Wednesday, June 30, 2010

No PD data from Opticians

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The Blade Shop

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Items purchased from TheBladeShop may be returned within 30 days of receipt. Items must be in new condition and in original packaging. Please be aware that item packaging must be in new condition as well. Used items can not be returned. Please obtain a Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) number before shipping your item back. Returns without a valid RMA number will be subject to a 30% restocking fee, no exceptions.The Blade Shop will gladly reimburse shipping on defective items, however, shipping charges will not be reimbursed for buyer's remorse.The Blade Shop is a one stop shop for all of your favorite knife brands including Benchmade, Cold Steel, Kershaw, Microtech, Sog and Spyderco. Spyderco introduced many features that are now common on folding Spyderco knives, including the pocket clip, serrations, and the opening hole. Spyderco has collaborated with 30 custom knife makers, athletes, and self-defense instructors for designs and innovated the usage of 20 different blade materials.So what you people waiting for ? Log on to the website to get the maximum out of it !!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Dravid Says that Indians can tackle Mendis

Ajantha Mendis wrecked havoc when India toured Sri Lanka in 2008 but senior batsman Rahul Dravid hoped this time around he and his colleagues are better equipped to tackle the 'mystery' spinner in the forthcoming Test series beginning in Galle next month.

Mendis demolished the famed Indian batting line up in his debut series two years back by capturing 26 wickets to help Sri Lanka beat India 2-1 in the three-Test encounter.

But Dravid said since then the Indians have mastered the mystery spinner and hoped for a better showing from his teammates in the forthcoming series.

"He (Mendis) is still a good bowler. He was completely new to us when we toured Sri Lanka last time (in 2008). He got the measure our team last time, there is no doubt about it. He played a major role in the series. But hopefully, we have learnt our lesson," the former captain told reporters at the launch of the 2010 Limca Book of Records.

"I think we played him pretty well when he came to India. We learnt how to tackle him. Having said that international bowlers keep on improving, international bowlers come up with new tricks everytime. But hopefully we will have the answers whatever Mendis throws at us this time," Dravid said.

Dravid also predicted a challenging three-match series against the islanders which begins with the first Test in Galle on July 18.

"Sri Lanka is a very formidable team and they play tough cricket at home. In the last two times we travelled there, we won a Test match but did not win the series. It is a positive sign to win a Test there but it is now important for us to keep that performance going right throughout the upcoming series," he said.

"It is going to be a challenge but we have got a good team. We have got bowlers who are capable of taking 20 wickets, which is important to win a Test. If we can put runs on the board, hopefully we will have a good series," the right-hand batsman added.

Asked about his own preparation for the series, Dravid said, "I would not need to make any particular adjustments in my batting for the series. I have been training and preparing for the last six weeks keeping in mind the series.

"I got a good gap after IPL and it has given me time to be with my family and do a bit of physical training. It was a good break for me but now it's time to get back to cricket."

He, however, agreed that it would be a challenge for him to return to Test cricket after such a long gap.

"Sometimes, it is little bit of challenge to return to Test cricket after a long break but there is preparation time in Sri Lanka. I am looking forward to some match practice before the series," Dravid said.

Dravid also said that Yuvraj Singh, who makes a return to the national team, will answer his detractors in the series. "Yuvraj would be keen to do well and prove a point. I think we will see the best of him in the series," Dravid said.

The former skipper disagreed with the notion that his shoes would be difficult to fill in once he quits international cricket.

"Without naming anyone, I would like to say that there are plenty of players ready to take my place. Abundance of young talent is coming through," Dravid said.

Meanwhile, Dravid congratulated ace shuttler Saina Nehwal, who won three consecutive international titles in a span of three weeks to jump to the third position in the world rankings.

"It is phenomenal achievement by Saina. She is a great inspiration for a lot of Indians. It is incredible to win three competitions in three weeks in a sport like badminton which is physically very tiring. She has set benchmark for a lot of youngsters," he said.

Dravid had also some thought regarding the poor standard of refereeing in the ongoing football World Cup in South Africa and said it is high time that FIFA take the help of technology to make the game better.

"It is a world class event and such a big event. When so much riding is on each of these games, I think there is room for technology. The world body (FIFA) should think about it," Dravid, a die-hard Brazil fan, said.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Aussies to Play for Pride

Australia captain Ricky Ponting fell on the crutch used by many a beaten England captain when he urged his team to play for "pride" as the one-day series against their old rivals was lost.

The world champions top-order, for the third time in a row, failed to fire as Australia were bowled out for a mere 212 in the third one-day international at Old Trafford on Sunday.

An attack led by left-arm quick Doug Bollinger and featuring recalled fast bowler Shaun Tait, who between them shared six wickets, then reduced England, cruising at 185 for three, to 203 for nine.

But Tim Bresnan`s 14 not out saw England to a one-wicket win with five balls to spare and gave the hosts an unsurpassable 3-0 lead in the five match campaign as Australia suffered their first one-day series and tournament loss in eight contests.

"What we have to do now is show a bit of pride in our performances in the last two games and try and salvage whatever we can," Ponting told reporters ahead of Wednesday`s match at the Oval.
"It`s a bit of the same old, same old from the first two games, we just didn`t get enough runs again," the star batsman, stumped for just three in four wickets for England off-spinner Graeme Swann, the man-of-the-match, said.

Openers Shane Watson (61) and Tim Paine (44) got Australia off a fine start before the innings fell away and a blunt Ponting added: "Nought for 75 and all out 212 is not good enough - you`re not going to win many games doing that.

"If there`s a positive to be taken out of the first three games, it`s that we`ve stuck to out task pretty well with the ball."

While the bowling attack may be depleted, Australia`s top order, with the exception of wicketkeeper Brad Haddin, is at full strength and Paine, the gloveman`s deputy, was the second top-scorer yesterday.

"We`ve played five games on tour now, so you`d like to think that we`d be making runs on a more consistent basis than we are," Ponting said.

"You`ve got to give England some credit for the way they`ve bowled through the series so far. They`ve executed really well.

"Their spinners today did a terrific job on a wicket that suited the slower bowlers. I thought (Michael) Yardy and Swann were both very good for them. That built pressure on our batters and we got out."

One consolation for Australia was the form of Tait, playing his first one-day international since February last year.

The 27-year-old quit first-class and Test cricket to protect a suspect shoulder injury not helped by his slingshot bowling action and so concentrate on Twenty20, where he is limited to four overs an innings, and plays in the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) for the Rajasthan Royals.

But with only his fourth ball he bowled Craig Kieswetter for nought with a ferocious 85mph yorker that uprooted the opener`s middle stump.

Ponting, sensibly, used Tait in short spells and was so nearly rewarded with a stunning victory.

"That was pretty much how we used him in the (2007) World Cup as well," Ponting recalled.

"A couple of overs with the new ball, bring him back in the middle or bring him back to new batters, because he`s so dangerous for new batters when they first come to the crease.

"He`s only been playing Twenty20 cricket for a long time, so I was mindful of not bowling him in too many overs in one spell."

Ponting added: "Having someone like that, who`s got that firepower and that bit of unpredictability in your team, is always nice to have.

"It tends to lift the rest of the group as well. It`s no fluke that we had a bit more energy in the field.
"I thought that with the exception of a couple of wides, everything else was very, very good. It was a welcome return for Shaun."

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Lampard wants to be there till next World Cup

Frank Lampard wants to carry on playing for England despite their 2010 FIFA World Cup exit at the hands of Germany.

Lampard will be 36 by the time of the next World Cup in Brazil and the likes of Steven Gerrard, John Terry and Emile Heskey are already over 30.

But the Chelsea midfielder, denied a goal when his shot had clearly crossed the line, has no intention of quitting international football.

He said: "I want to carry on with England. I think there will be a lot of talking, not just about me.

"It's important players go away and don't listen to it and concentrate on our jobs now.

