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Recent Match Report – Khyber Pakhtunkhwa vs Southern Punjab (Pakistan) Final 2020

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Khyber Pakhtunkhwa edged out Southern Punjab by ten runs in the final to lift the National T20 Cup. Put in to bat first, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s openers – Fakhar Zaman and Mohammad Rizwan – put up a 76-run partnership, with Zaman’s 40-ball 67 leading the way. When Rizwan fell, Mohammad Hafeez (38 off 26) took over and helped set up an ideal platform for the death overs, where Shoaib Malik rolled back the years and the smashed the fastest fifty of his T20 career, off just 20 balls, to take the side past 200.

In the end, it might have been a scoreline that read slightly harshly on Aamer Yamin, Zahid Mahmood, and Mohammad Imran, who took a wicket each and created plenty of chances, but sloppiness in the field cost Southern Punjab. Shan Masood’s side put down no fewer than five catches – three benefitted Mohammad Hafeez alone. It was generosity they could ill-afford to extend to a side as good as Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and if they were to win the title, they’d have to chase 207.

They didn’t get off to the best start, with Shaheen Afridi getting rid of Shan Masood early. It wasn’t the only damage the tournament’s leading wicket-taker inflicted; he removed Sohaib Maqsood off the next delivery to deal a huge blow to Southern Punjab’s chances. Zeeshan Ashraf’s 16 off 19 came to an end when he offered a regulation catch to extra cover off Wahab Riaz, who snared him off his second ball of the evening. With Southern Punjab 34 for 3 in 5.2 overs, Hussain Talat and Khushdil Shah were left with what seemed like an insurmountable task.

Both shared a fighting stand to keep the case alive and put up 74 for the fourth wicket before Usman Shinwari removed Shah. A remarkable diving catch on the boundary by Malik sent Talat back. He had smashed a spirited 33-ball 63, but it wasn’t enough, with Southern Punjab needing a further 76 from 34 balls when he departed. That was never a realistic prospect, with the asking rate always just out of reach, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa wrapped up a deserved win with relative ease by the end.



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BBL 2020-21 – Rashid Khan makes Adelaide Strikers his home again

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Local favourite Rashid Khan, the Afghanistan legspinner, will return to the Adelaide Strikers for the BBL

Khan has taken 56 wickets in 40 matches and contributed 253 runs at a strike-rate of 161.14 while becoming one of the iconic players in the tournament.

There had been suggested he could be lured away from the Strikers but he will remain for at least another season.

“I’m so happy that I am able to play for the Strikers again in a big tenth season of the Big Bash, and I have loved this competition from the very beginning,” Rashid said. The Strikers have been like a family to me since I joined them, and I am so thankful to the fans who have been supporting me and made me feel like Adelaide is my home.”

Confirmation of Khan’s return follows that of team-mate Mohammad Nabi who will again play for the Melbourne Renegades.

Teams will be allowed to field up to three overseas players in their XIs for the next two seasons after the increase from two was approved earlier this week.

The tournament is expected to start in the second week of December although the exact structure and schedule remains to be confirmed amid the reworking of the season.



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WBBL 2020-21 previews – Squads, player moves and ones to watch

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Adelaide Strikers

Captain: Suzie Bates

Coach: Luke Williams

WBBL history: 2015-16: 7th, 2016-17: 8th, 2017-18: Semi-final, 2018-19, 6th and 2019-20: Runners-up

Squad: Darcie Brown, Suzie Bates (NZ), Sarah Coyte, Ellie Falconer, Amanda-Jade Wellington, Katie Mack, Tegan McPharlin, Tahlia McGrath, Annie O’Neil, Bridget Patterson, Madeline Penna, Alex Price, Megan Schutt, Stafanie Taylor (WI), Laura Wolvaardt (SA)

In Madeline Penna (Stars), Laura Wolvaardt
Out Sophie Devine (Scorchers), Tabatha Saville

Pre-season

How will last season’s runners-up cope with losing the talismanic Sophie Devine? They have brought in Laura Wolvaardt, the South Africa batter who is one of the most exciting young players in the game, but Devine’s 2019-20 haul of 769 runs and 19 wickets will require the squad to dig deep. They will hope to see far more of West Indian Stafanie Taylor than last season.

Player to watch

Bridget Patterson had a very solid tournament last season with 319 runs – putting her fourth behind the Strikers’ big three of Devine, Suzie Bates and Tahlia McGrath – and that form was enough to earn her an Australia A call-up to face India. She is the type of player – now secured on a three-year deal – that will need to kick her game on again to help fill the void left by Devine’s exit.

