THRISSUR l MONDAY l AUGUST 26, 2019 l `7.00 l PAGES 30 l CITY EDITION OKUHARA NO MATCH FOR SINDHU IN WORLDS FINAL Hyderabadi shuttler exorcises ghosts of 2017 with a 21-7, 21-7 obliteration of the Japanese in this edition’s summit clash The 2017 final between the two shuttlers was a last-woman-standing slugfest which was eventually won by Okuhara. But Sindhu flipped the narrative on its head on Sunday. She used her height and reach to devastating effect, targetting Okuhara’s body with booming smashes which could only be parried into the net or the ground BHARAT’S RATNA The on-court vivisection of Japanese World No 4 for a record achievement heralds a new dawn for both Sindhu and the nation on the international badminton landscape S W A R O O P S W A M I N AT H A N @ Chennai THIRTY EIGHT minutes of mayhem, destruction, and sheer, unbridled power in its most visceral form. Thirty eight minutes of PV Sindhu reminding the world why she considers BWF World Championships her playground. Thirty-eight minutes of Sindhu’s greatest hits being played on a loop as she scripted history by becoming the first Indian world champion in the sport. It was so one-sided — the final scoreline of 21-7, 21-7 flattered the opposition — that Sindhu could have played the majority of the final with one hand tied behind her back. Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara, World No 4 with a medal haul to rival the World No 5, did not stand a chance. By the time she knew what hit her, Sindhu was home, shedding tears of joy while clutching her gold medal on the top step of the podium. If the 2017 final between these two went down in history because of the brilliance and staying powers of both (it finished 21-19, 20-22, 22-20 in Okuhara’s favour), this will be remembered for the way Sindhu dismantled the 2016 Olympic bronze medallist. By the end, Okuhara was begging to be put down. The match ended the only way it could: Okuhara on all fours, Sindhu standing tall. Her constant peppering of Okuhara’s body with smashes was reminiscent of a fast-bowler torturing a tail-ender with chin music. And the way she moved the Japanese from flank to flank was like watching a master puppeteer at work. What really did work in the Indian’s favour was her ability to keep plugging away without taking her foot off the gas. She did not allow Okuhara to breathe. A prime example of that was the way she reacted whenever the Asian Games gold medallist committed an unforced error. She would rush to the net, pick the shuttle and be ready to serve. In the 2017 and 2018 finals, she would let her opponents come up to the net and send the shuttle to her side of the court — a common etiquette of the sport. Another slight tweak was her ability to shorten points. Whenever rallies were threatening to develop, she used her height to snufff them out. Significantly, not a single rally went beyond 30 shots, a far cry from the 73-shot one these two played in the 2017 final. In all, they played 56 rallies, with Sindhu winning 42. Each winner resembled a dagger piercing Okuhara’s usually resolute defense. And the last, a smash to the left of Okuhara that made her fall to her knees, signalled the dawn of a new era. It’s been a long time coming. B M Kutty, Kerala Marxist-turned Pak politician, passes away EC to hold byelection in Pala alone; CPM upset S O V I V I D YA D H A R A N @ T’Puram THE SCHEDULE E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @Malappuram FOR a state which was gearing up for bypoll in as many as six assembly constituencies, the Election Commission’s (EC) decision to conduct the voting only in Pala, on September 23, did come as a surprise. The poll panel says it has gone by the rule book in the case of Pala. On October 9, six months would have elapsed since the assembly seat fell vacant following the death of K M Mani. As per rules, the poll panel has to hold by-election within six months of an assembly seat falling vacant. Going by that logic, why was Manjeshwaram assembly seat in Kasaragod left out? The constituency has remained unrepresented for nearly a year, since the death of MLA P B Abdul Razak. Chief Electoral Officer, Kerala, Teeka Ram Meena explained. “Unlike other constituencies, the 2016 election in Manjeshwaram was caught in a legal tangle. It was only last month that the case was closed by the High Court. Technically the , seat can be considered vacant only August 28 Election notification to be issued September 4 Last date for filing nominations September 5 Scrutiny of nominations September 7 Last date for withdrawal of nominations BIYYATHHIL Mohiuddin Kutty, popularly known as B M Kutty and BKM, a Pakistani politician from Tirur, Kerala, passed away in Karachi in the early hours of Sunday. He was 90. He had migrated from Kerala to Pakistan in 1947 when he was 19. He B M Kutty was influenced by the Left movement in Kerala. He began his political life as a member of the Kerala Students Federation in the 1940s. After finishing his college education, he travelled to Khokhrapar -- a border town situated in Tharparkar district of Sindh province in Pakistan. Later, he started his life in Pakistan as a muhajir (a Muslim immigrant). He associated himself with Azad Pakistan Party in Lahore between 1950 and 1957 and later with Pakistan Awami League in Kara● More on P4 chi. September 23 Polling September 27 