Chandigarh, India,


March 21, 2005

Kumble gives India a thumping victory
Kolkata, March 20
Anil Kumble once again proved to be Pakistan’s nemesis as he ripped through their batting line-up to help India record a thumping 195-run victory in the second Test at the Eden Gardens here today. Kumble claimed seven for 63 for his 29th five-wicket haul as Pakistan, chasing a daunting target of 422, were shot out for 226 soon after tea on the fifth and final day.

Dravid, Kaarthick put us in winning position: Ganguly
Kolkata, March 20
Terming the first-ever victory against Pakistan here as one of the "better wins" of the Indian team, skipper Sourav Ganguly today praised his deputy Rahul Dravid for playing a crucial role in giving the side 1-0 lead in the three match series. Ganguly also described the first ball dismissal of Younis Khan on the fifth and final day as the turning point of the riveting second Test at the eden Gardens.

Inzamam blames spinners
Kolkata, March 20
Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul Haq today blamed an “irresponsible” approach by the batsmen and lack of application by the spinners for the 195-run defeat against India in the second cricket Test here.

March 20, 2005

Test poised for exciting finish
Kolkata, March 19
The second cricket Test between arch-rivals India and Pakistan was poised on a razor’s edge as Shahid Afridi cracked a blistering half century to provide a blazing start for the visiting team’s chase of a mammoth 422 to win. Chasing an improbable target after India had declared their second innings at 407 for nine, Pakistan swung the momentum a bit in their favour.

Mr Dependable at his best
Kolkata, March 19
Rahul Dravid has once again proved to be Mr Dependable. It was he who along with Dinesh Kaarthick steadied the team after the dismissal of captain Sourav Ganguly.

Bucknor regrets Sachin’s dismissal
Kolkata, March 19
Umpire Steve Bucknor has expressed regret for handing out a wrong decision to Sachin Tendulkar when the latter looked set for his record-breaking 35th century on the third day of the second Test between India and Pakistan.

March 19, 2005

India hit back with a vengeance
Kolkata, March 18
India roared their way back into the match as they broke through the Pakistani line-up quickly and followed it up with a solid batting display to put themselves in the driver’s seat in the second cricket Test here today.

Tendulkar misses another opportunity
Kolkata, March 18
It was yet another frustrating day for Sachin Tendulkar as he again missed an opportunity of completing his 35th Test century. Two days ago, on the first day of the Test at the Eden Gardens, he had completed 10,000 runs. Sachin will get yet another chance in the third Test at Bangalore to achieve the landmark.

March 18, 2005

Younis, Youhana lead strong Pak reply
Kolkata, March 16
Vice-captain Younis Khan and Yousuf Youhana cracked centuries to lead Pakistan's resurgence on the second day and restore balance of the second cricket Test against India here today.

Scoring 400 runs is first target: Youhana
Kolkata, March 17
Pakistan vice captain Younis Khan and Yousuf Youhana, who led a Pakistani resurgence against India scoring a hundred each, are looking at a first innings total of around 450-500 to put pressure on the hosts in the second Test at the Eden Gardens here.

Kumble, Harbhajan bring excitement
Kolkata, March 17
An hour-long Anil Kumble-Harbhajan Singh batting partnership today brought some excitement and cheer to the otherwise dull and monotonous Indian innings, which ended 15 minutes before the lunch break.

March 17, 2005

Pervez to watch last one-dayer at Delhi

Dravid’s ton helps India recover
Kolkata, March 16
Rahul Dravid cracked a scintillating century but India lost three batting stalwarts in a span of 19 balls to allow arch rivals Pakistan claw back into the second cricket Test here today.

Plenty of cricket left in me’
Kolkata, March 16
Star batsman Sachin Tendulkar was definitely a happy man to join the 10,000-run club in Test cricket, but was not disappointed for missing out on scoring the record-making 35th Test hundred on the opening day of the Indo-Pak match here today.

BCCI felicitates centurion Bucknor
Kolkata, March 16
Steve Bucknor was felicitated by the BCCI for becoming the world’s first umpire to stand in 100 Tests today.

