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Saturday, 25 March 2017

Virat Kohli Ruled Out Of Final Test in Dharamsala

Sanjar Bangar, India's batting coach, has just confirmed that Virat Kohli isn't fit enough to play today. A real anti-climactic start.
Ajinkya Rahane has been handed over the reins for the all-important clash. And more importantly Kuldeep Yadav has been handed over his maiden Test cap. Surprise surprise Adds some more mystery to the jig-saw puzzle. Five bowlers, three spinners. By the looks of it going in..
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Dharamsala Test Pitch Report

"The wicket looks beautiful. A nice tinge of grass but there is also some dryness near the good length spot for batsmen. But for the first two days it is going to be a beauty for batsmen,"
reckons VVS Laxman in his pitch report. "Doesn't matter where we play in India, you always win the toss and bat first." Brett Lee nods along in approval. He expects it to stay low as well. Surely he wouldn't mind running in for a burst with the mountains in the backdrop.
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Victoria are aiming for their third consecutive Sheffield Shield title

Sheffield Shield 2016-17

Final: Victoria vs South Australia Played at Traeger Park, Alice Springs 26,27,28,29,30 March 2017 (5-day match)

South Australia (From): Travis Head(c), Alex Carey(w), Thomas Andrews, Tom Cooper, Callum Ferguson, Jake Lehmann, Joe Mennie, Kane Richardson, Jake Weatherald, Daniel Worrall, Adam Zampa, Chadd Sayers, Johnathon Dalton.

Victoria (From): Cameron White(c), Seb Gotch(w), Fawad Ahmed, Scott Boland, Daniel Christian, Travis Dean, Aaron Finch, Marcus Harris, Jon Holland, James Lee Pattinson, Chris Tremain, Rob Quiney.

Match Live on 10:30 local and 01:00 GMT and 06:30 IST
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Steven Smith is third visiting captain to score three centuries in a series in India

50.4 over for Kuldeep Yadav to Smith, FOUR, another 100 for Smith. His 7th against India. 3rd in the series. Got 4 in Australia when India last toured there. Averages over 90 against India in 10 Tests. He is the modern day equivalent of the Sir Don. Scary numbers. And for the uninitiated he came into the Aussie side as a leggie who could bat a bit. Was made fun of for his shuffle and his weird movements at the batting crease. And now look at him. The number 1 batsman in the world. Shows what dogged persistence and determination can do. Steven Smith is the perfect example of what one can achieve by working hard and trusting in one's abilities. Looks to be batting on another level compared to everyone else in world cricket at the moment. At home or away. Seems to be in a zone of his own. That's why is averaging over 60. A phenomenal feat.
Coming to how he got to his 100: Was a poor delivery, drifting down leg and all it needed was a tickle, which Smith provided with a glance. The ball raced away. Smith had his helmet off and was seen raising the bat to the crowd. Amidst all the wickets which have fallen at the other end, he has stood tall like a colossus. Now has 20 Test hundreds in 54 Tests. And also joins a select band of folks who have made three hundreds in India. I'm sure Deepu - our statsman will have more on that. He will be up with the stat in a flash. And on replays I see Smith do three swings of the arms to someone! Not sure what that was. Till he is there at the crease, India won't feel safe.
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Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Six classic Australia Test series deciders

Australia vs India at SCG on 2004 - India pulled off a memorable victory in Adelaide.
England vs Australia at The Oval on 2005 - An iconic photograph after the 2005 Edgbaston Test.
Australia vs India at Nagpur on 2008 - India get their hands back on the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
England vs Australia at The Oval on 2009 - England celebrate the final wicket of the 2009 Ashes series.
Australia vs South Africa at WACA Ground on 2012 - Steyn rocked Australia's batting order at the WACA Ground.
South Africa vs Australia at Newlands on 2014 - Shaun Marsh and Steve Smith scored impressive hundreds in Centurion.
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Left-arm spinner Tom Andrews has been called up to South Australia's squad for the 2016-17 Sheffield Shield final

South Australia squad:

Travis Head (Captain)
Tom Andrews
Alex Carey (wk)
Tom Cooper
John Dalton
Callum Ferguson

Jake Lehmann
Joe Mennie
Kane Richardson
Chadd Sayers
Jake Weatherald
Daniel Worrall
Adam Zampa.
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Fawad Ahmed could play his second match of the 2016-17 Sheffield Shield season in the tournament final

Victoria squad:

Travis Dean
Marcus Harris
Rob Quiney
Aaron Finch
Cameron White (capt)

Daniel Christian
Seb Gotch (wk)
James Pattinson
Chris Tremain
Scott Boland
Jon Holland
Fawad Ahmed.
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Our Sheffield Shield Team of the Season 2016-17

1) Ed Cowan (NSW Blues)
2) Joe Burns (Queensland)
3) Hilton Cartwright (Western Australia)
4) George Bailey (Tasmania)
5) Moises Henriques (NSW Blues, c)

6) Ashton Turner (Western Australia)
7) Peter Nevill (NSW Blues, wk)
8) Chris Tremain (Victoria)
9) Chadd Sayers (South Australia)
10) Jason Behrendorff (Western Australia)
11) Jon Holland (Victoria)
12th man: Jack Wildermuth (Queensland)
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Saturday, 18 March 2017

Pujara posts ton after Cummins double strike

Employing the template drafted by Steve Smith across the first day-and-a-half of this evenly-poised Test, India’s Cheteshwar Pujara cast himself as India’s batting mainstay as his team fashioned a patiently spirited response to Australia’s first innings. Just as Smith came in at the fall of the first wicket
and stood undaunted as the rest of them gradually fell around him, so too did Pujara on a day of attrition that finished with India 6-360 and 91 shy of their first innings target with two days to play. Pujara’s 11th Test century was typically measured in conditions that challenge the patience of both batters and bowlers, but it also revealed him as one of the few India batters to deal comfortably with the raw speed and aggression of Australia’s born-again fast bowler Pat Cummins.
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Ishant Sharma's funny sledging on Steve Smith of the Bengaluru Test against Austraia

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Cheteshwar Pujara was the only batsman who came out on top against Pat Cummins

Two players took all the honours on the third day in Ranchi - Cheteshwar Pujara and Pat Cummins. Pujara batted all day, stitched together useful partnerships with M Vijay, Ajinkya Rahane and
Karun Nair, and ensured that India remained in the game; Cummins bowled with pace and hostility all day, took three wickets off superbly directed short balls, and ensured that Australia still had a chance of taking a handy first-innings lead.
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Glenn Maxwell's score is the highest for an Australia No. 6 test batsman

80 Runs by Maxwell in Tests before this match, in six innings, with a highest score of 37. He has doubled his career
tally with unbeaten 82 in this innings. This is also his longest innings in international cricket. Maxwell's score is the highest for an Australia No. 6 since Smith's century in Centurion in February 2014.
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Smith and Maxwell is the highest fifth-wicket stand for Australia in India

159 batting The unbroken partnership between Smith and Maxwell - the highest fifth-wicket stand for Australia in India. The stand went past the 145-run effort by Michael Clarke
and Matthew Wade in Hyderabad on the 2012-13 tour. This is also the biggest partnership of the series, eclipsing the 118 runs added by Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara in the second Test.
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How many test hundred for Steven Smith

19 Centuries for Smith, the fourth-most by a batsman at completion of 5000 runs (end of the match). Bradman scored the most (21) and Hayden and Gavaskar made 20 each. Sachin Tendulkar and Neil Harvey had made 18 tons.
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