Steve Smith and David Warner told they must prove themselves in IPL

Smith and Warner have been on the sidelines for the past 12 months. (AFP)
Updated 21 March 2019
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Steve Smith and David Warner told they must prove themselves in IPL

  • Ricky Ponting warns disgraced duo they can take nothing for granted when it comes to World Cup selection.
  • Cash rich IPL gets under way on Saturday.

LONDON: Disgraced Australian duo Steve Smith and David Warner have been told they have it all to prove as they return to top-level cricket.
The pair finished their year-long ban for ball-tampering this week and will play in the big-bucks Indian Premier League, which gets under way tomorrow.
The timing of the cash-rich Twenty20 circus is awkward, however, wrapping up less than three weeks before the start of the World Cup in England and Wales. It has long been assumed that both would walk back into the side, but former Australia captain Ricky Ponting has warned them they need to get runs in India if they are to get on the place to the 50-over global showpiece.
“Those guys have not played any high level cricket for a long time,” Ponting told the Times of India newspaper.
“They still have to prove they are the best players.
“If they don’t have a good IPL, then there will be a few more question marks regarding their names,” said Ponting, who is head coach IPL side Delhi Capitals.
The ban only included international and state-level games so both Smith and Warner were able to play in the Bangladesh Premier League but both soon bowed out because of elbow injuries, and now they are keen to get noticed again by Australia’s selectors.
The lucrative league kicks off with three-time winners and defending champions Chennai Super Kings, captained by Mahendra Singh Dhoni, hosting Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore on Saturday.
Warner will play for Sunrisers Hyderabad along with Afghan spin sensation Rashid Khan and New Zealand’s Kane Williamson against Kolkata Knight Riders on Sunday.
Smith is likely to be in action for Rajasthan Royals, along with England’s Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler, on Monday against Delhi Capitals.


Eriksen late show keeps Spurs on course for top four finish

Updated 24 April 2019
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Eriksen late show keeps Spurs on course for top four finish

  • Erikssen’s long-range strike gave Spurs the win over Brighton

LONDON: After bombarding the Brighton goal without success throughout the game, Tottenham was getting frustrated.
So frustrated that, with Harry Kane’s injury depleting Tottenham’s striking options, out-of-favor Vincent Janssen was summoned from the bench for his first appearance in 20 months for the final 10 minutes.
In the end, though, it was a more familiar name that delivered the breakthrough. Christian Erikssen’s long-range strike inside the near post gave Spurs a 1-0 win over Brighton on Tuesday that kept his team’s bid for a Champions League spot on track.
The goal finally came in the 88th minute when the Dane was teed up by Dele Alli and squeezed the ball beyond the reach of diving goalkeeper Mat Ryan.
The goal nudged Tottenham three points clear of Chelsea in fourth Champions League qualification place. Arsenal is a further point behind in fifth place ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Wolverhampton.
By conceding a late goal, Brighton was denied a point in its bid to stay in the Premier League and remains three points ahead of Cardiff, which occupies the final relegation place.
But another of Brighton’s relegation rivals also conceded late — after scoring early.
The earliest-ever goal in a Premier League game.
Shane Long netted after 7.69 seconds for Southampton but Andre Gray leveled in the 90th minute to grab a 1-1 draw for Watford.
Southampton is three points ahead of Brighton and six clear of the drop zone with three games remaining.