Real Madrid, Manchester City Clinch: Things To Know

By Aglaia Staff

The first eight matches of the Champions League Group Stage‘s Matchday 4 were played on Tuesday, with 17 goals scored. Real Madrid and Man City made statements, while Manchester United needed late magic.

Here are three things to know about Tuesday’s action.

670px Cristiano Ronaldo %283%29 Real Madrid, Manchester City Clinch: Things To Know

Visit Français : Cristiano Ronaldo lors d’un match entre le Real Madrid et l’UD Almería. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1. Manchester City looks like a real contender without its two best players.

Remember how City lost to Juventus on Matchday 1, and everyone thought it was going to be another season of European failure for the Citizens? Well, City is now in first place in Group D with nine points and earned a spot in the Round of 16 with a convincing 3-1 win at Sevilla on Tuesday. Raheem Sterling scored a fine opener, and City dominated possession on its way to the big win. Without the injured David Silva and Sergio Aguero, City still continues to get results. Watch out for this club as the competition progresses. City is a real threat for the title.

Real Madrid, to the surprise of nobody, is into the Round of 16.

It was another snoozer, really. I mean, it wasn’t as boring as the 0-0 draw on Matchday 3, but you would expect to see plenty of goals when Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Cristiano Ronaldo are on the same pitch. It was Nacho’s first half-goal that gave Real Madrid a 1-0 win and a spot in the knockout stages, but fans wanted more. Regardless of the loss, PSG is still in great shape to advance, and Real Madrid is right where most expected.

United barely gets a massive three points.

Manchester United hadn’t scored in the previous three matches, and it almost didn’t score in this one until Wayne Rooney’s winner 12 minutes from time. Sure things look good for United to advance past the group stage, but until it looks like a team on the pitch and creates chance after chance, the club will continue to be a pretender and not a contender. It will take time for this team to gel especially with Anthony Martial, but there is just this feeling that it doesn’t have what it takes to contend, much less win a trophy.


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Seahawks Rout Broncos; T.V Viewership 111.5 Million

By Aglaia Staff

For the fourth time in five years, the Super Bowl has set a record for the most-watched television event in U.S. history, drawing 111.5 million viewers even though the Seattle Seahawks‘ 43-8 victory over the Denver Broncos wasn’t really competitive.

The ratings record is further evidence of how live events are becoming dependable and valuable properties for broadcast television at a time the audience is fragmenting and ratings for regular entertainment shows continue to fall.

“Big-event television is a great way for people to have a communal event, to talk about it socially and to talk about it as a group,” said Bill Wanger, executive vice president for programming and research at Fox Sports. “You see that in the Super Bowl numbers of the past four or five years. They’ve just gone up to a different level.”

The game also set standards for the most-streamed sports event online and, with 24.9 million tweets, the biggest U.S. live TV event on Twitter.

The Seattle victory eclipsed the 111.3 million viewers who watched the 2012 Super Bowl between the New York Giants and New England Patriots, according to the Nielsen company. Until last year’s game dipped slightly to 108.7 million, the Super Bowl had set ratings records for the previous three years in a row.

“We were a little surprised, absolutely,” Wanger said. The blowout had some at Fox worried that enough people would tune out in the fourth quarter to ruin any chance at a ratings record. So when Percy Harvin ran the opening kickoff of the second half back for a touchdown to give the Seahawks a 29-0 lead, “let’s just say we weren’t popping Champagne bottles,” he said.

While interest didn’t wane on Sunday, that wasn’t the case the last time the Broncos were beaten this badly in a Super Bowl.

Only 39 percent of the U.S. watched Super Bowl XXIV, in which the Broncos lost by 45 points to the San Fransisco 49ers. That’s still the smallest percentage of Americans to watch any Super Bowl since Super Bowl III.

But initial interest in the game — perhaps fueled by its New York-area setting — was high enough to overcome the lopsided score. Ratings for the opening kickoff were 12 percent higher than they were for last year’s game, Fox said. For the New York market, the Super Bowl rating was higher than it was two years ago when the hometown Giants were winning in dramatic fashion.


