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From the archives of the Hindustan Times: August 5

By Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By HT Correspondent,

Cairo- Iraq poured in more troops in Kuwait over the last 24 hours to consolidate its position right up to the Saudi border.


Iraq tightens its grip on Kuwait (1990)

Cairo- Iraq poured in more troops in Kuwait over the last 24 hours to consolidate its position right up to the Saudi border as mediation efforts by Arab leaders apparently failed and Baghdad announced that there was no scope for the return of Kuwait’s once-powerful ruler Shaikh Jaber al Ahmed al Sabah and his family.

Diplomats here said sharp differences existed among the 21-nation Arab League members, six of whom had openly defied pleas by Kuwait at the emergency League Foreign Ministers’ meeting here last night to condemn Iraq. League secretary general Chadli Klibi had told newsmen the remaining members (13) besides Iraq and Kuwait criticised Iraq for its invasion, called for its troop’s withdrawal and talks to resolve any differences between the two neighbours.

Mr Klibi also said a mini-summit of Saudi Arabian King Fahd, United Arab Emirates (UAE) president Shaikh Zayed, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and Jordanian King Hussein was to be held in the Saudi Red Sea city of Jeddah, but today Mr Mubarak was quoted by Egyptian news agency Mena as saying it had now been cancelled as efforts were on to prepare a basis for withdrawal and talks.

Paes ignites new hope for India (1996)

After years of underachievement, Indian sport has something to show and cherish in the form of a bronze medal earned by Leander Paes at the Centennial Olympic Games. And having lit a beacon of hope for those who believe that sport need not necessarily sacrifice its soul, young Leander also proved his talent is incandescent through a series of extraordinary performances at Atlanta.

At a time when tennis, a game with a scope beyond others in the modern world of commercial sponsorship, is having tough competition at the top echelon, Paes could not have sought a better occasion to dispel the gloom brought about by the Indian contingent at Atlanta. It also brought to light that an Indian sportsperson has the mettle to compete with the best in the world.

It is common knowledge that statistics can often belittle sporting achievement.

China’s groans, Saina’s bronze (2012)

London- Medals don’t come about by mere chance, they come from strategy.

Saina Nehwal earned India’s first badminton Olympic medal — a bronze — when Wang Xin’s left knee refused to bear her medal hopes. A fall at the end of the first game saw the Chinese unable to carry on and the board read 18-21, 0-1 retired. However, the scampering around that forced the fall was on account of the incessant pressure the Indian had built up.

“The game plan was to keep the rallies long and wear her down,” Nehwal said. “When she fell, I thought she was just playing for time as she was getting visibly tired.”

The longest rally of the match in the middle of the first game went to 41 strokes. With the score 10-15 in her favour, Wang seemed to be looking for reasons to slow down the game. Even as Nehwal wiped her brow and got ready for the next point, her opponent kept asking for the court to be wiped, citing that it was too slippery. Over the next few points she repeatedly bent over, leaned on her racquet and kept heaving for air.

Nehwal was gracious in victory, choosing not to celebrate the walkover win. But she was all smiles as she draped the Indian flag around her. “It was unfortunate Wang had to retire,” coach Pullela Gopichand said later. “But I feel Saina would have won anyway if the match had gone on.”

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