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In Case You Missed It: Pakistan's series win, IPL exits, and Bangladesh's Test quest

Our best content from the week gone by

Deepti Unni
The Pakistan players celebrate with the series trophy, Zimbabwe vs Pakistan, 3rd T20I, Harare, April 25, 2021

Pakistan won the T20I series against Zimbabwe 2-1  •  AFP/Getty Images

Can Zimbabwe repeat their 2013 Test victory against Pakistan? It's what they will be attempting this week in Harare. Also looking for a win at home are Sri Lanka, after their first Test against Bangladesh ended in an entertaining stalemate. The IPL caravan has moved to Delhi and Ahmedabad, but the Australian government's suspension of flights from India prompted a few players to exit the tournament and head home for fear of being stranded. Here's your round-up of the week's news and views.
Hasan Ali four-for, Mohammad Rizwan 91* lead Pakistan to series win
Zimbabwe were chasing a first-ever series victory against Pakistan in T20Is, and they did have their moments in the decider, but a middle-overs' slowdown dashed their hopes. Now they are hoping for better luck in the Test series, armed as they are with a resurgent team, and one of the best fast bowlers Zimbabwe has produced in a long time, Blessing Muzarabani.
Heath Streak accepts ICC ban but says he didn't fix matches
The former Zimbabwe captain and coach who received an eight-year ban from the ICC may face a separate investigation by his country's prosecuting authority.
Australian players, umpire Nitin Menon return home from the IPL
Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson left the IPL to return home as the Australian government announced the suspension of flights from India till May 15. The players were concerned about being stranded in India. Umpire Nitin Menon also left for Indore after his parents tested positive for Covid this week.
CSA no longer under threat of defunding and derecognition
The dissolution of Cricket South Africa was once again put on hold as an agreement was reached on adopting a new memorandum of incorporation and the structure put forward by sports minister Nathi Mthethwa.
Bangladesh's new, positive outlook bodes well for their Test future
The tourists first Test against Sri Lanka ended in a high-scoring draw but the unusual but positive decisions they made, like fielding five specialist bowlers and opting to bat first, might signal a different approach to Tests by Bangladesh, says Mohammad Isam. Andrew Fidel Fernando too can only find positives in the competence, if not excellence, of Sri Lanka's openers in recent Tests.
Can the IPL wield its power to aid a country in crisis?
As the pandemic wreaks havoc in India, the IPL marches on. That is not necessarily a bad thing, but can the BCCI make it count for more, asks Jayaditya Gupta. Ian Chappell sees many challenges ahead for cricket administrators as a packed schedule collides with a still-raging pandemic, and says this year will test them sorely.
Why is it easier and more rewarding to follow franchise cricket than the international game?
Ahmer Naqvi says leagues have the advantage because the narratives that nurture fandom can develop more easily around them.
At the IPL
Moeen Ali's excellence and Jos Buttler's continued struggle
A mixed bag for England players this week at the IPL in Andrew Miller's report card, while the Australians have had a rough few days,notes Andrew McGlashan.
Six of AB de Villiers' best IPL innings
de Villiers, the superhero we deserve, hit the 5000-run milestone in the IPL last week and, to celebrate, Nagraj Gollapudi flipped through his best innings in the tournament. Which one was your favourite?
The greatest IPL performances, No. 4: Rashid Khan's 3 for 19 and 34 not out vs the Kolkata Knight Riders
How many different ways can a player have an impact on a match? Here's an example for you, fourth on our staffers' list of the most memorable performances from the previous 13 editions of the IPL.
Tamim Iqbal: 'When I am scoring runs, I am very serious about my diet'
The Bangladesh opener - who has been among the runs recently, so presumably also on a diet - talks about learning to eat right, the best cook in the Bangladesh team, and where to find great Peking duck in London in this month's Crunch Time.
'I really did start hating cricket' - Dom Bess bounces back after struggles in India
The offspinner has had a difficult winter away with England, struggling for consistency and being dropped after helping the team to victory in Chennai in February, but he's now found form with Yorkshire.
Chris Jordan: 'Watching de Villiers and Kohli - it was almost like a movie'
The England bowler took 4 for 11 in that IPL game, but it's the blockbuster double act he watched live from the dressing room that's seared into memory.

Deepti Unni is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo