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Ind vs NZ 2nd Test Mumbai

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India Test captain expects meeting with head coach and selectors to provide clarity on certain aspects of team composition

There will be no hurried calls taken on Ajinkya Rahane‘s future based on external pressure, India’s captain Virat Kohli said after India sealed their 14th consecutive Test series win at home. It was another dominant performance by India, but the lean patch for two of their senior batters, Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara, remains a concern, especially at a time when new batters and coming in and putting performances that make it hard to drop them.
Rahane now averages 24.39 over his last 16 Tests, including one century in the Boxing Day Test nearly a year ago. With scores of 35 and 4 in the last Test, his career average has now dipped below 40. At home he averages 35.73, which has come down to 30.08 over the last five years.
Shreyas Iyer, who played in Kanpur in Kohli’s absence, scored a hundred and a fifty on debut. There was talk Mayank Agarwal might be made to step aside when Kohli came back for Mumbai, but Rahane’s hamstring injury made that decision easy. Agarwal then responded with a century and a fifty of his own on a difficult pitch. Coach Rahul Dravid called the situation a happy headache to have, but also said a big part of his challenge would be to help pick the best XI, especially in away Tests, which could involve “difficult decisions” along the way.

Kohli, known to be ruthless and trigger-happy in the first half of his Test captaincy, has put a premium on the past performances of Rahane and Pujara, and said he would continue to do so.

“I can’t judge Ajnkya’s form,” Kohli said. “Nobody can judge anybody’s form, for that matter. Because only an individual knows what part of his game he has to work on. But, as I have said in the past, it is important to back those players who have made impact performances in difficult situations and important Test matches in the past. We don’t entertain this kind of atmosphere in the team that a player starts worrying about ‘what next’ the moment he is under a little bit of pressure.

“Yes, we can’t expect this kind of balance from those on the outside where those who are singing praises will be asking for a player’s head in two months. We don’t react that way ever nor will we do it in the future because we know how much effort and hard work goes in for any person to get into a positive mental space, and we will support it. Be it Ajinkya or whoever. We will never take decisions based on the outside atmosphere.”

Kohli did, however, say important decisions could be made after discussions with Dravid and the selectors. “Those are discussions we are going to have now with the selectors,” he said. “It is a good headache to have but you always want clarity in these things. And understand that it is always great to know exactly what you want to do before you head into a series like South Africa. Those things are very important to address, and we are going to have discussions straight away when we get to the hotel now.”

One of the things India were understood to be considering was dropping Shubman Gill down to the middle order to better utilise his full potential, but they couldn’t try that as KL Rahul didn’t recover from his injury in time for the New Zealand Tests. Now Iyer has made the middle-order an even more crowded place.

Will they now try the switch in South Africa?

“That’s a discussion that needs to take place: who we think are specialists in certain positions,” Kohli said. “These are not things I can sit here and answer in a press conference. You need discussions on these things, you need to analyse what is best for the team and the individuals as well, and come to a common conclusion.

“More often than not, issues are discussed, and we come to a collective decision, which feels the most balanced. That’s the same process we are going to follow moving forward as well. It is upon lengthy discussions where everyone puts in their ideas.”

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo



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WI vs Eng, 2022 – Jason Roy returns to action with 36-ball hundred ahead of West Indies T20Is

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England signalled his fitness by smashing 115 off 47 in a warm-up match ahead of the T20I series against West Indies

England 231 for 4 (Roy 115, Vince 40*) beat Barbados Cricket Association President’s XI 137 for 11 (Springer 36, Mills 3-25) by 94 runs

Jason Roy marked his return to fitness by hitting a 36-ball hundred – and 115 off 47 overall – in England’s warm-up match against a BCA President’s XI at Kensington Oval.
Roy has not played any cricket since tearing his left calf muscle during England’s final Super 12s game of the T20 World Cup against South Africa in November when he collapsed in pain after running a single and was carried off the pitch.

But his onslaught, which contained nine fours and ten sixes, signalled his fitness ahead of the five-match T20I series that starts on Saturday and will be staged in Barbados in its entirety.



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Recent Match Report – ENG Women vs AUS Women 1st T20I 2021/22

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Meg Lanning said while her side had undergone some enforced changes, she was confident in their make-up

Toss Australia chose to bowl vs England

Australia opted to field in the first T20I against England in Adelaide, the opening match of the 2022 Women’s Ashes.

Grace Harris has been recalled to cover for Mooney’s absence and is listed in the middle order, while legspinner Alana King will make her debut for the home side, who are without the injured Georgia Wareham and Sophie Molineux.
Maia Bouchier will play just her third T20I for England after she impressed during the warm-ups. Part of England’s senior Ashes squad, she top-scored with 27 for England A in the second T20 warm-up, both of which were won by the A side.

Lanning, the Australia captain, said while her side had undergone some enforced changes, she was confident in their make-up.

“It’s a belter of a wicket, it always is at Adelaide Oval,” Lanning told the host broadcaster. “We feel like we’ve got a different look but hopefully we’ve got all bases covered.”

Heather Knight said she would have also opted to bowl, had she won the toss.

Making up the multi-format series, three T20Is in Adelaide will be followed by a Test in Canberra, then three ODIs – the first in Canberra and two in Melbourne. Two points will be awarded for victory in each of the limited-overs matches, with the Test worth four points for the win.

Australia: 1 Alyssa Healy (wk), 2 Meg Lanning (capt), 3 Tahlia McGrath, 4 Rachael Haynes, 5 Ashleigh Gardner, 6 Grace Harris, 7 Nicola Carey, 8 Jess Jonassen, 9 Alana King, 10 Tayla Vlaeminck, 11 Megan Schutt

England: 1 Tammy Beaumont, 2 Danni Wyatt, 3 Heather Knight (capt), 4 Nat Sciver, 5 Amy Jones, 6 Sophia Dunkley, 7 Maia Bouchier, 8 Katherine Brunt, 9 Sophie Ecclestone, 10 Sarah Glenn, 11 Freya Davies

Valkerie Baynes is a general editor at ESPNcricinfo



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Australia top ICC Test rankings after Ashes win, India slip to third place

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South Africa move up a spot to fifth place after beating India; New Zealand retain second spot

Australia have overtaken India and New Zealand to reclaim the No. 1 ICC Test rankings spot after their 4-0 Ashes win at home, pushing India down to third spot. South Africa’s 2-1 win over India at home took them one spot up to fifth place, whereas New Zealand retained their second position.

New Zealand, the inaugural WTC winners, remained in second place after their 1-1 drawn series at home against Bangladesh, which included the hosts’ first ever loss to Bangladesh at home across formats.

Pakistan went down one spot to sixth place, whereas Sri Lanka, West Indies, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan and Ireland retained their positions.



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