Archive for March, 2012
Durham have bolstered their bowling attack for this summer’s Friends Life t20 competition with the signing of Australian speed-merchant Mitchell Johnson as their second overseas player.
The 2009 ICC Cricketer of the Year will join South African all-rounder Herschelle Gibbs as the Dynamos’ overseas stars, adding some real Twenty20 pedigree to the county’s side and significantlt shortening their odds with Stan James.
Johnson has been a key part of the Australian side in all three formats of the game over the past five years, although the 30-year-old has struggled to recover from a dreadful Ashes series last year and has found his international chances dry up.
This summer is critical for Johnson to catch the eye of the Aussie selectors again, and the left-arm bowler will be looking to use his time at Durham, as well as his upcoming spell in the IPL with the Mumbai Indians, to impress the Australian management. Both competitions are covered at www.stanjames.com and it will be interesting to see how Johnson can bolster his two sides.
The Queenslander has admitted he is planning to achieve success during his time in the North East of England this summer. Johnson also revealed it had been the advice of former England adversary Paul Collingwood that convinced him to join up with the Dynamos for this summer’s Twenty20 competition.
“I’ve heard brilliant things about Durham from Paul Collingwood when he played over in Perth and I’m really excited about joining up with the squad,” he said.
“Delivering match winning contributions is important to me and that’s not just with a focus on my bowling – all round performances in t20 are really important and I want to leave at the end of July having secured our place at Finals Day!”
Harbhajan Singh will lead the Mumbai Indians through this year’s IPL tournament after Sachin Tendulkar stepped down from the role on the eve of the start of the competition. The Indian spinner is certainly experienced enough to lead the side, although what impact Tendulkar’s decision will have on the team remains to be seen.
The record breaking batsman has taken the decision in order to focus on his form, admitting he had taken time and consideration in making the move but believed it would be the best for both parties as the veteran’s body begins to feel the effects of such a long career at the top of the game. This decision will surely influence the odds at betting.stanjames.com as Mumbai have benefited from Tendulkar’s leadership.
“The Mumbai Indians is more than a team. It is like a family to me. At this point of time, I feel I need a break from the responsibility of captaincy.
“After due consideration, I discussed my intention to hand over the captaincy of the team to Harbhajan Singh,” admitted the 39-year old.
Singh will now have to ensure Mumbai are fully focused on the job in hand, looking to improve on their play-off defeat to Royal Challengers Bangalore in last year’s tournament. They did go on to claim victory at the Champions League tournament at the end of the year and will be hoping to bring this momentum into this year’s IPL.
The squad is certainly capable of challenging for this year’s title with the star-studded group that has been assembled. This has been noticed in the Stan James betting. There is plenty of interest being paid to South African batting sensation Richard Levi in particular and it’ll now be down to the players to prove their worth as they aim to get their campaign off to a good start.
The New Zealand Cricket Board have backed Jesse Ryder in his decision to play for the Pune Warriors in this year’s IPL, insisting they believe the batsman’s participation in the Twenty20 tournament will aid his return to the international scene. The 27-year-old hasn’t played for the Black Caps since February, following yet another disciplinary matter resulted in the opener being dropped from the squad.
A number of issues following then have seen Ryder fail to yet return to action for Wellington, although the big-hitting Kiwi has revealed he will head to India to represent the Warriors over the next few months. While the decision hasn’t gone down well in all areas, New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White has backed Ryder to get back onto the right road with a spell in India and fans of cricket betting will be keeping an eye on him.
“It’s really positive that Jesse has reached the point where here is ready to play competitive cricket again,” he said.
“He has clear expectations from NZC in terms of what is required from him to make a return to international cricket and playing in the IPL is a good first step.”
“We are proud of the progress he has made and we will continue to support him through what has been a tough time.”
There aren’t many batsmen in the world who can match an on-song Ryder when it comes to Twenty20 batting and fans of Betfair will know this. While the Warriors will be hoping the Kiwi can shake off his recent troubles and rediscover his form, New Zealand will be even more desperate to have the big-hitting Ryder back at the top of their order for a busy second half of 2012.
A tour of the West Indies following the IPL has been mooted as a possible return for Ryder to the New Zealand side, although, head coach John Wright has admitted he is losing patience in the frequently erratic behaviour of the batsman.
Lancashire have admitted they are looking into the possibility of re-signing Pakistan pace bowler Junaid Khan for their Twenty20 campaign this summer. The county are looking to fill their two overseas positions for the T20 tournament and have revealed their desire to bring Junaid back to Old Trafford for his second spell at the club.
