Indian sports News- October 4th

October 4, 2019

Chess, Kabaddi, Lawn Tennis, Cricket, Boxing, Athletics, FootballTokiyo_oplympic

Bytes: SA rises in 1st Test, IndiavsSA T20I womens, World Youth Chess Championship, Indian Open, Taiwan Masters, World Cup Qualifiers, Calcutta Football League, Pro Kabaddi League, Tokyo Olympics, World Athletics Championship, China Open, Doping, Boxing India Coach, KSCA President

YoGems makes sure that you won’t miss a thing in the field of sports, so here is a quick recap to all the happenings from the last 24 hours:

WC Qualifiers– India’s senior men’s football squad arrived in Guwahati on Friday for a preparatory camp ahead of India’s second round World Cup qualifier match against Bangladesh, to be held on October 15 in Kolkata. The camp will end on October 12 following which the squad will proceed to Kolkata. “Everyone expects us to win and many people already feel that this India team is at the beginning of a new and very successful era,” head coach Igor Stimac said. India went down to Oman in a heartbreaking 1-2 home loss in their first match of the second round of qualifiers. The Blue Tigers followed it up with a strong performance in the second game by holding reigning Asian champions Qatar to a goal-less draw. Meanwhile, goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, who donned the captain’s armband against Qatar in the absence of Sunil Chhetri, said a win will help boost the team’s confidence.

CFL– For Peerless Sports Club, the soon-to-be winners of the Calcutta Football League, the champagne has been on the ice for the past few days. East Bengal their only remaining challengers in the title race couldn’t play their final league game due to poor field conditions on Sunday and later did not appear for the rearranged game forcing the matter into the hands of the Indian Football Association committee and thus delaying the triumph for Peerless. Although the decision to hand the game to East Bengal’s opponents that would, in turn, confirm Peerless as the new CFL champions remains a formality, the call will only be taken when the committee members return to office after the festive holidays due to Durga Puja. For a club that’s waited a lifetime for this occasion, the final few days could feel excruciatingly long, but for team’s coach Jahar Das that has hardly been the case. Peerless, who began playing in the CFL since 1993, has never seen any other team apart from East Bengal or Mohun Bagan win the competition. Even before their entry into the league, the case was no different. In the past sixty years, the trophy has exchanged hands within only three clubs: East Bengal, Mohun Bagan and Mohammedan Sporting, the big boys of Indian and Kolkata football. In fact, Mohammedan Sporting won their last title back in 1981. Peerless started the league with a draw and a loss, but a surprise 3-0 victory over Mohun Bagan triggered a six-game unbeaten run during which they also turned over East Bengal. Just like any title triumph, Peerless’ run was not all smooth sailing. A 2-0 defeat to Mohammedan Sporting cast doubts over their ability to claim the historic title, but as all champion teams do, they bounced back with wins in their final two matches, keeping clean sheets in both.

World Championships- India’s Asian Games gold medallist duo of shot-putter Tejinder Pal Singh Toor and 1500m runner Jinson Johnson crashed out of the World Athletics Championships in the qualification round in Doha on Thursday. The 24-year-old Toor produced season’s best effort of 20.43m to finish eighth in the qualification round Group B and 18th overall out of 34 competitors while Jinson ran a below-par 3 minutes 39.86 seconds to end 10th in the first round heats and 34th overall out of 43 runners.

Doping- The International Olympic Committee wants to know if the Games could have been “affected” by doping by banned US coach Alberto Salazar, IOC president Thomas Bach said on Thursday. The US Anti-Doping Agency on Tuesday banned Salazar for four years. It said that the doping offences were carried out “in connection” with the Oregon Project, an elite running programme Salazar set up with Nike in 2001. Bach said he would ask the World Anti Doping Agency for more information about the USADA report on the investigation. Bach also said that the IOC would like doping samples taken prior to the Olympic Games to be stored for 10 years as samples taken at the Games already are. Salazar, a former top marathon runner, has denied ever doping his athletes and vowed to appeal his ban.

China Open– Andy Murray went down fighting in the China Open quarter-finals on Friday as the former world number one lost 6-2, 7-6 (7/3) to top seed Dominic Thiem. The 32-year-old Briton, battling to get back to a semblance of his best following career-saving hip surgery in January, was defeated in just under two hours after threatening an unlikely, late comeback. A third match in four days in the Chinese capital proved a step too far for Murray, who looked exhausted after a three-set victory on Wednesday against Cameron Norrie. Murray, a three-time Grand Slam winner, had the Beijing crowd firmly behind him against the Austrian Thiem, ranked fifth in the world to his opponent’s 503rd. The 26-year-old Thiem plays Karen Khachanov in the last four after the Russian fourth seed defeated Fabio Fognini of Italy in three sets.

