Island Cricket

Monday, December 31, 2007

[Video] Romesh Kaluwitharana 77 Vs Australia | World Series Cup 1995/96

A couple of months prior to the 1996 Wills World Cup, Sri Lanka found themselves on a tough tour to Australia. Heavy losses in the test series and the infamous boxing day test match where Darrell Hair no balled Murali for throwing had the entire team in very low spirits.

It was then that Ranatunga and Whatmore conjured up the attacking opening combination of Jayasuriya and Kaluwitharana. The birth of a strategy that was to win Sri Lanka it's 1st World Cup.

Click here to see Kaluwitharana's first knock as opening batsman for Sri Lanka.

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[Video] Classic Catches | Hashan Tillekaratne | 1995/96

From Game 9 of the 1995/96 World Series Cup ODI match between Australia & Sri Lanka. Played at the MCG, Australia.

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[Video] Manjula Munasinghe 3/30 Vs Australia 1995-96 WSC

By Hilal

Player profile

"Munasinghe was given a brief run in the one-day side and, despite not earning further representative honours, he did not let the team down. Munasinghe had the ability to bowl a consistent line and length and thus maintained an impressive economy rate in his limited matches.

A constant figure in representative sides, he played numerous matches against touring sides before being selected for the 1995-96 tour of Australia.

His best performance came at the MCG when he ran through the Australian top order taking 3 for 30, in the process setting up victory for Sri Lanka. Following the conclusion of the World Series he was not selected for the 1996 World Cup and drifted from the international scene." - Cricinfo.
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Sangakkara benefits from Ponting’s and Kallis’ failures to regain top slot

Last Updated after: Australia v India Test, 26 December, 2007
South Africa v West Indies Test, 26 December, 2007
New Zealand v Bangladesh ODI, 31 December, 2007

Daily Times LAHORE: Sri Lanka’s Kumar Sangakkara has returned to the top of the ICC player rankings for Test batsmen for the second time in three weeks after Australia’s Ricky Ponting and South Africa’s Jacques Kallis suffered rare batting failures in the Melbourne and Port Elizabeth Tests respectively.

Ponting had entered the Boxing Day Test leading second-placed Kallis by one ratings point and third-placed Sangakkara by three. But his contribution of four and three in his team’s 337-run victory over India meant he has conceded 19 ratings points and has fallen behind the two on 917 points.
Official ICC rankings

Kallis also squandered an opportunity to surge to the top when he was dismissed for a duck in the first innings of his team’s 128-run defeat to the West Indies. Despite managing 85 in his second dig, it was not enough to avoid losing 12 ratings points, illustrating just what it takes to stay at the top these days. Kallis did just enough for him to hang on to his second place on 923 points.

Sangakkara, on 933 points, had earlier knocked Ponting off the top spot after his performance of 92 and 152 in the first Test against England in Kandy earlier this month. The 30-year-old from Matale then shared the top slot with the Australia captain after the second Test in Colombo in which he scored one run in the first innings and didn’t get an opportunity to make amends in the second, a trend that was repeated in the third Test at Galle where he scored 46 and consequently dropped to third place behind Ponting and Kallis. Sangakkara’s return to the top now means that Sri Lanka again boasts a player at the top of both the batsman and bowler categories in the ICC player rankings as world record-breaking spinner Muttiah Muralidaran tops the bowling list.

Elsewhere, there was good news for Ponting’s team-mate Mike Hussey who edged closer to becoming the 24th batsman in history to reach the 900-mark. Hussey, who began in fifth position at 874 ratings points, climbed one position to fourth after earning eight points from the Melbourne Test which put him on a career-best 882 points. Matthew Hayden was also rewarded for his effort of 124 and 47 when he jumped two places to leapfrog Sri Lanka’s Mahela Jaywardena and England’s Kevin Pietersen in sixth position. While Michael Clarke cemented his place in 11th spot following knocks of 20 and 73, Phil Jaques and Andrew Symonds made movements in the right direction. Jaques, who scored 66 and 51, jumped 12 places to 25th position while Symonds climbed eight places to 32nd spot.

For India, former captain Rahul Dravid dropped two places to 14th but Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly climbed one place each and now have South Africa’s Ashwell Prince and Australia’s Adam Gilchrist firmly in their sights. Only five ratings point separate 15th place Prince from 18th place Ganguly. There were all smiles in the West Indies camp after its first Test victory in 31 months and maiden win on South African soil. Captain Chris Gayle, who scored 66 and 29, jumped five places to 23rd while opener Daren Ganga climbed 11 places to 58th. Marlon Samuels, who won the player of the match award for his 94 and 40, rocketed 18 places to 63rd while Shivnarine Chanderpaul, whose 104 in the first innings was the foundation for a big first innings total, established himself in 10th position and is now just nine points adrift of Pakistan’s Yunus Khan in ninth place. The only consolation for South Africa was the improvement in AB de Villiers’ ranking. He climbed eight places to 33rd position.

Meanwhile, Prince and Graeme Smith dropped one place each to 15th and 22nd respectively. Hashim Amla fell four places to 38th while Herschelle Gibbs, who had a pair in the Port Elizabeth Test, dropped 11 places to 40th spot. In the ICC player rankings for Test bowlers, Australia’s Stuart Clark replaced South Africa’s Makhaya Ntini in second place whose team-mate Dale Steyn also dropped three places to sixth. Clark’s effort of 5-48 in the Test helped him jump two places and placed him 27 points ahead of Ntini who managed 4-135 in the match and consequently conceded 13 ratings points.

India captain Anil Kumble and Brett Lee of Australia gained one place each. Kumble’s match effort of 7-186 puts him in fourth place while Lee’s 6-89 places him in fifth position, just two points behind the Indian wrist spinner.

Mitchell Johnson’s 3-21 in the second innings helped him gain nine places and he is now ranked in 45th spot.

Like its batsmen, West Indies’ bowlers are also on an upward move. While Fidel Edwards retained his place in 34th position, Jerome Taylor jumped seven places to 35th spot, Daren Powell climbed two places to 38th position and Darren Sammy lifted four places to 46th position. In the player rankings for Test all-rounders, Chris Gayle leapfrogged India’s Irfan Pathan in sixth place. However, the West Indies captain is still 29 points behind fifth-placed Chaminda Vaas of Sri Lanka. The all-rounders’ list is headed by Kallis with England’s Andrew Flintoff a distant second. +/- Expand Post

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Vaas inspires Ruhuna to easy win

Cricinfo: The newly laid pitches at the tsunami-struck Galle International Stadium continued to intrigue batsmen when Basnahira North secured an easy seven-wicket win over Ruhuna in the Inter-provincial limited-over tournament match.

