Having already pocketed the five-match cricket Test rubber, with an unassailable 2-0 lead, a confident India will be aiming to keep the winning momentum going when they face an inconsistent England in the fourth match at the Wankhede Stadium here from Thursday. (Kohli, Pujara approaching key milestones)This will be the first instance since 1989 when India will play a Test at the Wankhede sans retired batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar.The fourth Test will also give India a chance to exact revenge for their loss in their previous two Test meetings at the ground before heading to Chennai for the final encounter.Going into Thursday’s encounter, the Virat Kohli-led side will aim to extend their dominant run despite some injury concerns in the squad.The top-order batting has clicked well for the hosts with Cheteshwar Pujara and Kohli himself exhibiting great form in the middle while all-rounders Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja have handled any hiccups brilliantly lower down the order.Senior wicketkeeper-batsman Parthiv Patel, who was drafted into the national side after after an eight-year long wait, has displayed good maturity behind the stumps as well as an opening bat with scores of 42 and unbeaten 67 in the third Test at Mohali.But with the return to fitness after a forearm injury of opener Lokesh Rahul, Patel may be asked to bat down the order. (Rahul to open the innings: Kohli)Youngster Karun Nair, who made his Test debut at Mohali, looks likely to make way for Rahul.Kohli will however, be concerned with the form of opener Murali Vijay who has failed to click in this series so far.advertisementRAHANE RULED OUTKohli’s deputy Ajinkya Rahane, however, has been ruled out of the remainder of the Test rubber after the Mumbai batsman sustained an avulsion fracture on his right index finger during training on Wednesday.Manish Pandey has been named as Rahane’s replacement.The bowling department have so far fared decently with pacers Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Shami managing to be amongst the wickets with the new ball.SHAMI DOUBTFUL STARTERHowever, Shami’s concerns with a sore knee makes him a doubtful starter. In his absence, Bhuvneshwar Kumar will be Umesh’s likely new ball partner.Local boy Shardul Thakur has been named as a back-up option in case Shami is ruled out of the squad.The spin department, comprising the trio of Ashwin, Jadeja and Jayant Yadav have well established their supremacy over the English batsman and Kohli is likely retain the trio at the spin-friendly Wankhede.India will also aim to keep their 16-match unbeaten streak and are just one short of equalling their own unbeaten record of 17 games without a loss.On the other hand, despite conceding the series, the visitors are expected to come hard after spending a week away in Dubai.England had also replaced two injured players — teenaged opener Haseeb Hameed and left arm spinner Zafar Ansari — with two uncapped players — Keaton Jennings and Liam Dawson.For any chance of reviving their fortune in the ongoing series, the visitors will bank on their batting, which has failed to click as a unit so far.Skipper Alastair Cook will be expecting at least two of his main batsmen — Joe Root, Moeen Ali, Jos Buttler and stumper Jonny Bairstow — to spend enough time in the middle while handling the Indian spinners.Promising left-handed opener Jennings is likely to partner Cook at the top.Meanwhile, the return of pacer Stuart Broad, who missed the third game after sustaining a foot injury in the Visakhapatnam Test, will lend enough teeth to their bowling attack.The visitors are likely to go in with four pacers with leg-spinner Adil Rashid and Moeen filling the spinners’ slots.Squads:India: Virat Kohli (Captain), Murali Vijay, Lokesh Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Manish Pandey, Ravichandran Ashwin, Parthiv Patel (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Amit Mishra, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Karun Nair, Jayant Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shardul Thakur.England: Alastair Cook (Captain), Keaton Jennings, Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Jake Ball, Gary Ballance, Gareth Batty, Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler, Ben Duckett, Steven Finn, Liam Dawson, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes.
Luciano Spalletti criticised Inter’s passive approach as they lost 2-0 at Barcelona in Group B of the Champions League.Inter struggled to get a foothold in Wednesday’s contest at Camp Nou despite Barca captain Lionel Messi’s absence due to a fractured arm.Rafinha, who was on loan at Inter last season, gave Barca a first-half lead and Jordi Alba wrapped it up for the hosts with seven minutes remaining. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! And Spalletti was unhappy with the way his Inter team allowed Barca to set the game’s tempo and rhythm, with Arthur giving a midfield masterclass.”I’m sad mostly because I wanted a totally different approach in the first half,” Spalletti told reporters.”We were not brave enough to play the ball when we were in possession and we allowed Barcelona to play as they prefer.”You cannot come here to defend and try to score on one counter-attack, you need to play better with the ball if you want to achieve something in this stadium.”We didn’t show as much character compared to our first two Champions League games. We weren’t courageous enough and the opposition made the most of our attitude. We didn’t do as much as we can.”We also could have scored over the course of the game but they were stronger than us and deserved to win. They played well, passing the ball quickly and thinking fast.”Samir Handanovic made nine saves to keep the score down, while Philippe Coutinho hit the crossbar, but Barca moved three points clear at the top of Group B.Inter, though, are likely to follow Barca into the next phase as a 2-2 draw between PSV and Tottenham earlier in the day gives the Serie A side a five-point cushion in second spot.”Obviously we are happy about the result in the other game,” Spalletti added. “But we must focus on the fact that we weren’t at our best. We need to play much better next time because we are a team with ambition.”
