India opener Shikhar Dhawan insists that there is healthy competition in the team due to the emergence of exciting young players like Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill.Dhawan was addressing the media in Mount Maunganui on the eve of the second ODI between India and New Zealand at the Bay Oval stadium on Friday.Dhawan said competition is high in the 15-member squad as Indian cricketers especially as ‘youngsters’ grow up fast and create a lot of competition in the team.”Take the case of Prithvi Shaw, the way he came into the Test team and scored a century and then 70 runs. Everyone has to be on their toes. Our team has been performing very well. Our bench strength is also very strong,” Dhawan said at the press conference.The Delhi batsman also spoke about his latest record of becoming the joint-fourth fastest batsman to reach 5,000 runs in ODI cricket.Dhawan achieved the feat during the sixth over of India’s 158-run chase against New Zealand in the first of the ongoing five-match ODI series at the McLean Park in Napier.Dhawan surpassed the likes of Sourav Ganguly and Graeme Smith and matched Brian Lara to become the joint-fastest left-handed batsman to reach the milestone.”This milestone is part of the journey. I am happy to achieve it and will be looking forward to scoring more runs for my team and do well consistently. Once you get the experience, you take the things with ease and you know what to do and what not to do.advertisement”I back my instinct and know my technique suits. It is a mental adjustment… once I am at the pitch I create a plan in that particular moment,” the 33-year-old said on Friday.During the first ODI, Dhawan was involved in a 91-run second-wicket partnership with captain Virat Kohli which virtually ended the contest as India raced to victory in the 35th over.When asked about it, Dhawan said he likes to rotate the strike and put pressure on the bowlers whenever he gets the chance to bat alongside Kohli, the No.1 ODI batsman in the world.”We (Virat Kohli and I) rotate the strike very well, that is one thing that keeps the pressure off. If one hits the boundary, it boosts the other,” he said.”We always plan that our top order scores more and stays longer at the pitch. But it also depends on the target, match to match, score to score and a little bit on the mood. If the target is 300 or plus, we cannot play slow. In the first 10 overs as an opener we have to put up scores quickly and create momentum,” Dhawan said.India, with a 1-0 lead, will next meet New Zealand in the second ODI of the five-match series at Mount Maunganui on January 26.Also Read | Team India receives traditional Maori welcome in Mount Maunganui ahead of 2nd ODI vs NZAlso Read | Hardik Pandya to join Team India in New Zealand, KL Rahul to play for India A
The Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Honourable Olivia Grange, has announced that Jamaica will establish a National Anti-Doping Compliance Committee as part of measures to enhance the national programme to keep sports clean.The Committee will ensure that Jamaica conforms to the World Anti-Doping Agency’s code and UNESCO’s International Convention against Doping in Sport.“We want to ensure that our athletes are playing clean and fair,” said Minister Grange who made the announcement at a symposium organised by the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission, an agency of the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport at the Jamaica Conference Centre on Thursday (January 24).According to the Minister, the establishment of the Committee will among other things “improve information sharing, promote planning, design and delivery of joint initiatives and enhance the anti-doping programme’s impact and effectiveness.”She said that the Committee will also ensure a more comprehensive response to the national compliance report to be submitted to UNESCO.“I am confident that Jamaica will be ranked compliant, however, in order for Jamaica to be successful, there has to be the collaborative effort of all entities and stakeholders in the fight against doping in sport,” Minister Grange said.Under the International Convention against Doping in Sport Jamaica has a responsibility to report bi-annually on its efforts for a doping free environment in the country.The National Anti-Doping Compliance Committee will include representatives from the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the private sector, tertiary institutions, law enforcement and health.