Second ashes test have concludd and what a game of cricket that was. It’s been a privilege to see two fascinating games one after the other in these ashes.
That’s why this series called ashes. In both test matches, momentum continued to shift throughout the match.
Credit must be given to the English conditions. England is a perfect place for test cricket. Both games ended in the fifth day shows how well the pitch is played. Although the rain factor was also be there in the second match.
Australia played outstandingly well in the first match. Especially their star Steve Smith played outstandingly well. He showed to world what he is capable of.
Smith single handedly took the score to over 280 and gave his side a chance. In the second innings he also batted superbly along with Mathew Wade who also scored a century.
English batsmen struggled in the first test and they cannot have a answer to the Aussies bowling.
In the second game, Enland struggle in their first innings but they bolted really well especially Broad and restricted Australia to 250. Smith again was a star of the show. He rescued his side and scored magnificent 92.
In the second innings, thanks to Ben Stokes England declared the innings on 258/5 and gave Australia target of 267. Australia managed to draw the test match.
Australia and England both are struggling in their batting. David Warners hasn’t get going in this series so far which is a worrying sign for Aussies.
England batting didn’t look a proper test batting lineup. Jason Roy hasn’t looked a test match player. They done a right thing to put Jofra Archer in their lineup for second match. He bowled really well and added an advantage to English side.
I think we must hope that similar sort of cricket in next three matches. Hope that Smith will let be fine for the 3rd match of the series.
This is the Australia’s best chance to win the ashes in last 10 years or so in England. So they have to deliver at their best and their it there batsmen must scores some runs especially Tim Paine because he is a captain of the side.
Finally we have some kind of cricket in CWC2019.
Unfortunately for Pakistan’s fans we couldn’t able to overcome Australia at Taunton Yesterday.
Pakistan made a fare call after winning the toss to bowl first. Because there was a chance of rain and D&L method could have come into play.
But Australia batted outstandingly well and their opener started to dominate the Pakistani bowling attack.
At one stage, it was looking like the target would go pass 350 mark easily.
But Pakistan came back well and they turned things into their favour.
Australia got bowl out on 307. David Warner scored a brilliant century; not as gast as he would like but a good innings indeed.
Star for Pakistan was Mohammad Aamir. He bowled really well at opening spell when Aussies were going really well.
His come back spell was also excellent when he took 4 more wickets to get fiver in the matc.
Imagine if he wasn’t selected for tournament, what could happened with Pakistani team.
Anyways, in reply Pakistan lost Fakhar early in a very soft dismissal.
Then Babar Azam and Imam went after the Australian bowling attack with some lovely strokes.
Babar Azam was just a treat to watch but when he was looking so good he threw his wicked away.
He was out on short pitch bowl which he shouldn’t hit like that.
Then Hafeez and Imam formed a great partnership and both batted very decently. Until Imam out by chasing wide delivery outside leg stump. He was overconfident and carelessly played that shot.
Aaron Finch took a surprise decision of introducing himself after the wicket. He got rewarded for that and Hafeez was a victim.
Hafeez didn’t able to hit a full toss inside the stands. He half hitter it and got caught in the deep.
Shoaib Malik looked psychologically unfit. His commitment wasn’t there. First he almost runout without facing a bowl and then he was caught behind.
Asif Ali was the third one to be out on short ball.
Then Hassan Ali came and he smashed 3 fours and 3 sixes within no time. He was out on short bowl too when he was looking good.
Sarfaraz should have told him to stay at the wicket.
After Hassan, Wahab Riaz came and he also batted really well and put Pakistan in a winning position.
Sarfaraz should faced Starc more at that time but he exposed Wahab to Starc and he edged it to the keeper. That was a close shout and umpire not have given that out. Finch reviewed after long thinking and got his man.
Aamir was bowled in the same over. Again Sarfaraz made a strange mistake by allowing Shaheen Afridi a single on last ball.
That cost Pakistan a match. Shaheen missed few deliveries and then by trying to take quick single Sarfaraz ran himself out.