One of the most highly expected releases of this year is Thala Ajith Kumar-starrer Vivegam, which is directed by Siruthai Siva. When the makers released the first look poster of Vivegam, it sent fans into a tizzy. Sporting a muscular look, Ajith broke the internet for several reasons.After teasing the fans with stylish pictures of Ajith Kumar, we hear an interesting news regarding the teaser of Vivegam. According to a report in Behindwoods, producer Thiyagarajan of Sathya Jyothi has confirmed that the teaser will be unveiled on Thala’s birthday, as a treat to his fans. Now that’s something exciting, isn’t it?Earlier this month, Siva took to Twitter to share a stylish picture of Ajith, which went viral on the web.Directed by Siva, Vivegam marks Ajith’s third collaboration with the director after the commercial success of Veeram and Vedalam. In the film, Ajith will be seen as a suave Interpol officer.Tipped to be a spy thriller, the film also stars Kajal Aggarwal and Akshara Haasan in important roles, while Bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi will be playing the prime antagonist. Vivegam is expected to release on August 10.Made on a lavish budget, Vivegam was predominating shot in exotic locations.ALSO READ: Baahubali 2 | An emotional SS Rajamouli bids farewell to team on Twitter ALSO READ: Prabhas plays triple role in SS Rajamouli’s Baahubali 2? ALSO READ: After Baahubali 2, Karan Johar to launch Prabhas in Bollywood?
It is hard to view Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane’s playing career as anything other than outstanding. Arguably the finest midfielder of his generation, he would feature in many all-time best elevens.But Saturday’s Champions League final against his former club Juventus is a reminder that the Frenchman hasn’t quite had it all his own way.When Juve signed Zidane from French club Bordeaux in 1996 they had just been crowned champions of Europe. The midfielder was the man they hoped would help ensure more Champions League success.Italian rivals AC Milan had just won Europe’s top trophy three times in close succession and, in an era when Serie A was Europe’s undisputed top league, Juventus wanted, perhaps needed, to follow suit and dominate the continent.But it never happened – Juve lost two finals during the Zidane era, and his solitary Champions League success would come with Real in 2002.In 1997, Juve lost 3-1 to Borussia Dortmund in the final, with the Frenchman largely ineffective, marked out of the game by Scottish midfielder Paul Lambert.The following year Juve were back in the final for the third season in a row, only to lose 1-0 to Real, Predrag Mijatovic’s goal providing the Spanish club’s first European title in 32 years.”Moments like that are tough and sad, but they’re part and parcel of any footballer’s career and you’ve got to accept them. I’m just happy I got to win the competition later with Real Madrid. All careers leave you with both good and bad memories,” Zidane said recently.advertisementThe pain was soon eased for Zidane, who that summer won the World Cup in his homeland with France, but his final three years at Juve were a let-down in terms of trophies.Zidane had been part of two title-winning teams in his opening two years at the club, but his last three years brought only the obscure UEFA Intertoto Cup.When he made his then world record 75 million euro transfer to Real in 2001, Juve fans were saddened but there was no outrage.Indeed, the transfer fee helped the club bring in three players who would deliver a renewed period of domestic dominance – goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, French defender Lilian Thuram from Parma and, most importantly, Czech midfielder Pavel Nedved from Lazio.Nedved achieved a rapport with the Juve fans that Zidane never quite managed to reach – although his team-mates from that era never fail to speak with fondness of his time in Turin.”He was always in sync with everybody because he wanted to help each one of his teammates despite his stunning technique,” says former Juve forward Alessandro Del Piero.”I didn’t expect him to become a manager but it could have been predicted given that he was always able to read the game. That’s why he always takes the best decisions as a manager and that’s why he has won everything so far,” he said.Zidane, who lived quietly in the countryside during his time in Italy, remains liked and respected among the Juve faithful. But on Saturday they will be hoping Massimo Allegri’s team can deliver the very same trophy the Frenchman failed to secure.
Sony launched its 2017 flagship phone, aka the Xperia XZ Premium, in India on Thursday at a price of Rs 59,990. First announced at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, in February, the Xperia XZ Premium is follow-up to last year’s Xperia X Performance. Spiritually however the Xperia XZ Premium succeeds 2015’s Xperia Z5 Premium. The Xperia XZ Premium sports a 19-megapixel Motion Eye camera system on the rear assisted with predictive phase detection and laser autofocus, but no Optical Image Stabilisation. There is EIS for videos though.The USP of Sony’s Motion Eye camera system is said to be the fact that it can do 960-frames-per-second slow-motion videos, 4X times slower than any other smartphone available in the market right now, and ‘dramatise your every moment’ according to Sony.Sony has been able to achieve this by fitting a 128MB DRAM layer of memory onto the camera sensor itself. The 960 fps slow-motion mode is activated via a dedicated toggle inside the camera app. The phone, in addition, can also record 4K videos.Sony’s Motion Eye camera system, on-board the Xperia XZ Premium, also supports Predictive Capture. The phone’s rear camera apparently has a knack for moving objects. As soon as you fire up the camera app and should there be some sort of motion in view the phone’s sensor is able to predict the same. The sensor then captures three random shots of the object in motion before you actually press the shutter key. The focus is on getting the best possible — blur-free — result out of the given scenario.advertisementOnce you’ve taken the picture, the camera app would show you four different cases of the same photo — three taken automatically by the sensor and one taken by you — and you can then chose to keep either all of them or select the best possible outcome.On the front, the Xperia XZ Premium comes with a 13-megapixel camera with auto-focus.Erstwhile, the Xperia XZ Premium, much like the Xperia Z5 Premium, comes with