SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
S P O R T S



Action time
Tiny Qatar, big show

Doha, December 1
Tiny Qatar stunned the world with a dazzling opening ceremony at the Asian Games that took people through the 5,000-year-old history of Asia and opened a window to the rich and robust culture of the Arabic world.

Members of the Indian contingent march during the opening ceremony of the Asian Games in Doha on Friday
Members of the Indian contingent march during the opening ceremony of the Asian Games in Doha on Friday. — AFP photo

Boxers face uphill task
Doha, December 1
Akhil Kumar and Vijender will spearhead ten-member Indian Boxing team’s challenge in the Asian Games starting here from tomorrow. Indian Coach Venu has pinned his hopes on Akhil and Vijender but he also realises that it is going to be a very tough challenge for his Pugilists.
Akhil Kumar Jitender

Akhil Kumar (left) and Jitender are India’s medal hopefuls in boxing.








Japanese midfielder Miyuki Yanagita dribbles past Jordan’s defender Ruba Adawi during their women’s Group A football match in Doha on Thursday
Japanese midfielder Miyuki Yanagita dribbles past Jordan’s defender Ruba Adawi during their women’s Group A football match in Doha on Thursday. Japan won 13-0. — AFP





EARLIER STORIES




Shooters gunning for glory
Doha, December 1
World Champion Manavjit Sandhu, Olympic silver medallist Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, former world number one Gagan Narang, Commonwealth Champion Samaresh Jung and Olympian Anjali Bhagwat lead the star studded 33-member Indian shooting team’s challenge in the Asian Games starting here tomorrow.

Kullu honoured to be flag bearer
Doha, December 1
Indian women hockey team captain Jyoti Sunita Kullu today said she was really proud and honoured to be selected the flag bearer of country’s contingent at the Opening Ceremony of the Asian Games.

Kabaddi: India seek to retain gold
Doha, December 1
Three-time champions India kick off their campaign to retain their monopoly in kabaddi at the Asian Games here tomorrow wary of the challenge from the much-improved arch-rivals Pakistan and Iran.

Hockey eves can win medal: Coach
Doha, December 1
Promising an improved performance, the Indian women hockey team coach M. K. Kaushik today exuded confidence that the ‘girls will return home from this Asian Games with a medal’.

The Indian women’s hockey team, which won the silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne earlier this year, faces a tougher field at the Asian Games.
The Indian women’s hockey team, which won the silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne earlier this year, faces a tougher field at the Asian Games

India look to sweep chessboard
Doha, December 1
The absence of world number two Viswanathan Anand notwithstanding, the Indian Chess squad looks formidable and seems to have an edge over their rivals when the event, which is being held at the Asian Games for the first time, begins here tomorrow. The top seeds in both men’s and women's sections are from India.

Western flavour
Doha, December 1
Setting a unique trend, an American and an England citizen were allowed to take part in the Asian Games opening ceremony here as part of the group of 31,000 torch-bearers.


India win, at last
Johannesburg, December 1
Dinesh Kaarthick hit a last- over six as India halted their losing streak in South Africa by defeating the hosts by six wickets in their first-ever Twenty20 international clash at the Wanderers today.

Zaheer Khan (centre) celebrates with team-mates on dismissing South African captain Graeme Smith during the Twenty20 match in Johannesburg on Friday. — AFP
photo
Zaheer Khan celebrates with team-mates on dismissing South African captain Graeme Smith during the Twenty20 match in Johannesburg

Pakistan too good for Windies
Win third Test to clinch series 2-0
Karachi, December 1
Pakistan won the third and final Test against the West Indies by 199 runs after leg-spinner Danish Kaneria and pacer Abdul Razzaq took the last four wickets for 17 runs after tea today.


Pakistani cricketers with the series trophy after defeating the West Indies in the third and final Test in Karachi on Friday. — AFP photo
Pakistani cricketers with the series trophy after defeating the West Indies in the third and final Test in Karachi on Friday

England prosper on day one
Adelaide, December 1
Kevin Pietersen won his battle with Shane Warne as England escaped from Australia’s clutches onto a sound position on the opening day of the second Ashes Test at Adelaide Oval today.

