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Sep 30, 2010

Kumble appointed the chairman of the NCA

Anil Kumble on Wednesday was appointed the chairman of the National Cricket Academy (NCA)by the BCCI.

"Kumble is an excellent cricketer. He has the knowledge of the game and is Bangalore-based. So he can look after the academy very well," BCCI president Shashank Manohar said on the assessment taken at the annual general meeting.

"The Board has purchased about 50 acres of land in Bangalore where the Board is developing its academy. According to all of us, Kumble is the excellent choice for that post," Manohar said.

When asked about his commitments when playing for IPL, Manohar replied "He does not work for 365 days for the Bangalore franchise; neither will he work for 365 days for the NCA. We have a director in Sandeep Patil to look after cricket."

Sep 29, 2010

Clarke wary of India's bowling ability

Australian Vice-Captain Michael Clarke is hopeful his team will be able to counter India's bowling attack in home conditions in a two-Test series starting on 1st Oct 2010.

The hosts' attack has been supported with the return of left-arm Fast bowler Zaheer Khan, who was forced to miss a recent Test series in Sri Lanka due to an injury.

"Zaheer and Ishant Sharma are two very good bowlers of reverse swing. It can be very hard to combat at times and we have experienced that in the past," Clarke told reporters in Chandigarh on Tuesday.

"But we've been preparing and batting against reverse swing and against spin bowling too. Hopefully, come Friday, we'll be able to do well."

Harbhajan leads India's spin attack, having already given a good account of himself against the Australians with 79 wickets in 14 Tests.

The off-spinner rose to fame in 2001 when he took 32 wickets in three Tests series against Steve Waugh's Australians to lead his side to a stunning 2-1 series victory at home.

"Every player plays spin differently. I think individually we all have a plan and it's all about trying to adapt to the pitch conditions and the bowler," said Clarke.

"I have a plan against the spinners and will try to stick to that. Hopefully, it works."

Australia, who lost the last Test series in India in 2008, will play the opening Test in Mohali and the second match in Bangalore. The Tests will be followed by three ODI internationals.

Sep 27, 2010

Shahid Afridi hinted at a return to Test Cricket

Pakistan ODI skipper Shahid Afridi hints at test return Friday as the team returned from what he called the ‘most difficult’ tour of his 14 year career in England.

The corruption-tainted tour ended Wednesday with England taking the ODI series 3-2 after an Afridi-led Pakistani fightback had levelled the series. Pakistan also lost the Test series, 3-1.

"The best part of the whole tour was that the players showed unity even in difficult times and gave a good fight in the ODI series against England," Afridi told a scrum of reporters outside Karachi airport.

"I will think about it and if the team needs it, I may consider playing the Test series against South Africa," added the explosive all-rounder.

After a 4 year break, Afridi came out of Test retirement this summer only to quit after one game when Australia won Pakistan by 150 runs at Lord's in July.

Sep 24, 2010

Pietersen included in England squad for Ashes Series

The England selectors named a 16-member tour party under the captaincy of Andrew Strauss for the Ashes Test series in Australia with faster Chris Tremlett and spinner Monty Panesar both recalled to the test squad.

Tremlett, who won the last of his 3 Test caps against India in 2007, is recalled to the England set-up for the 1st time since the tour of New Zealand in 2008, while Monty Panesar wins a place in the tour party after a successful domestic season which saw him take 52 first-class wickets for his Sussex team.

Surrey's Steven Davies has been named as England's deputy wicketkeeper behind Sussex's Matt Prior and is the only member of the squad uncapped at Test Cricket level.

Also included in the team was the high profile Kevin Pietersen, who had tired a brief spell out of the team through the limited-overs matches against Pakistan.

The selectors also named 11 players to be awarded 12-month England central contracts with Warwickshire's Jonathan Trott and Middlesex pace bowler Steven Finn each winning a central contract for the first time. A further five players have been awarded incremental contracts.

England Ashes Squad: Andrew Strauss (c), Alastair Cook, Chris Tremlett, Eoin Morgan, Graeme Swann, Ian Bell, James Anderson, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Matt Prior, Monty Panesar, Paul Collingwood, Steve Davies, Steven Finn, Stuart Broad, Tim Bresnan

Sep 20, 2010

Indian squad announced for Aus Test Series

Cheteshwar Pujara, after his excellent performances in the recent times, finally he get the place in the Indian team when the selectors met at Chennai to select the team for the Test series against Australia.

Cheteshwar PujaraGautam Gambhir also returned to the Indian squad after missing out of the last two Test match against Sri Lanka while the youngsters Suresh Raina and Murali Vijay retained their places in the team.

Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman were the regular choices.

Spinner Harbhajan Singh and Faster Zaheer Khan also returned from their wound layoffs to boost the Indian bowling attack.

Ishant Sharma and Sreesanth were the other seamers in the team while both spinners Pragyan Ojha and Amit Mishra were included.

India Team: MS Dhoni (c & w), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Suresh Raina, Cheteshwar Pujara, M Vijay, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Ishant Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Sreesanth and Amit Mishra

Sep 17, 2010

Flintoff announced retirement from all cricket

English All-rounder Andrew Flintoff announced his retirement from all forms of the game in a statement after being told by his doctor that his knee could no longer stand the rigours of top level sport.

"It is with both disappointment and sadness that I am today (Thursday) announcing my retirement from all forms of cricket," former England captain Flintoff said in a statement released by his agents, International Sports Management.

"The decision to end my career came yesterday after consultation with medical advisers," added the 32-year-old all-rounder, who quit the Test format after helping England regain the Ashes last year.

Flintoff underwent knee surgery last August and needed a second operation in January before returning to training with Lancashire in June. Hopes of an early comeback were shelved, however, and he missed the entire county season.

He will always be remembered for his performances in the 2005 Ashes when his destructive bowling helped England beat Australia in a series for the first time since 1987.

Flintoff made his England debut in 1998 and went on to play 79 tests and 141 one-day internationals, scoring 3,845 test runs, including five centuries at an average of 31.77.

He took 226 test wickets and scored 3,394 runs in ODIs, taking 169 wickets in that format.

He captained his country for the first time in 2006 in India but was also in charge for a disastrous 2006-7 tour when Australia gained revenge for their 2005 series defeat -- thrashing England 5-0.

At the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean he became embroiled in controversy when he had to be rescued from the sea after taking out a pedalo after a night out. He was subsequently stripped of the vice-captaincy.

His popularity never waned, however, and despite ankle surgery he was selected for the 2009 Ashes squad.

Sep 8, 2010

India-Aus series important for cricket: Lawson

Former Australian fast bowler Geoff Lawson considers the forthcoming Australia tour of India 2010 as a very important tour in the conditions of the 'spot-fixing' scandal that has engulfed the game.

"This series is very important. A good, tough and hard series before the Ashes Series will do a whole world of good for the Australian team. People's faith in the game will return if they see good cricket. They will start thinking about the current action, not the one which has happened in the past," said Lawson.

"If the players play good cricket, the public will forget what's gone before. The people want their heroes to play well. There wasn't a hero in this argument," he said.

The former cricketer, who was the coach of the Pakistan team for two years and has seen the spot-fixing tainted trio of Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir from close quarters, was secure the game would come out of the latest scandal as it has done several times in the past.

"Cricket is a very resilient game. People in Australia are looking forward to this series as well as the Ashes. The game will move on if better and competitive cricket is played at regular intervals," said Lawson when asked whether the game can bounce back in style.