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IPL 2018: Wanted to put up a good show in front of Warne, says Kuldeep

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Kolkata, May 16: It was the presence of legendary leg-spinner Shane Warne in the Rajasthan Royals dug-out that inspired left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav to produce his career-best performance in the Indian Premier League (IPL) for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Eden Gardens here.

“I’m always a big fan of his (Warne). He has been my idol. I always get a different kind of motivation when I play in front of him. I wanted to put up a good show in front of him,” Kuldeep told reporters at the post-match press conference.

Kuldeep returned figures of 4/20 as KKR defeated the Royals by six wickets to inch closer to a play-off berth on Tuesday evening.

Kuldeep was having an ordinary IPL till Tuesday night with just nine wickets from 12 outings at an economy rate of around 8.5.

But India’s premier tweaker first got rid of Royals skipper Ajinkya Rahane with a googly and then dismissed dangerman Jos Buttler.

In his next two overs, Kuldeep got Stuart Binny stumped with another googly before accounting for the wicket of Ben Stokes.

“I discussed with him after the match. I have already started my planning for the upcoming England series. But it was a brief conversation. Maybe after the IPL, I will again get a chance to talk to him,” Kuldeep said.

Kuldeep is part of India’s one-off test squad against Afghanistan in Bengaluru next month. India then travel to England for a long tour.

Asked about his sub-par bowling until Tuesday night, Kuldeep said his defensive mind set against Mumbai Indians in their previous game in Kolkata may have cost him dear.

“Maybe my mind set became a bit defensive and thought of restricting the flow of runs. But I’m not the kind of a bowler who stops the flow of runs. If I attack at the batsmen, most of the times I get wickets. My strength is to keep looking for wickets,” he said.

Kuldeep said Buttler’s wicket was special for him as it proved to be the turning point of the game.

“If he had played for 10 more overs, the score would have been 170-180. Everything went according to my plan. For me it was the best wicket,” he said.

KKR will head to Hyderabad on Thursday to take on already-qualified Sunrisers in the last round-robin league match on May 19.

“We have to win the next match straightway. That’s important for us, then only we stand a chance to qualify,” he signed off.

IANS

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IPL-Playoffs: Rashid dedicates performance to blast victims in Afghanistan

Rashid Khan’s virtuoso display with bat (10-ball 34) and ball (3/19) helped Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) beat Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by 13 runs to book their place in the final of the Indian Premier League (IPL) where they will meet Chennai Super Kings on Sunday in Mumbai.

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Kolkata, May 25 : Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan on Friday dedicated his man of the match award to those who lost their lives in a blast during a cricket game in his hometown earlier this month.

Rashid Khan’s virtuoso display with bat (10-ball 34) and ball (3/19) helped Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) beat Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) by 13 runs to book their place in the final of the Indian Premier League (IPL) where they will meet Chennai Super Kings on Sunday in Mumbai.

“I want to dedicate this award to those who lost their lives in a blast during a cricket game in my hometown back home,” Rashid, 19, said at the post match presentation ceremony.

At least eight people were killed and dozens wounded in a series of blasts during a cricket match in eastern Afghanistan earlier this month.

Coming to the match, Rashid helped struggling Hyderabad post 174/7 by scoring bulk of the 50 runs in the last three overs which proved to be the difference at the end as he took three wickets which included the wickets of Chris Lynn (48), Robin Uthappa (2) and Andre Russell (3) to help his team cross the line.

“It was much-needed for me, wanted to give my 100 per cent in all departments,” Rashid said on his performance.

So far, Rashid has taken 21 wickets in 16 matches.

Rashid revealed he started his career as a batsman.

“Focus was to just believe in my skills. I was happy with the batting, it was needed in the end. I started my career as a batsman, I believe in my skills and wanted to finish off well.

“I just tried to pick the lengths, the focus was to play straight. That was the plan from the senior players. Fielding is one department where you can’t make excuses, compared to last year, I’ve worked really hard in my fielding.

“If I can’t contribute with bat or ball, I’m always looking forward to contribute on the field. Modern cricket demands that. I’m working hard on that,” he signed off.

An elated Sunrisers skipper Kane Williamson said that Rashid will now be well rested so that he is in fine fettle for the all-important summit clash.