World No 1 Ashleigh Barty said she produced some of her best tennis this year as she battled into the China Open semi-finals Friday with a gutsy victory over Petra Kvitova. The Australian came from a set down to win 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 and will play Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands in the last four in Beijing. This was the sixth meeting between Barty and two-time Wimbledon champion Kvitova, with the former winning only one of her previous encounters against the Czech. Bertens, eighth in the world, sealed her spot in the semi-finals with a two-set victory over Elina Svitolina of Ukraine.

Coach- Indian Boxing’s High Performance Director Santiago Nieva found a place in the coach’s commission, while long-serving team doctor Karanjeet Singh was inducted into the medical commission of the Asian Boxing Confederation. The ASBC, which earlier named veteran Kishan Narsi as chairman of its competitions commission, has included Assam Boxing Association Secretary Hemanta Kumar Kalita in its youth commission. Narendra Kumar Nirwan was India’s representative in the refereeing and judging commission. Nieva joined the Indian team in 2017, while Dr Singh has been a part of the men’s national camp for over a decade.

IndvsSA- Dean Elgar led a defiant South Africa fightback Friday scoring 133 as the tourists reached 292/5 at tea in response to India’s giant first innings total in the opening Test of the three-match series. Elgar built key stands, including an unbeaten 114 runs with Quinton de Kock, on 69, to thwart the Indian bowling threat in Visakhapatnam. Elgar and de Kock still need 11 runs to avoid the follow on as they chase India’s 502/7 declared. The left-handed Elgar, who started the day on 27, reached his hundred with a six off Ravichandran Ashwin in the second session. He also put on 115 runs with skipper Faf du Plessis for the fifth wicket to revive the innings after South Africa lost crucial wickets late Thursday. Indian opener Mayank Agarwal set the tone for the hosts’ dominance of the game with his 215 and a 317-run opening stand with Rohit Sharma, who hit 176 of India’s giant score.

IndvsSA women– India produced another authoritative performance in Surat on Thursday to comfortably defeat South Africa by five wickets in the fifth T20 International, taking an unassailable 3-0 lead in the reformatted six-match series. With two games being completely washed out, the series was extended from five to six matches with mutual agreement between the two sides. India needed to win on the day to seal the series once again. And Harmanpreet Kaur led from the front as India won the match by five wickets. While Kaur’s batting was the highlight, on the slow pitch that has not been ideal for either side’s T20 World Cup preparation, Mandhana continued to struggle for timing. Shafali Verma and Mandhana both fell after starts and it was left to the captain to make sure India crossed the finish line without any further wobbles.

KSCA– Former India cricketer Roger Binny and his team swept the Karnataka State Cricket Association election held in Bengaluru on Thursday. It was outgoing KSCA supremo Brijesh Patel, whose panel swept the polls and he thus retains control of the association. Patel in Board of Control for Cricket in India politics is known to be a close ally of former BCCI president N Srinivasan. Binny defeated Captain MM Harish, while Abhiram won against former journalist Joseph Hoover. Santosh Menon and Mruthyunjaya defeated Raghuram and BN Madhukar respectively. Tarapore won against Preet Hegde, the new treasurer of KSCA said. There were 1,066 voters. It was a landslide victory for Binny, Mruthyunjaya added.

Rankings ODI- India skipper Virat Kohli and pace sensation Jasprit Bumrah on Thursday maintained their numero uno status in the latest ICC men’s ODI player rankings. In the ODI batting chart, Kohli and his deputy Rohit Sharma held on to their number one and two positions respectively, while Bumrah remained at the top in the bowling list. Pakistan’s Mohammad Amir, who grabbed four wickets in the three-match home series against Sri Lanka, grabbed a career-best seventh position after jumping six spots. In the ICC men’s ODI team rankings, Pakistan and Sri Lanka have retained sixth and eighth positions, respectively. Namibia, Oman and the USA, who have ODI status, meet the minimum requirement of eight qualifying matches and are now on the rankings table.

Tokyo Olympics:
Heat advisory-Tokyo Olympics organisers have sent out questionnaires to international sports federations seeking advice on how to counter the searing heat expected in the Japanese capital during the 2020 Games. However, the International Olympic Committee was adamant Thursday that the move was not prompted by the devastating physical effects of the heat during the ongoing world athletics championships in Doha. The Tokyo Olympics run from July 24-Aug 9 next year where summer temperatures can soar to a sweltering 35 degrees. However, Bach added that Tokyo has already revealed “sophisticated” measures to prevent the dangers of heat, even testing in early September a system to drop artificial snow onto fans. In Doha, the women’s marathon last weekend saw 28 of the 68-strong field fall by the wayside as the sauna-like conditions decimated the field despite the race starting at around midnight local time.

