Kane Williamson Age, Biography, career, stats, networth, Ranking & News

Kane Williamson

Representational image of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup trophy | AFP / Jewel Samad
Representational image of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup trophy | AFP / Jewel Samad
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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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Joe Root And Eimear Richardson Voted Winners Of ICC Player Of August Month

Joe Root, England skipper and Ireland star Eimear Richardson have been voted winners of the ICC Player of the Month for August. Joe Root saw off competition from Jasprit Bumrah, the India pacer, and Pakistan speedster Shaheen Shah Afridi to win the award following a stellar August for the England captain.

Joe Root scored 507 runs in three Tests against India in August. He scored three important centuries, including an unbeaten 180* at Lord’s, and the form propelled him to the top of the MRF Tyres ICC Test Rankings for batters. The five-match series ended abruptly when the final Test had to be cancelled because of a Covid-19 outbreak in the Indian camp.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

Joe Root Was Impressive With The Bat Leading England From The Front: JP Duminy

Joe Root had scored more runs (507) in the first three Tests than England’s next three highest run-scorers combined and had also been their highest individual scorer in each of their five innings. He scored three centuries, 109 in Trent Bridge, an unbeaten 180 in Lord’s, and 121 at his home ground in Headingley, which resulted in an England win.

“With the expectation and responsibility on his shoulders as the captain, I was really impressed with how he led from the front with the bat, and become the number one ranked Test batter in the world,” said former South Africa all-rounder JP Duminy, one of the panellists in the ICC Voting Academy.

Virat Kohli, Joe Root
Virat Kohli, Joe Root

On the back of his stunning display in August, Joe Root climbed to the top of ICC Men’s Test Rankings for batters on September 1. Placed fifth in the rankings before the start of the series, the England skipper had leapfrogged Virat Kohli, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, and Kane Williamson to the No.1 spot.

Eimear Richardson Of Ireland Put In A Fine All-Round Display In Women’s T20 WC Europe Qualifier

In the women’s award, Eimear Richardson saw off tough competition from teammate Gaby Lewis and Thailand’s Nattaya Boochatham.  Eimear Richardson put in a fine all-round display in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Europe Qualifier last month, which led her to be named the Player of the Tournament.

She took seven wickets at an economy rate of 4.19 in the tournament, including important spells of 2/6 in the opener against Germany and 2/24 against group-toppers Scotland. She also returned 2/0 and 1/22 against France and Netherlands respectively, as Ireland came second in their group.

Her contributions went beyond the ball. She scored a crucial 49-ball 53 in their final match against the Netherlands and totalled 76 runs in the tournament – a return that put her in the top five of the run charts.

“It was very exciting to be nominated for the ICC Women’s Player of the Month for August and to now be voted as the winner is just so amazing and humbling,” Richardson said.

“It was great to contribute to overall team performances at the European Qualifiers and hopefully we have done enough to make the next stage and compete on a global level again.”

Joe Root, Elmear Richardson, ICC Player Of The Month August 2021
Joe Root, Elmear Richardson, ICC Player Of The Month August 2021

Her performances were lauded by Pommie Mbangwa of the ICC Voting Academy.

“What an amazing and important contribution in a tournament that is important to all the teams, “he said. 

“What any team wants is for players to stand up at critical times and Eimear’s contributions with bat and ball have come at the right time, been consistent and particularly significant.”

Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan and West Indies women’s team captain Stafanie Taylor were the winners of the ICC Player of the Month in July.

Misbah-ul-Haq- the head coach of the Pakistan cricket team.© AFP
Misbah-ul-Haq- the head coach of the Pakistan cricket team.© AFP
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It’s Not An Ideal Situation For Pakistan After Resignation From Misbah-ul-Haq And Waqar Younis Before T20I World Cup: Shadab Khan

Shadab Khan, Pakistan’s white-ball vice-captain admits the situation arising out of the sudden resignation of head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and bowling coach Waqar Younis was not ideal but the team was trying to shun any negative thoughts as important events are coming up.
The Pakistan Cricket Board on Monday announced that Misbah-ul-Haq and Waqar Younis have resigned and that former Pakistan Test players, Saqlain Mushtaq and Abdul Razzaq would be interim coaches for the time being.
Pakistan coaching unit - comprising Misbah-ul-Haq, Waqar Younis (AFP)
Pakistan coaching unit – comprising Misbah-ul-Haq, Waqar Younis (AFP)

Shadab Khan: It’s Not An Ideal Situation For Pakistan As Two Coaches Step Down Before T20I World Cup

The Pakistan Cricket Board on Monday announced that Misbah-ul-Haq and Waqar Younis have resigned and that former Pakistan Test players, Saqlain Mushtaq and Abdul Razzaq would be interim coaches for the time being.

