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Power-hitters from India steal the show in IPL

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In the last few years, mostly foreigner players used to be identified as power-hitters. The teams used to be dependent on batsmen such as Andre Russell, Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum, Jos Buttler, Eoin Morgan, Kieron Pollard, Chris Lynn, Dwayne Bravo, A.B. de Villiers, David Warner and Jonny Bairstow for the six-spree . But in the current season of IPL, Indian power-hitters have given spellbinding performances.

 Hardik Pandya and Rishabh Pant were named when it came to identifying the Indian power-hitters. Moreover, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Sanju Samson and Ajinkya Rahane also displayed their capabilities as power-hitters. But these players could not sustain it. 

  In this season of IPL, most of the teams have played two matches each and some of them have played even three matches. In fact, it will be too early to make a final opinion but still admirable are the players who have continued show of power-hitting which was seen last year also. 

Sanju Samson is one such player. He has played two matches in this season of IPL, and in both the matches, he has been awarded Man of the Match. He hit nine sixes against Chennai Super Kings and seven sixes against Kings XI Punjab and his strike rate is a huge 214.86. In the first match, Piyush Chawla and Ravindra Jadeja were targeted by him, and in the second match he targeted Maxwell. Sanju not only plays pull shots well but his hits over long-off and long-on are unique. His shots are not mistimed in such power hitting. He has developed his pull shots. In view of this skill of Samson, seamers gave him very few short balls in both the matches. The strategy to deliver the ball far from his body was adopted by the bowlers, but Sanju used his steps well and did not allow this trick to succeed. Last year also, Sanju had scored second fastest century in IPL by hitting hundred off 54 balls against SRH.   

  Similarly, Mayank Agarwal is known to play big innings. But this time, he displayed a different kind of talent by virtue of massive power-hitting in the two matches.

   Like Sanju, Mayank also hits over the head of the bowler and he likes to hit in the direction of long-off, long-on. A massive 221 runs in three matches and strike rate of 170 is enough to explain his talent. Sometimes, Rohit Sharma’s trademark shots get reflected in Mayank’s superb clean hitting over the midwicket. 

The third power hitter is K.L. Rahul. He demonstrated huge power-hits spree against RCB and his innings was the biggest one of any Indian in IPL. He particularly hit speedsters. He hit Dale Steyn, Navdeep Saini and Umesh Yadav in a match against RCB and he openly smashed balls from Jofra Archer and Ankit Rajput. The faster the ball, the speedier the shot. The difference was only that he did not hit indiscriminately against Rajasthan Royals but he hit according to the merit of the ball. He knew that Mayank Agarwal, who was on the other end, was in full form. Therefore, he controlled himself and stopped short of playing such shots for some time in the match. 

In the same match, Rahul Tewatia turned hero from villain by smashing five sixes in one over of Sheldon Cottrell who was, hitherto, proving to be an excellent bowler in this match. He was not able to rise to expectations of Captain Steve Smith in the upper order for batting. At the same time, Rohit Sharma was also seen executing power hits against KKR. Jofra Archer and Pat Cummins were among the foreigners who displayed splendid hits. They are actually bowlers.   

Particularly, Jofra Archer’s hits scripted victory in both the matches. Let’s be hopeful that several other Indian power-hitters emerge in this season of IPL. Everybody is waiting for the show of power hitting from Rishabh Pant and Hardik Pandya.

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INDIAN TEAM SWEAT IT OUT IN NETS AHEAD OF FIRST ODI

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Team India held its first practice session in Harare ahead of their three-match ODI series against Zimbabwe, which will start from 18 August onwards.

Players like Shubman Gill, Deepak Chahar, Prasidh Krishna, and Mohammed Siraj were seen sweating it out in the nets.

The series is set to start from 18 August onwards and will go on till 22 August.

The All-India Senior Selection Committee has appointed KL Rahul as the captain of the side and named Shikhar Dhawan as his deputy.

Earlier, Shikhar Dhawan was supposed to lead the side touring Zimbabwe. But after KL Rahul has been cleared, the right-hander has been made the captain and Dhawan as his deputy.

Earlier on 30 July, the Indian squad touring Zimbabwe for a three-match ODI series was announced.

Senior players like Virat Kohli, Rishabh Pant, and Jasprit Bumrah were not included in the squad.

Rahul Tripathi, who represents Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League, was included in the ODI squad after his solid performance in the 2022 edition. In 14 games, he scored 413 runs at an average of 37.55 and hit three fifties. He was the second-highest run-getter for his team.

All-rounder Washington Sundar and bowler Deepak Chahar have also made a return to the side after battling injuries.

The coaching staff for India’s tour of Zimbabwe, which consists of three ODIs, has been revealed. For the tour of Zimbabwe, India legend and current head of the National Cricket Academy (NCA), VVS Laxman, will assume the role of head coach.

The original captain of Zimbabwe, Craig Ervine, is still out of the squad due to a hamstring injury. Fast bowlers blessing Muzarabani and Tendai Chatara continue to remain on the sidelines in the series against India too. The left-arm spinner Wellington Masakadza will miss the series.

KL Rahul (captain), Shikhar Dhawan (vice-captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Prasidh Krishna, Mohd Siraj, Deepak Chahar.

Regis Chakabva (c), Tanaka Chivanga, Bradley Evans, Luke Jongwe, Ryan Burl, Innocent Kaia, Kaitano Takudzwanashe, Clive Madande, Wesley Madhevere, Tadiwanashe Marumani, John Masara, Tony Munyonga, Richard Ngarava, Victor Nyauchi, Sikandar Raza, Milton Shumba, and Donald Tiripano.

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FC Goa set to take on Mohammedan SC in opener

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In what is set to be a repeat of the Durand Cup 2021 final, defending champions FC Goa are all set to lock horns with Mohammedan SC in the opening match of the Durand Cup 2022 on Tuesday.

The Gaurs arrived in Kolkata for the tournament on Sunday ahead of the club’s third campaign at the Durand Cup, having previously played in the 2019 and 2021 editions. So far, the club has remained unbeaten in the tournament and would look to extend its solid run. Doggie Cardozo, the head coach of FC Goa’s Durand Cup squad, is upbeat about the team’s chances in the competition. “Our players have trained well and are in good spirits.” “They are aware that playing in the prestigious tournament is a good opportunity for them, and are hence keen to create an impact,” he said, ahead of the team’s clash against the Kolkata-based club.

FC Goa players during the practice ahead of Durand Cup.

“Our training session on Monday was quite fruitful. The whole squad worked in unison and we were able to discuss some key areas as far as preparation for the games is concerned.

The Boys in Orange, who are also the tournament’s defending champions, are expected to open their campaign in front of a packed house. Cardozo added that this serves as extra motivation for the team.

“We are not under any pressure.” Our objectives are clear-be the best versions of ourselves and try to get the trophy back home. “Playing in front of the fans would inspire us more and help us remember what we’re here for, and we look forward to having a great match against Mohammedan SC,” he commented.

“We intend to take the three points home , as that will give us an added boost.” Starting on a strong note is important, as it will set the tone for the rest of our campaign.

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WEST INDIES BEAT NEW ZEALAND BY 8 WICKETS

The decision by the West Indies to play with two spinners, Akeal Hosein and Hayden Walsh proved crucial in the match. They created difficulties for batters to play shots.

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A blistering 102-run opening wicket stand between Brandon King and Shamarh Brook guided West Indies to a win against New Zealand by eight wickets in the third T20I to prevent a sweep in the three-match series on Sunday.

Despite suffering a defeat against the West Indies by 8 wickets in the third and final match, New Zealand clinched the T20I series 2-1. Chasing 146, right-hander Brandon King (53) got the hosts off to a flyer on his return from injury, while fellow opener Shamarh Brooks (56*) played a more cautious role as the hosts put on 102 for the opening wicket to leave New Zealand needing a miracle.

Rovman Powell (27*) came in to guide the run chase home, with the stand-in West Indies captain smashing Jimmy Neesham for six on the final delivery of the penultimate over to seal the contest.

Earlier, opting to bat first, the New Zealand top-order made double-digit figures during their respective innings, but only one batter scored more than 24 as the hosts’ excellent bowling restricted the visitors from scoring runs.

Glenn Phillips looked the best of the New Zealand batters, smashing 41 from just 26 balls to help the visitors post a below-par score of 145/7 from their allotted 20 overs. While New Zealand opener Martin Guptill only scored 15 before he was bowled by Akeal Hosein, the veteran did enough to become the leading run-scorer in the history of men’s T20I.

The decision by the West Indies to play two spinners proved crucial in the match, with Hosein bagging two wickets conceding 18 runs, Hayden Walsh (1/16) creating difficulties for batters to play big shots, and pacer Odean Smith (3/29) reaping the rewards with career-best figures.

Brief score: New Zealand 145/7 (Glenn Phillips 41, Kane Williamson 24; Odean Smith 3-29) vs West Indies 150/2 (Shamarh Brooks 56*, Brandon King 53; Ish Sodhi 1-36).

