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  1. Ever since winning the competition in 1992, the Pakistani cricket team has found themselves chasing the elusive ICC World Cup trophy. Despite boasting some of the best bowlers and capable batsmen in their side, Pakistan has struggled to live up to the billing. But, the last few years surely gave their fans some hope which in turn allowed them to dream on in big tournaments. Their astounding triumph over arch-rivals India in the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy surely promised of big and better things in the future. Thus, when they geared up to compete in the 2019 edition of the World Cup, despite not being tipped as one of the title contenders, Pakistan's unpredictable nature would've had the rival sides on their toes. A shambolic seven-wicket loss against equally unpredictable West Indies did get their fans worried for a moment. But, their superlative effort that allowed them to stun hosts England in their second game would have lifted the mood in their camp. Following a spectacular comeback, Pakistan were left frustrated after their third match against Sri Lanka was abandoned due to rain. © Reuters It was surely quite unfortunate for Pakistan who would have fancied two crucial points against a weak opposition like Sri Lanka, especially after gaining some much-needed momentum in the tournament. “As a team we really wanted to play this match, especially after gaining momentum with the win against England. It is unfortunate that we were not able to play," skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed said after sharing points with the Lankans. But, the Pakistan captain didn't stop there. Delivering a stern, yet needless, warning to other teams in the tournament, Sarfaraz said: “Our next match is against Australia. Every team is scared about Pakistan. Like other teams in the tournament they are also a tough opponent and they also have momentum as they have won their first two matches". His comments, at that time, made him butt of all jokes on the social media as cricket fans from across the globe slammed him for his baseless threat. Unfortunately for Sarfaraz, his boisterous claim came back to haunt him following his team's 41-run defeat against Australia in their fourth match at Taunton. © Reuters For a team that was labelled as 'scary for other sides' by its captain, Pakistan looked far from the champion brigade that hammered England earlier in the tournament. In what turned out to be a comedy of errors, Pakistan squandered their lead, having won the toss, as their pace attack produced one of their loosest performances in recent times. Barring Mohammad Amir, the likes of Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi and Wahab Riaz looked ordinary in conditions that were conducive to quicks. While Amir exerted pressure with his impeccable line and length at one end, the trio of Pakistani pacers allowed the Aussie batsmen to score freely, owing to their poor lengths, at the other. This Guy is the Mood of whole Awaam watching the teams fielding.... pic.twitter.com/RK9OTGQlXb — Taimoor Zaman (@taimoorze) June 12, 2019 If that wasn't enough, their poor fielding further cut a sorry figure. Asif Ali's butterfingers got him in the spotlight after he dropped two crucial catches in the field. The first chance came in the 13th over when he gave Aaron Finch a second life after dropping him in the slip cordon. The second one, an absolute sitter at the fence, gave a life to centurion David Warner whose upper-cut went straight into the hands of Ali, only to be put down. And then, there were misfields too, even from usually steady and safe Shoaib Malik. © Reuters Despite their frailties, Pakistani bowlers did fairly well to recover in the death overs to restrict Australia to 307 runs. Now the onus was on their batting unit to script a successful run-chase in a bid to make up for their shoddy effort in the first-half of the game. Following the soft dismissal of opener Fakhar Zaman early on, Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam stabilised their chase with a 54-run partnership. But, just when Pakistan began to get going, Azam's poor shot selection, derived in a response from Nathan Coulter-Nile's bouncer, gave the Aussies a vital breakthrough. It was the Aussies who had the last laugh though with Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Kane Richardson doing the bulk of the damage. Watch the wickets fall ð⤵#CmonAussie #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/SEAUsMzwUb — ICC (@ICC) June 12, 2019 After losing their best batsman, Pakistan began rebuilding again, this time, through a 80-run partnership between Imam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Hafeez. But, again, Pakistan found themselves on the backfoot as yet another set batsman lost his wicket in a soft dismissal. Out of all the bowlers, Hafeez handed his wicket part-timer Finch after hitting a full-toss straight down the throat of deep square leg. Pakistan have slipped from 136/2 to 160/6! Australia's game to lose? #AUSvPAK LIVE ð https://t.co/RyjNER1Rlx pic.twitter.com/qiuf7IDhBC — ICC (@ICC) June 12, 2019 At a time when they needed key partnership, Pakistan kept on losing wickets in a fashion unfathomable to their fans. Skipper Sarfaraz did find an unlikely support in Wahab Riaz in the later stages, but it just wasn't enough to get them over the line. Coming off a long rest, Pakistan were expected to put up a good show (if skipper Sarfaraz's boisterous claims are to be taken seriously). But, sadly, it wasn't the case. Reasons behind Pakistan's loss 1) 4 specialist bowlers only 2) Three dropped catches 3) Bowled too short in first half 4) Over reliance on senior batsmen Shadab as 5th bowler would have saved 20 runs or Haris as extra batsman would have scored 30-40 runs. #AusvPak — Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) June 12, 2019 To put things into perspective, Pakistan have now dropped eight catches in four matches so far in the tournament. Asif Ali's first dropped chance cost Pakistan 25 runs (as per ESPNcricinfo's Luck Index). On the other hand, their misfields cost them seven runs in the field. And, the fact that Pakistan ultimately lost by 41 runs, pretty much sums up their ordeal. In the end, we reckon, it's Pakistan who should be scared of the lacklustre brigade that turned up in their jersey against Australia than other teams as boasted by captain Sarfaraz earlier in the tournament. For what it's worth, Pakistan and their captain must walk the talk if they literally intend to scare the other teams in the tournament.
  2. It was not a good day at the office for the Australian Cricket team as they lost to India by 36 runs at The Oval in London in match 14 of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. A marvellously paced century from Shikhar Dhawan, a well-made 82 from skipper Virat Kohli and cameos from Hardik Pandya and MS Dhoni led to a superlative batting performance that was enough for Team India to grab a second consecutive victory at the World Cup. © Twitter-cricketworldcup It was, however, the Indian skipper's outstanding sportsmanship that grabbed headlines after the game. During the first innings, when Kohli was batting in the middle, he noticed a large section of fans showing dissent towards Australian batsman Steve Smith and took matters into his own hands as he can be seen gesturing to the crowd to applaud Smith instead of booing him. The gesture was appreciated by not only Smith and the rest of the Australian team, but also from fans of cricket across the world. With India fans giving Steve Smith a tough time fielding in the deep, @imVkohli suggested they applaud the Australian instead. Absolute class ð #SpiritOfCricket #ViratKohli pic.twitter.com/mmkLoedxjr — ICC (@ICC) June 9, 2019 After last year's ball-tampering scandal, Smith and fellow australian David Warner have established themselves as the villains of international cricket. Having served a 12-month ban handed to them by Cricket Australia, they still cannot seem to break that image of themselves as they return to International Cricket. Speaking at a press conference after the game , the Indian Skipper mentioned that despite the fact that him and Smith have had altercations on the field in the past, he does not appreciate seeing something like that on the cricketing field. “If I was in a position where something had happened with me, and I'd apologised and accepted it, and came back and still I would get booed, I wouldn't like it either.”#ViratKohli on why he asked the fans to stop booing Steve Smith. #CWC19 | #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/CIMicjoSA0 — Cricket World Cup (@cricketworldcup) June 9, 2019 Kohli said “even in the IPL I saw him (get booed by fans), it's not good to see someone down like that.” Urging fans to forget about Smith's mistake in the past he then went on to say that “just because there's a lot of Indian fans in the crowd, I don't want to see them set a bad example.” India are well on their way to make a mark in this year's World Cup as they look to extend their run of consecutive victories against New Zealand on 13th June at Trent Bridge. As the Indian Team continues to raise the bar in terms of top order batting, death bowling and fielding; the Indian captain is showing how they are raising the standard for sportsmanship as well. All things said and done, it was an incredible gesture which will not be forgotten by Smith or Australian cricket fans anytime soon.
