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Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Indian win (at Holkar and Ahmedabad) ~ Indian coaches for foreign teams

The daily attraction is – Kabaddi World Cup 2016 – the game appeals for its sheer simplicity. It is a game of  raiders and blockers. To score a point, a raider must enter opposition territory, tag an opponent with any part of his body, and make it back into his side’s safety zone without getting entangled.  When  caught, his team loses a point and the raider  is temporarily eliminated – there are of course finer rules, which are a bit difficult to understand  

Yesterday at Ahmedabad, to our delight, India outclassed Bangladesh 57-20 in a league clash.  In a must-win crucial encounter in Group A, India lived up to their reputation to beat Bangladesh. Ajay Thakur scored 10 points for India after coming on as a substitute;  Pardeep Narwal led India's charge in the first half and ended with eight points. India inflicted the second all out in the 18th minute to take a commanding 24-9 lead. They led 27-10 at the end of the first half as the attack and defence worked well in tandem to put on a solid performance.

Balwan Singh ranks among the most decorated kabaddi players and coaches in the game’s history, especially from the Indian perspective. He has won several accolades as both player and coach, the coach of Pro Kabaddi League outfit Jaipur Pink Panthers, is the present Indian Coach.

Elsewhere, the  2016 Indian Super League season – football league of  eight teams again, each playing 14 matches during the regular season before culminating with the finals is on.  There are hypes surrounding every tournament and here the match ball gets delivered by courier just before the start of the match, for DHL is the Associate sponsor. From a social media contest, a winner is selected, who gets to deliver the match ball before the kickoff, providing chance to be there in the middle !!

Mumbai City FC and Atletico de Kolkata remained unbeaten in the third edition of the Indian Super League (ISL) but the home side’s winning run was stopped with a 1-1 draw thanks to an 82nd minute equaliser by Javi Lara. Matias Defederico had given Mumbai the lead in the first half after he unleashed a shot from distance and the left footed shot crept into the corner. Mumbai had more chances to extend the gap but were denied by the crossbar or poor finishing. In the second half, Mumbai sat back and absorbed pressure but after being reduced to ten men, ATK grew larger in the attack and made good in the 82nd minute with a Lara effort. The ATK player took a shot from distance and that took a wicked deflection to fly into the top corner.

Then to the mother of all games (for us) – at Holkar stadium, India completed a 3-0 whitewash in devastating fashion as a seven-wicket haul from R Ashwin shot New Zealand out for 153 in their last innings of the series. India declared just under an hour from tea, after Cheteshwar Pujara had completed his eighth Test hundred, to set New Zealand a target of 475 and give themselves a day and a half to take 10 wickets. They only needed 44.5 overs, as New Zealand lost nine wickets for 115 runs in the post-tea session.
pic credit : bcci/tv

Ashwin's figures of 7 for 59 were his best in Test cricket, as were his match figures of 13 for 140. He picked up his 21st  five-wicket haul, his sixth ten-wicket match haul, his seventh Player of the Match award and seventh Player of the Series award - fourth in a row - as well. There probably isn't a more influential cricketer anywhere in the world today. Certainly no one has played a bigger part in India securing the No. 1 Test ranking, a feat they got to celebrate when Virat Kohli was handed the ICC Test championship mace at the end of the match, in front of a capacity crowd in Indore.

321 India's margin of victory in Indore, their second-biggest in terms of runs. The biggest - by 337 runs* - came was against South Africa in Delhi last year. Also, this was New Zealand'ssecond-biggest defeat in terms of runs. 27 Wickets by Ashwin in this series - the second-most by any Indian bowler in a three-match series, behind Harbhajan Singh's 32 wickets in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2000-01.

The coach is Anil Kumble ~ and we are used to seeing many foreign coaches – the likes of John Wright, Greg Chappel and Gary Kirsten.  In Kabaddi, it is different : Navneet Gautam, who led the Jaipur Pink Panthers to victory in the inaugural Pro Kabaddi League, spent the better part of September in Melbourne, as he and Srinivas Reddy are the coaches for Australian kabaddi team.  KC Suthar is the coach of Iran. Ashok Das, of Indian origin is the coach for England. For USA it is another Indian origin person Mohinder Singh Sidhu.   For Poland, it is: Harwinder Singh and K Ganesh- and the team that caused the greatest upset in the inaugural match, South Korea that beat India is coached by Jaiveer Sharma who has been coaching them since 2012.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

12th Oct 2016.

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