Triumph over adversity

first_imgMOST READ Renaldo Balkman also had his own mountains to scale. Chasing redemption, he is no longer the import who once choked his teammate. He is now a certified champion. —ASEANBASKETBALLLEAGUE.COMSTA. ROSA, Laguna—A campaign littered with adversity ended in a blaze of glory for San Miguel Alab Pilipinas on Wednesday night before one of the biggest crowds in Asean Basketball League Finals history at Sta. Rosa Multi Purpose Sports Complex.A hard-earned 102-93 victory over Mono Vampire of Thailand in Game 5 capped an incredible journey for the Filipino club, whose members all had remarkable stories on their rise to the top of the regional league.ADVERTISEMENT In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Truck driver killed in Davao del Sur road accident ‘Stop romanticizing Pinoy resilience’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Green group flags ‘overkill’ use of plastic banderitas in Manila Sto. Niño feast The first one was to former teammate LA Tenorio shortly after a sponsor backed out, which led to a meeting with San Miguel sports director Alfrancis Chua, who approved the sponsorship deal for Alab five games into the season.The next one was to Balkman, whom he last crossed paths in the Fiba World Cup in Spain in 2014.Man of his word“[Balkman] told me, ‘Hey man, if you ever turn yourself into this coaching thing, you have my number,” said Alapag, recalling their conversation in the World Cup.“He’s (Alapag) a man of his word,” said Balkman, who had 32 points and nine rebounds in the title-clinching win.Balkman returned to the country five years after he was slapped with a lifetime ban in the PBA for choking a teammate. He has since apologized to former PBA commissioner Chito Salud and reconciled with ex-teammate Arwind Santos.“Past is the past for me,” said Balkman. “I have a bright future. We have a championship. I told you since Day 1 that we are going to put on a show. Our focus was on one goal and that is to win the championship. Every day, we worked hard.”Almost lost in the din of the celebration was Dy’s work behind the scenes. Already coming off a financially trying first stint as a team owner, Dy still insisted on going another round and committed to fielding a team anew.From finding sponsors to putting together a competitive team, including the acquisition of Brownlee which was made possible because of his friendship with the import’s agent, Sheryl Reyes, Dy’s imprints were all over the title run.“This (championship) makes everything worth it,” said Dy. Bulldogs, Maroons continue building process; eagles eye 4-0 start “I’m just proud of this team,” said Alapag, while carrying son, Ian, during the postchampionship press conference.“We were such a tight-knit group that when you do that, you give yourself an opportunity to win. Being with these guys, seeing the growth in all of them. Anytime you have a team like this, it isn’t just a team; it becomes a brotherhood, it becomes a family, that dynamic of a relationship changes.”In the finals, Alab overcame a Mono squad that had 7-foot-5 Sam Deguara, sniper Mike Singletary and a couple of heady Filipino players in point guard Jason Brickman and Paul Zamar.“It took our best effort tonight to beat Mono,” said Alapag, whose team managed a split in the Bangkok leg of the Finals to put themselves in a position to win at home.Alapag recalled making two phone calls in December that altered the fate of Alab.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Jo Koy draws ire for cutting through Cebu City traffic with ‘wang-wang’ Scientists seek rare species survivors amid Australia flames In his first major coaching stint, national team legend Jimmy Alapag got his validation, import Renaldo Balkman completed his road to redemption and Justin Brownlee continued his winning legacy in the Philippines.More than underlining his status as a superstar with another season Most Valuable Player award and a Finals MVP trophy, Ray Parks also fulfilled his father’s wish of winning the title the late great Bobby Parks Jr. failed to pull off in 2012 as coach, while team owner Charlie Dy also got his reward for soldiering on when support was hard to come by.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 crownSolid contributionsRole players like Pamboy Raymundo, Lawrence Domingo and Pao Javelona also boosted their stock after making solid contributions to a championship run that included big victories over defending champion Hong Kong Eastern in the semifinals. 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 P16.5-M worth of aid provided for Taal Volcano eruption victims — NDRRMC LATEST STORIES View comments Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water recedinglast_img read more

Brendan Rodgers backs Jurgen Klopp to lead Liverpool to the title THIS season

first_imgBrendan Rodgers believes Liverpool are in the running for the Premier League title this season – thanks to their lack of European competition.Jurgen Klopp may have taken the Reds to two cup finals in his first season in charge, but his side’s defeat to Sevilla in the Europa League final and their eighth-place league finish meant the club will take no part in European football this term.But former boss Rodgers believes that will hand Liverpool a big advantage in the battle for the top flight crown, as it did when he saw his Reds side finish runners-up to Manchester City in 2014.With most of the world’s top managers now coaching in the Premier League, fans are likely to see one of the most exciting title races ever with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City, Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United and Antonio Conte’s Chelsea all hoping to be the team to strip Leicester of their championship.But, when asked about this year’s title race on Wednesday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast show, Rodgers said: “I think Liverpool have a great chance this year.“Liverpool and Chelsea don’t have European football and that’s a huge advantage for you, where you can prepare your team all week for just the one game every week.“Of course, you’ll have domestic cup games in between that, but I think Liverpool will have a good chance this year.“But it will be very competitive with the coaches that have come into the Premier League, that makes it exciting and I’m sure it’ll be a fantastic season.”last_img read more


