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It is highly unlikely that the thrashing which India received in England a few months back would be atoned for any time soon. Not only did India lose their No.1 Test status in the most embarrassing manner possible – a 0-4 whitewash – they were battered beyond recognition; losing a few players to injuries in the process.As India get ready for the first of the three-Test series against the West Indies, starting here at the Ferozeshah Kotla on Sunday, the focus seems to be more on the larger picture than the immediate target. After the chinks in India’s armour were laid bare over two months of English summer, it is time to mend them one by one and the Test series against West Indies gives Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s team a chance to start the recovery process.The first Test sees the return from injury of Virender Sehwag (shoulder), Yuvraj Singh (finger), Ishant Sharma (ankle) and Sachin Tendulkar (toe). After a long time, India would be fielding what looks like a fully-fit side, with only bowlers Zaheer Khan and Munaf Patel being the ones missing out due to lack of fitness.And given that the opponents are the West Indies, every conversation regarding the match is invariably veering towards Tendulkar’s long-awaited 100th century at the international level. The 38-year-old failed to reach the mark during the four Tests in England, but there now seemsto be an air of inevitability around the feat. However, this being Test cricket, nothing can be taken for granted and West Indies captain Darren Sammy has assured he will do everything in his capacity to stop the Mumbai batsman from reaching the three-figure mark.advertisementThough the talking points of the Test are a strong Indian batting and a weak West Indies squad, the new-look Indian attack gives a chance to see if there are bowlers who can take 20 wickets. Paceman Ishant Sharma and left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha are the only bowlers who have played a Test.Fast bowlers Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron and spinners R Ashwin and Rahul Sharma are awaiting their Test caps. Among these, Dhoni would hope to find a combinationthat would not only take wickets this series, but also give options to the team management when the Australian tour arrives at the end of the year. In all likelihood, Ashwin should make the cut given that he has outdone Harbhajan Singh, not included in the squad, for most of the season.The batting looks rock solid. Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir will renew their partnership at the top of the order, with Rahul Dravid, Tendulkar and VVS Laxman forming the backbone of the team. The next spot could be a toss-up between Virat Kohli and Yuvraj Singh, with skipper Dhoni and four bowlers to follow.It will be interesting to see if Dhoni decided to go with two pacers and two spinners or three fast bowlers and a spinner, with Yuvraj as a possible fifth bowler.For the West Indies, it will be about working on the gains they made during the home series this year, where they ran the Indians close and only lost 0-1. And in Jamaica, India were 85 for six on the first day, forced to fight tooth and nail to win.The Caribbean side will be banking on their bowling attack, comprising fast bowlers Kemar Roach, Fidel Edwards, Ravi Rampaul and leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo, to put a leash on the Indian line-up and then hope their batting makes the most of the untested bowling.The pitch at the Ferozeshah Kotla is expected to be a typical sub-continental one, with spinners likely to come into play by Day Three. However, given that the Capital has been experiencing a fair amount of smog and cloud cover for the past few days, there could be a few stoppages in play due to bad light.
Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the information technology (IT) services arm of the Tata Group, is setting up a large software development campus in Nagpur that will have a capacity to accommodate over 16,000 IT professionals.This new campus is being set up at an investment of more than Rs 1,200 crore. In the first phase, TCS is investing Rs 600 crore, the company said.The state-of-the-art campus will be located on a 54-acre land in the Mihan SEZ on the outskirts of Nagpur near the airport. All the facilities in this campus would be built with a strong environment-friendly design, TCS said.Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Monday laid the foundation stone for Phase-I of the campus.The campus will be built in two phases with Phase-I containing 8,200 seats for IT services and BPO services. Phase-II will be of the similar size.Built with locally sourced materials and an eye on sustainability, the campus will encompass water conservation and energy saving features and will be a zero-discharge facility.”Nagpur has the potential to become the next big hub for knowledge-based industries like IT and engineering with its strong ecosystem of universities, talented people and infrastructure,” said N. Chandrasekaran, chief executive officer (CEO) & managing director (MD), TCS. “After Mumbai and Pune where we employ over 40,000 people, we are delighted to be part of the IT revolution in Nagpur,” he said.Chandrasekaran said the growing presence of TCS in Maharashtra is of strategic importance and is part of the firm’s overall business growth plan. TCS would remain committed to working in close collaboration with all stakeholders in Maharashtra to help develop local talent and provide customers with world-class IT solutions from Nagpur, he said.advertisementApart from world-class offices, the campus will have customer collaboration centres, cafeterias, gymnasiums and outdoor sports facilities.
