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Here are all the key updates from November 26, Sunday:
Chhetri on the scoresheet, BFC share the spoils with NEUFC
Bengaluru FC striker Sunil Chhetri scored from the spot but his goal went in vain as Aleksandar Jovanovic's own-goal at the cusp of half-time saw Bengaluru play out a 1-1 draw with NorthEast United FC. The result sees Bengaluru move to the 8th place, while NorthEast remained rooted to 6th.
Bengaluru will next host Punjab FC on November 30, while NorthEast will travel to play East Bengal FC at the Salt Lake Stadium on December 4.
Watch the full highlights here �� https://t.co/0JxdZUFTR7#ISL #ISL10 #LetsFootball #ISLonJioCinema #ISLonSports18 #NorthEastUnitedFC #BengaluruFC #ISLRecap | @NEUtdFC @bengalurufc pic.twitter.com/rgzYPB4wkF
- Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) November 26, 2023
Aditi Ashok wins her second title of 2023
Indian golfer Aditi Ashok put up a brilliant show to win the Andalucia Costa del Sol Open de Espana today. This marks her second Ladies European Tour victory of the year, after winning the Kenya Open back in February.
Aditi has been India's best female golfer in recent times, having finished a creditable fourth at the Tokyo Olympics and winning the silver medal at the Asian Games last month.
- Ladies European Tour (@LETgolf) November 26, 2023
Mo Salah's wish: To play against Magnus Carlsen
Liverpool and Egypt striker Mohamed Salah says he's a huge chess buff and hopes to take on one of the world's greatest chess players ever, Magnus Carlsen. Speaking to Sky Sports, Salah said, "I'm addicted to chess. No one has a chance with Magnus, but hopefully we play one day, I'm 1400 [Elo Rating]."
Picture that - one of the greatest African footballers of all-time battling it out over 64 squares against a multiple-time world champion. That would make a solid pay-per-view!
Carlsen responded to Salah with a waving hand emoji on X. Fun fact: Carlsen is a massive football fan and a Fantasy Premier League expert. Such is Carlsen's love for football that his Norway chess team captain told ESPN "He [Carlsen] probably knows all the football players in so many of the leagues. He has an exceptional memory, he knows every player in Spain, England, and Germany. He's also watching some very strange stuff like beach football in Brazil for example."
- Chess.com (@chesscom) November 25, 2023
Shubhankar slips down the ladder at the Johannesburg Open
Indian golfer Shubhankar Sharma's average run continued as he added an even par 70 in the third round to finish tied 48th at the Johannesburg Open on Sunday. Shubhankar, with four birdies and four bogeys, had a poor run of three bogeys in a row, which ruined his card. At even par for three days, he was way behind as home star Thriston Lawrence took a three-shot lead.
Wrestling Federation changes its Olympics selection policy
The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) has made a radical change in its selection policy for the upcoming Paris Olympics: unlike earlier, wrestlers who win an Olympic quota will not be longer be assured of a spot in the Olympic team. Until now, the rule was that the wrestler who won the Olympic quota had the right to represent India in that weight class at the Olympics.
However, the adhoc committee that is in-charge of the WFI now, has said that the Indian team for the Paris Olympics will be finalised through a two-step selection process, where the wrestlers who have earned the quota will compete against a challenger in June and the winner of that bout will represent India at the Games.
While only Antim Panghal has sealed an Olympic quota so far, other Indian wrestlers can win quotas at the Asian Olympic Qualifier in Kyrgyzstan (April 19-21) and the World Olympic Qualifiers in Turkey (May 9-12). India can earn 17 more Paris quota places in the two tournaments -- six each in men's free-style and greco-roman and five in the women's category. All the future quota places winners too will have to compete against a challenger to secure a Paris spot.