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Indian boxer Nikhat Zareen gifts PM Modi boxing gloves

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Indian Commonwealth Games contingent expressed their delight at being honored by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for their excellent performance at Birmingham 2022.

PM Modi felicitated the Indian contingent for the Commonwealth Games (CWG) 2022 in New Delhi on Saturday. The felicitation was attended by both athletes and their coaches. Union Minister for Youth Affairs & Sports Anurag Singh Thakur and Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports Nisith Pramanik were among those present. Prime Minister congratulated the players and coaches for their stupendous performance at the Commonwealth Games 2022 held in Birmingham, where India bagged 22 Gold, 16 Silver, and 23 Bronze medals in various disciplines.

During the event, sprinter Hima Das gave the traditional Assamese gamocha, and Indian boxer Nikhat Zareen gifted PM Modi her boxing gloves.

“Honoured to gift the boxing gloves signed by all the pugilists to our honorable Prime Minister @narendramodi sir. Thank you for this amazing opportunity. A great day spent with my fellow athletes who have made the country proud,” Nikhat tweeted.

Hima Das took to her Twitter handle and wrote, “Elated to receive blessings from our honorable Prime Minister – Shri @narendramodi Ji, by virtue of Commonwealth Games 2022. Fortunate to have presented him with our traditional gamcha, wrapped with immense gratitude from all of Assam.”

Commonwealth Games 2022 champion weightlifter Mirabai Chanu, who won the gold medal in the Women’s 49kg final, thanked the PM for his words of motivation.

“Honoured to meet & interact with our Honourable Prime Minister @narendramodi Sir. Thank you so much sir for all your support & encouragement. Jai Hind,” Chanu said.

“Thank You Sir for sparing your valuable time and inviting us over to your residence. It was like always a delight to speak with you,” wrote shuttler Chirag Shetty.

CWG 2022 gold medallist Lakshya Sen also expressed his appreciation for being honored by the PM.

“What a great day for all the Athletes #gratitude. Thank you so much Sir for appreciating our hard work and for your words of encouragement. We are all very grateful for your support. Will continue to make our nation proud. Jai Hind!” Indian shuttler Sen tweeted.

“Meeting Hon. PM @narendramodi once again, interacting with him and seeking a blessing was motivating and inspiring as always. His keen interest in our performances and detailed conversations are very gratifying!” said Bhavina Patel, who won the gold medal in Para table tennis at the Birmingham 2022.

Addressing the Indian CWG contingent on Saturday, PM said that the golden period of Indian sports has just begun and hailed the fine show of the athletes.

India finished 4th in the medal tally winning a total of 61 medals at the CWG 2022, including 22 gold, 16 Silver, and 23 Bronze medals.

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Four games win hearts, disappointment in weightlifting and squash

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This time, a total of 16 medals, including seven gold were lost due to the non-availability of shooting events in the CWG. It was largely compensated by wrestling, badminton, table tennis, Para Powerlifting, lawn ball, cricket, hockey, athletics, and judo. India’s number of gold medals increased in the first four games compared to the last CWG held at Gold Coast. India won gold and a bar of silver in the lawn bowl in which not a single medal was won before. In hockey, both the teams returned empty-handed last time but this time the men’s team won a silver, and the women’s team won a medal after 16 years. In cricket, the Indian women’s team could not win gold after defeating Australia as they lost the last eight wickets for 34 runs but beating England in the SF was an achievement. Judo was not their last time, India won three medals including two gold in Judo. The personal best performance of many players in athletics proved that India’s preparations are on the right track because of the Paris Olympics.

Despite all this, weightlifters and squash players disappointed. The boxers equalled last time’s three gold medals but they got only one silver means two silvers less than last time. Mirabai Chanu, Jeremy Lalrinnunga, and Achinta Sheuli, did win gold medals in weightlifting, and they broke snatch games record but the rest of the weightlifters could neither break the national record nor give personal best. Most of these weightlifters could not even repeat their performance in the National Championship. Poonam Yadav, who won gold last time in 69 kg, failed in all three clean and jerk attempts, it is a matter of mystery. In TT, Achanta Sharath Kamal proved that age is just a number. The player was once weak in the backhand, but he made it his strength, winning a total of seven golds in 16 years. His biggest quality is to play his strategy according to the opposition player.

