Sex slur: HI begins probe; videographer suspended

first_imgOne of the 5 e-mailed pictures, purportedly of videographer Basavraj with sex workers, sent to Hockey India by an anonymous source.A committee of Hockey India (HI) on Wednesday began a probe into allegations of sexual harassment and misconduct made by a woman player against coach M.K. Kaushik and other team officials.Kaushik would not be part of the women’s team heading for the Asia Cup. A team videographer, whose photos with sex workers has emerged, has been suspended until the probe is over.Hockey India acting president Vidya Stokes promised an impartial probe into the allegations.”There is nothing to hide. We will separately listen to the player as well as Kaushik. We will do a thorough inquiry as the truth must come out,” Stokes said.Stokes and other representatives of Hockey India met in Delhi to look into the allegations.Stokes said Kaushik had requested to be kept out of the team until his name was cleared. “The assistant coach will lead the team for the Asia Cup. The players are fully equipped and ready for the tournament,” she said.Indian hockey hit a new low on Tuesday after a member of the women’s team sent a written complaint alleging that Kaushik had asked for sexual favours and used vulgar language during the team’s recent Canada and China tours. There was more controversy as photos of the team’s videographer with sex workers emerged.Hockey India general secretary Narinder Batra told Headlines Today that the versions of Kaushik, the player as well as the videographer would be heard. “Stokes will also talk to all the other players for complaints, if any,” he said.advertisementThe allegations against Kaushik have shocked the hockey fraternity as he is seen as a man with an impeccable record.Former men’s hockey captain M.D. Shahid told Headlines Today that he was shocked by the allegations against Kaushik. “I have played with him and have great respect for him. A full inquiry should be done and anyone found guilty punished,” he said.last_img read more

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Sri Lanka tri-series: Dhoni seeks spark of brilliance from batsmen

first_imgIndian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Tuesday defended his woefully out-of-form batsmen, saying he team just needs one individual spark of brilliance for the entire line-up to click in the must-win tri-series match against New Zealand.”You want one batsman to play a big innings in all games, whichever the batsman may be, especially on these kind of wickets. It can be termed as individual brilliance because you have one batsman batting through and the others batting around him,” Dhoni said in a pre-match press conference.”It’s more about the mindset because in one-day cricket you’re so used to going after and hitting the bowlers right from the first delivery. It’s not only in the sub-continent, throughout the world you see wickets are a lot flatter now, especially for the one-dayers,” he explained.”If you talk about the batting collapses, it’s happened twice in three games. But if it is said that this is the batting strength of our side, I won’t agree with that. One thing we can’t deny is that we have had two batting failures and we have to rectify the problem, get on the wicket and try to score some runs,” he added.Dhoni said the key to success on the pitches here is to play steadily for at least 20 overs before cutting loose.”To give respect to the bowlers for the first 10 overs, and the next 40 overs is yours. This is one of those venues where you have to prolong the respect for bowlers by another 10 overs. If you don’t lose too many wickets for 20 overs, then you can really dictate the bowlers and can have your own game plan set after that,” he said.advertisementThe crushing previous defeats to New Zealand (by 200 runs) and Sri Lankan (by eight wickets) have been hard to take, admitted Dhoni but insisted that the team can recover.”As a team, we are disappointed about it. But if you see, all the matches have been one-sided, which suggests if you lose too many wickets early, there is a big batting collapse.We have seen it happen throughout the tournament,” he said.”The batsmen are trying to work out their plans as to what needs to be done. They are not getting out to rash shots. They are trying to battle through and there are times when you can’t do that. That’s what happened in the last two games when we had batting collapses. So at the end of the day, when you are in the middle, you just have to find a way as to how you can get the runs because the pressure keeps on mounting,” he added.On the dreadful form of Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja, Dhoni said the duo may be struggling right now but both of them have proved themselves to be match-winners in the past.”You have to see the strength. What kind of stability one brings into the side. Especially, if you see Ravindra Jadeja, if you see his bowling performance in the past one and half years, he had quite a few bad games in between but overall, a majority of games he has bowled really well.”His batting has dipped down but if he can contribute with the bat, he is the option with whom we can play with five bowlers. He is literally our fifth bowler who has done well for us unless you can find an all-rounder who can bowl 10 overs for us,” he explained.”Rohit, I think, it’s a tricky situation for him. Always in and out of the side. There’s a pressure when you are always in and out of the side. He was unfortunate to get out once when he didn’t get the umpire’s decision in his favour. So two innings, I don’t really think is good enough to decide whether a player is good or not. But of course, he is working hard. We are just hoping he comes up and scores some big runs,” he added.On former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram criticism that the youngsters in the team are too spoilt and soft, Dhoni said the he wasn’t aware of such comments but just a couple of bad performances should not invite such remarks.”I don’t know what Wasim Akram said. For me, what’s important is how the team is shaping up. if you talk about the team being soft, they have done really well in adverse and difficult conditions. Whether it’s in Australia or the Twenty20 World Cup or some of the other tournaments where we were not at our best,” he pointed out.advertisement”Even in the Asia Cup, we did well with the youngsters.So I don’t think you should be clever enough to make a statement based on three or four games. It’s the overall picture that you set. I think the guys are courageous enough to go through any conditions or situations thrown at them.”We are on the backfoot right now, with the conditions maybe. But these are the boys who will ultimately be part of the Indian cricket team now or sometime later,” he added.Asked whether India would consider going in with seven batsmen to strengthen the fragile-looking line-up, Dhoni said packing more willow-wielders was no guarantee for huge scores.”That’s definitely one of the options but again you have to see whether in these conditions we can bowl well with the part-timers because if we let them score to many runs, it becomes difficult to chase. At the same time, it may be difficult to contain them if they are chasing.”We have to strike a balance but if the team feels the need to have additional specialist batsman and we can play around with the part-timers, we can look at that. But as I say, it’s more like a gamble and you have balance the positives and the negatives of having an individual in the side,” he said.last_img read more

