|Monday, February 28, 2000,
Punjab, Baroda settle for draw
IAAF considering changes in rules
Mukesh wins third title of season
win judo titles
De Silva puts Lanka in command
RAWALPINDI, Feb 27 (AFP) Experienced batsman Aravinda de Silva hit a dazzling century as Sri Lanka took control on the second day of the first cricket Test against Pakistan here today.
The 34-year-old made a fine 112 to put his team in the driving seat, with a valuable lead of 108 runs.
De Silva and former captain Arjuna Ranatunga put on 129 for the fifth wicket. Ranatunga made a polished 49.
The reputed batsman from Colombo recorded his 18th hundred in his 80th Test, his eighth against Pakistan. De Silvas innings lasted 376 minutes and 276 balls, punctuated by 12 boundaries.
Resuming at 58 for two, Sri Lanka lost Russel Arnold for 26 when he flicked a Waqar Younis delivery into wicketkeeper Moin Khans hands.
Mahela Jayawardene during his 42-run innings helped De Silva add 48 for the fourth wicket.
Jayawardene was ruled run out by television umpire after he was sent back and failed to regain the crease.
To the home teams misery, pacer Wasim Akram was ruled out of the match due to groin injury after bowling only 13 deliveries yesterday.
Team doctor Riaz Ahmed said Wasim will miss the next Test as well and stands only an outside chance of playing the final Test starting in Karachi from March 12.
At lunch Sri Lanka were 133 for four.
Ranatunga benefited from a dropped chance by keeper Moin Khan. He snicked his third ball off Razzak but Khan failed to hold on to an easy catch.
Both veteran batsmen who did not feature on their teams Zimbabwe tour and their rout of Pakistan in the one-day series, defied scorching sun and lacklustre Pakistan attack.
De Silva completed his century in 354 minutes, hitting 11 fours while Ranatungas 49 had four boundaries.
Sri Lanka did not lose a wicket in the second session adding 76 runs with De Silva playing his characteristic shots off the leg and straight drives.
They posted the 100 of the stand in 164 minutes. Their 129 is the new Sri Lankan record against Pakistan beating the 125-run stand Ranatunga and Hashan Tillekeratne scored in the Peshawar Test in 1995-96.
Pakistan hit back after taking the second new ball in the 90th over when Razzak bowled Ranatunga.
The very next ball Razzak trapped Romesh Kaluwitharana for nought.
Off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq took two wickets at 280, trapping a tired looking De Silva.
Waqar Younis was the most successful Pakistan bowler with three for 71. Razzak and Saqlain took two wickets apiece.
Pakistan will look to its batsmen on day three to save them from another home humiliation.
Pakistan (Ist innings): 182
Sri Lanka (Ist innings):
Atapattu c Wasti b Waqar Younis 8
Jayasuriya c Moin b Waqar Younis 17
Arnold c Moin b Waqar Younis 26
De Siva lbw b Saqlain Mushtaq 112
Jayawardene run out 42
Ranatunga b Abdur Razzak 49
Kaluwitharana lbw b Abdur Razzak 0
Vaas not out 21
Wickremasinghe c sub
(Afridi) b Saqlain Mushtaq 0
Zoysa not out 6
Extras (lb7, nb2) 9
Total (for 8 wkts, 104 overs) 290
Fall of wickets: 1-9, 2-38, 3-69, 4-117, 5-246, 6-246, 7-280, 8-280.
Punjab, Baroda settle for draw
SAS NAGAR, Feb 27 Reetinder Sodhi scored an unbeaten century as the four-day Ranji Trophy super league match between Punjab and Baroda fizzled out into a draw at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium here today.
Reetinder scored 114, his third century in his 18th match in the national championship, while dependable middle order batsman Pankaj Dharmani made 67 as Punjab in their second innings chasing 139-run first innings lead were 274 for four when the match was called off after seven mandatory overs had been bowled.
