Aussies swept away in Rasool wind
Shocked wrestling fraternity hope to get decision revoked
England, Kiwis in must-win tie but all eyes on WI-Oz match
Pervez says he can shine in IPL, hopes to play for India
McCullum, bowlers help Kiwis level T20 series vs England
IABF writes to Sports Secy, seeks end to SAI letters to AIBA
After shining this Ranji season, Rishi looks up to
Roger Federer welcomes return of Nadal
History, intrigue awaits as Manchester United comes to Ronaldo’s town
Aussies swept away in Rasool wind
Chennai, February 12
Rasool wreaked havoc in his three spells as he helped Board President's XI bowl out the visiting side for a modest 241 in 88.3 overs on the opening day at the Guru Nanak College ground.
The youngster did expose the now familiar weakness of the Australian batsmen against spin bowling and also presented Chief Selector Sandeep Patil and Co with an option beyond Ravichandran Ashwin and Harbhajan Singh in the off-spin department.
It could not have been a better birthday gift for the immensely talented cricketer from the valley, who recorded his career-best figures a day before his 24th birthday. Rasool did not try anything extraordinary in the 28.3 overs that he sent down during the day as he deceived the batsmen with flighted deliveries and also got appreciable turn from the slow track.
His seven scalps included top-order players like regular Test opener Ed Cowan, stand-in captain and wicketkeeper Matthew Wade and all-rounder Steve Smith.
Australian openers Cowan and Usman Khawaja (32) added 77 runs for the opening stand before Rasool made inroads into the opposition line-up.
Left-handed Cowan, top-scored with 58 but was done in when he tried to play a cut shot and was snapped up by Parthiv Patel behind stumps.
Wade, who is in-charge of the side as Michael Clarke and Shane Watson are yet to arrive, hit couple of sixes of the bowling of leggie Sarabjit Ladda on his way to 35 but misjudged the length of a flighted delivery from Rasool.
Wade gave him the charge only to be holed at long-off by substitute fielder Kamlesh Makvana. After getting two wickets in his first spell, Rasool came back for his second spell to dismiss Smith, who was looking solid during his innings of 41. It was delivery that had bounce as well as turn as the right-hander gloved one to Mandeep Singh at forward short leg.
Smith was the sixth man to be dismissed for 198 and then Peyer Siddle (22) and James Pattinson (9) again had a partnership of 30 runs. With tail-enders frustrating the Indian bowlers, Board President's XI skipper Abhinav Mukund again reverted back to Rasool, who then polished off the tail with a lot of finesse.
First, it was the dogged Siddle who gave a catch to Mandeep Singh and it was followed by Pattinson's hoick which was collected by Ladda to give the youngster his fifth wicket.
The sixth wicket came when Jackson Bird played to a wrong line and was bowled while the innings was terminated when last man Ashton Agar was stumped. — PTI
Australia 1st Inngs
Cowan c P Patel b Rassol 58
Usman c Jadhav b Ladda 32
Wade c Makwana b Rassol 35
Steve c Mandeep b Rassol 41
Maxwell c P Patel b Binny 0
Hendriques c Robin b Ladda 16
Siddle c Mandeep b Rassol 22
Pattinson c Ladda b Rassol 9
Lyon not out 12
Bird b Rassol 1
Ashton st Pn Patel b Rassol 0
Total: (all out; 88.3 ov) 241
Fall of wickets: 1-77, 2-109, 3-167, 4-169, 5-192, 6-198, 7-228, 8-229, 9-237
Bowling: Shami 14-3-50-0, Awana 10-3-17-0, Binny 10-2-29-1, Rassol 28.3-9-45-7 Ladda 26-3-90-2
Patiala, February 12
Thousands of budding wrestlers toiling hard in hundreds of akharas (wrestling schools) in this part of the country are in shock following the news that the International Olympic Committee has recommended that wrestling be dropped from the programme of the 2020 Games. Thousands of youth, have been following a strict regime, with a dream that one day they would bag medals for the country now are uncertain about their future.
