Summary
  • Kohli, Axar steady Indian innings after early collapse against South Africa
  • Fans pray for India's elusive world cricket trophy
  • T20 World Cup final a hunger game for Proteas, says Markram
  • India and South Africa to clash in T20 World Cup final on Saturday
  • Rohit Sharma says struggling Virat Kohli 'saving it for the final'
  • Low-profile Rob Walter leads South Africa to promised land of World Cup final
  • South Africa defeat Afghanistan by nine wickets to reach T20 World Cup final
  • India 'always under pressure' to end World Cup drought, says Rohit
  • Polarising Warner bows out with Australia T20 World Cup exit
  • Afghanistan qualify for T20 World Cup semis, eliminate Australia
England opt to bowl against South AFrica

June 21, 2024 07:14 PM

England Friday won the toss and elected to bowl first against South Africa in the second round of the Group 2 matches of the Super Eight stage of the Twenty20 World Cup in St Lucia.

England captain Jos Buttler said it looked like a fresh and good pitch and they fancy another chase.

"Potentially a bit of moisture in the pitch and I'm sure the ball will swing on the breeze."

England are unchanged.

South Africa’s captain Aiden Markram said he would have bowled, too, but isn't too perturbed. "Try to put a good score on the board and squeeze them after that," he said.

South Africa made one change as Ottneill Baartman came back to the playing XI in place for Tabraiz Shamsi. 

SQUADS:

SOUTH AFRICA: 1 Quinton de Kock (wk), 2 Reeza Hendricks, 3 Aiden Markam, 4 Tristan Stubbs, 5 Heinrich Klaasen (wk), 6 David Miller, 7 Marco Jansen, 8 Keshav Maharaj, 9 Kagiso Rabada, 10 Ottneil Baartman, 11 Anrich Nortje

ENGLAND: 1 Phil Salt, 2 Jos Buttler (capt, wk), 3 Moeen Ali, 4 Jonny Bairstow, 5 Harry Brook, 6 Liam Livingstone, 7 Sam Curran, 8 Jofra Archer, 9 Adil Rashid, 10 Mark Wood, 11 Reece Topley

England eager to avoid more South Africa strife at World Cup

June 21, 2024 11:50 AM

England will hope a change of format leads to a change of result when they look to take a giant stride towards the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup against South Africa on Friday following a thumping loss the last time they played the Proteas.

That Mumbai encounter, seven months ago, was perhaps the lowest point of England's woeful defence of their 50-over World Cup title.

Following captain Jos Buttler's extraordinary decision to field first in oppressive heat, England conceded their largest one-day international total of 399 and suffered a colossal 229-run defeat -- their biggest reverse by runs in the history of the format.

That was one of six losses in nine games for England as they failed to reach the knockout stage in India.

But it appears Buttler's men are making a better defence of their T20 World Cup crown, with England overpowering co-hosts the West Indies by eight wickets in St. Lucia on Wednesday.

In chasing down a target of 181 with 15 balls to spare, England emerged with a superior net run-rate to that managed by South Africa in an unexpectedly tense 18-run win over the United States.

Another win for England in St. Lucia against the Proteas would all but guarantee a semi-final place.

Several of the players that featured for both England and South Africa in India will be involved again on Friday.

But England opener Phil Salt, who made a blistering unbeaten 87 against the West Indies, and in-form fast bowler Jofra Archer had no part in that dire defeat in October.

This tournament has marked Archer's return to international duty after a lengthy injury absence, with the Barbados-born quick in the air when England were being walloped at the Wankhede Stadium.

"Honestly, I didn't get to watch that one as I was heading back to the UK. I know it wasn't a great tournament for the boys but we have put it past us," Archer told a pre-match press conference on Thursday.

"We've just won what is probably going to be one of the toughest games of the tournament...It's a tough group and South Africa is the same challenge as any other team, one to six is packed with batters, so it doesn't really change.

"We just need to come up with another plan that works."

Hat-trick hero Cummins helps Australia crush Bangladesh in rain-hit World Cup match

June 21, 2024 11:49 AM

Pat Cummins claimed a hat-trick and David Warner thrashed a quick-fire 53 not out as Australia beat Bangladesh by 28 runs in a weather-disrupted T20 World Cup Super Eight clash in Antigua on Thursday.

