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Javed Burki arrested

Islamabad: Pakistan’s former cricket captain and senior bureaucrat Javed Burki has been arrested by a military-led anti-corruption force, officials said on Thursday.

Burki, 64, who played 25 Tests in the 1960s and 70s and was captain in five of them, was picked up by the National Accountability Bureau late Wednesday from his residence in Islamabad. “Burki has been arrested on corruption-related charges,” Bureau spokesman Mohammad Ali said.

Burki was head of the Pakistan Automobile Corporation until 1998, but Ali declined to confirm whether the corruption charges were related to his tenure in the state-run organisation.

Tie-break and heart-break

London: British scientists have found medical evidence of something every football fan already knows — penalty shoot-outs are literally heart-stoppers. The British Medical Journal said that researchers who studied England’s 1998 World Cup soccer matches found that heart attacks increased by 25 percent when England lost to Argentina after a gripping penalty shoot-out. Researchers from the University of Bristol and University of Birmingham found that the risk of hospital admission for heart attacks increased by 25 percent on June 30 — the day of the England-Argentina match — and the following two days.

Romania ban Olympians

Bucharest: Romania banned three former Olympic medalists from refereeing and coaching in official events for five years after appearing in an adult movie in Japan, officials said on Thursday. Romanian dailies reported that Lavinia Milosovici, 26 who won the floor exercise and vault titles at the 1992 Barcelona Games and two other gymnasts had appeared in a nude picture book published in Japan and performed naked gym routines in a movie.

Sack Van Gaal, says Rivaldo

Madrid: Former Barcelona forward Rivaldo says the troubled Catalan club should sack coach Louis van Gaal.

The Dutchman is under intense pressure because of Barcelona’s dismal form in the league. “The solution is to change the coach,” the Brazilian told Spanish sports daily Marca on Thursday. “If that happens the players and fans will recover their enthusiasm again.”

“I am not saying this just to be spiteful, it is simply the case that I do not like the way he works.”

Rivaldo joined AC Milan after rescinding his contract with Barcelona in July, making it clear the return of Van Gaal was the reason behind his decision to leave.

Slovakia appeal

Bratislava: The Slovak football association (SFZ) are to appeal against the fine imposed on them by Uefa earlier this week for racist abuse levelled by their fans at England players during a Euro 2004 qualifier in October.

The $42,050 fine, punishment for abuse directed at England’s Emile Heskey and Ashley Cole during the match in Bratislava, was the second highest penalty ever handed out by Uefa for racist behaviour.

Spokeswoman Karolina Ducka said the SFZ had decided to appeal the decision.

Rio defers return

Manchester: Rio Ferdinand says he has not yet set a date for his return to action for Manchester United. The England defender limped off in the victory over Bayer Leverkusen on November 13 with a thigh muscle injury.

n Cricket: England vs Sri Lanka 4th ODI from 10.58 am live on ESPN n Soccer: Spanish League highlights from 2.45pm on ESPN n Cricket: Sachin Tendulkar programming from 8.30pm on ESPN n Cricket: New Zealand vs India, 2nd Test, Day III live from 3.25 am (Saturday) on STAR Sports


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