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England vs New Zealand

India cricket team. Photo: @BCCI
India cricket team. Photo: @BCCI
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India Will Return To England Next Summer To Play 3 ODIs And 3 T20Is

India will return to England next summer to play six white-ball games, the ECB confirmed on Wednesday (September 8). While announcing the schedule for their 2022 home summer, the ECB also confirmed that they will be hosting New Zealand and South Africa too apart from India.

Even though England hosted New Zealand for a couple of Tests earlier this year (New Zealand won 1-0) in June before the World Test Championship final, they will host them again for three Tests this time to kickstart their summer. This series involving the hosts and the defending World Test champions will come under the 2021-23 World Test Championship cycle.

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

India Will Return To England To Play 3 T20Is And 3 ODIs In July 2022

Following the conclusion of the three Tests, England will play 12 limited-overs games in the month of July. The T20I series against India kicks off on July 1 at Old Trafford in Manchester following which the teams move to Edgbaston and Southampton for the next two games. The T20I series will be followed by a three-match ODI series that concludes at Lord’s on July 14.

India will play three T20Is and as many ODIs next English summer.
India will play three T20Is and as many ODIs next English summer. © Getty

Joe Root’s Test side begins their series against New Zealand at Lord’s on June 2 before heading to Trent Bridge (June 10-14) and Headingley (June 23-27). A white-ball series against India follows in July, with three T20s taking place before three ODIs from July 1 to 14. England then welcomes South Africa for the biggest series of the summer, featuring three ODIs, three T20Is, and concluding with three Tests.

England Will Also Play New Zealand In 3 Tests Starting June And A Full Fledged All Format Against South Africa From July-August

England will then host South Africa for a full series from July 19 that will see the visitors play three ODIs, three T20Is, and three Tests. England’s home summer will conclude with the final Test against South Africa scheduled to begin on September 8 at The Oval. The Test series will carry more significance since the teams will be vying for vital WTC points. The ECB also confirmed that the T20 Blast Finals Day will be staged at Edgbaston on July 16.

ECB chief executive Tom Harrison Getty Images
ECB chief executive Tom Harrison Getty Images

“It has been a scintillating summer of cricket and so good to see crowds backpacking out venues later this summer,” ECB Chief Executive Officer, Tom Harrison, said. “For next summer, I am pleased to be able to confirm three high-quality men’s international touring teams for 2022, starting with a three-Test LV= Insurance Series against World Test Champions New Zealand.”

Tom Harrison is the chief executive officer of the England and Wales Cricket Board. He confirmed the home schedule for the men’s team for 2022. Tom Harrison also confirmed that discussions are in progress regarding England Women’s home schedule as well as the 2022 domestic season.

“We also look forward to India returning for two white-ball series before we host South Africa for what promises to be hard-fought series across three formats”

Lord’s will host the first Test (17-21 August) against South Africa before the series moves to Edgbaston (August 25-29) and The Oval (September 8-12).

England’s 2022 home summer schedule

vs New Zealand

Match Date Venue
1st Test June 2-6 Lord’s, London
2nd Test June 10-14 Trent Bridge, Nottingham
3rd Test June 23-27 Headingley, Leeds

vs India

Match Date Venue
1st T20I July 1 Old Trafford, Manchester
2nd T20I July 3 Trent Bridge, Nottingham
3rd T20I July 6 Ageas Bowl, Southampton
1st ODI July 9 Edgbaston, Birmingham
2nd ODI July 12 The Oval, London
3rd ODI July 14 Lord’s, London

vs South Africa

Match Date Venue
1st ODI July 19 Riverside, Chester-le-Street
2nd ODI July 22 OldTrafford, Manchester
3rd ODI July 24 Headingley, Leeds
1st T20I July 27 Bristol
2nd T20I July 28 Sophia Gardens, Cardiff
3rd T20I July 31 Ageas Bowl, Southampton
1st Test August 17-21 Lord’s, London
2nd Test August 25-29 Edgbaston, Birmingham
3rd Test September 8-12 The Oval, London
Ollie Robinson PA Images via Getty Images
Ollie Robinson PA Images via Getty Images
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Ollie Robinson Picks Maiden Five-Wicket Haul On Comeback Test

Ollie Robinson, the England pacer who grabbed his maiden five-wicket haul in his comeback Test (2nd Test) after being suspended for his offensive old racist tweets, said that he has grown as a person since then.

Ollie Robinson was banned after his racist and sexist tweets as an 18-year-old were discovered on the opening day of his Test debut against New Zealand at the Lord’s in June.

