Angry Birds Maker Rovio Says It Needs New Games to Revitalise Sales


Rovio Entertainment, the maker of the “Angry Birds” mobile game, on Friday said the company needed to come up with new games to drive growth and warned that sales would fall this year after reporting higher third-quarter profits.

The Finnish company, which listed its shares on the stock market in Helsinki last year, reported third-quarter adjusted operating profit of EUR 10.4 million ($11.8 million or roughly Rs. 84.77 crores), up from EUR 4.0 million (roughly Rs. 33 crores) a year ago.

But Rovio said tough competition and high marketing costs would put pressure on its full-year outlook. The group said it expected 2018 sales to be between EUR 280 and 290 million (roughly between Rs. 2,281 and 2,362 crores), compared with a previous range of EUR 260 and 300 million (roughly between Rs. 2,118 and 2,444 crores). Last year, the company had revenues of EUR 297 million (roughly Rs. 2,419 crores).

“It is clear that we need new games in order to accelerate growth,” Rovio’s Chief Executive Kati Levoranta said in a statement, adding that the company planned to launch at least two new games next year and had another ten projects in the pipeline.

Rovio grew rapidly after the 2009 launch of the original “Angry Birds” game, in which players used slingshots to attack pigs who stole birds’ eggs. The company expanded into film with an Angry Birds movie in 2016, but more recently has been hit by its high dependency on the Angry Birds brand and tough competition.

After its initial public offering in September 2017, Rovio’s shares dropped 50 percent in February after the company said its sales could fall this year after 55 percent growth in 2017.

Rovio expects a movie sequel to boost business next year and the company has also stepped up investments in its spin-off company Hatch, which is building a Netflix-style streaming service for mobile games.

Full-year core operating profit margin is seen at 10-11 percent, up from a previous view of 9-11 percent.

© Thomson Reuters 2018



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India’s First Fortnite PS4 Tournament to Take Place at the Indian Games Expo in Mumbai This Month


India gets its first Fortnite PS4 tournament this month at the Indian Games Expo 2018 (IGX 2018). The event is now in its fourth year and its organisers have partnered with PlayStation and Epic Games to make this possible. And while Fortnite is a 100-player battle royale game, this on-ground Fortnite PS4 tournament is limited to 25 players. The tournament will take place on November 24 and 25 at the Bombay Exhibition Centre in Goregaon which also serves as the venue for IGX 2018.

The overall winner of the inaugural Fortnite PS4 tournament will win a 500 Million Limited Edition PS4 Pro console in addition to the obvious bragging rights. Registrations for the Fortnite tournament will begin on November 17 on the IGX website. If Fortnite doesn’t interest you there will be tournaments around FIFA 19, WWE 2K19, Tekken 7, and Rainbow Six Siege to name a few.

Considering that Fortnite on PS4 is immensely popular in India (partly due to PUBG not being available for the console until December 7), it’s a smart move when you consider that other local events have shunned Fortnite in favour of the usual fare like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Dota 2.

It’ll be interesting to see if Fortnite gets a mobile tournament in India too due to the widespread availability of smartphones. Though given Fortnite’s performance on Android devices, perhaps restricting it to the PS4 may be the right move.

Previously, Fortnite for Android, iOS, PS4, Xbox One, and PC got a new update that brings a new limited time mode called Food Fight. The Fortnite update 6.30 patch notes suggest that the Food Fight limited time mode has some elements in common with Splatoon 2 for the Nintendo Switch, what with Epic Games asking fans to choose between burgers or pizza on social media. In Fortnite Food Fight, two teams are on either side of the map. There’s a huge barrier down the middle. The objective is to build a fort to protect your restaurant mascot. When the barrier lowers, you’re tasked with destroying the enemy’s mascot to win. The Fortnite 6.30 update download size is around 152MB on iOS.


If you’re a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360’s gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week’s episode by hitting the play button below.



