Monday, October 5, 2020

Suresh Raina, Nitishwar Kumar discuss initiative to set up sports academies to train aspiring J-K cricketers

Suresh Raina with Nitishwar Kumar (Photo/ DIPR-J&K Twitter)

New Delhi [India], October 5 (ANI): Former India cricketer Suresh Raina on Monday met Nitishwar Kumar, Principal Secretary to Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, to discuss the initiative to set up sports academies to train young cricketers from far-flung areas of the Union Territory.

"Celebrity Cricketer Suresh Raina calls on Principal Secy to LG @nitishwarKumar, discuss the initiative to set up sports academies to train aspiring cricketers especially youngsters from far-flung areas of Jammu and Kashmir," the Department of Information and Public Relations (DIPR), Jammu and Kashmir tweeted.

Last month, Raina had said there is "so much more in store" for the Union Territory after the inauguration of Jammu and Kashmir Police Women's 2020 Cricket Tournament at Anantnag.

"Excited to be part of the inauguration of Jammu and Kashmir Police Women's 2020 Cricket Tournament at Anantnag, South Kashmir along with LG @manojsinha_ Sir. This is just a humble beginning. So much more in store for J&K!" Raina had tweeted.

Also, he had met Sinha last month and had requested him to set up a Cricket Academy in Jammu and Kashmir. He had also agreed to set up 10 schools, five each in Kashmir and Jammu divisions, to give professional cricket training to local youth.

"Cricketer Suresh Raina, who called on Lt Governor Manoj Sinha to set up a Cricket Academy in Jammu and Kashmir, agrees to set up five schools each in Kashmir & Jammu divisions to hone the talent of aspiring youth and train them to become professional cricketers," the J-K DIPR had tweeted. (ANI)

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Hockey India and Aaroogya conduct a session for women's players to raise cancer awareness

Representative Image

New Delhi [India], September 30 (ANI): With October being the breast cancer awareness month globally, Hockey India and the non-profit organization Aaroogya for women cancer Research and Prevention conducted a session via Zoom with the members of the Indian women's hockey team about the early detection and prevention of breast, cervical and oral cancer on Wednesday.

The Co-Founders of Aaroogya - Dr Priyanjali Datta and Dr Dhruv Kacker spoke about how to conduct self-examination for the detection of cancer, the common symptoms of cancer and the advantages of early detection of cancer.

Dr Datta emphasised the fact that women should not expose themselves to mammograms before the age of 45 in case they show symptoms of cancer. They should opt for an ultrasound scan instead.

They also made the Indian women's team players aware of the causes of cancer such as poor lifestyle, consumption of junk food, tobacco, alcohol and most importantly stress, which is one of the major causes of cancer.

They said that the best way to prevent cancer is to have a good lifestyle by regularly exercising and following a healthy diet, and they also lauded the Indian Women's Hockey Team for possessing the right representation of a good lifestyle.

The Indian women's team captain Rani, on behalf of the entire team, said that they will pass on the knowledge they attained during the session to their family members.

"The session on the awareness about cancer was very helpful for us. It was great to be made aware of the common symptoms and causes of cancer and the steps to detect it early which makes it critical, I am sure that this session will help us. Hopefully, Aaroogya can reach out to many more women and help them understand the early detection steps and preventive measures for cancer. We can also pass on the knowledge we have attained today to our own family members and friends," said Rani.

Aaroogya has transformed the way of prevention and early detection for reducing death rates and has provided on-ground data for precision new drugs and better treatment for the population of the Indian subcontinent, in partnership with government and private partners.

"We lose around 600 women everyday in India due to the late detection of cancer. And if we don't address the growing concerns of cancer, around 130 million people could be diagnosed with cancer in India by 2030. Around 2000 women are detected with cancer everyday. We primarily work in the prevention and early detection of Breast, Cervical and Oral Cancer. It's very important to conduct self-examination for symptoms of cancer regularly as early detection of the disease will give one a better chance to recover," emphasised Dr Datta and Dr Kacker.