Fox said an average of 528,000 people watched the live Internet stream of the game, peaking at the end of the third quarter. The number of Super Bowl-related tweets was up from 24.1 million last year.

The moment of peak activity on Twitter came after Harvin’s TD jaunt. Harvin’s run produced a 381,605 tweet per minute average, the company said. The next biggest peaks of activity came when Jermaine Kearse caught a touchdown pass and Malcolm Smith returned an interception for a touchdown.

There was a big boost in people going to Twitter during particularly memorable parts of the game, said Brian Poliakoff, Twitter spokesman.

It was a big night — and day after — for halftime star Bruno Mars, too. Nielsen said an estimated 115.3 million people watched Mars and his guests, the Red Hot Chili Peppers. That makes it the most-watched Super Bowl halftime show ever, eclipsing Madonna’s performance two years ago.

Mars’ album, “Unorthodox Jukebox,” moved into No. 1 on the iTunes album chart on Monday, while his debut “Doo-Wops & Hooligans” is at No. 3. Mars has 11 songs in the top 100 of the iTunes singles chart.

The three biggest moments on Twitter were also the three most talked-about events on Facebook, that social media company said. Fifty million people accounted for more than 185 million game-related interactions on Facebook.

PBS turned to social media last week to promote its airing of “Downton Abbey” against the Super Bowl. The public broadcasting service asked on social media sites whether people wanted to watch drama or the game, and an estimated 6.8 million people watched “Downton Abbey” on Sunday. While that’s down from the season average of 8.6 million, it was 200,000 more people than the British drama had going against the Super Bowl last year.

Fox said that 25.8 million people stuck around after the game to watch the comedy “New Girl” with Prince as guest. The Golden Globe-winning comedy “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” which followed “New Girl,” had 14.8 million viewers.



 Seahawks Rout Broncos; T.V Viewership 111.5 Million
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Everton’s Bryan Oviedo Suffers Double Break Of Leg

By Aglaia Staff

Everton‘s Bryan Oviedo suffered what his manager, Roberto Martínez, said appeared to be a double fracture of his left leg during Saturday night’s FA Cup tie against Stevenage, raising fears about the 23-year-old midfielder’s future.

The injury also dealt a blow to Costa Rica, one of England’s opponents in the group stages of this year’s World Cup. Oviedo, one of his country’s established international stars, slid in for a routine challenge in the 16th minute of the game but his studs appeared to catch in the turf. A rainstorm an hour before kick-off had softened the ground at the Lamex Stadium.

His distressed team-mates immediately called for medical assistance and a stretcher, and Oviedo was taken straight to hospital. Everton were already ahead at the time and went on to win the fourth-round tie 4-0.

“It was very unfortunate,” Martínez said. “There was nothing malicious intended, but unfortunately I think he’s picked up a double fracture. We’ll assess what is the next step for him, but it’s one of those moments which you don’t get many of in football, thankfully, but leaves a bad taste, a bad feeling.

“Bryan has been showing his level this season, the quality that he has, so it’s one of those moments you feel terribly sad for him, because it was a great time in his career with the World Cup coming up. All we want now is for Bryan to fully recover as quickly as he can and make sure he comes back.”

It is hard to believe Oviedo, who has already made 26 appearances for Costa Rica, will regain fitness in time for his country’s match against England in Belo Horizonte on 24 June.

But Martínez, who can become the first manager in the history of the FA Cup to retain the trophy with a different club, said the manner in which his players had refocused after the incident demonstrated their professionalism.

“It was difficult for my players. They had begun brightly, defended well and shown great concentration, so it was a real test for my players. They showed an incredible love for the game by giving no excuses and doing what they needed to do to win the football game.

“That’s a really important ingredient if you want to be successful in this competition, so I’m really pleased with that, excited about the next round and looking forward to the draw.”



