One of the most talked about goal droughts in English football has finally come to an end after 913 days!Saido Berahino, once thought to be a future England star, netted his first goal in two and a half years to put Stoke 1-0 to the good against Huddersfield Town in the Carabao Cup. The 25-year-old was considered a potential star as a young player but was hampered by a bust-up with Tony Pulis at West Brom and has failed to follow through on that early promise. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! He has now become something a joke in some circles, with his inability to find the net sparking a raft of memes on social media. But those may now come to a close with his goal for Stoke City, a headed effort after James McClean’s shot came back off the woodwork and fell kindly for the forward. It ended a run of playing time that spanned 40 hours and 26 minutes of football over 48 appearances.In between strikes for Berahino, with the last competitive goal he scored coming for West Brom against Crystal Palace in February 2016, fellow 25-year-old Englishman Harry Kane has netted 103 times. And while Kane is among the top strikers in world football now, it shows the massive gap between the promising young talent who didn’t pan out and the one who did. 913 – Stoke City’s Saido Berahino has scored his first club goal in 913 days since he scored for West Brom against Crystal Palace in February 2016, ending a run of 48 matches without scoring in all competitions. Finally. #CarabaoCup— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 28, 2018But the run is over, and maybe Berahino can use his latest strike to kick-start a better run for his career.
Fernando Santos believes Portugal will be a different prospect with the return of Cristiano Ronaldo, but says his side will be stronger in the long term for having more options.Juventus star Ronaldo was absent during the international window, choosing to rest up having played the World Cup and with the domestic season set to truly kick into gear with the return of the Champions League.In the absence of their talisman, Portugal registered a 1-1 friendly draw against Croatia before starting their Nations League campaign with a 1-0 win over Italy on Monday. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! Andre Silva was the difference maker in Lisbon and head coach Santos, while eagerly anticipating the return of his leading marksman, is happy with how his team stepped up without Ronaldo.”I think my team gets stronger with the best in the world [Ronaldo]. Obviously. We will always be strong with the world’s number one,” he said. “But he was not there. Therefore, I think the players who have been called up took advantage of the opportunity to play here, knowing the great confidence I had in them. 147 – André Silva has the second best minutes per goal ratio for Portugal among all active players (min. 10 goals), scoring every 147 minutes – only Cristiano Ronaldo has a better ratio than him (137 mins/goal). Menace. pic.twitter.com/QoFn8f7ZPv — OptaJoao (@OptaJoao) September 10, 2018 “They tried to do their best in training and games, they followed our ideas and that is good for Portuguese football. Well, Portuguese football is stronger with more options.”I believe in this team, if we are in a favourable position, it is because we have more options and we can go further. I believe in this team and I always believed.”
Christian Eriksen scored the only goal at Wembley as Tottenham edged past Inter 1-0 to keep their Champions League last-16 hopes alive.The Italians had looked like leaving London with the point they needed to secure their place in the knockout stages and dump Spurs out, but substitute Eriksen lashed home with 10 minutes remaining to move Mauricio Pochettino’s side level on points with them. Tottenham now travel to Group B leaders Barcelona – who have already qualified for the knockout stages – in two weeks’ time knowing that a win would see them join Ernesto Valverde’s side in the next round. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! Spurs – who hit the crossbar through Harry Winks in the first half – had looked set for disappointment until Eriksen finished a fine team move involving Moussa Sissoko and Dele Alli to keep them firmly in the hunt for second place.FULL-TIME: @ChrisEriksen8’s late strike keeps our hopes of #UCL qualification alive! #COYS pic.twitter.com/2d5qR3FXMo— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) November 28, 2018Harry Kane was denied by Samir Handanovic at his near post, while Alli fizzed over the crossbar from 20 yards as Tottenham started brightly.Erik Lamela flashed wide from distance shortly before the halfway mark in the first half, while Lucas Moura fired straight at Handanovic after a swashbuckling run from Sissoko.Pochettino’s dominant side came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock seven minutes before the interval, but Winks’ curling effort from 25 yards crashed back off the crossbar.Inter started to come out of their shell in the second period with Milan Skriniar prodding wide at the back post and Ivan Perisic denied by Hugo Lloris.The visitors’ backline looked set to hold firm, but Eriksen – who scored in September’s 2-1 defeat to Luciano Spalletti’s side at San Siro – had other ideas.The Denmark international showed superb composure to thump past Handanovic from eight yards after being teed up by Alli to keep his side’s Champions League adventure alive for at least another fortnight. What does it mean? Spurs leave it lateOne point from their opening three games looked to have ended Tottenham’s hopes of reaching the knockout stages, but they have proved they are made of stern stuff under Pochettino with two wins on the spin putting qualification in their own hands. Inter will be kicking themselves for letting a point slip through their grasp and now need to better Spurs’ result against Barca when they take on PSV.Winks looks the partThe 22-year-old has not looked out of place on Europe’s biggest stage this season and again proved why he is so highly rated by Tottenham with a composed display. He was only the width of a crossbar away from scoring a superb goal in the first half.Lamela lucky to avoid redThe Argentina international endured a difficult game, too often making the wrong choice when in promising positions. He can also count himself very lucky not to have received his marching orders for an ugly tackle on Marcelo Brozovic.Key Opta Facts- Inter have never drawn in an away Champions League match against an English side (W3 L5).- Inter have failed to score in three of their last four away games in Champions League.- Tottenham and Inter are two of the seven sides yet to find the back of the net during the first 30 minutes of any game in the Champions League this season.- Borja Valero made his 50th Inter appearance in all competitions.What’s next?Tottenham return to Premier League action on Sunday with a mouth-watering north London derby against Arsenal, while Inter face a difficult visit to Roma in Serie A on the same day. read more
sparks row (EDs: Updating with reaction from CBSE)New Delhi, Apr 12 (PTI) Excerpts from a class XII Physical Education textbook defining 36-24-36 as the “best body shape for females” have created an outrage on social media with critics demanding that the text be withdrawn.The incident comes against the backdrop of a raging debate on lack of scrutiny of the curriculum and content taught in schools.The book titled “Health and Physical Education” written by Dr VK Sharma and published by Delhi-based New Saraswati House, is taught at various schools affiliated to CBSE.CBSE, however, clarified that it “does not recommend any books by private publishers in its schools”.”36-24-36 shape of females is considered the best. That is why in Miss World or Miss Universe competitions, such type of shape is also taken into consideration,” read an excerpt from the chapter “Physiology and Sports” which is going viral.Various Twitter users shared picture of the mentioned text and demanded that the publishers withdraw the content and schools replace the book in their curriculum.In a statement, the CBSE said, “Schools are expected to exercise extreme care while selecting books of private publishers and the content must be scrutinised to preclude any objectionable content that hurts the feeling of any class, community, gender, religious group. Schools have to take responsibility of the content of the books prescribed by them.”This, however, is not the first incident about improper content being found in textbooks taught in CBSE schools in recent months.advertisementExcerpts from a class IV environmental science textbook that suggested students to “kill a kitten” as part of an experiment had gone viral on social media, forcing the publisher to withdraw it from the market last month.Similarly, a class XII Sociology book cited “ugliness” and physical disability of a girl as reasons behind the dowry issue prevalent in the country.The HRD Ministry had last month said that CBSE has no mechanism to evaluate the quality of textbooks of private publishers.”There is no mechanism to evaluate the quality of textbooks of private publishers. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has no mandate to prescribe or recommend the textbooks of private publishers in its affiliated schools,” Minister of State for HRD Upendra Kushwaha had said in response to a written question in Lok Sabha. PTI GJS KIS
