Pro Wrestling League: Sakshi Malik Aims To Silence Critics


After her first win over Navjot Kaur in the Pro Wrestling League Season 4 on Friday, Rio Olympic bronze medallist Sakshi Malik is looking to silence her critics through her performances in every competition she takes features in from here onwards. “The last few bouts where I had to face defeat were very close affairs. Every time, it was just a matter of few seconds here and there. If I could have managed to hold on for a few seconds longer, the end results could have been different,” Sakshi told IANS.

Competing in her first Asian Games in Jakarta last year, Sakshi lost her bronze medal bout to South Korea’s Hang Jungwon. At the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, she was expected to do much better than the bronze she won there.

PWL has played a big role in the growth of Sakshi’s career and the Olympian is determined to prove a point in the tournament this season as well.

“From Season 1 onwards, PWL has given me the opportunity to wrestle against top foreign wrestlers and that has helped me a lot in all major events in my career. Earlier, we got to fight with foreign wrestlers only when we went abroad but since PWL has happened we have not only got opportunities to wrestle with them but also train with them,” she said.

“I lost to world champion Oksana Herhel of Ukraine twice that season, but I learnt a lot from those defeats which stood me in good stead during the Rio Olympics.”

While talking about her bout against Geeta Phogat in Season 1, Sakshi said that she was highly inexperience compared to Geeta. But, she was determined to turn the tables on her in the PWL after going down to Geeta in the World Championships trials before that.

“Geeta is a medallist at the World Championships and though I was inexperienced, I was determined to defeat her. It took a lot of effort but I am glad I was successful in the end,” said Sakshi and added that her experience of wrestling against players like Geeta and Oksana have helped her tremendously in improving her game.

Talking about her chances at the Tokyo Olympics next year, Sakshi said: “Winning another Olympic medal is my dream and I am completely focused on that. But before that, there is the world championships where I have to perform well to qualify for the Tokyo Games. I am really happy with my fitness and training at the moment and I am sure, I will be able to make my dream a reality in Tokyo next year.”



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Pakistan Have “Very Good Chance” To Win World Cup 2019: Shoaib Malik


Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik believes his team has a very good chance of winning the 2019 World Cup, which will take place in England and Wales. Although, the veteran said it will only be possible if his side performs well in cricket’s marquee tournament against the rest of the world. Pakistan’s last World Cup triumph in the One-Day International (ODI) format came in the year 1992 but Shoaib Malik feels his side has the ability to win the tournament this year.

“I feel we have a very good chance to win the tournament. But then having a ‘good chance’ doesn’t mean much. How we play each game and how we perform against the rest of the world will define how far we go,” Malik told Sky Sports.

“Yes, we have the ability to win the World Cup hands-down, but abilities don’t win you anything, performances do,” the 36-year-old added.

Malik further said his have the combination of top ODI batsmen and bowlers and he is personally looking to make the World Cup 2019 memorable.

“Our capabilities include having top ODI bowlers and batsmen in our line-up and personally I’m looking forward to a memorable World Cup 2019,” Malik said.

The experienced campaigner will be one of the key players for Pakistan during the World Cup. He has played 275 ODIs and raked up over 7,200 runs at an average of 35.24.

Pakistan will begin World Cup campaign against the Windies on May 31. They will later take on hosts England and will clash against India on June 16.



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Jammu And Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik Says Shah Faesal Could Serve Better As An IAS Officer


Shah Faesal resigned earlier this week. (File)

Jammu: 

Calling Shah Faesal as an “efficient” and “dedicated” IAS officer, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Saturday said although the decision to join politics was personal, he could have served people better as an officer rather than as a politician.

“Faesal was an efficient and dedicated officer who rendered his services with great zeal and enthusiasm for the welfare of the state and its people particularly belonging to weaker sections of the society.

“In case, he would continue his service as an IAS officer, he could serve the people of society in a better way,” the Governor said in a statement in Jammu. 

Mr Faesal, who has been in the limelight since becoming the first Kashmiri to top the civil services exam in 2009, resigned on January 9, protesting the “unabated” killings in Kashmir and the marginalisation of Indian Muslims.

In a brief statement on Facebook, the 35-year-old said his resignation was also to protest “the marginalisation and invisiblisation of around 200 million Indian Muslims at the hands of Hindutva forces reducing them to second-class citizens; insidious attacks on the special identity of the state and growing culture of intolerance and hate in mainland India in the name of hyper-nationalism”.

The Jammu and Kashmir Governor said Mr Faesal could have delivered better as an officer rather than as a politician.

“As far as his feelings about Kashmiris are concerned, he could be posted in the region for extending his fullest support in eradicating poverty and creating job opportunities for the youth of the Valley,” he said.

