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Found 102 results

  1. Virender Sehwag was one of the most destructive batsmen in the world at one point, and he put fear into the hearts of opening bowlers as he took his stance. Meanwhile, unknown to us all, he has also been a rabid Manchester United fan. It surfaced recently that while Sehwag was part of the broadcast team that was covering the India vs Pakistan match at Old Trafford in Manchester, he also visited the historic stadium of one of the most famous clubs in the world. View this post on Instagram Had a great tour of @manchesterunited ! Thank you for the gesture A post shared by Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) on Jun 18, 2019 at 1:16am PDT Manchester United also welcomed a host of Indian players Dinesh Karthik, Vijay Shankar and Yuzvendra Chahal to their esteemed grounds before congratulating them for their 89-run (DLS) victory over famous rivals Pakistan. ð®ð³ @BCCI players @DineshKarthik, @VijayShankar260 and @Yuzi_Chahal visited Old Trafford last week ð¸ Congrats on your #CWC19 win over Pakistan on Sunday ðª pic.twitter.com/eaS66J54R2 — Manchester United (@ManUtd) June 17, 2019 Sehwag has amassed over 8,000 runs in Test and ODI Cricket and still boasts the highest score by an Indian in International Test Cricket, 319, which was also the number which he was presented by authorities at the club. Through their website Manchester United quoted Sehwag in the buildup to the blockbuster match on Sunday, “Wherever the India or Pakistan fans are living, they're coming from there to Manchester to watch this game. It's a very big game. But if you look at the history, the record the Indian team has against Pakistan in World Cups, they've never lost. It's 6-0. So hopefully we can play well tomorrow and beat them again and make it 7-0. Maybe Cristiano will be happy, because that's his number!” Given that Sehwag was particularly good in England with two Test centuries on the island, the gesture from the footballing giants and the collaboration between the two powerhouses of the sport was genuinely good to see.
  2. Often labelled as the mother of all battles, the Indian cricket team's much-anticipated clash against Pakistan at the ongoing ICC World Cup on 16th June failed to live up to the billing. The contest, that pitted arch-rivals India and Pakistan against each other, turned out to be a one-sided affair as Virat Kohli-led brigade proved too good for their opponents at Old Trafford. While Rohit Sharma's blistering knock of 140 runs set the tone for India's mammoth total of 336 runs, a collective effort by their bowling unit, thoroughly complimented by some mediocre batting from Pakistani batsmen, powered Kohli & co to a 89-run triumph via Duckworth-Lewis method (D/L). A splendid 140 from Rohit Sharma, which came off just 113 balls, guided India to their seventh straight victory over Pakistan in World Cup cricket ð¥ The Hit-Man is our @Oppo Shotmaker for India v Pakistan. pic.twitter.com/CIDOxS7bo3 — ICC (@ICC) June 17, 2019 On one hand, where the Pakistani fans were left red-faced in the wake of their team's dismal show, the mood on the other side of the border was celebratory. From Bollywood celebrities, prominent politicians to crazed fans, everyone lauded the clinical show produced by the Indian cricket team which has now extended their unbeaten run to four games in the ongoing World Cup. Amongst the innumerable messages and celebratory videos, there's one that clearly stands out and sums up the mood of Indian fans. While Kohli & Co were busy cutting Pakistan a sorry figure on the field, Rishabh Pant and Ziva Dhoni were having a gala time in the stands. View this post on Instagram Partners in crime ð @ziva_singh_dhoni A post shared by Rishabh Pant (@rishabpant) on Jun 16, 2019 at 11:42am PDT Pant, who recently reached England as a backup following Shikhar Dhawan thumb injury, shared a video on Instagram where he was seen rooting for Team India alongside MS Dhoni's adorable daughter. Their cute video was liked and cherished by Indian cricket fans who also expressed their desire to see Pant donning Indian colours at the World Cup soon.
  3. ICC World Cup 2019 started out on a great note, with fans from all corners of the cricketing world tuning in to witness some of the best teams take each other head-on at the greatest platform there is in the sport. Sadly, the infamous English weather took over and literally washed out all the excitement and entertainment right out of the quadrennial tournament. Exactly how bad are the weather conditions in England? Well, in the last four days, we have only seen one match and less than eight overs of another match in total with eight teams getting one point each without putting in zero to negligible effort all due to the rains disrupting some of the greatest matches of the Cricket World Cup, one of which included the clash between the two teams that remain undefeated during the ongoing contest ie, India and Pakistan. Things have become so frustrating that it is almost comical now. Indian bowling all-rounder Kedar Jadhav even pushed out a video on the internet requesting the heavy, non-stop rains to move to Maharashtra and let them play cricket. Haha Kedar Jadhav asking rains from England to shift to Maharashtra ðâ¤ï¸ #INDvNZ #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/ZcdoKcypkT — Saurabh (@Boomrah_) June 13, 2019 In the same comical tone, the fans of the Men in Blue have begun a fun banter with the supporters of Sarfaraz Ahmed's Pakistan cricket team, letting them know that their chances of winning against Virat Kohli and the Indian cricket team are extremely slim. They went on to say that the only way for Team Pakistan to save themselves from a horrible and humiliating loss at the hands of the Bleed Blue army, is to pray that the downpour happens once again at Old Trafford, Manchester on Father's Day, this Sunday. This Sunday, the best way for Pakistan to avoid defeat in the match against India is to pray for rain, which is likely to spoil the game. Otherwise, Pakistan's defeat is sure. — Dr. Ashok Dhamija (@ashokdhamija) June 14, 2019 There is possibility that Pakistan will have a happy memory in this world cup. And may gain points against India There is plenty of chance for rain and match being washed out. — Chowkidar Vikram Joshi (@vikyjoshi3) June 14, 2019 Pakistan praying for rain and India showing them way to a na pakistan Train — MUKESH SURANA (@mukeshsurana) June 14, 2019 Pakistan team praying for Rain on Sunday against India because Baap rocks on Father's Day #ShameOnICC #ShameOnICC pic.twitter.com/B6Dkg62RJD — manish Agrawal (@MkAgrawal003) June 14, 2019 Only rain can save pakistan team from team india..#CWC — Puneet Suri (@Puneetsuri1) June 13, 2019 All jokes aside, India versus Pakistan is arguably the biggest match of World Cup 2019, maybe even bigger than the tournament final and if unfortunately, the rain does washout the Father's Day main event, the World Cup might lose out on whatever viewership it is enjoying right now.
  4. Going into the ICC World Cup, the Indian cricket team was tipped as one of the favourites to lift the coveted trophy in England & Wales this year. Staying true to their reputation, Team India made their intentions pretty clear by defeating the likes of South Africa and Australia to post consecutive wins in the ongoing tournament. Apart from their victories, it's the domination of the Indian team in almost all facets of the game that has allowed them to establish themselves as serious contenders this year - something that was validated by Michael Vaughan after their triumph over Australia. But, just when you thought all was going well, the 'Men in Blue' were dealt a major blow after the disclosure of Shikhar Dhawan's injury. The Indian opener, who rediscovered his form with a brilliant knock of 117 runs against Australia, has been ruled out for about two to three weeks owing to an alleged hairline fracture on his left thumb. The left-hander was struck on his left thumb by a Nathan Coulter-Nile's bouncer during India's 36-run win over Australia on 9th June. © Reuters The news has surely got the Indian team in a spot of bother. For a team that relies heavily on their top three, India will undeniably miss Dhawan at the top especially after his return to form following some nervy starts earlier. But, that's not the only thing that has got the Indian team management and selectors in a fix. Dhawan's absence is bound to disrupt Team India's batting line-up and team balance. His injury means that India will now have to find someone to replace him at the top while ensuring the middle-order stays intact. And, as the Indian selectors and team management consider viable options, the chorus on social media seems to be in support of Rishabh Pant. The Delhi batsman has been one of the finds for India in the past few months. His breathtaking strokeplay and aggressive batting style is not only capable of taking on the best bowling attacks, but also looks pleasing to the eye - something that has made him a fan-favourite in a short period of time. © Reuters But, despite his heroics on overseas tours and the IPL earlier this year, Pant was overlooked for Team India's 15-man squad for the ICC World Cup - something that caused quite an uproar on the social media. Two matches into the World Cup, Dhawan's injury has got the Indian selectors facing a similar situation where the fans are gearing up to slam them if they overlook Pant again. But, is he worth it? Going by his form and ability with the willow, any team would be lucky to have a batsman as capable as Pant in their batting line-up. But, the current situation is not about Pant or his batting capabilities, it's about Team India and maintaining its balance. Don't agree? Allow us to help you understand. With Dhawan leaving a void at the top, the Indian team management is likely to push KL Rahul to the opening slot alongside Rohit Sharma - an obvious choice considering he's well acclimatised to the conditions. Now, Rahul's ascension in the line-up leaves the no. 4 slot vacant which holds key to Indian batting order's stability. © Reuters Now, Pant cannot just walk into the Indian team and open the innings. That's just too big a risk in a tournament of World Cup's stature. He can surely be vital for the middle-order, but being one-dimensional is not going to help his cause. With MS Dhoni being an immovable object in the wicket-keeping role, Pant cannot be included just for his batting skills. If you take a look at India's middle-order, the likes of Kedar Jadhav and Hardik Pandya are capable of contributing with both bat and ball. Thus, when it comes to finding a potential replacement following Dhawan's injury, Vijay Shankar, and not Pant, appears to be the perfect fit in relation to the team balance. Shankar is a versatile batsman who is capable of batting anywhere in the middle. He is more than capable of holding the fort at one end in case of a collapse, and his wide array of strokes adequately allows him to accelerate the innings at the death overs. And, that's not all. Shankar's inclusion in the Indian team will not only bolster their batting, but will also add teeth to their bowling line-up - something that has left Pant in the shadows lately. In case of a bad day for frontline bowlers, Shankar can ease the pressure off by bowling in some of his medium-paced deliveries and giving his captain an extra option with the ball. In all fairness, Pant is a cricketer Team India can surely use, but cannot afford owing to the team balance. And, right now, given the situation, India needs Shankar who doesn't just fit the bill, but can prove to be crucial in India's dreams of clinching their third World Cup title this year.
