Virat Kohli To Lead India In 1st Two ODIs vs The Windies. Rishabh Pant Included In 14-Member Squad

Virat Kohli is back as the captain of the Indian One-day International team for the first two matches of the series against the Windies. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Thursday announced the Indian team for the first two ODIs of the five-match series. Virat Kohli is back in command as India’s skipper after taking a break during the recently concluded Asia Cup. The first ODI will be played on October 21 in Guwahati at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium, whereas the second game will be hosted by the YS Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam on October 24. Both the ODIs will be day-night fixtures.

One inclusion that grabs eyeballs is that of young wicket-keeper and swashbuckling left-handed batsman Rishabh Pant, who will be seen playing second fiddle to first-choice stumper MS Dhoni.

Other notable inclusion is that of left-arm pacer Khaleel Ahmed, who performed exceedingly well in the Asia Cup, which India won after beating Bangladesh in the final.

However, Dinesh Karthik has been rested to give Pant a chance. Ravindra Jadeja, who had replaced the injured Hardik Pandya in the Asia Cup, has been given another ODI lifeline by the selectors.

After not finding a place in India’s Test squad against the West Indies, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan return as openers in the Kohli-led squad.

Kedar Jadhav and Hardik Pandya couldn’t return to the squad after getting injured during the Asia Cup in UAE.

Squad (first two ODIs): Virat Kohli (capt), Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, MS Dhoni (wk), Rishabh Pant, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Khaleel Ahmed, Shardul Thakur, KL Rahul.

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Shahid Afridi Lauds Australia’s “Top Effort” As They Manage A Draw vs Pakistan In 1st Test

Opening batsman Usman Khawaja struck a fabulous century and helped Australia draw the first Test against Pakistan in Dubai on Thursday. To win, Australia needed 326 runs on the final day, while Pakistan needed seven wickets to script a famous victory. But new-look Australia stood tall and managed a draw. Applauding Australia’s fighting effort, former Pakistan cricketer Shahid Afridi took to Twitter and praised their “fighting effort”. He further said this was “Test cricket at its best”.

Khawaja hit a solid 141 to notch up his seventh Test hundred, while skipper Tim Paine (61 not out) and Travis Head (72) also scored half-centuries as Australia finished at 362/8 late in the day with lights coming on at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

Showering praise on the “new Australian team” for their never-say-die-attitude, cricketers too took to Twitter and congratulated the Australian team for a gutsy performance.

After Khawaja was dismissed with 14.3 overs left. Spinner Yasir Shah quickly removed Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle but captain Tim Paine and Nathan Lyon survived the day.

Khawaja, who was born in Pakistan but moved to Australia as a child, batted for eight hours 44 minutes and faced 302 balls. He hit 11 boundaries during his stay in the middle.

His innings was the second longest in the fourth innings of a Test, behind England’s Michael Atherton’s 645 minute vigil in scoring 185 not out against South Africa in Johannesburg in 1995.

The left-handed cricketer also registered the highest fourth-innings score by any visiting batsman in Asia, beating New Zealand’s Daniel Vettori’s 140 made at Colombo against Sri Lanka nine years ago.

(With AFP inputs)

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Imran Tahir Bowls South Africa To Victory Over Zimbabwe In 1st T20I

Leg-spinner Imran Tahir bowled South Africa to a 34-run win in the first Twenty20 international against Zimbabwe at Buffalo Park on Tuesday. Tahir took five for 23 as South Africa, defending a modest total of 160 for six, bowled out the tourists for 126. The damage was done in the first four overs as Tahir, sharing the new ball, took the first three wickets. “I’ve been practising with the new ball to see if I can get more accurate (in case) I get a chance to bowl with it,” he said after claiming his best figures in 20-over internationals.

He came back later to take two wickets off successive balls to reduce Zimbabwe to 65 for six.

Peter Moor hit four successive sixes off left-arm spinner Tabraiz Shamsi as he and Brandon Mavuta briefly raised Zimbabwean hopes with an eighth-wicket stand of 53 off 19 balls. Moor made 44 off 21 balls and Mavuta hit 28 off 14 balls.

