The West Indies are expected to embark on a tour of New Zealand in the coming months after the country’s government gave the approval for quarantine arrangements to the cricket board.

The West Indies became one of the first teams to resume international cricket, in wake of the coronavirus pandemic, when they toured England in August.  The entirety of the tour was conducted within a biosecure environment.  New Zealand officials had said last month that they were examining the series with the hope of staging a similar version.  Pakistan is also expected to be invited to tour the country.

New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White said the tours would help the sport through the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s a huge boost for us, it’s our financial lifeline,” he told reporters on Friday. “International cricket funds the whole game of cricket in New Zealand, so it’s very, very important for us."

White said the teams would fly to Auckland then catch a charter to Christchurch, where they would stay in quarantine while training at NZC’s high-performance centre in Lincoln University. White said all players would follow health and testing protocols set down by the government.

“It’s not going to come cheap; we will be footing the bill but we are happy to do that and fully understand it’s a user-pays model.”

New Zealand has been one of the world's most successful nations at containing the new coronavirus and the country's borders remain closed to almost all visitors.

The West Indies Women lost the third Vitality T20 International match by 20 runs against England Women, at the Incora County Ground as part of the Sandals West Indies Women’s Tour of England 2020.

England Women won the toss and elected to bat first. West Indies Women made two changes with Chedean Nation and Sheneta Grimmond replacing Britney Cooper and Aaliyah Alleyne.

Shamilia Connell had the English batters on the backfoot early in the powerplay as she removed both openers, Tammy Beaumont and Danielle Wyatt in the third over, to register a much better performance in her opening spell that what she had in the second match last Wednesday.

Deandra Dottin returned to international bowling for the first time since February 2019 when the West Indies Women played three T20I matches in Karachi Pakistan. Dottin and the other West Indies bowlers were able to constrain the English batters for most of their innings, except for the nineteenth over, when they were able to score 17 runs off Stafanie Taylor.

England Women finished their innings on 154 for 6. Nat Sciver was their top scorer with 82 followed by captain Heather Knight with 29. Shamilia Connell was the pick of the West Indies bowlers, finishing with figures of 2 for 13 from three overs, followed by Deandra Dottin with 2 for 29.

Deandra Dottin once again started the West Indies run chase in expedient fashion as she notched four boundaries inside the powerplay. But, two quick wickets of Lee Ann Kirby and Shemaine Cambelle, saw the scoring rate dip just for a moment.  Hayley Matthews, batting at number four, and Dottin started the innings rebuild. The pair posted a 48-run partnership before Matthews was trapped lbw for 21.

Dottin in her prolific return to international cricket, reached 2500 T20 International runs on her way to a West Indies Women’s top-score of 63 off 56 deliveries, which included 9-fours and a six.

West Indies were at one stage 83 for 2 in the 13th over but lost momentum in the second half of the innings and finished on 134 for 5 – 20 runs short of the target. The win gave England an unassailable 3-0 lead with two more matches to be played on Monday night and Wednesday night at the same venue.

 Scores

West Indies Women 134 for 5 from 20 overs England’s 154 for 6 from 20 overs

 

Shubman Gill made a brilliant unbeaten half-century to steer Kolkata Knight Riders to a seven-wicket Indian Premier League win over Sunrisers Hyderabad on Saturday.

Both sides had lost their first game of the tournament and it was KKR who got up and running at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, where Sunrisers could only post 142-4 after David Warner won the toss and opted to bat.

Manish Pandey top scored with 51 from 38 balls and Warner made 36, but Pat Cummins (1-19) and Varun Chakravarthy (1-25) were the standout bowlers in a fine performance in the field from the Knight Riders.

KKR stayed ahead of the run-rate in reply, but there was work to do when they were 53-3 in the seventh over in Abu Dhabi.

Star spinner Rashid Khan trapped captain Dinesh Karthik leg before for a duck to leave the Knight Riders three down, Sunil Narine having also gone without scoring and Nitish Rana (26) caught behind off Thangarasu Natarajan.

Gill (70no from 62) and Eoin Morgan (42no off 29) then combined for a match-winning unbroken stand of 92 to get Kolkata home with two overs to spare.

That leaves Sunrisers as the only team without a point early in the tournament.

CUMMINS SPOILS BAIRSTOW'S BIRTHDAY

Jonny Bairstow was unable to celebrate his 31st birthday with an explosive knock, departing for only five off 10 balls.