China Masters final: Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty lose to Liang Wei Keng and Wang Chang
Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty saw their incredible run in finals (eight straight wins, six in 2023) come to an end against Liang Wei Keng and Wang Chang, going down 19-21, 21-18, 19-21 despite saving seven match points in the decider. Satwik-Chirag had last lost a final in the 2019 French Open (non-team, and they did not make a final in 2020 and 2021), but came incredibly close to a fairytale comeback, only to narrowly miss out in the decider.
The battle of the former world no.1s (Satwik-Chirag hitting the milestone just a few weeks back) vs the current world no. 1 - Liang-Wang began to huge cheers for the Chinese pair playing in front of their home crowd. Satwik-Chirag had the advantage of having won their most recent meeting in straight games, although Liang-Wang led their H2H 2-1 coming into this tie.
It was an error-strewn start to the game as Wiang-Lang went wide with a return and Chirag fouled of his first serve. The Chinese pair settled with a couple of measured winners and forced Chirag into an error at the net to lead 4-1. The errors from Chirag at the net continued as Wang's deft strokeplay forced errors. Even a superb diving retrieval from the Indian wasn't enough as the Chinese pair led 8-3. Chirag switched tack - smashing from the back court with immediate dividends, as the Indian pair won the next four points to claw it back to 7-8. A superb flick serve from Chirag saw Liang float it into the net to make it 9-9 before a smash down the middle in the next point, followed by an error from Satwik saw the Chinese duo lead 11-9 at the interval.
With P Gopichand coaching his charges to not force their shots with too much power, Satwik-Chirag resumed the game, but Wang's deft returns immediately put paid to any tactical changes as they led 13-10. Satwik-Chirag adopted a more defensive stance and dealt with the quick rallies, thus forcing errors and drawing it back to 13-13 and then 15-15 as Liang was a bit errant with his attempted smashes. A lovely variation from Satwik in his serve saw the Indian pair take the lead, but Wang's return of the next point levelled things again at 16-16. It was neck-and-neck with the quick rallies but a couple of clever serves saw Liang-Wang take a 19-17 lead. Chirag's aggression at the net, coupled with Satwik's stellar defence had the score level at 19-19 again, before a stumble from Chirag saw Liang smash a winner and earn a game point. A clever serve forced Chirag onto the back foot and Satwik could only find the net from Liang's smash as the Chinese duo took the first game 21-19 after 19 minutes.
- PRANNOY HS (@PRANNOYHSPRI) November 26, 2023
Laing-Wang's deft serving saw them race to a 4-1 lead in the second game again - and despite Satwik-Chirag bringing it back to 4-5 with some rare aggression, the Chinese pair responded in kind to lead 7-4. The longest rally of the game saw Satwik-Chirag bring it back to 6-9 - a 29 shot affair that ended with Liang screwing wide. Their best bet had been the smash between the middle of Satwik-Chirag and it gave them a 10-7 lead, but for once they went long while employing it and thereafter they found the net as the game was levelled 10-10. A super smash from Chirag after a quick flurry saw the Indian pair go into the break with a 11-10 lead.
Some errant returns from Liang-Wang saw them trail 11-15 as play resumed, with Wang left frustrated after sending a regulation smash into the net. The see-saw nature of the game saw Satwik-Chirag now afflicted with errors in their returns as the rallies lengthened - which saw the Chinese pair drag it back to 15-16 after Satwik left a return that was well in. The Indians shrugged off service errors to increase their lead to 18-16, only for the old enemy - the smash down the middle from Liang - to reduce the gap back to one point. Both pairs traded points in fast-paced rallies displaying all their defensive prowess, only for Satwik to earn game point at 20-18 with a cleverly directed smash. Liang found the net in the next point, thus forcing the tie into a decider as Satwik-Chirag took the second game 21-18.