New cap Rassie van der Dussen steadied South Africa’s innings, scoring 56 after coming in with his team struggling on 11 for two in the second over.

Van der Dussen and David Miller (39) put on 87 off 66 balls for the fourth wicket but South Africa were unable to dominate against a disciplined Zimbabwe bowling attack on a slow pitch. 

“The bowlers continued their good work. They did brilliantly,” said Zimbabwe captain Hamilton Masakadza, who admitted that the batting had failed again after Zimbabwe were beaten 3-0 in a one-day series before the T20 games. “We haven’t had any sort of foundation,” he said.

Kyle Jarvis took three for 37 and Chris Mpofu took two for 24. Both claimed early wickets and bowled well in the death overs, with South Africa able to score only 36 runs while losing three wickets in the last four overs.

Leg-spinner Mavuta, 21, a former Zimbabwe under-19 captain, showed outstanding control, taking one for 19 in four overs. He dismissed South African captain Faf du Plessis for a hard-hit 34 off 20 balls.

“We thought 155 was par,” said Du Plessis. “It was a nice challenge for us because there was quite a bit of dew out there.”

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Prithvi Shaw Included In India’s Final 12 For The 1st Test vs West Indies

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in a first, named the final 12 for India’s first Test against the Windies, to begin at Rajkot from Thursday. The notable inclusion in the 12 was India Under-19 captain Prithvi Shaw, who is slated to open the innings with KL Rahul, settling all speculations about which duo would bat first. Prithvi Shaw had lead India Under-19 to a World Cup triumph in New Zealand earlier this year. The move of naming the final 12 ahead of the game has more or less settled the debate on the playing XI.

Shaw, who earned a maiden call-up midway into the England tour but did not get a game, has been preferred over Mayank Agarwal for the series opener.

Agarwal had broken into the team after scoring tons of runs in domestic cricket and at India A level. What is also clear now is that India will go in with five specialist bowlers and the most likely 12th man will be Shardul Thakur.

Three specialist spinners — Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Kuldeep Yadav — have been picked and the pace pairing will be of Mohammad Shami and Umesh Yadav.

Hanuma Vihari, who had a made gritty 56 on debut at The Oval against England, has been dropped.

Wicket-keeper Rishabh Pant will bat at six while Jadeja will be expected to make vital lower-order contributions in the absence of injured all-rounder Hardik Pandya.

The West Indies series presents a good opportunity for Shaw to make his case for the upcoming Australia tour as pointed out by captain Virat Kohli, who said the top-order is the only area where experimentation is needed.

It will be a dream come true for Shaw when he walks out to bat here. The 18-year-old’s India debut will hardly be a surprise to those who felt the supremely talented batsman was destined to play for the country ever since he started scoring bagful of runs in school cricket in Mumbai.

And when Shaw led the India U-19 to the Word Cup title in New Zealand earlier this year, it was only a matter of time before he graduated to the highest level.

Another strong indicator of his rare talent is his first-class record. In 14 games, he averages 56.72 and has made seven hundreds and five half centuries including a ton on Ranji Trophy debut in November 2016. And almost a year later, he became the youngest to reach three figures on Duleep Trophy debut.

There was an intense debate on the opening combination going into the first Test since India had dropped Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan for young blood. The picture on whether Shaw or Agarwal will open alongside Rahul only became clear after Kohli’s pre-match press conference.

Both the uncapped openers had batted in the nets on Tuesday and even on Wednesday morning the mystery remained as Shaw took gentle throw downs.

Local hero Cheteshwar Pujara and vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane spent the maximum time in the nets.

It all became clear with the announcement of final 12 as India took the cue from the likes of Australia, who name their final eleven before the start of the match.