“It is shocking and not good for the game as wrestling was one of the oldest games and in India, it is a religion. It will hurt the prospects of many players and also take away opportunities from the country to win medals in international events”, said London silver medalist Sushil Kumar.
“I am still hopeful that wrestling continues to be a part of the international programme”, he added.
Indian wrestling, which dates back to 5th century B.C, has its roots in the Indian style of wrestling, which means mud bouts. Numerous akharahas in the country have given some very great Indian wrestlers in the past, but due to the government apathy, these akharhas are slowly getting dry and have come to the point of extinction.
The decision to exclude wrestling, will the be last nail in coffin as over 100 akharas and their players start training at an early age of nearly 8 years. Indian wrestlers are generally known to play local matches in dug earthen pits and they have been doing the same from the past many decades. “Almost all wrestlers in the country who have represented the country are a product of an akharha and started their bouts in the mud", said Harmail Singh, who runs one such akharhas. Wrestling Federation of India President Brij bhushan Saran Singh told The Tribune that it would be difficult decision for the IOC to shun out wrestling. “We will lobby for it as wrestling is one of the oldest sport and the entire world will oppose this decision of IOC”, Bhushan added.
Yogeshwar in shock
Sushil's childhood friend and London Olympics bronze medallist, Yogeshwar Dutt said the decision would be a "big setback" for the upcoming crop of wrestlers.
“I am extremely disappointed to hear the news. Wrestling has made India a force to reckon with in the Olympic arena and the IOC has dropped a worldwide famous sport from its list.
It's a shocking news to me," said Dutt. "What about the upcoming wrestlers? What about their future? Sushil won medals in Beijing and London and I won it in London too. We are targeting the 2016 Rio Olympics but there are other young wrestlers who are preparing for the next edition. What about them? They would become aimless after this sudden decision," added Dutt. Sushil's mentor and Dronacharya awardee coach Satpal Singh said the decision would shatter the dreams of many wrestlers who were aiming to make big in 2020 Olympics.
“It is unfortunate that such a decision has been taken.
Dreams of millions of budding wrestlers in the country would be shattered. The sport, after medals from Sushil and Yogeshwar, has become the heartbeat of the country," Satpal said.
“We have conquered every feat in this sport be it World Championships, Asiad, Commonwealth Games. We were aiming a rich haul at the next Olympics.” — PTI
Chennai, February 12
“It was fantastic that the wicket did turn. Because at the end of the day, we need to practice against the turning ball. It was almost as though the most dangerous shot was the forward defence. You had to find a way to get to the other end and get in a position to score runs," said Cowan after the first day's play of the two-day warm-up game.
“If you're propped on the crease defending, then you're playing into the spinners' hands. I think the guys who scored runs found a way to actually hit the ball, rather than just defend. They were trying to put pressure on the bowlers. The guys would probably evaluate that their shots were on but the execution probably wasn't as pure as they'd have liked. “Usman tried to sweep and unfortunately, it didn't come off for him. I played a few. You can't sweep every ball, it becomes predictable. You got to know the line and length. I played a couple, Matthew Wade played the sweep pretty well.
The top three played the sweep. It's not a question of sweeping every ball, because then you could get into as much trouble as not sweeping the ball, I think," he explained.
Heaping praise on young Jammu and Kashmir all-rounder Parveez Rasool, who ended with figures of seven for 45, Cowan said, "He bowled with good control, got some good turn. Anyone who can take seven wickets can obviously ball. He held it up nicely, he was excellent." Left-handed Cowan top-scored with 58 today but he did not think he sealed his spot as an opener in the Australian team.
“It didn't feel like I needed to seal the deal. The talk is in the press and not in the changing room. From a personal point of view, I've been playing first-class for a long time. So just to get back in the mindset of being able to bat for a long time and to get the rhythm of batting, it was important.
“I was happy that I could not only spend time at the crease, but also have a positive time at the crease and get some runs at the end of the day," he said.