Love Ablish sends Gujarat packing
Mohali, December 1
Bhavik Thakar emerged saviour for Gujarat as the visitors posted a reasonable total in their Super League (Elite group B) Ranji Trophy match against Punjab. Middle order batsman Thakar notched up a valuable 85 as Gujarat were bowled out for 208 on the first day of the four-day match at the PCA Stadium here today.

Jeev in joint lead
Tokyo, December 1
Jeev Milkha Singh looks simply irresistible and the Indian soared to grab a share of the lead with a flawless second round of five-under 65 in the season-ending Golf Nippon Series JT Cup at the Tokyo Yomiuri Country Club here today.

 


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Action time
Tiny Qatar, big show

Torch-bearers parade during the opening ceremony of the 15th Asian Games at the Khalifa Stadium in Doha on Friday
Torch-bearers parade during the opening ceremony of the 15th Asian Games at the Khalifa Stadium in Doha on Friday. — Reuters

Doha, December 1
Tiny Qatar stunned the world with a dazzling opening ceremony at the Asian Games that took people through the 5,000-year-old history of Asia and opened a window to the rich and robust culture of the Arabic world.

True to its boast, Doha put up a show that was opulent in scale, magnificent in its imagery and perfect in precision with lilting music and flamboyant costumes. And if the opening ceremony was any indication, then the 15-day Asian Games could be the best ever seen.

The event, watched by 50,000 persons at the iconic Khalifa Stadium and followed by a television audience of three billion worldwide, was infused with symbolism of hope for the future.

Lasting three hours and 20 minutes and produced and directed by David Atkins, the man responsible for the spectacular Sydney Olympics opening ceremony, it easily lived up to to the boast that it would be the most technologically advanced ceremony ever held to herald a sporting extravaganza.

The ceremony began with the arrival of Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the Emir of Qatar. Flares were ignited to convey the traditional Arabic welcome “Al Salam Alaikom” as a massed pyrotechnic display formed the Qatari flag in the sky.

The Qatari Flag was raised followed by the playing of the national anthem in which the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra joined in. Guangzhou (China) will host the next Asian Games.

The crowd was then treated to a variety of entertainment programmes depicting different themes based on the Arab heritage before the participating countries entered the arena in alphabetical order with the hosts bring off the rear.

The Indians, who had hockey player Jyoti Sunita Kullu as the flag-bearer, entered the stadium after Hong Kong attired in traditional headgears and blue blazers amidst cheers from the spectators.

Indian playback singer Sunidhi Chauhan also had her share of the spotlight as she sang “Reach Out” — a tribute to the Asian Games family immediately after all the teams had taken up their positions at the centre.

It was followed by children releasing “doves of peace”as a gesture of world peace and Olympic spirit.

The games were then officially declared open after speeches by the top members of the Doha Asian Games Organising Committee.

The orchestra played the Olympic Council of Asia hymn and the OCA flag was carried into the stadium. The flags of the OCA and Qatar were hoisted before the ceremonial oath was taken on behalf of all competitors.

After a 55-day journey of over 500,000 km through 15 Asian countries — the longest torch relay in the history of the Asian Games — the flame of the Doha Games entered the stadium.

Five Qatari athletes carried it around the stadium before the cauldron was lit.

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Dr Jacques Rogge was the guest of honour. And organisers of the games, who have made no secret of their desire to host the 2016 Olympics at Doha, will be hoping that IOC chief was paying attention to exactly what a small, yet ambitious Gulf nation can achieve.

More than 13,000 athletes from 45 Asian nations are taking part in the games that are being held for the first time in the Arab world.

And before the competitions begin in right earnest, they were given a visual treat. The cultural part of the ceremony started with life at sea on a sambuq, a traditional lateen-sailed wooden boat. It then moved on to an Asian caravan journey in the Wonders of Asia segment. In this segment alone, 6,500 costumes representing Asia from India to China to Kazakhstan were used.

