SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
S P O R T S

Zaheer passes fitness test
Colombo, July 22
Left-arm speedster Zaheer Khan today passed a fitness test and would now be available for selection for India’s remaining matches in the Asia Cup cricket tournament. Fears that Zaheer’s old hamstring problem had surfaced again proved unfounded after team physiotherapist Andrew Leipus said the bowler was just suffering from spasms.



Zaheer Khan bowls during a practice session in Colombo on Thursday. — AP/PTI photo
Zaheer Khan bowls during a practice session in Colombo
In video: Indian cricketers in Sri Lanka feast on food by home chef. (28k, 56k)

Sachin’s approach was understandable
Sachin TendulkarThe Indian team has every reason to feel better after their clinical approach against Bangladesh. After their defeat against Sri Lanka, I was not sure whether skipper Sourav Ganguly was more concerned about the rustiness of the top order batsmen or the penetration of the bowlers.

Natwar meets Shahrayar Khan
ISLAMABAD:
Pakistan Cricket Board chief Shahrayar Khan, a former Foreign Secretary, apparently postponed his visit to Sri Lanka for the Asia Cup to meet his “old friend”, External Affairs Minister K. Natwar Singh.

Mani’s remarks silly: Azhar
Colombo, July 22
Lashing out at the International Cricket Council (ICC) chief Ehsan Mani’s remarks on his media accreditation for the Asia Cup tournament, former Indian captain Mohammad Azharuddin, facing life ban on charges of match-fixing, has said the issue was “silly” and the statement very immature.

Police disputes Gavaskar’s claim
Sunil Gavaskar VADODARA:
The city Police Commissioner said on Thursday that there was no record available to show that former cricketer Sunil Gavaskar had resigned from the board of Topline Shoes, a company in the centre of a misappropriation case, as he had claimed.


 

Euro 2004 boosted TV and sportswear purchases
Retail sales surged in June at their strongest pace in six months and at almost three times the rate expected as Euro 2004 boosted TV and sportswear purchases, official data showed on Thursday. The photo shows an England fan during the football tournament in Portugal. — Reuters

EARLIER STORIES
 
Key, Strauss pound Windies attack
London, July 22
Robert Key and Andrew Strauss smashed hundreds as England piled up 391 for 2 on the first day of the first Test match against the West Indies at Lord’s today. Key, inducted into the team in place of the injured Mark Butcher, remained unbeaten on 167 while Strauss was dismissed for 137. The two were involved in a partnership of 291, England’s best for the second wicket against the West Indies.








England opening batsman Andrew Strauss celebrates scoring a century during the first day of the first Test against the West Indies at Lords cricket ground, London, on Thursday. — Reuters photo
Andrew Strauss celebrates scoring a century

Soumyajit helps India win TT gold
New Delhi, July 22
Thirteen-year-old Soumyajit Sarkar made history, defeating Kim Gang Woog of Korea in the final of the Junior Asian Table Tennis Championship here today to help the country win its first-ever table tennis gold at the Asian level.

Athens-bound boxers walk out of national camp 
Patiala, July 22
The national boxing camp, which was being held at the NIS here in preparation for the Athens Olympics, came to an abrupt end this morning after all four Athens-bound pugilists decided to walk out of the camp, which was scheduled to run till August 6.

Brazil overcome Uruguay
Lima (Peru), July 22
Goalkeeper Julio Cesar blocked Vicente Sanchez’s shot as Brazil beat Uruguay 5-3 on penalties to reach the Copa America final against arch-rival Argentina.




Alex of Brazil rejoices after scoring the winning penalty shot as Uruguay’s goalkeeper Sebastian Viera sits dejected during their Copa America semifinal in Lima, Peru, on Wednesday. — AP/PTI photo
Alex of Brazil rejoices after scoring the winning penalty shot as Uruguay’s goalkeeper Sebastian Viera sits dejected during their Copa America semifinal in Lima

Keshav Mishra set to win golf title
New Delhi, July 22
Keshav Mishra, who rewrote record books with a stunning nine-under par 63 yesterday, is all set to claim the Royal Challenge Indian Golf Tour’s inaugural event — the Northern India Amateur title. Inspired by his record-breaking performance, the 26-year-old played another scintillating round of three-under 69 to extend his lead to 10 strokes, after the third round, at the Army Golf Course here today.

