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Football Festival is here with a bang! Gear up for FIFA World Cup 2018

Yashdeep Bajpai

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Today, when Russia takes on Saudi Arabia in the Russian capital of Moscow, the 21st World Cup tournament will officially be underway, heightening the excitement over the month-long football bonanza.

What is FIFA to the general masses?

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The excitement among people is at peak at this point of time. Some are honest to goodness, revealing that they look forward to it even though they understand nothing about football. Most women planning to watch the game admit that their only interest in the month-long tournament is spotting attractive players.
Men, however, have dictated humorous rules to their partners. These include “no talking during the game”, “the remote control belongs to me for the month”, “you should not pass in front of the TV while I am watching the game, you better crawl” and “make sure you don’t ask silly questions like is this Chelsea versus England”.

FIFA World Cup 2018

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The 21st FIFA World Cup, a quadrennial international football tournament will take place in European Russia from 14 June to 15 July 2018.

Most Expensive Football Championship

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The Russian government marked a budget of around $20 billion, later on budgeted at $ 11.8-14.0 Billion surpassing the cost of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil hereby setting the costliest the championship ever held.

Teams

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The final tournament will involve 32 national teams. A total of 64 matches will be played in 12 venues located in 11 cities. The final will take place on 15 July at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

The selected teams include the smallest country by population — Iceland, to the first timer Nordic countries (Denmark, Iceland and Sweden) and four Arab nations (Egypt, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and Tunisia).

Zabivaka — The Mascot

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Zabivaka symbolies an anthropomorphic wolf dressed in the colors of the Russian national team. Zabivaka’s name is a Russian word which means “to strike”, he describes the traits of an aspiring football player who is “charming, confident and social”.

The Match Ball

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The official match ball of the 2018 World Cup called “Telstar 18” that is based on the name and design of the first Adidas World Cup ball from 1970 (first introduced on 9 November 2017).

The Official Song

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The official song of the tournament is “Live It Up”, with vocals from Will Smith, Nicky Jam and Era Istrefi, released on 25th May. The FIFA World Cup released Official Music Video on 8th June.

The Ceremony

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The opening ceremony will be headlined by British pop icon Robbie Williams. The famous Russian soprano Aida Garifullina will join the artist on the stage. Apart from the two performers, Opera singer Placido Domingo, and Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Florez will also perform at the Opening Ceremony to give it a classical touch. Russian musicians, including pianist Denis Matsuev, global opera stars Anna Netrebko, Yusif Eivazov, Ildar Abdrazakov, and Albina Shagimuratova will also be a part of the extravaganza expected to have a live audience of over 80,000.

The final performance will include rendition of the official World Cup song titled Live It Up.

In the End — Chic Slogans

What do you need to win the World Cup? Guts, talent, ability to handle pressure, concentration, one heck of a kick or an inspirational slogan. Read on:

AUSTRALIA

Be brave, be bold, Socceroos in green and gold

BELGIUM

Red Devils on a mission

BRAZIL

More than five stars, 200 million hearts

Argentina

Together for a Dream

CROATIA

Small country, big dreams

SERBIA

One team, one dream – Serbia

SPAIN

Together we are invincible

URUGUAY

The sun shines in Russia, the sky is all light blue

PORTUGAL

The past is glory, the present is history

GERMANY

Let’s write history together

ENGLAND

Send us victorious

JAPAN

Fighting now Samurai blue!

And the most coolest of them all,

POLAND

Go Poland!

(Not much of slogan writers I suppose…)

Prepare yourself for a football festival, get your slogans and choose your team. Because football maybe kicked by foot, but strikes goal in hearts!

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Current Affairs

Sneak peek into the royal life.

Aishwarya Bhat

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What do you think about the grandeur of the ROYAL life? For sure, hearing this might give you those weird collywobbles. And why shouldn’t it? ROYAL word itself is so royal that imagining such life in 21st century might be like a dream coming true. Now the question is, what and how does it feel to be royal?

Here are few points and a sneak peek into the British royal life, talks about which are already a buzz in the town.

