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Hockey India to conduct state-level courses for potential umpires and technical officials

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Hockey India to conduct state-level courses for potential umpires and technical officials

New Delhi, May 18 (IANS) The Hockey India has launched its Match Officials Education & Development Plan as part of the induction programme for potential umpires and technical officials in the Hockey India officiating system. This initiative aims to develop and educate the current officials officiating in district or state-level tournaments, providing them with an opportunity to progress to the status of Hockey India-registered national umpire or technical official.

The educational plan will provide officials with the opportunity to advance and be inducted into the Hockey India officiating system. This initiative will initially enable them to officiate in Hockey India-sanctioned All India Sub Junior & Junior category Tournaments & National Championships, Hockey India informed in a release on Saturday.

The applicants can register for these courses through the Hockey India Member Unit Portal:

To take part in the state-level panel course for technical officials, the candidate must be up to 35 years age while umpires course, the age limit is up to 25 years. The officials must not have any standing disciplinary action against them, should have a minimum of 2 years officiating experience in State Level Championships, and should have a genuine interest in developing as a Hockey India Match Official.

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The selected candidates will attend the Hockey India Umpires & Technical Officials courses scheduled for June 2024, which will be held across Four zones and also for North East States: Gwalior, Pune, Kadapa, Jamshedpur and Guwahati, the Hockey India release said.

Selected officials will receive interactive learning and study material, keeping them updated with the latest FIH rules and regulations. They will be assessed by a highly experienced team of Hockey India-registered Technical Delegates/Umpire Managers.

Based on their assessments by experienced Hockey India registered Technical Delegates/Umpire Managers, they will have the opportunity to upgrade themselves and be eligible to attend the Hockey India Zonal Level Courses. Furthermore, they will be eligible to attend FIH Academy & AHF Courses and workshops.

–IANS

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Bashir has shown the world what he can do: Stokes

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Bashir has shown the world what he can do: Stokes

Bashir has shown the world what he can do: Stokes

Nottingham, July 22 (IANS) England captain Ben Stokes heaped praise on young spinner Shoaib Bashir after his series-clinching figures of 5-41 in second innings that handed the hosts 241-run victory against West Indies at Trent Bridge on Sunday.

England have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series. Bashir played a huge role in setting up mammoth victory as he became the youngest English bowler to take a five-fer in a home Test and also the first spinner to take five wickets in a Test innings at the Nottingham venue since 2006.

“He has got so much talent and he’s got an unbelievable desire to get better,” Stokes said of Bashir after the match. “His intent is to always take wickets and never just to hold an end up. It’s really good for a young guy to put in a performance that wins England a Test. He was pretty emotional at the end. It’s a pretty cool day for him. He has shown the world what he can do.”

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Bashir’s rise from relative obscurity has been well known. He was spotted and selected for the India trip earlier this year after England captain Stokes watched recordings of him bowling to Alastair Cook on X (previously Twitter). Despite not being a regular for Somerset, the youthful offspinner’s 2.35-metre release point and length control were thought critical for a hard trip of the subcontinent.

Bashir confirmed his inspired selection pick with 17 wickets in three Tests in India, including five-fers in Ranchi and Dharamsala. In contrast, Somerset loaned Bashir to Worcestershire at the start of this County Championship season, with Jack Leach selected as the sole spinner. However, Stokes, Brendon McMullum, and Rob Key chose Bashir over Leach, the current spin bowling leader, for the West Indies series.

“The decisions we make are all based around not only how far we think talent can take a player, but if we think they’re good enough for international cricket straight away,” Stokes said.

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“Bash showed what he could do in India with conditions in his favour, but the pitch this week didn’t really offer much for spin and he has taken seven wickets in the match. The ability he had to be able to change his pace, change his line, and manipulate how he wanted the ball to react out of the surface was top-class. I don’t want to sound like it’s an ‘I told you so’ kind of thing, but it sort of is.”

While Bashir took all the credit on the final day of the Test, Stokes praised Mark Wood, whose 28 overs yielded only two wickets. While the England captain did not say if his pace ace would be rested for the last game of the series, he predicted that certain opponents would face Wood’s intensity this summer.

