Bangladesh change squad
Bangladesh rang the changes in a 14-man squad named on Sunday for next month’s one-day series against Australia following their disappointing World Cup campaign. Former captain Mashrafe Mortaza and batsman Alok Kapali were recalled and Mohammad Ashraful, Junaid Siddique, Naeem Islam and Nazmul were dropped. Uncapped batsman Shuvagoto Hom was the only newcomer included for the three-match series beginning on April 9. World Cup co-hosts Bangladesh failed to reach the quarter-finals. Australia, whose World Cup defense was ended by India at the quarter-final stage, are due to arrive in Bangladesh on April 4. The three one-dayers will be held at Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on April 9, 11 and 13. The new lineup is: Shakib Al Hasan (captain), Tamim Iqbal (vice-captain), Mashrafe Mortaza, Imrul Kayes, Shahriar Nafees, Roqibul Hassan, Alok Kapali, Shuvagoto Hom, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Abdur Razzak, Suhrawadi Shuvo, Rubel Hossain and Shafiul Islam.
Tait retires from one-day
Australia fast bowler Shaun Tait yesterday in Sydney announced his retirement from one-day cricket to concentrate on the Twenty20 form of the game. Tait, 28, who has just returned from the World Cup on the subcontinent, said he would step down from the national and South Australia one-day teams in an attempt to prolong his career. “I have decided to retire from one-day cricket for both Australia and the South Australian Redbacks,” Tait said in a statement released through Cricket Australia. “This is not a decision I have taken lightly, but I believe it is one that will help me to prolong my cricketing career through the many Twenty20 avenues available. In reality, playing all year round for Australia and South Australia is not allowing my body to stand up as I would like and I do not want to be forced into retirement through career-ending injuries.” Tait said his goal was to help Australia retain the ICC Cricket World Cup, currently underway in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Cricket Australia’s general manager Michael Brown said Tait had been an important contributor to Australia’s shorter version of cricket over the past few years. “Bowling at the speeds he generates places an unusual strain on his body and Cricket Australia respects the decision he makes today,” Brown said.
John Key to skip semi-final
New Zealand Prime Minister John Key was “delighted” by an invitation to witness his country play Sri Lanka in today’s World Cup semi-final, but logistics will keep him away. Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse, who invited Key on Sunday, said in Colombo the New Zealand prime minister was keen to visit, but he had just returned to the capital and there was no possibility that he could make it to Sri Lanka by today. “He has said that he was delighted with the invitation, but he is unable to make it in time due to logistical problems,” the president told foreign correspondents at his residence yesterday. The 1996 champions will tackle New Zealand today for a place in the final. The Black Caps had knocked South Africa out of the World Cup by defeating them by 49 runs on Friday. Sri Lanka will meet New Zealand for a second time in the current World Cup after their 112-run victory over the Black Caps in their Group A match in Mumbai, India, on March 18. The winner of today’s semi-final will meet the winners of tomorrow’s clash between India and Pakistan on Saturday.
‘GREAT EVENING‘: In the women’s singles in Rome, Simona Halep and Karolina Pliskova advanced, while Rafael Nadal swept into the quarters in the men’s singles Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic on Friday had to dig deep to advance to the semi-finals of the women’s doubles at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. The top seeds, who did not drop a game in their opening match on the clay courts at the Foro Italico, battled to a 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 victory over sixth seeds Veronika Kudermetova and Katerina Siniakova in 1 hour, 39 minutes. The reigning Wimbledon champions saved nine of 11 break points and converted three of eight, winning 56 percent of points on their second serve and sending down two aces
’SO CONSISTENT’: The victory gave the world No. 1 and world No. 2 a 21-1 win-loss record and their fourth title of the season after successes in Brisbane, Dubai and Doha Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic on Sunday cruised to their fourth women’s doubles title of the season at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome in their first tournament back since the suspension of the WTA Tour due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The top seeds took just 63 minutes to complete a comprehensive 6-2, 6-2 victory over unseeded German-Romanian duo Anna-Lena Friedsam and Raluca Olaru at the Foro Italico. It was the Taiwanese-Czech pairing’s first outing since they won the Qatar Open in February. “After five months, you don’t know what to expect,” Strycova told the WTA Web site.
‘FUN TIME’: Denver’s Nikola Jokic said that his team would not accept that anyone else is better than them and the opposition need to play much better than they do Just about everyone had LA versus LA written in for the NBA’s Western Conference finals, but the resilient Denver Nuggets have crashed the party. Behind Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic, the Nuggets advanced to the conference finals for the first time since 2009 to face LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers. Game 1 is scheduled to be played tomorrow. This was no ordinary road. The Nuggets fell behind 3-1 in their first-round series against the Utah Jazz before bouncing back with three straight victories. Then they went down 3-1 to the Los Angeles Clippers in the second round before winning in Game 7
‘GREAT COMPETITOR’: Former French Open champion Garbine Muguruza was tested by American teenager Coco Gauff, before the Spaniard advanced in three sets Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic on Thursday cruised into the quarter-finals of the women’s doubles at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia by handing their Japanese opponents a rare “double bagel,” a feat matched by US Open losing finalist Victoria Azarenka in the women’s singles. Top seeds Hsieh and Strycova took just 49 minutes to see off the challenge of Japanese duo Nao Hibino and Makoto Ninomiya 6-0, 6-0 on the clay courts at the Foro Italico in Rome. The Taiwanese-Czech duo saved both break points they faced and converted six of 14, winning 62 percent of their first