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Watch: Manish Pandey Remains Not Out Even After The Ball Hits The Wickets

India batsman Manish Pandey enjoyed a huge stroke of luck in the second T20 international against England on Sunday (January 29) as he escaped being bowled despite the ball hitting the stumps.

The dramatic incident happened in the 15th over when Pandey, looking to cut a Ben Stokes delivery, completely failed to make contact with the ball and it went on to hit the outside of the off stump. However, the Indian batsman was handed an astonishing reprieve when the bails did not come off despite being hit by the ball.

The electronic red bail light signalling contact had lit up when the ball struck the outside of the off stump, but Pandey could not be given out as per the rules. A shocked Ben Stokes was seen holding his head in astonishment while a lucky Pandey was seen smiling after the incident.

Here is a clip of the incident:

Well the incident turned out to be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the match as Pandey, who was batting on only 10 at that time, went on to score 30 to help India post 144. In reply, the visitors fell short by only five runs as India leveled the three-match series 1-1.

BCCI Declines NADA's Demand of Testing Indian Cricketers
CARDIFF, WALES - JUNE 20: The Indian team look on during the ICC Champions Trophy Semi Final match between India and Sri Lanka at SWALEC Stadium on June 20, 2013 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Matthew Lewis-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)
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India v England 2016: Probable India Squad For ODIs and T20Is

After crushing England in the Test series, the Indian team will look to overpower them in limited overs squad. Though there will be many changes in the squad of both the teams, but still one can expect Indian team to crush England in ODIs as well.

With Indian selectors yet to announce the limited overs squad, here is the predicted limited overs squad of Indian cricket team – 

Ranji Trophy
Ranji Trophy
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Ranji Trophy 2016/17: Nair, Rahul, Parthiv Fails On Domestic Return, Shahbaz Nadeem Snares A Fifer

It was a not a great day for the international players who were the part of Indian squad in the Test series against England.

Be it KL Rahul or Karu Nair, Manish Pandey or Parthiv Patel; all failed to contribute.

Here is summary of their performance in Ranji Trophy knockouts today –

Karnataka vs Tamil Nadu

Before the start of the day, it was the Tamil Nadu team which suffered a setback as they missed out on services of Murali Vijay and R Ashwin but as the day started and progressed, the Karnataka team, who was supposed to the dominating side on day one was on the back foot and was bundled out on a score of 88, just a few minutes after the Lunch break. Karnataka had a poor start as KL Rahul was dismissed in just the second over of the day on a score of four. Kaunain Abbas, who played 24 deliveries in his half hour stay at the crease was the next man to go without making any contribution.

Manish Pandey and opener R Samarth tried to recuperate the batting line up but the wicket of R Samarth was enough to dent their progress and within next 10 overs, half of Karnataka team was back in the pavilion. All eyes were on Karun Nair, who recently scored a triple century but he too disappointed as he went back to the pavilion with a score of 14 in his account. Riding on a six-fer from Aswin Crist, Tamil Nadu wrapped up Karnataka inning with a score of 88 on the board.

Tamil Nadu too lost some wickets when they came out to bat but Dinesh Karthik along with Vijay Shankar put a break on the fall of wickets.

It was a great day for Tamil Nadu on the field as they were able to dismiss the strong batting line-up of Karnataka on the first day itself and now also possess a crucial lead of 23 runs.

Meanwhile, Dinesh Karthik achieved big feet by marking his presence in his 100th Ranji Trophy game. He was felicitated before the start of the game along with L.P. Balaji, the former Indian player and now the bowling coach of Tamil Nadu.

Brief scores: Karnataka 88 (Manish Pandey 28; Aswin Crist 6-31) trail by 23 runs vs Tamil Nadu 111/4 (Vijay Shankar 34, Srinath Aravind 2-14) at Vizag. 

Mumbai vs Hyderabad

After an early stutter, the duo of Aditya Tare and Siddhesh Lad played a crucial role in getting the things in order as after electing to bat first, Mumbai had an awful start losing four wickets on a score of 34. The new opening pair of Praful Waghela and Kevin Almeida failed to provide a good start, Chama Milind took the advantage of new ball and soon toppled the Mumbai batting line up but Lad and Tare stood at the crease as a rock, not allowing any other wicket for next 40 overs. After taking Mumbai to a safe total, Tare was dismissed on a score of 73 but Lad continued to bat and was at a score of 101* at stumps. Mumbai is in a safe position now as they have put up 250 runs on the board at the loss of five wickets.

