|S P O R T||
Wednesday, April 28, 1999
Maldives down Nepal, move
Azharuddin set to overtake Kapil
team leaves with high hopes
get taste of hooliganism
loses battle against IAAF
leap-frogs to 151st spot
Powell replaces Hooper
Punjab Police shooters corner
to play in England
Maldives down Nepal, move into semis
MARGAO, April 27 (PTI) Last editions runners-up Maldives lived up to their expectations to score a 3-2 win over Nepal in group "B" and set-up a semifinal clash with defending champions India in the SAFF Football Tournament here today.
Maldives, who needed a draw to qualify for semifinals, drew first blood through Shah Ismail (2nd minute). Nepal restored parity in the 65th minute via Hari Khadka off a penalty when he was brought down by defender Ali Shahin.
Maldives then went into lead in 74th minute off another move by Mohammed Wildhan. A few minutes later they consolidated the lead through substitute Mausoon Bul Ghafoor. Nepal pulled one back in the injury time with Khadka scoring again.
With this win, Maldives topped the table with four points followed by Nepal (three points). Maldives will play India in a grudge match on April 29 while Nepal will take on Bangladesh in the second semifinal later in the day.
Maldives skipper Mohamed Ibrahim, who played well thwarting the moves of Nepal forwards, was adjudged the best player of the match. He received a cash prize of Rs 10,000.
Both the teams played an attacking game and were evenly matched. Maldives, who had better of exchanges in the first half, exploited the shaky Nepal defence.
Ashraf Luthfy, who initiated the moves from his own half, sent a pass to Mohammed Wildhan. Wildhan eluded defender Rakesh Shrasth and relayed the ball to Shah Ismail, who beat two defenders and the keeper Upendra Man Singh to net the goal with a deft angular placement.
Maldives could have consolidated the lead in the 28th minute when Mohammed Mizan, from the right, floated the ball into the box, which beat two defenders, to unmarked Ali Shiham. Shiham sent a first time left footer which hit the side netting.
Nepal, who had earlier defeated Sri Lanka 3-2, did not exert much. They built their moves from the middle but were dispossessed by the rival defenders, who gave little room for manoeuvre. However, they had a good chance to restore parity in the 35th minute when defender Gopal Maharjan, who moved up, floated the ball into the box.
But a timely interception by the goalkeeper prevented Ramesh and Naresh from scoring.
After crossing over, Nepal restored parity in the 65th minute off a penalty after missing two scoring chances.
Hari Khadka, who was moving dangerously inside the box with the ball, was bought down by defender Ali Shahin. Referee Michael Andrews of India awarded a penalty, which was converted by Khadka.
Nepals Naresh Joshi, the hero of their victory over Sri Lanka, was well marked by rival defender. However, he managed to elude his marker and took a left footer which was parried by keeper Ishag Easa.
Maldives, who made moves after the rivals lost the ball, exploited Nepals defence through aerial passes and scored two quick goals off counter moves to seal the Himalayan kingdoms fate.
In 74th minute substitute Mausoon Abul Ghafoor, who came in place of Shah Ismail ran a solo, beat a defender and relayed the ball to Mohamed Wildhan, who slammed the ball home.
Goaded by the success, Maldives kept on the pressure and added their third goal a few minutes later through Mausoon Abul Ghafoor.
Atanu Lahiri wins C'wealth chess title
BIKANER, April 27 (UNI) Atanu Lahiri of India won the sixth Commonwealth Chess Championship after the end of the tenth and final round here yesterday.
Though GM Alexander Baburin of Ireland emerged the leader with 8.5 points by drawing with IM P. Konguvel but he could not be given the title as Ireland is outside the Commonwealth Federation.
Atanu Lahiri of LIC got the better of IM V. Koshy in a modern defence game. Atanu played the kingside attack variation after Koshy had earlier turned down his draw offer.
Koshy got into an inferior position with a risky move, that did not offer much counter-chances. Atanu with white capitalised on the advantage with a play on the kingside. He finished the game with a decisive kingside attack, which won him a piece and the title. Atanu got $ 1500 and Baburin got $ 2500.
The Commonwealth womens title was won by Bhagyashree Thipsay of India, who also collected her second WGM norm by drawing with IM Mohamood Lodhi of Pakistan. Bhagyashree, who is an Assistant General Manager in IDBI, was in excellent form to net 6.5 points.
The two Indian grandmasters Dibyendu Barua and Pravin M Thipsay played a draw amongst themselves to tie on seven points. However, Barua was declared third on a latter tie-break.
