Matthew Mott says England will not "throw the baby out with the bath water" for a monumental T20 World Cup showdown with Australia following their stunning defeat to Ireland.

England's hopes of qualifying for the semi-finals suffered a shock blow when they were consigned to a five-run Duckworth-Lewis-Stern loss at the hands of the Irish, with rain cutting short Wednesday's contest at the MCG.

Jos Buttler's side are third in Group 1 and must respond when they face a fifth-placed Australia side who are level on points with them.

Mott, England's Australian white-ball head coach, ruled out ringing the changes for a huge clash in Melbourne on Friday.

He said: "We have played really solid cricket for the last month…we are not going throw the baby out with the bath water. It's just business as usual. We'll go through the sessions, see who's pulled up well and make changes.

"But it is very unlikely to change the structure of the team. It might be a change here or two depending on how the bowlers pulled up."

Ben Stokes has failed to reach double figures in both World Cup knocks so far, but Mott expects the Test skipper to come good with the bat.

"He's an incredible player for our team," Mott said of the all-rounder. "He's a real leader in our group as well, apart from the official leaders.

"I thought his bowling has been a real bonus for us. I think a lot of people probably underestimate his bowling coming into this tournament.

"And he's been key for us. I think he's bowled some big overs particularly in the powerplay. With the bat, he hasn't come off yet. But his career would suggest that at some point someone's going to pay a price and hopefully that's Australia in a day's time."

Matthew Wade has tested positive for coronavirus but is expected to play in Australia's huge T20 World Cup showdown with England on Friday.

The wicketkeeper-batter returned a positive test on Wednesday evening, but only has minor symptoms.

Wade is set to feature at the MCG, provided his symptoms remain only minor, while spinner Adam Zampa is poised to play his first match of the tournament after he was sidelined by COVID-19.

Australia do not have a recognised back-up keeper in their squad after Josh Inglis suffered a hand injury prior to the tournament and was replaced by all-rounder Cameron Green.

Glenn Maxwell took the gloves in training on Thursday, but it would seem he will not be required to step in behind the stumps in a crucial Group 1 showdown.

The hosts are fifth in Group 1, two places behind England after they suffered a stunning five-run loss to Ireland by the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method in a rainy Melbourne on Wednesday.

Jos Buttler hopes to refocus England for a "massive" T20 World Cup encounter with Australia following their "poor" loss to Ireland at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Wednesday.

A rain-affected encounter ultimately came to a close with a famous victory for Andrew Balbirnie's side, with a five-run triumph via the DLS method.

With a win and a loss to their name so far, England's hopes of progression through to the semi-finals from a competitive Group 1 have taken a hit, though New Zealand's washout against Afghanistan will come as a boost.

Regardless, Buttler was left frustrated by his side's performance, and acknowledges their next match at the MCG, with their Ashes rivals, will be a do-or-die test.

"We were poor," he told the BBC's Test Match Special. "We were a long way short of where we needed to be, and we let Ireland get away from us. We won the toss, but we didn't take advantage.

"Friday is massive. This result has put a lot of pressure on us now, but it is as big as it can get, to get us up for it at the MCG."

Balbirnie, whose 62 helped lay the groundwork for Ireland's victory, hailed the result as "pretty special", particularly to achieve it on Melbourne's hallowed ground.

"It's amazing, and it is emotional," he said. "We've never played a game of cricket here. 

"To come here and play the tournament favourites, with so many big names, and put on a show in front of friends and family and so many people around the world is very satisfying.

"To do this at one of the most amazing cricket grounds in the world is pretty special."

Aaron Finch was left with mixed emotions after Australia beat Sri Lanka in the Cricket World Cup but he "couldn't hit the ball" in a "poor" innings.

Australia started the defence of their title by suffering an 89-run defeat to New Zealand in a repeat of last year's final, but the hosts responded with a seven-wicket victory at Perth Stadium on Tuesday.

Marcus Stoinis was the star of the show, blasting a record-breaking unbeaten 59 from only 18 balls to get the holders home with 21 balls to spare and move them into fourth place in Group 1.

