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Tactical changes get Nigeria’s World Cup back on track

first_imgCloudy skies over Luzon due to amihan Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Jury of 7 men, 5 women selected for Harvey Weinstein rape trial However, the impact of German coach Gernot Rohr should not be under-estimated.Following Nigeria’s limp 2-0 opening loss to Croatia, the team faced the prospect of being eliminated from the tournament.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownRather than stick with what had got Nigeria to the World Cup at a canter, Rohr opted for change.As well as bringing in the speedy Musa as one of three changes to the starting lineup, Rohr altered the positions of his two standout players. Captain John Obi Mikel was moved back from a more offensive midfield position to act as a shield in front of the defense, a role he’s accustomed to at his club, Tianjin Teda in China, and formerly at Chelsea. And Victor Moses, who has been part of Nigeria’s attacking unit for years, was brought back to play as a box-to-box wing-back — as he does for Chelsea. “We have much to learn and remain modest, but with this spirit you can perhaps hope against Argentina for a surprise,” he said.Following what’s gone at this World Cup, it’s unlikely many will consider a Nigeria victory over Argentina a massive surprise.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LATEST STORIES Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Peru striker hospitalized after head collision at World Cup Nigeria head coach Gernot Rohr, right, talks with his players as they celebrate their first goal during the group D match between Nigeria and Iceland at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Volgograd Arena in Volgograd, Russia, Friday, June 22, 2018. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)VOLGOGRAD, Russia — Coaches often get the criticism when things go awry on the pitch, and arguably don’t get enough of the credit when things turn out just right.Ahmed Musa has clearly been the focus of attention for getting Nigeria’s World Cup campaign back on track after his two well-taken goals in a 2-0 victory over Iceland on Friday in Volgograd.ADVERTISEMENT Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Bicol riders extend help to Taal evacueescenter_img “It was a direct response to the Croatia result. We had to change something and we wanted to push more forward,” Rohr said. “They are playing in their clubs in these positions so they had to accept to play also for the country in these positions.”Admittedly the changes didn’t seem to give Nigeria an immediate attacking dividend, though the team did look more cohesive as a defensive unit.So Rohr was ready for another change.After a fairly insipid first half when Nigeria didn’t register a shot on target, the team came out for the second with renewed purpose after Rohr’s team-talk. Rohr also used the break to substitute defender Bryan Idowu for the more attack-minded Tyronne Ebuehi, a change that almost immediately gave the team more thrust up front.Within seconds of the restart, Nigeria had its first shot on target and in the 49th minute, the Super Eagles took the lead with one of the goals of the tournament. After a swift counterattack, Musa deftly controlled a Moses cross before slamming the ball past Iceland goalkeeper Hannes Halldorsson on the half-volley. Musa got a second in the 75th after mazing his way into the Iceland penalty area and past Halldorsson, before calmly picking his spot in the Iceland net.ADVERTISEMENT Taal victims get help from Kalayaan town Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew MOST READ In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ Christopher Tolkien, son of Lord of the Rings author, dies aged 95 Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Musa said the coach’s attacking intent with the substitution was clear, and gave the players confidence that “we don’t have to go for last-minute to win the game.”Iceland coach Heimir Hallgrimsson was certainly impressed.“All the credit to him,” Hallgrimsson said. “It’s a really exciting future if they keep with the same squad. Nigeria is in good hands with this coach.”On the eve of the match, the 64-year-old Rohr, who has previously coached Gabon, Niger and Burkino Faso, knew that questions about his future would be asked if Nigeria lost against Iceland. It’s doubtful that his tenure at Nigeria would have lasted much beyond the World Cup, given Nigeria’s high propensity to change managers.The team, Rohr said, remained defiant in the face of the criticism following the Croatia defeat.“You have to show that you are a unit when you lose,” he said.Next up, Argentina.Coach Jorge Sampaoli is bearing the brunt of Argentina’s poor start to the tournament — a 3-0 loss to Croatia following a 1-1 draw with Iceland.Nigeria will face Argentina in its last Group D match on Tuesday in St. Petersburg. A win for Nigeria would be enough to advance, and a draw could also be enough depending on the result of the Croatia-Iceland game.Rohr is hopeful his young charges — Nigeria is the youngest squad at the World Cup — will push on against Lionel Messi’s Argentina. View commentslast_img read more