Sent into bat, Ruhuna were bowled out for 102 inside 38 overs with only Sanath Jayasuriya, their captain, able to stand off Basnahira's attack. He scored 27 off 33 balls - he had to retire hurt on one but the fall of a succession of wickets forced him to return - after Chaminda Vaas had tore through the top order. He captured three wickets in his third over to leave Basnahira reeling at 4 for 3 before Upal Tharanga's dismissal on 20 brought Jayasuriya back in the middle. He managed to somewhat steady the innings before edging behind with the score on 55.

Vaas' initial spell of five overs yielded three wickets for 11 runs and he was not needed further in the innings as Gayan Wijekoon and Dhammika Prasad cleaned up the rest of the batting sharing six wickets.

Basnahira North lost three wickets for 29 runs when they began their run chase, but the result was never in doubt as Kaushal Silva and Thilina Kandamby, with plenty of overs in hand, formed a 75-run unbroken fourth-wicket partnership off 18 overs to seal a comfortable victory.

Writes Sa'adi Thawfeeq for Cricinfo.

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[Video] Sri Lanka v England, 3rd Test, Galle, 4th day 2007/08

4th day
Bulletin - Weather and Cook delay Sri Lanka
Andrew Miller - Cook seeks redemption

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[Video] Malinga's searing throat ball gets Pietersen

Found this on YouTube. It's very well produced and deserves to be highlighted. The Pietersen dismissal was crucial at that point in the match.

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[Video] Percy, Percy, give us a song - Barmy Army in Kandy, Dec 2007

Uncle Percy in action!

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[Video] Michael Vaughan's Barmy Army

Click expand post below if no video is visible above

Hillarious! Check out these 3 Lankan boys in the ranks of the Barmy Army!

agriculture, weeds, forestry, iodine, photron, shop cricket australia, national geographic, ceylon tea

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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Ranatunga to take over as president of Sri Lanka Cricket

Arjuna Ranatunga will take over as president of the Sri Lankan Cricket board next week. He will be replacing Jayantha Dharmadasa.

A senior member of Sri Lanka cricket told The Sunday Times that all major decision were held in abeyance – including the salary package of Presidential Cricket advisor D.S. de Silva, awaiting Ranatunga’s arrival.

“Ranatunga also may have a completely different committee,” he said.

Meanwhile Ranatunga himself commenting on the move said, “I still really do not know the exact date, but, all that I know is it is going to happen within the first week of January”.

Ranatunga, one of the most reliable middle order batsmen that Sri Lanka ever produced, played in Sri Lanka’s inaugural Test match as an 18-year-old schoolboy in 1982 and then went onto lead the Lankan team till 1999. Writes S.R. Pathiravithana for the Sunday Times.

Iphone, motorola, nokia, apple, agriculture, fashion, perez hilton +/- Expand Post

[Video] Test cricket's greatest wicket taker | 'Murali'

Another Murali montage of mine featuring the master himself.

Audio track - Galvanize - The Chemical Brothers feat: Q Tip.

Muttiah, Murali, Muralitharan, obama, bentley, honda +/- Expand Post

Friday, December 28, 2007

[Video] Awesome Catch Farveez Maharoof Vs India 2007

Farveez Maharoof Pulls Off a stunning catch amidst a potential mid air collition with team mate Malinga Bandara.

The catch eventually won Sri Lanka the match.

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[Video] 1996 Wills World Cup Finals | Sri Lanka Vs Australia

"The Sri Lankans, coached by Dav Whatmore and captained by Arjuna Ranatunga, used Player of the Tournament Sanath Jayasuriya and Romesh Kaluwitharana as opening batsmen to take advantage of the fielding restrictions during the first 15 overs of each innings. At a time when 50 or 60 runs in the first 15 overs was considered adequate, Sri Lanka scored 117 runs in those overs against India, 123 against Kenya, 121 against England in the quarter-final and 86 against India in the semi-final. Against Kenya, Sri Lanka made 398 for 5, a new record for the highest team score in a one-day international that stood until April 2006."

1st Session

2nd Session

1996 World Cup Finals Highlights | Run time 12:27

Presentation Ceremony

ABC(AUS) news report

    Courtesy Cricinfo.

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[Video] Sanath Jayasuriya Vs Andre Adams

Sanath has wrecked a few careers in his time. He belted the life out of Andre Adams in every single encounter between them.

No video above?

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[Video] Russell Arnold 47 Vs Pakistan | Sharjah

Thank you for the memories and good luck Russell.

Sri Lanka Cricket may have forgotten you at your peak but cricket fans world over knew that you were served with cruel injustice.

Thanks for the good times and the many face saving knocks you played to salvage our team.

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[Video] Murali Magic | England 2006

Murali in action during the 2006 tour of England.
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[Video] Amazing Catch | Tillekeratne Dilshan

Dilshan pulls off a stunner. +/- Expand Post

[Video] The 'ANAL-yst' in Sri Lanka

Sources in Sri Lanka claim the country is facing a shortage of both fish and potatoes not to mention an acute shortage of beer and various other spirits.

As the title proclaims it's 'anal-ist' not analyst!

Ha ha! A spoof up of Simon Hughes' Analyst in Sri Lanka series perhaps?

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[Video] Murali and Mahela | Mobitel Commercial

Muralidaran and Jayawardena in a new Mobitel Lanka Commercial.

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[Video] Spectacular Six | Farveez Maharoof | 2006

From the block hole to the boundary.

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[Video] Muttiah 'Murali' Muralidaran | 700 to 709

The first Video Timeline of it's kind. The video is missing the Ravi Bopara dismissal which was Murali's 708th scalp.

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

[Video] Sri Lanka v England, Third Test, Galle, 3rd day 2007/08

3rd day
Bulletin - Hopeless England routed for 81
Andrew Miller - England's goose is cooked
Plays of the day - Vaas the bat
Quotes - Vaas proud of allround display
Audio - David Lloyd: Sri Lanka were sensational

No video above?

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If you don't have Veoh TV yet consider downloading it? Most of my extended highlights can only be viewed on Veoh TV.

