I decide everything today will be done slowly.A colleague from a former life never misses an opportunity to tell me he has seen, live, an Indian win a gold medal at an Olympics. He succeeds in making me envious.But I also feel the excitement in my bones. I wake up earlier than I need to. I leave for the venue earlier than I need to. I settle into my seat in the media box earlier than I need to.Pusarla Venkata Sindhu, please make me feel that feeling.But, how would you know that when you are only 21? That the arena you will walk into will be crammed with people wanting to feel that feeling? That millions upon millions will be watching on TV back home wanting to feel that feeling? Even Abhinav Bindra - the only guy to have done what you are attempting to - wants to re-feel that feeling, urging you to end his loneliness.Headline writers are imagining the grandeur of their front pages. News stations are interviewing your mum, dad, sister, uncle, aunt - maybe even your tailor if they could - in a cataclysm of breathless coverage. Websites are digging up childhood pictures of you. Comics are making nervous jokes.They all want to feel that feeling.Yet, what you need to do is win a badminton match. Against the best player in the world. To win it, you must gallop and sprint. Smash and drop. Twist and tumble. Retrieve and attack. You must disengage from the occasion and commit to the discipline of your craft. You are 21. You must do this. The simple, everyday things on a not so simple, not every day.I am seated next to a Spanish journalist. We shake hands before the players step out and wish each other good luck. Neither of us mean it, of course.Two years ago, this journalist tells me, no one in Spain knew about Carolina Marin. Today, she is a household name. A couple of world championships and a stride right up to the top of the rankings will do that for you. An Olympic gold medal will send her fame to stratospheric levels back home.The arena needs no warming up as they enter. Lin Dan, the two time defending Olympic champion, has been waylaid in a thrilling mens singles semifinal by bitter rival Lee Chong Wei. Chen Long has coasted past Viktor Axelsen in the other one. The appetizers have been consumed. Delicious as they were, it is the main course we are here for.Sindhu saunters in, clad in a bright yellow outfit with orange shoes to complete a riot of radiance. When she gazelles on the court, her ponytail swerves in perfect harmony. This is a lithe, supple athlete that would not be out of a place at a high jump competition.Marin, in contrast, is a raging bull. Left-handed and expressive, she possesses the fiercest screech in badminton, possibly in all sport. It is Sharapovian in decibel level, Azarenkan in pitch.The two players fist-pump differently as well. Marin does an upwards rumble on hers, yelping along front on, gaze firmly focused forwards. Sindhu prefers it left-fisted and downwards with a double up and down, head lowered to urge herself on, with a Come onnnnn to accompany.The Spanish fans form pockets of core strength. In the stand facing the court and on the left. They combust with glee more often as the early exchanges favour Marin. 7-4. 10-6.Sindhu is making an iffy start to this. Shuttles sail wide or fail to clear the net. Tweeters and pundits are spouting advice everywhere but all Sindhu wants to hear is Gopichand. He settles her with the assurance of a knowing mentor. She must stay the course. Stay strong. Play like she can. Play like she has been.17-15. 17-16. 19-17. 19-18. 19-19.The cacophony in the arena is deafening. In the 400m sprint for women earlier on at these Olympics, Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas edged out Allyson Felix of the USA by the narrowest of margins, diving across the finish line at the very last second.Sindhu pulls off a similar heist here. Trailing for most of this race, she scrambles up a gasp of last-minute effort. On game point, they exchange a rampage of shots before Marin is flummoxed at the net as one sails over her head. She retrieves in desperation but can only meet the shuttle with the frame of her racquet.The only time Sindhu leads in the game is at 20-19. It is the only window of opportunity she needs. It is the first time Marin has lost a game all tournament.My Spanish journalist companion is bemused. She shuffles uncomfortably in her chair and shrugs her shoulders.Ca-Ro-Leena , Ca-Ro-Leena, beseech the Spanish fans.India. Indeeya, go the Indians.Marins playing style is demonstrably bossy. When she first won the world championships as a 21-year old in 2014, she stunned the established order with her gumption and ferocity. A year later, she repeated the trick having refined that method.In game two, suitably chastened at having conceded the first one, she starts to inflict damage. Sindhu struggles to get a read on the direction of Marins whippy forehand, especially from the back of the court. One shot goes back across from where it came, spanked from over her right shoulder. Another is met on a straighter line and arrives on Sindhus backhand, spicily at that.The Indian is reacting and keeps the points going but Marin, you sense, is a step ahead.There is a tinge of desperation as Sindhu rushes shots. One clammers into the net, the other sails wide. Gopichand periodically assures here from courtside, but the scoreboard rattles along.A Sharapovian shriek accompanies a Samprasian leap as Marin launches angrily into a shuttle to claim an 11-2 lead. 12-4. 