Spotlight will be on Mbappe’s behavior as he returns for PSG

first_imgGov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown LATEST STORIES Irritated by what he had seen, Meunier said the teen striker’s behavior was not worthy of a future great.“If players like (Zinedine) Zidane and Ronaldo became legends, it’s because they played with pride and desire on the pitch,” Meunier said at the time. “Their goal wasn’t to play-act or things like that.”France coach Didier Deschamps also shouted at Mbappe to stop complaining to the referee after he was given a yellow card for dropping to the ground and simulating an injury late in the quarterfinal match against Uruguay.The World Cup raised Mbappe’s profile to such an extent he is considered a natural successor to Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo — the world’s two best forwards — and at PSG he is pushing Neymar close for star billing.During Paris Fashion Week on Thursday, a model wore a shirt with Mbappe’s name and face printed on it for designer Manish Arora’s ready-to-wear collection.ADVERTISEMENT Articulate, bright, cultured, young and athletically gifted, Mbappe is a marketing dream and has a worldwide appeal far beyond soccer. But while his meteoric rise continues unabated, his petulance is developing alongside it.The reason for his three-game ban was a red card — the second of his PSG career — followed by even more needless comments.He was sent off during injury time on Sept. 1 in a 4-2 win at Nimes, having earlier scored his fourth league goal in only three games.Mbappe reacted wildly to a challenge from behind, shoved his opponent angrily to the ground and was then restrained by teammates. He received a straight red, though he was also booked in the first half for kicking the ball away when a free kick he disagreed with was given to Nimes.But it was Mbappe’s post-match comments which could potentially cause PSG problems, notably in big Champions League games.Asked if he regretted his dismissal Mbappe said he did not, remarkably adding he would do the same again.It was a brazen comment which he tried to justify, saying: “I can’t tolerate this kind of (foul), which has nothing to do on a soccer field.”Reacting this way in a Champions League semifinal match against Barcelona or Real Madrid might suit Mbappe’s notion of sporting justice, but it would severely hamper his teammates playing with 10 men. Hardly the best advert for a team player.Also, Mbappe’s comments about unfairness are somewhat at odds with his own play-acting during the World Cup. Cynical challenges from behind are something Mbappe is right to complain about, but shouldn’t he also eradicate his own play-acting?PSG has won its first seven league games but lost its Champions League opener at Liverpool 3-2 last week, with Mbappe carelessly losing the ball for Liverpool’s winner. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. The 19-year-old Paris Saint-Germain forward will return from a three-game suspension on Saturday at Nice with questions being asked about his attitude.It all started at the World Cup.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissMbappe helped France win the title by scoring four goals and displaying breathtaking individual performances , but he also drew attention for his antics during the latter stages. Late in games against Uruguay and Belgium he was time-wasting, play-acting, provoking opponents and talking back to referees.“At Paris I’ve rarely seen him time-waste like he did against us at the end of the game,” Belgium defender Thomas Meunier, his PSG teammate, said after the Belgians lost to France in the World Cup semifinals. Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award FILE – In this Sept. 1, 2018 fie photo, PSG’s Kylian Mbappe kicks the ball during the League One soccer match between Nimes and Paris Saint-Germain at Jean-Bouin stadium in Nimes, southern France. The spotlight will be on Kylian Mbappe when Paris Saint-Germain plays at Nice on Saturday Sept. 29, 2018, as the 19-year-old France star returns from a three-game suspension with questions being raised about his attitude. (AP Photo/Claude Paris, File)PARIS — The spotlight will be on Kylian Mbappe for different reasons this weekend.Not for his silky skills, his searing speed, or his ruthless finishing, but for his behavior.ADVERTISEMENT Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California collegecenter_img Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew View comments Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum MOST READ Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title PSG coach Thomas Tuchel’s immediate priority should be to calm Mbappe down and get him to see the big picture.MONACO’S SLUMPWhat has happened to one of the most entertaining sides in Europe?Monaco won the French league and reached the Champions League semifinals in 2017, scoring more than 150 goals. But this season’s laborious Monaco team is in 18th place and coach Leonardo Jardim seems to have lost his touch.A loss at sixth-place Saint-Etienne on Friday will crank up the pressure on Jardim, who last year was considered among Europe’s best.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Healthier living helps USA veterans Bird, Taurasi on court Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines?last_img read more


