S. Chikkarangappa defended his title in style at the CG Open Golf 2014, producing a final round of four-under-66 at the Bombay Presidency Golf Club course on Saturday. The Bengaluru golfer totalled 17-under-263 in the PGTI Super Series event and also topped the Rolex Rankings.
Om Prakash Chouhan bettered the course record with 10-under-60 in the fourth round, and was rewarded with the second spot carding 16-under-264.
Overnight leader C. Muniyappa of Bengaluru returned a card of 15-under-265 for third place.
Chikkarangappa (67-66-64-66) started with pars on the first three holes, birdied the fourth, fifth and seventh.
Muniyappa bogeyed the 11th, as the former struck form to manage birdies on 16th and 18th for the title.
Final scores (after fourth round):
263: S. Chikkarangappa; 264: Om Prakash Chouhan; 265: C. Muniyappa; 266: Sanjay Kumar, 267: Shamim Khan and Mukesh Kumar; 268: Abhijit Singh Chadha; 271: Kapil Kumar; 272: Anura Rohana; 273: Md Zamal Hossain Mollah.
Rolex rankings (after CG Open): 1. S. Chikkarangappa, 2. Om Prakash Chouhan (Mhow), 3. Shankar Das (Kolkata), 4. Rashid Khan (Delhi), 5. Anura Rohana (Sri Lanka), 6. Sanjay Kumar (Lucknow), 7. Mukesh Kumar (Mhow), 8. C. Muniyappa (Bengaluru), 9. K Prabhagaran (Sri Lanka), 10. Shubankar Sharma
source: http://www.thehindu.com / The Hindu / Home> Sport> Other Sports / Mumbai – December 07th, 2014
December 23rd, 2014Sports
Bengaluru (North) and Kodagu clinched the titles in the State-level Hockey Tournament for PU Colleges 2014-15 in boys and girls section repsectively.
The tournament was jointly conducted by the Dept. of PU Education, Mysuru and Seshadripuram PU College, Mysuru at University Grounds yesterday.
In the PU boys section, a match winning field goal by centre-forward S. Shashank (59th min) helped Bengaluru North to beat Kodagu 1-0 in the final.
In the PU girls section, Kodagu scored a big 6-2 win over Mysuru in the final. A hat-trick by Kaveramma (21st, 46th & 60th mins), a brace by Nisha (11th & 36th mins) and a goal by Hindushree (24th min) helped Kodagu win by a big margin. Kavyashree (35th min) and Avinashree (38th min) were the goal scorers for Mysuru.
The results: Boys: Bengaluru (North) 1 (Shashank – 56th min) bt Kodagu 0.
Girls: Kodagu 6 (Kaveramma- 24th,46th,60th min, Nisha-11th & 36th mins and Hindushree-24th min) bt Mysuru 2 ( Kavyashree-35, Avinashree 38th min).
source: http://www.starofmysore.com / Star of Mysore / Home> Sports News / Wednesday – December 17th, 2014
December 21st, 2014Arts, Culture & Entertainment, Famous Personalities of Kodagu / Coorg, Historical Links / Pre-Independence, Sports
Mercara Downs Golf Club, one of India’s oldest, turns 100
Caddies have it hard at Mercara Downs Golf Club. Spread over 102 acres, its course has water hazards and hillocks and is ringed by woods. Golfers flock here on weekends. Some are on the course at the crack of dawn.
For Ganesh Mahendra, a planter from Coorg, a round of golf in the afternoon is absolutely sacred. “It is a great way to unwind after a long day in the plantation,” says the 37-year-old who cultivates black pepper, cardamom and coffee on his 120-acre estate at Suntikoppa.
Located in Coorg, the Scotland of India, Mercara Downs is shrouded in mist on most winter evenings. A veil of nostalgia, too, hangs over the place; it is gearing up for its centennial celebrations.
At a hillock near the club house, we meet I.K. Anil, 63, captain of the club. “During the colonial period, only the British could play golf,” he says. “Indians were not allowed, as the club was run by the British and it was their choice who they should have. Later on, a few Indians were taken to the club and were allowed to play. But, they were just less than 10 per cent.” There used to be inter-club tournaments with the Belur Golf Club and the Tata Coffee Golf Club. “We have had expats coming here and saying ‘My grandfather used to play golf here’,” he says.
Anil shows us a tree which used to have a thatched hut under it, where the Brits would party. “We did not have a club house then,” he says, adjusting his hat. Mercara Downs was just nine holes on 30 acres during the British period. “It was all browns then. Now, we have lovely greens,” says Anil. And, 18 holes.
