London: Indian ace spinner Harbhajan Singh is now a dejected man as he was drppped out of the Indian team. However he stayed back in England as his girl friend Geeta Basra joined him there and is reported to be consoling him.

Stories about the love between Basra and Harbhajan have been all over the media in the recent times. Though the actress has not made it big in the films, she has been constantly in the news because of her intimacy with the cricket star. It was reported in the media that Harbhajan has disappeared with Basra during a felicitation function for the Indian team in a five star hotel. He was found to be missing when the team members were called for a group photograph. It is said that the group photograph was delayed because of Harbhajan.


Hyderabad, July 25 (NSS): Lakshya-Flame supported Harika Dronavalli becomes the second Indian woman after Koneru Humpy to hold the title of a chess Grandmaster, following her fine performance at the 1st Hangzhou Women Grandmaster Chess Tournament 2011. Harika pocketed a total of 5.5 points, following 7 draws and 2 wins, to finish at a commendable 3rd position. Ten top women players competed in this round robin event.

            Harika had held double norms for Grandmaster and already had bagged the titles of woman Grandmaster and International Master previously. So, in a way, this feat was a natural progression.  Naturally ecstatic with the achievement, she said, “It’s been a dream coming true for me. I have been working hard to achieve this since the past few years and was confident getting into this tournament. I am naturally very happy. I am looking forward to the future tournaments and will continue working hard to be the World No.1. Also, I would like to thank Lakshya & Flame for lending me support when most needed. I am happy that I have reposed their faith in me”

Harika is one of the four chess players currently supported by Lakshya. Before setting out for the tournament, she had been at the Flame Campus in Pune to undergo special training at the Chess Camp by legendary GM Vladimirov, an initiative of Lakshya & Flame School. GM Vladimirov commented, “I congratulate Harika on this special achievement. There was never a doubt in my mind about her capability. I am sure she will continue this form and bring more laurels. I wish her the very best for the upcoming tournaments.”  GM Abhijit Kunte, the mentor for the chess vertical at Lakshya, said, “Harika has been in great form, following her fine performances at the Asian Individual Chess Championships & the South African Open. We were expecting a good result at this tournament too and are very pleased with her performance. At Lakshya, it’s our endeavor to address the need-gaps of our players and am happy to see that the efforts are helping our players in enhancing their performances. This feat augurs well for the sport of chess in our country and will encourage other fellow players. ”

A resident of Guntur, Andhra Pradeh, Harika had received the Arjuna Award for her excellence in the sport in the year 2007, following which she proved her caliber once again by winning the Girl’s title at the World Junior Chess Championship held at Turkey in the year 2008. She had recently won a Gold medal at the Asian Individual Woman Chess Championship 2011 and Silver in the Women’s category at the 2011 Commonwealth Championship held at South Africa. (NSS)

Hyderabad, July 24 (NSS): The Hyderabad Monsoon 2011 Races will commence from July 27 and conclude on October 24, 2011.  Actually, the races were scheduled to start on July 20.  But the events on July 20 and 21 were cancelled as the track was not conducive for racing in view of insufficient rainfall.

       This was announced by the Chairman of Hyderabad Race Club Mr R Surender Reddy, at a media meet here Saturday evening. He said that an amount of Rs.8,39, 92,000 in stake money and Trophies of value of Rs,26,20,000 are on offer during the season as against Rs.7,40,91,000 in Stake Money and Rs.23,29,000 towards the value of Trophies offered last year.

The prestigious races to be run during the Hyderabad Monsoon Races 2011 are: ‘The Nizam’s Gold Cup’ on August 14, 2011,   ‘The Andhra Pradesh Governor’s Cup’ on August 21,  ‘The Deccan Bookmakers Fillies Championship Stakes’ on August 28, ‘The Deccan Bookmakers Colts Championship Stakes’ on September 4, ‘The President of India Gold Cup’ and the HRC Golden Jubilee Commemoration Cup on September 18, ‘The AP Chief Minister’s Cup’ on September 25, ‘The Deccan Derby’ on October 2, The Melbourne Racing Club Trophy on October 3 and ‘The Golconda St. Leger’ on October 16.

This year also, the added money for the President of India Gold Cup (Grade I) is 2 Million Rupees.  Whereas, the added money for Deccan Derby (Grade I) is 3 Million Rupees, Mr. Surender Reddy said.

He said Hyderabad Race Club will be celebrating its Golden Jubilee this year and to commemorate the same, a sweepstakes race in the name of “The HRC Golden Jubilee Commemoration Cup” for 3 year old and upwards over a distance of 1600 meters has been framed on September 18 with a stake money of Rs. 1.5 million and trophy value of Rs. 1.50 lakhs.

Mr Reddy said that HRC gas opened an off Course Tote Cemtre at Kakinada on june 26 and they have recently received permission from the State Government for setting up off course Tote Centre at Rajahmundry.  Permission is awaited for Tote Centre at  Salarjung Colony, Hyderabad located between Tolichowki and Mehdipatnam. (NSS)


Hyderabad, July 23 (NSS): The 26th Laser National Sailing Championship 2011 will be held inHyderabadfor one week from Sunday onwards. So far 115 sailors have registered to take part in the first plastic free sailing championship being organized EME Sailing Association and the Secunderabad club, supported by the state government.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday morning, EME Sailing Association vice Commodore Maj Gen Amarjeet Singh said the participants in the event are growing year after year as the laser sailing sport is gaining popularity nationwide. Stating that the wind conditions are conducive over the inlandlakeHussainsagarfor the sport, he said the event gained popularity asHyderabadsailing week nationwide.

Secunderabad club vice president M Shashidhar said the competitions are being held in three categories, laser standard – in which 33 sailors are taking part, Laser Radial that sees participation of 50 sailors including 4 women and Laser 4.7 in which 32 sailors including 12 girls take part. On the occasion, several programmes including holding Sailing Coaching Camp, Rulers Seminar and Green Brigade Walk are being held during the Hyderabad Sailing Week.    (NSS)


Newly-elected President of the Mumbai Cricket Association, Union Minister for Science and Technology Vilasrao Deshmukh said that Sachin Tendulkar deserves to get Bharat Ratna and no one would object if the champion cricketer got the country’s highest civilian award.
“Sachin deserves Bharat Ratna. Being the president of Mumbai Cricket Association, I would talk to the Sports Minister, Home Minister and Prime Minister and request them to change the norms for the award to include sportspersons too in its category of recipients,” Deshmukh said.

Deshmukh chaired the first managing committee meeting of the MCA after his election to the President’s post at the biennial polls of the association held on July 15.

The former Maharashtra CM had vanquished former India captain Dilip Vengsarkar comfortably in a straight contest to succeed another politician, NCP leader Sharad Pawar, as the MCA President.