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Super Sindhu conquers Marin to win her maiden India Open title

The win also narrowed down Sindhu’s head-to-head record against the Spaniard to 4-5. Sindhu had last defeated Marin in the BWF Super Series in Dubai last year.

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New Delhi, Apr 2 : Rio Olympics silver medallist PV Sindhu produced a superlative performance beating reigning Olympic champion Carolina Marin of Spain 21-19 21-16 to win her maiden India Open Super Series title, here on Sunday.

In front of a partisan home crowd at the Sirifort Sports Complex, the third seeded Indian dominated the match from the start to win the summit clash in 46 minutes.

The win also narrowed down Sindhu’s head-to-head record against the Spaniard to 4-5. Sindhu had last defeated Marin in the BWF Super Series in Dubai last year.

Earlier, Viktor Axelsen of Denmark clinched the men’s singles title beating Chinese Taipei’s Tien Chen Chou in straight games.

Third seed Axelsen took just 36 minutes to edge past Chou 21-13 21-10 to claim his maiden India Open title at the Siri Fort Sports Complex.

In a much-anticipated match of the evening, a replay of Rio Olympics title showdown, the star Indian shuttler came out with a purpose and looked determined for a revenge.

On the day, Sindhu was far better than Marin controlling the proceedings with ease.

Marin was guilty of committing plenty of unforced errors with Sindhu’s deft drops and powerful cross-court smashes also keeping the Spaniard at bay.

In both the games, it was Sindhu who took the initiative and set the tempo with early leads.

In the opening game Sindhu raced to a 6-1 lead before Marin slowly and steadily clawed her way back into the affair.

After the first six points, it was a closely fought encounter between the two of the world’s best shuttlers.

Sindhu went into the break with a slim 11-9 lead.

The intense fight continued thereafter and at one stage both the shuttlers were locked at 16-16 when Marin won a brilliant rally with a cross court drop shot.

For the first time in the game, Marin took a slim 19-18 lead over Sindhu but the Indian came back strongly to deny her opponent any breathing space with a smash that was followed by a drop shot at net to even the scores t 19-19.

The Indian reached game point when Marin found the net and she wrapped it up in no time with a body smash.

In the second game, Sindhu continued in the same vein to race to a 4-0 lead.

Just like the opening game, Marin quietly clawed her way back into the game to reduce the margin to 6-7.

But Sindhu Sunday was just way above her rival as he managed to hold on to her lead to go into the breather leading 11-9 and then did just enough to keep her dominance.

Much to the expectation of the crowd, Sindhu reached the game and match point at 20-15 when Marin committed another unforced error.

The Spaniard managed to save one match point but Sindhu sealed it on the very next point when Marin found the net again.

In other title clashes of the day, seventh seeded Japanese duo of Shiho Tanaka and Koharu Yonemoto stunned third seeded compatriots Naoko Fukuman and Kurumi Yonao 16-21 21-19 21-10 to lift the women’s doubles title.

Top seeds Siwei Zheng and Qingchen Chen of China defeated countrymen and second seeds Lu Kai and Huang Yaqiong 22-24 21-14 21-17 to claim the mixed doubles title.

The men’s doubles crown was annexed by fourth seeded Indonesian pair of Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo, who beat sixth seeds compatriots Ricky Karandasuwardi and Angga Pratama 21-11 21-15 in a contest that lasted exactly half-an-hour.

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Our style of play is non-negotiable: Mumbai City boss Lobera

It also means that Jahouh will now miss Mumbai’s next match against the reigning ISL Shield winners FC Goa.

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Sergio Lobera

Panaji: After Sergio Lobera’s reign at Mumbai City got off on the wrong foot on Saturday with a 1-0 loss to NorthEast United, the Spaniard said that his attack oriented possession-based game was non-negotiable.

“Our style of play is non-negotiable. I used some players in different positions from what they are used, for example Adam in right wing but I believe he has the experience to adjust. We have to improve a lot of course,” Lobera told media after the match.

Mumbai went in with two strikers up front with Adam Le Fondre playing as a make shift right winger along with Bartholomew Ogbeche. The Englishman created some good chances in the first half but a red card to midfield mainstay Ahmed Jahouh and Rowllin Borges conceding a penalty in the second meant at Mumbai ended up losing the match 1-0.

It also means that Jahouh will now miss Mumbai’s next match against the reigning ISL Shield winners FC Goa.

“Today (the red card) was a big problem for us. It changed the game, we were playing with 10 men and missing a very important player. But for the next game, I have 28 players, I am very happy with my squad. Just one player is not an excuse for losing the next game,” said Lobera.

“We need to improve, we had a short pre-season and have a short time between games. But it is my job to improve the level of the team and I am very positive that it is possible for the next game.”

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ATP Finals: Thiem beats Djokovic to reach 2nd successive final

He will now face either Daniil Medvedev or Nadal in the final which is scheduled to be played on Sunday.

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Dominic Thiem

London: Dominic Thiem outlasted world no.1 Novak Djokovic in a gripping last-four clash to reach his second successive final at the ATP Finals in the O2 Arena in London. Thiem, ranked third behind Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, won the match 7-5, 6-7(10), 7-6(5).

Thiem broke serve at 5-5 in the first set and sealed it with an ace. Djokovic, however, grinded his way to victory in the second set, denying Thiem the win despite the Austrian getting four chances to seal the game.

The third game was also pushed to a tiebreaker, which was started by Thiem but he went on to lose the next three points. He however roared back to win the next six points and while Djokovic saved a fifth match point, Thiem got the job done at the next opportunity.

He will now face either Daniil Medvedev or Nadal in the final which is scheduled to be played on Sunday.

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Even our reserves are quick, you don’t see this kind of attack: Shami

The biggest advantage is that I can now prepare for the upcoming series without any pressure. There is no burden on me. I am very comfortable at the moment.

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mohammed-shami

New Delhi, Nov 21: The depth in the fast bowling department and the camaraderie that the players share between them are among the biggest reasons why India’s pace battery is rated as one of the best in the world, according to leading pacer Mohammed Shami.

Shami and Jasprit Bumrah are considered the core of a plethora of fast bowlers who have been integral to India’s success in Test cricket in recent years.

“Our fast bowling group can bowl at 140 kmph plus and you need that kind of pace in Australia,” Shami said in an interview on the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) official website.

“Even our reserves are quick, you don’t get to see that kind of an attack. We thrive on challenges. We have the experience. We have variety in our spin bowling attack too. We can bowl fast but we are all different, our skills are different. India have quality batsmen and we bowl at them in the nets. We don’t look at names, we focus on our skills. You can be a world-class batsman, but one good ball will still get you out,” Shami said.

India will be banking on Shami and Co. during their upcoming tour of Australia. The 30-year-old pacer comes into the series after a successfull Indian Premier League in which he took 20 wickets in 14 matches.

“My performances for Kings XI Punjab in IPL has given me a lot of confidence and put me in the right zone. The biggest advantage is that I can now prepare for the upcoming series without any pressure. There is no burden on me. I am very comfortable at the moment. I had worked hard on my bowling and my fitness in the lockdown. I knew that IPL would take place sooner or later and I was preparing myself for it,” he said.

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