Ollie Robinson bowls on Day 1 of the first England-New Zealand Test. (Getty Images)
Ollie Robinson bowls on Day 1 of the first England-New Zealand Test. (Getty Images)

Ollie Robinson Termed Suspension Period Was The Toughest Period In His Life

The 27-year-old played only two T20 games for Sussex since his suspension from International cricket as he bounced back to grab 5/85 to dismiss India for 278 on day three of the opening Test here.

“I was young 18-19 years old. I made a lot of mistakes, not just those tweets. I’ve grown as a person a lot in that time. Obviously, I’ve learnt a lot try to develop as a person in the last 10 years. I try to make myself the best person I can be,” he said at the end of the day’s play.

England’s Ollie Robinson said he was embarrassed and ashamed of the offensive tweets he made between 2012 and 2014. Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters
England’s Ollie Robinson. Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters

The 27-year-old played only two T20 games for Sussex since his suspension from International cricket as he bounced back to grab 5/85 to dismiss India for 278 on day three of the opening Test here.

Terming the phase as the toughest period of his life, he said: “It was the toughest period in my life. It affected myself and my family but I’ve learnt a lot since then. It was quite tough and to get the rewards, in the end, was pleasing,” he said about his performance as he revelled alongside the master class of veteran England pacer James Anderson (4/54).

Ollie Robinson, who made his Test debut against New Zealand in June, was removed from the squad for the next match-the 2nd and final Test of the series after his historic offensive social media posts resurfaced during the first -his debut Test.

The initial one-game suspension was imposed by the England and Wales Cricket Board before Ollie Robinson withdrew himself from selection for his county side Sussex for the T20 games. Ollie Robinson admitted to breaching two ECB directives in relation to a number of offensive comments he made on Twitter in 2012-14.

Ollie Robinson issued an apology for the posts he sent in 2012 and 2013 when he was in his late teens, which were unearthed and shared online on the day he made his Test debut against the Black Caps. Ollie Robinson led England’s attack in his debut Test vs Kiwis with 4-75 in the first innings at Lord’s and followed up with 3-26 in the second while making a useful 42 with the bat as England fought hard to earn a draw in the 1st Lord’s Test against New Zealand.

James Anderson Goes Past Anil Kumble’s 619 Scalps

Meanwhile, James Anderson has gone past Anil Kumble to become the third-highest wicket-taker in Test cricket’s history. James Anderson went past former Indian leg spinner Anil Kumble’s 619 wickets with the dismissal of KL Rahul, who was caught behind for 84 in India’s first innings of the first Test against England. Only Muttiah Muralitharan (800) and Shane Warne (708) are ahead of James Anderson at the moment.

James Anderson surpassed Anil Kumble's scalps. (Getty Images)
James Anderson surpassed Anil Kumble’s scalps. (Getty Images)
Anil Kumble remains only the second bowler in Test cricket’s history to bag all 10 wickets in an innings. He achieved the tremendous feat against Pakistan in a Test match at the Arun Jaitley Stadium (then Feroz Shah Kotla) in the year 1999 whereas James Anderson is the most successful pacer at the moment, and the 39-year-old is still looking good to cross the 700 wickets mark as well.
Sir Ian Botham(Getty Images)
Sir Ian Botham(Getty Images)
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Ian Botham Criticizes England’s Rest And Rotation Policy

Ian Botham, former England all-rounder did not mince words on England’s contentious rest-and-rotation policy. The legendary all-rounder called said that he would not have liked someone ordering him to take a rest after a couple of good Tests during his playing days.

England’s rotation policy, devised to manage the workload of multi-format players and avoid lengthy periods in bio-bubbles, got underway before the tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year. However, since then, the management led by Chris Silverwood and Ashley Giles has repeatedly forced the team to field second-string sides for crucial Test matches, leading to defeats against India (3-1 in 4 Test Series) and New Zealand (1-0 in 2 Test Series).

Ian Botham
Ian Botham. (Photo by Ian Horrocks/Getty Images)

Ian Botham: Rotation Is An Absolute Garbage

As part of the policy, England rotated several key players for important assignments – including the tour of India earlier this year – including Jos Buttler, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Moeen Ali, Mark Wood, and Jonny Bairstow, as the team drew flak from former cricketers.

England batsman Jos Buttler
England batsman Jos Buttler (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Ian Botham gruffly brushed aside the need for workload management, saying athletes should look to get and stay fit by playing regularly more games and rotation is absolute garbage as one stays fit by bowling.

