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Cricket - Int News

CRICKET - Int News 15 Apr, 2024

Ihsanullah to visit UK for treatment of hand & wrist
Sports Bulletin ReportLAHORE: Fast bowler Ihsanullah left for Manchester, England, on Sunday morning for his crucial appointment on Monday with esteemed orthopedic surgeon, Professor Adam Watts, regarding his elbow injury. Professor Watts specialises in hand and wrist surgery, shoulder and elbow procedures, sports injuries, and trauma surgery.Ihsanullah's franchise, Multan Sultans, has collaborated with the PCB to secure this appointment. The PCB, as Ihsanullah’s parent body, will cover all expenses for his treatment and rehabilitation.

CRICKET - Int News 13 Apr, 2024

Pak-New Zealand T20I Series: PCB reveals Match Officials
Sports Bulletin ReportRAWALPINDI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) today announced match officials for the Pakistan versus New Zealand five-match T20I series, which will roll into action on April 18 at Pindi Cricket Stadium Rawalpindi.According to media department of PCB, Andy Pycroft, a member of the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Match Referees, will lead the playing control team that includes five umpires, namely Ahsan Raza (elite panelist), Aleem Dar, Asif Yaqoob, Faisal Afridi and Rashid Riaz (all from the ICC’s international panel), who will share umpiring responsibilities.The Pindi Stadium will stage the opening three T20Is on 18, 20 and 21 April before action will move to Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium where the last two matches will be played on 25 and 27 April.Umpire and match referee appointments:18 April – First T20I. Ahsan Raza and Aleem Dar (on-field umpires), Faisal Afridi (third umpire), Rashid Riaz (fourth umpire); Andy Pycroft (match referee)20 April – Second T20I. Asif Yaqoob and Aleem Dar (on-field umpires), Ahsan Raza (third umpire), Faisal Afridi (fourth umpire); Andy Pycroft (match referee)21 April – Third T20I. Ahzan Raza and Asif Yaqoob (on-field umpires), Rashid Riaz (third umpire), Aleem Dar (fourth umpire); Andy Pycroft (match referee)25 April – Fourth T20I. Faisal Afridi and Rashid Riaz (on-field umpires), Asif Yaqoob (third umpire), Ahsan Raza (fourth umpire); Andy Pycroft (match referee)27 April – Rashid Riaz and Faisal Afridi (on-field umpires), Aleem Dar (third umpire), Asif Yaqoob (fourth umpire); Andy Pycroft (match referee)