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Sacred Games Actress Kubbra Sait defend Nawazuddin Siddiqui on sexual harassment allegation


खास बातें

  1. नवाजुद्दीन सिद्दीकी पर लगा जबरदस्ती करने का आरोप
  2. बचाव में उतरीं ‘सेक्रेड गेम्स’ अभिनेत्री कुब्रा सैत
  3. ‘‘एक रिश्ते में खटास पड़ गई, यह मीटू नहीं है.”

मुंबई: पूर्व मिस इंडिया निहारिका सिंह के अपनी ‘मीटू’ स्टोरी में नवाजुद्दीन सिद्दीकी पर गंभीर आरोप लगाने के बाद कुब्रा सैत ‘‘सैक्रेड गेम्स” के अपने सह कलाकार के समर्थन में आगे आई हैं. निहारिका की कहानी संध्या मेनन ने अपने टि्वटर अकाउंट पर साझा की. संध्या उन पत्रकारों में से एक है जो यौन उत्पीड़न के खिलाफ भारत में ‘मीटू’ अभियान की अगुवाई कर रही हैं. निहारिका ने साल 2009 में ‘‘मिस लवली” में नवाजुद्दीन के साथ काम किया था. उन्होंने बताया कि एक सुबह उन्होंने ‘‘मीटो” के अभिनेता को नाश्ते के लिए अपने घर बुलाया और उन्होंने जबरदस्ती उन्हें बाहों में जकड़ लिया. कुब्रा ने कहा कि किसी को ‘मीटू’ स्टोरी के साथ रिश्ते में खटास पड़ने को लेकर भ्रमित नहीं होना चाहिए.

#MeToo: नवाजुद्दीन सिद्दीकी पर एक्ट्रेस ने लगाया आरोप, मुझे बाहों में भरा और जबरदस्ती…

टिप्पणियां


कुब्रा ने शनिवार को टि्वटर पर लिखा, ‘‘एक रिश्ते में खटास पड़ गई, यह मीटू नहीं है. लोगों को इसके बीच के अंतर को समझने की जरुरत है. मैं नवाजुद्दीन सिद्दीकी या एक व्यक्ति के रूप में नवाज के साथ हूं.” उन्होंने कहा, ‘‘मैं इस तथ्य के साथ खड़ी हूं कि हालांकि निहारिका सिंह को इंडस्ट्री में मुश्किल वक्त का सामना करना पड़ा होगा लेकिन अपने निजी संबंधों को ‘मीटू’ बयान बताना अनुपयुक्त है. इंसान के तौर पर हम गलत हैं. यह किसी विशिष्ट लिंग के लिए नहीं है.” 

VIDEO: सैफ, नवाज की नई वेब सीरीज ‘सेक्रेड गेम्स’ का बेसब्री से इंतजार
नवाजुद्दीन ने अभी निहारिका के आरोपों पर टिप्पणी नहीं की है.
(इनपुट भाषा से)



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Once India’s Pride At Asian Games, Boxer Sells Kulfi On Haryana Streets


Dinesh Kumar hopes to pay off his family’s debts by selling ice cream, unlikely as that may seem.

Bhiwani: 

An Asian Games silver medallist and recipient of the Arjuna Award in 2010, these days 30-year-old Dinesh Kumar sells ice-cream on the streets of Haryana’s Bhiwani to the very people who once cheered for him on national television.

A video posted by news agency ANI shows the former sportsperson pushing a cart titled “Dinesh Kulfi” even as auto rickshaws and people on bicycles pass Mr Kumar nonchalantly, little knowing that they are sharing the frame with a man who could have well become the country’s next boxing star. But that was before his car collided with a truck near Samana in 2014, nipping his dreams at the bud.

Today, Mr Kumar seems nothing like the sportsperson who once won 17 gold, one silver and five bronze medals in various competitions across the country and abroad. “Dinesh won many laurels for India at competitions across the world, and our father took loan after loan to send him to England and other countries. He is lakhs in debt now, and that’s why we are in this terrible state. There’s no help coming from the government, and nobody even wants to know how we are doing. Things would have been very different if this had happened to someone else,” said his elder brother.

