RCB vs MI: Virat Kohli goes past 10,000 T20 runs

Virat Kohli on Sunday reached a coveted milestone of 10,000-run mark in all forms of T20 cricket (international, domestic and franchise) during Royal Challengers Bangalore’s IPL match against Mumbai Indians at the Dubai International Stadium.

Playing in his 314th T20 contest, Kohli pulled his India team-mate Jasprit Bumrah for a six to get the milestone in the fourth over after RCB were sent in to bat.

Kohli, who is set to step down from RCB captaincy at the end of this season, had come into the match 13 short of 10,000 runs.

The 32-year-old has played 298 innings before Sunday’s match and has scored runs at an average of 41.61 with the help of five hundreds and 73 fifties. His highest individual score was 113. His career strike-rate has been an impressive 134 plus.

Building more inclusive, welcoming schools for LGBTQ+ children

Earlier this month, while speaking at the Shiksha Parv conclave, the prime minister emphasised the need for inclusive and equitable education. In the same week, the Kerala High Court brought attention to medical textbooks that described non-binary gender identities as “offensive perversions” and “mental disorders”. This had continued despite Kerala becoming the first state to adopt a transgender policy six years ago. A similar concern over “queerphobia” in medical education was raised by the Madras HC earlier this year.

Fitness alert: Start your yoga journey with these easy tips

Yoga is often considered to be all about tough, limb-twisting poses. But, yoga expert Abhishek Otwal says that it is not about “touching your toes, or stretching 98 degrees to your northeast”, rather an easy process of uniting with yourself – “using your breath, body, and mind“.

The expert adds that it does not matter if you’re not flexible or are starting your yoga journey at the age of 40. “This fitness journey will bring much joy and relaxation to you,” he says.

As such, he shares some easy tips for beginners

*Warm up – Gentle warm up exercises help the body to loosen up and prepare it for the asanas. Rotate your neck, both clockwise and anticlockwise, and pump your shoulders to relieve any stiffness and shrug off the lethargy.

*Although it’s best to practice yoga early in the morning, but any time of the day is fine as long as you are regular with it. “Don’t feel pressurised and over-exert your body right in the beginning. Your flexibility and efficiency will improve with everyday practice. Always finish with Yoga Nidra (sleep meditation) for a few minutes, as it helps to cool down the body,” he suggests.

*Whenever you start with yoga, try to start with easy asanas and postures such as downward-facing dog, tree pose, child’s pose, and savasana. “In each pose, try to focus on pressing your hands or feet into the floor, lengthening your spine, and relaxing your hips. If you keep this in mind as you practice, you will be working with every pose exactly as the most devoted practitioners do. There is no need to rush or try to jump into more complex poses,” he adds.

*Always practice yoga on an empty stomach or at least 2-3 hours after your last meal. When practicing yoga, you are much more in tune with your body’s subtle feelings than at any other point, and practicing with food in the stomach inevitably leads to discomfort and feeling unwell. “Eating just before practicing can lead to feeling of heaviness, and can disrupt the digestion process as well. It is also advised to drink at least three to four liters of water during the day in order to flush toxins that are released while practicing out of the body,” he says.

*Breathing plays an important role in yoga as the practice is all about finding a healthier, deeper harmony between our body and mind, and breathing is central to this.

*It’s always best to start doing yoga under the guidance of a qualified yoga teacher who can guide you through the correct way of doing each and every technique. This would help you learn yoga asanas properly and avoid injuries.

Xiaomi Mi Band 6 review: Still the best fitness band in the market?

When it comes to tracking daily steps and basic fitness, the Mi Band remains one of the most reliable options in the market. The latest Mi Band 6 builds on this with some big changes. For one, it has a higher price tag at Rs 3,499 compared to the Rs 2,499 tag of the Mi Band 5. Second, it now comes with a bigger 1.56-inch display compared to the 1.1-inch display on the earlier band. Finally, it adds an important change in the form of support for blood oxygen monitoring, which has become a much sought-after feature in the time of Covid-19.

But do the changes justify the higher price? And what makes the Mi Band 6 a better pick compared to the countless fitness trackers and watches in the market? Let’s take a look in our review

Xiaomi Mi Band 6 review: What’s good?

When I first saw the Mi Band 6 and it was hard not to notice the larger screen. The AMOLED display with 326 pixels per inch (PPI) and a maximum brightness of 450 nits is legible even in harsh sunlight. In fact, I would say the display is a bit too bright, especially if you plan on wearing this for sleep tracking.

