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2012 January - Sports

In the 100th edition of The Australian Open (2012), Serbia’s Novak Djokovic won the title by defeating Rafel Nadal of Spain in the mens singles while Victoria Azarenka of Belarus won the women’s singles by defeating Maria Sharapova of Russia. 

In the men’s doubles Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek won the title by defeating Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan. In the women’s doubles Svetlana Kuznetsova and Vera Zvonareva, both from Russia defeated Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, to win the title. The mixed event was won by Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Horia Tecau.

A. Amalraj won the national title by defeating A Sharath Kamal in the final of the 73rd Senior National and Inter-State Table Tennis Championships in Lucknow on 29 January 2012. 

Amalraj also won the double’s title with Sanil Shetty, by defeating Harmit Desai and Devesh Karia. In the women’s category Poulami Ghatak won the title by defeating K Shamini.

Pendyala Harikrishna of India won the prestigious TATAsteel international chess title which was held in Netherlands.

Pankaj Adwani won the Nationsl Billiards Chess championship by defeating the Balachandra Bhaskar in the finals which was held in Pune.

Sourabh Varma defeated B Sai Praneeth in the final to clinch the Senior National Badminton Championship title in Bangalore. The ninth seeded PV Sindhu defeated second seed Neha Pandit in the women's singles final to lift the title. 

In the mixed doubles category, top seeds Arun Vishnu and Balan Aparna, In the Mens doubles Kona Tarun and Arun Vishnu in the women's doubles, second seeds Pradnya Gadre and Prajakta Sawant won the titles.

Sixth seed GM Oliver Barbosa of Phillippines won the 10th Parsvnath International Open Grandmasters Chess tournament by defeating Indian IM Shyam Nikil. Indian International Master Lalith Babu won thebronze.

Senior Australian batsman Ricky Ponting was honoured with Austrlia’s highest civil honour along with a host of sportspersons of international repute. The former skipper was appointed an officer (AO) in the general division of the Order of Australia for distinguished service to the sport of cricket as a leading player, and to the community through the establishment of the Ponting Foundation.

Rajasthan won its second consecutive Ranji Trophy title by defeating Tamil Nadu at the Chidambaram stadium, Tamil Nadu on 23 January 2012. V A Saxena of Rajasthan was awarded the Man of the Match in the final.

Argentina’s Lionel Messi was awarded the 2011 FIFA Best player award on 9 January 2012 in Zurich. He won the award for the third consecutive year. Japanese Homare Sawa was awarded the 2011 FIFA Best player in the women’s category. Barcelona’s coach Pep Guardiola was named FIFA Coach of the Year.

Kerala men won the National title for the fourth time, in the 60th senior National volleyball championship by defeating uttarakhand at the Balbir Juneja Indoor Stadium, Raipur on 11 January 2012. The Railways won the national title in the women’s category.

The Czech Republic defeated France and lifted its second Hopman Cup held in Perth, Australia. Thomas Berdych and Petra Kvitova represented the Czech.

Milos Raonic of Canada won the Chennai open tennis title,2012. Leander peas and Janko Tipsarevic won the mens doubles title.

The 19-year-old Rohith Lalith Babu became the 26th Grandmaster of India and fourth GM from Andhra Pradesh. Incidentally, the last Indian to become a GM was D Harika, also from the same state. Babu is also from the same city which World runners-up Humpy hails from. Harikrishna is the other GM from the A.P State.

Canadian Milos Raonic won the ATP Chennai Open by defeating world number nine Janko Tipsarevic 6-7 7-6 7-6 in the final on 8 January 2012. Milos Raonic was named the best newcomer in 2011 after he rose from 156 to 31 in the rankings.

Raonic slammed 35 aces on the way to his second career title in a rousing clash that lasted three hours and 13 minutes. Tipsarevic had won the opening set it was the first time in the tournament Raonic. Neither player was however able to gain a service break in the entire match, with all three tie-breaks ending 7-4.

Kerala men defeated Uttarakhand 25-22, 25-22, 25-13 to win the National title for the fourth time, in the 60th senior National volleyball championship, at the Balbir Juneja Indoor Stadium, Raipur on 11 January 2012. Kerala had last won its men's title by beating Tamil Nadu in 2001 in Raipur. It repeated the feat a decade later after 72-minute final.

Uttarakhand had first won the title in 2002. In 2012, lack of bench strength and ageing players led to Uttarakhand's defeat. Serices ranked third ahter defeating Tamil Nadu.

Tom Joseph was judged the Man of the Tournament while Terin Antony emerged Woman of the tournament.

According to the draft sports policy of the Kerala Government released on 11 January 2012, a special life-time achievement award, in memory of G.V. Raja, the founder-president of the Kerala State Sports Council is to be instituted. The award is to be instituted to recognise contributions towards the overall development of sport in the State.

The current prize-money of Rs. 1 lakh given to winner the G.V. Raja award,the highest sporting honour of the State is to be enhanced.

The scope of the cash awards now in vogue and given to medal winners of identified competitions at the National level would also be reviewed.

Argentina’s Lionel Messi was awarded the 2011 FIFA Ballon d'Or on 9 january 2012 in Zurich. He won the award for the third consecutive year for the world's outstanding footballer. Messi who plays for club Barcelona won 47.88 per cent votes and finished ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo (21.6)%) and Xavi (9.23%).

Messi becomes only the second player, after current UEFA president Michel Platini, to win the award for three consecutive years. He joined Platini, Johan Cruyff and Marco van Basten as the only men to have won the prize thrice.



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