CRICKET - Int News 09 Apr, 2024

T20 National Team announced for New Zealand home Series
Imad and Amir named in a 17-player squad, Irfan and Usman earn maiden Pakistan selectionSports Bulletin ReportLAHORE: The National Selection Committee (NSC) for Men of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced a 17-man squad for the T20 International Series against New Zealand, which will be played from April 18 to 27 in Rawalpindi and Lahore aiming to set a suitable squad for forthcoming T20 World Cup, which will be played United States of America and West Indies simultaneously in June this year 2024.Uncapped middle-order batter Mohammad Irfan Khan and opener batter Usman Khan have been included in the 17-player squad led by skipper Babar Azam. Both new players have earned the selectors’ nod following impressive performances in the HBL Pakistan Super League.Irfan Khan of Karachi Kings was adjudged the Emerging Player and Best Fielder of the HBL PSL 9 after scoring 171 runs at a strike-rate of 140.16. Overall, the 21-year-old Mianwali-born Irfan has featured in 34 T20s in which he has scored 499 runs at a strike-rate of 135.96. Irfan has also represented Pakistan in the ICC U19 Cricket World Cups 2020 and 2022.Usman Khan of Multan Sultans smashed two centuries and two half-centuries in the most recent event to help his side reach the final where they lost to Islamabad United in a last-ball thriller. In the HBL PSL 8, the 28-year-old Karachi-born right-hander had smashed a 36-ball century against Quetta Gladiators - the fastest century in the tournament’s history. Overall, Usman has featured in 36 T20s in which he has scored 1,207 runs at a strike-rate of 146.12.Irfan Khan on his selection said: “I am deeply honoured to have been selected in the Pakistan squad for the upcoming T20I series against New Zealand. Breaking into such a formidable team like Pakistan is a testament to the dedication and effort I have put into my game. Now, my focus is on seizing this opportunity and solidifying my position within the team. I am fully committed to continuing to work diligently and proving myself worthy of the trust placed in me by the captain and selectors.”Usman Khan said on his selection: “Being chosen to represent one’s country is the ultimate dream and goal for any athlete. Today, I am absolutely thrilled and filled with joy as the selectors have granted me the opportunity to be part of the upcoming series against New Zealand. This selection validates the relentless effort and dedication I have poured into my craft, and I am fully committed to upholding the high standards I have set for myself.”Selection committee member and batting coach Mohammad Yousuf said: “On behalf of the selection committee, I extend heartfelt congratulations to Mohammad Irfan Khan and Usman Khan on their inclusion in the Pakistan men’s cricket team for the upcoming home series against New Zealand. Both players have undeniably earned their spots through a string of consistent, outstanding performances. We hold great optimism and belief in their potential to become key impact players, yet recognise that this requires ongoing dedication and effort. I trust that both players will continue their upward trajectory, sparing no effort in proving themselves worthy of the selectors' and captain's trust and confidence.”Abrar retained, Imad and Mohammad Amir recalled:The other uncapped player in the squad is wrist spinner Abrar Ahmed. He was named in the squad for the T20I series against New Zealand earlier this year, but returned after Australia Tests due to fitness reasons. He will be the second wrist spinner in the side along with Usama Mir.Also named in the squad are all-rounder Imad Wasim and fast bowler Mohammad Amir. The two experienced campaigners had become available after coming out of retirement last month.Imad has played 66 T20Is in which he has scored 486 runs at a strike-rate of 131.7 and taken 65 wickets at an economy-rate of 6.26. He last played for Pakistan 12 months ago at his home ground in Rawalpindi against New Zealand.Amir, who last played for Pakistan in August 2020 at Old Trafford against England, has played in 50 T20Is in which he has taken 59 wickets at an economy-rate of 7.02.Selection committee member and senior team manager Wahab Riaz said: “The decision to include Imad Wasim and Mohammad Amir was a straightforward one, given their availability for selection and considering Haris Rauf's injury and Mohammad Nawaz's current form. Both Amir and Imad possess undeniable match-winning capabilities, and we trust they will consistently deliver strong performances to bolster the team's objectives. We have communicated our overarching selection policy and strategy to all elite players, and there is complete alignment within the group. To ensure the policy's implementation in letter and spirit, I will closely collaborate with the team management during the series. As we prepare for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 in the USA and West Indies, this series holds significant importance for Pakistan. Rather than solely focusing on the formidable New Zealand side, we aim to introspect and identify areas for improvement. I anticipate that players will seize the opportunities presented to strengthen their claims for the World Cup.”Names of Players: Babar Azam (captain), Abrar Ahmed, Azam Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Abbas Afridi, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohmmad Amir, Mohammad Irfan Khan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usama Mir, Usman Khan, Zaman KhanNon-travelling reserves: Haseebullah, Mohammad Ali, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Sahibzada Farhan, and Salman Ali Agha

