ESPN Films to beam sports documentary for 1st time in India

first_imgMumbai, Nov 22 (PTI) ESPN Films, which produces and distributes sports films and documentaries, today said it will be telecasting some of its critically acclaimed and award-winning sports documentaries for the first time in India.The series will be shown weekly on Sony ESPN and Sony ESPN HD channels and the documentaries will showcase the individual journeys of legends like Nelson Mandela, Sachin Tendulkar, Muhammad Ali, Diego Maradona, Andres Escobar, O J Simpson, among others, the company said in a statement.”These films go beyond sports and engage viewers with compelling, often unknown or previously unseen, narratives that capture the power, emotion and poignancy of sports in our lives,” Ramesh Kumar, Vice-President, Head of ESPN India and South Asia, said.Sony ESPN has shortlisted 50 films from the international archive available and has scheduled the first 13 over the next quarter.Then, it will review viewer feedback and tweak the slot and theme of movies being scheduled and plan subsequent programming accordingly. PTI DS NRB ARD BASlast_img read more

The world will be at Virat Kohli’s feet in a few years’ time: Sourav Ganguly to India Today

first_imgFormer India captain Sourav Ganguly on Sunday hailed Virat Kohli’s double hundred in the Mumbai Test and said that the future of Indian cricket rests on the shoulders of the Indian Test skipper. (SCORECARD | BALL-BY-BALL UPDATES)”The numbers can’t get better than this. If you look at the stats as skipper 30 matches, 3000-plus runs at an average of 100. To have an average like that in 30 matches on a consistent basis is unreal. Hopefully he continues to bat like this. (Virat Kohli joins Bradman, Ponting in elite list after third double hundred in 2016)”I’ve said this before that when Virat Kohli plays you sit on the sofa and watch. Because you see a man who’s passionate, you see a man who wants to win, you see a man who wants to take Indian cricket forward. Future of Indian cricket rests on Virat Kohli and if he continues like this his hunger, his want for runs, he’s got a good head on his shoulders. The world will be at his feet in a few years’ time,” Ganguly told India Today in an exclusive chat. (Mumbai Test: India eye victory after Kohli’s 235)Ganguly also praised Jayant Yadav, who struck his maiden Test hundred today and scored 104 runs in a 241-run partnership with Kohli for the eighth wicket. (Kohli made batting a lot easier, says Jayant Yadav)”Credit also needs to be given to Jayant Yadav and the way he batted. His technique looks so good. Yes you can say England didn’t have the best spinners in the world and they were bowling one lose delivery every over but you still have to put those bad ball away and Jayant has done that consistently. What stands out for me is his technique, his defence against the turning ball and I though he played exceptionally well with the captain. (Virat Kohli gives Wankhede, that Tendulkar experience)advertisement”For a young boy in his third Test match to show so much of maturity really speaks terrific of his character,” he said.Kohli, who was on 147 overnight, eventually fell on 235 to Chris Woakes but not before he put India in a position from where they could dictate terms against England. India posted 631 in their first innings, taking a lead of 231 runs. Spinners Ravindra Jadeja (2/58), Ravichandran Ashwin (2/49) and Jayant Yadav (1/39) then reduced England to 182/6 at the end of the day’s play with the visitors still 49 runs behind the hosts.As is the custom these days, whenever Kohli comes out to bat he breaks a plethora of records and today was no exception. Kohli’s majestic knock saw him become the first Indian captain in Test history to score three double hundreds in a calendar year.The 28-year-old also went past Mahendra Singh Dhoni to post the highest score by an Indian captain in Test cricket. Dhoni had scored 224 runs against Australia in Chennai in 2013. Kohli now averages more than 50 in all three formats of the game and is the only player in the world at the moment to do so.The Delhi dasher is also the fifth batsman in the world after Michael Clarke (4), Don Bradman (3), Ricky Ponting (3) and Brendon McCullum (3) to score three double hundreds in a calendar year.What impressed the Ganguly the most today was the situation in which Kohli scored his runs.”There have been batsmen in the past who have averaged over 50 in Test and ODI cricket in the same year but what stands out for Virat Kohli and makes him different from the rest is the situation and circumstances in which he gets his runs.”You look at the Vizag Test he came in when India were in a spot of bother, he knew how important that match was, he knew England were in a good position so he put the knockout punch by getting a big hundred. In Mumbai India were again in trouble because they had to bat fourth in this match, Kohli not only got a hundred but he made sure he took the game away from England.”So it’s not just about the 50-plus averages or the hundreds, but it’s a bit more than that with Virat Kohli. He just stamps his authority to win cricket matches for India be it in ODIs, Tests or T20Is,” Ganguly, who is a self-proclaimed Kohli fan, signed off.last_img read more

Report: Barcelona 8 Huesca 2

first_imgLionel Messi and Luis Suarez both scored twice to help Barcelona overcome a surprise early deficit and give Huesca a harsh reality check in an 8-2 thumping on Sunday.On their first LaLiga trip to Camp Nou, the newly promoted minnows briefly continued what has been a dream start to the season by sensationally opening the scoring through Juan Camilo Hernandez.But it proved little more than fleeting joy as Messi, Suarez and a Jorge Pulido own goal swiftly erased the early concern. 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! Alex Gallar did give Huesca a second reason to celebrate late in the first half before the gulf in class become evident over a one-sided second period.Messi and Suarez completed their braces at either end of the half and Ousmane Dembele, Ivan Rakitic and Jordi Alba all joined in the fun as the hosts comprehensively maintained their perfect start to the campaign.37 – Lionel Messi has scored against 37 of the 40 teams he has faced in his La Liga career (386 goals), the most ever of any player in the competition. Collector.— OptaJose (@OptaJose) September 2, 2018Barca’s polished second half could not have contrasted more greatly with their sluggish start to the match as they were breached for the first time this term inside three minutes, Hernandez diverting in Samuele Longo’s downward header.That only awakened the champions as they hastily overturned the deficit, Messi driving a right-footed finish into the bottom far corner before Pulido turned Alba’s cutback into his own net eight minutes later.Left-back Alba then squared for Suarez to double the advantage in the 39th minute but there was still time for Huesca to snatch a second before the break, Gallar punishing sleepy marking with a smart first-time finish.Barca were never unnerved and ended all doubt over the result with two more in fewer than five second-half minutes as Dembele buried his second of the season and Rakitic rifled in a splendid half-volley.Messi waltzed through to make it a rout just beyond the hour and next turned provider for the impressive Alba in the 81st minute, before Suarez added the final gloss in stoppage time by winning and converting his own penalty.What does it mean: Front three firingHeld to a one-goal victory at Valladolid last time out and having seen Real Madrid score four for the second match in succession on Saturday, Barca picked the right time to issue a reminder of their attacking muscle.Star men Messi, Suarez and Dembele crucially look to be functioning on the same wavelength and, with the supply lines of Alba and Coutinho in full working order, there should be no concerns over the potency of last season’s top scorers.Pat on the back: Alba makes Spain statementErnesto Valverde urged Alba to keep calm following his surprise omission from the latest Spain squad and the 29-year-old looks to have heeded his coach’s advice.The marauding left-sided defender was instrumental to the first-half turnaround, teeing up his side’s first and third goals before deservedly etching his own name on the scoresheet late in proceedings.9 – Jordi Alba has made nine assists in La Liga since last season, more than any other defender. Jet.— OptaJose (@OptaJose) September 2, 2018Boot up the backside: Luisinho exposedWhile Alba was influential for all the right reasons, the same cannot be said of fellow left-back Luisinho, who notably struggled under relentless examination.The Brazilian allowed Messi to turn him far too easily for the opener and further cost his side by keeping Alba onside, albeit marginally, in the lead-up to Barca’s third, which effectively any ended hope Huesca had of avoiding the subsequent landslide.What’s next?Barca’s first assignment after the international break is a trip to Real Sociedad, while Huesca will look to rebound at home to Rayo Vallecano. read morelast_img read more

