India remains averse to panel
Vasco get past Tollygunge
Mohun Bagan eye win vs ITI
Aleksei the man to beat this year
EB notch up 7-2 victory
Wari, Kalighat up
Bangalore Racing/ Regal Society looks improved
Calcutta Racing/ Only 3 for Saturday�s St Leger

Calcutta, March 14: 
Barring a dramatic shift in equations, India is �well-placed� in the numbers game within the ICC. However, there are no plans to �misuse� this advantage.

Of course, while India will not relent on the Referees� Commission, during the two-day Executive Board meeting in Cape Town, its stand on the Centurion �Test� may not be as rigid.

The deliberations begin tomorrow at 9.00 am (local time) and, besides all ten Test-playing nations, three Associate Members have representation on the Board.

According to The Telegraph�s sources, should the Board agree to reconstitute the three-member Commission, India could respond by being �flexible� on Centurion.

A bit of �give�, after all, must be there.

Specifically, BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya may not insist the ICC recognise that match (played last November) as official. As South Africa won big � by an innings and 73 runs � it won�t be a bad idea if the status remains unofficial.

The sentiment, clearly, would have been very different had the result been in India�s favour.

The ICC withdrew Test-recognition once South Africa, bowing to India�s demand, replaced controversial Match Referee Mike Denness with Denis Lindsay and went ahead with the match.

This problem-without-precedent arose after Denness� extraordinary act of disciplining six Indian players � it included banning Virender Sehwag for one Test � in Port Elizabeth.

To return to the Referees� Commission, a fall-out of Denness being an absolute menace in Port Elizabeth, India will first press for it to be constituted afresh.

Indeed, India could well back a South Africa-authored proposal calling for the heads of three Test-playing nations � Australia (Bob Merriman), the West Indies (Wesley Hall) and Zimbabwe (Peter Chingoka) � to sit on the Commission.

Alternatively, India may suggest that nominees of all ten Test-playing nations have a seat on the Commission.

Yet another option, for India, is to get two of the three Commission members replaced. This alone will be a victory.

Thus far, the ICC and its chief (Malcolm Gray) have been averse to any rethink. Only, the Commission�s functioning has been put on hold.

Incidentally, the Commission members have been hand-picked by Gray, who ignored the likes of Richie Benaud, Imran Khan and Ian Chappell � all of whom were in the list suggested by Dalmiya.

Meanwhile, while Gray has sought a meeting with (predecessor) Dalmiya, ahead of the formal deliberations of the Board, it�s unclear whether that will actually come about.

The top reason for this uncertainty being the BCCI chief�s late arrival in Cape Town this evening, thanks to a delay in Johannesburg.

Having already lost time, Dalmiya�s priority will be to call on India�s allies: Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa, Zimbabwe and the West Indies.

The �flock� must remain together�


Calcutta, March 14: 
Vasco took their desired three points off today�s Tata National Football League match versus Tollygunge Agragami at the Salt Lake Stadium and climbed right back on top of the league table with 31 points. It was a quiet bit of soccer, pretty unattractive in the main, and giant-killers Tollygunge were finally stumped by their own defence.

Brazilian Rui Wanderley put the visitors ahead in first half injury time with a fine side volley and Marcos Pereira made it 2-0 five minutes into the second half. Tollygunge reduced the margin through Ashim Biswas, 16 minutes later.

There wasn�t enough in the match to write home about, except how the Goan team managed the show with cool heads. They kept to their passing game and used the long balls to advantage. And while they kept Tollygunge�s Akim Abolanle under a strict zonal mark, they were able to get Wanderley out of marking zone through the clever use of Marcos (who overlapped) and Abhay Kumar.

Helping the Vasco effort was some poor defending by Tollygunge, the exception being goalkeeper Sandip Nandy who, except for one occasion when he took the ball up to the half line, had a fine day with a couple of good saves.

At the other end of Tollygunge, coach Aloke Mukherjee�s plan of using Adeola Adeyeri and Ashim Biswas, both in the free as Akim was being watched, did not really pay. More flank play could have yielded better results, one feels.

The first half was petering off barren after a Jose Luciano header off an Agnello Gomez pass was collected by �keeper Nandy, but the two extra minutes (injury time) did the trick for the Goans. Caetano Pinho�s tip to the goalmouth was connected on the run by Wanderley, as he balanced well to effect a fine side volley that found the netting.

Switching ends, Abhay tapped onto Pereira, exposing the porosity of the Tollygunge defence. He dribbled past three, then goalkeeper Nandy too, before calmly slotting home a grounder from close.

Sasthi Duley was a shadow of himself today. Neither did he manage any special effort for his team, nor did he show any individual sheen. The reducer came off a counter-attack when Mehtab centred the goalmouth. Ashim was there and so was the full complement of the Vasco defence. As Ashim controlled and balanced, and took the left-footed volley, the defence failed to intercept.