March 16, 2005

India looking for that extra push
Kolkata, March 15
After failing to translate a definite advantage into victory in the series opener, India go into the second cricket Test beginning here tomorrow looking for that elusive extra push to put it across arch-rivals Pakistan, who appear more confident after coming back from the brink at Mohali.

Indians keyed up to win Test, says Ganguly
Kolkata, March 15
Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly today threw the gauntlet at arch rivals Pakistan, saying that his side was all keyed up to win the second cricket Test beginning here from tomorrow.

Harbhajan likely to be in final XI
Kolkata, March 15
Indian captain Sourav Ganguly is confident that the victory which the Indian team missed in the Mohali Test will materialise at the Eden Gardens.

Bucknor to be felicitated
London, March 15
Steve Bucknor will receive the Golden Bails Award for completing the unique ‘ton’ of officiating in 100 Tests from the International Cricket Council President Ehsan Mani.

March 15, 2005

India need killer instinct, says John Wright
Kolkata, March 14
The Indian cricketers were more hungry for a win at the Eden Gardens after failing to give the final push for victory in the Mohali Test despite having Pakistan on the mat, team coach John Wright said today.

  Each Test is 50:50, says Woolmer

Pervez likely for Kochi one-dayer
New Delhi, March 14
Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf’s cricket diplomacy is on, but he is most likely to see the first India-Pakistan one-dayer in Kochi on April 2, official sources said today.

Mohali result has made us more focused
Getting so close to victory and not being able to pull it off has left the entire team very disappointed, but it has also made us more focused for the next Test.

Dalmiya expects crowd of over 100,000
Kolkata, March 14
The president of the Cricket Association of Bengal, Mr Jagmohan Dalmiya, has expressed confidence that the second India-Pakistan Test, beginning at the Eden Gardens on March 16, would have an audience of over 1 lakh.

  ODI team during Bangalore Test

Pak report flays Koertzen, Hair
Lahore, March 14
Though the Pakistan think-tank did not openly voice their displeasure over the standard of umpiring in the Mohali Test, they have rated umpires Rudi Koertzen and Darrell Hair poorly in the match reports, according to a daily.

March 14, 2005

India favourites for 2nd Test: Inzamam
Karachi, March 13
Despite his team’s herculean effort to hold the Indians in the first Test at Mohali, Pakistan cricket captain Inzamam-ul-Haq feels that the hosts would still be the favourites for the second Test at Kolkata beginning on Wednesday.

Sourav inspects pitch at Eden Gardens

Harbhajan’s exclusion baffling, says Qadir 
Kolkata, March 13
Leg spin legend Abdul Qadir has criticised the omission of offie Harbhajan Singh from the Indian team in the Mohali Test and said the absence of a second spinner snatched victory from the home side.

Qadir XI beat Kapil XI

Balaji fined for excessive appealing
New Delhi, March 13
Medium pacer Laxmipathy Balaji has been fined 30 per cent of his match fee for breaching the ICC Code of Conduct during India’s first Test match against Pakistan in Mohali.

India lacked hunger on the field 
If India could not quite finish the job of winning the Mohali Test, it was because the team did not show the hunger on the field. They didn't have the body language of a winner.

Cricket teams leave the city
Chandigarh, March 13
Pakistan cricket team captain Inzamam ul Haq had a tough massage done on him. His teammates, along with some Indians, dipped themselves in a hotel pool, and Sachin Tendulkar, after days of abstinence, finally ordered a big meal on the last day of the stay here.

Slum kids strike a chord with ‘Bhajji’
Chandigarh, March 13
The smile on their faces narrated a story. It conveyed a lot of happiness, and awe. It was Theatre Age’s slum children’s day out and dream date with cricketing star Harbhajan Singh. And of course, it came packed with a lot of cricketing action.

March 13, 2005

Akmal steals India’s thunder
Chandigarh, March 12
Even before the first ball had been bowled at the PCA Stadium in Mohali today, everybody was speaking of an Indian victory. It was not a matter of if, but when.

Punjabi hospitality bowls over Chacha Jalil
Chandigarh, March 12
Though the Indian team failed to bowl out the Pakistani side today, Punjabis here have certainly bowled over their Pakistani guests with their hospitality.

