England, NZ coaches differ on T20 internationals

New Zealand’s Martin Guptill (R) bats watched by England’s wicketkeeper Jos Buttler (L) during the Twenty20 Tri Series international cricket match between New Zealand and England at Seddon Park in Hamilton on February 18, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 19 February 2018
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England, NZ coaches differ on T20 internationals

WELLINGTON, New Zealand: New Zealand coach Mike Hesson has come out in strong support of the Twenty20 format, saying it forms a "meaningful" part of the international game.
Hesson was responding to comments from England coach Trevor Bayliss who has called for Twenty20 cricket to be removed from the international schedule and confined to franchise tournaments such as the Indian Premier League or Australia's Big Bash League.
Bayliss, speaking after England's two-run win over New Zealand in a tri-series Twenty20 match on Sunday, said players and coaches risked blowout because of the demands of T20 matches on top of tests and one-day games.
He highlighted that some members of the current England team had played five Ashes tests and five one-day internationals in Australia before playing four T20 matches in the current Trans-Tasman tri-series. They now face a tour of New Zealand which incorporates all three formats.
"Look, I haven't changed my opinion on it. I wouldn't play T20 internationals," Bayliss told Sky Sports. "If we continue putting on so many games there'll be a certain amount of blowout with not just players but coaches as well.
"If you want to play a World Cup every four years or whatever it is, maybe six months before you get the international teams and let them play some T20 cricket. But I'd just let the franchises play (beyond that)."
Hesson told reporters on Monday that Twenty20 had an important role to play in international cricket. He agreed with Bayliss that the demands on players have to be managed but said the short format was critical to smaller nations such as New Zealand.
"There's always a workload issue, I think that's fair," Hesson said. "But there's also a revenue-generation issue as well.
"In some countries that's not as big a deal but for New Zealand Cricket, to get 35,000 people to Eden Park or whatever it was the other day is huge for us, huge for the game and huge for the promotion of the game. And we certainly get great support for T20 internationals over here."
Asked if T20 internationals are meaningful, Hesson replied: "Too right they are. Every international you play is incredibly meaningful.
"You've got guys that only play T20 and that's their chance to play international cricket, so I think absolutely it's meaningful."


“Captain fantastic” Harry Kane to the rescue as England beat Tunisia at the death

Updated 39 min 3 sec ago
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“Captain fantastic” Harry Kane to the rescue as England beat Tunisia at the death

  • Harry Kane came to the rescue with two goals, the second a dramatic injury-time winner
  • England had started brightly in a blur of passing and movement and could have been two goals up inside the first four minutes

VOLGOGRAD, Russia: Captain Harry Kane came to the rescue with two goals, the second a dramatic injury-time winner, as England began their World Cup Group G campaign with a stuttering 2-1 win over Tunisia on Monday.
Gareth Southgate’s men almost paid a heavy price for missing a slew of first-half chances when Tunisia’s Ferjani Sassi slotted home a softly-awarded penalty 20 minutes before half-time.
And the north Africans were still level as the game went past the 90-minute mark.
But Harry Maguire won a header from a corner and Kane was on hand at the far post to nod in the winner before being mobbed by his ecstatic teammates.
“I’m so proud of the lads,” Kane said. “They kept going, kept going to the last second.
“I am absolutely buzzing, everyone on the staff is. It shows good character to get the job done.”
England had started brightly in a blur of passing and movement and could have been two goals up inside the first four minutes.
First Jordan Henderson’s lofted first-time pass released Dele Alli and when the ball eventually broke to Jesse Lingard he saw his shot from six yards saved by the outstretched left boot of Mouez Hassen in the Tunisia goal.
Kane had been kept quiet in the opening salvos but he exploded into action in the 11th minute when he cut inside from the left and saw his shot from the edge of the box deflected wide for a corner.
Ashley Young delivered the set piece for John Stones to rise highest and meet with a powerful header. Hassen saved acrobatically but Kane was on hand to tap home the rebound with his right foot and open his World Cup account.
Hassen, who had injured his left shoulder making an earlier save, could not continue and left the field in tears as he was replaced in goal by Farouk Ben Mustapha.
England continued to press and were made to pay for not converting a succession of chances when they conceded a soft penalty.
Kyle Walker swung a lazy arm across Fakhreddine Ben Youssef who fell as if poleaxed and Colombian referee Wilmar Roldan pointed to the spot, with his decision being upheld by the VAR.
Ferjani Sassi took one step and fired home confidently past the hitherto unemployed Jordan Pickford and Tunisia who had been outplayed for the first half-hour were somehow level 10 minutes before half-time.
Still there was time for Lingard to come close again twice, first from a goalbound shot and then a dink over the keeper which agonizingly struck the post.
Alli too hit the woodwork with a header and England went into half-time wondering how they had not sealed victory already.
England still enjoyed the lion’s share of possession but could not find the same zip and penetration they had enjoyed at the start of the first half.
The ineffective Sterling gave way to Marcus Rashford with just over 20 minutes to go and the Manchester United man almost fashioned a chance straight away with a jinking run into the box.