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19Sep/20

Tennis News Nadal survives mini-crisis as Serena returns

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Tennis News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Paris: Rafael Nadal survived a mini-crisis to rack up his 80th win at Roland Garros on Tuesday as the 10-time champion defeated Italian lucky loser Simone Bolelli 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (11/9) to reach the second round.Nadal had to save four set points in the tiebreaker before wrapping a victory which preceded the widely-awaited return to Grand Slam tennis of 23-time major winner Serena Williams.World number one Nadal had been two sets up but 0-3 down in the third when rain caused the tie to be suspended late Monday. He quickly levelled at 3-3 today, saved four break points in the eighth game before saving four set points.Nadal eventually claimed the match on a third match point when Bolelli dumped a forehand into the net. The top seeded Nadal, bidding for an 11th title in Paris and his 17th major, next faces Argentina’s Guido Pella for a place in the last 32.”I really suffered today but it was a good test,” said Nadal who had been in danger of dropping his first set at Roland Garros since his 2015 quarter-final loss to Novak Djokovic.”It was very difficult. Simone is a very good player and he had lots of chances and was very aggressive. But I am happy to have won here on this court, the most important of my career.”Williams returns to Grand Slam tennis for the first time since the 2017 Australian Open where she won a 23rd major while also being two months pregnant.The 36-year-old’s return comes with the great American ranked at a lowly 451, a consequence of her lengthy absence from the tour after giving birth to her daughter in September.Williams has played just four matches in 2018, the last of which was a first-round exit to Naomi Osaka in Miami. Three of her Slam titles have come in Paris — in 2002, 2013 and 2015 — and longtime coach Patrick Mouratoglou has no doubt that Williams is capable of adding a fourth.”Can she do it? Serena can achieve anything — after being her coach for six years, I’m even more sure of that statement,” said the Frenchman.Williams starts her 16th Roland Garros against Czech world number 70 Kristyna Pliskova who has never won a match at the tournament in four visits. After getting rained off the schedule on Monday night, two-time champion Maria Sharapova also makes a comeback to the tournament after missing the 2016 and 2017 editions.Sharapova was refused a wild card last year by French Open organisers uncomfortable with being seen to hand out a free pass to a player who had just completed a 15-month doping ban. Five-time major winner Sharapova faces Dutch qualifier Richel Hogenkamp, ranked at 133, on Court Suzanne Lenglen. Third seed Marin Cilic reached the second round with a 6-3, 7-5, 7-6 (7/4) win over Australia’s James Duckworth.Wimbledon and Australian Open runner-up Cilic, 29, fired 47 winners and 13 aces past the 1,072th-ranked Duckworth who was playing his first match since the 2017 Australian Open. Since that time, the 26-year-old has been battling a foot injury which required surgery in January 2017.Canadian teenager Denis Shapovalov eased to a 7-5, 6-4, 6-2 victory over Australian John Millman in his first ever main-draw French Open match. The 19-year-old, who lost in Roland Garros qualifying last year but is now the 24th seed, will next take on German world number 70 Maximilian Marterer for a place in the last 32.”The last couple of weeks I’ve been playing unbelievable on this surface,” said Shapovalov.This year is the first time Shapovalov has been seeded at a major after his run to the Madrid Masters semi-finals earlier this month saw him become the youngest player to break into the world’s top 30 since 2005. Third seed and 2016 champion Garbine Muguruza defeated 2009 winner Svetlana Kuznetsova 7-6 (7/0), 6-2. Spain’s Muguruza next faces French wildcard Fiona Ferro, ranked 257, for a place in the last 32.With the headlines dominated by the returns of Williams and Sharapova, world number one Simona Halep will begin her latest bid to win a maiden Slam very much under the radar.The Romanian, who blew a set and 3-0 lead to lose the 2017 final to Jelena Ostapenko, faces Alison Riske, the 83rd-ranked American. last_img read more

