Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Sports UPDATE

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Durand Cup: Sikkim, Mohammedan win

New Delhi: A spirited peformance from Sikkim United and Mohammedan Sporting helped them register victories in their respective quarterfinal league round matches of the 126th Durand Cup Football tournament, here on Thursday. Riding on two goals from S Adelaja, Sikkim United beat Assam Regiment Centre 3-1 after coming from behind in the first encounter at the Ambedkar Stadium. In the next game, Mohammedan Sporting too came out from an early set back to trounce Army Green 4-2. S Adelaja (40th and 59th) and MD Lepcha (89th) scored for the Sikkim team after TS Workham Anal (19th) gave the Assam side the lead. Playing in the Durand Cup for the first time since 2006, star-studded Mohammedan rode on twin strikes from Tolgay Ozbey (27th and 36th) and a goal each from Collin Abranches (61st) and Penn Irechukww (90th). For Army Green, Sanaton Singh (5th) and Subrata Sarkar (52nd) found the net. The winners of the group qualify for the semifinals. (PTI)

Jayaram fails in China Masters

Changzhou (China): After a splendid performance at the inaugural Indian Badminton League, Indian shuttler Ajay Jayaram suffered a shock defeat against lower-ranked Chinese Yuekun Chen in the opening round of the China Masters here on Thursday. The world number 24, who had beaten the likes of world number 13 Wing ki Wong in Guangzhou, before defeating world no 5 Tien Minh Nguyen twice and world number 9 Jan o Jorgensen in the IBL, could not recreate the magic here. The Mumbai-based shuttler, who had played for champions Hyderabad Hotshots, lost 14-21, 21-23 to world number 30 Chen in a 36-minute men’s singles match here. Jayaram will next play in the Japan Open. (PTI)

Recover money spent on over-aged athletes: Ministry tells SAI

New Delhi: A livid Sports Ministry asked the Sports Authority of India to recover the money spent on the athletes’ airfare from the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) for the embarrassment caused to the country after 17 over-aged sportspersons were barred from the Nanjing Asian Youth Games. The Ministry acted swiftly on the report submitted by the SAI Director General Jiji Thomson, who has squarely blamed the AFI for the shocking incident. “We have told SAI that the amount must be recovered from the AFI. If they fail to return us the amount, we will not grant them any further advances in future,” Sports Secretary PK Deb said. The government had spent around Rs 10 lakh for the airfare of the athletes who returned home from China after being declared disqualified to take part in the competition. Asked whether any action has been proposed by SAI against the AFI, Deb replied in negative. “We have not decided to take any action against the AFI or ban any athlete,” he informed. Thomson had submitted the report to the Sports Secretary on September 9 after he was asked by the ministry to enquire into the issue of 17 track and field athletes being disqualified from the second Youth Asian Games. “The incident came as a huge embarrassment to the country. We will recover the cost from the AFI,” said Thomson. (PTI)

Late strikes give Pak hope in Zim

Harare: Three late wickets gave Pakistan renewed hope after Zimbabwe played themselves into a strong position on the third day of the second Test here on Thursday. A five-wicket haul by Brian Vitori and a century stand between Tino Mawoyo and Hamilton Masakadza put Zimbabwe on top before both partners and nightwatchman Tinashe Panyangara fell in the last three overs of the day. Zimbabwe were 121 for four at the close, an overall lead of 185 on a wearing pitch which has made stroke play difficult for batsmen of both sides. Left-arm fast bowler Vitori took five for 61 as Pakistan collapsed to 230 all out, losing their last six wickets for 19 runs and giving Zimbabwe a first innings lead of 64. Mawoyo and Masakadza added 104 for the second wicket with some of the most impressive batting of the match. Mawoyo made 58 off 165 balls before he was trapped leg before wicket by left-arm spinner Abdur Rehman shortly before the close. Masakadza followed up his first innings of 75 with 44 before he fell leg before to left-arm fast bowler Rahat Ali. (AFP)

Chiragh tied 3rd after Taipei first rd

Taipei: Chiragh Kumar, coming off a long off-season following struggles with injuries and form, opened the Yeangder Tournament Players Championships with a fine four-under 68 that gave him a share of third place at the end of the first round here on Thursday. Chiragh closed the round with a satisfying eagle on the 18th after three birdies and a bogey on the front-nine. Rahil Gangjee (70) was tied 10th, while the rest of the Indians had modest to disappointing rounds. Anirban Lahiri carded an even par 72 to be tied 29th, while defending champion Gaganjeet Bhullar and Abhinav Lohan shot one-over 73 each to be tied 46th. Thailand’s Thitiphun Chuayprakong birdied the last two holes for a six-under 66 to take a one-shot lead in the opening round. (PTI)

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