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Tabloid tricked, blackmailed me: Hameed

first_imgFile photo of Pakistan Cricketer Yasir Hameed leaving for Pakistan High Commission in London.Disowning the startling match-fixing accusations he has made against his Pakistan teammates, opener Yasir Hameed has claimed that he was tricked into giving the statements and later blackmailed to stand by them.Hameed, in a video released by British tabloid The News of the World, is shown accusing his teammates of fixing almost “every match” Pakistan has played.But the batsman denied giving any such interview to the tabloid and said the undercover reporter who spoke to him posing as a sponsorship agent sent him intimidating text messages to stick to the comments shown in the video released on Sunday.Hameed was summoned to the Pakistan High Commission in England for a meeting with High Commissioner Wajid Shamsul Hasan in London on Sunday.After the meeting, the Pakistan Cricket Board’s legal advisor Tafazzul Rizvi released a statement on behalf of Hameed.In the statement, Hameed said that he was offered money and even blackmailed to stand by the remarks attributed to him in the video which he claims was shot without his knowledge.”I would like to respond to comments attributed to me by the News of the World today. I wish to stress I have never been approached by the NOTW and neither did I approach anyone connected with the News of the World to disclose any allegations concerning the Pakistan cricket team or any other players,” Hameed said in his statement.Hameed claimed that he was having dinner with a friend at the Holiday Inn Nottingham on the evening of Monday August 30 and was approached by a man who introduced himself as Abid Khan and offered to arrange a sponsorship deal for him (Yasir) with ETIHAD Airways.advertisement”I have now seen a photograph of the so called Abid Khan and have discovered that he is Mazhar Mahmood (NOTW’s undercover reporter).”Naturally I was interested in what he had to say and we began a conversation. He offered me at least 50,000 pounds for the deal, which was for 6″x3″ ETIHAD sticker at the back of the cricket bat plus TV and billboard advertisements in the UAE,” he said.”He also asked me for names of 4 more players who may be interested in a similar deal I thought of Umar Gul, Shahid Afridi, Umar Akmal and Fawad Alam,” Hameed added. “I also called Umar Gul during this conversation to tell him about this potential contract deal and he agreed that I should continue with the negotiations,” Hameed said.”Then Abid Khan started asking about the current match fixing allegations and as I saw him as a friend and a potential agent, I naively started to answer his questions. He asked me about the match fixing allegations against the current three Pakistani players and if I had any further knowledge. As far as I can recall I only told him whatever I had already read in the newspapers about this matter,” Hameed stated.Hameed said two days after the meeting, he began receiving text messages telling him that the conversation between him and Abid had been taped.”It seems that Abid had a hidden camera which I was totally unaware of.”I then left the hotel with my friend and came back to where I was staying. Two days later Abid then called me and offered me 25,000 pounds to give a statement against the 3 current players under investigation, which I immediately refused and put the phone down.”I neither called nor answered any calls from Abid after this conversation. When News of the World released my conversation, which Abid Khan recorded without me knowing about it, I was contacted by the media in Pakistan to confirm if I gave the statement to the NOTW, I denied categorically as explained above that this was not the case. Subsequently, I received a text message from Abid Khan from his number 07860109876, which I found to be intimidating as reflected in his message reproduced below,” Hameed said.Hameed said the message that he received stated, “Incidentally you are in video drinking wine and saying all the quotes attributed to you. Denying it is just stupid as we will be releasing the video to TV. Better that you stand up and speak the truth.”However, neither Hameed nor Rizvi explained why the player did not report his meeting with Abid Khan aka Mazhar Mahmood earlier to the team management.last_img read more

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Mahendra Singh Dhoni terms Wankhede pitch ‘flattest wicket’

