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JK team knocked out of Vijay Hazare Trophy

After losing six out of nine matches

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Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir senior cricket team were knocked out of Vijay Hazare Trophy after losing six out of nine matches played in the trophy.

JK team only won three matches in the tournament against Assam, Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan by VJD method in a rain affected match.

These teams are also behind the Jammu and Kashmir in the group tally as Jammu and Kashmir team got 6th place in group B.

 

The senior cricket was defeated by Bengal, Tripura, Haryana, Jharkhand, Gujarat and Services respectively, heavily exposing the appalling performance of the team in all the facets of the game.

The score-line of JK team in all these six matches displays the grim picture of batting line up which needs to be rectified.

Owing its poor shot selection throughout the campaign, the team has completely failed to play some mature and clinical cricket.

JK batsmen gave away their wickets easily. The maximum dismissal of JK batsmen were caused due to playing lofty and desperate shots. The JK batters were caught out 39 times while 23 times the batsmen became prey of leg before wicket (LBW).

Apart from poor shot selection, miscommunication during running between the wickets was also apparent as the team lost five batsmen through run-outs that too at crucial junctures. Besides that, nine batsmen were clean bowled while two batsmen fell into prey of stumping during the series.

The techniques and temperament of JK team have raised several questions besides the skipper ParvezRasool and mentor-cum player IrfanPathan have been woefully out of form with the bat.

Although, in one of the match skipper Parvez scored unbeaten 71 runs which helped the team to register their second victory in the campaign against Tamil Nadu.

The team combinations, lack of sound atmosphere and trust among the players further added woes to the JK team.

 

Despite understanding the gravity of situation, the continuous experiments in the bating line up has proved catastrophic which further added their miseries.

 

The batting order has been on threshold. Apart from fiddling with the batting order, the team failed to remain consistent throughout the campaign.

Moreover, Manzoor Ahmad Dar (Pandav), who was bought by Kings XI Punjab in much popular Indian Premier League (IPL) not only shared dressing room with the International cricketers but also practiced with world class Cricketers for approximately 50 days, played only three matches out of nine in Vijay Hazare campaign, that too on the position which is not for his forte.

In first two matches, Manzoor was demoted to number eight and number nine respectively in batting order, where he was not able to score runs.

After experimenting with his batting order, Manzoor was altogether dropped from the playing XI for consecutive three matches. Doing further experiments with his batting order in match number six against Services, Manzoor was promoted and batted-one down where he was able to score only 16 runs in that match.

However, fiddling with the batting order and not giving static positions to batsmen can have serious ramifications on their careers.

JK lost early wickets and failed to stitch partnerships which were the main reasons for their batting collapse. However, few batsmen showed some batting credentials in few matches.

Paras Sharma, while playing on number six against Services scored 93 runs which is the highest individual score from JK side in the season while Ahmad Omar Banday, who was complete failure during the tour but in the last match against Assam, Banday made a comeback and scored 79 runs (which was at one point of time the highest team score of JK against Tripura in the campaign).

ShubhamKhajuria, who either opened the innings with IrfanPathan or with Ahmad Banday, was continuously reshuffled in batting order, scored the individual score of 72 runs against Assam while  57 runs against Rajasthan.

Skipper ParvezRasool has scored 71 runs against Tamil Nadu, which is his highest individual score in this season of Vijay Hazare. In previous matches, Parvez failed to deliver with bat and was an easy target for opponents.

Pertinently, Mohammad Mudhasir, a bowler, who batted on number 10 against Jharkhand, scored a gritty 53 runs as other batsmen failed to chase the target of 222 runs as set by Jharkhand.

Ian DevChauhan, the senior Ranji player, who played five matches in the tourney, was not able to give consistent performance and could manage to score only half-century against Rajasthan in the tourney.

Ironically, the JK batsmen have miserably failed to give consistent performance throughout the tourney which reflects the spineless batting line up of the team.

The team fall short to show any intent to fight back or give a tough competition to their opponents which eventually became a familiar tale in the campaign.

While from the bowling side, WaseemRaza was the successful bowler and tops in the wicket taking list with 12 wickets in his kitty while Umar Nazir, IrfanPathan and ParvezRasool scalped 10 wickets each. Parvez’s 10 wickets also include the five-wicket haul against Services (which JK lost) and he remained the only bowler from JK side to grab five-wicket haul.

Mohammad Mudhasir rattled a total of five wickets while the rookie, Rasikh Salam, who played two matches, picked up three wickets. Amir Aziz and Rohit Sharma claimed two wickets each in the campaign.

Meanwhile, the bowling department also failed to tighten the noose of their opponent teams though in maximum matches they were not having enough runs (79 runs, 96 runs, 108 runs, 122 runs etc) to defend due to abysmal performance of the batting line up.

The bowlers failed to bowl in discipline and on an average while bowling one over extra in the form of extras. The bowlers have given a total of 52 runs in the form of extras which include 40 wide runs, 11 leg byes, five no balls, and 4 bye runs respectively.

