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IPL: Narine, Lynn star in KKR’s resounding win over RCB

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Kolkata Knight Riders

Bengaluru, May 7 : Chris Lynn and Sunil Narine’s big hitting helped Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) sweep aside out-of-sorts Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) by six wickets in a rain-interrupted Indian Premier League (IPL) match at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium here on Sunday.

It was a surprise when Narine came out to open the batting with the fit-again Lynn instead of in-form skipper Gautam Gambhir but the West Indian who has been doing the job at the top of the order for KKR this season vindicated the team management’s faith in him.

Pursuing RCB’s 158/4, KKR romped home with 159/4 in 15.1 overs riding on a 105-run stand by Narine (54; 17b 6×4 4×6) and Lynn (50; 22b 5×4 4×6) in just 6.1 overs at a run rate of 17.02.

Narine registered the fastest half-century in the IPL, reaching the 50-run-mark in just 15 balls.

KKR are now second in the points table with 16 points from 12 outings. They play Kings XI Punjab in Mohali before ending the league engagements at home against already-qualified Mumbai Indians.

The morning showed the day as far as KKR’s chase was concerned with Lynn — back from a shoulder injury — smoking Aniket Choudhary for two fours and a six on the trot.

Sreenath Aravind was taken for 26 runs in one over as the maverick pair took the game away from RCB in the Powerplay itself.

Narine was the first to depart, top edging a Aniket Choudhary delivery which wicketkeeper Kedar Jadhav collected safely.

Lynn was castled by Pawan Negi (2/21) who also accounted for the wicket of Colin de Grandhomme (31; 28b 1×4 2×6) while Yuzvendra Chahal sent Gambhir (14; 16b; 0x4 0x6) back in the hut.

Yusuf Pathan (0 not out) and Manish Pandey (4 not out) saw the out the win for the men in purple.

Earlier, Travis Head’s pyrotechnics towards the end of the innings helped Royal Challengers Bangalore erase a top order collapse to post 158/6 in 20 overs

Mandeep Singh (52; 43b 4×4 1×6) also played well to graft the innings after the big three of Chris Gayle, Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers failed to contribute.

Head (75 off 47 not out), who is playing in place of Shane Watson, and Mandeep stitched together a 71-run stand for the fourth wicket to stem RCB’s rot and at the end it was about the Australian’s big hitting.

While Mandeep took time to steady the ship and pace his innings to perfection, Head saved his shots for the last smashing Ankit Rajpoot and Chris Woakes for two sixes in consecutive overs to up the run rate. In the last over, Head tonked Umesh Yadav (3/36) for two sixes and a four on the trot to take away 21 runs.

Put in to bat, Gayle played a lazy shot first ball of the match for Gambhir to complete the simplest of catches at short cover off Umesh’s bowling.

Mandeep looked to take on Chris Woakes, opening the bowling in place of injured Nathan Coulter-Nile, hitting the England pacer for a four and a six off back-to-back deliveries.

Kohli’s (5; 9b; 0x4, 0x6) poor form continued unabated as the India captain could not make the most of his reprieve when Piyush Chawla grassed him at mid-off to get out in the very next ball. He fell to Umesh’s slower delivery with the ball striking his back foot for a plumb leg before wicket decision.

Narine sent De Villiers (10; 8b 2×4 0x6) back in his first over with the out of form South African shuffling across the crease to miss the ball completely and losing his stumps as a result.

Mandeep and Head took almost nine overs to engineer a 50-run stand for the fourth wicket. There was a period where RCB could not find the fence for five overs before Head pulled Ankit Rajpoot behind square leg for four.

Play was stopped for around 38 minutes after which Mandeep brought up his half century but the interruption in their partnership saw Narine taking the prized wicket of Mandeep.

Kedar Jadhav holed out to Umesh who ran from long off to pouch the ball to help Chris Woakes grab a wicket. Negi added just five runs to the total before falling to Umesh in the final over.

