Sports en Wed May 20 12:29:59 IST 2020 will-t20-wc-in-oct-nov-make-way-for-ipl <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>BCCI apex council member Anshuman Gaekwad on Wednesday said this year's T20 World Cup seems unlikely to go ahead, making space for the currently suspended IPL on the calendar depending on the COVID-19 situation in India.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The former India coach said cricketers will have to gather all their mental strength to deal with the uncertainty that the pandemic has caused.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"I have my doubts that T20 WC will be held this year. About IPL, we cannot think of just now. It will depend on Indian conditions and the window is only during this T20 WC which is October-November," Gaekwad told 'PTI-Bhasha'.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"If the World Cup gets cancelled or postponed, then only IPL can happen but then also it depends on what the conditions are in India," he said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Gaekwad feels that it will be completely new life once the virus is tamed and players have to be mentally strong to adapt.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The virus has infected more than 50 lakh people across the world and over 3.25 lakh have died. In India, the case tally has crossed one lakh and as many as 3,303 people have died from the disease.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Cricket is not going to be the same, the approach would be different. There will be no crowd in the stadiums. Cricketers are not used to playing in empty stadiums.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"It will be one very difficult aspect of playing new type of cricket, "Gaekwad said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>He also said that cricket might resume after at least four months.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"It may take another two months or four months or more to resume cricket. It is not theory that you can read and write. You have to perform, so nothing is going to be easy," he said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"If you are not mentally strong, it will not be easy," added the former player who has played 40 Tests and 15 ODIs for India.</p> Wed May 20 18:33:36 IST 2020 international-hockey-can-resume-only-after-covid-vaccine-is-developed-fih <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>International hockey will be played only after a vaccine is developed to cure the deadly coronavirus, the FIH has announced as the world governing body revealed a five-stage process, devised for resumption of the game at different levels.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The International Hockey Federation (FIH) believes global competition among its member countries will be possible only during the last stage of the process, the timeline of which cannot be set.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"These are very early days when it comes to a return to action but, within its guidance FIH has produced a five stage process showing the route back to something resembling normality. This starts, as has been seen in the Netherlands and Belgium, with a return to carefully managed training, still with social distancing measures in place," the FIH said in a statement.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"The next stage will be a resumption of regional competition, followed by local travel between neighbouring nations. Trans-Continental competition will follow and, finally, once a vaccine is in place, it is hoped there will be a return to normal competition."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"There is no time scale for these stages to be reached and it will vary from country to country."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>FIH said when competition does resume, organisers will need to be hugely conscious of safety measures that will need to be implemented, in order to keep the hockey workforce and the fans safe.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The document will help and support Continental Federations, National Associations and clubs in their efforts to make a headway towards resuming some sort of training activities.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"The guidelines, which are aligned to those issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO), cover the entire hockey workforce—athletes, coaches, officials, staff, administrators and volunteers. Along with a risk assessment chart to which all hockey organisations are advised to adhere, there are also guidelines for organisers of international events once there is a return to international competition," the FIH said.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Just like other sports, international hockey has come to a standstill because of the global pandemic, forcing the FIH to extend the second season of the FIH Hockey Pro League, which involves considerable international travel for competing nations, through to June 2021.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Hockey, as a team sport, with contact, is seen as a higher risk activity and so is subject to higher levels of control and restriction."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The Health and Safety guidelines of the FIH also includes a risk assessment – produced by Dr Sean Carmody, a doctor of sports medicine at Manchester Metropolitan University.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Prior to resuming any activity, all hockey organisations should carry out an assessment based on Carmody's risk assessment chart," the world body advised.