Tag Archives: IPL

RR would be hoping to click in all departments against CSK: Graeme Smith

Former South African cricketer Graeme Smith has reckoned that inaugural Indian Premier League (IPL) champions Rajasthan Royals (RR) would be aiming to give their best in their last league game of the season against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) as it will help them finish in the top two of the points table.

The Sanju Samson-led side has played brilliantly in the most exciting IPL season and a win tonight will put them in the second spot on the leaderboard.

Talking about RR’s strategy against CSK – who were the second team to be eliminated from IPL 2022 – Smith claimed the men in pink and blue should look to put up a comprehensive show against the four-time champions.

Speaking on ‘CRICKET LIVE’ on Star Sports, Smith said: “Jos Buttler should look to get another big knock under the belt. We’ve all talked about the importance of finishing in the top two and giving yourself an extra chance of playing in the knockouts. So that will be key for Rajasthan as well. They’ve played good cricket, they’ve found the form. Hetmyer is back after the birth of his first child so that’s a positive.”

“They would just be hoping that they click in all the departments against CSK. The top two will need to give them a good start,” he added.

Meanwhile, former Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh also claimed that Rajasthan Royals have a golden opportunity to finish in the top two with a win over CSK and they will be disappointed if they lost this game.

Speaking on ‘CRICKET LIVE’ on Star Sports, Harbhajan said: “It is a golden chance for Rajasthan Royals to finish in the top two and give them an extra shot at fighting for the trophy. Beating Chennai Super Kings is never easy for any team but Royals will be disappointed if they fail to win as they’ll lose the opportunity.”

The Royals are currenty placed third in the points table with 16 points in their kitty and another win could see them finish second in the ten-team standings. As of now, RR have won eight of their 13 games and have lost the remaining five.

On the other hand, MS Dhoni-led CSK is already out of the race to the playoffs as they had a season to forget after they managed to win just four out of their 13 games and they would now aim to finish the season on a winning note.

Quite confident Kohli, Rohit will be in top shape before T20 WC: Ganguly

Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma have been struggling with the bat in the ongoing season of the TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) and with the T20 World Cup few months away, the duo’s form has become a cause od concern for the fans and the Indian selectors.

In 13 games this season, former Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) skipper Kohli has managed to score just 236 runs at an average of 19.67 and a strike rate of 113.46. Kohli’s tally comprises just a single half-century and three golden duck dismissals, which is his worst performance in the 14 years of IPL.

Only in the inaugural season of the cash-rich league, Kohli had scored fewer runs than the ongoing edition.

On the other hand, Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit has managed just 218 runs from 12 games at an average of 18.17 and with a strike rate of 125.29. Rohit’s tally comprises five single-digit scores and one dismissal on duck and he is yet to slam a single half-century the ongoing season where his side, which is already out of the race to the playoffs, have couple of more games to play.

In such a scenario, a lot is being talked about the two main pillars of Indian cricket with the T20 World Cup, scheduled to be held in Australia this October, just around the corner and now Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) chief Sourav Ganguly has opened up on the matter and reckoned that the duo will be back in form at the right time.

Speaking to Mid Day, the former India skipper opined that with the T20 World Cup still far away, he remains unfazed over Kohli and Rohit’s current form and also backed them to bounce back strongly.

“I’m not worried at all about the form of Rohit or Virat. They are too good…real big players. The World Cup is far away and I am quite confident that they will be in top shape much before the tournament,” he said.

Notably, after the ongoing edition of the IPL, India will play four T20I series with the five-match contest against South Africa scheduled to begin in June which will be followed by T20Is in Ireland and three in England and three more at home against Australia, although it is yet to be conformed by the BCCI.

Brendon McCullum named England men’s Test team head coach

Former New Zealand cricketer Brendon McCullum has been appointed as the head coach of England’s men’s test team, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Thursday.

