Weekly Digest (September 14-20): From IPL's return to Thomas and Uber Cup's postponement

From the Indian Premier League (IPL) returning to the Thomas and Uber Cup being postponed yet again, here are the top sports headlines from the week gone by.

Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians faced off in the 2020 Indian Premier League's season opener.

The 2020 Indian Premier League (IPL) finally began in the United Arab Emirates on Saturday as the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) beat the Mumbai Indians (MI) by five wickets in the season-opener in Abu Dhabi.

Meanwhile, the 2020 Thomas and Uber Cup and Denmark Open 2 were postponed to 2021 because of multiple withdrawals by nations due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, the Denmark Open will go ahead in Odense.

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READ | Weekly Digest (September 6 - September 13): From Yuvraj Singh's comeback to Osaka's US Open win

Here's a wrap-up of all the major sports news and updates from the week (September 14 to 20) that passed:

CRICKET

Marcus Stoinis and Kagiso Rabada starred in Delhi Capitals' thrilling Super Over win over Kings XI Punjab in Dubai. (REPORT)

Ambati Rayudu and Faf du Plessis slammed brilliant half-centuries as Chennai Super Kings beat Mumbai Indians by five wickets in the opening game of IPL 2020 at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. (REPORT)

Chennai Super Kings head coach Stephen Fleming confirmed that star all-rounder Dwayne Bravo won't be available for at least two games. (REPORT)

Cricket coach and mind guru Paddy Upton believes hosting the IPL inside a bio-bubble in the United Arab Emirates could pose a threat to mental health of those participating in the competition. (REPORT)

The ICC faces a serious challenge in striking a financially viable balance between the thriving T20 leagues and international cricket over the next decade, says renowned coach Andy Flower. He also feels it is important for stars like Virat Kohli to keep “talking up” the five-day format. (REPORT)

Indian captain Kohli maintained his top rank in the latest ICC ODI rankings for batsmen. (REPORT)

Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell celebrates a stunning ODI century against England.

 

Twin centuries from Alex Carey and Glenn Maxwell inspired Australia to a dramatic three-wicket victory over England on Wednesday as the touring side clinched the One-Day International series 2-1. (REPORT)

England all-rounder David Willey has tested positive for COVID-19, the player announced on social media on Thursday. (REPORT)

FOOTBALL

Two goals from Sadio Mane just after halftime eased champion Liverpool to a 2-0 win over 10-man Chelsea in the Premier League season's first heavyweight clash at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. (REPORT)

Tottenham Hotspur has signed forward Gareth Bale and left-back Sergio Reguilon from Spanish champion Real Madrid, the Premier League club announced in a statement. (REPORT)

Supporters returned to the Bundesliga for the first time since coronavirus restrictions began in March but none of them saw their teams win opening games of the new season on Saturday. (REPORT)

Liverpool has signed Spain midfielder Thiago Alcantara from Bayern Munich on a long-term contract. (REPORT)

Spanish football body La Liga has rescheduled four matches in the top two divisions for the second week in a row and criticised the national federation (RFEF) over its ban on games on Mondays and Fridays. (REPORT)

The I-League Qualifiers, featuring five teams seeking promotion to the second division of Indian football, will begin on October 8. (REPORT)

WATCH |

Gareth Bale one of the world's best - Lampard

East Bengal has submitted the Invitation to Bid (ITD) documents to Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL) to participate in the Indian Super League (ISL) 2020-21. The club took to twitter to make the announcement. (REPORT)

The Premier League has urged the British government to stay committed to its plans for a controlled return of fans into stadiums from October 1. (REPORT)

TENNIS 

The French Open will allow only 5,000 spectators per day following a recent spike in COVID-19 cases in the country. (REPORT)

Andy Murray, Eugenie Bouchard and Tsvetana Pironkova have received wildcard entries to the French Open. (REPORT)

Defending champion Rafael Nadal crashed out of the Italian Open with a stunning straight-set defeat to Diego Schwartzman in the quarterfinals. (REPORT)

A lingering lower back problem has forced Jo-Wilfried Tsonga out of his home Grand Slam at the French Open and the rest of 2020. (REPORT)

The men's ATP Tour and women's WTA Tour have announced the cancellation of this year's Kremlin Cup in Moscow due to the rising COVID-19 infection rate in the Russian capital. (REPORT)

Rafael Nadal suffered a shock loss at the hands of Diego Schwartzman in the Italian Open quarterfinals.

 

BADMINTON

The Badminton World Federation (BWF) announced that the Thomas and Uber Cup will be postponed to next year after a series of withdrawals due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (REPORT)

India’s leading men’s doubles shuttler R. Satwiksairaj will return to training soon after having tested negative for COVID-19. (REPORT)

World champion P.V. Sindhu has pulled out of the Denmark Open scheduled to be held in Odense from October 13 to 18. (REPORT)

Sports Authority of India (SAI) will fund badminton player Kidambi Srikanth's participation at the Denmark Open which is scheduled to be held from October 13 to 18 in Odense. (REPORT

HOCKEY

Equal opportunities like the men’s hockey team and a robust junior program have been major contributing factors in the improved performance of the women’s national side, feels skipper Rani Rampal. (REPORT)

India hockey skipper Manpreet Singh says going through a stressful isolation period while recovering from coronavirus has made him a mentally strong player who is now equipped to tackle any situation on the field. (REPORT)

BOXING 

The Boxing Federation of India extended the tenure of its present set of office-bearers by three months. The four-year tenure of the BFI office-bearers was supposed to get over on September 25. However, the conduct of the election was impeded by the pandemic. (REPORT)

ALSO READ | IPL 2020: KXIP's Ravi Bishnoi makes debut against DC

Boxer Vikas Krishan will train in Virginia for two-and-a-half months "as part of his preparations for the Olympics". The Government has approved Rs 17.5 lakh under Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) for the tour. (REPORT)

MOTORSPORT

Toyota celebrated a third successive victory in the Le Mans 24 Hours endurance race on Sunday with Kazuki Nakajima taking the chequered flag in the number eight car to complete a personal hat-trick. (REPORT)

Yamaha's Maverick Vinales claimed his first win of the season in the Emilia Romagna MotoGP at Misano World Circuit on Sunday, after race leader Francesco Bagnaia of Pramac Racing crashed with seven laps remaining. (REPORT)

ATHLETICS 

Lamine Diack, the former head of world athletics' governing body, was convicted in France of corruption in a Russian doping scandal and sentenced to spend at least two years in jail. (REPORT)

Athletics Federation of India said it has requested the government to give priority to Olympic-bound athletes when a COVID-19 vaccine is available. (REPORT)

Indian long distance runner Murali Kumar Gavit’s 10,000m bronze medal in the Asian Athletics Championship last year could be upgraded to silver after Bahrain's Hassan Chani, who finished second, was disqualified. (REPORT)

The Sports Authority of India, in accordance with Unlock 4.0 guidelines issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, has released a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for resumption of sporting activities in all its centers. (REPORT)