  5. While the Indian cricket team is set to finally make their ICC World Cup 2019 debut against Faf du Plessis' Team South Africa at the Rose Bowl Cricket Ground in Hampshire the news of an alternate jersey for Virat Kohli's boys is making rounds in the cricketing world. "For televised ICC events all participating teams will be required to provide for two different coloured kits, except for the host country who has a preference in the choice of colour and may, if it chooses to do so, provide only one coloured kit to be worn in all matches throughout the event. In advance of the event the teams will be notified which coloured kit will be worn in each match," the ICC had said in a release. In essence, during the Cricket World Cup 2019, the hosts ie; Eoin Morgan's Team England have the luxury to play in their traditional 1992 World Cup throwback jersey which is light blue in colour. The Men in Blue, ironically enough, will be wearing their alternate jersey which is being speculated to be orange with dark blue designs all over. Abiding by this new rule made by the ICC, countries such as Bangladesh and South Africa have already released their second kit: Who else is excited about the World Cup ? :) pic.twitter.com/PyiBKPHRud — Tamim Iqbal Khan (@TamimOfficial28) May 25, 2019 Team India however have managed to maintain a sense of suspense about their new look. "The BCCI marketing team is still working on the design and the jersey will be unveiled very soon," a BCCI source told PTI. Having said that, IANS has released a tentative design for the new look that India might wear against their match against the World Cup hosts on 30th June 2019. Credit: IANS And while people are presuming this orange jersey to be Team India's 'away kit', IANS quoted a source saying: "There has been a lot of talks and speculation and people have been calling it an away jersey. But it isn't. It is an alternate jersey that the team will wear when they play England on June 30. As per the new rules, the hosts get to retain their jersey colour when they play an ICC event. Since India also have a blue jersey like England, there is a slight change in colour.” Ever since 1992, Team India has been known to don blue jerseys in the shorter formats of the game with slight modifications being made to the uniform every year ever since. Sure, blue is one of the more popular colours in the sporting fraternity but the Bleed Blue squad has established a sense of ownership to the colour with their brilliance on a cricketing field. Watching them play in a different shade will surely be an uncanny experience but hey, change is always good, right?
  6. India won the World Cup for the first time in 1983. It was a big moment for us and till date, Kapil Dev reminds us of the glorious days. Ranveer Singh's film '83 is based on the events surrounding the winning of the World Cup in 1983 and we couldn't be more excited. The unexpected victory in 1983 World Cup against West Indies was a major win for us back then. India hadn't hoped to bring the World Cup home this soon. Ranveer Singh with the '83 team are off to London for the film's shoot which is tentatively scheduled for three months. Ranveer takes special effort to get in the character for each film and for '83, he spent a couple of days at Kapil Dev's place to familiarise himself with the actual ongoings of 1983 World Cup. Directed by Kabir Khan, '83 will soon begin shooting. Keeping the team spirit alive, the cast reached the Mumbai airport on a team bus. Instagram is flooded with the reel team photos that makes us reminiscent of 1983 team. Take a look at the striking resemblance here. © Instagram 1. Look at the enthusiasm here. It's game time. ð #83SquadOnTheMove The journey begins. ð¥@RanveerOfficial @kabirkhankk #MadhuMantena #SajidNadiadwala @vishinduri @RelianceEnt @NGEMovies pic.twitter.com/4iulvt9AEx — '83 (@83thefilm) May 27, 2019 2. Look at Ranveer Singh looking like Kapil Dev here. View this post on Instagram About to embark on a remarkable cinematic journey ð #proud #blessed ðð½ @kabirkhankk @83thefilm A post shared by Ranveer Singh (@ranveersingh) on May 27, 2019 at 10:28pm PDT 3. The excitement is in the air. When you are playing the Lord of Lord's, you are always on your toes! Here's @adinathkothare's message before he embarks on this exciting journey. #83SquadOnTheMove @RanveerOfficial @kabirkhankk #MadhuMantena #SajidNadiadwala @vishinduri @RelianceEnt @NGEMovies pic.twitter.com/xyU3e3IYrv — '83 (@83thefilm) May 27, 2019 4. We honestly can't wait for '83. London chale hai, itihaas dohrane! â @Saqibsaleem aka Jimmy is all set with his red handkerchief! Watch this space for more updates. #83SquadOnTheMove @RanveerOfficial @kabirkhankk #MadhuMantena #SajidNadiadwala @vishinduri @RelianceEnt @NGEMovies pic.twitter.com/jkNBzlYnTK — '83 (@83thefilm) May 27, 2019 The film '83 is scheduled to hit the screens in April next year.
  7. The verdict is finally here, and the Indian citizens have finally declared their leader of choice for the next five years. Late last evening, as the nation broke into a collective celebration, especially the Bharatiya Janata Party's right-wing supporters who expressed their joy by distributing sweets and breaking into a dance on the streets, losing parties wondered how to soothe the pain that bothered them so. © Twitter And when we talk about losing parties, who stands as a better example than BJP's arch rivals and opposition, Congress. With less than 100 seats to itself, the Indian National Congress has found itself at a loss even this time, much like in 2014. However, amongst the winners from the party is one name who has been an active face of the Congress over the years. Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, who was contesting the 2019 Lok Sabha Elections from the Thiruvananthapuram constituency in Kerala. Final results show that he has won from his constituency with over 40 per cent votes ahead of BJP's Kummanam Rajasekharan who bagged just over 30 per cent votes for himself. © Twitter However, this win hasn't pleased the wordsmith politician, who admitted that he feels like a batsman who has scored a century while his team has lost. He made this comment late last afternoon when it was gradually becoming more and more obvious that PM Modi-led BJP would come back to power with majority. As my lead nears 50,000 with 72% counted, i feel like a batsman who has scored a century while his team has lost! It's a bittersweet emotion I will take some time to reflect on. #TharoorForTvm — Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) May 23, 2019 We can totally understand that bittersweet feeling Mr. Tharoor but regardless of the bigger verdict, congratulations on the hatrick win you have scored!
