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Bangladesh vs West Indies, 1st Test

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Bangladesh vs West Indies, 1st Test
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Having a full-strength squad at his disposal for the first time should help

Fifteen months into his Test captaincy, Mominul Haque will finally get a full-strength Bangladesh side at his disposal. The return of Shakib Al Hasan, the man he had replaced on the fateful evening of October 29, 2019, has made this possible.

In his first series as Test captain, Bangladesh were without Shakib and Tamim Iqbal. For the second, Mushfiqur Rahim didn’t travel to Pakistan for the Karachi Test. Then against Zimbabwe last February, Mominul had both Tamim and Mushfiqur in the line-up; Mushfiqur going on to score the match-winning double-century. But adding Shakib to the mix is certainly a big difference to the captain’s arsenal.

Mominul said that the senior players are already supportive of his captaincy, but their presence in the field is going to add a missing dimension in terms of skills, experience and temperament.

“It is a good opportunity for a young captain when the full squad is available,” he said. “Shakib’s batting and bowling is going to help me lead the side that will now have a better combination. The senior players have played for around 12 or 13 years.

“I have nothing to ask for anything extra. They are all professionals, and they know exactly how to react and contribute. I am happy with their support in telling me how to handle certain situations.”

It is likely that Bangladesh will pick all four of their best spinners in the XI – Shakib, Taijul Islam, Mehidy Hasan and Nayeem Hasan. It also seems likely that they will field a rejuvenated Mustafizur Rahman, who has developed the in swinger to the right-hander along with his bag of cutters and other variations.

This strength is such a sharp contrast to Mominul’s first two tours as Test captain, where he had to handle a depleted squad. In India, the gap in skills between the two Test sides was starkly evident. Bangladesh were beaten in a little over three days in both Indore and Kolkata, which hosted a huge party to commemorate the country’s first pink-ball Test.

Then Bangladesh went down to their third innings defeat in a row against Pakistan in Karachi, even as the country hadn’t fully gotten over their historic triumph at the Under-19 World Cup in South Africa. Then they somehow redeemed themselves against Zimbabwe at home.

While having the seniors around is an advantage, Mominul would want to leave his stamp, both as a leader and batsman. While he is an established Test batsman, there have been rumblings on and off about his home and away record. He is regarded highly by senior cricketers, something that was particularly evident when Chandika Hathurusingha had dropped him in 2017, and later had to reinstate him in the squad.

Mominul’s captaincy from this point is going to be an interesting period in Bangladesh cricket, where captaincy is often dependent on hierarchy. On perhaps only a couple of occasions, has the BCB chose a captain before his perceived “turn” in terms of seniority.

After senior cricketers led the side during its pre-Test status era, the appointment of Naimur Rahman was a bit of a surprise in 2000. Nine years later, the 22-year old Shakib Al Hasan being thrust into the leadership role in the absence of the often injured Mortaza was another “out of turn” appointment.

Bangladesh have been led by one of their five senior cricketers since 2009, so Mominul’s hasty ascent during that distressing October evening in Dhaka was a bit of a surprise. He has captained in four Tests but even Mominul would admit that he hasn’t quite become a leader of the team.

For that, he would certainly need to lead the side in the presence of Bangladesh’s best cricketers, not just to prove to everyone that he can lead, but to ensure that he gives himself the best opportunity to win a Test match.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo’s Bangladesh correspondent. @isam84

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/story/1249842.html?CMP=OTC-RSS

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EngVsPak- England defeated Pakistan by three wickets

Pakistan has struggled with their batting, putting up scores of 141 and 195 as they were outplayed in the first two ODIs.

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EngVsPak

James Vince scored a hundred and Lewis Gregory contributed 77 as England defeated Pakistan by three wickets to complete a clean sweep of the three-match ODI series.

Vince raced to 102 off 95 deliveries and Gregory struck his 77 of 69 balls as hosts England, chasing Pakistan’s challenging score of 331 for seven wickets, reached 332 for seven with two overs to spare.

Opener Phil Salt scored 37 while skipper Ben Stokes added 32 as England held their nerves to register a comfortable win in third and final ODI.

Earlier, skipper Babar Azam struck a career-best 158 (139-ball) and helped Pakistan’s batting finally came good in this series.

Opener Imam-ul-Haq scored 56 and Mohammad Rizwan 74 as Pakistan posted 331 for nine wickets in their allotted 50 overs.

Playing against a makeshift England squad, after the originally selected player went into isolation after three players tested positive for COVID-19, Pakistan has struggled with their batting, putting up scores of 141 and 195 as they were outplayed in the first two ODIs.

Babar came in after Fakhar Zaman was out early for 6, caught by Zak Crawley off Saqib Mahmood. He raised 92 runs for the third wicket with opener Imam-ul-Haq and then put together a partnership of 179 with Rizwan.
However, they suffered a collapse soon after Rizwan was out, caught by wicketkeeper Simpson off seamer Brydon Carse, with the score 292/3. Only one of the remaining seven batsman managed to reach double digits.

