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Mukesh Choudhary, Simarjeet Singh’s bowling heartening, says CSK coach Fleming



With the IPL 2022 season done and dusted for Chennai Super Kings, albeit prematurely, the team has hit the ‘experimentation mode’ and their chief coach Stephen Fleming is quite satisfied with the way the young bowlers are shaping up for the upcoming seasons.

On Thursday, defending a meagre 97 against Mumbai Indians — another team that has failed to live up to its billing this season — CSK gave the new ball to Mukesh Choudhary and Simarjeet Singh. Mukesh, the 25-year-old left-arm pacer from Bhilwara, Rajasthan, made an immediate impact with the new ball, taking three wickets for 23 runs in his four overs, while Simarjeet, the 24-year-old pacer from Delhi, took the wicket of Rohit Sharma and bowled a tidy four overs.

Fleming said he saw this as a positive sign for the franchise going forward.

“There are some really positive signs. I thought the new ball bowling from Simarjeet and Mukesh was outstanding. They have been developing, Mukesh all the way through the season, and for him to feel confident enough to bowl a spell like that and Simarjeet in four games and they have made some good gain. So, that is a positive with Deepak Chahar to come back into the side. They are some good options with the new ball.”

Pace bowler Chahar has not been able to play a single match for CSK this season because of the injury he sustained at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru while rehabilitating.

“I thought it was really impressive. They really gave us an opportunity and both of them bowled well. Mukesh in particular had the ball really swinging well and Simarjeet has got some deceptive pace, so we are really positive about that pairing going forward. It is just disappointing that we did not have more runs to play with, but out of the ashes came those two. So, it was a good way to look at it,” Fleming said.

“We are not far away, but we have got a couple of holes that seem to pop up at the wrong time. We are not as good as we need to be, we know that. We try to find some positive pieces when we move forward. Now that we are out of the competition, we have got an opportunity with two games to give some other guys an opportunity and hope we find something there as well.”

The head coach added that he was surprised by the way the pitch behaved.

“I think it took us by surprise, it looked very good at the start. And, we were never able to get any partnerships. We just seemed to nick everything down the leg side with no DRS, we didn’t get any momentum to post a score. We did get some assistance in the second innings with the ball, so I would say the expectations were of a high-scoring game and as it turned out, a score of 140 or 150 might have been competitive. So, we were a little surprised by the assistance that was on offer.

“Yes, we have got some work to do. We are really positive about the next two games to see if some guys will take the opportunity, which they will get and we just have to finish in the same way. Keep looking for the positives for the next season. We are still learning about our squad like most teams are, and hopefully we can learn over the next couple of games, and what I can say is there’s not much margin between having a great season and a not so great season. We’ve been through enough of these seasons to know that. We’re not going to tune too much over, but we do need to improve in some areas.”

Fleming said Super Kings were unlucky as there was no DRS in the initial stages of the match, but said it was a part of the game.

“It was a little bit unlucky that it happened at that time, yeah we are a little bit disappointed but it is a part of the game. A chain of events that were not in our favour but we should be better than that. It certainly was not a great start.”


‘I’m happy here’: Cristiano Ronaldo pledges to continue at Al Nassr in Saudi Pro League




Portugese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo has vowed to continue at Al Nassr in Saudi Arabia despite walking away empty handed in this season. The 38-year-old has earmarked the tournament to be among the top five in the world.

Ronaldo, who signed a two and a half year contract with Al Nassr, scored 14 goals in 16 games in the season, with his side standing second behind Al Ittihad in the Saudi Pro league. However, there were speculations about how long will he stay as reports of swap deal with Saudi-owned Newcastle United emerged, who have now qualified for next season’s Champions league.

In an official Saudi Pro League interview, the star footballer revealed:

“I’m happy here, I want to continue here, I will continue here. And in my opinion, if they continue to do the work that they want to do here, for the next five years, I think the Saudi league can be a top five league in the world. I expected to win something this year, but we didn’t, but next year I’m really positive, but next year I’m really positive and confident that things will change and we go in a better way.”

Cristiano Ronaldo suggests he is still adjusting to strange training timings in Saudi Arabia:

Ronaldo also revealed how contrasting the training timings in Europe and Saudi Arabia are, elaborating:

“In Europe, we train more in the morning, but here we train in the afternoon or evening and in Ramadan, we train at 10 at night. So this is strange but as I tell you, these situations are part of an experience, memories. I like to live these moments because you learn with these things.”

