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Sarfaraz & Co’s fielding efforts leaving a lot to be desired



Sarfaraz Ahmed

London, June 24 (IANS) There are certain things which can be associated with Pakistan cricket: decent batting, exceptional fast bowling and poor fielding. The country, which has produced brilliant pacers and batsmen over the years, have just not been able to produce exceptional fielders. And that has once again been on display in the ongoing edition of the World Cup.

Despite producing geniuses with bat and ball, fielding has always remained a cause of concern for the Green Brigade. This time too, butter fingers have been on display every time the Pakistan players have taken the field. Let alone catches, Sarfaraz Ahmed’s team has raised eyebrows even with regular fielding efforts.

In the six matches played so far in the World Cup, Pakistan have dropped as many as 14 catches. On the other hand, their arch-rivals India have been exceptional in terms of fielding and have dropped only one catch in the four complete matches they have played.

Even in the game against South Africa on Sunday, Pakistan dropped six catches while defending 308. Out of the six, Mohammed Amir dropped three — one off his own bowling, one at third man and one at long-off. However, to their luck, the missed chances on the field didn’t have any bearing on the result as they won the match by 49 runs and kept alive their hopes of making it to the semi-finals.

As mentioned earlier, it’s not just their catching which has let them down on a number of occasions in the tournament, even their ground fielding has been substandard and has already been under the radar of many cricket pundits.

During their 89-run defeat against India, Sarfaraz Ahmed’s boys were seen fielding as if they were trying to catch chickens. In that very match, they missed a very easy opportunity to run-out Rohit Sharma as the fielder threw at the wrong end. The ODI vice-captain of the Indian team went on to score 140 and almost demolished all chances of Pakistan registering their first World Cup win against the Men in Blue.

And it’s not something which Pakistan haven’t been working upon. Ever since Mickey Arthur became the head coach, he has been working relentlessly on improving the fielding standards of his team.

While reviewing Pakistan’s win over Proteas, Arthur seemed frustrated with the repeated mistakes that his team has been committing on the field.

“We train and we train and we train, and we’ve put in massive amounts of work (fielding),” he said. “That’s something we’ll be exploring again in the next couple of days because we can’t be dropping that many catches and expect to beat teams getting into almost a knockout phase for us.”

Going into the next three games, Pakistan really need to tighten up their screws and improve their fielding standards, especially against New Zealand, who are considered amongst the best fielding sides in the world.

“Pakistan’s fielding was just not good. They dropped fairly easy catches and that needs to be rectified. Their fielding has to improve,” says former speedster Shoaib Akhtar calling on the Green Brigade to improve their fielding standards.

The current crop of Pakistan cricketers, barring one or two, seems to lack the agility and the fitness standards which the current form fast-paced cricket demands. Earlier, fielding used to be secondary aspect of cricket with the game being restricted to Test and ODIs. However, now with the advent of T20s, the game has become highly professional and has become more demanding.

Even India, which was once counted among the weak fielding sides, is now a top fielding force to reckon with. M.S. Dhoni, while he used to captain the national side, once said he wants India to become the best fielding side in the world and they are on course to do just that.

But Pakistan have a long way to go before they can even put their hands up and win games with their fielding efforts.

(Aakash Kumar can be contacted at [email protected])


BJP denies tickets to 3-time MLA Kulwant Rana, 25 others

Rana became the youngest candidate to win the elections in 2003, while he retained his seat from Rithala constituency in 2008 and 2013 too.





New Delhi, Jan 17 : The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday announced the first list of candidates for the Delhi Assembly elections to be held on February 8.

In its first list, the party announced 57 candidates while it denied tickets to 26 leaders, including former state vice president and three time MLA Kulwant Rana.

Rana became the youngest candidate to win the elections in 2003, while he retained his seat from Rithala constituency in 2008 and 2013 too.

The BJP has still not announced its candidates for 13 seats, including New Delhi, Mehrauli and Sangam Vihar.

The party has fielded Manish Chaudhary in place of Rana from Rithala. Sources said the party denied a ticket to Rana as he was involved in some controversies.

Similarly, Rajni Abbi has been replaced by Surendra Singh Bittu in Timarpur, while Rajesh Yadav from Badli, Gugan Singh Ranga from Bawana, Prabhu Dayal from Sultanpur Majra, Surjeet from Mangolpuri and Nandkishor from Trinagar have not been given tickets for the upcoming Assembly polls.

The party has also denied the ticket to Vivek Garg, who lost the elections in 2015 from the Model Town seat, and fielded former AAP Minister Kapil Mishra, who joined the BJP after quitting AAP.

The party has also denied tickets to Praveen Jain from Sadar Bazar, Shyam Lal from Ballimaran, B.B. Tyagi from Laxmi Nagar, Jitendra Chaudhary from Gandhi Nagar, Sanjay Jain from Seelampur, Ajay Mahawat from Ghonda and Krishna Teerath from Patel Nagar.