Serena Williams in action during her match against Eleni Daniilidou of Greece in the second round of the JP Morgan Chase Open
Serena Williams in action during her match against Eleni Daniilidou of Greece in the second round of the JP Morgan Chase Open in Carson, California, on Wednesday. Williams won 6-1, 7-6. — Reuters

Chandigarh to have hockey academy
Chandigarh, July 22
The Indian Women Hockey Federation (IWHF) today decided to start a hockey academy for junior girls (under-18) in Chandigarh after consulting the representatives of the women hockey associations of the northern region here today.

Punjab boxing meet begins
Sangrur, July 22
The 51st Punjab state senior boxing championship began at the war heroes’ stadium here. Sangrur boxers dominated the proceedings on the opening day. In the light heavy weight category, Pawan Kumar of Sangrur disposed of J.M. Singh of Ropar. In the bantam weight category, another Sangrur boxer, Kulwinder Singh, had no difficulty in beating Sant Ram of Ludhiana.

ICF lead in Rly chess
Patiala, July 22
Integrated Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai, accumulated 15 points to top the points table on day four of the 17th All-India Inter-Railway Chess Championship played on the DMW premises here today.

Jagtar to attend course in Budapest
Chandigarh, July 22
Women artistic gymnastic coach Jagtar Singh of Gurdaspur has been selected by the Gymnastic Federation of India for the international course in gymnastic to be held in Budapest from September 15 to December 8.

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Zaheer passes fitness test

Colombo, July 22
Left-arm speedster Zaheer Khan today passed a fitness test and would now be available for selection for India’s remaining matches in the Asia Cup cricket tournament.

Fears that Zaheer’s old hamstring problem had surfaced again proved unfounded after team physiotherapist Andrew Leipus said the bowler was just suffering from spasms.

A “relieved” Baroda paceman said he was taking things very carefully now as he did not want to break down again.

“I am relieved to have cleared the fitness test but am keeping my fingers crossed as I don’t want to break down again in a match,” said the 25-year-old who had to sit out of India’s Super League match against Bangladesh yesterday.

Zaheer came over to the ground this afternoon and went through a series of fitness tests under the watchful eyes of Leipus.

First he was asked to run at full stretch, then he bowled sharply at the nets and finally he bowled with a full run up in the middle.

The entire exercise lasted nearly an hour after which coach John Wright and captain Sourav Ganguly, in consultation with manager Dorrai Rajan, allowed Leipus to break the good news to the waiting media.

“He is in good shape. He did everything we asked him to do today. He has recovered from what I would call a spasm,” Leipus told reporters.

Leipus said his main concern was to take measures to prevent injuries in future and keep the bowler fit. His back muscles had to be strengthened so that he would not face problems. “Naturally, the lower back will affect the bowler. But I don’t think he need to change his action. Only the muscles have to be strengthened’’ he said.

Zaheer, who came along with Anil Kumble, VVS Laxman, L. Balaji and Parthiv Patel during the optional nets, was subjected to stretch-outs and made to run in different strides. He also bowled in the nets as Wright and Ganguly keenly watched him.

After a few deliberations among themselves, Leipus certified that the player was fit.

Sourav, who preferred to skip the nets, joined later. He saw the bowler in action.

Zaheer, who bowled nine overs despite the injury and conceded 39 runs, was keen on playing matches. He had played the lung opener against United Arab Emirates and conceded 42 runs in his eight overs.

He expressed relief on clearing the test and was confident that he would come out of the injury as it was not serious. However, he would be happy when he played the matches.

The player stressed that it had nothing to do with his previous injury.

Because of the injury, Zaheer was rested and Ashish Nehra was included and the Delhi bowler came with a good spell in the match against Bangladesh and claimed a wicket giving away just 26 runs in nine overs.

Zaheer had returned during the Pakistan Test series and was replaced by Ashish Nehra, who had injured himself during the one-day series. He had to miss matches in Australia due to niggling thigh injuries. After the Pakistan series, Zaheer had visited the MRF Foundation at Chennai and also was suggested by an Australian physiologist to make changes in his delivery style so that he could avoid injuries. The bowler was reportedly putting more weight on his leg to gain speed and not using his arms. The correction was suggested to avoid injuries. — PTI, UNI 

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Sachin’s approach was understandable
Javagal Srinath

The Indian team has every reason to feel better after their clinical approach against Bangladesh. After their defeat against Sri Lanka, I was not sure whether skipper Sourav Ganguly was more concerned about the rustiness of the top order batsmen or the penetration of the bowlers. But once Ganguly won the toss and opted to field, it was quite clear that he was more concerned about the bowling.