Sandipan Chanda and Sunder Rajan Kidambi also earned a place in the prize winners list and IM K. Murugan made it to the top seven by outplaying PDS Girinath.
Sandipan Chanda defeated Sriram Jha in a theoretical battle in the Sicilian Dragon. Sandipan made his maiden IM-norm in the process.
Anup Deshmukh became an international master when he won against his LIC team-mate Dinesh Kumar Sharma.
Results: Baburin drew P. Konguvel, Atanu Lahiri beat V. Koshy, D. Barua drew P.M. Thipsay ,K. Murugan beat Girinath, S.R. Kidambi beat E.S. Gokhale, S. Chande beat S.R. Jha, Bhagyashree T. drew M. Lodhi, Nassir Wazih beat Swati Ghati, R.B. Ramesh beat Koneru Hampy.
Final standings: 1 A. Baburin (Ireland) (8.5 points), 2. Atanu Lahiri (India) (8) 3. D. Barua (India) (7) 4. P.M. Thipsay (India) (7), 5. K. Murugan (India) (7), 6. S.R. Kidambi (India) (7), 7. Sandipan Chande (India) (7).
Women 1 Bhagyashree Thipsay (6.5 points), 2 Swati Ghate (5.5), 3 Koneru Humpy (5.5).
India have mixed record against rivals
MUMBAI, April 27 (PTI) India have a mixed record of success in limited overs internationals against their five World Cup group "A" rivals South Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya, holders Sri Lanka and the hosts England.
India, bidding to regain the most coveted crown in the limited overs form of the game, commence their group campaign against South Africa, installed as strong favourites by the bookies, at Hove on May 15.
Their record against the Proteas, whom India met only for the first time after the dismantling of apartheid in South Africa in the early part of this decade, is very poor.
They have also lost tamely in their only previous World Cup encounter against the South Africans at Adelaide in 1992.
In all, the two teams have met 27 times (10 in India 12 in South Africa and the remaining 5 in a neutral venue) and the Indians have won eight and lost 18 of these ties for a dismal success rate of 30.77 per cent (one match ended in no result).
India have won six and lost four times at home against the superbly fit South Africans (60 per cent success rate), won only two and lost nine of their ties (40 per cent) in South Africa and lost all their five ties (o per cent) in neutral venues.
If India win their opening clash at Hove it will be their first win over South Africa in a neutral venue.
The success rate against South Africa overall is the lowest for India as compared to their showing against the other four teams in their group.
Indias second group "A" clash is against Zimbabwe on May 19 at Leicester, which has a strong Indian population.
Indias record against Zimbabwe is also very good at 79 per cent. They have won 18, lost only four and tied two of their 24 face-offs (nine in India, five in Zimbabwe and the rest in neutral territories).
The Indians have won eight of their nine matches at home (the other being tied) for a success rate of 94 per cent and clinched three and lost two of the five matches played in Zimbabwe for a success rate of 60 per cent.
In neutral venues, India have come out trumps over Zimbabwe on seven occasions and lost on two occasions while the two teams had also been involved in a tie once giving the former a success rate of 75 per cent.
The two teams have met six times in the World Cup (twice in England in 1983, twice in 1987-88 at home and once each in 1992 (New Zealand) and 1996 (at home).
India have come out on top in all six World Cup meetings though in 1983 in their first meeting India were pushed to the brink before being rescued by their skipper Kapil Devs masterly 175 not out at Tunbridge Wells and went on to lift the Cup.
India have won three of the four matches, all at home, against Kenya, whom they are to meet at Bristol on May 23, for an overall success rate of 75 per cent. The two teams would clash in the World Cup for the first time.
Indias fourth match in the World Cup would be against reigning champions Lanka at Taunton on May 26 and they would be striving for their first win in the mega event over the emerald islanders in their fifth meeting.
India have met the Lankans four times in the World Cup and have been beaten thrice (once in 1979 and twice in 1996) while on the fourth occasion, in the 1992 World Cup at Mackay in Australia, the match was abandoned due to rain after only two balls were bowled.
Indias overall record against Lanka is, however, on the positive side, 32 wins as compared to 22 losses in 59 matches (five ending in no result) for a success rate of nearly 60 per cent.
India have dominated their clashes at home, being credited with 17 wins as against eight losses in 25 matches (68 per cent success) and were on the receiving end in matches played in the Emerald Isle with India winning only 5 out of 16 encounters (31 per cent success).
