Kiwi opener Martin Guptill's ton crushes Bangladesh in opening ODI

Sport360 staff 15:06 13/02/2019
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Martin Guptill.

Martin Guptill struck his 15th ODI century as New Zealand cruised to an eight-wicket victory over Bangladesh in the first ODI in Napier.

The tourists were always up against it after Trent Boult and Matt Henry obliterated their top order with Boult finishing as the pick of the home bowlers with 3-40.

An eighth-wicket stand of 84 from Mohammad Mithun and Mohammad Saifuddin gave Bangladesh some hope as they edged towards their modest total of 232 all out.

But it proved no problem for New Zealand with Guptill and Henry Nicholls (53) sharing a first-wicket partnership of 103. Captain Kane Williamson fell lbw to Mahmudullah on 11, but an unbroken third-wicket stand of 96 between Guptill and Ross Taylor saw New Zealand home.

Guptill ultimately finished unbeaten on 117 as the hosts achieved their target with 33 balls to spare.

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza said his team were still adjusting to New Zealand conditions.

“We bowled well but we were struggling batting. We just lost too many wickets early,” he said.

Guptill’s 15th ODI ton came off 103 deliveries with six fours and three sixes.

“Martin was brilliant, a fantastic hundred, and the contributions (from teammates) around that were really good as well,” Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson said.

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PSL 2019 Team Profile: Karachi Kings banking on batting firepower

Waseem Ahmed 11:53 13/02/2019
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Imad Wasim (l) and Wasim Akram (c). Image - KarachiKings/Twitter.

The fourth edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) is almost upon us with action set to get underway on Thursday in Dubai.

Six PSL franchises will battle it out for Pakistan’s top T20 crown over the next five weeks.

Here we profile the Karachi Kings franchise who are bidding to make the final for the first time in their history.

Squad

Imad Wasim (capt), Mohammad Rizwan, Babar Azam, Ravi Bopara, Usman Khan, Mohammad Amir, Colin Ingram, Colin Munro, Sikandar Raza, Awais Zia, Usama Mir, Aaron Summers, Sohail Khan, Iftikhar Ahmed, Ali Imran, Abrar Ahmed, Aamir Yamin, Jaahid Ali, Ben Dunk, Liam Livingstone.

Skipper – Imad Wasim

After taking charge of eight games in the 2018 edition, Pakistan all-rounder Imad Wasim has been handed the reins of Karachi Kings full time for the upcoming season.

Past performances

Despite making the playoffs in each of the three editions held so far, the Kings have failed to advance to a single final. Their best finish so far in the tournament’s history is third place which they achieved in 2017 as well as 2018.

Coach – Mickey Arthur

The Pakistan head coach will continue in his role despite a potential case of conflict of interest that will be examined by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) at the end of the season. Karachi can also call upon Wasim Akram for his experience with the former Pakistan pacer appointed as the team’s president.

Key players – Babar, Imad, Munro, Ingram

Babar Azam is in terrific form at the moment.

Babar Azam is in terrific form at the moment.

Strengths

There is no shortage of batting firepower in the Karachi ranks with the likes of Babar, Ingram, Munro and Ravi Bopara in tow while in Pakistan pacer Mohammad Amir they have a man capable of leading the bowling attack.

Weakness

It is in the all-round and spin departments that Kings find themselves short with a lack of recognisable names. They will be hoping Englishman Liam Livingstone can come good as an all-rounder.

Prediction – Playoffs

There is little doubt that Karachi will once again get to the playoffs, at least with the personnel at their disposal. But progressing to the final might be a step too far if Babar fails to fire.

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PSL 2019 Team Profile: Same name but fresh start for Multan Sultans

Waseem Ahmed 23:18 12/02/2019
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Shoaib Malik (l) and the Sultans. Image - MultanSultans/Twitter.

With just days to go for the fourth edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), we take a look at the newest member of the T20 family.

Multan Sultans are the newest entrants in the league and will be playing in only their second edition. The franchise was dissolved following failure to fulfill their financial obligations at the end of last season but are back in the PSL under the same name but new ownership.

Squad

Shoaib Malik (C), Shan Masood, Umar Siddiq, Mohammad Junaid, Mohammad Irfan, Junaid Khan, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Irfan Khan, Shahid Afridi, Joe Denly, Johnson Charles, Qais Ahmed, Shakeel Ansar, Laurie Evans, Numan Ali, Dan Christian, Tome Moores, Ali Shafiq, Muhammad Ilyas, Andre Russell.

Skipper – Shoaib Malik

Having led the team out in their maiden appearance in 2018, it will once again be Pakistan veteran Shoaib Malik who will take charge as captain.

Past performances

In their only previous appearance in 2018, Multan failed to reach the playoffs after winning only four of their 10 league matches. They ultimately finished second from bottom.

Coach – Johan Botha

The new owners have decided to replace Australia’s Tom Moody with T20 veteran Johan Botha who has only recently retired from all forms of cricket.

Key players – Malik, Andre Russell, Shahid Afridi

Big Andre Russell will be key to Multan's hopes.

Big Andre Russell will be key to Multan’s hopes.

Strengths

There is plenty of T20 experience in the Multan Sultans squad with the likes of Malik, Afridi, Russell and Joe Denly in tow and this should hold the franchise in good stead on their return to the league. There is no shortage of all-rounders either with Russell and Afridi able to contribute with both bat and ball.

Weakness

While there are many T20 veterans in the team, the Sultans are lacking young blood and that can sometimes make all the difference. They have already lost the services of Steve Smith due to injury with Russell replacing the Australian. In Nicholas Pooran, they had an exciting young T20 talent but the West Indies dasher is no longer available after being called up to the ODI squad with Johnson Charles replacing him in the Multan outfit.

Prediction – Playoffs

Advancing to the final might be a bridge too far for Multan Sultans unless Russell can really turn it on. They will rely primarily on their experienced heads to see the team through but that could be a risky ploy should the names mentioned above fail to fire.

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