St Lucia Zouks skipper Darren Sammy has expressed frustration with the team’s reading of its own home field conditions following a loss to the table-topping Amazon Warriors in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) on Wednesday.

For the playoff-chasing team, the loss came on the back of a win of against St Kitts and Nevis Patriots.  Defending 161 against the Warriors, however, the Zouks were unable to repeat the type of performance, that was typified by energetic efficiency.

“As a team we have just not executed our plans.  Especially when you are playing at home where you know the conditions, we are getting a lesson from the opposition about how to play on the wicket and it should be the other way around,” Sammy said.

“We have two games left and they are must-win.  We have Jamaica next and we are going to come back stronger.”

Having played eight games so far the Zouks are in fourth spot on five points, ahead of the Barbados Tridents on four and the last place Jamaica Tallawahs who also have four.  The Tridents have, however, played two games less to date.

 

 

Brandon King’s unbeaten 81 helped Guyana Amazon Warriors make it a magnificent seven wins out of seven in their 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) campaign with a comfortable eight-wicket victory over St Lucia Zouks at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground.

The Warriors are assured of a top-two finish and with it a place in the first qualifier for a place in the final with the safety net of a second chance should they lose that one.

The Zouks remain fourth but may need win both their remaining games to have a decent chance of staying there given the Tridents are just a point behind with two games in hand.

No such concerns for the Warriors, though, who were given the ideal start to their pursuit of 162 for victory here by Chandrapaul Hemraj, who smashed two fours and three Hero Maximums in a 20-ball 33 that put Guyana ahead of the eight-an-over required rate at the outset.

When he fell, skying a sweep shot off Fawad Ahmed, King took up the charge having been relatively quiet while Hemraj was doing his thing. All but one of King’s six sixes came after Hemraj had been dismissed and, despite the loss of Shimron Hetmyer for just 5 to a caught behind decision that displeased him, the Warriors reached the 10-over mark exactly halfway to their target at 81/2 with plenty of batting options still to come. They didn’t need it, King and Shoaib Malik, who finished on 30, easing the Warriors past the target with almost two overs to spare with an unbroken 92-run stand for the third wicket.

After 12 overs, that required rate of 8.1 from the last 10 had come down to barely a run a ball thanks to King. He took Barnwell’s first three balls for two sixes and a four, with Shoaib Malik striking another four through backward point to round off an over that put 21 on the total. Along the way, King reached another classy half-century and the Warriors passed 100.

Suddenly, the target was a routine 49 from 48 and from there it was a cruise for the table-toppers, Malik stroking the winning single down the ground with 10 balls to spare.

Earlier, there was another masterclass in spin bowling from the Warriors. All six overs of the Powerplay were bowled by spinners, with Chris Green and Imran Tahir particularly impressive. Their five overs under the fielding restrictions gave up just 20 runs. At one point the pair between them bowled 10 successive deliveries without conceding a run while the Zouks lost their first two wickets.

Andre Fletcher was first to go, skying one miles into the St Lucia sky and being well held by Ben Laughlin to give Tahir the first of his two wickets. The second was a bad moment for Rahkeem Cornwall, run out having failed to run his bat in yet being so far over the crease that he almost made his ground with his foot.

From 21/0 after three overs, the Zouks found themselves 24/2 in the sixth.

The Colins Ingram and de Grandhomme set about repairing the damage. De Grandhomme ended the runless streak by depositing Green onto the grass banks at midwicket.

Ingram contributed 25 from 14 balls to a 56-run stand before drilling Tahir low, hard and flat to long-off where Green held a stinging running catch.

De Grandhomme carried on, though, and reached an excellent half-century – his first in the Hero CPL - from just 27 balls with four Hero Maximums.

What he lacked, though, was further Ingram-style support. Jahmar Hamilton and Daren Sammy each made 9 off 10 and 15 balls respectively, and the pressure to accelerate the scoring began to tell on de Grandhomme who duly holed out for 65 when there were still three overs left where he could have caused some damage.