 Evertons Bryan Oviedo Suffers Double Break Of Leg
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Masahiro Tanaka Comes To Yankees With Mai Satoda

By Aglaia Staff

With apologies to Hideki Matsui, the Yankees’ signing of Masahiro Tanaka just gave the Bombers a Godzilla-sized ace for their starting rotation, and Gotham’s newest celebrity power couple.


Carmelo and La La, take note.

Lost in all the immediate buzz of the ace righthander Tanaka’s talents coming to the Bronx is the pitcher’s wife, entertainment and pop star Mai Satoda, who is four years her husband’s senior. The 25-year-old Tanaka may be known for his sparkling 24-0 record last year with the Rakuten Golden Eagles and for his split-finger fastball, but Satoda has made her own stamp in the Land of the Rising Sun, with her pop music and TV background.

Satoda, who turns 30 on March 29, has been associated with several musical acts, including the all-girl pop group Country Musume (which translated means “Country Girls”), which formed in 1999. The group has gone through several incarnations, with Satoda joining in 2002. The band folded in the late 2000s.

During the Tanaka courting process by major league teams, several reports said that Satoda was trying to influence her husband to choose the Dodgers, presumably so she might get a foothold in the Hollywood scene.

But Hiroshi Kanda, an editor with Kyodo News who covered Matsui’s Yankee tenure, said that Satoda was more a “girl-next-door” talent who “cares more about Tanaka than her career.”

“She is one of the most beloved baseball wives (in Japan),” Kanda said. “But I don’t think she’s thinking about her career now.”

That sentiment appeared to be the case last October when Satoda responded to many fans’ concerns about Tanaka’s health following his apparent barehanded catch during the playoffs.

“He’s OK because the ball made a hop before he caught it,” Satoda wrote on her blog. “It wasn’t a direct catch, that would have been scary!”



 Masahiro Tanaka Comes To Yankees With Mai Satoda
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The Top 15 Australian Open Moments

By Aglaia Staff


It’s lucky Marcos Baghdatis doesn’t pay for his own gear. The Cypriot would have had an expensive day in the shop after his 2012 match against Stanislas Wawrinka. Having gone two sets down, he smashed the offending racquet before sitting down in his chair, considering his options and then calmly annihilating three more from his bag.


A battle of attrition was always on the cards when wily veterans Francesca Schiavone and Svetlana Kuznetsova in the fourth round in 2011. But no one could have imagined a 6-4 1-6 16-14 war that lasted four hours and 44 minutes and ended only when Schiavone finally claimed a three-hour final set. It remains the longest women’s grand slam singles match in history.



With his coach Tim Gullickson diagnosed with cancer during the tournament, Pete Sampras bravely took to the court but broke down numerous times throughout an enthralling encounter with Jim Courier. With Sampras weeping openly during the fifth set, Courier showed remarkable compassion by offering to finish the match the next day. Sampras continued, however, and went on to complete a remarkable comeback.



Pat Cash‘s 1987 bid to become the first Aussie to win the Open since 1976 looked dead in the water when Stefan Edberg took a two set lead in the final. Cash fought back to level the match, before the super Swede steadied to claim his second title in Melbourne and exact a bit of revenge for his defeat by Cash in the Davis Cup final the previous month.



It took 27 matches, a crook elbow and a sore back to bring down Roger Federer at the height of his powers in 2005, but Marat Safin finally did it in an epic five-set Australian Open semi-final. Having lost two of the previous three Open finals, Safin endured a Federer fifth-set fightback and needed seven match points, but he finally prevailed before going on to beat Lleyton Hewitt and claim the title.



Jelena Dokic finally conquered some of her injury demons and family affairs when she returned to Grand Slam tennis and reached the quarter-finals in 2009. Her first Grand Slam since 2006 yielded a third-round win over Caroline Wozniacki and it took a determined Dinara Safina three sets to end her dream run.


Australia loves a darling, and Martina Hingis captured our collective imagination when she became the youngest Grand Slam singles winner in the 20th century when she won the Open in 1997 at just 16 years and three months old.