“I am not sure we are picking the right players. Rotation, I think, is the biggest load of b******s of all time. Absolute garbage. I tell you what, I would like to have seen someone say to me when I was playing “well done, but you’re having a rest next game”. Er no I’m not. Bowl, get fit and stay fit by bowling,” Ian Botham was quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.

Ian Botham: England’s Batting Is A Big Worry

Ian Botham also slammed the England team management and players for their 1-0 loss against New Zealand. He said their decision to draw the 1st Lord’s Test by not chasing a competitive target of 273 from 75 overs wasn’t the best for Test cricket, adding that the series defeat was ‘what they deserved’.

“I think our batting is a big worry. Last month, England had a great opportunity at Lord’s when they were given the opportunity of a last-day run chase against New Zealand. People had been waiting for months and months to see live sport and to go out and bat like that in the final innings with no intent was appalling.”

Zak Crawley-Twitter
Zak Crawley-Twitter

“I thought ‘you guys need to wake up a bit, you rely on the public’. Their reason for why they didn’t do it was because Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes weren’t playing. Excuse me. That gives a chance for someone else to come through. I thought it was very weak. They got what they deserved in the end, to be quite frank,” added Ian Botham.

England will host India for 5 Tests, starting on August 4 at Trent Bridge, Nottingham.

Among England batsmen, Zak Crawley is having a poor run as he averaged a mere 8.75 against Sri Lanka, 16.75 against India, and 5.25 against New Zealand in the recent Test series, but is still being persisted with. Dominic Sibley’s average hasn’t been above 35 in any of the series against Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, and New Zealand.

Joe Root managed only 97 runs averaging a mere 24.25, Dominic Sibley managed 103 runs averaging 34.33, Daniel Lawrence managed 81 runs averaging 40.5 while Rory Burns, England’s highest scorer managed 238 runs averaging 59.5 in the 2 match Test series against New Zealand.

England’s Ollie Robinson Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters
England’s Ollie Robinson Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters
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England Ready To Welcome Back Pacer Ollie Robinson, Says Moeen Ali

Moeen Ali, England off-spinner said the senior national team England is ready to welcome back pacer Ollie Robinson as he is free to resume playing again after serving out a partly-suspended 8-match ban for his historical racist comments on social media.

Ollie Robinson, who made his Test debut against New Zealand in June, was removed from the squad for the next match ahead of the 2nd Test after his historic offensive social media posts resurfaced during the first -his debut Test.
Moeen Ali
Moeen Ali. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Moeen Ali Would Welcome Ollie Robinson Back

Ollie Robinson was fined USD 4,400 and handed an 8-game ban, five of which are suspended for two years. He missed England’s second Test against New Zealand and two T20 Blast games for his county during an investigation over the comments.

Ollie Robinson earlier issued an apology for the posts he sent in 2012 and 2013 when he was in his late teens, which were unearthed and shared online on the day he made his Test debut against the Black Caps earlier this week.

Ollie Robinson led England’s attack with 4-75 in the first innings at Lord’s and followed up with 3-26 in the second while making a useful 42 with the bat as England fought hard to earn a draw in the 1st Lord’s Test against New Zealand.

Ollie Robinson
Ollie Robinson. Image-Getty

The initial one-game suspension was imposed by the England and Wales Cricket Board before Ollie Robinson withdrew himself from selection for his county side Sussex for the T20 games. Ollie Robinson has admitted to breaching two ECB directives in relation to a number of offensive comments he made on Twitter in 2012-14.

“Of course I would welcome him back. I have only known him for a short period but he seems a very nice guy and I get on really well with him,” Moeen Ali said.

“I am sure he has learned from his mistakes. He has done his time in terms of the ban. I think everybody makes mistakes – you forgive, forget, carry on with life and try and move on.”

Moeen Ali and England team will be seen in action in the third ODI against Sri Lanka on Sunday. Ollie Robinson, who took 7 wickets in his debut Test, is likely to be selected for the Test series against India next month.

Moeen Ali: ECB Did The Right Thing And Ollie Robinson’s Punishment Is Sufficient

Moeen Ali also credited the ECB for taking punitive action, which he believes is a correct step in the right direction when it comes to dealing with discrimination and sending a message to young budding cricketers across the country. Moeen Ali said the Ollie Robinson saga highlights that even young cricketers, who are coming through the ranks have to be careful with what they say and post on social media.

“I thought the ECB did the right thing pulling him out of the Test Series and I think [the punishment is sufficient], that the right thing has been done,” Ali added.