The former boxer told ANI that he was trying to settle his family’s debts by selling kulfis, a prospect that seems unlikely at best. “Right now, I have no hope that the government will provide me with monetary aid or employment. None of the political parties that have been in power since my accident have found me worth helping. I want to let the government know that I am wasting away here even though I am still a good sportsperson. I want to help my family pay off the debts they accumulated trying to further my career and then get back into the boxing ring,” he added.

Mr Kumar said he has not lost touch with the sport, and is currently engaged in coaching children to box. “Many of the children I mentored have reached the international arena,” he said, adding that he does not charge any fee from his pupils.

The former sportsperson’s coach, Vishnu Bhagwan, also urged the government to come to his aid. “Dinesh was very agile as a boxer. He won many medals in the junior category, but is now forced to sell kulfis on the streets because of a tragic accident. But he can still have a future, provided they help him,” he told ANI.

(With inputs from ANI)





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Google Tipped to Be Working on ‘Play Pass’ App and Games Subscription Service for Play Store


Google is said to be working on an app subscription service for Google Play. According to compelling evidence discovered in a report, Google Play may soon introduce a subscription service called ‘Play Pass’ that offers users paid apps and games for a monthly fee. As per the latest information, the new service may let Android users subscribe to paid apps on Google Play by paying a monthly fee. The potential feature was reportedly first spotted in a Play Store APK teardown back in June, while this week a Google survey about a subscription service for apps was also discovered. Notably, Google is yet to confirm its plans for the Play Pass subscription service.

Folks at XDA Developers had the first sign of the service when they discovered the potential feature called ‘Play Pass’ in a Play Store APK teardown in June this year. At the time, noted developer Kieron Quinn of MightyQuinnApps had suggested that the feature could be a subscription service. He found it while digging around the Google Play Store using the Xposed Framework. While turning feature flag to ‘true’ reportedly did not reveal any changes in the Play Store, decompiling the code showed that ‘Play Pass’ could have something to with a subscription service. However, since the feature couldn’t be activated at the time, no details were available.

Meanwhile, in a survey conducted via the Google Opinion Rewards programme recently, the company was spotted asking users how well ‘Pass’ described an unnamed ‘app store’ that “has a subscription service that offers hundreds of dollars worth of paid apps and games for a monthly fee.” This essentially indicates that the tech giant could be seeking to finalise the branding.

It is worth noting that Google has not provided any official details that suggest it will introduce an app subscription service called ‘Play Pass’. Teardowns are speculative in nature as the service may or may not get the same features in its next update. However, the report does suggest that Google is at least planning on bringing it.



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Honda Felicitates Deepa Malik For Her Achievements At Asian Para Games 2018


Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India has supported Deepa Malik during the Asian Para Games by sponsoring her essential expenses at the event.




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Deepa Malik with Harbhajan Singh, Director, General and Corporate Affairs, HMSI

Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) Private Limited has felicitated Padma Shri Award winner and the first India woman ever to win at the Paralympic Games, Deepa Malik for her achievements at the Asian Para Games 2018 held in Jakarta. Malik has won medals for three consecutive years in the Asian Para Games. Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India has supported Deepa Malik during the Asian Para Games by sponsoring her essential expenses like training material, including new wheel chair, physiotherapist and nutritionist fees and coaching, which helped her in clinching medals at the event.

Being a Paralympic athlete comes with a lot of challenges and I thank Honda for supporting me in my journey to make India proud on international level. It has been a soul satisfying journey for me at the event and coming home with two medals. Personally too, Honda has been a part of my life. My specially modified Navi has given wings to fly making me feel more empowered. I now look forward to winning more laurels for India with Honda’s support and spreading awareness on disability sensitisation in our country,” said Deepa Malik.

Malik was felicitated at a special honorary event in the presence of Harbhajan Singh, Director, General & Corporate Affairs at Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India, and founders of the NGO “Wheeling Happiness”.