first_imgDonegal Action for Cancer Care will be part of a 38 person delegation travelling this week to the European Parliament in Brussels to discuss their cancer concerns. It follows an invitation from MEP Martina Anderson Sinn Fein.DACC says it really welcome this major opportunity to discuss our serious concerns for Donegal cancer services. Spokesperson Betty Holmes said “We will be asking the European Parliament to recognise the geographical location of Donegal in relation to the 8 Centres of Excellence in Ireland, asking for their support in reversing the Centralisation of the referral appointments from Galway back to Letterkenny Hospital with major waiting lists at present and highlighting our very serious concerns for the 800 prostate cancer patients who have not been seen with their follow up appointments.”She added that the DACC feel that these major concerns are covered under the EU Communication from the Commission on effective, accessible & resilient health systems which states that “ Health systems must be accessible. This is one of the principles stated in the European Social Charter, which emphasises the importance of transparent criteria for access to medical treatment and the obligation for States to have adequate healthcare system which does not exclude parts of the population from receiving healthcare services. Patients should have reasonable access to health care services: they should not have to travel to far or wait to long to access the service they need.”They are also hoping that their DACC map will make a very clear statement regarding where Donegal is & how this is not recognised by the Irish Government or Health System.“We will do our very best for Donegal cancer patients & services as we have been doing for almost 11 years in a voluntary unpaid capacity.” DONEGAL ACTION FOR CANCER CARE TAKE THEIR MESSAGE TO EUROPE was last modified: February 29th, 2016 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:Brusselscancerdonegallast_img read more


first_imgBuncrana GAA Notes for Week Ending Sunday 16th March 2014Míle buíochas to our new Culture Officer, Deirdre, for all her initiatives for Seachtain na Gaeilge, including Ciorcal Cómhra, Photographic Competition, Focail an Lae on Facebook and all her hard work in organising our St Patrick’s Day float and the hugely enjoyable event afterwards in the Clubhouse. Thanks also to all those who helped her to make the Seachtain such a success and looking forward to loads more cultural events and initiatives in the future. Maith thú!Seniors, Minors, Under 21’s and Reserves Hurling training is on this week, Wednesday 7.30pm and Friday 7.30pm. All players are urged to make every effort to attend. Senior, Reserves, U-18, & U21 Football training is on Tuesdays & Thursdays at 7.30 in Scarvey. All players are asked to turn up as the new season is coming near. New players welcome too!Senior Ladies training every Wednesday at 7.30 in Buncrana Youth Club. New members always welcome.Under Age TrainingU6 Football 6.30-7.30pm Friday Crana College U8 Football 4-5pm Saturday Buncrana Youth ClubU8 Hurling 5-6pm Saturday Buncrana Youth ClubU10 Football 6-7pm Friday Buncrana Youth ClubU10/U12 Hurling 7-8pm Wednesday Crana CollegeU12 Football 7-8pm Monday & Friday Scarvey U14 Football 7-8.30pm Tuesday & Friday ScarveyU14 Hurling 7-8.30pm Tuesday & Thursday ScarveyU12/U14/U16 Girls Football 7-8pm Mondays ScarveyU14 Football Buncrana A vs St Eunan’s played on Saturday 15/3/14. A comfortable win on Saturday to put the A team back on course. Carndonagh vs Buncrana B played on Sunday 16/3/14. The Buncrana boys battled well again this week and only trailed a good Carn side by 2 points at half time. However, in the second half with the wind behind them, Carn pulled away and won easily. Still though, great improvement and determination was shown by all the Buncrana squad.U14 this coming week: Buncrana B are at home to Malin and Buncrana A are away to Termon.Parish League continues – League standing and fixtures on Club Og Facebook.Comhgairdeas do Crana College’s U14’s who, with a large Buncrana contingent, won 2-5 to 1-7 against St Clare’s Cavan and are now Ulster Champions……well done to all the team and management!Membership registration Please note if you or your child is a player/coach you must pay membership for insurance purposes. If you wish to be considered for ticket allocation for the All Ireland series of matches your membership must be paid by 25th March.NB:- Membership does not guarantee match tickets and only adult members can be considered for ticket allocation. Please see our Facebook page, Website and notices in The Clubhouse for membership fees, or contact if you have any further queries or contact Claire (0863340965) or Grainne (0864650200).Branded Gloves Elizabeth Anne has ordered Buncrana branded gloves. She wants to remind all managers to inform their player’s parents of this fact and that she is taking orders for them now. They should be available in 2 weeks, various sizes.Please contact Elizabeth Anne on 0860604075 to place orders or ask any questions.Adh mór to Club member Lauryn Mullholland who is in the Highland Radio Talent Competition Final on Sunday 23rd at the Grianan Theatre Letterkenny. Please remember to Vote…the number is 57252 and check her performance out on Youtube –….a former Scór na nÓg winner and a rising star.Condolences to Pat McMyler & family from all club members on the death of his father. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.Congratulations to Dermot Lavin & his wife Susie on the birth of their baby boy.Club Notes: Anyone who would like to receive a copy of the weekly club notes should email Jim at to be included on the mailing list. If you have any items which you think should be included in the club’s weekly notes, please email Jim at by 6pm on each Sunday for consideration. To keep up to date with all the latest goings-on, please join us on or @buncranagaa, or visit our website NEWS – BUNCRANA TO STAY ‘AFLOAT’ FOR PADDY’S DAY! was last modified: March 16th, 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:buncrana gaa club noteslast_img read more