Barnwell did give the Zouks one final lift by taking Shepherd for three successive sixes in the 19th over, but the 20th from Laughlin was superb. He picked up two wickets while conceding just three singles to finish with eye-catching figures of 3/12 from three overs and leave the Zouks well short of where they needed to be.

The Trinbago Knight Riders have announced that Chris Jordan will be joining the team for the remainder of the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Jordan will be replacing Mohammad Hasnain who has returned to Pakistan for domestic and international commitments.

Barbadian born Jordan has played eight Tests, 31 ODIs and 39 T20Is for England, picking up 111 international wickets in those matches.

He has played T20 cricket in the T20 Blast in the UK, the Big Bash in Australia, the Pakistan Super League and the Indian Premier League.

 Former West Indies fast bowler Winston Benjamin believes young paceman Alazarri Joseph has been hampered by being drafted into the regional team as an undercooked product.

Joseph was called into the Windies squad three years ago as a talented 19-year-old and has for far played 9 Test matches and claimed 25 wickets.  In one day international’s (ODI) the bowler has made 16 appearances and claimed 24 wickets.  During the period, the player has struggled with both injuries and inconsistency.  Benjamin does not believe the shortcomings are a surprise.

“Let us face facts; when Alzarri got into the West Indies team we were in dire need of fast bowlers and he basically got in on his potential. I worked with him from since he was 15 years old and I said I would like to have another two years with him and then by that time, you would have seen the difference,” Benjamin told Antigua radio show Good Morning Jojo Sports Show.

“He’s here and he’s there, [and] our work was not completed, so he learns from the top [when] everybody else learns from the bottom up. Rabada and all those guys, their thing is structured where you have coaches for every meal of the day and every direction you turn,” he added.

The former fast bowler has admitted to being impressed with the progress the young bowler has made in recent months and believes he could be on the way to fulfilling his potential.

 

St Lucia Zouks jumped from last place in the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) table to a playoff spot with a fine 20-run victory over St Kitts & Nevis Patriots at the Daren Sammy Stadium.

Shakib Al Hasan is to replace Sandeep Lamichhance the Barbados Tridents squad, the franchise has announced.

Bangladesh and Afghanistan have shared the trophy from their Twenty20 tri-series after Tuesday's final was rained off in Dhaka.

​The two sides reached the final of the three-team tournament by getting the better of Zimbabwe, who recorded just a single win against Afghanistan when they had already been eliminated.

But the series could not be decided following heavy rain around the scheduled clash at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium.

The contest was initially delayed as the teams waited for the weather to pass, before the abandonment and shared result was confirmed.

India's star paceman Jasprit Bumrah will miss the upcoming Tests against South Africa with a back issue.

The sides drew 1-1 in their rain-affected three-match Twenty20 series but India have been dealt a blow ahead of the opening Test against the Proteas next week as Bumrah has been ruled out.

The 25-year-old has suffered a minor stress fracture in his lower back, the Board of Control for Cricket in India said in a short statement on Twitter, and he has been replaced by Umesh Yadav.

Bumrah has enjoyed an outstanding start to life in Test cricket since his January 2018 debut.

He has played 12 Tests and collected 62 wickets, including an impressive five five-wicket hauls, taking a hat-trick in his last match against West Indies in August.

Jamaica Tallawahs picked up just their second win of the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) after successfully defending 127 all out to stun Barbados Tridents by five runs in a thriller at the Kensington Oval.

There appeared little hope for the Tallawahs after a largely disappointing effort with the bat, but the Tridents found themselves behind the required rate at the halfway stage and, as the pressure grew, the wickets started to fall. Shamar Springer took 3/32 and Imran Khan 3/19 as the Tallawahs kept their slim Hero CPL playoff hopes alive with an unlikely win.

Alex Hales got the run-chase off to a positive start with a pair of Hero Maximums in the third over but fell to Zahir Khan soon after, smartly caught by Jade Dernbach diving to his right at square-leg. They were the only sixes the Tridents hit until the 19th over as their batting fell away in the face of tight Tallawahs bowling.

