Lukewarm response to rotation policy idea
Five share lead
Ancheri ruled out
Lahore to host Indo-Pak Test
Police AC in semi-finals
Sarkar in final
Bangalore Races/ Anagram set for encore
Bangalore Races/ Allabreva posts upset victory
Calcutta Races/ Russian Czar, Mameena shine

Calcutta, June 23: 
Sourav Ganguly has initiated what should be a healthy debate on the merits of a rotation policy (specific to ODIs), but coach John Wright isn�t quite on the captain�s wavelength. Not on this issue, at least.

Actually, chief selector Chandu Borde isn�t too enthused either. Only Jawagal Srinath, who took the lead in �rotating� himself, may endorse Sourav�s point of view without a second thought.

Speaking to newsmen accompanying the Indian team in Zimbabwe the other day, Sourav felt rotation on the lines of Australia could help �lighten the players� burden.�

However, contacted by The Telegraph at the Crowne Plaza in Harare this evening, the pragmatic Wright�s response was: �Personally, I believe the best players must always be fielded. At the highest level, no game is a back-out game...�

Wright, a former New Zealand captain, added: �Of course, it�s a different matter if somebody has to be rested for very good reasons... Otherwise, at the moment, I don�t think we are in a position to have a rotation policy. To implement it, we must first have the base.�

A desi coach would have reacted diplomatically and Wright�s candid observation only reinforces the advantage of having a coach from overseas. He isn�t obliged to only say what will sound sweet.

For Australia, rotation obviously comes easy as even its second XI will give most teams a run for their money. That can�t be said of India --- it�s a point worth noting.

Talking exclusively from his Pune residence Borde, in fact, said pretty much the same thing.

�One way of viewing such a policy is that it will afford opportunities to many more players. At the same time, they must be good enough to earn the India cap,� the chief selector remarked.

Himself an ex-India captain, Borde added: �Yes, it�s important to look ahead and build a side, but that must only be done with quality players. You don�t rotate for the sake of rotating. At the top level, there is little scope to experiment.�

Asked whether he would discuss the issue when the selectors next meet Sourav (before the Sri Lanka tour), Borde replied: �Well, it can be brought up. As of now, after all, it�s just the captain�s personal opinion. In any case, no one individual can determine policy.�

A discussion at the selectors� next one-on-one with Sourav will also involve the Board as secretary Jaywant Lele, who convenes selection committee meetings, will surely be present.

The Board�s sanction will be necessary if rotation is to be introduced. And, it remains to be seen how the team�s sponsor (Sahara) will react to the possibility of the playing XI not always being the best XI.

If the three-match series in Australia is on and India make all three tri-series finals, Sourav and Co. will play a maximum of 22 ODIs between tomorrow and the year-end.

The break-up is: Five in Zimbabwe, seven in Sri Lanka, three in Australia and, then, seven again in South Africa. The five ODIs against England, at home, will be next January.

Incidentally, with no contract system in vogue --- though the players have called for one --- even all the big guns may not exactly favour rotation till contracts are in place.

More important, just how well will fans take to Sachin Tendulkar being �rested�, thanks to a change in policy? There cannot be a simple answer to this.


Jamshedpur, June 23: 
Pratik Sengupta, Rohan Vijay Shandilya, Abhishek Das, Sudipto Dasgupta and Akash Kusum were leading the field with five points each after the fifth round of The Telegraph Schools� Chess Championship today.

They were closely followed by five more on 4.5 points.

Top seed Pratik (SE Rly Mixed English Medium School) employed the Bishops Opening against Mayank Jayaswal who seemed to have little idea about it. Mayank lost a pawn in ten moves and the match after 46 moves.

Pratik got a walkover from Rashmi Kanchan in the fourth round.

Defending champion and second seed Rohan (Sri Ranganath HS, Munger) outplayed Mrityunjay Hansda in an English Opening. Mrityunjay made the mistake of exchanging knights which left him with a bad pawn structure and he lost in 25 moves.

Earlier, Rohan took just eight moves to outwit Kaushik Das in the fourth round.

No. 3 Abhishek (Bharat Sevashram) and Biswaranjan Sahu were involved in the longest game of the tournament. Abhishek won a pawn on the 13th move in a French Winawar game but had to toil till the 59th before winning.

Sudipto (DAV Bistupur) overcame Neelam Elish in an irregular King Pawn game. Sudipto pocketed two early pawns before winning in 30 moves.

Anirban Kundu (Loyola), the youngest participant of the meet last year, lost his fourth-round game to Mayank in 27 moves.


