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India complete Windies rout as Umesh takes maiden 10-wicket haul

Anil Rajpurohit

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Hyderabad | A clinical India completed one of the most ruthless clean sweeps in recent times, demolishing a listless West Indies by 10 wickets in the second Test, inside three days, to clinch the series 2-0 on Sunday.

Umesh Yadav’s maiden 10-wicket haul (6/88 and 4/45) on a decent track was the highlight as India reached the meagre victory target of 72 in 16.1 overs, courtesy unbeaten partnership between openers Prithvi Shaw (33) and KL Rahul (33).

While any Test series victory is welcome, it hardly was an ideal preparation for the big away-series against Australia, starting December 4 in Adelaide.

West Indies were back to their worst despite showing signs of fight in the first innings as they couldn’t last two full sessions and were bowled out for 127 in only 46.1 in their second innings.

Out of the four innings in this series, West Indies couldn’t cross the 200-run mark thrice which was a testimony to their plight during the series.

For India, it was their 10th series win at home since their last defeat against England way back in 2012.

Virat Kohli’s side did an encore of 2013 series which India won by an identical margin in that year’s most lopsided contest with Sachin Tendulkar’s farewell taking limelight.

The second innings started with Yadav on split hat-trick but Kraigg Brathwaite (0) survived one delivery before gliding one into Rishabh Pant’s gloves.

Kieran Powell (6) edged one off Ravichandran Ashwin to Ajinkya Rahane in the slips.

Shai Hope (28) hit three delightful boundaries off Umesh while Shimron Hetmeyer (17) was trying to be more assertive against spinners in their 39-run stand.

However, a rush of blood saw Hetmeyer give Kuldeep Yadav the charge only to be caught by Cheteshwar Pujara at point.

From 45 for 3, there was not much resistance as Hope was snapped when he played a Ravindra Jadeja delivery for the turn to give Rahane his second catch.

West Indies’ biggest hope Roston Chase (6) got a sharp inswinger while Shane Dowrich (0) played on with Umesh getting his ninth wicket of the match.

The wicket had its share of wear and tear but it wasn’t a difficult track where surviving would be an arduous task. Yet, it was another instance of lack of application from the West Indies batsmen with opener Brathwaite and young Hetmeyer playing atrocious shots.

Jason Holder (19) and Sunil Ambris (38) added 38 runs for the seventh wicket but once Holder edged one to Pant off Jadeja, any chances of match going to fourth day slowly disappeared.

However, West Indies had started off well by dismissing India for 367, keeping the first innings lead down to a mere 56 runs.

In the process, they denied Rishabh Pant (92) and Ajinkya Rahane (80) from reaching their hundreds.

In a space of 16.1 overs, India lost five wickets for 25 runs to move from a comfortable 314 for 4 to 339 for 9 before Ravichandran Ashwin (35, 83 balls) made a useful contribution.

West Indies captain Jason Holder (5/56 in 23 overs) used the second new ball to good effect as he completed his fifth five-wicket haul in Test cricket. Shannon Gabriel after erratic performance on Saturday came back well to take 3/107 in 20.4 overs.

Holder first got one to rear up from back of length to shatter Rahane’s dreams of a 10th Test hundred. The Indian vice-captain was caught at gully for 80 off 183 balls to give the opposition captain his third wicket. His innings had seven boundaries.

Rahane-Pant duo added 152 runs for the fifth wicket and once the visitors got the breakthrough, the floodgates open.

Pant (92), who added seven more runs to his overnight score, got a short ball from Shannon Gabriel, which he pushed at only to be caught by Shimron Hetmeyer at cover point.

In two consecutive Tests, Pant has been dismissed for identical scores of 92. This time he played 134 balls hitting 11 boundaries and two sixes.

For the record, during the West Indies second innings, the new SG Test ball had to be changed twice inside 12 overs.

On Saturday, Mohammed Siraj and Hanuma Vihari were released to play Vijay Hazare quaryer-finals for their respective teams Hyderabad and Andhra.

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Let Pandya, Rahul play while inquiry is on: BCCI president urges CoA

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New Delhi | BCCI acting President C K Khanna on Saturday urged the Committee of Administrators (CoA) to lift the suspension on Hardik Pandya and K L Rahul for their much-criticised sexist remarks and refused to convene a Special General Meeting on the matter.

Khanna said calling the SGM to appoint an ombudsman to investigate the two players’ conduct, as demanded by Board officials, wouldn’t be right as the Supreme Court is due to take up the issue next week. Pandya and Rahul have been suspended pending an inquiry for their sexist comments on a TV chat show.

“They made a mistake, and they have already been suspended and called back from the series against Australia. They have also submitted an unconditional apology,” Khanna write in a letter to the Committee of Administrators (CoA) running the BCCI. “I suggest that pending inquiry we reinstate both the cricketers into the Indian squad immediately and allow them to join the team in New Zealand at the earliest,” he added.

The CoA wants the Supreme Court to appoint an ombudsman to decide the fate of the two players, who have already missed the ODI series against Australia and are set to sit out of the tour of New Zealand as well. They have also been thoroughly lambasted for their comments on hooking up with multiple women and joking about it on the show. Around 14 state units, mainly former BCCI president N Srinivasan’s loalists, had requested Khanna to convene an emergent SGM, which needs to be called in 10 days.

