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Edwards steps up as Hampshire women’s director – WSAIGO Sports
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Edwards steps up as Hampshire women’s director

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Charlotte Edwards, the former England women’s captain, has made her first movement into cricket administration by being appointed as Hampshire’s director of women’s cricket.

Edwards, who will continue to captain Hampshire Women for a second season this summer, will head up the management of both Hampshire Women’s first-team and player pathway sides, as well as the Southern Vipers – the team she led to the inaugural Kia Super League title in 2016.

She takes over the role filled by former Hampshire wicketkeeper Bob Parks, who has announced his retirement after more than 45 years involved in the game.

“I’m extremely excited about my new role as director of women’s cricket,” Edwards said. “Having played for Hampshire and Southern Vipers for the past two seasons, I see an ambitious organisation that will complement my passion for domestic cricket. I look forward to working with players, coaches and staff to help Hampshire become one of the leading domestic clubs in the country for women’s cricket.”

Edwards, who captained the England Women’s side for more than a decade before retiring in 2015, scored more than 10,000 international runs during her 20-year career.

Her career spanned four Ashes series victories, a World T20 title and the 2009 World Cup victory as England captain. In 2014, she was awarded a CBE for her services to cricket.

“We’re delighted that Charlotte has agreed to take up the role,” Hampshire’s chief executive officer, David Mann, said. “She’s a legend in the women’s game and has been a superb ambassador for the Vipers both on and off the pitch over the past two seasons.

“Her wealth of experience and knowledge of the game will be invaluable assets for our management group and we’re excited by the qualities she brings to the role.

“Our thanks must go to Bob Parks who has been an integral part of what the Southern Vipers and Hampshire Women have been able to achieve over the past two seasons and we all wish him well in his retirement.”



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Rishabh Pant, Ajinkya Rahane to play for India A against England Lions

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Rishabh Pant will feature in the fourth and fifth matches of India A’s one-day series against England Lions on January 29 and 31 in Thiruvananthapuram.

The series will also give Ajinkya Rahane, who has been out of favour in ODIs of late, a chance to push his case for World Cup selection. Rahane will captain India A in the first three one-dayers on January 23, 25 and 27.

Rahane hasn’t featured in ODIs since the end of India’s tour of South Africa in February 2018. Before that, playing mostly as the reserve opener, he had made 725 runs at an average of 48.33, including a hundred and eight fifties, in his last 17 ODIs.

Pant, India’s Test wicketkeeper, is not part of the limited-overs India squads currently touring Australia and New Zealand. According to MSK Prasad, the chairman of selectors, Pant was “very much” part of India’s World Cup plans, but was left out to give him rest after a grueling Test series in Australia. Pant will effectively have had just over three weeks of rest between the conclusion of the fourth Test in Sydney and the fourth one-dayer against England Lions.

Also part of the squad for the first three ODIs is Krunal Pandya, who will later fly out to join the India team in New Zealand ahead of the three-match T20I series, which begins on February 6.

The selectors also named a Board President’s XI, which will play a two-day warm-up match against England Lions ahead of the two four-day games that the visitors will play against India A in Wayanad and Mysore. That team will be led by the wicketkeeper-batsman Ishan Kishan.

The India A and Board President’s XI squads do not feature any players from Karnataka, Saurashtra, Vidarbha and Kerala, the four Ranji Trophy quarter-finalists.

India A squad for 1st, 2nd and 3rd one-dayers: Ajinkya Rahane (capt), Anmolpreet Singh, Rituraj Gaekwad, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Ankit Bawne, Ishan Kishan (wk), Krunal Pandya, Axar Patel, Mayank Markande, Jayant Yadav, Siddarth Kaul, Shardul Thakur, Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini

India A squad for 4th and 5th one-dayers: Ankit Bawne (capt), Rituraj Gaekwad, Anmolpreet Singh, Ricky Bhui, Siddhesh Lad, Himmat Singh, Rishabh Pant (wk), Deepak Hooda, Axar Patel, Rahul Chahar, Jayant Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Avesh Khan, Deepak Chahar, Shardul Thakur

Board President’s XI for two-day warm-up game: Ishan Kishan (capt & wk), Akshath Reddy, Dhruv Shorey, Ricky Bhui, Siddhesh Lad, Rinku Singh, Priyam Garg, Saurabh Kumar, Rahul Chahar, Jayant Yadav, Aniket Choudhary, Ankit Rajpoot, Rajesh Mohanty



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Pujara made us believe we could win it – Unadkat | Cricket

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The victorious Saurashtra players © Getty Images


Before Saturday, Saurashtra had never won a match against Uttar Pradesh in the Ranji Trophy. They had played seven, losing three and conceding the first-innings lead thrice.

That record didn’t look likely to change when Saurashtra ended their first innings against the same opponents in the Ranji Trophy 2018-19 quarter-final 177 runs in arrears. But this time, they made history, not only winning their first match against UP, but also registering the highest successful chase in Ranji history.

Saurashtra had bowled UP out for 194 in the second innings, but that still left them a target of 372. But the top order came good as they bettered the previous highest successful chase, Assam’s 371 against Services in 2008-09.