Speaking on the session, Gyanendro Ningombam, Officiating President, Hockey India said, "While we are living in the midst of a pandemic, it's important to note the dangers of the rising number of cancer cases in India as well, especially breast, cervical and oral cancer. It was very important for the members of the Indian Women's Hockey Team to know about how to detect cancer and the preventive measures that need to be taken. We are absolutely delighted that the non-profit organization Aaroogya conducted a very informative session with the Indian women's hockey team players." (ANI)

Friday, September 25, 2020

BWF postpones Asian leg of World Tour to Jan 2021

BSF logo

Kaula Lumpur [Malaysia], September 25 (ANI): Badminton World Federation (BWF) on Friday postponed the Asian leg of the adjusted BWF World 2020 to January 2021.

The three tournaments - Asia Open-! Super 1000, Asia Open-II Super 1000 and the BWF World Tour Finals - will now be held in Bangkok next year.

"It will feature two Super 1000 tournaments, culminating with the BWF World Tour Finals. The decision was announced at a BWF Council meeting on Thursday evening. This means the 2020 season will now finish in January 2021," BWF said.

BWF and Badminton Association of Thailand, in collaboration with the Government of Thailand, completed a feasibility study to ensure all parties can provide a safe COVID-19 framework to stage the three tournaments.

The study concluded Thailand to be the agreed host of the three-tournament Asian leg.
 BWF greatly appreciates the cooperation of the Badminton Association of Thailand and the support and contribution of the Government of Thailand in committing to this important step as part of the restart of international badminton tournaments.

It was agreed by the BWF Council that staging the Asian leg in November as originally planned was no longer a viable option in being able to guarantee the highest standard of tournament including securing all logistical arrangements for players and participants.

"The three Asian leg tournaments now sit alongside the Denmark Open 2020 (October 13-18) in forming the conclusion to the new-look World Tour 2020 calendar," BWF said. (ANI)

Sunday, September 20, 2020

PCB tests 125 individuals for COVID-19 ahead of National T20 Cup

PCB logo

Lahore [Pakistan], September 20 (ANI): The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Sunday informed that a total of 125 players and support personnel belonging to six Cricket Association Second XI squads were tested for COVID-19 ahead of the upcoming National T20 Cup.

"They will undergo their second tests on
 September 21 under the supervision of the PCB medical team at their respective central stations, which are Lahore's Hotel PC for Central Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Northern and Southern Punjab, and Muridke Country Club for Balochistan and Sindh," PCB said in a release.

On Thursday, 103 players and support personnel belonging to six Cricket Association First XI squads were tested for COVID-19.

Cricketers, who travelled to England with the men's national cricket team, are required to submit the results of their first COVID-19 tests on September 22 to the PCB Medical and Sports Sciences Department. (ANI)

Monday, September 14, 2020

Sports Science has helped players improve their knowledge, feels Venkatesh Shanmugam

Venkatesh Shanmugam

New Delhi [India], September 14 (ANI): Former India football team captain Venkatesh Shanmugam has lauded the contribution of sports science in helping current players improve their knowledge.

Shanmugam, currently employed as the Assistant Coach of the Indian National Team, lamented the lack of prope
r grooming of players off the field during the early days of his career.

"There was no sports science back then which is why we weren't so strict with our diet. We only got physios and doctors after 2000, and then began to learn what we need to do to improve our game," the football-federation">All India Football Federation's (AIFF) official website quoted Shanmugam as saying.

"The off-field knowledge of professional players back then was lacking. Of course on the pitch, they were all great. Players like Bhaichung (Bhutia) and (IM) Vijayan come once in a lifetime. But if you look at the current crop right now, you will understand that they have more knowledge of how to handle things, take care of their body in the off-season, put emphasis on diet," he added.

Shanmugam is also happy over players getting "a lot of exposure".

"I would also like to mention that the current crop is also extremely lucky to have an idea of how to deal with the media. This awareness has had a very big positive impact on their game," he stated.

