Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 17th 2015 Contents A55
Saturday, October 17, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
ABU DHABI---A marathon knock of 263
by Alastair Cook gave England the lead
yesterday as the first test against Pakistan
headed toward a draw at the end of the
Cook became only the third batsman in
history to bat for more than 800 minutes
in an innings with his 528-ball knock that
lasted 836 minutes. The two players who
have played longer than him are Pakistan s
Hanif Mohammed (970 minutes against
the West Indies in Bridgetown in 1958) and
South Africa s Gary Kirsten (878 minutes
against England in Durban in 1999).
At the close of play, and England was
569-8, 46 ahead of Pakistan s first-innings
total of 523-8 declared.
"Our captain had led from the front there
and set an example for the rest of the series,"
England batsman Joe Root said. "It gives
some sort of a hope that we can go there
and get some sort of a result."
It was Cook s third double century in
test cricket, and his second highest after
the 294 he made against India in Birming-
ham in 2011. He survived two chances---
one on 147 on Thursday and then on 173
in the fourth over Friday morning when a
delivery from Wahab Riaz delivery cut back
and took his inside edge, but wicket-keeper
Sarfraz Ahmed dropped a difficult chance
diving low to his right.
Cook fell in the 191st over of the innings,
top-edging a sweep off Shoaib Malik to
Shan Masood at backward square leg. He
hit only 18 boundaries, which meant he ran
191 runs in the extremely hot conditions.
Wickets fell in a flurry toward the end,
with Ben Stoke (57) and Jos Buttler (23) also
falling along with Cook.
A spinner finally got a wicket when Malik
dismissed Stoke, who was bowled while
trying to give the bowler a charge. Buttler s
wicket was taken by Zulfiqar Babar in his
69th over of the inning.
England lost two wickets in the session
after lunch---Root departing 15 runs short
of a well-deserved century and Jonny
Bairstow for eight.
Riaz (3-116) was Pakistan s most suc-
cessful bowler, and his spell included one
late in the second session when he also
accounted for Bairstow and troubled Stokes
no end with his reverse swing.
"The ball was reversing both ways and
I was in my rhythm. I took full advantage
of it and I was trying to get the batsman
out all the time, even Ben Stokes, who was
quite lucky I thought," Riaz said. "Obviously,
the wicket is slow, but we are doing our
best to get the wickets."
The visitors did not lose a wicket in the
2 1/2-hour pre-lunch session---to cater for
a one-hour lunch break for Friday prayers---
and added 110 runs in the 33 overs. However,
it was slow going in the second session
with 26 overs yielding 68 runs.
Cook and Root put on 141 runs for the
fourth wicket, the third century partnership
of the inning.
Cook reached his 200 in 395 balls when
he whipped Riaz to the square leg for a
England needed 11 overs to get their first
boundary of the day, but once Cook swept
Babar for four, both batsman started to
open up a bit, with Root hitting drives and
pulling shots in making his 14th test fifty
in 83 balls. His 85 featured seven hits to
the fence, including an upper cut off a
bouncer from Riaz.
Pakistan has played seven test matches
at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium, winning four,
including the last two by massive margins
against Australia (356 runs) and New
Zealand (248 runs), and drawing the other
three. It won the only test match at the
stadium against England by 72 runs in 2012.
England captain Alastair
Cook in action during the
fourth day of first Test match
against Pakistan at Zayed
Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi,
United Arab Emirates,
yesterday. AP PHOTO
Zimbabwe batsman Mark Vermeulen
has been banned from all cricket by Zim-
babwe Cricket after it emerged that he
had engaged in a racist tirade on social
media during which he referred to black
Zimbabweans as "apes."
"Racism is abominable and there can be
no defence for it," said a statement released
by Zimbabwe Cricket. "Mark Vermeulen
has been banned from participating in all
cricket activities, after he owned up to
repulsive remarks that reflect racism, prej-
udice and plain ignorance. We find Ver-
meulen s Facebook comment distasteful
and unacceptable, particularly for a senior
sportsman who should have learned from
playing in Zimbabwe and abroad that there
is no place for racism in sport."
Vermeulen had posted his comment in
July, on a thread underneath an article post-
ed on Facebook about Prosper Utseya s
letter to the ZC Board, which alleged that
racism persisted in Zimbabwean cricket.
Though Vermeulen subsequently deleted
the comment, a screenshot eventually made
its way into the public sphere, again on
ESPNcricinfo has seen the screenshot of
the comment, which talked of "white peo-
ple" having "fxxxd up the apes lives". "If
we... had never educated them, Prosper
wouldn t be having these problems," it said.
