SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
S P O R T S

4th One-dayer
Depleted India hope for a miracle
Dravid’s replacement still undecided
Virender Sehwag during a press conference in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday.
Port Elizabeth, November 28
Smarting under two heavy defeats and a barrage of criticism, India have promised to fight back in the one-day series by putting a better batting display in the fourth ODI against South Africa here tomorrow.
BUMPY ROAD AHEAD: Virender Sehwag during a press conference in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday. — AFP photo

Ganga keeps Windies afloat
Karachi, November 28
West Indies opener Daren Ganga played a lone hand of 77 to keep his team alive in the third and final Test against Pakistan today.

Sajid alleges racial abuse
London, November 28
England fast bowler Sajid Mahmood was not a part of the playing eleven in the first Ashes Test but he could not escape racial abuse from Australian spectators in Brisbane. 
                         Sajid Mahmood

Aussies name same squad for 2nd Test
Sydney, November 28
Australian selectors today unveiled an unchanged 13-man squad to face England in the second Ashes Test in Adelaide later this week after thrashing the visitors in the opener.

SA rest six seniors for Pro-20 match
Durban, November 28
South Africa has rested six senior players for the Pro-20 cricket match to be played against India at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on Friday.

Doha Asiad
Footballers kick off campaign today
Doha, November 28
India open their football campaign in the Asian Games against a lowly Hong Kong here tomorrow but their job in pool D has become tougher with the reinstating of Iran.


Italy’s World Cup-winning captain Fabio Cannavaro and actress Monica Belluci after Cannavaro was awarded the prestigious European Footballer of the Year Award (Ballon d’Or) in Paris on Monday.
Italy’s World Cup-winning captain Fabio Cannavaro and actress Monica Belluci after Cannavaro was awarded the prestigious European Footballer of the Year Award (Ballon d’Or) in Paris on Monday. — AP/PTI photo



EARLIER STORIES




Indian is Asian kabaddi chief
New Delhi, November 28
Kuldip Vats of India was elected president of the Asian Amateur Kabaddi Federation (AAKF) at its congress here today. Vats, who is the joint secretary of the 2010 Commonwealth Games Organising Committee as well as an executive committee member of the Indian Olympic Association, said efforts would be made to include kabaddi at least as a demonstration game in the Delhi Commonwealth Games.

Pakistan bodybuilders test positive
Lahore, November 28
Pakistan has withdrawn from the bodybuilding competition of the Doha Asiad after it’s three-member team flunked a dope test.

School games: Punjab bag two gold
Ferozepore, November 28 
Maharashtra and Mizoram girl wrestlers dominated the mat as they claimed three gold medals each in the first National Inter-School Games at the Shaheed Bhagat Singh Stadium here today. Punjab bagged two gold medals through Kiranjit Kaur and Amanjeet Kaur in the 34 kg and 44 kg categories, respectively.




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4th One-dayer
Depleted India hope for a miracle
Dravid’s replacement still undecided
Ashish Shukla

Port Elizabeth, November 28
Smarting under two heavy defeats and a barrage of criticism, India have promised to fight back in the one-day series by putting a better batting display in the fourth ODI against South Africa here tomorrow.

The promise, however, rang hollow, given the injury-induced absence of skipper and key batsman Rahul Dravid, a replacement for whom for the day-night encounter was still not decided.

Stand-in skipper Virender Sehwag, himself struggling for runs, sought to put up a brave front though and said Dravid’s absence would give the other players a chance to show their worth.

“There are a few issues, including Dravid’s replacement, which would be discussed later in the day,” Sehwag said.

“But in a way it (Dravid’s absence) is an opportunity because we could have games in future when there would be no Tendulkar or Dravid. The rest of the boys have to be prepared and take over the responsibility,” he said.

Sehwag also said that he believed in going into a match with five bowlers but it remains to be seen whether the team management actually has the daring to do that when it is the batting which is their main concern.

But both the spinners — Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh — were likely to bowl in tandem once again as indicated by the Delhi opener.

Trailing 0-2 in the five-match series, the first of which was washed out, India desperately need a win to prevent a whitewash and salvage some pride, dented several times over ever since they set their foot in this country.

After the first match was washed out by rains, Indian batsmen struggled against South African pace attack losing their last two matches by huge margins of more than 100 runs.

V. V. S. Laxman, who was initially overlooked for the series, has been drafted in as a replacement for Dravid but it appears unlikely that he would be able to reach the venue in time.