"Nowadays the number of exposure tours and friendly matches have increased quite a lot. Teams nowadays get a lot of exposure. Even the junior and the women's teams play so many exposure matches," Shanmugam added.

Shanmugam, who also functioned as the head coach of the Indian Arrows, AIFF's developmental team, in the I-League, went on to draw the example of two Arrows products, who are doing well because of the exposure they have received.

"There have been a lot of exposures in the last few years. Especially if you look at Narender (Gahlot) and Amarjit (Singh), who were in the U-17 World Cup, they played close to 50 friendly matches before the main tournament," said Shanmugam.

Comparing things to back in his own times, the 41-year-old stated that the Blue Tigers only started getting exposures after the turn of the millennium.

"We used to hardly get around two friendlies a year before. It was in 2000 that I think we got our first tour when we played some matches in England," he continued.

The India assistant coach further went on to explain how different things were, back in the 90s. "In 94-95, most of the players had to travel via trains. And even the accommodations and facilities were not close to what they are today. When we used to have the camps in Kolkata, we used to stay at the SAI complex. But that has changed since 2000," he said.

"At that time a lot of the players even used to wear their own club jerseys in National Camps. Some would be wearing East Bengal, some Mohun Bagan, or other clubs. But all of that has changed. It's so professional now," Shanmugam continued. (ANI)

Sunday, August 30, 2020

SAI to open shooting facility for development group athletes from Sept 2

SAI logo

New Delhi [India], Aug 30 (ANI): The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has decided to open up its shooting facility for developmental group athletes from September 2 as India enters Unlock 4.

SAI has been opening up its facilities for sporting activities in a phased manner after the Government of India announced Unlock 1.

"In the first leg, SAI has geared up to open up sporting activities for shooters of the Target Olympic Podium Developmental Group and athletes of National Centre of Excellence (NCOE) at the Karni Singh Shooting Range (KSSR) from September 2," SAI said in a statement.

Earlier, in the first phase, Olympic and Paralympic-bound athletes began sporting activities at SAI's sporting facilities.

The decision to open up sporting facilities in a phased manner has been taken to ensure that safety and training continuity of athletes can move hand in hand. Separate slots have been reserved for the Olympic-bound core group of elite shooters to ensure continued training in a safe environment.

Guidelines of the Health Ministry and SAI's Standard Operating Procedure will be followed strictly during training of developmental group athletes. (ANI)

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Don't see US sporting boycotts making their way to England: Jurgen Klopp

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp.

London [UK], Aug 29 (ANI): Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp believes that the US sporting boycotts won't make their way to England even though the battle against racism is a "worldwide issue".

His remark comes as various sports in America were called off earlier this week as protests over the police shooting of Jacob Blake continued.

"Whatever actions they take there they will have their reasons for it and I don't see them at the moment coming to England, but we have to see. It is a worldwide issue but, at the moment for some specific cases, they are thinking about proper actions in America because another thing happened that shouldn't have happened," quoted Klopp as saying.

"That is why the players there do what they do but I don't see it coming at the moment in England," he added.

Earlier this week, many from the National Basketball Association (NBA) boycotted their games after Blake was shot seven times in Wisconsin.

Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer, the National Hockey League and the WNBA also called off their games amid the anti-racism demonstrations taking place America.

England's football community had shown its solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement when the 2019-20 season resumed in June after a coronavirus-enforced lockdown.

All clubs wore jerseys with "Black Lives Matter" printed on the back and players also took a knee before the start of each game in memory of George Floyd, who passed away after a white police officer pressed his knee into his neck.

Liverpool had won the 2019-20 Premier League season and the side will take on Arsenal in the FA Community Shield later today. (ANI)

'His magic with hockey stick will never be forgotten': PM Modi pays tribute to Major Dhyan Chand on National Sports Day

Prime Minister Narendra Modi. File Photo

New Delhi [India], Aug 29 (ANI): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday paid tribute to Indian hockey legend Major Dhyan Chand on his birth 115th anniversary, stating that "his magic with the hockey stick can never be forgotten".

