I proved to myself that I can win both world titles: Pankaj Advani to India Today

first_imgHe is India’s best prospect to bag that elusive individual Gold medal at the Olympic Games but unfortunately World Billiards and Snooker Champion Pankaj Advani has not got that opportunity to make the nation proud at the grandest stage of them all.ALSO WATCH: SPORTS TODAYDespite making a few appearances at the Asian Games level, cue sports has failed to get a berth at the Olympics but efforts are on by the Game’s governing body to get an entry into the 2024 Games.The 32-year-old Bengaluru lad has won 18 World titles in Billiards and Snooker to go along with his Gold in 2006 and 2010 Asian Games, and while he would welcome the opportunity to win Gold at the Olympics, Pankaj says there is more to sports than just the Olympics.Question: Pankaj you have won everything in the world of cue sports, I am sure you would welcome the opportunity to win a Gold for India at the Olympics.Pankaj Advani: Obviously it will be great to have cue sports at quadrennial events  but at the same time I have always maintained that Olympics is not the be-all of sports. I think it is about consistency and if a player is consistently achieving year after year then that for me is a bigger achievement. I am not trying to take anything away from our Olympic medalists or any other quadrennial event winners because I feel Asian Games & Olympics are also very very important as it is a huge stage and comes once in 4 years. But there should be no discrimination between quadrennial and annual events. In fact when I met the sports minister I actually explained this to him that it is not our fault that a particular sports is not there at the Olympics. It is like if you are working in a movie and as an actor you deliver a hit once every 4 years as compared to an actor who delivers a hit year after year then who would you back? It is obviously the person who is more consistent. So I feel while it will be great to have cue sports at the Olympics but I do not think it is the be-all of sports really and I think there are a lot of other things to look forward to.advertisementIBSF World Billiards and Snooker Champion�?�?�?�?�???�??? what a month this has been! #17 and #18 pic.twitter.com/x06Bxq3gM8- Pankaj Advani (@PankajAdvani247) November 28, 2017Question: You have been very consistent and have even been bestowed the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, the country’s highest sporting honour. Given a chance, which format do you think will do well at the Olympic Games?Pankaj Advani: I can only talk about which format will do well at the Olympics but as far as what needs to be done then you would have to ask the authorities, the federations, the international bodies because they seem to have the answers and they seem to be going about it the right way if that is the right way because so far it has not been successful. All I can say is that the 6-red format in snooker seems to be the best way. It is quick, it is fast paced and it attracts a lot of players and is unpredictable so anybody can win. If they go with the traditional 15-reds format then it will have to be very short, it will have to be a best of 5 if it has to make it to the quadrennial events. We were part of the Asian Games till 2010 but for some reason Korea (in 2014) did not want cue sports to be a part of their games so it was removed but I am hopeful that in the Asian Games it will be included in 2022 in China.Question: You have excelled in both Billiards and Snooker and I am sure you will welcome the inclusion of either of them into the Olympics. But which format do you enjoy more?Pankaj Advani: It is always difficult to answer that because I have always played both sports. I have always maintained that I do not like to just concentrate on one as I feel that it becomes too monotonous for me as they say variety is the spice of life. So it is the same case for me where I like the variety and I like to juggle between different formats. Both Billiards and Snooker are different in terms of scoring pattern, in terms of technique, mindset and approach. So there are a lot of different areas in which a cueist is tested in and that for me is the ultimate challenge, to be able to excel in both. I am so glad that November happened that I could prove it to myself before proving it to anyone else from the outside world or to the haters, I proved to myself that I can win both world titles at the same time which obviously has never been done before.advertisementQuestion: India recently hosted the U-17 FIFA World Cup, we hosted the 2010 Commonwealth Games, hockey world cup, the cricket world cup among other global events. Do you think that will inspire youngsters to take up sports by seeing the world’s best in action? Or do you think the country should first invest at the grass-root level before investing in such events?Pankaj Advani: I think it is important to host international events in every sport because it inspires a lot of youngsters and they can actually get to witness the standard at which a particular game is played, but at the same time I feel that the funds first need to be utilised to develop grass-root levels and to actually develop our own players and make them reach a certain level where then they can compete internationally. So it should not happen the other way round. I feel that we need to start from scratch and build up our talent but maybe doing talent scouting or having coaching development programs and I am sure our sports minister has thought of these things and then reach a level where our athletes are able to compete with international players and teams and then host events so that it becomes a sort of a test for us and we can actually see where we stand. At the same time I do feel good that events of such magnitude are happening in India.last_img read more

Last session of 10th parliament prorogued

first_imgThe last session of the 10th Parliament was prorogued on Monday after only eight sittings.The 23rd session passed 19 bills, including the Narcotics Control Bill, 2018 and Sarkari Chakori Ain 2018.Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury read out the prorogation order of the president around 10:05pm.Before reading out the prorogation order, Shirin thanked all the MPs, including the opposition ones, for providing all-out cooperation in running the session and reaching a consensus in a unique way to uphold the parliamentary democratic practice in the house.She said parliament got lively with the active participation of the MPs of both the treasury and opposition benches.The speaker praised the opposition MPs for their constructive role in the session by joining different businesses of the house.Parliament during its current tenure sat 23 times that witnessed 410 business days. Some 198 bills were placed and 193 of them were passed.The opposition did not boycott parliament, but they staged walkout for three times, while the opposition leader was present in the house for 242 days.Leader of the house and prime minister Sheikh Hasina was present in the 10th parliament for 338 days.last_img read more

