Triumphant Indian women's hockey team returns after winning FIH finals

Agencies
June 25, 2019

Jun 25: A triumphant Indian women's hockey team landed in New Delhi on Tuesday after winning the FIH Women's Series Finals in Japan against the host country.

"Our experience there was really good, we went there with a target and achieved it which has made us really happy. We achieved our goal of winning there, winning against Japan in the finals was good but ranks really don't matter today," team goalkeeper Savita Punia told ANI here.

Coach Sjoerd Marijne also expressed joy at the team's win and said: "We played really well. We controlled the match really well. I am pretty happy with our defending in the finals and I can say we kept on improving with every match."

The team had defeated the tournament hosts Japan 3-1 at the Hiroshima Hockey Stadium on Sunday.

Skipper Rani Rampal, the best player of the tournament, netted a goal in the third minute but India conceded an equalizer in the 11th minute as Japan's Kanon Mori scored. However, a brace from Gurjit Kaur, the top scorer of the tournament, scored in the 45th and 60th minutes took India to an emphatic victory.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday lauded the stupendous victory of Indian women's hockey team in the FIH Series Finals.

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Agencies
January 15,2021

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Brisbane, Jan 15: India fast bowler Mohammed Siraj was targetted for abuse by a section of the crowd on the opening day of the fourth Test against Australia, a local newspaper reported, claiming that he was called a "grub" by some spectators.

The reported incident happened a few days after Siraj was racially abused by spectators at the Sydney Cricket Ground on the third and fourth day of the drawn third Test. That had led to an expulsion of six people from the stands and an unreserved apology from Cricket Australia to the visiting team.

On Friday, a report in the 'Sydney Morning Herald' quoted a spectator as saying that a section of the crowd at the Gabba targetted Siraj.

"The guys behind me have been calling - shouting - both Washington and Siraj grubs," a spectator named Kate was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

"It started targeted at Siraj and it was a chant similar to the SCG one (in which fans sung to the tune of Que Sera, Sera but substituted the lyrics with Que Shiraz, Shiraz).

"But this time it was Siraj. I suspect it's not a coincidence that it's Siraj being targeted post the SCG stuff."

According to the newspaper, at one point, a man in the crowd was heard yelling, "Siraj, give us a wave, give us a wave, give us a wave. Siraj, you bloody grub."

Play was halted during the Sydney Test for about 10 minutes after Siraj complained of racial abuse from a section of the crowd. The BCCI had also lodged a complaint with the match referee against the abuse.

CA had promised strongest possible action against the offenders, which included the possibility of them being banned for life from the SCG.

The ICC had condemned the incidents of Indian players being subjected to racial abuse by the spectators and had sought an action-taken report from CA.

Former cricketers and current players like India captain Virat Kohli, Australia skipper Tim Paine and coach Justin Langer had also condemned the incidents at the SCG.

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Agencies
January 17,2021

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Brisbane, Jan 17: Fighting back through debutant Washington Sundar and Shardul Thakur, India reached 253 for six at tea on the third day of the series-deciding fourth Test against Australia here on Sunday.

Washington (38) and Thakur (33) have added 67 runs for the unbeaten seventh wicket after India lost four wickets.

Resuming at 62 for two, skipper Ajinkya Rahane (37) was watchful till he went for a flashy drive off Mitchell Starc and ended up getting caught in slips. Before his dismissal, Cheteshwar Pujara (25) fell to a peach of delivery off Josh Hazlewood in the opening session.

In the second session, India lost Mayank Agarwal (38) and young Rishabh Pant (23) and innings seemed to be falling apart but Washington and Thakur resisted the Australian attack with aplomb.

Brief Scores:

Australia 1st innings: 369 all out 115.2 overs (M Labuschagne 108; T Paine 50, M Wade 45; T Natarajan 3/78, S Thakur 3/94, W Sundar 3/89).

India 1st innings: 253 for 6 in 87 overs. (R Sharma 44, M Agarwal 38, A Rahane 37; J Hazlewood 3/43, P Cummins 1/79).

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Agencies
January 8,2021

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Sydney, Jan 8: Australia's Steve Smith on Friday became the batsman to score the maximum number of hundreds against India in Test cricket.

Smith achieved the feat on the second day of the ongoing third Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at the Sydney Cricket Ground. He played a brilliant knock of 131 before getting run out.

The right-handed batsman has scored eight hundreds in just 25 innings against India that he has played so far.

Gary Sobers (30 innings), Vivian Richards (41 innings) and Ricky Ponting (51 innings) also had scored eight centuries against India.

Smith, currently ranked third in ICC Test rankings, has now scored 27 Test hundreds, equalling Virat Kohli, Graeme Smith and Allan Border.

With his Friday's inning, Smith also ended Australia's near four-year drought of centuries against India. The 31-year-old was, in fact, the last Australian to score a hundred for his country against India back in 2017 when he made 111 in the first innings of the Dharamsala Test.

Since then the Aussies went 11 completed innings, all in Australia, without a century before Smith himself broke the jinx.

Prior to Australia's first innings in the ongoing Test at the SCG which ended at 338, the individual highest score by an Australian batsman was 79 by Marcus Harris during the last series in 2018-19. Harris is sitting on the bench in this series.

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