Lasith Malinga hopes for big turnout during ODI retirement against Bangladesh

Sudhir Gupta 23/07/2019
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Sri Lanka's Lasith Malinga.

Sri Lanka veteran fast bowler Lasith Malinga confirmed on Tuesday he will retire from ODI cricket after the first match of the upcoming series against Bangladesh.

Malinga asked fans to attend his farewell ODI at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Friday and hoped to play T20 cricket in the future.

In a video posted on his wife’s Facebook page, Malinga said he was glad to play for the team again after being sidelined by selectors two years ago.

“Friday will be the last day you will see me playing a ODI match,” Malinga said. “If you can, please come for the match.”

The right-arm quick hoped to play T20 cricket and set his sights on the 2020 World T20 in Australia.

“I hope to be able to take Sri Lanka to the next T20 World Cup,” he said.

“I hope I will have an opportunity to play in that tournament, but if there are better players than me, I don’t mind being left out.”

Malinga’s retirement was first announced by skipper Dimuth Karunaratne. He will retire as Sri Lanka’s third-highest wicket-taker in ODIs with 335 scalps in 219 innings.

Only Muttiah Muralitharan (523) and Chaminda Vaas (399) have taken more wickets than Malinga in ODIs for the country. He was Sri Lanka’s highest wicket-taker at the 2019 World Cup with 13 scalps in seven innings.

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Rahul Chahar and other next gen India players who can shine during West Indies tour

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Chahar (l) has earned a maiden India call up.

While India’s selectors didn’t take any drastic calls while announcing, there were a few fresh faces in the three squads for the upcoming tour of the West Indies.

One of the biggest takeaways from the squad selections was the rise of Rishabh Pant as India’s wicketkeeper for all three formats. The selectors have placed their faith in the 21-year-old and the left-hander is set to get an extended run. Here, we take a look at five other next gen India players who can seize their opportunity in West Indies.

Shreyas Iyer

The 24-year-old has long been seen as then next big thing and he now has another chance to establish himself in the ODI middle order.

The right-hander has already played six ODIs and as many T20s for India with his last appearance coming at the start of last year. Despite doing reasonably well and maintaining an average of 42 in the 50-over format, Iyer wasn’t given an extended run in the lead up the 2019 World Cup.

The Delhi Capitals skipper can be India’s long-term answer to the No4 problem with his calm approach at the crease. However, he will need to make the playing XI first and it remains to be seen how many chances he gets in the Caribbean.

Iyer has an ODI batting average of 42.

Iyer has an ODI batting average of 42.

Khaleel Ahmed

The left-arm pacer was given a run in the ODI and T20 sides in the lead up to the World Cup but failed to grab the chance.

The 21-year-old was decent in his ODI outings but was wayward in the T20s, finishing on the expensive side. The left-arm quick was good in patches and there is talent there which can be polished.

Since being axed from the India squad, Khaleel had an excellent IPL with Sunrisers Hyderabad and he will be confident of putting in a much better show in India colours this time around.

India lack a left-arm pace variation and Khaleel could provide them with that if he comes good.

A second chance for Khaleel to impress.

A second chance for Khaleel to impress.

Washington Sundar

The 19-year-old finished as the man-of-the-series in India’s Nidahas T20 tri-series triumph last year but has found chances hard to come by ever since due to injuries and fluctuations in form.

The youngster has shown plenty of promise since making his IPL debut as a 17-year-old for Rising Pune Supergiant in 2017 and can be a handy batsman lower-down the order while bowling economical off-spin.

He had a poor IPL in 2019 but it is important to remember he is still a teenager. He will have, however, have his work cut out in making the T20 playing XI in the Caribbean with Krunal Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja and Rahul Chahar all competing for similar roles.

Sundar (l) can be a handy all-round option in the T20 format.

Sundar (l) can be a handy all-round option in the T20 format.

Rahul Chahar

The 19-year-old leg-spinner left quite the mark in IPL 2019 for Mumbai Indians with 13 wickets in as many matches in his debut campaign.

The Rajasthan-born teenager’s most impressive attribute is his calmness under pressure. He showed great maturity against star batsmen and was able to maintain an excellent economy-rate of 6.5. He has been impressive for India ‘A’ as well since his breakout IPL campaign.

Chahar has all the variations in the book including a sharp googly and he has a chance to make his claim for a place in the T20 squad. India have not picked the wrist-spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav for the T20 format and it is an excellent opportunity for Chahar to make a lasting impression.

Chahar (r) is the only wrist-spinner in the T20 squad.

Chahar (r) is the only wrist-spinner in the T20 squad.

Navdeep Saini

While he might be the oldest of the bunch at 26, Navdeep Saini is still a rookie at international cricket and has just earned his maiden India call up.

The pacer has been a consistent performer for Delhi at the first-class level for some time now and grabbed eyeballs with his maiden IPL debut campaign with Royal Challengers Bangalore earlier this year.

Saini picked up 11 wickets for RCB while also breaching the 150 kmph barrier. The right-arm pacer did well for India A in their recent one-day series in West Indies where he claimed a five-wicket haul in the second game.

Having been picked in both the ODI and T20 squads, Saini definitely should get plenty of chances in the upcoming tour and he will now be hoping to translate his domestic success to international glory.

A promising debut campaign from the RCB pacer. Image - @IPL/Twitter.

A promising debut campaign from the RCB pacer. Image – @IPL/Twitter.

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Paine feels questionable reverse-swing tactics are on the low after Newlands ball-tampering debacle

Sport360 staff 22/07/2019
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Tim Paine (l) and his predecessor Steve Smith (r).

Australia Test skipper Tim Paine is hoping that the infamous Newlands’ ball-tampering episode of last year will lead to the demise of questionable tactics by teams to generate reverse-swing.

Paine was instated to the Australia captaincy out of the blue last year following the debacle at Cape Town which ultimately saw Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft being handed suspensions from international and domestic cricket.

Smith and Warner have since made their returns to international cricket after serving their one-year suspension with the duo featuring in the recent World Cup in England.

As he now gets ready to lead the Aussies in the upcoming Ashes series against arch-rivals England, Paine feels that the Cape Town ball-tampering scandal has led to teams being less ‘adventurous’ in their quest to generate reverse-swing.

“I think teams are always looking at ways to get the ball to reverse swing,” Paine told cricket.com.au.

“Whether that’s throwing it into the dirt, or using their fingers to work on the quarter seam, or in England for years it’s been talked about mints being used to impart sheen through players’ saliva – there’s always something.

“The worrying trend was that teams were starting to try more and more methods, and getting more adventurous. So the thing I hope will come out of South Africa is that it will be cleaned up, and it will be a more level playing field rather than teams trying to push the boundaries and develop a mentality of ‘they’re doing this, so we’ll try this’ and ‘they do that, so we’ll try it too’. I think for too long, it was allowed.”

The first Ashes Test between England and Australia is slated to get underway at Edgbaston on August 1. Paine and his men will play a three-day intra-squad warm up game beginning on Tuesday to get battle ready for the hotly-anticipated Test series between the two old foes.

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