CRICKET - Int News 07 Apr, 2024

PCB News: Babar Azam reflects on pre-season camp in Kakul
Sports Bulletin ReportLAHORE: Pakistan captain Babar Azam has termed the pre-season camp in Kakul as highly successful, adding that it not only contributed to preparing the players for the long and challenging cricket season ahead but also strengthened unity and understanding amongst the group through strategically designed team bonding exercises and drills.Babar Azam was joined by Aamer Jamal, Azam Khan, Imad Wasim, Naseem Shah and Shadab Khan in paying tribute to the facilities, atmosphere, and support of the highly trained and skilled instructors. They also believed the 11 days spent at the location will help them successfully overcome the demands of upcoming challenges and contribute in producing strong performances.Twenty-nine elite cricketers attended the pre-season camp at the historic and iconic Pakistan Military Academy in Kakul from March 26 to April 6, with the training and drills designed by Pakistan Army experts and strategists. During the camp, there was a focus on team building aimed to enhance the physical and mental strength of the players, ensuring they were in the best condition to face the challenges ahead.Under the guidance of experienced trainers and coaches, the players underwent a comprehensive training regime tailored to elevate their fitness levels, agility, leadership, strategic thinking and overall performance on the field.Pakistan captain Babar Azam said: “This was my third boot camp, and with each visit, I’ve gleaned new insights. This time, our focus extended beyond physical fitness to encompass team bonding activities and performance-improving lectures. These elements are crucial considering our team environment where collective performance is paramount for achieving desired results. The notable deviation from previous camps was the absence of cricket-centric activities. Instead, the emphasis was squarely on physical conditioning, teamwork and mental resilience. Immersed in such an inspiring facility, guided by top-notch instructors and a well-structured programme, all the players have experienced significant growth. I’m confident that we’ll return to competitive cricket as better, fitter and mentally tougher athletes, thereby enhancing our overall performance. Unlike our usual routine during other camps and international series, we engaged in confidence-building exercises and team-building activities. Notably, we opted to share rooms, facilitating deeper connections among team members. These shared spaces fostered discussions ranging from strategic planning and team combinations to the evolution of cricket, latest innovations in the sport, analysis of opponents and our approach to each day's challenges. Given the upcoming cricket fixtures, this camp proves exceptionally valuable. It not only mitigates injury risks but also augments both individual skills and collective team performance.”All-rounder Aamer Jamal said: “These sessions were instrumental in enhancing both our speed and endurance. Given the high altitude of this location, unique training methods were necessary to ensure sufficient oxygen flow to our muscles, and I believe this aspect was one of the most valuable takeaways from our time here in Kakul. Visiting this iconic facility was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The exceptional care and treatment we received added an extra layer of enjoyment and reward to this pre-season camp.”Wicketkeeper-batter Azam Khan said: “The rigorous training at higher altitudes has not only pushed us to our limits but has also markedly enhanced our overall fitness and strength. The picturesque location, steeped in history and achievements, served as a massive source of motivation for all of us, inspiring active participation in the drills and prompting us to make the most of this opportunity. My primary focus has been on enhancing my endurance, and the instructors have been incredibly supportive in this endeavor. While I understand that this is a gradual process, I feel well-prepared and equipped to assimilate all the learnings from this camp and continue working towards achieving the required standards. One of the most valuable aspects of this session has been the fostering of team bonding. We utilised this time to deepen our understanding of each other, drawing significant positive energy from these bonding exercises.”All-rounder Imad Wasim said: “Personally, I benefited tremendously as I was already focused on my rehabilitation and strength. These sessions and drills were markedly different from cricket-related training, but we dedicated extra hours that I'm confident will benefit us all in match situations. The time in Kakul was also crucial from a team bonding perspective. I've sensed, and I'm sure other players have too, that it was valuable to be here, spend time together, and grow closer to each other. This closeness will undoubtedly play a significant role in our performances.”Fast bowler Naseem Shah said: “After some time apart due to the HBL Pakistan Super League, it was truly gratifying to come together and recharge for the cricket challenges that lie ahead. Undoubtedly, there was a significant emphasis on physical fitness, as every athlete aspires to reach peak condition. In this regard, I believe we've successfully met our objectives, and I'll return as a fitter and more adept athlete. We wholeheartedly engaged in each drill, occasionally even competing against one another. This not only fostered camaraderie but also reinforced our unity and team spirit.”All-rounder Shadab Khan said: “It has been a new experience training at these marvelous facilities under the watchful eyes of the Pakistan Army trainers. Undoubtedly, all the cricketers will return with improved fitness levels and standards that will significantly contribute when they take the field in the upcoming challenges. The fitter our players are during the season, the greater our chances of success will be.”

