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13-gold haul by Indians

New Delhi: Indian powerlifters bagged 39 medals, including 13 gold and set a new asian record at the five-day Asian powerlifting championships at Almaty, Kazakhstan, that were held from April 30 to May 4. According to an Asian Powerlifting Federation release on Thursday, Harinder Pal Singh set an Asian record in the bench press event when he cleared 132 kg in the 60-kg class. The Indian women finished first runners-up, while the men were second runners-up. Besides the 13 gold, the 48-member Indian contingent came away with 16 silver and 10 bronze medals.

Rugby final, soccer-style

Melbourne: This year’s Rugby Union World Cup final may be decided by a soccer-style shootout involving 10 players in a drop-goal competition, the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) said on Thursday. The International Rugby Board’s tournament manual and participation agreement, signed by all 20 competing teams, sets out the new formula to resolve tied matches from the quarter finals onwards, ARU spokesman Strath Gordon said. The 48-match tournament opens in Sydney on October 10 when champions Australia host Argentina at the Olympic stadium.

India open vs Uzbekistan

Kuala Lumpur: India will play Uzbekistan June 9 as the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) rescheduled women’s championship which will now kick off on June 8 in Thailand. AFC announced special guidelines for teams entering Thailand to guard against SARS virus. The championship which was to start April 17 was postponed due to the outbreak of SARS.

India will start their first round robin league match on June 9 and will play seven-time Asian champions China on June 11 and Vietnam, other partner in group C, June 13.

The AFC has finalised new dates in consultation with the Football Association of Thailand and with the confirmation from the ministry of health that SARS in Thailand is under control, said AFC general secretary Peter Velappan in a release issued from AFC headquarters here.

Fulham extend Inamoto stay

London: Fulham’s Japan midfielder Junichi Inamoto has extended his loan spell until the end of next season, the Premier League club said on Thursday.

The 23-year-old, who is still registered with former club Gamba Osaka, joined Fulham after some fine performances at last year’s World Cup following a season on loan at Arsenal. After a bright start, including a hattrick against Bologna in the Intertoto Cup final, Inamoto struggled with an ankle injury and failed to secure a first-team place in the latter stages of the season.

Batigol not to return

Mexico City: Argentine striker Gabriel Batistuta discarded the possibility of making an international comeback on Wednesday.

“My goodbye to the national team is forever and it makes me want to cry when I say it, because it represented a great deal in my sporting life,” he told the Mexican media in a videoconference.

Rooney’s cyber date

Liverpool: Everton’s teenage sensation Wayne Rooney may have scored one of the season’s best goals, but one fan is determined to find out whether or not he helps his mum with the washing-up.

The 17-year-old, who has been banned by club boss David Moyes from talking to the media, has agreed to take part in a question-and-answer session via the Internet organised by his club’s website.

n Basketball, NBA play-offs: Live from 8 am on STAR Sports n Soccer, Spanish League: Highlights, from 3.30 pm on STAR Sports n Cricket, Australia in West Indies: Fourth Test, Day I, live from 7.30 pm on ESPN


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