Round-up: No India-Pakistan encounter in World T20, Windies give England reality check
Mir Hamza’s county debut
Pakistan fast bowler Mir Hamza is all set to make his county debut this year with Sussex on a two-month deal
The 26-year-old is expected to play nine county games plus a tour game against Australia A in July.
2019 World Cup warm-up fixtures announced
ICC has announced the warm-up fixtures for Men’s Cricket World Cup to be played this year in England and Wales. Pakistan will take on Afghanistan and Bangladesh, while India will play New Zealand and Bangladesh ahead of the main showdown.
The captaincy fiasco
Pakistan Cricket Team has not yet come to the final decision as to who will lead the team in the 2019 World Cup post the suspension of ex-skipper Sarfraz Ahmed over a racist comment he made against South Africa all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo. Shoaib Malik replaced Sarfraz Ahmed as captain. Although the PCB has tried to quell the rumours, the indecisiveness is further augmenting the problems.
?? 'There is never a dull moment with Pakistan cricket. Nothing is smooth or planned. Before this series, we were all lauding Sarfraz Ahmed and now people are calling for his head' - Wasim Akram on calls for change of captain #SAvPAK 1st T20I preview ?? https://t.co/KfAri3wcZz pic.twitter.com/5PIPKDjtX1— Cricingif (@_cricingif) January 31, 2019
No Indo-Pak encounter in WC
For the first time since the 2011 World Cup, the biggest rivals in the cricket world, i.e. Pakistan and India, won’t battle on the ground in the group stages of an ICC tournament. The fixtures for the T20 World Cup in 2020 were announced by the ICC last week, separating the arch-rivals in the group stages.
India all-rounder Ambati Rayudu was suspended from bowling in international cricket by the ICC owing to a suspect action during the first ODI against Australia and was given 14 days to get his action tested.
Super over thriller
Windies women beat Pakistan in a Super Over in the second T20I to take an unassailable 2-0 in the three match series. The Windies women are visiting Pakistan for the first time in 15 years for a short series before the ODI series to be played in the UAE.
#PAKWvWIW VICTORY! A thrilling Super Over was the deciding factor for the 2 teams after the score was leveled at 132. WINDIES set an ambitious 18 runs which saw 2 sixes and 1 four from @Dottin_5 in the batting and 2 wickets from @selman_shakera in the bowling attack. ????????. pic.twitter.com/Qr9uEFozs4— Windies Cricket (@windiescricket) February 1, 2019
Its alright girls. Good fight today. That’s what we want. Keep it up the good work and held your head up. Good luck for the next match #PAKWvWIW— Sarfaraz Ahmed (@SarfarazA_54) February 1, 2019
Reality check for England
West Indies thrashed England by 381 runs in the first Test at Barbados. In terms of the margin, only England’s thumping in Manchester in 1976 against Clive Lloyd’s men is bigger. Moeen Ali registered his first pair in Test cricket, while Jason Holder smashed the second fastest Test double century against England ever to mark the emphatic win, also becoming the first West Indies all-rounder to top ICC rankings since fellow Bajan Sir Garfield Sobers.
Jason Holder is only second to Nathan Astle in fastest double-centuries vs England ©Cricingif