Saturday, January 31, 2009

Australian Media Criticizing Australian Team after Losing No. 1 ODI Spot to South Africa

As South Africa has become the no. 1 team in ODI cricket, replacing world champion Australia, the change of dominance in world cricket is now pretty clear. For over a decade, Australia has dominated world cricket in the presence of former greats like Mark Waugh, Steve Waugh, Mark Taylor, Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and many others. However, those golden days are now gone and Australian team is now going through a formation period following the retirement of a number of great players over the last couple of years.

Australia has just lost the ODI and Test series to South Africa at home. Most importantly, the ease with which South Africa outperformed the Australians with a depleted bowling attack would surely raise some questions concerning the future of Australian cricket that Cricket Australian will have to deal with in the coming years. Following the 4-1 series defeat to South Africa, Australian media has come down hard on the Australian team, while finding out the reasons behind Australia’s recent poor performances. They are now predicting that Australia might lose the no. 2 spot to India very soon in world cricket.

Related article:

PTI News

Friday, January 30, 2009

Sri Lanka vs India 2nd ODI 2009 Live Score and Updates

India won by 15 runs.

Live Updates

Sri Lanka is batting and needs 257 Runs

49.2 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 241 all out.

Sri Lanka needs 20 runs to win from 6 balls.

49 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 237/8

47 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 232/7

45 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 217/6

Sri Lanka needs more 60 runs to win from 42 balls.

43 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 197/5

42.2 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 187/5

Sri Lanka needs 71 runs more from 48 balls to win the match.

42 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 186/4

40 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 166/4

38 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 152/4

36 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 142/4

Partnership: 100 runs from 160 balls.

Sri Lanka needs 123 runs more to win from 96 balls.

34 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 134/3 Jayawardene scored 49th ODI fifty.

32 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 121/3

30 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 115/3

28 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 109/3

26 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 102/3 Sri Lankan batsmen is trying to make strong come back with this match.

24.1 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 94/3

23 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 87/3 India needs some quick wickets to put some extra pressure over Sri Lanka team.

22 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 86/3

21 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 78/3

20 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 72/3

19 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 71/3

18 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 64/3

17 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 60/3

15 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 58/3

14 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 51/3

13 Overs: Sri Lanks is now 49/3

12 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 47/3 Sri Lankan batsmen are struggling hard to make score. Two consecutive maiden.

11 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 47/3 Ishant Sharma took a maiden over.

10 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 47/3

9 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 46/3

7.3 Overs: Sri Lanka is now 36/3

India is batting

50 Overs: India is 256/9

49.4 Overs: India is 256/8

49 Overs: India is 252/7

48 Overs: India is 243/7

47 Overs: India is 239/7

46 Overs: India is 228/7

45 Overs: India is 224/7

44.3 Overs: India is 223/7 MS Dhoni got catch out by Maharoof. He played patient inning of 23.

India has one more over left to be completed batting power play.

44 Overs: India is 221/6 Muralitharan took a maiden over.

43 Overs: India is 221/6 India has two more overs left to finish power play.

Zaheer Khan has come to bat.

42 Overs: India is 219/6 Yusuf Pathan got run out. He scored 21 runs from 28 balls.

41 Overs: India is 217/5 37 Partnership: runs from 47 balls.

India has taken batting power play (40-45).

40 Overs: India is 210/5

39 Overs: India is 206/5

38 Overs: India is 199/5 MS Dhoni is batting on 11 and Yusuf Pathan on 11.

37 Overs: India is 194/5

36 Overs: India is 192/5

35 Overs: India is 186/5 MS Dhoni is batting on 6 and Yusuf Pathan on 2.

34 Overs: India is 183/5

33.1 Overs: India is 180/5 just now Yuvraj Singh got out bu Kulasekara. He scored 66 runs.

33 Overs: India is 179/4 After losing top four wickets India is under huge pressure.

32 Overs: India is 174/4 Indian batsmen are struggling hard to make a chasing score. Yuvraj Singh is batting on 64 and MS Dhoni on 1.

Tea break

31 Overs: India is 168/3

30 Overs: India is 162/3

29 Overs: India is 158/3 Yuvraj Singh has scored his 38th ODI fifty. He his a boundary to reach his fifty score. He scored 51 runs from 74 balls.

28 Overs: India is 153/3

27.3 Overs: India is 151/3

25.3 Overs: India is 137/3 Ajantha Mendis fall in injury.

25 Overs: India is 137/3 Sri Lanka missed any easy opportunity of run out.

24 Overs: India is 135/3 Indian batsmen are now under huge pressure. Raina and Yuvraj Singh made 50 runs partnership from 70 balls in 4th wicket stand.

23 Overs: India is 131/3 it was a wonderful first over bowled by Muralitharan

Muralitharan has come to ball. He needs 2 more wickets to break the world record of Wasim Akram.

22 Overs: India is 130/3 Mahafoof shout for lbw appeal but it was not fruitful.

21 Overs: India is /3 Yuvraj Singh hit a magnificent six on this over. 11 runs come on this over. This over had been bowled by Ajantha Mendis.

