England wrapped up victory in the Twenty20 series against South Africa with a game to spare in Paarl thanks to a second successive last-over triumph.

Having overhauled the Proteas' total of 179-6 with four balls in hand in Friday's opener in Cape Town, England managed to reach a target of 147 from the penultimate delivery on Sunday.

A slow, low surface made batting difficult for both teams, though Dawid Malan played a crucial knock of 55 from 40 deliveries in the successful chase as England earned a four-wicket win.

The left-hander hit a six and seven fours as he overcame a sluggish start - he managed just 25 runs from his first 30 balls - to perfectly pick up the pace in the closing overs, putting on 51 for the fifth wicket with Eoin Morgan.

Lungi Ngidi (2-51) dismissed Malan courtesy of a stunning catch by Reeza Hendricks on the boundary, though England still managed 18 from that 18th over, leaving them with a simple requirement at the finish.

Chris Jordan struck the winning blow off Kagiso Rabada as captain Morgan finished unbeaten on 26, able to celebrate a 30th T20 victory during his time in charge of the team.

Tabraiz Shamsi claimed 3-25 for South Africa on a pitch that helped the spinners, Adil Rashid having picked up 2-24 earlier as England restricted their hosts to 146-6.

Rashid dismissed Hendricks and Faf du Plessis with successive deliveries – the latter stumped for the first time at international level in the format - to become only the fourth man to reach 50 T20 wickets for England.

There was also a notable milestone for team-mate Jordan too, as Quinton de Kock (30) became his 65th wicket in T20 internationals, putting him joint-top on England's all-time list, alongside Stuart Broad.

George Linde made a lively 29 off 20 balls but South Africa struggled to break the shackles. They will aim to avoid suffering a 3-0 series sweep when the teams meet again for the third and final game on Tuesday.

West Indies were outplayed by New Zealand and lost by 72 runs in the second T20 International on Sunday (Saturday night Caribbean Time) at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui.

Steve Smith smashed another 62-ball hundred as Australia's cruised to victory over India in the second ODI at the SCG to clinch the series.

Smith was in blistering form in the first match on Friday as he scored Australia's third-fastest ODI century.

He replicated that remarkable performance to help the hosts post their best ODI score at the SCG, their second-highest overall on home soil, the hosts reaching 389-4.

Virat Kohli (89) led the way for India in their pursuit of a mammoth target, but the India captain's efforts proved in vain as the tourists fell 51 runs short.

David Warner and Aaron Finch laid the platform for Australia with an opening stand of 142, having combined for their team's highest opening stand of 156 in the opening game.

Skipper Finch was caught at extra cover for 60 before Warner was run out for 83 after making the ill-advised decision to push for a second that Shreyas Iyer punished.

But it was Smith (104) who again proved the talisman for Australia, racking up 14 fours and a pair of sixes in a destructive innings.

He and Marnus Labuschagne (70) put on 136 for the third wicket, though Smith was dismissed two deliveries after reaching three figures – edging Hardik Pandya to short third man.

Glenn Maxwell struck four fours and four sixes in his 29-ball 63 to push Australia towards a score India rarely had any hope of besting.

A groin injury suffered by Warner, who was sent to hospital for scans, was the primary setback for Australia as they defended their total.

Kohli and Iyer steadied the ship for India after they were reduced to 60-2 by putting on 93.

However, Iyer fell victim to a tremendous diving catch from Smith at midwicket. After a partnership of 72 with KL Rahul (76), Kohli was undone in similar fashion courtesy of a stunner from Moises Henriques.

India's lower-order faltered after Rahul was caught at short third man, leaving the tourists with nothing but pride to play for in Wednesday's third ODI.

Glenn Phillips was delighted to provide the crowd at Mount Maunganui with an innings to remember after he struck New Zealand's fastest-ever Twenty20 international century. 

Phillips – playing in just his 13th T20 game for his country – struck a 46-ball ton as the Black Caps amassed a huge 238-3 in a series-clinching victory over West Indies. 

It was the 23-year-old's first international hundred, Phillips hitting eight sixes and 10 fours in total before suffering a recurrence of a freak knee injury he sustained in the first game in Auckland. 

