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Aug 7, 2011

Mendis and Dilshan tormented the Australians ............

Sri Lanka's captain Tillakaratne Dilshan struck a compelling century then marshalled his team neatly in the field to secure a 35-run victory over Australia in the first Twenty20 international in Kandy.
Sent in to bat at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, the hosts were headed for a total of about 150 before Dilshan (104, 57 balls, 12 fours, five sixes) and the allrounder Jeevan Mendis (29, 19 balls) combined for a stand of 104 runs in a mere 45 balls to lift the hosts to 198 for 3. Dilshan hammered 67 from his final 23 deliveries, a sequence that effectively decided the match.
The Australians' chase was undone by the flat offspin of the debutant Dilruwan Perera (3-26), who provided a reminder there is plenty of slow bowling depth for the Sri Lankans to utilise across the limited overs and Test series to take place through August and September. Rangana Herath (1-11) also posed plenty of problems, much as he had done on his debut against the Australians on their 1999 visit to the island.
Dilshan's was exactly the kind of opening statement a captain desires to make, providing plenty of evidence the Australians will be up against a feisty opponent on this tour. They will also need to sharpen their fielding, as fumbles were a recurring theme of the team's first international since a limited overs series in Bangladesh in April.
Mitchell Johnson, John Hastings and Shane Watson were all taken for more than 11 runs per over, while curiously the spin of Steve O'Keefe and Steve Smith was not fully utilised despite offering a greater level of economy than any of the faster men.
By contrast the Sri Lankans employed three spin bowlers in their defence of the target, and in truth no-one other than the belligerent David Warner (53) ever looked comfortable enough to impose serious pressure on the home attack.
Needing 10 runs an over virtually from the start, Australia's reply was inconvenienced by the early swing of Nuwan Kulasekara (2-39), who found a way through Watson in the third over. Warner was soon finding the boundary, and on one occasion cleared it with a line drive over the bowler's head.
Shaun Marsh was less settled, and misread the first over from the debutant Perera to be lbw for four. David Hussey appeared fortunate that no-one on the field was fully alert to an apparent thin edge behind off the bowling of Dhammika Prasad, but next over he was nowhere near a sharp off break from Perera that tilted middle stump.
Cameron White managed only one boundary before he too was defeated by a Perera offbreak that straightened from around the wicket, and at 63 for 4 Australia's chase was looking decidedly sick. It deteriorated further when Steven Smith was utterly confused by Herath and stumped, while Dilshan had the luxury of dropping Warner then being able to accept another chance. O'Keefe and Johnson provided nuisance value, but by then the equation would have been too steep even for Dilshan.
Brett Lee had shared the new ball with the left-arm spinner O'Keefe in a nod to a surface that offered some bounce but also turn. Mahela Jayawardene managed a pair of crisp boundaries to long-on and backward point, but in the third over squirted a Lee yorker into his stumps.
Dilshan immediately took the attack to Lee, following a top-edged hook for six with an artful glide through gully for four, meaning the over reaped 14 runs as well as a wicket. He then sought to unsettle Johnson with a series of impudent gestures. Dinesh Chandimal also made a bright start, but on 11 was hurried onto the back foot by Johnson's pace and slid ungracefully into his wicket - only the fifth such dismissal in T20 internationals, its rarity underlined by the bowler's miffed reaction.
Tensions were evident between Dilshan and Watson, the Australian firing a return throw towards the batsman, who fended it away with a glove. A curious appeal by the Australians posed the question about obstruction, as the game's laws have been changed to disallow any by a batsman out of his crease, but the umpires waved it away.
Kumar Sangakkara cracked boundaries over mid-off and square leg to raise a 50 stand with Dilshan, but the next over he flicked ineffectually at a Watson slower ball and handed a simple catch to Cameron White. Mendis announced himself with a reverse-swept boundary from the bowling of Smith, then gave a passing impression of no less a left-hander than Sangakkara himself with a pull shot of some flourish when Watson dropped fractionally short.
John Hastings' slower balls were losing their novelty, and Dilshan took a heavy toll by swinging thrice to the legside for boundaries either side of an exceptionally cheeky reverse-dab past short third man - the over was worth 20.
Mendis and Dilshan tormented the Australians in the closing overs, piling up 67 runs from overs 15-18 to turn a middling total into an intimidating one. Too often the touring bowlers missed the yorker length, and when they did strike it Dilshan's wrists were supple enough to send the ball skidding through gully to the rope.
On 84 when the final over began, Dilshan cracked a pair of sixes then mis-scooped a boundary to go to three figures, before adding another to take the Sri Lankans to the cusp of 200 - a total they would not have contemplated at 94-3. Australia's bowlers, and batsmen, have the task ahead of them.