20 Overs: India is 117/3

19.3 Overs: India is 116/3

15 Overs: India is 91/3

13 Overs: India is 85/3

12 Overs: India is 77/2

10 Overs: India is 63/2. Gambhir got out and India lost the second wicket.

9 Overs: India is 60/1

8 Overs: India is 57/1

7 Overs: India is 48/1. 9 runs came from the last over.

6 Overs: India ia 39/1. Good over for India. 10 runs came from it

5 Overs: India is 29/1

2.3 Overs: India is 13/1. Tendulkar gone.

2 Overs: India is 11/0

The second ODI between Sri Lanka and India will take place at the R.Premadasa Stadium, Colombo on 31 January 2009. The day/night match kicks off at 14:30 local time (09:00 GMT). Winning the first ODI at Dambulla, India is leading 1-0 in the series. Here, in this entry, we will be giving live score and updates of the match. So, be with us when the match starts.

Packed Cricket Schedules Increasing the Rate of Injuries among Cricketers

The ICC international calendar 2009 is packed with loads of cricket tournaments and series. No doubt, it would definitely increase the injury possibility among the cricketers. That is why, Cricket South Africa (CSA) has not allowed its centrally contracted players to take part in the Standard Bank Pro20 tournament for their respective franchises. CSA holds a control over the participation of the national team cricketers in the tournament. National team captain Graeme Smith and wicketkeeper Mark Boucher will not take part in the tournament due to their injuries. Pace bowlers, who are more likely to fall in injury due to bowling above a certain number of overs.

That is why, CSA ruled that the bowlers like Morné Morkel, Makhaya Ntini and Dale Steyn who played a big part during the Australia tour would only take part in the Standard Bank Pro20 tournament if their respective teams make it to the finals. Jacques Kallis will be allowed to take part only in the final, while AB de Villiers can play only the semi finals and the final matches of the tournament. Other national team players like Hashim Amla, JP Duminy, Neil McKenzie, Johan Botha, Herschelle Gibbs and Albie Morkel can participate in the whole tournament. I think, this is good move taken by CSA in order to protect the national team players from injuries.

Related article:

Dispatch

Famous Cricket Statistician Bill Frindall Passes Away at 69

Leaving the cricket world mourning, Bill Frindall, the famous statistician and scorer of BBC Test Match Special, has passed away at 69. He served BBC for 43 years, and earned fame as a specialist of cricket statistics and scorer. During his illustrious career, he wrote a number of statistical cricket books. He is also known as 'the Bearded Wonder' as he was named by fellow commentator Brian Johnston. Bill Frindall was suffering from Legionnaire's disease for a number of years until his death.

For his outstanding service to the sport, Frindall was honored with an MBE in 2004. Bill Frindall was always enthusiastic about cricket statistics and always liked to hear any questions regarding cricket statistics and tried to find the answers with all of his effort. Today, cricket statistics are very much organized and Frindall has a great role behind it. I pay my highest tribute to this great figure of cricket world.

Related article:

BBC

Lalit Modi Losing Power over Indian Cricket?

Lalit Modi has become an influential name of Indian cricket over the last few years. His power as a high BCCI official has stretched to world cricket too, though nothing is official. He is now the chairman of high-profile Indian Premier League (IPL) tournament which deals with million of dollars.

Well, Mr. Modi is now facing a huge challenge to keep his power intact in Indian cricket. In fact, he is struggling to keep his power in his home state Rajasthan where he is the head of the local cricket association. However, a change in the local government in Rajasthan has put Modi’s future as the head of Rajasthan Cricket Association in jeopardy. The new government and his rival group in the cricket association have called an election next month. Though this election, his rival party is aiming to bring an end to his tenure as the head of Rajasthan Cricket Association. Meanwhile, a number of complaints against Modi have been lodged and the investigation for the complaints would kick off very soon. Now, it is yet to see if he would be able to hold on to his place in Rajasthan Cricket Association as well as in BCCI in the years to come.

Related article:

Cricinfo

Cricket Chief of Zimbabwe Failed to Earn Australian Visa to Attend ICC Board Meeting

Peter Chingoka, chief of Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC), has failed to get Australia visa to attend a regular board meeting of ICC. The two-day board meeting will take place in Australia and he will not be able to attend the meeting. It has reported that Australian government refused him an entry visa to the country as Mr. Chingoka is linked with Robert Mugabe government in Zimbabwe. Wilfred Mukondiwa will represent Zimbabwe in the board meeting.

Zimbabwe cricket will be one of the agendas to be discussed in the general board meeting. Standard of cricket in Zimbabwe has been deteriorated over the last 6-7 years due to the illegal influence of Mugabe government on the cricket board. Players like Andy Flowers, Grant Flowers, Heath Streak, Stuart Carlisle and many others quit the international circuit as part of protest against the influence of Mugabe regime on the board. Many cricketers were even threatened by the board and the government. Many international cricketers are not out of the country. Above all, cricket in Zimbabwe has been a mess and Zimbabwe has not been playing test for a number of years now.

I think, ICC should take some serious initiatives to keep cricket away from politics in the country. Otherwise, it would bring anything good for the future of Zimbabwe cricket in the long run. Now, it is yet to see how soon Zimbabwe gets back their golden days in world cricket.

Related article:

Herald Sun

Michael Vaughan: Kevin Pietersen Can be No. 1 Batsman in the World

Former England captain Michael Vaughan has said that Kevin Pietersen can become no. 1 batsman in world cricket. Vaughan thinks that he would be amazed if Pietersen would not become the highest scorer in West Indies. England team is now touring West Indies and the first test of the series will kick off at Kingston on Wednesday.