He battled on, but his innings came to an end on 108 from 51 balls when he was dismissed by Kieron Pollard. 

Still, with crowds allowed back at sporting events in New Zealand, Phillips was thrilled to have put on a show in the 72-run win. 

"That's just an incredible day. You don't get them very often, make the most of it," Phillips said. 

"My whole thing is to try and be an entertainer for the crowd and, in that moment, having the crowds back, I wanted to give them something special, the whole team wanted to give them something special. It was amazing for me personally, (that) I could be part of it."

It has been a long slog for Phillips to establish himself in the New Zealand team in the shortest format, having made his T20 debut in February 2017. 

"I had to go back, work on things, and took a step back to be able to move forward again," he added. 

"Then I had the opportunities in the Caribbean [Premier League], which slowly worked my confidence back and I was able to have a couple of good performances, being able to come out against these boys has had a massive part of play in that. 

"To be able to produce the kind of freedom in my performance was the biggest thing for me, and I was absolutely ecstatic. You don't get those very often, and I was going to enjoy it." 

Phillips and New Zealand have one more T20 contest remaining at Mount Maunganui, followed by Test matches against West Indies in Hamilton and Wellington.

Former Jamaica and West Indies cricketer, Nehemiah Perry, is considering a bid to challenge for the post of Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) president next year.

If confirmed, it could mean a second consecutive challenge for incumbent Wilford ‘Billy’ Heaven.  Heaven easily saw off opposition from former vice-president Mark Neita in 2019 to secure a third two-year term.

While insisting that, at this point, a decision had yet to be made, Perry admitted that he was far from pleased with the current state of cricket on the island of Jamaica and it was an option he was strongly considering.

“It could be a possibility.  I’m not confirming that but I’m still giving it some thought.  It’s a lot that you have to give up,” Perry, who recently became president of Jamaica Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (JAIFA), told the Mason and Guest radio program.

“I strongly believe that we need some very good leadership and we need some serious work to bring back our cricket.  Our cricket is in a desperate situation and I think that management and leadership, we have to start from there to get everything streamlined so that the pathway is very clear,” he added.

Heaven has been president of the JCA since 2013 when then-president Lyndel Wright did not seek re-election.  Of interest, however, is the fact that Heaven’s upcoming re-election bid will be the first since the JCA is believed to have voted against fellow Jamaican Dave Cameron in his re-election bid for Cricket West Indies (CWI) president.  The move was widely condemned in some quarters of Jamaica’s local cricket fraternity.

 

West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell slammed a blistering 14-ball fifty, in a 34-run win for Colombo Kings over Galle Gladiators, who both featured in a severely shorted rain-affected Lanka Premier League fixture on Saturday.

The 32-year-old heavy hitter showed no signs of a recent injury or quarantine fatigue, as he crashed 13 of the 19 deliveries he faced to the boundary.  His total included nine fours and four sixes - en route to an unbeaten 65.

Overall, the score put Russell in elite company, as he became the joint fifth fastest scorer of a half-century in T20 cricket.  Only compatriot Chris Gayle, India’s Yuvraj Singh and Afghanistan’s Hazratullah Zazai who reached the mark in 12 deliveries, and England’s Marcus Trescothick, who reached the mark in 13, remain ahead of Russell on the list.

In getting to the total of 96 for 1 from five overs, Colombo lost Russell’s opening partner Thikshila de Silva who was dismissed for a golden duck.  After being sent in to bat, Russell by himself scored three more runs than the entire Gladiators team when they unsuccessfully chased the target.  In fact, he was on 44 from 11 balls and just one six away from matching the fastest T20 half-century but could only take one run from the 12th delivery he faced.

 Danushka Gunathilaka top-scored for Gala with an unbeaten 30 as the Gladiators managed to get to 62 for 2.   

Nicholas Pooran, Rovman Powell, and a number of others will get a brief chance to show their aptitude for cricket’s longest format, as they were expectedly named in a 14-man West Indies A squad to face New Zealand A next month.

In recent months, there have been calls to consider the in-form Pooran, in particular, for the Test cricket format, with his advocates insisting the shot maker has the ability to adapt. 