But the bigger display also means that the Mi Band 6 is now a little bit more suited to display notifications from messaging apps such as WhatsApp. It’s not perfect, and the text is still small, but this definitely adds more usefulness to the device. The Mi Band 6 is now compatible with the Xiaomi Wear app, which was powering fitness watches from the brand.

Users can go into the Xiaomi Wear app and turn on phone notifications, app notifications, etc for them to appear on the device. Mi Band 6 of course connects with Mi Fit app and now the Strava app as well. It is also capable of auto-detecting six fitness modes, including walking, running, cycling, indoor rowing, and elliptical.

The band’s setup now includes a SPO2 monitor for tracking blood oxygen levels. Just make sure you wear the band tightly and stay still when measuring these. The two three times I used this feature, my blood oxygen levels were usually 98-99 per cent, so I’m guessing this works accurately.

As always with steps, the Mi Band 6 remains accurate, and if I may say so, a bit stingy. I did not notice any jump in steps (maybe 3-4) while sitting in a car. The band’s step count was bang on, especially on days where I knew I had not been very active. And the band figured out when I had started walking, as the auto-detect feature worked spot on. Though it usually detected around 5-10 minutes I had started walking.

By the way, if the auto-detect does come on, and you’re not really in the middle of a workout, say you had just stepped out for grocery shopping, you can choose an option for the band to ignore these and turn off auto-detect for an hour or so.

The Mi Band 6 can latch onto your phone’s GPS systems and detect the directions when you are walking or out on a run. Though, you will then need to take your phone along. If you don’t take the phone, then the GPS routes are not recorded.

The two-three walks I took with the Mi Band 6 were pretty accurate. Another feature I really appreciated was that the band would immediately pause if and when I took a break during exercise or walk. I was mighty impressed by the accuracy given this is still a budget fitness tracker.

I also took the Mi Band 6 for my outdoor cycle rides, and here’s where I faced some issues. But the band was accurate when it came to distance, elevation during the cycle ride. I also used the band to track indoor cycling sessions, and while it does not show any distance, the calories burnt were in line with what my cycle was showing.

The fitness band is swim-proof and water-resistant. I have not been able to take it for a swim, but I often wore it during baths, and it continues to work fine. The band’s sleep tracker remains accurate as always, one of the best in the business. For instance, when I slept at 1.30 am recently, and woke up early, the band has marked that day as ‘lack of sleep’ and I would wholly agree 100 percent.

The fitness band can also track menstrual cycles for women as well. One can add the dates of their last period and average cycle duration to the Xiaomi Wear app to see the prediction. The band will also reflect when your period is about to happen, ovulation days, etc. It also comes with stress monitoring, breathing exercises for those who wish to use such features.

Durand Cup: Army Green enter quarters, FC Goa put five past Jamshedpur FC

Deepak Singh scored the solitary goal to take Army Green to the Durand Cup quarterfinals after the former champions beat Sudeva Delhi FC 1-0 in the final Group B game at the Mohun Bagan ground, here on Friday.

Jamshedpur FC were also playing their final game simultaneously against FC Goa but they lost 0-5, allowing Army Green to go through along with group toppers FC Goa.

In the initial quarter of the first half, both Army Green and Sudeva created opportunities but it was all Greens after that.

In the ninth minute, the Greens had their first major scoring opportunity when Lallawmkima took a brilliant header, but could not go past Sudeva keeper Sachin Jha.

Shubham Rana took another shot at goal on the rebound, but Sachin came up with another brilliant save.

The ball hovered around the Sudeva goal for most part of the first half. Thirty minutes into the game, two back-to-back corners almost got the Greens on the board, but Sachin made sure it was goalless at half time.

Sudeva looked all charged up in the second half. In the 46th minute, William Pauliankhum had the ball just a few yards away from the goal but failed to score.

Army Green came back strong and in the 51st minute, courtesy a nice set up and a wonderful assist by Dip Mazumdar, Deepak tapped the ball into the net.

The Delhi side did have a few chances to equalise but they could not go past Army Green’s defence to end the campaign with three losses.

In the day’s second game, FC Goa blanked JFC 5-0 to finish on top with nine points and push their ISL rivals out of the tournament.

