Nasir breezes into Australian Open semis

ISLAMABAD - Fifth seed Nasir Iqbal thrashed Malaysian Nafiizwan Adnan 3-1 in the quarterfinal to breeze into the $27,000 Australian Open semifinals where he will face New Zealand’s Paul Coll. Nafiizwan was firm favorite to win the quarterfinal against Nasir and started the first game well winning it 11-8. After losing the first game, Nasir found his missing touch and kept his opponent on the run, wrapping up the second game 11-8. Nafiizwan tried to put some fight in the third game but eventually lost the game 9-11. Nafiizwan was feeling the heat and was completely outclassed in the fourth game by young Pakistani, who took the game 11-6, thus won the match without any major resistance. Nasir looks favorite to register comfortable victory in the semifinals.–Staff Reporter

Amir wins Jashan-e-Azadi Table Tennis

ISLAMABAD - Amir Afzal Khan won the men's singles title of PTV Jashan-e-Azadi Table Tennis Championship 2015. Amir eliminated second seed Hamid Nadeem Pasha in a well-contested three-game match played here at PTV headquarters office on Friday. Firm favorite Hamid started the first game on a high note and won it 10-8. Amir then bounced back and took the second game 10-5. High-flying Amir took the final game 10-6 to record his title victory. Khurshid Anwar officiated the final as referee. Uzair Shah pairing with Suleman Mirza annexed the men's doubles title by eliminating Hamid and Imtiaz Ahmad in straight games 10-8, 10-6. Director Finance Waseem Pervez, Azhar Rasheed Cheema, Haji Mehmood and large number of PTV employees' were present on the occasion.–Staff Reporter

Ushna enters Egypt ITF doubles semis

LAHORE - National ladies tennis champion and FFC sports ambassador Ushna Suhail and her German partner Anatasia Reimchen defeated Czech duo Natalie Novotina and Natalie Kallminzerova in Women Professional Circuit ITF Tournament quarterfinals in a closely-contested match 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) to reach the semifinals. Both the pairs were at 3-3 on serve as first break came at 4-3 when Ushna and partner held their serve with next break to win the first set 6-3. In the second set, both sides kept altering baseline and cross court long rallies to hold serves till 6-6. Ushna and partner were 6-1 in tiebreak with opponents coming close to level at 6-5 but a net winner on last match point helped Pak-German pair win the match. Ushna duo meet Russian duo Ksenia Bekker and Elina Neply in semifinals.–Staff Reporter

Wajid, Awais in badminton singles semis

LAHORE - Wajid Ali, Awais Zahid, Azeem Sarwar and Rizwan Azam reached the semifinals of the National Badminton Championship 2015. SNGPL’s Wajid will take on Wapda’s Awais in the first semifinal while Wapda’s Azeem will vie against NBP’s Rizwan in the second semifinal. In the first quarterfinal played on Friday, Wajid brushed aside Shabbar Hussain of Wapda by 21-19, 21-17 to qualify for semifinals while Awais edged out Abdur Rehman of SNGPL by 21-17, 21-17 to book his berth in the semis. In the third quarterfinal, Azeem carved out hard-fought victory against Murad Ali of NBP 25-23, 13-21, 21-18 to qualify for the last four while in the fourth and last quarterfinals, Rizwan felt no difficulty in thrashing Irfan Saeed of Wapda by 21-13, 21-11 to confirm his semifinal berth.–Staff Reporter

Wozniacki ousted at WTA Stanford event

STANFORD - Danish top seed Caroline Wozniacki slumped to a shock 6-4, 6-2 defeat to 60th-ranked Varvara Lepchenko in her opening match of the WTA Tour's Stanford tournament on Thursday. World number five Wozniacki was kicking off her US hardcourt campaign in her first match since playing Wimbledon last month. After dropping the first set against Lepchenko, Wozniacki lost her serve twice early in the second and fell behind 4-1 before losing the set 6-2. "I just followed my plan," said Lepchenko, who hammered 26 winners and had just 17 unforced errors. "The plan was to be aggressive, and when I had to be on defense, be on defense. "But when I had my chances I was aggressive and I did that until the last point, and it worked out for me tonight." The Uzbek-born American needed only 92 minutes to post her third career win over a top-five opponent and book a quarter-final date with Germany's 63rd-ranked Mona Barthel.–AFP

Lahore lift 1st Rugby League title

LAHORE – Lahore lifted the 1st U-20 Rugby League title after thrashing Lodhran 20-7 in the final played here at the DHA rugby ground Thursday night under floodlights. A great number of spectators were present on the occasion to witness the final. Lahore dominated the final from the first half under the captaincy of Daud Gill while Osama scored first try of the match and at the end of first half, Lahore was leading by 5-0. In second half, Lahore scored two more tries, one by Umair Dogar and other by Jahantab Sajjad. In the last moment of second half, Sajawal from Lodhran scored a try with the help of captain Hassan Shah. Former rugby captain Umer Islam Butt, head coach Shakeel Ahmed and manager training and education Syed Mozzam Shah distributed trophies among the winners and runners-up.–Staff Reporter