All posts by News Desk

Think we’ve made the right decision to not play a tour match: Steve Smith

Australia batter Steve Smith has reckoned that it is the right decision to not play a tour match before the upcoming Border Gavaskar Trophy against hosts India citing the “irrelevant” pitches that didn’t spin in those games when they were in the country on previous occasion.

Notably, Australia had adopted a no tour match policy since their tour of Pakistan last year.

“We’ll wait and see when we hit the ground. I think we’ve made the right decision to not play a tour match. Like I said, last time they dished up a green top for us and we barely faced any spin, so it’s kind of irrelevant.”

“We’re better off having our own nets and getting spinners in and bowling as much as they can,” Smith was quoted as saying by The Daily Telegraph before leaving from Sydney airport with the Australian team on Tuesday.

“We normally have two tour games over in England. This time we don’t have a tour game in India. The last time we went I’m pretty sure we got served up a green top (to practise on) and it was sort of irrelevant.”

“Hopefully, we get really good training facilities where the ball is likely to do what it’s likely to do out in the middle, and we can get our practice in,” added Smith.

During their last tour of India, Australia had lost 2-1 despite winning the first Test in Pune however, Smith feels that the Pat Cummins-led side is ready for the Indian challenge.

“It’s certainly huge. I don’t know if it’s (winning in India) the final frontier. I’ve never won there, I’ve been there twice (for Tests), it’s always difficult playing there.”

“India and England – our two opponents over the next six months – are probably our biggest as an Australian Test cricketer. We’ve got some challenges in front of us, but the guys are ready for it.”

MI Cape Town replace injured Livingstone with Tim David

MI Cape Town have signed Australian cricketer Tim David for the remainder of the 2023 season of the SA20, South Africa’s franchise-basked domestic T20 tournament, replacing England allrounder Liam Livingstone in the squad.

“It is Tim Time. Welcome to the #MICapeTown family @timdavid8,” MI Cape Town said in a tweet on Monday.

Tim, 26, is a power-hitter and has been a consistent performer across various T20 leagues, MI Cape Town informed in a release.

David is a substitute signing for the injured Livingstone.

“I am so excited to be here with MI Cape Town and join up with the MI family. Look forward to meeting all my new teammates, some familiar faces with the coaches and current teammates from Mumbai Indians. Can’t wait to start and looking forward,” Tim David was quoted by the team on Monday.

David, who has represented Singapore in 14 T20Is, scoring 558 runs at an average of 46.5 before switching alliances to Australia and was named in their squad for the 2022 T20 World Cup. He made his T20I debut for Australia against India on September 20, 2022.

David is very experienced in T20 cricket and has played in Big Bash League, Pakistan Super League, T20 Blast and The Hundred in England. In August 2021, David was picked by Royal Challengers Bangalore and in February 2022 was selected by Mumbai Indians in IPL 2022 auction.

Tendulkar, BCCI office-bearers to felicitate World Cup-winning U19 women’s team

Former India cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) office-bearers will felicitate the Indian U19 women’s cricket team for winning the inaugural ICC U19 Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa in Ahmedabad on Wednesday (February 1).

Notably, Shafali Verma & Co produced a superb bowling performance to bundle out England for a paltry 68.

Chasing the low total on a slow pitch, India lost Shafali and Shweta Sehrawat in the first four overs however, Soumya Tiwari (24 not out) and Gongadi Trisha (24) shared a 46-run stand for the third wicket to guide their side home in 14 overs and give India their first-ever World Cup title in women’s cricket.

The U19 women’s team will be felicitated in the Narendra Modi Stadium at 6:30 PM IST, just before the start of the third and final T20I match against New Zealand.

“It is with great delight I share that Bharat Ratna Shri @sachin_rt and @BCCI Office Bearers will felicitate the victorious India U19 team on Feb 1st in Narendra Modi Stadium at 6:30 PM IST,” BCCI secretary Jay Shah wrote in a tweet on Monday.

“The young cricketers have made India proud and we will honour their achievements,” Jay Shah said.

Earlier on Sunday, Shah had announced a cash prize of Ra 5 crore for the victorious team and support staff after they beat England by seven wickets.

“Kudos to the India U19 team for winning the #U19T20WorldCup. This is a phenomenal achievement as our young cricketers have made the country proud. That the young players weren’t overawed by the big occasion speaks volumes about their steely characters and temperament.”

Shah had also invited the India U19 women’s team to the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad to be a part of the celebrations when the third T20I between India and New Zealand is played on Wednesday.

