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Sports

Kyle Walker will give ‘fantastic’ Kylian Mbappe respect he deserves, but not too much

England defender Kyle Walker is well aware that dealing with France’s Kylian Mbappe in the World Cup quarter-finals is not going to be easy, and he is counting on his experience of playing against the tournament’s top scorer in the past. England moved into the last 16 with a 3-0 win over Senegal to set up a mouth-watering clash with France after the reigning world champions brushed aside Poland, with Mbappe scoring twice to take his tally to five goals in Qatar.The focus will be on whether 32-year-old Walker, who returned from groin surgery before the World Cup, can handle the blistering pace of the 23-year-old Mbappe. The defender, however, said they were not playing a “solo sport” like tennis but a team game where they would have to work collectively. “I do understand what I need to d...
Sports

Britain’s LTA fined by ATP for banning Russians, Belarusians

The ATP on Wednesday fined Britain’s Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) 820,000 pounds ($1 million) for banning male players from Russia and Belarus from this year’s summer grasscourt events ahead of the Championships over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Players were banned from the UK grass-court tournaments held in the build-up to Wimbledon, which became the first Grand Slam tournament to ban individual competitors from the two countries — a move that was condemned by the men’s and women’s tours. “The LTA is deeply disappointed with this,” the LTA said in a statement. “The ATP, in its finding, has shown no recognition of the exceptional circumstances created by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, or the international sporting community and UK Government’s response to that invasion.” The ATP said ...
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IOA made significant progress, to take decision on final warning after Dec 10 elections: IOC

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has noted the “significant progress” made by the IOA in resolving its governance issues but until it completes the elections process on December 10 the global body won’t decide on withdrawing the warning for a ban on India. The IOC, in September, had directed Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to hold elections by December or face a ban. The Supreme Court of India had then appointed former Justice L Nageswara Rao to amend the constitution of IOA and prepare the electoral college. “With respect to India, the IOC Executive Board received a report on the situation of NOC of India following the decision taken by the Executive Board in September 2022 to issue a final warning to NOC,” said James McLeod, Director of Olympic Solidarity and NOC Relations o...
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Mr Avocado Head has Morocco daring to dream

Thanks to Walid Regragui, the coach who has made Morocco the first Arab nation to reach the World Cup quarter-finals, avocados may just be the nation’s favourite fruit. When the appointment of Regragui following the departure of Bosnian Vahid Halilhodzic was announced in August, underwhelmed pundits branded him “avocado head” as a belittling term of derision. But the shaved-headed coach, who teased those critics at the tournament in Qatar by holding an avocado with a soccer ball inside it and pointing his finger at his head, has more than proved his credentials. The previously unheralded Regragui, who led Wydad to the Moroccan league and CAF Champions League double last season, masterminded a win for the ages against mighty Spain in the last 16 on Tuesday. The Atlas Lions produced an am...
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Unnati Hooda becomes first Indian to enter U-17 women’s singles final of Badminton Asia Junior C’ships

Rising shuttler Unnati Hooda on Saturday became the first Indian to enter the U-17 women’s singles final of the Badminton Asia Junior Championships in Nothaburi, Thailand after beating Japan’s Mion Yokouchi in straight games. Unnati won 21-8, 21-17 over her Japanese rival in the women’s U-17 singles semifinals. She faces Sarunrak Vitidsarn of Thailand in the gold medal match on Sunday. Under-15 singles player Anish Thoppani and U-17 men’s doubles pair of Arsh Mohammad and Sanskar Saraswat also posted brilliant victories to move into the finals. Name: Unnati Hooda 🌟Job: Scripting history 😎 Well done champ, proud of you! 👌 📸: Badminton Association of Thailand@himantabiswa | @sanjay091968 | @lakhaniarun1#AsianJuniorChampionships#IndiaontheRise#Badminton pic.twitter.com/a0Y3yugKgd — BAI Me...
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Kraigg Brathwaite fights back in opener after Marnus Labuschagne landmark

