|Saturday, May 13, 2000,
India beat Malaysia to enter final
|Charges against Kapil to
MUMBAI, May 12 Indian cricket captain Sourav Ganguly feels the sensational allegations made by former cricket board chief Inderjit Singh Bindra against national team coach Kapil Dev are bound to put more pressure on the team during the May 28-June 7 Asia Cup in Dhaka.
Sentence without trial: Chetan
LUCKNOW, May 12 Former Indian cricket team opener Chetan Chauhan has termed the allegations of match-fixing against some Indian players as a sentence without trial, saying the authorities concerned should have been approached rather than the media.
Andre Agassi goes down to Hrbaty
KUALA LUMPUR, May 12 (PTI) Arjun Halappas twin first half strikes lifted India to a 2-1 victory over fighting Malaysia for a final meeting against Korea as well as an automatic qualifying spot for next years Junior World Cup mens hockey championship.
India, runners-up in the 1997 Milton Keynes Junior World Cup, shot into a 2-0 lead before the plucky Malaysians pulled off a goal 20 seconds from the final hooter in the well-fought second semifinal at the Bukit Jalil Stadium here today.
South Korea outplayed Japan 4-1 in the first semifinal to also book their berth for the championship to be held at Hobart, Australia next year. Lee Jung Seon (9th and 27th), Kim Joung Goo (11th) and Yoon Sung Hoon (70th) scored for Korea after Watanabe Yusuke put Japan ahead with a stunning first minute strike.
Malaysia and Japan will meet to decide the third qualifying spot for the World Cup.
India applied early pressure by forcing penalty corners in the sixth, seventh and eighth minutes as Malaysians seemed to wilt under the pressure of playing in front of a packed home crowd of over 15,000.
In the 16th minute, after the midfield had somewhat settled down, Deepak Thakur sped into the circle and saw his hit rebound off the goalkeepers pads. But Halappa, who had followed him, picked up the ball and smartly tapped it in to put India into lead.
India increased the lead in the 28th minute when Gagan Ajit Singh, who was just trying to settle in, dribbled in and unleashed a shot and the Malaysian goalkeeper Kumar Subramanium squatted on the ball.
The umpire pointed to the spot to the delight of the Indian players and Arjun Halappa converted the stroke for his and Indias second goal.
Just when it looked that India would dominate the proceedings, the defence started blundering with first Bimal Lakra delaying a clearance letting Malaysia earn a penalty corner.
The hosts earned three consecutive penalty corners with one coming with only five seconds left in the first half.
But goalkeeper Devesh Chauhan did well to charge out each time the Malaysian flicks to let India stay 2-0 ahead at the break. In an evenly-balanced second half, Malaysia tried to break through but the Indian tactics of packing the midfield paid off.
India had two forwards Deepak Thakur and Gagan Ajit Singh continuously prodding the Malaysian defence earning a couple of chances. The hosts goalkeeper, after an indifferent first half, did a good job at keeping the Indians away.
Malaysia earned six penalty corners in the last 10 minutes of the game, but Devesh Chauhan did the job well to keep the rivals at bay.
KUALA LUMPUR, may 12 (UNI) National champion Gopichand could not inspire his squad to great heights in the Thomas Cup finals tie against Denmark here today as he lost out tamely to the Danish No. 1 Peter Gade Christensen, ranked world No 1 currently.
Fresh from his wins at the European Championships and Korean Open, Christensen was in terrific form as he carved out a 15-1, 15-6 win for his country in the first singles match. Denmark defeated India 5-0.
The Indian champion never got going and was slower in his movements as compared to the Dane whom he had played once before. The Danish team looking for their first ever win in Thomas Cup after losing out in six finals since the inception of the cup in 1949, is one of the favourites here for the year 2000 championships. They blanked out India 5-0 without much of a bother as apart from Gopichand no other player was expected to give the Danes any fight in any case.
