Thursday, February 28, 2008

Harbhajan - an obnoxious weed

Hayden raised yet another controversy when he called Harbhajan, an obnoxious weed during his chat with a radio station. The series has been revolving around many controversies and this adds fuel to the fire.

Speaking on a Brisbane radio station, Hayden said: "It's been a bit of a long battle with Harbhajan, the first time I ever met him he was the same little obnoxious weed that he is now. His record speaks for itself in cricket. "There is a certain line that you can kind of go to and then you know where you push it and he just pushes it all the time. That's why he has been charged more than anyone that's ever played in the history of cricket."

Hayden accused the entire Indian team. The Indians replied back strongly by protesting on this issue and have asked the CA board to take strict action on this issue as it hurts a player very badly.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My disclosure policy

I here write my own disclosure policy. In this post I disclose and inform all of my readers that I will provide quality information and also thank them for visiting my blog. Sometimes for the development of my blog I may accept some posts for which I am compensated by good advertisers and I swear to fulfill their requirements. Thank you.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Martin Taylor receives death threats

Birmingham defender Martin Taylor has been the subject of death threats after his challenge on Eduardo left the Arsenal striker with a broken leg. Croatian fans, angry at Eduardo being ruled out of the Euro 2008 finals, are among supporters who have posted threatening messages on various internet sites. One website specifically set up after the incident during Saturday's 2-2 draw at St Andrews has already received 27,000 messages directed at the former Blackburn player.

But Taylor has received many messages of support from people inside the game of football which Blues manager Alex McLeish claimed had helped to limit the psychological damage he could have suffered. "I've heard about the death threats and you are going to ridiculous proportions if that is the case. You've just got to get on with it and dismiss those things. There are some crazy people in the world. "We have shown as a club we are right behind the big fellow. We have rallied around him, got him back into training. It was important he did that as soon as possible."

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger retracted his post-match statement about Taylor whom he claimed "should never play football again."

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Australia in finals of CB series

Australia, the world champions have easily secured a berth in the finals of the CB series with a win over Sri lanka in the group match. The task has been cut out for SriLanka who needs to win all of its remaining matches to find a place in the final. Meanwhile, India needed to win only 1 match to fight with the Aussies in the best of three finals.

Australia was restricted by Sri Lanka to 184 for 7 despite some sensible batting from vice captain Clarke and Mr. Cricket Hussey who guided their team to a respectable total. In reply. the Lankans could not pace their innings and also lost wickets which proved costly when rain interrupted the match. Australia won by the D-L method.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

IPL - Team Jaipur

Fine brains-trust in Shane Warne, Graeme Smith and Younis Khan. One captains an international side and the other two might have turned into fine leaders too.

No real athleticism in the side. Warne and Justin Langer aren't spring chickens and no one is likely to confuse Munaf Patel with Jonty Rhodes. Yusuf Pathan, with just one Twenty20 international, and Mohammad Kaif, who isn't even in the reckoning for a spot in the Indian national side, don't seem to deserve US$1.15 million between them.


Shane Warne (US$450,000)
Graeme Smith (US$475,000)
Younis Khan (US$225,000)
Kamran Akmal (US$150,000)
Yusuf Pathan (US$475,000)
Mohammad Kaif (US$675,000)
Munaf Patel (US$275,000)
Justin Langer (US$200,000)

IPL - Team Delhi

As of now, they look the best fielding side in the fray. Tillakaratne Dilshan and AB de Villiers lead the way while Dinesh Karthik, Shoaib Malik, Gautam Gambhir and Manoj Tiwary make up a seriously good back-up.

All their specialist bowlers are foreign players. Each team will be allowed only four overseas players in their starting XI and it could turn into a handicap at some stage. AB de Villiers is one of the best fielders going around. He can also turn games with the bat. At US$300,000 Delhi got him for a song. TA Sekhar, the bowling coach with the MRF pace foundation, is involved with sports administration in Delhi. That might be one of the reasons they picked up the accurate duo of Mohammad Asif and Glenn McGrath.


