Ali Martin

Author's details

Name: Ali Martin
Date registered: February 17, 2015
URL: http://www.theguardian.com/sport/cycling

Latest posts

  1. Tom Westley and Dawid Malan named in England squad for third Test — July 20, 2017
  2. England’s Gary Ballance ruled out of third Test with fractured finger — July 18, 2017
  3. Alastair Cook relishes his new role back in the England engine room — July 12, 2017
  4. AB de Villiers absence spells danger for Test cricket, says Mike Brearley — July 4, 2017
  5. Gary Ballance recalled to England Test team against South Africa — June 30, 2017

Author's posts listings

Jul 20

Tom Westley and Dawid Malan named in England squad for third Test

• Westley to make Test debut at No3 in place of Gary Ballance
• Surrey opener Mark Stoneman overlooked for Oval Test

Tom Westley has already tasted success against South Africa this summer and now the Essex right-hander believes this familiarity with their bowlers could help ease the jump to Test cricket when he makes his England debut next Thursday.

Westley, who scored an unbeaten 106 against the tourists for England Lions last month, has been handed the No3 spot in Joe Root’s side following the fractured index finger that ruled Gary Ballance out of the third Test at the Kia Oval. He is part of a 13-man squad who include the similarly uncapped Dawid Malan of Middlesex and sees the bowling options unchanged.

Related: Hamid Qadri: the 16-year-old spinning a message of joy from Kandahar to Derby | Donald McRae

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jul/20/tom-westley-dawid-malan-england-squad-third-test

Jul 18

England’s Gary Ballance ruled out of third Test with fractured finger

• X-ray reveals crack on England batsman’s left index finger
• Mark Stoneman, Dawid Malan and Tom Westley wait in the wings

Gary Ballance has seen his third crack at Test cricket brought to a halt by a hairline fracture to his left index finger suffered during England’s heavy defeat to South Africa at Trent Bridge.

Ballance was struck by Morne Morkel during England’s fourth day collapse as the tourists went level in the four-match series and while he had told the team management he was ready to play on, a hand specialist seen on Tuesday night ruled him out of next week’s third Test.

Related: Hamid Qadri: the 16-year-old spinning a message of joy from Kandahar to Derby | Donald McRae

Related: England beat South Africa in tense finish to reach Women’s World Cup final

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jul/18/gary-ballance-england-test-fractures-index-finger

Jul 12

Alastair Cook relishes his new role back in the England engine room

• Second-innings 69 was ‘worth double’, according to Joe Root
• Mark Wood keen to build on his successes at No10 and with the ball

Alastair Cook is in seemingly relaxed mood about his return to the rank and file of the England team, although his new life only truly hit home during the victory against South Africa at Lord’s last week when one of his previous subordinates, Ben Stokes, moved him in the field.

After four years at the Test tiller, Cook handed over to Joe Root and the new vice‑captain, Stokes, at the start of the year, allowing this next generation to freshen up a stagnating team while setting his own sights on swelling his stash of runs as England’s all-time leading scorer.

Related: Why England’s Alastair Cook deserves more than a little love | Barney Ronay

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jul/12/alastair-cook-england-south-africa-trent-bridge-second-test

Jul 04

AB de Villiers absence spells danger for Test cricket, says Mike Brearley

• World Cricket Committee says competitive levels must be maintained
• Stuart Broad revels in ‘fresh start’ with Joe Root against South Africa

AB de Villiers’ absence from the South Africa team at Lord’s this week has been called a “red flag” for Test cricket in a warning from the MCC World Cricket Committee about a looming crisis for the longest format amid the rise of domestic Twenty20 leagues.

De Villiers, the leading South African batsman of his generation, will not be a headache for England’s new captain, Joe Root, this Thursday as he is taking a sabbatical from facing the red ball. It began last year in a bid to manage his workload, and has recently been tipped to retire from Tests by the end of 2017.

Related: South Africa confident of Test success despite absence of AB De Villiers | Vic Marks

Related: ‘The nastiest match I ever played in’: England v South Africa, Headingley 1998 | Rob Smyth

Related: Mark Wood: ‘I want to be a bowler that can change the game for England’

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jul/04/mike-brearley-ab-de-villiers-south-africa-england-test

Jun 30

Gary Ballance recalled to England Test team against South Africa

• Yorkshireman will bat at No3, with Joe Root dropping to No4
• Spin-bowling all-rounder Liam Dawson also recalled

Gary Ballance has been recalled to the England Test team for the series opener against South Africa at Lord’s on Thursday and will bat at No3 in a move that takes Joe Root down one place to his favourite position in what will be his first match as captain, while Middlesex’s Toby Roland-Jones could make his debut on familiar turf.

