Sojourn to odyssey

Sports News in Brief

  Sports News in Brief: July 2010

Senior National Championship
World Youth champion Vikas Krishan stole the show with his maiden gold medal and the ‘Best Boxer’ trophy, but the Railways Sports Promotion Board clinched the overall title for the fourth consecutive year in the 57th Senior Men’s National Boxing Championships, held in New Delhi. The RSPB swept the overall tally with four gold, two silver and three bronze medals.

Haryana finished a distant second with two gold and three bronze medals. The Services Sports Control Board (SSCB) was third in the overall list with two gold, two silver and an equal number of bronze medals.

SSCB’s Manpreet Singh (91kg), the defending champion who signed off with a bronze, was adjudged the ‘Best Loser’ of the event.

Sri Lanka-India Test Series
Sri Lanka defeated India by ten wickets in the first Test to take lead in the three-Test series. This Test will be known in cricket history as one in which Sri Lankan off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan became the first bowler in the world to take 800 wickets. This Test was also the last Test match of Murali’s career.

The second Test meandered to a tame, high-scoring draw with a staggering 1,478 runs getting scored over five days. India scored 707 all out in the first innings, its second highest total ever. Suresh Raina became the 12th Indian to score a Test century on debut.

Pakistan-Australia Test Series
Australia completed a record 13th consecutive victory win over Pakistan when they beat them by 150 runs in the first Test at Lords.

Pakistan beat Australia in a Test for the first time since 1995 after winning by three wickets in the second Test, played at Leeds, to level the two-match series 1-1. The series was played in England as Pakistan is still not considered safe place for visiting teams.

England-Bangladesh One-Day series
England defeated Bangladesh by 144 runs in the third match, played at Birmingham, to clinch the series 2-1.

Muralitharan becomes first bowler to take 800 wickets
On July 22, 2010, Sri Lankan off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan became the first bowler to take 800 Test wickets, reaching the milestone in the last Test of his illustrious cricket career. The 38-year-old spin wizard got Indian tail-ender Pragyan Ojha caught at slip by Mahela Jayawardene to reach the magical figure, which puts him several pedestals above his contemporaries.

World Cup, 2010
Spain, the European champions, defeated third-time finalists the Netherlands 1–0 after extra time, with Andrés Iniesta's goal in the 116th minute giving Spain their first world title, the first time that a European nation has won the tournament outside its home continent. Host nation South Africa, 2006 world champions Italy and 2006 runners-up France were eliminated in the first round of the tournament.

In the semi-finals, Spain defeated Germany by 1-0 while Netherlands had defeated Uruguay.

Germany defeated Uruguay 3–2 to secure third place. Germany holds the record for most third place finishes in the World Cup (4), while Uruguay holds the record for most fourth place finishes (3).

The 2010 FIFA World Cup was the 19th FIFA World Cup. It took place in South Africa from June 11 to July 11, 2010. In 2004, the international football federation, FIFA, had selected South Africa to become the first African nation to host the tournament.

The matches were played in ten stadiums in nine host cities around the country, with the final played at the Soccer City stadium in South Africa’s largest city, Johannesburg. Thirty-two teams were selected for participation via a worldwide qualification tournament that began in August 2007.

Golden Ball:  Diego Forlán (Uruguay)
Golden Boot:  Thomas Müller (Germany)
Golden Glove:  Iker Casillas (Spain)
Best Young Player:  Thomas Müller (Germany)
FIFA Fair Play Trophy:  Spain

The official mascot for the 2010 World Cup was Zakumi, an anthropomorphised leopard with green hair, presented on 22 September 2008. His name came from “ZA” (the international abbreviation for South Africa) and the term kumi, which means “ten” in various African languages. The mascot's colours reflected those of the host nation's playing strip–yellow and green.

The official song of the 2010 World Cup, "Waka Waka", was performed by the Colombian singer Shakira and the band Freshlyground from South Africa. The song was sung in both English and Spanish. The song is based on a traditional African soldiers’ song, Zangalewa. Shakira and Freshlyground performed the song at the opening ceremony and at the closing ceremony.

Asian Champions Trophy (Women)
Korea beat Japan 2-1 to win the inaugural Asian Women's Hockey Championship, held  at Busan South Korea.

The first Asian Women Champions Trophy drew the four highest-ranking teams in the region—South Korea, China, Japan and India—which will also compete for the gold medal in the Asian Games to be held in Guangzhou, China, in November 2010.

India beat higher-ranked China 2-1 to win the bronze medal.

Rangaswamy Cup, 63rd
Mumbai overcame Haryana 3-2 to regain the senior national men’s hockey championship. The tournament was held in Bhopal.

Wimbledon Championship, 2010
The 124th Championships, a Royal tournament thanks to the first visit to the All England Club by Her Majesty the Queen for 33 years, was also a record-breaking occasion in many ways, most notably in that unforgettable first round men's singles between John Isner of the United States and France's Nicolas Mahut, which smashed every existing record in the sport.

The Isner-Mahut first round marathon, which stretched over three days, lasted 11 hours five minutes and totalled 183 games before Isner staggered away the winner 6-4, 3-6, 6-7, 7-6, 70-68. The final set alone lasted just over eight hours. Both men shattered the record for aces in one match, previously held by Ivo Karlovic at 78. Isner delivered 112 and Mahut also cracked the century with 103. An exhausted Isner crashed out to Thiemo De Bakker of Holland in the next round, collecting just five games.

In the men’s singles final Rafael Nadal beat Tomas Berdych 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 to win the title. This was the second Wimbledon title for the Spaniard. Berdych became the first Czech since Ivan Lendl in 1987 to reach the Wimbledon final.

The women’s singles title was won by defending champion Serena Williams who beat Russia’s Vera Zvonareva 6-3, 6-2. The victory took her to 13 Grand Slam singles titles, past Billie Jean King, and sixth in the all-time list.

In the doubles, the men's title went to an unseeded pair, Austria's Jurgen Melzer and Germany's Philipp Petzschner, playing only their seventh tournament as a team. The women's doubles was won by an American-Kazakh combination, Vania King and Yaroslava Shvedova. Also unseeded, they overcame the Russians, Elena Vesnina and Zvonareva, 7-6, 6-2. The mixed double's championship fell to a seeded combination, Leander Paes and Cara Black, the second seeds, who beat Wesley Moodie of South Africa and Lisa Raymond (United States) 6-4. 7-6.


 Sports News in Brief: June 2010

Yonex-Sunrise India Open Grand Prix
Saina Nehwal of India beat Malaysia’s Mew Choo Wong to win the title. This was her second international title win at home. She had won the Lucknow Grand Prix in 2009.

Indonesia Open
Saina Nehwal notched up an incredible hat-trick of titles by successfully defending her Indonesian Open Super Series title with s hard-fought win over Japan’s Sayaka Sato. She had earlier won the Indian Open Grand Prix and the Singapore Open Super Series.

Singapore Open
Indian ace Saina Nehwal clinched the second Super Series title of her career by winning the Singapore Open with a straight-game triumph over Chinese Taipie’s Tzu Ying Tai.

Asia Cup
India defeated Sri Lanka by 81 runs to win the Asia Cup. India had set the Lankans a stiff target of 299 runs. Dinesh Karthik was declared man of the match.

West Indies-South Africa One Day Series
South Africa completed a 5-0 white-wash of the series with a thrilling one wicket win in the final match. Earlier, the South Africans had also won the Twenty20 two-match series.

England-Australia One Day series
England won the five-match series 3-0. This followed 2009’s Ashes triumph and 2010’s Twenty20 World Cup final win over their oldest rivals.

ISSF Shotgun World Cup
Double-trap marksman Ronjan Sodhi clinched the gold in the tournament held at Lonato, Italy.

French Open, 2010
Men’s Singles title: Rafael Nadal won the title by defeating Robin Soderling. This was his fifth French Open win.

Women’s Singles title: Francesca Schiavone became the first Italian woman to win a Grand Slam singles title when she defeated Australian Samantha Stosur to win the women’s singles title.

Men’s Doubles title: Canada’s Daniel Nestor and Serbia’s Nenad Zimonjic won by beating defending champions Leander Paes of India and Lukas Dlouhy of Czech Republic.

Women’s Doubles title: Serena and Venus Williams of USA. Serena Williams won her second French Open Women's Doubles title, and the twelfth title in that discipline, which this was the fourth win in a row in the women's doubles in the Slams. Venus Williams won her second French Open Women's Doubles title, and the twelfth title in that discipline, which this was the fourth win in a row in the women's doubles in the Slams.

Mixed Doubles: Katarina Srebotnik and Nenad Zimonji? were the winners. Srebotnik won her third French Open Mixed Doubles title, and the fourth Slam title in that discipline. Zimonji? won his second French Open Mixed Doubles title, and the fourth Slam title in that discipline.

May 2010

Asian Women’s Championship
The Asian Women's Championships were held in Astana, Kazakhistan, in May 2010. Kazakhastan topped the medals tally with eight gold medals. China won the most medals in total—10, followed Korea and India amassing eight medals each.

World Title, 2010
Viswanathan Anand held his nerve and focus better than his opponent, Veselin Topalov, to win the 12th and final game to retain his World Championships title.

The 40-year-old Indian beat the local man from Bulgaria in the closing game with black pieces, to emerge a 6.5-5.5 winner and seal his place as a dominant player of his era.

Anand first won the world title in 2000 and held it till 2002 when the chess world was still split. He became the undisputed World champion in 2007 and then retained the title in 2008 when he beat Vladimir Kramnik.

Commonwealth Championship
Grandmaster R.R. Laxman clinched his career best win and bagged the gold after beating GM Pablo Lafuente of Argentina at the Parsvnath Commonwealth Chess Championship.

In the open category, Grandmaster Maletin Pavel of Russia signed peace with International Master Lalith Babu on the top board to win the title. Both Pavel and Laxman had nine points after 11 rounds, but the former had the better tie-break record on Bucholz count. The Russian was not in contention in the Commonwealth category.

In the women’s category, D. Harika outwitted IM Tania Sachdev on account of superior tie-break.

T20 World Cup, 2010
Chasing a challenging target of 148 runs, England defeated Australia by seven wickets to win the T20 World Cup. The tournament was held in West Indies.

Australia’s women held their nerves in a low-scoring final as they beat New Zealand by three runs to lift the Women’s T20 World cup title.

West Indies-South Africa One-Day series
South Africa defeated West Indies by 67 runs in the third match to win the series. They went on to win the fourth match also. South Africa beat West Indies by seven wickets.

England-Bangladesh Test series
England beat Bangladesh by five wickets in the first Test of the series, played at Lords, to be one-up in the two-Test series.

Premier League
Chelsea has won the title by a single point. They have swept back the trophy after four years.

Champions League, 2010
A goal in each half by Argentina striker Diego Militi helped Inter Milan overcome Bayern Munich 2-0 in the Champions League final.

Sultan Azlan Shah Cup, 19th
India and South Korea were named joint champions after the final match was abandoned following heavy rains in Malaysia. For defending champions India it was their fifth win, matching Australia, while for Asian champions South Korea this was their second title win; they had last won the cup in 1996.

World Team Championship
Chinese fans were left in shock after their women paddlers failed to win the gold medal at the World Team Table Tennis Championships for the first time since 1991.

The Chinese trio of Ding Ning, Liu Shiwen and Guo Yan fell to their Singaporean counterparts 3-1 in the final in Moscow as Singapore claimed their first title in the event.

Sushil, Narshing win gold in Asian Wrestling
Olympic bronze medallist Sushil Kumar lived up to his reputation as he bagged a gold in men's 66kg freestyle in the Senior Asian Wrestling Championships held at New Delhi. Narshing Yadav won a gold in the 74kg freestyle category.

Sports News in Brief: April 2010

Asian Championship, 2010
Men’s Singles: Lin Dan (China).
Women’s Singles: Q-Li Xuerui (China)
Men’s Doubles: Gun Woo Cho and Yeon Seong Yoo (Korea).
Women’s Doubles: Pan Pan and Quing Tian (China)
Mixed Doubles: Peng Soon Chan and Liu Ying Goh (Malaysia)

The Championship was held in New Delhi.