Ganguly defends decision to play 3 seamers
Mohali, March 12
Expressing disappointment over India’s failure to force a victory in the first Test at Mohali, skipper Sourav Ganguly said the team would try to achieve a favourable result in the next Test in Kolkata.

Turning Point
Akmal turned the match on its head

If someone was to compare epic knocks played by batsmen, the 109 by little Kamran Akmal of Pakistan will rank very high.

Former Pak captains shower praise on team
Karachi, March 12
Pakistan’s former captains were unanimous in hailing the achievement of Inzamam-ul-Haq’s men who returned from the dead to hold India to a draw in the first cricket Test at Mohali.

Team Pak ruins India’s party
‘Big game’ escapes hosts through third slip, yet carnival spirit lingers on

Chandigarh, March 12
In the end, the jam-packed house went back with the consolation prize: that they had witnessed the best-ever fightback by Pakistan in recent memory. But they had come this morning charged with the scent of victory.

PCA’s apathy shatters potter’s labour of love
Mohali, March 12
Only a few days ago, Vishnu Prajapati, the obscure potter from a small colony in Chandigarh had hit national headlines for the ingeniousness of his self-assigned task — the creation of a massive ceramics bat for the winning team of the Mohali Test match.

Cricketers visit fans’ homes
Chandigarh, March 12
In first-of-its-kind event, Pepsi today took the cricket fever sweeping the city to a new high by taking some of the popular Indian and Pakistani cricketers to homes of consumers here.

Women’s greetings overwhelm guests
Chandigarh, March 12
Destitute women from Burail village today contributed their bit to the Indo-Pakistan friendship by making hundreds of special “rainbow greeting cards” on the theme of peace and conciliation. Designed over a period of time, the cards were released today by Director Social Welfare UT, Ms Madhavi Kataria.

I have fallen in love with India, says Pak guest
Mohali, March 12
The euphoria over cricket is over in the city with the conclusion of first Test match that ended in a draw. The match played between traditional rivals India and Pakistan at the Punjab Cricket Association ground, here, evoked lot of passions and emotions. The match also provided an opportunity to remove misunderstandings from the minds of people of both countries.

March 12, 2005

Pak put up a fight, but wilt under Balaji’s spell
Chandigarh, March 11
Pakistan were staring down the barrel of a gun at the end of the fourth day’s play against India in the first match of the three-Test series at the PCA Stadium here today.

Pak aim to set target of 200 runs: Kaneria
Mohali, March 11
Pakistan are looking to bat well enough and put nearly 200 runs on the board to keep their hopes of saving the first Test against India alive. “We cannot say much at the moment. Let us see what happens if we put 200 runs on the board,” leg-spinner Danish Kaneria said.

Umpire Hair made glaring mistake

Lethal swing bowling by Tamil Nadu fast bowler Laxmipathy Balaji , returning to Test cricket after a very long gap forced by a pelvic injury, and the glaring error in judgement by Australian umpire Darrell Hair when he ruled Pakistani captain Inzamam-ul-Haq leg before wicket to Anil Kumble will not only count as the turning point of the fourth day’s play on Friday, but also as the turning point of the first Test match between India and Pakistan at Mohali.

Indian squad retained for Kolkata Test
MOHALI: Reposing faith in the squad playing in the ongoing Mohali Test, the BCCI has retained the same squad for the second Test scheduled to begin at Kolkata on March 16.

Musharraf to watch one-dayer
Islamabad, March 11
The Pakistan President, Gen Pervez Musharraf, has in principle accepted Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s invitation to visit India to watch one of the India-Pakistan cricket matches, informed sources told The Dawn on Thursday. Sources said dates for the President’s visit would soon be firmed up through diplomatic channels.

Playing tough with VIPs at Mohali
Mohali, March 11
It was certainly not the day for VIPs at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium today. Playing tough with VIP visitors including Ministers, who tried their best to gain access to the Indian and Pakistan cricket teams, the International Cricket Council’s security representative today directed them to stay away.