&nbsp;</p> Wed May 20 18:13:57 IST 2020 isl-sandesh-jhingan-kerala-blasters-likely-to-part-ways <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>It's turning out to be a season of surprises for Kerala Blasters fans.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The Indian Super League side has been undergoing <a title="Sacked Kerala Blasters coach Schattorie had 'sensed major structural overhaul'" href="">a major structural overhaul</a> since finishing seventh on the 10-team table with 19 points from 18 matches, last season.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>First, Kerala Blasters appointed Karolis Skynkis as sporting director. Soon after, the Lithuanian convinced former Mohun Bagan coach <a title="Kerala Blasters officially appoint Kibu Vicuna as head coach" href="">Kibu Vicuna to take over as the head coach, replacing Eelco Schattorie</a>. Vicuna, who had led Mohun Bagan to the I-League title in the 2019-20 season, will be ninth coach for the Blasters.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Schattorie had emphasised that he needs a few years to build a strong team and his plans were severely affected by the spate of injuries, including the one to the team's defence mainstay, Sandesh Jhingan. Fans had been quite vocal in giving the Dutchman another chance, but the club went ahead with the change.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>And now, Jhingan, too, is on the way out. It has been learnt that the India defender and fan-favourite player is keen on greener pastures, though neither Jhingan nor the club have confirmed the development officially.&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>According to club sources, Jhingan and the Blasters mutually agreed to part ways ahead of the upcoming ISL season. “Yes, Sandesh is no longer with the club. It was under mutual agreement,” a source told PTI.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Jhingan still has two years left in his contract. Reports say that he is in talks with foreign clubs.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The Blasters have, reportedly, asked many of the players to take a paycut owing to financial constraints.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><b><a title="Sandesh Jhingan set to become an author!" href="">ALSO READ:&nbsp;Sandesh Jhingan set to become an author!</a></b></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The 26-year-old has been with Kerala Blasters since the inception of the ISL in 2014. He won the 'Emerging Player of the Year' award in the inaugural season. He holds the record of maximum appearances for the Blasters—76.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Jhingan had suffered an ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury just before the ISL 2019-20 began and had missed the entire season. He was supposed to make a comeback to the India side, <a title="Fit-again Jhingan, Jeje called up for 18-day national football camp" href="">at the national football camp in March</a>. But the COVID-19 pandemic messed up the sports calendar worldwide.</p> Wed May 20 19:10:08 IST 2020 watch-virat-kohli-imitates-a-dinosaur-on-the-loose <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>The lockdown has brought out the fun side of many a celebrity. Sportspersons including Australia’s <a title="David Warner" href="">David Warner</a> and India’s own <a title="Shikhar Dhawan " href="">Shikhar Dhawan</a> have posted hilarious videos of how they spend time with their families, doing fun activities.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>India skipper is not far behind as evident from a video posted by his wife and Bollywood actor-producer <a title="Anushka Sharma" href="">Anushka Sharma</a>. The <i>Pari</i> actor recently took to Instagram to show a “dinosaur on the loose”—her husband teetering into the frame, imitating a dinosaur and walking away, but not before letting out a “roar” that sounded more like a honk!</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“I spotted .... A Dinosaur on the loose,” Anushka captioned the video.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>WATCH it here:</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, with sporting activity suspended worldwide and the IPL postponed indefinitely because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Indian skipper is keeping himself busy with fitness regimes and Instagram Live sessions with fellow cricketers. He and other cricketers have taken this time to share anecdotes and interesting incidents from the past, entertaining and enlightening their fans at the same time.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In the meantime, Anushka’s web series <i>Paatal Lok</i>, which she produced, has been released on Amazon Prime Video. Virat Kohli, in his review, said that the series was “gripping”.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><i>Paatal Lok</i>&nbsp;is about a police inspector and the investigation into a case after four people are arrested for allegedly attempting to murder a primetime journalist. The series features actors Jaideep Ahlawat, Neeraj Kabi, Abhishek Banerjee and others.</p> Wed May 20 18:05:54 IST 2020 six-premier-league-players-tested-positive-for-covid-19 <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>Burnley assistant manager Ian Woan was named as one of six individuals at three Premier League clubs to have tested positive for the coronavirus. The results came after the Premier League announced earlier on Tuesday that it had tested a total of 748 players and club staff for COVID-19 on Sunday and Monday.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Premier League officials did not name the individuals concerned but a Burnley statement said: "Burnley Football Club can confirm that after completing a COVID-19 test on Sunday, 17th May, assistant manager Ian Woan has tested positive."