Sydney Thunder beat Melbourne Stars to win Big Bash League

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Sydney Thunder

Sydney Thunder have won their maiden Big Bash League title by defeating Melbourne Stars in the final of the Australian T20 tournament. Sydney defeated Melbourne by three wickets in spite of Kevin Peterson’s blistering 39-ball-74.

Batting first, Melbourne Stars put up a total of 176 runs for 9 wickets in 20 overs helped by Kevin Pietersen’s blistering 74 runs. Sydney Thunder (181 for 7) achieved the target with 3 balls to spare as in-form opener Usman Khawaja displayed his batting skills in his 40-ball-70 guiding the Thunders’ chase.

Sydney Thunder did lose quick wickets towards the end, but the pace set by openers Usman Khawaja and Jacques Kallis early in the inning proved enough to secure a victory.

In the end, a six by Ben Rohrer sealed the match in favour of the Thunders in 19.3 overs. This is a remarkable turnaround for Sydney team that was at the bottom of point table in three of the previous four editions of the BBL.

It seemed a big day for Sydney Thunder as the women’s team of the franchise also won the inaugural Women’s Big Bash League.

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Eight people killed in Gurdaspur terrorist attack

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GurdaspurAt least eight people were killed after a group of terrorists opened fire at a public bus and stormed a police station Punjab’s Dinanagar town in the frontier district of Gurdaspur today morning.

The militants also targeted another part of the complex where the families of police personnel reside. A Superintendent of Police, two home guards and three civilians are among those killed in the attack.

The Hindu quoted a source saying that intelligence inputs on July 24 had warned that 10 Lashkar-e-Taiba (Let) terrorists headed by commander Maqbool Khan are trying to infiltrate from Dudhiniyal, Jammu to carry out attacks in India on August 15 or before with the help of Pakistan Rangers and that Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) is coordinating the efforts.

Gurdaspur attack
However, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that he had ordered increased security on the border with Pakistan, although it is unclear who is responsible for the attack.

He also tweeted:

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, on the contrary, appeared to blame the Union government. He said “The terrorists didn’t come from Punjab, they came from  the border. It’s the Centre’s job to seal the border.”

Meanwhile, five live bombs were reportedly recovered from nearby railway tracks in Gurdaspur.

Video:

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WATCH: Arjun Tendulkar left-arm seam bowling at Lord’s cricket ground in England

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Arjun Tendulkar

When the English cricket team practiced at Lord’s for the second Investec Ashes Test beginning Thursday, a 15-year-old left-arm seamer was seen bowling at them. Not that the England batsmen were aware of the surname of Arjun Tendulkar who had joined the other bowlers at the nets to help the English cricket team prepare for the upcoming Test match against Australia. But young Arjun, son of legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, was surely impressive maintaining a good line and length throughout the training session. His bowling action was also pleasing.

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It was surely not the ideal preparation for England’s batsmen who will be facing the left-arm pace attack of Mitchell Johnson on the cricket pitch. But Arjun Tendulkar seemed quite happy with the accomplishment. England assistant coach Paul Farbrace was seen congratulating the young talent at the end of the training session.

Arjun also chatted with some of the England players and they were surprised when they came to know about his age, according to ESPN Cricinfo.

 

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Sachin was a regular at the MCC Academy when he was part of the Indian cricket team and now it is his son Arjun who uses facilities of the club which is based at Lord’s cricket ground.

The Tendulkar family has an apartment near Lord’s and it is often spotted there during this time of the year. It was at the request of Neil Burns, the former county keeper, who is a friend of Sachin Tendulkar, that Arjun was allowed to bowl at the nets.