  8. With the ICC World Cup 2019 less than 10 days, Virat Kohli and the rest of the Men in Blue have finally left for England, where they will be participating in a couple of warm-up matches against New Zealand and Bangladesh on 25th and 28th May, before officially beginning their World Cup 2019 journey with their first game against South Africa on 5th June 2019. The team was, however, spotted at the Mumbai airport lounge hours before boarding their flight. A couple of photos of the members of Team India in the BCCI uniform made their way to the internet and instantly went viral for all the right reasons. Jet set to go ââ#CWC19 #TeamIndia pic.twitter.com/k4V9UC0Zao — BCCI (@BCCI) May 21, 2019 In the images uploaded by the official Twitter account of the Board of Control for Cricket in Indian (BCCI), some of the most talented athletes of the roster can be seen putting their time to good use and indulging in a couple of games of PUBG Mobile, the hit Battle Royale game that has taken the Indian market by storm ever since it was launched a year and a half ago. Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and even the team veteran, Mahendra Singh Dhoni were caught squading up against the rest of the world in the streets of Erangel. Twitter went crazy when they spotted their favourite sportsmen playing their favourite mobile game: Good Luck Team India ð®ð³ Play quality cricket & make us proud.#WorldCup2019 & once you are back, why not go for PUBG Championship. I mean we have a squad in our cricket team. Mr MS Dhoni, Shami, Bhuvi and Chahal. That is a great squad already. What say? @BCCI @PUBGMOBILE pic.twitter.com/klmHtrfIea — Saleem Rehan (@rehanode) May 22, 2019 Before # WORLD CUP, Another world cup (PUBG) is going on . #BEST OF LUCK TEAM INDIA pic.twitter.com/5QPkFqm4uu — VIJAY KATARIA (@vijayjssate111) May 22, 2019 All The Best Team Indiað®ð³!! Btw @yuzi_chahal and Mahi can you tell us your PUBG acc nameðð?! pic.twitter.com/kBwwXOfHin — ajinkya ambatwar (@AmbatwarAjinkya) May 22, 2019 Yeh sab PUBG wale h kya??? Chak de India!!! Hope the team gets the cup back.#CWC19 #TeamIndia https://t.co/2JDGPvDUq0 — Ashutosh Kumar (@ashuak1225) May 22, 2019 Looks like PubG fever has caught up with Team India ðall the best for #CWC19 https://t.co/fhYcrrCICi — Tejus S (@tejussgame) May 22, 2019 Caption cool pubg khel rhe hai All the best Team India Is bar ka WC caption cool ke nam — Darshan Lad (@DarshanLad2) May 22, 2019 Other than the Battle Royale fanatics, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Dinesh Karthik, Rohit Sharma, Vijay Shankar, Kedar Jadhav, KL Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan were also spotted in the images. The Vice-captain of the roster, Rohit Sharma also uploaded a shot with Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav and Kedar Kadhav: Jet set World Cup âï¸ ððpic.twitter.com/K6FNvxxmbs — Rohit Sharma (@ImRo45) May 21, 2019
  9. The newest team that will have the honour of playing against some of the greatest names in the world of cricket such as Virat Kohli, Chris Gayle, Eoin Morgan and others, Afghanistan could take the ICC World Cup 2019 by storm this June. For a squad that recorded their first Test win in just their second game, albeit against Ireland, the Afghan side is full of surprises and can not be overlooked by any of the favourites, if they wish to bring home that title with them. The Afghanistan Cricket Board did create shockwaves internationally by sacking captain Asghar Afghan a month before the World Cup, with Gulbadin Naib taking the high chair. Prior to becoming the leader of the team, Naib struggled to find himself a spot in the roster. What makes his appointment a lot more interesting is the kind of comparisons that were made between Naib and Karim Janat, the younger brother of the former skipper, and he is now no more than a reserve for the final Afghan squad. A few logical reasons that come out of giving Naib the highly prestigious spot in the team are the bowling conditions of the English pitches that are in favour of the 28-year-old medium-fast bowler and his fatal off-cutters. His ability to bat on almost any position down the batting order also adds to his resume. © Reuters A negative byproduct of appointing Naib as the skipper is the weak leadership quality at the top. Inexperienced in leading a senior team, the bowler is bound to face a little bit of turbulence, at least in the beginning, just like the 21-year-old Rashid Khan did, during Afghanistan's World Cup qualifiers against Zimbabwe. Even though Naib will lead the team to England and Wales, the World Cup journey of Afghanistan will major depend on Khan, who is currently the world No 1 ranked one-day allrounder according to ICC Player rankings. © Facebook/Rashid Khan 21-year-old Hazratullah Zazai aka “the Afghan Chris Gayle”, has also made a name for himself for hitting big shots in his short ODI career with the national team. A fine example of his explosiveness was witnessed by the cricketing fraternity in February when he smashed the second highest T20I total, hitting 16 sixes in a 162* run innings against Ireland. Having said that, the team's batting lineup is still a bit raw and highly volatile and in dire need of some balance. This is where Rahmat Shah steps in. A consistent batsman with the highest average in the roster in both ODI and Test formats of the game. While not a lot of people are expecting Team Afghanistan to win the World Cup championship this year, they are still more than capable of ruining the chances of winning for favourites like Virat Kohli's India or Eoin Morgan's England, especially in the 10-team format that quadrennial tournament is following this time over. Squad: Gulbadin Naib(c), Mohammad Shahzad(wk), Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Samiullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan and Mujeeb ur Rahman.
  10. The selector of the Pakistan Cricket Board have been extremely busy ever since they first announced their preliminary 15-man squad for the upcoming ICC World Cup 2019, to be held in England and Wales. While the team disclosed the tentative names of the players on 18th April 2019, a lot has changed within the roster, especially after the five-game ODI series that was held against the World Cup hosts, Team England. Just moments after the unfortunate news of Pakistani middle order batsman, Asif Ali's daughter's death due to cancer broke out, the PCB announced their final list of players who will be wearing the green jersey for the quadrennial contest on Monday. As compared to the list that was announced last month, the selectors have replaced Abid Ali with Asif Ali and Wahad Riaz has taken away the World Cup berth from Faheem Ashraf. While most of the changes were taken by the dropped and recalled players in good stride, one player in particular, lefty pacer Junaid Khan was not a big fan of the switcheroo that too place between Mohammad Amir and him. The 29-year-old therefore decided to show his protest towards the selectors of the Pakistan national team and the Pakistan board of the game by sharing a rather cryptic picture of himself from his social media accounts, which the athlete later removed: © Twitter/Junaid Khan "I dont want to say anything. Truth is bitter. (Sach karwa hotha hai)," Junaid wrote on a Twitter post along with the aforementioned picture of himself in which the cricketer can be seen wearing a black tape over his mouth. According to Inzamam-ul-Haq, Chairman of the selection committee of the PCB, the decision with regards to Junaid and the rest of the pacers was made after taking into consideration their poor bowling display in the 0-4 series loss to Eoin Morgan's English cricket team. "Junaid and Faheem (Ashraf) are dropped but that doesn't mean they are not good. But we think players like Amir and Wahab are more suitable for these conditions, which is why we have preferred them," Inzamam-ul-Haq said.