Chief of selectors Roger Harper, as a result, extended the invitation to players on the current tour interested in playing a set of three-day games that will take place at roughly the same time as the team’s Test matches.

In addition to the interested white-ball specialists, the team will consist of six reserve Test players.

 “This series will give our players an opportunity to play first-class cricket against foreign opposition as well as experience different conditions here in New Zealand,” Harper was quoted as saying.

“It will also help to keep them in the frame should the need for replacements for the Test team arise, as we will have players who have been playing red-ball cricket and in-form to consider.”

 

FULL SQUAD

Fabian Allen

Nkrumah Bonner

Joshua DaSilva

Brandon King

Kyle Mayers

Preston McSween

Shayne Moseley

Nicholas Pooran

Rovman Powell

Raymon Reifer

Jayden Seales

Romario Shepherd

Oshane Thomas

Hayden Walsh

 

West Indies “A” Team Tour Schedule

December 3-6: West Indies “A” vs New Zealand "A" at Bay Oval

December 11-14: West Indies “A” vs New Zealand “A” at Saxton Oval, Nelson

West Indies fast bowler Chemar Holder claimed two quick wickets to lead the team’s incursions into the New Zealand A batting line-up, as the hosts made it to 249/4 at stumps, on day three of the tour match in Queenstown.

The reply, anchored by Will Young’s unbeaten 80 from 161 balls, left the Kiwis still some 322 runs short of the Windies’ mammoth first innings total of 571.  New Zealand resumed day 3 at 45 without loss and pushed on to 100 before spinner Rahkeem Cornwall got the breakthrough, with the lbw dismissal of Rachin Ravindra. 

Ten overs later, his opening partner Henry Cooper also departed the scene after being trapped lbw off the bowling of Holder.  He left the crease having tallied a patient 54 in close to 200 minutes.  Joe Carter was next to bat but did not last long.  He only faced eight deliveries, making one run, before being caught behind by Shane Dowrich off Holder.

West Indies captain Jason Holder then got in on the act with a delivery that caught Ken McClure lbw just before tea.  McClure made 20 runs and faced 53 deliveries.  New Zealand A captain Cole McConchie, however, partnered with Young to steady the ship before bad light ended the day’s play.

Jonny Bairstow hit his highest Twenty20 International score as England defeated South Africa by five wickets in the first game of their three-match series.

Faf du Plessis got 58 as South Africa posted a competitive total of 179-6 after England won the toss and elected to bowl at Newlands on Friday.

A successful run chase was looking unlikely for the tourists by the time they fell to 34-3 in the sixth over, but Bairstow scored 86 not out from just 48 balls in a superb innings.

After dropping down to number four in the order, Bairstow hit nine fours and four sixes, sealing victory with four deliveries to spare with a huge maximum.

Ben Stokes (37) provided good support as England took a big step towards winning a third consecutive T20I series against South Africa, who are playing their first international cricket since March.

The second match is in Paarl on Sunday before the series concludes back in Cape Town next Tuesday.

CAPTAIN AND FORMER SKIPPER SET UP PROTEAS

England made a good start with the Proteas only mustering 12 runs from the first three overs.

But a six from captain Quinton de Kock off Jofra Archer (1-28) sparked 38 runs in just two overs to kick-start the South Africa innings and he went on to build a partnership of 77 with former skipper Du Plessis.

Chris Jordan (1-40) ultimately removed De Kock for 30 and then claimed a catch at deep square leg to end the 40-ball innings of Du Plessis.

But by that point South Africa were 110-3 and a platform had been set for Rassie van der Dussen (37) to keep up the pace.

BAIRSTOW BOOSTS ENGLAND

Stokes made an astonishing Test-best 258 in Cape Town in January 2016 and Bairstow also shone in that game, scoring a maiden Test ton.

The duo impressed again by putting on a crucial 85 partnership, but Bairstow still had plenty to do when Stokes holed out to long on off the bowling of Tabraiz Shamsi (1-27).

After Eoin Morgan (12) made a slow start, England suddenly needed 55 from 25 but Bairstow hit six of his side's eight boundaries from there in an impressive finish.

