Sunday, January 27, 2008

Djokovic wins Australian Open

Serb Novak Djokovic atlast realized his dream fo winning a Grand Slam by defeating the unseeded Jo William Tsonga in the final in a thriller. He won the match 4-6 6-4 6-3 7-6 with fight coming from the opponent only in the final set. It was a thorough professional display by the Serb who had earlier defeated No:1 Roger Federer in the semi-final. Djokovic jumped in joy after winning the Grand Slam. Tsonga said that he was not at all disappointed with his effor and said that this match would inspire him a lot in the future.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Sharapova wins Australian Open

Russian Maria Sharapova won her third Grand slam title after she defeated Ana Ivanovic in the final of Australian Open 2008 7-5 6-3. The match was almost an one-sided affair with Sharapova dominating right from the start. After defeating Henin in the semi finals, many thought that Sharapova would easily cruise in the finals and the same happened. She played some good volleys and back hands, her potent weapon with ease to demolish her opponent. She also fired very few errors. Lets wish her all the best in her future tournaments.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Knighthood to Sachin??????????

Cricketing greats from the Commonwealth nations such as Sachin Tendulkar should be considered for traditional British honours like the knighthood, Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said.

Noting that cricket is one of the great things that binds the Commonwealth together, he said there was a time when top cricketers from the countries in the grouping would be recognised by the British people through its honoured system.

"But I believe it was a good tradition to celebrate the achievements of the great Commonwealth cricketers -- it shows we are good sports and I would like to see some of the great players of the modern era -- like Sachin Tendulkar -- proposed for honorary awards -- so the British nation can salute their achievements in one of our national sports," Brown said.

Brown also congratulated India on what he described as its "famous victory" over Australia "so away from home" in the Perth Test match.

Indian ODI Team for Australian Tri-Series announced

BCCI has announced the ODI team which will involve in the tri-series to be played in Australia along with Sri Lanka. Once again, the selection of the team has raised some speculation with the dropping of Sourav Ganguly from the team. Rahul Dravid has not been selected for this tour either. Many youngsters and come backs form the major part of the team which will be led by Dhoni.

The team

  • M S Dhoni(captain)
  • Sachin Tendulkar
  • Virendar Sehwag
  • Gautam Gambhir
  • Yuvraj Singh
  • Rohit Sharma
  • Robin Uthappa
  • Suresh Raina
  • Dinesh Karthik
  • Irfan Pathan
  • Harbhajan Singh
  • Piyush Chawla
  • Sreesanth
  • R P Singh
  • Ishant Sharma
  • Praveen Kumar

Sunday, January 20, 2008

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Saturday, January 19, 2008

India end Australia win streak in Perth

India brought an end to Australia’s 16-match winning streak and any chance they had of setting a new world Test record as India registered victory by 70 runs in Perth. It was Australia’s first defeat at the WACA for 11 years while it was the team’s first loss in Tests since going down to England at Trent Bridge two and a half years ago.

Although India, 2-1 down with one match remaining, have missed their chance of a maiden Test series win having lost the first two matches in Melbourne and Sydney, they could at least emulate their drawn series in Australia of 2003-04. Here, Australia were chasing 413 for victory, which would have been the second-highest run chase in Test history, but they were dismissed for 340.

Their victory charge appeared to end much earlier than it eventually did when on 253-8 but an unbeaten 50 from number nine batsman Mitchell Johnson and 32 from number ten Stuart Clark extended the game somewhat. Michael Clarke top scored with 81, while the wickets were shared though the recalled Irfan Pathan was the pick with his 3-54.

India captain Anil Kumble said afterwards the win was his greatest victory in 18 years of Test cricket, since he made his debut in England in 1990. It would have been all the more satisfying for Kumble after the controversies from the second Test in Sydney.

“The most important thing - after what had happened in Sydney - was to play good cricket. We wanted to show that the Indian cricket team is a good Test unit. Even in Sydney, we put in a good effort but didn't get the result that we wanted. What's heartening is that we've shown that in what's regarded as the home turf for Australia.”

The teams meet next in Adelaide, starting January 24.

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Australia set 413 for world record victory

Australia will need to achieve the second-highest run chase in Test history if they are to win a world record 17th consecutive Test match, against India at Perth.

India stretched out their lead in the second innings and set Australia an imposing 413 to win on Friday evening, with two days of the match still to run so time should not be an issue, more whether Australia’s team of rookie champions can cope with the task facing them.

Australia's task wasn't made any easier when they lost debutant Chris Rogers, caught behind for 15 off left-armer Irfan Pathan, who was extracting prodigious away swing from the left-handers.

A clutch of key players who contributed to their 16-match winning streak are now missing such as the retired Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, Justin Langer and Damien Martyn as well as the injured Matthew Hayden so the new crop will have to take up the challenge. An amazing victory would mean they beat Steve Waugh’s team’s achievement from 1999 to 2001.

