PCC Men’s Cagers Looking Forward to South Coast Conference Play

first_imgSports PCC Men’s Cagers Looking Forward to South Coast Conference Play By ROBERT LEWIS Published on Sunday, January 17, 2016 | 3:24 pm EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy More Cool Stuff Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Community News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Lancer Angel Holguin goes to the basket during PCC’s loss to Cerritos Friday at Hutto-Patterson Gymnasium, image by Richard Quinton.Despite losing its fifth straight game Friday night against visiting Cerritos College, 72-53, the Pasadena City College men’s basketball team still has control over its conference future. The Lancers begin the 8-game, South Coast Conference North Division schedule this Wednesday, Jan. 20 when they travel to face Los Angeles Trade Tech. Tip-off is 7 p.m.PCC (4-14 overall) started out strong against Cerritos (12-8), taking an early 14-6 lead during the first 7:18 of the SCC crossover game. The Falcons proceeded to go on a 13-2 run to go ahead. A layup by Corey Robinson made it a 1-point game with Cerritos up 24-23. In the final four minutes of the half, the Falcons put together a 10-2 run for a 34-25 advantage.The Lancers never threatened in the second half. Cerritos built as large as a 23-point lead.PCC transfer forward Darrell Childs did his best to keep his team competitive as he notched game-highs of 17 points and 14 rebounds. He was 7-for-12 from the field. Freshman guard Todd Barnes (Pasadena High) added 12 points on 6-for-11 shooting plus six rebounds. Frosh center Angel Holguin contributed eight points and four boards.The Lancers bench scored just seven points, all by Robinson, a freshman guard.For Cerritos, Brian Nebo scored 16 points and drilled three treys while center Jamal Watson was a force inside with 16 points, eight rebounds and four blocks.In a SCC crossover played Jan. 13, host El Camino (3-13) handed PCC a 63-53 loss. Frosh guard Aaron Yu (from Taiwan) scored a team-high 10 points off the bench. Childs added nine points and eight rebounds and Barnes nine points and seven boards. Blake Evans tallied eight points and five rebounds in a reserve role. Robinson picked up seven points and five assists. ECC’s 3-point shooting was the difference as the Warriors were 9-for-17 on long range attempts while PCC hit 4-for-17. Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday Top of the News center_img Community News faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyCitizen Service CenterPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes First Heatwave Expected Next Week Subscribe Business News HerbeautyHere Is What Scientists Say Will Happen When You Eat AvocadosHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyInstall These Measures To Keep Your Household Safe From Covid19HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyTiger Woods Is ‘Different Man’ 10 Years After ScandalHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty5 Things To Avoid If You Want To Have Whiter TeethHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty8 Easy Exotic Meals Anyone Can MakeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyAmazing Sparks Of On-Screen Chemistry From The 90-sHerbeautyHerbeauty Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Make a comment Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadenalast_img read more

