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Men’s T20 World Cup 2021

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The quick bowler’s first delivery set the tone against South Africa in a superb powerplay display

After all the talk about which of Australia’s Test match quicks would miss out in their T20 World Cup opener against South Africa, the trio of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins played together in the format for the first time.
And for Hazlewood, his first spell – which read 2-1-1-2 inside the powerplay – was a performance that would not look out of place on the opening day against England at the Gabba in six weeks.

Of the three quicks, Hazlewood is the one who has made the late surge into Australia’s T20 plans after finally being able to get a run of games in West Indies and Bangladesh before a successful stint with Chennai Super Kings.

After discussions about how he needed to adapt to the T20 format, it was during that spell with Super Kings, where he worked with Stephen Fleming and Eric Simons, that Hazlewood was encouraged to utilise the strengths that make him such a fine bowler in Tests and ODIs.

ESPNcricinfo’s data shows that during the IPL, his deliveries logged as length or short-of-a-good-length had a combined economy rate of 7.40. When he went full or short that ballooned out to 12.85.

It could not have gone much better in Abu Dhabi. First delivery he found the edge of Rassie van der Dussen with a short-of-a-length delivery and then, having seen Quinton de Kock play on via his thigh pad, he kept Heinrich Klassen scoreless for five balls.

“I’ve probably gone the opposite way now,” he said of his T20 thinking. “Chatting about how batters are probably expecting that you to change if you are hit for four or six. Think the wickets are a little different here as well, but it’s about keep doing the same thing and make them hit fours and sixes off your good deliveries – just above the stumps, a hard length. That seemed to work for the last few weeks in the IPL and again [against South Africa]. You have to weight it up and move forward with what works best.

“Every game is different and that’s what I’ve learned over the last few weeks. It’s about getting everything in order at training and preparing yourself for anything, then summing it up as a bowling group once you are out there.”

There was a glimpse of the alternative way things can go when Hazlewood bowled his last over, the 17th of the innings, which began with Aiden Markram swatting him over deep midwicket for six in what was the joint-most expensive over of the innings costing 12. Australia will also come up against batting line-ups with more confidence during the group stage.

“You have to weigh up where the boundaries are bigger, who you are bowling at, so it’s about thinking on your feet and preparing for every situation,” Hazlewood said of still having the need to adjust. “There’s certainly a place for line and length then there’s times where it doesn’t work.”

Having played their first game in the day time, Australia’s next two outings are evening matches against Sri Lanka and England in Dubai. Other teams have focused on the dew factor – England went as far as training with wet balls while Virat Kohli said it had a bit of an impact against Pakistan – but Hazlewood did not see it as being decisive.

“The conditions don’t change a lot there. They probably change more at Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. The Dubai wicket maintains it pretty well. There might be a slight advantage in batting second.”

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo



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Recent Match Report – Challengers vs Dhaka 4th Match 2021/22

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Tamim Iqbal scored 52 but no other team-mate could build on that start

Chattogram Challengers 161 for 8 (Jacks 41, Rubel 3-26) beat Minister Group Dhaka 131 (Tamim 52, Shoriful 4-34, Nasum 3-9) by 30 runs

How the match played out

Chattogram Challengers brought down the very experienced Minister Group Dhaka by 30 runs to round off a thrilling second day in the BPL. Nasum Ahmed‘s superb figures of 3 for 9 scripted Dhaka’s doom, including Andre Russell’s wicket, before he could get going in the chase of 162.
Left-arm quick Shoriful Islam mopped up the lower order with career-best T20 figures of 4 for 34, as Dhaka were bowled out for 131 in 19.5 overs. Chattogram had put on a competitive 161 for 8 in 20 overs, with the English pair of Will Jacks and Benny Howell providing big hits at either ends of the innings.
Dhaka were unable to take advantage of a good start provided by Tamim Iqbal‘s 42nd and second straight T20 half-century. Instead, Shoriful and Nasum engineered a collapse by sharing seven wickets in their eight overs.

Big hit

Two big overs helped Chattogram knock over Dhaka. Shoriful took out Tamim, for 52, and Jahurul Islam in the space of three balls in the 12th over. Nasum then removed Mohammad Naim and Dhaka captain Mahmudullah in the 14th over, and Dhaka had slipped from 73 for 1 to 83 for 5 in the space of three overs.

Nasum then took out Russell in his last over. A big hit was palpable but when Russell mistimed a hoick, and Shamim Hossain stayed calm under the skier for his third catch.

Chattogram got an early boost when Jacks struck 41 off 24 balls, with six fours and two sixes over midwicket and square leg, all within the first 7.4 overs. Howell added three sixes of his own, one over long-on and two high over square leg, towards the end of the innings, in his 19-ball 37. Rubel Hossain, meanwhile, made up for his poor figures in the first match, this time taking 3 for 26.

Big miss

After being bizarrely run out on the tournament’s opening day, Russell had another day to forget. He conceded 17 runs in his only over, before getting out for 12. He also dropped two catches. The only saving grace for Russell was the two good catches he held on to.