Indian batsman VVS Laxman, so often the fly in Australia’s ointment, made 79 to steer India to 294 in their second innings, benefiting from vital partnerships with Mahendra Singh Dhoni (stand of 75) and number ten batsman Rudra Pratap Singh (stand of 51).

The ever-reliable Stuart Clark was the pick of the Australian bowlers with 4-61, while Brett Lee claimed 3-54. India are 2-0 down in the four-match series and are now seeking to emulate the drawn series of 2003-04.

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Madrid out of Copa Del Ray

Real Madrid have crashed out of the Copa Del Ray after a one-nil loss to Real Mallorca. Trailing two-one from the first leg of this last 16 tie, Madrid dominated from the kick-off but failed to take the lead. With seven minutes to go Madrid were stunned as Ariel Ibagaza scored a sublime individual goal. Mallorca sealed a three-one aggregate triumph. They will now play Getafe in the quarter-finals.

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Federer wins epic battle

World No:1 Roger Federer used all his wits and skill to survive one of the toughest battles he would have ever faced in his stupendous career. In the on going Australian Open, another Serbian Janko Tiosarevic almost crushed Federer with his serves and ground play in the 3rd round. Though the Serbian won the first set, Federer came back strongly. But then, the Serbian proved to be tough to take the game into the 5th set. But here, Federer proved to be strong with his solidity and expreience to win the match 10-8.

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Kuznetsova crashes out

Second seed Svetlana Kuznetsova went out of the Australian Open in the third round after a woeful performance against Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska. The Pole held her nerve to win 6-3, 6-4. In another game, Maria Kirilenko of Russia beat compatriot Anna Chakvetadze in the 3rd round. Chakvetadze wrapped up the first set in the tie break, but then ran out of steam in next 2 sets. Kirilenko handed Chakvetadze a 6-7, 6-1, 6-2 defeat and ensure a first-time appearance in the 4th round of a Grand Slam

Friday, January 18, 2008

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Red Bull unveil new car

Red Bull Racing became the latest Formula One team to unveil their new car for the upcoming season. Drivers David Coulthard and Mark Webber rolled out the new RB4 at the Jerez circuit in Spain on Wednesday. The new RB4 has been redisigned to accommodate rule changes laid down by F1's governing body. Red Bull Racing are hoping to improve on their fifth place in the constructors' championship last year.

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Gebrselassie misses world record at Dubai marathon

Haile Gebrselassie, the best long distance runner the world has ever witnessed failed to break his own world record at the Dubai Marathon recently. Despite running at a brisk pace, he was well short of his record which he set in September 2007 in the Grand Prix event. Fans were thoroughly dejected on him not reaching a new milestone in an astonishing career consisting of more than 20 world records.

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Kumble reaches 600 milestone

Anil Kumble, the captain of the Indian cricket team and one of the lone warriors of the game reached yet another milestone in his illustrious career spanning over 17 years. He became only the 3rd bowler in the history of the game to take 600 wickets in Test cricket when he dismissed the danger man Andrew Symonds in the first innings of the Perth Test. This comes amidst all controversies surrounding him that he would not take wickets on foreign soil. Kumble proved it wrong time and again with his lively accuracy tempting the batsmen to play at them and foxing. It will be fitting if India wins the test match as it holds the upper hand in the game.

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Sunday, January 13, 2008

Eto'o scores twice for Barca

Samuel Eto'o, the Cameroon striker scored once again for Barca in the crunch situation to provide 4-0 win for his team over Real Murcia in the Spanish Primera Liga. Though Thierry Henry played beautifully, he could not score a goal and this was really a sad moment for many of their fans. Barcelona are now with 40 points and are closing in their rivals Real Madrid.

Rogers called into the squad

Chris Rogers, the Western Australian opening batsman has been drafted into the Australian squad for the third test in Perth because of an injury to Hayden. Rogers, 30 years old has been on the sidelines for many years but could not find a place in the team. This is a very good opportunity for him if he gets selected but it seems that Hayden is recovering at a rapid pace and this could be a threat to Rogers. If selected, this will be the weakest opening pair for Australia after many decades.

Rough road ahead for Sania

Sania Mirza, the Indian tennis sensation is facing tough time ahead. She may be fit to play this year's tournaments but the legal issues is making her to think a lot which is not good for her career. Recently 2 cases have been filed against her for she has said her apology. Leaving that aside, the Australian Open is about to start tomorrow and the journey is tough. First she faces the Uzbek Iroda Tulyaganova, ranked 317. If the hurdle is cleared, she could play Aussie Sophie Ferguson in the second round. But Venus Williams awaits her in the 3rd round. Sania did not upset any top seed in the Grand Slam and this is not an heartening issue. Lets wish her all the best.