New Doug Wright Play & More On Tap For Atlantic’s 2014-15 Season

first_img Additionally, ATC will stage two musicals as part of the company’s “Atlantic For Kids” series. Ivy & Bean, The Musical, featuring music and lyrics by Scott Elmegreen and based on the books by Annie Barrows, will play weekend mornings from October 10 through November 9. Camp Kappawanna, set to play weekend mornings beginning March 21, 2015 through April 12, will feature music and lyrics by Grammy nominee Lisa Loeb, Michelle Lewis and Dan Petty and a book by Cusi Cram and Peter Hirsch. The American premiere of Moira Buffini’s Dying For It, adapted from Nikolai Erdman’s The Suicide, will begin performances at the Linda Gross Theater on December 17 and run through January 25, 2015, officially opening on January 8. Neil Pepe directs the play that satirizes the hypocrisy and illogic of Soviet life experienced by a man down on his luck. The world premiere of Guards at the Taj comes next at the Linda Gross, written by Rajiv Joseph, who was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist for Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo in 2010. The play, which follows two Imperial Guards in 1648 India, wil begin performances on May 6, 2015 and run through June 14. Doug Wright, who won a Tony and Pulitzer for I Am My Own Wife, will direct the world premiere of his play Posterity. Running from February 25, 2015 through April 5 at the Linda Gross Theater, the play explores the nature of artistic success and the fear of being forgotten as Norway’s most celebrated sculptor prepares to commission a portrait of Henrik Ibsen. The season will conclude with two of David Mamet’s short plays, The Shawl and Prairie Du Chien, which both explore the toll of death and murder. The revival will play Atlantic Stage 2 from May 27, 2015 through June 21, with opening night set for June 9. The Atlantic Theater Company has announced its complete 2014-2015 season, which will include two world premieres from a Pulitzer winner and a Pulitzer finalist: Doug Wright’s Posterity and Rajiv Joseph’s Guards at the Taj. Also joining the lineup is a revival of David Mamet’s two haunting short plays The Shawl and Prairie Du Chien. View Comments At Atlantic Stage 2, the world premiere of I’m Gonna Pray For you So Hard by Halley Feiffer will play from January 7, 2015 through February 8, with opening night scheduled for January 20. The dark comedy, helmed by Trip Cullman, tells the story of an actress and her famous playwright father as they attempt to find common ground as they deliberate over reading reviews of her off-Broadway debut. As previously announced, the ATC season will kick off with Found, a new musical featuring a book by Tony nominee Hunter Bell and Lee Overtree and a score by Eli Bolin. Performances will run from September 18 through November 9 at the Linda Gross Theater, with opening night set for October 14.last_img read more

Arsenal beat Chelsea in Community Shield

first_imgLondon, United Kingdom | AFP |  Goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and star signing Alvaro Morata were the Chelsea fall guys as Arsenal won the Community Shield 4-1 on penalties at Wembley on Sunday.Goals from Chelsea’s Victor Moses and Arsenal new boy Sead Kolasinac sent the game to a shootout and with both Courtois and Morata limply squandering their spot-kicks, Arsenal won the trophy for the third time in four years.Courtois blazed his penalty over the bar before substitute Morata, a £58 million (£75.6 million; 64.2 million euros) capture from Real Madrid, shot wide, allowing Olivier Giroud to seal victory for Arsenal.Arsenal, embarking upon their first season without Champions League football since 1997, have won on their last nine visits to Wembley, a run stretching back to a victory over Wigan Athletic in the semi-finals of the FA Cup in 2014.Arsene Wenger’s side open the Premier League season at home to 2016 champions Leicester City on Friday, with Antonio Conte’s Chelsea beginning their title defence at home to Burnley the following day.Moses, sent off after receiving a second yellow card for diving as Arsenal stunned Chelsea 2-1 in May’s FA Cup final, partially atoned by putting the champions ahead early in the second half.But after Pedro had been shown a straight red card for an ugly challenge on Mohamed Elneny, Kolasinac headed in an 81st-minute equaliser to leave the game 1-1 at full-time.As in the cup final, Arsenal made the more assured start and came within inches of opening the scoring when new signing Alexandre Lacazette curled a shot against the post after a slick counter-attack. – Mertesacker forced off –Per Mertesacker was one of the heroes of Arsenal’s FA Cup win, expertly marshalling a badly depleted defence, but the club captain was to last just 27 minutes of the teams’ reunion.The giant German centre-back had to go off after a collision with Gary Cahill’s elbow left blood streaming down his face, giving Bosnian defender Kolasinac an opportunity to make his official debut.As Arsenal reorganised, Chelsea began to assert themselves, Moses and Pedro working Petr Cech before Willian was harshly booked for diving after his left foot was clipped by Hector Bellerin’s knee inside the box.Neat footwork set Alex Iwobi up to curl a shot at Chelsea goalkeeper Courtois late in the first half, but within a minute of kick-off in the second half, Arsenal found themselves behind.Granit Xhaka’s attempt to clear Willian’s corner sent the ball high into the air and when Cahill headed it back into the danger area, Moses darted in behind Rob Holding to apply an emphatic finish.Elneny squandered a presentable chance for Arsenal by slicing wide and then sent Courtois scrambling with a mishit cross from wide on the right.Wenger threw on Giroud and Theo Walcott for Lacazette and Iwobi and saw Xhaka extend Courtois with a 30-yard effort.Pedro’s dismissal for catching Elneny’s left Achilles with his studs tipped the momentum in Arsenal’s favour and they equalised when Xhaka’s cross from the ensuing free-kick was headed in by Kolasinac.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Odds stacked against DRC Club, Ugandan in charge of security in CAF Cup final