In fact, much of the competitive interest in the match had been lost when Baroda before being all out nearly half an hour before the tea break yesterday for 384 took a sizeable lead. Thereafter, for Punjab it was only a matter of batting cautiously and averting an outright defeat. And the hosts batsmen showed greater urgency and application in the second innings and succeeded admirably in the task.
Resuming from their overnight score of 84 for one they received an early jolt when skipper Vikram Rathore was castled by medium fast bowler Rakesh Patel when the batsman had yet to start his scoring for the day.
There were no further alarms for Punjab as Dharmani and Reetinder both looked assured and batted with confidence. Batting well they contributed 122 runs for the third-wicket partnership, taking the team to a position of safety.
Dharmani batted for 231 minutes and faced 175 balls, despatching nine of them to the boundary before being flummoxed by Ajit Bhoite after the Patiala lad compiled 67.
A tentative Mongia was done in by off-spinner R. Swaroop.
Yuveraj Singh, who came in to bat next, played same powerful strokes and remained unbeaten on 31 when the final days play was called off. Reetinder also remained unbeaten on 114. His useful knock was studded with 14 fours and one six.
Baroda have got five points from this match on the basis of the first innings lead, while Punjab will have to be content with only three. Barodas tally has reached 18 points from three outings, while Punjab have eight points from two matches.
Punjab will take on Bihar from March 4 at the same venue.
Punjab (Ist innings): 245
Baroda (Ist innings): 384
Punjab (IInd innings): Rathore b Rakesh Patel 46, Ravneet lbw Zaheer Khan 2, Reetinder not out 114, Pankaj c Milap Mevada b Ajit Bhoite 67, Mongia c Badede b R.Swaroop 0, Yuveraj not out 31.
Extras (nb 6, lb 6, b 2): 14
Total (for four wickets in 115 overs): 274
Fall of wickets: 1-12, 2-91, 3-213, 4-214
Bowling: Zaheer Khan 17-1-63-1, Rakesh Patel 31-9-67-1, Valmic Buch 41-15-81-0, R. Swaroop 17-2-35-1, Ajit Bhoite 9-0-20-1.
Selectors face tough task
BRIDGETOWN, Feb 27 (AFP) Brian Lara has abdicated as captain of the West Indies cricket side, leaving a huge void.
The question now is: Who will inherit the poisoned chalice?
Lara, the gifted left-hander from Trinidad and Tobago, resigned from the post of captain on Thursday. He became the third international captain and second this week to resign, following similar actions by Pakistans Wasim Akram and Indias Sachin Tendulkar.
Laras decision has plunged the West Indies into a search for a suitable replacement to lead the side during the forthcoming home series against Zimbabwe and Pakistan.
The selection panel comprising chairman Mike Findlay, Joel Garner and Joey Carew assemble in St Vincent on March 7 to nominate Laras successor and it will not be an easy job.
There are too many glaring limitations stacked up against many of the possible contenders and the West Indies might find themselves in the long run wondering if Laras decision was the correct one.
It would not be a total surprise if veteran fast bowler Courtney Walsh was again asked to play a role which has become all too familiar for him and was appointed caretaker captain once more.
At age of 37, Walsh is in the twilight of a remarkable career which started in 1984. Though he is quite capable, the WICB also decide against burdening him with the job while chasing the record for the most wickets in Tests (434) held by Indias Kapil Dev.
Jimmy Adams, the vice-captain to New Zealand, where the West Indies lost all two Tests and five limited-overs internationals, is the front-runner for the post if the selectors decide against Walsh.
A long-standing member of the side, he has all the qualifications to do an admirable job, but a lack of form and confidence makes Adams place in the side tenuous.
There has been quiet lobbying, also, for opening batsman Sherwin Campbell. He too, has struggled with his form and technique, but, like Lara, he has been groomed for the position from his youth.
The quiet, unassuming left-hander Shivnarine Chanderpaul is also being proposed. He was appointed captain of his native Guyana during the Busta Cup West Indies first-class championship, but did not exhibit the kind of tactical onus which is needed at the international level.