As the reaction to his comment gathered
steam online, it is believed that some mem-
bers of Vermeulen s domestic franchise,
Mashonaland Eagles, insisted they would
boycott any team with Vermeulen in it. The
administration of the franchise met today
to decide how to respond, and this evening
it was confirmed that Vermeulen has been
banned from all cricket activities by Zim-
Vermeulen had issued a public statement,
which was reproduced in local newspapers
today, and which he called an apology. In
it, Vermeulen said that he had apologised
personally to Utseya and that "he accepted
"I know my comments were over the top
and I apologise to all that I have offended,"
continued Vermeulen s statement. "But as
a cricketer, it s how our minds work... It
was not meant in a menacing way. It was
just a chirp that often happens out on the
field of play and as men, you take the blow
on the chin and get on with the game."
MADRID---Fifa is analysing a Brazilian club s claim
of irregularities involving Neymar s transfer to
Barcelona two years ago.
Santos filed a complaint to the governing body
and "the matter is currently pending and being inves-
tigated," Fifa said yesterday.
Santos claims the Brazilian player and his agents
broke the terms of Neymar s contract by starting
negotiations with Barcelona without the Brazilian
club s consent.
If Fifa rules in Santos favor it could potentially
lead to sanctions against Barcelona and Neymar.
Santos said it s not trying to cause problems for
its former star, only attempting to "protect its rights
and seek reparation of damages."
The Brazilian club said it lodged its formal complaint
in May, and only released a statement on the matter
now because of Brazilian media reports that said the
club was demanding the player s suspension for six
"Santos has not made any additional request to
Fifa (demanding a suspension)," the club said, adding
that it s up to the governing body to decide on an
eventual punishment to Neymar or Barcelona.
Fifa said it wouldn t comment "nor to give an esti-
mation of the time line" of the case.
Santos claims it was never told about a 2011 pay-
ment of 10 million euros ($11.4 million) made by
Barcelona to the company owned by Neymar s father
to guarantee the rights to sign the talented young-
Santos said that although the player was authorized
to talk to clubs, nobody ever informed the Brazilian
club that a deal with Barcelona was reached at the
Another 30 million euros ($34.3 million) was paid
directly to Neymar s father s company after the deal
was finalized in 2013, and Santos was paid about 17
million euros ($19.4 million).
Former Barcelona president Sandro Rosell eventually
resigned amid allegations he hid the real cost of Ney-
mar s transfer in false contracts.
Neymar s father told Brazilian media on Wednesday
that "Santos is going against its idol."
"We will defend Neymar against Santos if needed,"
Neymar da Silva said. "It seems Santos is looking
for more money."
Neymar s father has always claimed that Barcelona
never broke Fifa rules that prevent teams from luring
players under contract with other clubs. He said
Santos knew about the deal and the money was paid
to his company, not directly to Neymar.
He said that if the player changed his mind and
decided to go to another club, or if something hap-
pened to keep him from signing with Barcelona, he
would have had to return the money to the Spanish
The deal came before Barcelona and Santos faced
each other in the final of the Club World Cup in
December 2011. Neymar was not a factor in the match
and Barcelona won 4-0. (AP)
PARIS---Paris Saint-Germain winger Angel Di
Maria has been left out of the squad for today s
French league game at Bastia.
The three-time defending champions did not give
any reason for Di Maria s absence, which comes on
top of a growing injury list including Marco Verratti,
David Luiz, Kevin Trapp and Presnel Kimpembe.
PSG coach Laurent Blanc will also be without the
suspended Blaise Matuidi.
After nine league matches, PSG remains unbeaten
and has a five-point lead over second-place Angers.
PSG hosts Real Madrid on Wednesday in the Cham-
pions League group stage. (AP)
FIFA analysing claim
of irregularities in
Di Maria left out of PSG
squad for Bastia game
Vermeulen banned due to racist 'apes' comment
Cook hits 263 as England
moves toward draw vs Pakistan
Pakistan 1st Innings 523-8 declared
England 1st Innings
A Cook c Shan Masood b Shoaib Malik ..............263
M Ali c Sarfraz Ahmed b Imran Khan ......................35
I Bell c Mohammed Hafeez b Wahab Riaz .........63
M Wood b Wahab Riaz ............................................................4
J Root c Sarfraz Ahmed b Rahat Ali .........................85
J Bairstow lbw b Wahab Riaz ............................................8
B Stokes b Shoaib Malik .......................................................57
J Buttler c Asad Shafiq b Zulfiqar Babar ..............23
A Rashid not out .............................................................................6
S Broad not out ................................................................................0
Extras: (7b, 5lb, 3w, 10nb) ..................................................25
TOTAL: (for eight wickets) ................................569
Fall of wickets: 1-116, 2-281, 3-285, 4-426, 5-
443, 6-534, 7-549, 8-563,
Still to bat: James Anderson.
Bowling: Rahat Ali 26.3-1-73-1, Imran Khan 25-
6-72-1, Zulfiqar Babar 70-17-180-1, Wahab Riaz
33-3-116-3 (3w, 10nb), Asad Shafiq 7-0-19-0,
Shoaib Malik 35-4-97-2.
Umpires: Bruce Oxenford, Australia, and Paul
TV umpire: S Ravi, India.
Match referee: Andy Pycroft, Zimbabwe.
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