first_imgCaptain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Saturday took a swipe at the Wankhede Stadium pitch, calling it one of the “flattest wickets” that he has come across.”Frankly, I really don’t know what happened. It started to turn in the morning [on Saturday]. Till yesterday, everything was fine. It was among the flattest of wickets – and I’m seriously saying, not joking. Most of us thought it’ll be a draw but it turned into a close game,” he told reporters after the third Test ended in a thrilling draw.India won the series 2-0, and Dhoni insisted that his team maintained pressure on the West Indies in this game.”The first hour really suggested us as to what happens. The course of the match was designed by the batsman. It was very important to get wickets in the first half and we were able to do that in the first hour. That really changed the game for us,” he said.”We were able to put pressure on the opposition batsmen. We tried to create bit of panic and I think most of the time we were able to put pressure on them. That was one of the main reasons we were successful in the first session.”Dhoni pointed out that India losing wickets regularly in the second innings prevented partnerships being built. “We kept losing wickets at the wrong time. It was quite easy to stay on the wicket but difficult to score runs. A few of us thought if we can rotate and look for those singles, it’ll become a bit easy. But it was a good game of cricket at the end of the day,” he said.advertisementWest Indies captain Darren Sammy admitted that a defeat would have been shattering for his team.”All sorts of things were going through my mind, going down to the end. At one point, the tied Test came in mind. But I was speaking to Kirk Edwards – win or draw, win or draw, we can’t lose this,” he said. “It shows once you believe, there’s a possibility of achieving that. The way we batted, it would have been heartbreaking to lose that game.”Sammy said his was aim was to go for a win.”We were definitely looking for a win, playing a higher rung team, we would have got some [ICC ranking] points. The guys didn’t bat well, but bowlers did well. Devendra Bishoo, on one leg, bowled 50 overs. Marlon Samuels bowling 30 overs? Rampaul, Fidel. Unfortunately, I couldn’t bowl. A bowler down, we really showed a lot of fight. That’s a positive from this series: the way we kept our heads up when we were down,” he said.last_img read more

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Gopi Chand’s unfulfilled dream: Winning Olympic medal

first_imgNot very familiar with sports as a child, former All England champion and one of the most decorated Indian sportspersons P Gopi Chand still struggles to explain how he took to badminton.Busy imparting his knowledge of the sport to young shuttlers, Gopi Chand was in the Capital on Saturday to promote his biography The World Beneath His Feat, which recounts the story of his career.”Badminton happened to me over a period of years and I never actually thought how I took to the sport. Honestly, I didn’t know much about sports but enjoyed playing badminton. Gradually it became a very important part of my life,” Gopi told Mail Today.Penned by Sanjay Sharma and Shachi Sharma, the biography doesn’t reveal much about his coaching career which too has flourished with time.While Gopi has a number of achievements to his name, having not won an Olympic medal remains an unfulfilled dream for the shuttler.”I am happy with whatever I have achieved although an Olympic medal is something that I would have loved to have,” said Gopi.Without doubt, the All England Championship in 2001 remains closest to his heart although he does admit that there are a number of other achievements as well that makes him happy even today.”Being crowned the All England Champion was certainly the biggest achievement for me as a player. But there are other title victories as well which remain very close to my heart.”There was a phase when I was really doing well and my rankings reached to fourth in the world. The Commonwealth Games gold and the final of the Thomas Cup in 1999 make me feel very proud.”advertisementAfter retiring as a player, Gopi’s love for the game saw him come up with a badminton academy where he trains aspiring shuttlers whenever he gets time from his national duties as the chief coach.His association with India’s top-ranked player Saina Nehwal is well known and her emergence has been closely monitored by Gopi.”Certainly, the profile of the game has improved than what it was when I used to play and we have some very promising players coming up.”PV Sindhu is definitely one of the stars to watch out for. Besides, P Kashyap, Ajay Jayaram and Guru Saidutt have already showed what they have in store. The future of badminton in India is surely very bright,” he felt.last_img read more

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National Boxing Championship: Paramjeet Samota overpowers Rambol, storm into semis

first_imgCommonwealth Games gold medallist Paramjeet Samota of Railways continued his winning streak as he overpowered Rambol of Madhya Pradesh to storm into the semi-finals in super heavyweight category at the 58th Senior Men’s National Boxing Championship in Chennai on Thursday. Samota will face Fateh Singh of Jharkhand in the semi-finals. In the 49kg category, 2009 Asian Championship silver medallist Services boxer Nanao Singh thrashed P Raghvan of Tamil Nadu 14-5 in quarter-final.last_img

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Ford Motor to launch EcoSport SUV at Delhi Auto Expo

first_imgFord Motor Co on Wednesday unveiled its new global sports utility vehicle (SUV) EcoSport and said it will invest $ 142 million (about Rs 784 crore) in its Chennai plant to facilitate manufacturing of the model for the domestic and export markets.”The EcoSport is the second of eight new global models that Ford plans to launch in India by the mid of this decade. We are packaging together new engine technology, quality and safety aimed at attracting a new generation of consumers in India and other global markets,” Alan Mulally, president and chief executive officer (CEO), Ford Motor Company, said.The company had launched New Ford Fiesta as its first global product portfolio for India.”Asia-Pacific in general and India in particular are very important markets for us. The global market is still robust and we expect about five per cent growth consecutively in the next two years. The Asia- Pacific market has slowed down a little bit but there is tremendous growth potential,” Mulally added.The company said that it was just a preview of the car ahead of the Auto Expo and the company’s wholly-owned arm, Ford India, will roll out the product in the market later this year.The EcoSport is based on the B-segment Fiesta platform. While the company has not disclosed the details of the product, saying it will be shared at the time of market launch, it said the EcoSport will be powered by a one-litre EcoBoost engine that has power of 120 HP and emits less than 140 gr/ km of CO2, which brings it on par with rivals’ conventional 1.6-litre petrol engines, the company said.advertisementAccording to Michael Boneha, president and managing director, Ford India, “We are investing $ 142 million in Chennai to produce that vehicle. This is part of our strategy to increasing our worldwide sales by nearly 50 per cent to take our annual global sales to eight million vehicles by 2015.”Boneha added that of this figure, 60 to 70 per cent sales are expected to come from the Asia-Pacific and Africa region. The all-new EcoSport will make its global debut in India and will be sold in 100 markets around the world.”The vehicle will expand Ford’s presence in Brazil, India, ASEAN markets and others to be announced at a later time, with world-class technology and quality, sharing the new B- class platform which is expected to sell more than two million units by mid-decade,” the company later said in a statement.last_img read more

