Sport

What a fine mess English cricket finds itself in. Yet for supporters of a certain age, the last two months in Australia have just been a return to normal service.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni: 'the same people are asking questions but not giving any solutions'

Dhoni keeps calm and carries on as answers become more elusive

The Indian Angle: Replacing legends is going to be much tougher than had been anticipated

Kevin Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen helps England close on 199 after poor start to Fourth Test

England 199-5:  Latest report from the fourth Test between England and India

Alastair Cook: The England captain has reached 23 Test hundreds at 27 years of age

Praise pours in for 'amazing' Alastair Cook

Captain breaks 73-year record for England centuries to earn plaudits from across the cricketing world

MS Dhoni is India’s first regular wicketkeeper captain
Alastair Cook

Alastair Cook rallies his troops by raising the standard of defiance

He stood proud and defiant and glorious. Alastair Cook, the new captain of England, repelled India in the first Test for hour after hour, over after over, ball after ball. As each of those in turn was ticked off, the task he was  embarked in Ahmedabad on left the land of make-believe for the country of the merely fanciful.

Spin twins' threat overlooked even by India

In the lead-up to the England series, a certain distasteful fervour underpinned the advertising campaigns which attempted to drum up television audiences. There was an unholy obsession with the revenge theme, with little thought to the fact that while Andrew Strauss's England handed out a 4-0 thrashing in the summer of 2011, this team was all Alastair Cook's. The concerted attempt to render England's practice matches meaningless, by hiding specialist spinners and providing misleading batting surfaces, ensured that the focus then shifted to England's foibles against spin.

England falter against India's spin to follow on at 191 on third day of first Test

First Test day three: India 521-8 dec v England 191 & 111-0

Freddie Flintoff trains under the watchful eye of Barry McGuigan

Flintoff reveals how he was nearly floored by an eating disorder

Andrew Flintoff was bullied at school and developed an eating disorder as he battled weight issues during his Test cricket career. These were the shock themes to emerge from a documentary to be broadcast in the run-up to his professional boxing debut at the end of the month.

You Write the Caption - 16/11/12

Win a bottle of wine

MS Dhoni hails 'strong character' of Yuvraj Singh after winning his battle with cancer

MS Dhoni today paid tribute to Yuvraj Singh as the Indian prepares to return to Test cricket after winning his battle with cancer.

Jonathan Trott ton the highlight as England complete Test warm-up in India

Haryana 334 & 133-6 drew with England 521 & 254-7

England captain Alastair Cook (right) speaks with bowler Monty Panesar

England labour for wickets against Haryana

England encountered more reminders of the perils of an India tour as they laboured for their wickets against Haryana.

England batsman Kevin Pietersen ducks to avoid a ball

Nick Compton passes Test as Kevin Pietersen does his talking with ton in the middle

Opener books England berth for India clash and Pietersen refuses to comment after his fireworks

Pat finish: Samit Patel consoles Jonny Bairstow after he was out for a fine 118 in England’s warm-up game yesterday

Bairstow answers wrong question

England XI 338-6 v Mumbai A: His century shows England's back-up middle order is strong but Compton and Root fail to make their case as opener

Jonny Bairstow and Eoin Morgan shine for England in Mumbai

Jonny Bairstow and Eoin Morgan proved all is well with England's back-up middle order - but the tourists are still none the wiser about the identity of Alastair Cook's new Test opening partner.

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Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
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We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
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Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
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Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
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Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
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The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
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Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star