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India vs Australia, 4th Test: The approaching milestones | Cricket News

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NEW DELHI: With the 4 Test series between India and Australia locked at 1-1, there’s everything to play for for both teams in the fourth and final Test in Brisbane, which starts on Friday.
If the match produces a result, the winner will walk away with the Border Gavaskar Trophy.
While that is the big prize that both teams will fight tooth and nail for, there are multiple individual milestones that are also approaching and can be crossed in the Test at the Gabba.

Here’s a comprehensive look at all the personal milestones that are approaching for players in both teams and can possibly be crossed in the Brisbane Test:
* Cheteshwar Pujara needs 88 runs to complete 1000 runs against Australia in Australia. He has 912 runs in 10 Tests (19 innings) to his name so far
* Pujara needs 188 runs also to complete 2000 runs in the Border-Gavaskar series. The Saurashtra batsman has played 19 Tests (35 innings) and scored 1812 runs at an average of 54.90, including 5 centuries and 9 fifties so far in the bilateral series
* Stand in India captain Ajinkya Rahane needs 177 runs to complete 1000 runs against Australia in Australia. He has 823 runs in 11 Tests (21 innings) to his name so far
* Rahane meanwhile also has 2917 Test runs, batting overseas, in 41 Tests (73 innings). He is 83 runs behind the landmark of 3000 Test runs overseas

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* Rahane also needs just 78 runs to complete 1000 runs in the ICC World Test Championships. The right-hander has 922 runs in 12 matches (20 innings) to his name so far
* Rohit Sharma needs 106 runs to complete 1000 Test runs batting overseas. He has 894 runs in 19 Tests (35 innings) while batting overseas so far
* R Ashwin needs 11 wickets to complete 100 wickets against Australia (overall). He has claimed 89 wickets in 18 Tests vs the Aussies so far
* Ashwin also needs 11 wickets to complete 50 wickets against Australia in Australia. He has 39 wickets in 10 Tests so far Down Under
* The Brisbane Test will be Nathan Lyon’s 100th Test match for Australia. He will become the 13th Australian to play 100 or more Tests for the country
* Lyon also needs 4 wickets to complete 400 Test scalps. He has 396 wickets in 99 Tests so far. He is currently the third-highest Test wicket-taker for Australia after Shane Warne (708 wickets) and Glenn McGrath (563 wickets)
* Josh Hazlewood needs 5 wickets to complete 50 wickets against India (overall). He has 45 Test wickets against India in 14 matches so far
* Mitchell Starc needs 10 wickets to complete 50 wickets against India in Tests. He currently has 40 wickets in 14 Tests against India
* Tim Paine needs 168 runs to complete 1000 runs as an Australian Test captain. He has 832 runs to his name in 22 Tests (35 innings) so far as skipper.


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Ashwin ready to shave half moustache if Pujara goes over the top against any spinner in England series | Cricket News

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NEW DELHI: India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin has challenged teammate Cheteshwar Pujara to step down the track and go over the top against any spinner in the upcoming Test series against England.
In a conversation with India’s batting coach Vikram Rathour on his official YouTube channel, Ashwin said he will shave half his moustache and come out to play if Pujara completes the challenge.

It started with Ashwin asking the batting coach, “Will we ever see Pujara hit an off-spinner over the top?”
“Work-in-progress. I’m trying to convince him that at least once go over the top. He is still not convinced, He is giving me great reasons,” Rathour replied.

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“If he goes over the top against Moeen Ali or any other spinner stepping down the wicket in this English series that we gonna play, I will take half my mustache out and come to play the game. This is an open challenge,” Ashwin said jokingly.
“That’s a great challenge to put across. Let’s hope that he takes it up. I don’t think he will take it up,” Rathour said.
Pujara was recently seen in action in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia. The batsman’s grit and determination was there for everyone to see in the final Test as he stood tall even after receiving numerous body blows.

Often criticised for his defensive approach, Pujara batted like a warrior in the fourth Test against Australia last week. He took blows to the body, fingers, and head, but did not flinch. He stood tall, defying the Australia bowlers who looked for one opportunity to break into the Indian lower-order.
“Because for some reason you really sledge him. I don’t know why. What the deal there? You really go after him all the time. And him being one of my favourite players in the team. I love his attitude. The way he bats, the way he prepares actually he is a coach’s dream actually. So, I have to defend him against you. I think no praise is enough for the way he batted in the last Test match. The way he responded to all those short balls and all injuries that he had,” Rathour said.
Ashwin explained why he sledges Pujara in the team, he said, “Because what happens is, every time an opponent like Nathan Lyon is bowling, Pujji makes it so heart throbbing for me. Every time the ball goes up in the air, I am like ‘You know what? Nobody plays like this man. You are making him look like unplayable.’ And eventually, everybody will think that I’m not able to make the other batsmen bat like this.”

“He does not. I mean, he handles him really, really well. And the numbers show that. he is averaging 50 plus against him. So, he has done well against him and that’s his way of playing. … He has a very set method. He is a stubborn character and that is his strength as well,” Rathour said.
Both Ashwin and Pujara will now be seen in action in the four-match Test series against England. The first Test is set to begin in Chennai on February 5.


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World Test Championship final dates reworked, to take place from June 18-22

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The start of the inaugural World Test Championship final has been pushed back by eight days and will now begin at Lord’s on June 18, keeping in mind the proximity with the next IPL‘s summit showdown. The final of the inaugural championship was tentatively scheduled to begin on June 10 at the iconic venue in London.

However, since the Indian Premier League final is also expected to be played around the same dates, it could have complicated the quarantine schedule of the participating players.

“The WTC Final will now be played from June 18-22 and June 23 will be the reserve day. As background we pushed it back to allow for any quarantine that may be imposed, particularly given the close proximity to the end of the IPL and the original dates) so driven by quarantine,” a BCCI source told .

The IPL schedule has not been finalised as yet but it is expected to conclude towards the end the May.

There is a close fight between India, Australia and New Zealand to compete for the title. India are leading the table with 430 points (PCT 71.7), followed by New Zealand (420, PCT 70) and Australia (332, PCT 69.2).

India recently jumped to the top of the table, following their 2-1 win in the four-match series in Australia.



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Bale must battle to earn his place, says Spurs coach Mourinho | Football News

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LONDON: Gareth Bale must earn his place in the Tottenham team on the training pitch and will not be picked so he can boost his match fitness, said manager Jose Mourinho.
The 31-year-old Wales international is back at Spurs on a season-long loan deal from Real Madrid.
But the forward, hampered by fitness issues, has mostly been confined to Europa League games, playing just 45 minutes of Premier League football since early November.
Bale came on in the FA Cup third-round win over non-league Marine earlier this month and may get more time on the pitch in the fourth-round clash against Championship side Wycombe later on Monday.
But Mourinho said playing time was not a gift.
“I cannot give players minutes,” said the Portuguese manager. “Minutes on the pitch is not something that I can give.
“I am going in this direction. We all know the difficulties he had in the last couple of seasons, we all know that he arrived injured and we all know that even this season a little bit up and down with small things.”
Bale is desperate for game time, with Wales involved in the European Championships, due to start in June.
“The most important thing for him is to be consistent (in) training without problems,” said Mourinho.
“When a player is consistently training at high intensity without any problems then the player is ready — not to be given minutes but is ready to earn minutes and that is a different thing.”


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