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Launched back in February, Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom is now available to the consumers, but only in the US. However, if the rumours are to be believed, the device is expected to hit the Indian shores very soon. However, no confirmation from the company as of now. The smartphone like its predecessor — ZenFone Zoom offers excellent photography experience and battery backup.Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom is the successor of the previously announced ZenFone Zoom. The smartphone was launched at $399, which should be roughly around Rs 25,800. But, it surprisingly available at a much cheaper price tag.The smartphone at present goes up on sale in the US market at a price tag of $329, which in India would cost around Rs 21,261. This means that the ZenFone 3 Zoom gets a price cut of approx Rs 4,000. The key highlight of the smartphone is its battery, and of course the camera like the ZenFone Zoom. On the optics front, Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom competes pretty well with its predecessor – ZenFone Zoom, which also includes optical zoom and focuses on mobile photography.Also Read: OnePlus 5 apparently beats Samsung Galaxy S8, Sony Xperia XZ Premium at GeekbenchAsus ZenFone 3 Zoom comes with optical zoom and dual cameras at the back. The smartphone comes with 12-megapixel sensors at the rear panel wherein one of them comes packed with a f/1.7-aperture and 25 mm wide-angle lens. While, on the other hand, the second sensor includes a 59 mm camera for instant 2.3X optical zoom. Furthermore, said to be excellent in mobile photography, the Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom also comes with a new autofocusing feature called TriTech+.advertisementTriTech+ reportedly uses a laser autofocus system, subject tracking, and dual pixel phase detection autofocus technologies. On the front panel, the ZenFone 3 Zoom features a 13 MP front-facing selfie camera. Apart from the camera, the smartphone delivers excellent battery backup. Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom is backed by a huge 5000 mAh battery. Well, that being said, the upcoming and the most-awaited OnePlus 5 is expected to be backed by a 3400mAh, similar to that of its predecessor – OnePlus 3T.The company claims that the smartphone has the ability to last up to 42 days on standby. On the other hand, the device also comes with the ability to support up to 6.4 hours of non-stop 4K video recording.Also Read: OnePlus 5 summer launch confirmed, fresh leaks confirm dual cameraIn terms of other specifications, the Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom sports a 5.5-inch 1080p display, which is further protected by a Gorilla Glass 5. The smartphone is further powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor and is coupled with 3GB of RAM. On the storage front, the smartphone includes a 32GB internal storage. It also includes a fingerprint sensor on the back right below the rear camera set-up.In the US, the Asus ZenFone 3 Zoom is reportedly shipping with Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow. Currently, the smartphone is available on several online stores in the US. However, if the rumours are to be believed the device might hit the Indian shores soon. Well, for now, the coming of the device to India is just a rumour and should be taken with a pinch of salt until Asus confirms itself.Asus is currently working on another phone, dubbed — ZenFone 4 Max. The smartphone has already been subjected to several rumours and leaks. In terms of the specifications, the upcoming ZenFone phone is expected to come with a 5.5-inch display, and will either be powered by Snapdragon 625 or 660. Asus is yet to confirm the device.
Joe Root does not admit to being a natural leader but England’s new Test captain says the time spent as Alastair Cook’s understudy has groomed him for the responsibility.The elegant right-hander has established himself as one of the premier batsmen of his generation across all formats, putting him among such luminaries as India’s Virat Kohli and New Zealander Kane Williamson.The 26-year-old can also expect to take on the illustrious duo in tactical battles after joining them as a Test captain of their respective national sides, making his debut in the role in England’s home series against South Africa starting on July 6.”I wouldn’t say I’m necessarily a natural leader but becoming more senior within the side and being vice-captain over the last few years will definitely help in that respect,” England’s batting mainstay told Sky Sports.While he can always draw on Cook’s experience after spending four years in an England side led by the Essex opener, Root is also keen to possess the grit of Nasser Hussain and the positive leadership of Michael Vaughan.”A balance of those two and someone like Mike Brearley… the way he was able to manage so many big characters, all in one dressing room, and get the best out of them, turn a series around against Australia (in 1981)…” he said.As a leader, the Yorkshireman said, he would be thorough in preparation but would always trust his instinct.”I want it to be quite natural, not have all these grand plans in place and then something change or not go to plan and then feel like you’re back to square one. I want to be quite instinctive with it from the start.advertisement”I think (being instinctive) has been one of my big strengths as a player, as a batsman, and I think it would be silly not to go with something that has served me so well in other departments.”Root has inherited a Test side teeming with match-winners and believes all-rounder Ben Stokes will prove vital to England’s progress.”He is going to play a massive role,” Root said of his deputy. “You’ve seen how his cricket has developed over the last year or so and he is the sort of person, the more you give him, the more you get from him.”I think it’s great that he’s got this chance to become a bit more of a leader in the dressing room, as vice-captain.”So he, along with the other senior guys like Stuart Broad, Jimmy Anderson and Cooky, obviously, will be massive for us moving forward,” Root added.
Vijay Mallya has quit as Indian motorsport body’s top representative in the world body FIA after intervention from the sports ministry.Mallya, who is facing extradition to India over unpaid debts for the defunct Kingfisher Airlines, resigned ahead of the last meeting of FIA’s World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) in June, following the ministry’s directive to Federation of Motor Sports Club of India (FMSCI).FMSCI can now only nominate a new representative to the FIA in December as a national body cannot nominate anyone in between the stipulated tenure.Former FMSCI president Vicky Chandhok was deputy to Mallya at the FIA and has attended all the meetings ever since the Indian passport of the troubled businessman was revoked.Current FMSCI boss Akbar Ebrahim refused to comment on the subject.The official FMSCI website promptly removed the names of Mallya and Chandhok from the list of its FIA representatives.Earlier this year, Mallya was also removed as FMSCI honorary chairman as a result of his mounting troubles.
