Our next target is 2011 World Cup: Dilshan

HARARE: After guiding his team to a thumping victory in the tri-nation cricket series, Sri Lanka skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan said the next target for the islanders would be the 2011 World Cup in the sub-continent.
“We brought lots of youngsters here and they have got opportunities and done well. We are looking at World Cup. I got my form back as well. I want to carry it to the World Cup,” said Dilshan, who made an unbeaten 108 in the final and helped Sri Lanka overhaul the 200-run target set by Zimbabwe with 15.2 overs to spare.
Dilshan also heaped praise on the youngsters for their series winning show in Zimbabwe.

“I am very happy. The boys have performed well. The two fast bowlers set the tone for us by bowling really well. (Dinesh) Chandimal got a hundred and Jeevan Mendis is a good all-rounder,” he said.
The 33-year-old right-hander also thanked his teammates for supporting him in his first stint as captain of the Sri Lankan team.

“I would like to thank my teammates for supporting me as a captain. It wasn’t easy to captain and I have enjoyed it. I liked the challenge,” Dilshan said.
Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura, meanwhile, admitted that they were completely outplayed by the Sri Lankans but said there were lots of positives to take from this series.
“Sri Lanka bowled well and put us under pressure from ball one,” he said.
“There are lots of positives to get out of this tournament, especially our batsmen. Unfortunately, we are having a break after this but it’s good for the next season.

“Hopefully we are going in the right way and we will keep winning more matches. Keep watching us and keep supporting us,” Chigumbura said.
His teammate Brendan Taylor, who was adjudged the man-of-the-series, said he was happy to have contributed for his side as an opener.

“It’s very satisfying to get where we are. Unfortunately, we didn’t back it up in the final but we are pleased with how we have gone. Not just my self, others have done well, including (Tatenda) Taibu, (Hamilton) Masakadza and the spinners. I was probably more relaxed in this series. Opening is new to me and I haven’t done it for a while. It’s nice to play with a good bunch of people,” he said. – [PTI]


Duckworth, Lewis get MBE

LONDON: The inventors of cricket’s controversial Duckworth-Lewis method were among those included in the honours list marking the birthday of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II published on Saturday. Frank Duckworth and Tony Lewis, whose surnames have become part of the fabric of cricket, were both awarded the MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire). The university statisticians’ formula is widely regarded as the fairest, if perhaps the most complicated, method yet devised of setting revised targets in one-day matches interrupted by bad weather. – [AFP]


Antonians trounce Rajans 39/13

By M. Minhaz in Kandy
St. Anthony’s College, Katugastota cut loose in the second half to trounce Dharmaraja by 39 points (2 goals, 5 tries) to 13 (2 tries, 1 penalty) in their schools Singer Trophy under 19 division I Segment ‘A’ rugby match played at Nittawela yesterday. Surprisingly the Rajans appeared to have a slight edge over the winners at lemons when they led 13-12. But after the short break the Antonians went on the rampage scoring as many as 27 points while the Rajans failed to add to their tally.

The Rajans were hopelessly outclassed both in the line outs and the scrums while they did well in the loose play to stop the Saints in the first half but they could not maintain the same tempo in the second half as they wilted under pressure put by the Antonians forwards.
With this defeat the Rajans face the prospect of being demoted to the lower division along with Prince of Wales unless there is a change in the tournament rules.

Highlight of the match was the blazing 90 metre run by Antonian winger Dilum Jayaweera to score by the left corner flag. The try scorers for St. Anthony’s were flanker Roshan Roche (2), winger Dilum Jayaweera (2), scrum half Dinesh Liyanage (1), centre Samith Dananaya (1) and winger Iranga Ariyapala (1). Full back Tharindu Chanaka added the extra points to two of the tries. The Rajans scored through lock forward Buwaneka Udangamuwa (1) and winger Lochana Ekanayake while fly half Rochana Hettiarachchi converted the penalty.


Peterites drub Wesley 50/13 on way to title

St. Peter’s finally could begin with their celebrations as schools rugby league champions of the 2010 season when they continued their unblemished record with a resounding 50-13 win against Wesley in a President’s Trophy Singer Schools Division I A rugby league match played at Bambalapitiya yesterday.
Though the Peterites held on to a marginally retrievable 17-8 lead after the first half they went on to add further 33 points which was made up by eight tries and five conversions. Wesley in reply scored through two tries and a penalty.
Skipper and No.8 Keith Gurusinghe and centre Dhanushka Ranjan scored two tries each for St. Peter’s while prop Steven Nelson, fullback Srinath Perera, centre winger Sandun Herath and fly half Bhanuka Nanayakkara went on to score a try each. Scrum half Rizwan Meedin converted five of the tries. For Wesley skipper and centre Azmil Omar and centre Randika Tillekaratne scored the tries while the solitary penalty was converted by Omar himself. Referee: AC Tennakoon - [MNA]


Azhar to contest Badminton President post

CHENNAI: With the court refusing to issue a stay order, the Badminton Association of India will hold its elections on Sunday in which former cricketer Mohd Azharuddin faces the tough challenge of unseating the long-serving VK Verma as the body’s President.
The Azharuddin camp had approached the sessions court in Andhra Pradesh’s Rangareddy district seeking a stay on the election but their plea was rejected after a three-hour argument.
Azharuddin’s candidature has raised quite a furore with Verma initially claiming that the ex-captain was ‘ineligible’ to contest as he was serving a life ban for alleged match-fixing. – [PTI]


Who is to blame?

A question mark hangs over the lights installed at the Rangiri Dambulla Stadium where the Asia Cup matches are scheduled to be played from June 15-25.
The stadium requires the replacement for its 28 bulbs before the start of the tournament and installation of them takes nearly 18 hours. Also only 25 bulbs are available for replacement and the participating team’s are at a loss who is responsible for this lapse because they are unable to hold proper practice sessions under lights ahead of the tournament.


India wins T20 opener

HARARE: India comfortably beat Zimbabwe by six wickets on Saturday in the first of two Twenty20 internationals between the sides. The visitors won the toss at Harare Sports Club and elected to bowl first, with the decision proving correct after Zimbabwe were reduced to just 111-9.
But an upset looked briefly on the cards when India slumped to 48-4 in reply, before Virat Kohli (26 n.o.) and Yusuf Pathan (37 n.o.) saw the visitors home. All-rounder Pathan hit three sixes and two boundaries in his 24-ball knock, while Kohli notched his score off 21 balls as India won with five overs to spare.
Scores: Zimbabwe 111-9 (20) (C Chibhabha 40, C Ervine 30, V Kumar 3/24, A Dinda 2/27, P Ojha 2/11)
India 112-4 (15) (S Raina 28, V Kohli 26 n.o., Y Pathan 37 n.o., C Mpofu 2/31, R Price 2/24)


Steyn, Morkel rout Windies

PORT OF SPAIN: South African fast bowler became the fourth fastest bowler to complete 200 Test wickets as he reduced West Indies to 84-9 on the third day of the first Test at Port of Spain, Trinidad on Saturday.
Steyn took 5 for 17 playing in his 39th Test as the West Indies batting crumbled with only two batsmen getting into double figures. South Africa made 352 in their first innings.
Scores: South Africa 352;
West Indies 84-9 (44) (S Chanderpaul 26, N Deonarine 29, D Steyn 5/17, M Morkel 4/19)