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‘Fantastic’ Max Verstappen Wins Third Straight Formula One Title

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Max Verstappen clinched his third consecutive world title on Saturday when he finished second behind rookie Oscar Piastri in an incident-filled sprint race at the Qatar Grand Prix, describing his success as “fantastic”. It was a fine maiden Formula One victory for Australian 22-year-old Piastri, but his feat was overshadowed by Verstappen’s achievement, the Dutchman having required only three points to take the title. His only rival and Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez was involved in a collision and retired, making him the first “Saturday champion” since Nelson Piquet, father of his girlfriend Kelly, in South Africa in 1983.

“I don’t know what to say. Incredible year. Thank you for providing me with such a car. It has been a pleasure so far this year,” 26-year-old Verstappen told his team over the car radio.

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner described the Dutchman as “phenomenal” and “out of this world”.

Piastri’s win was McLaren’s first since Daniel Ricciardo triumphed for them at the 2021 Italian Grand Prix and it was only the second time this season that Red Bull had been defeated.

Verstappen won the title with six races remaining in the season, the greatest margin since 2002 when Michael Schumacher was champion for Ferrari.

His title win enabled him to join a rare club for three-time champions alongside Jack Brabham, Niki Lauda, Nelson Piquet, Ayrton Senna and Jackie Stewart – and an even more elite group of those to have won three in a row, Juan Manuel Fangio, Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton.

“This has been a fantastic feeling and it has been a fantastic year. We have had some great races and I am super proud of the team job and it is so enjoyable to be a part of this group of people. To win three times is incredible,” added Verstappen.

He said that he had no records in sight as targets, but wanted to continue racing and winning.

“We’ll keep on pushing and doing the best we can.”

Verstappen, who will start Sunday’s Qatar Grand Prix from pole position, has an unassailable 184-point lead with six races left in the season.

Piastri said: “I am very happy but that was a stressful race. We did a great job.”

His McLaren team-mate Lando Norris came home third ahead of Mercedes’ George Russell and Hamilton with the Ferraris of Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc sixth and seventh.

Alex Albon of Williams was eighth, two-time champion Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin ninth and Pierre Gasly of Alpine 10th.

Perez in the gravel

After a sweltering day, the sprint race started in warm conditions under floodlights at the Lusail International Circuit, Piastri making an excellent start to pull clear as team-mate Norris was engaged by a cluster of skirmishes behind him.

Norris dropped from second to sixth while Russell went through to second ahead of the two Ferraris with Verstappen fifth before Liam Lawson ran off-track in a cloud of dust, prompting a safety car intervention.

On re-start, a fiery Alonso pressurised Norris in a wheel-to-wheel battle while Piastri ran wide and allowed Russell through to lead. Logan Sargeant then spun off in his Williams to bring another safety car interval.

Piastri had chosen medium compound tyres while Russell, Sainz and Leclerc were all on softs, giving them an early advantage in grip.

Verstappen, in fifth as the safety car led into lap six of the 19-lap race, was comfortable in the knowledge that he was on course to clinch his third title by finishing in the top six.

As lap seven began and the safety car went in, Russell stormed into a 1.4 seconds lead ahead of Piastri, who was fending off attacks from Sainz, hoping that his medium tyres would prove more durable in the closing stages.

Perez and Verstappen then began to show Red Bull’s speed, the Mexican moving up to 10th by passing Pierre Gasly and the Dutchman sweeping past both Ferraris in succession on the straight to take third.

On lap 10, Piastri regained the lead, blasting past Russell on the straight while Norris overtook Leclerc for fifth as Perez was entangled in a collision with Esteban Ocon and Nico Hulkenberg, the Mexican spinning across the gravel and out of the race.

Perez was unable to score points and effectively ended his last mathematical hopes for the title, as another safety car intervention began, Verstappen being assured of his third crown.

As the racing re-started, on lap 16, it was clear the Dutchman had no intention of taking a third title without a win as he passed Russell down the inside of Turn One to take second and begin his pursuit of Piastri.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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“Playing A Part In Final, It’s Special…”: Andre Russell On KKR Winning IPL 2024

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With the Kolkata Knight Riders lifting the IPL trophy, team all-rounder Andre Russell said he feels excited over his contributions to the team’s journey in the IPL and it’s a special feeling. KKR defeated Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League 2024 final at Chennai’s MA Chidambaram Stadium on Sunday. An all-round performance from Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), including fiery spells by Mitchell Starc and Andre Russell and a half-century by Venkatesh Iyer, helped the Purple and Gold side secure their third Indian Premier League (IPL). Sunrisers, who set the T20 cricketing world on fire with their fierce hitting, sky-high run-rates, largely due to the opening pair of Travis Head and Abhishek Sharma, got a taste of their own medicine. In a battle of two big buys, the Australian stars Cummins (Rs 20.5 crore for SRH) and Starc (Rs 24.75 crores for KKR), it was the latter who prevailed.

“When you’re a part of this squad, not playing or not involved in the field, but supporting the guys all the way, it’s always a good feeling, but this is a special feeling. In the XI, playing a part in the final, contributing as well through my leadership and everything, it’s an exciting feeling. It’s special,” Russell said on Jio Cinema.

