January 2015

BADMINTON
Syed Modi International Badminton Championships
Defending champion Saina Nehwal defeated reigning world champion Carolina Marin of Spain in the final to lift the women’s singles title. The tournament was held in Lucknow. Parupalli Kashyap beat K. Srikanth to win men’s singles crown.

CRICKET
South Africa-West Indies Test series
Opener Dean Elgar hit an unbeaten 60 as South Africa coasted to a comfortable eight-wicket win over the West Indies in the final test at Newlands, to take the three-match series 2-0 and retain their ranking as the top side in Tests.  South Africa had won by an innings and 220 runs in the first Test in Pretoria. The second Test in Port Elizabeth was a rain-affected draw.

New Zealand-Sri Lanka Test Series
New Zealand started their 2015 campaign on a winning note as they decimated Sri Lanka by 193 runs in the second Test at the Basin Reserve to clinch a whitewash in the two match Test series.

Australia-India Test Series
India salvaged a draw against Australia in the fourth and final Test at Sydney. Aussies regained the Border-Gavaskar trophy after clinching the series 2-0.

Fastest ODI century record
AB de Villiers cemented his status as the world’s premier limited-overs batsman by leading South Africa to victory with the fastest ODI century in Johannesburg.  Against a shell-shocked West Indies bowling attack, De Villiers broke both the fastest half-ton and century records, reaching his 50 in just 16 balls, before notching up an unbelievable century in just 31 balls.  The new record beat New Zealand batsman Corey Anderson’s 36-ball knock, also made against the West Indies in 2014.

FOOTBALL
FIFA Ballon d’Or award
Cristiano Ronaldo has won the FIFA Ballon d’Or award for 2014, earning the title of world’s best football player for a third time.  He beat Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and four-time winner Lionel Messi in a vote of national team captains and coaches from FIFA’s 209-member countries, plus selected journalists.

Ronaldo retained football’s highest individual honour after scoring 61 goals for Real Madrid and Portugal last year. His record tally of 17 in a Champions League season helped his club win an unprecedented 10th European Cup title.

Joachim Loew was voted coach of the year for guiding the national team to its first World Cup title since 1990, and first major trophy in 18 years.

Germany midfielder Nadine Kessler beat two former winners—United States forward Abby Wambach and Marta of Brazil—to be named the best women’s player in 2014.

TENNIS
Hopman Cup
Agnieszka Radwanska beat world number one Serena Williams to help Poland win its first Hopman Cup title in Perth, Australia,

VOLLEYBALL
National Championships, 63rd
Railways beat Tamil Nadu to win the men’s volleyball championship.  In the women’s category Railways beat Kerala to defend their title.

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