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AB de Villiers shatters record for quickest ODI 150 as South Africa smash West Indies for 408

Cricket World Cup 2015: De Villiers hits a brilliant unbeaten 162 from just 66 balls including 30 off the final over

AB de Villiers flayed West Indies with a brilliant unbeaten 162 from just 66 balls to drive South Africa to an imposing 408 for five in their World Cup Pool B clash on Friday.

The Proteas skipper utilised his full repertoire of strokes in an awesome display of batting, peppering the boundaries at a sun-bathed Sydney Cricket Ground with eight sixes and 17 fours in a 104-minute innings that will live long in the memory.

He shared stands of 134 runs with Rilee Rossouw (61), another of 48 with David Miller (20) and a third of 80 with Farhaan Behardien (10) to turn around his country’s innings after West Indies had made a promising start to the match.

By the end of his knock, the crowd were on their feet chanting “AB!, AB!, AB!” as the 31-year-old, who reached his century with a six from the 52nd ball he faced, accelerated towards the finishing line.

His 64-ball 150 is also the fastest in one-day international history.

South Africa were desperate to kickstart their campaign after their 130-run defeat to India and De Villiers had given them every chance of doing so by the time he walked of the field.

West Indies, charged with confidence after their defeat of Zimbabwe on Tuesday, had initially looked a completely different side to the rabble that lost their tournament opener to Ireland.

Skipper Jason Holder and to a lesser extent Jerome Taylor got menacing bounce off the wicket with the new ball and opener Quinton de Kock (12) departed in the sixth over.

Hashim Amla (65) and Faf du Plessis (62) then put together a second wicket partnership of 127 but the disciplined West Indies kept up the pressure.

Amla smashed a huge six to bring up his half century off 75 balls, though, and Du Plessis almost matched the feat for his fifty only for the ball to fall just short of the boundary rope.

West Indies desperately needed a breakthrough and it fell to Chris Gayle, whose innings of 215 fired the Zimbabwe victory, to provide it in the 30th over.

Du Plessis was brilliantly caught behind by Denesh Ramdin off an edge and two balls later Amla was trapped lbw, Gayle celebrating reducing the South Africans to 146-3 with a dance down the wicket.

That brought Rossouw and De Villiers to the middle and they wasted no time in taking the game to their opponents, rattling up a fifty partnership in just over half an hour from 39 balls.

Rossouw, brought into the side in place of JP Duminy, also brought up his half century with a flourish, slapping a rising delivery into the grandstand for a six.

De Villiers took one fewer delivery than Roussow to reach his fifty in 30 balls but reached the milestone in more punishing style with a six, a four and another four in successive deliveries off Sulieman Benn.

It was only a taster of what was to come.


Yuvraj sparks IPL bidding war, goes to Daredevils for record Rs 16 crore

Indian left-hander Yuvraj Singh was bought by the Delhi Daredevils for a whopping Rs 16 crore. But in a big surprise, there were no takers for South African opener Hashim Amla after the first round of bidding for marquee players in the IPL auction on Monday.

The Indian Premier League (IPL) auction ahead of the eighth season got under way here Monday.

A bidding war between Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) and the Daredevils saw Yuvraj’s price sky-rocket.

Finally, it was the Delhi franchise that went for the jugular and bid Rs 16 crore for the batsman, who was left out of the India squad for the World Cup.

Incidentally, RCB had let go of Yuvraj, the most expensive buy of the last IPL auction, after buying him for Rs.14 crore last time around.

Delhi Daredevils also snapped up Sri Lankan ODI captain Angelo Mathews for Rs.7.50 crore.

Former Chennai Super Kings (CSK) opener Murali Vijay with a base price of Rs.50 lakh was bought by Kings XI Punjab for Rs.3 crore.

Earlier, Amla, with a base price of Rs.200 lakh, was the first player to go under the hammer but remained unsold.

Amla, who is currently on national duty with South Africa in the World Cup, averages an incredible 55.93 in 108 One-Day Internationals (ODI) played.

He has scored 19 hundreds and 27 fifties with a highest score of 153 out. He also has 23 Test centuries to his name and averages 52.78 in the longest format of the game.