Gattuso preaches caution after win

first_imgGennaro Gattuso has urged his side not to get carried away after a last-gasp 2-1 triumph over Genoa on Wednesday lifted AC Milan up to fourth in Serie A.Questions were raised over Gattuso’s future as Rossoneri head coach after a 1-0 derby defeat against Inter 10 days ago, but the 40-year-old has now steered his side to back-to-back victory to lift them into the Champions League qualification positions.They looked destined to only get a point after Alessio Romagnoli’s unfortunate own goal cancelled out Suso’s early opener. 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! There was a late twist in Milan’s favour, though, as Romagnoli took full advantage of a weak punch from Ionut Radu to hook a superb first-time volley over the stranded goalkeeper in stoppage time.Gattuso preached caution after the win and has challenged his side to prove they belong in the upper echelons of Serie A.”The victory has allowed us to reach fourth place, but this is just a first step,” he told a news conference.After…Dopo…#MilanGenoa #ANewMilan— AC Milan (@acmilan) October 31, 2018″We now have to demonstrate that we can remain in that position.”We made things complicated by conceding an incredible goal but being able to bring the victory home is a good sign.”I continue to do my job and what we’ve been through is a good sign.”Romagnoli went from zero to hero with his dramatic late winner and believes Milan are being overly criticised for their start to the season.”We deserved the victory,” he told Sky Sport Italia. “We played very well.”I’m sorry for my own goal. I was unlucky, but I made up for it. In my opinion, we’ve been criticised too much.”The results are what count and we got another. We must improve and stay near the top.” read morelast_img read more

Virat Kohli opens up about that sensational catch to dismiss Rahul Tripathi

first_imgVirat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore might have lost to Steve Smith’s Rising Pune Supergiant by 27 runs in Bangalore but he perhaps has managed to pull off the catch of the tournament already.Kohli held onto a blinder to get rid of Rahul Tripathi of Pawan Negi’s bowling in the ninth over during Pune’s innings. (SCORECARD)Tripathi and Ajinkya Rahane put on a brilliant partnership for Pune to begin the innings but the latter fell in the eighth over. It was then left to Tripathi to carry on the momentum of the good start. As Negi was introduced, Tripathi, who was batting on 31 off 22 balls, drove fiercely through covers only to get the be shock of his life a few seconds later. (RCB vs RPS highlights)The RCB captain flew to his left and caught the ball with his left hand and threw it in the air to leave the batsman completely bewildered.Talking about the screamer in the post-match interview, Kohli said that it is one of the best catches he has ever taken.”One of the best catches that I have taken ever. Just reflexes. All the training drills go into that,” said the 28-year-old. However, it couldn’t prevent RCB from losing their third match in a row. They have just one win out of four matches in this year’s Indian Premier League and are on the bottom of the table.Bangalore will next play the second last team — Gujarat Lions on April 18 in Rajkot.last_img read more

No end to bad days for Rajasthan cricket

first_imgRajasthan Cricket Association has been suspended by the Board of Cricket Control of India (BCCI) for long now and any hope that its misfortunes would end with elections of a new committee on April 26 got demolished with the cancellation of the polling.The RCA had elected Lalit Modi, former IPL chairman as its president in May 2014, forcing BCCI to suspend the body. The state since then has not been allotted any Test, one-day or even IPL matches.In recent months, Modi’s son Ruchir threw his hat in the ring after he was quietly elected to head Alwar District Association. He later announced his candidature to replace his father and when it appeared a smooth victory for him, CP Joshi, AICC general secretary, and former RCA president entered the field.Now Lalit Modi faces a major problem in not getting a clear signal from Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje who once ensured his entry into RCA and rise as IPL founder during her previous tenure. That makes many representatives of the RCA reluctant to side with him. Also, even if they are willing to accept Ruchir as their chief, they want to get remaining posts for themselves and not Modi’s men.Although CP Joshi in his tenure as president hardly did anything significant to the cricket but many who want to build their fortune through RCA see a hope in allying with him. Moreover, Raje had just visited him to express condolences on his mother’s demise.Joshi was likely to win April 26 poll had he contested but at the last moment, registrar, Cooperative Societies raised certain queries about rules being followed for the elections. The elections were being held according to recommendations of Lodha committee some of which contradicted the Rajasthan Sports Act recognized by the registrar for elections.advertisementThis gave Modi loyalists a reprieve and given they are in power in RCA, they succeeded in recommending deferment of the RCA elections.That brings RCA back to status quo of being shunned by the BCCI.Will government repeal the Sports Act or amend it to meet Lodha committee’s recommendations and make an ad-hoc committee sans Modi to run RCA until then? That is the only way out but before that, there will be lot more bargaining among stakeholders. Cricket in Rajasthan will continue to suffer until then.last_img read more