“I invite @TheShafaliVerma and her victorious team to join us at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad and witness the third T20I on 1st February. This humongous achievement surely calls for a celebration. @BCCI @BCCIWomen,” he had said on Sunday.

Just want to go out there & enjoy our cricket at T20 WC: Harmanpreet

Ahead of the upcoming Women’s T20 World Cup starting from February 10 in South Africa, India captain Harmanpreet Kaur has said that her side just wants to go out on the field and enjoy their cricket beside adding that playing the ongoing tri-series in East London is giving them time to adjust their game as per the conditions.

“I think, for the past few years we have been travelling, so there won’t be much difference to us. But recently, we had a camp in Bangalore where the ball was good, we trained specially in a few areas we wanted to work. Before that we have tri-series, in the tri-series we will have enough time to get settled in those conditions.”

“Now we aren’t thinking of too many things, how it’s going to work or not going to work. We only think about whether we can do it or not and which areas we feel that we can improve on even 1% every day. So, I think other than just thinking about whether it’s going to work or not going to work, we just want to go there and enjoy our cricket,” she said on the ‘Believe in Blue’ show on Star Sports.

Notably, it will be the third time when Harmanpreet will be leading India in the T20 World Cup after the 2018 and 2020 editions in which the side finished as semi-finalists and runners-up respectively.

On the other hand, batter Jemimah Rodrigues revealed why she and her team-mates look up massively to Harmanpreet, who overcame a lean patch ahead of the ODI World Cup 2022 and hasn’t looked back since then.

“I think it started with a knock from Harmanpreet because before that, Harry di was going through a bad patch and I can’t imagine the kind of emotions or what she was feeling at that time. Because there was a lot of pressure, lot of criticism, I think even maybe the selectors and all were also kind of asking why ‘she’s not performing’ and all that.”

“So, as a player, all of us know it’s not the easiest place to be when you’re down and out. But from there to come out of that and to come out with a bang and the way she did, when the team required it the most, I think that stood out for me for Harry di.”

“You know more than the knock, the way she got back up and showed who she is, I think that’s one thing that was very inspiring for me. And even till now you know we can just take so much motivation from that because we know it’s not the end and there’s always a better comeback.”

Notably, the Women in Blue will begin their Group B campaign in the showpiece event against arch-rivals Pakistan on February 12 at Newlands Cricket Ground in Cape Town.

Mumbai City FC sign defender Hardik Bhatt on loan from Rajasthan Utd

Mumbai City FC (MCFC) on Monday announced the signing of defender Hardik Bhatt on loan from I-League club Rajasthan United until the end of the 2022-23 season.

The 25-year-old defender began his professional career with ARA FC, an I-League second-division club, before signing on for FC Bengaluru United in 2019. Showcasing his prowess as a full-back, Hardik made eight appearances, scoring twice, for the Bengaluru-based side.

Following a stint with Hyderya Kashmir FC, Hardik moved to I-League side Rajasthan United in December 2021. He established himself in the ranks of the Desert Warriors, becoming a part of Rajasthan United’s exploits in their debut I-League season in 2021-22, and became a regular fixture in their side in the ongoing league campaign.

“It’s a proud moment for me to join Mumbai City, a club from a city that I call home. It is no secret that Mumbai City are an ambitious club. I am a Mumbaikar and I know what this club means to the city of Mumbai. I am certain that I will be giving my 100% for the badge and want to help the club in my time here to achieve success. I want to thank Rajasthan United for all the support they have extended and I cannot wait to get started with this new and exciting chapter of my career,” Hardik said.

Hardik put in impressive performances at the 2022 Durand Cup as well, including featuring in the Group B fixture against the Islanders, as he helped Rajasthan United qualify for the knockout stages.

Des Buckingham, head coach, Mumbai City FC said: “It’s a pleasure to have Hardik join our talented group. We are aware of his capabilities having seen him up and close at the Durand Cup last year, but we’ve also seen his strong performances in the I-League. Hardik will bring in his qualities in our defence, particularly as a full-back, and we are confident that he can contribute greatly in what is a crucial part of the season for us in the ISL and beyond.”

Graham Reid resigns as chief coach of Indian men’s hockey team

Just after a day of the conclusion of the FIH Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup 2023 in which the Indian team finished at a disappointing joint-9th place, Graham Reid has stepped down as chief coach of India men’s hockey team.

Reid, the former Australia coach, submitted his resignation to Hockey India (HI) President Dilip Tirkey in Bhubaneswar.

