Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Tuesday's Cricket World Cup gossip

England's Ian Bell has hailed the influence of batting coach Graham Gooch, saying he'd wished he'd worked with the former Test opener earlier in his career. "He is just an incredible guy who adds a lot of experience and knowledge into our group and the way he played in World Cups in the past in the sub-continent, the experience he passes on to us is really important," said Bell.

Sri Lankan spinner Muttiah Muralitharan - Test cricket's record wicket taker - has pulled out of plans to mentor young spin bowlers in Australia. The 38-year-old had been due to coach at the Brisbane-based Australia Centre of Excellence in June but has now decided to play Twenty20 cricket in India and England.

Ireland's World Cup cricketers have agreed to undergo a charity makeover ahead of tomorrow's group B match with England. Members of the Irish squad will take part in 'Shave or Dye 2011', a campaign in aid of Irish Cancer Society which is bidding to raise one million euros through a number of similar events in the coming weeks. Players can choose to either shave their head or dye their hair green.

The Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS) may have its critics but Bangladesh players say it helps in winning mind games even if the appeal is rejected. "You can always make the batsman nervous," said seam bowler Shafiul Islam.

Pakistan pace bowler Shoaib Akhtar says the "hurt" suffered by his side during the last year due to the spot-fixing controversy can spur them on in the World Cup. "We are a hurt side," said Shoaib. "Now, we are here to hurt others."

West Indies bowler Kemar Roach - who took a hat-trick in the 215-run win over the Netherlands on Monday - says his side have nothing to fear when they face Bangladesh on Friday, despite the Tigers being above them in the current one-day rankings. "We'll go there on a high," said Roach. "Bangladesh are an improving team but we are better than them."

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