2021, The Year In Sports: January recall

2021, The Year In Sports: From India beating Australia at the Gabba to Burnley ending Liverpool's home streak, here is a look at the top sporting moments from January.

Team India with the Border-Gavaskar Trophy

Fortress Gabba breached! India, thanks to invaluable knocks from Shubman Gill (91), Cheteshwar Pujara (56) and Rishabh Pant (89*), stunned Australia to script a historical three-wicket victory on day five. The visitor retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy with a series scoreline of 2-1.   -  Getty Images

From India beating Australia at the Gabba to Burnley ending Liverpool's home streak, here is a look at the top sporting moments from January.

Jan 5: Football legend Bell dies aged 74

Manchester City legend and England international Colin Bell died after a short illness. Bell scored 152 goals for City in 492 appearances and helped the club to its First Division title in 1967-68. He also earned 48 caps for England.

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Jan 7: Polosak becomes first woman umpire in men’s Test

Australian Claire Polosak became the first woman umpire to officiate in a men’s Test match when she took on the duties as fourth umpire on Day one of the third Test between India and Australia in Sydney. In 2019, Polosak had become the first woman umpire to officiate in a men’s ODI when she took on on-field duties for the World Cricket League (WCL) Division 2 final between Namibia and Oman.

Claire Polosak

Fourth umpire Claire Polosak   -  Getty Images

 

Jan 7: City hands United Carabao Cup semifinal defeat

Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City beat Manchester United 2-0 in the Carabao Cup semifinal at Old Trafford. After a goalless first half, John Stones netted one in five minutes into the second before Fernandinho’s goal sealed the win in the 83rd minute, handing the Red Devils their fourth semifinal loss in 12 months.

 

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Jan 11: Ashwin and Vihari save Sydney Test

Hanuma Vihari and Ravichandran Ashwin battled hard for an unbeaten 62-run partnership off 259 balls for the sixth wicket to draw the third Test in Sydney against Australia and keep the four-match series level at 1-1.

Ravi Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari braved injury and a hostile Australian bowling attack to salvage a draw on day five of the third India vs Australia Test in Sydney.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Jan 15: Natarajan, Washington sizzle on Test debut

Pacer T Natarajan and spinner Washington Sundar made their Test debuts as a depleted India took the field against Australia in the fourth Test at the Gabba in Brisbane. Natarajan took the wickets of Matthew Wade and centurion Marnus Labuschagne, while Washington took the prized wicket of Steven Smith.

Jan 15: Arjun Tendulkar makes T20 debut

Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar’s son Arjun Tendulkar made his T20 debut for Mumbai against Haryana in a Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy fixture. The 21-year-old picked up one for 34 in three overs as Mumbai suffered a thumping eight-wicket defeat.

Jan 16: Holloway thrashes Kattar as fans return

The UFC on ABC: Holloway vs Kattar main card event saw the most decorated UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway thrash Calvin Kattar via unanimous decision as fans were in attendance for the first time since March 2020. A number of records tumbled as Holloway landed a record 445 significant strikes during the bout, while his 141 strikes in the fourth round set the record for the most in a single round.

Jan 19: India breaches Gabba fortress

Australia’s unbeaten streak at the Gabba in Brisbane, which dated to 1988, came to a dramatic end as India overhauled the target of 328 with three wickets remaining on the fifth day of the fourth Test to clinch the series 2-1.

Rishabh Pant of India celebrates victory with his team mates after day five of the 4th Test Match in the series between Australia and India at The Gabba.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Jan 20: Malinga announces retirement from franchise cricket

Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga called time on his career as franchise cricketer after Mumbai Indians released him ahead of the IPL season. The 37-year-old, the leading wicket-taker in the IPL with 170 scalps from 122 matches, had retired from ODIs in 2019 and Tests in 2011.

Jan 20: Juventus wins Italian Super Cup

Cristiano Ronaldo and Alvaro Morata’s goals helped Juventus beat Napoli 2-0 to win the Super Cup and avenge its Coppa Italia final loss last season.