The sudden changes coincide with the induction of former Test captain Ramiz Raja as the new PCB chairman on September 13. Ramiz Raja on his YouTube channel and as a commentator and analyst has maintained that he does not believe Misbah-ul-Haq and Waqar Younis are the best coaches for the Pakistan team.

“I can’t comment on their decision but yes we as a team are trying to ensure that no negativity creeps into our camp because of recent happenings because it is not an ideal situation for us,” Shadab Khan said.

“Our focus is on doing the things that are in our control in the right manner. We don’t want to think about the what-ifs of the situation. With the T20 World Cup approaching, our focus is to prepare ourselves for it,” said the 22-year-old Shadab Khan.

Shadab Khan (File Photo)
Shadab Khan (File Photo)

Pakistan host New Zealand in a limited-overs series of three ODIs and five T20Is beginning on September 17 and then heads to the T20 World Cup beginning in the UAE from October 17. Shadab Khan said there’s no guarantee of success in international cricket.

“Look, we can do our best to prepare for a situation but there is no guarantee about success or failure. It is the same with every team,” said the seasoned all-rounder, who is deputy to Babar Azam.

“We are trying to play modern-day cricket and be aggressive and selfless in our approach to the game but we will also face failures in this and I think we need to accept that.”
Shadab Khan praised Pakistan skipper Babar Azam, saying that he had always backed the national squad. Speaking about the transformation needed in the Pakistan squad, the vice-captain said it wouldn’t be an issue as “aggression is on our DNA.”

Shadab Khan: It Would Have Been Good If New Zealand Had Sent Their Full Strength Squad To Pakistan

Shadab Khan, a member of the Pakistan squad that won the Champions Trophy in 2017, said it would have been good if New Zealand had sent their full-strength squad to Pakistan for the upcoming three ODI and five T20I series as it would have meant more competitive cricket going into the T20 World Cup.

“But what we have to realize is that this is their national team and it has eight to nine players who have played for them in ODI cricket and even T20 matches and we are not going to underestimate them at all. That would be a mistake.”

New Zealand batsman Tom Latham acknowledges the crowd after reaching his century (Photo: AFP)
New Zealand batsman Tom Latham acknowledges the crowd after reaching his century (Photo: AFP)
Tom Latham will lead New Zealand in the absence of Kane Williamson on their white-ball tours of Pakistan and Bangladesh starting September. The opener will stand in as leader on both tours across white-ball formats. Several first-team players, including Kane Williamson, Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, and Lockie Ferguson will be unavailable owing to their involvement in the IPL, which clashes with part of the tour.
Bangladesh won 3 T20Is while New Zealand won a solitary T20I. The 5th T20I will be played on 10th September.
Squad for Bangladesh T20Is and Pakistan ODIs: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Finn Allen, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell (wk), Doug Bracewell, Colin de Grandhomme, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry (ODI only), Scott Kuggeleijn, Cole McConchie, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Rachin Ravindra, Ben Sears (T20 only), Blair Tickner, Will Young.
Squad for Pakistan T20Is: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Finn Allen, Todd Astle, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell (wk), Mark Chapman, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Daryl Mitchell, Ajaz Patel, Ish Sodhi, Ben Sears, Blair Tickner, Will Young.
Gautam Gambhir feels New Zealand's excellent record against India in ICC events does not matter
Gautam Gambhir feels New Zealand's excellent record against India in ICC events does not matter
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India And New Zealand Match In 2021 T20I World Cup Will Be Evenly Poised: Gautam Gambhir

Gautam Gambhir believes the India-New Zealand clash at the upcoming T20 World Cup is an evenly-matched contest. Team India will play New Zealand in their second match of the T20 World Cup, scheduled to be played on October 31 in Dubai.

The Virat Kohli-led side will go into the match after opening their campaign against arch-rivals Pakistan.

Gautam Gambhir AFP
Gautam Gambhir AFP

Gautam Gambhir: India And New Zealand Match In 2021 T20I World Cup Will Be Evenly Poised

During a discussion on the Star Sports show Game Plan, Gautam Gambhir pointed out that the success the Kiwis have enjoyed in previous ICC tournaments against India is immaterial.