As children come back to school, they will need both time and patience

While the pandemic and associated school closure has affected us in many ways, loss of learning among children is emerging among the most explicit and worrying aspects. This learning loss comprises two dimensions — one is the learning that has not happened due to school closures. To this loss of curricular learning is added the “forgetting” of what they already knew. This forgetting is not unusual — it is clearly seen after long holidays, and is generally made up during the first few weeks of schooling. However, when this loss is of foundational abilities like reading, writing and basic arithmetic, it deeply hinders further learning.

Loss of learning due to school closure during the pandemic has been seen the world over. Quantified in terms of months that children are “behind” their class, it varies from less than a month after 11 weeks of school closure to four years after 57 weeks of school closure. According to the report, “What’s next? Lessons on Education Recovery” by UNICEF, UNESCO, World Bank and OECD, among measures taken to alleviate this loss, 41 per cent of countries reported extending the academic year while 42 per cent reported prioritising certain curriculum areas or skills. Over two-thirds of countries reported implementing remedial measures to address learning gaps for primary and secondary school students when schools reopened.

Our primary schools have been closed for about 500 days, which translates to over 70 weeks of schooling. Given the amount of time schools have been closed, as we reopen now, we cannot start with the regular curriculum as if it is the beginning of a regular academic year. We need to think deeply about what should be done. This question is particularly moot for primary schools, where the foundations of later learning are established. To answer this question, it is necessary to examine how children learn in primary schools. Children learn not only through interaction in the classroom but also through observation, dialogue and exploration through unstructured experiences. Thus, given that we have to make up for over 70 weeks of school closure, we must not hurry children into the learning process. Not only the learning associated with the current class but relearning from the previous classes must be in focus.

The next question is — what is important to learn? The learning outcomes for each class have been clearly indicated by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), which is the nodal academic institution for school education at the national level. These learning outcomes focus on the abilities children have to acquire as opposed to the content of textbooks. Thus, reading a poem is important, memorising the content of the poem is not important. Being able to add is important, not adding all the problems at the end of the chapter in the textbook. And language and mathematics are most important, since they enable the learning of other subjects. Thus, learning outcomes of specific subjects must be prioritised, and the curriculum reset for at least a couple of years.

When schools reopen, differences in the learning levels of children will be starker than before. A solution that is deceptively simple is that of placing children in groups according to their current learning levels. Termed ability grouping, it seems like the perfect solution, with children starting with similar sets of abilities and proceeding thereon. However, the approach of grouping students based on their abilities often results in “labelling”, adversely impacting their self-esteem and worth; research studies have found students in “low” ability groups have significantly lower self-esteem than low achievers in mixed ability classes, and are also likely to have behavioural problems. This approach also neglects to take into account the fact that children learn from each other. It is not unusual to have children at different levels in the same classroom. Some schools use this difference as a resource, using sets of teaching-learning materials that children use in groups under the guidance of teachers. As children attain pre-set learning milestones, they move onto the next level. This approach using peer learning benefits all.

When we examine the available data from various studies on the learning levels that our children are at, it is clear that at the primary level, the focus ought to be on foundational abilities. For instance, Azim Premji Foundation’s field study in January 2021 across 44 districts covering five states indicated that nearly three-fourths of the children in Class II have lost the ability to identify a word in print; in Class IV, for instance, a majority of them have lost the ability to express the gist of a poem while in Class VI more than half the children lost the ability to write their views on various events happening around them. The recently released SCHOOL survey carried out across 15 states shows that overall 42 per cent of children in urban areas and 48 per cent in rural areas are unable to read more than a few words. These studies indicate that most children across the primary grades have lost the basic abilities required to continue their learning journeys.

The curricular priorities will have to be set specific to the stages of schooling. If the priority at primary level is on recovery of foundational abilities in language and mathematics, the focus in middle school should be an integrated approach to achieving learning outcomes across subjects, while at the secondary and senior secondary level, core learning outcomes must be identified and mapped to textbooks; and for this level additional material could be developed, given that students at this stage are capable of some independent study.

As persons closest to learners, teachers must be given the autonomy and support to determine what children learn and when, within the broad contours of the curriculum. Changes in curriculum and the approach to teaching-learning would require orientation of teachers, and materials to support their work with children. This material must be attractive and meaningful, related to children’s context, while encouraging them to speak about visuals, read small pieces of text, respond to interesting questions, and perform simple exercises. This material must cover a range of abilities so the teacher can use similar resources for the entire class.

