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Thursday, 3 January 2013

Former Oz captain Steve Waugh says replacing 'in form' Hussey tough job for selectors

Former captain Steve Waugh believes Australian selectors would find it tough to replace retiring Michael Hussey, who has been in superb form of late, and added that it would be even more difficult than finding an alternate for retired Ricky Ponting.

Waugh said the selectors wouldn't have had envisaged Hussey's retirement, adding that the selectors were still banking on him as the backbone of the team, News.com.au reports.

SA vs NZ: New Zealand fight back but face defeat

Brendon McCullum and Dean Brownlie hit half-centuries as New Zealand fought back on the second day of the first Test against South Africa at Newlands on Thursday.

New Zealand were 169 for four in their second innings at the close, still 133 short of avoiding an innings defeat. McCullum made 51 and Brownlie was undefeated on 69.

They were still likely to lose the match but it was a much better showing by the tourists after a calamitous first day during which they were bowled out for 45 and then leaked runs at almost four an over.

We have to improve as a team, admits MS Dhoni

Captain MS Dhoni on Thursday admitted that India will have to improve as a team after the hosts slumped to yet another series loss at home here on Thursday.
An insipid India produced a pathetic display as arch-rivals Pakistan thrashed the hosts by 85 runs in the second one-dayer to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series at the Eden Gardens. 
Even though Dhoni praised his bowlers for restricting Pakistan to 250, he came hard on India's famed batting line-up which has been struggling for sometime now and has been largely responsible for the team's forgettable results in recent times.
"I think the bowlers brought us back in the game. I think when we went in to bat, we lost too many wickets. In the last 30 overs we needed 180, and the key was to have wickets in hand but we never were in a position," Dhoni said at the post-match presentation ceremony.

Pakistan Cricket Board wants Ashes-like series with India

Stating that relations between the two neighbouring nations have improved, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Zaka Ashraf on Thursday said he wants an Ashes-like cricket series with arch-rivals India. "We have thought of it. The idea has been floated with the BCCI if an Ashes like series can be played between India and Pakistan every year or alternate year," Ashraf told reporters here. "The series can be named either after (Mohammad Ali) Jinnah or (Mahatma) Gandhi."
He said the level of understanding between both the countries, even at the Prime Minister level, has improved and the two governments are moving in a positive way. "Even the trade relations have improved now. India has its own economic interest in this and so has Pakistan. It is mutually beneficial," the PCB chief said. 

India's Shamshuddin in ICC panel of umpires

C Shamshuddin was the lone Indian among the five new third umpires appointed to the ICC's international panel announced on Thursday.
The 42-year-old Shamshuddin made his international debut in the India-England Twenty20 match in December last year. After that he stood in the Twenty20 International between India and Pakistan in the same month. 
The Emirates International Panel of Umpires comprises umpires who are nominated by their home boards and accredited by the ICC. The umpires on this panel can be assigned to all three international formats of the game.

Mahela Jayawardene hits first away half-century in 3 years

Captain Mahela Jayawardene hit his first Test half-century on tour in over three years to bolster injury-hit Sri Lanka's first innings in the third Test against Australia.
In a welcome return to form after fellow 10,000 Test run-scorer Kumar Sangakkara's enforced absence with a fractured finger, Jayawardene led from the front for his embattled team after two heavy Test defeats in Hobart and Melbourne. It was Jayawardene's first half-century in Tests outside Sri Lanka in 27 innings since a knock of 275 against India in Ahmedabad in November 2009. 

Pakistan's tour of South Africa starts Jan 25

Pakistan will travel to South Africa for a series comprising three Tests, five ODI's and two Twenty20s later this month.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Wednesday that the two-month long tour will start January 25 with a four-day match against South African Invitation XI at Buffalo Park and will conclude March 24 with the fifth and final ODI match at Willowmoore Park, Benoni. 
The teams for the series will be picked after the end of the tour to India for a brief limited-over series. PCB is yet to announce the date for the team's departure for the South Africa tour.

India ODI squad for England to be picked on January 6

The Indian squad for the five-match ODI series against England, starting in west Indian city of Rajkot on January 11, will be picked here on Sunday, a Board Of Control For Cricket In India (BCCI) release said on Thursday.
The selection committee headed by chief selector, Sandeep Patil will meet after the conclusion of the third ODI between India and Pakistan on January 6 in the capital. 
England, after winning the four-Test series 2-1 and drawing the two-match Twenty20 International had left for home for Christmas and New Year.

Sachin Tendulkar is a great ambassador for game: Intikhab Alam

Former Pakistan cricket captain Intikhab Alam on Thursday described batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar as a 'great ambassador' of cricket and said the player should be left alone to decide on his retirement from Test cricket. "Sachin Tendulkar has done wonders for India. I still remember a 16-year-old Sachin playing his first match against us in Peshawar. He hit couple of sixes off Abdul Quadir. Even at that time you could say the guy had lot of talent and over the years the way he has carried himself, he has been a great ambassador for India," Alam said here.

Controversy surrounds Javed Miandad's India visit

A lawmaker of the Congress Party on Thursday said he was not in favour of former Pakistan cricket skipper Javed Miandad being given a visa to visit India for the ongoing one-day match series, saying it will hurt the sentiments of the people of the country for he shares close family ties with India's most wanted gangster-turned-terrorist Dawood Ibrahim.

Congress Member of Parliament Jagdambika Pal said Dawood Ibrahim is considered to be the mastermind of all terrorist attacks in India.

Aus vs SL: Sri Lanka all out for 294 at stumps

Sri Lanka were all out for 294 at the close after being sent in to bat on the opening day of the third and final Test against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday.
Lahiru Thirimanne top scored with 91, while Jackson Bird took four wickets for 41.

Scoreboard at close on the opening day of the third and final Test between Australia and Sri Lanka at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday:

Pakistan beat India by 85 runs, win series

India on Thursday lost the three-match ODI series to Pakistan, failing to reach the latter's 250-run total by 85 runs in the second one-day international in Kolkata's Eden Gardens.

Pakistan had set India comfortable 251-run target to reach at Kolkata's Eden Gardens, but India just managed to score 165.

Only Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni stood tall among the Indian batting ruin, scoring an unbeaten 54 in an attempt to reach Pakistan's total of 251.

For Pakistan, off-spinner Saeed Ajmal and fast bowler Junaid Khan claimed three wickets each to stop India in its tracks.