Hosts India, who were touted as a medal contender after ending a four-decade drought at the Olympics by winning a bronze medal in Tokyo Games in 2021, had a tournament to forget after finishing at a disappointing ninth place along with Argentina after losing to New Zealand in the Crossover match.

Meanwhile, the men’s team’s analytical coach Greg Clark and scientific advisor Mitchell David Pemberton also put in their resignation on Monday morning and the trio will now be serving their notice period over the next month.

Talking about his stint with the Indian side since 2019, Reid said: “It is now time for me to step aside and hand over the reins to the next management. It has been an honour and privilege to work with the team and Hockey India and I have enjoyed every moment of this epic journey. I wish the team all the very best.”

Having accepted Reid’s resignation along with that of Greg Clark and Mitchell Pemberton, Hockey India President Dr Dilip Tirkey said: “India will always have gratitude towards Graham Reid and his team of support staff who have brought good results to the country, particularly the Olympic Games. As all journeys move to different phases, it is now time for us to move on towards a new approach for our team.”

Notably, Reid had taken over as chief coach of the Indian men’s team in April 2019 and his initial tenure was till August 2020 however the contract period was extended after the Tokyo Olympics were postponed for a year.

As per a statement, HI will now initiate the process for the appointment of a new coach as they have a break before India’s next round of FIH Pro League matches.

Murali Vijay announces retirement from all forms of international cricket

India cricketer Murali Vijay has announced his retirement from international cricket on Monday.

He had last represented India in the 2018 Perth Test against hosts Australia while his last first-class appearance for his state team Tamil Nadu came in the Ranji Trophy in December 2019.

“Today, with immense gratitude & humility, I announce my retirement from all forms of International cricket. My journey from 2002-2018 has been the most wonderful years of my life for it was an honour representing India at the highest level of sport,” he said in an official statement through his social media accounts.

“I am grateful for the opportunities given to me by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA), Chennai Super Kings and Chemplast Sanmar. To all my team-mates, coaches, mentors and support staff: It has been an absolute privilege to have played with you all, and, I thank you all for helping turn my dream into reality,” he added.

“To cricket fans that have supported me through the ups & downs of international sport, I will forever cherish the moments I spent with you all and your support has always be a source of motivation for me.”

“Lastly, I would like to thank my family & friends for their unconditional love and support throughout my career. They have been my backbone and without them, I would not have been able to achieve what I have today,” he further said.

“I am excited to announce that I will be exploring new opportunities in the world of cricket & the business side of it, where I will also continue to participate in the sport that I love and challenge myself in new and different environments.”

“I believe that this is the next step in my journey as a cricketer and I look forward to this new chapter in my life. I wish all my former teammates and the Indian cricket team all the best for their future endeavours. Thank you for all the memories, Love to All More to Life,” he concluded.

Vijay played 61 Tests for India, scoring 3982 runs averaging 38.29, including 12 centuries and 15 fifties, and was also leading run-scorer in the 2014 Test tour of England.

The right-hand opener also featured in 17 ODIs and nine T20Is for India, scoring only 339 and 169 runs respectively.

Cricket fraternity hail India on becoming U19 Women’s T20 World Cup champs

Veteran Indian cricketers have lavished praise on the Indian women’s team as they became the U19 T20 World Cup champions.

Notably, Shafali Verma & Co produced a superb bowling performance to bundle out England for a paltry 68.

Chasing the low total on a slow pitch, India lost Shafali and Shweta Sehrawat in the first four overs however, Soumya Tiwari (24 not out) and Gongadi Trisha (24) shared a 46-run stand for the third wicket to guide their side home in 14 overs and give India their first-ever World Cup title in women’s cricket.

Taking to Twitter, Jhulan Goswami said: “Historic win. Proud of our U19 team. A great performance by Titas. Congratulations to all the players. This victory will inspire millions,” tweeted Jhulan.

“CHAMPIONS! Congratulations #TeamIndia, this is a monumental achievement! This fantastic victory shows how dominating you have been throughout the tournament. The triumph is even more special considering this is the first-ever Women’s #U19T20WorldCup. Cherish every moment!” for India skipper Mithali Raj tweeted.

Current Indian women’s captain Harmanpreet Kaur and batter Smriti Mandhana also showered praise on their junior counterparts.

“You’ve been a motivation for us. You girls have bought laurels to the nation. We are extremely proud of each and everyone whose been a part of the world contest,” said Harmanpreet.

