Sridhar let off hook by Panja
Ariz’ 166 helps Md. Sp. win
Mohun Bagan romp home to easy victory
Calcutta Races/ Alsheim fancied
Bangalore Races/ ‘Heights’ may win

 
 
SRIDHAR LET OFF HOOK BY PANJA 
 
 
BY A STAFF REPORTER
 
Calcutta, Feb. 1: 
His game in total disarray, top seed Vinod Sridhar was down for the count. Nothing doing, said Saurav Panja, I won’t let you lose.

Sridhar gratefully accepted the ‘offer’, turning the final set around to register a 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (9-7) win in the quarter finals of the Indian Oil Servo national grasscourt championships this afternoon.

Up next for Sridhar, who survived a three-set duel in the first round too, is Mustafa Ghouse. The seventh-seeded Ghouse was made to sweat by left-hander Kedar Shah before advancing to the last four with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 scoreline.

Making the semi-finals from the bottom half were third seed Vishal Uppal and Rohan Boppana.

Uppal was seldom in trouble as he shut out local boy Anand Radhakrishnan 7-6 (7-4), 6-2. The unseeded Boppana played two solid tie-breaks to oust No. 5 Manoj Mahadevan in a clash of two powerful servers.

For the six-foot-three Boppana, who trains at C.G.K. Bhupathi’s centre in Bangalore, this is his maiden (singles) semi-final entry in any major tournament. He’s turning out to be quite a giantkiller, having knocked out second seed Vijay Kannan in the first round.

The women’s draw lost its defending champion Radhika Tulpule, though there were no surprises if one were to go by seedings.

Tulpule, seeded three places lower than third-ranked Rushmi Chakravarthi, lost 7-6 (7-5), 3-6, 2-6 to the tall Chennai girl.

Rushmi will meet second seed Sonal Phadke who recovered to overpower No. 7 Geeta Manohar 6-7 (7-9), 6-4, 6-0.

The other semi-final will pit top seed Manisha Malhotra against No. 5 Shruti Dhawan, both of whom notched up comfortable straight-set wins today.

Getting back to the story of messed opportunities, Panja was twice within two points of a famous victory. Serving for the match at 6-5, Panja struggled to 30-all before the first serves deserted him. His second serves were chicken-feed for Sridhar who forced a tie-break with a pair of fine service returns.

In the tie-break, Panja led 5-4 with two serves to follow. A simple forehand volley was pushed long before Sridhar came up with a backhand crosscourt winner. Sridhar muffed his first match-point but converted the next one.

It was quite a tragedy for Panja, who had done all the hard work by recovering from a precarious 4-6, 0-2 situation. A trifle over-defensive in the first set, Panja’s aggression paid off in the second as he reeled off four straight games to get on top.

In the decider, too, Panja was down 2-5 before turning it around with some help from Sridhar. Not known for his serve-and-volley tennis, Sridhar got frustrated as the errors started creeping into his game. Panja again won four games in a row but when it came to the crunch, he cracked.

RESULTS

(All quarter finals)

MEN’S SINGLES: Vinod Sridhar bt Saurav Panja 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (9-7);/ Mustafa Ghouse bt Kedar Shah 6-3, 3-6, 6-3; Vishal Uppal bt Anand Radhakrishnan 7-6 (7-4), 6-2; Rohan Boppana bt Manoj Mahadevan 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-3).

WOMEN’S SINGLES: Manisha Malhotra bt Karishma Patel 6-3, 6-2; Shruti Dhawan bt Liza Pereira 6-0, 6-4; Rushmi Chakravarthi bt Radhika Tulpule 6-7 5-7), 6-3, 6-2; Sonal Phadke bt Geeta Manohar 6-7 (7-9), 6-4, 6-0.

MEN’S DOUBLES: Uppal & Ghouse bt K. Kannan & N. Mukundan 7-6 (9-7), 6-3; R. Narendran & P. Ravi Krishna bt S. Shivshankar & Radhakrishnan 6-3, 6-4; Boppana & V. Kannan bt Y. Arafat & C. Ajay 6-4, 6-4; V. Sridhar & A. Arun bt Panja & Kedar Shah 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.

