Dravid recalled, Irfan dropped
Back to the Wall?
Pakistan close in on victory
Paes-Black falter at final hurdle
Rs 3,073cr allocated to Sports Ministry
Chennai, July 6
The All-India Senior Selection Committee, which met at the MA Chidambaram Stadium to pick the 30 probables for the elite top-eight tournament to be held in South Africa during September 2009, however decided to ignore the likes of Irfan Pathan and Robin Uthappa.
A veteran of 333 ODIs, Dravid has not featured in India’s ODI squad since playing his last one dayer against Australia in Nagpur in 2007. Senior cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, who had opted out of the just-concluded West Indies tour, returns to the side as do the injured duo of Virender Sehwag and Zaheer Khan.
Hard-hitting Delhi batsman Virat Kohli, Bengal stumper Wriddhiman Saha, Tamil Nadu’s R Ashiwin and Murali Vijay also found a place in the list of probables.
UP pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar, lanky Rajasthan medium pacer Pankaj Singh and the Mumbai duo of Ajinkya Rahane and Dhawal Kulkarni also found mention in the list.
Back to the Wall?
Chandigarh, July 6
But one thing is clear, given his stature as a senior pro, the 36-year-old is bound to make the team to South Africa because a senior player like him cannot be called for training camps and not be included in the team. His inclusion, pundits would say, is bound to lend stability to the middle order.
A veteran of 333 ODIs, Dravid did struggle in the last two years in the ODI format where in 14 matches he could muster just 284 runs at an average of 25.81 before being shown the door, temporary as it now seems.
What message do the national selectors plan to send out to younger players by inducting Dravid in the list of prabables? Is there no player among the youngsters who can lend stability to the middle order in the Champions Trophy? His inclusion probably follows the recent struggle of Indian batsmen against short-pitched bowling, brutally shown up in the ICC World Twenty20 where Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma, Gautam Gambhir and Yusuf Pathan were troubled by bouncers from the West Indian and English fast bowlers. The problem continued in the subsequent ODI series in the West Indies and Dravid is probably one of the best batsmen against short-pitched deliveries among contemporary Indian cricketers.
Of course, Dravid’s credentials as a player can never be doubted as he averages 39.49 from 333 games with a strike-rate of 71.22 and is the third Indian to accumulate more than 10,000 runs in ODIs. He is also not out of form as he showed during IPL-II where, playing for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, he scored 271 runs at a strike-rate of 115.81 for the team which finished runners-up.
Pakistan close in on victory
Galle, July 6
Pakistan bowled out the hosts for 217 and then finished the third day on 71 for two - just 97 runs shy of their victory target having lost the wickets of Khurram Manzoor and Younis. Salman Butt was unbeaten on 28 with first-innings centurion Yousuf on 12 with the tourists closing in on a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
The 17-year-old Aamer followed up on his impressive first innings performance (3-74) by capturing the key wickets of Paranavitana (49), Jayawardene (0) and Sangakkara (14) as the tourists took control.
Aamer went wicketless during a rain-shortened morning session but swung the ball both ways in the afternoon to reduce Sri Lanka to 101-5. The debut-making teenager finished with figures of 3-38 from 11 overs and a match haul of six for 112. — PTI
Sri Lanka (1st innings): 292
Pakistan (1st innings): 342
Sri Lanka (2nd innings)
Herath lbw b Younis 15
Warnapura c Younis b Gul 0
Paranavitana c Akmal b Aamer 49
Sangakkara c Akmal b Aamer 14
Jayawardene c Akmal b Aamer 0
Samaraweera c Misbah b Ajmal 34
Dilshan c Manzoor b Younis 22
Mathews c Butt b Rauf 27
Kulasekara lbw b Ajmal 25
Thushara not out 15
Mendis b Ajmal 1
Extras (lb 7, w 1, nb 7) 15
Total: (all out; 56.2 overs) 217
Fall of wickets:1-0, 2-68, 3-86, 4-88, 5-101, 6-138, 7-156, 8-191,9-211,10-217.
Bowling: Aamer 11-2-38-3, Gul 10-2-62-1, Rauf 13-14-1,Younis 10-1-27-2, Ajmal 12.2-0-34-3.
Pakistan (2nd innings)
Manzoor c Jayawardene b Mendis 15
Butt batting 28
Younis lbw b Mathews 3
Yousuf batting 12
Extras: (b 12, w 1) 13
Total: (2 wickets; 19 overs) 71
Fall of wickets: 1-36, 2-39.
