World Cup Central: Zampa penalised for ‘audible obscenity’

World Cup Central – May 24 to June 5

June 7

Adam Zampa picked up a demerit point, along with an official warning, after on-field umpires Marais Erasmus and Chris Gaffaney, third umpire Ruchira Palliyaguruge and fourth official S Ravi reported him for “audible obscenity” during the Australia v West Indies game at Trent Bridge on June 6.

The incident took place in the 29th over of West Indies’ chase of Australia’s 288 – they fell short by 15 runs in the end – when Zampa was bowling to Shai Hope and Jason Holder.

Zampa, who sent back Nicholas Pooran on his way to figures of 1 for 58, admitted the offence and accepted the sanction handed out by match referee Jeff Crowe.

Defeat a ‘tough pill to swallow’ for West Indies

Shai Hope has admitted that defeat against Australia will be a “tough pill to swallow” but thinks that West Indies have sent out another reminder of what they are capable of at the World Cup.

Having rolled Pakistan for 105 in their opening match, West Indies had Australia 38 for 4 and 79 for 5 before they recovered to post 288 through impressive batting from Steven Smith (73) and Nathan Coulter-Nile (92). Still, in the chase West Indies were well placed on 190 for 4 in the 35th over before Hope’s wicket shifted the game back to Australia.

“Obviously it’s going to be a tough pill to swallow having basically been dominating the game for the majority of it then not being able to cross the line,” he said. “When you get wickets with the new ball you always put a team under pressure, it’s just unfortunate that we couldn’t drive it home and get the tail in a bit earlier. Australia are a quality side and showed us they can rebuild to post a different score.”

When asked if West Indies’ short-ball tactics had shown a vulnerability in Australia’s top order, Hope said: “I think so, yes, but regardless of what plan you throw at them sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t so you always have to be able to adapt to what they throw at you as well.”

June 6

Dhoni’s army gloves fall foul of ICC

The ICC has asked the BCCI to have the army logo removed off MS Dhoni‘s wicketkeeping gloves. It has been pointed out to the BCCI that the logo on the gloves contravenes the ICC clothing and equipment regulations, which allow only sponsor logos on them. ESPNcricinfo understands there is no fine or reprimand involved at the moment but the message has been made clear to the BCCI.

Dhoni is an honorary lieutenant colonel of the Parachute Regiment in the Indian territorial army. In India’s World Cup opener, against South Africa, Dhoni was seen keeping in gloves that sported the dagger insignia of Dhoni’s regiment of the Indian Para Special Forces. This particular insignia – “Balidaan”, meaning sacrifice – can only be worn by paramilitary commandos.

During possibly his last international match at his home ground in Ranchi, India played against Australia in army camouflage caps to pay respect to those armymen who lost their lives in the Pulwama terror attacks. The players’ earnings from the match went to the families of the martyrs. At that time the ICC cleared the jerseys “as part of charity fund-raising effort”.

That India-Australia series was not an ICC event. The World Cup is.

Imran Khan not a fan of “stupid” cricket celebrations

Before they left for the World Cup, one of the farewell meetings the Pakistan team had was with their Prime Minister. He is, of course, the only Prime Minister from among the teams in this competition who has won any World Cups. Actually to be more accurate, he is the only head of state from CWC 2019 to have played a dash of international cricket. When Imran Khan addressed an awed Pakistan squad, among his other pearls of wisdom was this one – to refrain from what he referred to as “stupid” wicket-celebrations. Hasan Ali’s starburst may have been the one that got his attention and unfortunately, there is no celebrato-meter to see if there ever was a dip in intensity following that particular remonstration. Not sure what the Wazir e Azam made of the madness at Trent Bridge.

Hendricks hopes to be South Africa’s lucky charm

Beuran Hendricks was sitting on his couch, watching TV when he got the call telling him he would be part of South Africa’s World Cup squad. He didn’t know then he would be Dale Steyn’s replacement, but admitted being overwhelmed on finding out that he was replacing arguably the greatest pacer his country had produced. Hendricks joined the squad a day prior to their clash against India, but didn’t make the XI. Now, as South Africa fight to stay alive, Hendricks hopes he is the “good luck the team needs.”

In December, Hendricks was part of the winning Jozi Stars in the Mzansi Super League. He also helped the Lions claim South Africa’s franchise first-class and T20 tournaments. In April, he was a a late call-up to the Mumbai Indians, who went on to win the IPL. Hendricks hopes some of his good fortunes can rub off on South Africa.

“It’s been a good year for me personally and for the teams I have been with this year so let’s hope I can make it five (trophies) out of five,” he said. “I am not going to say I can fill his shoes because its Dale. I come here with my own set of skills and my own ambition in this competition,” he said. “It’s just about making sure I can fight the good fight and contribute with the set of skills that I have.”

‘Faf’s wicket most special’ – Chahal after four-for

Yuzvendra Chahal‘s 4 for 51 against South Africa played a big role in India’s first win of the World Cup. What was most impressive about Chahal’s performance was the quality of the batsmen he dismissed: Rassie van der Dussen, Faf du Plessis, David Miller and Andile Phehlukwayo.

After the match, Chahal was asked by his spin partner Kuldeep Yadav on on his favourite scalp of the night, to which he promptly replied: “Faf du Plessis.”


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