Deodhar Trophy
North Zone beat West Zone by 49 runs to win the Deodhar Trophy cricket tournament. The final was played at Vadodara.

Indian Premier League-3
Chennai Super Kings beat Mumbai Indian by 22 runs to win the third edition of the tournament. Electing to bat first, Chennai posted 168 for 5 and then restricted Mumbai to 146 for 9 to win their maiden title. Suresh Raina was declared the man of the match.

Royal Challengers Bangalore routed Deccan Chargers by nine wickets in the third and fourth place play-off match. With this win Royal Challangers qualified for the Champions League Twenty20 tournament.

Sachin Tendulkar won the DLF Golden Player award and the Orange cap for hitting the maximum runs in the tournament. Pragyan Ojha won the Purple cap for taking maximum wickets in the tournament. The Kingfisher Fair-play award was won by Chennai Super Kings.

World Cup Kabbadi Punjab Championship, 2010
India outclassed Pakistan 58-24 to win the title. The championship was held in Ludhiana, Punjab.

Narang shoots World Cup bronze
Ace Indian shooter Gagan Narang won a bronze in 10 meter air rifle event at the World Cup in Beijing. Russian Denis Sokolav won the gold.



Sports News in Brief: March 2010

Asian Grand Prix
Recurve Men: India’s Rahul Banerjee won the gold. The team gold medal was also won by India.
Recurve Women: India’s Deepika Kumari won the gold. The teasm event was also won by India.
Compound Men: India’s Hansdah won the gold. The host nation Thailand won the gold medal in the team competition. India took the bronze.
Compound Women: Ngeain Aung of Myanmar won the gold. India took the team gold medal.
Mixed Teams: India won the gold medal in the recurve category. In compound, Myanmar won the gold over India, and the bronze went to Vietnam.

Commonwealth Championship, 2010
India won six gold medals, which till date is the biggest haul in the Championships, as also the tournament, held at New Delhi. India bettered their record of four gold, two silver and three bronze medals they had achieved in Scotland in 2005.

Vijender Singh, the Olympic Games bronze-medallist, came out trumps, clinching his maiden gold in the Commonwealth Boxing Championships.

Asian bronze-medallist Paramjeet Samota (+91), Asian champion Suranjoy Singh (52kg), World Cup bronze-medallist Dinesh Kumar (81kg), Jai Bhagwan (60kg) and Amandeep Singh (49kg) were the other gold-medallists.

Deodhar Trophy
North Zone beat West Zone by 49 runs to win the Deodhar Trophy cricket tournament. The final was played at Vadodara.

Bangladesh-England Test series

England crushed Bangladesh by nine wickets in the second and final Test to sweep the series.

India finish second in ICC ODI rankings
Indian cricket team finished the season as number two ranked, behind Australia, in One-Day cricket rankings of ICC.

Kapil inducted in ICC Hall of Fame
Legendary all-rounder Kapil Dev, who led India to their only ODI World Cup triumph in 1983, has been inducted into the International Cricket Council’s Hall of Fame. A commemorative cap was presented to Kapil by ICC President David Morgan, in front of fellow Hall of Famer Clive Lloyd, as well as an audience of ICC officials and other invited guests at the governing body’s headquarters in Dubai. The Hall of Fame, run in association with the Federation of International Cricketers' Associations (FICA), recognises some of the legends of the game.

World Cup, 2010
Australia defeated Germany 2-1 to deny Germany a historic hat-trick of titles. Germany had won the title in 2002 and 2006. The Netherlands came back strongly from a 1-3 first half deficit to prevail over England 4-3 and win the bronze medal. India could manage eight spot only.

Guus Vogls of The Netherlands was declared the player of the tournament.

National Championship, 29th
Punjab lifted the men’s title of the 29th National Netball championship by defeating Delhi. Chattisgarh defeated Andhra Pradesh to with the bronze medal. In the women’s section Delhi edged Kerala for the top honours. Chattisgarh eves won the bronze medal.

ISSF World Cup
World champion marksman Manavjit Singh Sandhu lived up to his top billing and clinched the trap gold in the ISSF World Cup at Acapulco, Mexico. Another Indian, Anirudh Singh also impressed by entering his first ever World Cup final with a score of 122.

In the women’s trap event, none of the three Indian shooters could make it to the final round. Shagun Chowdhary finished 13th, Shreyasi Singh ended 16th and Seema Tomar 17th. Chinese shooter Yang Huan claimed the gold.



Sports News in Brief: February 2010

Vijender wins silver in Champion of Champions tournament
Olympic hero Vijender Singh broke the bronze jinx and fetched one of India’s two silver medals at the two-day Champion of Champions invitational boxing tournament in Guangzhou, China. The 24-year-old Olympic and World Championship bronze medallist lost 0-6 to China's Zhang Jin Ting in the in the middle weight (75kg) category final.

The other silver medal for India came through Olympian Dinesh Kumar, who settled for silver in 81kg after losing 2-10 to Chinese Meng Fan Long.

Cricket can now bid for 2020 Olympics
Cricket’s push to be a part of the Olympic Games received a major boost with International Olympic Council (IOC) granting recognition to International Cricket Council (ICC) on February 12, 2010. This could be seen as a first step towards cricket becoming Olympic sports. Its Twenty20 version can now bid to join the 2020 Olympic Games though ICC has not made it clear which format it will push for.

Cricket was granted the status of a recognised Olympic sport in 2007, for sports not in the Olympic programme but which conform to certain criteria, pending a decision for a permanent slot in the Games.

Cricket was part of the 1900 Olympics in Paris and has not appeared since then. The game was part of the 1998 Kuala Lumpur Commonwealth Games and its Twenty20 version is set to feature at Asian Games in Guangzhou, China.

Sachin becomes first batsman to hit a double hundred in an ODI
Sachin Tendulkar rewrote the record books on February 24, 2010, hammering the first double century in the history of one-day cricket to add another feather to his well-adorned cap. The capacity crowd at the Captain Roop Singh Stadium, Gwalior witnessed history as Tendulkar, statistically the greatest batsman the game has ever seen, pushed South African bowler Charl Langeveldt’s delivery through the off-side and ran a single to achieve a feat which no other cricketer has achieved.

One Day International cricket, since its 1971 inception, had to wait nearly four decades to see a batsman score 200. The previous best mark was shared by Zimbabwean Charles Coventry (194 not out) and Pakistan’s Saeed Anwar (194).

Top 10 highest individual knocks in the history of one day cricket are:
200*: Sachin Tendulkar (Ind) vs South Africa in Gwalior on February 24, 2010.
194*: Charles Coventry (Zim) vs Bangladesh in Bulawayo on August 16, 2009.
194: Saeed Anwar (Pak) vs India in Chennai on May 21, 1997.
189*: Viv Richards (WI) vs England in Manchester on May 31, 1984.
189: Sanath Jayasuriya (SL) vs India in Sharjah on October 29, 2000.
188*: Gary Kirsten (SA) vs United Arab Emirates at Rawalpindi on February 16, 1996.
186*: Sachin Tendulkar (Ind) vs New Zealand in Hyderabad on November 8, 1999.
183*: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Ind) vs Sri Lanka in Jaipur on October 31, 2005.
183: Sourav Ganguly (Ind) vs Sri Lanka at Taunton on May 26, 1999.
181*: Matthew Hayden (Aus) vs New Zealand in Hamilton on February 20, 2007.
181: Viv Richards (WI) vs Sri Lanka in Karachi on October 13, 1987.

India-South Africa Test Series
India crashed to a humiliating innings and six runs defeat in the first Test played in Nagpur. This was the first Test defeat under Mahinder Singh Dhoni’s captaincy.

India levelled the two-Test series after winning the second Test at Eden Gardens, Kolkata by an innings and 58 runs. With this win India managed to retain the number one Test team title it received when it first topped the ratings in December 2009, as also pocketed a cheque for Rs 78.75 lakh.

India-South Africa One-day series
India eked out one-run victory in the first match played at Jaipur. India, batting first, had set a target of 299 runs. South Africa was bowled out by India for 297. The second match at Gwalior by 153 runs. The highlight of the match was Sachin Tendulkar becoming the first batsman in the world to hit a double century in One-day format.

India lost the third and last match at Ahmedabad by 90 runs thus depriving itself a chance to register their first ever clean sweep against South Africa. India won the series 2-1. Sachin Tendulkar was declared the man-of-the-series.

Australia-West Indies One-day series
Australia defeated West Indies by 113 runs in the first match played at Melbourne.

South Asian Games, 2010
The 11th edition of South Asian Games (SAG) opened at the Bangabandhu National Stadium, Dhaka, on January 29, 2010. The aquatic show was the main attraction of the opening ceremony, in which a concert hosted by Pt. Ravi Shankar and Beatles star George Harrison for Bangladesh’s Independence day and the March 7 address of Sheikh Mujibur Rehman were displayed on a water screen.

This was the third time that the Bangladeshi capital hosted the Games, thus becoming the first city to hold the games three times.

Athletes from eight countries— Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka—competed in 23 different sports. India continued its dominance with 175 medals, including 90 gold medals. Pakistan narrowly beat the host to occupy the second spot with 19 golds, while the host Bangladesh capture 18 golds, including the most popular and prestigious football and cricket titles. Sri Lanka’s Shehan Abeypitiya became the fastest man while Pakistan’s Naseem Hamid was crowned the fastest woman of the region.

The logo of the Games was 'Kutumb', a flying doel, known in English as the Oriental Magpie Robin. It is the National Bird of Bangladesh. The mascot also featured a Magpie Robin.

Delhi will host the next South Asian Games. India was picked to host the regional sporting event after Bhutan, whose turn it was to host the next SAG, expressed its inability to stage the meet. India has hosted the South Asian Games twice thus far—in 1987 (Kolkata) and in 1995 (Chennai).

Winter Olympics, 2010
The 2010 Winter Olympics, officially the 21st Winter Olympics, were a major international multi-sport event held on February 12–28, 2010, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Approximately 2,600 athletes from 82 nations participated in 86 events in fifteen disciplines. Cayman Islands, Colombia, Ghana, Montenegro, Pakistan, Peru and Serbia made their winter Olympic debuts. Also Jamaica, Mexico and Morocco returned to the Games after missing the Turin Games.

The 2010 Winter Olympics were the third Olympics hosted by Canada, and the first by the province of British Columbia. Previously, Canada hosted the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, Quebec and the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta.

Canada topped the medals tally with 14 gold, 7 silver and 5 bronze medals. Germany was second, followed by USA.

The 2014 Winter Olympics will be held from February 7 to February 23, 2014 in Sochi, Krasnodar Krai, Russia.

Asian Tour International crown
Gaganjeet Bhullar scripted a sensational come-from-behind victory at Asian tour International crown, played at Bangkok. This was his second Asian tour title.

Commonwealth Championships, 2010
With 23 gold medals, 17 silver and 9 bronze medals, India topped the medals tally of the championships held in Delhi in February 2010. England was second in the medals tally, followed by Australia.

Sports News in Brief: January 2010

Senior National Badminton Championship, 74th
Chetan Anand claimed his fourth national title while Trupti Murgunde clinched her maiden one by winning the men’s and women’s singles finals. There was more joy for Chetan as his wife Jwala Gutta claimed a double by winning both the women’s and mixed doubles finals.

National Senior Championship, 60th
Indian Railways squeezed past hosts Punjab in men’s section to retain the men’s title. The women’s title was also won by Indian Railways who defeated Delhi in final to retain the title.

World Team championship
Russia won the gold with 24 points. India trounced Brazil in the ninth and last round to earn a bronze. The championship was held at Bursa, Turkey.

Under-19 World Cup
Australia have become the first team to win the under-19 world cup thrice. They defeated Pakistan by 25 runs to win the 2010 edition. The tournament was hosted by New Zealand.

Defending champions India finished sixth after being humbled by South Africa in the fifth place play-off match.

Ranji Trophy, 2010
Defending champions Mumbai pulled off a thrilling six-run win over Karnataka to clinch the coveted trophy for the 39th time.

Polly Umrigar Trophy
Delhi’s Vidya Jain Public School has claimed the trophy, symbol of supremacy in school cricket, defeating Presidency School, Bangalore by 54 runs.

