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Update: ICC Champions Trophy 2017 - Fixtures & News updates
#1
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Fixtures:

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-20.jpg]
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#2
Squads:

Australia

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-26.jpg]

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Bangladesh

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-28.jpg]


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England

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-29.jpg]

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India

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-30.jpg]
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#3
New Zealand

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-32.jpg]

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Pakistan

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-33.jpg]

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South Africa

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-35.jpg]

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Sri Lanka

[Image: screenshot-www.espncricinfo.com_2017-05-26_09-36.jpg]

Credit: Espncricinfo..
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#4
Warm-up Matches:

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#5
Champions Trophy 2017: Virat Kohli & Anil Kumble Unhappy With Training Facilities


Birmingham: The Indian cricket team is unhappy with practice facilities at the Edgbaston Cricket Ground with both coach Anil Kumble and skipper Virat Kohli expressing their displeasure with the local authorities.

Thursday was India's first training day in Birmingham and they were allocated the practice arena adjacent to the main stadium.

However both Kohli and Kumble had reservations as the arena was small in size. The main issue was the run-up for fast bowlers.

It was learnt that the likes of Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami and Hardik Pandya, all of whom have a 30-yard run-up, couldn't bowl full tilt at the nets as the distance wasn't big enough.

This irked the captain and the coach as they sent feelers through manager Kapil Malhotra to sort the issue out with Warwickshire (local county) authorities.

Apparently, the Indian team wanted to practice at the main arena but were denied a chance as Australia and New Zealand, who have a match, were given access to the main ground.

The Pakistan team also practised at the same ground but since they have been camping in Birmingham for the past week, have had access to the main practice arena.

India will only get a feel of the main turf on Saturday, prior to the marquee clash.

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#6
All-round India thump hapless Pakistan


4.5 overs into Pakistan's chase of 324 in 48 overs, rain intervened for third time during their much-awaited ICC Champions Trophy 2017 clash against arch rivals India in Birmingham. Pakistan's revised target was now 289 in 41 overs, and needed to score at around 7.5 runs every over hence.

For the next 17 overs, Pakistan could score more than that required run rate only twice. By then, Pakistan had lost their top three batsmen and the required rate had climbed to nearly 10 an over. Not surprisingly, they capitulated soon after and succumbed to a 124-run defeat in a rain-marred encounter.

It was a day of gross miscalculations for Pakistan as they got their Champions Trophy campaign off to a disastrous start. They had let the advantage slip when they contrived to bowl spinners to Virat Kohli when he'd just walked in. The conditions were crying out for a pacer who could trouble the India captain, but Sarfraz Ahmed stuck to his plans and opted to bowl Imad Wasim and Shadab Khan. The spin pair bowled well, but it also allowed Kohli to set himself a platform that he could exploit at the end.

Kohli, once he had got his eye in, had struggled to get the bowlers away in his typical free-flowing style. The long rain break did not help matters either, and Pakistan failed in trying to get him when he was at his most vulnerable. He did offer Pakistan a chance, but was given a reprieve that he made the most of. Kohli made up for a sluggish period before the death overs with some scintillating strokeplay in the end. Just like with Kohli, Pakistan also put down a straight-forward chance off Yuvraj Singh, and the left-hander also made them pay with a brutal 29-ball fifty.

In the 45th over, Kohli had crawled to 46 off 58 balls, and Pakistan looked set to restrict India to around 280-290. But the India captain combined with Yuvraj to wallop 72 runs off the last four overs to give India a mammoth total in their allotted 48 overs - 319 for 3.

Chasing an already tough target, Pakistan made matters tougher for themselves with some poor application and batting. The batsmen were neither willing to take risks nor capitalise on the fielding restrictions in place. Azhar Ali showed some intent, while Ahmed Shehzad struggled to get 12 off 22 balls as Pakistan scored at less than five an over.

It was almost as if they had resigned themselves to defeat seeing the tough target. Ali notched up a fifty, but scored at a strike rate of just above 75. Mohammad Hafeez, during his 43-ball stay, too struck at a similar rate. Shoaib Malik, who walked in at No. 5, seemed more attuned to the situation before he was run out thanks to a brilliant fielding effort by Ravindra Jadeja.

At 131 for 5 in the 27th over, the match was as good as over. Sarfraz Ahmed (15) and Shadab Khan (14) were the only other batsmen to get into double digits as Pakistan folded for 164, handing India a massive 124-run win.

The result may suggest an overwhelmingly one-sided affair, but until Yuvraj and Kohli exploded, there was parity. Pakistan's bowlers, barring the woefully out-of-form Wahab Riaz, had kept the Indian batters in check. But to India's credit, none of the batsmen in the top order yielded to the pressures of not scoring quickly and throwing their wickets away.