Ollie Robinson has apologized for offensive tweets posted as a teenager PA Images via Getty Images
Ollie Robinson has apologized for offensive tweets posted as a teenager PA Images via Getty Images

“Regardless of the length of the punishment, the fact there was punishment was good. It’s all about looking forward now and how you can’t get away with these kinds of things, that things need to change and people need to change. Even as a young player coming through the county circuit, you have to be careful with things you tweet.”

Following his debut Test match, against New Zealand at Lord’s, Ollie Robinson was suspended by ECB from the second Test and then he himself pulled out of a couple of Blast T20 matches. As it turned out he now has been handed an eight-match suspension with five of those suspended for two years – which means he is eligible to play now having missed three matches already.

Lord's to be at full capacity for England-Pakistan ODI Read more At: https://www.aninews.in/news/sports/cricket/lords-to-be-at-full-capacity-for-england-pakistan-odi20210701114118/
Lord's to be at full capacity for England-Pakistan ODI Read more At: https://www.aninews.in/news/sports/cricket/lords-to-be-at-full-capacity-for-england-pakistan-odi20210701114118/
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Lord’s To Have Full Attendance In The 2nd England-Pakistan ODI

Lord’s Cricket Stadium, the venue of the 2nd ODI between England and Pakistan on July 10 will have a 100 per cent crowd in attendance. England will play a home international match in front of a full-capacity crowd in Lords for the first time since September 2019 next Saturday, after the second ODI against Pakistan at the iconic cricket stadium was included in the UK government’s Event Research Programme (ERP).

Lords will host a full-capacity ODI for the first time since the 2019 World Cup final Getty Images
Lord’s will host a full-capacity ODI for the first time since the 2019 World Cup final Getty Images

Lord’s Cricket Ground Have Been Granted Permission To Operate At 100 Percent Seating Capacity

Fans have started to return to international cricket in England over the last month, with around 17,000 fans attending the first three days of the second Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston and capacities of around 20-25% elsewhere, subject to government regulations.
England vs Pakistan Photo: @ICC Photo: @ICC
England vs Pakistan Photo: @ICC Photo: @ICC
ECB announced last week that limited-overs fixtures against Sri Lanka and Pakistan would be included in the ERP as England continues to work towards the total lifting of Covid-related restrictions, scheduled for July 19, after which Warwickshire announced that they would stage the third ODI against Pakistan in front of an 80% full Edgbaston.

“We have been in consultation with Public Health England and our local Safety Advisory Group on the arrangements for the match and we are pleased to confirm that we have been granted permission to operate at 100 percent seating capacity for this match, with the implementation of a number of risk reduction measures,” read an official statement, available on the website of Lord’s Cricket Ground.

Ticket-holders over the age of 11 will be required to provide either proof of a recent negative lateral flow test, proof of full vaccination, or proof of natural immunity via a positive PCR test result taken in the last 180 days.

When in the Lord’s ground, there will be no social distancing requirements and the rule of six will not apply in the restaurants and hospitality areas. Face coverings will be required to be worn when moving around the ground (‘mask on the move’) when using bars and food outlets for example.

Birmingham’s Edgbaston Stadium Will Operate At 80 Percent Capacity In The 3rd ODI Between England And Pakistan

Earlier, Birmingham’s Edgbaston Stadium was confirmed as part of the UK Government’s Events Research Programme (ERP) and it will operate at 80 per cent capacity for the upcoming One Day International (ODI) between England and Pakistan. Taking place on July 13 (Tuesday), Edgbaston will be able to accommodate around 19,000 fans, including under 16s, in the stadium bowl and hospitality lounges as part of the research study.

Edgbaston is known for its vibrant atmosphere
Edgbaston is known for its vibrant atmosphere Photograph: Wired Photos/Shutterstock

England will host Pakistan in a six-match limited-overs series starting July 08. Pakistan will take this tour as a dress rehearsal for the T20 World Cup later this year. The Men in Green will be touring England for a limited-overs series, comprising three ODIs and as many T20Is.

Edgbaston is known for its vibrant atmosphere and will be at 70% capacity when England play New Zealand. Photograph: Wired Photos/Shutterstock
Edgbaston is known for its vibrant atmosphere and will be at 70% capacity when England play New Zealand. Photograph: Wired Photos/Shutterstock
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Edgbaston Stadium Will Operate At 80 % Capacity For 3rd ODI Between England, Pakistan

Edgbaston Stadium at Birmingham has been confirmed as part of the UK Government’s Events Research Programme (ERP) and it will operate at 80 per cent capacity for the upcoming 3rd One Day International (ODI) between England and Pakistan.

