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HONG KONG, October 28: Pace ace Javagal Srinath will spearhead India's bid for a breakthrough victory in the Cathay Pacific/Standard Chartered Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes this weekend (November 1-2).

With more than 230 Test wickets to his name, Srinath is widely regarded as one of the fastest bowlers his country has produced and his appearance at the Kowloon Cricket Club is certain to boost Indian prospects.

Although India are one of only three countries to have been represented at all nine editions of the world's premier Sixes event, they have not yet succeeded in having their name inscribed on the Butani Trophy that is awarded to the winners of the Cup competition.

This year, though, they look well set to mount a serious challenge for the US$80,000 first prize.

In addition to Srinath, the high-profile Indian squad includes a wealth of experience in the shape of Vinod Kambli, a veteran of 104 One-Day Internationals. Kambli has been nominated as captain of the team.

They will be supported four men who performed for their country in last year's Sixes when India defeated South Africa to claim third place in the Cup – talented spinner Nikhil Chopra, left-handed batsmen Rohan Gavaskar and Hrishikesh Kanitkar, and hard-hitting right-hander Reetinder Sodhi.

Opening batsman Akash Chopra, who made an encouraging start to his Test career with steady innings in each of his four visits to the crease against New Zealand in the past three weeks, was due to complete the squad but has been forced to withdraw through injury. The final member of the team will be confirmed in the next 48hours.

Based on their performances at the past two Sixes, India have been seeded fourth this year, behind favourites Pakistan, England and South Africa.

Drawn in Pool 1, they will open their 2003 campaign against hosts Hong Kong before squaring up to New Zealand.

The highlight of day one (Saturday, November 1), though, is likely to come in mid-afternoon when India tackle arch-rivals Pakistan in an intriguing match-up that is certain to stir the emotions – and determine the final Pool 1 standings.

The top two teams from Pool 1 will qualify for the competition knockout stages along with the top two from Pool 2, which comprises England, South Africa, Sri Lanka and tournament debutants Kenya. The bottom two teams in each of the pools compete for the Plate.

Two-day ticket prices for the 2003 Cathay Pacific/Standard Chartered Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes have been set at HK$380 for adults and HK$200 for children under the age of 15.

Games are played in five-over innings, with each team member, other than the wicket-keeper, bowling one over.

India squad: Nikhil Chopra, Rohan Gavaskar, Vinod Kambli (captain), Hrishikesh Kanitkar, Reetinder Sodhi, Javagal Srinath.

The 2003 Cathay Pacific/Standard Chartered Hong Kong International Cricket Sixes will take place at Kowloon Cricket Club, 10 Cox's Road, Kowloon on November 1-2. Two-day passes cost HK$380 for adults and HK$200 for children under 15, and are on sale through Cityline ( as well as at the following outlets:

  • Hong Kong Cricket Club (137 Wong Nai Chung Gap Road, Happy Valley, 2574 6266);
  • Kowloon Cricket Club (10 Cox's Road, Jordan, 2367 4141);
  • Dot Cod Seafood Restaurant & Oyster Bar (Prince's Building, Central 2810 6988);
  • Hong Kong Cricket Association (Room 1019 Sports House, 1 Stadium Path, So Kon Po, 2504 8102).

Provided by CCIL/Hong Kong Cricket Association. For further information, please contact Danny Lai at (852) 2504-8102.

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