Indias record against Lanka in neutral venues is also impressive 10 wins as compared to three losses in 13 matches (76 per cent success).
Indias fifth preliminary league match is against the hosts England against whom their overall success rate stands at 44 per cent (won 15, lost 19 and one no result).
Indias record against the founders of the game at home and away is on the negative side (seven wins and nine losses in India for a success rate of 43 per cent, four wins and eight losses in England for a success rate of 33 per cent).
Indias record against England is good only at neutral territories (66 per cent success rate by winning four out of six matches played).
The two teams have met
four times in the World Cup (once each in 1975, 1983,
1987-88 and 1992) and India have lost all the clashes
barring the semi-final match in 1983 by six wickets at
Manchester which was avenged by the Englishmen in the
semi-final at Mumbai four years later.
Azharuddin set to overtake Kapil
MUMBAI, April 27 (PTI) Indian skipper Mohammed Azharuddin is set to overtake Kapil Dev in the number of World Cup appearances as a player and captain when the mega event unfolds on May 14 in England.
Kapil Dev, the victorious 1983 skipper who also led India in the next edition of the World Cup in 1987-88, holds the Indian record jointly with Azharuddin by leading his country in 15 World Cup matches so far.
While Kapil won 11 matches and lost four, Azhar (who was captain in the last two editions in 1992 and 1996 too), has a win-loss record of 6-8 while one match was abandoned.
Azharuddin, who is set to emulate West Indian Clive Lloyd (1975, 1979, 1983) by leading his country in three World Cups when he steps out for the toss with South Africas Hansie Cronje at Hove on May 15, is also on the fringe of lowering another national mark in the mega event for the number of appearances as a player.
Azharuddin, who played under Kapil in the 1987 World Cup hosted jointly by India and Pakistan, has appeared in 22 World Cup matches, four less than the 26 played by Haryana hurricane Kapil.
If Azharuddin plays in all the five preliminary league matches for India in group A, then he would shoot past Kapil Devs aggregate appearances as a player.
The Indian skipper would also be on the look-out for a maiden Cup century, which has eluded him in earlier editions. His best had been a knock of 93 against Australia at Brisbane in 1992.
Only four Indians have made centuries in the World Cup and among these, only master batsman Sachin Tendulkar has reached three figures twice in his 15 appearances.
Tendulkar made 137 and 127 not out against Sri Lanka (at Delhi) and Kenya (at Cuttack) respectively, in the last edition.
The other century makers for India in the World Cup are: Kapil Dev 175 not out against Zimbabwe in 1983 at Trent Bridge. Vinod Kambli 106 against Zimbabwe in 1996 at Kanpur. Sunil Gavaskar 103 not out against New Zealand in 1987 at Nagpur.
A total of 51 hundreds have been scored in the six World Cups with South African Gary Kirstens 188 not out against the United Arab Emirates at Rawalpindi in 1996, being the highest individual score, followed by West Indian Vivian Richards 181 against Sri Lanka at Karachi in 1987.
Leading the list of century makers (three each) are Ramiz Raja (Pakistan), Viv Richards and Mark Waugh (Australia).
Tendulkars aggregate of 806 runs, at an average of 67.16 with two hundreds and six half-centuries, is by far the highest by an Indian in the World Cup.
The Indian ace is nine short of Australian David Boons tally of 815 in 16 matches with two centuries and five fifties and 207 short of Richards all-time record of 1013 from 23 matches (three centuries and five fifties).
Tendulkars total of 523 runs in seven matches in 1996 is also the most by any player in one tournament, ahead of Mark Waughs tally of 484 in the same edition. The Australian, however, is the lone player to have scored more than two hundreds in the same tournament.
Pakistan team leaves with high hopes
ISLAMABAD, April 27 (PTI) "We are on song, the morale is high and every player is looking forward to contribute his best in the World Cup," skipper Wasim Akram said as Pakistan team left without coach Javed Miandad for England today.
Akram, who played a crucial role in Pakistans World Cup triumph in 1992 and vindicated the selectors faith in him with successes after being given the reins again late last year, vowed to do well in the mega event to regain the Cup.
But the crisis-ridden team, which rallied superbly after plumbing the depths with defeats at home and away to win the first-ever Asian Test Championship and two recent triangular tournaments in India and Sharjah, will be without the services of the man behind the show, the six World Cup veteran Miandad.
Miandad resigned controversially last week citing personal reasons amidst reports of a rift between him and the players.