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Mumbai Indians are IPL champions

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Mumbai Indians

Mumbai Indians have won the eighth edition of the Indian Premier League somewhat in the same fashion as their victory in the 2013 edition of the IPL. It was the same ground – Kolkata’s Eden Gardens, the same opposition – Chennai Super Kings (CSK) that Mumbai Indians triumphed over. What was different and historical is the remarkable turnaround that the Rohit Sharma led side managed to achieve after their dismal start to the tournament, losing their first five matches and being at the bottom of the points table for the first two weeks of this edition of the IPL.

MS Dhoni won the toss and decided to field first but the decision did not pay off as Rohit Sharma and Lendl Simmons launched an onslaught forcing the Chennai Super Kings into submission. Parthiv Patel was run out early by Faf du Plessis’ brilliant fielding but after Rohit Sharma walked in there was no stopping the Mumbai Indians.

Rohit Sharma scored 50 off 26 balls while Simmons’ 68 came of 45 deliveries as Mumbai Indians put up a total of 202/5 in 20 overs. Kieron Pollard continued his consistent batting performance and added 36 of just 18 balls he faced getting good support from Ambati Rayudu (36 of 24 balls).

With a big target of 203, Chennai Super Kings needed to fire right from the beginning and the lack of depth in batting in the CSK camp was evident. Dwayne Smith did reach half century but a strike rate of little over run a ball was not enough for CSK. Suresh Raina too could manage just 28 of 19 balls while MS Dhoni was bowled by Lasith Malinga for 18.

In the end, Chennai Super Kings just managed to reach 161 runs for the loss 8 wickets in their chase in the #IPLFinal. Mumbai Indians owner Nita Ambani was all praise for the team.

 

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IPL8: Kohli, Gayle, luck take RCB past Sunrisers

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Virat Kohli

HYDERABAD: Royal Challengers Bangalore reached a reduced target of 81 runs in just 5.5 overs to defeat Sun Risers Hyderabad in a rain-curtailed match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Friday night.

First the match was reduced to 11 overs a side with Hyderabad scoring 135 for 3 powered by MC Henriques’ superb knock of 57 runs off just 22 balls. David Warner remained unbeaten at 52 off just 32 balls. Then a second spell of rain further reduced the target to 81 runs in six overs (Duckworth Lewis method) at the start of the RCB inning.

It is easier to chase down 81 from six overs than 136 from 11. And with Chris Gayle, AB de Villiers and Virat Kohli on their side RCB always knew they had the ammunition. Gayle fired right from the first ball that he faced and raced to 35 off just 9 balls. RCB were 41 for 0 after the first two overs bowled by Dale Steyn and Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

But the third over brought the Sunrisers back into the game with Gayle lifting one into the deep midwicket and finding Shikhar Dhawan’s safe hands. The next ball by Moises Henriques got rid of the dangerous AB de Villiers bringing joy to the SRH camp and to the Hyderabad crowd. But Royal Challengers’ skipper Virat Kohli who batted till the end ensured that he has the last laugh.

The Royals needed 12 runs off the last four balls and Kohli hit two intelligent boundaries meticulously placing Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s yorkers through a tight-packed off side field. And then lifted the second last delivery to long off. David Warner caught the ball well within the boundary but then stepped on the boundary cushions with the ball still in his hand apparently celebrating the dismissal. Kohli jumped with joy and went into celebrations while the umpires took their time to confirm that it was a six.

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Republic Day LIVE: Barack Obama witnesses parade with Narendra Modi

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Republic day

India is celebrating its 66th Republic Day today with United States President Barack Obama as the Chief Guest to witness the splendid annual parade at New Delhi’s Rajpath.

US president Barack Obama and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi were received with loud cheers at Rajpath. Obama is the first US President to be invited at the annual function – considered one of the biggest honours that India can bestow on a foreign leader.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi first paid homage to martyred soldiers at Amar Jawan Jyoti by laying a wreath. The national flag was then unfurled and the National anthem – Jan Gan Man was played with the customary 21-gun salute. President Pranab Mukherjee took the salute as the parade commenced with showering of flower petals by Indian Air Force helicopters. The IAF helicopters displayed the Indian tricolour and flags of the Army, Air Force and Navy.