Chattogram captain Mehidy Hasan Miraz also went wicketless after taking a four-wicket haul in their game on Friday, but he would be more than happy to pick up the hard-fought win.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84



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BCCI rejigs schedule of India vs West Indies ODIs and T20Is to avoid clash with IPL auction

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The board also confirmed the ODIs will be played in Ahmedabad, followed by the T20Is in Kolkata

The BCCI has confirmed that the venues for the limited-overs series at home against West Indies will be Ahmedabad and Kolkata, and has also advanced the third ODI from February 12 to 11, to avoid a clash with the IPL auction slated for February 12-13. As reported by ESPNcricinfo on January 20, the board had planned to keep the venues to two instead of the original six, to limit any chance of the Covid-19 pandemic affecting the series.

The BCCI said the move was “to mitigate biosecurity risks by cutting down on travel and movement of the teams, match officials, broadcasters, and other stakeholders.”

The tour will begin with three ODIs, which will all take place in Ahmedabad, and the teams will then move to Kolkata for three T20Is. The ODIs are scheduled on February 6, 9 and 11. The opening T20I will now take place on February 16 instead of 15, and the remaining two T20Is will go ahead on February 18 and 20, as originally planned.

As reported by ESPNcricinfo earlier, the BCCI had mooted the change of dates, and was waiting to make an official decision after discussions with Cricket West Indies.

Last September, while unveiling India’s home calendar for 2021-22, the BCCI had named Ahmedabad, Jaipur and Kolkata as the venues for the ODIs, with the original dates being February 6, 9 and 12. The T20Is were to be played in Cuttack, Visakhapatnam and Thiruvananthapuram, on February 15, 18 and 20.

Apart from avoiding a clash with the IPL auctions, the change in schedule is a precautionary step by the BCCI, taken in response to the growing number of positive cases in India, which is currently experiencing a third wave of the pandemic, with the Omicron variant dominant across the country. Though the impact of this wave has been less severe than the preceding Delta wave, the high degree of transmissiblity of Omicron has led to stringent curbs on movement and public activities, particularly in big cities.



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Recent Match Report – Sunrisers vs Victorians 3rd Match 2021/22

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Nahidul picked up two wickets before scoring 16, as Victorians were made to work hard by Sunrisers

Comilla Victorians 97 for 8 (Janat 18, Nazmul 3-17, Mosaddek 2-10) beat Sylhet Sunrisers 96 (Ingram 20, Mustafizur 2-15, Shohidul 2-15) by two wickets

Comilla Victorians crawled to a two-wicket win in a low-scoring game against Sylhet Sunrisers in Mirpur. The match ended when Kesrick Williams bowled two wides, as Victorians needed two runs off nine balls with two wickets in hand. Victorians’ Nahidul Islam was adjudged Player of the Match after he followed his two wickets with 16 runs.
Sunrisers’ left-arm spinner Nazmul Islam took three wickets, while offspinners Sohag Gazi and captain Mosaddek Hossain got two each. However, all their effort went in vain. Despite Victorians slipping to 88 for 8 in the 17th over, Mahidul Islam and Tanvir Islam, unbeaten on 9 and 3 respectively, got the job done.
Big hit
Sohag Gazi, out of the national side’s reckoning for five years, removed Victorians’ openers Faf du Plessis and Cameron Delport, before Mosaddek had Mominul Haque and Imrul Kayes caught on the off side. Karim Janat and Nahidul then added 27 runs for the sixth wicket, but both fell to Nazmul.
Janat holed out at deep cover, while Nahidul gave Colin Ingram a simple catch at point. When Ravi Bopara took a tumbling catch at long-on to dismiss Shohidul Islam, Victorians were in trouble. With six required off the last two overs, Williams bowled a poor 19th over to hand victory to Victorians.

Earlier, Sunrisers had batted similarly when they lost their top order early. Ingram fell to a miscued pull off seamer Shohidul for 20, giving Victorians control with the ball. Offspinner Nahidul bowled his four overs in one go, taking 2 for 20, as he made an impressive return to Victorians’ colours after six years.

Left-arm spinner Tanvir followed it up with more control, taking 1 for 10 from his four overs. It encouraged Victorians captain Kayes to bring on the part-timer Mominul who removed Bopara. Mustafizur Rahman and Shohidul then completed the formalities, bowling Sunrisers out for 96 in 19.1 overs.

Big miss
Several of Bangladesh’s batting stars had a poor outing in this game. Sunrisers’ Anamul Haque, Mohammad Mithun and captain Mosaddek got out for single digits. Nahidul removed both Anamul, who lost his balance while trying to cut the ball, and Mithun, who was caught at point.
Mosaddek gave Ariful Haque an easy catch at slip.

Kayes swung and missed a couple of balls before hitting one to cover. Mominul holed out to short third man. du Plessis, billed as the BPL’s
biggest star this season, also fell for a single-digit score when Gazi had him caught-and-bowled for 2.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84



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