CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOgGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI ■ ■ kochi l monday l may 16, 2022 l `9.00 l PAGES 12 l late city EDITION lakshya sen The young star handed India 1-0 lead after beating world No 5 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting in a gruelling three games 8-21 21-17 21-16 SatwiksairaJ rankireddy and chirag shetty The experienced player controlled the game to beat Asian Games gold medallist Jonatan Christie 21-15 23-21 to give India victory Thomas arrives in shuttle S w a r o o p S w a m i n at h a n @ Chennai The Impact Arena in Bangkok has played host to some of the biggest personalities and bands in the world of music. Think Roger Waters, Coldplay, Beyonce, BTS and Britney Spears. On Sunday it , was jiving, heaving and grooving to the humble dhol. While the Indian fans in the stands were cranking up the noise in the arena, the Indian players tasked with rewriting history went about it in a calm, unhurried manner. When the weight of 73-years of history finally lifted at about 3.15 PM IST on Sunday it had a certain , authority to it. Kidambi Srikanth, who had been invincible all week, The depth Kidambi Srikanth Rankireddy and Chirag were in their immaculate best during the doubles match against the experienced pair of Mohammad Ahsan and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo, beating them 18-21 23-21 21-19. They saved four match points in the second game before clinching the third 21-19. Gave India 2-0 advantage before second singles match stretched his record to 6-0. By the time he saw off Indonesia’s Jonatan Christie in str ght games and ai threw his racquet on the green turf before being enveloped by his onrushing teammates, the story had already started to sink in. “India are Thomas Cup champions for the first time ever”. Of course, like every story th , e r are multiple protagonists who e made this dream a reality Laksh . ya Sen who took down Olympic bro ze medallist Anthony Gintn ing on the first match on Sunday . HS Prannoy a controversial direct , selection that set the tongues wagging even before the team had bo o ed their flight to the Thai capit k a , keeping his cool on multiple l occ sions. Srikanth himself br a in g ng his zen-like focus ga after i me ga e, match after match while m qu etly guiding the side’s many i young players. The doubles st rs, a Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Ch i ag Shetty who kept chipping aw r , ay even when it looked the effort wasn’t translating into re ults. s The biggest factor, though, was the side’s mentality Heads never . dropped, shoulders never drooped and the belief never wavered as all of them embraced all of sport’s only true currency Giving up was . not an option. In modern sporting parlance, it’s known as ‘mamba mentality’ and that’s what this team embraced throughout the week. The proof of this is in the pudding. Lakshya suffering from food poisoning yet answering the call of duty on the very first day of the tournament and saving his best for last. This team lost the opening singles rubber on backto-back days in the quarterfinals and semifinals. This team won a deciding rubber twice on back-toback days against Malaysia and Denmark to enter the final. This side was 21 points away from not qualifying for the final. In the end, though, this side became only the second in the meet’s history to win the event after failing to top the group phase. Mentality monsters from start to finish in the backdrop of dhols. Full coverage: P11 A jubilant Indian team mobs Kidambi Srikanth who won the third match against Indonesia to seal the gold in Thomas Cup in Bangkok | AP Behind the scenes of champions Bonding exercise Triumph of the collective The lead players were very secure about their place in the side. Coach U Vimal Kumar spoke about this in the postmatch conference and it was in evidence when the side’s youngest player, Priyanshu Rajawat, received the Thomas Cup on the podium. When HS Prannoy went down clutching his ankle in the semifinals, it looked like panic stations. However, he fought through the pain barrier for the greater good. If anything defines this team, it’s this. It’s a bunch of individuals who make this team greater than the sum of their parts. This time last year, Lakshya Sen was No 23 in the world. A fantastic last year, including winning a bronze at the Worlds, has helped him become the lead player. This gave both Prannoy and Srikanth winnable matches coming in as the 2nd and 3rd singles players. End result? They returned a record of 11-0. This might sound a little dramatic. But you know, when I was in Korea for the Korea Masters, and the following week we had selection trials… immediately after those trials, when the team got announced, we created a (WhatsApp) group titled ‘We’ll Bring It Home’, or something like that. — Kidambi Srikanth, on the belief in this team Road to gold Group Stage bt Germany 5-0 bt Canada 5-0 lost to Chinese Taipei 2-3 Knockouts Quarterfinals bt Malaysia 3-2 Semifinals bt Denmark 3-2 Final bt Indonesia 3-0 Lakshya Sen bt Anthony Ginting 8-21, 21-17, 21-16. Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/ Chirag Shetty bt Mohammad Ahsan/ Kevin Sanjaya 18-21, 23-21, 21-19. Kidambi Srikanth bt Jonatan Christie 21-15, 23-21. 