Rohit Sharma was not his usual self. He was tested by a tight first over from Mohammad Amir, and was found himself struggling for large periods of his knock. At the other end, however, Shikhar Dhawan ensured his partner was not under too much pressure by stroking a quick-fire half century off 48 balls. The left-hander was out, hitting a full toss from Shadab Khan to deep mid wicket, for 68 off 65, but his opening alliance of 136 (24.3 overs) with Rohit Sharma had given India its base.

Rohit was run out on 91 (119 balls) after his dive at the striker's end resulted in the bat bouncing while the keeperr broke the stumps, but it gave India the chance to unleash Yuvraj on the opposition. The left-hander looked in great touch, combining finesse and power to crack a fifty off just 29 balls and take the game further away from Pakistan.

Buoyed by his senior partner's efforts, Kohli too went berserk. He slammed 36 off his last 11 balls, ending the innings not out on 81, while Hardik Pandya applied the finishing touches with three consecutive sixes off the last over.

For Pakistan, it was a day to forget, and something that was exacerbated by injuries to two frontline bowlers. Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz had walked off the field during the final stages with leg injuries. That maybe a cause for worry for Pakistan, but after their performance on Sunday (June 4), the side will look at pressing the reset button and ticking the boxes one by one.

Brief scores: India 319/3 in 48 overs (Rohit Sharma 91, Virat Kohli 81, Shikhar Dhawan 68, Yuvraj Singh 53; Shadab Khan 1-52) beat Pakistan 164 in 33.4 overs (Azhar Ali 50, Mohammad Hafeez 33; Umesh Yadav 3-30, Ravindra Jadeja 2-43, Hardik Pandya 2-43) by 124 runs (DLS method).

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#7
England Thump New Zealand by 87 Runs To Enter Semis


London: Mark Wood took the key wicket of Kane Williamson as England booked their place in the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy with an 87-run win over New Zealand at Cardiff on Tuesday.

New Zealand, set 311 for victory, finished on 223 all out with 39 balls left.

They were in the hunt while captain Williamson, fresh from a hundred in the Blackcaps' opening rain-marred no result against Australia, was making 87.

But fast bowler Wood made the key breakthrough to dismiss the star batsman.

Then, as happened after Williamson's departure against Australia, the Blackcaps lost a cluster of wickets.
Wood's fellow paceman Jake Ball was named man-of-the-match for a miserly return of two for 31 in eight overs up front.

Victory saw England into the last four of a tournament featuring the world's top eight one-day international sides after an eight-wicket defeat of Bangladesh at the Oval last week, regardless of the result of their last Group A match against arch-rivals Australia at Edgbaston on Saturday.

Two years ago, New Zealand thrashed England by eight wickets on home soil at the 2015 World Cup in Wellington.

But this decisive win was a measure of England's progress in the 50-over format since that chastening defeat.

England were in danger of falling short of 300 after Joe Root (64), Alex Hales (56) and Ben Stokes (48) all got out when well set.

But Jos Buttler's dashing unbeaten 61 helped take them to 310 all out.

New Zealand lost their first wicket just four balls into their innings when Luke Ronchi was clean bowled for a golden duck by Ball.

Martin Guptill (27) and Williamson dug in before the former edged an intended drive off all-rounder Stokes to Root at a wide slip.

Both Williamson, posting his fifth fifty in as many ODIs against England, and Taylor were hit on the helmet by fast bowler Liam Plunkett, who finished with four for 55.

But Williamson still drove Wood back over his head for four at a Cardiff ground rivalling Wellington as a windswept venue.

Taylor, without being at his fluent best, offered sound support in a stand of 95.

- Wood strike -

England captain Eoin Morgan, shuffling his pack, recalled Wood and the Durham quick duly delivered the wicket his side badly needed when a rising ball took Williamson's glove and diving wicket-keeper Buttler clung on to the catch.

It was the end of Williamson's 98-ball innings featuring eight fours.

And when Taylor (39) holed out off Ball to midwicket, New Zealand were 168 for four in the 34th over.
Jimmy Neesham hit a six off Plunkett but fell next ball when he found Hales in the deep.

Leg-spinner Adil Rashid justified his selection in place of the injured Chris Woakes with two for 47 in 10 overs, with Plunkett ending the match when Tim Southee was caught at deep midwicket.

After just 30 minutes' play, the match was halted at 11:00am local time (1000 GMT) as a national minute's silence in memory of the victims of Saturday's terror attack in London was observed.

Jason Roy hit Adam Milne for four to go to 13 but was then bowled round his legs by the pacemen.

His exit meant the struggling Surrey opener had managed just 47 runs in his last seven innings at this level.