“Ek din yeh sab kuch nahi rahega. Sab apni apni gali nikal jaayenge. … Wahi duniya de jhamele. Naukri dhoondo, paise kamao, ghar basao, life di ishaaro pe nachde jaao. College di gate de iss taraf hum life ko nachate hai, te dujji taraf life humko nachati hai…”If you belong to the section of people who have watched Rang De Basanti, you would know that DJ was probably one of the most well-written ‘mentor-friend’ characters we have ever come across in Hindi cinema. Just the sheer relatability of Aamir Khan’s words in the film is enough to make you root for the character all along. And that is the reason DJ from Rang De Basanti still lives and breathes in every urban college-goer/youngster’s heart… 11 long years after we bid goodbye to DJ and his gang. Except, maybe we never quite did.RANG DE BASANTIIt was DJ who was the adhesive in the group of youngsters we saw in that Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra film. The slightly crazy friend who can go to any lengths for his pals. The friend who knows when to scold you and when to back you. Who does not need to say it out loud that he will be with you till your last breath; literally, in Rang De Basanti.Tim lak-lak te tim lak-lak.LAGAANAamir Khan has displayed a knack of making films with an underlying, or over-arching at times, social message. Most of his films post Lagaan have made us fall in love with his characters mostly because of the wrapped-in-entertainment gyaan that they have gifted us. Take Lagaan, for example. We saw Bhuvan the farmer declaring open rebellion against the British and their system of extorting lagaan from the villagers in that tiny hamlet of Champanagar. Bhuvan took on the role of teaching his fellow villagers the firangi game of cricket, and we saw the results at the end of Lagaan. Not only did he manage to get the tiguna-lagaan waived off, his efforts took Lagaan to the Oscars too. Well, with ample help from director Ashutosh Gowarikar and the rest of the team of Lagaan.advertisementDIL CHAHTA HAIThen came Dil Chahta Hai. Aakash with his goatee had all of ’em girls falling head over heels in love with him. Steered along by Akshaye Khanna and Saif Ali Khan, Aamir played yet another character that carved a place for itself in the mindscape of the country. A bildungsroman, Dil Chahta Hai showed the evolution of a wayward college kid Aakash with his aaj-Pooja-toh-kal-koi-dooja mantra, falling in love one day and falling out of love the other; to the Aakash consumed by the Sisyphian cycle of work-home-tanhaayi in faraway Australia. Aakash loved his friends, fought with them, left them thoroughly disappointed and came back to mend the broken hearts. Aamir the mentor-friend saved the day again. Would you say no to a friend like Aakash?TAARE ZAMEEN PARWe saw Aamir as an out-and-out mentor in Taare Zameen Par, the man whose Midas touch transformed the life of 8-year-old Ishaan Awasthi. All of us who have had to face hard times in school, a strict parent at home, all our hearts went out to Ishaan. We were all left wishing we too had a teacher like Nikumbh in our lives. And why not. Aamir worked his way to our hearts with Taare Zameen Par, leaving us with a rock-sized lump in our throats. Aamir in Taare Zameen Par gave the country a teacher to look up to, a mentor to wish for and a friend to lean on.3 IDIOTSWhat Aamir achieved with Taare Zameen Par was a re-look at India’s education system. From helping expose the flaws in the way students are treated in our schools, Aamir moved to colleges in 3 Idiots. He played the unforgettable Rancho in 3 Idiots. Yet again, he was a friend that you wished you had in your life. He doesn’t bat an eyelid when he has to steal a question paper from ‘Virus’s’ office in the middle of the night for a friend, but will not sneak a peek at it because he believes in making it on his own. If Rancho would have asked any of us to take a train to learning, a la ‘Millimetre’, none of us would have wanted to let go of that moksha. Rancho helped turn around the lives of not just his friends Raju and Farhan, but even the principal of his college, Viru Shahastrabuddhe. And of course, who can forget the Phunsuk Wangdu-named spell on Chatur!advertisementPKIn 2014’s PK, Aamir shed his clothes but left India’s billions-worth godmen industry exposed, naked. The alien PK taught us all the importance of rationality, showed us how to question blind faith and chased a bahurupi through the lanes of Delhi, albeit with dire consequences in the form of complaints and protests. But what PK the film and Aamir did with the film is left a section of people in the country very, very uncomfortable. On the one hand when we had audiences lapping up PK like a plate of hot jalebis, on the other hand we had godmen up in arms against it. Despite all of that, PK still is among the biggest blockbusters India has produced… even China would agree.DANGALAnd to last year’s Dangal.”Mhare chhoriya chhoro se kam hai ke?” is a question that shook our collective conscience when a grey-haired pot-bellied Aamir asked it. Dangal documented the journey of the godawfully strict father who pushed his daughters to get home the elusive ‘gold’ in wrestling, a man’s sport. Aamir the father, Aamir the mentor, made sure Dangal was written in film history as one of India’s finest films. And that is not even taking into account the kind of success the film achieved at the box office. As of today, Dangal is the highest grossing Indian film ever.Now we have him in Secret Superstar. Wand firmly in hand, Aamir the magician-mentor is ready to have us dance to his charm all over again.Tim lak-lak te tim lak-lak.(The writer tweets as @ananya116)ALSO SEE: Aamir guides Zaira Wasim through life and music in Secret Superstar trailerALSO SEE: Dangal’s China run ends, Aamir gets moving tributeALSO WATCH: Dangal Movie Review
Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic is enjoying the positive dressing room atmosphere at his new club and believes that such team spirit will help the club cope with pressure over a long season.United have won each of their first two Premier League games 4-0 and are top of the table on goal difference. Their dominance against West Ham United and Swansea City earned praise and fuelled fans’ hopes of a first league title since 2013.Matic, who joined United from champions Chelsea in July, played a key part in Jose Mourinho’s side picking up consecutive victories and the Serbian credits the results to the players’ unity off the pitch rather than individual performances.”It’s just the beginning of the season, but I am confident,” Matic said.”It’s always special when you play for Manchester United and there is always pressure, but we are ready to cope with that.”Reuters PhotoUnited will return to the Champions League next month after winning the Europa League in May.”The group is great, we are all friends in the changing room and that’s very important. The season is long, so we have to have a good group, have good communication, and this team has that. I’m happy to be a part of this.”Matic says the team are not becoming overconfident after notching two wins and are looking ahead to Saturday’s match against Leicester City, champions in 2015-16.”We’re not getting carried away…we’re two games into the season and we’ve got another tough game against Leicester City next week, which won’t be easy. I’m just pleased to be playing,” Matic added.advertisement
