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The 2015 season of the Indian Premier League (abbreviated as IPL 8 or Pepsi IPL 2015) is the eighth season of the IPL. Kolkata Knight Riders are the defending champions having won the title in the 2014 season. The complete tournament is expected to be held across different cities in India unlike the previous season. The tournament was started on Wednesday, 8 April 2015 after the end of the 2015 Cricket World Cup. A total of 60 T20 matches will be held in the entire tournament. No matches will be held in Kolkata between April 12 and April 25 due to Municipal Elections.

Franchises retained 123 players 8th IPL season before moving into auction. The released players provided an option to register themselves for auction. 6 Players were transferred across teams before the auction took place. In the Pepsi IPL 2015 auction held on February 16 at Bangalore, Yuvraj Singh was sold to Delhi Daredevils for 16 crores INR, for a record bid in IPL auction history. A total of 67 players were sold out in the auction and all franchises spent total of 87.60 Crores to buy players.

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Saturday, January 24, 2009

BCCI pulling the strings on Sri Lanka tour deal

http://img.skysports.com/07/11/218x298/England_604031.jpg

There are more alleged smoking guns off the field than on it in the build up to India's second tour of Sri Lanka in five months.

As Sri Lanka’s collective shoddy batting in Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and then Pakistan where they were hammered in the first game drew heavy flak, a firing squad has metaphorically been patrolling the leafy confines of Sri Lanka Cricket. It has been taking aim at more than Mahela Jayawardene’s team after losses to Bangladesh and Pakistan and laboured efforts against Zimbabwe.

Not at all a great prognosis for a fifteen-day India tour of the island, starting in Dambulla in less than a week and barely five months after winning their last ODI series 3-2.

Seen as a stopgap event after the so-called controversial cancellation of their Pakistan tour, India's cricket wallahs agreed to the plaintive appeal from their pauper cousin Sri Lanka Cricket. In the end, they agreed to fete them with a tasty banquet as part of a ten-year funding exercise. Suggestions are though that the US$45-million bailout comes loaded with certain puppet strings.

After all, you should not expect a free lunch, or banquet, in such a tricky economic climate.

Anyway, no one either gets an invite to pay a courtesy visit to the island nation's president Mahinder Rajapakse in such pressing times as this while there is a civil war on the on the boil, unless there is some specific reason. Old SLC insiders say that N Srinivasan, secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, came with some special package deal and approval from friendly political sources in India and the Sri Lankan Government.

While there are accusations that Arjuna Ranatunga was ejected as the last Interim Committee chairman a month ago in a palace revolt that backfired, the BCCI's two-man presence in Colombo was full of praise for Sports Minister Gamini Lokuge and his style of behind the scenes management.

Only the revolt against Ranatunga also led to other interim members losing their positions on what was for a long time a board allegedly no longer consulted on SLC affairs. It had been run at times by autocratic one-man decree with an inner coterie help. Interim Committee members read about acceptance of tours and other events in the local media.

He is known to be strongly anti-Indian Premier League and as such not great pals with Lalit Modi but he is pro Indian Cricket League to spite the IPL commissioner.

He was strongly in favour of international cricket and dismissed the IPL format as supping on T20 style noodles. The three-year contracts with IPL franchises which Sri Lanka's top players signed, was disputed. It was here where his presence as SLC chairman was seen, in upper BCCI hierarchy, as a reason for failure to agree to an initial bail out deal of US$45-million.

His decision to accept an invitation from Pakistan for a patched up tour replacement for India even before the Indian Government ordered a cancellation of the tour did not go well with BCCI.

There was, too, the embarrassment that when tenders were called for renewed sponsorship on the team and it's clothing merchandise, there were none. The politics of the way the board was run was said to be at fault.

Source:cricketnext.in

BCCI pulling the strings on Sri Lanka tour deal

http://img.skysports.com/07/11/218x298/England_604031.jpg

There are more alleged smoking guns off the field than on it in the build up to India's second tour of Sri Lanka in five months.