Wicketkeeper/batsman Ridley Jacobs also has support. He too, is a level-headed cricketer and showed good leadership skills when deputising as Leoward islands captain for the injured Stuart Williams in the Busta Cup.
An outsider with
support, particularly in his native Barbados, is Philo
Wallace. He has exhibited great leadership skills in the
three seasons he has captained his island, but he is not
a regular member of the side and might be ruled out on
Mumbai manage last-over win
NEW DELHI, Feb 27 (PTI) Mumbai prised out the last wicket in the final possible over of the match to inflict a huge 310-run defeat on Delhi and virtually seal their knockout berth, sending the losers almost out of reckoning in a group a Ranji Trophy Super League cricket match here today.
Delhi, overnight 41 for none in their second innings after Mumbai set them an impossible victory target of 501 on the final day, were bowled out for 190 in the 16th over in the final hour of play at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground.
The hosts, reduced to 124 for seven in the 13th over after lunch, almost escaped with a draw after stubborn tailend efforts by Ashish Nehra, who was unbeaten on 3 after batting for 162 minutes and 136 balls.
Regular opener Ashu Dani, coming in at number eight owing to a shoulder injury, defied the Mumbai attack to top-score with 47 (98 m, 86 b, 6 x 4, 1 x 6) and add 51 runs in 25.1 overs with a resolute Nehra.
Delhi looked set to stave off defeat as Amit Bhandari (3 in 33 minutes) and last man Robin Singh (5 from 33 minutes) held firm before medium-pacer Sushant Saxena had the latter caught at first slip by Jatin Paranjpe off the first ball of the final over to seal the victory.
Mumbais second successive win, after inflicting an innings defeat over Karnataka in the opening tie, gave them 16 points with matches against Bengal and Rajasthan to come.
Delhi, who mustered five and three points against Rajasthan and Bengal, remained on eight points with a tough match against Karnataka to come off in Bangalore from March 13 to 16.
Mumbai (1st innings): 247
Delhi (1st innings): 200
Mumbai (2nd innings): 453
Delhi (2nd innings): Devender Sharma c S. Dighe b A. Kuruvilla 34, Akash Chopra c A. Muzumdar b N. Kulkarni 23, Mithun Manhas c A. Muzumdar b S. Bahutule 16, Virender Sehwag c A. Muzumdar b Kulkarni 11, Vijay Dahiya lbw b Kuruvilla 6, Rahul Sanghvi b Bahutule 0, Ajay Sharma c and b Bahutule 11, Ashu Dani st Dighe b Kulkarni 47, Ashish Nehra not out 3, Amit Bhandari c (sub) b Kuruvilla 3, Robin Singh c J. Paranjpe b S. Saxena 5, Extras: (b 7, lb 2, nb 16, w 6) 31, Total (all out in 103.1 overs/398 min) 190
Fall of wickets: 1/56, 2/71, 3/97, 4/99, 5/99, 6/120, 7/124, 8/175, 9/178.
Kafelnikov crushes Rusedski, enters final
LONDON, Feb 27 (AFP) Top seed Yevgeny Kafelnikov beat Britains Greg Rusedski 6-3, 7-6 (7/4) in the semifinals of the $ 800,000 London Indoor Open ATP tour tennis event here last evening to book a place in the final.
Rusedski, the British No. 2 and fifth seed, was out to make amends for last weeks defeat at the hands of Kafelnikov in the Rotterdam Open but he found the top seed in inspired form.
Kafelnikov will face Marc Rosset in the final after the unseeded Swiss player pulled off a shock win over fourth seed Thomas Enqvist of Sweden.
Rosset, a former Olympic champion, took the first set 7-5 before Enqvist levelled the match with a runaway 6-1 success in the second.
At that stage 1999 Australian Open finalist Enqvist appeared favourite, especially because Rosset called for the trainer to treat a painful shoulder.
But Rosset dug deep to snatch the early break and despite a few late scares served out to complete a 7-5, 1-6, 6-3 win.
Serving first against Rusedski, Kafelnikov easily held his serve and then proceeded to produce four exhilarating winners to break the local favourite and stun the biggest home crowd of the week.
