KKR vs RPS: Rahul Tripathi 93 overpowers Kolkata at Eden Gardens

first_imgRising Pune Supergiant rode on little-known Rahul Tripathi’s career-best 93 of 52 balls to beat Kolkata Knight Riders by four wickets in their Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter at the Eden Gardens on Wednesday and take giant strides towards the playoffs. (Scorecard)Pune, now on 14 points from 11 games, moved to third spot with KKR staying on second with the same number of points as Pune from 11 outings. Replying to KKR’s 155/8, Pune scored 158/6 in 19.2 overs.Tripathi, who is playing his first IPL, brought up his fifty in just 23 deliveries with eight fours and three sixes.The Maharashtra batsman went from strength to strength after his half-century spanking chinaman Kuleep Yadav for three sixes on the trot in the 13th over.Chris Woakes fared best among the bowlers for the hosts (3/18) taking the wickets of Pune and Australia skipper Steve Smith (9) and in-form Manoj Tiwary (8) off two excellent deliveries.Umesh Yadav (1/22) removed India teammate Ajinkya Rahane (11) early but it was Tripathi who remained unfazed and took the charges against the likes of Nathan Coulter-Nile whom he spanked for 32 runs.Ben Stokes, the hero of Pune’s last game against Gujarat Lions, departed for 14 but by the time the million-dollar England all-rounder trotted back towards the dugout, the job was all but done.In came Mahendra Singh Dhoni to loud cheers only to make the long walk back to the dressing room scoring just 5 with Kuldeep picking his wicket.Tripathi was finally dismissed by Woakes, seven runs short of his maiden ton but Dan Christian (9 not out) hit the winning runs with a six off Colin de Grandhomme in the final over.advertisementEarlier, the New Zealand all-rounder Grandhomme’s 36 and Manish Pandey’s 37 saved KKR the blushes as the hosts recovered from a top-order collapse to post 155/8.AJaydev Unadkat (2/28) and Washington Sundar (2/18) were the best bowlers for Pune.Grandhomme (36 of 19 balls) and Pandey (37 of 19 balls) joined hands when their side were tottering at 55/4 to stitch together a 48-run stand for the fifth wicket.Suryakumar Yadav (30 off 16 not out) struck some lusty blows at the death hitting two consecutive fours and a six off Unadkat who leaked 21 runs in the penultimate over.Sans the services of their best batsman Robin Uthappa – out with a niggle, the hosts’ batting lacked zip losing three wickets for just 41 runs in the Powerplay.Sunil Narine was the first to go, not connecting with the ball in the first five deliveries to finally give bowler Unadkat an easy catch in his follow through.Sheldon Jackon (10) followed suit soon after, getting hit wicket off the bowling of Sundar.Skipper Gautam Gambhir (24) hit Stokes for two back-to-back fours and in the next over, tanked Sundar for a boundary and a six before holing out to Rahane at deep midwicket.Imran Tahir got rid of Yusuf Pathan (4) as the men in purple who have an enviable record at home looked hapless.Pandey and Grandhomme, who was dropped once at long-off by Dan Christian when the New Zealander was on 10, steadied the ship somewhat before Pandey got out.Christian made amends for his grassed catch, with a slower one which Pandey failed to pick, giving an easy catch to Rahane at deep midwicket.Unadkat got the wicket of Grandhomme with Woakes (1) getting running out soon after.Coulter-Nile scored six before falling to Stokes as Umesh Yadav remained unbeaten with Suryakumar on 2.last_img read more

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Ram Rahim sentencing: Bizarre conspiracy theories blame China, Pakistan, and drug cartel for rapist’s fate