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"In line with strict Premier League requirements and following a positive test, Ian will now self-isolate for a period of seven days, with a view to being tested again week commencing Monday, 25th May.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Ian is asymptomatic and is currently safe and well at home. He will remain in close communication with club personnel regarding his re-engagement in training once he is clear of the virus."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Premier League clubs began returning to training in small groups on Tuesday after protocols on safety measures were signed off on Monday. Brighton have previously confirmed three positive cases among their squad at different stages of the pandemic, while positive tests for Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta and Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi played a major role in the decision to suspend matches on March 13.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The number of positive cases represents just 0.8 per cent of those tested and is consistent with similar widespread testing conducted by other major leagues hoping to complete the season.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Germany's top two divisions registered 10 positive cases out of 1,724 tests two weeks ago ahead of their return to action last weekend.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Five players from Spain's top two divisions tested positive last week before La Liga's return to group training.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Premier League clubs are aiming for a return to action by the middle of next month, but face resistence from players concerned over their welfare.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Watford captain Troy Deeney has said he will not return to training this week due to fears he could pass the virus on to his five-month-old son.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"I can't get a haircut until mid-July, but I can go and get in a box with 19 people and jump for a header," said Deeney on the Talk The Talk podcast.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"I don't know how that works. No one could answer the questions, not because they didn't want to, but because they don't know the information."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Newcastle left-back Danny Rose claimed players were being treated like "guinea pigs or lab rats".</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Rose's manager Steve Bruce said the majority of his players are in favour of a return to training and praised "meticulous" planning on behalf of the Premier League to make the environment as safe as possible.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>However, Bruce has also questioned the limited preparation time players could have between returning to contact training and competitive matches, warning his squad could "fall down like a pack of cards" with injuries.</p> Wed May 20 17:24:32 IST 2020 hockey-teams-to-stay-at-sai-centre-despite-covid-19-related-death <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>Hockey India on Wednesday ruled out shifting the Olympics-bound men's and women's hockey teams from the <a title="Despite MHA order, the wait to resume training continues for athletes" href="">Sports Authority of India's Bengaluru centre</a> despite the death of a cook who was employed there from coronavirus. Hockey India said the cook had no access to the players.</p> <p>The cook died of cardiac arrest and later tested positive for COVID-19, according to a top official, who said there was no reason to panic as the deceased had no access to the players' accommodation zone.</p> <p>"The question of moving out the teams from Bengaluru doesn't arise because it's the best facility in the country," HI CEO Elena Norman told <i>PTI</i>. "Even if we think of such a move, it is practically impossible because of the nationwide lockdown."</p> <p>A top SAI official said that the cook had not gone beyond the gate area since March 10.</p> <p>"A cook, part of around 60 employees, who were asked to stay at home since March 10 because of their old age, died of cardiac arrest at a hospital," the official told <i>PTI</i>.</p> <p>"He went to the hospital for the birth of a child of one of his relatives and had a cardiac arrest there and died. As part of the protocol, he was tested for COVID-19 and his reports came out positive,” the official said.</p> <p>“The campus is divided into three sections—Gate area, Sector-A and Sector-B. The players stay in the last part, Sector-B, so they are completely safe and are already living a quarantined life for the last 2 months," he added.</p> <p>The SAI official rejected reports that the deceased cook attended a meeting inside the SAI campus on last Friday.</p> <p>"He was staying outside the campus for the past 65 days," he said.</p> <p>"Our campus went into lockdown on March 10 before the nationwide lockdown was announced. The cook last visited the campus on March 15 but he was confined to the Gate area and was not allowed in. But still as a precaution, we have put 4-5 people, like guards, the remotest person who might have come in contact with him, into quarantine," the official added.</p> Wed May 20 12:30:34 IST 2020 manchester-united-ask-fans-to-stay-away-if-premier-league-restar <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>Manchester United have urged fans to stay away if the Premier League restarts and matches are played behind closed doors amid the COVID-19 pandemic.