Any video hosted on Veoh which is over 30 minutes in run time will display just a 5 minute online preview so watching it on the Veoh TV player is the only option. +/- Expand Post

[Video] Sanath Jayasuriya Vs Angus Fraser | 1998

The Sri Lankan's were not worthy of more than one test match. At least that's what the English authorities thought. Sri Lanka left the English red faced as they completely demolished them with both bat and ball.

Jayasuriya destroyed their bowling with 200+ and De Silva scored 150 in the 1st innings; Murali destroyed the English batting in the Pom's 2nd inning. With Sri Lanka requiring 35 to win the one off test vs England. Jaysauriya decides to finish the game ASAP.

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[Video] Sanath Jayasuriya 51(25) Vs New Zealand | 20Twenty Cricket 2006

Jayasuriya broke the record for the fastest 20/20 half century at the time, during the 2006/07 tour to New Zealand. +/- Expand Post

[Video] Classic Catches | Lalith Kaluperuma 1982

REWIND: Allot Caught off a spectacular second attempt by Lalith Kaluperuma. The bowler, Somchandra De Silva is considered to be one of the finest leg spinners to come out of the island. This footage incidentally is also Sri Lanka's 1st Ever Test Match.

Want a chance to win this match on DVD? Click here.

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Gentleman can succeed too, you know?

My Physical Training class during my High School days at St. Peter’s College, Colombo purely consisted of Cricket. Having had various other options at the time with school facilities boasting of a swimming pool, Basketball court and a huge athletics field every student chose Cricket and there were no exceptions to that. Such was the interest in the game at the time that the students would only want to play or be taught cricket and nothing else.

One of the first coaching lessons I recall included a very thorough introduction to the game with constant and consistent reminders that Cricket is a game that boasts of high spirits and only taken up by gentlemen who can up hold the spirit of the game. Kudos to the PT Tutor at the time for his efforts in trying to not only inculcate the spirit of the game to his students but also for molding us into players who boast of exemplary behavior.

This is an admirable trait that carries fourth today in some of our oldest members in the current Lankan squad. Sanath jayasuriya is the shining example. Jayasuriya will never be remembered for on field disciplinary incidents, sledging or any absurd volatile remarks. Today he stands as a testimonial to all. His true talent and hard work has overshadowed the opposition’s verbal skills.

In my mind the term ’sledging’ requires thorough interpretation. Regardless of what’s said on the field, the intent behind sledging is what I question. To mentally bring down an individual by means of verbal abuse is not something we tolerate in today’s society. Why we allow it into a sport that boasts of a higher degree of spirit is baffling.

What Vexes me the most is the fact that some of us have chosen to accept this un healthy behavior, not fully understanding it’s consequences. Ice Hockey in North America is now more competitive fighting than a form of Hockey played on ice! The younger generation Toronto Maple Leaf’s fans are attracted to the sport due to the bashing involved.

Video - Hockey Fights
(Viewer Discretion Advised)

Sanath Jayasuriya - stats courtesy of Cricinfo

No one in the History of ODI Cricket has played more ODI’s than Sanath.

The second highest run scorer next to Tendulkar in ODi’s.

The Second in the list of player’s to receive the Most Man of the Match Awards.

Kevin Pietersen highlighted the remarkably well disciplined and well mannered Sri Lankan behavior in a recent interview. “Murali doesn’t say a lot, he just winds you up and winds you up because he knows he’s going to get you out,” Pietersen said. “He just smiles and laughs. He’s a really happy guy, a nice guy - I call him the silent assassin. He has so much talk on the cricket ball he doesn’t have to say much.”

As usual I leave you with a point to ponder on. How many International wickets do you think have fallen to intimidatory tactics than the skill of the bowler? It’s a compliment to one’s skills if he can bamboozle the batsmen with pace, swing, seam, drift or flight or would you rather be remembered as the greatest trash talker of the game?

The Lankan’s are thorough gentlemen, humble and modest as their up bringing. They play the game with the right spirit and it has not gone unnoticed.

“Mr. Vaas, my name is Andy Heger, and I’m a Sri Lanka cricket fan from the states …”

He looked at me. His face said, “Of course you are. What took you so long?” This guy has ice-water in his veins – he is totally unflappable. He took the picture. He even sort of smiled.

We were happy for our good fortune and getting ready to leave the hotel when a real commotion started by the door. This time it was Sanath Jayasuriya, the MVP of Sri Lanka’s 1996 World Cup-winning team. Needless to say, he is a legend of Sri Lankan cricket.

Bald, buff, lean and mean, Jayasuriya immediately reminded me of Marvin Hagler – he looks like a champion middleweight boxer.

“Mr. Jayasuriya, my name …”

He looked at me. His face said, “You can’t possibly be serious.” Still, he stopped and quickly took the picture – smiled even.

- Andrew Heger

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Thanks to Andrew and Melissa for the pictures - Sri Lanka’s All American Cheering Squad.

Find more of Andrew’s and Melissa’s photos and interesting encounters -

Orginally published on April 14, 2007 in +/- Expand Post

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

[Video] It's time for the band to go home - Botham

Someone forgot to tell the entertainment they only get paid to play during the breaks. As Botham put it 'It's time for the band to go home'.

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[Video] Sri Lanka v England, Third Test, Galle, 2nd day 2007/08

2nd day
Bulletin - Unstoppable Jayawardene brings series closer
Andrew Miller - Jayawardene hits out at England's effort
Quotes - An opportunity availed by Dilshan
Plays of the day - Jayawardene's gains and Prior's losses
Audio - David Lloyd: England down and out

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Win a copy of Sri Lanka's Maiden Test match on DVD!

Here's a chance to own a copy of this rare footage from 1982. Sri Lanka's maiden test match on DVD!


Subscribe to my email newsletter and 3 lucky subscribers will stand the chance to win a copy each. Ships worldwide!

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Your email address will NOT be shared. Check your email inbox for the subscription verification email. Only 'confirmed' subscriptions will be valid. So check your inbox for an email and confirm your subscription. This is to prevent abuse and unauthorised subscriptions.

First draw to be held on the 4th Of Feb 2008. Hurry! Get your subscriptions in!
Winner: Samantha Samaranayake (Sri Lanka)

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[Video] Avishka Gunewardene 52 Vs India | Sharjah |1998

Avishka destroys the Indian bowling in one of his rare noteworthy performances.

