kin of mumbai attack victims welcome

Relatives of victims of the 2008 Mumbai attack victims on Wednesday welcomed the execution of the lone surviving attacker, Ajmal Kasab, saying justice has been finally delivered. In Varanasi, Sunita Yadav, wife of victim Upendra Yadav, expressed her gratitude to the authorities for carrying out the execution.

Daily Bollywood News:Bipasha Basu - Bollywood will remain a hero-centric business

Women are active in show business like never before, but will they surpass the status Bollywood heroes enjoy? Never, says Bipasha Basu, who feels there is minimum opportunity for female actors in the Hindi film industry

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Friday, September 11, 2009

Delhi students injured in a stampede in a government school

The condition of two students injured in a stampede in a government school in north east Delhi on Thursday remained critical on Friday, an official said.

"Two patients still remain critical. Other patients are showing recovery," JP Kapoor, the head of Guru Teg Bahadur (GTB) hospital's casualty department, told IANS.

Five girl students were killed and at least 34 others were injured Thursday morning in a stampede at the Government Senior Secondary School (Class 6-12) in Khajoori Khas. The victims were mostly from Classes 7-10, who had come to the school in pouring rain for their half-yearly examinations.

The injured were rushed to the GTB hospital.

The school also remained closed on Friday.

Angry families and relatives of the victims had indulged in stone pelting and protests outside the school Thursday, leading to the police throwing a security cordon around the premises.
Though police maintained that the initial reports suggested that a rumour about electric current leaking into the rainwater in the school triggered a stampede, some of the victims said that the boys who came over to the school to give their examination tried to molest them, resulting in the mishap.

However, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had also denied these claims, saying: "These are just rumours. The incident took place when some girls were going up the stairs and others were coming down."

The battle for Silver with Bronze

If China defeats Vietnam, they automatically clinch the Gold medal. Ukraine, Russia, Armenia, and Polang are tied with just 1 point behind. Georgia is mathematically alive for the medal race with 9 points.

Final round pairings:
Round 9 on 2009/09/11 at 10:00
Bo. 5 India Rtg - 10 USA Rtg 0 : 0
1.1 IM Dronavalli Harika 2474 - IM Krush Irina 2458
1.2 IM Sachdev Tania 2405 - IM Zatonskykh Anna 2462
1.3 WGM Karavade Eesha 2391 - IM Goletiani Rusudan 2391
1.4 WGM Nadig Kruttika 2273 - WIM Melekhina Alisa 2220
Bo. 6 Armenia Rtg - 4 Ukraine Rtg 0 : 0
2.1 IM Danielian Elina 2489 - IM Ushenina Anna 2448
2.2 IM Mkrtchian Lilit 2468 - WGM Zhukova Nataliya 2457
2.3 WGM Galojan Lilit 2326 - IM Gaponenko Inna 2438
2.4 WGM Aginian Nelli 2307 - WGM Zdebska Natalia 2410
Bo. 7 Russia Rtg - 3 China Two Rtg 0 : 0
3.1 IM Kosintseva Tatiana 2536 - Tan Zhongyi 2435
3.2 IM Kosintseva Nadezhda 2493 - WIM Zhang Xiaowen 2391
3.3 IM Kovalevskaya Ekaterina 2436 - WFM Ding Yixin 2321
3.4 WFM Gunina Valentina 2437 - Wang Xiaohui 2223
Bo. 8 China One Rtg - 2 Vietnam Rtg 0 : 0
4.1 GM Hou Yifan 2585 - WGM Hoang Thi Bao Tram 2265
4.2 GM Zhao Xue 2542 - WIM Pham Le Thao Nguyen 2301
4.3 Ju Wenjun 2443 - WFM Hoang Thi Nhu Y 2114
4.4 WGM Huang Qian 2424 - WFM Pham Bich Ngoc 2145
Bo. 9 Georgia Rtg - 1 Poland Rtg 0 : 0
5.1 GM Chiburdanidze Maia 2506 - IM Rajlich Iweta 2465
5.2 GM Dzagnidze Nana 2535 - WGM Zawadzka Jolanta 2414
5.3 IM Javakhishvili Lela 2472 - IM Dworakowska Joanna 2345
5.4 IM Lomineishvili Maia 2378 - WGM Majdan Joanna 2361