19Sep/20

Other Sports Anand beats Ragger as Indian men crush Austria 3.5-0.5

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Batumi : World rapid champion Viswanathan Anand put it past Markus Ragger in a brilliant positional game as the Indian men’s team cruised to a 3.5-0.5 victory over Austria in the second round of the 43rd Chess Olympiad here. Back to the Olympiad after a gap of 12 years, Anand was precise in calculation and brilliant in judgement giving away nothing to Ragger who was all at sea defending a difficult position out of the opening on Tuesday evening.P Harikrishna, on the second board, benefitted from a late blunder by Valentin Dragnev after Vidit Gujrathi ensured an Indian lead with a fluent victory over Andreas Diermair. On the fourth board, B Adhiban was held to a draw by Peter Schreiner.Also Read | Asia Cup 2018: THIS player may become ‘tie king’ for Team IndiaWith their second 3.5-0.5 victory, the Indian men remain in joint lead on four points with 40 other teams and will next take on Canada.The Indian women scored a 4-0 victory defeating Venezuela on all four boards. On the top board, Grandmaster D Harika was stretched but not hassled by Sarai Carolina Sachez Castillo. On the second, Tania Sachdev played a clean game to outwit Amelia Hernandez Bonilla. Eesha Karavade was in her elements against Tairu Manuela Rovira Contreras and national champion Padmini Rout defeated Corals Patino Garcia to complete the whitewash.With 33 teams leading in this section, the Indian women will be next facing Serbia that might pose a better challenge.The second day in the biggest chess event was again not devoid of upsets and top seeded Russia became the first major casualty in the women’s section losing to Uzbekistan by a narrow 1.5-2.5 margin.The Uzbek women did well to hold the first three boards and then pulled the plug on the last board as higher rated Russian Natalija Pogonina was outdone by Nodira Nadirjanova.Anand played the Italian opening that has been finding a lot of favour in top level chess these days. Banking upon an idea played by Grandmaster S P Sethuraman in December last year, Anand found the going easy in a strategic battle when Ragger went wrong in his planning.Also Read | I was assaulted at 7; raped at 16, reveals actor Padma Lakshmi after 32 years of silenceWith his minor pieces better than his opponent’s, Anand made a foray on the queenside and despite swapping of pieces at regular intervals the advantage for him remained intact. Ragger resigned on the 47th move when he faced loss of a pawn.“He probably could have resisted better,” Anand said after the game citing some important moments where black might have equalized with accurate moves.Vidit Gujrathi played the Ruy Lopez and Diermair simply fell prey to a simple tactic resulting in serious material deficit while Harikrishna kept on pushing for more in an equal endgame and was duly rewarded.Among the Indian women, Harika replaced Humpy on the top board and outplayed her opponent in her trademark style.Eesha Karavade had to do little as her opponent made many positional errors right from the beginning while Padmini Rout also faced little resistance.After a rather topsy-turvy opening game, Tania Sachdev also found her form and squeezed out a fine victory thanks to some wily manoeuvres.Indian results: Open: India (4) beat Austria (2) 3.5-0.5 (Viswanathan Anand beat Markus Ragger; Valentin Dragnev lost to P. Hari Krishna; Vidit Gujarati beat Andreas Diermair; Peter Schreiner drew with B. Adhiban).Women: India (4) beat Venezuela (2) 4-0 (D. Harika beat Sarai Carolina Sachez Castillo; Amelia Hernandez Bonilla lost to Tania Sachdev; Eesha Karavade beat Tairu Manuela Rovira Contreras; Corals Patino Garcia lost to Padmini Rout). last_img read more

19Sep/20

Cricket News This Australian teenager does a Yuvraj Singh – Blasts six sixes in an over