Squad for first Test

KL Rahul, Prithvi Shaw, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (capt), Ajinkya Rahane, Rishabh Pant (wk), R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Shardul Thakur

(With PTI inputs)

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Smriti Mandhana, Bowlers Guide Indian Women’s Team To Easy Win vs Sri Lanka in 1st ODI

The Indian women’s cricket team served out a dominant performance to register a nine-wicket win against Sri Lanka in the opening One-day International (ODI) match on Tuesday at Galle. Winning the toss, Sri Lanka opted to bat and were bowled out for a paltry 98. Veteran pacer Jhulan Goswami returned with figures of 2/13 in eight overs, while Mansi Joshi, who returned to the squad after an injury layoff, was the pick of the bowlers as she returned with the figures of 3/16 in 6.1 overs.

India, in reply, overhauled the target in just 19.5 overs. Openers Smriti Mandhana (73*) and Punam Raut (24) strung together a 96-run partnership to help India reach the target without much trouble.

Smriti Mandhana, who had a brilliant outing with Western Storm in the Women’s Super League earlier this year, continued her fine form as she scored her 12th ODI fifty. While Smriti did most of the scoring, Punam Raut supported her well by rotating the strike.

With just four runs required for India to win the match, Inoka Ranaweera struck to dismiss Punam.

By virtue of this victory, India jumped one spot to No.5 in the ICC Women’s Championship table.

For Sri Lanka, only three batters were able to reach the double figure run mark. Chamari Atapattu (33 off 93 balls), Dilani Manodara (12 off 19 balls), Sripali Weerakkody (26 off 32 balls).

Chamari Atapattu stitched together a 29-run partnership with Weerakkody to steady the Sri Lankan innings but Deepti Sharma dismissed the Sri Lankan captain to break the partnership. Other than this, the 19-run stand between Atapattu and Dilani Manodara was the only glimmer of hope for the hosts.

The second ODI will be played at the same venue on September on 13.

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Travel from Amausi Airport to Munshi Pulia from 1st April 2019 in Lucknow Metro

लखनऊ: उत्तर प्रदेश की राजधानी लखनऊ के अमौसी हवाई अड्डे से मुंशी पुलिया तक मेट्रो का काम एक अप्रैल 2019 तक पूरा हो जायेगा और शहर के एक कोने से दूसरे कोने तक मेट्रो दौड़ने लगेगी. करीब 23 किलोमीटर की इस दूरी को तय करने में मेट्रो को 40 मिनट का समय लगेगा. इस रूट पर 21 मेट्रो स्टेशन बनाये जा रहे हैं. अभी तक लखनऊ मेट्रो केवल चारबाग रेलवे स्टेशन से ट्रान्सपोर्ट नगर तक की करीब साढ़े आठ किलोमीटर की दूरी ही तय करती है. लखनऊ मेट्रो के प्रबंध निदेशक कुमार केशव ने पत्रकारों से कहा कि ‘‘अमौसी एयरपोर्ट से मुंशी पुलिया (इंदिरा नगर) तक मेट्रो का काम एक अप्रैल 2019 तक पूरा करने का लक्ष्य है. हमें उम्मीद है कि एक अप्रैल से इस 23 किलोमीटर लंबे रूट पर मेट्रो दौड़ने लगेगी. अभी तक इस रूट पर करीब 85 फीसदी काम पूरा हो गया है. हम उम्मीद करते हैं कि इस लंबे रूट पर मेट्रो चलने से इस पर करीब एक लाख यात्री रोजाना यात्रा करेंगे.” 

यात्रीगण कृपया ध्यान दें, लखनऊ मेट्रो में 3 दिन तक नहीं मिलेंगे काउंटर टिकट क्योंकि…

उन्होंने कहा कि इस 23 किलोमीटर रूट पर 21 मेट्रो स्टेशन होंगे और अधिकतम किराया 60 रूपया होगा. अभी मुंशी पुलिया से हवाई अड्डे तक किसी को भी अपने वाहन से जाने में एक से डेढ़ घंटे का समय लगता है लेकिन मेट्रो आरंभ हो जाने के बाद यह दूरी केवल 40 मिनट में पूरी होगी और किसी को भी यातायात जाम के झंझट में भी नही फंसना पड़ेगा. कुमार ने बताया कि इस रूट पर सबसे कठिन काम गोमती नदी पर पुल का निर्माण था जो इसी महीने 30 सितंबर तक पूरा होने की उम्मीद है. 