Standings going into the final round:
Rk. SNo Team Games + = - TB1 TB2
1 8 China One 8 5 1 2 11 19,5
2 4 Ukraine 8 3 4 1 10 18,0
3 7 Russia 8 3 4 1 10 18,0
4 6 Armenia 8 4 2 2 10 17,0
5 1 Poland 8 4 2 2 10 16,5
6 9 Georgia 8 4 1 3 9 17,0
7 5 India 8 3 1 4 7 14,5
8 10 USA 8 2 2 4 6 15,5
9 3 China Two 8 2 2 4 6 15,0
10 2 Vietnam 8 0 1 7 1 9,0

Official website:
Full results:

Polgar girls develop into Knight Raiders

Texas Tech Knight Raiders Chess Club President Stephanie Ballom (TX), Rebecca Lelko (OH), and Ananya Roy (GA), are all former participants of the Susan Polgar National Invitational for Girls. Both Rebecca and Ananya participated into the 2009 SPNI. Now they are teammates at Texas Tech.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Chess Tactic: Overnight

White to move. Does White have enough compensation for 2 pawns? How should White proceed?

2r4k/2p1r2p/2RpP1p1/1p1P1p2/pP3P2/P7/3QR2K/q7 w - - 0 1

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In Space Station comes to Electronic Nose

Sniffing out any potential contaminants on the International Space Station where it was stationed for the last six months, the JPL-built electronic nose, or ENose, is homeward bound.

While on the space station, the ENose sampled the air with 32 sensors that can detect various odors and pinpoint which ones are dangerous to humans. The sleek, shoebox-sized ENose, the third generation of its kind, monitored the air for 10 contaminants continuously.

"Our six-month test went very well. The ENose identified formaldehyde, Freon 218, methanol and ethanol, but all of them were at harmless levels," said Amy Ryan, principal investigator of the ENose at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Ryan built the ENose at JPL and has managed the project from its early beginnings in 1996. "An instrument like this could one day remain on the Space Station and monitor air quality in real-time."

In the future, the ENose could be used in monitoring crew cabins for vehicles to the moon and other destinations or be stationed on a moon base. Other potential applications include detecting a smoldering fire before it erupts, sniffing for unexploded land mines and monitoring for chemical spills in a work area. There are also possible applications in medical diagnosis.

"A human nose is not always as sensitive to chemicals as the ENose and our noses cannot even detect some hazardous chemicals," said Ryan. "The ENose can smell trouble and give people advance warning before contamination levels cause harm."

The ENose was flown to the International Space Station by the Space Shuttle Endeavour STS-126 mission in December 2008. It is set to return home today on the Space Shuttle Discovery STS-128, after its 13-day flight.

For more information on the ENose see: .

JPL Wildfire Threat: Spacecraft Talk Continued

As the flames of the raging brush fire dubbed the Station Fire threatened the northern edge of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Saturday, Aug. 29, the managers of NASA's Deep Space Network prepared for the worst.

The Deep Space Operations Center at JPL is the nerve center for the Deep Space Network, an international network of antennas that send and receive information to interplanetary spacecraft. Staffed 24/7, 365 days a year, the JPL hub is constantly active connecting three major antenna sites, numerous mission operation centers run by NASA and an international group of space agencies, and more than 30 spacecraft flying throughout our solar system.

"We were more like the nervous center that weekend than the nerve center," said Wayne Sible of JPL, the network's deputy program manager for Deep Space Network development, operations and services.

The Deep Space Network operations managers knew that, fire or no fire, time was critical for sending software programs to and downloading diagnostic information from several spacecraft, including the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which had an unexpected computer reboot the day the fire started on Aug. 26, and the Dawn spacecraft, on its way to the asteroid belt.

The network's antennas that send and receive information to spacecraft, located at Goldstone, in California's Mojave Desert; near Madrid, Spain; and near Canberra, Australia, were never in danger. But Sible and Jim Hodder, the network's operations manager, got word on Friday, Aug. 28, that the Station fire, which started in the San Gabriel Mountains above the Laboratory, was burning towards JPL. Emergency managers and senior JPL administrators called for JPL to be closed, except for essential personnel, on Friday evening.

A flurry of phone calls followed -- to the Deep Space Network team, the mission operation centers and ITT Systems Division, the contractor that provides the operators for the operations center at JPL.