Following a conflict with Coach Peter Moores, Pietersen stepped down as England captain earlier this month. Moores was also sacked by ECB on the same day Pietersen quit and England captaincy has been handed to senior batsman Andrew Strauss. Pietersen took over as England captain during last year’s home series against South Africa when Vaughan stepped down from captaincy after South Africa clinched the series with a match at hand. It is believed that Pietersen wanted Vaughan to be part of England team for the West Indies tour and this was perhaps one of those hot issues for which he had disagreement with Coach Peter Moores.

Vaughan thinks that Pietersen gives his best when he is under pressure and that is why, he is hoping to see the best of Pietersen in West Indies.

Related article:

Reuters

South Africa Becomes No. 1 in ICC ODI Ranking

Winning the fifth and the last ODI of the five-match series, South Africa clinched the ODI series 4-1, and thus, replacing Australia from the coveted no. 1 spot of ICC ODI ranking. South Africa might have failed to gain the no. 1 position in test cricket, but they have now done it in ODI. No doubt, it is a big achievement for South Africa. To many, this is another dent to Australia’s dominance in world cricket.

Batting first, South Africa scored 288 runs after loosing 6 wickets at the end of 50 overs. Opener Hamish Amla missed another century being dismissed three runs before reaching the landmark. AB de Villiers scored 60 off 71 balls, and Duminy played a fiery innings of 60 runs off 42 balls. James Hopes picked up 3 wickets for Australia. Chasing down the target, Australia never looked to be on the right track throughout their chase and they got all out for 249 runs with an over in hand. Highest 78 runs came from middle order batsman Michael Hussey’s willow, and wicketkeeper Brad Haddin 63 runs from 50 balls. In fact, Australia lost 4 wickets for 53 runs. Young pacer Lonwabo Tsotsobe picked up 4 wickets for the visitors. Hamish Amla was given the man of the match award, while Albie Morkel received the man of the series award.

Sri Lanka vs India 2nd ODI 2009: Preview and Live Score

Those who are interested to get the live score and updates of the second ODI between India and Sri Lanka can follow the link given below:

Sri Lanka vs India 2nd ODI 2009 Live Score and Updates

Confident India is going to take on host Sri Lanka on Saturday (31 January) at the R.Premadasa Stadium, Colombo in the second ODI of the five-match ODI series. India is leading 1-0 in the series with a 6-wicket victory in the first ODI at Dambulla. Host Sri Lanka would look to bounce back in the series winning the second match, while India will definitely try to stretch their lead in the series pulling off another victory in the second match. So, with both sides seem to be determined for win, the second ODI is expected to be a hard-fought affair between Sri Lanka and India.

Match: Sri Lanka vs India, Second ODI 2009

Date: 31 January 2009, Saturday

Venue: R.Premadasa Stadium, Colombo

Kick off: 14:30 local time (09:00 GMT)

Live on: NEO Cricket TV Channel

The match has another attraction and that is the landmark of Sri Lankan off spinner Muttiah Muralitharan who is just 2 wickets shy of Pakistan legend Wasim Akram’s record 503 ODI wickets. The spinner started the series with 500 ODI wickets and took it to 501 picking up the wicket of Gautam Gambhir in the first ODI. Sri Lankan cricket fans are now eagerly waiting to see Muralitharan becoming leading wicket taker in ODI cricket as he is now in test cricket. This landmark could be an extra inspiration for the rest of the Sri Lankan pacers.

For India, they have a number of reasons to be confident with a number of players playing at their best at this moment. Open Gautam Gambhir has been in excellent form of recent, while talented players like Suresh Raina and Rohit Sharma are giving their 100 percent to cement their place in the final eleven. Yuvraj Singh did not get run in the first ODI, but considering his fiery performance against South Africa in the recent home series, Sri Lanka can not just write him off yet. Dhoni has been showing great maturity as a player as well as a captain.

Indian bowlers, specially the pacers, have been impressive over the last one year with sheer amount of consistency in their performance. Pacer Munaf Patel was not very impressive in the first match, but the way he improved over the last six months, I must say that he is a dangerous bowler for any opponent. His comparatively slow but swing bowling should be a cause of concern for any side. India might be missing injured off spinner Harbhajan Singh, but his replacement left arm spinner Pragyan Ojha did not let the Indians feel the void of Harbhajan Singh in the first ODI, taking three wickets. All rounder Yusuf Pathan also add some strength to the Indian team. Overall, Indian has a balanced side who can outdo any side in their days. India rested in-form opener Virender Sehwag in the first match as the batsman picked up an injury during training before the first match. I am not sure whether he will be able to take part in the second ODI, but if he returns, Rohit Sharma would have to make way for him in the final eleven for the second match.

Sri Lanka also has a number of quality players like Sanath Jayasuria, Kumar Sangakara, and Captain Mahela Jayawardene. However, the main problem is that most of the players are now out of form. Captain Jayawardene is going through a bad patch, while wicketkeeper batsman Sangakara is not anywhere close to his top form at this moment. No doubt, veteran opener Sanath Jayasuria’s excellent century in the first ODI can be an inspiration for the others in the team. Especially the young cricketers like Kandamby and Maharoof, Jayasuria’s excellent innings could be a source of inspiration. Sri Lankan pace attack was not impressive in the first match, but the pacers like Thushara, Kapugedera are talented and already proved their skill and talent in Pakistan recently. So, they can come back with their top form in the second ODI, while two Sri Lankan spinners Muttiah Muralitharan and Ajantha Mendis are out there posing some constant threat for the visitors.

