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Ashish Nehra ‘satisfied’ to retire on a high

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Ashish Nehra India vs new zealand
Ashish Nehra waves to crowd after his retirement from all forms of cricket during the first T20 match against New Zealand at Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium.

New Delhi, Nov 2: Very few cricketers bid adieu to international cricket with both the bowling ends named after them and that too in their home ground but veteran pacer Ashish Nehra called himself “fortunate” to have all these during his farewell game — the first T20 International against New Zealand at the Ferozshah Kotla here.

Nehra could not have asked for a better send-off as the men-in-blue also won the contest by 53 runs on Wednesday to register their first victory against the Kiwis in the shortest format.

Recalling his debut Ranji match against Haryana in 1997 from the same end where he was asked to bowl the final over on Wednesday, the 38-year-old said he was satisfied and happy to end on a high.

“I still remember my first match in 1997 when I bowled my very first over in professional cricket against Haryana from the same end. There is no doubt that it’s emotional but I am happy and satisfied to end his career on a high,” Nehra told reporters in the post-match press conference.

“I am very lucky to play my final game in front of my home crowd. This is where I have played my 20 years of cricket. It feels great to retire when you are on top of the game.

“When I informed captain Virat (Kohli) and head coach Ravi Shastri of my decision during the first T20I against Australia at Ranchi, Virat asked me ‘Are you sure'”

“I said ‘this is the time when you are on top of your game and fortunately got a match in Delhi’, what better occasion could I get to hang my boots,” he further said.

After undergoing a dozen surgeries during his 18-year-long injury-littered international career, Nehra said it is his body that will be at peace post retirement.

“I will miss all this. That’s what you train for. One thing which will definitely be at peace will be my body.

“I said earlier that I can go a couple more years, but there can’t be a better time to walk away,” Nehra said.

“I last played Test cricket when I was 24 or 25, but at the end, to have played for 18 years and to be here standing in blue clothing and to have played my final match, I could not have asked for anything more.

“I have no regrets. I am always happy, retired or otherwise,” added Nehra, who took 44 scalps from 17 Tests.

Asked about his future plans, Nehra said he is yet to take a call on whether to go for coaching or commentary roles.

Nehra finished his international career with 34 scalps from 27 T20 Internationals besides taking 157 wickets from 120 One-day Internationals.

IANS

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2nd Test: India 172/3 at stumps, trail by 154 runs vs Australia

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Virat Kohli India vs Australia Test

Perth, Dec 15: India were 172/3 at stumps on the second day of the second Test against Australia at the Perth stadium here on Saturday.

India skipper Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane were batting on 82 and 51 runs respectively when the day ended.

The visiting side still trail by 154 runs against Australia’s first innings total of 326. Resuming the second day at 277/6, the Aussies were all out for 326 shortly before lunch.

Brief Scores: India (First Innings): 172/3 (Virat Kohli 82 batting, Ajinkya Rahane 51 batting) vs Australia (First Innings): 326 (Marcus Harris 70; Ishant Sharma 4/41).

IANS

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India’s Sindhu defeats Thailand’s Intanon, storms into final

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P.V. Sindhu (File Photo)

Guangzhou (China), Dec 15: Indian shuttler P.V. Sindhu defeated former world champion Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand in straight games in their women’s singles semi-final at the 2018 BWF World Tour Finals here on Saturday.

The 23-year-old Olympic silver medallist, who has not lost to World No.8 Intanon in the last two years, breezed into the final after quashing her Thai opponent 21-16, 25-23 in 54 minutes, reports Efe.

The world number six from Hyderabad – who entered the semi-finals after defeating Beiwen Zhang of the US 21-9, 21-15 on Friday – dominated the first game, winning it in 20 minutes after grabbing an initial 6-4 lead.

Intanon bounced back in the second game but Sindhu did not lose nerve and won it in a nail-biting finish to wrap up the match.

Sindhu will now play against Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara in the final on Sunday.

IANS

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PV Sindhu in semis of BWF World Tour Finals

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Guangzhou (China), Dec 14: Star Indian shuttler P.V. Sindhu entered the semi-finals of the BWF World Tour Finals, defeating Beiwen Zhand of US in a lop-sided women’s singles match here on Friday.

The Rio Olympic silver medallist just took 35 minutes to outplay her opponent 21-9, 21-15.

Right from the start, Sindhu dominated the proceedings and easily overpowered her opponent to advance.

In men’s singles match, Sameer Verma defeated Kantaphon Wangcharoen of Thailand 21-9, 21-18 to enter the knock-out stage.

The 45-minute match saw Sameer at his best of abilities in the first game. In the second game the Indian shuttler struggled but was proved better towards the end to bag the issue.

IANS

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