  3. As the ICC World Cup 2019 approaches, the Justin Langer-coached Australian cricket team has had quite the journey. With the infamous 2018 ball-tampering scandal in South Africa leading to the suspension of two of their greatest assets in Steve Smith and David Warner, and then the struggling stint in Test cricket under the leadership of Tim Paine, the team with the most World Cup titles under their belt are surely the underdogs this year. Thanks to a couple of series between their ban being lifted and the upcoming tournament, and some added help with the twelfth season of the Indian Premier League, Warner and Smith have provided a small boost to the squad, but the Aussies' bowling lineup could become their Achilles heel, especially with Josh Hazlewood missing from the roster. © Reuters Starting out their World Cup campaign against Rashid Khan's Team Afghanistan at the Country Ground in Bristol on 1st June 2019, skipper Aaron Finch's strategy must include taking big wickers in a hurry. The loss of Jhye Richarson to injury along with the off-form of Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins with the bat, Team Australia cannot afford to let the opposition score big totals in the 50-over format of the game. Keeping in mind the bad performances put up by the fast bowlers in the 5-game ODI series between Pakistan and World Cup hosts, Team England, Jason Behrendorff and Nathan Coulter-Nile might not be the best bowlers for the five-time champions. Under such circumstances, Glenn Maxwell and Adam Zampa might be the key players for the team. Spinners with the ability to hit big shots, the duo might turn out to be crucial for a team short on firepower. Maxwell's strike rate during the previous World Cup was a scary 182 and went on to make a name for himself as one of the most terrifying batters from Down Under. © Reuters Finally, the chances of Langer's boys winning the championship look to be extremely slim. While players like Smith, Warner, Starc and Maxwell would have made for an All-Star team, they are being haunted by something or the other, be it bad form, serious injuries or simply the lack of will to win. Hopefully, under the guidance of Langer and a divergence from the 'win at all costs' mentality inside Cricket Australia, the mood inside the dressing room has brightened up a little, especially with the display of consistency by the team of lately. Squad: Aaron Finch(c), Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey(wk), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner and Adam Zampa.
  4. For a team that finished fourth under the leadership of a new captain last season, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), with Dinesh Karthik at the helm of affairs, have come into their own to establish themselves as serious contenders in the Indian Premier League (IPL) this season. The Shah Rukh Khan co-owned franchise has won four out of the six games they've played so far in the tournament. With just two defeats and eight points for their showing, KKR are currently placed at the second spot, right behind defending champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK), in the IPL points table. However, despite a series of clinical performances this season, Kolkata aren't taking any chances when it comes to fixing the chinks in their armour. In fact, in what appears to be a crucial addition to their squad, the Knights are set to introduce Matt Kelly as a replacement for their South African recruit Anrich Nortje who has been ruled out due to a shoulder injury. Welcome #MattKellyð Our pace armoury just got more fiery with this addition ð¥#ComeHome2KKR#KKRHaiTaiyaar#VIVOIPLpic.twitter.com/gY9PMV9Sag — KolkataKnightRiders (@KKRiders) April 11, 2019 While Matt Kelly isn't a name that would straightaway ring a bell, at least in India, his lack of popularity shouldn't overshadow the bowling might this Australian T20 specialist brings to the table. Born in South Africa before moving to Australia at the age of four, Kelly has already proved his credentials with Perth Scorchers in the Big Bash League. The uncapped Aussie has also played 16 First-Class matches, five List A games and 12 T20s so far in his budding career. But, what makes him a deadly addition to KKR is his ability to outwit the opposition batsmen in the death overs with cunning variations and a mean yorker. That's the length âhttps://t.co/GlqmcKF8Q5 — Brett Lee (@BrettLee_58) April 11, 2019 The 24-year-old's success with the ball has also impressed former Australian greats including Mark Waugh who had earlier described him as a "bolter" with the ability to consistently bowl yorkers at the end of the innings. Waugh further claimed that the youngster deserves to be in the mix for Australia's squad for the ICC World Cup in England and Wales. Dislodged from the top of the points table after a meek surrender to Chennai in their last game, KKR will hope young Kelly comes to the party when they lock horns with Delhi Capitals (DC) at the hallowed Eden Gardens on 12th April.
  5. Following the ODI series against the visiting Australian cricket team comes as a wake-up call for the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI). It gives a hint of how dire a situation they are in right now and what kind of competition they are looking at in the ICC World Cup 2019 come June. It was also a reminder of how badly do they still need Mahendra Singh Dhoni to be included in the final roster. Virat Kohli's Commander In Chief © Reuters Yes, Virat Kohli has proven his worth maybe a million times both as a batsman and a leader and his efforts were even recognised by the International Cricket Council (ICC) when they honoured the 30-year-old with three of the most prestigious awards in the game - Men's Cricketer of the Year, Test Cricketer of the Year and ODI Cricketer of the Year while also naming him the captain of the Test and ODI Teams of the Year. However, the man himself has agreed to the fact that he can afford the luxury of fielding at the boundary whenever Dhoni plays from his team. A big fan of the former skipper's ability to lead, Kohli trusts Dhoni's decision-making, especially in crunch time, when the match is on the line. Kohli's frustration and anger in the final overs of Indian bowling in the fifth ODI were enough to understand how gravely he missed having 'Mahi Bhai' by his side. Skills Behind The Stumps © Reuters Rishabh Pant may turn out to be a great substitute for MSD in due course of time and as his childhood coach Tarak Sinha very rightly said that it is unfair to compare a seasoned veteran like Dhoni to a fresher like Pant. Having said that, Pant will get a lot of chances to brush up his skills behind the wicket. For now, at least till the World Cup is over, India can't afford to have the kind of slip-ups the 21-year-old did in the last two ODIs. "Yeh aank band karke rokega. Dusra waala daal sakta hai isko." MS Dhoni from behind the stumps reads Boult, suggests Kuldeep to bowl a googly. Kuldeep obliges and Rohit takes a simple catch at first slip. NZ have been bowled out for 157. #CricketMeriJaan #NZvIND — Mumbai Indians (@mipaltan) January 23, 2019 India also missed how Dhoni reads the game and the batsman's mind and instructs the bowlers accordingly. Success of Indian spinners in the recent past has a lot to do with Dhoni's observations from behind the stumps. On the contrary, his absence from the roster has led to bowlers like Kuldeep Yadav and Kedar Jadhav being thrashed by the batsmen from Down Under. Dependable On The Crease © Reuters His capabilities as a batsman also needs to be taken into account. Albeit his consistency to score big runs and hit long shots has gone down drastically in recent days, but one can still bet on Dhoni's ability to stay on the crease. During the T20I and ODI series in New Zealand and the partnership between him and Jadhav, Dhoni made sure that his side doesn't lose any more wickets while enabling his partner to score big runs on strike. His Locker-Room Aura © Reuters Finally, just the mere presence of a personality like Dhoni in the locker room brings a sense of stability to the team. After the win in the first ODI, Jadhav openly advocated that notion: “Every time I see 'Mahi bhai', it instills confidence in me. That sort of aura is like, that you see him and feel that 'I will deliver today'. He has the knack of getting the best out of every player and that's what everybody loves about him.”
  6. Ahead of the second ODI between India and the visiting Australian cricket team, Indian all-rounder Kedar Jadhav has come up with some words of praise for former skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni as one of the most steady pillars of the squad. A self-proclaimed fan of the legend from Ranchi, Jadhav marvelled at his idol's brilliant innings against the dominating cricketers from Down Under during the first ODI match, as they built a formidable partnership of 141 runs while chasing a challenging total of 236 at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Hyderabad. MS Dhoni finishes it off in style. Kedar Jadhav (81*) and MS Dhoni (59*) hit half-centuries as #TeamIndia win by 6 wickets and take a 1-0 lead in the 5 match ODI series #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/HHA7FfEDjZ — BCCI (@BCCI) March 2, 2019 While Jadhav had an impressive 81-run innings, it was all because of Dhoni's ability to stick to the crease on the other side that gave him the confidence to go for the big hits. “I can't put it out in words. Every time I see Mahi bhai, it instills confidence in me. That sort of aura is like, that you see him and feel that 'I will deliver today'. He has the knack of getting the best out of every player and that's what everybody loves about him.” Jadhav has also come out and complemented Dhoni's ability to calm his teammates down before a big game or tough circumstances. Talking about his affection towards the wicketkeeper, Kedar recalled his debut series: “The kind of cricketer I am today is because of him. He has always encouraged me… He had seen me in Zimbabwe first and in the New Zealand series at home in 2016, he just wanted two overs from me and luckily for me in my second over, I got two wickets.” No doubt Dhoni has been one of the most successful captains of the Indian cricket team and a huge reason behind his excellence in that role, was his ability to mould himself according to the situation, a leader, a batsman, a wicketkeeper, a mind-reader, you name it, he's done it. Despite being flaked with hate-mails after his game in the T20I series loss against the Aussies, Dhoni has yet against proved his haters wrong.
