Mark Nicholas
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Former Hampshire batsman; host of Channel Nine's cricket coverage
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England v India, 5th Investec Test, The Oval, 1st day

Cook on right side of Sliding Doors

Aug 15, 2014: England appear to be cruising towards a 3-1 series victory - but things could have been very different were it not for three coin tosses and a dropped catch

Mark Nicholas at The Oval

England v India, 4th Investec Test, Old Trafford, 3rd day

Young England growing up fast

Aug 9, 2014: The turnaround in England's fortunes since defeat at Lord's has been remarkable and testament to the faith Alastair Cook has shown in several new players

Mark Nicholas at Old Trafford

England v India, 4th Investec Test, Old Trafford, 1st day

Anderson bullies in the right way

Aug 7, 2014: Bowlers like to bully. Theirs is a job of blood and sweat and when the odds turn in their favour, watch out

Mark Nicholas at Old Trafford

Jacques Kallis retires

Kallis a standard-bearer for a nation

Jul 30, 2014: He made South Africans proud and he made the rest of the world stand up and take notice. He played at the highest level for 18 years and was the beating heart of many fine teams

Mark Nicholas

England v India, 3rd Investec Test, Ageas Bowl, 2nd day

Gary Ballance: England's undercover agent

Jul 28, 2014: England's Zimbabwe-born No. 3 flew under the radar almost until his debut - but the world is watching now

Mark Nicholas at the Ageas Bowl

England v India, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's 5th day

England seem to have forgotten about personality

Jul 21, 2014: They have to see a glass that is half-full, and play the game as if it is just that, a game; and an opportunity

Mark Nicholas at Lord's

England v India, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's, 4th day

Another battle, another defeat on Planet Al

Jul 20, 2014: Alastair Cook has got used to feeling of the axe hanging over him. Only his team-mates can save England now

Mark Nicholas at Lord's

England v India, 2nd Investec Test, Lord's 3rd day

For goodness sake, pitch it up

Jul 19, 2014: Uniform pitches are a problem all over the world. They all play much the same. It is crucial that the indigenous qualities of surfaces in their various climates and conditions are allowed to flourish

Mark Nicholas at Lord's

England v India, 1st Investec Test, Trent Bridge, 5th day

Signs a corner has been turned by England

Jul 13, 2014: The hosts appeared to play with a different attitude at Trent Bridge. No longer was there a sense that the game owed them. They just got on with it and Alastair Cook played the match with a smile on his face

Mark Nicholas at Trent Bridge

England v India, 1st Investec Test, Trent Bridge, 3rd day

Ishant's Mr Mistoffelees spell

Jul 11, 2014: Mark Waugh often said there was no such thing as a flat pitch in Test cricket and that the best bowlers would find a way. On the third day at Trent Bridge, Ishant Sharma found that way, adapting like England had not managed

Mark Nicholas

The Frost and Blank English cricket show

Jul 4, 2014: Richards, Hadlee, Chappell, Tendulkar and Lara have all featured in charity matches organised by a legendary British broadcaster and a banker at a private ground in Oxfordshire

Mark Nicholas

England v Sri Lanka, 2nd Investec Test, Headingley, 5th day

The tale of two balls, one winner and a piece of history

Jun 24, 2014: With two balls remaining at Lord's, Nuwan Pradeep was saved by an inside edge (and the DRS). A little over a week later, with two balls remaining at Leeds, James Anderson fended a bouncer to decide the series

Mark Nicholas

England v Sri Lanka, 2nd Investec Test, Headingley, 4th day

Mathews record invites comparisons with The Don

Jun 23, 2014: One of the great Test innings by Angelo Mathews, typical of his outstanding record as captain, has put Sri Lanka on the brink of a famous win

Mark Nicholas at Headingley

Boycott remains a priceless voice

Jun 21, 2014: Cricket is still the fire in Geoff Boycott's belly. His passion is undimmed and each moment of each day is watched, analysed and forensically thought through before the burst of opinion is unleashed

Mark Nicholas

England's reticent champion

Jun 20, 2014: To be playing a 100th Test at the age of 32 is a walloping achievement. Better still, the very best of "Belly" may be yet to come

Mark Nicholas

England v Sri Lanka, 1st Investec Test, Lord's, 5th day

Sangakkara a maestro in convoluted drama

Jun 16, 2014: In a match to highlight all that is great about Test cricket Kumar Sangakarra showed his class and without him Sri Lanka were done for

Mark Nicholas at Lord's

England v Sri Lanka, 1st Investec Test, Lord's, 2nd day

Moeen, Jordan make bright beginnings

Jun 13, 2014: Much was new about England at Lord's - from personnel, to batting order, to slip catchers - but not everything is clear about their thinking

Mark Nicholas at Lord's

Fifty-over cricket shouldn't become an afterthought

Jun 5, 2014: One-day internationals are the filling in cricket's sandwich, but the game's rulers are giving it a dull taste

Mark Nicholas

Players must police their game

May 23, 2014: National boards need to create an environment where open discussion about dodgy behaviour and whistle-blowing is encouraged

Mark Nicholas

Cook must bring the joy back

May 8, 2014: As England make a fresh start under a new regime, it's up to the captain to find a way to make his players cherish the national cap once again

Mark Nicholas
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Accommodating the IPL

How do hotels cater to the players' needs and wants over a two-month season? Vishal Dikshit finds out

Who are the IPL's fans?

Srinath Sripath spends the evening of the tournament final in a Mumbai pub and comes away enlightened

The heart-stoppers

Which are the most thrilling T20 internationals ever played? Anantha Narayanan looks at the stats
The Cricket Monthly, May issue

    I won't be your hat-trick victim

Ask Steven: What became of the only two bowlers to have taken 16 wickets on Test debut?

The hinterland of 40

Jon Hotten: At Lord's we saw three in-between scores of the sort that are as likely to annoy the selectors as excite them

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AB de Villiers misses out on ESPNcricinfo's all-time IPL XI

Chris Gayle, Dwayne Bravo, Sunil Narine and Lasith Malinga make up the overseas roster, while MS Dhoni captains the side

Smith, Dhoni central to Pune's turnaround

There were rumours about Rising Pune being a bickering and uninterested unit because of off-field decisions, but amid the noise, the think-tank addressed the underlying issue of how to win games

Dhoni destroys and delights Mumbai

MS Dhoni was far from his best leading into and in this game. But when the ball was put in his half, that hardly mattered - much to the delight of even staunch Mumbai Indians fans

Washington Sundar thinks his way to success

For someone so young, with no big variations, the Pune offspinner has done remarkably well thanks to his clarity of thought

A history of the Champions Trophy in seven matches

A look at some of the games that summed up the themes the tournament has come to embody over the years

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