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Hockey: Poland make India work hard for win

first_imgIndia suffered few anxious moments before emerging victorious 4-2 against Poland and sealed their spot in the final of the men’s hockey Olympic qualifier with a 100 per cent winning record on Friday.The hosts’ fifth consecutive win also paved the way for France’s entry into the title clash on Sunday.Sandeep Singh added another brace to his goal tally while fellow drag-flicker VR Raghunath and Shivendra Singh also found the target.Poland needed a draw against India in order to qualify for final after France held Canada to a 1-1 draw earlier in the day at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium.The Poles fought bravely and their goalkeeper Mariusz Chyla was the star performer for them.India’s matches have got tougher and tougher as the tournament has progressed and they will have a few things to work on before the all-important final, the winner of which will book a ticket to the London Olympics.For the first time in the qualifier, India went behind in the 13th minute when Tomasz Dutkiewicz took advantage of a clever dummy on their first penalty corner to beat rival skipper Bharat Chetri in goal.India had dominated proceedings till then with the action, more or less, concentrated in the Polish half. But the forward line of Shivendra Singh, Gurvinder Singh Chandi and Tushar Khandker were guilty of poor finishing. The Poles were dangerous on counter- attacks and the Indian defence was put under pressure on a few occasions.India’s first three penalty corners also did not bear fruit before Sandeep found the top left corner on the 26th minute.As always, India started the second half with a blitzkrieg but found it difficult to beat the Polish defence.India had to wait almost till the hour mark to take the lead when Sarvanjit Singh’s hit into the circle was deflected by Shivendra. But the lead was shortlived as Miroslaw Juszczak’s unstoppable drag- flick made it 2-2.With France’s fortunes also dependent on the last round-robin match, Raghunath put India ahead once again when he converted team’s eighth penalty corner with five minutes left.The Poles did not lose heart but Sandeep added the finishing touches to the game with another deadly flick in the last action of the game.Chief coach Michael Nobbs was not happy with the team’s finishing.”Our movement and intensity was excellent. The forwards got into good positions, but the finishing was not up to the mark,” the Australian said.Nobbs was effusive in his praise for the Polish goalkeeper. “He is one of the best in the world. We had 44 circle penetrations and 14 shots, but he stood tall,” he said. India beat France 6-2 earlier in the competition, but Nobbs expects a tighter match on Sunday.”It is a grand final. It won’t be the same as the earlier matches. We will analyse the French team tomorrow,” he added.advertisementlast_img read more

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‘Rested’ Umesh Yadav gets into groove ahead of IPL rigour

first_imgAfter the arduous tour of Australia, fast bowler Umesh Yadav was given a ‘rest’ from the Asia Cup in Bangladesh in order for him to recuperate from the grind of nearly three months.Nearly 20 days of rest later, the Vidarbha pacer was presented with an opportunity to play for Central Zone in the Deodhar Trophy one-dayers and Umesh, after consulting coach Subroto Banerjee, decided to get some bowling under his belt before joining the Delhi Daredevils camp for the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) season.On Sunday, Central lost to North Zone in the semifinals in Dharamsala in a high-scoring match and Umesh returned unflattering figures of 10 overs, one for 68. It was Delhi pacer Parvinder Awana who scalped six wickets in the game, but Umesh was pleased to have played two matches in ‘mild’ conditions before the IPL.”Once I was picked for the Deodhar match, I was asked if I could play. I consulted my coach (Subroto Banerjee) and I felt that I needed to play at least a couple of games. I felt I had got enough rest after the Australia tour and needed some match practice,” Umesh told Mail Today on Sunday.”The climate in Dharamsala and Chandigarh was easy on the body. The wicket was good and the weather was pleasant. Now I will be preparing for the camp ahead of the IPL.” His coach Banerjee said that it was good that Umesh got to play in Dharamsala and not in the steamy conditions of Dhaka.advertisement”When we had a chat about playing in the Deodhar Trophy, I told him it was better for him. As you don’t have to put in so much effort, as one would have to in an international game, it would be easier on his body,” the former India pacer told Mail Today .”Fatigue is always there. But one shouldn’t rest too much. As long as you are fit, it’s fine.” Assessing the 24-year-old’s performance in Australia, Banerjee said the spell in the second innings of the first Test in Melbourne shall remain etched in his mind.”On the eve of that innings, he promised me that he would wreak havoc. And that is exactly what he did (picking four wickets). It was one hostile spell,” he said.But the coach was also aware of the propensity of the pacer to leak runs almost every time he bowls.”That’s an area we are working on. He has this tendency of bowling attacking lines, but in some matches he has leaked a lot of runs. Consistency in length is very crucial and we will be working on that. But overall, he has shaped up well. He is attacking all the time and even the captain (Mahendra Singh Dhoni) said that he wanted Umesh to not worry about runs but go for wickets.”The form and fitness of Umesh is very crucial for Indian pace bowling prospects as Zaheer Khan doesn’t look like the force he once was, Ishant Sharma’s fitness remains a mystery and Varun Aaron is still struggling with a back injury.ajit.vijaykumar@mailtoday.inlast_img read more