On a phone call with Hodder, the team decided to move network operators to a facility in Monrovia, Calif., where other support work is normally conducted for the Deep Space Network. The Monrovia building - about 15 miles from JPL -- offered basic access to the critical systems, though the operators would not be able to use personalized computer scripts or notes that facilitate their work.

It seemed practical, since activating the emergency control center at the Goldstone complex in California's Mojave Desert would be more disruptive and require some suspension of communications while they moved staff 150 miles to that location.

Two of the five Deep Space Network operators on weekend duty were sent to Monrovia, but three volunteered to stay at the control center at JPL, to ensure systems continued to operate normally, to keep connections open with the flight projects, and to maintain the flow of engineering and science data to flight projects and scientists around the globe.

The three who stayed at JPL - along with about 40 other mission-critical personnel at any given time - were told not to spend much time outside. Hodder called frequently to check on the health of the crew and to obtain status reports on the network.

On Saturday afternoon, Sible and Hodder were ready to pull out those remaining three operators and put further communications with the network on hold if the fire reached the Mesa, a flat helipad and testing site at the northern edge of JPL.

That afternoon, the fire burned to within an eighth of a mile of the northern border of the lab. Emergency managers told staff to be ready to evacuate in 30 minutes.

Thankfully, with fire department handcrews cutting firebreaks, helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft dropping water and flame retardant, and the wind shifting, the danger passed on Saturday night. An unpleasant haze of smoke settled on the lab, but the air had cleared enough for the network operators in Monrovia to return to JPL Monday evening. The rest of JPL opened as usual on Tuesday morning at 6 a.m.

In the end, the Deep Space Network was able to complete its 182 scheduled uploading and downloading sessions with spacecraft over the weekend without interruption.

"It went very well," Sible said. "Nobody saw any hiccups whatsoever."

Size-zero pizza story and the Kareena Kapoor

It has barely been three months when Mallika Sherawat launched a milkshake named after her. Now Kareena Kapoor follows the same route and has launches an international brand of pizza loaded with cheese layers but ironically called ‘Kareena Kapoor Size-Zero Pizza’. The pizza

has toppings of finely diced chicken, red chillies, baby corn with is spiked with onions.
Kareena is obviously happy with this and says, “I love Italian food. I must eat pizza at least twice a week; and yes, I’m flattered that a pizza has been named after me.’’

Talking about cheese, Bebo adds, “It’s a misconception that cheese be unhealthy. My dietician has put me on a cheese diet for the longest time. Cheese has the right fat percentage required for the body and if eaten right, it can be advantageous rather than detrimental.’’

Talking about cheese, she says, “Honestly speaking, I’m no longer a size zero. I’m slightly rounded because I need to be that way for my role in Karan Johar’s Hindi version of Step Mom.”
It may be mentioned here that Kareena will star in the Bollywood remake of ‘Stepmom’ which will be produced by Karan Johar’s Dharma productions into association with Shahrukh’s Red Chilles Entertainment. The film has Kareena playing a businesswoman who’s in a live-in relationship with Arjun Rampal’s character, who in turn is recently divorced from Kajol’s character. For her role, Kareena required to get away with her size-zero figure and get back her original curvy avatar.

Lisa Ray: diagnosed with deadly cancer

Lisa Ray’s blog ‘The Yellow Diaries’ revealed the news that the model-turned-actress be suffering from Multiple Myeloma - an incurable cancer of White Blood Cells.
On 8th September, Lisa posted, “I was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma on June 23rd. Started my first cycle of treatment July 2nd.Notlong ago.”

The actress continued, “For me, it was a relief to hear what was wrong. The plasma cells into my bone marrow were rampaging, multiplying, squeezing out the red blood cells and it was time to begin doing something about it. I was also tired of being tired all the time. And you just know when something is not kosher with your body. So when I sat there with Bobcat — my life partner and reservoir of Yellow—and got the news I didn’t react and I didn’t cry. I’m an actress, believe me, I can be dramatic. Not just then though.”

Incidentally, the actress decided to get a medical checkup only, “a few months ago, my bone marrow started sending me messages. I was always exhausted, pale, drained… The lack of oxygen made me a serial yawner and spacier than a displaced Czarina. Little did I know, but my hemoglobin had fallen to levels where even a dedicated Blood sucker would turn their thoughts to revival… I got a routine blood test with the results sent me to the hospital for a blood transfusion.”

“…And then I stopped travelling and returned to Canada. Got myself tested by Dr Susy Lin, landed in emergency and eventually got full membership into the Cancer Club. That’s how I found out I have Multiple Myeloma.”