And the overlying theme was the quest for the Astrolabe, spherically-shaped ancient Arabian navigational instrument considered to be man’s first navigational computing device.

But before that journey through Asia began with a pulsating atom exploding out of the void, releasing light in all directions.

A ray of light passed through universes, panning around the globe starting from Japan, Korea, the Philippines over a topographical map showing major cities and landmarks of Asia 100 years ago crossing India and Central Asia until it reached Qatar.

A Golden Falcon flew across the screen reaching Old Doha long before the discovery of oil.

The journey of the ceremony was led by a boy who becomes a man and finally finds the Astrolabe. — UNI, PTI

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Boxers face uphill task

Doha, December 1
Akhil Kumar and Vijender will spearhead ten-member Indian Boxing team’s challenge in the Asian Games starting here from tomorrow.
Indian Coach Venu has pinned his hopes on Akhil and Vijender but he also realises that it is going to be a very tough challenge for his Pugilists.

The Indians failed to win a medal in the last edition of the games in Busan and the prospects appear bleak again though Akhil Kumar, who has done reasonably well in his 54 kg weight category, will be the best medal bet for the Indian contingent but whether he can deliver the goods at this level remains to be seen.

The Indians have fielded a ten-member team for the games but the Government shot down the list to six on the ground that four of the boxers had no prospects of winning a medal.

The Indian Amateur Boxing Federation decided to bear the cost of the four boxers — Sanjay Kolte, Diwakar Prasad, Manoj and Dilbagh Singh.

The draw for the various weight categories have not yet been announced but the Indians, who also have a foreign coach in I Fernandes, know that it is going to be tough.

Boxing promises to live up to its billing as one of the top sports at the Games given the rich talent on display that includes many Olympic medalists.

South Korea is the most successful team in Asiad boxing, having won 56 gold medals and 101 in total, but it is the boxing powerhouses from central Asia and Thailand that are expected to dominate here.

Eleven gold medals are at stake in as many different weight categories.

The Thais are pinning their hopes on a rejuvenated Manus Boonjumnong, the Olympic light-welterweight champion, to lead his country to a sweep of golds. Olympic bantamweight silver medallist Worapoj Petchkoom and Olympic middleweight bronze medallist Suriya Prasathinphimai are among a formidable Thai team of eight boxers which also includes flyweight veteran Somjit Jongjohor, who won Thailand's lone gold medal at the last Asian Games four years ago in Busan.

While the lower weight division might be dominated by Thailand, it is Kazakhstan, which dominated the Asian Junior Boxing Championships last month taking seven of the 11 gold on offer, that is also likely to impress.

The Kazakh squad features Bakhityar Artayev, the current Olympic welterweight champion who was also named the tournament's outstanding boxer for his run to the final in Athens. Artayev will face some stiff opposition from Pakistan's Nisar Khan, a boxer whom experts have predicted will push for gold at the Beijing Games.

Other Kazakh medal contenders include 2005 world champions Yerdos Janabergenov (light-heavyweight) and Serik Sapiyev (light-welterweight). Hopes lie with 20-year-old flyweight Mirat Sarsembayev and 2005 world bronze medallist Bakhyt Sarasekbayev, who won light-welterweight bronze in Busan and welterweight gold in the 2005 Asian championships.

Pakistan also has Asghar Ali Shah, the 2005 Asian light-welterweight champion and Busan silver medallist, and Nauman Karim, who won flyweight gold at the 2004 Asian championships.

Pakistan, however received a setback when two of their star campaigners were banned for six months after testing positive for cannabis. Meherullah Lassi, who won a gold medal in the 2002 Asian Games at Busan and Commonwealth silver in March this year, and Faisal Kareem, both failed drug tests during the SAF in Colombo, in August.

Other challengers will come from mostly Central Asian Countries and from Jordan, Syria, Iran and Iraq.