The team appears worn out by the happenings on field in South Africa, as well as off-field issues igniting the passions in India. The players as well as coach Greg Chappell have reasons to feel under siege.

Stand-in captain Sehwag now has the dual responsibility of attending to his batting as well as motivating the players to stop the team from sliding one step closer to a complete whitewash in the series. Sehwag himself missed the first two matches of the tour due to a finger injury and is struggling to find form after he was out for a duck in the third ODI on Sunday.

Sachin Tendulkar too could sense the heat around him as he is seen doing nothing to shore up the team’s cause and another failure here would park the caravan of critics right in front of his door.

Laxman’s arrival in a way is a complete letdown for Chappell’s philosophy of looking to find younger and fitter players to shape India’s one-day line-up in years to come.

Chappell has always been a big advocate of encouraging at least two-dimensional cricketers in the team but the return of Zaheer Khan and Anil Kumble, and now Laxman, appears a vote of no-confidence against his fresh-legs theory by the selectors.

Indians have done the act of shifting horses in the midstream and it must be said that its world cup plans, as well as that of future beyond, at the moment are in complete disarray.

South Africa, on the other hand, have the luxury to try out new faces and they have gone ahead and done exactly so in this match by adding Ashwell Prince to the squad. Prince replaces Boeta Dippenaar as the only change to the South African ODI squad for the remaining two matches against India. — PTI

Teams (from): India: Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag (capt), Mohammad Kaif, Dinesh Mongia, Dinesh Kaarthick, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Anil Kumble, Ajit Agarkar, Harbhajan Singh, S Sreesanth, Irfan Pathan, Munaf Patel and Zaheer Khan.

South Africa: Graeme Smith, Loots Bosman, Jacques Kallis, Herschelle Gibbs, AB de Villiers, Mark Boucher, Shaun Pollock, Andre Nel, Makhaya Ntini, Charles Langeveldt, Andrew Hall, Justin Kemp and Ashwell Prince.

Hours of play (IST): 6.00 pm till 9.30 pm; 10.10 pm till close of play. 

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Ganga keeps Windies afloat

Karachi, November 28
West Indies opener Daren Ganga played a lone hand of 77 to keep his team alive in the third and final Test against Pakistan today.

Ganga steered West Indies to 191 for six at close on day two with his defiant and unbeaten knock on a slow, low bouncing pitch on which Umar Gul and Danish Kaneria took six wickets.

Ganga, who has faced 214 balls and batted for 308 minutes, ensured his team were not rolled over by the home side, who were bowled out for 304 one hour into the morning session.

After a solid 51-run opening stand between Ganga and Chris Gayle, who stroked his way to 40 from 54 balls, West Indies were rocked by pacer Gul who took three wickets in 10 balls.

He had Gayle caught at mid-on by Abdul Razzaq and two balls later bowled skipper Brian Lara with a beauty that moved away and took off-stump in his first over after lunch.

Lara failed to get off the mark after scores of 61, 122 and 216 in the previous two Tests.

Next over, Gul produced an unplayable, in-dipping yorker to clean up Ramnaresh Sarwan, back in the side after being dropped for the second test, also for a duck.

Ganga revived the visitors from a precarious 51 for three with a 63-run stand with Shivnarine Chanderpaul for the fourth wicket, the latter picking the gaps beautifully to score 36 from 49 balls with seven fours.

Scoreboard

Pakistan (1st innings)

Hafeez b Collymore 18

Farhat c Ramdin b Bravo 47

Younis run out 20

Yousuf lbw Collymore 102

Inzamam c Chanderpaul b Ganga 18

Malik lbw Taylor 18

Razzaq c Ramdin b Bravo 7

Akmal b Collymore 31

Nazir b D. Powell 0

Gul b D. Powell 26

Kaneria not out 7

Extras (b-1, lb-7, nb-2) 10

Total (all out, 100.5 overs) 304

Fall of wickets: 1-26, 2-72, 3-112, 4-178, 5-222, 6-239, 7-248, 8-265, 9-272.

Bowling: Taylor 22-3-76-1, Collymore 21-6-57-3, Gayle 16-3-27-0, Powell 23.5-5-83-2, Bravo 14-6-33-2. Ganga 4-0-20-1.

West Indies (1st innings)

Gayle c Razzaq b Gul 40

Ganga not out 77

Lara b Gul 0

Sarwan b Gul 0

Chanderpaul c Farhat b Kaneria 36

Morton c Farhat b Kaneria 21

Bravo c Akmal b Kaneria 8

Ramdin not out 0

Extras (b-4, lb-1, nb-4) 9

Total (6 wkts, 72.4 overs) 191

Fall of wickets: 1-51, 2-51, 3-51, 4-114, 5-153, 6-190.