WOMEN’S DOUBLES: Manisha & Rushmi bt K. Raje & T. Sricharanya 6-2, 6-2; R. Mandke & S. Phadke bt S. Dhawan & K. Patel 6-3, 7-5; G. Manohar & A. Venkatraman bt T. Yamini & N. Chandrasekhar 6-4, 6-4.

   

 
 
ARIZ’ 166 HELPS MD. SP. WIN 
 
 
BY A STAFF REPORTER
 
Calcutta, Feb. 1: 
An unbeaten 166 by Mohammed Ariz helped Mohammedan Sporting notch up a five-wicket win in their CAB League tie against Burnpur CC today.

The day’s other winners were Shyambazar, Tapan Memorial and Taltala Institute.

SUMMARISED SCORES

George Telegraph 200. Shyambazar 201/6 (Debdulal Majumdar 61 not out, Soumitra Chatterjee 41, Parimal Ghosh 37; Kunal Bajpai 3/39). Shyambazar won by 4 wkts.

Eastern Railway 249 (Raja Banerjee 46 not out; George Pal 4/52, Rajib Dutta 4/73). Tapan Memorial 250/4 (Joydeep Mukherjee 71 not out, Samir Ghosh 51, Arup Bhattacharjee 51). Tapan Memorial won by 6 wkts.

Burnpur CC 331/9. Mohammedan Sporting 335/5 (Mohammed Ariz 166 not out, Abid Murtaza 51, Sandip Rawat 42). Md. Sporting won by 5 wkts.

Ballygunge United 141 (Ashok Verma 4/28, Jayanta Mukherjee 4/50). Taltala Institute 144/3 (Anupam Giri 47, Samrat Sen 36). Taltala won by 7 wkts.

Milan Samity 371/8 (Prashant Kamdar 4/73). Rangers 239/7 (Parikshit Nanda 58, Chandan Sarkar 56; Prasenjit Shetty 4/83). Match drawn.

Aryan 361 (Pulak Das 104, Munish Jolly 67, Sovan Mitra 52, Soutam Mitra 51; A. Das 3/100). Tollygunge Agragami 261/3 (Mainak Sengupta 110, Dipankar Chowdhury 55, Avijit Sikdar 51, Souvik Ganguly 42; Dipak Singh 3/67). Match drawn.

Double-wicket meet

India captain Sourav Ganguly will be the star attraction in the Barisha SC-organised Ajanta Cup double-wicket meet at Oxford Mission ground tomorrow.

Other star participants include Arun Lal, Ashok Malhotra, Subrata Banerjee, Srikant Kalyani, Laxmi Ratan Shukla and Nikhil Haldipur.

Chandrabati to lead

Chandrabati Pal will lead Bengal in the East Zone women’s cricket meet to be held in Hazaribagh from Sunday.

THE SQUAD

Chandrabati Pal, Sima Bhowmick, Jayasree Roy, Jaya Mondal, Bobby Dutta, Bias Sarkar, Mithu Pal, Ila Das, Kalpana Das, Krishna Das, Rituparna Roy, Pampa Mondal, Payel Mukherjee, Sabari Chatterjee, Mitali Chanda.

   

 
 
MOHUN BAGAN ROMP HOME TO EASY VICTORY 
 
 
BY A STAFF REPORTER
 
Calcutta, Feb. 1: 
MOHUN BAGAN 3
SBT 0

The defence remains Mohun Bagan’s Achilles heel. But so smooth is the coordination between their medios and frontliners, the champions are not having to pay for some sloppy work by Lolendra Singh & Co. in the National League thus far.

Up against the none-too-strong State Bank of Travancore (SBT), Mohun Bagan played with increasing dominance to notch up a routine victory — their third in four games. The scoreline at the Salt Lake Stadium was 3-0, but the margin could well have been far bigger.