Gopi served short and his clears were also in middle of the court most of the time. The Danish star was therefore able to attack at will. Gopi got his first point at 0-6 in the first game. His normal net control deserted him all the time and his defence was far too weak today. I never got settled in the match and my timing also was not to my satisfaction. The Indians have practised here at the air-conditioned Putra stadium for only two sessions.
Vijay Deep Singh and Marcose Bristow crashed to an expected 6-15, 4-15 defeat to Lundgaard Hansen and Lars Paaske, world ranked eighth, while Nikhil Kanetkar could manage only 6 and 7 points against Poul Erik Hoyer, the reigning 35-year-old Olympic champion and world ranked No. 3.
As far as India were concerned it was left to Siddhartha Jain, the French Open champion and the Scottish Open runner-up to give some hopes to India in a hopeless situation. He fought gamely but in the end lost out to world No 9 Kenneth Jonasson 16-17, 9-15.
MUMBAI, May 12 (PTI) Indian cricket captain Sourav Ganguly feels the sensational allegations made by former cricket board chief Inderjit Singh Bindra against national team coach Kapil Dev are bound to put more pressure on the team during the May 28-June 7 Asia Cup in Dhaka.
Ganguly, now in England playing Lancashire county, has talked to a cricket website from Manchester on these allegations and their likely impact on the team.
Maybe yes. At least mentally itll be tougher. In any international match, there is always this intense pressure of performing according to the countrys expectations. Now, this thing will add more pressure, he has told the website.
This is at variance with the view of selection committee chairman Chandu Borde and cricket board secretary Jaywant Lele who said after choosing the 25 probables for the Asia Cup in Mumbai that the team morale was not likely to be affected by the allegations.
The man in the eye of the storm, Kapil Dev, has conveyed to the board his intention of going to Dhaka as the teams coach, laying at rest speculations that he may step down in the wake of the allegations.
Ganguly has also expressed his anguish at the trend of persons going to the media and making allegations of match-fixing instead of going to the concerned authority and showing their evidence.
If youve any proof, thats fine. Go to the authority concerned, show your evidence. Why are they going to the media without any proof to support their allegations? This trend should be stopped immediately, Ganguly has been quoted as saying by the website to a pointed query on the matter.
The skipper expressed his surprise at the non-inclusion of Karnataka seamer Venkatesh Prasad in the list of 25 probables chosen by the selectors for the Dhaka event when asked whether he was satisfied with the selected players.
Yes, but I was a little surprised with the omission of Venky (Venkatesh Prasad). He bowled well in Sharjah (tri-nation tournament in March) too, the Bengal stalwart said.
About the difficulties in adjusting from the cold English summer to the hot and humid conditions expected in Dhaka, Ganguly said he would not face any problems as he had been brought up under such conditions.
Let me reach there. Ill adapt sooner than any other person will. Im confident about that, he said.
Ganguly feels the team has to improve its performance and for this to happen there should be a complete stoppage of such allegations.
I know every
member of the national side is thinking on the same
lines. And to assist us, let there be a full stop to
these immature comments and baseless allegations. These
not only affect the alleged cricketer, but also the
national team. Its bad for the credibility of the
game too, he said.
LUCKNOW, May 12 (UNI) Former Indian cricket team opener Chetan Chauhan has termed the allegations of match-fixing against some Indian players as a sentence without trial, saying the authorities concerned should have been approached rather than the media.
Chauhan, a prominent member of the Indian cricket team of the 1970s and 1980s, told reporters that various allegations had been levelled against former and present players but only in the media.
The media could not be blamed as they had to publish what had been fed to them, he added.
Without naming former president, of the BCCI, Mr I.S. Bindra, and former allrounder Manoj Prabhakar, Chauhan said since the inquiry had been entrusted to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) , it should be provided with all the details anyone had about the match-fixing. I am not suggesting who is guilty or who is not, but the proper forum should have taken care of this issue, he pointed out.
Expressing satisfaction over the CBI inquiry ordered into the whole affair, he said the CBI should be asked to submit its report early so that the confusion was cleared.
After various media reports and a series of allegations and counter-allegations, the CBI inquiry would now put a logical end to all these controversies.