Jan 21: Burnley ends Liverpool’s unbeaten home streak

Burnley stunned defending champion Liverpool 1-0 at Anfield to snap the Reds’ 68-match unbeaten home streak in the Premier League. Ashley Barnes scored from the spot in the 83rd minute to hand Liverpool its first loss at home since April 2017.

Burnley stunned defending champion Liverpool 1-0 at Anfield.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Jan 22: Sindhu loses in Toyota Thailand Open quarters

Indian shuttler P V Sindhu lost to fourth seed Ratchanok Intanon 13-21, 9-21 in the quarterfinal of the Toyota Thailand Open. Intanon had also knocked out Saina Nehwal in straight games in the first round of the tournament.

Jan 23: Indian doubles pairs crash out in semis at Toyota Thailand Open

Men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty lost their semifinal clash against Malaysia’s Aaron Chia and Wooi Yik Soh 18-21, 18-21, while the mixed doubles pairing of Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponnappa also exited the tournament in the last-four stage.

Jan 24: Poirier stuns McGregor at UFC 257

The lightweight contender stunned Conor McGregor at UFC 257 Main Event with a second round TKO victory in a rematch from 2014 which McGregor had won.

Jan 25: Axelsen, Marin reign supreme in Thailand

Fourth seed Viktor Axelsen and sixth seed Carolina Marin won the men’s singles and women’s singles titles, respectively, at the Toyota Thailand Open, to bag back to back titles in the country after having won the Yonex Thailand Open earlier in the month.

Jan 25: Chelsea sacks Lampard halfway through season

Chelsea sacked manager Frank Lampard after the club lost five of its last eight Premier League games and slipped to ninth place on the points table. Despite benefiting from $300 million being spent on new player acquisitions, Lampard, who scored 211 goals for the club between 2001-14, couldn’t replicate his success as player in his managerial role.

Sacked Chelsea coach Frank Lampard   -  Leicester City

 

Jan 27: Manchester United suffers shock defeat to Sheffield United

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United was stunned 2-1 by last-placed Sheffield United at Old Trafford. The defeat was the first for the Red Devils since their November 1 home loss to Arsenal.

Jan 29: Chaudhary wins gold at Asian Online Shooting Championship

Saurabh Chaudhary shot 588 to secure the gold in 10m air pistol, while Sarabjot Singh took the bronze with 582. In the women’s event, Manu Bhaker won bronze with a score of 578.

Jan 30: Medal rush for Indians at Asian Online Shooting Championship

Indians Divyansh Singh Panwar (632.4), Arjun Babuta (630.1), Deepak Kumar (628.8) finished on the podium in the men’s 10m air rifle event at the Asian Shooting Championship in New Delhi. Rajeshwari Kumari won gold, while Shreyasi Singh and Manisha Keer took silver and bronze, respectively, in the women’s trap event. In the men’s trap event, Kynan Chenai and Prithviraj Tondaiman won gold and silver, respectively.

Jan 30: Indians shine in first Asian Online Shooting Championship

The Indian shooting contingent topped the medal tally at the first Asian Online Shooting Championship organised by the Kuwait Shooting Federation. India bagged 11 medals, including four gold, two silver and five bronze in the 22-nation tournament that saw 274 shooters participate.

Jan 30: Ranji Trophy cancelled for the first time in 87 years

The BCCI decided not to hold the Ranji Trophy for the first time since the iconic tournament began in 1934. The decision came after the Board decided that a two-month long bio-bubble over the course of the tournament during COVID-19 would not be feasible and instead chose to conduct the 50-over Vijay Hazare Trophy.

Jan 31: Tamil Nadu bags second Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy title

Proud moment: The victorious Tamil Nadu team.   -  Picture Courtesy: BCCI / Domestic

 

The Dinesh Karthik-led Tamil Nadu team defeated Baroda by seven wickets in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy final at Ahmedabad to clinch its second title after having won the tournament’s inaugural 2006-07 edition.

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