पहले दिन ही लखनऊ मेट्रो हुई ठप, अखिलेश यादव भी तंज कसना नहीं भूले


उन्होंने बताया कि अभी तक चारबाग रेलवे स्टेशन से ट्रांसपोर्ट नगर तक साढ़े आठ किलोमीटर के रूट पर मेट्रो ट्रेन चल रही है. इस रूट पर प्रतिदिन करीब 12 से 13 हजार यात्री यात्रा कर रहे हैं. जब अमौसी हवाईअड्डे से मुंशीपुलिया तक की मेट्रो आरंभ हो जायेगी तब हमें उम्मीद है कि प्रतिदिन एक लाख यात्री यात्रा करेंगे क्योंकि इस रूट में शहर के सबसे व्यस्तम बाजार हजरतगंज, विधानसभा सचिवालय, लखनऊ विश्वविद्यालय, आईटी चौराहा, निशातगंज और इंदिरानगर जैसे इलाके पडेंगे. 

VIDEO: पहले ही दिन तकनीकी खराबी से अटकी लखनऊ मेट्रो
इस सवाल पर कि इस रूट के पूरा हो जाने के बाद अगले किस रूट पर काम होगा, कुमार ने कहा कि फिर ईस्ट वेस्ट कॉरीडोर पर काम होगा लेकिन इस बारे में अभी सरकार काम कर रही है इसलिये यह बताना मुश्किल होगा कि अगले रूट पर काम कब से आरंभ होगा.

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Djokovic Wins 1st Set 6-3 vs Del Potro

Live Tennis Match Updates Between Juan Martin Del Porto vs Novak Djokovic, US Open Final 2018 at the Arthur Ashe Stadium 

02:39 IST: Forehand long from Djokovic, he takes a 30-love lead against the serving Del Potro. Djokovic nets a backhand to allow Del Potro return in the game 15-30. Del Potro then earns a serve point to make it 30-30 and soon takes a 40-30 lead. Deuce! 

02:34 IST: Set Point! Novak Djokovic takes the first set which started on closely fought note 6-3. Del Potro made too many unforced errors. He nets a forehand to give Djokovic the lead in 42 minutes!  

02:30 IST: Patience from Novak Djokovic in the long rally! Del Potro hits the net and allows Novak take a 5-3 lead in the first set. 

02:29 IST: Del Potro leads 40-love. Pressure returns on Del Potro, who is serving and making unforced errors to make it 40-all. 

02:23 IST: Strong hold from Novak Djokovic, he takes 4-3 lead in the first game which was completely dominated by the Serbian. He used his return serves to power! 

02:20 IST: Novak Djokovic’s return serve hits the net. Del Potro takes the game, it’s 3-3 in the first set. Consecutive unforced errors from Djokovic costed him the game. 

02:15 IST: Unforced error from Del Potro as he hits the net. Djokovic then smashes a return pass to take the game. Djokovic leads 3-2 in the first set. 24 minutes played! 

02:13 IST: Long rally on display now, Novak Djokovic hits the net to make it 15-all. Del Potro plays the return shot wide, way out of the line, helps Djokovic extend the lead to 30-15.

02:08 IST: What a forehand play from Del Potro, smashes the shot with power, Djokovic fails to pick it up. The Argentine takes 30-15 lead now. Poor return serve from Djokovic, will help Del Poto take 40-15 lead. Del Potro returns to make it 2-2 in the first game. Looks like we are set for a close contest with this one! 

02:04 IST: Deuce in the third game of first set! Novak Djokovic takes advantage, he played the return serve way out of reach for Del Potro. Novak Djokovic leads 2-1 in the first set.  

