Bindra says goodbye in bad year for seniors, youngsters shine

first_imgBy Abhishek Hore New Delhi, Dec 20 (PTI) Perfectionist Abhinav Bindra walked into the sunset after a glorious career but, in an unfortunate coincidence, dark clouds hovered over a house in disorder after the Indian shooting team returned with only luggage to boast for following a barren Olympic campaign. Bindra was not far away from a fairytale ending. Indias lone individual Olympic gold medallist till date, he quit the sport he loved dearly and practised with single-minded devotion over the last two decades, after winning plenty of laurels across the world. Bindra officially announced his retirement from shooting in September, saying, “It is time to move on and hand over the baton to the younger generation”. With the profile of the sport taking a beating of sorts post Rio, youngsters would do well take a leaf out of Bindras book of training. The World Championship gold-medallist missed out on a second Olympic podium finish by a whisker in his last Games after losing in a tense shoot-off, but still he was by far the best Indian shooter on view in Rio. It was appropriate that the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), governing body for the sport in the country, commemorated the glittering career of Bindra at a gala ceremony. While the sport made noises outside, by the standards Indian shooters have set over the years, it was quiet inside the ranges. Performing regularly gave way to winning a rare medal or two intermittently. The debacle in Rio was the first time since 2004 that India finished without a medal at an Olympic Games, prompting the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) to formulate a review committee headed by Bindra immediately after the multi-sport extravaganza to examine and identify in a cold and ruthless manner the reasons behind the failure. Besides the shooters, the panel was equally scathing on coaches and the national federation in its damning 36-page report, and minced no words as it chastised the Rio flop show while recommending a systematic overhaul. From Gagan Narang, Heena Sidhu to Ayonika Paul, none of the shooters were spared for the disastrous outing, with the panel talking to each shooter individually. Among the juniors though, talented shooters have emerged with quite a few shining on the world stage regularly, indicating a bright future. The rise of junior shooters augers well for the sport, but the seniors have left a lot to be desired with their dismal showing, especially in the mother of all sporting events, where India has brought home four medals since the Athens Games, including a historic gold by Bindra at the 2008 Beijing edition. Vijay Kumar and Gagan Narang continued the trend at London 2012, winning a silver and a bronze each, and the shooters kept the good work going by returning with a decent haul from the Incheon Asian Games and Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014. PTI AH PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more

J-K Governors address disrupted, National Anthem disrespected

first_imgJammu, Jan 2 (PTI) The Budget session of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly began on a stormy note today as opposition held protests against the PDP-BJP government and continued sloganeering even when the national anthem was being played, with Governor N N Vohra cutting short his address to both houses of the legislature and leaving amid the pandemonium.As the Governor entered Central Hall of the Legislature, opposition members from National Conference, Congress, CPI(M) and other Kashmir-based Independent MLAs stood up carrying placards and held protests against the government for its alleged failure on all fronts.Some of the opposition leaders were also sporting black bands.The National Anthem was being played when the Governor entered and some of the opposition members, who were holding protests against the PDP-BJP government over the deaths in Kashmir during the unrest in the Valley, continued with their sloganeering. The protestors stopped the sloganeering for some timeCarrying placards, the opposition members tried to disrupt the Governors address thrice.In his speech to both houses of legislature, the Governor prayed for peace and normalcy in the New Year and hoped all members will strive hard to restore brotherhood and amity in each of the three regions of Jammu and Kashmir.”I will conclude by reiterating my belief that Jammu and Kashmir has a very high potential of being developed as one the leading states. To achieve our goal we need to resolve all disagreements and strive hard to put the state on the path of development,” he said.advertisementHe said it is important that this House sets thoughtful standards of political discourse and paves way for narrowing the differences in regard to political and societal issues cutting across party lines.”If this is done we would succeed in laying foundation of sustainable peace in this state”, he said.Batting for commencement of Indo-Pak dialogue, he said, “It is important that the Indo-Pak dialogue resumes early.It is imperative that we work towards the resolution of conflicts first within our civil society and then in the polity”.As pandemonium broke out in the Central Hall, the Governor cut short his speech.Members of the National Conference and Congress continued their protests and sloganeering when the national anthem was being played twice during the address.Amidst protests and sudden conclusion of his address, the national anthem was played again and members of the opposition were sloganeering. The Governor also left the venue.BJP demanded an apology from opposition included Congress and NC in Jammu andKashmir and asked Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi and Vice President Rahul Gandhi to clarify their stand on disrespect to the national anthem by its members.”It is most unfortunate that members of opposition disrespected the anthem. This is shameful…It is the first time such a disrespect has been shown to the national anthem in J&K”, BJP MLA Ravinder Raina told reporters here. PTI AB DV VSC DVlast_img read more

