Mitchell Santner Age, Biography, career, stats, networth, Ranking & News

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India National Cricket Team.
India National Cricket Team. Image Credits: BCCI
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India ‘Pressed The Panic Button’ Before The Toss Against New Zealand In 2021 T20I World Cup: Ajay Jadeja

Ajay Jadeja, the former India cricketer, lamented that Virat Kohli and co. “pressed the panic button” even before the T20 World Cup 2021 game against New Zealand. But, according to the former middle-order batsman Ajay Jadeja, New Zealand was dominant over the Indians much before the toss in Dubai, which was evident in the Men in Blue’s team selection.

With middle-order batsman Suryakumar Yadav unfit for the game, India brought dashing opener Ishan Kishan into the playing XI. However, he opened the innings with KL Rahul, while Rohit Sharma moved down to number three and captain Virat Kohli pushed himself down to number four.

Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan - SPORTZPICS
Suryakumar Yadav and Ishan Kishan – SPORTZPICS

Ajay Jadeja: India Pressed The Panic Button Before The Toss As Was Evident In Team Selection

Ajay Jadeja opined that India’s surprising moves clearly indicated they were unsure of their plans. Ishan Kishan opened the batting along with KL Rahul while Rohit Sharma dropped to No. 3, but even that move didn’t work. Ishan Kishan scored just 4 runs from 8 balls, while Rohit Sharma made 14 from as many balls in India’s below-par total of 110 for 7 in 20 overs.

“New Zealand were dominant on India even before the game started. India pressed, what I could call the panic button, before the toss with the team they picked. Then, losing the toss was also a big setback. Obviously, that wasn’t in India’s hands. But the openers (Ishan Kishan and KL Rahul) who walked in were a surprise. There were more surprises at numbers three (Rohit Sharma) and four (Virat Kohli) as well,” Ajay Jadeja elaborated.

Ajay Jadeja added: “By the time New Zealand came out to bat, nothing was left in the game. There were only faint hopes, which also disappeared the way they bowled in the first six overs.”

Ajay Jadeja
Ajay Jadeja (Photo- Twitter)

The 50-year-old also lashed out at the Indian think-tank for playing “musical chairs” with the opening slot. He described the top-order batters as the star performers in any T20 line-up.

Ajay Jadeja added: “The simplest funda of T20 is that the top order should be your strongest suit. The best players bat at the top because there are only 120 balls. If you are unsure about it, then your starting on the wrong foot. The debate over the last few days was over Hardik Pandya’s bowling and whether Shardul Thakur should play. But they lost the plot with the confusion in the top order, which is the star power of any batting side in T20s.”

Ishan Kishan, KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, and Virat Kohli all perished cheaply against New Zealand as India lost their first four wickets with only 48 on the board within 10 overs. Their net run rate was below 5, and the pressure to not lose wickets besides accelerating run-rate was a tough ask for India’s next in line batsmen.

They ended up posting 110 for 7 in stipulated 20 overs, in which they didn’t effectively score runs in nine of those overs (54 dot balls). Worse, they were just able to hit a single boundary between overs 8 and 15 when two spinners-Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner, were in operation.

Virender Sehwag : Only Positive Was Hardik Pandya Bowling

According to former India opener Virender Sehwag, it is difficult to find any positive from the team’s lacklustre showing against New Zealand. He pointed out that while Hardik Pandya’s bowling was a good sign, it came a little too late as New Zealand was already in course for a resounding win.

Virender Sehwag said while reflecting on India’s loss against New Zealand: “The only positive for India was that Pandya bowled. But it really won’t matter whether he bowls or not or even doesn’t play in the next few games.”

Virender Sehwag
Virender Sehwag (Image Credit: Twitter)

Rather surprisingly, Hardik Pandya came on to bowl against New Zealand. But by the time he took the ball, only the formalities remained as the Kiwis were in total control. Hardik Pandya conceded 17 runs in 2 overs.

Zaheer Khan (Photo credit should read Marty Melville/AFP/Getty Images)
Zaheer Khan (Photo credit should read Marty Melville/AFP/Getty Images)
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Indian Team Has To Find Motivation After Faltering Against Pakistan And New Zealand, Says Zaheer Khan

Zaheer Khan, the former India pacer, believes it is imperative for Indian players to find the motivation to do well at this critical juncture of the T20 World Cup 2021, despite successive defeats in the tournament.

Zaheer Khan was speaking on the post-match show after India’s embarrassing eight-wicket defeat to New Zealand on Sunday (October 31). The ex-cricketer revealed that it becomes really difficult when one has to rely on the results of other matches for a spot in the semi-final, while also looking to do well in the remaining fixtures.