The powerful all-rounder cleared the rope six times and struck another four boundaries to register Australia's fastest T20I half-century and the joint-second quickest in a T20 World Cup, passing 50 from only 17 deliveries.

Finch finished on 31 not out from 42 balls after watching Stoinis cut loose at the other end, and the captain gave a frank assessment of his scratchy knock.

He said in the post-match presentation: "I'm very happy [with the win]. Obviously my innings was unusual. It was poor. I just couldn't hit the ball. But I thought the way that we approached it with the bat was fine.

"It would've been nice if I could've kicked on earlier and made the chase a bit easier but all in all, pretty clinical, I think with the ball as well.

"They bowled a hard length. It was tough. It's such a big ground that you feel as though it's hard to just stand and deliver. Especially with a bit of extra bounce and when the ball is seaming slightly, you feel it's just not quite as easy to hit the middle of the bat. That's no excuse for the way I played, but it's nice to get two points."

The opener praised Stoinis following his sensational exhibition of clean striking.

"It was a pretty special innings," skipper Finch said. "To come out with that intent is the main thing. When you walk out to bat and you have that presence at the crease, that's half the battle in T20 cricket. When you have the skill and the strength that he's got, that's a pretty good combo."

Australia's next assignment will a mouthwatering clash with England at the MCG on Friday.

Marcus Stoinis hit a half-century in record time to propel Australia to a seven-wicket victory over Sri Lanka on Tuesday and get his side back on track in the T20 World Cup.

The tournament hosts were heavily beaten by New Zealand in their opener and were then set a competitive target by Sri Lanka, who reached 157-6 from their 20 overs.

Pathum Nissanka (40) top-scored for Sri Lanka, albeit using 45 balls, and Charith Asalanka (38) also contributed in an up-and-down innings that saw the Lions hit just two sixes.

Australia still had work to do with the pressure on, and they struggled early on, with David Warner (11) and Mitchell Marsh (17) falling to leave their side 60-2 in the ninth over.

However, Stoinis turned on the style by reaching his half-century in just 17 deliveries – the fastest fifty by an Australian in T20I history – en route to an unbeaten 59 from 18 balls.

Australia reached their target with 21 balls to spare in Perth for what turned out to be a run-rate-boosting win, despite Aaron Finch (31 from 42) failing to impress.

Australia back on track

This victory was Australia's third in a row against Sri Lanka at the T20 World Cup and sets up an intriguing contest against England at the MCG on Friday.

Sri Lanka had won eight of their past nine T20Is, including their Group 1 opener against Ireland, and must now dust themselves down ahead of facing New Zealand.

Stoinis stars as Finch falters

Finch scored no fours and only one six, though it did not matter thanks to the brilliant batting of Stoinis, who by comparison hit four fours and six sixes.

Stoinis overtook team-mate Warner's 18 off 50 against West Indies in 2010 as the fastest Australian to reach his half-century in the format, while only Yuvraj Singh (12 balls against England in 2007) has done so faster in the T20 World Cup.

Jamaica’s Reggae Girlz now know their opponents in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand after the draw on Saturday in New Zealand.

The Girlz have been drawn in Group F alongside powerhouses Brazil, France and either Taiwan, Panama, Paraguay or Papua New Guinea.

Brazil has been to nine World Cups with their best result being runners-up in 2007 while the French have been to five, most notably finishing fourth in 2011.

Jamaica will open their campaign against France on July 25 in Sydney before facing Chinese Taipei/Panama/Paraguay/Papua New Guinea on July 29 in Perth then battling Brazil on August 2 in Melbourne.

“Excitement,” was Reggae Girlz head coach Lorne Donaldson’s reaction when asked about the draw.

“It was a long day of anticipating. The draw itself was a draw with some exciting teams that play good football so we have to come out and try to match them.”

Jamaica was also drawn against Brazil in the 2019 World Cup, suffering a 0-3 loss in Grenoble.

“This is a totally different Brazil side. It’s a younger team with a different coach. Obviously, we have our work cut out against a fast, skillful Brazilian team so we have to be ready.”

Aaron Finch will not rush to any rash decisions following Australia's humbling 89-run defeat to New Zealand in their T20 World Cup opener on Saturday.

