June 23rd, 2006

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Lankans snub injury excuse of England

Jayawardene
Sri Lanka cricket team’s captain says England should stop using injuries as an excuse for their poor form.

Without five first-choice players, including Michael Vaughan and Andrew Flintoff, hosts are 2-0 down in the five-match One-day International (ODI) series with three to play.

“It is easy to give excuses — we have a few injury problems of our own,” said Jayawardene, standing in as skipper for Marvan Atapattu, who has a back injury. “You have to play around with what you have got and get the job done.”

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Pakistan need best show to beat England, says Woolmer

Bob_Woolmer

Coach Bob Woolmer said on Thursday Pakistan need to be at their best to beat England in the forthcoming Test and One-day International (ODI) series against the number two ranked team in the world.

Woolmer also brushed aside the injury crises which have plagued the team for the series starting July 13 at Lord’s. “Injuries to some key players are not worrying and we know that, with whatever resources we have, we need to be at our best to beat England in England,” Woolmer said, three days before his team depart on the tough tour.

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New Zealand to play two Tests in coming season

New Zealand will play only two Test matches in the next domestic season, choosing instead to focus on One-day Internationals (ODIs) in the lead up to the World Cup starting in March.

The side will play Sri Lanka in two Tests as well as five ODIs and two Twenty20 matches against Sri Lanka in December and January, the New Zealand Cricket (NZC) said on Thursday.

Chief Executive NZC Martin Snedden said the decision not to play a third Test against Sri Lanka was partly in order to prepare players for the World Cup and because one of three Tests would have to be played in November when weather conditions were unreliable.

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Tendulkar tipped for return to top

tendulkarSachin Tendulkar has been tipped for a swift return to the top of world cricket after smashing his way to a century in his first match since undergoing shoulder surgery in March.

Suggestions the Indian legend is no longer quite the player he was looked wide of the mark as Tendulkar displayed his full range of shots on his way to a knock of 155 from 119 balls for Lashings World XI in a match against Cambridge University on Wednesday.

The innings included several perfectly executed shots, suggesting Tendulkar’s shoulder is in good shape, although the most he would say was that it is “getting better.”

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15-man squad to tour England; reports on Shoaib, Rana remain uncertain

Pakistan has decided to send a 15-man squad to England on June 25 as a question mark still remains on the fate of their injured pacers — Shoaib Akhtar and Rana Naved-ul-Hasan.

A Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) official told ‘The News’ on Thursday that the announcement on the 16th man for the tour of England would wait till further reports on the pace duo which are expected by next week.

“Pakistan would go to England on Sunday with 15 men because reports on both Shoaib and Rana are still inconclusive,” said Abbas Zaidi, PCB’s Director of Board Operations.

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