Dalmiya damaged my career: Ganguly
Zaheer shines, Mongia flops
Colts clinch series
Bad weather forces draw
Canada not to host cricket series
Chopra, Atwal tied 14th
HPCA earmarks Rs 60 lakh for district-level cricket
Honour eludes weightlifter
One-year ban on Indian lifters
Amit Sharma wins chess title
Dalmiya damaged my career: Ganguly
Kolkata, July 21
Ganguly, now in London, today sent an e-mail to Kolkata, calling upon different sports organisations to support the candidature of Mr Prasun Mukherjee, city police chief, who is also Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s presidential candidate, in the CAB elections against Mr Dalmiya.
Reacting to Ganguly’s charge, Mr Dalmiya said he was quite upset and shocked. He said it was unfortunate that his beloved cricketer had made such allegations against him. He said he was ready to quit CAB and all his associations with the cricket world, provided that would bring back Sourav to his old position in the Team India.
But some veteran cricketers and the Dalmiya-supporters in CAB openly criticised Ganguly for making such allegations against him, who had done so much for the cricket and Ganguly’s cricket career.
Ganguly in his message also extended all his support and cooperation to Mr Mukherjee in the CAB elections to be held on July 30.
The e-mail which reached Mr Mukherjee and his elder brother Snehasish, an active leader in the anti-Dalmiya lobby, today morning, said “ those people responsible for destroying the cricket future of Bengal and the cricket career of the player by divulging the secret e-mail” should be defeated.
And now with about a week left for the elections of the CAB president and other office-bearers, Ganguly’s e-mail gave an encouragement to the anti-Dalmiya group. Though Mr Mukherjee filed his nomination yesterday, neither Snehasish, the Mukherjee camp’s candidate for the post of treasurer nor any other persons of his lobby so far filed their nominations to any other posts.
Mr Dalmiya today filed his nomination papers for the CAB’s president post for which Mr Prasun Mukherjee also filed his nomination.
Meanwhile, the city civil court, which held the hearing on Mr Mukherjee’s petition for appointing an independent observer for conducting the CAB elections on July 30, reserved the ruling till Monday.
Though the court agreed in principle in the appointment of the observer for holding the free and fair CAB elections, it failed to finalise the decision on the selection of the observer.
As short-term measures go, the Indian cricket team for the tri-series in Sri Lanka, where South Africa is the third team in the fray, looks competent enough to reverse the trend of the series against the West Indies, where India were handed out a 4-1 drubbing by a team which on paper was way down the rankings. Obviously the selectors were aware that hosts Sri Lanka had just handed out a 5-0 drubbing to England and could pose quite a few problems at home.
South Africa, too, are no pushovers and the Indians would have their hands full if they are to do well in Sri Lanka. Therefore, fielding the best possible team for the tri-series makes cricketing sense.
But if the selectors are looking at next year’s World Cup, then they have quite a few explanations to give. If the team does well in Sri Lanka, then, of course, the selectors will come forward and say we did a competent job. And if the team flounders again, then the selectors will use the chopping block, although after the team selection, committee chairman Kiran More said there would not be too many changes in the squad for the World Cup. This does not make good cricketing sense. The conditions in the West Indies will be altogether different to those in the subcontinent and the team must have horses for courses.
The return of superstar Sachin Tendulkar was expected. His rehabilitation after the shoulder surgery looks complete, especially after his good knocks for Lashings in England. The selectors have so much confidence in Sachin that the mandatory fitness test under physio John Gloster was given the go-by as Sachin expectedly walked into a team which has as many as five new ball bowlers who will be operating on the slow turners in Sri Lanka. In contrast the team has only three spinners (if one were to include Dinesh Mongia), besides the part-time spin of Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh.
The recall of 29-year-old Punjab Ranji Trophy captain Dinesh Mongia looks more like a stop-gap arrangement for the tour of Sri Lanka rather than a long-term strategy. Sachin and Mongia came into the team at the cost of greenhorn middle-order batsmen Venugopala Rao and opener Robin Uthappa (who has done well in the limited opportunities that he has been given), possibly indicating a policy shift away from the “look young” theory.
