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Third T20I: Rohit, Shami shine as India beat NZ in Super Over

For the Indians, their failure to grab the opportunity with the bat was followed by some poor show on the field as even someone like Ravindra Jadeja dropped a catch, not to mention quite a few misfields.

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Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma

Hamilton, Jan 29 : Hitman Rohit Sharma hit a brilliant unbeaten 15 (including two sixes) in the Super Over as India chased down New Zealand’s score of 17 to win the third T20I at Seddon Park and take an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match T20I series on Wednesday.

New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson followed up his excellent 95 with an unbeaten 11 in the Super Over, but it just wasn’t enough as Rohit and K.L. Rahul (5*) took Tim Southee to the cleaners.

This after the game was tied as India pacer Mohammed Shami came up with a classic last over just when it looked like Williamson would take the Kiwis home with a batting master-class.

It is for a reason that the Indian bowling attack is considered one of the best in the world and with Jasprit Bumrah having a one-off bad day, Shami rose to the challenge and bowled a brilliant last over as New Zealand failed to score the 9 runs required despite Ross Taylor starting the over with a six.

While Shami dismissed Williamson off the third ball of the over, he cleaned up Taylor (17) off the last ball with the Kiwis needing one run to win.

Earlier, Williamson single-handedly took the game away from the Indians in the 17th of the innings – Bumrah’s third. The Kiwi skipper picked 14 from the over to bring the required rate below the 10-run mark.

Going into the 17th, New Zealand needed 43 off 24 balls. But at the end of the over, the Kiwis needed 29 from the last three overs. With Ross Taylor giving Williamson company, it was all about not doing anything reckless for the hosts.

For the Indians, their failure to grab the opportunity with the bat was followed by some poor show on the field as even someone like Ravindra Jadeja dropped a catch, not to mention quite a few misfields.

Williamson took full advantage as he ensured that he not only held one end up, but also hit the timely boundaries to keep the hosts in the game. But him getting out with the Kiwis needing 2 runs brought the visitors right back in the game as Shami bowled a couple of dot balls before sending Taylor’s stumps for a walk in the park off the last ball.

Bowling first, New Zealand paceman Hamish Bennett took three wickets to put Rohit Sharma’s half century in the background as the hosts restricted India to 179/5 in 20 overs.

Bennett (3/54) grabbed two wickets in three balls to remove Rohit, who slammed a 40-ball 65 including six fours and three sixes, and Shivam Dube (3) early on and then claimed the prized scalp of skipper Virat Kohli (38) in the 19th over as India never really got going after the initial flourish.

Manish Pandey’s 14-run cameo along with Ravindra Jadeja’s 10 off five helped India reach a defendable total in the end. This after the tourists were off to a blazing start with in-form K.L. Rahul and Rohit looking to take the Kiwi bowlers to the cleaners.

India raced to 69/0 in the first six overs and it looked like New Zealand’s ploy of asking India to bat first to blunt their strength of chasing would fall flat.

But Colin de Grandhomme’s first over of the series broke the 89-run stand as Rahul was caught at point by Colin Munro in the ninth over as he was undone by the extra bounce on offer.

All-rounder Shivam Dube was promoted up the order to No.3 to continue the onslaught but a double strike by Hamish Bennett in the 11th over meant both Rohit and Dube (3) were sent back in quick succession.

While Rohit holed out to Tim Southee at long on, Dube sliced a back of a length delivery to Ish Sodhi at third man.

Kohli took a bit of time to get going as the Kiwis held the upper hand before the Indian captain smashed a six and a four off Mitchell Santner in the 15th over which yielded 13 runs as India moved to 127/3.

Shreyas Iyer looked to heap more misery on Santner as he hit a six off his first ball in the 17th over, but the left-arm spinner had the last laugh on his home ground as he changed the pace to outsmart the batsman who was stumped by Tim Seifert.

Kohli tried to change gears but was caught at extra-cover by Southee off Bennett. India, though, made some ground in the final over as Pandey and Jadeja hit a six each to take 18 off Southee’s over.

Brief Scores: India: 179/5 in 20 overs (Rohit Sharma 65; Hamish Bennett 3/54); New Zealand: 179/6 (Kane Williamson 95); Super Over: New Zealand: 17/0; India: 20

India

COVID-19: PM Modi urges sports personalities to keep spreading awareness

In fact, Kohli recently came out with a video where he requested everyone to stay indoors and help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

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New Delhi, April 3 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday spoke to eminent sports personalities that included the likes of BCCI President Sourav Ganguly, Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar, badminton world champion P.V. Sindhu and chess legend Viswanathan Anand as the country fights the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to IANS, sources in the know of developments said that the Prime Minister spoke to them about ways in which there can be more awareness creation and more efforts made to reach every citizen in the country so that the directives issued by the health department is followed by one and all.

“The Prime Minister had an interaction with not just cricketers, but also sports personalities from other fields. The basic idea was to ensure that they can then go ahead and pass on the message of staying safe and staying indoors to the masses. The PM acknowledged the contribution the sportspersons have made in spreading awareness and said that this is a battle that the country has to fight together and no better way than to get sports personalities to reach out to their fans and followers further,” the source said.

The sports personalities have been already doing their bit as they have not only donated funds to help fight the pandemic, but have also spread awareness messages on their social media platforms.

In fact, Kohli recently came out with a video where he requested everyone to stay indoors and help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

“Hello, I am Virat Kohli. Today I am speaking to you not as an India player, but as a citizen of the country. What I have seen in the last few days — people moving in groups, not abiding by curfew rules, not following lockdown guidelines — it shows that we are taking the fight very lightly. But this fight is not as easy as it looks or feels.

