Weekly digest: Anurag Thakur's exit, Dhoni resigns as captain

Triumphs, allegations, comebacks and upsets — we take a look at the most talked about sporting moments of the week.

While Anurag Thakur was shown the door by the Supreme Court, Virat Kohli took over the captaincy from M.S. Dhoni in limited-overs, shocking many Indian cricket fans.   -  PTI

CRICKET

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, like he did with his Test retirement, surprised everyone by >stepping down as captain of India's limited-overs teams ahead of the ODIs and T20Is against England. Virat Kohli, who has played under Dhoni for the most part of his career, will take over the reins.

The Supreme Court dismantled BCCI's existing power structure in a landmark order that >led to the removal of the Board President Anurag Thakur and secretary Ajay Shirke from office with immediate effect. The Board had resisted implementing the majority of the Lodha committee's recommendations despite being told to do so by a Supreme Court order on July 18.

Hyderabd Cricket Association >expressed the inability to host the one-off Test match against Bangladesh from February 8 to 12 at the Uppal ground on Sunday. On the other hand, TNCA has told the BCCI that it cannot host to two under-19 four-day games between India and England at Chennai.

Steve Smith's men thrashed a hapless Pakistan by 222 runs in Sydney to whitewash the three Test series. It was Pakistan's fourth clean sweep in a row Down Under.

In Cape Town, South Africans routed Sri Lanka by 282 runs on a green track, in which speedster Kagiso Rabada reaped a match tally of 10 wickets. The Test was also the last for Protean pacer Kyle Abbott and ODI batsman Rilee Rossouw, who will play for English county Hampshire as a Kolpak player.

TENNIS

Roger Federer returned to the tennis court after his injury layoff at the Hopman Cup. The Swiss played singles and doubles with Belinda Bencic. But he couldn't lead Switzerland to the title which >France won it.

Novak Djokovic >beat World No. 1 Andy Murray in the Qatar Open title clash, breaking his 28-match winning streak.

Roberto Bautista Agut was >crowned the 2017 Chennai Open champion after a comprehensive 6-3, 6-4 victory over first-time finalist Daniil Medvedev. Rohan Bopanna and Jeevan Nedunchezhiyan won the doubles title in an all-Indian final against Divij Sharan and Purav Raja.

Karolina Pliskova enhanced her credentials as a contender for the Australian Open by thrashing Alize Cornet in the >final of the Brisbane International.

Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov won his first title in over two years >when he upset World No. 5 Kei Nishikori in three sets to win the Brisbane International.

FOOTBALL

The 2017 I-League began as defending champion strolled past Shillong Lajong 3-0 while, elsewhere, Federation Cup champion Mohun Bagan banked on Balwant Singh’s lone >goal to beat a fighting Churchill Brothers 1-0.

Debutant Chennai City FC hosted fellow newbie Minerva Punjab and they played out a >goalless draw.

 

The Spanish La Liga returned after its winter break and Cristiano Ronaldo began his year by scoring in the 5-0 demolition of Granada on Saturday in La Liga as Real Madrid >tied Barcelona’s Spanish record of 39 games unbeaten in all competitions.

Meanwhile, Saul Niguez scored for the second straight La Liga match and Antoine Griezmann ended his top-flight goal drought as Atletico Madrid battled to a much-needed 2-0 away victory over Eibar.

Barcelona >salvaged a 1-1 draw against Villareal after Lionel Messi hit a stunning 90th minute free-kick. But the Catalans are five point behind archrival Real Madrid, which has a game in hand.

Wayne Rooney >drew level with Bobby Charlton as Manchester United's record goal-scorer as the holders beat Reading 4-0 in the FA Cup third round. Rooney struck his 249th goal after only seven minutes at Old Trafford before he set up Anthony Martial to score the second, with Marcus Rashford netting a second-half double in a routine victory at Old Trafford.

OTHERS

Two-time Olympic decathlon gold medalist, Ashton Eaton, along with his wife, heptathlete Brianne Theisen-Eaton, who won the bronze medal at the Rio Games, have >announced their retirements on Wednesday. Ashton holds the world record in both the decathlon and indoor heptathlon events.

Pankaj Advani downed two-time defending champion Aditya Mehta 5-1 in a flawless display to clinch the third Kolkata Open National Invitational Snooker Championship on Sunday.