On the occasion, Harbhajan Singh, said, “As a responsible corporate citizen, Honda has extended its support to various fields. This time, Honda went a step ahead to support the nation’s pride Deepa Malik who is a source of inspiration to all Indians, especially for women. Deepa with her challenging spirit, proves that physical disability cannot impair one’s determination. Honda feels proud to support India’s idol in her flight for glory. Honda believes in uplifting and cultivating young talent to develop more champions who would go on to make India proud.”

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Deepa Malik is the first Indian woman who won the silver medal in the shot put event at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games and was honoured with the Arjuna Award in 2012. She was also conferred the prestigious Padma Shri award in 2017. She has won 58 national and 18 International medals across all disciplines till date and is also a motivational speaker.

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Red Dead Redemption 2 PS4 Playable From Disc, No Additional Download Needed: Rockstar Games Support


Much has been said about Red Dead Redemption 2 in the days leading upto its release. One of the hot-button topics surrounding the game is its file size. Previously rumoured to be 105GB and then 50GB, with Sony and Microsoft confirming a Red Dead Redemption 2 download size closer to 90GB, many wonder if it would be playable from the game’s disc without requiring an additional download. An eager gamer on gaming forum ResetEra confirmed that Red Dead Redemption 2 can be played on PS4 at least, without an extra download.

“We would like to inform you that you can keep the pre-order as Red Dead Redemption 2 will be fully functional and playable from the disc on PS4,” an email from Rockstar Games’ support team reads. It’s unclear if this is the case with the Xbox One version of the game at the moment. Nonetheless, with it out in around a week, we’ll know for sure soon enough.

 

The wording is of interest here. In the past it was rumoured that Red Dead Redemption 2 may ship on two discs, but with Red Dead Online – the game’s multiplayer component launching after Red Dead Redemption 2, it is possible that Red Dead Redemption 2 may ship on a single disc or have one disc for single-player and another for multiplayer. Another possibility is that Rockstar Games’ support team may simply be wrong given that the game has a mammoth 89.20GB download size on PS4 and the maximum capacity on a dual-layer Blu-ray disc is 50GB.

And when Red Dead Online is out, PS4 players get an Arabian horse with a custom alligator skin saddle and the High Roller double-action revolver among other in-game items as timed exclusives. To access these, you’ll need an active PlayStation Plus subscription – Sony’s online multiplayer service.

Red Dead Redemption 2 PS4 timed exclusive content

  • Grizzlies Outlaw Outfit: featuring a wool-lined, long coat with custom, hand-tooled leather accents, a leather vest with ornate pattern details, stand wing-tip collar with black neckerchief, and custom ornate buckle with matching boot tips, the Grizzlies Outlaw Outfit pays homage to the ‘boss’ of the Northern States, its real-world inspiration. 
  • Red Chestnut Arabian Horse: known for its speed and handling, the Red Chestnut Arabian Horse is in a class above most horses you would find in the wild, with performance a step up from the first tier of available horses. It will be available during the launch of Red Dead Online.
  • Alligator Skin Ranch Cutter Saddle: the Alligator Skin Ranch Cutter Saddle provides a number of benefits when equipped including core Health and Stamina boosts, which increase speed and acceleration for the horse. This saddle is an enhanced version of the basic saddle that comes stock for players when starting Red Dead Online. It will be available during the launch of Red Dead Online.
  • High Roller Double-Action Revolver: the High Roller Double-Action Revolver features a polished steel body with unique period-inspired, beautifully detailed engraving work. The deadly, quick draw revolver comes complete with unique playing card and skull elements carved into the grip. Its superior, quick rate of fire over all other revolvers makes it a great choice for mounted combat. It will be available during the launch of Red Dead Online.

If you’re a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360’s gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week’s episode by hitting the play button below.



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Discord Store for PC Games Launched Globally


Launched in beta in Canada earlier in the year, the Discord Store for PC games is now available globally albeit, still in beta. Aside from having what the company claims to be a curated list of PC games, Discord’s Nitro subscription service gets over 60 new games that can be accessed for $10 a month (around Rs. 735). A host of games that are labelled as ‘First on Discord’ have also been revealed. Plus, there’s a new universal library for the Discord Store allowing gamers to launch all their titles from one place regardless of where it was purchased.

