Rohit Sharma scored 82 runs and helped India reach 227-8 in 63.2 overs at stumps on day three of the second Test against New Zealand in Kolkata.The hosts lead by 339 runs, with Wriddhiman Saha on 39 and Bhuvneshwar Kumar on eight at the crease.Sharma played an assured knock on a pitch with variable bounce, negotiating both pace and spin with ease. He faced 132 balls and hit nine fours and two well-timed sixes. He reached his sixth Test 50 off 89 deliveries.Sharma’s batting helped the hosts recover from a precarious situation and with a sizeable lead, they are now once again in command of this Test with two days remaining.”There was something in the surface throughout the day. It’s not a typical Kolkata wicket,” said Sharma, who has been under fire for a string of low scores. “I am not under any pressure. I scored runs in the first Test (in Kanpur), too.”With Saha, Sharma put on 103 runs for the seventh wicket, the fourth time in the last five Tests that India have had a century partnership for this pairing. In doing so, the duo pushed the score past the 200-mark and took the overall lead to 300 to put the hosts in a comfortable position.Sharma, who scored a maiden Test 100 on debut at Eden Gardens against West Indies in 2013, was approaching his second ton when he was caught behind off Mitchell Santner (3-51).The left-arm spinner also accounted for Ravindra Jadeja (6), caught off a skier. Play was halted early due to bad light.With the variable bounce in the pitch, the match already looks beyond the visitors’ reach. The highest fourth-innings’ target chased successfully here is 117 by India against South Africa in 2004.
(AP Photo/Ralph Freso) NFL Power Rankings: Making the case for the Eagles’ title hopes with Nick Foles Top Stories Cardinals rank: #20 (▲2)Linebacker Josh Bynes has been a fun story for the Cardinals. He had an unremarkable first six seasons with the Lions and Ravens as an undrafted player, but has found a home in Arizona. Coach Bruce Arians raved about him last week, and he made a huge interception in a win on Sunday.USA Today Power Rankings – Week 15Cardinals rank: #19 (▲4)Maybe they should apply for membership in the AFC South. They beat the Titans, Jags and Colts this year but are just 3-6 against NFC competition. The Arizona Cardinals haven’t made many friends in the AFC South this season.Their tour of the division ended with a 12-7 win over the Tennessee Titans Sunday. It was Arizona’s third win in four games against AFC South foes — and twice in the last three weeks, they knocked off the team atop the division.The win translated to a small bump for the Cardinals in this week’s battery of rankings.Here’s a look at where Arizona lands in NFL Power Rankings from around the country. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact NFL Power Rankings: Where Does Every Team Stand Heading into Week 15?Cardinals rank: #20 (▲4)The Arizona Cardinals aren’t a playoff team, but they can’t be taken lightly.Quarterback Blaine Gabbert continues to make a few big plays each week, and Kerwynn Williams has boosted the running game. Even though the defense has been inconsistent throughout the year, it is capable of creating chaos. We saw that against the Tennessee Titans.Arizona’s defense made things difficult for Tennessee’s run game, and it forced some huge turnovers. One came in the red area, and one came late to help put the game away.While injuries have impacted Arizona’s season, the Cardinals are an inconsistent, below-average team as a whole. This is why they’re sitting at 6-7. Still, Arizona can be a pain in the ass down the stretch. Arizona Sports NFL Power Rankings Week 15: Steelers take over the top spotCardinals rank: #20 (▲3) Gabbert won another start vs. Titans, missed some receivers but zero turnovers. — Mike JureckiWeek 15 NFL Power Rankings: Biggest breakthroughs — including a new No. 1Cardinals rank: #20 (▲3) It might be a stretch to call Chandler Jones a breakthrough considering he has had three other 10-sack seasons. But Jones already has a career-high 14.0 sacks and leads the NFL, something no Cardinal has done across an entire season.NFL Power Rankings, Week 15: Pittsburgh Steelers hit No. 1 spotCardinals rank: #22 (▲1)The Cardinals will be playing for .500 this Sunday in Washington. Isn’t that shocking? Doesn’t it feel like Arizona has suffered through a terrible season? Perhaps even more surprising is that the Cardinals own a better record than their opponent, the banged-up Redskins. Maybe the loss of David Johnson in Week 1 and the Cardinals’ other early struggles (including QB Carson Palmer’s broken arm) caused us to write off Bruce Arians’ team. Look, Arizona isn’t going anywhere — as in, to the playoffs. The actual state isn’t moving, either. Let’s hope Arians, Larry Fitzgerald and a couple of other veterans also stay put beyond 2017. Who wouldn’t like to see the venerable head coach, Hall of Fame wide receiver and veteran quarterback give it one more try? I heard Arians on the radio this week gushing over the players on injured reserve. Didn’t sound like a man ready to hang up the beret. NFL Power Rankings Poll: The Top of the League Falls in Week 14Cardinals rank: #22 (▲1)No comment.NFL Power Rankings: Steelers on top for now, but still must take Patriots downCardinals rank: #21 (▲2) The defense has done some really good things the past month. That has to give them hope for next season. Week 14 power rankingsCardinals rank: #22 (▲2)They’d be crazy to bring back Blaine Gabbert.Week 15 NFL Power Rankings: Steelers, Patriots set up epic 1-2 battleCardinals rank: #20 (▲4)The Cardinals have the distinction of being the only sub-.500 team alive in the top-heavy NFC. It’s pretty impressive that Bruce Arians’ team can sniff 8-8 without David Johnson and Carson Palmer. – / 20 Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires 0 Comments Share