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Wednesday, January 08, 2003

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National Cricket League
Ctg 231 for 5

Sports Reporter, The New Nation

Chittagong Division finished day-2 play with 231 runs for the loss of 5 wickets in the 2003 Ispahani Mirzapur Tea 4th National League at Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium yesterday. Opener Aftab Ahmad made 129 before being bowled by Naimur caught by Fahim. Nazim Uddin scored 36 while Nafis Iqbal 24.

At stumps Akram Khan and Sabbir Khan were batting with 24 and duck respectively.

For Dhaka Division, Naimur Rahman took two wickets giving away 47 runs but it was Anowar Hossain who stole the limelight grabbing 3 for 40 runs only.

Earlier Dhaka Division resumed the second day play with their overnight score of 316 for 8 and finally landed at 376 without further damage. Naimur Rashid and Mosaddek Hossain remained unbeaten with 57 and 37 runs respectively. Innings extras were 24.

The third day's play starts today at the same ground in the morning.

The second match of the National Cricket League has been going on between Sylhet Division and Barisal Division at Fatullah Cricket Stadium, N. Ganj after the last ball of the day.

Sylhet Division reached 201 runs for the loss of 8 wickets. Four of them were the prey of the umpires leg before wicket decisions. Opener Parvez Ahmed scored 84-the day's sparkling story and his partner Mabud Shishir made 34 before being out LBW.

Nadif Chowdhury of Barisal Div. was the highest wicket collector with 4 for 54 runs.

Earlier Barisal resuming at 167 for 6 landed at 347 losing 9 wickets in stipulatd 100 overs. Prosenjit hit 93 and Anisur 28 while Mr. Extras 30.

Imran Rahim captured 3 wickets giving away 66 runs.

The third day's play begins today at the same venue.

Stage set for SAF soccer

Sports Reporter, The New Nation

The third edition of the South Asian Federation Football Championship is about to start from January 10 in the city. Bangladesh Football Federation has taken a colourful decision of ornamenting the opening day ceremony with the following programmes.

On 10/01/2003 at BNS, Dhaka

At 3-30 PM: Prime Minister Begum Khaleda Zia will enter the stadium through the torch gate escorted by the eavalry.

At 3-33 PM: The Prime Minister will take her seat.

At 3-36 PM: Exhibition of national flags of the participating 8 teams by the Airforce helicopter unit.

At 3.45 PM: March past

At 4-03 PM: Display by the students of Jessore School(s).

At 4-10 PM: Presentation of SAFF music by the travelling coach.

At 4-15 PM: Prime Minister will declare the meet open.

Meanwhile, twenty footballers and six officials will represent holders India in the ensuing SAF Football Tournament scheduled to be held later this week.

The footballers are:

1. R D Ghosh, 2. Mr Suresh, 3. S Venkatesh, 4. Renedy P Singh, 5. S Chakraborty, 6. A D Cunha, 7. B Ashim, 8. Naseem Akhter, 9. Debojit Ghosh, 10. Verendra Singh, 11. J P Anchery, 11. S Fernandes, 13. R Fernandes, 14. Lawrence, 15. Sameer Naik, 16. A Kumar, 17. J Alberto, 18. I M Vijayan, 19. Harvinder Singh, 20. A Yadav.

The officials are:

1. Mr N K Bhatia- leader of the delegates, 2. Mr Stephen Constantine- chief coach, 3. Mr D Mukherjee- Manager, 4. Mr Ananta Kumar Ghosh- Assistant Manager, 5. Mr Aloke Mukherjee- Assistant Coach, 6. Mr Pronob Bhattacharjee- Team doctor.

Maldives and Bhutanee football teams arrived here yesterday (Tuesday) to participate in the eight-nation 3rd SAF Football Championship beginning January 10 at the Bangabandhu National Stadium.

The Maldives team reached yesterday in the early hours while Bhutanese team arrived in the morning. Earlier, Sri Lankan team arrived on Monday.

The three foreign teams made their practices yesterday at the BUET ground and Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.