Arsenal table £28.5m bid for midfielder, as Chelsea star nears Emirates switch

first_img 4 Another day, another Petr Cech story… Check out the latest, below, then click right to see which midfielder is NOT on his way to the Emirates – The ‘will he, won’t he’ transfer rumour of the summer must be Petr Cech. Everyone knows Arsenal need a reliable man between the sticks, and Cech fits the bill, but can they persuade Jose Mourinho to let the goalkeeper move to one of his Premier League title rivals? The Daily Mirror are reporting the Gunners are willing to make Cech their best-ever paid shot-stopper, with a contract of £100,000. Will the Czech Republic star be playing in the red of Arsenal next season? Arsenal transfer blow? Atletico Madrid have targeted Porto’s Jackson Martinez – Atletico Madrid are the latest in a long line of clubs who have been linked with Arsenal target Jackson Martinez. It looks clear the Colombian will leave Porto this summer but where will he go? The Gunners looked an obvious option, but Spanish newspaper AS are reporting it’s Atletico Madrid who have moved to the front of the race. 4 Is this the man to provide the screen for Arsenal’s defence? Read all about the latest rumours, below, then find out which midfielder is NOT expected to make a move to the Gunners by simply clicking the yellow arrow above! – William Carvalho has long been linked with a move to the Premier League with Arsenal and Manchester United chasing the Portuguese midfielder. David Moyes was very keen on the Sporting Lisbon but was sacked before he could sign the 23-year-old. That has left Arsene Wenger as the only man left in the race and The Sun are reporting the Gunners have tabled a £28.5m bid. The transfer window will open officially in just 11 days time, and the speculation is reaching fever pitch as Premier League clubs get set to splash the cash.Arsenal  are expected to be one of the busiest players in the market as Arsene Wenger sets his sights on finally winning the championship.But what’s the latest gossip surrounding their transfer plans? talkSPORT takes a look.Click the right arrow above to see the players linked with a switch to the Emirates… No go! One one who won’t be on his way to Arsenal is Geoffrey Kondogbia. Find out which Arsenal target Atletico Madrid have set their sights on by clicking right…. – After knocking Arsenal out of the Champions League with Monaco, Geoffrey Kondogbia was the man Gunners fans wanted to see in their colours [OK, we know they have the same colours, shirt then. Does that make you happy?]. The Gunners had reportedly asked the Ligue 1 club whether they were interested in selling the France star this summer but, according to French football expert Matt Spiro, he’s not on the agenda. The journalist claims the 25-year-old is more likely to move to Italy or Manchester City in the summer. 4 4last_img read more


WATCH: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang shows off INSANE skills

first_img1 Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang shows off his incredible skills Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is known as one of the best strikers in Europe – and one of the fastest players in world football.However, he shouldn’t just be known for his speed, with the Gabon international also exceptionally talented with the ball.Taking part in a skill video, he completes some ridiculous tricks, and even scores a basket with the ball!You can watch the entire video below…last_img



first_imgA Donegal businessman has turned the search for love into a clever marketing tool for his festival. Joseph Jackson has cleverly used the dating app TINDER to market his forthcoming food festival which takes place this weekend.And he has ben inundated with people for his festival which takes place in Letterkenny this weekend. The casual dating app has become a social media phenomenon and has completely dominated the dating scene all over the world.People upload their profiles on to the app – and can then search hundreds of other profiles within 100 miles of their location in their attempts to find ‘love’ or ‘lust’.The concept is very simple, if you like someone’s profile you can swipe left for ‘nope’ or right for ‘like’.Once you successfully match with someone you can then converse with them and find out more about them. TINDER has been an incredible success in the dating industry, but that hasn’t stopped businesses from using it as a social media marketing platform.Dominoes Pizza gave away FREE pizza to users on TINDER on Valentine’s Day earlier this year and they got over 230,000 matches in the process.Businesses use TINDER to grab the attention of people who may be unaware of their brand, product or event. Joe Jackson, who has organised the Home-grown Food Festival which takes place this weekend in Letterkenny decided to use TINDER to generate more exposure for the event.He got over ONE HUNDRED matches on TINDER and the decision to use the dating tool to market his business has been a fantastic success. Joe told Donegal Daily. “I have heard of other businesses using TINDER to create awareness of their brand or the new product they’ve launched, so I decided to do the same.“It was a bit of craic really, but I thought it would do no harm and it certainly didn’t.“Basically, I created my profile, but all that was on it was pictures that exclusively related to this year’s festival. While Joe attracted plenty of interest from users on TINDER with images of the tasty treats on offer at the festival, he landed himself in hot water with TINDER watchdogs. “I got a great reaction and had lots of people enquire about the festival which was great, but some users complained because I wasn’t using the dating app for the reasons it was designed for.“I was removed from TINDER for about a day before they re-instated my profile.“It was a great way to generate exposure on the event we have organised, and I wish we had done it sooner.Joe did say he had to let some TINDER users down gently when they looked to converse with him in their search for love.“Some users from both sexes were keen to converse with me, but I had to let them know nicely that I wasn’t interested in using TINDER for that and just wanted to promote the festival!The two-day Home-Grown Food Festival kicks-off tomorrow at the LYIT campus and it promises to be a great event.DONEGAL BUSINESSMAN DISCOVERS FESTIVAL-GOERS HAVE AN APPETITE ……..FOR LOVE! was last modified: July 9th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more