So called obstructions removed, sure Lodha reforms will be implemented smoothly: Ajay Shirke to India Today

first_imgAfter being shown the door by the Supreme Court for not complying with the Justice RM Lodha panel’s recommendations, dismissed Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Ajay Shirke said, “now that the obstructions have been removed, the reforms will be implemented smoothly”. (Also read: RM Lodha hails victory for cricket as Supreme Court sacks BCCI president Anurag Thakur)Speaking exclusively to India Today, Shirke said the reforms had to adopted through a majority which the BCCI failed to achieve from the state associations.”My understanding of law is limited. Once the Lodha Committee asked me to meet them, at that point I asked a clarification – it was clarified that the existing members have to come and adopt the constitution. At a loss for words to understand how a president, secretary can take responsibility for 30 members,” Shirke told India Today.On being asked whether he and Anurag Thakur obstructed the implementation of the court’s order, Shirke said: “Now that the so called obstructions have been removed, I am sure Lodha reforms will be implemented smoothly.”Shirke also said that now it is for the new dispensation of the BCCI to decide on the conduct of the upcoming India vs England ODI series.In a landmark verdict, the apex court today removed the board’s president Thakur along with Shirke for defying the Lodha panel’s recommendations to bring in structural reforms in the running of the board.A bench comprising Chief Justice TS Thakur, Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud said that as an interim arrangement, the senior-most Vice President of the BCCI will act as the President and the Joint Secretary will act as the Secretary. (Also read: Supreme Court sacks BCCI boss Anurag Thakur, Sourav Ganguly to take over?)advertisementReacting to the decision, Shirke said he is “absolutely fine” with the court’s order but hoped that the world’s richest cricket board does not lose its face globally for all the administrative mess.”I have nothing to say. My role in BCCI is over. If SC has asked me to leave, that’s fine. I hope the new administration runs BCCI well,” he was quoted as saying by a news channel from the UK. (Also read: How BCCI lost control of cricket in India: A timeline)”I hope the new dispensation continues the good work done by the BCCI. Hope the board doesn’t lose more face globally. I also hope the Indian team is able to maintain its supremacy in all three formats of the game,” he added.”At the end of the day, the BCCI comprises of members. It is not about me or the president. It is about the members.””I have no personal attachment to the post. In the past also I have resigned and I have lots of other things to do. I came back to the board as there was a vacancy and I was elected unopposed. Now it has come to this (the Supreme Court). I am completely fine with it and I have no regrets,” he added.The court asked amicus curiae Gopal Subramanium and eminent lawyer Fali Nariman to suggest the names that will be in the committee to be headed by an administrator to oversee the functioning of the BCCI.The apex court said it will pass a separate order on January 19 for appointing the administrator.The bench also said that all the office-bearers of the BCCI and its affiliate state units, who are in conflict with the recommendation of the Lodha committee, will demit office.(With IANS inputs)last_img read more

Manchester United beat 10-man West Ham for sixth successive win

first_imgManchester United benefited from a controversial red card and an equally debatable goal to beat 10-man West Ham 2-0 in the English Premier League on Monday, earning a sixth successive victory.Substitute Juan Mata gave United the lead before Zlatan Ibrahimovic secured victory from what clearly appeared to be an offside position, after referee Mike Dean had controversially dismissed Sofiane Feghouli in the opening stages. (Also read: Jose Mourinho hails Manchester United late show as tribute to birthday boy Alex Ferguson)Despite its numerical advantage, United struggled to break down the home side for long spells and required a number of saves from goalkeeper David de Gea to keep West Ham out.”I think it was not a very good performance,” United manager Jose Mourinho said. “I think it’s very difficult to play football in these circumstances, 48 hours,” after both teams’ previous fixtures.”Only when I brought fresh people on, Mata and (Marcus) Rashford, the team was different,” Mourinho added. “We gave width with Rashford, we gave an extra body in the creative area with Mata.”West Ham manager Slaven Bilic said his club would appeal against the three-game ban Feghouli is facing after his challenge on Phil Jones.”I was very surprised (at the red card), I wouldn’t have been happy with a yellow. The more times I’ve seen it, it’s the other way round, it was Jones who made a more dangerous tackle than Feghouli,” Bilic said.”We are gutted and frustrated, but I’m very proud of the team and I told them after the game that if we continue to work hard and play for each other, we don’t have to worry, we’re going to be very high on the table.”advertisementFeghouli, making his first Premier League start for West Ham, was sent off after just 15 minutes in what replays suggested was a harsh decision.Manuel Lanzini brought two strong saves from De Gea before the break, while Michail Antonio was crucially denied by the Spanish goalkeeper when through one-on-one on the hour mark.West Ham was made to pay just three minutes later with Mourinho’s alterations proving crucial as Rashford beat two defenders before setting up Mata to finish from close range.United wrapped up the victory 12 minutes from time when Ibrahimovic reacted first as the ball bounced off Ander Herrera to fire low and hard past Darren Randolph from just inside the box, with replays showing the striker had been marginally offside.United had struggled to create chances before the break, but did draw one of the saves of the season from West Ham keeper, Randolph, in the 35th, before Jesse Lingard produced an equally spectacular miss.Antonio Valencia was set up at the back post after good work from Ibrahmovic and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but was foiled by the sprawling Randolph, who prevented the ball from crossing his line by the narrowest of margins.The rebound fell to Lingard with the goal at his mercy, but he could only direct his effort onto the post from two yards out, with West Ham somehow escaping as the ball bounced into Randolph’s hands.United remains sixth in the table, but has now moved within five points of second-place Liverpool, which was held to a 2-2 draw at Sunderland earlier on Monday.West Ham dropped to 13th.last_img read more