Satwik-Chirag had lost the last two times they had faced Liang-Wang in a decider, and it seemed fortune would desert them once more as they lost the challenge in the opening point of the third game - after which Satwik went wide with a smash and was deceived by a drop-smash to hand the Chinese pair a 3-0 lead. It was 5-0 in quick time as both Satwik and Chirag sent easy returns into the net. The deficit increased to 1-8 as Satwik went wide, before a service error from Wang saw a rare point for the Indian duo. A stellar rally in the next point saw the stadium erupt after Liang retrieved what looked like an unreturnable smash and Satwik's floater to the back court went long. A fortunate drop from Chirag at the net saw the Indians make it 4-10 and then 5-10 after as Wang was outfoxed by Chirag's serve. The gap remained the same at the change of ends as Liang-Wang led 11-6 after cleverly moving Satwik-Chirag to the same side of the court and then flicking it out of reach.
The Indian duo remained calm with their defending and forced a couple of errors to draw the gap back to three points, before a flurry of quick exchanges ended with Chirag sending a return into the net as Liang-Wang led 12-8. Their strategy of ramping up the pace kept working as Satwik went wide in the next point, followed by Liang's smash down the middle as well - the gap back up to six points at 14-8. It was 15-8 soon after as Satwik was forced wide while defending a smash - the momentum firmly with the Chinese pair. It was brilliant badminton from Liang-Wang that followed - as they extended their lead to 19-10 as Satwik-Chirag wilted under the pressure of needing to force the points. A flurry of complacent errors from Liang-Wang saw them lose three quick points, but they won the rally thereafter with a clever mix of movement and direction to get their match point at 20-13. Satwik-Chirag saved the next three match points as their opponents grew nervous, asking for the shuttle to be changed and wiping the floor to stem the tide.
Liang found the net early in the next rally as the nerves flowed into the crowd and Satwik-Chirag's defence also saw another error from the Chinese pair as it became 20-18. The Indian pair had saved six match points and it was soon seven as Liang-Wang went long from the next rally. An attempt at a medical time-out was refused by the umpire as the Chinese pair's nerves were clearly on display. The next rally was as high-level badminton as they come, with both Satwik and Chirag retrieving excellently, but it was one too many as Chirag found the net - Liang-Wang collapsing to their knees in celebration after taking the decider 21-19.
Men's National Boxing Championships
Asian Championships gold medalist Sanjeet (92kg) and three-time national champion Varinder Singh (60kg) got off to winning starts on the opening day of the Men's National Boxing Championships in New Delhi today.
Sanjeet of SSCB beat Karnataka's Jagadheeshwaran J via RSC and will next take on Chandigarh's Sawan Gill tomorrow. Varinder, representing RSPB, got the better of Amlesh Kumar of Bihar to set up a round of 32 clash with Maharashtra's Vishal Nupe.
Other winners on the day included Rajasthan's Harsh Choudhary (80kg) and Jashanpreet Singh (71kg) of Punjab.
The two big names at the Nationals - six-time Asian medallist Shiva Thapa (63.5kg) and World Championships silver medalist Amit Panghal (51kg) both got byes in the first round.
What else is in store today?
Regular Indian Super League action is back as NorthEast United host Bengaluru FC at 8pm, with both teams in sixth and eighth positions in the table, respectively. NEUFC are the season's surprise element after a backroom revamp by Mandar Tamhane and the former BFC CEO will be looking to get one over on his old team.
Cricket is back too as India take on Australia in the second T20I in Thiruvananthapuram. Captain Suryakumar Yadav and Rinku Singh led India to victory in the first game and will hope that trend continues.
The National Boxing Championships is going on and Indians are in action in golf tournaments around the world.
What happened yesterday?
Kerala Blasters went top of the ISL table with their third consecutive win - defeating Hyderabad FC 1-0 at home.
Chennaiyin FC and East Bengal played out an attritional 1-1 draw, as both sides languish outside the playoff spots.
Pankaj Advani won his 27th (yes, that's not a typo) World Championship completing his fifth grand double at the Billiards Worlds
Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty reached the final of the China Masters with a convincing 21-15 22-20 win over He Je Ting and Ren Xiang Yu of China in the semifinal.
You can check all the details of Saturday's news events here.