first_imgThree young Inishowen men broke into the home of a businessman before tying up two young girls and threatening them with a fake gun.Letterkenny court.Jason Bonner, 19, and two other accomplices burst into the house in Carndonagh on September29th last before taping the mouths and hands of one of the girls. The young gang believed there was a substantial amount of tobacco and cash in the house which belonged to Patrick Pembroke of The Mullins, Carndonagh.However, when the men broke into the house, the owner wasn’t present, but his grand-daughter Daniella Doherty and her friend Shannon Doherty were inside the house.Daniella Doherty opened the door and it was then forced in by one of the other men.She was thrown to the ground and had her hands, mouth and head taped.The men told the girls they had a gun, although the court heard that gun was never produced to the girls.It was later discovered by Gardaí that the gun the men had with them during the robbery was an imitation firearm.While Daniella Doherty lay bound on the ground, Shannon Doherty was told to put tobacco and money into a bag which the thieves had brought with them.The men frantically searched the house, but found only six packets of cigarettes and just €58 in cash.However, Shannon Doherty managed to escape from the house and was able to raise the alarm.Members of her family then apprehended Jason Bonner of Aghilly, Buncrana and kept him under restraint until Gardaí arrived at the scene and arrested him.Frank Bonner, the father of the accused, said the nature of the crime and the repercussions of the robbery has had a profound effect on his son and the entire family.He said, “As a family we’ve just been left devastated by what happened. We just couldn’t believe Jason had been involved in this sort of crime.“It left us dumbfounded, and it absolutely disgraced our entire family. The pain and trauma the two girls suffered as a result of the robbery is just tragic.”When quizzed as to whether or not his son had any remorse for his part in the robbery, Mr Bonner said his remorse was total and genuine.“Jason is coming to terms with what he done, and he knows it was a terrible thing he was a part of. He is totally remorseful for his actions.“That doesn’t make everything ok, but I know he’s deeply sorry for what he’s done and his remorse is total and genuine.”Mr Bonner also revealed his son had tried to take his own life and he had been forced to get psychiatric help for his son.“I’m not looking for sympathy for Jason, he has to be held accountable for his actions. But we were so worried about him we had him signed into a mental institution.“He was self-harming and had made attempts to take his own life, we were so worried about him and we realise he needs psychological support.“He needs to be involved in something active during the week, and needs to speak to a mental health professional once-a-week.”Barrister Damien Crawford said the Bonner family are a decent hard working family and the actions of their son had caused them great distress and embarrassment.He said the accused was remorseful for his actions and asked to pen a letter to his victims, but was advised not to do it, he also offered them €2,000 as compensation for his actions.He also appealed against a custodial sentence for his client, saying that he needs specialist help from medical professionals, and with the support of his loving family can help turn his life around.Judge Matthew Deery said the men were out of their depth and didn’t fully understand the seriousness of the crime they were about to commit.“They didn’t expect the girls to be there, and Shannon Doherty and Daniella Doherty have been deeply affected by the ordeal.“Daniella Doherty probably suffered greater trauma because she was bound, but both were subjected to awful ordeals.“I’m taking into account by what was said by Mr Crawford and I’m satisfied listening to their evidence that they’ll be able to help Jason to stop re-offending,” he said.He jailed Bonner for two and a half years but suspended the sentence and ordered him to keep the peace for three years.The two other men will be dealt with after having their cases adjourned until December.TEENAGE GANG TERRIFIED YOUNG GIRLS DURING BOTCHED ROBBERY was last modified: July 19th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:CarndonaghcashFrank BonnerJason BonnerJudge Matthew DeeryLetterkenny Circuit Courtrobberylast_img read more