Virender Sehwag (icon)
Daniel Vettori (US$625,000)
Shoaib Malik (US$500,000)
Mohammad Asif (US$650,000)
AB de Villiers (US$300,000)
Dinesh Karthik (US$525,000)
Farveez Maharoof (US$225,000)
Tillakaratne Dilshan (US$250,000)
Manoj Tiwary (US$675,000)
Gautam Gambhir (US$725,000)
Glenn McGrath (US$350,000)

IPL - Team Bangalore

A bowling attack capable of surprising. Dale Steyn provides the speed while Zaheer Khan and Nathan Bracken are contrasting left-arm seamers who can bowl at the death.

In Wasim Jaffer, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Rahul Dravid and Jacques Kallis they probably have one stodgy player too many. Not the ideal set of batsmen you would want while chasing 200 in 20 overs. Cameron White, who has played just one Twenty20 international for Australia, seems a strange pick at US$500,000. However, his strike-rate of 160 in domestic Twenty20 games, as well as his ability to bowl legspin, might have tilted the scales.


Rahul Dravid (icon)
Anil Kumble (US$500,000)
Jacques Kallis (US$900,000)
Zaheer Khan (US$450,000)
Mark Boucher (US$450,000)
Cameron White (US$500,000)
Wasim Jaffer (US$150,000)
Dale Steyn (US$325,000)
Nathan Bracken (US$325,000)
Shivnarine Chanderpaul (US$200,000)

IPL - Team Mumbai

A ballistic top order that includes Sachin Tendulkar, Sanath Jayasuriya and Robin Uthappa.

No wicketkeeper yet. It means they might have to settle on a domestic wicketkeeper, not an ideal situation in a high-pressure contest. Harbhajan Singh, at US$850,000, must be termed a pricey deal. There's a buzz doing the rounds that his friendship with Sachin Tendulkar, Mumbai's icon player, could have sealed his spot.


Sachin Tendulkar (icon)
Sanath Jayasuriya (US$975,000)
Harbhajan Singh (US$850,000)
Shaun Pollock (US$550,000)
Robin Uthappa (US$800,000)
Lasith Malinga (US$350,000)
Dilhara Fernando (US$150,000)
Loots Bosman (US$175,000)

IPL - Team Kolkata

Shah Rukh Khan's side has gone for the crowd pullers. Shoaib Akhtar, Ricky Ponting, Chris Gayle and Ishant Sharma give Sourav Ganguly a real star cast.

Two of their four fast bowlers - Shoaib Akhtar and Ajit Agarkar - are prone to be erratic. While one frequently breaks down, the other often blows hot and cold. Umar Gul at US$150,000 must go down as one of the best bargains. A bowler capable of firing in yorkers under pressure, and who finished as the highest wicket-taker in the World Twenty20 in South Africa, must be worth more.

In contrast to the canny deal for Gul, the US$950,000 they splashed on rookie fast bowler Ishant Sharma is perplexing. While he has been outstanding on the Australian tour, he is still untested at the Twenty20 level and doesn't yet have the star power to command such a high valuation.


Sourav Ganguly (icon)
Shoaib Akhtar (US$425,000)
Ricky Ponting (US$400,000)
Brendon McCullum (US$700,000)
Chris Gayle (US$800,000)
Ajit Agarkar (US$330,000)
David Hussey (US$675,000)
Ishant Sharma (US$950,000)
Murali Kartik (US$425,000)
Umar Gul (US$150,000)
Tatenda Taibu (US$125,000)

IPL - Team Mohali

Fine balance in the bowling with two genuine quicks (Brett Lee and Sreesanth), a swing bowler (Irfan Pathan) and two spinners (Ramesh Powar and Piyush Chawla).

Not much firepower at the top. They need a batsman who can kickstart the innings. Their coach Tom Moody, who had a successful two-year stint as Sri Lanka's coach up to the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies, could have had a say in Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara being included.


Yuvraj Singh (icon)
Mahela Jayawardene (US$475,000)
Kumar Sangakkara (US$700,000)
Brett Lee (US$900,000)
Sreesanth (US$625,000)
Irfan Pathan (US$925,000)
Ramesh Powar (US$170,000)
Piyush Chawla (US$400,000)
Simon Katich (US$200,000)
Ramnaresh Sarwan (US$225,000)

IPL - Team Hyderabad

Packed with explosive power-hitters. Expect sixes to fly as Adam Gilchrist, Andrew Symonds, Herschelle Gibbs and Shahid Afridi tee off. They also have some solidity in the middle with Rohit Sharma and Chamara Silva capable of making up for a collapse.