India’s military might and cultural diversity were on full display as troops marched past spectators.

The IAF tableaux showcased ’50 years of 1965 war’.

First all-woman #RepublicDay march by Army, Navy, Air Force led by Captain Divya A was held.

Barack Obama gave a thumbs-up to BSF’s daredevil riders at the function while US First Lady Michelle Lady was seen clapping as she watched the #republicDay parade.

Arunachal Pradesh displays the Igu dance at the #RepublicDay parade.

 

More Updates to follow

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Narendra Modi: Even a tea vendor can become Prime Minister

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Huge crowd turned out for Narendra Modi's rallyVARANASI: Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi, went out all guns blazing against the Nehru-Gandhi family at his Vijay Shankhnad in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, today.

Blaming the Nehru-Gandhi family for the plight of the poor, the Gujarat Chief Minister said that even after 45 years of rule, the family was not able to eliminate poverty from the country. He alleged that the Congress party remembered the poor only ahead of elections.

Modi alleged that UPA government’s hatred towards poor was evident and referred to the comments of one of its leaders that a tea vendor cannot become the country’s Prime Minister. The BJP leader retorted that even a labourer or a cobbler can become prime minister with the blessings of the people. “I am suprised that they are openly saying a tea-seller cannot become the Prime Minister. If people give their blessings, then a weaver, a farm worker or even a shoeshine man can become the Prime Minister,” Narendra Modi said. Modi also exhorted the youth and the people of Uttar Pradesh to vote for the right party during the 2014 elections.  Narendra Modi addressing Varanasi rally

Narendra Modi also talked of bringing Ram Rajya while addressing a huge crowd in the temple town. This was the first veiled reference to the Ram temple issue which the Gujarat Chief Minister has avoided till now. “I have faith in the people of Uttar Pradesh. Your ancestors had established Ram Rajya. Had the people not been empowered, there would never have been ‘Ram Rajya’ here. The state has all that is needed for ‘Ram Rajya’. The strength, tradition and will needed for establishing Ram Rajya is there in you, Modi said. Modi had consciously avoided reference to the Ram temple in his public rallies in his efforts to shed his Hindu hardliner image and portray himself as a more inclusive and tolerant leader.

Addressing a huge gathering at the Khajuri village, Narendra Modi referred to Varanasi’s saree industry that is in poor shape and held the Congress responsible for the sorry state of affairs.

He also hit back at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh over his comment that leaders of some parties were making tall promises which they would not be able to fulfill. Modi said he had come to Uttar Pradesh not to make promises but to deliver once his party’s government comes to power.

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Minor gang raped by five men, police beat up victim taking her into custody

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BANASKANTHA (GUJARAT): In a shocker from Gujarat, a student of Class 10 was gang raped by five men at Diyodar in Banaskantha district. To add to her ordeal, police at first refused to file her complaint and kept her in custody for more than a day. The victim alleged that the police even beat her up and demanded Rs 2 lakh from her father for her release.

Rape victims suffer more after ordeal

All this was happening when the country was remembering the December 16 fatal gang rape of a medical student in New Delhi after a year of the incident and was debating the stringent anti-rape laws enacted by the central government.

It has been 15 days since the incident took place and the police are yet to nab the accused. The family has now approached the Banaskantha district police with its complaint.

The victim informed media persons that the men took her to Ahmedabad in a swift car where five people raped her. Then they left her at the Palanpur railway crossing. She was spotted by her relatives and police.

As per some reports, the accused are workers of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and are being shielded by the police.

NS Ninama, Deputy Superintendent of Banaskantha district admitted that people have been unable to arrest any of the five accused till date. A relative of the victim said that while prompt action was taken in cases of gang rape in New Delhi and Mumbai and the culprits were arrested within two-three days of the incident, this case of Diyodar has been ignored by the police and the media.

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