The England batsman might have thought it was his day when he successfully reviewed after being given out to Cummins, but he was cleaned up off the next ball from the Australia quick.

Cummins, who went for 49 from three overs in a loss to Mumbai Indians three days earlier, was outstanding and deserved more than just the one wicket, bowling 11 dot balls in four excellent overs.

Bairstow's opening partner Warner was looking in great touch until he was caught and bowled by Chakravarthy.

 

YOUTH AND EXPERIENCE GET KKR HOME

The 21-year-old Gill reached his half-century off 42 balls and saw it through with great support from the vastly experienced Morgan.

Gill and England's ODI World Cup-winning captain Morgan both struck two sixes as they took the game away from Sunrisers.

The powerful Morgan finished the game in the style, dispatching Natarajan over long-on for six and hitting the next ball for four to finish it off.

Gill, who also found the rope five times, was named man of the match after giving another demonstration of his considerable promise.

West Indies Women interim coach Andre Coley has revealed that the team is still easing all-rounder Deandra Dottin back into full action, against England, after a lengthy injury layoff.

With scores of 69 and 38 in the T20 series so far, Dottin has looked anything but rusty.  Notably, however, the player is yet to have a turn with the ball.  Dottin, as she often has, would prove more than a valuable weapon for the West Indies with the ball as well.  In 115 matches, she has claimed 59 wickets.

Having suffered a serious injury to her right shoulder in early 2019, which required reconstructive surgery in June of last year, however, Coley insists the team is still doing recovery work with the all-rounder.

“She’s just recovered from injury.  It’s no secret that our players haven’t been able to do much for a very long time,” Coley said.

“Deandra is on a back to bowling program.  She started that whilst we were here, so she is still on that.  We need to make sure that she is 100 percent, to be able to bowl competitively.  She has been doing bowling work behind the scenes in training,” he added.

“We are comfortable in terms of where she is at, but we want to make sure that long term she is ok and she can bowl at the intensity she wants to consistently and not just for a game or two.”

 

Cricket Australia (CA) has announced the one-off Test against Afghanistan and the ODI series against New Zealand have been postponed due to the ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Australia were due to face Afghanistan in the longest format for the first time in Perth in November, but that one-off game will not go ahead as planned. 

The rescheduled IPL season - which is due to finish in early November - created issues over Australian players quarantining upon their return from the Twenty20 tournament in the United Arab Emirates. 

New Zealand's limited-overs tour in January 2021 has also been called off amid "the challenges around international travel and quarantine restrictions" caused by the global health pandemic. 

CA hopes to find new dates for the fixtures in the coming years, with the postponements meaning India will be the only international side to visit Australia during the 2020-21 season.

"Cricket Australia looks forward to working with our good friends at the Afghanistan Cricket Board and New Zealand Cricket to deliver the matches at a time when, hopefully, the restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic have eased," CA's interim CEO Nick Hockley said in a statement.

"We all worked incredibly hard to make the series happen this summer, but the challenges around international travel and quarantine restrictions ultimately convinced all parties that the series would need to be played at a later date.

"CA looks forward to welcoming the Indian men's team for a full schedule of matches this summer in what promises to be an incredible contest across all three formats.

"CA would also like to take this opportunity to thank our wonderful partners for their understanding and support as we have navigated the complexities of hosting international sport during a pandemic to deliver a thrilling summer across men's and women's cricket at international and domestic level."

Australia are due to face India in a four-Test series, as well as three one-dayers and a trio of Twenty20 fixtures. Details over the schedule are yet to be confirmed.

West Indies Women’s interim coach Andre Coley admits the team lost a bit of momentum after losing intensity during its unsuccessful runs chase against England on Wednesday.

In pursuit of England’s target of 151, the West Indies were at 71 for 1 at around the halfway point of the runs chase.  The team was anchored by a 61 run top-order partnership between captain Stafanie Taylor and Deandra Dottin.

Once Dottin was dismissed lbw, however, Taylor followed two overs later and a rapid collapse saw the team eventually all out for 104.  In the last 6.1 overs, the team nosedived from 72 for 1, to 96 for 8. 

“For this format of the game, the intensity is very important. We had that early on with that significant partnership between Deandra and Stephanie of 60-odd that really kept that momentum going,” Colley explained following the match.

“During that middle period, however, we actually dipped in terms of our intent and moved away from that intensity around scoring boundaries and that obviously led to us losing some momentum toward the end.  We needed to keep going to stay on pace with the required rate,” he added.