On August 29, India celebrates National Sports Day to commemorate the birth anniversary of hockey wizard Dhyan Chand.

Paying his tribute to the Indian hockey wizard, Priem Minister Modi tweeted, "Today, on National Sports Day, we pay tributes to Major Dhyan Chand, whose magic with the hockey stick can never be forgotten. This is also a day to laud the outstanding support given by the families, coaches, and support staff towards the success of our talented athletes."

He said National Sports Day is "a day to celebrate the remarkable achievements of all those exemplary sportspersons who have represented India in various sports and made our nation proud. Their tenacity and determination are outstanding."

The Prime Minister asserted that the government is making all efforts to popularise sports and support sporting talent in the country.

"Government of India is making numerous efforts to popularise sports and support sporting talent in India. At the same time, I urge everyone to make sports and fitness exercises a part of their daily routine. There are many benefits of doing so. May everyone be happy and healthy," he said in a subsequent tweet.

The legendary hockey player Dhyan Chand was born in 1905 and was known for his magical hockey skills. He was part of the Indian hockey team which struck gold in the Olympics of 1928, 1932, and, 1936.

National Sports Awards which include the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award, the Arjuna award, the Dronacharya award, and the Dhyan Chand award, are conferred on athletes every year by the President of India at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on August 29, the National Sports Day.

However, this year, the names would be announced by President Ram Nath Kovind virtually. (ANI)

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Ek India Team India - Designing a national indentity: Homegrown agency Smitten designs new identity for Indian Olympic Association

A contemporary and sporty new indentity for Indian athletes and officials to represent the country on the world arena. (Photo: ANI)

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India] Aug 26 (ANI/BusinessWire India): The Indian Olympic Association has adopted a new identity to commemorate 100 years of Indian participation at the Olympic Games. The new logo and brand identity were designed by SMITTEN®, a communication design, and branding firm founded in India.
The new identity of the IOA will be used by athletes while competing on the world arena, as well as in all official events and ceremonies at the Olympics, Commonwealth Games and other international sporting events.
Introducing Team IndiaFor the very first time, the identity also includes a logo specially designed for Team India, similar to the approach taken by Team GB and Team USA in international sporting events.
"India has arrived and belongs firmly in the world arena. Banding together under a unifying identity allows a country to rally behind their athletes and cheer for what their participation represents," said Smita Rajgopal Poliak, Founder and Global Creative Director at SMITTEN®.
HistoryThe previous logo of the IOA was based on the pre-Independence Star of India emblem. This redesign, therefore, was an opportunity to create a contemporary logo that would resonate with all enthusiasts of Indian sports and the diaspora across the globe.
InspirationIn a country with many cultures, and varied sentiments, it was important to identify a visual that could resonate with each and every Indian, and represent all sports at the Olympic Games equally. The flag's tricolour has been integrated vertically into the word INDIA, in a non-fuss aesthetic that can stand the test of time.
"The negative space between the I and N represents 1 (one), which merges perfectly with the themes of unity and team. We reinforced the message further with the anthem Ek India Team India which can be seamlessly extended to digital platforms in the form of a unique hashtag," said Neethi Nair, Director of Creative and Marketing, India at SMITTEN®.
International context"To a global audience, India often conjures up visual tropes like the Taj Mahal, peacocks or elephants, and not necessarily our national flag. This was an opportunity for us to clearly associate our country with our national colours. For example, when you say 'red, blue and white', USA or GB are often the first countries that come to mind. Much in the same way, we wanted the tricolour to be 'owned' by our country and quite literally imprinted into INDIA," said Rajgopal Poliak.
"It's a chance to celebrate Team India with the tricolour that every Indian knows and loves while translating it across designs for various physical elements like team kits, apparel, and merchandise," explained Sruthi Prabhakar, Art Director, India at SMITTEN®, while speaking about increasing public interest in global sporting events and making the games appealing to the youth.
The result"What I particularly like about the Indian Olympic Association's new identity is the story behind the logo. It captures the essence of the tiranga and tells a powerful story from many angles appealing to all audiences we would like to reach out to in India and beyond, athletes and viewers. I liked SMITTEN's conceptual thinking about design and its contemporary aesthetics while taking into account the feedback. The new identity that they have helped us create is one which will carry well for years to come," added Dr Narinder Dhruv Batra, President, IOA.
"We like to promote athletes from all walks of life so when it came to IOA's rebranding exercise, we decided to entrust a homegrown design studio with the task. After reviewing their portfolio, we were confident that they would do a great job. But when we were presented with the logo and accompanying tagline options by Smita and Neethi, they far exceeded our expectations. SMITTEN's processes of studying 206 NOC logos to narrow down on the route the new identity could take and then translating that into a contemporary design that captures the true spirit of the country was something that really stood out to us," said Rajeev Mehta, Secretary General, IOA.
SMITTEN® is an international communication design firm founded in early 2008 by Smita Rajgopal Poliak. It currently has offices in New York, Bengaluru, and Chennai with a presence in Dubai.
The agency services businesses across the world and has worked on brands such as Ashok Leyland, United Nations, ITC Hotels, Hilton, Johnnie Walker, Funskool, and so on. (ANI/BusinessWire India)