Holders India and their old foe Pakistan are expected to be here today (Wednesday).

A partial team of Afghanistan with six booters playing in Germany will also arrive today. The rest of the Afghan players have already left Kabul for New Delhi en route to Dhaka.

Nepal will be the last foreign team to arrive in Dhaka on Thursday (January 9).

Sri Lanka, Maldives and Bhutan teams are now residing at Grand Azad Hotel on temporary basis. They will check in Hotel Sheraton today (Wednesday).

Bangladesh captain eyes the cup

Kottan rates India higher

Sports Reporter, The Independent

National football coach George Kottan is hopeful about placing hosts Bangladesh into the final of the 3rd SAFF Football Championships.

Bangladesh, who never have won the trophy in previous two attempts, finished runners-ups in the last edition in Goa but there would be more demand from the home crowd this time.

"I believe that my team have every ability to play in the final. Then anything can happen. A final match of any tournament is different, it's anybody's game," Austrian coach of the Bangladesh football team told this after the team's Tuesday's morning practice session at BKSP, Savar.

Kottan's target remains to make a room in the final of the eight-nation regional soccer tournament, which starts January 10, and he rated the Indian team as the favourites. India won both the previous versions in Kathmandu and in Goa but this time, they will miss the services of their star footballer Baichung Bhutia.

Bangladesh, on the other hand, picked their best possible 20 players, the squad announced also on Tuesday.

Kottan said that though he has no idea about other opponents, he had seen India in Korea, during the Asian Games.

According to him, the Indians are a much stronger side than Bangladesh in all respects. "They are physically sound and a very speedy team. In every department, they are superior."

Replying to a question, Kottan said that though the team will be without four regular players including captain Baichung, it would not change the scenario. "I think the Indian squad who will play here will be stronger than what I saw in Korea."

Kottan, who has been preparing the national team for about two months, wanted to play at least eight top level practice matches but got only three matches.

He said that the team played only three good preparation matches, two matches in Myanmar and another one against Sporting Bengal from UK at home.

He shrugged away the matches in the Jigme Dorji Wangchuk Memorial Gold Cup tournament in Bhutan which Bangladesh won. "They were fully fruitless, "It was a very poor tournament, it would have been better if the BFF could arrange more matches against the touring Sporting Bengal."

"The boys are not on top of their fitness but the current position is not also disagreeable. I hope they will be able to fight against the opponents," Kottan told about the fitness of the players.

Kottan is not satisfied with the performances of striker Alfaz and midfielder Arman. He said that they are looking very weak and they are inconsistent. They also do not look enough motivated but Moni has proved that he can work hard.

Kottan is very frustrated about the shooting power of the players.

"Unfortunately it's very woeful that the boys' shooting ability is poor. Basically, you can gear up a national player after a certain level, but it is not the time to teach these players the basics of the game. I think every player should come to this level being physically sound."

"Lack of sound body and health, the boys can not follow me hundred percent. What I suggest during the practice, they fail to respond."

"Any way, now the position is not on the top but also not bad at all," Kottan said.

Rajani Kanta Barman, captain of the Bangladesh team, is very optimistic about winning the trophy.

"We will play in home ground, so there is no alternative but to win the trophy. I think we had enough time to prepare for the tournament though it would have been better if we could play two or three practice matches more, said the country's premier centre-back.

Rajani told that the team have every ability to be the winners.

The Squad: Biplab Battacharjee, Aminul Haq, Mohammed Sujan, Rajani Kanta Barman, Feroz Mahmud Titu, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Hasan Al Mamun, Saiful Islam, Arman Mia, Mahmudul Hasan, Saifur Rahman Moni, Parvez Babu, Arif Khan Joy, Motiur Munna, Abdul Kayum Sentu, Mehdi Hassan Ujjal, Ariful Kabir Farhad, Alfaz Ahmed and Rokonuzzaman Kanchan.

Standbys: Ritu, Faisal Mahmood, Titumir and Milon.

