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Sachin, Warne aim to bring cricket to mainstream America

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LOS ANGELES — They are two of the most famous athletes in the world, and both are legends of their sport. In his home country, Sachin Tendulkar is referred to as a god. Shane Warne, an Australian, is widely regarded as one of the best bowlers in the history of the game.

The hope of the two is to cure the anonymity of the sport in the states—now retired from the game, Warne called Tendulkar almost a year ago with the idea to bring cricket to America. It was then that the Cricket All-Star series was born, with the marriage of bringing the game’s best players to an untapped market, with matches to be played in some of America’s most iconic baseball stadiums. Matches were played in New York, Houston, and Los Angeles.

“We really want to globalize this,” Warne said. “We’re bringing together 28 of the biggest stars that have ever played the game to America to hopefully have that sort of impact.”

They both know it won’t be easy, but the two hope their passion for both the game, and the United States, can pay dividend for the potential growth of the sport. Strange words to read when you consider the fact that over one billion people worldwide tuned into watch a matchup of India and Pakistan during this past year’s Cricket World Cup – almost 10 times the number of viewers drawn by last season’s Super Bowl.

The sport is played by over 120 million people worldwide.

“We are both very passionate about the game,” Warne said. “And we both love America.” Tendulkar added, “it’s a sport-loving nation, but this will be a challenge.”

In theory, cricket is quite similar to a sport American’s are already crazy for: baseball—however, there are also distinct differences between the two sports. Pitches known as googlies and yorkers bounce before reaching the batsman. The bat is broad and can hit in a range of directions around an oval-shaped field.

But one thing American’s appreciate most about baseball, is the longball, commonly referred to as the homerun, and stellar defensive plays. Warne described cricket as an amplified edition of those very traits.

“It’s the rock-and-roll version,” he said. “Huge hits and lots of fielding.”

The exhibition was simply that, but was held with the purpose of planting a seed. Ticket sales weren’t what they had expected, and the play less than all-star caliber, but for now, Tendulkar and Warne hope it left a lasting enough impression for a rather ambitious goal: fielding an American cricket team in the 2020 World Cup, something Warne said he believes is completely doable.

 

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India, Pakistan spar over women’s rights in Kashmir

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India

NEW YORK (Diya TV)  — At the United Nations, both India and Pakistan’s representatives took shots at their counterpart over women’s rights. Islamabad’s outgoing envoy to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi, said the women in Jammu and Kashmir were suffering due to the communication blackout in the state. India’s First Secretary to the UN Paulomi Tripathi said, without naming Pakistan, these “baseless statements” were ironic given the amount of honor killings that take place there annually.

Rajeev Majumdar is the new president of the Washington State Bar Association, becoming the first state bar president of South Asian descent in the United States.

For the first time, India entered the ranks of the top ten countries sending visitors to the United States, with tourists from India spending nearly $16 billion in the U.S. in 2018 alone.

And while the Kings and Pacers played two entertaining games in Mumbai, their legacy will include supporting five under-resourced schools in and around the region, outfitting them with Smart Classrooms, STEM training and new basketball courts.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Gandhi 150th birth anniversary noted around the world

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Birth Anniversary

NEW DELHI (Diya TV) —  Celebrations for Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary have been ongoing for the past year, but culminated with a ceremony in New Delhi featuring Prime Minister Modi and another in Washington at the Library of Congress. And France’s government worked with the Indian Embassy there to issue a stamp in honor of his birth anniversary.

US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal are meeting this week to continue the US-India discussion on trade and investment.

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb came to New Delhi to strengthen ties between the Hoosier State and India. Infosys has already made a large commitment there. Holcomb is part of a large delegation of Americans now heading Mumbai to take in the first-ever NBA preseason games in India featuring the Indiana Pacers and the Sacramento Kings.

Bollywood turned Hollywood actor Anupam Kher came to the Bay Area to keynote the Akshay Patra annual fundraising gala that helps feed children in India a hot meal during the school year.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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Houston cop Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal remembered, fund set up for family

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Dhaliwal

HOUSTON (Diya TV) —  The loss of Harris County Deputy Sheriff Sandeep Singh Dhaliwal while on a routine traffic stop has stunned people around the country. Everyone from Texas governor Greg Abbott to the Houston Texans football team are honoring the Dhaliwal. A GoFundMe page has been setup to support his family, with totals so far in excess of $700,000.

Before Prime Minister Modi headed back to India following his Houston community summit & UN speeches, he met with Rep. Tulsi Gabbard. The Hawaii Congresswoman & Democratic Presidential candidate has been criticized for her support of Modi. But she was happy to highlight the importance of the US-India relationship on Twitter.

The NBA is in India this week for their first-ever preseason games that will feature the Indiana Pacers & Sacramento Kings. The Gateway of India was illuminated with bright colors & there are a series of events in and around the games going on in Delhi & Mumbai.

Ravi Kapur contributed to this report.

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