Bowling: Gul 16-4-49-3, Nazir 12-2-38-0, Kaneria 28.4- 11-48-3, Razzaq 12-3-41-0, Hafeez 4-1-10-0. — Reuters 

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Sajid alleges racial abuse

London, November 28
England fast bowler Sajid Mahmood was not a part of the playing eleven in the first Ashes Test but he could not escape racial abuse from Australian spectators in Brisbane.

Sajid has revealed that while he was taking a drink out to an England fielder, a spectator told him: “You can’t be English.”

Writing for his column in The Guardian, the Lancashire quick said: “Yes, it is racist, but I can’t do anything about it.

It is the third instance of abuse for the members of English team after spinner Monty Panesar was referred to as ‘stupid Indian’ and Kevin Pietersen was targeted during the tour match against New South Wales in Sydney.

Sajid’s family hails from Pakistan, while Panesar has his roots in India and Pietersen comes from South Africa.

Sajid suspected the verbal attacks could aggravate as the series reaches its peak. “You’re going to get stuff like that out here and you’ve just got to learn to ignore it. There’s no point biting back because there’s going to be a lot of it,” he said.

“If I get caught up in that sort of stuff my focus and concentration on the game will be taken away. And right now the whole squad needs to focus on one thing and that’s getting our grip back on that little urn. There’s enough to focus on without worrying about abusive crowds,” he added. — PTI

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Aussies name same squad for 2nd Test

Sydney, November 28
Australian selectors today unveiled an unchanged 13-man squad to face England in the second Ashes Test in Adelaide later this week after thrashing the visitors in the opener.

With all-rounder Shane Watson ruled out through injury there was no place for second spinner Stuart MacGill, allowing batsman Michael Clarke to retain his spot when the two sides begin their next confrontation on Friday.

MacGill had hoped to be included at the batsman-friendly Adelaide Oval, but was again omitted from the squad as selectors retained their victorious line-up.

But chairman of selectors Andrew Hildtich said did not rule out picking two spinners later in the series.

But selectors retained Tait and Johnson as possible “options”, with the team to be finalised later in the week.

Team: Ricky Ponting (capt), Adam Gilchrist, Stuart Clark, Michael Clarke, Matthew Hayden, Mike Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Justin Langer, Brett Lee, Damien Martyn, Glenn McGrath, Shaun Tait and Shane Warne. — AFP

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SA rest six seniors for Pro-20 match

Durban, November 28
South Africa has rested six senior players for the Pro-20 cricket match to be played against India at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on Friday.

Mark Boucher, Jacques Kallis, Andrew Hall, Andre Nel, Makhaya Ntini and Shaun Pollock would be rested, Convenor of the Selection Committee Haroon Lorgat said in a statement today.

“We are fortunate to have talented players in reserve which allows us to rest some of our senior players. These include the likes of AB de Villiers as a wicket-keeper, and all-rounder bowlers such as Tyron Henderson, Albie Morkel, Roger Telemachus, Robin Peterson and Johan van der Wath,” he said.

Lorgat also tried to clear up misconceptions about his decision to bring in Andrew Hall for Andre Nel in the third ODI. “Nel had sustained an injury to his right index finger and I made the call to the replace him,” Lorgat said.

SA Pro-20 squad: Graeme Smith (capt), Loots Bosman, AB de Villiers, Herschelle Gibbs, Tyron Henderson, Justin Kemp, Charl Langeveldt, Albie Morkel, Robin Petersen, Ashwell Prince, Roger Telemachus, and Johan van der Wath. — PTI

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Doha Asiad
Footballers kick off campaign today

Doha, November 28
India open their football campaign in the Asian Games against a lowly Hong Kong here tomorrow but their job in pool D has become tougher with the reinstating of Iran.

The team, led by Baichung Bhutia, arrived here after their 10-day preparatory camp in Dubai, thus ending the uncertainty surrounding its participation in the Game.

The 20-member team, cleared on the no-cost-to-government basis, will also play against Maldives in this pool.

Goalkeeper Sandip Nandy, midfielder Climax Lawrence and striker Baichung Bhutia are the three players over 23 years of age in the squad.

Sandeep Nandy was very thrilled with his maiden Asian Games and was confident that India will do well.

