Team management wanted Nehra, Yuvraj
East struggling to form team
Calcutta FC win
Utpal, Roma to lead Bengal
Mysore Racing/ Upset win for Crystal Sky

 
 
TEAM MANAGEMENT WANTED NEHRA, YUVRAJ 
 
 
BY LOKENDRA PRATAP SAHI
 
Calcutta, June 13: 
The Indian team’s thinktank is unlikely to be very pleased with the XIV picked for the tri-series in Zimbabwe, beginning June 23.

As was reported by The Telegraph on Monday, it is understood the thinktank wanted allrounder Yuvraj Singh and had no intentions of sending back left-arm quick Ashish Nehra after the Test series.

Captain Sourav Ganguly, coach John Wright and vice-captain Rahul Dravid also desired that Virender Sehwag and Reetinder Singh Sodhi, allrounders both, should fly over ahead of the tri-series.

This was formally conveyed to the selectors via a fax. Additionally, Sourav himself spoke to chief selector Chandu Borde this morning.

But while the selectors obliged by picking Sehwag and Sodhi, they preferred Harvinder Singh over Nehra and opted for Dinesh Mongia at the expense of Yuvraj.

According to well-placed sources, a majority of the selectors felt Yuvraj is “being sold too hard” and that he had done precious little after his MoM award-winning 84 against Australia in the ICC KnockOut, back in October.

Also, their argument was that Mongia deserved more than the two chances he got in the recent home series versus Australia. In Pune, Mongia faced six balls before being run out for two and in Indore, scored four off five.

Nehra being overlooked is, of course, more intriguing. Moreover, absolutely amazing must rank Borde’s remark in Mumbai this afternoon: “Nehra is a good Test bowler (only).”

When Nehra hasn’t played a single ODI, how is he deemed useless for cricket’s shorter version? The answer, perhaps, is known only to Borde.

Though the thinktank wanted both Nehra and Debashish Mohanty to be retained, a majority of the selectors were firm in that Harvinder would have to be rewarded for some excellent work in the season just ended.

It couldn’t be confirmed, but there is talk the thinktank did indicate that if one quick (besides Jawagal Srinath, that is) had to be sent back, then the axe should fall on Mohanty. In that eventuality, even their choice would be Harvinder.

If this is true then Ashok Malhotra, East’s representative on the selection committee, would have had a gruelling time.

Obviously, that Harvinder (ex-Punjab and now Railways) is a superb fielder — hardly the most impressive part of either Nehra or Mohanty’s CV — stood him in good stead.

Harvinder, though, hasn’t played international cricket since April 1998. His last appearance was against Australia, in Sharjah. The 23-year-old has 13 ODI caps (20 wickets), with his debut being in the second Sahara Cup (1997), versus Pakistan. He also has two Test appearances.

While domestic performances should get recognised, one cannot but feel sorry for Nehra, easily the best bowler on tour thus far in Zimbabwe.

Nehra’s morale would, in any case, have been low after being taken off (the first Indian to be ‘punished’ thus) in the second innings of the Bulawayo Test. Now, he won’t even be there for the tri-series.

Hardly the ideal tune-up for the second (and final) Test, beginning in Harare Friday. But, then, most selection committees have been known to be utterly myopic.

The next few days will be a real test for the man-management skills of both Sourav and Wright.

   

 
 
EAST STRUGGLING TO FORM TEAM 
 
 
BY A STAFF REPORTER
 
Calcutta, June 13: 
With inter-zonal matches around the corner, the East Zone Cricket Academy is in a spot of bother. Seven of the 23 trainees at the city unit are not fit to play right now.

While Sourav Sarkar, Mayukh Biswas, Subhas Chakraborty and Ritesh Jaiswal are down with chicken pox, Bikramjit Bhowmick has probably been infected too. He has been down with high fever since this morning.

Apart from those down with chicken pox, Niranjan Behera and Bunty Biswal have injuries, with the latter nursing a broken finger.

Though Sourav and Mayukh are expected to be fit in a few days, chances of the rest playing in the first match against South Zone in Bangalore on June 28 appears bleak.

“Some of these players are important members of the team and their absence may be a big blow,” said Barun Burman, one of the coaches. Jaiswal’s illness, he said, will be bad for the team as he is a wicketkeeper who can also bat.

Indoor practice facilities at the Academy are not yet ready and the trainees have had a tough time practising in the rain.

   

 
 
CALCUTTA FC WIN 
 
 
BY A STAFF REPORTER
 
Calcutta, June 13: 
Calcutta Football Club beat Behala Youth 2-0 in an IFA Shield cluster match in Purulia today. In other matches, City AC drew goalless with Howrah Union in Shyamnagar. In Sodepur, Police AC overcame Customs 3-0, while Khidderpore beat Bali Pratibha 2-0 at Chinsurah.

In Srirampur, Eastern Railway beat Bowbazar YMSA 3-0. Aikya Sammilani were held 0-0 by Kalighat in Balurghat.

In an inter-club transfer, Arunabha Sarkar joined Mohammedan Sporting from George Telegraph.

Bagan youngsters lose

In today’s IFA Nursery League tie, Bagha Shome Football Institute beat Mohun Bagan 2-0. Somnath Das scored early in the first half with Deepjyoti Roy doubling the lead in the second.

