SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
S P O R T S

Three cheers for Rana
Doha, December 8
Jaspal Rana strode the Lusail Shooting Range like a colossus and did the country proud, once again, by equalling the world record in 25m centre fire pistol to earn two more gold medals and, in the process, become the only Indian marksman to script three triumphs in an edition of the Asian Games here today.
Jaspal Rana is cheered by fans and members of the Indian contingent on winning the gold in the 25m centre fire pistol event on Friday
Jaspal Rana is cheered by fans and members of the Indian contingent on winning the gold in the 25m centre fire pistol event on Friday. — PTI photo

Sania wins her tie
Doha: Sania Mirza late tonight beat Y.J. Chan of Chinese Taipei in the women’s tennis team final of the Asian Games at Doha. With this, India was tied 1-1 with its opponent till the reports last came in. — Agency








EARLIER STORIES




Hockey eves whip Hong Kong
Doha, December 8
Striker Surinder Kaur struck a purple patch blasting four goals as India whipped a lowly Hong Kong 7-0 to keep their hopes alive for a podium finish in the women hockey competition in the Asian Games here today.

Goal rush: Men score nine, women get seven
Doha, December 8
India’s hopes in men’s hockey flickered back to life in the Asian Games after it scored an emphatic 9-0 victory over Oman in a Group B league match here today. The thumping win left the struggling team with an outside chance of securing a place in the semifinals. The eves kept their hopes of a podium finish alive by whipping Hong Kong 7-0. The Indian men did just what was required by scripting a huge victory and now face the herculean task of putting it across strong contenders South Korea by another big margin to remain afloat in the tournament.

India’s Shivendra Singh (right) celebrates with Tejbir Singh after scoring a goal against Oman during a Pool B hockey match on Friday. — AFP photo

India’s Shivendra Singh celebrates with Tejbir Singh after scoring a goal against Oman during a Pool B hockey match on Friday

Shuttlers go empty-handed
Doha, December 8
The weak Indian challenge in the Asian Games badminton competition came to an end today with the elimination of men’s doubles pair of Sanave Thomas and Rupesh Kumar in the quarterfinals.

Vijender enters boxing semis
Doha, December 8
Giving a daredevil display, Vijender outscored Turkmenistan’s Shukuralla Atajanov in the quarterfinal of the 75kg category bout to assure India a boxing medal here today. As per the rules of the sport, there is no fight for the third place and the losing semifinalists are awarded a bronze each.

Horsemen win bronze
Doha, December 8
After initially declared fourth, India was adjudged the bronze medal winner in the team event, while Bhagirath Singh missed a podium finish by a whisker after finishing fourth in the individual event of the equestrian competition of the 15th Asian Games here today.

Indian rider Bhagirath Singh competes in the equestrian cross-country competition on Thursday. The Indian quartet of Bhagirath, Deep Kumar Ahlawat, Palvinder Singh and Rajesh Pattu won the bronze in the team event on Friday. — AFP photo
Indian rider Bhagirath Singh competes in the equestrian cross-country competition on Thursday

Women ousted in handball
Doha, December 8
India today crashed out of the women’s handball competition after succumbing to a 17-38 loss to last edition’s silver medallists Kazakhstan in their second group A match at Al-Gharrafa Indoor Hall here.

Vietnam’s Do Thi Bong, Japan’s Miho Sugimori and India’s Santhi Soundarajan cross the finish line in heat 1 of the women’s 800m event at the Khalifa Stadium in Doha on Friday
Vietnam’s Do Thi Bong (left), Japan’s Miho Sugimori (centre) and India’s Santhi Soundarajan cross the finish line in heat 1 of the women’s 800m event at the Khalifa Stadium in Doha on Friday. Soundarajan finished first with a time of 2:08.62, with Do second and Sugimori third. — AFP 

Exonerated Antil refuses to compete
New Delhi, December 8
Seema Antil maintained she has not consumed any performance-enhancing drug but refused to compete in the ongoing Asian Games despite being cleared by the Athletics Federation of India (AFI).

