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India Women in England 2021

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‘Hopefully if my selection demonstrates anything it’s that everyone in the regions now has a chance’

Emily Arlott was shocked into silence when she learned of her call-up to the England squad ahead of Wednesday’s Test against India.

Arlott, the 23-year-old Worcestershire seamer, had only the day before completed a quadruple-wicket maiden in a five-wicket haul for Central Sparks in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy at Hove, where they beat defending champions Southern Vipers.

After long drive home and unpacking her kit after at the end of “an emotional weekend” then eating dinner, she discovered she’d missed a phone call from Jonathan Finch, ECB Director of Women’s Cricket.

“I thought it was a bit weird on a random Sunday evening so I called him back straight away, and he told me the news,” Arlott said. “I don’t think I responded for a good two minutes.

“He was sat on the other end of the line: ‘I hope the silence is a good thing’. I’m probably as shocked as anyone that I got the call. I didn’t even think my name was in contention to be considered so to get the call just rounded off that weekend really.”



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Recent Match Report – Sussex vs Lancashire Group 2 2021

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Two-wicket win sealed after late onslaught, despite heroic efforts from young visitors

Lancashire 274 for 8 (Lamb 86*, Lenham 4-59) beat Sussex 270 for 9 (Head 56, Carter 55; Hurt 3-55)

On evenings like this, which are rich beyond easy measure, one wonders why the incomparable game seems periodically determined to tear itself to tatters. On evenings like this, when Lancashire have contrived to win a match they’d all but lost, one wonders why people patronise or disrespect the Royal London Cup. Nobody was guilty of such insult at Sedbergh today. On evenings like this, when pride is fighting a battle with disappointment in the hearts of the Sussex players, one wonders why it is thought foolish to give young cricketers their chances to succeed and, yes, fail.

But then evenings like this do not come around too often. And, of course, there is nowhere in the world like Sedbergh…

For sitting on the boundary of this sacred space it is difficult to think ill of our world. And for those lucky enough to play here no task is beyond them. Just ask Danny Lamb

But first, consider, if you will, these two enormous bowls. The first is built almost entirely of concrete and glass and is situated in the Edgbaston area of Birmingham. It is an intimidating place, especially during Ashes Tests or short-format games; a stadium conducive to fervour; a harsh arena, especially since its redevelopment just over a decade ago. Our second bowl has taken rather longer to emerge. Sedbergh’s Cricket Field is ringed by the Howgill Fells, the seeds of whose formation can be dated back to the Paleoproterozoic era, somewhere between 160 and 250 million years ago. This can also be a harsh land on winter mornings when snow-covered Crook defies ascent but not on white-wisped afternoons such as this when Baugh Fell wore all the browns and purples a bounteous God might devise and Winder stood proud and green against a blue dome.

So much, so worlds apart. Yet on this fourth Friday in July both these grounds staged fine cricket matches and does not that simple truth suggest that it is time we put aside damaging Brexitesque enmities and instead marvelled at a game that could incorporate the raucous brevity at Edgbaston and the slower but unimaginably rewarding rhythms at Sedbergh?

Certainly the large crowd that filled this endlessly enriching ground seemed more than content as they saw this match unfold. And by the conclusion of what became a wonderful struggle mere content had become rhapsody, particularly for home supporters, as Lancashire recovered from 115 for 7 to beat Sussex by two wickets, thanks substantially to Lamb, whose 69-ball 84 not out brought deep-throated roars from the spectators ringing this starkly gorgeous arena.

A Lancashire win had hardly seemed possible, let alone likely, when Archie Lenham marked his 17th birthday by dismissing George Lavelle and Rob Jones in the space of four balls in the 27th over. That left the home side needing 156 to win and all they had on their side was time. So Lamb and Tom Bailey pushed the singles, drove the occasional four, saw off the leg-spinners, Lenham and Will Beer, and refused to put the hammer down until 102 runs were needed from the final ten overs. They were determined, in other words, to take it deep.
This thoughtful approach was not surprising. Lamb proved his batting ability when he made a Championship century at Canterbury in April and Bailey has five first-class half-centuries to his credit. What was more remarkable was the pair’s smooth transition to outright attack with both batters hitting a couple of sixes before Bailey was stumped off the impressive Lenham for 45 to end the 112-run partnership, Lancashire’s highest for the eighth wicket in List A cricket.

Liam Hurt joined Lamb and proved a reliable compadre as the game reached its climax. Sussex brought back the seamers who, nearly three hours earlier, had reduced Lancashire to 19 for 3. But the game was nearly gone. Lamb lifted both Henry Crocombe and Joe Sarro for sixes before Hurt drove the boundary that completed the victory with six balls to spare. Cheers echoed round the fells and they followed a sweat-covered Lamb into the Knowles Pavilion. Only a brave man would tell any of those voicing their delight that this was a development competition, that its results don’t matter or that they were playing second fiddle to anything at all.



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Recent Match Report – Warwickshire vs Glamorgan 2021

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Warwickshire’s 221 proves insufficient in tight contest at Sophia Gardens

Glamorgan 225 for 8 (Carlson 60, Root 50, Bethell 4-39) beat Warwickshire 221 (Burgess 73, Benjamin 50) by two wickets

Lukas Carey was the hero at Sophia Gardens for the second time in three days as he once again hit the winning runs to snatch victory for his side.