Bangladesh-Sri Lanka-India triangular series
Sri Lanka defeated India by four wickets to win the triangular one-day series final. India had made 245 batting first and Sri Lanka surpassed the target with nine balls to spare.

Bangladesh-India Test series
India clinched the first Test with an emphatic 113-run victory to take 1-0 lead in the two-Test series.

South Africa-England Test series
England’s last pair of Graeme Swann and Graham Onions survived 17 balls to salvage a thrilling draw in the third Test against South Africa and keep their side 1-0 ahead in the series.

South Africa won the fourth and final Test at Johannesburg by an innings and 74 runs to level the series 1-1.

Australia-Pakistan Test series
Australia completed a remarkable Test victory over Pakistan, coming from 206 runs behind in the first innings to win the second Test at SCG by 36 runs. Needing 176 for its first victory in Australia in 14 years, Pakistan was bundled out for 139 runs.

Australia defeated Pakistan by 231 runs in the third Test, to win the three-Test series 3-0. This was a record-equalling 12th successive win against Pakistan. The sequence, which began in November 1999, equals the longest victory string against a team in Test history. Shane Watson was declared the Mon of the series.

Australia-Pakistan One Day series
Australia completed a series whitewash after defeating Pakistan by two wickets in the fifth and final match, amid allegations of ball tampering by Shahid Afridi. Afridi was subsequently banned for two T20 matches after pleading guilty to the charges.

Catching record of Dravid
Rahul Dravid is the first player ever to take 100 catches overseas for India. His overall tally of 193 catches in 139 Tests is a world record.

Federation Cup
West Bengal clinched the title by over-coming giant-killer Lajong FC of Shillong. The final was held at Guwahati, Assam.

Royal Trophy
Europe survived a dramatic fight-back to beat holders Asia and win the Royal trophy for the third time.

Australian Open, 2010
Serena Williams defeated Belgium’s Justine Henin to win the women’s singles title for the fifth time and her 12th Grand Slam title. With this win she drew level with Billie Jean King’s record of 12 Grand Slam wins.

Roger Federer beat Andy Murray to win his fourth Australian open men’s title, taking his own Grand Slam titles record to 16.

Leander Paes, with partner Cara Black, won the mixed doubles title. This was his 11th Grand Slam title, equalling Mahesh Bhupathi’s record of most wins by an Indian.

Mike and Bob Bryan won the men’s doubles title. The women’s doubles title was won by Serena and Venus Williams.

Chennai Open, 2010
Defending champion Marin Cilic of Croatia retained the title with a victory over Switzerland’s Stanislas Wawrinka.




Sports News in Brief: December 2009

WBC World Heavy-weight Title
Vitali Klitschko retained his title, winning a unanimous points decision against American challenger Kevin Johnson. The 38-year-old Ukrainian spent the entire fight on the offensive against previously unbeaten Johnson but could not find his customary knockout as his opponent opted for survival.

Suranjoy wins gold at President's Cup boxing
Asian champion Suranjoy Singh has become the first Indian boxer to clinch a gold medal at the inter-continental President's Cup. He out-punched Frenchman Nordine Oubaali 8-1 in the flyweight (51kg) final, in Baku, Azerbaijan. The 22-year-old Manipuri's triumph also fetched him US $3,000 at the prestigious season-ending event, where confederations from Asia, America, Africa, Europe and Oceania are pitted against each other.

Asian Team Championship, 2009
India-A men’s team overwhelmed Sri Lanka to annex the gold in the Tata Steel Asian Team Chess Championship which concluded at Kolkata. Vietnam took the silver while Iran had to be content with the bronze. In the women’s section, Vietnam crushed Nepal 4-0 to total 11 points and win the gold. 

National Premier Title
Baskaran Adhiban won the title with a round to spare in match against Abhijeet Gupta of PSPB. Adhiban also bagged his first Grandmaster norm in the process, something which he had narrowly missed thrice in the last two years.

Australia-West Indies Test series
Australia survived a tense final session to force a draw against the West Indies in an absorbing second Test at the Adelaide Oval.

Australia triumphed over a never-say-die West Indies inside four overs on the final day to win the third and final Test by 35 runs, and win the three-Test series 2-0. The West Indies came into the final day requiring 51 more runs for the unlikeliest of victories with Nos. 10 and 11 at the crease, but were eventually dismissed for 323.

South Africa-England Test series
Last man Graham Onions played out a tense final over from Makhaya Ntini as England escaped with a draw on the fifth and final day of the first Test against South Africa at Centurion.

Graeme Swann took five for 54 as England wrapped up victory by an innings and 98 runs on the fifth day of the second Test against South Africa at Kingsmead.

Australia-Pakistan Test Series
Chasing a mammoth total of 422 runs, Pakistan had a daunting task of surviving the penultimate day of the first Test match at Melbourne, and Australian off-spinner Nathan Hauritz made the task impossible with his maiden five wicket haul. Riding on Hauritz’s splendid spell (5-101) Australia defeated Pakistan by 171 runs. For Aussie captain, Ricky Ponting, the win was more special, as he has now captained the most Test victories (42) than any other player in the world, and played in more wins (93).

India-Sri Lanka Test Series
India became the number one team in Test rankings after they spanked Sri Lanka by an innings and 24 runs in the third and final cricket Test, played in Mumbai, to clinch the three-match series 2-0.

India-Sri Lanka ODI series
The first match at Rajkot saw a flurry of 4s and 6s resulting in both teams together scoring 825 runs in 100 overs, at a strike rate of 8.25 per over. In the end India just managed to scrape through with a three-run victory. Batting first, India amassed 414 runs in 5 overs. It was the highest ODI total ever recorded on Indian soil. Lankans finished at 411 for 8 in 50 overs, becoming first team ever to score 400-plus while chasing and still lose.

Tillakaratne Dilshan’s power-packed century provided the perfect platform for the visitors as Sri Lanka defeated India by three wickets in the second match at Nagpur to level the series 1-1.

Gautam Gambhir hit 150 not out and Virat Kohli his first ODI ton as India beat Sri Lanka by 7 wickets at Eden Gardens, Kolkata, taking an unbeatable 3-1 lead in the five-match series.

The fifth and final match had to be abandoned because of the ‘dangerous’ pitch at Feroze Shah Kotla ground in New Delhi. The controversy forced the DDCA to apologise and the BCCI to disband the pitch committee headed by Daljit Singh.

India-Sri Lanka T20 series
Yuvraj Singh belted a whirlwind 60 and bagged three wickets to fashion a six-wicket win for India in the second T20 International against Sri Lanka at Mohali. The win enabled India to level the two-match series. Sri Lanka had defeated India by 29-run loss in the first match in Nagpur.

India is ranked world number one
On December 6, 2009 millions of Indians were united in celebration as their team ascended to the top of the ICC Test rankings after defeating Sri Lanka in the third and final Test at Mumbai. Fittingly, the win that made it possible was marked by stand-out performances from the men who have played a crucial role in India’s ascent. Virender Sehwag has scored more runs than any other Indian batsman over the last 25 Tests—played over a two-year period starting November 2007. His rollicking 293—at a pace that left the bowlers ample time to finish the demolition job— proved pivotal as India fulfilled its tryst with the top slot.

Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan have been India’s highest wicket-takers during this period. Both picked up six wickets apiece for the match, with Zaheer coming up with a five-wicket haul to polish off the tail and take India to a comfortable win by an innings and 24 runs.

Sehwag breaks records
Virender Sehwag has become the first Indian to post two double centuries against Sri Lanka. He is also the first Indian batsman to rake-up 200 runs through boundaries (202 runs in 40 fours and seven sixes). Only John Edrich (238 runs in 1965), Mathew Hayden (218 runs in 2003) and Inzamam-ul-Haq (206 runs in 2002) have recorded more runs through boundaries than Sehwag. He has also become the first Indian batsman to share six double century stands for the first wicket in Tests.

FIFA World Player of Year
Argentine and Barcelona football star Lionel Messi has been named World Player of the Year, while Portuguese and Real Madrid icon Cristiano Ronaldo has secured the Puskas Goal of the Year gong.

SAFF title, 5th
India avenged their last edition title loss as they prevailed over Maldives 3-1 via penalty shoot-out in the SAFF Championships summit clash to claim their fifth crown. The championship was held in Dhaka, Bangladesh. After the match failed to produce any goal in the regulation and extra times, the match was decided in a penalty shoot-out.

Champions Challenge, 2009
New Zealand defeated Pakistan 4-2 to lift the title. Earlier, Pakistan had defeated India 6-3 in the semi-finals.

Champions Trophy, 2009
Australia clinched the ABN AMRO Hockey Champions Trophy title in stunning fashion beating Germany 5-3. Australia clinched the title for the second year in a row and had won the title nine times earlier. The championship was held in Melbourne.

Gagan shoots double gold in Asian event
Gagan Narang shot an individual gold and also helped India bag the team gold in the Asian Air Gun Championships in Doha. The team comprising Narang, P.T. Raghunath and Sanjeev Rajput won the gold with a score of 1782. The silver was won by China (1779) while Iran (1764) bagged the bronze.

In the junior men’s air rifle, Chain Singh won the bronze. In the youth category, Navdeep Singh Rathore shot 585 to qualify for the inaugural edition of the Youth Olympics in 2010.

Davis Cup, 2009
Spain won its fourth Davis Cup title when Fernando Verdasco and Feliciano Lopez took the doubles to give the team an unassailable 3-0 lead over the Czech Republic. Spain also becomes the first country since Sweden in 1998 to retain the Davis Cup, after triumphing in 2008 in Argentina.

Commonwealth Free-style Championship
Indian women wrestlers put up a good show by winning three gold, four silver and five bronze medals followed closely by Canada and Cameroon during the championship held at Jalandhar. Among Indian wrestlers Babita, Geeta and Alka Tomar won gold in the 51, 55 and 59 Kg free-style wrestling.

Indian men grapplers put their opponents on the mat and put up a splendid show by winning 14 medals. Hosts India won seven golds, three silver and four bronze in the free style competition and clinched the team championship trophy.



Sports News in Brief: November 2009

Asian Championship, 16th
Indian compound archers made history by clinching their first ever gold medal in the 16th Asian archery championship at Bali. India also bagged two silver medals in the men’s recurve and women’s compound sections, according to the Archery Association of India (AAI). The Indian trio of C. Srither, Ratan Singh and Isiah R. Sanam edged past Iran 231-230 in a nerve-wrecking contest to reign supreme in the compound section. The Indian men’s recurve team, comprising Rahul Banerjee, Jayanta Talukdar and Mangal Singh Champia lost to Korea 219-222 in the summit clash to settle for a silver medal. In the women’s compound team final India once again were beaten by Korea as the trio of Jhanu Hansdah, Namita Yadav and Manjudha Soy had to be content with a silver medal.

Airtel Delhi Half Marathon, 2009
Deriba Merga of Ethiopia retained his title, while Kenya’s Mary Keitany won the women’s event in a race joined by over 30,000 participants.

Deepchand Saharan bettered 2008’s third-place finish to win in the Indian men category. Saharan had won the inaugural Delhi Half Marathon in 2005. He shaved off 56 seconds from his 2008 performance to register his personal best at 1 hour 4 minutes.

The top honour in the Indian women’s section went to Sukanya Mall of Uttar Pradesh.

Asian Championship, 2009
China once again showed its supremacy in the continental athletics topping the medals tally (18 gold, 19 silver, 10 bronze) of 18th Asian Athletics Championships, held at Guangzhou, China. Japan (12 gold, 5 silver, 5 bronze) finished second.

India, who sent a 60-strong squad, ended the five-day competition at third with 12 medals (one gold, 4 silver, 7 bronze).

Anand wins rapid four-game series
World Champion Viswanathan Anand tamed former World Champion Anatoly Karpov of Russia in successive two encounters to win the rapid four-game chess series.

World junior girls (u-20) title
India’s Soumya Swaminathan won the title when she defeated Kubra Ozturk of Turkey in the 13th and last round at Puerto Madryn (Argentina). The 20-year-old Woman Grandmaster tallied 10 points in this under-20 tournament. D. Harika (girls) and Abhijit Gupta (open) had won the World junior titles on India’s Independence Day in Turkey in 2008.

