Raj, Author at Sportzwiki


Established sports writer across various global platforms


Video: Top 5 cricketers who look like footballers

Here is a list of Top 5 cricketers who look like footballers:


I am a big fan of Virat Kohli : Saurav Ganguly 

Just before the beginning of the India-South Africa series in October, the  former India skipper Dada, a.k.a Sourav Ganguly, on Tuesday wholeheartedly praised the Indian Test captain Virat Kohli for displaying a winning mentality and aggression on the cricket field.

Ganguly said, “I am a big fan of Virat Kohli. He is a captain who always wants to win matches on the field and I love that passion in him. I love the attitude and aggression in Kohli. He might lose sometimes and win sometimes, but you know that he is playing to win it”.

He further added, “It is also a proud moment for all to see him lead a side with such passion. I want Kohli to do better than me as a skipper. But his main challenge will be when India will tour abroad. Australia, England, South Africa will Test his captaincy. All the best to him for the South Africa series”. 

Although both sides have got really good and capable cricketers, this might prove to be another acid test for Team India as every cricket lover in this cricket-mad country is expecting our boys to defeat South Africans in our backyard. It is worthwhile to mention that India will play South Africa in three Twenty20 matches followed by five One-Day Internationals and four Test matches, starting in October.

Being one of the most sought after cricketer,  43-year-old Saurav Ganguly is all set to take over as the president of Cricket Association of Bengal after the sad demise of Jagmohan Dalmiya. He opined the visiting South African team are a strong side, but India will have an upper hand because of the home conditions.

He emphasized, “South Africa series will be a competitive series. They have a good team and India has recently played well in Sri Lanka. It is a long series. I always say that at home India is always a strong side. South Africa has bowling quality to take 20 wickets, India too has quality bowlers along with spinners in these spinning tracks. It will be a challenge for South Africa to hold on to their form for such a long tour”.

However, one will be able to assess the talent of test captain Virat Kohli only after adjudging his performance against Australia and England. But given the new role assigned to Dada, a few favorable words from him will certainly make a positive mark on vibrant Virat Kohli.

Ravindara Jadeja thrown out of team India

Well, as everyone was anxiously waiting to see the players chosen for the upcoming series against South Africa, for many of the fans of Ravindra Jadeja, the news is not at all good. The selectors have decided to drop him from the series. It is pertinent to add that of late Jadeja was not able to show any sign of recovery neither in his batting nor through his bowling. It is really a sad development as many of his fans were having high hopes in his capabilities as an all-rounder. In fact had he performed even just reasonably good, owing to his role as an all-rounder, he would have secured a place in the team India.

He had lost his self-esteem. Even his performance as a good fielder had been stalled for a while. Many of his fans do believe that he failed to perform well under the stressful conditions and had totally lost his rhythm and consistency. Does this suggest the end of Dhoni’s clout in BCCI? Only time will tell.

Here are the squads:

T20 Squad: Dhawan, Rohit, Kohli, Raina, Rahane, Rayudu, Dhoni, Binny, Ashwin, Axar, Harbhajan, Mohit, Mishra, Sreenath Aravind, Bhuvneshwar Kumar

India Squad for 1st 3 ODIs: Dhoni, Dhawan, Rohit, Kohli, Rayudu, Raina, Rahane, Binny, Ashwin, Axar, Gurkeerat, Mishra, Bhuvi, Mohit, Umesh

Virat Kohli Smashes Sachin Tendulkar's Record

The vibrant, captain of the Indian test team, Virat Kohli has recently won his first series as India captain, and immediately thereafter, the amazing effect of that reflected in his growing fan-base on Twitter that crossed 8 million followers on Sunday. “8 Million Followers! Absolutely Delighted. Thank You everyone for the immense love! #Grateful,” India’s new Test skipper tweeted after reaching his social media landmark.

It is worthwhile to mention that he has also crossed Sachin Tendulkar’s 7.73 million Twitter followers, knocking over at least one record of the batting maestro – albeit off the field. As expected by the millions of die-hard Indian cricket fans, the Kohli-led Team India came back to win the last two Tests on the tour of Sri Lanka to win the series 2-1, breaking a 22-year record on the Lankan soil.

We do hope to see him achieving new glories in future.

Magnificent bowling figures of 6-6-0-4 by Akshar patel    

This was definitely a wonderful bowling performance by left arm Indian bowler Axar Patel as the  South Africa ‘A’ second innings could last for just two hours and two minutes, as India ‘A’ scaled  a very memorable win in the second unofficial Test at the Wayanad Cricket Stadium  with their overall glorious gameplay.