Mandhana said: “Champions of the world. Proud. Absolutely proud of the bunch. Champions in the inaugural edition makes it even more special. This is just the beginning. Go team.”

Meanwhile, legendary Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar too extended his wishes and said: “Indian women’s cricket is on the up! First the announcement of the #WPL & now the #U19T20WorldCup win. Congratulations to the entire women’s team on winning the inaugural U19 World Cup. This win will inspire a whole generation to take up sports.”

India skipper Rohit Sharma tweeted: “Big congratulations to the U-19 girls’ cricket team for winning the World Cup. Well done on making the nation proud #JaiHind @bcciwomen @bcci.”

“Congratulations to the Women’s under 19 team for winning the World Cup … it’s a great stepping stone for the girls to take their game to the higher level .@BCCIWomen,” tweeted former captain and ex-BCCI chief Saurav Ganguly.

“Today was a landmark day for the Indian women’s U19 team. I would like to pass it on to U19 Men’s captain to deliver a message for the girls,” said Dravid, who had won the 2018 Men’s U19 World Cup as head coach, in a video posted by BCCI.

Landmark day for India women’s U-19 team: Rahul Dravid

India men’s head coach Rahul Dravid has praised the U19 Women’s team for winning the inaugural U19 Women’s T20 World Cup trophy in South Africa, calling the victory a landmark moment for women’s cricket in the country.

Notably, Shafali Verma & Co produced a superb bowling performance to bundle out England for a paltry 68.

Chasing the low total on a slow pitch, India lost Shafali and Shweta Sehrawat in the first four overs however, Soumya Tiwari (24 not out) and Gongadi Trisha (24) shared a 46-run stand for the third wicket to guide their side home in 14 overs and give India their first-ever World Cup title in women’s cricket.

“Today was a landmark day for the Indian women’s U19 team. I would like to pass it on to U19 Men’s captain to deliver a message for the girls,” said Dravid, who had won the 2018 Men’s U19 World Cup as head coach, in a video posted by BCCI.

He passed on the mic to his 2018 Men’s U19 World Cup-winning skipper Prithvi Shaw. “I think it is a great achievement. Congratulations, well done,” said Shaw after which the entire Indian men’s T20I team cheered aloud for the U19 women’s team in unison.

Earlier, BCCI Secretary Jay Shah had announced a cash prize of Rs 5 crore for the India Women’s U19 cricket team and support staff.

“Kudos to the India U19 team for winning the #U19T20WorldCup. This is a phenomenal achievement as our young cricketers have made the country proud. That the young players weren’t overawed by the big occasion speaks volumes about their steely characters and temperament.”

“Women’s Cricket in India is on the upswing and the World Cup triumph has taken the stature of women’s cricket several notches higher. I am delighted to announce INR 5 crore for the entire team and support staff as prize money. This is surely a path-breaking year,” wrote Shah in a series of tweets just after India got their first global title in women’s cricket.

BCCI announces Rs 5 crore cash prize for victorious India U19 Women’s team

BCCI Secretary Jay Shah has announced a cash prize of Rs 5 crore for the India Women’s U19 cricket team and support staff after they beat England by seven wickets to win the inaugural ICC U19 Women’s T20 World Cup trophy at the JB Marks Oval in Potchefstroom, South Africa.

“Kudos to the India U19 team for winning the #U19T20WorldCup. This is a phenomenal achievement as our young cricketers have made the country proud. That the young players weren’t overawed by the big occasion speaks volumes about their steely characters and temperament.”

“Women’s Cricket in India is on the upswing and the World Cup triumph has taken the stature of women’s cricket several notches higher. I am delighted to announce INR 5 crore for the entire team and support staff as prize money. This is surely a path-breaking year,” wrote Shah in a series of tweets just after India got their first global title in women’s cricket.

Notably, Shafali Verma & Co produced a superb bowling performance to bundle out England for a paltry 68.

Chasing the low total on a slow pitch, India lost Shafali and Shweta Sehrawat in the first four overs however, Soumya Tiwari (24 not out) and Gongadi Trisha (24) shared a 46-run stand for the third wicket to guide their side home in 14 overs and give India their first-ever World Cup title in women’s cricket.

Meanwhile, Shah also invited the India U19 women’s team to the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad to be a part of the celebrations when the third T20I between India and New Zealand is played on Wednesday.

“I invite @TheShafaliVerma and her victorious team to join us at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad and witness the third T20I on 1st February. This humongous achievement surely calls for a celebration. @BCCI @BCCIWomen,” he added.