first_imgShare on: WhatsApp Dixon Okello training local safety officials at Namboole recently. He is in charge of Sunday’s CAF Cup final in Kinshasa. PHOTO DIXON BOND OKELLO FACEBOOKJohannesburg, South Africa | AFP & THE INDEPENDENT |  Congolese side V Club admit it will be “very difficult” to overcome a 3-0 deficit against Raja Casablanca of Morocco Sunday when they host the CAF Confederation Cup final second leg.There have been 108 two-leg CAF club finals in four competitions with only Mouloudia Alger of Algeria succeeding after trailing by three goals following the first match.Having lost 3-0 at Hafia of Guinea in the 1976 African Cup of Champions Clubs (now CAF Champions League) final, they won by the same score at home and triumphed on penalties.“It will be very difficult to pull back three goals,” conceded long-serving V Club coach Florent Ibenge ahead of the return match at the 80,000-seat Stade des Martyrs in Kinshasa.“I barely recognised my team in the first leg of the final. There was no positive aggression from the boys despite it being a continental final.“Raja won the battle for possession every time the ball ran loose. My boys were slower, less committed and too negative.“We seemed obsessed with defending, retreating far too close to our goalmouth at the slightest hint of a Moroccan attack.“However, there is always hope in football and we must improve 100 percent to have any chance of success.”V Club did win 2-0 at home to Raja during August in the group phase of the Confederation Cup through goals from Fabrice Ngoma and 10-goal leading scorer Jean-Marc Makusu Mundele.Mundele retired injured midway through the opening half of the first leg, but trained this week and is expected to play, possibly as a substitute.The victory over Raja will offer a glimmer of hope, and so will a 17-match winning streak at home in the competition since 2009 when they beat Malanti Chiefs from Swaziland (now eSwatini).– Resilient –The most recent of those victories was 4-0 over Al Masry of Egypt in a semi-final second leg after a goalless first encounter.However, Raja are likely to prove far more resilient opponents than Masry, whose cause was not helped by constant arguing with the match officials.The Moroccans have won five and drawn one of seven away matches in the Confederation Cup en route to the final, scoring 13 goals and conceding eight.But technical director Fathi Jamal has warned the squad to “remain humble” and guard against overconfidence. “Overall victory is not assured despite building a good first-leg advantage. We have not lifted the trophy yet,” he stressed.Raja are chasing a first CAF title since winning the final edition of the CAF Cup in 2003 when French coach Henri Michel, who died this year, was in charge.They also won the Champions League, the premier African club competition, three times and the CAF Super Cup once, with all five successes achieved under foreign coaches.Spaniard Juan Carlos Garrido is the current coach and will become the first to win the Confederation Cup with two clubs if Raja raise the trophy.Garrido coached Al Ahly to a dramatic victory in the 2014 final with the Egyptians scoring six minutes into stoppage time to pip Sewe San Pedro of the Ivory Coast on away goals.V Club have conquered Africa once, but that was 45 years ago when they defeated Asante Kotoko of Ghana to lift the African Cup of Champions Clubs.They have since lost to Algerian clubs JET (1981) and Entente Setif (2014) in finals of the same competition, and yet another loss is a title decider looming large this weekend.Ugandan in chargeUgandan Dixon Okello, a Confederation of African Football (CAF)and Federation of International Football associations (FIFA) trained security officer, has been put in charge of the CAF final at the 80,000-seat Stade des Martyrs in Kinshasa.This is the third straight assignment for Okello in three months, having been  in charge of matches of the Africa Champions league quarters and semis in Cairo Egypt in October.His job is to plan,coordinate and oversee,the safety and security of all fans, players and officials.last_img read more