Teenage Romance

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Yes, teenage romance was quite prevalent in the royal life. Prince Charles met Princess Diana (his first wife) when he was just 16 years old. And, their love is known to blossom since then! In real, the Prince was earlier dating Princess Diana’s elder sister lady Sarah.

No paperwork, No license !

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Queen Elizabeth II does not need any license to drive the car. Amusing isn’t ?

No fear of getting busted by the traffic police, no traffic invoice or receipts or summons. Ain’t it an advantage? Eh!

Queen and the Prince cousins?

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Yes! Queen Elizabeth II married her third cousin, they both share the same great grand parents.

Doting mum!

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Princess Diana, when learnt that her son Williams had a crush on Cindy Crawford when he was a teenager, invited her to join them for tea at the Palace. Royal life you call it! Imagine your crush being invited at your place by your mom! Heebie-jeebies? Already?

Kate Middleton

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This amiable person carries an impeccable and dynamic personality, and knows the perfect sense of fashion. She has been selected twice as one of the most influential personalities of the world by Times magazine.

World War II affected the royal wedding!

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Queen Elizabeth’s wedding gown had to be funded during war times. Hence, collecting clothing coupons was opted as a measure. Peculiar isn’t? Royals had to face money crunch!

Facts are endless and so is the royalty, class and luxury and why shouldn’t it be? After all, that is what we call fairy tale adventures. And it would not be wrong if applied for Megan Markle and Kate Middleton.

Just keep hopes and fingers crossed. Who knows you might be among the next royals!

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Current Affairs

ABD, the Mr. 360 who dared to hit a reverse sweep against fast bowlers announces his sudden retirement, bringing an end to that glorious generation of cricketers.

Shatakshi

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AB de Villiers

The man who redefined cricket techniques and reached perfection in all forms of international cricket, AB de Villiers announced his retirement yesterday. Defining outstanding cricketing, he has been the inspiration to many people.

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There have been such marvelous players like Mr. Sachin Tendulkar, Mr. Virendra Sehwag, Mr. Adam Gilchrist, Mr. Saurav Gangly, Mr. Brendon McCullum and Mr. AB de Villiers. He managed to secure his name with these legends making his own identity. With his athletic personality and dedication towards the game, he became Mr. 360 who could hit any ball in any direction of the field.

He represented South Africa and is one of the most loved players all across the world. Indians look at ABD as the man who has thrashed the most unexpected shots, gets the most amazing catches and has been the one to hit the most stunning sixes. Even if it’s India vs South Africa World Cup Finals, when ABD comes to bat the entire crowd
chants “ABD, ABD”. That’s the kind of love he has gained from people where they forget the competition and admire the rigorous knocks of Mr. 360.

If we go down the memory lane, this is why ABD is so special and why we will remember him as The 360 degree Man:

He holds the record for the fastest 50, 100 and 150 in ODI History, all against West Indies.

He shares the World Record of the most number of sixes in a ODI innings with Rohit Sharma and Chris Gayle.

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He stunningly is the only batsman to average 50 plus in ODI’s in seven continuous calendar years from 2009-2015.

He has scored the most runs and centuries for South Africa in the World Cups with 1207 runs from 22 innings at 63.52.

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Not only a terrific batsman, he has been the only wicket keeper to score a 100 and perform 5 or more dismissals in each innings of a test.

Well, these are just the tip of the iceberg. People who have witnessed ABD batting or fielding or wicket keeping know that his excellence is beyond statistics and figures.
We cannot compile his dedication, talent and sportsman spirit in these records. He has set his own limits by winning not only matches but also the hearts of people around the world. He announced his retirement by saying, “ After 114 Test matches, 228 ODIs and 78 T20’s, it is time for others to take over. I’ve had my turn and to be honest, I’m tired.”

His sudden retirement left fans all over the world in a shock. We will no more witness ABD on the field with that positive and confident attitude towards the game. Indeed, as fans we all want him to continue playing but then we need to respect his decision.

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It is an emotional moment for all cricket fans who have been lucky to watch him reframe the concepts of cricket. His bat rotated in every direction of the field, producing the most stunning and unexpected shots that left us dumbstruck. It was a show called the ABD Show when he batted on the field.