first_imgSpeaking to the official Cricket Australia website, Davies said he had made up his mind to hit six sixes in the over after hitting the first two balls over the ropes. “I had it in the back of my head I wanted to give it a crack and it paid off at the end. I was trying to target (the area) from forward square to cow corner and I was just getting down on the back leg, almost before it was even bowled, and trying to slog sweep them over mid-wicket.”Read More |Happy Birthday Mithali Raj – an Indian legend at the crossroads New Delhi: Oliver Davies did a Yuvraj Singh in an Under-19 National Championship game in Australia between NSW Metro and Northern Territory at the Adelaide Oval. Davies, the NSW Metro captain, blasted six sixes in an over from offspinner Jack James and also notched up his double century. While his first hundred took a total of 74 balls, his next century came off a staggering 39 balls. Davies created plenty of records in the Under-19 National Championships and joined an elite list of batsmen who had achieved this glorious feat.  Apart from the six sixes in an over, Davies hit 17 sixes, the most ever in ODIs or List A cricket while he became only the second cricketer in the history of the Under-19 National Championship to hit a double century.In the 40th over of the NSW Metro innings, Davies decided to unleash as he blasted six sixes in the over bowled by James. All the sixes were slog swept over the ropes at deep midwicket. This was the most runs ever hit in an over of the Under-19 National Championships and he joined an elite list. Sir Garfield Sobers and Ravi Shastri are the batsmen to have hit six sixes in an over in First-Class cricket while Herschelle Gibbs achieved the feat in an ODI during the 2007 World Cup encounter between South Africa and the Netherlands in St.Kitts. Yuvraj Singh was the last batsman to achieve this feat when he hit six sixes in an over off Stuart Broad during the World T20 encounter between India and England in Durban 2007.Read More |This Australian cricketer can sing clear lyrics with mouth closedDavies’ blitz helped NSW Metro reach 406/4 and they achieved a 168-run win against Northern Territory. Davies became only the second player after Jason Krejza to hit a double century in this competition. Davies’ record of 17 sixes is also the most in limited-overs cricket, going past the record of 16 sixes hit by Rohit Sharma, AB de Villiers and Chris Gayle. Rohit hit 16 sixes in his knock of 209 against Australia in Bangalore 2013 while de Villiers smashed this tally when he hit the fastest ODI century off 31 balls in Johannesburg 2015. Gayle achieved this mark during his double century knock in the 2015 World Cup against Zimbabwe in Canberra center_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

19Sep/20

Other Sports PV Sindhu to resume quest for glory with Indonesia Masters participation

first_img Jakarta: Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu will resume her quest for glory in the new season, while Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth aim to continue their impressive run when they start their campaign at the Indonesia Masters, starting with qualifiers here. Seeded second Sindhu has been a cut above other Indians as she claimed silver medals at all the major events — Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and World Championship, before ending the year with the prestigious World Tour Final title, the first Indian to achieve the feat. After the engagements of Premier Badminton League (PBL), Sindhu decided to skip last week’s Malaysia Masters and she will begin her campaign against former Olympic gold medallist China’s Li Xuerui on Wednesday. The 23-year-old from Hyderabad is expected to clash with reigning Olympic champion Carolina Marin at the quarterfinals.   Saina, on the other hand, had an impressive start to the season, losing semifinal spot at Malaysia Masters, which was the first World Tour Super 500 tournament of the season. The London Olympic bronze medallist will take on a qualifier in the opening round and faces the prospect of meeting Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi, seeded fourth, at the quarters. Srikanth, who also entered the quarterfinals at Kuala Lumpur last week, plays his first match against Malaysia’s Liew Daren. The eighth seeded Indian will be joined by others such as Sameer Verma, B Sai Praneeth and HS Prannoy.Sameer had enjoyed a good run last season, winning titles at Swiss Open, Hyderabad Open and Syed Modi International. He also qualified for the World Tour Finals at the last moment and secured at a creditable semifinal finish. Praneeth also had a forgettable 2018 but dished out some good performances at the PBL and would look to translate the confidence in the international circuit. Prannoy, who had to deal with corns in both feet early in the season, was troubled by fitness issues including a gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) last season. Sindhu is the first Indian shuttler to win Badminton World Tour Finals title.Sindhu settled for silver in Commonwealth and Asian Games.Sindhu could face Carolina Marin in the quarterfinal. highlights With the 2020 Olympic qualification period starting from April, the Indian trio of Sameer, Praneeth and Prannoy will look to put the best foot forward.            Sameer will begin the season with a clash with the legendary Lin Dan, Praneeth faces Olympic champion Chen Long, while Prannoy meets Chinese Taipei’s Chou Tien Chen in the first round. In men’s doubles, it will be a clash between two Indian combination with Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty taking on Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy.               Women’s doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy will square off against Thailand’s eighth seed Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai, while mixed doubles pair of Satwiksairaj and Ashwini will pair up to clash with seventh seeded English husband-wife combination of Chris Adcock and Gabriella Adcock.         Another mixed doubles pair of Pranaav Jerry Chopra and Sikki will face fourth seed Indonesian combo of Tontowi Ahmad and Liliyana Natsir. For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