The former world No. 1 rattled off a total of 11 points in a row to storm a 3-0 lead before Rusedski, the fifth seed, got on the scoreboard.
A love service game reduced the deficit. But Kafelnikov was serving superbly himself and Rusedski won just five points on the Russians serve in the entire set, two of those gifted with double-faults.
Rusedski had no answer to a mixture of superb winners, brilliant returns and one sublime lob as Kafelnikov justified his top seeding.
Only once in the second set did Rusedski win more than one point on the Russians serve and he had to save four break points in the ninth game before the decisive tie-break.
Rusedski achieved the early mini-break but Kafelnikov was not to be denied and won four points in a row to seal a thoroughly deserved victory and take top spot from Andre Agassi in the ATP Champions race.
OKLAHOMA CITY: Monica Seles routed South Africas Amanda Coetzer 6-1, 6-2 here on Saturday evening, advancing to the finals of the WTA Superthrift Tennis Classic in her first tournament of the year.
The second-seeded American, making a comeback after a six-month layoff, rose to 8-1 lifetime against Coetzer, the third seed, to reach the $ 27,000 title match.
Seles opponent will be French fifth seed Nathalie Dechy, a 6-4, 6-2 winner over Italys Rita Grande in the other semifinal.
Seles (26) is making a comeback at the $ 170,000 event after being out since last September due to a broken right foot that kept her out of the Australian Open.
IAAF considering changes in rules
GHENT (Belgium), Feb 27 (AFP) Mr Lamine Diack, President of the International Athletics Federation (IAAF), has revealed that his body was considering a number of radical changes to athletics events, among them amending the false start rules.
Mr Diack, who took on the post following the death of Primo Nebiolo in November last year, claimed on the first day of the European Indoor Athletics Championships that the sport had stood still for 100 years and needs to start changing its rules.
The Senegal national, a former French long jump champion, said that the IAAF competition commission, chaired by Chinas IAAF Vice-President Dapeng Lou, were considering two possible changes regarding the false start rule.
One was to run the race and then disqualify the runner at the end as happens in swimming; the second alternative is simply to eject a guilty runner immediately and restart the race.
It is also possible no change at all will be made with one IAAF official claiming a lot of people dont like the idea of change.
The proposals have to be considered by the technical commission before going to the IAAF council meeting in Paris on April 2. Recommendations will then be put to the 2001 congress.
FC Kochin have edge over SBT
KOCHI, Feb 27 (PTI) Favourite FC Kochin and State Bank of Travancore (SBT), Thiruvananthapuram, both Kerala teams, will strive hard to take full advantage of the home ground conditions when they lock horns in the National Football League encounter here tomorrow.
However, the Kochin outfit, with three Liberian stars in their rank, enjoys a slender edge over the bankmen, who have no foreign flavour in their side.
Kochin had so far collected 22 points from 15 matches they had played while SBT has 20 from 17 encounters. Much was expected from the star-studded FC Kochin, but it had disappointed the huge crowd that came to watch their encounter on last Friday against Churchill Brothers in the 1-1 draw.
Kochin would have to tighten their defence which had been the bane of the team, if they have to improve their chances in the 12-team league.
The first professional club of the country will also have to improve their display upfront as they will be without captain Joe Paul Anchery, who had earned two yellow cards in earlier matches.
The team, undoubtedly relies on the broad shoulders of mercurial striker I.M. Vijayan to fetch them the goals. Ram Rai and Noushad are there to give the razor touch upfront.
The absence of Anchery would be a loss for us, but Vijayan is there and we have to win the match. Our performance so far was not bad, said their veteran coach T.K. Chathunny.
On the other hand, SBT also have injury problems to their main players. Nippy striker Ashif Saheer and Sivakumar are in the injury list and are doubtful for the crucial encounter.
We have to win this match. My boys have been doing well so far since this is our first entry into the league. We will put up an improved performance here, SBT coach Najeeb said.