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[Video] ICC Spirit of Cricket Award | Sri Lanka | 2007

The Sri Lanka team was named as the recipient of the Spirit of Cricket Award at the ICC Awards celebration in Johannesburg on Monday.

The Spirit of Cricket Award was presented to the team which, in the opinion of the elite panel of umpires and referees and the captains of the ten Test teams, has best conducted themselves on the field within the spirit of the game. The award was presented to Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene by former South Africa batsman Jonty Rhodes.

Upon receiving the award on behalf of his team Jayawardene said: "I think it's important to remember the spirit of cricket. We try to enjoy what we do, playing against other countries. That was shown in the World Cup with Ireland - they really enjoyed themselves there and it was great to play against that team too.

"We are there to win a match but we are also entertainers as well. The most important thing we can do is enjoy the game. We are very lucky to do what we do and it is vital that we remember that. We play a different brand of cricket and we all enjoy playing. There is so much pride to wear the cap for our country. Spirit of cricket can be explained in many different ways."

This Spirit is described in the preamble to the Laws of Cricket: "Cricket is a game that owes much of its unique appeal to the fact that it should be played not only within its Laws but also within the Spirit of the Game. Any action which is seen to abuse this spirit causes injury to the game itself."

This is the first time Sri Lanka has won the award, after England collected the last two and New Zealand took the honour at the inaugural ICC Awards in 2004. Sri Lanka was one of several teams that demonstrated the Spirit of Cricket to great effect over the past 12 months and they narrowly defeated Ireland and New Zealand for the prize.

© Cricinfo

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[Video] Sanath Jayasuriya 88(44) Vs Kenya |World Twenty20 Cup 2007

REWIND: The Lankans got off to a romping start with veteran opener Sanath Jayasuriya smashed the ball to all corners of the park, before holding out to short mid-on.

Sanath Jayasuriya was the Man of the Match for his thundering knock of 88 from 44 balls, during which he smashed four sixes and 11 fours +/- Expand Post

Sunday, December 23, 2007

[Video] Aney Yako! Sanjay what happened?

Sanjay, I think you are one of the finest commentators out there, I couldn't let this one go. It's not everyday this happens so please don't take offense to this. +/- Expand Post

Nuwan Zoysa reminds the selectors of his existence

Source: Cricinfo

Man-of-the-Match Nuwan Zoysa smashes a six during his 29-ball 48, Sinhalese Sports Club v Moors Sports Club, Premier Limited Over Tournament Tier A final, Colombo, December 23, 2007.

Former Sri Lankan opening bowler and dynamic all rounder Nuwan Zoysa from SSC was named man of the match for another splendid performance on the field.

Zoysa who enjoyed a successful tournament hit a sparkling knock of 48 runs from just 29 deliveries in his team’s total of 243 for 7 wickets and then followed up with a controlled opening spell of bowling to put the brakes on the Moors SC run rate.

Zoysa send down his ten overs on the trot and played a good supporting role to his opening partner Shalika Karunanayake who caused the early damage with three quick wickets.

However Moors SC recovered through a fourth wicket stand of 75 runs between Anil Rideegamanagedera and Dasun Randhika.

The pair revived their innings with some intelligent batting before both departed within the space of seven deliveries.

But a superb piece of fielding from Mahela Jayawardena saw the dismissal of Randhika who was shaping up well having struck four boundaries.

In the next over Anil Rideegammanagedera also made his exit for a hard hit 46 which contained four boundaries.

Another solid 76 run stand for the seventh wicket between skipper Dilhara Lokuhettige and Suresh Perera lifted Moors SC’s hopes as they punished the SSC bowlers to all parts of the ground under fading light.

Lokuhettige hoisted two sixes and struck two boundaries while Suresh Perera also hoisted one six and stroked three boundaries to keep their chances alive. However SSC came back strongly to send back both batsmen inside three deliveries and eventually they finished on top of the run rate when the umpires called off play due to bad light.

Earlier SSC after been put into bat recovered from an early setback to post a competitive total of 243 for 7 from 48 overs.

They reached a shaky 110 for 3 at the half way stage of the innings but two useful knocks from wicket keeper batsman Kaushal Silva and Nuwan Zoysa took them closer towards the 250 run mark.

The former hit a top score of 62 from 89 balls with the help of three boundaries but it was all rounder Zoysa who really accelerated the scoring rate with a brisk 48 from just 29 deliveries inclusive of three sixes and three boundaries.

Silva and Zoysa were associated in a superb 71 run stand for the sixth wicket from just 7.2 overs and that really put SSC in to a commanding position.

T. Paranavithana c Randhika b Ranjith 29
A. Gunawadena c Randhika b Ranjith 33
K. Silva b Welagedera 62
M. Jayawardena run out 21
T. Kandamby c Randhika b Welagedera 25
N. Zoysa c Lokuhettige b Ranjith 48
T. Thushara c Herath b Ranjith 1
S. Karunanayake not out 2
D. Prasad not out 0
Extras (lb11, w10, nb1) 22
TOTAL (for 7 wickets in 48 overs) 243
FALL OF WICKETS: 1-62, 2-76, 3-110, 4-160, 5-231, 6-241, 7-241.
BOWLING: Welegedera 10-0-39-2, Ranjith 10-1-75-4,
Lokuhettige 10-1-35-0, A.Rideegammanagedera 7-0-38-0,
Herath 8-0-30-0, Mudalige 3-0-15-0.

D. Sudarshana lbw b Karunanayake 10
N. Nawala c Gunawardena b Karunanayake 16
R. Peiris c Samaraweera b Karunanayake 2
D. Randhika run out 43
A. R’gedera c and b Senanayake 46
D. Lokuhettige c Jayawardena b Prasad 36
S. Perera b Mirando 39
R. Herath not out 3
N. Ranjith not out 1
Extras (w 9) 9
TOTAL (for 7 wickets in 42.3 overs) 205
FALL OF WICKETS: 1-20, 2-28, 3- 46, 4-121, 5- 124, 6-200, 7-203.
BOWLING: Zoysa 10-0-35-0,Karunanayake 10-1-52-3, D. Prasad 7-1-32-1,
S.Senanayake 9-1-40-1, T. Thushara 4.3-0-34-1, T. Paranavithana 2-0-12-0.

