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India in driver’s seat after setting 482 target

Ashwin hit a sturdy knock of 106 runs before the hosts were bowled out for 286 in the final session of the day and set a target of 482 runs. At stumps on Day 3, England were 53/3.



Ravichandran Ashwin’s scintillating century and early wickets helped India to dominate on day three of the second Test against England after setting a 482 target at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Monday.

Ashwin played a knock of 106 runs before the hosts were bowled out for 286 in the final session of the day and set a target of 482 runs against visitors to take the 2-0 lead in the four-match series. At stumps on day three, England’s score read 53/3 with skipper Joe Root and Dan Lawrence still unbeaten on two and 19 runs respectively. Visitors still require 429 runs to win the game.

Axar Patel bagged two scalps while Ashwin clinched one wicket in the second innings.

Openers Dom Sibley (3) and Rory Burns (25) failed to provide a solid stand for the visitors and were picked by Patel and Ashwin respectively.

After losing openers early, England sent Jack Leach as nightwatchman but that move also did not work for the visitors. Leach was sent back to the pavilion on a single ball duck by Patel. Root and Lawrence played cautiously and made sure that the side did not suffer any hiccup on the day.

In the final session, 31.5 overs were bowled as both the teams together scored 118 runs with a loss of five wickets.

Earlier, Ishant Sharma departed after scoring seven runs when India’s score read 237 but Ashwin formed a crucial 49-run stand with Mohammed Siraj and the duo took the hosts’ score to 286 and the lead was extended to 481 runs.

At the tea break on day three, India’s score read 221/8, with Ashwin and Ishant on the field. The hosts currently enjoy a lead of 416 runs.

Resuming day three from 54/1, India got off to the worst possible start as the hosts lost both Rohit Sharma and Cheteshwar Pujara in the first 15 minutes. While Pujara lost the grip on his bat and failed to ground it on time, Rohit got stumped off Leach’s ball courtesy of some quick glove work by Foakes. Pant was sent up the order after the fall of two wickets but he too failed to leave a mark. Foakes stumped Pant as Leach scalped his second for the day.

Ajinkya Rahane and Kohli then started to rebuild India’s innings with a couple of boundaries. But Moeen Ali struck his first of the day as he dismissed Rahane to leave hosts reeling at 86/5 in the 31st over. Axar Patel too was sent back to the pavilion by Moeen in the 37th over. Kohli and Ashwin then formed a brilliant partnership. Both the players played cautiously but did not miss the opportunity to score boundaries on loose balls.

Continuing their brilliant form, Kohli and Ashwin completed their respective half-centuries as India crossed the 200-run mark in their second innings. Soon after that, England got the much-needed breakthrough as Moeen dismissed Kohli (62).

Kuldeep Yadav then took the field. Ashwin and Kuldeep began adding runs to the scoreboard, with India’s lead crossing the 400-run mark. However, the partnership between the two did not last for too long as Moeen removed Kuldeep (3).

Brief scores: England 134 and 53/3 (Rory Burns 25, Dan Lawrence 19*; Axar Patel 2-15, R Ashwin 1-28); India 329 and 286.

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World No. 2 Naomi Osaka knocked out of Olympics




World No. 2 Naomi Osaka was knocked out of the women’s singles event in the ongoing Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday. Czech Republic’s Marketa Vondrousova defeated Osaka in straight sets 6-1, 6-4.

In the first set, Osaka seemed completely out of touch and Marketa was able to win the set 6-1. The Czech maintained her charge in the second set, and she did not allow the home favourite Osaka to come back. In the end, Osaka ended up losing the match in straight sets.

Earlier on Sunday, Wimbledon 2021 champion Ashleigh Barty was knocked out of the women’s singles.

Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo defeated Barty 6-4, 6-3 in straight sets to enter the next round. The entire match lasted for one hour and 34 minutes.

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Mitchell Starc’s three-wicket haul and Matthew Wade’s unbeaten 51-run knock helped Australia defeat West Indies by six wickets in the third and final ODI at the Kensington Oval. With this win, Australia won the three-match series 2-1.

Chasing 153, Australia got off to a bad start as the visitors lost two wickets with just 27 runs on the board. Josh Philippe (10) and Moises Henriques (1) failed to leave a mark with the bat. Alex Carey and Mitchell Marsh then put on 38 runs for the third wicket, but this stand came to an end in the 14th over as Sheldon Cottrell sent Marsh (29) back to the pavilion, reducing Australia to 65/3.