19Sep/20

Cricket News India suffers a massive Harmanpreet Kaur blow ahead of the England series

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. highlights New Delhi: India’s women team suffered a huge blow as their T20 skipper has been ruled out due to an ankle injury from the upcoming ODI series against England which is scheduled to start on February 22 at the iconic Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. The 20-year-old Harmanpreet Kaur will be replaced by the young sensation Harleen Deol. Interestingly, the two have played their domestic cricket for the same state – Punjab. The all-rounder Harleen, who is still to play for India, has been in fine touch and batted at number four spot for the Indian Board President’s XI against England in a warm-up game.According to the media release by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), Harmanpreet Kaur will now head back to the National Cricket Academy (NCA) for her rehabilitation. Harmanpreet Kaur ruled out due to an ankle injury.Harleen Deol will replace Harmanpreet for the ODIs. The first game will be played on February 22.  The ODI series forms part of the ICC Women’s Championship, and Harmanpreet’s loss will be keenly felt. She averages 34.52 with the bat in ODIs and played a key role in India’s march to the Women’s Cricket World Cup 2017 final, striking an unbeaten 171 against Australia in the semi-final.However, this remains to be seen if Harleen will start in the playing eleven for India or start at the bench. If Mithali Raj along with the team management gives her an opportunity, it will be interesting to see if she can replicate her Indian Board President’s XI performance. The two sides will play three ODIs, followed by as many T20Is.India Women’s squad for ODI series: Mithali Raj (Captain), Jhulan Goswami, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), R Kalpana (wicket-keeper), Mona Meshram, Ekta Bisht, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Shikha Pandey, Mansi Joshi, Punam Raut, Harleen Deol.last_img read more

19Sep/20

Cricket News Prithvi Shaw blasts reports of ‘indiscipline’ during Australia tour

first_imghighlights New Delhi: Prithvi Shaw had made a magnificent debut in Test cricket by smashing a hundred against West Indies in Rajkot. The Mumbai youngster was selected in the squad for the four-Test series in Australia. Shaw played the warm-up game against Cricket Australia XI and scored a solid fifty. However, while taking a catch near the boundary, Shaw landed awkwardly and suffered an ankle injury. He was carried off the field and was subsequently ruled out for the entire series. Following his recovery, Shaw played the Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy but reports started floating around that he was sent back from the Australia tour due to indiscipline. In an open media interaction conducted by the Delhi Capitals franchise before the IPL, Shaw blasted those rumours and did not get into details about rehabilitation.“These are rumours, so I will better let it go. No one told me anything about not working hard. I wanted to play but got injured. I thought I could play the third Test (in Melbourne) but then progress of recovery was slow. If you have had a look at my ankle, you would have known that it was really painful. Ankle wasn’t healing quickly and I had to return,” Shaw curtly replied. Prithvi Shaw scored a century on Test debut against West Indies.Prithvi Shaw captained India to the Under-19 World Cup title in New Zealand.Prithvi Shaw will feature for the Delhi Capitals in IPL 2019. For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Recently, the National Cricket Academy (NCA) has been in the news for the way how player injuries has been mismanaged. Wriddhiman Saha’s shoulder injury was one such instance and it became so problematic that the Indian keeper has had to undergo surgery and get into intensive rehabilitation. However, Shaw thinks otherwise.“I mean everything was perfect over there (NCA). I did a lot of sessions there. I was working to get fit before Mushtaq Ali T20 as I wanted to get used to the T20 format and then go to the IPL. That’s how I had planned my two months of rehab. Trainers and physio were very committed,” Shaw said.The Mumbai player, who rose to prominence after smashing a record 546 in a Harris Shield game for Rizvi, has had a great start to his India career and he credited coach Ravi Shastri and skipper Virat Kohli for making him comfortable. “I have learnt a lot. I mean I was a bit nervous when I first entered that (Indian) dressing room with players having 10 years of experience sitting in front of me. When the skipper and coach said that there are no seniors or juniors, you then kind of open up and irritate them with your questions,” Shaw said.The youngster, who helped India win the Under-19 World Cup when they defeated Australia in the final at Mount Maunganui in New Zealand in 2018, also added that he could bat anywhere in the order as required and stressed on the mindset required. “When I open the innings in limited overs, my mindset is different. Two men outside 30-yard circle, powerplay overs but when I am going down the order, it will obviously change. I watch a lot of experienced players. I watch if I go at No 5, what will I do there. It’s all about mindset, how you approach that situation,” Shaw said.last_img read more