Mongia, a member of the Indian team during the last World Cup where he did nothing of note, played last for the country in April, 2005, against Pakistan at New Delhi. Mongia is yet to do full justice to his potential, having scored just 1,073 runs at an average of 27.51 in 51 one-day matches so far. He has taken eight wickets in one-day internationals at an average of 46.25, including five in the World Cup at an average of 27.00. The big question is: can he do well in Sri Lanka because the conditions in the island nation are far different from those in England?
The question which defies an answer is: why is Anil Kumble being kept away from the one-day squad, especially after his wonderful performance in the Test series against the West Indies on pitches where the World Cup matches will be played next year.
The veteran leg-spinner claimed as many as 23 wickets in the Caribbean and looked absolutely fit. More’s explanation that the national selectors had the “right plan” for Kumble is difficult to understand. It is quite possible that Kumble may be called upon to play in the Champions Trophy later in the year but why not now when his confidence is sky high?
Time and again Kumble has been saying that he is very keen to return to the one-day squad. Maybe his age is not exactly right but his enthusiasm and determination can be the envy of any cricketer half his age. And now that he is playing so well he should have been inducted into the team and allowed to continue till the World Cup because in him India have a champion cricketer. — TNS
London, July 21
Chasing Worcestershire’s first innings score of 271 after they elected to bat on the home ground, the visitors were all out for 276 in 102.1 overs.
Zaheer, who has been left out of the Indian team for tri-series in Sri Lanka, returned figures of 5 for 74 in 23.1 overs.
Other Indians had another disappointing day in the county cricket championship here as Dinesh Mongia failed with the bat while ace leg-spinner Anil Kumble struggled to leave an impression.
Mongia had a forgettable outing as the left-hander managed to score only one off 26 balls before falling to P. Jones. However, his team Leicestershire gave a decent reply to Derbyshire’s first innings total of 386. With the help of top-scorer H.D. Ackerman’s 79, Leicestershire were 265 for 5.
Kumble had a drab match in his debut innings for Surrey as he returned with figures of 1 for 127 off 36 overs.
Surrey bowlers struggled a lot as Justin Langer went on to score his triple hundred (342) to lead Somerset to 688 for 8 declared in their first innings. On the other hand, Sourav Ganguly did not get a chance to bat on the first day of the three-day tour match yesterday between Pakistan and Northamptonshire.
Batting first, Northamptonshire declared their innings at 269 for three. — PTI
London, July 21
The tourists thus clinched the three-match series 2-0 yesterday after winning the opening match of the series by 41 runs.
Yo Mahesh (3-30) cleaned up the bottom while Delhi’s Sharma (3-29) shattered the stumps of three top order batsmen to pack off the hosts for a mere 164 runs in 44.5 overs to put paid to their advantage of winning the toss.
In reply, openers Uday Kaul (58) and Parvez Aziz (79) stitched a 125-run stand to end any hopes the hosts might have had to come back into the match. India A romped home in 29.2 overs with the loss of one wicket. — PTI
Melbourne, July 21
No play was possible on the final day at the Cazalys Stadium in Cairns.
India A was set to resume at 117 for no loss, needing 365 more runs for victory.
Australia A opener Phil Jaques was named man of the match for scoring two centuries. He made 240 in the first innings and a quickfire 117 in the second. — PTI
Canada not to host cricket series
New Delhi, July 21 BCCI Secretary Niranjan Shah said the Canada Cricket Association had conveyed their inability to host the ODI series in September this year and the board was contemplating shifting the tournament to another venue. “Canada is not prepared to host the event this year. They have said they cannot give all the facilities and make arrangements for the teams by September,” Shah told PTI. “The series can now he held at other places, maybe in Holland, Singapore or Malaysia,” he said.
New Delhi, July 21
BCCI Secretary Niranjan Shah said the Canada Cricket Association had conveyed their inability to host the ODI series in September this year and the board was contemplating shifting the tournament to another venue.
“Canada is not prepared to host the event this year. They have said they cannot give all the facilities and make arrangements for the teams by September,” Shah told PTI.