Matthew Wade then joined Carey in the middle and the duo scored runs at a brisk pace, and West Indies seemingly had no answers. The duo put on 34 runs, but as soon as Australia started to look firm favourites, West Indies came back as Hayden Walsh dismissed Carey (35).

In the end, Ashton Agar (19*) along with Wade (51*) took Australia over the line by six wickets and 117 balls to spare.

Earlier, a spirited bowling performance helped Australia bundle out West Indies for just 152 inside 46 overs. Mitchell Starc scalped three wickets while Josh Hazlewood, Ashton Agar and Adam Zampa took two wickets each.

No West Indies batter was able to stay at the crease for a long time and it was just Evin Lewis who showed some fight with the bat as he registered a knock of 55 runs with the help of five 4s and three 6s.

Brief Scores: West Indies 152 all out (Evin Lewis 55, Darren Bravo 18, Mitchell Starc 3-43); Australia 153/4 (Matthew Wade 51*, Alex Carey 35, Alzarri Joseph 1-14).

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The India men’s hockey team defeated Spain 3-0 in their third Group A game in the Tokyo Olympics at the Oi Hockey Stadium South Pitch, in Tokyo on Tuesday.

This result comes two days after the team was subjected to a 1-7 thrashing at the hands of Australia on Sunday. In the first quarter, India took the lead as Simranjeet Singh scored the goal and the early nerves for the Manpreet Singh-led side eased a bit. Soon after Rupinder Pal Singh scored as well, giving India a 2-0 lead by the end of the first quarter.

No goals were scored in the second and third quarters, and India held on to the 2-0 lead. However, Spain was looking good while making attacking moves, and India had a tough task in holding them off.

In the fourth quarter, Rupinder scored one more goal as he successfully converted from a penalty corner, and hence India gained a 3-0 lead. In the end, India managed to hold on and walked away with a victory.

Before the match against Spain, India had defeated New Zealand but lost to Australia.

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The second T20I between India and Sri Lanka will be played on 28 July, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) confirmed on Tuesday.

All-rounder Krunal Pandya has tested positive following the Rapid Antigen Tests conducted ahead of the match on Tuesday morning. “The second T20I between Sri Lanka and India originally scheduled to be played on July 27 has been pushed forward by a day and will now take place on Wednesday, July 28,” BCCI said in a statement.

“Following the Rapid Antigen Tests conducted ahead of the match on Tuesday morning, Team India all-rounder Krunal Pandya was found to be positive. The Medical Teams have identified eight members as close contacts. The entire contingent is undergoing RT-PCR tests today to ascertain any further outbreak in the squad,” it added.

The third T20I between both sides will go ahead as scheduled on Thursday.

Earlier in the day, ANI had reported that Krunal has tested Covid-19 positive and that forced the two teams to go into isolation till reports come in of the rest of the players.

“Krunal has tested positive and the T20I on Tuesday has been postponed and will happen on Wednesday if all the others test negative. The players are currently isolating,” the source said.

This puts a question mark on opener Prithvi Shaw as well as Suryakumar Yadav as they were set to travel to England as a replacement for the Test series against England.

The BCCI on Monday informed that the All-India Senior Selection Committee has named Prithvi Shaw and Suryakumar Yadav as replacements for the upcoming Test series against England as all-rounder Washington Sundar, batsman Shubman Gill and pacer Avesh Khan have been ruled out of the tour due to injuries.

As per the release, Sundar had taken an injection on his right-hand bowling finger during the three-day practice game against County Select XI. However, his recovery will take longer than expected and he is not bowling-fit. As a result, the spinner has been ruled out of the remainder of the England tour.

Fast bowler Avesh Khan suffered a blow to his left thumb on Day 1 of the warm-up game. He was taken for an X-Ray and the result confirmed a fracture. A specialist was consulted for further management of his injury. He is ruled out of India’s Tour of England.

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Mirabai dedicates Olympic medal to India, thanks PM Modi for encouragement




Dedicating her victory to the prayers and love of Indians, Olympic silver medallist Saikhom Mirabai Chanu said that her hard work, along with encouragement by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, helped her win in Tokyo.