Bindra reiterates demand to set up BCCI-owned TV channel
Mohali, March 11
Mr I.S. Bindra, president of the PCA, and Mr Lalit Modi, president of the Rajasthan Cricket Association, reiterated their demand to set up a BCCI-owned TV channel without any further delay. They said the delay in setting up the channel was leading to huge financial losses.

PCA-police row over pass privilege
Mohali, March 11
Two matches were on at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium today. While the Indian and Pakistani cricket teams battled it out in the lush green fields of the stadium, the PCA officials and the Punjab police today fought their own war outside.

PCA ignores disabled
Chandigarh, March 11
Thousands of cricket lovers daily make beeline to watch the India-Pakistan Test series at PCA stadium, Mohali, which will conclude tomorrow. But sadly, the organisers have ignored the cause of physically challenged. There is no separate entry for them.

Most Pakistanis leave town to visit other places
Mohali, March 11
Even before the Mohali Test comes to a close, a significant number of Pakistani visitors today abandoned the VIP blocks at the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium, reserved for them.

Death of 28 milch cattle forces officials to sit up
Swara village (Kharar), March 11
A dairy farmer loses six of his precious buffalo to a mysterious disease. But no official notice is taken. The toll of milch animals in the village reaches at 28 in just two months. It was callousness on the part of the officials of Department of Animal Husbandry, Punjab, which prevented them from taking serious action.

Bonhomie beyond cricket
Chandigarh, March 11
The Rangpurias residence in Sector 49 has been buzzing with activity ever since their Pakistani guests walked into their house and hearts four days back. They can’t contain their happiness at being able to host the guests and are playing indulging parents to the six youth, four boys and two girls.

Pak women ‘lack freedom to do their own thing’
Chandigarh, March 11
Bopping, revelry and bonhomie galore!

Jumbo bat, an expression of his passion for cricket
Chandigarh, March 11
Cricket, passion and people are inextricably linked. It is the immense love and passion for the game that has inspired local craftsman Vishnu Prajapati to make a gigantic bat. His emotions moulded in the shape of a 21-foot-long giant bat are indeed spectacular. It weighs around 125 kgs.

March 11, 2005

Sachin falls near peak
Chandigarh, March 10
Little master Sachin Tendulkar failed to scale cricket’s Mount Everest at the PCA Stadium at Mohali today, the third day of the opening match of the three-Test series against Pakistan.

He keeps an eagle eye on cricketers
Mohali, March 10
A smartly dressed Sardar paces a long room at the Punjab Cricket Association stadium at Mohali. Entry to this room is allowed only if the visitor is a VVIP like a Governor or a Chief Minister. Like an eagle, he quietly observes everything in the room.

India will look for 250-plus lead: Sehwag
Mohali, March 10
India will be looking for a lead of 250 to 300 runs, Virender Sehwag, the first innings centurion in the first Test against Pakistan, said. “We are in a good position at the moment.

Turning Point
When Dame Luck smiled

India’s luck must take the honours of day three of the first Test between India and Pakistan at the PCA Stadium at Mohali on Thursday. While admitting that every team needs a slice of luck to swing the game its way, Dame Luck seemed to have helped India a wee bit too much, at least so far in the match.

Ground needed a giant effort

Shoaib not handled well: Sohail
Mohali, March 10
Aamir Sohail, known from his doggedness on the field and who along with Saeed Anwar formed perhaps the most successful opening pair from Pakistan, was neither happy with the Pakistan team composition, nor was he happy to see his team struggle in the first Test at Mohali. During a chat with The Tribune, he looked concerned not only about the team performance, but other issues as well.

Ancestral town awaits Inzamam
Hansi, March 10
Residents of this town are eagerly awaiting the arrival of Pakistan cricket captain Inzamam-ul-Haq, who has expressed his desire to visit his ancestral house and the Chaar Qutab Dargaah, of which his grandfather was once in charge.

Fans disappointed as Sachin, Sehwag miss milestones
Chandigarh, March 10
It was an opportunity that will go down in the annals of history as a ‘big miss’. The Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali lost a lifetime opportunity to become a part of history ‘where legendary Sachin Tendulkar hit the 35th century of his career’, but this did not happen.

