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IPL 2024: Confident DC aim for another win against inconsistent MI (preview)

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New Delhi, April 26 (IANS) Having suffered two defeats in their last three matches, an inconsistent Mumbai Indians have their task cut out if they are to make the Play-offs of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 when they face a confident Delhi Capitals in an afternoon game at Arun Jaitley Stadium on Saturday.

The last time these two teams met in the tournament, Mumbai made a massive 234/5 at the Wankhede Stadium on April 7 and managed to restrict Delhi to 205/8 for securing a 29-run win, their first of the competition.

But Mumbai come into Saturday’s game on the back of suffering a nine-wicket defeat to Rajasthan Royals in Jaipur and find themselves at the eighth place. A win against Delhi will set the base for their late revival in the competition, something which is now their hallmark. On the other hand, Delhi will be playing their third straight game at their real home ground, where another run-fest would be in the offering at a stadium with short square boundaries.

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The sixth-placed Delhi have a lot of confidence after surviving a late scare from Rashid Khan and David Miller to beat Gujarat Titans by four runs on Wednesday. Another win at home will keep them in contention in an intense race to enter the playoffs.

Their batting charge has been led by captain Rishabh Pant, who is making big strides with every passing game about finding his vintage best with bat and gloves, as seen from his magnificent 88 not out against Gujarat on Wednesday. DC were also helped by Axar Patel’s promotion to No.3, paying off as he made his highest IPL score of 66, apart from him and Kuldeep Yadav being economical with the ball.

Jake Fraser-McGurk and Tristan Stubbs have shone with the bat, while Prithvi Shaw and Shai Hope, coming in place of David Warner in the last game, are due to step up to give DC more batting depth. Pant will also be hoping that the fast bowlers, who have been inconsistent so far, will click to complement the spinners well to contain Mumbai’s batting line-up, which hasn’t fired in unison.

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Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav and Tilak Varma have hit big knocks, but they haven’t been consistent. The likes of Tim David, Ishan Kishan and captain Hardik Pandya need to chip in and support the trio with the bat if they are to get a big total. In the bowling department, Jasprit Bumrah has undoubtedly been Mumbai’s standout bowler. Bumrah is also leading the wicket-taking charts with 13 wickets at an economy rate of 6.37, with his death overs economy rate being at just 7.20, showcasing his effectiveness in a phase where batters go for big hits.

Barring Gerald Coetzee, who has 12 wickets in eight games, Mumbai’s other bowlers haven’t done anything of note. The visitors would be hoping the bowling unit gets its act together and makes merry under Delhi’s scorching heat as every game matters a lot for both teams in the race to the playoffs.

Squads:

Delhi Capitals: Rishabh Pant (c), Prithvi Shaw, David Warner, Kuldeep Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed, Axar Patel, Mukesh Kumar, Mitchell Marsh, Anrich Nortje, Pravin Dubey, Vicky Ostwal, Abishek Porel, Jake Fraser-McGurk, Lalit Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Yash Dhull, Tristan Stubbs, Ricky Bhui, Kumar Kushagra, Rasikh Dar, Jhye Richardson, Sumit Kumar, Shai Hope, Lizaad Williams, Swastik Chhikara and Gulbadin Naib.

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Mumbai Indians: Hardik Pandya (c), Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, Tilak Varma, Tim David, Akash Madhwal, Romario Shepherd, Gerald Coetzee, Shreyas Gopal, Mohammad Nabi, Nehal Wadhera, Dewald Brevis, Kwena Maphaka Harvik Desai, Arjun Tendulkar, Shams Mulani, Kumar Kartikeya, Piyush Chawla, Luke Wood, Nuwan Thushara, Naman Dhir, Anshul Kamboj and Shivalik Sharma.

Match starts at 3:30 pm on Star Sports (TV) and JioCinema (mobile).

–IANS

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T20 World Cup: South Africa's Miller reprimanded for showing dissent at umpire's decision

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St Lucia, June 23 (IANS) South Africa player David Miller has been handed an official reprimand for showing dissent towards an umpire’s decision during a Super Eight stage Group 2 match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 against England at the Daren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in St Lucia on Friday.

