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Thrill, pressure & competitiveness similar in poker and cricket, says Dhoni

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New Delhi, July 22 : PokerStars India, one of Indias most popular online poker portals, has announced former India captain M.S. Dhoni as its new brand ambassador.

“I am excited to be associated with the PokerStars family. The thrill, the excitement, the pressure and the competitiveness of it – these are just some parallels I can draw between poker and cricket,” said Dhoni.

“In the last few years there has been a change in the mindset of people when they think of online poker. Online poker like any game of skill requires one to be strategic and play responsibly. Slowly but surely it is being recognised as a sport that is fun and quick to learn but rich in its complexity.

“With this collaboration we hope to take online poker to a larger audience.” he added.

To mark his ambassadorship with the brand, the veteran cricketer stars in PokerStars India’s latest campaign – ‘I’m In’ in which Dhoni can be seen enjoying a game of poker with three unique personalities, while inviting others to join in the fun game of skill and thrills.

“It’s already well established that MS Dhoni, who has led India to many international victories, is one of the all-time cricketing greats. What is less known is that his Zen-like poise, combined with his ability to make fearless decisions, make him a perfect poker player and a truly valuable member of Team PokerStars India,” said Ankur Dewani, CEO, Sachiko Gaming.

“With MS Dhoni at its heart, the campaign showcases how poker is a game for absolutely anyone, a truly universal sport. We cannot wait to see the response of our audience and players across the country,” he added.

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Sourav Ganguly complains of chest pain, admitted to Apollo Hospital

Ganguly, according to reports, felt uneasiness last night and suffered from mild chest pain earlier today. He was subsequently brought to the Apollo Hospital.

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Sourav Ganguly

BCCI president Sourav Ganguly was admitted to Apollo Hospital in Kolkata on January 27, after he complained of chest pain. The former Indian cricket team captain had undergone an angioplasty earlier this month after suffering from a mild heart attack.

Ganguly, according to reports, felt uneasiness last night and suffered from mild chest pain earlier today. He was subsequently brought to the Apollo Hospital.

On January 2, he was admitted to the Woodlands Hospital after reporting “chest discomfort, heaviness of head, vomiting and a spell of dizziness”. He was diagnosed with blockages in three coronary arteries.

Ganguly was discharged on January 7, after undergoing a successful angioplasty to clear the artillery blockages. The doctors, however, advised him to undergo angioplasty on other coronary arteries as well.

The condition of Ganguly was stated to be “stable” after being admitted at Apollo Hospital, The Indian Express reported citing family sources.

Ganguly, 48, had retired from international cricket in 2008. He was considered as one of the most successful Indian captains, having taken the team to the finals of 2003 World Cup. He was unanimously elected as BCCI chief in October 2019.

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Virat Kohli issued notice by Kerala HC over association with online rummy game

The action by the court came while hearing a petition which sought a ban on online rummy games. The Chief Justice-headed bench asked the Kerala government to file a reply on the demand raised by the petitioner.

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Virat Kohli

The Kerala High Court on January 27 issued a notice to Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli over his association with an online rummy game portal. Along with Kohli, the notices were also sent to actors Thammanna and Aju Vargheese.

The action by the court came while hearing a petition which sought a ban on online rummy games. The petition was moved by Pauly Vadakkan, a native of Thrissur.

The division bench of Kerala HC, headed by Chief Justice S Manikumar, asked the Kerala government to file a reply on the demand raised by the petitioner.

The petitioner also sought action against the brand ambassadors, citing their role in “attracting the youth” towards the “addictive” rummy portals.

“The stars, who are the brand ambassadors, attracted the audience and took part in the competition,” news agency ANI quoted the petition as saying.

The plea pointed out before the court that several persons died by suicide after losing huge amounts of money through only rummy games. The HC was appealed to issue an immediate ban on such portals.

“Online Rummy is within the limits of gambling…It should be legally prohibited. Other states have done the same. Kerala has a 1960 law. But no other steps have been taken,” the petitioner added.

The online rummy market has surged in India over the past couple of years, primarily due to the growth in usage of mobile internet.

“Because of the extensive demographic and geographic reach of mobile gaming, the industry currently is at Rs 2,000 crore and is expected to grow by 34 percent annually,” Hardik Parekh, Director, Sachar Gaming said.

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Cricket Australia Tells ICC It Couldn’t Identify Those Who Racially Abused Indian Cricketers: Report

Play was halted for a few minutes on the fourth day of the third Test on January 10 after Mohammed Siraj complained of racial abuse from the crowd

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Tim Paine

Cricket Australia has told the ICC that it was unable to identify spectators who racially abused Indian players during the Sydney Test and the six who were ejected from the stands were not the real culprits, a media report stated on Tuesday.

‘The Age’ reported that the CA investigators “have cleared the six men ejected from their seats during the Sydney Test of racially abusing Mohammed Siraj.”

CA has sent the findings to the ICC after a probe. The ICC had given the body 14 days to lodge a report.

“CA, which is awaiting a final report from NSW Police, is satisfied that the six men who were walked out of the lower tier of the Clive Churchill and Brewongle stand by police on the fourth afternoon of the Test did not make remarks of a racial nature to players,” the newspaper said.

“The report (of CA to the ICC) says while they believed players had been racially abused, CA investigators were unable to identify the culprits,” it said.

Play was halted for a few minutes on the fourth day of the third Test on January 10 after Siraj complained of racial abuse from the crowd.

This prompted the security personnel to enter the stands and look for the mischief-mongers before six people were asked to leave.

The BCCI had lodged a formal complaint and the CA had offered an unreserved apology.

The newspaper report said CA “interviewed multiple Indian players and took witness accounts from spectators, among them people who contacted CA to volunteer what they saw and heard during the match.”

“Sources now say the Indians had warned on the ground that they wouldn’t resume play until their complaint was acted upon,” the newspaper said.

“CA was told the men were singing to Siraj, who after complaining to umpires then pointed in their direction when police arrived.”

The newspaper also claimed one of the six men kicked out had said during the match that Siraj was upset after being hit for two sixes in an over and had gone to umpires when a crowd member said “Welcome to Sydney, Siraj”.

In its complaint, the BCCI had alleged that Siraj and his senior pace partner Jasprit Bumrah were abused racially for two consecutive days during the match in Sydney.

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