Cricketer Yuvraj Singh’s father Yograj Singh has accused a Delhi based physiotherapist (Jatin Chaudhry) and a godman in Punjab of misleading his son about his illness.Yograj said he sniffed a conspiracy to harm his son, but fortune favoured Yuvraj and he was safe.Speaking to media in Chandigarh, he said that people surrounding Yuvraj were not his well-wishers and they prevented him from going to the US for treatment about six months ago.”The so-called baba (godman) and all those surrounding him did not let him go for treatment six months ago. My son told me he was going to the USA saying he would be alright. Then why were his tickets cancelled?” Yograj wondered.Yograj’s outburst came a few days after he stated that he advised Yuvraj to get a thorough medical check-up done, but he had ignored him. Yograj stated that he had to plead before his son to go to the US for treatment. He added that he did not want to blame anyone.Yuvraj Singh’s father Yograj (left); Delhi based physiotherapist Jatin Chaudhry.Yograj who lives separately from wife Shabnam in Chandigarh, said that his son was a victim of conspiracy. “There should be a probe to discover how did his medical reports go missing from the car? Why should anybody steal the reports? Why should a physiotherapist treat somebody like Yuvraj as far as cancer is concerned?” he said.Yograj said that the godman gave Yuvraj a false assurance that everything was alright after the reports were stolen from the car. “And Yuvraj defied everybody, including his father. He defied medical science since baba told him he was alright. Then he went to England and got injured.”advertisementYuvraj’s father alleged that people surrounding him kept on telling that he was under some spell, but everything was alright now.”My son should go to the Golden Temple to thank the almighty and get rid of the people who were set to ruin him,” he said.”My son should now understand that when you fly high, you don’t know what is happening around. I believe that Yuvraj Singh will be strong enough to understand now,” he added. The physiotherapist and godman were not available for comments.
Leander Paes on Saturday said that he is ready to partner whosoever is chosen by the selectors as “Olympics is my greatest honour.” Breaking his silence after Mahesh Bhupathi accused him of “backstabbing,” Paes said who he partners at the London Games was not the most important issue for him.The All India Tennis Association (AITA) has stuck to its decision to pair the two veterans while the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has asked for a report in the matter.”Winning a medal at the Atlanta Olympics is the most cherished memory I have in my tennis career. To play for our flag, and represent India for the sixth time at the Olympics, is my greatest honour. I will, as I always have in the past, put my best foot forward,” said Paes.Paes, India’s top doubles player ranked seventh in the world, refused to react to Mahesh Bhupathi’s stinging statements. “I have no reaction to the recent statements made by Mahesh Bhupathi to the media.I have always maintained that I will play with whoever the selection committee and AITA choose and this continues to be my stand,” Paes said.The 38-year-old player, who had the right to state his preference of partner for the Games, made it clear that he wanted to play with Rohan Bopanna, but said he would not mind combining with his estranged partner Bhupathi. “When asked by the AITA, I expressed my preference to play with Rohan Bopanna as my partner in the Olympics 2012, based on his physical fitness and big serve.”advertisementThe issue of India’s tennis entry for the London Olympics snowballed into a row after AITA chose Paes and Bhupathi as India’s sole representatives in men’s doubles.Bhupathi, who paired up with Bopanna in January with the London Olympics in mind, has maintained that he will not partner Paes as he and Bopanna have qualified as a pair.”It does not help to shoot one’s mouth off like this,” Rohit Rajpal, one of the selectors told Mail Today, on the outburst by Bhupathi and Bopanna. “They should have shown a bit more maturity, discuss things and think about the country. People do come together to rise to the occasion. We thought about all options before taking this decision. As of now, we do not know how it will unfold. We hope things calm down and they will think a little bit.”Asked about their options if Bhupathi refuses to change his stance, Rajpal said “We can then ask Bopanna to partner Leander.AITA chief Anil Khanna said that the federation will stand by its decision. “If Bhupathi expects AITA would buckle under pressure and refuses to pair up with Paes, he should know that it will not happen,” he said.”It will have to be Leander and Mahesh. Olympics is a different ball game and tougher than a Grand Slam and wealth of experience that the duo has would keep them in good stead in crunch and pressure situation”.Meanwhile, IOA supremo VK Malhotra has asked for a report on the issue. “Tennis is one of the sports which can fetch us a medal in the Olympics,” Malhotra told Mail Today. “I have asked Anil Khanna for a report which he has promised to give in a day or two. We will have to look at all the possibilities like whether we can send one team or two.”
