Calming words from Stokes helped me in Super Over, says Archer

ENGLAND pacer Jofra Archer said reassuring words from team-mate Ben Stokes helped him to keep his calm in the Super Over of the World Cup final against New Zealand at the iconic Lord’s here. Hosts England lifted their maiden World Cup trophy on Sunday night by defeating New Zealand in the Super Over in the heart-stopping final...

The Good (NZ), The Bad (Rules), and The Lucky (Eng)

NEW Zealand did not lose. England did not win, but they are the World Champions. That is the insanity this game throws up once in a blue moon..

Strycova and Hsieh take women’s doubles title

CZECH Barbora Strycova completed a memorable Wimbledon as she partnered Hsieh Su-wei to the women’s doubles title on Sunday, beating Canada/China duo Gabriela Dabrowski and Xu Yifan 6-2, 6-4...

Vijender extends victory run

Indian boxing star Vijender Singh remained an unstoppable force, clinching a Technical Knockout over the more experienced Mike Snider on his debut in the US professional circuit here...

Hamilton takes record sixth British Grand Prix victory

LEWIS Hamilton made the most of a favourable safety car intervention on Sunday to claim a record sixth British Grand Prix victory at a packed Silverstone...

Djoker has the last laugh

NOVAK Djokovic saved two match points to clinch a fifth Wimbledon title and 16th major on Sunday, shattering Roger Federer’s bid to become the oldest Grand Slam champion in the longest final ever played at the tournament. ..


 By R Kaushik: MANCHESTER NZ pip India by 18 runs to enter final   RAVINDRA Jadeja produced an innings for the ages, a spectacular collection of the cleanest stroke-making on a difficult surface. But not even his breathtaking brilliance could make up for a horror start as New Zealand surged to the final of the World Cup for a second successive edition, with a thrilling 18-run win over India. Matt Henry and Trent Boult had left India in tatters within 19 deliveries of the start ..

‘45 minutes of bad cricket put us out of WC’

 MANCHESTER:  IT WAS unacceptable that 45 minutes of bad cricket resulted in India’s shock exit from the World Cup, lamented captain Virat Kohli after his team suffered a heart-breaking semi-final defeat against New Zealand. MS Dhoni (50) and Ravindra Jadeja (77) then fought back with a superb 116-run partnership for the seventh wicket but the former’s run-out in the penultimate over tilted the game in the favour of the Kiwis. “Always feels disappointed when you play such ..

Federer chalks up 100 not out

 LONDON: Roger Federer chalked up another monumental milestone to reach the Wimbledon semi-finals on Wednesday, recovering to beat Japan’s Kei Nishikori 4-6, 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 and become the first man to record a century of singles wins at any Grand Slam. The eight-times champion thus won his 100th singles match at Wimbledon. Number two seed Federer was so poor in the first set that the eighth-seeded Nishikori may have felt the 37-year-old Swiss’s advancing years had finally caught ..

It’s India’s top-order vs NZ seam

 India’s captain Virat Kohli addresses media representatives during a press conference at Old Trafford in Manchester, north-west England on Monday, ahead of their 2019 Cricket World Cup semi-final match against New Zealand. (More reports on page 13) (AFP/ Dibyangshu Sarkar)  MANCHESTER;  INDIA TAKE ON KIWIS IN 1ST SEMIS TODAY  IT HAS been a dream World Cup campaign for Virat Kohli’s men and now everything boils down to having two perfect days. The ..

Peru stun champions Chile to enter final

 Porto Alegre (Brazil): Peru stunned defending champions Chile 3-0 to reach the final of the Copa America for the first time in 44 years. Goals from Edison Flores, Yoshimar Yotun and Paolo Guerrero handed Peru a deserved win which sends them into a final against Brazil at the Maracana Stadium on Sunday. The stunning upset prevented Chile’s golden generation from challenging for a third straight title, following their wins over Argentina in 2015 and 2016. Instead the finalists from ..

Pak’s performance is not bad at all, says Moin

 KARACHI:  FACING the ire of critics and fans alike, the Pakistan cricket team found an ally in former captain Moin Khan, who believes the 1992 champions did not have a disastrous World Cup campaign despite standing on the verge of ouster. Pakistan’s hopes of sealing a semi-final berth were trampled when arch-rivals India and New Zealand lost to England, leaving the road to the knockout stage for Sarfaraz Ahmed and his men just an improbable mathematical calculation. They will take ..

Vijay Shankar out of WC due to injury, Agarwal set to join team

 Vijay Shankar                                                                                          Mayank Agarwal  BIRMINGHAM: INDIAN all-rounder Vijay Shankar was Monday ruled out of the ongoing World Cup due to a toe injury and will be replaced ..

Ousted Proteas push Lanka to the edge

 FORMER champions Sri Lanka are all but out of the ongoing World Cup after suffering a nine-wicket drubbing against a clinical South Africa, here Friday. Sent in to bat, Sri Lanka produced a dismal batting show to manage a modest 203, a target which the Proteas overhauled with 76 balls in hand.  With just six points from seven games, Sri Lanka still have a mathematical chance to be in the semi-finals. First, they need to win their last two games against already-eliminated West Indies ..

Australia begin as favourites against New Zealand

 PEAKING at the right time, Australia will resume their Trans-Tasman rivalry at the World Cup stage when they take on a New Zealand side low on confidence after its first defeat of the tournament, here Saturday. Barring the defeat against India, defending champions Australia have done nothing wrong in this tournament, becoming the first team to qualify for the semi-finals.  The Aaron Finch-led side is in roaring form and would look to continue the winning momentum at the hallowed Lord’..

