Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Maradona sacked as Argentina's Football Coach

The Argentine Football Association (AFA) has finally decided not to renew the national team coach Diego Maradona's contract.

Diego Maradona was offered the role of Argentina's national football team coach in November 2008. During Maradona's short stint as a coach, the national team was not very impressive with only just qualifying for the recently concluded FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa by the skin of their teeth. In the FIFA World Cup 2010 quarter-finals, Germany proved too strong for Argentina as they thrashed Argentina to a 4-0 defeat.

Despite the team's loss in FIFA World Cup 2010, he was greeted by his fans and even President Cristina Fernandez urged him to continue as the coach of the national team. The Argentine Football Association offered him a new four-year contract which will extend till the 2014 World Cup. But Maradona said he would only stay if his entire staff remained.

Maradona told media that he would continue to stay on as coach with a condition he would keep his faithful assistant Alejandro Mancuso and other backroom staff. This indefinite condition was not accepted by AFA president Julio Grondona, who wanted to make replacements in the coaching staffs.

With Maradona's departure, the Argentine Football Association is on the hunt for a new coach ahead of next year's Copa America regional tournament. Alejandro Sabella is most likely to succeed Maradona as he led Estudiantes to the Copa Libertadores in 2009.

Others in the race for the dream role are Racing Club's Miguel Angel Russo and Sergio Batista who is currently in charge of the Argentine youth set-up. Under Sergio Batista's guidelines the country won the Olympic glory in Beijing Games, 2008.

Even though fans are in favor of Carlos Bianchi, his chances are very low due to his poor relationship with AFA president Grondona.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Google introduces - Blogger Stats

Many of us use Google Analytics or some other third party software and tools to keep track of our blog/site traffic. But most of these provide us with little information and are too complex to use. To put an end to the woes of bloggers, Google has finally introduced ‘Blogger Stats’ which is an easier-to-use and fully-integrated stats feature for Blogger.

You don’t have to sign up anywhere or install/configure anything. All you have to do is, just go to and Sign in your account. Your dashboard will remain the same, except for a small change. A new tab named ‘Stats’ will be added. Click that and your Stats is ready.

The coolest thing about this Stats feature is that it monitors and analyzes your blog's traffic in near-real-time. It helps you to see which post is getting the most visits and which sites are sending traffic to your blog right now.

For example, if a reader shares one of your blog posts on Twitter and the post is getting lots of clicks, you will see a traffic increase in Blogger Stats almost instantly, with the particular Tweet mentioning your post being identified as the traffic source. Of course, traffic data across longer time periods (day/week/month) and all-time historical data are available as well.

There are also a lot more data that can be tracked like popular search keywords that send visitors to your blog, which country your visitors come from, and the web browser they use etc. With this new Stats feature, you probably know what's going on with your blog right now. The new Stats feature shows all these data in a simple, easy-to-understand graphical user interface.

But do remember, this ‘Stats’ tab disappears once you sign out. If you wish to own it permanently, just put a tick mark in the check box that appears at the top right of dashboard window which says ‘Make Blogger in Draft my default dashboard’. So check out this exciting Stats feature now, and let us know what you feel about it.

Angelina Jolie to play queen 'Cleopatra'

35-year-old Hollywood hot diva Angelina Jolie is all set to play the role of the last queen of Egypt 'Cleopatra' in an upcoming historic biography.

US Weekly today reported that the bombshell of Hollywood will be playing the role of 'Queen of Nile' on the big screen this time. The film is to be based upon the book “Queen of the Nile, Cleopatra: A Life” by Stacy Schiff which is yet to be released.

Author Stacy Schiff feels Jolie would be ideal in the role because of her royal nature. Producer Scott Rudin has purchased the film rights of this upcoming book. Talking to reporters Jolie said 'I would be honored to play Cleopatra. But, we haven't gotten the script yet'.

The most well-known movie till date about Cleopatra was the one played by real life celebrity couple Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in the 1963 lavish flick 'Cleopatra'. The great actresses of Hollywood Elizabeth Taylor portrayed Cleopatra and Richard Burton played Cleopatra’s Roman lover Marc Anthony.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

CSA Cricketer of the year - Hashim Amla

Hashim Amla was rewarded for a stint of excellent performances with the bat over the 12 months by claiming top honors at the 2010 South Africa Cricket Awards on Tuesday evening. Amla has been at this very best over the last year, scoring 923 runs which includes four centuries at a formidable average of 65.92 in 9 Tests played against World no. 1 Test team India, England, and West Indies. His blistering knocks earned him two of the most prestigious recognitions of the night - the 'South African cricketer of the year' and the 'South African Test cricketer of the year awards'.

