Firstpost Spodcast Episode 212: Apurvi Chandela bags shooting gold, China retain Sudirman Cup title on home soil and more

Welcome to Spodcast.

In tennis news, the 2019 French Open got underway on Sunday. Roger Federer marked his return to Roland Garros after a four-year absence with a straight sets win over Italy's Lorenzo Sogo while Angelique Kerber's hopes of completing a career Grand Slam came to an end.

In the women's draw, German fifth seed and reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber saw her hopes of a career Grand Slam ended by Russian teenager Anastasia Potapova. Kerber lost 6-4, 6-2 to 18-year-old Potapova who was making her French Open debut. The 31-year-old has now lost six times in the first round of the French Open. The German left-hander had come into Roland Garros carrying a right ankle injury that forced her out of the Italian Open and saw her retire from a second-round tie in Madrid. Her serve was broken six times by Potapova. The 81st-ranked Russian, who hit 28 winners past the German, said, "Kerber is actually one of my idols, and when I was young I was looking for her game."

India's Apurvi Chandela continued her golden run of form, winning the women's 10m Air Rifle event after a close contest on Sunday at this year's third International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup Rifle/Pistol stage in Munich, Germany. Chandela shot a score of 251 in the final to outshine Wang Luyao of China, who shot 250.8. Another Chinese shooter, Xu Hong, finished third with a score of 229.4 It was a neck-and-neck battle between Apurvi and Wang, where the Indian was just 0.1points ahead as she shot a 10.4 to Wang's 10.3 to clinch the issue.

In Formula One news, defending champion Lewis Hamilton soaked up intense pressure on Sunday to secure a narrow, dramatic and emotional victory for Mercedes at the Monaco Grand Prix.
Hamilton finished ahead of Red Bull's Max Verstappen by a hair's breadth in a race riddled with drama. By lap 42, Hamilton led Verstappen by just six-tenths of a second with Sebastian Vettel third 1.7 seconds adrift, ahead of Valtteri Bottas. Hamilton radioed the team on lap 50, "I think I'm in big trouble guys," only to be told Mercedes had no intention of pitting again.
Hamilton managed to stay half a second ahead, warding off a lunge from Verstappen on lap 76. Their cars touched, but continued, with Hamilton cutting the chicane to retain the initiative and win.

In badminton news, China won the Sudirman Cup for the 11th time after defeating Japan on Sunday. Shi Yuqi stunned world champion Kento Momota as hosts China whitewashed Japan 3-0. Their dominant victory over the top seeds is an ominous indication of the depth they possess in their ranks with next summer's Tokyo Olympics on the horizon. Roared on by a raucous home crowd, China went 1-0 up through their men's doubles and then took a 2-0 lead after a captivating women's singles match between Chen Yufei and Akane Yamaguchi.

Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar feels that, just like a bowling outfit, a batting side should also be penalised seven runs if they breach the rules of the game during the course of a match.
Tendulkar's comments came after a bizarre controversy rocked the second semi-final of the Mumbai T20 League between Sobo Supersonics and Aakash Tigers Mumbai Western Suburb on Saturday.

Your guide to the latest cricket World Cup stories, analysis, reports, opinions, live updates and scores on https://www.firstpost.com/firstcricket/series/icc-cricket-world-cup-2019.html. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram or like our Facebook page for updates throughout the ongoing event in England and Wales.

Updated Date: May 27, 2019 14:35:03 IST