"The talk is great for the people who are involved in that sort of thing but it doesn't actually make any difference.

"We'll try and carry on, that's what we have to do.

"Only one team wins the World Cup and the rest go home at some stage and don't win it so the talking is by the by.

"We'll have to come back and try and perform."

But when asked if there should be major changes, Lampard said: "You know what, I don't really want to talk about it at the moment.

"We will worry about that when we start again."

Lampard has suffered his fair share of setbacks at international level and admits England's last 16 reversal is on a par with any of them.

He said: "There is bitter disappointment. It's right up there with other disappointments.

"You are at a World Cup and we felt we could have got a bit of momentum after the Slovenia game."

Friday, June 25, 2010


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Team India Win's Asia Cup After 15 Years

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni hailed victory over Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup final at Dambulla as an "ideal reflection" of his side's efforts in the tournament.

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni hailed victory over Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup final at Dambulla as an "ideal reflection" of his side's efforts in the tournament.

India's bowlers capitalised on an impressive batting performance - that saw them post a total of 268 for six - to record an emphatic 81-run win and secure the nation's first Asia Cup trophy in 15 years.

"Its an ideal reflection," Dhoni said. "The guys were putting in a lot of effort, not only in terms of fitness but skills as well and its good that we've won the Asia Cup after a long time. I'm really happy with the performance over here.

"I think we got the start that was needed. The batsmen got the start, but couldn't really convert that into big innings, but still we were happy to get 268."

And their batting was just a prelude to a scintillating show in the field, with the Indian pacemen Praveen Kumar, Ashish Nehra and Zaheer Khan shredding the Sri Lankan top order within the first 16 overs as they eventually fell to 187 all out.

"I know my bowlers very well," Dhoni added. "The fast bowlers really bowled well. I knew if we could get a few early wickets then we could put pressure on the Sri Lankan batting.

"We wanted to get (Tillakaratne) Dilshan out early because even if he stays for two or three overs he can just take 30-40 runs off you, so it was really good that we got him in the first over. The kind of bowling shown by Zaheer and Ashish was one of the best spells I have seen in these conditions."

Despite a disappointing loss in the dead-rubber tie two days ago against Sri Lanka, Dhoni insisted the final was all that mattered to his side.

He said: "It is a big game, and whatever you have done to get to the final, it doesn't make a difference anymore. Because if you don't win that final you're always talked about as the team that did not really do well, so it was an important win for us."

Sri Lankan skipper Kumar Sangakkara admitted the difference lay in kind of openings both sides had to their respective innings.

He said: "The difference was in the first 15 overs, the way we bowled and the way they did, and also the helpful conditions. I think losing four wickets in the top order was not a great way to start."

The Sri Lankan keeper also underlined the lack of aggression during their run chase, saying : "I think 269 was probably a chaseable total. I think a bit more application and being a bit more tight in our batting and having a little more of an attacking mindset would have seen us through."

He added: "The Indian bowlers hit the areas pretty well with some good lines and lengths and they let the ball do the rest. We weren't really up to the mark from the start and unfortunately succumbed."

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Indian Team Raises to No.2 and Dhoni retains No.1 Spot

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Monday regained the number-one batting position while his team returned to the second spot in the ICC ODI Championship after back-to-back victories in the ongoing Asia Cup in Sri Lanka.

Dhoni, who had started the tournament in third place trailing number-one ranked Michael Hussey of Australia by eight ratings points, scored 38 not out against Bangladesh and 56 against Pakistan.

These match-winning efforts, combined with Hussey's batting failure with the bat against Ireland in Dublin last week, has helped the India captain to jump two places to regain top spot while the Australian left-hander has been pushed down two places to third.

India's successive victories in the Asia Cup also ensured that it returns to number-two position in the ICC ODI Championship.

With India to face Sri Lanka in its last group stage match tomorrow before meeting again in the final on Thursday, Dhoni's side can afford to lose one match without conceding its second place.

However, if India loses both those matches, it will drop to 118 ratings points which will give South Africa possession of number-two spot. Sri Lanka, in that scenario, would rise to 111 ratings points.

Meanwhile, Sri Lanka's Tillakaratne Dilshan leapfrogged India's iconic batsman Sachin Tendulkar into fourth spot while India opener Gautam Gambhir has rocketed seven places to 17th spot after scores of 82 and 83.

In the ICC Player Rankings for ODI bowlers, Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal has lifted four places to 14th spot while India's pace and spin combination of Praveen Kumar and Ravindra Jadeja have also made upward movements.

Praveen has jumped seven places to occupy 20th position while Jadeja has vaulted 12 places to sit in 21st position.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Sachin Tendulkar to become Air Force Group Captain

Not really new to awards and honours, Sachin Tendulkar will be conferred Indian Air Force's honorary rank of Group Captain and the star cricketer said he is proud to be associated with the "dynamic" IAF.

"Under the provision of grant of honorary rank by Armed Forces to eminent personalities acknowledging their contribution towards the nation, the President and the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of India is pleased to confer Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar the honorary rank of Group Captain of the Indian Air Force," the IAF said in a statement.

"In recognition of Sachin's glorious achievements as a cricketer and sports icon par excellence, IAF had mooted a proposal to confer the honorary rank of Group Captain.

Also Read: Air Force on Sachin

"Besides the recognition, his association with the IAF will motivate the younger generation to join the Air Force to serve the country," the statement added.

Elated with the honour, Tendulkar said he was proud to be part of IAF family.

"It is indeed a great honour that I have been considered for honorary Group Captain in the IAF. As an Indian I am proud to be associated with the dynamic force and I shall do my very best to be brand ambassador for the force," Tendulkar said in a statement from London.

"Modalities for the event are being worked out. I'm looking forward to familiarising myself with the IAF and I once again salute IAF for the great honour bestowed on me," added the cricketer.

In 2008, India's World Cup winning captain Kapil Dev had received the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel of the Territorial Army.

Till now 21 eminent persons have been granted honorary ranks by the IAF. The first person was Raja of Jawhar, Raja Yashwant Rao who was conferred Flight Lieutenant rank in 1944.

JRD Tata was made an honorary Air Vice Marshal in 1974 and the last one to get such an honour was another industrialist-cum-aviator Vijaypat Singhania who was made an honorary Air Commodore in 1990.

Tendulkar is the first sportsperson to be conferred this honour. He is also the first person with no aviation background to have got this honour.

Tendulkar is arguably the best batsman in the history of cricket, having amassed some 31,000-plus runs in Test and ODI cricket with a staggering 93 international centuries under his belt.

The 37-year-old is hailed as perhaps the most complete batsman in the history of the game with no real chink in his armour. He is not only the highest run-getter in both Test and ODI versions of the game but also the only player to have scored a double century in 50-over format.

One of India's most decorated sportspersons, Tendulkar has won the country's highest sports honour - the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna - and the Padma Vibhushan award.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Hyundai Accessories

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Australia To Play Tests In Mohali and Banglore

BCCI on Thursday announced the venues for the bilateral series against Australia and New Zealand, who are scheduled to visit India in October and November respectively.

Australia will play a three-day practice match and two Tests in Mohali and Bangalore, while the three ODIs will be played in Kochi, Goa and Vizag.

The two Tests coincides with the Commonwealth Games, to be held in New Delhi from October 3-14. The first Test starts from October 2-6, while the second Test will be played from October 10-14.

The ODIs will be played on October 19, 22 and 24 respectively in Kochi, Goa and Vizag.

New Zealand will play 3 Tests in Ahmedabad, Kanpur and Mumbai. The first Test will be played from November 4-8, second Test from November 12-16 and third from November 20-24.

The Black Caps will also play five One-Day Internationals in Hyderbad, Chennai, Guwahati, Mohali and Bangalore, dates of which are not yet finalised.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Clijsters Is Focused

Clijsters refuses to contemplate a reunion with Justine Henin after the Belgian pair moved one step away from a fourth-round clash.

