|Friday, April 28, 2000,
favours CBI enquiry
Mascarenhas defrauded DD
Sharma denies charges
|Govt appeals against bail to
NEW DELHI, April 27 The government today challenged in the Supreme Court a Delhi High Court order granting anticipatory bail to film star Kishan Kumar in connection with the sensational match-fixing case.
Kalras bail plea rejected
guilty players for life: ACB chief
Games on schedule: Kalmadi
day for India in Fed Cup
|Gade, Camilla Martin enter
GLASGOW, April 27 World number one Peter Gade was made to battle hard in defence of his European mens singles title here yesterday, needing to save four game points to avoid going the full distance against Dicky Palyama, the former European junior champion from the Netherlands, before reaching the quarterfinals.
CII to help IOA to
to lead India in junior golf
to meet TN in final
in Wimbledon prize money
sail into final
Dalmiya favours CBI enquiry
NEW DELHI, April 27 Former Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Jagmohan Dalmiya favoured a CBI enquiry to unearth the match-fixing scandal as the libel laws in the country is such that it will take 15 to 20 years for a suit to be settled.
Mr Dalmiya, who insisted that he attended the meeting called by the Department of Sports in his capacity as the former board Secretary and not as president of the International Cricket Council, said at this juncture the people in the country feel let down and there should be a little more transparency in the enquiry, and why not let the CBI probe. But he assured that you appoint any committee and we will co-operate.
Mr Dalmiya also suggested that there should be a time-frame of say 30 or 60 days to sort out things, as the the whole country feel cheated and what is required is not a short term issue but a long term issue and then posed a major poser: Whoever comes out clean, what protection are you going to give?
Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) president Indrajit Singh Bindra said if a CBI enquiry is instituted I will be happy to share the information I am privy to. He said: We will not recommend very lightly for a CBI inquiry, we are doing it with full seriousness and responsibility as we know what a CBI inquiry is like. We have ourselves gone through that and we will do nothing to harass anybody without valid reason.
Board President A.C. Muthiah said he gave a complete appraisal of the BCCIs activity, as there is a misconception that the board spends all the money on administrative work, and very little for the development of the game.
The board chief announced: We are prepared to whole-heartedly co-operate with the enquiry agency, let it be the Delhi Police, or the CBI. He also fired a salvo at Mr Bindra saying that the former board president should come out with the facts before the investigating agency, and not in the press. What is the point in telling the press, he wondered.
Bishan Singh Bedi said though the meeting was a fruitful experience, more time should have given for discussion. Former captains Kapil Dev, Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar fled into their cars without offering any comments while Azharuddin too opted to play hide and seek.
Dalmiya, Mascarenhas defrauded DD
NEW DELHI, April 27 (UNI) International Cricket Council chief Jagmohan Dalmiya and Worldtels Mark Mascarenhas were today accused of defrauding Doordarshan of $ 4 million with regard to the telecast rights of the ICC knockout tournament in Dhaka in October 1998.
Even as an inquiry is being held into the match-fixing scandal in cricket, Mr Arun Agarwal, who conducted an inquiry into Doordarshans telecast of sports events in the past few years, today alleged that efforts were on to shelve the fact regarding the scams related to the erstwhile sports consortium.
In a press meet here, Mr Agarwal wanted to know why the Prasar Bharati Board had decided to shelve the file without referring the matter to the Vigilance or the Central Bureau of Investigation as desired by former Chief Executive officer O.P. Kejriwal who had appointed Mr Agarwal to conduct the inquiry. It was a clear indication of the level of corruption in cricket, he said. It not only involves players but even prominent personalities who are closely associated with the game.
Mr Agarwal alleged that Mr Dalmiya, in March 1998, entered into post-bid negotiations with Doordarshan as the sole negotiator for the ICC knockout tournament and increased the telecast fee from $ 8 million to $ 11 million, of which $ 4 million were to be for the Indian rights, $ 6 million for international rights and one million towards international costs. However, Stracon advised through a letter on March 3 that it had already sold the international rights to Mark Mascarenhas for $ 8 million and the Indian rights would now cost $ 8 million. Thus, a benefit of $ 4 million was given to Mascarenhas, Mr Agarwal said.