a 4K screen (3840×2160 pixel resolution) and adds HDR 10 into the mix. The phone, in addition, also supports Sony’s signature Triluminos Display for mobile, X-Reality for mobile and Dynamic Contrast Enhancer technologies.The Xperia XZ Premium comes with what Sony calls loop surface design. The phone is essentially carved out of Corning’s Gorilla Glass 5, but, uses healthy doses of metal and plastic as well. While the sides of the phone are metal, the top and bottom ends are plastic. The Xperia XZ Premium is also IP68-certified for dust and water resistance and uses USB Type-C for charging and data syncing. There’s also a side-mounted fingerprint scanner on-board the device.Hardware specs include: 5.5-inch IPS LCD display, Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 processor coupled with 4GB RAM and 64GB of internal memory which is further expandable by up to 256GB via a hybrid micro-SD card slot. The phone comes with a pair of stereo speakers and support for high-res audio via compatible headphones. The dual-SIM Xperia XZ Premium runs Android 7.1.1 Nougat-based Xperia UI and supports 4G LTE (VoLTE-ready). It also supports what Sony calls as adaptive charging. The Xperia XZ Premium uses intelligent charging to prevent battery decline, according to the company. It learns your charging patterns and adapts to them, resulting in up to twice the battery lifespan, it claims.The phone is backed by a 3,230mAh battery and supports Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0. It ships with a Quick Charger UCH-12 in the box which is claimed to charge the phone by up to 60 per cent in 45 minutes.The Xperia XZ Premium can be pre-booked at all Sony Center, select retail outlets and online exclusively on Amazon India from June 2 to June 11. Those who pre-book the device during the period will receive a wireless Bluetooth speaker, SRS-XB20 which costs Rs 8,990 for free, the company announced. The Xperia XZ Premium will be available for buying from June 12 in the colours: Luminous Chrome and Deep Sea Black.Also Read: Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: To 4K or not to 4K is the question
His clay-court prowess as unassailable as ever, Rafael Nadal won his record 10th French Open title by dominating 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka 6-2, 6-3, 6-1 in the final Sunday.No other man or woman has won 10 championships at the same major in the Open era, which began in 1968.The 31-year-old Nadal was overwhelmingly good from start to finish against Wawrinka – and over the past two weeks en route to La Decima, Spanish for “10th.” Not only did Nadal win every set he played in the tournament, he dropped a total of only 35 games, the second fewest by any man on the way to any title at a Grand Slam tournament in the Open era with all matches being best-of-five-sets.Along with improving to 10-0 in finals at Roland Garros, Nadal increased his career haul to 15 Grand Slam trophies, breaking a tie with Pete Sampras for second place in the history of men’s tennis, behind only rival Roger Federer’s 18.It marked a stirring return to the top for Nadal in his favorite event and on his favorite surface: Over his career, he is now 79-2 at the French Open and 102-2 in all best-of-five-set matches on clay.A year ago in Paris, Nadal surprisingly withdrew before the third round because of a wrist injury, making the announcement at a news conference while wearing a blue brace on his left arm and a look of resignation of his face. He couldn’t bring himself to watch much of the rest of the 2016 French Open, he said, other than some doubles matches involving a good pal, and the singles final.advertisementFinally back to full strength in the off-season, Nadal returned to work, reconstructing his forehand and redoubling his efforts to get back to his best.Well, he sure proved to be precisely that Sunday, when the conditions were exactly to the liking of a guy who grew up on the island of Mallorca. The sun was shining, there was barely a trace of cloud in the bright blue sky and the temperature was about 85 degrees (30 Celsius).Wawrinka is no slouch; he owns three major titles, including one from Roland Garros, and had never lost a Grand Slam final. But a five-set semifinal win Friday over No. 1-ranked Andy Murray must have taken something out of the 32-year-old from Switzerland, the oldest French Open finalist since 1973. His shots didn’t have their usual verve, his legs their usual spring. After one point Sunday, Wawrinka bent over, leaning one arm on his racket and resting the other on a knee.Instead of pointing to his right temple, as he often does after key points won, Wawrinka kept rubbing his forehead or running his fingers through his hard after key points lost. When he netted a forehand to close a 14-stroke back-and-forth in the second set, he pounded his strings on his head several times.Nadal has that way of wearing down opponents. On this day, he was nearly perfect. He won all 12 service games, saving the lone break point he faced, and made a mere 12 unforced errors.When it ended, Nadal dropped to his back on the clay, then rose and briefly pulled his blue shirt over his face. He was again the champion, again unbeatable at the French Open.
World number one Andy Murray has voiced his support for changes designed to speed up tennis being tested at the inaugural Next Generation ATP Finals in Milan this November.The tournament for the leading tour players aged 21 and under will feature a new scoring system, no lets, limited medical time-outs and shot clocks as the men’s governing body seeks ways to appeal to younger audiences.The scoring system is the most radical change to the traditional format, with five-set matches decided through first-to-four-game sets, instead of the usual six, with tiebreaks played at 3-3.”Tennis is doing very well right now but that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s going to be the case in the future, so I think it’s important to try new formats, different scoring systems and see if it works,” Murray told reporters.”It is good to try new things… at least it’s trying something different. You have to give credit for doing that, because tennis has often been accused of being too traditional, not wanting to try new things.”The only new rule that Murray specifically opposed was the no-advantage scoring rule, where each game will be decided by a sudden-death point at deuce.”I would prefer to try a shorter set with the same scoring, rather than the sudden-death deuce points,” Murray added.
