News Cricket

Virat Kohli a few runs away from achieving remarkable feat in IPL 

Staff Writer Updated: 28 March, 2019, 1:42 PM IST


The Indian Premier League has taken the intensity to another level in the ongoing season. From few controversial calls to close finishes, the cash rich league is living up to its top billing in the world. Virat Kohli's RCB will take on Mumbai Indians at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru.

In today's game, Virat Kohli has a chance to become second batsman after Suresh Raina to touch 5,000-run mark in the cash rich league. The right hand batsman is just 46 runs away from reaching this landmark. Suresh Raina, who plays for Chennai Super Kings, had achieved the feat in the opening game of the season against Royal Challengers Bangalore on March 23.

The outing against the defending champions didn't panned out positively for the Bangalore based team. Batting first, they were dismissed for a below-par score, which was easily chased down by the home team.

RCB are still waiting to win its maiden title in the league, and Virat Kohli is confident of a better result from last time, where they finished in the bottom half of the table.

After losing the first game because of batting failure, Virat would want to see his batters among runs at the iconic M Chinnaswamy Stadium.

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News Cricket

Fans troll R Ashwin for his captaincy blunder against Kolkata Knight Riders

Staff Writer Updated: 28 March, 2019, 2:08 PM IST


R Ashwin was once again at the receiving end during the ongoing Indian Premier League. He was brutally trolled by fans for making a captaincy blunder during his team's match against Kolkata Knight Riders. Ashwin, who gave away 47 runs from his four overs, was having tough time to contain the rival batters in the last overs of the innings.

In his quest to keep Russell quite, Shami got better of him for three in the 17th over. However, Russell was recalled by the umpires after the intervention of third umpire. Ashwin had only three fielders inside the circle instead of four and hence the delivery was declared a no-ball.

This mistake proved costly as Russell scored 48 runs. The damage was done as KKR finished 218/4 and won the game by 28 runs. Ashwin who was lambasted for 'mankading' Rajasthan Royals' Jos Buttler, faced more flak after the blunder against Knight Riders.

Videos Cricket

 Watch: Shah Rukh Khan once again proves he is the most humble owner in IPL

Staff Writer Updated: 28 March, 2019, 1:57 PM IST


The co-owner of Kolkata Knight Riders, Shah Rukh Khan has once again won hearts with his noble gesture towards the differently-abled fan Harshul. After Kolkata Knight Riders defeated Kings XI Punjab in the second game at the Eden Gardens, Bollywood superstar went to Harshul and kissed him.

He was mighty impressed with the way his franchise has started its IPL campaign in 2019. SRK was also present during KKR's first game against the Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Here's the video of SRK with Harshul:

All-rounder Andre Russell played an important part in KKR's victory of Kings XI Punjab. Batting first, Knight Riders scored 218 runs. Robin Uthappa (67 not-out), Nitish Rana and Andre Russell (48 not-out) played impressive knocks.

Chasing 219 runs to win, KXIP were rocked early by rival bowlers. They lost their openers cheaply and even last match hero Sarfaraz Khan also perished on 13. Mayank Agarwal (58 off 34) and David Miller (59 not out off 40) tried their best but couldn't lead their team to win. KXIP finished their innings on 190/4.

Videos Cricket

Watch: Dhoni calls Raina 'Harami Launda' during Kedar Jadhav’s birthday celebration

Staff Writer Updated: 28 March, 2019, 1:52 PM IST


Chennai Super Kings have once again demonstrated why they are the best side in the history of the Indian Premier League. After defeating Royal Challengers Bangalore in the opening game of the season at the Chepauk, MS Dhoni's troops thrashed Delhi Capitals by six wickets at the Feroz Shah Kotla in New Delhi.

CSK, who have won the league thrice, are the defending champions, having defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad in the finale of the last edition. The way they have played in the ongoing season, their fans are sure of seeing them romping to fourth IPL title victory.

Kedar Jadhav was celebrating his 34th birthday when Kings emerged victorious against Capitals. After the victory, Jadhav’s birthday was celebrated in style by his teammates. The cake was smeared on his and during the course of cake cutting ceremony and joyful moments, MS Dhoni called Suresh Raina as a ‘Harami Launda’.

News Cricket

Picture from KKR vs KXIP game ignites Mankad debate once again 

Staff Writer Updated: 28 March, 2019, 12:31 PM IST


Mankad was once again the topic of discussion during last night IPL game between Kolkata Knight Riders and Kings XI Punjab. Although, R Ashwin was not the talking point but his team had its involvement. During Kings XI Punjab's batting, Mayank Agarwal was seen standing outside the crease at the non-strikers end in one of the overs bowled by Andre Russell.