The legend of cricket, Mr. Sachin Tendulkar said, “ To Play a reverse sweep of a fast bowler, nobody had imagined. But AB de Villiers played it.”

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The man who won hearts all through his shining cricket career will be missed by the entire cricket fraternity. He may not have any ICC Trophy to his credit as a captain, but he has the highest honor of being loved and adored by the world.
He has the honor of breaking competition in cricket and bringing people together, chanting for players and not countries. For when he played, there was no India or South Africa. It was only “ABD”.

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Current Affairs

From a Village of Millionaires to a Village of Snakes: Here are 10 Unique Indian Villages that will amaze you

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A sundry and united mixture of dynasties, traditions, languages, trends and voice — this is what India comprises of. Every state, every city, every village, entry street is different, yet fit in together like a jigsaw puzzle!

With such diversity, the Indian nomenclature has set a benchmark that can only be decoded with the help of a special Indian version dictionary.

Here are a few villages whose names and intellectuality are brainstorming!

1. Uppal

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Situated in Punjab’s Jalandhar, this village is famous for water tanks over its houses. They defy the conventional black, cylindrical costume. Instead, every home has a ship, an airplane, a car and even a horse-shaped water tank that one can view from afar. Water tanks are so cool, they have their own Halloween party everyday!

2. Malana

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Ancient village in Himachal, isolated from the world, covered by peaks, residents believe they’re predecessors of Alexander — this sounds like a place where you can escape to meditate. Touching walls or natives’ belongings can impose fine, and Akbar is their God. This village is preserving history, civics and geography since forever !

3. Dhokda

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Located in Kutch, Gujarat, this village is famous for its white revolution. This is such a raw, crude place that no one sells dairy products, rather give them for free to those who don’t rear cattle. And this is how native purity win hearts!

4. Kodinhi

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A very special village which is known for its exceptional number of twins. Out of every 1,000 mothers, 45 give birth to twins which rates this village out-of-the-way by 700% higher from the rest of the globe !

5. Hiware Bazar

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Once a cementery for farmers who committed suicides due to droughts, this village in Ahmednagar district, Maharashtra is an abode to 60 millionaires and barely and poor farmer. People are now ready to face any challenge, making Hiware Bazar the richest village in India. Hard work will always yield success, need more proof?

6. Punsari

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Model houses with toilets, primate health center, two primary schools, solar-powered lighting, independent bus system, clean drinking water at ₹4 per 20 liters water-can, well maintained drainage system — these basics doesn’t even begin to define this Gujarati village.
With Wi-Fi all over the village, CCTV at strategic points, public address system with about 140 loudspeakers, Punsari is topping the charts of development over many Metropolitans. Villagers has insurance and medi-claim as well.
Actually, it’s all about harnessing Government schemes optimally.

7. Shetphal

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Located in Solapur district of Maharastra, each house in Shetphal has an abode for guests — guests that make this village offbeat. These are the most poisonous and dangerous Cobra snakes.
Due to such hospitality of snakes, not a single case of snakebite has been reported from the village over
years. Atleast some places in the world are animal-friendly !

8. Shani Shingnapur

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Another epitome from Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, this village has its own stupefying customs. Resident houses, police station, resorts, guest houses — all WITHOUT doors and windows ++ yet no cases of theft or murder or rape. It’s time for everyone to shift to such villages.

9. Chappar

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Comprising of best female athletes, yet dishonorable scale of female feticide — irony never fails to surprise us. Chappar is a very remote village in Haryana where every female birth us celebrated throughout the village, and women no longer don veils.

10. Korkrebeller

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Because using scarecrows in farms in too mainstream !
Farmers in this village have built special areas to feed birds. The village is an abode to rare bird species, with special health care places for wounded birds. Another bird sanctuary perhaps ?

“Simple and natural things are free from obscenity and vulgarity.”

Such primitive and ordinary living, yet such treasure of knowledge and love — if there is paradise on Earth, it is here, it is here.

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