Root, fresh from his career-best 133 not out against Bangladesh, twice drove left-arm spinner Mitchell Santner for six.

Hales slapped Milne high over long-off before he was bowled next ball by Milne.

Root, deprived of the strike during a stand of 54 with Stokes, saw his innings end when he played on trying to carve Anderson, while Stokes uppercut Trent Boult straight to Milne at third man.

Buttler extravagantly 'flicked' Boult for six and flat-batted another off Milne.

Plunkett joined in by pulling Milne for a six that brought up England's 300.

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#8
The damp, soggy English weather is turning the Champions Trophy into a farce

[Image: ca3d8493218bd855ef2b967382ea7d71]

Damp, soggy, muggy, call it what you may, but England in the first half of June seems to hardly be the time to play cricket, or at least a high profile tournament like the ICC Champions Trophy.

Rain once again played spoilsport as Australia narrowly missed out on what was victory in the bag against a Bangladesh outfit, that was thoroughly outplayed.

Chasing Bangladesh’s modest target, Australia ended up four overs short of making a result in the according to the Duckworth-Lewis system, despite being 44-runs ahead of the par-score.

The players were left twiddling their thumbs for at least three hours as officials and ground staff scurried around to get a game, even as the rain tumbled down. The game was eventually called off, denying Australia a win and keeping Bangladesh’s hopes of progressing in the tournament alive.

This was Australia’s second straight washout of the tournament that has been marred by rain in three of the five games played so far. Forecast for the rest of the week is not very positive either.

But, there is hardly any solution. England in the first half of June is almost never dry. In 2013, the Champions Trophy, which was also held in England at almost the same juncture in the calendar, saw seven games being affected by rain.

One would have expected the ICC to learn from the experience, but that has not been the case. The experience has only raised questions over the way the tournament was scheduled and even the use of the highly controversial Duckworth-Lewis system that once again proved useless in a game that had a clear winner well before rain had a final say.

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#9
Australia pay the price for an undercooked middle order


England's victory over Australia at Edgbaston was, in many ways, a tale of two middle orders.

Australia came in to this game with none of their batsmen at five, six or seven having faced a ball in the tournament because of the two no-results in their previous games. Above them, Moises Henriques at number four had only faced 14 balls himself. And to compound matters, one of their warm-up games was also rained off without the middle order having a hit.

The weather has played havoc with Australia's competition, of that there can be no doubt, and it meant that when they needed their middle order to fire them to a winning score today after Aaron Finch and Steve Smith had set a good platform, they had nobody in match form or rhythm who could do so. In all, they lost wickets three to seven for just 84 runs.

Contrast that to England's middle order. The partnership between Eoin Morgan and Ben Stokes, worth 159 runs, was a stunning riposte to the early aggression of Australia's bowlers and Jos Buttler, albeit via a let off when Glenn Maxwell missed a sitter at gully, scored at almost a run a ball to make sure England were well above the par score on DLS when the rain came and ended proceedings. All three of them had made a score in the tournament before this game - Stokes and Morgan had scored runs in the South African series too - so they had both confidence and time in the middle behind them.

Despite a lack of time in the middle, Smith was reluctant to use that as an excuse for the performance of his batsmen: "We only had one hit, but that should be good enough for the players that we've got on our team. You know, we've got some good players in our line-up. I thought we let ourselves down a little bit today."

It is hard not to feel for Australia's predicament although it must be said they may have found it tough to go through even if the weather hadn't intervened in their previous two games. They would have beaten Bangladesh had the rain not come at The Oval but would probably have lost to New Zealand in their opener had the game gone the distance. That still would have given them the two points they ended up with. Yet the rain, and the resulting lack of game time clearly meant their middle order in particular was ring rusty coming in to this encounter.

Some of the dismissals in that Australian middle order were symptomatic of players being undercooked. Henriques miss-hit a half-volley from Rashid straight to mid-on and Glenn Maxwell at six looked less than his usual fluent self - as did Smith - reaching 20 off 31 balls before pulling Mark Wood to Jason Roy at deep midwicket who took an excellent juggling catch on the boundary.

It didn't stop there. Matthew Wade at seven got a leading edge to a regulation delivery from Rashid which ended up going straight back to the bowler and Mitchell Starc at eight was caught attempting to nudge a full-toss in to the leg-side.

Australia didn't help themselves with their selection either. Henriques, who is yet to reach 20 in nine ODI innings, is clearly not a number four at international level and the error of that decision was further highlighted by the assured performance of Travis Head at number five as he made an unbeaten half-century. Australia were keen to play an all-rounder in this tournament, hence the selection of Henriques, but they haven't got the calibre of player to fill the role that high in the batting order. It proves just how valuable, and rare, a player like Stokes is, someone who would be worth their position in the side purely as a batsman or a bowler.