Former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra pointed out that it was bowlers’ mistake for missing the clear opportunity to run-out Mayank Agarwal.

"Missed Opportunity....more bowlers need to start running batsmen out at the non-striker’s end. It’s a 22-yard pitch...don’t let them make it 20 yards. #Unfair."

Former Aussie speedster Mitchell Johnson also shared the picture on his twitter handle. "#bowlersfault #checkbowlersfrontfootfornoball," he wrote.

Earlier, Ashwin's mankading act had the cricket fraternity divided. While some backed Ashwin, most of the former players lambasted KXIP captain.

The law justifies mankading. Law 41.16 states: "If the non-striker is out of his/her ground from the moment the ball comes into play to the instant when the bowler would normally have been expected to release the ball, the bowler is permitted to attempt to run him/her out".

News Cricket

South African legend comes out in support of R Ashwin

Staff Writer Updated: 28 March, 2019, 11:57 AM IST


After Rahul Dravid, South African great AB de Villiers has come out in support of Kings XI Punjab's captain, Ravichandran Ashwin. Ravi Ashwin made the headlines when he mankaded English international and Rajasthan Royals' opener, Jos Buttler at Jaipur. AB de Villiers, however, also expressed his sympathy for Jos Buttler.

“I felt sorry for Buttler because he wasn’t trying to steal a run, and Ashwin did nothing wrong because he was operating within the laws,” the Bangalore star wrote in his column for the Times of India.

“It’s still a grey area, and Law 41.16 needs to be clarified. Either running a batsman out at the non-striker’s end is legal or it isn’t — can somebody please decide,” he added.

Royal Challengers Bangalore started off their 2019 IPL campaign with a terrible loss against defending champions, Chennai Super Kings. Today, they will take on Mumbai Indians at their home ground.

News Cricket

Quinton de Kock reveals the way Mumbai can beat RCB

Harshit Anand Updated: 28 March, 2019, 11:08 AM IST


Today, Mumbai Indians will clash with Royal Challengers Bangalore at M.Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru. Both Mumbai and Bangalore started off their IPL campaign with defeats, so it will be a chance for them to make amends.

Quinton de Kock, who represented RCB last year and is in Mumbai's side this year, revealed the one threat that his side would need to conquer if they want to win the tie against the Kohli-led RCB.

“AB being AB, he is a big wicket for them. I think if we get him out pretty early, we stand a good chance of doing well in the game. So we have spoken about it — about how we’re going to try and get him out and hopefully it comes off tomorrow,” Quinton de Kock told reporters on the eve of the match.

“Otherwise, we just hope he (de Villiers) makes a mistake,” he added.

Mumbai are known to be slow starters and they will need to get into their groove quickly. “Any big tournament around the world, everybody wants to get off to a good start. Coming into this game, knowing we haven’t won a game, so it’s a big game for us tomorrow. We need to get going with a win and hopefully build some momentum, get things rolling for our campaign this year,” he said.

News Cricket

Australia romps to 80-run win against Pakistan in 3rd ODI

AP Updated: 28 March, 2019, 10:27 AM IST


Australia romped to an 80-run win against Pakistan in the third one-day international on Wednesday and took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series.

Captain Aaron Finch missed out on an opportunity to become the first Australian to hit three consecutive ODI hundreds but his 90 off 136 balls anchored the world champions to 266-6.

Glenn Maxwell, dropped on 28, accelerated after Finch was caught out in the deep and scored 71 off 55 balls as Pakistan conceded 90 runs in the last 10 overs.

Leg spinner Adam Zampa hurried through the Pakistan tail enders with career-best figures of 4-43 to bowl out the home team for 186 in 44.4 overs.

Fast bowler Pat Cummins, playing his first match of the series, had earlier polished off the top order to finish with 3-24.

"If we had lost tonight, it would have been my fault for batting so slow," Finch said. "But we ended up getting a good score on a difficult wicket. The rain put a bit of moisture in the wicket, and Cummins and Behrendorff exploited that. Our spinners were incredibly good again."

Opening batsman Imam-ul-Haq top scored with 46, but Pakistan, which rested seven of its likely World Cup players for this series, always struggled against the pace of Cummins and spin of Zampa.

"We are trying to give all the players chances so that selection committee and team management both have a better picture in front of them," Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik said. "If we win two games, we have something in our pocket."

Earlier, Australia stuttered to 20-2 after unusual rain in Abu Dhabi delayed the start of the match by 15 minutes.

Usman Shinwari clean bowled Usman Khawaja in the first over and Shaun Marsh was caught off Junaid Khan.