“He (Faesal) should consult the youth to know their aspirations and try to create a new platform for the redressal of problems and grievances of youth,” Mr Malik said.

The Governor, however, observed that it was not necessary for him to suggest Mr Faesal on what to do even though his best wishes were always with the former IAS officer.

“I would love to meet him if he comes to me for the redressal of problems of the youth,” Mr Malik added.





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Ready For Assembly Polls In Jammu And Kashmir: Governor Satya Pal Malik


Satya Pal Malik said the administration was ready for assembly elections in the state.

Jammu: 

Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik on Friday said the administration was ready for assembly elections in the state and a call in this direction should be taken by the Election Commission and New Delhi. 

“Whenever, they (EC) tell us, we are ready for the polls (to assembly),” he told reporters after the oath-taking ceremony of sarpanch of Jammu region. 

On IAS officer Shah Faesal’s resignation, Mr Malik said he himself was a government employee and did not wish to comment on the matter. 

The Election Commission (EC) had in November last said fresh elections in Jammu and Kashmir would be held within the next six months, even as the body did not rule out the possibility of holding the state polls before the Lok Sabha polls due this year. 

“The Jammu and Kashmir assembly polls must be held on the first occasion before May. It could be held before the parliamentary elections also,” Chief Election Commissioner O P Rawat had said.

He said as per the Supreme Court, the outer limit for holding fresh polls after the dissolution of the House was six months, that is May, 2019. 

It may be recalled that the central government on December 28 told the Lok Sabha that Jammu and Kashmir Governor had no option but to recommend President’s Rule in the state as no party or alliance staked claim to form the government.

On Tuesday, former chief minister Omar Abdullah said the assembly polls should be held “as soon as possible”. 

The National Conference (NC) vice president also took a dig at some politicians and bureaucrats for “creating hurdles” in holding of assembly elections along with the Lok Sabha polls in the state. 





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Yearender 2018, Marriages, Children: Sania Mirza And Shoaib Malik Welcome Baby Boy; Wedding Bells For Saina Nehwal


The year 2018 saw a lot of Indian sports stars make a huge impact on the international stage but it was also the year when many of them achieved certain milestones in their personal lives.

The wedding fervour for the year 2018 kick-started with Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma getting hitched in the last month of 2017 but there were other life events too that made the headlines this year. Let’s have a look at some of them.

The birth of Izhaan Mirza Malik

Indian tennis star Sania Mirza and Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik were blessed with their son Izhaan Mirza Malik on October 30. “Excited to announce: It’s a boy, and my girl is doing great and keeping strong as usual #Alhumdulilah. Thank you for the wishes and Duas, we are humbled. #BabyMirzaMalik,” Shoaib Malik wrote on Twitter.

Sania, who took a break after undergoing surgery has not played this year and later confirmed a lengthier time out after confirming the news of her pregnancy. Sania clarified that she is aiming to be back on the court for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Sunil Chhetri and Sonam Bhattacherjee rang in marriage anniversary with ‘keepy-uppies’

India football captain Sunil Chhetri and Sonam Bhattacherjee celebrated their first wedding anniversary on December 4. The couple played a game of “keepy-uppies” to ring in their marriage anniversary.

Chhetri posted a fun video with his wife on social media and wrote: “Brought in the anniversary with a few keepy-uppies. We should be able to celebrate the second one with a football instead of a balloon.”

Virat Kohli, Anushka Sharma celebrated first wedding anniversary in Australia

Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma celebrated their first wedding anniversary with mushy posts on Twitter and Instagram on December 11.

Virat and Anushka shared the never-seen-before pictures from their dreamy destination wedding and unseen footage from the wedding ceremony at the Borgo Finocchieto.

The couple also sent out adorable messages to each other with their posts. “It’s heaven, when you don’t sense time passing by… It’s heaven, when you marry a good ‘man’,” wrote Anushka while Virat added: “Can’t believe it’s been a year already because it feels like it happened just yesterday. Time has truly flown by. Happy anniversary to my best friend and my soulmate. Mine forever.”

Vinesh Phogat tied the knot with Somvir Rathee

Star wrestler Vinesh Phogat tied the knot with national level wrestler Somvir Rathee in Haryana on December 13. Vinesh got engaged to Rathee in August after she returned from a successful campaign at the Asian Games in Jakarta. Interestingly, the engagement took place upon her return from Jakarta at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi. The rings were exchanged outside the arrival gates of the airport.

At their wedding, the couple took an additional vow “beti bachao, beti padhao, beti khilao (save daughters, teach daughters and let them play)” during the wedding ceremony in Vinesh’s hometown Charkhi Dadri.

