Delhi Capitals is set to conduct the DC Junior Cricket League between 21 February to 06 March 2021, across three venues in Delhi NCR. The 40-overs-a-side tournament, which is open to players in the Under 14 age group, will feature the region’s top 16 academies.
“The U-14 age group is a crucial one for any cricketer aspiring to play the sport professionally, but at the moment, it’s a bit unstructured, and there are not too many opportunities,” said Jagrit Anand, Head of DC Academies, on the occasion. “Our aim is to provide children in this age group a solid platform to showcase their talent.”
Hitkary Pharmacy, makers of sherbets and honey, has been roped in as title sponsors for the tournament. “At Hitkary, we believe in spreading good health and wellness through our products, and hence it made perfect sense for us to associate with a tournament that involves children, in whom it is crucial to inculcate healthy habits, for a healthy future,” said Nitin Malhotra, CEO, Hitkary Pharmacy.
The teams will be divided into four pools for the tournament. Each team will play 3 league matches, following which there will be quarter finals, semi final and a final. DC Academies have resumed coaching in all three venues this year, after a hiatus owing to the global pandemic.
The team registrations for the DC Junior Cricket League 2021 are now open. Interested teams can write in to [email protected] for more details on the tournament.
Pranavi Urs, who has a win and a runner-up finish in the two starts in 2021, will start as a big favourite in the third leg at the Bombay Presidency Golf Club on Wednesday.
Pranavi, runner-up behind Ridhima Dilawari in the opening leg and then winner in the second leg last month, will lead a big field that includes LET winner Diksha Dagar, who plays her first event of 2021.
This is the third leg of the Hero WPGT Tour with a purse of Rs. 10 lakhs and the total field is 37, the highest ever in its history, indicating the growing strength of professional women golfers in India. It includes six amateurs.
Ridhima is also in the fray, as is Amandeep Drall, who still leads the combined 2020-21 Hero Order of Merit. Amandeep, who won the eighth leg of the 2020 season and then finished runner-up in the ninth and last leg of 2020, has seen a dip in form. She was ninth in both first and second legs of 2021 last month, so she will be hoping to get back to the form that has seen her get to the top of the Hero Order of Merit.
The Bakshi sisters, Hitaashee, who was second in the second leg, and Jahanvi will also put forward a strong claim, while seasoned Vani Kapoor, winless for a long time, and Amandeep Drall are also in the field.
Astha Madan, who played a few LET events last year, and past winners Gauri Karhade and Neha Tripathi also feature in the field.
Of the six amateurs in the field, namely Avani Prashanth, Khushi Hooda, Nayanika Sanga, Nishna Patel, Sneha Singh and Vidhatri Urs, Sneha has already tasted victory on the pro Tour while still an amateur.
Tee times for the first round of the third leg of the Hero WPGT at TNGF Bombay Presidency Golf Club, Mumbai:
8:00 AM : Geetika Ahuja; Ishvari Prasanna;
8:10 AM : Shweta Mansingh; Marshneil Prasad;
8:20 AM : Seher Atwal; Lakhmehar Pardesi; Khushi Hooda (A);
8:30 AM : Avani Prashanth (A); Diksha Dagar; Ananya Datar;
8:40 AM : Vani Kapoor; Vidhatri Urs (A); Rhea Jha;
9:05 AM : Sneha Singh (A); Astha Madan; Shriya Vivek;
9:15 AM : Pranavi Urs; Shagun Narain; Ayesha Kapur;
9:25 AM : Nayanika Sanga (A); Amandeep Drall; Trimann Saluja;
9:40 AM : Asmitha Sathish; Jyotsana Singh; Saaniya Sharma;
9:50 AM : Nishna Patel (A); Khushi Khanijau; Durga Nittur;
10:00 AM : Jahanvi Bakshi; Oviya Reddi; Neha Tripathi;
10:10 AM : Ridhima Dilawari; Hitaashee Bakshi; Gauri Karhade.
With inputs from www.golfxyz.in
Indian Women’s Hockey team defender Gurjit Kaur reflected on her team’s recent tour of Argentina, their first assignment in a year, which concluded earlier this month. Despite not registering a win on the tour, the Rani-led Indians went toe-to-toe against the world no 2 side. Gurjit thinks the hard-fought series made her a better player.
“It felt great to be back on the field after one whole year. I am happy with my performances too, having faced a top side,” Gurjit said. “We competed well against them. If you compare our performances over the last three-four years, the team has vastly improved, and that bodes well for us going into future tournaments,” she added.
Getting used to the rigours of bubble life comes with its own set of challenges. The 25-year-old thanked Hockey India and Sports Authority of India for helping the players acclimatize to their new environment.
“Of course, it was tough to get back to a competitive arena during the early part of the tour. But, I feel, as a team we adapted quickly. It is only natural to feel a little rusty when you are away from a competitive environment or so long,” Gurjit said. “Life inside the bubble wasn’t easy but thanks to SAI and Hockey India, all the arrangements were in place.”
The Indian team were defeated 2-3 and 0-2 by the senior Argentina side. However, the visitors ended on a happy note, drawing 1-1 against Las Leonas in the final game of the tour. Rani and Co also faced Argentina’s junior and B teams.
Gurjit is now looking ahead as the clock ticks down towards the 2021 Olympics. “Personally, I am satisfied with my performances. I will be sitting down with my Coaches to assess areas where I can still improve,” she said.
“With the Olympics coming up, this was a good test for us. We are preparing well for Tokyo and will continue to get better,” Gurjit signed off.