  7. While we are still revelling in our win against Australia in the ODI matches, the Indian Cricket team is all ready to welcome Australia for a quick limited overs tour before the Indian Premier League kicks off next month. India will take on Australia in another T20I on February 27 followed by a five-match ODI series which will go on till March 13. And after their stupendous win earlier, we cannot wait to see these stars of the Indian Cricket team perform in tomorrow's match. 1. KL Rahul ICC Cricket A dynamic batsman, who has not been able to perform with the bat in the past few series, would be looking to re-establish his form in the shorter format of the game. With a strike rate nearing 150 in the year 2018, he'd definitely try to cement his position in the World Cup squad. 2. Rishab Pant ICC Cricket One of the emerging players in the T20 format, Pant will provide a lot of stability and firepower to the Indian team for the upcoming series. With his recent breathtaking performances in Australia with 350 runs at an average of 58.33 and a few cameos in New Zealand, he has been able to gain the trust of the selectors and is in strong contention as a second wicketkeeper for the World Cup. 3. Chickstar Taco Bell And since this weekend is all sorted for in terms of entertainment with these stars in count, why not talk about another star we cannot wait to try! Heard about Taco Bell's Chickstar wrap (for Rs 169) yet? The wrap is star-shaped and is generously filled with crispy chicken, creamy habanero, veggies, and nacho cheese sauce. Don't fret, vegetarians. For you, they have the Vegstar wrap for Rs 149 which is equally mouthwatering and scrumptious! The best part though? These wrap come with free unlimited Pepsi. So it seems like you have managed to sort out food and beverages like a total pro, and you are still left with extra funds! 4. Vijay Shankar ICC Cricket An all-rounder with a solid technique and calm temperament, Vijay Shankar is definitely going to provide stability to India's middle order. In New Zealand, during the fourth ODI, he showed his quality with the bat pulling Team India out of trouble. With his sharp batting skills and seam bowling ability, he could prove to be a trump card for Team India. 5. Mayank Markande ICC Cricket An exciting young leg-spinner who grabbed 15 wickets during last year's IPL for Mumbai Indians would be looking to leave selectors in a dilemma as he gets a chance to showcase his talent at the International level. After his impressive performance against England Lions and having best bowling figures of 4/23 in T20Is, he's the youngster to watch out for. 6. Ravindra Jadeja ICC Cricket Left-arm spin bowling all-rounder, Ravindra Jadeja would be looking to make the most of this call-up due to the absence of Hardik Pandya. Since the Asia Cup last year, Jadeja has clinched 16 wickets from 11 matches. With his ability to restrict the opposition in the middle overs and playing fast cameos with the bat he is another crucial all-rounder to watch out for. I don't know about you, but I am eagerly waiting to watch the match tomorrow. One, because let's beat Australia again. And two, let's have a Chikstar while we are at it. Peace out!
  8. The wee hours of 26th February witnessed the Indian Air Force (IAF) pulling off a brave operation that was carried out across the Line of Control (LoC) in Pakistan. A group of 12 Mirage 2000 aircrafts carried out swift air strikes to eliminate multiple terror camps and launch pads. The Indian fighter jets dropped bombs weighing 1,000 kgs in a 21-minute operation that resulted in the elimination of the biggest terror camp of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) in Balakot. India's retaliatory strike came in the wake of the dastardly suicide attack in Pulwama, that claimed the lives of more than 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel. Ever since the news of India's so-called 'surgical strike 2.0' surfaced, everyone has been saluting the IAF for successfully carrying out the brave operation. #India struck biggest training camp of Jaish-e-Mohammad in Balakot; a very large number of terrorists, trainers, senior commanders and fidayeenjihadis were eliminated: Sh Vijay Gokhale, Foreign Secretary pic.twitter.com/D8kk4gWfWI — PIB India (@PIB_India) February 26, 2019 While some hailed the Indian fighter pilots for avenging the Pulwama martyrs, others took immense pride in India's new approach of tackling fire by fire. Amid all the congratulatory messages, the sports fraternity wasn't far behind either. From Virender Sehwag to Saina Nehwal, the Indian sports fraternity was seen joining the chorus in lauding the IAF. IAF's pre-dawn strike across the border also evoked a response from Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, who will be seen leading his side against Australia in the 2nd T20I on 27th February. Taking to Facebook, Kohli shared a picture of himself alongside his teammates in what appears to be a training session. The Indian skipper captioned the image with the popular phrase: "How's the Josh?". The phrase comes from the Bollywood flick, 'Uri - The Surgical Strike' - a dramatised account of the Indian Army's retaliation to the 2016 Uri attack in the valley. Going by the mood in the country, it wasn't hard to guess what Kohli was trying to say with his social media post. But, it was great to see the Indian captain drawing inspiration from the IAF to motivate himself and his team going into the second and final T20I - a must-win game that'll help the hosts in levelling the series.
  9. Barring Sachin Tendulkar, no other cricketer evokes such extreme emotions and draws praise from fans like Mahendra Singh Dhoni. One of the most popular and definitely most criticised Indian cricketer, Dhoni garners attention for all the good and bad he produces on the field. If his lightening quick glovework elates fans, the very man's misfiring innings leaves everyone disappointed. The recent times have been no different for the former Indian captain. Before he headed to Australia for the ODI series, everyone contemplated that it might be the end of Dhoni who would find it really hard to make the cut for the Indian squad for the 2019 ICC World Cup in England & Wales. Reuters But, on the back of three consecutive fifties in three matches, Dhoni earned the 'Player of the Series' award and silenced everyone who doubted his credentials. Thriving in his new role, Dhoni has once again proved why Team India needs him in their upcoming World Cup campaign. And, owing to his new role, Dhoni seems to have decided to change don a new look as Australia come calling for two T20Is and five ODIs. Using the expertise of her friend and celebrity hairstylist Sapna Moti Bhavnani, Dhoni dyed his hair black and got a sleek and classy look. Maintaining a medium length in the middle, 'Captain Cool' opted for relatively shorter hair on the sides. . Hello #captainsaab â¤ï¸ #newlook Hair/Makeup by me . . “Kaunse pagal ne kabhi kaha hai ke main pagal hu?” Love this man! . . #lovethis #shootlife #dhoni #classicbarber #barber #menshair #shooting #madowothair #mahi #hairblogger A post shared by बमà¥à¤¬à¤ à¤à¥ रानॠ(@sapnamotibhavnani) on Feb 14, 2019 at 11:54pm PST The photos of his new look were shared by Bhavnani on Instagram. “Hello #captainsaab #newlook. Hair/Makeup by me. “Kaunse pagal ne kabhi kaha hai ke main pagal hu?” Love this man,” she captioned her Instagram post. While his new look would surely have the fans excited, we'll be hoping that his form with the willow continues to aid the Indian team when they take the field against Australia in the first T20I on 24th February.