Keeping the course green is a challenge. “It has to be irrigated inch to inch, which is a big constraint in cities,” Anil says. “Luckily, we are blessed with plenty of water. Once the northeast monsoon stops, we start irrigating.”
Harish Appanna finds the greens a real treat to the eyes. He comes to the course thrice a week. His estate is in Chettalli, 20km from Mercara. A hockey player, Appanna took to golf easily. “I took coaching for a week,” he says. “Then I would come here and practise every day. Now, I love golf more than hockey.” The 57-year-old is secretary of Mercara Downs.
Roy Chengappa, 59, loves hanging out on the course with friends. “It helps me connect with nature,” says Chengappa. He shows us a lapwing perched on the course: “These birds lay eggs among pebbles, to keep them safe from predators like foxes.” The lapwing appears on the club logo, too.
A coffee planter, Chengappa never used to play golf earlier. “One day, I just came here and hit the ball. It felt great. Then I became a member,” he says. Now, he plays once a week. “It is an intelligent game,” he says. “You have to hit a stationary ball. It involves a lot of science, especially physics and mechanics, as well as physical and mental abilities.”
Golf is for gentlemen, says Anil who has been playing for the last 35 years. “It is the toughest to play, but the easiest to cheat,” he says. “If the ball goes into a depression, one can take it out without anyone seeing it. We are trying to inculcate certain values in youngsters.”
Mercara Downs will soon be a hot destination for golfers from abroad. “We have a helipad here. A few days from now, Japanese tourists will come here looking at business opportunities,” says Anil. “It is easy to get outstation golfers. In the US they do not have many public golf courses. In Japan, one has to wait years for a round of golf, leave alone membership.”
Outstation golfers can buy a lifetime membership in Mercara Downs for Rs3.5 lakh. For local players it is Rs1.3 lakh, as the club wants to have more regulars around.
Mercara Downs has helped a lot of aspiring golfers take up the game. Two years ago, Mahendra had a hole-in-one. “My first shot on the 11th hole went in phadaak,” recalls Mahendra. The odds of an average golfer hitting a hole-in-one are 12,000:1. He was thrilled and threw a party; the bill came to Rs22,000. The next time he was playing, he hit a shot which rolled close to the hole. “I prayed, ‘God, let this not get in’. I was worried about losing money again!” says Mahendra, who played in the Valentine Team Amateur Golf Challenge in Bangkok.
Ace golfer Trishul Chinnappa, 21, says Mercara Downs is an “out-of-the-world place”. “The sand traps make the course more challenging,” he says. “Similarly, the elevation has an effect on the way you play. You need to use a lot of skill and get creative while playing in Mercara Downs.”
Golf has become quite popular in Coorg. Other courses are at the Tata Coffee Golf Club at Pollibetta and the Coorg Golf Links at Bittangala. Chinnappa was five when he took up the game. “Back then I used to be the only kid in Coorg playing golf,” he says. “But, today I see a lot of youngsters taking up the game. It is indeed good for the sport in our community.”
Chinnappa and other distinguished sportspersons from Coorg district will be honoured at the Mercara Downs centenary celebrations on December 12 and 13. The evenings of glitz and glamour will have live music performances and a fashion show by designer Prasad Bidapa.
source: http://www.week.manoramaonline.com / The Week / Home> Sports / by Mini P. Thomas / Monday – December 08th, 2014
Amardip Sinh Malik of Greater Noida clinched his maiden title at the Rs. 40 lakh PGTI Noida Masters after a playoff win against Md Zamal Hossain Mollah of Bangladesh at the Noida Golf Course. Chikkarangappa S of Bangalore won the Super Series title to earn a bonus prize of Rs. 30 lakh after ending top of the table at the seventh and final Super Series event of 2014.
Amardip Sinh Malik (70-67-70-78) and Md Zamal Hossain Mollah (72-69-73-71) ended the regulation 72 holes with matching totals of three-under-285 and thus proceeded for the playoff on the 18th hole. Malik sealed it with a par on the first playoff hole even as Zamal dropped a bogey. While Malik was two on the green and two-putted for par, Zamal found the green in four shots after landing it in the bunker.