Australia were looking to make a positive start to their title defence at the SCG but found themselves on the end of an embarrassing loss.

It was a measure of revenge for the Black Caps, who lost to Australia in last year's final, with Devon Conway playing a vital role as his 92 not out off 58 helped New Zealand to a total of 200-3.

The swift dismissals of David Warner, Finch himself and Mitchell Marsh left Australia's chase doomed at 34-3 by the fifth over – Tim Southee eliminated two of them as he finished with remarkable figures of 3-6.

Australia were eventually bowled out for just 111, but captain Finch did not feel it was necessary to lay into his team, convinced they have a group of players and structure to retain their title.

"We still feel as though we've got the right structure of team, and we've got the right players to win the World Cup," he said.

"Obviously, it's taken a big hit today with the net run rate, and when that happens, you need to play well, and we need to we need to get better, quickly.

"And then, like I said, you need a bit of luck in T20 cricket as well, in such a brutal tournament.

"So, I think we've still got the right structure of the team. There's no doubt about that.

"Whether you go with an extra spinner, an extra quick, something like that, I think that's the only real decision to be made.

"Well, I'm still confident in the 15 that we've got, no doubt."

Finch will hope for a response against Sri Lanka at Perth Stadium on Tuesday.

Devon Conway's majestic 92 not out and a superb raft of bowling performances helped New Zealand inflict a shock rout upon Australia with an 89-run win in their T20 World Cup opener in Sydney.

Trent Boult, Mitchell Santner and Tim Southee returned terrific figures in a superb performance to leave the hosts stunned in the first match of the Super 12 stage at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

For the Black Caps, it was a performance to emphatically banish the ghosts of last year's final in the United Arab Emirates, where they buckled against a destructive Baggy Green performance led by Mitchell Marsh.

Here, they clocked a near-perfect start, with opener Finn Allen lashing a destructive 42 off 16 balls before Conway took command following the former's dismissal by Josh Hazlewood through the off-stump.

The wicket-keeper's shrewd knock pushed them to 200-3, setting Australia a difficult target to chase down - and swift dismissals for David Warner, Aaron Finch and Marsh, to reduce them to 34-3, effectively stymied their response.

From there, New Zealand effectively mopped up, working their way through the tail - and when Pat Cummins skied Southee at the start of the 18th over, an easy catch ensured a 111 all out demolition to get their tournament off to a flyer.

Conway throws down marker to rivals

The pyrotechnic performance of Allen came to an end with a choice ball from Hazlewood, the best of the Australia bowlers, but it was Conway's steady presence that built the bedrock.

Left-hander Conway carried the bat through a sumptuous 58-ball innings that included seven fours and two sixes. It is his third half-century in his last five T20I matches - few players are in finer form.

Hosts humbled in poor start

Having downed the Black Caps to crown themselves champions a year ago, this was a performance without bark and bite from Australia.

It is early doors in this competition, but in a group that also contains an England side in rich form, it is a result that could have seismic ramifications for their title defence.

Cricket West Indies President Ricky Skerritt promised a “thorough post-mortem” after the West Indies elimination from the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia on Thursday.

The team entered their final game in the qualifying round needing a win against Ireland to advance to the super 12s but were handily beaten by nine-wickets.

“I am deeply disappointed with the performance results of our team in Australia and I appreciate the sense of utter frustration that is being experienced by many,” Skerritt said in a statement on Friday.

The team, once again, showed an inability to play spin bowling, with Ireland’s spin duo of Gareth Delany and Simi Singh combining to bowl six overs for just 27 runs, grabbing four wickets in the process.

“The ongoing inability of our batsmen to prevail over opposing slow bowling continued to be an obvious weakness in Australia, and untimely shoe selection seems to be deeply embedded in the batting culture of our senior team,” Skerritt said.

The statement continues: “However, I want to ensure stakeholders that a thorough post-mortem will be carried out on all aspects of our World Cup preparation and performance, and that solutions will be found in keeping with CWI’s strategy to improve the quality and sustainability of cricket on all fronts, and in all formats. West Indies cricket is bigger than any one individual or event, and continues to need the input and support of all stakeholders.”

