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The Hundred 2021 – Season to launch with women’s fixture on July 21



The Hundred 2021 - Season to launch with women's fixture

ECB aims to sell out The Oval on new competition’s opening night

The first match in the Hundred will be played between women’s teams on July 21, with the ECB targeting a sell-out at The Oval on the competition’s opening night.

Fixtures for the ECB’s new 100-ball competition were released on Tuesday, after the inaugural season was postponed by a year due to the Covid pandemic, with Oval Invincibles playing Manchester Originals in standalone women’s and men’s fixtures on the first two nights. It is thought to be the first time that a major sporting event in the UK has seen men’s and women’s tournaments launched alongside each other with the women’s fixture chosen as the curtain-raiser.

From that point on, all fixtures will be played as double-headers – branded as “matchdays” – with women’s and men’s games taking place back-to-back at the same venue.

There had initially been plans to stage women’s matches at smaller county grounds around the country, but they were shelved in November due to Covid-related logistical complications. Instead, all fixtures will be staged at the eight men’s Test venues, with every game broadcast on Sky Sports. The BBC will show 10 matches in the men’s competition, and have the rights to broadcast up to eight in the women’s. They have confirmed they will broadcast the opening fixture and the final of the women’s competition live on BBC2.

“All of the women’s matches will be first,” Beth Barrett-Wild, the head of the women’s Hundred, told ESPNcricinfo. “We did have some discussions as to whether we’d look to flip that [but] we’ve had a few trial runs of the women playing after the men and sometimes you get a different vibe and crowd to the one you’d want. I went to a Surrey Stars match in the KSL [Kia Super League] a few years ago after a men’s match and you got the horrible scenario of people leaving, which looks dreadful.

“It’s mega news that every single one of those women’s matches will be broadcast live on Sky Sports – all 34 matches. It really is an unprecedented level of coverage.”

Tickets will go on sale to the general public from April 7, with earlier priority windows for county members and 2020 buyers. While tickets had been cheaper for standalone women’s fixtures when they went on sale in early 2020, they will now provide access to the ground for a full double-header at the original price of a men’s ticket. The prospect of fans being able to attend games was enhanced on Monday, when the UK government announced plans to lift all Covid-related restrictions by June 21.

Barrett-Wild played down any concern that the requirement to buy a ticket for both games – rather than just the cheaper women’s ones – could put families off going to games. “It will be one ticket but it’s so reasonably priced that we don’t see that as being a barrier,” she said. “The whole matchday experience will hopefully make it worthwhile.”

There has also been a change to the format of the knockout stages, with the ‘eliminators’ – a single semi-final between the teams finishing second and third – and the finals being staged back-to-back at The Oval and Lord’s respectively on August 20 and 21, rather than separate women’s and men’s Finals Days. Hove had been due to host the women’s Finals Day, but will no longer stage any games in the competition.

“Having the women’s and men’s final at Lord’s on the same day on that Saturday is massive,” Barrett-Wild said. “They’re both going to be on the BBC – that’s enormous. When we talk about playing in front of 4000 people in Hove, that’s great and we’ve seen that working brilliantly. But in terms of the scale and the uplift for the women’s match being played at Lord’s, hopefully in front of a full crowd, on that Saturday – it’s huge. That’s something the players will be really excited about.”

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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.





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




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




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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