January’s ‘Black Clash’ charity cricket match between New Zealand’s ruby and cricket stars just got bigger with three more All Blacks stars in the form of the Barrett brothers and Aaron Smith throwing their hats into the ring.
Brothers Beauden and Jordie Barrett, and Smith join the likes of Richie McCaw, Kieran Read and Israel Dagg in signing up for star-studded All Blacks squad which will take on a collection of former Blackcaps stars in the T20 clash to be held in Christchurch.
Brendon McCullum, Stephen Fleming, Nathan Astle and Chris Harris are some of the names who will turn out for the Blackcaps in the charity clash. The T20 match is being held to raise money for both the sports’ welfare programmes.
21-year-old Jordie Barrett boasts of an impressive cricketing pedigree having played for the Central Districts in the U19 level while also representing Taranki in New Zealand’s Hawke Cup.
“Rugby does tend to get in the way of cricket but I’m always keen for a hit in the summer when I get the chance,” Jordie told TVNZ.
“The match is a really great concept and I can’t wait to be a part of it. It’ll be pretty cool to play alongside a bunch of my rugby mates in another sport. I know some of them talk a good game so I guess it’s now time for them to put their money where their mouths are,” he added.
Smith, meanwhile, is excited about the chance to rub shoulders with former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum.
“I’ve always loved cricket. The thing I’m most excited about is the chance to meet Brendon McCullum. He’s a real hero of mine and now I’ll get the chance to see him smack a ball close -up. Hopefully just not off my bowling,” he said.
The All Blacks are being coached by Sir Graham Henry while Fleming will turn out in a player-cum-coach role for the Blackcaps. The charity T20 clash will be held on January 25, 2019.
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The legendary Australia spinner replaces compatriot Rodney Marsh who is stepping down from the committee after a six-year tenure.
The MCC world cricket committee is an independent body comprised of former players and umpires established in 2006 which can prescribe changes to the sport’s existing laws. The committee meets twice a year to discuss the state of the game.
49-year-old Warne expressed his pride at being offered the role.
“It is an honour to have been asked to be a member,” the Aussie stated.
“It is an extremely exciting time for cricket and I hope that I will have plenty to offer in discussion and debate.”
Warne’s induction into the committee was welcomed by former England skipper Mike Gatting, the man who was famously bowled by the Australian spinner in what has become known as the ‘ball of the century’.
“We’re delighted to welcome Shane on to the committee,’ Gatting said.
“Obviously his profile in the world game is as big as they come and, with his extensive experience, I am sure he will offer great insights into many different facets of the game,” he added.
The committee also includes the likes of Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum and former Pakistan batsman Ramiz Raja.
The tourists were reduced to 22-6 in their chase of Pakistan’s 155-8 before being bowled out for 89 ultimately. Finch was dismissed for a duck by Imad Wasim who picked up 3-20 on his return to Pakistan’s T20 squad.
Taking full responsibility for Australia’s shambolic display, Finch bemoaned Australia’s display in the powerplay overs.
“That Powerplay was horrific…it was like a car crash in slow motion. Opening the batting, it’s my responsibility to get us off to a good start and set up the chase there,” Finch said after the game.
“I take full responsibility for that. I think any time that you’re chasing a total like that it’s important you have a solid start and for me to get out in the first over and not give us that was not good enough,” he added.
The right-hander promised changes in the batting department for the remainder of the three-match series.
“Absolutely they’ll be looking at changes,” he stated.
“I think all in all, our bowling performance was pretty good. Our fielding was slightly sloppy, then the batting was awful. Definitely when that happens, when you lose a game so badly, you have to look at everything.”
Finch will now hope for a much better showing from his men when they take on Pakistan in the second T20 in Dubai on Friday.