Sadly, the Australian summer of tennis often coincides with extreme weather events. But when mother nature strikes, the world’s elite players invariably put their hands up to help raise money. The sport’s biggest names came together to support the relief effort after the Queensland floods in 2011 and the Boxing Day tsunami in 2005, among others.


 The Top 15 Australian Open Moments
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Only 5000 Tickets For Fans: Tendulkar’s Farewell Test

By Aglaia Staff

It is one of the most anticipated cricket events in India — Sachin’s Tendulkar’s 200th Test match marking his retirement from international cricket. Yet only 5,000 of the 30,000 tickets at Wankhede Stadium will be made available to the public for the Test match which begins on November 14.

Around 17,000 tickets will be distributed to cricket clubs affiliated to the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA), which is hosting the match. Of the remaining, as many as 8,000 tickets will be given “complimentary” to sponsors and government bodies, including the municipality and the police.

300px A Cricket fan at the Chepauk stadium%2C Chennai Only 5000 Tickets For Fans: Tendulkars Farewell Test

Visit Sudhir Kumar Chaudhary,(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cricket fans are disappointed. “Do we need to have contacts to get tickets? 5,000 tickets for the public are much too low for a match like this,” said Chandrakant Rajeshirke, who is keen to watch the match.

Cricket clubs will sell tickets to their own members. We have no way of contacting them for tickets,” said Amod Sathe, another avid cricket fan.

Meanwhile, hectic lobbying is on for complimentary tickets. The police and the municipality have been flooded with phone calls. “I have been getting hundreds of calls every day. People are even dropping in to see me for tickets. I can’t help them and it is difficult to refuse them outright,” said Mayor Sunil Prabhu, who has received an invitation from the MCA to attend the match.

300px Wankhede 2 Only 5000 Tickets For Fans: Tendulkars Farewell Test

Visit Wankhede cricket stadium, Bombay Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Police officers too are facing a similar problem. “People feel that the police can help procure tickets instantly. We have been telling them they should ask the MCA,” said Krishna Prakash, Additional Commissioner of Police (South Region).

Even leaders of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), whose chief Sharad Pawar is currently at the helm of the MCA, are at a loss. “I have been telling people that the MCA does not belong to our party and providing tickets to them is not our job,” said NCP corporator Dhananjay Pisal.

However, the MCA says this has been the practice all along. Cricket clubs have always been given the lion’s share of tickets to sell. And distributing complimentary tickets is also an old tradition. “We have to give complimentary tickets to the agencies that help us in our functioning,” said Ravi Sawant, vice-president.


 Only 5000 Tickets For Fans: Tendulkars Farewell Test
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Anand Seeks Sixth Title As World Chess Championship Begins

By Aglaia Staff

Billed as the most high-profile clash in chess history in more than 40 years between defending champion Viswanathan Anand and challenger Magnus Carlsen of Norway, the World Chess Championship match begins in Chennai on Saturday with the experts divided over who will walk away with the coveted title.

The hype surrounding the match between the ageing five-time champion Anand and 22-year-old world number one Carlsen, comparable to the historic clash between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky in 1972, will come to an end when the two rivals take on each other in the opening game at the Hyatt Regency Hotel on Saturday.

Carlsen to open with white

Carlsen has the advantage of playing white in the opener but that may not count much as both players get six white and black games in this 12-games November 9-28 contest.

Anand has seen similar situations before while Carlsen is playing his first match in a World Championship. So, while the Norwegian enjoys the tag of a favourite, his mannerisms thus far have suggested that he is gullible like any other youngster in a certain sense.

Twirling in his chair, scratching his head while answering questions during the first press conference in Chennai on Thursday, Carlsen gave the impression of someone tense but exuded confidence once the tête-à-tête was over.

Five-time champion Anand

Anand, who has won World Championship matches in 2000, 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2012, is used to open with black pieces in World Championship matches.