“Absolutely 50-50. When you go to such a big tournament, the records are only for the media and the fans. The records do not matter for the players at all and they do not think about them as well.”

India will have a one-week break after playing against Pakistan, and will next take on the New Zealand side on 31st October 2021 once again in Dubai. The Indian side will play their third match of the tournament on 3rd November 2021, against the Afghanistan side.

India will play their 4th match of the tournament against the first placed qualifier team from Group B on 5th November 2021 at Dubai. And, their final Group fixture will be played on 8th November 2021, against the second-placed qualifying team from Group A in Dubai.

Indian Cricket Team
Indian Cricket Team. Image Credits: Twitter

The former Indian opener added that an individual player might be concerned about his record against an opposition cricketer, but teams are not bothered about such stats.

“Yes, you can think about your individual record. If a player is struggling against a particular bowler, that can be on his mind. But Pakistan having never won against India and India having never won against New Zealand, that never matters.”

India has not defeated New Zealand in an ICC event since the 2003 ODI World Cup. The Kiwis were also the only team they lost to during their title-winning run at the 2007 T20 World Cup.

Gautam Gambhir: India Can Definitely Defeat New Zealand For Having Firepower

Gautam Gambhir believes Team India can certainly put it across the Kane Williamson-led side, considering the all-around depth of their squad.  Gautam Gambhir highlighted that Team India has plenty of star players in their lineup.

“India can definitely defeat New Zealand, you have the firepower. You have Jasprit Bumrah, Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul – when you have batsmen and bowlers like these, it will not be easy for New Zealand.”

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

On the flip side, Gautam Gambhir warned that the Kiwis cannot be taken lightly either as they have a well-balanced side too.

“We cannot say New Zealand are the underdogs because they are a very very well-balanced side. They have Trent Boult and Lockie Ferguson, and they have the firepower in the batting. So, you will have to play good cricket.”

Team India’s run at the last two ICC events has come to an end at the hands of New Zealand namely at the 2019 World Cup semi-final and the inaugural World Test Championship. They will hope to buck the trend and put it across the ICC World Test champions this time around.

New Zealand knocked out India in the 2019 ODI World Cup, defeating the Virat Kohli-led side in the semifinal. India travelled to New Zealand in February 2020, where they lost the ODI series and the Test series to the Kane Williamson-led team. The recent World Test Championship final defeat against NZ further showcased India’s inability to beat the Kiwis in ICC tournaments.

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New Zealand’s Pakistan Tour Subjected To Security Clearance After Taliban’s Afghanistan Takeover

New Zealand will go ahead with its tour of Pakistan subjected to clearance from security consultant Reg Dickason after some Kiwi players expressed concerns about touring the country following the militant group Taliban’s takeover of neighbouring Afghanistan.

New Zealand is due to reach Islamabad on September 11 to play three ODIs and five T20 Internationals in Rawalpindi and Lahore until October 3.

New Zealand Cricket Team
New Zealand Cricket Team-AFP

New Zealand Appointed International Security Consultant And Expert Reg Dickason To Visit Pakistan To Advise Whether Tour Will Go Ahead After Assessing Security

However, New Zealand Cricket officials have now commissioned an international security consultant and expert, Reg Dickason to visit Pakistan later this week to carry out thorough security and COVID-19 assessment before advising them whether they should send their team to Pakistan.

“Dickason has been a regular visit to Pakistan to carry out security and other cricket related assessments for the International Cricket Council and other boards in recent years so we are confident there is no one better than him to give a compressive report on the security situation in the region following the events in Afghanistan,” an official source in the Pakistan Cricket Board, said.

Kane Williamson (AP)
Kane Williamson (AP)

New Zealand is already set to field a depleted team with seven to eight of their leading players, including the captain, Kane Williamson, not coming due to their IPL commitments.

Kane Williamson and senior players like Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Siefert, Jimmy Neesham, Mitchel Santner have skipped the tour because of their commitments in the T20 event, while others like Tim Southee and Devon Conway are also unavailable for the Pakistan tour.

Tom Latham To Lead New Zealand In The Limited Overs Pakistan Tour In Several Cricketers Absence For IPL Commitments

New Zealand Cricket said on Wednesday that the players would have the right to withdraw from the tour if they felt uneasy about touring Pakistan even if the tour went ahead on the advice of Reg Dickason and other assessments.