“I was able to win this medal because of the prayers and love of the people of India. I wish all young people especially girls who have entered sports to make the country proud. I dedicate my medal to the people of the country. I thank the prime minister and sports minister for encouraging me,” said Chanu after returning to India on Monday.

Recalling her journey after Rio Olympics, Chanu said, “All my hopes and dreams were shattered after failing to win a medal in Rio Olympics. I had to make a comeback in weightlifting again. But later I realised that I can still do something for India. I worked hard, dealt with injuries and other difficulties and focused on my training. Because of all the hard work, today I reached this point.”

When asked what she would like to do for youth, especially young girls from northeast India, the Olympics medallist said she would help in training the upcoming athletes.

“People of Northeast India know very little about sports right now. I will work to give recognition to the small state of Manipur by training youth, especially young girls,” she added.

Chanu’s Silver Medal could get upgraded. According to sources, China’s gold medal winner Hou Zhihui is being tested by the anti-doping authorities. If Zhihui fails, Chanu could become the first Indian woman to win a Gold medal in weightlifting at Olympics.

After winning the Silver medal, Chanu returned to India on Monday, Union Railways Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw felicitated her. He also announced a reward of Rs 2 crore and promotion in her job in the Railways. Union Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Anurag Thakur also felicitated Chanu.

Union Minister for Law and Justice Minister Kiren Rijiju and Union Minister for Tourism, Culture and Development of North-Eastern region Kishan Reddy, Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways and Minister for AYUSH, Sarbananda Sonowal and Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports, Nisith Pramanik were also present.

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Overhaul of coaching staff on cards after poor display by shooters

Indian shooters fail to enter qualification stage 2 in 10m Air Rifle Mixed Team.




National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) president Raninder Singh Sodhi on Tuesday said he is deliberating on overhauling the coaching staff as shooters have not been able to perform on expected lines at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics.

“Yes, definitely the performances have not been on expected lines and I have spoken of an overhaul of the coaching staff as I feel something is lacking in getting our shooters prepared for these big occasions because clearly the talent is there and we have seen it here as well,” Raninder told ANI. “Let’s continue to back the team and I am sure we’ll get results. Post-mortems can wait till after the Games,” he added.

Heading into the Olympics, it was the shooting contingent that was favourite to bring back medals for India. However, the going has been disappointing, to say the least. Pair of Saurabh Chaudhary and Manu Bhaker failed to qualify for the medal match in the 10m Air Pistol Mixed Team event after finishing the Qualification stage 2 at the seventh spot here at the Asaka Shooting—10m Range on Tuesday. Chaudhary and Bhaker shot a total of 380 in Qualification stage 2 and hence they bowed out of the Olympics in the mixed event.

Saurabh and Manu Bhaker had progressed to Qualification stage 2 of the 10m Air Pistol Mixed Team event after registering a total score of 582 in Qualification stage 1. Earlier, ace shooters Deepak Kumar and Divyansh Singh Panwar failed to qualify for the medal round in the men’s 10m Air Rifle Qualification. Both Elavenil Valarivan and Apurvi Chandela failed to qualify for the medal round after finishing 16th and 36th respectively in the women’s 10m Air Rifle Qualification. Saurabh had failed to rise to the challenge in the finals of the men’s 10m Air Rifle event as he finished seventh. Both Manu Bhaker and Yashaswini Singh Deswal had failed to qualify for the medal round after finishing 12th and 13th respectively in the women’s 10m Air Pistol Qualification.

India’s teams of Elavenil Valarivan/Divyansh Singh Panwar and Deepak Kumar/Anjum Moudgil failed to make the Qualification stage 2 in the 10m Air Rifle Mixed Team event here at the Asaka Shooting—10m Range on Tuesday.

While Elavenil/Divyansh registered a total score of 626.5, finishing in the 12th spot in the Qualification stage 1, Deepak/Anjum had the same fate as they also failed to qualify after finishing at the 18th spot with a total score of 623.8. In series 1, Elavenil shot 105 while Divyansh registered a score of 103.6, but it was not enough to hand them a place within the top eight. Elavenil and Divyansh shot 104 and 104.1 in the second series, but they were trailing by the time the third series came, and in the end, they missed out on qualification.

Deepak and Anjum also had an underwhelming performance in series 1 and they were also trailing and their qualification for stage 2 looked difficult. In the end, Deepak and Anjum also failed to qualify for the next stage, and India’s disappointing show in the shooting event continued.

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