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SPORTS - February 2020

Feb 2020

Feb 28, 2020

India First to Seal Semi-finals Spot

  • Teenage prodigy Shafali Verma helped India earn a nail-biting win over New Zealand and reach the women's T20 World Cup semi-finals, as defending champions Australia inched closer to joining them.
  • New Zealand won the toss at Melbourne's Junction Oval and opted to bowl, restricting India to 133/6 after 16-year-old Verma gave them a strong start with three sixes and four fours in a quickfire 46.
  • But New Zealand failed with the bat, narrowly missing their target despite a swashbuckling late charge by Amelia Kerr, leaving them on 129/6.

Feb 27, 2020

Maria Sharapova Retires

  • Five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova said goodbye to tennis at the age of 32.
  • The Russian won her first Grand Slam at Wimbledon in 2004 aged 17 and completed the career slam - all four major titles - by winning the French Open in 2012.
  • In 2016, she served a 15-month ban after testing positive for meldonium.
  • She has been dealing with problems in her right shoulder for years and lost the last four matches she played at major tournaments.
  • Sharapova reached No. 1 in 2005, the year before she won her second major trophy at Flushing Meadows. She added an Australian Open title in 2008, and then won the French Open in 2012 and 2014.

Feb 26, 2020

Teenager Kashvee Gautam Scalps All 10 Wickets

  • Kashvee Gautam, a 16-year-old medium-pacer from Chandigarh, became the first Indian woman cricketer to take 10 wickets in an innings in a BCCI domestic tournament.
  • Kashvee achieved the feat, which included a hat-trick, against Arunachal Pradesh in the BCCI Women's U-19 one- day tournament at Kadapa, Andhra Pradesh.
  • It was not till the age of 13 that Kashvee joined formal training under coach Nagesh Gupta at Government Model Senior Secondary School.
  • The teenager, who had earlier played for Punjab at the U-14, U-16 and U-19 levels, made the switch to Chandigarh this season and has taken a total of 63 wickets in U-23 and U-19 cricket. She had taken a hat-trick against Arunachal Pradesh in BCCI U-23 T20 Trophy too. Six of her wickets were LBWs while the other four were bowled.

Tsitsipas Defends Marseille Trophy

  • Stefanos Tsitsipas successfully defended his Marseille title today with a straightforward victory over Canadian teenager Felix Auger-Aliassime.
  • Greek star Tsitsipas eased to a 6-3 6-4 win to leave Auger-Aliassime still waiting for his maiden ATP title after his fifth consecutive final defeat. Tsitsipas, who had arrived in southern France with a 3-4 losing record this season, enjoyed an emphatic return to form as he clinched his fifth ATP trophy.

Kohli, Pant, Shami in Asia Squad for Mujib Centenary T20Is

  • India skipper Virat Kohli was named in the Asia XI squad, also featuring Rishabh Pant and Mohammed Shami, to take on a World XI side in a two-match T20 series to celebrate the birth centenary of Bangladesh's founder Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Kohli was named by the Bangladesh Cricket Board for one match subject to availability, which is yet to be confirmed by the BCCI. The two matches are scheduled to be held on March 21 and 22. The World XI includes former South African captain Faf du Plessis and veteran big-hitters Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard. The Asia XI features four Bangladeshi players in Mustafizur Rehman, Tamim Iqbal, Mushfiqur Rahim and Liton Das.

Feb 25, 2020

Young Indian Grand Master D. Gukesh wins Title at 34th Cannes Open Chess

  • The 13-year old Young Indian Grandmaster (GM) Dommaraju Gukesh emerged as champion in the 34th Cannes Open chess tournament held at Cannes, France by beating Harutyun Bargeshyan from France in the final round and secured a total of 7.5 points.
  • Tamil Nadu based Gukesh became the world's second youngest Grandmaster in 2019 and he beat Bargeshyan in 50 moves.
  • Chongsheng Zeng from China took 2nd place, after Gukesh other Indian players Siva Mahadevan and G. B. Harshavardhan took 10th place and 18th place, respectively in the Cannes Open.

India to Host Commonwealth Shooting and Archery Competitions

  • India will host the Commonwealth shooting and archery championships in January 2022 and the medals from the two events will be counted for "ranking of competing nations" at the Birmingham Games.
  • However the medals will be added to the final tally one week after the conclusion of the Games.
  • The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) announced the decision after its Executive Board meeting held in February 2020.
  • The decision can be considered a big win for India after it threatened to boycott the 2022 Birmingham Games for dropping shooting from the roster.
  • "A Commonwealth Archery and Shooting Championships is set to take place in India in 2022 after a proposal to stage the event was approved by the CGF Executive Board," the CGF said in a release.
  • The two events will be held in Chandigarh in January 2022 while the Birmingham Commonwealth Games is scheduled from July 27 to August 7, 2022.
  • "The decision confirmed that Chandigarh 2022 and Birmingham 2022 will be two separately organised and funded Commonwealth Sport events.

Feb 24, 2020

Taylor First Player to Play 100 Matches in All Formats

  • Veteran New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor made history when he took the field against India in the opening Test as he became the first player to play 100 matches in all three formats of the game.
  • The 35-year-old played his 100th T20 International against India last month. He has also played 231 ODIs for New Zealand.

Yulimar Rojas Sets New Indoor Triple Jump World Record

  • Venezuela's Yulimar Rojas claimed a new world indoor triple jump record at the final World Indoor Tour event of the season in Madrid.
  • The 24-year-old double world champion recorded 15.43 m with her sixth and final attempt.
  • It eclipsed Russian Tatyana Lebedeva's previous landmark from 2004 by 7 centimetres.
  • The outdoor record stands at 15.50 m, set by Ukraine's Inessa Kravets in Gothenburg in 1995.
  • Rojas secured a South American indoor record of 15.03 m in Metz earlier this month in her first triple jump competition of the year.
  • Madrid is a successful venue for her, having been the scene of her first outdoor 15 m leap in 2016 as well as four of her indoor personal best performances.

Rowing Federation of India Re-elects Rajalaxmi as President

  • Rajalaxmi Singh Deo was re-elected as the president of the Rowing Federation of India (RFI) after the successful conclusion of the elections.
  • Rajpal Singh, G. Bhasker, Souvik Ghose, and Sreekunara Kurup were elected as vice-presidents.
  • M. V. Sriram was voted as secretary-general of the RFI while Krishna Kumar Singh and Chirajit Dhukan were chosen as joint-secretaries of the federation.
  • The post of the treausurer was won by Nababudin Ahmed. Jasbir Singh, Venkateshwara Rao, Ismail Baig, Jacob, and Manjunatha were elected as the executive committee members.
  • The winning candidates would remain at the post for four years till 2024.
  • The elections were conducted under the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) observer K. Govindraj.
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