Ganguly backs under fire Dhoni citing his ability, experience

 FORMER India skipper Saurav Ganguly has thrown his weight behind under-fire Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who is facing criticism for his slow-paced knocks in the ongoing World Cup, saying the stumper would definitely succeed due to his experience and ability.  Dhoni initially found the going tough before getting 16 runs in the final over to finish unbeaten on 56 off 61 deliveries and take India to 268 for seven against the West Indies at Manchester Thursday. India won the game by 125 runs. ..

It’s more than just wins and losses in leadership role: Finch

 SOME are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them. Such is the eternal universality of Shakespeare’s insights that Malvolio’s musings in Twelfth Night could easily apply to the Australian captaincy instead.  If that was the case then Aaron Finch would certainly fall into the third of those categories. Incidentally, Malvolio’s preceding line is “be not afraid of greatness” and that neatly epitomises Finch’s attitude ..

Jason hopes to play alongside Starc more often

 LONDON: JASON Behrendorff doesn’t seen an issue if left-arm pacers like him and Mitchell Starc feature in the Australian playing eleven more often, especially after the duo’s match winning performances against England in the World Cup here on Tuesday. Behrendorff was brought into the side for just his eighth ODI due to England’s historic struggles against left-arm pacemen and that decision proved a masterstroke at Lord’s. The 29-year-old took his maiden international ..

Being compared to fat pig hurts: Sarfaraz

 BIRMINGHAM:  PAKISTAN captain Sarfaraz Ahmed says incidents like the one in which he was compared to a “pig” by a fan are hurtful but there is nothing he can do to prevent them and can only plead for civility in criticism. Pakistani fans have severely criticised the national team after its 89-run loss to arch-rivals India in a World Cup encounter in Manchester.   In a recent video that went viral on social media, Sarfaraz, walking in a mall in England with his son, ..

Cricketers remember India’s maiden, stupendous World Cup win of 1983

 NEW DELHI: KAPIL DEV-led Indian team’s stupendous World Cup win on June 25, 1983, is till date looked at as a revolutionary tale. The Indian team had defeated an invincible West Indies in the finals to lift the World Cup trophy for the first time. After the win, cricket got a fillip in the country, elevating the sport to a religion for fans with every child wanting to become a cricketer. Many cricketers, who are now viewed as some of the greatest ones to have played for India, also ..

Wimbledon seeding system disrespects world rankings: Nadal

 RAFAEL Nadal has complained about Wimbledon’s seeding system after the Spaniard was placed at number three, behind Roger Federer, for next week’s Grand Slam in London. “Wimbledon is the only tournament of the year that does it like this,” Nadal told Spanish television channel Movistar on Monday night. “Obviously it would be better to be two than three but if they think I have to be three I will accept three and fight to win the matches I have to win. “Having ..

Naib slams his side for sloppy fielding

 SOUTHAMPTON:  AFGHANISTAN captain Gulbadin Naib slammed his side's sloppy fielding in their 62-run World Cup defeat against Bangladesh on Monday. Naib's men were guilty of a series of errors- - dropping catches and committing careless misfields -- as Bangladesh scored 262-7 in Southampton. Those blunders were worth an extra 35 runs according to the disgruntled Naib, who defended his decision to bowl first after winning the toss. “I'm happy with the toss, but if you look at the ..

Holder dares Carlos to repeat ton act

 MANCHESTER: WEST Indies captain Jason Holder urged Carlos Brathwaite to “bring it together more often” after his remarkable hundred so nearly led to a stunning World Cup victory over New Zealand. The West Indies were down and out at 164-7, chasing a target of 292 to beat the Black Caps at Old Trafford. Thanks to Brathwaite’s blistering 101 of 82 balls — his maiden one-day international century — however, they got to within a six of a win with just one wicket ..

Brathwaite to take confidence from bitter-sweet ton

 MANCHESTER: CARLOS Brathwaite Saturday said he will take confidence from his valiant 101 that took West Indies close to victory only to lose the World Cup thriller by five runs against New Zealand. Brathwaite set up an exciting game with his 82-ball blitz after West Indies slipped to 245 for nine in their chase of 292 at Manchester’s Old Trafford. He smashed five sixes and nine fours for his maiden ODI ton, but fell to paceman Jimmy Neesham in trying to get the winning hit in the ..

Barty is world’s best in tennis

 Birmingham: Ashleigh Barty said it was in “another realm” to become only the second Australian woman to top the world rankings when she won the Birmingham WTA title on Sunday, beating Julia Goerges 6-3, 7-5. The 23-year-old French Open champion emulates Yvonne Goolagong Cawley — like her an indigenous Australian — who held it for a fortnight in 1976. Barty — the first Australian to win the French Open since Margaret Court in 1973 — displaces Japan’s ..

Never thought I could play a knock like that: Morgan

 MANCHESTER ENGLAND skipper Eoin Morgan, who smashed a world record 17 sixes in his side’s 150-run crushing of Afghanistan in a World Cup game, said he never thought a knock like that could come from his bat. Morgan blasted an incredible 17 sixes — the most in ODI history — during his game-changing knock of 148 at Old Trafford Tuesday, breaking the previous record of 16 held jointly by AB de Villiers, Chris Gayle and Rohit Sharma. His knock helped England post 397/6 — ..

Marta puts Brazil in top-16 of FIFA women’s World Cup

Valenciennes: Marta said she was representing women in football after becoming the leading scorer in the history of the men’s and women’s World Cups by firing home the penalty that downed Italy and secured Brazil’s place in the last 16 of this year’s tournament in France.  Australia beat Jamaica 4-1. The 33-year-old, widely considered the best player in the history of the women’s game, slammed home from the spot in the 74th minute against Group C winners Italy ..

Finch’s secret: Change in mindset

 LONDON: AARON Finch says it was a slight change in mindset and technique that helped him overcome a dismal Australian summer that even raised questions over his place in the ODI side, both as player and captain. The Australian skipper is now back to his best and bludgeoned 153 from only 132 balls at the Oval on Saturday to lead the defending champions to an 87-run win over Sri Lanka. He is now the top run scorer in the World Cup, has equalled Jason Roy for the highest individual score of ..