Justin Greaves and JP Duminy fell in quick succession to Imran Khan and Dwayne Smith while Jonathan Carter (17) and Johnson Charles (31) did likewise to Springer after their partnership had appeared to get things back on course.

At 78/5 the game was right back in the balance, and Tridents captain Jason Holder couldn’t tilt it back in his side’s favour as a slog-sweep off Imran Khan went straight up in the air to be caught by keeper Glenn Phillips.

Springer bounced out Ashley Nurse before Roshon Primus ran past one from Imran Khan to be comprehensively stumped as the Tridents found themselves 90/8 and staring down the barrel.

There was still time for another twist, Raymon Reifer smashing 26 from just 12 balls with two fours and two sixes to reduce the target from a daunting 30 off two overs to a far more manageable six from the last three balls. But when he carved Dwayne Smith to Springer at deep cover the game was up as the Tridents slumped to an eighth consecutive home defeat in the Hero CPL.

For most of the night, that result had seemed so unlikely. Things started to go wrong for the Tallawahs as early as the second over of their innings when Chris Gayle chopped on to give Jason Holder the first of his two wickets.

Chadwick Walton was then superbly caught at slip by a diving Nurse off Sandeep Lamichhane, but at 51/2 in the eighth over with Glenn Phillips well set, the Tallawahs weren’t badly placed.

Five overs later, they were 78/7. George Worker chipped JP Duminy to Alex Hales at deep cover before a Dwayne Smith miscue picked out Greaves to give Lamichhane the second wicket of a hugely impressive spell.

Reifer got the big wicket of 2019 Hero CPL leading run-scorer Phillips edged behind after striking two fours in the previous three balls. Phillips had been looking increasingly assured on 41. It was an innings whose true worth would only become clear much later in the night.

Imran Khan fell to Holder in identical fashion and Javelle Glen drilled a cover-drive straight to Duminy.

There was a partnership of sorts between Springer and Ramaal Lewis before the former skied Tridents new boy Harry Gurney to cover. His first Tridents wicket was deserved reward for an inventive and economical spell.

A brief but heavy shower forced a delay late in the innings, and Lewis came out a man possessed for what would prove a vital final nine deliveries of the Tallawahs innings. He bludgeoned two huge sixes down the ground off Reifer before carving over extra-cover for four more.

He fell caught behind to the penultimate ball of the innings for a crucial 27, and Zahir Khan was run out attempting a second run from the last to leave the Tallawahs 127 all out. Against the odds, it would prove just enough.

India captain Virat Kohli has been sanctioned by the International Cricket Council following his clash with South Africa's Beuran Hendricks during Sunday's third T20I.

Kohli has received a demerit point and an official warning for an "inappropriate" shoulder contact with fast bowler Hendricks, who took 2-14 before South Africa prevailed by nine wickets in Bengaluru.

This amounts to the 30-year-old being found guilty of a Level 1 breach of the ICC Code of Conduct

Kohli has now committed three offences since the ICC introduced its revised code in September 2016, meaning he faces a ban if he errs similarly again.

During last year's Test against South Africa at Centurion, he was fined 25 per cent of his match fee for his complaints to on-field umpire Michael Gough about the state of a damp ball – actions deemed "contrary to the spirit of the game".

When India faced Afghanistan at the World Cup in June, Kohli was punished for "excessive appealing and charging aggressively towards the umpire".

On both occasions, he was given a demerit point.

Under the ICC code, demerit points remain on a player's disciplinary record for two years. If they accrue four or more points within a 24-month period they are converted into suspension points – meaning a ban is handed down.

Jonny Bairstow has been left out of England's Test squad for the tour of New Zealand in November.

The Yorkshire batsman is in the 15-man Twenty20 group but misses out on the two-match series against the Black Caps, having failed to impress during the 2-2 Ashes draw with Australia on home soil.

Dominic Sibley has won a first call-up after an exceptional County Championship with Warwickshire, alongside Matt Parkinson, Zak Crawley and Saqib Mahmood.