Against Vladimir Kramnik of Russia in Bonn in 2008 and against Veselin Topalov of Bulgaria in 2010, Anand had started with black, which is known as a slightly unfavourable colour in the game, and yet won in style. In 2012 though, Anand had white in game one against Boris Gelfand of Israel.

Seeking his sixth title, Anand looked upbeat ahead of the biggest challenge of his life while Carlsen seemed to get the game going. The mind games have just begun and much would unfold once the match starts on Saturday.

Whether Anand’s preparation holds him in good stead or Carlsen will play his typical long games to grind out the reigning world champion Indian will have to be seen.

Anand, the undisputed world champion since 2007, faces a strong challenge from the Norwegian sensation in one of the most awaited and most followed World Chess Championship matches in recent history.

Asked how well he has prepared for the event, Anand said, “I worked as I always did. Couple of months of training and I think I am ready to attack. We will see how it goes but I think I am ready to play. I am really excited to play in my home city. I am looking forward to the match starting.”

Having won five world titles, Anand said his experience could come in handy in the match.

“Obviously, it is one factor among many. I will bring to bear those factors into my game. Definitely it is one of my resources I would like to draw from. We will have to see.”

Carlsen to downplay favourite tag

Carlsen sought to downplay the view of some experts that he will start as favourite in the match.

“I do not know if everyone considers me a favourite but in general I expect to do well in tournaments. If I manage to do well to my abilities and levels, I can win and that will be my mind set here as well,” he said.

For Anand, there is an extra motivation to win the match, according to legendary chess player Garry Kasparov.

“While the world champion has never given any importance to matters of chess history or his legacy, he must know that his entire career will get an extraordinary new dimension should he beat the Norwegian wunderkind against the odds,” he said.

While Anand has this chance of reinventing himself once more, a motivated Carlsen though should know that he will be world champion one day or the other.

“The difference (between us) is that I have been winning tournaments and he (Anand) has been holding on to his title.

It will be an interesting clash between two different ideas of what constitutes the best player in the world,” Carlsen had said.

About the game

In all, 12 games will be played in the match under Classical System in which both players will get 120 minutes for the first 40 moves, 60 minutes for the next 20 and the 15 minutes for the remaining game with an increment of 30 seconds per move effective from the 61st move.

The first to score 6.5 points will win the match and the remaining games will not be played should it happen before the 12th game. The winner will take home 60% of the prize fund.

In case of a tied score after twelve games, games of shorter duration will be played to determine the winner.

However, if the tiebreak stage is reached the winner will get 55% of the total prize at stake.

The players will play two games on the trot followed by a rest day till 10th game and for the last two games, there is rest day after each game. If needed, the tiebreak games will be played on November 28 followed by the closing ceremony.

There is a special illness clause which can delay the match. In case a player reports sick, he has the right to postponement for a day. However, chances of it being used are minimal unless, health wise, something drastically goes wrong for either player.

The match was officially opened on Thursday by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa. The Tamil Nadu Government is the official sponsors of the match and have given a cap of Rs 29 crore as the total budget which is inclusive of a prize fund of around Rs. 14 crores.

Meanwhile, the final preparations for the much-awaited clash were almost done and the players will be behind a glass cube when the first game begins at 3 pm IST on Saturday.

Glass cube was first introduced in the Masters Chess tournament in Bilbao, Spain. The idea is to keep noises from the spectators away from the players. This effective technique does not even let the sound of a huge sneeze sneak in.

The games will be beamed live through internet as well as on Doordarshan’s sports channel. The commentary team has the likes of former world champion Susan Polgar, International Master Lawrence Trent and Tania Sachdev.

share save 171 16 Anand Seeks Sixth Title As World Chess Championship Begins

Rising From The Ashes: Shane Watson Slams Ton For Australia

By Aglaia Staff

300px Alastair cook bowl Rising From The Ashes: Shane Watson Slams Ton For Australia

Visit Alastair Cook, bowling at Adelaide Oval cricket nets (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

hane Watson hit his first century in 25 tests to help Australia move to 307-4 at stumps Wednesday on the first day of the fifth and final Ashes test against England.