Relating the sequence of events, Mr Agarwal said the ICC asked Prasar Bharati in February 1998 to deposit a bank guarantee of 10 per cent of the bid amount, despite the fact that this had not been a part of the bid document. Stracon India entered into a memorandum of understanding with Worldtel on February 19 for transfer of international (minus India) marketing rights to Mark Mascarenhas of Worldtel for $ 3 million, but this was kept secret from Doordarshan. Thereafter, Doordarshan requested Stracon to procure a bank guarantee on its behalf and create a charge on the international rights of the tournament, without mentioning any amounts or inviting competitive bids. Worldtel was recognised as the overseas rights holder.
The controversial report on the sports consortium had revealed that Doordarshan suffered losses running into several crores of rupees from telecasting of several sporting events during 1998-99 either because of some collusion/misappropriation or because of lack of proper planning by Doordarshan officials.
Submitted to the board in May last year, the report related to the sports events in 1998-99 and the working of the sports consortium which had been formed when Mr S.S. Gill was the CEO of Prasar Bharati. While the report, which was discussed by the board, was never made public, Mr Agarwal said he had been encouraged to make it public as no Prasar Bharati document was secret by an order of Mr Gill and because he wanted to show that the money involved in match-fixing was nothing in comparison to the consortium scams.
A cursory reading of the report raises several questions about crores of rupees involved in the Doordarshan telecasts. For example, it is still not known why India paid as much as $ 6 million for the telecast of just 11 matches out of the $ 24 million which the England and Wales Cricket Board received from all over the world (with many countries telecasting all the fortytwo matches).
The report also shows that Doordarshan did not earn a single rupee from nine events including Wimbledon, World Cup Soccer, French Open and Mini World Cup cricket which were beamed live in 1998, and had in fact lost money.
Although it was flaunted as the first time that Doordarshan had bagged world rights of a major sports event, the Aggarwal report also says that Doordarshan had lost about Rs 20 crore in connection with the telecasts of the International Cricket Council mini-series held in Bangladesh two years ago. The broadcaster lost $ 3 million to $ 4 million on account of under-realisation from the sale of international rights in view of higher bidding being available. It had also paid the withholding tax of Rs 5.11 crore and waived the opportunity cost which was Rs 14 lakh for weekdays and Rs 17 lakh for weekends.
In addition, a sum of Rs 30 lakh had been spent on advertisements in local papers. All this was in addition to expenditures on foreign trips, interest costs, and precious foreign exchange. The report shows there were dealings for the mini-series in the name of the consortium even before the consortium formally came into being in March 1998.
Also, there is still no
definite explanation despite half-hearted attempts
by Doordarshan officials to what happened to an
amount of about Rs 7.5 crore lying in Doordarshans
Canara Bank account for the World Cup/Sharjah events.
Doordarshan officials have not been able to explain why
an account and a foreign letter of credit of about Rs 10
crore in connection with the Sharjah and World Cup was
opened in a bank other than the State Bank of India which
handles Doordarshan accounts.
Ajay Sharma denies charges
MUMBAI, April 27 (UNI) Delhi cricket captain Ajay Sharma today said in London that he had nothing to do with any match-fixing scandal, as reported by an Indian magazine.
I am prepared to declare my assets and stand scrutiny to clear my name, he told total-cricket website here from Lancashire where he is contracted to play league cricket.
The Delhi-based publication had given a blow-by-blow account of the calls Sharma made to former skipper Mohammad Azharuddin during the recent allegedly-rigged tour of South Africa here. The magazine has alleged that he may have connections with fugitives wanted by the Indian police for crimes and also match-fixing as he took a flight to London via Dubai. Sharma refutes and said he had tickets to prove he took a direct flight to London on April 20.
I have come to England to play professional cricket contrary to the report that I am running away from the law, said Sharma, who despite a superb domestic show was a flop international player.