To track recovery from learning loss, periodic assessment would be necessary — this must be done in a non-threatening way, by the teacher through observation and interaction with her students. The stress of regular testing must not demotivate children from learning.

Finally, it is important to acknowledge that school closure has resulted in more than learning loss. It has led to a disconnect from the processes of schooling. Children have experienced loss; some have entered the workforce while others have been given responsibilities within the household. The most important thing that must be done when schools reopen is to welcome them back — to listen to their stories, to give them time to settle back into routines, to involve them in activities that allow them to express themselves. Time and patience may help us find ways to compensate not only the learning loss but also to change our schools for the better.

‘Where’s my baby?’: Kareena Kapoor poses with son Jeh’s empty high chair during vacation

Kareena Kapoor Khan is on her birthday vacation with her husband Saif Ali Khan and children Taimur Ali Khan and Jeh Ali Khan. The actor is playing her social media game well and has been sharing sneak peeks from her relax time by the beach. But, we do miss the photos of Jeh, Taimur, and Saif.

On Friday morning, Kareena shared a selfie from her breakfast table. Jeh’s high chair is seen next to her as the actor asks, “Where is my baby?”

On Thursday night too, Kareena posted a selfie with a ‘Sweet Dreams’ sticker.

See latest photos from Kareena Kapoor’s family vacation:

Kareena has not disclosed the location on the family vacation. The Pataudis were in the Maldives just a few weeks back to celebrate Saif Ali Khan’s 51st birthday.

Kareena will turn 41 on September 21 and was spotted with her two sons, Taimur and Jeh, and husband Saif at the Mumbai airport on Wednesday. The actor returned to the sets of Laal Singh Chaddha with Aamir Khan a few days earlier. The film is supposed to release later this year.

Carli Lloyd scores 5 goals, US women rout Paraguay 9-0

No Carli Lloyd isn’t reconsidering her retirement — even after a five-goal game.

Lloyd hit a career high for goals in the U.S. national team’s 9-0 rout of Paraguay on Thursday night. The 39-year-old forward has just three more games with the team before she walks away from the game.

“Maybe for a split second,” Lloyd said when asked if performances like that make her want to stick around. “And then I go back to reality.”

Lloyd scored a pair of goals in the opening five minutes, and added her third and fourth before halftime as the United States built a 6-0 lead. She added her final goal in the 61st.

Lloyd has 133 international goals in 313 appearances with the national team. She moved in front of Kristine Lilly for third on the career list.

“She’s an absolute legend, just being on the field, she’s a threat, no matter who we play, when we play, where we play,” U.S. coach Vlatko Andonovski said. “Her mentality is something that’s unseen. She’s just hungry for scoring goals, just hungry to get better, and whether we play for a medal or we play Paraguay, it makes no difference. She wants to score goals.”

Lloyd’s scoring outburst was reminiscent of the 2015 World Cup final, when she scored three goals in the first 16 minutes against Japan. She announced she plans to retire from soccer after the team’s four post-Olympic games.

“That was fun,” she said about the game. “I don’t know, I’m just trying to savor it because I want time to go a little bit slower, because one game is down and I have three left.”

It was Lloyd’s first career five-goal game. She has nine career hat tricks, one fewer than Mia Hamm.

The five goals matched the U.S. record for a single game, a milestone most recently reached by Alex Morgan against Thailand during the 2019 World Cup. No player has had six.

“I wish I could do it forever, but all good things eventually come to an end and I definitely am for sure retiring,” Lloyd said. “I’m not going to come back out of retirement but you know I’m going to be the biggest cheerleader for this team and really excited to see them continue to keep crushing it.”

Andi Sullivan scored 25th before Lynn Williams’ blast from distance in the 30th made it 4-0.

Sullivan added a second goal early in the second half, before Lloyd’s fifth. Tobin Heath scored the final goal in the 86th.

The United States is in the midst of a four-game post Olympics tour. The Americans won the bronze medal in Tokyo, a somewhat disappointing finish for the defending World Cup champions.

It is the first time that the United States has faced Paraguay, which has never played in the Olympics or the World Cup.

Paraguay lost 7-0 to Japan in April. It was the team’s only previous match this year after three scheduled games against Colombia were cancelled because of the coronavirus.
Forward Christen Press was not with the national team because she is taking time off to focus on her mental health. Alyssa Naeher, Julie Ertz, Sam Mewis and Megan Rapinoe were not on the roster because of injury.