Former captain Sunil Gavaskar feels his ex-teammate Ravi Shastri is the favourite to become the head coach of the Indian cricket team.Shastri has become the front-runner for the high-profile job after he formally submitted his application to the BCCI.”Ravi actually was the one (during his tenure as Team Director) the turnaround actually started for the Indian cricket team back in 2014,” Gavaskar told NDTV.”After India lost in England, the BCCI asked him to come in as a team director…suddenly there was a change in the team’s fortunes over a period of time. Now that he’s applied, he’s probably the man who is going to get the job,” Gavaskar said.Shastri, who served as Indian team director from August 2014 to June 2016, shares a healthy rapport with the players including captain Virat Kohli.During his tenure, India won limited-overs away series against England in 2014, reached the semi-finals of the World Cup and World T20 (2015 and 2016 respectively), won away Test series against Sri Lanka, home series against South Africa and T20 away series against Australia.The others who have applied for the head coach role are Virender Sehwag, Tom Moody, Venkatesh Prasad, Richard Pybus, Dodda Ganesh, Lalchand Rajput and Phil Simmons.
Mumbai, Jul 11 (PTI) Sports management company ITW Consulting today said it has bagged the title and in-stadia advertising rights of India tour of Sri Lanka from broadcaster Sony Pictures Networks India.”Viewers are looking forward to the series as this is the Indian cricket teams first full tour (Tests,ODIs anda T20) of Sri Lanka in three years. In addition to this, advertisers are also aware of the visibility that is ensured through the duration of the tournament, giving brands a wider reach,” Rajesh Kaul, President, Distribution and Sports Business, Sony Pictures Networks India said in a statement.The Virat Kohli-led team will play three Test matches, five One-day internationals and a T20 match in Sri Lanka, starting from July 26 till September 6.”We will shortly be making the title sponsor announcement for the India series along with the central on-ground partners of the series,” ITW Consulting co-founder Bhairav Shanth said. PTI DS NRB
Arsenal collected the Community Shield after beating Chelsea 4-1 in a penalty shootout on Sunday that used an experimental format mixing up the order of the spotkicks.After the traditional curtain-raiser to the English season ended 1-1 after 90 minutes, Olivier Giroud scored the winning penalty. The striker ensured the FA Cup holders opened the season just as they finished the last campaign – by beating the Premier League champions to secure silverware at Wembley Stadium.It was a meeting at English soccer’s national stadium in March that saw soccer’s lawmakers agree to test out a new pattern that would see the order mixed up between teams A and B to ABBAABBAAB.Only six penalties were required in Sunday’s game after Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and striker Alvaro Morata both missed in succession. Arsenal duo Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Giroud then both converted their kicks to clinch the victory.Chelsea had led during the game, with Victor Moses scoring inside a minute of the second half.But Arsenal leveled immediately after gaining a man advantage. Pedro Rodriguez, wearing a mask after being injured on Chelsea’s pre-season tour of Asia, was dismissed in the 80th minute for a studs-up sliding challenge on Mohamed Elneny.It proved even costlier when the resulting free kick by Granit Xhaka was headed in by new defensive recruit Sead Kolasinac.
We’ve all seen how our Bollywood beauties have recently become just so experimental with their sarees that it has reformed the perspective we had of this traditional Indian piece of clothing. From denim sarees to dress-sarees, tinsel-towners have taken draping this nine-yard ensemble so innovatively, that they’ve taken it to a whole new level of awesome.A few months ago, yesteryear actress Twinkle Khanna was seen taking some fashion-inspo from Sonam Kapoor’s drool-worthy, fringe saree by Abu Jani Sandeep Khosla.Also Read: Is Twinkle taking fashion inspiration from Sonam Kapoor?And today, another celeb has taken after a fantastic, experimental saree, and aced the look. The celebrity in question is none other than Malaika Arora, who was seen sporting a metallic-blouse saree, while reminding us of Shilpa Shetty’s look for Dadasaheb Phalke Academy Awards 2017.Malaika looked electrifying in her silver-grey number that was just so well-balanced with its shimmer that it was a treat to the eyes. The diva wore a striped, white-silver blouse that looked like beautiful, metallic straws had been welded together to make the strapless blouse.Photo: Yogen Shah We fell hard for her elegant, self-striped saree in grey, that boasted of a subtle sheen, and looked so well-balanced with the glistening, shield-like blouse. Malaika styled her saree so as to leave a thigh-high slit, which looked utterly sensual, and tucked in the pallu under one of the metallic-looking straws that added a touch of sharpness to it.Photo: Yogen Shah Malaika wore absolutely no accessories with the bling-a-ding, sultry number, and jazzed up the look with a pop of hot-pink on her lips. While Malaika’s metallic-saree look was beyond perfect, we couldn’t help but think of how this experimental outfit had looked over-the-top on its progenitor, Shilpa Shetty.advertisementPhoto: Yogen Shah Shilpa had successfully ruined this phenomenal styling idea by teaming her glimmering blouse with a silver embroidered, heavy, Banarasi saree. Not only was the combination gaudy, Shilpa had clearly gone overboard with the jewellery too.Picture courtesy: Instagram/theshilpashetty Also Read: Is it a saree or a gown? Shilpa Shetty’s OTT appearance is confusingBack then, we had no idea how hot this saree could look, until we saw Malaika draping it like a total boss.