New Zealand batsman Tom Latham acknowledges the crowd after reaching his century (Photo: AFP)
New Zealand batsman Tom Latham acknowledges the crowd after reaching his century (Photo: AFP)

New Zealand will be captained by senior batsman Tom Latham during the tour, which will be their first to the country since 2003. New Zealand cricket also has sent one of their officials and a security consultant in Bangladesh for a reconnaissance visit as their team first visits Bangladesh and then flies to Pakistan. New Zealand takes on Bangladesh in five T20Is in September, followed by three ODIs and five T20Is in Pakistan.

New Zealand has also named 15 member squad for the forthcoming T20 World Cup under the leadership of Kane Williamson. Ross Taylor, the veteran Kiwi batsman, and all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme are the major exclusions from the squad. New Zealand last toured Pakistan in November 2003 when they played five ODIs.

New Zealand T20 World Cup squad: 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).

Squad for Bangladesh T20Is and Pakistan ODIs: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Finn Allen, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell (wk), Doug Bracewell, Colin de Grandhomme, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry (ODI only), Scott Kuggeleijn, Cole McConchie, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Rachin Ravindra, Ben Sears (T20 only), Blair Tickner, Will Young.
Squad for Pakistan T20Is: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Finn Allen, Todd Astle, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell (wk), Mark Chapman, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Daryl Mitchell, Ajaz Patel, Ish Sodhi, Ben Sears, Blair Tickner, Will Young.
Inzamam-ul-Haq | AFP
Inzamam-ul-Haq | AFP
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Inzamam-ul-Haq Questions Why ICC Is Silent Despite Several New Zealand Players Pulling Out Of Pakistan Series For IPL 2021

Inzamam-ul-Haq lashed out at ICC and questioned its silence on the matter after being irked with New Zealand’s players’ decision to pull out of the Pakistan series for IPL 2021.

Ahead of the all-important T20 World Cup 2021, the New Zealand cricket team will square off against Bangladesh and Pakistan in a white-ball series between September 1 and October 3. While Pakistan will have their first-choice players for the series, New Zealand will be missing out on the services of 7 players who are in the WC squad as they will participate in IPL 2021 once it resumes which was criticized by Inzamam-ul-Haq.

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

Inzamam-ul-Haq: Pakistan Team Not Getting Proper Practice As They Aren’t Getting To Play Against Main Squads

New Zealand Cricket has released its players for the 2nd half of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 and 7 players, including skipper Kane Williamson, will be in UAE to take part in the T20 league.

Upset with NZ players pulling out of the Pakistan series to play IPL, former captain Inzamam-ul-Haq has lashed out at ICC and questioned its silence on the matter. As per Inzamam-ul-Haq, the players are giving more importance to private leagues instead of international cricket.

“Wherever the Pakistan team is going, they are not getting a chance to play against the main players. When we went to South Africa in April, they sent their players for the IPL. With the upcoming NZ series in Pakistan, eight NZ players have opted out of the tour to play IPL. Even in the recent England tour, the whole England team got changed due to COVID-19 in the camp,” Inzamam-ul-Haq said on his Youtube channel.

“I feel that the Pakistan team is not getting proper practice because they are not getting to play against the main players. What is the ICC doing? What message are they trying to give? Players are giving importance to private leagues and not international cricket. It’s like degrading international cricket. If you see the whole sequence, it’s happening only against Pakistan,” Inzamam-ul-Haq added.

New Zealand batsman Tom Latham
New Zealand batsman Tom Latham (Photo: AFP)

Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, Lockie Ferguson, Jimmy Neesham, Mitchell Santner, and Tim Seifert are other players who have been released by NZC.  Tom Latham will be leading NZ in both series.  Interestingly, he isn’t part of the T20 World Cup squad.

The 2nd phase of IPL 2021 will be played from September 19 to October 15 in the UAE. The T20 World Cup 2021 kicks off on October 17.  Following the ICC event, the NZ players will travel to India for T20I and Test series against the hosts.

Tom Latham To Lead New Zealand On Limited Overs Tours Of Pakistan And Bangladesh

Tom Latham will lead New Zealand in the absence of Kane Williamson on their white-ball tours of Pakistan and Bangladesh starting September.  The opener will stand in as leader on both tours across white-ball formats.  New Zealand takes on Bangladesh in five T20Is in September, followed by three ODIs and five T20Is in Pakistan.

