How to set your ##dining ##table for ##guests

How to set your dining table for guests

Have a fancy dinner table don’t know how to set it for formal occasions? Here are a few tips on how to make it look aesthetically nice…

Go for crisp linens: If you want to spread a table cloth, make sure it’s in linen, as this material hangs well on any surface. You can also place napkins and table mats in the same material.
Invest in Chinaware: Though expensive, the look that dainty Chinaware provides on a table during a special or festive occasion is unmatched. Invest in a set that can be used sparingly whenever you have guests over.
A sleek centerpiece: If you have a big dining table, you can decorate it with a creative centerpiece, complementing it with the decor or even with the cuisine that you’re serving. From candles and potpourri to bulbs.
Name cards on the table: For a large, formal dinner party, if you’ve invited many people, you can even keep names cards on the table, so that people know where they are expected to sit, without causing any chaos and confusion.

New cancer treatment with minimal side effects (Feb 4 is World Cancer Day)


New Delhi, Feb 3 (IANS): Bringing hope to hundreds of cancer patients, new technology which delivers high doses of radiation with great accuracy into the human body has been introduced in the Indian capital and will help patients fight the disease with minimum side effects.

The CyberKnife Robotic Radiosurgery System is an advanced method of robotic delivery of high precision radiotherapy for treatment of tumors anywhere in the body.

“This is another form of Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy (SBRT). Through this technique, we can give high dose radiation at specified locations and spare the normal tissues,” P.K. Julka, Head of Oncology at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), told IANS.

The technology delivers high doses of radiation with great accuracy in one to five sessions, unlike 30 to 40 sessions for conventional radiotherapy.

There are minimal or no side effects as compared to traditional radiotherapy procedures.

Though the technique is new in Delhi, it has been in use in Bangalore and Chennai for the last six years, Julka said, adding that it is most effective when the disease is detected in the early stages.

“Now, patients in Delhi can avail of this treatment and don’t have to go to Chennai or to Bangalore,” Julka added.

Cancer is one of the leading causes of adult deaths worldwide, accounting for 7.6 million deaths (around 13 percent of all deaths) in 2008.

A Lancet study published in 2012 showed that cancer killed nearly 556,400 people across India in 2010. In India, among men, oral cancer is the most common cancer, followed by lung cancer, while in women cervical cancer is the most common. This is followed by breast cancer.

According to Sapna Nangia, radiation oncologist at the Indraprastha Apollo hospital, Apollo Chennai was the first to carry out a cyberknife surgery in the country.

“New advancements in technology such as the CyberKnife Robotic Radiosurgery System are a significant development in cancer therapy for patients as well as doctors. It offers the most precise treatment option for a wide range of patients,” Nangia told IANS.

S. Hukku, chairman of the Roentgen BLK Radiation Oncology Centre in BLK Hospital, said over 50 patients had been treated with the new technology.

“We have successfully treated over 50 patients without any complications with the help of this technology. Hope is the most important thing needed to overcome any disease, including cancer,” said Hukku, who is a former president of the Association of Radiation Oncologists of India.

But the technique, which is quite common abroad, is not very cost effective.

“It has not been introduced in government hospitals. It costs Rs.5 lakh. If the government adopts it, then the cost will come down to Rs.1 lakh. Proposals are there with the government for introduction,” said Tejinder Kataria, chairperson of Medanta’s radiation oncology division.

Doctors said many cancers can be prevented by avoiding exposure to common risk factors, such as tobacco smoke. In addition, a significant proportion of cancers can be cured by surgery, radiotherapy or chemotherapy – especially if they are detected early.

They said awareness and timely action is the best way to fight the disease.

“Often it is the lack of awareness that poses a major impediment for successful treatment of cancer. Awareness and timely action form the key to fight the disease,” Kataria said

IPL 6 auction: Mumbai & Pune buy Ponting and Clarke for Rs. 2.12 cr & Rs. 2.1 cr respectively

CHENNAI: Players’s auction for IPL season six began here. Though, 108 players are set to go under the hammer, all eyes were on the top players from India and down-under including the Australia duo of Michael Clarke and Ricky Ponting. Ricky Ponting was bought for base price of $ 400,000 (Rs 2.1 crore) by Mumbai Indians at the IPL players’ auction.

Australia’s Michael Clarke was bought for base price of $ 400,000 (Rs 2.1 crore) by Pune Warriors. Australian batsman Luke Pomersbach was bought for base price $ 50,000 (Rs 1.5 crore) by Kings XI Punjab.

Delhi Daredevils bagged South African all-rounderJohan Botha bought for $ 450,000 (Rs 2.3 crore) andRoyal Challengers Bangalore bagged Indian pacer R P Singh for $ 400,000 (Rs 2.1 crore)

MS Dhoni: Past perfect, future tense?