In just three months this year, the Indian cricket Board has spent Rs. 34.50 lakh on medical assistance of players, with pacer Ishant Sharma’s ankle surgery raising the single biggest bill among the current players- Rs. 15.82 lakh.The surgery on the 23 year-old pacer’s troublesome left ankle was performed in London in March and Ishant is currently undergoing rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore.Ishant rightfully deserves the treatment as one of the contracted players of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and one of its leading pacers, when fit. He is likely to return to action in August, for the home series against New Zealand and, therefore, needs to be kept in cotton wool.A top BCCI official disclosed that during the period under consideration, BCCI had released a total of Rs. 34,50,415 on the treatment of the current and former players. “Of this amount, Rs. 27,48,671 has been spent on five contracted players of the Board, namely Ishant, Murali Vijay, Sachin Tendulkar, Munaf Patel and Zaheer.And on nine retired players the Board has spent Rs. 7,01,744 between January and April,” the official told Mail Today. Tamil Nadu opening batsman Murali Vijay raked up the second highest medical bill of Rs. 8,94,912, on his trip to Australia for treatment on his injured wrist. He has since returned to action and represented the Chennai Super Kings in the IPL in April-May.In all, Rs. 1,27,840 was spent on Tendulkar’s medical care. He visited London in March to seek medical advice on his troublesome right toe. Also, he got injured during Mumbai Indians’ opening IPL game against Chennai, when a delivery from pacer Doug Bollinger hit his right glove and broke one of his fingers. He, too, has since returned to the field.advertisementBills of pacer Munaf and Zaheer were RS. 79,254 and RS. 64,190, respectively, and settled in the same period – January to April. Both regained fitness and played for their franchises in the IPL, and should be in contention for India’s next assignment, the two-Test series against New Zealand starting on August 23 in Hyderabad.Ishant’s father Vijay Sharma lauded the BCCI for taking care of his son. “The Board pays attention to all the players, especially those who are on its contracted list. Ishant was in Grade A for 2011-12, which was worth 1 crore,” he told Mail Today.The BCCI is showing its humane face. It has reached out to the ailing ex-first-class players too, apart from giving the retired players a handsome one-time purse from the surplus earned from the IPL and Champions League T20.The biggest beneficiary among the nine first class players is former Kerala player JK Mahendra, 61, who underwent angioplasty a few months ago in Chennai. The BCCI gave him Rs. 2,94,291.The other first-class players who benefitted were P Ramesh Naidu (Rs. 97,646), Michael Dalvi (Rs. 88,194), PK Dharmalingam (Rs. 37,000), Stanely Saldhana (Rs. 29,265), PR Punjabi (Rs. 5,282), and BB Nimbalkar (Rs. 1,415).”My two arteries were blocked. I had medical insurance but it had lapsed. About five months ago I wrote to the Board, through the Kerala Cricket Association, for financial assistance,” Mahendra, who played 39 first-class matches between 1967 and 1981, told Mail Today.”I was lucky that I got timely assistance, for which I am thankful to the BCCI. Without this help, I’d have been struggling.” The Hyderabad-based Sultan Saleem, 64, had a heart problem, according to P Man Singh, manager of the 1983 World Cup-winning Indian team. “He had a heart ailment for which he had received treatment,” said Man Singh, who’s also based in Hyderabad. “In the early 1960s, he scored a triple century in the first innings of a school match and a double ton in the second in a match of Basalath Jah inter-school tournament. It was recognised by the Guinness Book of World Records too.”
Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next The senior guard fired nine of his 22 points in the payoff period, to go with four rebounds, four assists, and a steal in the win.“During our last huddle, coach was telling us that this is for JP (Nieles). He gave his all and that happened, so we didn’t let this game go,” shared Estrella as the team dedicated the win to their teammate JP Nieles, who hurt his left knee with 5:16 left in the fourth quarter.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingMapua faced a 64-57 deficit halfway through the fourth quarter, but Estrella scored seven of the Cardinals’ last 11 points, none bigger than his go-ahead trey at the top of the key with 20.6 seconds to go to give his side a 74-71 lead.GJ Ylagan tried to tie the game, but his trey went in-and-out, which led to Leo Gabo scoring the dagger layup with 10.6 ticks on the clock. View comments Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:12San Beda, Lyceum early favorites ahead of NCAA Season 9302:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Argentine bishop appears at court hearing on abuse charges Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Christian Buñag chimed in 19 markers and 14 boards, while Laurenz Victoria got 14 points, nine rebounds, and five assists for Mapua.The Cardinals moved up to ninth place in the team standings with their 3-12 card.Perpetual suffered its fifth straight defeat and fell down to 4-11 in the battle of also-rans.Ylagan topped the Altas with 22 points and six rebounds, while Keith Pido got 18 markers and six boards.Prince Eze tallied 15 points and 14 rebounds in the losing effort.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH Mapua’s Andoy Estrella. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netWith nothing to lose, Mapua pulled off a 76-71 stunner over Perpetual to nab its first streak in the NCAA Season 93 men’s basketball tournament Thursday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.Andoy Estrella once again didn’t shy away from the spotlight, drilling the game-tying floater and the go-ahead trey in the final minute to hand the Cardinals their third win in 15 games this season.ADVERTISEMENT Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ No more menthol cigarettes: New ban on tobacco, vape flavors The Scores:MAPUA 76 – Estrella 22, Buñag 19, Victoria 14, Aguirre 9, Gabo 6, Raflores 6, Jimenez 0, Nieles 0, Orquina 0, Pelayo 0.PERPETUAL 71 – Ylagan 22, Pido 18, Eze 15, Sadiwa 5, Yuhico 5, Lucente 4, Dagangon 2, Clemente 0, Coronel 0, Mangalino 0, Tamayo 0.Quarters: 22-17, 38-42, 55-55, 76-71. NU, UP dominate their way to finals berths in UAAP badminton MOST READ ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Winter storm threatens to scramble Thanksgiving travel plans For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. Trump to designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorist groups
Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Both boxers said they “never knowingly or deliberately committed any anti-doping rule violation.” They said they were willing to come to a compromise agreement with UKAD.“Hughie and I have maintained our innocence from day one,” Tyson Fury said in a statement released by his promoter, “and we’re now happy that it has finally been settled with UKAD and that we can move forward knowing that we’ll not be labelled drug cheats.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games opening“I can now put the nightmare of the last two years behind me.”Tyson Fury will need to reapply for his boxing license, which was suspended by the British Boxing Board of Control last year over separate incidents of drug use and medical issues. He has not fought since beatingWladimir Klitschko in November 2015 to win the WBA, IBF and WBO belts. FILE – In this file photo dated Sunday, Nov. 29, 2015, Ukraine’s Wladimir Klitschko and Britain’s Tyson Fury, right, exchange blows in a world heavyweight title fight as Fury wins Klitschko’s WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO belts in the Esprit Arena in Duesseldorf, western Germany. It is announced Tuesday Dec. 12, 2017, that Tyson Fury is free to box again after receiving a backdated two-year ban for an anti-doping violation. Fury has not fought since beating Wladimir Klitschko in November 2015. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, FILE)LONDON — Former world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury accepted a backdated two-year doping ban on Tuesday, freeing him to fight again if he regains his boxing license.Fury and his cousin, Hughie, had elevated levels of nandrolone in urine samples provided after fights in February 2015, UK Anti-Doping said. The bans were backdated to Dec. 13, 2015, and expired at midnight on Tuesday.ADVERTISEMENT ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims LATEST STORIES After 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Shaq asks fans to pick a better basketball duo than he and Kobe Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 MOST READ Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim The Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay Malditas save PH from shutout UKAD said that result has not been disqualified because he hadn’t committed an anti-doping violation since February 2015.A charge against Tyson Fury for failing to provide a sample in September 2016 was withdrawn by UKAD.Fury responded to UKAD’s announcement by posting a video on Twitter alongside the words “Guess who’s back?” He also called out WBA and IBF champion Anthony Joshua, writing: “Where you at boy? I’m coming for you.”Hughie Fury lost on points to WBO champion Joseph Parker of New Zealand in September in his first shot at a world title.ADVERTISEMENT Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ View comments
‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Kia may not have the most star-studded of lineups in the PBA, but the Picanto have a sheer force of will to rely on.“We’re realistic in knowing that we may not have top tier guys but what we have are the hardest workers in this league and I can attest to that hard work,” said Gavina. “We’re envisioning our team to be highly-disciplined and to be defensive-minded.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingGavina hopes that their sheer level of hard work would be able to make up for their lack of talent.“We cannot be normal, our effort and activity level has to be in an extraordinary pace in order to overcome the discrepancy in the level of talent with other teams.” LATEST STORIES Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next The Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH After 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim MOST READ Malditas save PH from shutout Head Coach: Chris GavinaKey Players: Reden Celda, Glenn Khobuntin, Jackson CorpuzKey Additions: Ronald Tubid, JayR Reyes, Jon GabrielKey Losses: LA Revilla, Jason BallesterosADVERTISEMENT View comments Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. And supplementing that pure will to win, and unadulterated potential hustle, is the influx of a championship mentality from former San Miguel Beermen JayR Reyes and Ronald Tubid.The two, together with Rashawn McCarthy, were acquired days before the 2017 Draft wherein the Picanto gave up the no.1 pick that turned out to be ABL standout Christian Standhardinger.Gavina hopes the former Beermen’s presence alone would be an enough influence to uplift the team’s mentality after suffering in the scourge of last year’s Philippine Cup when Kia, then known as Mahindra Enforcer, finished 3-8.“The San Miguel guys that came over brought tremendous character and that championship experience is invaluable to our younger guys,” said Gavina.“They can teach them how to get to that championship level, the ability to relay that championship focus and effort in practice will be of great help to us.”ADVERTISEMENT PBA Season 43 Preview: Pressure to dominate still fuels San Miguel
Superstar Amitabh Bachchan has gone grey and haggard for R Balki’s Shamitabh.He was spotted sporting grey, dis-shelved hair and long, thick beard at Mumbai Lokhandwala Gardens last week during a shoot of the film.Amitabh Bachchan shhoting for Shamitabh. Pic courtesy: TwitterSome time ago the actor had tweeted, “An arduous sitting for Balki’s (Balakrishnan) look test with the lovely Dominie from L.A. that did my prosthetic make-up for ‘Paa’,” Amitabh posted on Twitter.”It took time to be accomplished – the make-up I mean. It’s 3:30 am! What? Off to bed,” he further posted.Amitabh has earlier worked with R Balki in Cheeni Kum and Paa where he sported distinct looks. A pony tail in Cheeni Kum and prosthetic make-up in Paa.The film also features Raanjhanaa star Dhanush and southern star Kamal Haasan’s younger daughter Akshara.
Art of Living conducts a yoga program involving 10,000 people in Penang, Malayasia.Art of Living founder Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, who is currently in Malaysia, has received death threats from the terror group ISIS, his office said in a press release on Saturday.In a letter to the manager of Hotel Jen, where the Indian guru is staying, the group warned that the hotel would be destroyed and he would be killed if he is allowed to carry out “Hindu activities” in the country.The letter alleged that the guru claims himself “as non-religious” person but his organization Art of Living has been “converting Muslims in Iran and Iraq”. It is “meddling in Islamic affairs”, it said.It apparently sought to forewarn the organisers that he and the hotel will be destroyed if he sets foot in the country.Sri Sri Ravi Shankar gets death threat from ISIS in MalaysiaThe letter said ISIS doesn’t want him to step in any Muslim country and advised the authorities to convey the message.Meanwhile, the Indian embassy and the local authorities in Malaysia have been informed about the letter.The Indian guru was expected to address a huge gathering at Batu Kawan Stadium in Penang on Saturday evening.Earlier in the day, his organisation conducted a yoga program involving 10,000 people in Penang.
Mumbai Indians, who are yet to win a game in the IPL, will be looking to bounce back todayBuoyed by their thrilling last-ball win against Delhi Daredevils, a confident Rajasthan Royals will take on a beleaguered Mumbai Indians in an Indian Premier League cricket encounter on Tuesday.Having won their first two matches on the road, the Steven Smith-led side will be playing their first match in their “adopted home” venue of Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera.For Royals, the tournament couldn’t have started on a better note as they had two contrasting victories in their first two games.While the the 26-run win against Kings XI Punjab in Pune was a walk in the park, the Royals were stretched to the limit by Daredevils in their second match where Tim Southee got them home with a splendid last-ball boundary.The IPL unearths new talent every year and the talk after the first five days has been about young Baroda all-rounder Deepak Hooda, who has surprised one and all with composure and big-hitting abilities.The 25-ball 54 against DD has made the young Haryanvi ‘talk of the town’ and with Ajinkya Rahane and Smith for company, the youngster would be expected to blossom further.For Mumbai Indians, it’s been the worst start possible as they were comfortably beaten by seven wickets in their opening encounter against defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders while Harbhajan Singh’s individual brilliance could not stop them from losing the second match by 18 runs.On paper, Royals will start as favourites but MI can’t be written off. Even during last season, they had lost five matches on the trot in the UAE leg before recovering remarkably to make it to the play-offs.advertisementBut batting has been a bit of a bother for MI, who have icons like Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble and Ricky Ponting on board to help the players.Barring Rohit Sharma in the first game and Harbhajan in the second, the MI top-order has not performed per expectations.Australian opener Aaron Finch and India’s middle-order batsman Ambati Rayudu have both looked out of sorts while Corey Anderson also has been a bit scratchy despite a half-century in the first match at the Eden Gardens.But with the likes of Kieron Pollard, Finch, Rohit eager to make amends for the failures, the task will be cut out for the likes of Chris Morris, Tim Southee and James Faulkner to use all their variations and change-ups in store on a batting-friendly Motera pitch which also provides some help for spinners.The Royals’ batting line-up is pretty solid despite the absence of regular captain Shane Watson, who has been on the bench for the first two matches with a toe injury.But with current combination, which has Smith, Faulkner, Southee and Morris as the four overseas cricketers in the playing XI, doing well, it will be interesting to see whether the regular captain can find his place in the team.