Related: England may turn to Gary Ballance again but bowling remains the problem | Vic Marks

Related: Zafar Ansari: ‘If money was a motivation I would have stayed longer in cricket’

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/30/gary-ballance-test-recall-england-south-africa

Jun 24

Tom Curran determined to build on confident start in England decider

• England can clinch T20 series against South Africa in Cardiff
• Dawid Malan and Craig Overton set to be handed debuts

After their Champions Trophy semi-final meltdown against Pakistan, the England captain, Eoin Morgan, bemoaned a lack of knockout experience in his side. And so while not by design, Friday’s collapse in Taunton has at least given them a winner-takes-all Twenty20 finale against South Africa on Sunday and on the ground where it all went wrong less than a fortnight ago.

Related: Tom Curran ‘giddy’ after learning of England call with 4.30am text message

Related: South Africa edge thriller as England count cost of Jason Roy dismissal

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/24/england-south-africa-t20-decider-cardiff-tom-curran

Jun 22

Ireland to seek talks over Lord’s Test after being granted full-member status

• Ireland and Afghanistan are granted full-member status of ICC
• Cricket Ireland chief cites ‘25,000 bums on seats at Lord’s in May’

Ireland will hold talks with the England and Wales Cricket Board over a possible Lord’s Test in 2019 after they and Afghanistan were granted full-member status of the International Cricket Council on Thursday.

The two countries, whose applications were voted for unanimously by the ICC’s Full Council as part of an overhaul of its constitution, become the first new Test nations since Bangladesh were awarded top-level status in 2000 and take the number of full members from 10 to 12.

Related: England’s Stuart Broad doubtful for South Africa Test with heel injury

Related: Amnesty International: fans arrested in India for cheering Pakistan win ‘must be freed’

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/22/ireland-ecb-talks-lords-test-2019-icc

Jun 22

England’s Stuart Broad doubtful for South Africa Test with heel injury

• Pace bowler withdrew from Nottinghamshire’s win against Leicestershire
• England face South Africa at Taunton for the second Twenty20 on Friday

Stuart Broad is waiting to learn the full extent of a mystery heel injury that has thrown into doubt the fast bowler’s participation in the first Test against South Africa next month.

Related: Jonny Bairstow and Alex Hales send England cruising past South Africa

Related: County cricket: Essex thrash Warwickshire, Durham finally win – as it happened

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/22/england-stuart-broad-doubtful-first-test-south-africa-heel-injury

Jun 20

England to hand leg-spinner Mason Crane debut in T20 against South Africa

• Eoin Morgan backs 20-year-old against batsmen of AB de Villiers’s class
• ‘He is still very young … the earlier he gets into his apprenticeship the better’

Mason Crane will be tossed the ball for the first time in international cricket on Wednesday, with the England captain, Eoin Morgan, believing the challenge of facing AB de Villiers to be an ideal test of the leg-spinner’s temperament.

Related: If the ball is anything to go by we could be tickled pink by cricket day-nighters | The Spin

Related: Champions Trophy 2017 review: our writers’ awards and hopes

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/20/england-leg-spinner-mason-crane-debut-t20-south-africa-cricket

Jun 19

England’s Dawid Malan pressing for regular place in South Africa T20 games

• Middlesex left-hander among five new faces
• Malan: ‘It is all about putting pressure on’

Somewhat after the Lord Mayor’s show that was Pakistan’s bewildering victory against India in the Champions Trophy final comes a Twenty20 series between England and South Africa starting at Hampshire’s Ageas Bowl on Wednesday. It is a chance for Eoin Morgan’s beaten semi-finalists to get back in the international saddle.

This is not all of them, of course. With the Test series against the Proteas next month taking precedence over this short, sharp and slightly contextless three-match encounter, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Jake Ball and Adil Rashid have been given a full breather. Mark Wood and Jonny Bairstow will also duck out after one and two games respectively, joining the rest in tuning up for Test duty in the pink-ball county round that starts next week.

Related: Pakistan thrash sorry England to reach Champions Trophy final

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/19/england-dawid-malan-five-uncapped-players-south-africa-odis

Jun 15

Joe Root says England must stick with swashbuckling style despite defeat

• Root tells England to focus on 2019 World Cup after blowing ‘golden chance’
• Trevor Bayliss says England will look to widen pool of ODI players

A crestfallen Joe Root admitted England blew a “golden chance” to convert two years of one-day progress into a trophy with their Champions Trophy semi-final defeat to Pakistan but insisted the disappointment must not see them alter from their current course.

Eoin Morgan, the captain, has long stated that the eight-team tournament was a staging post for the 2019 World Cup on home soil but the manner of their eight-wicket humbling in Cardiff, where they were bowled out for 211 on a used surface, has prompted questions over their ability to adapt to conditions beyond flat batting tracks and the pressure of knockout cricket.

