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Showing posts from December, 2020

India Hit Back To Crush Australia In Melbourne By 8 Wickets, Level Test Series 1-1!

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India have come back in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy Test Series with a resounding victory in the second test in Melbourne today, defeating Australia by 8 wickets. A sweet revenge for the debacle in Adelaide, striking back with the same victory margin. But for the specter of 36-all-out the visitors could perhaps have won the first test too. And, the specter loomed large again today when two Indian wickets fell for 19, chasing a paltry victory target of 70 runs. Fortunately, the Starc-Cummins-Hazelwood threat did not become a reality again as captain Ajinkya Rahane, the hero and the player-of-the-match, joined debutant opener Shubman Gill who continued to be confident and as solid as in the first innings. The victory came in the 16 th over and the Test Series is now one-all with two tests to follow.   We mentioned in our last post on cricket that the top-form Indian bowlers just needed that much support from the batsmen to not allow the opposition snatch a sudden-death victory. Rahan

Christmas, NY Day And The Mutant Coronavirus: Just Pray!

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A few vaccines had arrived and vaccination started in several countries including the US and in Europe with many others including India booking millions of doses; however, an incredible feat of humankind notwithstanding the cheer was short-lived as a mutant variant of SARS-CoV-2 had started rampaging through United Kingdom, parts of other European countries and South Africa, and to some extent Australia. It is common knowledge that any virus surely undergoes mutation over time, putting up many variants or strains to challenge the human wisdom and efforts. In fact, about 17 strains of the novel Coronavirus or COVID-19 have already been detected in the process of fighting it, and this particular variant noticed in UK was also detected in September this year. But the problem is that, this particular mutant has started spreading at spectacular speed almost choking the health facilities of UK in particular. The UK government had declared that this virus is about 70% more contagious than the

India Cross 10 Million Or 1 Crore COVID-19 Cases As Vaccination Becomes A Reality!

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Photo: expresspharma.in This time India took nearly a month to add another million new cases compared to 22 days for the previous increase as India cross 10 million or 1 crore COVID-19 cases today. This means that the pandemic curve in the country has started flattening with daily additions of new cases reduced to 22000-30000 in the last few days. More promisingly, the recovery rate has crossed 95% with active cases now only just above 3,00,000. However, the daily deaths continue to remain above 300 with Maharashtra contributing the largest share, followed by West Bengal, Delhi, Kerala, Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. States like Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu still remain as regions of some concern.   Total deaths in the country have reached 145,316 now, and possible vaccination from early next year comes as the major factor of optimism to put the final check on more fatalities. There are three vaccines, namely Covishield, Covax

Border-Gavaskar Trophy: Australia Destroy India Batting In Adelaide Pink-Ball Test To Go 1-0 Up!

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Ashwin's Laugh of  Frustration? Australia have won the first Test of the Border-Gavaskar Series defeating India by 8 wickets inside three days in Adelaide which had been the first ever d/n pink-ball match between the two teams, and the hosts lead the series 1-0 with the second Test starting on the Boxing day, that is from the 26 th of December in Melbourne.   Last night at stumps it had been advantage India with a lead of 53 runs that seemed to be crucial and 9/1 as the night watchman Jasprit Bumrah saw off the day successfully. A very exciting third day’s play was anticipated with the Indian batting depth promising to score sufficient runs to corner the hosts who would be batting last. However, the very first hour of the ‘morning’ session destroyed India batting thoroughly as the visitors ended up with the their lowest ever test score of an unbelievable 36, the previous lowest being 42 against England in England in 1974. It was not simply that the Aussie pacers bowled incredi

The Life Shiner!

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My most used pair of shoes needed a polish very badly. The shoe-color container dried up long back. In the prolonged lockdown period, it was not possible to visit a shoe store and could not order online as well as it was not an essential item. Even after the unlock had gradually widened I didn’t think of venturing out due to the transport hassles. Instead, I started looking for a shoe-shiner shop on my customary evening walks, but found that most of those shops were yet to reopen. Even that lone shoe-polish guy sitting on the roadside with a box was missing.   On my walk that evening I changed my normal route, and started looking closely around as I walked on. Luckily, on a solitary corner of a by-lane that branched off to my left from the main road I found a shoe-shiner shop. I marched towards it feeling like a victorious commander. But as I neared my target I had to stop on my tracks. A lady, well clad in ordinary clothes, was sitting there bent over something that she seemed to

Indian Farmers’ Crisis: Bharat Bandh Tomorrow!