Team: Jitender (51 kg), Akhil Kumar (54 kg), Jay Bhagwan(58 kg), Virender (75 kg), Harpreet Singh (91 kg), V Johnson (91 kg), Sanjay Kolte (48 kg), Diwakar Prasad (57 kg), Manoj (64 KG) and Dilbagh Singh. Chief coach: M Venu, foreign coach: I Fernandes. — UNI

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Shooters gunning for glory

Crack squad

Men (pistol): Pemba Tamang, Vijay Kumar, Rahul Panwar, Ronak Pandit, Jaspal Rana, Samresh Jung, Deepak Sharma, Bapu Vanjare and Zakir Khan. Rifle: Sanjeev Rajput, Gagan Narang, Imran Hasan Khan, Navnath Farthate, PT Raghunath, Surendra Singh Rathore, Sushil Ghaley, Ronjon Sodhi, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Vikram Bhatnagar, Mansher Singh, Manavjit Singh Sandhu, Anwer Sultan, AD People, Mairaj Ahmed Khan and Man Singh

Women (pistol): Sonia Rai, Harveen Sarao and Shweta Chaudhary. Rifle: Avneet Kaur Sidhu, Suma Shirur, Tejaswini Samant, Anjali Bhagwat and Deepali Deshpande. 

Doha, December 1
World Champion Manavjit Sandhu, Olympic silver medallist Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, former world number one Gagan Narang, Commonwealth Champion Samaresh Jung and Olympian Anjali Bhagwat lead the star studded 33-member Indian shooting team’s challenge in the Asian Games starting here tomorrow.

Though India has won only two gold medals in shooting in the Asian Games history so far but the shooters are hoping to bring back a rich haul of medals for the country from this tiny Arab nation.

In the last Asian Games at Busan, India had won only two silver medals — in trap team and women’s 10m air rifle events — but the situation has changed dramatically since then.

Manavjit Sandhu
Manavjit Sandhu

The Indian shooters’ tremendous showing at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games earlier this year and their subsequent performances in the World Championship in Zagreb has raised the hopes of the country breaking the jinx of not winning an Asiad Gold since Hiroshima 1994 where Jaspsal Rana had bagged a centre fire pistol Gold.

Given the strength and form of the shooting squad, the country can hope of at least a couple of gold in this Asiad. On show tomorrow will be Manvjit Sandhu and Mansher Singh (Trap) Gagan Narang (air rifle) and Avneet Kaur Sandhu (women air rifle).

Coach Sunny Thomas was very cautious and modest in his assessment of the team.

“The field here is very tough, much tougher than what we had in Melbourne,” he pointed out.

He, however, was of the view that the team would win at least five medals in this edition.

After the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne in March — where India bagged 16 gold, seven silver and four bronze medals — the shooters have done considerably well in international meets.

Ace rifle shooter Abhinav Bindra became the first Indian to win a gold in the World Championship in Zagreb but he has opted out of the Asian Games due to a back injury. Manavjit Sandhu also won a trap gold, while Navnath Farthate became the second shooter after Jaspal Rana to win the gold in the junior category of the championship. In the absence of Abhinav, Gagan Narang — after his superb showing in Melbourne and a gold medal in the World Cup in China — starts favourite.

“In the Commonwealth Games, it was (comparatively) easy because the top teams like China, South Korea and Japan didn’t take part.

India’s foreign pistol coach, Hungary’s Csaba Gyorik, meanwhile, was hoping for a gold Jaspal Rana in the rapid-fire pistol.

“I can’t say about other pistol shooters, but I believe that Rana has the potential to win a medal,” Thomas said.

Rifle coach Laszlo Szucsak felt the women also had the potential to win medals. “We have a good women’s team and the likes of Anjali, Suma, Deepali have the experience. And if they click in the team event we can win the gold this time,” he said.

There are 27 gold — 12 individual and 15 in team events — at stake in the shooting competition. — UNI

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Kullu honoured to be flag bearer

Jyoti Sunita Kullu
Jyoti Sunita Kullu

Doha, December 1
Indian women hockey team captain Jyoti Sunita Kullu today said she was really proud and honoured to be selected the flag bearer of country’s contingent at the Opening Ceremony of the Asian Games.