India-Australia One-day series
Australia won the fourth match of the series at Mohali by 24 runs to level the series. Chasing a modest total of 250 runs in 50 overs, India got bundled out for 226.

Sachin Tendulkar scored a breathtaking 175 of 141 balls, but, chasing 351, India fell short by three runs in the fifth match played at Hyderabad. In the process Australia seized a 3-2 lead in the seven match series.

The sixth ODI at Guwahati was won by Australia by six wickets. The visitors thus took an unassailable 4-2 lead in the seven-match series.

The seventh and final one-dayer between India and Australia at Mumbai was abandoned without a ball being bowled due to heavy unseasonal rains in the wake of a cyclonic storm over the Arabian Sea. The wash-out of the day-night encounter meant that Australia clinched the series with a 4-2 margin.

Strapping Australian all-rounder Shane Watson was awarded the man of the series in the seven-match ODI rubber.

Bangladesh-Zimbabwe One-Day Series
Bangladesh took the fifth and final match by one wicket to win the series 4-1.

South Africa-Zimbabwe One-Day Series
South Africa defeated Zimbabwe by 45 runs in the first match. This was followed by a thumping 212-run thrashing of Zimbabwe in the second match.

South Africa-England Twenty20 series
Graeme Smith and Loots Bosman went on a six-hitting spree as South Africa gained a crushing 84-run win over England in the second and final T20 international. Smith and Bosman shared a world record opening partnership of 170 off 81 balls in a South African total of 241 for six, the second-highest in T20 internationals. England, who won the rain-affected first match by just one run, struggled to 157/8 in reply.

India-Sri Lanka Test series
Gautam Gambhir and Sachin Tendulkar hit opportune centuries as India came up with a spirited batting display to salvage a draw in the first cricket Test against Sri Lanka.

Opener Gautam Gambhir conjured up yet another marathon innings of 114 runs, before Sachin Tendulkar (100 not out) took the centre-stage to chase down yet another milestone of 30,000 international runs en route to his 43rd Test ton.

A dominant India took one-and-half sessions to complete the formalities and spank Sri Lanka by an innings and 144 runs in the second Test at Kanpur to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

This turned out to be India’s 100th Test victory in their 432nd outing. India became the sixth nation to win 100 Test matches, following Australia (332), England (310), West Indies (152), South Africa (120) and Pakistan (102).

This was also India’s biggest victory margin against the Lankans, in terms of innings. The previous mark was their thrashing of the islanders by an innings and 119 runs in the 1994 Lucknow Test.

India is now the sixth team to record 100 Test wins. It took 432 Tests to get there, the slowest among the 6 teams. The victories include 68 wins in 221 home Tests and 32 Tests in 211 ‘away’ matches.

Since 2000, India has won 39 out of 102 Tests. That includes 19 out of 56 Tests played abroad. Before 2000, India had won only 13 of 155 Tests played abroad. M.S. Dhoni has won 7 and drawn 3 of the 109 Tests in which he has led India so far.

New Zealand-Pakistan Test Series
Riding on comeback star and man-of-the-match Shane Bond’s brilliant match figures of eight for 153, New Zealand defeated Pakistan by 32 runs in the first Test at Dunedin.

Australia-West Indies Test Series
Australia humiliated West Indies by an innings and 65 runs, within three days, to canter to victory in the first Test in Brisbane. Interestingly, Australia have not been beaten at Gabba ground for 21 years now, while the Windies notched up their ninth straight Test defeat Down Under.

South Africa-England One-Day series
England beat South Africa by seven wickets in the fourth one-day international at St George’s in Port Elizabeth to lead the five-match series 2-1.

Tendulkar crosses 30,000 run mark
In yet another landmark in his illustrious 20-year-old career, Sachin Tendulkar became the first cricketer to cross 30,000 runs in international cricket during the first Test against Sri Lanka, played in Ahmadabad in November 2009. Tendulkar, who made his international debut in a Test against Pakistan on November 15, 1989 in Karachi, crossed the milestone when he reached 35 in India’s second innings.
Tendulkar ended his 160th Test in Ahmadabad sitting on 12877 runs, with 43 hundreds and 53 half centuries at an average of 54.79. From the 436 one-day internationals he has played so far, Tendulkar has scored 17178 runs with 45 hundreds and 91 fifties at an average of 44.50.

He scored 10 from the lone Twenty20 International he has played before voluntarily deciding not to be part of the Indian squad in the shortest format of the game.

Record sixth wicket partnership
Mahela Jayawardene’s epic 275 in the first Test between India and Sri Lanka, played at Ahmedabad, not only gave Sri Lanka a platform from where they could dictate terms in the Test, his sixth-wicket stand of 351 with wicketkeeper Prasanna Jayawardene broke one of cricket’s longest-standing records. Way back in 1936-37, Don Bradman and Jack Fingleton had put on 345 for the sixth wicket for Australia against England in Melbourne, a mark that lasted 72 years until Ahmedabad on November 11, 2009.

Asian Indoor Games, 2009
The 2009 Asian Indoor Games were held in Hanoi, Vietnam in October-November, 2009. The Games comprised of twenty sports, four demonstration sports, including the Shuttle Cock and Vovinam martial arts offered by the host country.

China topped the medals tally, followed by Vietnam and Kazakhstan. India ranked seventh.

The mascot of the Games was the Ho Chicken, a distinctly Vietnamese rare breed of chicken.

Asia Cup (Women), 7th
Indian team had to be satisfied with a silver medal after they went down 3-5 to China in an action-packed final at Bangkok.

26th Indian Oil Surjit Tournament
Bharat Petroleum Mumbai clinched the title by defeating Indian Oil Mumbai 3-2. The tournament was held in Jalandhar, Punjab.

Asian Championship, 2009
Asserting their supremacy, Chinese paddlers completed a clean sweep by clinching all the seven titles, including men and women singles, in the 19th Asian Table Tennis Championships held in Lucknow.

World number two Ma Long defeated compatriot Zhang Jike 4-2 to bag the men’s singles title, while Ding Ning won the women’s singles by snatching a 4-3 victory over Li Xiaoxia.



Sports News in Brief: October 2009

Delhi boy Sahaj is India’s youngest IM
Former under-10 world champion Sahaj Grover has become India’s youngest International Master, winning the final round game against the higher-rated Nicolas Clery to finish fifth in the International Open Chess meet, held in France. Sahaj played in a strong field comprising seven Grandmasters and eight International Masters.

Though just 2288 as per ELO ratings of September 2009, Sahaj gained the required points to scale his rating well past the 2400 mark. The youngster had made his maiden Grandmaster norm in

Champions Trophy
Australia were crowned the 2009 ICC Champions Trophy winner after Shane Watson’s unbeaten century guided the defending champions to a six-wicket victory over a depleted New Zealand in the low-scoring final match played at Centurion, South Africa.

Champions League
New South Wales Blues from Australia, already the most successful domestic outfit in cricketing history, added another feather in its cap by pulling off a 41-run victory over Trinidad and Tobago. The final was played at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad. The Blues clinically hemmed in the West Indians, and in forcing them to hit out of trouble, ensured they were bundled out for 118 chasing 160. The victory made the Blues richer by $2.3 million while T&T pocketed $1.5 million.

NKP Salve Challenger Trophy
Munaf Patel and Sudeep Tyagi wreaked havoc with seven scalps between them as India Red won the Trophy, steamrolling Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his India Blue teammates by seven wickets in an extremely lop-sided final played at Nagpur.

Irani Trophy, 2009
Rest of India clinched their fourth successive Irani Cup, defeating Mumbai on the basis of first innings lead, after the fifth and final day of the match was called off due to wet ground conditions.

ICC Awards
Cricketer of the Year: Mitchell Johnson (Australia).
Test Player of the Year: Gautam Gambhir (India).
One-Day Player of the Year: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (India).
Twenty20 International Performance of the Year: Tillekratne Dilshan (Sri Lanka).
Umpire of the Year: Aleem Dar (Pakistan).
Spirit of Team Award: New Zealand.
Emerging Player of Year: Peter Siddle (Australia).
Associate and Affiliate Player of Year Award: William Porterfield (Ireland).
Women Cricketer of Year: Claire Taylor (England).
The ICC World ODI Team of the Year is (in batting order): Virender Sehwag (Ind), Chris Gayle (WI), Kevin Pietersen (Eng), Tillakaratne Dilshan (SL), Yuvraj Singh (Ind), Martin Guptill (NZ), MS Dhoni (Ind, captain, wk), Andrew Flintoff (Eng), Nuwan Kulasekara (SL), Ajantha Mendis (SL), Umar Gul (Pak). 12th men: Thilan Thushara (SL).

The ICC World Test Team of the Year: M.S. Dhoni (Ind, captain, WK), Gautam Gambhir (Ind), Andrew Strauss (Eng), AB de Villiers (SA), Sachin Tendulkar (Ind), Thilan Samaraweera (SL), Michael Clarke (Aus), Shakib Al Hasan (Ban), Mitchell Johnson (Aus), Stuart Broad (Eng), Dale Steyn (SA), 12th man: Harbhajan Singh (Ind).

India-Australia One Day series
Praveen Kumar and Harbhajan Singh’s batting heroics took India agonisingly close to a sensational win before the hosts slumped to a four-run defeat against Australia in the first match, played at Vadodra. Chasing 292, India scored 288 for 8 in the allotted 50 overs.

Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni struck a breathtaking 124 as India put up an all-round display to crush Australia by 99 runs in the second one-dayer to level the seven-match series 1-1, at Nagpur. Dhoni smashed a 107-ball 124 to guide India to a record 354 for seven, the highest against Australia.

Yuvraj Singh and captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni dealt the Australian bowling attack with a mixture of caution and aggression to power India to a six-wicket victory to go 2-1 up in series at the Ferozeshah Kotla, New Delhi.

Commonwealth Games, 2010
The Queen's Baton Relay, one of the traditions of the Commonwealth Games, will travel 1,70,000 km and pass through 70 Commonwealth nations before reaching India for the Games starting on October 3, 2010.

It will take the Queen's Baton 240 days to complete the epic journey to all of the other 70 nations. On its 100-day tour in India, the baton will visit all the capital cities in India's 28 States and seven Union Territories and many other cities along the way, covering well over 20,000 km.

On arrival at the opening ceremony, the Baton will have travelled in excess of 190,000 km over a 340-day period. This will make the Queen's Baton Relay one of the longest relays in the history of the Commonwealth Games.

The Baton's run in India for the 2010 Delhi Games will be twice as long as the Manchester and Melbourne relays, which lasted for 50 days each.

Queen's Baton Relays have been the curtain raiser to every game since Cardiff, Wales, in 1958. The Queen's Baton for 2010 Delhi Games contains Queen Elizabeth II's 'message to the athletes.'

President Pratibha Patil joined Britain's Queen Elizabeth II to launch 2010 Commonwealth Games baton relay at a gala Indian ceremony in Buckingham Palace. The 51-year-old tradition took place on the last day of Patil's three-day State visit to Britain, with the Queen formally bidding farewell to Patil at the Palace's Grand Entrance.

The Queen’s Baton for the 2010 Commonwealth Games is a delicate mix of aesthetics and technology with an in-built location tracking system and a camera capable of sending images to the Games website.

Built with Aluminium and Gold, this piece of art has Queen Elizabeth’s message engraved on a miniature 18-carat gold leaf that is symbolic of the ancient Indian palm leaf ‘patras’, using laser technology. Designed by Michael Foley of Foley design, along with Titan Industries and Bharat Electronics, it has an embedded system to receive SMSes sent by enthusiasts from across the world. These SMSes can be viewed when baton is docked on its special stands or on the website of the Commonwealth Games.

Singapore Open Amateur Championship
Rashid Khan, India’s top-ranked amateur, walked away with the title. He shot a last round of two-under 70 to take the title ahead of overnight leader Thai Vasin Sripattranusorn and Singapore’s Jerome Ng.