19Sep/20

ICC World Cup ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Joe Root is the ‘glue’ that holds England together – Eoin Morgan

first_imgOn his part, Root said he did not expect to get so many overs under his belt but added that every game presented a new avenue for improvement. “It’s not about the number of runs you score and being the one that stands out in terms of individual accolades. It’s about building those substantial partnerships that win you games and collectively getting the job done. I feel like I’m playing all right. I don’t feel like I’m playing exceptionally well at the moment but I feel like I’m playing some good stuff and there’s still loads of things that I want to keep working on and keep improving. It was important we didn’t panic and kept it together. We managed to get across the line and did it really convincingly in the end so it’s a really good sign and will fill the dressing room with a lot of confidence in knowing that we don’t have to go about things in just one way to be successful,” Root said.On his bowling, Root said, “I didn’t really expect (to get so many overs). I got the opportunity and it was nice to pick up a few wickets. I probably burgled them rather than out-skilled them. I’m not the most skilful off-spinner, so I was just trying to be as unpredictable as possible.”England will now play Afghanistan in Manchester on June 18 while West Indies face a vital clash against Bangladesh in Taunton on June 17. highlights New Delhi: Joe Root single-handedly demolished West Indies in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 clash against West Indies in Southampton with a century and two wickets. His wicket of Shimron Hetmyer broke a solid stand with Nicholas Pooran and he also took the big wicket of Windies skipper Jason Holder as the West Indies were bowled out for a below-par score of 212. Root hurt West Indies with the bat by smashing a brilliant century to guide England to an eight-wicket win. Having also scored a century against Pakistan, Root has now amassed 279 runs in four matches, becoming the first England player to score two hundreds in a single edition of the World Cup since Kevin Pietersen 12 years ago. He has also become the first in history to compile three in total, as the hosts moved to the second position in the points table.Skipper Eoin Morgan, who walked off the field due to a back spasm, has lavished praise on Root by stating the Yorkshire batsman continued to impress every single time. “He is such an important player for us, he is the glue that holds everything together and probably a side of his batting that’s got better over the last two or three years that people haven’t seen a lot of is his expansive game. He never seems to be scoring at less than a run a ball. You look up and he’s going at more than a run a ball. It’s exceptional to see him come out and be in this form,” Morgan said. Joe Root is the first England player to hit three centuries in World Cups.Root is the first player since Kevin Pietersen to hit two tons in a single edition.England plays Afghanistan in their next league game. For all the Latest Sports News News, ICC World Cup News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

19Sep/20

ICC World Cup India vs New Zealand World Cup 2019 semi-final: Can Virat Kohli repeat 2008 magic vs Kane Williamson?