As Sri Lanka’s collective shoddy batting in Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and then Pakistan where they were hammered in the first game drew heavy flak, a firing squad has metaphorically been patrolling the leafy confines of Sri Lanka Cricket. It has been taking aim at more than Mahela Jayawardene’s team after losses to Bangladesh and Pakistan and laboured efforts against Zimbabwe.

Not at all a great prognosis for a fifteen-day India tour of the island, starting in Dambulla in less than a week and barely five months after winning their last ODI series 3-2.

Seen as a stopgap event after the so-called controversial cancellation of their Pakistan tour, India's cricket wallahs agreed to the plaintive appeal from their pauper cousin Sri Lanka Cricket. In the end, they agreed to fete them with a tasty banquet as part of a ten-year funding exercise. Suggestions are though that the US$45-million bailout comes loaded with certain puppet strings.

After all, you should not expect a free lunch, or banquet, in such a tricky economic climate.

Anyway, no one either gets an invite to pay a courtesy visit to the island nation's president Mahinder Rajapakse in such pressing times as this while there is a civil war on the on the boil, unless there is some specific reason. Old SLC insiders say that N Srinivasan, secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, came with some special package deal and approval from friendly political sources in India and the Sri Lankan Government.

While there are accusations that Arjuna Ranatunga was ejected as the last Interim Committee chairman a month ago in a palace revolt that backfired, the BCCI's two-man presence in Colombo was full of praise for Sports Minister Gamini Lokuge and his style of behind the scenes management.

Only the revolt against Ranatunga also led to other interim members losing their positions on what was for a long time a board allegedly no longer consulted on SLC affairs. It had been run at times by autocratic one-man decree with an inner coterie help. Interim Committee members read about acceptance of tours and other events in the local media.

He is known to be strongly anti-Indian Premier League and as such not great pals with Lalit Modi but he is pro Indian Cricket League to spite the IPL commissioner.

He was strongly in favour of international cricket and dismissed the IPL format as supping on T20 style noodles. The three-year contracts with IPL franchises which Sri Lanka's top players signed, was disputed. It was here where his presence as SLC chairman was seen, in upper BCCI hierarchy, as a reason for failure to agree to an initial bail out deal of US$45-million.

His decision to accept an invitation from Pakistan for a patched up tour replacement for India even before the Indian Government ordered a cancellation of the tour did not go well with BCCI.

There was, too, the embarrassment that when tenders were called for renewed sponsorship on the team and it's clothing merchandise, there were none. The politics of the way the board was run was said to be at fault.

Source:cricketnext.in

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

England Spin Bowler Graeme Swann keen to focus on cricket

http://img.thesun.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00459/swann_280x390_459355a.jpg

England Bowler Graeme Swann believes the tour of the West Indies gives England an opportunity to put recent off-field troubles behind them.

England embark on a four-Test series later this month just weeks after Kevin Pietersen relinquished the captaincy and Peter Moores was sacked as coach. It was a tumultuous time for the team who are now led by Andrew Strauss but spin bowler Graeme Swann believes the tour represents a chance for the team to concentrate on playing.

Graeme Swann told Sky Sports News: "Whatever has gone on there is no point in dwelling on that. Things change. We have got to be united, we have got to get out there as a team and get people writing about the proper things, writing about the cricket rather than what is going on off the field."

He added: "We've just got to go out there and do what we do. We've got take wickets and score runs.

"In any form of the game that's all that matters to the players."

The Nottinghamshire bowler also backed Kevin Pietersen in the Caribbean, saying: "He seems very relaxed and chirpy, it is probably a bit of a weight off his shoulders to not have quite so much pressure on him and I'm convinced he is going to score thousands on this trip."

The 29-year-old agreed the team need to get back into a winning habit before the Ashes start in the summer.

"Completely," he continued. "The Ashes are on the horizon, I think everyone has got one eye on them.

"I think it is important we focus on this series because the momentum we had in 2005 before that Ashes helped the England team through that series.

"It's very important we win over here and win well - so we can go into the Ashes with our tails up."