first_imgHome invasions, creeper burglaries and attacks on the elderly are too common in Donegal recently. Crime prevention meetings and vigilante community groups have been set up to try to tackle the burglary spike in the county but many are wondering: where are Donegal’s gardaí?We’ve compiled the latest Garda deployment figures from across the county to show where our Gardaí are located, and from where they have disappeared over the past seven years.  by Rachel McLaughlinDD SPECIAL DATA REPORT: WHERE ARE DONEGAL’S GARDAI? was last modified: March 13th, 2014 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:burglariesDepartment of JusticedeploymentfiguresGardaiinfographStaffstatisticslast_img read more


South Africa welcomes back Olympic heroes

first_img24 August 2016Today we welcome home Team RSA . They showed what it means to #teamSArise @MorningLiveSABC @SPORTATSABC—Vaylen Kirtley (@VaylenKirtley) August 23,2016Hundreds of South Africans from all walks of life, complete with flags andvuvuzelas, greeted the South African Olympians returning home. Team South Africalanded at OR Tambo Airport early on Tuesday, 23 August 2016 from their successfulRio Games campaign where they won 10 medals, including two golds.Despite a delay of the team’s flight from Sao Paulo, the patient crowd, deckedout in South African flags and even in traditional dress, kept the celebratory moodgoing, with quintessential South African singing and dancing.#teamSArise Morefans have piled into the arrivals hall. Flags, banners, whistles and vuvuzelas in fullforce. ML— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) August 23,2016Introduced by Minister of Sport Fikile Mbalula, the South African team receivedan ecstatic welcome from fans as they walked into the arrivals hall. The loudestcheers were for gold medal athlete Caster Semenya.#teamSArise CasterSemenya fans in full voice! ML—EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) August 23,2016Fellow gold medal winner Wayde van Niekerk and silver medallist SunetteViljoen were unable join the rest of the team on their return. The other medalwinners, including rowers Lawrence Brittain and Shaun Keeling, the rugby sevensteam, swimmers Chad le Clos and Cameron van der Burgh, triathlete HenriSchoeman and long jumper Luvo Manyonga came out to greet the crowds, signingautographs and taking selfies with local fans.Crazy atmosphere at the welcoming in JHB right now !! #teamSArise @teamsouthafrica—Henri Schoeman (@H_Schoeman) August 23,2016Minister MbalulaIncase you missed out on this mornings greatness from South Africans welcomingtheir stars @MbalulaFikile.—Brand South Africa (@Brand_SA) August 23, 2016Mbalula thanked the entire team on behalf of the country, saying that everyoneshould be proud of “this bunch of winners… even those who didn’t win medals, wesaw them fighting for our country and (they) will become heroes next time”.@teamsa16 gets rewarded for theirhardwork by @sascoc & @MbalulaFikile during the mediapress briefing. #teamSArise—Brand South Africa (@Brand_SA) August 23,2016The minister presented the medal winners with incentive rewards promised bythe sport ministry before the games began. Gold medal winners would receive R500000, silver winners R250 000 and bronze winners R100 000.Gold medallists Van Niekerk and Semenya, Mbalula said, would also receiveR100 000 bonus for their wins, Van Niekerk would get an additional R50 000 for hisworld record. Silver medallists would get an extra R70 000 and bronze-winners R50000.Mbalula also reiterated that while the rewards may not be much compared towhat international stars receive, he vowed to do all he could to ensure that allSouth African athletes from all sporting disciplines are compensated better in thefuture and are able to focus on becoming world class athletes.Mbalula also awarded medals of excellence to the athletes for building SouthAfrica’s sporting reputation on an international level.@MbalulaFikile handing over medalsof excellence to @teamsa16 for theirhardwork at #Rio2016 . #teamSArise—Brand South Africa (@Brand_SA) August 23,2016Fans’ reactionsIncredible Support for South African Olympians arriving at ORTIA thismorning. #Rio2016#teamSArise—gsport4girls (@gsport4girls) August 23,2016Xolani took an early Gautrain from Tshwane to get a front row view of thesporting heroes. “Ten medals is such a huge victory for the team and South Africa,”he said. “The two gold medals for running were especially cool, because it meansour athletes are now getting the international respect they deserve.”Madri from the East Rand, proudly waving a South African flag, said she owedit to the team to come out and welcome them back as thanks for all their hardwork, “especially Caster, she has been through so much to get where she is today,finally winning the gold”.Peter Davis from Johannesburg is also proud of the gold medal wins, butpointed out that both the swimming team and athletes in some of the lesser knownsports deserved to get as much appreciation for their accolades. “Also the rugby(sevens) team (who won the bronze medal), they fought hard for that medal. Iwatched all their games, and it was a tough fight… they really earned it.”On behalf of the team, Semenya thanked South Africans for their supportduring the Games, adding that her win in particular was dedicated to her family fortheir support in helping her achieve the ultimate prize of Olympic glory.Caster Semenya thanks the world for supporting #TeamSARise—Bafana Nzimande (@nzimandebafana) August23, reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using materiallast_img read more


