Bruised Indians hit back to salvage a draw
Mike Denness justifies, experts condemn
Code of Conduct at centre of attention
Easy for seeds

Port Elizabeth, Nov. 20: 
INDIA 201, 206/3

It was a day for India to prove a point. To let the world know there was more to its cricket than unwarranted disciplining by a crazy Match Referee. At home, the Board didn.t disappoint. At St George�s Park, Sourav Ganguly�s team didn.t either.

Actually, it was quite a remarkable day for Indian cricket.

Despite a helping hand from Mike Denness, then, South Africa couldn.t clinch the three-Test series here itself. India did exceptionally to force a confidence-restoring draw and, so, will take to Centurion with the chance of squaring the series. In the end, it wasn.t quite the great escape as India did bat with a degree of comfort.

Of course, with the Board going for the Match Referee�s jugular, that the third and final Test may not come off remains a possibility. As of now, it�s on schedule (from Friday) and the Indians, who left for Johannesburg tonight, will train at Centurion tomorrow.

When stumps were called for the final time this evening, again (10.4 overs) prematurely, India had moved to a commendable 206 for three. Sachin Tendulkar, who must live with the ball-tampering stigma, was unbeaten on 22 to Sourav�s four. Herschelle Gibbs, with 196 in the first innings, was adjudged Man of the Match. .

Yes, we are disappointed...We had to make things happen (today), but failed. It�s not that our guys didn.t try. Indeed, they gave 120 per cent, but the breakthroughs didn.t materialise,. remarked Shaun Pollock, the South African captain.

Speaking exclusively, Gibbs shared his captain�s disappointment: .It does take some of the sheen away from my effort... But, what can you or I do about the weather?.

South Africa�s best chance was when they had India at 119 for eight in the first innings, but V.V�s. Laxman and Anil Kumble ensured the follow-on was avoided. Then, yesterday, much of Day IV was lost to the elements. Barring the early closure, only 75 minutes of play was lost today.

Sourav, who told The Telegraph his feelings were .mixed., remarked: .I wouldn.t say I.m happy... Happiness comes from victory. But, yes, we played good cricket the entire day..

While the captain declined to talk about the Denness-verdicts, coach John Wright did say the episode .probably made the boys more focussed.. Answering a different question, he accepted it had been a .mistake. not fielding three quicks.

Sourav had much praise for makeshift opener Deep Dasgupta, who batted for over five-and-half hours to compile a character-oozing 63 (335 minutes, 281 balls, 7x4). It�s a career-best effort for Deep, who earned his maiden cap in Bloemfontein.

That Deep isn.t even a regular opener in domestic cricket, back home,makes his effort that much more creditable.More to the point, he has now given the thinktank and selectors an option of balancing the XI differently. The gains, therefore, promise to be long term.

Ironically, despite coming off, Deep will probably return to the middle-order as the ban on Virender Sehwag means rookie opener Connor Williams will have to be fielded, in the decider.

Though the sun was at its brightest till just before tea, when rain forced that 75-minute interruption, the need of the day was application of the professional kind. Deep, who had no reservations about opening at a time when vicecaptain Rahul Dravid and Laxman said .no., proved he is worthy of being counted among the men.

Deep did learn much from Dravid, who anchored one end to register 87 (312 minutes, 243 deliveries, 12x4) . his first score of substance in the series. Dravid had a paltry 15 in the three previous innings.

Unfortunately, both Dravid and Deep were involved in soft dismissals.And,both exited to the second new ball (164 for one). Incidentally, they added a St George�s Park record of 171 for the second wicket.

Dravid was the first to go, trying to cut Mornantau Hayward away from the body.Then, Deep offered a regulation catch to Jacques Kallis, again off local hero Hayward.

By then, the pressure had eased completely, but it was still important for Sachin and Sourav to end on a strong note. They did. By any reckoning, a fourth-innings score of 200-plus for three, on a wicket with dual bounce, is good if not excellent. And, despite being highly rated, the South African attack rests almost entirely on Pollock.

SA retain squad

Meanwhile, the South African selectors have retained the XII for Centurion. Daryll Cullinan hasn.t been recalled,but both chief selector Rushdi Magiet and Graeme Pollock confirmed he is being considered for the up-coming trip to Australia.

The selectors meet on Thursday, but the squad won.t be announced should anybody in the third Test XI not be in the tour party. Clearly, the selectors in these parts are very sensitive.


Port Elizabeth, Nov. 20: 
Match Referee Mike Denness obviously believes in saying little. So, this morning, he just offered a twopage Media release. The following, then, are excerpts (in the order of the disciplinary hearings):

1. SACHIN TENDULKAR: Summoned for alleged interference with the match ball, thus changing its condition.

Match Referee�s decision: By acting on the match ball,Mr Tendulkar brought the game into disrepute (ICC Players and Team Officials Code No. 2) and has been fined 75 per cent of his match fee, plus a one-Test ban. The ban will be suspended till the last day of December 2001.