The 29-year-old Amardip Sinh Malik, the overnight leader by four shots, seemed to be losing grip of the match as he made four bogeys and a double-bogey on the first 14 holes to be six-over for the day. He then made two birdies and two bogeys on the last four holes to end the day with a six-over-78. Malik was a picture of grit and determination in the playoff as he wrapped it up with a five-feet par putt.
Amardip, who climbed from 49th place to 23rd place in the Rolex Rankings after his win on Friday, said, “I’m delighted to post my first win. I’ve come close to winning on quite a few occasions in the past. But it was great to finally cross the line. I had a forgettable fourth round as I missed a lot of short putts and found myself in tough situations. However, I hung in there with two birdies towards the end. My perseverance paid off in the playoff. This win has boosted my confidence for the last two events of the season.”
Md Zamal Hossain Mollah mixed three birdies with two bogeys in his final round of one-under-71 before losing out in the playoff.
Noida’s Vikrant Chopra shot a final round of even-par-72 to finish third at two-under-286.
Chikkarangappa became the Super Series champion after finishing tied fourth at one-under-287. He fired a 71 in the final round on Friday. Chikka, a winner of two Super Series events in 2014, ended on top of the Super Series Points Table with a total of 3837.61 to earn the bonus prize of Rs. 30 lakh. The 21-year-old also continues to lead the Rolex Rankings with earnings of Rs. 36,89,711.
Kapil Kumar of Delhi and Mukesh Kumar of Mhow shared fourth place with Chikkarangappa.
Delhi’s Rashid Khan, who finished tied 12th at Noida at three-over-291, claimed second place with 3394 points.
Amardip Sinh Malik finished third in the Super Series with 2252.19 points.
source: http://www.indiansportsnews.com / Indian Sports News / Home> Golf / Monday – December 15th, 2014
December 21st, 2014Sports
The Karnataka State Cricket Association will build an indoor cricket academy in Madikeri, Kodagu district. This was revealed to TOI by KSCA secretary Brijesh Patel during his visit to the district on Saturday.
“The KSCA is interested in encouraging talent in rural areas. The estimated budget for the project is likely to be between Rs 15-20 crore. We are also on the lookout for 15 to 20 acres of land for the academy. We have discussed the idea with the deputy commissioner and he has promised to help us. The KSCA will take the land on lease or even to purchase if it is available at a nominal price,” Patel added.
According to Patel, the academy will have an indoor facility to ensure that training goes on during monsoon. “Aspirants up to the age of 23 are eligible for coaching and can use the dormitory facilities,” Patel said.
KSCA have grounds at Hubballi, Belagavi, Raichur, Shivamogga, Mysuru and Mangaluru.
source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Sports / by Sunil Subbaiah / December 14th, 2014
December 16th, 2014Sports
The centenary celebrations of Mercara Downs Golf Club (MDGC) will be held on Dec. 12 & 13. The club is also organising ‘MDGC Centenary Cup’ Golf Tournament sponsored by Cycle Pure Agarbathies.
Addressing the press persons, MDGC Captain I.K. Anil said that around 200 golfers from South India would be participating in the tournament. Along with the Centenary Cup Golf Tournament, Stroke Play Championship for Sakamuri Open Cup and NR Group Rolling Trophy will be held and the winners will take away a total cash prize of Rs. Four lakh.
Along with Cycle Pure Agarbathies, Murugappa Groups, Muliya Jewellery, SLN Group, URS Cars, Tata Motors, Vivanta by Taj, Fort Mercara, Epson, Indian Overseas Bank and Travancore Coffee Company have sponsored the tournament. A part of the money generated through sponsorship will be donated to Opportunity School of Kodagu Vidyalaya.
Logo Unveiled: Cycle Pure Agarabathies Managing Partner Arjun Ranga unveiled the logo of the Centenary Cup Golf Tournament. Speaking on the occasion, he said that the company had been supporting golf since many years.
MDGC Secretary Harish Appanna, M.A. Ponnacha and Kumar Appacchu also were present on the occasion.
source: http://www.starofmysore.com / Star of Mysore / Home> Sports News / Wednesday – December 10th, 2014
Governor Vajubhai Vala congratulated the top athletes and coaches of Karnataka including Asiad gold medalists Ashwini Akkunji (athletics) and Sushmitha Pawar (kabaddi) on Wednesday for winning the Karnataka Olympic Association (KOA) awards 2014 and said more laurels could be won through the combined efforts of state government and KOA.