Issuing a statement, the ECB said: “McCullum, 40, will be in place to start his role for next month’s LV Insurance three-match Test series against New Zealand, which gets underway at Lord’s from 2 June, subject to obtaining the necessary work visa.”

The ECB’s selection panel of Chief Executive Officer Tom Harrison, Managing Director of England’s Men’s Cricket Rob Key, Strategic Adviser Andrew Strauss and Performance Director Mo Bobat unanimously agreed that he was the outstanding candidate for the role, having impressed during the competitive interview process.

Notably, New Zealand born McCullum is currently serving as the head coach of the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). He had previously coached Trinbago Knight Riders to the 2020 Caribbean Premier League title.

Commenting on the development, Rob Key, said: “We are delighted to confirm Brendon as England Men’s Test Head Coach. It has been a real privilege to get to know him and understand his views and vision for the game. I believe his appointment will be good for England’s Test team. He has a recent history of changing cricket culture and environments for the better, and I believe he is the person to do that for England’s red-ball cricket. We were incredibly fortunate to have a seriously strong list of quality candidates for the post, with Brendon demonstrating he was our number one choice.”

“I would like to thank Tom Harrison and the ECB Board for their support in this process. I believe in Brendon and Ben Stokes – a formidable coach and captain partnership. Time for us all to buckle up and get ready for the ride,” he added.

On the other hand, an elated McCullum said: “I would like to say how pleased I am to be given this opportunity to positively contribute to England’s Test cricket set-up and move the team forward into a more successful era. In taking this role on, I am acutely aware of the significant challenges the team faces at present, and I strongly believe in my ability to help the team emerge as a stronger force once we’ve confronted them head-on.”

“I have enjoyed several robust conversations with Rob Key about the direction of travel for the team and have found his enthusiasm contagious. I’m no stranger to bringing about change within a team environment, and I can’t wait to get started. Ben Stokes is the perfect character to inspire change around him, and I look forward to working closely with him to build a successful unit around us,” he added.

McCullum featured in 101 Tests for New Zealand and was the Test skipper of the Black Caps from 2012 to his international retirement in 2016. He will arrive in the UK later this month after the completion of his assignment wit the KKR, who have two matches left in their IPL league stage.

IPL 2022: Injured Jadeja likely to miss CSK’s remaining games in ongoing season

In what could be another setback for four-time Indian Premier League (IPL) champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK), ace all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja is likley to miss the remaining games of his franchise in the ongoing season due to an injury.

Notably, Jadeja had picked up an upper body injury during CSK’s game against RCB following which he was forced to miss the clash against the Faf du Plessis-led side. As per a report in The Times of India, Jadeja is set to miss the remaining matches of CSK.

According to the report, CSK monitored Jadeja’s injury closely over the past couple of days and noticed that it has not improved much.

With the MS Dhoni-led side set to take on Mumbai Indians (MI) on Thursday, the loss of the star all-rounder will not be the best thing to have happened for the side as it has very slim chances to qualify for the IPL Playoffs.

Earlier, Jadeja had started the ongoing season as the captain of the side however, he later decided to step down midway after a string of poor performances in the current tournament following which Dhoni had to once again take up the mantle of captaincy.

Significantly, CSK have four wins from 11 games so far in the ongoing season.

In order to qualify for the next stage, CSK have to first win all their remaining games and then depend on the results of other games. For the Yellow Brigade, only a miracle can see them through to the Playoffs.

As of now, the Hardik Pandya-led Gujarat Titans (GT) are the only side to have sealed a playoffs’ berth.

Responsibility of leading a franchise bringing the best out of Hardik: Experts

Newbies Gujarat Titans became the first team to qualify for the playoffs in the ongoing TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 on the back of scintillating performances in the league stage.

Titans, under the leadership of their charismatic skipper Hardik Pandya, humbled debutants Lucknow Super Giants in their latest game by 62 runs and confirmed a playoff berth in style.