The party has also changed the candidates in Janakpuri, Uttam Nagar, Palam, Jangpura, Malviya Nagar, Ambedkar Nagar, Greater Kailash, Kondli and Patparganj.

(Navneet Mishra can be reached at [email protected])

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No need to reconfigure Asia-Pacific as Indo Pacific, halt strategies to contain China, says Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov



Sergei Lavrov

Speaking during the fifth edition of the Raisina Dialogue 2020 in the Indian capital, Russian Foreign minister Sergei Lavrov on Tuesday slammed both United States and India for making an attempt to establish a concept of Indo-Pacific to contain China.

At a global conference to discuss the most challenging issues facing the world community, Lavrov furiously questioned the rules- based word order by the US while simultaneously violating international law, “Why do you need to call Asia-Pacific as Indo-Pacific? The answer is evident — to exclude China. Terminology should be unifying, not divisive. Neither SCO nor BRICS is exclusionary.”

Stating that US deliberately reconfigured the region just to isolate China and apparently pointed to the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QSD, also known as the Quad) strategic dialogue between the United States, Japan, Australia and India , the diplomatic and military arrangement as a response to increased Chinese economic and military power and influence in South China Sea.

Accusing Western countries of not adhering to the United Nations charter for discussions based on sovereign equality of states, noninterference in internal matters, territorial integrity and peaceful resolution of disputes, he asked, “Why do our Western friends insist on a rules-based order and not international law.Western friends are using international law less. Instead, they have coined a new concept which they call as a rules-based world order.”

He emphasized that China’s influence in the region is enormous and said that any strategy should not exclude anyone rather cooperation should be extended to all.

Russia has been urging New Delhi and Beijing to continue coordinating their efforts to ensure global and regional security, including in the Asia-Pacific region.

China’s assertive territorial claims in the South China Sea has infuriated many as Southeast Asian nations Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei all have rival claims.
He further added that Russia is also committed to the values of equal and indivisible security.

“The ongoing process of creating a more fair and democratic polycentric world order requires us to closely coordinate our efforts and to forge consolidated stances,” the Russian foreign minister had said. “It is important to keep promoting positive and unifying international agenda, directed at ensuring global and regional stability and security, at achieving goals of sustainable development, at improving the framework of inter-state relations, including in the Asia-Pacific region.”.

He said that Russia was very much concerned with the situation in the Persian Gulf region and suggested that Gulf countries start thinking about a collective security mechanism as a confidence-building measure.

Lavrov backed India for the permanent seat in the United Nation security council

“G7 can’t decide any issue of significance for decisions on BRICS it should be G20. India & Brazil should absolutely be at the UNSC. Developing countries should be given adequate representation there,” Lavrov said at the event while advocating representation of developing countries in the UNSC.

While concluding his speech, he talked about Indo-Russia ties, and said, “We want to develop such relations with all countries of the region and I hope that our Indian friends will be promoting the same ideology.”

Blog : By Arti Bali,


(Senior Journalist)

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Gehlot asked to pilot anti-CAA activities




Gehlot, Pilot

In a major development, which indicates growing clout of Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot in the party, he has been assigned to coordinate with the Congress and alliance Chief Ministers to block the new citizensip law (CAA) and the National Population Register (NPR).

Gehlot will also play a key role and steer the anti-CAA resolutions by Assemblies. The Congress has communicated to its Chief Ministers and alliance partners to adopt a resolution against the CAA.

Punjab could become the first Congress-ruled state to pass an anti-CAA resolution in the Assembly.

Gehlot has been asked to meet all the Chief Ministers for this as well as to oppose the NPR.

According to sources, the resolutions will be moved as a private member bills as the government can’t move such a resolution.

Till now, only Kerala has passed such a resolution. West Bengal has said it was against the CAA.

The opposition meet, convened by the Congress here on Monday, urged all the Chief Ministers to stop the NPR process.

“The CAA, the NPR and the NRC are part of a package and unconstitutional. They target the poor, downtrodden, SCs/STs and linguistic & religious minorities. The NPR will form the NRC’s basis. We demand withdrawal of the CAA and immediate stoppage of the nationwide NRC/NPR. The Chief Ministers who have announced that they will not implement the NRC in their states, must consider suspension of the NPR enumeration as it’s the prelude to the NRC,” it said in a resolution.

Earlier the Congress Working Committee, said the Narandra Modi government had unleashed the brute state power to suppress, subjugate and stifle the voice of youth and students across the country.

“A concerted attack on the Constitution, rampant unemployment, commercialisation of education, unprecedented fee hikes and autocratic refusal to listen to the voice and concerns of youth/students have led to spontaneous protests across campuses,” it said.


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