Marnus Labuschagne hit an unbeaten 104 to add to his first innings of 204 to become the third Australian with single and double centuries in a Test as Australia set the West Indies an unlikely 498 runs to win the opening Test. West Indies reached stumps Saturday at 192-3 in its second innings in 62 overs on the fourth day, needing another 306 runs for what would be a sensational victory. Australia earlier declared on 182-2 at lunch with Labuschagne and Steve Smith 20 not out after having resumed the fourth day on 29-1. The home side scored 153 runs in the session in just 26 overs. The 81-run stand between Labuschagne and Smith followed their 251-run third-wicket stand in the first innings where Smith also scored an unbeaten 200. It's all set for an intense day 5 in Perth! Make your way...
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Group stage excels as World Cup just keeps giving – now for the serious bit

The first World Cup hosted by an Arab nation enters its knockout phase on Saturday, but such has been the daily rollercoaster of shocks, comebacks and head-spinning group climaxes that everyone involved should perhaps lie down for a week in a dark room before carrying on. Forty-eight games and 120 goals into the latest edition of FIFA’s showpiece and there has barely been a dull moment at a tournament that just keeps giving. The last three nights of simultaneous group action were mind-boggling, with Japan stunning Spain to qualify from Group E and South Korea scoring a stoppage-time winner to beat Portugal and make it out of Group H. A wild and memorable ending to the Group Stage! See matchday thirteen in 60 seconds ⏲️#FIFAWorldCup | #Qatar2022 pic.twitter.com/p3bYGpLa0U — FIFA World C...
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Just trying to be as consistent as possible: Ruturaj Gaikwad

In the form of his life, Maharashtra skipper Ruturaj Gaikwad on Friday said being consistent and converting his starts into big hundreds has been his focus as they finished runners-up in the Vijay Hazare Trophy after making their maiden final. Gaikwad slammed four hundred from five innings including a double century to finish with 660 runs at an astounding average of 220. “I’m just trying to enjoy the game and stay in the present, looking to give good starts and then convert them into big hundreds. I’m just trying to become as consistent as possible,” Gaikwad, who was adjudged Player of the Series, said after they lost the final to Saurashtra by five wickets. Gaikwad suffered an injury during the season and could not play all the matches for Maharashtra. “It was important for me to get...
Sports

France will need patience against sturdy Poland in last 16

France will start their World Cup last-16 clash as overwhelming favorite’s on Sunday but opponents Poland are well equipped to derail Les Bleus’ title defense at the Al Thumama stadium. France qualified for the knockout phase with a game to spare after two stylish performances against Australia and Denmark, and were quick to move on from a 1-0 defeat by Tunisia in the last Group D match after playing with a reserve side. Les Bleus will face 𝗣𝗢𝗟𝗔𝗡𝗗 🇵🇱 in the 𝗹𝗮𝘀𝘁 𝟭𝟲 👊 Cancel your Sunday afternoon plans 😉#FiersdetreBleus pic.twitter.com/u6gFUEFJLL — French Team ⭐⭐ (@FrenchTeam) November 30, 2022 Poland went through despite a 2-0 loss to Argentina in their last Group C game, carried through the opening phase by their sturdy defence and the touch of striker Robert Lewandowski. France will ...
Sports

China fines former NBA star Lin over quarantine comments

Former NBA star Jeremy Lin, who plays for a Chinese team, was fined 10,000 yuan (USD 1,400) for “inappropriate remarks” on social media about quarantine facilities ahead of a game, China’s professional league announced on Friday, as the government tries to stop protests against anti-virus controls that are among the world’s most stringent. Also on Friday, more cities eased restrictions, allowing shopping malls, supermarkets and other businesses to reopen following protests last weekend in Shanghai and other areas in which some crowds called for President Xi Jinping to resign. Urumqi in the northwest, site of a deadly fire that triggered the protests, announced supermarkets and other businesses were reopening. Lin, who plays for the Loong Lions Basketball Club, made “inappropriate remark...
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Eliud Kipchoge set for Boston Marathon debut next year