Even before that, however, the team must certainly be regretting not doing a bit better with the ball.  Having reduced England to 96 for 6, they let it slip in the last bowling five overs, and a 150-target was always going to be a tough task.

"In this game, we were able to pull things back in the middle.  Our spinners did well to pull back in the middle.  The last five overs was really what cost us, they scored 50 runs in the last five and that pushed them past a score we were looking at.”

West Indies all-rounder Jason Holder will get a chance to appear at this season’s India Premier League (IPL) after being earmarked to replace injured Australian Mitchell Marsh.

Marsh, who was drafted by Sunrisers Hyderabad, was ruled out of the tournament after injuring his ankle in the team’s first match of the season.

As a result, Holder, who will perhaps be looking to make up for a disappointing outing in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL), has been tipped to make his fourth IPL appearance.  It will be the second for the Sunrisers, but he has previously featured for the Chennai Super Kings and the Kolkata Knight Riders.

Holder, who was replaced as West Indies T20 captain by Kieron Pollard last year, had a base price of INR 75 lakh ($US100,000), in the December IPL auction but went unsold more than once.

In the most recent CPL campaign, he led the Barbados Tridents to a fifth-place finish in the six-team table. Holder scored 192 runs at a strike rate of 140.14, and also picked up ten wickets at an economy rate of 6.63.  He will be required to undergo a six-day quarantine before joining up with the rest of the team.

West Indies all-rounder Dwayne Bravo is expected to make his debut for Indian Premier League (IPL) team Chennai Super Kings by its fourth match, despite being declared fit enough to play.

The 36-year-old Bravo reported to the Super Kings IPL camp in Dubai with a knee injury, which he picked up during the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) earlier this month.  The player has, however, since been cleared to return to the line-up but based on an agreement with the management team the West Indian will not be back in the lineup early.

So far, the Super Kings have already played three IPL games.  In Bravo’s absence, Englishman Sam Curran has been performing the overseas allrounder's job well, for the moment.

Bravo made history during last month’s CPL after becoming the first player in history to take 500 T20 wickets.  In addition, his Trinbago Knight Riders captured a fourth title on the back of an unbeaten season.  Bravo, who leads the CPL with most wickets taken, is currently 5th on the list of most career wickets in the IPL with 147.  The list is topped by Sri Lanka’s Lasith Malinga who has claimed 172.  The West Indian, however, tops the list for most wickets claimed in a tournament, with 32, a feat he accomplished during the 2013 edition.

Cricket West Indies (CWI) has congratulated Stafanie Taylor on becoming the first West Indies women’s player to score 3,000 runs in T20 Internationals.

 

Stafanie Taylor scored her 3000th run on Wednesday but West Indies Women lost to England by 47 runs at Derby on Wednesday in the second of their five-match T20 Vitality Series.

They also lost the first match on Monday by a similar margin. However, this time the loss unfolded differently.

Chasing 152 for victory, the West Indies Women, with the score at 11, lost Hayley Matthews for three in the third over, caught off a leading edge by Heather Knight from a Katherine Brunt delivery.

However, the West Indies had a glimmer of hope when Deandra Dottin and Stafanie Taylor put together a partnership of 61 in nine overs to have the West Indies well-positioned at 71 for one in the 12th over.

That was also when things began to unravel for the West Indies as their next seven wickets to 32 runs to close at 104 for eight.

It began with the last ball of the 12th over when Dottin adjudged leg before wicket for 38 to Sarah Glenn’s quicker and fuller leg-break.

Six balls later, wicketkeeper Amy Jones, stumped Lee-Ann Kirby for one from a Mady Villiers delivery. 75 for three.

Six balls later, Jones was again in action, stumping Captain Stafanie Taylor - who had earlier scored her 3000th run - for 28 from a Glen delivery wide of the off-stump. 79 for four.

Shermaine Campbelle was the next wicket to fall, for five, after swinging Anya Shrubsole’s delivery to deep square leg where Fran Wilson held onto a running catch. It was then 89 for five.

Six balls later, Chinelle Henry was out lbw to Villiers for seven. 89 for six.

By the time Sophie Ecclestone bowled Britney Cooper for a duck to leave the West Indies were 91 for seven, the Caribbean side had lost six wickets for 19 runs from 33 balls and still needing 61 from the last 16 balls.

Shortly thereafter, Aaliyah Alleyne was trapped lbw by Ecclestone for five at 96 for eight.