Under pressure following his poor form all series with the bat, Watson smashed 25 fours and a six to reach 176, from 247 balls, at The Oval.

“It’s definitely a relief to be able to make a hundred, there’s no doubt about that,” Watson said. “But it was important to be able to bat for a longer period of time in an Ashes test. I’ve not read one thing (of criticism). I know the thing is that if I’m not performing I’d expect people to write things that are not complimentary, but I’ve stayed away from it.

“I’m very critical of myself anyway so I don’t read anything that would compound it.”

Watson batted on after taking a fierce blow to the head from a bouncer by Stuart Broad, was dropped on 104 by Alastair Cook in the slips and overturned an lbw decision to Chris Woakes on 160, before he finally fell to Broad.

Steve Smith was unbeaten on 66 (nine fours, one six 133 balls) as England’s bowlers struggled, James Anderson finishing with the best figures of 2-52.

“It was a long day for us,” Anderson said. “We stuck to our task pretty well as a bowling unit. It was a pretty lifeless pitch and I though Watson played out of his skin.”

Australia won the toss and chose to bat but had to endure a hostile opening spell from Anderson and Broad before Watson hit debutants Woakes and Simon Kerrigan out of the attack.

Warner lasted only 18 minutes before getting an outside edge to Anderson for wicketkeeper Matt Prior to accept the catch.

However, England’s decision to release fast bowlers Steven Finn and Chris Tremlett from its squad and go without experienced backup for the opening quicks backfired when Watson gave the new boys a harsh introduction to test cricket.

Watson hit both Woakes and Kerrigan for six fours, but he also smashed Graeme Swann for a six over the sightscreen and brought up his 50 from 61 deliveries when he nudged a single from Kerrigan.

Australia reached 100 when Watson hit Kerrigan for 18 in the 25th over, forcing England captain Alastair Cook to bring back Broad in a bid to stem the flow of boundaries.

Broad responded with a maiden over, but the century partnership was reached in the final over before lunch when Rogers flicked Broad for three runs through midwicket.

Rogers fell for 23 early in the afternoon session when he edged Swann to Jonathan Trott, who took a low catch at first slip.

Watson was on 91 when he was hit on the back of the head by a Broad bouncer. The blow struck the batsman just below the helmet, but after a two-minute delay he continued.

“I was pretty lucky really,” Watson said. “It got me in a good spot, in the muscles. It certainly got me thinking there was more to worry about than being in the nervous nineties.”

Michael Clarke looked vulnerable throughout his 39-ball innings and was bowled off his pads by Anderson in the 43rd over. In the next over, Watson, having slowed slightly since lunch, reached his first century in 48 attempts with a stroke for three from Anderson.

England then squandered the momentum when Cook dropped Watson after he edged Anderson to first slip.

The debutants returned at the end of the session. Woakes improved significantly, but Kerrigan’s final over before tea began with a rank, head-high full toss that Smith swatted for four.

Anderson acknowledged that Kerrigan had suffered.

“The guys in the dressing room have got a job to do to rally around him and keep his spirits high,” he said. “He’s had a bad day but the other days know what he can do, he’s a quality bowler.”

Watson was diplomatic about Kerrigan’s performance, but said he was surprised by England’s selections.

“I was expecting Tremlett to play,” he said. “He’s had quite a lot of success bowling against us. I was a lot happier than I would have been if I’d had to face a guy who’s 6’8 and bowling balls up into your face.”

In an evening session short on drama, Watson reached his 150 when he flicked Broad to the fine leg boundary and Smith drove Swann for a single to pass 50.

Watson was given out lbw to Woakes in the 82nd over but he referred the call and the decision was reversed – only the second time Watson has overturned an lbw call in nine attempts.

