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Indian shuttlers fined for withdrawing from Uganda Badminton event

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Badminton
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Kampala, Feb 22: Indian players Harshit Aggarwal and Chaliha Orijit will be fined for their late withdraw from the 2018 Uganda International Badminton Open Championship.

“The two players will be fined $150 for late withdraw as per the rules set by the Badminton World Federation,” Simon Mugabi, the Chief Executive Officer of the Uganda Badminton Association (UBA), told Xinhua.

The Championship, a World Series sanctioned by the Badminton World Federation (BWF), will take place at the Lugogo Arena in Kampala from February 22 to 25.

Mugabi explained that the two Indian players would have been fined $650 each if they had not communicated in advance.

“We expect a very explosive tournament because over 15 foreign players will take part,” said Mugabi, who also added that Germany’s Jonathan Persson is yet to arrive.

Several foreign players, including top seed for the tournament Georges Juliean Paul, have arrived in Uganda ahead of the qualifiers for the main draw which starts on Thursday. Juliean Paul is fresh from winning the All Africa Senior Championship in Algeria last weekend.

Bahaedeen Ahmad Alshannik of Jordan, who is ranked second in the men’s singles, said he was happy to be in Uganda for the tournament. “I have prepared well and expect a very competitive event,” said Alshannik.

Former top African player Edwin Ekiring, who has represented Uganda at three Olympic Games, told Xinhua that he has recovered well from the shin injury he had for most of last year.

“I have prepared well with my team in Holland,” added Ekiring, who was unlucky to get injured in the final of the same tournament last year and did not continue.

The event will attract players from Uganda, Kenya, Burundi, Algeria, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, India, the Netherlands, Syria, Germany, France, Turkey, Zambia and the Republic of Maldives, among others.

IANS

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Ranveer Singh has ‘fan moment’ on meeting P.V. Sindhu

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Mumbai, Sep 26: Actor Ranveer Singh says he had a fan moment meeting Indian star shuttler P.V. Sindhu and added that he loves her spirit.

Ranveer met Sindhu on Tuesday at the Forbes India Tycoon Of Tomorrow event, where he was feted with the Youth Icon Award.

Sindhu shared a photograph of herself with the actor and captioned it: “Finally we meet! It was such a pleasure meeting you and an absolute fan moment.I congratulate you for all the success and I wish you all the very best for your future endeavours. I would rather call you ‘rockstar’ than Ranveer Singh.”

To which, Ranveer replied: “Yes, finally! it was a pleasure indeed! and likewise, a fan moment for me too… You make us so proud, champ! Love your spirit. May you continue to shine bright.”

On the acting front, Ranveer is currently busy shooting for filmmaker Rohit Shetty’s “Simmba”, which also features actor Saif Ali Khan’s daughter Sara.

IANS

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Asia Cup: Afghanistan pull off thrilling last-ball tie with India

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Mohammad Shahzad

Dubai, Sep 26 (IANS) Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s comeback as skipper, albiet for a game ended in a thrilling tie against a resurgent Afghanistan in their final Super Four match of the Asia Cup at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium here on Tuesday.

Chasing a competitive 253, the defending champions got off to a flier from the new opening pair of Lokesh Rahul (60 off 66 balls; 4X5, 6X1) and Ambati Rayudu (57 off 49; 4X4, 6X4) before a mini collapse, coupled with a few run-outs and umpiring errors, eventually resulted in a tie.

Needing 7 off the final over, Ravindra Jadeja (25 off 34; 4X1) struck a boundary on the second ball off leg-spinner Rashid Khan before taking two singles with last man Khaleel Ahmed in company.

With 1 needed off the final two balls, Jadeja pulled the fifth delivery — a shorter one towards midwicket only to find Najibullah running in from deep to grab it with both hands and help Afghanistan bow out of the tournament with their head held high.

Earlier, replacing the regular pair of Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan, Rahul and Rayudu got India to a 110-run opening stand before Mohammed Nabi managed to draw first blood with the wicket of Rayudu.