The bankmen too have a good attacking line-up in the form of Ignatious, Hakkim and Saheer while their midfield was expected to be in the hands of Suresh Babu, Sabir Ali and Lionel Thomas.
Their defence consisting
of seasoned international Jiju Jacob, Martin and Vinu
Jose looks better equipped than their famed opponents and
the presence of a confident goalkeeper in Firoz Sheriff
should boost their morale.
Bagan stay on top
CHANDIGARH, Feb 27 Title contenders Mohun Bagan consolidated their hold in the National Football League with another victory against Mahindra and Mahindra in the 17th round which concluded yesterday.
The solitary-goal win over the Mumbai outfit took Mohun Bagans tally to 35 points from 10 victories and five draws but following the green and maroon brigade closely are Goas Churchill Brothers, who drew with FC Kochin 1-1 at Thrissur, and Punjabs premier soccer outfit JCT Phagwara. JCTs 2-0 victory over lowly Dempo kept them at the third position with 30 points, which by no means is a small achievement as the team relies purely on local talent.
Salgoacar Sports Club, who began with a flourish, had to remain content at the fourth position with 27 points after they overpowered ITI in a home match at Margao. Tollygunge Agragamis 3-2 win over State Bank of Travancore at Calcutta was also a morale-booster for Amal Dutta, who is known for throwing up surprises.
Another significant result of this round was East Bengal 3-2 win over Jalandhars Border Security Force. The margin of victory is no indicator to the fierce contest. In fact the para-military outfit, after the stunning 2-0 victory against Mahindra and Mahindra in the previous round, came up with another breath-taking performance. The match was drifting towards a 1-1 draw but it was only at the fag end that East Bengal scored two quick goals to dash the hopes of the debutants.
The following are the latest standings of the teams in the National Football League at the end of the 17th round yesterday (read under teams, matches played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, and points):-
Singh soccer from Feb 29
JALANDHAR, Feb 27 Shri Guru Gobind Singh Football Society is organising the second All India Shri Guru Gobind Singh Prize Money Football Tournament here from February 29 to March 7, according to Mr Inderjeet Singh, president of the society.
Last years runners-up Punjab State Electricity Board, Hoshiarpur have been grouped in pool-A along with Sporting Club-De-Goa, Union Club, Ambala and Jammu and Kashmir Bank Jammu.
Pool-B consists of New Delhi Blues, Punjab Armed Police, Jalandhar, Jamshedpur Sporting Association and Khalsa Sporting Club, Chandigarh.
The matches will be played on league-cum-knockout basis. Two best teams qualifying from each group will sail into the semifinals. The organisers have also invited a veteran team from Canada to play an exhibition match with the society XI on the opening day.
Mr Manmohan Singh, organising secretary of the society, added that the tournament was being conducted as per rules and regulations laid down by the All-India Football Federation. A prize of Rs 51,000 will be given to the winners while Rs 35,000 will be awarded to the runners-up. Four outstanding players of the tournament will also be awarded cash awards by the organisers on the concluding day.
Earlier in last three years, the society had organised three tournaments, the first was at district level, second at the state level and the third at the all-India level.
This tournament is being
sponsored by big industrial and sports houses and other
leading brands while Doordarshan is making arrangements
for live coverage of opening and closing ceremonies of
defeat for Haryana
GURGAON, Feb 27 Haryana suffered an innings defeat against Tamil Nadu on the fourth and final day of the Ranji Trophy super league encounter at Nehru Stadium here today. The fourth days play was meant for performing rituals only as it took only six minutes for the match to conclude during which the Haryana batsmen scored only one run and lost the remaining one wicket. Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan struck with the first ball of the third over today to dismiss Vineet Jain for 14 to earn the second successive outright victory for Tamil Nadu in the super league.
On the other hand Haryana suffered their second consecutive defeat in the super league encounter. They failed to get any point but conceded eight. There seems to be no possibility of Haryana gaining an entry in the knock out stage. Haryana is required to play only one match and they have so far garnered three points from three matches.
