(Current Affairs) Sports | January - 2016


Saina enters final

  • Defending champion Saina Nehwal is just one step away from retaining her women’s singles title at the $700,000 China Open Super Series Premier badminton.
  • The Olympic bronze medal-list on Saturday sealed the final spot after notching up a 21-13, 21-18 win over China’s Yihan Wang, a 2011 World champion and 2012 London Olympics silver medal-list, in the semifinals.
  • Up against one of her toughest rivals, who has beaten her nine times, Saina showed her prowess as she fought back from 2-4 down in the opening game and prevailed in a gruelling battle in the second to outclass Wang.
  • The top-seeded Indian will next take on Olympic champion Li Xuerui of China, an opponent against whom she has lost nine times and the only wins coming during the 2012 Indonesia Open and Singapore Open Super Series in 2010.

India tastes victory, finally

  • India overcame great odds to emerge a 1-0 winner against Guam in Bengaluru, its first victory in six 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers (AFC second round). Not only were the Indians up against a higher-ranked team, they also had to compete for near-ly 45 minutes with only 10 men.

  • The home team, which claimed its first points in the competition, continued to stay at the bottom of Group D. Guam (seven points) was placed a rung higher. In a stunning opening sequence, India took the lead through Robin Singh in the 11th minute.

  • Goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh launched a long goal-kick and found skipper Sunil Chetri open on the flank. Chetri cut into the box before relaying the ball to Robin. The striker received the pass with his back to the goal, and spun around his marker to create some space. Though he shot of his weaker right-foot, the near-perfect curler nestled into the far top-corner.

  • Just before half-time, the Indians were dealt a big blow when defender Sehnaj Singh was sent of. A high tackle and a collision brought an instant red card from the referee, forcing coach Stephen Constantine to change his approach. The players fell back in open play, and apart from the lone forward upfront, the rest were called up to hold fort.

Vijay Kumar clinches centre fire pistol bronze

  • Olympic silver medallist Vijay Kumar emphasised his versatility by winning the centre fire pistol bronze in the 13th Asian shooting champion-ship that concluded in the Ku-wait City on Wednesday.

  • It could have been a better medal, but the 30-year-old, after being tied on 584 with Pong-pol Kulchairattana of Thailand lost the shoot-of for the silver 48-49. The gold went one point higher at 585 to Jang Dae Kyu of Korea.

  • Vijay had recovered from 287 in the precision series with an impressive 297, the best in the rapid fire section. The Indian team missed the gold to Korea by two points, with Samaresh Jung faring be-low his best with a 572 while Pemba Tamang chipped in with 580.

  • Swapnil Kusale had earlier won the individual and team gold in the junior men’s rifle 3-position event on Tuesday, to enhance the rich haul for the In-dian team that eventually wound up with 17 gold, 14 silver and 13 bronze medals.

  • Despite repeated notices from the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF), about the International Olympic Committee (IOC) revoking the Olympic quota places from the championship owing to Kuwait Olympic Association being suspended for government interference, the organisers listed the Olympic quota winners. It included six Indians — Pooja Ghatkar, Heena Sidhu, Lajja Gauswami, Sanjeet Rajput, Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Neeraj Kumar — in the list displayed on the official website Kuwait Shooting Federation.

Manohar to replace Srinivasan as ICC head

  • Board of Control for Cricket in India president Shashank Manohar will be the new BCCI representative at the International Cricket Council. He will replace former BCCI president N. Srinivasan who was elected the first chairman of the ICC in June 2014.

  • Former BCCI and ICC president Sharad Pawar has been named the alternative representative in case Mr. Manohar is unable to attend The house praised Mr. Srinivasan’s contributions as the ICC chairman.

  • The BCCI accepted in principle the proposed rules on conflict of interest and other amendments to its constitution.

  • It also appointed Justice (retd.) A.P. Shah as the ombudsman, who will look into all conflict of interest disputes. Another important decision was that it would meet every quarter and make professional appointments to strengthen the governance of the BCCI based on the report to be submitted by Deloitte.

Warriors trump Blasters in opener

  • The chants of ‘Sachin, Sachin’ filled the air but Sachin Tendulkar could not trump Shane Warne’s magic as the Indian icon’s Blasters went down to the Australian legend’s Warriors in the first ‘Cricket All Stars’ Twenty20 here.

