Pakistan’s Ajmal signs for Hampshire

Updated 21 December 2012
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Pakistan’s Ajmal signs for Hampshire

LONDON: English county Hampshire said on Friday that they have secured the services of Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal next season as a two-month replacement for Australia Twenty20 skipper George Bailey.
The 35-year-old Ajmal, who has taken 122 wickets in 23 Tests and was instrumental in Pakistan’s win over England in the United Arab Emirates earlier this year, will play in August and September when Bailey joins Australia’s limited-overs squad. Bailey is likely to be involved in Australia’s T20 internationals against visitors England.
“I am very pleased to be joining Hampshire to play in the County Championship,” said Ajmal, who has previously turned out for Worcestershire in the 2011 campaign. “I have always enjoyed playing in England and look forward to playing my part in helping Hampshire get promoted,” he added in a statement on the club’s website ageasbowl.com.
The southern English county start next season in the second division. The arrival of Ajmal — described by Hampshire manager Giles Smith as “one of the best bowlers in the world in all forms of the game — will be vital if young left-arm spinner Danny Briggs is also involved in the England-Australia ODIs.


Iranian fans attempt to disrupt Portugal’s sleep at hotel

Updated 25 June 2018
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Iranian fans attempt to disrupt Portugal’s sleep at hotel

  • Hundreds of Iranian fans spent several overnight hours surrounding the hotel where Portugal’s national team is based
  • Superstar Cristiano Ronaldo was filmed by Portuguese TV RTP late at night by the window using gestures to ask the Iranian fans to be silent

SARANSK: Hundreds of Iranian fans spent several overnight hours surrounding the hotel where Portugal’s national team is based, making loud noises in an attempt to disrupt their opponents’ sleep before a decisive World Cup match later Monday.
Superstar Cristiano Ronaldo was filmed by Portuguese TV RTP late at night by the window using gestures to ask the Iranian fans to be silent, but Monday morning there were still a few dozen of them playing loud music near the hotel in the Saransk city center.
Iran can only advance to the next stage of the World Cup if it beats the European champions. Portugal only needs a draw, but also aims to take the top position in Group B ahead of Spain.
Saransk police said they received their first calls about the noise about 11 p.m. Sunday, when a first wave of Iran fans arrived and started singing outside the hotel. That forced Ronaldo to show up, which convinced supporters to leave.
Then a second wave came and did not stop making noise for several hours. Police then blocked roads nearby, but the main avenue across the hotel was still open, which allowed Iran fans to keep their effort in smaller numbers.
Iran fan and IT consultant Mehdi Fayez arrived Monday morning after reading messages from supporters saying they needed to trouble Portugal to stand a better chance of winning the match.
“I love Ronaldo, I love Portugal, but this is a big game. We have to do all it takes,” a still joyful Fayez said, as he held an Iranian flag on the back of his head.
Montreh Fayoud, one of the several Iranian women that are attending their first World Cup, disagreed.
“We were coming back from dinner and saw all these Iranians here. When I found the reason, I decided to leave,” she said.
At about noon on Monday Portugal players had a quick walk around the hotel, but it is uncertain whether they will walk around the city as they did before other matches in Russia.