The bowler played a key role in Lancashire’s Twenty20 campaign last season, taking 12 wickets in eight matches as the county reached the semi-final stages. Junaid impressed many with his performances, especially in man-of-the-match displays against Derbyshire, Warwickshire and Northants. Fans of Betfair mobile betting need to remember this.
Currently finishing their pre-season preparations in the UAE, Lancashire have already captured South African batsman Ashwell Prince for their title-defending County Championship campaign. Now, director of cricket Mike Watkinson has revealed Junaid will be one of their main targets for their T20 campaign.
“It’s no secret that we’ve been speaking to Junaid, so we’ll have to wait and see,” revealed Watkinson.
Junaid has been struggling to reclaim his place in the Pakistan side since suffering an abdominal injury during November’s one-day series against Sri Lanka. The 22-year old was absent from his country’s title winning Asia Cup campaign recently, and the bowler could be keen to try and impress in England in a bid to put himself back in favour with the Pakistani selectors. Those following the IPL cricket betting should bear this in mind.
The youngster has admitted he was disappointed to miss out on the Asia Cup, however, Junaid has made it clear he is confident of reclaiming his place in the side after spending time working on his game.
“Missing out on events such as the Asia Cup did hurt a lotBut I am not disappointed because I believe it’s a temporary setback.”
“I’m working on new deliveries to improve as a bowler-one is a deceiving swing delivery and the other is a reverse-swing delivery. I’m giving these two a lot of time these days.”
Samit Patel’s international career looked to be going nowhere 18 months ago, however, the all-rounder is now close to earning his first England Test cap. Patel’s return to both fitness and form saw him return to the international set-up in the one-day side; the all-rounder playing key roles in the recent series’ against India and Pakistan.
The squad will soon head to Sri Lanka for a two-Test series, and Patel looks set to be vying for a spot in the side with Ravi Bopara – both players looking to establish themselves in the team following Eoin Morgan’s omission. While Bopara probably offers the more solid choice in terms of batting, the ideal spinning conditions at Colombo and Galle could see Patel given the nod, with his left-arm turn giving the side another bowling option. Those following the Betfair cricket betting will be keeping a close eye on things.
The Nottinghamshire star admitted his delight at finally breaking into the Test squad, making it clear he is determined to take his chance should the opportunity present itself and cement his place in the side. Anyone making online bets should remember this.
“This is a different thing for me because I’ve never been in a Test squad before and I’m quite excited really,” said Patel.
“It’s a massive boost for me having never been in the squad before and I’m very excited to show everyone what I can really do and take any opportunities I’m given.”
“One of my goals is to play Test cricket. I’ve always wanted to do that as well as one-day cricket. I want to play all formats for England. It’s easy to get here, the toughest bit is staying in the squad and staying in the team.”
A much publicised battle with his fitness saw Patel struggle to fully reach his potential earlier in his career, and now the 27-year old has a perfect chance to finally hit the big time – a chance he seems determined to take.
Bangladesh have sprung a surprise by leaving out Tamim Iqbal from this month’s Asia Cup squad. The left hander had been struggling with a groin injury since the start of the year, an injury which restricted his contribution in the recent Bangladesh Premier League to just two games.
The left-hander returned to action and was expected to earn his place in the Tigers squad for the Asia Cup. That hasn’t been the case, however, and Iqbal is one of a number of changes from the squad which took on Pakistan in their last one-day international against Pakistan in December. People who bet on cricket online may be a little surprised.
Mashrafe Mortaza has returned to the international fold for the first time since last April, earning a recall following an impressive BPL tournament in which the all-rounder led the Dhaka Gladiators to the title at the inaugural event in Bangladesh.
Other changes see wicket-keeper batsmen Jahurul Islam and Anamul Haque named among the squad, as well as batsman Nazimuddin and fast bowler Shahadat Hossain. The changes see Farhad Reza, Alok Kapali, Shahriar Nafees, Naeem Islam and Rubel Hossain all dropped from the Pakistan series, as Bangladesh look to freshen up a side that has looked sluggish in recent matches.
The squad will open their Asia Cup campaign with a clash against the ever-improving Pakistan side, before matches against the in-form Sri Lankans and struggling Indians. The Tigers will go into the competition without many giving them much hope, and the next few weeks could be tough for this much changed Bangladeshi team.