Sending Bangladesh to bat first was a conscious decision to get the bowling combination right before the all-important game against Pakistan on Sunday. The team think-tank decided to go even further to rest Anil Kumble and give both Harbhajan Singh and Ashish Nehra a good run.

Even if Zaheer Khan is declared fit by physio Andrew Liepus, the team cannot afford to take the risk of playing him in such crucial encounters.

Although, Bangladesh is considered minnows, the performance of Ashish and Harbhajan has furthermore given the captain a good measure about their form and fitness. With Anil coming back into the side, the game against Pakistan will be a toss up between the third seamer and a second spinner, much depending on the nature of the strip.

For some strange reasons, the extras have been playing havoc in this tournament. It’s not only the Indians, even the Pakistani bowlers are equally at fault.

The Indians gave away a staggering number of 37 extras out of which 23 were wides and four no balls. That happens to be the second highest score in the Bangladesh scorecard. Equally baffling were in the manner the Pakistan bowlers conceded 17 wides and four no balls.

The Indians will have to get better in this area. After all, in tight contests, discipline makes a major difference. Sachin’s cautious approach was quite understandable since it is always important for the batsman to spend time in the middle.

Still a keen student of the sport, Sachin plays the game according to the merit of cricket. He, perhaps, showed maximum respect to the weak Bangladesh attack to derive the best for his batting. The mind and the body coordination are so important in this game that even an ounce of arrogance and recklessness can bring down the greatest of batsmen.

It was a lesson for the youngsters to learn from the way Sachin went about building his innings. Ganguly followed the same pursuit to be among the runs.

Pakistan’s dismal show has once again exposed their brittle batting line up.

Their lack of experience is very much evident in recent games. The argument to induce fresh blood into the team does not necessarily always bring victories. The truth is that not much importance is given to the fact of blending youth with experience.

The problem is that too many youngsters in the side automatically lead to the delay in maturing at the international level.

Pakistan’s idea of having a foreign coach is a benign departure from conventional routine, which has failed more often than not. Bob Woolmer at the helm of affairs certainly has a far better grasp of things. He transformed the South African team into a good side and proved that one need not be a great international player to be a good coach. — PTI

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Natwar meets Shahrayar Khan

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Cricket Board chief Shahrayar Khan, a former Foreign Secretary, apparently postponed his visit to Sri Lanka for the Asia Cup to meet his “old friend”, External Affairs Minister K. Natwar Singh.

As the two sat over lunch after a warm hug at the Marriott Hotel this afternoon, Mr Natwar Singh and Mr Shahrayar Khan fondly remembered the days when they regularly interacted with each other on India-Pakistan relations as top officials of the Foreign Services of the two countries. — UNI

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Mani’s remarks silly: Azhar

Colombo, July 22
Lashing out at the International Cricket Council (ICC) chief Ehsan Mani’s remarks on his media accreditation for the Asia Cup tournament, former Indian captain Mohammad Azharuddin, facing life ban on charges of match-fixing, has said the issue was “silly” and the statement very immature.

When asked whether the ICC was up to some witch-hunting, Azharuddin, who is here as a media representative, told UNI: “it is difficult for me to react. It is too silly to say such things. I am here on a different job and interested in only doing my job and I am not worried what people are saying. Lot of people are going to say a lot of things.”

When reminded that Mr Mani heads cricket’s highest decision making body, he said: “The ICC President should have shown some restraint and should know what he is talking about. Nobody can stop anybody from earning.”. — UNI

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Police disputes Gavaskar’s claim

VADODARA: The city Police Commissioner said on Thursday that there was no record available to show that former cricketer Sunil Gavaskar had resigned from the board of Topline Shoes, a company in the centre of a misappropriation case, as he had claimed.

Talking to UNI, Police Commissioner S.K. Sinha said if at all Gavaskar had quit, the board of directors of the Vadodara-based company should have immediately passed a resolution and communicated it to the Registrar of Companies (ROC) as required under the Act.