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[Video] Sri Lanka v England, 3rd Test, Galle, 1st day 2007/08

1st day
Bulletin - Late Harmison burst gives England edge
Plays of the day - Harrying Harmy finds his mojo
Andrew Miller - "I've stopped beating myself up" - Harmison
Quotes - Bayliss surprised by pitch
Audio - David Lloyd: England wasted first session

Preview package
Preview - England set for battle in refurbished Galle
Andrew Miller - Sumangela's field of dreams
News - England see the bigger picture
News - Sri Lanka aim for No. 2 spot in ICC rankings
Stats - Murali's favourite venue

Click here

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[Video] Sri Lanka Vs England 3rd Test 2007 | Presentation Ceremony

"Sri Lanka have been better than us and the heavens have been with us" - Micheal Vaughan.

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England beaten before Sri Lanka series began | Sangakkara

'Their pre-series media interviews provided a subtle clue. There was a lot of talk about how "tough" it is to play in Sri Lanka and how "difficult" it would be to win.

It was almost as if they were booking early excuses for failure. It may have been subconscious, but I thought they were saying to themselves - and us - that it didn't matter if they lost.' - Writes Kumar Sangakkara for the Telegraph.

Sri Lanka should also take a lesson from this, our recent approach to the Tour down under was no different. Even prior to setting foot in Australia all we heard was how 'tough' it's going to be.

That kind of mentality ensures the inexperienced members in the team will always approach the game on the back foot.

Touring Australia should not be any tougher than touring anywhere else, in fact with the facilities and 5 star accommodation provided, Australia is one of the 'easier' places to tour.

Compare Australia to the sub- continent's crammed flights, tight schedules, the heat and the traffic. Teams are constantly subjected to 3-4 hour car rides going no further than a distance of 60-80KMs. Over here in North America the highway traffic moves at 100KMs/H that would basically mean an hour's trip over here takes roughly around 3-4 hours in Lanka. Now that's got to be hell! +/- Expand Post

[PIC] 15 days of torture, Thanks for nothing England!

Picture courtesy Telegraph/Getty

Sore losers if you ask me. The commentary team and various other journalist were pretty peeved when they saw this up.
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Saturday, December 22, 2007

[Video] "God Couldn't Play That" -Tony Cozier | Lasith Malinga 2006

"it's all fear and skittles for the Black Caps. The bruised and confused home side fell tamely as Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga took a career-best 5-68 to give the tourists an iron grip on the second test.

Malinga's slingy right-arm action from the Bob Vance Stand end saw New Zealand ripped out for 130 in its first innings. Sri Lanka then piled on the agony by reaching 225-5, a lead of 363 with three days remaining.

With Brendon McCullum (bruised finger and instep) and Jacob Oram (hamstring) battling for fitness, the Black Caps appear to have a windsurfer's chance in a Wellington gale of salvaging a draw, let alone victory." - AFP

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[Video] Sanath Jayasuriya 73(74) | 2nd Test Match Vs South Africa | 2006

FLASHBACK: His innings of 73 was crucial towards sri lanka chasing down 300+ to beat South africa in the final innings to win the test match and the series 2-0.

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[Video] Spectacular Run Out Sehwag - Sangakarra Feb 2007

REWIND: Bizzare dismissal | Pay close attention to the video; It appears Sehwag would have creased his bat if not for Ganguly's call. Sehwag turned to look at Ganguly and failed to crease his bat.

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One bad egg

"The blasphemy of the selectors is that their second choices are substandard, yet they are very reluctant to admit the fact and bring in remedial measures. Even during the Test series against Bangladesh there were rumours about Sanath playing the last few Test matches and the selectors being ready to make the request from him? Then came the question about Chaminda Vaas’ ability to lead the Lankan seam attack, but he proved them wrong with a splendid spell in the final Test match.

It surfaced again till he shut them up even for the time being with his “my arm will provide you with the answers” attitude against England. What a difference it made to see T.M. Dilshan in that number six slot. When he walked on to the wicket with the Sri Lankan batting hanging on a tentative 138 for 4 with the English bowlers wagging with their tails up, Dilshan took the fight to them, made them err and then put the Lankan innings on course along with his skipper Mahela Jayawardena who came up with yet another gem of an effort. To cap his effort with the bat Dilshan then took the second English wicket when he tolled Bell run out with a direct throw. With his demise England once again proved the domino theory.

Coming back to the selectors now more than often they tend to put their foot in the mouth by making the wrong choices. What the country needs now is the inclusion of players who will perform there out in the middle on a regular basis and may be with a good track record, but not so-and-so’s relation coming from the same school that so-and-so went to." writes - S.R.Pathiravithana for The Sunday Times
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Galle: Now test match with UNESCO

"The controversy over the new international cricket stadium in Galle and its alleged threat to the area’s heritage city status continues with the Urban Development Ministry now assuring that a pavilion will be rebuilt to conform with the heritage status recognised by the UNESCO.

Urban Development Ministry Secretary P. Ramanujam said the stadium and the pavilion named last week after President Mahinda Rajapaksa were built in a rush due to this week’s test match and the rebuilding would take place soon. Meanwhile a UNESCO spokesman told the Sunday Times that a decision would be taken whether to de-list the Galle site from the heritage list or not by considering the actions of the authorities after the match.

“The UDA gave the assurance that the unauthorised construction would be removed after the match,” he said. Adding to the controversy, Galle Mayor Kelum Seneviratne told The Sunday Times the municipal council had unanimously decided not to demolish the pavilion which was constructed on an plan approved by the UDA." writes Isuri Kaviratne and Gamini Mahadura for The Sunday Times.

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Gilchrist praises Murali’s honesty

DAILY MIRROR ONLINE EDITION: Australian vice-captain and wicket keeper Adam Gilchrist has praised Muttiah Muralidaran’s honesty when approaching the world record recently and will try do the same as he aims to break Ian Healy's Australian record of 395 dismissals at the boxing day test against India.

"I quite liked his honesty about when he came out to Australia," Gilchrist told the ‘Australian’ newspaper today. "He said 'look, it's going to happen. When it happens I don't know'.

"I don't think he was being big-headed in saying it was inevitable it's going to happen. With the amount of cricket I intend to play, I'm not pulling out in the immediate future, I think it's inevitable it will occur and I think Heals will understand that it was always going to be the case at some stage in the future.

