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Saina Nehwal's triumph at Malaysia Masters Final

Days after recovering from knee injury during Rio Olympics, Saina Nehwal is back with a bang as this Indian badminton ace thrashes Pornpawee Chochuwong of Thailand by 22-20, 22-20, thereby claiming the Malaysia Masters Grand title.

Quashing the air about her ability to win titles, the world No 10 Nehwal clinched her first Masters within five months since knee injury. Nehwal had to undergo surgery after an early exit from the Rio Olympics where her fellow citizen PV Sindhu created history by claiming the first silver medal for Indian badminton.

Silencing the critiques, Saina returned to action within a quarter of the surgery setback. Once the absolute queen of Indian badminton, she faced early exists and missed he qualification mark for Dubai World Superseries Finals. Also, she lost to Sindhu in the Premier Badminton League. However, Malaysia Masters Grand title has been her winning start to 2017.

The hyderabadi had to battle to claim the first game. With her opponent just five points away from winning the first game, Saina let out a series of cross court smashes to come back into the game. After leveling in the game for the first time at 19-19, she went on to nail it. 

ODI Series against England: BCCI Announces India U-19 Team

The team for Under 19 One-day series has been announced by The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The upcoming Under 19 One-day series against England is going to be held in India in the months of January-February at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. It will start from 30 January and end on 8 February.

The team for four-day matches is yet to be announced.

Ranji Trophy: Gujarat lions beat 41-time winner Mumbai at Indore Stadium

In one of the most beautiful and memorable Ranji matches ever, Gujarat has beaten up its opponent and 41-times winner Mumbai at the finals held at Holkar Stadium, Indore. While the credit goes to selfless performance by Parthiv Patel, no one can rule out the contribution of coach Vijay Patel who has lost a Ranji trophy to the same opponent, at the same Stadium 14 winters ago. And now was the time when his boys were taking home that finely crafted piece of silverware.

This was perhaps the most beautiful backdrop of Gujarat’s historic triumph. Gujarat’s Skipper Parthiv Patel scored 143, scoring a century under tremendous pressure and being on the crease for most of the time. Gujarat lions chased the target of 313 at a loss of 5 wickets while beating their rivals, or the arch rivals, by five wickets on Day 5 of the final.

This is the first Ranji Trophy title claimed by Gujarat lions.41 times champions, Mumbai managed 412 in their second innings, credits to half centuries by Abhishek Nayar and skipper Aditya Tare. Post the tea session, Rujul Bhatt and Parthiv Patel started dealing in boundaries when they were just 13 runs short from victory.

It was when Gujarat needed 11 runs to win, Patel was knocked out and Chirag Gandhi took over. What followed was back to back boundaries by Bhatt and Gandhi that made Gujarat lift its maiden Ranji trophy. 

PV Sindhu beats Saina in Badminton League semifinal at Delhi

In a nail biting competition, PV Sindhu has overpowered Saina Nehwal as Chennai Smashers beat Awadhe Warriors at the second semifinal of Premier Badminton League in New Delhi on Friday. The semifinal held at the Siri Fort Auditorium, witnessed its most spectatcular match in form of the Sindhu-Nehwal trump match.

The Olympic silver medallist made a great start gaining a lead of two-point lead, but Nehwal, in no mood to let things go off easily, made a neck-to-neck race, before Sindhu scored four consecutive points to claim the first game.

Nehwal maintained her stance in the match given her body smashes that made her stay on Sindhu’s heels at 6-5.

In the second game, Saina tried her best to pave her way in by playing deep. But seems as if Sindhu was aware of what was coming up and held her nerve to win crucial points. At 6-5 in favour of Sindhu, the best point of the game was played. Both relentlessly tested each other in every aspect of their opponent’s game.

What seemed like a never-ending one, the 48-shot rally was finally put to an end with a cross court shot by Sindhu. The last time when both faced each other was at the Syed Modi International Grand Prix (2013) when Saina had an Olympic bronze and Sindhu was a rookie who could be easily intimidated.

Chennai finally got hold of the semi-final when Sindhu beat Nehwal by 11-7, 11-8. The finals will be held between Chennai Smashers and Mumbai Rockets. In the second semi-final Mumbai Rockets beat Hyderabad Hunters by 3-1. 

