Raul to the rescue as Schalke end home win drought

Raul to the rescue as Schalke end home win drought

BERLIN: Former Spanish international great Raul scored a brace as Bundesliga strugglers Schalke 04 finally ended their jinx at the Veltins-Arena with a 3-0 home defeat of St. Pauli on Friday.
Schalke finished runners-up last season but have made a disastrous start to the 2011 campaign with one win in their first 10 games, prior to this victory, leaving them hovering precariously around the relegation zone.
Raul moved to the German side in July on a 2-year deal after making

Tauqir surprised by PCB’s decision to sack employees over 60

LAHORE: Former PCB Chairman Lt. General (retd) Tauqir Zia has expressed his surprise at the decision of PCB to retire regular employees above the age of 60 years.
The PCB yesterday terminated the services of its regular employees including Chief Operating Officer Wasim Bari. A PCB official said the board’s HR committee informed around 15 employees that their services were no longer required as they had become ineligible under the service rules act.
“The service rules

Smith, Waqar praise exciting one-day cricket

DUBAI: South African skipper Graeme Smith and Pakistan team coach Waqar Younis both described the fourth one-day match between their two teams as having been exciting and good for 50-over form of cricket.
Pakistan pulled off a sensational one-wicket win on the penultimate delivery of the match after being set a challenging 275-run target on Friday, to level the five-match series at 2-2 and set an intriguing fifth match for Monday. Smith, whose 98 was the cornerstone for the South

Nazir blitz sets up easy first win for Pakistan

LAHORE: Pakistan team led by Shoaib Malik lived up to expectations as they overpowered arch-rivals India to win the opener of the Hong Kong Super Sixes event at the Kowloon Cricket Club on Saturday.
Pakistan swept to a 22-run victory over India to be well-placed in the preliminary round Sobers Group on the opening day of the US$150,000 tournament which saw more than three-quarters of the programme cancelled due to rain.
“It’s always good to start with a win,” a website

Defiant Ryder, Williamson thwart India

AHMEDABAD: Jesse Ryder struck a remarkable 103 and shared a 194-run stand with debutant Kane Williamson to defy world number one India on the third day of the first Test against New Zealand on Saturday.
Ryder struck 10 fours and a six in his 205-ball knock while Williamson was equally impressive in making 87 not out as New Zealand reached 331-5 at stumps at the Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad. That left the visitors 156 runs adrift of India’s first-innings 487.

Sri Lanka win first series in Australia

SYDNEY: Sri Lanka claimed their first-ever series success in Australia with a win against Ricky Ponting’s team in the rain-marred second one-day international at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Friday.
The Sri Lankans won by 29 runs under the Duckworth-Lewis method after several rain interruptions and followed their stunning one-wicket victory in the opening match in Melbourne on Wednesday.
Sri Lanka condemned Australia to a seventh straight international defeat in all forms

India in control in first New Zealand Test

AHMEDABAD: Tailender Harbhajan Singh struck a career-best 69 before India picked up two early wickets to put New Zealand under pressure on the second day of the first Test on Friday.
Harbhajan slammed three sixes and five fours in his 97-ball knock to steer India’s first innings to 487 after the hosts had been reduced to 412-8 on a deteriorating wicket at the Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad.
At stumps, New Zealand were 69-2, trailing the Indians by 418 runs with eight

Pakistan corruption probe gathers pace

LONDON: The probe into allegations that Pakistan cricketers accepted bribes for spot-fixing during the Lord’s Test against England gathered pace
on Friday as a second evidence file was passed to prosecutors.
Scotland Yard said evidence that there was a conspiracy to defraud bookmakers will be considered by the Crown Prosecution Service. Detectives interviewed four players under caution and arrested businessman Mazhar Majeed as part of the inquiry.
Majeed is accused of

Afridi sets record for most sixes in international cricket

NEW DELHI: Shahid Afridi set the new record of most sixes in international cricket by hitting his 353rd six off Johan Botha during his seven-run knock in the third one day international against South Africa.
The all-important blow came in his 371st innings of 370th international matches. Sri Lankan, Sanath Jayasuriya, who hit 352 sixes in in 649 innings of 583 international matches held the previous record.
Trivia for third ODI: South Africa recorded their smallest victory