Sharma expressed shock when his wife yesterday narrated the the flimsy report to him on the phone and said he was prepared to disclose his assets if need be.
Providing further details of his wealth, he said he still moved around in his 1993 model Maruti Zen. I only have one flat at Vasant Kunj in Delhi and am a regular income tax payee as a Deputy Manager in the Central Warehousing Commission, he said.
Countering suspicions over his association with Azharuddin he said, Azhar and my friendship dates back to 1987. We are thick pals. We used to share rooms. I always wish him well. Even when he was going to play in Sharjah I called up to wish him luck. I gave him a cricket bat in 1992 when he had a lean patch. Soon after he came back with a big 100 in the Calcutta Test. Azhar is very superstitious, since then he insists that I should get bats for him, he said.
Sharma and his wife have played host to the Azharuddin couple several times in Delhi. Is it a crime to get along with ex-colleagues? he said.
Sharma also said his
employers had granted him leave for 133 days and Britain
has handed over a work permit to play. He denied having
any financial stake in the Delhi television production
company Target Sports International. The only connection
was his friendship with owner Navin Kohli, Sharma
Govt appeals against bail to Kishan Kumar
NEW DELHI, April 27 (PTI) The government today challenged in the Supreme Court a Delhi High Court order granting anticipatory bail to film star Kishan Kumar in connection with the sensational match-fixing case.
Listing the case for tomorrow, a three-judge Bench headed by Chief Justice A.S. Anand directed that no order should be passed in any proceedings before any court on the basis of the observations made in the High Court order.
Mentioning the matter before the Bench, Additional Solicitor General Kirit Raval contended that the observations made by the High Court while granting anticipatory bail to Kishan Kumar cast doubts whether an offence under Section 420 (cheating) of IPC was made out or not.
He said it was liable to be misconstrued in various proceedings before the Magistrates court and might cause grave and irreparable harm.
Rajesh Kalras bail plea
NEW DELHI, April 27 A Delhi court today rejected the bail application of Rajesh Kalra, an accused in match-fixing case in which South African cricket captain Hansie Cronje is allegedly involved.
The Metropolitan Magistrate, Mr K.S. Mohi rejected the bail application of Rajesh Kalra saying his release on bail would hamper the investigation of the case as the other accused in the match-fixing case are still to be arrested and interrogated.
Rajesh Kalras counsel, Mr Vineet Malhotra argued for his bail in the match-fixing case by the Delhi police.
The counsel argued that since Bollywood actor, Kishan Kumar, another accused in the match-fixing case was granted anticipatory bail by the Delhi High Court, Kalra should also be granted bail on the basis of parity.
Kalra is the only accused in the match-fixing case who has been interrogated by the Delhi police and Enforcement Department.
The Delhi High Court
granted anticipatory bail to Kishan Kumar on April 25. He
has not been interrogated by the police as yet. Only ED
officials have so far interrogated him in connection with
the FERA case. At present he is on remand with the ED.
Ban guilty players for life: ACB chief
MELBOURNE, April 27 (AFP) The Australian Cricket Board Chairman, Mr Dennis Rogers, today called for players found guilty of match fixing to be banned for life.
Mr Rogers will attend an emergency two-day meeting of the International Cricket Council executive at Lords next week to formulate tactics to battle the bribery scandal that was exposed when former South Africa captain Hansie Cronje was charged with taking money from Indian bookmakers.
My own view, and its a personal view I will take to London with me, is that if match-fixing has been proven and if a player is proven beyond doubt to be guilty of match fixing, then its only sensible that the cricket public and administrators should respond and say its life, you dont play again for life.
Theres no second chances on this. If there is anyone who is responsible who is a player, then they have no right to play, he said.
Mr Rogers, an ICC executive board member, said it was unrealistic to expect a cure for match-fixing to emerge after just two days.
The game belongs to the people and we therefore owe it to the people to get to the bottom of it.
He said that meant developing a status report and then moving forward to rid ourselves of this wretched curse.