Sehwag repeats century at PCA stadium
Chandigarh, March 10
The Punjab Cricket Association cricket ground in Mohali has proved lucky for Virender Sehwag, a dashing Indian opener batsman, who today became the 16th batsman to score a century at PCA stadium, Mohali.

Cricket to ek bahana hai...
Chandigarh, March 10
Cricket has taken a back seat. Thousands of Pakistani visitors who have flocked to the city to watch the cricket teams battling it out termed the game to be an excuse to visit India.

Bukhari praises Indian batsmen
Chandigarh, March 10
Money in cricket has grown manifold which is good for everyone said Rehman Bukhari, former chief of PCB, Pakistan who visited the Yadavindra Public School, Mohali, this evening. Bukhari, a former cricketer said in earlier days, players used to get a meagre amount in the Test matches.

Visas of 700 Pak guests extended
Mohali, March 10
More than 700 Pakistani visitors today got their visas extended to travel to various places in India. SSP Ropar S.P. Singh, said Pakistanis today were permitted to go to Agra Shimla, Delhi and Ajmer.

Pak students feel it’s second home
Chandigarh, March 10
Pakistani students interacted with their counterparts from Punjab at a function organised by the Nehru Memorial Government College Old Students Association, Mansa, at Kalagram here today.

Students enjoy being ushers at stadium
Mohali, March 10
Among the hoards who are thronging the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium here, 20 students of the Yadvindra Public School stand out. Disciplined, uniformed and at their social best, this group of 10 boys and 10 girls is being the perfect ushers.

For him match was excuse to get visa
Chandigarh, March 10
On his first trip to India, Khaakzadah M. Anwar Kamal is full of admiration and awe for the overwhelming affection and warm hands of friendship that engulfed him as soon as crossed over to Wagah. And what has touched him most is the love that Indians have shown.

Pak guests treated to dance and dinner
Panchkula, March 10
It was dance and enjoyment for hundreds of Pakistanis, who had gathered at a restaurant here this evening. The men from across the border danced to the latest Hindi tunes and enjoyed sher-o-shaiyri, at a special feast organised by the restaurant.

Rehris selling eatables do brisk business
Mohali, March 10
Owners of rehris have been doing brisk business in front of the gates of the PCA stadium here after the Municipal Council allowed them to stay put in view of unavailability of adequate food material for police personnel on duty.

Match to begin at 9.30 am
Mohali, March 10
Cricket match of the high profile Test series at PCA Stadium, Mohali, will start at 9.30 a.m. on Friday instead of 10 a.m. This was necessitated due to curtailed play and required overs could not be bowled, according to a press note of the Punjab Cricket Association.

March 10, 2005

Sehwag shines on rain-hit day
Chandigarh, March 9
There are very few superlatives which one can use to describe Virender Sehwag’s batting when he is in full flow. Very few bowlers can contain the Indian opener when he is determined to make his bat do the talking. A player of his nature makes little distinction whether he is playing Test cricket or an one-dayer.

India invites Pervez to watch match
New Delhi/Islamabad, March 9
India has invited Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf to watch one of the matches in the current Indo-Pak cricket series and Pakistan said the General was “positively thinking” of visiting India.

Sehwag wants India to post 500-plus total
Mohali, March 9
Virender Sehwag is known for his carefree ways while on the batting crease. He was as cavalier while handling queries from the media after his superb knock here today. The swashbuckling batsman played a scintillating innings and remained unbeaten on 95 as India finished the second day of the first Test here at 184.

Turning Point
Pakistan will rue dropped catches
THE two dropped catches of India’s opening batsman Virender Sehwag could well be the turning point of the second day of play of the first Test between India and Pakistan at the PCA Stadium at Mohali on Wednesday. And as the game unfolds over the next three days, the visitors could well rue what would have happened if they had held their chances.

Saqlain was not handled properly: lntikhab
Mohali, March 9
“Unfortunately, Saqlain Mushtaq was not handled properly. He was a world-class spinner and a match-winner,” Intikhab Alam, Punjab Ranji team coach, said today. Alam is known for his forthright views and was speaking at the PCA Stadium today.