The team’s fortunes have been sliding ever since anyone can care to remember. From being in the top 100 in November 1993 — India was ranked 99 — they are down to 148 this November. The All India Football Federation has changed nine coaches in the last 18 years but with no positive results.

India had won the inaugural Asian Games gold medal in 1951 and defended it in 1962 at Jakarta. Their last good show at the Games was a bronze medal in 1970. India has even struggled against Maldives in the SAF Football tournament but Bob Houghton is hopeful that his boys would perform well this time.

Prakash opts out

DOHA: It is going to be tough for the Indian tennis squad at the Asian Games here as Prakash Amritraj has opted out, while Sania Mirza finds herself in a tough field, which comprises nine of the top 10 women players of the continent in the competition to be held from December 4 to 14.

Among the women players, Asia’s number one women player Ai Sugiyama is not coming here to play but the likes of Chinese number one Li Na, ranked 21st in the world now, will be here.

India’s challenge will be spearheaded by Sania, ranked sixth in Asia and 67th in the World.

However, China is the clear favourite to dominate the women’s section as another strong contender for the gold, Zheng Jie, a doubles specialist, also confirmed her participation.

In the men’s section, India’s hopes suffered as Prakash Amritraj has decided not to participate in the Asiad due to a wrist injury.

Prakash was to play in singles and pair with Rohan Bopanna in the doubles.

It is not yet known who will replace Prakash but his dropping out has created problem for the Indians not only in the singles but also in doubles.

Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi are the other doubles pair for India in this competition.

The Koreans are also sending strong side and India will find hard to get past them.

In singles, Thailand’s Paradorn Srichaphan is rated to be the hot favourite.

Team: men: Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi, Rohan Bopanna, Harsh Mankad, Karan Rastogi. Women:Sania Mirza, Shikha Uberoi, Ankita Bhambri, Isha Lakhani, Rushmi Chakravarthi, Sandhya Nagraj.

Paddlers in tough group

DOHA: Indian paddlers have run into rough weather as they are placed in the toughest group along with defending champion China and Japan in the table tennis competition of the Asian games here.

Yemen is the fourth team in the group A.

Indian men team faces Japan in the opener while the women take on Uzbekistan in their opening matches tomorrow.

In the evening, Indian male paddlers face China and their women team-mates play North Korea in their second league matches.

Sixteen teams have been divided into four pools with as many teams in them and top two teams from each pool will make it to the knockout stage.

The Indian women, however, can hope of a winning start against Uzbekistan but they face tough competition in their second league match against North Korea.

Chess: India wary of China

CHENNAI: The Indian trio of Grand Masters, Krishnan Sashikiran, Pentyala Harikrishna and Koneru Humpy, who is also a men’s GM, would have to be wary of the ‘Dragon variation’, so to speak, as by their own admission, China would be their main rival in the fight for gold at the Doha Asian Games from December 1, where chess would be making its debut as a medal sport.

Addressing a press conference on the eve of the Indian chess contingent’s departure to Mumbai early tomorrow en route to Doha, the trio who had a short duration coaching camp with trainer Lev P Sakish said the team was confident of performing well with Sakish emphasising that the team would definitely bag the second spot.

Rugby: Nasser to lead

MUMBAI: Nasser Hussain will lead a 12-member Indian Rugby Team at the Asian Games in Doha, according to information received from the Indian Rugby Football Union.

There are 18 member countries of Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU), of which only 9 countries have qualified for the Asian Games.

Team: Nasser Hussain (capt); Mufaddal Indorelwala, Hrishikesh Pendse, Pritom Roy, Ganesh Sawant, Shailesh Devrukhkar, Bilkash Jena; Sendil Kumar, Sujai Lama, Amit Lochab, Puneet Krishnamoorty, Sheikh Saidul and Bikash Mondal. — UNI

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Indian is Asian kabaddi chief

New Delhi, November 28
Kuldip Vats of India was elected president of the Asian Amateur Kabaddi Federation (AAKF) at its congress here today. Vats, who is the joint secretary of the 2010 Commonwealth Games Organising Committee as well as an executive committee member of the Indian Olympic Association, said efforts would be made to include kabaddi at least as a demonstration game in the Delhi Commonwealth Games.

Amateur Kabaddi Association of Thailand president Maj. Gen. Samara Kesomin was elected the deputy president while Brig. E.M. Mahindra Ambanpola of Sri Lanka, Abdul Majeed of Pakistan and Mala Banerjee of India were elected vice-presidents.