Jul 10, 2011

Katich baggage left behind for Sri Lanka tour, says captain Clarke

A FRANK player meeting called by Australian captain Michael Clarke has cleared the air after Simon Katich's controversial axing before the team's tour of Sri Lanka.
The fallout over the veteran Test opener's inglorious dumping threatened to distract the players in the lead-up to next month's tour.
After missing out on a Cricket Australia contract, Katich sensationally revealed there was unease within the Test team about selection decisions, while Ricky Ponting and Shane Watson expressed their surprise over the opener's treatment.
But Clarke said every player was on the same page before the tour after starting a training camp in Brisbane with an honesty session.
''We had a couple of really good meetings on Sunday night, which were really open in an environment where guys were comfortable to voice their opinion,'' he said.
''It was a closed environment which gave everyone the freedom to be themselves and say what they feel, get everything on the table - it was very positive.
''We all walked out of that looking forward to what was in front of us.''
Australian coach Tim Nielsen admitted this week Katich's axing was a clear sign national selectors wanted to ''regenerate'' the team.
But Clarke said players wouldn't be ''looking over their shoulder'' on the Sri Lankan tour, where he will make his debut as full-time Test captain.
''Not at all,'' he said. ''The boys are now feeling very comfortable.
''Unfortunately, in this game some people do get dropped but it is about supporting your mates and getting the best out of your team.''
Australia will play two Twenty20s, five one-dayers and three Tests in Sri Lanka. The T20 and ODI squads have been named but the Test squad won't be announced until later this month.

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Muttiah Muralidaran - A statistical tribute

The final of ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 is a fitting setting for Muttiah Muralidaran to take his leave of the international cricket stage. Having taken a total of 1347 wickets in all international cricket so far, he will be hoping to put even more daylight between himself and the chasing pack. Second-placed Shane Warne is the only other player with more than a thousand, and the leading other current player is Brett Lee with “only” 676. If Murali's total of wickets is unlikely to be broken, how has he performed in the Reliance Mobile ICC Player Rankings over the course of his long career? 

Having made his Test debut in August 1992, his first three years brought him 81 wickets in 23 Tests at a respectable average of 33.88, but gave no real indication of the huge strides he was to make later in his career. However, 42 wickets in his next seven Tests propelled him to his first appearance in the top ten, which came in June 1997. At that time, the top four bowlers were all pacemen - Curtly Ambrose and Glenn McGrath led the way, tied on 861 points each, followed by Allan Donald and Wasim Akram. Murali had 715 points, but the only way was up from then onwards. 

It was another five years before Murali first hit the top spot, after taking 9-51 and 4-64 against Zimbabwe at Kandy in January 2002. That first innings was the occasion when he nearly made cricket history. Having taken all nine Zimbabwe wickets to fall on the first day's play, he had Travis Friend dropped by Russel Arnold at silly-point the following morning to narrowly miss becoming just the third bowler to take all ten wickets in a Test innings. 

That haul took him past Glenn McGrath at the top of the bowling rankings with a total of 907 points, and he scarcely dropped from the rarefied air of the 900-point mark for the next six and a half years. His peak came in July 2007 when he reached 920 points after taking 6-28 and 6-54 against Bangladesh at Kandy, a points tally only surpassed by three bowlers in the history of the game - Sydney Barnes, George Lohmann and Imran Khan. However, Murali's total set a new record for a spinner - going past Tony Lock's 912 points from 1958. 

He spent a total of 1711 days as the top-rated Test bowler - a fair way down the list, but it should be noted that far more Test Matches are played now than in previous generations. This places him 13th on that particular list, which is headed by Bill O'Reilly - who had the Second World War to boost him up to 3643 days on top. 

However, when we examine the number of Tests each bowler has spent in the number one position, Murali's total of 214 puts him on top. In fact the leading thee bowlers in this respect are all modern-day players, with Glenn McGrath (174 matches) and Curtly Ambrose (145 matches) filling the next two spaces on that list. By contrast, O'Reilly was top for just 24 matches. 

Murali made his ODI debut a year after his first Test appearance and his first 21 matches brought just 19 wickets at a cost of 40 runs apiece. He came to the fore as Sri Lanka triumphed in ICC Cricket World Cup 1996 in the Subcontinent, and his star rapidly rose in the shorter form of the game at the same time. He first cracked the top ten in early 1997 during a successful series in Sharjah, and he spent the vast majority of the next 12 years in the world's top ten. 