HTC, a couple of months ago confirmed that three of its smartphones will be upgraded to the latest software aka Android Oreo. These devices are HTC U11, HTC U Ultra, and HTC 10. The Taiwanese company back then said that the mentioned devices will get the Oreo update by Q4. Now a report circulating all around the internet suggests that the HTC is already in talks with Google to update all the three phones to Oreo by November. But then, the company, mentioning the roll out timeline only says Q4 and didn’t mention any month as of yet.Soon after Google announced Oreo back in the month of August it said that Pixel and Nexus phones are going to be the first ones to get the new software update. The company further mentioned that it is also in talks with other smartphone makers to upgrade some of their devices to Oreo. Google is reportedly working with Essential, General Mobile, HMD Global Home of Nokia Phones, Huawei, HTC, Kyocera, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Sharp, and Sony to bring the Oreo update to some of their devices.HTC back in August tweeted the coming of Oreo to HTC U11, HTC U Ultra, and HTC 10. The company confirmed this via a tweet where it wrote, “We’re excited to bring Android 8.0 to the HTC U11, U Ultra, & 10, beginning with U11 in Q4. Stay tuned for more Oreo details & new products!”Now a new report reveals that the Oreo roll out to all three HTC phones will happen in the upcoming month – November. This bit of information comes from a HTC leaker LlabTooFeR. According to the leaked report, HTC U11 Android Oreo update is in its final stage of development and this possibly why the company may bring the Oreo update in November.advertisementAlso Read: HTC U11 review: Sense and sensibilityMeanwhile, the Taiwanese based smartphone manufacture is planning to announce a new phone on Nov 2. HTC has already started sending out press invite for the launch event, but as of now hasn’t confirmed the name of the device. However, chances are HTC may either unveil an Android One edition of the U11 which will be called HTC U11 Life or the successor of it aka the U11 Plus.However, a new report that leaked online recently suggests that HTC will be launching the Android One edition of the HTC U11 which is the U11 Life. On the other hand, the U11 Plus is recently spotted on TENNA certification site. Going by the Chinese certification site, the smartphone – U11 Plus will come with a bezel-less display. It shows thin bezels at the top and bottom. The phone is further seen with glossy finish at the back side. The rear panel further fits the camera at the center, below which is the fingerprint sensor.Going by the specs, HTC U11 Plus is expected to feature a 6-inch WQHD+ display with an 18:9 aspect ratio and will be powered by the latest processor by Qualcomm, which is the Snapdragon 835 chipset. The Plus edition is further tipped to come in two variants, one with 4GB of RAM with 64GB of internal storage, while the second model may come with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage. In the imaging department, TENNA shows that the phone may come with a 12-megapixel rear camera along with f/1.7 aperture and dual-LED flash. While on the front the device is said to sport an 8-megapixel camera.
With so many decisions to make before and during one’s own wedding, looking one’s absolute best becomes a bit cumbersome. That’s clearly not the case with celebrity couples, though, especially if they’ve had somewhat of a secret wedding with no one but just close relatives in attendance.We’re talking about the couple of the hour, Anushka Sharma and Virat Kohli–the two went away on a “secret getaway” to Tuscany, Italy, only to make a lifelong commitment of love to one another. And while they did that, both of them ended up looking the best they have so far.So, what is it that went into making one of the most good-looking bride and groom of Indian entertainment industry look this good? We take a look…Anushka’s lehengaPicture courtesy: Instagram/sabyasachiofficialAnushka Sharma wore a pale-pink lehenga with delicate embroidery by Sabyasachi, and looked more radiant than ever. What really worked for the actress were the vintage English colours of the lehenga’s embroidery–it was majorly done in pink, mild green, yellow and just a dash of peacock blue. This delicate embroidery was then embellished with silver-gold metal thread, pearls and beads, which lent the lehenga the subtle vibe it boasted of.The fact that Anushka wore a garland made of fully bloomed, pale-pink and yellow roses to complement the colours of her lehenga also worked wonders for her look.Virat’s sherwaniPicture courtesy: Instagram/sabyasachiofficialIt’s not every day that you see cricketer Virat Kohli donning a sherwani. When he did, however, he made for one dashing groom!advertisementWhile Virat matched steps with Anushka, choosing a pale-pink sherwani for his big day, what made Virat’s look really stand out was his royal, silk turban (safa) and the jewel embellishment atop it, especially the delicate feather.Virat’s raw-silk sherwani by Sabyasachi Mukherjee was hand-embroidered in a vintage Benarasi pattern and sported royal-looking buttons.Anushka’s jewellery Picture courtesy: Instagram/sabyasachiofficialAs exquisite as Anushka’s lehenga was, it was her uncut-diamond jewellery by Sabyachi that elevated her look to a whole new level of regal.The uncut-diamond choker Anushka wore with her wedding attire boasted of pale-pink spinel stones and baroque Japanese cultured pearls.Picture courtesy: Instagram/sabyasachiofficialDespite wearing three very heavy pieces of jewellery–chocker, headband and long necklace– Anushka’s bridal look was not even close to gaudy, thanks to the subtlety and consistency of colours throughout her attire.Vitrat’s embroidered stolePicture courtesy: Instagram/sabyasachiofficial In place of jewellery, Virat decided to embellish his look with a rather exquisitely embroidered stole (or dupatta). The gold, zardosi work on Virat’s pink, silk stole lent his groom demeanour a rather royal touch, making him look absolutely regal for one of the biggest days of his life. Picture courtesy: Instagram/sabyasachiofficial
Virat Kohli is revered as the most prolific run-getter in the one-day format currently but his deputy Rohit Sharma has been matching and sometimes even bettering the Indian skipper in 50 overs cricket in the last three years.Rohit on Wednesday smashed his third one-day double hundred, scoring an unbeaten 208 off 153 balls to guide India to a 141-run victory over Sri Lanka in the second ODI at Mohali.Rohit already holds the record for crossing 200 on more than one occasion and also holds the world record for the highest individual score in ODIs with his 264 against Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens in 2014.In Rohit and Kohli, India thus, have two of the most consistent run-scorers in the ODI format.The duo is joint-second in the list of most hundreds since 2015 with 11 each, just one behind Australian opener David Warner.Rohit however, has taken just 47 matches to score 11 tons while Kohli has done it in 56 ODIs. During the same period of time Rohit has amassed 2665 runs at an average of 63.45 with 11 half-centuries while Kohli, having played 9 more ODIs than Rohit, has scored 2822 at 64.13 with 12 fifties.”This year, he’s scored as many hundreds as Virat Kohli. We keep talking about Virat Kohli and how great he is in one day cricket but look at Rohit. He is no way behind, 11 hundreds in 50 odd innings (since 2015).”I have always