13-5. The chair umpire repeatedly chastises Marin as she takes unscheduled breaks to towel down or grab a quick drink of water. This is another Marin patent to get under the skin of her rival. If there is an advantage to be claimed, she will claim it.Now Marin is deft and damaging at the same time.Aided by her wingspan, Sindhu is retrieving smartly but momentum - that hard to explain but easy-to-feel thing in sport - is with the Spaniard. To earn game point, Marin contorts her wrist to command the shuttle past the net, but only just. It is a heavenly flick.Seven minutes short of the one hour mark, it is confirmed that the Olympic champion will be determined by the lady to pocket the next 21 points before the other. My Spanish journalist colleague has settled back into her chair. I am standing now. She offers a toothy grin. We both know Marin is in the ascendancy.Sindhu has the heart and no shortage of skill, but Marin has the greater nuance. While playing badminton, the human body must move unlike any other sport. It must bend, leap, sprint, contort, skip sideways and forwards, sometimes all in the same rally. Marin functions with a robotic understanding of this process; Sindhu is still a work in progress. Rapid progress yes, but progress nevertheless.Sindhu concedes a few easy points to get us going in the decider and is soon trailing 9-5. The tweeting tornado is now at its peak. Trending records are being set. A ballistic arena is thirsting for more drama. The Spanish fans have seen this before, it is when their girl switches into beast mode. Sindhu though, is not inclined to play dead. Not yet. 6-9. 7-9. 8-9. 10-10.Marin has threatened to pull away decisively for much of this contest, only for the Indian to hang on by her coattails and stay rooted in the match. If she can beat three higher ranked players on her way to this final, surely she can claim a fourth scalp?Sindhu believes, but Marin resists any temptation to temper her tactical approach, fraught as it is with risk. She is searching for kills and mounts on the shuttle with stunning force as we head to a crescendo. The average rally in this game lasts 11 seconds and nine strokes. The corresponding figures for the first two games are 9/7 & 8/6.In essence, there is no quarter being asked for and none is on offer in any case. We tick past the hour mark. If I did not care as much as I did I would be be enjoying this. In this moment though, it is agonising.16-14.Sindhu has her back towards me in this game. Her glances back towards Gopichand are laced with concern. Marin is swooping over the shuttle now, sensing this moment must be seized or else it may all come to nothing. She masterfully swivels around court, and launches into a trademark smash that Sindhu can only feebly dump into the net.For one final time, the world number one has made a decisive sprint towards gold. It ends in a flicker of time with both women lying flat on court. They converge at the net, the victor in tears, the vanquished carrying a congratulatory smile. They embrace as friends and champions.One day, when the story of this contest is told, it will slave itself to the enormity of the occasion. Of what was on the line, what was won, and what was lost.Perhaps, as she gracefully climbed up the podium to collect her silver medal, Sindhu felt a twinge of regret at having fallen short. Perhaps when she was besieged by an eager media corps later, she gained a full understanding of what this moment entailed. Perhaps when her phone was returned to her after two months in Gopichands capture, she checked her Twitter page and rolled over in disbelief.In the heat of that battle though, all PV Sindhu cared about was slicing the backhand right, placing the drop shot neatly and creaming the smash with all power at her command. She did that stuff quite well, it was just that Marin did it a shade better.We fell short maybe to feel that feeling we came to feel, but over these past few days we saw a player of rare sparkle shine through.And boy, she can play. Trevor Siemian Jersey . To the surprise of many, it isnt the Wolverines but their in-state rivals the Michigan State Spartans. Kyle Rudolph Jersey . 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All of the video replays we were shown on TV were inconclusive about whether the puck had entirely crossed the line or not. OXON HILL, Md. -- Reliever Joaquin Benoit and the Philadelphia Phillies finalized a $7.5 million, one-year contract, part of the teams efforts to rebuild its bullpen.Its important in a bullpen to have different styles of pitchers, right? Philadelphia general manager Matt Klentak said Tuesday at the winter meetings. Ideally, youd have some righties and some lefties and some more experienced players blended with some younger players, and fastballs and sliders and curveballs.Benoit, a 39-year-old right-hander, has had an ERA under 3.00 for six of the past seven years. He was 3-1 with a 2.81 ERA last season, including a 0.38 ERA after the Toronto Blue Jays acquired him from Seattle in July for reliever Drew Storen. Benoit averaged 9.75 strikeouts per nine innings.Over the last seven seasons, Benoit has a 0.98 WHIP (walks and hits per inning), trailing only Kenley Jansen (0.89) and Craig Kimbrel (0.95) around the majors in that span. Benoit has 51 saves in 712 big league games.The deal comes about a month after the Phillies acquired righty reliever Pat Neshek in a trade with the Houston Astros and exercised a club option for $6.5 million in 2017 for him.The 36-year-old Neshek was 2-2 with a 3.06 ERA in 60 relief appearances with Houston last season, holding right-handed hitters to a .172 average and compiling 43 strikeouts in 47 innings.We dont hhave a premier closer, which wed love to have.dddddddddddd But last year we didnt either. ... Somebody is going to be capable of doing that, Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. What we have now is a deeper bullpen, with more experience, better pitchers.Last season, the Phillies were 14-3 in one-run games as of May 15, then went only 14-20 the rest of the way in such contests, along the way to finishing 71-91 and in fourth place in the NL East.I feel now, with the addition of Benoit and Neshek, we got better for even the fifth and the sixth, and if (Jeanmar) Gomez ends up closing, or hes down in the fifth or sixth, depending on how it all ends up, were obviously deeper and better because of that, Mackanin said. Were going to have a lot of flexibility with that.Game notes Klentak called Tommy Joseph the teams everyday first baseman as of now. Tommy showed pretty well for himself all year long and were excited to see what he can do in more of a regular role this coming year, Klentak said. Joseph hit .257 with 21 homers and 47 RBI in 315 at-bats last season. ... Benoits deal was negotiated by agents Sam and Seth Levinson. ... 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