Brief Scores: Mumbai 250/5 (Siddesh Lad 101*, Aditya Tare 73; Chama Milind  3-46) at Raipur.

Gujarat vs Odisha

Gujarat had huge expectations from their captain Parthiv Patel but he failed to deliver as the skipper could just make 12 runs, on an awkward surface, that came under scanner after it behaved awkwardly and the ball hit Parthiv Patel on his arm.

The play was halted for an hour before a light roller was taken to settle down the awkward part of the pitch. On a bowler friendly wicket, Odisha bowlers made strong in-rods before Chirag Gandhi and Rush Kalaria held the crease for last 48 overs of the day, not allowing Odisha to dominate the day. Gujarat is at a score of 197/6 and we can expect Gujarat bowlers to reply in the same way, taking equal advantage from the surface.

Brief Scores: Gujarat 197/6 (Chirag Gandhi 62*, Rush Kalaria 59*; Deepak Behera 3-36) at Jaipur.

Haryana vs Jharkhand (The Match is Televised on Star Sports)

It was an evenly poised day at Moti Bagh Stadium in Vadodara where the game swung like a pendulum, sometimes it was in favour Haryana while sometimes it looked like Jharkhand holds an edge. We saw mixed results in the day as Jharkhand took regular wickets in the day and when it looked like they hold an edge, Haryana batsmen came up with a partnership.

We saw the same thing happen not just once or twice but continued throughout the day. It was a great day for cricket where the pitch was fair to both the teams.

For Haryana, Rajat Paliwal topped the charts with a score of 42. Chaitanya Bishnoi also played an innings of 41 but as said, bowlers took wickets at regular intervals and never allowed Haryana to dominate the game. Same was the with batsmen, they never allowed the bowler to suppress them, in any case.

Shahbaz Nadeem, the Jharkhand all-rounder shone with the ball taking five wickets on the first day of the game.

Brief scores: Haryana 251/7 (Rajat Paliwal 42, Chaitanya Bishnoi 4; Shahbaz Nadeem 5-75) vs Jharkhand at Vadodara. 

Karnataka Ranji team.
Karnataka Ranji team.
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Ranji Trophy 2016/17: KL Rahul, Karun Nair Return To Karnataka Squad, Robin Uthappa Dropped

Karun Nair, KL Rahul and Manish Pandey have returned to Karnataka’s squad for their Ranji Trophy 2016/17 knockout game against Tamil Nadu while Robin Uthappa, who has had an average season so far, has been dropped from the 16-man squad.

Nair on Monday became the second Indian to score a triple-century in Tests while Rahul, who missed his first double-century but just one run in the ongoing Chennai Test vs England. On the other hand, Uthappa being dropped highlights the fact that selectors have given utmost importance to form than past reputation.

“With the three batsmen back, the selection was a tough process. We collectively decided to rest Robin since we couldn’t play him in the XI,” said R Sudhakar Rao, Karnataka State Cricket Association (KSCA) chairman of selectors.

“The newcomers have done well and it would have been unfair to drop them, so we have taken the decision keeping the future of Karnataka cricket in mind.”

“There is nothing wrong with his batting, but sometimes numbers matter, especially when people are waiting to get a chance. It’s just the numbers,” said head coach J Arunkumar.

“Last year, at the start of the season, he was trying out a few things. After a point, I told him to stop focussing on that and focus on making runs. Soon after that, he started making runs. Even this season, I was hoping something like that would happen.

“We thought that one game before the knockout we should try somebody out just in case of an injury, or if somebody is not allowed to play because of national duty. We just wanted to try Pavan Deshpande and Arjun Hoysala to see if the guys belonged in that space and if they are confident enough.

“We wanted to make sure we are going in prepared for the knockout stages. Otherwise, Robin is batting really well. He’s getting off to great starts and he’s getting out to some odd balls. It’s sad that we have to rest a big player. We need big players like him because they have been there and done that,” he concluded.

So far this season, Uthappa has been able to score just 328 runs in 12 innings at an average of 27.33.

R. Vinay Kumar will lead the team in the quarter-final against Tamil Nadu. The team also includes the likes of Mayank Agarwal, Stuart Binny, Abhimanyu Mithun, Srinath Arvind and all-rounder Shreyas Gopal. The knockout game will be played at Vizag from December 23.

Tamil Nadu squad will also have the services of Ravichandran Ashwin and Murali Vijay.