Golfers make steady start
Doha, December 8
Anirban Lahiri’s opening round of three-under 69 saw the Indian being placed tied sixth, while Indian golfers finished day one of the men’s team event at the fourth place here today. In the team event, Lahiri (69) Gaganjeet Bhullar (70) and Chiragh Kumar (71) totalled 210 as India lay fourth with an opening round total of 210.

MEDAL TALLY


SAFARI: Warm-up Game
Bowlers soar, batsmen fall 

Potchefstroom, December 8

Potchefstroom, December 8
A timid surrender once again by India’s top-order batsmen took the joy out of the good work on the field on the second day of the warm-up match against Rest of South Africa here today.




India’s S Sreesanth (right) celebrates with Virender Sehwag after dismissing Rest of South Africa’s Jacques Rudolph on the second day of the four-day warm-up game at Sedgars Park in Potchefstroom on Friday. — AP/PTI photo
India’s S Sreesanth celebrates with Virender Sehwag after dismissing Rest of South Africa’s Jacques Rudolph on the second day of the four-day warm-up game at Sedgars Park in Potchefstroom on Friday

Kiwis poised for win
Wellington, December 8
New Zealand were poised for victory at stumps on day two of the opening Test against Sri Lanka after 16 wickets fell in three sessions in Christchurch today. Sri Lanka were toiling at 125 for eight at the close in their second innings, just 73 runs ahead, with Kumar Sangakkara offering the tourists a glimmer of hope in the low-scoring contest with an unbeaten 63.

Martyn retires
Melbourne, December 8
Classy Australian middle order batsman Damien Martyn today announced his retirement from all forms of cricket, saying he wanted to preserve his self-respect and pave way for more committed players.

Punjab Armed Police players in a jubilant mood after winning the overall trophy at the 51st Punjab Police Games at the PAP Stadium in Jalandhar on Friday
Punjab Armed Police players in a jubilant mood after winning the overall trophy at the 51st Punjab Police Games at the PAP Stadium in Jalandhar on Friday. — Photo by S. S. Chopra 

Punjab Police win tennis title
Chandigarh, December 8
The Punjab Police team, led by S.M. Sharma, Additional Director-General, emerged champions in the recently concluded 7th All-India Police Tennis Tournament at Dehra Dun.

Movie stars to support PHL teams
New Delhi, December 8
Movie stars and sports icons will back the various teams for the Premier Hockey League (PHL), to be held in Chandigarh and Chennai, early next year. Bollywood star Jimmy Sher Gill will root for Sher-e-Jalandhar while Southern movie star Madhavan will back Chennai Veerans.

 

 


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Three cheers for Rana

Doha, December 8
Jaspal Rana strode the Lusail Shooting Range like a colossus and did the country proud, once again, by equalling the world record in 25m centre fire pistol to earn two more gold medals and, in the process, become the only Indian marksman to script three triumphs in an edition of the Asian Games here today.

Rana shot 590 to equal the World record and was three point ahead of his close rival Liu Guohui of China who shot 587 while Thailand’s Jakkrit took the bronze in 586.

In the team event Rana, Vijay Kumar and Samresh Jung also equalled World and Asian record as they aggregated 1748 for the gold, Korea 1738 won the silver and China took the bronze with 1735.

The 30-year old shooter is the only second Indian to have won gold in the Asian Games after Randhir Singh and the only one to have won the gold twice in the extravaganza. He now has four Asiad gold in his kitty, three from here and one from Hiroshima (1994).

Rana, who was on the verge of retiring from the sport and planning to migrate to Australia, gave a stunning display in the 25m centre fire pistol event to win the individual and team gold and spoil the Chinese party.

As is his wont, he rewrote record books for the second day running to end the Indian shooting team’s campaign on a high note.

The Indian shooters claimed a haul of 14 medals (three gold, five silver and six bronze) - the country’s best show so far in the games. Indian contingent had only two silvers to show in Busan.

Rana, thus enabled Indian tri-colour to go up twice, on the last day in the ranges with his phenomenal showing.