Im not sure we can get to the bottom of it, What we can do is put a process in place that tries to bring that about as a matter of urgency.
Mr Rogers said reducing the number of one-day cricket internationals would have no effect in stamping out match-fixing.
If the people want to see those games, let them see them, he said.
But theyve got to be games the public can trust, thats the point. The most important thing is to clean this wretched curse up and lets get back to what we know has been a great game that has stood the test of time.
National Games on schedule:
NEW DELHI, April 27 The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) President Suresh Kalmadi ruled out the possibility of the National Games, slated to be held in Punjab from November 5 to 16 this year, being postponed.
He told The Tribune here today, after signing a Memorandum of Understanding between the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) that the National Games will be held as scheduled.
Mr Kalmadi said the three-member committee, comprising Union Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, National Games Organising Committee secretary-general I.S. Bindra and Punjab Olympic Association (POA) secretary Arvind Khanna, which was constituted by the POA to interact with the IOA for seeking the postponement of the games, was yet to meet him.
But I dont think there is going to be any change in the dates of the National Games, the IOA chief said. The IOA secretary-general, Mr Randhir Singh, also categorically asserted that there would be no change in the schedule of the National Games.
At the most, the games may be deferred by a week, as the Olympic Council of Asia meeting is to be held on November 11 and 12 in which Indias bid for the 2006 Asian Games would be considered, Mr Randhir Singh explained.
Mr Kalmadi said the signing of the MOU with outgoing CII chairman Rahul Bajaj was a landmark decision, as the Indian industry would be deriving the maximum benefit of the 100 per cent tax exemption given to corporate sponsorships for sports events in the Union Budget.
Its high time the CII focussed on Olympic sport, and not just cricket alone, which is played by only seven or eight countries in the world. This is a land of cricket and more cricket, Mr Kalmadi said.
As a mark of gratitude,
the IOA president announced the appointment of Mr Rahul
Bajaj as a vice-president of the IOA. Former IOA
president Vidya Charan Shukla, Mr Umrao Singh, Indian
Hockey Association president K.P.S. Gill, Indian
Womens Hockey Association president Mrs Vidya
Stokes and former Union Minister K.P. Singh Deo were
among those present at the brief function held in the
Mixed day for India in Fed Cup
NEW DELHI, April 27 (UNI) It was a mixed day for India as they lost to top seed and host Japan 0-2 but defeated Kazakhsthan 3-0 in the Asia Oceania Fed Cup Tennis Championship in Osaka today.
Fancied Japan, spearheaded by AI Sugiyama, brushed aside the Indian challenge.
According to information received by the All-India Tennis Association (AITA) here, neither Sai Jayalakshmi nor Nirupama Vaidyanathan could put up any sort of resistance against the much higher-ranked Japanese players.
The Indians, who raised great expectations after defeating fourth seed Thailand on the opening day, found the Japanese much tougher rivals.
Jayalakshmi went down tamely to Shinobu Asagoe 3-6, 1-6 and then Indias number one player Nirupama lost to Japans number one Sugiyama 2-6, 3-6. As Japan took an unbeatable 2-0 lead, the teams decided not to play the inconsequential doubles.
With a days play lost due to rain yesterday, International Tennis Federation (ITF) decided that if a team takes a decisive 2-0 lead, there will be no mandatory doubles match.
Later in the day, India humbled Kazakhstan 3-0 to record their second win in the three matches.
Sai outplayed Alissa Velts 6-2, 6-3, and Nirupama routed V. Khazova 6-2, 6-2. Despite India taking the winning 2-0 lead, both teams agreed to play the doubles to gain more match practice.
Manisha Malhotra and radhika combined well to beat Alissa Velts and Khazova 7-6 (5), 6-4.
Brazil escape scare, Peru hold Chile
RID DE JANEIRO, April 27 (Reuters) Argentina hit another four goals in the South American World Cup qualifiers while Chiles bad start to the competition continued as they were held at home by Peru in a tense 1-1 draw.