Where Lisa did not loose her cool on getting the news, her friends and well-wishers are devastated by the news. Vikram Bhatt, the director of ‘Kasoor,’ which marked the debut of Lisa in Bollywood said, “I am into complete shock, I’m going to check on her immediately.”
Shamim Sarif, the director of Lisa’s upcoming flick ‘I Can’t Think Straight’ said on Twitter, “I have known since her diagnosis but at this point Lisa wants to truly raise awareness and funding to make sure this incurable disease finds a cure.”

All our best wishes to the actress so that she can fight the deadly disease!

Sonam Kapoor

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Ishikawa: picked for Presidents Cup

Ryo Ishikawa is known in Japan as the "Shy Prince," a 17-year-old sensation who has won four times on the Japan Golf Tour in the last calendar year. He was hardly bashful during a meeting this summer of prospective Presidents Cup players.

"He was engaged, he walked around the entire room, introduced himself to everybody, made sure everybody understood that he wanted to be on the team," International captain Greg Norman said.
Norman was so impressed that he added Ishikawa to his team as a captain's pick for the Presidents Cup on Tuesday, making the Japanese teen the youngest player ever in these matches.
The Presidents Cup will be played Oct. 8-11 at Harding Park in San Francisco.
The big surprise was Norman's second pick -- Adam Scott -- who has endured the worst season of his career.

Scott, No. 3 in the world a year ago in July, has plunged to No. 53 and barely qualified for the FedEx Cup playoffs. He was eliminated in the first round, and conceded he probably would be left off the team. Scott even planned surgery for a cyst behind his knee.
"At the end of the day, he's got the playing skills ... what he can bring to the locker room, the support he gives to other players, the connection and the experience that he's had playing on the Presidents Cup team," Norman said. "He was really a logical choice."
Norman picked Scott, a fellow Australian and protege, over players that included Rory Sabbatini, who won the Byron Nelson Championship in May and fell out of the top 10 in the standings in the final week, bumped by Y.E. Yang and his PGA Championship victory.
U.S. captain Fred Couple's picks were no surprise at all -- U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover and Hunter Mahan.

Couples had told during the PGA Championship that he was taking Mahan. Couples said he told Glover after the PGA Championship that he was on the team.
Glover and Mahan were captain's picks for the Presidents Cup two years ago.
"I told Hunter, 'You're my guy. If something happens, we've got issues,'" Couples said.
He almost had issues.

Couples took Mahan, a superb ball-striker whose only PGA Tour victory came two years ago, over Brian Gay and Dustin Johnson. Both players have won twice in the last calendar year.
"The hardest thing I've had ... Dustin Johnson and Brian Gay," Couples said. "Brian Gay has won twice. He's taking it pretty hard, which he should. I was overlooked one time, but I got picked a few times. For Hunter Mahan and Lucas, I think it's a no-brainer, I really do."
The Americans have won the Presidents Cup outright the last two times and hold a 5-1-1 edge in the matches that began in 1994. Their only loss came in 1998 in Australia.

The Presidents Cup completes a big year for Ishikawa, who at 15 became the youngest player to win a tournament on a sanctioned tour. He made his U.S. debut at Riviera in the Northern Trust Open, received invitations to the Masters and PGA Championship, and played the first two rounds with Tiger Woods and Lee Westwood in the British Open.

He opened with a 68 at Turnberry before much fanfare (beating Woods by three shots) before missing the cut with a 78.

"He played well that week," Norman said. "He played with Tiger. He stood up to Tiger. So that tells me he can deal with a pressure situation. He is not afraid of the big moment. The other thing which came into my mind is he travels with an entourage of about 50 media people, so he's used to that type of atmosphere, that buzz going on all the time, and it doesn't bother him."

Ishikawa said in a statement -- it was 2:30 a.m. Wednesday in Japan when the announcement was made -- that he was honored.

"There are so many great players on both teams, and I'm humbled by my selection to be with them," Ishikawa said. "Although I'll be a bit nervous surrounded by a such a great captain and so many great players in the world, I will do my best during the week and hopefully contribute to the victory over the American team."

Ishikawa is the first Japanese player in the Presidents Cup since Shigeki Maruyama in 2000.
The rest of the International team consists of Geoff Ogilvy, Vijay Singh, Camilo Villegas, Retief Goosen, Ernie Els, Angel Cabrera, Mike Weir, Robert Allenby, Yang and Tim Clark.