RPS vs RCB: Confident Pune fancy win against depleted Bangalore

first_imgRising Pune Supergiant (RPS) will aim to shed off their inconsistent run in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2017 on Saturday, when they take on a depleted Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), who are almost out of the race to the play-offs.After back to back wins against Sunrisers Hyderabad and Mumbai Indians, the Pune side went down to Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in their previous outing, to be at the fourth spot in the standings.On the other hand, last year’s runners-up RCB have found the going tough this season, managing to win only two of their nine matches to be languishing at the penultimate spot in the eight-team table.Going into Saturday’s first double-header at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium here, Pune will bank on their in-form opening duo of Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi to give the team a great start.The middle order comprising the likes of captain Steve Smith, Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Manoj Tiwary has the experience to take the opposition bowlers to the cleaners at ease. With all-rounders Daniel Christian and Rajat Bhatia the lower order batting can come in handy if needed.In the bowling department, the young Indian pace duo of Jaydev Unadkat and Shardul Thakur have impressed both in the opening and death overs while leg-spinner Imran Tahir, Christian and rookie tweaker Washington Sundar can provide the breakthroughs as well as stop the flow of runs in the middle overs.Meanwhile, the Virat Kohli-led RCB have their task cut out if they are to stand any chance of making it to the play-offs.advertisementThe flop show in all the departments against Gujarat Lions at home on Thursday will only haunt them more when they take the field here.RCB’s fortunes depend on their captain and his opening partner Chris Gayle’s domination at the top along with South African AB de Villiers, who also failed to fire against the Lions.Wicketkeeper-batsman Kedar Jadhav was the lone bright spot along with all-rounder Pawan Negi but that was not enough for them to get over the line.RCB’s bowling too looked toothless with the likes of Sreenath Aravind, Travis Head, Aniket Choudhary failing to impress. Samuel Badree and Negi managed to be amongst the wickets.Squads:Rising Pune Supergiant: Steve Smith (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Ankit Sharma, Baba Aparajith, Ankush Bains, Rajat Bhatia, Deepak Chahar, Rahul Chahar, Daniel Christian, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (WK), Ashoke Dinda, Faf du Plessis, Lockie Ferguson, Imran Tahir, Jaskaran Singh, Usman Khawaja, Ajinkya Rahane, Saurabh Kumar, Ben Stokes Washington Sundar, Milind Tandon, Manoj Tiwary, Adam Zampa, Jaydev Unadkat, Ishwar Pandey, Rahul Tripathi, Shardul Thakur.Royal Challengers Bangalore: Virat Kohli (Captain), Sreenath Aravind, Avesh Khan, Samuel Badree, Stuart Binny, Yuzvendra Chahal, Aniket Choudhary, AB de Villiers, Praveen Dubey, Chris Gayle, Harpreet Singh, Travis Head, Iqbal Abdulla, Kedar Jadhav, Mandeep Singh, Tymal Mills, Adam Milne, Pawan Negi, Harshal Patel, Sachin Baby, Tabraiz Shamsi, Billy Stanlake, Vishnu Vinod, Shane Watson.last_img read more

2nd Test: Chase century lifts West Indies out of trouble against Pakistan on Day 1

first_imgA polished century by Roston Chase guided West Indies out of trouble and into a decent position on 286 for six against Pakistan on the first day of the second Test in Barbados on Sunday. (Scorecard)Chase, 131 at stumps, combined with captain Jason Holder for an unbeaten 132-run seventh-wicket stand at Kensington Oval in Bridgetown.An all-too-familiar top-order collapse brought Chase to the crease with the hosts reeling at 3-37 after Kraigg Brathwaite (9), Shimron Hetmyer (1) and Shai Hope (5) had all fallen cheaply for the third time in as many attempts in the series.Chase, with help from opener Kieran Powell (38) and wicketkeeper-batsman Shane Dowrich (29), added some respectability to the score before Holder chimed in with 58 not out to leave the honours perhaps just about even.Chase’s second Test century, in just his ninth Test, featured a variety of shots, as he scored almost equally on both sides of the wicket, stroking 17 fours in his 207-ball hit.West Indies had won the toss and decided to bat, naming an unchanged 11 from the first Test, while Pakistan gave a Test debut to teenage leg-spinner Shadab Khan.He finished the day with 1-90 as the Pakistan bowlers shared the spoils, with pacemen Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Abbas taking two wickets apiece, while leg-spinner Yasir Shah chipped in with one.However, the visitors perhaps rued playing only four specialist bowlers.Pakistan lead the three-Test series 1-0.last_img read more