The rest of the match was pedestrian, though Vasco goalkeeper Rogerio Ramos did have to do a good collecting act in the 78th minute of a Sandip Das shot.


VASCO: Rogerio Ramos, Sanjay Parte, Seby Dias, Agnelo Colaco, V.B. Santosh, Jose Luciano, Marcos Pereira, Abhay Kumar, Caetanho Pinho (Satish Minz, 63), Rui Wanderley, Agnello Gomes (Bhola Dey, 85).

TOLLYGUNGE AGRAGAMI: Sadip Nandy, Reaz-ul Mustafa, Subhashis Roy Chowdhury, Deb Kumar Sasmal, Amitava Chanda (Biswanath Mondal, 56), Sasthi Duley, Mehtab Hussain, Sandip Das, Adeola Adeyeri (Khemtang Paite, 56; Prahlad Rawat, 81), Ashim Biswas, Akim Abolanle.

Referee: Rizwan-ul-Haq (Delhi).


Calcutta, March 14: 
Mohun Bagan need a win against ITI (Bangalore) at the Salt Lake Stadium tomorrow to rejoin Vasco Sports Club at the top of the Tata National Football League.

Vasco beat Tollygunge Agragami 2-1 today to move to 31 points. The city giants share the second spot with Salgaocar on 28 with a match to spare. ITI are on 25 from 15 outings.

Mohun Bagan have everything to play for, but have ten of their players on a yellow card each. Coach Subrata Bhattacharya, who will have to play his cards carefully, is expected to field the same team that beat East Bengal Monday. That means eight of the booked players will play tomorrow � Debjit Ghosh, Jose Ramirez Barreto, Amauri da Silva, Basudeb Mondal, Rajat Ghosh Dastidar, Dulal Biswas, Lolendra Singh, Abdul Saliu.

With a number of away matches coming up, the onus will be on the group of eight to avoid a second booking.

ITI depend heavily on their three Nigerians � Mike Okoro, George Ekeh and Mohammad Salisu. In their last outing, the trio tore apart the Tollygunge Agragami defence to set up a 3-2 win.

In fact, coach Krishnaji Rao ranks Okoro, who has played in the Polish first division, perhaps just a step behind the brilliant Barreto. Rao harbours hopes of winning the title and his team will take the field tomorrow with just the same aspirations. �There isn�t much difference between the teams at this stage and we can still win from here,� Rao said.

There was some concern over the fitness of stopper John Ogou. The coach, though, confirmed today that Ogou will play.

ITI�s main strength is their flexibility and a reliable goalkeeper in L. Balaji.

Balaji�s prowess will surely be put to test by the magic of Barreto. The goal-scoring machine has been a treat for all football followers in the city. Even against arch-rivals East Bengal, it was Barreto who scored the all-important goal.

Barreto is on every coach�s threat list and it�s not otherwise for the ITI coach either. �Mohun Bagan�s defence may not be that good but their forward with Barreto marshalling it is very threatening.�

Though ITI will go all out for a win tomorrow, a point from a match against Mohun Bagan in Calcutta will actually be a decent result for the Bangalore club.


Calcutta, March 14: 
The 13th Goodricke International Open chess tournament will see a slightly low-key field, with Belarus� Aleksandrov Aleksei (2645) being the highest ranked.

The meet, to be held at Gorky Sadan from March 17 to 27, a month behind schedule, has 18 Grandmasters including two Indians�Krishnan Sasikiran (sixth at 2569) and Dibyendu Barua (16th at 2515). The overall field is of 51 from 16 countries.

An official of the Alekhine Chess Club, organisers, said the delay was due to a rather cramped international calendar. This year the meet offers a total prize purse of $ 10,500. Motilev Aleksander of Russia(2639) is No. 2, while thelikes of Maximum Sorokin (2551). Alexander Fominyh (2536) will again be there.

The cynosure of all eyes will be Koneru Humpy, the girl from Andhra Pradesh. Currently the third-ranked woman in the world, Humpy will definitely be trying to get her elusive final GM norm. That would make her the only Indian with both men�s and women�s GM titles.

Among other Indians in fray are IMs Tejas Bakre, Sandipan Chanda, P. Konguvel and WIMs Nisha Mohota and Swati Ghate. Bangladesh will be represented by IM Abdulla-al-Rakib and Fide Master Hossain Enamul while Zambia will be the sole representative of Africa.


Calcutta March 14: 
East Bengal today whipped BSF, South Bengal, 7-2 in their BHA League first division group A match. In another match of the group, CESC beat BSF North Bengal 4-0.