“The series can now he held at other places, maybe in Holland, Singapore or Malaysia,” he said. — PTI
Kapur’s fine start draws praise
Hoylake, July 21
Kapur had at least three make-able birdie putts on the eighth, 12th and 15th but the rub of the green was not with him. But he did hole superb birdies on the 16th and 18th to get back to even par.
Louis Martin, the Chief Executive of the Asian Tour, who followed Kapur’s progress, said, “It was a fine debut for both Kapur and Thaworn Wiratchant. Kapur is very young and to show calm temperament on his first appearance is a very good sign. He should make the cut and that will be a big boost for him.”
Martin said he was also impressed with Kapur’s shot-making. “On some of the holes, he showed excellent shot-making. And he holed some crucial putts to save pars.”
Kapur said he played better than his score showed.
“If you’d given me par at the start of the day, I would have taken that but I thought I played better than my score.”
Kapur had a courageous birdie at his last hole with a fine chip from the rough that landed six feet from the pin and he duly converted that.
“On the back nine, I hit it really well but I missed about three realistic opportunities which I should have made. It was tough getting the ball close and overall, I just hung in there.”
Kapur, winner of the Volvo Masters of Asia in Bangkok last December, is only the fourth Indian to play at the British Open.
From the spectators, Deborah Bradley said, “He showed a lot of confidence for someone playing his first Major. He handled himself very well and that should augur well for future.”
Oliver, 12, who is following Kapur through the practice days and also witnessed his first round here, said, “He’s a real nice guy. He spoke a lot with me while playing his practice rounds and after the first round, gave me a golf ball.”
Also coming in for praise was the Asian Tour contingent, which did well to get itself noticed at the 135th edition of the British Open.
Kapur, Andrew Buckle, who got in as a last-minute entry when Trevor Immelman pulled out, and K J Choi shot identical rounds of 72 each, while Thai Thaworn Wiratchant, the topper on the 2005 Asian Tour UBS Order of Merit, also making his Major debut, shot a one-under 71.
But the toast of the Asian Tour contingent was S K Ho, who blazed the course with a four-under 68.
Graeme McDowell, 11th at St Andrews last year, got off to a great start with a flawless six-under 66 to take sole lead on the opening day. The Northern Irishman led defending champion Tiger Woods and the English pair of Greg Owen and Anthony Wall by one shot.
Others at five-under were Spain’s Miguel Angel Jimenez and Japan’s Keiichiro Fukabori were also five under par.
Sergio Garcia and Ernie Els were one back but Colin Montgomerie carded 73.
Lingering thunderstorms delayed the start at Royal Liverpool by 30 minutes, and some overnight rain softened the fairways, making scoring easier. But the wind picked up in the afternoon. — PTI
New York, July 21
Atwal’s round was studded with an eagle four on the par-4 ninth hole and he had three other birdies and one bogey.
The round ought to give Atwal, who is struggling with his putting this season, some confidence. Though the score was fine, he still needed 30 putts for his round on the 7,315-yard layout. Former USPGA Champion Mark Brooks took the lead with a seven-under 65 that gave him a one-shot lead over defending champion Jason Bohn.
Hokkaido (Japan): Jeev Milkha Singh fired a one-under 71 in the second round of the Sega Sammy Cup on the Japan PGA tour to move into tied seventh place at the midway stage on Friday. Jeev, who has four top-10 in six starts on Japan Tour this season, shot four birdies and three bogeys. — PTI
HPCA earmarks Rs 60 lakh for district-level cricket Dharamsala, July 21 Each district-level cricket academy will now go in for turf and cemented wickets at the district headquarters. Other basic infrastructure like nets will be provided by the HPCA. The association will also provide coaches. HPCA president Anurag Thakur said the association had decided to hire 36 coaches under the scheme and a proposal to hold inter-coaching centre matches to give more match practice to players was also being considered. This will help in identifying outstanding cricketers who otherwise could be left out at the district level, he said. He stated that the HPCA was keen on promoting club cricket in the state and it had been made mandatory for all district cricket associations to hold inter-club matches. If they failed to do so, they would not be entitled for subsidy and other grants from the HPCA, he added.
