When the World Turned Into a Ball

 

When the World Turned Into a Ball

On July 15, Sunday evening, World Cup 2018 closed in great style. France, it will be recorded, is the new champion of global football. Tiny Croatia, with a population less than aquarter of greater Delhi, is ranked second — deservedly(याग्यतानुसार/ख़ूबी पर) —as it played with style and dominated(श्रेष्ठ होना/प्रभुत्व) much of the game, before falling 2-4 to the champions of 1998. Exhaustion(थकावट/शून्यीकरण) had a role to play in Croatia’s defeat(हार), after all. It had played 90 minutes of football more than France before Sunday. The final scoreline is the highest in a Cup final since 1966; 2.6 goals were scored on average per game, the highest since Brazil 2014 this century. Russia 2018 saw otherwise stodgy Fifa, football’s global administrator, introduce(परिचय कराना/आरंभ करना) the video assistant referee (VAR). This boosted(बढ़ाया/प्रोत्साहित करना) the number of penalties awarded over a total of 64 matches to a record 29, 11more than 2002’s record. Fittingly, one of the goals conceded(स्वीकार किया) by Croatia on Sunday came through a VAR review. Without such a mechanism, allegations(आरोपों/इलज़ाम) of favouritism and discretion(निर्णय/विवेक) by match referees proliferate. The VAR takes much ambiguity(अस्पष्टता) out of refereeing calls. It is welcome.

At 19, Frenchman Kylian Mbappé becomes the youngest player to score two goals in a Cup game since 1958, when 17-year-old Pelé created the record. Egypt’s goalie, Essam El-Hadary, 45, becomes the most senior player to start a Cup game. Fifa has tightened(कड़े) rules about which accidental deflections(विक्षेपण ) into one’s own net are attributed(जिम्मेदार ठहराया/मत्थे मढ़ना) as own goals. Unsurprisingly(आश्चर्य) , this led to a record 12 own goals being listed in 2018. Luka Modric of Croatia deserves(हकदार/योग्य होना) his player of the tournament award, eclipsing(ग्रहण लगा) underwhelming performances from superstars like Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar. After a month of feasting(आनंदित करना/दावत ) on the Beautiful Game, football’s quadrennial feast is over. Russia showed itself up to be superb hosts, the tournament softening(नरम बनाना) the image of Vladimir Putin — seen in the stands in several games — both as president and as more than a hard-abs exponent(प्रतिपादक) of the martial(लड़ाकू/जंगी) (pun very much intended) arts. Hopefully, Qatar 2022 will host a show to at least match Russia 2018.

 

 

Important vocabulary

1.Dominated(श्रेष्ठ होना/प्रभुत्व)
Synonyms: command, control, dictate, influence, lead
Antonyms: follow, lose, obey, mismanage, neglect

2.Exhaustion(थकावट/शून्यीकरण)
Synonyms: collapse, consumption, debilitation, debility, enervation
Antonyms: ability, health, strength, vigor, energy

3.Defeat(हार),
Synonyms: beating, blow, breakdown, collapse, debacle
Antonyms: accomplishment, achievement, boon, success, win

4.Conceded(स्वीकार किया)
Synonyms: accept, admit, allow, capitulate, cave in
Antonyms: defend, deny, disallow, disapprove, dispute

5.Ambiguity(अस्पष्टता)
Synonyms: doubt, uncertainty, vagueness, anagram, doubtfulness, dubiety
Antonyms: certainty, clarity, clearness, definiteness, explicitness

6.Attributed(जिम्मेदार ठहराया/मत्थे मढ़ना)
Synonyms: apply, associate, blame, connect, credit
Antonyms: disconnect

7.Eclipsing(ग्रहण लगा)
Synonyms: concealment, darkening, decline, diminution, dimming
Antonyms: increase

8.Deserves(हकदार/योग्य होना)
Synonyms: earn, gain, get, justify, merit
Antonyms: fail, forfeit, lose, miss, pass

9.Martial(लड़ाकू/जंगी)
Synonyms: belligerent, hostile, military, aggressive, bellicose
Antonyms: kind, nice, civil, peaceful

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