Venue R.Premadasa Stadium, Colombo is well-known for high-scoring matches. In fact, this is the venue which holds the record for highest test total 952 for 6 made by Sri Lanka in 1997-98 season against India during which Jayasuria and Mahanama shared 576 runs for the second wicket which is still a world record for highest test partnership for any wicket. So, I am expecting a high-scoring match in the second ODI.

Online Live Score and Updates

Here, I am giving some links of live score and update websites from where you can get the live score and updates of the match between India and Sri Lanka:

Cricinfo

Cricketnext

Cricket.sulekha

stickcricket

cricpoint

indvsauslivescore

cricbuzz

squidoo

Sify

cricketworld

India seems to be favorite for the second ODI, but you can not write off Sri Lanka who has home advantage. To come back in the series, Sri Lanka needs to win the match and to do this, Sri Lankan middle order has to play a big part. Indian team seems to be pretty much balanced and if they continue their current form then Sri Lanka might find it a bit hard to stop the winning run of Indian team in the second ODI too. However, I am expecting a competitive match in the second ODI.


Thursday, January 29, 2009

Zimbabwe Defeated Kenya by 151 Runs in the 2nd ODI

After a convincing 109-run victory in the first ODI, Zimbabwe pulled off another big-margin victory against Kenya on Thursday in the second match of the five-match ODI series. Zimbabwe defeated Kenya by 151 runs in the second ODI. Batting first, Zimbabwe put on 351 runs on the board losing 7 wickets thanks to excellent bating display from Stuart Matsikenyeri, Malcolm Waller and Elton Chigumbura. Specially, Chigumbura’s fire-cracking 29-ball 68 was instrumental behind Zimbabwe’s total crossing 350. However, it was Matsikenyeri who set up the platform for a big total, scoring 90 runs off 95 balls. Waller scored 63 runs from 54 balls. Collins Obuya picked up 2 wickets for Kenya.

Chasing down such a big total, host Keya never looked to be in the right track throughout their innings. Captain Steve Tikolo’s 56 helped Kenya reach 200 before being all out with 29 balls in hand. Graeme Cremer and Keith Dabengwa picked up 2 wickets each for Zimbabwe. With this victory, Zimbabwe took 2-0 lead in the series and they can ensure their series win if they can pulled off another victory in the third ODI on Saturday.

The ease with which Zimbabwe outperformed Kenya, it seemed Zimbabwe went back to their golden days when cricketers like Flower brothers, Stuart Carlisle, Heath Streak were playing at their best.

Related article:

Cricinfo

Andrew Symonds Fined $4,000

In terms of financial amount, $4,000 fine is not a big fine for Andrew Symonds who earns millions of dollars through Indian Premier League (IPL). On Thursday, Symonds was fined this amount after being pleaded guilty of making insulting public comment against New Zealand wicketkeeper Brendan McCullum during a radio interview recently. Cricket Australia decided to fine Symonds this amount following his 14-minute hearing in Melbourne on Thursday.

The all rounder accepted the fine, stating that he was even happy that CA judged the situation on the basis of his hearing, not by the comment made during the radio interview. This curly-haired hot-tempered cricketer used insulting words for the New Zealand cricketer during the radio interview while expressing his disgust at New South Wales signing McCullum for a short time period. This is not the first time Symonds made newspaper headline for breaching discipline.

Andrew Symonds has got the full support of Australian captain Ricky Ponting who is reportedly lobbying to get him for the South Africa tour. However, former Australian great Ian Chappell thinks that the way Symonds is going, he might be distraction for the team. Now, let us see if Andrew Symonds can come back with his true spirit of cricket.

Related article:

ABC

Playing Cricket over Mount Everest may Cause Serious Health Problem

I already wrote about the news regarding two groups of cricketers going to take part in a Twenty20 cricket match over Mount Everest. The charity match is due to take place on 21 April at a place which will be 5,000m above the sea level. Through this match, organizers are expecting to raise £250,000 for the Lord's Taverners and Himalayan Trust UK charities.

However, Dr Buddha Basnyat, a specialist in high altitude health, warned the cricketers that they might face breathing problem while playing at that height because of lack of oxygen.

BBC reported:

"Oxygen levels at the height are only half what they are at sea level. That can produce illness, sometimes fatal, even for people not running around chasing a ball," he said.

"The important thing is, if people aren't feeling well and yet push themselves to play, especially if they exert themselves, that can predispose them to altitude sickness."

Taking part in a charity match is defiantly something praiseworthy, but it should not be done at the sake of anybody’s health. If there is serious health concern regarding playing cricket at that height, then I think, it is better not to organize the match. Even if organized, I think, organizers must ensure that no player would suffer from the match.

Javed Miandad Stepped Down as PCB Director General

Former Pakistan legend Javed Miandad has stepped down as the director general of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) recently, as he refused to sign in a contract by which his role as a PCB official would have been restricted within domestic affairs. Under this contact, Miandad was offered 500,000 rupees (6,328 dollars) salary per month. However, Pakistan’s highest test run scorer found the contract unacceptable, considering the fact that his work area would have been restricted within domestic cricket of Pakistan. Miandad also said that position does not matter to him, rather he wants to serve Pakistan cricket voluntarily.