Man U on top

The Red Devils at last scaled the summit. This was done after their 6-0 win over Newcastle helped them to the top of the Championship table. The first half was barren but the second half produced the most goals. Christiano Ronaldo scored his first hat trick with the Devils. Ferguson was really happy with the win and said that this was one of the best matches for him after being the manager.

Force India drivers announced

Force India, the child of Vijay Mallya has announced its 2 drivers for the 2008 F-1 season and also its test driver. None of the Indians feature in the list but Mallya was optimistic that by the next season, one driver from India would race a car. The 2 drivers are Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil. The liquor baron said that he chose the right mix of drivers and the technical staff but clearly indicated that no such miracles will occur in the very first season. A podium finish from this team could be expected by 2010, when the best mechanical parts would be on store. The team will use an F8-VII chassis and custom Ferrari engines for 2008. Mallya also indicated that its not the end of the road for Karthikeyan. Seeing his performances in the A1 GP and his test driving with Williams, he is sure to be back. As for Chandok, he is still on the learning curve.

Bangalore Hi-Fliers wins PHL

It was a one man show from the Hi-fliers as they were clearly the favourites to win the title yesterday. The credit goes to their goal keeper Bharat Chetri who was brilliant under the bars and did not let any goal from the Dynamos who were tipped to win the crown. Hi-fliers depended on team effort were as Dynamos believed in individual brilliance. Halappa, their captain was once again the man to the fore. He was brilliant all through the match and the tournament which allowed him to win the Player of the Tournament. Each of the players, Tushar Khandekar, Len Aiyappa, Sunil, You Hyo Sik all came together which proved costly for the opponents. The 2 goals for the Hi-fliers were scored by Len Aiyappa and You Hyo Sik. Chetri deserves a special mention here. With very few supporters for the Bangalorean team, he provided all the thrust they needed with his athletic brilliance. He allowed just 1 goal, but it was too late for the Dynamos. Deepak Thakur, Rajpal, Inderjit all created opportunities but failed to score the winner. The final quarter was the best of the tournament were all the skills of the players were put to test. The winner took away 40 lakhs while the runner up received 20 lakhs.

Hi-fliers 2-1 Dynamos

Monday, January 7, 2008

Mikhail Youzhny wins the Chennai Open

Mikhail Youzhny wins this year's Chennai Open and also a prize money of almost $69000. He crushed Nadal, the second ranked male in what was a one sided affair. Nadal, at any point of the match was not at his best and felt fatigue after gruelling matches he had played. The semifinal match against Moya would have taken a lot of toll on him. The final lasted for just 57 minutes with Youzhny winning it 6-0 6-1. Nadal could not do anything and he had only 17 winners. Youzhny had a solid serve with volleys firing from his racket with a pin point accuracy. This was the most one sided final in recent times but full credit goes to Youzhny who won his 4th ATP tour title.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Bond to join ICL

Shane Bond, the destructive fast bowler from New Zealand is set to join the rebel ICL, sources say. He has been prone to injuries on a regular basis and so finds it difficult to stay in the team. This has prompted New Zealand Cricket board to start neglecting him and pay him less. Also the lucrative deal from the ICL made Bond to shift the balance. He has been $800,000 per year whether he would play or not whereas IPL offered him only $250,000. Bond has not confirmed this news and said that there are some more terms to be settled before he would sign. If Bond had played cricket without many injuries, he would have become the leading fast bowler in the world by today.

Umpiring defeats India

Australia have won their 16th test in succession. But this test would be remembered for all bad reasons. Australia, right from the first day did not have even the slightest of a chance to win this test with 135 for 6 at a stage. India would have dictated terms in this match but for the umpiring blunders that have started after that. Symonds was given not out 3 times after which he scored 160 not out. But the same thing never happened to India. These people were given out to balls that were flying a kilo meter apart. In the crucial second innings were the Indians desperately forcing out a draw came 2 very bad decisions from the umpires. Both Dravid and Ganguly were not out but were given out. That changed the course of the match and eventually India lost with an over left for the stumps. Also Harbhajan was charged with racist abuse. Australians simply did not play the cricket in the right spirit and still defend their approach. What a shame.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Hingis faces 2 year ban

Martina Hingis, former World Numbe 1, who is again playing tennis after announcing her retirement has been handed with a ban for 2 years following a doping offence. She was tested positive for the banned substance cocaine during last year Wimbeldon championships and was handed the ban by the ITF from October 1st. After this issue, Hingis once again announced her retirement and vowed not to play tennis again. She has 5 grand slams to her credit.

Sachin scores a timely knock

Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar showed his class once again with a knock of purpose when the team needed it. With his century, India has taken the lead against Australia. The lead comes after a string of big partnerships with the tail enders. Sachin has finally broken the jinx of getting out in the nineties after he had done it 7 times last year. The new year has given him great relief and the shots are classy that a banner read "Commit your crimes when Sachin is batting. They go unnoticed because even the Lord is watching". What else explanation can be given to tell about his batting?