SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
S P O R T S

Pathan, Akmal shine on day one
Karachi, January 29
Kamran Akmal struck a century to lead a remarkable revival following Irfan Pathan’s sensational hat-trick as Pakistan made amends for their low first innings total by scalping four top Indian batsmen to leave the series-deciding cricket Test evenly poised here today.
Irfan Pathan celebrates with team-mates after dismissing Pakistani batsman Younis Khan on the first day of the third Test at the National Stadium in Karachi on Sunday
Irfan Pathan celebrates with team-mates after dismissing Pakistani batsman Younis Khan on the first day of the third Test at the National Stadium in Karachi on Sunday. — AFP photo

No place for Ganguly in one-day squad
Mumbai, January 29
The national selectors today ignored Sourav Ganguly from a 15-member Indian squad for the one-day cricket series against Pakistan, putting a big question mark on the one-day future of the Bengal stalwart.

Gilchrist stars in Aussie win
Melbourne, January 29
Adam Gilchrist hit his 13th one-day century to guide Australia to a six-wicket victory over Sri Lanka in their triangular series one-day match in Perth today. Gilchrist smashed 116 and combined with Simon Katich (82) in a 191-run opening partnership to ensure Australia passed Lanka’s 233 for eight with nine overs to spare. The victory virtually guaranteed Australia a place in the finals. They have 18 points, while Lanka have nine and South Africa eight.

Kaif puts UP on top
Mumbai, January 29
Mohammad Kaif scored a fluent 92 to help Uttar Pradesh reach 299 for three on the opening day of the Ranji Trophy final against Bengal at Lucknow today.


Pakistan’s Kamran Akmal raises his bat and helmet after completing a century on the first day of the third Test against India in Karachi on Sunday
Pakistan’s Kamran Akmal raises his bat and helmet after completing a century on the first day of the third Test against India in Karachi on Sunday. — AFP

EARLIER STORIES
 

Federer outplays Baghdatis for title
Melbourne, January 29
Top seed Roger Federer overcame an early scare to ease past Marcos Baghdatis 5-7, 7-5, 6-0, 6-2 today to win the Australian Open for the second time while capturing his seventh Grand Slam title. The unflappable Swiss rebounded from a nervous start when he dropped the first set with a string of unforced errors, then trailed 0-2 in the second, to run away with the match and end Baghdatis’ magical odyssey.



Roger Federer of Switzerland holds the Australian Open men’s singles trophy after defeating Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus in the final in Melbourne on Sunday. — Reuters photo

Roger Federer of Switzerland holds the Australian Open men’s singles trophy after defeating Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus in the final in Melbourne on Sunday

Meteoric rise of a giant-killer
Melbourne, January 29
Marcos Baghdatis is only 20 but has displayed remarkable composure to burst into big-time tennis here and become a shooting star despite losing to Roger Federer in the Australian Open final.

Bhupathi wins 10th Grand Slam crown
Melbourne, January 29
Mahesh Bhupathi captured his 10th Grand Slam title and third mixed doubles crown on the trot after he won the Australian Open title with Switzerland’s Martina Hingis here today.Bhupathi and Hingis defeated Daniel Nestor of Canada and Russia’s Elena Likhovtseva 6-3 6-3 in the final at Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne Park. It was the sixth mixed doubles win with six different partners for Bhupathi who won at Wimbledon and US Open with Mary Pierce and Daniela Hantuchova, respectively, last year.

Lions enter final despite defeat
Chandigarh, January 29
Bangalore Lions entered the best-of-three final of the Premier Hockey League despite losing to Sher-e-Jallandhar 3-4 in their last league encounter at the Sector 42 Hockey Stadium here tonight. The Lions will take on Chandigarh Dynamos in the first final tomorrow.

A Date With PHL
All is not well with umpiring 

Chandigarh, January 29
The bane of Indian hockey has been its umpiring. It may sound a little harsh but it is one area that has been greatly responsible for many a good match being spoiled for “bad or unpalatable” decisions.

