Stories about cricket

5 ways Pakistan can turn the tri-series against Zimbabwe and Australia in their favour

The clouds of concern have cleared, and Pakistan is now ready to take on Zimbabwe and the currently third-ranked (in T20Is) Australia in a couple of days. Due to a financial crisis, the Zimbabwe Cricket Board was very uncertain regarding sponsorship and players’ availability for the tri-series, but it seems now that everything is in place to get the show started. Pakistan will be starting the series as favourites, which is very rare. The last time this was the case was in 2014 when Pakistan entered the Asia Cup as favourites, since India was short of their most dependable players: Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina and MS ...

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At least now we know what Ahmad Shahzad has been smoking!

During the series against World XI last year, I wrote on Ahmad Shahzad. Roughly nine months have passed and here I am writing about the same person again. He was playing selfishly back then and now he is allegedly playing with substance abuse.  The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has not officially stated the name of the cricketer involved in the doping test, however, they have confirmed that there was someone who tested positive. Reports have been surfacing that this “mystery man” is Shahzad. To be honest, it would not be a surprise if this turns out to be true. Not much ...

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How the men in green fared in the memorable #PakvsEng

In the first Test at Lords, Pakistan did to England what Pakistan does best – surprise everyone when they expect it the least. I’ll make a confession, I was hopeful for Pakistan to perform but not confident enough to wake up so early and sacrifice my sleep over it, since the match started at 6am in New York. When I woke up, England was four down for a little over 100 runs. Then, Mohammad Amir ran in and got Alastair Cook bowled with a move that only Amir could have pulled off. From that moment onwards, I was glued to the ...

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Today’s Mohammad Amir is a shadow of his own past

Long silky hair blowing past his face, run up so smooth that there is not a single hint of hindrance and the ability to pitch the ball in the exact same spot, but make it move different ways at will. Who can ever forget the sight of an adolescent Mohammad Amir producing spells that reminded us of the legendary Wasim Akram? With Pakistan’s victory over Ireland, Amir just completed a 100 Test wickets – a feat he would have accomplished long ago but life had other plans for him. 13 May 2018; Mohammad Amir of Pakistan celebrates after ...

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Why limiting players’ league participation is an essential move by the PCB

Once in a blue moon, I find myself agreeing with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). The decision to limit the participation of centrally-contracted players in franchise cricket around the globe is one of those odd instances. The cap placed by PCB was writing on the wall, it was only a matter of time for them to step in. When the players choose to participate in every tom, dick and harry league around the world, it comes at a price. A human body is not immortal. Even if the player is at his peak, in terms of his fitness at least, there is ...

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100 is a ‘century’, not a tournament!

Pink balls, day-night Tests, four-day Tests. I thought they liked to tinker with Test cricket only, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. A few months back, there was a 10-10 tournament in the UAE; not to mention a tournament played on ice in freezing temperature somewhere in Europe. And now, it’s the ‘100 balls’ proposed tournament in England. Who would’ve thought that cricket administrators would toy with the shortest and the most ‘lucrative’ format, the T20. There is a misconception that T20 came into being in 2000s. The T20 format has a history, of course not as rich as ODI and ...

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Can the real American desi please stand up?

While Pakistani-Americans receive some notice in news because of their professional and social achievements, there are several amusing habits of desis which are hardly ever explored in the media. Noted writers like Kumail Nanjiani, Ayad Akthar and Mohsin Hamid have portrayed Pakistanis in America close to reality, but have missed some interesting facts about them. After living in the US for over a decade, I have observed several habits of American desis which distinguish us from other members of society. Mentioning them is not an attempt to stereotype all Pakistani Americans; it is, in a humorous way, my take on my ...

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Amir’s punishment was justified, but has the world been too harsh on Smith and Warner?

The recent ball tampering scandal – SandpaperGate, as it is being colloquially referred to – continues to emanate shockwaves in the cricketing world. Both Steve Smith and David Warner have ended up losing their leadership roles, and have also been banned for one year each. Further, Smith has been declared ineligible for captaining Australia for two years, whereas Warner has been declared the same for life. In addition, both have also been banned from playing in the Indian Premier League (IPL), which will literally burn a hole worth millions in their pockets. While young Cameron Bancroft has also been banned ...

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ICC’s response to #SandpaperGate is shameful, but is it white privilege?

Ball tampering is probably the biggest bane to the gentleman’s game, otherwise known as cricket. By now, what transpired during the third Test between South Africa and Australia at Cape Town is common knowledge, and the blatant attempt at cheating has shocked Australians and the rest of the world alike.   FULL VIDEO OF @cbancroft4 #BALLTAMPERING. There is no doubt. From the yellow item down the trousers to @darren_lehmann sending a message on-field GUILTY! @officialcsa @ESPNcricinfo @icc BAN AND FINE should have changed ball #savaus pic.twitter.com/8LLToUECWa — Neal Collins (@nealcol) March 24, 2018 There will be those who will say, “ball tampering has happened many times ...

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When PSL came to Karachi, and the city felt alive again

Not too long ago, the city of Karachi was the hub of fear. Residents constantly feared for the law and order situation, and people would think twice before stepping out at night. The festive nature inherent in the spirit of Karachi only made this situation tougher, as in light of growing terror, the festive mood and the lights of the city slowly faded away. Years ago, when the doors of the National Stadium finally closed as well, the people of Karachi eventually forgot what it feels like to turn the lights back on.   Until now. It definitely felt more like ...

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