England openers Rory Burns and Dom Sibley yesterday ensured the hosts made a sound if cautious start to the second and final Test against a much-changed New Zealand, reaching 67-0 at lunch at Edgbaston.
Burns, fresh from his hundred in last week’s drawn first Test at Lord’s, was 32 not out, with Sibley 31 not out on his Warwickshire home ground.
England captain Joe Root won the toss and batted despite the overcast conditions that appeared to favor his attack, once again without a specialist spinner.
New Zealand made an exceptional six changes from Lord’s, with the Black Caps clearly conscious of wanting to field their strongest team for next week’s inaugural World Test Championship final against India in Southampton.
Three were injury-enforced, but, with captain and star batsman Kane Williamson (elbow), spinner Mitchell Santner (cut finger) and B.J. Watling, whose withdrawal due to a back problem was only announced shortly before the toss, all missing.
Their places were taken by Will Young, Ajaz Patel and Tom Blundell respectively.
Spearhead quick Tim Southee, all-rounder Colin de Grandhomme and towering paceman Kyle Jamieson were all apparently rested ahead of the showpiece match with India.
Experienced left-arm seamer Trent Boult, back in the team after family leave, and Matt Henry took the new ball in place of Southee and Jamieson, with Daryl Mitchell replacing De Grandhomme.
Tom Latham led New Zealand in Williamson’s absence.
James Anderson’s 162nd appearance saw him become England’s most-capped Test player, breaking the record he had shared with retired former captain Alastair Cook.
England made one change, with fast bowler Olly Stone replacing Ollie Robinson who, following a successful on-field Test debut at Lord’s, was suspended from international cricket after the emergence of historic racist and sexist Twitter posts.
Despite the furor over Robinson’s tweets, both teams again stood for a “moment of unity” before play designed to show their opposition to discrimination within cricket.
TWO AND TWO: Lin Chen-hao of Taiwan finished seventh in the women’s U-48kg category, winning two bouts before losses the quarter-finals and a repechage match Naohisa Takato yesterday won Japan’s first gold medal at their home Olympics, beating Taiwan’s Yang Yung-wei in the men’s under-60kg judo final. Yang’s second-place finish is Taiwan’s first medal in Tokyo and the nation’s first-ever medal in an Olympics judo competition. Kosovo’s Distria Krasniqi beat Japan’s Funa Tonaki in the women’s under-48kg final less than an hour before Takato made sure that his team would not have a double heartbreak on the opening day of competition in its beloved homegrown martial art. Takato won his final three bouts in sudden-death golden score, but he took the final a bit anticlimactically after Yang committed
Four key men’s doubles pairings — dubbed by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) as “the group of death” — are to take over two courts side-by-side today just after midday in Tokyo, in matches that already have the badminton world abuzz. What is formally known as Group A pits pairings from Taiwan, Indonesia, India and Britain against one another — the former three ranked in the top 10. Taiwanese pairing Lee Yang and Wang Chi-lin are set to challenge Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty of India, while world No. 1 duo Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo of Indonesia are to
After complaining about flying economy class to the Olympic Games, Taiwanese badminton player Tai Tzu-ying appeared satisfied with her hotel room in Tokyo, praising its proximity to the badminton venue. “It saves commuting time and allows more time to rest,” the 27-year-old Tai wrote on Instagram yesterday morning. “It’s very good.” The Athletes’ Village is about 50 minutes by car from the badminton venue, but the hotel is only a 10-minute drive, she said. “It’ll give me more time to rest and prepare, whether before or after a match,” Tai added. Taiwan’s badminton team is staying at the Marroad Inn Tokyo in Chofu City,
KEEP ’EM COMING: In her first Olympic appearance, Lo set a high bar, fighting her way to the final bouts, and earning Taiwan its second medal after Yang Yung-wei’s silver Taiwan’s Lo Chia-ling yesterday clinched the nation’s second medal at the Tokyo Olympics, grabbing a bronze medal in taekwondo in the women’s 57kg class. Nineteen-year-old Lo beat Nigeria’s Tekiath Ben Yessouf 10-6 at Tokyo’s Makuhari Messe convention center. Lo, who is making her first appearance in the Olympic Games, worked her way to the bronze medal contest with an early 20-18 win against South Korea’s Lee Ah-reum in the round of 16, before dropping Canada’s Skylar Park 18-7 in the quarter-final. It was Anastasija Zolotic of the US who denied the former World Taekwondo Junior Championship gold medalist a chance to fight for