Atwal tied eighth, Chopra slips
San Diego, January 29
Arjun Atwal ran into problems with his putter but remained calm to come back with a one-under 71 in the third round on the tough South Course at Torrey Pines and stay in sight of a top-10 finish at the Buick Invitational.


More than 80 classic coutures of Rolls Royce, Pacard, Austin and other models ramped on the road of pink city, Jaipur.
(28k, 56k)

Punjabi University win cycling trophy
Patiala, January 29
Punjabi University, Patiala, clinched the overall trophy in the men’s section for a record eighth successive time as the curtains came down on the All-India Inter-University Cycling Championship at the Punjabi University velodrome here today.

Air-India hold East Bengal
Kolkata, January 29
East Bengal paid for a slow and unimaginative attack to settle for a goalless draw against their less fancied rivals Air-India in the National Football League match at the Salt Lake Stadium here today.

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Pathan, Akmal shine on day one
S.S. Ramaswamy

Karachi, January 29
Kamran Akmal struck a century to lead a remarkable revival following Irfan Pathan’s sensational hat-trick as Pakistan made amends for their low first innings total by scalping four top Indian batsmen to leave the series-deciding cricket Test evenly poised here today.

In a dramatic opening day, the hosts were reduced to a precarious 39 for six before the diminutive Akmal salvaged the situation with a counter-attacking knock of 113 to steer Pakistan to a much more competitive first innings total of 245.

The Indians were themselves in a spot of bother, struggling at 74 for four at stumps on an eventful day which saw 14 wickets tumble on a grassy and seaming track at the National Stadium.

Sourav Ganguly (9) and Yuvraj Singh (7) were at the crease after the visitors lost the prized scalps of captain Rahul Dravid (3), Virender Sehwag (5), V.V.S Laxman (19) and Sachin Tendulkar (23) cheaply to surrender the advantage.

The series-decider got off to a sensational start as Pathan (5/61) sent back Salman Butt, in-form Younis Khan and Mohammad Yousuf in the first over to become only the second Indian to record a Test hat-trick. The only previous hat-trick was taken by Harbhajan Singh against Australia in Kolkata in 2001.

After the batsmen had a field day on featherbed tracks in the first two drawn Tests in Lahore and Faisalabad, it were the bowlers who hit back with a vengeance on a track which provided a lot of assistance to the quickies, particularly in the first hour’s play.

Dravid opted to field after winning the toss and his bowlers responded brilliantly by running through the Pakistani top order within the first 11 overs before Akmal and Abdul Razzaq (45) rescued the team with a 115-run seventh wicket stand.

Pakistan, who suffered a major blow with the pull-out of their unfit captain Inzamam-ul-Haq in the morning, were punch-drunk at 0 for 3 and then 39 for six.

Pathan leapfrogged into cricket history by becoming the first to claim a hat-trick in the very first over of a Test, his wicket-taking balls were from fourth to sixth.

Pathan's was the 36th hat-trick feat in the history of Test cricket and he became the 33rd bowler, and the only one from India apart from current teammate Harbhajan Singh, to claim this feat.

It was the first time ever that a hat-trick was taken in the very first over of the match, bettering the record of Nuwan Zoysa of Sri Lanka who had claimed the feat in the second over of the match against Zimbabwe at Harare in 2000-01.

Scoreboard

Pakistan (1st innings)

Butt c Dravid b Pathan 0

Farhat c Dhoni b R.P. Singh 22

Younis lbw Pathan 0

Yousuf b Pathan 0

Iqbal lbw Zaheer 5

Afridi b Zaheer 10

Razzaq lbw R.P. Singh 45

Akmal c Dhoni b Pathan 113

Akhtar c Yuvraj b Pathan 45

Asif c Laxman b R.P. Singh 0

Kaneria not out 0

Extras (lb-2, nb-1, w-2) 5

Total (all out, 60.1 overs) 245

Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-0, 3-0, 4-13, 5-37, 6-39, 7-154, 8-236, 9-245.

