New Indian boss mulls bid for 2032 Olympics

Olympic rings (AFP)
Updated 15 December 2017
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New Indian boss mulls bid for 2032 Olympics

NEW DELHI: India’s new Olympics chief Narinder Batra has vowed to make bids to stage the 2032 Olympics, 2030 Asian Games or 2026 Commonwealth Games, saying the country must “think big.”
Batra, who is also the International Hockey Federation (FIH) president, said after winning the Indian Olympic Association vote late Thursday that an approach would be made to the Indian government for financial backing.
“Once I settle down, the IOA will take a proposal to the government to host the 2032 Olympics, 2030 Asiad and 2026 CWG. We should think big but hosting these Games depends on the government as they will sanction the funds,” he said.
“I have always dreamed big and this is my personal view that India should host these big events.”
When New Delhi staged the 2010 Commonwealth Games, they were marked by construction delays, failing infrastructure and accusations of financial mismanagement.
But India is now one of the world’s fastest growing major economies, and international sporting chiefs say it must be a contender to hold major events.
India’s sporting relations with arch-rival neighbor Pakistan could prove a sticking point, however.
Batra said he opposed any bilateral contests against Pakistan. The two dispute Kashmir territory, while India accuses Pakistan of supporting “terrorism.”
“As far as multilateral events organized by the international federations are concerned, we have to play Pakistan. But I think it is not possible to play them in bilateral events unless relations between the two countries are improved.
“Moreover their behavior at the border will have to improve. Everybody in India is an Indian first.”
As India’s hockey chief, Batra suspended matches against Pakistan after a 2014 Champions Trophy semifinal which Pakistan won. India accused the Pakistani players of making obscene gestures to the Indian crowd.
Batra overwhelmingly won the contest for the IOA presidency, but a Delhi court is still to review the vote.


Pakistan beat Afghanistan in last over finish

Bangladesh's Mahmudullah, right, bats during the one day international cricket match of Asia Cup between Bangladesh and Afghanistan in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018. (AP)
Updated 22 September 2018
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Pakistan beat Afghanistan in last over finish

  • Hashmatullah Shahidi missed out on a maiden hundred by a mere three runs but still steered Afghanistan to a challenging 257-6

DUBAI: Experienced batsman Shoaib Malik hit a six and a boundary to pull off a sensational last over three wicket win for Pakistan against a spirited Afghanistan in the Asia Cup in Abu Dhabi on Friday.
Malik pulled the second ball of the final over by paceman Aftab Alam over the deep square leg boundary and then whacked the next to deep fine leg for a boundary as Pakistan pulled off a nerve-wracking win in 49.3 overs at Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
Pakistan, cashing a stiff 258-run target, were home and dry to start the Super Four Stage with a much needed win and now face arch rivals India in Dubai on Sunday.
Hashmatullah Shahidi missed out on a maiden hundred by a mere three runs but still steered Afghanistan to a challenging 257-6.
Pakistan were off to a disastrous start when opener Fakhar Zaman was trapped leg-before off the sixth ball of the innings by spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman for nought.
Imam-ul-Haq scored a 104-ball 80 with five boundaries and a six while Babar Azam knocked an attractive 94-ball 66 with four boundaries and a six during their innings repairing the 154-run stand for the second wicket.
But both fell within the space of four runs as spinner Rashid Khan (3-46) brought Afghanistan back in the game with the asking rate getting stiffer, as Pakistan needed 42 off the final five overs.
Despite losing skipper Sarfraz Ahmed (eight), Asif Ali (seven) and Mohammad Nawaz (ten), Malik kept his cool to sop Afghanistan from posting their third straight win after beating Sri Lanka and Bangladesh in the first round.
Earlier, Shahidi hit three consecutive boundaries in the final over off Usman Shinwari, but failed to get to three figures off the last delivery after Afghanistan won the toss and batted.
Shahidi finished with a brilliantly-paced 118-ball 97 not out, and added 94 for the fourth wicket with his skipper Asghar Afghan, who smashed five sixes and two fours in his 56-ball 67.
But it was Shahidi who held one end against Pakistan’s bowling in an innings which featured seven boundaries after left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz (3-57) had put the brakes on Afghanistan’s early progress.
Shahidi had added 63 for the third wicket with Rahmat Shah who scored a measured 36.
The total is an improvement by Afghanistan after scoring 249 and 255 in their previous two wins against Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
Pakistani fielders dropped four catches — three off debutant paceman Shaheen Shah Afridi who finished with 2-38.
India beat Bangladesh by seven wickets in Dubai and now meet Pakistan on Sunday, also in Dubai. Afghanistan and Bangladesh meet in Abu Dhabi on the same day.
Top two teams from the Super Four Stages will play the final in Dubai on September 28.