  10. The Indian cricket team had already elated their fans following their historic Test series win in Australia last month. But, beginning the New Year in emphatic style, the 'Men in Blue', now, have given the fans back home another reason to cheer for – their first ever bilateral ODI series win on the Australian soil. MS Dhoni, who has been on song in the series, took India past the target of 231 with the assistance of Kedar Jadhav to help India secure a series-deciding seven-wicket win at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). Recording their second consecutive win, India sealed the three-match series 2-1. The Jharkhand cricketer was once again the star of the show, scoring an unbeaten 87 to aid his side. It was also his third fifty in a row this year, which earned him the 'Man of the Series' award. If Dhoni led from the front, Kedar Jadhav (61*), too, made a mark in the supporting role. Earlier, Yuzvendra Chahal's career-best spell (6-42) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar's 2-28 spelt doom for the Australian batsmen. Struggling against the Indian spinner, the hosts were bundled out for 230 runs in 48.4 overs. Here's a look at how the twitterverse reacted to India's historic ODI series win: "Aapke MAN OF THE SERIES hain..."#AUSvIND #Dhoni ðð pic.twitter.com/aUkoL2O7Sx — R E B E L - રà«àª¬àª² - रà¥à¤¬à¤² (@Gadhvilaxman) January 18, 2019 #Dhoni this series 51,55*,87* ðâ¤ï¸ 193runs Man of the Series ð¥ #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/3d1XokmMp1 — Rishi balaji (@rishibalaji97) January 18, 2019 3 fifties in a row. Highest Scorer for #TeamIndia in #AusvInd #ODI. Total Runs 193, Avg 193 !! They said he is finished, They said he is old, They said he is a liability, They said he must make way. He just smiled at all of them & let his willow do the talking #Dhoni #MSDhoni pic.twitter.com/BqnA3FZGIK — Prabhu (@Cricprabhu) January 18, 2019 This is India's first bilateral ODI series win in Australia.#AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/PFZPqvVGKF — RVCJ Media (@RVCJ_FB) January 18, 2019 Virat ð Kohli: - First Asian captain to win a Test series in Aus. - Most international 100s by a visiting batsman in Aus. - Only Indian captain to score an ODI century in Aus. - First Indian captain to win a bilateral ODI series in Aus. pic.twitter.com/2SxPy4YeBo — Vinay (@SemperFiUtd) January 18, 2019 Kedar Jadhav fans right now. #AusvInd pic.twitter.com/DNMB4QtIfR — SAGAR (@sagarcasm) January 18, 2019 Kedar Jadhav is a game changing player, with both bat and ball. Should never be dropped. — Short Third Man (@vyatikram188) January 18, 2019
  11. Australian cricketers Steve Smith and David Warner, who are currently in the middle of a year-long suspension for the infamous case of ball-tampering during the Test series against South Africa in 2018, will be eligible to play in all formats of the game in the next three months, as their ban is scheduled to get lifted on 28th March 2019. Meanwhile, their partner in crime, Cameron Bancroft is still waiting for an official contract after his 9-month-ban got over in November 2018. View this post on Instagram Thanks everyone for the messages. I had a great time last night. I'm very humbled to receive the AB medal. I don't play the game for personal accolades but at the same time I'm glad I've been able to contribute in some way to the success of the Australian cricket team. A post shared by Steve Smith (@steve_smith49) on Feb 13, 2018 at 1:35am PST Until then, they are to be kept completely separate from Cricket Australia, the governing body for all of professional and amateur cricket in Australia, and all their activities. The Cricket Australia awards, which CA will be hosting on 11th February 2019, is considered to be the most prestigious awards and is a platform used to honour the best performers, and those who have provided exceptional service to the game of cricket in Australia by immortalising their names in the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame. The ban on the above-mentioned players therefore also extends to each and every event the authority organises, including the Cricket Australia Awards. View this post on Instagram Well done to this bloke @steve_smith49 what else can we say about him. Absolute gun. Well done on an amazing year skip and look forward to you continuing your great form. #abmedalistX2 A post shared by David Warner (@davidwarner31) on Feb 12, 2018 at 5:05am PST Smith, Warner and Bancroft have not been invited to the award ceremony as currently, they are not under any contract with the cricket governing body. These awards are completely based on a voting system which was heavily dominated by Steve Smith and David Warner in the past four years sharing the Allan Border medal which is the highest honour an active cricketer could win, along with a couple of ODI and Test match accolades. Whatever votes that were acquired by the trio will stand valid, however, due to the fact that they were suspended for a specific period of time and not a definite number of matches, they will not be eligible for any of the awards.
  12. The Indian team may have done poorly in the first ODI against Australia in Sydney, and suffered a loss no fan is proud of. But that hasn't stopped skipper Virat Kohli to take out time from his schedule and have a good time with wife and actress Anushka Sharma. View this post on Instagram Days like these â¤ï¸ð¥° A post shared by AnushkaSharma1588 (@anushkasharma) on Jan 13, 2019 at 4:22am PST Anushka is currently in Australia with Virat, where the Indian cricket team is playing ODIs against the Australian team. However, post the recent historic test series win against Australia, the latest loss has rubbed cricket fans the wrong way. When Virat recently shared a picture with his wife on Twitter, in what looked like a pastoral countryside in Australia, cricket fans on the platform began to troll the guy in no time at all. ♥ï¸ pic.twitter.com/uLa7UwLvMX — Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) January 13, 2019 While some shared their disappointment with the team's last performance, others advised Kohli to focus on his game instead of whiling away his time over less important things. Now, we are all aware of how lame and notorious Twitter can get when it comes to giving out their not-so-important opinions on others, and this time was no different. Twitter came out full force to remind Virat of the need of the hour, and here are a few tweets that were particularly hard. Take a look at what people said: ye sab chhodo.. runs kaise bane uspe dhyan de — Parshva (@Parshva7939) January 13, 2019 Next match la concentration kholi — Sarkar Ramesh (@SarkarRamesh3) January 13, 2019 Start practice #King_kohli ,, don't do anything wrong in 2nd ODI be away from @AnushkaSharma as much as possible... — @Sangukotin18...!!!@imvkohlið© !DBOSS....ð© (@sangukotin18) January 13, 2019 Grt preparing for 2nd ODI vs @CricketAus — SENDILNATHAN P (@sendil_ajith) January 13, 2019 Bro please play well atleast in 2nd odi, u r not consistent after ur century in perth-17,81,0,28,3 this is not d VK we seen — Pradeep Vijay (@Pradeep95572466) January 13, 2019 For ur INCONSISTENCY,Another reason is creating, SORRY TO SAY THis,U STARTED TO POST PIC ON PRE EVE OF NEW YEAR,there started — Pradeep Vijay (@Pradeep95572466) January 13, 2019 Bhai khel pe bhi dhyan dedo thoda — Akbar (@rider_akbar) January 13, 2019 You aren't practicing for next ODI — Krishna Kumar (@imswingtrader) January 13, 2019 ♥ï¸ pic.twitter.com/uLa7UwLvMX — Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) January 13, 2019 Well, there you see. Twitter has gone all out, and isn't really happy about the fact Virat and Anushka are making memories like any other couple in this world. They can't seem to look beyond the Indian skipper to acknowledge that Virat also happens to be a husband and has a life outside of the cricket field. Can we stop with the criticisms already please?
  13. Despite dominating the fourth Test, the Indian cricket teams and their fans would've surely been disappointed after light drizzle and bad light led to a draw against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). Though Virat Kohli's men would have ideally liked another win in the series, they'd cherish the fact that the 4th Test draw barely had any repercussions on their 2-1 lead, which eventually allowed them to create history Down Under. Things were a bit anti-climatic in the end, as India had a fair chance of adding insult to the injury with a 3-1 victory margin as they got Australia to follow-on in their own backyard for the first time in 30 years after scoring 622 in their only innings at the SCG. Such was the vulnerability of the hosts' batting line-up, that a full day's play probably could have been enough to win a record three Tests in a single series in Australia, had the heavens not opened up. The tame draw at the SCG did frustrate the players, but there's no denying that Team India and the fans back home savoured their first ever Test series win on Australian soil - something that eluded all of the previous touring parties from the country for the past 71 years. © AP "Firstly, I want to say I've never been more proud of being part of a team, than this one right here. The culture we've built...our transition began right here, where I took as captain, and I can't believe that after four years we've won here. Just one word to say, 'proud', to lead this team and it's an honour and privilege. The boys make the captain look good," Kohli, an elated captain, said after their Test series win. Now, with one of Indian cricket's famous away series wins, Kohli's brigade has arguably etched its name in the history books, right up there with Ajit Wadekar's team that triumphed in West Indies and England in 1971, Kapil Dev's men, who won in England in 1986 and Rahul Dravid & co who also defeated the Englishmen in their own backyard in 2007. Owing to their success, Indian coach Ravi Shastri, too, reiterated on the importance of their latest triumph. “I will tell you how satisfying this is for me. World Cup 1983, World Championship 1985...this is as big or even bigger because this is in the truest format of the game, that is Test cricket,” he said. © BCCL "Past is history, future is a mystery. We have won today after 71 years and I'd like to live in the present. And salute my captain for being the captain of the team that beat Australia for the first time in Australia in a series," Shastri added. While there was no surprise to see Shastri praising his boys, the fans on the social media, once again, took the opportunity to troll the Indian coach with hilarious memes. Many Congrats Team India and fellow Indians. Despite factors like foreign soil, Australia's invincibility at home, unfavorable pitches for our players, Ravi Shastri in the dressing room, our team has done what has never been done before. Hats off !