Officials: Shawkat Ali Khan Jahangir (team leader), Sayeed Hassan Kanan (manager), Amirul Islam Babu (assistant manager), George Kottan (coach), Mosharraf Badal (goalkeeper's coach) and Mahfuzullah Chistee (team doctor).

Sylhet in trouble

Ctg ride on Aftab ton

Sports Reporter, The Independent

A hurricane century by Aftab Ahmed helped Chittagong Division give a solid reply to defending champions Dhaka's big total in their four-day match of the Ispahani Mirzapur Tea 4th National Cricket League on Tuesday.

In reply to Dhaka's first innings total of 376 for eight in stipulated 100 overs, league leaders Chittagong reached 231 for five at stumps on second day at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium. Chittagong, still 145 runs behind, have 50 overs remaining to take a lead in the first innings and secure their final berth.

In a must win situation, Dhaka resumed on 316-8 and Mosaddek Hossain Rubel's quickfire 37 propelled their way to rattle 60 runs in 50 deliveries without any damage.

The start of the day was delayed by two hours due poor visibility and it must have frustrated the home side who struggling to book a place in the final.

The delay however, did not restrict Neeyamur Rashid Rahul, overnight 39, complete his half century. He ended on 57 not out, featuring two fours and a six in 105 balls. Rubel cracked four boundaries inclusive of two sixes in his undefeated 37.

Promoted to open the innings with Nafis Iqbal, Aftab suffered a double blow when in-form Nafis and one-down Azam Iqbal departed on the same score of 60.

But youngster Aftab, who smashed 129 off just 117 balls in an exciting innings on a very cold day, added 129 runs for the third wicket with Nazimuddin, who contributed 36 from a patient 93-ball supporting role.

Aftab, who batted less than three hours, sent the ball 15 times into the fence and one over it to complete his hundred in only 85 balls. He cracked two more boundaries and one six before being caught by Fahim Muntasir Sumit off Dhaka skipper Naimur Rahman Durjoy. He dominated the Chittagong essay so much that the scoreboard read 189-3 when he was finally sent back.

As it so often happens after a long partnership, Nazimuddin quickly departed in addition of nine runs to the total.

Chittagong later lost Faisal Hossain Dickens but veteran Akram Khan was still there on 24, made of 29 deliveries.

Brief Scores

Dhaka 1st innings: 376-8 in 100 overs (RH Sumon 30, Jahangir 38, Mridul 33, Bulbul 2, Halim 41, Durjoy 39, Sajjad 15, Sumit 60, Rahul 57*, Rubel 37*, extras 24, Tarek Aziz 2-87, Ashiq 1-43, Ahsanullah 4-97, Sabbir 1-97).

Chittagong 1st innings: 231-5 in 50 overs (Nafis 24, Aftab 129, Azam 0, Nazim 36, Akram 24*, Dickens 12, Sabbir 0*, extras 6, Anwar Munir 3-40, Durjoy 2-47).

SYLHET-BARISAL

Despite a superb start, Sylhet ran into trouble against Barisal when they slumped to 201 for eight at close of second day's play at Fatullah Stadium.

Sylhet captain Parvez Ahmed, who scored 84, put on 113 runs for the opening stand with Shishir (34) after Barisal ended their first innings on 347 for nine in 100 overs.

But the collapse began soon as Sylhet, form a comfortable 132-1, lost seven wickets within the space of 47 runs.

Parvez was the third man to be dismissed, having hit nine fours in his 168-ball knocks.

Nadif Chowdhury, who made 51 in the Sylhet innings, was the wrecker in chief grabbing 4-54 from 23 overs. Barisal's Joy, who was 89 not out overnight in the side's 290-7 on the previous day, added four runs to his individual score in the morning.

Brief Scores

Barisal 1st innings: 347-9 in 100 overs (Imran 22, Sadik 9, Nayan 59, Shaown 15, Shyamol 23, Joy 93, Kamal 11, Rajan 6, Nadif 51*, Anis 28, extras 30, Nayeem 1-69, Nasir 1-53, Lalu 3-66, Rajin 1-48).