Karnataka squad for Quarter Finals –

R Vinay Kumar (C), KL Rahul, R Samarth, Manish Pandey, Karun Nair (VC), Stuart Binny, Mir Kaunain Abbas, CM Gautam, Abhimanyu Mithun, Srinath Arvind, KGowtham, Shreyas Gopal, Pavan Deshpande, Abrar Kazi, David Mathias, Mayank Agarwal.

Indian captain Virat Kohli celebrates with his team-mates after winning the Mumbai Test against England.
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Video – Team India Hit The Nets After Series Win At Wankhede

Virat Kohli-led Indian side seems absolutely unstoppable at the moment as the unit ferociously mauled England at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. As a result of the victory by an innings and 36 runs, the hosts registered their first series win over England since December 2008. Post India’s victory early on the fifth day, an interesting aspect was witnessed at the stadium.

When a team completes a famous victory, one expects the members of the squad to enjoy and have a blast. That however, wasn’t the case with the Indian side, as few individuals were ready to hit the nets right after the game ended. In a video released by the BCCI on its official Twitter account, batsman Manish Pandey was seen sweating it out in the nets. Coach Anil Kumble too was seen trying his leg spinners to the batsman.

Below is the video released by the BCCI.

Post India’s win, coach Anil Kumble was a delighted individual as he heaped praises on his side for a dominating performance. In a chat, Kumble went on to say the current Indian team could go on to become the strongest Test side of all time.

“You can’t compare different eras and different teams, but this team is the No. 1 team and we have the potential to become the best ever Test team in terms of results,” said Kumble. “They have done that in the last couple of years. Everyone has contributed to the team’s cause and even I am privileged to be part of this set-up as well. Hopefully it’s 4-0 in Chennai. We’ll have a look at the pitch and take a call,” Kumble said.

Karnataka Ranji team.
Karnataka Ranji team.
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Ranji Trophy 2016/17: Karnataka Declined A Substitute For Manish Pandey

Maharashtra declined Karnataka’s request to incur the services of a substitute during their Ranji Trophy game on Wednesday. The situation was created after Manish Pandey was called to the Indian team as a replacement of Ajinkya Rahane, who injured his index finger during the practice session ahead of the Wankhede Test. It was the first day of the Ranji game between Maharashtra and Karnataka when news came that Pandey and Shardul Thakur have been named as replacements.

According to a report, a hopeful Karnataka team requested match referee Pranab Roy if they can incur services of another player in place of Pandey. Pranab Roy fast forwarded the case to BCCI’s general manager (cricket operations) MV Sridhar, who advised them to ask Maharashtra captain Swapnil Gugale, who declined Karnataka’s request, “There was no question of allowing a replacement considering the situation we are in. We are playing for six points to qualify for the quarterfinals,” Gugale was quoted as saying by The Hindu.

Gugale’s worry is explicable as Maharashtra needs six points from this game to qualify for knockouts but the way they played in the first innings, there are chances of them losing the game may be before the completion of the fourth day.

There are also reports that Manish Pandey, who joined Indian team a night before the start of the game, had an onerous journey as he first travelled to Delhi by road and then boarded a flight to Mumbai. However, there might be a slight chance that Indian team management might release him as he has not featured in playing XI.

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IND v ENG 2016: Manish Pandey Replaces Ajinkya Rahane, Shardul Thakur Stand-By For Shami

The Indian middle order batsman, Ajinkya Rahane, has been ruled out of the Test series against England as he has sustained an avulsion fracture on his right index finger after being hit by a ball during the practice session, a day ahead of the start of Wankhede Test. The Karnataka batsman Manish Pandey, who has played 12 ODIs for India has replaced him for the remainder of the series.

Shardul Thakur, who was the part of the Indian team on their tour to West Indies, has also been called up as the backup of Mohammed Shami who is doubtful for the fourth Test due to a sore knee. Virat Kohli said in press conference that they would not like to risk Mohammed Shami for this Test and a decision on his participation in the Test will be taken on the day of the Test match.

Both Pandey and Thakur are currently playing Ranji Trophy. Pandey is playing the last round for Karnataka against Maharashtra at Mohali whereas Thakur is leading Mumbai pace attack against Punjab at Rajkot. Both have been asked to arrive at a short notice and there are chances that both of them will warm the bench as KL Rahul will be replacing Ajinkya Rahane whereas Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the front line choice ahead of Shardul Thakur.