With 837 goals in 512 games, Ronaldo is the combined highest goal scorer in history.

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Lionel Messi to leave PSG at the end of the season, confirms club manager Christophe Galtier




Paris Saint Germain superstar Lionel Messi will leave the club at the end of the current season, manager Christophe Galtier confirmed on Thursday. Messi made 74 appearances for PSG in which he scored 32 goals and made 35 assists. In Ligue 1, Paris Saint-Germain has played 37 matches out of which they have won 27, lost six and drew four.

PSG had acquired Messi’s services two years ago in a record transfer deal after he left FC Barcelona in 2021.

Messi, who’s contract with PSG ends this season, is now being linked with with a move to Saudi Arabia while talk of a return to the Nou Camp has picked up in Spain in recent weeks.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner will play his final match for PSG against Clermont Foot on Saturday.

“I had the privilege of coaching the best player in the history of football,” Galtier said on Thursday. “This will be his last match at the Parc des Princes, and I hope that he will receive the warmest of welcomes.”

Messi’s envious record

In the Spanish La Liga football competition, Lionel Messi has scored 474 goals in 520 matches. In the French Ligue 1, Messi has scored 22 goals in 57 matches.

The 35-year-old while playing for Football Club Barcelona has scored 672 goals in 778 games. While playing for Paris Saint-Germain he has scored 32 goals in 74 matches.

No plan to bring Messi back: Barca president

FC Barcelona President Joan Laporta recently said that the club has re-established good relationships with Argentine legend Lionel Messi, but it would not pay any price to bring him back to the Camp Nou Stadium.

“I have spoken with Leo to somehow redirect the situation that occurred when I had to put the institution ahead of everything, including him, the best player in the world,” said Laporta in a Monday morning TV show.

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Protesting wrestlers to discard their medals in Ganga river today at 6pm, sit on hunger strike at India Gate




The protesting wrestlers demanding the arrest of Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief Brij Bhushan Singh over sexual allegations have threatened to discard their coveted medals in Ganga river in Haridwar on Tuesday at 6 pm. Their announcement came as the Delhi Police cleared all the signs of the wrestlers’ month-long protest.

The likes of Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Poghat, and Satyawart Kadian have been protesting for over a month, asking for Brij Bhushan Singh’s arrest over sexual allegations of female athletes, including a minor. On May 28th, all the wrestlers suffered ill treatment from the police officials as they were dragged relentlessly, prompting an outrage among social media users over the behaviour towards the athletes.

On the same day, the police officials entered the wrestlers’ tents at Jantar Mantar in Delhi to destroy them. Sakshi Malik, an Olympic Bronze medalist and one of the protestors condemned it by posting a clip on Twitter. She wrote on Twitter, stating ‘After arresting all the wrestlers and old people, the cops have started to destroy our march. Our things have been started lifting. What kind of hooliganism is this?’

Hence, Malik, on Tuesday, issued a lengthy statement on Twitter in Hindi, announcing to dispose of their medals in Ganga river. ‘These medals are our lives, our souls. There would be no reason to live after throwing them in the Ganga today. So, we will stage a hunger strike until death at India Gate after that.’

While Malik has an Olympic bronze medal won in 2016, wrestler Vinesh Poghat has two commonwealth golds, one Asian Games gold medal. She was also crowned Asian Champion in 2021 and won the World Championships Bronze in 2021. Meanwhile, Bajrang Punia won a bronze in the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. He also went on to win bronze in 2013, silver in 2018, and bronze in 2019.

Police officials blocked the wrestlers’ march towards the parliament on Sunday:

On the day of the new Parliament building’s opening, the protest produced devastating images as Delhi Police cracked down on them in the middle of their march.

Hundreds of police officers and paramilitary people obstructed the wrestlers’ protest march as they attempted to progress towards the new Parliament House. A violent altercation between wrestlers and police officers occurred as the demonstrators attempted to break through the security perimeter.

Leading members of the opposition, such as Rahul Gandhi of the Congress, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Arvind Kejriwal of Delhi, and Mamata Banerjee of West Bengal, have criticised the central government for staying mum over Brij Bhushan Singh.

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