Addressing the gathering in Raj Bhavan, Vala said the state can be proud of its achievements in sports. “I’m happy to note that there are seven players in the Indian hockey team from Karnataka. Likewise, there are many others from the state who have done well at the international level,” the governor said after giving away KOA’s special awards to hockey players SV Sunil, Nikkin Thimmaiah, VR Raghunath, discus thrower Vikas Gowda, badminton player Ashwini Ponnappa, pistol shooter PN Prakash and other medal winners at the Incheon Asian Games.
The governor also recalled the Gujarat model of sports development which is now rated highly. “There is competition at the village, district and zonal level before they reach the state level and winners at all these levels are rewarded,” said Vala, who also served as the finance minister of Gujarat.
He also exhorted all youngsters to take up sports. “Today we see the absence of good character in many youngsters and that’s why sport is important as it helps in character building,” he said.
Chief minister Siddaramaiah stayed clear of committing anything more on the sports cess, despite being prodded by KOA president Govindaraj, but reaffirmed the government’s commitment to support sportspersons. “I’ve never said no whenever the sportspersons have come to me for help. We are improving the infrastructure in all the districts and that will help athletes from rural areas,” he said.
Ace badminton doubles player Ashwini Ponnappa was happy to receive the award in what was a big year for her. “It was a satisfying year as we have improved a lot winning medals in ABC, Uber Cup and Commonwealth Games. It is going to be another busy season from January with the World Championship in August,” Ashwini said.
Middle distance runner Ashwini was all smiles after collecting two awards. The lanky athlete said the awards are a big motivation to improve further. “This was a big surprise I was never expecting it,” she said.
The KOA also honoured several coaches including N Lingappa (athletics), DY Biradar (athletics), Manoharan G (boxing), Aslam Khan (football), Jude Felix (hockey) and Vasant Madhav (tennis). TOI’s principal photographer Syed Asif also received the honour.
Earlier, Govindaraj said the government has cleared the proposal for the construction of the Olympic Bhawan at the Sree Kanteerava stadium. “Karnataka will only be the second state after Andhra Pradesh to have their Olympic Bhawan,” he said.
source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Sports> More Sports / by Biju Babu Cyriac, TNN / November 28th, 2014
December 10th, 2014Sports
If form is anything to go by, Robin Uthappa has by far been the best Indian batsman this year. He changed the fortunes of the Gautam Gambhir-led Kolkata Knight Riders earlier this year where during an incredible run, the wicket-keeper batsman scored 11 consecutive 40 plus scores, which was a new world record in T20 cricket.
It was his red-hot form, which got him back into the reckoning for the Indian team, after six years.
But when he was included in the Indian squad for the three-match ODI series against Bangladesh earlier this year, it was because the main players had either been rested, or had opted out. The same happened against Sri Lanka, where Uthappa was included for the last two ODIs, as Shikhar Dhawan was rested. Despite scoring heap of runs, for reasons unknown, he wasn’t the first choice to open the innings for India in ODIs.
While Uthappa scored 69 runs against Bangladesh in three matches, including a half-century, he managed just 35 runs in two innings against Sri Lanka. Not to forget, in both the matches against the Lankans, Uthappa batted much lower down the order as the top slot was fixed for the likes for Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane. Also, in the 4th ODI against Sri Lanka, Uthappa made sure he gave most of the strike to Rohit, who went on to score a historic knock of 264 runs.
Ajinkya Rahane has been in sensational form for India while opening the innings, but both Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan haven’t tasted much success while batting overseas. Since the beginning of this year, while playing away, Rohit has played seven matches and has scored just 218 runs, 79 being his highest score. Dhawan on the other hand has accumulated 264 runs from nine innings, 97 not out being his best against New Zealand. While they have scored some big knocks playing in India, their consistency while playing abroad has cost India dearly.
On the other hand, Uthappa’s consistency is known to all. The argument could be that all of Uthappa’s runs have come in India. But how is he supposed to score runs overseas, when the selectors stick with the same players, again and again? And how long is he supposed to keep performing in all formats of the game, despite being regularly snubbed by selectors? He has improved his game, technique, temperament, fitness, what else does he need to do to deserve a place in the playing eleven as a first choice?
Even in domestic cricket, Uthappa showed his resurgence as a batsman hitting a century (120) against East Zone followed by scores of 80 and 30 against Central Zone.
Uthappa is no more the batsman he was when he came into the Indian team in 2006. Though his ability to hit seamers over midwicket after charging down the pitch looked quite Hayden-esque, he was dismissed on most of the occasions while attempting similar strokes. Like most of the youngsters, he too was keen to clobber every delivery out of the park. But once he went in exile, he has done everything possible to gain attention from the cricketing cognoscenti.
