India went seven points clear of England at the top of the ICC T20 rankings following their series win over Australia. The six-wicket win on Sunday improved their ranking by one point to 268, a seven-point lead over closest-placed England. The upcoming three-match series against South Africa will give India a chance to consolidate their lead at the top ahead of the World Cup. The Proteas occupy third place with 258 points. Incidentally it was Pakistan’s narrow three-run win over England in the game in Karachi on Sunday that helped India increase their lead. That series remains tied at two games apiece, with plenty of rankings points still to play for during the final three matches. Pakistan are currently tied with South Africa for third place on the team rankings with 258 points, but could rise as high as second by winning the remaining three matches against England.
Pakistan beat England in a thriller
Pakistan defeated England by three runs in the fourth ODI in Karachi on Sunday. Chasing 167, England were all out for 163 in 19. 2 overs. Earlier, in-form opener Mohammad Rizwan struck 88 to help Pakistan to 166-4. Rizwan's 67-ball knock had nine fours and a six after Pakistan were sent in to bat by England. Asif Ali smashed two sixes in the final over to give the total some respectability for Pakistan.
Sunil Chhetri to lead India’s 23-member squad
Sunil Chhetri will lead India’s 23-man squad for the Hung Thinh Friendly Football Tournament against Vietnam and Singapore. This will be the men’s team’s first international tournament since Fifa lifted their brief suspension on the All India Football Federation. The matches were earlier put in doubt. While Rahul Bheke, Suresh Singh, Glan Martins and Rahim Ali have not been selected after reportedly picking up injuries, coach Igor Stimac has left out defenders Pritam Kotal, Subhasish Bose and forward Manvir Singh for the friendlies. A list of 24 probables were named earlier. In an interview to AIFF, he said the door is not closed for any one from the list of 40 players he has to choose from. “Nobody has been excluded. My actual list contains of 40 players, and it is just because to the situation of the tournament that I can only choose 23 of them. My technical staff and I felt that this set of players were the best suited and most compatible for the two upcoming matches,” the 55-year-old said.
“This is how we learn more about the players. Of course I had meetings with all my players before this, I had communicated to them as to why we are going with this current list. Everyone who is not on the list knows why [they] aren’t on it. But everyone is preparing for March.”
Martin Guptill set to play 7th T20 World Cup
Batting stalwart Martin Guptill is set to play a record seventh T20 World Cup as New Zealand named a 15-member squad, led by Kane Williamson, for the ICC showpiece beginning in Australia on October 16. The 35-year-old batter found a place in the team, even as the Black Caps made three changes to the squad that featured in the final of the T20 World Cup last year. Finn Allen and Michael Bracewell will e representing in their first senior World Cup and the duo along with Lockie Ferguson will replace Kyle Jamieson, Todd Astle and Tim Seifert respectively, who were part of the last T20 World Cup squad. Two players who recently declined a central contract - Trent Boult and Jimmy Neesham also featured in the squad.
Bar on publication of ex-hockey India coach’s book
The Delhi High Court restrained Sjoerd Marijne, former coach of Indian women's hockey team, and Harper Collins Publishers India Private Limited from publishing any content on the medical condition of player Gurjit Kaur in his upcoming book. They are "restrained by an ad-interim injunction from publishing the subject book or any other matter incidental thereto or any other matter related to the subject book in so far as it relates to Gurjit Kaur's medical condition," as per the order of a division bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Amit Sharma. The development was followed by the appeal of Kaur who challenged the last week's single bench order that refused to stay the release of the book titled "Will Power: The Inside Story of the Incredible Turnaround in Indian Women's Hockey."