Miller was pulled up for breaching Level 1 of the ICC Code of Conduct after the match officials made a complaint with the match referee. Miller was found to have breached Article 2.8 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which relates to “showing dissent at an Umpire’s decision during an International Match.”

In addition to this, one demerit point has been added to Miller’s disciplinary record, for whom it was the first offence in 24 months, the ICC informed in a release on Saturday.

The incident occurred in the 19th over of South Africa’s innings. Miller played a full toss from Sam Curran and expected it to be called a ‘no ball’ for height. When it was not declared a ‘no ball’, he showed dissent at the umpire’s decision by signaling to review the decision when it could not have been reviewed.

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Miller admitted the offence and accepted the sanction proposed by Jeff Crowe of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees, so there was no need for a formal hearing.

On-field umpires Chris Brown and Sharfuddoula Ibne Shahid, third umpire Joel Wilson and fourth umpire Chris Gaffaney levelled the charge.

Level 1 breaches carry a minimum penalty of an official reprimand, a maximum penalty of 50 percent of a player’s match fee, and one or two demerit points.

–IANS

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Euro 2024: Portugal seal spot in knockouts with a match to spare

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Dortmund, June 23 (IANS) Bernardo Silva and Bruno Fernandes were on target as Portugal sealed their place in the knockout stages of the UEFA Euro 2024 with a match to spare at the BVB Stadion Dortmund on Saturday. Silva and Fernandes scored a goal each while Samet Akaydin contributed an own goal as former winner Portugal defeated Turkiye 3-0 in a key match in Dortmund that wrapped up the top spot in Group F.

Portugal did it the hard way against the Czech Republic on Matchday 1, but on Saturday, they quickly took a firm grip on the proceedings. With Vitinha pulling the strings, they set about dictating the tempo and on 21 minutes they were ahead when Nuno Mendes’ deflected cut-back was coolly dispatched by Bernardo Silva.

One soon became two, in the most unfortunate manner from a Turkiye point of view. Joao Palhinha’s attempted through ball sounded few alarm bells but, with goalkeeper Altay Bayındır advancing unsighted, Samet Akaydin’s back pass activated the warning klaxon -– too late, despite a desperate scramble.

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Altay Bayındır, one of four Turkiye changes from the Georgia win, picked the ball out of his net 11 minutes into the second half as Cristiano Ronaldo sprung the offside trap and unselfishly squared for Bruno Fernandes. The Crescent-Stars battled on, but the game was up.

So Turkiye followed up their first opening day win at a Euro with a defeat that equals their heaviest in the competition. A point on Wednesday against the Czech Republic will nonetheless advance to the knockout stages alongside Portugal, the win preserving their 100% record at getting out of groups.

–IANS

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T20 World Cup: Hardik, Kuldeep star as India thrash Bangladesh by 50 runs, inch closer to semis (ld)

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North Sound (Antigua), June 22 (IANS) Vice-captain Hardik Pandya top-scored with an unbeaten 27-ball fifty and took 1-32 in a top all-round performance, while wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav bowled a stellar spell of 3-19 as India thrashed Bangladesh by 50 runs to claim their second Super Eight stage win in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium on Saturday.

On a fresh pitch, Pandya smashed four boundaries and three sixes in his undefeated knock, which was key in India amassing 62 runs off the last five overs. Coupled with attacking 30s from Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant and Shivam Dube, India posted a commanding 196/5 in their 20 overs, their highest total in the competition.

In reply, Kuldeep bowled a wonderful spell, helped by bounce and a bit of grip to leave Bangladesh in disarray. The rest of the bowlers produced another outstanding show, and the fielders backed them up very well to restrict Bangladesh to 146/8 and inch closer to the semifinals. India will confirm their semifinal spot if Afghanistan fail to beat Australia at St Vincent.

India dominated from the word go with immaculate ease, as every batter looked to attack, resulting in four batters having strike-rate above 150. It resulted in them posting the highest T20I score at the venue and also hitting 13 sixes -– the most number of maximums they have hit in a T20 World Cup game.

