Hong Kong: World Champion P V Sindhu made a positive start to her campaign but Saina Nehwal and Sameer Verma were ousted from the Hong Kong Open after suffering contrasting defeats in the opening round of the USD 400,000 event in Hong Kong on Wednesday. Sixth seed Sindhu, who had faltered in the opening round in a couple of recent tournaments, took 36 minutes to see off world no 19 Kim Ga Eun of Korea 21-15 21-16 to progress to the second round. The Olympic silver medallist will face Thailand’s Busanan Ongbamrungphan next. However, eighth seed Saina, who claimed the Indonesia Masters in January this year, suffered her fifth first-round loss in the last six tournaments, going down 13-21 20-22 to China’s Cai Yan Yan for the second successive time. She had lost to Cai at China Open last week.World no.16 Sameer fought for 54 minutes before going to Wang Tzu Wei of Chinese Taipei 11-21 21-13 8-21 in the opening match. It was his third successive loss in the opening round. Saina and Sameer are both scheduled to play Gwangju Korea Masters Super 300 tournament next week. World No 6 Sindhu moved to a 8-4 lead early on but Kim managed to turn the tables, holding a 11-10 advantage at the breather. The Indian then reeled off six points at 13-13 to march ahead and seal the opening game. The second game was no different as Sindhu again broke off at 5-5, grabbing seven points on the trot to move to a massive 12-5 lead.The Indian kept moving ahead and eventually shut the door comfortably on her opponent. Earlier, Saina lacked the wherewithal to put up a fight against Cai in the opening game and fell behind from the very start. She couldn’t catch up with the Chinese, who moved to a comfortable 11-4 lead at the break and kept surging ahead to win the first game. In the second game, Saina was 3-0 up initially but Cai reeled off seven straight points at 2-4 to jump to a 9-4 advantage. The Indian narrowed the gap but Cai was ahead 11-9 at the breather. After the interval, the Chinese jumped to a 17-11 advantage.Also Read | PV Sindhu Eyes Reversal Of Fortunes In Danish Open Badminton TournamentHowever, Saina managed to fight back and grab a game point at 20-19 but the Chinese once again managed to nose ahead. Sameer, on the other hand, managed to take one game away from the world no.26 Wang after meekly surrendering the opening game. Wang was 7-4 up and then surged to 15-5 in a jiffy to eventually close the opening game. In the second game, Wang led 3-0 early on but this time Sameer put up a fierce fight to open up a slender 11-10 lead, which he capitalised to roar back into the contest. However, Sameer was completely blown away by Wang in the decider. The Taiwanese shuttler zoomed to an 8-0 lead and then grabbed a 15-2 advantage, a gap which the Indian failed to bridge in the end. For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.
Redshirt senior defensive end Jabari Ruffin has been suspended indefinitely for a student conduct issue, head coach Clay Helton announced on Sunday.On Monday, his name was taken off USC’s football roster on its website. Ruffin is the third football player to be removed from the team this season after Osa Masina and Don Hill were disciplined in September for their alleged participation in a sexual assault incident.Helton told the media on Sunday that Ruffin’s status was ambivalent. “I don’t have a crystal ball on when or if he could return,” he said.A backup linebacker, Ruffin has made one career start in four seasons at USC. He has appeared in six games this season — including in Saturday’s win at Arizona — and recorded two tackles. He primarily played on special teams and on defense backed up junior Uchenna Nwosu at linebacker. On the depth chart, junior Olajuwon Tucker will take the place of Ruffin. Ruffin was suspended for the first half of the Utah State game earlier this season after he stomped on an opponent’s groin in the season opener against Alabama. He also had to write a letter of apology.In a statement after the September incident, Helton said there would be “zero tolerance” for Ruffin in the future. “Jabari is a good kid who made a poor emotional decision,” Helton said at the time. “I am sorry as the head coach, [and] he is also. I know that it will not happen again.”
The Ghana National Amputee Football team, the Black Challenge, gallantly lost 1-2 to their Russian counterparts at the Amputee Football World Cup in the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad.The chilling weather had an effect on the Black Challenge who had to delve deep into their reserves to pull one goal back in the second half after a beautifully coordinated move initiated between Kofi Asare and Cephas Anum and perfectly finished by Collins Gyamfi.The two first half goals by the Russians came at a time the rains had set in, the second time in the Ghanaians three matches played so far but the shivering Ghanaians had no option than to keep their opponents at bay to avoid conceding more goals.In the second half, the Black Challenge changed the trend of the game with incisive moves into the half and the dee (penalty box) of the Russia who were eager to please their fans with tailor-measured passes and entertaining football.The match became a ding-dong affair as both sides tested their opposing goal keepers with some long-range shots matched by equally beautiful saves from the safe hands.The Russian keeper saved the day for his team with great saves that denied Collins Gyamfi, Africa’s Best scorer of the chance to bang in more goals; however, the goal poacher managed to increase his personal tally to three in three matches with the goal that reduced the deficit. Ghana still remain in second position on the league Group A table with six points behind Russia who have the maximum nine points from three matches. Ghana would have to win at least one match in the next game to keep the dream of winning gold alive.In another match, Africa’s other representative Liberia lost 2-8 to defending champions Uzbekistan, recording no point in three matches played in Group B.
Some 8,000 tickets supposedly issued to a number of the supporters unions for the recent 2014 World Cup qualifier between Ghana and the Sudan in Kumasi cannot be accounted for, Graphic Sports has gathered.As a result, pressure is mounting on officials of the National Sports Authority (NSA) to cough out GH¢40,000 being the net value of the tickets, each of which had a face value of GH¢5.The Black Stars beat their Sudanese counterparts 4-0 at the Baba Yara Stadium in March, but accounting for those 8,000 tickets has triggered a disquiet within the corridors of the Sports Authority, Graphic Sports understands.The Authority has plunged into this quagmire following claims that the ‘Green Area’ at the stadium which contained about 8,000 spectators was given out to the supporter unions free of charge. Yet there are no documents to support that claim, sources have hinted Graphic Sports.At least, officials of the Die Hard Supporters Union have told Graphic Sports that they entered the stadium free of charge and without tickets, too. But the whereabouts of those tickets remain a mystery that auditors are struggling to unravel, the sources said.The officials of the Die Hard Supporters Union, indeed, stated in interviews with Graphic Sports that they did not receive any ticket for the match but instead the NSA granted over 200 members of the group free entry using a designated gate. “We were not given tickets, but rather Die Hard Supporters, numbering over 200, were allowed to enter the stadium free by the National Sports Authority. In the previous Black Stars match we were offered tickets but we turned them down because we didin’t like the seats alloted for us, so we bought our own ticket,” said Abraham Nkansah, President of Die Hard Supporters Union.Information pieced together by the Graphic Sports indicate that the development had pressed the panic button as officials of the Sports Authority are still struggling to reconcile the figures with the number of tickets issued out.Though it has been over two months since the game was played, the source stated that they are unable to produce a report on the match as directed by the Ministry.When this paper contacted Saka Acquaye, Ashanti Regional Sports Development Officer on the issue, he said he could not speak on the matter and deferred it to another officer who was unable to provide any reasonable answer.The acting Director General of the NSA, Ms Alice Attipoe, who said she was on her way out of town when Graphic Sports contacted her yesterday said she was unaware of the issue and could discuss the matter when she returned.