Online edition of India's National Newspaper
Tuesday, Mar 01, 2005

About Us
Contact Us
Sport
News: Front Page | National | Tamil Nadu | Andhra Pradesh | Karnataka | Kerala | New Delhi | Other States | International | Opinion | Business | Sport | Miscellaneous | Engagements |
Advts:
Classifieds | Employment |

Sport - Cricket Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Uphill task for South

By Our Sports Reporter

INDORE, FEB. 28. Reigning champion North looks set to make it to the final of the Duleep Trophy cricket championship. North takes on South Zone in the last league match at the MPCA Stadium here on Tuesday.

With an outright win against West in Lucknow, North is in the drivers' seat, while South has an uphill task of winning with a bonus point to edge ahead of the other two contenders.

A full-strength North, led by Virender Sehwag, appears intimidating given that it has five players who would start against Pakistan in the Indo-Pak tour opener in Mohali on March 8.

Anil Kumble has decided to take rest while South captain, Rahul Dravid, has opted out to attend to a domestic matter. South will now be lead by V. V. S. Laxman, who is under pressure to perform after a relatively lean patch this season. R. Ramkumar and Y. Venugopal Rao are also out as they appear for the Board President's XI in the three-day warm match against touring Pakistan, in Dharmashala.

"It's a crucial match for South but the situation is such that our team looks too weak against the full-strength North,'' said the South Zone coach Sharad Pednekar.

Though most of the South players arrived here on Saturday night, it was only on Monday afternoon that the team had its practice session. Laxman was missing but the team management said he was expected to arrive later in the evening.

Full strength North

For North, besides Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Ashish Nehra, Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh, make the defending champion the team to bet for.

"The boys who have been named in the India squad are all here which speaks of their commitment for the team,'' said North's coach Surinder Khanna. Besides getting to test their strengths, the match should provide Harbhajan Singh an opportunity to get into the competitive mode.

Harbhajan returned from Australia last week after attending a camp where his bowling action was put to test. For Harbhajan, this match becomes even more crucial as he is short of match practice.

As regards to the pitch, as the North's coach put it, bowlers will have to work hard on it. "It is not a pitch where toss could prove vital, but looks could be deceptive,'' he added.

But going by the fact that all four matches so far have produced outright results, the toss would put the winning skipper under pressure.

The teams:

North Zone: Virender Sehwag (capt.), Dinesh Mongia, Gautam Gambhir, Aakash Chopra, Amit Bhandari, Ashish Nehra, Yuvraj Singh, Ravneet Ricky, Harbhajan Singh, Ashok Thakur, Sangram Singh, Manvinder Bisla, Pankaj Dharmani, Amit Mishra and Joginder Sharma. Coach: Surinder Khanna.

South Zone: V. V. S. Laxman (capt.), Anirudh Singh, Rowland Barrington, S. Sriram, Dinesh Karthick, Sunil Joshi, R. Jesuraj, S. Sharath, Robin Uthappa, R. Vinay Kumar, L. Balaji, S. Badrinath, M. R. Srinivas, Swapnil Asnodkar. Coach: Sharad Padnekar.

Umpires: Ashok Saheba, Tej Handu. Third umpire: Subroto Banerjee.

Printer friendly page  
Send this article to Friends by E-Mail

Sport

News: Front Page | National | Tamil Nadu | Andhra Pradesh | Karnataka | Kerala | New Delhi | Other States | International | Opinion | Business | Sport | Miscellaneous | Engagements |
Advts:
Classifieds | Employment | Updates: Breaking News |

Sportstar Subscribe


News Update


The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | The Hindu Images | Home |

Copyright 2005, The Hindu. Republication or redissemination of the contents of this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of The Hindu