Dungarpur favours CEO for BCCI
Chandigarh, March 9
Indian cricket must become totally professional if it has to improve the way it has over the years, specially over the past decade. This was the view of Mr Raj Singh Dungarpur, a former president of the BCCI, who was at the PCA Stadium in Mohali today to watch the proceedings of the first Test between India and Pakistan.

Weather to remain unsparing
Chandigarh, March 9
You must be mistaken if you thought the rain gods would change track to oblige Punjab Cricket Association which is in charge of cricket affairs at Mohali. The only way to keep them in good humour now is to keep the fingers crossed.

Sehwag cloudburst puts rain gods to shame
Mohali, March 9
As if the euphoria generated by Indians welcoming Pakistani visitors was not enough, the rain gods too seem inclined to help the Pakistanis. Weather played an instrumental role in washing away the pre-lunch session of second day of the test match being played at Mohali.

Fans line roads for a glimpse of heroes
Mohali, March 9
Cricket mania has taken the entire city in its grip. Those who could not cheer the home team at the Punjab Cricket Stadium stadium in Mohali, managed to get a glimpse of the Indian cricket gods while they were leaving the stadium after the day’s game.

Punjabi hospitality floors guests from Pakistan
Chandigarh, March 9
Our guests from Pakistan were on Cloud 9 tonight. Smitten by the lavish dinner arrangements made at Chandigarh Club, they literally floundered for words when accosted for reactions.

Love counts!
Chandigarh March 9
Overwhelmed by the care and affection showered on him and his compatriots by the Indians, Nasir Mehmood, a real estate developer from Lahore, donated Rs 7,000 to the Chandi Kusht Ashram in Sector 47 in Chandigarh yesterday.

Hunting for forbidden pleasure
Chandigarh, March 9
Most Pakistanis used cricket as an opportunity to come to India, but contrary to their public claims about love for the game, most Pakistani visitors admit in private that cricket has provided them the much needed excuse to visit India.

Visa extension, a dream come true
Mohali, March 9
More than 500 Pakistani visitors got their visa extension to travel to various places in Punjab today. The SSP, Ropar, who is authorised to extend visas all over Punjab today stated that majority of the visa extension were given for Amritsar.

Sector 17 market buzzing with guests
Chandigarh, March 9
The Sector 17 market is buzzing with activity these days. The latest craze among youths and older people is to identify guest from Pakistan strolling around in the market. On a visit to the main market this correspondent saw local boys and even children asking their parents curiously, ‘Mama is that a Pakistani or a Hindustani?

2 Pak patients discharged
Mohali, March 9
Two Pakistani citizens, Mohammad Sohail Afzal Butt of Lahore and Mohammad Arshad Khan who were admitted to a hospital here were discharged today.

City is beautiful: Salman Butt
Chandigarh, March 9
It was total chaos at a leading Sector 17 footwear showroom this evening. People thronged the shop to have a glimpse of Pakistan cricketers who had come to visit the showroom at the invitation of the company.

Governor advocates fresh ideas for security environment
Chandigarh, March 9
In the backdrop of emergence of new, multi-dimensional threats to security and the changing nature of warfare, the Governor of Punjab, Gen S F Rodrigues (retd) called for fresh ideas, new methods and concepts which were suited to the local political, economic social and security environment.

A “Lahori” poet with anti-war poems
Chandigarh, March 9
Among the thousands who have arrived from across the border to be part of the Indo-Pak cricket Test at Mohali is Raja Sadiqullah, a well-known poet of Punjabi from Lahore.

March 9, 2005

Seamers send Pak packing
Chandigarh, March 8
Indian medium-pacer Laxmipathy Balaji signalled his return to Test cricket with a career-best figure of five for 76 as Pakistan, after losing three quick wickets before lunch with only 89 runs on the board, did well to recover to end day one of the first Test against India at the PCA Stadium at Mohali today at 312 all out.

Doing well against Pak a challenge: Balaji
Mohali, March 8
“It is always a challenge to do well against Pakistan,” Laxmipathy Balaji, who emerged hero for India taking his maiden five-wicket haul and playing a key role in India restricting Pakistan to a modest total in the first Test here.