In addition, Amla's consistency was recognized by his teammates and the wider public as he was voted the SA players' player and the CSA fans' cricketer of the year. He also won the "So Good!" award reserved for the best individual match performance his match-winning knock of 253* runs against India in Nagpur last year.

His companion, AB de Villiers, who scored four ODI centuries during the same period, including three in successive innings, was named the ODI cricketer of the year. Fast bowler Charl Langeveldt was awarded the 'international Pro20 award'. Ryan McLaren, who made his Test and ODI debuts during the ation period was picked up as the 'newcomer of the year' award.

Monday, July 19, 2010

India Vs Sri Lanka 1st Test, Galle, Day 1

The first test match between India and Sri Lanka started yesterday at Galle, Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat first.

India's Playing XI:
Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni, Harbhajan Singh, Pragyan ojha, Ishant Sharma, Abhinav mithun.

Sri Lanka's playing XI:
Tillakaratne Dilshan, Tharanga Paranavitana, Kumara Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene, Samaraweera, Angelo Mathews, Prasanna Jayawardene, Rangana Herath, M Muralitharan, Lasith Malinga, Chanaka Welegedara.

Day 1's summary:
Sri Lanka started their 1st innings with Tillakaratne Dilshan and Tharanga Paranavitana as openers. Dilshan gave Sri Lanka, a blistering start scoring 25 runs (6x4) before he caught by Indian skipper MS Dhonia of Abhinav mithun's ball. Mithun struck with a well-directed bouncer to get Dilshan out. This was his maiden test wicket. Then came Sri Lankan skipper Kumara Sangakkara. The duo bossed the Indian blowling attack to reach a strong position by the end of the opening day. Both the batsmen went on to score centuries with Tharanga making his maiden and Sangakkara his 22 century. Sehwag sent Sangakkara to pavillion after scoring 103 runs (12x4). He was caught by Tendulkar. Then came Mahela Jayawardene but the match was interrupted due to bad light. Paranavitana 110* and Jayawardene 8* are still on the crease.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

F1 Constructor's Championship Standings

With the completion of 10 races, McLaren leads the Constructor's Championship in Formula 1. Still 9 races to go and with the fastest cars on the track there are chances for Red Bull Renault to bounce back to the top. RBR-Renault is currently 29 points behind McLaren. Ferrari is placed third.

  1. McLaren-Mercedes — 278 points
  2. RBR-Renault — 249 points
  3. Ferrari — 165 points
  4. Mercedes GP — 126 points
  5. Renault — 89 points
  6. Force India-Mercedes — 47 points
  7. Williams-Cosworth — 31 points
  8. BMW Sauber-Ferrari — 15 points
  9. STR-Ferrari — 10 points
  10. Lotus-Cosworth — 0 point
  11. HRT-Cosworth — 0 point
  12. Virgin-Cosworth — 0 point

Friday, July 16, 2010

Costa Rica - Green Countries of the World

Costa Rica (Rich coast) - a warm country in Central America stands third in the list of Green countries in the world with 86.4 points. In terms of the 2010 Environmental Performance Index, it stands first among the Americas. The country which has been saying it would remain a clean and tidy country is now Costa working on the conservation of forest especially the virgin forests and its biodiversity.

For sure, Costa Rica is going to be a country with zero emissions of industrial carbon dioxide by 2021. To attain this goal, the Government encourages the development of new types of alternative energy sources and at the same time implementing already existing energy sources in the industry. Since it’s a warm country it does not have to heat the house which almost reduces one-third of energy consumption.

Last century, Costa Rica, which had abandon forest resources, cut down trees for export to foreign countries. The country is now trying to plant new trees to replace the cut downed. In 2008, despite the recession 5 million new trees were planted and this has given new hope for the restoration of trees destroyed earlier.

Sweden - Green Countries of the World

Sweden – the Nordic country in Europe stands fourth in the list of Green countries in the world with 86.0 points. While the rest of the European countries are experiencing hard times as they need to pay higher for fuel, Sweden is gradually shifting to renewable energy sources. It all started during one of the fuel crisis way back in 1980.The Sweden Government is already in fast track to transfer all the houses on the fuel-free mode.

Sweden now focuses on efficient use of its rivers, wind and sun. It is gradually transferring to the use of biogas in vehicles instead of the normal methane. These bio-fuels are much cheaper and are produced in the bowels of the earth gas. To meet the growing demands for energy, Sweden is also building nuclear power plants, which are well, not exactly "clean".