  11. PUBG Mobile, as we all know, has grown to become one of the most popular games around the world. The popular online battle royale title is being played by everyone, including our very own Indian cricketers. That's right, even our busy cricket players take some time off their busy schedule to play the game. We've even seen the players playing PUBG on their smartphones and tablets before departing for Australia for the full-fledged series in November 2018. As we wait for the departure announcement from Mumbai, some of them are playing a very popular multiplayer game. #TeamIndia Any guesses? pic.twitter.com/Y1n8AdHxhn — BCCI (@BCCI) October 30, 2018 While interacting with ESPNCricinfo, Indian cricketer Kuldeep Yadav revealed the best PUBG players in the Indian cricket team. He named former skipper MS Dhoni, Manish Pandey, Yuzvendra Chahal, and Kedar Jadhav as the best players of the game in the Indian team. We haven't really seen the Indian cricket team players all play PUBG together, but maybe that will happen during the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. PUBG has been something of an issue in India, with multiple bans across schools, colleges and sometimes, even cities. From students committing suicide after being told to not play the game to people being run over by trains as they were too distracted while playing the game, PUBG has been swimming in controversy in India for a long, long time. Recently, we even heard news of a married couple filing for divorce over the game. A lot of people feel the game is disruptive and extremely distracting, especially when it comes to students. However, students are of the belief that the game is an outlet for healthy creativity and has massive potential when it comes to the Indian gaming industry. Source: ESPNCricinfo
  12. Last week, Lionel Messi had strengthened his claim to this year's Ballon d'Or after a brilliant match-winning effort against Liverpool in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League semifinals. The Barcelona talisman found the back of the net on two occasions including a spectacular free-kick from outside the box. As Barcelona romped their way to a 3-0 first leg win, many had claimed that he looks destined to, not only power the Catalans into the final, but might just win them the title.' Despite Liverpool's might and sensational form this season, Barcelona, with their first leg win, had to play really bad to throw away their lead and crash of the tournament. And, sadly for the visiting fans, that's exactly what happened at the Anfield on 8th May. © Reuters In what is now being touted as one of the most sensational comebacks in the tournament's history, Jurgen Klopp's men, despite the absence of Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, produced a spirited performance to overcome the 0-3 deficit and romp their way into the Champions League final with a 4-3 (on aggregate) win over lacklustre Barcelona. Divock Origi and Georginio Wijnaldum both scored a brace as Barcelona failed miserably to contain the Reds in front of a packed and noisy home crowd. From Messi's minimal presence to major defending errors, Ernesto Valverde's side proved no match to clinical Liverpool and, for better of the game, looked like a bunch of school kids struggling to keep pace with a professional team. © Reuters If Barcelona bottling a 3-0 lead for the second successive season in the Champions League wasn't enough to irk their fans, the fact that their team bus left their talisman Messi behind at Anfield after their horror show, further made them the butt of all jokes on social media. Messi was forced to undergo a procedural doping test and the process took longer than usual. Owing to fatigue and mostly embarrassment from the defeat, the Barcelona team bus left the Argentine at Anfield and departed for the airport. While it wasn't intentional, but quite understandable why Messi was left behind, the football fans just couldn't pass up the opportunity to troll the Catalans on social media. Was Messi at Anfield tho? — Andrew Jason (@AndrewJason89) May 8, 2019 Negotiating with Jurgen for a place on the Liverpool Bench next season. — 4Paul (@1974paul) May 8, 2019 That's a lie messi didn't went to Anfield — Deva Guss Nation FPL ð¯ð² (@deva_guss) May 8, 2019 He's still trying to score an away goal. Bless him. — inthezone (@inthezoneuk) May 8, 2019 He was still in KFC — Racing Thoughts (@racingmusings) May 8, 2019 He's playing on Sunday v Wolves — Tommy Parle (@kmathiesond) May 8, 2019
  13. International coaches have been a part of the Indian Premier League (IPL) curricula ever since the inception of the league took place back in 2008 when teams like Chennai Super Kings (runners-up) and Rajasthan Royals (champions) were coached by foreign legends like Kepler Wessels and Shane Warne, respectively. However, the situation with regard to the ongoing IPL season seems to be a bit on the edge, especially with the ICC World Cup 2019 less than a month away. The fact that there eight IPL franchises this year and all of them are head-coached by international personnel, seems to be irking a lot of members of the management team of the Men in Blue. A simple scenario: Former Australian captain, Ricky Ponting is currently entrusted with the role of the head coach of the Delhi Capitals franchise. Within ten days of IPL getting over, Ponting will join the head coach of the Australian cricket team, Justin Langer, as an assistant coach as they fly over to the United Kingdom for the World Cup. © Reuters As integral members of DC's batting strategies, Ponting spends a good portion of the day with batsman Shikhar Dhawan, who will also open the Indian batting order come June when India begin their World Cup journey against South Africa. Observing Dhawan from such a vantage point for so long gives Ponting a good idea of the batsman's strengths and weaknesses, he knows which shots is he comfortable playing and which shots give him a tough time executing. It's clearly unhealthy. Rishabh, Prithvi, Shreyas — see the amount of analysis they're being able to gather,” says one of the members of the management team for India, as reported by the Times of India. View this post on Instagram Ready for the opening blitz! ð¥ Batsmen roar machaane ke liye hai taiyyar! Aa jao neela pehen ke, chillao DC DC ðª #ThisIsNewDelhi #DelhiCapitals #DCvKXIP #IPL #IPL2019 A post shared by Delhi Capitals (@delhicapitals) on Apr 20, 2019 at 5:16am PDT “We don't think it's fine for Australia's national assistant coach (Ponting) to be spending time with the Indian team opener just weeks ahead of a World Cup campaign, or even otherwise with a franchise that includes India's four Test cricketers. Of course, the IPL's a free market but some lines have to be drawn.” Now the question is whether there is some gravity to such beliefs or is it the result of sheer paranoia. International coaches have been a part of IPL for the past 12 years. Since then, we have had a couple of World Cups too, out of which India even won the trophy once in 2011. Will Ponting's work with Dhawan brings him some added advantage over Ravi Shatri and the rest of the Indian cricket team, I guess we'll just have to wait and watch.
  14. The idea of motorsports is just a cog in the wheel of India's mass opinion. We consider it a largely elitist hobby that is only affordable for a privileged few, despite being among the world's largest automobile manufacturers. Maybe that's why the country has barely contributed to the global motorsport scene, both in terms of producing world-class race drivers as well as racing technology. Part of the Mahindra & Mahindra automobile conglomerate, Mahindra Racing is out to change the latter, and eventually, influence the former. First things first; Mahindra Racing is the only Indian team (and one of the founder teams) in the Formula E Championship, a quickly growing class of international motorsport that uses only electric cars. It has already garnered a sixth of the total viewership of the Formula 1 around halfway into the fifth season of its existence. A total of 11 teams are contesting for the team championship with two drivers representing each outfit in the 2019 edition. Click here for Formula E rules, points system and more Mahindra Racing had finished on the podium (at third) a couple of seasons ago, followed by a close fourth last year. This season, they were at a healthy third as I arrived in Paris on the eve of the ePrix on Saturday. Jérôme d'Ambrosio of Belgium, who drives the #64 for MR led the driver's standings by one point. “The fundamental line that we use in Formula E is,” Mahindra Racing Team Principle Dilbagh Gill tells me on the sidelines of the race track, “you don't go to the race, the race comes to you.” Dilbagh has had a more than a decade-long journey with Mahindra and comes on the back of a colourful CV with various international projects. He speaks with fervour about being an international pioneer in this field and you might recognise him from passionate mid-race garage visuals. © Mahindra Racing Naysayers were sceptical about the no-sound 'disadvantage' of these cars, the 'slow' speed of the race and the feasibility, he tells me. But Formula E has come a long way with 11 teams in contention this season, with the likes of Porsche and Mercedes said to be joining in from 2020. “It (Formula E) has become a genuine form of racing. It's no longer like Formula 1. This season, the seven races have had seven winners from seven different teams. And you still don't know who will win the eighth one,” he says. “Second part is if you see any traditional forms of motorsport, only males used to watch it. That is also changing, where it is becoming more family oriented. When the father, who is into motorsports and he brings his kid, he is actually having a conversation during the race with him, because they can speak to each other with the loud sounds of the Formula 1.” As a result, the female demographic has warmed up to the idea. “In F1, 80 per cent of the audience is male and 20 per cent is female. Here, it's 52 per cent male and 40 per cent female and 8-10% kids.” The renaissance of EVs in the 21st Century (electric cars held several performance records over internal combustion engine cars but fell behind in performance during the first decade of the 20th century, notable electric-only racing series have shown an upward trend in both cars and bike circuits. Apart from Formula E, there are the likes of the Jaguar I-Pace eTrophy, the World Rallycross Championship, the World Solar Challenge and the MotoE World Cup. In other racing events, electric vehicles are competing alongside combustion engine vehicles, for example in the Isle of Man TT and the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, and in some cases winning outright. In January 2017, a pure electric car participated in the Paris-Dakar Rally and completed the entire route of 9000 km through Argentina, Paraguay and Bolivia. The vehicle had been specially designed and built for the race. The car had a 250 kW engine (340 hp) and a 150 kWh battery. The battery consisted of several modules. Each module could be charged separately by a power cable to speed up the charging process. The obvious question here is that how does this global electrification impact India? “To a large extent, the user is millennial, says Dilbagh, “They are now delaying the decision to buy the first car. An Uber can pick you up from anywhere at the press of a button, so what's more convenient can be sought. That's why they are delaying those decisions. They are also getting conscious about the mobility coming from the electric and the conversation about sustainability.” With Mahindra Racing, he believes, new electric mobility technology also reaches the end-user quicker. “The transition from race-to-road is much higher and faster. What you see in the car today literally can be in a car within 18 months. While in a conventional model, it takes six years. We say that 2030 (with reference to India's Mission 2030 of going electric-heavy) is far away, but it is just 11 years away and in the next 11 years, Mahindra Racing will have 15 alterations in developing a new car (one race technology every Formula E season).” But where does that take us in terms of motorsport in India? Barring the maiden edition of the Formula 