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Sunday,20-June-2021

National

Injured wrestler Sumit Malik could be out of action for up to 3 weeks

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Olympic Games-bound wrestler Sumit Malik could be out of action for up to three weeks after his old knee injury resurfaced during the recent World Olympic qualifiers in Sofia.

Due to this reason, the 28-year-old wrestler gave a walkover to his opponent, Russia’s Sergei Kozyrev, in the final of the 125kg category in Sofia on Saturday night. He had won the Olympic quota place by entering the final.

Finalists in each weight category were allotted tickets to the Olympic Games, scheduled to be held in Tokyo from July 23.

“Since Malik is injured, he will not train up to three weeks. We hope he would recover from the knee injury by the first or, maybe, second week of June. It is important for him to recover fully as Olympics are around the corner,” coach Virender Singh told IANS.

“Since it was the last tournament to achieve an Olympic berth, he went all out to win. But after the semi-final, the pain got a bit unbearable, so he decided to not compete in the final,” he said.

According to Singh, Malik, the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games champion, had hurt his right knee during a training session in the first week of April.

Despite the knee pain, Malik had carried on during the Asian Olympic qualification tournament, held last month in Almaty.

“He managed to recover as there was a gap between the Asian and the World qualification tournaments. But now he will have to undergo proper rehabilitation ahead of the Olympics,” said Singh.

The Wrestling Federation of India had picked a 12-member team, including six in men’s Greco-Roman, for the four-day World Olympic qualifiers.

Only two Indian wrestlers won Olympic quota places in Sofia; Seema Bisla was the other. She won an Olympic quota place in 50kg freestyle event after entering the final. Her opponent, Lucia Yamileth Yepez Gugman of Ecuador, pulled out of the final due to injury.

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National

Andhra Pradesh CM condoles Milkha Singh’s demise

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Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy on Saturday expressed his grief over the demise of Milkha Singh, former Indian track and field sprinter.

“Milkha Singh has been an inspiration to many young athletes and will continue to remain so,” said Reddy about Singh, who was popularly known as the ‘Flying Sikh’.

The Chief Minister recalled that Singh took India to Olympic glory with his achievements as a track and field star.

Reddy conveyed his condolences to the bereaved family members.

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Bollywood

Farhan Akhtar mourns Milkha Singh’s death: You represented a dream

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Actor Farhan Akhtar, who played Milkha Singh in the film “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”, has mourned the death of the legendary Indian athlete, who passed away aged 91 after a long battle with Covid-19.

Farhan posted a picture on Instagram posing with Milkha, who was popularly known as the ‘Flying Sikh’.

The actor penned a note saying that he refuses to accept that Milkha Singh is no more.

Farhan wrote: “Dearest Milkha ji, A part of me is still refusing to accept that you are no more. Maybe it’s the stubborn side I inherited from you.. the side that when it sets it’s mind on something, just never gives up.

“And the truth is that you will always be alive. Because you were more than a large hearted, loving, warm, down to earth man. You represented an idea. You represented a dream. You represented (to use your own words) how hard work, honesty and determination can lift a person off his knees and get him to touch the sky. “

Farhan said that the legendary athlete touched everyone’s lives.

“For those who knew you as a father and a friend, it was a blessing. For those who didn’t, your story was a constant source of inspiration and a reminder of humility in success. I love you with all my heart,” he concluded.

Directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag”, biographical sports drama is based on the life of Milkha Singh.

Milkha Singh passed away in a local hospital in Chandigarh at 11.30 p.m. on Friday, read a statement from the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education & Research (PGIMER), where he was being treated for Covid-related complications.

He is survived by a son, ace golfer Jeev Milkha Singh, and three daughters.

Six days ago, on June 13, Milkha’s wife Nirmal passed away.

A former India volleyball captain, she was 85, and she, too, was affected by Covid and related complications.

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National

India should have had a fast-bowling all-rounder in playing XI: Amit Mishra

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Veteran leg-spinner and a member of the Indian Premier League (IPL) side Delhi Capitals, Amit Mishra feels that while the India playing XI for the World Test Championship (WTC) final against New Zealand “looks great”, a fast-bowling all-rounder could have further strengthened the side.

The first day of the WTC final at Ageas Bowl in Southampton on Friday was washed out because of rain and players would be hoping to get back to action later on Saturday.

“The playing XI looks great. We have Ravindra Jadeja and Ravichandran Ashwin, two excellent spinners who can also contribute with the bat. Ashwin and Jadeja’s batting skills will help India a lot. I think India could have named a fast-bowling all-rounder in the playing XI, someone who could have bowled six-seven overs when the regular pacers are tired and the ball is swinging,” Mishra told JK 24×7 news.

Noting that the Kane Williamson-led New Zealand had an advantage in this department, Mishra, who has played 22 Tests and taken 76 wickets, said, “I think it would have been better if India included a fast-bowling all-rounder. New Zealand have a fast-bowling all-rounder in their squad, so this is the one advantage that the Blackcaps have.”

Indian are fielding two spinners — Ashwin and Jadeja — and the pace trio of Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah in the WTC final.

Mishra also said that India’s batting was stronger than its bowling.

“I think India’s batting line-up is stronger than the bowling unit. If you consider the all-rounders, we bat very deep. Only the three fast bowlers do not bat. So, I feel the batting is stronger.”

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