He shot 294 in precision and 296 in rapid. His precision series ran 98, 98, 98 while in rapid he shot 100, 98, 98.

Vijay Kumar who finished ninth in the field of 48 shooters shot 580, which included 286 (96, 95, 95) in precision and 294 (97, 98, 99) in rapid.

Samresh Jung was placed 12th - with 578. In precision, he had 287 (95, 95, 97) and 291 in rapid (96, 95, 100).

“I am thrilled, feeling as if on the top of the world,” said an overjoyed Rana. “I gave my best and I am happy that I got the reward. It feels wonderful to be the only Indian to have won three gold in the Asian Games shooting and overall four gold.

“I would have been more happy if we had earned more gold after all personal glory apart, national prtestige is also at stake in such level of competition,” said Rana who has been suffering from fever for the past couple of days.

“What makes me more happy that I won in a field which was world class. The Chinese, Thais and Kazakhs all were there, the conditions not very perfect and to win in these situation is all the more thrilling,” he added. — UNI

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Hockey eves whip Hong Kong

Doha, December 8
Striker Surinder Kaur struck a purple patch blasting four goals as India whipped a lowly Hong Kong 7-0 to keep their hopes alive for a podium finish in the women hockey competition in the Asian Games here today.

Apart from Surinder's four goals (21st, 35th, 54th and 68th), skipper Sunita Kullu chipped in two (27th and 54th) and Jasjeet Kaur contributed one (50th).

The Indians, who led 3-0 at half time should have finished with a much higher victory margin but once again the forwards failed to captalise on the chances that came their way.

This was India's third win in four matches and they still have two tough ties ahead against Japan and Korea and if they manage to beat any one of them, they are sure to make it to the final. But for that they will have to sharpen and fine tune their attack and finish.

Against Hong Kong India got 11 penalty corners but could convert only three and that too through indirect attempts. They made whopping 44 attempts at the rival goal but lack of finish effected their victory margin.

India started without skipper Jyoti Kullu, who is not fully fit after suffering a head on collision in an earlier match but she was forced to play midway through the first half as other forwards were making mess of the things.

Despite the overwhelming domination, it took the Indians 21 long minutes to break the dead lock and score the first goal when Surinder Kaur converted a stroke (1-0).

Six minutes later the Indian skipper made her presence felt when she gave her side the lead scoring off a penalty corner (2-0). And just on the stroke of half time Surinder struck again scoring off a penalty corner(3-0).

The Indian domination continued in the second session and ball was mostly in the 25 yard area of Hong Kong, but goal keeper Lee Mei Chai and defender Barbara Helen Mountain frustrated the rivals with some superb defence.

The Hong Kong attack was too feeble and they hardly made any move towards rival defence and the Indian goal keeper Dipika Murthy virtually had an off day in the office as she was not tested even once.

Three quick goals in a span of seven minutes saw India taking a 6-0 lead with Jyoti Kullu and Jasjeet scoring field goals in 47th and 50th minutes and Surinder Kaur striking off a penalty corner in the 54th.

After putting India in a commanding position, Jyoti left the field and two minutes before the full time, Surinder Kaur struck again this time scoring a beautiful goal (7-0) to complete the tally.

Despite the big victory margin the Indian performance left lot to be desired and coach MK Kaushik was fully aware of it. ''We will have to improve upon our finishing and not missing as many chances.'' The coach admitted that penalty corner conversion remains a bit of problem. ''We need to convert more and against Japan and Korea we just can't afford to miss.'' ''Three wins out of four is very good going but we have tough task ahead,'' Kaushik said and added, ''The girls will have to give their best in the next two matches because they know we are very close to our target and I have told them that they have in them the quality and capability to emerge winners, it is just a question of being focused, not loose chances and keep nerves. — UNI

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Goal rush: Men score nine, women get seven

Doha, December 8
India’s hopes in men’s hockey flickered back to life in the Asian Games after it scored an emphatic 9-0 victory over Oman in a Group B league match here today.
The thumping win left the struggling team with an outside chance of securing a place in the semifinals. The eves kept their hopes of a podium finish alive by whipping Hong Kong 7-0.

