Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 6th 2014 Contents A46
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, December 6, 2014
Like the Test series that preceded the
Twenty20 games, New Zealand forged a
comeback to beat Pakistan by 17 runs in
Dubai to square the two-match series 1-
1, yesterday. A chase of 145 proved chal-
lenging on a slow pitch and New Zealand s
slower bowlers made use of the conditions
and relatively little dew to keep a tight
grip on the chase.
Despite the early wickets, the result of
Man-of-the-Match Anton Devcich s surprise
spell at the top of the innings, Pakistan were
in the game. The New Zealand bowlers had
squeezed the equation down to 54 off the
last five overs but with Shahid Afridi at the
crease, Pakistan had more than a whiff of
a chance. That chance evaporated in the
18th over, one of the worst of the innings,
as Afridi was caught behind off a pull shot,
after having smacked the previous ball
bowled by a nervous James Neesham for a
six.Devcich opened the bowling for the first
time in T20s and set up New Zealand s
good start with the wickets of Sarfraz Ahmed
and Mohammad Hafeez. Sarfraz s lbw was
a doubtful decision, whereas Hafeez lobbed
a return catch off a straight length ball.
Even at 24 for 3 in the fifth over, Pakistan s
chase had not disintegrated. Ahmed She-
hzad, playing his first game since a skull
fracture, anchored the innings with a 40-
run stand with Saad Nasim.
Nasim s dismissal though instigated a
stutter. Vettori, playing his first T20 inter-
national since 2012, dismissed Shehzad for
33. Umar Akmal, Anwar Ali and Afridi fell
in the next three overs and the match ended
in the 19th. The wickets were neatly divided
between the New Zealand bowlers---Devcich
broke the top order finishing with 2 for 16,
Neesham s 3 for 25 scooped out the mid-
dle-order and Kyle Mills then cleaned up
Both sides had gone into the game with
a few changes. Pakistan brought back She-
hzad and Gul in place of Awais Zia and
Mohammad Irfan. New Zealand s changes
were also forced by fitness concerns. A tight
hamstring kept Martin Guptill out, while
Corey Anderson was rested as a precaution
after being hit on the helmet during the
first T20. Dean Brownlie and Tom Latham
were brought in their place and Kane
Williamson had hoped that the depth in
batting could help the side do better than
the 135 they managed in the first game.
They did, but only barely.
Williamson and Devcich did their job at
the start of the innings, sharing a solid 49-
run stand in seven overs. Williamson led
the way, with pleasing footwork, especially
against Gul, during his 32. After the Pow-
erplay though, things went downhill. Hafeez
added another left-handed batsman to his
tally with Devcich s dismissal, Afridi got
Brownlie and Williamson in successive overs
which left Latham and Ross Taylor having
to start all over again.
Taylor fell in the 13th over and the revival
New Zealand needed, although a brief one,
came in the form of a lively stand between
Latham and Luke Ronchi, the latter reprising
his rescue-act role from the first match.
Their 38-run stand came off 23 deliveries
courtesy Latham s sweeps and two towering,
successive sixes from Ronchi.
Both players fell in successive overs
towards the end of the innings, but their
stand had done enough to help New Zealand
put together 51 runs in the last five overs
and their pace eventually made the differ-
Neesham, Mills pilot
NZ to 17-run win in T20
COLOMBO---Sri Lanka has picked
uncapped left-arm spinner Lakshan San-
dakan for the fourth and fifth one-day
internationals against England.
Seam bowler Suranga Lakmal also returns
after an injury layoff in the 16-man squad
named on Thursday.
Sandakan has taken 58 first-class wickets
in 14 matches at an average of 22, and a
wicket in every 34 deliveries.
Batsman Mahela Jayawardene, who opted
out of the third match citing personal rea-
sons, also returns. Thilina Kandamby makes
way for him after a disappointing perform-
ance in his return to international cricket
after more than three years.
Kandamby made a two-ball duck on
Wednesday in the loss in Hambantota.
Seam bowler Shaminda Eranga has also
been left out. The fourth match in a series
which Sri Lanka leads 2-1 is on Sunday in
Sri Lanka adds left-arm bowler for England ODIs
to play in first
ADELAIDE---Australia captain Michael Clarke
remains hopeful of playing in the first Test against
India next week and will test out his injured ham-
string in training today.
Clarke ran at the Sydney Cricket Ground yesterday
and was to join the team in Adelaide later in the
day. Clarke is recovering from his third hamstring
injury since August and from the death of close
friend and teammate Phillip Hughes, who suffered
fatal injuries from being hit by ball while batting
in a domestic match last week.
Coach Darren Lehmann says "as long as he s
(Clarke s) fine to do the running and can bat (he ll
play) ...we ll be guided by medical staff, the captain
"He s pretty mentally strong, as you saw through-
out the week," Lehmann added, referring to Clarke s
leading role following the death of Hughes and at
the batsman s funeral on Wednesday. "He held
himself together really well and led the team really
The first Test begins Tuesday at the Adelaide
Oval, and India will play without its regular captain
Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who is recovering from a
right thumb injury. Virat Kohli will lead the visitors.
The 19-man squad includes two other wicket-
keepers, Wriddhiman Saha and Naman Ojha, but
it is expected that Ojha will return to India once
Dhoni has recovered, likely ahead of the second
test in Brisbane beginning December 17.
The selection committee, which met in Mumbai,
named rookie batsman Lokesh Rahul as the third
opener, after Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan,
and included leg spinner Karn Sharma for the first
Rahul, who toured Australia earlier this year with
the India A side, was picked ahead of more expe-
rienced openers like Gautam Gambhir and Virender
Sehwag because of his strong recent form. (AP)
ADELAIDE---India s stand-in test captain Virat
Kohli scored 66 and Murali Vijay added 60 as
the tourists played out a draw in the two-day
match against a Cricket Australia Chairman s
XI that concluded yesterday.
The match was organised on short notice to
give the Indian players some much-needed match
practice ahead of the first Test against Australia
which begins Tuesday at the Adelaide Oval.
The four-Test series had initially been due to
begin in Brisbane this week but had been resched-
uled following the death of Australia batsman
Playing at the Glenelg Oval in suburban Ade-
laide, the Australian team batted first and scored
243 while India replied with 375 in its first innings.
The Chairman s XI was 83-5 in its second innings
Vijay and Kohli, who both retired to give other
batsmen time in the crease, shared a 123-run
stand, steadying India s innings after the visitors
were 36-2 late on the opening day.
Vijay took one bouncer on the body that flicked
up and hit the helmet, but composed himself
Hughes died last Thursday, two days after being
hit in the head from a short-pitched delivery
during a domestic first-class match at the Sydney
Cricket Ground. (AP)
India tour match
ends in a draw
with Australia XI
Angelo Mathews (captain), Tillakaratne
Dilshan, Kusal Perera, Kumar
Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene,
Lahiru Thirimanne, Ashan Priyanjan,
Jeevan Mendis, Rangana Herath,
Dilruwan Perera, Lakshan Sandakan,
Dhammika Prasad, Suranga Lakmal,
Thisara Perera, Lahiru Gamage, Ajantha
New Zealand 144-8 (Kane Williamson
32, Luke Ronchi 31; Umar Gul 2-24,
Shahid Afridi 2-33) vs Pakistan 127 in
18.5 overs (Ahmed Shehzad 33, Shahid
Afridi 28; James Neesham 3-25, Kyle
New Zealand won by 17 runs.
Anton Devcich won the Man of the Match award for his 21 and 2 for 16.
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