Sports

Week in Review, April 1-7: Sumit Nagal Scripts History; Mirabai Chanu Books Paris Ticket

While Sumit Nagal and Mirabai Chanu brought good news for Indian sports fans, the results from the hockey field were not as satisfactory. In football, Premier League top three continued their back and forth while IPL saw another high-scoring week. Here we reflect on the events from April 1 to 7, 2024 across different sporting landscapes.

X/@sumitnagal
Sumit Nagal Photo: X/@sumitnagal
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Last week kicked off on a high note for Indian sports fans as Mirabai Chanu secured her ticket to the Paris Olympics on Monday, despite a less than satisfactory performance at the IWF World Cup. Ending on an equally positive note, tennis ace Sumit Nagal made history by becoming the first Indian in 42 years to qualify for the singles main draw of the Monte Carlo Masters tournament.

Events unfolded across various sports arenas worldwide. While the Premier League title race intensified, with the top three teams separated by just one point, the Bundesliga showcased a different narrative. Bayer Leverkusen raced closer to clinching the league title, with one win enough to decide the outcome.

The Indian Premier League (IPL) continued to deliver high-scoring encounters. Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) achieved the second-highest total in tournament history and Mumbai Indians (MI) finally got off the mark on the league table.

WrestleMania XL also took place last week and the main event saw a match for the ages.

As we reflect on the events from April 1 to 7, 2024, let's delve deeper into everything that unfolded across different sporting landscapes.

Football - Last Week Recap

Premier League Highlights

The Premier League top three continued their back and forth as Liverpool slipped to second in the table with Arsenal back on top with both at 70 points after round 31. Defending champions Manchester City sit a point away from both at the third spot.

Over the weekend, Liverpool dropped points as they were held by Manchester United 2-2 in a chaotic game while Arsenal and City both got three points with convincing wins over Brighton and Crystal Palace respectively.

Earlier in the week all three had registered victories.

In another mad game on Friday, two goals from Cole Palmer minutes before the final whistle saw Chelsea turnaround a 2-3 deficit against Manchester United to a 4-3 win.

Bundesliga Update

In Bundesliga, an unbeaten Bayer Leverkusen stood one win away from their maiden league title edging past 10-man Union Berlin on Saturday.

Copa Del Rey

Spanish football saw Athletic Bilbao end a 40-year wait to win their 25th Copa Del Rey after beating a spirited Real Mallorca in penalty shootout.

I-League Update

While leagues in Europe are still in decisive phases, in India I-League found its winner in Mohammedan Sporting. The Kolkata club won the league and booked a promotion to Indian Super League via a draw against Shillong Lajong FC in their penultimate match on Saturday.

Cricket - Last Week Recap

IPL Highlights

Major cricket attraction last week again was the IPL and the trend of sky-high totals in the league continued last week too.

On Wednesday, Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) blasted 272/7 against Delhi Capitals (DC) to create the record for the second-highest total in IPL history. Just the previous week, Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) had scored 277 and broken Royal Challengers Bengaluru's 2013 record of highest IPL total of 263.

Woes of RCB and DC continued as both suffered two defeats last week while Mumbai Indians finally seemed to get things right as they registered first win of the season on Sunday.

International Cricket Highlights

In international cricket, Sri Lanka defeated Bangladesh in the second Test to complete a 2-0 clean sweep. Kamindu Mendis was adjudged the man of the match as well as the man of the series.

Sri Lanka had more to cheer with their women creating history in South Africa. Riding on Chamari Athapaththu's 73, Sri Lanka brought up a historic 2-1 victory as they won a women's bilateral T20I series for the first time against South Africa.

Elsewhere in women's cricket, Australia swept aside the Bangladesh challenge earning a comfortable 3-0 victory in the T20I series.

After losing the T20I series 1-4, New Zealand Women bounced back to register a 2-1 victory over England Women in the ODIs with Sophie Devine scoring a century in the decider.

Hockey - Last Week Recap

With Paris Olympics in sight, Indian team landed in Australia to play a test series of five matches. However, two demoralising losses have meant that a bunch of questions now surround coach Craig Fulton's team.

After a 1-5 drubbing in the first game, India went down 2-4 in the second against Kookaburras.

Other Sports - Last Week Recap

Sumit Nagal Scripts History

Sumit Nagal on Sunday became the first Indian since 1982 to qualify for the men's singles draw of the Monte Carlo Masters. India's top ranked tennis star defeated Facundo Diaz Acosta of Argentina 7-5, 2-6, 6-2 in the second qualifying round to set up a clash with Italian Matteo Arnaldi in the first round.

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IWF World Cup

IWF World Cup in Phuket, Thailand brought two good news for India. Tokyo Olympic silver medalist Mirabai Chanu booked her ticket to the Paris Games despite an underwhelming performance which saw her clinching the third position in the women's 49kg.

Another Manipur weightlifter Bindyarani Devi on Tuesday became the first Indian to win a medal at the IWF World Cup after clinching bronze in women’s 55kg event.

Japanese Grand Prix

In Japan, Max Verstappen returned to winning ways with a resounding victory at Suzuka in the Japanese Grand Prix. Red Bull completed another one-two with Verstappen's teammate Sergio Perez finishing second with a difference of 12 seconds.

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Ferrari's Carlos Sainz took third beating teammate Charles Leclerc to continue on his 100% podium-finishing record this year.

Paris Marathon

For the first time in five years, Ethiopia achieved a double in the Paris Marathon thanks to victories on Sunday from Mulugeta Uma and Mestawut Fikir in the men's and women's divisions.

WrestleMania XL

Professional wrestling fans had a blast as Cody Rhodes defeated Roman Reigns in an absolutely wild main event at WrestleMania XL. The match, which helped Rhodes 'finish the story' saw special appearances from John Cena, The Rock, Seth Rollins and The Undertaker. The two-day event saw several title clashes and even the Money In The Bank being cashed in.

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