It was left to Selman, who remained unbeaten on 6 and Afy Fletcher 4, to get the West Indies past the 100-run mark as the innings came to a close.

Villiers was the pick of the England bowlers taking 2 for 10 from three overs. Ecclestone (2 for 19) and Glenn (2 for 24) did their part to dismantling the West Indies batting line-up.

Earlier, England had smashed 52 runs off their last five overs to wrest control of the match from the West Indies, who had up to then, kept England’s batters reined in.

Having had England at 96 for six in the 15th over, Sarah Glen and Katherine Brunt attacked the bowling with great success. Together the pair added 46 runs before Selman bowled Brunt for 18 in the final over.

England had already taken full advantage of Shamilia Connell, whose last over, the 19th, went for 19 runs. Glenn slapped her for four over deep backward point and then followed up with a shot over the covers for three.

Brunt followed suit the next ball that yielded two runs. She then smashed the flustered Connell out to the deep extra cover boundary for four.

By the time Glen was run out for 26 off the last ball of the innings, the damage had already been done with England once again getting beyond 150 runs that once again proved to be more than enough.

It was a welcome fightback from England, who after 15 overs didn’t look likely to score 150.

As they did in the first match on Monday, England had a good start scoring 34 from the first four overs before Selman had Tammy Beaumont caught by Chinelle Henry for 21.

At 44 for one Danni Wyatt was run out for 14.

By then Stafanie Taylor (2 for 12) and Selman (2 for 32) had begun to squeeze the life out of the England batting.

However, Jones who scored 25 from just 20 balls sparked England’s revival that ultimately proved to be too much for the West Indies.

 

 

 

 

 West Indies Women bowler Shakera Selman has dismissed notions suggesting she is in the twilight of her career, insisting that she has instead only gotten better with age.

 The 31-year-old new ball bowler put in an impressive shift in the first T20 International against England on Monday.  The experienced seamster secured figures of 3-26 from her four overs– the second-best figures of her career – following 3-24 against New Zealand, at Invercargill, in 2014.

With a career spanning 12 years, Selman pointed to an improvement in her patience and working extra hard on mental skills as factors that have led to a recent resurgence.

“I think I’m actually peaking now at this later stage.  Funny enough, I think I have always bowled well but I never had the wickets that would quite justify that or really suggest that," Selman said in a recent interview with Windies Cricket.

"But, I’m very happy with the returns (At this stage). I think the hard work is finally paying off and I’m happy with where I am."

Additionally, she noted that increasing her discipline in exercise regimes, and maintaining appropriate nutrition have played a very important part in her continued success.  She also paid tribute to the coaches she has worked with over the years.

Rohit Sharma's rapid 80 steered Mumbai Indians to a convincing 49-run win over Kolkata Knight Riders in Wednesday's Indian Premier League clash.

The opener played a blinding captain's innings with his knock at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi coming off just 54 deliveries.

Rohit put on 90 runs with Suryakumar Yadav (47) for a second-wicket stand that frustrated the Knight Riders, who at least restricted Mumbai under 200.

Saurabh Tiwary (21) and Hardik Pandya (18) added valuable runs in a total of 195-5 that Kolkata never got near.

The impressive Jasprit Bumrah (2-32) dismissed Kolkata danger men Andre Russell (11) and Eoin Morgan (16) before they even got going.

Kolkata eventually posted 146-9 in reply, some way short of their target to start their campaign with a defeat, while Mumbai rebounded from an opening loss to Chennai Super Kings.


YOU SIXY THING, ROHIT

Rohit's knock included six sixes and three fours, with the unfortunate Kuldeep Yadav smacked straight over the ropes twice in the 14th over.

He now has 200 maximums in the IPL, 12 shy of MS Dhoni in third place on the all-time list, but still 126 short of leader Chris Gayle.


BUMRAH DOES THE BUSINESS

Trent Boult, James Pattinson and Rahul Chahar each also finished with two wickets in an all-round effort from Mumbai's bowling team.

Russell and Morgan were well capable of getting Kolkata, who had slipped to 77-4, back into the match but Bumrah broke up a potentially dangerous partnership in the 16th over.

Bumrah knocked back Russell's leg stump before Morgan edged behind, leaving Mumbai to close on a first victory in the UAE from six attempts.

West Indies women all-rounder Deandra Dottin expressed some amount of disappointment at not being able to carry the team over the line, in a loss against England, but insists it was good to be playing cricket again.

