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2011 December Sports

Indian Grandmaster Abhijeet Gupta won the London Chess Classic's open section, with a hard-earned victory over Grandmaster Keith Arkell of England. Abhijeet, a former world junior champion and reigning national champion, scored eight points in all. The chess tournament was held from 3 December 2011 to 12 December 2011.

Another Indian, International Master Sahaj Grover pulled himself to the second spot after defeating English Grandmaster Peter Wells in the final round of the event. Sahaj, who scored 7.5 points in all.

Swiss tennis star Roger Federer defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France in their singles final tennis match at the Barclay’s ATP World Tour Finals, in the O2 arena in London on 27 November 2011. The victory earned him a record sixth ATP World Tour Finals title.

Federer has won 70 trophies in his career and has also equalled Lendl's record of 39 match wins in the end-of-season event.

Federer received the winners' cheque worth $770,000. For the first time since 2002 he ended the season without a Grand Slam title.

Ameya Walavalkar of Mars Racing registered his sixth win of 2011 in the Formula LGB Swift class, thereby clinching his maiden drivers' championship title in the JK Tyre-FMSCI National Racing Championship at the MMRT in Irungattukottai on 27 November 2011.

Walavalkar finished 22 points ahead of teammate R. Deepak, who came fifth in the race. Sarosh Hataria of Meco Motorsports stood second.

Karthik Krishna finished third but was penalised for overtaking when the yellow flag was being waved and thus conceded his podium place to Chitesh Mandody.

India won its 6th SAFF Championship title against the newcomer, Afghanistan on 11 December 2011. India's star striker Sunil Chhetri won all the individual awards in the tournament.

India was a five time SAFF champion before it won the 2011 SAFF. The other participating nations in the 2011 South Asian Football Federation Championship (SAFF) were Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Maldives, Nepal and Pakistan.

Winner India received a prize purse of USD 50,000 while Afghanistan took home USD 25,000. In addition, All India Football Federation announced a cash award of Rs. 1 lakh for each player for winning the tournament.

Laa Talar defeated Ansal Yadav of Uttar Pradesh to clinch the title of the 25th national sub-junior badminton championship on 8 December 2011. He is the first from North East India. It was the maiden National singles title for the lad from Itanagar, who had earlier won the under-16 boys' doubles title in the National championship. The tenth standard student trains at the Prakash Padukone Academy in Bangalore.

It was the third title for Laa Talar as he had won two National ranking tournaments recently, including one at the expense of Ansal Yadav, who had stretched him to three games.

According to the latest ICC ranking released on 7 December 2011, India's R Ashwin moved into top 20 of the ICC ODI bowling charts for the first time in his career following his consistent performance in India’s test and one day series against West Indies. With 620 points, Ashwin was ranked 18th, a jump of three places. After his performance in the recent three-match series in Bangladesh, Pakistan's Mohammad Hafeez gained six places in the latest rankings and now sits just 19 ratings points behind team-mate Saeed Ajmal, who headed the bowlers' list.

Batsman Virat Kohli moved one rung to be placed fourth in the latest ranking. Kohli has who garnered 766 points was placed alongside India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni who has lost one rank.

Josphat Ndambiri of Kenya won the Fukuoka men's marathon in Japan winning the 42.195km race in 2hrs 7mins and 36secs on 4 December 2011. Mwangi stood second. Both Ndambiri and Mwangi currently reside in Japan.

Mwangi crossed the line one minute and two seconds after Ndambiri who had opened up a sizeable lead following the 35km mark. Yuki Kawauchi of Japan finished in third place with a time of two hours, nine minutes and 57 seconds.

Spain won its fifth Davis Cup title after Rafael Nadal defeated Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro 1-6 6-4 6-1 7-6 (0) on 4 December 2011. The victory earned Nadal his first title since winning his sixth French Open in June 2011. Nadal with the victory stretched his record on clay to 16-0.

Legendary weightlifter Karnam Malleswari resigned as vice-president of the national body, Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWLF) on 1 December 2011 citing unconstitutional functioning of the body as the reason for her resignation.

Malleswari was appointed vice-president in December 2009. Olympic bronze medallist Karnam Malleswari had finished on the podium at the 2000 Sydney Games.

Belgium defeated India 4-3 in the final of the Champions Challenge hockey tournament in Johannesburg, South Africa on 4 December 2011. The victory enabled Belgium, who are already through to the 2012 London Games, to qualify for the next Champions Trophy in Australia. The Belgium sise was coached by Colin Batch.

Tom Boon scored the winning goal for Belgium and in the process became the joint top scorer of the tournament along with Justin Reid Ross of South Africa with eight goals. VR Raghunath, Sandeep Singh and Shivender Singh scored for India.

Sandeep Singh finished the tournament with seven goals, all through penalty corners, and won the Player of the Tournament award.