Pakistan lost that match by 41 runs. Match was in our hand at one point of time but poor short selection suffered us a loss.
Shadab exclusion was a wrong decision. Shaheen should have come in place of Malik or Hassan but management thinked other way around.
Now next game is against India. We have to win that game to get things back on track for us.
We have to get team selection right. Malik is a big problem. He has some family problems but someone must talk to him to get out of that mental disstability.
Same it goes for Asif Ali. He suffered a big loss of his daughter. His fielding was also not upto the mark. In batting, he was also looking down and out.
Hassan Ali needs some tuning. He is not bowling well. He have to put up a performance. Management can also think to test Mohammad Hasnain but it could be a huge call to give him a go against India.
Team management have to do a lot of thinking and they must form a strategy to smash India.
India crushed Australia by 36 runs in their second match of CWC2019 at the Oval.
India decided to bat first after winning the toss. They started their innings very slowly but after ten overs they started to lift their scoring rate.
Both openers batted quite superbly and had a partnership of 127 runs.
After Rohit got out on 57, skipper Kohli came and he payed an outstanding innings.
Dhawan came back to form and scored a magnificent 117.
Kohli scored an outstanding innings of 82 to go with Pandya’s 48 runs.
Dhoni and Rahul’s late cameo helped India to score 352 in their 50 overs.
Australia came up to back with very defensive strategy. David Warner batted very slowly and he wasted a lot of balls.
Due to this pressure was created on middle order and Australian side needed more than 10 runs per over in their last 20 overs.
India bowled really well and bowling changes were also very good by their Captain.
In the end Australia had found the job too difficult and they all out on 316 in their 50 overs.
Alex Carey played a good innings of 53 but it was not enough for Aussies to pass Indian total.
Indian bowlers had bowled in right areas and didn’t give enough lose deliveries to the opponents.
Especially they bowled to Warner really tightly and didn’t give him width to smash the ball.
India executed their plans very well and they had the flexibility approach.
Overall it was a good match and a complete performance by Indian team
England beat Bangladesh quite easily by 106 runs.
England posted highest score of the tournament 386. Thanks to the innings of Jason Roy who scored a magnificent 153 runs.
England started off the innings slowly but then they have picked it up and went on to score just q4 short of 400.
Bangladesh bowling got hammered and no bowler have able to control the flow of runs.
Bangladesh in reply, all out on 280 in 49th over.
Shakib Ul Hassan scored a brilliant century but in vain. He looked good and he continued his good form.
Bangladesh need their best player to deliver in this World Cup and Shakib is doing so. But other players must take responsibility as well. Especially their openers have to perform now because they haven’t done much in this World Cup so far.
In the second match of the day New Zealand comprehensively beat Afghanistan by 7 wickets.
Afghanistan batted first and set a target of just 173 runs.
They stored their innings well and lost thier first wicket at 66 runs but next two wickets also gone down at 66. Then they couldn’t recover from there and all out on 172 in 41 overs.
James Neesham bowled brilliantly and picked up 5 wickets.
NZ lost their openers early thanks to the bowling of Aftab Alam.
But then Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor bring together a partnership of 89 runs which ensured NZ to pass the target easily. Taylor was out for 48 but skipper scored unbeaten 79 and guided his team to 3rd consecutive victory in the tournament.
Afghanistan batting was again a problem for them and there prime spinner Rashid Khan also got injured during batting and was unable to bowl.
Hope that he will be fine for next game but Afghanistan must concentrate on thier batting.
Day before yesterday we had a wash out match between Pakistan and Sri Lanka. That disappointed all fans especially those who came up in stadium to support their team.
We all knew the forecast of Bristol many days before. ICC didn’t deliver in this regard. They much have change the venue. Their performance was being very poor.
ICC have to take befit from science and should do proper research before deciding the venues for tournament like this.
Australia proved once again that how much mentally strong they are. They have taken the game from jaws of Westindian team.