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IPL sport-fixing: BCCI inquiry committee meets Shalabh Srivastava

first_imgThe BCCI on Wednesday began the probe into the spot-fixing scandal that has rocked the cash-rich IPL with one of the suspended domestic players Shalabh Srivastava deposing before the Inquiry Commission.Barely a day after the BCCI cracked the whip by suspending five tainted players in the wake of the television sting operation which claimed to expose corruption in IPL, Ravi Sawani, who is heading the inquiry commission, met Srivastava to hear his side of the story on the sting operation.The meeting, which took place at a five-star hotel, is learnt to have lasted for an hour.There was, however, no official word from the BCCI on the development.Sawani, a former chief of the ICC’s Anti-Corruption and Security Unit (ACSU), has been asked to submit his report to the BCCI’s Discplinary Committee within 15 days. Sawani is now the chief of the BCCI’s Anti-Corruption unit.Apart from Srivastava, the BCCI had yesterday suspended Mohnish Mishra, T P Sudhindra, Amit Yadav and Abhinav Bali with immediate effect pending inquiry. The decision was taken after a lengthy tele-conference of top BCCI officials and members of the IPL’s Governing Council.The Cricket Board had swung into action a day after the expose as the issue rocked Parliament and former players and cricket administrators called for strong action to rid the game of even a whiff of a scandal.Sawani will meet the other four suspended players in the coming days before finalising his report, a top BCCI source said.Television channel India TV had on Monday claimed to have blown the lid off “murky deals” in the IPL among players, organisers, owners and big guns of Indian cricket.The TV sting operation which was aired at prime time yesterday created a flutter in the Indian cricket establishment prompting the BCCI to react quickly.The channel had claimed it had done a sting operation in which many players confessed on hidden camera they get much more than their prescribed auction under the table.According to the channel, its operation also revealed that spot-fixing is not only prevalent in IPL but also that first class matches are fixed and women played an important role in match-fixing.The IPL’s Governing Council had sought video footage from the TV channel and is understood to have scrutinised the tapes before taking the decision of suspending the players.Srivastava, who deposed before the Commission today, is a left-arm seamer from Uttar Pradesh and was India’s highest wicket-taker at the Under-19 World Cup in Sri Lanka in 2000. After severing ties with ICL team Delhi Giants, Srivastava was signed up by Kings XI Punjab in 2011.Four of the five players suspended had played in the rebel Indian Cricket League.advertisementlast_img read more

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Raptors’ Kyle Lowry makes $1 million donation to Villanova

first_imgToronto Raptors’ Kyle Lowry (7) during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Brooklyn Nets, Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)PHILADELPHIA — When Villanova officials first contacted Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry about making a $1 million donation to his alma mater, he was skeptical.“A million dollars?” Lowry recalled saying.ADVERTISEMENT BeautyMNL open its first mall pop-up packed with freebies, discounts, and other exclusives Do we want to be champions or GROs? – Sotto LATEST STORIES MOST READ ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ SEA Games: PH still winless in netball after loss to Thais View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. NCAA volleyball: Lady Chiefs drop a set, but improve to 4-0 ‘We cannot afford to fail’ as SEA Games host – Duterte PH military to look into China’s possible security threat to power grid When he found out the money would be used for upgrades to the Pavillion, the facility where he spends the offseason working out, he quickly came around.“If I wasn’t there every day, if I wasn’t around the players and using the facilities as much as I do, it would be a little different,” Lowry said. “But this place I call home. I’m literally here all summer, so it was easy.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingThe school announced the largest donation by a former Villanova basketball player on Monday, a few hours before the Raptors faced the Philadelphia 76ers in Lowry’s hometown. Villanova’s locker room will be named after Lowry, who spent two seasons with the Wildcats before leaving for the NBA as a first-round pick of the Memphis Grizzlies in 2006.“It’s not about the money, it’s about family,” Lowry said. “I’m able to give back to this great university that helped me get to where I am: 31 years old, three-time All-Star, wife and kids, married. I know it’s crazy, right?” Villanova coach Jay Wright attended the announcement at Wells Fargo Center, where the top-ranked Wildcats are playing this season while their home court undergoes a $60 million renovation.“Kyle has done so much to make us proud,” Wright said. “A generous gift like this is really impactful to the entire university, to all athletes.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Gameslast_img read more