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The club is due to return to training in small groups, while practising physical distancing, from Wednesday.&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Manchester United wrote in an e-mail to season-ticket holders that they expect fans’ co-operation in this time, asking them not to travel to stadiums on match days.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“We share your disappointment that you will not be able to watch United in person from within the stadium, but we would encourage you to give your continued loyal support from the comfort and safety of your home,” it read.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“To help with that, the Premier League and their media partners will work to deliver the very best broadcast coverage of our games.”</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“By supporting from home and following government guidance, you will be playing your part to keep your friends, your family and all United fans safe. This united effort to stay at home will give us the best chance of protecting the health of everyone in our community.”&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Manchester United have also confirmed that season-ticket holders will be given a refund on the remaining home games. If the Premier League decided not to have matches at neutral venues, United will have four matches at Old Trafford.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>There are 92 matches to be played before the season was suspended due to the pandemic. All matches will have to be played behind closed doors, that is without the presence of fans in empty stadiums. The Premier League clubs are hoping for the matches to restart by mid-June.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Tue May 19 22:15:07 IST 2020 umar-akmal-challenges-his-three-year-corruption-ban <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>Tainted Pakistan batsman Umar Akmal on Tuesday appealed against his three-year ban slapped by the PCB for failing to report a corrupt approach.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Geo reported that Akmal has filed an appeal and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) will appoint an independent panel to hear the matter. The sports website also reported that Akmal has hired adviser to the prime minister on Parliamentary Affairs, Babar Awan's law firm to help him in his case.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="">PCB had banned Akmal from all forms of cricket last month</a> after its disciplinary panel found him guilty of not reporting corrupt approaches ahead of the Pakistan Super League earlier this year.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Akmal was suspended hours before his PSL team Quetta Gladiators was to take on Islamabad in the opening match of the 2020 PSL in February.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The PCB charged him for double breach of Article 2.4.4 of its Anti-Corruption Code in two unrelated incidents in February this year ahead of the PSL—a T20 event also featuring international cricketers.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Akmal was suspended hours before his PSL team Quetta Gladiators was to take on Islamabad in the opening match of the 2020 edition.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The PCB charged him for two breaches of Article 2.4.4 of its Anti-Corruption Code in two unrelated incidents in February this year ahead of the PSL.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Akmal, 29, is the younger brother of former Pakistan wicketkeeper-batsman Kamran Akmal, who played 53 Tests, 58 T20s, 157 ODIs, and cousin of current captain Babar Azam.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Akmal, who last played for Pakistan in October, has featured in 16 Tests, 121 ODIs and 84 T20s, scoring 1,003, 3,194 and 1,690 runs respectively.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Akmal, who promised a lot after making a hundred in New Zealand on his Test debut, failed to live up to the high expectations that came with some fine performances early in his career.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Constant run-ins with the authorities also marred his stop-start career.</p> Tue May 19 21:11:09 IST 2020 no-handshakes-hugging-spitting-at-training-camp-afi-tells-athletes <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>No handshakes or hugging, no spitting and no visits to salons during lockdown are among the strict guidelines issued by Athletics Federation of India to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, following government's decision to resume sporting activity without spectators.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><a title="SAI issues guidelines to prepare centres, athletes to resume training" href="">After the sports ministry gave its go-ahead to the resumption of training</a> in its complexes and stadiums, the AFI on Tuesday issued its own Standard Operating Procedures for training of the campers.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Through the document, the AFI directed the athletes to train under strict social distancing guidelines and also follow additional norms issued by the government "religiously".</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>According to the SOPs, the athletes are prohibited from training if they have flu-like symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, difficulty in breathing, fatigue, or if they have been in close contact with someone who showed such symptoms.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Do not shake hands or hug other athletes, coaching staff members, do not sneeze or cough without covering your mouth or nose. Do not spit on the ground," said the document, made official on Tuesday.