Saurashtra captain Jaydev Unadkat hailed the landmark victory. “I think this is one of the biggest victories in the history of Saurashtra,” Unadkat said after the match. “The way we fought back in the game made it more special. So probably one of the best, if not the best, victory for Saurashtra. I have been told it’s the highest run-chase in the Ranji Trophy. So nothing can be more special than this.”

Two factors helped Saurashtra pull off the win. The fact that this was a five-day game, as opposed to the four-day games in the league stages, and that Saurashtra had Cheteshwar Pujara in their ranks.

“No one was thinking that we were out of the game,” Unadkat said. “The thing that we talked about before the game was that it’s a five-day game, and not the usual four-day game we play in the Ranji Trophy. The talk in the team was it will be a two-innings game. Although we didn’t do well in the first innings, even if we had, we still would have been on our toes.

“The great plus was that we had Cheteshwar as well. Actually, he was the one who took the initiative in between the innings and told us, ‘guys, it’s a five-day game and we can come back in this game’. And we all believed it.



“We wanted our batting to revolve around him. If he bats at No. 4, there can be two guys around him who can bat with him and then he can carry the innings forward. If the side is already 150 for 2 and Cheteshwar is still to come, things would be very different for the opposition.”


Jaydev Unadkat



“There was one point in the game where we thought it was now-or-never when they [UP] were 107 for 1 [in their second innings]. I think it was drinks in between and then we told ourselves one good hour and we can turn around the game. [Dharmendrasinh] Jadeja has been our trump card so far, bowling well on all kinds of wickets. I was relying on him to give me that breakthrough and two set batsmen got out quickly and that brought us back in the game. And then we never left our grip from it.”

For Pujara, this was the first game after a successful Australia tour during which he scored 521 runs in four Tests at an average of over 74, and was man of the series in India’s first-ever Test series win in Australia. While Pujara normally bats at No. 3, here he batted at No. 4 in the first innings, while in the second, the presence of Kamlesh Makvana as nightwatchman meant he came in at No.5. The man occupying the No.3 slot for Sausrashtra was the 20-year-old Vishvaraj Jadeja, who has made his debut this season.

“The whole thing about that was we wanted our batting to revolve around him [Pujara],” Unadkat said. “Like if he bats at No. 4, then there can be two guys around him who can bat with him and then he can carry the innings forward. If the side is already 150 for 2 and Cheteshwar is still to come, things would be very different for the opposition. That was the whole idea and I think that turned out pretty good in the second innings.”

Unadkat was also full of praise for youngsters Harvik Desai and Chetan Sakariya; both also playing their first season. Desai scored 84 and 116 in the game and was declared man of the match, while left-arm pacer Sakariya’s three-wicket burst in the second innings reduced UP from 162 for 4 to 166 for 7.

“I think he [Desai] has been waiting for his century like no one else. He had got six fifties but didn’t get a hundred. So he was a bit nervous about being 83 not out at stumps [on Day 4]. Also, I haven’t seen a better slip catcher for Saurashtra than him. He has taken 15-16 catches without dropping even one. He is still very young, he is still learning but I think he has a bright career ahead of him.

“We got a couple of fast bowlers injured before the start of the season itself. So we needed someone to turn up and do well. Even I got injured in between. Then Chetan took up that position and he really turned up like anything. He is one bowler who can be good in all three formats. I am really looking forward to keep bowling with him, and we can prove to be a really great bowling force for Saurashtra.”

Hemant Brar is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo


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Kurtis Patterson and Jon Holland shine on another disappointing day for Sri Lankans | Cricket

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Kurtis Patterson in full flow © Getty Images


The Sri Lankan batsmen ended the three-day practice match in Hobart without a half-century between them in either innings, as they stumbled against the left-arm spin of Jon Holland on day three.

The visitors had in fact been modest the entire day, taking only one wicket in their 32.5 overs with the ball before stuttering to 131 for 6 in their second innings. Their only solace is that the their tormentors on day three – Kurtis Patterson, who cracked a second unbeaten century in the game, and Holland, who took 4 for 28 – are not in Australia’s Test squad.

Only Lahiru Thirimanne, who is essentially auditioning to open alongside Dimuth Karunaratne, made a score of significance for the Sri Lankans, making 46 off 121 balls. Nos. 4 to 7 fell in fairly quick succession to Holland, with Dhananjaya de Silva and Sadeera Samarawickrama picking up their second disappointing scores in the match, making 2 and 6 respectively. What was worse for the Sri Lankans was that Roshen Silva, who was batting on 23, was forced to retire hurt.

Earlier in the day, Marnus Labuschagne, who may be in Australia’s XI in the first Test at the Gabba, completed a half-century, having begun the day on 33. Lahiru Kumara dismissed him for 50 off 101 balls, but that would be the last wicket the Sri Lankans would take in the day, as Patterson struck 102 not out off 136 balls, to go with his 157 not out off 212 deliveries in the first innings. Patterson was involved in an unbroken 90-run stand for the fourth wicket, to which partner Will Pucovski’s contribution was 33 off 70.

Perhaps not wanting to risk their frontline seamers, however, the Sri Lankans bowled only Kumara in extended spells on day three, with Dushmantha Chameera, Suranga Lakmal and Kasun Rajitha bowled only for a handful of overs.

The first Test starts on Thursday.

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