  • Tendulkar was the undisputed favourite for the largely Asian crowd at a baseball stadium here but it was Warne, who weaved some old-time magic to lead his side to a six-wicket win. Set a target of 141, the Warriors romped home with 16 balls to spare after Ricky Ponting and Kumar Sangakkara hit 81 runs between them.

  • Shane Warne snared three wickets, including that of Tendulkar and the legendary Brian Lara. For the Blasters, Virender Sehwag hit the series’ first half-century which came of just 22 deliveries. Electing to field after wining the toss, the Blasters were given a rollicking start by Tendulkar and Sehwag, much to the delight of an expatriate crowd that filled the stands.

  • Together, the former Indian batsman raked in 85 runs in a mere 48 deliveries. However, the rest of the star-studded line-up failed to come good and the team ended with 140 for eight.

  • For Warriors, Warne showed he had lost none of the famed magic with figures of three for 20 in his four overs. In reply, Ponting (48 not out) and Sangakkara (41) steered the Warriors home after a top-order collapse.

IPL: Kochi and Jaipur removed from venue list

  • Kochi and Jaipur have been removed from the venue list for the two new IPL franchisees for season 2016 and 2017. The new franchises will re-place CSK and Rajasthan Royals which have been suspended from the league for two years.

  • “Issues with Jaipur have not been sorted out and Kochi, too, has problems, but there are nine other venues. The IPL Governing Council has approved the draft invitation to tender (ITT) that will be endorsed by the AGM tomorrow [Monday],” said IPL GC chair-man Rajiv Shukla, who is likely to be renamed IPL chairman for2015-2016. Shukla also said the GC has deferred the big auction by a year.

  • The two new franchisees will be allowed to choose from ten players together from CSK and Rajasthan Royals, and the rest of the 40 players from CSK and RR will go for the auction. “We will follow a reverse bidding for the two new franchisees and Rs. 40 crore will be the base price, which means a franchise can start bidding be-low the base price.”

Heena Sidhu wins thriller against Gundegmaa Otryad

  • Heena Sidhu pipped Olympic silver medallist Gundegmaa Otryad of Mongolia by 0.2 point for the women’s air pistol gold in the Asian shoot-ing championship in Kuwait City on Friday.
  • Heena captured the gold in a thrilling fashion despite shoot-ing eight 9s on the last 10 shots of the final. It was the second successive gold for Heena following the Asian Air Gun championship last month. She also managed to push the London Olympics gold medallist Kim Jangmi of Korea to the bronze.
  • There were more gold medals for India through Angad vir Singh Bajwa in junior men’s skeet. Angad along with the bronze medallist Anant Jeet Singh Naruka and fourth-placed Arjun Mann won the team gold, 27 points ahead of Kuwait.

Indian juniors strike it rich

  • India finished with a rich haul at the World youth chess championship in Halkidiki, Greece, on Thursday. It won 11 medals — five gold, three silver and three bronze.
  • It was indeed quite an impressive show by the Indians who won five out of the 12 gold medals on ofer.
  • India was by far the best-per-forming country. The other top teams, Russia and the United States, won just four medals each but neither of them could win a gold.

Tom Graveney passes away

  • Tom Graveney, the former England captain and president of Marylebone Cricket Club, died at the age of 88.
  • Graveney made 11 centuries in 79 Test matches be-tween 1951 and 1969, scoring 4,882 runs at an average of 44.38. Appointed MCC president in 2005 he was an honorary life member of the Lord’s Club.
  • India was a lucky hunting ground for Graveney. Hescored his first Test century (175) against India at the BraBourne Stadium before the 1951 Christmas.

Yogeshwar the highest-paid marquee player

  • London Games bronze medallist Yogesh-war Dutt pipped double Olympic medallist and World champion, Sushil Kumar, to become the highest-paid marquee player at Rs. 39.7 lakh in the Pro Wrestling League auction.
  • The league, with a total cash prize of Rs. 3 crore and a Rs. 20 crore budget for the players, will be staged in six cities — Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Ludhiana, Gurgaon and Noida from December 10 to 27.
  • In all, over 150 Indian and international wrestlers went under the hammer in the auction conducted by Bob Hayton.

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