Captaincy of Aaron Finch was also great during that match. On the other hand, Jason Holder didn’t do able to take wise decisions during that game.
Westindian won that toss and elected to bowl at Trent Bridge Nottingham where defending of a total is not easy.
Westindian bowlers have taken 4 Aussies wicket on just 38 runs and at that point of time it looked Australia would bowl out within 100.
But Jason Holder with no reason have put his strike bowlers out of attack and he used his average blowers to complete their quota of overs.
Steve Smith have batted with a purpose. He fought the difficult period and scored 73 which helped Australia to have something to bowl but the real star was Nathon Coulter-Nile.
He scored an outstanding 92 in just 60 balls and due to his innings Australia made 288.
In reply, Westindian team didn’t start well but Shai Hope’s cameo made their hopes alive.
Jason Holder also made 50 but turning point of match came when Australian skipper bring back his strike bowler Mitchell Starc in 46 over when Westindians were cruising . He made couple of strikes in that over by removing Holder and Braithwaite.
After that Westindian team have no clue what’s so ever and they managed to score 273 and Australia won by 15 runs.
Australia’s skipper done a right thing. He chinstrap wait till 48th over. He handed the ball to Starc who didn’t disappointed him. He took 5 wickets in the match including 3 wickets in his final spell.
From 38 for 4, Australia won that game. It was just superb. That’s why Australian team always on top in ICC rankings. They never give up. They love to fight till end and we have enormous examples of their brilliant come back.
Umpiring was just pathetic in that match. ICC must look at that thing as well.
ICC World Cup is in its full flow at the moment.
Exciting matches were played in last 2nd days.
First we talk about game between Sri Lanka and Afghanistan. Sri Lanka won that game by 34( D&L method).
Game was affected due to rain. Sri Lanka batted first after they were put in by Afghanistan. They started their innings very well. They lost their first wicket on 92.
They lost thiwrcsecond wicket on 144 but after that they bowled out on 201. Mohammad Nabi was a star for Afghanistan with the ball, grapsed 4 wickets including 34 wickets in 22nd over of the innings which broke Sri Lanka momentum.
Kusal Perera scored a magnificent 78. Rashid Khan and Dawlat Zadran have taken 2 wickets each.
Target was reversed due to rain and Afghanistan needed 187 in 41 overs.
But Afghanistan’s batters couldn’t able to bat well and bolted out on 152. Nuwan Pradeep took 4 wickets and Malinga took 3 wickets.
Afghanistan should have won that game easily but their batsmen again disappointed their fans. Their batting is a problem which need to be addressed quickly.
Yesterday, two matches were played. First match was a day fixture between South Africa and India.
South Africa won the toss and elected to bat. They started very badly and lost their openers on 24 runs.
They continued to lose wickets at regular intervals and posted 227 runs thanks to Chris Morris and A. Phehlukwayo’s batting in later part of innings.
Yuzvendra Chahal took 4 wickets and Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar have taken 2 wickets each. Indian bowling looked good during that match. No doubt India has a good bowling attack right now.
In reply India lost Dhawan and Kohli early but Rohit Sharma batted really well after having a chance. He involved in two brilliant partnerships with Rahul and Dhoni.
Sharma scored his 23rd ODI hundred and he remained not out and India chased the target in 48th over with 6 wickets in hand
Sharma showed his class and he finished the game by himself, which is a great lesson to be learn for any youngster.
South Africa lost 3 games in a row and now they are almost in a do or die situation. They have their injury problems as well.
In the second match of the day, New Zealand have beaten Bangladesh by 2 wickets in a tight game.
NZ won the toss and elected to bowl. Bangladesh all out in 50th over on 244 runs. Shakib Ul Hassan scored 64 on 68 balls with seven fours. Matt Henry took 4 wickets and Trent Boul took 2 wickets.
In reply, NZ lost their openers on 55. Then turning point of the match came when Mushfiqur Raheem missed the runout opportunity when the score was on 61.
But after that Williamson and Taylor put on 105 runs partnership.