Buttler ready to step into Morgan’s shoes if needed

 SOUTHAMPTON: JOS Buttler says he is ready to step up and captain England in the World Cup if injured skipper Eoin Morgan fails to recover in time to face Afghanistan on Tuesday. Morgan had to leave the field with a back spasm during the West Indies innings in Southampton on Friday, with opening batsman Jason Roy also forced off the field due to a tight hamstring.  Vice-captain Buttler himself was unable to keep wicket in the team’s previous match against Bangladesh but said he ..

India beat Pak in WC again

 MANCHESTER:  Rohit, Kuldeep ensure India drub Pakistan once again; stretch record to 7-0 in World Cup   ROHIT Sharma produced an elegant hundred before Kuldeep Yadav flummoxed the Pakistani batsmen as India inflicted a humiliating 89-run defeat on their arch-rivals in a much-hyped World Cup match, which eventually turned to be a lop-sided affair. Chasing a stiff 337-run target, Pakistan were already down and out when rain stopped play after 35 overs.  They had managed just ..

Pant flown in as cover for Dhawan

  By R KaushikRISHABH Pant, the left-handed middle-order batsman, will arrive in England in the next couple of days to join the Indian team as cover for the injured Shikhar Dhawan. Dhawan, who sustained a fracture in his left hand during his century against Australia at The Oval on Sunday, faces a spell on the sidelines with Sanjay Bangar, the assistant coach, saying his condition will be assessed 10-12 days hence. Just for the record, Dhawan has not yet been ruled out of the tournament, ..

Nadal claims record-stretching 12th title

 Paris: Rafael Nadal swept to an historic 12th Roland Garros title and 18th Grand Slam crown on Sunday with a 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 victory over Austria’s Dominic Thiem. The 33-year-old Spaniard becomes the first player, man or woman, to win the same Slam 12 times after seeing off a brave challenge from a weary Thiem in a repeat of the 2018 final. Nadal is now just two behind Roger Federer’s all-time record of 20 majors and three ahead of Novak Djokovic who was knocked out by Thiem ..

Shakib happy with promotion

 CARDIFF: STAR Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan says he is relishing his promotion to number three in the batting order, having scored three half-centuries and a hundred in his last four ODIs. Shakib, who also opened the bowling against England here on Saturday, said he had to convince everyone else in the squad he was worthy of the batting promotion.  “Yeah, (I needed to convince) everyone. Because if I don’t score runs in a single match, they would think he should ..

Temperament is key to Roy’s strength, enthuses Morgan

 CARDIFF: ENGLAND captain Eoin Morgan feels a significant improvement in temperament has led opener Jason Roy to stellar success in the last two years. Roy smashed his sixth ODI century in the last 18 months to get England back to winning ways in the World Cup here on Saturday. After a player of the series effort in the warm-up ODI series against Pakistan, Roy is in a rich vein of form that contrasts markedly with his efforts two years ago in the Champions Trophy.  Out of form and, ..

We need to address soft dismissals, urges Kiwis captain Williamson

  LONDON: CAPTAIN Kane Williamson urged his batsmen to play more responsibly after a string of soft dismissals pushed New Zealand on the brink of defeat against Bangladesh. The Kiwis though got their act together to eke out a two-wicket victory. Opting to field, the Black Caps bowled beautifully to restrict Bangladesh to 244 in 49.2 overs at the Kennington Oval. While chasing, New Zealand lost two early wickets but looked comfortable at 160 for two. However, the wickets of Williamson ..

Mortaza comes out in defence of Mushfiqur’s run-out gaffe

 LONDON: BANGLADESH skipper Mashrafe Mortaza came out in defence of wicket-keeper Mushfiqur Rahim following his run-out blunder during their World Cup match against New Zealand here. The incident happened in the 12th over when Mushfiqur dislodged the bails with his elbow while trying to run out New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson, who went on to share a crucial 105-run stand for the third wicket with Ross Taylor. The partnership set the tone as New Zealand chased down Bangladesh’s ..

Thiem to take on Djokovic in SF

 PARIS: A fresh face will win the women’s title at the French Open after champion Simona Halep crashed out to fast-rising teenager Amanda Anisimova on Thursday, but it was business as usual on the men’s side as Novak Djokovic and Dominic Thiem raced though. America’s Anisimova dazzled in a crushing 6-2 6-4 win over third seed Halep, who was looking to become the first woman to retain the title since Justine Henin’s three consecutive triumphs from 2005-07. Instead, ..

‘Love guys like Kohli, he has what I had’

It is not often that stalwarts like Vivian Richards comes out and praises you. But such is the pedestal that India skipper Virat Kohli has reached that Richards not only shut critics who have questioned Kohli’s attitude, but also said that Kohli reminds him of his own game. “I love guys like that. People talk about arrogance but it is about believing in yourself. It is like having the keys to your home, Virat has something similar now (know all the entry and exits)...

Mortaza praises team after emphatic victory

Bangladesh skipper Mashrafe Mortaza heaped praises on his team’s all-round performance which saw them defeat South Africa by 21 runs in their World Cup tie at the Kennington Oval on Sunday. “The first match always sets the tone. We have been positive, won in Ireland and the momentum helped us set the tone here,” said Mortaza at the post-match presentation ceremony. A wonderful batting display led by the experienced duo of Shakib Al Hasan (75) and Mushfiqur Rahim (78), supported by eye-catching cameos ..

Djokovic nearing Laver’s Grand Slam mark

Novak Djokovic on Monday became the first man to reach the French Open quarter-finals for 10 successive seasons while Kei Nishikori set-up the toughest challenge on a clay court — facing Rafael Nadal. Top seed and world number one Djokovic continued his bid to hold all four..