Bowling: Pathan 17.1-4-61-5, Zaheer 15-2-75-2, R.P. Singh 16-1-66-3, Ganguly 2-0-9-0, Kumble 10-1-32-0.

India (1st innings)

Laxman b Asif 19

Dravid c Akmal b Asif 3

Sehwag c Akmal b Shoaib 5

Tendulkar b Razzaq 23

Ganguly not out 9

Yuvraj not out 7

Extras (lb-1, nb-7) 8

Total (4 wickets, 16 overs) 74

Fall of wickets: 1-9, 2-14, 3-56, 4-56.

Bowling: Shoaib 6-1-26-1, Asif 7-0-29-2, Razzaq 3-1-18-1. — PTI

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No place for Ganguly in one-day squad

Mumbai, January 29
The national selectors today ignored Sourav Ganguly from a 15-member Indian squad for the one-day cricket series against Pakistan, putting a big question mark on the one-day future of the Bengal stalwart.

The left-hander, who has been left out of the one-day outfit since returning from the tour of Zimbabwe in September last year, was again cold-shouldered by the selectors who recalled speedster Zaheer Khan for the series beginning from February 6.

Zaheer, who missed India’s last two one-day series, replaced Railways’ J.P. Yadav in the only change from the squad that drew 2-2 with South Africa in November last year.

“We decided to retain the combination that played against Sri Lanka and South Africa. This is the best team that we have chosen,” selection committee chairman Kiran More told reporters after announcing the team.

More said Ganguly’s name was discussed but eventually it was decided to retain the winning combination.

India are slated to play the matches at Peshawar (Feb 6), Rawalpindi (Feb 11), Lahore (Feb 13), Multan (Feb 16) and Karachi (Feb 19).

Team: Rahul Dravid (captain), Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Mohd Kaif, Suresh Raina, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Gautam Gambhir, Irfan Pathan, Ajit Agarkar, Zaheer Khan, R P Singh, Murali Kartik, Harbhajan Singh, S Sreesanth. — PTI 

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Gilchrist stars in Aussie win

Melbourne, January 29
Adam Gilchrist hit his 13th one-day century to guide Australia to a six-wicket victory over Sri Lanka in their triangular series one-day match in Perth today.
Gilchrist smashed 116 and combined with Simon Katich (82) in a 191-run opening partnership to ensure Australia passed Lanka’s 233 for eight with nine overs to spare. The victory virtually guaranteed Australia a place in the finals. They have 18 points, while Lanka have nine and South Africa eight.

Gilchrist, captaining the side in the absence of the rested Ricky Ponting, destroyed the Lankan attack with 11 boundaries and four sixes off 105 balls on his home ground.

Earlier, Mahela Jayawardene (69) and Russel Arnold (56) were involved in a 121-run partnership for Sri Lanka after an early collapse.

Brief scores: Sri Lanka: 233 for 8 in 50 overs (Jayawardene 69, Arnold 56; Stuart Clark 2-40, Lee 2-42); Australia: 231 for 4 in 41 overs (Gilchrist 116, Katich 82; Vaas 2-40) — Reuters 

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Kaif puts UP on top

Mumbai, January 29
Mohammad Kaif scored a fluent 92 to help Uttar Pradesh reach 299 for three on the opening day of the Ranji Trophy final against Bengal at Lucknow today.
Kaif, who was today included in the team for the upcoming one-day series against Pakistan, put on 123 for the second wicket with opener Shiva Kant Shukla (71) and 63 with left-hander Suresh Raina (61 not out) for the third wicket.

Skipper Kaif struck nine fours and two sixes in his 158-ball stay after the hosts opted to bat. At stumps, Raina and Rizwan Shamshad (18) were at the crease.

The hosts are aiming for their first title in three final appearances.