said that he’s a terrific batsman and a match-winner. Hopefully he can transform his renewed hunger for runs, his renewed ability to convert hundreds into double hundreds in the next 10 months. The shots he played was absolutely breathtaking,” Sourav Ganguly told India Today after the Mohali game.advertisementThis year alone the Hitman has scored 1286 runs in 20 ODIs at 75.64 and could very well surpass his captain in the final ODI against Sri Lanka at Vizag. Kohli has played six more matches than Rohit this year and scored 1460 runs at 76.84 at a strike rate of just over 99. Rohit has been getting his runs at exactly 100 runs per 100 balls.Both players occupy the top-two spots in the list of batsmen with most runs this year and are the only two players to cross 1000 runs in 2017.Rohit is 174 runs behind Kohli with one game remaining but nobody can bet against the stand-in skipper ending up with the most runs this year because of the form he is in right now and with Kohli on a break for his marriage with Anushka Sharma in Italy.Kohli is a modern-day great with the reputation of being the best chaser in cricket history. Rohit on the other hand, is at his best when India bats first because then he gets the time to pace his innings without being under too much pressure.Even at Mohali, like his other two double hundreds, Rohit started off very slowly scoring his first fifty in 65 balls. But from there on he went into beast mode smashing a run-a-ball fifty and then needed just 36 balls to score his next hundred runs in the death overs.By the end of the innings, Rohit had smashed 13 boundaries and cleared the big boundaries of the PCA stadium 12 times.Rohit beats Kohli in terms of runs scored after crossing the three-figure mark in ODIs since 2001. The Mumbai batsman has amassed 812 runs in 16 innings while Kohli has 665 runs in 32 innings.Coach Ravi Shastri and the Indian team management must be grinning from ear to ear having two of the best batsmen in world cricket in its arsenal. In Rohit, the Men in Blue have the best opener in ODI cricket and in Kohli, the best chaser in the modern game.
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic — Thousands of people in the Dominican Republic greeted new baseball Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez after he landed Jan. 10 in his homeland aboard a private plane bearing his country’s flag.A caravan greeted the former Boston Red Sox pitcher at the airport and took him to a public park in Santo Domingo, where a crowd lined a 19-mile stretch of highway to catch a glimpse of him.Once at the park, Martinez went on stage accompanied by players David Ortiz and Robinson Cano as merengue music played and fireworks lit up the sky.“This is only the beginning,” he said. “I now pass the torch to those behind me, to Sammy Sosa, to Vladimir Guerrero, to David Ortiz, to the younger generation.”The 43-year-old Martinez was voted into the Hall of Fame on Jan. 6, becoming only the second Dominican to receive that honor. Former San Francisco Giants pitcher Juan Marichal was elected in 1983.“I want to dedicate this to the Dominican people,” Martinez said with a wide smile as he spoke at a news conference shortly after arriving.His mother was among the dozens of people who greeted him at the airport. “I’m so grateful to God,” Leopoldina Martinez said.She recalled a conversation they once had after her son injured his shoulder, with her telling him, “If you can’t handle the pain, bear it, but you need to end your career clean,” she said, referring to concerns she had about banned substances.“Thank God my son recognized that money isn’t everything, and that he thought of himself and he thought of me,” she said.The slightly built Martinez said he remained clean throughout his career despite several teammates being sanctioned for steroid use.“I’m not going to deny that I maybe could have earned an extra $20 or $30 million,” he said, adding, “No one in the major leagues can buy the name Martinez off my back. That’s why I didn’t choose any shortcuts.”Among the thousands of fans who greeted Martinez was Dave Hagman, a retired U.S. citizen from Minnesota who was in the Dominican Republic for charity work. He arrived with three other friends, even though he’s a Minnesota Twins fan.“We like Martinez’s style,” he said.“This is the most generous Three Kings Day that our country has had,” wrote President Danilo Medina in a letter he sent to Martinez after calling to congratulate him.Martinez finished with a 219-100 record and a 2.93 ERA. He struck out 3,154 batters, twice surpassing 300 in a season. He was an eight-time All-Star, and five times led the majors in ERA. He also won a Cy Young Award with the Montreal Expos.(EZEQUIEL ABIU LOPEZ)TweetPinShare0 Shares
TweetPinShare0 Shares PHOENIX — The Super Bowl, at its most basic level, is a game that determines the NFL championship.It has become so much more since the first game was played in 1967.Super Bowl Sunday has become an unofficial holiday in the United States, a day when families and friends to gather to watch the game, the over-the-top commercials and big-name musical acts at halftime.The game and the two weeks of hype, parties and the annual Media Day leading up it have turned the Super Bowl into a spectacle along the lines of the Olympics or World Cup, a royal wedding or papal celebration, the Oscars or Grammys.A rundown of what makes the Super Bowl so special:___FABRIC OF AMERICABaseball is known as America’s pastime, but football is woven into the country’s fabric.The NFL’s rise came at the same time as television’s and turned into a $9 billion enterprise. The NFL season has far fewer games than the other major North American sports — 16 compared to 162 in baseball — which makes every game an event.But once the season gets to the Super Bowl, many of the fans don’t get a chance to go. Tickets started around $800 for this year’s and most are snapped up by corporations, creating an American version of the Prawn Sandwich Brigade, those European soccer fans who attend games for the corporate hospitality rather than cheer on the teams.___WHERE IT’S PLAYEDCities bid for the right to host the Super Bowl and many use the game as a rallying point to build a new stadium and bring in revenue.The game is rotated every year, usually to a warm-weather city or one with a domed stadium.Last year’s game was played in the stadium the New York Jets and Giants share in East Rutherford, New Jersey — the first outdoor game in a cold-weather city — and future games will be in San Francisco, Houston and Minneapolis.Arizona’s University of Phoenix Stadium, site of this year’s games, has a retractable roof and a field that is wheeled outside so the grass can get sunlight.___TELEVISION AUDIENCEThe Super Bowl is one of the most-watched events in the world, routinely drawing more than 80 million viewers every year since 1990. The game has eclipsed 100 million viewers each of the past five years, with a record 111.5 million watching Seattle roll over Denver a year ago.Millions more watch the game around the world.___THE COMMERCIALSSuper Bowl commercials have become a part of the show, luring in non-sports fans who might not otherwise watch the game.The trend of making get-them-talking commercials started in 1984, when Apple created a memorable 1-minute spot based on George Orwell’s 1984. Since then, the commercials have included talking animals and babies, supermodels and Clydesdales, sophomoric humor and tear-jerking moments.The rate for this year’s game is $4.5 million for a 30-second spot.