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Archive for October 2009

All square against India

The seven match one day international series is now pegged at 1-all after India won the second match this morning.

Australia won the first match of the series which had a thrilling end but still managed to win by four runs.

I think this an evenly balanced series and it could be decided near the end of the series.

In the last seven match series Australia played against England I lost interest after a few matches because you could see that it was one sided and England only managed to snare a win in the last match.

Meanwhile in the Twenty20 Champions League final, NSW had a 41-run win over Trinidad & Tobago to claim the inaugural trophy.

It was good to see another cricket trophy come to Australia after Australia won the ICC Champions Trophy earlier this month.

In the meantime I am hoping that Victoria will qualify again for the tournament next year.

Poor start for Venus

Venus Williams had a poor start at the Sony Ericsson Championships in Doha after she lost to Elena Dementieva in three sets.

Venus is the defending champion in this season ending tournament and she got the first set but then went on to lose the tight second set.

There are two groups of four and the Williams sisters plus Svetlana Kuznetsova and Dementieva are in one group.

The other group comprises of current world number one Dinara Safina plus Victoria Azarenka, Caroline Wozniacki and Jelena Jankovic.

Venus' next match is against Serena and she will need to win that one in order to reach the semis. The two top players in each group get semi-final berths.

In other matches Serena beat Kuznetsova whilst Azarenka overcame former world number one Jankovic.

Australian team in Twenty20 final

There will be an Australian team in the Champions League Twenty20 final because Victoria is going to play New South Wales in the semis.

Victoria won its group and will meet the Blues who finished runners up in their group, League A.

The other semi-final match will be between Cape Cobras and Trinidad and Tobago.

I thought that the Cobras were going to win League A but their loss to the Delhi Daredevils meant that the Bush rangers won that group.

I hope that the Vics will win so that they feature in the final and once in the final I think it will anybody's game. Either way its good to see that an Australian team will be in the final and cup could be coming Down Under.

Button wraps up title

Brawn GP's Jenson Button wrapped up his first F1 championship title after finishing fifth in the Brazilian Grand Prix.

At the start of the race everything looked set for Rubens Barrichello after snatching pole but his pole advantage did not last long after Mark Webber took the first position after the first pit stops and then a puncture later in the race meant that this was not going to be his race.

One can say that Button won the championship in the first four races when he started so strongly but since then he has been consistently picking points here and there without necessarily winning the race.

Now with a total 89 points and with Sebastian Vettel on 74 and his team-mate Barrichello on 72, Button will go to the last race with nothing much to fight for as his team also won the constructors championship.

I think that its also a big achievement for a team in its first year to have won both the drivers and constructors' championnships.

Back to the race itself, Webber won his second career race after starting second on the grid. Joining him on the podium were Robert Kubica and Lewis Hamilton.

I think its worthwhile to point out that Hamilton started the race in 17th place and managed to finish third and also it was good just to see a BMW Sauber driver on the podium.

In fourth place was Vettel who can now fight for second place in the last race in Abu Dhabi.

Kimi Raikkonen finished sixth and the last two points places went to Torro Rosso Ferrari's Sebastien Buemi and then Barrichello.

Giancarlo Fisichella has got more race to score a point in a Ferrari after finishing tenth at Interlagos.

The last race of the season will the Abu Dhabi Grand prix.

Stosur wins maiden title

At last Samantha Stosur has won a maiden WTA Tour title after beating Francesca Schiavone in straights in the final of the Japan Open.

Stosur has played very well in this tournament and I thought that she was going to struggle and possibly to Caroline Wozniacki in the semis. But she came through and she dropped the only set in the whole tournament.

This was Stosur's sixth WTA Tour final and so she has made it on her sixth attempt which is not too bad.

I hope this is the start of many titles and this is certainly very good for Australian tennis.

MDC disengages from Zanu PF

Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change(MDC) has disengaged from Zanu PF after the arrest of Senator Roy Bennett.

I think that this was the right decision to take especially given the way Zanu PF continues to go on ahead as if MDC does not exist.

MDC won the last elections and should therefore be ruling Zimbabwe right now on its own right and the coalition actually benefits Zanu PF who lost the elections.

Now if you look at it you would think that it is Zanu PF who won the election.

I think the MDC needs to be respected as an equal partner in this unity government arrangement which was arranged by SADC more to please Robert Mugabe than anybody else.

This idea that people are arrested and then harassed then later on released with no charges should stop. It has happened again and again and people are put under stress for no apparent reason.

In the case of Bennett why can't he be tried quickly and if the courts find him guilty then let it be so and if he is innocent then he take his position as Deputy Minister.

I think the idea is to make sure that this takes as long as possible to frustrate the MDC but this trick has been played before and does not surprise anybody.