CRICKET - Int News 02 Apr, 2024

Ben Stokes Opts Out of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Selection
Sports Bulletin ReportLondon (UK): England men’s cricketer Ben Stokes has confirmed today that he does not wish to be considered for selection ahead of this summer’s ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, which will take place in June in the West Indies and United States of America (USA).The England Test captain’s primary focus is to get fully fit to bowl not only for the summer of Test cricket, which includes two three-match Test series’ against West Indies and Sri Lanka respectively but for all cricket in the future.Commenting on his decision, Stokes said: “I’m working hard and focusing on building my bowling fitness back up to fulfil a full role as an all-rounder in all formats of cricket. “Opting out of the IPL and the World Cup will hopefully be a sacrifice that allows me to be the all-rounder I want to be for the foreseeable future.“The recent Test tour of India highlighted how far behind I was from a bowling point of view after my knee surgery and nine months without bowling. I’m looking forward to playing for Durham in the County Championship before the start of our Test summer.“I wish Jos (Buttler), Motty (Matthew Mott) and all the team the best of luck in defending our title.”England’s ICC Men’s T20 World Cup defence starts on 4 June against Scotland at the Kensington Oval in Barbados. They will then play group matches against Australia, Oman, and Namibia in Barbados and Antigua before qualification for the Super 8s and knockout stages.

CRICKET - Int News 01 Apr, 2024

Another cricket star player Mayank Yadav on the horizon
Bipin DaniRising cricket star, Mayank Yadav made his debut with the Lucknow SuperGiants, and has become soon on the top trending name. In his opening spell, he clocked a speed of over 150kph, took the prize wicket of Shikar Dhawan, and paved the way for his team’s victory.In Delhi, Prabhu Yadav has a business of supplying sirens and bar lights to hospitals, police and other government departments. His 21-year-old son, Mayank, who opted to play cricket and not join his father and sister (Hasita) in the business and playing in his very first match in the IPL has brightened the red light by bowling the fastest delivery in the ongoing tournament.Playing for the Lucknow SuperGiants (LSG) against Punjab Kings, he took 3 wickets in four overs in which one of his balls clocked 155.8 kph, minutes before claiming his maiden IPL wicket. It was the 11th over when Yadav bowled the fastest delivery of the season to Shikhar Dhawan who was beaten as he tried to slash it away through point.Prabhu Yadav father of Mayank Yadav said: “Yes, we did watch the match at home. He was a last-minute inclusion in the playing eleven and therefore could not travel to Lucknow for the match. We were hoping to go to Jaipur for his team’s first match against Rajasthan Royals last Sunday but he was not in the final XI. Mayank has always been ambitious to bowl fast. He has been bowling at high speed at a young age and his team mates in U-15 and U-17 were astonished to watch him bowl at this speed.”Chetan Sharma said: “Mayank was enrolled by late Tarak Sinha in his academy and was polished later by another coach Devender Sharma. Mayank Sharma has a slim body. Apparently that does help in fasting bowling. His run-up, loading, and follow up is tremendous and therefore he generates this speed. I have seen him bowl at zonal level. Quicker you run, you can bowl at this speed. If he remains injury free can make progress well.”The proud father further says:“We did watch the match at home. It was a last-minute inclusion in the eleven and therefore we could not travel to Lucknow for the match. We were hoping to go to Jaipur for his team’s first match against Rajasthan Royals last Sunday but he was not in the final XI. Mayank has always been ambitious to bowl fast. He has been bowling at high speed at a young age and his team mates in U-15 and U-17 were astonished to watch him bowl at this speed” 

CRICKET - Int News 01 Apr, 2024

Babar takes over captaincy of Pakistan's ODI, and T20 teams
Sports Bulletin ReportLAHORE: Right-handed batter, Babar Azam has become the captain of Pakistan’s One Day International (ODA), and Twenty 20, as the Pakistan Cricket Team confirmed that following a unanimous recommendation from the PCB’s selection committee, Chairman PCB Mohsin Naqvi has appointed him for new job of captaincy.Babar Azam has replaced Shaheen Shah Afridi as T20 captain. 'King Babar' also became ODI skipper after a hiatus of five months. Babar Azam was removed as ODI captain after the defeat of World Cup 2023. PCB Chairman Mohsin Naqvi held a press conference on Sunday, at the headquarters of Pakistan Cricket, Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. Naqvi announced that the selection committee was reorganized. Four members of the new selections committee – namely, Asad Shafiq, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Yousuf and Abdul Razzaq – were also present at the press conference.