Cricket Club of India Felicitates MS Dhoni

The Cricket Club of India felicitated MS Dhoni at Mumbai’s Brabourne Stadiumfor his contribution to Indian cricket. Dhoni stepped down as captain of the Indian limited overs, but is leading India A against England in the first, out of two matches which are to be played before the beginning of the three-match ODI series.

Ranji Trophy: Mumbai Makes it to their 46th Final

As per reports, Mumbai has made it to the 2016-17 Ranji Trophy season as defending champions and bagged the title for the 41st time. Aditya Tare's team gave a tough time to Group A with 30 points and became the first team to qualify for the final eight.

Mumbai left behind Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu, and will be meeting Gujarat in the summit. In a total of 83 years of Ranji Trophy, this is Mumbai's 46th final in the sport.

India v England: 'Captain' Dhoni's last roar with Yuvi & Nehra by his side

After manfully playing the role of Indian cricket team captain for close to a decade, Mahendra Singh Dhoni will be leading India for one last time in the first warm-up game against England on Monday.

The other person to look out for is the comeback man Yuvraj Singh, who is expected to play a crucial role in Virat Kohli's scheme of things for the Champions Trophy.

The match will also witness comeback of left-arm speedster Ashish Nehra from a surgery. Yuvi, who has been out of action for more than month and half given his marriage, will also get some crucial practice.

The match will be equally important for Shikhar Dhawan, who had been healing from thumb fracture. But of course, the entire nation will be looking up to Captain Cool, as Dhoni is often called.

All in all, this warm up match will be an occasion to remember when Captain Cool will step in the pitch with some of the senior team boys against England team that has been better in shorter formats over the years.

Sania Mirza Wins Brisbane Doubles Title

As per reports, Sania Mirza made it at Brisbane Doubles by winning the first title of the season, which she combined with American Bethanie Mattek-Sands. However, she could not get the World No.1 rank. The position was taken by Bethanie.

Kohli the New ODI and T20I Captain

After MS Dhoni relinquished the limited-over captaincy, <a href=”http://www.mapsofindia.com/who-is-who/sports/virat-kohli.html”>Virat Kohli</a> has been selected as the new ODI and T20I captain, and became the skipper in all three formats of the game. Many other cricketers were also named for the one-day and Twety20 squad.

SC Orders to Remove Anurag Thakur

BCCI President Anurag Thakur has been ordered to be removed from his post for not complying with court orders. Ajay Shirke has been remove from his post of BCCI Secretary by the apex court. This was not enough as the court also issued show cause notices to both Thakur and Shirke asking the reason for contempt and perjury proceedings not being initiated against them.

The order came after the third report of Lodha Committee which was submitted on 14 November where disqualification of office-bearers of the BCCI and state associations was asked. Supreme Court is reportedly going to replace the top brass cricket board.

Sportsperson writes Suicide Note addressing PM Modi highlighting inability to bear Expenses

20-year-old Pooja, a national-level handball player, allegedly committed suicide yesterday after the second year student was denied free hostel facility by Khalsa College in Patiala. She left a suicide note, where she addressed Prime Minister Narendra Modi and asked him to ensure that every underprivileged girl should get free educational facility. Khalsa College management said that Pooja was denied free hostel facility (but was given free admission) because of her poor performance. In the 4-page suicide note, she said that her father, a vegetable vendor, can’t afford her daily commutation cost of Rs. 120 everyday, amounting to Rs. 3,720 per month.

PV Sindhu helps India bag First Ever Women's Olympic Silver

21 year old Pusarla Venkata Sindhu won a billion Indian hearts even as she settled for silver in the women’s singles badminton final in the Rio Olympic 2016. She went down to World No. 1 Carolina Marin (from Spain) 21-19, 12-21, 15-21 even after winning the first set. PV Sindhu became the first woman silver medallist from India to win silver at a quadrennial event. It is the second medal for India after 23 year old Sakshi Malik won bronze medal in the women's 58-kg wrestling category. Meanwhile, PV Sindhu’s mentor Pullela Gopichand said that her success is a proud moment for him.

Indian "Produnova" Dipa Karmakar misses Olympic Bronze by a Whisker

23 year old Dipa Karmakar, the first Indian gymnast to reach the finals in Olympics, missed the bronze medal by a whisker as her average score (15.066) fell 0.15 points short of Switzerland’s Giulia Steingruber (15.216), the bronze medal winner in the event. Gold and silver medals were won by USA’s Simone Biles (15.966) and Russia’s Maria Paseka (15.253) respectively. India’s “Produnova” girl was sporting enough despite the loss and vouched for focusing on “Tokyo 2020 Olympics”. She wished India on 70th Independence day and thanked everyone who supported her.