#IndvAus — The-Lying-Lama (@KyaUkhaadLega) January 7, 2019 Pic 1: How Ravi Shastri sees himself right now Pic 2: How we see him #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/TEGpf2K3az — Corporate Dalit (@CorporateDalit) January 7, 2019 Team India performs well and earns all respect, Ravi Shastri loses whatever's left by giving stupid remarks series after series. Yes, #TeamIndia has done a great job but how fair is it to demean World Cup heroes of 1983? Does he know the diff b/w this Aus Team & 1983's WI Team? https://t.co/1NfALc9xzq — Sir Jadeja (@SirJadeja) January 7, 2019 Another lowblow from Ravi Shastri before ending the press conference. Leaves us all (yet again) with a bad taste in the mouth. Says, "I'd like to thank my media buddies from India for what they've done" while laughing and Kohli giggling from behind #AUSvIND — Sreshth Shah (@sreshthx) January 7, 2019 Ravi Shastri's contribution to Team India's series win in Australia. #INDvAUS #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/RvgG84TmPz — Krishna (@Atheist_Krishna) January 7, 2019 View from Ravi Shastri's hotel room after the historic win.. #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/4jXvB0cH2I — Rohit Swain (@rhtswn) January 7, 2019 The only bad thing about a series victory abroad wud be a post match press conference by Ravi Shastri. Hope to God there isn't one . Something's gotta give here. #INDvsAUS — Rajdeep (@morerajdeep) January 7, 2019 How Ravi Shastri helped team India: pic.twitter.com/cisuXKbA7R — ð­ðððððð (@my2bit) January 7, 2019 Ravi shastri going for a long drive after Team india win Test series.ð .#INDvsAUS #BoxingDayTest pic.twitter.com/lvZF9sCfEF — नादान परिà¤à¤¦à¥ð®ð³ (@Gauri_doonite) January 7, 2019 Top 3 scorers of the series from India: 3. Rishabh Pant: 350 runs. 2. Cheteshwar Pujara: 521 runs. 1. Ravi Shastri: 650 bottles.#INDvAUS — Sunil- The cricketer (@1sInto2s) January 7, 2019 Lessons you learn in your #Corporatelife #indvsaus #fakes #Indvsaus #Ravishastri #corpgyan pic.twitter.com/CxeGjtse4E — Jitendra Soni (@jdsoni7) January 7, 2019 #AUSvIND After winning Test series in Australia Ravi Shastri - Alexa play my Fav song. Alexa- pic.twitter.com/WP9mfuNaOT — Shivam Sharma (@Oye_Jahazi) January 7, 2019
  14. While the last match of the Test series between India and Australia wasn't eventful as rain and bad light caused for rather disappointing Days 4 and 5 in Sydney, the Indian Cricket Team were in a comfortable spot as they forced the Aussies with a follow on in the first innings to break yet another record. The Sydney match did not deliver any conclusive results, but the 31-run win in the first Test in Adelaide and the 137-run victory in the third Test in Melbourne guaranteed Virat Kohli and the Men in Blue a 2-1 victory against Tim Paine's Test Squad. This victory in Australia has significance a lot greater than any other Test win as this is for the very first time that India have been able to win a Test series on Australian soil. Ever since Team India began to play Test matches way back in 1947, there have been 12 Test series between the two cricketing titans in Australia out of which eight were won by the Aussies and three were drawn before India finally won the 2018-19 Border-Gavaskar trophy. While the majority of the team performed well, the one man behind India's successful trip Down Under was Cheteshwar Pujara who was named the Man of the Match for the fourth and final Test for scoring a massive 193-run individual score in the first innings and also the Man of the Series for his exceptional batting performance in which he scored a total of 521 runs in 7 innings. Needless to say, India took to Twitter to celebrate the grand victory and showered Kohli's boys with the well-deserved praises. Congratulations. Today, the Indian cricket team wins its first ever Test series in Australia. This is a historic achievement. We are proud of you — Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) January 7, 2019 Congratulations to @imVkohli and his team for reaching one of Indian cricket's final frontiers and winning a test series in Australia for the first time. Gritty batting, marvellous fast bowling and a fine team effort has done us proud. Let's make a habit of it! #PresidentKovind — President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) January 7, 2019 @cheteshwar1 congratulations on the player of the series brother. You deserve it and so much more for all that you have encountered and overcome in Ur career thus far. You broke the Aussie into the ground and how!! ðð½‍âï¸ðªð½Savour this moment!! Lots of love brother! ð¤ #AUSvIND — Robin Aiyuda Uthappa (@robbieuthappa) January 7, 2019 When was the last time you did something for the first time? Historic 1st Test Series win for India in Australia! Superb effort by #TeamIndia ! It may have ended in rain but that's not going to dampen the celebrations! Proud #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/xVN9OZtye5 — Suresh Rainað®ð³ (@ImRaina) January 7, 2019 THANK YOU! 2-1 ð®ð³ð®ð³ #TeamIndia #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/syKRSOgaWQ — BCCI (@BCCI) January 7, 2019 Even the Australians didn't hold back on the love: Congratulations to @imVkohli & his Indian Team on winning their first ever series in Australia. They outplayed @CAComms in all departments. Very well deserved. #AUSvIND #pinktest https://t.co/UkEJcrzJ3I — Glenn McGrath (@glennmcgrath11) January 7, 2019 Congratulations team ð®ð³ on a very well played Test Match series 2-1 ðð»ð — Michael Clarke (@MClarke23) January 7, 2019 Congratulations to India for winning the Test series in Australia for the first time ever ðð¼ @Jaspritbumrah93 I was so impressed with your performance throughout this series! Fast,… https://t.co/7fMSNEeJ1q — Mitchell Johnson (@MitchJohnson398) January 7, 2019 A special moment for Team India #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/1zWAwMh1LE — cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) January 7, 2019
  15. The 2018-19 Border-Gavaskar Cup has literally been a record-breaking series so far. In the last 13 innings played between India and Australia, players from both the teams have smashed through some extraordinary records, which no one believed were breakable. Here is a list of all the major records the Men in Blue have broken until now: 1st Test - Adelaide 1. Rishabh Pant gloved a total of record 11 catches in the first Test which took place in Adelaide. Although he tied the record with England's Jack Russell and South Africa's AB de Villiers, it was a first for an Indian wicket-keeper. 2. The win in Adelaide made Virat Kohli the first Indian captain since Anil Kumble to win a Test match in the city. Kumble won a Test match way back in 2008. 3. India also became the first Asian country to win Test matches in Australia, South Africa and England in a single calendar year. 2nd Test - Perth 1. Mohammed Shami's six-wicket haul in Perth rocketed his total to 44 in 2018 which made him the first Indian pacer since Ishant Sharma (2011) to take over 40 wickets in a calendar year. 2. A Struggling KL Rahul tallied Sunil Gavaskar's record for getting bowled out for the highest number of times (3) in both the innings of Test matches in a single series. 3. By scoring his fourth century against Australia, Kohli equalled former Windies captain Clive Lloyd's record of the most number of Test tons hit by a visiting captain in Australia. 3rd Test - Melbourne 1. Breaking Syed Kirmani's record for the most number of Test series dismissals by an Indian wicket-keeper which stood at 19, the 21-year-old Rishabh Pant registered 20 dismissals under his name when he sent Nathan Lyon to the locker room in the last innings of the third test. 2. Jasprit Bumrah's 6/56 is the best bowling figures put up by an Indian at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. As an Indian bowler, Bumrah now has the second-best bowling record in Australia after Kapil Dev. 3. With a total of 1,138 Test cricket runs in 2018, Kohli overtook former Indian skipper Rahul Dravid as the highest scoring Indian Test batsman on foreign soil in a calendar year. 4. By notching 76 runs in Melbourne, debutant Mayank Agarwal broke a 72-year-old record of scoring the most number of runs in Australia on debut by an Indian batsman. The record rested with Dattu Phadkar who registered 51 runs on his debut against Australia back in 1947. 4th Test (Till Now) - Sydney 1. With brilliant batting skills and patience shown by Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant, Team India was able to put up a monstrous score of 622/7d, which is the highest India have scored since 2007. 2. In the match of his life, Pant scored a massive 159 after Pujara departed for 193, breaking the record for the highest score by an Indian keeper in an away Test, previously held by MS Dhoni. 3. Cheteshwar Pujara has faced 1,251 balls in the 7 innings that he has batted with at least 200 balls in four of these innings. This feat of Pujara's broke Sunil Gavaskar's record of three innings in a series in Australia with 200+ balls played that he achieved during 1977-78.