02:02 IST: 30-all in the third game of first set, but Djokovic sends Del Potro in the different direction and hits it on the other to take a 40-30 lead. 

01:57 IST: Del Potro takes back to back serve point, leads 30-love. Novak plays a miscued shot, hits it way over the line to allow Del Potro level the first set to 1-1 in the second game.  

01:55 IST: Novak Djokovic takes the first game, leads 1-0. Novak Djokovic again tried to come close to the net which exposed the back court, which Del Potro took to advantage and sliced the shot over the net. 

01:52 IST: Break point Del Potro, love-15 he leads. But Novak Djokovic returns to make it 15-all. Djokovic then stepped closer to the net to play the shot and Del Potro smashed the return serve way out of the reach for the Serbian. Del Potro leads 40-15. 

01:50 IST: The men are good to go! Novak Djokovic to takes the opening serve. Del Potro won the toss elected to receive first. 

01:45 IST: The roof at the Arthur Ashe stadium is closed due to the rainy atmosphere outside. A loud cheer breaks out as Serbian Novak Djokovic and the Argentine Juan Martin Del Potro take the centre court. Both the players are undergoing the final warm-up before we get underway with this one.  

01:30 IST: The women’s doubles champions celebrate their win at the centre court.

01:25 IST: The US Open women’s doubles have found their champion, we head on to the much awaited men’s singles final now.

01:20 IST: Flashback: The first-time Juan Martin Del Potro and Novak Djokovic came face-to-face.

01:02 IST: Del Potro working out on his return serves during the warm-up session!

01:00 IST: Djokovic flexing his muscles before the final clash! 

12:55 IST: Forehand service vs return serves will be on display tonight!

12:50 IST: Juan Martin Del Potro vs Novak Djokovic Head-to-head battle

World no.3 Del Potro trails 4-14 to World no.6 Djokovic

Del Potro win percentage 22

Djokovic win percentage 78

12:45 IST: Novak Djokovic’s best finishes at Grand Slam singles contest

Australian Open W (2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016)

French Open W (2016)

Wimbledon W (2011, 2014, 2015, 2018)

US Open W (2011, 2015)

12:40 IST: Juan Martin Del Potro’s best finishes at Grand Slam singles contest

Australian Open QF (2009, 2012)

French Open SF (2009, 2018)

Wimbledon SF (2013)

US Open W (2009)

12:30 IST: Hello and welcome to the live commentary from the US Open men’s singles final between Juan Martin Del Potro and Novak Djokovic. 

It was plain sailing for the 31-year-old Serb who is chasing a 14th Slam title to take him level with Pete Sampras on the all-time list.

He broke serve four times while an under-par Nishikori saved 13 of the 17 break points he faced and committed 51 unforced errors.

Juan Martin del Potro reached the US Open final on Friday after defending champion and world number one Rafael Nadal retired from their last-four clash with a knee injury. 

Third seed Del Potro, the champion in 2009, was 7-6 (7/3), 6-2 ahead when Nadal retired. 

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India Eye 1st Women’s Hockey Asiad Gold In 36 Years

A buoyant India women’s hockey team will be aiming to win the gold medal after a long wait of 36 years when they take on Japan in the final at the Asian Games on Friday. India won the gold medal in 1982, the year women’s hockey was first included in the Asian Games programme. They reached the final for the second time in 1998 when they lost 1-2 to South Korea. They bagged bronze medals in 2006 and 2014. The impressive Indian team has remained undefeated throughout the tournament, registering huge victories against Indonesia (8-0), Kazakhstan (21-0), South Korea (4-1) and Thailand (5-0) in the pool stages and securing a hard-fought 1-0 win against a resilient Chinese team in the semi-final. India’s form in the competition has been inspired by their resolute defending in all their five matches which has seen them concede only once in 300 minutes of hockey, which was through a penalty stroke against South Korea. 