Wadoo, Abid, Mittali appointed JKSSC Coaches

first_imgJammu, Feb 10 (PTI)The Jammu and Kashmir State Sports Council (JKSSC) today appointed footballer Mehraj-ud-Din Wadoo, cricketer Abid Nabi and gymnast Mittali Dogra as junior coaches, in recognition of their contribution in popularising their respective sports. The decision was made with the approval of the Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, who is the President of the State Sports Council, an official spokesman said. Mehraj-ud-Din Wadoo was part of the national football squad and now plays for Sporting Club Goa. Hailing from Srinagar, Wadoo started his football career as a striker with Iqbal Sports Club Srinagar and then moved on to play for J&K Police. He also played for HAL, ITI, Sporting Goa, Mohun Bagan and East Bengal.Wadoo had scored the winning goal against Bangladesh in the SAFF Cup finals in Karachi in December 2005.He was also a member of the Indian squad that won Nehru Cup in 2007, AFC Challenge Cup in 2008 and the Nehru Cup in 2009.Nabi has played 30 first class games for the state side, taking 108 wickets and scoring 534 runs. Hailing from Sonawar, Srinagar Abid has also played 15 matches in Indian cricket league 2006-2007, as part of Delhi Giants. Mittali Dogra is an individual rhythmic gymnast and has represented India in international competitions. She competed at world championships, including 2009 World Rhythmic Gymnastics championship, the spokesman said. Mittali made J&K proud by creating history to be the first player who represented India in the prestigious Commonwealth Games. PTI AB DK ATlast_img read more


first_imgPrior to the blip at Rio de Janeiro, Indian shooters had been making their guns and pistols talk. The barren run in the Summer Games was a reality check and the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) promptly constituted a panel that conducted a thorough probe and recommended a slew of measures to overhaul the setup. A total of 50 countries will be represented by 452 athletes, including reigning and former Olympic champions, world champions and continental champions, in the tournament that will conclude on March 4. PTI Among the worlds top shooters present will be the likes of Diana Bacosi, Gabriele Rosetti, Hoang Xuan Vinh, Mengxue Zhang, Felipe Almeida Wu, Kimberly Rhodes and double Dakar rally champion and Olympic bronze medallist in shooting, Nasser Al-Attaiya. NRAI president Raninder Singh said, “The sport of shooting has come a long way in the country and the ISSF World Cup New Delhi 2017 is certainly yet another inflexion point for the sport in the country. We warmly welcome all visiting athletes, officials and delegates. It is a proud moment for all our countrymen and we are confident that our athletes will give their very best to make the tricolor fly high. “This would not have been possible without the proactive support of the Government, the Ministry of Sports and the Sports Authority of India and I wish to thank all of them for making this happen.” Provision has also been made in the schedule for mixed events as per the new suggestions that are still in discussion stage for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. They will not be medals events, though. PTI AH SSC SSCadvertisementlast_img read more

World powerboat champ Holmes upbeat on Santosh, Gill

first_imgMumbai, Mar 2 (PTI) Making the switch from racing on the road to racing on the seas, Indias C S Santosh and Gaurav Gill are unknown commodities in the P1 Powerboat Indian Grand Prix of the Seas event starting off the Marine Drive promenade here tomorrow with the qualifying phase.However, seven-time world powerboat champion Neil Holmes, under whom the duo trained in Southampton, United Kingdom, for a week to get the licence to race before competing in events in Florida, USA, is of the view that the Indian wild card duo “will do well”, in the event that culminates with the finale on March 5.”They will do well. Santosh and Gill trained under me for just over a week. Santosh is calculating, methodical and has a good racing mind. Gill is a more fluent driver,” said Holmes who had won seven world titles from 1988 to 1997 in both four-litre and six-litre class of boats.Dakar Rally participant Santosh will be piloting one of two boats being fielded by Baleno RS Booster Jets, with experienced British navigator Martin Robinson to guide him, while Gill – winner of the 2013 Asia-Pacific Rally – will pilot United Breweries Ultra Sharks boat B, guided by navigator George Ivey.A total of 12 boats, representing six teams, will take part in the championship carrying USD 125,000 in prize money.Holmes, who took to the sport at the age of 9 and raced for 49 years, was also of the opinion that if the Arabian Sea waters become choppy then Gill held the edge while Santosh would do well in calmer waters.advertisementIf two boats collide in the race, which is a rare occurrence, then both competitors will be disqualified, said Holmes who had raced for ten years in Dubai, UAE.”The course is such that every boat will try to get into one single line of water for speedy progress,” the veteran racer said, adding that the concept of two-boat team “is exciting”.The cumulative points won by both the boats will decide a teams position in the Grand Prix. PTI SSR NRBlast_img read more

James Anderson hopes for injury-free summer ahead of Ashes tour

first_imgEngland pace spearhead James Anderson is hoping his body can withstand the rigours of the English Test summer before he shifts his focus to the side’s defence of the Ashes in Australia later this year.Anderson, who is recovering from a shoulder injury, is currently preparing for the county season with Lancashire and will not play an international until the first of four Tests against South Africa starting July 6 at Lord’s.England then host West Indies in a three-match series to wrap the test summer in September.”The Tests are a long way away,” Anderson, who is England’s all-time leading Test wicket taker with 467 victims, told reporters.”I’ll manage the first part of the season with Lancashire to see how my shoulder pulls up and how my fitness goes, and if I’m fit then I definitely will try to play all seven (Tests).”I’ll manage the first bit, so I get enough cricket in so I am ready for that Test series but not so much that I turn up tired.”Anderson, who turns 35 in July, is determined to be a part of England’s tour of Australia in November but has refused to look too far into the future.”The Ashes is a very important part of this year for the English cricket team and I’ll have to focus on that closer to the time,” he added.”I’m focused on staying fit… and I need to show the selectors that I’m still eager and hungry.”Anderson is set to feature in Lancashire’s season opener against Essex on April 7.advertisementlast_img read more