  16. After rain washed out the morning session on the final day, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday, Viral Kohli and Co. finally defeated Australia by 137 runs and got closer to winning the four-match series with a lead of 2-1. The 2-1 lead has ensured that India will retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy and Kohli has said that the team will go all out to win the final match, which will take place at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Twitter/ BCCI This victory was also special because it was India's 150th Test and nearly 37 years ago, the team won a Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, after Sunil Gavaskar's men defeated Greg Chappell's team in the 1980-81 series. Earlier, it was Kapil Dev who played a huge role in that victory. This time, it was Jasprit Bumrah who turned out to be the hero of this match, thanks to his stellar performance. Twitter This win is reason enough for both Team India and their fans to rejoice and celebrate ahead of the New Year, and looks like firecrackers have started bursting on social media already. Incredible effort by #TeamIndia to take a 2-1 lead, especially @Jaspritbumrah93 who has played an instrumental role in this win. He has gone from strength to strength in all formats of the game. Definitely one of the best in the world today. #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/vweoHd0nEE — Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) December 30, 2018 37 years 10 months ago was the last time India won a test at the MCG, none of the players from either sides were born. This win is one to savour & cherish for a long time and a perfect end to 2018 for Team India. Each player can be very proud of their contribution to this winð — VVS Laxman (@VVSLaxman281) December 30, 2018 Memorable win for #TeamIndia at the MCG. Great team effort and now we have an opportunity to create history at Sydney. Congratulations to each and every member of the team and to our domestic cricket where our cricketers enhance their skills. pic.twitter.com/osU6HHCSQl — Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) December 30, 2018 What a win!! Proud to be part of this unit . Onto Sydney now. Jai hind ð®ð³ð®ð³ð®ð³ pic.twitter.com/DsW8WXRMGj — Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) December 30, 2018 Great win here for the Team. Special effort by the lads, the one that will remembered for a long time @BCCI #TeamIndia pic.twitter.com/TyVglQY7qO — Rohit Sharma (@ImRo45) December 30, 2018 Ishant Sharma takes Lyon. India beat Australia by 137 runs. Lead the 4 match series 2-1. What a performance overall from Team India. Much deserved victory. ð¥³ððð®ð³ #AUSvIND #INDvAUS #BoxingDayTest pic.twitter.com/zIxRK9zwR3 — Sir Jadeja (@SirJadeja) December 30, 2018 Now Ishant Sharma's reation at sydny #INDvsAUS pic.twitter.com/6ywGimEVit — Rajesh Ranwa (@im_RanwA) December 30, 2018 #TeamIndia Well Played Boys ðððððððð India beat Australia by 137 runs in 3rd Test A memorable victory, No 1 spot justified, "Gavaskar Trophy" 2-1! #AUDvIND#2018Wrapped with @BCCI victory .. INDIA INDIA ð®ð³ð®ð³ð®ð³ð®ð³ ðHere we go...ð pic.twitter.com/80TpD0q0Qy — Khushboo Sharma (@khushbootweet) December 30, 2018 #AUSvsIND Great victory. Well done India. And especially well done, Bumrah. Here, this much photoshop only, I can do... pic.twitter.com/zQ7h3ocek1 — Ramesh Srivats (@rameshsrivats) December 30, 2018 The Man of the Moment and the best in the business - BOOM ð¥ @Jaspritbumrah93 ð Amazing performance by this guy here and the entire team ð®ð³ð pic.twitter.com/8LMYGgTL43 — hardik pandya (@hardikpandya7) December 30, 2018
  17. It feels like one of those days when things end on a happy note. Despite rain delaying the commencements on Day 5 of the 3rd Test, Team India wrapped up early to register the second win of the 4-game series and took a 2-1 lead against the Aussies at their home-turf behind the Man of the Match, Jasprit Bumrah, who took 9 wickets in the match and Ravindra Jadeja, with five wickets under his belt. Nobody said that the Indians' trip Down Under would be a cakewalk both on or off the pitch. While the Men in Blue struggled to make runs in the second innings, some of the rather notorious “fans” of Australian cricket made their lives a tad more difficult by barking racially motivated taunts at them. The authorities at the Melbourne Cricket Ground issued formal warnings after chants of 'Show us your visa' roared within the stadium. “Victoria Police and stadium security are monitoring the behaviour of the crowd in that section of the stadium,” announced a Cricket Australia spokesperson post the incident, “and have had several discussions with those fans in that bay to remind them about appropriate crowd behaviour, as per venue entry terms and conditions.” This came later on during the same day when Indian skipper Virat Kohli was being called “a wanker” as he fielded at the boundary during the first innings. Kohli - who has been infamous for getting in trouble for showing 'the finger' to the Australian crowd in the early days of his international career - held his own with utmost grace and replied with a brilliant sense of humour as he took off his cap and bowed before the hostile audience. India captain @imVkohli was greeted with the chant of "#Kohli is a wanker" by the MCG crowd. His response... pic.twitter.com/YUTUh3woIy — Telegraph Sport (@telegraph_sport) December 28, 2018 India defeated the Aussies by 137 runs to gain a 2-1 lead in the series. The 4th Test begins on 3rd January, 2019. Will Kohli's boys be able to take the series 3-1 or will Paine and team make them settle for a tie?
  18. Ahead of their much-anticipated tour of Australia, the Indian cricket team knew they had a potential chance of creating history Down Under. While they were heavily favoured in the limited-overs series, the biggest test for the visiting side was undoubtedly the Tests where the hostile conditions posed a major threat for the Indian cricketers. But, contrary to popular perception, the Indian team put their best foot forward in the first Test and showed everyone why they are the No. 1 side in the longest version of the game. Showcasing great temperament and maturity, the visitors checked all the boxes in what eventually turned into a brilliant 31-run win at the Adelaide Oval. If the batsmen appeared responsible against the Aussies, the bowlers showcased versatility as the game progressed through the days. It's needless to say that the Indian side looked convincing in almost every session over a span of five days to eventually script a memorable win. And, as India took a 1-0 lead in the four-match series, skipper Virat Kohli, too, etched his name in the history books. © AP For a man who has witnessed a marauding run this year, Kohli couldn't do much with the willow as he managed to score just 3 & 34 across two innings. But, even if his bat couldn't breathe fire, Kohli, with his impeccable leadership skills, still clinched the unique feat of becoming the first-ever Asian captain to win a Test match in at least South Africa, England and Australia. Kohli-led India, that also became the first Indian side to win an opening Test in a series on the Australian soil, started the year on a promising note when they toured the Proteas. Despite losing the first two Tests in Centurion and Cape Town, the out-of-sorts Kohli brigade made a noticeable comeback and went on to win the third game at Johannesburg. Their next big stop was then in England where Kohli had witnessed a dismal outing back in 2014. As many would have anticipated, India began the Test series poorly, losing the first two games. But, as witnessed in South Africa, the Indian team bounced back in the third Test at Nottingham where an emphatic 203-run win once again proved what this side was capable of. Though Kohli's men lost the Test series 4-1, their outing in English conditions was still far better than those of their predecessors. © Reuters Apart from his team, Kohli himself had a brilliant run in both South Africa and England. Proving his class against the Proteas, Kohli emerged as the highest run-getter amongst the two sides in the Test series, scoring 286 runs in 6 innings at an average of 47.67. In England, Kohli silenced his naysayers by scoring 593 runs in 10 innings at a brilliant average of 59.30, showing how far he has come since his forgettable outing last time around. Though there are still three more Tests to go Down Under and Australia, despite the absence of their stalwarts Steve Smith and David Warner, still pose threat to India, the Kohli brigade, for now, can bask in the glory of a brilliant team effort that has allowed them to take a crucial 1-0 lead in what promises to be an exciting series.