The Indian men did just what was required by scripting a huge victory and now face the herculean task of putting it across strong contenders South Korea by another big margin to remain afloat in the tournament.

Forward Shivendra Singh did the star turn for the Indians by pumping in three goals, while Tushar Khandekar and Hari Prasad slammed in two goals each.

Captain Dilip Tirkey and Arjun Halappa chipped in with a goal each to complete the misery for the Oman team who were left clueless at the Al Rayyan hockey stadium.

Required to put their best foot forward after their shock defeat to China, the Indians hit three goals in the first half and drowned Oman with a deluge of six goals in the second session to improve their position on the points table.

India were placed third with six points from three matches while Korea topped the group with nine points followed by China who also have nine.

India have a goal difference of +14 while Korea have +21, which means that Vasudevan Baskaran’s men not only have to beat the Koreans on Decemeber 10 but also win by a big margin to push China, who have a goal difference of +6, out of the fray.

Meanwhile, striker Surinder Kaur struck a purple patch blasting four goals as India crushed a lowly Hong Kong 7-0.

Apart from Surinder’s four goals (21st, 35th, 54th and 68th), skipper Sunita Kullu chipped in two (27th and 54th) and Jasjeet Kaur contributed one (50th).

The Indians, who led 3-0 at half time should have finished with a much higher victory margin but once again the forwards failed to captalise on the chances that came their way.

This was India’s third win in four matches and they still have two tough ties ahead against Japan and Korea and if they manage to beat any one of them, they are sure to make it to the final. — PTI, UNI

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Shuttlers go empty-handed

Doha, December 8
The weak Indian challenge in the Asian Games badminton competition came to an end today with the elimination of men’s doubles pair of Sanave Thomas and Rupesh Kumar in the quarterfinals.

Thomas and Kumar, the only Indians left in the fray following defeats suffered by all others before the last eight stage of the individual events, made a bright start before fading out against their third-seeded Indonesian opponents Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan.

The Indians were outsmarted 18-21, 21-9, 21-11, by the Indonesian duo who entered the semifinals.

Earlier in the pre-quarters, Thomas and Kumar had survived a very tight opening game before gaining control in the second to brush aside the challenge of seventh seeds Njoto Albertus Susanto and Yohan Hadi Kusumo of Hong Kong 26-24, 21-17.

The other Indian pair of S Vidyadhar and V Diju were outclassed in the round of 16 by strong title contenders Jung Jae Sung and Lee Yong Dae 21-16, 21-14 in 20 minutes.

Seeking a place in the semis, Thomas and Kumar started with a bang against Kido and Setiawan but ended their bid with a whimper after providing a hint of an upset when they won a tight opening game in 11 minutes.

The Indians won the first game 21-18 but were unable to maintain the same level of play and went down in the next two games 9-21, 11-21 to lose the match in 26 minutes. — UNI

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Vijender enters boxing semis

Doha, December 8
Giving a daredevil display, Vijender outscored Turkmenistan’s Shukuralla Atajanov in the quarterfinal of the 75kg category bout to assure India a boxing medal here today.
As per the rules of the sport, there is no fight for the third place and the losing semifinalists are awarded a bronze each.

However, two others Indians in the fray, Sanjay Kolte Kisan and Harpreet Singh, lost their quarterfinal bouts.

Twentyone-year-old Vijender meets Kazakhstan’s Bakhtiyar Artayev in the semifinal. The Indian was at his ferocious best as he took on Shukuralla and pounded him all over with powerful blows.

The Indian won the first round 14-3 and the second 12-3 when referee S Maneekhem of Laos stepped to stop the contest.

In the 48kg category, Sanjay Kisan Kotle crashed out as he lost to China’s Zou Shiming.