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Pushed into batting first, with cross wind blowing, Rohit Sharma didn’t let the spinners settle by sweeping Mahedi Hasan for four, followed by repeating the same shot against Shakib Al Hasan for a similar result.

Kohli joined in taking the attack to the spinners by smacking Shakib for a clean six over long-on, followed by using his bottom hand strongly in flicking Tanzim Hasan Sakib for four.

Rohit danced down the pitch to hit Shakib for a big six, before slicing him past backward point for four more in the fourth over. Shakib eventually had the last laugh as Rohit got a top-edge on slog and was caught by a backward point to fall for a rapid 23.

Kohli used his bottom hand well in swinging Mustafizur Rahman for six, followed by slamming leg-spinner Rishad Hossain down the ground for another maximum. But in the ninth over, Tanzim’s clever change in pace got Bangladesh back in the game –- getting a slower off-cutter which kept straight to castle Kohli for 37.

Though Suryakumar Yadav swiped him for a six, Tanzim got extra bounce on a length delivery outside off-stump to take Suryakumar’s glove edge behind to keeper. Pant, who was at 12 off 15 balls, greeted Rahman with a drive through the gap between cover and mid-off for four.

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He was quick to heave a slower ball from him high over mid-wicket for six and flicked a full toss in the gap between square leg and fine leg for four more to take 14 runs off the 11th over. Hossain was next in the firing line, as Pant smashed him with the spin over long-on for six and then swept him behind for four more. But Hossain bounced back as Pant reverse-swept straight to short third man, falling for 36.

Pandya and Dube dealt in singles before the former cut loose by hammering Mahedi with the wind through extra cover for six and four respectively. Dube hammered three quick sixes before being castled by a slower googly from Hossain for 34. Pandya continued to be at his free-flowing best – slamming two sixes, before hitting three fours in the final over off Rahman to take India past 190 and get his fifty on the last ball of the innings.

Chasing 197 was always going to be an uphill task for a middling Bangladesh batting line-up. Despite the stiff target, Tanzid Hasan began strongly by hitting four boundaries, followed by Litton Das smashing two boundaries. Pandya got the breakthrough when Das couldn’t control his pull on a wide delivery and was caught at deep mid-wicket.

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Tanzid was dropped on 24 by Pant off Bumrah but was trapped lbw on the back leg by a stunning googly from Kuldeep. Towhid Hridoy was next to fall as Kuldeep got a leg-break delivery to turn in slightly and go past an attempted slog-sweep to trap him plumb lbw.

More success followed India as Kuldeep had Shakib mistime a loft to cover, followed by Bumrah deceiving Najmul Hossain Shanto with an off-cutter which he sliced to a short third man, and Arshdeep bowling a similar delivery to take out Jaker Ali.

Hossain impressed with his hitting abilities by smashing a four and three sixes, before giving a top edge on pull to extra cover off Bumrah, who finished with an economy rate of just 3.2 in another comprehensive win for India and maintained their unbeaten run in the competition.

Brief scores:

India 196/5 in 20 overs (Hardik Pandya 50 not out, Virat Kohli 37; Tanzim Hasan Sakib 2-32, Rishad Hossain 2-43) beat Bangladesh 146/8 in 20 overs (Najmul Hossain Shanto 40, Tanzid Hasan 29; Kuldeep Yadav 3-19, Jasprit Bumrah 2-13) by 50 runs.

–IANS

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T20 World Cup: Kuldeep picks 3-19 as India thrash Bangladesh by 50 runs, inch closer to semi-finals

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North Sound (Antigua), June 22 (IANS) Left-arm wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav shined with a game-changing spell of 3-19, while fast-bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Arshdeep Singh picked two wickets each as India thrashed Bangladesh by 50 runs to claim their second Super Eight stage win in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium here on Saturday.