Australia have called up spinner Steve O’Keefe to replace injured quick Josh Hazlewood for the second and final test against Bangladesh.Hazlewood will return home for rehabilitation at the end of the opening Test and miss the second match in Chittagong as well as the limited overs tour of India which follows.Fast bowler Kane Richardson will replace Hazlewood in India but the presence of like-for-like replacement Jackson Bird in the Test squad in Bangladesh means a recall for O’Keefe.The left-arm finger spinner was considered unfortunate to miss out on the trip to Bangladesh after taking 19 wickets at an average of 23.26, including 12 in the first test at Pune, on the test tour of India earlier this year.O’Keefe, 32, was fined A$20,000 ($15,838) for “highly inappropriate behaviour” towards a female cricketer while drunk at an award ceremony in April, however, and failed to get a national contract.Fears that his misbehaviour, a second indiscretion involving alcohol in 18 months, might have brought an end to his international career were apparently misplaced, however.”With Jackson Bird in the squad we are comfortable with our fast-bowling options for the second test and have elected to add an additional spinner given the conditions we are likely to face in Chittagong,” Australia’s head selector Trevor Hohns said in a statement on Wednesday.AP PhotoHazlewood’s contribution to the Bangladesh tour may not be over yet, despite the left side strain that team physiotherapist David Beakley said would require “several weeks of rehabilitation”.Australia go into day four of the test at Shere Bangla National Stadium needing 156 more runs to win with eight wickets in hand and Hazlewood will bat if necessary.advertisementThe loss of the hardiest of Australia’s pace bowlers just a few months before they host England in an Ashes series around the New Year is a blow, however.While Pat Cummins, James Pattinson and Mitchell Starc have been frequent visitors to the treatment room, Hazlewood has been his country’s most reliable fast bowler since making his test debut in late 2014.The Ashes series begins in Brisbane on November 23.
The Indian Junior Men’s Hockey team on Monday registered a win in their second consecutive match of the 7th Sultan of Johor Cup 2017 with a 2-1 win against hosts Malaysia at the Taman Daya Hockey Stadium here.Malaysia scored early in the match through Firdaus Omar (3′), but India’s Dilpreet Singh (20′, 43′) scored twice to win the game for his team.The Malaysian side started the match aggressively as they displayed some attacking play, which led to an early penalty corner in the third minute.FT! Dilpreet Singh’s double gives the Indian Jr. Men’s Team a second win on the bounce at the #SOJC2017 on 23rd Oct. #INDvMAS #IndiaKaGame pic.twitter.com/nQhfPfLNjE- Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) October 23, 2017Here’s the Standings after the second day’s play at the 7th Sultan of Johor Cup 2017 (Jr. Men) on 23rd October 2017.#SOJC2017 #IndiaKaGame pic.twitter.com/k7LgrDq6zz- Hockey India (@TheHockeyIndia) October 23, 2017However, in the second quarter, India started strongly as they looked to make a comeback into the match. The efforts from the Indian team led to an equaliser in the 20th minute when a long pass to Dilpreet Singh was well controlled by the forward on the right flank, after which he turned inside and hit a fierce shot that was deflected off the Malaysian Goalkeeper Muhamad Mat Deris into the back of the net.India ended the third quarter with a 2-1 lead after Dilpreet Singh scored his fourth goal of the tournament.In the last quarter, Malaysia looked to find the equaliser to avoid defeat at the hands of India in their second match of the tournament. The Malaysians were awarded two penalty corners in the 54th and 55th minute, but the first one was saved well by India’s Goalkeeper Pankaj Rajak and the second one was hit wide by the Malaysian drag-flicker.advertisementIndia will now face U.S.A. in their third match on October 25.
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) will investigate allegations by a retired physician that systematic doping took place in Chinese sport during the 1980s and 1990s, the international anti-doping agency said in a statement.In a programme on German channel ARD at the weekend, Xue Yinxian, who worked with several Chinese national teams, called for all medals awarded to the nation’s athletes during that period to be withdrawn.The 79-year-old, who made similar allegations in 2012, said “medals were showered in doping” and claimed around 10,000 Chinese athletes had used banned substances.Xue, who is claiming asylum in Germany, alleged that she was sacked after refusing to administer banned substances ahead of the 1988 Seoul Olympics.”The Agency will ensure that, if action is warranted and feasible under the World Anti-Doping Code, the necessary and appropriate steps will be taken,” WADA said.”As a first step, the Agency has asked its independent Intelligence and Investigations (I&I) team to initiate an investigative process in order to collect and analyse available information in coordination with external partners.”Chinese athletes regularly failed dope tests after the country returned to the Olympic fold in the early 1980s but there was concerted effort by the government to crack down on the use of banned substances ahead of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.Russia’s athletics federation, Paralympic committee and anti-doping agency (RUSADA) remain suspended after reports commissioned by WADA alleged state-sponsored doping.