Finch and Peter Handscomb rebuilt the innings with an 84-run stand before part time left arm spinner Haris Sohail undone Peter Handscomb with a delivery that shaped away from the right hander.

Handscomb hit four of his six boundaries to 18-year-old fast bowler Mohammad Hasnain in one over before being dismissed for 47 off 43 balls.

Australia was buckled down by Pakistan spinners Imad Wasim (1-34) and Yasir Shah (1-47) in the middle overs on a slow wicket before Maxwell got better of the seamers after Finch departed in the 42nd over.

Finch, who hit five fours and a six, looked set for his third successive century before he holed out at long on in Shah's last over.

Maxwell was given a let-off when Imam-ul-Haq dropped a sitter at point and the Australian batsman cut lose thereafter. Maxwell hit eight fours and a six in his chancy knock before getting run out in the 47th over.

Malik and Imam shared a 59-run stand but the Australian bowlers always controlled the game once Cummins found the outside edges of Shan Masood, Haris Sohail and Mohammad Rizwan which reduced Pakistan to 16-3.

Imad Wasim scored 43 and Umar Akmal made 36 before Zampa wrapped up the innings quickly as Pakistan was bowled out with more than five overs to spare.

Australia won the first two matches at Sharjah by identical margins of eight wickets. Dubai will host the remaining two games on Friday and Sunday.

News Cricket

 Bravo terms MS Dhoni as the "best captain" in the world

Harshit Anand Updated: 27 March, 2019, 5:30 PM IST


Chennai Super Kings made a grand comeback to the cash-rich IPL, last year. They went on to win the title after not being part of the league in the preceding two seasons. Now, they have made a great start to the 2019 season of IPL as well by winning the first two games.

Dwayne Bravo, who has been an integral part of CSK in IPL disclosed quite a few interesting details about the side.

“We are aware of our age. It’s there and you can google it but that’s nothing. We are not 60 year-olds, we are 35, 32-year-olds. We are still young, we look after our bodies and we have a lot of experience.

“In any sport, in any tournament, you just cannot beat experience. We know our weaknesses and we play smart and we are well led by the best captain in the world. And he [Dhoni] keeps reminding us that you know we are not the fastest team, but we can be the smartest team,” Bravo added.

“We don’t plan. We don’t have team meetings. We just turn up and go with the flow. MS has a style, and every player has a style. We just watch the situation and adapt quickly and that’s where experience comes in,” said Bravo .

News Cricket

Jofra Archer names the best T20 bowler in the world

Harshit Anand Updated: 27 March, 2019, 4:54 PM IST


Rajasthan Royals bowler, Jofra Archer is counted among the upcoming stars of the game. He has already made a name for himself with his inspiring displays in the shortest format of the game. The lanky pacer shot to fame with his exploits in Australia's Big Bash League and from there onwards, he has not looked back.

The Barbados born speedster has 105 scalps in 82 T20s. He recently revealed that he considers India's Jasprit Bumrah as the best T20 bowler and also explained why.

“I am going to say that I quite like Bumrah. I would include a spinner in the list and that is Rashid Khan. So it’s myself, Bumrah and Rashid, who are three best bowlers in T20 cricket,” Archer, playing for Rajasthan Royals in the ongoing IPL, told PTI during an interview.

“With the new ball, it can go either way, so for all the fast bowlers, it is essential that you have an extra edge at the death,” said Archer.

“Even with Bumrah's action, he bowls yorkers really well. And the key to possessing a potent slower delivery in case of Bumrah is his action. His hands go on all directions and suddenly you will find it really hard to pick up the slower one,” explained Archer.

Feature Cricket

MCC statement clarifies legality of Buttler's dismissal

Partab Ramchand Updated: 27 March, 2019, 4:06 PM IST


Not unexpectedly the storm over Ravi Ashwin’s dismissal of Jos Buttler on Monday is not abating. The pros and cons, those for and against either the bowler or the batsmen have all aired their views and opinion is divided.

But the most important reaction has come from MCC the guardians of the laws of cricket who have defended the controversial circumstances of Buttler’s dismissal stating that it is not against the Spirit of Cricket for a bowler to run out a batsman at the non-striker’s end. However MCC stated that the legality of the dismissal came down to the umpire’s interpretation of the law given that Butler had not been seeking to gain an advantage in the moments before Ashwin chose to abort his delivery stride and attempt the dismissal.

The relevant part of Law 41.16 states: ``If the non-striker is out of his ground from the moment the ball comes into play to the instant when the bowler would normally have been expected to release the ball, the bowler is permitted to attempt to run him out.’’