Javed Miandad also expressed his dissatisfaction on PCB’s move to sack Shoaib Malik as Pakistan captain and appoint Younis Khan as the new captain. Even PCB did not consult with him about the matter before the decision being finalized, following Pakistan’s 234-run defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka. This has been the fourth stint of Javed Miandad with PCB as the former star batsman coached Pakistan national team on three occasions. Despite his resignation, Miandad would remain a member of PCB governing body.

Related article:

AFP

Andrew Flintoff Not to Play in the Final Warm-up Match

England cricketer Andrew Flintoff will remain sidelined for England’s final tour match before the start of the test series within a week. The all rounder limped off with a left side injury during the first warm-up match against St Kitts recently, but the scan report did not reveal any big damage on his left side, keeping the hope of his participation in the first test against West Indies alive. England team will play the final tour match against West Indies A, but Flintoff will not participate in the match in order to ensure he becomes fully fit for the first test. Stand in coach of England team, Andy Flower, said Flintoff would be fit for the first test.

Related article:

Guardian

Younis Khan: Complete Harmony with Shoaib Malik

New Pakistan captain Younis Khan has assured of maintaining a good relationship with the outgoing captain Shoaib Malik who stepped in as Pakistan captain following Pakistan’s first round exit from 2007 World Cup. Terming Malik as a younger brother to him, Younis has confidently said that he expects full support from Malik as he used to do when Malik was captain. Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) took no time to sack Shoaib Malik from his short term captaincy role after the humiliating 234-run defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka team in the third and the final ODI of the three-match ODI series on Saturday.

Younis Khan wants to lead Pakistan from the front like legendary Pakistan captain Imran Khan. The first assignment for Younis Khan as Pakistan captain would be the two-test home series against Sri Lanka, starting from next month.

Related article:

Cricinfo

IPL Second Player Auction Begins on 6 February

Second player auction for Indian Premier League (IPL) starts from 6 February. IPL authority has recently released a list of 112 foreign players from whom the eight franchises will choose their foreign players. Each of the IPL teams has got to spend US$2m for signing foreign players in the upcoming auction which will be held in Goa. Australian players are dominating the list with 27 players, followed by 21 English players. Well, the list seems to be pretty long, but it is expected that about 16 players will be signed from the 112 players, meaning each team would sign 2 overseas players in the auction. Besides Australian and England cricketers, there are cricketers from Bangladesh, New Zealand, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, South Africa, West Indies and Zimbabwe.

Related article:

Cricinfo

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Sri Lanka vs India 1st ODI 2009: Preview, Live Score

Those who are interested to get the live score and updates of the second ODI between India and Sri Lanka can follow the link given below:

Sri Lanka vs India 2nd ODI 2009 Live Score and Updates

If you want to get the live score and updates of the match between Sri Lanka and India, then visit the following link:

Sri Lanka vs India 1st ODI 2009: Live Score and Updates

Sri Lanka and India are going to face each other in the first of the 5-match ODI series at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium, Dambulla, Sri Lanka. With both sides currently performing well, this seems to be an enticing encounter between the two cricket powers. On the back of recent triumph in ODI series in Pakistan including their emphatic 234-run victory in the final ODI, Sri Lanka has enough reasons to be confident ahead of the upcoming series against India, even though they may not have forgotten last year’s 3-2 ODI series defeat to India at home.

Match: Sri Lanka vs India, First ODI 2009

Date: 28 January 2009, Wednesday

Venue: Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium, Dambulla

Kick off: 10:00 local (04:30 GMT)

Live on: NEO Cricket

India has been in buoyant form for the last six months in both test and ODI cricket. Towards the end of the last year, India defeated Australia in the home test series, followed by ODI and test series victory over England at home. The ease with which India won these series has been instrumental behind their current level of confident. In the presence of a number of in-form players, India is considered to be one of the top teams in world cricket at this moment. Well, so be Sri Lanka too, but their consistency level is surely not as impressive as India in the last six months. From this point of view, India seems to be very strong and many would put the favorite tag on them.

Well, I would not go this far, considering the strength of Sri Lankan bowling line up. Besides the two fiery spinners like Muttiah Muralitharan and Ajantha Mendis, who tested Indian batsman in the Asia Cup final, Sri Lankan pacers have also added some spice to their bowling line up. Specially, young pacer Nuwan Kulasekara has been in inspirational form of recent. In fact, his fiery bowling was instrumental behind Sri Lanka’s recent ODI series victory in Pakistan. Sri Lanka is missing veteran pacer Chaminda Vaas, but I think, Kulasekara has so far successfully fit the shoes of Vaas.

However, batting has become Sri Lanka’s main cause of concern. Sri Lankan batsmen struggled in Zimbabwe and their poor form continued in Bangladesh too, and even Sri Lankan suffered a humiliating defeat to Bangladesh in an ODI match. Promoting Tillakaratne Dilshan to the opening slot along with veteran Sanath Jayasuria worked very well and Sri Lanka would continue it against India too. Captain Mahela Jayawardene is going through a bad patch currently, and Sri Lanka would desperately hope to see their captain to come back in form with a good innings in the forthcoming series.

Indian batting line up is traditionally strong and as would remain this time too. In the presence of Sachin Tendulkar, Indian batting line up seems to be pretty much balanced. Tendulkar missed ODI series in Sri Lanka last year due to injury, but this time, India will get the service of this master batsman against Sri Lanka. Sehwag and Tendulkar would open for India, followed by Gautam Gambhir, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh and Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni. All rounder Yusuf Pathan would bring the much-need balance in the team combination.