Brief scores: Uttar Pradesh (1st innings) 299 for three in 90 overs (Kaif 92, Shukla 71, Raina 61 n.o.). — Reuters

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Federer outplays Baghdatis for title

Melbourne, January 29
Top seed Roger Federer overcame an early scare to ease past Marcos Baghdatis 5-7, 7-5, 6-0, 6-2 today to win the Australian Open for the second time while capturing his seventh Grand Slam title.

The unflappable Swiss rebounded from a nervous start when he dropped the first set with a string of unforced errors, then trailed 0-2 in the second, to run away with the match and end Baghdatis’ magical odyssey.

The unseeded Cypriot had captured the imagination of tennis fans the world over with his fairytale run to the championship match, but was unable to keep pace with Federer once the world number one raised his game.

Federer won 11 games in a row between the second and fourth sets, then broke Baghdatis’ serve to seal victory and become the first man since Pete Sampras in 1993-94 to win three consecutive Grand Slam titles.

Federer won Wimbledon and the US Open last year and if he wins the French Open final in June, he will become the first man since Australian Rod Laver in 1969 to hold all four Grand Slam titles.

The 24-year-old Federer also joined American Richard Sears and Briton Will Renshaw as the only men to win their first seven Grand Slam finals. Sears and Renshaw both achieved the feat in the 1880s.

The 20-year-old Baghdatis made a confident start in his first Grand Slam final, breaking Federer’s serve in the fifth game then again in the 11th game after handing back the initial break.

He skipped out to a 2-0 lead in the second set as an unusually error-prone Federer struggled to find his rhythm before the wheels suddenly fell off the Cypriot’s challenge.

Federer got back on level terms as mistakes started to creep into his opponent’s game, winning the second set off an unforced mistake, then stormed through the third set in 24 minutes.

An early break in the fourth set gave Federer a 3-0 lead and although Baghdatis held serve to end an 11-game losing streak, his body gave in before his mind did.

He had beaten three top-10 players in Andy Roddick, Ivan Ljubicic and David Nalbandian just to reach the final, but the effort had taken a huge toll and he started to cramp up midway through the fourth set.

He received treatment to his left calf muscle and although he continued, Federer comfortably held his remaining service games to seal victory in two hours and 46 minutes. — Reuters

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Meteoric rise of a giant-killer

Melbourne, January 29
Marcos Baghdatis is only 20 but has displayed remarkable composure to burst into big-time tennis here and become a shooting star despite losing to Roger Federer in the Australian Open final.

Before the tournament, he was little known. Now he is on his way to the top after reaching the Melbourne Park showpiece against all the odds through hard work and self-belief.

It was very nearly a storybook finish to a remarkable two weeks in which he has beaten a raft of seeds, including Radek Stepanek (17), Andy Roddick (2), Ivan Ljubicic (7) and David Nalbandian (4) before Federer taught him a lesson.

For the pony-tailed and unseeded Baghdatis, it has been a hard slog to realise his ambition.

He began playing tennis aged five with his brothers Marinos and Petros, who both went on to play Davis Cup for Cyprus.

He quit at eight to focus on football, his other great passion, but had a racquet in his hand again by 10.

At 13, his parents took the tough decision to send him to Paris to train at the Mouratoglou academy and he went on to win nine junior titles, becoming the number one ranked junior in the world in 2003.

“It was the worst day, one of the worst days of my life,” Baghdatis said of having to leave his family home for France.

“I was just crying all the way, and all the day I was crying with my father and just the only thing I wanted to do is go back and see my family, see my friends.

“It was tough, but I got through it. The first two, three months were very tough. I mean, I felt lonely, felt bad. Felt I wasn’t happy, I wasn't enjoying it.

“But then things happen. You just wake up one day and you realise, it’s life and you just want to go through it.

“I just woke up one day and I said, ‘Okay, I have no choice, stop crying, stop wandering around. You have no choice and you can do it. A lot of people believe in you,’ and that’s what I did.”

The experience steeled him for his steady climb through the rankings.