Bangladesh never gave up and they continued to fight till end. They have taken 8 Kiwi wickets on 238 and made that match interesting but in the end NZ have chased the target courtesy Santner who made 17 important runs at number 8.
Bangladesh fought well and their fans must be proud on their team. If Mushfiqur Raheem didn’t miss that runout things could have been different.
Overall these 3 games had really oft the tournament’s tempo up and hope to see more exciting matches in upcoming days.
Unpredictability at it’s best. Pakistan pulled off a sensational win against England in their second match of WC2019.
Pakistan looked extremely good and positive in that game and they showed to the World that they can beat any team on their day.
England wanted to chase the target because of their strong batting line-up. They decided to bowl first after winning the toss. Mark Wood were included in place of Liam Plunkett just because to test Pakistani batsmen with short deliveries.
Pakistan’s openers started really well and they put on 80 runs partnership. They played the new ball quite well.
After that Babar Azam came to bat and he played his natural game and just batted very sensibily
The star performer with the bat was Mohammad Hafeez. Who smashed first bowl which he faced to the fence for four.
Hafeez had his chance when Jason Roy dropped him on 14 but after then he batted superbly. He made 84 from just 62 balls with 8 fours and 2
Sarfaraz Ahmad also played a very good innings. He made 55 on 44 balls.
Pakistan ended up with 348 for in their 50 overs giving England quite a stiff challenge.
Pakistan opened the bowling with Shadab to get England’s openers out early. He answered to the call and got the wicket of Jason Roy.
Aamir bowled very well in his first a spell but Babar dropped Joe Root on his bowling.
Pakistan have taken 4 English wickets when their score was 118. Malik and Hafeez used as a fifth bowling option and both grasped one wicket each.
Jos Buttler together with Root formed a parternership and smashed Pakistani blowers to all parts. Both got out after making their 100s.
In depth overs, Pakistani bowlers bowled really well especially Aamir and Wahab. They mixed it up and didn’t gave much to English batsmen to free their arms.
Pakistan have won that game by 14 runs and surprised the whole World.
Wahab was little expensive but he took 3 important wickets. Aamir and Shadab have taken 2 wickets each.
This was the most exciting game of the tournament so far. 2 hundreds being made and this was the first time in history of World Cup that the team who have two centuries in its side lost the game.
Michael Vaughan who one day before said that England would win easily but he said during lunch break that he was nervous because another Pakistan had arrived.
So, unpredictability of Pakistan is now become the debate of the tournament. Pakistan must not lose their for now and they have to play positive cricket in upcoming matches. They must now consistent enough to be among favourites to lift the trophy.
Finally we have one exciting match in this tournament.
Bangladesh just outclassed South Africa in all departments. They clinched their respective second victory against them in World Cups.
Bangladesh started the match with a very positive intend and they didn’t lose the grip at any stage on that game.
South Africa surprisingly decided to bowl first at good batting track. They felt that wicket had something for blowers but they were wrong.
Bangladesh right from the start batted with a purpose. Someya Sarkar played a good innings but the real face of that innings was the partnership between two veterans Mushfiqur Raheem and Shakib Ul Hassan.
Both played a blinder and built the innings quite superbly. At the end Mahmudullah finished the innings in style with well made 46.
Bangladesh put up this review highest total of One days. South Africa had few problems in the bowling.
Ngidi injured after bowling 4 overs. This hurt protease very badly as they leaked too many runs in final overs.
South Africa have to open with Makaram as Hashim Amla wasn’t available for that match. South Africa tried hard to build partnerships but they lost wickets at crucial intervals.
Mustafizur Rahman, Safi ud din and Mehdi Hassan bowled very well and they took 3, 2 and 1 wicket respectively.
South Africa managed to score 309 in their 50 overs by losing 8 wickets and they lost their second match of tournament by 21runs.
This is a great victory for Bangal tigers as they have now every chance to qualify for semis.
South Africa have to get their house in order. They have injury problems but they have to utilize this available resources.
