Sport

Warwickshire have defended their decision to re-brand the county as the Birmingham Bears for next season’s Twenty20 competition, itself spruced up and re-named the NatWest Twenty20 Blast.

Ravi Bopara in action against Australia

Ravi Bopara: 'I'm batting as well as I ever have – those changes have worked'

Bopara stakes his claim for South Africa series as Swann shows passion for the one-day game

Andrew Strauss salutes the crowd after his dismissal for 45 yesterday

England will defend one-point lead in ICC Test rankings against South Africa

England will defend a one-point lead over South Africa at the top of the International Cricket Council's world Test rankings in this summer's three-match series between the two teams, it was officially confirmed today.

Tino Best celebrates becoming the first number 11 batsman to hit a half-century against England in over 100 years

Draw looms for West Indies despite Tino Best's record breaking heroics

Tino Best and Denesh Ramdin's last-wicket heroics stunned England at Edgbaston, but were still powerless to permanently revive the rain-ravaged third Investec Test.

Spring in his step: Graham Onions was in the wickets on his Test return

Bowlers battle each other while battering Windies

Stuart Broad looked cross when he learned that he was to be rested, along with James Anderson. When Andrew Strauss won the toss and said England would bowl, the game was turned into an entertaining trial between three pace bowlers determined to make a case for a role against South Africa next month.

Kevin Pietersen celebrated his century against Pakistan in Dubai in February but England must now do without him in ODIs

England 'better for having Kevin Pietersen out' claims Nick Knight

Nick Knight has risked a further deterioration in his already frosty relationship with Kevin Pietersen, by claiming England are likely to be better off without the latter in 50-over cricket.

A lone St George's flag as heavy rain prevents any play on day one

Rain rescues Broad but ECB left to count the cost

Extra day of rest means Notts all-rounder likely to play, while it's full refunds for the Edgbaston crowd

Kevin Pietersen has retired from England's limited-overs sides

Ian Bell: Unlike KP, I am desperate to get into the ODI team

We all respect Kevin Pietersen's decision to retire from one-day internationals and I understand that a player might want to prioritise. But it's not a call I feel I'm close to making.

Kevin Pietersen has retired from England's limited-overs sides

Ian Bell: Unlike KP, I am desperate to get back in ODI team

View From the Middle: In Tests, there is nowhere to hide. Somehow, Twenty20 cricket isn't the same

A dogged 66 from Durham's Ben Stokes underlined his credentials

County Championship round-up: Stokes fuels chase to replace Bairstow

Cool customer though Jonny Bairstow is, he may just have felt the icy blast of other batsmen's runs down his neck as he prepares for the Third Test. Ben Stokes, the extremely likely lad from Durham, made 66 yesterday for the improbable table-proppers against the table-toppers, Warwickshire.

James Anderson's absence spurs West Indies

West Indies' top order could do with a break as the tourists try to avoid a whitewash in the Investec Test series against England - and James Anderson's absence from the final match may have given them one.

Stephen Brenkley: Blame schedule for policy where no one wins

True to their declared policy, England yesterday rotated a fast bowler. With the team already 2-0 up in the series of three Tests against West Indies, Jimmy Anderson had to turn on his heel and away from the England dressing room.

Yorkshire’s Andrew Gale hits out during the Pro40 fixture against Kent at Headingley yesterday

Pro-40 Round-up: Netherlands up and running as Stephanus Myburgh leads from the front

The Netherlands posted an impressive total of 239 for 6 in their first Clydesdale Bank Pro40 fixture of the season, against Gloucestershire yesterday. After losing the toss and being put in at Bristol, the Dutch reached their total thanks to Stephanus Myburgh's impressive 77, which featured 11 fours and two sixes, and Cameron Borgas's 38. Ed Young, who picked up 2 for 31, was the pick of Gloucestershire's bowlers.

Australia's Michael Clarke (right) is hugged by team-mate Nathan Lyon after taking the wicket of tailender Ravi Rampaul for 11

Tail wags but Clarke takes five to wrap up series win for Australia

Australia 328 & 259 West Indies 218 & 294 (Australia win by 75 runs)

Surrey fall apart to hand Notts the early ascendancy

Nottinghamshire established themselves as the early leaders in the County Championship, completing a second victory in as many matches as both Surrey and Somerset fell short in their attempts to do likewise.

Fiery Adams: The New Zealander kept himself warm with 3 for 19

County Championship round-up: Notts shrug off the April cold to put the heat on Durham

They may be hardy folk in the north-east, but it was so cold at Chester-le-Street that six members of the Durham side fielded in woolly hats in an effort to fend off hypothermia as Nottinghamshire built a winning position.

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