England Spin Bowler Graeme Swann keen to focus on cricket

http://img.thesun.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00459/swann_280x390_459355a.jpg

England Bowler Graeme Swann believes the tour of the West Indies gives England an opportunity to put recent off-field troubles behind them.

England embark on a four-Test series later this month just weeks after Kevin Pietersen relinquished the captaincy and Peter Moores was sacked as coach. It was a tumultuous time for the team who are now led by Andrew Strauss but spin bowler Graeme Swann believes the tour represents a chance for the team to concentrate on playing.

Graeme Swann told Sky Sports News: "Whatever has gone on there is no point in dwelling on that. Things change. We have got to be united, we have got to get out there as a team and get people writing about the proper things, writing about the cricket rather than what is going on off the field."

He added: "We've just got to go out there and do what we do. We've got take wickets and score runs.

"In any form of the game that's all that matters to the players."

The Nottinghamshire bowler also backed Kevin Pietersen in the Caribbean, saying: "He seems very relaxed and chirpy, it is probably a bit of a weight off his shoulders to not have quite so much pressure on him and I'm convinced he is going to score thousands on this trip."

The 29-year-old agreed the team need to get back into a winning habit before the Ashes start in the summer.

"Completely," he continued. "The Ashes are on the horizon, I think everyone has got one eye on them.

"I think it is important we focus on this series because the momentum we had in 2005 before that Ashes helped the England team through that series.

"It's very important we win over here and win well - so we can go into the Ashes with our tails up."

Cricket News -Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik questions shoaib Akhtar's future

http://www.cricnews.in/wp-content/uploads/2008/05/shoaib-akhtar.jpg
Pakistan's captain Shoaib Malik called on national selectors to blood new players on Wednesday and questioned the continued inclusion of experienced fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar.

shoaib Akhtar returned to Pakistan's one-day side on Tuesday after a 14 month absence but bowled just 13 overs in the first two one-day internationals against Sri Lanka and proved expensive.

The pacer, who has appeared in 46 tests and 140 one-dayers, was given just six overs in Wednesday's 129-run defeat.

"We need a bowler who can bowl ten overs and also show commitment in the field for 50 overs," Malik said.

"And I think and like everyone saw there was a question mark over his (shoaib Akhtar's) fitness to bowl his full overs and also show commitment on the field for 50 overs," he added.

The Pakistan skipper raised a question mark over shoaib Akhtar's future when he agreed with a question that it was time for the selectors and management to stop relying on senior players who were not delivering for the team.

"We have lot of very good young bowlers in domestic cricket who are performing well and who deserve a chance," he added.

"I will definitely speak to the selectors and management we need to move on now."

He also made it clear that he did not think shoaib Akhtar was 100 per cent fit.

Cricket News -Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik questions shoaib Akhtar's future

http://www.cricnews.in/wp-content/uploads/2008/05/shoaib-akhtar.jpg
Pakistan's captain Shoaib Malik called on national selectors to blood new players on Wednesday and questioned the continued inclusion of experienced fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar.

shoaib Akhtar returned to Pakistan's one-day side on Tuesday after a 14 month absence but bowled just 13 overs in the first two one-day internationals against Sri Lanka and proved expensive.

The pacer, who has appeared in 46 tests and 140 one-dayers, was given just six overs in Wednesday's 129-run defeat.

"We need a bowler who can bowl ten overs and also show commitment in the field for 50 overs," Malik said.

"And I think and like everyone saw there was a question mark over his (shoaib Akhtar's) fitness to bowl his full overs and also show commitment on the field for 50 overs," he added.

The Pakistan skipper raised a question mark over shoaib Akhtar's future when he agreed with a question that it was time for the selectors and management to stop relying on senior players who were not delivering for the team.

"We have lot of very good young bowlers in domestic cricket who are performing well and who deserve a chance," he added.

"I will definitely speak to the selectors and management we need to move on now."

He also made it clear that he did not think shoaib Akhtar was 100 per cent fit.