The former BJP MP from Amroha in Uttar Pradesh, said Manoj Prabhakar had been speaking to the media for the past four or five years on the issue. He should have gone to the authorities concerned and demanded an inquiry into it, he opined.
In a recent interview to CNN Mr I.S. Bindra had said that it was Kapil Dev who had offered Rs 25 lakh to Manoj Prabhakar for throwing away a match in 1994. Both Mr Bindra and Prabhakar should now go to the CBI with the evidence, Chauhan suggested.
He also questioned Prabhakars demand for security if he disclosed the name of the guilty. He has already taken Kapil Devs name. It is ridiculous if he feels threatened from his former team mate, he said.
Chauhan, however, said the allegations against Kapil Dev were hard to believe.
The flurry of reports on the issue has confused everyone and the CBI inquiry is the only answer to this, he added.
In a reply he said the game of the cricket had been over commercialised which was one of the reasons for the growing shadow of doubt over the players. Under the present circumstances one cannot be sure about anything in this regard unless an inquiry is held.
He, however, opposed the idea of suspending international matches till the inquiry was completed. Earlier, Indian coach Kapil Dev had said the players were not in the best frame of mind to play.
DUBAI, May 12 (UNI) Former Pakistani skipper Rashid Latif, who shocked the cricket world by levelling match-fixing charges against his own team-mates,has alleged that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) was trying to protect the players.
Reacting to PCB chairman Tauqir Zias reported statement that there was no evidence to punish Pakistani cricketers for match-fixing, Latif told Gulf News The PCB is trying to protect the players. I have given enough proof and am shocked at General Zias statement. I submitted all the proof I had before the Qayyum Commission and even photocopies of cheques. Now they claim that there is no evidence. I cannot understand it.
The Qayyum committee, which was formed after Latifs accusation, submitted its report in October last year. Recently, Justice Qayyum reportedly stated that he had recommended action against seven Pakistani players. Following this and subsequent demand from the International Cricket Council (ICC), the PCB agreed to make the report public within nine days.
The PCB chairman recently stated that there has been no planned match-fixing. Justice Qayyum has,however, proposed bans and fines against some players only because of their non-cooperation with the inquiry.
To this, Latif said just because they (the players) did not answer questions or cooperate with the inquiry commission does not mean they are not guilty. It is a clear move by the PCB to protect the players.
Latif felt that the ICC had been slack on the match-fixing issue. Three years back, I sent a fax to ICC chief executive David Richards drawing his attention to match-fixing and other matters. He did not take notice of it and did not even bother to write back to me. Today he states that amnesty will be provided to the people who come forward with evidence. This is hypocrisy. Why was he silent all these years?
Mattoo named Chef-de-Mission
NEW DELHI, May 12 Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) president Ashok Kumar Mattoo will be the Chef-de-Mission of the Indian contingent for the Sydney Olympic Games to be held later this year. The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) is learnt to have finalised Mr Mattoos name for the post at a meeting of the executive committee at Jawaharlal Nehru stadium here yesterday.
Mr Mattoo had accompanied the Indian contingent as Chef-de-Mission for the South Asian Federation Games held in Kathmandu almost 14 years ago.
Meanwhile, there is some hiccup regarding the number of probables to be included in the hockey camp in preparation for the Olympics. While the Indian Hockey Federation (IHF) would prefer to have 44 players in the camp, starting in Bangalore on May 18, the Sports Authority of India (SAI) and the Sports Ministry want the number to be restricted to just 24.
IHF secretary Jyoti Kumaran is learnt to have requested the SAI to allow the federation to select 44 players for the Olympic camp, keeping an eye on the 2002 Asian Games as well, but the SAI does not want not more than 24 players, as it prefers to completely focus on the Olympic preparation, as there is enough time left to concentrate on the Asian Games. Even the Sports Ministry is reportedly of the view that its better to concentrate on the job on hand, than cluttering too many things in one camp.