R. Adhikari put East Bengal ahead in the 19th minute off a penalty stroke, before S. Das slotted two more home, in the 22nd and 24th. Chittaranjan Singh made it 4-0 in the 41st and added another in the 63rd, after A. Khan (55th) and A. Singh (58th) had scored for East Bengal. S. Lakra (59th) and R. Aind (69th) scored for BSF, South Bengal.

The scorers for CESC were Christopher Thomas, Sunil Soren, Albert Tete and Lalit Singh.

In group B, Muslim Institute beat Chotonagpur Union 3-0, Anand Minz (2) and Vikram Minz scoring. Calcutta Rangers beat Police AC 2-1, L. Bel and C. Amos scoring for the winners and S. Lodh for Police.

Open tennis meet

Saurav Panja and Reedhina Parekh have been top-seeded among the men and women, respectively, for the Central Excise Open tennis tournament to be held at the Central Excise and High Court tennis complex from Monday to March 24.

It was announced at a press meet this afternoon that Vinod Kumar Sewa and Ragini Vimal will be the second seeds in the above two categories in the 60-strong field. The meet offers a total purse of Rs 30,000, with the winner and runner-up in each event getting Rs 5,00 and Rs 3,000, respectively.


Calcutta, March 14: 
Kalighat and Wari entered the J.C. Mukherjee Trophy semis with 30-run and three-wicket wins over Tapan Memorial and Shyambazar, respectively. Kalighat will take on Mohun Bagan while Wari meet East Bengal.

Wari, replying to Shyambazar�s 332, ticked off 333 for seven in 83.2 overs, Aurijit Basu (139 with 17 fours and a sixer) being the star of the show.

Tapan Memorial were replying to Kalighat�s 250, but packed up 30 runs short in 66.5 overs, Ranabir Nath scoring 62.


Shyambazar 332. Wari AC 333/7 in 83.2 ovs (Aurijit Basu 139, Pulak das 80; Anirban Chatterjee 3/99). Wari won by 3 wkts.

Kalighat 250. Tapan Memorial 220 in 66.5 ovs (Ranabir Nath 62, Ajoy Das 34; Sanjeev Sanyal 5/57, Sudip Chanda 4/33). Kalighat won by 30 runs.

Jaipuria champions

Jaipuria College emerged champions in the inter-college cricket meet, beating Jadavpur University by six wickets.

Brief scores: Jadavpur 179 (Gaurav Sharma 3/27, Kanchan Maity 3/63). SA Jaipuria 183/4 (Anustup Mazumdar 46, Subhomoy Das 98 n.o.).


Bangalore, March 14: 
The vastly improved Ganapathy�s ward Regal Society is fancied to win the 1,600m Kempegowda Cup tomorrow here. B. Prakash partners the Razeen-Regal Grace son.


2.30 pm: Noble Executive 1. Dance Royale 2. Flowington 3.

3 pm: Mantle of Peace 1. Great Brother 2. Sprite 3.

3.30 pm: Proflare 1. Pettalumma 2. Hello Baby 3.

4 pm: Regal Society 1. Ampersand 2. Strides of Fire 3.

4.30 pm: Crystal Goblet 1. Mehvish 2. Silver Touch 3.

5 pm: Three Coins 1. I Am Beautiful 2. Startrix 3.

5.30 pm: Dover 1. Shara 2. Private Emotions 3.

Day�s Best: Noble Executive

Double: Proflare & Regal Society.

Thursday�s Mumbai results

(With inter-state dividends)

1. Manino Plate 1,800m: (3-7-2) Chirayu (Sunil) 1; Beautiful Stranger 2; Tall Boy 3. Not run: Astaire (1) & Ris-que (4). Won by: 1-3/4; SH; (2-1) Tote: Win Rs 19; Place: 11; 33; Quin-ella: 65; Tanala: 150. Fav: Chirayu (3).

2. Kailashpat Singhania Trophy 1,200m: (4-1-3) Dazzling gold (MCCullagh) 1; Zeisha 2; Natural Grace 3. Won by: 4-1/2; 1-3/4; (1-12.5). Tote: Win Rs 14; Place: 12; 21; Quinella: 30; Tanala: 52. Fav: Dazzling Gold (4).

3. Noor-e-Shiraz Trophy 1,100m: (6-1-3) Premier Classe (Shroff) 1; Heart of Danger 2; Pick of The Pack 3. Not run: Forest Angel (5). Won by: 6; 3-3/4; (1-6.7). Tote: Win Rs 11; Place: 10; 19; Quinella: 15; Tanala: 59. Fav: Premier Classe (6).