Brisbane Heat

Captain: Jess Jonassen

Coach: Ashley Noffke

WBBL history: 2015-16: 6th, 2016-17: 3rd, 2017-18: 5th, 2018-19: Champions and 2019-20: Champions

Squad: Maddy Green (NZ), Nicola Hancock, Grace Harris, Laura Harris, Mikayla Hinkley, Jess Jonassen, Amelia Kerr (NZ), Delissa Kimmince, Nadine de Klerk (SA), Charli Knott, Lilly Mills, Georgia Prestwidge, Georgia Redmayne, Courtney Sippel, Georgia Voll

In Nichola Hancock (Stars), Nadine de Klerk, Georgia Redmayne, Georgia Voll
Out Haidee Birkett, Sammy-Jo Johnson (Thunder), Beth Mooney (Scorchers), Kirby Short (retired)

Pre-season

There has been significant change for the defending champions as they prepare to attempt the hat-trick. Captain Kirby Short has retired with Jonassen promoted to lead the side, while Beth Mooney made one of the high-profile switches by moving to the Perth Scorchers and Sammy-Jo Johnson has gone to the Sydney Thunder. Whether the Heat can replace Mooney’s runs will be key – a task that will fall in part to Georgia Redmayne who has joined from the Scorchers.

Player to watch

Grace Harris is entertaining in whatever she does, whether it’s with bat, ball or with microphone. However, last season’s return of 212 runs at 17.66 and six wickets at 49.66 was perhaps a little below expectation. With the loss of such a key figure in Mooney, Harris will be one of the senior players who will need to take up the slack with the bat. With two ferocious WBBL hundreds to her name – her second coming off just 42 balls – and an overall strike-rate of 137.40, it will be interesting to see where she is used in the batting order.

Hobart Hurricanes

Captain: Corinne Hall

Coach: Salliann Briggs

WBBL history: 2015-16: 2nd, 2016-17: 4th, 2017-18: 8th, 2018-19: 8th and 2019-20: 7th

Squad: Nicola Carey, Maisy Gibson (injured), Corinne Hall, Brooke Hepburn, Erica Kershaw, Hayley Matthews (WI), Sasha Moloney, Rachel Priest (NZ), Chloe Rafferty, Amy Smith, Naomi Stalenberg, Emma Thompson, Chloe Tryon (SA), Tayla Vlaeminck (injured), Belinda Vakarewa; Replacements Hayley Jensen (NZ), Chloe Abel, Nell Bryson Smith, Emily Smith

In Erica Kershaw (Renegades), Rachel Priest (Thunder), Chloe Rafferty, Amy Smith, Naomi Stalenberg (Thunder), Emma Thompson
Out Stephanie Daffara, Erin Fazackerly (Renegades), Katelyn Fryett, Heather Knight, Meg Phillips, Emily Smith

Pre-season

The Hurricanes’ story has been one of steadily diminishing returns after starting out as competition finalists and then returning to the semi-finals the following year. Last season saw more inconsistency, with the distraction provided by the wicketkeeper Emily Smith‘s minor integrity infraction and the extremely harsh ban that Cricket Australia chose to hand down in response. Smith is only on the fringes of the squad this time around as a replacement player, with the gloves taken by New Zealand’s combative Rachel Priest. Perhaps the biggest obstacle to the Hurricanes this time around will be the fact that Tayla Vlaeminck has already been ruled out of the entire tournament. That came due to her long and challenging recovery path from a foot fracture which had ended her T20 World Cup campaign before it began. Australia had to change their tournament plans considerably without Vlaeminck – and the Hurricanes need to do likewise.

Player to watch

Nicola Carey is one of the national team’s more underrated contributors, offering parsimony with the ball and intelligent middle-order batting when required. She is not competing with anywhere near as many box office names at the Hurricanes and showed last season that the responsibility suited her, offering up numerous performances with both bat and ball that suggested she could step up similarly for Australia if ever required to offer something more than cameos.

Melbourne Renegades

Captain: Amy Satterthwaite

Coach: Lachlan Stevens

WBBL history: 2015-16: 8th, 2016-17: 7th, 2017-18: 6th, 2018-19: 4th and 2019-20: 4th

Squad: Makinley Blows, Maitlan Brown, Josie Dooley, Jess Duffin (unavailable), Erin Fazackerley, Ella Hayward, Lizelle Lee (SA), Carly Leeson, Sophie Molineux, Courtney Neale, Amy Satterthwaite (NZ), Molly Strano, Lea Tahuhu (NZ), Georgia Wareham, Courtney Webb

In Erin Fazackerly (Hobart Hurricanes), Ella Hayward, Lizelle Lee
Out Tammy Beaumont, Erica Kershaw, Claire Koski, Danni Wyatt

Pre-season

The return of Amy Satterthwaite as captain looms as a major source of encouragement for the club as they seek to graduate from a pair of semi-final appearances to become the first Melbourne team to take out the title. Lizelle Lee‘s arrival from South Africa will provide plenty of big hitting and still greater experience to the batting line-up – which will be missing Jess Duffin following her pregnancy – while in Molly Strano, Sophie Molineux and Georgia Wareham, the Renegades boast all but one member of the Australian team’s enviable spin bowling quartet. There remain doubts over Lea Tahuhu’s fitness though.