Cameron Green has been called up to replace the injured Josh Inglis in Australia's T20 World Cup squad.

Inglis was ruled out of the tournament on home soil after suffering a freak injury on the golf course on Wednesday.

The wicketkeeper-batter required stitches in his right hand after the handle of his six-iron club snapped on impact during a round at the New South Wales Golf Club.

All-rounder Green was drafted into the squad two days before the holders start the defence of their title against New Zealand at the SCG.

The selection of Green leaves the hosts without a back-up keeper for Matthew Wade.

Australia head coach Andrew McDonald said: "If you look back over World Cup selections there's been plenty of times where Australia have gone in with only one frontline keeper in the squad.

"That's just to give greater flexibility to batting and bowling structures within the team. It's a conversation about how we want to give ourselves the most amount of options as opposed to covering the small risk that is there."

Australia T20 World Cup squad: Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Tim David, Aaron Finch (captain), Josh Hazlewood, Cameron Green, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa.

West Indies Women captain Hayley Matthews’ top-score of 35 was not enough to prevent the Melbourne Renegades from a 21-run defeat against the Brisbane Heat in the Women’s Big Bash League in Mackay, Australia on Monday.

The Renegades won the toss and elected to field first, a decision that proved costly as the Heat’s Australian opening pair of Grace Harris and Georgia Redmayne put on a mammoth 165 for the first wicket.

Harris scored a 50-ball 65 including six fours and a six while Redmayne remained unbeaten on 98 from 67 balls including 12 fours. Laura Harris was not out on eight alongside Redmayne as the Heat eventually posted 180-1 from their 20 overs. Matthews was expensive, conceding 40 runs from her four overs without picking up a wicket.

In their reply, the Renegades batted decently but fell short of their target in the end, finishing 159-6 from their 20 overs. Matthews was good at the top of the innings with a quick 19-ball 35 including six fours while Carly Leeson ended not out on 34 against New Zealand leg-spinner Amelia Kerr’s 2-27 from four overs.

Matthews’ Renegades are currently fifth in the eight-team table with two points from as many games.

“There’s no doubt that we have what it takes” was the message from West Indies all-rounder Jason Holder ahead of his team’s must-win game against Zimbabwe at the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia on Wednesday.

The Windies are in a must-win situation after suffering an embarrassing 42-run defeat at the hands of Scotland on Sunday, leaving them at the foot of Group B needing wins in their last two games to move on to the Super 12s.

“Obviously, we had a tough start yesterday,” said the former West Indies Test and ODI skipper in a pre-match press conference on Monday.

“We’re all disappointed with the performance we had but I think the most important thing we have to do now is to come together and try to find solutions. There’s no doubt that we have what it takes to turn it around and it’s all about hitting the ground running against Zimbabwe,” he added.

The Zimbabweans will enter the game on a high after getting a comprehensive 31-run win over Ireland in their first game, also on Sunday.

“They’re a very good cricket team. We’ve played against them quite a bit in the recent past and they’ve been more and more competitive. They’re on a bit of a win streak as well so we’re expecting a highly competitive game; one of the hardest games we’ll have in the competition.”

The first game saw the Caribbean team struggle with the bat, being bowled out for 118 in just 18.3 overs in pursuit 161.

Better situational awareness and the forming of partnerships were Holder's answers when asked about possible solutions for the team's batting struggles.

 “We’ve got to be a little more situationally aware and try to build partnerships. Partnerships are key in any cricket game.”

“The situation of the game will determine how we play. If that requires that we go for boundaries then we’ll go for boundaries but if it requires that we have to knock it around for a bit, we’ll make that adjustment.”

The game is scheduled to start at 3:00 am Jamaica Time (4:00 am ECT).

 

 

 

 

Australia have made Pat Cummins their 27th one-day international captain.

Cummins already captains the nation's Test side and will now double up on leadership duties after replacing Aaron Finch as ODI skipper.

Finch retired from the format last month and fast bowler Cummins acknowledged he would be a tough act to follow.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed playing under Finchy and have learnt an enormous amount from his leadership," Cummins said.