His resignation has yet to be accepted. Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief Khalid Mahmood said the matter would be placed before the boards council meeting on May 1.
Chances of Miandad joining the team later were, however, minimal despite the issue being raised in front of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at a reception hosted for the team.
Admitting that differences between him and the players existed, the former batsman said he would reconsider his decision if the PCB got the players to reconcile.
The former Pakistan skipper and veteran of many a battle told the media he was expecting a call from the PCB officials to find out the truth, but "uptill now no one has contacted me."
He said: "if some senior players dont want me, I dont think it would be in the best interests of the nation (for me) to accompany the team as an unwanted guest.
"It is the players who matter because they have to play on the field. If they are not happy with me I dont want to disturb them."
The dejected coach explaining his resignation said: "I had no other choice as the senior players weren't taking me seriously."
He said: "It seems even the board is not taking me seriously or else they would have asked me to clear my position. But that never happened, which means that even the board wasnt taking me seriously".
Miandad also confirmed media reports that during the meeting with the Prime Minister, veteran opener Saeed Anwar accused him in front of everybody. Miandad, however, did not say what Anwar accused him of.
"He (Saeed Anwar) should not have done this. He must have kept in mind that he was speaking to the Prime Minister and such personal matters should not be discussed on an occasion like this," Miandad said.
The coach also alleged that the complaint before the Prime Minister was planned earlier and that Anwar was asked by someone else to do that.
"I know this was all pre-planned, someone had asked him to do this. But that was unfortunate," Miandad said.
Media reports had said that the issue was raised before the premier in anticipation that Nawaz Sharif being a keen cricket follower would urge Miandad to withdraw his resignation and accompany the team to England.
The team, which left for Birmingham this morning, will take part in a number of warm-up matches before the start of the seventh World Cup on May 14.
Pakistan, placed in group-B along with Australia, West Indies, New Zealand, Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, will open its campaign in the World Cup on May 16 against West Indies at Bristol.
AFP adds: Miandad backed Pakistan as "hot" favourites for the cricket World Cup.
He however, sought to dispel the impression that he had problems with senior players including skipper Wasim Akram, saying "it is time to forget the issue."
"I do not have any problems with any of the players. Otherwise my combination with Wasim and the boys would not have won matches. Even now I will be available to help whenever the boys need me," Miandad told AFP.
"I wish all of you best of luck. And I want to tell you that O will be available any time you need me during the World Cup," he said.
Miandad was confident of the teams talent. "Our team has proved itself to be one of the favourites for the World Cup through its excellent performance in recent times. It has the weaponry of talent and unmatchable experience."
"I think Pakistan has a better chance than South Africa and Australia but they just have to stick to the pattern we set for the World Cup and that is all," he said.
But he warned any new change in strategy could prove disastrous. "I will strictly advise against any new techniques for the team."
"They just have to make sure that they play the full 50 overs. Once they do that and set a respectable total, our bowlers will do the rest," he added.
"Bowlers like Wasim, Saqlain Mushtaq, Shoaib Akhtar, Waqar Younis and Mushtaq Ahmed can bowl the side out twice in 50 overs."
Dutch get taste of hooliganism
AMSTERDAM, April 27 (Reuters) A year before the Euro 2000 Soccer Championships, organisers received a possible taste of things to come as hooligans linked to Rotterdams Feyenoord fought with the police and wrecked the centre of their own city.
Suddenly security has become issue number one for the soccer championships as fans of one co-hosts reasserted their reputation as being among the worst in Europe.
Dutch and Belgian interior ministers met as planned in the southern Dutch town of Bergen-Op-Zoom yesterday to sign a joint security accord. The deal allows the police from both countries to cross their common border and enable the exchange of material during the event in June and July 2000.
But Sundays rioting, accompanied by reports that some rioters were brandishing firearms, has reminded the ministers and their police forces that the hooligan problem is ever present.
Rotterdam, scene of Sundays violence, will serve as the hub of the three-week tournament and host the final. It also has some of the worst fans in the country, responsible for the death of an Ajax fan in 1997, and rumoured already to be planning for next years championships.
Euro 2000 organisers will not wish to see a repeat performance next year. Neither will they want to relive some of the uglier scenes from last years World Cup in France.
There, a German fan clubbed a Gendarme into a coma in Lens and police fought English fans and local youths in Marseille.
Euro 2000 organisers yesterday said they deeply regretted Sundays incidents, but stressed their responsibility was only to ensure public order within the stadiums.