His service and forehand have been his biggest weapons, but he has also proved to have the game to mix it up and adapt, changing pace and lulling opponents into a false rhythm before exploding.

Add to that a perfect temperament and superb agility on court and a star was born. His boisterous, but good-natured supporters draped in the blue and white of Greece, added another element, lifting him. — AFP 

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Bhupathi wins 10th Grand Slam crown

Melbourne, January 29
Mahesh Bhupathi captured his 10th Grand Slam title and third mixed doubles crown on the trot after he won the Australian Open title with Switzerland’s Martina Hingis here today.

Bhupathi and Hingis defeated Daniel Nestor of Canada and Russia’s Elena Likhovtseva 6-3 6-3 in the final at Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne Park. It was the sixth mixed doubles win with six different partners for Bhupathi who won at Wimbledon and US Open with Mary Pierce and Daniela Hantuchova, respectively, last year.

The Indian star won the French Open with Rika Hiraki in 1997, paired with Ai Sugiyama to triumph at the US Open in 1999 and partnered Likhovtseva, his rival today, to win Wimbledon in 2002.

He also has four men’s doubles titles under his belt.

For Hingis, the win completed a grand comeback after a three-year lay-off. It was the 15th career Grand Slam win and the first in mixed doubles for the Swiss Miss.

She has won five singles titles and nine women’s doubles crowns.

“If everyone was asking me why I came back, these are definitely the occasions,” Hingis said after the victory.

“To Mahesh, thank you very much. You took a huge risk because no one was sure how good I was going to be, thanks for taking the courage and playing with me,” said Hingis, for whom it was the eighth victory in Melbourne today. — PTI

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Lions enter final despite defeat
G.S. Paul
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
Bangalore Lions entered the best-of-three final of the Premier Hockey League despite losing to Sher-e-Jallandhar 3-4 in their last league encounter at the Sector 42 Hockey Stadium here tonight. The Lions will take on Chandigarh Dynamos in the first final tomorrow.

The two teams were tied at 1-1 at the end of regulation time, and the extra time failed to break the deadlock. In the tie-breaker, the Shers won 3-2. However, the Lions earned a crucial point by pushing the match into extra time.

The Lions played a tactical game with tight man-to-man marking and made the Shers’ midfield completely ineffective. They relied on fast counter-attacks and made good moves upfront to trouble the rival defence.

For the Shers, Kanwalpreet Singh, Harpal Singh and Ajmer Singh found the target in the tie-breaker, while Saqlain’s goal was disallowed. Only Sandeep Michael and Len Aiyappa scored for the Lions. Shers’ substitute goalkeeper Swinder Singh saved the strokes of Arjun Halappa and Bimal Lakra, while Prabodh Tirkey’s shot hit the post.

After missing a couple of close chances, the Lions took the lead in the 22nd minute through a brilliant deflection by Tushar Khandekar. Arjun Halappa sent a 40-yard diagonal cross from the midfield into the circle and Tushar stuck out his stick to put the ball into the net.

The Shers got the equaliser in the 57th minute after a defensive lapse by the Lions. Len Aiyappa miscued an attempted aerial ball and Baljit Singh Dhillon sent a long cross into the circle where Daljit Singh Dhillon trapped the ball and sent a cracking reverse hit which sounded the board.

The Lions garnered a total of 13 points to tie with Hyderabad Sultans, but they managed to scrape through to the final as the number of wins in regulation time were taken into account to break the deadlock. In regulation time, the Lions won three matches, while the Sultans won only two.

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A Date With PHL
All is not well with umpiring 
Prabhjot Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 29
The bane of Indian hockey has been its umpiring. It may sound a little harsh but it is one area that has been greatly responsible for many a good match being spoiled for “bad or unpalatable” decisions.

Yesterday’s game between Chandigarh Dynamos and Maratha Warriors was one such instance because of certain controversial decisions.

“Why should a match of the Premier Hockey League (PHL) be disrupted even when additional facility of the third umpire is available,” asks a former international player who has been closely monitoring the ongoing PHL here.

