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Aug 26, 2010

India go to final with a comprehensive win

Praveen Kumar seized 3 early wickets and Virender Sehwag smashed a superb century as India entered the tri-series final with an insistent 105-run win over New Zealand.

Virender SehwagIndia, with 10 points from four matches, will clash with Sri Lanka in the final on Saturday. New Zealand finished their league travels with seven points.

Praveen Kumar finished with 3-34 as New Zealand, chasing a 224-run target, were shot out for 118 in 30.1 overs, their lowest total against India in ODI internationals.

India were thankful to Sehwag for posting a competitive total as the hard-hitting opener splintered one six and 16 fours in a 93-ball 110 for his 13th ODI hundred.

India virtually wrapped up the match when they sent New Zealand struggling at 22-4 in the 9th over, with P.Kumar taking 3 wickets.

Tail-ender Kyle Mills hammered an entertaining 52 for his second half-century in one-dayers, but his knock came too late to stop India from the winning the match.

Aug 25, 2010

Injured Jacob Oram heading back home

Going into a do-or-die match against India in order to be eligible for the final, New Zealand face a couple of injury problems with Jacob Oram heads back home after he failed to recuperate from his knee injury while Kane Williamson is still stressed to recover from a bicep niggle.

Jacob OramHowever, the good news for NZ is that Martin Guptill is fit and would be return to open the batting for New Zealand in their do-or-die game against India.

On the position of side's fitness, Ross Taylor said Kane Williamson has a bicep niggle and would be observed more before a final decision is reached.

"Martin Guptill is fit and raring to go. Kane Williamson has got a bit of bicep injury and he will be under inspection. He did not bowl or throw yesterday. We will have to wait and see how it goes. And if he gets through that, we will just have to wait and see on selection," he said in the pre-match conference.

Aug 23, 2010

India big loses to Sri Lanka by 8 wickets

India suffered its big One-Day International crush in terms of balls remaining, as Sri Lanka beaten into the final of the tri-series Micromax Cup with a resounding 8 wicket victory in the 5th ODI here on Sunday.

Till date, India's largest defeat in terms of balls remaining was 174 against Australia at Sydney in 1981. India had scored 63 and Australia responded with 64 for one in that match.

Playing first, India could score a paltry 103 runs in 33.4 overs. It was their 3rd lowest total against the Sri Lanka.

The 21-year-old Thisara Perera (5/28) ripped through the Indian middle order with a fine exhibition of swing bowling.

The Sri Lankans flustered up the required runs of 104 in just 15.1 overs and gaine a bonus point and moved into the final.

Tillakaratne Dilshan (35) and Mahela Jayawardene (33) virtually toyed with the Indian bowlers as they stealed runs at will to set up the chase brilliantly.

The hosts completed their all league matches with 11 points.

India will have to now must win its last match against New Zealand on Wednesday to reach in the final.

India have five points while New Zealand have seven points in the ongoing ODI tri-series.

Aug 19, 2010

Suraj Randiv suspended for one ODI match

Miffed by the no ball controversy, SLC cracked the whip on its players by suspending spinner Suraj Randiv for one ODI match and striking a fine on Thillakaratne Dilshan for his role in grudging Virender Sehwag a century.

Skipper Kumar Sangakkara was also warning and has been advised to ensure that repetition of such incidents do not occur in future.

"Suraj Randiv has been suspended for the next match against New Zealand and his match fee for the India Vs Sri Lanka match on August 16, 2010, has been forfeited," SLC said in a statement.

" Thillakaratne Dilshan's suggestion in this issue has resulted in his match fee for the same match also being forfeited."

"Furthermore, Skipper Sangakkara, too has been advised to make sure that repetition of such incidents do not occur, where disrepute will be brought to the game of Cricket, affecting the spirit of the game," the statement added.

The conclusion to take disciplinary action against the players was taken by the 6-member committee which meets this afternoon to take action on the references of team manager who probed the 'no ball' controversy.