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Indian Rupee finally gets its symbol

Finally, the Indian currency Rupee has got a symbol like that of the U.S. Dollar ($) or the Yen (¥) or the Euro (€) or the Pound (£). Today, the Indian Cabinet finalized the design for the Rupee.

In March 2009, the finance ministry of India announced a competition inviting creative designs from Indian residents to represent a symbol for the rupee with guidelines stating that the symbol should represent the historical and cultural ethos of the country. Prize money of Rs 2.5 lakh was also announced.

Whopping 25,000 applications were received from across the country, out of which 5 designs were short-listed for the final reviews. Indian Institute of Technology(IIT) post-graduate Uday kumar's entry has been selected out of five shortlisted designs as the new symbol for the Indian Rupee. All new notes will bear the design finally approved.

The fast-paced growth of the Indian economy in the global space is said to have prompted the government this move that has resulted in the Indian rupee joining the elite club of global currencies like the U.S. dollar, the European Euro the Great Britain Pound, and Japanese Yen that have unique symbols for decades.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Mark Webber wins F1 Santander British Grand Prix

2010 World Champion contender Mark Webber won the Silverstone Grand Prix here on Sunday. Mclaren's 2008 World Champion Lewis Hamilton came second ahead of Mercedes GP's Nico Rosberg. McLaren’s 2009 World Champion Jenson Button who started 14th from the grid finished fourth.

The race started with the Red Bull's Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel occupying the front row. Vettel sustained a punctured left rear tyre after being swiped by Hamilton’s front wing in turn one at the start of the race and ran wide which pushed him down the lane. But he showed an aggressive race and finished seventh minimized the huge damage to his championship campaign.

Williams-Cosworth's Rubens Barrichello finished fifth ahead of BMW Sauber-Ferrari's Kamui Kobayashi. Force India-Mercedes driver Adrian Sutil finished eighth and collected some valuable points. Six time F1 world champion Michael Schumacher finished ninth in his Mercedes GP. Nico Hulkenberg finished tenth and collected the least available points.

Dhoni Signs Rs. 2 Billion endorsement deal

Indian cricket team skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni signed a whopping Rs.2 billion endorsement deal with a talent management company. The talent firm will handle Dhoni's list of endorsements and brand associations, corporate profile, patents and digital rights, images, visibility on social networking sites and merchandise.

The subcontinent's most expensive sportsperson, Dhoni, is associated with 22 brands namely PepsiCo, Reebok, Aircel, Godrej and Hersheys etc,... Last year, Forbes magazine named him the 'world's highest-grossing cricketer'. He is cricket's first $10 million-a-year man. Dhoni charges up to Rs 6 crore for an endorsement a year.

With this big budget deal, Dhoni has surpassed little master Sachin Tendulkar in the corporate contract sweepstakes. In 2006, Tendulkar signed a three-year deal with sports management firm Iconix worth Rs 1.80 billion.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Glamorous Girls of Tennis

There are two kinds of people who watch women's tennis. One who is really passionate about tennis and the other for glamour. But it is actually glamour which pulls more crowds. Here is the list of some of the most Glamorous Girls of Tennis.

Anna Kournikova
Russia's Anna Kournikova has never ever won a grand slam title in her entire career; but still this beauty queen is famous as any of her champion counter parts. She took the tennis world by storm with her sex-appeal. Her name was one of the most common search strings in Google as millions of fans kept looking for her images in internet.

Maria sharapova
Unlike her compatriot Anna Kournikova, Sharapova has game. Standing tall at 6 ft 4", this Russian gal is a trend-setter when it comes to the game and outfits. She even has a best-selling perfume named after her.

Steffi Graf
Genius, grace, game - German beauty Steffi Graf had it all! Arguably she was the true queen of tennis. She never got carried away by any sort distraction. The game remained her top priority always; still the German blonde was hailed for her amazing figure, too.

Gabriela Sabatini

There is always something unique about Argentina's Gabriela Sabatini. It may either be her brunette hair or her ever appealing smile. It was in the finals of the 1990 US Open, when she beat the then world # 1 Steffi Graf and took tennis world by storm.

Chris Evert

Chris Evert - the diva of ’70s, tennis’s original glam girl well known for her hair cut, won 18 Grand Slam titles altogether. Her hair style was soo popular that made millions of women around the world copy it.