LINDE AND SAM CURRAN IMPRESS

It was a good T20I debut for South Africa's George Linde, who hit a quickfire 12 from six balls with the bat before taking 2-20, including the early wicket of Jason Roy (0), plus a key catch to remove Stokes.

While Tom Curran (1-55) struggled, Sam was the pick of the England bowlers, with figures of 3-28 from his four overs and the crucial wicket of Du Plessis.

He later hit a six with the bat in the penultimate over to help settle the tourists' nerves after Morgan's dismissal.

West Indies captain Kieron Pollard has backed the team to rebound following a disappointing five-wicket loss to open its three-match T20I series against New Zealand on Friday.

For his part, Pollard crafted a masterful unbeaten 75 as the team posted 180 for 7, but in the rain-affected fixture the hosts chased down the total with a 179 for five response from 15.2 overs to win via the Duckworth/Lewis method.

Despite setting a reasonable total there will be plenty for the West Indies to ponder in the loss.  They got off to a fast start after racing to 58 without loss in 19 balls courtesy of Andre Fletcher’s 14-ball 34, following his dismissal the team lost five wickets in 11 balls.

In chasing down the target, Jimmy Neesham and Devon Conway led a New Zealand recovery, pulling the team back from 63 for 4 mid-way the seventh over to get a comfortable victory in the end.  They were aided by plenty of wayward bowling.  Keemo Paul and Kesrick Williams being were particularly culpable. Paul bowled five no-balls while giving up 39 runs from his three overs while Williams’ half volleys saw him being taken for 33 runs from two overs.

“We will continue to fight, hopefully, we will get over the line and set up an exciting third match for the final game,” Pollard told members of the media following the match.

“We definitely have to look at our plans and come back, in terms of the bowling aspect of it and try not to lose wickets in clusters, these are conversations that we continue to have but as cricket goes sometimes these things play a part.”

West Indies white-ball captain Kieron Pollard blames his side’s erratic bowling for their five-wicket loss to New Zealand in Auckland on Friday.

Steve Smith smashed Australia's third-fastest ODI century and Aaron Finch also made a sublime hundred as India were consigned to a 66-run defeat in the first match of the series.

Smith struck a sensational 105 from just 66 balls and Finch crafted 114 in Australia's massive total of 374-6 - their biggest against India in the 50-over format.

David Warner (69) also made the tourists suffer, while Glenn Maxwell bludgeoned 45 from only 19 balls in Australia's second-highest ODI total at the SCG.

Mohammed Shami (3-59) was comfortably the pick of the India bowlers on a painful Friday afternoon in the field.

Hardik Pandya struck a superb 90 and Shikhar Dhawan made 74, but India, returning to action for the first time since March due to the coronavirus pandemic, fell short on 308-8 in reply.

Josh Hazlewood (3-55) and Adam Zampa (4-54) did the damage with the ball for Australia as they started their summer in style to go 1-0 up in the three-match series.


FINCH AND WARNER MAKE HISTORY

Finch and Warner combined for the highest opening stand for Australia in an ODI at the SCG, their 156 surpassing the record of 152 set by Geoff Marsh and David Boon in 1986.

Shami finally got the breakthrough in the 28th over, snaring Warner caught behind after Virat Kohli reviewed, but Finch and Smith dished out more punishment, putting on 108 in just 12 overs.

The brilliant Finch struck two sixes and another nine fours in his fourth ODI century against India, a tally only Ricky Ponting has bettered with six, before the skipper became Jasprit Bumrah's only victim.

SENSATIONAL SMITH AND MAXWELL GO BESERK

While Finch uncharacteristically scored at less than a run a ball, Smith raced to a magnificent hundred which he reached off 62 balls.

Smith failed to hit the heights during the recent Indian Premier League but produced a disdainful knock as he dispatched the tourists' attack to all parts - Yuzvendra Chahal (1-89) conceding the most runs by an India spinner in an ODI.

The imperious Smith hit four sixes and 11 fours as he put on a show along with Maxwell, who treated the crowd to some astonishing innovative strokes in an explosive innings.

HAZLEWOOD AND ZAMPA DERAIL INDIA CHASE

India's run chase got off to a blistering start, Mitchell Starc conceding 20 off an 11-ball first over, but they were struggling on 101-4 in the 14th over - Kohli making just 21 after he was dropped by Zampa on one.