“On another day, Woody could have got Man of the Match, the way that he bowled was just phenomenal,” Stokes said. “He’s not got the rewards this game, but someone will pay eventually this summer. In batting we talk a lot about partnerships, and it’s the same thing with bowling. You look at the amount of wickets at the other end when Woody was bowling his spells, that’s the effect that a bowler like Woody can have.

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“He’s got the heart of a lion, he’ll run in ball after ball after ball for us. And his pace is just phenomenal but it’s the skill that he’s got as well, to be able to consistently hit a certain area, with batters always thinking ‘when is it coming at my head?”

The third and final Test of the series will be played at Edgbaston from July 26.

–IANS

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Gambhir backs Rohit, Virat to play 2027 ODI World Cup if fitness goes well

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Gambhir backs Rohit, Virat to play 2027 ODI World Cup if fitness goes well

Gambhir backs Rohit, Virat to play 2027 ODI World Cup if fitness goes well

Mumbai, July 22 (IANS) Newly-appointed Indian team head coach Gautam Gambhir backed captain Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli for the 2027 ODI World Cup saying that both have a lot of cricket left and if they maintain their fitness, they can play in the next quadrennial showpiece.

Rohit and Kohli announced retirements from T20I cricket following the T20 World Cup final win against South Africa that ended India’s 11-year-long ICC title drought.

The duo confirmed that they will continue to play the other formats of the game, and Gambhir feels that their exceptional qualities to deliver in big tournaments will be crucial for the country in the upcoming Australia tour and next year’s Champions Trophy.

“I think they have shown what they can deliver on the big stage, whether it’s the T20 World Cup or the 50-over World Cup as well,” Gambhir said in the first press conference on Monday.

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“One thing I can be very clear of is that both those guys have a lot of cricket left in them. More importantly, with the Champions Trophy (in 2025) and a big tour of Australia (in November 2024), obviously they would be motivated enough. And then, hopefully, if they can keep their fitness, the 2027 (ODI) World Cup as well.

“But this is a very personal decision. I can’t say how much cricket is left in them. Ultimately, it’s up to them as well, it’s up to the players. How much can they contribute to the team’s success. Because, ultimately, it’s the team that is important.

“But looking at what Virat and Rohit can deliver, I think they still have a lot of cricket (left to play). They’re still world-class players and obviously any team would want to have both of them for as long as possible,” he added.

The 2027 ODI World Cup will be held in Africa as South Africa, Zimbabwe and Namibia will jointly host the tournament.

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Rohit has not won any ODI World Cup despite coming very close last year before Australia dashed all their hopes in the final. He missed out on the 2011 ODI World Cup-winning squad as India lifted their second ODI title at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Kohli was part of the team and also played a vital knock in the final against Sri Lanka.

Last week, Rohit confirmed that he will continue playing “at least for a while” in the ODIs and Tests.

“I just said it. I don’t look that far ahead. So clearly, you will be seeing me play at least for a while,” Rohit had said during a promotional event in the US.

Gambhir will start his first assignment with the Indian team with the Sri Lanka tour. India are scheduled to play three T20Is and as many ODIs starting on July 27.

–IANS

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SKY has necessary qualities, fitness challenge for Hardik: Agarkar

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SKY has necessary qualities, fitness challenge for Hardik: Agarkar

SKY has necessary qualities, fitness challenge for Hardik: Agarkar

Mumbai, July 22 (IANS) Chief selector Ajit Agarkar has explained a reason behind chosing Suryakumar Yadav as India’s T20I captain over Hardik Pandya, saying the that SKY is one of the deserving candidates. He added fitness was one of the reason why Hardik was not considered for the role.

“He is one of the deserving candidates,” Agarkar told the reporters. “He is one of the best T20 batters in the world. We wanted a captain, who is likely to play all the games. We will see how he will do in two years,” he said.

Suryakumar, who is ranked No.2 in ICC Men’s T20I batting rankings, has captained the Mumbai team in the Indian domestic cricket circuit in all formats. He also led India to a 4-1 T20I win over Australia last November and then captained India to a 1-1 series draw in South Africa in December 2023.