Lancashire's Parkinson and Worcestershire seamer Pat Brown are included in the T20 squad for the first time, as is Tom Banton, who hit 549 runs for Somerset in the Vitality Blast.

Injured trio James Anderson, Mark Wood and Olly Stone are left out, the former now working on being fit for the tour of South Africa, which starts in December.

The two Tests against New Zealand, due to start on November 21 and 29, do not form part of the ICC World Test Championship.

The five-match T20I series gets underway in Christchurch on November 1.

England Test squad:

Joe Root (captain), Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Joe Denly, Jack Leach, Saqib Mahmood, Matt Parkinson, Ollie Pope, Dominic Sibley, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes.

England T20 squad:

Eoin Morgan (captain), Jonny Bairstow, Tom Banton, Sam Billings, Pat Brown, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Joe Denly, Lewis Gregory, Chris Jordan, Saqib Mahmood, Dawid Malan, Matt Parkinson, Adil Rashid, James Vince.

Guyana Amazon Warriors opened a three-point lead at the top of the 2019 Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) table as they extended their perfect start to the season to six matches and guaranteed a playoff spot with a rain-affected victory over Barbados Tridents at the Kensington Oval.

The Warriors dismissed the Tridents for just 138, Chris Green taking the last four wickets to fall and conceding just 14 runs in his 3.2 overs, before reaching 77/2 after 10 overs of the run-chase when heavy rain held up play for an hour. When play resumed, the Warriors’ target of 62 from the last 60 balls had been reduced to 20 from 24.

They added four from the 11th over before the rain returned again to finish things off with the Warriors 81/2 and still comfortably clear of a DLS par score of 69. 

The one over possible after the initial rain delay did at least allow Brandon King to complete a fine half-century having been left stranded on 49 not out when the players had first left the field..

He and Chandrapaul Hemraj had been watchful at the start of the Warriors’ initial pursuit of 139 for victory but still took the score past 50 in the Powerplay as King in particular began to cut loose.

King took Ashley Nurse for 10 in two balls as the spinner’s first over leaked 15 runs, while King smashed his second Hero Maximum from the final ball of the sixth over as Jason Holder dropped short.

That took the total and partnership to 52 before Nurse’s problems continued in the field as he put down a simple chance offered by King on 30. Two balls later, King planted his third six of the night over midwicket.

There was some respite for the Tridents when Hemraj chipped a return catch to Sandeep Lamichhane for 20 and Shimron Hetmyer was very smartly caught and bowled by JP Duminy for just 2 but by then the required rate was already down to just a run a ball.

King continued to impress, taking Lamichhane for back-to-back boundaries to end the tenth over and, as it turned out, the contest as the initial drizzle turned quickly into something more substantial.

With 77/2 on the board, the Warriors were 16 ahead of the DLS par score of 61, with the only minor disappointment for them being King left stranded one short of a half-century on 49* from 30 balls. Something he rectified when they returned to the field. 

Earlier, The Tridents lost regular wickets throughout a rather frenetic innings, which meant even when the run-rate was healthy – 63 runs came in the six-over Powerplay at the top of the innings – their position was always fragile.

Unsurprisingly, the run-rate slowed as the hosts were forced to keep one eye on their wickets in hand.

And even that approach didn’t work out in the end, Green taking the last four wickets of the innings to leave the Tridents well short.

The tone was set in the very first over, a slightly wild effort from Keemo Paul that brought 17 runs, but also the crucial wicket of Johnson Charles as he sliced a wide ball all the way to Imran Tahir at third-man.

Justin Greaves, so impressive on debut, got a couple of good-looking boundaries away but holed out off Romario Shepherd for 11. That too was a recurring theme. Alex Hales looked good for his 24 before picking out deep midwicket from the first ball of Tahir’s second over, while Jason Holder, Leniko Boucher, Raymon Reifer, and Lamichhane all fell going for big shots early in their innings.

Even Duminy, who held the whole thing together with a 32-ball 38 featuring two fours and two Hero Maximums, was caught in the deep attempting to pull Green over square-leg.