With 9 wins and 18 points in their kitty, Titans are placed comfortably at the top of the points table in the TATA IPL 2022 and they also look to favourites to finish in the top two.

Proving the cricket pundits wrong with their game, the Titans have been a team to beat in the most exciting IPL season and Hardik Pandya emerged as the best captain of the tournament so far.

Without any prior experience in captaincy, Hardik proved the naysayers wrong with his leadership skills and street smart decisions. He’s making the right calls at the right time and backing his players to the hilt, which are great signs for any leader.

The way Hardik is marshalling his troops is simply amazing and as a result, the team sees a new match-winner in every game. The decision to hand over a debut cap to an uncapped R Sai Kishore at the business end of the tournament also shows the confidence of the team management and the skipper in its bench strength.

Hardik has impressed with his astute captaincy moves. Experts reckon the added responsibility of leading the franchise is bringing the best out of the star India all-rounder.

Former Australian cricketer Matthew Hayden reckons Hardik is showing all the qualities of a good leader in the ongoing tournament as he keeps performing well against big teams.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Matthew Hayden said, “Good cricketers, good leaders in particular keep their best for the best of times and that’s Hardik Pandya (for you) right now. He’s performing well in all departments. I love his energy and the enthusiasm that he brings to the table.”

Hardik has returned to the cricket pitch after recovering from an injury but he’s showing no signs of fatigue or inhibitions. The Baroda all-rounder has amassed 344 runs in 11 games at an impressive strike rate of 131.80. Hardik has notched up three half-centuries in the most exciting IPL season and leading by example in all three departments.

Former Indian batting great Sunil Gavaskar lauded the Indian cricketer’s all-round skills and the discipline he’s showing in the ongoing tournament.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Gavaskar said, “Hat’s off to the hard work he’s been putting in. He didn’t play a lot of cricket before the IPL because he was recovering from an injury. (Now) Look at the discipline he’s showing in his batting. He’s batting well in the powerplay and making full use of the field restrictions, he’s doing exceedingly well in the field and getting better with every game.”

Former Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh – who has shared the dressing room with Hardik during his stint with Mumbai Indians – believes a player like Hardik requires a breathing space and he’s getting that freedom from Gujarat Titans think tank.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Harbhajan said, “A player like Hardik should have the freedom to work on his game, and he’s getting that at Gujarat Titans. For me, he is the best captain in this season so far. He is taking responsibility. Now he is bowling his full quota of four overs. He is leading the team from the front and has made a habit of scoring consistently with his bat. He always looks to motivate his teammates.”

Former Indian cricketer Mohammad Kaif – who has plied his trade both as a player, as well as a coach, in the IPL – claimed Hardik is relishing the responsibility and that is why his game is looking more balanced.

Kaif said on Cricket Live on Star Sports, “Hardik is now a changed player. As a captain, he is taking the responsibility of leading the team’s middle-order seriously, and scoring heavily. You can see, he is not getting overly aggressive this season, which is a major shift in his batting approach from the previous seasons.”

Suryakumar Yadav ruled out of IPL 2022 due to left forearm muscle injury

In a cause of concern for five-time champions Mumbai Indians (MI), middle-order mainstay Suryakumar Yadav has been ruled out of rest of IPL 2022 due to a left forearm muscle injury.

The news comes as a massive blow for the Rohit Sharma-led MI, who are aiming to finish the ongoing season on a good note after being officially eliminated from the race to playoffs.

“Suryakumar Yadav has sustained a muscle strain on the left forearm and has been ruled out for the season. He has been advised rest, in consultation with the BCCI medical team,” said a statement by the franchise ahead of their match against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the DY Patil Stadium.

According to the advisory issued by the tournament, Yadav sustained the injury during Mumbai’s thrilling five-run win over Gujarat Titans at the Brabourne Stadium on May 6. Yadav was one of the four retained players by the five-time IPL champions ahead of the 2022 IPL Mega Auction.

