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Former Pakistan great has his say on India in T20s without Kohli, Sharma

India in these T20Is against New Zealand, without Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul, has ushered in a new era of the shortest format of the game where the national team continues to make forays into what life after the trio could look like. Kohli and Sharma are India’s highest run scorers in the format and earlier coach Rahul Dravid had spoken about how giving a rest to the duo was crucial considering the ODI World Cup was on its way. “There are certain priorities we need to give to certain white-ball tournaments. So the priority after last year’s T20 World Cup has been these six games (ODIs against Sri Lanka and New Zealand) and Virat has played all these six games and he will get a bit of a break along with Rohit,” Dravid had said. But the idea of India possibly wanting to move o...
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Hockey World Cup final: Germany, Belgium battle for glory | Hockey News – Times of India

A cracker of a contest on the cardsBHUBANESWAR: At the 2012 London Olympics, as the Germany hockey team celebrated their gold-medal feat, Belgium were on their way home, having finished fifth. The Red Lions went back to the drawing board. Over six years they reinforced their strengths, worked on their weaknesses and did not stop until they achieved their goal of being the best in the world.The skills. The goals. The last-minute drama. This is how we got here 🤯The stage is set for the biggest game of a… https://t.co/gNXJN9hu8z— International Hockey Federation (@FIH_Hockey) 1674930501000Germany, on the other hand, are still looking for a major championship title a decade later. From a country with virtually no hockey culture, the defending champions became the most talked about with World...
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Shweta Sehrawat: From playing with boys as a kid to Under-19 World Cup cricket star | Cricket News – Times of India

Shweta Sehrawat helped her school win inter-zonal volleyball championshipsNEW DELHI: Sanjay and Seema Sehrawat from South Delhi have two daughters and a son. The daughters took up sports early but the son was not interested. Years after elder daughter Swati quit cricket to focus on academics, Shweta is now just a step away from becoming an U-19 World Cup winner. She is the star batter of the team which will clash with England in the final on Sunday.For years, Sanjay tried telling his peers that his daughter was good at cricket but no one bothered. The couple went to every game the daughter played. As Shweta went about powering India to the inaugural U-19 World Cup final over last fortnight, Sanjay started receiving calls from the same peers."Arey yaar teri beti toh bahut achcha khelti h...
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For ‘senior’ Shafali, another World Cup opportunity

At 16, Shafali Verma was India’s highest run scorer in her first senior T20 World Cup in 2020. Seven months earlier, she had become the youngest to feature in a T20 International at the age of 15. And so when she was caught behind by Alyssa Healy, in the third ball of an unsuccessful chase, while trying to go for a boundary, it was just seen as an off day for one of the most promising young cricketers. Cut to three years later, watching her lead India in the maiden U19 Women’s T20 World Cup final shouldn’t come as a surprise. However, the journey since the 2020 World Cup hasn’t been as smooth as many believed it would be for Shafali. Sunday presents an opportunity for Shafali to create happy memories of an ICC event. With over 2,000 runs in 74 games, Shafali has had a mixed run with the...
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Shakira set to release new song on her and Gerard Pique’s birthday: Report

Shakira will release a new track on her and now ex-partner Gerard Pique’s common birthday which falls on February 2, according to a report by Marca as per SPORTbible. Although there are rumours that Pique might be a topic again, it will be less direct and more subtle. The tune is with Karol G and the video was filmed in two days, according to the report. Shakira made a huge sum of money from an earlier song where she seemingly took a dig at Pique and his new girlfriend 23-year-old Clara Chia Marti. As per Marca, Telecinco’s morning show ‘El Programa de Ana Rosa’, Shakira has collected a whole lot of money from various streaming services for her most recent release. As per reports in Spanish media, Shakira is said to have made $512,000 from YouTube, $500,000 from Amazon Music, $360,000 ...
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Pedri leads win at Girona in 100th game for Barcelona

Pedri marked his 100th Barcelona appearance by scoring to squeeze past Girona 1-0 and increase their lead of the Spanish league on Saturday. The 20-year-old Pedri started on the bench as Xavi rotated his lineup ahead of a busy week, but the playmaker replaced the injured Ousmane Dembélé in the 25th minute. Girona stymied the league front-runner until Pedri’s fellow substitute, Jordi Alba, found him with a low cross at close range in the 61st. Pedri, who won the 2021 Golden Boy for the continent’s most promising under-21 player, is considered one of the pillars of Barcelona’s post-Messi rebuild. The Spain midfielder has scored six times this season. FINAL #GironaBarça 0-1 ✨ ¡@Pedri 𝗱𝗲𝗰𝗶𝗱𝗲 el 𝗱𝗲𝗿𝗯𝗶! ✨#LaLigaSantander pic.twitter.com/ToIPu5ymQJ — LaLiga (@LaLiga) January 28, 2023 Xavi’s ...
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Neeraj Chopra meets U-19 India women’s team before their final against England on Sunday