Be ready for chin music: Coulter-Nile to Windies

 BRISTOL: AUSTRALIA has warned Chris Gayle and company to be ready for for ‘chin music’ when it takes on West Indies in its second ICC World Cup game at Trent Bridge, Nottingham on Thursday. Australia pacer Nathan Coulter-Nile said they are ready to give West Indies a taste of its own medicine — bouncers — to keep Gayle and company in check.  “You’ve got to give it (bowl bouncers) to the Windies, otherwise they just get on the front foot and pogo ..

Wanna win Warner wins again

 BRISTOL:  AUSTRALIA’S David Warner showed little of his menacing hitting and brash in-your-face approach as he made his return to the international arena at the World Cup on Saturday. But he has evidently lost none of his match-winning form. The 32-year-old was back for a first official ODI outing after a year-long ban and produced a performance that appeared almost contrite yet highly effective as Australia began the defence of their World Cup crown with an easy seven-wicket victory ..

Sofia thwarts Serena’s progress; Federer, Nadal enter quarters

 PARIS: Roger Federer made short work of Argentinian Leonardo Mayer to become the oldest man in 28 years to reach a Grand Slam quarter-final at the French Open on Sunday, while Rafael Nadal claimed his 90th Roland Garros win. The 37-year-old Federer, playing at Roland Garros for the first time since 2015, claimed a 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 win over world number 68 Mayer in a sweltering 32 degrees. Reigning champion Nadal continued his bid for a record-extending 12th Roland Garros title by beating Grand ..

Sachin to watch keenly Warner, Rashid, Archer

 London: Sachin Tendulkar will be rooting for Indian victory but at the same time would keep a keen eye on David Warner, Rashid Khan and Jofra Archer, the players who can be potential ‘Game Changers’ in the six World Cup weeks. Tendulkar’s suggestion for the Afghan star Rashid Khan is to “set attacking fields” and treat the 50-over game like a “Test match”, challenging the opposition batsmen regularly. “I think he’s (Rashid) going to ..

Osaka survives, Djokovic and Serena stroll on

 Paris: Naomi Osaka staged a second successive Roland Garros great escape on Thursday as fellow top seed Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams strolled into the last 32. World number one Osaka, bidding to add the French Open to her US and Australian Open titles, came back from a set and 2-4 down to defeat former world number one Victoria Azarenka 4-6, 7-5, 6-3. Her win came on the back of being just two points from defeat in her tournament opener against Anna Karolina Schmiedlova.  Siniakova, ..

Time for Tottenham to be brave

 Madrid: Mauricio Pochettino used to wince when his pressing game was compared with Jurgen Klopp’s but Tottenham and Liverpool share more than just a love of the chase in their recent fight to join Europe’s elite. With star players sold and the proceeds, largely, squandered, Pochettino and Klopp were each tasked with restoring a sense of direction to clubs clearly wandering off course. Only this year have Liverpool soared ahead, their 26-point advantage over Spurs in the Premier ..

It’s ‘coming home’?

 NEW DELHI:  History beckons England  A BUNCH of once-in-a-generation specialists, armed with a new cricketing philosophy, would strive to translate hopes into result for hosts England, in what is deemed their best chance to win a maiden ODI World Cup title. Cricket is no longer the top sport in game’s original home but the declining popularity could get a much-needed fillip if Eoin Morgan stands with the trophy on the Lord’s balcony on July 14. There was a sea-change ..

Nadal, Djokovic cruise through

 PARIS: DEFENDING champion Rafael Nadal got his bid for a record-extending 12th French Open title off to the perfect start by brushing aside German qualifier Yannick Hanfmann, while world number one Novak Djokovic was also a comfortable victor in the first round at Roland Garros on Monday. Nadal, a 17-time Grand Slam champion, cruised to a 6-2, 6-1, 6-3 victory on the rebuilt Court Philippe Chatrier to set up a clash with another German qualifier — world number 114 Yannick Maden —in ..

Rahi books Oly quota, Saurabh sets new record

 NEW DELHI;  RAHI Sarnobat Monday booked an Olympic quota place for India with a gold in women’s 25m pistol event but it was teenager Saurabh Chaudhary who stole the limelight by setting a new world record en route to a yellow metal at the season’s third ISSF World Cup in Munich.  Saurabh bagged his second World Cup gold of the year in men’s 10m Air Pistol event, shattering both the senior and junior world records in the process. India now top the Munich World Cup ..

Hamilton wins Monaco GP to extend championship lead

 MONACO: LEWIS Hamilton resisted intense race-long pressure on Sunday to secure a narrow, dramatic and emotional victory for a mourning Mercedes in the Monaco Grand Prix. The defending five-time world champion and current series leader, who came home less than a second ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, said he survived the Dutchman’s late attacks by “fighting with the spirit of Niki (Lauda)”. He lifted his red helmet in tribute to the three-time champion Austrian ..

‘On edge’ Federer marks Paris return with win

 PARIS: ROGER Federer marked his return to Roland Garros after a four-year absence with a straight sets win over Italy’s Lorenzo Sonego on Sunday, admitting he “felt on edge”, as Angelique Kerber’s hopes of completing a career Grand Slam suffered a quick kill. Federer, a 20-time major winner, hadn’t played the tournament since 2015 when he reached the quarter-finals. However, on Sunday, it was as if the 37-year-old had never been away as he swept to a 6-2, 6-4, ..

Easwaran, Amolpreet put India ‘A’ in command vs SL

 BELAGAVI ABHIMANYU Easwaran’s double ton and Amolpreet Singh’s century helped India ‘A’ post an imposing 622 for five declared against Sri Lanka ‘A’ in the first unofficial Test here Sunday. At stumps on Day Two, Sri Lanka ‘A’ were in deep trouble at 83 for four, trailing India ‘A’ by 539 runs, with Ashan Priyanjan and Niroshan Dickwella batting on 22 runs each. In reply to the hosts’ mammoth total, Sri Lanka ‘A’ ..

