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Don’t think ICC has power to pursue BCCI to play Pakistan: Akram

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Wasim Akram, Photo Source Twitter

Lahore, Nov 10: Former Pakistan skipper Wasim Akram on Friday hit out at the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) inability to pursue the BCCI to play a bilateral series with Pakistan.

Akram, popularly known as the Sultan of Swing, said it is very unfortunate that young cricketers from Pakistan and India are unable to play against each other.

The 51-year-old lashed out at the ICC for failing to initiate an India-Pakistan series which he felt should be separated from politics.

“I don’t think ICC has the power to pursue BCCI, but again I have always said people-to-people contact is necessary. Politics and sport should be separate,” Akram was quoted as saying by Geo TV.

The legendary left-arm pacer further said that an India-Pakistan clash is more exciting to watch than the high-octane Ashes series between traditional rivals England and Australia.

“A Pakistan-India match is more fun to watch than the Ashes. Twenty million people watch the Ashes while a Pakistan-India match is watched by a billion people,” emphasised Akram, who took 502 wickets from 356 ODIs.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), in 2014, had agreed to play six bilateral series with Pakistan from 2015 to 2023, four of which were to be hosted by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).

However, with political tensions across the border, the BCCI has refused to play any of the agreed series yet, neither in Pakistan nor at any neutral venue.

The arch-rivals, however, met in ICC tournaments with the Champions Trophy final in June being the latest when the Sarfraz Ahmed-led Green Brigade thrashed Virat Kohli’s side by 180 runs in London.

IANS

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Asia Cup: Afghanistan thrash Bangladesh by 136 runs

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Afghanistan Cricket Team

Abu Dhabi, Sep 21 : A disciplined all-round effort saw Afghanistan thrashing Bangladesh by 136 runs in their last group match of the Asia Cup here on Thursday.

Chasing 256, Bangladesh were bundled out for 119.

Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Gulbadin Naib and Rashid Khan picked up two wickets each to hand Afghanistan a comfortable victory.

Chasing a decent target, Bangladesh never looked in the contention as they lost their wickets at regular intervals.

Shakib Al Hasan (32), Mahmudullah (27) and Mosaddek Hossain (26 not out) mainly contributed to the Bangladeshi score. No other batsman clicked and went back to the pavilion one after another, posting single digit individual scores.

Mahmudullah and Mosaddek Hossain scored towards the end but the lack of support denied the run chase.

Earlier, Afghanistan rode on some brilliant batting by Rashid Khan (57 not out), Gulbadin Naib (42 not out) and Hashmatullah Shahidi (58) to post a decent score.

Besides the trio, opener Mohammad Shahzad (37) also played handsomely.

For Bangladesh, Shakib Al Hasan took four wickets while Abu Hider Rony scalped two wickets.

Brief scores: Afghanistan 255/7, (Hashmatullah Shahidi 58, Rashid Khan 57 not out; Shakib Al Hasan 4/42) against Bangladesh 119/10 (Shakib Al Hasan 32; Rashid Khan 2/13)

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Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel and Shardul Thakur ruled out of Asia Cup

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Mumbai, Sep 20: Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel and Shardul Thakur have been ruled out of the ongoing Asia Cup 2018 owing to injuries, the BCCI announced on Thursday.

BCCI’s senior selection committee has now replaced the trio by Deepak Chahar, Ravindra Jadeja and Siddharth Kaul, who will be joining the team in Dubai on Thursday.

All-rounder Hardik Pandya had suffered an acute lower back spasm during the game against Pakistan on Wednesday and is undergoing treatment and assessment by the BCCI medical team.

Meanwhile, left-arm spinner Axar Patel injured his left index finger while fielding against Pakistan. He was sent for scans and the results showed that he had a tendon tear.

On the other hand, right-arm pacer Shardul Thakur had experienced right hip and groin soreness after the match against Hong Kong.

The Rohit Sharma-led Indian side, who had thrashed arch-rivals Pakistan by eight wickets on Wednesday, will take on Bangladesh in their first Super four game on Friday.

