'Failed' Player Guides Juniors To Hockey World Cup Win
- "You've asked a critical question", said the Indian junior hockey team's coach Harendra Singh, before tears rolled down his cheeks.This correspondent had asked him if he felt like an underachiever, both as player and coach. That was six weeks ago. At that moment, Harendra revealed a pledge he took in 1998, when he became a coach, after being dumped as a player from the national team. "I told myself that day that I may never be an Olympian, but I will nurture Olympians and world champions the country will be proud of. I've never seen the Indian tricolour fly high at a World Cup, I want to see it this time. I've invested 22 years of my life to see an Indian team lift the World Cup." Harendra's investment paid off in Lucknow on Sunday as the Harjeet Singh-led side edged out Belgium 2-1 to become the first host nation to win the junior World Cup hockey crown.
- The victory caps an emotional journey of a team which was carved out of raw talent and brought together in April 2014. The team has made plenty of sacrifices. Second goalkeeper Krishan Pathak didn't attend the funeral of his father who passed away a few mon ths ago, as the team was heading to England for a series. Seven members of the junior hockey team, including cap tain Harjeet, are sons of driv ers. They have battled the odds from a very young age, but have all been driven by the common goal of winning the Cup. Given the team's strengths, a podium finish was expected, but the quality of hockey and the amazing emotional strength they displayed on the field highlighted the fact that they were champion material.
- The victory by itself was no flash in the pan, the team having won the Junior Asia Cup last year and also the last build-up event - a four-nation tournament in Valencia, Spain. A lot has happened in Indian hockey over the past eight years. From a side which did not make it to Beijing Olympics in 2008, to the wooden spoon at London four years later, and the eighth-place finish in Rio this year for the senior side.The climb uphill has been slow, but purposeful. In fact, the golden show by the colts caps a great year for Indian hockey in which the senior team has also achieved significant progress and is now ranked No. 6 in the world. The juniors have ended a 15-year-old World Cup drought. One hopes it gets translated into brighter days for Indian hockey.
Malaysian Nur Damiyan Outlasts Diksha To Win Title
- NEW DELHI : Local school girl Diksha Dagar gave it all but the rub of the green and an experienced opponent from Malaysia stopped her from winning the Usha 100th All India Ladies Amateur title. The scores at the end of the 36-hole final show that the 21-year-old Nur Durriah Damian of Malaysia beat Diksha 7&5 on the 31st hole, but in reality the match was far closer, at least in the morning session and then again, the Indian did put up a fight but no avail. Also on Sunday, Ireland's Maria Dunne beat Tsai Wei Chia of Chinese Taipei 3&2 in the clash for the third place. The prizes were given away by sports minister Vijay Goel in the presence of Indian sports icon Saina Nehwal.
- Both the finalists, Nur and Diksha, were visibly tired by the closing stages of the match that was spread over two sessions and 36 holes. But for at least the first 15 holes of the morning session, both displayed excellent golf. Diksha, a student of Mount St. Mary's School in New Delhi, has been in great form and in the initial stages of the match, she gave the more experienced and fancied Nur a run for her money. Diksha, who has a hearing impairment and has been using a hearing aid since the age of six, has won four of the eighth tournaments she has played in India this season and also played four other events outside India.
Kolkata’s Cup Of Joy Brims Over With ATK’s 2nd ISL Win
- Kolkata : History repeated itself as two years down the line, Atletico de Kolkata beat Kerala Blasters a second time to lift the ISL trophy on Sunday night, albeit the penalty kicks. This, despite ATK's "goal machine", Hume, who scored four penalties this tournament, missed his spot kick. It was goalie Debjit Majumdar, the local darling, who emerged the new hero. For Kolkata, the win was a double victory as Sourav Ganguly's team edged out Sachin Tendulkar's franchise at Kochi, Kerala's home ground. As the last ATK penalty found its desired mark, Kolkata erupted with joy, crackers lighting up the winter sky and thousands of fans descending on the streets, dancing with ATK flags draped around and cheering for Hume & Co. That ATK got the better of their rivals by the virtue of team effort, rather than thanks to individual brilliance of Sameehg Doutie or Helder Postiga spoke volumes of their strategic move, many felt.
- Tathagata Mukherjee, who followed all the matches over two months, said the victory was well-deserved. He watched the match at Sourav Ganguly Fans Club at Behala Chowrasta along with more than 100 ATK supporters. "Unlike last time when we won, the tempo built gradually. I began to feel confident when we edged out Mumbai FC in the semi-final. Jose Molina used a different set of players to beat the Mumbai team. That was where the team showed their confidence," said Mukherjee, a private firm executive. Ratan Haldar, president of the club, took an extra step to arrange for a giant screen: a builder, he bought a plot for the screening. "I have created a stadium ambience and the carpet, designed like a football field. I wanted all 125 members to feel they were in Kochi," he said. There were others who watched the match at pubs, electronics goods shops and at local clubs, from Behala Chowrasta to Nagerbazar.
- Minister Aroop Biswas chose Suruchi Sangha where he caught the match, along with 50 club members. "Our coach is brave but I think Avinas Ruidas should have started the match instead of Jewel," he said as ATK went a goal down amid a collective sigh. "We will win this one," Biswas assured. A roar resonated through a south Kolkata pocket as over 200 ATK Fans' Fraternity celebrated ATK's goal just 10 minutes later, when Sereno's header beat the Kerala keeper. The Fraternity is ATK's only official fan club. A giant screen was put up at Badamtala Asar Sangha. "We knew we could do it," shouted Aritra Dutta, an electrical engineer. Every ATK move was cheered as shoppers stopped in their tracks to watch TV. "I don't feel like shopping.
- The match is too exciting to miss," said Nagerbazar's Satyen Roy as he entered an electronics goods shop. MSc student Riya Das travelled from Dum Dum to Rashbehari to watch the match with friends. A regular at all ATK matches at Rabindra Sarobar, her favourites were striker Hume and goalie Debjit. Forty fans at a Camac Street pub remained glued to their seats till ATK lifted the cup. "We never change or leave seats when ATK plays," said Akash De, a member.
Stephanie Del Valle From Puerto Rico Crowned Miss World 2016
- Stephanie Del Valle of Puerto Rico was crowned Miss World 2016 at the 66th edition of the Miss World pageant held on 18 December 2016 in MGM National Harbor, Oxon Hill, Maryland, United States. Stephanie Del Valle Diaz succeeds Miss World 2015 Mireia Lalaguna of Spain. At the same event, Yaritza Reyes from Dominican Republic was titled as the first runner up and Natasha Mannuela from Indonesia was adjudged as the second runner up.
- The grand finale of the most prestigious pageant was hosted by former Miss World 2013 Megan Young and actor Jason Cook. The show began with a grand opening number where the contestants vying for the Miss World crown entertained the audience with an enchanting dance number. Later, the winners before the audience, who took the stage as confirmed quarter finalists of the evening. Thereafter, the quarter finalists were trimmed down to Top 10 semi-finalists, who then gave a short interview to the host of the evening, Megan Young. Subsequently, the contestants were further narrowed down to Top 5 finalists.
- Stephanie Del Valle Diaz clinched the coveted crown after defeating 117 contestants from around the globe. This year the Miss World pageant introduced various new segments. The Top Model contest happened for the first time in the Miss World pageant it was won by Miss China. The Sports competition was won by Miss Cook Islands, Multimedia Award was won by Miss Philippines. Beauty with a Purpose was won by Miss Indonesia, and Talent Round was won by the gorgeous Miss Mongolia. The event went on with another amazing musical performance as all the delegates walked down the stage in gorgeous evening gowns and concluded.