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[Video] The Analyst in Sri Lanka: Series highlights

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Some great, and not so great, moments from Simon Hughes' reports on England's tour of Sri Lanka.

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Vaas number 5 in top 100 Test all-rounders | ICC rankings

Browsing through the ICC rankings today I came across the Top 100 LG ICC Test All- Rounders list.

Here is a man who is ranked number 5 in a list of the world's best all rounders.

Murali has always found wickets 'tailor made' to suit spinners, the batsman have the game and the rules heavily stacked in their favour; With little or no assistance from subcontinental pitches Chaminda Vaas has toiled tirelessly and worked hard to serve his nation and team. His story has largely gone untold.

The first time I came across Chaminda was at the Colts CC nets during the early 90's, I was attending cricket practices which were held by none other than Roy Dias. The story of a Sri Lankan cricketer is vastly different from other players around the world, I bumped into Vaas a few years later on the 154 bus! Prior to the 1996 world cup many Lankan cricketers had to resort to public transportation and it has been a struggle for most of them.

His accomplishments have not heralded front page interviews nor have any 'jenny's from the block' turned up at his door for a cover story. The majority of international journalist waste time and editorial space conducting interviews in English with blokes whose 1st language is not English and as a result many cricket enthusiasts outside Sri Lanka have never had the chance to understand the man's cunning wicket taking psyche or his humorous side.

The irony is that when Vaas performs it goes unnoticed but when he has a bad day everyone calls for his head and talk of retirement fill the air. Thats sub-continental gratitude for a man who stands at number 16 in the list of all time wicket takers and number 5 in the ICC all rounders rankings. +/- Expand Post

Friday, December 21, 2007

[Video] Sri Lanka v England | 2ND Test, Day 5 | Colombo 2007/08

5th day
Bulletin - Rain helps England ease to safety
Andrew Miller - Let there be life after featherbed bore
Plays of the day - Bell's bravado and Malinga the klutz
Quotes - Jayawardene blames England for dull draw
Audio - David Lloyd: Graeme Swann should play at Galle

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[Video] Repairing the roof Asgiriya Stadium Kandy

Filmed by the British tourist present on Day 5 of the 1st Test.

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

[Video] Aney Yako | SSC ground staff 'Bust A Move'

Our home grown 'Brothas' bust-a-move During one of the many rain breaks at the SSC (2nd Test Vs England 2007)

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[Video] England vs. Sri Lanka | 3rd Test | 3rd Day | 1st Session

The morning session of the 3rd day which was highlighted by the brilliance of Mahela's double 100.

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[Video] England vs Sri Lanka | 3rd Test | England Collapse (20/12/07)

Remarkable bowling and fielding by the Lankans sparked a remarkable collapse.

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[Video] The Analyst in Sri Lanka - Third test Day 2

Simon Hughes on a day when record-breaking Mahela Jayawardene continued to defy England's bowlers.

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Jayawardene Senior Proud Of Mahela

Cricket 365:

When Mahela Jayawardene was on 149 not out at stumps on the second day, his father Sanarath Jayawardene was confident his son would score a double century the next day.

"I had not the slightest doubt in my mind about his double ton today. I feel great. It was a wonderful knock," he told Cricket365 from his Colombo home minutes after Mahela completed his double century on Thursday.

Mahela's parents did not go to Galle to watch the match.

"His wife (Christina) is at the stadium. I stayed home because Mahela wanted me to record each delivery he faced. I have recorded his entire innings on DVD. Mahela will watch all balls and try to rectify the faulty shots," Jayawardene senior added.

"He took time to complete the double century today. However, it is significant to note here that the wicket was not good.

"Even England's skipper [Michael Vaughan] decided to field first after winning the toss because this being the first Test here after the tsunami hit, the wicket was new and its behaviour was not known to anybody."

Mahela's 21 hundreds are the most by any Sri Lankan batsman.

"Aravinda de Silva predicted a few days ago this would happen. He had hopes on Mahela and my son has proved him right. He has scored so many hundreds but this is special to us," his dad said.

Jayawardene Snr also hopes the home team will win the Galle Test.

"I have no doubt about our victory in this Test and thus the team will gain the number two spot in the ICC rankings.

"I also hope Mahela grabs the man of the match award," he signed off.

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Pathetic England hit new low against Sri Lanka

AFP: Pathetic England hit new low against Sri Lanka: England's hopes of salvaging the Sri Lanka Test series were dashed when they were shot out for just 81, their lowest total against the hosts, in the third and final match.

Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene hit an unbeaten 213 and Chaminda Vaas ripped through the top order to leave England, trailing 0-1 in the series, in tatters on the rain-hit third day at Galle International Stadium.

Left-armer Vaas followed his 90 in Sri Lanka's 499-8 declared with four wickets as England collapsed in just 30.5 overs and were forced to follow-on 418 runs behind.

The tourists were 2-0 in their second knock in the lone over bowled by off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan with the new ball before bad light halted play for the day.

England's pathetic 81 fell below their previous low of 148 against Sri Lanka in Colombo on the previous tour in 2003.

Paul Collingwood's 29 was the top score as eight batsmen failed to reach double figures on a wicket that afforded bounce but was not treacherous, as the Sri Lankan batsmen showed.

The hosts, denied two hours of play in the post-lunch period due to heavy rain, have six sessions to force victory and secure a 2-0 scoreline that will lift them to second place behind Australia in the official rankings.

"It was a disappointing day for us," conceded Collingwood. "To be bowled out for that kind of total is not good enough, and there are some disappointed faces in the dressing room.

"We are going to have to show in the next couple of days the kind of fight we can put up.

"Results-wise you can look from the outside and say we are in a slump. But we know where we are as a team and there is plenty of passion in the dressing room."

Sri Lanka's total revolved around skipper Jayawardene's double century and his 183-run stand for the seventh wicket with Vaas before the declaration came 50 minutes before lunch.

England found themselves in deep trouble at 22-4 in the short period of play before lunch, losing captain Michael Vaughan, Ian Bell, Alastair Cook and Kevin Pietersen in a sensational eight-over burst.

Vaughan was declared leg-before to Vaas and Bell was run out at the non-striker's end by a direct throw from point by Tillekeratne Dilshan.

Cook was unlucky to be given out caught behind off Vaas by umpire Asad Rauf, as television replays showed the ball may have missed the outside edge of the bat.

Pietersen fended a brutish short ball from Lasith Malinga to wicket-keeper Prasanna Jayawardene.