“But the office of the ROC, Ahmedabad, the complainant in the case, claimed to have neither received Gavaskar’s resignation letter nor any communication to this effect from the company,” Mr Sinha said. — UNI

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Key, Strauss pound Windies attack

London, July 22
Robert Key and Andrew Strauss smashed hundreds as England piled up 391 for 2 on the first day of the first Test match against the West Indies at Lord’s today.
Key, inducted into the team in place of the injured Mark Butcher, remained unbeaten on 167 while Strauss was dismissed for 137. The two were involved in a partnership of 291, England’s best for the second wicket against the West Indies.

Earlier, West Indies captain Brian Lara, who won the toss, almost saw his decision to field first rewarded in the fourth over when Marcus Trescothick was deceived by a slower delivery from fast bowler Tino Best.

Scoreboard

England (1st Innings)

Trescothick c Sarwan b Best 16

Strauss c Jacobs b Banks 137

Key batting 167

Vaughan batting 36

Extras: (b-2, lb-15, w-12, nb-6) 35

Total: (for 2 wickets in 84.3 overs) 391

Fall of wickets: 1-29, 2-320.

Bowling: Collins 13.3-2-58-0; Best 16-1-75-1; Edwards 15-2-60-0; Bravo 14-2-42-0; Banks 17-2-111-1; Sarwan 9-0-28-0. — Agencies

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Soumyajit helps India win TT gold

New Delhi, July 22
Thirteen-year-old Soumyajit Sarkar made history, defeating Kim Gang Woog of Korea in the final of the Junior Asian Table Tennis Championship here today to help the country win its first-ever table tennis gold at the Asian level.

In a gruelling five-setter in the under-16 section, the Bengali lad, who is seen as a top future prospect for India, held on to his nerves to overcome his Korean opponent 9-11, 14-12, 7-11, 12-10, 12-10 at the NDMC stadium here today.

Soumyajit, who seemed to be overawed by the big stage initially, went down tamely in the first game allowing Kim to take it 11-9. But he overcame his nervousness and showed his class to win the second game 14-12. Kim, who was cheered throughout the game by a vociferous Korean contingent, came back into the match when he took the third set 11-7.

Playing in the deciding game like a man possessed, Soumyajit forced to a 5-0 lead against the Korean. However, with victory firmly in sight, Soumyajit faltered allowing his opponent to get back into the match. Kim rallied to level the scores 8-8. But Soumyajit prevailed in the end, taking the game and the match. — PTI

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Rathore shoots gold

New Delhi, July 22
Olympic medal hope Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore got into the winning mode ahead of the Athens games by clinching double trap gold at the Masters Cup shooting championship in Ceske Budjovice, Czech Republic.

Rathore shot an excellent 187 to win the gold, the National Rifle Association of India said in a press note here today. — PTI

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Athens-bound boxers walk out of national camp 
Our Sports Reporter

Patiala, July 22
The national boxing camp, which was being held at the NIS here in preparation for the Athens Olympics, came to an abrupt end this morning after all four Athens-bound pugilists decided to walk out of the camp, which was scheduled to run till August 6.

While Jitendra Kumar (81 kg) and Akhil Kumar (51 kg) left the NIS yesterday for their native places in Haryana, Diwakar Prasad (54 kg) and Vijender (64 kg) left for New Delhi this morning even as officials of the Indian Amateur Boxing Federation (IABF) claimed that the camp had been shifted to New Delhi.

Even though they stated that the camp had to be shifted due to “changed circumstances”, sources said the four boxers were finding it difficult to train due to lack of good sparring partners.

Jitendra Kumar, who represented the country in the Sydney Olympics, and Vijender, who at 18 is the youngest boxer to have been selected for the Olympics, were contemplating staging a walkout for the past many days.

However, they were restrained by Cuban coach B.I Fernandez, who was assisting chief coach G.S. Sandhu at the camp.

A senior coach disclosed that the IABF had selected suitable sparring partners for the four pugilists in their respective weight categories. However, since the rescheduled dates of the senior national boxing championship clashed with the dates of the national camp, most of the boxers acting as sparring partners decided to leave the NIS to prepare for the nationals to be held at Hisar in the first week of August.

Earlier, ace pugilist Akhil Kumar had refused to train under the coaches selected by the IABF. He was training under his own personal coach at Bhiwani and was persuaded to join the camp only when the Cuban coach arrived in mid-June.

All four boxers had even defied the IABF when they refused to tour Cuba on a training-cum-competition stint planned by the federation in mid-June.

The pugilists, at that time, had claimed that they were made to fight low-rung Cuban boxers, forcing the federation officials to cancel the tour.