1 family, 1 ticket Strong winds to bring more heavy rain, alert continues rule in sweeping Cong reforms E x pr e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @T’Puram 50% posts to U-50, half the party positions to weaker sections part of Udaipur Declaration tion to SCs, STs, OBCs and minorities at all levels were apThe Congress on Sunday proved. Also, none can hold a adopted its Udaipur Nav Sanka- party position for more than lp Declaration at the end of its five years. chintan shivir, drawing up a Other important elements of comprehensive roadmap for the declaration include a new a wide-ranging internal reforms Mandal Samiti to strengthen to make the party ready for all the organisation and legally upcoming elections till the Lok guaranteed MSP for all 23 crops. Sabha polls in 2024. The party plans to A task force will star t a National be set up in the next Training Institute to 2-3 days to impletrain cadre with its ment the decisions, policies, ideology, Congress president and vision. It will announced Sonia also set up a moniGandhi. Also, an adtoring wing to keep visory committee of an eye on the perCongress Working formance of all parCommittee (CWC) Sonia Gandhi addressing ty officials. members headed by the concluding session of Prominent among Sonia will be formed the shivir in Udaipur | PTI the mass action proto deliberate on pogrammes was a nalitical issues. tionwide Kashmir to KanyakuAmong the proposals in the mari ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ from Udaipur Declaration was the Gandhi Jayanti day on October ‘one family, one ticket’ rule, 2. “It will aim to preserve the with exemption for big hitters foundational values of our Conin Congress for five years, stitution that are under assault which was seen as tailor-made and will highlight the day-tofor Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. As day concerns of our people,” reported in these columns over Sonia said. the last two days, 50% represenShe also announced the start tation to those aged below 50 of a mass contact programme, across the party organisation, called Jan Jagran Abhiyan, at and 50% in-house representa- the district level from June 15. R a j e s h A s n a n i @ Udaipur People wading through knee-deep water at V K Thankappan Road in Kochi. Heavy rain in the city till Sunday morning inundated many low-lying areas | A Sanesh AAP, Twenty20 float new political front EX P R ESS NEWS SE R VICE @Kochi The Aam Admi Party (AAP) and corporate-backed Twenty20 have joined hands to float a new front in Kerala, People’s Welfare Alliance. Announcing this at a massive rally in Kizhakkambalam near Kochi on Sunday , Delhi CM and AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal sounded optimistic that the alliance would come to power in the state. “First, we brought changes in Delhi, and then in Punjab. Next, we will change Kerala... We offer free electricity, water, education and healthcare in Delhi. In Delhi, we ensured that the government reaches people’s doors. If you want to bring a change in Kerala and get all these welfare measures, you have to support us,” Kejriwal ● More on P4 said in Hindi. Devasahayam Pillai 1st Indian layman to be canonised E x pr e s s N e w s S e r v i c e @T’Puram A decade after he was declared blessed, Devasahayam Pillai was conferred sainthood by Pope Francis at the Vatican around 2.30pm (IST) on Sunday He . is the first Indian layman to be canonised. The Pope Francis-led canonisation mass was held in St Peter’s Basilica. The mass, honouring 10 new saints, was attended by over 50,000 faithful from across the world. In Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram Latin Archbishop Dr Thomas J Netto held special prayers at Palayam St Joseph’s Cathedral to mark the occasion. Special prayers were also held in churches linked to Devasahayam Pillai in Kottar diocese of Kanyaku● More on P5 mari. The state remains on high alert as five districts in central and northern parts are expected to receive very heavy rain on Monday. It is likely to remain scattered. The intensity will depend on the strengthening of westerly winds from Arabian Sea, said weather experts. They pointed out that intensity of the rain remained low on Sunday as the wind speed did not pick up as forecast. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) had issued red alerts in five districts in central and northern Kerala, indicating high to very high Central, northern dists to bear brunt of downpour High alert as five districts in central and northern parts are expected to receive very heavy rain on Monday 1 Intensity of the rain remains low on Sunday as the wind speed did not pick up as predicted by the Met department 2 rain on Sunday . “The speed of wind remains difficult to predict. If it gains strength, there will be heavy rain on Monday. The sky will remain cloudy for two to three days,” said Rajeevan Erikku- lam, meteorologist of Kerala State Disaster Management Authority . The IMD has forecast squally weather with wind speed reaching 40-50 kmph likely to prevail along and off Kerala coast till May 19. It has warned fishermen from venturing into the sea during the period. The authorities have banned visitors at various tourist spots including eco tourism centres and wildlife sanctuaries in Thiruvananthapuram till further notice. The shutters of Aruvikara dam were lifted to 20 centimetres in the wake of the high rainfall in the catchment area. P2
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