Ricky Ponting says Australia need to prioritise

http://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200801/r220389_865820.jpg

Australian Cricketer Ricky Ponting believes one-day cricket will have to take the strain of Australia's packed schedule with full-strength sides unlikely to turn out for all the contests over the next 18 months. Injury woes have compounded the team's recent reversals in the Test arena, and Ponting feels rotation is the way for the future.

"I think the players, Cricket Australia and the players' association need to start prioritising which of the tournaments that we want to have the team as fit and raring to go as best we possibly can," Ponting told the Australian. "As we know there are lot of one-off little one-day tournaments and and some big Test series around those with South Africa over there and then the Ashes.

"The important thing for me is prioritising that and making sure we have all the players that are taking part in those big Test series as fit and ready to go for those."

Australia have three ODIs remaining against South Africa, with the series currently level at 1-1, followed by five more against New Zealand. They will play three Tests and five ODIs in South Africa before the proposed ODI series against Pakistan, and then head to England for the World Twenty20 followed by the Ashes. The postponed Champions Trophy and Tests against Pakistan are due later in the year followed by another full home season in Australia.

The team's resources have been stretched this season, especially in the bowling department which has lost the services of Brett Lee and Stuart Clark for significant periods while allrounders Andrew Symonds and Shane Watson are also on the sidelines.

The team management is conscious of player workload and rested Mitchell Johnson for recent one-day games, while Brad Haddin missed the Twenty20 internationals against South Africa. However, Ponting believes that part of Australia's run with injuries is just plain bad luck.

"Does it just come down to workload?" Ponting said. "I think we pay so much attention to workload ... that sometimes it is just the run that you have. But that is why this next phase is so important for us because we can't afford to be going into the Ashes with eight Cricket Australia [contracted] players out injured."

As well as all the international cricket there is also the IPL to fit in along the way, but Ponting said the main concern should be over Australia's matches. Ponting is one of a number of Australians who have IPL deals, including the recently-capped David Warner, but at the moment it isn't at the forefront of his mind.

"There has been a lot made about that [the IPL] and we might have one week after Pakistan in Abu Dhabi or wherever it may be," he said. "I think we need to worry about the international programme before we worry about the IPL."

Ricky Ponting says Australia need to prioritise

http://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200801/r220389_865820.jpg

Australian Cricketer Ricky Ponting believes one-day cricket will have to take the strain of Australia's packed schedule with full-strength sides unlikely to turn out for all the contests over the next 18 months. Injury woes have compounded the team's recent reversals in the Test arena, and Ponting feels rotation is the way for the future.

"I think the players, Cricket Australia and the players' association need to start prioritising which of the tournaments that we want to have the team as fit and raring to go as best we possibly can," Ponting told the Australian. "As we know there are lot of one-off little one-day tournaments and and some big Test series around those with South Africa over there and then the Ashes.

"The important thing for me is prioritising that and making sure we have all the players that are taking part in those big Test series as fit and ready to go for those."

Australia have three ODIs remaining against South Africa, with the series currently level at 1-1, followed by five more against New Zealand. They will play three Tests and five ODIs in South Africa before the proposed ODI series against Pakistan, and then head to England for the World Twenty20 followed by the Ashes. The postponed Champions Trophy and Tests against Pakistan are due later in the year followed by another full home season in Australia.

The team's resources have been stretched this season, especially in the bowling department which has lost the services of Brett Lee and Stuart Clark for significant periods while allrounders Andrew Symonds and Shane Watson are also on the sidelines.

The team management is conscious of player workload and rested Mitchell Johnson for recent one-day games, while Brad Haddin missed the Twenty20 internationals against South Africa. However, Ponting believes that part of Australia's run with injuries is just plain bad luck.

"Does it just come down to workload?" Ponting said. "I think we pay so much attention to workload ... that sometimes it is just the run that you have. But that is why this next phase is so important for us because we can't afford to be going into the Ashes with eight Cricket Australia [contracted] players out injured."