The preparatory camp for the wrestling world championships is going on at full throttle and double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar is gearing up for a return to the mat in the 74kg category.The world championships, to be held in Las Vegas from September 7-12, will also double up as a qualification tournament for the 2016 Rio Olympics. With Narsingh Yadav also competing in the 74kg category, the Wrestling Federation of India is facing a dilemma on whether to hold selection trials which will pit the two against each other.Sushil’s last competition was the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow where he won gold, competing in the 74kg for the first time.Since then, the London Olympics silver medallist decided to focus only on the Rio Olympics. Narsingh, who competed at the London Olympics in the 74kg class, replaced Sushil and performed well, winning bronze medals at the Asian Games and the recent Asian Championships.Coaches at the national camp said Sushil, 32, is preparing in all earnest for the world championship but a call on the selection trials will be taken by WFI.”Sushil is preparing for any possibility. Narsingh has done well in recent tournaments. Every player should get an equal opportunity. But there are four Olympic qualification events and the world championship is the first one. The WFI will decide on it,” one of the coaches told Mail Today.The worlds, however, will provide the largest number of qualification berths. The top six wrestlers in each of the 18 Olympic weight categories will make the cut.advertisementWFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh said they are going to meet the coaches and selectors in the next few days to decide on the matter.”We have never exempted anyone from trials. Yes, in the past we have relieved senior players from nationals and trials considering their performances, experience and workload,” he told Mail Today.When the WFI decided not to hold selection trials for the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, paving the way for Sushil and Yogeshwar to return to the mat after two years with a direct qualification, some wrestlers moved court against the federation.However, both Sushil and Yogeshwar justified WFI’s decision by winning gold medals in their first international competition after the change in weight classes. Yogeshwar competed in the 65kg category while Sushil, who earlier fought in 66kg, participated in 74kg.Also, there is a new set of coaches and assistant coach Jagmal Singh has served as the personal coach of Narsingh. He is likely to argue in favour of trials.
Indian-Americans in California have begun preparations for a grand reception similar to last year’s Madison Square Garden event for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who would be the only second Indian premier to visit the state with a trip planned in September to Silicon Valley.Representatives of Indian-American organisations held their first full-fledged preparatory meeting in Sunnyvale, California to accord the grand reception to Modi at Silicon Valley, during the September visit.Modi is to attend the Annual General Assembly meeting of the United Nations in New York in September-end.After that, he is set to visit Silicon Valley and address Indian-Americans, including technology entrepreneurs, there though an official announcement is yet to be made.”We have planned a community reception on the evening of September 27 at the SAP Centre, San Jose where close to 20,000 people are expected to gather to hear him speak,” Khanderao Kand of newly-formed Indo-American Community of West Coast USA told PTI.The meeting was addressed by the Indian Ambassador to the US, Arun K Singh, via a video conference. Among others, it was attended by Consul-General of India in San Francisco, Venkatesh Ashok, and Dr Vijay Chauthaiwale, in-charge foreign relations department of BJP.Chauthaiwale is on a visit to San Francisco Bay Area to oversee the preparations for the reception.”The event is a historic moment for the Indian community in Silicon Valley and the diaspora in general,” he said.The Prime Minister’s visit is considered significant, especially with regard to his ‘Digital India’ initiative that aims to use technology in connecting people and transforming governance in India, said a media note by the organisation.advertisementModi would be the second Indian Prime Minister to visit San Francisco-Bay Area after Jawahar Lal Nehru’s trip in 1949.San Francisco-Bay Area, of which Silicon Valley is a part, is home to about half-a-million-strong Indian-Americans.Last year when Modi visited the US, he was given a grand reception at New York’s historic Madison Square Garden. He addressed nearly 20,000 Indian-Americans there.Like Madison Square Garden in New York, the SAP Centre is a top indoor venue in the US for such events.In 2006, the SAP Centre sold the most tickets to non-sporting events of any venue in the western US, and the fourth highest total in the world, after Madison Square Garden in New York City, the Manchester Evening News Arena in Manchester in Britain, and Air Canada Centre in Toronto.Last year, pop superstar Miley Cyrus performed at the arena during her Bangerz World Tour.In April this year, pop superstar Ariana Grande performed at the arena during her Honeymoon World Tour for the first time with a sold out crowd of 12,717 people.Organisers expect a packed crowd at the SAP Center, also known as Shark Tank, when Modi addresses Indian-Americans on September 27.