Leander Paes wins first title of season in Challenger tournament

first_imgLeander Paes on Sunday won his first title of the season, combining with Canadian Adil Shamasdin to lift the Leon Challenger Tour tennis tournament’s men’s doubles trophy after a straight-set triumph in Leon, Mexico.Paes, who was named a reserve in India’s Davis Cup team for the Uzbekistan tie, and Shamasdin defeated Luca Margaroli (Switzerland) and Caro Zampieri (Brazil) 6-1, 6-4 in the title clash at the USD 75,000 hard court event.With this win, Paes clinched his 20th ATP Challenger title. Paes has now won at least one title every year for the past 26 years.This was Paes’ first final this season. He had earlier reached the semi-finals of Dubai Championships and Delray Beach Open.The last title Paes won on the ATP World Tour was in 2015 when he triumphed at Auckland with South African Raven Klaasen.Paes’ last Grand Slam in the men’s doubles event came in 2013 with Radek Stepanek at the US Open while in mixed doubles, he is still a force, winning three titles with Martina Hingis in 2015 and the French Open last season.Paes was named a reserve along with Rohan Bopanna by new non-playing captain Mahesh Bhupathi, who picked four singles players in the squad.Bhupathi has said that he may pick either Paes or Bopanna, if required, as a doubles specialist in the tie, slated for April 7-9 in Bengaluru.last_img read more

Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble congratulate PV Sindhu on her India Open triumph

first_imgIndia’s Olympic 2016 silver medallist P.V. Sindhu overcame her Rio Games conqueror Carolina Marin of Spain in straight games to win her maiden India Open Superseries badminton title at a packed Siri Fort Sports Complex here on Sunday.  The match-up between Sindhu and Marin was a repeat of the 2016 Rio Olympic final which saw the Spaniard taking away the gold medal in a hard-fought encounter.   But in front of her home fans here, third seed Sindhu posted a 21-19, 21-16 triumph in 46 minutes to give another display of her fast-rising career. (Also Read: PV Sindhu delighted to win maiden India Open Super Series title ) Since the Rio final, it was the second contest between the two shuttlers and the 21-year-old Hyderabadi has won both. With this win, Sindhu also equalised 5-5 in career meetings against the two-time reigning world champion. Accolades started pouring in on social media platforms for the 21-year-old superstar, with Sachin Tendukar, Anil Kumble, Virender Sehwag, Mohammad Kaif among others tweeting their support. Champion moves & a warrior instinct! A true winner all the way. @Pvsindhu1, take a bow. #SindhuvsMarin- sachin tendulkar (@sachin_rt) April 2, 2017 Congratulations @pvsindhu1 on the win! Great game! Wishing you more success! #SindhuvsMarin- Anil Kumble (@anilkumble1074) April 2, 2017 Sport unites all.Sikh, Isaai,Muslim, Hindu;Sabko jode PV Sindhu.Congrats champion @Pvsindhu1 on another wonderful Victory.#SindhuvsMarin Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) April 2, 2017 What a performer, what a champion. Congratulations @Pvsindhu1 on winning the India open. #SindhuvsMarin Mohammad Kaif (@MohammadKaif) April 2, 2017 Congratulations @Pvsindhu1 on winning #IndiaSS against the Olympic Gold Medalist #marin silver medal redeemed?? #SindhuvsMarin .. bravo ?? Randeep Hooda (@RandeepHooda) April 2, 2017last_img read more

The 5-Way Win of Strong Nonprofit Branding

first_imgIf you think brands are just for big-ticket organizations like the Red Cross, United Way and The Humane Society of the United States; or you’re open to the idea, but don’t really get what branding might do for your nonprofit and haven’t pushed to learn more; or you simply don’t want to fight City Hall, then think again. You may very well be undermining your organization’s well being.Every single organization – including yours – has its own personality, its own identity, and its own set of characteristics; a.k.a. its brand. But if you stand back, refusing to define and express your brand (and I mean really staking your claim to it), the way others perceive and talk about your organization will become your brand. An accidental brand.I caution you – don’t be left out of the conversation about your own organization.Here’s the thing: As the nonprofit landscape gets increasingly complex and competitive, it’s more important than ever to clearly convey your characteristics – mission, credibility, and unique methods and impact – in a way that links strongly and clearly to the wants and needs of your primary audiences (e.g. the people whose help you need to (or who are mostly likely to) move your mission forward – program registrants, donors, volunteers and more).The marketplace has changed. Your organization will be talked about whether we like it or not. And it’s time that you join the conversation with a clear, recognized and memorable unified voice for your organization, that speaks to the unique value you deliver (that’s valued by your supporters and prospects). That’s powerful branding.Here are the five wins of great nonprofit branding:1. Clarifies understanding of your org’s value and relevance, in a flashYour brand serves as a simple and effective vehicle to convey the benefits and ultimate value provided by the programs, goods, and services your organization offers.When everything and everyone shares the same overall positioning, your organization is more likely to be perceived accurately.2. Provides an assurance (or reinforcement) of quality and consistencyIf your organization lives your brand, your brand must be built on a far stronger foundation than a recognizable name, logo or tagline. A real brand is about your organizational commitment to deliver products (goods, services, or programs) that are consistent with the brand’s positioning.Fail to deliver appropriate products in an appropriate way (matching your brand) and you’ll lose trust in a second. Make good on your brand promise, and it’s a whole other story. Actions trump words yet again!3. Differentiates your org in a memorable wayDone-right branding makes it possible for you to differentiate your organization in the minds of your audiences, making it stick. Stickiness leads to the enduring relationships that are every nonprofit’s dream.4. Serves as a springboard for customizing messages AND launching new programs, services and productsBranding enables you to convey a consistent overall positioning while tailoring offerings for donors, volunteers, funders and other audiences.In addition, you can build on the foundation of your strong, recognized base brand to more easily and effectively market and fundraise around new programs and services.5. Provides a proactive crisis communications shieldA well-established brand helps your organization carve out a unique position for itself in the public mindset, preventing negative images of other organizations from spilling over to your nonprofit if there’s a scandal in the field.It happens. Be brand prepared.In-depth branding case study: Part One and Part TwoLearn about how branding done right works for Red, and how they got there!last_img read more