As well as all the international cricket there is also the IPL to fit in along the way, but Ponting said the main concern should be over Australia's matches. Ponting is one of a number of Australians who have IPL deals, including the recently-capped David Warner, but at the moment it isn't at the forefront of his mind.

"There has been a lot made about that [the IPL] and we might have one week after Pakistan in Abu Dhabi or wherever it may be," he said. "I think we need to worry about the international programme before we worry about the IPL."

All rounder Andrew Symonds to make a comeback in club cricket

http://www.smh.com.au/ffximage/2006/11/09/Andrew_Symonds_gallery__405x400.jpg
Australian all rounder Cricketer Andrew Symonds has been cleared to make his comeback from a knee injury this weekend - for club side Gold Coast.

Andrew Symonds, who underwent knee surgery after struggling through the Boxing Day Test against South Africa, returns to Queensland training tomorrow morning before suiting up for the Dolphins against Redlands on Saturday.

If he comes through that match unscathed, Andrew Symonds, 33, is in with a chance of playing for the Bulls in next week''s Sheffield Shield match against the Western Australia.

Queensland will also have the services of new pacer Scott Brant, who has recovered from his shin injury. Star all rounder Ashley Noffke will also be available.

All rounder Andrew Symonds to make a comeback in club cricket

http://www.smh.com.au/ffximage/2006/11/09/Andrew_Symonds_gallery__405x400.jpg
Australian all rounder Cricketer Andrew Symonds has been cleared to make his comeback from a knee injury this weekend - for club side Gold Coast.

Andrew Symonds, who underwent knee surgery after struggling through the Boxing Day Test against South Africa, returns to Queensland training tomorrow morning before suiting up for the Dolphins against Redlands on Saturday.

If he comes through that match unscathed, Andrew Symonds, 33, is in with a chance of playing for the Bulls in next week''s Sheffield Shield match against the Western Australia.

Queensland will also have the services of new pacer Scott Brant, who has recovered from his shin injury. Star all rounder Ashley Noffke will also be available.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

'Its Too early to call India No.1' - Sourav Ganguly

http://news.bbc.co.uk/media/images/40944000/jpg/_40944903_ganguly300.jpg

Sourav Ganguly, the former Indian captain, has said India must prove themselves overseas before claiming to be the world's best team and that South Africa had the better team and attack - and the better record, home and away. His comments come when Australia are on a losing streak and their rivals are fighting to dislodge them from the top of world cricket.

"To say that India would be number one, I think it's a bit too early", Sourav Ganguly told India's NDTV. "Look at the ICC points rankings... Australia, though they have not played good cricket for the last 3-4 months, are still a few points away from the rest.

"India have a very good team but I believe their real test will be overseas, when India go to New Zealand and when they start travelling abroad. If you look at the last year, India has played a lot of cricket at home."

Ganguly said South Africa were currently the better team after their tremendous run in 2008, and felt India's team and allround attack had yet to measure up to South Africa, who, if they win the third Test in Sydney, will take over the No.1 spot on the ICC Test rankings. "If you look at South Africa's performance in the last nine series, they have not dropped a series. It's been all round the world. They have beaten Australia in Australia, they went to England and beat them convincingly." India played nine home Tests in 2008, winning four and losing one, and six away Tests, with two wins and three defeats.

However, Sourav Ganguly was impressed with Indian cricket's improvement in facilities as well as performance, and felt the changes were made possible largely due to the huge revenues cricket administrators in India have been able to generate. "To be honest, the system has improved quite a lot. That's bound to happen. Things progress. Indian cricket has had the luck to have money to run cricket. You can see that in some of the stadiums which have been built, some of the facilities which are being provided to the Test playing centres. We played a Test in Nagpur and that's a fabulous venue for Test cricket."

'Its Too early to call India No.1' - Sourav Ganguly

http://news.bbc.co.uk/media/images/40944000/jpg/_40944903_ganguly300.jpg

Sourav Ganguly, the former Indian captain, has said India must prove themselves overseas before claiming to be the world's best team and that South Africa had the better team and attack - and the better record, home and away. His comments come when Australia are on a losing streak and their rivals are fighting to dislodge them from the top of world cricket.