He has played 26 Twenty20 internationals, scoring 600 runs at an average of 25.

ipl bidding

World Cup tracker

Imran Khan tells Pakistan that India defeat can be ‘blessing in disguise’, Pakistan’s World Cup winning captain Imran Khan had some words of comfort for the depressed team, who lost their sixth world cup match in a row to India. Pakistanis shouldn’t get depressed over today’s loss to India. If performance is accurately analysed, the defeat can be blessing in disguise

Leaving out Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh for the World Cup was a blunder: Abdul Qadir

Pakistan’s former leg-spinner Abdul Qadir has said the Indian selectors have “committed a blunder” by ignoring experienced cricketers Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh for the upcoming ODI World Cup.

According to Qadir, 59, the presence of Sehwag and Yuvraj would have given the team liberty to play with four regular bowlers.

“I was surprised to see that but Asian teams have this habit of committing blunders. If you have players like Sehwag and Yuvraj in the team, it not only pressurises the opposition bowlers but also gives the option of playing with four regular bowlers,” Qadir told PTI Bhasha.

While Sehwag set the tone for India’s triumphal march to the title in the 2011 World Cup with a scintillating century in the tournament opener in Dhaka, Yuvraj was awarded the Man of the Series for his all-round display.

“Yuvraj had bowled brilliantly in the last World Cup where he was also the player of the tournament. I would have also liked to see leg spinners like Amit Mishra and Piyush Chawla in the team since India does not have intimidating pace bowlers,” said the former chief selector of PCB.

Qadir feels only one Asian team will make the semifinals of the quadrennial extravaganza.

Grouped in Pool B, India and Pakistan will open their campaign when they lock horns on February 15.

“I think that Australia, New Zealand and South Africa will reach the last four and the last team will be from Asian subcontinent provided England does not give them serious competition,” Qadir said.

He said that the much-anticipated match between the arch-rivals will be the most crucial match of the tournament.

“The outcome of India-Pakistan match will decide their future in the tournament. It will boost the morale of the winning team and give an additional edge as well. It will surely be a final before the final,” Qadir added.

Qadir refused suggestions that India would have an upper hand over Pakistan considering the past record.

“It will be a new match and new tournament and both the teams have equal chance. Chasing will be an advantage at Adelaide and whoever wins the toss will enjoy that advantage,” he said.

Talking about the Indian team, he said it will be tired after the long Australia tour.

“Australia tour was beneficial as far as conditioning is concerned as they have got a chance to play at almost all the venues but Australia tour is always tiresome.

Indian players will be tired and they are also away from home for so long.

They must be missing home,” Qadir said.


ODI Tri-series, England v India: England beat India by 3 wickets to reach final

James Taylor revived England’s wobbly chase to lead them to a three-wicket victory over India on Friday which secured a place in the tri-series final against Australia.

Taylor (82) added 125 runs with Josh Buttler (67) for the sixth wicket to help England overcome a top-order collapse and chase down a 201-run victory target with 19 balls to spare.

It was, however, their disciplined bowlers who had laid the victory platform, shooting out India for 200 in 48.1 overs in what was effectively a semi-final at the WACA.

The wicket was not easy to bat on, as was evident in the 43rd over when James Anderson hit Mahendra Singh Dhoni flush on the helmet and, five balls later, struck the India captain below the knee-roll almost from same area to trap him lbw.

Barely two weeks before they start their World Cup defence, India would still be worried as only Ajinkya Rahane (73) shone with the bat in yet another capitulation.

Put into bat, Rahane added 83 with opening partner Shikhar Dhawan (38) in 20 overs before the wheels fell off the Indian innings.

Chris Woakes sent back Dhawan to get the breakthrough but it was Moeen Ali’s double strike — dismissing Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina — that broke the back of the Indian batting.

From 134 for three in 34 overs, India collapsed to 165 for nine in the next 10 overs. Even the 200-mark did not look a possibility until number 11 Mohammad Shami smacked 25 runs off 18 balls as India were dismissed in the 49th over.

England lost both openers early and looked in trouble as their first 66 runs cost them the top half of their batting order.

Taylor, beneficiary of a missed run-out chance, and Buttler, dropped by Raina in the slips on 21, arrested the slide and put the chase back on track with sensible batting.

Taylor and Buttler fell in quick succession to inject excitement to the contest but England’s victory never looked in any real doubt.

The final takes place in Perth on Sunday.


Don’t underestimate India after Test loss: Michael Hussey

Former Australian batsman Michael Hussey warned teams against underestimating India after their 0-2 loss in the Tests series and said the visitors will be a confident side when they start their title defence in next month’s World Cup.

