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Srikkanth calls for competition between Bat and Ball in ODIs

The Master Blaster had taken note of the stats and said they would have probably scored more runs had the current rules applied during their playing days.

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Krishnamachari Srikkanth

New Delhi, May 16 : There have been quite some talk in recent times over the ODI rules which the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly have said work in favour of the batsmen and bowlers get a raw deal. While Tendulkar has said that using two new-balls in ODIs have meant that reverse swing has gone out of the game, Ganguly feels having two new balls during his time would mean scoring a boundary almost every over.

Speaking about the evolution of the ODI format, former India cricketer and chief selector Kris Srikkanth said on Star Sports’ Tamil show, Cricket Connected-Aatam Thodarattum: “When the competition between bat & ball is good, you’ll always have contests in whichever format – the 2019 Cricket World Cup was an example. In our days, boundaries used to be 80-90 meters, now it’s not more than 70-75 meters making life easier for the batsmen.”

In contemporary times, an ODI inning is played with two new white-balls from each end. When it comes to field restrictions, each inning is divided into three powerplays.

In the first powerplay from overs 1-10, only two fielders are allowed outside the 30-yard circle. In the next 30 overs, i.e. from 11-40, four fielders are allowed and in the last 10 overs, five fielders are allowed outside the 30-yard circle.

On Tuesday, the International Cricket Council (ICC) had reminded the fans about the great Indian duo of Tendulkar and Ganguly with a fact that they both stitched together 176 ODI partnerships throughout the course of their careers and scored 8227 runs at an average of 47.55.

The Master Blaster had taken note of the stats and said they would have probably scored more runs had the current rules applied during their playing days.

“This brings back wonderful memories Dadi. How many more do you think we would’ve been able to score with the restriction of four fielders outside the ring and two new balls?” tweeted Tendulkar.

Ganguly was quick to respond to Tendulkar and said: “Another 4000 or so…2 new balls…wow…sounds like a cover drive flying to the boundary in the first over of the game…for the remaining 50 overs.”

Off-spinner Harbhajan Singh suggested that ICC should amend the laws.

“At least few more thousands runs easily…such a bad rule this is…need few bowlers in ICC to keep the balance right between bat and ball…and games become more competitive when team scores 260/270 now days everyone scoring 320/30 plus and getting chased as well often,” Harbhajan wrote while replying on Tendulkar’s tweet.

Replying to this, Tendulkar on Wednesday said: “Couldn’t agree with you more Bhajji! Even I feel the rules and surfaces both need to be looked into.”

Watch Cricket Connected in your preferred language exclusively on Star Sports 1 Tamil, Star Sports 1 Telugu and Star Sports 1 Kannada every Saturday at 7pm.

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Two HI employees diagnosed with COVID-19, office to remain shut

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New Delhi, May 30 (IANS) Hockey India’s office will remain shut for two weeks after two of its staff tested positive for the coronavirus. 29 out of 31 employees were tested and apart from the two that tested positive, two more tested inconclusive and will be tested again.

“The two inconclusive are being retested again on Sunday (May) 31st at 11am,” International Hockey Federation (FIH) and Indian Olympic Association (IOA) President Narinder Batra said in a statement.

While one of the employees is from the accounts department, the other is a junior field officer, Batra further informed. Amongst the two inconclusive tests, one is a joint director and the other is a dispatch clerk.

“All 25 found negative have gone into home quarantine for 14 days to work from home,” said Batra. “The two found positive are also in strict home quarantine under medical monitoring. The two inconclusive are also in home quarantine under medical monitoring.”

Batra said that Hockey India President Mushtaq Ahmad informed him of the offices remaining shut for 14 days.

Batra further urged all National Sports Federations and State Olympic Associations to get their employees tested for the deadly virus “without any further delay.”

“This will help in giving confidence to us and all our stakeholders including our athletes,” he said.

More than 1.7 lakh confirmed COVID-19 cases have been reported so far in India while close to 5000 people have lost their lives.

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Virat Kohli only Indian in Forbes top 100 highest-paid athletes

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Virat Kohli

New Delhi, May 30 (IANS) Virat Kohli, captain of the Indian cricket team, remained the only Indian and sole cricketer to feature in the top 100 of highest-paid athletes of 2020 put forward by Forbes magazine.

With an estimated total earning of $26 million ($24m from endorsements and $2m from salary/winnings), Kohli has made a jump of more than 30 places from 2019 and is at the 66th spot in the list. In 2019 too, the ace batsman was the only Indian to feature in top 100 (at 100th place) with estimated earnings of $25 million.

Meanwhile, Swiss tennis legend Roger Federer became the first from the sport to top Forbes’ list of highest paid athletes. With an estimated $106.3 million earned over the past 12 months, the Swiss maestro edged out Portuguese football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo from the top spot.

The three athletes immediately below Federer are all football players with Ronaldo on second with estimated earnings of $105 million. Ronaldo’s arch rival Lionel Messi is third with an estimated $104 million while Brazil’s Neymar comes fourth with $95.5 million.

NBA stars came next in the list with Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James earning $88.2 million, Golden State Warriors all-star Stephen Curry with $74.4 million, Brooklyn Nets superstar Kevin Durant with an estimated $63.9 million.

Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka is the highest paid female athlete with $37.4 million. She however comes only 29th in the overall rankings. US tennis great Serena Williams comes 33rd with $36 million.

The factors that went into Forbes’ calculation were athletes’ revenue, including prize money, salaries, contract bonuses, endorsements, royalties, and appearance fees from June 1, 2019, until June 1, 2020.

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Australia suspends Olympic bid amid COVID-19 recovery

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Sydney, May 25 (IANS) Australia’s Queensland has suspended its bid to host the 2032 Olympics recently as the state government focuses on economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed the bid process had been paused, reports Xinhua news agency.

“It’s just on hold. I wouldn’t read too much into that,” Palaszczuk told reporters last weekend.

“We’re focused absolutely on the economic recovery at the moment.”

The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) said it fully supported the Queensland government’s position in placing the Brisbane 2032 candidature on hold.

AOC President John Coates said in a recent statement that meetings of the Olympic Candidature Leadership Group (OCLG) scheduled earlier this year were deferred, allowing governments to focus on dealing with COVID-19.

Coates said he’d proposed to OCLG members that the meetings would not proceed while all three levels of governments dealt with the pandemic.

He also told the AOC Annual General Meeting on May 9 that discussions with the IOC on the candidature would resume when appropriate.

“We all understand there are pressing issues of public health and community wellbeing for governments to address,” Coates said.

“The candidature will have its role to play in terms of jobs and growth in the Queensland economy once we have seen our way through the current crisis.”

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