"To say that India would be number one, I think it's a bit too early", Sourav Ganguly told India's NDTV. "Look at the ICC points rankings... Australia, though they have not played good cricket for the last 3-4 months, are still a few points away from the rest.

"India have a very good team but I believe their real test will be overseas, when India go to New Zealand and when they start travelling abroad. If you look at the last year, India has played a lot of cricket at home."

Ganguly said South Africa were currently the better team after their tremendous run in 2008, and felt India's team and allround attack had yet to measure up to South Africa, who, if they win the third Test in Sydney, will take over the No.1 spot on the ICC Test rankings. "If you look at South Africa's performance in the last nine series, they have not dropped a series. It's been all round the world. They have beaten Australia in Australia, they went to England and beat them convincingly." India played nine home Tests in 2008, winning four and losing one, and six away Tests, with two wins and three defeats.

However, Sourav Ganguly was impressed with Indian cricket's improvement in facilities as well as performance, and felt the changes were made possible largely due to the huge revenues cricket administrators in India have been able to generate. "To be honest, the system has improved quite a lot. That's bound to happen. Things progress. Indian cricket has had the luck to have money to run cricket. You can see that in some of the stadiums which have been built, some of the facilities which are being provided to the Test playing centres. We played a Test in Nagpur and that's a fabulous venue for Test cricket."

Graeme Smith scoffs at selection

Graeme Smith, in the nets yesterday, says there is uncertainty in the Australian team.
The days of deference are over. South African captain Graeme Smith sounded every bit the leader of the cricketing world yesterday when he described Australia's selection policy as "lacking in clarity" and equated the call-up of Doug Bollinger with England's calamitous selection of Darren Pattinson.

Smith arrived on these shores full of praise for Ricky Ponting's men but, with South Africa ideally placed to prise the No. 1 ranking from their grasp, the Proteas captain clearly feels no need for conciliatory gestures.

Asked his opinion on Bollinger's selection, Smith wasted little time in applying the pressure to both the debutant paceman and Australia's besieged selection panel.

"I think having (Ben) Hilfenhaus in Melbourne and now picking Bollinger here probably shows a little bit of lack of clarity in terms of where they want to go. That has surprised us," he said.

"It reminds me a bit of the England tour when they carried (Chris) Tremlett around and picked Pattinson at Headingley. From our perspective, it just seemed that naturally Hilfenhaus would come in.

"There's obviously a little bit of uncertainty there. Obviously providing uncertainty in the opposition camp means you've played well and you've met the challenges you needed to. We'll take that as a little feather in our cap on the trip."

The selections of Bollinger and Victorian all-rounder Andrew McDonald mark the first time Australia has fielded two debutants in a Test since 1999, when Adam Gilchrist and Scott Muller were chosen to play Pakistan at the Gabba.

They will receive their baggy green caps at a particularly difficult time for Australian cricket, with retirements, form concerns and injuries eroding a once mighty side.

Ponting yesterday indicated Bollinger would share the new ball with Peter Siddle, with Mitchell Johnson the first change. The pacemen have played just 20 Tests between them, but possess the unorthodox formation of two left-armers, which India has used to good effect in recent years.

The instability engulfing the Australians contrasts with the calm and confidence of the South Africans. The Proteas yesterday named their third unchanged line-up for the series — after Ashwell Prince failed a fitness test on his injured thumb — and believe they are capable of treading where no other team has and whitewashing Australia at home in a series.

Smith noted that the relative anonymity of Australia's new-ball pairing was a throwback to his school days.

Graeme Smith scoffs at selection

Graeme Smith, in the nets yesterday, says there is uncertainty in the Australian team.
The days of deference are over. South African captain Graeme Smith sounded every bit the leader of the cricketing world yesterday when he described Australia's selection policy as "lacking in clarity" and equated the call-up of Doug Bollinger with England's calamitous selection of Darren Pattinson.