The third ODI between England and Pakistan at Edgbaston Stadium next month will be permitted an 80 percent capacity crowd, in the latest steps of a government pilot scheme geared towards the return of full stadiums in the wake of the Covid-19 outbreak.

England vs Pakistan Photo: @ICC Photo: @ICC
England vs Pakistan Photo: @ICC Photo: @ICC

 

 

Edgbaston Stadium Will Witness The 3rd ODI Between England And Pakistan

The ODI match, a day-night contest on July 13, is set to be held in front of a 19,000 crowd, which would make it the best-attended cricket match in the UK since the start of the pandemic. Taking place on July 13 (Tuesday), Edgbaston Stadium will be able to accommodate around 19,000 fans, including under 16s, in the stadium bowl and hospitality lounges without social distancing as part of the research study.

Stuart Cain, Chief Executive at Edgbaston, in an official release said: “It is fantastic for sport in the West Midlands that so many cricket fans will be able to enjoy another blockbuster fixture in England versus Pakistan at Edgbaston.”

COVID-19: Edgbaston to host England-Pakistan ODI with 80 percent crowd capacity
COVID-19: Edgbaston to host England-Pakistan ODI with 80 percent crowd capacity

“The recent Test match gave us a fantastic opportunity to build a new model for large-scale sporting events and I am pleased to see elements of this first trial being carried forward for the Pakistan match. Technology played a big part in this and we will again focus on using this as a way of creating a safe environment whilst enhancing Edgbaston’s reputation as one of the best atmospheres in world cricket,” he added.

All attendees for the upcoming ODI will be required to show a negative COVID Lateral Flow Test result, which is necessary for anyone aged 11 years and older, or proof of two vaccinations (first and second dose) at least 14 days before the fixture to secure entry.

England will host Pakistan in a six-match limited-overs series starting July 08. Pakistan will take this tour as a dress rehearsal for the T20 World Cup later this year. The Men in Green will be touring England for a limited-overs series, comprising three ODIs and as many T20Is.

Edgbaston Successfully Hosted The 2nd Test Match Between England And New Zealand Which The Latter Won

Earlier, Edgbaston Stadium had successfully hosted the 2nd Test match between England and New Zealand, which the latter won and accommodated around 60,000 spectators (70 percent capacity) across four days with the same spectator entry requirements.

Edgbaston Stadium : Fans returned to the Edgbaston stands for the New Zealand Test PA Images via Getty Images
Edgbaston Stadium: Fans returned to the Edgbaston stands for the New Zealand Test PA Images via Getty Images

Tom Latham led the New Zealand team to a memorable 1-0 Test series triumph in the two-match series against hosts England, in the absence of injured Kane Williamson, which was their first in the UK since 1999.

Neil Wagner and Matt Henry took three wickets each as England was bundled out for 122 in the second innings, and in the end, New Zealand won the second Test on Day Four comfortably by eight wickets at Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham. NZ reclaimed the top spot in ICC Test rankings. Later they won the ICC WTC beating India in the final.

New Zealand had a first innings lead of 85 in the 2nd Test despite several of their key members being absent or battling injury. England’s another top order failure in the 2nd innings saw them win the 2nd Test after a draw in the 1st one.

New Zealand 388 (Young 82, Conway 80, Taylor 80, Broad 4-48) and 41 for 2 (Latham 23*) beat England 303 (Lawrence 81*, Burns 81, Boult 4-85) and 122 (Wood 29, Wagner 3-18, Henry 3-36) by eight wickets

Michael Vaughan (L), Shane Warne and Mark Waugh
Michael Vaughan (L), Shane Warne and Mark Waugh
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England’s Batting Order Is Fragile: Michael Vaughan, Shane Warne, Mark Waugh Blast England

England’s recent 1-0 defeat to New Zealand in a two-match series at home has put up big question marks over their batsmen.  The New Zealand series was the second time when the England batsmen failed to produce a comprehensive performance. Earlier in the year, during their tour of India, England, barring the series opener in Chennai, failed to match India in a 1-3 series defeat.

England has a chance to avenge the loss when they host India for a five-match series starting August 4 but they need to sort out their batting in order to avoid a second straight series defeat at home. Considering 2021 is the Ashes year as well, former stars including Australian leg spinner Shane Warne, England batsman Michael Vaughan, and former Australian batsman Mark Waugh have suggested changes Joe Root must make to succeed.