Overall, the performance of JK team was lacking in all the departments which has evoked sharp criticism from the cricketers and non-cricketers of the state but seeing the result of last match against Assam in Vijay Hazare Trophy indicates, the team is getting back in form and gaining momentum which is a positive sign for the team for the upcomingRanji Trophy season 2018-2019.

JK team will likely face Rajasthan in the first match of Ranji Trophy, scheduled from November 1st 2018.

 


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Australia refuse to tour Pakistan for proposed ODI matches, cite safety concerns

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Melbourne: Australia has turned down Pakistan Cricket Board’s request to play two One Day International (ODI) matches in the country, citing security concerns. The PCB had asked Cricket Australia to play two of the five ODIs, which are slated to be played in UAE, in Pakistan, but security concerns made Cricket Australia decide against the same.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, though the proposal has been rejected by the Australian cricket board, it has assured the PCB that they would be open to the idea in the future.

“We want to see international cricket return to Pakistan – the country has a huge passion for it,” said a CA spokesperson.

 

“However, the safety of our players and support staff is our number one priority and we won’t compromise that. We’ll continue to take advice from a range of government agencies and our own security intelligence and act on this accordingly.”

“At this stage, from an Australia team perspective, we are not contemplating moving our current bilateral-tour arrangements from taking on Pakistan in the UAE, when they host the next series but we do remain open to the idea of playing in the country again. We formally advised the PCB of this position in early January,” he added.

The PCB has in return, declined reports of Australia refusing to tour Pakistan, terming negotiations with Cricket Australia (CA) as currently ‘open and ongoing’.

Australia have not played an away series against Pakistan since 1998 which PCB chairman Ehsan Mani had attempted to address during the former’s recent Test series against the Asian side.

Mani attempted to convince CA chief executive Kevin Roberts to schedule an away series against Pakistan, urging them to follow the lead of Sri Lanka, West Indies and Zimbabwe who had toured the nation since 2017.

Sri Lanka’s return was hailed as a major boost considering the deadly attack on their players in Lahore in 2009.

Australian ODI captain Aaron Finch and Pakistan-born Usman Khawaja have recently expressed a desire to tour Pakistan, in case the security concerns were addressed.

“Obviously, whatever Cricket Australia tells us, that’ll be the big thing. We’ll leave it to the administrators. They’re pretty good at taking care of us and making sure everything’s safe,” said Khawaja.

“I was born in Pakistan so it won’t be too different for me, but it’s still a while away,” he added.

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Federer ponders over his ‘miraculous’ career after Murray’s early retirement prospect

Agencies

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London: As the tennis world continued to digest the prospect of Andy Murray`s retirement, an evergreen Roger Federer pondered the “luck” of his longevity on Sunday ahead of his bid for a hat-trick of Australian Open titles.

Murray`s announcement that Melbourne Park could be his last tournament as a professional has made 37-year-old Federer`s career seem all the more miraculous.

Seeking a 21st Grand Slam title and a record seventh in Melbourne, the Swiss will plough into his 20th consecutive Australian Open on Monday with a first round clash against Uzbek Denis Istomin.

 

While suffering an assortment of niggles common to all hardened professionals, Federer`s only major layoff came in 2016, after he tore his meniscus when running a bath for his twin daughters.

It happened a day after losing the Australian Open semi-final to winner Novak Djokovic, but a year later, he was back raising a fifth trophy at the tournament.

While knowing the limits of his body and full of praise for his team for being able to patch him up repeatedly, Federer admitted that fortune had played a part in his longevity.

“I definitely needed a little bit of luck,” he told reporters at Melbourne Park.

“If you look at how unlucky things were with the incident here a few years ago when I ran the bath, I guess the knee, that part of the body was ready to go.

“Could have happened easily in the match against Novak, but it didn`t, maybe because I was warmed up. I have no idea what happened. I think you also need a little bit of luck.”

The 31-year-old Murray has been far less fortunate, with major hip surgery a year ago doing nothing to stop the pain that has driven the Scot to distraction and the brink of retirement.

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Barcelona on lookout for striker after Munir sale: Coach Ernesto

Agencies

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London: Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde said that the club were looking to sign a centre forward in the January transfer window after selling Munir El Haddadi to Sevilla.

The league leaders want back-up for Luis Suarez after Sevilla agreed a one-million-euro ($1.15-million) deal to buy Spain international Munir on Friday, leaving the Uruguayan as the only No. 9 at the club, playing between Lionel Messi and Ousmane Dembele.

“We have to look at it, it`s clear that after Munir`s departure we have a space,” Valverde told reporters on Saturday.

 

“We`ll see if we can sign a player, although we have to take into account the club`s economic conditions. We will see if we can, if someone comes.”

Asked about Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata, who has been linked to Barcelona in Spanish media reports, Valverde said: “I can only say the same thing — that he`s a great player, that he`s at another team, that we respect that a lot, etcetera.”

Barcelona are currently leading the La Liga with 40 points, with Atletico Madrid trailing them in second place with 35 points.

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