Jonathan Carter was undone by a fine leg-break from Tahir, lbw after a lengthy deliberation from the umpire, while Nurse was smartly stumped by Nicholas Pooran to help Green on his way to figures of 4/14.

That represented the second-best bowling return of the 2019 Hero CPL – only Green’s team-mate Shepherd has done better, with 4/13 against these same opponents in Match Six.

Rain was the winner after only 12.2 overs were possible in Saturday’s Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) clash between St Lucia Zouks and Trinbago Knight Riders at Daren Sammy Stadium.

Colin Ingram was the star of what play was possible, getting off the mark with two sixes within the first four balls he faced and making his way to 52 not out from 36 before the rain arrived.

He put on 51 for the third wicket with Colin de Grandhomme (17 from 16) after Andre Fletcher and John Campbell both fell to the first ball of new spells.

Fletcher was caught by Khary Pierre off Ali Khan’s first ball of the night, while Campbell was superbly caught and bowled by Jimmy Neesham, who stuck out a right hand in his follow-through to pouch a ball hit back at him with interest.

Neesham had a far simpler task to dismiss de Grandhomme when his New Zealand team-mate miscued Kieron Pollard straight to him at cover, while Rahkeem Cornwall – moved down the order to number five for this game – sliced Pierre to Khan at short third-man from the final ball before the rain arrived.

Both teams take a point apiece from the abandoned game, leaving the Knight Riders a point behind Guyana Amazon Warriors at the top of the table while the Zouks move within a point of Barbados Tridents in the final playoff spot.

The Zouks are next in action against St Kitts & Nevis Patriots on Tuesday, while the Knight Riders now travel to Barbados to face the Tridents on Thursday.

Afghanistan suffered a second Twenty20 defeat in as many days as they were edged out by Bangladesh in a dress rehearsal for the tri-series final.

Rashid Khan's men had seen a record run of 12 consecutive wins ended when they lost to Zimbabwe on Friday, and another reverse followed thanks to an inspirational knock from Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan.

These two sides were already assured of places in Tuesday's final, with Zimbabwe out, but there was plenty for them to mull over from a topsy-turvy affair.

Afghanistan were sent in to bat first and started steadily before collapsing from 75-0 to 96-5, Afif Hossain – who claimed 2-9 from three overs - making the crucial breakthrough.

Shafiqullah's unbeaten 23 helped Afghanistan recover to a semi-respectable 138-7 and they looked to be in a promising position when Bangladesh struggled early on, 12-2 in the fourth over.

But Shakib (70 not out) lifted his side, continuing to battle away even as wickets started to fall around him, with Rashid Khan taking a pair despite briefly departing with an apparent hamstring issue.

Mosaddek Hossain joined his skipper in a strong late stand and Bangladesh reached their target with four wickets in hand and with an over to spare.

Veteran Windies batsman Chris Gayle has voiced his annoyance regarding constant speculation surrounding his future, particularly as it relates to expected retirement plans.

Gayle, who turns 40 tomorrow, announced that he planned to retire from the sport following the ICC World Cup a few months ago.  The player, however, seemed to have a change of heart later, insisting that he could play longer.  Following his appearance at the World Cup, Gayle participated in the Windies One Day International series against India.

 At the end of that series, it appeared several players and members of the media thought Gayle’s international career was at an end as he received a standing ovation.  The Windies talisman was, however, quick to announce that he had said nothing about retirement.  With the question continuing to linger, Gayle has made it clear he has grown weary of the speculation.

“The older you get is the wiser you get and it’s the more you feel a different sort of energy,” Gayle said in an interview posted by Jamaica Tallawahs.

"You get older you might feel a bit jaded here and there.  I’m turning 40 soon and I’m feeling pretty good.  I am going to rest aside this discussion about retirement,” Gayle added.

“It’s something I learned a couple of months ago.  When you make an actual statement about retiring while you are still playing it can be a bit complicated and it can get irritating and annoying.  I get annoyed when people say this and that so from now on, I won’t be answering anyone’s questions about retirement.”

 

 

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