There have been numerous umpiring blues which had many eyebrows rose during the ongoing PHL. Other day, the third umpire had changed a penalty corner to a penalty stroke. And yesterday, almost a similar situation arose over the penalty corner award in which dispute was whether the ball had crossed the goal line or not.

Dismayed and dissatisfied at the decision, Marathas preferred to stay out to mark their protest.

It is not only players and office-bearers of the federation that are responsible for the state of the game in the country. Responsibility also lies squarely on the shoulders of umpires, judges and other technical officials.

Training of umpires, their posting, monitoring their performance on the field, conduct of the manager of the umpires and chief technical delegate are all important areas which appear to have been ignored for a long time. As a result, an Indian umpire doing international tournaments remains a “suspect” and normally does not get good and key matches to officiate in the FIH run tournaments.

Different interpretation of a particular rule by different umpires in the same tournament leaves not only teams “dissatisfied” but also leave the spectators in general and die hard supporters of the game perplexed.

According to rules, if a player gets a red card, he stands debarred from playing next two games. But during the current edition of PHL, one player, who got red card, in the fourth quarter of the game, was allowed to play the very next game. On the other hand, another player, who got a red card, was debarred.

Similarly, in one game, both the umpires working for a particular organisation were posted to supervise a game in which coach of one of the teams has been their colleague.

In yet another case, one of international umpires, specifically invited to India for the PHL, was reluctant to continue in the game mid way in the game after not only a player but also the team coach allegedly abused him.

A number of games were certainly marred by “bad umpiring decisions”. Is someone monitoring the performance of all umpires? If yes, what action has been taken against those who, wittingly or unwittingly, taking decisions which they know are not in accordance with either the laws of the game or the conventions of this great game.

Should we allow this great sport to continue to suffer because we cannot have a handful good reliable umpires and technical officials to supervise important events like PHL and the national championship. The answer lies with the Indian Hockey Federation (IHF).

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Atwal tied eighth, Chopra slips

San Diego, January 29
Arjun Atwal ran into problems with his putter but remained calm to come back with a one-under 71 in the third round on the tough South Course at Torrey Pines and stay in sight of a top-10 finish at the Buick Invitational.

At eight-under 209, he is just three shots off the lead and in tied eighth place with a good chance of having a go at the leaders.

Atwal had three birdies on the fourth, 13th and 16th holes along with two bogeys. He was somewhat wayward off the tee, but managed to play his irons very well.

But on the unpredictable greens, he took as many as 30 putts, compared to 25 and 28 on first two days. Atwal had the best putting statistics on US Tour in 2005.

Meanwhile, Daniel Chopra, who was tied with Atwal in fifth place overnight, had a bad day with a five-over 77 that saw him slide to tied 42nd.

Jyoti pulls out

Doha: Jyoti Randhawa, former Asian Tour number one, was forced to retire from the final round of the Commercialbank Qatar Masters on Sunday morning after the pain from bruised ribs became unbearable.

Randhawa fell off a four-wheel bike during a desert safari in Doha on Monday but gritted his teeth for three rounds before deciding to pull out.

He started the final round on two-over-par 218 after shooting scores of 71, 72 and 75 at the Doha Golf Club. — PTI

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Punjabi University win cycling trophy
Ravi Dhaliwal

Patiala, January 29
Punjabi University, Patiala, clinched the overall trophy in the men’s section for a record eighth successive time as the curtains came down on the All-India Inter-University Cycling Championship at the Punjabi University velodrome here today.

In the men’s section, the hosts today bagged gold medals in the 100 km mass start race and the 1 km mass start event. These two victories enabled the hosts to garner 50 points, 28 more than their nearest rivals Bikaner University. The third spot was jointly bagged by Kerala and Manipur universities, who got 13 points apiece.