"They are significant shoes to fill, although we are extremely fortunate to have a one-day squad with a huge amount of experience."

There had been reports that David Warner could see his lifetime leadership ban ended and he would assume the role, but this announcement puts an end to that speculation.

A proposed amendment to Cricket Australia's integrity code would have paved the way for Warner to take on the job, four years on from his involvement in a ball-tampering scandal.

However, it will be Cummins who leads the side when Australia take on England in a three-match series in November.

Mohammed Shami made a sensational return to the India set up as his blistering final over helped secure a six-run win over Australia in a pulsating T20 World Cup warm-up fixture.

Shami replaced the injured Jasprit Bumrah for the tournament Down Under and four wickets fell from the final four deliveries with defending champions Australia requiring 11 to win.

That was Shami's only over of the game at the Brisbane Cricket Ground, a match where Aaron Finch (76) found form but only three other Australia batsmen made double figures as they were bowled for 180 – losing six wickets for just nine runs from the final two overs.

Earlier, KL Rahul (57 off 33) and Suryakumar Yadav (50 off 33) had guided India to 186-7, a total that had looked under-par until Shami's heroics.

Shami steals the show

Shami was overlooked by India originally in favour of rising stars Arshdeep Singh and Harshal Patel but Bumrah's misfortune provided him an opportunity, and boy did he take it in a brilliant final over that had started with Pat Cummins taking a couple of twos, before the Australia paceman came unstuck by a scarcely believable one-handed catch by Virat Kohli on the boundary.

More great work by Kohli saw Ashton Agar run out when trying to sneak a bye, which preceded a couple of stunning Yorkers, uprooting the wickets of Josh Inglis and Kane Richardson, who had been the pick of Australia's bowlers with figures of 4-30.

Finch finds his wings again

Australia may have lost the unlosable but a massive takeaway for the hosts was captain Finch finding form on the eve of the World Cup.

Finch had managed only one half-century in his past 10 T20I knocks, and amassed just 25 runs across three innings in the series loss to England. The Australia skipper not only scored runs against India, but did so with a strike rate of 140.74.

 

Michael Hooper is back in the Australia squad for the upcoming tour of Europe, but James Slipper will retain the captaincy.

Hooper has not played since he withdrew from the Wallabies squad on the eve of their Rugby Championship opener against Argentina in August.

The flanker stated that he was not in the right frame of mind to play, but is set to make his comeback on the international stage after being included in a 36-man squad on Sunday.

Slipper will continue to skipper Australia, while the uncapped Jock Campbell, Ben Donaldson, Langi Gleeson, Mark Nawaqanitawase, Sam Talakai have been included.

Overseas-based duo Bernard Foley and Will Skelton were also selected for a tour that starts with a Test against Scotland at Murrayfield on October 30.

The Wallabies, who finished third in the Rugby Championship, will also face France, Italy, Ireland and Wales next month.

Australia head coach Dave Rennie said: "We've got a massive opportunity over the next five matches to test ourselves against some of the best teams in the world and string together some performances that our supporters are proud of back home in Australia.

"It's been really pleasing to continue to get game time into our players through the Australia A programme and a number of those guys have been rewarded for their form with selection in the squad.

"To have Michael back in the group is massive for our team on and off the field and we'll continue to make sure that he has the support around him he needs."

Australia squad:

Allan Alaalatoa, Tom Banks, Jock Campbell, Ben Donaldson, Folau Fainga'a, Lalakai Foketi, Bernard Foley, Matt Gibbon, Nick Frost, Langi Gleeson, Jake Gordon, Ned Hanigan, Reece Hodge, Jed Holloway, Michael Hooper, Len Ikitau, Andrew Kellaway, Noah Lolesio, Lachlan Lonergan, Tate McDermott, Fraser McReight, Mark Nawaqanitawase, Cadeyrn Neville, Hunter Paisami, Jordan Petaia, Matt Philip, David Porecki, Tom Robertson, Pete Samu, Will Skelton, James Slipper (captain), Sam Talakai, Taniela Tupou, Rob Valetini, Nic White, Tom Wright.

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