Daily Archives: December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas from Lanka Page

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Enjoy MY GROWN-UP CHRISTMAS LIST by Kelly Clarkson


Ranatunga says he’s lost respect for Crowe

Rex Clementine reporting from Wellington

Former Sri Lanka captain Arjuna Ranatunga says that he’s disappointed with the recent comments by former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe on Muttiah Muralitharan’s bowling action. Crowe, now a television commentator, had said that Muralitharan’s doosra, a delivery the bowler has mastered to fox world’s leading batsmen needs to be scrutinized regularly by the game’s governing body.

Ranatunga, a staunch supporter of Muralitharan, told ‘Sunday Island’ that he has lost respect for Crowe.

"If you are not happy with something you raise your concerns as and when you see it. You don’t wait till your team loses and then make a big hue and cry about it. Why didn’t Martin have any concerns when the New Zealanders were winning in Christchurch? Why does he all of a sudden raise issues when the team is losing? It’s disappointing," Ranatunga, Muralitharan’s mentor said.

"I had a lot of respect for Crowe as a player and as a gentleman. But I’ve got to say that I’ve lost that respect. He sounds more Australian now. It’s those Australians who come up with all these stuff when they are losing," Ranatunga said.

Off-spinner Muralitharan, world’s second highest wicket taker, bowls the delivery that moves away from the right-handed batsman cleverly and over the years the off-spinner’s secret weapon has been named as the ‘doosra’, a Hindi word which means the other one.

The ICC appointed a high profile committee to look into the legality of Muralitharan’s doosra in 2004 and the committee cleared the bowler after extensive testing.

"I feel sorry for Murali. He’s got to put up with this kind of crap whenever he comes up with a good performance."

"If Murali had been playing for Australia, New Zealand or England they would have hailed him as the greatest bowler ever to play the game. He would have been known as the genius who overcame deformity and became a star. Simply because he’s an Asian, Murali has got to go through this."

"He has been cleared by the ICC and if Martin is still not satisfied Murali went on his own for tests in Perth early this year. Murali knows that he’s innocent and he wouldn’t hesitate to go through any test, but that wouldn’t stop people like Martin," Ranatunga added.

Crowe’s elder brother Jeff is an ICC Match Referee.

Martin Crowe is a respectable figure in Sri Lanka after he declined to abandon New Zealand’s tour of the island in 1992 despite several team-mates deciding to go back home after a suicide bomb attack that killed country’s naval chief in front of the team hotel in Colombo. via … The Island

Jordanian ships’s crew released but ship held

By Walter Jayawardhana

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) whose sea pirates commandeered the Jordanian cargo vessel ‘Farah 111’ has released the 25 member crew but was still holding the ship and it load of 14,000 tons of rice the owning company announced.

The crew was released to the international Committee of Red Cross and they were on their way to the Sri Lankan capital Colombo, the owning company of the ship Salam International Transport and Trading Company said in a statement.

"The crew of the seized ship has been released and handed over to Red Crescent personnel, who planned to evacuate them to Colombo this evening," said Saeed Suleiman, General Manager of the company, December 24.  The Red Cross is known as the Red Crescent in the Moslem countries.

The company said the ship’s captain Ramez Abdul Jabbar called them by telephone and informed that they were in good health.

The 150 meter ship is still being held at the rebel stronghold of Mulaitivu, When the ship was seized by the LTTE sea pirates and reported burgled by them it was carrying 14,000 metric tons of rice to South Africa from India’s Andra Pradesh.

The crew of 11 Jordanians, 13 Egyptians and the Iraqi captain were expected to be on their way to Colombo. 

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