Monica Seles

She won her first grand slam title at 16, making her the youngest ever to win the title. During her career she was often posed a tough challenge to Steffi Graf. She won 8 Grand Slams until her career ended abruptly.

Martina Hingis

This Czechoslovakian won several Grand Slams in her career. But injuries cut short her career. Hingis had great charm and a captivating smile!

Daniela Hantuchova

This slim gal with her innocent looks caught the world’s fancy. Even though she has never won a Grand Slam title, she has a huge fan base following her on and off the tennis court.

Maria Kirilenko

Another Russian beauty, Maria Kirilenko has turned into photographer's favorite. She was featured in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition.

Sania Mirza
This Hyderabadi gal from the sub-continent has a slew of fans all around the world. She married Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik recently.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Amitabh Bachan to host KBC 4

The latest buzz is Bollywood is that fourth season of the most popular game show Kaun Banega Crorepati will go on air by end of this year. Guess what, it’s not going to be broadcasted in Star Plus. Instead it is Sony which has won the race to telecast it.

Rumors were that either Aamir Khan or Anil Kapoor will host the show. But well wishers of audience and Amitabh Bachan insisted that he should be brought back. With this Big B returns to the small screen for the third time.

In 2001, Big B hit the small screen for the first time in Star Plus channel with Kaun Banega Crorepati, a game show with the prize money of Rs. 1 crore. The game show was a grand success. KBC occupied the 9 pm slot in almost every television set in the nation. TRP of the show hit an all time high, movie halls declared a slump in earnings because of the 9 pm show.

In 2005, the second season of KBC saw him yet again with the prize money doubled to Rs. 2 crores. But because of Bachan’s illness, the season ended abruptly. In 2007, The badshah of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan stepped into the shoes of Amitabh Bachan to the host. But KBC 3 didn't do well with the audience. TRPs saw a huge difference between the two seasons hosted by Big B and the 3rd season hosted by King Khan.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Norway - Green Countries of the World

The Land of the Midnight Sun, Norway, stands fifth in the list of Green Countries with 81.1 points in the stoballnoy scale (used to evaluate the emission of Co2). Norway is one of the most sparsely populated countries in Europe, but the third wealthiest country in the world in terms of monetary value. It is well known for its rich oil and natural gas deposits, hydroelectric power, minerals and forests. It is the fifth largest exporter of oil and third largest exporter of gas.

The Co2 emission from oil refineries pollutes the atmosphere heavily and so the government is making purchase of equipment and technologies which will reduce Co2 emission. It is planning to reduce emission of carbon dioxide by 40%. Though the steps taken by the Norwegian government is not purely scientific, but economic, it is planning to become a country with virtually no industrial emissions of Co2 by 2030.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Top 5 Green Countries of the world

The average temperature of the Earth is increasing day by day. Ice bergs in North and South Pole of the earth are melting at a fast pace. Most of the countries around the world have now taken this as a major issue and started taking steps to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. But there are few countries which are way ahead in this campaign. Let us see some of these Green Countries. Scientists at Yale University ranked these countries based on the stoballnoy (Russian Word) scale which is used to evaluate the emission of Co2.

5. Norway

4. Sweden

3. Costa Rica

2. Switzerland
1. Iceland

Friday, July 2, 2010

Brazil Knocked out by Netherlands

Five-time world champions Brazil has been knocked out of the FIFA World Cup 2010 South Africa. The Quarter final match at Port Elizabeth witnessed the best teams namely Brazil often referred as 'A Seleção' and Netherlands known as 'The Oranje' in reference to their orange jersey.

Yellow cards clouded both the teams. Brazil's star players Kaka, Felipe Melo, Juan, Luis Fabiano entered the ground carrying yellow cards. The Dutch team saw as many as 8 players carrying yellow cards.

Brazil had a sensational opening with ROBINHO converting the pass from FELIPE MELO to a goal on the very 10th minute of the match. The Dutch team trailing by 1-0 started promisingly the second half. The Oranje was lucky to get a same side goal from FELIPE MELO on the 53rd minute.

That made it 1-1. This was the second time the Dutch team have benifited from an own goal (the previous one being against Denmark where Daniel Agger scored an OG). Finally Wesley SNEIJDER scored the oranje's first goal on the 68th minute and won the man of the match award.

On the 73rd minute, FELIPE MELO was given a red card and sent off the field. And that saw the end of Brazil's dream of a sixth world crown dismantled at the quarter-final stage. The Netherlands are on their way to Semi-final match at Cape Town.



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