As a compensation, the SAI and Sports Ministry are keen to implement the suggestion that a couple of foreign teams be invited to play matches against the Indian team, before they depart for Sydney. The teams likely to be invited for the friendly matches are Malaysia and one from Europe. Sources said there was also a proposal to invite the South Korean national team, if they decided to skip the Olympic Games.
The South Korean Government is reported not to be very keen to field the hockey team for the Olympics, as it feels that according to the present rating of the national team, they are not likely to figure among even the first eight. The team management is not interested in the hockey squad finishing ninth or tenth, or may be below that order.
Hence, there is a move to keep the hockey team away from the Sydney games. If South Korea pull out of the Olympics, Argentina are likely to take their place.
Coming back to the Indian team, sources in the SAI quote the example of the womens hockey team, who failed to qualify for the Olympics, in the qualifying championships held at Milton Keynes in Britain, because the preparatory camp was disturbed with a mindless display of scheduling by the Indian Womens Hockey Federation.
Sources allege that after the Indian girls had done exceptionally well in the Asia Cup, finishing runners-up to Asian Games champions South Korea, in November 1999 in New Delhi, seven Railways girls were released from the camp at Patiala, to play for their institution, and soon after that 16 other girls were also released to play in the national championships at Jabalpur. This completely unsettled the national camp, and the girls expectedly fared poorly at the Olympic qualifier, though the absence of four of the key players indeed affected the prospects of the team.
The mens hockey camp will be held at Bangalore from May 18 to September 1, and the SAI is ensuring that the best of facilities are provided to the players. It is learnt that SAI Executive Director (teams wing) Maj O.P. Bhatia has accepted the proposal to put up the hockey players at the Chinnaswamy cricket stadium though the room rent there is reportedly around Rs 600 per day. We have given them the best of facilities, and its now upto the players to deliver (the gold!), remarked a source in the SAI.
ROME, May 12 (AFP) World number one Andre Agassi crashed out of the tennis Masters Series event here last evening, as Slovakias Dominik Hrbaty took revenge in a 6-4, 6-4 third round victory.
The top seeded American was under constant pressure from Hrbaty, a losing finalist at last months Masters Series event at Monte Carlo also on clay, and put on an erratic centre court performance.
Too often let down by his groundstrokes, Agassi managed to pull out some superb winners - to the delight of a Foro Italico crowd but could do nothing to stop 15th seeded Hrbaty breaking to win each set.
For the Slovak, it was sweet revenge after Agassi beat him in the semi-finals of the 1999 French Open, on the Americans road to the title.
This time, Agassi felt he hadnt made life difficult enough for his opponent. He certainly played well today, said the American. He really likes the ball with a certain pace and I probably could have changed it up a little bit more and tried to get the ball out of his wheelhouse.
But he was hitting it with conviction and hitting it pretty consistently. I thought he served well on some big points... And he played two good games at 4-5 in both sets.
Agassi said he would decide later whether or not to play in Hamburg next week, before kicking off his title defence at Roland Garros.
Hrbaty now meets Spanish 10th seed Alex Corretja, who outclassed Fabrice Santoro 6-2, 6-3 in a one-sided night match, summed up by Corretjas 15 winners in the first set to the Frenchmans three.
Argentinas Mariano Puerta, who bundled out Russian second seed Yevgeny Kafelnikov on Wednesday, beat the 16th seeded Spaniard Juan Carlos Ferrero in a baseline slugfest 7-6 (7/5), 3-6, 6-4.
Ferrero, 20 years old and voted ATP newcomer of the year last month, showed his huge potential as a stroke-player and server, but towards the end was simply outgunned by the powerfully-built Argentinian.
But there was no such grief for Aussie teenager Lleyton Hewitt, seeded ninth here, who overpowered eighth seed Thomas Enqvist of Sweden 7-6 (8/6), 2-6, 6-3.
Hewitt, 19, and a winner of three tournaments this year at Adelaide, Sydney and Scottsdale, is back in action after taking four weeks out to recharge his batteries after playing Davis Cup for Australia in April.
