Sachin to focus on Test cricket; always a place for fit Yuvraj Singh in Team India: Srikkanth

Selection committee chairman K. Srikkanth has said Sachin Tendulkar is not on the tour to Sri Lanka, by choice. The batting great made a conscious decision to focus on Test cricket in order to extend his career, feels Srikkanth. According to a report in The Hindu, Srikkanth said, “Sachin Tendulkar is not available; he will be starting off with the New Zealand series. He obviously would like to extend his career. He will focus on Test cricket in a big way and must be aiming at the England series, followed by Australia.”

Asked about Yuvraj Singh’s future following his recovery from lung cancer treatment in the US, the selectors chairman replied, “Yuvraj won the World Cup for India, so there will always be a place for him when he is ready. The fact that he is practising shows a positive mindset.”

Other news (TOI, HT, DNA, Indian Express)

Team India camp in Chennai: The Indian team will have a conditioning camp in Chennai before they leave for Sri Lanka tour. It’s understood that the players, after a month’s break, want to get back into the groove and Chennai is one place where it doesn’t rain during this part of the year.  So, the BCCI has decided to host the camp, which is likely to start on July 16, at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. "In all probability, it will be a three-day camp and all the Sri Lanka bound players will be present," a BCCI official said. The pitch at the MAC showed glimpses of coming back to its best during the latter half of the Indian Premier Legaue and Dhoni & Co will get some decent practice in the middle under the guidance of Duncan Fletcher. 

Jhulan stars in 14-run win over England:
Jhulan Goswami wreaked havoc as Indian eves beat England by 14 runs in a low-scoring second ODI in Taunton on Wednesday to take 2-0 lead in the five-match series. Chasing a meagre target of 130, Goswami grabbed four for 17 in only 8.2 overs to bowl England out for only 115. After opting to field, England reduced India to 71 for nine before Amita Sharma (42, 87 balls, 2x4) and No 11 batsman Gouher Sultana (22, 53 balls, 1x4) added 58 runs for the 10th wicket, that proved decisive.

SLPL names Afridi, Gayle as icons:
West Indies opener Chris Gayle and Pakistan allrounder Shahid Afridi have been named as the two international icon players for the inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) that begins on August 10. Reports suggest that Gayle will represent Uva province, while Afridi will play for Nagenahira. Last week, Sri Lanka Cricket auctioned the seven Sri Lanka Premier League teams for an average price of 4.3 million dollars. A number of Indian companies are believed to have successfully bid for teams in the SLPL, highlighting the lure of the franchise model in cricket's largest market despite theBCCI's reluctance to allow Indian players to participate.

SL, Pak Test ends in draw: Kumar Sangakkara missed out on another double century as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 391 on Day Five of the second Test played against Pakistan at Colombo. Brief scores: Pakistan 551/6 decl in 147 overs & 100/2 decl in 18 overs drew with Sri Lanka 391 in 124.4 overs (Sangakkara 192; Junaid 5/73) & 86/2 in 22 overs