Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 5th 2013 Contents A64
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt May 5, 2013
Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) will
hold a meeting next week to
decide whether it should make a
request to the BCCI to release
some of the under-performing
Sri Lankan cricketers in the ongo-
ing IPL so that they can partake
in preparations for the Champi-
ons trophy. Nine of the ten Sri
Lankan players playing in the IPL
are part of Sri Lanka's 15-member
squad for the Champions trophy.
"We have been discussing this
issue recently but have not taken
a firm decision," Nishantha
Ranatunga, the SLC secretary, said.
Sri Lanka have arranged a lim-
ited-overs triangular tournament
at Pallekele as preparation for the
Champions trophy in England.
The three teams in the preparatory
tournament, Sri Lanka Rest (team
selected for England), SLC Com-
bined XI and Sri Lanka 'A', are
due to play a total of seven fifty-
over matches from May 12 to 20.
"We know a lot of them are not
faring well in the IPL, and we are
worried about their form,"
Ranatunga said. "We thought it
would be better for these players
to return home and play in the
50-over triangular rather than sit
on the bench without playing a
match in the IPL."
Former Sri Lanka captain and
current captain of Delhi Daredevils
Mahela Jayawardene is the only
Sri Lanka player to have appeared
in all the matches for his IPL
team. The others have either been
dropped from their respective
If anyone thought the support
act had delusions of grandeur,
they can think again. There is no
hubris from Brendon McCullum
as his New Zealand team start
their tour of England. He knows
that, as captain of the team cur-
rently rated No. 8 in the Test
rankings and with a record of
five losses from their last six
Tests in England, they are not in
a position to make demands. He
knows the Test series against
England will be viewed, by many,
as an aperitif before the Ashes.
And he has no complaints.
McCullum feels it is an achiev-
able goal, too. The potential in
their batting, in particular, may
be as high as any New Zealand
team in history, while they out-
bowled a much-vaunted England
attack in the recent series in Eng-
land. McCullum feels his side have
the potential to be better even
than the New Zealand side of the
1980s containing the likes of Mar-
tin Crowe and Richard Hadlee.
And that's even before the
return of Jesse Ryder who, barely
a month after he was assaulted,
is well on the road to recovery
despite the lung damage inflicted
in the attack. "Jesse's gone to the
gym for the first time," McCullum
said, before smiling. "Not the first
time ever. I spoke to him before
went to India and he's getting
there. He's getting there."
McCullum feels the change in
New Zealand's fortunes came
when they were thrashed by South
Africa who won both Tests in the
series by vast margins - an innings
and 27 runs and then an innings
and 193 runs - that McCullum
feels it was a clear case of the
darkest hour coming before the
dawn and felt the improvements
were obvious in the series against
McCullum dismisses any
chance of keeping wicket in the
Test series - "absolutely not," he
said - or remaining in England
after the Champions Trophy to
play county cricket - "No, no, no,"
he said, a little too effusively. "I
have two months off at the end
of this series and I'm going to put
a bit of time and energy back into
But McCullum could be forgiv-
en some weariness. He has played
in every one of New Zealand's last
75 Tests and, as a key man in their
limited-overs teams, carries a
heavy burden that captaincy can
only have increased.
Dean Brownlie and BJ Watling hit half-centuries
as the New Zealanders recovered from losing their
Test openers cheaply against a weakened Derbyshire
attack on the opening day of their tour at Derby.
Both Hamish Rutherford and Peter Fulton went
in the first 13 overs but Brownlie and Watling shared
a century stand before the tourists declared on 289
for five with Mark Footitt taking four for 65.
That gave the touring bowlers 12 overs before
stumps and Neil Wagner broke through just before
the close when he bowled the in-form Chesney
Hughes for nine to leave Derbyshire on 24 for one.
The New Zealanders went into the game with no
injury worries but left out skipper Brendon McCullum
and batsman Ross Taylor who had both arrived in
the country in the last 24 hours after playing in the
Indian Premier League.
Derbyshire rested their frontline bowling attack
but put the Kiwis in after rain delayed the start by
15 minutes and there was enough assistance from
the pitch and the overhead conditions to make life
awkward for the batsmen.
Alasdair Evans bowled an impressive first spell on
his first-class debut for Derbyshire and the Scottish
seamer was rewarded with the wicket of Rutherford
who had his middle stump plucked out by some late
movement in the 10th over of a breezy morning.
Fulton was starting to impose himself when he
played across the line at Footitt and was lbw three
overs later which gave Derbyshire supporters the
chance to welcome back Martin Guptill who had
helped the county win promotion last season.
Brownlie was severe on anything short as he com-
pleted a 73-ball 50 which contained nine fours and
Watling was strong off the back foot on his way to
a 86-ball half-century.
SL mull over recalling out-of-form IPL players
sides due to poor form, to provide
balance to the side, or simply were
unable to play in Chennai due to polit-
ical tensions. Angelo Mathews, the Sri
Lanka captain, stepped down as the
captain of Pune Warriors early this
Ajantha Mendis is the only Sri
Lankan player in the IPL who is not
part of the Champions trophy squad.
Our ranking hurts --- McCullum
prop up Kiwis
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