IANS

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Asia Cup 2018: India thrash Pakistan by eight wickets

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India vs pak asia cup 2018

Dubai, Sep 19: A strong bowling performance followed by some power-packed batting saw India thrash arch-rivals Pakistan by eight wickets in their Group A clash of the Asia Cup cricket tournament here on Wednesday.

Asked to field first, three-wicket hauls from pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar and part-time off-spinner Kedar Jadhav enabled India to restrict Pakistan to a paltry 162. Bhuvneshwar returned figures of 3/15 while Jadhav got 3/23.

In reply, a quickfire half-century by Rohit Sharma and his 86-run opening stand with Shikhar Dhawan saw India comfortably overhaul the target with a whopping 21 overs to spare.

Rohit plundered 52 runs off 39 deliveries, hitting six boundaries and three sixes along the way.

Dhawan scored 46 runs off 54 balls before a loose shot to a Faheem Ashraf delivery handed an easy catch to Babar Azam at point.

Following the duo’s departure, Ambati Rayudu and Dinesh Karthick ensured that India crossed the line without losing any more wickets.

Earlier, the Pakistan batsmen never really found any momentum as they lost wickets at regular intervals. Pakistan got off to a slow start and could only manage 25/2 in the first 10 overs.

Bhuvneshwar sent back openers Imam-ul-Haq and Fakhar Zaman early on to leave Pakistan struggling with two wickets down after 4.1 overs with just two runs on the board.

Shoiab Malik and Babar Azam then got going well and negotiated the spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal — who went wicketless — and Kuldeep well. The pair stitched together an 82-run stand for the third wicket.

Left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav triggered Pakistan’s slide with a brilliantly executed wrong un’ that outfoxed Pakistan’s best batsman Babar Azam (47) when he was looking good along with Shoaib Malik (43).

Jadhav removed Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed (6) around the halfway mark of the first innings before accounting for Asif Ali (9) and Shadab Khan (8). That saw Pakistan, who were relatively comfortably placed at 85/2 at one point, collapsing to 121/7.

From then on, Pakistan could never recover as Mohammed Amir (18 not out) and Faheem Ashraf (21) joined hands for a 37-run partnership towards the end before Jasprit Bumrah (2/23) dismissed Ashraf and Bhuvneshwar and Bumrah got rid of Hasan Ali (1) and Usman Khan (0) respectively.

Malik hit the first six of the innings in the 13th over off Kuldeep and three overs later got a reprieve when Mahendra Singh Dhoni dropped him behind the stumps off Hardik Pandya.

Moments later, Pandya had to be stretchered off after suffering what turned out to be a lower-back injury during his follow through. Pandya clutched the floor and could not get up, needing attention from the medical team.

Just when the partnership seemed to be growing, Kuldeep once again underlined why he is a wily customer and can be unplayable at times with a ripper of a googly that pitched on middle and turned away from the batsman at the last moment to knock over his off-stump.

Malik then was dropped again at deep midwicket off Kuldeep as Bhuvneshwar failed to read a slog sweep in which the ball went high up in the air with the pacer misjuding the direction and over-running.

Captain Sarfraz, who had joined Malik at the crease, did not stay long as Manish Pandey took a superb catch at wide long-on off Jadhav.

Malik was run out soon after, failing to convert his start into a big one as the slide started for Pakistan.

Jadhav then added to his rivals’ misery by picking up the wickets of Asif Ali and Shadab Khan as Pakistan failed to string together partnerships.

Amir and Ashraf tried hard to get important runs towards the end but could not bat out the full 50 overs.

Brief scores:

Pakistan: 162 in 43.1 overs (Babar Azam 47, Shoaib Malik 43; Bhuvneshwar Kumar 3/15, Kedar Jadhav 3/23) lost to India: 164/2 in 29 overs (Rohit Sharma 52, Shikhar Dhawan 46) by eight wickets.

IANS

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