  19. I watched most of India's batting on the 3rd day after waking up early on Saturday morning to do so. When I went to sleep on Friday night, I feared that Australia might still be batting, with Mitchell Starc and Travis Head doing their best impression of Jason Gillespie and Steve Waugh. But India earned lead of 15, which, from 127/6 still mean that the last 4 Australian wickets added 108. Murali Vijay played as though he knows he is keeping the spot warm for Prithvi Shaw. KL Rahul played like a left-wing legislator who, having come through a surprisingly close challenge in an election, votes and speaks as though he's determined never again to be challenged on the basis of not being left-wing enough. Rahul spent much of the series in England speculating hopelessly outside off stump while the ball moved extravagantly off the pitch. At the Oval he turned the tables on that area outside the off stump, slaughtering most deliveries hung out there by England's expectant seamers. He seems to have carried that vengeance with him to Australia. The Adelaide wicket has been cagey. Its not flat and its not a flier. There's always been a little bit for the bowlers off the pitch. Not enough to bother the player who is prepared to bide his time and play late. But enough to make the more cavalier style of batting a risky proposition. The outfield has been slower than any in recent memory anywhere in the world, testing patience even more than usual. Australia's right-arm seamers bowled well today. Mitchell Starc seems to be enervated by the pitch and looked well below his best. More than Cummins or Hazlewood, Starc appeared far more anxious about his choice of length. I haven't watch Ashwin bowl in this Test, but I did watch the superb Nathan Lyon. It took all of Cheteshwar Pujara's experience to keep him at bay. Pujara's batting against Lyon reminded me of his innings against Monty Panesar (especially) and Graeme Swann at the Wankhede stadium in 2012. Watching Pujara gets me thinking about transport. He runs between wickets like a large leisure boat. But more importantly, he bats like a train. He has his track and he sticks to it. Against Lyon, Pujara batted according the field set to him. Lyon consistently kept a slip and a two man leg-trap with a short-leg and leg-gully, but no silly mid-off. He bowled for the foot marks outside the right hander's off stump. Pujara kept kicking the ball away with the bat glued to the inside of the pad, drawing Lyon's line closer to his middle and leg-stump, at which point he would try to score into the leg side. Pujara's bat never advanced past the pad. He seemed absolutely confident that the ball was never hit the stumps from that line of attack. We know he was right because once, after Pujara had kicked the ball away after advancing a step down the pitch, the umpire gave the LBW to Lyon, only to have it reversed on review. Lyon might have moved that leg-slip to silly mid-off with some advantage. Pujara does not sweep or paddle, and the silly mid-off might have forced the batsman to change tracks. Australia defended deeper against Kohli. Nathan Lyon had a deep mid-wicket to Kohli for most of his innings. He also didn't have the leg-gully. Kohli played with the bat far more than Pujara. This meant that he would score more runs, especially into the off side, but it also meant that Lyon was offered both edges of Kohli's bat. With the wicket beginning to wear from nearly 120 overs from each end, the likelihood of the ball misbehaving out of the rough is improving steadily. Towards the end of the day, there was a break in play. Almost immediately after that, Kohli played at Lyon's stock ball to the right-hander with the bat well in front of the pad, and the catch popped up to Aaron Finch at short leg. For Lyon, it was a reward for some magnificent bowling. But I can't help wondering if he might have benefited more if he had not allowed Pujara to play him to a stalemate. Lyon could have gotten Pujara, but the batsman's methods ensured that the odds of this happening were minimized. It was a terrific session of play all in all. The match situation favors India, if only because Australia have to bat last, the wicket is beginning to wear and nobody has scored freely on this pitch.
  20. Ahead of their much-anticipated tour of Australia, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced the Indian squad for the limited-overs series. While Hardik Pandya missed out due to injury, his elder brother Krunal was handed an opportunity to fill in his shoes as an all-rounder for India. But, the elder Pandya didn't really have the outing his family or fans would have expected. Roped in ahead of specialist spinner Yuzvendra Chahal, Krunal witnessed an absolute nightmare with the ball. The left-arm spinner was clobbered all around the park (mainly by Glenn Maxwell) as he conceded a staggering 55 runs (including six sixes) in just four overs. If his bowling performance irked the Indian cricket fans, his mediocre show with the willow eventually summed up his forgettable night. Coming in to bat, at a time when India desperately needed his big-hitting abilities in the death overs at the Gabba, the left-hander couldn't manage to score more than just two runs. Twitter/@BCCI Owing to his dismal performance, Krunal attracted a lot of criticism and was heavily trolled by the Indian cricket fans on the social media. His mediocre show at Brisbane was undoubtedly one of the biggest factors why India eventually lost that game, but, if anyone knows Krunal or has seen his growth as a player, they'd agree that this bloke is a man of comebacks. He has done that in the Indian Premier League (IPL) earlier, and on 25th November, Krunal did it again at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). The 27-year-old ran through the Australian batting order, bamboozling the likes of D'Arcy Short, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott and Alex Carey to halt the rampaging Aussie charge early in the game. The Baroda cricketer eventually finished his spell with impressive figures of 4/36 - the best bowling figures by a spinner Down Under. Playing only his sixth T20I for India, it was also Krunal's best bowling figures in the shortest version of the game. His commendable feat was lauded by the BCCI and the fans alike. While the Indian cricket board took to Twitter to highlight Krunal's feat, the Indian cricket fans, too, showered praise on the Indian all-rounder. 4-0-36-4 @krunalpandya24 now holds the record for the best figures by a spinner in T20Is in Australia ðð pic.twitter.com/AFtfusuljo — BCCI (@BCCI) 25 November 2018 Well done krunalððð — Mahi 73 (@Mahi7310) 25 November 2018 Burnol moment for his hatersð¤£ðð — Deval Shah (@DevalShah123) 25 November 2018 Spellðððð — Nick™ (@Iam_Niteesh) 25 November 2018 Krunal ð¥ð¥ — Prabhas (@pavansaaho45) 25 November 2018
  21. Following a marauding run against West Indies at home, the Indian cricket team couldn't have been better prepared to travel to Australia for their much-anticipated tour this year. Boasting of match-winning batsmen and bowlers in their side, Team India undoubtedly looked stronger of the two sides preparing to lock horns in four Tests, three T20Is and as many ODIs. Starting the tour with the T20I series, the Indian cricket fans were anticipating a clinical performance from their national team in the first game at the Gabba. But, the Virat Kohli brigade looked far from the side that had recently demolished Windies at home. There were drop catches, mediocre batting displays and eventually a heartbreaking defeat at the packed Brisbane Cricket Ground. After electing to field first, Kohli's men seemed like they meant business, with both Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah looking sharp early on. And the fact that Australia got their first boundary on the 18th delivery of their innings despite the presence of the dangerous Aaron Finch and D'Arcy Short at the crease, highlights the tidy lines and lengths of India's pace bowling duo. With just 12 runs in 3 overs on the board, the Australian openers were beginning to feel a bit of pressure which opened a window of opportunity for the visitors. In the fourth over, Finch punched the ball straight into the hands of Kohli who couldn't do more than letting it slip through his hands. The drop catch eventually saw Bumrah conceding two consecutive boundaries later in the over. Virat Kohli leads by examples. Drops an easy catch of @AaronFinch5.#INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/AH8O5JouuU — Yash Bhati (@yashbhati0017) November 21, 2018 The Indian team eventually took three wickets through Khaleel Ahmed and Kuldeep Yadav which put the shackles on Australia's innings. With Marcus Stoinis and Glenn Maxwell still finding their feet, India stuttered further in the field. In the 13th over, KL Rahul's confusion in overthrowing the ball to the bowler or going for the stumps allowed Maxwell a second life - one he capitalised on later in the innings. Kohli is having a rare horrible day in the field Missed a catch,maybe should have come up to the stumps during that Maxwell run out chance,he was at short mid wicket,who should have ideally collected the ball,as Clarke on air rightly mentioned And then this misfield#INDvAUS — Devesh arora (@Devesharora20) November 21, 2018 The same over saw Kohli erring in the field again as he failed to get his hands around the ball after sprinting a long way in the circle. With India looking mediocre in the field, the Australian duo made the most of the chances they got. Given a lifeline earlier, Maxwell smoked sixes at will, sent the ball to the railings of the second-tier and even hit the spider cam as Indian bowling unit (mostly Pandya) ducked for cover. © BCCL With the partnership between Maxwell and Stoinis reaching 77 runs, India desperately needed a breakthrough and Bumrah provided one in the 17th over, only for Khaleel to put down a sitter. Batting on 17-ball 30, Stoinis chopped the ball straight down the throat of young Indian pacer which eventually let it burst through his hand before drawing the fury of Bumrah. Amid a blistering batting display from the Australian batsmen, India found some relief in the rain. After a brief disruption, the players returned to the field and Bumrah dismissed Maxwell, a wicket that we reckon came a tad too late. With the game reduced to 17 overs (including a five-over powerplay), the Indian fans were neither bothered by the revised 174-run target nor with the 10.23 required rate, owing to their visitor's strong batting line-up. But, that wasn't the case. Shikhar Dhawan took the charge of the Indian run-chase early on, smashing five boundaries in the first four overs of their innings. With Dhawan going hammer and tongs at the Aussie bowlers, Rohit slow start wasn't really a concern. But his decision to charge down the wicket against Behrendorff in the 5th over, which eventually cost India his wicket, was outright unnecessary. © BCCL Rohit was sent back to the pavilion, but Dhawan's blitzkrieg continued to the sheer joy of Indian fans. The 46-run partnership between Dhawan and KL Rahul stabilised India's chase, but it was the former who did most of the scoring. And, Rahul's bid to accelerate his strike-rate failed big time after he decided to drive inside the line of Adam Zampa's googly, eventually losing his balance and getting stumped. Zampa was back into business in the 11th over, only this time it was priceless wicket of King Kohli. Unable to score against the Aussie spinner (1 off 4 balls), Kohli was feeling the heat when he stepped out of the crease to cut Zampa's top-spinner before eventually getting a top edge that was safely taken at short third man. © BCCL With Dhawan still dictating terms at the other end, India still fancied their chances with adequate depth in their batting order. But, Billy Stanlake got Dhawan out caught at third man in the 12th over to rattle India's run-chase. Young Rishabh Pant and Dinesh Karthik gave hope to the Indian fans after stitching a crucial 51-run partnership for the fifth wicket, but the ever-increasing asking rate proved a tad too much for them. The 16th over saw Andrew Tye dismissing Pant before Stoinis dashed India's hopes with consecutive wickets of Pandya and Karthik. In the end, India lost the game by a mere four runs (D/L method). A game that was undoubtedly a delight for the cricket fans, eventually proved to be a big wake up call for the Indian side. India scoring more than Australia yet losing. Australia ke score par laga GST bhaari pad gaya. But a good thrilling game to start the series.#AUSvIND — Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) November 21, 2018 There was a lot to learn from the contest for the visiting brigade. An ordinary day in the field is definitely not going to help a top-side like India to register wins Down Under. Moreover, the decision to play Pandya backfired big time as the all-rounder gave away 55 runs in 4 overs (including six sixes) and couldn't score more than two runs. If their poor bowling allowed Australia to amass crucial runs, their mediocre batting display and poor shot selections eventually summed up their forgettable outing at the Gabba. Given their batting might, Kohli-led India would have been reasonably happy about chasing 174 runs in 17 overs on any day. But, on the day, when it mattered, the high-flying Kohli brigade just couldn't do it.