2. VIRENDER SEHWAG: Summoned for alleged breach of ICC Players and Team Officials Code Nos. 3 & 4: Showing dissent at the umpire�s decision and attempting to intimidate the umpire by charging.

Match Referee�s decision: Mr Sehwag has been fined 75 per cent of his match fee, plus a one-Test match ban with immediate effect.

3 SEHWAG,HARBHAJAN SINGH, DEEP DASGUPTA and SHIV SUNDAR DAS: Summoned for alleged breach of ICC Players and Team Officials Code Nos.3 & 4: Showing dissent at the umpire�s decision and attempting to intimidate the umpire by charging.

Match Referee�s decision: Mr Singh, Mr Das and Mr Dasgupta have all been fined 75 per cent of their match fee, plus a one-Test match ban. The ban will be suspended till the last day of January 2002.

3.1 SEHWAG: Summoned for alleged breach of ICC Players and Team Officials Code No.5: Use of crude or abusive language.

Match Referee�s decision: Refer to No. 2.

4. SOURAV GANGULY: Summoned for alleged breach of ICC Players and Team Officials Code Nos.1 & 2: Spirit of the game, including conduct of onfield players, and bringing the game into disrepute.

Match Referee�s decision: Mr Ganguly, so long as he remains captain of India, a one-Test match and two-ODI matches ban. The ban will be suspended till the last day of January 2002.


Port Elizabeth, Nov. 20: 
With Match Referee Mike Denness creating history by disciplining more than half the Indian team, at one go, the International Cricket Council�s (ICC�s) Code of Conduct has come into focus.

The Indians, after all, have been held guilty of violating the Code,which has been in operation from November 1991. Of course, the Code . a copy of which is with The Telegraph . didn.t then have so many provisions.

The Code, specific to players and team officials (as it reads today), is:

1. The captains are responsible at all times for ensuring that play is conducted within the spirit of the game as well as within the Laws of Cricket.

2. Players and/or Team Officials shall at no time engage in conduct unbecoming to their status,which could bring them or the game of cricket into disrepute.

3. Players and/or Team Officials must at all times accept the umpire�s decision and not show dissent at the umpire�s decision.

4. Players and/or Team Officials shall not verbally abuse, assault, intimidate or attempt to assault or intimidate any umpire, spectator, Referee, Player or Team Official. Nor shall any Player and/or Team Official engage in any conduct towards or speak to any other Player, umpire, spectator, Referee or Team Official in a manner which offends, insults, humiliates, intimidates, threatens, disparages or vilifies the other person on the basis of that other person�s race, religion, colour, descent or national or ethnic origin.

5. Players and/or Team Officials shall not use crude or abusive language nor make offensive gestures.

6. Players and/or Team Officials shall not disclose or publicly comment upon any alleged or actual breach of this Code, whether by themselves or any other person to whom the Code applies, or upon any hearing, report or decision arising from such an alleged or proven breach.

7. Players and/or Team Officials shall not at any time breach any ICC Regulation which may be in force from time to time.

8. Players and/or Team Officials shall not make any public pronouncement or media comment which is detrimental: (a) to the game of cricket in general; (b) to a particular tour (whether or not they are personally involved with the tour); (c) to relations between the home Boards of competing teams.

9. Players and/or Team Officials shall not bet on matches nor otherwise engage in conduct referred to in Appendix A of the ICC Code of Conduct Commission Terms of Reference.

10. Players shall be required to report to the Captain and Team Manager any approach made to them by a bookmaker in conduct referred to in Appendix A of the ICC Code of Conduct Terms of Reference.

11. Players and/or Team Officials shall not use or in any way be concerned in the use or distribution of illegal drugs.


Calcutta, Nov. 20: 
Seeded players hardly had to break a sweat in cruising into the quarter finals of the Tata Futures (under-18) meet�s city leg at DKS courts today. Top seed Sunil Sipayea�s 6-1, 6-0 thrashing of Rijit Chatterjee typified the absolute lack of challenge in other matches.


Boys� U-18, Day II action � Sunil Sipayea bt Rijit Chatterjee 6-1, 6-0; Manoj Kumar Sewa bt Sabyasachi Bose 6-2 (conceded); Chandra Sekhar Mohanty bt Samrat Ghosh 6-3, 6-2; Dhrub Kumar bt Robin Das 6-0, 6-2; Anshuman Dutta bt Md. Aaib 6-1, 6-0; Harshit Sharma bt Indradeep Mitra 6-1, 3-0 (conceded); Arka Mondal bt Bapi Halder 6-0, 6-2; Vinod Kumar Sewa bt Farid Alam 6-1, 6-1.

Bahel third

The Bengal Motor Sports Club erred in naming the third-placed racer at the city leg of the JK Tyre National Go-Karting championship.A press release issued yesterday said it was Neil M. Bahel, and not Mazdayar Vatcha who had finished third . This, said the release, was .due to technical fault/error in the computers..    

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