Olympic gold medal winning javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra on Saturday met the Indian contingent on the eve of their U19 T20 Women’s World Cup final against England on Sunday, a post shared by the BCCI revealed. The post which was captioned, “A Gold-standard meeting! 👏👏 Javelin thrower & Olympic Gold medallist @Neeraj_chopra1 interacted with #TeamIndia ahead of the #U19T20WorldCup Final!” showed the superstar javelin thrower in various moods as he interacted with the U-19 team. On Sunday, India captain Shafali Verma will chase history when she leads India against England in the first-ever ICC U-19 Women’s T20 World Cup final. For all their success at the international stage, the Indian women’s cricket team has never won a World Cup at any level and the young batter, who has been part ...
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Russia and Belarusian athletes at Asian Games: Asian athletes won’t lose medals, quotas says OCA acting president Randhir Singh

A ‘special quota system’ is currently being devised which will pave the way for athletes from Russia and Belarus to qualify for next year’s Paris Olympics – via Asia. Speaking to The Indian Express, acting president of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), Randhir Singh, said his organisation is in the process of designing a qualification pathway so that athletes from these two nations can vie for Olympic berths by competing in Asian tournaments without eating into the existing quotas meant for the continent’s athletes. The modalities, he added, are being worked on in collaboration with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and international sports federations. Earlier this week, the OCA invited Russian and Belarusian athletes – who have been exiled from many international sports follo...
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I’m quite tired and exhausted: Warner ahead of Test tour of India

An intense home season has left star Australian opener David Warner “tired and exhausted” ahead of the upcoming four-Test series in India, beginning in Nagpur on February 9. File | Photo Credit: AFP An intense home season has left star Australian opener David Warner "tired and exhausted" ahead of the upcoming four-Test series in India, beginning in Nagpur on February 9. The 36-year-old played in multiple formats in a hectic summer, including the ODI series against Zimbabwe, New Zealand, and England and Tests against West Indies and South Africa. Warner also competed in the T20 World Cup at home besides playing half a dozen games for Sydney Thunder in the Big Bash League (BBL). "It's been challenging. I'm quite tired and exhausted," Warner was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz. "A few guys ...
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Stefanos Tsitsipas tasked with Mission Impossible – stopping Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open

Novak Djokovic is 40 matches unbeaten in Australia. His 27-match-winning streak at the Australian Open is now an all-time record. He has not dropped more than eight games in each of his last three straight-sets wins. And now, as he takes on Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final, there is more than just a Grand Slam title at stake. The Serb is vying for a record-extending 10th singles title in Melbourne, which will equal Rafael Nadal’s all-time Major record of 22. Tsitsipas, after reaching the semifinal at three of the last four Australian Opens, is in his first Major final. The winner is also confirmed to usurp the World No. 1 spot from Carlos Alcaraz in the rankings. For Djokovic, though, this match is the culmination of a redemption arc following one of the most bizarre and polarising story...
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‘Probably will nag me for rest of my life’: Glenn Maxwell on missing India Tests | Cricket News – Times of India

MELBOURNE: Star Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell said missing the upcoming tour of India due to a freak injury will "nag me for the rest of my life".Maxwell had sustained a broken tibula in his left leg in November last year during a friend's birthday party, the incident sidelining him for three months."Probably will nag at me for the rest of my life," said Maxwell while doing commentary during a Big Bash League game on Fox Cricket."It's nice getting the opportunity to watch your teammates play, especially over there. I think they've got the squad that's probably as good as I've seen to go over to India since I've been watching Tests over there, anyway."The Border-Gavaskar Trophy will start with the opening Test in Nagpur on February 9.Australia, who haven't won a Test series in Ind...
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Hockey World Cup: India beat South Africa, finish joint 9th, lowest ever by a host nation | Hockey News – Times of India

BHUBANESWAR: India's campaign in the Men's Hockey World Cup ended with a second consecutive win in the placement playoffs at the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium in Rourkela on Saturday. Fans in Odisha once again took every available seat in the 20,000-capacity stadium to stand with the home team in what has been an otherwise sorry campaign for India, who beat South Africa 5-2 to end in joint-9th position along with Argentina.It's the worst ever finish by a host nation in a men's World Cup. India broke its own record of an 8th-place finish in Delhi 2010, which it held jointly with Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur 2002) and Argentina (Buenos Aires 1978). As it happened: India vs South AfricaLike against Japan, India dominated the South Africans as well. But while Japan's open play allowed the Indians mo...
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Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka crowned first ‘neutral’ Grand Slam champion | Tennis News – Times of India

MELBOURNE: With daring, resolve and a thunderous forehand, Aryna Sabalenka rose above geopolitical tumult to become the first player to claim a Grand Slam title as a neutral at the Australian Open.The big-hitting Belarusian overhauled Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina 4-6 6-3 6-4 in the final at Rod Laver Arena on Saturday while barred from representing the eastern European nation.Russian and Belarusian players are effectively "stateless" on the ATP and WTA tours, competing as individuals without national affiliation due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.Had Rybakina not switched allegiance to Kazakhstan in 2018, the Russia-born player would also have competed as a neutral.Perhaps for the first time ever at Rod Laver Arena, the championship match was played without fans waving the nationa...
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Home wildcards win Australian Open men’s doubles title | Tennis News – Times of India