ROUND IV: Pratik Sengupta (4) w/o from Rashmi Kanchan (3); Kaushik Das (3) lost to Rohan Vijay Shandilya (4); Abhishek Das (4) bt Biswaranjan Sahu (3); Sudipto Dasgupta (4) bt Neelam Elish (3); Sheekha Unnikrishnan (3) lost to Akash Kusum (4); Arin Biswas (3.5) drew Sourabh Chatterjee (3.5); Ramesh Kumar (4) bt Sourabh Das (3); Nitesh Kejriwal (4) bt Mohammed Abid Hussain (3); Mayank Jayaswal (3) bt Anirban Kundu (3); Priya Ratnam (3.5) drew Vikash Kumar Tiwari (3.5).

ROUND V: Pratik Sengupta (5) bt Mayank Jayaswal (4); Rohan Vijay Shandilya (5) bt Mrityunjay Hansda (4); R. Sharda (4) lost to Abhishek Das (5); Kaushik Das (4) lost to Sudipto Dasgupta (5); Akash Kusum (5) bt Nitesh Kejriwal (4); Ankit Amartya (4.5) drew Ramesh Kumar (4.5); Priya Ratnam (3.5) lost to Arin Biswas (4.5); Vikash Kumar Tiwari (4.5) bt G. Samvedita (3.5); Sourabh Chatterjee (4.5) bt Bidhan Roy (3.5); Satish Kumar (4) bt Bishnu Priya Bala (3).


Calcutta, June 23: 
India captain Jo Paul Ancheri has been ruled out of the Merdeka Cup after sustaining an injury during yesterday�s 1-2 defeat against Malaysia under-23 in a group B match in Kuala Lumpur.

According to coach Sukhwinder Singh, I.M. Vijayan is likely to lead against Thailand tomorrow but he didn�t sound very energetic about India�s future in the tournament.

He attributed yesterday�s defeat to some careless mistakes. �Both goals resulted from defensive errors and we missed a few easy chances,� he said today.

Either Hardeep Sangha or Basudeb Mondal will replace Ancheri and the coach indicated the latter stands a better chance. He is also thinking of bringing in goalkeeper Sangram Mukherjee in place of Virender Singh.

The coach said he didn�t know much about Thailand � who have reached the main round of the Asian World Cup qualifiers � but maintained �our aim will be to do our best�.

Bosnia, Slovakia win

In today�s group A matches, Bosnia beat Bahrain 1-0, while Slovakia defeated Malaysia 2-0, adds Reuters from Kuala Lumpur.


Calcutta, June 23: 
The Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore will host India�s first Test (the Asian Test Championship game) in Pakistan in over 11 years.

Earlier reports had talked of Karachi�s National Stadium being the venue, but Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Lt General Tauqir Zia today told The Telegraph that Lahore will play host.

The PCB, incidentally, is headquartered at the Gaddafi which staged the 1996 World Cup final.

General Zia, who is currently in London, added that the Test had been advanced by a day (at India�s request) and would begin on September 12.

Meanwhile, the Championship will commence with the Pakistan-Bangladesh Test in Multan, from August 29. Earlier, the launch of the Championship�s second edition was slated for September 1.

The final of this Asian Cricket Council-organised Championship will be in the second half of February next.


Midnapore, June 23: 
Police AC came back from behind to defeat Kidderpore 3-1 in a IFA Shield cluster match at the Aurobindo Stadium here today.

In another match, Eveready Association defeated Eastern Coalfields 4-2, via the tie-breaker. The scheduled and extra time failed to yield any goals. Police AC will meet Eveready in the semi-final tomorrow.

Kidderpore�s Sachin Ram struck first in the 27th minute. Anup Kumar Bhabani equalised for Police AC from a free kick. Barun Kumar Jana helped Police AC take the lead in the 30th minute of the second half. Barun struck again seven minutes later.

Shyambabu Raut, Amit Das, Ashok Das and Sukumar Patra scored for Eveready in tie-breaker. Hrishikesh Ghosh and Laxman Ghosh were Coalfield�s scorers.


Calcutta, June 23: 
Soumyajit Sarkar and Abhishek Mukherjee reached the sub-junior boys� final in the CCD table tennis meet at Khudiram Anushilan Kendra today.

Soumyajit beat Soumya Nandy 21-15, 21-12, 18-21, 21-16. Abhishek overcame Anirban Roy Chowdhury 16-21, 25-23, 21-19, 19-21, 21-19.

Anushree Saha and Runa Roy reached the girls� singles final. Anushree edged Pallabi Kundu 19-21, 21-15, 21-14, 22-20, while Runa beat Moon Moon Basak 21-15, 21-23, 21-12, 15-21, 21-11.

Bowling title for Arora

P. Arora (168 points) edged past first runner-up V. Kapoor by 11 points to emerge champion in the Nicco Super Bowl annual meet.


Bangalore, June 23: 
The Imtiaz Sait- trainee Anagram, a runaway winner in smart timing recently over 1,800m, looks set for an encore when she takes on six opponents for the 1,800 Justice Cup, tomorrow. Cristopher Alford partners the Steinbeck-Ideas And Trends filly.