Kim Clijsters is first focused on overcoming Russian 27th seed Maria Kirilenko following her convincing second-round triumph over Karolina Sprem yesterday.

The eighth seed has beaten Henin twice in 2010 after a four-year gap since their final meeting before both temporarily retired - which came when Henin triumphed in the Wimbledon semi-finals.

Clijsters, who eased to a 6-3 6-2 victory over Croatian Sprem, said: "Obviously I'm not there yet. So until I'm in that position, I will think about and focus on what's ahead.

"I have mixed doubles and then singles against Kirilenko. That will be my first mental focus. And then, if I get through that, I'll think about Justine."

Wimbledon remains the only grand slam Henin has not won but she is refusing to put much pressure on herself as she relishes her first visit to SW19 for three years.

"I see this differently than in the past," the 28-year-old said. "It's like I really open my eyes now.

"In the past, after the French (Open), usually I've played well at the French, and emotionally I was coming here with a lot of pressure. I was number one also at that time.

"Now I see really things differently. A lot of things have changed but the atmosphere is just fantastic. You really feel the passion of the game."

Second seed Venus Williams and fourth seed Jelena Jankovic both advanced yesterday with the American more impressive.

The five-time winner beat Eastbourne champion Ekaterina Makarova 6-0 6-4 on Centre Court before Serbian Jankovic won 4-6 6-2 6-4 against Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak.

Three seeded players exited at the second-round stage yesterday with Israel's Shahar Peer, ranked number 13 in the draw, losing to Angelique Kerber 3-6 6-3 6-4.

Number 30 seed Yaroslava Shvedova also crashed out, losing 6-3 6-4 to Russia's Regina Kulikova, while 33rd seed Melanie Oudin went down 6-4 6-3 to Australian Jarmila Groth.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Fall of Records at Wimbledon

The power and precision of Isner and Mahut combined to produce a marathon Wimbledon encounter which emphatically rewrote the record books.

A transfixed crowd on Court 18 watched on as John Isner and Nicolas Mahut's tussle extended to a record 10 hours and 163 games without producing a winner as bad light ensured the first-round match will go into a third day.

Resuming just after 2pm after also being called off for bad light yesterday, neither player gave an inch on serve in a final set that ran to 118 games and also saw both players break the record for aces in a match - with Isner hitting 98 and Mahut 95.

With the score in the decider locked at 59-59 when play was suspended just after 9pm, the players will try for a result tomorrow.

In second-round action, Roger Federer again lived dangerously against an unfancied opponent before remaining on course to defend his title.

Ilija Bozoljac, a qualifier from Serbia ranked 152nd in the world, pushed the Swiss ace all the way in an absorbing match on Court One.

Federer, relegated from Centre Court for the first time for three years, triumphed 6-3 6-7 (4/7) 6-4 7-6 (7/5) and his serve was not broken throughout but it was his plucky opponent who earned most of the plaudits.

Third seed Novak Djokovic overcame the brutal serve of Taylor Dent to ensure a welcome early conclusion to the second match of his Wimbledon campaign.

The Serbian, whose first-round match on Monday broke the record for the tournament's latest finish, edged a tight first set that saw Dent's power amaze the Centre Court crowd before striding clear to secure a 7-6 6-1 6-4 triumph. He delivered one 148mph serve - another Wimbledon record.

Andy Roddick overcame an impressive start from Frenchman Michael Llodra to canter into the third round.
Roddick recovered from losing the first set in convincing fashion to triumph 4-6 6-4 6-1 7-6 (7/2) on Centre Court.

Nikolay Davydenko became the highest seed to crash out of the men's singles when he was beaten in four sets by Daniel Brands.

The seventh seed looked set for an easy ride against his 22-year-old German opponent when he won the opening set but Brands hit back to triumph 1-6 7-6 (7/5) 7-6 (10/8) 6-1.

Lleyton Hewitt enjoyed a straightforward passage into the third round as opponent Evgeny Korolev of Kazakhstan withdrew in the third set of their meeting on Court One.

The 2002 Wimbledon champion was leading 6-4 6-4 3-0 when Korolev called a halt to the encounter with an upper arm injury.

Gael Monfils, the 21st seed from France, will be Hewitt's next opponent after he defeated Slovakia's Karol Beck 6-4 6-4 6-7 (4/7) 6-4.

Spain's Feliciano Lopez, the 22nd seed, defeated Ricardas Berankis of Lithuania 7-5 4-6 6-3 6-4, while Yen-Hsun Lu of Chinese Taipei beat Poland's Michal Przysiezny 6-4 7-6 (9/7) 6-3.

There were also second-round wins for 12th seed Tomas Berdych, Jurgen Melzer, the 16th seed, 28th seed Albert Montanes, Victor Hanescu, Florian Mayer, Denis Istomin, Arnaud Clement and Philipp Kohlschreiber

Friday, June 18, 2010

Afridi Shines as a Leader in Asia Cup

Shahid Afridi is looking more responsible and Pakistan badly needs a true leader now, feels Wasim Akram.
As former players, we have more often than not criticized Pakistan cricket. But come the Asia Cup, and after a long time, I can see a few positives. Skipper Shahid Afridi’s 76-ball 109 run against Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup opener probably hints at good things to come.

After a long time, I saw Afridi playing a responsible innings. Even if it came in a losing cause, the knock was full of character. This innings would have put a lot confidence in Afridi as a leader. It is important for Pakistan to have a man who can lead from the front.

Making an international return after a year, Shoaib Akhtar also made an impressive comeback. There were many questions over his return. Many felt that the controversial speedster won’t mend his undisciplined ways, but I am happy that Akhtar has proved the critics wrong.

Akhtar bowled intelligently to complete his quota of 10 overs, bagging three wickets. The 35-year-old pacer not only justified the trust laid on him by the captain but also won the hearts of many of his fans. But as (coach) Waqar (Younis) pointed out, this is not the best we have seen of him. Akhtar has to be fit and consistent and that will help the team

With the positives, came a few lapses as well. The team looked out of practice and that reflected in the running between the wickets. Afridi was involved in two run outs with the Akmal brothers. This surely was a factor between winning and losing. But, I am sure the running between wickets will surely improve once the team plays a few matches.

Talking about the two youngsters who made their debut on Tuesday, I must admit that opener Shahzaib Hasan did not impress me. I saw him in the 2009 T20 World Cup and felt the 20-year-old needed a little more time. But I had a chat with Afridi before the team left for Lanka and he told me that he had a lot of faith in Shahzaib. So I guess it’s the captains’ confidence on a particular player that should matter.

If Pakistan lost a close match against the Lankans, it was because of Lasith Malinga. The guy is exceptional and I have been saying for the last two years that he is the best bowler in all forms of the game. Malinga is quick, swings the ball and has an action which is extremely difficult to pick. The 26-year-old is at times unplayable and will only get better.

Another player who made the difference was Angelo Mathews. His unbeaten 55 runs were responsible for Lanka managing a respectable 242 for 9 in 50 overs. I have worked with Mathews during my stint with IPL side Kolkata Knight Riders. He needs to improve on the bowling front but is certainly a bright prospect for the island nation. The 23-year-old player has age on his side and will certainly improve.

Asia Cup is not a very long tournament and hence it becomes very important for teams to get their act together from the start. India will certainly miss their match-winner, Yuvraj Singh, but it is always wise to rest an unfit player. With the big guns back, India have enough firepower and Bangladesh got a taste of this. I am looking forward to Saturday’s Indo-Pak clash. May the better team win!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Dhoni Bat For UNICEF Project

Indian captain MS Dhoni and his Sri Lankan, Pakistani and Bangladesh counterparts batted for the United Nation Children's Fund's healthy hat-trick scheme.
Gathered here for the ongoing Asia Cup cricket tournament, Dhoni, Kumar Sangakkara, Shahid Afridi and Shakib Al Hasan expressed their views on the grim situation and wanted everyone to rally around the project.