Considering the pace friendly wicket of Dambulla, India might feature four pacers, but it is not yet confirmed. Pacers like Zaheer Khan, Ishant Sharma and Munaf Patel are perhaps playing at their best now and they will definitely play tomorrow. India has got to choose between pacer Praveen Kumar and spinner Pragyan Ojha for the fourth bowler’s spot, depending on the nature of the wicket. India is missing their prime spinner Harbhajan Singh who is injured out. Despite the past records of Dambulla’s pacer friendly wickets, I think, India should play Pragyan Ojha as the spinner because it would bring variation in their bowling line up.

Though Ajantha Mendis failed to dominate over Pakistani batsmen in the recent series, the carom bowler would still remain a threat for the Indian batsmen who know it very well the kind of threat the spinner could pose with his mysterious deliveries. His career best bowling performance- 6 for 13 in the Asia Cup final, helped Sri Lanka to win the Asia Cup last year. One interesting thing would be seeing Mendis bowling against Tendulkar for the first time in an ODI match.

Muttiah Muralitharan is on the verge of creating another history now. The veteran needs 3 more wickets to overtake Pakistan legend Wasim Akram as the leading wicket taker of ODI cricket. So, it would be a big occasion for the Sri Lankan fans. Well, Muralitharan could not fare well in last year’s ODI series against India at home as he picked up only 4 wickets in four matches.

Yuvraj Singh is definitely one of the top performers of Indian team at this moment. If the batsman can start from his dominating performance in the last ODI series at home, then Sri Lankan bowlers might have to face some bad times on the field. However, the good news for Sri Lankan team is that Yuvraj Singh’s performance in Sri Lanka is not impressive at all. In the middle order, Rohit Sharma is also in the race to make it to the first eleven, but Suresh Raina seems to have an edge over Rohit.

Sanath Jayasuriya is the name of an all-time threat for Indian team, irrespective of pitch, venue, tournament and format. The veteran Sri Lankan batsmen tested Indian bowlers on a number of times in the past and I would not be surprised if Jayasuria plays another fire-cracking innings against his favorite opponent in the first match of the series. However, Dhoni can fell the sigh of relief, considering the fact that Jayasuria’s record at Dambulla is not satisfactory at all with just one half-century in 17 innings.

Online Live Score and Updates

Here, I am giving some names of live score and update websites from where you can get the live score and updates of the match:

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India seems to be favorite in terms of their recent performances at home. However, considering the home advantage of Sri Lankan team, I would also see many chances for Sri Lanka in the match. Though Dambulla pitch in general helps the pacer much, I think, India will still miss the service of spinner Harbhajan Singh. Indian team looks more balanced than the Sri Lankan team, but I must admit that both sides have some match winners who are capable of clinching the momentum single-handedly if the are at their prime. So, the first ODI seems to be an exciting affair between the two neighboring countries. That means, you can expect a mind-blowing match at Dambulla on Wednesday.

Australian Dominance Declining in Cricket?

Has Australia’s dominance over world cricket stated declining? I know there are many who already started seeking answer of this question. To be honest, there is no clear-cut answer of it. It is pretty much certain that Australia is not anywhere close to where they were even couple of years back. Following the retirements of a number of great cricketers like Glenn McGrath, Shane Warne, Australia is yet to get the players who are capable of fitting the their shoes.

Australia lost test series in India last year, was beaten by South Africa at home in front of the home crowd, and now, South Africa defeated Australia in the ODI series too. Apparently, Australia’s dominance is fading away, but it is difficult to say, to what extent their dominance is decreasing. I think, they need to focus on grass root level where they put less focus over the last one decade, even though Australian team was dominating world cricket. So, searching new talent is very important for Australian at this moment.

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SMH

ECB Handed 3-week Window for English Cricketers for IPL

What does Indian Premier League (IPL) mean to you? Well, to a cricketer, IPL means big money deals and getting rich within few years. Ahead of the IPL season 2, starting from 10 April this year, English cricketers are perhaps thinking the same way. Well, the good news for the English cricketers and the IPL fans is that England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has recently agreed to open up a three-week window for the English cricketers to take part in this tournament. Initially, ECB offered only two weeks for the English cricketers who are centrally contracted to ECB. Upon the four week demand by IPL chairman Lalit Modi, ECB granted three weeks. English players will join their respective IPL teams after the end of their ODI series against West Indies ends on 3 April. However, the player will have to join England squad for the test series which is scheduled to start from 7 May. Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff will be drafted into the IPL auction starting on 6 February.

Related article:

BBC

Cricket Network: A Cricket Social Network

You already know about the social networking sites on the web. Social network sites like Hi5 and Facebook are quite popular among the net users across the world. Now, a new social network site based on cricket has been launched in the internet where cricket players and fans can communicate with each other. Named ‘Cricket Network’, the site offers latest news of cricket and provides cricket players with important tips to improve their skill. Cricket fans can discuss about different issues of world cricket with many other cricket fans. The address of the site is: http://www.cricket-network.net. So, pay a visit to the site if you want to check the advantages of the social network site yourself.

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PressMedia Wire

Cricket Match on the Mount Everest!

