Messi returns after kidney stone treatment

BARCELONA - Lionel Messi returned to training with Barcelona on Thursday after receiving treatment for kidney stones which affected his participation in December's Club World Cup. The Argentine superstar had tests ‘to assess the development of kidney stones,’ Barca reported. Messi missed Wednesday's 1-1 Copa del Rey semi-final second-leg draw with Valencia, with the Catalan side prevailing 8-1 on aggregate. The five-time world player of the year is due to start Sunday's Liga clash with Celta Vigo at the Camp Nou where he needs only two goals to become the first player in the Spanish league to score 300 goals. "With the renewed presence of Leo Messi in training, Barca is already focusing on the next Liga outing," the club said. Messi suffered renal colic, a problem commonly caused by kidney stones.–AFP

Inter-Board Sports Gala from 16th

ISLAMABAD – The Inter-Board Sports Gala 2016 will be held here at Pakistan Sports Complex from February 15 to 22. As many as 1,500 male and females players from 26 boards will participate in athletics, badminton, table tennis and hockey will participate in the event while 60 technical officials will officiate in these competitions. Talking to The Nation convener games M Shahid, who is also PSB Deputy Director General, said the male matches would be held from February 15-17 and for female events from Feb 20-21. “AJK Mirpur Board will be host board. The venues for these competitions are Jinnah Stadium, Hamidi Hall, Rodham Hall, Liaquat Gymnasium and Naseer Bunda Hockey Stadium.” He said two-day technical official’s course was also held in Jinnah Hall and was attended by 60 technical officials.–Staff Reporter

Master Motor Engineers victorious

LAHORE – Master Motor Engineers have defeated Surf Motors by seven runs in the Turk Plast Cricket Tournament quarterfinal played here at the Aligarh ground, Model Town. Batting first, Master Motor Engineers sent Rehman Qadir s/o legendary spinner Abdul Qadir and Amaar Tariq to open. In the first 10 overs, Amaar got out after making 37 whereas Rehman Qadir hit 106 and Fahadul Haq 42 runs and gave the opponents a huge target of 211 runs. Surf Motors had a very aggressive start and their first wicket fell at 36 overs in the fourth over. Their second wicket fell in the 10th over at 107 and third wicket fell at 118. For the fourth-wicket partnership, 68 valuable runs were added. When the Surf Motors were eyeing the win, Master Motor Engineers bowlers bundled out Surf Motors for 207 runs.–Staff Reporter

Nabi Yousaf Memorial Polo Cup

LAHORE - Two matches of the Nabi Yousaf Memorial Polo Cup 2016 will be contested today (Friday) here at the Lahore Polo Club (LPC) ground to decide finalists of the event. In the first match of the day to be played at 2pm, Adisseo will vie against Army Remounts while the second match will be played between Diamond Paints and Royal Palm/Master Paints at 3pm. In Pool A, all the three teams Army Remounts, Adisseo and Master Paints/Habib Metro are eligible to qualify for the final. If Army Remounts defeat Adisseo, the finalists will be decided on better goal average. In pool B, the winning team of the encounter between Diamond Paints and Royal Palm/Master Paints will qualify for the main final while the losing side will play subsidiary final. Meanwhile, LPC executive committee meeting was also held here and was presided over by LPC chief Irfan Ali Hyder and attended by executive committee members Azam Hayat Noon, Umar Niazi, Ali Malik, Agha Najib Raza Khan and LPC secretary Col (R) Shoaib Aftab while the captains of teams and members of sub committees were also present there. The main agenda of the meeting was to finalise arrangements of three high-goal events of this polo season which included Aibak Polo Cup, Punjab Polo Cup and Quaid-e-Azam National Polo Open.–Staff Reporter