Turning Point
The toss held the key

THE toss was crucial at the PCA Stadium at Mohali on Tuesday. And it also turned out to be the turning point of day one of the first Test between India and Pakistan.

It’s more than cricket as peaceniks join the game
Chandigarh, March 8
The title of a book on the match-fixing scandal was called ‘It’s Not Quite Cricket’ but going by the emotional high on both sides of the border as the Indo-Pak Test series started today in Mohali shows that it is much more than cricket.
In video: Pakistani visitors bowled over by Indian hospitability. (28k, 56k)

United colours of a passion — cricket
‘Them’ become ‘us’ at Mohali
Chandigarh, March 8
Emotions of Friendship, love, and brotherhood between traditional rivals ruled the first day of the test series between India and Pakistan, both inside and outside the stadium. Professing a lasting relationship strengthened with emotional bonding, Indians and Pakistanis took the bilateral ties between the two nations a step ahead, using cricket as an anchor.

Sharmila lost, and found
Mohali, March 8
In the Punjab Cricket Association stadium here a few friends were discussing cricket when suddenly bollywood actress of yesteryears Sharmila Tagore appeared and asked “Where was I sitting?”

Cricket match: who will pay for security?
Mohali, March 8
The Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) and the Punjab police seem to be heading for conflict on who will pay for the security by the Punjab police inside and outside the stadium.

Poor occupancy in hotels
Guests go for budget accommodation
Chandigarh, March 8
Several city hotels which had cancelled corporate bookings to host Pakistani visitors have been incurring heavy losses as most of them have gone elusive.

Razzaq repays debt
Chandigarh, March 8
The ace Pakistani all-rounder Abdul Razzaq had been waiting for seven years to repay his debt to a local doctor who had operated upon him in 1997 when the player injured his leg in a match between Sri Lanka and Pakistan at Mohali.

Counters set up for guests from Pak
Chandigarh, March 8
The Sector 17 market is wearing a festive look these days. Different counters have been set up by the Municipal Corporation and the Traders Association, Sector 17, in order to help the guests from Pakistan.

Police extends visas of 12 Pak guests
Mohali, March 8
Pakistani visitors to Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula now can travel up to Delhi and Ajmer.

Cops at PCA stadium go without water
Mohali, March 8
The 2000 police personnel on guard duty outside the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium here today went without water for over 7 hours. The men were called for duty at 6 am in the morning and till lunch time at 1 pm, no arrangements were in place for water for these policemen.

Sight-seeing, not match, interests visitors
Chandigarh, March 8
Even as the Pakistan cricketers had a tough time against the Indians at the PCA Stadium in Mohali today, a large number of young visitors had a gala time outside the stadium.

Celebrity status giving Pakistanis tough time
Chandigarh, March 8
Their crossover from Wagah gave them a high. A welcome exuding Indian warmth, red carpets rolled out wherever they went, the Pakistani nationals couldn’t have asked for more and thus began their Indian dream. After all, camarderie was all the Indo-Pak cricket series was about. That, of course, is history.

‘Pak guests’ pockets picked’
Mohali, March 8
Though the first day of the Indo-Pak Test match remained peaceful, complaints of pick pocketing were received.

March 8, 2005

India likely to play 3 seamers
Chandigarh, March 7
The start of a Test series is always a very testing time for any captain. It will be more so for Sourav Ganguly when his squad take on Pakistan in the first Test beginning at the PCA Stadium in Mohali tomorrow.

Yuvraj, Nehra left out of squad
Mohali, March 7
In what could be termed as a jolt to local fans, swashbuckling batsman Yuvraj Singh and pace bowler Ashish Nehra have been left out of the Indian squad for the first Test beginning at the PCA Stadium here tomorrow.

‘Musharraf won’t watch Kolkata Test’
New Delhi, March 7
There is no truth in reports that Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf would be watching the Indo-Pak cricket match in Kolkata, sources told The Tribune today.

India have edge in Tests: Rameez Raja
Wagah, March 7
Former Pakistani batsman Rameez Raza today said India had an edge over Pakistan in the Test series. He reached India along with 578 Pakistani cricket enthusiasts today to watch the first Test.