Zaheer Khan. Image-Sportstar
Zaheer Khan. Image-Sportstar

Zaheer Khan Drew Parallel To 2007 ODI World Cup, Where India Was Knocked Out In The Group Stage

Zaheer Khan also drew parallels with India’s 50-over World Cup campaign of 2007, where team India was knocked out in the group stage itself after losing to Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. In the ongoing 2021 T20I World Cup, Virat Kohli, and his men. They still have an outside chance of going forward into the tournament, but their qualification depends on a number of external factors.

Zaheer Khan stated that he was part of the Indian side that went through a similar situation as they were eliminated from the group stage during the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies after a shocking loss to Bangladesh in their opening clash.

“When you are in this kind of a scenario, I could only think of that example of 2007’s 50-over world cup in the West Indies. We lost that first game and after that you know the whole sort of permutation combinations and just a miracle which you are hoping for which will get us through and control the thing which is in your hand which is to to go out there and put up your best show.”

India's Virat Kohli. Credit: Reuters Photo
India’s Virat Kohli. Credit: Reuters Photo

Zaheer Khan added: “You know you are you are one of the better teams and you just have faltered in the first couple of games. But you have to somehow find that inspiration that motivation you’re still representing your country at the highest level.”

The Virat Kohli-led side failed to make an impact yet again in the ongoing T20 World Cup 2021 as they once again lost a one-sided fixture at the global event. However, the Kiwi bowling attack overpowered the star-studded Indian batting order and restricted them to a sub-par score of 110. New Zealand made easy work of the paltry 111 run target with more than 5 overs to spare as Daryl Mitchell’s 49 and Kane Williamson’s unbeaten 33 steered the Kiwis home.

Zaheer Khan: Indian Batting Unit Led Them Down In Both Matches

New Zealand then chased down the total comfortably with eight wickets to spare to secure a thumping win. On the other hand, India is still in search of their maiden win after 2 defeats from 2 matches and is languishing in the penultimate position in the points table in Group 2.

Zaheer Khan reckons that while many fans and experts predict India will do well in the tournament, their batting unit has let them down. The 2011 ODI World Cup winner put emphasis on creating a platform for the bowlers by posting an imposing total on the board. However, the batsmen Ishan Kishan (4 off 8 balls), Rohit Sharma (14 off 14 balls), KL Rahul (18 off 16), Virat Kohli (9 off 17), Rishabh Pant (12 off 19) failed when it mattered most.

India managed 110 for 7 in 20 overs, in which they didn’t effectively score runs in nine of those overs (54 dot balls). Worse, they were just able to hit a single boundary between overs 8 and 15 when two spinners, Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner, were in operation.

India cricket team. Photo: @BCCI
India cricket team. Photo: @BCCI

“Indian team walked in to the tournament as one of the favourites. But they couldn’t get going with the bat and that has been the story so far. The batting firepower of the Indian team has not been able to put up that total. Batting first or second does not matter, it is about scoring runs consistently and creating a platform,” said Zaheer Khan

India will next be seen in action on Wednesday, November 3, when they take on Afghanistan at the Shiekh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. It remains to be seen if a change in the venue will change the side’s fortunes or not.

Inzamam-ul-Haq | AFP
Inzamam-ul-Haq | AFP
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Inzamam-ul-Haq Shocked By India’s Batting Show Against New Zealand

Inzamam-ul-Haq, the former Pakistan captain, expressed his surprise over India’s lacklustre performance against New Zealand yesterday (October 31). The Men In Blue’s misery against the Blackcaps in ICC events prolonged last night. Their chances of making it into the semifinals of the ongoing T20I World Cup took a serious hit with a heavy 8-wicket loss in Dubai.

Inzamam-ul-Haq claimed that the contest between India and New Zealand was one of the biggest ones in the tournament. However, he failed to understand how India stitched together such a poor performance right from the word go.

Inzamam-ul-Haq JEWEL SAMAD / AFP
Inzamam-ul-Haq JEWEL SAMAD / AFP

Inzamam-ul-Haq Shocked By The Demoralized Manner In Which India Played

The much-valued Indian batting lineup failed to accelerate the run rate and kept on losing regular wickets, managing only 110 in the stipulated 20 overs. India was never in the contest, with the new-look top-order in the absence of Suryakumar Yadav struggling in the powerplay and subsequent wickets falling at regular intervals.

New Zealand made easy work of the paltry 111 run target with more than 5 overs to spare as Daryl Mitchell’s 49 and Kane Williamson’s unbeaten 33 steered the Kiwis home.

While speaking on his YouTube channel, Inzamam said: “This match was the biggest one after India and Pakistan. Even bigger than Australia vs England. I’m shocked by the manner in which India played. They were absolutely demoralized. I could not understand how such a big team took so much pressure.”

