Ranjit Singh in 2nd spot
Paes wins first title of the year
Arun Lal spoils Bagan party
Md. Sp. set to come under UB fold
Rakhi Sangha enter both semi-finals
May Day results

Calcutta, May 2 
Prom Meesawart kept the defence of his Asia-Pacific junior golf title on course by finishing atop the leader-board after the first round of the 22nd edition of the meet. In blustery conditions at the RCGC, a three-over-par 75 did the trick today for the Thai but, with several players breathing down his neck, the pressure will now be squarely on him to do the front-running and end up triumphs as he did at Myanmar last year.

A stroke behind Meesawart is local lad Ranjit Singh, son of Asian Games gold-medallist Lakshman.

Thailand�s Ronnacha Jamnong, the runner-up at Myanmar, shares the third spot with compatriot Noppakorn Suvanich with 77 while Ashok Kumar of India is in fifth position with a round of 78.

Meesawart had one birdie on out nine and three on the return trip but he spoilt all that by dropping shots on seven holes. Ranjit, who is the RCGC captain, had one birdie and bogies on the seventh, eighth, ninth, 13th and 18th.

Thailand lead in the team championship with a cumulative score of 232. They are followed by Korea (240), India (244), Chinese Taipei (252), Singapore (263) and Malaysia (266).

A total of 67 players in the boys� A and B groups teed-off today. Competition in the boys� C and D groups and the four girls� groups begin tomorrow. Among those teeing off will be six-year-old Sahil Dewan of Delhi and Ye Myat Win, an eight-year-old from Myanmar.    

Calcutta, May 2 
The wait is over for Leander Paes. The world�s top-ranked doubles player of 1999 won his maiden title this year when he and Dutchman Jan Siemerink came up trumps in the $100,000 Bermuda Open.

According to information received here, the top-seeded duo dismissed South Africans Jeff Coetzee and Brent Haygarth 6-3, 6-2 in the final Sunday.

In Mahesh Bhupathi�s absence, Paes has struggled to win matches despite trying several partners. Be it Byron Black, Sebastien Lareau, Nicolas Lapentti or Wayne Arthurs, Paes has not progressed beyond Round 2 in any tournament. Success finally came in left-handed Siemerink�s company.

Even though it was a Challenger event, the field at Bermuda was as strong as some of the ATP Tour events � the reason being there was just one Tour meet last week (Barcelona Open). The title was worth Paes and Siemerink 80 points and $6,200.

Paes and Siemerink had last year advanced to the title-round of a Tour meet in The Netherlands, but the final was rained off. The two are scheduled to continue their partnership at the $325,000 US Men�s Claycourt championship in Orlando.

This meet also marks the return of Bhupathi after a five-month lay-off to repair an injured shoulder. He is due to play doubles only, having been advised to be off singles for at least six more weeks.

Paes has got a direct entry to the singles draw of the $325,000 Orlando meet, and is due to meet Belgian qualifier Xavier Malisse. If he wins, Paes will meet the winner of the clash between second seed Jan Michael Gambill and Ramon Delgado.    

Calcutta, May 2 
Arun Lal spoilt Mohun Bagan�s party yesterday with an unbeaten 144 that saw East Bengal lift the P. Sen Trophy. A win for Mohun Bagan in the final would have had them clinching all five senior division titles in local cricket, a feat that has never been achieved before. The thousand-odd supporters who turned up at the Eden were almost sure they would be witness to a little piece of history when their team rattled up 269 in 50 overs.

That is, till Lal butted in. Coming in at 31 for two, the 45-year-old former Test opener took the fight to the enemy camp with an innings of class and character on a slow turner where stroke-making was difficult. Yet the 144 came off just 139 deliveries with 12 boundaries. East Bengal reached the target with four balls to spare.

Lal, who added 71 for the third wicket with Gautam Shome, took on Mohun Bagan�s most potent weapon, Utpal Chatterjee, taking eight boundaries off him. The Bengal skipper went for 50 runs in his 10 overs.

�I knew that was the key. Utpal always manages to finish with the right bowling figures and it rubs off on the the rest of the team,� Lal said this evening. He also indicated this may well be his last innings in local cricket. �I, of course, have a few months to take a decision and so I don�t want to rush things,� he added.

Earlier, Rohan Gavaskar picked up five wickets but Mohun Bagan still managed a good total thanks to the early momentun provided by Laxmi Ratan Shukla who made 84.    

Mumbai, May 2 
After acquiring stakes in East Bengal and Mohun Bagan, the UB Group is consolidating its hold in the Bengal football arena by acquiring a stake in Mohammedan Sporting.

Though details of the deal with Mohammedan Sporting is not known, officials hinted that the group is willing to pick nearly 50 per cent stake in the club.