___GAMBLINGAccording to the American Gaming Association, Americans will place $3.8 billion in illegal bets on the Super Bowl this year. Nevada sports books hauled in a record $19.7 million in legal wagers on last year’s game.The Super Bowl also has some of the most exotic proposition bets anywhere.For this year’s game, bettors can put money on the what color Gatorade will be dumped on the winning coach, how long Idina Menzel will take to sing the Star-Spangled Banner, whether Patriots coach Bill Belichick will smile on camera during the game and the color of pop star Katy Perry’s hair when she performs during the halftime show.___HALFTIME SHOWThe halftime show has become must-watch TV instead of just a throw-in with the game.This year’s halftime show will feature Perry and rock guitarist Lenny Kravitz, extending a long line of big-name performers that has included Bruce Springsteen, The Who, Prince, Madonna and Bruno Mars with the Red Hot Chili Peppers last year.And, of course, everyone remembers Janet Jackson’s “wardrobe malfunction” while performing with Justin Timberlake in 2004.___MEDIA DAYOriginally set up for media members to have access to every player on both teams, the annual Media Day has become an event in itself, a spectacle filled with sometimes-wacky questions and attention-grabbing stunts.In 2008, a reporter from Mexico’s TV Azteca wore a wedding dress and asked New England’s Tom Brady to marry her. Another media day featured a reporter showing up with a puppet of Pittsburgh’s Troy Polamalu, calling it his son.Thousands of media members attend Media Day and fans can buy tickets to watch the festivities for $28.50.___THE PARTIESOutside of the Oscars or Grammys, there may not be a bigger place for celebrity parties than the Super Bowl.The parties before the big game are almost all star-studded and this year’s bashes include DirecTv Saturday Night with Rihanna, Nelly performing at Playboy’s and Drake at Bootsy Bellows’ Pop Up. There also will be live performances in the Phoenix area by Snoop Dogg, Imagine Dragons, Enrique Iglesias with Pitbull and Zac Brown Band.Millions of fans also gather in households around the country to watch the game together.
TweetPinShare0 Shares CLEVELAND — Michael Brantley saw what his teammates had in mind and took off toward the safety of the outfield.As he sprinted away, Corey Kluber pursued Brantley with a water gun and Francisco Lindor had two bottles.Walk-off wins have been scarce this season, and the Indians wanted to celebrate this one in style.Brantley’s RBI single with one out in the 16th inning lifted Cleveland to a 5-4 victory over the skidding New York Yankees, who lost their fourth straight and had their lead over Toronto in the AL East trimmed to one-half game.Brantley hit a hard single off Branden Pinder (0-2) that first baseman Mark Teixeira couldn’t handle and easily scored Jose Ramirez from second base, ending the 5-hour, 4-minute game and triggering just the second walk-off winning celebration by the Indians this season.Following a slew of trades, the Indians have been sparked by the arrival of some new players and young ones finding their stride. Cleveland has won three straight and there’s a noticeable change in the atmosphere in the clubhouse.“It was a fun game to be a part of because we’ve been fighting all year to try to get a personality or identity,” manager Terry Francona said.“And then all of a sudden we’ve got a bunch of new guys and we seem to kind of be finding it. They played with enthusiasm the whole night, even when it would get frustrating they kept playing and having fun doing it.”The clubhouse sound system was turned way up following the game as players dressed. After some tough months, maybe the final two will be better than expected.Austin Adams (2-0) worked a perfect inning and combined with seven other Cleveland pitchers to record 16 strikeouts.The Indians, who rallied to tie with two runs in the 10th off Yankees closer Andrew Miller, held the top four hitters in New York’s lineup — Jacoby Ellsbury, Brett Gardner, Alex Rodriguez and Teixeira — to a combined 1 for 25.Indians infielder Chris Johnson, who arrived in Cleveland last week in a trade from Atlanta, went 3-for-4 and is 7-for-8 in his two starts. Also, Abraham Almonte has been a pleasant surprise with his hustle.The new faces have injected life into the Indians and rookies Lindor and Giovanny Urshela are gaining confidence with each game.“The new guys have come in and swung the bat real well, so that helps,” Francona said. “They’re not coming in and searching and trying to figure out who their friends are or who they’re going to hang out with or if they’re going to play. So that helps a lot. Almonte has come in and played so hard. Everything he does is going 100 percent. It’s kind of contagious.”The Yankees came in with their bats sound asleep, and Indians starter Carlos Carrasco kept them that way.The Bronx Bombers were shut out in consecutive games over the weekend by Toronto, and Carrasco blanked them for the first five innings, running New York’s scoreless drought to 31 innings — the club’s longest since 1991 — before Stephen Drew opened the sixth with his 14th homer.It was the first run allowed by Carrasco in 22 innings, and the right-hander was six outs from his 12th win before Carlos Beltran turned on one of his fastballs in the eighth to tie it 2-2.Carrasco finished with a no-decision despite his third straight powerful outing. The right-hander has allowed only three runs and seven hits in his past 26 innings.He got a spectacular defensive play from Urshela at third base in the fourth.Gardner hit a ball down the line that Urshela stopped with a back-hand near the bag. In one motion, Urshela leaped and made a strong throw from foul territory across the diamond — a la Derek Jeter — to nip Gardner.“That kind of looked like that Brooks Robinson game way back,” Francona said, referring to the Hall of Fame third baseman’s performance in the 1970 World Series. “That was a heck of a play. Especially with Brett Gardner running. That was some kind of play.(TOM WITHERS, AP Sports Writer)
PHILADELPHIA — Bartolo Colon isn’t too old to try new things.The big right-hander tossed five-hit ball and struck out eight in seven sharp innings, Michael Cuddyer hit a long homer and the NL East-leading New York Mets beat the Philadelphia Phillies 9-4 on Aug. 26.Colon (11-11) bounced back from a rough outing in Colorado, helping the Mets improve to 18-6 since July 31. They took a 6-1/2 gam lead over second-place Washington, which lost 6-5 to San Diego.“This is the most I threw breaking balls in my entire career,” Colon said through an interpreter.The 42-year-old began using his change-up more when pitching coach Dan Warthen suggested it after the Phillies got three hits in the first inning.“I salute him. He did a great job,” Mets Manager Terry Collins said. “We needed a long game and he gave it to us.”Cuddyer had an RBI double in the first inning off Jerad Eickhoff (1-1) and hit a two-run shot into the second deck in left field off Hector Neris in the eighth.The Mets have dominated the Phillies, winning eight straight, 11-of-12 this season and 23 of the last 28 meetings. They will go for a four-game sweep Aug. 27 with plenty of visiting fans chanting “Let’s Go Mets!” in Philadelphia’s cozy ballpark.