Incumbent secretary-general S.T. Arasu of Malaysia was re-elected for another four-year term. The meeting also proposed to take effective measures to arrest the dwindling number of kabaddi teams in the Asian Games as only five teams would be featuring in the Doha Asiad, and the number may further dwindle in the 2014 Asiad. — OSR

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Pakistan bodybuilders test positive

Lahore, November 28
Pakistan has withdrawn from the bodybuilding competition of the Doha Asiad after it’s three-member team flunked a dope test.

Quoting a Pakistan Bodybuilding Federation (PBF) official, The Nation reported that the three bodybuilders — Atif Anwar, Khalid Ali, Shoaib Zahoor — were found positive in tests conducted on the instructions of the Asian Bodybuilding Federation.

The PBF received the reports from the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) laboratory at Malaysia and immediately decided against participating in the Asian Games which start December 1.

The official also stated that the punishment for the tainted trio will be decided after the Games conclusion on December 15. UNI

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School games: Punjab bag two gold

Ferozepore, November 28 
Maharashtra and Mizoram girl wrestlers dominated the mat as they claimed three gold medals each in the first National Inter-School Games at the Shaheed Bhagat Singh Stadium here today. Punjab bagged two gold medals through Kiranjit Kaur and Amanjeet Kaur in the 34 kg and 44 kg categories, respectively.

Priyanka D. Shinde gave the first gold to Maharashtra by beating Poona of Punjab in the final of 30 kg category. Priya Aken (32 kg) and Sarika Kadam (40 kg) were the other gold medallists for Maharashtra.

Mizoram won the top positions through Lalrinajieli (37 kg), C Vanpalzauali (48 kg) and P.C. Rodinliani (52 kg).

Maharashtra also won two gold medals in weightlifting. Nawale Ketaki captured gold in the girls’ 48 kg category with a lift of 91 kg. Maharashtra struck another gold when Ranjit C K lifted 192 kg in 56 kg category for boys.

Tamil Nadu won gold in table tennis by defeating Maharashtra 3-0 in boys’ section. Punjab have to satisfy themselves with a bronze. — UNI

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 BRIEFLY

India win in practice match
Doha:
India scored a field goal and converted a penalty corner to beat Malaysia 2-0 in a 40-minute hockey practice match here on Tuesday.
Rajpal Singh put India ahead and Raghunath then converted a penalty corner to make it 2-0 for the former champions. “We are playing the opening match against Bangaldesh and it is important that we win the match by a good margin. It will be dangerous for us to underestimate them,” the coach added. — UNI

Cricket meet
Patiala:
Fine knocks by S.B. Sharma (60 n.o.) and Rohan Prem (71 n.o.) enabled Kerala to score 159 for 2 against Delhi in the All India C.K. Nayadu trophy knock out match played at the Dhruv Pandove stadium here on Tuesday.
Brief scores: Delhi (1st innings): 319 all out (W. Victor 118, Manav Sharma 75; Parshant 4 for 98, Madan Mohan 2 for 20); Kerala (1st innings): 159 for 2 (S. B. Sharma 60 n.o., Rohan 71 n.o., Tushar 2 for 32). — OSR

Selection trials
LUDHIANA: Trials to select the Rest of Punjab basketball teams (men and women) will be conducted at Guru Nanak Stadium here on December 1 at 2 p.m. Entries close with Mr Teja Singh Dhaliwal, honorary general secretary, Punjab Basketball Association, on November 30 at Ludhiana.
The selected players will take part in the 57th Senior National Basketball Championship to be held at Jaipur from December 28 to January 4, 2007. — OSR

Michael Vaughan
Melbourne:
Michael Vaughan will make a much-awaited return to competitive cricket on Wednesday, fuelling speculation about his chances of playing for England at some stage in the ongoing Ashes series.
Vaughan will play for an England Academy XI against a Western Australia second XI in a one-day game in South Perth, which will be his first outing since May, a report in the Australian Press said. — PTI

B’ball tourney
KAKIRA (CHAMBA): Sai Hostel, Dharamsala, clinched the women’s basketball trophy defeating Sirmour 49-19 while Kangra bagged the men’s basketball trophy routing Mandi 89-67 in the three-day 29th state-level basketball championship. Ms Sunki and Mr Rashpal were declared the sportspersons of the championship. — OC

Handball trials
KURUKSHETRA: Trials to select men and women probables for Haryana State Handball Championship will be held at Dronacharya Stadium here on Wednesday. The three-day Haryana State Handball Championship would be held at Bahrana, from Dec 1. — OC

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