 

KL Rahul And Rohit Sharma (Image Credit: Twitter)
KL Rahul And Rohit Sharma (Image Credit: Twitter)

While he played his first 2021 T20I World Cup match, Ishan Kishan opened the batting along with KL Rahul while Rohit Sharma dropped to No. 3, but that move didn’t work. Ishan Kishan scored just 4 runs from 8 balls, while Rohit Sharma made 14 from as many balls in India’s below-par total of 110 for 7 in 20 overs.

Ravindra Jadeja top-scored with 26 not out off 19 balls, while Hardik Pandya made 23 off 24 balls while the rest batsmen all failed to fire. The Indian top-order and experienced batsmen KL Rahul (18 off 16), Virat Kohli (9 off 17), Rishabh Pant (12 off 19) failed when it mattered most.

Inzamam-ul-Haq : NZ Spinners Are Not World Class

Inzamam-ul-Haq failed to understand how the Indians were not able to score more runs off the two Kiwi spinners. Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi ran a tight ship and claimed combined figures of 8-0-32-2. The leg-spinner was awarded man of the match for his display that included the wickets of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. The latter scored only 9 off 17 balls before losing his wicket to Ish Sodhi. Trent Boult also returned with figures of 3/20.

Inzamam-ul-Haq added: “These NZ spinners are good, but not world-class. The Indian batsmen were not even able to score singles off them. Kohli’s strength is playing spin and even he was not able to get a single.”

Ish Sodhi
Ish Sodhi. (Photo Source: Twitter)

India managed 110 for 7 in 20 overs, in which they didn’t effectively score runs in nine of those overs (54 dot balls). Worse, they were just able to hit a single boundary between overs 8 and 15 when two spinners, Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner, were in operation.

The Indian batsmen never got the scoreboard ticking. Boundaries and strike rotations were hard to come by in the middle overs, leaving India in a tough spot. India needs to win all of their remaining fixtures and hopes for a few other fixtures to go their way to secure a spot in the semifinals of the T20 World Cup 2021.

Mohammad Azharuddin
Photo Credit: Web.
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Entire Indian Team And Coaches Failed In 2021 T20I World Cup After India Loses First 2 Matches: Mohammad Azharuddin

Mohammad Azharuddin said that while Indian captain Virat Kohli will be getting much of the criticism for losses against Pakistan and New Zealand, India’s performance in the 2021 T20I World Cup thus far has to be blamed on his teammates and the rest of the coaching staff as well.

India captain Virat Kohli may be coping criticism for the team’s pathetic performance thus far in the 2021 T20I World Cup, but his teammates and the coaching staff also deserve blame, said former skipper Mohammad Azharuddin. An eight-wicket defeat to New Zealand on Sunday served a blow to India’s chances of making the semi-finals of the tournament.

Mohammad Azharuddin played 99 Tests for India. Twitter
Mohammad Azharuddin played 99 Tests for India.- Twitter

Mohammad Azharuddin: Entire Indian Team And Coaches Failed, But Virat Kohli Is Facing Criticism

India had earlier lost to Pakistan by 10 wickets in what was their first match of the tournament after Shaheen Shah Afridi picked 3 scalps, and Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan ensured Pakistan reach the 152 runs target without losing a wicket. Mohammad Azharuddin was India’s skipper in the 1996, and 1999 ODI World Cups blamed India’s entire team and coaches for 2 successive losses in the 2021 T20I WC.

“Virat Kohli is facing criticism but it’s the entire team and the coaches that have failed and not just one man. It turned out to be a scary Halloween for Indian fans. #INDvsNZ #T20WORLDCUP,” said Mohammad Azharuddin in a tweet.

India had to replace middle-order batsman Suryakumar Yadav with Ishan Kishan due to the former’s back injury while all-rounder Shardul Thakur came in for the out-of-form Bhuvneshwar Kumar, but both flopped with bat and ball in Dubai.

Ishan Kishan opened the batting along with KL Rahul while Rohit Sharma dropped to No. 3, but even that move didn’t work. Ishan Kishan scored just 4 runs from 8 balls, while Rohit Sharma made 14 from as many balls in India’s below-par total of 110 for 7 in 20 overs. Ravindra Jadeja top-scored with 26 not out while Hardik Pandya made 23 while the rest all failed to fire.

India managed 110 for 7 in 20 overs, in which they didn’t effectively score runs in nine of those overs (54 dot balls). Worse, they were just able to hit a single boundary between overs 8 and 15 when two spinners-Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner, were in operation.

Virat Kohli holed out to Trent Boult at long-on off the bowling of Ish Sodhi after scoring 9 of 17 balls. Trent Boult (3/20) and Ish Sodhi (2/17) shared five Indian wickets while conceding just 37 runs in 8 overs.