Over the years, we have seen the best cricket teams use different players for different formats. For example, England used Alex Hales as a T20 specialist for several years. In the bowling department, they used Jade Dernbach as a T20 bowler. During his initial years, David Warner was used as a T20 specialist by Australia and it was only after a few years that he became a regular in all formats of the game. While the Indian team isn’t known for such experiments, the sort of comeback Robin Uthappa has made, he can definitely be used as a limited-overs specialist.
It would be unfair if the selectors judge him on the basis of his knocks in the last two ODIs against the Lankans. They got to rate his overall performance this year, and he should be the frontrunner as an opener for the forthcoming Australian tour and the ICC World Cup.
source: http://www.zeenews.india.com / Z News / Home> News> Exclusive / by Suyash Srivastava / Thursday – November 20th, 2014
Quarter-miler MR Poovamma and cricketer Robin Uthappa walked away with the top awards at the Sports Writers Association of Bangalore’s (SWAB) annual award’s ceremony at the Karnataka State Billiards Association here on Sunday.
While Poovaama was recognised as the Sportsperson of the Year (female) for the second year in a row for her medal winning performances in the year, Uthappa was adjudged the best Sportsperson of the Year (male) for his feats in the IPL, Vijay Hazare Trophy and Ranji Trophy in the season gone by.
Both the award winners weren’t present due to prior commitments.
The Karnataka cricket team, which won three trophies in less than two months at the start of the year, was identified as the Team of the Year.
After winning the Ranji Trophy, the team defeated a Rest Of India side to corner glory in the Irani Cup before capturing the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
J Arunkumar and Mansur Ali Khan, the batting and bowling coaches respectively of the team, won the Coaches of the Year award.
Former Indian women’s hockey captain Elvera Britto was presented with the Lifetime Achievement award.
Gagan Narang, bronze medalist in 10-metre air rifle shooting event in the 2012 London Olympics, was the chief guest for the occasion.
Winners: Coaches of the year: J Arun Kumar and Mansur Ali Khan (Cricket); Junior sportsperson of the year (male): S Chikkarangappa (Golf); Junior sportsperson of the year (female): Aditi Ashok (Golf); Behind the scene award: Raghuprasad (Hockey); Featured Association (2012): Karnataka State Billiards Association; Featured Association (2013): Karnataka State Cricket Association; Featured Association (2014): Karnataka Volleyball Association; Sportsperson of the year (male): Robin Uthappa (Cricket); Sportsperson of the year (female): M R Poovamma (Athletics); Lifetime achievement award: Elvera Britto (Hockey); Team of the year award: Karnataka State Cricket Association (Cricket).
source: http://www.deccanherald.com / Deccan Herald / Home> Sports / by DHNS – Bengaluru, November 17th, 2014
For a Sania Mirza or Leander Paes, combining with a foreign partner is a part and parcel of the game. But the trend isn’t very popular in badminton.
Though it started as an experiment for doubles specialist Ashwini Ponnappa, the Karnataka shuttler is hopeful of her newly-formed partnership with Russian men’s player Vladmir Ivanov.
Playing with Ivanov will not only add another dimension to her perspective, but also help do better in women’s doubles with Jwala Gutta.
“With Ivanov, I will learn new training methods, techniques, which are followed in that part of the world. It will also help me do well with Jwala in women’s doubles, which is my pet event,” said the 2011 World Championship bronze winner.
Ponnappa, who has played with Ivanov in three tournaments so far, says finding the right mixed doubles partner is a tough task.
“It is a trial-and-error thing until you find the right partner,” said the 25-year-old player, who has previously partnered compatriot Tarun Kona.
For Ponnappa, the idea struck after her stint in the Indian Badminton League (IBL) last year. “You can say that the IBL experience of playing with Joachim Fischer has been the best for me so far. I learnt a lot while playing with Joachim. It made me open up to the idea of having a foreign partner for international meets,” the Bangalorean said.
With Ivanov, Ponnappa is aiming to improve her mixed doubles world ranking. “I have played three tournaments together with Ivanov and hopefully we will participate in more, next year. Improving on the mixed doubles rankings would be priority,” she said.
Though the association is allowed in Super Series, World Championships and other open championships, she will not be able to carry it to the Olympics or the Asian Games.
source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Sports> Badminton / by Tushar Dutt, TNN / November 15th, 2014
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