“Discord’s always been about bringing people together around games. Now, we’re bringing games to people with our curated game store and Nitro game subscription service,” said Jason Citron, CEO and Co-founder, Discord in a prepared statement. “We are really excited to help amazing developers get their games out to the market and help players find great new content.”

“Discord already established itself as the new standard for the community to interact. Now, it presents a unique opportunity for users to discover games through their friends as well – people can dive into shared gaming experiences by seeing what their friends play and buy in the Discord environment,” said Georg Klotzberg, Sales Director of THQ Nordic in the same prepared statement. “The Discord Store is a new way for us to reach our players and their friends on a platform they love and use every day.”

It’s interesting to see a platform positioning itself around the premise of curation, something the de facto storefront for all things PC games, Steam lacks and it seems to bring chilling consequences. Unlike Steam however, there’s no local pricing for India just yet. Considering how most big budget games are priced on Steam these days, it’s a moot point. That said, here’s what you can expect from the Discord Store.

First on Discord PC games

  • Sinner: Sacrifice for Redemption
  • Minion Masters
  • King of the Hat
  • Bad North
  • At Sundown

Discord Store games list

  • Moonlighter
  • Frostpunk
  • Starbound
  • Masters of Anima
  • Celeste
  • Dead Cells
  • CrossCode
  • Omensight
  • Into the Breach
  • Battle Chasers: Nightwar
  • Red Faction Guerrilla Re-Mars-tered Edition
  • Spellforce 3
  • This is the Police 2
  • Hollow Knight
  • Subnautica
  • The Banner Saga 3
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire

Discord Nitro free PC games

  • This War of Mine
  • Last Day of June
  • Ticket to Ride
  • RollerCoaster Tycoon 2: Triple Thrill Pack
  • 140
  • Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun
  • Pony Island
  • Lost Horizon
  • Metro: Last Light Redux
  • Unleash
  • Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition
  • Brutal Legend
  • Psychonauts
  • The End Is Nigh
  • Seasons After Fall
  • SOMA
  • Trine 2: Complete Story
  • Trine 3: The Artifacts of Power
  • Trine Enchanted Edition
  • Slime-San
  • The Inner World
  • Bridge Constructor
  • Bridge Constructor Medieval
  • Dead Age
  • Risk of Rain
  • Wasteland 2: Director’s Cut
  • The Metronomicon: Slay The Dance Floor
  • TowerFall Ascension + Expansion
  • Nidhogg
  • System Shock: Enhanced Edition
  • System Shock 2
  • Oddworld:New ‘n’ Tasty!
  • Out of the Park Baseball 18
  • Hob
  • Torchlight
  • Torchlight 2
  • INSIDE
  • LIMBO
  • Monaco: What’s Yours Is Mine
  • Tooth and Tail
  • Dandara
  • GoNNER
  • Kathy Rain
  • Kingdom: Classic
  • Kingdom: New Lands
  • Tormentor X Punisher
  • Chaos Reborn
  • Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation
  • Galactic Civilizations III
  • FTL
  • Super Meat Boy
  • Super Hexagon
  • VVVVVV
  • de Blob 2
  • SpellForce 2 Anniversary Edition
  • Darksiders II Deathinitive Edition
  • Darksiders Warmastered Edition
  • de Blob
  • Red Faction 1
  • Dungeon Defenders

If you’re a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360’s gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week’s episode by hitting the play button below.



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PS4 Games at Rs. 999 With Sony India Diwali Offer: Here’s the Full List


Select PS4 games in India have received a price cut to Rs. 999 as a part of Sony’s Diwali offers. While past PS4 game schemes have seen certain titles have an effective Rs. 999 price point, this time around Sony has made their prices a flat Rs. 999 per game for titles that usually retail for Rs. 1,499. This limited time offer is valid from October 16 to November 1. So if you were looking to buy cheap PS4 games, you may want to hold off until this comes into effect. This limited time offer will be available on Amazon IndiaFlipkartGames The Shop, Sony Centres, and most offline game stores as well.