first_imgThe personal is politicalAt the first Kochi-Muziris Biennale, artist Anita Dube positioned a ladder beneath a hole in the ceiling. It led to an attic containing a sphere, a long red rope and various geometric forms. Climbing up the ladder into the installation, the viewer was suspended in time and,The personal is politicalAt the first Kochi-Muziris Biennale, artist Anita Dube positioned a ladder beneath a hole in the ceiling. It led to an attic containing a sphere, a long red rope and various geometric forms. Climbing up the ladder into the installation, the viewer was suspended in time and space, halfway into an “attic” that was both a place of the abandoned and the fairytale.For Dube, the work was, like all her art, both personal and political. The ladder made the hidden attic of children’s memories accessible to everyone-creating an egalitarian dream space where viewers confronted both the science of Euclidian forms and the mysteries of the imagination. Selected last month to curate the third edition of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale in 2018, Dube will likely steer the prestigious artist-led exhibition in a similar direction.A former member of the Radical Painters’ (and Sculptors’) Association-where she began as an art historian and critic-Dube’s work has always been politically conscious. Last year, for instance, her installation, Stone Mountain, featured 365 stones wrapped in velvet and piled onto glass shelves to form the shape of a mountain. It was freighted with associations with Kashmir’s stone pelters and the struggle for azaadi. It had everything to do with the bloodiness of the times, she says.”I am respecting the stone, and the right to defend yourself. We know the feeling of being trapped. These are my concerns,” says Dube. Despite her early commitment to a Marxist interpretation of the relationship between art and politics, she now says there are no easy answers to questions like whether art should be political.advertisementBorn in 1968, Dube grew up in a family of doctors in Lucknow but pursued liberal arts in Delhi and later took up art history as part of her master’s at MS University in Baroda. Eventually, she turned to art due to frustration with the restrictions posed by language.”Visualising is so much more universal than speaking or writing. Visual language doesn’t have vernacular restrictions and it is free,” she says.A poster with ‘silence’ scribbled all over it hangs on the wall in her house, in one of Delhi’s first modernist housing projects. Among the artwork scattered around her living room are the first few wooden sculptures that she made after turning from criticism to making her own art. In this space-cosy, rather than ostentatious-she outlines her vision for next year’s Biennale. One thing is certain: “It will be more inclusive of ideas,” she says.Though she’s known for saying that art is a luxury, as an artist, Dube takes up the cause of beauty, which to her is the affirmation of life against death. In this moment, an artist can choose to be self-absorbed, she says. Artistic positions are many, she says. “I want to live history in my time, to feel alive, to be angry, to be sad. Art is a privileged position because we have the luxury of dreaming. In underdeveloped countries, people spend their lives trying to eat, to think, to make or to not make. We are spoilt. We are part of the privileged but we have a responsibility. I have to give back something through my art,” she says.What form will that giving take in 2018? The only certainty is that Dube will make her own path.-Chinki SinhaHorror’s first familySuffering from a huge setback at the box-office, movie producer F.U. Ramsay took a hard decision to slash costs the next time around. That’s how he landed up in Kashmir in the off-season with his seven sons, and rented a houseboat to conduct classes in film-making for his brood. Over three gruelling months, he taught them everything he knew.He’d left Mumbai with his family; he returned with a highly trained film crew that went on to make India’s first horror film, Do Gaz Zameen Ke Neeche (1972).Indian films were never quite the same afterwards, journalist Shamya Dasgupta writes in Don’t Disturb the Dead, a forthcoming book about the Ramsays, India’s first family of horror. While Hindi cinema had previously ventured into Gothic suspense with the likes of Kamaal Amrohi’s Mahal, Do Gaz… was something new: a psychological thriller and scream flick about a husband who returns from the dead to haunt his cheating wife and her lover.The Ramsays followed up with Darwaza (1978) and other films which made horror a commercially viable Bollywood genre. The Ramsay style blends classic Hammer references with elements from Indian lore, as well as lowbrow comedy, shower scenes and trendy disco music. It’s a big unholy mix of influences: Baal meets Mahakaal, vampires are warded off with Om signs and tantriks wear the hooded robes of medieval Christian monks.advertisementThe typical Ramsay film is a product of the VCR era, an assemblage in which every scene refers to some film or the other. Veerana (1988) even supplies a meta-narrative with Satish Shah playing a would-be horror filmmaker named Hitchcock who views the world through finger frames.Thematically, the films are fairly consistent. The plots invariably feature the thakur of a feudal mansion, a convoluted family curse and a monster in the cellar which awakens to terrorise a new generation of screamers. The primal fear evoked here is a horror of the past, of dark secrets best left undisturbed.Horror films can reveal society’s deepest fears and anxieties, so the Ramsay films should perhaps be seen as a mirror of their troubled times. Was it mere coincidence that the Ramsays released Tahkhana the same year that the gates of Mir Baqi’s mosque were unlocked in Ayodhya? Or was it a prescient warning about the dangers of poking around in the dingy basements of history? Too late to speculate: the zombie hordes are already upon us with their sharp tridents, hungry for flesh.-Rajesh DevrajPhir Se RamsaySaasha Ramsay, the daughter of horror film specialist Shyam Ramsay, is charged with continuing her family’s legacy. In Phir Se Ramsay, a series of shorts available on the youth-focused YouTube channel 101, she brings the screams, the flickering lights-and some gore too. The result, sadly, is not all that frightening. On the other hand, what the banal works most certainly do showcase is that Saasha has inherited her family’s penchant for camp.”Thoda skin show karna padta hai (one needs to have a little sex appeal),” says Shyam Ramsay in one of the rare watchable introductory shorts, where the co-director of cult horror films like Purana Mandir and Purani Haveli shares his thought process. “Relaxation ke liye hum filmon mein daalte hain (we put in sex appeal because it helps people relax).”For her part, Saasha Ramsay says that the series is her attempt to revive the 1980s era and the genre. Unfortunately, there’s little ingenuity on display here. Instead, viewers are treated to familiar tropes: abandoned villas (havelis are passe) in isolated settings, the dead rising from their graves, skin-show and of course, the seductive chudail (a.k.a. the witch).That said, brushing aside the Ramsay legacy would also be a disservice. The Ramsay films came at a time when Indian moviegoers didn’t have easy access to Hollywood and world cinema. These days, with portals like Netflix and HotStar offering plenty of Hollywood and independent horror films, Ramsay’s five shorts fall short on both thrill and chill. Better viewing would be India’s Scariest Man Rises From The Grave, a short documentary on Aniruddha Agarwal, the actor who played Saamri (and other monsters) in many of Ramsay’s films.-Suhani SinghLilly LiveredNumbers don’t lie. 11 million subscribers can’t be wrong, can they? Or 1.8 billion video views? In India this month, Canadian YouTube personality Lilly Singh-yes, that’s a legitimate occupation now; ready yourself in case your child wants to become one-did a series of shows to promote her first book, How to Be a Bawse. With the cheapest tickets priced at Rs 1,500 and meet-and-greet tickets selling for Rs 8,500, the shows were packed with teenaged girls sporting their arturo caps back-to-front, unsuspecting parents in tow.advertisementHer YouTube channel, ||Superwoman||, is best known for spoofs of how Indian parents deal with growing children, especially with teen girls of Indian/NRI/Punjabi extraction. Her impressions are particularly popular, and she makes up for her limited comedic material with her talent at voice modulation. Superwoman is now materialising out of her digital avatar. She has moved to Hollywood to break into films and TV. While she works that heroic path, she’s opened a sideline as a self-help guru and a motivational speaker as well.What wisdom does she offer? “Play Nintendo in your life”-when you play Nintendo, you can control only Mario, not any of the other variants. Then there are other quotes like “hustle harder”, “send the GPS deep”, “climb the ladder” and “schedule inspiration”. Until she makes it big-no doubt, many parents are praying her acting career takes off so that she has no time for YouTube-we have her gentle guiding hand for our young people. Capisce?-Sopan JoshiShort Trip to CannesThanks to Payal Kapadia, India’s presence at the Cannes Film Festival won’t be restricted to the usual red carpet appearances by Bollywood celebs. A student at the Film & Television Institute of India (FTII) in Pune, Kapadia will travel with Afternoon Clouds, one of the 16 student short films in contention for the top prize in the Cinefondation category.Shot in 2016, the film follows the relationship between a 60-year-old widow and her domestic help from Nepal. Kapadia’s observations of the equation between her own grandmother and her help from Darjeeling have shaped the film. “While staying with her, I began to notice a few daily rituals and conversations,” she says. “I was interested in the notions of love that two single women have at different ages and points in their life. Women in India cannot speak about these matters very openly. I wanted to explore these emotions with gestures and silences.”Daughter of painter and video artist Nalini Malani, Kapadia was raised on a diet of experimental and independent films at home as well as at her boarding school, Rishi Valley, where the film club introduced her to filmmakers like Ritwik Ghatak and Andrei Tarkovsky. Kapadia was all praise for FTII, whose campus has seen a surge of student protest in the last few years. “FTII has really shaped the way I look at my practice,” she says. “It allowed me to question myself through my work without any kind of pressure. I have been able to continue my experiments in cinematic forms. I am interested in different forms of storytelling that combine reality, myth and memory.”?The Cannes selection isn’t the first feather in Kapadia’s cap. Her earlier film, The Last Mango Before the Monsoon, won the FIPRESCI Prize at the International Short Film Festival of Oberhausen (2015) and also Best Film at the Mumbai International Film Festival (2016). At Cannes, she’s hoping to catch a few in competition titles, particularly entries by one of her favourite filmmakers, Naomi Kawase. “The line-up this year is really very good,” she says.-Suhani SinghInternational Dance DayThe guru-shishya parampara (mentor-student tradition) has long been an integral part of Indian classical dance. But in a globalised world, India’s gurukuls are under threat. With International Dance Day falling on April 29, here’s a look at a few institutions that are not only preserving the performing arts but also reviving traditional dances so that they remain relevant for future generations.Kalka Bindadeen ki DeohriThis 200-year-old house has been converted into a museum. It has been the home of the doyens of the Lucknow school of kathak including Lachhu Maharaj. The Deohri showcases artefacts, clothes, ornaments, ghunghroos, photographs and books belonging to the family-which practised and taught on the premises.KalakshetraPhoto: Jaison GFounded by the legendary Rukmini Devi Arundale, Kalakshetra’s open campus features a massive banyan tree that’s a photographer’s dream. A walkthrough is richly rewarded with a range of sounds and sights-from teachers reciting Carnatic music bols and musicians practising instruments to students clad in dhotis and half saris polishing the symmetry of their Bharatanatyam movements.NrityagramProtima Gauri headed to Hesaraghatta to establish this sylvan abode in 1990. Designed by renowned architect Gerard Da Cunha, it currently houses two of the finest Odissi dancers in the country-Surupa Sen and Bijayini Satpathy. Call two days in advance for a tour and perhaps to catch a glimpse of the duo in action. You can also book a lecture demonstration or a private performance.Artist’s JourneyPhoto: Rajwant RawatForty years ago, Sonal Mansingh established the Centre for Indian Classical Dances (CICD). It began, she says, when a girl named Swati Gupta arrived at her door, asking to be taught to dance. No amount of refusal proved enough to dissuade her-and so, Mansingh says, “on April 30, 1977, in a rented house in Defence Colony, I registered my institution.” Four decades later, the Centre is still going strong. To celebrate its run thus far, the CICD will present a three day festival at Kamani Auditorium from April 30 to May 2, titled ‘Kala Yatra: A Celebration of Indian Art Traditions’.At 73, Mansingh is still energetic. They say that one is formed by what one desires-in her case, it was passion. A passion to dance, to explore performance. “There was this flame burning inside me that pushed me,” she says. She even told her students that they would have to give dancing their all. That she would reserve the right to call them at any hour, for however long-and there should be no questions asked and no complaints made. These were the conditions she laid on her students, and the conditions under which she herself learned. Her discipline and commitment have served her well-Mansingh has been the recipient of both the Padma Vibhushan (2003) and the Padma Bhushan (1992), among other honours. Even so, awards do not drive her. “Never chase anything,” she says. “Live your passion.”The end of the festival will be marked by the launch of her biography, titled Sonal Mansingh: A Life Like No Other, written by Sujata Prasad. “That’s my entire life in there,” says Mansingh.-Chinki SinhaMythical StarPhoto: Mandar DeodharTamannaah, actor, on vanity, her past life, and loo ettiquette.Q: The oddest place you’ve ever been asked ‘Why did Kattappa kill Baahubali’?A: The airport bathroom. I was making my way to the loo, and someone just randomly stopped and asked me. I was like ‘Can I just finish first and then get to you?’Q: The toughest day on the sets of Baahubali?A: We were shooting my first fight scene in Mahabaleshwar. It was pouring. It was physically draining: the costume I was wearing was heavy and I was wet. But nothing can stop Raj sir from shooting.Q: One attribute of Avantika’syou possess/ would like to possess?A: Like her, I don’t appreciate myself fora lot of things I do. A lot of women do this-we only look at the faults and what we could have done better. It’s my parents, friends and family who tell me I’m doing this well and right. Of course, sword-fighting skills would also come in handy.Q: One thing you can’t do without on set?A: I sound so vain-but I do need my mirror.Q: Your all-time favourite movie?A: Dil Toh Pagal Hai in Hindi and The Mummy in English. I have a strong feeling that I was an Egyptian in my last life.-with Suhani SinghWatch Listlast_img read more