MCC however acknowledged the ambiguity of the current wording of the law pertaining to the non-striker leaving his ground early. Given that the ICC’s interpretation of the law clarifies that the ``expected moment of release’’ comes when ``the arm reaches its highest point’’ in a bowler’s delivery stride MCC concluded that it was understandable how Bruce Oxenford the TV umpire had seen it fit to give Butler out.

Most importantly the MCC in its statement clarified that it has never been in the laws that a warning should be given to the non-striker and nor is it against the Spirit of Cricket to run out a non-striker who is seeking to gain an advantage by leaving his ground early. ``Furthermore with batsmen now being deemed in or out by millimeters by TV replays on quick singles it is right that they should remain in their ground at the non-strikers end until it is fair for them to leave.’’

That puts to rest all talk that a bowler should warn the batsman before running him out. In short, in future if the non-striker does not want to be ``Mankaded’’ he should stay within the crease till the ball is delivered.

Feature Cricket

Call A Spade a Spade…

Sreelata S Yellamrazu Updated: 27 March, 2019, 4:00 PM IST


For the better part of the last twenty four hours, the cricket world has been abuzz about the Kings XI Punjab captain’s decision to run out the batsman from the Rajasthan Royals through a tricky dismissal known as ‘Mankad’ing. However, one wonders how it is easy to call it a violation of the spirit of the game issue when the rules of the game are quite explicit.

Quite a stir has been created over an issue that has been quite clear as per the laws of the game. Jos Buttler, himself a repeat offender of walking out of his crease at the non-striker’s end, is once again making a hue and cry about an issue that he himself stated he was in the wrong in the past. He stated it himself in 2016, two years after he claimed indignation at being mankaded by Sri Lanka, calling it ‘a batsman error’. Along with the England wicketkeeper-batsman, much of the cricket world that is up in arms appears to have forgotten that there is a place for the spirit of the game and also, one for adhering to the laws.

Ravichandran Ashwin was well within his right to spot the non-striker out of his crease in the course of his run up and dismiss him in the fashion he did. Those that claim that Ashwin had no intention of bowling the ball – when a bowler will stop in his tracks in order to effect the removing of the bails, must, also, look at the batsman’s behavior before making such a judgement. For the Kings XI Punjab bowler and captain to be vilified in such fashion seems out of place when the cricket law clears states that the bowler is well within his rights.

Furthermore, nowhere does it state that the bowler must warn the batsman although there have been past instances. For Jos Buttler and for those who are calling foul from a high moral ground must remember they are living in glass houses themselves and that Buttler, from his own experience, should have known better, not only knowing the laws as a batsman but also, as a wicketkeeper and furthermore, of having faced such an ignominy himself in the recent past.

It would have been equally telling on Ashwin had he merely warned the batsman and let him off while his team was struggling to pull back the match. It is quite plausible that the same people making the argument for Buttler today would have criticized Ashwin for being ‘soft’ when the game demanded action to make something happen for the team.

Just because a batsman is in good form does not mean that the bowler has unfairly deprived the cricket world of fireworks. Ashwin did what any bowler should do in a world skewed in favour of the batsman. After all, is it not school boy training for a batsman to always remember to have his bat behind the crease? The law book says so. Where is the spirit of the game if not in upholding the law?

If this brings shame upon Ashwin, perhaps those that are deeming it so should look at their own actions as well as the ones perpetrated that have far demonized the game and the men who make up the sport, particularly when it comes from the Rajasthan Royals whose players were caught spot fixing, who are batting for Steve Smith who failed to uphold the high echelons of captaincy despite being one of the world’s best batsmen at the time of sandpaper-gate and have Shane Warne who did not think about standards when dealing with bookies or the many shenanigans that eventually cost him the Australian captaincy.

News Cricket

“I was hated nationally, and it was not easy": KL Rahul opens up on Koffee with Karan controversy

Harshit Anand Updated: 27 March, 2019, 3:54 PM IST


The Koffee with Karan controversy made KL Rahul doubt himself as a person. Being a cricketer is never easy as it brings intense scrutiny over your life. Rahul experienced the worst side of being a public figure after he partnered Hardik Pandya in the Karan Johar hosted TV talk show, where Pandya made sexist comments on women. Although Rahul didn't say anything wrong about girls, but he was also brutally targeted on social media.

Rahul opened up on how traumatic it was to deal with after effects of Koffee with Karan episode, the backlash of which, created ripples.

“The last two months have been very, very tough for me. When it happened, I had started to doubt myself as a person,” Rahul told India Today on Wednesday.

“I was hated nationally, and it was not easy. I always thought I was a good person and then I started to believe oth