IPL fights for its future amid scandals, confusion

NEW DELHI: The Indian Premier League revolutionised cricket when it burst onto the scene in 2008 with a high-octane blend of international star players, Twenty20 matches and Bollywood glamour.
But the money-spinning tournament faces an uncertain future with some observers predicting its fourth season, due to start in April, hangs in the balance.
The event has been hit by allegations of massive corruption, money-laundering and tax evasion, as well as secret deals to hide

Woods’ resurrection still ‘work in progress’

SHANGHAI: Tiger Woods said his efforts to regain his once-dominant form are a “work in progress” that he was taking one tournament at a time.
Woods recently employed the services of golfing instructor Sean Foley after splitting with his longtime swing guru Hank Haney in the wake of sex scandals that wrecked the former world number one’s marriage and ravaged his game.
The two are working on “totally different fundamentals and (a) totally different shift” in his swing, the

Djokovic cruises as Serbs savour future cup final

BASEL: Holder Novak Djokovic led the way with a 6-4, 6-2 defeat of recent training partner Ernests Gulbis as the bulk of Serbia’s Davis Cup squad made it to the second round of the Swiss Indoors Tuesday.
World number three Djokovic had practised last week in Geneva with the Latvian, with whom he grew up at tennis school in Munich, and used the fresh experience on court to roll to victory, his third of four in their series.
Gulbis was broken in the final game and ended his

Spurs, Benfica and Valencia relaunch last 16 bids

PARIS: Tottenham Hotspur, Benfica and Valencia relaunched their respective bids for a place in the lucrative last 16 of the Champions League with resounding wins in the fourth round of group games on Tuesday.
Spurs, who staged a remarkable comeback a fortnight ago in a 4-3 defeat away to Inter Milan, outclassed the defending champions 3-1 at White Hart Lane with another fine display of attacking football inspired by Welsh winger Gareth Bale.
Benfica still sit third in Group

Aisam improves on career-high ranking

LAHORE: Pakistan tennis star Aisam-ul-Haq Qurieshi has improved his international ranking as he reached the 17th position in the latest doubles ranking.
Their doubles world ranking also improved after they reached the final of St Petersburg Open in Russia. Aisam obtained 150 points from the 250 level tournament.
The pair of Bopanna and Aisam has clinched back the sixth position of the ATP teams ranking, which they had lost due to their early exit at the Moscow Open. With

M and M sweeten Sri Lanka’s day

MELBOURNE: Sri Lanka conjured a stunning one-wicket victory over Australia in their opening one-day international on Wednesday, powered by a record-breaking ninth wicket partnership between Angelo Mathews and Lasith Malinga.
Looking dead and buried at 107 for eight and chasing Australia’s 239 for eight in Melbourne, the Sri Lankans roared home on the back of a sensational 132-run stand off 110 balls from man-of-the-match Mathews and fast bowler Malinga. Sri Lanka’s astonishing

Sarfraz advises players to knock on COAS’ door

LAHORE: Former swing king Sarfraz Nawaz has asked the tainted trio to knock the door of the Court of Arbitration for Sports because he did not expect any favours from the ICC towards the Pakistani cricketers.
“When the suspended players have no confidence in the ICC, how can they expect a favourable decision when the final hearing is held,” a website quoted Nawaz as saying.
The International Cricket Council’s code of commission rejected the appeals of Salman Butt and

Aamer sure of a clean chit

LAHORE: Pakistan’s suspended fast bowler Muhammad Aamir is hopeful that he will be cleared of the spot-fixing charges when ICC’s full hearing will convene in the near future.
The ICC’s code of conduct commission, headed by Michael Beloff, upheld the trio’s suspensions after a two-day hearing in Dubai on Sunday. The innocence or guilt of the players will now be judged at an independent tribunal, the date of which is yet to be decided.
“All bowlers bowl no-balls and it can