Yet it was the contrasting demeanour of the players which gave most clues as to their respective moods. Where England's middle order oozed confidence and positive intent - even when Australia had reduced them to 35 for 3, Morgan was walking down the wicket to Josh Hazelwood - the majority of Australia's batsmen, with the exception of the openers, looked timid and uncertain on a very flat pitch. There were plenty of swipes of the bat and shakes of the head when shots didn't end up where they wanted them to, which suggested they were battling their own games as well as England's bowlers. Australia simply never got going.

It was a frustrating day and it has been a frustrating tournament for Smith's team who, it must be remembered, were one of the favourites at the start of the competition. Tomorrow, they will be on a plane home whereas England, and their dynamic middle order, press on.

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#10
Disciplined Indian pacers asphyxiate South Africa to 191


India's mood at half-time was best described by Rohit Sharma's crowd catch in the 44th over when Imran Tahir bumped a drive into the ground before the ball reached the man at cover. The shoulders that looked droopy at the end of their clash against Sri Lanka was back at its place, much because of some unrelenting discipline from India's pacers to begin with before Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja tightened the noose by taking turns in the middle overs. Despite a 76-run opening stand, South Africa had to deal with a premature close as they were bottled up for just 191 in just under 45 overs, losing eight wickets for the last 51 runs.

While all cricket pundits and sundry called for flamboyance and panache to sink the opponents, India opted for conservatism. Right from winning the toss to field - something that brewed from their loss against Sri Lanka - to going back to their traditional strength by calling for Ashwin for the first time in the tournament, India played safe in the high-stakes battle.

As has the Champions Trophy been in England so far, there was hardly any semblance of movement when Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah took the new ball. However, sticking to tidy channels, the Indian pace duo ensured a slow start for the Proteas. There was a chance early when Virat Kohli had a shy from mid off but an ill-directed throw ensured Hashim Amla was safe. Quinton de Kock, who had been tied down, reminded India of his liking for their bowling as he hit a couple of fours in back to back overs to inject some pace in the chain of events.

Ashwin, who by now wasn't a stranger to being drafted into the eleven late in the tournament, was brought in as early as in the 10th over. The offspinner played his first game of the 2011 World Cup against the Windies, a game preceding the quarterfinal clash against Australia where he opened the bowling. The offspinner's reading of the surface was on show almost immediately as he bowled slower through the air to make the most of the dry wicket.

While Hardik Pandya was erratic in the lines and lengths he pursued, he let go off a caught and bowled chance when Amla (16) hit one straight back at him. The South African opener wasn't to last long as the canny Ashwin set him up beautifully with a flighted ball first which went for four, before hitting back with a quick, short ball that caught Amla off guard. Trying to jab it from the crease, Amla nicked it to the keeper. De Kock completed yet another fifty but in the following over, missed a sweep against Jadeja to be found plumb in front. Not just did de Kock fall for his lowest fifty-plus score against India, but the lack of sting in their scoring built the pressure on the Proteas.

Faf du Plessis and AB de Villiers showed more trust in the pace of the wicket by playing shots on the rise but in a bid to stamp their urgency, saw a wicket fall. De Villiers overestimated his recovery from the hamstring injury as he set off for a quick single following a dab from his partner on the off side. A sharp throw from Pandya combined with electric quick glovework from MS Dhoni ensured the skipper was well short of his ground. As if one indecision wasn't enough, David Miller got into a tangle with both batsmen running towards the same end. Despite a poor throw from Bumrah, South Africa lost another wicket in the most unfancied manner.

Pandya, who had not been anything special with his line or length, was given his first wicket when du Plessis tried to stab at a shortish ball away from the body, only to drag it back onto the stumps. By now, South Africa had lost three quick wickets for just 17 added to their score.

Duminy had survived an LBW shout off Jadeja before being almost run out by the same man, and the southpaw was the only one his team could turn to for valuable runs in the back ten. Bumrah returned to snap out Chris Morris and Andile Phehlukwayo in quick time, and the pace attack that bore the brunt following their last loss was back in news, this time for the better.

As common sense would have it, the on-song Bumrah started to run in from the top of his mark for another over, before captain Kohli quickly stopped him. Summoning Bhuvneshwar from the boundary line to come in for an over bore fruits as he removed Kagiso Rabada and Morne Morkel off back to back balls to sit on a hat-trick and reduce the Proteas to nine down. Although the hat-trick was averted, the South Africans couldn't save themselves from suffering their third run-out of the innings, before being shot out for less than 200.

Brief Scores: South Africa 191 in 44.3 overs (Quinton de Kock 53, Faf du Plessis 36; Bhuvneshwar Kumar 2-23, Jasprit Bumrah 2-28) vs India

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