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SPORTS - June 2019

Jun 2019

Jun 30, 2019

Commonwealth Chess Championship

  •  In the absence of any quality opposition from overseas challengers, India appears set to make a clean sweep of medals in all 16 categories in the Commonwealth chess championship which started in New Delhi.
  • Top seed and a four-time winner Abhijeet Gupta would look to add to his tally. Ranked joint-ninth in the country, Abhijeet expects serious challenge from, among others S. L. Narayanan, National champion Aravindh Chithambaram, former champion M. R. Lalit Babu and several other Indian Grandmasters.
  • In a rare instance, the event features more GMs (12) and International Masters (11). In fact, two of the IMs, P. Iniyan and Swayams Mishra are awaiting confirmation of their GM titles. In all, there are 614 entries across all categories.
  • Among the leading ladies, Divya Deshmukh, 14, is the rating favourite, ahead of defending champion Tania Sachdev and fellow former Asian women champion Bhakti Kulkarni.
  • Women players play in the open section and the best three finishers make it to the podium. In all other categories, competitions are held separately in open and girls sections.
  • For the record, out of the 94 entries, India accounts for 83. The remaining 11 entries are from Bangladesh, Botswana, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, South Africa, Seychelles and Singapore. As usual, stronger Commonwealth nations, led by England, have stayed away.

Anand Draws with Aronian

  •  Viswanathan Anand stayed on the recovery-course after a 41-move draw with Levon Aronian in the third round of the Croatia Grand Chess Tour.
  • Anand, who suffered a surprise defeat against leader Ian Nepomniachtchi in the opening round, held World champion Magnus Carlsen in the second round.
  • Meanwhile, Nepomniachtchi continued his all-win sequence by beating Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in 32 moves in the only decisive battle of the day.
  • In the second round, too, Nepomniachtchi figured in the only decisive game after stopping Fabiano Caruana.

Jun 29, 2019

BFI Ties Up with IIS for Five Years

  •  The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) tied up with the Inspire Institute of Sport (IIS), the sports training institute in Karnataka which has Abhinav Bindra and Sourav Ganguly on its advisory board, to ensure state-of-the-art facilities for the pugilists.
  • As part of this five-year collaboration, the BFI would look to conduct camps as part of its high-performance training programme and IIS would play a key role in shaping the boxers as the official High-Performance Partner for the BFI.
  • The IIS would also provide national boxers access to sports science testing, strength and conditioning experts and professional diet and nutrition support.
  • The institute, which successfully hosted the senior National women's championships earlier in 2019, would also host one national level tournament during each year of the association.

Indian Women Create Rugby History

  •  The Indian women's rugby team scripted history by clinching their first-ever international 15s victory against a higher-ranked Singapore 21-19 for a bronze medal in the Asia Women's Div-1 Rugby 15s championship in the Philippines.
  • Five members of the victorious squad, Sumitra Nayak, Hupi Majhi, Rajani Sabar, Meerarani Hembram and Parbati Kisku were present in a media interaction held at the Press Council of India.
  • Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) promoted the girls to play competitive Rugby. Achyuta Samanta is the founder of the institute.

Jun 28, 2019

Dutee Pulls Out of Central Asian Events

  •  India's fastest woman, sprinter Dutee Chand, pulled out of the Kosanov Memorial at Almaty, Kazakhstan (July 6-7) and the Tatyana Kolpakova meet at Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (July13-14) as she wants to concentrate on the World University Games (WUG) in Napoli, Italy from July 3 to 14.
  • The Athletics Federation of India (AFI) selection committee selected a 27-member team, including Chand, for back-to-back exposure trips.
  • But the 23-year-old from Odisha, who was selected in 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay events, said that her focus was to compete at WUG and achieve qualification standard for the World Championships at Doha in September, 2019.

Vijender Singh Set for US Debut

  •  Indian boxing star Vijender Singh would make his debut in the US professional circuit in July, 2019 against local favourite Mike Snider in Newark, New Jersey.
  • Undefeated in his 10-bout pro career so far, the 33-year-old Indian was originally scheduled to have his first fight on US soil in April in Los Angeles but an injury sustained during a sparring session delayed it.
  • Vijender had signed up with Hall of Famer Bob Arum's Top Rank Promotions for his US stint. During his injury-forced break, Vijender returned to India and contested the Lok Sabha elections on a Congress ticket. He fought from the South Delhi constituency but could not win.

Fed Cup Gets Revamp

  •  The Fed Cup's existing format would be scrapped in 2020 when a 12-nation Finals week would be staged in Budapest in April, the International Tennis Federation confirmed.
  • The move follows a revamp of the men's Davis Cup which would culminate in an 18-nation event in Madrid in November, 2019.
  • At a news conference held at Queen's Club it was confirmed that Budapest would host the event until 2022.

Jun 27, 2019

India Submits Bid to Host 2023 IOC Session in Mumbai

  •  India proposed to host the 2023 International Olympic Committee session in Mumbai, which is expected to choose the host city for the 2030 Winter Olympics.
  • Indian Olympic Association President Narinder Batra and IOC member Nita Ambani submitted the formal bid to the IOC chief Thomas Back on the sidelines of the governing body's 134th session.

Jun 26, 2019

India's 63rd Grandmaster

  •  Girish A. Koushik took the long road there but finally arrived at the destination of his dreams.
  • The 22-year-old from Mysuru became India's 63rd Grandmaster at the 37th Balaton International Chess Festival in Hungary.
  • Girish had completed his second GM norm in Mallorca late in May 2019, and the third in Budapest the following week.
  • Only 11 Elo rating points separated him from the figure of 2500 (live), and he duly crossed the line in Balatonlelle.

England Openers Script World Cup History

  •  David Warner and Aaron Finch during their group stage encounter against England, the duo became the first opening pair to post five consecutive 50+ scores in World Cups.
  • Earlier, there were four opening pairs who had four consecutive 50+ scores to their name but with yet another 100-run stand at the Lord's, Finch and Warner were able to claim the impressive milestone.
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