Yes, cricket match on the world’s highest Mountain, the Everest. Don’t be surprised just yet, because you do not yet know who are playing in the cricket match. Well, a Twenty20 charity match will be held at the Gorak Shep, a place near the Everest base camp, 5,165 meters above the sea level. Two teams comprising of British players would take part in the game. Current England captain Andrew Strauss will lead one side, while other side will be led by England vice-captain Alastair Cook. The idea of organizing such a cricket match is the brainchild of a British cricket fanatic Richard Kirtley who came up with this idea while visiting Mount Everest in 2006. The match will take place on April 21, 2009.

Related article:

AFP

Former Pakistani Cricketer Farhan Adil Announced Retirement

After waiting for 4 years to get a recall from national side, former Pakistani cricketer Farhan Adil has recently declared his retirement from all forms of cricket. The 31-year-old played only one test match that came in 2003 when he was suddenly brought into the national side for the third and the final test match against Bangladesh in Multan. After winning the previous two games, Pakistan rested some of the key players for the third match, featuring three debutants including Farhan Adil. Pakistan was pushed all the way by Bangladesh as the home side won by a narrow 1 wicket margin thanks to a match saving century from Captain Inzamam-ul-Haq. Farhan scored 25 and 8 in two innings respectively, was dropped from the national side after his solitary match, but was never recalled.

Farhan Adil played for Habib Bank and Karachi in Pakistan domestic cricket. Playing 107 matches, he scored 5326 runs at an average of 35.74 with 9 centuries including the career best 211 runs. Adil said that he had no regret for not getting a recall from national team selectors, but he said that he was under-prepared when he had suddenly asked to play his debut match five years back.

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Cricinfo

Sri Lanka vs India 1st ODI 2009: Live Score and Updates

If you want to get the live score and updates of the match between Sri Lanka and India, then visit the following link:

India vs Sri Lanka 3rd ODI 2009: Live Score and Updates

Those who are interested to get the live score and updates of the second ODI between India and Sri Lanka can follow the link given below:

Sri Lanka vs India 2nd ODI 2009 Live Score and Updates

India has won the match by 6 wickets. Dhoni has remained not out on 61 runs and Rohit Sharma on 25 runs.

Indian Innings:

48.1 overs: India is 247/4. India has won the match by 6 wickets with 11 balls remaining in hand.

48 overs: India is 246/4

47 overs: India is 237/4

46 overs: India is 230/4 Dhoni completed his 26th half century in this over.

45 overs: India is 219/4

44 overs: India is 214/4

43 overs: India is 210/4 Rohit Sharma hit a boundary in this over off Mendis.

42 overs: India is 201/4

41 overs: India is 194/4 Kulasekara conceded only 2 runs from this over.

40 overs: India is 192/4

39 overs: India is 186/4 Five runs came from the over.

38 overs: India is 181/4 Yuvraj Singh got out off Maharoof for 23.

37 overs: India is 180/3 Kulasekara bowled this over.

36 overs: India is 176/3 Three runs came from this over.

35 overs: India is 173/3 India needs 74 more runs to win the match from 90 balls.

34 overs: India is 167/3

33 overs: India is 163/3

32 overs: India is 158/3 Dilshan conceded only 3 runs in this over.

31 overs: India is 155/3 Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh are batting now.

30 overs: India is 145/3

28 overs: India 138/3

27.3 overs: India 135/3 Suresh Raina got run out for 53. Another important wicket for Sri Lanka. India is now under pressure.

27 overs: India 134/2

26 overs: India 129/2 Mendis conceded only 2 runs in this over.

25 overs: India 127/2 Yuvraj Singh has come into the wicket.

24.4 overs: India 126/2 Gambhir got out off Muralitharan for 62

24 overs: India 121/1 Gambhir pulled over the cover region for a boundary.

23 overs: India is 115/1 Only 3 runs came from this over.

22 overs: India is 112/1 Gambhir completed his half century in this over.

21 overs: India is 103/1

20 overs: India is 99/1 Dilshan came into attack and conceded 6 runs in this over

19 overs: India is 93/1 Muralitharan was brought into the attack.

18 overs: India is 91/1

17 overs: India 87/1 Raina hit an excellent cover drive for a boundary in this over.

16 overs: India 80/1. Ajantha Mendis came into the attack for the first time.

15 overs: India 76/1 Only three runs came from this over.

14 overs: India 73/1

13 overs: India 68/1 Only two runs came from this over. Good over from Maharoof.

12 overs: India 66/1 Gambhir is batting on 30 and Raina on 23.

11 overs: India 58/1

10 overs: India 54/1 Two boundaries came in this over.

9 overs: India 45/1. Gautam Gambhir got a life as Jayawardene missed a difficult catch in the first slip.

8 overs: India 40/1 Good over for Sri Lanka as Thushara conceded only 2 runs.

7 overs: India 38/1 India got 14 runs in this over as Suresh Raina hit two boundaries and an over boundary off Kulasekara.

6 overs: India 24/1 Dilshan dropped Raina, and thus, giving him a life which could be dangerous for Sri Lanka.

5 overs: India 19/1 There was a strong caught and bowl appeal against Gautam Gambhir, but it was ruled out later on by the third umpire.

4 overs: India 14/1. Suresh Raina joined Gambhir in the wicket.

3.4 overs: India 13/1. Sachin Tendulkar fell for 5 being trapped in LBW off Thushara

3 overs: India 9/0 Tendulkar is batting on 4 and Gambhir on 4

2 overs: India 7/0 Thushara bowled this over and conceded 6 runs.

1 over: India 1/0. Kulasekara bowled the first over.