In the 91kg quarterfinal, Harpreet Singh lost to Al Shami of Syria on points. — UNI

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Horsemen win bronze

Doha, December 8
After initially declared fourth, India was adjudged the bronze medal winner in the team event, while Bhagirath Singh missed a podium finish by a whisker after finishing fourth in the individual event of the equestrian competition of the 15th Asian Games here today.

The original result stated India finishing fourth with 244.90 collective penalty points, behind Qatar (182), Japan (204.10) and Indonesia (230.20).

After re-calculation, Indonesia’s total penalty point was re-estimated at 246.20 and the organisers declared India as the bronze medal winner.

The Indian quartet of Bhagirath Singh, Deep Kumar Ahlawat, Palvinder Singh and Rajesh Pattu in fact could have finished even up but for the poor form of Ahlawat, who had the highest penalty point against his name.

In the individual event, Bhagirath was unlucky to miss the bronze.

Japan’s Yoshiaki Oiwa won the individual gold with just 44.50 penalty points, while Qatar’s Abdullah Ali Abdulla Al Ejail (46.70) claimed the silver with a penalty-free final jumping run, with Husref Jeremiah (57.30) of Malaysia finishing third.

Bhagirath, riding on his horse Guddu, totalled 61.20 after 58.80 penalty points in dressage and 2.40 in cross-country. Though he impressed with a penalty-free jumping run, that was too little and too late and his total saw him just missing a podium finish.

Among his compatriots, Rajesh Pattu (61.80) finished sixth and Deep Kumar Ahlawat (121.90) came 24th after three days of dressage, cross-country and show jumping.

All the riders wore black armbands today to mourn the death of South Korean rider Kim Hyung-chil who was crushed under the weight of his horse at the Doha Racing and Equestrian Club yesterday.

Korea later withdrew from the remainder of the competition.

Shuttlers go empty-handed

The weak Indian challenge in the Asian Games badminton competition came to an end today with the elimination of men’s doubles pair of Sanave Thomas and Rupesh Kumar in the quarterfinals.

Thomas and Kumar, the only Indians left in the fray following defeats suffered by all others before the last eight stage of the individual events, made a bright start before fading out against their third-seeded Indonesian opponents Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan.

The Indians were outsmarted 18-21, 21-9, 21-11, by the Indonesian duo who entered the semifinals.

Earlier in the pre-quarters, Thomas and Kumar had survived a very tight opening game before gaining control in the second to brush aside the challenge of seventh seeds Njoto Albertus Susanto and Yohan Hadi Kusumo of Hong Kong 26-24, 21-17.

The other Indian pair of S Vidyadhar and V Diju were outclassed in the round of 16 by strong title contenders Jung Jae Sung and Lee Yong Dae 21-16, 21-14 in 20 minutes.

Seeking a place in the semis, Thomas and Kumar started with a bang against Kido and Setiawan but ended their bid with a whimper after providing a hint of an upset when they won a tight opening game in 11 minutes.

The Indians won the first game 21-18 but were unable to maintain the same level of play and went down in the next two games 9-21, 11-21 to lose the match in 26 minutes. — UNI

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Women ousted in handball

Doha, December 8
India today crashed out of the women’s handball competition after succumbing to a 17-38 loss to last edition’s silver medallists Kazakhstan in their second group A match at Al-Gharrafa Indoor Hall here.

With their second successive loss in the competition — they lost 19-56 to China in their first match — India are at the bottom of the group and out of contention in this event.

Sepak takraw woes continue

After three days of break, sepak takraw came back to haunt India and this time the Philippines beat them 1-2 in the men’s regu preliminary league match in the Asian Games here today.

It was a battle between two novice teams and the slightly better outfit won today as Philippines overpowered India 55-48.

Though the Indians bemused a sparse crowd by winning the first set 21-19, their rivals staged a strong come-from-behind rally to win the next two sets 21-18, 15-9.

The Indians fielded Chinganbam Geskant, Chabungbam Biken Singh and Jotin Singh Khangembam and the trio put up a good fight within their limits but could not stop the rivals from winning.