1 that took place in the then-newly inaugurated Buddha International Circuit in Noida, India has stayed away from the global motorsport map. Of course, due credit has to be given to Narain Karthikeyan and Karun Chandhok, but the impact has been hot and cold. Racers have not really lined up to participate in competitions like Indian Formula Manipal DJS Racing Indian National Rally Championship JK Tyre National Racing Championship SPCE Racing 4ZE Racing. “We just need a little bit more clarification in terms of regulations in India, because a lot of other drivers in the championship are still fighting the tax problems, they couldn't drive in Formula One. There is no clear directive yet, as to where does motorsport fall in terms of taxation,” says Dilbagh. Mahindra Racing is now aspiring to further its long-term goals by escalating driver education in India. They want to use the data from the race track and find a way to reach out to public transport and truck drivers in the country for better efficiency. Electric is the way forward after all. “There is a huge shift from three peddled and now going two to one peddle drive. While we talk of passenger cars also, if we can take some of this data and put it in commercial vehicle, you can increase the range by 15-20 percent by just using a peddle inside. At the end of the day you get more mileage and money. Mileage to money there is direct correlation.” I came to Paris with very little knowledge about e-racing but by the end of the weekend, there has been so much to take away despite a bittersweet race day for Mahindra Racing (where Jerome crashed and the team was unlucky to not start the race at the pole position). The beauty of Formula E lies in the fact that the eight race of the season saw its eighth winner, from the eighth distinct country. If we can find a way to channel the passion of the drivers, the ambitions of the manufacturers and the will of the powers-to-be, there could still be hope of saving the environment in a manner that is both simple and modern. © Mahindra Racing © Mahindra Racing
  15. Signed for a then-record transfer fee of 105 million euros, Paul Pogba's arrival at Old Trafford was expected to be pivotal in Manchester United's rise under former manager Jose Mourinho. But, his lack of discipline and regular run-ins with Mourinho made him the subject of immense criticism from pundits and fans alike. His World Cup-winning run with France in Russia gave his United career a second wing. And, after the sacking of Mourinho last December, Pogba was looked upon as the befitting leader who, having overcome his biggest nemesis in Mourinho, would take the Red Devils to places with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at the helm of affairs. But, sadly, that day is yet to come. The 26-year-old United talisman has netted 13 league goals (shockingly the best goalscoring season of his career) and registered nine assists in a season that has been marred by poor and inconsistent performances. However, to everyone's surprise, the Frenchman has been included in the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) Team of the Year. © Reuters Pogba is the only non-Liverpool or Manchester City player to have been included in the list. With Ederson finding his place between the sticks, Andy Robertson, Aymeric Laporte, Virgil Van Dijk and Alexander-Arnold Trent made up the back four. Bernardo Silva and Fernandinho partnered Pogba in the midfield. And, the likes of Sadio Mane, Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling forged the frontline. If the inclusion of Pogba shocked everyone, the fact that he was chosen ahead of Eden Hazard and Mohamed Salah further made the fans pull their hair. While Salah has scored 19 league goals and boasts of 10 assists, Hazard has netted 16 goals and has 13 assists to his name this season. Paul Pogba has been named in the PFA Premier League team of the year. In other news, Theresa May has won politician of the year, and Bran Stark has won the inaugural Not Being A Massive Starey Creep award. — Paddy Power (@paddypower) April 25, 2019 On the other hand, the timing of PFA's decision to include Pogba at the expense of someone like Hazard and Salah couldn't have been worse. Despite a poor run this season, when City was getting ready to visit Old Trafford for what was being looked upon as the game that could potentially decide the title race, the United loyalists still believed in Pogba to come good. But, the Frenchman, once again, came up short. © Reuters For someone who is often labelled as the best United player on the field, Pogba's performance came to fully represent the home side's ponderousness against the defending champions' sharpness. As United's stretched and limited backline defended manfully in the first half, they were coming under increasing pressure because their teammates in front weren't able to create the chances, with Pogba, in his role as the main creator, failing miserably to get the ball to Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford quick enough. While the City midfielders required just one touch to get the ball rolling up front, Pogba was taking four which hampered his team's chances. The United talisman was too often too casual with no perseverance and nerve the fans would've seen from great Sir Alex Ferguson sides of the past. And, early in the second half, when Bernardo Silva burst past a number of United midfielders, with Pogba notably left in his wake, the moment of brilliance from the Portuguese summed up the gulf in class between the two teams. As a United fan there's no way Paul Pogba should be in the PFA team of the year! 2 months playing well and a load of penalties isn't anywhere near decent. Embarrassing to be honest — Mark Goldbridge (@markgoldbridge) April 25, 2019 A 0-4 drubbing at the hands of Everton was followed by a 0-2 loss at home for United. And, Pogba's consistent failures on the field, not to mention his casual attitude, continues to prove Mourinho right, making everyone question whether he is the right character and a man worth building a team around. And, United legend Roy Keane couldn't have summed it up any better. © Reuters Going all guns blazing at the Frenchman, Keane minced no words while claiming: "I wouldn't believe a word he (Pogba) says, there's no meaning to it. If you're going to be a good team-mate you have to run back and defend. They said it was heated against Everton – I heard they threw their hair gel at each other". Paul Pogba in PFA team of the year. Seriously ? — Ian Darke (@IanDarke) April 24, 2019 "He's a talented boy, but we've seen him not sprinting back. He's a mature player who's won big trophies and I don't think he leads by example from what I see. I don't know what he's like on the training ground or when they travel. He mentions body language and pride but I don't see it. He's a really talented player but you need more than talent. The really top players make their team and their team-mates better. He doesn't do that. He plays for himself," Keane concluded.
  16. To quote one of the most questioned players to make it to the final Indian roster for the upcoming ICC World Cup 2019 in Dinesh Karthik, “There will always be someone who will miss out. That's the nature of the game…”, and surely enough, with the total number of slots at 15 and over 25 supremely talented players competing for them, it is bound to happen that some players would miss out on the opportunity to represent their country in the biggest cricketing tournament there is. One of the best (or worst?) examples of such a case is that of the 21-year-old wicket-keeper-batsman, Rishabh Pant, who missed out on the opportunity to a veteran like Karthik, who's considered to bring greater stability and consistency to the already talent-laden squad. On the other hand is the curious case of the 33-year-old Ambati Rayudu who initially was brought up to the team as a batting all-rounder who'd fit perfectly in the two-down spot for the Men in Blue. However, with his questionable bowling action being rejected by the International Cricket Council (ICC) and he batting form spiralling, the Guntur born had to be removed from the final team ahead of the World Cup. Unable to take the news like a good sportsman that he is, Rayudu took a sly shot at the selectors and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) by tweeting this: Just Ordered a new set of 3d glasses to watch the world cup ðð.. — Ambati Rayudu (@RayuduAmbati) April 16, 2019 Losing his spot to Vijay Shankar, who made his ODI debut just a couple of months ago in January, Rayudu said that he's just ordered a pair of 3-D glasses to watch the World Cup. This was in reference to team selector MSK Prasad, who'd called Shankar a three-dimensional player. Responding to the tweet in support was yet another Indian cricketer who was put on the spot by the ICC for an objectionable bowling action and had to revamp the very essential part of his game, Pragyan Ojha. Curious case of some Hyderabadi cricketers... been in a similar situation... understand the winkâð¼ https://t.co/zLtAQIMvYn — Pragyan Prayas Ojha (@pragyanojha) April 16, 2019 “Curious case of some Hyderabadi cricketers... been in a similar situation... understand the wink”, tweeted the former Indian cricketer. Taking his own example after having missed out on the opportunity to play for his country in the 2015 World Cup, Ojha pointed out that being dropped from the team ahead of crucial games is evident for “some Hyderabadi cricketers”. However, his dig at the selectors did not sit well with the fans of Indian cricket: Isn't that why u were supporting him the day before selections? I hAvE gRoWn Up WiTh HiM. Pot calling Kettle black. Instead of whining over selections & talking nonsense filth to divide fans, support the ones who are selected, doesn't matter from which part of India they are from — Saurabh (@imsgshinde2) April 16, 2019 Aur ye Pragyan behati Ganga me haath dhote huye. — Ghenchebaaz (@MVBisht) April 16, 2019 Don't bring state into play.... He was given enough opportunity to perform. Though feel bad for him, but the call was justified on the back of past performance. — Gareeb Joker (@badoombaa) April 16, 2019 You wer dropd frm d team whn ther wer better spinners in d country. If it's a case of Hyderabadi cricketer, thn Laxman and Azruddin wouldnt hav played around 100 tests. Skill matters bhai which many others hav more than u guys. Raydu doesn't deserve a place in India A team also. — dryogeshpatel (@dryogiap) April 17, 2019 Hey Mr. Ojha, don't pull cricket into regional colors! — à¤à¥à¤à¥à¤¦à¤¾à¤° Aciditic Indian ð®ð³ ð®ð³ (@Aciditic_Indian) April 16, 2019
  17. The most important aspect about any sport is its fans. They're the reason why the players, the staff and the coaches play the sport. They give the players the confidence to give their best on the field and whichever their favourite team is, they really love it. But sometimes, the actions of some mad fans not only bring disgrace to a person but also the team they support. Similar humiliation was witnessed by Juventus when over 140 of their fans were arrested for possessing dangerous objects right before the UEFA Champions League game between Ajax and Juventus in Amsterdam on Wednesday. The Italian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for the Interior, Matteo Salvini, claimed that 120 of those held were Juve supporters. "Around 120 were detained," he said in a Facebook Live video. "People were found carrying objects that were not exactly appropriate for a trip to the stadium,” he added. © Reuters "Football is a beautiful sport but only with clean hands and a clean face, without creating trouble, so be good," he further said. As per reports, two separate groups were arrested by the authorities. First, a group of 46 were apprehended at a metro station and later another 61 were detained at the Johan Cruyff Arena. On the other hand, dozens of Ajax supporters were also reported to have clashed against riot police in separate incidents outside the stadium and were dispersed using tear gas and water cannons. The arrested fans were taken to a detention centre by bus, as per 'De Telegraaf'. Despite the match ending in a 1-1 draw and Cristiano Rolando being the star for his side, this traumatizing incident certainly humiliated the visitors a lot.