JK Rowling’s Harry Potter completes 20 years today. Feeling old yet?

first_imgExactly 20 years ago, an orphan wizard named Harry Potter and a legion of readers young and old, began to discover a magical universe hidden in plain sight, in the pages of British author JK Rowling’s first book.Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, curtain-raiser to a seven-tome series of children’s books, was first published in the United Kingdom on June 26, 1997.Six more Harry Potter books, eight cinematic adaptations, a play, and several spin-offs later, Rowling today told her 10,800,000-odd Twitter followers that the journey had been “wonderful.”20 years ago today a world that I had lived in alone was suddenly open to others. It’s been wonderful. Thank you.#HarryPotter20- J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 26, 2017The 51-year-old author has since written books for adults – both as herself and under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. But the undisputed highlight of her literary career remains the septet of Potter books. As many as 450 million copies in almost 80 languages have been sold, Rowling’s official website says.Using the hashtag #HarryPotter20, fans took to social media to pay tribute to her achievement.Thank you @jk_rowling for creating one of the most beautiful worlds I’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting. #HarryPotter20 Shannon Purser (@shannonpurser) June 26, 2017Happy #HarryPotter20 This book and movie is my childhood. When my parents got me the wand, cloak, and glasses; I swear I could do anything.- Max Ehrich (@maxehrich) June 26, 2017I can’t believe it, 20 years ago you gave us this wonderful world, wow!? #HarryPotter20 @jk_rowling ? An (@an_guila) June 26, 2017Pottermore, Rowling’s digital publishing company, told readers how they could have their tweets displayed at London’s King’s Cross station. In the books, Harry Potter crosses an invisible, magical barrier between platforms 9 and 10 to catch the train that takes him to his school, Hogwarts.Celebrate 20 years of magic with us today! Use #HarryPotter20 and your tweet could be displayed in King’s Cross: Pottermore (@pottermore) June 26, 2017The last lines of the Potter books may have been written, but readers and movie-goers enamoured of the world confectioned by Rowling’s imagination – with its spells, and curses, chocolate frogs, and broom-based contact sports – need not despair. One of the Potter spin-offs, Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them, will become a series of five films, the first of which was released in 2016.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more