The red line: do you need an Oxford comma?

first_imgDear Freelance Editor,Please heal my fractured family. We have been feuding for hours over the Oxford comma – for non-Grammar Nerds, that is the extra comma that can go before the coordinating conjunction (usually “and” or “or”) in a list.For example: should I say, “my mother, my father, my sister and I have been screaming at each other all day” – or “my mother, my father, my sister, [<-- NOTE THE ADDITIONAL COMMA] and I have been screaming at each other all day”?I’m so confused.Sincerely,The Oxford Comma Sounds Really Snooty, Doesn’t It? (TOCSRSDI)Dear TOCSRDSDI,It does sound snooty, yes; it is also known as the serial comma, but let’s stick with calling it the Oxford comma. I only aspire to be a loathsome grammatical elitist.Official best practice varies: The MLA Style Manual, The Chicago Manual of Style, and good old Strunk and White all advocate using an Oxford comma, while the AP Stylebook forbids it.But this is my column, so I am picking a side: I strongly recommend using the Oxford comma in most cases.When used correctly, it eliminates confusion and ambiguity. It is a beautiful, beautiful thing."Ugh, why do we care about commas at all? This sounds really nerdy," you might say.It surrrrre issssss nerdy! But here’s a classic example of why commas are important, generally speaking:“I ate, Grandpa!”vs.“I ate Grandpa!”In one exclamation, the speaker assures Pop-Pop that he does not need a sandwich, thank you so much. In the other, we find a horrifying declaration of intergenerational cannibalism.The difference? One tiny little comma. It’s the delightful, clarifying confetti in the confusing ticker-tape parade that is punctuation!"Okay, nerd, so why do I care about this Oxford comma thing? Honestly, are lists ever that confusing?"Yes, I know you do not want to hit the comma key one more time. Yes, I know that you are very busy and important. But the Oxford comma is worth your time, my friend! Let me show you why…Some vaguely amusing examples:1.) “An Oscar?! Gosh. I’d like to thank Jeff, my agent and God.”Don’t worship your agent Jeff; that can only end badly. Here we go:“An Oscar?! Gosh. I’d like to thank Jeff, my agent, and God.”Ahh, much better. Now it's clear Jeff, your agent, and God are different physical and metaphysical beings.2.) My favorite foods are apples, chicken, peanut butter and pickled herring.Peanut butter and pickled herring together? You sicko. Let’s clarify that sucker.My favorite foods are apples, chicken, peanut butter, and pickled herring.Now your only problem is that you enjoy pickled herring, which is a food that should only appeal to sea lions.3.) He had many friends – including CEOs, whale trainers, leading politicians and amateur pornographers.The leading politicians also dabble in amateur pornography? Yikes.He had many friends – including CEOs, whale trainers, leading politicians, and amateur pornographers.Now THAT sounds like an interesting dinner party!The Oxford comma is a style choice (CHOICE, not requirement) but I encourage you to raise your pinky, look down your nose, and go snooty all the way. I’ll meet you in the parlor for some tea and light conversation about the proclivities of the unwashed rabble, dahlink.*This has been a note from a Freelance Editor.**Join Freelancers Union today and gain access to more great content like this. **Have a question for our resident Red Liner and frequent USER of ALL-CAPS for EMPHASIS, Kate Hamill? Leave it in the comments, or email her at*Again, different manuals recommend different things. If you are required to use AP style at work, you have to eliminate the serial comma – but if you’re calling the shots, slip that sucker in there.last_img read more