The 36-year-old cricketer further spoke about his batting technique.

“It’s just me not clearing my front leg too much, standing as still as possible, and waiting as long as possible. Normally, this is my trigger movement, clearing my left leg, so I tried to keep it as still as possible. So, if the bowler bowls wide, I push straight and I have access because I am standing on the off-stump,” the West Indies all-rounder added.

Earlier, SRH won the toss and elected to bat. KKR rocked SRH with continuous wickets, with the big buy Mitchell Starc justifying his Rs 24.75 crores price tag. Only skipper Pat Cummins (24 in 19 balls, with two fours and a six) and Aiden Markram (20 in 23 balls, with three fours) touched the 20-run mark and SRH was bundled out for 113 in 18.3 overs.

Andre Russell (3/19) was the top bowler for KKR. Starc (2/14) and Harshit Rana (2/24) also contributed well with the ball. Sunil Narine, Varun Chakravarthy and Vaibhav Arora took a wicket each.

KKR pulled off the run-chase of 114 runs in just 10.3 overs with eight wickets in hand, with Venkatesh Iyer (52* in 26 balls, with four boundaries and three sixes) and Rahmanullah Gurbaz (39 in 32 balls, with five fours and two sixes) shining for KKR.

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“Virat Kohli Needs To Ease His Standards…”: Ambati Rayudu’s Bizarre Take Gets Strong Reaction

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File photo of Virat Kohli© AFP




Former Indian cricket team Ambati Rayudu once again courted controversy after his comments on Virat Kohli and Royal Challengers Bengaluru following the IPL 2024 final. After Kolkata Knight Riders’ victory over Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL 2024 final, Rayudu said that Virat’s consistency may become a burden for the side despite the star India batter emerging as the highest run-scorer in the competition. During an analysis on Star Sports, Rayudu praised Kohli for setting high standards before pointing out that players like Rajat Patidar may find it difficult to replicate such performances.

Here’s the conversation between Ambati Rayudu, Kevin Pietersen and Mayanti Langer –

Rayudu: When you have a stalwart and a legend like Virat Kohli, who has set really high standards, it’s very hard for the youngsters to be in a side like that and try and match his standard because he always wants the team to be performing at his level.

Pietersen: No, it should be good for youngsters…

Rayudu: But sometimes the burden of really trying to be Virat Kohli in a sport where you know nobody is going to be like him.

Mayanti Langer: But didn’t Patidar step up to the plate?

“Patidar can only be a Patidar but not a Virat Kohli, and I think RCB, as a management, understands that you cannot have 11 Virat Kohli in the team. You need to have 1 Virat Kohli with 10 others being themselves, having their own identities and strengths and weaknesses. And you need to use them well in terms of resources,” Rayudu said.

“You can’t expect somebody to win the game in the first season. You need to give him that leeway and time to grow into a match-winner. So I think the management has its task out, and even Virat Kohli needs to ease his standards a bit when it comes to youngsters, nurturing them, and letting them go.”

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Yuvraj Singh Sends Notices To Real Estate Firms For ‘Inferior Quality Apartment’ In Hauz Khas, New Delhi

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Former India cricketer Yuvraj Singh has sent two separate legal notices to two Delhi-based real estate firms invoking arbitration clauses over alleged violation of his privacy rights in promotion of construction projects and for delayed delivery of possession of a dwelling unit to him in the national capital. One of the legal notices, sent by Delhi-based law firm Rizwan Law Associates on behalf of the cricketer, has sought “adequate damages in terms of delay caused in completion of the Project and issuance of the Letter of Possession in the absence of any reasonable cause or extension in timeline.” 

It has also sought “delivery of proper quality, standard, class and grade of the Apartment to My Client who was promised a premium quality Apartment and has been offered an extremely inferior quality Apartment.” 

According to the notice, the cricketer had booked a dwelling unit in 2020 at Hauz Khas, New Delhi in one of the projects of a real estate firm.

M/s Brilliant Etoile Private Limited and M/s Uppal Housing Private Limited are the noticees in one of the legal notices pertaining to the delayed possession of the dwelling units.

The second notice of the cricketer was issued to Brilliant Etoile Private Limited only and it pertained to infringement of his privacy rights.

“That this dispute principally concerns with the violation of Intellectual Property Rights with respect to the Personality Rights and misuse of Brand Value of the Celebrity i.e., My Client in contravention to the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding dated 24.11.2020, however, My Client reserves the right to add the detailed instances and elaborate in further specificity in the Statement of Claim,” the second notice said.

According to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), the cricketer was to promote and endorse the project and the MoU expired on November 23, 2023. He is aggrieved by the alleged continued commercial use of the services provided by him, including the use of his photographs on billboards, project site, social media posts, and articles despite the expiry of the MoU, the notice said.

The former India all-rounder said the alleged continued use of his image and others was in complete violation of his Copyright, Personality Rights, and Right to Publicity enshrined under the laws and protected as his Intellectual Property Rights. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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