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In case of any such symptoms, the athlete concerned should report immediately to the chief/deputy chief coach or the high performance director.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Maintain social distance at all times. Visit to barber shops/saloons/beauty parlours/shopping malls is strictly prohibited. Do not eat outside or order food parcels," read another set of instructions.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The campers have been told not to exercise/train/walk in groups and they should maintain a safe distance of at least 2 metres from others during training as well as in other times also. They have been asked to carry their own water bottle, energy drinks as well as hand sanitisers and towels.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The athletes are required to leave their rooms exactly five minutes before their scheduled training. They will have to "rush back" to their respective hostel rooms immediately after training and they should not "hang around".</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>They have been asked to "always wear full sleeves T-shirts, tights, shirts whenever stepping out of the room". Sauna/ice bath facilities will not be available during this "restricted training" phase.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Make sure your belongings are not touched by others. Similarly, do not touch anything that does not belong to you. Take shower immediately after you reach your room. Do not wear same clothes after shower."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Regarding the safe use of equipment, the document said: "Sanitize all handled implements prior to use and after, for example shots, javelins and discus. Clean equipment with a disinfectant spray at the conclusion of training.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>"Use of disposable gloves by athletes is highly recommended. For relay athletes practicing baton exchange, use of hand gloves is mandatory."</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The coaches have been made responsible for the strict adherence to these instructions by the athletes who will train under them at all times. They have been tasked to ensure that the athletes maintain social distancing at all times.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The athletes will not be allowed to leave the camps except in cases which can only be sanctioned by AFI president. Those leaving the camp/visiting their homes/or any other place outside the campus must go through a 14-day quaratine before rejoining the camp.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>All the athletes have also been asked to download government of India's Aarogya Setu App for tracking COVID-19 infected people near them as well as assessing their own health from time to time.</p> Tue May 19 21:04:43 IST 2020 rohit-once-ignored-dhonis-strategy-and-scored-his-1st-double-ton <a href=""><img border="0" hspace="10" align="left" style="margin-top:3px;margin-right:5px;" src="" /> <p>India opener <a title="Rohit Sharma" href="">Rohit Sharma</a> has revealed that he scored his first double century after he ignored then captain <a title="Mahendra Singh Dhoni" href="">Mahendra Singh Dhoni</a>’s advice to not take chances and play till the end in the one-dayer against Australia in Bengaluru. Rohit tormented the Australian bowlers in the match to become the third cricketer to score a double ton in ODIs.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Rohit is also the only cricketer to score three double centuries in one day international cricket.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The Indian vice-captain was in conversation with off-spinner <a title="Ravichandran Ashwin " href="">Ravichandran Ashwin</a> during an Instagram Live session. On #ReminisceWithAsh, a segment featuring cricket personalities on his Instagram account, Ashwin talks about the sport and certain incidents in particular and engages with his fans and followers.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In this particular segment, Rohit spoke about his double ton against Australia at Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru in November 2013. He went on to say that after his partnerships with Shikhar Dhawan and Suresh Raina, Dhoni joined him at the other end and advised him to play till the end. But ‘Hitman’ Rohit “just wanted to bat” and score runs.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“I never thought I would score a double hundred. I just wanted to bat.. It rained a bit and them along with Shikhar, remained not out till the break. Soon Shikhar got out and Virat was run out as well. So I took over the responsibility,” Rohit said. He mentioned that after a great partnership with Raina, his stand of 62 runs (off 38 balls) with Dhoni was vital. The skipper told Rohit to not take any chances and ensure that he played till the very end.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>“During the partnership, he (Dhoni) kept on talking and discussing things with me. He said, ‘You are the set batsman and we want you to bat till the 50th over and I will be the one who takes chances’,” Rohit recalled.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>However, instead of following his captain’s advice, Rohit felt he could put pressure on the bowlers “right here, right now”. He said he then decided to “just go after the bowlers”.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Rohit went on to score 209 runs off 158 balls that included 12 fours and 16 sixes.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Watch Rohit’s IGTV session with Ashwin here:&nbsp;</p> Tue May 19 18:37:41 IST 2020