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Unseeded Filipina Alex Eala rules tennis tilt in France

first_imgBeautyMNL open its first mall pop-up packed with freebies, discounts, and other exclusives Noskova, the seventh seed who took out top seeded Russian Diana Schnaider in the quarterfinals, seized the tight first set before Eala, the top singles player in the under-14 age bracket based on the Asian Tennis Federation rankings, struck back and evened up matters.With match going down the wire, the 12-year-old Eala cashed in on a Noskova error to close out her rival and write history as the 36th girls champion of the celebrated tournament.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingEala, a wildcard recipient and part of 2017 Tennis Europe Junior Tour Doubles Team of the year, defeated Belgian qualifier Sofia Costoulas in the preliminaries before beating unseeded Japanese Kyoka Kubo and Hungarian 13th seed Katerina Dimitrova to set up the finale against Noskova.Eala said she would be ready in time for the grand slam juniors in May.“I need to build my ITF ranking to qualify for the grand slams,” said Eala. ‘We cannot afford to fail’ as SEA Games host – Duterte Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games: PH still winless in netball after loss to Thais LATEST STORIES Smash hit? Tesla suffers broken glass mishap at launch of new truck PLAY LIST 01:08Smash hit? Tesla suffers broken glass mishap at launch of new truck02:37Even in death, Uighurs feel long reach of Chinese state00:50Trending Articles02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Do we want to be champions or GROs? – Sotto Pumaren gets the win over former player Pasaol in PBA D-League Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Playing fantastic form, Alex Eala has made a name in the international tennis scene.The unseeded Filipina ruled the Les Petits As-Le Mondial Lacoste in Tarbes, France by capturing the girls singles title at the expense of Czech tennis wonder Linda Noskova in a 5-7, 6-3, 7-6 (5) cliffhanger.ADVERTISEMENT PH military to look into China’s possible security threat to power grid Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ MOST READ ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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Racal, Cruz take blame for Alaska loss to NLEX

first_imgEthel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ SEA Games: PH still winless in netball after loss to Thais That play ultimately dashed Alaska’s hopes of completing the come-from-behind victory as NLEX held on, 96-89.Despite the tough defeat, both forwards believe that the Aces could only draw positives from this loss as they gear towards the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup playoffs.“This is a wake up call for us that nothing comes easy,” said Cruz. “Every game, we really have to work for it. We came from a six-game winning streak and we’re up there, so it humbles us that from the start of the game, we have to keep on grinding.”“We just have play our game. The coaches will always be there to remind us what we should and should not do,” Racal said.Alaska, which saw its six-game winning run end, faces San Miguel next Saturday in Batangas.ADVERTISEMENT Do we want to be champions or GROs? – Sotto ‘We cannot afford to fail’ as SEA Games host – Duterte BeautyMNL open its first mall pop-up packed with freebies, discounts, and other exclusives MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next PH military to look into China’s possible security threat to power grid FEU, UST retain UAAP athletics titlescenter_img Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims PBA IMAGESFighting back from 30 points down, Alaska had a chance to force overtime with 11.6 seconds on the clock with NLEX.Coach Alex Compton sued for time and devised a play which he felt could have given the Aces an opportunity to tie the game at 92.ADVERTISEMENT But Alaska blew it after Kevin Racal and Carl Bryan Cruz couldn’t complete and inbound play.“It was my mistake because I immediately passed it to Bryan while he wasn’t looking,” said Racal, who had no second thoughts in owning up for the gaffe.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingCruz also took responsibility for the endgame blunder, which was off a play they’ve been practicing for a while.“The ball was really going to me. We were practicing for that play, but NLEX had a better defense,” he said. “When I gave JVee (Casio) a back pick, Larry Fonacier was able to bump me which delayed me from getting to the ball. If I wasn’t bumped, KRacs’ pass would have been perfect.” Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games LATEST STORIES Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim View commentslast_img read more

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Cummins, Starc added to Australia’s ODI squad; Johnson rested

first_imgPacemen Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc have been recalled to Australia’s squad for the remaining three limited-overs internationals against South Africa, while selectors gave Mitchell Johnson a rest and decided against drafting in a batsman to replace injured captain Michael Clarke.The 21-year-old Cummins returns to the national squad for the first time since June 2012, and Starc is on the comeback from a groin strain. Johnson, unveiled last week as the 2014 international cricketer of the year, played the first two ODIs in Perth but will take a break ahead of the Test series against India starting December 4.Australia selector Rod Marsh said there was enough batting depth in the squad to cover for Clarke without calling in reinforcements. George Bailey is standing in as captain for Clarke, who re-injured his left hamstring while batting in the series-opening win and is now in doubt for the Test series against India.Marsh said there was still a chance Clarke could return in time for the Tests against India, and coach Darren Lehmann said he wouldn’t know until his skipper had more medical advice.”At the moment, he’s captain of Australia and, if he’s fit to play and gets through the next little bit, then hopefully he’ll front up in the first Test,” Lehmann said.South Africa won on Sunday to level the ODI series, which now heads to Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney.Cummins has played one Test, five ODIs and 14 T20 internationals for Australia and is considered a potential long-term leader of the attack. His international career started promisingly when he took seven wickets on Test debut in a series-leveling win in South Africa in 2011 at the age of 18. But the tall, right-arm fast bowler has been sidelined for long periods since then with lower back problems.advertisementXavier Doherty was drafted in to the squad as the spin specialist, preferred to regular Test offspinner Nathan Lyon. Matthew Wade retained his spot as wicketkeeper in the absence of injured vice-captain Brad Haddin.Squad: George Bailey (captain), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Xavier Doherty, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Shane Watson.last_img read more