Springboks start gearing up for ‘very big year’

first_img22 May 2014Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer will evaluate a squad of 36 players when the first national training camp of 2014 takes place in Durban from 25 to 28 May. The squad, announced earlier this week by the South African Rugby Union, includes veteran World Cup winners Victor Matfield and Schalk Burger.On the other side of the coin, eight uncapped players were named, including S’bura Sithole of the Cell C Sharks, former South African Sevens Player of the Year Cornal Hendricks and Marnitz Boshoff from the Lions, the Toyota Cheetahs’ Lood de Jager and Teboho “Oupa” Mohoje, Marcel van der Merwe and Jacques du Plessis from the Vodacom Bulls, and Damien De Allende from the DHL Stormers.An interesting selection was that of Cheetahs’ flank Heinrich Brussow, not so much based on his performances, which have been very good, but based on his smaller size, which is not typical of the bigger players usually favoured by Meyer.‘Hungry for test rugby’Discussing the selection of Matfield and Burger, Meyer said in a statement: “Victor and Schalk have been out of rugby for a long time. They’ve really been in great form recently and the fact that they have not been with the Boks for more than two years has made them hungry for test rugby yet again.“It’s great to welcome them back into the Springbok fold and I know both of them can still add a lot of value to the team with the Rugby World Cup in 2015 looming.“I’m also looking forward to working with Heinrich for the first time. He’s been playing very well for the Toyota Cheetahs since returning from injury and brings a lot of experience.“However, the message to every player in this training squad is clear – everyone must accelerate in each area from the first moment we are together as a team and that inclusion in this squad is no guarantee of selection.”Tried and tested?With the South African Super Rugby teams, apart from the table-topping Sharks, all in the bottom half of the standings, the form shown by the country’s franchises has been lower than what would have been hoped for, leading some to speculate that Meyer could turn to the tried and tested when the first Springbok team of the year, to play the World XV on 7 June, is announced.The coach said injuries have been a concern, but they have allowed other players to press their claims for selection. There are also a number of players in the squad who are still nursing niggles or who recently returned from long-term injuries.“It looks like most of the guys are improving weekly and a few new players have put up their hands, which is good to see with the first match of the season, against the World XV in Cape Town, only a few weeks away,” said Meyer.“It’s also very encouraging to see a bunch of new players emerging from Vodacom Super Rugby. This camp will provide us with a great opportunity to work with these players before the squad for the Castle Lager Incoming Series is finalised. I am looking forward to work with these players for the first time.‘A very big year for us’“This is a very big year for us,” he added, “and the players know they will have to step up a gear, be sharp and focused from the moment we get going in Durban.“We have 14 very challenging matches ahead in 2014 and it’s imperative that we build on what was a good season last year.”Eye on the 2015 Rugby World CupLooking at the big picture, Meyer continued: “It’s important that we start building continuity because there are just 18 matches left until the Rugby World Cup starts. But it’s just as important to recognise continuous good form. We also have a number of players struggling with injury niggles or returning from injury which we have to assess.”Only one overseas-based players was included in the forthcoming camp. Japan- based scrumhalf Fourie du Preez, who played for the Springboks in 2013, was invited to the camp in Durban as he is available for the Castle Lager Incoming Series against Wales and Scotland, as well as against the Samsung-sponsored World XV.SPRINGBOK TRAINING SQUADForwards: Tendai Mtawarira, Trevor Nyakane, Marcel van der Merwe, Jannie du Plessis, Frans Malherbe, Coenie Oosthuizen, Bismarck du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Eben Etzebeth, Lood de Jager, Victor Matfield, Flip van der Merwe, Heinrich Brussow, Marcell Coetzee, Siya Kolisi, Willem Alberts, Jacques du Plessis, Teboho Mohoje, Duane Vermeulen, Schalk BurgerBacks: Fourie du Preez, Francois Hougaard, Johan Goosen, Marnitz Boshoff, Jean de Villiers, Damian De Allende, Jan Serfontein, Juan de Jongh, JJ Engelbrecht, S’bura Sithole, Frans Steyn, Lwazi Mvovo, Bjorn Basson, JP Pietersen, Cornal Hendricks, Willie le RouxSAinfo reporter and SA Rugbylast_img read more