Despite an early Jose Barreto goal, the Mohun Bagan defence took a pounding in the opening 20 minutes and, in fact, survived three close calls following some elementary errors by Lolendra and Hussain Mustafi.

It was the lanky Bivash Ghosh who came to the rescue, bending down well in time to block stiff grounders from Asif Saheer and Abdul Hakim.

SBT looked good in their approach to the rival citadel, playing some pleasing square passes and inter-changing positions to stretch the Mohun Bagan rear line. Once their initial thrusts lost the edge, the Mohun Bagan midfielders took over the reins.

With R.P. Singh and Barreto at their creative best and Debjit Ghosh operating from an advanced position, Mohun Bagan’s pattern-weaving aggression proved too hot for the bankmen from Kerala. The introduction of James Singh for Rennedy Singh (the off-form Basudeb Mondal should have been replaced) at the start of the second session lent further edge to the forays.

The genius of Barreto was evident as early as in the fourth minute. Receiving a forward pass from Basudeb, Barreto’s left foot spelt magic as he waltzed past Jiju Jacob and V. Sivakumar before unleashing a diagonal left-footer which beat a diving Rajeev Kumar at the far post. The placement couldn’t have been better.

The Brazilian could have added two more in the first half itself. He first stroked the ball inches wide after an R.C. Prakash sortie had been partially blocked by Rajeev. Minutes later, the ’keeper just managed to tip over a Barreto shot from close range.

The flag-kick brought Bagan the second goal. Rennedy floated the ball routinely into the box and saw an unmarked Debjit head in without a care in the world. The entire SBT defence had frozen in a moment of fatal indecision.

A string of missed chances later, Mohun Bagan made it 3-0 half an hour into the second session. R.P. Singh followed a Barreto through ball and flicked it in from an acute angle even as Jacob made a desperate attempt to tackle him.

TEAMS

MOHUN BAGAN: Bivash Ghosh, Dulal Biswas, Amouri da Silva, Hussain Mustafi, Lolendra Singh, Basudeb Mondal (Jayanta Sen, 69), R.P. Singh, Debjit Ghosh, Rennedy Singh (James Singh, 46), Jose Barreto, Amar Ganguly (R.C. Prakash, 25).

SBT: Rajeev Kumar, V. Sivakumar, Jiju Jacob, Vinu Jose (K. Ajayan, 46), Lionel Thomas (Sunil Kumar, 71), R. Prajeev, Suresh Babu, T. Shabir Ali, V.P. Shaji, Asif Saheer (Abdul Naushad, 59), Abdul Hakim.

Referee: Rizwanul Haque.

   

 
 
CALCUTTA RACES/ ALSHEIM FANCIED 
 
 
BY OUR TURF CORRESPONDENT
 
Calcutta, Feb. 1: 
Vijay Singh-trained Alsheim is fancied to win the Bahrain Trophy at the races here tomorrow. Cristopher Alford partners the Tecorno-Karishma’s Pet colt.

RACE CARD AND SELECTIONS

1. Princess Jani Handicap 1,100m (Maidens; 3-y-o only Rt. 00-28) 12.25 pm: Alcalde 60 Rabani 3; Alegria 57 C. Alford 5; Angels Venture 56 Brij 4; Anokato 56 Upadhya 2; Maltayar 56 Gurang 1; Rich Dominion 55 Gowli 6; Lively Project 53.5 A. Imran 7. Alegria 1. Alcalde 2. Lively Project 3.

2. Victo Handicap 1,400m (Cl V; Rt. 00-28) 12.55 pm: Floral Path 61 A. P. Singh 6; Avionic 60.5 Rabani 2; Calculus 60.5 A. Imran 7; Eau Savage 60 Shanker 3; Madame X 59.5 Gowli 4; Heaven’s Blessing 58.5 Haroon 5; Go India Go 48 Smith 1. Madame X 1. Calculus 2. Aviomic 3.

