Sports World, January 26, 2024: Novak Djokovic Loses To Jannik Sinner In Australian Open Semi-Finals; India Tighten Screws On England In 1st Test's Day 2 Duel - As It Happened

Elsewhere, build-up continued for the Africa Cup of Nations and the AFC Asian Cup, while teams contested in the ICC Under-19 Men's Cricket World Cup in South Africa. Here are the highlights from the sports world on Republic Day, January 26, 2024

World number one men's singles tennis player Novak Djokovic in action at the Australian Open 2024 AP


India continued their five-game Test bout against England on Day 2 in Hyderabad sans Virat Kohli, who was confirmed to be missing the first two matches due to personal reasons; India were well ahead in the contest as they led England by 175 runs and had three wickets to spare at Day 2 closing. Down Under, Novak Djokovic lost to Jannik Sinner while Daniil Medvedev beat Alexander Zverev in the men's singles semi-finals in the Australian Open 2024. Meanwhile, build-up to the AFC Asian Cup 2023 knockouts continued, but with no Indian football team to partake in it any further; India were knocked out on January 23 after a loss to Syria. Elsewhere, the ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup hosted key games. (Cricket News | Football News)


Novak Vs Sinner Coming Up

Time for the big one. Novak Djokovic is taking the court for the mouth-watering men's singles semi-final between him and Jannik Sinner. The winner of this clash will take on the victor in the second titanic tussle of the day - Alexander Zverev vs Daniil Medvedev. Stay tuned for an absolute sporting spectatcle on R-Day. 


Sinner One Set Away From Win!

Well, this was certainly unexpected. Italy's fourth-ranked Jannik Sinner has taken the first two sets in commanding fashion against Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open 2024 semi-final. The numero uno in men's singles is down 1-6, 2-6 and will again need to dig deep to claw his way back in. But if at all there is someone in world tennis who can be expected to do that, it is Djokovic. Stay tuned.

Sinner Wins!

The 22-year-old from Italy has done the unthinkable. He has vanquished Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open semi-final. This is Djokovic's first defeat at the Grand Slam in 1,295 days, and his first-ever semi-final loss. Sinner is the first man from Italy to beat a world number 1 singles player at a Grand Slam.

Read our match report here.  


Zverev Starts Strong Against Medvedev

The second men's singles semi-final of Australian Open 2024 is underway. Alexander Zverev, who beat Carlos Alcaraz in a pulsating encounter on Wednesday, has surged to a 4-1 lead against Daniil Medvedev. 


Cricket West Indies Commits To Gender Pay Equity

Cricket West Indies has committed to gender pay equity among its players, having signed a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the West Indies Players Association, PTI reports. The MoU is for the period from October 1, 2023 to September 30, 2027 and covers all agreements in respect of player remuneration and updated terms and conditions across the West Indies system.


AO24 - Medvedev Fights Back

Daniil Medvedev is not going down without a fight. After losing the first two sets in his men's singles semi-final clash against Alexander Zverev, he has won the third set and is staying in the hunt in the fourth set, which currently stands at 5-5. Should both players hold serve next, the set will go to a tie-breaker. Medvedev must win this set to force a decider in the best-of-five encounter. 

AO24 - Medvedev Wins Five-Set Thriller

Daniil Medvedev came from two sets down to beat Alexander Zverev in the Australian Open 2024 semi-finals, confirming his place opposite Jannik Sinner in Sunday's grand Final. Zverev took a 2-0 lead in the match, winning the first two sets 7-5, 6-3, before Medvedev levelled the tie with two successive tie-break wins. Medvedev, then, broke Zverev midway through the fifth set, before taking the set 6-3. 

Shoaib Malik Responds To Match-Fixing Rumours 

"I have always found joy in playing the game and will continue to do so. I want to emphasize the importance of exercising caution when it comes to rumors, especially those circulating recently. I want to make it clear that I strongly refute these baseless rumors," Malik wrote on X, responding to speculation that his contract with Bangladesh Premier League outfit, Fortune Barishal, came to an end due to match-fixing. 

Read full story here

AFC Asian Cup Draw Set! 

Here's how the AFC Asian Cup 2023 round-of-16 looks like: 

Jan 28: Australia vs Indonesia

Jan 28: Tajikistan vs UAE

Jan 29: Iraq vs Jordan

Jan 29: Qatar vs Palestine

Jan 30: Uzbekistan vs Thailand

Jan 30: Saudi Arabia vs South Korea

Jan 31: Bahrain vs Japan

Jan 31: Iran vs Syria

Klopp Quits Liverpool 

In today's big news, Jurgen Klopp announced his decision to quit Liverpool at the end of the current season, much to the surprise of the footballing fraternity. Once he steps down from his role, Klopp will have completed almost nine seasons as the Liverpool manager, during which time he has led them to at least one Premier League title and a Champions League triumph. 

Bopanna In AO Final Action 

Coming up tomorrow morning, Rohan Bopanna, world's oldest #1 ranked tennis player will play the Australian Open 2024 Men's Doubles Final with his partner Matthew Ebden. The pair will go up against Simone Bolelli and Andrea Vavassori of Italy at 3:15 PM IST (times may vary). Before that, though, Aryna Sabalenka will face Qinwen Zheng in the Women's Singles final.