Daryl Mitchell Scores 49 As New Zealand Win By 33 Balls To Spare

New Zealand, the bogey team for India at global events over the years, embarrassed Virat Kohli’s men, who didn’t even show any stomach for a fight after their skipper lost an important toss.

Daryl Mitchell hooks one away Getty Images
Daryl Mitchell hooks one away Getty Images.

During the run chase, Daryl Mitchell made a fluent 49, and skipper Kane Williamson remained not out on 33 as New Zealand triumphed with 8 wickets in hand and 33 balls to spare to bounce back from the defeat by Pakistan in their tournament opener.

Virat Kohli. Credit: Reuters Photo
Virat Kohli. Credit: Reuters Photo
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New Zealand Played With Virat Kohli’s Ego To Dismiss Him In T20I WC 2021: Harbhajan Singh

Harbhajan Singh believes the New Zealand spinners played with Virat Kohli’s ego to dismiss him in the T20 World Cup 2021 encounter between the two sides.

Virat Kohli managed just nine runs off 17 deliveries as Team India was restricted to a meager score of 110/7 in their allotted 20 overs. The Indian skipper, who batted at no.4, was kept under a tight leash by the Kiwi spinners throughout his knock.

Harbhajan Singh (Photo Credits: Twitter)
Harbhajan Singh (Photo Credits: Twitter)

Harbhajan Singh: New Zealand Played With Virat Kohli’s Ego

Harbhajan Singh highlighted that the Kiwis had played with the Indian batting mainstay’s psyche, while he reflected on Virat Kohli’s dismissal during a discussion on Star Sports.

“They played with Virat Kohli’s ego. They said that they will not give him the runs, if you come at the start and play the big shot, it’s fine but they will not give the singles. When you hurt a big player’s ego by not giving the singles, they play a shot like Virat Kohli played today,” Harbhajan Singh said.

The former India spinner added that Virat Kohli was forced to play a shot that was against his grain.

“Virat Kohli’s shot is not his natural game. He tried what he doesn’t do. If he had hit the same ball over cover or played after stepping out, I feel that would have been a better option,” Harbhajan Singh said.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli (BCCI)

Harbhajan Singh opined that Virat Kohli’s inability to rotate the strike led to his dismissal.

“Normally, Virat Kohli’s singles cannot be stopped. But today, Virat Kohli did not have the space to take singles. Credit to New Zealand’s field settings and the way Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi bowled, they didn’t give the easy singles, because of that they forced Virat Kohli to play that shot which he never plays,” Harbhajan Singh said.

Virat Kohli didn’t hit a single boundary during his knock. He failed to open his account in the first five deliveries he faced and didn’t score a run in 10 of the 17 balls he played overall.

Irfan Pathan: New Zealand Bowled Very Well Not Giving Virat Kohli Any Pitched Up Deliveries

Irfan Pathan showered praise on the New Zealand spinners-Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi, for not feeding Virat Kohli in his strong areas.

“They bowled very well. You talk about the line but the control that was seen even in the length, they didn’t give Virat Kohli any pitched up deliveries because they know that Virat Kohli doesn’t play the sweep against deliveries that are further away, doesn’t use his feet also too much.”

Irfan Pathan
Irfan Pathan

Virat Kohli fell while trying to push the accelerator pedal on the first ball after the drinks interval. He holed out to Trent Boult at long-on off the bowling of Ish Sodhi after scoring 9 of 17 balls.

India’s chances of making the semi-finals of the 2021 T20 World Cup is doubtful after their comprehensive defeat at the hands of New Zealand on Sunday by 8 wickets. Spinners Ish Sodhi (2/17) and Mitchell Santner (0/15) were responsible as their eight overs cost a mere 32 runs while also securing the wickets of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. Trent Boult (3/20) and Ish Sodhi (2/17) shared five Indian wickets while conceding just 37 runs in 8 overs.

Chasing a below-par 111, Daryl Mitchell (49) and Kane Williamson (33*) helped New Zealand chase down the target in just 14.3 overs to register a commanding 8-wicket victory against India in Dubai.

New Zealand 111 for 2 (Mitchell 49, Bumrah 2-19) beat India 110 for 7 (Boult 3-20, Sodhi 2-17) by eight wickets.

Michael Vaughan. (Image Credits: Getty)
Michael Vaughan. (Image Credits: Getty)
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Michael Vaughan Labelled New Zealand As Best All Format Cricket Team

Michael Vaughan, the former England captain, has labelled the New Zealand side as the “best all format” cricket team in the world.