New Zealand has also named 15 member squad for the forthcoming T20 World Cup under the leadership of Kane Williamson. Ross Taylor, the veteran Kiwi batsman, and all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme are the major exclusions from the squad. Ross Taylor. (Source: Twitter)

Ross Taylor. (Source: Twitter)

Todd Astle was picked along with two other spinners in the squad – legspinner Ish Sodhi and left-arm spinning allrounder Mitchell Santner. Trent Boult, Kyle Jamieson, Lockie Ferguson, Tim Southee will lead Kiwi’s pace attack. The same squad will also tour India later this year for three T20Is.

Adam Milne has been selected as the 16th man in the T20 World Cup squad as an injury cover.  New Zealand will make their first trip to Pakistan in 18 years this September to play three ODIs and five T20Is in the lead-up to the T20 World Cup that kickstarts on October 17.
New Zealand last toured Pakistan in November 2003 when they played five ODIs. A year before, their last Test appearance in Pakistan was at the Gaddafi Stadium in May 2002, which is remembered for Inzamam-ul-Haq’s 329 and Shoaib Akhtar’s six for 11 in the first innings that set the platform for an innings and 324-run victory.

New Zealand T20 World Cup squad: 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).

Squad for Bangladesh T20Is and Pakistan ODIs: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Finn Allen, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell (wk), Doug Bracewell, Colin de Grandhomme, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry (ODI only), Scott Kuggeleijn, Cole McConchie, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Rachin Ravindra, Ben Sears (T20 only), Blair Tickner, Will Young.
Squad for Pakistan T20Is: Tom Latham (capt, wk), Finn Allen, Todd Astle, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell (wk), Mark Chapman, Colin de Grandhomme, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Daryl Mitchell, Ajaz Patel, Ish Sodhi, Ben Sears, Blair Tickner, Will Young.
New Zealand Cricket Team
New Zealand Cricket Team-AFP
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New Zealand Cricket Confirms Kane Williamson, James Neesham, And Lockie Ferguson Will Feature In The IPL 2021 2nd Phase

New Zealand Cricket’s (NZC) chief David White has confirmed the participation of New Zealand cricketers in the upcoming second phase of IPL 2021. Over the last few days, there have been several speculations on this topic, given that the Kiwis are to tour Pakistan in the September-October window.

With this tour clashing with the recently released schedule for the second phase of IPL 2021, many opined that the likes of Kane Williamson, Trent Boult, James Neesham, and others would not take part in the elite T20 tournament.

Kane Williamson of Sunrisers Hyderabad
Kane Williamson of Sunrisers Hyderabad

New Zealand Cricket Confirms Kane Williamson, James Neesham, And Lockie Ferguson Will Feature In The IPL 2021 2nd Phase

Further doubts were raised about their availability after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) requested two additional T20I matches apart from the already planned three ODIs and three T20Is. However, David White stated that these cricketers would give precedence to the IPL to be played in the UAE, the same place where the upcoming T20 World Cup will be held.

“New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson, Trent Boult, James Neesham, and Lockie Ferguson will feature in the second phase of the IPL 2021 in the UAE,” David White said as quoted by GeoTV.

New Zealand Cricketers In IPL 2021 (Picture Credit: BCCI/IPL)
New Zealand Cricketers In IPL 2021 (Picture Credit: BCCI/IPL)

New Zealand Players in IPL 2021: Kane Williamson (Sunrisers Hyderabad), Adam Milne (Mumbai Indians), Trent Boult (Mumbai Indians), Mitchell Santner (Chennai Super Kings), Lockie Ferguson (Kolkata Knight Riders), Tim Seifert (Kolkata Knight Riders), Finn Allen (Royal Challengers Bangalore), Kyle Jamieson (Royal Challengers Bangalore).

The IPL bound players include the likes of Kyle Jamieson, Trent Boult, Kane Williamson, Lockie Ferguson, Jimmy Neesham, Tim Seifert, and Finn Allen. The Blackcaps will open their new WTC campaign (2021-23) against India. The Kiwis did not lose a single Test to Virat Kohli’s men in the first edition of the tournament. The Blackcaps will play its first home series(2 Tests) of the new WTC tournament versus Bangladesh.

BCCI In Talks With Cricket Australia And England And Wales Cricket Board To Come To A Consensus Regarding Players’ Availability

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is also in talks with Cricket Australia (CA) and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to come to a consensus about their players’ availability.

“We are much relieved now. BCCI are in talks with English and Australian boards to come to a consensus regarding this. Given April and May are earmarked for the IPL, they are right to raise their own objections, but we are now confirmed to witness New Zealand players in action,” one of the franchise officials told Cricket.com last month after hearing the rumours.