Bowling: Kulasekara 5-1-14-0, Thushara 4-0-9-0, Mathews 4-0-13-1, Mendis 5-0-17-1, Herath 1-0-6-0.
London, July 6
Paes was on course to bag his third SW19 crown after grabbing a 5-2 lead in the first set but unrelenting unforced errors severely dented their chances, giving rival easy chance to claw their way back. Paes and Black began on a confident note and broke their opponents twice -- fifth and seventh game - to race to a 5-2 lead.
But capitalizing on the top seed’s unforced errors, Knowles and his German partner changed the complexion of the match by wining five consecutive games. With the momentum in their favour, Knowles and Groenefeld continued their aggressive play and seized the initiative early in the second set, breaking Paes and then holding their own serve to take a 3-0 lead. From there on the set went with serves and although Paes and Black tried hard for a comeback, it was not to be their day as their opponents put on a clinical performance to win their first mixed doubles Grand Slam title together. — PTI
We thought we had seen everything when Roger Federer lost in the greatest final in Wimbledon history 12 months ago, but the Swiss returned to Centre Court to once again win the world’s most famous tennis tournament. Winning the title he needed to beat Pete Sampras’s all-time record of 14 Grand Slam victories, Federer beat Andy Roddick 5-7, 7-6, 7-6, 3-6, 16-14 after a final set of unbearable tension. Roddick had been unbroken in all his previous 37 service games until the American mishit a forehand on the final point to give Federer the record he has pursued for so long.
At the post-match presentation ceremony Roddick gestured to Sampras and said: “Sorry, Pete, I tried to hold him off.” The world No 6, who had lost two previous finals here to Federer in 2004 and 2005, might have been celebrating his own victory had he not let slip a 6-2 lead in the first tie-break, having already won the first set.
Roddick refused to buckle after losing the second and third sets, recovered to level the match and in the final set showed remarkable mental strength to hold serve nine times in a row to stay in the match. The only performance to match Roddick’s was that of Mirka, Federer’s heavily pregnant wife, who showed barely a sign of stress. Federer wept uncontrollably in Melbourne at the start of the year when Nadal beat him in a Grand Slam final for the third time in less than a year.
However, since announcing the imminent birth of his first child and marrying, Federer has won the French Open, the last jewel missing from his Grand Slam crown, and reclaimed the trophy dearest to his heart. He is only the fourth man in the Open era to win the French Open and Wimbledon in the same year and will today reclaim the world No 1 ranking from Nadal.
The final was a compelling contrast of styles, evident from the moment the two men walked on court, Federer in his cool military-style jacket, long trousers and head band, Roddick in regulation shirt, shorts and cap.
Rs 3,073cr allocated to Sports Ministry
New Delhi, July 6 The budget for the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has been increased by Rs 1,480 crore than what was proposed in the interim budget presented before the Lok Sabha elections. Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee proposed to increase the allocation for the 2010 CWG from Rs 2,112 crore in the interim budget to Rs 3,472 crore. The CWG funds will be spent on SAI stadia renovation, upgradation and creation of venues, furnishing of the venues and preparation of teams. Besides, Rs 16.75 crore has been earmarked as against Rs 5.75 crore sanctioned earlier this year for anti-doping activities which will include setting up of National Dope Test Laboratory (NDTL), National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) and also the WADA. Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan and National Service Schemes have also been benefitted by the budget bagging Rs 102 crore and Rs 93 crore respectively against the previous sums of Rs 88.68 crore and Rs 61.94 crore. There is only marginal hike for awards and other sports related promotional schemes.
New Delhi, July 6
The budget for the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has been increased by Rs 1,480 crore than what was proposed in the interim budget presented before the Lok Sabha elections. Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee proposed to increase the allocation for the 2010 CWG from Rs 2,112 crore in the interim budget to Rs 3,472 crore.
The CWG funds will be spent on SAI stadia renovation, upgradation and creation of venues, furnishing of the venues and preparation of teams.
Besides, Rs 16.75 crore has been earmarked as against Rs 5.75 crore sanctioned earlier this year for anti-doping activities which will include setting up of National Dope Test Laboratory (NDTL), National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) and also the WADA.
Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan and National Service Schemes have also been benefitted by the budget bagging Rs 102 crore and Rs 93 crore respectively against the previous sums of Rs 88.68 crore and Rs 61.94 crore. There is only marginal hike for awards and other sports related promotional schemes. — PTI
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