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Our style of play is non-negotiable: Mumbai City boss Lobera

It also means that Jahouh will now miss Mumbai’s next match against the reigning ISL Shield winners FC Goa.

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Sergio Lobera

Panaji: After Sergio Lobera’s reign at Mumbai City got off on the wrong foot on Saturday with a 1-0 loss to NorthEast United, the Spaniard said that his attack oriented possession-based game was non-negotiable.

“Our style of play is non-negotiable. I used some players in different positions from what they are used, for example Adam in right wing but I believe he has the experience to adjust. We have to improve a lot of course,” Lobera told media after the match.

Mumbai went in with two strikers up front with Adam Le Fondre playing as a make shift right winger along with Bartholomew Ogbeche. The Englishman created some good chances in the first half but a red card to midfield mainstay Ahmed Jahouh and Rowllin Borges conceding a penalty in the second meant at Mumbai ended up losing the match 1-0.

It also means that Jahouh will now miss Mumbai’s next match against the reigning ISL Shield winners FC Goa.

“Today (the red card) was a big problem for us. It changed the game, we were playing with 10 men and missing a very important player. But for the next game, I have 28 players, I am very happy with my squad. Just one player is not an excuse for losing the next game,” said Lobera.

“We need to improve, we had a short pre-season and have a short time between games. But it is my job to improve the level of the team and I am very positive that it is possible for the next game.”

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ATP Finals: Thiem beats Djokovic to reach 2nd successive final

He will now face either Daniil Medvedev or Nadal in the final which is scheduled to be played on Sunday.

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Dominic Thiem

London: Dominic Thiem outlasted world no.1 Novak Djokovic in a gripping last-four clash to reach his second successive final at the ATP Finals in the O2 Arena in London. Thiem, ranked third behind Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, won the match 7-5, 6-7(10), 7-6(5).

Thiem broke serve at 5-5 in the first set and sealed it with an ace. Djokovic, however, grinded his way to victory in the second set, denying Thiem the win despite the Austrian getting four chances to seal the game.

The third game was also pushed to a tiebreaker, which was started by Thiem but he went on to lose the next three points. He however roared back to win the next six points and while Djokovic saved a fifth match point, Thiem got the job done at the next opportunity.

He will now face either Daniil Medvedev or Nadal in the final which is scheduled to be played on Sunday.

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Even our reserves are quick, you don’t see this kind of attack: Shami

The biggest advantage is that I can now prepare for the upcoming series without any pressure. There is no burden on me. I am very comfortable at the moment.

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mohammed-shami

New Delhi, Nov 21: The depth in the fast bowling department and the camaraderie that the players share between them are among the biggest reasons why India’s pace battery is rated as one of the best in the world, according to leading pacer Mohammed Shami.

Shami and Jasprit Bumrah are considered the core of a plethora of fast bowlers who have been integral to India’s success in Test cricket in recent years.

“Our fast bowling group can bowl at 140 kmph plus and you need that kind of pace in Australia,” Shami said in an interview on the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) official website.

“Even our reserves are quick, you don’t get to see that kind of an attack. We thrive on challenges. We have the experience. We have variety in our spin bowling attack too. We can bowl fast but we are all different, our skills are different. India have quality batsmen and we bowl at them in the nets. We don’t look at names, we focus on our skills. You can be a world-class batsman, but one good ball will still get you out,” Shami said.

India will be banking on Shami and Co. during their upcoming tour of Australia. The 30-year-old pacer comes into the series after a successfull Indian Premier League in which he took 20 wickets in 14 matches.

“My performances for Kings XI Punjab in IPL has given me a lot of confidence and put me in the right zone. The biggest advantage is that I can now prepare for the upcoming series without any pressure. There is no burden on me. I am very comfortable at the moment. I had worked hard on my bowling and my fitness in the lockdown. I knew that IPL would take place sooner or later and I was preparing myself for it,” he said.

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