In his remarks, Dhoni thanked his parents for administering polio drops to him when he was a child.

"My parents took good care of me, administered polio drops and I am here. Children are the future and we need to ensure that they and their mothers remain healthy," he said.

"More than being just cricketers, we are husbands, sons and brothers and we have an obligation towards our community.

It is important that governments ensure that there is proper access to toilets, wider administration of polio drops and that the girl child goes to school," Sangakkara said.

Talking about the situation in Pakistan, Afridi said, "In Pakistan, we need to ensure that girls to go to school and polio too is a big problem."

Shakib lamented the slow progress in Bangladesh.

"We have come a long way from the 1970s when children used to die because of water contamination but more needs to be done," said Shakib said.

According to UNICEF, 45 per cent of the population in South Asia lack access to sanitation and 41 per cent of children suffer from malnutrition leading to three million infant deaths.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

India Won the Match Against Bangladesh

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni praised opening batsman Gautam Gambhir but said it were the spinners who actually scripted the six-wicket win over Bangladesh on a low and slow Dambulla.
"Spinners won it for us. It is 200 per cent difficult to bat under lights here. Gautam provided a decent start. When he gets a start he normally goes on to get a big one. It is always good to get a bonus point if we can," Dhoni said after the match.

Gambhir was adjudged man of the match for his 82 that came off 101 balls, riding on which India achieved the 168-run target.

However, it was a magic spell of four for six by part-time off-spinner Virender Sehwag that helped India bundle out Bangladesh for a meagre 167.

Dhoni also expressed satisfaction about the overall performance of the team.

"(It's) well of course, if you see most of the senior players they did well, most of them bowled really well. As the game progressed it became really difficult. Good that we batted for half an hour before the break," he said.

Meanwhile, his Bangladesh counterpart Shakib Al Hasan admitted that losing some quick wickets at the end of the innings ultimately did them in.

"Losing all those wickets in the end was the turning point. Batting was not that difficult on this pitch. After a long time the fast bowlers did well, and that's good for them.

We are up for the remaining games," he said.

Gambhir, who went through a bad patch during the Twenty20 World Cup in the West Indies, was happy to recapture his touch.

"It was only at the T20 World Cup that I did not do well, there has been a lot of talk about my form. This was a perfect pitch for me to come back on. It was a wicket where you had to graft," he said.

"If Bangladesh had got 240-260 it would have been difficult. After the start they got we did not think we could keep them down to 160. All the bowlers did well," Gambhir added.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

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Sachin Tendulkar Wants To Play At World Cup Final's

Arguably the most accomplished batsman of contemporary times, Sachin Tendulkar still has unfulfilled dreams, one of them being to win the World Cup next year.

Tendulkar, the highest run-getter in the Test and one-day format of the game, hopes to play in the final of the World Cup when it is jointly hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh early next year.

"As far as the World Cup is concerned it is a process. We don't want to jump to the 50th floor straight away, we must start on the ground floor," he said.

"We must take it step-by-step but to get there would be a fascinating journey. It is our dream, not just mine but the entire nation, to get there. To play the final in Mumbai is something you can only dream of and everything has to come together," he added.

Tendulkar said if India played to their potential, there was a good chance of being in the finals of the event.
"I think we can do something we have been longing to do for quite some time," he said.

Part of the Test side which is currently the world number one in ICC rankings, Tendulkar said the tough part was not to get there but would be to maintain it.

"To be number one is special, it was our dream and our target to get to the number one spot in Test cricket," he said.

"We have had a good run in the last 20 months. Everyone wants to be number one and we cannot relax because there are other countries who want to be number one. It means a lot to us," he added.

The 37-year-old once again parried queries on his future maintaining that he would quit the moment he felt that he had stopped enjoying his game.

"I want to play for as long as possible and as long as I have the desire and the hunger I will carry on," he was quoted as saying by 'Cricinfo'.

"The day I do not want to get out of bed and do anything then I know it will be time to go in another direction," he added.

Monday, June 14, 2010

India Won The Second T20 Against Zimbabwe

Suresh Raina led from the front with a blistering 72 as India signed off their Zimbabwe tour with a comprehensive seven-wicket win over the hosts in the second and final T20 at Harare.
Chasing 141, India made 144 for three in 18 overs at the Harare Sports Club ground with Raina dispatching Chris Mpofu to boundary for the winning runs.

Tatenda Taibu earlier top-scored with 45 and shared a 43-run stand for the fourth wicket with Charles Coventry (28 off 13) to steer Zimbabwe to 140 for five.

Raina stepped on to the field after the fall of Naman Ojha (10) in fifth over and stayed till the job was done.

Along with Murali Vijay (46), Raina shared a 79-run stand for the second wicket, which set up the second comfortable Indian win in as many days.

Raina's 44-ball knock had six fours and two sixes in it.

After an ordinary show in the three-week tour, Vijay finally got some runs under his belt and the Chennai batsman would be relived after playing a good hand in the Indian win.

Vijay and skipper Suresh Raina batted with ease and were hardly troubled by the host bowlers.

Vijay missed out on his half-century when he attempted a big shot but off Chamu Chibhabha and his checked shot landed in the hands of Graeme Cremer in the 15th over.

Raina continued the good work and carried the team home just after losing another partner in Yusuf Pathan (4).

India's consecutive win, after a lacklustre show in the ODI tri-series, would do a world of good to the confidence of its youngsters just ahead of the Asia Cup in Sri Lanka.

Earlier, confident of chasing down whatever the hosts would put on board, Raina yet again invited the hosts to bat but despite having them in clutches they leaked too many runs in the second half to allow them a come back in the match.

While in the first 10 overs India conceded just 47 runs including a mere five boundaries, spinners struggled to keep the run flow in check and the last over cost India 93 runs.

The slow bowlers could not weave the same magic they had created in the first Twenty20 and leaked 95 runs in the 12 overs shared by Pragyan Ojha, Amit Mishra and R Ashwin.

Ashwin bled most runs as he ended up giving away 48 runs in his four overs.

Taibu, whose 45 came off 40 balls with just two fours, shaped the hosts innings well and along with Charles Coventry (28 off 13) rescued the side with a defiant 43-run stand for the fourth wicket.

Before that stand opener Brendan Taylor played a patient 33-ball 27 to help the side overcome the early jolts of losing Hamilton Masakadza (2) and Chamu Chibhabha (7).

Indian pacers, especially Ashok Dinda, were exceptional and did a tremendous job. The Bengal medium fast bowler gave away just 15 runs in his four-over quota and took two wickets.

Things were set beautifully for India but gritty batting by Taibu and Coventry made it a contest for the visitors.

India: Murali Vijay, Naman Ojha(w), Suresh Raina(c), Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Yusuf Pathan, Ravichandran Ashwin, Amit Mishra, Vinay Kumar, Pragyan Ojha, Ashok Dinda
Zimbabwe: Hamilton Masakadza, Brendan Taylor, Chamu Chibhabha, Tatenda Taibu(w), Charles Coventry, Elton Chigumbura(c), Graeme Cremer, Gregory Lamb, Ray Price, Tendai Chatara, Chris Mpofu

Sunday, June 13, 2010

India Won The First T20 Against Zimbabwe

India overcame a shaky start to register their first win over Zimbabwe on the current tour as they beat the hosts by six wickets in the first Twenty20 International cricket match here on Saturday.

Chasing a modest 112 to win, India overhauled the target with five overs to spare with Yusuf Pathan (36) and Virat Kohli (27) finishing off the game for the visitors, who were shocked by the African minnows twice in the one-day tri-series.

Earlier, shaking off the tri-series rust, Indian bowlers showed discipline and restricted Zimbabwe to a meagre 111 for nine at Harare Sports Club here on Saturday.