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Bangladesh ignore Abdur Razzak from 15-member World Cup squad

first_imgBangladesh named a 15-member squad for this year’s World Cup on Sunday, leaving out experienced left-arm spinner Abdur Razzak. The Bangladesh selection panel, led by Faruque Ahmed, included Soumya Sarkar, Taijul Islam and Sabbir Rahman who all made their debuts in the series against Zimbabwe in November and December.Pace spearhead Mashrafe Bin Mortaza missed the last World Cup due to injury but this time will lead the side. Allrounder Shakib Al Hasan will act as his deputy.Just five players – Tamim Iqbal, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Mahmudullah and Rubel Hossain – survived from the 2011 World Cup squad. Razzak, with 20 wickets to his name over the past two tournaments, remains Bangladesh’s top World Cup wicket taker. He also has taken 207 ODI wickets for Bangladesh.Bangladesh have been drawn in Pool A, along with Afghanistan, hosts Australia and New Zealand, England, Scotland and Sri Lanka. They will open their tournament against Afghanistan on February 18 at Canberra.Bangladesh squad: Mashrafe Bin Mortaza (capt), Shakib Al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal, Anamul Haque, Mominul Hoque, Mushfiqur Rahim, Mahmudullah, Nasir Hossain, Shabbir Rahaman, Soumya Sarkar, Rubel Hossain, Taskin Ahmed, Al Amin Hossain, Taijul Islam, Arafat Sunny.last_img read more

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Watch: 5 controversial videos of Andrew Symonds

first_imgAustralia’s Andrew Symonds at Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados on June 8, 2008. Photo: ReutersThe India Today guest editor for today, Australian all rounder Andrew Symonds is no stranger to controversy. In his short career of international cricket, Symonds became famous not only for his aggressive cricket, but also for the numerous controversies that his name was dragged into.The most famous of them all saw Symonds facing off with Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh and Indian pacer Ishant Sharma.Not only that, he’s also known for the famous incident where he tackled a streaker and brought him to the ground before anyone else could react.Here’s a look at some of the incidents:last_img read more

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Bringing women into the forefront

first_imgA lot has been discussed about PM Modi’s first year in office. Report cards, grades, polls and other rituals of assessing performance have been dominating the public discourse. While actions and policies on economy, security, external affairs, ‘Make in India’ are being deliberated upon extensively, there is little attention on how the government has fared on its traditional battleground: gender equity.HistoricalModi’s speech on Independence Day was historical in highlighting an incumbent government’s commitment to women safety and empowerment. Unfortunately, a conspicuously masculine new national executive body of the BJP constituted by Amit Shah comes up as an unmistakable irony.While one year is not enough to mitigate centuries of exploitation and disenfranchisement, the PM must realise the issue needs to be tackled on a war footing and not delegated to the Ministry of Woman and Child Welfare. A gender sensitive approach needs to be adopted by all the ministries internally as well as at the level of policy making. Some ministries particularly have their tasks cut out for them. To begin with, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry under Nirmala Sitharaman can put its weight behind eradicating human trafficking.As per a 2007 report from the Ministry of Women & Child Development, the presence of female ‘sex workers’ in India is over 3 million. Out of these, 35.47% of them enter the trade before the age of 18. The magnitude of the problem of sex trafficking and prostitution is increasing and worsening in India. The number of girls and women being pulled into prostitution is on the rise while their age at entry is decreasing.advertisementNatural calamities like the recent Nepal earthquake are a boon to the hawkish traffickers. With the destruction of livelihood and habitation, women’s vulnerabilities increase manifold.With the Companies Act, 2013 mandating Corporate Social Responsibility for big corporate houses, a lot can be achieved in this field. It is noteworthy however, that while issues like education, public health, AIDS etc have been covered in the Schedule VII of the act as potential areas for CSR, there is no mention of human trafficking.By specifying human trafficking as a key area, systematic efforts can be made to combat the menace. Other ministries like Rural Development, Panchayati Raj, Urban Development, and Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation can come together for a comprehensive solution by beginning with minimising vulnerabilities of potential victims.Another ministry that needs gender balanced policies is Defence Minsiter Parrikar’s recent dismissal of the idea of inducting women in combat roles is not in keeping with the modern outlook our Prime Minister espouses. The armed forces need dedicated soldiers – men or women. Cultural taboos restricting women’s greater participation in the services need to be discarded as a policy prerogative. The government must look at deliverables like entry for women as fighter pilots, minor design changes in warships for welcoming women in the Navy, uniform commission and promotion policy for achieving a gender balanced environment in the armed forces.AccessThe HRD Ministry along with the ministries of Women and Child Development, Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, Youth Affairs and Sports, must pay special attention to providing women access to necessary means for their financial empowerment.Gender based synergy in these ministries will lead to improved performance and eliminate duplication of schemes. The government may not need cost-cutting measures then. Maneka Gandhi’s dissenton federal spending in the social sector is crucial. In the capacity of a cabinet minister, she has drawn her government’s attention to the dangers of shortfalls in social welfare schemes. One cannot help making this into a textbook example while demanding for women’s increased participation in governance. Gandhi’s refusal to toe the line, and thus highlighting her commitment to the job at hand, is a magnified reflection of the actions of our women representatives at panchayats. Several studies show that women sarpanches fare remarkably well in the field of social development.PatriarchyThis brings us to the Women’s Reservation Bill. The bill was passed by the Rajya Sabha during the UPA government. Soon afterwards, Modi became PM and it was expected that the long pending bill would be passed. Why it is stuck? Responding to my question during a TV debate, Amit Shah assured of an early resolution on the bill. He shared the opinions of voices of dissent on the matter. How the present government turns naysayers into allies over this issue to get the bill passed remains to be seen. A majority government comes with many privileges so why not use them to address pressing societal concerns? Patriarchy has long been reigning in India.advertisementIt is high time that women empowerment became a policy matter. Social attitudes will fall in line once the government makes its own intent clear through action. Zero tolerance for gender related violence, discrimination and harassment as a national policy will percolate into the society at large. Let this government set an example and then we can celebrate.(The writer researches on Gender at the Observer Research Foundation)last_img read more