“I wish to request everyone to please maintain social distancing and follow it. Also we should follow the directives given by the government and just for once think how you would feel if due to your negligence someone in your family gets affected by the virus. Please follow the experts as they are working very hard. It will only be successful when we follow our duties rather than going out in groups and breaking rules. This for me is an act against the country’s well-being. So now, I along with all of you wish to see things improve and please follow the directives of the government. Jai Hind!”

A list of 49 names from all prominent sports were compiled for the interaction with PM Modi. They are: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Cricket), Virat Kohli (Cricket), Rohit Sharma (Cricket), Mamatha Poojary (Kabaddi), Sourav Ganguly (Cricket), Sachin Tendulkar (Cricket), Virender Sehwag (Cricket), Mohd Shami (Cricket), KL Rahul (Cricket), Cheteshwar Pujara (Cricket), Yuvraj Singh (Cricket), Zaheer Khan (Cricket), PT Usha (Athletics), Yogeshwar Dutt (Wrestling), Bajrang Punia (Wrestling), Vinesh Phogat (Wrestling), PV Sindhu (Badminton), Mary Kom (Boxing), Hima Das (Athletics), Viswanathan Anand (Chess), Rani Rampal (Hockey), Deepika Kumari (Archery), Mirabai Chanu (Weightlifting), Neeraj Chopra (Athletics), Sharad Kumar (Para Athletics), Apurvi Chandela (Shooting), Manu Bhaker (Shooting), Tarundeep Rai (Archery), Bhaichung Bhutia (Football), Sardara Singh (Hockey)Achanta Sharath Kamal (Table Tennis), Amit Panghal (Boxing), Gagan Narang (Shooting), Anju Bobby George (Athletics), Rohan Bopanna (Tennis), Ankita Raina (Tennis), Sai Praneeth (Badminton), Srihari Natraj (Swimming), Harmeet Desai (Table Tennis), Abhishek Verma (Shooting), Avinash Sable (Athletics), KT Irfan (Athletics), Lovlina Boroghain (Boxing), Simranjeet Kaur (Boxing), Jeremy (Weightlifting), Bhavani Devi (Fencing), Pramod Bhagat (Para Badminton).

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Warne names Akram, Fleming as captains of his greatest Pakistan, New Zealand XIs

The pace battery consists of Akram, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis while off-break bowler Saqlain Mushtaq and leggie Mushtaq Ahmed completed the spin department.

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Shane Warne

New Delhi, April 2 : Former Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne on Thursday picked the greatest Pakistan and New Zealand XI he played against during his playing days.

Warne picked Wasim Akram as the captain of the Pakistani XI. “Akram was the best bowler that I saw, his skill with the ball was exceptional,” Warne said on Instagram.

He picked Saeed Anwar to open the innings alongside Aamir Sohail. The middle order comprises of Mohammad Yousuf, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Younis Khan with Moin Khan as the wicket-keeper.

The pace battery consists of Akram, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis while off-break bowler Saqlain Mushtaq and leggie Mushtaq Ahmed completed the spin department.

As for the greatest New Zealand XI, the spin legend picked Stephen Fleming as the skipper. In fact, Warne said that Fleming was the best captain he played against. Alongside Fleming, Warne picked the likes of Shane Bond, Daniel Vettori, Brendon McCullum, Danny Morrison and Martin Crowe in his best New Zealand XI.

Warne’s greatest Pakistan XI: Saeed Anwar, Aamir Sohail, Mohammad Yousuf, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Moin Khan (wk), Wasim Akram (c), Saqlain Mushtaq, Mushtaq Ahmed, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis.

Warne’s greatest New Zealand XI: John Wright, Brendon McCullum, Andrew Jones, Martin Crowe, Stephen Fleming (c), Nathan Astle, Chris Cairns, Daniel Vettori, Shane Bond, Simon Doull and Danny Morrison

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Enjoy batting with Dhoni, ABD the most: Virat Kohli

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Dhoni Kohli BCCI

Mumbai, April 2 : M.S. Dhoni and AB de Villiers are the two batters Virat Kohli loves batting with the most, the Indian captain said on Thursday during a social media interaction with former England batsman Kevin Pietersen.

“I enjoy batting with those who can run fast with me. So it has to be MS when we play for India together and AB when we play in the IPL for RCB. We don’t even talk while we are batting,” Kohli said during an Instagram live hosted by Pietersen.

Pietersen had previously hosted India’s limited-overs vice captain Rohit Sharma at a time all are indoors due to the 21-day lockdown in the country to battle coronavirus pandemic.

Kohli also spoke about the Indian cricket team being one of the best fielding sides in the world and how he got that culture in the side.

“I was lucky to be in the centre of transition. I got to see what we were lacking and what the world was doing and we needed to catch up. So I was lucky to play with plyeers who were on same page,” Kohli said.

The pair also went down memory lane to talk about their days playing together for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in 2009 and 2010.

“Right from 2009-10 we had amazing fun at RCB. We hit off well from Day 1. You came in as the big KP a star. We had a gun team with Kallis, Boucher, Anil Kumble, Rahul Dravid,” Kohli said.

RCB have reached three finals but have never won an IPL. Kohli, as captain of the side, said he feels they deserved a title but added he is not obsessed to win one with the franchise.

“We have reached three finals but haven’t won. We deserve to win a title. At RCB, we get talked about so much as we had stars. The more you think (about winning the IPL), the more it keeps running away from you. There have been added pressure lately but we need to just enjoy and not take pressure.”

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