India is placed in pool B along with Myanmar, Malaysia, Iran and the Philippines.— UNI, PTI

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Exonerated Antil refuses to compete

Seema Antil
Seema Antil

New Delhi, December 8
Seema Antil maintained she has not consumed any performance-enhancing drug but refused to compete in the ongoing Asian Games despite being cleared by the Athletics Federation of India (AFI).

In her letter to the AFI, the discus thrower said she had been under tremendous stress over the last fortnight because of her father’s ailment and also alleged that she was the victim of a slandering campaign.

“Considering my recent performance, I’m not in a position to give my best in Doha and so I request you to exempt me from taking part in the Asian Games,” the thrower wrote in Hindi.

She thanked the AFI for clearing hear and said, “I repeat to you what I have told the AFI hearing panel that I have not taken any banned substance, for I’m well aware of the consequences.” Earlier today, AFI exonerated Seema of doping charges and said the “innocent” thrower would compete in the ongoing Asian Games in Doha.

AFI secretary Lalit Bhanot said in a release that the federation had constituted a hearing panel to probe into the matter, as per the IAAF and federation rules.

Based on the subsequent test carried out in the laboratory, including the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) lab in Bangkok, the panel deliberated over the matter at length.

“The hearing panel is of the view that Ms Seema Antil has not violated any rules and she is innocent. The charges against her due to the conduct should be dropped.

“On the basis of the factual circumstances, AFI considered it appropriate that Ms Seema Antil should be allowed to participate in her event in the ongoing Asian Games in Doha,” Mr Bhanot said. — UNI

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Golfers make steady start

Doha, December 8
Anirban Lahiri’s opening round of three-under 69 saw the Indian being placed tied sixth, while Indian golfers finished day one of the men’s team event at the fourth place here today.

In the team event, Lahiri (69) Gaganjeet Bhullar (70) and Chiragh Kumar (71) totalled 210 as India lay fourth with an opening round total of 210. South Korea share the top slot with Chinese Taipei at 205, while Japan were third just one stroke behind.

In the men’s individual event, Anirban Lahiri came up with the best show among the Indians with an opening round of 69 for the tied sixth place.

Bhullar sank four birdies, as against a couple of bogeys, in his round of two-under 70 for a tied 11th finish.

Meghna Bal was the pick of the Indians in the women’s section and the youngster carded a two-under 71 to finish tied seventh after a round that included two bogeys and four birdies.

Vaishvi Sinha stuttered on her front nine and eventually went one-over 74 to be 15th, while fellow Indian Sharmila Nicollet had a horrendous four-over 77 to finish 18th.

In the team event, the Indian eves were lying sixth at 145, behind Japan (135), South Korea (137), Chinese Taipei (137), China (143) and the Philippines (144). — UNI

 

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SAFARI: Warm-up Game
Bowlers soar, batsmen fall
Ashish Shukla

Potchefstroom, December 8
A timid surrender once again by India’s top-order batsmen took the joy out of the good work on the field on the second day of the warm-up match against Rest of South Africa here today.

Openers Virender Sehwag and Wasim Jaffer and Sachin Tendulkar in particular did little to ease the creases on the forehead of the team management as the Indians tumbled to 93 for seven in the second essay.

The abject surrender by the batsmen came after the bowlers had shot out the hosts for 138 in the first innings and given the visitors a 178-run advantage.

Sehwag (10), Jaffer (0) and Tendulkar (12) continued with their woeful form on the tour and even though the lead had swelled to 271 by close, the scoreboard at close had the heads downcast in the dressing room.

The unending saga is best reflected in the figures: Sehwag now has 39 runs from four innings; Tendulkar 98 from five and Jaffer 15 from three knocks as the free fall of the Indian top order shows no signs of stopping.

Their dismissals reflected the form they are in: Jaffer and Sehwag showed no movement of feet as they came a cropper against the new ball. And Tendulkar, keen to grind out a long stay at the crease, fell as he had done so many times in the past — leg before wicket to a delivery which swung in and hit him in front of stumps.