first_imgEven after a special CBI Court held Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh guilty of rape, several Dera Sacha Sauda supporters feel the man they considered to be God has been hard done by.Since Friday’s verdict, hundreds of Dera Sacha Sauda supporters have been gripped by a persecution complex of sorts. Conspiracy theories abound. Scores of Dera supporters would go to any length to blame anyone but their ‘Baba’.They believe he can do no wrong, that ‘pitaji’ is being targeted for his good work and for going after societal evils.Several theories – some of them bizarre – have begun to float around in the last few days.RAM RAHIM’S ‘SURGICAL STRIKE’One of them says China or Pakistan could be behind his ordeal. The reason? Ram Rahim Singh showed a surgical strike on Pakistan in his movie, ‘Hind ka napak ko jawab MSG LION HEART 2′, a movie in which he played the lead role.Some blame a drug cartel, as they believe Ram Rahim Singh has taken up the cudgels to go after the drug menace – by convincing people to not use drugs.”Actually, it is (a) 100 per cent false accusation. Guruji is not this type of saint. He is multi talented personality…It is (a) false accusation…the drug sellers and many other unsocial people, those business got closed and they were against Guruji, they were planning how to put Guru ji in jail for many years and they made the plan, this false accusation, even they prepared the witness…30 lakh rupees was given to a person to give false witness against Guruji,” said Narottam Das, the principal of a boys’ school in Sriganganagar’s Gurdar Modia village.advertisementSome also blame the CBI, which played a significant role in securing the self-proclaimed godman’s conviction.”I have to say that some mistake has been made somewhere in (the) investigation. If complete investigation would have happened (by the CBI), this result would not have come”, says a childhood friend of Ram Rahim Singh’s.DERA DEVOTEES DENY FELLOW SUPPORTERS’ HAND IN VIOLENCEDera supporters aren’t even willing to accept that Ram Rahim Singh’s supporters were responsible for the mayhem that followed Friday’s verdict.”The violence that happened later was due to some miscreants, they went on a rampage, our (Dera) lovers were calm. Those who indulged in violence may have come from outside,” says a Dera supporter who went to Panchkula on the day of the verdict.The rape convict’s blind bhakts can blame everyone else except the man himself.”I have studied with him from class 1 till class 10. His disposition was very good, he was inclined towards spiritualism as well during childhood…He had interest in studies as well, (he) was good in studies, (and he) was good in sports as well…We used to eat, play together. I never felt any such thing about him.”, says Jagdev Singh, Ram Rahim Singh’s first cousinAcross Deras, there is a feeling of sullenness. The question is: What happens to Ram Rahim supporters’ faith now?ALSO READSon of journalist who was shot dead for exposing Ram Rahim rape case still awaits justice Ram Rahim Family History: The story of a devil, a saint and Papa’s angels Gurmeet Ram Rahim has been given 20 years in jail, not 10; slapped Rs 30 lakh fineALSO WATCHGurmeet Ram Rahim sentenced to 20 years in jail, fined Rs 30 lakhlast_img read more

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US Open: Federer dismantles Nishioka, Djokovic battles past Fucsovics

