Callejon to join Hamsik in China?

first_img Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £11.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit: Napoli forward Jose Callejon could reunite with Marek Hamsik and Rafa Benitez at Chinese club Dalian Yifang in January, it is claimed. The Spaniard has been a virtual ever-present at the San Paolo since his move to Napoli from Real Madrid in the summer of 2013. However, his contract expires at the end of the season and President Aurelio De Laurentiis has already made it clear that he will not match the winger’s salary demands.  Now, Il Mattino reports the 32-year-old might follow in Hamsik’s footsteps and join Dalian this winter – providing they come up with a similar bid. If no deal is agreed in January, Callejon could still be on his way once the season concludes in May. Dalian are also managed by Benitez, who was in charge of Napoli between 2013 and 2015.last_img read more

Won’t quit, Games will be best ever: Kalmadi

first_imgCommonwealth Games (CWG) Organising Committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi on Friday ruled out his resignation in the face of allegations of corruption and said that the 2010 event would be the best ever. Speaking to the media after unveiling the medals for CWG, Kalmadi said that all arrangements for the October event would be ready in time.  CWG OC chairman Suresh Kalmadi”There is no question of quitting. We are doing a great job. We will organise the best Games ever,” said Kalmadi, refusing to take moral responsibility for the corruption allegations that have overshadowed the Games. He said he would quit after the Games only if Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Indian Olympic Association asked him to. Kalmadi admitted that several stadia had problems. “Some of the venues are still to get ready. We and the Commonwealth Games Federation are looking into it. We hope the stadia will be in tip-top condition very soon,” he said. Kalmadi sought to steer clear of the concerns raised in the CVC report. “The CVC report is on the construction (of stadia) and not on the Organising Committee,” he argued. The Organising Committee chief sought the media’s help to make the Games a success. “The Games are a major responsibility and can’t happen without the media’s support,” he pleaded. India, Kalmadi said, had bright prospects in the Games. “Last time, we got 50 medals and came fourth. This time, we are expecting 70 medals and hope to come at least third,” he said. He informed that the prime minister had allocated Rs 700 crore for the training of players and the “results would show in the medals’ tally”. Lalit Bhanot, secretary general of the Organising Committee, said 5,539 gold, 4,818 silver and 4,529 bronze medals had been ordered for the Games.advertisementlast_img read more

Stephen Fleming biography revives Aushim Khetrapal’s match-fixing woes

first_imgEPISODE 2: Fleming has Khetrapal on the backfootAushim Khetrapal protests his innocence a little too loudly. “I am off sports. I am into films and production, which are more exciting. Stephen Fleming has made the charges only to gain publicity for his book.They are rubbish,” he rants. It was pure,EPISODE 2: Fleming has Khetrapal on the backfootAushim Khetrapal protests his innocence a little too loudly. “I am off sports. I am into films and production, which are more exciting. Stephen Fleming has made the charges only to gain publicity for his book.They are rubbish,” he rants. It was pure deja vu for 42-year-old Khetrapal, who in his new avatar as actor-cum producer still cannot shake off allegations of cricket match fixing which had made him more famous than a stuttering Bollywood career ever could.In 1999, former England all-rounder Chris Lewis and New Zealand captain Fleming separately alleged that sports promoter Khetrapal had offered them Pound 300,000 to act as conduits to fix an England-New Zealand Test match in Manchester. At the time, Khetrapal, who ran Radiant Sports Management, had called a press conference and vehemently denied the allegations to clear his name. Five years on, in 2004, it was virtually a repeat performance or as he would probably want it known, Khetrapal: The Sequel. In a story that made international headlines, Richard Boock’s biography of Fleming, Balance of Power, recounts the incident featuring the sports promoter and names names. At a hastily convened press meet in Delhi, Khetrapal stuck to the same tune. Khetrapal maintains he met Fleming in the bar of the Holiday Inn in Leicester and again the next morning and left behind his numbers and visiting card.Fleming’s account of the meeting states that Khetrapal claimed there were people he could call all over the world to give insider information on cricket. He offered to pay the cricketer Pound 200,000 upfront and another Pound 100,000 within a year if he joined the syndicate.”Enough is enough. It is time I brought out my side of the story and I intend to publish my book to counter all these charges,” Khetrapal exclaims.”Khetrapal said he would pay me Euro 200,000 straight up.”Stephen Fleming, in his biography Balance Of PowerWaving a dogeared, spiral bound manuscript titled I Dare, Khetrapal promises that a book is coming, written in record time. “It contains episodes of match-fixing, and the row over sponsorship and telecast rights.”Brushing aside threats of legal action, the publishers of Fleming’s book have said they were okay with what has been published. Publisher Kevin Chapman and managing director Hodder Moa Beckett said that Balance Of Power had undergone the regular legal checks. “We did not think it was particularly problematic from the legal point of view,”Chapman was quoted as saying. “Stephen has been incredibly consistent … He recorded it all at the time and took good advice.”The controversy has its origins in August 1999 when Khetrapal says he went to England to organise a benefit match for Punjab Cricket Association secretary M.P. Pandove and met Fleming as the Kiwis were due to tour India. advertisementDeja vu for Aushim KhetrapalKhetrapal also claims that before this, he had met a news agent called Kamlesh Patel who fixed the meeting with Lewis, whom Khetrapal invited to act as coordinator for a benefit match which would feature either an England XI or a Rest of the World team.Lewis’ story, later sold to tabloid News of the World for Pound 40,000, was, again, different. He alleged that Khetrapal had tried to persuade him to throw the Manchester Test and asked him to offer similar amounts to England cricketers Alec Stewart and Alan Mullaly for dropping catches and bowling wides respectively. When Lewis refused Khetrapal, said the paper, he contacted Fleming. Five years on, other facts have come to light. Travelling on the same flight to London with Khetrapal and staying in the same hotel in Leicester was Mumbai-based film financier Jagdish Sodha. Sodha’s name featured prominently in the recent corruption case involving Kenyan cricket captain Maurice Odumbe, who was then banned. Neither Sodha nor Khetrapal deny knowing each other.”Yes, I was there. But I was on business,” said Sodha from Mumbai. The ICC’s Anti-Corruption and Security Unit detectives, who revisited the case, charged Sodha with using Khetrapal as a “front” in his attempts to fix players.Says one, “The material evidence was weak. It was one person’s word against the other … therefore, we did not pursue it.” Scotland Yard had also tried to establish links between betting syndicates that had contacted Lewis and those that had dealt with former South African captain Hansie Cronje. They arrested and questioned three Indians based in London, Kamlesh Patel (the same news agent Khetrapal said he had met), Jayendra Patel and Peter Patel, for their alleged role in recruiting England players to fix matches.Khetrapal will wait for Fleming’s book before deciding on his line of action. Does he believe that match fixing exists in cricket? “Let’s not be hypocritical. You know as much as I do what happens,” he says. That is telling.advertisementlast_img read more