Haryana was beaten in all departments of the game in this match and a few dubious decisions by the umpires added to their woes. In batting none except Jitender Singh could bat confidently. The Haryana opener recorded the 12th hundred of his Ranji career yesterday.
Haryana (Ist innings): 208
Tamil Nadu (Ist innings): 486
Haryana (2nd innings):
Parinder Sharma c Madangopal b S. Sriram 33, Jitender Singh c Reuben Paul b Robin Singh 100, Jasvir Singh c Hemang Badani b Vidyut 15, Sanjay Dalal lbw S. Mahesh 8, Rajesh Puri lbw S. Mahesh 4, Ajay Ratra c & b Gokulakrishnan 6, Satish Ohlan lbw Robin Singh 25, Pradeep Jain lbw Aashish Kapoor 1, Pankaj Thakur c Aashish Kapoor b Gokulakrishnan 12, Vineet Jain st Reuben Paul b Vidyut 14, Feroz Ghyas not out 1.
Extras (nb-2, lb-9, b-8) 19.
Total (in 82.1 overs) 238
Fall of wickets: 1/63, 2/106, 3/132, 4/136, 5/157, 6/199, 7/206, 8/214, 9/223, 10/238
Mukesh wins third title of season
NOIDA, Feb 27 (UNI) Mukesh Kumar saved the best for the last. On the final day of the Rs 6,00,000 Sir Padampat Singhania Open, the Mhow-based professional shot a five-under 67 to win his third title in the current Wills Sports Indian golf tour season, here today.
Mukesh aggregated nine-under 279 and was six strokes clear of the runner-up Ali Sher, who shot a two-over 74 to aggregate three-under 285. Overnight leader Feroz Ali slipped badly on the final day and finished with a three-over 75, thus taking the joint third place along with brother Rafiq Ali and the current Order of Merit leader, Vijay Kumar, at two-under 286.
The victory was worth Rs 97,200 for Mukesh, who will now take over as the new leader in the Mahindra rankings and stake a strong claim for the Rs 700,000 prize for becoming the player of the year. Ali Sher received Rs 67,200 for his efforts, while Rafiq, Vijay and Feroz got Rs 31,000 each.
In the morning, it looked like a neck and neck race between overnight leaders Feroz and Ali Sher. Feroz began with a birdie but made a bogey on the second hole, while Ali Sher pared the first but made birdies on the next two. Mukesh also began with a birdie, but boogied the next hole.
Thereafter, Feroz and
Ali Sher Fell apart while Mukesh played steadily. After
parring the next five holes, the winner of this
years Wills Northern Open and Tiger Sports
Marketing Open plundered the difficult layout of the
Noida Golf Club course. He sank a 10-foot birdie putt on
the eight to make the turn at one-under. On the back
nine, he made birdies on the 11th and 16th holes and an
eagle on the par five 14th. The eagle was a result of a
perfect four-iron second shot, following a three-wood off
the tee, which left him with a five-feet putt.
New Zealand drop Parore, Wisneski
WELLINGTON, Feb 27 (AFP) New Zealand wicketkeeper Adam Parore was today dumped from the team for the rest of the one-day cricket series against Australia.
Parore (29) played his 137th one-day international yesterday in Christchurch when New Zealand lost by 48 runs to go 0-3 down in the six-match series.
His form, particularly behind the stumps and also with bat, has been scratchy and his demotion was not surprising.
He was replaced by new cap Chris Nevin for the remaining matches in Napier on Wednesday and Auckland on Friday.
Another player to be dropped was seam bowler Warren Wisneski, who has made no impression since joining the team for the first time in the current series.
His place has been taken by the experienced Simon Doull, an original selection in the one-day squad who was released from the last two matches to play for Northern Districts in the domestic competition.
Injured Akram to miss Test series
RAWALPINDI, Feb 27 (AFP) Pakistans chances of reversing their cricketing fortunes today received a cruel blow when pace king Wasim Akram was ruled out of the Test series against Sri Lanka.
Akram suffered a groin injury after bowling just 13 deliveries on day one of the first Test which began yesterday.