first_imgRoger Federer hardly broke a sweat despite extreme heat at the US Open and crusied past Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka 6-2, 6-2, 6-4 in his first round match in New York on Tuesday.Federer served up a masterclass of serve and volley tennis to the spectators and kept his time at the court to minimum even as his competitors slogged through long rallies with the temperature soaring to 32 degree Celsius.Federer was a poetry in motion on Tuesday pulling his world No.177 opponent from one side of the court to the other at will.Second seed Federer broke the left-hander Nishioka in the very first set of the one-sided encounter and never turned around. He raced through his service games and wrapped up the first set in just 28 minutes.”I’m happy to be back in New York, healthy – the last couple of years have been difficult so it’s nice to be back, feeling really good,” Federer said courtside after the win.READ – US Open: Rafael Nadal through to Round 2, Stan Wawrinka upsets Grigor Dimitrov”I’m happy I played well tonight and Nishioka was a tough opponent. He’s got fast legs and a bright future ahead of him. I was very happy with how I played.”R1 @rogerfederer defeats Nishioka 6-2, 6-2, 6-4 and sets up a R2 clash against Benoit Paire…https://t.co/YlB5v188um#USOpen pic.twitter.com/siijt7GEPTUS Open Tennis (@usopen) August 29, 2018The Swiss took 35 minutes to close out the second set and, with Nishioka firmly on the ropes, started the third by racing to a 4-0 lead before his Japanese opponent held serve.advertisementNishioka rallied briefly at the end, denying Federer the chance to serve out the set and battling back to 5-4 with his first break of serve.But Federer put his beleaguered opponent out of his misery in his next service game, wrapping up the victory in one hour and 52 minutes.Federer, who has never lost an opening round match at Flushing Meadows, said he would try to continue that streak until he finally hangs up his racket.”I’m happy I never stumbled at the first hurdle. It’s almost time to retire, but not yet,” the 37-year-old said with a smile, adding that the conditions had been tough.”I think particularly tough for us Europeans, we don’t get this type of humidity where we live and grow up. It’s something we have to get used to,” added Federer, who is looking for a sixth US Open crown and first since 2008.Next up for the Swiss is a second-round clash with unseeded Frenchman Benoit Paire.Also read – Serena Williams registers big win on US Open return, Venus beats KuznetsovaDJOKOVIC BATTLES THROUGH BRUTAL HEAT TO TOPPLE FUCSOVICSNovak Djokovic overcame Hungary’s Marton Fucsovics 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 in the US Open first round on Tuesday in punishing temperatures that prompted officials to observe a heat rule for men’s singles matches for the first time.The players took a 10-minute break between the third and fourth sets to help them cope with temperatures climbing above 90 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius).The pair, who were not allowed to speak to their coaches during the break, spent the downtime side-by-side, “naked in the ice baths,” Djokovic said in a post-match broadcast [email protected] prevails 6-3, 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 during a hot afternoon match against Fucsovicshttps://t.co/TzJsERuxQd#USOpen pic.twitter.com/Xrr3UwEZ9NUS Open Tennis (@usopen) August 28, 2018″It was quite a magnificent feeling, I must say,” he added.After claiming the first set, a visibly exhausted Djokovic smashed his racket as Fucsovics led 3-2 in the second. In between the action, both players draped themselves in ice towels and at one point Djokovic sat shirtless in his seat.”I was obviously hoping and praying that I’ll get to feel better as the match progresses,” Djokovic told reporters after the match.”Obviously I felt better, especially after that 10-minute break. For the first three sets, it was a survival mode for both of us.”The Serb came roaring back in the third set, clawing his way from 3-1 down before sweeping Fucsovics in the fourth.”I had to find a way to dig myself out of the trouble,” Djokovic said.”I think that was a turning point. 4-3 in the third when he was serving, I managed to play a good game.”Djokovic was back at the US Open for the first time since 2016 after claiming his fourth Wimbledon title this year and completing a sweep of Masters series events.advertisementZVEREV EASES PAST LUCKY LOSER POLANSKY IN FIRST ROUNDFourth seed Alexander Zverev hardly broke sweat despite the sweltering US Open heat on Tuesday as the German dispatched Canadian lucky loser Peter Polansky 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 in a first-round match that lasted just over an hour and a half.The 21-year-old won 83 percent of his first serves, fired 10 aces and never faced a break point as he cruised past Polansky and set up a second-round showdown with Nicolas Mahut of France.”I played well from start to finish,” Zverev said in an on-court interview. “It’s never easy and obviously the conditions are tough for everyone because of the heat and humidity.”Tennis is very tough sport.”No. 4 seed Alexander Zverev hammers 37 winners as he wraps up a 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 victory over P. Polansky to reach R2.https://t.co/f8ALvCOwhj#USOpen pic.twitter.com/msmHTaR4rBUS Open Tennis (@usopen) August 28, 2018The loss ends a remarkable run for Polansky who this year became the first player ever to qualify for all four Grand Slam tournaments as a lucky loser, although he fell in the first round of all of them.The lucky loser is a player who has lost during qualifiers but makes the main draw because of a withdrawal and has his name picked at random.Zverev’s win was his first at a major under the tutelage of former world number one Ivan Lendl.”Thanks to him for joining my team,” said Zverev, who many pundits believe has the best chance of any of the young crop of men’s players to make a deep run at the tournament.”Hopefully this match is the beginning for us.”OTHER SEEDS’ RESULTS:Nick Kyrgios (30) beat Radu Albot 7-5, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2″48 winners? What’s the big deal?”@NickKyrgios made it rain with Hot Shots, defeating R. Albot 7-5, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 to move into the second round.https://t.co/NWOTntf1a2#USOpen pic.twitter.com/Qa1g80HpzTUS Open Tennis (@usopen) August 29, 2018Kei Nishikori (21) beat M Marterer 6-2, 6-2, 6-3A Mannarino (29) lost to F Tiafoe 1-6, 4-6, 6-4, 4-6David Goffin (10) beat F Gaio 6-2, 6-4, 7-6(5)F Krajinovic (32) lost to M Ebden 6-7(1), 7-6(5), 6-4, 1-6, 1-4Lucas Pouille beat Y Maden 7-6(6), 6-2, 7-5Fabio Fognini beat M Mmoh 4-6, 6-2, 6-5, 7-6(4)(With Reuters inputs)last_img read more

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