Jeev becomes first Indian to play in World Match-play
Jeev Milkha Singh has added yet another feather to his well-adorned cap. The Indian golf pro has become the first Indian to tee up at the 16-man Volvo World Match-play Championships in Casares (Spain). The Championship was held in Spain for the first time in its history, moving from Wentworth Club to the magnificent 7,439-yard course at Finca Cortesin. The total prize money for the event was $ 3,250,000.

President’s Cup
Tiger Woods delivered the clinching point as the United States won the eighth Presidents Cup match play golf tournament.

Hero Honda Indian Open
C. Muniyappa’s dream became a reality when he triumphed in the $1.25million Hero Honda Indian Open after beating Lee Sung on the first extra hole. The result saw him lead from 97th position on the Order of Merit to sixth.


Canada-India series
India rounded off their impressive tour of Canada with a 3-2 victory over the home side in their final game to win the seven-match hockey Test series 6-0, at Tamanawis Park.

Raid de Himalaya
Army’s Amarinder Singh Brar won his maiden title in X-treme four-wheeler category while Ashish Saurabh Maudgil grabbed his fourth crown in two-wheeler event in the 11th edition of the Raid de Himalaya rally.

Army also won the Team Trophy for their stupendous performance in the six-leg Maruti Suzuki rally which covered more than 2000 kms and is touted as the longest and toughest motorsport event in the country.

In the adventure trial category, the team of Prasad and Pradeep won in the Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) category in a Mahindra Scorpio, while Dharampal Jangra and Hari won the car category. The all-women team of Suchi Thakur and Molona (of W+K racing team) were awarded the Coup De Damsel Trophy.

Asian Clay Shooting championship
World champion Manavjit Singh Sandhu shone at the 2009 Asian clay shooting championship. He bagged the gold medal in the trap event in Almaty, Kzakhstan. He shot 121/125 in the qualification round and in the finals he came up with a score of 19/25 to claim the top position.

Mansher Singh won the bronze in the event with a score of 113+21. The team consisting of Manavjit (121), Mansher (113) and Anwer Sultan (109) took the silver with a total score of 343/375. The team gold was won by Kuwait with a score of 346.
Indian shooters finished the event with four gold medals, two silver and a bronze. Three gold were won in individual category by Ronjon Sodhi (double trap), Sangram Dahiya (double trap junior) besides Manavjit.

Commonwealth Championships
Competing in the backdrop of a series of dope flunks, Indian weightlifters began their Commonwealth Senior and Junior Championship campaign in Penang, Malaysia, with a bang by winning six gold and four silver medals.

Out of the six gold, three were won by the senior lifters while the remaining were pocketed by the juniors.

Indians won both gold and silver in senior men's 56 kg and 62 kg. In 56 kg, V.S. Rao clinched the yellow metal while V. Vinoth Kumar came second.

In senior men's 62 kg, Rustam Sarang won gold while Omkar Otari pocketed the silver.

In senior women's 48 kg, Soniya Chanu won gold. Bangaru Usha bagged gold in junior women's 48 kg, while compatriot Deeksha Gaikwad won silver in the same event.

In junior men's 56 kg, Sukhen Dey, who created history by becoming the first Indian male lifter to win a medal at the global level by winning bronze in World Junior Championships in Romania, bagged the gold, while Swapnil Ghagare won the silver.

K. Ramesh Kumar finished first in junior men's 62 kg to complete the tally of six gold and four silver for Indians.



Sports News in Brief: September 2009

World Professional Crown
Pankaj Advani, the 24-year-old Bangalorean, scripted a brilliant 2030-1253 win over Mike Russell to win his maiden World Professional Billiards title at the Northern Snooker Centre in Leeds, UK. In a thrilling finale, he reduced the greatest billiards exponent of the modern era to a mere spectator in a five-hour clash.

Pankaj Advani is only the second Indian after Geet Sethi to win the World Professional Billiards title in its 139-year history. He has also won the IBSF World Snooker Championship in China and has the rare distinction of being both the World IBSF and professional champion.

He also won gold at 2006 Doha Asian Games (English Billiards singles).

Vijender becomes first Indian boxer to be ranked No. 1
Adding to his already overflowing list of firsts in Indian boxing, Haryana lad Vijender Singh has again created history by attaining the numero uno position in the world in the 75 kg category. Now, he has become the first Indian boxer to win a medal at the Olympics, the first to win a medal at the World Championships and also the first to take the top spot.

India briefly become number one
India became world number one in ODIs on September 11, 2009 after a six-wicket win over New Zealand. However, they could not hold on to the number one spot for long as they lost the next match against Sri Lanka. M.S. Dhoni’s men are only the third team to hold the top slot after Australia and South Africa since the ranking system began. Indian team needed to win the two matches against Sri Lanka in the tri-series to stay on top. But they could only win the final of the series and lost the league match.

England-Australia One Day series
A devastating spell of fast bowling from Brett Lee at Lord’s helped Australia to a seven wicket win and an unassailable 4-0 lead in the seven-match One-day series against England. It was the ninth time Lee had taken five wickets in a One-dayer.
Australia captain Ricky Ponting’s superb century paved the way for the world champions to beat England by four wickets in the fifth one-day international (ODI).
Tim Paine scored his maiden international century as Australia inflicted fresh one-day misery upon England with a crushing 111-run win at Trent Bridge. Victory in this fixture left world champions Australia 6-0 up in the 7-match series.

Sri Lanka-New Zealand-India Tri-series
India defeated Sri Lanka by 46 runs to win the tri-series. India’s win was backed by a century by Sachin Tendulkar who scored 138 runs off 133 balls. This was Sachin’s 44th century. The win was India’s first in a tournament final against Sri Lanka in eight attempts. The win was also India’s first since January 2008 in a series involving more than two teams.

BCCI Corporate Trophy
Air India Red defeated Air India Blue by 93 runs to clinch the trophy.

All India J.P. Atray Tournament
Reliance-1 overhauled a massive 303 run target set by defending champions Indian Oil Corporation team to win the Pearls Trophy. The tournament was held at Mohali, Punjab.

Castrol Cricket Awards, 2008
Indian opener Gautam Gamhir pipped Virender Sehwag to become the Cricketer of the year 2008. Gambhir, who scored over 1000 runs in Tests and ODI's in 2008, also won the best bastman of the year award while off-spinner Harbhajan Singh claimed the best bowler of the year honours, worth a trophy and Rs two lakh each.

Dashing opener Sehwag and Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni were declared the Test and One-Day cricketers.

All rounder Ravindra Jadeja was named the best young cricketer of the year.
Master blaster Sachin Tendulkar and another stalwart Rahul Dravid were given special performance awards for becoming the first batsman to cross 12,000 runs in Tests and becoming the leading catcher in the traditional format of the game, respectively.

Gundappa Rangnath Viswanath, former Indian captain and the first Indian to score a Test hundred against all Test-playing nations of his time was conferred the Castrol Lifetime Achievement Award. Vishwanath joins the legendary Capt. Vijay Hazare, Polly Umrigar, B.S. Chandrasekhar, Gavaskar, Kapil Dev and Prasanna who were the earlier recipients of the award. G.R. Viswanath represented India in 91 Tests from 1969 to 1983, and scored 6,080 runs, inclusive of fourteen centuries.

Durand Cup
Churchill Brothers defeated Mohun Bagan 1-0 in extra time to lift the cup.

DLF Masters Title
Gaganjit Bhullar won the title for his fifth consecutive victory on the domestic tour.

PGTI Players Championship
Amandeep Johl clinched the rain-hit championship at Chandigarh defeating Ashok Kumar in a play-off.

BMW Championship
Tiger Woods cruised to victory in the Championship, his sixth triumph of 2009, putting him back atop the US PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup rankings.

India returns to elite Davis Cup group after 11 years
India No. 1 Somdev Devvarman came back from two sets down to beat South Africa’s Rik De Voest in a match that lasted nearly 5 hours. The thrilling win gave India an unbeatable 3-1 lead over South Africa and ensured a return to the elite Davis Cup World Group for the first time in 11 years.

US Open, 2009
Kim Clisjsters of Belgium won the women’s singles title for the second time, defeating Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark, to complete one of the most stunning comeback in modern sports history. In doing so, she became the first mother to win a Grand Slam title since Australian Evonne Goolagong in 1980 and the first wildcard, man or woman, to win a US Open title in the history of the tournament.

Juan Martin del Porto ended Roger Federer’s run of dominance at the US Open to win the men’s singles title. This was his first Grand Slam title.

Leander Paes and his Czech partner Lukas Dlouhy won the men’s doubles title when they beat the third seeds Mahesh Bhupathi and his partner from the Bahamas Mark Knowles 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.

Serena Williams and Venus Williams beat Cara Black and Liezel Huber to win the women doubles title.

Carly Gullickson and Travis Parrott defeated Leander Paes and Cara Black to win the mixed-doubles title.

Ramesh wins World Championship Bronze ending 42-year-old wait
It takes guts to go for a high-risk three-point technical move in the final seconds of a medal bout at World Championship Wrestling. But in Ramesh Kumar’s case, the all-out attack strategy paid off big time. The wrestler from Haryana ended India’s 42-year wait for a medal in the men’s segment at the World Championships by winning bronze in the 74kg freestyle category in Herning, Denmark.
Vishambar Singh was the last Indian male wrestler to win a medal at the Worlds, with a freestyle silver in 1967. In 2006, Alka Tomar had won bronze in the women’s event. India also boasts of two Olympics bronze medal-winning wrestlers—Kasaba Jadhav in 1952 and Sushil Kumar in Beijing 2008.



Sports News in Brief: August 2009

World Athletics Championship, 2009
The 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics were held in Berlin, Germany from Auguast 15–23, 2009. The majority of events took place in the Olympiastadion, while the marathon and race-walking events started and finished at the Brandenburg Gate.

United States, with 10 gold, 6 silver and 6 bronze medals, topped the medals tally, followed by Jamaica, Kenya, Russia, Poland and Germany.

Sprint king Usain Bolt proved lightning does strike twice as he smashed his own 100m world record, exactly one year after setting the previous benchmark at the Beijing Olympics. Bolt took 33 strides down the track at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium and sliced the largest chunk off the world record since electronic timing was introduced. Bolt pushed himself and the result was a stunning time of 9.58 seconds in the men's 100-metre final: eleven-hundredths of a second better than his game-changing mark of 9.69 in Beijing.

His world record performance was all the more remarkable as the 22-year-old was involved in a car crash in Jamaica in April  2008 when his car overturned in a ditch off a highway. Bolt had a small operation on his left foot, but his lightning strides showed nothing to be wrong with his feet.

With Olympic and world championship gold medals now in his possession, Bolt said he was tempted to complete the set of major championship medals by running at the CWG in New Delhi in October, 2010.

Jamaica’s sprinting dominance continued in sizzling style when Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser clocked 10.73 seconds to win the women’s world 100 metres. Now, only Florence Griffith-Joyner and Marion Jones remain among those who have run faster than Fraser.

Usain Bolt also shattered his own 200 metres world record to win gold at the world championships in a breathtaking 19.19 seconds and secure his place as the greatest sprinter ever seen.

World Championship, 2009
Olympic champion Lin Dan has become the first badminton player to clinch a hat-trick of world titles, beating fellow Chinese Chen Jin in straight games to win the men's singles title of this mega event held at the Gachibowli stadium, Hyderabad. Lin had won the earlier World Championship in 2006 and 2007, apart from winning four All-England titles in 2004, 2006, 2007 and 2009.

In all-Chinese women’s singles final Lu Lan beat Xie Xingfang in straight sets to win the world title.

Danish mixed pair Thomas Laybourn and Kamilla Rytter Juhl thrashed the two times World Champions from Indonesia, Nova Widianto and Lilyana Natsir to win the mixed-doubles title.

The Chinese pair of Fu Haifeng and Cai Yun defeated Koreans Lee Young Dae and Jung Jae Sunge to win the men’s doubles title.

China’s Zhao Tingting and Zhang Yawen won the women’s doubles final against Cheng Shu and Zhao Yunlei, also of China.