A visibly thrilled Jyoti said, “It is a huge honour. I am very proud that I am being given the honour to lead the Indian contingent in the opening ceremony.

“I never thought in my dreams that I will be bestowed with this honour, because I have been playing and representing the country for the last eleven years and I have not received any award at the district level, leave alone the National level.”

“But now I think this is the big honour, it is a big achievement for me, it is bigger then even Arjuna Award,” the Indian captain said.

“I have been performing very well at the national and International level,” said the 28-year-old Railway employee, who has represented the country in 172 matches but added, “It hurts when you are ignored for award or not given recognition.” “But I think it is all part of the game and destiny. Now I feel better to lead country’s best sportspersons at the International arena.”

“It is also big honour for me because I am the first women hockey player, who will be the flag bearer of the country at this level of the games.” Jyoti also promised that her team will perform better in the competition, saying “we have learnt from our mistakes at the World Cup and I am confident that the girls will give a much better and high level performance here.”

She agreed that it is going to be tough. “But that is bound to be because every team comes here well prepared to bring glory for their country.” She admitted that the main challenge will come from Korea and China while Japan is also a very strong contender. — UNI

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Kabaddi: India seek to retain gold

Doha, December 1
Three-time champions India kick off their campaign to retain their monopoly in kabaddi at the Asian Games here tomorrow wary of the challenge from the much-improved arch-rivals Pakistan and Iran.

Although the Indians start as clear favourites to win the coveted gold medal, the team is not prepared to take their opponents lightly and is keen to maintain their stranglehold.

The holders will launch their campaign against lowly Bangladesh in the first round-robin league match at the Aspire Sports Centre before they take on Japan in the second match tomorrow evening.

With the gap in standards narrowing down over the years, the Indians have worked out some new strategies to counter their relatively stronger opponents like Pakistan and Iran.

“We are not taking any team lightly at this level. We have to play well in all the matches to win the gold medal again. The players have worked very hard and we are looking forward to the competition,” Indian coach Balwan Singh said.

The tournament will be held on a round-robin basis with the two top teams making it to the final of the five-team event.

Navneet Gautam, one of the key players in the Indian team, said there was no reason why Indian should not win the gold medal again.

“Our game is very good, very powerful and skillful and the other teams have to really play well to beat us.”

Gautam considered Pakistan and Iran as the two teams who could pose some problems for the Indians.

“Pakistan has a very powerful game and Iran players are very good. Their speed is good and we have to watch out for that.” Another Indian player Pankaj Shirsat said the team was aiming to win the gold medal and would leave no stone unturned to return home winners.

“We have a good history and are working hard. In sport, anything can happen and we have to be careful when we play against Pakistan and Iran. These are the two teams who are capable of springing a surprise.” — PTI

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Hockey eves can win medal: Coach

Doha, December 1
Promising an improved performance, the Indian women hockey team coach M. K. Kaushik today exuded confidence that the ‘girls will return home from this Asian Games with a medal’.

Though the women hockey tournament in the Asiad starts from tomorrow, India will play their first match against Chinese Taipei on December 3.

In the seven-nation tournament to be played on round-robin basis, the other teams are Korea, China, Japan, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

Kaushik was fully aware of his team’s weak points and was candid enough to admit that China, Korea and Japan are going to be very tough rivals to deal with.

“I know that the field is very strong but my players are also ready for the big challenge and we are certain to get a medal this time,” he said.

India had finished a lowly 11th in the 12-nation World Cup held in Madrid in September but Kaushik was unfazed by the poor show.

“Look we lost some matches there very narrowly, which we should have won. But now I think players have worked on their mistakes which they committed in the World Cup and I hope that things will be different here,” he said.

The coach claimed that India dominated most of the matches at Madrid but loosened the grip at crucial junctures to lose the games.

“We dominated several matches but on crucial moments we let go the advantage and that is what I hope will not happen here,” he elaborated.

Kaushik said the players have been repeatedly watching the video of their World Cup matches to find out their grey areas and have been working on their weaknesses.