Even as trouble was brewing for the past few weeks, neither IABF President Abhey Chautala nor its Secretary Rajesh Bhandari visited the NIS to take stock of the situation.

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Brazil overcome Uruguay 

Lima (Peru), July 22
Goalkeeper Julio Cesar blocked Vicente Sanchez’s shot as Brazil beat Uruguay 5-3 on penalties to reach the Copa America final against arch-rival Argentina.
The semifinal finished 1-1 at the end of regulation time after Marcelo Sosa scored on a header to put Uruguay ahead in the 22nd minute, and Adriano equalised less than a minute into the second half.

Argentina ousted defending champion Colombia 3-0 on Tuesday. The final is on Sunday. Uruguay will play Colombia for third place on Saturday.

Cesar dived to his left side to stop Sanchez’s penalty shot when Brazil were leading 4-3. Alex then slotted in the decider past Uruguay goalkeeper Sebastian Viera.

Luisao, Luis Fabiano, Adriano, Renato and Alex all scored for Brazil, while Dario Silva, Viera and Omar Pouso netted for Uruguay.

Uruguay came out strong in the first half, controlling the pace of the match and creating most of the scoring chances. Brazil were caught by surprise, failing to impose its game at National Stadium. Only in the second period were the five-time world champions able to match their South American rival.

Uruguay coach Jorge Fossati decided to replace regular starter Diego Forlan — one of the team’s offensive stars — with defensive midfielder Diego Perez, in a move that paid off early as Brazil had trouble overcoming the team’s setup at midfield. — AP

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Keshav Mishra set to win golf title
Our Sports Reporter

New Delhi, July 22
Keshav Mishra, who rewrote record books with a stunning nine-under par 63 yesterday, is all set to claim the Royal Challenge Indian Golf Tour’s inaugural event — the Northern India Amateur title. Inspired by his record-breaking performance, the 26-year-old played another scintillating round of three-under 69 to extend his lead to 10 strokes, after the third round, at the Army Golf Course here today.

Accompanying Keshav in the leader group for the final round tomorrow will be Ranjit Singh of Royal Kolkata Golf Club and three-time Sri Lankan Open winner Simarjeet Singh, with the former occupying the sole second position at one-under 215. Vikrant Chopra was tied for the third place at level-par 216, along with Simarjeet.

Former Indian cricket captain Kapil Dev returned a card of one-under 71 to share the fifth position with Vikramjit Singh. The duo have a 54-total of two-over 218.

Keshav, who had set the course on fire yesterday, began in the same vein in the third round, with a birdie on the opening hole. However, missing a small putt, he lost a stroke on the very next hole. He then fired consecutive birdies on the fourth and fifth. Keshav, playing steady golf, added two more birdies to his kitty on the 10th and 14th to stay well ahead of the field.

Ranjit Singh, who had scored a four-under par-68 in the second round, met with fluctuating fortunes.

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Chandigarh to have hockey academy
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 22
The Indian Women Hockey Federation (IWHF) today decided to start a hockey academy for junior girls (under-18) in Chandigarh after consulting the representatives of the women hockey associations of the northern region here today. Chandigarh Women's Hockey Association President, Mrs K Atma Ram, and secretary J P Sidhu agreed to the proposal.

Announcing this here today after the meeting, IWHF President Vidya Stokes also announced the introduction of the North Zone Six-a-Side Women's Hockey Tournament. The first edition will be conducted after October this year. The idea to introducing the six-a-side competitions is to sharpen the reflexes and skills of the players.

Teams from Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Pepsu, Chandigarh and Punjab will stake their claims for the top honours.

Mr J P Sidhu, who is also the Joint Director of Sports, Chandigarh Administration, has been appointed convener and coordinator by the IWHF.

Mrs Vidya Stokes is reported to have assured the Chandigarh Women's Hockey Association to provide funds for the smooth running of the academy. Mrs Stokes will approach the Sports Ministry to provide sufficient financial assistance for the new venture which is aiming at improving the women’s hockey standard by selecting budding players and providing them training on scientific lines.

This academy will not be linked with the Centre of Excellence for hockey girls being run by the Sports Authority of India in Sector 18.

Meanwhile, the selection procedure to choose 24 girls for the next coaching camp, concluded late this evening. Watched by the selectors, including IWHF Secretary-General Mrs Amtir Bose and Government nominee Madhu Yadav and chief coach Maharaj Krishan Kaushik and Narinder Saini, the Indian probables played matches. The Sports Authority of India coaching center girls played against the probables.

