Pollard and Bond headline IPL auction

West Indies all-rounder Kieron Pollard and New Zealand paceman Shane Bond were the big winners at today's auction for the 2010 Indian Premier League.

Stay the night: Royal Gardenia, Bangalore

Bangalore's latest stopover is bright, airy and green in more ways than one. Minty Clinch explains

Important Artifacts..., By Leanne Shapton

The full title would take up half a column, for this innovative and intriguing novel in captioned photographs marches under the wordy banner of Important Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris, including Books, Street Fashion and Jewelry. It takes the form of a mock-auction catalogue from a Manhattan sales house, and purports to offer a miscellany of lots with explanatory notes – flower petals to claret bottles, knickers to sunglasses, books to menus, postcards to photos. All in some way mark the beginning, flourishing and fall of a New York romance from 2002 to 2006. It's a cute idea – Annie Hall (a sporadic allusion) meets confessional conceptual art – and Leanne Shapton brings it off in style.

England bowlers rule out IPL

England fast bowlers Stuart Broad and James Anderson have resisted the temptation to cash in on their Ashes-winning reputations by playing in next year's Indian Premier League.

India embraces eco-luxury with new hotel

Is there such a thing as an environmentally friendly, 5-star behemoth of a hotel in the heart of a city? Probably not. The ITC Royal Gardenia in Bengaluru, India, knows this, carefully choosing the term ‘Responsible Luxury’ to describe the ethos of their 55m high, 292-room citadel.

Kentucky beats Scotch whisky in world top 10

India joins global roll-call of best distillers as Bangalore spirit wins third place

Jacques of all trades, and the master too

Kallis is an old dog who has learnt new tricks thanks to T20 but blushes at Pietersen claim that he's the best ever

Indian nanny rented out baby to beggars

When Anamika Joshi came home from work in the evening, she could not understand why her seven-month-old son was so drowsy and lethargic. Then one day she came home early to discover her child missing and the nanny she had employed to look after him casually watching television.

Mark Steel: Royal Mail is to blame for our broken society (obviously)

We can already see the 'modernisation' the Government wants from posties

Trescothick flies home as stress returns

Somerset opener leaves Champions League in India after recurrence of illness

Franchise failings are laid bare by lack of team ethic

The Champions League was supposed to see the IPL heavyweights dominate, instead it is the long-established sides who are making the early running. Will Hawkes reports

Duminy kick-starts Champions League

A thrilling innings from JP Duminy led Cape Cobras to a surprise five-wicket victory over the Bangalore Royal Challengers last night in the first match of the Champions League. Cricket's latest Twenty20 competition got off to the perfect start after a sparkling opening ceremony as the South African hit a blistering 99 from 52 balls to chase down the home side's 180-4.

Grace Boyle: Flickering kerosene lamps on which rest the hopes of India's poor

I visited some villages in rural Karnataka this week, where people are living without electricity. After nightfall we drove to Mahime Village in Uttara Kannada, a coastal district of Karnataka State, and left the car at the side of the road. On foot we picked our way along a dirt path through the forest, splashed through a creek and uphill until we reached a house. The muted blue of the mud walls glimmered in the yellow light of the small kerosene lamps as we picked leeches off our feet and Sarojini Rama Naik, the wife of the house, burnt them with embers from the fire.

Kerala: life 'in the bowl'

Documenting the potential problems of climate change in southwestern India

Australian angle: Clarke comes of age in a fading side

Peter Roebuck of the Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne Age writes from Lord's
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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Vietnam
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Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there