Sachin Tendulkar will not boost Congress hopes

first_imgOh, how many times have we heard the boring phrase “don’t mix sports and politics.” Till now, it was only about politicians heading sports federations or leaders using an issue such as Dow Chemicals for pursuing their own agenda.But having witnessed the tumultuous response to Sachin Tendulkar being nominated to the Rajya Sabha, I am convinced we in India specialise in politics itself becoming a sport!Making it to Parliament is a big deal. If you happen to be fighting for a Lok Sabha seat, then money, muscle and political backing play a huge role in the outcome.Obviously, some like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have been lucky enough not to seek the people’s mandate, having chosen the Rajya Sabha route to secure the top job in the country.But I don’t see Sachin adding any value to the Congress, as the party’s popularity is at its nadir. When the Congress fielded Mohammad Azharuddin from Moradabad in the 2009 general elections, it worked. However, the same Azhar was unable to help the Congress in the state assembly polls earlier this year, with the party facing humiliation.Imagine Sachin in the role of a leader seeking votes for the Congress. Here is a man who did not want to captain Team India, aware as he was of his shortcomings as a leader. Has the same man changed so much that he can serve as a brand ambassador for the Congress?As for the theory doing the rounds of Sachin being compensated for not getting Bharat Ratna, nothing could be more stupid. Fame, money and glory, Sachin has got everything from cricket. If at all he wants to play a positive role in politics, then maybe he should retire from the game.advertisementlast_img read more

Dhiraj Nayyar on Montek Singh Ahluwalia’s offer to make tea a national drink

first_imgDhiraj NayyarPlanning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia wants to make tea India’s national drink. According to some surveys, it already is-83 per cent of Indian households apparently consume tea. The Government’s stamp of approval for this relatively innocuous decision, which involves no commitment of expenditure or issuing of tenders,,Dhiraj NayyarPlanning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia wants to make tea India’s national drink. According to some surveys, it already is-83 per cent of Indian households apparently consume tea. The Government’s stamp of approval for this relatively innocuous decision, which involves no commitment of expenditure or issuing of tenders, will take one whole year. Ahluwalia has an explanation. He says the Government wants to make the announcement to coincide with the 212th birth anniversary of Maniram Dewan, Assam’s first tea planter and a revolutionary against British rule, on April 17, 2013. He may as well have made the announcement on April 17, 2012.But the Government of India works by due process. Ahluwalia says he needs to talk to Commerce Minister Anand Sharma. The commerce minister will no doubt want to talk to his bureaucrats. Cumbersome files will pass up and down. It’s quite possible that milk, not tea, will win eventually the coveted title-Amul began lobbying for it shortly after Ahluwalia’s tea announcement. Expect water to enter as a last, but hardly the least, contestant. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, presumably the final arbiter of all things national, will have to make a judgment call. As an MP from Assam, he should rule in favour of tea rather than milk. But lest he be seen making a firm decision, he may leave the matter to another Government.The popularity of tea will certainly survive the UPA’s indecision. Given the dismal state of some other national symbols-the national animal, the tiger, is battling extinction as is the national sport, hockey-tea may yet welcome its narrow escape from a potential kiss of death. The star status of India’s economy, however, is unlikely to survive UPA’s indecision.advertisementThe Government has been quick to respond to messengers of bad news. Chief Economic Adviser Kaushik Basu was admonished for speaking the bitter truth. Standard and Poor’s downgrade of India’s economic outlook from stable to negative was met by a “do not panic” and “we will overcome” response from the finance minister. Words, whether of admonishment or of reassurance, are no longer enough. The Government needs to change the message. It needs to show real progress on passing reformist legislation, on getting the bureaucracy back to taking decisions, and on reining in its runaway expenditure. That is how India will once again become an attractive destination for investment, so crucial for a growth rate of 8-9 per cent.UPA 2’s track record is discouraging. The few major decisions it has taken in the last three years have been the antithesis of reform. The recent decision to enforce a tax amendment with retrospective effect has spooked all investors, not just Vodafone. Frequent decisions to ban the exports of key agricultural commodities like cotton, wheat and onions have hurt farmers. The decision to demarcate large tracts of forest land as no-go areas for mining has led to a serious coal shortage and a crippling power deficit. Ironically, paralysis, if it means status quo, may be a better state of affairs than retrograde policy action.Would someone please give the UPA’s top brass a few cups of strong tea to awaken it from its slumber?last_img read more