Had plans for David Warner, Hilton Cartwright from the outset: Bhuvneshwar Kumar

first_imgBhuvneshwar Kumar said he had plans chalked out for openers David Warner and Hilton Cartwright, the two wickets he got first up as India beat Australia by 50 runs in the second ODI at the Eden Gardens on Thursday.”Yes I planned. First bowl I bowled I knew there is some swing on the wicket.”Specially for Warner, generally I bowl outswingers to him in Tests also so I knew there is a good chance I can get him out. And for Cartwright, it was normal, top of off-stump for him,” Bhuvneshwar, whose first spell (6-2-9-2) had the tourists on the mat, said at the post match press conference.Bhuvneshwar returned figures of 3/9 in 6.1 overs to help India go 2-0 up in the five-match series.Kuldeep Yadav bagged a hat-trick (3/54) taking three consecutive wickets of Mathew Wade, Ashton Agar and Pat Cummins in the 33rd over to become the second bowler in limited overs cricket to script a hat-trick at this venue and only the third Indian to record the rare feat in 50 overs cricket.Asked if the Aussies are struggling to pick Indian spinners, Bhuvneshwar said: “Our bowlers are bowling too well maybe. They score off our spinners in the IPL so they (Australia) can play spin. Our bowlers then are maybe bowling better here and they cannot pick them.”On his evolution as a bowler in recent years, Bhuvneshwar, who is now a regular in the first XI across formats for India and has been performing well, said: “When I started, I used to depend on conditions. Then I started improving as I played more international cricket. The more you play you know the areas you need to improve on. One year after I started playing, I knew I had to increase pace.”advertisement”I had no clue how to do it. Then our trainer came Mr (Shankar) Basu and he changed the training regime. Knowingly or unknowingly, my pace increased and with that my death bowling also improved.”Bhuvneshwar, who scored a match-winning half century in Sri Lanka before this series, said he always possessed batting skill and it was his knock against the Sri Lankans that gave him confidence he can score in ODIs too.”I haven’t tried anything differently. I have natural talent and I know I can bat. Specially when it comes to Tests, I can continue. In ODIs, you have to hit at my position and I don’t have that ability. But in the last three-four matches, the situations I got myself in, 10-15 overs I batted and in Sri Lanka I got the confidence that I can contribute in ODI as well. My batting coach Sanjay Bangar has worked on my batting as well.”last_img read more

Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar not in favour of four-day Test

first_imgSouth Africa skipper Faf du Plessis and batsman Dean Elgar have expressed their disapproval for the four-day Test cricket even though Cricket South Africa (CSA) wants to trial the concept later this year.The South African cricket board has scheduled a four-day Test against Zimbabwe on Boxing Day but is awaiting approval from the International Cricket Council (ICC) for the game.”I am a fan of five-day Test cricket. I believe the great Test matches have gone to the last hour of the last day on day five. That’s what is so special about Test cricket,” Sport24 quoted du Plessis as saying after Proteas defeated Bangladesh in the first Test in Potchefstroom in a match that went to the fifth day.”In four-day cricket or first-class cricket, it does feel easier because there are only four days,” he added.The Proteas skipper further said that players, both batsmen and bowlers, have to graft it out for five days.”Bowlers have to bowl a lot more and batters have to construct much bigger innings,” he insisted.Faf on the concept of a 4-day Test Match. #SAvBAN Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) October 2, 2017Meanwhile, opening batsman Elgar echoed similar sentiments and said that there should be no experimentation with the longest format of the game even though there is concern around the world about the support for Test cricket.”I don’t think you should tinker with something that’s not broken. If you go and play around the world, Test cricket is followed quite well,” said Elgar.advertisementThe left-handed batsman believes Tests do get good enough crowds.”If you play in Australia, if you play in England, even if you play in South Africa against the relatively big nations you still get very good crowds,” he said.”There are other formats that are being experimented with. I don’t see why Test cricket should suffer. I am a purist when it comes to that. Hopefully the game can have longevity in the five-day format,” he added.last_img read more

Jose Mourinho, Conte war of words adds fuel to Manchester United, Chelsea clash

first_imgManchester United and Chelsea are set to take on each other in the Premier League on Sunday and despite it being a vital clash for top-four, the focus is more on Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte spat.Such has been the war of words between them that the clash at Old Trafford has gone far beyond that lush green pitch.The boiling tension between the two big managers began when Conte’s Chelsea thrashed Mourinho’s United 4-0 to kickstart their 2016-17 Premier League title charge. Interestingly, they’ve both won the league title in their first season in England and both with the Blues.This season the discord erupted into open dislike with insults flying backwards and forwards.In October, Mourinho said Conte was the kind of manager who “they cry, they cry, they cry when a player is injured”, while Conte suggested the Portuguese was far too interested in what was going on at the club where he was once worshipped.Mourinho’s comments in January that not “behaving like a clown on the touchline” did not betray a lack of passion appeared to be directed Conte’s way.Even if it were not, Conte took the bait and hit back in no uncertain terms, accusing Mourinho of suffering from amnesia although his original remark, later clarified, spoke of “senile dementia”.Mourinho stoked the fires by dragging up a 2011 match-fixing saga that Conte was implicated in.”I think I will still make a few (mistakes). What never happened to me and will never happen is to be suspended for match-fixing,” Mourinho said.advertisementConte, who always denied any wrongdoing in that affair, was furious and described Mourinho as “a little man with a very low profile” as the bad blood began to boil.So there would appear to be egos as well as points at stake this weekend as United and Chelsea strive to bolster their hopes of finishing in the top-four behind runaway Premier League leaders Manchester City.United and Chelsea are four points and one point respectively above fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, who could ramp up the pressure by winning Sunday’s early kickoff at Crystal Palace.The stakes will already be high enough without any pre-match trash talking as Mourinho will be desperate to avoid a fourth defeat in five matches against Chelsea since taking over at United in 2016.He certainly will not want to hear the chants of “you’re not special any more” from Chelsea’s visiting fans — the same ones who lauded him for winning seven trophies in two spells as the Blues’ manager, including three league titles.Victory, and a first league double over United for eight years, would see Chelsea move level on points with Mourinho’s side, with 10 games of the season remaining.A win for United, however, would leave Chelsea glancing anxiously behind them.”The next game is always the most important because it’s where you can get the three points,” Chelsea defender Cesar Azpilicueta said. “At the moment we are getting closer and closer to the end of the season, so we have to get the points.”Chelsea may reap the benefit of having 24 hours more recovery time from their Champions League exertions, having drawn 1-1 with Barcelona at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.United ground out a 0-0 draw in Sevilla on Wednesday, but will surely be more adventurous against Conte’s side.(Courtesy: Reuters)last_img read more