Michael Vaughan’s remarks came after New Zealand defeated India by eight wickets in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup on Sunday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

Michael Vaughan (Image Credit: Twitter)
Michael Vaughan (Image Credit: Twitter)

Michael Vaughan: New Zealand Are The Best All Format Cricket Team In The World

India’s chances of making the semi-finals of the 2021 T20 World Cup is doubtful after their comprehensive defeat at the hands of New Zealand on Sunday by 8 wickets. Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner were responsible as their eight overs cost a mere 32 runs while also securing the wickets of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli.

“No one will admit it including themselves as they are so humble but #NZ are pound for pound the best all-format Cricket team in the World at the moment … #Fact #T20WorldCup,” Michael Vaughan tweeted.

Ish Sodhi is mobbed by his team-mates after getting the wicket of Virat Kohli AFP/Getty Images
Ish Sodhi is mobbed by his team-mates after getting the wicket of Virat Kohli AFP/Getty Images.

Earlier this year, New Zealand had defeated India in the finals of the World Test Championship, and the Kiwis had also made it to the finals of the 2019 50-over World Cup. Trent Boult and Ish Sodhi starred with the ball before Daryl Mitchell smashed 49 off 35 to help New Zealand defeat India by eight wickets in the ongoing T20 World Cup.

India Managed Only 110/7 In The Allotted 20 Overs

India was restricted to 110/7 in the allotted twenty overs against New Zealand. None of the Indian batsmen was able to stay at the crease for long, and what followed was a lacklustre performance—Ravindra Jadeja top-scored for India with an unbeaten 26.

Chasing a below-par 111, Daryl Mitchell (49) and Kane Williamson (33*) helped New Zealand chase down the target in just 14.3 overs to register a commanding 8-wicket victory against India in Dubai. Opting to bowl, Kiwi bowlers clicked in unison to restrict India to just 110 for 7. Trent Boult (3/20) and Ish Sodhi (2/17) shared five Indian wickets while conceding just 37 runs in 8 overs.

Daryl Mitchell hooks one away Getty Images
Daryl Mitchell hooks one away Getty Images

Virat Kohli-led India will next take on Afghanistan on Wednesday at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. With Pakistan all but assured of one semi-final spot and New Zealand joining Afghanistan for the other one, India’s campaign is now at risk of coming to an earlier close than expected.

New Zealand 111 for 2 (Mitchell 49, Bumrah 2-19) beat India 110 for 7 (Boult 3-20, Sodhi 2-17) by eight wickets

New Zealand head cricket coach Gary Stead. (Photo| EPS)
New Zealand head cricket coach Gary Stead. (Photo| EPS)
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Gary Stead Criticizes ICC After They Barred Adam Milne From Playing Against Pakistan

Gary Stead, Black Caps head coach, has criticized the International Cricket Council after they barred Adam Milne from playing in New Zealand’s opening match of the Twenty20 World Cup against Pakistan. The Black Caps put in a request with the ICC’s technical committee for travelling reserve standby pacer Adam Milne to join their 15-man squad on the morning of their opener against Pakistan in Sharjah, after star seamer Lockie Ferguson was ruled out of the tournament with a calf tear.

MRI scans taken just hours before their first game revealed the extent of Lockie Ferguson’s injury, but with Adam Milne having trained with the squad as injury cover, and presenting as a like-for-like replacement for Lockie Ferguson, the Black Caps were hopeful he would get clearance in time to be selected in the starting XI to face Pakistan, the game which they eventually lost.

The Black Caps tried to bring in Adam Milne as an injury replacement for Lockie Ferguson, but couldn’t get it approved in time for their T20 World Cup opener.
The Black Caps tried to bring in Adam Milne as an injury replacement for Lockie Ferguson, but couldn’t get it approved in time for their T20 World Cup opener. ANDREW CORNAGA/PHOTOSPORT

Gary Stead Tried Hard To Get Adam Milne Against Pakistan Which Didn’t Happen As It May Have Made A Difference To The Game Against Pakistan

The Black Caps applied with an independent doctor’s report to the technical committee, but after initially thinking they had received clearance, word came through 90 minutes before the match that Adam Milne would not be available. Gary Stead was disappointed by the process and felt Adam Milne could have made a difference in his side’s five-wicket defeat to Pakistan.

“We tried pretty hard to get across the line with the ICC our replacement player, but it wasn’t to be. That was really disappointing for us because Adam Milne is someone waiting in the wings as a like-for-like replacement,” said Gary Stead.

“You can’t say you know for sure if it would have made a difference in the game, but for us, on that wicket, pace bowling and hitting the pitch as hard as what Adam does or Lockie does would have been a difference, we think. I think Haris Rauf showed for Pakistan the difference that it can make,” said Gary Stead.

Gary Stead - Getty Images
Gary Stead – Getty Images

“What we were told is they don’t give clearance on the same day, so we’ll question that reason and continue to seek clarification on that.”

