Ashes boycott looms as players hit back in response to explosive Cricket Australia email
(Sydney Morning Herald)

Players are hinting at an Ashes boycott in the wake of an explosive email sent by Cricket Australia that told players they would not be paid beyond June 30 unless they accept a proposed overhaul of player remuneration.

The provocative email, from James Sutherland, came after no progress was made in negotiations on Thursday and Peter Handscomb’s comments to Fairfax Media this week in which the Test batsmen said all players should be treated equally.

Who is to blame in cricket’s ugly pay dispute? (Sydney Morning Herald)

There has been nothing private about this battle.

That the two parties can’t find any common ground on how to carve up more than $400 million in expected player pay over the next five years seems ridiculous. The sport appears awash in cash, even though CA does have sponsorship issues and questions abound over the next TV rights deal for international action and the Big Bash League because of the troubled broadcast media landscape.

Heard what the pacers are doing this IPL… Knuckle cracking (The Indian Express)

Like for instance Australian and Gujarat Lions’ seamer Andew Tye, for whom the knuckleball is more like a stock delivery. In fact, two of his three hat-trick deliveries were fashioned with the knuckles. A bevy of Indian bowlers too have suddenly warmed up to its raking potential, like Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohit Sharma and Siddharth Kaul. Sharma, who says he learnt if from Bhuvneshwar early this season, has been quite proficient with it at the death. Langeveldt will be surprised to learn how fast they have picked it. Bhuvneshwar began practising towards the end of the Australia Test series while Sharma began dabbling with it as recent as this IPL.

Wrist spinners touch century mark (The Hindu)

Out of the 15 wrist spinners seen in action in the VIVO IPL-10, only Gujarat Lions’ Shivil Kaushik went wicketless. He was ruled out of the competition with an injury after playing three matches.

The other 14 are led by Rising Pune Supergiant’s Imran Tahir (18 at 20.50); after playing 12 matches the South African has gone home.

Daniel Vettori’s guidance did wonders for Pawan Negi (Hindustan Times)

“It was a great experience to work with our bowling coach Daniel Vettori. I used to talk to him all the time before the start of the season and he has given me a lot of advice on how to improve my game,” said Negi.

“Daniel is a left-arm spinner himself and as a result, it was easy for him to guide me. He was always there for all of us during practice and the credit for our growth goes largely to his training tactics. I also learnt a lot from bowling with (Yuzvendra) Chahal.”

‘It will be an India-Australia CT final’ (The Hindu)

The 2015 World Cup winning skipper said that the conditions in England would be the key.

“The actual conditions in the UK are going to play a big part. So I think about the Australian team for example, if there is swing and seam in the pitch I think the Australian fast bowlers are going to be really tough to face. That will hold Australia in good stead. (Mitchell) Starc, (James) Pattinson, (Josh) Hazlewood, (Pat) Cummins… those four fast bowlers bowl 140-150kmh so if there is any swing or seam they will be tough to face.”

Sending Champions Trophy team is wise (Deccan Chronicle)

Confirmation of India’s participation in the Champions Trophy was the most desirable outcome of the BCCI’s special general meeting last week. Anything else would have been destructive, not only for the tournament, but the sport itself. Mutually antagonistic positions adopted by the BCCI and ICC had set cricket on a dangerous roller-coaster ride in recent months. India skipping the Champions Trophy would have precipitated a split that could have left the sport fractured beyond repair. Thankfully, saner counsels prevailed.

Moeen Ali: I play some stinking shots, but I want to be known as a batsman (The Telegraph)

“Sometimes I would genuinely rather get out like that than block and ‘nick off’. It might be the wrong option, but at least I’m trying to score runs.

“I want to be true to myself. When I get dropped… or when I finish, I’d rather look back and think ‘You know what, I played the way I wanted to play – I didn’t play like anybody else, I wasn’t afraid to use my feet and try to smack it over mid-on which I thought at the time was the right thing to do.'”

Where recently it shone so bright, South Africa’s rainbow has embarked on a downward curve (The Telegraph)

South Africa’s cricketers competed so strongly on the world stage after readmission in 1991 that they could be bracketed among the best. They have only lost one Test series in England, in 1998, and they rose to be number one in the Test rankings under Graeme Smith. In one-day internationals they are still ranked number one, but the rainbow – having shone gloriously – is embarked on a downward curve.

The imperative to observe quotas, and the departure of seasoned players to England as Kolpaks, are now biting. Last autumn South Africa wiped out Australia 5-0 in a one-day home series.