Rashid then joined the party by removing Rahul before Dinesh Karthik’s (44 off 66; 4X4) sedate knock stabilised things for the Men-in-Blue.

Karthik, however failed to get adequate support from the other end as Dhoni (8), Manish Pandey (8) and Kedar Jadhav (19) fell in quick succession before an umpiring blunder sent the Tamil Nadu stumper back in the hut.

Towards the end, Jadeja played a lone hand even as the bowlers — Deepak Chahar (12), Kuldeep Yadav (9) and Siddharth Kaul (0) — could hardly lend any support to the southpaw.

For the Afghans, pacer Aftab Alam and spin duo of Nabi and Rashid picked two wickets each while Javed Ahmadi picked one.

Earlier, electing to bat, Afghanistan rode opener Mohammad Shahzad’s entertaining century and a sensible innings from Nabi to post a healthy 252/8 against a relatively inexperienced Indian attack.

On a track where strokeplay wasn’t easy, Shahzad belted a brilliant 124 off 116 balls, laced with 11 boundaries and seven sixes, even as the rest of the top-five failed to reach double digits.

Nabi (64 off 56; 4X3, 6X4), however, played the perfect second fiddle to the wicketkeeper-batsman, raising a vital 48-run stand for the sixth wicket before finally losing Shahzad to part-timer Kedar Jadhav.

Thereafter, Nabi took the responsibility of pressing the accelerator even as the Indian bowlers bounced back well to leak just nine runs off the final three overs.

Brief Scores: Afghanistan: 252/8 (Mohammad Shahzad 124, Mohammad Nabi 64; Ravindra Jadeja 3/46) tie with India 252 (Lokesh Rahul 60, Ambati Rayudu 56, Dinesh Karthik 44; Mohammed Nabi 2/40, Rashid Khan 2/41).

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Kohli, Chanu conferred Khel Ratna; Neeraj, Hima get Arjuna award

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Arjuna Award Khel Ratna

New Delhi, Sep 25: Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli and world champion weightlifter Saikhom Mirabai Chanu were conferred with the country’s highest sporting honour — Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award — by President Ram Nath Kovind at the annual National Sports Awards ceremony here on Tuesday.

This year’s award ceremony was postponed to September 25 from the usual August 29 National Sports Day event due to the clash of dates with the Asian Games in Indonesia.

The Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award is given for a ‘spectacular and most outstanding performance in the field of sports by a sportsperson over a period of four years’. Both Kohli and Chanu received a medal, a citation and a cash prize of Rs 7 lakh.

Besides the Khel Ratna, star javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, sprinter Hima Das, table tennis star Manika Batra were among the 20 recipients of the prestigious Arjuna award.

The other Arjuna awardees were long distance runner Jinson Johnson, shuttler N.Sikki Reddy, boxer Satish Kumar, woman cricketer Smriti Mandhana, golfer Shubhankar Sharma, hockey stars Manpreet Singh and Savita Punia, Col. Ravi Rathore (Polo), shooters Rahi Sarnobat, Ankur Mittal, Shreyasi Singh, paddler G. Sathiyan, tennis player Rohan Bopanna, wrester Sumit, Pooja Kadian (Wushu).

Para athlete Ankur Dhama and para shuttler Manoj Sarkar were also conferred with the Arjuna award, that included statuettes, certificates and a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh each.

The President also gave away the Dronacharya awards to C.A. Kuttappa (Boxing), Vijay Sharma (Weightlifting), A. Srinivasa Rao (Table Tennis), Sukhdev Singh Pannu (Athletics).

Among the Dronacharya awardees for lifetime achievement were Clarence Lobo (Hockey), Tarak Sinha (Cricket), Jiwan Kumar Sharma (Judo) and V.R. Beedu (Athletics). The Dronacharya awardees were also given statuettes, certificates and a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh each.

The Dhyan Chand award, that also includes statuettes, certificates and a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh each were given to Satyadev Prasad (Archery), Bharat Kumar Chetri (Hockey), Bobby Aloysius (Athletics) and Chougale Dadu Dattatray (Wrestling).

IANS

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