New Zealand have not toured Pakistan since December 2003 Getty Images
New Zealand have not toured Pakistan since December 2003 Getty Images

The second phase of IPL 2021 is scheduled to begin on September 19 and will close with the final on October 15. New Zealand is likely to tour Pakistan for a limited-overs series just before the T20 World Cup. The last time Blackcaps toured Pakistan was in 2003, where they were white-washed in the five-match ODI series.

India Squad For Sri Lanka Tour (Image: BCCI)
India Squad For Sri Lanka Tour (Image: BCCI)
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India vs Sri Lanka 2021: If Top 3 Batsmen Fire, India Can Seal Win – Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra, a former opener turned commentator feels that while Sri Lanka has a definite advantage going into the deciding T20I, Team India can still triumph if the top 3 in their batting line-up rise to the occasion.

Team India and Sri Lanka will meet in the deciding T20I on Thursday after the hosts defeated a weak Indian outfit in the second game on Wednesday. The visitors were forced to play with just five batsmen, with others put in isolation after all-rounder Krunal Pandya tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday ruling 9 players out from the last 2 T20Is.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra: India Is Weak In The Batting Department But Can Win If Their Top 3 Batsmen Fire

Speaking on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra admitted that it will be a tough task for Team India to beat Sri Lanka considering the lack of depth in their batting.

Aakash Chopra stated: “Due to the extraordinary circumstances, Team India are weak in the batting. If you look at the batting line-up available for Team India, Shikhar Dhawan has Ruturaj Gaikwad as opening partner followed by Devdutt Padikkal, Sanju Samson, Nitish Rana and then Bhuvneshwar Kumar.”

Speaking about the lack of genuine batsmen in the starting XI in the 2nd T20I, Aakash Chopra went on to say that this is not really a batting line-up as it’s not yet proven and cannot be expected to win matches immediately.

Aakash Chopra said; “That’s not really a batting lineup. There is no depth in it. Yes, there is quality but it is not proven. These youngsters have only just entered international cricket. You cannot expect them to win matches immediately. Of course, we need to be hopeful but Sri Lanka definitely have the edge now.”

Shikhar Dhawan
Shikhar Dhawan (Getty Images)(HT_PRINT)

Aakash Chopra, however, added that all is not lost for Team India. Giving the example of Sunrisers Hyderabad, he pointed out that T20 games can be won with a solid top 3.

Aakash Chopra elaborated: “I am sure what Rahul (Dravid) will be telling everyone is that in T20 matches, if the top 3 perform well, then you don’t need a lot from those batting at 5,6 and 7.”

Aakash Chopra talked about how Shikhar Dhawan, David Warner, and Kane Williamson helped the Sunrisers Hyderabad win matches in the IPL in the past, despite having a fragile lower-middle order.

“Take the case of Sunrisers Hyderabad. When Dhawan was playing for them, the top three – Dhawan, David Warner and Kane Williamson – mostly did the job for them. If Team India score 150 batting first, they can still beat Sri Lanka. The visitors will bat if they win the toss. And if they lose, the Lankans are going to send Team India into bat.”

India named 4 T20I debutants in Nitish Rana, Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, and Chetan Sakariya for the 2nd T20I match. While debutants-opener Ruturaj Gaikwad perished after making an 18-ball 21, Devdutt Padikkal, who walked in at number three, departed after making a quick-fire 29 off 23 balls as India lost the match by four wickets.

Put into bat, India was restricted to a modest 132 for 5 with skipper Shikhar Dhawan top-scoring with 40. The hosts then chased down the target with four wickets in hand and two balls to spare with Dhananjaya de Silva hitting a match-winning unbeaten 40.

Shikhar Dhawan Is Proud Of Young Squad Despite Suffering Loss

Reflecting on the loss in the 2nd T20I, Team India skipper Shikhar Dhawan admitted that the side did not put up enough runs on the board. He, however, praised the young side for putting up a tough fight and making life difficult for Sri Lanka.

Shikhar Dhawan said at the post-match conference: “The surface had turn, and it was stopping a bit. Of course, we knew one batsman was short, and we knew we had to construct the innings smartly, and we had to content ourselves at some point. We were 10-15 runs short.”

Krunal Pandya. (Photo: Twitter)
Krunal Pandya. (Photo: Twitter)

Shikhar Dhawan credited the fighting attitude of his young team.