Australia, who are bidding to complete a historic treble of World Test Championship, ODI World Cup and T20 World Cup titles, were awarded the victory under the Duckworth-Lewis formula after motoring to 100-2 off 11.2 overs when rain stopped play.

Earlier, Australia had held Bangladesh to 140-8 off their 20 overs at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North Sound.

Australia captain Mitchell Marsh saluted his bowlers for laying the foundations for the win.

"Really exciting bowling performance, the boys played well tonight," Marsh said. "It is a very good playing XI. We've got 15 guys that can take us deep in the World Cup, but there's a long way to go."

Fast bowler Cummins was elated to bag his first international hat-trick.

"Pretty awesome to tick that off," Cummins said. "The boys are welcoming me into the club -- it's a good club to be part of."

Warner led a brisk march towards the victory target despite multiple interruptions to the Australian innings due to rain.

A final rain delay took play past midnight with Warner not out on 53 and Glenn Maxwell unbeaten on 14, Australia 100-2 and needing 41 off 52 balls to win.

With no further play possible, the result was awarded to Australia.

India defeat Afghanistan by 47 runs

June 20, 2024 11:13 PM

Suryakumar Yadav smashed a fine half-century before India's bowlers slammed the brakes on Afghanistan's flamboyant shot-makers to romp to a 47-run win in the T20 World Cup on Thursday.

Suryakumar's 53 was his 19th fifty in the format and helped India to post a challenging 181-8 in their second round Super Eights opener.

Experienced fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah then combined with spin trio Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja to strangle Afghanistan, seen by many as dark horses for the title, who were dismissed for 134 off the last ball.

India elect to bat first against Afghanistan

June 20, 2024 07:16 PM

India Thursday won the toss and elected to bat first against Afghanistan in their first Super Eight match of the Twenty20 World Cup in Bridgetown.

Both India and Afghanistan made one change to their squad from their last group stage matches. India opted for Kuldeep Yadav who replaced fast bowler Muhammad Siraj while Afghanistan replaced Karim Janat with Hazratullah Zazai.

Squads:

Afghanistan: Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk), Ibrahim Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Gulbadin Naib, Azmatullah Omarzai, Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Rashid Khan (capt), Noor Ahmad, Naveen-ul-Haq, Fazalhaq Farooqi

India: Rohit Sharma (capt), Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant (wk), Suryakumar Yadav, Shivam Dube, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Arshdeep Singh

Phil Salt blasts England to T20 World Cup Super Eight win over West Indies

June 20, 2024 10:26 AM

Phil Salt thrashed a brilliant 87 not out off just 47 balls as defending champions England romped to an eight-wicket victory over the West Indies in their T20 World Cup Super Eight clash on Wednesday.

Salt smashed seven fours and five sixes during a swashbuckling innings at the Daren Sammy National Stadium in St. Lucia while Jonny Bairstow hit an unbeaten 48 as England finished on 181-2 off 17.3 overs after earlier restricting the West Indies to 180-4.

Player of the Match Salt effectively sealed victory after cutting loose in the 16th over, hammering 30 runs off West Indies bowler Romario Shepherd with an exhibition of power-hitting that included three sixes and three fours.

The win marked an emphatic return to form for England, who laboured through the first round group phase and flirted with elimination at one stage.

"We're not looking too far ahead, just glad to contribute to the win," Salt said after his match-winning knock.

The England opener praised the contribution of Bairstow, who kept the runs flowing and took the pressure off Salt at the other end.

"There are a lot of different factors that can affect an innings," Salt said. "There was a period where I did not face a lot of balls, but important to stick around and carry on.

"Jonny was fantastic, and took pressure off me by taking calculated risks. I couldn't be happier as a team-mate."

England's other runs came from 25 from skipper Jos Buttler while Moeen Ali added a brisk 13.

 

Coach wary as India face Afghanistan in T20 World Cup

June 20, 2024 10:25 AM

India coach Rahul Dravid warned his side will "not take Afghanistan lightly" in their second-round opener of the T20 World Cup in Barbados on Thursday.

India were unbeaten in the initial pool phase as they advanced into a Super Eights featuring two groups of four.

Afghanistan, however, have also justified their billing as potential semi-finalists.

They had already qualified for the Super Eights before an emphatic 104-run defeat by a rampant West Indies in St Lucia on Monday in a clash of previously unbeaten teams, with Nicholas Pooran smashing 98 for the tournament co-hosts.