‘Virat Kohli acted like a clown in South Africa and ICC did nothing about it’

first_imgFormer South African spinner Paul Harris has compared Virat Kohli to a “clown” for his antics during the three-match Test series in South Africa in January.Harris was reacting after pacer Kagiso Rabada’s two-match suspension in the shoulder bump incident during the second Test between South Africa and Australia in Port Elizabeth.Rabada made contact with Australia skipper Steve Smith’s shoulder after dismissing him in the first innings of their six-wicket victory in Port Elizabeth.Rabada was found guilty of “inappropriate and deliberate physical contact with a player” by the International Cricket Council (ICC) and will miss the rest of the four-match series.The 22-year-old Rabada, who took 11 wickets in the match, has appealed the decision.Harris took to Twitter to blame the ICC for not having any uniformity in its rules.In January, Kohli was fined 25 per cent of his match fee for arguing with the umpires during the third day of the second Test against South Africa in Centurion.”If he has to then everyone does. I watched Kohli behave like a clown for three tests here in SA and nothing. Seems to me that @ICC either have an issue with Rabada or with the Proteas in general,” Harris wrote.If he has to then everyone does. I watched Kohli behave like a clown for three tests here in SA and nothing. Seems to me that @ICC either have an issue with Rabada or with the Proteas in general.paul harris (@paulharris12) March 12, 2018However, Harris’ claim is a little strange because apart from an argument with the umpires during the Centurion Test, there was no other issue around the Indian captain, who finished with 871 runs across formats on the tour of South Africa.advertisementThe shoulder bump between Rabada and Smith was not the only incident in the match as the fired-up fast bowler also gave opening batsman David Warner a verbal send-off.In the first Test in Durban, security cameras captured a heated argument between Warner and South Africa wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock after the teams left the field for tea on the fourth day.Warner said the wicketkeeper had made “vile and disgusting” comments about his wife.Warner was fined 75 per cent of his match fee, while de Kock was fined 25 per cent. Both were given demerit points.Rabada was given three demerit points for the shoulder bump in Port Elizabeth, taking him to eight within a two-year period, which triggered an automatic two-match suspension. He was also given another demerit point for the Warner send-off.South Africa’s current captain Faf du Plessis too was confused with the level of charge levied by the ICC on Rabada.Du Plessis questioned why Rabada and Warner were booked by the ICC under the same level of offence when (according to the South African captain), Warner’s move appeared to be more aggressive.”How I understand it is, the charge against KG (Kagiso Rabada) is level two with three demerit points and the charge against Dave (David Warner) was a level two with three demerit points.”For me, if you look at both those incidents, one was brushing of a shirt, the other one is a lot more aggressive. So that was my question that why both these incidents were labelled as exactly the same. Of course for me they are not,” du Plessis told the media.Former England captain Kevin Pietersen also slammed ICC’s decision to ban Rabada.”I’m pretty happy not to be playing Test cricket when you scream a couple times with passion, give a few sends off & then get banned! My baptism into Test cricket in 2005 was a WHOLE lot worse! And, that’s what made it fun, competitive & separated men from boys!” Pietersen expressed on Twitter.Im pretty happy not to be playing Test cricket when you scream a couple times with passion, give a few sends off & then get banned!My baptism into Test cricket in 2005 was a WHOLE lot worse!And, thats what made it fun, competitive & separated men from boys!Kevin Pietersen (@KP24) March 13, 2018The third match starts in Cape Town on March 22.last_img read more

IPL 2018, KKR vs RR: KKR take a step towards play-offs with win over RR

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It’s all true: Sharapova hits back at Serena ‘book 100 percent hearsay’ claim