First-innings hero Sourav Ganguly lasted a mere two balls, both bouncers, but the second more lethal as it climbed on to him and looped off his bat to wicketkeeper Van Jaarsveld for a simple catch.

Mahendra Singh Dhoni was no different to what has been his dismal show of the tour, making 16 sketchy runs before edging Alfonso Thomas to second slip.

Harbhajan Singh became Thomas’ fifth victim before bad light brought a premature end to the day's proceedings.

Earlier, Sreesanth scalped four and was well-supported by Zaheer Khan and VRV Singh as the tourists bundled out the hosts for 138 in 34-odd overs. — PTI

Scoreboard

India (1st innings) 316 for 7

Rest of SA (1st innings)

Rudolph c Dhoni b Sreesanth 5

Petersen c sub (Gambhir) b Zaheer 2

Duminy lbw Zaheer 16

Van Jaarsveld lbw Sreesanth 52

Van Wyk lbw Pathan 6

Kemp lbw VRV 2

Thomas lbw VRV 0

Adams lbw Sreesanth 0

Morkel c Sehwag b VRV 4

De Wet not out 14

Hayward c Dhoni b Sreesanth 15

Extras (b-2, lb-8, nb-12) 22

Total (all out, 31.1 overs) 138

Fall of wickets: 1-5, 2-7, 3-32, 4-67, 5-90, 6-94, 7-94, 8-95, 9-106.

Bowling: Zaheer 7-0-22-2, Sreesanth 11.1-3-53-4, Pathan 4-1-18-1, VRV 9-2-35-3.

India (2nd innings)

Sehwag lbw Thomas 10

Jaffer c Van Wyk b Thomas 0

Laxman c Duminy b Thomas 31

Tendulkar lbw Hayward 12

Ganguly c Van Jaarsveld b Hayward 0

Dhoni c Kemp b Thomas 16

Pathan not out 15

Harbhajan lbw Thomas 0

Sreesanth not out 0

Extras (b-4, lb-2, w-2, nb-1) 9

Total (7 wickets, 40 overs) 93

Fall of wickets: 1-3, 2-14, 3-33, 4-33, 5-55, 6-93, 7-93.

Bowling: Morkel 12-5-25-0, Thomas 15-5-32-5, Hayward 7-3-13-2, De Wet 6-2-17-0. 

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Kiwis poised for win

Wellington, December 8
New Zealand were poised for victory at stumps on day two of the opening Test against Sri Lanka after 16 wickets fell in three sessions in Christchurch today. Sri Lanka were toiling at 125 for eight at the close in their second innings, just 73 runs ahead, with Kumar Sangakkara offering the tourists a glimmer of hope in the low-scoring contest with an unbeaten 63.

Paceman Shane Bond took his match tally to seven wickets by picking up four scalps and two run-outs as the Sri Lankan top order folded from 44-1 to 99-8 while Sangakkara remained defiant.

New Zealand were earlier indebted to Daniel Vettori for their total of 206, the spinner was last man out for 63 as the hosts, who lost four wickets for just seven runs in the morning session, were dismissed in reply to Sri Lanka’s 154.

He added 75 in a crucial seventh-wicket stand with skipper Stephen Fleming (48) as off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan dominated proceedings.

Muralitharan made the initial breakthrough after New Zealand had resumed on 85-2 by bowling opener Craig Cumming for 43.

The off-spinner then trapped Nathan Astle in front for two before Chaminda Vaas had Jacob Oram caught at mid wicket for two and forced Brendon McCullum to chop onto his stumps for a duck as the hosts slumped to 113-6.

Muralitharan trapped James Franklin and Bond for one and a duck to finish with figures of 4-65.