The Indians won by an innings and 81 runs, after bowling the visiting side out for 76. With this feat, they have also won the series 1-0; as the opening Test was ended in a draw last week. The South African batsmen failed miserably to provide resistance against a varied spin attack on the fourth day of a track that proved favorable for the attacking Indian bowlers. No doubt that the wicket was difficult to bat, but perhaps the South Indian batsmen had lost their confidence and their morale was visibly low, in comparison to their talent.  

Mainly, four Indian spinners had given them a tough time. But primarily, it was left-armer Axar Patel who led the spin attack, as he finished with marvelous figures of four wickets for no runs from six overs. This particular stunning performance gave him match figures of nine for 92, apart from the unbeaten 69 he scored in the only Indian innings. Obviously he was the only choice for the Man-of-the-Match award; he was also the Man-of-the-Series, having taken five wickets in the first game.

On Friday his bowling was so good and was being so very fruitfully used by skipper Ambati Rayudu, who rotated his spinners around so effectively, that you would expect him to take wicket in every over; and he obliged, almost all the time. 

Another Indian, off-spinner Jayant Yadav also bowled impressively by picking up two wickets. Remaining Indian bowlers leg-spinner Karn Sharma, off-spinner B. Aparajith and seamer Shardul Thakur, shared a wicket each among them. It was delightful to see bowling of seamer Thakur who moved and bounced the ball enough to get noticed even in the great spin show.

But this event will always be remembered for the magnificent bowling spell of Axar Patel.

South Africa ‘A’ — 1st innings: 260.

India ‘A’ — 1st innings: Jiwanjot Singh c Vilas b Tsotsobe 52, Abhinav Mukund lbw b Piedt 72, B. Aparajith c Ramela b Piedt 34, Sheldon Jackson b Piedt 25, A. Rayudu c Bavuma b Piedt 71, Vijay Shankar c Vilas b Tsotsobe 21, Ankush Bains c Reeza Hendricks b Viljoen 35, Axar Patel (not out) 69, Jayant Yadav b Piedt 0, Karn Sharma (not out) 19; Extras (b-14, lb-3, nb-2): 19; Total (for eight wkts. decl. in 110 overs): 417.

Fall of wickets: 1-96, 2-168, 3-169, 4-224, 5-253, 6-309, 7-347, 8-348.

South Africa ‘A’ bowling: Tsotsobe 22-6-52-2, Viljoen 27-7-89-1, Bueran Hendricks 3-0-11-0, Piedt 45-4-191-5, van Zyl 11-2-33-0, Ramela 1-0-15-0, de Kock 1-0-9-0.

South Africa ‘A’ — 2nd innings: Reeza Hendricks b Axar 1, Stiaan van Zyl b Jayant 10, Gihahn Cloete c Bains b Thakur 4, Omphile Ramela c Vijay b Aparajith 7, Tema Bavuma b Axar 3, Quinton de Kock c Abhinav b Jayant 20, Dane Vilas c Rayudu b Axar 3, Dane Piedt c Vijay b Axar 5, Hardus Viljoen (not out) 9, Lonwabo Tsotsobe lbw b Karn 0, Bueran Hendricks (absent hurt); Extras (b-11, lb-2, nb-1): 14; Total (in 31.4 overs): 76.

Fall of wickets: 1-1, 2-20, 3-23, 4-33, 5-43, 6-48, 7-62, 8-67, 9-76.

India ‘A’ bowling: Thakur 8-2-20-1, Jayant 10-5-10-2, Axar 6-6-0-4, Karn 3.4-1-16-1, Aparajith 4-0-17-1.

Man-of-the-match & series: Axar Patel.

R Ashwin creates a new record

Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin took 5 wickets in the second innings of the second test between India and Sri Lanka at Colombo. With this, Ashwin has created a very special record as now Ashwin has become the highest Indian wicket taker in a series on Sri Lankan grounds in Test history.

It is pertinent to add that in this series, he averaged 16.35 and has grabbed 17 wickets at a real good economy rate of 3.19. Harbhajan Singh, who was the previous record holder, had in July 2008 taken 16 wickets in the Test series. R Ashwin’s haul of 5 wickets in the second innings happens to be his 12th time in his career.

Also, he became the sixth highest Indian to take 5 wickets in an innings most times. We wish to see many more glorious achievements from Ashwin.