Also the idea of treating MDC Deputy Ministers like they don't exist should stop. Its sad to read that Jameson Timba saying he knows what happens in his own ministry through reading the newspaper like everybody else and yet he is the deputy minister.

I like it when Vice President Arthur Mutambara says that 'Mugabe must remember that he is President because of the Global Political Agreement.' Without it he would be leading just his party and nothing else.

I hope that this latest move by the MDC will move SADC into action. This transitional arrangement must not be allowed to last a long time because Zimbabweans deserve to choose their own government and not go with this SADC arrangement.

Williams to end Toyota partnership

Williams F1 team announced this week that they will cease their engine partnership with Toyota at the end of this season.

I think that this season Williams have done reasonably well and at the moment the team has 34.5 points in the constructors' championship.

All those points have been scored by Nico Rosberg with Kazumi Nakajima failing to score a single so far.

Also this week there has been talk of Brawn GP driver Rubens Barrichello joining Williams next season.

That would be good as that could enable them to have two drivers scoring points but I think it will also depend on where they will source their engine and how quickly they get to grips with it.

Bushrangers cruising well

The Victorian Bushrangers beat the Royal Challengers Bangalore by seven wickets in their opening second round match.

I have been following with interest the progress of the Bushrangers in the inaugral Champions League Twenty20 tournament and its good to see that they on the brink of reaching the semis.

In their first match of the tournament, the Bushrangers also to beat another Indian Premier League(IPL) side the Delhi Daredevils.

Its also good to see that New South Wales reached the second round as well and in their next match tonight they will play Trinidad and Tobago.

I thought that the IPL teams would be the dominant force in this tournament but it looks like its not going to be that way.

Australia retains ICC Champions Trophy

Australia retained the ICC Champions Trophy after beating New Zealand by six wickets.

Shane Watson was probably the difference between the two teams as he scored an unbeaten 105.

In the semis against England he had been even more impressive scoring a superb 136 for a resounding victory over England.

I think this has been a largely interesting tournament with lots of surprising results along the way.

I was surprised by India and Sri Lanka's performance. The hosts South Africa also performed poorly when I expected them at least to make the semis.

Sri Lanka were also off their usual best as they failed to make an impact at this tournament.

It was good to see Australia continuing with its form from the one day international series in England which Australia won 6-1.

After reaching the semis I think England were unfortunate to meet Australia again because I think that had they met another team chances are high they would reached the final.

Zanu PF embrace Moyo again

Zanu PF has readmitted Prof. Jonathan Moyo after expelling some him from the party five years ago.

While I think this is very good move for Moyo, I wonder how good and beneficial it is for Zanu PF.

Moyo who is the independent Member of Parliament for Tsholotsho North, has been aligning himself with the former ruling party for some time with the articles he has been writing.

And I think he thinks for some reason now is the right time to rejoin the party and I wonder what agenda he has this time.

He comes to Zanu PF in a totally different environment of the Government of National Unity(GNU) but I think he is going to place himself in such a way that he rises to the very top of Zanu PF.

Zanu PF should be trying to win the hearts and minds of the people after losing the last election and I don't think Moyo is not the person to do so.

I will watching to see what happens in the next few months and especially with the Zanu PF congress coming soon and see whether Moyo will be elevated once again to the higher echelons of the party.

Vettel keeps himself in contention

Sebastian Vettel kept himself in contention for the F1 title after winning the Japanese Grand prix over the weekend.

I thought Vettel had a superb drive dominating from start to finish and he was also the pole setter.

The current leader Jenson Button could only get a point and I think it could have been worse had Adrian Sutil and Heikki Kovalainen not collided.

I think Button still has a big chance of winning and lets remember that he was pushed back five places after qualifying.

He can win the title in Brazil if he finishes third or better or Vettel finishes lower than second and Rubens Barrichello finishes lower than fourth or alternatively if he outscores Barrichello by four points.

So thats a whole heap of combinations but as we saw in Japan there can so some surprise spoilers.

Another huge achievement in the race was seeing Toyota's Jarno Trulli finishing ahead of current champion Lewis Hamilton. It was a huge result for Toyota especially in Japan.

Just outside the podium places was Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen who will be leaving the team at the end of the season to be replaced by Fernando Alonso.

In fifth place was Williams' Nico Rosberg and then followed by Nick Heidfeld which is a good result for BMW Sauber given that they have been struggling this whole season.

The last two points places went to Brawn with Barrichello ahead of Button.

Giancarlo Fisichella was 12th this time and he has now two races to score points for Ferrari.

This was a race to forget for Mark Webber as he finished last for the cars that finished the race.

The next race will be in Brazil and so lets waits and see who will fall out of the championship race.