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Sheffield Shield 2021-22 – New South Wales put faith in young batters to go one better

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They had some extreme batting lows last season before falling in the Shield final but won the Marsh Cup

Fixtures
October 27-30: Victoria (Sheffield Shield), Drummoyne Oval
November 5-8: Victoria (Sheffield Shield), MCG
November 12: Victoria (Marsh Cup), MCG

Winter moves
With a further emphasis on the push for youth that was evident at the end of the last season, Baxter Holt, Tanveer Sangha, Oliver Davies and Lachlan Hearne were upgraded from rookie to full contracts. The changing of the guard has seen batters Nick Larkin and Daniel Solway dropped along with spinner Arjun Nair while Nathan McAndrew has moved to South Australia.

Squad
R=Rookie, CA=Australia contract
Sean Abbott, Josh Baraba (R), Harry Conway, Trent Copeland, Pat Cummins (CA), Oliver Davies, Ben Dwarshuis, Jack Edwards, Mickey Edwards, Matthew Gilkes, Ryan Hadley (R), Ryan Hackney, Liam Hatcher, Josh Hazlewood (CA), Lachlan Hearne, Moises Henriques, Baxter Holt, Daniel Hughes, Nathan Lyon (CA), Peter Nevill, Jack Nisbet (R), Kurtis Patterson, Daniel Sams, Jason Sangha, Tanveer Sangha, Steven Smith (CA), Mitchell Starc (CA), Chris Tremain, Hunar Verma (R), David Warner (CA), Adam Zampa (CA)

Last season
The Sheffield Shield, which saw them unable to defend the title when they were comprehensively beaten in the final by Queensland, was a campaign of extremes – particularly when facing Tasmania. In the first stage of the competition they were bowled out for 64 but, astonishingly, went on to secure victory by 145 runs. There was no repeat in the return fixture in Hobart when their batting fell apart for just 32 in the first innings. Another match, against Queensland, finished with them edging across the line by one wicket. The batting was led by Moises Henriques (633 runs at 70.33) and Sean Abbott (570 runs at 63.33) which was an indication they did not get enough from the top order. They made use of having Nathan Lyon for every match and he claimed 42 wickets at 25.97. In the Marsh Cup, captained by Pat Cummins through the group stage, they were unbeaten as they claimed the title with a thumping win over Western Australia.
Player to watch
New captain Kurtis Patterson had a poor 2020-21 season barring a century against South Australia. Having been handed the leadership full time after filling in for Peter Nevill it will be interesting to watch whether the captaincy can help him lift his batting returns. It feels a long time since Patterson made his Test century against Sri Lanka but, at 28, he has time to come again. It will also be worth noting the development of legspinner Tanveer Sangha who has yet to make his first-class debut (or List A) debut but has been named in the first squad of the season.
Australia radar
As so often, New South Wales will provide a large portion of the Australia squad. Outside of the main names (which includes the likely Test attack), Sean Abbott will be pushing hard for inclusion especially after the retirement of James Pattinson. Moises Henriques, who was in the squad for the aborted South Africa tour, could push for a batting slot although won’t be available until next month.

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo



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Recent Match Report – Challengers vs Barishal 1st Match 2021/22

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Benny Howell made a breezy 41 for Chattogram Challengers, who set a paltry 126 target

Fortune Barishal 126 for 6 (Shykat 39, Miraz 4-16) beat Chattogram Challengers 125 for 8 (Howell 41, Joseph 3-32) by four wickets

How the match played out

Ziaur Rahman fixed Fortune Barishal’s ways with a big finish against Chattogram Challengers. His unbeaten 19 off 12 balls helped Barishal win by four wickets with eight balls to spare, despite slipping to 92 for 6 in the 15th over, chasing 126.

Ziaur smashed Mukidul Islam for 18 runs in the 17th over, striking fours through square-leg and extra cover, and a carved six over cover. Dwayne Bravo finished unbeaten on 12 off 10 balls with one boundary, as they took Barishal home.

Ziaur’s big hitting helped Barishal recover from the loss of three wickets in the 15th over. Player of the Match Mehidy Hasan Miraz had Shykat Ali caught at deep midwicket, Irfan Sukkur lbw, and then Salman Hossain run out, with Afif Hossain affecting a direct hit from the covers.
Earlier, Chattogram reached a mediocre 125 for 8, thanks mainly to No. 9 Benny Howell’s 41. Alzarri Joseph took three wickets while Nayeem Hasan took two wickets.