India beat West Indies by 34 runs to win the fifth and final cricket one-day match and recorded an emphatic 4-1 series triumph in Chennai on 11 December 2011. Electing to bat, India scored 267 runs with the loss of six wickets in the stipulated overs. Manoj Tiwary 104 and Virat Kohli 80 were the top scorers for India. In reply, West Indies reached as close as 233 in 44.1 overs. K. Pollard 119 and A Russel 53 were top scorers for West Indies.

Darren Sammy was the captain of West Indies while Virender Sehwag was the captain of Indian side for this series. Gautam Gambhir was the stand–in captain for the last one–dayer. India’s Manoj Tiwary was declared Man of The Match and Indian batsman Rohit Sharma got Man of the Series Award.

Pakistan defeated Bangladesh by seven wickets in the second and final cricket Test in Dhaka on 21 December 2011. Pakistan by defeating Bangladesh in the second test was able to to sweep the series 2-0.

Pakistan was set 103 to win after bowling Bangladesh out for 234 in its second innings and achieved the target in the final session.

India striker Sunil Chhetri was on 20 December 2011 voted Player of the Year by the All India Football Federation. He was chosen by I-League coaches from a five-player shortlist. He will receive a cash award of Rs 2 lakh and a silver plaque.

The criteria of selection were Performance for India and general conduct on and off the field.

He has also been awarded the prestigious Arjuna Award in the past.

I.M.Vijayan was the first recipient of the award in 1992. In 2010 the award was bestowed on Gouramangi Singh

The Indian women's hockey team defeated Ireland 4-1 win to clinch the bronze medal in the four-nation tournament held in Parana, Argentina in December 2011.

Indian ace badminton player and World No. 4 Saina Nehwal of India was defeated by World No. 1 Wang Yihan 18-21, 21-13, 21-13 in the women’s singles final of the $500000 BWF World Super Series badminton championship in China on 18 December 2011. In 2011 Saina won only the Swiss Open Super Series title.

The Indian team finished at the fourth position in the World Women's Team Chess Championship at Mardin,Turkey on 27 December 2011. India's chances of winning a medal was blown away following a loss to Georgia and then China. The losses by Tania Sachdev and Soumya Swaminathan of India paved the way for an easy Georgian victory in the end.

China won the gold medal with 16 points while the silver was claimed by the Russians who finished with 13 points in all. Georgia ended with the bronze while India and Ukraine were tied for the fourth spot.

The Archery Association of India (AAI) announced in late December 2011 that the 32nd Sahara senior National archery championship (recurve and compound) will be held at the JRD Tata Sports Complex, Jamshedpur from 24 to 29 January 2012. The meet is to serve as the selection trials for aspirants of a place in the Indian archery team for the first Asian Grand Prix at Bangkok scheduled to be held 14 to 20 February 2012.

The best five finishers in the men's recurve section will vie for three places in the Indian team, and the best five women will vie for one spot in the women's recurve team at a selection trials to be held at SAI, Eastern Centre, from 3 to 6 February 2012.

Indian football team defender Mahesh Gawli announced his retirement from international football on 26 December 2011. He however announced his decision to continue to play at the club level for some more years. Gawli who made his international debut in the pre-Olympic qualifier against Thailand in 1999 represented India in 82 matches.

He captained the Indian team in one match (against Malaysia) in November 2011. He had scored one goal against Bhutan in SAFF Cup in 2005.

Kerala defeated Andhra Pradesh in straight sets to lift the men's title in the 10th All-India Invitational volleyball tournament for the Vajpayee Cup on 25 December 2011. Kerala won the game 25-20, 25-18, 25-18. Karnataka outdid Tamil Nadu to occupy the third position in the men’s category.

The Kerala on the other hand defeated Central Railway (Mumbai) and to claim the titlee. Tiji Raju and N. Bijina led the turnaround as it won 20-25, 18-25, 25-23, 26-24, 15-13. The women had to come back from two sets down to take the title.

Delhi's Honey Baisoya became the youngest winner of the 22nd Goodricke East India amateur golf championship at RCGC on 25 December 2011. The 15-year-old defeated the country's No.1 amateur, S. Chikkarangappa to win 3 and 2. Both had to play two rounds of 36 holes on the final day.

Baisoya secured a winning start after making birdies on first, fourth, fifth, ninth, 12th and 15th in the first round of 18 holes where both Baisoya and Chikka halved 11 holes. Though, Chikka won on seventh, 11th and 14th, Baisoya was 2-up after the first round.

Indonesia’s experienced shuttler, Taufik Hidayat, won his first Men’s Singles title of 2011 at the 2011 $120,000 Syed Modi India Open Grand Prix Gold badminton championship when he defeated Sourabh Verma of India.

Taufik is currently World Number 12 in Men’s Singles world rankings. Hidayat who ended his title drought of 2011 with a 21-15, 21-18 triumph over Saurabh received $9,000 as the prize money.

Mumbai skipper Wasim Jaffer on 22 December 2011 overtook former teammate Amol Muzumdar (8237 runs) as the highest run-getter in Ranji Trophy. He scored a total of 8242 runs a against Muzumdar’s 8237 runs.



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