experiences abroad, including but not limited to extended periods in bio-secure hubs and hard quarantine, have had an impact on the health and wellbeing of some players and their families,” he said.

“CA has maintained that the wellbeing of players, staff and officials is a top priority, and never more so than during the Covid-19 pandemic given the extraordinary challenges it has placed upon international athletes and sporting teams.”

“It is obviously disappointing to lose players with the ability of David and Marcus, but the realities of Covid mean there are practicalities that are difficult for some overseas players to overcome,” the ECB said in a statement to ESPNcricinfo. “Replacement overseas players will be signed by Southern Brave, and we look forward to the Hundred showcasing world-class cricket this summer.”



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