3. I. N. S. Hooghly Cup 1,200m (Cl IV; Rt. 22-50) 1.25 pm: Orbital Star 60.5 A. Imran 2; Kargil Soldier 60 Connorton 4; Bold Apparel 58.5 Gowli 5; Master Bold 53.5 C. Alford 7; Royal Ruler 53.5 K. Gurang 1; Stella Blue 50 Amil 3; Pneumatic Power 49 Tamang 6. Master Bold 1. Kargil Soldoer 2. Orbital Star 3.

4. Robert Bruce Handicap 1,200m (Cl V; Rt. 00-28) 2.05 pm: Sky Hawk 60 Yacoob 5; Abstone Queen 57 A. Imran 6; Piece Of Cake 57 Upadhya 3; Alastar 56 C. Alford 7; Armed Alarm 53.5 Islam 4; Art Smart 52 M. Reuben 2; Arizona Star 48.5 Kujur 1. Abstone Queen 1. Alastar 2. Sky Hawk 3.

5. Bahrain Trophy 1,600m (Cl II; Cl III; eligible Rt.44-94) 2.40 pm: Tanganyika 60 Kujur 3; Prince Obolensky 58.5 Yadav 6; Giorgio 57.5 Khalander 9; Alsheim 56.5 C. Alford 4; Double Bull 53.5 A. Imran 2; Lockers Park 51.5 Shanker 7; No Regrets 48 M. Reuben 8; Sharp Sensation 47 Amil 1; Charlene 47 Rabani 5. Alaseim 1. Sharp Sensation 2. No Regrets 3.

6. Little Lady Cup, Div-I 1,200m (Cl III; Rt. 44-72) 3.15 pm: Staffordshire 60 Gowli 7; Santillana 58 Upadhya 8; Peace Envoy 56 (withdrawn); Crimson King 54.5 Gurang 4; Smokey Bear 54 Som; Sadaf 53 A. Imran 3; Ispahan 52.5 Connorton 6; Andestine 50.5 C. Alford 5; Spanish Drum’s 47.5 Tamang 2. Sadaf 1. Ispahan 2. Andestine 3.

7. Little Lady Cup, Div-II 1,200m (Cl III; Rt.44-72) 3.50 pm: Added Asset 60 Gowli 7; Cup Of Life 57 C. Alford 2; Sky Command 57 Rutherford 9; Arctic Fancy 54.5 A. Imran 8; Pure Energy 53.5 K. Gurang 3; Ardon 53 Upadhya 5; Sovereign Bullet 52 Tamang 1; Scarlet Raider 51.5 Som 4; Magnifico 48 Amil 6. Sky Command 1. Added Asset 2. Cup of Life 3.

8. Philosopher Handicap 1,100m (Cl IV; 5-y-o & over Rt. 22-50) 4.25 pm: Cavala 61 Islam 5; Just Kidding 60 Rutherford 2; Googy Gangster 59.5 Upadhya 9; Splendid Star 59.5 A. Imran 6; Iron Warrior 56.5 A. P. Singh 4; Stately Honour 55 Haroon 1; Tequila Shot 55 Shanker 7; Aflicker 54 Rabani 3; Glass Slipper 53.5 Ahmed 10; Special Sovereign 53.5 Amil 8; All Jade 50.5 Yasin 11. Splendid Star 1. Just Kidding 2. Cavala 3.

Day’s Best: Alegria

Double: Abstone Queen & Splendid Star

   

 
 
BANGALORE RACES/ ‘HEIGHTS’ MAY WIN 
 
 
FROM WILLIAM TELL
 
Bangalore, Feb. 1: 
The Moses- trained Holy Heights is taken to win the 1,400m Shravanabelagola Cup in the hands of jockey Shakti Singh.

SELECTIONSM

3 pm: Carnival Crown 1. Solo Spirit 2. Young Lust 3. 3.30 pm: Kisunugntly 1. Don King 2. Sun Court 3. 4 pm: Nairn 1. Blue Hare 2. Peter Pepper 3. 4.30 pm: Holy Heights 1. Star Festival 2. Cruden Bay 3. 5 pm: Financer 1. Musky Bird 2. Alisa 3. 5.30 pm: Three Coins 1. Triple King 2. Silver Falcon 3.