It was October 2000 when he first sneaked above Glenn McGrath and made it to top spot in the Reliance Mobile ICC Player Rankings for ODI bowlers. His figures of 7-30 against India at Sharjah were a world record for ODI cricket at the time and took him to 851 points. Two days later he took 3-6 in six overs against the same opposition to rise even further to 880 points, and he didn't move out of the top three for the next five years. 

However, unlike his domination of the Test bowling rankings, this period provided a large amount of tussling for positions at the top. From the time Murali first reached number one to when he finally relinquished it in October 2004, a number of other bowlers also enjoyed top spot. In fact, that period could well be considered one of the golden eras of ODI bowling with the Sri Lankan maestro having to share the limelight with Shaun Pollock, Glenn McGrath and team-mate Chaminda Vaas. 

Murali's peak points tally came in April 2002 when he had the astonishing figures of 10-3-9-5 against New Zealand at Sharjah. That performance propelled him up to 913 points, which is the fourth-highest achieved by anyone since ODI cricket started in 1971. Only Joel Garner (941), Richard Hadlee (924) and Shaun Pollock (917) have ever acquired more points, and by way of a comparison, today's top-ranked bowler Daniel Vettori has a total of 701. 

Despite this fierce competition for the top spot, Murali spent a total of 244 matches and 731 days at the top ranked bowler in ODI cricket. Whereas these are a fair way behind the respective leaders in those fields - Shaun Pollock (844 matches) and Curtly Ambrose (2057 days) - this represents a massive contribution given that he hardly ever had the opportunity to enjoy the new ball. 

By his own incredibly high standards, Murali's returns in One Day cricket in 2009 and 2010 were fairly modest, and it may have appeared as if his powers were somewhat on the wane as the effort of bowling more than 60 thousand deliveries in international cricket began to take its toll. But he roared back into action in ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 as 11 wickets in four matches helped Sri Lanka reach its third final. 

It would only be fair to make a passing mention of his batting. Always unorthodox, but occasionally very effective, he boasts 1261 Test runs and even has a fifty to his name with an innings of 67 against India at Kandy in 2001. He never quite made it into the world's top 100 in Test cricket, peaking at 102nd late in his career in 2009 after an innings of 29 against India at Kanpur. 

With fewer batting opportunities in ODI cricket, he peaked early in his career with 266 points and 112th position late in 1998. However, he was responsible for winning at least a couple of matches for Sri Lanka with the bat - notably against Bangladesh at Mirpur in early 2009 and against Australia at Melbourne in late 2010.

And so he takes his leave from the international stage as the top wicket-taker in both Test and One Day International cricket, will we ever see his like again? Possibly not, but one of the joys of cricket is that we never know quite what is around the corner and records are always there to be broken.

Jul 6, 2011

Skipper of T-20 , Left Out from the ODI's for Sri Lanka Tour....

Australian T 20 Skipper Cameron Leon White has been left out from ODI squad for Sri Lanka tour on August....
Mean while Left Hand opener Shaun Marsh included to the squad...
 "Kick in Gutz" named the mission for Sri Lanka tour... for ausis ...

Australia will play two T20s, five ODIs and three Test during the tour of Sri Lanka. The Twenty20 players fly out on July 30 and the remaining one-day squad members depart on August 5. The Test squad will be announced later in July. Meanwhile, Phillip Hughes and Jason Krejza have flown to Zimbabwe early to join the Australia squad, to replace Nic Maddinson (calf strain) and Matthew Wade (back) ahead of Friday's final one-day game.

Twenty20 squad Shane Watson, David Warner, Brad Haddin, Shaun Marsh, David Hussey, Cameron White (capt), Aaron Finch, Steven Smith, Steve O'Keefe, John Hastings, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, James Pattinson.
ODI squad Shane Watson, Brad Haddin, Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke (capt), Michael Hussey, David Hussey, Shaun Marsh, Steven Smith, John Hastings, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Xavier Doherty, James Pattinson, Doug Bollinger.

Jun 5, 2011

Chaturanga Kumara awarded a cricket scholarship

Sri Lanka Cricket is pleased to inform the Public and the Media, that Chaturanga Kumara has been awarded a cricket scholarship to represent South gate Cricket Club, in England as their overseas amateur player in the Middlesex League for the upcoming 2011 season.
Sri Lanka Cricket extends its gratitude to Asitha Jayaweera Chairman SLC U.K Committee for successfully Coordinating this facility to Chaturanga under SLC’s development initiatives to facilitate School boy Cricketers to play in the English minor league.
Chaturanga Scored 1007 runs and captured 75 wickets for his Alma Mater St Josephs College Colombo in 2009/2010 season, and was adjudicated as the School Boy Cricketer of the Year in the Bata/Times awards in the same year.
Chaturanga also represented the Sri Lanka under 19s team when England toured Sri Lanka in January 2011.