Dottin showed very little sign of rust in crafting an industrious 69 from 59 deliveries, in dogged pursuit of England’s total of 163.  She was, however, the team’s only batsman to reach double figures as the Windies eventually crashed 47 runs short of the total.  

"It's been a long time since we've played international cricket but we've been here for two and a half weeks and we've been preparing and I think we ticked our boxes, it was just a matter of execution and we didn't do that today with the bat or the ball but I think the girls were really happy to get out there and play some international and competitive cricket,” Dottin said after the game.

The allrounder has spent more time out of the game than most, having suffered a serious injury to her right shoulder in early 2019 and underwent reconstructive surgery in June of last year.  Having only recently returned to action earlier this year, the sport was halted by the pandemic.  The player, however, now seems to be on the verge of rediscovering her best form.

"The game plan was for me to bat through the innings and set up the game.  If it came down to the latter part, we could actually get a couple of big overs.  Unfortunately, England bowled very well, they used their variations very well, so we did not get the score we projected,” she added.

 Natalie Sciver and Sophie Eccleston each claimed two wickets as an economic England were found to be in a miserly mood.

 West Indies pace bowler Sheldon Cottrell did not make his debut for Kings XI Punjab in the team's Indian Premier League (IPL) opener but received a warm reception nonetheless after being given his cap by none other than T20 legend Chris Gayle.

In typically flamboyant style, Gayle welcomed his countryman to the team with a short march and salute.  The celebration style has been made popular by the fast bowler who treats fans to the salute every time that he takes a wicket.

The 31-year-old former soldier was bought for a whopping INR 8.5 crore ($US1,156,239) by Punjab during the IPL 2020 auction.  The player joined the IPL after taking part in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).  It was not smooth sailing for Kings XI on debut.   Chasing 158, Kings XI needed 13 from the last over bowled by Australia Marcus Stoinis. Mayank Agarwal started the over with a six followed by a couple and a four, thereby equalling the score.

Now, the KL Rahul-led side required just one run to win off three balls. But in a significant twist, Punjab failed to score. The game went to the Super Over where DC successfully defeated KXIP.  Gayle was also not a part of the team picked for the opener.

Sanju Samson and Steve Smith powered Rajasthan Royals to a 16-run victory over Chennai Super Kings in their opening fixture of the Indian Premier League season.

CSK kicked off the IPL's 13th season with a five-wicket win over Mumbai Indians, however, they were comfortably second best on Tuesday in Sharjah.

Samson and captain Smith laid the foundation for Rajasthan with a second-wicket partnership of 121 as they set CSK a target of 217.

Had CSK triumphed it would have marked the highest successful chase in IPL history.

However, they never came close to doing so despite an opening partnership of 56 between Shane Watson and Murali Vijay and a powerful 37-ball 72 from Faf du Plessis.

Three sixes in the final over from MS Dhoni saw the record for most maximums in an IPL match tied as the teams combined for 33.

A comfortable Rajasthan success did not appear on the cards when opener Yashasvi Jaiswal fell for six in the third over.

But Samson (74) and Smith (69) tipped the balance of the contest firmly in favour of Rajasthan.

Samson was in destructive form as he bludgeoned the CSK attack, a four and nine sixes marking a devastating 32-ball stay at the crease.

Lungi Ngidi dismissed Samson when a wide delivery outside off was hit to deep cover and David Miller was run out for a duck two balls later.

Smith held the innings together until he fell with 10 balls remaining, with Jofra Archer then adding the finishing touches as he struck Ngidi for four successive sixes - including two off no-balls - in a final over that went for 30.

Rahul Tewatia dealt with the dangerous Watson, whose 33 comprised of four sixes, sending a delivery crashing into his leg stump.

Shreyas Gopal removed Murali (21) five balls later before Tewatia had Sam Curran and Ruturaj Gaikwad stumped in successive deliveries.

Kedar Jadhav's (22) exit left an unlikely fightback on the shoulders of the experienced duo of Du Plessis and Dhoni.

Du Plessis did the heavy lifting in spectacular fashion, with three sixes in the 17th over giving CSK faint hope that was snuffed out when an Archer bouncer did him for pace.

 

Smith shows his class

Smith returned from a head injury suffered during Australia's recent limited-overs tour of England and did so in fine fashion, scoring his first half-century in any format since February.

Archer adds crucial runs

Archer's incredible final-over contribution made sure a mammoth total was out of reach for CSK and he then produced a brilliant bouncer to remove the in-form Du Plessis and put the contest to bed.

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