MELBOURNE: Wildcard home duo Rinky Hijikata and Jason Kubler won a first Grand Slam crown with victory in the men's doubles final at the Australian Open on Saturday.The Australians did a celebratory chest bump and hugged tightly after defeating duo Hugo Nys of Monaco and Poland's Jan Zielinski 6-4, 7-6 (7/4), to the delight of the home crowd at Rod Laver Arena.It was Hijikata and Kubler's first event as a doubles pairing and ensures that the trophy stays in home hands, having been won last year by Australians Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis."Rinky and I definitely didn't think this was happening two weeks ago. Bit of a pleasant surprise," said Kubler on court."I've got to thank Rinky, he was the reason we teamed up for this tournament. Two weeks later we've got this trophy." !(funct...
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Mithali Raj roped in as WPL side Gujarat Giants’ mentor | Cricket News – Times of India

AHMEDABAD: Former India cricket captain Mithali Raj has been roped in as mentor and advisor by Women's Premier League (WPL) side Gujarat Giants ahead of the inaugural season, which will take place in March-April this year.Mithali, the highest run-getter in women's international cricket, had retired last year from all formats after a 23-year-long career.As mentor of the side, the 40-year-old cricketer will also promote women's cricket and help develop the sport at the grassroots level in Gujarat.The Ahmedabad franchise had emerged the costliest of the five teams during the auction recently, with Adani Sportsline shelling out Rs 1289 crore.Mithali said the new BCCI initiative will help women's cricket grow steadily and encourage young players to take up cricket professionally."The inaugur...
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Elena Rybakina to enter top 10 but says career boost won’t change her | Tennis News – Times of India

MELBOURNE: Elena Rybakina will become the first Kazakh tennis player to enter the top 10 singles world rankings after her run to the Australian Open final on Saturday, making up somewhat for the points she missed out on in her Wimbledon triumph last summer.But the Russian-born player said the lift would not change her."I don't think tomorrow I'm going to feel different just because of the ranking now," she told reporters.Rybakina, who switched allegiance to Kazakhstan in 2018, was beaten 4-6 6-3 6-4 by Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka in the Melbourne Park final and will rise to number 10 in the world from number 25 when the rankings are updated on Monday.She lost out on 2,000 ranking points after her Wimbledon win because the Grand Slam was stripped of points for banning Russian and Belarusi...
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‘Birthday girl’ Shafali Verma in pursuit of World Cup title for India | Cricket News – Times of India

POTCHEFSTROOM: Batting sensation Shafali Verma will chase history when she leads India against England in the first-ever ICC U-19 Women's T20 World Cup final here on Sunday.For all their success at the international stage, the Indian women's cricket team has never won a World Cup at any level and the young batter, who has been part of two World Cup and one Commonwealth Games final with the senior team, will look to bring the elusive title home.The seniors have made the World Cup final on three occasions across formats only to have returned with bitter memories -- losing to Australia by 98 runs in 2005 and losing to England by 9 runs in 2017 in the ODIs, and in T20Is they went down in the 2020 final to the Aussies by 85 runs.The youngster from Rohtak has been part of two World Cups acros...
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Under-19 Women’s T20 World Cup final | ‘Birthday girl’ Shafali Verma in pursuit of title for India

Batting sensation Shafali Verma will chase history when she leads India against England in the first-ever ICC U-19 Women's T20 World Cup final in Potchefstroom on January 29, 2023. For all their success at the international stage, the Indian women's cricket team has never won a World Cup at any level and the young batter, who has been part of two World Cup and one Commonwealth Games final with the senior team, will look to bring the elusive title home. The seniors have made the World Cup final on three occasions across formats only to have returned with bitter memories — losing to Australia by 98 runs in 2005 and losing to England by 9 runs in 2017 in the ODIs, and in T20Is they went down in the 2020 final to the Aussies by 85 runs. The youngster from Rohtak has been part of two World C...
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Lack of tactical awareness, non-existent club culture behind India’s early exit: Oltmans

Former India men’s hockey head coach Roelant Oltmans has blamed the lack of tactical awareness and a non-existent club culture for India’s early exit in the ongoing edition of the FIH Men’s World Cup. India lost the crossover match to New Zealand and failed to make the quarter-finals after going down 4-5 in sudden death. India’s current head coach Graham Reid had also voiced concern about the lack of club culture after the Hockey India League (HIL) became defunct in 2017. “There is no club culture in India, that is for sure. And the players need to continue playing games, that this team is lacking,” Oltmans, who was at the helm of affairs of the Indian team from 2015 to 2017, told PTI in an interview. “These Indians are fantastic hockey players, no doubt about that. But you need to kno...