Kenya’s marathon world record-holder Eliud Kipchoge will make his Boston Marathon debut on April 17 next year, the 38-year-old said on Thursday, as he seeks a fifth victory in one of the six World Marathon Majors. The two-times Olympic champion has already triumphed in the London, Berlin, Chicago and Tokyo marathons which are part of the majors and said in a statement released by his NN Running Team that he was ready for the next step. “I’m happy to announce in April I will compete in the Boston Marathon,” Rio and Tokyo Olympic champion Kipchoge said. “A new chapter in my Abbott World Marathon Majors journey.” Boston… it’s time.@EliudKipchoge #BostonMarathon #oneBOSTON #Boston127 pic.twitter.com/1QTWuSbiGq — Boston Marathon (@bostonmarathon) December 1, 2022 Kipchoge, who has won 15 ou...
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Ghana, Uruguay meet again at World Cup after 2010 drama

Ghana and Uruguay meet at the World Cup on Friday in a repeat of one of the tournament’s most contentious games.“It was a really, really long time ago,” Ghana coach Otto Addo said. Maybe so, but for to many Ghanaians the quarterfinal defeat to Uruguay in the 2010 World Cup is still a raw and painful memory. Uruguay striker Luis Suarez’s deliberate handball on the goal-line at the end of extra time denied Ghana a certain goal and a place in history as the first African team to reach the semis. Suarez was sent off for the handball but celebrated wildly on the sidelines when Asamoah Gyan hit the resulting penalty off the crossbar. Uruguay won the ensuing penalty shootout. To make it worse, Suarez boasted after the 2010 game: “Truth is, it was worth it.” Twelve years later, Ghana now has a...
Sports

Who could buy Manchester United and how much is it worth?

Manchester United’s owners, the Glazer family, are considering selling the club as they explore “strategic alternatives”. If the Glazers decided to follow through with the sale of the Old Trafford club, here could be some of the possible buyers: JIM RATCLIFFE British billionaire Ratcliffe, a long-standing fan of the 20-times English champions, declared his interest in August but said two months later he was told by the Glazers the Premier League side was not for sale when he contacted the family. He had also failed this year in an attempt to buy London club Chelsea, ultimately bought by an investment group led by American Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital. Ratcliffe’s name was widely mentioned among United fans as someone many would welcome, although there are fears he might be priced o...
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Emotional Bailey Wright dedicates Australia win to mother-in-law

Australia defender Bailey Wright was grieving on Thursday, having learned after the Socceroos’ 1-0 upset of Denmark at the World Cup that his mother-in-law had died. Wright, who plays for Sunderland in the second tier of English soccer, had told Australian reporters he had grave fears for his mother-in-law’s health after receiving a message from his wife after the match on Wednesday. Football Australia confirmed on Thursday morning that Wright’s mother-in-law had died and the defender would not appear for media. Wright had paid an emotional tribute to his mother-in-law and wife at the stadium on Wednesday night. “I’ve just come in from a message from my wife. I just want to dedicate this to my wife, bless her, and her mum,” Wright had said at the stadium late on Wednesday. “I’ll be hone...
Sports

I am not going anywhere even if Germany are eliminated, says Hansi Flick

Germany coach Hansi Flick has no plans to step down if the four-time world champions crash out of the World Cup early for the second straight tournament, he said on Wednesday. Flick, who took over last year after Joachim Loew’s 15 years at the helm, has seen his team lose their Group E opener to Japan before rescuing a 1-1 draw with Spain thanks to a late equaliser. The Germans were eliminated in the first round at the 2018 World Cup, at that time their earliest exit in over 80 years. “I can confirm it (I will be staying on) from my side but I have a contract until 2024 and I look forward to the home Euros (in 2024) but it is a long time until then,” he told a news conference. Germany will host the Euro 2024 tournament. 🎙️ @esmuellert_: “We got a draw against one of the favourites. Now...
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Marnus Labuschagne’s century puts Australia in charge v West Indies

