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Dravid, Tendulkar And Indian Connection: Rachin Ravindra Opens Up

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New Zealand batsman Rachin Ravindra on Thursday said hitting a match-winning century in the World Cup opener was inspired by watching footage of India cricket icons Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid after whom he is named. With a first name made up of ‘Ra’ for Rahul and ‘chin’ from Sachin, due to his father’s love of the game, Ravindra lived up to his name in spectacular style. He smashed 123 in an unbeaten stand of 273 with Devon Conway as New Zealand cruised to a nine-wicket victory against defending champions England in Ahmedabad.

The 23-year-old Ravindra, whose parents moved from the south Indian city of Bengaluru to New Zealand, reached his ton soon after fellow left-hander Conway got his hundred in front of a sparse crowd at the 132,000-seater stadium.

He clubbed 11 fours and five sixes in his 96-ball innings and admitted he was inspired by Dravid and Tendulkar.

“I think those two are pretty special cricketers,” he said.

“Obviously, I’ve heard a lot of stories and watched a lot of footage and I guess the influence from my parents and the old-school Indian cricketers was pretty cool.

“Being able to watch a lot of their highlights and stuff. Obviously, I idolised Sachin Tendulkar. I guess being a lefty, there’s guys you look at, I love (Brian) Lara, I love (Kumar) Sangakkara, just the usual gun left-handers.”

The Wellington-born Ravindra reached his ton off 82 balls with nine fours and four sixes as New Zealand reached their target of 283 with 13.4 overs to spare on Thursday.

“I think a hundred is always special, but I guess in terms of being able to perform in India is pretty cool. It’s cool to have the Indian roots,” Ravindra told reporters.

“It was also nice to have my parents there watching and they flew over from New Zealand. So, it’s cool to have that moment and obviously it’s always nice coming to India.

“I have a sense of family connection whenever I’m in Bangalore and being able to see my grandparents.”

Ravindra has made an impression in just 13 ODI matches since his debut in March this year.

Promoted to number three, Ravindra made it count with his good friend Conway.

“Dev’s an absolutely incredible and special player. I think being able to share the pitch with him was pretty cool,” said Ravindra.

“I’ve spent a lot of time with over the last sort of five, six years and seeing how he’s risen to one of the best batters in the world. It’s pretty cool to share that milestone with him.”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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India Coach Application Deadline Ends: No Top Foreign Names Apply, VVS Laxman Not Interested, Gautam Gambhir…

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File image of former Indian cricket team star Gautam Gambhir© AFP




The deadline for applying for the post of Indian men’s cricket team chief coach ended on Monday but both the BCCI and the top name in its wishlist, Gautam Gambhir chose to keep mum on the development. After guiding Kolkata Knight Riders to their third IPL trophy on Sunday, it is but natural that Gambhir’s name is getting more momentum. While both interested parties haven’t said anything on record, the BCCI, it seems, doesn’t have too many quality options available at the moment.

It is understood that no notable foreign name has applied for the post, especially after BCCI secretary Jay Shah made it clear that the Board is looking at someone who has risen through the ranks and knows the domestic structure.

It could be safely said that the BCCI’s primary target was VVS Laxman, the National Cricket Academy head, but the stylish Hyderabadi seems not interested in a full time position which requires him to available for 10 months a year.

“The deadline is fine, but the BCCI brass wouldn’t mind taking some more time before reaching a decision. Right now, the team will be busy with World T20 for the better part of the month of June. After that seniors will be rested from tours of Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe where any of the NCA-based senior coaches can accompany the team. So what’s the hurry,” a BCCI source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.

Also, KKR principal owner Shah Rukh Khan shares a deep bond with Gambhir and it is not easy to leave an IPL team which has been a part of identity for the former India opener.

There’s another aspect that needs to be look into seriously — what senior India players, currently in New York, feel on whether Gambhir can indeed be Rahul Dravid‘s replacement. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Rafael Nadal Knocked Out of French Open Round 1 By Fourth Seed Alexander Zverev

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14-time champion Rafael Nadal knocked out of 2024 French Open Round 1 by fourth seed Alexander Zverev

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‘One Format May…’: Mitchell Starc Hints ODI Retirement After IPL 2024 Triumph

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Australia fast-bowler Mitchell Starc hinted on his ODI retirement after lifting the IPL trophy with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). The left-arm pacer said with a long wait before the next one-day World Cup, he might shift focus to more franchise cricket around the world. Starc’s return to the IPL has been nothing short of spectacular, culminating in a title win with Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). After years of prioritising international cricket, Starc’s decision to rejoin the cash-rich league paid off, and he now contemplates altering his cricketing commitments, potentially stepping away from ODIs.

Starc, who had largely stayed away from the IPL during his peak years to focus on his national duties and manage his workload, revealed his thoughts on this shift at a press conference following KKR’s emphatic win over Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the IPL 2024 final by eight wickets. KKR secured their third IPL title, with Starc playing a pivotal role.

“The last nine years, I’ve prioritised Australian cricket. I have given myself a chance to give my body a break and spend some time away from cricket with my wife as well, so that’s certainly been where my head’s been for the last nine years,” Starc said at a press conference.

“Moving forward… look, I am certainly closer to the end of my career than the start. One format may drop off. There is long time before the next one-day World Cup and whether that format continues for me or not… it may open doors for more franchise cricket.”

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this season,” he said. “It’s been great, it leads into the World Cup, that’s the other side of the benefit of being here against some amazing players in an amazing tournament. It’s a great lead-up to a World Cup.

“Next year – I don’t know the schedule exactly – but I’ve enjoyed it, I look forward to being back next year and hopefully be seen in purple and gold [KKR’s colours] again.”

Starc’s consideration of dropping ODIs from his cricketing calendar could mean more appearances in franchise cricket, including the IPL. Despite being the most expensive player in IPL auction history, fetched for Rs. 24.75 crore by KKR, Starc had a tough start to the season. He conceded 100 runs in his first two games without taking a wicket, but his performance dramatically improved as the tournament progressed.

Starc’s match-winning figures of 3-34 and 2-14 in Qualifier 1 and the final, respectively, against SRH showcased his ability to perform under pressure. His efforts were instrumental in KKR’s dominant campaign, ending with a resounding victory in the final.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this season,” Starc said. “It’s been great, it leads into the World Cup, that’s the other side of the benefit of being here against some amazing players in an amazing tournament. It’s a great lead-up to a World Cup. Next year – I don’t know the schedule exactly – but I’ve enjoyed it, I look forward to being back next year and hopefully be seen in purple and gold (KKR’s colours) again,” he said.

“I’ve played a lot of cricket, so I know how to manage myself. I haven’t played a lot of T20 cricket in the last few years, so for me, it was trying to find that rhythm of [the] T20 format, and trying to stay ahead of batters,” Starc concluded.

–IANS

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