He had missed Mumbai’s first two matches against Delhi Capitals and Rajasthan Royals due to his recovery from a hairline fracture he sustained while fielding in India’s home T20I series against West Indies at Kolkata in February this year.

Yadav had then gone to the National Cricket Academy (NCA) for rehabilitation and recovery from the hairline fracture for over three weeks and then joined the Mumbai side in IPL 2022.

Yadav, 31, was one of the few bright spots for Mumbai in a forgettable campaign, being their second-highest run-getter by scoring 303 runs in eight matches at an average of 43.29 and strike-rate of 145.67, including three half-centuries.

One of the three fifties from Yadav’s bat was a 39-ball 51 which led to Mumbai registering their first win of the current season in a return fixture over Rajasthan Royals at DY Patil Stadium.

Tilak Varma going to serve Mumbai Indians for next ten years: Irfan Pathan

Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan believes that young Mumbai Indians middle-order batsman Tilak Varma is a bright investment from the franchise and the talented cricketer is going to offer his services to them for the next ten years in the TATA Indian Premier League (IPL).

Varma – the 19-year-old left-handed batsman – has done exceedingly well for the five-time champions in the most exciting IPL season.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Pathan said, “Whenever a youngster does well he starts believing that he belongs here and once he gets the confidence he looks to cement his position in the team. We are seeing the same with Tilak Varma. He’s a talented left-hand middle-order batsman, who is worth gold in cricket. Every team looks to have a left-hander because he plays spin at ease, they have that natural ability to handle those angles from leg-spinners and left-arm spinners.”

“This young hero will become a superhero for MI if he continues to play like this. He’ll play for the franchise for the next ten years,” he added.

On the other hand, former Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh also praised Mumbai Indians for showing faith in the young talents in Tilak Varma and Dewald Brevis who are showing glimpses of greatness and the duo are going to represent the team for the next ten years.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Harbhajan said, “Dewald Brevis and Tilak Varma are like investments for the Mumbai Indians. MI has invested correctly in these young talents and will reap the benefits for many years. Brevis and Tilak have shown glimpses of their talents and they are going to don the MI jersey for the next ten years.”

“We have witnessed some unbelievable talents in this competition and the confidence which these youngsters are showing is simply outstanding,” he added.

‘World-class batter’ Rovman Powell equally good against pace, spin: Shane Watson

Delhi Capitals (DC) all-rounder Rovman Powell has finally arrived at the big stage of TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) and showing the world what he’s capable of with his match-winning performances.

In the most exciting IPL season, the cricketer from Jamaica has joined the league of big-hitters from the Caribbean who sell like hotcakes in the tournament.

Delhi Capitals assistant coach Shane Watson has lauded Powell for his performance and claimed the Jamaican hits the ball a long way even in the nets.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Watson said: “Rovman Powell is certainly a good player for the side. I haven’t really seen him bat a lot in the last couple of years. But what I’ve seen of him in the nets and during a couple of training sessions (that I’ve had with him), he hits the ball a long way. Even if he mishits, the ball still travels a long way.”

“So that’s the beauty of seeing him come together in the last couple of games,” he added.

Watson – who is himself an IPL legend – went on to say that Powell’s confidence grew manifolds after his match-winning 33* off 16 deliveries against Kolkata Knight Riders, and from then on this big-hitting Jamaican hasn’t looked back. The former Aussie also claimed that Powell plays both spin and pace with dexterity.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Watson said: “It took him just one innings (against KKR) to find his rhythm. From then on, his mindset and technique from ball one has been absolutely outstanding. He’s a world-class batsman. He’s on top of his game against spin bowling, fast bowling, and very fast bowling.”

“So, it’s beautiful to see him show the stuff on the IPL stage which is as good as it gets,” he added.

Right men pitching up at right time for RCB, team brimming with confidence: Ravi Shastri

Former Indian captain Ravi Shastri has reckoned that the Royal Challengers Bangalorev(RCB) side is doing well in the ongoing TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) 2022 because the team is not looking reliant on a few players and different players are rising to the occasion instead.