Thirtynine girls are attending the coaching camp which will last till July 31. The next camp at scheduled at Hyderabad from August 14. Hyderabad will also host the Junior Asian Cup Women’s Hockey Tournament for under-21 in October/November.

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Punjab boxing meet begins
Our Sports Reporter

Sangrur, July 22
The 51st Punjab state senior boxing championship began at the war heroes’ stadium here. Sangrur boxers dominated the proceedings on the opening day. In the light heavy weight category, Pawan Kumar of Sangrur disposed of J.M. Singh of Ropar. In the bantam weight category, another Sangrur boxer, Kulwinder Singh, had no difficulty in beating Sant Ram of Ludhiana. Earlier, the championship was inaugurated by Mr Husan Lal, Deputy Commissioner, Sangrur.

The results: Middleweight: Sharanpreet (Mansa) b Mandeep Singh (Ropar); light heavy weight: Pawan Kumar b J.M. Singh (Ropar); bantamweight: Suresh Kumar (Fatehgarh Sahib) b Rohit (Mansa); Mehmood b Gurinder; Kulwinder (Sangrur) b Sant Ram (Ludhiana); Amandeep Singh (PP) b Daljit Singh (Ropar); Ravinder Singh (Sangrur) b Yadvinder (Moga); Gaurav Pathak b Kuldeep Singh (Bathinda).

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ICF lead in Rly chess
Our Sports Reporter

Patiala, July 22
Integrated Coach Factory (ICF), Chennai, accumulated 15 points to top the points table on day four of the 17th All-India Inter-Railway Chess Championship played on the DMW premises here today.

Eastern Railway and Southern Railway garnered 14 points apiece to be placed joint second while fancied Northern Railway with 12.5 points shared the third spot with Western Railway.

In the individual events, which commenced this afternoon, Bansi Lal of hosts DMW lost his first-round match to favourite P.D.S. Gopinath of South-Central Railway in 35 moves. The hosts suffered another jolt when Jatinder Pal Singh went down fighting to Shankar Roy of Eastern Railway in 34 moves.

Other results: R. Balasubramanium (ICF, Chennai) b Brijesh Kumar (DLW, Varanasi); K. Ratnakaran (SR) b D.P. Chimpa (NWR); G.P. Singh (NR) beat D. Singh (NR); R.Preetham Singh (SR) b D.N. Malik (CLW); Dinesh Kher (NCR) beat V. Kamble (WR); Argyadip Dass (ER) b Dinesh Pathak (WCR).

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Jagtar to attend course in Budapest

Chandigarh, July 22
Women artistic gymnastic coach Jagtar Singh of Gurdaspur has been selected by the Gymnastic Federation of India for the international course in gymnastic to be held in Budapest from September 15 to December 8, according to Mr P S Virk, Secretary of the Punjab Gymnastic Association.

According to a communication received from Mr Balbir Singh, Coordinator, Olympic Solitary Programmes, of the IOA, Semmelweis University, Budapest, will organize courses in several sports disciplines. A state awardee, Jagtar Singh of Punjab Sports Department has trained several international women gymnasts. — TNS

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 BRIEFLY

Relay team fails to qualify
NEW DELHI:
The Indian athletics contingent received its first jolt three weeks before the Athens Olympics on Thursday as the men’s 4x400m relay team failed to qualify for the games.
India, who were ranked 15th earlier, slipped to 18th in the latest list released by the International Association of Athletics Federations. The top 16 national teams in the world in each of the four relay events (men’s and women’s 4x100m and 4x400m) made it to the Olympics. While four members of the relay team — K.J. Manojlal, Bhupinder Singh, Satbir Singh and Ramachandran — are training here, the fifth member of the squad, K.M. Binu, who has qualified in the men’s 400m, is in Ukraine. — PTI

5 held for betting
AHMEDABAD:
The police has arrested five persons, who were allegedly betting on the cricket matches of the Asia Cup being played at Sri Lanka, and seized from their possession various things, including cellphones, used for the crime.
On a specific information, the local crime branch of Sarkhej raided a hotel near the Sarkhej-Gandhinagar highway and held three persons who were betting on the Sri Lanka-Pakistan match on Wednesday. Following their interrogation, the police nabbed two other persons, including a medico, from Makarba village, near here. — PTI

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