Sindhu In Semis, Jayaram Loses
- Olympic silver-medallist P V Sindhu advanced to the semifinals of the China Open after defeating local favourite He Bingjiao in straight games at the USD 700,000 Super Series Premier event, here today. Seventh seed Sindhu notched up a 22-20, 21-10 win over Bingjiao, who has won four titles -- Bitburger Open, French Open, Japan Open and Swiss Open -- this season in women's singles competition. The 21-year-old from Hyderabad will take on the winner of the match between Japan's Akane Yamaguchi and sixth seed Sung Ji Hyun, seeded sixth. In men singles, Ajay Jayaram could not get across the reigning Olympic champion, two-time World champion and All England champion Chen Long of China, suffering a 15-21 14-21 defeat in a 40-minute clash.
- Sindhu lagged behind from the start as Bingjiao took a 5-1 lead early on and despite the Indian breathing down her neck with leads of 7-6, 12-11, 14-12, the Chinese managed to wrest control leading 17-14. Sindhu kept fighting and moved neck and neck from 17-17 to 20-20, before marching ahead. She closed the 21-minute opening game when Bingjiao sent the shuttle wide. The left-handed Chinese opened a 2-0 lead in the second game but Sindhu levelled, riding on the errors of Bingjiao. The Indian mixed her strokes well, using tosses and lifts to push her rival at the corners and came up with some sharp smashes and half smashes to lead 7-3.
- Sindhu was lucky to get a point at 10-4 when the chair umpire overruled a challenge by the Chinese despite the screen showing the shuttle kissing the line. Bingjiao then hit long again as the Indian entered the break at 11-5. A tired looking Bingjiao faltered with her length and accuracy of strokes to help Sindhu continue her march ahead to 14-5. Bingjiao grabbed three points before Sindhu broke the rhythm when the Chinese's back hand slice went to net. A superb back hand smash helped Bingjiao take another point. But the Chinese continued to stumble on errors which included a wide shot that took Sindhu to 17-9, a long serve and a shot going long. Sindhu sealed the second game in 17 minutes after Bingjiao once again hit long. (PTI)
Boxing Gets Back To Business With Women's Nationals
- A fresh start is what they would aspire for when more than 250 boxers from 31 teams vie for top honours in the National Women's Boxing Championship starting here tomorrow, ending the competition drought which stunted the sport's growth in the last four years. This is the first major event being conducted by the recently-formed Boxing Federation of India (BFI) and is expected to give the much-needed sense of normalcy to a sport, which was ravaged by four years of administrative wranglings.
- However, in what can be considered a slight dampener, established names such as Olympic bronze-medallist and five-time world champion M C Mary Kom, Asian Games bronze-medallist L. Sarita Devi and Commonwealth Games bronze-medallist Pinki Jangra have pulled out for a variety of reasons. While Sarita and Pinki have been ruled out due to injury, Mary Kom, who is also a Rajya Sabha MP now, has cited other commitments. But both Mary and Sarita will make the trip to the city to express their support to the event. "I really wanted to be there but then I picked up a wrist injury and was advised by doctors not to take a chance. But I am quite excited about the Championships, it is a fresh beginning for us and hopefully, things will only get better," said Pinki.
- The event indeed is a fresh lease of professional life for the 271 boxers who have assembled here, given that their future seemed in limbo not so long back owing to the administrative turmoil in Indian boxing. A new federation has taken charge now after elections in September and the boxers are hopeful that the stability will last. Long-serving national women's coach Anoop Kumar said he is keeping his fingers crossed. "I have come here with a lot of expectations and hope. An entire batch of boxers has suffered because of the absence of a national federation in the last four years but hopefully that dark phase is behind us now. I am excited about watching new talent at the Championships, there is no denying it's a good start," he told PTI. "The lack of competition hurt the boxers badly and this Championships is the first step towards making up for the lost time," he added. This is not to say that the field comprises entirely of greenhorns. PTI
Sports Minister Congratulates New FIH Chief Batra Singles
- Sports Minister Vijay Goel has congratulated Hockey India chief Narinder Batra on being elected as the first non-European President of the International Hockey Federation (FIH) on last Saturday. Goel expressed hope that the game of hockey will spread world wide under Batra"s leadership.
- "I hope that under Shri Batra number of hockey playing nations in the world will increase and hockey will regain place of prominence in the international arena," Goel said in a message. Batra on Saturday became the first non-European President of the FIH after he was elected to the top post by an overwhelming margin during the 45th FIH Congress in Dubai. Batra, who is the president of Hockey India, defeated David Balbirnie of Ireland and Australia's Ken Read.
Mechanisms Play Vital Role In Aerospace Technology : ISRO Chief
- ISRO Chairman A S Kiran Kumar today said mechanisms play a vital role in aerospace technology and asked the scientific community to concentrate more on the modelling and analysis of the complex systems for better prediction of flight performance. "A large number of mechanisms are being operated in different stages of launch vehicle and each of them need to work satisfactorily for its successful performance," he said.
- He was speaking after inaugurating the Aerospace and Related Mechanisms Seminar (ARMS 2016), organized by Indian National Society for Aerospace & Related Mechanisms (INSARM), through video conference here. "19 November 2016, mechanisms play a very important role in our activities," he said. PTI