Hazlewood had Kohli caught by Finch at midwicket and the quick also saw the back of Mayank Agarwal and Shreyas Iyer.

Dhawan - dropped by Maxwell on 41 - and Pandya - playing as a specialist batsman - gave India hope with a fifth-wicket stand of 128, but spinner Zampa removed both in quick succession and got rid of Ravindra Jadeja in an ultimately comfortable win for Australia.

New Zealand ‘A’ were 45 without loss at stumps on day two of their warm-up match with the West Indies in Queenstown.

A dramatic batting collapse and poor bowling were at the root of the West Indies five-wicket loss to New Zealand in the opening encounter of their three-match T20 series in Auckland on Friday.

In a match interrupted several times by rain, the West Indies lost five wickets for one run but recovered to 180 for 7 from 16 overs thanks to some calculated hitting from their captain, Kieron Pollard.

However, New Zealand replied with 179 for five from 15.2 overs to win by Duckworth/Lewis method.

The home side won the toss and asked the visitors to bat and they obliged racing to 58 without loss in 19 balls courtesy of Andre Fletcher’s 14-ball 34 that included three fours and three sixes.

However, when he was bowled by Lockie Ferguson the second ball of the fourth over, it triggered a collapse wherein the West Indies lost five wickets in 11 balls. Four balls later, he had Shimron Hetmyer caught behind without scoring – 58 for 2.

The West Indies lost two wickets in the following over bowled by Tim Southee, who removed Brandon King for 13 and Rovman Powell without scoring as the West Indies stumbled to 58 for 4. In the very next over, Ferguson trapped Nicholas Pooran lbw for 1 and the West Indies had collapsed to 59 for 5.

Pollard came to the rescue of the Caribbean side as he and Fabian Allen hauled the West Indies to 143 in the 14th over when Ferguson had Allen caught for 30 behind and Keemo Paul out by a similar route without scoring to leave the West Indies 146 for 7.

Meanwhile, at the other end Pollard was at his destructive best, smashing 75 off just 37 balls with four fours and eight sixes to carry the Caribbean side to a competitive total.

Man of the Match Ferguson returned figures of 5 for 21 from his four overs, while Southee took 2 for 22 from 3.

However, the Pollard-led recovery was all for naught as New Zealand, led by Neesham’s unbeaten 24-ball 48 and Devon Conway’s 29-ball 41, propelled New Zealand to 179 for 5 from 15.2overs and the series lead.

Neesham and Conway dragged New Zealand back from 63 for 4 mid-way the seventh over to what turned out to be a comfortable victory. In a fifth-wicket stand of 77 that came off just 34 balls, the pair smashed the West Indies bowling to all parts before Conway fell to Pollard in the 13th over but by then the damage had been done.

Mitchell Santer picked up from there smashing three sixes as he raced to an unbeaten 31 from just 18 balls to secure victory.

New Zealand were aided by poor bowling from the West Indies, especially from Keemo Paul and Kesrick Williams being, who were most culpable. Paul bowled five no-balls while giving up 39 runs from his three overs while Williams’ half volleys saw him being taken for 33 runs from two overs. Allen gave up 32 from two overs.

Oshane Thomas 2 for 23 from three overs was the best of the West Indies bowlers while Sheldon Cottrell returned figures of 1 for 30 from his four overs.

 

 

Kraigg Brathwaite completed a double-century on day two of their warm-up match against New Zealand ‘A’ at Queenstown as the West Indies went to lunch on 463 for 4.

At the break, Brathwaite was unbeaten on 235 and Shane Dowrich, 19. So far the pair have added 34 runs for the fifth wicket from nine overs.

Resuming from his overnight score of 183 and the West Indies 353 for 3, Brathwaite and Jermaine Blackwood, 19 overnight, pushed the score for 429 when the latter was bowled by Rachin Ravindra for 53.

Blackwood scored his runs from 82 balls in his 115-minute stay at the crease during which he hit four fours. Together the pair that came together at 322 for 3, put in 107 runs in 27.1 overs as the West Indies continued to build on their massive total.

Ravindra has taken 2 for 59 from 19 overs.

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