Asked to compare the conditions here with that of Down Under, Cowan said, "It was obviously very different. The big thing today was there was significant reverse swing early, in 12th or 13th over. As an opening batsman, that's something foreign, I guess. Then the slow turn increased through the day. It was good to spend some time in the middle." He added that reverse swing proved to be very good for the Aussies.
“Very good for us. Our guys know how to reverse the ball at good pace. The faster you ball, the harder the reverse swing is to play. I think that will play a part tomorrow. — PTI
Mumbai, February 12
However, the match could prove to be inconsequential if the second-placed West Indies stun table-toppers Australia in their day game tomorrow at the MIG ground here. The 2009 World Cup finalists are tied at four points with England and the team that wins can harbour hopes of reaching the final by virtue of net run rate, provided Australia maintain their winning streak in the tournament.
England will try to be in the hunt and keep the ambition of its title defence alive, while New Zealand would be kicking itself for missing out against West Indies and throwing the last spot open. "So now we have really opened this Super Six stage up, which has given England another sniff and West Indies are now in the hunt. It is going to come down to the last game and it is going to about some big matches," Suzie Bates had said after their 48-run loss to West Indies yesterday.
Proteas to play for pride against SL eves
CUTTACK: Wooden spooners South Africa will take on Sri Lanka in an inconsequential Super Six match of the ICC Women's World Cup at the Barabati Stadium. Both teams have no chance whatsoever of making it to the final and will be playing for pride when the lock horns in their concluding Super Six engagement.
As of now, Sri Lanka on two points are placed fifth in the league table while South Africa have flattered to deceive at the Super Six stage having lost all their matches. — PTI
Chennai, February 12
“Firstly thanks to Allah and the the selectors who have given me this opportunity. It's a great achievement for me to do so well against a team like Australia so by God’s grace if I get more chances, I'll look to do my best," he said after his effort of seven for 45 which led to Australia being bowled out for just 241.
"I haven't signed for an IPL team yet but hopefully if that happens I can do well and maybe play for India too," said 23-year-old Rasool, who recently became first cricketer from the Kashmir Valley to be picked for India 'A' team for a warm-up game against England. He expressed satisfaction at being able to deceive Australian Test players Matthew Wade and Steven Smith leading to their dismissal today.
"Flight is my strength. The dismissals of Smith and Wade brought me a lot of happiness as I was able to deceive them in the flight," he said.
He did not forget to praise his coach of his formative years and said, "I'm from Brijbehara in the Anantnag district of Kashmir and my coach there was Abdul Qayyum who has played a good level of cricket and I learnt the game from him before I played junior cricket or my state." "I played junior cricket at all levels. My father and brother have played cricket. My brother Asif has played Ranji trophy too," he said when asked about his background.
Asked if he has become a role model for youngsters in Anantnag, he said, "Definitely, I'll work hard and do my best." Rasool also gave credit to former India captain and left-arm spinner Bishen Singh Bedi for the success so far in his fledging career.
“I have to credit him for all the success I have achieved as a bowler. He always advised me to not be afraid of tossing the ball up to look for wickets. He has helped me a lot in using the flight of the ball as my weapon," he said. “He told me not to worry about experimenting with a doosra.” — PTI
Hamilton, February 12
McCullum had anchored New Zealand's innings to power them to 192 for six with 74 runs from 38 balls as he plundered England's attack for six boundaries and five sixes.
Mitchell McClenaghan, who took two wickets in successive balls in the second over, Trent Boult and Ian Butler then put the power-packed England batting line-up under constant pressure with aggressive pace bowling.Butler finished with two for nine from four overs, while McClenaghan had two for 24. James Franklin mopped up the tail to finish with 4-15 off 3.3 overs.
Jos Buttler produced a cameo of 54 but received little help as England were dismissed for 137 in 19.3 overs. England had won the first match at Eden Park in Auckland on Saturday by 40 runs, which was their sixth successive victory over New Zealand in the shortest format of the game and McCullum said he was pleased his side had put that behind them.