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It is extremely ironical that the only Indian sector largely unaffected by the COVID-19 pandemic should get embroiled in a seemingly endless crisis. The Farmers’ agitation, some people detest calling it that, has entered the 12 th day with the farmers still camping in the Delhi-Haryana border, braving the unusually cold winter this time and blocking most of the highways leading to the capital. Three rounds of talks with the Government of India have failed to yield solutions that the farmers wanted, and the fourth round of talks has been scheduled on December 9. With the Union Agriculture minister still adhering to the government line of argument that the reforms as promised by the Farm Laws would be beneficial for the farmers in the long run, the distressed and tired farmers want a repeal of the laws, and demand an answer of ‘yes or no’ to that. Therefore, despite the government’s promise of presenting a set of concrete proposals on the 9 th the farmers are going ahead with their pla

India Beat Australia In Sydney Thriller To Win Dettol T20I Series At 2-0!

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Finally in Sydney, India has tasted victory beating Australia by 6 wickets in the second T20 international match today, thus winning the three-match Dettol T20I Series with an unassailable 2-0 lead. Hardik Pandya became the man of the moment with his explosive winning innings of 42 off 22 balls, supported ably by Shikhar Dhawan (52), KL Rahul (30) and Virat Kohli (40). Like Australia avenged their home ODI Series loss in 2018-19 by overwhelming India in the Dettol ODI Series 2-1, India have now taken sweet revenge of their T20I Series loss in the 2018-19 tour. India had earlier won the first T20I match in Canberra by 11 runs, and today’s victory marks their third consecutive win in India Tour of Australia 2020-21. This win also marks India’s 10 th consecutive win in international T20 matches.   Kohli won the toss, and took a tricky decision by inviting the hosts to bat first. Australia raced towards a huge score from the word go with stand-in captain Wade (in absence of injured Fi

COVID-19 Vs Vaccines: Contest Of The Millennium?

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Photo: bbc.com The decisive (or is it?) war against the COVID-19 pandemic has broken out with vaccines arriving on the scene to combat the deadly virus about which humankind knew nothing as late as January-February 2020. United Kingdom as we mentioned in an earlier post became the first country to officially approve a vaccine with Bahrain joining in too as per latest news reports. The regulatory authority of UK approved Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for emergency use authorization last week, and vaccination is to start in the country from Tuesday, the 8 th of December 2020. Meanwhile Russia has already started mass vaccination from today with the first registered vaccine of the world, Sputnik V. The US FDA is set to give approval anytime now to Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines. All of these three vaccines have shown efficacy of over 90% for all age groups.   Amid the spree of advance booking by various countries worldwide Pfizer-BioNTech has applied to the Indian regulator DCGI (Dru

India Win Canberra ODI: No International Cricket Series Should Immediately Follow The IPL!

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Even though the Indian Premiere League (IPL) is basically a T20 club-cricket tournament with multinational cricketers, the stakes involved in the tournament are immense. There is the great promise of moolah for every stakeholder: from the richest cricket board of the world BCCI to the national cricket icons or superstars, little-known domestic cricketers and international cricket stars. Every club or franchise is sort of produced by a business group or a rich investor, and all of the investors not only want their money back, but also shares of the net profits. The fantastic popularity that the IPL enjoys brings in the advertisers and commercial sponsors/co-sponsors. So, for obvious reasons nobody would ever like to give up on this annual bonanza, at any cost. No doubt, the BCCI had been desperate to organize IPL-2020 despite the pandemic, and finally grabbed the anticipated slot that was vacated by the ICC as the Cricket T20 World Cup-2020 could not be held. Not to speak of the other b

COVID-19 Vaccine News: Arrival Before Time?

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  As per the reports available then we had maintained in our earlier post that the leading COVID-19 vaccine of the world Pfizer-BioNTech with a claimed efficacy of 95% was going to apply for Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by mid-December and Moderna vaccine a few days later. However, with the rush for the first usable vaccine and the people of the worst-hit USA desperate for a vaccine, Pfizer-BioNTech had already applied for EUA with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in US, and following it up also applied for the European regulator, European Medicines Agency (EMA). In fact, United Kingdom has already placed orders for 40 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech and it is likely to give approval in a matter of days now in which case UK could be the very first country in the world to officially approve a COVID-19 vaccine. The FDA is likely to examine Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine data by 10 th December.   Moderna, the second leading vaccine being produced in the US, had said that it wou