CRICKET - Int News 31 Mar, 2024

Indian physio Prasanth Panchada leaves Afghanistan team
BIPIN DANIIndian physio Prasanth Panchada, who was attached with the Afghanistan national team for some years has left his job, it is learnt here. According to highly placed sources in Kabul, the renowned physio sent his resignation letter a week ago. "I would like to express my gratitude to the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB). It has been a remarkable journey, witnessing the highs and lows in the development of the Afghanistan team. I am concluding my journey with this wonderful team with immediate effect", he has said in his e-mail, the copy of which was seen by this Reporter. Later, speaking to this reporter, Prasanth Panchada confirmed the news without elaborating more. "I have left the job for personal reasons", he said, adding, "Overall the team has always been a fit team and injury free". Recalling the most challenging job, he said, "Rashid getting back to competitive cricket is more satisfying". The 25-year-old bowling all-rounder Rashid Khan has been playing competitive games now, meaning he has now fully recovered from the back injury and subsequent surgery that has kept him out of action since the 2023 World Cup.The physio has already been attached with the KKR team in the ongoing IPL. He is also attached with the other league of the same franchise.  

CRICKET - Int News 29 Mar, 2024

SPNI set to become the home to New Zealand Cricket for 7 years
Dubai (UAE): Sony Pictures Networks India (SPNI) has acquired the television and digital rights to broadcast and stream all New Zealand-based BLACKCAPS and WHITE FERNS matches in the India and associated territories for the next seven years.The landmark deal, from 1 May 2024 to 30 April 2031, will include India’s tours of New Zealand in the 2026-27 and 2030-31 summers, as well as all other bilateral Tests, ODIs, and T20Is played in New Zealand during the designated period. All matches will be telecast and streamed live across SPNI’s sports channels and will be livestreamed on Sony LIV, respectively, adding to an SPNI portfolio, which already includes agreements with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), and Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC).NP Singh, Managing Director and CEO of SPNI said: "We are thrilled to announce our new partnership with New Zealand Cricket. New Zealand is renowned for its exceptional sportsmanship and strength; it’s one of the most respected cricket teams globally. It is our privilege to deepen and nurture the bond between this esteemed team and its passionate fan base in India."Diana Puketapu-Lyndon, Chair of New Zealand Cricket, said: "With world-class sporting tournaments in their portfolio, Sony Pictures Networks India is one of the premiere sports content providers in India and we look forward to our association.”Rajesh Kaul, SPNI’s Chief Revenue Officer said: “Our constant endeavour has been to add marquee properties to our sports portfolio making us a global muti-sporting arena for audiences in India. Our partnership with NZC is an important addition to our sports portfolio as the BLACKCAPS have won the hearts of cricket fans through their fierce competitive spirit and impeccable sporting behavior.”“We’re looking forward to showcasing some terrific cricket through our seven year partnership which includes three crucial bilateral series against England, Sri Lanka and Pakistan in 2024-25 as well two bilateral series featuring the Indian men’s team in 2026-27 and 2030-31 respectively.” New Zealand Cricket (NZC) chief executive Scott Weenink said: “Sony Pictures Networks India is an aspirational, innovative and forward-focussed business that prides itself on being efficient and sustainable in a rapidly changing world”, said Weenink. “It puts its consumers first and seeks to be the very best it can be – values NZC relates to very strongly.”  (Press Release). 

CRICKET - Int News 28 Mar, 2024

Pakistan v New Zealand T20I series tickets to go on sale from Friday
LAHORE (PR): The tickets for the five-match T20I series between Pakistan and New Zealand will go on sale from Friday, 29 March, as the series will be played in Rawalpindi (18, 20 and 21 April) and Lahore (25 and 27 April). The matches are set to begin at 730pm.In the first phase, the pre-booking of the online tickets will start on Friday at 5pm at pcb.tcs.com.pk. The sale of physical tickets along with outlet addresses will be announced in due course. The tickets for Rawalpindi-leg will be available at a minimum cost of PKR 500 (Premium) and the maximum available at PKR 7,500 (VVIP Gallery). Additionally, the hospitality seats will be available at a maximum amount of PKR 15,000 except for the first T20I where the hospitality seats will be available for PKR 12,000.For the Lahore leg, ticket prices start at PKR 300 for General seating and the maximum at PKR 6,000 for the fourth T20I while PKR 7,000 for the fifth T20I (VVIP Gallery). Also, hospitality boxes located at the Far-End building will be available for purchase in Lahore. The hospitality box for Thursday’s (25 April) encounter will be available at PKR 600,000, while the box for Saturday’s (27 April) match will be available at PKR 700,000.