Their captain must least from the front and try to take good decisions. He must not lose his wickets when he got set as others must also avoid this.
Now South Africa have to beat India to bounce back in this tournament. Otherwise the could be difficult for them to qualify for knick out stage.
Bangladesh on the other hand, should play the same way. They are a real threat for all the teams and they are no longer to be an average team.
Again we have two low scoring and one sided games in this World Cup. This is really unfortunate fans who want high scoring and tight games.
Sri Lanka just bowled out on 136 against New Zealand on a green pitch. They never looked comfortable during their innings.
D. Karunaratne scored 50. He carried his bat but the rest of team looked ugly on seeming wicket.
Matt Henry and Ferguson who were very expensive in a warm up match against Westindies took 3 wickets each.
New Zealand have chased the target quite easily in 17th ove with quickfire 50s by their openers.
Both Munro and Guptil looked in-form and they smashed Sri Lankan blowers to all parts.
New Zealand made a good start to their World Cup campaign. This performance obviously will increase the morale of whole team which probably gone down after warm-up game against Westindies.
In another match, Australia came out on top against Afghanistan.
Afghanistan were bowled out on just 207 on batting surface at Bristol. Their top order didn’t able fire and only one fifty by Najeebullah Zadran was scored.
Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa took three wickets each. Aussies chased down the target in just 30th over with David Warner scoring 89 not out.
Australia looked good in all departments. Their pace and spin bowling showed their class and in batting openers were just outstanding.
David Warner had a great comeback with his match winning performance. That show the mental toughness of Aussies’ players.
Australian selectors have included both Smith and Warner directly into the World Cup and so far both fulfilled the expectations.
Afghanistan’s batsmen must learn how to build innings and how to bat well against good teams. Again their spinners didn’t able to deliver much. Australian batsmen played them easily.
Afghanistan’s batters have to score runs in this tournament in order to give their spinners enough runs to fight. Their captain should also use his bowlers intelligently.
So overall this is not the start which fans eternal looking for. Good and exciting matches are required in order to make this tournament interesting. Everything is outstanding except matches in this World Cup.
So teams must also realize the importance of this World Cup and they have to perform well especially teams who have lost their opening encounters very badly.
I had never thought that I would be writing this blog as early but unfortunately I am doing this. It was indeed a shameful performance by our team.
Our batsmen had no clue of how to deal with short pitch bowling. West-Indian bowlers kept on pitching the ball short and our batsmen was bitting a dust one by one.
Wicket looked fresh; having an extra bounce but overall it was a good surface to bat on.
The few shorts that was hit by our players showed that it was nothing wrong in the wicket. The ball came out on bat very nicely but we kept loosing wickets at regular intervals.
We should have score more than 300 on this flat wicket but short bowling became a nightmare for out team.
When you bowled out on 105, you cannever win a match especially in the modern era. But you could show some positive intend to the opposition. That intend was also missing. We never used spinners. It could be better if we starts off with a spinner but we went with Hassan Ali who was ridiculously out of form these days. Gayle took him to the clearners. We continued to bowl with seekers but except Mohammad Aamir, other two didn’t look too impressive.
Taking the pace off the ball could have been better. If we would have taken five wickets or more, this could benefited us in upcoming matches. But we didn’t go for that this as well.
Only one positive aspect we could take from that game is the bowling spell of Mohammad Aamir. He took three wickets. This one good thing for our team because in-form Aamir is an essential for our team.
Pakistan should not loose hope. This probably was a sue failure for our batting. But unfortunately we failed at wrong time and too badly also. Our team management must sit with our team and identify reasons of such bad performance.
Team management have to keep the morale of our players high and they must keep them motivated. Our think tank must make a strategy to deal with short-pitch bowling.
Some changes can be made in the playing eleven. Inclusion of Asif Ali could be take place. Hassan Ali can be replaced with some other seemer because he is leaking too many runs.
Our nation must back our team because this is the hard time for them. They have that ability to come back strong which they did in CT 2017.