Pakistan were in control of the game ever since they won the toss and chose to bowl. Eleven of the 20 overs they bowled went for six runs or fewer. Haris Rauf began the game with a 149 kph yorker that literally took Martin Guptill out of the game. Three of his four wickets came through slower deliveries. It was a sign of his evolution and an understanding of the conditions in Sharjah.

Gary Stead: New Zealand Weren’t Going To Play Ish Sodhi For Pitch Assisting Seamers More

The lack of clarity had an impact on team selection, with the Black Caps initially planning to play Mitchell Santner as their only spinner, leaving out leg spinner Ish Sodhi in favour of a seam-heavy attack.

“You always plan to have the changes like this, the most unsettling thing for us is we probably changed the team three times today on that decision. Originally we thought we’d got the clearance for Adam to play, but then it’s been turned down. So we were questioning it with the ICC as much as an hour and a half out from the game and arriving there.”

Martin Guptill - AP
Martin Guptill – AP

Adding to Gary Stead’s frustration, the clearance for Adam Milne to play came through 40 minutes after the match concluded, and he indicated that Adam Milne would come right into the starting XI for what is looming as a crucial clash against India on Monday morning.

“When you look at how we structure our side, we always try to have that pace dominance where we can, and we certainly lacked that.”

The Black Caps training staff will also be keeping a close eye on Martin Guptill over the next few days, with the opener suffering a toe injury when batting, and later having to come off the field in the second innings. Gary Stead noted the 35-year-old was in discomfort after the game but was hopeful he’d improve overnight.

Pakistan 135 for 5 (Rizwan 33, Asif 27*, Sodhi 2-29) beat New Zealand 134 for 8 (Mitchell 27, Rauf 4-22) by five wickets

Rashid Khan
Rashid Khan. Image Credits: Twitter
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Rashid Khan Denied He Ever Said He Will Marry If Afghanistan Win 2021 T20I WC

Rashid Khan insists his mind is occupied by the forthcoming T20I World Cup and not wedding bells as the leg-spin wizard looks to inspire Afghanistan at the Twenty20 global showpiece.

Still only 23 years of age, Rashid Khan is key to his nation’s hopes of a first-world title and a potential triumph that would deliver a rare bout of good news for his home country, especially after the militant group Taliban’s takeover. However, Rashid Khan said that speculation over his private life in the run-up to the tournament, currently underway in Oman and the UAE, will not derail his ambitions.

Rashid Khan
Rashid Khan (Photo Credit: Twitter/@cricketworldcup)

Rashid Khan Denied He Ever Said He Will Marry If Afghanistan Win Their First- 2021 T20I World Cup

Rashid Khan, who made his Afghanistan debut when he was a teenager- 17, is one of international cricket’s most in-demand players. He has already played 51 T20Is and more than 280 games in the format for franchises around the world.  A lucrative career has seen him ply his trade in England, Australia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, South Africa, and, of course, the IPL in India, where he has been a regular for Sunrisers Hyderabad since 2017.

He denied he ever said: “I will marry when Afghanistan win a World Cup.”

“Actually, I was so shocked when I heard this because, to be honest, I never made a statement that I will marry once I win the World Cup,” said Rashid, whose family lives in Nangarhar in the eastern part of Afghanistan.

Rashid Khan, Sunrisers Hyderabad, IPL 2021
Rashid Khan, Sunrisers Hyderabad, IPL 2021[photo: Twitter]

“I just said that in the next few years I have more cricket and three World Cups (the 2021 and 2022 Twenty20 World Cups and the 50-over World Cup in 2023) so my focus will be on cricket rather than on getting married.”

He has 95 wickets in T20 internationals with an average of just 12.63 and in 2020 was voted the ICC’s Cricketer of the Decade in the format. Initially, ACB named Rashid Khan as their captain for the T20 World Cup 2021.

Rashid Khan soon came up with a tweet stating that he will be leaving the captaincy. Post that, ACB announced that Mohammad Nabi will be the captain of the team. Rashid Khan decided to step down from captaincy after the spinner claimed that his “consent” was not obtained before announcing the squad.

Rashid Khan Feels It Will Be A Spinners World Cup

On the low, slow wickets of the Gulf, the spinners will be key contributors, according to the leg-spin wizard. Rashid Khan, who will be playing his second T20 World Cup, said that the spinners are always “effective” on the slow pitches at three venues in the UAE, where the Super 12s, as well as the semi-finals and final, will be played.

Leg-spinner Rashid Khan turned in a few memorable match-winning efforts in SRH’s journey to the finals of the 2018 edition. He took 21 wickets and emerged as the second-highest wicket-taker in that edition. He has 93 scalps in 76 IPL games averaging a mere 20.55 at an economic rate of 6.33- the lowest economy rate ever in IPL history.