“The big positive for India is that they have already been in Australia for the last two months. They are now well versed with the conditions here, the pace and bounce of pitches. They also have a tri-series coming up involving England. So they have a good run before the World Cup starts and nobody should underestimate them because of the Test results,” Hussey said.

“Don’t read too much into the 2-0 scoreline because not only did India compete hard in the Test series but they are a completely different outfit in limited-overs. They are very confident in that mode,” he added.

India lost the four-Test series against Australia after going down in the first two matches.

Talking about India’s performance, Hussey said the visitors’ batting line did well but the bowling lacked disciplined.

“Well the batting has completely changed and they have done well. Virat Kohli is a fantastic player and he has just scored runs by the heaps. I think this will continue for him going forward,” said Hussey, who was part of the Australian team during India’s 2011 tour.

“But then there have been others too, like Murali Vijay and Ajinkya Rahane, giving support to Kohli. Something like that was missing in the 2011 tour. Not to mention they have been able to unearth a talent like KL Rahul. It is quite an achievement for a youngster to come to Australia and get a maiden Test ton.

“I dare say that this Indian attack looks better than the one in 2011 and they are all good bowlers individually. But there is a difference between being a good bowler and bowling good. And they have bowled poorly, lacking in discipline throughout the series. However I also do believe that this series will serve as great exposure for them and they can learn a lot from this tour for the future.”

Gayle cries victimisation over dropping Bravo, Pollard

Cricketer Chris Gayle has accused the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) of victimisation after key all-rounders Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard were left out of the country’s World Cup squad.

The powerful left-handed opener was left flabbergasted by the axing of the pair, which he feels has little to do with their performance on the pitch.

Bravo, who was captain of the team, and Pollard were seen as leading the player revolt in India that forced the abandonment of the West Indies tour to the country last October after a pay dispute with the WICB.

“There’s no way you can tell me those guys shouldn’t be in the team,” Gayle told reporters. “For me it’s got to be victimisation towards those two guys. Come on guys, it’s just ridiculous. Honestly, it choked me up.”

The players had been told they would be left out of the World Cup team as the country was building a team for the future, though, as Gayle points out, the timing is odd going into a major tournament.

Batting and bowling weakened
“Bravo said to me the team they selected is to build for the next World Cup, which I can’t understand,” he said. “What they’re telling us then, is this team selected is not going there to win the World Cup.

“Building for the next World Cup is ridiculous. I cannot understand what Bravo told me.”

Gayle added the team would be weakened by the loss of the pair both in the batting and bowling departments.

“I don’t know where our cricket is heading with this sort of situation. It’s really sad,” Gayle said.

The duo have helped West Indies win the Twenty20 series in South Africa where they lead 2-0 going into Wednesday’s final match in Durban.

Gayle-force win
In the wake of their second consecutive loss to a Gayle-fuelled West Indies T20 team at the Wanderers on Sunday, Proteas captain Faf du Plessis lauded the efforts of the talismanic left-hander.

“It’s very hard to contain Chris Gayle when he’s playing like that,” said Du Plessis after his side went 2-0 down in the three-match T20I series.

“He’s just a cut above the rest. The other guys are dangerous players, but without him they’d be a normal team. He makes them a superhuman team.”

The Proteas were unable to defend their total of 231 for seven in their allotted 20 overs, as Gayle blasted 90 from 41 balls helping the West Indies achieved the highest successful run chase in T20 international cricket.

Earlier, Du Plessis had notched up the highest score by a South African in the format, with 119 from 56 balls, as the hosts posted a formidable total.

The 30-year-old, however, said he always knew the West Indies would produce a strong reply.

“I told the guys that they were going to get close to this score. It’s just the batting line-up they have and the way they set up their innings. With a score like that, they will pretty much hit from ball one and they have the hitting ability to do that. They blasted us once again on a good wicket.”

Du Plessis, missing out to Gayle for the man-of-the-match award, said his century in a losing cause was not what he had envisioned.

“I joked that it’s heartbreaking when you score your first T20 hundred and you don’t even get a crack at the man of the match. It would’ve been so much sweeter if we won the game. Although I’m very proud of my efforts today, losing the game makes it bittersweet.”

Abbot record
Bowler Kyle Abbott notched up an unenviable record on the night – the most runs conceded by a bowler in T20Is with his 1/68 off four overs.

