The most recent cricket free agent news.
Fantasy AnalysisHaving already retired from the ODI format, the experienced allrounder has not played at the international level for New Zealand since the semi-final loss in the World T20 to England in 2016. At 38 years old, the now T20 specialist brings a wealth of experience and batting firepower to the Birmingham side. Elliot played 83 ODIs for New Zealand with the highlight being the unforgettable 2015 World Cup semifinal where he produced the moment of New Zealand's limited overs cricket history to take the side to their first final.
Fantasy AnalysisThe year-long ban is effective from the moment he was provisionally suspended from the game, which was earlier in the month on March 14. "I was approached twice and it was my mistake that I did not report it to PCB's anti-corruption unit," said Irfan. The pace bowler can, however, have the suspension shortened to six months if he assists the Pakistan Cricket Board with their ongoing investigation into the corruption scandal now surrounding the PSL.
Fantasy AnalysisWhile the New Zealand top-order batsmen were giving the South African attack fits, the recently-returned Morkel was there to knock out danger-man after danger-man. His first Test four-for since Christmas 2015 as the big-bodied pace bowler provides yet another seamer in the South African attack. Bowling in his 74th Test, this was his 14th career four-for with six five-fors; however, he's never notched a 10-wicket haul.
Fantasy AnalysisThough the 28-year-old cracked the Test squad for the first time in November of 2016 against Pakistan, he's quickly turned into a consistent opener for the Black Caps. Raval's first-innings half-century was his third in the past four innings with no scores below 36 in that time. While he's yet to score a Test ton, with his patience and form of late, it seems only a matter of time, having set his high score in back-to-back innings.
Fantasy AnalysisStepping into the crease at 59/3 and seeing the skipper dismissed less than an over later, things looked dire for Australia with six wickets and 70 overs of play remaining. However, a massive 373-ball, 124-run partnership between Marsh and Peter Handscomb helped earn Australia a result they desperately needed. While he doesn't have the power or the prestige of his brother, Mitchell Marsh, the 33-year-old showed he can still be valuable in the middle order.
Fantasy AnalysisIf Bangladesh win this Test it’ll be on the back of Al Hasan. After scoring a hundred in the first innings the allrounder took three key wickets to keep Bangladesh in the match. His first wicket was Asela Gunaratne who was rapped on the front pad without offering a shot and fired by umpire Aleem Dar. Next came Niroshan Dickwella on five, who’s attempted paddle sweep ended up in the hands of wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim. Al Hasan’s last victim was century-maker Dimuth Karunaratne who edged the second new ball to Soumya Sarkar at first slip. The world’s number two allrounder ended day 4 with figures of three for 61.
Fantasy AnalysisFollowing his scores of 23 and eight in the first test, Al Hasan built on these starts to produce an innings of 116 from 159 balls and including 10 fours. With the ball in Sri Lanka's first innings, Al Hasan picked up two wickets while conceding 80 runs from his 33 overs bowled.
Fantasy AnalysisThe 34-year-old bowler has two weeks to respond to the charges of failing to disclose "any approaches or invitations received by the Participant to engage in Corrupt Conduct under this Anti-Corruption Code," Code Article 2.4.4 states under the PCB Anti-Corruption Code. Irfan last bowled for the Islamabad United in the Pakistan Super League and has 60 ODI caps and 20 T20I appearances for Pakistan internationally.
Fantasy AnalysisWith 33 Test caps to his name, this recent run of poor form including a second innings duck in the first Test of the series led to Mahmudullah's demise on the Test squad. With an average over 30 and 13 career half-centuries in Test cricket, he's one of the most experienced batsmen in the side, but his recent run led to his removal. Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hassan backed Mahmudullah's return for the following ODI and T20I series against Sri Lanka in March and early April.
Fantasy AnalysisTwo for 62 might not sound like much but after 14 months out of the international side thanks to a back injury the 32-year-old fast bowler was quite happy. "For me to break that mental barrier was quite pleasing.and now I can put those things to rest and just focus on cricket," Morkel said. "All those demons that were on my mind, I managed to control it and get through it. I have that peace of mind that I can play Test matches again."
