Wolverhampton, Jan 3 (AP/UNB) — Jordan Ayew and Luka Milivojevic scored late to give Crystal Palace a 2-0 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Wednesday in the Premier League.
Palace had failed to score in two straight games since stunning Manchester City 3-2 on Dec. 22, but Ayew finally ended the drought in the 83rd minute after Patrick Van Aanholt's mishit shot fell to him in the box.
Ruben Neves nearly equalized for Wolves in injury time but goalkeeper Vicente Guaita palmed his deflected drive wide and Milivojevic then made sure of the win from the penalty spot after Ryan Bennett fouled Wilfried Zaha.
It was another frustrating night for Zaha, whose own goal drought extended to 14 games, while Wolves looked tired after their 3-1 win over Tottenham on Saturday and struggled to create quality chances.
Palace manager Roy Hodgson acknowledged after the game that the club is still looking for striking options in the January transfer window after a loan move for Liverpool's Dominic Solanke collapsed.
The Eagles have scored just 19 times in 21 Premier League games this season but pulled out of the move for Solanke because of concerns over his fitness.
"It seems to be (dead). It was a club decision and we were interested but it turns out there were other factors involved and it wasn't the right moment," Hodgson said. "If there are other players the club can bring in I won't be adverse to that because we have a very small squad and we don't have a lot to back us up."
Palace stayed in 14th place with 22 points, seven points behind Wolves in ninth place.
Mount Maunganui, Jan 3 (AP/UNB) — New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat Thursday in the first of three one-day cricket internationals against Sri Lanka.
Both teams are beginning in earnest their build-up to the ICC World Cup in England later this year. New Zealand has 12 one-day internationals during its domestic season to help its preparation.
Former World Cup champions Sri Lanka have dropped to eighth on world rankings and are hoping to recover some of their old form in the 50-over game.
"We haven't been consistent," captain Lasith Malinga said. "Now is the time to improve and go ahead and do our best for the team."
The pitch at the Bay Oval had a light covering of grass but still looked to be good for batting.
New Zealand named wicketkeeper Tim Seifert to make his ODI debut in place of Tom Latham who is being rested. Opener Martin Guptill returns to the lineup after an absence of more than a year with injury.
Matt Henry and Lockie Ferguson join Trent Boult as New Zealand's seamers while Tim Southee and Doug Bracewell sit out the first match of the series.
Sri Lanka retained batsmen Danushka Gunathilaka and Dinesh Chandimal from its test lineup and favored seamer Nuwan Pradeep over Dushmantha Chameera.
New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson (captain), Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, Tim Seifert, James Neesham, Ish Sodhi, Matt Henry, Trent Boult, Lockie Ferguson.
Sri Lanka: Danushka Gunathilaka, Niroshan Dickwella, Dinesh Chanimal, Kusal Mendis, Kusal Perera, Asela Gunaratne, Seekuge Prasanna, Thisara Perera, Lakshan Sandakan, Nuwan Pradeep, Lasith Malinga (captain).
Umpires: Chris Brown and Paul Wilson, New Zealand.
TV umpire: Richard Illingworth, England. Match referee: Richie Richardson, West Indies.
Sydney, Jan 3 (AP/UNB) — Cheteshwar Pujara scored his third century of the tour and India took a big step towards winning a series in Australia for the first time as it reached 303-4 at the end of day one of the fourth and final test against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Pujara, with 458 runs at an average of 76.3, has been the stand-out batsman of the series and he proved immovable once again, reaching his 18th century in 68 tests in a near flawless batting display which nullified Australia's attack on Thursday.
At stumps, Pujara was unbeaten on 130 off 250 balls with 16 boundaries with Hanuma Vihari 39 not out, sharing a 75-run partnership.
Pujara was ably supported by Mayank Agarwal (77), who scored his second 50 in as many matches as part of a 112-run partnership, as India profited from winning the toss and batting on a green-tinged SCG pitch.
Josh Hazlewood led the host's attack with two wickets including the prize-wicket of India captain Virat Kohli, who gloved a short ball through to Tim Paine when on 23.
Hazlewood finished the day with 2-51, after also claiming Lokesh Rahul (9) caught in the slips in his first over of the day.
Agarwal continued his impressive introduction to test cricket with another half century. Watchful in the morning session, Agarwal opened up after lunch and raced to 77, surpassing his previous best of 76 on debut in Melbourne, before trying one big shot too many off Lyon (1-88) to hole out to Mitchell Starc at long on. Agarwal's 77 came off 112 balls with seven boundaries and two sixes.