On Tuesday it was his 29 not out that steered the Wales Minor Counties team to victory over Glamorgan in a friendly and two days later he hit successive boundaries to secure a two wicket win for the Welsh county over Warwickshire in the first round of the Royal London Cup with two balls to spare.

The visitors were defending a total of 26 runs in the final five overs and some brilliant death bowling by Ryan Sidebottom and Ethan Brookes looked as though it might pull off an unlikely win as they conjured up 11 dot balls in that vital period.

A lusty six hit by Roman Walker off Brookes in the penultimate over eased the pressure on the home side, but the game was still in the balance as Sidebottom roared in against Carey with five runs still needed from the last over.

Sidebottom had only conceded a single bye in his previous over against the 24-year-old Carey and started with two dot balls to heighten the tension. Then Carey just reached the mid off boundary with a far from convincing drive and then walloped the next ball past the bowler to complete a two wicket triumph to give Glamorgan the perfect start to their Group B campaign.

Jacob Bethel’s white ball debut for Warwickshire saw him capture four wickets to keep his side in the hunt. The Barbados-born former Rugby School pupil was caught at the wicket for a mere two runs in Warwickshire’s total of 221, but hit back after coming on as first change to capture 4 for 39 off a terrific spell of 10 overs.

Having dismissed opener Nick Selman he then removed home danger man Kiran Carlson for 60 before setting up a hat-trick attempt after removing Callum Taylor and Tom Cullen in successive. He ended with 4 for 36 from his full 10 overs..

Warwickshire won the toss and opted to go in first on the same wicket on which Glamorgan had been beaten in a one-day warm-up game against the Wales team earlier in the week.

Michael Hogan opened with a maiden, but saw Billy Root drop the dangerous Ed Pollock at first slip in his second over. Pollock reacted positively to his second chance and hammered Carey for a six and two fours in the next over before being caught at point by Joe Cooke for 15.

That made it 21 for 1 and by the end of the 10-over Powerplay the visitors had reached a modest 47 runs and had also lost Matt Lamb. South African youngster Chris Benjamin then took up the cudgel and reached his half-century off 55 balls.

Two balls later he was on his way to the pavilion have gifted a catch to Nick Sleman a catch at deep mid on off Taylor. The 100 came up with a wide off Carey in the 21st over, but with the very next ball he dismissed Bethell with an equally wide delivery that the left hander tickled into the gloves of the diving Tom Cullen.

When Cooke clean bowled Ethan Brookes for two to make it 109 for 5, Glamorgan’s stand-in skipper Kiran Carson must have been licking his lips. But opposing captain Mike Burgess dug in and found a useful ally in the 17-year-old debutant Ashish Chakrapani.

Burgess reached his half-century in 73 balls with successive fours off Hogan and by the time Chakrapnai holed out at deep mid wicket for 18 he had helped put on 60 runs. Burgess then went for a career-best 73 in white ball cricket as his side reached 221 before they were bowled out.

Glamorgan’s new Kiwi international signing, Hamish Rutherford, lasted only eight balls on his debut and the home side lost two more of their top order batsmen with the score on 41 to tumble to 41 for 3.

That brought Billy Root to the crease to partner Carlson and between them they got to grips with the Warwickshire attack. Carlson’s 50 came up in the 31st over off 60 balls, and included five boundaries, and the century partnership arrived after the pair had been together for 21 overs in the 33rd.

Offspinner Bethell was then switched to the River Taff end and on his return to the attack he captured the wicket of Carlson for 60 to open the game back up. Glamorgan still needed 80 runs to win in 16 overs, but their talisman had gone.

Bethell took two more wickets, Root reached his 50, but was then got caught and Joe Cooke made an important 22. That left Roman Walker and Carey to reach the finish line with a stand of 27.



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No new Covid cases inside West Indies-Australia bubble, talks over series taking place

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It remains uncertain whether the rest of the one-day series will resume

No further positive Covid-19 tests have been reported inside the bubble of the West Indies-Australia series with talks now underway as to whether the ODIs will be able to resume.

The second ODI was suspended moments before play was due to begin on Thursday with the toss having already taken place when a positive test came through from a non-playing member of the West Indies squad.

The two squads as well as match officials and TV crew were immediately returned to the hotel and put into room isolation where they were retested with all 152 coming back negative on Friday morning.

All those involved remained in isolation on Friday while negotiations took place between Cricket West Indies and Cricket Australia. Investigations are continuing into the source of yesterday’s positive case.

“Following confirmation from the Ministry of Health officials in Barbados that all the results are negative, CWI will now hold meetings with Cricket Australia (CA), the Barbados Cricket Association, and Government of Barbados officials to agree when the resumption of the CG Insurance ODI Series at Kensington Oval can begin,” a CWI statement said.

“CWI has been working closely with Local Ministries of Health to operate strict bio-secure bubbles successfully during the past year, and will continue to prioritise the health, safety and wellbeing for all concerned.”

The third ODI was originally scheduled to take place on Saturday while the status of the second match, and how World Cup Super League points will be decided, remains to be confirmed.

There is very little room in West Indies’ schedule to push back fixtures with their T20I series against Pakistan due to start in Barbados on Tuesday. Australia were already due to stay on the island for three days after the end of the one-day series before taking a charter fight to Dhaka ahead of the five-match T20I series against Bangladesh which was confirmed earlier this week.



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