Paceman R Vinay Kumar (3/24) was the most successful bowler with three wickets while Ashok Dinda (2/27) and Pragyan Ojha (2/11) accounted for two victims apiece.

During India's chase, big-hitting Pathan and youngster Kohli shared an unbeaten 64-run stand for the fifth wicket to rescue India from a precarious 48 for 4.

Pathan's 23-ball knock contained two fours and three sixes while Kohli faced 22 balls with three fours and a six.

India, like their opponents, began poorly as they lost openers -- Murali Vijay (5) and Naman Ojha (2) to paceman Chris Mpofu by the third over.

Skipper Suresh Raina (28) played a good hand in the middle order to re-build the innings with Rohit Sharma (10).

However, both of them returned to the dug out in the eighth over with spinner Ray Price (2/24) getting rid of them in the eighth over.

It became jittery for India but Pathan and Kohli ensured that their side do not end up facing more humiliation.

Earlier, Chamu Chibhabha (40) and Craig Ervine (30) stood tall amid ruins for the hosts, as their middle and lower order collapsed after a sound start.

Opting to field, Vinay Kumar gave India a perfect start and landed the first blow to the hosts as early as in the fourth ball of the match when he got rid of Hamilton Masakadza (1), caught by skipper Suresh Raina at extra cover.

Vinay was hit for a four and two sixes in his next over by Chibhabha and Brendan Taylor (15) but the paceman got his revenge when he caught the latter plumb in front of the wicket in the last ball of the same over.

Despite two setbacks, the hosts were off to a flier with Dinda and Vinay Kumar leaking 41 runs off the first four overs.

With runs flowing freely from the pacers, Raina introduced R Ashwin into the attack and the off-spinner responded instantly with the wicket of Tatenda Taibu (4), who found Rohit Sharma at mid-on while attempting a big shot.

After the early onslaught, runs were difficult to come by with Raina pressing into service another spinner -- Pragyan Ojha, but Chibhabha, somehow, managed to find the odd boundary.

With spinners ruling the roost in the low and slow Harare Sports Ground pitch, Raina got tempted to use more of slow bowlers and the decision paid off well with Piyush Chawla trapping dangerous-looking Chibhabha, who entertained with five fours and a six during his 30-ball stay.

Ojha then dismissed rival skipper Elton Chigumbura (3) and Greg Lamb (0) in space of three deliveries to leave the hosts gasping at 81 for six.

Dinda then did an Ojha by scalping Ervine and Raymond Price in the penultimate over of the innings.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

India Team To break the jinx

India get a chance to make amends for recent debacles, climb up the ODI rankings and break a 15-year jinx in the Asia Cup which takes off on Tuesday with home favourites Sri Lanka facing the ever-so-unpredictable Pakistan in the opening match.

Four-time champions India, who come here after twin debacles in the Twenty20 World Cup and the recent tri-series in Zimbabwe, last won the title 15 years ago in the United Arab Emirates and will open their campaign on June 16 against Bangladesh.

Before that, with a hat-trick of titles in sight, Sri Lanka would look to exploit the home conditions against Pakistan at the Rangiri Dambulla ground on Tuesday.

Considering the fact that Sri Lanka won the title in the previous two editions, the hosts are slight favourites over the others in the four-nation tournament.

The tournament opener between Sri Lanka and Pakistan holds promise as on paper both the teams are equally matched in terms of potential, though the buoyant hosts have the more experienced players, who have a reputation of being devastating in their own backyard.

The inclusion of wily off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan, who recovered from an injury sustained during the Twenty20 World Cup, has strengthened the Kumar Sangakkara-led Sri Lankan side.

Even though both Sri Lanka and Pakistan made it to the semifinals of the Twenty20 World Cup in the West Indies, the hosts will draw confidence from their recent tri-series victory in Zimbabwe.

Like India, Sri Lanka too had fielded a second string team in Zimbabwe, but the Lankan young guns rose to the occasion to come out triumphant in the tri-series.

What would be a morale-booster for Sri Lanka is dashing Tillakratne Dilshan's return to form.

Leading a young side in the tri-series, Dilshan made a rollicking return to form with a delectable century in the title clash against hosts Zimbabwe.

To add to it, Sri Lanka would be bolstered by the return of regular skipper Sangakkara and senior batsman Mahela Jayawardene, who has been in sublime form this season.

If Dilshan and Jayawardene combine well at the top of the order, it could spell trouble for Pakistan who had last won the title in 2000 in Bangladesh.

The 21-year-old Angelo Mathews will be another Sri Lankan to watch out for over the next two weeks as the quality all-rounder seeks to prove his supremacy in the biennial event.

Mathews has the ability to turn the match on its head with either bat or ball, which reflected in his performances over the last eight months.

However, the likes of Thilina Kandamby and Thilan Samaraweera will be under little pressure to perform, especially after their below-par performance in Zimbabwe.

What might work wonders for the Lankans in the tournament is the presence of a three-pronged varied spin attack in Muralitharan, Suraj Randiv and Rangana Herath in the bowler-friendly Dambulla wicket.

Pakistan, on the other hand, have this uncanny knack of coming back stronger from everycontroversy they stumble upon.

However, what remains to be seen is the chemistry between newly-appointed captain Shahid Afridi and coach Waqar Younis.

It will be a test of character for Afridi to unite the team which has a history of dressing room problems and the return of former captain Shoaib Malik, seen as a trouble maker, will only make his job difficult.

The tournament is also seen as a last-gasp chance for veteran Shoaib Akhtar to revive his chequered career after the maverick fast bowler was included in the squad along with controversial pace colleague Mohammad Asif.

The talismanic Akhtar, who can hurl the ball at speeds over 150 kmph when in his elements, returns to international cricket after a long hiatus, forced by injuries and disciplinary issues.

But the Afridi-led Pakistan can never be written off as they have the potential to bounce back like wounded tigers when they are pushed to the wall.

Though Afridi lamented that he was not given the right team for the Twenty20 World Cup, Pakistan came up with stunning performances to make it to the last four stage in the Caribbean.

The Pakistan team have exciting batsmen in Akmal brothers -- Kamran and Umar, Salman Butt, Imran Farhat and Malik, who recently tied the know with Indian tennis ace Sania Mirza.

Even though Pakistan have two senior pacers in Akhtar and Asif in the team, the bowling attack will be lead by young left-arm pacer Mohammad Aamer.

Pakistan: Shahid Afridi (Captain), Salman Butt, Abdul Razzaq, Abdur Rehman, Asad Shafiq, Imran Farhat, Kamran Akmal, Mahammad Aamer, Mohammad Asif, Saaed Ajmal, Shahzaib Hassan, Shoaib Akthar, Shoaib Mallik, Umar Akmal, Umar Amin.

Sri Lanka: Kumar Sangakarra (Captain), Muttiah Muralitharan, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Rangana Herath, Mahela Jayawardene, Suraj Ranjiv, Thilina Kamdamby, Chamara Kapugedara, Nuwan Kulasekara, Parvez Maroof, Lasith Mallinga, Angelo Mathews, Thilan Samaweera, Upul Tharanga, Chanaka Welegedara.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Tight Schedule For South African Team

Cricket South Africa have announced a bumper international programme of matches in all three formats of the game against Zimbabwe, Pakistan and India ahead of the 2011 WC.

The season consists of three Tests against India, five home one-day internationals against India and a further three against Zimbabwe plus a five-match ODI series against Pakistan at the neutral venue of the United Arab Emirates.

There will also be three home Twenty20 matches against Zimbabwe and India plus an away match against Pakistan.

Captain Graeme Smith is hoping the encounters will stand the Proteas in good stead for the World Cup, to be held on the Asian sub-continent in February and March.

He said: "We only have 13 ODIs left to prepare for the ICC World Cup and we must make the maximum use of all of them.