Day’s Best: Kisunugntly

Double: Nairn & Financer.

THURSDAY’S MUMBAI RESULTS

(With inter-state dividends)

1. Mulberry Plate, Div-II : Raring To Go (Rajendra) 1; True Thriller 2; Line Of Control 3. Won by: SH; Dist; (1-26). Tote: Win Rs 22; Place: 13; 12; 14; Quinella: 22; Tanala: 70. Fav: Raring To Go (2). 2. Kr. Ramkrishan Singh Trophy: Sanaga (Prakash) 1; Great Pasha 2; Great Emperor 3. Won by: 1/2; 1-1/2; (2-41.8). Tote: Win Rs 43; Place: 20; 13; Quinella: 29; Tanala: 505. Fav: Great Pasha (2). 3. Nora Plate : Affability (Shroff) 1; Starsky 2; Tobler 3. Won by: SH; 5; (1-25.6). Tote: Win Rs 22; Place: 11; 11; 19; Quinella: 15; Tanala: 91. Fav: Starsky (1). 4. Starwit Plate: Quick Decision (Aadesh) 1; Valid Appeal 2; Crown Dream 3. Not run: Courraggio (10). Won by: 4; 3/4; (2-9.6). Tote: Win Rs 39; Place: 17; 14; 25; Quinella: 57; Tanala: 511. Fav: Valid Appeal (7). 5. W. Buckley Stakes: Anagram (Kader) 1; Ocean Breeze 2; Sunny Sez 3. Not run: Twist Afleet (7). Won by: 3-1/2; SH; (1-55.4). Tote: Win Rs 16; Place: 12; 27; 21; Quinella: 89; Tanala: 478. Fav; Anagram (9). 6. Governor’s Trophy: Zephyr Bay (McCullagh) 1; Dominant Force 2; Super Sunrise 3. Won by: 1-3/4; 2-1/4; (2-37.4). Tote: Win Rs 18; Place: 13; 14; 23; Quinella: 33; Tanala: 90. Fav: Zephyr Bay (5). 7. Y. M. Chaudhry Memorial Million:Queenscliff (M. Narredu) 1; Noble Opinion 2; Iceberg 3. Won by: 4; Nk; (1-12.2).Tote: Win Rs 44; Place: 13; 10; 12; Quinella: 34; Tanala: 165. Fav: Noble Opinion (1). 8. Mulberry Plate, Div I: Heaven Sent (Mansoor) 1; Bonjour Tristesse 2; Flirtatious 3. Won by: 5; 1/2; (1-26.8). Tote: Win Rs 112; Place: 26; 14; 32; Quinella: 134; Tanala: 8,513. Fav: Josh King (1). 9. Backgammon Plate: Champagne Gold (Prakash) 1; Royal Secret 2; Golden Dynasty 3. Won by: 5-1/2; 6-1/2; (1-6.5). Tote: Win Rs 31; Place: 15; 17; 21; Quinella: 43; Tanala: 371. Fav; Champagne Gold (4). 10. Red Success Plate, Div-II: Amorous Warrior (Prakash) 1; Amber Eyes 2; Vengeance 3. Not run: Devil’s Fire (10). Won by: 3/4; 1-1/4; (1-14.3). Tote: Win Rs 46; Place: 17; 25; 12; Quinella: 194; Tanala: 659. Fav: Vengeance (4).11. Red Success Plate, Div-I:Come Prima (Ruzaan) 1; Pot Magic 2; Great Magician 3. Won by: 3/4; 1-3/4; (1-14.2). Tote: Win Rs 30; Place: 15; 105; 50; Quinella: 1,085; Tanala: 33,078. Fav: Come Prima (2). Jackpot: Rs 3,6397; (C) Rs 4,240. Treble: (i) Rs 666; (ii) Rs 87; (iii) Rs 333.

   
 

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