England skipper Joe Root
England skipper Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

England’s Batting Order Is Fragile Admits Michael Vaughan Who Feels Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, And Chris Woakes’ Inclusion Will Improve The Team

Speaking on Fox Cricket’s ‘Road to the Ashes’ podcast, Michael Vaughan opened up on the discussion by issuing a warning to the England side that they can’t go into Ashes with a batting order this fragile and incompetent. Michael Vaughan believes that the inclusion of Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, and Chris Woakes will improve the team but it won’t be sufficient as the team management needs to take some harsh calls.

“The batting line-up is fragile, it is as simple as that,” he said. “[Jos] Buttler, [Ben] Stokes will come back in, [Chris] Woakes – yes, they will improve the team but unless that batting line-up changes and can learn and understand how to get big scores against good bowlers, I can’t see how they can compete. It’s going to be tough to beat India on these shores but Australia will get 450-500, I can’t see it unless they make one or two changes.”

“I’d bring in Dawid Malan back in at No. 3,” he said. “Apparently he is not popular but you know what, who gives a hoot if he scores runs, that’s what I like to see. He’s got a bit of experience, he played well against you guys in Australia last time.

England batsman Jos Buttler
England batsman Jos Buttler (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

“I’d put him at No. 3, I’d put [Zak] Crawley in to open. I know that’s a bit of fortune for Crawley because he hasn’t got as many runs but I think he can play. I’d leave [Rory] Burns, Crawley, Malan, Root, Stokes, Ollie Pope at six, Buttler at seven, Woakes at eight. Will that be a good enough eight to get big, big scores? I think it’d be a better chance than the seven I saw against New Zealand. They were very, very fragile,” he added.

Injuries to pacer Jofra Archer and all-rounder Ben Stokes have been compounded by rest breaks for the likes of Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow, Chris Woakes, Moeen Ali, and Mark Wood.

Zak Crawley is having a poor run as he averaged a mere 8.75 against Sri Lanka, 16.75 against India, and 5.25 against New Zealand in the Test series, but is still being persisted with. Dominic Sibley’s average hasn’t been above 35 in any of the series against Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, and New Zealand.
Joe Root managed only 97 runs averaging a mere 24.25, Dominic Sibley managed 103 runs averaging 34.33, Daniel Lawrence managed 81 runs averaging 40.5 while Rory Burns managed 238 runs averaging 59.5 in the Test series against New Zealand.

Mark Waugh Wants To Exclude Dom Sibley While Shane Warne Feels England Missed A Trick By Playing Rory Burns And Dom Sibley As Openers

Mark Waugh also backed the idea of the exclusion of Dom Sibley from the side as he believes that the batter isn’t a Test player and shouldn’t have been selected in the team in the first place. Mark Waugh added that there is no depth to the England batting as no player including the likes of Rory Burns, Dom Sibley, Zak Crawley, Ollie Pope, and Dan Lawrence have shown any intent or quality.

Zak Crawley-Twitter
Zak Crawley-Twitter

Meanwhile, Shane Warne echoed the same sentiments as Mark Waugh and Michael Vaughan. The spin legend asserted that England is missing a trick by playing Rory Burns and Dom Sibley as their opening pair. He also criticized the two England batsmen by saying that they don’t pose any threat to the opposition team and play into the opposition bowlers’ hands.

Speaking about the changes, Shane Warne suggested that England needs to persist with middle-order batsman Zak Crawley as he is a class player but is going through a lean patch. He also wants Jonny Bairstow to be recalled.

The likes of James Bracey, Joe Denly, Tom Lammonby, Joe Clarke, Will Rhodes, Sam Northeast, James Vince, Gary Ballance, and Dawid Malan are in contention for Test recall, debut, or more opportunities.

Chris Woakes. (Getty Images)
Chris Woakes. (Getty Images)
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Chris Woakes Reveals ECB Officials Apologised To Him For Taxi Fiasco

Chris Woakes, England’s pace bowling all-rounder has revealed that England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) officials have apologi\sed to him for making him take a taxi that ultimately ruined his winter.

Chris Woakes was told to share a cab with spin all-rounder Moeen Ali from Birmingham to Heathrow Airport ahead of England’s Test tour of Sri Lanka in January. The 32-year-old had to isolate for a week when his fellow passenger tested positive for COVID-19 after they arrived in the island nation.

Chris Woakes Getty Images
Chris Woakes Getty Images

Chris Woakes Reveals He And Moeen Ali Were Put In An Unfortunate Situation And Vented His Frustration

Chris Woakes was ruled out of the first Test against Sri Lanka at Galle which eventually saw him miss every game in winter despite being voted player of the summer last season. The all-rounder recalled being frustrated with the hapless turn of events, adding that missing the winter season felt like a ‘waste’ of form to him.