4. Delhi Race Club Trophy 1,000m: (1-5-4) Rambus (McCullagh) 1; Merin-gue 2; Columbus 3. Won by: 3; 1; (59. 1). Tote: Win Rs 13; Place: 12; 16; Qui-nella: 20; Tanala: 42. Fav: Rambus (1).

5. Mangal Plate 1,000m: (3-2-1) Fantasy Star (Bhagwan) 1; Original 2; Chamonix 3. Won by: 3/4; 1; (1-0.4). Tote: Win Rs 67; Place: 16; 11; 14; Quinella: 41; Tanala: 223. Fav: Original (2).

6. Waynak Plate 1,400m: (5-9-1) Running Regal (J. Chinoy) 1; Mambo King 2; Cool Water 3. Won by: Nk; 1-1/4; (1-27). Tote: Win Rs 33; Place: 16; 29; 19; Quinella: 157; Tanala: 748. Fav: Running Regal (5).

7. Night Crown Plate 1,000m: (10-3-12) Skip out Front (Aadesh K.) 1; Gol-den Dynasty 2; Multi Millionaire 3. Won by: 1-1/4; SH; (1-1.1). Tote: Win Rs 290; Place: 99; 25; 64; Quinella: 879; Tanala: 41,526. Fav: Golden Dynasty (3).

8. Zyna�s Glory Plate 1,400m: (2-9-8) Divine Protocol (Shroff) 1; Quick Decision 2; Prabhuti 3. Won by: 2-1/4; 1-3/4; (1-25.8). Tote: Win Rs 23; Place: 14; 26; 36; Quinella: 68; Tanala: 1,144. Fav: Divine Protocol (2).

Jackpot: Rs 11,589; (C) Rs 2,251.

Treble: (i) 39; (ii) 90; (iii) 2,528.


Calcutta, March 14: 
There are only three horses in the field for the last and the longest local classic, the Calcutta St Leger, on Saturday. First race starts at 1.10 pm.


1. Cradle of the Deep Handicap 1,200m (Cl IV, Rt. 22-50) 1.10 pm: Red Trident 60; Tequila Shot 55.5; Alborada 55; Beau Bruno 54.5; Freedom Warrior 53.5; Asprey 51.5.

2. Long Tom Handicap 1,100m (Cl IV, Rt. 22-50) 1.40 pm: Auctioneer 60; Secret Adversary 60; Schumacher 59; Simply Monarch 58.5; Storm Centre 56.5; Val Rouge 54; Glass Slipper 52.

3. Goldgainer Cup 1,100m (Cl V, Rt. 00-28) 2.25 pm: Lady Shirley 60; Calcuttan 59.5; Flying Power 59; Iron Warrior 59; Castle Moon 58.5; Heaven�s Blessing 57.5; Artisia 56; Jeypore 50.5.

4. Air Force Cup 1,400m (Cl II, Rt. 66-94) 2.55 pm: Gold Buck 60; Ispahan 59.5; Soviet Port 59; Silver Toy 57.5; Sadaf 57; Winning Glory 57; Raaz 54.

5. Calcutta St Leger 2,800m (Terms, 4-y-o only) 3.25 pm: Alamito 56; Calculate 56; Touch of Silver 54.5.

6. Pennant Handicap 1,200m (Cl III, Rt. 44-72) 3.55 pm: Pearl Dragon 60; Revolution 60; Gallant Romeo 57.5; On The Bit 56; Andrada 55.5; Flying Scot 52; Leading Conquest 49.

7. Aspirant Handicap 1,200m (Cl V, 3-y-o only, Rt. 00-28) 4.30 pm: Assailer 60; Anacott 59.5; Arian 58.5; Artiness 58; Cupola 58; Dancing Rhythm 58; River Melody 58; Sweet Paintedlady 58; Star of Ring 57.5; Gryffindor 55; Software Classic 55; Mahika�s Pet 54.5.

Jackpot: 3; 4; 5; 6 & 7.

Treble: (i) 2; 3 & 4; (ii) 5; 6 & 7.

Today�s track trials, outer sand

800m: Anacott (C. Alford) and Artiness (Domingo) in 55s; (400m) 27s. Level. Raaz (Rb) in 54s; (400m) 27s. Moved well. Calcuttan (Shanker) and Assailer (C. Alford) in 54s; (400m) 27s. Level. Accrete (Shanker) in 56s; (400m) 29s.

600m: Midnight Escape (C. Alford) and Artisia (Domingo) in 47s; (400m) 31s . Former 6 ls better, latter was easy. Discomatic (A. P. Singh) and Argolis (Asghar) in 45s; (400m) 30s. Level.

Sand track

800m: Amusing (B. Gurang) in 58s; (400m) 30.

600m: Winning Glory (Gowli) in 40s; (400m) 26s. Fit. Actuate (Shanker) in 37s; (400m) 25s. Fit.


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