“If you want to make the playoffs, you have to beat the teams you should,” Mets catcher Anthony Recker said.After the teams tied an NL record by combining for 11 home runs on Monday, they connected for three on Tuesday and only one on Wednesday.Eickhoff, acquired in the trade that sent ace left-hander Cole Hamels to Texas, was impressive in his major league debut Aug. 21 at Miami.He earned the win by pitching six scoreless innings. But the Mets jumped on him for three runs in the first.Cuddyer doubled in a run and scored on Michael Conforto’s single to make it 3-0.Eickhoff retired 16 straight hitters before Conforto hit a two-out double in the sixth. Juan Uribe drove him in with a single for a 4-0 lead.“I had a little trouble getting settled,” Eickhoff said.The Phillies scored seven runs off Jacob deGrom and five runs off Noah Syndergaard in the first two games of the series, but did nothing against Colon, who entered with a 4.90 ERA.They rallied against the bullpen in the eighth. Andres Blanco had an RBI groundout against Eric O’Flaherty and Cameron Rupp hit a two-run double off Carlos Torres. Pinch-hitter Jeff Francoeur had an RBI single off Tyler Clippard, but the righty struck out Darnell Sweeney to leave two runners on. Clippard got the final four outs for his 19th save and second with the Mets.Yoenis Cespedes had an RBI triple in a three-run ninth for New York.“You talk about hitting being contagious, you stop putting pressure on yourself,” Cuddyer said. “Because we have confidence in the guys around us, we’ve had success.”(ROB MAADDI, AP Sports Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shares
LONDON (AP) — Giorgio Chiellini roared in delight as captain Gianluigi Buffon grabbed him by the neck.It was a fiery show of appreciation from the goalkeeper to the colossus at the heart of the Juventus defense on an emotional night at Wembley Stadium.Chiellini hadn’t scored against Tottenham but made the last-ditch intervention required — clearing Son Heung-min’s cross — as the clock wound down at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday. It protected a 2-1 victory, secured by Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala scoring twice in three minutes, to send Juventus through to the Champions League quarterfinals.“We suffered,” Chiellini said after the 4-3 aggregate win. “It was very difficult. But we maintained the calm.”On a night when it was so difficult for Chiellini and his teammates to remain composed when Italian football is still shaken, still mourning Fiorentina captain Davide Astori.Tears rolled down Chiellini’s face amid the celebrations as he paid tribute to his 31-year-old occasional Italy teammate, who was found dead in his room before a Serie A match on Sunday.“We dedicate it to him, not only this match but every mind on this day,” Chiellini said. “I cried many times. He was a fantastic player. … We would like to continue with his smile in our hearts.”Juventus’ Alex Sandro performs an acrobatic kick during the Champions League, round of 16, second-leg soccer match between Juventus and Tottenham Hotspur, at the Wembley Stadium in London, Wednesday, March 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)The rugged image of Astori appeared before kickoff on big screens as Wembley fell silent to remember the defender.“It was very difficult during the match,” Chiellini said, “because we had to think of the game and the outcome and it’s not easy.”And however raw the grief, football does eventually resume.Juventus displayed the resolve missing in the first leg against Tottenham, evidence of the doggedness that has taken the Italian champions to two Champions League finals in the last three seasons.While Juventus collapsed in Turin to draw 2-2, it was Tottenham’s turn on home soil to throw away a winning position on become the first English team to be eliminated this season.Chelsea and Manchester United will complete their second legs next week, but two Premier League clubs are already through. A day after Liverpool eliminated Porto, Manchester City advanced Wednesday with a 5-2 victory over Basel despite losing 2-1 at the Etihad Stadium.Unlike City, Spurs lacked a comfortable lead to be so relaxed. But they had chances to build one early in the second leg.Harry Kane broke past Chiellini and rounded Buffon only to hit the side netting, while Son skewed a shot wide of the post before finding the breakthrough in the 39th minute.Juventus’ Gonzalo Higuain scores his side first goal during the Champions League, round of 16, second-leg soccer match between Juventus and Tottenham Hotspur, at the Wembley Stadium in London, Wednesday, March 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)Christian Eriksen slipped the ball through to Dele Alli but Andrea Barzagli intervened with a sliding tackle. The ball reached Kieran Trippier on the right and a cross was whipped in for Son, whose scuffed shot found its way into the net.When Tottenham rues its second-half capitulation, it should remember how fortunate it was to avoid losing a player and conceding a penalty in the 17th minute when Douglas Costa was tripped by Jan Vertonghen.Juventus was not going to go down without a fight. Chiellini was going to make sure of that — the 33-year-old defender charged into Alli to cut out his run after the break, earning a booking.So much of this last-16 match-up hinged on brief passages of play. For Juventus that came around the hour mark.First came the substitution and a tactical switch from 3-5-2 to 4-3-3 by Massimiliano AllegriKwadwo Asamoah came on for Blaise Matuidi, while Stephan Lichtsteiner replaced Medhi Benatia. And it was Lichtsteiner’s cross that Sami Khedira headed on to Higuain at the far post to reduce the deficit in the 64th minute.Before Tottenham could regroup it was trailing, with Higuain the creator. Three Tottenham players were held off by Higuain before he released a pass for Dybala to run onto and lift the ball over goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.Juventus’ Paulo Dybala, right, celebrates with his teammate Gonzalo Higuain after scoring his side second goal during the Champions League, round of 16, second-leg soccer match between Juventus and Tottenham Hotspur, at the Wembley Stadium in London, Wednesday, March 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)“I think we conceded three chances and they scored twice,” Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino said. “I am disappointed because we missed a lot of chances and because the team deserved more.”From a position of strength, this was a capitulation stemming from a loss of concentration and composure by Tottenham. As Chiellini alluded to, it was clear which team has won the last six domestic titles and which has gone 57 years without a championship success.“It’s the history of Tottenham,” Chiellini said. “They always create many chances to score … but at the end they miss something.”There was one chance to force the game into extra time in the 90th. Kane’s header hit the post and the ball crept across Gianluigi Buffon’s goal line before being hooked clear by Andrea Barzagli.It was agonizing for Tottenham, which beat Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in the group stage. There will be no third European Cup quarterfinal in its history.While Juventus advances and challenges for another Serie A title, Tottenham tries to hold on to its top-four position in the Premier League to secure its return to the competition next season.—AP-SOC-Tottenham-JuventusMar 08, 2018 3:03AM (GMT 01:03) – 884 wordsBy ROB HARRIS , AP Global Soccer WriterEds: Updates throughout with details, quotes. With AP Photos.Tottenham’s Son Heung-min, left, celebrates after scoring the opening goal with his teammate Kieran Trippier, during the Champions League, round of 16, second-leg soccer match between Juventus and Tottenham Hotspur, at the Wembley Stadium in London, Wednesday, March 7, 2018. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)TweetPinShare0 Shares