MS Dhoni: Past perfect, future tense?

The Making of MSD
During that Zimbabwe tour, I remember pulling his leg about his long locks and how cricketers must look a certain way while playing for the country. In jest, I went to the extent of suggesting that his long hair might prove detrimental to his selection prospects! After listening to our banter for a while, he simply said he might well be a trendsetter. And boy, hasn’t he been one! He changed the way a generation of youngsters preferred styling their hair.

He made a smooth transition from the shy boy who spoke only when it was absolutely necessary to someone who now comfortably addresses the nation. I saw some of that intriguing journey from close quarters.

A keen observer, he learnt from the likes of [Sachin] Tendulkar and [Rahul] Dravid the importance of always doing the right thing. ‘Somebody is seeing me for the first time and hence I must make the right impression, and somebody is, perhaps, seeing me for the last time and hence it’s even more important to leave an ever-lasting impression’  –  he followed that principal to the T.

He also seems to have made a conscious decision to develop an extremely cool facade, unfazed, unchanged and unruffled regardless of the situation. Looking at him on the field, it is almost impossible to gauge whether his team is losing or winning. He’s found a Zen-like stillness in his behaviour, which is a breath of fresh air. It’s a complete departure from his predecessors: [Sourav] Ganguly was known for his liberal show of aggression, Dravid for his serious approach and Tendulkar for his over-involvement in the game. Dhoni has carved out his own distinctive ‘Captain Cool’ style; he won’t shout when someone drops a catch, just as he didn’t jump outrageously in joy when he hit a six to win the World Cup final. He plays an all-new brand of cricket, ultra-aggressive on the field, yet calm even in the most trying circumstances.

Brand Dhoni, a first of its kind, had well and truly arrived. Herein lies an important lesson for other celebrities: If you win a rat race, you’re still a rat. It’s imperative to carve your own niche, take the road less travelled and be secure about your place in the world. Dhoni’s ability to remain unfazed stems from his confidence in his abilities.

Beyond huge success, what’s left? For some, it means working tirelessly to achieve immortality. While they work on keeping their current record intact, they are equally consumed, if not more, by the thoughts of the legacy they’re leaving behind; what people will think of them when they aren’t around becomes far more important than what people think of them right now. These thoughts make people cling to whatever they have with a firm grip, which, at times, explains a dip in their performances towards the end of their career.

Dhoni, quite miraculously, doesn’t seem to bother too much about his legacy. He is acutely aware of his strengths and weaknesses, and makes no attempt to camouflage what he doesn’t have. He’s a very successful limited overs player, but his Test cricket record is nothing to boast about. Hence, it doesn’t come as a surprise that he’s already hinted at quitting tests by the end of 2013.

It’s not that he isn’t aware that cricket history has traditionally put people who’ve excelled in Tests on a higher pedestal, regardless of their ODI exploits; MSD simply doesn’t care beyond a point. He intends to keep playing the format he’s really good at, and hopes to create history by defending the World Cup title in 2015. He understands that it will be impossible for his body to sustain the workload of three formats for the next two years, and hence is likely to take a judgement call soon; he knows when to let go. Of course, his absence from the Test arena is likely to dent his brand value, but in professional sport you need to think more about the value you’re adding to the team, and not how much the market values you.

Who knows, Dhoni being Dhoni, he might just set a new trend and change the way cricket greatness and brand value is judged!

Ever after
‘I won’t be criticising cricketers to make a living’, said Dhoni a few years ago when asked about his life post cricket. It might have been a snide dig at cricket experts, but it also told us a lot about his mindset. While everyone, including the very best cricketers, doesn’t rule out anything at the outset, Dhoni seems to have perfectly planned his life after cricket, and media isn’t featuring on that list.

He already owns a motorbike racing team, and has plans to open a chain of gymnasiums across the country. One has also heard he wants to acquire land to open cricket academies and grounds.

He’s not only managing to safeguard Brand Dhoni during his playing days, but has also envisaged a future in which he’s likely to go from strength to strength. Making his own path all the way

Sachin Tendulkar to be Mumbai Indians captain

Senior batsman Sachin Tendulkar is likely to return as the Mumbai Indians captain for the sixth edition of the IPL commencing on April 3.

According to IPL sources, Tendulkar will take over from Harbhajan Singh as the captain of the side, which effectively would mean the end of Michael Clarke’s chances to lead one of the most popular franchises.

Tendulkar, who has been the leader and the face of Mumbai Indians for all the five editions relinquished the role last season as he wanted to concentrate on his batting.