"SLC is extremely proud of its team and their achievements over the years. It is of paramount importance to maintain the discipline of the Gentlemen's game, especially with Sri Lanka Cricket being winners of the 'ICC Spirit of the Game' award for two consecutive years," the statement said.

Aug 18, 2010

Idea for no-ball came from Tillakaratne Dilshan

A newspaper report in Sri Lanka has claimed that the instructions to Suraj Randiv to bowl a no-ball and deny Virender Sehwag a century came from Tillakaratne Dilshan.

SLC has ordered an internal investigates into the no-ball controversy and is yet to make its report official, but according to 'The Island' the idea to bowl a no-ball came from Dilshan.

According to the newspaper, Dilshan, who was fielding at cover point, shouted in Sinhalese 'oney nam, no ball ekak danna puluwan' (if you want, you can bowl a no ball).

The report added that none of the Sri Lankan players reacted to Dilshan's advice to bowl the no ball.

The controversial incident happened with the scores level and Sehwag batting on 99 not out, on which Randiv over-stepped the crease by a very big margin, thus ending the game and leaving Sehwag stranded on 99. Randiv's act was destined by most observers as not being in the spirit of the game.

At the post match press conference, captain Kumar Sangakkara had said, "If it was deliberate, I will have to have a chat with him and make sure it does not happen again. I will have to see also whether there was any talk about it on the field, prior to that delivery."

Sangakkara also came under the scanner as he was heard instructing Randiv in Sinhalese "If he hits the ball, he gets the run" after Sri Lanka Cricket examined the audio feed from the stump microphone to determine whether any player had played a role in coaxing Randiv to bowl a no-ball.

Dilshan, who was the skipper of the Sri Lankan side in a tri-series in Zimbabwe this year after senior players including Sangakkara was rested, is incidentally Sehwag's team-mate at the IPL side Delhi Daredevils.

Embarrassed by the controversial episode, Sri Lanka Cricket yesterday initiated an inquiry under team manager Anura Tennekoon even as Randiv and top SLC officials offered apologies to calm the furore.

Sangakkara under scanner for no-ball controversy

SLC was examining stump microphone audios to decide whether skipper Kumar Sangakkara or any of his teammates had played a role in coaxing Suraj Randiv to bowl a 'no-ball' to prevent Virender Sehwag from scoring a century.

Sources said that SLC had wanted the tapes from the official broadcasters to investigate as what transpired between the bowler and his teammates during the fag end of the tri-series match.

Sehwag was just one short of his 13th ODI century when Randiv, who had not bowled a no ball in the Test or ODI series this season, bowled one which was hit by the opener for a six.

However, it did not count because the no ball amounted to India's winning run leaving Sehwag on an unbeaten 99.

According to audio tapes, captain Sangakkara had heard instructing Randiv in Sinhalese "If he hits the ball, he gets the run".

Although it appeared to be an inoffensive comment, some TV channels were interpreting it as an attempt to influence the young bowler to overstep the line and deny Sehwag what could have been his 13th ODI century.

Sangakkara has, however, maintained that he had only asked Randiv to keep the ball tight and not allow Sehwag score a run.

According to a SLC source, the report of the manager, who has been asked to start an inquiry into the incident, would be submitted to the board tomorrow.

Aug 17, 2010

Randiv has apologized to Sehwag

Indian openning Virender Sehwag has said that Sri Lankan spinner Suraj Randiv, who starved of him a hundred in last night's ODI tri-series match by deliberately bowling a no-ball, has apologized for his conduct.

Sehwag was just one run short of his 13th ODI hundred when Randiv, who had not bowled a no-ball in the Test or ODI series in this period, bowled one which was hit by Sehwag for a six.

However, it did not count because the no-ball amounted to India's winning run leaving Sehwag on an unbeaten 99.

Randiv's antics were criticized by Sehwag in the post match press conference but the issue is now being closed after the Lankan bowler offered apologies.

"Randiv came to my room and apologized," Sehwag wrote on his Twitter page.