The Trent Bridge crowd were ecstatic and were applauding their boys. The England cricket team were acknowledging the applause and later did the victory lap after they had thrashed Australia in less than two and half days in the fourth Test to regain the Ashes urn.There were hugs, there were poses for photographs. The Englishmen on the field were living their dream. More than joy, England captain Alaistar Cook’s face was showcasing signs of relief.And amidst all this, two men, one dressed in suit, holding the microphone and the other dressed in training jersey were talking about their team’s poor showing. Shane Warne had asked Michael Clarke how it felt for him to give away the urn in such a horrendous manner.The viewers weren’t interested in hearing what the Australian captain replied, but were waiting for Warne to ask ‘that’ question, that obvious question. A lot of legends of the game have been on the receiving end of ‘that’ question.Warne didn’t wait.The legspinner doesn’t wait to ask, “What does this loss mean to Michael Clarke?””I will have one more Test in my career and then retire. I don’t want to jump ship now so I’ll have one last Test. You never want to walk away from the game but my performances have not been acceptable to me,” were Clarke’s words. Obvious, isn’t it!The cricket fraternity saw it coming, after all they have witnessed many such parting speeches.Things were brighter for ClarkeSix months back, on a Sunday afternoon, dressed in yellow, Michael Clarke was the focal point of everyone’s attention. Having led the Australian side to a World Cup victory at home, Clarke had every reason to sport a smile.advertisementThe Australians led by Clarke were clinical. The final was a match-up between two world class one-day international bowlers- Mitchell Starc and Trent Boult- who had been the nightmare for batsmen during the tournament.At one and the same time, a more subtle but crucial battle was being fought. The duel between the aggression of two captains, the attacking intent of two captains – Brendon McCullum and Clarke – proved to be the game changer. The latter outclassed the former with a brilliant display of positive intent. And that set the New South Wales man apart from rest of the modern day skippers.”Over the moon, what a tournament. Thanks to every Australian and cricket supporter out there who’ve been behind us. The team and support staff, the support I’ve had since coming back into the team, they deserve to stand there with the trophy”Time is right to walk away from one-day cricket, I’ll still be playing Test cricket,” were the words of a captain who was willing to go after leading his team to the pinnacle of one-day cricket.Unlike this time, he was not forced to make a decision.The game is indeed cruel.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Anurag Thakur on Sunday made it clear that there will be no cricketing ties with Pakistan until they stop giving shelter to mafia Don Dawood Ibrahim and not make attempts to indulge in dialogue with separatist leaders.”Dawood in Karachi. NSA wants to meet separatists here. Are you really serious about peace and you expect we’ll play cricket with you?” Thakur said in a tweet.The BCCI was scheduled to have a series with Pakistan in UAE in December but Thakur has made it clear that no cricketing ties will resume until cross border terrorism stops.This statement comes a day after planned talks between the national security advisors (NSAs) of India and Pakistan collapsed under the weight of intense diplomatic acrimony, with New Delhi insisting the meeting must focus on terrorism and Islamabad saying parleys with conditions would serve no purpose. Both sides did not categorically state they were calling off the talks and blamed the collapse of the process on the other.