The chief selector also said that Hardik is valuable for the side, adding that fitness has been a challenge over the past few years.

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“As far as Hardik is concerned, he is still a very important player. And that’s what we want him to be. Fitness has been a challenge for him over the last few years… Then it becomes difficult for the coach or selectors. I think, Surya has the necessary qualities to succeed as a captain,” he said.

Interestingly, Gill has been named the new T20I vice-captain for Sri Lanka tour ahead of Hardik, who held the role in the 2024 T20 World Cup triumph.

Hardik has led India in three ODIs and 16 T20Is, apart from leading the Gujarat Titans and Mumbai Indians in the IPL.

–IANS

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Chess Olympiad: Indian teams seeded second. Will there be a Gukesh-Liren clash?

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Chess Olympiad: Indian teams seeded second. Will there be a Gukesh-Liren clash?

Chess Olympiad: Indian teams seeded second. Will there be a Gukesh-Liren clash?

Chennai, July 22 (IANS) Will there be a clash between the World Chess Champion and Chinese Grandmaster (GM) Ding Liren of China and the title Challenger from India GM D.Gukesh at the Budapest Olympiad?

As per the details published by the noted chess portal chess-results.com Gukesh and Liren will be playing on the second board for India and Liren respectively in the Open category.

There are chances of both crossing swords at Budapest ahead of their title clash later this year in Singapore, if there is a match between India and China in the Olympiad.

Meanwhile, for the Olympiad the US team has been top seeded followed by India, China and Uzbekistan seeded second, third and fourth respectively as per chess-results.com.

The Indian team comprises of GMs Arjun Erigaisi (World No.4 Rating 2778), Gukesh (Rank 7, Rating 2763), R. Praggnanandhaa (Rank 8, Rating 2757), Vidit Santhosh Gujrathi (Rank 22, Rating 2720) and the reserve P. Harikrishna (Rank 37, Rating 2695).

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The team is headed by non-playing captain GM Srinath.

The US team includes GMs Fabiano Caruana (2796), Wesley So (2757), Levon Aronian (2729), Leinier Dominguez Perez (2748) and Ray Robson (2700), as per chess-results.com.

The players for the Chinese team are: GMs Wei Yi (2755), Liren (2745), Yu Yangyi (2720), Bu Xiangzhi (2697) and Wang Yue (2652), the chess portal lists out.

In the women’s category, Georgia are the top seed country followed by India, Poland and China as second, third and fourth seed, respectively.

The Indian Women’s team for the chess Olympiad will be GM D.Harika (Rank 11, Rating 2491), GM R.Vaishali (Rank 14, Rating 2488), International Master (IM) and Woman GM (WGM) Divya Deshmukh (Rank 20, Rating 2464), IM and WGM Vantika Agarwal (Rank 63, Rating 2390) and the reserve player IM and WGM Tania Sachdev (Rank 66, Rating 2386).

The Indian team’s non-playing captain is GM Abhijit Kunte.

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A total of 374 teams (Open 193,Women 181) will be fighting it out for the honours in the Olympiad.

The chess Olympiad will be held between September 10 – 22, 2024 i Budapest, Hungary.

–IANS

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Former NBA center Chris Silva joins Israeli club Bnei Herzliya

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Former NBA center Chris Silva joins Israeli club Bnei Herzliya

Former NBA center Chris Silva joins Israeli club Bnei Herzliya

Jerusalem, July 22 (IANS) Israeli Super League club Bnei Herzliya announced on Sunday the signing of former NBA player Chris Silva to a one-season contract.

The 27-year-old Gabonese center played college basketball in South Carolina, and between 2019 and 2023 played 70 NBA games, 64 of them with the Miami Heat. His NBA average stood at 2.8 points, 2.7 rebounds, and 0.5 assists per game.

In recent months he has played for the Piratas de Quebradillas and Mets de Guaynabo of Peurto Rico’s Baloncesto Superior Nacional league, reports Xinhua.

“Chris is a major signing for us,” said Herzliya head coach Yehu Orland. “He plays strong on both sides of the court and brings many qualities to help the team.”

–IANS

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