Cricket: Records fall for Indian pair

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The Independent Online
INDIA'S SAURAV GANGULY and Rahul Dravid tore into Sri Lanka's attack at Taunton yesterday, both hammering career-best one-day centuries and sharing a record partnership of 318 in their World Cup Group A match.

India compiled 373 for 6 in their 50 overs as Dravid hit 145, his second consecutive century, and Ganguly reached 183 in one of the most exhilarating displays of batting in the 24-year history of the competition.

The second-wicket pair made the most of a flat pitch and short boundaries to beat the previous best for any wicket in a one-day international - 275 by India's Mohammad Azharuddin and Ajay Jadeja against Zimbabwe in 1997-98.

The previous highest for any wicket in the World Cup was an unbroken third-wicket stand of 237 between Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar against Kenya at Bristol last Sunday.

When Dravid was eventually run out he had made his 145 off 129 balls with 17 fours and a six, becoming only the second batsman in World Cup history, after Australia's Mark Waugh on the sub-continent in 1996, to score consecutive centuries in a single tournament.

Ganguly finally fell to a catch on the long-on boundary in the last over, his 183 coming from 158 balls and containing 17 fours and seven sixes.

In Barrackpur, near Calcutta, eight people were arrested while allegedly settling claims for bets during the Group B match between New Zealand and the West Indies, police said.

Police seized 14 mobile phones, two lap-top computers, cash cards, television sets and 16,000 rupees (pounds 235) from them. "The bookies were earning millions of rupees from bets placed in every match in the World Cup," a police official said, adding that they were alerted by locals who spotted a group of strangers with mobile telephones on Tuesday.

"Mobile phones are very unusual for this area," district magistrate Arun Mishra said.

In New Delhi, police arrested three people on Tuesday for alleged betting on cricket matches and seized nine mobile phones along with 15,000 rupees of stake money.

Betting is illegal in India, except on horse racing. Many Indians bet regularly, often in large amounts placed on trust.