Watson’s luck finally ran out in the 88th over when he holed out to Broad and fell to a brilliant tumbling catch by Kevin Pietersen, although only after an umpire referral for a no ball confirmed Broad’s foot was fractionally behind the crease.

Australia sent in Peter Siddle as nightwatchman and he added an assured 18 not out before stumps.

 Rising From The Ashes: Shane Watson Slams Ton For Australia
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Jim Furyk Leads US PGA as Adam Scott Pulls Back

By Aglaia Staff

Jim Furyk sank long putts on the final two holes to grab a one-stroke lead over fellow American Jason Dufner after Saturday’s third round of the PGA Championship.

Furyk, whose lone major title came at the 2003 US Open, made a 14-foot birdie putt at the 17th hole and sank a 10-foot par putt from the greenside fringe at the 18th to finish a two-under par 68 and stand on nine-under par 201 after 54 holes at Oak Hill Country Club.

“That was big,” Furyk said of his par save. “It’s a nice way to finish the day.”


2743678757 cfa4e77e79 m Jim Furyk Leads US PGA as Adam Scott Pulls Back

Visit Jim Furyk - 90th PGA Championship (Photo credit: James Marvin Phelps)

Dufner was one stroke back on 202 with Sweden’s Henrik Stenson on 203, Swede Jonas Blixt fourth on 204 after the day’s only bogey-free round at 66, and Masters champion Adam Scott sharing fifth with American Steve Stricker on 205.

Defending champion Rory McIlroy and England’s Lee Westwood, seeking his first major title in his 62nd try after a fistful of near misses, were together in seventh on 207.

In his quest for a second major championship Scott fired a two-over par 72 third round to be five-under for the tournament. Marc Leishman and Jason Day are the next best Australians at even par in a tie for 21st.



 Jim Furyk Leads US PGA as Adam Scott Pulls Back
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Virat Kohli’s Superlative Century Propels India To 1-0 Lead

By Aglaia Staff

Virat Kohli cracked a scintillating century as India thrashed minnows Zimbabwe by six wickets in the first cricket one-dayer to take a 1-0 lead in the five match series on Wednesday.

Chasing a modest victory target of 228, India rode on captain Kohli’s 115 as they overhauled the target with 31 balls to spare in what turned out to be a lop-sided contest at the Harare Sports Club.

300px Viratkohli Virat Kohlis Superlative Century Propels India To 1 0 Lead

Visit English: virat kohli (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kohli, who hit a spectacular century against West Indies while leading the side in the recently concluded Tri-Series, again led by example to notch up his 15th ODI hundred as he guided the team home after the early dismissals of the two openers.

Ambati Rayudu’s much awaited international debut also turned out to be an impressive one as he struck a responsible unbeaten 63 off 83 balls and more importantly added 159 runs for the third wicket with his skipper.

This was after openers Shikhar Dhawan (17) and Rohit Sharma (20) were dismissed early.

On a seaming track, Kohli showed his class and temperament as he brought about his 100 off only 102 balls with 11 hits to the fence. When he got a little bit of width outside the off-stump, he was quick to play the cover-drive while he rocked back to square cut offie spinner Prosper Utseya through the point region.

Rayudu proved to be the ideal foil as he didn’t play any risky shots and was content in rotating the singles and giving bulk of the strike to his skipper.

The maturity was also evident after he completed his century scampering home for a single with a push towards cover region. There was no exalted celebration after reaching the milestone just a quite acknowledgement of the applause.

He celebrated his landmark with a big six but was soon holed out in the deep off Utseya’s bowling but India by then were within sniffing distance of the target. His 115 came off 108 balls with 13 fours and a six.

Earlier, Zimbabwe scored 227 for seven riding on Pakistan-born opener Sikandar Raza’s gutsy 82 and a 43-run cameo from Elton Chigumbura. Leg-spinner Amit Mishra made a successful return to limited overs cricket with figures of three for 43.

The next match will be played at the same venue on July 26.


 Virat Kohlis Superlative Century Propels India To 1 0 Lead
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