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IND vs AUS: Glenn McGrath's message to Navdeep Saini - Just enjoy it, mate

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ Cricket  
For three Tests in a row, India have declared their playing XI on the eve of the match. This practice has impressed former Australian pacer Glenn McGrath as it "shows the confidence" the Indian team have. For the third Test against Australia at Sydney today, pacer Navdeep Saini is set to debut in place of the injured Umesh Yadav while Rohit Sharma will come in place of opener Mayank Agarwal. India's remarkable comeback in Melbourne after capitulation in the first Test at Adelaide has lit up the contest. The outcome of the third Test can have a massive influence on which way the Border-Gavaskar Trophy tilts. Glenn McGrath. Pic/Atul Kamble McGrath wants debutant Saini to simply back himself. "Saini should just look to enjoy it. We saw [Mohammed] Siraj in Melbourne and the way he bowled. He wasn't worried and he backed himself. So, just keep bowling the way you have been bowling, the reason you got picked in the first place," was McGrath's advice to the Haryana rookie ahead of the Pink Te..
                 

3rd Test: 'Get T Natarajan and be happy,' says Adam Gilchrist to Team India

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ Cricket  
The weeklong break between Tests for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy comes to an end tomorrow, as India and Australia square off with the series scoreline wonderfully poised at 1-1. This time round both teams will see a couple of changes. Will Pucovski will be making his debut according to all accounts, and David Warner will be back after his injury. They would be replacing the opening duo of Joe Burns and Matthew Wade but I see the latter being made to slide down to the middle order and Travis Head sitting this Test out. Tim Paine would be hoping that these changes will also bring a change in the mindset and approach of his batsmen. The team is yet to cross 200 and the Indian bowlers have had the better of them in each of the three completed innings. The lack of intent from Australia's batsmen have allowed the Indians to bowl at them as planned. Warner, a big boost for Oz I would imagine that the inclusion of Warner at the top of the order would address that to some degree. He has the expe..
                 

IND vs AUS: Matthew Wade finds spin duo Ashwin-Jadeja too tough

12 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ Cricket  
Australia's opening batsman Matthew Wade, who was dismissed by India's spin duo of off-spinner R Ashwin and left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja in the last Test at Melbourne, admitted on Sunday that tackling them is a huge challenge. "They [Ashwin and Jadeja] are a tough spin duo to crack, very consistent and have bowled terrifically well, especially in Melbourne. Probably, they got more spin and bounce, more than what we expected in the first innings. That was a little bit of a shocker, but we expected that to come into play," Wade said at a virtual press conference from Melbourne. The third Test at Sydney starts on Thursday. Useful Wade Wade, 33, who scored 111 runs in the two Tests of this season's Border-Gavaskar Trophy, is confident that Steven Smith, who managed to score just 10 runs in his last two Tests, will come to the rescue of the hosts in the remaining two games. India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja celebrates taking the wicket of Australian opener Matthew Wade during Day Three ..
                 

IND vs AUS: 'No breach of protocol'

13 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ Cricket  
A fanboy moment on spotting Indian cricketers at a Melbourne restaurant has landed Test vice-captain Rohit Sharma, openers Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill, wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant and pacer Navdeep Saini in trouble. The fan's viral video of the cricketers sitting in the restaurant and then his description of his experience on Twitter, where he described hugging Pant, taking selfies with the players and then footing their bill of AUD 118 [R6,500 approximately] was enough to send the BCCI and Cricket Australia into action. Though the BCCI earlier rubbished launching any probe into the incident, Cricket Australia in a statement, confirmed a joint investigation. The above screengrab shows Indian players at a Melbourne restaurant While the alleged bio-secure bubble breach is under investigation, it is understood that the Indian cricketers do not think they have violated any protocol. As per Cricket Australia's reported bubble rule, eating in an indoor restaurant is not permissible. The..
                 

IND vs AUS: He's all about the team

13 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ Cricket  
It was no surprise that Ajinkya Rahane captained India flawlessly at the MCG; anyone who saw him in charge at Dharamsala in 2017 would've recognised a man born to lead cricket teams. There were a lot of similarities between that 2017 match and the one at the MCG. Firstly, it was between the same two highly-competitive rivals, then there was the valuable first innings lower order contribution from Ravindra Jadeja and finally Rahane aggressively accumulating the required runs in a nervy pursuit of a moderate victory total. The moment that caught my attention in the Dharamsala match was when Rahane called on debutant left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav with David Warner and Steven Smith involved in a century partnership. "This is a brave move," I thought and it turned out to be a very smart one. Kuldeep quickly claimed the wicket of Warner—expertly caught by Rahane at first slip—and this prompted a five-wicket slide among the Australian middle-order. That's part of ..