Juventus are champs

  Turin (Italy) Juventus lifted the Italian Champion’s trophy at the Allianz stadium in Turin moments after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Atlanta late Sunday night. The pool toppers, enjoying a points tally of 90 have merely one match to play next week and are beyond doubt the champions with Napoli their nearest competitors being at 79 and in no position to surpass them, also having only their last match to play next week. Juve’s opponents of Sunday’s match, Atalanta, ..

Koepka wins his 4th major title

 Bethpage (US): Brooks Koepka held off a late charge from Dustin Johnson to capture his second consecutive PGA Championship on Sunday, completing a wire-to-wire victory for his fourth major title in nerve-wracking fashion. A near-collapse saw Koepka’s record seven-stroke lead reduced to a single shot, but he withstood making four bogeys in a row on the back nine and another at 17 for an unexpectedly narrow triumph. “This is probably the most satisfied I’ve been with all ..

Confident Indians beat Korea

 Jincheon (Republic of Korea) A determined Indian Women’s Hockey Team overcame the challenge posed by hosts Republic Of Korea as they beat them 2-1 in their opening match here at the three-match Bi-lateral Series which began today at Jincheon, Republic Of Korea. The team backed by good results in their previous tournaments in Spain and Malaysia earlier this year exhibited confidence as they made a strong start against the hosts. After missing out on an opportunity to score through ..

Messi consolidates goal haul

 EIBAR: Barcelona captain and La Liga top scorer Lionel Messi rounded off a spectacular season by netting twice in a 2-2 draw away to Eibar in the champions’ final game on Sunday, taking his tally to a remarkable 36 league goals. Eibar went ahead in the 20th minute with a strike from Barca’s on-loan midfielder Marc Cucurella which squirmed under keeper Jasper Cillessen but Messi levelled in the 31st after sneaking into the box to meet a pass from Arturo Vidal.  Messi struck ..

Nadal, Pliskova prove their caliber

  ROME Rafael Nadal won a record 34th ATP Masters 1000 title with a 6-0 4-6 6-1 victory over Novak Djokovic in the Italian Open final on Sunday. The Spaniard, who had shared the record of 33 Masters titles with the Serbian world number one, warmed up for the defence of his French Open crown by securing his ninth Rome title.  Nadal got off to a flying start by whitewashing a shellshocked Djokovic in the opening set. It was the first time there has been a 6-0 set during a meeting ..

Mah bow out of contention

 By Mukund Dhus: COIMBATORE Maharashtra’s boys and girls crashed out of contention in the ongoing 36th Youth National Basketball Championship in progress at Coimbatore. Weary looking boys were thrashed by Chandigarh 54-95 in the pre-quarterfinals while girls were beaten by holders Punjab 50-71 in the quarter-finals. In a totally one sided affair Chandigarh boys dominated overall in the game.  Last year’s runners-up, Maharashtra gave a fight in the first quarter but ..

Tiger, Koepka prowling greater major glory

 Bethpage (United States); Masters winner Tiger Woods, chasing a 16th major title, and defending champion Brooks Koepka lead a powerhouse field into Thursday’s opening round of the PGA Championship at rain-drenched Bethpage Black. Woods, who ended an 11-year major title drought last month at Augusta National, and Koepka, who held off Woods to win last year’s PGA crown, join reigning British Open champion Francesco Molinari of Italy in the feature group of the first two days. ..

Griezmann exit leaves Atletico lost

 Madrid; Antoine Griezmann's decision to leave Atletico Madrid has plunged the club into chaos and fired the starting gun for a summer scramble among Europe's elite. Top scorer in each of his five seasons, Griezmann was the stardust of Atleti, offering spontaneity and craft in a team renowned for discipline and grit. But he grafted too, which is why he was the perfect fit. Griezmann would run and chase as much as he passed and shot, his willingness perhaps exceptional for one of the world’s ..

Guardiola bags Manager of the Year award

 London; Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola edged out Jurgen Klopp to a trophy for the second time in three days as the Catalan claimed the League Managers’ Association manager of the year. Guardiola’s City retained the Premier League title on Sunday, beating Klopp’s Liverpool by a single point at the end of a thrilling title race.  Having also won the League Cup earlier in the campaign, Guardiola’s side could complete a first ever domestic treble in English ..

Tiger sued over restaurant staffer’s death: Report

 Bethpage (US): Tiger Woods faces a lawsuit from the parents of a staffer at his Florida restaurant who died in a drink driving accident after allegedly being overserved alcohol, TMZ reported. The parents of Nicholas Immesberger, who died last December at age 24, filed the lawsuit saying their son had worked as a bartender at The Woods in Jupiter, Florida, and knew the golf star personally, the celebrity website reported. The news broke hours after Woods played his opening practice round ..

Inter on the brink of CL spot

 Rome: Matteo Politano and Ivan Perisic scored in either half as Inter Milan reclaimed third spot in Serie A with a 2-0 win over already-relegated Chievo to close in on Champions League football next season. Politano opened after 39 minutes in the San Siro with Perisic adding the second four minutes from time, as Chievo played the last fifteen minutes a man down after Nicola Rigoni was sent off for a second yellow card on Monday. Inter move back one point ahead of Atalanta as both teams ..

Mary Kom to compete in India Open

 New Delhi: With Olympic qualification round the corner, the second edition of the India Open Boxing Tournament kicks-off with 35 men and 37 women boxers from India vying for glory as close to 200 pugilists from 16 boxing powerhouses will participate in this tournament to be held at the Karmabir Nabin Chandra Bordoloi Indoor Stadium in Guwahati, Assam from May 20-24. The $70,000 tournament will see London Olympic bronze medallist Mary Kom making her competitive debut at home in the 51 kg ..