Red hot Pirates win 9th in row, top Brewers 2-1 in 14th inning

first_imgRussell Martin (55) gets a face full of cream from a towel in celebration from A.J. Burnett after Martin drove in Gaby Sanchez with the game-winning hit in the 14th inning of the baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday, June 30, 2013, in Pittsburgh.  (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)by Chris AdamskiPITTSBURGH (AP) — As Gaby Sanchez “trucked” around third some 6 1/2 hours after the game began, one thought went through his head.“‘This is enough,’” the 216-pound first baseman said after the game. “‘I’m tired. It’s been a long day.’”Then Sanchez laughed. The Pittsburgh Pirates have been doing an awful lot of that lately.Pinch-hitter Russell Martin singled home Sanchez for the winning run in the 14th inning and the Pirates earned their ninth straight victory, defeating the Milwaukee Brewers 2-1 Sunday.The Pirates extended their longest winning streak since 2004, when they took 10 in a row. Pittsburgh reached the midpoint of its season with the best record in the majors at 51-30.“It’s fun right now,” said Martin, who played a key role in an extra-inning victory he did not start for the second straight Sunday. “Obviously, winning is fun, but just being on a team with a bunch of guys who play with their hearts out there and enjoy the game, it’s definitely been a pleasure.”Teammates were having fun with Sanchez, a slugger not known for his speed. Sanchez led off the 14th with an infield single. With one out, he stole second for his first steal in more than a year. After a walk, Martin hit a soft liner to center off Francisco Rodriguez (1-1).Sanchez chugged around third and slid home ahead of the throw by Carlos Gomez.“I guess he felt fresh today for some reason,” Martin said with a wry smile. “We’re just grinding; he’s out there grinding and made it happen and I think everybody is enjoying it.”Pirates manager Clint Hurdle gave the sign for Sanchez to make an attempt for his first stolen base as a Pirate and first overall since May 6, 2012. Sanchez has 10 steals and 30 infield hits in 513 career games according to STATS.“Once it gets late like that, you’ve got to take some chances,” Hurdle said. “Gaby’s always heads-up.”Sanchez validated the efforts of Pittsburgh’s stingy bullpen, one that refers to itself as “The Shark Tank.” Vin Mazzaro pitched five perfect innings. He was among six Pirates relievers who combined for 11 scoreless innings after Charlie Morton was pulled following a rain delay of 2 hours, 20 minutes.Justin Wilson, Bryan Morris, Jason Grilli and Mark Melancon each pitched a scoreless inning following Mazzaro — allowing a total of two hits and no walks.Tony Watson (2-1) struck out four in three hitless innings.“A truly incredible job from everybody out there,” Hurdle said.“It feels like they all throw 110 mph, and they’ve all got good stuff,” Brewers outfielder Logan Schafer said. “They know what they’re doing. They locate their pitches for the most part and they get ahead early in the count. Those guys are very good.”Andrew McCutchen hit a tying single in the Pittsburgh eighth.Bidding for the franchise’s first winning season or playoff berth in 21 years, surprising Pittsburgh enters July with the most wins in the majors. The crowd of 35,351 was about three 3,000 shy of capacity, snapping the PNC Park-record sellout streak of five games.The vast majority of those on hand waited out a downpour not long after Milwaukee scored an unearned run in the second inning off of Morton, making his fourth start since returning from 2012 elbow surgery.The Pirates trailed for roughly the next four hours — after the delay Tyler Thornburg and Mazzaro traded shutout innings — until tying it in the eighth against Jim Henderson. Starling Marte walked with one out, advanced on a groundout and came home on McCutchen’s single.Martin Maldonado had three hits for Milwaukee, which got its only run when Yuniesky Betancourt came home on Schafer’s bunt in the second.“It’s tough right now,” Schafer said. “We’re not getting a whole lot of breaks. But things will turn. They always do in this game.”NOTES: LF Schafer robbed Sanchez of a home run by reaching over the left-center field wall for a catch in the seventh. … After a team off-day Monday, Pittsburgh opens a three-game series against visiting Philadelphia. LHP Jeff Locke, who has a personal seven-winning streak, was in line to start that game but Hurdle said he was been scratched because Locke was forced to throw in the bullpen during the 14th inning Sunday. Locke would have entered the game had it been extended any longer. Hurdle said no determination had been made on who would start Tuesday. … After the Brewers begin a four-game series in Washington on Monday, the lone NL team they will have yet to face will be the New York Mets.last_img read more