Marnus Labuschagne led Australia’s domination of the West Indies on Wednesday with 154 not out as his side cruised to 293-2 at stumps on day one of the first test at Perth Stadium. Electing to bat first, the hosts started cautiously after three frenetic months of white-ball cricket but built momentum throughout the day in front of a modest crowd of 10,929. Steve Smith was on 59 unbeaten with Labuschagne at the close. “Whenever you finish a day nearing 300, only losing two wickets, (it means) the batters have got in,” Labuschagne said. “If you’re patient and you’ve got a good process, you can score big runs.” Marnus Labuschagne scored this second Test century in just three Perth innings in the perfect start to his Australian Test summer #AUSvWI | @LouisDBCameron https://t.co/myPRdxUkd1 ...
Sports

That awkward moment when the Prince of Wales says he’s backing England.

It seemed so nice when Prince William, the heir to the British throne, met with England’s national team to express his support for their World Cup campaign before they left for Qatar. A video released by England’s Football Association (president: Prince William) showed him doling out shirts to the players and declaring that “we’re all rooting for you.” Who the “we” is in that sentence became a matter of some controversy. As many residents of Wales speedily pointed out, Prince William is the Prince of Wales — and Wales was also competing in the tournament. In fact, the team is playing England today, the first time the two nations have ever met in a World Cup. (Wales hasn’t been to the World Cup since 1958.) ⚽️ @Cymru, be very proud. First World Cup since '58. This tournament you’ve pla...
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Cristiano Ronaldo’s reaction to Fernandes being credited with goal for Portugal vs Uruguay goes viral

Cristiano Ronaldo seemingly thought he had found the back of the net once again at the FIFA World Cup 2022 match when Portugal faced Uruguay on Monday. However, his moment of elation turned to surprise when teammate Bruno Fernandes was eventually credited with the goal thereby helping Portugal register a 2-0 win. It was Fernandes who curled in a cross from the left and the ball barely went over the head of the leaping Ronaldo and went into the net in the 54th minute to give Portugal a 1-0 lead. A grinning Ronaldo threw his arms in the air, suggesting he got the final touch and was embracing Fernandes as multiple close-up replays were being shown on the big screens in Lusail Stadium. But when Fernandes’ name flashed as the goalscorer, 37-year-old Ronaldo jokingly threw his arms up in the...
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‘Whoever leaked this, it’s his last day in the national team’: Courtois slams reports of fight between Eden Hazard, Kevin de Bruyne

Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has categorically denied rumours of a rift in his team’s camp following their 2-0 defeat against Morocco in the group stage match of the FIFA World Cup 2022. “There are no problems in the team, it’s just an external attempt to create internal problems. Of course, after a defeat, nobody is happy, but it brings us even closer because we know that we will have to give everything on the lawn on Thursday,” Courtois was quoted as saying by Walfoot in the press conference on Tuesday. “I was the first furious after the match, you saw the images (smile). But the problem is that there are too many lies around the group, in the press, on social networks, and everything the world takes for granted,” he asserts. “As a group, we can’t let this negativism affect us....
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Yuvraj Singh’s name crossed my mind after fifth six: Ruturaj Gaikwad

Ruturaj Gaikwad was the talk of town after his astonishing seven sixes in a 43-run over during a Vijay Hazare Trophy quarterfinal. But the only name that crossed the 25-year-old batter’s mind even before he had pulled off the unthinkable feat was that of Yuvraj Singh, the former star India all-rounder most remembered for his six sixes in an over against England’s Stuart Broad in the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007. Playing for Maharashtra, Gaikwad on Monday did one better when he smashed Uttar Pradesh left-arm spinner, Shiva Singh, for seven maximums in an over to create a List A world record. He got an extra delivery because of a no-ball. “To be honest, after the fifth six the only one person that crossed my mind was Yuvraj Singh. I had seen him hit six sixes in an over back then when ...