They will be joined in the quarters by defending champion Gustavo Kuerten, who progressed without hitting a ball after his Moroccan opponent Younes El Aynaoui withdraw from the tournament with a heel injury.
Kuerten will play Albert Costa, who beat fellow Spaniard Francisco Clavet 6-3, 6-2 in their third round tie.
Swedish third seed
Magnus Norman also reached the last eight with a 7-6
(7/4), 6-1 win over Ukrainian Andrei Medvedev. He now
takes on Spains Felix Mantilla, who beat Romanian
qualifier Andrei Pavel 6-4, 6-2 in the last match of the
CHENNAI, May 12 (PTI) The Indian Hockey Federation has finalised a list of 32 probables for Sydney Olympics.
All the junior players who are playing in the junior Asia Cup at Kuala Lumpur have been included in the camp, according to a press release by IHF secretary general K. Jothikumaran here today.
Mr K.P.S. Gill, IHF President and Chairman of selection committee, had finalised the list here yesterday, Mr Jothikumaran said, adding a preparatory camp would be held for the probables from May 18 at Bangalore.
Following are the probables:
Goal keepers: Jude Menezes (Mumbai), Jagdish Ponnappa (IA), Devesh Chauhan (AI Academy), Edward Alloysis (PSB), Bharath Chetri (Centre of Excellence).
Fullbacks: Dilip Tirkey (IA), Lazrus Barla (IA), Dinesh Nayak (TN), Leniyappa (CoE), Bikkramjit Singh (Rlys), Kanwalpret Singh (Pun).
Midfielders: B.S. Saini (PSB), S.S. Gill (BPCL), Mohammad Riaz (IA), Ramandeep Singh (Pun), Thirumalvalavan (TN), Bimal Lakra (IA), Samsul Shouk (UP), Paramjit Singh (Services), Arjun Hallappa (CoE), Natarajan (TN).
Forwards: Dhanraj Pillay
(Mum), B.S. Dhillon (Pun), Sameer Dad (IA), Senthil (TN),
Mukesh Kumar (IA), Deepak Thakur (AI Academy), Gagan Ajit
Singh (BPCL), Harbajan Singh (BSF), Prabhjot Singh (AI
Academy), Inderjit Singh (Chd), Bipin Fernendez (CoE).
BRIDGETOWN, May 12 (AFP) Convinced ideal arrangements had been put in place to handle his ailing mother Pearl, family and friends coerced Brian Lara into making this summers visit to England with the West Indies cricket team.
The world awoke yesterday to hear Lara had extended his self-imposed exile from international cricket to the tour to England starting in three weeks and he was looking to retire from the game which has made him into a star. When Mr Mike Findlay, chairman of the West Indies selection panel, announced at a news conference here last evening that Lara would be paying another visit to England, the room was in complete shock.
BUCHAREST, May 12 (Reuters) The legs are ageing but Gheorghe Hagi will still be Romanias key man when he makes his final bow on the international stage at Euro 2000.
Now 35 and officially honoured as his countrys player of the century last December, the stocky playmaker is unlikely to be overshadowed by any of his younger team mates in his last tournament before retirement.
Hagis physique and ball skills earned him comparisons with Diego Maradona at his peak.
Seventeen years since his international debut, Hagi has remained a power to be reckoned with and has helped his Turkish club Galatasaray to four league titles in a row as well as a place in this seasons uefa Cup final.
His dazzling form in the uefa Cup suggests he could even be stronger now than when he helped Romania to their best-ever international performance, reaching the quarterfinals in the 1994 World Cup in the USA.
Hagi has captained Romania 61 times, playing in two European finals and three World Cup finals.
He has tried to retire from the international scene repeatedly but has been unable to resist the call of his countrymen.
Hagi first called it a day after the 1998 World Cup finals but came back for one match helping Romania beat Hungary for the first time in 63 years.
Supporters gave him a race horse and named a pastry after him in gratitude and begged him to continue.
Goalkeeper Bogdan Lobont was equally swept up in the emotional return, announcing Ill be happy to make Hagis bed every morning in our training camp.