In athletics, however, the situation was quite the opposite. In a ten km walk, Priyanka Goswami and Sandeep won medals in their respective categories with PB performances. In the 3000m steeplechase, Avinash Sawale clocked a PB performance to outdo a Kenyan in medals and very near to the other Kenyan who won the gold medal by a fraction of a second. Gold medalist Eldhose Paul and silver-winner Abdulla Aboobacker won the triple jump gold and silver & broke the 17-meter barrier. For all the athletes including Murali Sreeshankar in the long jump, the World Championships held recently formed the base of their medals. Murli, who was performing lighter than the qualifying competition in the final, corrected his mistake and got the silver, but Seema Poonia and Navjeet Dhillon, who won silver and bronze at Gold Coast were almost four to five meters lesser this time. Both have shown that their preparations are going in the opposite direction. Two silvers in squash narrowed us down to two bronzesthis time.

In wrestling, only Canadian and Nigerian wrestlers were challenged as usual and Indian wrestlers managed to bag all the medals like the last time, which includes six golds i.e., one more gold than last time. Vinesh Phogat continued to create history in women’s wrestling by winning her third gold while emerging Naveen proved to be a new sensation in 74kg. Some players gave a befitting reply to their federations with their excellent performance. Judoka Tulika Maan was not considered for selection in the judo team. Even the federation said that there is no hope of a medal in the highest weight category of women, but Tulika won the silver.

Similarly, Tejaswin Shankar had to take refuge in the court to participate in these games. His name was rejected saying that he had not participated in the National Championship, arguing that he was participating in a competition in the US at the same time. Eventually, this player made 2.22 m in the high jump. He won the bronze medal. In lawn ball, women from other sports showed that if there is scope, there is nothing wrong with changing the game. When Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore won the Olympic medal, he emphasized this the most because he too was once among the cricket potential players of Madhya Pradesh.

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What Sports Are The Most Frequently Bet On?

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Betting on sports is a vast industry making up over 30% of the entire gambling industry. If we take a look at what this might look like in numbers, around 500 billion dollars is used for gambling around the world each year. This means that approximately 150 billion dollars are spent on sports betting annually, which shows just how big a market it is.You are probably wondering what sports are most frequently bet on throughout the year. Here is a list of some of the most popular sports that people tend to bet on the most. We will take a look at whether it is because people just enjoy watching and betting on their favorite sport or whether a specific sport gives you an advantage while betting. 

American Football

In the USA, American Football is without a doubt the number one sport that people both love to play and watch. The NFL has some of the most diehard fans of any sport, and people follow the game like a religion. With huge tournaments such as the super bowl, which attract attention from all around the world, it is no surprise that American Football is one of the most popular sports when it comes to betting.Another reason that people love to bet on American Football is the variety of leagues that are available to bet on. People can bet on college football all the way up to the NFL, which means there isn’t a shortage of teams to rally behind and place bets on. They can also choose to bet on live games or make predictions before they start. More options mean more opportunities to place all kinds of bets on different teams, which adds to the popularity of this sport in the gambling scene.  

Soccer

Soccer is the biggest sport in the world with the largest number of people playing it globally. It is then no surprise that it is also a huge sport when it comes to placing bets. With the advancement of technology, the types of bets that people can place on soccer matches have progressed over the years. The most noticeable type of bet that has caused sports betting within soccer to skyrocket is the ability to cash out early. This type of betting has made watching soccer a lot more exciting as people have to be paying extra attention to the screen to decide whether they want to get out of the bet or stay in for the maximum gain.In the UK alone, it is estimated that a mind-blowing 1 billion pounds are spent on soccer bets each year. Soccer as a sport has also only gone up in popularity over the last few years with the American soccer league, MLS, gaining a lot of attention. Although it is a long way from being as popular as American football, soccer in the US appears to be gaining a lot more traction and fans from around the world. For this reason, it is easy to see that soccer is going nowhere anytime soon, and the interest in betting on the sport will likely only increase. 

Horse Racing

For those that are unaware, horse racing was the number one sport for betting for the longest time. This may not still be the case however, horse racing still plays a massive part in the sports gambling world, with an estimated 100 billion dollars being spent betting on the sport each year. In addition to this, horse racing is the only sport where you can actually bet on it at all times of the day.Horse racing is a huge day out for many people who save part of their earnings to spend betting on horses in the hopes of winning big. This may come as a big surprise, but Japan actually has the biggest horse racing market, with the United Kingdom following behind and then Australia behind them. 

Tennis

The number three spot when it comes to sports most frequently bet on is tennis. You might not have expected this but there are some reasons why this is the case. The first being that placing bets on tennis is considered relatively safe due to the odds being fairly low. For example, if one of the top players, such as Rafael Nadal, is scheduled to play against a player who is not considered very strong, it is a relatively safe bet to place on Nadal winning.   

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