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COVID-19: Japan PM to propose 1-year postponement of Olympics

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Tokyo, March 24 : In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and growing clamour to push back the Olympics, Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is set to propose a one-year postponement of the Tokyo Games during his talks with IOC President Thomas Bach, Japans NHK public television reported on Tuesday.

Abe said a postponement is unavoidable if the 2020 Games cannot be held in a complete manner amid the coronavirus pandemic, the report says.

After the IOC said it would come to a decision on the Tokyo Games over the next four weeks, Abe held telephone talks with Bach.

IOC member Dick Pound had stated that the 2020 Summer Games will be postponed by one year because of coronavirus.

The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has stated that no decision regarding the postponement of Tokyo Games, slated to start from July 24, has been made as of now by the International Olympic Association (IOC) and it will be done only in four weeks time.

Chairman of the British Olympic Association has said Great Britain would be unlikely to send a team to Tokyo this summer while Australia and Canada have already said they will not compete in Japan due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee has also said that “the path toward postponement” of the Tokyo Games is “most promising” after surveying about 2,000 American athletes.

The US Olympic and Paralympic Committee sent a survey over the weekend to more than 4,000 athletes on the coronavirus pandemic and the Games, and they received responses from 1,780, reports Xinhua news agency.

The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committees announced on Sunday that they will not send a delegation of athletes to the Tokyo Games unless they were postponed.

Australia’s Olympic Committee also released a similar statement, saying that its athletes should prepare for a Tokyo Olympic Games “in the northern summer of 2021”.

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Ronaldinho released from Paraguayan prison on bail

It is also reported that Ronaldinho and Assis will stay at the four-star Palmaroga Hotel while authorities continue to investigate the case.

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Asuncion, April 8 : Ronaldinho will be allowed to leave jail after a Paraguayan judge granted his request for house arrest, prosecutors have said.

The Brazilian football great and his brother, Roberto Assis, have been held at a prison in Asuncion since March 6 for using fake passports.

The pair will be relocated to a hotel in the center of Asuncion after agreeing to pay $1.6 million in bail during a court hearing. Judges had rejected three previous bail requests by the brothers, reports Xinhua news agency.

“The bail amount was important,” prosecutor Osmar Legal told reporters on Tuesday. “They previously offered to use a house that was not even in their name as a guarantee. Now they have opened checking accounts in their name and deposited the amounts,” he added.

It is also reported that Ronaldinho and Assis will stay at the four-star Palmaroga Hotel while authorities continue to investigate the case.

The former Barcelona playmaker travelled with Assis to Paraguay on March 4 to participate in a children’s charity event and promote a new book. They were arrested later that day for entering the country with false travel documents.

The pair have denied any wrongdoing and said they were presented with the passports as a “gift” upon arriving in Asuncion.

Ronaldinho retired from football in 2018 after a career that included spells at Gremio, Paris Saint-Germain, Barcelona, Milan and Atletico Mineiro, among other clubs. He was a part of the Brazil team that won the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea and was twice voted the FIFA world player of the year.

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COVID-19: PM Modi urges sports personalities to keep spreading awareness

In fact, Kohli recently came out with a video where he requested everyone to stay indoors and help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

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New Delhi, April 3 : Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday spoke to eminent sports personalities that included the likes of BCCI President Sourav Ganguly, Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli, cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar, badminton world champion P.V. Sindhu and chess legend Viswanathan Anand as the country fights the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to IANS, sources in the know of developments said that the Prime Minister spoke to them about ways in which there can be more awareness creation and more efforts made to reach every citizen in the country so that the directives issued by the health department is followed by one and all.

“The Prime Minister had an interaction with not just cricketers, but also sports personalities from other fields. The basic idea was to ensure that they can then go ahead and pass on the message of staying safe and staying indoors to the masses. The PM acknowledged the contribution the sportspersons have made in spreading awareness and said that this is a battle that the country has to fight together and no better way than to get sports personalities to reach out to their fans and followers further,” the source said.

The sports personalities have been already doing their bit as they have not only donated funds to help fight the pandemic, but have also spread awareness messages on their social media platforms.

In fact, Kohli recently came out with a video where he requested everyone to stay indoors and help stop the spread of the coronavirus.