Chris Woakes has acquired an apology from England over his taxi-sharing drama. The England star was dominated out after sharing a taxi with Moeen Ali, who contracted Covid-19.

“It was a big moment and there have been apologies but we were put in an unfortunate situation and I missed out because of that. I vented my frustration at the time. No stone has been left unturned during COVID-19 but that’s the one thing we did not get right. I paid the price for that.”

Chris Woakes, Moeen Ali - Action Images Via Reuters
Chris Woakes, Moeen Ali – Action Images Via Reuters

Chris Woakes feels he could have been a part of the playing XI for the first Test against Sri Lanka.

“I thought I was a shoo-in for the first Test. It doesn’t mean I would have then played all Tests but I would have had a chance to put my hand up and put in a strong performance. Not playing all winter after the summer I had, feels like a waste. You want to make the most of your form when you’re hot,” Woakes was quoted saying by Daily Mail.

After winning the two Tests in Sri Lanka, England lost the four-match test series in India. Moeen Ali featured in the India series for a solitary test before controversially heading home under the workload-management policy.

Chris Woakes Decided To Take A Break To Be With His Family Which Effectively Ruled Him Out Of Recent 2 Tests Against New Zealand

Chris Woakes also missed the recent two-test match series against New Zealand which the Kiwis won but admitted that he had himself to blame for this one. The ECB offered the players, who played in IPL 2021, a break from the home series, and Chris Woakes accepted it to be with his family.

“The IPL was very much on my shoulders. But it was tricky. The tests were scheduled late and as soon as I got out of isolation I would have had to play for Warwickshire after just a few days at home. It was in our hands and I decided a break with my family would do me good in the long run,” he added.

Chris Woakes last played a T20I for England against Pakistan in 2015-16 Getty Images
Chris Woakes last played a T20I for England against Pakistan in 2015-16 Getty Images

Chris Woakes has now been named in the squad for England’s T20 series against Sri Lanka. If given the opportunity, he will feature in a T20I after almost six years.

England has recalled Chris Woakes, David Willey, and Liam Dawson to their T20I squad to face Sri Lanka later this month. Chris Woakes has not played T20 cricket for England since 2015 but comes in as one of three changes from the India tour in March, with Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and Reece Topley ruled out through injury.

England T20I squad For Sri Lanka: Eoin Morgan (capt), Moeen Ali, Jonathan Bairstow, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Liam Dawson, Chris Jordan, Liam Livingstone, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Jason Roy, David Willey, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood

England squad for Sri Lanka ODIs: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jonathan Bairstow, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler (wk), Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Liam Dawson, George Garton, Liam Livingstone, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, David Willey, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood

Gautam Gambhir. Photo Credit: Getty Images.
Gautam Gambhir. Photo Credit: Getty Images.
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New Zealand Have An Edge As There’s No Substitute For Match Practice: Gautam Gambhir

Gautam Gambhir believes New Zealand will have a slight edge over India in the World Test Championship (WTC) final at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton starting on Friday. India and New Zealand will lock horns for the inaugural WTC title at a neutral venue in what promises to be a cracker of a contest.

India played an intra-squad simulation match to prepare for the WTC final, but Gautam Gambhir believes there is no substitute for match practice.

Gautam Gambhir AFP
Gautam Gambhir AFP

Gautam Gambhir Puts New Zealand Ahead Of India

Gautam Gambhir put New Zealand ahead of India because of the two-Test matches they played against England before the WTC final. The Kane Williamson-led side took the two-match series 1-0 by winning the second Test at Birmingham by eight wickets.

“It is difficult to predict the favourites in the one-off final. But I feel New Zealand will have a slight advantage because they have played two Test matches in England, and most importantly, they have won it,” Gautam Gambhir told Aaj Tak on eSalaamCricket.

New Zealand's Tom Latham, left, holds the winners' trophy
New Zealand’s Tom Latham holds the winners’ trophy. (Photo | AP)

Indian cricketers, on the other hand, are coming from a long layoff as IPL 2021 was postponed after the first half due to Covid-19. Their last Test match was at home against England in the first week of March. The Virat Kohli-led side did play an intra-squad simulation match to prepare for the WTC final, but Gautam Gambhir believes there is no substitute for match practice.

“You can play as many intra-squad matches, but there is no substitute to match practice. As a result, New Zealand will be better prepared for the WTC final,” added Gambhir.