He suffered a groin injury and it can only heal in two weeks so he is feared out of the series, Pakistans team doctor Riaz Ahmed told reporters.
Pakistan are also
without Rawalpindi Express Shoaib Akhtar and
all-rounder Azhar Mahmood, who are both nursing injuries,
and included extra batsman for the Rawalpindi Test.
Quit gracefully, Akram advised
RAWALPINDI, Feb 27 (AFP) Former Pakistan cricketers today advised pace bowler Wasim Akram to call it a day and make way for youngsters.
The reaction came after Akram relinquished the captaincy and was unfit during the first Test against Sri Lanka which began here yesterday.
He is no more a match winner and cannot bowl 10 to 15 overs in a spell so its useless for him to drag on, former Test fast bowler Sarfraz Nawaz told reporters.
Asked whether Akram should be allowed to complete 400 Test wickets, Nawaz said, not at national cost.
He has let down the team in the Rawalpindi Test.
Akram has 383 wickets in 92 Tests but is ruled out of the series with a groin injury. He needs another 51 wickets to match Indian pacer Kapil Devs record of 434 wickets.
Nawaz said Wasim was not fully fit for the longer version of the game.
Akram cant even take wickets in the initial overs of the one-dayers and if he wants to play limited over games he should bowl first change, he said.
Nawaz, who partnered the legendary Imran Khan in his career spanning 55 Tests with 177 wickets, said Pakistan should forge a new attack pair of Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Akram.
Akhtar too sustained groin injury ahead of the Rawalpindi Test.
Former batsman and coach Haroon Rasheed said Akram was the best judge to decide when to bid adieu.
A player can gauge himself when to say goodbye but we do not have such a tradition in Pakistan, only Asif Iqbal quit at the right time, Rasheed said.
It is very tough for him to sustain such a pressure any more and that with diabetic problems, he said.
Former wicketkeeper Taslim Arif cited Australian Ian Healys example, saying: I think Healy quit at the peak of his career, Akram is no more a threat to batsmen.
In my opinion its time for him to say goodbye gracefully.
But former captain Zaheer Abbas disagreed.
In my opinion he still has much cricket left in him and he can serve the country, Abbas said.
He termed fitness problem as momentary and said Akram would bounce back.
Haryana win judo titles
JAIPUR, Feb 27 (PTI) Haryana today won both the boys and girls titles in the National Junior Judo Federation Cup tournament at the Swai Man Singh Stadium here.
The Haryana lads dethroned Punjab in the boys section and the girls too outclassed the same opponents to win the title for the third year running.
National School Games and all-India inter-University gold medallist Jasbir Singh earned an Ippon in the decisive bout to give the Haryana boys a 3-2 win.
Earlier, school games gold medallist Hari Singh and international Madan Lal won their bouts against Satish and Kuldeep of Punjab before Navjot and Kamaljeet of Punjab defeated Omprakash and Rajkamal to level the scores.
The Haryana girls had little difficulty in subduing Punjab 4-1. Haryanas junior and Federation Cup gold medallists Shalu, Kamlesh, Jyoti and Anita won their bouts easily.
Swedish paddlers dethrone China
KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 27 (AFP) Cool Sweden wielded the rapier to Chinas bludgeon for a 3-2 win in a final of wildly swaying fortunes in the mens section of the World Team Table Tennis Championships here yesterday.
Rinku, Rajesh help Shiva Club win
LUDHIANA, Feb 27 (FOSR) Rinku (34), Rakesh (3 for 19) and Rajesh ( 4for 23) enabled Shiva Club to outplay Riat Club by four wickets in the semifinal of the seventh Veera Devi Memorial Cricket Tournament at the focal point ground here today.
Batting first, Riat Club scored 163 for eight in the allotted 22 overs. Shiva Club surpassed this total after losing six wickets with 1.1 overs to spare.
Brief scores: Riat Club 163 for 8 (Joga Singh 39, Charanjit 22, Rajan Singh 21; Rajesh 4 for 23, Rakesh 3 for 19, Kamal 1 for 27).
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