2 pm: Claudius 1. Mack The Knife 2. Elegant Monarch 3.
2.30 pm: Daiimio 1. Treat 2. Predominate.
3 pm: Smart Challenger 1. Amazon Gold 2. Anonyme 3.
3.30 pm: Gullane 1. Sher Khan 2. Celestial Gold 3.
4 pm: Anagram 1. Aerobee 2. Appeaser 3.
4.30 pm: Big And Blonde 1. Flaming Tower 2. Carnival Craze 3.
5 pm: Mohican Chief 1. Anaheim 2. Star Pride 3.
5.30 pm: Stamford 1. Shakhtar 2. Persian Goddess 3.
Day�s Best: Anagram
Double: Big And Blonde & Mohican Chief

Bangalore, June 23: 
In lead for most of the 1,200m trip, jockey Shobhan Babu partnered the C. Kuts-trainee Allabreva to an upset victory in the Civil Service Cup in Bangalore on Saturday.


(With inter-state dividends)
1. Tippu Sultan Cup, Div-II 1,400m: (2-1-7) Midnight Star (Guruprasad) 1; If Looks Could Kill 2; Vikramaditya 3. Won by: Nk; 1-3/4; (1-30.2). Tote: Win Rs 199; Place: 44; 13; 28; Quinella: 267; Tanala: 8,689. Fav: Amazing View (3).
2. Udhagamandalam Plate 1,400m: (8-9-10) Beautiful Bird (Warren) 1; Goebbels 2; Abhimanyu 3. Won by: 1-1/4; SH; (1-31.2). Tote: Win Rs 343; Place: 57; 25; 38; Quinella: 1,061; Tanala: 24,944. Fav: Dusty Street (5).
3. Nawab Sultan Ali Khan Memorial Plate 1,800m: (7-2-5) Spirited Effort (Prakash) 1; Astor Place 2; Appleby 3. Won by: 1-1/4; 2-1/2; (1-53.3). Tote: Win Rs 32; Place: 13; 12; 20; Quinella: 22; Tanala: 202. Fav: Astor Place (2).
4. Civil Service Cup 1,200m: (11-6-10) Allabreva (Shobhan) 1; Sensational News 2; Alylady 3. Won by: 2-1/4; 2; (1-14). Tote: Win Rs 822; Place: 184; 18; 19; Quinella: 1,388; Tanala: 25,618. Fav: Alylady (10).
5. Sweet Memories Plate 1,800m: (1-2-7) Allocate (M. Narredu) 1; Soul of Gold 2; Free World 3. Won by: 1-1/4; 3-1/4; (1-56.3). Tote: Win Rs 21; Place: 10; 20; 68; Quinella: 88; Tanala: 2,327. Fav: Allocate (1).
6. Tippu Sultan Cup, Div-I 1,400m: (3-1-10) Taipan (Gallagher) 1; Campanero 2; Dover 3. Won by: Nk; 3/4; (1-28.9). Tote: Win Rs 23; Place: 13; 17; 16; Quinella: 45; Tanala: 182. Fav: Taipan (3). (Note: The winner survived an objection).
7. Ramkirpal Plate 1,200m: (1-10-2) Belief (Shukla) 1; Royal Caribbean 2; Eyes of Truth 3. Won by: 3/4; 1-1/4; (1-16.5). Tote: Win Rs 65; Place: 20; 22; 22; Quinella: 132; Tanala: 1,685. Fav: Red Rosie (4).
Jackpot: Rs 82,174; (C) Rs 3,735.
Treble: (i) Rs 48,450 (Carried over to Sunday); (ii) Rs 219.

Calcutta, June 23: 
Russian Czar and Mameena were impressive in today�s workouts:

Sand track

800m: Prince Obolensky (K. Kumar) in 59s; (400m) 26s. Easy. Added Asset (Tamang) 58s; (400m) 26s. Fit. Mameena (K. Kumar) in 56s; (400m) 24s. Handy. On The Bit (Rutherford) in 1-2s; (400m) 25s. Fit. Double Dancer (Rb) in 1-3s; (400m) 30s. Ispahan (K. Kumar) in 59s; (400m) 27s. Easy.
400m: Grecian Prince (Tamang) in 28s. Software (Shanker) in 30s. Reactor (Sh-anker) in 30s. Pure Passion (Rutherford) 25s. Fit. Starina (Rutherford) in 25s. Fit. Royal Ruler (Rb) in 30s. Russian Czar (Rutherford) in 23s. Good. Just Kidding (Rutherford) in 28s. Armila (Engineer) in 30s. Floral Path (G. Singh) in 28s.

Noted on Friday, outer sand track

800m: Actress (Surender) in 1-1s; (400m) 27s. Good. Alsheim (Rb) and Anolini (Surender) in 1-0s; (400m) 26s. Former better. Alegria (A. P. Singh) in 1-1s; (400m) 27s. Easy. Andrada (Surender) in 1-2s; (400m) 29s. Easy.

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