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, ICC World Cup News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. New Delhi: After 45 matches, the league stages of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 has ended. India, Australia, England and New Zealand are the four semi-finalists. India will take on New Zealand in Manchester on July 9 while Australia will once again square off against England on July 11 in Edgbaston. The road to the semi-final for both India and New Zealand has been a study of contrasting fortunes. New Zealand started the tournament with a bang with four wins out of five but suffered three consecutive defeats to lose momentum before the knockouts. India, on the other hand, has been clinical with both bat and ball and have suffered just one loss in the tournament which was to England.Heading into the semi-final, Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team are favourites to beat Kane Williamson’s New Zealand team. India’s batting and bowling have depth and form while the Kiwis have suffered in their batting which is overly reliant on Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor. This will be the first time India and New Zealand are squaring off in the semi-final of a 50-over World Cup and it will be a tough contest.However, the match will also see Kohli and Williamson square off in a knock-out for the first time since the two clashed in the 2008 Under-19 World Cup encounter in Malaysia. 11 years ago, Kohli and Williamson were big names in the junior circuit and it was a tense clash at the Kinrara Academy Oval in Kuala Lumpur. New Zealand elected to bat and they looked in good touch.After losing George Worker and Michael Guptill-Bunce cheaply, Williamson, in what would later become his trademark style, helped New Zealand stage a recovery. However, that was when Kohli decided to strike, not with the bat but with the ball. Kohli darted a quick ball wide outside off and Williamson was stumped for 37 by Shreevats Goswami. Kohli took his second wicket of Fraser Colson and had figures of 7-1-27-2. Corey Anderson blasted 70 off 76 balls which included six fours and four sixes and New Zealand ended on 205/8.During the India innings, rain intervened and the target for India was 191 in 43 overs. This time, it was Williamson’s turn to inflict damage on Kohli. Goswami and the Indian skipper had strung a solid 84-run stand, with Goswami hammering a fifty and Kohli looking good on 43. However, Kohli drove a full ball from Worker to short cover where Williamson took a brilliant catch to his right and New Zealand was in the hunt again. Tim Southee took four wickets but India held their nerve to win by three wickets and enter the final. Kohli’s men would script history by winning the 2008 Under-19 title by beating South Africa in a rain-affected match.11 years later, Kohli and Williamson are the modern-day greats of the game and are part of the fab-four in batting, along with Steve Smith and Joe Root. Both nations have a good record in the World Cup and they will be determined to enhance it in the semi-final. Will Williamson get the better of Kohli or will the Indian skipper inflict pain on the Kiwis as he did in 2008? The answer will be known on July 9. highlightscenter_img India’s clash vs New Zealand in Trent Bridge was abandoned due to rain.New Zealand has a 4-3 head-to-head record against India in World Cups.Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson were part of the Under-19 World Cup in 2008.last_img read more

19Sep/20

Other Sports Japan’s Fukushima eyes Tokyo 2020 event to give message of recovery

first_img Fukushima: The J-Village sports complex in Japan’s Fukushima was once a staging ground for battling the 2011 nuclear disaster, but next year it will host Olympic teams and the torch relay, sending a message of recovery. The Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay will begin at the centre, and Olympic softball and baseball matches will be played elsewhere in Fukushima, as part of efforts that officials and residents hope will help repair the reputation of a region now synonymous with the nuclear meltdown.    “The torch relay is a golden opportunity to send a message about our reconstruction to the world,” said Yusuke Takana, a 32-year-old official at the J-Village, from where the Olympic torch will set off on March 26, 2020. “The J-Village overcame the disaster and has been revived in its original form as a sports training centre,” Takana said.    Built-in 1997 as a fully-fledged sports training complex, the J-Village was radically transformed by the nuclear meltdown. Thousands of workers wearing radiation protection suits, gas masks and dosimeters were dispatched every day to the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant from the sports centre, located just on the edge of the initial 20-kilometre (12-mile) no-go zone.    Sports fields were used as a heliport, a decontamination centre and temporary houses were set up for plant workers, while armoured vehicles and firefighters were stationed at its parking lots. “It was so painful to see these buildings being put up on the ground where we trained in our youth,” said Ayako Masuda, a former goalkeeper with a women’s football club run by the nuclear plant operator Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO).    The J-Village’s pitch was her team’s home ground, said the 44-year-old, who stayed with TEPCO as an employee after retiring from football.    ‘Difficult tasks’ remain     The complex clean-up at the nuclear plant continues, but the J-Village’s role as a staging centre diminished over time and it reopened fully as a sports centre in April. On a Friday afternoon, schoolboys were kicking and heading a ball on the turf as part of a summer football camp, cheered from the sidelines by coaches and parents.    “The pitch is beautiful. It’s well worth playing here,” said Ryuki Asai, a 12-year-old boy in his team’s soccer uniform. There are few signs of the role the J-Village once played, though a digital display showing radiation levels still operates outside the front gate.    It registered 0.111 microsieverts per hour at the gate — barely different from 0.110 in central Japan’s Gifu. Emiko Takahashi was visiting with her son from Tokyo and had checked the radiation levels posted on the J-Village website. “Coming here with my son is a way of supporting Fukushima’s reconstruction,” Takahashi said.    The complex will be used for training by Japan’s men’s and women’s national football teams ahead of the Olympics, and Argentina’s rugby team plans to train there before the World Cup that begins in Japan on September 20.    Fukushima Governor Masao Uchibori called the facility a symbol of reconstruction while acknowledging that “difficult tasks” remained.    ‘I want to come back’More than 160,000 people were evacuated after the nuclear meltdown caused when a 9.0-magnitude earthquake triggered a massive tsunami on March 11, 2011. Some areas affected by the meltdown remain off-limits, and some 43,000 residents have yet to return home. Levels of radiation in areas directly around the plant remain extremely high, hampering a decommissioning process that is expected to take decades.    And while radiation levels are now largely normal outside the restricted zone, Fukushima is still fighting its association with the meltdown, particularly fears over the safety of local food. “The reputation damage remains deeply rooted,” said Shunji Miura, an official from Fukushima prefecture.    As part efforts to rehabilitate its reputation, Fukushima will host Olympic matches in softball and baseball — Japan’s most popular sport. On Saturday, children from 13 countries gathered at the Azuma Sports Park that will host the Olympic matches for a baseball tournament.    “I hope that when these children go back home they will tell people that Fukushima was good,” said Sadaharu Oh, Japan’s retired home-run king, who helped organise the tournament. “And I hope that those who hear that from them will change their image” of Fukushima, Oh added.    Yi-Yu Tseng, a 10-year-old pitcher from Taiwan, acknowledged the history of the nuclear disaster made the prospect of visiting “a little bit scary”. “But I’m feeling less scared now,” he said. “I want to come back to Fukushima.” For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. highlightscenter_img Japan was struck by a 9.0 magnitude earthquake in 2011.The Tsunami killed about 10,000 people.Fukushima’s nuclear plant suffered a meltdown after the tsunami hit the facility.last_img read more