Lucas Spurs Ajax’s heart

 Amsterdam; Lucas Moura’s last-gasp strike took Tottenham Hotspur to the Champions League final for the first time in their history on Wednesday, completing his hat-trick and sealing an incredible 3-2 win over Ajax to leave the Dutch side heartbroken. Ajax’s improbable European run seemed set to go on all the way to the final as they led 3-2 on aggregate deep in stoppage time in the second leg of the semi-final at the Johan Cruyff Arena. That was when the ball broke to Lucas ..

Heart, fight helps Spurs meet Liverpool in final

  AMSTERDAM: Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Christian Eriksen said they threw tactics out the window and relied on grit and heart to come back from 3-0 down on aggregate to beat Ajax Amsterdam on away goals and reach the Champions League final on Wednesday. Having lost the first leg in London 1-0, Tottenham got off to the worst possible start in Amsterdam by going 2-0 down on the night. The second leg turned on its head after halftime, however, as Lucas Moura scored twice in quick succession ..

Chikte’s ban reduced, can don India colours again

  By Paritosh Pramanik: NAGPUR INDIAN goalkeeper Akash Chikte, who was suspended by Hockey India for a dope violation, is a relieved man. He was banned for two years by National Anti Doping (NADA) for inadvertently taking banned substance in February 2018. After appealing the decision, the anti-doping panel, on Thursday reduced the ban to 13 months. The star India goalkeeper, who works with BEG Pune, had contested the duration of the ban as he claimed that he took the banned substance ..

Heena recommended for Khel Ratna, Ronak for Dronacharya

  New Delhi: The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) has recommended the names of Heena Sidhu and Ankur Mittal for the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award. Asian Games bronze medallist Heena, in 2013, became the first Indian pistol shooter to win a gold medal in an ISSF World Cup finals when she won the 10m Air Pistol event.  The 29-year-old has also won a silver medal in the women’s 10m Air Pistol event, and a gold medal in the women’s 25m Air Pistol event. ..

Saina eyeing second top spot of the season

   Auckland: Saina Nehwal will be keen to put behind the disappointment of losing in the quarter-finals of just-concluded Asia Badminton Championship and train her eyes on winning the New Zealand Open beginning here Tuesday. The 29-year-old from Hyderabad, seeded second, will begin her quest for the second title this year when she will take on China’s Wang Zhiyi in the first round of the women’s singles.   World no. 9 is the only Indian to have won a title ..

Vinesh, Bajrang recommended for Khel Ratna Award

 New Delhi: The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) has recommended the names of Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat for the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award. Current number one wrestler Punia recently stamped his authority on Asia after he won the Asian Wrestling Champion-ships in Xi’an, China. Punia had last year won the gold medal in the 65-kg freestyle wrestling event at the Asian Games held in Jakarta. He defeated Japanese wrestler Takatani Daichi 11-8. Before that, he had also won the ..

City return to top-slot again

   Burnley: Manchester City remain in control of the Premier League title race as the finest of margins earned Pep Guardiola’s men a 1-0 win at Burnley on Sunday. Sergio Aguero’s 31st goal of the season crossed the line by millimetres before being hacked clear by Matthew Lowton, but goal-line technology awarded the goal and kept City a point clear of Liverpool with two games left for both sides to play. For the first time in months, City’s elimination from the ..

Kenyans Eliud, Brigid are victors

  London:  More than 40,000 people participated in the 39th London Marathon on Sunday, with many runner targeting over 80 Guinness World Records. Tennis ace Andy Murray fired the starting gun at this year’s event as the participants descended on the British capital for the race, the BBC reported. The marathon has raised 1 billion pounds since it started in 1981, according to race sponsors Virgin Money. Event director Hugh Brasher said: “No other mass participation event ..

Grappler Harpreet bags Asian silver

   Xi’an (China): India wrapped up their campaign at the Asian Wrestling Championships on a resounding note with 16 medals after Greco-Roman grapplers added a silver and a bronze on the concluding day here on Sunday. Harpreet Singh settled for a silver in 82kg while Gyanender won a bronze in 60kg on the final day of competitions. India’s overall tally of 16 medals included eight — one gold, three silver and four bronze — won by men’s freestyle wrestlers, ..

Messi rested as win over Alaves edges Barca closer to the title

  Barcelona;  Barcelona will win La Liga on Wednesday if Atletico Madrid lose to Valencia after a 2-0 victory over Alaves gave them a 12-point lead at the top of the table. Lionel Messi started on the bench at Mendizorrotza on Tuesday in a move that made clear just how comfortable Barca are in this title race, its conclusion surely now only a matter of when rather than if. Should Atletico avoid defeat to Valencia at the Wanda Metropolitano, the Catalans will still be crowned champions ..

Sindhu moves up, Srikanth falls

  Wuhan (China): Ace India shuttlers Saina Nehwal, P.V. Sindhu and Sameer Verma registered victories in their first round matches on Wednesday to advance to the pre-quarterfinal Badminton Asian Championship. However, it was the end of the road for Kidambi Srikanth who made an early exit. Rio Olympics’ silver medallist Sindhu defeated World No 13 Sayaka Takahashi of Japan in straight games and will face Choirunnisa of Indonesia in the next round. Sindhu knocked out her opponent ..

Nadal drops set before advancing to top-16

  BARCELONA (Reuters): World number two Rafa Nadal dropped a set at the Barcelona Open for the first time in four years before advancing to the last 16, beating Argentine Leonardo Mayer 6-7(7), 6-4, 6-2 on Wednesday. The Spaniard surrendered a 5-3 lead in the first set and then spurned two set points in the tiebreak, which Mayer, ranked 63 in the world, edged thanks to an impressive crosscourt forehand winner. Nadal, who has won the Barcelona Open a record 11 times, had not lost a set ..