Planning to host BRICS Games during Khelo India Games 2021: Keren Rijiju

Sports Ministers of BRICS meet via video conference to assess the impact of Covid 19 on sports. (Photo: Kiren Rijiju Twitter)

New Delhi [India], Aug 26 (ANI): Union Minister of Youth and Sports Kiren Rijiju has said that India is planning to host BRICS Games 2021, which will be aligned with the Khelo India Games scheduled for next year.

"BRICS Games 2021 will be held during the same time and at same venues as of Khelo India Games 2021 so that our players from various parts of the country, who will gather for Khelo India Games, will have the benefit and great opportunity of witnessing BRICS Games from close quarters. This will be a great morale booster and motivational moment for them," Rijiju said in a video conference between the Sports Ministers of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) on Tuesday.

Stressing on the importance of building fitness and sporting culture to promote the well-being of citizens, the Sports Minister said," One of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) for UN Agenda 2030 is to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all, at all ages. To aligning sports activities and programmes with this SDG, the Government of India has taken several initiatives and launched schemes and programmes. To keep people healthy and fit, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched FIT INDIA Movement in August 2019."

Speaking about organising sporting events as India unlocks, Rijiju said," During India's 2021 Chairmanship of the BRICS, Sports and Games will be one of the deliverables. The Government of India organises annual sports competitions under the Khelo India scheme. As we find ways to get over COVID-19, we are hopeful of organising Khelo India Youth Games and Khelo India University Games in 2021."

"During Khelo India Youth Games 2021, we will invite BRICS member countries to showcase their traditional indigenous games during the inaugural or closing ceremony of Khelo India," he added.

The Union Minister further said that for the Fit India Movement, the government is playing the role of catalyst so that Fit India becomes a people's movement, adding that the main focus of the movement is to create awareness among Indians about the importance of fitness in their daily lives. (ANI)

Monday, May 25, 2020

Sports fraternity condoles Balbir Singh's demise

Legendary Hockey player Balbir Singh. (Photo: Harbhajan Singh Twitter.)

New Delhi (ANI): Spinner Harbhajan Singh on Monday condoled the demise of veteran hockey player Balbir and said that the legend has to be one of the greatest sporting icons in India.

"A doyen of Indian sports Shri Balbir Singh Senior is no more. When you look back at his achievements, you just remain awestruck, 3 Olympic gold medals, five goals in the Olympic final. Manager of the World Cup-winning team, Possibly among India's greatest sporting icons. May his soul rest RIP," Harbhajan tweeted.

Sprinter PT Usha also expressed condolences on the demise of Balbir Singh and said that the hockey legend was an athlete par excellence.