"The number-one Test match ranking is also a massive honour in our great game. We have had a very good run in this format over the past two years with away series wins in England and Australia and two drawn series in India.

"We can reward all the hard work put in by the playing and support staff by winning the Castle Test series. This is one of our priority targets for the summer.

"We also owe our supporters some good Standard Bank Pro20 results after the disappointment of the ICC World Twenty20."

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Sachin Supports England For Ashes

Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar believes England have every chance of retaining the Ashes on Australian soil this winter.

Tendulkar, widely regarded as one of the best batsmen in the history of the game, believes England's chances will largely depend on the form of Kevin Pietersen and Graeme Swann down under, while he also expects Test rookie Eoin Morgan to feature prominently.

Tendulkar was speaking in London at a NatWest celebration to mark its 30th season supporting English cricket.

Tendulkar, in his capacity as global ambassador for the RBS Group, kicked-off the start of the 2010 NatWest series which will see England play Australia, Bangladesh and Pakistan in 13 one-day internationals and two T20 events from June to September this year.

But with the focus clearly on England's bid to retain the Ashes in Australia this winter, Tendulkar was adamant that they had every chance against an Australia side still in the process of rebuilding.

Tendulkar, 37, believes England will be high in confidence following their ICC World Twenty20 success in the West Indies in April.

"I think England have a good chance of retaining the Ashes," said Tendulkar.

"The key members for England will be Pietersen, Morgan, and in the bowling department - Swann.

"For me they will be the key members of the team. Then after that you have the experience of Andrew Strauss, so they can do something special in Australia.

"Swann will play a big role so I think England definitely have a good chance.

"Also, from what I have seen of Morgan, he looks a solid player. He can control the pace of the game quite nicely - certainly in T20 and one-day matches.

"The winning of a major tournament gives you confidence and this is what winning the ICC T20 World Cup has done for England.

"I am sure at this moment England feel as though they can pull off any situation. It's all about confidence and positive energy and once you have this, then anything is possible.

"I would not use the word vulnerable to describe Australia. But they have lost some match-winners.
"They are going to miss those players and it takes time to replace them."

Tendulkar is currently taking a break from the game to spend time with his family but will return to play for India against Sri Lanka in a Test series which starts in July.

After that, he has set his sights on lifting the 2011 World Cup with India in Mumbai.

The country are currently the Test game's world number one and Tendulkar is extremely proud of that achievement.

But to secure World Cup victory on home soil would be the pinnacle of his outstanding career.
"I want to play for as long as possible and as long as I have the desire and the hunger I will carry on," he added. "The day I do not want to get out of bed and do anything then I know it will be time to go in another direction.

"To be number one is special, it was our dream and our target to get to the number one spot in Test cricket.
"We have had a good run in the last 20 months. Everyone wants to be number one and we cannot relax because there are other countries who want to be number one. It means a lot to us.
"As far as the World Cup is concerned it is a process. We don't want to jump to the 50th floor, we must start on the ground floor.

"We must take it step-by-step but to get there would be a fascinating journey. It is our dream, not just mine but the entire nation, to get there. To play the final in Mumbai is something you can only dream of and everything has to come together.

"But if we can play to the best of our potential then I think we can do something we have been longing to do for quite some time."

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Srilanka wins the Tri-Series

Sri Lanka captain Tillakaratne Dilshan scored a commanding century to help his side win the Tri-Nation series final against Zimbabwe in Harare.

Dilshan (108 not out) shared a 160-run opening stand with Upul Tharanga (72) as the hosts lost just one wicket to overcome Zimbabwe's below-par total of 199, which largely came on the back of former captain Tatenda Taibu's 71.

Dilhara Fernando took three wickets, while spin duo Ajantha and Jeevan Mendis snared two apiece to bowl out the hosts and justify their skipper's decision of fielding first.

In reply, Dilshan and Tharanga gave their side a flying start.

Dilshan was more aggressive and blasted two fours off Chris Mpofu in the fifth over as the visitors posted 34 for no loss.

The duo continued to play attacking strokes and looked in complete control in the following overs.

Dilshan raced to his half century with a square cut in the 16th over and Tharanga hit a towering six in the next to bring 100 runs up for his side.

Tharanga too reached 50 soon after with a four off Graeme Cremer in the 18th over.

He along with Dilshan took the score to 155 at the end of the 25th over, but became a victim of bad running between the wickets in the next.

Dinesh Chandimal (16no) joined his captain in the middle and made sure Sri Lanka were home without any further damage.

Earlier, Sri Lanka's bowlers kept a tight leash on Zimbabwe's batsmen right from the start, and their efforts were rewarded in the fifth over when Hamilton Masakadza (four) nicked a Nuwan Kulasekara outswinger to wicketkeeper Chandimal.

Brendan Taylor (19) tried to break the shackles and smashed a boundary off Kulasekara in the ninth over and added another off Fernando in the next.

But the bowler had the last laugh when he sent Taylor packing in the same over, thanks to a brilliant diving catch by Thilan Samaraweera at slips.

Craig Ervine (nine) too ran himself out in the 17th over after struggling against a good old-fashioned spin bowling by Ajantha Mendis.

Taibu and Greg Lamb played patiently in the middle overs to help the hosts recover from the early jolts.
Taibu blasted two fours off Suraj Randiv in the 24th over and completed his well-paced half-century four overs later.

He celebrated the achievement with a stylish reverse sweep off Dilshan in the 30th over as Zimbabwe reached 107 for three.

But the batsman fell to Fernando in the 36th over after adding 21 more runs to his account.
Skipper Elton Chigumbura (10) too lost his wicket soon after when he failed to read a Jeevan Mendis flipper and hit it straight to Dilshan at covers.

Lamb (37) followed his skipper back to the pavilion as well when Jeevan Mendis clean bowled him in the 42nd over and Charles Coventry (18) lost his wicket to Jeevan Mendis in the next.
Cremer, Ray Price and Chris Mpofu did not last long either and followed the procession as the hosts were bowled out with an over to spare.

Zimbabwe: Hamilton Masakadza, Brendan Taylor, Charles Coventry, Elton Chigumbura (C), Tatenda Taibu (W), Craig Ervine, Greg Lamb, Chris Mpofu, Graeme Cremer, Prosper Utseya, Ray Price

Sri Lanka: Upul Tharanga, Tillakaratne Dilshan (C), Dinesh Chandimal (W), Chamara Kapugedara, Angelo Mathews, Thilan Samaraweera, Jeewan Mendis, Ajantha Mendis, Suraj Randiv, Nuwan Kulasekara, Dilhara Fernando

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Indian Team for Asia Cup : Sachin rested and Yuvi Dropped

Cracking the whip on non-performers, national selectors on Monday axed the struggling duo of Yuvraj Singh and Yusuf Pathan and rested veteran Sachin Tendulkar from India's 15-member squad for this month's Asia Cup cricket tournament in Sri Lanka.

Tendulkar had sought a break to spend time with his children, while Yuvraj and Yusuf's ouster was on the cards after a series of disappointing performances in recent times as the selectors laid stress on form and fitness.

Flamboyant opener Virender Sehwag, who was laid low with a shoulder injury and missed the Twenty20 World Cup, returned to the squad while wicket-keeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik and leg-spinner Amit Mishra were axed.

"Sachin Tendulkar requested the Board not to consider him for the Asia Cup, as he wanted to spend time with his children, in view of the hectic cricket season ahead," BCCI Secretary N Srinivasan said in a statement after the selection meeting which lasted close to two hours.

20-year-old Jharkhand batsman Saurabh Tiwary, who was quite impressive in the third edition of the Indian Premier League, was rewarded with a berth in the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led squad along with Bengal pacer Ashok Dinda.