With three left-arm seamers in RP Singh, Chaminda Vaas and Nuwan Zoysa, they lack bowling variety. At US$175,000, Scott Styris is a steal. Capable of big hits and intelligent nudges, Styris brings an additional dimension to the side. Take into account his useful medium-pace, and you have a potential MVP for the IPL.


Adam Gilchrist (US$700,000)
Andrew Symonds (US$1.35 million)
Herschelle Gibbs (US$575,000)
Shahid Afridi (US$675,000)
Scott Styris (US$175,000)
VVS Laxman (US$375,000)
Rohit Sharma (US$750,000)
Chamara Silva (US$100,000)
RP Singh (US$875,000)
Chaminda Vaas (US$200,000)
Nuwan Zoysa (US$110,000)

IPL - Team Chennai

With six left-hand batsmen in their line-up, Chennai pose a big threat. Matthew Hayden, Jacob Oram and Albie Morkel will be expected to strike the big ones while Stephen Fleming, Suresh Raina and Parthiv Patel can consolidate. Adding to the mix is Mahendra Singh Dhoni, the most prized player in the league.

In a format where spinners have thrived, Muttiah Muralitharan is the only spinner so far. Expect a few more slow bowlers when they finalise the rest of their squad. Albie Morkel is a useful allrounder but even he might be a bit shocked with the US$675,000 that was shelled out for him.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni (US$1.5 million)
Muttiah Muralitharan (US$600,000)
Matthew Hayden (US$375,000)
Jacob Oram (US$675,000)
Stephen Fleming (US$350,000)
Parthiv Patel (US$325,000)
Joginder Sharma (US$225,000)
Albie Morkel (US$675,000)
Suresh Raina (US$650,000)
Makhaya Ntini (US$200,000)
Michael Hussey (US$350,000)

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Real Madrid on the backfoot

Spanish giants Real Madrid has now lost 2 big matches and mostly will lose its dominance in the respective leagues. First, they were shocked by Real Betis with a stunner from Royston Drenthe who netted the equalizer. This was a source of inspiration for Betis who went on to score another 2 goals within a short period of time to avoid potential relegation. In the next match, the crucial Champions League encounter with AS Roma, Madrid could not come to terms right from the word go. Losing this match, they now find it very difficult to enter the next round.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Ronaldo injured

The Brazilian and AC Milan striker Ronaldo will be out of action for the next 9 months when his tendons once again got injured during a Serie A match with Livorno. He was immediately transferred to Paris where he underwent a surgery. Some say that it is a career threatening injury and one may not see him in action forever. But doctors are confident enough saying that he will take to the field after rehabilitation program.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

New Zealand thrash England by 10 wickets

England lost the second ODI to New Zealand and hence needed to win the remaining 3 matches to win the cup. The match was totally an one sided affair in the rain affected match. England, from a very good situation fell cheaply primarily because of good bowling from the Kiwis. England were all out for 158 which is very bad considering the position they were in. In reply, the 2 dashing batsmen of New Zealand McCullum and Ryder both got into the act and proved a nemesis for the English bowlers. McCullum smashed 80 runs from 50 odd balls while Ryder too matched his senior opponent with 79 runs from the bat. With this match, I am sure that the English players morale would be low.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Yet another racial assault

There was yet another racial assault on one of the players. This time, its not between Bhajji and Symonds but in an entirely different game. F! sensation Lewis Hamilton was subjected to racist taunts by the small section of crowd that was present during the training session held at the Catalunya circuit. F1 governing board said that they would take strict steps on this issue and if proved, would ban this circuit from the list of races every year. This could prove as a setback to the other Spanish fans.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Styris retires from Test cricket

Scott Styris, the stylish middle order batsman from New Zealand has announced his retirement from Test cricket to concentrate more on ODI's and T20 formats. This comes as a real blow to the team after Astle, Vincent and now Fleming who have announced retirement from this format of the game. Though not a versatile batsman, he can produce some match winning knocks in the middle order. He averages 36 from his 29 test appearances. Without Shane Bond, NZ have become a very depleted side and with England tour on the cards, its very difficult to see how they perform well.