  18. Hardik Pandya might have courted controversy on his last TV show appearance. He may have deservedly attracted flak and, later, suspension from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for his comments. And, more recently, he might have been summoned by Indian cricket board's Ombudsman, Justice DK Jain, to be present for the hearings in relation to his controversial remarks about women. But, despite all that, hand this young lad a cricket bat and he'll show you what an absolute nightmare he can be for the opposition bowlers - something that's becoming more of a trend in the Indian Premier League (IPL) this season. The 25-year-old began this season with a forgettable duck against Delhi Capitals (DC) who eventually shocked the three-time IPL champions with a 37-run triumph. But, since then, there's been no looking back for Pandya. Twitter/@IPL He smashed a 14-ball 32 against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and, then, a 19-ball 31 against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP). But, he saved his best for Chennai Super Kings (CSK) who bore the brunt of Pandya's willow at the Wankhede stadium on 3rd April. Against RCB, Pandya's blitzkrieg allowed Mumbai to accelerate from an average-looking 145 after 16 overs to a competitive 187 after 20. And, at home against CSK, the swashbuckling right-hander, once again, got a meandering Mumbai innings out of a ditch with an absolute carnage of an innings. Coming out to bat in the 17th over, Hardik swapped places with elder brother Krunal and was looking to give more strike to settled Suryakumar Yadav. He couldn't score a run on his first delivery and then a single on the second got him off strike in the 18th over. But, after Yadav got dismissed on the last delivery of the over, the right-handed batsman knew it was time to unleash the beast. Twitter/@IPL He smashed Shardul Thakur for a towering six over square leg on the first delivery of the penultimate over and followed it up with a single. With Hardik off strike, Kieron Pollard could only manage seven runs off four deliveries including a six on the fifth ball. At 141/5, with just six deliveries to go, both Hardik and Pollard knew they needed to up the ante to help Mumbai post a competitive total. M15: MI vs CSK – Hardik Pandya Six https://t.co/GjfmMNB7va via @ipl — Dixit Bhargav (@dixitbhargav09) April 3, 2019 While Pollard smashed a six on the third delivery (a no-ball) and ran three runs on the legitimate ball (a free-hit), Hardik went hammer and tongs at Dwayne Bravo on the last three balls of the final over. He helicoptered Bravo's yorker into the top tier - something MS Dhoni would have also enjoyed - on the fourth delivery. Then, he punched a drive through extra cover for a boundary. And, finally, slashing a fuller delivery over third man to finish with a six. MUST WATCH: The Pollard-Pandya last over carnage ð®ð® Full video here â¶ï¸https://t.co/7kgiaB3Nsc #MIvCSK pic.twitter.com/pLdU2pyRID — IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 3, 2019 A staggering 29 runs came off Bravo's final over wherein Hardik was responsible for 17, Pollard scored 10 and two came as extras. From reeling at 119/4 in 17 overs, Mumbai romped their way to 170/5 - thanks to a slambang 8-ball 25 from Hardik and 7-ball 17 from Pollard. In 37 innings since the 2017 edition of the IPL, Hardik has come in to bat with roughly 26 balls remaining in the innings, which is extremely low for a hitter of his ability in a T20 game. While that may raise questions on Mumbai's decision to keep him much down the batting order, it undoubtedly highlights what kind of an influence, in just a few deliveries, this young bloke can have on a game - something Team India would need in the all-important ICC World Cup, slated to begin from 30th May.
  19. One of the greatest batsmen to have ever represented the Men in Blue, Rahul Dravid has fulfilled his duties as the coach of the junior Indian cricket team and helped them experience the level of success that not even the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) would have seen coming their way. It was under the leadership of Mr Dependable himself, that Team India A was able to completely dismantle the visiting England Lions for a five-match one-day series and not to forget the 2018 World Cup victory by the Under-19 squad captained by Shubhman Gill along with the 2018 Asia cup championship. It was therefore rather obvious to have Dravid become a major part of the revamping of the National Cricket Academy (NCA), a Bengaluru-based facility that will ensure state of the art technology and other provisions to contribute even more towards the betterment of the future of cricket in India. "Rahul has been handling junior cricket for a while now and the results have been phenomenal. It's only natural that he had to get involved with affairs at the NCA (in the present position). Now, he's determined to bring about a complete turnaround at the academy. With the kind of vision he has, it's already a given now that this is his role until he decides to stay,” Times of India quoted an informed official. Dravid will be entrusted with the role of building the entire academy from scratch while hiring the entire coaching team from all around the country. “For all practical purposes, NCA will now be Rahul's baby,” said another official. His vision has already started to make some significant changes to the pre-established rules. For instance, back in the day, 15 out of 20 people were selected to go further for the training camp, the other five would have been asked to go home, leaving behind their dreams. Dravid, however, has made it clear that all 20 athletes will remain with the academy throughout the camp. While a lot of people had hoped that the BCCI would have selected 'The Wall' as the leader of the main Indian cricket roster instead of Ravi Shastri, this may turn out to be a blessing in disguise for the future Indian athletes, having being taught under the wings of the very best at an early stage. With a rock solid base to build their cricketing career upon, Dravid's NCA might as well be the place where dreams are transformed into reality.