Jwala-Diju create history
V. Diju overcame a back strain and Jwala Gutta battled a stiff left (playing) arm to create history by becoming the first Indian mixed doubles pair to win a Grand Prix Gold. The third-seeded Indians pulled off a stunning 24-22, 21-18 win over Indonesians Hendra Aprida Gunawan and Vita Marissa in the final of the Chinese Taipei Gold Grand Prix and walked home with $11,560 as prize money.

Vijender is World No. 2
Vijender Singh has been ranked second in the 75 kg category by the International Boxing Association. Akhil Kumar (57 kg) and Jitender (51 kg) are placed 9th and 13th in their respective categories. In the 48 kg category, Thokchom Nanao Singh is at fifth spot.

England-Australia Test series (The Ashes)
England regained the Ashes with a sweeping 197-run victory over Australia in the fifth test at the Oval, despite a battling century from Michael Hussey which threatened to take the game into a fifth day.

Australia, who needed at least a draw to retain the Ashes they won back by crushing England 5-0 in 2006-7, were dismissed for 348 in their second innings after being set a record 546 for victory. The series was tied 1-1 after Australia won the fourth test at Headingley within three days.

Earlier, Australia had batted with grim determination through the final day to earn a draw in the third Ashes Test against England. Centurion Michael Clarke and Marcus North shared a partnership of 185 and Shane Watson and Michael Hussey also made patient half-centuries in a total of 375 for five which ensured they would go into the fourth test only 1-0 down in the series.

Australia completed a crushing victory over England in the fourth test to level the Ashes series at 1-1. The touring side ended England’s entertaining lower order resistance 20 minutes after lunch on the third day, Mitchell Johnson bowling Graham Onions to dismiss the hosts for 263 and seal victory by an innings and 80 runs.

Sri Lanka-New Zealand Test Series
An illness-depleted New Zealand were bamboozled in the face of pace and spin as Sri Lanka cruised to a 202-run victory in the first Test to lead the two-match series. The Kiwis, set an improbable target of 413 runs, collapsed to 210 all out in their second innings before tea on the fifth and final day at the Galle International Stadium.

Sri Lanka clinched second spot behind South Africa in the official rankings as they swept aside New Zealand by 96 runs in the final cricket Test to sweep the series 2-0. Left-arm spinner Rangana Herath claimed five wickets as the Kiwis, set an improbable victory target of 494 runs, were bowled out for 397 in their second innings just before tea on the fifth day.

Sri Lanka-Pakistan One Day series
Teenager Umar Akmal smashed an unbeaten 102 off 72 balls as Pakistan won the fourth one-dayer by 146 runs to record their first win on a dismal tour of Sri Lanka. Umar's maiden international century and a dogged 89 from skipper Younus Khan lifted Pakistan to 321-5 after the tourists elected to bat in the day-night match at the Premadasa stadium.

Sri Lanka-Pakistan T20 match
Pakistan clinched a 52-run victory over Sri Lanka in a one-off Twenty20 international to finish their losing tour on a high on Wednesday. Pakistan, who lost the test series 2-0 and the one-day series 3-2, dominated the match with skipper Shahid Afridi guiding his team to a competitive 172 for five in 20 overs.

Zimbabwe-Bangladesh One-Day Series
Bangladesh raced to a five-wicket defeat of Zimbabwe in the fifth match to win the series 4-1. Zimbabwe’s Charles Coventry equalled the highest individual One-day International score, but it also became the highest ODI score in a losing cause. Coventry’s big-hitting party was gate-crashed by Tamim Iqbal, who helped Bangladesh wrap up the five-match series. Coventry blasted an unbeaten 194 to equal former Pakistan opener Saeed Anwar’s 12-year record as Zimbabwe piled up 312-8 in their 50 overs. But Bangladesh opener Tamim then hit his country’s highest individual score of 154 as the tourists took victory with 13 balls to spare.

Nehru Cup, 2009
Subrata Paul was hero and saviour rolled into one for India. The mercurial goalkeeper made three brilliant saves in a nerve-wracking penalty shootout as India overcame a strong Syria 6-5 to retain the ONGC Nehru Cup. The tournament was held at New Delhi.

Buick Open
Tiger Woods cruised to a bogey free, final round three-under 69 and a three shot victory to lift the Buick Open title for a third and possibly final time. The troubled Detroit auto-maker is expected to pull out its sponsorship which will lead to the tournament disappearing from the PGA Tour calendar in 2010.

World Golf Championship-Bridgestone Invitational
Tiger Woods created history on the par-70 greens of Firestone Country Club clinching the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational for a record seventh time at Akron in Ohio (USA). India’s Jeev Milkha Singh tumbled down the ladder playing his worst card of the event (six over 76) to finish tied 64.

PGA Championship, 91st
Y.E. Yang, a 37-year-old South Korean who was in PGA Tour qualifying school nine months ago, has become the first Asian-born player to capture a major title. Even more memorable was that he beat Tiger Woods to win the title.

Major success for Force India
After 29 false starts, the Vijay Mallya-owned Force India finally nixed the hoodoo and scored their maiden Formula One points with Giancarlo Fisichella finishing second in the Belgian Grand Prix. The 36-year-old Italian driver, rumoured to have one foot in Ferrari, shunned extravagance to run a flawless race and trailed Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari, which had snatched the lead using the Kinetic Energy Recovery System, all the way for a podium finish and earns eight valuable points. The Italian finished less than a second behind Raikkonen.

Rogers Cup
Mahesh Bhupathi and his Bahamian partner Mark Knowles continued their rampaging form to lift their fourth ATP title together, beating seventh seeds Max Mirnyi and Andy Ram in straight sets in the finals of $ three million Rogers Cup. The third seeds won 6-4, 6-3 to clinch their first title at an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tennis tournament.



Sports News in Brief: July 2009

Mainz Classic—Anand’s 11-year streak is snapped
Viswanathan Anand’s loss in Mainz for the first time in 11 years and the world champion’s blotted ‘rapid’ record have invited commentaries suggesting the end of an era. Worse, Anand could not even make it to the final of the four-player event.
Undisputed champion in rapid chess for a decade, Anand had won the Mainz Chess Classic in one to one contests against Vladimir Kramnik, Judit Polgar and Magnus Carlsen in the last eight years. He had also won the World Rapid Championships held under the auspices of the world body (FIDE) a few times before the event went out of the FIDE calendar. Barring the two significant rapid losses in tie-breakers against Gata Kamsky (Hyderabad, 1993/94) and Anatoly Karpov (Lausanne, 1998), Anand was always the master of all that he surveyed in the shorter version of Chess.

England-Australia Test series
Andrew Flintoff bowled with furious pace and sustained hostility to propel England to their first Ashes win over Australia at Lord’s since 1934. Flintoff bowled unchanged from the Pavilion end to finish on the honours’ board with five for 92, as England wrapped up the second Ashes Test by 115 runs.

In the first Test, James Anderson and Monty Panesar staged one of cricket’s great escapes as England clung on for a dramatic draw. England’s last-wicket duo batted together for 40 minutes to deny Ashes holders Australia what seemed a certain victory.

Sri Lanka-Pakistan One Day series

Sri Lanka cruised to a 2-0 series lead with a comfortable six-wicket victory against Pakistan in the second one-day international. Left arm pace bowler Thilan Thushara claimed three wickets as Sri Lanka bowled out Pakistan for a below-par 168 in 47 overs.

Sri Lanka-Pakistan Test series

Sri Lanka snatched an incredible win over Pakistan in the first cricket Test, defending a meagre 167 runs to claim the series opener by 50 runs. Pakistan resumed the fourth day within sight of a convincing win, needing 97 more runs to win with eight wickets in hand and two days to remaining. But Sri Lankan left-arm spinner Rangana Herath and seamer Thilan Thushara upended the Pakistan innings, striking at regular intervals to hasten a batting collapse.

Pakistan suffered a spectacular collapse in the second Test also. Sitting pretty at 285-1 just before lunch on the third day, Pakistan crashed to 320 all out after the break to leave Sri Lanka a victory target of 171 for a decisive 2-0 lead in the three-match series. Sri Lanka cruised home by seven wickets with two days to spare.

Kumar Sangakkara hit an unbeaten century to steer Sri Lanka to a draw in the final Test against Pakistan and win his first series as captain. Sri Lanka clinched the series 2-0, their first at home against Pakistan after five unsuccessful attempts, and provided Sangakkara with a winning start as captain after he took over from Mahela Jayawardene in April 2009. Of the previous five series between the two nations on Sri Lankan soil, Pakistan had won three and drawn two.

West Indies-Bangladesh Test Series
Mahmudullah completed a memorable debut Test when he cruelly exposed West Indies’ frailty to spin, and bowled Bangladesh to a historic 95-run victory in the opening Test. Bangladesh’s victory, which came about four years after their solitary Test win against Zimbabwe on home soil in Chittagong, was made more remarkable because their new captain and primary fast bowler Mashrafe Mortaza spent the entire West Indies innings off the field nursing a knee injury.

Bangladeshi stand-in captain Shakib Al Hasan then led from the front with 96 not out as his side beat the West Indies in the second and final Test and clinch the series 2-0 series. The win was the biggest thing for Bangladesh in nine years.

West Indies-India One Day series
India sealed their fifth One-day series win on the trot after persistent rain ruined the fourth and final One-dayer against the West Indies. The tourists won the four-match series 2-1 following victories in the series opener in Jamaica and the third match played at Gros Islet.

Tour de France
Spaniard Alberto Contador emerged as the new cycling boss when he wrapped up his second Tour de France title on the Champs-Elysees on Lance Armstrong’s return to the race.  

Bhullar lifts Asian tour title
Gaganjeet Bhullar, 21-year-old Kapurthala lad, pocketed a cheque for $63,400 as he clinched his first Asian Tour title edging past 28-year-old Australian Adam Blyth by two strokes in the Indonesia President Invitational in Jakarta.

England-India Test series
England beat India 3-2 after trailing 0-2 at one stage and 1-2 at half-time in the third and final hockey test at Birmingham to win the series 2-1 after winning the first Test 3-1 and losing the second 3-4.

Lewis Hamilton wins Hungarian GP
Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton won the Hungarian Grand Prix to mark McLaren’s return to form after a slump of 10 races without success. Kimi Raikkonen, driving the only Ferrari in the race after Brazilian team mate Felipe Massa suffered a serious head injury in qualifying, was second.

Wimbledon 2009
After a marathon slugfest lasting 4 hours and 16 minutes, Roger Federer edged out American Andy Roddick to win his sixth Wimbledon title and embrace history by becoming the only player in the history of the game to have won 15 Grand Slam titles. The last set, played over 30 games and lasting 1 hour and 35 minutes was also the longest ever set in a men’s Grand Slam final.

Serena Williams beat sister Venus 7-6, 6-2 to win the women’s singles title. She won her third singles crown at Wimbledon, following a six-year gap.

Ninth seeded Mark Knowles (Bahamas) and Anna-Lena Groenefeld (Germany) stunned top seeds and favourite Leander Paes (India) and Cara Black (Zimbabwe) 7-5, 6-3 to win the mixed doubles title.

Serena Williams teamed with big sister Venus to beat Rennae Stubbs and Samantha Stosur of Australia to win the women’s doubles title.

Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic lifted their second consecutive men’s doubles title at the expense of top seeds Bob and Mike Bryan.



Sports News in Brief: June 2009

Sania wins Indonesian Open, scripts history
Ace woman shuttler Saina Nehwal has scripted history by becoming the first Indian to win a Super Series tournament after she clinched the Indonesian Open title with a stunning victory over higher ranked Chinese Lin Wang in Jakarta. Saina clinched her maiden Super Series title beating Wang 12-21, 21-18, 21-9 in an edge-of-the-seat thriller. Her triumph is the best ever performance by any Indian woman and at par with All England Championship titles won by Prakash Padukone and her current coach Pullela Gopichand.

Asian Boxing Championship, 2009
Suranjoy Singh brought an end to a 15-year drought by winning a gold medal for India in Asian Boxing Championships that concluded in Zhuhai, China. World youth champion T. Nanao Singh also came very close to winning a gold but missed it by a whisker. Jai Bhagwan also had to settle for silver as he lost his final bout. With one gold, two silver and four bronze medals, India finished third after China and Uzbekistan in the elite boxing competition. It is India’s best performance in the meet since 1982 when India had won two gold, two silver and two bronze in Seoul.