Big hit

Howell struck three fours and three sixes in his 20-ball knock. It was a relief for Chattogram after they were stunted by Shakib Al Hasan‘s four tight overs that went for just nine runs. Joseph took 3-32 on his BPL debut.

Chattogram captain Miraz then stepped up with his maiden four-wicket haul in T20s, finishing with 4 for 16 after taking two of the three wickets to fall in his last over.

Big miss

Barishal, however, could have finished the game much earlier had Shakib batted for longer. Instead, the captain fell for 13 after hitting twoboundaries. Shykat’s dismissal for 39 started the mini collapse in the 15th over.

For Chattogram, Shamim Hossain was the big disappointment. He made 14 off 23 balls, falling to a Joseph short ball, trying to swat the ball.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84



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Peter Siddle joins English county Somerset on all-format deal for 2022 season

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Australia quick to have Renshaw and de Lange as fellow overseas players at the club, to be available until early August

Somerset have signed Peter Siddle as an all-format overseas player for the 2022 season. Siddle, 37, will be available until early August, with Somerset becoming his fourth county team after previous spells with Nottinghamshire, Lancashire and, most recently, Essex.
The veteran Australian quick is Somerset’s third overseas signing for 2022 after Matt Renshaw – his Adelaide Strikers team-mate – and South African Marchant de Lange, with only two permitted in the playing XI in each format. Siddle looks set to play alongside de Lange in the T20 Blast, and is likely to start the season playing with Renshaw in the County Championship after de Lange underwhelmed with the red ball last year, taking 20 wickets at 34.25.

Andy Hurry, the club’s director of cricket, said that the decision to sign an extra seamer was a nod to the possibility of England call-ups for the likes of Craig Overton and Lewis Gregory.

“We have taken some very valuable learnings from the 2021 season, and one of those is the demands that the domestic and international schedule is placing on the players and our squad,” he said. “With a very busy international schedule and anticipated call-ups, we needed to recruit an additional highly skilled bowler who is ready to perform this coming summer.

“This in turn will enable us to ensure that we can create the appropriate time and opportunities to nurture the development of our highly talented group of aspirational bowlers and embed the foundation skills required at the top level.”

For his part, Siddle, who retired from international cricket in 2019, said, “Somerset are held in high regard within the game, and to get a chance to play for the club is something that I am really looking forward to.

“I’ve had some good games against Somerset over the years and now I’m looking forward to contributing to some wins for them. I enjoy playing in England and I would love to be able to play a part in Somerset winning some silverware, especially their first-ever County Championship.”

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98



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BPL 2022 – Nurul Hasan one among three to test positive from Fortune Barishal in lead up to BPL 2022

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BCB’s chief physician says he had subsequently tested negative ahead of tournament opener, so Covid-19 cannot be behind him missing the game

Fortune Barishal wicketkeeper Nurul Hasan, who did not play their opening game in BPL 2022 on Friday, was one of three people to test positive from the franchise in the lead-up to the opener.

However, BCB chief physician Dr Debashis Chowdhury has said Nurul must have been kept out from the game for reasons other than Covid-19, as he had recovered and returned two negative tests, including on the morning of the match.

According to the franchise, the other two members of the Barishal team to test positive in the lead-up to the tournament were batter Munim Shahriar and batting coach Nazmul Abedeen Fahim.

Nurul will be tested again tomorrow. “We tested Nurul Hasan thrice,” Chowdhury said. “He was positive in the first test, and then returned negative results in the next two tests. There’s no problem from our side, so he must be missing the match due to some other reason.”

Barishal are the first team to make public details of the positive Covid-19 cases in their squad; the other franchises and the BCB have thus far remained tight-lipped about number of positive cases.

There are also reports in local media of six positive cases in the Khulna Tigers side, including that of Soumya Sarkar, and 12 positive cases overall among the BCB’s employees over the last four or five days.
The BPL is being held in the middle of a sudden surge in Covid-19 cases in Bangladesh, exacerbated by the Omicron variant. Confirmed cases crossed 10,000 on Thursday for the first time since August 2021, with positive cases growing to 29 times the number it was on January 1, 2022. The positivity rate in the country had reached 26%.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84



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