Jun 4, 2011

2006 SRI LANKAN Tour of ENGLAND.....

Some Stats of The Sri Lanka tour of England 2006

 ♪England v Sri Lanka at Lord's - May 11-15, 2006
Match drawn
♪England v Sri Lanka at Birmingham - May 25-28, 2006
England won by 6 wickets
 ♪England v Sri Lanka at Nottingham - Jun 2-5, 2006
Sri Lanka won by 134 runs


*MJ scored Brilliant Century at LORDS...
*1 Century n 6 Half Centuries For SL's 2nd INN at LORDS.
*Vandort Played Long Inn n get 100 at Edgebaston which SL lost.
*Murali Took 10 Wickets in Both Inns at Edgebaston.
*MJ made His 2nd Duck for the Series at TrentBridge (Nott)
*Murali made his 2nd 10 wkt haul at Nott. with Brilliant 8/70 in 2nd INN figures.
*KP scored 2 BIG tons in the Series.. 1 for Trescothicks as well
*Players of the series M Muralitharan


Kumar Sangakkara on this week's ICC Cricket World Radio Show

On this week's ICC Cricket World Radio Show, Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara talks exclusively ahead of the start of tomorrow's second Test match between Sri Lanka and England and also discusses his partnership with the International Cricket Council's Think Wise campaign while Dr. Peter Harcourt, the chair of the ICC Medical Committee, explains to listeners the role and importance of the committee.

Sangakkara, who has played in 95 Test matches to date for Sri Lanka says about the Cardiff loss and looking ahead to Lord's tomorrow: "Disappointing is an understatement about Cardiff in regards to our batting. We were horrendous. We know it and have accepted that. No one tries to have a performance like that. We have to take responsibility for that, I think Cardiff was a tough lesson for us and an important one for us as a team.

"We have a different bowling attack than England, we don't have the same height. It is a bit of guile, swing, seam and we bowl to our plans. We have a lot of ability and a lot of variation. How best to use that is something we will try to answer in the next five days."

The 33-year-old also talks about his work with ICC Think Wise partnership and why cricketers should be involved in the initiative to remove the stigma associated with HIV and AIDS.

"Its very important because cricketers are held in high esteem, highly visible public figures. With majority of AIDS affected people living in cricket playing countries, our roles become that much more important. Also the fact that we support people with HIV and AIDS, so that they can lead a fruitful life so that they can access good life. More and more cricketers should be associated with it. Not just one or two cricketers but having teams take on this responsibility, that is going to be the best way forward that will strengthen the role played by ICC," says Sangakkara. 


May 11, 2011

Results of ICC Cricket Committee meeting

The ICC Cricket Committee concluded its two-day meeting at Lord's in London on Wednesday.

Chaired by Clive Lloyd, the former West Indies captain and twice an ICC Cricket World Cup winner, it includes ex-Australia captain Mark Taylor, former India coach Gary Kirsten, former India captain Ravi Shastri, ex-West Indies fast bowler Ian Bishop and Clare Connor, the former captain of the England women's team.

The committee's role is to make recommendations on cricket matters which then go forward to the Chief Executives' Committee (CEC) for approval before finally being presented to the ICC Executive Board for approval.

As such, any recommendations made by the ICC Cricket Committee will not take effect until ratified and/or approved by the CEC and the Board, both of which are scheduled to meet in Hong Kong from 26 to 30 June.

The following were among the issues covered by the ICC Cricket Committee:

Decision Review System (DRS)

The ICC Cricket Committee reviewed in detail the use of the DRS since its last meeting and, while recognising the need to take account of existing contractual arrangements between Member Boards and their broadcasters, the committee unanimously recommended that DRS should be used in all Test matches.

It also recommended that it should be used in ODI and T20I series with each side allowed one unsuccessful review per innings. This recommendation was made following what the committee agreed was a successful application during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011.

The DRS has been used in Test cricket since 2009 and over the past two years has featured in 31 Tests with each side allowed two unsuccessful reviews per innings.

ICC Cricket Committee Chairman Clive Lloyd said: "The committee's recommendation that the DRS should be used in all formats of the game confirms two key conclusions that came from our discussions: it shows the group's confidence in the system and it also highlights the committee's view that it does aid the umpires in making correct decisions.

