Galle: The rain gods decided that the Indian bowling quartlet needed a day’s rest after an almost five hour long beating at the hands of Sangakarra and Parnavitana on Day 1. Srilanka seems to be in a very strong position at 2/256, however, barring an un-foreseen collapse of the strong Indian batting linup, on this pitch that has nothing to offer for the bowlers yet, a boring draw looms largely over the game. Be ready for lot more of run-grinding and statistic pile up over the next few days. I wish they had made this track a bit livelier so that Murali can show his exciting magic for one last time.
Headingly: Australia has some injury scares ahead of the 2nd test match with North and Hilfenhaus missing their training sessions, however, the team has enough bench strength to cover up for them, in-case they miss out. Pakistan Gear up for the same game under a new young leader Salman Butt. Pakistan bowlers already have their task cut out to restrict the touted Aussie line up, this time around, their batsman need to step up and put up a better show.
Come-back: The Pakistan tour of Australia at the neutral venue is turning out to be as exciting as expected. PCB has made their first sensible decision in a long time by asking Salman Butt to lead the test team, but then even a broken clock is right twice in a day. Shoaib Malik, who was banned for a year in the light of in-fighting created within the side, would be back tomorrow, just after missing a solitary test. Mohd. Yousuf made an much expected announcement that he’s now available for selection for the national side, just a few months after announcing his yet another retirement. May be, retirement in Pakistan Cricket means just a few weeks of Sabbatical leave.
Banned by PCB: There have been cricket boards in the past like: Australia, England, India, and West-Indies who have handed out bans to its players for not adhering to the board’s policy and sticking to those bans. PCB on the other hand thinks that a ban means: “we are so sorry, we made a mistake, thus we are revoking your ban and would like you to come back and join us, we also have a captaincy to offer, if you are interested, and if you are not interested we may even force you to lead”
The Others: Bangladesh has successfully lowered the bar yet again, by managing to not win any of their ODI series in England (1-2), Ireland (1-1), or Scotland (Match abandoned).
-Nikhil Sharad Jadhav