19 Sep

Cricket News Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara fifties gives India edge in Boxing Day Test vs Australia

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. New Delhi: Mayank Agarwal’s journey from being ignored to becoming the 295th player to make his debut for India could be part of a thrilling Bollywood movie. The right-hander, who banged hard on the doors of national selection in 2017/18 with over 2000 runs in domestic cricket, was ignored then. He continued to score runs but was still ignored. Agarwal was picked in the West Indies series but not given a game. His omission from the initial squad for the Australia tour was interpreted as unfair. Agarwal got the nod for Melbourne only because Prithvi Shaw was ruled out. When he got the chance, the right-handed batsman pounced on it and struck a glorious fifty on debut. Aided by Cheteshwar Pujara’s second fifty in the series and Virat Kohli’s aggressive knock, India made a great start to the Boxing Day Test by reaching 215/2 at stumps on day 1 against Australia in Melbourne on Wednesday.Virat Kohli won an important toss and chose to bat. When Hanuma Vihari strode out to bat with Agarwal, the duo became the first Indian opening pair to open for the first time in Tests in 82 years. Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins all tried to extract life from a wicket which had some grass covering but lacked the zip, pace and bounce of Perth and Adelaide. Agarwal made confident progress while Vihari ensured that Australia could not capitalise the first hour.Read More | How Virat Kohli holds a crucial edge in Boxing Day Test vs Australia?However, Cummins broke the 40-run opening stand when he got Vihari (8) out with a sharp bouncer that thudded into the gloves and the ball lobbed to third slip where Finch took the catch. Agarwal was joined by Pujara and the duo steadied the ship. While Pujara focused on stonewalling the Australian attack, Agarwal got going with a couple of boundaries and reached his maiden fifty by smashing Nathan Lyon for two boundaries. The reception that Agarwal received at the G would have eased all the years of hardship and frustration.Read More | Pujara continues fine form with brilliant fifty in Boxing Day TestAgarwal grew in confidence and he launched Lyon into the stands at deep midwicket for a big six. However, in the last over of the second session, Cummins, who was the only bowler to extract some life from the deck, once again bowled a bouncer which Agarwal could only fend to the leg side. However, Pujara and Virat Kohli looked in great touch and ensured Australia toiled in the final session.Read More | India vs Australia, highlights: Pujara, Agarwal 50s keyKohli aggressive, Pujara solidThe final session saw Kohli easing into confidence with a couple of boundaries. Although the likes of Starc and Hazlewood tempted him to drive away from the body, Kohli survived and made good progress. The Indian skipper survived an LBW appeal off Lyon and it was not overturn on review as the impact was outside off stump. At the other end, Pujara continued to bat with positivity and reached his 21st fifty and second of this series.Read More | Agarwal, Vihari achieve a 1st for India in Boxing Day after 500 TestsWhen the second new ball was taken, Australia sensed an opening and they looked to take a couple of wickets. In the 87th over bowled by Starc, the pressure was built nicely. The left-armer got a ball to cut back in off the deck and Kohli was rapped on the pads but the ball was possibly going over the stumps and missing leg stump. Next ball, Starc delivered the sucker punch as he bowled a full and wide delivery. Kohli edged it but Tim Paine dropped the catch. The next four balls featured deliveries which were more than 150 kmph but Kohli negotiated it safely.India have made the right start but the dropped chance of Kohli at the end of the day has given the visitors plenty of momentum as the Test progresses. last_img read more

17 Sep

Syracuse secures berth in ACC tournament, wins series against Virginia Tech

first_img Published on April 27, 2014 at 6:54 pm Contact Matt: [email protected] | @matt_schneidman Syracuse needed one win in its last three games to secure a berth in the Atlantic Coast Conference tournament, but the series started off in the worst way possible.On Saturday, Virginia Tech’s Lauren Gaskill sent the very first pitch of the three-game set into the netting beyond the right-field fence.But after two strong outings from Sydney O’Hara and extra-inning heroics from Danielle Chitkowski, the Orange (24-24, 12-12 ACC) took two games from Virginia Tech (32-20, 19-9), securing an ACC tournament berth in the program’s first season in the league.Syracuse split with the ACC’s second-best team on Saturday at SU Softball Stadium, winning 5-4 in eight innings before losing 10-0 after the mercy rule was enforced after six. Then on Sunday’s Senior Day, the Orange won the rubber match by a score of 7-3.For the Syracuse players, securing a berth in the ACC tournament in the team’s first season in the league is a statement to the conference that they too can compete with the best.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“People didn’t think we would be able to,” Chitkowski said. “First time in there, it’s a good feeling to show teams that we can compete in a better conference.”In the first game, the Hokies took a 3-1 lead into the bottom of the sixth, but Syracuse was able to equalize after back-to-back opposite-field hits from Jasmine Watson and Julie Wambold.The game went into extra innings after a scoreless seventh, and Virginia Tech jumped in front courtesy of a RBI single off the bat of Amanda Ake.Down one in the bottom of the eighth, Chitkowski took a two-out, full-count pitch to the fence in right-center field, scoring Wambold from second and pinch runner Alexis Partyka from first.The walk-off guaranteed the Orange postseason play and sent the team flooding off the bench to maul Chitkowski.“Really, I was just thinking get the ball in play,” Chitkowski said. “Once it got through, I wasn’t even paying attention to me running, just everyone else scoring, but it was a good feeling.”On Sunday, the Orange came out all guns blazing, putting six runs on the board in the bottom of the third. Watson blasted a grand slam just inside the right-field foul pole and gave O’Hara all the run support she would need.Despite only striking out one, O’Hara went through the first 4 2/3 without allowing a hit. Through the rain on Saturday and cold on Sunday, the freshman earned wins 15 and 16, shutting down the Hokies’ potent offense.“They’re all great hitters, but I just had to be really careful and hit the corners,” O’Hara said. “The pitching has to be on point, and the pitching just has to trust the defense.”Virginia Tech hit one home run each in the fifth and sixth to narrow the deficit to 6-3, but O’Hara was able to work out of a jam to close out the win in the season’s final game.For SU head coach Leigh Ross, the feat of making the conference tournament in the team’s first season in the ACC shows just how far this young team has come since the beginning of the season.“Especially with the team that we have, we’re so young,” Ross said. “We’ve had so many obstacles and things that we’ve really had to overcome.”Although the win got the Orange to .500 overall and in conference, taking two games from the ACC’s second-best team signified much more than that for Ross heading into the conference tournament.“As a coach, it’s kind of what you always preach, the chemistry part,” Ross said. “We’re getting the experience part, so now it’s a combination.“We’re starting a new season in two weeks.” Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more