Fantasy AnalysisMahmuduallah was one of Herath's six victims when he was struck flush on the back pad and given lbw by umpire Marais Erasmus. It was Mahmuduallah's second failure in the match, he only managed eight in first innings before being bowled by Lahiru Kumara. The 31-year-old batsman has seven ducks in Test cricket, this is the first in 2017.
Fantasy AnalysisHaving made a bright start to international cricket against Pakistan, Raval made a series of starts without pushing on against Bangladesh. Now with the three test series against the stronger opposition of South Africa, Raval showed positive signs with a score of 52 coming from 102 balls in the first innings. Together with captain Kane Williamson, the pair put on a century stand, the highest for the second wicket against South Africa.
Fantasy AnalysisBy the time Marsh was dismissed he had seen Australia to an incredibly important 31-run first-innings lead, it grew to 48 by stumps. The elder Marsh brother was vital to two 50-run stands, one with Matt Renshaw the other with Matthew Wade. He contributed 25 and 28 respectively. The 33-year-old used a review to overturn a lbw decision before he brought up his sixth Test 50. A tired shot across the line caught by Karun Nair at mid-wicket was Marsh's downfall. He lasted 197 balls and currently has the top score in Australia's first innings.
Fantasy AnalysisPromoted to open the batting alongside David Warner, Marsh batted through to the seventh over of the innings until he was dismissed for a duck. Marsh was trapped in front LBW by Ravichandran Ashwin who opened the bowling for India in both innings and has taken three wickets in the current innings with just the four wickets down.
Fantasy AnalysisAfter a three-month absence from playing thanks to recurring back issues, Morkel made his return in the domestic 50-overs cup. While his bowling figures were nothing to write home about, his return to competitive cricket is a positive sign for the South African attack as he looks to return for the upcoming three-match Test series at New Zealand, beginning in March. Morkel hasn't played in a Test since January 2016 at Centurion against England.
Fantasy AnalysisSteyn broke a bone in his shoulder back in November and has already begun swimming, putting him ahead of his schedule. The 33-year-old has 26 five-fors in his Test career to go along with 25 four-fors, and his return to the South Africa attack, along with Morne Morkel, would provide a breath of fresh air in the middle of a lengthy tour that will include ODIs, the Champions Trophy, and T20Is along with the four Tests that Steyn aims to return for.
Fantasy AnalysisRussell recently played in the Big Bash League for the Sydney Thunder, but took part in his last internationals for the West Indies in August and had been widely assumed to be in violation of the doping code. If he does not appeal (and then win his appeal), he'll miss the Pakistan Super League (for which a replacement has already been named), the India Premier League, the NatWest T20 Blast (for which he plays for Nottinghamshire), and the Caribbean Premier League in addition to his international commitments for the Windies.
Fantasy AnalysisMarsh gave Scorchers the urgency their chase of 135 runs, he brought up his half-century with a massive six over mid-wicket while his partner, opening batsman Michael Klinger, was still on 29. The 33-year-old's 57 contained seven boundaries and two sixes and helped Scorchers obtain the target in just 13.5 overs. Scorchers secured the top spot in the BBL with their win over Hurricanes and will play Stars in the first semi-final at their home ground on January 24.
Fantasy AnalysisIt didn't take long for Pietersen to get going in Renegades' cross-town rematch, stroking Stars' fast bowler Tom Cooper for six from the first ball he faced. The 36-year-old superstar hit two more and seven boundaries on his way to 73, his highest score so far in this edition of BBL.
Fantasy AnalysisThe Australian batsman is still recovering from a broken broken left little finger he received during the second Test against South Africa in early November. Marsh is set for exams in the coming days and Cricket Australia's doctors are pleased he will feature for his Big Bash League team, Perth Scorchers, in their clash against Sydney Sixers on December 27th. One person that may benefit from Marsh's injury is Nic Maddinson, who could be given one more shot at Test cricket despite single-digit scores in all three of his Test innings.
Fantasy AnalysisSteyn was injured in November and with a six-month timetable, will miss the IPL as well as the team's fixtures prior to the Protean's tour of England, which he hopes to be fully fit for. His return would be a boon to the attack, having taken 417 wickets in his Test career including a whopping 26 five-fors and five 10 wicket hauls.