Indians had a great outing on Thursday with Leander Paes and Sania Mirza storming into US Open final. Paes pairing with another veteran Martina Hingis won their mixed doubles semifinal clash against Rohan Bopanna and Yung-Jan Chan. While Sania Mirza and Hingis downed top-seed pair of Sara Errani and Flavia Pennetta to enter women’s doubles final.The Indo-Swiss pair of Paes and Hingis didn’t not break much of sweat as they easily went past Bopanna and Yung-Jan Chan 6-2, 7-5. The duo are entering a grand slam final for the third time in this year. Paes and Hingis will now face Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Sam Querrey in the final.Earlier in the day, Hingis combined with Mirza and didn’t had much of trouble taking on the Italian duo of Errani and Pennetta 6-4, 6-1.Hingis and Sania took an hour and 17 minutes to battle past their Italian opponents in the semifinal match. The Wimbledon champions were tested in the first set, but they began to get in the groove in the second and went on to win the set in 28 minutes.Sania and Martina maximised spaces and kept hitting angles against their 11th-seeded opposition. The duo had a first serve winning percentage of 67.The Indo-Swiss pair took an hour and 17 minutes to battle past their Italian opponents in the semifinal match. The Wimbledon champions were tested in the first set, but they began to get in the groove in the second and went on to win the set in 28 minutes.advertisementThe top seeds made their way into the semis by beating Chinese Taipei ninth seeds Yung-Jan Chan and Hao-Ching Chan 7-6(5), 6-1 on Tuesday.Mirza and Hingis are a win away from winning their second grand slam title in two months. The duo won the Wimbledon title in July when they overpowered Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina 5-7, 7-6 (7/4), 7-5. They came from behind against the Russian duo in the final to clinch their first ever grand slam title.
New Delhi, Sep 20 (PTI) SRS Ltd will invest up to Rs 900 crore in the next two years to expand retail network of its various consumer centric businesses such as hospitality, cinema, jewellery and real estate. “We will invest between Rs 700-900 crore in the next two years to expand retail network of our various businesses. We are also foraying into the pharmacy business with the launch of our first store SRS Pharmacy next week,” SRS Ltd Group President and Chief Strategy Officer Tinku Singh told PTI. The firm plans to open 30 SRS Pharmacy stores this fiscal. “Our plan it to open 100 pharmacy stores every year. We have all the approval in place. We are testing the waters. We will also launch online pharmacy portal next month,” SRS E-retail Ltd Managing Director Pratik Jindal said. Singh added that the company has drawn an aggressive expansion plan to increase its footprints across business verticals. “We will fund up to Rs 900 crore investment through a mix of internal accruals and debt,” he added. SRS Ltd, which reported a turnover of Rs 3,824.84 crore in the previous fiscal, has presence across various sectors such as retail, hospitality, real estate, cinemas and jewellery. PTI SVK ANU MKJ
Raia (Goa), Oct 12 (PTI) Helped by a hat-trick from their captain N Ratanbala Devi, Manipur got the better of Maharashtra 5-4 in a Group A match of the Junior National Football Championship for girls U-18 here today. The team from north-east opened scoring early with their ace striker and captain Ratanbala Devi finding the net in the 9th minute at Raia Panchayat Ground here near Margao. Maharashtra, stunned by the goal, regrouped quickly and scored in the 12th minute through Bhagyashree Dalvi to restore parity. Kashmina and Ratanbala Devi combined well for the third straight match in the ongoing championship and were a class apart in a team that boasts of 10 players who have represented India in the past. The striking duos efforts paid with quick goals coming in the 18th, 24th and 28th minutes to give Manipur a commanding 4-1 lead in just under 30 minutes of play. All these goals were scored by Ratanbala Devi. Taken aback by the assault, Maharashtra regained momentum through their dependable midfielder Smriti Girish, who started pushing the ball into the oppositions half. Maharashtras resilient efforts bore fruit and Bhagyashree Dalvi pulled one back for team in the 39 minute for a halftime score of 4-2 in favour of Manipur. After the half-time, Maharashtra looked a different outfit, displaying a lot of energy and zeal and putting tremendous pressure on the Manipur backline and goalkeeper. The captain of Maharashtra Pooja Dhamal scored a goal in the 56 minute to bring Maharashtra closer with a score line of 4-3 in favour of Manipur. The goal made the match a very interesting affair with both teams working hard to get a control of the proceedings. Maharashtra efforts to find the all-important equaliser left big gaps in their defence. One such lapse was exploited by Manipur with a good counter-attack goal by Kashmina in the 79 minute. This put Manipur in a comfortable 5-3 lead with just over 10 minutes left in the match. Maharashtra managed to pull one goal back via Jyoti Mehra in the 90th minute. But it was a little too late for Maharashtra and Manipur emerged victorious with the final score of 5-4. Maharashtra now play Bihar on October 14 at Rosary Sports Complex at Navelim. Bihar overcame a strong Jharkhand earlier today. Manipur will take on Jharkhand on the same day at Raia Panchayat Ground. PTI MCS RSY PDS PMadvertisement