For more information about Golf News view this site:

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Extent of Station Fire Burn: New NASA Image

On September 6, 2009, the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) instrument on NASA's Terra satellite captured this simulated natural color image of the Station fire, burning in the San Gabriel Mountains north of Los Angeles. The fire began August 26 in La Canada Flintridge near NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena (seen at the bottom of the image), and soon grew to become the largest fire in Los Angeles County's history. Ten days after its start, the fire had consumed more than 160,000 acres (251 square miles) of forest, leaving behind a charred, blackened landscape as it spread eastward. Smoke from the actively burning area can be seen on the right side of the image; the large dark gray area dominating the image is the evidence of forest and chaparral destruction.

Kangana: was spotted with swollen lips

You may not be able to recognize the babe in shots below in the first instance, but let us tell you that she is the same gorgeous Himachal beauty Kangana Ranaut who has graced the silver screen for many hits like ‘Gangster’, ‘Life in a Metro’, ‘fashion’ also the recent ‘Raaz 2’. The girl has obviously gone in for a lip surgery and has come out with awful results.

Kangana was spotted with swollen lips in Bandra when she was out on a shopping spree. But when the media also her fans gathered round her to get a few clicks, they were shocked to see that the area around her lips was swollen and she looked awful.

Our bit of advice to the Bollywood beauties- It is ultimately the acting talent which counts and going under the knife to get more of what you already have does result here a loss more often than not….

Toronto Film Festival: Rani & Priyanka to grace this year

The 34th annual Toronto Film Festival (TIFF) to be held this month from 10th to 19th will see the world premiere of Anurag Singh’s “Dil Bole Hadippa” and Ashutosh Gowariker’s “What’s Your Rashee?”

So, the directors Anurag and Ashutosh along with the stars of the movies Priyanka Chopra, Lisa Ray, Rani Mukherjee and Harman Baweja will rub shoulders with George Clooney, Demi Moore, Playboy founder Hugh Hefner and talk show queen Oprah Winfrey at this mega-film show. Other big Hollywood names include Nicolas Cage, Sir Ridley Scott, Drew Barrymore, Kevin Spacey, Michael Douglas, Penelope Cruz with Keanu Reeves.

From our tinsel town, other stars to make their appearance include actor Abhay Deol, filmmaker Buddhadeb Dasgupta, Deepa Mehta’s brother Dilip Mehta, and documentary maker Vikram Jayanti.
We wait eagerly for the event when Hollywood will meet Bollywood.

Khatron Ke Khiladi-2: The 13 beautiful girls

Colors is back with the second season of its ‘Fear Factor-Khatron Ke Khiladi’ and with the second season promising twice the danger also twice the excitement, the promos have created twice the stir they had created for the first season.

The host again will be Akshay Kumar with 13 new beauties this time viz. Bruna Abdullah, Sushma Reddy, Carol Gracias, Jesse Randhawa, Mandira Bedi, Nauheed Cyrusi, Rosa Catalano, Rupali Ganguly, Sonika Kaliraman, Shonali Nagrani, Pia Trivedi, Shveta Salve and Anushka Manchanda. Each female celebrity will have a male partner also they will be seen competing with each other to win Rs.5 million as prize money.

Mr Deepak Dhar, Managing Director of Endemol India, which own the channel, said, “This year our chosen location was Cape town where the new contestants challenged their fears and raw nature at its wildest.”

Check out the beautiful girls at the red carpet for the show.

Globus: Autumn Winter collection of Kareena photoshoot

It has been long now since Kareena Kapoor replaced Soha Ali Khan as the brand ambassador of the apparel retail chain Globus. Given the style diva status that Kareena holds into the industry, choosing Kareena for the promotion of the brand was a natural decision of the company.

Since then, we have seen Kareena in many photoshoots for the brand, each oozing style, charisma and attitude. Ultra slim and with a perfect figure, Kareena will now be seen sizzling again into the latest photoshoot for Globus International for their collection of Autumn Winter 2009. The shots are absolutely stunning despite the fact that there is no skin show from the diva.

Preity Zinta fling sarcastic remarks on Shilpa Shetty

Both Preity Zinta and Shilpa Shetty are the owners of the IPL teams. Both have been successful actresses on the big screen. So, it is but natural that there would be jealousy, bitching also cat-fights between the two but the kind of statements Preity gave in for Shilpa on the occasion of FICCI’s 10th anniversary celebration can be called least professional.