An injury to Rahane has now proved to be a boon for Karun Nair as now he will retain his place in the team and will get a chance to redeem himself at the highest level of the game.

The fourth Test at Mumbai starts from December 8 and it will be the first time in the history of 84 years of international cricket when India will be playing without a Mumbaikar in Mumbai.

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5 players who deserved a chance in the Indian team for the series against New Zealand

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Monday (September 12) announced the 15-man squad for the upcoming four-match Test series against New Zealand. While there was no new inclusion to the squad that was recently sent to West Indies for four-match Test series, Stuart Binny and uncapped pacer Shardul Thakur were dropped from the squad. The Indian team performed well in the Caribbeans and won the series 2-0.

Well, it is never a good idea to break a winning combination but good performers should always be rewarded for their hard work and so here is the list of five players who should have been considered by the selectors for the New Zealand series.

5. Kuldeep Yadav:

Image result for kuldeep yadav duleep trophy

The left-arm spinner is one of the best performers in the ongoing Duleep Trophy where he has scalped 14 wickets so far in only 4 innings. He also boasts of figures of 6/88 in the first match of the tournament.

With a long season ahead, Kuldeep Yadav would have brought a good variety in India’s bowling department and the selectors should have given them a chance against the Kiwis before the big series against England and Australia.

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Pacers keep India A hopes alive on a rain-marred day 3

For the third consecutive day, the bowlers were the dominant force in the game with pacers making merry with the pink ball at the Allan Border field. A total number of 12 wickets fell on day 3 of the first unofficial Test match.

Kicking off the day with a score of 44/2, the India A had a jittery start as they lost the wicket of Manish Pandey who just added 4 runs to his yesterday’s score. India A suffered few more blows as the overnight batsman Shreyas Iyer left the crease after adding 28 runs with Karun Nair. Captain Naman Ojha soon followed him as he was dismissed for a duck.

Nair and Pandya could not resist the fiery bowling attack and both of them edged the ball behind the wicket to get dismissed. The Haryana all-rounder Jayant Yadav came to rescue India A, this time with the bat scoring 46 runs. He stitched small partnerships with the tailenders and dragged the team’s total to a score of 156.

His dismissal marked the end of India A on a total of just 156. Soon the Australia A batsmen were out in the middle to chase the target of 159. The Aussie openers Joe Burns and Cameron Bancroft were looking to quite defensive. Shardul Thakur, however, made an immediate impact dismissing Joe Burns and Travis Dean on consecutive deliveries.

The Australia A batsmen once again were trying to stamp their foot on the crease but Hardik Pandya pierced in with a much-needed breakthrough dismissing captain Peter Handscomb. Varun Aaron added to the woes of the hosts dismissing Marcus Stoinis just 3 overs before the tea.

The match could not be resumed after tea due to persistent rain. Australia A need exactly 100 runs to win the first unofficial Test whereas the India A needs a good spell from their bowlers as they do not have many runs to play with.

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India A loses openers on a day dominated by bowlers

The second day of the first unofficial Test match was once again dominated by the bowlers as a total number of 12 wickets tumbled on day 2 with India A getting  a morsel over Australia A.

Australia A had a tough start to the day as they lost two early wickets in form of opener Cameron Bancroft and Travis Dean. Cameron Bancroft could not add even a single run to his yesterday’s total whereas Dean was dismissed on the score of 1. Joe Burns and Peter Handscomb came to rescue the team and shared 118 runs for the third wicket. Indian bowlers toiled for 25 overs to get the third wicket.

Finally, the moment came for Indian bowlers as Hardik Pandya drew an edge of Joe Burns bat which landed safely in the hands of Karun Nair who was ready there at the slips. Peter Handscomb was the next unlucky man to be dismissed as he was turned back by the runner at the other end, Jayant Yadav had ample time to dislodge the bails. Handscomb was dismissed for 87.

The last five batsmen could just add 41 runs to the teams total and the Australia A fell short by a margin of 2 runs. Jayan Yadav and Varun Aaron both scalped 3 wickets; Hardik Pandya affected two blows whereas Shardul Thakur could just get one wicket.

The India A openers were again out on the crease to play the remaining 20 over of the day. Worrall and Moody provided a great start to Australia A sending both the openers back to the pavilion at early scores. The day was cut short due to rain in the later part of the day.

India A is currently leading by 46 runs with 8 wickets in hands, the Indian middle order will have a huge responsibility to push the score somewhat around 250 or 275 so as to put  a defending total on the board.