Shillong, Jan 6 (PTI) BJP President Amit Shah today termed the Congress government in Meghalaya as the “most corrupt” in the country and said BJP would not try to form the government in the state just for the sake of doing so.Assembly polls are due in the north eastern state this year and eight MLAs, including five from the Congress, joined BJP ally National Peoples Party earlier this week.Shah, who was speaking at a meeting of party leaders here, said over Rs 56,000 crore had been given to the north eastern state but was not part of the national movement for development.Charging Chief Minister Mukul Sangma?s government for being the “most corrupt in the country”, he said it has failed to deliver in all sectors such as health, infrastructure, tourism facilities and also in creating jobs.Shah said “Our mission is not to form the government for the sake of forming it. BJP is in no mood for it. The mission is to ensure that people get their due and that Meghalaya should become a model state – one of the most developed states.”He said, “The 14th Finance Commission under Prime Minister Narendra Modi allotted Rs 25, 413 crore to Meghalaya. But are the people in the state seeing development in villages? Where are the roads, the doctors and the nurses? Where are the teachers?”Compared to this, the 13th Finance Commission under the UPA regime had released only Rs 5817 crore to the state, which has a Congress government for 15 years.advertisementContinuing his criticism of the Sangma government, he said in addition to the 14th Finance Commission allotment various development schemes amounting to Rs 31,000 crore was also given to the state. Rs four crore for Clean India, Rs 46 crore for urban transportation, Rs 100 crore to Umiam Lake, Rs 9000 crore for Agia-Mendipathar-Tura road, Rs 6000 crore for Jowai-Nartiang-Khanduli road and Rs 1400 crore each for two sports stadia.”The money was given to the state for development. But Meghalaya is stuck in time and is not part of the national movement for development. Electricity is available for 24 hours in Gujarat, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh for years but it is not the same in Meghalaya,” he said.In both the meetings today, Shah urged party leaders and grassroot workers of the party to alert the people about bad governance of the present Congress regime and to vote for BJP to form the government. PTI JOP KK KK
Ahead of India’s high-profile South Africa tour, former captain Kapil Dev on Thursday said the current side are at a level to beat any team.Following the ongoing series against Sri Lanka at home, India are slated to visit South Africa for three Tests, six One-Day Internationals (ODI) and three Twenty20 Internationals in January.”I think the team has reached a level where they can beat anyone,” the 58-year-old said at an event.”Be it South Africa..or Australia, I think we have a captain who understands how the team functions,” added the country’s first World Cup-winning skipper.The legendary all-rounder emphasised on the fact that India are going to face a problem of plenty, with many young talents to be picked up from.”The only problem that the team is going to face is that whom they are going to pick in the playing XI, as we have a very strong bench,” Dev said.
The national selectors had made up their mind to drop Anil Kumble from the 2003-2004 Australia tour but former India skipper Sourav Ganguly put his foot down and ensured that the legendary spinner make it to the series.”I will give you the example of Anil Kumble, who was probably the biggest match-winner India has ever produced in the last 20-25 years. I remember attending a selection meeting before the tour of Australia in 2003. I was the captain of the side and I knew, selectors were not very keen on having Anil in that tour,” said Ganguly on the sidelines of a promotional event.”As I entered the selection meeting, I could sense the selectors had made up their mind to leave Anil Kumble out. I kept on requesting and insisting that he is such a match winner, he is done so much good for Indian cricket. He must be in Australia and the selectors just didn’t agree,” said Ganguly.Kumble is highest Indian wicket-taker in Tests, having grabbed 619 wickets in 132 matches with his best figures of 10/74 against Pakistan in New Delhi.Kumble, who coached India before the current coach Ravi Shastri, also has 337 ODI wickets in 271 matches.”The selectors wanted to pick a left-hand spinner because Australians don’t play left-hand spin well, and this went on for a good couple of hours. It was getting late and John Wright came up to me and said Saurav let’s finish this and go with what they said and I am sure we will do well,” he said.advertisementGanguly said he told coach John Wright that if Kumble was not picked for that tour, he might not play for India.”I told John that Kumble has been a champion for last 10 years, he is on his way down at the moment, may be because he hasn’t bowled well, but I actually feel it is a temporary thing,” said Ganguly.”I told John if you leave Anil, he may not play for India again. I said I am not going to sign the selection sheet till Anil is in the side. The selectors got fed up with me and said if I don’t play well, if the team does not play well and if Kumble does not play well, I will the first person to to go before anyone goes. I said fine, I am ready to take that risk and we will see what happens,” he added.And after that Kumble was picked for the Australia tour and Ganguly said he came out with flying colours.”Anil had an outstanding series, an outstanding year as well. He went on to pick 80 wickets that year, which was the most by any spinner in a calendar year in history of Test cricket,” said Ganguly.
