New Zealand quickie Chris Martin broke Rahul Dravid’s resistance (35 off 114 balls) and scalped him with the help of a Franklin catch on Day 1 of the final Test.

Earlier, India lost three wickets – Tendulkar (62), Laxman (4) and Yuvraj (9) in the second session to get reduced to 190/5. Jesse Ryder trapped Yuvraj while, Tim Southee bagged the prized wicket of Laxman with the help of a McIntosh catch at slips.

Sachin Tendulkar looked in form but could not sustain his efficient innings and fell to Kiwi pacer Martin. He hit 53rd Test half-century of his career to take India past 150-run mark.

Put into bat by NZ, India lost its openers Gambhir (23) and Sehwag (48) in the first session to reach 101/2 at lunch. James Franklin and Ian O’Brien got the breakthrough for their side to remove dangerous looking Delhi batsmen.

Sachin Tendulkar came in for Gambhir while Sehwag made way for Rahul Dravid, who was also instrumental in saving 2nd Test for the visitors.

Gambhir and Sehwag looked easy with the bat in the first hour to take India past first fifty runs without any loss of wicket.

New Zealand skipper Daniel Vettori won the toss and put India to bat. For the hosts, Daniel Flynn and Tim Southee made it to the playing eleven while Dhoni, who missed the 2nd Test due to his back injury, stood beside Vettori for the toss to lead India once again.

As much as India are keen to score their first series triumph here since 1967-68, the Kiwis, whose pride has been pricked at home, are equally determined to save the series and win back the support of the disenchanted local fans.

The Kiwis are emboldened by their record at the Basin Reserve track, where they have trounced India in four successive Tests. Though they had huffed and puffed to barely snare four Indian wicket in the second innings at Napier, they believe that they have the ammunition to bowl out the formidable Indian batting twice in this match.

New Zealand team:
Tim McIntosh, Martin Guptill, Daniel Flynn, Ross Taylor, Jesse Ryder, James Franklin, Brendon McCullum (wk), Daniel Vettori (capt), Tim Southee, Iain O’Brien, Chris Martin

India team:
Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt & wk), Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan, Ishant Sharma, Munaf Patel


More than two months after Barack Obama laced his hand on the Bible and was sworn in as president of the United States, 11 per cent of Americans still think he is a Muslim, a poll suggested on Thursday.

White evangelical Protestants and Republicans were the most likely to say Obama — who has an Arabic middle name — was Muslim in response to the poll question: “Do you happen to know what Barack Obama’s religion is?”

Nearly one in five white evangelical Protestants and 17 per cent of the Republicans who took part in the telephone poll of 1,308 adults, which was conducted by Pew Research from March 9-12, said they thought Obama was Muslim.

Fewer than half in each group — 38 per cent of white evangelicals and 46 per cent of Republicans — correctly identified him as Christian.

Even among Democrats, only 55 per cent correctly identified Obama as a Christian; seven per cent thought he was Muslim.

Poll respondents with a university degree scored highest — 68 per cent — in correctly identifying the Democratic president’s religious affiliation as Christian.

A. R. Rahman has received an invitation he would remember for a very long time to come. The music wizard will be opening Oscar Night on February 22 with a song that features in ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ ‘Jai Ho’. Singer Sukhwinder Singh would accompany Rahman on stage.

Latest reports reveal that Rahman is altering the song a bit so that it will be in perfect synchronization with the live orchestration that will accompany his song. The musician as already reported has been nominated in three categories and is considered a front runner to win the highly coveted Oscar. ‘Jai Ho’ and ‘O Saaya’ have been nominated in the original song category and Rahman has been nominated in the Best original Score category.

Noted lyricist Gulzar is also expected to be present with his team when the famous ceremony unfolds.

Rahman being invited to perform is widely considered as a giant leap by an Indian musician especially because the performance is expected to enthrall global audiences. Indian music would most certainly be on the most desirable list among worldwide music lovers.

After two films, ‘Kaanal Neer’ and ‘Nayagan’, J K Riteesh has turned his attention towards the television industry. According to reports, the ‘actor’ is getting ready to produce a mega serial with actress Meena in the lead.

It is said that the daily soap titled ‘Aandal’ will be aired on Kalaignar TV in a prime time slot. Ranjithji, who had worked as an assistant director in films like ‘Arasu’ and ‘Gambeeram’ will direct the serial.

Meanwhile, Ritheesh, whose last Nayagan saw a 100-day run in a couple of theatres in Chennai, is getting ready for his next film, tentatively titled ‘Vettai Puli’.

It would be not be like a regular sans-bahu soap show. It would be totally different, says sources close to Ritheesh.

Karthik changes path

January 29, 2009

He started his career with bang in Tamil cinema. Introduced by Bharathiraja in ‘Alaigal Oivadhillai’, actor Karthik dominated the Tamil cinema as its only popular ‘romantic’ boy for the next two decades.

However due to various reasons, he faded out of the scene and even tried to establish a career in politics but in vain. However, Karthik is back to do what he knows the best. Karthik seems to have decided to follow the footsteps of his contemporary and veteran actor Prabhu, who is doing character roles.

Karthik, who is currently playing an important role in Mani Ratnam’s ‘Ravana’, will appear as Jayam Ravi’s dad in a yet-to-be-titled film which is expected to begin in April.

Mac and Iphone Games

January 29, 2009

Playing video games cant be considered childish as nowadays there are even elder people and old age people play games. This is because it amidst the hectic and mechanical life video games keeps us away from work tensions and relaxes us atleast for an hour or two. Nowadays technology has developed a lot and one can even play games in his i-pod and mac notebooks anywhere and at anytime.

For downloading games there are only very few great websites and one among them is the one which I saw yesterday. For all types of mac games one can visit this website and download them and enjoy. Many people know about the interesting solitaire for mac games which is also available here. Here they not only have games for mac computers, they even have iphone games. Great isn’t it..?? So for all gamers out there download loads and loads of games here and play. Enjoy.

Kate Winslet annoyed her children by practicing her German accent at home.

The “The Reader” star – who plays a former Nazi guard in the film – was told to drop the fake voice when she was around her two kids and speak in her normal British accent.

Kate said: “They got mightily fed up with me reading bedtime stories with a German accent. They said, ‘Mom, just be plain. Don’t do any funny stuff like voices. Just be regular.'”

“Then I had to say, ‘But, I’m not regular and I’m never going to be regular. When you’re a teenager you’re going to know that it’s cool.'”

The 33-year-old actress – who has been nominated for an Oscar for her role in the Holocaust drama – has also revealed how her children mistook her for their grandmother when she was made up to look like an old lady in some scenes.

Kate – who an eight-year-old daughter, Mia, from a previous relationship, and a five-year-old son Joe with her husband Sam Mendes – added to Britain’s The Sun newspaper: “They saw the pictures and said, ‘Is that Nana?’ I said, ‘No, it’s me.’ ‘Oh, you look yucky.'”

“I took it as a compliment that they genuinely thought I looked old. Needless to say, I didn’t tell my mother.”