"A lot of stress was given on the fitness of the players. Fitness and fielding are very important. We have gone through the record of last one year and put lot of stress on it. In recent past, we lost some matches or struggled in some matches because of poor fielding," chairman of selectors Kris Srikkanth told reporters.

"We also put stress on consistent performance. Lot of players have done consistently well and apart from the seniors, we have blooded some youngsters as well so that they know what international cricket is all about," he explained.

Srikkanth said skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who attended the meeting, also gave his inputs.

"It was a happy meeting with captain (MS Dhoni) and secretary (N Srinivasan) and I think the captain is also convinced. This is the best possible side. I'm not going to speak about any individual player," Srikkanth said.

The selectors, who had opted to rest most of the seniors for the tri-series in Zimbabwe, chose a full-strength team which included seniors like pacer Zaheer Khan, opener Gautam Gambhir and spin spearhead Harbhajan Singh.

Tamil Nadu off-spinner R Ashwin, who is also a decent batsman, has been retained in the squad. Left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha returned to the team at the expense of leg-spinner Amit Mishra, who failed to make much of an impact in the disastrous tour of Zimbabwe.

The team in Zimbabwe, which was led by Suresh Raina, couldn't make the finals of and suffered consecutive humiliating losses to the African minnows.

Although Raina has retained his place, other flops like Yusuf and Mishra have been shown the door.

The pace duo of Abhishek Nayar and Sudeep Tyagi who had featured in India's squad during the home series against South Africa in February have not found favour this time around.

The squad, a fine blend of youth and experience, has six specialist batsmen, four pacers, three spinners and an all-rounder in Ravindra Jadeja.

Captain Dhoni is the lone specialist wicket-keeper in the squad.

Squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Captain), Virender Sehwag (Vice-Captain), Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja, Harbhajan Singh, Praveen Kumar, Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra, Pragyan Ojha, Ashok Dinda, R Ashwin, Saurabh Tiwary.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Sehwag Retains No .1 Test batsman Spot

Flamboyant Virender Sehwag maintained his number one position in the ICC rankings for Test batsmen and India also held on to its top spot in the latest chart.

Sehwag is leading the list with 863 points and is followed by South Africa's Hashim Amla (842) and Sri Lanka's Mahela Jayawardene (836).

Left-handed opener Gautam Gambhir (824) and batting great Sachin Tendulkar (805) are the other two Indian batsmen in top-10 at number six and seven positions respectively.

VVS Laxman (14) and Rahul Dravid (16) also had their rankings unchanged.

In the bowlers list, India have two players in the top-10 with paceman Zaheer Khan placed at number six followed by spinner Harbhajan Singh.

In the teams' list, India are at the top with 124 points followed by South Africa (120) and Australia (119).

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Zimbabwe Again shocked Lankans

Continuing their giant-killing spree, hosts Zimbabwe rode on Brendan Taylor's second ODI ton to pull off a spectacular eight-wicket win over Sri Lanka in an inconsequential match of the tri-series here on Monday.

With both the teams having already made it to the summit clash, Monday's match was of merely academic interest but Zimbabwe proved that their back-to-back wins against India was no fluke as they upstaged Sri Lanka in the dress-rehearsal for Wednesday's final.

Put into bat, Sri Lanka got off to a flier, courtesy the 122-run stand between captain Tillakaratne Dilshan (78) and Upul Tharanga (69) but the Zimbabwe bowlers showed tremendous resilience to eventually bowl out the visitors for a modest 236 in 47.5 overs at the Harare Sports Club.

And with Taylor (119 not out) extending his sensational form in the tournament, Zimbabwe cruised to 240 for two in 47.5 overs to clinch the match.

Taylor's sterling unbeaten 137-ball knock was studded with nine fours and a six.

Taylor got good support from Chamu Chibhaba (58) with whom he shared 134 runs for the second wicket and then completed the chase in Tatenda Taibu's (42 not out) company with the duo putting on an unbeaten 92-run stand.

Earlier, Sri Lanka could not make the most of a flying start and folded for 236 inside 48 overs.

Sri Lanka were off to a brilliant start with Dilshan (78 off 66 balls) and Tharanga (69 off 97 balls) adding 122 runs for the opening stand at a run-a-ball rate.

The Zimbabwean bowlers, however, made a spirited comeback after the initial thrashing and ran through the middle and lower order to bowl out the Lankans in 47.5 overs.

For the hosts, Chris Mpofu, Prosper Utseya and Graeme Cremer scalped two wickets apiece.

Apart from the openers, only three other Lankan batsman reached double digit scores.

Dilshan wasted no time in asserting himself and thrived in Tharanga's company as the duo took the Zimbabwean attack by the scruff of its neck.

Zimbabwe looked in for a leather-hunt as the Lankan openers took the score past the 100-mark without showing any signs of a let-up.

Finally, Utseya not only broke the stand but also triggered a mid-innings collapse when he removed Dilshan and last match's centurion Dinesh Chandimal in quick successions to bring some relief to the Zimbabwean camp.

Sri Lanka suddenly started losing wickets at regular intervals, courtesy some tidy work by the Zimbabwean bowlers as they brought down the Lankan innings with 2.1 overs to spare.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

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Baseball Dana

Hello mates it gives me immense pleasure to introduce the best things to best people.Recently i had come across this interesting website and a blog which is for Angels & Dodgers fan .One of the primary reasons why Los Angeles was awarded an American League expansion franchise for the 1961 season was because actor/singer turned broadcast mogul Gene Autry wanted to secure radio broadcast rights for the newly planned Los Angeles American League franchise. His KMPC (710 AM, now KSPN) was the radio home of the Los Angeles Dodgers, from the time they arrived from Brooklyn, New York in time for the 1958 baseball season, and actually came away from the 1960 Winter Meetings with his own team.Angels baseball is one of the famous among the baseball fans.

Dana Bashor's Baseball Fan site provides you with almost all the important updates which happens regularly.Also Dana's music channel  has become  one among the prominent lovable music channel among the fans. I remember watching the Dodgers with my dad and brothers when I was young and growing up in the valley.  Now I am an Angels fan, but I still love the Dodgers too, it’s just that I have lived in OC for quite sometime now and the Angels are my local team.

Hopefully I can share  some great baseball banter with other baseball fans. Looking forward to it!!!!  Also don’t forget to drop by the blog and leave a comment of your favorite baseball moment.So log on to the site and get the maximum!Cheers !

England thrashes Bangladesh

Steven Finn took five wickets as England thrashed Bangladesh by an innings and 80 runs inside three days in the second Test to wrap up a 2-0 series victory at Old Trafford here on Sunday.

Bangladesh, following-on, were dismissed for 123 in 34.1 overs with fast bowler Finn taking five wickets for 42 runs in 10 overs.

James Anderson took three for 16 in 10 on his Lancashire home ground.

Defeat meant Bangladesh have now lost 34 of their 68 Tests by an innings.

Anderson and Finn combined to reduce Bangladesh, who'd suffered a dramatic collapse in yesterday's final session, to 37 for five in the 13th over. Only Mohammad Mahmudullah, with 38, offered much resistance.

England, after rain meant no play was possible before lunch, saw captain Andrew Strauss enforce the follow-on. Bangladesh, dismissed for 216 after losing all 10 first innings wickets after tea on Saturday, were still 203 runs behind England's 419.

In overcast conditions, their top order struggled against England's new ball pair on Sunday.

England captured the prize wicket of Tamim Iqbal, who'd made hundreds in his last two knocks, including 108 in the first innings of this match, when the left-hander was caught behind second ball for just two fending at a rising Anderson delivery.

It was the first time in six innings against England that Tamim had failed to pass fifty.

Imrul Kayes, the Tigers' other left-handed opener, then fell hooking Finn for the second time in the match, with Test debutant Ajmal Shahzad once more taking a catch at long leg.

