Easy for top seeds
India cautious
Vijayan’s fate in balance
Shabana to meet Arjama in final
Police AC win
Maneka moots safe home for aged horses

Jamshedpur, June 21: 
Seeded players made short work of their unfancied opponents in the first round of The Telegraph Schools’ Chess Championship, the Jamshedpur leg of which got underway at the J.R.D. Tata Sports Complex today.

Horlicks are the co-sponsors of the meet and the top five from this leg will qualify for the final round to be held in Calcutta.

The three Fide rated players — Pratik Sengupta (SE Rly Mixed English Medium School, Chakradharpur), Rohan Vijay Shandilya (Sri Ranganath HS, Munger) and Abhishek Das (Bharat Sevashram) — won their games easily.

Late entrant Sagar Mukherjee, four-years-and-nine-months-old, became the youngest boy participant. The SE Rly Mixed English Medium School student justified his inclusion with a win over Sreedipta Mitra.

Anirban Kundu of Loyola School, another youngster, beat P.G.V. Sagar. The youngest girl contestant — Aparajita Bhaduria of Sacred Heart Convent School — went down to Tiyas Moitra.

Following four late entries, the number of participants went up to 254. The meet was inaugurated by C.D. Kamath, Managing Director, Tata Refractories Limited. The Guest of Honour was Arjuna awardee Amar Singh.

Coca-Cola will provide complimentary soft drinks to the participants every day.

RESULTS (top 10 boards)

K.V.S. Kartikeya (0) lost to Pratik Sengupta (1); Rohan Vijay Shandilya (1) bt Vishnu Agarwal (0); Vineet Mittal (0) lost to Abhishek Das (1); Satish Kumar (1) bt Sourodeep Biswas (0); Saurav Kumar Singh (0) lost to Sudipto Dasgupta (1); Akash Kusum (1) bt Nakul Mitta (0); Anurupa Dey Munshi (0) lost to Anirban Pati (1); Pratik Nishant (0) lost to Ananya Chakraborty (1); Kavita Singh (0) lost to Arin Biswas (1); Varun Anant (1) bt Paiker Zakaria (0).    

Calcutta, June 21: 
India’s soccer campaign in the Merdeka Cup in Kuala Lumpur starts tomorrow when they take on the Malaysian Under-23 team.

Coach Sukhwinder Singh sounded worried about his defensive options in the absence of Deepak Mondal and Ratan Singh, saying he has “limited resources”.

“S. Dhanesh will partner Mahesh Gawli as central defender with Sur Kumar Singh and Daljit Sing manning the flanks,” he said from the team hotel today.

He added that caution will be the watchword as the Malaysians are unknown entities. “We know, expectations are high after the pre-World Cup matches but we are not under pressure.

“There are two ways of looking at it. One, it puts you under pressure and two, it makes you more responsible. We feel that we are a more responsible lot now and aware of our duties,” the coach added. “Also, the boys have promised to give off their best, irrespective of who they play, and they know they have a reputation to protect.”

The coach said there would be no change to his starting midfield line-up of Rennedy Singh, Jules Alberto, Jo Paul Ancheri and Khalid Jamil.

In attack, I. M. Vijayan is certain to start and his partner will be picked from Hardeep Gill, Mohammed Najeeb and Alvito D’Cunha.

The Malaysian Under-23 team, according to information received here, has beaten their senior national team twice, 4-3 and 2-1, recently.


Calcutta & New Delhi, June 21: 
I. M. Vijayan is the most notable absentee on the list of 50 players granted inter-state transfer for the forthcoming football season.

The player failed to produce satisfactory transfer documents after a stint with a Bangladesh club last year, following which he was fined Rs 50,000 by the All India Football Federation (AIFF).

However, complications don’t end there, and though Vijayan has sought a transfer in favour of East Bengal from FC Kochin, he is yet to get the green signal.

The AIFF, clearly, is not very sure of what step to take and has allowed Vijayan to play for the country. However, the striker can’t play for a club till the issue is resolved.

“It may take some time before the executive committee takes a decision,” said AIFF secretary Alberto Colaco from Goa today. “We have decided to allow him to play for the country and before he starts playing for any club, a clear picture will emerge.”

That gives the AIFF some breathing space as India’s international commitments are likely to keep Vijayan away from club football for some time.

Mahindra biggest gainers

Coming to those granted tranfers, a quick look reveals Mumbai’s Mahindra United as the biggest gainers despite failing to rope in Churchill Brothers’ Mahesh Gawli. The India defender was all set to join the Mumbai outfit and reportedly signed transfer documents too, but Churchill managed to snatch him back at the last moment.

Mahindra, seventh in the recent National Football League, have increased their budget to over Rs 1 crore and roped in several internationals including midfielders Khalid Jamil (from Air India) and Jules Alberto (Salgaocar), and defender Sur Kumar Singh (East Bengal).

The biggest losers are FC Kochin. Financial crises in the Kerala club has led to the exodus of all their star players. India captain Jo Paul Ancheri has joined East Bengal for Rs 18 lakh to become the highest paid Indian player.