Fantasy AnalysisRaval is stepping into the shoes of his “inspiration”, Martin Guptill, who finally lost the patience of NZ selectors for his inability to put up big runs. Raval has impressed in New Zealand's domestic competition, averaging 59.8 last season. A question mark remains over Raval's ability to handle spin, so visiting side Pakistan can be expected to test the left-hander when they arrive next week.
Fantasy AnalysisSri Lanka's opener amassed a large innings in terms of balls faced, scoring 88 from 203 deliveries as others fell around him. He was eventually dismissed in the 73rd over with the score on 198 when he was trapped LBW by Chris Mpofu.
Fantasy AnalysisMarsh had a score of 29 overnight, which looked small in contrast to the 73 of David Warner from a smaller amount of deliveries than what Marsh had faced. It was a strong platform however to start on for next days play and was something Marsh could capitalise on to make a score. The left-handed batsman looked increasingly comfortable at the crease on the second and when he fell for 63 it was in the middle of Australia's collapse as they lost seven wickets for only 45 runs.
Fantasy AnalysisTaking the extremely important wicket of in-form batsman David Warner for 97 in his previous overs, fortunes were looking up for Steyn and the South African side. However, the fast bowler was unable to complete his next over and left the field, not to be seen again for the rest of the day. It was later confirmed that Steyn had fractured his right shoulder and that he would miss the entire tour. His replacement is likely to be Morne Morkel if he can be cleared from his own injury problems or Kyle Abbott.
Fantasy AnalysisAfter opening with a half-century in the first innings and partnering with Kaushal Silva for 123 runs before the first wicket was taken, he then helped set the table in the second innings, hitting for his fourth Test century in 32 matches. With Sri Lanka up 411 going into the final day, Karunaratne's 166 run match should certainly help as they gun for a victory.
Fantasy AnalysisCapped 18 times at the Test level, the 33-year-old has suffered a litany of hamstring injuries, with this one threatening his once-safe spot in the Australian Test squad. He impressed in his only Test match of Australia's series against Sri Lanka, going for his fourth century in 32 innings and was one of the few bright spots during Australia's whitewashing. His injury may open up the door for Usman Khawaja and Joe Burns to return to the Test squad.
Fantasy AnalysisBetween Shamsi and Kyle Abbott, South Africa was able to make quick work of Australia as those two bowlers accounted for seven wickets in just 18 overs of work between the two, holding Australia to just 36.4 overs in total. Bowling in just his third ODI and his first of the series, the 26-year-old looks to be in strong form. Furthermore, he was named to the team's Test squad and looks comfortable as either a holding bowler or playing a larger role in the attack as a debutant.
Fantasy AnalysisThe former West Indian captain last made an appearance for the international side at the 2013 Champions Trophy against India, 13 years after his debut for the West Indies in 2000. Sarwan leaves the international side with 20 international centuries (15 in tests and five in ODI's), as well as 41 wickets across the three international formats.
Fantasy AnalysisA leading player for the Caribbean side in recent times, Russell's reasons for withdrawal from the upcoming games are unknown. However, it is speculated that the allrounder is set to face the Jamaican Anti-Doping Commission in the forthcoming days for allegedly missing tests. As a result, Kesrick Williams has been called into the squad as Russell's replacement.
Fantasy AnalysisRaval earned his promotion to the NZ Test squad that toured Africa with an impressive performance in the country's domestic first-class competition that produced a 55.71 average, but the Indian-born batsman hasn't been so fortunate this time. The 27-year-old left-hander will miss out on the upcoming Indian tour despite earning praise from NZ selectors. "Jeet Raval misses out on this tour, but we were really pleased with what we saw of him in Africa. He did everything asked of him and we'll continue to monitor him closely,” said Gavin Larsen.
Fantasy AnalysisChasing 195 in 18 overs was a big ask for the Tridents, and the victory for the top-of-the-table Tallawahs was confirmed thanks largely to the bowling performance of Steyn. Wickets included the Tridents' captain Kieron Pollard on 16 and fellow countryman David Wiese for a golden duck. The four-for now takes Steyn's tournament total to 12 as he leaves the CPL having been recalled by Cricket South Africa.