The race is over

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Driving down the road it is impossible not to notice how fast the corn crop is maturing (technically dying). The corn crop went from having some green left in it to all brown in a matter of days. While fast maturing corn is a good thing for providing growers with dry corn at harvest, it also adds to the last chapter of a very interesting growing season. The fast maturation did not begin in September, but rather it actually started in June.Most growers will spend years talking about the amount of rain they received in June. Depending where the rain gauge was located it could have seen anywhere from 5 to 18 inches during the month of June. The rain definitely set the tone for yield expectations. The rain also set the tone for root health, nitrogen longevity and the corn plant’s overall resilience — all of which a corn grower can see firsthand in their corn fields. But, the other part of the story of June, most growers are not talking about is the amount of sunlight the corn fields received during the month.Corn really only needs three things to thrive: water, nutrients and sunlight. While this is an overly simplistic view and there are many more dynamics involved, the basics are water, nutrients and sunlight. If one of the basic ingredients is missing, then the corn plant begins to suffer. The month of June was missing sunlight. It was one of the cloudiest months with very little direct sun. But, did the corn crop ever stop growing and maturing during June? No, amazingly the corn crop kept growing. How did it do that without sunlight to drive the photosynthetic factory? The answer to that question could be seen early in July. The corn plant began to cannibalize itself in order to keep the plant growing and moving towards producing a crop. Stalks split open in early July showed very high amounts of cannibalization, telling the story of what little sunlight in June will do to a corn crop.Since June, the corn crop has been living on borrowed time. Coming out of June, the corn crop was telling us that it needed everything spoon-fed to it so it could maximize the yield potential that was left. The corn crop needed timely rains, adequate nitrogen and needed as much leaf area as possible to maximize sugar production via photosynthesis. The condition of the corn coming into September was a picture of how well the corn crop’s needs were met. If the corn fields were still green and healthy looking, then all the needs were met, while corn fields that were brown and dying proved that something was missing.The need for spoon-feeding the corn crop was really challenged in many corn fields thanks to several different factors. Factors such as lack of timely rainfall in August, running out of nitrogen thanks to leaching and denitrification early in the season, heavy infestations of northern corn leaf blight limiting photosynthesis and finally the extreme heat in early September that “baked” the corn crop to a rapid and early demise.The ultimate question is what did all these challenges ultimately do to the final yield of the corn? When walking corn fields, growers will find several interesting factors concerning their corn yields.Kernel counts have been higher than expected. Even under high stress, the corn plants put on an amazing number of kernels.Final ear counts were excellent, thanks to the fast and uniform emergence in early May.There was some kernel abortion at the tips of the ear, due to the corn plant readjusting its expectations.The kernel depth is rather shallow in most cases. The size of the kernel is very important in the final yield equation and how much depth that was lost will impact the final yield.Dry down and test weights should be very good as harvest begins.Corn stalks are weak and brittle due to a season long cannibalization and should be harvested as early as possible.The 2015 corn harvest is starting, as the combines roll through the fields, keep in mind all the different events that have occurred and let that help build your story for 2015.last_img read more