Counting of votes after the election case is closed. So the Election Commission has five more months left to conduct election in Manjeshwaram, which is not the case in Pala,” he told Express. Besides Pala and Manjeshwaram, other constituencies where bypoll is slated to be held are Vattiyoorkavu, Konni, Aroor and Ernakulam. The MLAs in these constituencies had vacated their seats after winning the Lok Sabha election. According to EC sources, bypoll in these seats, as well as Manjeshwaram, would be ● More on P5 held in November. No terror links; youth released after quizzing LEFT IS RIGHT Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan having a word with veteran CPM leader M M Lawrence during the latter’s 90th birthday celebrations at the Ernakulam Town Hall on Sunday. Lawrence, a former trade union leader, has always remained a true Left politician. The CM recognised his credentials by saying he has always been living in the minds of the public | A SANESH E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Kochi AFTER a 26-hour-long interrogation, Abdul Khader Raheem, 39, the Kodungallur native whom the city police arrested suspecting terror links, was released on Sunday evening. “The investigators didn’t receive any clue substantiating the suspected terror links of the arrested and hence he was released,” said an officer. According to the Ernakulam Central Police, the officers with the Q branch of Tamil Nadu Police and various central agencies also subjected him to questioning, which ended ● More on P6 by 5.30 pm on Sunday . JACOBITE VS ORTHODOX Tired of Church tussle, kin give body to hosp A N U J A S U S A N V A R G H E S E @ Kochi TIRED of having witnessed several fights between the two warring Malankara Church factions in which even the dead are not spared, a Jacobite family here on Saturday handed over the mortal remains of their beloved to a medical college. The family members took the decision after the Orthodox faction, which controls the St John’s Church, Kanniattunirappu, Er nakulam, where the burial was to be held, re- fused to allow a Jacobite priest from conducting funeral prayers as per family’s wishes, according to church vicar Fr Jibi Echikkottil. It was on Friday that Sara Varkey , 86, a member of St John’s Church, breathed her last at her residence in Vandipetta near Tripunithura on Friday . “As a member of the Church, eve- 1 DOMINANT FROM START TO END ryone will desire for a burial as per the Church order in their family grave. The family desired the burial rituals to be conducted by Jacobite priests, but the Orthodox faction didn’t allow it. To avoid a tense situation, the family decided to hand over the body to the Ayurveda Medical College, Tripunithura,” said Fr ● More on P6 Jibi. The family desired the burial rituals to be conducted by Jacobite priests, but the Orthodox faction didn’t allow it. To avoid a tense situation, the family decided to hand over the body to the Ayurveda Medical College, Tripunithura — A family member SINDHU IS THE FIRST INDIA SHUTTLER TO WIN GOLD AT THE WORLDS P V Sindhu poses with the gold medal after winning the BWF World Championships, in Basel, Switzerland, on Sunday | AFP I dedicate this medal to my mother it is her birthday. A big thanks to my coach Gopichand and Kim Ji Hyun. — P V Sindhu, World No 5 NO EXPECTATIONS BUT GOLDEN TURN E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Chennai WHEN the Indian contingent embarked for Basel, not many would have wagered that they would come back with two medals. Only PV Sindhu, Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth had made it to the final of a major event this year. None had won one. Injuries to key names had darkened a 2019, with only a Chirag Shetty-Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-sized silver lining to show. In stark contrast to the previous editions, India’s shuttlers were entering the Worlds as underdogs. But 38 minutes of utter dominance from a young prodigy laid rest to all that. Congratulations to @Pvsindhu1 for the first ever world championships gold medal from India. Saina Nehwal, World No 8 Amazing performance, @ Pvsindhu1! Congratulations on becoming the 1st ever to win the BWF World Championships! You have made India proud, yet again. Sachin Tendulkar, India cricket great The stupendously talented @Pvsindhu1 makes India proud again! Congratulations to her for winning the Gold at the BWF World Championships. P V Sindhu’s success will inspire generations of players. Narendra Modi, India Prime Minister EXPRESS READ WITH THIS ISSUE THE ESSENTIAL CAMPUS DIGEST YOUR LIFE COACH 30 PAGES, INCLUDING 16 OF EDEX (TABLOID) Flood: Rahul seeks setting up of single-window system Chennithala denounces Tharoor’s praise of Prime Minister Modi New Delhi: Congress leader and Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi has written to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, seeking setting up of a single-window system for reissuance of documents lost or damaged during the recent devastating floods in the state. T’Puram: The controversy over Congress leader Shashi Tharoor’s recent statement backing PM Narendra Modi has refused to die down. Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala joined issue against Tharoor and denounced any attempts to extol Modi. P6
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