first_img\R Paris, June 6 (AFP) Maria Sharapova hit back at Serena Williams’s accusations that the Russian’s autobiography was “100 percent hearsay”, insisting Wednesday that controversial references to her arch-rival are accurate. “When you’re writing an autobiography, I don’t think there is any reason to write anything that’s not true,” said Sharapova after being knocked out of Roland Garros by Garbine Muguruza 6-2, 6-1 in the quarter-finals. Sharapova and Williams were due to clash in the fourth round on Monday but the American pulled out at the last minute of their eagerly-awaited grudge match with injury. It would have been the pair’s 22nd meeting. The build-up had been overshadowed by Williams’s criticism of Sharapova’s book ‘Unstoppable’ in which the Russian claimed their feud had started after her 2004 Wimbledon breakthrough triumph. “I think Serena hated me for being the skinny kid who beat her, against all odds, at Wimbledon,” Sharapova wrote. “Not long after I heard Serena told a friend, who then told me, ‘I’ll never lose to that little bitch again’.” Sharapova insisted that the book contains no inaccuracies and defended her many references to Williams who has not lost to the Russian since 2004. “I think it would be strange for me not to include someone that I have competed against for so many years,” said the 31-year-old. “I think there is a lot of autobiographies out in the world, especially in the sporting world, that don’t necessarily speak about whether they were rivals or someone they competed against. “And I think we played many matches. Some of those matches were very defining for me. It would be very strange, I think, if I didn’t write anything about her. I think everyone would ask me questions, as well.”advertisement On Wednesday, Sharapova suffered her heaviest defeat at the Slams since her 6-3, 6-0 battering at the hands of Victoria Azarenka in the 2012 Australian Open final. It was her first quarter-final at the majors since Melbourne in 2016 after which she served a 15-month doping ban. Despite her first loss to Muguruza in their fourth meeting, committing 27 unforced errors and getting broken six times, Sharapova said she saw signs of hope in her form as she builds towards Wimbledon next month. It will be her first appearance at the All England Club in three years. “I think my body will need a little bit of rest, but mentally I’m ready to go,” said five-time major winner Sharapova. “I think there are a lot of good things like the way my body has handled the long matches that I have played, the back-to-backs. “Looking at Madrid, Rome, I think that’s always one of the toughest back-to-backs on the calendar, especially on a surface like clay. So to come out of these weeks and feel fairly healthy is a great thing.” (AFP) ATKATKlast_img read more

CWG star Manika stuns World No. 18 in UTT

first_imgPune, June 17 (PTI) Table tennis sensation Manika Batra today shocked World No. 18 Sofia Polcanova in a thrilling duel to give Dabang Smashers TTC an early lead against Warriors TTC in the Ceat Ultimate Table Tennis (UTT) here today.The sizeable weekend crowd that had turned up at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Balewadi to cheer the CWG star got their moneys worth as the 23-year-old upstaged the Austrian, ranked 62 spots higher 2-1 (11-10, 5-11, 11-10). Two of the three games were decided by the golden point with the 80th-ranked Indian serving on both occasions to squeeze in the winners. She served well and was quite effective with her backhand that earned her five points. In all, she gained 14 points on serve to unsettle her left-handed rival. Manika had won a record four medals at the Gold Coast Games including two gold.Another crowd favourite Sharath Kamal, however, failed to get past Japanese Yoshida Masaki (World No. 27) with the Warriors captain going down 1-2 (11-7, 8-11, 8-11) in a highly entertaining battle that was peppered with long rallies. The 35-year-old Indians loss meant Warriors had lost both their opening singles and Dabang had gained a 4-2 lead on points. PTI BS BSBSlast_img read more

World Cup 2018: How visiting fans are handling language barriers

first_imgFootball is one sport that unites the world. Different people from different countries come together through this sport and celebrate one common spirit.However, overcoming language barriers is not so easy and when it comes to deciphering the Cyrillic alphabet in Russia, it can be extremely tough.Not all locals are well versed with English and so getting directions and understanding them from board signs can be very exhausting.However, the fans have found their way through the problem and who else but Google is helping them.World Cup fans from around the globe having been actively using Google Translate on their mobile phones and it has proved to be their messiah.2018 FIFA WORLD CUP: FULL COVERAGEBeing easily able to translate on phones has saved them from the trouble of frantic search through phrase books or gesturing for directions.The software has proven indispensable for many fans to communicate with locals in bars, restaurants and hotels in the 11 host cities.”It’s very difficult to understand the Cyrillic alphabet in Russian,” said Brazilian fan Gustavo, who travelled more than 12,000 kilometres (7,456 miles) from his native Pocos de Caldas to support his team in Kazan, where they will face Belgium in the quarter-finals on Friday.Also read – World Cup fans explore underground Josef Stalin’s bunker of Nazi era”So we use Google all the time and ask the people what they are trying to serve or to eat. When you use Google and you know the translation, that becomes easier.”Some foreign fans type what they want to say in Russian in their native language and show the translation to locals. Others use the app’s voice function that allows them to virtually speak to people in other languages.advertisementRussians have also been caught up in the craze.Also read – World Cup 2018: Neymar joins Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi in mural club”We were at the souvenir shop in Vladimir and the lady had her computer on so she would type her Russian words and then ask me to look at her screen to read the English translations,” said Trisha, a Filipino tourist visiting Kazan.Although the app can sometimes produce inaccurate or awkward translations, fans say it has significantly enhanced their World Cup experience.”One of our friends wanted to tell the woman in a shop that Russian women were very beautiful,” said Colombian fan Juan David Londono in Samara, where Colombia beat Senegal 1-0 in the group stage last month.”But when Google translated, it said ‘old women are very beautiful’.”Also read – World Cup 2018: Dazzling goals, memorable celebrations and the dance of joySome reporters have also used the tool to circumvent language restrictions imposed at the press opportunities of certain teams.At a news conference with France star Antoine Griezmann last month, a Spanish reporter wanted to ask him about his future at his club, Atletico Madrid.But France media managers had said questions would only be taken in French, a language the reporter did not speak. He got around the restriction by having Google Translate render his question in French.Griezmann laughed and began answering in Spanish while the French team’s spokesman said “next question” and urged the player to remain silent.(With Reuters inputs)last_img read more

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