Trouble erupted in La Paz where a linesman was struck by a bottle thrown from the crowd during Bolivias 1-1 draw with Colombia, and there was controversy when Colombia coach Luis Augusto Garcia later complained that playing at mid-day and at 3,600 metres above sea level was inhuman.
Brazil suffered an Almighty fright yesterday as they fell behind at home to modest Ecuador before fighting back to win 3-2, helped by two goals from Barcelonas Rivaldo, and claim their first win of the tournament, while Paraguay overcame Uruguay by a single goal in Asuncion.
Argentina, who beat Chile 4-1 in their opening game yesterday, repeated the dose in Maracaibo where two goals from Ariel Ortega and one apiece from Roberto Ayala and Hernan Crespo gave them a 4-0 win over minnows Venezuela and a maximum six points.
Parma striker Crespo, standing in for the injured Batistuta and eager to make a good impression, scored the best goal in the 81st minute as he cut inside a defender, fooled goalkeeper Rafael Dudamel with a dummy and then scored into an empty net. Their opponents were left bottom of the group with no points.
Peru went second with four points, forcing a 1-1 draw away to their old rivals in a fixture that always generates high feelings.
They had lost 4-1 on their previous visit, a result that effectively sent Chile to the 1998 World Cup at their expense. The Chileans went on to pip Peru for the last South American spot in France on goal difference.
This time, Juan Jayo fired Peru ahead in the 38th minute with a long-range shot before West Ham defender Javier Margas equalised three minutes later with a low drive from a free kick.
Tension was always close to the surface. Margas was lucky not to be sent off for elbowing an opponent and the two goalscorers nearly came to blows after the final whistle, having to be pulled part by other players.
Earlier yesterday, Bolivias match was halted for 10 minutes after a linesman was hit by a plastic bottle, one of a number that rained down on him after he disallowed a goal for the home team for offside.
Bolivia captain Erwin Sanchez, who had scored his teams goal, was sent off for headbutting the referee in the confusion that followed, then Colombias Mario Yepes was dismissed for a wild tackle when play started again.
Jairo Castillo gave the Colombians a precious point in difficult conditions.
It is very
difficult to overcome the adversities of playing at this
time, said Colombia coach Luis Augusto Garcia of
the noon kick-off. Lets see if other teams
manage to get a point playing at this time, which in
truth is inhuman, he added, complaining of
the burning sun and the altitude.
Bolivia have one point and Colombia two.
Gade, Camilla Martin enter quarters
GLASGOW, April 27 (AFP) World number one Peter Gade was made to battle hard in defence of his European mens singles title here yesterday, needing to save four game points to avoid going the full distance against Dicky Palyama, the former European junior champion from the Netherlands, before reaching the quarterfinals.
Gade found it harder than usual to control the shuttles and difficult to adapt to the difference between the two ends. But the champion was also ambushed by his young opponents enterprising attack and was slightly fortunate to finish him in straight games 15-5, 17-16.
Palyama took advantage of Gades problems with the drift in the second game to advance to leads of 9-5 and 12-9. He arrived early to the net and played deftly when he got there, sometimes setting up chances to attack the resulting lifts.
The titleholder made a run from 9-12 to 13-12 which looked likely to carry him to victory, and when he reached 14-14 the umpire incorrectly called match-point to the Dane.
But in fact Palyama had opted for a three-point setting, and shortly came within a whisker of winning it. On his second game point, at 16-14, the Dutch players blocked lift sailed just a couple of inches wide.
Gade next plays Tomas Johansson, runner-up six years ago in Den Bosch, but only two and not three of his fellow Danes were able to join him in the last eight.
Fourth-seeded Anders Boesen, who narrowly survived the previous day against German Oliver Pongratz, failed to pull it off again against Martin Hagberg of Sweden.
The four points which Hagberg took from 11-11 to win the first game proved crucial, because when Boesen made his second comeback in two days he did not have enough energy to complete the job, fading to a 11-15, 15-7, 8-15 defeat.