"We are already preparing ourselves. We have of course limited ticket sales to two named persons per game and we are not selling to third parties such as accommodation agencies. We believe this should limit possible blackmarket sales," Euro 2000 spokesman Richard Van Eijk said.
He added all the stadiums would have video cameras.
The greatest chance of violence, however, is outside the stadiums where the ministries of the interior and justice and the local authorities take charge. A national police project Euro 2000 will serve as coordinating body.
"The mayor of each city is ultimately responsible for the security measures, but its also a question of having a whole package of measures to ensure event is a festival and not a scene of violence," an Interior Ministry spokeswoman said.
Dutch and Belgian authorities hope to gain tips about suspected hooligans from their European neighbours, she added. The ticketing strategy is considered one line of defence.
"We can also take preventive measures, such as picking up potential troublemakers in, say, the city centre," she said.
Yesterdays agreement was, she added, aimed at increasing the flexibility and coordination between the separate police forces of Belgium and the Netherlands.
Slaney loses battle against IAAF
LONDON, April 27 (Reuters) Mary Slaney, who conquered the world over both 1,500 and 3,000 metres at the 1983 world championships, lost her protracted doping battle against the world governing body yesterday.
In a statement from its Monaco headquarters, the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) said its arbitration panel had concluded that Slaney had committed a doping offence three years ago.
Slaney, 40, tested positive for excessive levels of the male sex hormone testosterone at the 1996 US Olympic trials.
She has consistently denied taking any banned substances and a fortnight ago filed a lawsuit against both the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) and the US Olympic committee.
The suit accused the IAAF and the USOC of negligence and fraud in the handling of her case.
Slaney was suspended by the IAAF but then cleared to compete by the US governing body USA Track and Field (USATF) in September, 1997.
The IAAF panel said Slaney "was guilty of a doping offence on 17 June 1996 and that the USATFs doping hearing board decision of 16 September 1997 was erroneous".
Slaneys automatic two-year ban has already expired on June 16, 1998, but all results recorded during that period will be erased from the record books.
The finding brings a sorry end to the racing career of the greatest and most graceful woman middle-distance runner ever produced in the USA.
Slaney created a sensation in 1973 when, at the age of 14, she defeated the Olympic 800 metres silver medallist Nijole Sabaite at a meeting between the USA and the Soviet Union.
But, partly through the rigours of an obsessive training regime, she began to suffer from leg injuries and missed the 1976 Montreal Olympics.
An operation on her calf resurrected Slaneys career and she set a world mile record in 1980 but was prevented from running at the Moscow Olympics of that year by the US-led boycott.
In 1982, Slaney set world records over 5,000 and the mile then broke the 10,000 mark in an Aperitif for her finest year.
At the inaugural 1983 world championships in Helsinki, Slaney, running from the front, defeated the seemingly invincible east Europeans in first the 3,000 and then the 1,500.
All seemed in place for further triumphs before an America audience at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics against teenage South African prodigy Zola Budd, competing for Britain after the authorities rushed through British citizenship in time for the games.
In the most dramatic moment of an eventful Olympics, Slaney and Budd collided and the American golden girl fell helpless on the track where she wept inconsolably as Romanian Maricica Puica went on to take the gold.
Injuries again played havoc with Slaneys running and she was never again to rise to the heights of Helsinki, although at the age of 38 she competed in the 1,500 metres final at the 1997 world indoor championships in Paris.
Jeev leap-frogs to 151st spot
NEW DELHI, April 27 (UNI) Jeev Milkha Singh, the lone Indian golfer in the European PGA Tour, jumped 23 spots from previous weeks 174th place to a career-high ranking of 151 according to the world rankings list released yesterday.
The Chandigarh-based professional finished runner-up on Sunday to Korean Choi Kyoung-Ju in the 100-million-yen Kirin Open, sanction event of the Japanese PGA Tour and the Asian Tour, Jeev, who lost in the first hole of playoff, now has an average of 1.21 and 52 points to be among the 27 Asians in the top 200 of the list.
Heading the Asian challenge is Fijian Vijay Singh, a regular on the US PGA Tour and the defending US open champion. The list has 23 Japanese, with Jumbo Ozaki at 14th place with 6.62 points. Apart from Indias Jeev, the list also has Frankie Minoza of the Philippines at 61st place one South Korean, Jong Duck-Kim the Asian PGA Tour results are not counted in the world rankings.