The result was inevitable and Hagi announced last June that he would continue, helping Romania qualify for the European Championship finals with an unbeaten run in group seven.
My body and my heart tell me that I have to go on, he said at the time.
The midfielder then announced last January that he would play in Euro 2000 and his final appearance for Romania would be a friendly against Yugoslavia in Bucharest on August 22.
Hagi started out with Farul Constanta the Black Sea port club that has renamed their stadium after him Sportul Studentesc and Steaua Bucharest in Romania, before moving to Real Madrid in 1990 for $ 4.3 million.
His transfer fee record was only beaten by compatriot Adrian Ilie in 1997.
Hagi played for Italys Brescia for two years from 1992 and then joined Spanish side Barcelona until 1996, when he moved to Galatasaray.
He has said he is considering either returning home or moving to major league soccer in the USA after the European Championship finals.
president Mircea Sandu has also suggested that Hagi be
given the job of deputy national coach, provided he
decides to retire as a player. Hagi could be
Romanias coach after 2002, if he wants
to, he said.
CHANDIGARH, May 12 The meeting of the Tournament and Fixture Committee and the Executive Committee of the Punjab Cricket Association will be held on May 13 and May 14, respectively, according to Mr M.P. Pandove, Secretary, Punjab Cricket Association.
The Tournament and Fixtures Committee of the association is scheduled to meet at Dhruv Pandove Cricket Stadium, Baradari Gardens, Patiala, to discuss the domestic cricket programme for the year 2000-2001. The committee will also decided the dates of the various tournaments like summer league tournament; Katoch Shield, Dhruv Pandove Trophy and M.L. Markan Trophy as also the JP Attray tournament. The meeting will also allot dates for the inter-district tournaments, inter-school tournament, the inter-university tournaments and the under-22 inter-state invitational tournament.
The Executive Committee
of the association will meet on Sunday at PCA Cricket
Stadium, Mohali, to consider matters pertaining to recent
allegations of betting and match-fixing and other allied
matters, Mr Pandove added.
CHANDIGARH, May 12 Star footballer Manjit Singhs tragic demise more than eight years ago deprived the country of a good player and a coach. For his family it was an irreparable loss and his widow, along with the children, is still trying to come to terms with it.
Mrs Kamaljit Kaur, widow of the former international soccer star employed with the Sports Authority of India at the Sector 18 girls hostel here, is proud of her late husbands achievements. However, she feels that the rewards for Manjits services to the nation are not in consonance with his achievements. Manjit devoted his entire life to football. But none of his three children are ready to follow in his footsteps as their fathers achievements have not been duly recognised.
Manjit, who belonged to Kharar Acharwal village in Hoshiarpur district, was an inside left. He astonished everybody with his excellent ball control. In 1970, he helped India clinch the bronze medal in the Bangkok Asian Games. When he scored the all-important goal against 1966 Asian Games gold medallists, Japan. Manjits feat created shock waves across the country. Thereafter, he remained in the limelight for nearly 12 years with his unique style.
Manjit captained the Indian team several times. He was the skipper for the Merdeka Cup (1976), Presidents Cup (Seoul) (1977), Afghanistan (1976) and test matches against Russia and Germany. While playing for Punjab, East Bengal and BSF, he cornered glory at different places. Manjit represented India from 1970 and 1977 and Punjab from 1970 to 1981. He received several award, such as the Chandigarh Sports Journalists Association Award in 1976.
In the 1982 Asian Games petty politics lead to his exit from the team despite his outstanding performance during the previous year.
Surprisingly Manjits name was never considered for any major award of the country such as the Arjuna Award whereas less deserving players have already received the award. Contemporaries like Sudhir Karmakar and Magan Singh who played for shorter durations were given the award whereas Manjit was ignored. Manjit pleaded his case in writing but his plea was ignored for reasons best known to the authorities.