However, Kenneth Jonassen and Poul-Erik Hoyer made it a Danish trio in the last eight, with the Olympic champion Hoyer looking particularly well-placed for progress further in his first tournament in two months.
Gades girl-friend, Camilla Martin, also reached the last eight in defence of the European title, next unseeded Dutch Lonneke Janssen, who saved a match point at 10-10 in the second game against a tiring seventh seed, Margit Borg, and ran out a 1-11, 11-10, 11-6 winner against the Swede.
Three Danes similarly reached the quarterfinals of the womens singles, with Mette Sorensen and Mette Pedersen making untroubled progress.
Meanwhile, Englands leading singles player Peter Knowles, who withdrew from the mens singles on Tuesday citing a pulled gluteal muscle, has been omitted from his countrys team for the Thomas Cup world team finals in Kuala Lumpur in two weeks time (May 11-16).
Knowles claimed that he had been punished for his withdrawal on Tuesday one day after having qualified for the Olympic Games but England manager Finn Traerup phrased it differently.
CII to help IOA to promote sports
NEW DELHI, April 27 (PTI) Paving way for enhanced corporate involvement in sports, the Indian Olympic Association and the Confederation of Indian Industry today signed a memorandum of understanding to promote Olympic sports in the country.
The MoU, calling for joint endeavour on part of the CII and the IOA to encourage, support and guide through mutually agreed plans of cooperation, to promote sports in India was signed by CII President Rahul Bajaj and IOA chief Suresh Kalmadi on the sidelines of the industry bodys national conference and annual session here.
The memorandum, following close on the heels of the 100 percent tax exemption for sponsorship of sports, announced in the recent budget, makes way for increased sponsorship of sports activities by the CII members, development of sports infrastructure and cooperation between the corporate sector and national sports federations.
The CII will also support the IOA in organising the Afro-Asian games here next year and New Delhis bid for the 2006 Asian Games and the subsequent holding of the event in case India wins the vote, Mr Bajaj told the gathering of industrialists and sports administrators.
The CII and the IOA will jointly try to persuade the government to pursue policies to promote sports in the country, he added.
Describing it as a red letter day for Indian sports, Mr Kalmadi urged the corporate sector to promote Olympic sports as it would give them more mileage as Olympic sports enjoy more support of the masses as compared to cricket.
A joint committee comprising representatives of both the IOA and the CII will be set up soon to implement the MoU and regularly review the progress.
Mr Kalmadi said the CII and the IOA would follow up on the report submitted recently by the K P Singh Deo committee, set up to plan a strategy for winning gold medals in the 2006 Asian Games and 2008 Olympics.
The memorandum includes
corporate involvement in building up sports
infrastructure in the country, funding of Indian teams
for various international events and strengthening of
domestic sports programme through sponsorship of
competitions, including the National Games, and coaching
Ashok to lead India in junior golf
NEW DELHI, April 27 (PTI) Teenager Ashok Kumar will spearhead the Indian challenge in both the team and individual events of the 22nd Asia Pacific Junior Golf Championship to be held at Calcutta next month.
Ashok Kumar, the 17-year-old India No 1, will lead a four-member Indian team also including Gurbaz Mann, Aditya Singh and Karan Talwar in the May 2 to 5 tournament at the Royal Calcutta Golf Club, a Delhi Golf Club release said here today.
Nitin to lead
NEW DELHI, April 27 Nitin Thareja will lead a 13-member Delhi Blues Club under-14 cricket team in a tournament being organised by the Chandigarh Cricket Association at Mohali from April 28 to May 2.
The team: Nitin Thareja,
Akash Chauhan, Arun Chowdhary, Jaideep Chowdhary, Ankit
Kaistha, Rameez Niyamat, Hammad Ahmed Khan, Raman
Chowdhary, Amit Ghai, Rajat Gupta, Davinder Kumar, Aditya
Aima and Akhand. Joginder Singh will be the manager.
Punjab to meet TN in final
VIJAYAWADA, April 27 (UNI) Holders Punjab will clash with runners-up Tamil Nadu for the title in the 27th All-India Electricity Boards Basketball Championship here.