“We have a very balanced side and I believe that performance of the team will be very good this time,” he said, adding, “We have worked on our penalty corners and defence. I know that our penalty corner conversion is not very good.” The coach underlined the need of defending the goal and the lead in the later stages of the game saying, “Most of the time we allow the rivals to get away in the dying moments of the game. We tend to get a bit casual after dominating the proceedings and this habit has to be kicked out,” he opined.

“We are working on set pieces inside the 16 yards. Most of the time rivals have taken advantage and we are looking to improve on this area,” he said. Kaushik admitted that there were lot of areas which needed improvement but asserted that the Indian team remained a strong medal contender. — UNI

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India look to sweep chessboard

Doha, December 1
The absence of world number two Viswanathan Anand notwithstanding, the Indian Chess squad looks formidable and seems to have an edge over their rivals when the event, which is being held at the Asian Games for the first time, begins here tomorrow.
The top seeds in both men’s and women's sections are from India.

Krishnan Sasikiran and P Harikrishna with 2,675 and 2,674 Elo points are the top stars, with former FIDE World champion Rustam Kasimdhzanov of Uzbekistan the next in line.

Among women, Koneru Humpy, the numero uno in under-20 category and number two in the world, starts favourite for the title where her main rival could be Zhu Chen, a former Chinese World Cup winner, who now plays for Qatar having married a Qatari player Mohammed AL-Modiakhi.

The chess competition will have three gold medals, with one each in men’s and women’s rapid events to be fought over nine rounds and a mixed team event where teams will have two men and one woman. — UNI

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Western flavour

Doha, December 1
Setting a unique trend, an American and an England citizen were allowed to take part in the Asian Games opening ceremony here as part of the group of 31,000 torch-bearers.

In Asia’s biggest quadrennial sports festival, 22-year-old Rachel Krom from Orlando, Florida, participated in the 300m event at the Qatar Sports Club, a day before 24-year-old Chris Platts of England ran at Al-Arabi Sports Club yesterday.

Both the non-Asians are connected with the organisation of the games as transport member staff, according to the games official website.

Rachel had to undergo a torch-bearers’ training course ahead of the actual relay and said she was worried whether the torch would be too heavy for her to carry.

“I was worried if the torch would be too heavy or something, I don’t have anything around the house that weighs actually that much. I think I attempted it on a treadmill, picking up something that weighs around 2kg.” “For a while I really got into it, I was going to paint my shoes red and put red ribbons in my hair. Then I thought about the wind, my hair would probably catch fire... I think I’ll still go with it, but with flameproof ribbons!” She said that she was worried whether she would look good during the torch relay. — PTI

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India win, at last

Johannesburg, December 1
Dinesh Kaarthick hit a last- over six as India halted their losing streak in South Africa by defeating the hosts by six wickets in their first-ever Twenty20 international clash at the Wanderers today.

India needed nine runs off the last over when Kaarthick (31 not out) pulled spinner Robin Peterson over mid- wicket for a six to virtually seal a thrilling victory and then hit the winning run.

India made 127 for four in 19.5 overs after restricting South Africa, who opted to bat, to a modest 126 for nine.

This was the visitors’ first victory of the tour so far after having conceded an unassailable 3-0 lead to the hosts in the five-match one-day series.

The main contributors in the successful Indian run chase were stand-in skipper Virender Sehwag (34 off 29 balls), Dinesh Mongia (38 off 45) and Kaarthick (31 in 28).

Earlier, Zaheer Khan and Ajit Agarkar claimed two wickets each to put brakes on the South African batsmen.

Scoreboard

South Africa

Smith lbw Zaheer 16

Bosman c Tendulkar b Zaheer 1

Gibbs c Raina b Agarkar 7

Kemp lbw Tendulkar 22

De Villiers c Dhoni b Agarkar 6

Morkel c Mongia b Sreesanth 27

Van der Wath c Raina b Harbhajan 21

Peterson run out 8

Henderson run out 0

Telemachus not out 5

Langeveldt not out 0

Extras (lb-4, w-8, nb-1) 13

Total (9 wkts, 20 overs) 126

Fall of wickets: 1-19, 2-31, 3-34, 4-41, 5-64, 6-101, 7-120, 8-120, 9-123.