The United States plays Paraguay again on Tuesday in Cincinnati. The team is scheduled to host South Korea twice next month before a possible road trip to Australia in November.

Pro volley league set to resume after a two-year break and in new ‘avatar’

The Prime Volleyball League (PVL) is expected to resume soon after a two-year hiatus and will be a six-team affair. The PVL follows the National Basketball Association (NBA) model in which franchise owners are also stakeholders.

Bengaluru Torpedoes will be a new franchise and join Calicut Heroes, Kochi Blue Spikers, Ahmedabad Defenders, Hyderabad Black Hawks and Chennai Blitz who changed their names from Chennai Spartans in 2019 and were the champions.

The dates for the auction and the schedule for the season will be announced by the PVL soon.

To provide opportunities for both upcoming players and coaching staff, the PVL has tied up with Piston Des Sports to create a portal (www.pistondessport.com) to register and be part of the auction.

“We have talent in the country and PVL will be the right kind of platform to grow. This kind of structure, where franchises are committed for the long term gives the game an opportunity to grow in a sustained manner, and that is the best thing possible for Indian volleyball,” said Joy Bhattacharya, CEO, PVL.

“Our first association began in 2019 was very successful. This is a win-win for both franchises and the players,” said Thomas Muthoot, owner of Kochi Blue Spikers.

In 2019, Pro Volleyball League with six teams was well accepted by fans. Instead of Bengaluru Torpedoes, U Mumba were the sixth team then and played on a single round-robin basis consisting of 15 five-set matches but was restricted to two centres, Kochi and Chennai, instead of home and away format. Chennai Spartans emerged champions.

In 2011, Indian Volleyball League with six teams was launched in a humble way but folded up soon.

David Lee, a member of the gold medal winning USA team in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, Serbia’s Novica Bjelica, USA’s Paul Lotman, Canada’s Rudy Verhoeff and Latvia’s Ruslans Sorokins all Olympians were international stars who played in the 2019 pro league.

Ankita Lokhande responds to demand of Pavitra Rishta’s boycott, trolling: ‘Can’t go about telling people I am nice’

It has been a devastating one year for fans and loved ones of Sushant Singh Rajput. After the actor’s death last year, the release of Pavitra Rishta’s web version is bittersweet for those who have followed the show for Manav and Archana (played by Sushant Singh Rajput and Ankita Lokhande). As Ankita reprises her role in the web show, Shaheer Sheikh is taking charge as Manav. While fans of the show are excited to see the new chapter in this love story, a section of the audience has been demanding its boycott claiming no one can ever replace Sushant in the lead. They have also accused the makers of manipulation by bringing the show back.

Ankita Lokhande recently chatted with indianexpress.com and discussed the trolling she received personally and for the show. Sharing that she doesn’t really want to comment on people who want to boycott the show, she says, “That’s their wish”.

She, however, has a beautiful message for fans who have waited for the show. “There are people who really love Archana and Manav. And I am so grateful for them to have showered us with so much love. We got this opportunity to entertain them again. Pavitra Rishta is all about love and has beautiful sentiments attached to it, not just for me but many in the audience. I hope they like the show once again and give us equal love,” she said.

While she is hesitant to speak about the trolling she received after Sushant’s death, Ankita said that negativity has become a part of social media. “Honestly, social media has brought us closer to our fans but also there is so much trolling involved. At the end of the day, everyone has a choice. I cannot go about telling people that I am nice and they should love me. I will go about living my life and I cannot worry about people judging me. I never have. My family is my strength and I can fight anything or anyone with their support.”

The actor also feels women are more vulnerable on social media. “Don’t follow me if you don’t like me. Also, I am fine with what you tell me but when they drag your family, it’s unacceptable. It really gets bitter then,” she says about the trolls.

She also says that Pavitra Rishta returns in a new mould to satisfy a new audience on the digital medium. “When you talk about Pavitra Rishta, you talk about love. It’s all the first time a love story will come on the web which has no kissing, touching — the couple stays quite apart (laughs). There is a section of my fans who are in their 60s, 70s, who may not have still entered the digital space. Also, the young generation is hooked on to the space and thus they will get introduced to Pavitra Rishta. I can confidently say that you can watch our show with your family. It will give you a very homely, relatable feel.”

Starting September 15, Pavitra Rishta 2 will stream on ZEE5.