Subsequently, Manjit was shifted to Ferozepore whereas the hub of football activity was Mahilpur. Despite that Manjit continued coaching with dedication. On March 20, 1990, Manjit wrote a letter to the secretary, Punjab State Sport Council, to consider his name for the Maharaja Ranjit Singh Award the highest award in Punjab. He mentioned his achievements, including the bronze medal at the Asian Games in 1970, and how Punjab under his stewardship won the Santosh Trophy thrice (1970, 1974 and 1981) besides quoting other achievements.
tennis team in World Group
YAMUNANAGAR, May 12 The Indian boys U-14 tennis team returned victorious on Wednesday from Thailand after qualifying for the World Group from the Asia Oceana group of 16 nations. They beat seeded Indonesia, China and the Philippines on their way to the semifinals.
They, then beat second-seeded Australia to reach the finals for the first time. However, they lost to Thailand and were placed second in the tournament. Besides these two, Australia and Japan, placed third and fourth, respectively, also qualified to play in the World Group in the Czech Republic in August 2000. Suman kapur, the non-playing captain of the team said the team of Karan Rastogi (Mumbai), Tushar Liberhan (Chandigarh) and Divij Sharan (Delhi) performed exceedingly well.
Police in semis
KAPURTHALA, May 12 Punjab Police will clash with PSEB and BSF with Rest of Punjab in the mens section while Jalandhar will meet hosts Kapurthala and Ludhiana will take on Gurdaspur in the womens section in the semifinals of the Punjab Hot Weather Basketball Tournament, being played here.
Punjab Police, in their second league match against Rail Coach Factory did not have to struggle hard as railmen were no match for the star-studded police outfit. Punjab Police won the match 70-24 after leading 43-12 at lemon time.
BSF men faced tough opposition from agile and speedy Punjab Juniors to top their group. Though the security men had the advantage of height and experience, Punjab Juniors excelled in court craft and won the heart and applause of the spectators. BSF finally clinched the match 61-32 to book a berth in the semifinals. For BSF, Vipin Kumar was the top scorer with 16 points and Jasjot scored 10 points for the losers. In the womens section Jalandhar defeated Amritsar. Half time score was 23-8 in favour of Jalandhar.
In another match, Ludhiana thrashed Hoshiarpur 49-25, leading 28-11 at half time. Muktsar lost to Amritsar 13-24. Earlier muktsar has lost to Gurdaspur. Ludhiana defeated spirited Kapurthala 39-22.
bid for World Championship
PATIALA May 12 Even as the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has decided to bid for hosting the 2006 Asian Games, the All India Chess Federation (AICF) will also bid for hosting this years World Championship.
According to a top Patiala-based AICF office-bearer, the bid will be presented at the presidential board meeting of the FIDE in London on May 14 and 15.
The AICF sources say that the FIDE should easily grant the World Championship to India as the AICF has already successfully organised two Junior World Championships at Kozhikode in 1993 and 1998, besides many Asian, Commonwealth and GM tournaments.
It has been learnt that China and Morocco will also bid for hosting the event. Sources say that the FIDE has taken note of the successful organisation of the two World Junior Meets. Even the President of the FIDE, Mr Kirsan Iiyumzhinov, was impressed by the activities of the AICF.
However, India will bid only for hosting the first stage of the championships as Irans bid for staging the finals has already been approved by the FIDE. Iran will stage the competition from the semi-final stage onwards.
India will also bid for hosting the Womens World Championships to be held simultaneously with the mens tournament.
The venue of the championships for both men and women will be decided from among Mumbai, New Delhi and Calcutta. However, the AICF will bid to host the womens meet till the final.
Sources say that for sponsoring the mega events, several big corporate houses, including the information technology giant Wipro have come forward. P.Harikrishan, Indias youngest international master, and Aarthie Ramaswamy, the under-18 world champion, are being sponsored by Wipro in their search for the grandmaster titles.
The World Championships will be held in either the last week of November or the first week of December.
SHIMLA, May 12 (TNS) The Shimla District Cricket Association has expressed concern over lack of outdoor sports facilities in the state capital and urged the government to provide a modern stadium immediately.
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