New England at Green Bay features the two best teams with the most potent offenses in the NFL at the moment.It’s being billed in some quarters as a Super Bowl preview and, if so, watch how Pats coach Bill Belichick and Packers counterpart Mike McCarthy react to each other’s moves. If nothing else, this meeting figures to be an important test of their wills.Belichick is the NFL’s version of a mad scientist, a strategist who’s willing to overhaul his game plan from week to week, in part because he has quarterback Tom Brady to anchor the offense and enough mix-and-match defenders to play a variety of schemes.McCarthy, too, has proved plenty adaptable during his nine seasons in charge at Green Bay. But his coaching philosophy was formed early in his career, and with Aaron Rodgers, an equally smart, adaptable and accurate quarterback in his corner, he’s more likely to take a nip-and-tuck approach to change rather than a face-lift.McCarthy learned the virtue of patience nearly 30 years ago, as a skilled but undersized Pittsburgh prep star looking to play tight end in college.He wound up at tiny Baker University (enrollment: 3,200 students) outside of Kansas City, a football powerhouse in NAIA play. What McCarthy didn’t know at the time was that the Wildcats’ dominance was built on an option running game.“It could be third-and-15, third-and-16, third-and-whatever and we’d almost always run. Poor Mike,” said Scott Rampy, who played quarterback at Baker during McCarthy’s time there and remains a good friend. “I’m pretty sure he wound up blocking a lot more than he ever imagined.”“That’s not what they told me before I went there,” McCarthy recalled with a chuckle Wednesday. “That’s good recruiting.”It turned out to be, though, since in addition to patience, Baker is where McCarthy first became a student of the game.He learned the value of preparation from the late Charlie Richard, a Hall of Fame coach. But his first real hands-on experience came when then-assistant Dan Harris turned over responsibility for the line calls to McCarthy in his senior year.“That was the first sign of his coaching potential,” Harris said. “He began to analyze the game in more detail.”Both Harris and Rampy said McCarthy was an instant hit at Baker, regaling the mostly small-town recruits with tales of the big city, showing the kind of leadership that got him elected captain his last two seasons. The Wildcats finished second and fourth in the NAIA playoffs, but those around him sensed McCarthy’s football days were just beginning.“After graduation, we worked to get Mike a graduate assistantship in college and the rest,” Harris said, “is history.”Not quite. McCarthy went from Baker to Fort Hays State and coached linebackers there. After two years seeing the game from the other side of the ball, he went back on offense at Pitt under coach Mike Gottfried and quarterback guru Paul Hackett. Stints as an NFL assistant in Kansas City, Green Bay, New Orleans and San Francisco followed before McCarthy returned to Green Bay as the boss in 2006.Given the chance to draw up his own game plans, McCarthy went back to his Baker roots.“The way Charlie Richard went about a football game … one thing you knew when you stepped on a field, you were extremely confident,” McCarthy said.“You felt like you were better prepared than your opponent. Charlie was an aggressive, offensive play-caller, because not only did we have our bread-and-butter option package, there were always deceptions and big-play opportunities that he would create.”Preparing for a Belichick-coached team is particularly tricky, as New England’s seven straight wins attest. The three-time Super Bowl winner found a way to disarm such luminaries as Denver’s Peyton Manning and Indianapolis’ Andrew Luck during the run, and would love to shut down Rodgers for the trifecta.Belichick won both previous meetings and while he and McCarthy approach the game differently, there are some important similarities.Asked to compare the two quarterbacks early in the week, Belichick replied tersely, “They both wear No. 12,” before ending his session with the media. Faced with the same question, McCarthy replied “They’re both from California,” and he, too, called it a day.(JIM LITKE, AP Sports Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shares
TweetPinShare0 Shares UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Eddie Lack didn’t expect to share a shutout with Ryan Miller.But Lack’s 27 saves in relief proved to be exactly what the Vancouver Canucks needed on Feb. 22.Lack was perfect after Miller went down with an apparent leg injury early in the second period and the Canucks blanked the New York Islanders 4-0 to keep pace in the tight Western Conference playoff race.Zack Kassian, Radim Vrbata and Bo Horvat scored in the second period for Vancouver. Yannick Weber added an empty-net goal.“I know you have to prepare for anything to happen,” said Lack, who replaced Miller at 1:11 of the middle period. “When he went down, I just had to go in there and play my game.”The 34-year-old Miller won his 28th game — since the Canucks were ahead 1-0 when he was injured. Miller left after he was run into by teammate Jannik Hansen in the crease.Miller, who made 10 saves, stayed down and was in pain after the collision and appeared to flex his right leg as he left the ice.“That was a big game to help us believe what we’re trying to do as a team,” said Canucks coach Willie Desjardins, who offered no update on Miller’s condition. “We battled and Lack made some unreal saves.”Vancouver opened its five-game trip with a shootout win over the Rangers on Feb. 19 followed by a 4-2 loss at New Jersey on Feb. 20.The Canucks continue with visits to Boston and Buffalo, where Miller played 11 seasons for Buffalo before he was traded to St. Louis late last season.Kassian opened the scoring for the Canucks on the power play 28 seconds into the second period with his eighth of the season and third goal in two games.The puck hit the post behind Islanders goaltender Jaroslav Halak before bouncing off him and into the net.Vrbata made it 2-0 on the man advantage at 9:53, his team-leading 22nd goal for the Canucks. The goal was assisted by brothers Henrik and Daniel Sedin.Henrik Sedin, who leads the team with 54 points including 42 assists, has 14 points in his past 11 games against the Islanders.“We played well, the way we can, even with the injuries we have,” he said. “It’s just a matter of scoring when you have chances. We earned the win against one of the best teams in the league.”Horvat, a rookie, made it 3-0 for the Canucks at 13:55 with his ninth goal of the season.A first-round pick by the Canucks in 2013, the 19-year-old Horvat has 10 points in his past 13 games. Weber scored an empty-net goal with 10.2 seconds remaining.Lack stopped eight shots in the balance of the second and 19 more in the third.“Lots of guys stepped up, blocking shots in front of me. It was a great team effort,” Lack said. “We were playing a really, really good team and the boys did a great job.”Vancouver also improved to 12-2-0 against Metropolitan Division opponents, including a 3-2 home win over the Islanders on Jan. 6.The Islanders lost their second straight this weekend following a 3-2 shootout loss at Washington on Feb. 21.They still lead the Metropolitan Division with 80 points and are 21-8-0 at Nassau Coliseum this season. They have three more games this week against Arizona, Calgary and Carolina.“They played a very good road game and we had some bad luck with pucks going into our net without finding ways to score,” Islanders defenseman Thomas Hickey said. “We have to be better in the next three games.”New York had been shut out only one other time this season, a 5-0 loss at Colorado on Oct. 30.Halak, who made 20 saves, remains one victory shy of setting an Islanders record for wins in a season. He’s tied with Billy Smith, Chris Osgood and Rick DiPietro at 32.(ALLAN KREDA)