Agarwal's departure brought Kohli to the crease and the India captain was welcomed by boos by many in the 33,678-strong SCG crowd. The crowd's reception didn't appear to faze Kohli has he punched a blistering cover drive for four off Hazlewood to get off the mark.
Pujara and Kohli raised an unbroken 50-run partnership by tea in what was appearing an ominous sign for Australia, but Hazlewood struck with the fifth ball after the break, catching Kohli on the gloves as the ball passed down the leg side and was caught by a diving Paine.
Ajinkya Rahane then joined Pujara and looked comfortable in reaching 18 before he received a sharp, rising delivery from Starc (1-75) which he edged through for Paine's third catch of the innings to have India at 228-4.
Shortly after, Pujara reached his century off 199 balls with a boundary off Starc to fine leg. He raised both arms in celebration towards his Indian teammates in the Members Pavilion before embracing batting-partner Vihari.
It was Pujara's third century of this series after he scored 123 in the first test at Adelaide, followed by 106 last week in Melbourne. It is the first time the 30-year-old has scored three hundreds in a series.
Both teams made two changes from the third test with India bringing in Rahul for Rohit Sharma, who is absent after the birth of his first child, and spinner Kuldeep Yadav for seamer Ishant Sharma.
Australia recalled Peter Handscomb for the out-of-sorts Aaron Finch and dropped Mitch Marsh for leg-spinning allrounder Marnus Labuschagne.
India leads the four-test series 2-1 after wins in the first test at Adelaide by 31 runs and last week's Boxing Day test to retain the Border-Gavaskar trophy.
Australia won the second test in Perth by 146 runs.
Dhaka, Jan 2 (UNB) - Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hassan Papon on Wednesday termed the victory of Bangladesh ODI captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza in Sunday’s national election as a ‘big achievement’.
Nazmul, who was also elected as a parliament member from Kishoreganj-6 constituency, came up with the remarks while talking to reporters at his Beximco office.
Mashrafe won the election from Narail-2 parliamentary seat by a big margin as he got more than 96 percent of cast votes.
“It’s (Mashrafe’s win) a big thing. I think it’s the first instance of such an achievement in the history. I never heard someone to play in international cricket or lead a team after being elected a member of parliament. So, it’ll be something new and I’m excited about it,” the BCB chief said.
“You should remember that Mashrafe is very serious about his political future. He is not a man to think about his own gain. His lone focus is on the development of his constituency. But at the same time, he is focused on his cricket. There’s no doubt about it. His seriousness about the game is still here,” he added.
Nazmul also said he wants fair and flawless umpiring in the domestic cricket. “We’ve received a lot of allegations about erroneous umpiring in the domestic cricket in the last few years. But now, we want to take a stern stance against it.”
Some media reports suggested irregularities in the domestic cricket recently that revealed biased umpiring and forceful activities on the players to fix cricket match.
Nazmul said they will not tolerate this kind of wrongdoings in future. “We want to resolve the issues from the higher end, and that is umpiring. For the development of domestic cricket, we need to ensure quality umpiring in the domestic cricket, especially at the first, second and third divisional game.”
“But it’ll take time to resolve it. I’ll sit with umpires and club officials soon to discuss the issue,” the BCB president added.
Dhaka, Jan 2 (UNB) - Tickets for the Dhaka matches of the 6th edition of the UCB Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) will go on sale on Thursday.
Tickets will be available from 9am to 6pm in two booths -- Suhrawardy Indoor Stadium in Mirpur and adjacent to Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium gate-1.
The ticket sales for the Dhaka 2nd phase will start on January 20 while that of the 3rd phase on January 31.
The sales of tickets for the Sylhet phase will begin on January 14 at the Sylhet Divisional Stadium/Sylhet International Cricket Stadium.
Tickets for the Chattogram phase will start on January 24 at MA Aziz Stadium and Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium booths.
Besides, online tickets will also be available at shohoz.com and Ucash banking platforms.
Rates of tickets for league basis matches are as follows:
Gallery ticket (regular): Tk 200, gallery ticket shed-Tk 300, Club House Tk 500, VIP Stand Tk 500 and Grand Stand Tk 2,000 each.
Ticket rates for eliminators and qualifiers will be announced later.
The same ticket price is applicable for relevant categories for matches at ZACS in Chittagong and SICS in Sylhet.