After vice-captain Hardik Pandya top-scored with an unbeaten 27-ball fifty and smashed four boundaries and three sixes in India making 196/5, their highest total in the competition, Kuldeep bowled a wonderful spell on a pitch having bounce and a bit of grip to leave Bangladesh in disarray.

The rest of the bowlers produced another outstanding show, and the fielders backed them up very well to restrict Bangladesh to 146/8 and inch closer to the semi-finals. India will confirm their semifinal spot if Afghanistan fail to beat Australia at St Vincent. Chasing 197 was always going to be an uphill task for a middling Bangladesh batting line-up.

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Despite the stiff target, Tanzid Hasan began strongly by hitting four boundaries, followed by Litton Das smashing two boundaries. Pandya got the breakthrough for India when Litton couldn’t control a pull shot on a wide outside off delivery and was caught at deep mid-wicket.

Tanzid was dropped on 24 by Rishabh Pant off Bumrah but was trapped lbw on the back leg by a stunning googly from Kuldeep. Towhid Hridoy was next to fall as Kuldeep got a leg-break delivery to turn in slightly and go past the attempted slog-sweep to trap him plumb lbw.

Though Najmul Hassan Shanto and Shakib Al Hasan hit some boundaries, Kuldeep took out the latter by forcing him to mistime a loft to cover. More success followed India as Bumrah deceived Shanto with an off-cutter sliced to short third man, followed by Arshdeep bowling a similar delivery to take out Jaker Ali.

Rishad Hossain impressed onlookers with his hitting abilities by smashing a four and three sixes, before giving a top edge on pull to extra cover off Bumrah, who finished with an economy rate of just 3.2 in another comprehensive win for India.

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Brief scores:

India 196/5 in 20 overs (Hardik Pandya 50 not out, Virat Kohli 37; Tanzim Hasan Sakib 2-32, Rishad Hossain 2-43) beat Bangladesh 146/8 in 20 overs (Najmul Hossain Shanto 40, Tanzid Hasan 29; Kuldeep Yadav 3-19, Jasprit Bumrah 2-13) by 50 runs

–IANS

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T20 World Cup: Keshav Maharaj credits 'small moments' behind unbeaten campaign

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Gros Islet (St Lucia), June 22 (IANS) South Africa spinner Keshav Maharaj feels that the team has found ways to win “small moments” in the game that has helped them to stay unbeaten in the T20 World Cup so far. South Africa are cruising in the showpiece tournament with a six-match winning streak. Proteas have kept calm during the crunch situations and prevailed over their opponents in four close matches including the one-run win over Nepal in the group stage.

“If you look at previous World Cups, the small moments, we haven’t really won. It’s good to see that all the games have come really close and we’ve found a way, so it’s building the character within the team. And it prepares us for certain opportunities that we could get and cross over the line in those small moments, [these] are things that we’ve never done before. So, it’s good to see us getting into that,” Maharaj said.

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The left-arm spinner went on to say that South Africa have made every effort to get past the “hurt” caused by the 2023 ODI World Cup semi-final exit in India.

“This team believes that we can be really great as a unit. Obviously, with the last World Cup, bowing out in the semi-finals, it’s both the character and there’s a lot of hurt. So, we just take it one game at a time and focus on trying to get the results to go our way and not looking at the negatives, just trying to highlight the positives as much as possible,” Maharaj said.

South Africa’s next match against West Indies in Antigua on Sunday will feature a showdown between the teams’ left-arm spinners. South Africa boasts Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi while West Indies relies on Akeal Hosein and Gudakesh Motie, who have been their standout bowlers in the tournament with Hosein claiming nine wickets and Motie eight in six matches.

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Maharaj acknowledged the spin battle, stating, “It’s always a battle of the spinners. I’m just going about my business. They’ve bowled exceptionally well in the tournament. I’ve watched quite a few spells of them, so obviously they’re quite a dominant force as well. They [West Indies] have got a very strong batting line-up, but [I will] just try to stick true to my processes and my principles.”

“It’s more a case of focusing on each and every game, not getting too ahead of ourselves. We’ve been very focused on our processes and trying to win each and every game and letting the rest take care of itself,” he added.

–IANS

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