Telangana cricketer selected in US womens cricket team

first_imgHyderabad, Jun 27 (PTI) Sindhuja Reddy, a woman cricketer from Telangana, has find a place in the American team, which recently earned recognition from the sports governing body ICC.Sindhuja would be wicket-keeper-batsman for Americas womens cricket team, according to a release from the Telangana governments information department.The cricketer, who has played in the Ranji Trophy for Hyderabads womens team, recently married one Siddha Reddy who is settled in the US, said the release.The ICC recently recognised the American cricket team, it said.Sindhuja would play in the qualifying match of the womens World Cup to be played in Scotland, the release said. PTI SJR RSYlast_img

Chinas SAIC Motor to set up Rs 2,000cr car plant in Gujarat

first_imgGandhinagar, Jul 5 (PTI) Chinas SAIC Motor Corp will set up a passenger car manufacturing facility at Halol in Panchmahals district of Gujarat with an investment of Rs 2,000 crore.The Chinese auto major today entered into an MoU with the Gujarat government to establish the plant at Halol, around 160km from here, where MG brand cars will be manufactured.The company expects to invest over Rs 2,000 crore in the next five years and begin production from 2019, a government release said.The MoU was signed between SAIC Motor officials and state government representatives in the presence of Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, it said.The facility will come up at the same place where General Motors earlier had its plant, said M K Das, Gujarats principal secretary, industry and mines department.The project will create 1,000 jobs in the state and enable five auto ancillary firms – Yan Feng, Huichoung, Waling Industry, Ling Yun and Sevic – to set up their units in the vicinity, creating more employment avenues, the release said.SAIC Motor plans to bring the MG car brand in India by 2019.The Chinese firm had earlier said it plans to operate in the country through a fully-owned subsidiary, MG Motor India, and appointed ex-General Motors India head Rajeev Chaba as its president and MD.It has also roped in auto industry veteran P Balendran as executive director.As part of India entry plans, the company would introduce environment-friendly mobility solutions under its iconic MG (Morris Garages) brand.Earlier this year, SAIC signed a `term sheet to evaluate buying the Halol plant of General Motors in Gujarat after the American company decided to stop production as part of consolidation of manufacturing operations in India.advertisementIn 2009, SAIC had bought 50 per cent stake in General Motors India during the bankruptcy crisis faced by the US auto major. Later, GM had bought back the stake.SAIC is ranked 46th in the Fortune Global 500 list of companies with an annual revenue of over USD 100 billion.The introduction of the iconic British sports car brand MG in India is an important part of SAIC Motors global strategy, the company had earlier said.The MG brand, which originated as a British racing sports brand in 1924, has evolved into a modern-day innovative brand.MG products, designed and engineered at its European and global design centres, will be manufactured in India while conforming to global quality standards and aligning with the Indian regulations, emission norms and driving conditions, the company had said. PTI KA PD RSYlast_img

Juventus F.C. star Leonardo Bonucci set for shock transfer to AC Milan

first_imgJuventus defensive stalwart Leonardo Bonucci was on Friday set to complete a shock move to AC Milan for a reported transfer fee of around 45 million US dollar due to his alleged frosty relationship with the Turin football giants’ head coach Massimiliano Allegri.The 30-year-old, who has won 70 caps for Italy, arrived at Milan headquarters and the seven-time European champions released videos and images of the player meeting the city club CEO Marco Fassone.It is being reported that he will undergo his medicals later in the day before signing a five-year deal with a salary of eight million euros (9.16 million US dollar) per season at the club that currently boasts a project to take it back to its glory days. With this salary, he could be the Italian league’s highest-paid footballer.Bonucci is part of Juventus’ famed BBC defensive trio alongside Andrea Barzagli and Giorgio Chiellini who have powered the Turin outfit to six Serie A titles and two finals in three Champions League campaigns.His future at Juventus has been uncertain for some time following a bust-up with Allegri in Februrary. There are also reports about him being unhappy with arguments with the coach and some players during the Champions League final loss to Real Madrid in June in Cardiff.Bonucci was a summer transfer target for both Manchester City and Chelsea following a successful seven-year spell in Turin.He will now become the latest in a string of signings by Milan this summer. Under their new Chinese owners, they have already signed at least six players who can start for the team.advertisementlast_img read more

Sri Lanka paid the price for dropping Shikhar Dhawan’s catch, says team manager Asanka Gurusinha

first_imgSri Lanka’s cricket manager Asanka Gurusinha today rued the dropped catch of Shikhar Dhawan, saying the team paid a heavy price as India finished day one of the first Test at 399 for three.Dhawan was on 31 at the time when his catch was dropped and the opener went on to score 190 off 168 deliveries.”It is hard to appreciate bowlers’ effort after you concede 400 runs in a day. India are a very strong side. We dropped a catch of Dhawan and then paid a price. Not sure what would have happened had that catch been taken,” said the manager at the press conference.Sri Lanka suffered a double blow as Asela Gunaratne sustained a broken thumb on his left hand while attempting a catch of Dhawan off the bowling of Lahiru Kumara. He has been subsequently ruled out of the remainder of the Test series and the hosts will be playing this game with just 10 players.”It was a double blow. We dropped the catch and lost a player,” said Gurusinha.”It’s sad. He will undergo a surgery in a short while.”Most probably he will be out for a minimum of four weeks. We will know in the next 48 hours about the time frame. He has fractured his thumb in three places. As soon as we saw the x- rays we knew it was very serious and we rushed him to Colombo,” the manager added.The Lankan bowling attack came a cropper as it simply failed to contain the Indian batsmen, particularly Dhawan who punished them with 31 fours and scored at a rate in excess of 100. He put on 253 runs with Cheteshwar Pujara, who also scored a century, remaining unbeaten at stumps on 144.advertisement”We know Dhawan wasn’t in the initial squad but then he came back into the side and showed the selectors what he is capable of. It was a good track for him and we also ended up bowling to his strength, and he capitalised on that,” said Gurusinha.”But we have to be honest that we didn’t bowl well. Nuwan Pradeep was the only outstanding bowler I thought. It’s a really good batting wicket. I heard Virat (Kohli) talking that it is a good batting wicket. We bowled on both sides of the wicket as well. Dhawan just took over the game. His 190-run knock was one reason we find ourselves in this situation.”However, Gurusinha expressed confidence that his batsmen could still turn the game around with a good show.”They will recall the manner in which Lanka beat India turning around a similarly dominant performance from the visitors on day one of the series back in 2015. You never know. This is Galle and after scoring 600 runs you can still lose a Test match.”Our batsmen have to just to go out and play good cricket. Let’s see what happens in the last two days. We need to first try and get India out tomorrow. We will probably bat somewhere tomorrow,” he said.last_img read more