Saina Nehwal and Parupalli Kashyap made a perfect match

Ace badminton star Saina Nehwal tied the knot with Parupalli Kashyap in a minimalistic wedding ceremony on December 14 in Hyderabad.

Both Saina and Kashyap could not qualify for the BWF World Tour Finals in Guangzhou, China and ahead of the new PBL season, the two decided to tie the knot in the little window they got out from their professional commitments.

The couple’s close friends and family members graced the occasion, the wedding reception took place on December 16.

Saina posted a photograph with Kashyap announcing her marriage. “Best match of my life…#justmarried,” she wrote on Twitter.

In other noteworthy events, banned former Australian captain Steve Smith married his long-time girlfriend Dani Willis in a quiet affair on September 15. England’s ODI captain Eoin Morgan tied the knot with his girlfriend Tara Ridgway on November 3. Yuvraj Singh and Hazel Keech celebrated their second marriage anniversary on December 1. Rajasthan Royals’ wicket-keeper batsman Sanju Samson tied the knot with his long-time friend, Charulatha in a low-key ceremony in Thiruvananthapuram on December 23.





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Kashmir Deliberately “Demonised” At National Level: Governor SP Malik


Satya Pal Malik said no one speaks about the positive things happening in Jammu and Kashmir (File)

Jammu: 

Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik said on Friday he felt sad because the state was being deliberately demonised at the national level.

Speaking at an event of the National Health Mission in the winter capital on Friday, Mr Malik noted that the negative and biased approach at the national level towards Jammu and Kashmir has become a major problem for the state.

“I come from a village where the local mortuary receives five to six dead bodies daily, but that does not become news while a death in Kashmir becomes headline in Delhi. It is basically demonising of the state which is very unfortunate,” he said.

No one speaks about the positive things happening in the state, he lamented.

He said the solution to the Kashmir problem lies in the hands of the young generation which is very talented and forward looking.

Youth of Kashmir are performing well in every field and this needs to be highlighted, Mr Malik added.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)





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“We Are Rectifying The Mistake”: WFI Hands Sushil Kumar, Sakshi Malik Grade A Contracts


Terming it as a mistake, the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) on Wednesday announced that the contracts of star grapplers Sushil Kumar and Sakshi Malik have been upgraded to Grade A from B. When the WFI announced the contracts, both Sakshi and Sushil were given grade B contracts. However, rectifying the error, an announcement to upgrade their contracts was made by WFI President Brijbhushan Sharan Singh at the launch of Tata Motors Elite Wrestlers Development Programme in Mumbai. “With your support, we implemented the grading system for the players A, B, C, D, E and F grades.

“However, during the national championships at Gonda when our full body (organisation members) was present, we realised that players like Sushil (Kumar), a two-time Olympic medallist, and Sakshi Malik, who gave the country the first medal when India’s medal tally (at the Rio Olympics was empty). 

“We all unanimously agreed that such players should not be kept in B grade,” Singh said while explaining the WFI’s change of mind. 

Kumar had won a bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and added another silver medal to his kitty at the London Olympics in 2012. Sakshi earned a bronze medal in the Rio Games two years ago. 

“So I would like to admit that it was a mistake (on our part) and we are rectifying the mistake and are now including both the players (Sakshi and Sushil) to A grade,added the WFI President. 

“After Singh’s announcement in Grade A, there are five wrestlers Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Phogat, Pooja Dhanda, Sushil Kumar and Sakshi Malik.

The players in Grade A will get Rs 30 lakhs annually. “Players did not complain about it (grades), neither the media did. But we have rectified the mistake,” Singh informed. 

Now there are no players in Grade B. There are seven players in Grade C, including Divya Kakran and Ritu Phogat, nine players in Grade D, including Rahul Aware, the Commonwealth Games gold medallist. Players in Grade C will get Rs 10 lakhs annually while those in Grade D will get Rs 5 lakhs. There are four players in Grade E who will get Rs 3 lakhs each and U-23 national gold medallists in Grade F, who will be provided Rs 1.20 lakhs per annum.



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CPI(M) On J&K Governor Satya Pal Malik Remark


Governor Satya Pal Malik had earlier said that there was a threat that he could be transferred.

Jammu: 

The CPI(M) said on Tuesday that Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik’s comments on the government formation in Jammu and Kashmir confirmed the apprehensions of the people that the BJP was desperately trying to impose its government on the state by hook or crook.

“The statement of Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik in Gwalior that Sajad Lone would have become chief minister of the state had he sought the opinion of New Delhi before dissolving the legislative assembly confirms the apprehensions of the people that BJP was trying desperately to impose its government on Jammu and Kashmir by hook or crook”, the Jammu and Kashmir CPI(M) said in a statement.

