Cricket columns on Monday (August 7) across the globe had their fill with news about India’s triumph over Sri Lanka, Ravindra Jadeja’s inevitability on a dust-splaying pitch, and the proceedings from the ongoing England-South Africa Test.
Meanwhile, in an interview with the Times of India, Aravinda de Silva, the Sri Lankan veteran, said Virat Kohli’s arrogance and confidence reminded him of Viv Richards.
Elsewhere, there were whispers that James Anderson is considering a player-coach role with England if Ottis Gibson, the current bowling coach, takes up the South Africa job.
Death, taxes and Ravindra Jadeja (The Indian Express)
Like death and taxes, Jadeja too is a grim inevitability on a crumbling, dust-splaying pitch. Few spinners around the world have mastered the art of bowling on deteriorating surfaces as Jadeja. Such is his control that he hits a spot at considerable pace session after session. Sometimes those balls turn, sometimes not. Batsmen confess it’s a deadly combination.
Even in defeat, Sri Lanka show ingenuity (The Indian Express)
Given the circumstances, it was a semi-comical moment. Rangana Herath pirouetted his body and middled a reverse-sweep without even bothering to kneel down, more like a reverse-hit in hockey. It bisected the nonexistent gap between slip and gully, the latter stationed really fine, with pinpoint precision. Herath proudly stood in his follow through, admiring the ball reach the fence. The Indian fielders peeled into bursts of laughter. As the hosts were already eight wickets down, they didn’t mind the frolicking of a lower-order batsman.
Virat’s arrogance reminds me of Richards: Aravinda (The Times of India)
Perhaps, it was his presence at the SSC on Saturday, which enabled the Sri Lankans to go down fighting in the second Test against India. Sitting in the corporate box with Sri Lanka Cricket (SL) president Thilanga Sumathipala, Aravinda de Silva, one of the best batsmen to have come out of this island, enjoyed the Lankan fight back, but, speaking to him, you wonder if a `Virat Kohli’ special would rather have pleased him more.
SSC-pass India now await bigger tests (The Times of India)
Shikhar Dhawan slapped his thigh in signature style, and after congratulating each other, India skipper Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane grabbed a stump each and walked away. There were no big celebrations.
Dishing out eight days of flawless cricket, India had outplayed Sri Lanka to clinch a rare overseas series win after just two Tests, but the enthusiasm that normally accompanies their Test triumphs outside the country was missing.Surely, the low-key celebrations at the Sinhalese Sports Club (SSC), after they thrashed the hosts by an innings and 53 runs to finish off the series even before it moves to Pallekele for the third Test (August 12), told you one thing: Kohli and his team know biggest arrive only next year, when India embark on tougher away tours to South Africa, England and Australia.
David Warner regrets way Australian cricket’s pay dispute played out in media (Sydney Morning Herald)
The most vocal of Australia’s senior players during the recent cricket pay war, David Warner says he regrets the way the issue played out in the media.
After months of negotiations, the Australian Cricketers Association last week agreed to a new memorandum of understanding with Cricket Australia, retaining the revenue-sharing concept that had been the source of much debate.
Sydney Thunder eye three international signings in WBBL (Sydney Morning Herald)
Big Bash franchises have turned their attention to signing players after Thursday’s resolution of Australian cricket’s lengthy pay war, and the Sydney Thunder are confident of landing three international stars for the WBBL.
The Thunder are in negotiations with India’s Harmanpreet Kaur, who destroyed Australia’s women’s World Cup dream last month, and West Indies allrounder Stafanie Taylor – both of whom played for the Sydney outfit last season.
England have scheduled an extra practice session under lights ahead of their first home day-night Test, against West Indies at Edgbaston next week.
The tourists have already experienced a pink-ball Test, having lost to Pakistan in Dubai in October.
But Joe Root’s team are heading into uncharted waters, and will hold a three-hour session in the middle, three days before the game starts on August 17.
James Anderson would like to be considered for the position of England fast bowling coach if Ottis Gibson takes the No 1 job with South Africa.
Although the 35-year-old has no intention of retiring anytime soon, and has targeted the 2019 Ashes as his international swansong, he has naturally allowed his thoughts to turn towards a post-playing career.
And the timing of South Africa’s move for Gibson, as revealed by Sportsmail on Friday, opens up the possibility of Anderson taking a player-coach role for the Ashes tour which starts in October.
Andrew Flintoff has spent most of this match watching from the Old Trafford pavilion so it was fitting he was on the ground when Moeen Ali matched one of his feats from 2005.
Moeen became the first England player since Flintoff in that Ashes summer to score 200 runs and take 20 wickets in a single series when he powered his way to an unbeaten 67, slotting the kind of sixes that were trademark of Freddie at his peak.
The little shake of the head said it all. As Dawid Malan trudged off as the third and final member of England’s new crew to fail, the blank expression on his face summed up the lack of answers this series has provided for England’s batting problems.
As South Africa emerged after tea on the third day their captain, Faf du Plessis, called a huddle on the outfield and urged his players to deliver one final push to protect an under-acclaimed record of losing only one away series in the past nine years.
But just when the tourists started to believe in the rallying words from Du Plessis, one of the more troubling features of both their day and their tour emerged. Dean Elgar, a player who has embodied much of their spirit, duffed a relatively simple chance from Moeen Ali at slip on 15 and with it the series was perhaps finally gone.
England short on time to solve Ashes issues (cricket.com.au)
England may be in a winning position in this final Test against South Africa but they find themselves with myriad selection headaches ahead of the Ashes. What we do know is that Alastair Cook, Joe Root and Ben Stokes will be there come the opening Test against Australia at Brisbane in November. Yet there are worrying gaps elsewhere, with an opening partner for Cook, a No.3 and a No.5 all still up for grabs.