LONDON — Donny van de Beek gave youthful Ajax a 1-0 win over Tottenham in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal on Tuesday, edging the Dutch side toward a first European Cup final in 23 years.A Tottenham side depleted by injuries and suspension gifted the visitors too much space to string together slick passes early on, and the 22-year-old Van de Beek ghosted into the penalty area to receive a throughball from Hakim Ziyech before knocking a shot past goalkeeper Hugo Lloris in the 15th minute.Overwhelmed in the first half, Tottenham was more assertive after the break against the 1995 champions but lacked the attacking end product to equalize with Harry Kane injured and Son Heung-min suspended.Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen walks off the pitch with a head injury during the Champions League semifinal first leg soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Ajax at the Tottenham Hotspur stadium in London, Tuesday, April 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)The hosts, contesting their first European Cup semifinal in 57 years, also had to contend with the loss of defender Jan Vertonghen in the first half with an injury that threw a fresh spotlight on soccer’s handling of suspected concussions.Vertonghen challenged for a header in the Ajax area but slammed his face into the back of teammate Toby Alderweireld’s head, leaving him with blood pouring from a cut on his nose in the 32nd minute. Vertonghen received treatment on the field and went to change his bloodied white jersey.Referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz was pointing at his head as he spoke to Vertonghen, before allowing him to return to action in the 38th minute.Vertonghen lasted only 40 seconds before going across to the sideline, leaning over and struggling to stand. Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino had to grab Vertonghen to stop him from keeling over before the Belgian was helped down the tunnel by two medical officials.Vertonghen could miss the trip to Amsterdam to face his former club next Wednesday.Barcelona hosts Liverpool in the other semifinal Wednesday.By: Rob Harris, AP Global Soccer WriterTweetPinShare0 Shares
WASHINGTON (AP) — Greek – Australian Nick Kyrgios dealt with back, knee and forearm issues during the Citi Open. Between doubles and singles, he played every day, all week. He saved a match point. He beat a pair of top-10 opponents, the men seeded No. 1 and No. 3 at the hard-court tournament.In the end, he won the title, the sixth of his enigmatic career, one filled with big victories against the Big Three, yes, but also fines and controversy and a probationary period and so many ups and downs for a guy who is still just 24.And then, after beating Daniil Medvedev 7-6 (6), 7-6 (4) in Sunday’s final of a hard-court tournament that serves as a tuneup for the U.S. Open, Kyrgios talked about how he’s a changed man.“I just wanted to clean myself up and have healthier habits,” Kyrgios said, using his fingers to signal quotation marks around “clean.”“It’s only the beginning,” he added, “and it showed this week by winning this tournament.”Nick Kyrgios, of Australia, falls to the court as he reacts after defeating Daniil Medvedev, of Russia, in a final match at the Citi Open tennis tournament, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)He spoke over and over about how proud he was — not so much about the way he played tennis to earn a trophy, but the way he lived his life when he wasn’t playing.“I had the same routine every day. And I just felt — I felt actually like a traditional tennis player this week,” said Kyrgios, who most certainly is not the sort who generally would be described that way.Whether or not that will become a regular occurrence for the Australian remains to be seen, of course.He said so himself.“I feel like I’ve made major strides,” Kyrgios said. “I’m just going to take it one day at a time and hopefully I can continue on this new path.”He wouldn’t offer any specifics about the ways in which he handled himself differently during his time in the nation’s capital.This was a guy, though, who joked about hanging out at a local pub during Wimbledon last month — including the night before his much-hyped match against Rafael Nadal, which turned out to be a loss.Nick Kyrgios, of Australia, follows through on a serve to Daniil Medvedev, of Russia, during a final match at the Citi Open tennis tournament, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)“I just had a lot of unhealthy habits,” Kyrgios said, “and it was starting to show on the tennis court. … It wasn’t healthy. So I just needed to change a lot of things.”Asked at his news conference before 9 p.m. on Sunday night how he would celebrate his championship, Kyrgios shrugged, said he probably wouldn’t because it was “really late” and so he would head to his hotel and get ready to fly to Montreal on Monday for his next tournament.“Just looking back at some of the places I’ve been in the last six months, it’s crazy to think how much I’ve turned it around,” Kyrgios said. “I’ve just been working really hard on and off the court to try and be better as a person and as a tennis player.”He came into the Citi Open ranked 52nd — and left with his ranking back inside the top 30 for the first time in nearly a year.For someone who has been as high as No. 13, and someone who insists he doesn’t care about rankings, that might not sound like a big deal.But in this case, with the year’s last Grand Slam tournament beginning in Flushing Meadows in three weeks, it means Kyrgios would be one of the 32 seeded men, allowing him to avoid meeting another seeded player until no sooner than the third round.Also makes it less likely he’d get a first-week matchup at the U.S. Open against a Nadal or a Roger Federer or a Novak Djokovic.Nick Kyrgios, of Australia, reacts after defeating Daniil Medvedev, of Russia, in a final match at the Citi Open tennis tournament, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)Not that Kyrgios is intimidated by that sort of matchup. He’s beaten all of them, and says frequently he knows he can beat anyone out there on a good day.The thing with Kyrgios is that he does not always seem to be at his best, for one reason or another.Even Medvedev referenced that reputation after seeing Kyrgios rebound from back spasms that had him laying on the court for a massage during a medical timeout after Sunday’s opening set.“He was determined and it seemed like he wants to win,” said Medvedev, who is ranked No. 10 and was seeded third, two spots behind the player Kyrgios eliminated in the semifinals, Stefanos Tsitsipas, after facing a match point. “And that’s what we don’t see all the time.”—By HOWARD FENDRICH AP Tennis WriterA spectator in the stands gives Nick Kyrgios, bottom right, of Australia, a thumbs-up after he hugged her following his defeat of Daniil Medvedev, of Russia, in a final match at the Citi Open tennis tournament, Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)TweetPinShare0 Shares