Gayle, Sehwag to play T10 league in UAE

first_imgBengaluru, Aug 23 (PTI) Virender Sehwag, Chris Gayle, Shahid Afridi and Kumar Sangakkara will be part of the T10 league, named Ten Cricket League, in the UAE. Teams playing in the league are – Team Punjabis, Team Pakhtoons, Team Maratha, Team Banglas, Team Lankans, Team Sindhis and Team Keralites, among others. Afridi will lead Team Pakhtoons. Habib Khan, owner of Pakhtoons commented, “I am excited to have Shahid Afridi, one of the greatest cricketers ever, to lead my team and you will see Pakhtoons in full force.” The league will have 10-over-a-side match with 90 minutes of action, spread over four days. The event will begin on December 21 and culminate on December 24 at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. Shaji ul Mulk, president of TCL, said, “We are very excited about the concept of T10 as it brings cricket to the level of world sports of 90 minutes and fast pace action. “We all enjoy T20. Wait till you experience T10! We have based this league on a South Asian concept as we have a dominant south Asian, cricket crazy population in the UAE and GCC,” he said. The auction will be conducted in the United Arab Emirates. PTI BDN AH AHlast_img read more

Hall of Fame Slugger Kiner Dies

first_imgNEW YORK – Ralph Kiner was a smash as a slugger, launching so many home runs over the left-field wall at old Forbes Field that fans nicknamed it his corner.Years later, as one of baseball’s most beloved broadcasters, he became a big hit in a new “Kiner’s Korner.”Kiner, the Hall of Famer whose frequent malaprops endeared him to New York Mets listeners for more than a half-century, died Feb. 6. He was 91. The Hall of Fame said Kiner died at his home in Rancho Mirage, Calif., with his family at his side.“He was a jewel,” Mets Hall of Famer Tom Seaver said.Kiner hit 369 home runs during a 10-year career cut short by back problems. He debuted with Pittsburgh in 1946 and won or tied for the National League lead in homers in each of his first seven seasons.He was popular off the field, too. His Hollywood pals included Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra, he squired Liz Taylor and Janet Leigh, and he played himself in the 1951 film Angels in the Outfield.Kiner became a Mets announcer in their expansion season of 1962, working 17 years as a trio with Bob Murphy and Lindsey Nelson. Kiner called their games for 52 years in all, including a handful of them last season.Kiner was already a fixture on the Mets’ airwaves when he was inducted into the Hall in 1975. He was elected with just one vote to spare in his 15th and final year on the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballot.The six-time All-Star outfielder still ranks sixth all-time with a home run every 14.1 at-bats. He averaged more than 100 RBIs per season and hit .279 with the Pirates, the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland.When he retired, Kiner was sixth on the career home run list.To generations of TV viewers and radio listeners, his postcareer acclaim was as great as the honors he earned on the field.“Kiner’s Korner” was a delight for players and fans alike, where stars would join Kiner for postgame chats.“I loved going on ‘Kiner’s Korner.’ I enjoyed talking baseball with Ralph, especially learning about players from his era,” former Mets star Dwight Gooden said. “But what really made it special was every time you went on, you got a $100. For a rookie like me in 1984, a $100 was a big deal.”Kiner was known for tripping over his own words, and often laughed about his own comments. “If Casey Stengel were alive today, he’d be spinning in his grave,” he once commented after a misplay.“On Father’s Day, we again wish you all a happy birthday,” he also said.Then there was the time Gary Carter hit a winning home run in the 10th inning of his Mets’ debut in 1985 and Kiner introduced him as Gary Cooper, the famed actor.“Gary was a great sport about it,” Kiner remembered. “He came on ‘Kiner’s Korner’ afterward and introduced himself to me as Gary Cooper and even signed a picture to me, ‘Gary Cooper Carter.’”His observations were pretty astute, too. Talking about a former Gold Glove outfielder, Kiner remarked: “Two-thirds of the earth is covered by water. The other third is covered by Garry Maddox.”Kiner had a stroke about a decade ago that slowed his speech, but remained an occasional part of the Mets’ announcing crew.Fellow announcers such as Keith Hernandez and Ron Darling always brightened when Kiner was alongside them. Younger fans who were born long after Kiner retired also reveled in his folksy tales.“As one of baseball’s most prolific power hitters for a decade, Ralph struck fear into the hearts of the best pitchers of baseball’s Golden Era despite his easygoing nature, disarming humility and movie-star smile,” Hall President Jeff Idelson said in a statement.“His engaging personality and profound knowledge of the game turned him into a living room companion for millions of New York Mets fans who adored his game broadcasts and later ‘Kiner’s Korner’ for more than half a century,” he said. “He was as comfortable hanging out in Palm Springs with his friend Bob Hope as he was hitting in front of Hank Greenberg at Forbes Field.”As a teen, hanging around the Hollywood Stars in the Pacific Coast League, Kiner shook hands with Babe Ruth and talked ball with Ty Cobb. In high school, he hit a home run off Satchel Paige during a barnstorming tour.After serving as a Navy pilot in World War II, Kiner had a strong rookie year and won the NL homer title with 23, beating Johnny Mize by one. He really broke loose the next year, hitting 51 home runs with 127 RBIs while batting .313.Stuck on poor teams, Kiner never made it to the postseason. He made his mark in All-Star games, homering in three straight.Kiner connected in the 1950 showcase at Comiskey Park, but made more noise with another ball he hit in the game. He hit a long drive to the base of the scoreboard in left-center field and Ted Williams broke his left elbow making the catch, causing him to miss two months.“Williams always said I ruined his batting stroke, that he could never hit after that,” Kiner said. “Yeah, sure. He only hit .388 in ’57.”Mets owner Fred Wilpon remembered Kiner as “one of the most beloved people in Mets history — an original Met and extraordinary gentleman.”“His knowledge of the game, wit, and charm entertained generations of Mets fans. Like his stories, he was one of a kind,” he said. “Our sport and society today lost one of the all-time greats.”The Mets named the home TV booth at Shea Stadium in his honor. The Pirates retired Kiner’s No. 4.“All of us at the Pittsburgh Pirates have heavy hearts upon learning of Ralph Kiner’s passing,” the team said in a statement.Ralph McPherran Kiner was born on Oct. 27, 1922. He was first married to tennis star Nancy Chaffee. Following their divorce he married Barbara George, and following another divorce he married DiAnn Shugart, who died in 2004.(Ben Walker, AP Baseball Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Red Sox End Mets’ Streak, 6-4