Smith arrived on these shores full of praise for Ricky Ponting's men but, with South Africa ideally placed to prise the No. 1 ranking from their grasp, the Proteas captain clearly feels no need for conciliatory gestures.

Asked his opinion on Bollinger's selection, Smith wasted little time in applying the pressure to both the debutant paceman and Australia's besieged selection panel.

"I think having (Ben) Hilfenhaus in Melbourne and now picking Bollinger here probably shows a little bit of lack of clarity in terms of where they want to go. That has surprised us," he said.

"It reminds me a bit of the England tour when they carried (Chris) Tremlett around and picked Pattinson at Headingley. From our perspective, it just seemed that naturally Hilfenhaus would come in.

"There's obviously a little bit of uncertainty there. Obviously providing uncertainty in the opposition camp means you've played well and you've met the challenges you needed to. We'll take that as a little feather in our cap on the trip."

The selections of Bollinger and Victorian all-rounder Andrew McDonald mark the first time Australia has fielded two debutants in a Test since 1999, when Adam Gilchrist and Scott Muller were chosen to play Pakistan at the Gabba.

They will receive their baggy green caps at a particularly difficult time for Australian cricket, with retirements, form concerns and injuries eroding a once mighty side.

Ponting yesterday indicated Bollinger would share the new ball with Peter Siddle, with Mitchell Johnson the first change. The pacemen have played just 20 Tests between them, but possess the unorthodox formation of two left-armers, which India has used to good effect in recent years.

The instability engulfing the Australians contrasts with the calm and confidence of the South Africans. The Proteas yesterday named their third unchanged line-up for the series — after Ashwell Prince failed a fitness test on his injured thumb — and believe they are capable of treading where no other team has and whitewashing Australia at home in a series.

Smith noted that the relative anonymity of Australia's new-ball pairing was a throwback to his school days.

Cricket-Indian board is almost $25 million down

India's cricket board has lost almost $25 million from the scrapping of two one-day games against England and the cancellation of the 2008 Champions Trophy and this month's tour to Pakistan.

"The working committee noted there would be a reduction in revenue in the current year to the effect of 1.2 billion rupees ($24.87 million) as a result of the cancellation of two ODIs against England and India's tour to Pakistan," said Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary N. Srinivasan.

"This includes the loss of revenue arising out of the postponement of ICC Champions Trophy 2008," he added in a statement.

"It is to be noted that while there will be a decrease in revenue the BCCI will still have a healthy excess of income over expenditure for the current year."

The Indian government refused permission for the tour to Pakistan due to strained bilateral ties after blaming Islamist militants based in that country for the November attacks which killed 179 people in Mumbai.

India had been scheduled to play three tests, five one-dayers and a Twenty20 international.

Security concerns also forced the last two games of the home one-day series against England to be scrapped at the end of 2008.

The Champions Trophy has been put back to September 2009 after last year's tournament in Pakistan was postponed due to security concerns.

Cricket-Indian board is almost $25 million down

India's cricket board has lost almost $25 million from the scrapping of two one-day games against England and the cancellation of the 2008 Champions Trophy and this month's tour to Pakistan.

"The working committee noted there would be a reduction in revenue in the current year to the effect of 1.2 billion rupees ($24.87 million) as a result of the cancellation of two ODIs against England and India's tour to Pakistan," said Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary N. Srinivasan.

"This includes the loss of revenue arising out of the postponement of ICC Champions Trophy 2008," he added in a statement.

"It is to be noted that while there will be a decrease in revenue the BCCI will still have a healthy excess of income over expenditure for the current year."

The Indian government refused permission for the tour to Pakistan due to strained bilateral ties after blaming Islamist militants based in that country for the November attacks which killed 179 people in Mumbai.

India had been scheduled to play three tests, five one-dayers and a Twenty20 international.

Security concerns also forced the last two games of the home one-day series against England to be scrapped at the end of 2008.

The Champions Trophy has been put back to September 2009 after last year's tournament in Pakistan was postponed due to security concerns.