Bonhomie won’t distract us from cricket
Baisakhi has come a month earlier to Chandigarh. The weather, which was bitingly cold just 10 days ago, has become extremely pleasant, and the entire city is getting ready for the meeting not only of the two teams but also of the Indian and Pakistani supporters.

Peace warriors’ Test begins
Chandigarh, March 7
The ‘warriors’ are here again after a gap of six years. The last encounter at Mohali, a one-dayer, was tense and tough, and even before the teams had landed, battelines had been drawn. It was the first thaw and the colours of bonhomie were muted.

Only Hindu in Pak team visits Mansa Devi temple
Chandigarh, March 7
Pakistani player Danish Prabhashankar Kaneria visited to Mata Mansa Devi temple here, today. He is the only Hindu player of the visiting Pakistani cricket team. He had ‘darshan’ of goddess seek blessings. He was taken to the temple in a Tribune car.

Pak cricket fans turn businessmen
Sell dry fruits, cloth
Chandigarh, March 7
Pak guests who have come to the City Beautiful to watch the high profile Indo-Pak Test match were seen in a different orole taoday. Some of them have brought ‘saugaats’ for their brethren here, but at a price. 

Pak team to miss Shoaib Akhtar
Chandigarh, March 7
The Pakistan XI will certainly miss their star bowler Shoaib Akhtar since he gives a scare to Indian batsmen. This was stated by maestro spinner Harbhajan Singh. He came to the DAV College cricket coaching centre, Sector 10, at the invitation of DAV College Principal Subhash Marriya and former Test player Yograj Singh. He was accompanied by local Indian team manager Ranjit Bajaj.

In hearts and homes of people
Mohali, March 7
It is in the hearts and homes of the people of this township that Pakistan and India came to being the one nation that we were before the Partition. For those Mohali residents who had offered to accommodate Pakistani visitors, the morning dawned with their wishes coming true. And for the “brothers” across the border, the greetings and welcome they received in these houses was beyond their imagination.

Examinations play spoilsport, say students
Chandigarh, March 7
The Indo-Pak match is being held at the wrong time in the city and school students couldn’t agree more. While cricket is weighing on their minds, they have the arduous task of keeping their heads buried in their books since it is examination time as well. The excitement in the city is almost infectious and the students are having a tough time keeping the cricket frenzy at bay.

Do away with trade barriers, say Pakistani guests
Chandigarh, March 7
Impressed by quality products available at less rates in India, a section of young Pakistani traders stressed the need for doing away with trade barriers to allow an integrated India, Pakistan and Bangladesh market to take on the European Union.

Shakeel dreams of a role in Indian films
Mohali, March 7
Here is a fan from Pakistan, the likes of whom Sanjay Dutt will not even find in India. Shakeel, a budding journalist from Pindi, Pakistan, has a collection of over a thousand photos of the actor. “The craze started in 1992 when I saw his film “Khalnayak.” Since then I have collected each and every picture of Sanjay Dutt. I have at least 30 albums of these pictures now,” he said.

CM to host dinner for Pak guests
Chandigarh, March 7
The Chandigarh Club will host qawaalli night to entertain guests from Pakistan on March 11. It has been also chosen as the venue for hosting dinner for 2500 persons from Pakistan by Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on March 9.

Police counters to assist Pak guests
Chandigarh, March 7
The police has set up special counters at Cricket Stadium in Sector 16 and at the police Headquarters in Sector 9 to provide information and assistance to Pakistani guests.

Panchkula impresses visitors from Pak
Panchkula, March 7
The 300 Pak visitors to the township, impressed by the lush green gardens, compare it to Islamabad — the most beautiful city in Pakistan. In town as part of the team visiting India for the Indo-Pak test match at Mohali, the visitors from across the borders say that they were impressed with the gardens here.

One held for selling tickets on black market
Mohali, March 7
A resident of Phase X here was today arrested on a charge of selling tickets on the black market of the cricket Test match between India and Pakistan starting tomorrow.

Bureaucrat couple’s son has brush with cops
Mohali, March 7
Ranjit Bajaj, local manager of the Indian Cricket team and son of a Punjab bureaucrat couple, had a scuffle with a policeman here outside the PCA main gate this afternoon.