Dharamsala, July 21
Each district-level cricket academy will now go in for turf and cemented wickets at the district headquarters. Other basic infrastructure like nets will be provided by the HPCA. The association will also provide coaches.
HPCA president Anurag Thakur said the association had decided to hire 36 coaches under the scheme and a proposal to hold inter-coaching centre matches to give more match practice to players was also being considered. This will help in identifying outstanding cricketers who otherwise could be left out at the district level, he said.
He stated that the HPCA was keen on promoting club cricket in the state and it had been made mandatory for all district cricket associations to hold inter-club matches. If they failed to do so, they would not be entitled for subsidy and other grants from the HPCA, he added.
Honour eludes weightlifter
Ludhiana, July 21
Parvesh, presently working as the Chief Ticket Collector at Ludhiana railway station, rues the indifferent approach of the Sports and Youth Affairs Ministry as despite receiving recommendations repeatedly from the Indian Weightlifting Federation for honouring this sportsperson for his meritorious achievements, it has done nothing.
Parvesh emerged as the junior national champion in 1981 in Kolkata and next year, he became the national champion in the senior section at New Delhi. This performance enabled him to qualify for
Parvesh, after securing a bronze medal in jerk section in the 56 kg category during these Games held in New Delhi, hogged limelight in the international meet in 1985.
In the Commonwealth Weightlifting Championship conducted in Western Samoa, Parvesh won top honours. He, with a total lift of 242.5 kg, snatched his maiden international title. On the basis of this performance, Parvesh got service in Railways as Travelling Ticket Examiner (TTE).
Three years later, competing in 60 kg category, Parvesh gave an astonishing performance to fetch his second gold medal. In the 1988 edition of this championship at Malta, he lifted 257 kg to lay his hands on the gold medal.
Parvesh added another feather in his cap 1990 when he clinched a gold medal in the Commonwealth Games at Auckland where he lifted a total 257.5 kg (112.5 kg snatch and 145 kg jerk). In the Youth World Weightlifting Championship held in Iran in 1993, Parvesh succeeded in fetching a gold with an attempt of total 265 kg lift.
The gritty, Parvesh laments that while winners of a single gold medal in the Commonwealth Games, G. Devan and R. Chandershekhar, both from the South were given the Arjuna Award and even Sham Lal Salwan who remained champion (national) for six years got this prestigious award, he still awaits for the elusive honour.
Parvesh who has been imparting training to the young weightlifters at the Ludhiana Weightlifting and Bodybuilding club since 1994 and has produced 10 national champions has applied this year for the Dhyan Chand Award which is given to a sportsperson for his or her life time achievements.
New Delhi, July 21
The ban is effective from March, 2006, when two Indian weightlifters — Tejbir Singh and Edwin Raju — tested positive for banned substance stanozanol during the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.
Shailaja Pujari was another lifter to test positive for the same substance during the pre-event national camp at Patiala.
The IWF had announced the ban on its website immediately after the Melbourne Games but were undecided on the duration of suspension to be slapped on the national body. “The IWF conveyed us yesterday that our lifters will not be able to take part in any international events for one year — till March 2007,” Indian Weightlifting Federation President H J Dora told PTI today. — PTI
Amit Sharma wins chess title
Jalandhar, July 21 The top 10 positions: Amit Sharma 1, Kapil Gupta 2, Moti Ram 3, Gursher Singh 4, Iqvinder Singh 5, R. B. Singh 6, Bharat Bhusan 7, Sanjiv Duggal 8, Suhail Mehra 9, Intikhab Alam10. These top 10 players of the championship are eligible to take part in the Punjab ‘A’ Chess Championship to be held at Amritsar from August 4 to 6.
Jalandhar, July 21
The top 10 positions: Amit Sharma 1, Kapil Gupta 2, Moti Ram 3, Gursher Singh 4, Iqvinder Singh 5, R. B. Singh 6, Bharat Bhusan 7, Sanjiv Duggal 8, Suhail Mehra 9, Intikhab Alam10.
These top 10 players of the championship are eligible to take part in the Punjab ‘A’ Chess Championship to be held at Amritsar from August 4 to 6. — TNS
Sania-Marta in semifinals