Bowling: Zaheer 4-0-15-2, Sreesanth 4-0-33-1, Agarkar 2.3-1-10-2, Pathan 4-0-30-0, Tendulkar 2.3-0-12-1, Harbhajan 3-0-22-1.

India

Sehwag run out 34

Tendulkar b Langeveldt 10

Mongia c Langeveldt b Peterson 38

Dhoni b Langeveldt 0

Kaarthick not out 31

Raina not out 3

Extras (lb-7, w-3, nb-1) 11

Total (4 wkts, 19.5 overs) 127

Fall of wickets: 1-17, 2-60, 3-71, 4-108.

Bowling: Van der Wath 4-0-18-0, Langeveldt 4-0-20-2, Telemachus 4-0-28-0, Henderson 4-0-31-0, Morkel 2-0-12-0, Peterson 1.5-0-11-1. — PTI

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Pakistan too good for Windies
Win third Test to clinch series 2-0

Karachi, December 1
Pakistan won the third and final Test against the West Indies by 199 runs after leg-spinner Danish Kaneria and pacer Abdul Razzaq took the last four wickets for 17 runs after tea today.

West Indies set an improbable victory target of 444 were dismissed for 244 in 76 overs with Kaneria (3-69) and Razzaq (2-23) cleaning up the lower order in 69 balls.

The win gave Pakistan a 2-0 victory in the three-match series after they took the first match in Lahore by nine wickets and the second in Multan ended in a high-scoring draw.

The Test was dominated by scoring-machine Mohammad Yousuf who had innings of 102 and 124 and notched his ninth hundred of the year while setting a record for most runs in a calendar year, 1,788.

Pakistan made 304 in the first innings and bowled out West Indies for 260 and then set them difficult target by declaring on 399 for six. The visitors suffered major setbacks in the second over after tea after resuming on 226 for five.

Kaneria first trapped Shivnarine Chanderpaul leg before for a well-grafted 69 and next ball had Daren Powell caught at forward short leg by Younis Khan. Razzaq then took the last two wickets, trapping Jerome Taylor and Corey Collymore leg before to complete his 100 wickets in tests.

Scoreboard

Pakistan (1st innings) 304

West Indies (1st innings) 260

Pakistan (2nd innings) 399-6

West Indies (2nd innings)

Gayle b Gul 2

Ganga b Nazir 2

Lara c Malik b Gul 49

Sarwan retired hurt 35

Chanderpaul lbw Kaneria 69

Morton c&b Kaneria 16

Bravo c Younis b Nazir 26

Ramdin not out 25

Powell c Younis b Kaneria 0

Taylor lbw Razzaq 1

Collymore lbw Razzaq 0

Extras (b-9, lb-5, nb-5) 19

Total ( 9 wkts, 76 overs) 244

FoW: 1-2, 2-17, 3-97, 4-126, 5-183, 6-227, 7-227, 8-236, 9-244.

Bowling: Gul 19-2-89-2, Nazir 18-6-49-2, Kaneria 26-6-69-3, Malik 1-1-0-0, Razzaq 12-5-23-2. — Reuters

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England prosper on day one

Adelaide, December 1
Kevin Pietersen won his battle with Shane Warne as England escaped from Australia’s clutches onto a sound position on the opening day of the second Ashes Test at Adelaide Oval today.

Paul Collingwood was poised for a century and Pietersen hoisted a lusty six over long-on off Warne in a hustling century stand for the tourists, fighting back after their punishing 277-run defeat in the first Test at the Gabba.

England were 266 for three at stumps. Collingwood followed on from his 96 in Brisbane to be unbeaten on 98 and Pietersen was on 60, after Andrew Flintoff won the toss.

The pair rattled an unbroken 108 runs for the fourth wicket in just 115 minutes.

Amid cautious field placements and curious bowling preferences by skipper Ricky Ponting, England wriggled out of Australia’s grip in the final session with Stuart Clark under-bowled despite taking two wickets in the morning.