“The CPI(M) had been saying it from Day 1 that the BJP-led Centre’s intentions for keeping the Assembly in suspended animation were not clear and finally the cat is out of the bag,” the statement said.

They were trying to encourage defections and indulge in horse-trading to form a government in the state. Now, the nominee of the Centre, the governor has himself blown the lid off, it added.

Addressing a function in Gwalior on Saturday, the governor had purportedly said he dissolved the state Assembly as he did not want to go down in history as a “dishonest man”.

Mr Malik had abruptly dissolved the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly last week after the PDP staked claim to form a government with the backing of the rival NC and the Congress. This was followed by another bid from the two-member People’s Conference, led by Lone, which claimed the support of the BJP and 18 legislators from other parties.

The CPI(M) said now everything was clear before the people of the state and the country what actually the BJP wanted to do in Jammu and Kashmir. “People of Jammu and Kashmir state have always rejected the divisive designs of communal forces and will do the same in the future”, it added.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)





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Jammu and Kashmir Set For Elections As Governor Satya Pal Malik Stops Horrible Claims To Power: 10 Points


J&K Set For Polls As Governor Stops 'Horrible' Claims To Power: 10 Points

J&K Governor said he decided to dissolve the assembly due to “reports of extensive horse-trading”

Srinagar:  Jammu and Kashmir is headed to elections two years before term with Governor Satya Pal Malik dissolving the assembly on Wednesday evening, a controversial decision that critics say is open to legal challenge. The Governor acted swiftly after two alliances – one supported by the BJP – staked claim to power within minutes of each other. “There was no imminent reason to dissolve it before as “no one had come with a horrible proposition to form government,” the Governor told NDTV this morning. Former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, who had teamed up with her long-time political rival Omar Abdullah and the Congress for a shot at forming government, alleged that the Governor acted on the centre’s orders to block her as the BJP tried to prop up People’s Conference leader Sajad Lone and engineer defections.





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4 Reasons Governor Satya Pal Malik Gave For Dissolving J&K Assembly


Srinagar: 

Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satyapal Malik, whose move to dissolve the state assembly came under criticism today, has cited multiple reasons for the step, including the “impossibility of forming a stable government by the coming together of political parties with opposing political ideologies”. 

In a statement issued late in the evening, the Governor said there were reports of “extensive horse trading”. Underscoring the need for a stable government given the security situation, Mr Malik said there were doubts about “the longevity of any such arrangement where there are competing claims of majority”.  

The decision of Mr Malik, who replaced Governor NN Vohra in August — came after rival claims to form the government. One was from former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, who tied up with arch-rival Omar Abdullah’s National Conference and the Congress. The other claimant was People’s Conference chief Sajad Lone, who is backed by the BJP.

The dissolution of assembly found support from the BJP, whose tie-up with ideologically disparate PDP had unravelled in June. Questioning Ms Mufti’s Grand Alliance, the BJP said in a tweet, “The best option in such a scenario is to go in for a fresh election at the earliest. This assembly cannot produce a stable government”. 

Mr Abdullah and Ms Mufti — who have been at loggerheads for years — intensely criticised the decision, questioning its timing. They also cracked jokes on Twitter about the fax machine in Raj Bhavan which, Ms Mufti claimed, had failed to receive her letter.   

The Congress, meanwhile, added a twist to Ms Mufti’s claim. Senior party leader Ghulam Nabi Azad indicated their talks were at a nascent stage. “Neither was National Conference keen to form a government, the Congress was not keen at all to form a government. It was a suggestion,” Mr Azad told NDTV.

“The proposed alliance between the INC and the PDP broke up even before it was formed. They have taken contradictory positions on dissolution. One supports it and the other opposes it,” jeered the BJP, which had been discussing an alliance with Sajad Lone for weeks.

Mr Lone, who has two lawmakers in the assembly including himself, had claimed support of the 26 lawmakers of the BJP. He also said he had the support of “more than 18 other lawmakers”. While he did not specify which party they belonged to, the buzz was that most of them were from Ms Mufti’s PDP.

Later in the evening, PDP’s rebel lawmaker Imran Ansari told reporters that if the Governor called them for a floor test, “we would’ve shown our members”. Now, election is the only option, he said, adding, “If Mehbooba-ji thinks it’s undemocratic, she has a lot of options in this democratic country”.  

The governor’s advice for dissolution of the assembly will pave way for elections in the state within the next six months. The tenure of the governor’s rule is ending next month, which will be followed by President’s rule.





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