He said: “However, I am very proud of the boys because we gave a very good fight. That never-say-die attitude is amazing. Hats off to the boys for taking the game to the last game over defending just 132. Credit to both bowlers and batters.”

Prithvi Shaw, Suryakumar Yadav, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Ishan Kishan, Yuzvendra Chahal, K Gowtham, and Deepak Chahar are the eight players identified as close contacts of Krunal Pandya, who tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday. Although all eight have tested negative for the virus, they have still been ruled out of the ongoing T20I series against Sri Lanka.

IPL Trophy. (BCCI/IPL Photo)
IPL Trophy. (BCCI/IPL Photo)
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IPL 2021 Will Resume With A Clash Between CSK And MI On September 19 In Dubai

Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 season, which was suspended earlier this year because of the Covid-19 second wave and bio bubble breach, will resume with a clash between the 3 times IPL winners Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI) on September 19, sources have confirmed. The first match of the remainder of the season will be played in Dubai.

The 31 remaining matches of IPL 2021 will be played at three venues — Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Sharjah — with Dubai set to host the final on October 15. While Dubai will host the first qualifier on October 10, the eliminator and second qualifier will be played in Sharjah on October 11 and 13 respectively.

Skippers of Chennai Super Kings (CSK) MS Dhoni and Mumbai Indians (MI) Rohit Sharma. Credit: PTI Photo
Skippers of Chennai Super Kings (CSK) MS Dhoni and Mumbai Indians (MI) Rohit Sharma. Credit: PTI Photo

Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 Season To Resume With CSK-MI Match

Earlier this year, BCCI had been forced to postpone the IPL 2021 after multiple players and support staff tested positive for Covid-19.

After the season was halted, the BCCI had in a press release stated, “The Indian Premier League Governing Council (IPL GC) and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in an emergency meeting have unanimously decided to postpone IPL 2021 season, with immediate effect.”

“The BCCI does not want to compromise on the safety of the players, support staff, and the other participants involved in organizing the IPL. This decision was taken keeping the safety, health, and well-being of all the stakeholders in mind.”

Reports had emerged earlier that the BCCI stands to lose over Rs 2,000 crore of the broadcast and sponsorship money following the midway postponement of the IPL 2021 season. The decision that the pending matches would be played in the UAE had been taken earlier at a Special General Meeting (SGM) of the BCCI.

After the meeting, the BCCI in a press release said: “The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Saturday announced to complete the remaining matches of VIVO Indian Premier League 2021 season in the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E) considering the monsoon season in India in the months of September-October this year.”

Wriddhiman Saha (Picture Credit: BCCI/IPL)
Wriddhiman Saha (Picture Credit: BCCI/IPL)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Saturday announced to complete the remaining matches of the IPL 2021 season in U.A.E considering the monsoon season in India in the months of September-October this year. But, the availability of foreign players remains a big headache for the Cricket Board.

The BCCI had to postpone the 14th edition of the lucrative tournament as the deadly second outbreak of the COVID-19 breached through the bubble. The likes of Varun Chakravarthy, Sandeep Warrier, Amit Mishra, Wriddhiman Saha, Lakshmipathy Balaji, Tim Seifert, and Michael Hussey tested positive for COVID-19.

Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Eoin Morgan, Trent Boult, And Kane Williamson May Remain Unavailable For IPL 2021 Phase 2 In The UAE

This is because a number of international players are likely to remain unavailable due to international commitments. Rajasthan Royals openers Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes are unlikely to be available for the remainder of IPL 2021. Jos Buttler had scored 254 runs in the first 7 matches, including a century.

Mumbai Indians could miss the services of New Zealand pace spearhead Trent Boult. Since Eoin Morgan is the captain of the KKR team, his absence could lead to big trouble for his franchise. CSK’s new recruit Moeen Ali who was phenomenal for the MS Dhoni’s squad may also miss the remainder of IPL.

Eoin Morgan
Eoin Morgan (Image Credit: Twitter)

SRH team management could be in a fix after removing David Warner from the captaincy role. Their newly-appointed skipper Kane Williamson might also be unavailable for IPL 2021 Phase 2.

Most Australian players, including all-rounders Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis, are likely to participate in the second phase of IPL 2021 when the tournament resumes in UAE. As for Pat Cummins, who had made himself unavailable for the T20 league well in advance, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) would have to do without the services of their most expensive player for the remaining games of the season.

