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Mashud offers to step down

Dhaka: Bangladesh cricket captain Khaled Mashud has offered to resign following his team’s poor performance in the World Cup, a news report said Tuesday.

Mashud submitted his letter of resignation to Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) Sunday, leading daily Prothom Alo reported. Mashud, who has been in charge of the national team since November 2001, cited “personal and family reasons” for his decision to quit, a BCB official was quoted saying.

Mashud’s resignation came ahead of a tri-nation tournament in Dhaka featuring Bangladesh, India and South Africa. Bangladesh have not won any international match under the leadership of Mashud. Mashud and BCB officials were not immediately available for comment.

Goran to miss Spain tie

Zagreb: Goran Ivanisevic will miss Croatia's Davis Cup quarter-final against Spain at Valencia on Friday to Sunday because he needs more time to recover from a cut foot. However, Ivanisevic will travel to Valencia to support Ivan Ljubicic, Mario Ancic, Iovro Zovko and Mario Radic, who have been named by Croatia captain Nikola Pilic. The 2001 Wimbledon champion cut the sole of his left foot when he stepped on a shell at a beach in Miami. Ivanisevic had been sidelined for 10 months after shoulder surgery last may but the 31-year-old helped Croatia beat the US in the Davis Cup first round in February in Zagreb.

Bright spot on tourist map

Durban: The success of the one-and-a-half month long World Cup has clearly marked South Africa as a bright spot on the tourism map.

Pouring of thousands of cricket fans into the country during the mega event has projected the country as a major sports and tourist destination, said Cheryl Carolus, CEO of SA tourism.

Speaking at the end of the tournament, Carolus said she was especially pleased with the high volume of tourists from India, where SA tourism has now launched a drive to attract more visitors.

Gullit to coach Dutch U-19 team

The Hague: Ruud Gullit will return to soccer as coach of the Dutch under-19 squad and assistant coach of the national team if they make it to the European Championship in 2004, the national soccer association said Monday. Gullit was the Dutch captain when it won the European Championship in 1988. “If we go to Portugal, Ruud will be an excellent addition to our current technical staff,” coach Dick Advocaat said.

Double delight

Castries (St Lucia): Teams to represent England and Zimbabwe in the inaugural double wicket World Cup cricket tournament in April were announced by officials Monday. Andrew Flintoff and Adam Hollioake will represent England and Heath Streak and Grant Flower will turn out for Zimbabwe, said the St Lucia Tourist Board, organisers of the April 4-6 tournament.

Officials were continuing negotiations to finalise pairs to represent India, Sri Lanka and World Cup champions Australia. Other teams already announced in the tournament are Wasim Akram and Shahid Afridi of Pakistan, Carl Hooper and Chris Gayle of the West Indies and Chris Cairns and Jacob Oram of New Zealand.

Veteran passes away

Bangalore: S.V. Appaiah, one of India’s finest basketball players, passed away after a brief illness here Monday, family sources said. Appaiah, 89, donned the India colours in the inaugural Asian Games.

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