Fantasy AnalysisOut of commission since sustaining a torn right calf on Apr. 22 for the Supergiants in the IPL, Pietersen is expected to be healthy at some point in November, which coincides with the initial games of the Ram Slam slate. Last year, he recorded the second-most runs (401) in the tournament, finishing with an 80.20 average and 172.84 strike rate. The performances helped the Dolphins reach the final, but his side will be without David Miller and Kyle Abbott this time around, thereby hindering their chances. Nevertheless, Pietersen is expected to be available for the latter portion of the round-robin phase as well as the knockout stage (if applicable).
Fantasy AnalysisSteyn ended the tournament with a flourish, nabbing a pair of wickets in each of his last three matches. Overall, his eight dropped every 16.3 balls, which was accompanied by a 6.82 economy rate. When he returns to South Africa, he'll merely be upholding a contractual obligation at an annual awards ceremony.
Fantasy AnalysisSehwag leaves the game as one of India's greatest opening batsmen, playing in 104 Tests, 251 ODIs and 19 T20Is between 1999 and 2013. While he was key to Indian victories at the 2007 World T20 and the 2011 World Cup, his prowess in Test cricket (23 centuries, including two 300s) is of particular note, as he recorded an 82.23 strike rate in the long format. The 37-year-old will now turn his attention to the Masters Champions League, which a T20 tournament based in the UAE.
Fantasy AnalysisAbsent from July's tour of Zimbabwe due to a fractured finger on his left hand, Sharma has instead played in five List A games and one First-class match against Australia A and South Africa A squads. Emerging unscathed, the spinner will be among 30 players in consideration for the 72-day series versus the Proteas, which starts on Oct. 2 with a T20.
Fantasy AnalysisKarunaratne suffered a fractured little finger on his left hand at the midpoint of the World Cup, which required more than three months to achieve full health. However, he was picked for the trio of Tests in the current series, averaging 53.00 at a strike rate of 53.44 on the backs of one century and two 50s. His lack of selection for the five ODIs to come this month likely pushes back his next international fixture to the two T20Is to conclude the series.
Fantasy AnalysisShamsi locked up the meat of Barbados' order in the middle overs, including the scalps of Dwayne Smith, Jason Holder, and Jonathan Carter. The outing marked Shamsi's second consecutive four-for, with his 10 wickets cascading to the pitch every 10.2 balls. Furthermore, his four tidy overs Monday lowered his economy rate more than a run to 6.82 in his first CPL season.
Fantasy AnalysisSharma's absence leaves Indian captain Ajinkya Rahane with only two spinners, Harbhajan Singh and Axar Patel, to chose from for the three ODIs and two T20s of the tour. In the meantime, there's no telling when Sharma will be cleared for action, but the nature of his injury like equates to a lengthy recovery effort.
Fantasy AnalysisIrfan missed the first ODI on Tuesday, with two absences to follow Friday and Sunday, as a result of a stress fracture in his pelvis. He initially came down with the injury leading up to the World Cup quarterfinal versus Pakistan, but not before taking eight wickets in five games, which were accompanied by a 4.53 economy rate and 30.7 strike rate. His next chance to return arrives at the start of the upcoming tour of Sri Lanka on June 17, which includes three Tests, five ODIs, and two T20Is.
Fantasy AnalysisThe tour kicks off with the first of three ODIs on Apr. 17, but Khan won't make a possible appearance until a T20I on Apr. 24, with two Tests to follow starting on Apr. 28 and May 6. Any selection would mark his first since Jan. 11 due to a "traction injury of the nerve in the posterior right thigh," which kept him out of the World Cup. In nine T20I matches, he's toppled eight wickets for 29.50 while allowing 8.74 runs per over. However, his Test career is far more renowned, with 65 wickets taken for 28.83 and a 2.84 economy rate in 33 innings across 18 fixtures.
Fantasy AnalysisKhan missed the recent two-match ODI series against host New Zealand due to a "traction injury of the nerve in the posterior right thigh" suffered while training for the Cup. Instead, he was in the middle of a rigorous rehab program at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore, Pakistan, which didn't bring about the intended results. Pakistan will thus be without its premier pace bowler, hindering its chances of advancement through the knockout stages, assuming the Misbah-ul-Haq-helmed squad emerges from Group B.