BCCI Treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry also wrote to Khanna requesting for an early SGM, so that board members can take a call on the appointment of ombudsman. “As per constitution of the BCCI, an ombudsman can be appointed at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). And moreover the matter (appointment of ombudsman) is already sub-judice,” Khanna replied to Chaudhry. Khanna also sought BCCI acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary’s view.

“Why would Khanna or Amitabh sign the notice for convening Special General Meeting when the matter is in Supreme Court. There would be a risk of Contempt of Court,” a senior BCCI official privy to the development told PTI on conditions of anonymity.

However, the official agreed that CoA chief Vinod Rai should have vetoed co-member Diana Edulji’s demand for provisional suspension and taken a call on quantum of suspension for the two suspended cricketers. “As per protocol, Mr Rai sought Diana’s suggestion but he could easily overrule her view of getting a legal opinion, which started this mess. He (Rai) could have easily done what he did in the women’s coach selection case,” the official observed.

The acting president urged the CoA and BCCI office-bearers to resolve the matter as soon as possible. “What Mr. Hardik Pandya said and Mr. K.L. Rahul acted as a by-stander to is inappropriate and absolutely wrong, but in my personal opinion, to treat them like lawbreakers is wrong too,” he wrote.

“Both these cricketers need game time before the World Cup which starts in four months time. We should give these growing cricketers chance to correct themselves morally,” he signed off.

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Women get lot of respect in other countries, but people don’t practise what they preach in India: PV Sindhu

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PV Sindhu

Hyderabad | Ace shuttler P V Sindhu on Friday noted that a lot of respect was given to women in foreign countries, but, in India, people do not practise what they preach.

Speaking at an event titled ‘SH(OUT) – Sexual Harassment Out: We are listening’, organised by the Hyderabad Police here, Sindhu said, “I feel really happy that there is lot of respect towards women in other countries, while in India, people actually tell us that we should respect women, but I think there are very rare people who actually practise it… who actually do it (respect). It’s just that they only say it and they don’t practise it.”

“I want to say and wish that everybody should respect others and especially women,” she said adding “women have to be strong and we have to believe ourselves as a woman we can do anything”.

Women who face sexual harassment, be it physical or mental harassment, should come forward and should not be ashamed of it, and they should talk about and speak about it, Sindhu stressed.

She said the #MeToo movement had brought lot of awareness about sexual harassment of women at workplace, adding that this movement educated both women and also men about the responsibilities towards the society.

Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar said that the vision of the initiative is to spread awareness across working women in all sectors on what amounts to sexual harassment and what measures are required to be taken for its prevention.

During the symposium, various provisions of the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition, and Redressal) Act, 2013, were explained to the delegates with specific inputs on role and responsibilities of the organisations; constitution and functions of internal complaints committee; and reporting and redressal mechanism for women employees.

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No one is more committed to Indian cricket than Dhoni: Kohli

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Melbourne | “No one is more committed to Indian cricket” than Mahendra Singh Dhoni and batting at number five is the ideal spot for him, said Virat Kohli in stout defense of the former captain.

Dhoni faced criticism for slow batting in the ODI series-opener in Sydney before redeeming his pride and reputation with match-winning contributions in the Adelaide and Melbourne ODIs.

Acknowledging Dhoni’s contribution in the historic series-triumph in Australia, Kohli defended the former captain, saying he should be allowed breathing space.

“I think firstly as a team we are very happy for Dhoni. That he is amongst the runs, because it is very important to get runs under your belt to get that rhythm and get that confidence back. Especially when you have not been playing so much international cricket,” said the India captain at the post-match press conference.

“Many things happen on the outside. People say a lot of things but as an individual we know that there is no one more committed to Indian cricket than Dhoni and people should let him have his space because he has contributed so much for the nation.

“They should let him figure out things on his own and what he needs to do. He is one of the most intelligent cricketers and he is not someone who is not aware about what needs to be done. As a team we are totally in sync with what he is doing and we are all very happy for him,” said Kohli.

The skipper also reckons that the just-concluded Australia series has proved that number five is the most logical spot for Dhoni.

“Dhoni batted at number four in 2016 for a while. But after that he has been pretty happy playing at five and six for the team. We felt that number five was the ideal position for him. And if you saw him bat at Adelaide as well he was pretty comfortable in that position because that allows him to do a bit of both – get some game time as well as finish games off, attacking as and when required,” Kohli said.

Dhoni, batting at number four, played a crucial role in India winning the decisive third ODI with his unbeaten 87-run knock on Friday and at Adelaide too his unbeaten half-century had scripted India’s win.

“He was more himself from that game (Adelaide) on, and he built onto this knock today. We are pretty happy with the batting combination that we had in Adelaide. When someone like Hardik Pandya is not there you have to balance somehow. So a lot of things vary in that regard. But we as a team, and myself as captain, we feel that Dhoni at five is the most logical. It is the ideal place for him and the team as well,” Kohli said.

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