Pitt rallies, upsets No. 24 Notre Dame 28-21

first_imgPittsburgh wide receiver Tyler Boyd (23) runs the ball past Notre Dame linebacker Jaylon Smith (9) in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)by Will GravesAP Sports WriterPITTSBURGH (AP) – James Conner ran for two short touchdowns, including the go-ahead score with 9:36 remaining as Pittsburgh upset No. 24 Notre Dame 28-21 Saturday night.Tom Savage passed for 243 yards and two scores to Devin Street as the Panthers (5-4) took advantage of some sloppy play by the Fighting Irish (7-3) to end Notre Dame’s four-game winning streak. Pittsburgh wide receiver Devin Street (15) is greeted by teammate Tyler Boyd (23) after scoring a touchdown in the third quarter of an NCAA college football game on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, in Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh won 28-21.(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)The Irish turned it over three times, including a pair of fourth-quarter interceptions by Tommy Rees. Rees completed 18 of 39 for 318 yards and two touchdowns but was picked off by Pitt’s Ray Vinopal on consecutive passes in the final quarter.TJ Jones caught six passes for 149 yards and a touchdown and ran for another but Notre Dame’s hopes for a Bowl Championship Series bowl bid vanished in a sloppy final 15 minutes.The previous five meetings between the two schools had been decided by six points or less, including a triple-overtime escape by the Irish last year in South Bend that kept their perfect regular season alive.The Panthers blew a 14-point fourth quarter lead and a short field goal in overtime that would have pulled off the upset.This time, Pitt kept its composure and provided coach Paul Chryst with his first signature win since taking over nearly two years ago.last_img read more


first_imgDonegal County Council has warned those who have not paid the household charge that the levy will increase to €144 in May.The council has also revealed that more than 60% of people in the county have now paid the charge which stands at €130.A statement form the council revealed that the charge will only continue to rise for those who have not yet paid. It will  increase further to €145 in June and from July, any outstanding Household Charge will be increased to €200 and added to the Local Property Tax due on the property.The Revenue Commissioners will then pursue any Household Charge outstanding when the Local Property Tax system is fully operational. Interest and penalties under the Local Property Tax system will apply to the additional €200.“The Council would like to acknowledge all those who have already paid the Household Charge to date at the Council’s local offices or on-line and are urging all those remaining liable to pay to do so, as soon as possible, to avoid unnecessary further and increasing penalties and charges,” said a spokesman.Payment of the charge can be made by credit/debit card online at www.householdcharge.ie or by Cheque/bank draft/postal order or cash at any of the Public Service Centres. Donegal County Council confirmed that over 61% of householders in Donegal have now registered properties so far for the Household Charge.  MORE THAN 60% IN DONEGAL HAVE NOW PAID HOUSEHOLD CHARGE BUT INCREASE DUE was last modified: April 4th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:donegalHOUSEHOLD CHARGElast_img read more

Takeaways: Why it’s OK to feel like the Sharks are turning a corner

first_imgSAN JOSE — The Sharks will be heading into Tuesday’s game against the Edmonton Oilers feeling as good about themselves and their game as they have all season.Still, even after the Sharks put forth what was their most complete and compelling victory Saturday, there is a certain reality they can’t escape.“Big win, but we’re still where we’re at. We’re still 7-10-1 now,” Logan Couture said after the Sharks’ 2-1 shootout victory over the Nashville Predators. “Still got to claw our way back to …last_img