"It was good. The other night was disappointing and England blew us off the park," McCullum said in a televised interview.
"The boys are very happy with the performance (and) ... to bounce back from the other day. We knew we were short (on Saturday) and today was a really good performance from us."
Unlike Auckland, openers Hamish Rutherford and Martin Guptill kept the run rate above nine before Rutherford feathered a catch to Buttler off Luke Wright for 40 to leave the hosts well placed at 75-1 in the ninth over. The run rate however dropped markedly after Rutherford fell as England's bowlers varied their length and pace with Wright and Jade Dernbach adept at disguising their slower deliveries. Guptill (47), Ross Taylor (four) and Colin Munro (seven) all fell when they failed to pick slower deliveries and lofted mistimed shots into the deep, while Grant Elliott (four) was bowled by a Dernbach delivery. — Reuters
Guptill c Hales b Tredwell 47
Rutherford c Buttler b Wright 40
McCullum c Lumb b Dernbach 74
Taylor c Bairstow b Wright 4
Munro c Bairstow b Dernbach 7
Elliott b Dernbach 4
Franklin not out 6
McCullum not out 0
Total: (6 wkts, 20 ovs) 192
Fall of wickets: 1-75 2-105 3-124 4-139 5-154 6-188
Bowling: Tredwell 2-0-20-1, Broad 4-0-53-0, Finn 4-0-33-0, Dernbach 4-0-38-3, Wright 4-0-24-2, Patel 2-0-20-0
Lumb b N McCullum 17
Hales b McClenaghan 5
Wright c Guptill b McClenaghan 0
Bairstow c McClenaghan b Butler 8
Morgan c Munro b Butler 13
Buttler c Taylor b Franklin 54
Patel run out 6
Broad c Guptill b Franklin 1
Tredwell b Franklin 22
Finn not out 5
Dernbach c Butler b Franklin 0
Total: (all out, 19.3 ovs) 137
Fall of wickets: 1-9 2-9 3-24 4-43 5-47 6-62 7-80 8-115
Bowling: Boult 4-0-40-0, McClenaghan 4-0-24-2, Butler 4-0-9-2, N. McCullum 3-0-26-1, Franklin 3.3-0-15-4, Elliott 1-0-20-0
New Delhi, February 12
A furious AIBA has apparently warned the IABF that letters from SAI seeking some clarification or the other would only make things worse for the Indian body, which was last year provisionally suspended due to the IOC's ban on the IOA and "possible manipulation" in its September elections.
“We have written to Sports Secretary P K Deb now because SAI's letters have caused a lot of problem for us. For AIBA, a letter from SAI amounts to government intervention because it functions under the Sports Ministry,” an IABF source said. The Ministry refused to attach importance to request for government's intervention terming it as “not a recognised body". — PTI
After shining this Ranji season, Rishi looks up to IPL-VI
Chandigarh, February 12
It is his ability to swing the ball both ways that makes him the most dangerous bowler for his side. When it comes to batting, he wields the willow like a seasoned batsman. Facing challenges is one thing he likes the most. Be it in the four day format or the shorter version of the game. The 22-year-old has done well by emerging in the top ten wicket-taking bowlers of the Ranji season for last two Ranji season. Rishi bagged 36 wickets in eight matches with a best of 6/63 (vs Jharkhand) and at an economy of just 2.64 before his team bowed out of the competition. In 2011-12, Dhawan was the second highest wicket-taker in the Ranji Trophy with 27 wickets in six matches and a best of 5/60.
“This has been a very successful year for me. I had worked hard before the start of the season and was determined to do better than the last year. Thankfully, the results have been better this year,” he said.
The Mandi all-rounder is not content with this and wants to achieve more. “I want to increase my pace and work on my strength to do even better,” he says. The medium pacer has been consistently bowling around 132-134 kmph for last two seasons and he reckons that there is much more he can do with the ball.