Related: England’s familiar exit leaves ECB’s dream scenario out of reach

Related: Eoin Morgan admits to England regrets after dismal Champions Trophy exit

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/15/joe-root-england-pakistan-2019-world-cup

Jun 13

England turn to Bairstow for Champions Trophy semi-final against Pakistan

• Yorkshireman to replace Jason Roy as opener in only change
• Jonny’s best attribute has been his relentless attitude, says Eoin Morgan

Eoin Morgan has tipped the “relentless attitude” of Jonny Bairstow to come to the fore on Wednesday as England make one change to their batting lineup for the Champions Trophy semi-final with Pakistan in Cardiff.

The England captain stopped short of naming his XI before a toss he admitted he hopes to lose – a reused pitch at Sophia Gardens is behind that – but could do little to play down the fact Jason Roy has been dropped after the misfiring opener played a minimal part in a training session and Bairstow was the first batsman in the nets.

Related: England may find low-scoring Cardiff a hindrance in Champions Trophy semi | Vic Marks

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/13/england-jonny-bairstow-pakistan-champions-trophy-eoin-morgan-cricket

Jun 11

Ben Stokes: England’s swashbuckling hero strives to reach next level

• Stokes credits quality and atmospheres in IPL with helping develop his game
• All-rounder hit career-best 102 against Australia in Champions Trophy

Ben Stokes could stride into the Champions Trophy semi-final on Wednesday believing himself to be invincible at present but the England all-rounder has said he is not the type to get carried away with his performances; unsatisfied, he will continue striving to reach new levels.

Having bounced Australia out of the tournament exit door at Edgbaston with his career-best unbeaten 102, as Eoin Morgan’s side made it three wins from three in the group stage, Stokes underlined his status as the player all other teams covet and added more clout to the argument that we are witnessing a once‑in-a-generation cricketer.

Related: Eoin Morgan energises Edgbaston with return to peak power against Australia | Ali Martin

Related: England’s carefree Eoin Morgan and Ben Stokes ensure Australia exit

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/11/ben-stokes-england-swashbuckling-hero-striving-reach-next-level-champions-trophy

Jun 09

Steve Smith calls England ‘predictable’ ahead of Champions Trophy showdown

• Smith wary of ‘dangerous batters’ Australia will face at Edgbaston
• Eoin Morgan: ‘If you never play an Ashes test this is the closest you will get’

Eoin Morgan has described facing Australia in a one-day tournament as being as close as he will come to experiencing the heat of an Ashes series. But as his players prepared for a free shot at sending their rivals home from the Champions Trophy, the England captain received a flavour of its intensity when his counterpart Steve Smith described his tactics as “predictable”.

Morgan, an unused squad player on England’s victorious 2010-11 Ashes tour, became a limited-overs specialist after a 16-cap Test career that only briefly flickered and since taking over the limited overs captaincy at the start of the 2015 World Cup has led a revival that now sees them already booked into Wednesday’s first semi-final.

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/09/steve-smith-australia-champions-trophy-eoin-morgan

Jun 08

Eoin Morgan is ‘single biggest factor’ in England’s ODI revival, says Farbrace

• Assistant coach says Morgan has unlocked team’s white-ball potential
• England set to keep faith with misfiring Jason Roy against Australia

Eoin Morgan has been singled out as the most important figure behind England’s one-day revival by the team’s assistant coach, Paul Farbrace, who believes their current barnstorming approach to the format comes down to the captain’s near relentless backing of his players.

After wins over Bangladesh and New Zealand, England go into Saturday’s group game against Australia at Edgbaston with a Champions Trophy semi-final already sewn up and their one headache being whether to stick with Jason Roy or parachute in Jonny Bairstow as opener.

Related: India set Sri Lanka 322 to win at the ICC Champions Trophy – live!

Related: David Warner says punching Joe Root was turning point off and on pitch

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/08/eoin-morgan-players-england-farbrace-australia

Jun 08

David Warner says punching Joe Root was turning point off and on pitch

The Australia vice-captain can still be an aggressive player but is now teetotal and views his 2013 altercation with England’s Joe Root as pivotal to changing him as a person and a player

The Reverend David Warner, as he is now known by his Australia team-mates, has pointed to his late-night swing at Joe Root in Birmingham’s Walkabout bar four years ago as the turning point in his career, one that has led to him becoming the most feared of openers on the field while transforming him into a mild family man off it.

Related: David Warner accuses Cricket Australia of hurting team’s bid to beat England

There are things you have to think about as a youngster. ‘What can or can’t I do?’

Related: David Warner lifts lid on Walkabout bar run-in with Joe Root

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/jun/08/david-warner-reformed-australia-england-champions-trophy

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