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Saturday,08-May-2021

National

Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Rajeshwari, Punam in ICC shortlist

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Fast bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar from India’s men’s team and spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad and batter Punam Raut from the women’s team have been nominated for the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Player of the Month award.

Bhuvneshwar played three ODIs against England in which he took six wickets with an economy rate of 4.65. He also went on to play five T20Is against them where he took 4 wickets with an economy rate of 6.38. He was the standout bowler on either side in the white ball series between India and England.

Rajeshwari played five ODIs against South Africa and was their leading wicket-taker in both the white ball series with South Africa. She took eight wickets with an economy rate of 3.56 in the ODIs and in the three T20Is against the same opponent she took four wickets with an economy rate of 4.75.

Punam played five ODIs against South Africa where she scored 263 runs at 87.66 with a strike rate of 71.66. Punam was India’s top run-scorer in the ODI series against South Africa, scoring a century and two half-centuries in these games.

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1980 Olympic hockey gold medallist Ravindra Pal passes away

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Former hockey centre-half Ravindra Pal Singh, a member of India’s gold medal-winning team of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games, passed away early on Saturday morning here. He was 62.

Singh, a bachelor who lived with his elder sister in a joint family, had recovered from Covid-19. He had a breathing problem, and ‘felt depressed’, and had anxiety. He was shifted to an oxygen bed in a ward after having recovered from Covid, though he continued to have the breathing problem. After his condition deteriorated on Friday, he was taken to the Intensive Care Unit and put on a ventilator. He passed away early on Saturday.

“We changed a few hospitals for him, as in the other private hospitals even the doctors were careless and they didn’t provide him proper care. Finally, we admitted him to Vivekanada Polyclinic, which we trusted,” said a member of Singh’s family.

Besides plating in the 1980 Moscow and 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, Singh appeared in several top international tournaments, including the Champions Trophy in Karachi (1980 and 1983), the Silver Jubilee 10-Nation Cup (Hong Kong, 1983), World Cup (Mumbai, 1982), Asia Cup (Karachi, 1982), the 1981 India-Pakistan Test series, and the Malaysian Quadrangular series in 1980.

Singh began his international career in 1979. He was picked in the Junior Indian team for the World Cup.

Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju condoled Singh’s death.

“I’m deeply saddened to learn that Shri Ravinder Pal Singh ji has lost the battle to Covid-19. With his passing away, India loses a golden member of the hockey team that won gold in the 1980 Moscow Olympics. His contribution to Indian sports will always be remembered,” he tweeted.

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Bollywood

Anushka Sharma and Virat start Covid fundraiser, contribute Rs 2cr

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Celebrity couple Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli have started a fundraiser campaign to help people deal with the Covid crises at hand.

The couple has collaborated with crowd-funding platform Ketto for the campaign #InThisTogether and has donated Rs 2 crore for this initiative. They aim to raise 7 crore for Covid relief in India

Talking about the same, Anushka said: “India is going through an extremely difficult time and the second wave of the deadly Covid-19 pandemic has pushed our country to a state of crisis. It is time for all of us to come together and do our bit for our fellow countrymen who are in serious need of support.

“Virat and I have been hugely pained looking at the inexplicable suffering that people are going through and we hope that this fund will aid in our fight against the virus that we are all helplessly witnessing. We are praying for everyone’s safety. We hope that you join us in our prayers to save as many lives as possible because we are all in this together.”

Virat said: “We are going through an unprecedented time in the history of our country and our nation needs all of us to unite and save as many people as possible. Anushka and I have been shocked to see humans suffering since last year. We have been working towards helping as many people as possible all through the pandemic and now, India wants our support more than ever.

“We are starting this fundraiser with the confidence that we will be able to raise substantial funds to aid those in dire need. We are confident that people will come forward to support fellow countrymen in crisis. We are in this together and we shall overcome this.”

#InThisTogether will run for seven days and the proceeds raised will be directed to ACT Grants, the implementation partner for this campaign.

“Having strong voices like Anushka and Virat help drive fundraising efforts will go a long way towards helping us realise this goal. On behalf of India’s startup ecosystem, ACT Grants is truly grateful to have them join this mission,” said Gayatri Yadav, spokesperson ACT Grants.

“We are delighted to collaborate with Virat Kholi and Anuskha Sharma for their philanthropic endeavour to support our Covid relief programme,” said Varun Sheth, CEO & co-founder, Ketto.org.

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National

Difficult to say how IPL 2021 bio-bubble was breached: Sourav Ganguly

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Indian cricket board president Sourav Ganguly said that it is difficult to say how the Indian Premier League’s (IPL) bio-bubble was breached and the report that the board got had shown that there was no breach.

The 2021 IPL was postponed this week after multiple Covid-19 cases emerged within the tournament’s bio-bubbles in Ahmedabad and New Delhi.

“The report we got is that there’s no breach of the bubble. How it happened is very difficult to say. How so many people are getting (infected) in the country is also very difficult to say,” Ganguly told Indian Express.

Ganguly said that “it is too early to say” whether there is a window available to resume the season. He also said that while there was a discussion to host the tournament in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) decided to hold it in India as there were hardly any Covid-19 cases in the country.

“It was discussed, but the (COVID-19 cases) in India in February was (virtually) nothing. It has just gone through the roof in the last three weeks. Before that it was nothing. We discussed about the UAE but then decided to do it in India,” he said.

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