“I think it will be a spinners’ World Cup,” said Rashid.

“The wickets here are mostly very good for spinners, so I think that’s the main reason most of the teams have more spinners in their attack.”

India has packed four slow bowlers in their squad with Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Varun Chakravarthy, and Rahul Chahar, while England has Adil Rashid, Moeen Ali, and Liam Livingstone. Defending champions, the West Indies have Akeal Hosein, Hayden Walsh, and Roston Chase. Chris Gayle can also turn his arm over.

Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin AFP
Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin AFP

Pakistan can call on Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, and Imad Wasim as frontline spinners. Veterans Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik can also give the ball a tweak. New Zealand has Ish Sodhi, Mitchell Santner, and Todd Astle. Australia, yet to win a T20 World Cup, will look to Adam Zampa and Ashton Agar. Rashid Khan is not Afghanistan’s only front-line spinner — there is also Mujeeb Ur Rahman and skipper Mohammad Nabi.

“What I noticed during the Indian Premier League (the conclusion of which was also played in the UAE) was that wickets were good but there was not that much spin,” said Rashid.

“But I think the more we play in this World Cup we might see wickets which are a bit different and the more you play on these tracks it becomes slower and slower and they will be handy for spinners.” Rashid refused to predict any favourites for what is the seventh edition of the World Cup.

“Well it’s T20 and anyone can beat anyone on the day,” said Rashid, who stepped down from the captaincy ahead of the event over not being consulted in squad selection.

“We have a mixture of both experienced and young players and most importantly it’s quite balanced with a few all-rounders which make the side very balanced, especially in T20 when you have more of that all-round option.”

Afghanistan is placed in Group 2 of the World Cup with India, Pakistan, New Zealand, and two qualifiers in the Super 12 stage, which begins on Saturday.

Suresh Raina (Image Credit: IPL)
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Stephen Fleming Unconcerned About Suresh Raina’s Poor Form In IPL 2021

Stephen Fleming, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) head coach, has played down concerns over the form of senior batsman Suresh Raina as IPL 2021 approached the business end of the tournament.

CSK became the first team to qualify for the play-off stages of IPL 2021 following their ninth win of the campaign, but the form of experienced Suresh Raina has dipped ever since his fifty in the tournament opener back in April.

Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina (Image Credit: Twitter)

Stephen Fleming: CSK Has A Clear Role For Suresh Raina

Since his knock of 36 balls 54, Suresh Raina has added 103 more runs in 9 innings, but an unconcerned Stephen Fleming said he expects the southpaw to improve his performance as the tournament progresses.

“We have a pretty clear role for him. He has got an optimal time. We want him to bat and we’ve afforded the luxury of a player coming out and being aggressive. So, just getting the timing right without managing the batters,” Fleming said at the virtual post-match conference.

Stephen Fleming and MS Dhoni (Photo Source: Twitter)
Stephen Fleming and MS Dhoni (Photo Source: Twitter)

“We value his experience and everything has got a part to play in the middle. Suresh is an experienced player who has earned a bit of leeway and as the tournament goes on, his performance will improve.”

In 7 matches so far, the left-handed batsman scored 157 runs in 11 games at a below-par average of 19.62. Suresh Raina has also hit a half-century in one game. He has played exactly 204 IPL games, scored 5525 runs in IPL, and is the 4th highest run-getter in IPL history.

MS Dhoni-led CSK produced a convincing performance against bottom-ranked Sunrisers Hyderabad to maintain their remarkable consistency this season and sailed into the playoffs on Thursday with a six-wicket win at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium.

Stephen Fleming: CSK Has A Chance To Manage The Workload Of Players

Despite registering four wins on the trot, Stephen Fleming said he is not big on momentum, which he believes can go quickly as it comes, and with the play-off berth sealed, the coach said CSK has a chance to manage the workload of players. The likes of Robin Uthappa, Narayan Jagadeesan, Krishnappa Gowtham, and Mitchell Santner may get chances in inconsequential games.

“I am not big on momentum. Momentum can go as quickly as you have it. We don’t really talk about that. What we have probably been afforded is that we can manage workloads of players a bit better,” Stephen Fleming said.

“We have got a day and travel to Abu Dhabi and a day and then a game. The opportunities for guys who are on the fringe… we have afforded that luxury now. But we won’t be too experimental,” Stephen Fleming added.

Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)
Chennai Super Kings (Image Credit: Twitter)

The three-time IPL champions, who had a season to forget in 2020 as they failed to qualify for playoffs for the first time, have 18 points on the back of nine wins from 11 matches and are the first team to secure a spot in the playoffs. Stephen Fleming said they finished well after a poor start last season and took confidence out of it to emerge stronger in this IPL 2021 campaign.