Demand Media Downplays Changes to Google’s Search Algorithm

first_imgDemand Media disputes those figures, or rather, says they are “are so significantly overstated that we decided to comment.” According to Demand Media, “Organic growth in visits from non-search sources to eHow continue to grow rapidly and Cracked.com is now the most visited humor site on the Internet with the majority of its page views coming from direct visits. Improvements have been registered from eHow’s recent redesign and the introduction of new video series leading to significant growth in Facebook likes. Our brand advertisers have also reported encouraging results with their intent-targeted campaigns.”These anecdotes may aim to soothe the fears of investors, but it’s not clear that they’ll do so. Demand Media is clearly beholden to Google’s algorithm here, something that it did mention in its SEC filing prior to its IPO. Under “risk factors,” Demand Media admitted that, “the possibility that our relationship with Google from which a significant portion of our revenue is generated may be terminated or renewed on less favorable terms.” These same documents also pointed to the importance of ehow.com as part of the company’s overall welfare. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts When Google announced a tweak to its search algorithm in February, the company presented the change as a move to help improve search results. The official announcement said it wanted to make sure search unearthed “high quality sites,” and while it never specified what the “low quality sites” might be, many interpreted Google’s move as an attack on content farms. Considering that the company arguably most synonymous with content farms, Demand Media, had just filed an IPO the month prior, industry onlookers were eager to see the impact of the new algorithm.The company issued a statement yesterday, downplaying the effect of the change on its pageviews and search ranking. But the stock market this morning seemed less than convinced as the company’s shares took a hit.When Google made its first round of changes back in February, Demand Media seemed to escape relatively unscathed. Most notably, ehow.com wasn’t on the list of the biggest losers. But Google has continued to fine-tune this algorithm, and according to the Web analytics company Sistrix, ehow.com wasn’t so lucky in the latest series of changes. Sistrix contends the site has seen a 66% decline in traffic. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#Google#NYT#search#web A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… audrey watters 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

Table Tennis: Ankita Das wants to step it up in London lympics

first_imgThe odds she battled only toughened her and catapulted her to greater heights. Ankita Das is 18 but left the national stalwarts like Poulomi Ghatak and Mouma Das behind in making the cut for the London Olympics.In 2010, the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) had identified two young players from India for a scholarship programme to prepare them for the 2016 Olympics. They were Ankita and Sauymajit Ghosh, the other paddler from India to have qualified for the Olympics. While Saumyajit honed his skills at the famous Peter Karlsson academy in Sweden, Ankita could not go for the long overseas training due to family constraints.That, though, did not crush the spirits of the teenager and she put all her energy at the academy in her hometown Siliguri, run by former national champion Mantu Ghosh. “I was feeling very down for not being able to train in Sweden. My coach ( Mantu) supported me and said you can learn everything even at home if you are willing to work hard. I took it in my stride and doubled my effort,” said Ankita.Ankita’s graph has risen steadily since her cadet days. She has been the national champion cutting across all age groups and won gold at the World Cadet Championship in 2007. But the big break came when she made it to the quarterfinals of the Junior World Championship last year as an unseeded player, upsetting some big names. She lost a close battle to world No. 10 China’s Ruochen Gu.”That tournament instilled a lot of confidence in me and I thought that I can also make it big,” said Ankita.advertisementThough Ankita has never competed at the international events like the Asian Games or the Commonwealth Games, she is not overawed by the grand stage. “It cannot get bigger than the Olympics. It feels great to have got my first big break in the Olympics. Of course there will be pressure on us, but as my coach says you can be a good player only if you are able to play with an amount of pressure. I know medal will be tough, but I want to leave a mark so that I can look back at my performance with pride.”Ankita became the part of the Indian team for the South Asian qualifiers after beating veteran Mouma Das in the Olympic trials. K Shamini and Poulomi Ghatak were the top two paddlers from the country at the Hong Kong event, but Ankita walked away with the honours.After finishing third in her pool, she was pitted against an experienced Shamini, a clash that was to eventually decide the Olympic berth. “I was tensed. I had beaten Shamini before, but she had a better record against me. I called Mantu di (coach) and she calmed me down and asked me to play my natural game. When I beat Shamini, I was in a state of shock for a few minutes. I stood near the table in disbelief before the coach shook me from the trance,” said Ankita.What waited for her on reaching Siliguri was unthinkable. “It was crazy. A huge crowd had gathered. Saumyajit and I were taken in a procession.”last_img read more