"Deeply suddened to hear of the passing of Balbir Singh Sr Ji. An Athlete par excellence and a role model beyond words! His bestowed hands may strengthen my passions more. My condolences to his family, friends, and fns!#balbirsingh #Balbirhockey," PT Usha tweeted.

"Rest in Peace to one of the Greatest and Legendary player of all time Padam Shri Balbir Singh Senior ji - you will live forever in our heart," current men's hockey captain Manpreet Singh tweeted.

The veteran hockey player and suffered a cardiac arrest on May 12 and after that, he suffered two more cardiac arrests during the course of his admission in the hospital. "Balbir Singh passed away this morning," his grandson Kabir said in a statement on Monday.

Balbir Singh was a three-time Olympic gold champion. He played a key role in India's Olympic victories in London (1948), as a vice-captain in Helsinki (1952) and as the captain in Melbourne. (1956).

In his illustrious playing career from 1947-1958, Balbir Sr. won 61 international caps and scored a whopping 246 goals. He was also the manager of the 1975 World Cup-winning team.
By: ANI.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Ronaldo is a king, says Rohit Sharma

Opening batsman Rohit Sharma. (Photo: ANI)
New Delhi: "Cristiano Ronaldo is the king," said opening batsman Rohit Sharma when he was asked whether he is a fan of the Portuguese star or not. Rohit was doing a Facebook live chat with Bangladesh opening batsman Tamim Iqbal and it was then that both players opened up about their love for Real Madrid and Ronaldo.

The Indian opening batsman has been quite vocal about his support for La Liga side Real Madrid and last year, Rohit also went on to see the 'El Clasico' between Madrid and Barcelona last year. When asked to say something about Ronaldo, Rohit replied: "Yes, of course. Who doesn't love Ronaldo? He is the king. What he has done with his career is simply outstanding. You have to applaud whatever he has achieved in his career".

"It is not easy because of the background that he came from. He had a very rough time at the start. I appreciate all these people who have a hard time in their career at the start, and towards the end, they have gone on to make it very big out of whatever opportunities they had," he added. Earlier, the Indian skipper Virat Kohli had also chosen Ronaldo over Argentine Lionel Messi during an Instagram live chat with former England skipper Kevin Pietersen.

Ronaldo is the first player to win the Champions League five times. He last won the Champions League in 2018 as he helped Real Madrid claim the title.

Ronaldo, however, now plays for the Serie A club Juventus. The Portuguese striker has also managed to win five Ballon d'Or.

In his career so far, Ronaldo has won three Premier League titles, two La Liga titles, one Serie A, five Champions League. He first made headlines in 2003 after Manchester United signed him on. He received the highest amount for a teenager at that point in time.

The striker currently has 99 international goals to his name and he would look to go past 109 goals of Iran's Ali Daei. If he reaches the feat, he will become the top international scorer of all time.

If Ronaldo manages to reach the top of the goal-scoring charts this year in Serie A, he will become the first player in history to have been top goal-scorer in the English (Premier League), Spanish (La Liga) and Italian (Serie A) leagues.
By: ANI.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Football player Andrea Rinaldi dies at 19

New Delhi: AC Legnano player Andrea Rinaldi has died at the age of 19, the club confirmed on Monday.

Terming the player a "warrior", the club said Rinaldi fought for three days after suffering an aneurysm.

"AC Legnano, the city and the entire football universe, at all levels, today live one of their most unsetting days. Andrea Rinaldi, our warrior, has left us. An aneurysm snatched him in the prime of life, with a life ahead of his and with a creer that primised bright goals. A sudden and shocking tragedy, impossible even to imagine," the club said in a statement.

Legnano chairman Giovanni Munafo called Rinaldi an 'extraordinary boy' as he expressed condolences to the player's family.

"When Andrea came to training, he came first to greet me. This is a memory I will carry in my heart. An extraordinary boy, an example for everyone. On behalf of the club, I express my deepest condolences to the family. We are sure that Andrea, from up there, will be the usual warrior like always, who fought in the middle of the pitch to bring the Legnano fans joy," Munafo said.
By: ANI.

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