Vijayan, though yet to be cleared, has also made clear that he doesn’t want to stay with the Kochi club.

To add to Kochi’s woes, Liberians Sunday Seah (goalkeeper-cum-striker) and attacker Eugene Gray have moved to Salgaocar of Goa.

Indian Telephone Industries (ITI), Bangalore, coached by the fromer ‘Bade Mian’ of the Calcutta Maidan, Mohammed Habib, have recruited ten, the maximum number of outstation players.

ITI now looks like a reunion of former TFA players, mainly from East Bengal and Mahindra United. Six former TFA players from East Bengal, including former international Carlton Chapman have joined the Bangalore club.

From Mahindra United, two former TFA players, midfielders Andrew Lewis and Abhay Kumar, have joined ITI. Besides, ITI have also snatched 1998 Bangkok Asiad midfielder Shamsi Reza and striker Manjit Singh from Mahindra United.


Mahindra United: Sur Kumar Singh, Naseem Akhtar (East Bengal), Jules Alberto (Salgaocar), Khalid Jamil, Shabbir Ali Mondal (Air India), M. Suresh, Naushad Pari (Mohun Bagan) and Jeevan Moraes (Dempo S.C.).

ITI: Carlton Chapman, Sheikh Sanjib, Trijit Das, Zaheer Abbas, Raghui Singh, Amandeep Singh (all East Bengal), Abhay Kumar, Andrew Lewis, Manjit Singh and Shamsi Reza (all Mahindra United).

Salgaocar FC: Akshay Das (East Bengal), Kalyan Choubey (Mohun Bagan), Sunday Seah, Eugene Grey (FC Kochin), Muralidharan (HAL Bangalore) and Peter Gomes (ITI Bangalore).

East Bengal: I.M. Vijayan, Jo Paul Ancheri (FC Kochin), Kaustuv Ghosh (Churchill).

Mohun Bagan: Ajay Singh, Uday Konar (Churchill), Rishi Kapoor (ITI), Surojit Chatterjee (Salgaocar), Bungo Singh (Air India), Rajesh Pandey (Mahindra United).


Calcutta, June 21: 
Arjama Ghosh and Shabana Parveen will meet in the cadet girls’ final at the CCD table tennis championships.

At the Khudiram Anushilan Kendra today, Arjama beat Jaita Pushilal 21-5, 21-14, while Shabana tamed Poulami Ghosh 21-8, 21-6.

The Patterson Memorial inter-school meet will be held from July 6 to 10. Entries should reach the BTTA office by June 30.

State kabaddi

Eastern Railway women today reached the final of the state senior kabaddi knockout meet.

In their semi-final at the West Bengal Kabaddi Association ground they beat Habra KA 65-18. In the men’s knockout quarter final West Bengal Police beat Chandannagore DKA 43-19.

Two ousted

Two players of Calcutta Rangers Club were marched out of their IFA league fourth division league match versus Star Sporting Club at the Taltala ground. Taltala went on to win 4-2. Thrown out were Barry Williams and Allan Bell.    

Midnapore, June 21: 
Police Athletic Club made best use of a penalty award in beating Food Corporation of India by a solitary goal in their IFA Shield cluster match at Aurobindo Stadium here today.

The penalty was awarded in the 88th minute of th match when FCI stopper Debabrata Das handled the ball. Anup Kumar Saha converted the penaltyto give a final verdict in the dull encounter. Police AC take on Kidderpore tomorrow.


Calcutta, June 21: 
A safe home for the aged, abandoned and retired horses was uppermost on her mind when Maneka Gandhi, Union minister for social justice and empowerment met the representatives of Turf Authorities of India (TAI) and jockeys in New Delhi yesterday, according to a TAI delegate.

She was prepared to contribute a fund of Rs 25 lakh from the ministry and also the required plot of land for the purpose. The animal rights activist also threatened stringent action against trainers/owners who abandoned their horses, said the source.

She also voiced her concern about the existing stabling facilities, inadequate room for horses travelling in floats, and the widespread usage of steroids by trainers. She directed that the new stables must measure 12 ft x 12 ft with adequate provision for ventilation and protection from heat. The floats, too, must have ample room for horses to have free movement and also to raise and lower their heads. She also directed that the turf authorities must ensure the travel time, rest period, workouts, food, water and other provisions for the comfort of horses undertaking long journey.

To check the illegal import and use of stroids by trainers on horses, Maneka informed the TAI representative that the government-appointed inspectors will do the random testings. There should be no use of steroids without veterinary consent.

The code of whipping the horses by jockeys was also approved in the meeting. Only the licensed jockeys henceforth be permitted to carry the whip. Jockeys will be permitted to whip only eight times in a race. This apart, barring the forehand and the backhand position suggested by the TAI in their rules of racing, whips raised beyond shoulder height, may invite penal action. The penalty for the first offence starts from Rs 1000 and increases by multiples of Rs 1,000 until the third offence. The whip is liable to be withdrawn thereafter for rest of the season. If the offence is committed in the last week of the season, the withdrawal will be carried forward to the next meeting.


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