Sri Lanka Innings:

50 overs: Sri Lanka 246/7

49 overs: Sri Lanka 239/6

48 overs: Sri Lanka is 229/6

47.2 overs: Sri Lanka is 222/6

33.3 overs: Sri Lanka is 143/2

32.1 overs: Sri Lanka 132/2 Jayasuria hit another boundary.

31 overs: Sri Lanka 128/2

30 overs: Sri Lanka 126/2 jayasuria is batting on 74 and Kandamby on 4

29 overs: Sri Lanka 124/2

28 overs: Sri Lanka 118/2 India got another wicket as Kumar Sangakara got out for 44 in the last ball of this over. Ojha picked up the wicket. An important break through for India.

27 overs: Sri Lanka 110/1. Ten runs came from this over. An expensive over for India. Jayasuria is heading towards another fiery innings against his favorite opponent India.

26 overs: Sri Lanka 100/1 Jayasuria hit a SIX in this over.

25 overs: Sri Lanka 91/1

24 overs: Sri Lanka 89/1 Sangakara is on 33 and Jayasuria on 53

23.4 overs: Sri Lanka 88/1

23 overs: Sri Lanka 86/1

22 overs: Sri Lanka 82/1 Jayasuria completed his 68th half-century. He is looking dangerous now.

21 overs: Sri Lanka 81/1

20 overs: Sri Lanka 78/1 Ojha conceded four singles in this over. Sri Lanka seems to be in control in the match at this moment.

19 overs: Sri Lanka 74/1 Jayasuria is on 46 and Sangakara is on 25.

18.3 overs: Sri Lanka 73/1

18 overs: Sri Lanka 69/1

17 overs: Sri Lanka 66/1 Yusuf Pathan came into the attack for the first time. He conceded 3 runs in this over.

16 overs: Sri Lanka 63/1 Ojha was brought into the attack. The spinner conceded 4 runs in his first over in the innings.

15 overs: Sri Lanka 59/1 Jayasuria is batting on 38 and Sangakara is not out on 18.

14 overs: Sri Lanka 52/1

13 overs: Sri Lanka 50/1 Munaf Patel conceded 8 runs in the over.

12 overs: Sri Lanka 42/1 Ishant Sharma picked up a meden over for India.

11 overs: Sri Lanka 42/1 Nine runs from the over. It was an expensive over for India. Jayasuria and Sangalara look dangerous at this moment.

10 overs: Sri Lanka 33/1

9 overs: Sri Lanka 27/1 Four runs came from the over.

8.3 overs: Sri Lanka 27/1 Jayasuria flicked on the leg side for another boundary in the first ball

8 overs: Sri Lanka 23/1 Sangakara hit a boundary in the fifth ball of the over.

7.3 overs: Sri Lanka 19/1 Ishant Sharma has been brought into the attack for the first time in the match.

7 overs: Sri Lanka 19/1 Two runs came from the over.

6.3 overs: Sri Lanka 18/1 Zaheer Khan conceded only 1 run from the first three balls.

6 overs: Sri Lanka 17/1 Five runs came from the over.

5.2 overs: Sri Lanka 16/1 Sanath Jayasuria smashed over the cover for another boundary.

5 overs: Sri Lanka 12/1 Couple of runs came off Zaheer in the last delivery of the over. Zaheer is bowling well at this moment.

4.3 overs: Sri Lanka 10/1

4 overs: Sri Lanka 10/1 Munaf conceded 4 runs in this over.

3.3 overs: Sri Lanka 10/1 Another fiery shot from Jayasuria, the second boundary of Sri Lankan innings.

3 overs: Sri Lanka 6/1 Zaheer Khan picked up another meden over.

2.3 overs: Sri Lanka 6/1 No run from the first three balls of the over. Zaheer is bowling very well.

2 overs: Sri Lanka 6/1. Six runs have come from this over.

1.3 overs: Sri Lanka 4/1. The first boundary of Sri Lankan innings has come off Jayasuria's bat. Munaf Patel is bowling this over.

1 over: Sri Lanka 0/1 Meden wicket for India. Zaheer Khan bowl very well. Kumar Sangakara is the new man in the wicket.

0.3 over: Sri Lanka 0/1 India picked up the first wicket as Dilshan fell for a duck, getting run out.

0.1 over: Sri Lanka 0/0

India won the toss and decided to bowl first.

Dear readers, the match will start very soon. The players have come on the field.

First ODI of the five-match series between Sri Lanka and India is going to take place at the Rangiri Dambulla International Stadium, Dambulla on 28 February (Wednesday). The match kicks off at 10:00 local (04:30 GMT). Here, in this entry, we will be giving live score and updates of the match. So, be with us and enjoy the live updates of the match.

Andrew Symonds: Waiting to Meet His Bitter Fate?

Getting fined or suspension is nothing new for Australian all rounder Andrew Symonds. The curly-haired Queenslander is now facing another fine or suspension by Cricket Australia (CA) because of his recent abusive comment on New Zealand cricket Brendon McCullum during a radio interview. Though he later apologized publicly to McCullum, it is likely that he might be handed a punishment after a code of behavior hearing scheduled on Thursday. However, Symonds has got the support of Queensland coach Trevor Barsby who assured him of all sorts of support from Queensland team. Former Queensland captain and Australian international Jimmy Maher also stood by Symonds, claiming that it was a light hearted radio interview and it was not a serious comment. Now, let us see what is in Andrew Symonds’ fate.

Related article:

Cricinfo