However, his captain said he should not read too much into being the target of the West Indian assault.

“It’s never nice to go for a lot runs but, as a bowler, Abbott understands T20 cricket is there for the bowler to get a beating. He will be disappointed in his performance tonight, but it’s the name of the game.

Live Cricket Score, India vs Australia, 4th Test, Day 1: India struggle as Australia score 348/2 on Day 1

India struggle as Australia score 348/2 on Day 1 . Indian bowlers struggled throughout the day as Australia’s top-four hammered a listless attack. David Warner smashed his third ton of the series, while Chris Rogers fell short of a well-deserved one. Skipper Steve Smith and Shane Watson are unbeaten in the middle, and looking set for individual hundreds.



New Zealand takes commanding 310-run lead over Sri Lanka

Kane Williamson and B.J. Watling batted New Zealand back into the second cricket test against Sri Lanka on Tuesday, combining for an unbroken 286-run partnership to give the hosts a commanding 310-run lead at tea on the fourth day.

Williamson and Watling transformed the match in a record sixth-wicket partnership that had lasted 415 minutes by tea, guiding New Zealand to 445-5 after the hosts’ top order collapsed a day earlier. New Zealand is aiming to sweep the two-match series after winning the first test by eight wickets in Christchurch.

Williamson made 190 and Watling 118 at tea.

Just as Kumar Sangakkara had tipped the match in Sri Lanka’s favour with his 203 in the first innings, Watling and Williamson swung the match back in favour of the home side.

The last New Zealand batsman to fall was Jimmy Neesham in the 61st over six overs before tea on the third day.

The highest winning run chase in the fourth innings of a test at the Basin Reserve was Pakistan’s 277 in 2003, and Sri Lanka will have to break new ground to beat that mark and save the series.

Williamson’s performance on Tuesday was a feat of concentration and of technique. Though he was nearly dismissed at 60 when he was dropped at fine leg by Nuwan Pradeep, he succeeded in blunting the threat of the Sri Lanka bowlers who once had New Zealand on 122-4.

By tea, he had been at the wicket since the 27th over of the New Zealand innings, when it was 75-1, and had batted 556 minutes. The 24-year-old went to the break only two runs short of his highest test score of 192, which he made against Pakistan in the third test in the United Arab Emirates in November.

Watling’s century ended a dry spell for the South African-born wicketkeeper. He made his most-recent century (124) against India last February and has only twice passed 50 in 12 innings since then. He had previous scores of 26 and 11 in the current series.

Spinner Rangana Herath had bowled 52 overs by tea, and had 1-128.


Scoreboard at tea Tuesday on the fourth day of the second cricket test between New Zealand and Sri Lanka at the Basin Reserve-

Tom Latham c Jayawardene b Pradeep 35

Kane Williamson not out 190

Ross Taylor b Herath 0

Brendon McCullum lbw b Prasad 22

Jimmy Neesham lbw b Pradeep 19

B.J.Watling not out 118

Extras (4b,7lb,4w,6nb) 21

TOTAL (for 5 wickets) 445

Overs- 157. Batting time- 673 minutes.

Fall of wickets- 1—75, 2—78, 3—79, 4—122, 5—159.

Still to bat- Mark Craig, Doug Bracewell, Tim Southee, Trent Boult.

Bowling- Suranga Lakmal 29—4—74—0 (1w), Nuwan Pradeep 33—4—100—3 (1w,5nb), Rangana Herath 52—8—128—1, Dhammika Prasad 26—1—89—1 (1w,1nb), Angelo Mathews 11—3—29—0, Lahiru Thirimanne 6—1—14—0 (1w).

Toss- Sri Lanka.

Series- New Zealand leads the two—match series 1—0.

Umpires- Steve Davis, Australia, and Richard Illingworth, England.

TV umpire- Bruce Oxenford, Australia. Match referee- Chris Broad,

Australia score 242/2 at tea on Day 1 of SCG Test

Shane Watson and Steven Smith Steven were batting on 10 and 28 respectively at the break.

Australia made 242 for two at tea on the opening day of the fourth and final cricket Test against India at the SCG on Tuesday.

Shane Watson and Steven Smith Steven were batting on 10 and 28 respectively at the break.

Brief Scores:

Australia: 242/2 in 60 overs (David Warner 101, Chris Rogers 95; Ravichandran Ashwin 1—55, Mohammed Shami 1—49).