Scoreboard

England (Ist innings)

Strauss c Martyn b Clark 14

Cook c Gilchrist b Clark 27

Bell c and b Lee 60

Collingwood not out 98

Pietersen not out 60

Extras (lb-1, nb-6) 7

Total (3 wkts, 90 overs) 266

Fall of wickets: 1-32, 2-45, 3-158.

Bowling: Lee 20-1-77-1, McGrath 18-3-51-0, Clark 15-3-25-2, Warne 27-6-85-0, Clarke 10-1-27-0. — AFP

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Love Ablish sends Gujarat packing
Gopal Sharma
Tribune New Service

Mohali, December 1
Bhavik Thakar emerged saviour for Gujarat as the visitors posted a reasonable total in their Super League (Elite group B) Ranji Trophy match against Punjab. Middle order batsman Thakar notched up a valuable 85 as Gujarat were bowled out for 208 on the first day of the four-day match at the PCA Stadium here today.

Love Ablish, who shared the new ball with Gagandeep Singh, was the most successful Punjab seamer with a five-wicket haul. At close, Punjab were 25 without loss.

On a cold and wintry day, the wicket played true to reputation. Seamers extracted good bounce and pace from the track, keeping the batsmen circumspect. Playing only his fifth Ranji Trophy match, Ablish bowled well throughout.

He was well rewarded as he completed his first five-wicket haul in the domestic championship. In the last match against Bengal, he had claimed five wickets in two innings in a low-scoring game.

Ishan Malhotra, who replaced V. R. V. Singh in the match, chipped in with the crucial wickets of skipper Parthiv Patel and Bhavin Thakar.

Put in, Gujarat were in all sorts of trouble as soon they started the innings. Bowling a controlled spell, Ablish snapped both the openers, having them caught behind.

Ishan Malhotra then dealt a crucial blow, sending former India wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel back to the pavilion when the batsman was on five. Two Patels — Timil and Niraj — then strung together a 44-run stand for the fourth wicket, the highest of the innings, and took the score to 67 before the former was castled by offie Rajesh.

No. 6 batsman Bhavin Thakur then took hold of one end. His ninth-wicket stand worth 39 runs with Hitesh enabled Gujarat get past the 200-run mark. Thakar was caught at extra cover off Malhotra. His 85-run knock included 13 hits to the fence.

Scoreboard

Gujarat (1st innings)

Modi c Dharmani b Ablish 11

Akash c Gaurav b Ablish 5

Timil b Rajesh 13

Parthiv lbw Malhotra 5

Niraj lbw Ablish 29

Bhavik c Kaul b Malhotra 85

Kirat b Ablish 8

Hemal c Dharmani b Gagandeep 24

Ashraf Makda run our 0

Hitesh c Gaurav b Ablish 14

Amit not out 0

Extras ( nb-10, lb-4) 14

Total (all out, 75.5 overs) 208

Fall of wickets: 1-12, 2-18, 3-23, 4-67, 5-83, 6-105, 7-136, 8-163, 9-202.

Bowling: Gagandeep 16-7-20-1, Ablish 18-4-40-5, Malhotra 15.5-4-50-2, Sodhi 7-1-35-0, Rajesh 18-1-49-1, Goel 1-0-10-0.

Punjab (1st innings)

Ricky batting 11

Goel batting 9

Extras (nb-1, lb-4) 5

Total (12 overs) 25

Bowling: Makda 5-1-9-0, Majumdar 3-0-11-0, Amit 3-2-1-0, Damani 1-1-0-0. 

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Jeev in joint lead

Tokyo, December 1
Jeev Milkha Singh looks simply irresistible and the Indian soared to grab a share of the lead with a flawless second round of five-under 65 in the season-ending Golf Nippon Series JT Cup at the Tokyo Yomiuri Country Club here today.

After rounds of 67 and 65, the Indian shares the halfway lead at eight-under 132, along with Shingo Katayama (66) and Hiroyuki Fujita (67). — UNI

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