But Afghanistan did inflict an 84-run hammering upon New Zealand earlier in the competition.

And with India having needed two Super Overs to see off Afghanistan in a T20 match in Bengaluru in January, Dravid is well aware of the challenge awaiting his players at the Kensington Oval.

"We know Afghanistan is a very dangerous team in this format of the game," former India batsman Dravid, 51 told a pre-match press conference on Wednesday. "They have shown that by their performances in this World Cup.

"They might not have a lot of international experience in the other formats of the game, but a lot of their players do play in a lot of T20 leagues, more than in fact some of our players do.

"So, certainly in this format they are not a team to be taken lightly. They are deservedly in the Super Eights."

Much of Afghanistan's success has been built on superb spin bowling, with Rashid Khan -- who took four wickets for 17 runs against New Zealand in Guyana -- leading the way.

South Africa edge past USA in high-scoring Super 8 thriller

June 19, 2024 11:11 PM

South Africa defeated the United States by 18 runs in their T20 World Cup Super 8 match which was played at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, North Sound, on Wednesday.

The Proteas managed to defend the 195-run target with Kagiso Rabada starring for the winning side with his 3/18 spell in four overs.

After being asked to bat first, South Africa didn’t have the brightest start as Reeza Hendricks continued his bad form and returned to the pavilion after just scoring 11 runs, leaving his side 16-1 in 2.4 overs.

However, after losing one wicket, the Proteas recovered quickly as Quinton de Kock decided to take charge of their innings and played his best knock of the tournament by scoring 74 runs on 40 balls with the help of seven fours and five sixes.

The 110-run partnership between skipper Aiden Markram and De Kock helped the Proteas get in the driving seat.

Following the wicketkeeper batter’s dismissal, South Africa lost wickets in quick succession with David Miller (0), and Markram (46) returning to the pavilion.
Heinrich Klaasen and Tristan Stubbs stayed till the end and helped South Africa conclude their innings at – in the allocated overs.

For the USA, Saurabh Netravalkar bagged two wickets for just 21 runs in four overs. Harmeet Singh also removed two Proteas batters for 24 runs.

Williamson steps down as New Zealand white-ball captain

June 19, 2024 12:44 PM

Kane Williamson has stepped down as captain of New Zealand's white-ball teams, the Black Caps said Wednesday, days after they crashed out in the group stage of the T20 World Cup.

Williamson has turned down a central contract for the 2024/25 season, relinquishing the captaincy of the Twenty20 and one-day teams. He will still however play international cricket.

It leaves the 33-year-old star batsman able to accept offers to play in lucrative overseas competitions.

"Pursuing an overseas opportunity during the New Zealand summer means I'm unable to accept a central contract offer," he said in a statement.

He can still play for New Zealand, with the Black Caps scheduled to play Test matches against Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, India and England later this year.

Williamson said his decision to turn down a central contract and give up the limited-overs captaincy should not be interpreted as a sign he was losing interest in international cricket.

"Playing for New Zealand is something I treasure and my desire to give back to the team remains undiminished," he said.

Williamson had skippered New Zealand in all three formats until he gave up the Test captaincy to fast bowler Tim Southee in late 2022.

Since making his debut in 2010, Williamson has played 100 tests, 165 one-day internationals and 93 T20 games for New Zealand.

 

Bangladesh pacer Tanzim Saqib fined for 'contact' with Nepal captain

June 19, 2024 12:43 PM

Bangladesh's Tanzim Hasan Saqib has been fined 15 percent of his match fee after confronting Nepal captain Rohit Paudel during a World Cup game, the cricket council said Wednesday.

The incident occurred during their Group D match at the weekend in St. Vincent, when Bangladesh qualified for the Super Eight stage of the T20 World Cup with a 21-run victory.

Tanzim, after bowling a delivery at the end of the third over of Nepal's innings, walked towards Paudel in an aggressive manner and was deemed to have made "inappropriate physical contact", the International Cricket Council (ICC) said.

Fast bowler Tanzim admitted the offence and accepted the sanction.

Paudel had played down the incident.

"There's nothing between us, just he came and he told me to hit, and I said, 'go and bowl'," he said. "Nothing else."

Tanzim picked up 4-7 in a fierce opening spell to help Bangladesh claim victory.

 

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