Royal Challengers Bangalore all-rounder Washington Sundar is likely to be ruled out of the second phase of Indian Premier League 2021. As expected, Steve Smith is all set to miss out on the 2nd phase of IPL 2021 in UAE. One of the world’s most prolific batsmen will not be available to Delhi Capitals for the 2nd leg of IPL

International Cricket Council – AFP File Photo
International Cricket Council – AFP File Photo
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International Cricket Council Allots The Same Number Of Points For Every Test In 2nd Edition Of WTC (2021-23)

International Cricket Council [ICC] has confirmed the points system for the second edition of the ICC World Test Championship [WTC] (2021-23) as well as the fixtures that will take place during the two-year cycle, commencing August 04 with India playing against hosts England in a 5 Test affair.

Just like the previous cycle, the upcoming two-year phase will see nine International Cricket Council Full-member teams play a total of six Test series- three at home and three away- of varying lengths with the cut-off date being March 31. 2023.

International Cricket Council [ICC] World Test Championship [WTC]
International Cricket Council [ICC] World Test Championship [WTC]

International Cricket Council Allots The Same Number Of Points For Every Test

However, unlike the previous WTC cycle where the maximum points for every series regardless of its length were fixed- 120, this time, the International Cricket Council has decided to allow the same number of points for every Test. As per the updated system, each Test match will now carry a weightage of 12 points while a drawn and tied Test will fetch 4 and 6 points respectively.

However, the standing in the points table, just like the inaugural cycle, will be determined on percentage points accumulated.

Virat Kohli, Joe Root
Virat Kohli, Joe Root

The second WTC cycle will commence from August 04 when the runners-up of the inaugural cycle, India, locks horns with Joe Root’s England in the first Test of a five-match series. New Zealand is, of course, the defending champions, having beaten India in the inaugural final last month.

Meanwhile, International Cricket Council Acting CEO George Allardice has said that the changes have been made in order to simplify the points system besides taking learnings from the Covid-forced disruptions last year.

“We received feedback that the previous points system needed to be simplified. The Cricket Committee took this into consideration when proposing a new, standardized points system for each match.

“During the pandemic, we had to change to ranking teams on the points table using the percentage of available points won by each team, since all series could not be completed. ” International Cricket Council Acting CEO George Allardice said.

The cycle that runs from August 2021 to June 2023 will see just two series of five matches – the upcoming England and India Tests and the Ashes in December this year. Australia’s tour of India in 2022 will be the only series of the cycle to have four Tests. Overall, there will be seven three-match Test series and 13 two-match Test series.

Skippers Kane Williamson, Virat Kohli, And Joe Root Opens Up On Previous WTC And Next One

The winning captain of the inaugural WTC, Kane Williamson, said that it was pretty special to win the coveted price last month and he is already looking forward to defending the title over the course of the next two years.

“It was obviously pretty special to win the inaugural WTC and it’s exciting to now look ahead to the second edition. The WTC has certainly added more context and brought new meaning to Test cricket and it was awesome to see the interest that was generated around the Final against India.

“We know trying to defend the title will be a huge challenge, but our focus will be on making sure we prepare as well as we can for the tours ahead and trying to maintain our level of performance.”Kane said.

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 International Cricket Council’s World Test Championship. Photograph: John Sibley/Reuters

Meanwhile, Indian captain Virat Kohli said that the inaugural WTC captured the imagination of fans around the world and it was a great feeling for him and his team to play the first-ever final of the championship. He said that the team is looking forward to regrouping after a disappointing end when they lock horns with England.

“It was great to have played the final of the WTC against New Zealand in what was a memorable contest. Not just the final, we saw the determination of players throughout the first edition of the championship. The following of cricket lovers too was great to see, and I am sure they will all be waiting eagerly for the second edition. We will regroup with new energy for the next cycle starting with our series against England, hoping to give our fans a lot to cheer about,” he said.

Joe Root, on the other hand, expressed his disappointment at the fact that England barely missed out on qualification last year. He, however, added that playing against the finalists of the last edition in India in their first WTC-2 assignment will be a great chance for them to test themselves against a quality side.

 “We start our campaign against the finalists of last time, which is an interesting challenge straight away. India is a fine all-round side and it would be good to test them in our home conditions. We narrowly missed out on qualifying for the final last time and are looking to do better this time. Test cricket is a format we all want to excel in and with points at stake for each match, everyone has to be at their best all the time,”he said.

India plays England(away), New Zealand(home), South Africa (away), Sri Lanka(home), Australia(home), and Bangladesh(away) in the International Cricket Council’s World Test Championship’s 2nd edition.

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