Harbhajan Singh had first captained the side successfully in the Champions League T20 but couldn’t take MI to their elusive IPL triumph.

Tendulkar, who missed the first seven games of IPL’s inaugural edition due to injury, was at Mumbai Indians’ helm since its inception.

In IPL 2012, under Harbhajan, Mumbai Indians made it to the knockouts where they lost to Chennai Super Kings in the Eliminator.

There were a lot of speculations about Clarke taking over the mantle of captaincy as the team didn’t have a leader of repute but once Tendulkar agreed to don the role put to rest all the speculations regarding any chances that Clarke had whatsoever.

Tendulkar, who had recently retired from the ODIs, would ideally like to win the IPL Trophy having achieved almost all the other major milestones including World Cup, No 1 ranking in Test matches and 100 international hundreds.

Ian Bell leads England to win; India take series 3-2

Ian Bell leads England to win; India take series 3-2
England’s Ian Bell and Eoin Morgan celebrate the victory over India in the fifth ODI in Dharamshala. (PTI Photo)
DHARAMSHALA: India were desperate to stamp their authority on the one-day series against England and went into the inconsequential fifth ODI at the picturesque HPCA stadium with an unchanged team.

Scorecard Match in Pics 

Before the game, they had exuded confidence, having won the last three games convincingly. But, once they lost the toss, their strategy went for a six. The English skipper had no hesitation in bowling first in cool, helpful conditions on a pitch with a tinge of grass and plenty of bounce to trouble the best of batsmen.

The Indian top-order needed to respect the conditions and the new ball, but they chose to be flamboyant. Just when they needed to give the first half-hour to the bowlers in seaming conditions, they played like they would on a flat track and paid the penalty. Even before the half-way stage of their innings, they were down in the dumps at 79 for five.

It was thanks to another half-century by Suresh Raina and some gritty display by the lower order, India managed to lend a semblance of respectability to the total.

The Indian bowlers tried gamely, but with just 226 to defend on a fast outfield and pitch that had eased out later in the day when the sun came out, gave the home team no chance. The visitors romped home with seven wickets and 16 balls to spare, thus ending cutting India’s winning margin to 3-2.

Their victory was anchored by Ian Bell, who struck a well-paced unbeaten century (113*) to bag the Man-of-the-Match award

We have to improve as a team, admits Dhoni

The Hindu Indian skipper M.S. Dhoni playing against Pakistan in Eden Gardens, Kolkata on Thursday. Photo: V. Ganesan TOPICS cricket One-day cricket Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted that India will have to improve as a team after the hosts slumped to yet another series loss at home in Kolkata on Thursday. An insipid India produced a pathetic display as arch-rivals Pakistan spanked the hosts by 85 runs in the second cricket one-dayer to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series at the Eden Gardens. Even though Dhoni praised his bowlers for restricting Pakistan to 250, he came hard on India’s famed batting line-up which has been struggling for sometime now and has been largely responsible for the team’s forgettable results in recent times. “I think the bowlers brought us back in the game. I think when we went in to bat, we lost too many wickets. In the last 30 overs we needed 180, and the key was to have wickets in hand but we never were in a position,” Dhoni said at the post-match presentation ceremony. “Virat (Kohli) has scored runs for us, but one of the top three needs to be with the middle-order, that will make it easy. We have got the experience in the batting, it is about them coming back to form. Overall we have to improve as a team. We are a good fielding side, but we have to bowl well and develop,” he added. Pakistan rode on Nasir Jamshed’s (106) second consecutive century in the series to post 250 all out and then shot out India for a paltry 165 to record a convincing victory with two overs to spare. Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq praised Jamshed and Mohammad Hafeez (76) for putting up a match-winning 141-run opening stand, which was key to the visitor’s win today. “I think the team really played well, specially the way openers started, they gave us a really, really good start and then the bowlers did the job,” he said. “The way the wicket was playing, I think 300 was on the cards, especially the way the openers were batting.” Misbah also lauded his bowlers for dismissing India for a meagre 165. “I think the bowlers are really doing a great job, especially Junaid (Khan) who is moving it both ways and asking questions of the batsmen. (Mohammad) Irfan has his height and (Umar) Gul also bowled well today. (Saeed) Ajmal and (Mohammad) Hafeez always delivers for us,” the visiting captain said. Man-of-the-match Jamshed said playing at the historic Eden Gardens was always a dream for him. “I just enjoy my batting. The last time I missed the man-of-the-match but lucky this time they gave it to me. “I just kept a cool mind, and Hafeez played a great innings. Pitch was little bit slow, and I just played according to the ball. It was dream to play in the ground,” he said. The third and final ODI will be played at the Feroze Shah Kotla ground in New Delhi on Sunday.