Under the leadership of Faf du Plessis, the RCB have done well in the most exciting IPL season and experts believe they are certainly going to make it to the playoffs and are even capable of lifting the title.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Shastri said, “They are doing well and the win against CSK must have given them a lot of confidence. This looks like a much better dressing room now. RCB players must be brimming with confidence, and their mindset will be different now as the right men are pitching up at the right time for the side.”

“They are putting up a good all-round show in the tournament,” he added.

On the other hand, former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra claimed the balance of RCB looks better this time and that is why the team is doing so well.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Chopra said, “The balance of RCB currently looks quite good. It used to be a bit different in the earlier seasons but this year a lot is going well for them. Earlier it used to be a team of alpha males i.e. AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli but that’s not the case this year.”

“They have plenty of options in the bowling department which is the best thing for them,” he added.

Meanwhile, former England cricketer Graeme Swann also praised the du Plessis-led RCB for their performance in the ongoing season and claimed that this team is capable of beating anyone on its day.

Swann also backed the RCB’s top-four batters to do well in the remaining games of the ongoing IPL season.

Speaking on Cricket Live on Star Sports, Swann said, “Let’s face it, this team is full of quality players. If their batsmen actually support each other and one of their top-four (batters) goes on to score that 70-80, they could beat anybody on their day.”

“Whether they go on to do that remains to be seen. Certainly, their top four is very-very spicy,” he added.

With seven wins from 12 games, RCB have 14 points in the ten-team standings and are placed at the fourt place.

On Sunday, RCB registered a thumping 67-run win over Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) at the historic Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. They will next take on Punjab Kings (PBKS) in their second-least game of the league stage at the Brabourne stadium in Mumbai on Friday (May 13).

IPL 2022: DC team member tests Covid-19 positive ahead of clash vs CSK

The Delhi Capitals contingent has been forced into isolation following the emergence of a positive Covid-19 case in the latest round of testing on Sunday.

Although no official statement has been made either by the franchise or the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), it has been reported that a net bowler is the one to test positive for the deadly virus.

The incident came to light just hew hours before the Rishabh Pant-led DC was scheduled to face Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in their 11th match of the ongoing TATA Indian Premier League (IPL) season at the DY Patil Stadium on Sunday (May 8) evening.

As per reports, a fresh round testing took place on Sunday morning with all members of the DC contingent confined to their rooms.

Notably, it was for the second time during the ongoing 2022 season that the DC team has been forced to enter into isolation as earlier, six members of the contingent including physio Patrick Farhart, all-rounder Mitchell Marsh, keeper-batter Tim Seifert and three other non-playing members had tested positive for Covid-19.

Following the positive case in the cam, DC’s match against Punjab Kings (PBKS) and Rajasthan Royals (RR), which was originally scheduled to be held in Pune, was relocated to Mumbai.

Significantly as per the IPL guidelines, any person testing positive in the tournament bio-bubble would need to isolate for a minimum of seven days and to re-enter the bubble, the person would need to return consecutive negative RT-PCR tests taken 24 hours apart.

Moreover, if a franchise had multiple positive cases, the IPL rule says that the team can take the field with a minimum of 12 players, including seven Indians and one substitute and in that case where 12 players are not available then the IPL would take the final call, which would be final and binding.

Notably, the 2020 season of the lucrative league was postponed due to the first wave of the pandemic. The season however, was later staged in the UAE.

Later in 2021, the IPL season was forced to be stopped mid-way after several players had returned positive inside the Ahmedabad and Delhi bio-bubbles. The season was later shifted to the UAE for its completion.

The current year however, witnessed sharp decline in Covid cases following which the tournament organisers decided to allow 25 per cent capacity of crowds in the stadiums.

As of now, DC have played ten matches, winning five and losing the remaining ones. The Pant-led side are currently placed fifth in the ten-team points-table.