Matter of choice

first_imgAt times we all feel that life is very complicated but only a few of us are able to express the dilemmas in right manner. Artist Aarti Zaveri expresses the same through her art work at upcoming United Art Fair. The artist believes that, it is very easy to complicate a beautiful life and at the same time very difficult to simplify the essence of life. These thoughts are reflected in her paintings by the use of bold and vibrant colours.  She has created a body of work around these figurative expressions. One can sense the attempt to convey her deep thoughts through the use of symbols and signs in a subtle and minimal manner in each painting. The canvas reflects the basic complexity of a human to find answers in the outside world when all the answers needed are already present within us.The last edition of her installations in United Art Fair, were based on the theme, how a person wears a mask to conceal various truths of life. Which was based on artistes belief that life is a paradox and a puzzle, the ones who solve it, makes it simple and the rest remains to be just a part of the puzzle.With her recent work she is giving out a beautifull message that everyone has an option to make their lives easy or difficult, it depends on us what we choose.last_img read more

Jazz up your winter wardrobe

first_imgWinter leaves fashionistas with restricted options of experimenting with colours, designs and cuts but one can try out some smart ways like layering and opting for classic pieces to make winter wear stylish.As the Seventies make a comeback at the International Fashion front this season (Chloe, Marc Jacobs, Alexander Wang), the leather dress with its sculptural shape and a rock-chic look, has become a must have in our Fall/Winter 2016-2017 wardrobe. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf Layering of garments is the most creative and yet the safest way to look classy and stylish during winters. All you need is a strong sense of personal style and a tad bit of creative genes within you, and you can have a lot of fun mixing and matching pieces from your wardrobe, even those which have been rendered so very last season! While planning the winter wardrobe one cannot ignore the trends of the season and what’s trending this season are the patches, badges and embroideries. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive For those who are not so experimental and more adhering to the classic looks, we recommend few classic pieces to them, to form looks which are tried and tested as well as instantly chic. Styles such as a knee length wool coat – one of the most classic winter fashions, a knit cardigan – ideal for layering under heavy wool coats in the winter. When it comes to winter fashion, neck accessories play a very essential role. They can add that extra zing to the ordinary winter ensembles for the day. With sportswear trending in the business of fashion, bomber jackets are no more associated with so much of masculinity and mundane look. In fact it has transcended in daring and feminine range of colours and designs for those who care to explore beyond the classic black look. When all is settled, we can come down to basics – the bottom wear. Choose from the stylish lycrated leggings with zipper details, enzyme washed and beautifully crafted denims and formal trousers. When worn over leg warmers you can still enjoy our embellished and embroidered denim shorts and keep those biker boots handy to complete the look.last_img read more

IPython 70 releases with AsyncIO Integration and new Async libraries

first_imgIPython team released version 7.0 of IPython, yesterday. IPython is a powerful Python interactive shell with features such as advanced tab completion, syntactic coloration, and more. IPython 7.0 explores new features such as AsyncIO integration, new Async libraries, and Async support in Notebooks. IPython (Interactive Python) provides a rich toolkit for interactive computing in multiple programming languages. It’s the Jupyter kernel for Python used by millions of users. Let’s discuss the key features in IPython 7.0 release. AsyncIO Integration IPython 7.0 comes with the integration of IPython and AsyncIO. This means that you don’t have to import or learn about asyncIO anymore. AsyncIO is a library which lets you write concurrent code using the async/await syntax. The asyncIO library is used as a foundation for multiple Python asynchronous frameworks providing high-performance network, web-servers, database connection libraries, distributed task queues, etc. Just remember that asyncIO is an async function, it won’t magically make your code faster but will make it easier to write. New Async Libraries (Curio and Trio integration) Python consists of keywords async and await. This helps simplify the use of asynchronous programming and the standardization around asyncIO. It also allows experimentation with the new paradigms for asynchronous libraries. Now, two new Async Libraries namely Curio and Trio, have been added in IPython 7.0. Both of these libraries explore ways to write asynchronous programs. They also explore how to use async, awaits, and coroutines when starting from a blank slate. Curio is a library which helps perform concurrent I/O and common system programming tasks. It makes use of the Python coroutines and the explicit async/await syntax. Trio is an async/await-native I/O library for Python. It lets you write programs that do multiple things at the same time with parallelized I/O. Async support in Notebooks Async code will now work in a notebook when using ipykernel for Jupyter users. With IPython 7.0, async will work with all the frontends that support the Jupyter Protocol, including the classic Notebook, JupyterLab, Hydrogen, nteract desktop, and nteract web. The default code will run in the existing asyncIO/tornado loop that runs the kernel. For more information, check out the official release notes. Read Next Make Your Presentation with IPython How to connect your Vim editor to IPython Increase your productivity with IPythonlast_img read more