The tourists slumped to 33-6 soon after lunch before Collingwood and Ryan Sidebottom put on 37 runs in the best partnership of the innings.

Debutant left-arm seamer Chanaka Welegedara bowled Collingwood to pick up his first Test wicket and then removed Matthew Hoggard to finish with 2-17 from eight overs.

Jayawardene, Sri Lanka's leading run-getter and centurion in Tests, continued to flay the England attack after making 195 in the drawn second Test in Colombo last week.

His 21st three-figure knock, which helped him surpass Aravinda de Silva's Sri Lankan record of 20 on Wednesday, was studded with 25 hits to the fence.

It was Jayawardene's third double century in addition to a career-best 374 against South Africa in Colombo two years ago.

Left-handed Vaas missed his second Test century by 10 runs when he top-edged an intended hook off Hoggard and was caught at the second attempt by Vaughan at mid-wicket.

"I missed the opportunity to get a century, but 90 is better than nothing," said Vaas, the 33-year-old veteran of 102 Tests.

"When you get older you have to concentrate on batting as well. Playing county cricket improved my batting and luckily I have bowled well in this series as well." +/- Expand Post

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

[Video] Sri Lanka v England | 2ND Test, Day 4 | Colombo 2007/08

4th day

Bulletin - England fight but face battle to survive
Andrew Miller - Harmison shows his hunger
Plays of the day - Keeping the bounce and spirits high
Quotes - Jayawardene targets series victory
Audio - David Lloyd: Sri Lanka just delayed things

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[Video] Marvelous Marvan 75 Vs Kolkota Tigers | ICL

"Who says Marvan can't play 20Twenty Cricket?" - Tony Greig.

Indian Cricket League, 2007 Delhi Jets vs Kolkata Tigers, 3rd Position Match Tau Devi Lal Stadium, Panchkula, December 16, 2007. Match Status: Delhi Jets won by 5 wkts.

dell, apple, iphone, kookaburra cricket, gray nicholls, ICL, cricket, sri lanka tours, sri lanka clothes, alienware, laptops, ebay auction, western union, australia cricket, sri lankan airlines
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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

[Video] Sri Lanka Vs England | 3rd Test, Day 1 | Summary

Summary of the first days play. +/- Expand Post

[Video] An exclusive first look at Chanaka Welagedera

Chanaka Welagedera practicing at the nets, Galle.

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[Video] Sri Lanka Vs England | 3rd Test, Day 1 | Morning Session

Brief highlights of the morning session.

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[Video] Sri Lanka Vs England | 3rd Test, Day 1 | Evening Session

Brief highlights of the final session.

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[Video] The Analyst in Sri Lanka - Third test Day 1

Simon Hughes' daily round up from Galle, Sri Lanka.

Footage courtesy of Telegraph TV

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[Video] Sri Lanka v England | 2ND Test, Day 3 | Colombo 2007/08

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3rd day

Bulletin - Jayawardene masterclass puts Sri Lanka on top
Andrew Miller - England handed reality check
Quotes - Jayawardene leaves England floundering
Plays of the day - Mahela's home comforts
Roving reporter - Barmy Army enliven Colombo
Audio - David Lloyd: It's not happening for Monty

Courtesy Cricinfo

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Sportstar Interview | Muttiah Muralidaran

Rex Clementine speaks to the World record holder Muttiah Muralidaran, originally published in The Sports Star Magazine.

"Was it disappointing not to have got the record in Australia?

It was disappointing, not just the record but we were badly beaten in that series. I thought the Australians played really well and they deserved to win. I also had a few catches put down and it didn’t help the cause. More than the record, what I was concerned about was helping the team win a Test there as we had the nucleus to do it this time around. The defeat taught us a few lessons and I am sure we’ll be a better side for the experience."

"Tell us about that dismissal of Paul Collingwood in the first innings to break the record.

I was surprised that it happened in the first innings itself. I equaled the record on day two with four wickets. I was a bit nervous that day and bowled about nine overs without taking a wicket. Then the new ball was due and Mahela (Jayawardene) wanted me to bowl with the new ball. I bowled an off-spinner to Paul Collingwood, but it didn’t spin and he was bowled. That probably skidded off the pitch. I was very relieved to get the record. There was some pressure and it was good it all happened in the first innings."
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Cricinfo - Bayliss surprised by Galle pitch

Cricinfo - Bayliss surprised by Galle pitch: "We would have bowled first as well. What we were surprised about is the wicket probably didn't do as much as both teams thought it might. It certainly swung around as we thought it would due to the humidity this morning, but it has flattened out fairly quickly," Bayliss said.

"It hasn't got a lot of pace in it. The wicket is not too dissimilar to the first that we played on. It's a little bit hard to drive on. It's a wicket you've got to work hard to score your runs." said Bayliss talking to Saadi Thawfeeq in Galle.

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Monday, December 17, 2007

[Video] Al Jazeera special on Galle Cricket Stadium

International cricket is set to return to a town destroyed by the Asian tsunami. +/- Expand Post

[Video] A preview of Galle ahead of the 3rd Test

Courtesy TelegraphTV
Simon Hughes looks ahead to the third and final Test of England's tour of Sri Lanka. +/- Expand Post

Racism in Australian grounds? NOT a myth..

February 2008 will see Sri Lanka traveling yet again to Australia. This time to take on the Aussies in a ODI triangular series, which also features India.

My mind took me back to an interesting piece written by Peter Roebuck for the AGE.

This was published the last time Sri Lanka toured Australia for the VB Series.

"A few rows in front there was a bunch of about 10 20-year-olds mouthing off. Most of them were drunk as skunks."

Spectators in the area had little choice but to put up with the ceaseless swearing of these louts. Over the years, Bailey has attended many football and cricket matches and sipped many beers at the ground and cannot remember seeing anything remotely as objectionable as the performance put up by these oafs.

By now, the Sri Lankans were fielding and some of their players were stationed about six metres from the yobbos. "These youths kept calling them names, taunting them, trying to get a rise out of them but they didn't take any notice. It was a constant bombardment. The language was dreadful."

Before long, things turned ugly. Unable to get a response, the thugs started racially abusing fieldsmen. "They called them 'darkies' and then 'black c---s'." Some spectators decided enough was enough. "A couple of guys tried to settle them down. One 60-year-old bloke told them to pipe down, so they turned on him and abused him for 10 minutes. That stopped others in their tracks." Bailey did not see any sign of marshals or police.

