Week In Review, Feb 19-25: Dhruv Jurel Headlines Resurgence In Ranchi; Footballers Put Up Strong Show In Turkish Cup

The Indian cricket team fought back superbly to gain ascendance in the fourth Test against England, and the national women's football team won both their Turkish Cup games. Let us review all that transpired in the world of sports from February 19 to 25, 2024


AP/Ajit Solanki
Dhruv Jurel celebrates his fifty on the third day of the fourth Test match between England and India in Ranchi on Saturday, February 25. Photo: AP/Ajit Solanki

The week that went by was a mixed bag for Indian sport. While the week before saw major triumphs for the women's badminton team as well as the men's cricket team, this one typified far more toil. Nevertheless, there were bright results from various quarters, and the hope of impending victories elsewhere. (More Sports News)

Rohit Sharma's men have found the going far tougher in the fourth Test than the previous one, where they decimated the Ben Stokes-led England by an incredible 434-run margin to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match series. But the team has forged a remarkable fightback, and is eyeing yet another series triumph.


Let us review all that transpired in the world of sports from February 19 to 25, 2024.


The Indian men's cricket team has faced many a hiccup through the course of the first three days in the fourth Test against England. The visitors' middle-order mainstay Joe Root scored an unbeaten century and the 20-year-old off-spinner Shoaib Bashir bagged a fifer to peg the hosts back. But India found solidity from newbies Akash Deep and Dhruv Jurel, who helped reduce the gap and keep their side in the game.

Akash Deep struck thrice in the first morning, and Jurel played a composed 90-run knock as India ended the second innings 46 runs behind England. The spinners - led by Ravichandran Ashwin - then wreaked havoc in the third innings to skittle Stokes and Co for a paltry 145.


Rohit and Yashasvi Jaiswal have commenced the home team's pursuit of the 192-run target positively, knocking off 40 runs in eight overs and staying unbeaten. If India rattle off the remaining 152 runs, they will take an unassailable 3-1 lead and secure their 17th consecutive home Test series victory.

Down Under, Australia registered a 3-0 away clean sweep against their trans-Tasman neighbours New Zealand in the T20I series. Mitchell Marsh's team showed its dominance by shutting out the Kiwis at home and warmed up nicely for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2024 in June.

In Dambulla, Sri Lanka followed up their Test and ODI series wins against Afghanistan by clinching the three-match T20I series 2-1, though the visiting Afghans did secure a thrilling three-run victory in the final T20I to end the tour on a high.

In the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup League 2, Nepal, Netherlands and Namibia played out a tri-series in the round-robin format. Namibia ended up on top with three wins in four games, which augurs well for their chances of qualification for the ICC ODI World Cup 2027.

Back home, in the Ranji Trophy, Tamil Nadu beat defending champions Saurashtra by an innings and 33 runs in Coimbatore to march into the semi-finals. But the three other quarter-finals are still underway and will resume Day 4 action on Monday (Feb 26). Vidarbha lead by 224 runs against Karnataka in Nagpur, Mumbai are ahead by 57 runs against Baroda at home and Andhra need 57 more runs to vanquish Madhya Pradesh in Indore.


In T20 franchise cricket, the Women's Premier League was off to an enthralling start. The league witnessed two cliffhangers in as many days. Harmanpreet Kaur's Mumbai Indians first beat Delhi Capitals courtesy Sajeevan Sajana's last-ball six, and the Royal Challengers Bangalore edged out UP Warriorz by two runs in a last-over thriller the next day, on the back of Asha Sobhana's superb five-wicket haul.


The first leg of the UEFA Champions League's round of 16 ties concluded. Inter Milan beat Atletico Madrid 1-0 at home and Porto stunned Arsenal via Galeno's stoppage-time goal. Elsewhere, PSV-Dortmund and Napoli-Barcelona both played out 1-1 draws. The return-leg fixtures are scheduled in the second week of March.


In the English Premier League, Arsenal thrashed Newcastle 4-1 at home, while Manchester United lost to Fulham 1-2. Elsewhere, La Liga saw Athletic Club edging out Girona 3-2 and Barcelona blanking Getafe 4-0.

The Indian Super League drew nearer to its business end, and a couple of key results this week were Odisha and Mohun Bagan ending with a 0-0 stalemate and Kerala Blasters sailing past FC Goa 4-2.

Meanwhile, the Indian women's football team put up a solid show in their first two matches of the Turkish Women's Cup, defeating Hong Kong 2-0 and Estonia 4-3. They will take on the unbeaten Kosovo in their third and final game on Tuesday (Feb 27).


Other Sports

In hockey, the Indian men's team ended its home leg of the FIH Pro League 2023-24 season on a high, beating Ireland 4-0 at the Birsa Munda Hockey Stadium in Rourkela. Harmanpreet Singh's team had agonizingly lost its previous game against Australia via a penalty shootout, so the win would have come as some reassurance.

In tennis, the women's competition of the Dubai Tennis Championships concluded on Saturday (Feb 24), with Italy's Jasmine Paolini overcoming qualifier Anna Kalinskaya in three sets to lift the trophy.

In table tennis, China swept the men's as well as women's titles at the ITTF World Team Table Tennis Championships 2024 in Busan to again exhibit just how invincible a TT nation they are.