“Hello, I am Virat Kohli. Today I am speaking to you not as an India player, but as a citizen of the country. What I have seen in the last few days — people moving in groups, not abiding by curfew rules, not following lockdown guidelines — it shows that we are taking the fight very lightly. But this fight is not as easy as it looks or feels.

“I wish to request everyone to please maintain social distancing and follow it. Also we should follow the directives given by the government and just for once think how you would feel if due to your negligence someone in your family gets affected by the virus. Please follow the experts as they are working very hard. It will only be successful when we follow our duties rather than going out in groups and breaking rules. This for me is an act against the country’s well-being. So now, I along with all of you wish to see things improve and please follow the directives of the government. Jai Hind!”

A list of 49 names from all prominent sports were compiled for the interaction with PM Modi. They are: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Cricket), Virat Kohli (Cricket), Rohit Sharma (Cricket), Mamatha Poojary (Kabaddi), Sourav Ganguly (Cricket), Sachin Tendulkar (Cricket), Virender Sehwag (Cricket), Mohd Shami (Cricket), KL Rahul (Cricket), Cheteshwar Pujara (Cricket), Yuvraj Singh (Cricket), Zaheer Khan (Cricket), PT Usha (Athletics), Yogeshwar Dutt (Wrestling), Bajrang Punia (Wrestling), Vinesh Phogat (Wrestling), PV Sindhu (Badminton), Mary Kom (Boxing), Hima Das (Athletics), Viswanathan Anand (Chess), Rani Rampal (Hockey), Deepika Kumari (Archery), Mirabai Chanu (Weightlifting), Neeraj Chopra (Athletics), Sharad Kumar (Para Athletics), Apurvi Chandela (Shooting), Manu Bhaker (Shooting), Tarundeep Rai (Archery), Bhaichung Bhutia (Football), Sardara Singh (Hockey)Achanta Sharath Kamal (Table Tennis), Amit Panghal (Boxing), Gagan Narang (Shooting), Anju Bobby George (Athletics), Rohan Bopanna (Tennis), Ankita Raina (Tennis), Sai Praneeth (Badminton), Srihari Natraj (Swimming), Harmeet Desai (Table Tennis), Abhishek Verma (Shooting), Avinash Sable (Athletics), KT Irfan (Athletics), Lovlina Boroghain (Boxing), Simranjeet Kaur (Boxing), Jeremy (Weightlifting), Bhavani Devi (Fencing), Pramod Bhagat (Para Badminton).

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Warne names Akram, Fleming as captains of his greatest Pakistan, New Zealand XIs

The pace battery consists of Akram, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis while off-break bowler Saqlain Mushtaq and leggie Mushtaq Ahmed completed the spin department.

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Shane Warne

New Delhi, April 2 : Former Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne on Thursday picked the greatest Pakistan and New Zealand XI he played against during his playing days.

Warne picked Wasim Akram as the captain of the Pakistani XI. “Akram was the best bowler that I saw, his skill with the ball was exceptional,” Warne said on Instagram.

He picked Saeed Anwar to open the innings alongside Aamir Sohail. The middle order comprises of Mohammad Yousuf, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Younis Khan with Moin Khan as the wicket-keeper.

The pace battery consists of Akram, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis while off-break bowler Saqlain Mushtaq and leggie Mushtaq Ahmed completed the spin department.

As for the greatest New Zealand XI, the spin legend picked Stephen Fleming as the skipper. In fact, Warne said that Fleming was the best captain he played against. Alongside Fleming, Warne picked the likes of Shane Bond, Daniel Vettori, Brendon McCullum, Danny Morrison and Martin Crowe in his best New Zealand XI.

Warne’s greatest Pakistan XI: Saeed Anwar, Aamir Sohail, Mohammad Yousuf, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Moin Khan (wk), Wasim Akram (c), Saqlain Mushtaq, Mushtaq Ahmed, Shoaib Akhtar and Waqar Younis.

Warne’s greatest New Zealand XI: John Wright, Brendon McCullum, Andrew Jones, Martin Crowe, Stephen Fleming (c), Nathan Astle, Chris Cairns, Daniel Vettori, Shane Bond, Simon Doull and Danny Morrison

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