  20. A couple of days ago, we decided to ask you to choose from a set of 22 cricketers who essentially belonged to different eras of the Indian cricket team. These name ranged from the timeless leg-spinner Anil Kumble to the fearless bowling all rounder Hardik Pandya with the obvious legends of the game like Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli being in the mix as well. We gave two options for every spot in the squad and here are the results: Opener #1: Virender Sehwag vs Rohit Sharma In the 251 ODIs played by Viru, he has batted with an average of 35.06 with a fairly decent strike rate of 104.34 while scoring a total of 8273 runs. When compared to Sehwag, the current opener for the Men in Blue has played in 206 ODIs with an average a lot higher that Sehwag (47.4) but a relatively low strike rate of just 87.95 and 8010 runs till now. © MensXP 65% chose Virender Sehwag over Rohit Sharma Opener #2: Sourav Ganguly vs Gautam Gambhir The decision to choose between Sourav Ganguly and Gautam Gambhir was a lot more difficult than that between Sehwag and Sharma. Albeit, Gambhir played in less than half the ODI games played by Dada, but his ability to stick to the crease and score big runs at the time of the need made him an appropriate alternative option to Ganguly. © MensXP 53% chose Gautam Gambhir over Sourav Ganguly God of Cricket (One Down): Sachin Tendulkar vs Virat Kohli The contest for the position of the third batsman in the lineup had to be an obvious one. Probably the most talented players to choose from, Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli were made to up against each other with an additional honour of being called the 'God of Cricket'. 65% chose Sachin Tendulkar over Virat Kohli © MensXP All Rounder #1: Yuvraj Singh vs Yusuf Pathan Two huge hitters with enough skills as bowlers to fool their opponents to give up their wickets, Yuvraj Singh and Yusuf Pathan were booked for the fourth place on the dream team. © MensXP 89% chose Yuvraj Singh over Yusuf Pathan All Rounder #2: Hardik Pandya vs Irfan Pathan While the spot for the all rounder position between Yuvi and Yusuf were decided keeping in mind their abilities as spinners, this spot would have gone to the pacer from either Hardik Pandya or Irfan Pathan, both of whom were instant run-machines and could have easily hit the deliveries out of the park. © MensXP 55% chose Hardik Pandya over Irfan Pathan Wicket-Keeper: MS Dhoni vs Rahul Dravid If the selection between MS Dhoni and Rahul Dravid had to be done solely on the basis of their batting skills, it would have been a tough one. However, as a wicket-keeper, Ranchi-born MS Dhoni has been on another level throughout his international career and easily took the spot in the dream team. © MensXP 91% chose MS Dhoni over Rahul Dravid Off Spinner: R. Ashwin vs Harbhajan Singh Two of the greatest off spinners of different times, it was only fitting for one to choose between R. Ashwin and Harbhajan Singh for this category. In fact, it has widely been accepted as a fact that Ashwin was the one to take Bhajji's spot in Team India. © MensXP 58% chose R. Ashwin over Harbhajan Singh Leg Spinner: Yuzvendra Chahal vs Anil Kumble Chahal has proven his worth as a leggie in the recent games against Australia and New Zealand but needs to cover a lot of distance in order to take over the man who took all ten wickets in a single innings. © MensXP 69% chose Anil Kumble over Yuzvendra Chahal Fast Bowler #1: Jasprit Bumrah vs Zaheer Khan The choice between Jasprit Bumrah and Zaheer Khan was the most difficult to make according to the stats. While the former is the best bowler in the world in ODI rankings, the latter was known to have got Team India out of trouble on a number of occasions, the 2011 ICC World Cup being one of them. © MensXP 52% chose Jasprit Bumrah over Zaheer Khan Fast Bowler #2: Ashish Nehra vs Mohammed Shami The similarities between Nehra and Shami are uncanny. Both struggled to make big careers in the first stint with the Indian cricket team, suffered horrible form and made a comeback to international cricket after a year to take the entire world by storm. © MensXP 57% chose Ashish Nehra over Mohammed Shami Fast Bowler #3: Ishant Sharma vs Javagal Shrinath While it is a fact that Ishant Sharma is considered to be a 'rhythm' bowler, he is still one of the scariest bowlers to have participated in international cricket from the Indian side. Srinath, on the other hand, has been considered to be one of India's finest fast bowlers who also holds the record of being the first Indian bowler to have bagged 300+ wickets. © MensXP 65% chose Ishant Sharma over Javagal Shrinath Coach: Ravi Shastri vs Gary Kirsten At the end, we also provided you with the option of choosing the ideal coach for your dream team and you could have chosen between the all-time great Gary Kristen and the current coach of the Men in Blue, Ravi Shastri because, why the hell not? © MensXP 61% chose Gary Kirsten over Ravi Shastri Final Dream Team squad: Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Sachin Tendulkar, Yuvraj Singh, Hardik Pandya, MS Dhoni, R. Ashwin, Anil Kumble, Jasprit Bumrah, Ashish Nehra, Ishant Sharma with Coach Gary Kirsten
  21. Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), a team which contains one of the best players in the world, but still couldn't win anything till now. Since the first edition of the Indian Premier League, RCB has been known for more of a one-man show and not a team effort, be it the squad of Anil Kumble, Daniel Vettori or now of Virat Kohli, there have always been one or two players who have played well while the rest of the team has struggled to find their form. With the trio of Ab De Villiers, Chris Gayle and Kohli coming together, many thought that this would surely bring them the trophy. But despite reaching the final twice in the presence of these icons, RCB could never manage to get their hands on the cup. © AP In the last season also, around 60 per cent runs were scored by Kohli and De Villiers, who despite scoring well for their team, couldn't get them past the finishing line. The same old story was repeated in yesterday's game where the men in red lost to the 'MI Paltans' only because no one else stood up for the team other than Kolhi and ABD. After Moeen Ali and Parthiv Patel failed to provide a stable start, Kohli came to the rescue of the team and scored a crucial 46 before getting caught on a well directed short ball by Jasprit Bumrah. Once he left, De Villiers took the charge, but the constant pressure of not getting out stopped him from playing his shots. Though he did manage to play the anchor innings of 67, he never got the support from the other end to wrap the game in their corner. © AP The only solution we can think of from this discussion, is that if RCB wants to get anywhere near the cup, then everyone in the team needs to start taking responsibility of their actions rather than putting the pressure on the main two to three players.
  22. While India is on a roll from one scientific invention to the other, we have some kids from IIT Madras stealing the show! Elon Musk's Hyperloop Technology concept took an amazing spin when a team from IIT Madras competed in the Hyperloop Pod competition held every year and reached the finals, making them the only Asian team to do so! © YourStory If you're wondering what Hyperloop Technology actually is, it's an advanced technique that could revolutionise travel in the future. The concept was developed by Elon Musk back in 2013 through his space exploration firm called 'SpaceX' and since then, many companies and firms have been working on strengthening this technology. When the competition was held this year, a student team from IIT Madras made it to the finals after they developed a prototype Hyperloop pod called 'Avishkar Hyperloop' that would take 25 minutes to travel from Chennai to Bengaluru. © YouTube The competition had 1500 teams from all over the world who were trying to create the fastest 'pod' or a travelling vessel for the entire concept. Their aim was quite specific to build the pod though. All they had to keep in mind was that their pod attained the maximum speed and correspondingly it had comparative deceleration. Other than that, the participants were allowed to go as crazy creatively as they pleased. As 'Avishakar Hyperloop' are amongst the top 21 finalists, they'd be visiting the 'SpaceX' facility in California in July 2019 to test their prototype in a more relatable environment aka the hyperloop tunnel. © YourStory The IIT team from Madras has managed to develop an achievable prototype that will in all probability be a success as well. Suyash Singh, the founder and the head of the project claims that the pod will be able to achieve 400 to 450 KMPH during the finals and we're super ecstatic about it. The team consisting of graduates and PhD scholars has decided to use a linear induction motor, while the system will be backed by a high-power battery pack. As for the deceleration part, the team is planning on using pneumatic brakes. The pod also runs on four wheels in a single race track and at the final demonstration, the team will have to make the pod run within a one-mile-long vacuumed Hyperloop tunnel. But before the finals, the team will be allowed to test run it to make any final refinements a week prior to the actual event. "Laying the foundation for an indigenously developed hyperloop system for India will take a few years; only after that, will it be tested on the tracks. We believe the team has a long way to go and we expect the student team to be involved till the hyperloop competition is held." Ankit, the co-head of the project told a popular publication. © Facebook Team Avishkar Hyperloop Interestingly enough, all the other teams shortlisted for the finals are returning finalists, while India has made it in for the first time, without any other Asian country to compete with. The total budget for the Avishkar Hyperloop was Rs. 1 crore, which was mostly raised through crowdfunding, in-house funding and via tech companies. © Twitter Well, while we wonder if the world is really shrinking, we're really proud of team 'Avishkar Hyperloop' and we hope they do an astounding job in sunny California in July 2019.
