Off-spinners shine, Bayern are world champions and more8 min readReading Time: 6 minutes
Here is the round-up of all the action from the world of sports last week.
Ash wins it for India
After losing the first Test, India stormed back in the second match to level the series in Chennai. Rohit Sharma scored a century in the first innings to help India to a formidable total of 329 on a tricky playing surface.
R Ashwin starred with the ball, picking up yet another five-wicket haul and helped his team gain a first-innings lead of 195 runs.
On the third day, India were struggling at 106/6 when Ashwin joined hands with skipper Virat Kohli to strengthen India’s grip on the game. The all-rounder went on to score a century much to the delight of the home fans who were allowed inside a stadium for the first time since the COVID outbreak.
India set England an improbable target of 482 and duly bundled them out for 164 on the fourth day of the Test. Debutant Axar Patel was the wrecker-in-chief this time around and picked up a fifer.
Understrength Windies whitewash Bangladesh
Kraigg Brathwaite’s team from the Carribean pulled the rabbit out of the hat by beating Bangladesh on their own turf and claimed a Test series win.
After Kyle Mayers’ heroics in the first Test, the Windies relied on some disciplined batting and accurate bowling to defeat the home team. They posted 409 runs and secured a lead of 113 runs. Bangladesh did well to bounce back and bowl the visitors for a meagre 117 in the third innings of the game.
However, the Tigers fell short by 17 runs on the final day of the Test. Off-spinner Rahkeem Cornwall was named the Player of the Match for picking up nine wickets in the game.
Pakistan claim T20I series win
Pakistan beat South Africa in the final T20I to lift the trophy after a closely contested series.
With the series level at one win apiece, Pakistan opted to field in the decider. South Africa scored 164 for 8 thanks to a quickfire knock of 85*(45) from David Miller.
The home team chased down the total with eight deliveries and four wickets to spare despite a stutter in the middle overs.
Pakistan had earlier beaten the Proteas to win the Test series 2-0.
Gundogan’s double sinks Spurs
Manchester City have conceded one goal in over 12 hours of Premier League football and they are well on their way to yet another Premier League title.
Pep Guardiola’s team thrashed Tottenham 3-0 to extend their lead to seven points at the top with a game in hand. Ilkay Gundogan scored yet another brace, picking up four goals in two games.
Liverpool lost their third consecutive Premier League game, this time away to Leicester. A couple of bad goalkeeping errors from Brazilian keep Alisson Becker saw the Reds lose 3-1 and slip to sixth in the table.
Manchester United had to settle for a point against West Brom. They conceded a goal in the opening two minutes of the game but Bruno Fernandes equalized with an improvised finish just before the break. However, neither team was able to find the winner in the second half.
Spezia shock AC Milan
The newly-promoted team, Spezia shocked title contenders AC Milan with a dominant display in a 2-0 victory last weekend. They scored twice through Giulio Maggiore and Simone Bastoni, both in the second half, to seal the win.
Spezia moved up to 14th in the standings on 24 points, while Milan lost the top spot to rivals Inter Milan, who beat Lazio.
Next Sunday’s Milan derby will be the first time in eleven years that both teams will occupy the top two positions in Serie A going into their second and final league meeting of the season.
World Champions Bayern Munich
Bayern Munich became the second European club to win and hold all 6 available major titles at the same time – FIFA Club World Cup, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, Domestic League (Bundesliga), Domestic Cup (DFB Pokal), Domestic SC) after Barcelona in 2009.
This was their second FIFA Club World Cup title and first since 2013.
Fullback Benjamin Pavard scored the winner in minute 59 in the final against Mexican team Tigres UANL.
Karatsev creates history
Twenty seven-year-old Russian Tennis player Aslan Karatsev became the first man in the open era (in 53 years) to reach the semi-finals of a Grand Slam Event on Debut.
He defeated an injured 18th-seeded Grigor Dimitrov 2-6, 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 to reach the semis of Australian Open 2021.
Osaka to meet Serena in the semifinal
World number three Naomi Osaka eased past Hsieh Su-wei in straight sets. The Japanese three-time Grand Slam champion overcame her Taiwanese opponent 6-2, 6-2 in an all-Asian quarter-final.
She will face Serena Williams next, who defeated Simona Halep 6-3 6-3.
NASCAR’s first female Arab-American driver makes Daytona debut
Twenty one-year-old Toni Breidinger made history as the first Arab-American female driver to compete in a NASCAR national series. She made her debut at Daytona International Speedway over the weekend.
Driving in the 2021 ARCA Menards Series season-opener in Daytona, Florida, she was placed 18th.
Brehanna Daniels, Breanna O’Leary and Dalanda Ouendeno are three other women who have made NASCAR history at Daytona.
Michael McDowell claimed the victory at Daytona 500 after a last-lap wreck involving many cars. The race was stopped by rain for almost six hours and came to finish after nine hours.
Ben Simmons’ breaks record with 42 points
Ben Simmons shot the most points by an Australian in an NBA game during Philadelphia Sixers’ loss against Utah Jazz. He finished with 42 points and 12 assists. Despite his stellar performance, the Sixers were beaten 134-123.
It was the first 40-point double-double, with assists, by a Sixer since Allen Iverson in 2006.
Simmons’ haul beat the previous best by an Australian in the NBA – 37-points scored by Aron Baynes for Phoenix last season.
This was the eighth straight win for Utah Jazz. Jordan Clarkson had a good game for them, finishing with 40 points.
Denver Nuggets snap Lakers’ streak
A seven-game winning run came to a grinding halt as LA Lakers succumbed to a humbling defeat in the hands of title rivals Denver Nuggets.
Nikola Jokic starred with his sixth triple-double, finishing with 23 points, 16 rebounds, and 10 assists.
Despite LeBron James’ 22 points and 10 rebounds, the Lakers couldn’t fight back. The seemingly bigger disappointment from the game was that Anthony Davis left the game in the first half with an apparent Achilles’ injury and didn’t return.
Curry helps GSW beat Cavs
Stephen Curry scored 36 points in 30 minutes and Draymond Green raked up 16 assists to lift the Golden State Warriors to a victory over Cleveland in San Francisco.
It was his 10th straight game with at least 27 points as he became the first guard since Michael Jordan (1995-96) with at least 25 points and 50 percent shooting in 10 straight games.
Well, that’s all for this week, folks. Let the games continue, until next week!
Author’s Note: Adithya G is a freelance writer who is passionate about sports.
(Out Actioned is a weekly sports bulletin)