19Sep/20

Other Sports PV Sindhu, B Sai Praneeth Crash Out As India Challenge Ends In Denmark Open Badminton

first_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. Odense: India’s campaign at the USD 775,000 Denmark Open came to a disappointing end with the trioka of PV Sindhu, B Sai Praneeth and Sameer Verma — all-exiting after suffering straight-game losses, in Odense on Thursday. World Champion Sindhu, seeded fifth, yet again struggled to buck the trend of recent early exits as she was knocked out after she lost 14-21 17-21 to Korea’s An Se Young in a 40-minute second-round women’s singles clash at the BWF World Tour Super 750 event. This was Sindhu’s third successive early exit from a tournament since claiming the World Championship at Basel, Switzerland in August.   The 24-year-old Indian had lost in the second and first round at the China Open and Korea Open respectively in the last two events. It turned out to be a dismal day for Indian shuttlers in general  as B Sai Praneeth, Sameer Verma, and men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also went down in straight games in their second rounds. While Praneeth was outclassed by two-time World Champion Kento Momota of Japan 6-21 14-21 in yet another dominating show, Sameer lost 12-21 10-21 to Olympic champion Chen Long of China.  Thailand Open champions Satwik and Chirag also suffered a 16-21 15-21 defeat against sixth seed Chinese combination of Han Cheng Kai and Zhou Hao Dong in men’s doubles. Later in the day, Pranaav Chopra and N Sikki Reddy put up a gallant fight before going down 24-26 21-13 11-21 to fourth seeded Malaysian pair of Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying in the mixed doubles competition.In the 40-minute women’s singles duel, Korea’s Se Young showed great control and precision as she didn’t allow Sindhu to execute her game plan.  The Korean raced to a 6-1 lead early on but Sindhu narrowed it down to 7-8 at one stage, raising expectations of a change of script. But Se Young was relentless as she zoomed to a 14-7 advantage and then slowly moved ahead to pocket the opening game. In the second game, Sindhu held a 8-4 lead at one stage but Se Young surpassed her with a 9-8 advantage.Also Read | PV Sindhu, B Sai Praneeth Crash Out Of Korea Open Badminton TournamentSindhu again moved ahead before the Korean reeled off six straight points from 14-16 to grab four match points and converted it on her second attempt to seal her place in the quarters. last_img read more