  23. With the Indian Premier League (IPL) underway in full steam, we are bound to see many new-comers who will make a name for themselves and go on to earn laurels. Established youngsters such as Prithvi Shaw and Shubhman Gill, who are already in the limelight, can be the ones to replace the current Indian squad in the coming two to three years. These are the predicted top five youngsters who own the skills and determination to make it to the Indian team by the next World Cup, that is in 2023. 1. Prithvi Shaw (Delhi Capitals) © TOI The young Mumbai lad, Prithvi Shaw, is all set to make a comeback in the limelight of Indian Premier League under Delhi Capitals. Having a wonderful debut last year in the league, overshadowing Shreyas Iyer, Rishabh Pant and many other stars, Shaw definitely made a name for himself and got retained by the side during the 2019 IPL auction. Giving some prolific performances for the Indian Test side and that too at the age of just 18 is another proof of why he is referred to as the 'Next Master Blaster' of Indian cricket. Despite his worth still to be proven in limited overs cricket, he remains our top contender to make it to the Indian squad in the coming years, especially for ICC World Cup 2023. 2. Shreyas Iyer (Delhi Capitals) © Instagram The captain of the domestic as well as the IPL team of Delhi, Shreyas Iyer, is known to be the man of focus as this IPL season kicks off. Replacing Gautam Gambhir's leadership of Delhi Capitals since last year, Iyer has flowered as a captain and a better player too. From scoring in IPL to playing some great knocks for India A, the 24-year-old Mumbai lad has been in a prime form which if continues, will provide him with the great opportunity to support Virat Kohli by the World Cup 2023. 3. Shubhman Gill (Kolkata Knight Riders) © Instagram Soon after the arrival of Shaw, Shubman Gill became the next big thing to be talked about in the Indian cricket circuit. The 19-year-old batsman from Punjab is completely determined to achieve big things in international cricket and has continued to deliver consistently whenever the opportunity is provided. Ever since his phenomenal performance in the ICC U-19 World Cup 2018 in New Zealand, Shubman has been knocking at the door of the senior team. After being declared as the 'Player of the Tournament' during the2018 U-19 World Cup, he has been hailed by the experts as a player to watch out for. Getting an early entry into the Indian team and sharing the dressing room with big shots like Sunil Narine, Chris Lynn and Andre Russell for the Kolkata Knight Riders, Gill will definitely gain more knowledge of how to become a mature player. In the next few years, we will be seeing some major transformations in the youngster and we hope he goes on to break many records and might get us the 2023 World Cup too. 4. Mayank Agarwal (Kings XI Punjab) © Instagram “International cricket has made me calmer” was a statement given by Mayank Agarwal in an interview to Hindustan Times on Sunday. Having scored 2141 runs for the domestic team of Karnataka in the 2017-18 season and 3472 runs in 70 India-A matches, Agarwal's long wait of getting into the Indian team ended in December last year. Called to Australia as a replacement for Rohit Sharma, the 28-year-old was finally selected for the Boxing Day Test at the MCG, where he responded with a brilliant 76, the highest score by an Indian debutant in Australia, and a 42 in the second innings. Now, making a comeback after his thumb injury for Kings XI Punjab, he seems all set to show the entire world what he is made of. Regardless of all the difficulties and drawbacks that he has had, we would still opt him as our favourite to showcase in World Cup 2023. 5. Mayank Markande (Mumbai Indians) © Instagram 21-year-old Mayank Markande, recently added an achievement to his resume as he received his maiden call-up for the India T20I squad against Australia. Playing for Mumbai Indians and sharing the dressing room with legends like Sachin Tendulkar and Mahela Jayawardene, will surely be helpful to the young leggie. Keeping World Cup 2023 in mind, it will be interesting to see how young Markande fills the shoes of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal.
  24. More often than not, the busy travelling schedule of the members of the Indian cricket team does not allow the Men in Blue to stay at home during major festivals, surrounded by their loved ones, their friends and family. A couple of years ago, the captain of the Indian side, Virat Kohli, while sending his wishes for the festival of colours in 2017, he said that his Holi would be spent on the road as the roster was going to Patna for a series. Happy Holi everybody. Have a great day today ðð¼ð. Please make sure no harm is done to the animals on the streets. God Bless all. pic.twitter.com/3a3NbUib0a — Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) March 13, 2017 Holi 2019, however, could not have come at a better time. There was a small gap between the tiring ODI series against the visiting and the twelfth season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) and the festival fell on such a day that all the cricketers of the Indian squad were at home, happily celebrating the festival of 'good over evil' with their loved ones. "Happy Holi to everyone! Let's celebrate the vibrant hues, the beautiful relationships and the joyous laughter," Virat Kohli wrote in a Tweet. Shikhar Dhawan, who is currently in India preparing for the IPL, shared an emotional post on Instagram. While celebrating the festival with his mother, 'Gabbar' expressed his joy of watching his kids get in on the fun, thousands of miles away, in Australia. View this post on Instagram My festivals brighten up a little extra thanks to these colourful memories. Missing my munchkins a lot! Happy holi from our family to yours. ð #HappyHoli #HoliCelebrations A post shared by Shikhar Dhawan (@shikhardofficial) on Mar 21, 2019 at 1:19am PDT “My festivals brighten up a little extra thanks to these colourful memories. Missing my munchkins a lot,” said the Delhi Capitals skipper. “Happy holi from our family to yours.” Mayank Agarwal, another athlete who had a great start to his international cricketing career in the first days of 2019 in his debut against the Australians on their home-turf, also shared a vibrant photo from yesterday's celebration: Here's wishing everyone a Happy Holi! May you have a colourful year ahead!#HappyHoli pic.twitter.com/S3HLk5cf3u — Mayank Agarwal (@mayankcricket) March 21, 2019 Some of the major franchises of the IPL too sent their best wishes to the world on the joyous occasion: Yeh din hai rangon ka, yeh din hai khushiyon ka! #HappyHoli, Royals family! #HallaBol pic.twitter.com/TCY6oUExkt — Rajasthan Royals (@rajasthanroyals) March 21, 2019 Bina Gabbar ke Holi bhi koi Holi hai? ð#HappyHoli #ThisIsNewDelhi #DelhiCapitals pic.twitter.com/EewQPoc51G — Delhi Capitals (@DelhiCapitals) March 21, 2019 Saareyan nu Holi diyan lakh lakh vadaiyaan. ð¨ Here's wishing everyone a very #HappyHoli from the KXIP family. ♥#SaddaPunjab pic.twitter.com/6pPAx5yAcm — Kings XI Punjab (@lionsdenkxip) March 21, 2019 Let the colour for this Holi be ð!#HappyHoli and have a safe one!#KKRHaiTaiyaar pic.twitter.com/CwbsBwmevG — KolkataKnightRiders (@KKRiders) March 21, 2019
  25. On A Friday afternoon, when the Bangladesh cricket team were about to get off the team bus to enter the Masjid Al Noor mosque to offer their prayers, in the New Zealand city of Christchurch, they heard gunshots being fired in the vicinity. Nervous for the safety of their lives the helpless athletes “just escaped” the venue, with a clue of what was going on around them. ESPN Bangladesh's correspondent Mohammad Isam was later interviewed by The NZ Herald in which the journalist described what was going on inside the visiting cricket team's bus: “They [Team Bangladesh] were just outside the mosque about to get off from the bus and go into the mosque when they heard shooting and a lot of people running out and they saw someone wounded in front of them.” “And seeing that, they didn't get off the bus. About 10 minutes later they ran out of the bus and ran through Hagley Park and into the Hagley Oval.” Batsman Tamim Iqbal, who opens the batting order for the squad described the horrific incident in a tweet he put out after fleeing from the site. Entire team got saved from active shooters!!! Frightening experience and please keep us in your prayers #christchurchMosqueAttack — Tamim Iqbal Khan (@TamimOfficial28) March 15, 2019 According to The Guardian, multiple casualties have been reported in the nearest police station of Christchurch while four suspects (3 men, 1 woman) have been apprehended with ammunition in their possession and explosives attached to their vehicles. Former Bangladeshi skipper, Mushfiqur Rahim, too thanked their stars for being able to get away from the attack unscathed. Alhamdulillah Allah save us today while shooting in Christchurch in the mosque...we r extremely lucky...never want to see this things happen again....pray for us — Mushfiqur Rahim (@mushfiqur15) March 15, 2019 New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern too expressed her anger towards the “unprecedented violence” while comforting the members of their migrant communities and ensuring that the country will always be their home. What has happened in Christchurch is an extraordinary act of unprecedented violence. It has no place in New Zealand. Many of those affected will be members of our migrant communities – New Zealand is their home – they are us. — Jacinda Ardern (@jacindaardern) March 15, 2019 The Bangladesh cricket team were touring New Zealand since February having lost the ODI series 3-0 and the Test series 2-0. They were in Christchurch for the third and final Test match, which has now been cancelled. The Black Caps too offered their condolences for the shooting: Our heartfelt condolences go out to the families and friends of those affected by the shocking situation in Christchurch. A joint decision between NZC and the @BCBtigers has been made to cancel the Hagley Oval Test. Again both teams and support staff groups are safe. — BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) March 15, 2019
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