Chelsea up to fourth after frustrating Burnley draw

  LONDON: CHELSEA accused Burnley of time-wasting and playing “anti-football” after Blues boss Maurizio Sarri was sent off before a touchline skirmish marred their frustrating 2-2 draw on Monday. Sarri’s side fell behind to Jeff Hendrick’s fine finish before N’Golo Kante equalised moments later. In a frantic opening 24 minutes at Stamford Bridge, Gonzalo Higuain put Chelsea ahead, only for Burnley’s Ashley Barnes to punish more dismal defending from ..

Shiva assured of 4th straight medal

   BANGKOK:  SHIVA Thapa (60kg) secured himself an unprecedented fourth successive medal, while veteran L Sarita Devi (60kg) made the semifinals for the first time in nearly a decade to continue India’s stupendous run at the Asian Boxing Championships here on Tuesday. In all, eight Indian boxers -- four women and four men -- advanced to the medal rounds on day two of quarterfinals. The 25-year-old Thapa defeated Thailand’s Rujakran Juntrong in a one-sided lightweight ..

Sindhu, Saina look to ending 54-year-old title wait

  WUHAN (China):  A WEEK’S rest after three back-to-back tournaments, Olympic medallists PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal will now train their eyes on ending India’s 54-year-old title jinx at the Asia Badminton Championship beginning here Wednesday. It was Dinesh Khanna, who had become the men’s singles champion at the Asian Championship in 1965. Last year, HS Prannoy and Saina Nehwal won bronze medals in their respective categories.  The two-time Commonwealth ..

Neymar returns as Mbappe flattens Monaco in title party

   Paris:  Neymar joined the Paris Saint-Germain title party on Sunday when he made his first appearance since January as Kylian Mbappe swept aside Monaco with a hat-trick in a 3-1 win for the newly-crowned Ligue 1 champions. Mbappe took his league tally for the season to 30 following his treble, which came just hours after PSG were crowned champions for the sixth time in seven years when closest challengers Lille dropped points. Neymar’s return at the start of the second ..

Bisht stuns world champ Yeraliyev; Panghal ensures podium finish

   Bangkok; Kavinder Singh Bisht (56kg) upstaged reigning world champion Kairat Yeraliyev, while Amit Panghal (52kg) edged past familiar foe and Olympic champion Hasanboy Dusmatov, assuring themselves of medals at the Asian Boxing Championships here Monday. In the women’s draw, world silver-medallist Sonia Chahal (57kg) advanced to the last-four stage at the continental showpiece. Bisht clinched a split verdict over Yeraliyev, who hails from Kazakhstan, in a high-intensity contest ..

Athletes Gomathi, Toor star for India bagging a gold medal each

   Doha;  Unheralded half miler Gomathi Marimuthu and shot putter Tejinderpal Singh Toor clinched a gold each to share the limelight as India bagged five medals on the second day of the Asian Athletics Championships here Monday. The 30-year-old Gomathi clocked a personal best time of 2 minute 02.70 seconds in the women's 800m race to open India's gold account. "I did not realise till I crossed the finish line that I have won a gold medal. The last 150m was very tight race," ..

Juve eyeing 8th Serie A title

Juventus turn the page on yet another Champions League disappointment as they focus on sealing an eighth consecutive Serie A title at home on Saturday. Massimiliano Allegri’s side host Fiorentina needing just one more point to lift the Scudetto for a 35th time, days after a shock 2-1 defeat (3-2 on aggregate) to Ajax. The Turin giants have won the Scudetto more than any other team in Italy with AC Milan and Inter Milan trailing second best with 18 each. Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano ..

Liverpool to meet Barca in SF

  Porto (Portugal);  Liverpool set up a mouthwatering Champions League semi-final against Barcelona after their superstar front three all scored in a 4-1 win away at FC Porto that saw them cruise into the last four 6-1 on aggregate. On a wet night at the Estadio do Dragao, Liverpool had to weather an early storm before scoring from their first attempt just before the half-hour mark, Sadio Mane prodding home for a goal given after a lengthy VAR review. Already in control of the ..

Cardiff playing on Klopp’s mind

 Porto:  Jurgen Klopp might be steeling himself for some sleepless nights as he tries to work out how to stop Lionel Messi, but for now the German can be delighted at seeing his Liverpool side extend their outstanding record in European ties under his management. Having won 2-0 at home in the first leg, Liverpool always knew that an early away goal in the second leg of their quarter-final against FC Porto at the Estadio do Dragao would effectively kill the tie. So it proved, as after ..

Mbappe-less PSG lose at Nantes

  Nantes (France);  Paris Saint-Germain failed to seal the Ligue 1 title for the third match running after a second-string line-up without dropped Kylian Mbappe took the champions to their second defeat in a matter of days, 3-2 at Nantes. A Diego Carlos brace and Majeed Waris’ tap-in inflicted a third league loss on Thomas Tuchel’s side, who were hammered 5-1 at second-placed Lille and drew with Strasbourg the previous week, despite Dani Alves’ stunning opener and ..

Messi boots Barca into semis

   Barcelona: Lionel Messi pounced on two Manchester United mistakes to score twice and end their hopes of another comeback at Camp Nou as Barcelona breezed into the Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday. After an excellent start, United were undone twice in four minutes by Messi, who first nicked the ball off the careless Ashley Young and then watched as a weak shot from distance squirmed underneath David de Gea. Philippe Coutinho, in perhaps his best performance of the season, ..

Ajax stun Juventus to make it to semi-finals

   Turin: Ajax stunned Juventus to reach the Champions League semi-finals for the first time since 1997 as Matthijs de Ligt’s thumping second-half header secured a 2-1 second-leg victory in the last eight in Turin on Tuesday. Cristiano Ronaldo, bidding for his sixth Champions League title, scored a 28th-minute header to put Juve ahead after a 1-1 first-leg draw, but Donny van de Beek levelled for Ajax before half-time. Teenage centre-back De Ligt struck midway through the ..