Junaid Siddique was then caught by Kevin Pietersen in the gully off Anderson and when Finn had Jahurul Islam edging through to wicketkeeper Matt Prior for naught, after trying to cut a lifting ball that was too close to him, Bangladesh were 21 for four off eight overs.

The 6ft 8in quick had taken two wickets for 12 runs in four overs, including two for three in seven balls. Mohammad Ashraful off-drove Finn for four in textbook fashion.

However, his innings of 14 ended when he couldn't keep down an Anderson delivery that moved off the pitch and edged to Jonathan Trott at first slip.

Bangladesh were now 37 for five, with Anderson having taken three wickets for 10 runs in 6.2 overs.

And the Tigers were 39 for six when Yorkshire quick Shahzad bowled Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan between bat and pad.

But four byes, conceded by Prior -- nursing a finger injury -- off the bowling of off-spinner Graeme Swann gave Bangladesh the consolation of surpassing their record lowest Test innings score of 62 against Sri Lanka in Colombo in 2007.

Mahmudullah several times hooked Finn to the boundary but, trying to repeat the stroke, he edged and was well caught by a leaping Prior to end a 52-ball innings featuring five fours.

Bangladesh were now 97 for eight and that became 119 for nine when Shafiul Islam was caught at first slip by Strauss off Finn.

And the match ended when Abdur Razzak holed out off Swann.

England's total saw Ian Bell make 128. Bell's third hundred in five Tests against Bangladesh took his average against the Tigers to 158.25.

Swann, with five wickets for 76 runs -- his first five-wicket Test haul in England -- did the bulk of the damage in Bangladesh's first innings, after they had been 153 for one.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Symonds Feels Happy to be out of International Cricket

The grind of international cricket made Andrew Symonds feel "caged" and the temperamental Australian all-rounder says his only regret is signing a contract that had a 'keep off drinking' clause in it.

Looking back at his tumultuous career, Symonds said he had stopped enjoying the game and was in fact relieved when Cricket Australia tore up his contract.

"Losing my contract didn't hurt me, because of what playing for Australia had become. I wasn't having fun anymore. I wasn't enjoying it. I felt like I was in a cage. Always under the microscope. Once I had got home from England, and everything had settled down, it was a relief," he said.

Here to play for Surrey, the burly all-rounder with a recurring alcohol problem said he doesn't regret anything other than signing a contract that barred him from drinking.

"If I had my time again I would have said, 'You know what? There is no way I'm signing that.' No one else had to do it. And let's be honest, under that sort of scrutiny I was always going to bust at some stage," he said.

It was around this time last year that Symonds was sent back midway through the Twenty20 World Cup after going out for a drink. On landing back home, Symonds found himself without a contract but instead of being upset, he felt relieved.

"I was diagnosed as a binge-drinker. With all the things that went with international cricket there was never enough time for myself. So when I got my day off, I would just guzzle it, guzzle it like they weren't making it anymore, just binge. It was not smart," he said.

"I'm passionate about cricket, but it is not the be all and end all of my life. To me life is about fun. You have got to make a living, but not every day is about work. My life became difficult to lead.

"With the amount of things I had on my plate - cricket, sponsors, media - I just ended up having no time for myself. And that's what wore me down. When I got my chance to have a drink I would let nothing get in the way of it," he added.

Symonds also claimed he was not to be blamed for the bar brawls he often featured in.

"People knew they could target me. Whatever I did and wherever I went I felt there was a chance that someone was going to try and push my buttons. In the end I just couldn't go to the pub," he recalled.

Symonds, who turned freelancer after that and plays in the Indian Premier League, said he is a happier person now.

"Mate, my life right now is just A1. Just great. My mates back home ask me what I'm doing now, and I'm like: 'Well, I'm just going to London to play cricket for a few weeks.' They say: 'What will you do when you come back?' 'I'll probably go fishing for a couple of months.' They can't believe it," he says

Thursday, June 3, 2010


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IPL is free from bribe says SHAH

Rubbishing Adam Gilchrist's claim that the Indian Premier League (IPL) was an "easy target" for match-fixers, IPL Vice Chairman Niranjan Shah on Monday said that the third edition of the cash-awash Twenty20 League was played in a fair and transparent manner.

"All the IPL matches were played under fair and transparent manner. There was no evidence of match fixing and even the anti-corruption team of ICC has given a clean chit to IPL-3," Shah told reporters here.

"Besides, BCCI and IPL officials are keen and committed to keep IPL matches clean and corruption free. I don't know why Gilchrist has given such a statement," he added.

Talking to an English daily, the Deccan Chargers skipper had said IPL was an easy target for match-fixers as players are accessible during the event.

"It's been discussed among players in the IPL - more wondering whether it goes on. There's a strong thought that we'd be naive to think it's not happening, because it's a pretty easy target. There's a lot of accessibility to players and it's early in its governance," Gilchrist had said.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Team India Waiting to take revenge

Back in their elements after the opening match debacle, India will have a score to settle when they take on hosts Zimbabwe in the ongoing Tri-Series on Thursday.

Zimbabwe had spoiled Suresh Raina's captaincy debut when they inflicted a stunning six-wicket defeat on India in the tournament opener in Bulawayo but the visitors were quick to recover as they thumped Sri Lanka in their second outing to bounce back.

At the halfway stage, all three teams have one win and a defeat against their names and India will go all out for a win at the Harare Sports Club to put one foot in the June 9 final of the tournament.

For India, their batting has been the biggest strength so far as they posted 285 in the first match and chased down 242 with consummate ease in the second tie with 6.3 overs to spare.

Batting mainstay Rohit Sharma has been in the form of his life as he slammed consecutive centuries to anchor the Indian innings in both the matches. All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja and vice-captain Virat Kohli have also sizzled with the bat.

The team, however, has not been served well by its openers. Both Dinesh Karthik and Murali Vijay could not give starts that India is so used to when Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir open the innings.

Raina, on his part, looked in good nick in both the matches but the team is yet to get a big knock from the skipper.

The last time they met Zimbabwe, it was India's inexperienced pacers which let them down. But in the match against Sri Lanka, the young guns put up a better bowling performance with Ashok Dinda and Umesh Yadav looking better bowlers.

The spinners, however, have done a decent job with Amit Mishra and Ojha doing well and Ravindra Jadeja chipping in.

Zimbabwe, meanwhile, will require something extraordinary on thursday to pull off a repeat performance against the mighty Indians.

Their high-flying campaign has already been brought down to earth by Sri Lanka last night when the hosts were skittled out for a paltry 118 in 24.5 overs in a rain-curtained match.

The Lankans led by skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan produced a blistering batting performance to chase down the target in just 15.2 over to inflict a massive nine-wicket defeat on the hosts.

Zimbabwe's batting scorecard wore contrasting looks in the last two matches. While against India, everybody chipped in with meaningful contributions, against Sri Lanka only three could reach double figures.

Sania Mirza On a Winning Streak

Sania Mirza was off to a winning start in women's doubles event as the Indian and her Dane partner Caroline Wozniacki notched up a straight-set win to enter the second round of the Wimbledon.
Sania, who lost in the first round of the singles event, and Wozniacki beat local favourites Anne Keothavong and Melanie South 6-4, 6-1.
The Indo-Dane pair will now be up against the winners of the match between the Russian-Czech team of Maria Kondratieva and Vladimira Uhlirova and the 11th seeded Zimbabwean-Slovak combination of Cara Black and Daniela Hantuchova.
There was more good news for India in the men's doubles event with old warhorse Leander Paes and his Czech partner Lukas Dlouhy winning their opening round match.
Third seeds Paes and Dlouhy shrugged off a one-set deficit to beat South African Rik De Voest and German Mischa Zverev 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-3 in a hard-fought contest.
Paes and Dlouhy will next face winners of the match between Colombians Alejandro Falla and Santiago Giraldo and the Slovak-Ukrainian pairing of Lukas Lacko and Sergiy Stakhovsky.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

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