But Babar kept blasting runs from the other end and was the eighth batsman out with the score 328 in the 50th over.

He struck 14 boundaries and four sixes during his innings.
Carse was the best England bowler on display as he claimed five wickets for 61 in his 10 overs.

Brief scores: Pakistan 331/9 in 50 overs (Imam-ul-Haq 56, Babar Azam 158, M Rizwan 74; Brydon Carse 5/61).

England 332/7 in 48 overs (Phil Salt 37, James Vince 102, Ben Stokes 32, Lewis Gregory 77; Haris Rauf 4/65).

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Corona hit – India-Lanka ODI matches were postponed for four days

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Corona hit - India-Lanka ODI matches were postponed for four days

India’s tour of Sri Lanka has hit a roadblock after two Covid-19 positive cases in the home team’s camp delayed the start of the ODI series by at least four days, and canceled due to more cases. The possibility has been left open. Sri Lankan batting coach Grant Flower and the team’s performance analyst Shirantha Niroshna have both tested positive and the entire team that arrived from England this week has been put in isolation.

Though both the boards have not made any official statement yet, it seems that all the six matches will be played within a period of 10-11 days if there is no scope for any more positive cases. There are also concerns that the series could be called off if more positive cases emerge in the Sri Lankan camp. This means that the Indian team, which has already spent 12 days in Sri Lanka, will have to return home without playing a single match.

The tentative dates for the ODIs have been set as July 17, 19 and 21. The report states that the T20 Internationals will be played on July 24, 25 and 27. However, neither Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) nor the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has given any confirmation regarding the dates.

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Indonesia lacks oxygen, seeks help as virus cases rise

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Indonesia lacks oxygen, seeks help as virus cases rise

Just two months ago, Indonesia came forward to India’s aid with thousands of tanks of oxygen. Today, the Southeast Asian country is running out of oxygen as it grapples with a devastating wave of coronavirus cases and the government is seeking emergency supplies from other countries, including Singapore and China.

Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, the government minister in charge of Indonesia’s pandemic response, said a shipment of more than 1,000 oxygen cylinders, concentrators, ventilators and other health equipment arrived from Singapore on Friday, followed by another 1,000 ventilators from Australia.

In addition, Pandjaitan said, Indonesia plans to purchase 36,000 tons of oxygen and 10,000 concentrators — equipment that generates oxygen — from neighboring Singapore. He said he was in contact with China and other possible oxygen sources. The US and the United Arab Emirates have also offered help.

Overall, Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous country, has reported more than 2.4 million infections and 63,760 deaths from COVID-19. Those figures are widely believed to be a huge undercount due to low testing and poor tracing measures. On Thursday, Indonesia reported nearly 39,000 confirmed cases, its biggest single-day jump.

Indonesia’s hospitals have been flooded, with increasing numbers of sick people in isolation at home or waiting to receive emergency care. In Indonesia’s most populous island, Java, hospitals began setting up temporary intensive care units in mid-June. Many patients are waiting for several days to get admitted. Oxygen tanks rolled on the sidewalks for the lucky few, while others were told they’d have to find their own.

The city’s deputy mayor Yaya Mulyana said emergency rooms at a public hospital in Bandung city were closed earlier this week amid panic buying over rising infections in the West Java provincial capital.

“The panicked people bought oxygen tanks, though they didn’t need them yet,” said Muliana. “This has exhausted the supply of oxygen.”

At a hospital in Yogyakarta in central Java, 63 COVID-19 patients died in one day – 33 of them during its central liquid oxygen supply, although the hospital switched to using oxygen cylinders was, spokesman Banu Harmawan said.

When a brutal outbreak ravaged the country, Indonesia donated 3,400 oxygen cylinders and concentrators to India. As its own cases rose, Jakarta scrapped plans to send another 2,000 oxygen concentrators to India in late June. The daily requirement of oxygen has reached 1,928 tonnes per day. According to government data, the total available production capacity of the country is 2,262 tonnes per day.

“I asked for 100% oxygen first for medical purposes, which means all industrial allocation should be shifted to medical,” said Panjaitan, a minister in the government. “We are racing against time, we have to act fast.”

Noting the rapid spread of the highly contagious delta variant, he warned that Indonesia could face a worst-case scenario with 50,000 cases a day. The next two weeks will be crucial, he said.

The industry ministry responded by issuing a decree that all oxygen supplies be sent to hospitals packed with coronavirus patients and asked industry players to cooperate.

Oxygen is used to make many products including textiles, plastics and vehicles. Oil refineries, chemical makers and steel makers also use it. But industry leaders are clamoring to support government efforts to maximize supplies for hospitals.

The government has redirected oxygen supplies from industrial plants at Morowali in Central Sulawesi, Balikpapan on the island of Borneo, and Belawan and Batam on the island of Sumatra, Pandjaitan said. Small oxygen industries have also been directed to produce pharmaceutical oxygen.

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