  22. Over the years, the world of cricket has witnessed many opening batsmen making their mark in international cricket. From Saeed Anwar, Mathew Hayden to Virender Sehwag, all these Phenoms had a special talent of hitting the ball long and strong. While their blistering batting performances cut a sorry figure for the opposition bowlers, it also provided their respective sides roaring starts in the game. In the modern era of the sport, Rohit Sharma seems to be doing that job for India in limited-overs cricket. Rapidly establishing his reputation as one of the most destructive openers in the game, Rohit's malleable wrists and knack to find gaps with effortless drives have allowed India to set the ball rolling early in the innings. © BCCL While his job in the Indian line-up is predominantly at the top of the order, providing flying starts to his team, Rohit seems to have swapped his role as Virat Kohli's men get engrossed with the much-anticipated tour of Australia. Swapping his willow for a camera, Rohit seems to have become Team India's official photographer Down Under. The 31-year-old decided to test his 'shooting skills' with the camera as he went behind the lens to click the photos of Manish Pandey ahead of their first T20I at the Gabba. While Manish missed out on the spot in India's 12-man side for the first T20I, he was adequately aided by Rohit for the video. Directing Pandey to act for the video, Rohit said some encouraging words: "Pretend as if you're getting ready. It'll be just 10 seconds. You've to do something. I am going to do some direction. Let's see how it goes. A bit of a camera work rather, not direction actually," Rohit explained to the viewers. While the candid video brought a smile to the faces of Indian cricket fans, they will now be hoping for the 'Hitman' to resume his cricketing duties as the Kohli brigade gears up to establish dominance Down Under.
  23. After playing out a draw in the first Test, the second match between Pakistan and Australia in Abu Dhabi is turning out to be quite a funny affair. Eager to put their best foot forward, Pakistan were aided majorly by Sarfraz Ahmed and Fakhar Zaman in the first innings to reach a competitive total early on. But, despite scoring a brilliant 94 in the first innings, Sarfraz found himself trending on social media for his unique batting stance. While some couldn't help but poke fun at the Pakistan captain, others highlighted how fearless and confident he seemed against Nathan Lyon who has been on a high in the Test series. Interesting batting stance from Sarfaraz Ahmed #PAKvAUS #Cricket pic.twitter.com/GK9vtG3quE — #PAKvAUS (@QHACricket) October 16, 2018 And, now, another funny incident has come to the fore. During the third day's play, Azhar Ali was carrying the baton for Pakistan while batting in tandem with Asad Shafiq. The right-hander had already amassed 64 runs and looked set to build on his innings. However, carelessness and mediocrity spelt doom for the Pakistani batsman. In the 52nd over of the second innings, Ali went for a drive and eventually edged the ball past the gully fielder. Backing the ball to reach the fence, the Pakistani batsman walked down the pitch to have a chat with his partner at the non-striker's end. But, what Ali didn't realise was that the ball had stopped inches away from the ropes. Unbelievable. ð³ Azhar Ali run out whilst chatting with Shafiq in the middle, thinking he's hit a four. Except he didn't. Dumb and dumber. Easily the stupidest piece of cricket I've ever seen in 35 years of watching and playing cricket. Pakistan bloody Zindabad.#PAKvsAUS pic.twitter.com/nhFgRoq2aw — Abu Eesa Niamatullah (@Niamatullah) October 18, 2018 Unperturbed by the development in the outfield, Ali continued to chat with his partner Shafiq. But, the Australian players weren't as careless as their Pakistani counterpart. Mitchell Starc chased the ball, picked it up and threw it back to Tim Paine who whipped the bails off in a flash. Surprised by the commotion, Ali didn't realise that his carelessness and casual attitude had cost his team a vital wicket. And, by the time he realised what had happened, Ali looked shell-shocked as he stood in disbelief before eventually taking the long back into the hut. The dismal incident might have left his team disappointed, but it sure has left cricket fans in splits. Here's a look at the social media reactions on Ali's farcical run-out: this team found another way to entertain you :)ð — vineet (@vineet_designer) October 18, 2018 pakistan are the equivalent to Arsenal FC ð #Talented — Shahnyboy (@Shahny786) October 18, 2018 This team just can not disappoint you ..they will find new ways to get you entertained..#Azharali #PAKvAUS #AUSvsPAK — arvind (@arvind_1352) October 18, 2018 Classic Pakistan. ð — Ronald D. Sampson (@RDSampson_25) October 18, 2018 Funny thing is they still kept chatting even after they took bails off — Aneeeev (@canisurvivee) October 18, 2018 Lack of professionalism, ignorance shown by Pakistani batsman there, Australia did nothing wrong there — Ash (@Ayadav1808) October 18, 2018 Must have been some chat ððð @b_ginola — Natasha Mataire (@natashamugove) October 18, 2018 It doesn't get any better does it ð — Doley (@berniedole1) October 18, 2018 This is how surgical strike happened #PAKvAUS — NoEasyDay (@nishils2000) October 18, 2018 Run outs and Pakistan walk side by side. — Sahil (@Sahil81753491) October 18, 2018
  24. There are people who love to eat, there are people who love to cook and then there are people like me, who love both and have subscribed to a gazillion cooking and food channels on YouTube. And if you are anything like me or one of the million viewers who love to watch people flaunting their culinary skills, chances are that you might have followed this year's MasterChef Australia as well. MasterChef Australia 2018 was arguably one of the most exciting reality shows of this year. The finale, which was way better than the icing those contestants put on their cakes, gave the world Sashi Cheliah, a name people won't forget anytime soon. Instagram Indian-origin Sashi Cheliah created history by becoming the show's highest scorer ever (93 out of 100). He defeated Queensland's Ben Borsht to clinch this victory. But, more than his win, it is his story and future plans that is turning heads everywhere. Instagram Born in Singapore, Sashi worked with the Star Unit of Singapore Police Force for nearly a decade and was trained in rescue operations and counter-terrorism. In 2011, he moved to Adelaide, Australia where he started working as a prison officer in the women's prison. Instagram Who would have thought that an advertisement of MasterChef Australia on Facebook will change Sashi's life for good? Sashi's love for food grew after he moved to Australia and now, he wants to replicate authentic Indian, Malaysian and Chinese cuisine. Instagram Sashi has won $250,000 (Australian dollars) as prize money and now, he dreams of opening a restaurant that will serve Indian and South-East Asian cuisine. In fact, Sashi wants to hire ex-prisoners in order to provide them assistance, rehabilitation, and employment opportunities.
  25. Tim Cahill scored at four World Cups. Photo: AFPAustralia's all-time leading goal-scorer Tim Cahill retired from international football Tuesday, ending an illustrious career that has taken him to four World Cups.The 38-year-old, who scored 50...