Top Sports News Headlines Today, September 20, 2019: A day after Rishabh Pant let his team down with his shot selection — caught at short fine leg off the fourth ball he faced — in the second T20 International against South Africa, chief selector MSK Prasad said there were players being groomed for the slot though Pant remains the first-choice for now. Prasad’s committee has picked the 21-year-old as India’s first-choice ‘keeper-batsman across formats, with an eye on the future.
Sai Praneeth crashes out of China Open
B Sai Praneeth suffered a three-game loss to world no.9 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting in the quarterfinals to draw curtains on India’s campaign at the China Open World Tour Super 1000 badminton tournament on Friday. Almost a month after dispatching the Indonesian en route his historic world championships bronze at Basel, world no.15 Praneeth went down to the same opponent 21-16 6-21 16-21 in 55 minutes to end his campaign. Ginting will now take on eighth seeded Denmark’s Anders Antonsen, who had clinched the silver at the World Championships.
India A vs South Africa A unofficial Test drawn
A fitting end to an evenly-matched encounter. Aiden Markram named 'Man of the match' for his 161 to rescue South Africa A and share a crucial partnership with Wiaan Mulder who scored an unbeaten 131 and helped his side keep India A bowlers at bay. Priyank Panchal hit a century and Karun Nair a fifty on Day 4 at Mysuru.
Sushil Kumar loses his opening round
Returning to the World Championship after eight years, double Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar lost his opening round bout to Azerbaijan’s Khadzhimurad Gadzhiyev on Friday. Using all his experience, the wily Indian had raced to a 9-4 lead but lost seven points in a row to lose the 74 kg qualification bout. Sushil employed a four-point throw after trailing 0-2 to take lead and further consolidated it with another four-point throw, which came from a difficult position.
Sushil Kumar has the heart but that’s not enough anymore. The 36- year old loses 2018 Junior World champion Khadzimurad Gadhziyev 11-9 in Rd 1 of the 74kg freestyle category. He had led 9-4 after the first period but age has taken its toll on his speed and stamina pic.twitter.com/iEktQ7tCVV— jonathan selvaraj (@jon_selvaraj) September 20, 2019
Mirabai Chanu misses podium
Last year, at the weightlifters camp in Shilaroo, before a lower-back injury knackered her, Mirabai Chanu was in buoyant mood. For, she was consistently breaching the 200kg barrier, an ambition that has been burning in her for nearly a decade, and a yardstick that’s the bare minimum for her to be considered among the elite of lifters in the 49kg category. Even in warm-up lifts, she was heaving 200-plus bells without much effort, her movements fluent and graceful. “It’s coming off smoothly, without any jerks. Every time I am about to lift, I get positive vibes. It has become a routine, and now, it’s a matter of repeating this in big tournaments,” she said, smiling beatifically.
Ronaldo goes down the memory lane
Cristiano Ronaldo seems to be on his way to being reunited with a few kind strangers from his childhood who had given him free food as a child. In a recent interview with ITV, Ronaldo had revealed that he had endured a difficult time in his early years – so much so that he often went around looking for free food. He had said that there had been at least three women – one of whom he identified as Edna – who were employees at a McDonald’s store in Portugal who took pity on him and gave him free burgers.
Bajrang Punia alleges cheating
Bajrang Punia, World No.1 65kg freestyle wrestler, lost his semifinal bout against home wrestler Daulet Niyazbekov in a controversial manner after locking down an Olympics berth on Day 6 of the World Championships on Thursday. Bajrang’s frustrated coach Shako Benitidis was visibly furious at some of the decisions as the semifinal bout ended 9-9. Since Niyazbekov had secured a bigger throw of four points in the bout, he was declared the winner.
बजरंग v/s नियाज़ (कजाखस्तान) का सेमीफाइनल मैच देखकर कोई भी सही या गलत में फर्क कर सकता है। फिर वहां बैठे अम्पायर को ये क्यूँ नही दिखा? इतने बड़े टूर्नामेंट में इतनी बड़ी लापरवाही? कजाखस्तान बहुत ही गलत तरीके से खेल रहा था ये सबने देखा।— Yogeshwar Dutt (@DuttYogi) September 19, 2019
Big day for Ravi Dahiya
That India would win an Olympic quota at the World Wrestling Championship in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Thursday was a given. But few would have imagined that Ravi Dahiya, the 20-year-old 57kg freestyle wrestler who was making his debut at this stage, would get there before Bajrang Punia, the 65kg world number one who is also India’s biggest medal hope in Tokyo. But Dahiya, as the world learnt, has a reputation of stoking curiosity and being the ‘unlikely man’. He would now fight for the bronze medal on Friday.
Team management concerned about Rishabh Pant
Speaking to The Indian Express, Prasad spoke about monitoring Pant’s workload and grooming his backups. “We are monitoring the workload of Rishabh. Of course, we have been grooming backups across all formats. We have the young KS Bharath doing well in the longer format for India A. We also have Ishan Kishan and Sanju Samson doing well in the shorter formats for India ‘A’ and domestic cricket,” Prasad said.