Twenty-20 World Cup

Pakistan magnificently rose from the dead at Lords cricket ground to clinch the world title. Pakistani cricket had faced many trials and tribulations of late and this win proved all the more special. Defying odds, they cakewalked to victory over Sri Lanka by eight wickets with eight balls to spare in the final. Shahid Afridi, echoing his performance in the semi-final, with a decisive undefeated 54 from 40 balls, in addition to a tidy return of one for 20 in fours overs with the ball, proved to be the major difference between the two teams.
Player of the tournament: Tilekratne Dilshan, Sri Lanka. Player of the Final: Shahid Afridi, Pakistan. Highest Run scorer of the tournament: Tilekratne Dilshan, Sri Lanka (317 runs). Highest Wicket taker of the tournament: Umer Gul, Pakistan (13 wickets).

Twenty-20 Women World Cup
England women scripted history by winning a World Cup double after their comprehensive six-wicket victory over New Zealand in the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup final held in London. England, who had won the ODI World Cup in Australia in March 2009, produced a clinical bowling and batting performance against the Kiwis at the historic Lord’s.

West Indies-India One Day series
Yuvraj Singh set India up for a 20-run victory over West Indies in the first One-day International at Kingston, Jamaica, with a boundary-laced 131 that propelled India to 339 for six from their 50 overs. In reply West Indies were 319 all out. An unbeaten 85 from Runako Morton guided West Indies to a convincing eight-wicket victory over India in the second match to tie the four-match series at 1-1. The visiting Indian team made a modest 188 after a patient 95 from skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni rescued them from 82 for eight.

Santosh Trophy
Goa won their fifth national title for the Santosh Trophy via tie-breaker by defeating Bengal. The tournament was held at Chennai.

Confederations Cup
Brazil defended their Confederations Cup title with a crushing come-from-behind 3-2 victory to inflict a cruel loss on tenacious underdogs, the United States. It was their third Confederations Cup crown following triumphs in 1997 and 2005. The tournament was held in South Africa. Luis Fabiano has emerged from the Confederations Cup as one of Brazil’s new golden boys. The Sevilla striker was the tournament top scorer with five goals, including his crucial brace in the final.

US Open, 2009
Lucas Glover of the United States won the 109th US Open at Bethpage Black. He finished with a three-over 73 for a total of four-under 276, two strokes clear of Phil Mickelson. It was just the second PGA victory in the career of the 29-year-old from South Carolina and came as a stunning upset. Ross Fisher of England finished top European alone in fifth place.

Jeev Asia’s highest ranked golfer
Jeev Milkha Singh is currently the highest ranked Asian golfer, according to the latest official rankings. Jyoti Randhawa was the next Indian at 139, while Orlando-based Arjun Atwal, who remains out of action due to injuries, is 276th. Shiv Kapur is at 198, while S.S.P. Chowrasia was at 403.

Women Champions Challenge-II Tournament
Indian women’s hockey team won the inaugural Women’s Champions Challenge-II tournament defeating Belgium 6-3 in exciting final in Kazan (Russia). Ireland took the bronze, scraping past Ukraine 2-1.

Rani Rampal was the match-winner for India with four goals. She also emerged as the top scorer of the event. Indian skipper Surinder Kaur was declared the best player of the tournament. India have now qualified for the Champions Challenge-I, the winner of which will qualify for the elite league: Champions Trophy.

French Open 2009
Roger Federer’s quest to win the French Open, the only Grand Slam title which had eluded him, finally ended when he won the French open singles title by defeating Robin Soderling. In winning his 14th Grand Slam title, which equals Pete Sampras’ all-time record, the 27-year-old Swiss also became only the sixth man to win all four of the game’s major crowns.

Svetlana Kuznetsova won her second grand slam title when she outplayed fellow Russian and world number one Dinara Safina 6-4 6-2 to win the women’s singles title. The seventh-seeded Kuznetsova, US Open champion in 2004, dictated the points consistently and prevailed after 74 minutes on Centre Court to deny Safina a first grand slam title.

Leander Paes won his ninth Grand Slam title when he and his Czech partner Lukas Dlouhy overcame a first set lapse to tame Wesley Moodie and Dick Norman in the final of the French Open men’s doubles. The third seeded Indo-Czech pair defeated the giant-killing South African-Belgian pair 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 to win their first Grand Slam title together. It is almost after a gap of three years that Paes has won men’s doubles title at a Major, since winning the 2006 US Open with Martin Damm. Paes had earlier won the French Open in 1999 and 2001 with his estranged compatriot Mahesh Bhupathi.

Liezel Huber and Bob Bryan of the United States beat Vania King of the United States and Marcelo Melo of Brazil to win the mixed doubles championship. The title is Bryan’s second consecutive in mixed doubles at the French Open and his sixth Grand Slam mixed doubles title overall, each with a different partner. For Huber, it was her first mixed doubles Grand Slam title. She has won four women’s doubles major championships.

Gerry Weber Open

Tommy Haas upset second-seeded Novak Djokovic in the Gerry Weber Open final. The 31-year-old German became the oldest ATP tour winner in 2009 after collecting his 12th career title in a tournament seen as a major warm-up for Wimbledon.

Dey first Indian Junior lifter to win medal in world championship
National record holder Sukhen Dey has become the first Indian male lifter in decades to win a medal at the world level by bagging bronze in the World Junior Weightlifting championship in Bucharest, Romania.

Sushil strikes gold in German GP
Star Indian wrestler Sushil Kumar bounced back in style by winning the gold in the German Grand Prix Freestyle and Greco Roman tournament in Dortmund. He won the gold in the 66 kg freestyle category. Apart from Sushil, Rahul Balasaheb Aware also bagged a gold medal in the 55 kg freestyle category as India signed off with five medals, including two gold, one silver and two bronze. Rajiv Tomar won the silver medal in the 120 Kg freestyle division, while Ravinder Singh and Ramesh Kumar bagged the bronze in the 60 kg Greco Roman and 74 kg freestyle



Sports News in Brief: May 2009

Twenty20 to feature in Guangzhou Asian Games: India and Pakistan have promised to send their best cricket teams as the sport makes its maiden Asian Games appearance in Guangzhou in 2010. “India and Pakistan were the drivers. Asia’s four Test-playing nations have committed to sending their best available teams. Both men’s and women’s teams will participate in a Twenty20 format contest, with India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh automatically qualifying, along with host nation China.


Deccan Chargers win IPL, 2009: In a surcharged finale before a packed stadium, Deccan Chargers soared to the summit of the Twenty20 Indian Premier League from 2008’s zenith by overcoming Royal Challengers Bangalore by six runs. The best bowling of the match by Anil Kumble, who claimed four for 16, thus, went in vain, as Challengers choked in their run chase.
Golden player of the league:
Adam Gilchrist.
Orange Cap for highest run getter of the tournament:
Mathew Hayden.
Purple Cap for highest wicket taker of the tournament:
R.P. Singh.
U-23 success of the tournament:
Rohit Sharma.
Fairplay award:
Kings XI Punjab.

England-West Indies Test series:
England began a Test series on a winning note for the first time in 14 attempts and won at Lord's for the first time since 2005 as they wrapped up a convincing 10-wicket success against West Indies in the first Test. Seamers James Anderson and Tim Bresnan ripped through the West Indies batting order to lead England to victory by an innings and 83 runs in the second Test and win the series 2-0.

England-West Indies One-Day series:
Paul Collingwood hit an unbeatedn 47 and took 3 wickets for 16 runs as England beat West Indies by six wickets in the second match to take a 1-0 lead. The first match was washed out due to rain. England then beat West Indies by 58 runs in the third and final one-day international in Birmingham, to win the series 2-0.

Pakistan-Australia One-Day Series:
Shahid Afridi exposed Australia’s frailties against spin to help Pakistan to a four-wicket win in the first One-Day International at the Dubai Stadium. Andrew Symonds starred in Australia’s much improved performance with both bat and ball as they beat Pakistan by six wickets in the second day-night international. Clarke and Shane Watson combined for an unbroken 197-run stand, to give Aussies a 3-1 lead in the five-game series, ensuring their first One-day series win since September 2008, when they beat Bangladesh in Darwin. Kamran Akmal hit an aggressive century to overshadow Shane Watson’s hundred as Pakistan beat Australia by seven wickets in the fifth and final match.


South Africa-Australia One- Day Series: Herschelle Gibbs hit a sparkling century and Dale Steyn took four wickets to lift South Africa to a series-clinching 61-run win over Australia in the fourth one-dayer. The hosts clinched the series 3-1.

India to host Champions League in India: Twelve teams will contest in the inaugural Champions League Twenty20 (CLT20) tournament to be played in India from October 8-23, 3009. The tournament will feature three teams from India (two finalists and the top league finishing team), top two domestic T20 teams from South Africa, England, Australia and the domestic T20 Champions from New Zealand, West Indies and Sri Lanka. The Royal Challengers, Deccan Chargers and Delhi Daredevils will represent India, Victoria and New South Wales will represent Australia, while the Cobras and Eagles will the two South African teams.The tournament is a joint venture by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Cricket Australia (CA) and Cricket South Africa (CSA).

Wisden’s first-ever Dream Test XI:Wisden, the highly respected cricket publication, has named Virender Sehwag as the leading cricketer in the world for 2008. The five previous winners have been Ricky Ponting, Shane Warne, Andrew Flintoff, Muttiah Muralitharan and Jacques Kallis.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni has been named as the captain of its first-ever Dream Test XI which has five Indians in the ranks. India’s rich vein of form found ample reflection in Wisden’s first-ever dream XI which includes Sehwag, Dhoni, Sachin Tendulkar, Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan.


India has the largest representation in the Test squad, followed by Australia (Ricky Ponting and Mitchell Johnson) and South Africa (Graeme Smith and Dale Steyn) who have two each.


Flamboyant batsman Kevin Pietersen is the lone English player in the XI, while the West Indies is represented by run-machine Shivnarine Chanderpaul. Smith is Dhoni’s deputy in the side.

Sudirman Cup: The 2009 Sudirman Cup (World Mixed Team Badminton Championships) was held in the Guangzhou Gymnasium of Guangzhou, China. Hosts China crushed Korea 3-0 in the final to win the cup.

India to host World Badminton Championship: Players from 50 countries will participate in the World Badminton Championship, to be held at the Gachibowli stadium in Hyderabad, from August 10 to 16, 2009. India would be hosting this mega event for the first time. The World Badminton Championship, which is held every year, except in an Olympic year, was last held in Kuala Lumpur in 2007, and will move to Paris in 2010. 


World Boxing Council Flyweight title: Japan’s Daisuje Naito defeated China’s Xiong Zhaozhong to retain the title.


Champions League: Lionel Messi produced something special in the form of a rare headed goal to help Barcelona beat Manchester United 2-0 in the Champions League final and establish itself as the unofficial best team on the planet. The win was Barcelona’s third in Europe’s premier club competition, following their earlier successes in 1992 and 2006 and completed a treble after their successes in La Liga and the King’s Cup.

UEFA Cup: An extra-time goal from Brazilian mid-fielder Jadson earned Shakhtar Donetsk a 2-1 victory over Werder Bremen in the UEFA Cup final to clinch the Ukrainian side’s first European title.

English League, 18th: Manchester United captured their 18th English league title when they secured the point they needed in a 0-0 draw with Arsenal.

US Masters, 2009: Argentina’s Angel Cabrera, who had not cracked the top five in any event in more than a year, won the 73rd Masters in a sudden-death playoff with some unlikely help from a tree. Cabrera, who had not won a title since claiming his first major at the 2007 US Open at Oakmont, made a par on the second playoff hole, to defeat Kenny Perry, who at 48 could have become golf’s oldest Major champion.


Asia Cup: South Korea won their third Asia Cup hockey title after beating three-time champions Pakistan 1-0 in a hard-fought final in Malaysia. China claimed third place after a 7-6 penalty shootout with Malaysia. Tushar Khandekar pumped in two late goals as defending champions India routed Japan 5-1 to finish a lowly fifth in the seven-nation Asia Cup.