Tom Latham led the New Zealand team to a memorable 1-0 Test series triumph in the two-match series against hosts England, in the absence of injured Kane Williamson, which is their first in the UK since 1999.

Ishant Sharma(3/36) shone with the ball in the India intra-squad practice match in Southampton before the WTC final. Openers Shubman Gill (85 off 135 balls) and Rishabh Pant (121* off 94 balls) shone with the bat. Ravindra Jadeja scored an unbeaten 54 off 76 balls in India’s intra-squad practice match at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton. With the ball, Mohammed Siraj impressed with figures of 2/22 on the third day of the four-day practice match.

Gautam Gambhir Believes Indian Bowlers Can Trouble Any Team At Any Surface

The former left-hander, however, sang praises of the Indian bowling attack, which he believes can take 20 wickets on any track. Also, the WTC title will be shared between India and New Zealand if the Test match ends in a draw or a tie, but Gautam Gambhir reckons both sides should go for a win.

“I have always believed that it is bowlers who win you the Test matches. To win a Test match, you need to take 20 wickets, and I think the current Indian bowling line-up can trouble any team at any surface. The depth in Indian bowling attack is immense,” feels Gambhir.

Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah and Ishant Sharma are likely to lead India's bowling attack in England
Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, and Ishant Sharma are likely to lead India’s bowling attack in England (Source: AP)

For over a decade Ishant Sharma has been the spearhead of India’s fast-bowling attack, producing a level of quality that will only be fully appreciated when he’s no longer around to lead the line.

The 32-year-old has already achieved the milestone of passing 300 Test wickets. He also has played his 100th Test for India, becoming only the second Indian quick to do so, following in the footsteps of the legendary Kapil Dev.

Steve Smith (Image Credit: Twitter)
Steve Smith (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Steve Smith Reclaims The No. 1 Spot In The ICC Test Batsmen Rankings

Steve Smith, Australian batsman has surpassed New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson to become the top-ranked Test batsman in the latest ICC Test rankings that were revealed on Wednesday. India captain Virat Kohli jumped to the number 4th spot while Australia batsman Steve Smith reclaimed the No.1 position in the ICC Test rankings for batsmen for the first time since the Boxing Day Tests last year.

Steve Smith takes over from New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, who is set to lead his team in the ICC World Test Championship Final against India at the Hampshire Bowl in Southampton from Friday.

Kane Williamson, Steve Smith, Virat Kohli (L-R)
Kane Williamson, Steve Smith, Virat Kohli (L-R)

Steve Smith Reclaims Top Spot While Kane Williamson Is Second Among Batsmen

Kane Williamson, who missed the second Test against England at Edgbaston due to injury after scoring 13 runs in the drawn first Test at Lord’s, has slipped five points behind Steve Smith’s 891 rating points and is second in the batters’ list. This means that Steve Smith has been at the top for 167 Tests played worldwide in total, only behind Garry Sobers (189 matches) and Viv Richards (179 matches).

Kane Williamson (AP)
Kane Williamson (AP)

An injury saw Kane Williamson miss the second Test against England at Edgbaston, hence paving way for Steve Smith to claim the No. 1 spot. Courtesy of his performances in the Test series, Kane Williamson lost 5 points because of which he dropped down to No. 2 spot.

The rankings also produced a positive change for Virat Kohli who moved from 5th position to 4th in the ICC Test Rankings for batsmen. Virat Kohli has as many as 6 Test matches to come — one against New Zealand in the WTC final and 5 against England — and he would be determined to further improve his position in the ICC Test rankings.

Quinton de Kock Gains 11 Positions To Reach Joint 12th Position, While South African Pave Trio Of Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, And Lungi Ngidi Moves Up

The latest men’s weekly update, which also includes performances from the first Test between South Africa and the West Indies in St Lucia, sees Quinton de Kock in joint-12th position with Cheteshwar Pujara while his compatriot Adrian Markram has advanced two slots to reach 14th position.

Quinton de Kock, who was named player of the match for scoring an unbeaten 141 that helped his team win by an innings and 63 runs, has gained 11 positions to attain his highest position since December 2019.

Quinton de Kock works one on the leg side AFP/Getty Images
Quinton de Kock works one on the leg side AFP/Getty Images

South Africa’s pace bowlers too have made rapid strides after the huge win. Formerly top-ranked Kagiso Rabada has gained two spots to reach the seventh place after a five-wicket haul in the second innings, Anrich Nortje is up into the top 30 for the first time in his career finishing with seven wickets in the match, while Lungi Ngidi is up 14 places to 44th position with a first-innings five-wicket haul.

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