For the hosts, Abhishek Rana bagged yet another gold by winning the 1 km mass start event. Rana pipped to the post Manipur University’s Guna Chandra, while Osmania University’s Vijay Bhasker, an international cyclist, came a distant third.

In the 100 km mass start race, the hosts did a 1-2 when Amandeep Singh and Harpreet Singh finished first and second, respectively. Sis Pal of Bikaner University failed to take off initially but later made a strong comeback to finish third.

The hosts’ eves, the defending champions for the past four years, had to eat a humble pie when they slipped to the third place. The title was won by Panjab University, Chandigarh, while Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, were placed second.

In the 1m km mass start event for women, Rajinder Kaur of Panjab University was placed first while Navdeep Kaur, who otherwise had a good run in the meet, stood second. Manjot Kaur of the hosts came third.

The prizes were distributed by Rana Gurmeet Singh Sodhi, Chief Parliamentary Secretary (Sports) in the presence of Vice-Chancellor S.S. Boparai, Director (Sports) Raj Kumar Sharma and several national and international-level sportspersons. 

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Air-India hold East Bengal

Kolkata, January 29
East Bengal paid for a slow and unimaginative attack to settle for a goalless draw against their less fancied rivals Air-India in the National Football League match at the Salt Lake Stadium here today.

With the tame draw, East Bengal’s tally stood at nine points from five matches while Airmen culled four points from as many outings.

East Bengal started off with aggression and set up scoring opportunities on at least two occasions within 15 minutes.

Nigerian Mike Okoro had only the goalkeeper Sundar Rajan to beat in the ninth minute while Bhaichung Bhutia delayed a shot after nicely chest tapping an Okoro cross from the left barely five minute later.

East Bengal’s new foreign recruit Endem Guy, who was adjudged man of the match, showed some urgency in the red and gold’s frontline particularly in the early session.

However, as the match progressed the hosts seem to get frustrated failing to penetrate the defence wall giving the tourists some free space to breath the pressure out and to switch on to the attacking mode. — PTI

Dempo draw with Bagan

Margao: Goalkeeper Abhijit Mondal’s saves in the second half spared Dempo the blushes as they held Mohun Bagan to a 1-1 draw in an NFL match here on Sunday. Man of the match Bolaji Mejeck gave Dempo the lead in the 61st minute, which was cancelled by Mehatab Hussian through a penalty in the 64th. The two teams now have three points from five matches. — PTI

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 BRIEFLY

Indo-Pak Punjab Games in April
Patiala:
The Chief Parliamentary Secretary (Sports), Rana Gurmeet Singh Sodhi, said on Sunday that the second edition of the Indo-Pak Punjab Games would be held in April this year. He said the dates would be finalised after a meeting of Olympic associations of both Punjabs scheduled to be held next month. He, however, made it clear that the Jalandhar edition of the games will be held in October this year.
Mr Sodhi, who was here as the chief guest at the closing ceremony of the All-India Inter-University Cycling Championship, said the state government had prepared a tentative list of 110 sportspersons whose names would be considered for the Maharaja Ranjit Singh award. — OSR

Soccer team
Patiala:
The Punjabi University men’s football team, which topped the North Zone Inter-University Football League which concluded at Srinagar (UP) on Sunday, have qualified for the All-India Inter-University Football Championship.
The Punjabi University students won all their three league matches to top the table, while Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, who came second, too, have qualified for the all-India championship. Punjabi University downed Gharwal University 3-0, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, 1-0 and Panjab University, Chandigarh, 2-1. — OSR

Baseball tourney
ROHTAK:
Delhi University beat Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, 14-10 in the men’s section in the inaugural match of the All-India Inter-University Baseball Championship which commenced at the MDU Sports Complex here on Sunday. The event was inaugurated by the president of the Commonwealth Youth Congress, Mr Vikram Kaul. — OSR

Lahore Marathon
Lahore:
Ignoring threats by Islamists, about 20,000 men and women took part in the Lahore Marathon on Sunday. The race was won by Ethiopia’s Helefom Abebe. — PTI

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