Player to watch

Satterthwaite‘s quality was on display as she acquitted herself best of all New Zealand’s players in their recent drubbing by Australia over twin T20 and ODI series in Brisbane. Her resumption as the leader of a Renegades combination that was able to maintain their league position without her in the 2019 tournament makes the club undoubtedly one of the chief obstacles for any WBBL trophy aspirants this time around.

Melbourne Stars

Captain: Meg Lanning

Coach: Trent Woodhill

WBBL history: 2015-16: 5th, 2016-17: 5th, 2017-18: 7th, 2018-19: 7th and 2019-20: 8th

Squad: Katherine Brunt (Eng), Lucy Cripps, Sophie Day, Bhavi Devchand, Nicole Faltum, Holly Ferling, Tess Flintoff, Georgia Gall, Alana King, Meg Lanning, Erin Osborne, Mignon du Preez, Nat Sciver (Eng), Annabel Sutherland, Elyse Villani

In Katherine Brunt, Sophie Day, Bhavi Devchand (Scorchers), Georgia Gall, Meg Lanning (Scorchers), Nat Sciver
Out Kristen Beams (retired), Nicola Hancock (Heat), Emma Inglis, Lizelle Lee (Renegades), Madeline Penna (Strikers), Angela Reakes (Sixers)

Pre-season

Were the Melbourne Stars’ men’s team to have maintained the sort of wretched record their women’s equivalent have managed over the WBBL’s first five seasons, little short of a Royal Commission would have been called. It remains a source of enormous frustration though that the Stars have not been able to prosper, and the return of Meg Lanning from a stint with the Perth Scorchers will undoubtedly help. Lanning performed well as the Stars began their existence as a mid-table team finishing just out of the semi-finals, and it will now be a question of whether the Stars and their new coach Trent Woodhill have been able to assemble an effective group to operate around her. The arrival of two seasoned England internationals in Katherine Brunt and Nat Sciver bode well for these plans, offering Lanning a pair of highly dependable operators with the ball and the bat, respectively. More will be expected of Annabel Sutherland, with Elyse Villani given the chance to score a little more freely without the responsibilities of captaincy.

Player to watch

It’s hard to look past Lanning as key to the Stars improving their fortunes, after two impressive seasons with the Scorchers saw a strong combination with Villani in particular before she moved to the Stars the season before Lanning chose to follow. There is a sense at the Stars that the club is finally committing the kinds of resources and attention to the WBBL that it should have done long ago, and Lanning’s return is a measure of that resolve.

Perth Scorchers

Captain Sophie Devine

Coach Shelley Nitschke

WBBL history 2015-16: 4th, 2016-17: Runners-up, 2017-18: Runners-up, 2018-19: 5th and 2019-20: Semi-final

Squad Megan Banting, Jemma Barsby, Samantha Betts, Nicole Bolton, Mathilda Carmichael, Piepa Cleary, Sophie Devine (NZ), Sarah Glenn (Eng), Heather Graham, Amy Jones (Eng) Emma King, Beth Mooney, Taneale Peschel, Chloe Piparo, Georgia Wyllie

In Megan Banting, Sophie Devine (Strikers), Sarah Glenn, Beth Mooney (Brisbane Heat), Georgia Wyllie
Out Kim Garth, Kath Hempenstall, Meg Lanning (Stars), Georgia Redmayne (Heat), Nat Sciver (Stars)

Pre-season

It would be hard to argue that anyone did better business than the Perth Scorchers as they brought in both Devine and Beth Mooney, while also signing England legspinner Sarah Glenn who has impressed this year. They have lost Meg Lanning but with Amy Jones and Nicole Bolton also in the batting line-up, they will be confident of getting runs on the board.

Player to watch

You would think the batting would look after itself, but what about the Scorchers bowling? Heather Graham was their leading wicket-taker last season with 15 and shapes as being a key component of the attack again if they want to go deep into the tournament. She had a brief taste with Australia last season but was not part of the expanded squad recently against New Zealand. She scored an unbeaten half-century against India A in the series before Christmas and took 3 for 40 to help Western Australia win the WNCL.