In the world money list, Jeev is expected to break into the top 100 when the list is released today. The 62,500 dollars runner-up cheque will take his seasons earning in the European and Japanese PGA Tour to 192,381 dollars. He was in 128th place last week.
It was a near miss of Jeev as a win in the Kirin Open would have opened up a lot many avenues for this ace golfer. A first place would have ensured he topped the Asian Tours order of merit with the winners cheque of $ 125,000 that would have given him automatic entry into the prestigious British Open, one of the four majors in the world golf, as well as the memorial tournament in the USA in June. More importantly, he would have gained a two-year exemption on the Japanese PGA Tour, which is considered at par with the European PGA Tour.
Jeev, who missed the Peugeot Open De Espana, a European PGA Tour event, in order to participate in the Kirin Open, has dropped to 21st position in the Volvo order of merit with earnings of 111,279 Euros.
Despite the lost opportunity, the 28-year-old was his optimistic self. "The thought of getting a direct entry into the British Open never crossed my mind. But I was very upset when I lost the playoff. However, I firmly believe that bigger and better things are in store for me," said Jeev whose last title win was way back in 1996 when he won the Philip Morris Asia Cup in Korea.
Jeev is in exceptional form this year. After ending last season at 322nd place in the world rankings, he has finished joint third in the season-opening Alfred Dunhill African PGA Championship. Then he went one better with a joint second finish at the Mercedes Benz-Vodacom South African Open, his immediate aim is to get a direct entry into the British Open, one of the four majors of world golf, by remaining high enough in the European PGA Tours Volvo order of merit.
Ricardo Powell replaces Hooper
ST JOHNS (Antigua), April 27 (Reuters) Young Jamaican all-rounder Ricardo Powell has replaced Carl Hooper in the West Indies World Cup squad.
Powell will be making his first appearance in the West Indies squad after playing in the A team and the Board Presidents XI matches against Australia on their recent tour.
West Indies Cricket Board executive secretary Andrew Sealy said the International Cricket Councils technical committee for the World Cup has accepted Powell as replacement for Hooper who retired from international cricket on Sunday.
Punjab Police shooters corner
CHANDIGARH, April 27 The 42nd All-India Police Duty Meet organised by All-India Police Control Board at Bhanu, near here, concluded on April 25. As many as 32 teams representing various central police organisations, BSF, ITBP, SPG, Assam Rifles and various union territories and states participated in various competitions.
Punjab Police retained the overall title the Jayalalitha Trophy by proving to be the best in shooting. Punjab Police had won this trophy for the first time in the All-India Police Duty Meet in 1998.
Inspector Santokh Singh of Punjab Police was declared the 'Best shot of the meet' with a new meet record of 234 points out of a possible 240 points. He was awarded the Home Minister's Medal of the Government of India.
Constable Darshpreet Singh of Punjab Police won the Individual gold in pistol and a silver trophy in 15 yards pistol practice. Constable Darshpreet Singh was also ranked overall third in the meet. Inspector Santokh Singh also won two more individual silver medals in pistol practice 30 yards and 25 yard events. Other noteworthy performances came from Head Constable Avtar Singh, Constable Babbu Masih and Constable Keshav Kumar.
Rajeev to play in England
CHANDIGARH, April 27 Rajeev Nayyer of Himachal Pradesh, who had a fine domestic season this year, has again got a contract to play for Leycett Cricket Club in North Staffs and South Cheshire Cricket Minor County League in England.
In this league he has to play 28 League matches and eight Cup games. This will be Rajeev's sixth visit to England to play in Minor County matches.
In domestic matches in 1998-99 Rajeev was the second highest run-getter in North Zone Ranji matches when he scored 454 with two centuries 118 not out against Haryana and 110 not out against J and K with an average of 58.75. Rajeev was also the second highest scorer in Duleep Trophy matches when he scored 92 against Central Zone and 54 and 48 against South Zone.
Last year in England, Rajiv showed his class in batting as well as bowling. During the League matches, he scored 1,288 runs with an average of 158. This was enough to break the previous record of 113.80 by J. Jervis. In bowling he got 48 wickets, including a hat-trick .
CHANDIGARH, April 27 Flying Sikh Milkha Singh in a gesture of generosity towards the former international Parduman Singh has sent Rs 10,000 to the ailing athlete.
Parduman, a shot putter and a discus thrower had clinched three gold medals in the Asian Games at Manila in 1954, Tokyo (1958) and at Jakarta (1962).
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