Nadal, Zverev post easy wins

  Monte Carlo, Rafael Nadal charged out of the blocks Wednesday to hammer Roberto Bautista Agut 6-1, 6-1 in his opening match at the Monte Carlo Masters. The 11-time champion showed no sign of the knee problems which forced him to quit ahead of an Indian Wells semi-final against Roger Federer a month ago. The 32-year-old had expressed pre-tournament caution regarding the health of his knee -- a worry which appeared to be groundless after a 76-minute masterclass. “I’m happy for ..

FC Goa are Hero Super Cup champions

   Bhubaneswar: FC Goa emerged as champions of the Hero Super Cup after defeating Chennaiyin 2-1 in a tense final at the Kalinga Stadium here Saturday. Ferran Corominas opened the scoring in the 51st minute with a simple tap-in, while Raphael Augusto’s deflected effort brought Chennaiyin back level. Brandon Fernandes scored a goal befitting of a title winner in the 64th minute to seal the contest in Goa’s favour. Despite Goa being billed as the favourites to take home the ..

Sterling elevates Man City

  LONDON: Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling struck twice as the Premier League champions beat Crystal Palace 3-1 at Selhurst Park on Sunday to go top of the table and heap pressure on title rivals Liverpool.Victory left City on 83 points from 33 matches, one point above Liverpool although the Merseyside club can leapfrog Pep Guardiola’s team with a win over third-placed Chelsea later on Sunday. The victory was the ninth straight win for City in the Premier League.  Having ..

AC Milan beat Lazio in key battle for the top-four slot

  MILAN: AC Milan strengthened their grip on fourth place in Serie A with a tense 1-0 win over Lazio at San Siro on Saturday that ended with a scuffle breaking out between players from both sides. Gennaro Gattuso’s side knew they had to win to remain in the final Champions League qualification spot after AS Roma had defeated Udinese 1-0 earlier in the day. Franck Kessie’s penalty 10 minutes from time secured a vital three points for Milan against one of their rivals in the ..

Sindhu, Saina and Srikanth reach quarters

  SINGAPORE: THE Indian trio of PV Sindhu, Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth continued their impressive run and progressed to the singles quarterfinals of the USD 355,000 Singapore Open here Thursday. The fourth-seeded Sindhu, a Rio Games silver medallist, took 39 minutes to get the better of world number 22 Mia Blichfeldt 21-13, 21-19, her second straight win over the Danish shuttler, who had clinched the Spain Masters earlier this year. World number 6 Sindhu will next face China’s ..

India clinch bilateral series

 KUALA LUMPUR:  Beat Malaysia 1-0  THE Indian women’s hockey team beat Malaysia by a solitary goal to complete a 4-0 win in the five-match bilateral series here Thursday. It was Navjot Kaur’s fine field goal in the 35th minute and a good defensive display that helped India win. India did well to create scoring opportunities with substantial circle entries but could not convert enough chances. “We need to work on converting goals,” stated Indian team chief ..

Napoli stall Juventus’ coronation

  Milan,  Napoli drew 1-1 with ten-man Genoa on Sunday to ensure that Juventus will have to wait another week to seal an eighth consecutive Serie A title. The champions have a 20-point advantage on second-placed Napoli, who they have beaten in both their head-to-head clashes, with seven games to go. Juventus, who beat AC Milan 2-1 on Saturday, needed Napoli to lose to win the Scudetto for the 35th time, ahead of their Champions League quarter-final first leg against Ajax next week. ..

Sindhu hoping to do better

   Singapore: Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu will look to shrugging off the disappointment of her recent early exits when she spearheads Indian challenge at the USD 355,000 Singapore Open, starting here Tuesday. Sindhu, who had claimed the BWF World Tour Finals in December last year, has looked off colour in the last few weeks. She made a first round exit at the All England Championship and lost in the second round of Malaysia Open, losing to Korea's Sung Ji Hyun on both occasion. ..

India’s chief hockey coach seeks a ‘stable environment’

   New Delhi: From Ric Charlesworth to Roelant Oltmans, most of India’s foreign hockey coaches had a tumultuous ride and the newly-appointed chief coach Graham Reid’s biggest desire is to have a “stable environment” for himself as well as his players. “What I want is a stable environment for me as well as the players,” Reid told PTI during an exclusive interview from Amsterdam. In fact, it was the legendary Charlesworth, who goaded him to apply ..

Kean puts Juve on title brink

   Milan:  Teenage sensation Moise Kean scored the winner to put Juventus one step away from an eighth consecutive Serie A title on Saturday as a 2-1 comeback win over AC Milan pushed the champions 21 points clear at the top. Kean — the victim of racist abuse earlier this week in Cagliari — came on as a substitute and fired in the winner on 84 minutes for his fifth goal in as many league games. The Turin giants will seal a 35th Scudetto on Sunday with seven matches ..

Barca closing in on top spot

 Barcelona,    Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi scored twice in two minutes as Barcelona broke the resistance of 10-man Atletico Madrid to go 11 points clear of their La Liga title rivals. Diego Costa was sent off in the 28th minute at Camp Nou after insulting referee Gil Manzano but while Atletico held on for almost another hour, Suarez and Messi struck late to seal a pivotal 2-0 win. The victory leaves Barca almost out of sight with seven games left to play and maintains momentum ..

Muguruza in Monterrey Open final, beats Rybarikova

  Monterrey (Mexico):  Spain's Garbiñe Muguruza defeated Slovakia's Magdalena Rybarikova 6-2, 6-3 to reach the final of the Monterrey Open, where she will clash with Belarusian Victoria Azarenka to defend her title, reports Efe news. Muguruza, 19th in WTA rankings, took advantage of Rybarikova's left knee injury and broke her twice at the start of the match to take a 4-0 lead that marked the course of the set on Saturday night. Rybarikova began moving more and won a couple ..