Sydney Sixers

Captain Ellyse Perry

Coach Ben Sawyer

WBBL history 2015-16: Runners up, 2016-17: Champions, 2017-18: Champions, 2018-19: Runners up and 2019-20: 5th

Squad Sarah Aley, Erin Burns, Stella Campbell, Lauren Cheatle, Maddy Darke, Ashleigh Gardner, Lisa Griffith, Alyssa Healy, Jodie Hicks, Emma Hughes, Marizanne Kapp (SA), Ellyse Perry, Angela Reakes, Hayley Silver-Holmes, Dane van Niekerk (SA)

In> Angela Reakes (Stars), Lisa Griffith (Thunder)
Out Alisha Bates, Lauren Smith (Thunder)

Pre-season

The Sixers were one of the quieter teams during a hectic contracting period as they look to respond the surprising fifth-place finish last season, the first time they ended outside of the top two. Pace-bowling allrounder Lisa Griffith has jumped across down from the Thunder with Lauren Smith heading the other way, while Angela Reakes returns to her original club after a spell with the Stars which included missing the whole of last season due to an Achilles injury. There will be plenty of attention on the recovery of Ellyse Perry from the hamstring injury which has sidelined her since the T20 World Cup after she suffered a setback while training with the Australia squad in Brisbane.

Player to watch

If Perry is available she will form an enviable opening pairing with Alyssa Healy, but it feels as though Ash Gardner is taking her game to a new level and could be set for a big tournament. She struck the ball very cleanly against New Zealand, especially in the well-constructed 61 in the opening T20I when Australia were in trouble, as she allies her strength and timing with the nous of building an innings – even in the short format. Coupled with her more-than-handy offspin and dynamic fielding, she is the ideal T20 all-round package.

Sydney Thunder

Captain Rachael Haynes

Coach Trevor Griffin

WBBL history 2015-16: Champions, 2016-17: 6th, 2017-18: Semi-final, 2018-19: Semi-final and 2019-20: 6th

Squad Sam Bates, Tammy Beaumont (Eng), Hannah Darlington, Rachael Haynes, Saskia Horley, Shabnim Ismail (SA) Sammy-Jo Johnson, Anika Learoyd, Phoebe Litchfield, Heather Knight (Eng), Kate Peterson, Olivia Porter (injured), Lauren Smith, Rachel Trenaman, Tahlia Wilson

In Tammy Beaumont, Sammy-Jo Johnson (Heat), Heather Knight, Anika Learoyd, Olivia Porter, Lauren Smith (Sixers)
Out Alex Blackwell (retired), Nida Dar, Rene Farrell (retired), Lisa Griffith (Sixers), Rachel Priest (Hurricanes), Naomi Stalenberg (Hurricanes)

Pre-season

After a disappointing sixth place last season, allrounder Sammy-Jo Johnson was a significant signing as she moved from the defending champions Brisbane Heat. England pair Heather Knight and Tammy Beaumont should provide a strong top order – which will have a new look this year after the retirement of Alex Blackwell and loss of Rachel Priest – alongside captain Rachael Haynes and the hugely talented Phoebe Litchfield.

Player to watch

Nineteen-year-old Hannah Darlington was the Thunder’s leading wicket-taker last year with 16 at 21.31, which earned her the young player of the tournament title. She then headed across the Tasman and was the leading wicket-taker for Otago in their Super Smash campaign with 13 wickets in 11 matches. She will form a potentially potent seam attack alongside Shabnim Ismail and Johnson.



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Nasir Jamshed faces extended prison term for spot-fixing role

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Nasir Jamshed’s hopes of an immediate release from prison have been dashed.

While Jamshed’s sentence for his part in a spot-fixing conspiracy is due to expire on October 21, he has now been informed he will remain in prison on the order of the Home Office.

Jamshed, the former Pakistan batsman, is now facing the prospect of deportation. Previously allowed to remain in the UK on the basis of a spousal visa – his wife is a Birmingham-born doctor – the length of his sentence has attracted the attention of immigration authorities. Under UK Law, any non-citizen given a prison sentence of more than 12 months can be deported. Jamshed was sentenced to 17 months of which he would usually be expected to serve half.

While Jamshed’s lawyer is expected to apply for bail imminently, he is certain to spend a little longer in prison even if it is granted. It is also possible he could be deported back to Pakistan, where he was born, and expected to contest his case from there.

His appeal against deportation will centre on his claim that he wasn’t made aware of the extent of the evidence against him and that, had he been, he would have entered a guilty plea in the first instance. As it was, the trial went into a sixth day before he changed his plea to guilty and, as a result, the judge applied little leniency in sentencing.

It is entirely possible an early guilty plea would have seen him sentenced to less than 12 months in prison and, as a consequence, avoid the prospect of deportation. ESPNcricinfo understands the lawyer involved has been referred to the Solicitors Regulation Authority and is currently under investigation.

The process has been delayed further by complications regarding Covid-19 which have caused a backlog in interviewing claimants and court dates.

Jamshed was sent to prison in February after changing his plea, mid-trial, to guilty to a conspiracy to bribe fellow cricketers in the PSL. He was also banned from the game, either as a player, coach or administrator, for 10 years.



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