With a recall to the national team in the offing, Sourav Ganguly has prepared for a possible tour of South Africa by giving up the captaincy of the Bengal Ranji Trophy side. The national selectors meet in New Delhi tomorrow to pick the side for the three-Test series.
Ganguly, Gautam Gambhir and VRV Singh are likely to be named in the squad for the Tests when the selectors meet on Thursday and, with Rahul Dravid not certain to play in the opening Test, Ganguly could join VVS Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar in the middle order for what is likely to be a tremendous test of India's batting resources.
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Two under-13 batsmen, Mohammad Shahbaz Tumbi and B Manoj Kumar, put together an unbeaten world record partnership of 721 runs in a one-day match conducted by the Hyderabad Cricket Association.
The partnership resulted in a 700-run win for St Peter’s High School, Bowenpally, as their opponents, St Philip’s High School, were bowled out for a measly 21.
Speaking about India, the Microsoft chief predicted a ‘personalised television’ revolution, which would move ahead of cable television viewership in coming years.
While Ballmer was at his flamboyant best, Anil Kumble’s poise and computer knowledge came in for a lot of praise. The record breaking leg-spinner, known for his unerring line and length, was sharp and precise while showcasing his company’s new software Matchcast.
Kumble, who is the director of Stump Vision, a cricketing software company, said that Matchcast was developed using Windows Vista, Windows Presentation Foundation and Office 2007. To be launched in January 2007, Matchcast allows the user to watch a cricket match live and have access to relevant data at the same time. Kumble also demonstrated a product that allows the user to maintain a scorebook of cricket matches.
We are all quite realistic about who is competing for places.
With the wicket-keepers it is Chris Read against Geraint Jones. With the batsmen, Ian Bell and Alastair Cook and I are fighting for two spaces.
There are no niggles between us. If anything, we drive each other on. It's not something we tend to talk about, though.
"Andy is a big lad but in the scale of things it isn't really that big. It's more the impact of one day seeing bare skin and the next quite a prominent piece of art on his arm.
"He's at an age where he knows his own mind. It's making a statement about something he does for his career. I don't think for one minute he'll regret what he's done."
The new tattoo includes the Roman numerals for Flintoff's Test player number (591 - DXCI) and one-day player number (154 - CLIV), below the three lions of the England badge.
One of the all time greats of Indian cricket Polly Umrigar passed away on Tuesday night in Mumbai. He was 80 years old.
Umrigar represented India in 59 Tests and scored 3631 runs at an average of 42.22, and he had also picked 35 wickets with his off-break bowling.
According to reports, he had been keeping unwell since June this year and was believed to be suffering from cancer. In fact, the legendary batsman had missed the BCCI's function felicitating former captains on Saturday.
To begin with, as the closing ceremony drew to a close, Ricky Ponting waved his fingers at BCCI president Sharad Pawar, signalling him to come and hand over the winners' trophy. It may or may not have been in jest but Pawar had the decency to just laugh and ask Ponting to step forward instead to complete the formalities.
But the story didn't end there. As the Aussies celebrated exuberantly, the stage was set for the victory photograph. However, even as the players were taking positions for the cameras, Damien Martyn tapped at Pawar - who happened to be standing there - and literally pushed him out of the stage. Pawar walked away quietly, not showing any hurt or anger.
There were no wild celebrations, none of the theatrics so often associated with him. Just a look towards the heavens and a punch in the air, as Ashish Nehra, who had fought valiantly to deny him the feat, rushed to his former captain, a man who backed him when others would not and congratulated him, as the rest of the North team followed suit.
Outside the dressing room, national selectors Venkatpathy Raju and Ranjib Biswal stood up and applauded, flashing the thumbs up sigh to Ganguly.
The significance of the moment was not lost on anyone, because at this stage, with Yuvraj Singh not available and the Indian batting floundering match after match, Ganguly, vastly experienced, had staked his claim for a national spot. The prince had just taken a giant stride to reclaim his lost kingdom and in the process, had transcended this Duleep Trophy. The game, now, seems merely incidental to the feat. Tea ensued an over later and both selectors came down the stairs to welcome Ganguly to the dressing room with open arms. It was hard not to imagine that they might have been welcoming him back to the Indian team.
"I never played for money or fame but I always wanted to play for the sheer pride of representing Karnataka. Now though the selectors have not announced the Ranji probables list, I know I am not in that list and hence I don't think there is any point in me extending my career. I am announcing my retirement and I thank my family, friends, KSCA, teammates, my cricket clubs — City Cricketers and BUCC and my employer Canara Bank, for all their support," Bharadwaj said.