Pro Kabaddi League- Puneri Paltan edged out Telugu Titans 53-50 in a closely-fought encounter that set a new record for most points scored in a single a Pro Kabaddi match at the Tau Devilal Sports Complex in Panchkula on Thursday. Manjeet (12 points), Sushant Sail (11 points) and Sureejet Singh (7 tackle points) were the stars for the Pune side. The defeat meant Telugu Titans were officially eliminated from the playoff race. It is now a battle between UP Yoddha and Jaipur Pink Panthers for the final spot. Titans’ star raider Siddharth Desai was successfully tackled by Manjeet in the very first minute and that set the tempo for Paltan as they picked raid points with ease. On Friday, Jaipur Pink Panthers will look to keep their hopes of making the next stage alive against Bengaluru Bulls before Haryana Steelers face Telugu Titans in the final game of the Panchkula leg.

India Open- Teen amateur golfer Pranavi Urs nailed two late birdies to emerge as the best-placed Indian at Tied-10th after the opening round of the Hero Women’s Indian Open at Gurugram on Thursday. The 16-year-old from Mysore, a past winner on the domestic pro tour, brought home a card of one-under 71 at the DLF Golf and Country Club to lie four shots behind the two leaders – England’s Meghan MacLaren and Whitney Hilliers of Australia. Meghan and Whitney shared the lead at five-under 67. Norwegian Marianne Skarpnord and England’s Liz Young were tied third at four-under 68 each, while Swede Linda Wessberg (69) was fifth. Four players, including Europe’s Solheim Cup-winning captain, Catriona Matthew, were tied-sixth on two-under 70 and another eight players shot 71s to be Tied-10th including Pranavi. Adding to the action on the first day was Lucknow-based 19-year-old Jyotsana Singh, a late entrant, who aced the par-3 16th. She had an interesting finish – four bogeys between 13th and 18th with an ace in between on 16th for 73. She closed with two bogeys.

Taiwan Masters- India’s Ajeetesh Sandhu went on a birdie spree to turn in a four-under 68 and lie fourth after the opening round of the Mercuries Taiwan Masters in Tamsui, Chinese Taipei on Thursday. Sandhu, starting from the back nine, opened with a bogey but blasting five birdies on the trot from 13th to 17th to turn in four-under. On the second nine – the front side of the Taiwan Golf and Country Club course, he had nine pars to total 68. Philippines’ Miguel Tabuena and Malaysia’s Nicholas Fung, who are sharing a room this week, returned matching five-under 67s to be tied for the first-round lead with South Africa’s Keith Horne. Thailand’s Danthai Boonma is tied for fifth with Chinese Taipei’s Wang Wei-lun and Lin Yung-lung.

Youth Chess Championship- Indian prodigies Grandmaster R Praggnanandhaa and Woman International Master Divya Deshmukh notched up their second straight victory as round two of the World Youth Chess Championship concluded early on Thursday in Mumbai without any major upsets. Chennai’s Praggnanandhaa got the better of Poland’s Antoni Kozak in the Open U18 category while Nagpur’s Diya routed Bhagyashree Patil in the Girls U14 to underline their form and preparedness for the 11-round mega event, India’s biggest chess tournament in recent times. Fourteen-year-old Praggnanandhaa was among 12 players, including four other Indians, to maintain a clean slate and pick up the maximum possible 2 points so far. The country’s second youngest Grandmaster, playing white, opened with the King’s Indian. On move 17, he sacrificed his Rook for a Knight as he put pressure on Antoni’s king. The Pole soon returned the sacrifice, hoping to get away unscathed.

Key results (Round 2): U14 Open: Sreeshwan M (IND) bt. Rudolf Jun Jr (CZE); Volodar Murzin (RUS) bt. Dennis Andrijashkin (EST).
U14 Girls: Divya Deshmukh (IND) bt. Bhagyashree Patil (IND); Rakshitta Ravi (IND) bt. Mariya Alekseenko (RUS)
U16 Open: – Moke Niemann (USA) bt VS Raahul (IND); Oliver Wartiovaara (FIN) drew Santiago Avila (COL)
U16 Girls: Leya Garifullina (RUS) bt. Madara Golsta (LAT); Govhar Bydullayeva (AZE) drew Svitlana Demchenko (CAN)
U18 Open: – Shant Sargsyan (ARM) bt Shixu Wang (CHN); R Praggnanandhaa (IND) bt Antoni Kozak (POL)
U18 Girls: – Polina Shuvalova (RUS) bt. Tanishka Kotia (IND), Vantika Agrawal (IND) drew Aashna Makhija (IND)

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