Azlan Shah Cup:
India beat hosts Malaysia 3-1 to win their fourth Sultan Azlan Shah title in Malaysia. Previous victories were in 1985, 1991 and 1995. This was India’s first title win abroad since 2003. Sandeep Singh was named the player of the tournament. He was also the top goal scorer, hitting 6 out of India’s 12 goals. Arjun Halappa was named the player of the final.


Rohini becomes first Indian woman to win a international medal: Chennai-based sailor Rohini Rau has won the bronze medal in the Laser radial event of the 2009 Izola Spring Cup in Slovenia, becoming the first Indian woman to finish on the podium in an international Olympic class Regatta. Elisabetta Macchini of Italy landed the gold followed by Austrian Katharina Roeggla.


Gagan touches peak: Gagan Narang, the 26-year-old Hyderabad sharpshooter has become the first Indian to bag a 50 m rifle three position gold in a World Cup, with an aggregate of 1264.0 points at Changwon (South Korea). His burgeoning kitty now has three World Cup gold and two bronze. He was also the first Indian to clinch a Beijing Olympic quota berth when he bagged his first gold at the 2006 World Cup in Guangzhou in the 10 m rifle event.

Sawant shoots bronze at Munich world cup: Tejaswani Sawant won a bronze in the women’s three position rifle event of the shooting World Cup at Munich. She is the first time World Cup finalist.

Alain Bernard sets swimming world record: France’s Alain Bernard set a new 100 m freestyle swimming record with a time of 46.94 seconds at the French championships.


Yuki wins 2nd ITF title on the trot: Yuki Bhambri gave ample display of his class as the Delhi teen sensation when he won his second successive ITF Men’s Futures title after edging past top seed Raven Klassen.



Sports News in Brief: March-April 2009

India trio clinch recurve gold: Mangal Singh Champia, Jayanta Talukdar and Rahul Banerjee combined to clinch their second successive gold in the men’s recurve team event as India signed off with three medals in the Archery World Cup Stage I at Santo Domnigo in Dominican Republic.
Dola Banerjee settled for a third place finish in the women’s recurve, while women’s compound team of Jhano Hansdah, Bheigyabati Chanu and Manjudha Soy also finished third.

Yonex-Sunrise Indian Open: Men’s Singles: Taufik Hidayat, Indonesia. Women’s Singles: Hongyan Pi, China. Men’s doubles: Tan Fook Choong and Wan Wah Lee, Malaysia. Mixed doubles: Flandy Limpele and Vita Marissa, Indonesia.

Women’s World Cup: Caroline Atkins top-scored with 40 runs and Nicky Shaw took four wickets for 34 as England beat New Zealand by four wickets to claim the women’s World Cup. India finished third.

West Indies-England One-Day Series: England ended their ragged tour of the West Indies on a high when an Andrew Flintoff hat-trick helped them beat the hosts by 26 runs in a rain-shortened match to win the one-day series 3-2.

New Zealand-India One Day Series: Virender Sehwag (125 not out) smashed the fastest ODI century by an Indian to fashion the team’s commanding 10-wicket win in the fourth match, also giving India their first one-day cricket series win in New Zealand. Sehwag’s 60-ball hundred bettered Mohammad Azharuddin’s 62-ball century against the Kiwis at Baroda. India won  the series 3-1.

New Zealand-India Test Series: India still needed to take two wickets before the third Test was called off and declared to have ended as a draw. However, India came out stronger by winning the three-Test series 1-0. This was India’s first Test series win in New Zealand after 41 years. Earlier, Harbhajan Singh scalped six wickets to guide India to their first Test triumph on New Zealand soil in 33 years as the visitors spanked the Kiwis by 10 wickets in the first Test. The second Test ended in a draw.

South Africa-Australia Test Series: Australia clinched a series win over South Africa and remained top of the world rankings after completing a crushing 175-run victory in the second Test. South Africa left-arm spinner Paul Harris took six wickets as the Proteas beat Australia by an innings and 20 runs to win the third Test but lose the three-Test series 2-1. The first Test had been won by Australia.

Gautam Gambhir breaks Gavaskar’s record for most runs after 25 tests:
Gautam Gambhir’s 167 in the third Test against New Zealand helped him reach 2,271 runs (average 54.07), the most by an Indian in his first 25 tests, eclipsing Sunil Gavaskar’s 2,256 (avg 52.47).

Dravid becomes world record holder of most catches: India’s Rahul Dravid became the world record holder of most catches in Tests, surpassing Australian Mark Waugh, when he caught New Zealand opener Tim McIntosh at third slip for his 182nd catch on the fourth day of the third and last Test against New Zealand.

Deodhar Trophy: West Zone beat East Zone to win the title.

Vijay Hazare Trophy: Tamil Nadu defeated Bengal by 66 runs to win the Premier Cup.

Australia receives Test Championship Mace: Australian captain Ricky Ponting received the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Test Championship Mace for his team’s top finish in table in the 2008-09 calendar year.

Serena Williams voted player of the year: Serena Williams has been voted the WTA tour player of the year for the second time. Dinara Safina was selected most improved player for 2008, and Zheng Jie of China was chosen comeback player of the year. Top-ranked Cara Black of Zimbabwe and Liezel Huber of the United States were chosen doubles team of the year. Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark was selected newcomer of the year.


Sports News in Brief: Feb-March 2009

Greatest Race on Earth: The Indian marathon team topped the South and South East Asia region standings for the third year in a row and ended up overall third in the fifth edition of the Greatest Race on Earth challenge which concluded with the Hong Kong marathon. India’s 25-year-old Army man Angad Kumar Prasad finished men’s full marathon on seventh spot in the final leg of Standard Chartered Greatest Race on Earth challenge. Angad’s effort kept India on top in the South Asia and West Asia challenge for the fifth year in a row.


West Indies-England Test Series: England suffered a humiliating innings and 23-run defeat at the hands of the West Indies in the first Test when the tourists were bowled out for 51 runs in their second innings. West Indies cricket was plunged into fresh controversy when the second Test against England had to be abandoned after just 10 balls because of a dangerous outfield. England and West Indies drew
the third Test when play was called off with four overs still to bowl.


Pakistan-Sri Lanka Test Series: The series had to be called-off after a terrorist strike on Sri Lankan team during the Lahore Test match. Earlier, the first Test had ended in a tame draw with both teams hitting in access of 600 runs in their first innings. Younis Khan hit 313 to help Pakistan achieve a record total. For Sri Lanka, Mahela Jayawardene and Thilan Samaraweera posted world record partnership of 437 runs for the fourth wicket. Sri Lanka has now inscribed their name on three world records for the second, third and now fourth wickets. Jayawardene, on the other hand, has now been involved in two separate world record partnerships, a landmark which he shares with Donald Bradman.


South Africa-Australia Test Series: Fiery fast bowling from Mitchell Johnson and Peter Siddle led Australia to a 162-run win over South Africa in the first Test. Australia thus took 1-0 up in a three-match series that will determine which of the two teams tops the world Test rankings.


Australia-New Zealand One-Day Series: Australia lost the first two matches but then snapped their five consecutive ODIs losing streak by registering a thrilling 32-run victory over New Zealand in the must-win third tie. Australia then went on to a six-wicket win in the fourth match to level the five-match series 2-2. Australia retained the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy after the crucial fifth and final One-Day International was called off because of heavy rain.


Sri Lanka-India Twenty20 Match: The Pathan brothers helped India win the match by three wickets. India were looking down the barrel at 115-7, needing another 57 runs from 29 balls, when Yusuf was joined by his brother Irfan and both just blasted their way out of trouble.


New Zealand-India One Day Series: Shrugging off the T20 defeats, India bounced back with a solid batting display to spank New Zealand by 53 runs on the basis of Duckworth-Lewis method in the rain-marred first one-dayer. The second match was abandoned due to rain. India then hit record 392 runs with the help of sparkling 163 not out by Sachin Tendulkar to win the third match by 58 runs and take a unassailable 2-0 lead.


New Zealand-India Twenty-20 Series: Suresh Raina’s fighting unbeaten 61 went in vain as world champions India began their New Zealand tour on a dismal note with the hosts thrashing them by seven wickets in the first Twenty-20  match. New Zealand followed this win with a last ball win in the second match, thus taking the series 2-0.


Duleep Trophy: Ramesh Powar wrecked South Zone with a 10-wicket match haul as West Zone lifted their 17th Duleep Trophy title.


Women’s Indian Open: 19-year-old Thai girl, Phatlum Pornanong emerged winner of the tournament. She pipped her nearest rival Kim Hae-Jung of Korea by two strokes to defend the title.


New Zealand-India Test Series: Captain Sandeep Singh and Dilip Tirkey struck a goal each in the second half to guide India to a 2-0 win over New Zealand in the final Test and win the series 2-0.



Sports News in Brief: January-February 2009

National Championship, 16th: Jharkhand topped the medal tally followed by Services and Assam. Jharkhand bagged five medals—two gold, two silver, one bronze.


Mumbai Marathon, 2009: Eager to put behind November 2008’s terror attacks in Mumbai, more than 43,000 people thronged the streets to participate in the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon. In men’s section Kenya’s Kenneth Mun Gara won. In the women’s event, Ethiopia’s Haille Kebebush was winner.


West Indies-New Zealand One-Day Series:New Zealand beat the West Indies by five wickets via Duckworth-Lewis in a rain-shortened fifth and final ODI to win the five-match series 2-1.


Australia-South Africa One-Day Series: Australia were dethroned as the number one team in one-dayers by South Africa who demolished the hosts by 39 runs in the fifth and final match to clinch the ODI series with an emphatic 4-1 margin.

Jacques Kallis became the second all-rounder to aggregate 10,000 runs and bag 200 wickets or more in ODIs. Sri Lanka’s Sanath Jayasuriya was the first to achieve this feat.


Pakistan-Sri Lanka One-Day Series: Sri Lanka bull-dozed Pakistan by 235 runs in the third and final match to win the three-match series 2-1. Pakistan’s defeat was the second biggest in terms of runs suffered by a Test-playing nation in ODIs.


Sri Lanka-India One-Day Series: An all-round display by the Indian team helped them to win the five-match series 4-1. M.S. Dhoni became the most successful Indian captain with this series victory. Dhoni also established an Indian record for most wins (9) in succession. For Sri Lanka, Jayasuriya became the oldest centurion in one-day internationals and went past the 13,000-run mark during the series.


Ranji Trophy: There was no stopping the Mumbai juggernaut from rolling to victory in the 75th edition of Ranji Trophy. Mumbai crushed Uttar Pradesh by 243 runs to record their 38th title win in the competition.


Duleep Trophy: West Zone defeated South Zone to win the Duleep Trophy for the 15th time.

National Track Cycling Championship: Kerala won the overall team championship Trophy. Punjab was placed second. The men’s Trophy was bagged by Railways, while Punjab stood second. In women’s section the Kerala eves gained the top slot while Manipur was second.

Ronaldo crowned player of the year: Cristiano Ronaldo has been crowned world player of the year, making him the first Europe- based footballer to win the FIFA award since its inception in 1991. It gives the 23-year-old a clean sweep of all recognized major individual and club honours available to a footballer.

National Championship, 70th:
Olympian Achanta Sharath Kamal retained the men’s singles title for the Maharaja Pithapuram Cup, while top seed K. Shamini lifted the Travancore Cup by winning the women’s singles competition.

Australian Open, 2009:
Men’s Singles title: Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federer.

Women’s Singles title: Serena Williams beat Dinara Safina (Russia).

Men’s Doubles title: Bob and Mike Bryan beat Mahesh Bhupathi and Mark Knowles.

Women’s Doubles title: Serena and Venus Williams.

Mixed Doubles title: Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza.

The win gave Sania her first Grand Slam title and Bhupathi his seventh mixed-doubles crown and 11th Grand slam title.

Yuki Bhambri created history by becoming the fourth Indian to win a junior Grand Slam title, when he won the boys’ final.


Chennai Open 2009: Marin Cilic of Croatia beat Somdev Devvarman to win the title. Americans Eric Butorac and Rajeev Ram won the doubles title.