Sylhet 1st innings: 201-8 in 67.2 overs (Parvez 84, Shishir 34, Tushar 7, Nahid 18, Rajin 13, Kabi 2, Rana 5, Nayeem 9*, Ejaj 1, Lalu 14*, extras 14, Anis 1-39, Kamal 1-28, Nadif 4-54, Rajan 1-28).

Young Bhutan want exposure

Sports Reporter, The Independent

Kharg Bahadur Basnat, general secretary of Bhutan Football Federation who arrived Dhaka yesterday with the Bhutan team, said that their target is to gain experience from SAFF Football Championships.

Basnat, 47, who played in Dhaka football league for Mohammedan Sporting Club in 1986, said that football is the most popular game in Bhutan but they have no complete stadium in the country.

In the 20-member squad full of young and promising players, they have five players from the Under-19 team. Three of them are likely to be fielded in the first eleven, the former national captain of Bhutan told.

Basnat said that the team captain, Tshering, who plays as a libero, and striker Dorjy are of outstanding calibre.

The Bhutan team, who are 199 in the FIFA rankings, are under the supervision of Dutch coach Henk Walk.

"Henk Walk has been looking after the team for only three months. I think the team is improving under his instruction," said the former national hero of Bhutan who first played in Dhaka during the 1985 SAF Games and earned immediate fame.

Basnat thinks that Bangladesh are the favourites in the tournament, though the Indian team are also a very strong. "But the home advantage will speak for Bangladesh," he added.

School cricket

Sports Reporter, The Independent

Dolairpar High School, Rayer Bazar High School, Islami Adarsha High School, Hammadia High School and Shapla Kindergarten won their respective matches in the Dhaka City-zone qualifiers of the Standard Chartered Bank 21st National School Cricket Championships on Tuesday.

Dolairpar (280-10) beat Prime Laboratory High School (160-10) by 120 runs at Mirpur Outer Stadium, Rayer Bazar (211-10) beat BCS IR High School (143-10) by 68 runs at City Club ground, Islami Adarsha (180-8) beat MDC Model Institute (176-8) by two wickets at Uttara Friends Club ground, Hammadia (154-9) defeated Natunkuri Shikhaloya (150-10) by one wicket at Kalindi Krira Chakra ground and Shapla (92-0) posted an easy ten wickets victory over Shahidbagh High School (90-10) at East End Club ground.

Indian team for SAFF Tournament

UNB, Dhaka, The Independent

All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced its 26-member Indian national team on Tuesday for the ensuing third SAF Football Tournament begins here on January 10.

Team officials are : NK Bhatia (team leader), Stephen Constantine (Chief Coach), Debrata Mukherjee (Manager), Ananta Kumar Ghosh (Assistant Manager) Aloke Mukherjee (Assistant Coach) and Dr Pranab Bhatacharjee (Doctor).

Players are : Rajat Dastidar Ghosh, M Suresh, Renedy P Singh, Subhash Chakraborty, Alvito D' Cunha, Biswas Ashim, Naseem Akhtar, Debjit Ghosh, Abhishek Yadav, Virender Singh, Jo Paul Anchery, Selwyn Fernandes, Lawrence Clintax, Sameer Naik, Abhay Kumar, Jules Alberto , IM Vijayan and Harvinder Singh.

Brothers keep winning in Ctg soccer

Sports Correspondent, Chittagong

The Independent

Jan 6: Brothers Union maintained their unbeaten run in the Elite Paint Senior Division Football League defeating Customs Excise & VAT by 2-0 today at M A Aziz stadium.

Walid scored both the goals for Brothers one in each half.

In the other match, Chittagong Port Krira Samity earned two points recording a 5-4 win over Bakalia Krira Sangha in tie-breaker.

The match ended in a goalless draw during the regulation 80 minutes.

Alamgir, Belayet, Farid, Masud and Apu converted one each for Customs, while Tuhin, Afzal, Dablu and Sunity netted from the spot kick for Bakalia.

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