PS4 games for India at Rs. 999

  • Bloodborne
  • Driveclub
  • Infamous Second Son
  • Killzone Shadow Fall
  • The Last of Us Remastered
  • LittleBigPlanet 3
  • Ratchet and Clank
  • Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End

You can already pick up some of these games like Uncharted 4, which has been available for under Rs. 999. In addition to this, Sony will be dropping price on games that cost Rs. 2,499 to Rs. 1,499. All in all, it seems like a mix of the company’s Back to School and Days of Play offers from earlier in the year.

PS4 games at Rs. 1,499 in India

  • Shadow of the Colossus
  • Uncharted: The Lost Legacy
  • Horizon Zero Dawn
  • Driveclub VR

Aside from games, PS VR sees a price drop to Rs. 25,990 instead of Rs. 37,990 and comes with Driveclub VR and PlayStation Worlds on disc, this is the revised PS VR not the first version. PS VR-exclusive Firewall: Zero Hour gets a discount too from Rs. 7,290 to Rs. 4,990. According to several retailers Gadgets 360 spoke to, stock isn’t uniformly spread across the country so don’t expect every local store to have pricing in line with this at the same time. These discounts join the price cut on the PS4 DualShock 4 controller.

In the lead up to Diwali, Sony has dropped the price of the PS4 controller to Rs. 3,990 instead of the usual Rs. 4,990. This is the first price drop for the DualShock 4 in recent memory. What’s more is, it’s not limited to the standard black controller either. The red, blue, gold, silver, and a new blue camouflage variant will also see a price cut to Rs. 3,990. As always, we’ve got in touch with the company for comment and will update the story if we hear from it.


If you’re a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360’s gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week’s episode by hitting the play button below.

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Manu Bhaker Wins Silver, Men’s Hockey Team Reaches Semi-Final At Youth Olympics Games


The India-Tajik pair had on Thursday come through qualification with a score of 751. They then beat an Egyptian-Thai pair 10-4 in the round of 16 at the Parque Polideportivo Roca shooting range in the Argentine capital. They beat a pair from Lithuania and Moldova 10-8 in the quarterfinals and then overcame Andria Ibarra of Mexico and Dymtro Honta of Ukraine 10-3 in the semifinals.

The German-Bulgarian pair, however, started strong in the finals and was 3-0 ahead at one stage before winning 10-3 to emerge champions.

According to the format, the gold medal winner of the individual event is paired with the athlete who finished 20th in the final. India thus wrapped up their shooting campaign with two gold and three silver medals. Of the eight medals won by the Indian contingent so far, five are from shooting. Manu and Saurabh Chaudhary had won gold in the men’s and women’s 10m air pistol events, while Shahu Mane and Mehuli Ghosh had won silver in the men’s and women’s 10m air rifle events, earlier in the Games.

On the hockey turf, Shivam Anand (1st, 8th minutes) sounded the board twice while Maninder Singh a(3rd) and Sanjay (17th) were the other goal scorers for India in the quarterfinals of the Hockey 5s competition at the Parque Polideportivo Roca. Poland’s goals came from the sticks of Eryk Bembenek (16th) and Michal Nowakowski (18th).

The Indian women’s hockey 5s team beat South Africa 5-2 in their final Pool A match to advance to the quarterfinals of the Youth Olympic Games here. The Indians finished in the second spot in their pool with 12 points, behind leaders Argentina.

Mumtaz Khan (2nd, 17th minute), Reet (10th), Lalremsiami (12th) and Ishika Chaudhary (13th) scored in India’s convincing victory over South Africa on Thursday as the team ended the pool stages on a winning note after Wednesday’s defeat to hosts Argentina.

On the badminton courts, title favourite Indian Lakshya Sen recovered from a game deficit to beat Kodai Naraoka 14-21 21-15 24-22.

Swimmer Srihari Natraj failed to qualify for the finals of the men’s 200m backstroke after finishing sixth in Heat 1 with a timing of 2:04.80, which was overall 13th best. Only eight best made it to the final.



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