Deep Grace Ekka, Deepika, Gurjit Kaur, Sunita Lakra and youngster Reena Khokhar have all played a major role in defence. But chief coach Sjoerd Marijne believes that the credit for the strong defence goes to the team’s collective performance. “We have been good in defence throughout the tournament and have been excellent with the tackling. The only goal we conceded was against a strong team like South Korea, and that gives me and the girls a huge confidence going into the final against Japan,” Marijne said.

“We have defended well as a unit with everyone executing their duties and it gives us a solid foundation in all the matches,” he added.

The World No. 9 India became the highest ranked Asian team in the world after their quarter-final finish at the recent FIH Women’s World Cup 2018, and captain Rani Rampal is determined to become the champions of the Asian Games as well. 

“The final against Japan will be exciting for sure but we are determined to give everything on the pitch to win the match. The team knows that they came here to only achieve one thing, and that is the qualification for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Therefore, we will make sure that we play like the best team in Asia and work hard to achieve our goal,” Rani said.

The team’s forward-line, led by the experience of Vandana Katariya and skipper Rani, has also been in prime form throughout the tournament, scoring a total of 39 goals. This includes 38 in four Pool B matches and one in the semi-final in the five matches that they have played. 

The Indian team will expect their forwards Navneet Kaur, Navjot Kaur and Lalremsiami to deliver again as they look to win only their second gold medal at the Asian Games after having won one gold, one silver and three bronze medals in their nine previous appearances.

Friday’s decider will also be India’s second gold medal match at the Asian Games, with the team having lost their 1998 final match 1-2 to South Korea, and chief coach Sjoerd Marijne is wary of the threat that the Japanese team poses but believes that his team is oozing confidence ahead of the summit clash. 

“We have played Japan in the past and we know that they are a strong side. They have played well in this tournament and deserve to be in the final,” he said.

“But I believe we have the quality and confidence to beat any team in the world. Therefore, it is important that we stick to our game-plan and concentrate on producing the kind of performance which is worthy of being the Champions,” he added.

(With IANS Inputs)

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Imran Khan Visits Pak Army Headquarters For Security Briefing, His 1st As PM

Pak PM Imran Khan paid his first visit to the country’s army headquarters in Rawalpindi (File)


Pakistan’s new Prime Minister Imran Khan today paid his first visit to the country’s army headquarters in the garrison city of Rawalpindi, where he was briefed on security issues.

Mr Khan, the Chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf or PTI, won the July 25 general election amidst the perception that the Pakistan Army, a major player in the country’s politics, has thrown its weight behind his party.

Imran Khan was accompanied by Defence Minister Pervez Khattak, Foreign Affairs Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, and Finance Minister Asad Umar among others.

Mr Khan was received by Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa at the General Headquarters, Pak Army spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor said. “Prime Minister Imran Khan (is) being briefed on defence, internal security and other professional matters,” he said.

On Monday, Pak army chief General Bajwa had the first formal meeting with the country’s prime minister, Imran Khan, who was sworn-in as the 22nd premier of Pakistan on August 18. They discussed the security situation in the country, as well as the efforts to ensure long-lasting peace and stability in the region.

General Bajwa had congratulated Imran Khan on assuming the top ministerial job during their meeting.

Pakistan’s military has ruled the coup-prone country for nearly half of it’s history since its formation in 1947.

Mr Khan and General Bajwa had held their first meeting in 2017 when the cricketer-turned-politician congratulated the latter over his promotion and appointment as Pak army chief.

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Bajrang Punia winning 1st gold medal for India at this Asian games 2018. 65kg wrestling

भारतीय पहलवान बजरंग पुनिया ने फाइनल में जापान के ताकातानी दाएची को हराया. यह 18वें एशियन गेम्स में भारत का पहला गोल्ड मेडल है.

Asian games 2018: बजरंग पूनिया ने दिखाया दम, भारत को दिलाया पहला गोल्ड

बजरंग पूनिया 18वें एशियन गेम्स में गोल्ड जीतने वाले पहले भारतीय बन गए हैं.

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