KAUNAS (Euroleague). In the Euroleague home debut for Sarunas Jasikevicius as head coach, Zalgiris Kaunas put its defense on parade to down mighty Olympiacos Piraeus 75-55 and seize its first victory in Top 16 Group F. The 20-point margin was Zalgiris’s biggest victory ever against the Reds, who matched their fourth-lowest point total in the Euroleague this century. Zalgiris is now 1-3 in Group F and Olympiacos fell to 2-2 and a five-way tie for second place. Zalgiris gave Olympiacos, the Euroleague’s best defense this season, a taste of its own medicine by limiting the Reds to a single field goal for almost 15 minutes on either side of halftime then holding them scoreless for the first 5 minutes of the fourth quarter. Paulius Jankunas led the winners with 18 points. Ian Vougioukas followed with 13 points, while Renaldas Seibutis and Edgaras Ulanovas had 11 each. Olympiacos had just one double-digit scorer, Darius Johnson-Odom with 11 points in 11 minutes, while being held to 38% two-point and 20% three-point shooting. The Reds struggled at the free throw line through the first three quarters, too, impeding their comeback attempts. Conversely, Zalgiris went 21 for 22 on foul shots.Reds rebound from slow startLukas Lekavicius, making his first start of the season, got fouled on a three-pointer and downed all of his free throws for a 3-0 Zalgiris lead. Ioannis Papapetrou matched that with his team’s first shot. Jankunas rolled in a hook shot before Siebutis, too, got and made 3 free throws for an 8-3 scoreboard. Vassilis Spanoulis threaded the needle to Georgios Printezis for a layup. After Lekavicius made a one-hander in the lane, Printezis was back with a three-pointer, and when Nikola Milutinov put back a miss, Olympiacos had a 10-10 tie. After a timeout, Spanoulis did the honors of giving Olympiacos its first lead with a clean, foul-line jumper. Jankunas evened the score with free throws, but Spanoulis drove strong to take back the lead. Ulanovas hit 1 of 2 at the line, as did Othello Hunter. And when Vougioukas tipped in his own miss, Hunter matched him at the other end with a spectacular dunk off an offensive rebound. Brock Motum’s free throws evened the score again, but 1 of 2 from the line by Spanoulis put the visitors in front, 17-18, after 10 minutes.Zalgiris defense shuts down OlympiacosDaniel Hackett dropped an elbow jumper and Hunter a jump hook from the paint as Olympiacos upped its lead to start the second quarter. Vougioukas restarted the Zalgiris offense with a hook shot, but Hackett matched it with a fall-back jumper at 19-24. A lull then ended with Motum feeding Vougioukas for a dunk and the accompanying free throw to make it 22-24. Next, Martynas Pocius put his head down, drove baseline and tied the score. Then Ulanovas tipped a rebound to Jankunas who put Zalgiris back in front, 26-24. Olympiacos continued missing open shots until a free throw by Spanoulis ended a more than five-minute scoring drought, but Jankunas answered with a runaway dunk. When Printezis did the same, Ulanovas bettered him with a three-point play started by a tough hook shot as Zalgiris’s lead moved to 31-27. Missed free throws by Hunter gave Zalgiris a final chance to extend the lead, and Pocius made that happen by feeding Motum for an easy layup. As such, the hosts stormed into halftime ahead by 33-27 after holding Olympiacos to just 3 free throws over the last 7:25 of the second quarter.Vougioukas, Zalgiris stretch advantageMilutinov tipped in an Olympiacos miss to end his team’s eight-minute stretch without a field goal. But Ulanovas responded from long range and Jankunas backed down for a fadeaway jumper and a 38-29 Zalgiris advantage. Lekavicius drove the lane, pivoted and banked in a layup for the first double-digit lead, 40-29, forcing an Olympiacos timeout. Hunter made 1 of 2 free throws but otherwise Olympiacos couldn’t buy points as Spanoulis missed an open triple, making the visitors 2 for 15 from downtown until then. Hackett missed 1 of 2 free throws, as well, to make it 40-31. Ulanovas downed a pretty hook shot before Hunter flushed another miss. Motum scored on a feed from Vougioukas that turned into a three-point play at 45-33. But after futility for much of the game until then, Olympiacos suddenly got a pair of three-pointers to fall from D.J. Strawberry and Vangelis Mantzaris. Vougioukas kept scoring with a couple inside baskets and Olympiacos kept splitting free throws, but was able to pull within 49-42. Motum made 2 of 2 for Zalgiris before Johnson-Odom kept Olympaicos strong from the arc. Olivier Hanlan then got his first points on free throws to finish the third quarter with Zalgiris holding onto a 53-45 edge.Seibutis makes sure!Two scoreless minutes to open the fourth quarter were broken by Mantas Kalnietis, in his last game with Zalgiris, feeding Jankunas in a crowd for a layup and a new double-digit edge, 55-45. The Zalgiris defense continued to dominate as Jankunas hit from the baseline to make it 57-45, matching the game’s high lead until then. But the hosts were not done. Seibutis took a pass from Jankunas and turned it into an acrobatic reverse-and-free throw at 60-45. Hackett got 2 points back at the foul line, ending his team’s five-minute scoring drought, but Kalnietis hit a fall-down runner in the paint and Vougioukas downed a hook shot as the lead climbed to 64-47 with 3 minutes left. The best was yet to come for the Kaunas crowd, however, as Seibutis struck from the corner with a triple good for a 20-point advantage, 67-47. Seibutis would be back with a final turnaround swish in the final minute to give keep the Zalgiris fans on their feet all the way to the finish of a victory that will be remembered in Kaunas for a long, long time!TweetPinShare0 Shares