Demand for water

The IFA joint secretary Ranjit Gupta and vice-president Ajoy Ganguli visited the mayor today, requesting him to install water tanks at the 14 grounds where League matches will be held. Water tanks have been put up at four venues.

State aquatics

More than 300 boys and girls will participate in the state age-group aquatic championships from tomorrow to Saturday. Swimming and waterpolo will be held at Calcutta Sports Association, while diving events will be at the Central Swimming Club.    

 
 
UTPAL, ROMA TO LEAD BENGAL 
 
 
BY A STAFF REPORTER
 
Calcutta, June 13: 
Utpal Dutta and Roma Jaiswal will the Bengal boys’ and girls’ squads, respectively, in the 52nd national basketball meet to be held in Bhilai from June 17 to 24.

SQUADS

BOYS: Utpal Dutta (captain), Souvik Bhattacharya, Rajdeep Dhar, Uday Bhanu Chatterjee, Ambarish Pal, Julfikar Alam, Prasant Malhotra, Zafar Hussain, Avnish Subbha, Prosenjit Das, Navneet Singh, Satyendra Singh. Coach: Pradip Tiwari.

GIRLS: Roma Agarwal (captain), Saida Firdaus, Mandira Sahana, Keya Das, Mamta Sahana, Zahira Ansari, Sampurna Choudhury, Anita Agarwal, Sutapa Mondal, Rekha Das, Sarika Sharma, Priyanka Kumari. Coach: Bhaskar Das.

   

 
 
MYSORE RACING/ UPSET WIN FOR CRYSTAL SKY 
 
 
BY TITAN BOY
 
Mysore, June 13: 
Ridden by Harish, the Padmanabhan-trained Crystal Sky posted an upset victory in the T. V. Reddy Memorial Trophy at the Mysore races held on Wednesday.

RESULTS

(With inter-state dividends)

1. Carnival Plate, Div-II 1,200m: (10-2-9) Starry Splendour (Ram-esh) 1; Random Hearts 2; Perfect Pursuit 3. Won by: 3/4; 1/2; (1-18.1). Tote: Win Rs 63; Place: 22; 16; 193; Quinella: 72; Tanala: 5,008. Fav: Random Hearts (2).

2. Red Chieftan Plate, Div-II 1,400m: (2-6-8) Galleon De Espania (Rajinder) 1; Cassini 2; Ultima 3. Won by: 1/2; 2-1/4; (1-30.5). Tote: Win Rs 134; Place: 24; 12; 48; Quinella: 69; Tanala: 2,637. Fav: Cassini (6).

3. Carnival Plate, Div-I 1,200m: (9-8-7) High Zoom (Imran K.) 1; Portalino 2; Aethion 3. Not run: Ever Ever (5). Won by: 1-1/2; 2; (1-17.5). Tote: Win Rs 69; Place: 21; 13; 23; Quinella: 83; Tanala: 1,001. Fav: Portalion (8).

4. Capt. Nabi Khan Memorial Plate 1,400m:(1-3-2) Flying Scotsman (S. Narredu) 1; Golden Throne 2; Alektryon 3. Won by: 5-1/2; 10; (1-28.6). Tote: Win Rs 11; Place: 10; 13; 23; Quinella: 19; Tanala: 48. Fav: Flying Scotsman (1).

5. Red Chieftan Plate, Div-I 1,400m: (6-3-8) Kylin (Marshall) 1; Imperial Weapon 2; Simon 3. Won by: Dist; 2-3/4; (1-29.9). Tote: Win Rs 18; Place: 11; 14; 54; Quinella: 44; Tanala: 466. Fav: Kylin (6).

6. T. V. Reddy Memorial Trophy 1,600m: (6-2-5) Crystal Sky (Harish) 1; Kilmarnock 2; Sunspirit 3. Not run: Bullet (1). Won by: 1/2; 1-3/4; (1-43.2). Tote: Win Rs 61; Place: 20; 10; 18; Quinella: 37; Tanala: 656. Fav: Kilmarnock (2).

7. Hunsur Plate, Div-II 1,200m: (9-2-1) Ratn (S. Kumar) 1; Red Red Wine 2; Empress of India 3. Won by: 6-1/4; 1-1/2; (1-16.6). Tote: Win Rs 128; Place: 34; 23; 13; Quinella: 243; Tan-ala: 2,745. Fav: Empress of India (1).

8. Kengeri Plate 1,600m: (9-7-3) Black Flower (Imran K.) 1; Golden Bell 2; Genting Highlands 3. Not run: Love And Honor (2). Won by: 4; Hd; (1-44). Tote: Win Rs 28; Place: 14; 14; 31; Quinella: 46; Tanala: 586. Fav: Black Flower (9).

9. Hunsur Plate, Div-I 1,200m: (4-7-3) Brompton Road (M. Suresh) 1; Almond 2; Baaja Bajaav 3. Won by: 3/4; 1-3/4; (1-16.7). Tote: Win Rs 141; Place: 30; 16; 24; Quinella: 407; Tanala: 12,995. Fav: Ornate Crown (1).

Jackpot: Rs 36,077; (C) Rs 1,834.

Treble: (i) Rs 537; (ii) Rs 194; (iii) Rs 3,639.
   
 

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