Sania was used without even being consulted: Bhupathi

first_imgAdmitting that his pairing with Sania Mirz a in the mixed doubles category would have been the best bet for India in the London Olympics, Mahesh Bhupathi today said that the Indian star player was used without even being consulted.”Absolutely! We have good record. Recently we won the French Open together,” said Bhupathi when asked if he would have liked to play along side Sania in the mixed doubles during the London Games.”She was used without even being consulted as to what her best options are. But I think let her cut it all,” Bhupathi told ‘a news channel’.Sania , after getting a wildcard for the London Olympics on Tuesday, hit out at AITA for treating her as a ‘bait’ in the selection row. She was also critical of Bhupathi and Leander Paes.But Bhupathi said he could completely understand her outburst and stood by her.”Obviously, she issued a very emotional statement and I totally understand where it is coming from and what transpired into the whole thing.”As far as I am concerned, I stand by Sania and think we are the best mixed doubles pair,” insisted Bhupathi.Sania had earlier said that Bhupathi had “sacrificed” his commitment to play with her at the Olympics after their French Open title early this month.”Mahesh Bhupathi has firmly stood by his commitment to play together with his men’s doubles partner, Rohan Bopanna as he genuinely believed it was good for India. However, in the process, he sacrificed the commitment he made to me to try and win an Olympic medal together for India,” Sania had said in her statement yesterday.Sania, however, made it clear that although she preferred Bhupathi, she is ready to partner Paes in the larger interest of the country.Bhupathi, meanwhile, said that he and all his country mates were trying to put behind the controversies and concentrate on the ongoing Wimbledon, which is also the venue for the upcoming Games.”For us, we are actually trying our best to put everything behind us and try to focus on the Wimbledon,” said Bhupathi.advertisementlast_img read more

La Salle fends off Adamson for 3rd straight win

first_imgSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next La Salle trailed majority of the game up until the 4:10 mark of the third when center Ben Mbala scored back-to-back baskets that gave the Green Archers a 50-48 lead.Rivero paced La Salle with 17 points while Santillan finished with 16 points, 14 points in the second half, and 10 boards.Mbala struggled from the field, going 3-of-10, but made up for it from the line going 9-of-12 to put up 15 points to go along with 17 rebounds. Papi Sarr led Adamson with 17 points and 12 boards while Jerrick Ahanmisi also had 17 points. ADVERTISEMENT Palace: Robredo back to ‘groping with a blind vision’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Trump to designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorist groups ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Sol Mercado out for Game 5 of PBA Finals LATEST STORIES MOST READ Argentine bishop appears at court hearing on abuse charges Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ No more menthol cigarettes: New ban on tobacco, vape flavors For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. Adamson was down by four, 69-65, midway through the fourth quarter, but a timely triple from Rob Manalang and two free throws from Jonathan Espeleta put the Soaring Falcons ahead 72-71 with 2:19 left in the game.That slim lead, however, would be the last of the Falcons’ reprieve as Andrei Caracut knocked down a clutch triple that gave the Green Archers a 74-72 lead with 1:48 left in the game.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingSanti Santillan then pushed the dagger through Adamson’s heart with a layup giving La Salle a 76-72 lead with 36 seconds remaining in the game. “This game was a test of our character, not just as individuals but as a team, and it really helped our team,” said Ricci Rivero in Filipino. Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Winter storm threatens to scramble Thanksgiving travel plans Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netDefending champion De La Salle kept Adamson University at bay to come away with an 80-74 victory in the UAAP Season 80 men’s basketball tournament Saturday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.The Green Archers chalked up their third straight win and improved to 8-2 to deny the Soaring Falcons (6-4), who missed a chance to gain a share of second place.ADVERTISEMENT View commentslast_img read more