Shikhar Dhawan: Another milestone achieved, only 3rd Indian opener to score Test centuries in consecutive innings overseas

What a splendid innings by sensational Shikar Dhawan! Shikhar Dhawan had scored 173 against Bangladesh at Dhaka and has again repeated his magic with another century against Sri Lanka in the ongoing first Test at Galle. While completing this exercise, Shikhar Dhawan has already emulated the feats of Sunil Gavaskar and Rahul Dravid to become the third Indian opener to score consecutive Test hundreds overseas. Although Dravid has scored consecutive centuries multiple times, but only one such instance was as India’s designated opening batsman.  Gavaskar, however has achieved the feat on as many as three occasions, two of which came overseas and one at home. 

Here comes a chart showing the details of all three:


Sunil Gavaskar

Sunil Gavaskar

Rahul Dravid

Shikhar Dhawan

Score 1






West Indies









Score 2






West Indies



Sri Lanka


Port of Spain




Score 3




West Indies



Port of Spain




Firebrand Ishant destroys Sri Lanka President’s XI top-order, takes 5 wickets for 5 runs

The Hindu is currently running a very interesting story about an amazing bowling performance by Ishant Sharma in the ongoing 3 day game in Colombo. Toda, during the second day, Sri Lanka’s President XI top-order had no way to deal with Ishant Sharma’s pace and swing on a humid day. A devoted Ishant Sharma spread terror on Friday in the Sri Lanka Board President’s XI camp after the Indian-medium pacer bagged five wickets to reduce the hosts to 35 for five at lunch on Day 2 of the three-day tour game in Colombo. As detailed in the story, Chasing the Indians first innings score of 351, the President XI top-order had no answers to Ishant’s (5-5) pace and swing on a humid day as the lanky bowler, who shared the new ball with Bhuvneshwar Kumar (0-5), struck twice in his very first over.

He removed both the openers, Dhananjaya de Silva and Kaushal Silva, for a duck. A determined Ishant kept up the good work by picking Upul Tharanga (0) in his next over and then got Lahiru Thiramanne (5) and Kusal Perera (0) on consecutive deliveries in his fourth over to be on a hat-trick. The score read 10 for five.

As expected, earlier in the day, starting on their overnight score of 314 for six, the Virat Kohli-led Indians managed to post 351 all out with Ajinkya Rahane top-scoring with 109 retired out. For Sri Lanka medium-pacer Kasun Rajitha bagged two more wickets this morning to return with impressive figures of 5-68.Continuing from the overnight, batsman Ravichandran Ashwin stuck around for his 23-run stay before being scalped by Rajitha, and Harbhajan Singh (15) and Amit Mishra (0) followed him soon after. Whatever the outcome might be, the comeback staged by Ishant Sharma will prove to be a big game changer in this tour.

Let us hope that Ishant will continue to spread his magic henceforth for Team India.

Scoreboard Indians 1st innings:

Lokesh Rahul c Gunathilaka b Nisala Gamage 43;

Shikhar Dhawan c Perera b Rajitha 62;

Rohit Sharma b Rajitha 7;

Virat Kohli c Siriwardana b Rajitha 8;

Ajinkya Rahane retired out 109;

Cheteshwar Pujara c Pathirana b Vandersay 42;

Wriddhiman Saha c Thirimanne b Vandersay 3;

Ravichandran Ashwin c Tharanga b Rajitha 23;

Harbhajan Singh b PLS Gamage 15;

Amit Mishra c Thirimanne b Rajitha 0;

Bhuvneshwar Kumar not out 9.

Extras (b 7, lb 10, w 4, nb 9) 30 Total (all out; 88.1 overs 351) (3.98 runs per over) Fall of wickets 1-108, 2-121, 3-130, 4-133, 5-267, 6-273, 7-314, 8-331, 9-331, 10-351


Vishwa Fernando 19-2-45-0,

Nisala Gamage 15-2-65-1,

Kasun Rajitha 17-2-68-5,

Jeffrey Vandersay 20-1-76-2,

Lahiru Gamage 13.1-2-66-1,

Milinda Siriwardana 4-2-14-0

Sri Lanka Board President’s XI 1st innings

R Dhananjaya de Silva b I Sharma 0;

Kaushal Silva lbw b I Sharma 0;

Lahiru Thirimanne* c Rahul b I Sharma 5;

Upul Tharanga lbw b I Sharma 0;

Milinda Siriwardana not out 23;

Kusal Perera b I Sharma 0;

Shehan Jayasuriya not out 7.