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Minnows Guam stun higher-ranked India in World Cup qualifiers

first_imgThere is a point after which the word embarrassment does not do justice while describing repeated debacles. The Indian football team must be having the same feeling after a humiliating 1-2 loss against minnows Guam in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers on Tuesday.For the tiny Pacific island, with one-tenth of the Delhi population, it was their second triumph in the qualifiers. But for the Stephen Constantine-coached side, the away loss meant they continue their string of poor performances that have become routine in the last couple of years. India had lost 1-2 to Oman in their previous World Cup Group D qualifier in Bengaluru last week.More than the defeat, it was the manner in which India went down to Guam, ranked 33 places below them at 174, at Hagatna which rankled. After the hosts had taken the lead through Brandon McDonald in the 37th minute, they doubled their advantage through Travis Nicklaw (62nd min). India could only half the deficit through captain Sunil Chhetri in injury time, his 50th international goal.The only other genuine chance that India could come up with was when substitute Jeje Lalpekhlua’s header in the 88th minute went straight into goalkeeper Douglas Herrick’s arms.After the debacle, Constantine was left to rue the lack of football knowledge in his players. “We lacked football intelligence in key moments of the game and that cost us,” he said. “The difference was visible between a group of players who have the best football education and the rest. 75 per cent of Guam players have been born and brought up in the US and that made a huge difference.”advertisementAgreed that Constantine is only four matches old in his second stint as India coach but the Briton coach needs to find a solution to India’s problems up front. In the four matches in the qualifiers so far against Nepal, (home and away), Oman and Guam, Chhetri has been the lone scorer.If in a team of 11 players, the responsibility of scoring falls on only one player, then more such humiliations can be expected.Constantine has given 13 players their debut in the last four matches. Obviously, he has a plan in mind but he can’t be reckless and try to change too many things too quickly.Constantine’s boys next face Iran, Asia’s top-ranked side, on September 8 in Bengaluru and if there was a need to pull up their socks it is now. If India can’t finish third in the five-team group, they wouldn’t qualify automatically for the 2019 Asian Cup.last_img read more

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Government apprehensive as Mudgal report nails dope-tainted coach Yuri Ogorodnik

first_imgEven as the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) has received the approval from the Sports Ministry regarding the recall of dope-tainted coach Yuri Ogorodnik, doubts have arisen over the claims by authorities that the Ukrainian was exonerated by every panel concerned in the 2011 doping scandal.Ogorodnik was shunted out of the country when six of India’s top women quarter-milers training under him tested positive in 2011. Three of them had figured in the gold-medal winning relay teams in the 2010 Commonwealth Games and Asian Games.After its earlier reservations to hire Ogorodnik, the ministry had agreed to the demands of the AFI.The AFI has time and again insisted that nothing was found against Ogorodnik by any of the committees that looked into the doping scam of six athletes, including Ashwini Akkunji, Mandeep Kaur and Sini Jose who were each handed two-year for failing dope tests.In fact, the federation has been claiming that India has the best chance of winning a medal in the women’s 4x400m relay at next year’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro if Ogorodnik could be made available to train the team.Surprisingly, the ministry and the SAI seem to have accepted the AFI’s contention and not gone into the preliminary report of the Justice Mukul Mudgal committee that went into the doping episode. The Mudgal report did raise enough doubts about the coach’s role for the ministry at least to be wary of his recall.The Mudgal report has mentioned three documents recovered from the coach’s room.advertisement”The first was a document containing instructions for the consumption of food supplements and bearing the date 18.05-28.05. The point 3 of the said document has ‘Testosteron 5%’ written on it. The second document containing a tabular chart, presumably a food supplement chart with the names of the supplements written on it. It has the words ‘2002 Asian Busan’ inscribed on the upper right corner. One of the food supplements mentioned on the left hand side is marked simply as ‘White Tablet’,” Mudgal stated in his report.The third document included the usage of Ginseng Kianpi, the supplement that was eventually found to have been contaminated with the banned steroids, methandienone and stanozolol.Ogorodnik, the report said, disowned the document that contained reference to testosterone and told the panel that the one which referred to ‘white tablet’ might have been an old supplements programme. He admitted that the third one, related to use of Ginseng, was prepared by him.Mudgal was critical of Ogorodnik in his report. “It can be stated that the coach has been negligent in purchasing the supplements? in China as he did not verify whether the content in the supplements had banned substances,” the report stated.Mudgal noted that a general “research on Ginseng Kianpi pills would induce doubts on the approval and usage of such supplements as information available suggests that these pills contain banned substances.”last_img read more

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