In the first semifinal last night, Orissa, who entered the semifinals for the first time, gave a tough fight, first 15 minutes, to Punjab who found it initially difficult to adjust to the hot climatic conditions with the mercury soaring to 42.9 degrees celsius.
The Punjab team, coached by international Amrit Pal, recognised themselves and Ravindra Pal Singh (12) and Ajay Pal Singh (13) excelled in long range shooting to enable their team to lead 32-15 at half-time and finally win 98-27.
In the second semifinal, Tamil Nadu, captained by Shiv Kumar, who led the state team which won this years national championship, faced some stiff resistance from Kerala before winning 76-81.
The Tamil Nadu players got an early break, launched quick attacks and scored baskets to lead 39-28 at half-time.
Kerala gave a tough time to their neighbours with Gopalakrishnan (21) and Jacob (13) going in for drive in shots and long range shooting and pivot Ramesh collecting 800D rebounds.
Hike in Wimbledon prize money
LONDON, April 27 (Reuters) Wimbledon organisers today said their total prize money for the 2000 championships would increase 6.1 per cent to 8.06 million (12.69 million).
They resisted pressure from top women players to give them prize money equality with the men but announced total prize money for the women would rise 7.9 per cent compared with 4.8 per cent for the men.
In a statement the organsiers said it was a move aimed at recognising and further promoting an increase in the depth of the womens game.
The mens singles champion will receive £ 477,500 ($ 752,000) compared with £ 455,000 ($ 716,500) last year, while the womens champion will win £ 430,000 ($ 677,200) compared with £ 409,500 ($ 644,900) in 1999. Equal prize money has developed into a major issue among women players who believe the rivalries between Martina Hingis, Lindsay Davenport and the Williams sisters has made the womens game more popular than the mens.
Only the U.S. Open of the four grand slams pays the same to the mens and womens singles champions.
Last year Wimbledon
organisers slammed womens demands for equality as
unreasonable and damaging. In January Hingis talked of a
possible boycott by women if the increasing popularity of
womens tennis was not matched by equal prize money.
UPCA sail into final
LUCKNOW, April 27 (UNI) Uttar Pradesh Cricket Association (UPCA) sailed into the final, defeating holders Indian Airlines, Delhi, by two wickets in the semi-final of the Golden Jubilee 50th All India Sheesh Mahal Cricket Tournament here today.
Electing to bat, Airlines were all out for 112 runs in 36.4 overs. In reply, the UPCA scored the required runs losing eight wickets in 37.4 overs.
Airlines began their innings disastrously, losing the first wicket in the first delivery of Ashish Zaidis second over when J. Arun Kumar was declared leg before for two runs with the total score at four. At 36, the other opener Vijay Dahiya also returned to pavilion, bowled by Zaidi for 11.
Airlines lost half the side for only 50. Batsmen back in the pavilion soon were Kumar (2), Dahiya (11), Munish Kumar (19), Ishan Gonda (1) and Ashok Singh (0). Shafiq Khan (24) and Subhash Chowdhury (26) carried the score to 87 at which point the former was caught behind off Gyanendra Pandey for 24. He faced 61 deliveries and scored 24 runs.
Pandey also claimed the wickets of Harbhajan Singh (7), Vineet Jain (7) and A. Qayyoom (3). Airlines were all out for 112 in 36.4 overs.
The second-year students of the tractor mechanic trade won the volleyball title easily. In kabaddi, second-year (surveyor trade) boys won the title.
Staff members of the institute also participated in the meet. Mr Jagdish Singh Dhillon, Principal of the institute, presided over the prize distribution function.
Mr Sachin Sharma, General Secretary of the Punjab Youth Congress, gave away the prizes.
Neha in final
Tara Iyer defeated Parul Goswami, also of Delhi, 6-2, 6-2 in the other semi-final.
Neha in partnership with her sister, Simar, also entered the doubles final in the girls under16 section. they will meet Andhra pair of Bhavna V. and Mansi Mody.
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