India comprehensively won by 6 wickets last night's match but the conduct of the Sri Lankan team upset the visitors' camp.

Minutes after the game, a furious Sehwag told reporters that Sri Lanka had used such tactics earlier also, pointing out that they had left Sachin Tendulkar stranded at 96 with a same strategy in a match in Cuttack.

Sri Lankan Cricket, on its part, has already conveyed its apologies for the incident to the Indians and has even promised action after getting the team manager's report on the matter.

Sehwag powers India to win 6 wickets with unbeaten 99

India earlier put in a restricted bowling performance to bowl Sri Lanka out for 170.

Praveen Kumar (2-20) rocked Sri Lankan's top order when he bowled Upul Tharanga with the very 1st ball of the match and then fascinated former skipper Mahela Jayawardene leg-before in his 4th over.

Left-arm spinners Pragyan Ojha (3-36) and Ravindra Jadeja (2-34) also kept up the pressure as India never allowed the hosts to build a big partnership.

Tillakaratne Dilshan top-scored with a fighting 45 in Sri Lanka's disappointing batting performance after the hosts elected to bat.

Dilshan was the 5th man to be dismissed, sweeping Ojha to Rohit Sharma at mid-wicket after hitting 5 fours in his 62-ball knock.

Sri Lanka, struggling at 103-7 in the 32nd over, managed to cross the 150-mark, thanks to gutsy knocks from Randiv (43) and Nuwan Kulasekara (22). Randiv hit four boundaries in his 61-ball knock. Ishant Sharma took 2-32.

Virender Sehwag hit two sixes and 11 fours in his 100-ball knock as India raced to the 171-run target with more than 15 overs to spare in the day-night match for their 1st win in this odi Series.

Sehwag, 31, was one short of his 13th one-day hundred when the match ended with off-spinner Suraj Randiv's no-ball, which was eventually smashed for a six by the batsman.

Aug 16, 2010

Yuvraj downhill with dengue, out of SL ODI Series

In yet another gust to India's campaign at the ongoing cricket tri-series, Yuvraj Singh was today ruled out of tomorrow's ODI against Sri Lanka after being diagnosed with dengue.

"Yuvraj Singh is not available for this game. He has dengue. But he is out of danger," Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni revealed at the pre-match press conference.

Yuvraj has been fighting poor form and fitness for pretty some while and the latest setback just adds to his miseries.

He missed the 2nd Test against Sri Lanka due to flu and was teased as "water boy" by fans when he came to the field to hand out drinks to his teammates.

Others on the uncertain starters list are pacers Ashish Nehra, tending a thigh strain, and Ishant Sharma, who is recuperating from a knee injury.

"We are monitoring Ashish Nehra. He has got a bit of problem with his glute. So we will take the exact decision before the game. Ishant is shaping well. As of now these are the two players who may be missing out," Dhoni said.

"And hopefully by tomorrow there won't be any addition to the list," he added.

Dhoni, however, dismissed reports that Dinesh Karthik, who injure his hand during the practice session yesterday, is doubtful.

"Dinesh Karthik got hit on his thumb but he is fine and it is not a major concern," he said.

The injury-ravaged team is already without pacer Zaheer Khan and openning batsman Gautam Gambhir.

Aug 9, 2010

Klusener may take over as Bangladesh bowling coach

Former South African all-rounder Lance Klusener may soon be appointed Bangladesh's new bowling coach.

The post has been lying vacant since former Sri Lankan pacer Champaka Ramanayake left the job due to illness.

"I'm in negotiations with them, it's not finalised yet," Klusener said.

"There are a couple of things that need clarification, I hope to have it finalised in the next week," Klusener told 'Cricinfo'.

If appointed, this will be Klusener's 1st international coaching assignment after completing a level-three course at Cricket South Africa's High Performance Centre in Pretoria.

The Bangladesh Cricket Board is reportedly also looking for a fielding coach after deciding against extending Mohammad Salahuddin's contract.