Explaining the reason behind the move, UB Group chairman Vijay Mallya said the company felt there was a strong potential in football despite the overwhelming popularity of cricket in India.

�Cricket may be popular in the country but football has also got very good following in West Bengal, Kerala and Goa,� Mallya said.

One official said while East Bengal is presently endorsing the brand King Fisher and Mohun Bagan McDowell, Mohammedan Sporting may promote the Bagpiper brand.

Mohammedan Sporting had earlier received Rs 25 lakh as sponsorship money from the UB Group before the National League qualifying tournament.

Club officials in Calcutta could not be contacted.    

Calcutta, May 2 
Rakhi Sangha entered the semi-finals in both sections of the 10th state youth basketball meet conducted by 1923 Chhatra Samity.

They edged Hooghly 41-39 in the boys� quarter final and their girls trounced Hooghly 21-3.

Burdwan and 1923 Chhatra Samity were the other semi-finalists in the boys� category and those to have made the cut in the girls� division were Burdwan and South 24 Parganas.

The remaining semi-final berth in the boys� section will go to the winners of BTA and Barisha AC while either Birbhum or BBYS will make the cut in the girls� division.

Schools cricket

Saifee Hall will meet Calcutta Boys and Scottish Church will face Ballygunge Government in tomorrow�s pre-quarter final matches of the Parle-G CAB inter-school under-19 cricket meet.

Others to have reached the pre-quarters are Mohammed Jaan, Shyambazar AV, Jadavpur High, Naktala High, Don Bosco (Park Circus), St James, La Martiniere and South Point.

SER champions

South Eastern Railway emerged overall champions in the All India RPF sports meet held in Kaharagpur recently.

The South Eastern men�s football team defeated North Frontier 2-1 in the final and the women�s crown went to Eastern Railway who beat South Eastern by a solitary goal.    

The victory of the Ivor Fernandes-trained Kargil, in the Air Supreme Plate, brought down curtain on the Mumbai winter racing season on Monday.

The 55 Day season, as usual, most popular among the Calcutta turfites, saw its favourite jockey C. Rajendra emerging as a runaway champion. B. Prakash was second.The tussle for the trainers� championship was a close affair. However, Dallas Todywalla scraped through with a slender margin of one point when the contest concluded on April 29. M.A.M. Ramaswamy was the single leading owner during the season.


(With inter-state dividends)

1. Dancing Legend Plate 1,600m: (2-1-6) Forest Fire (Daniel) 1; Rebounding Ray 2; Howard House 3. Won by: 5; Dist; (1-39.5). Tote: Win Rs 20; Place: 13; 35; Quinella: 52; Tanala: 348. Fav: Forest Fire (2).

2. Portrait Attachment Plate 1,600m: (2-4-6) Mujahedin (Rupesh) 1; Fine Arrow 2; Millennium Mover 3. Won by: Hd; 2-3/4; (1-43.3). Tote: Win Rs 117; Place: 28; 24; 27; Quinella: 241; Tanala: 2,211.

Fav: Place De Ville (1).

3. Blaze The Track Plate 1,100m: (7-1-2) Free Gold (P. Sandeep) 1; Mister Money 2; Agni Sikha 3. Won by: 1-1/4; 1-1/4; (1-8.6). Tote: Win Rs 31; Place: 18; 27; 19; Quinella: 173; Tanala: 692. Fav: Free Gold (7).

4. Swift Foot Plate 1,200m: (9-6-7) Zuhaak (C. Rajendra) 1; Bachelor 2; Begonia 3. Won by: 1; Hd; (1-14.3). Tote: Win Rs 90; Place: 22; 15; 28; Quinella: 103; Tanala: 914. Fav: Bachelor (7).

5. Shandaar Plate 1,200m: (9-4-5) Leit Motif (C. Rajendra) 1; My Solitaire 2; Addab 3. Won by: 1-1/4; 1/2; (1-13.7). Tote: Win Rs 77; Place: 24; 32; 38; Quinella: 180; Tanala: 3,988. Fav: Akhnoor (6).

6. Beat The Clock Plate 1,100m: (14-13-1) Princess Xena (S. M. Johnson) 1; Piccolina 2; Absolute Hit 3. Won by: 2; Nk; (1-7.6). Tote: Win Rs 29; Place: 12; 21 19; Quinella: 91; Tanala: 356. Fav: Princess Xena (14).

7. Air Supreme Plate 1,400m: (2-4-5) Kargil (B. Prakash) 1; Duke Of Albany 2; Stolichnaya 3. Won by: 3/4; 2-3/4; (1-26.5). Tote: Win Rs 32; Place: 15; 17; 28; Quinella: 51; Tanala: 426.

Jackpot: Rs 33,596; (C) 6,719.

Treble: (i) 3,511; (ii) 1,422.    


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