Bravo back to his best, bowling at death outstanding, says CSK coach Fleming “I think I mentioned it at that time. We were really proud of the way we finished. The way we won the last four games in a row and started to get a little bit of rhythm together. In the first half of the tournament, a number of things went wrong,” Fleming said.

“Our form and confidence were really low but the way we finished was really encouraging and gave us the look of what we could be. We sat down and analyzed to get competitive and took confidence out of it and knew it was just a couple of positions that might make a better-balanced side.”

“In fact though it was a bad year, we were only a win away from a semifinal. Just about trying to create a balanced side that would suit us. It was just about creating an environment that was positive and making sure there was no doubt,” he concluded.

CSK will look to carry on the winning momentum when they next take on Rajasthan Royals at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Saturday (October 2).

ICC T20 World Cup
ICC T20 World Cup Image Credits: Twitter
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New Zealand Squad, Schedule, Date, Time, And Venue For 2021 T20I World Cup

New Zealand led by Kane Williamson will be a team to watch out for. The Kane Williamson-led New Zealand always enters the big ICC events with the tag of the underdog and does something stunning to earn praise from the cricket fans and experts. They have been consistently performing well for the last few years in limited-overs cricket.

The seventh edition of the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 is all set to begin on October 17 and the final of the tournament will take place on November 14. Notably, the tournament was shifted to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and OMAN due to the Covid-19 scare in India. However, BCCI still holds hosting rights.

Bangladesh vs New Zealand
Bangladesh vs New Zealand. Image Credits: Twitter

New Zealand Reached The 2015 And 2019 ODI World Cup Finals And Was Crowned WTC 2021 Winners

New Zealand reached the finals of the 50-over World Cup in 2015 and 2019. Also in the longest form of the game, they have been performing exceptionally well. Recently, they participated in the finals of ICC World Test Championship (WTC) 2021 against Virat Kohli-led India and they won the match to be crowned the inaugural champions. New Zealand is placed in Group B of the tournament, alongside India, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.

Notably, Team New Zealand won four back-to-back T20 international series heading into the T20I series against Bangladesh. However, they had a terrible run in the 5-match T20I series against the Bangla Tigers. In the first match, they got bowled out on 60 and lost the game by 7 wickets. Meanwhile, in the 2nd T20I, they lost the game by 4 runs. Overall they faced a T20I series loss against Bangladesh by 3-2.

New Zealand's Kane Williamson celebrates with the trophy and teammates after winning the final of the ICC World Test Championship. Photograph: John Sibley/Reuters
New Zealand’s Kane Williamson celebrates with the trophy and teammates after winning the final of the ICC World Test Championship. Photograph: John Sibley/Reuters

So far the Blackcaps haven’t won the ICC T20 World Cup trophy. However, looking at the team’s recent performance there is no doubt that they have full potential to win the T20 World Cup 2021. Also, new faces like Devon Conway and Kyle Jamieson are expected to play a huge role for Kiwis in the T20 World Cup 2021. Meanwhile, veterans like Kane Williamson, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, and Martin Guptill will provide much-needed experience to the side.

New Zealand’s complete squad for ICC T20 World Cup 2021:

T20 World Cup New Zealand Image Credit: ICC Twitter
T20 World Cup New Zealand Image Credit: ICC Twitter

Kane Williamson (c), Todd Astle, Trent Boult, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Kyle Jamieson, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Tim Seifert (wk), Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Adam Milne (injury cover).

Like England, New Zealand also does not have a good track record of the ICC T20 or ODI World Cups. Apart from the ICC Champions Trophy and inaugural WTC 2019-21, they have never won an ICC event. That is why the team is considered one of the unluckiest teams of the ICC cricket world cup history.

The group features an all-star bowling group – Ish Sodhi, Mitchell Santner, and Tim Southee alongside the likes of Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson, Kyle Jamieson, and Todd Astle. Seamer Adam Milne has been selected as the 16th man and will join the team for the tournament but can only be called upon to replace a player in the squad in the event of an injury.

New Zealand’s complete schedule for ICC T20 World Cup 2021

Tuesday, October 26, 2021: vs Pakistan, at Sharjah Cricket Stadium, in Sharjah. (7:30 PM IST)

Sunday, October 31, 2021: vs India, at Dubai International Cricket Stadium, in Dubai. (7:30 PM IST)

Wednesday, November 3, 2021: vs Qualifier (B1), at Dubai International Cricket Stadium, in Dubai. (3:30 PM IST)

Friday, November 5, 2021: vs Qualifier (A2), at Sharjah Cricket Stadium, in Sharjah. (3:30 PM IST)

Sunday, November 7, 2021: vs Afghanistan, at Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi. (3:30 PM IST)

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