Lalita Babar qualifies for women's 3,000 metre Steeplechase finals

India’s long-distance runner Lalita Babar qualified for the finals of women's 3,000 metre Steeplechase after finishing 4th in the qualifying heat. Lalita will participate in the final on August 15. She is the only track and field sportsperson from India to reach the finals in 32 years, since PT Usha in 1984. Her winning performance was a puff of fresh air even as other Indian athletes made a poor show. Even mixed tennis doubles partners Sania Mirza and Bopanna lost to the US pair Venus Williams and Rajeev Ram 6-2, 2-6, 3-10 in the semi final match. India is waiting with abated breadth to see gymnast Dipa Karmakar win the first medal for India with her match winning Produniva vault.

Indian Athletes shine bright after Gloomy start of Rio Olympics

After a dull start in Rio Olympics 2016, Indian athletes shone bright as tennis and boxing advances bring India back from the gloom. Indian boxer in the 75 kg category, Vikas Krishan, cruised in to the quarter finals as he defeated Sipal Onder of Turkey. In tennis mixed doubles, the Indian pair of Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna defeated Andy Murray and Heather Watson of Britain in straight sets (6-4 6-4) in 67 minutes to reach the semi finals.

Hockey Team and Bhokanal lifts India's Spirit on disappointing Day 1 at Rio Olympics

Indian athletes started its campaign in Rio Olympics 2016 disappointingly as 9 first-round exits took place on Day 1. Both men’s and women’s Tennis doubles partners Paes-Bopanna and Sania-Prarthana lost in the very first round. The entire table tennis contingent lost too. However, the spirit of Indian athletes was lifted by the Indian men’s hockey team’s win over Ireland. Indian rower Dattu Baban Bhokanal also brought some cheers as he entered quarter-finals of the men’s single scull event.

Bindra-led Largest Indian Contingent exudes Confidence at Rio Olympics Opening

118 Indian athletes (largest ever contingent of Indian athletes in any Olympic games) today exuded confidence during the spectacular opening event of Rio Olympics 2016. The Indian contingent was led by Olympic gold medallist and ace Indian shooter Abhinav Bindra. The contingent includes the veteran tennis sensation Leander Paes, who is going to participate in a record 7th Olympics. Indian contestants to participate during today’s games will be Ayonika Paul and Apurvi Chandela (Women's 10m air rifle), Dattu Baban Bhokanal (Men's single sculls - Heats), Men’s hockey team, Leander Paes and Rohan Bopanna (Men's Tennis doubles), Sania Mirza and Prarthana Thombare (Women's Tennis doubles), and Manika Batra (women's Table Tennis singles).

PM Modi flags off "Run for Rio" and bats for Desi Food during Rio Olympics

While flagging off a promotional event “Run for Rio” in New Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made strong pitch for promoting sports in India and went on to question the raison d'être of paying higher daily allowance to the bureaucrats than the sportspersons, who indeed bring “glory to the country”. PM Modi said that this disparity of pay have been done away with. He went on to say that Indian team is being sent to Rio in advance so that they can aclimitize in the foreign environment. PM Modi informed that Indian contingent will get Indian food during their stay in Rio.

Neeraj becomes First Indian Athlete to Set World Record

18 year old Neeraj Chopra, India’s javelin-thrower hailing from Haryana’s Panipat district, created history by throwing javelin at a record distance of 86.48 m, breaking previous record of 84.69 m held by Latvia’s Zigismunds Sirmais. He achieved the feat during his third attempt at the Under-20 IAAF World Championships in Poland’s Bydgoszcz. After winning gold, Neeraj said that he never expected to throw at such a long distance. With this feat, Neeraj Chopra became the first Indian ever to create a world record in athletics.

PM Modi says Sports can become Instrument for National Integration

While digitally launching country’s largest multi-city school and college sports competition, Reliance Foundation Youth Sports initiative, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called for the need of promoting sports in India. He also highlighted how sports can help in national integration. PM Modi said that “sports should be an integral part of our everyday life” and not merely a way “for physical well-being”. He said that “sports are important for overall development of an individual”. PM also underscored that sports help persons become fighter and help them learn “to deal with defeats”.