Extras 0 Total (5 wickets; 14 overs) 35 (2.50 runs per over) Fall of wickets 1-0, 2-1, 3-1, 4-10, 5-10


Bhuvneshwar Kumar 4-3-5-0,

Ishant Sharma 4-1-5-5,

Umesh Yadav 2-0-9-0,

Varun Aaron 2-0-8-0,

Ravichandran Ashwin 1-0-4-0,

Harbhajan Singh 1-0-4-0.

We will Get Sangakkara out as soon as possible: Virat Kohli

Ahead of the three match Test series against Sri Lanka next week, Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli looked confident when he spoke about the pressure of captaincy, his aggression and Kumar Sangakkara’s Farewell match in a Press Conference a day before taking the field against Sri Lankan Board President’s XI.

While speaking about captaincy, Kohli said that he will not mix batting and captaincy since both are different aspects of the game. He also rubbished the fact that there will be extra responsibility on him to do well as a captain. He said Captaincy and batting are two aspects that I will not try to mix. I bat in a very responsible way, so I dont think I need to change too much in that aspect. As far as my batting is concerned, I am not taking any added pressure. It has to be the collective effort of the whole batting group to make sure we get good, big totals for our bowlers to have a crack at the opposition. I would obviously like to do well on the tour but more importantly, what matters is how we play as a batting group and how we complement each other and play according to the situation and the sessions demand us to do.

Kohli also expressed his desire to repeat his heroics which he did against them in the past. He mentioned Sri Lanka as an opponent against whom he loves to score some runs and stressed the relations between both the countries’ boards.

Sri Lanka is one team we enjoy playing against each other. I remember in 2008-09 we played them so much we were actually thinking of buying houses here because we were here every three months! Sri Lanka has been one team which has been generous as far as our cricketing relations are concerned. I remember last year when we had a problem during the West Indies series, they generously agreed to step in. So, I am really grateful for that. Teams like them make international cricket more competitive and enjoyable as well, play with a lot of respect and dignity as well, he added.


Kohli also promised to play the same aggressive brand of cricket his played in Australia as the whole team believes in the mindset and will give their best in Sri Lanka. On a personal note, Kohli added that his aggression brings the best out of him.

Kohli quoted I know I have been criticised a lot for being aggressive at times, but that is something that has given me success as an individual and that is something that we believe in as a team as well. I am not saying the line of discipline has to be crossed, but in terms of body language and mindset, we would like to play cricket the way we did in Australia and, I felt it gave us a really good chance to be competitive against a really good team in their home. I dont find any need to change the way I played or play at the moment. The whole team believes in the same mindset and that is what we are going to do in the series.

According to Kohli, India will look to get Sangakkara out as soon as possible. Kohli hailed Sangakkara, who will playing his final test series in his International career by saying He deserves the best of farewells. If you ask any left-hander in the world who he idolises, Sangakkara has to be one of the top three people, most of the left-handers, batsmen in general, look up to. His record, in cricket, and Test cricket, has been magnificent. He has been such a match-winner for Sri Lanka. They are going to dearly miss him. I have had a great relationship with him as well. Whenever we have played against each other, we have had conversations and he is someone who will always talk about cricket and is always willing to help the younger players around. Great man, great cricketer.

Kohli concluded by saying As far as cricket is concerned, the plan is to get him out as soon as possible.

I intend to play in the 2019 World Cup: Sreesanth

Manormaonline.com is currently running a very interesting story regarding a statement issued by S Sreesanth, wherein he has expressed his desire to play in World Cup of 2019.

As per the story, Kerala speedster S Sreesanth on Monday said he wants to be part of the Indian Team for the 2019 World Cup to be held in England and Wales.

As highlighted in the article it appears that the former Indian cricketer is desperate to make a comeback to the Indian set up after being cleared of all charges in the IPL 6 spot-fixing scandal by a Delhi court last month. It has also been clarified that the BCCI is yet to revoke the life ban imposed on Sreesanth but the 32-year-old said he is prepared to wait till the board gives the green light.

 As per the story, Sreesanth had stated his desire to play the 2019 World Cup earlier as well. “I am not looking too far ahead. I had to wait patiently for two and a half years to get relief from a court in a case which I got involved for no fault of mine. I believe time heals everything. My dream is to play the 2019 World Cup for India and win it for our country,”

The Times of India quoted Sreesanth as saying. “That may sound unrealistic to you. But I have always believed in myself and my self-belief saw me becoming only the second cricketer from Kerala to play for India and win two World Cups.”

It is too early to comment on this development but certainly Sreesanth is following a very positive attitude, especially after getting support from the chief minister of his state.

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