Unfortunately, the right arm medium pacer has got very little exposure on the top level and that is proving a hindrance in realizing his true potential. Though his selection in the Mumbai Indians recently has come as a big boost especially when he has been looking for more exposure. “I hope to rub shoulders with some of the big names in the cricket. Mumbai Indians has lot of star players and I hope to learn the finer nuances of the game from them,” the 22-year-old said.
It is the raw talent in him, be it with the ball or bat that has attracted one of the top IPL franchisee to show interest in him. If Rishi can bowl consistently well, he can shine with bat as well. In eight matches this year he has scored three centuries against Kerela (102*), Jharkhand (128) and Assam (114*) under trying circumstances. His marathon 340 against Railways in Cooch Behar Under-19 playoff tie three years ago is still his finest knock.
The consistency with which he has delivered shows that batting is something that comes naturally to him. “It is not that I focus on batting only or bowling alone. I love both and enjoy batting and bowling.”
Rotterdam, February 12
Top seed Federer, defending his 2012 trophy said he has arrived relaxed and eager as he plays for the first time since losing a tight Australian Open semi-final to Andy Murray, then taking time off with his family in his homes in Dubai and Switzerland.
"I saw a few pictures of Rafa, last week," said Federer, who joked: "I see he's still a left-hander - and his shirts looked good."
But beyond the obvious natural curiosity, the 31-year-old with 17 Grand Slam titles has plenty on his own plate as he begins a run of events this week to be followed by the Dubai Open and the Indian Wells Masters next month in California. “I'm happy to see him back and playing on the Tour,” said two-time Rotterdam champion. — PTI
Chandigarh, February 12
The world's most expensive player has won over the Bernabeu faithful with some breathtaking performances and will have the perfect opportunity to showcase his talents against the Premier League leaders.
The managerial battle between Real's Jose Mourinho and United's Alex Ferguson is another fascinating aspect of the tie but Ronaldo's bid to destroy his old team mates should take centre stage as two of the world's biggest clubs lock horns.
Seen as a more mature and less selfish player, Ronaldo has a chance to live up to comparisons with former Real great Alfredo Di Stefano as he faces United for the first time since the club paid 94 million euros (80.4 million pounds) to lure him to Spain in 2009. Now 28, he made his name in England after joining from Sporting as an 18-year-old in 2003 and went on to win the World Player of the Year award five years later. He has been in scintillating form since the turn of the year and warmed up for the United game with a hat-trick in a 4-1 destruction of Sevilla, earning a rousing ovation from the home faithful when he was substituted late on.
It is a significant turnaround from a difficult patch earlier in the season when he raised eyebrows and prompted talk of an exit from the club by telling reporters he was unhappy "for professional reasons”.
Ronaldo said it was not about money and he and the club now appear to have put it all behind them so he can focus on helping Real secure the 10th European crown that has eluded them since their last triumph in 2002. “The Champions League is very special at Madrid because we want to win a 10th European title," Ronaldo said in an interview with British daily The Sun. "For me it is the pinnacle. "There are so many memorable matches that remain in the minds of the players and the fans. I want to make my contribution, I want to leave my mark."
Ronaldo spent six seasons with United and scored 118 goals in 292 games.
At Real he has netted 182 in 179 matches, a far higher goals-per-game ratio than Di Stefano's 308 in 396 appearances in the 1950s and 60s when he helped the club to five successive European titles. Wednesday's match also renews the intriguing rivalry between Mourinho and Ferguson who have struck up a friendship over the years and are known to enjoy a glass of wine together.
West Brom stun Liverpool 2-0
West Bromwich Albion completed a stunning League double over Liverpool with a 2-0 win at Anfield after Steven Gerrard missed a chance to put the home side ahead with a second-half penalty. Gareth McAuley headed home in the 80th minute, with what was only the Baggies' second attempt on goal in a lop-sided game, to break the deadlock and Romelu Lukaku doubled the tally. — Reuters