When asked about the Shilpa-Preity IPL competition, Preity said, “She is not going to play cricket.” She then added, “I own a team, I am an investor into the team, I am the chairperson of the team. It is very difficult for them to digest that I am the boss.”

Preity here supposedly forgot that even she is not going to play cricket also that Shilpa is the boss too of her IPL team Rajasthan Royals. Shetty girl was politically correct saying, “Our teams are in competition.”

Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani: First Look

This is

indeed a very crucial year for Ranbir Kapoor who has three back to back releases awaiting to hit the screens. The movies are Wake Up Sid, Rocket Singh, and Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahani.
Directed by Rajkumar Santoshi and produced by Ramesh S Taurani, ‘Ajab Prem ki Gajab Kahani’ stars Katrina Kaif in the lead role as well as Salman Khan in a supporting role along with Upen Patel and Darshan Jariwala. The movie has Ranbir playing the melancholy lover-boy similar to the character of Raj Kapoor in ‘Mera Naam Joker’ and Chaplin in ‘City Lights’. Katrina Kaif plays a young and trendy girl who believes into the goodness of all things.

Here we are with the latest posters of the film. Check out and enjoy!

New Zealand vs Sri Lanka 1st Match live score

Thilan Samaraweera is expected to play in the decisive No. 5 position and the Sri Lankans will likely go with both Mendis and Muralitharan, despite the fact that it has already had a pretty bad run lately. Malinga and Dammika Prasad will fight it out for last place in the team.

The kiwi hope that Grant Elliott comes well in the No. 5 position and it is a straight shoot out between Nathan McCullum and JEETAN Patel for the second spinner track on the page. Shane Bond will spearhead the seam attack, which also includes Kyle Mills, Ian Butler.

Pitch and weather conditions:

The draw has played a major role in the Premadasa in the day-night games in recent times. With the ball swinging like a boomerang, when the lights are fully effective, the team bats first a great advantage. The runways at Khettarama have much lighter batter and even if it has a tendency to be a bit slow and sluggish at times, has a score of 275 is the norm here. Scattered thunderstorms were predicted in the morning with the maximum temperature touching 28 degrees.

New Zealand (From): Brendon McCullum(w), Jesse Ryder, Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, Neil Broom, Nathan McCullum, Jacob Oram, Daniel Vettori(c), Kyle Mills, Shane Bond, Ian Butler, Grant Elliott, Jeetan Patel, Brendon Diamanti, Gareth Hopkins

Sri Lanka (From): Tillakaratne Dilshan, Sanath Jayasuriya, Kumar Sangakkara(w/c), Mahela Jayawardene, Thilan Samaraweera, Chamara Kapugedera, Angelo Mathews, Nuwan Kulasekara, Muttiah Muralitharan, Malinga Bandara, Lasith Malinga, Thilina Kandamby, Thilan Thushara, Ajantha Mendis, Dammika Prasad, Upul Tharanga

See Live Score Click HERE

Dubai for rehabilitation: Flintoff holding

Andrew Flintoff is to spend the next three months in Dubai to aid his recovery from the latest operation to his right knee with make a return to England's one-day team as their star allrounder.

"It's always easier doing rehabilitation in warm weather and that's the main reason why we've decided to go to Dubai," Flintoff told his website. "Three years ago when I be recovering from my ankle, we all went to Florida as a family and it worked really well and I see this being a similar situation.

"I can't drive for at least another six weeks, so it will difficult getting from A to B and doing my rehabilitation without relying on someone else to drive if I stayed into England. Where we are staying in Dubai, all I have to do is press the right button in the lift to get from our apartment to the gym and everything I need is on the doorstep."

Flintoff, 31, retired from Test cricket at the end of England's Ashes-winning summer, and 24 hours after helping them regain the urn he underwent arthroscopy to his injured right knee. He admitted in a newspaper interview last week that there's a chance he may never play again, but his main ambition remains to play in another World Cup and has targetted England's one-day leg of their tour of Bangladesh next February as a realistic date for a comeback.

His latest bout of rehabilitation suffered a minor setback this week when it be revealed that he was afflicted by deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in his right calf, though the ECB was quick to release a statement describing it as "a common complication of surgery".