Day-night Test cricket

On the basis of evidence presented to it, the committee has concluded that the pink ball is likely to be the most effective ball for potential use in day-night Test cricket.

However, the committee believes the ball, which was trialed by the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) in Abu Dhabi in 2011, required further testing in first-class cricket to confirm its durability before it could recommend its adoption as a Test match ball as part of a move towards day-night Tests in the future.

On that basis, the committee has recommended that the pink ball should be used in the four-day first-class ICC Intercontinental Cup 2011-12 (the tournament involving the leading Associate and Affiliate teams) and also that ICC Member Boards be asked not only to use the ball in at least one round of first-class matches but also be encouraged to trial the ball in day-night matches at venues which have adequate artificial lights.

The committee will consider the matter further once these trials have taken place.

ICC General Manager - Cricket David Richardson said: "The ICC remains determined to explore the possibility of day-night Test cricket but at the same time we have to ensure the integrity of that format is also protected.

"The further trials proposed by the ICC Cricket Committee are a reflection of the fact we want to make sure that the pink ball is sufficiently durable to stand up to the rigours of first-class cricket.

"The ICC will conduct its own trials using the ICC Intercontinental Cup and, provided the move is approved by the Chief Executives' Committee and the Executive Board, we will then be able to secure the necessary information to allow us to make an informed decision on whether or not we can take this innovation to the next level, using a pink ball for day-night Tests in the future."

One-Day International (ODI) cricket

The committee was delighted to acknowledge the successful staging of the recent ICC Cricket World Cup and made the following recommendations to further enhance the ODI format:

* Two balls should be used in each innings, one from each end; (currently only one ball is being used and replaced by a replacement ball after 34 overs); and

* teams should only be allowed to take the batting and bowling power play between overs 16 - 40;

The committee also suggested that trials of the following playing conditions be conducted in domestic cricket before being considered for international cricket:

* Removal of the restriction on the maximum number of overs each bowler could deliver;

* no compulsory close-catchers;

* a maximum of four fielders outside the 30-yard fielding circle during non-powerplay overs; and

* the number of bouncers that can be delivered per over to be increased from one to two.

The recommendations are aimed at enhancing the format and creating an identity for ODIs distinct from the Test and T20I format by improving the balance between bat and ball. The committee also believes this would make the middle overs more exciting.

ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat said: "Notwithstanding the strong success of 50-over cricket at the recent ICC Cricket World Cup, I am delighted that the ICC Cricket Committee has been creative in seeking to enhance the format to ensure its continued future."

Over-rates in international cricket

The committee has recommended that a captain of an international side should be suspended for one match if his side is guilty of two minor over-rate offences in the same format over a 12-month period.

This recommendation would be a tightening of the current ICC Code of Conduct regulations which state that such a punishment is applicable only after three such offences.

The above recommendations are a reflection of the committee's ongoing concern at the current level of over-rates in international cricket.

Laws and playing conditions

The committee recommended that

* runners not be allowed in international cricket;
* the practice of a batsman intentionally changing his direction whilst running between the wickets with a view to blocking a run-out chance was contrary to the Laws (37.1) and that the batsman would be given out on appeal from the fielding side;
* the MCC amend law 42.15 to allow the bowler to run out the non-striker before releasing the ball provided he has not completed his usual delivery swing.

The next ICC Cricket Committee meeting will take place in November 2011 with the exact date and location to be announced in due course.

Media arrangements

SNTV will file a story. Further details should be available to SNTV subscribers through usual contacts.

Getty Images, the ICC's official photographer, has already filed photographs of the meeting, the first day of which was on Tuesday 10 May, and will also be releasing images from the media conference held after the meeting on Wednesday 11 May. Further details can be obtained from Andy Smith at or Richard Pitts at

The ICC Cricket Committee comprises:

Clive Lloyd (Chairman)

Haroon Lorgat (ICC Chief Executive - ex-officio)

Ian Bishop and Mark Taylor (past players, both attended the first day of the meeting)

Tim May (representative of current players)

Gary Kirsten (Full Member team coach representative)

Clare Connor (women's representative)

Justin Vaughan (member board representative)

Trent Johnston (associate representative)

Ravi Shastri (media representative)

Steve Davis (umpires' representative)

Ranjan Madugalle (referees' representative)

Keith Bradshaw (MCC representative)

David Kendix (statistician)


Sharad Pawar (ICC President - ex-officio)

Kumar Sangakkara (representative of current players)

Source : ICC Media Release - Wed, May 11, 2011 9:08 PM

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