Bailey decided to leave the area. As much as the racism, it was the endless foul language and total disregard of other spectators that infuriated him. He told his bemused son that these hoodlums were "the opposite of role models. I tried to turn it into a positive. I said there are clowns everywhere in the world. I'm not sure it worked. Maybe it was just a negative experience". He took his son to the Ladies Stand, where a large group of Sri Lankans were cheerfully supporting their side. "They were playing music and singing. Everyone enjoyed their antics."

In the light of these events, having seen visiting players insulted, cricket lovers frustrated and paying customers upset, Bailey believes an area must be set aside for families and children. He also advocates that an SMS number be provided so that spectators can draw attention to misconduct. "Everyone has a mobile phone," he points out. "We don't want people dobbing in for nothing but this was outrageous. These blokes were anti-social. It was embarrassing to be near them."
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It's time for cricket to stamp out Murali-bashing

"Australian supporters have been taking the law into their own hands. Murali's action has been more closely scrutinised than fingerprints at a murder scene. Each time he has passed muster.

Others have been condemned, including Johan Botha — or at least his doosra, a delivery that is really a back-chuck.

Not only has Murali survived the examination of scientists, he has also impressed members of the Australian cricket community, not least Channel Nine's new and distinguished commentators, Michael Slater and Mark Nicholas.

Both have watched Murali bowl at close quarters with a brace on his arm. Moreover, Murali flew to England to undertake the test.

In any event it hardly matters what locals think because the issue has been settled.

No man can spend his entire life on trial. Sooner or later a decision must be taken by the appointed powers, whereupon it must be accepted.

Beyond doubt Murali is a freak, a man whose arms cannot fully straighten and whose elbows rotate prodigiously."

- Writes Peter Roebuck for The Age 2006

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Sri Lanka's Burgher king

Cricinfo Blogs Surfer Digg

Stepping into Sanath Jayasuriya's shoes is a big ask for any man but Michael Vandort has filled the breach with minimum fuss, writes Aravinda de Silva in the London-based Observer.

"At 6ft 5in, he is by far the tallest batsman to play for Sri Lanka and he is going to have to find a way to play with authority on the back foot, for, although the game has become much more front-foot friendly compared to 10 years ago, let alone 20, there will be times he is going to come up against Brett Lee, Shoaib Akhtar and Shane Bond and he's not going to want to be a liability to the team. But I back him to succeed. He has always been a fighter."
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Start delayed by 2 hours | 3rd Test , Galle

Galle will require two additional hours to complete final preparations at the stadium. Play was scheduled to start at 10:30 AM local time, it has now been pushed back to 12:00 noon.

After a day of sunshine all looked well for a timely start until the weather god's intervened with a heavy burst of rain last evening. +/- Expand Post

The MCC lends a hand in Sri Lanka | Sumangela's field of dreams

It is coming up for the third anniversary of the tragedy[Tsunami], but Seenigama is a neighbourhood transformed. Murali's passion, zeal and profile have set in motion the reconstruction of 1000 demolished houses, while Ian Botham and the rock star Bryan Adams are two other improbably connected celebrities who have adopted the cause as their own.

Today, though, it is all about the MCC, the oldest and most famous cricket club of all, which came to hear of the plight of the village, and whose patronage has taken Gunasekera's dream and sent it stratospheric.

The MCC bigwigs are out in force today, to celebrate the culmination of a two-year partnership. Mike Brearley, the president; Keith Bradshaw, the chief executive; John Stephenson, the head of cricket; and Roger Knight, the former secretary, are all in attendance as Gunasekera leads the party through the various and varied phases of his grand project. A craft centre, an English language school, a fully equipped computer centre, and a lively kindergarten for the children too young to recall the horrors that befell their elders. All are fully funded and fully operational, and joyfully received by the local community.

"The MCC has not merely provided a cricket ground and pavilion but a much broader input into the community," said Brearley. "And what is more, money and goodwill tends to attract more money and goodwill." - Writes Andrew Miller for Cricinfo.

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Sri Lanka aim for No. 2 spot in ICC rankings

Cricinfo: Mahela Jayawardene has said the motivation to win the final Test against England starting Tuesday in Galle is to move up to the No. 2 spot in the ICC Test team rankings. Sri Lanka are leading the three-Test series 1-0.

"We haven't been there [No. 2] for quite some time and I can't remember when we were there last," Jayawardene said. "It's a very good incentive for us to go out there and play our best cricket and win this Test."

Sri Lanka are currently at fifth place in the rankings, with four points less than Nos. 3 and 4, South Africa and India, who have 109 each. Jaywardene said his side had been performing consistently and had beaten the top teams of the world, home and away. "We haven't stopped from there, but we improved on it. We got a younger group of players who are coming through. We need to guide them and make sure we push forward."

Out of 21 Tests they have played in the last two years, starting from the series in India in December 2005, Sri Lanka have won 10 and lost seven. Six of the ten wins have come at home. During this period they have won three series, two in Sri Lanka and one in Bangladesh.

Jayawardene's own record in Galle is impressive. He scored his maiden Test hundred here and has three centuries and six half-centuries from 11 matches at the venue. In the last Test he played here in 2004, before the tsunami devastated Sri Lanka, he made 237 in a draw against South Africa.

"It's an emotional comeback. We've seen the changes that have taken place three years after the tsunami. There are a lot of memories on this ground and a lot of people who probably have seen us play here three years ago are not with us. We have moved forward very well after the tsunami and made a lot of leaps and bounds in their lives as well. It's a celebration moment to come back here and play a Test match. It's been a historical venue for us over a period. I am very happy to be here and play another Test, hopefully we'll have new fans."

Jayawardene said he would wait until tomorrow to finalise the XI. "We fairly have an idea what the wicket could do. Usually the square tends to have some bounce we have a fairly good idea of what we want to do. Around 9AM to 9.15AM the ball was doing a bit, but once it got dried up it was playing really well, the odd one would do a bit because of the dampness."

He confirmed that Tillakaratne Dilshan, who replaced Jehan Mubarak in the squad, will bat at No. 6 and was not too worried about the toss result. If you can really knuckle down in tough situations and get the advantage going for you, you should be able to turn things around, like we did in Kandy."

Couresty Cricinfo

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