ICC World Cup review: New Zealand, India headed for reserve days after rain delays

By Wayne Lewis, Lance Whittaker&Mariah Ramharack July 09, 2019

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  • Warriors spinners bamboozle Patriots to set up fourth straight win Warriors spinners bamboozle Patriots to set up fourth straight win

    Guyana Amazon Warriors continued to match Trinbago Knight Riders win for win at the top of the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) table after subjecting St Kitts & Nevis Patriots to a trial by spin at Warner Park.

    The Warriors and Knight Riders have both now won four from four after this all-too-easy seven-wicket victory for the Guyanese side.

    Imran Tahir (2/17) and Qais Ahmad (3/28) led a four-man spin attack for the Warriors that reduced the Patriots to 53/5 and, although Shamarh Brooks engineered a recovery of sorts with a well-made 34 from 25, the innings fell away after he departed, seam finally making an impression as Keemo Paul took the last two wickets in the space of three balls. A final total of 121 was never going to be enough and was immediately put firmly in perspective by a 24-ball 49 from Brandon King at the top of the Warriors chase.

    He smashed three fours and a huge Hero Maximum over midwicket from Sheldon Cottrell’s second over to make it clear the Warriors were not about to linger over chasing down their target.

    And when the Patriots tried some spin it didn’t work quite as well as it had for the visitors, with Fabian Allen’s first over taken for 16 – including two more big sixes for King.

    He was run out one short of a half-century from the final ball of the Power Play, but it mattered little. By then the Warriors were already 64/1 and over halfway to their target.

    Shimron Hetmyer toe-ended Mohammad Hafeez to long-off for just a single looking to keep the attack going, prompting Chandrapaul Hemraj and Warriors skipper Shoaib Malik to throttle back and make sure nothing went wrong.

    Hemraj edged behind off Rayad Emrit for a watchful 22, leaving Nicholas Pooran (19*) to apply the finishing touches alongside Malik (24*) as the Warriors got home with 25 balls to spare.

    The start of the game was delayed by a brief shower and when play did begin the Warriors had got through four overs and three different spinners before a seamer was seen.

    The tactic paid off, with Devon Thomas bowled by Chris Green’s first ball and just 19 runs on the board after the first four overs from Hemraj, Green and Tahir.

    And even when the quicker bowlers did come on, it was still the spinners making the difference. Evans had stroked four fours in reaching 26 and was looking dangerous when he was superbly run out by a direct hit from Tahir at short fine-leg.

    With the seam bowling of Romario Shepherd and Paul proving relatively expensive, Malik turned to the fourth spinner in his ranks with instant reward as Qais Ahmad had Hafeez caught for 14 by Hetmyer at long-off in his first over. Tahir then trapped Jason Mohammed plumb lbw for just 4 to reduce the Patriots to 51/4 in the 9th over.

    The Patriots took the bold decision to promote left-hander Dominic Drakes to number six in a bid to counter the leg-spin threat on the back of his record-breaking 34 not out – the highest ever T20 score by a number 11 – against Barbados Tridents last time out.

    It didn’t work. He was dropped by Hetmyer on nought but caught by Ahmed two balls later to give Tahir a second wicket off an eventful over and sum up a night to forget for the Patriots.

  • Hansen tells All Blacks to embrace chance to make history Hansen tells All Blacks to embrace chance to make history

    Steve Hansen insisted the All Blacks were embracing the pressure of trying to win a third straight Rugby World Cup.

    New Zealand made history by becoming the first nation to win the tournament back-to-back when they clinched the title in England in 2015.

    Aiming for a hat-trick in Japan, Hansen said it was something the All Blacks – who begin their campaign against South Africa on Saturday – were excited about.

    "It's extremely exciting. Trying to do things that no one else has ever done before is a hallmark of what New Zealand people are about," he told a news conference.

    "We came away from the home shores and settled in a country at the bottom of the Earth. We had to find ways to live in isolation. You know, life wasn't like it is today so they've become pioneers and I think that's really important in anything.

    "In life, particularly in sport, you've got to strive to be leaders rather than followers and we get an opportunity that no one else at the tournament gets.

    "We can either shy away from that or get really excited by it and we're excited by it."

    The All Blacks will go into the tournament as favourites and are in Pool B alongside South Africa, Italy, Namibia and Canada.

    Captain Kieran Read accepted there was pressure on his team, but he said they were welcoming it.

    "Obviously there's pressure but I guess it's how you look at that pressure," he said.

    "You know, whether that's something to overcome you or you walk towards that and you actually enjoy that so we wouldn't be sitting here as a part of this tournament if we didn't relish these opportunities to play at that highest level.

    "And the World Cup is the highest level. It's what you want to do when you pick up this game and play for your country so look, we walk towards that expectation and we really relish it so that's what we're hoping to do this tournament."

  • Ashes 2019: Paine 'having a mare' with referrals Ashes 2019: Paine 'having a mare' with referrals

    Tim Paine joked he will enrol on an umpiring course after conceding Australia are having "a mare" with their reviews during the Ashes.

    Australia finished day three of the fifth and final Test trailing England by 382 runs. The tourists need to avoid defeat to win the series outright having already retained the urn but endured a challenging day in the field as England closed on 318-8.

    Joe Denly was the star for England with 94, though Australia could have dismissed him for considerably fewer runs had they reviewed after Mitchell Marsh struck the opener on the pads.

    Denly was given not out on the field but Hawk-Eye showed the ball would have gone on to hit the stumps, as it would later in the innings when Australia again chose not to review after Nathan Lyon hit Jos Buttler, who made a fluent 46, in front.

    Asked in a media conference what he can do to improve his judgment, the Australia skipper responded sarcastically: "I'm going to do some umpire school when I get home, I'll enrol in a level three umpiring course and see if I can get them right.

    "I'm getting it wrong, I don't know what else to say, we're having a mare. We've got it wrong, we're not deliberately getting together and saying, 'Gee I reckon that's out Gaz, you want to refer it? Nah let's let him keep batting.'

    "We're getting it wrong, it happens, it's fast, it's a tough job. As I've said throughout the whole Test series, I've got a new respect for umpiring, particularly in Test cricket because it's a bloody hard job.

    "For years players have whinged about umpiring and now we've got it in our hands a little bit and we're finding that it's hard."

    Australia appeared tired and frustrated as their long and chastening day in the field dragged on, though Paine had no issues with his side's application on Saturday.

    "The last hour of today, our energy is still really good in the field, our bowlers have run in every single day we've asked them to, they've done a fantastic job," added Paine.

    "The only thing that's been a little bit disappointing in this Test match is our catching and our referrals."

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