Scoreboard

Sri Lanka (1st innings) 154

New Zealand (1st innings)

Cumming b Muralitharan 43

How lbw Malinga 0

Sinclair c P. Jayawardene b Vaas 36

Fleming c Kapugedera b Maharoof 48

Astle lbw Muralitharan 2

Oram c Silva b Vaas 1

McCullum b Vaas 0

Vettori c M. Jayawardene b Malinga 63

Franklin lbw Muralitharan 0

Bond lbw Muralitharan 1

Martin not out 0

Extras (lb-5, nb-7) 12

Total (all out, 85.4 overs) 206

Fall of wickets: 1-3, 2-73, 3-106, 4-108, 5-113, 6-113, 7-188, 8-190, 9-206, 10-206.

Bowling: Vaas 18-4-49-3, Malinga 19.4-2-43-2, Maharoof 14-3-44-1, Muralitharan 34-7-65-4.

Sri Lanka (2nd innings)

Tharanga c Fleming b Bond 24

Jayasuriya run out 10

Sangakkara not out 63

M. Jayawardene c Fleming b Franklin 0

Kapugedera c Oram b Bond 1

Silva c Vettori b Bond 0

P. Jayawardene run out 11

Vaas c McCullum b Oram 0

Maharoof c McCullum b Bond 7

Malinga not out 0

Extras (lb-5, nb-4) 9

Total (8 wkts, 37 overs) 125

Fall of wickets: 1-18, 2-44, 3-45, 4-46, 5-46, 6-74, 7-80, 8-99.

Bowling: Bond 12-3-38-4, Martin 9-2-36-0, Franklin 7-1-17-1, Oram 7-1-19-1, Vettori 2-0-10 -0. — Reuters

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Martyn retires

Damien Martyn Melbourne, December 8
Classy Australian middle order batsman Damien Martyn today announced his retirement from all forms of cricket, saying he wanted to preserve his self-respect and pave way for more committed players.

The West Australian batsman, who has not been among the runs in the ongoing Ashes series against England, notified Cricket Australia Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland of his decision this morning, a press statement said.

Justifying his decision to call it quits, the out-of-form batsman said he wanted to make way for people with more than 100 per cent commitment and dedication for cricket.

“I would like to advise of my retirement from cricket, effective from today.

The 35-year-old batsman, who had a string of poor scores in the current Ashes series, said he took the decision in order to bid farewell to the sport in a respectful manner.

Martyn, who made his Test and one-day international debut against the West Indies in 1992, played 67 Tests scoring 4406 runs at 46.37. His final Test was during Australia’s victory last week over England in the second Ashes Test in Adelaide.

Martyn also played 208 one-day internationals scoring 5346 runs at 40.80.

Uncapped Western Australian batsman Adam Voges was named as the replacement for Martyn for the third Ashes Test. — PTI

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Punjab Police win tennis title
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 8
The Punjab Police team, led by S.M. Sharma, Additional Director-General, emerged champions in the recently concluded 7th All-India Police Tennis Tournament at Dehra Dun.

The tournament was organised by the Uttaranchal Police. It was the fifth time that Punjab Police won the tournament and the third time in a row.

A spokesman for Punjab Police said Ashish Kapoor won the open singles, S.M. Sharma won the veteran singles, while S.M. Sharma and Arun Sharma won the veteran doubles (above 50) trophy.

Other members of the Punjab Police team were A.K. Oraon, M.F. Farooqi, Rakesh Kaushal, Ashish Kapoor and Arun Sharma.

Twentytwo teams from various states, union territories and Central police organisations participated in the tournament. Gen S.F. Rodrigues, Governor of Punjab, honoured the members of the winning team at PAP, Jalandhar, today.

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Movie stars to support PHL teams
Our Sports Reporter

New Delhi, December 8
Movie stars and sports icons will back the various teams for the Premier Hockey League (PHL), to be held in Chandigarh and Chennai, early next year.
Bollywood star Jimmy Sher Gill will root for Sher-e-Jalandhar while Southern movie star Madhavan will back Chennai Veerans. Likewise, VVS Laxman will back Hyderabad Sultans, Deebashish Mohanty will support Orissa Steelers and Prakash Padukone will champion the cause of Bangalore Lions.

ESPN Star Sports announced here today that each team ambassador will participate in events concerning his respective team and will be the official brand ambassador for his side.

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