“Rashid was brilliant, but he’s got another game day after. We’ll keep him wrapped up,” Williamson said.

“Exciting, must-win game, great to go through to the final, important to move on. As a team we fight till the last ball, showed that today. Someone like Rashid is the perfect example of that. Outstanding talent, but a team effort. Lot of the guys chipped in, great team fighting effort which is the attitude we want to see.

“One thing we didn’t change was our balance, Saha was injured but he came back… was nice to have his experience. Every one of the guys have played a huge part, whether on or off the field,” he added.

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Injured Virat Kohli ruled out of Surrey county stint

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New Delhi, May 24: Indian skipper Virat Kohli has been ruled out of his much-anticipated first English county stint due to a neck injury.

Confirming the news, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in a press release, said the 29-year-old suffered the neck injury while fielding during his franchise Royal Challengers Bangalore’s (RCB) Indian Premier League penultimate clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru.

“Team India Captain Virat Kohli suffered a neck injury while fielding during Match 51 of the IPL between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Sunrisers Hyderabad on 17th May 2018 at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru,” the release said.

“Kohli, who was scheduled to play for Surrey CCC in the month of June, has been ruled out from participating,” the release added.

“This decision was taken following assessments by the BCCI Medical team, subsequent scans, and a specialist visit.

The country’s cricket board further confirmed that Kohli would remain in India to undergo a period of rehabilitation before he would have a fitness test in Bengaluru on June 15 ahead of series against England.

“The BCCI Medical Team is confident that Kohli will regain full fitness ahead of India’s upcoming tours to Ireland and England,” the BCCI said.

The injury concerns were raised after Kohli visited Hinduja hospital on Wednesday afternoon to visit a leading orthopaedic.

Earlier this month, Kohli had signed a deal with top English county side Surrey ahead of England Test tour later this summer and was all set to miss his country’s inaugural Test match against Afghanistan, starting in Bengaluru on June 14.

Kohli had penned down the deal with Surrey in order to prepare himself for India’s blockbuster five-match Test series against England later this year, beginning at Edgbaston on August 1.

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PM Modi accepts Virat Kohli’s fitness challenge with a promise

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New Delhi, May 24: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday accepted Indian skipper Virat Kohli’s fitness challenge and promised to share his own fitness video soon.

PM Modi took to Twitter to respond to Kohli’s challenge, writing, “Challenge accepted, Virat! I will be sharing my own #FitnessChallenge video soon. @imVkohli #HumFitTohIndiaFit”

Besides PM Modi, Virat Kohli had also tagged wife Anushka Sharma and former Indian cricket captain MS Dhoni in the campaign started by Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore earlier this week.

Two days after Rajyavardhan Singh urged Indians to get fitter as part of #HumFitTohIndiaFit campaign, Virat took up the challenge and posted a fitness video of his own.

Sharing the video on twitter, Kohli is seen performing an exercise for the lower abdomen, calling it his “favourite core workout”.

Kohli’s video comes in response to Rathore’s earlier tweet, in which the Union Minister challenged the Indian captain, 2012 London Olympic medallist Saina Nehwal and Bollywood superstar Hrithik Roshan to join in.

Hrithik Roshan replied to Rajyavardhan Rathore with a video of him riding a bicycle and said that this was how he travelled to work every day. “This initiative makes me so proud! Bravo. #HumFitTohIndiaFit #FitnessChallenge this is how I commute to my office every day. Sitting static in a car is such a waste. Walk, cycle, jog, feel the earth, feel India get FIT!” tweeted Hrithik.

Kohli is not the first to answer the challenge. Rathore’s initiative has garnered the positive response from a plethora of Indian personalities, including Saina Nehwal, actor Manoj Tiwari, Salman Khan, Tiger Shroff, wrestler Babita Phogat, para-badminton player Manasi Joshi and many more, all of whom have shared their fitness videos on twitter.

The Fit India movement was initiated by PM Modi in March. He even talked about the movement in his Mann Ki Baat radio talk in April and released a 3D-animated video of himself depicting the ‘Trikonasana’ posture.

“Last month, I had urged people to participate in the Fit India Movement. I am glad with the overwhelming support for the movement. Many people have written to me about fitness, their experiences and what they do. I want to urge everyone to exercise for a healthy lifestyle,” he had said on the monthly programme.

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