first_imgNEW YORK — If this had been a playoff game, New York Mets Manger Terry Collins would have let Matt Harvey pitch one more inning. But it wasn’t, so he took his ace out after the sixth.Harvey, throwing for the first time in 11 days after the NL East leaders skipped his turn in an effort to manage his innings, blanked Boston on two singles and struck out eight Aug. 28.Too bad for Harvey, he needed 103 pitches to go that far. And he could only watch after that as the Red Sox 6-4 in 10 innings, ending the Mets’ seven-game winning streak.“He wanted to throw another inning,” Collins said. “I said we can’t do it, that’s why we gave you time off.”Harvey exited with a 2-0 lead. “In my mind, in a close ballgame like that, I feel like I need to be out there for the seventh and eighth inning,” Harvey said. “Unfortunately, I just couldn’t quite keep the pitch count down.”Collins then turned the game over to his tired bullpen, which was unable to protect the two-run lead and then completely fell apart in extra innings.Red Sox rookie Blake Swihart led off the 10th with an inside-the-park home run. Boston, visiting the Mets for the first time since 2001, scored three times in the 10th.Swihart led off with a drive that appeared to clear the center field wall and bounce back into play, but the ball was ruled in play.There was no indication from the umpires that it was a home run, and the ball caromed back past center fielder Juan Lagares.“I don’t think he planned on an inside-the-park home run,” Boston interim manager Torey Lovullo said. “But we run hard until our base coaches stop our guys and he did exactly what he was supposed to do.”Lovullo indicated that the team planned on having the play reviewed if Swihart had not crossed the plate.The Mets rallied in the bottom half when reliever Junichi Tazawa walked four straight batters with two outs to force home a run. Craig Breslow replaced Tazawa and retired Yoenis Cespedes with the bases loaded on a fly ball for his first save.Tommy Layne (1-1) got the win. Carlos Torres (5-6) took the loss.“My job is to go out there and get outs,” Torres said. “I didn’t do that today, and that’s all that really matters at the end of the day.”Josh Rutledge added a sacrifice fly and Xander Bogaerts had an RBI double later in the 10th.After Harvey came out of the game, Collins turned to Logan Verrett.Verrett made the spot start in Colorado in Harvey’s turn in the rotation. He was successful in the start but was not as sharp this time.David Ortiz and Jackie Bradley Jr. homered off Verrett in a three-run seventh.Travis d’Arnaud and Michael Cuddyer each had RBI singles for New York, which had scored 73 runs during its winning streak — a team record for a seven-game span.Mets captain David Wright went 2-for-5 in his first game at Citi Field since April. He returned from a long stint on the disabled list earlier in the week during a sweep in Philadelphia.The crowd gave Wright a standing ovation when he came to bat for the first time. Boston rookie Henry Owens gave up one earned run in five innings.TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Odom Drug Overdose Seen

first_imgLOS ANGELES — Lamar Odom is believed to have overdosed on cocaine and other drugs before he was found unconscious in a Nevada brothel, according to search warrant records.The court document includes testimony to a Nevada state judge from Michael Eisenloffel, a Nye County sheriff’s detective, on Oct. 13 after the former NBA star was found at the Love Ranch in Crystal.“I believe that Mr. Odom may be — or may have been — under the influence of a controlled substance,” Eisenloffel told Fifth Judicial District Judge Robert Lane.The document was obtained Oct. 22 by The Associated Press.Odom was hospitalized in Las Vegas and transferred to Los Angeles, where his family said he was undergoing therapy and is showing improvement.“He is beginning to gradually flourish both mentally and physically,” said a statement from Alvina Alston, publicist for Odom’s aunt JaNean Mercer. “His use of speech has increased, and he’s more cognitively responsive.”Alston called Odom’s therapy regimen “aggressive” but did not elaborate.On Oct. 21, Odom and reality star Khloe Kardashian filed a court petition dismissing a divorce filing from December 2013. A clerk granted the request in such a way that the divorce papers can be refiled at a later date.Kardashian has been by Odom’s side since he was found in extremely critical condition at the brothel.Brothel officials have said workers saw Odom drink alcohol and take supplements sold as “herbal Viagra” but no employees saw him take illegal drugs.The Food and Drug Administration issued a warning in 2013 against one brand of supplement they said he took, Reload, after it was found to contain sildenafil, the active ingredient in prescription Viagra.A six-page transcript of the detective’s request for the search warrant said Odom was seen by witnesses and on security video taking an unidentified pill from an unmarked plastic bag in his pocket, and two prostitutes told police they had “vague knowledge” that Odom was using illicit narcotics.The court document said the women told police they believed Odom snorted cocaine in a bathroom while they were in the adjacent bedroom.Love Ranch owner Dennis Hof has said Odom arrived Oct. 10 for a four-day stay and spent $75,000 on two women who accompanied him in a VIP suite.The Nevada judge issued a search warrant authorizing police to obtain a blood sample from Odom after he was taken to the Las Vegas hospital but test results are pending.Authorities have not ruled out the possibility of taking action against the brothel or Odom.Odom spent most of his 14-year NBA career in Los Angeles with the Lakers and Clippers.___By Christopher Weber. AP Entertainment Writer Anthony McCartney in Los Angeles and writer Sally Ho in Las Vegas contributed TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

NFL Training Camp in Egypt

first_imgTweetPinShare0 Shares CAIRO — American football has made it all the way to the Giza Pyramids.A nonprofit group called American Football Without Barriers brought a slew of current and former NFL players to Egypt this week to promote the game while helping educate disadvantaged children and encourage them to live healthy lifestyles.The group was founded by New York Jets offensive lineman Breno Giacomini, Cleveland Browns tight end Gary Barnidge and Ahmed Awadallah, a friend who was born and raised in Egypt. It has previously held training camps in China, Brazil and Turkey.“We go to different countries where football is blossoming, and we use it as an opportunity to teach kids football, spread football,” said Browns safety Johnson Bademosi, part of the dozen players in Cairo for the training camp.“It’s kind of a humanitarian trip as well. We try to give back and try to engage with the community as much as we can.”The group has visited a school and a children’s cancer hospital, and is holding three days of free camps — basic, junior and advanced levels — for players aged 14-25, as well as a coaching clinic led by Giacomini.The players also visited the Pyramids, bringing a football with them to toss around.While soccer is Egypt’s biggest sport, and squash the one it dominates, American football is on the up, the group says, with about 700 players from the Middle East attending the training camp held at German University in Cairo.Other players on the trip include the recently retired Marshawn Lynch, Pittsburgh Steelers running back DeAngelo Williams, Houston Texans offensive lineman Oday Aboushi and Miami Dolphins tight end Jordan Cameron.“The journey in Egypt means a lot to me,” Aboushi said. “Being Arab myself, being from Palestine, this is an extension of my people, this is my religion for the most part.”Awadallah, a college classmate of Barnidge and Giacomini and now an engineer, had wanted to take the program to Egypt in 2013, but political problems in the country prevented the visit.last_img read more