first_imgThis week The Daily Telegraph newspaper printed an obituary to one Major Ian Smith. Smith had more than a colourful life which included a spell managing a fish farm in Co Donegal in the late 1970s. We invite comments at the end of the article if anyone happens to remember him.In April 1944 a bombing raid on coastal defences near Deauville was reported to have set off a series of flashes on the beach. Four reconnaissance operations, code-named Tarbrush, were therefore mounted at short notice to examine mines and obstacles in the region — though not on the D-Day beaches themselves for fear of attracting attention to them. In May, Smith was called to Combined Operations HQ for a top-level briefing. His orders were to find out whether explosive devices had been attached to the tops of stakes that the Germans had erected on the beaches. If they had, when detonated they might buckle the doors of the landing craft and the soldiers trapped inside would be sitting targets.On the moonless night of May 16, Smith, at the head of a small detachment of 10 (Inter-Allied) Commando, embarked from Dover in an MTB. Their engine-powered dory was dropped a mile offshore and they landed by dinghy east of Calais.Armed with a Sten gun and accompanied by a sapper, Smith crawled up the beach. The smell of cigarette smoke alerted them to the presence of a sentry. Then they heard German spoken. The guard was being changed.The sapper groped his way up one of the stakes and found an anti-tank Teller mine nailed to the top. Having decided not to remove it because the sentry would be sure to hear the noise, they returned to their dory, slid over the side and paddled until they were far enough from the beach to start the engine. They transmitted their call sign by “S” phone, an early “walkie-talkie”, but received no answer from the MTB. A ship approached them and, turning on its searchlight, scanned the sea. The Germans permitted no fishing at night, and Smith feared that it was one of their armed naval trawlers.They flattened themselves on the bottom of the dory. The vessel sailed past only a few yards away, and Smith said afterwards: “How it did not see us, I shall never know.” Some minutes later it turned about and, directed by its radar or shore radar, loosed off some heavy gunfire in their direction.Just as it was getting very close there came a sudden ringing of bells and shouted orders and, having apparently become stuck on a sand bank, it stopped. Smith and his party eventually found the MTB, which had moved out to sea to avoid the trawler. Smith celebrated the success of the operation in a series of Dover hostelries and became so inebriated that his batman had to take him home in a wheelbarrow. He was awarded a Bar to an earlier MC.Ian Christopher Downs Smith was born at Keynsham, near Bristol, on April 22 1920 and educated at Wycliffe College. In 1939, as a cadet at Sandhurst, he was one of a party taken to Aldershot to see an armoured division. Interspersed with a few tanks were soldiers holding up green flags. When asked what they were doing, they sprang to attention and replied: “I am a Mark II Tank, sir.”Smith played rugby for Sandhurst, Harlequins and the Army. Shortly after being commissioned into the Royal Army Service Corps, he volunteered to join No 2 Commando, the precursor of the Parachute Regiment, later termed the 1st Battalion Parachute Regiment, and trained at Ringway, where he and his comrades were reviewed by a disgruntled Churchill who was counting on getting many more volunteers.In 1940 he moved to Lochailort in Scotland, where he was trained in unarmed combat, pistol shooting and explosives. A spell at Achnacarry as an instructor in fieldcraft was followed by a posting to No 12 Commando. He then moved to Shetland to work with a Norwegian motor torpedo boat flotilla and was based at Sullom Voe. On reconnaissance missions to spy on the shipping in Norwegian territorial waters, they set off from Lerwick and hoisted the German naval ensign as they approached the coast. After creeping down a narrow channel in the cliff face, they docked, camouflaging the boat during the hours of daylight.Smith was then ordered to the Isle of Wight, where he became part of Fynn Force, based at Freshwater Bay. In September 1943 he was part of a small unit that was landed between Dieppe and Le Havre to report on the enemy’s coastal defences. Forbidden to use radio signals, they were provided with carrier pigeons to send back their information. But when they released one of the birds, it was promptly killed by a peregrine falcon; a second pigeon met the same fate.In December that year Smith and a small group embarked at Newhaven and crossed the Channel in an MTB on a reconnaissance mission. They landed on the north coast of France near Criel-Sur-Mer and had a difficult climb to the top of the cliff. Smith returned with valuable information on the German defences, but on the way back to the MTB they were almost cut off by a fast-moving enemy convoy, and Smith needed all his navigating skills to elude it. He was awarded his first MC, the citation stating that he had led eight previous operations of a similar type.Shortly before D-Day, Smith was recruited by the SOE and flew to Italy. In Bari, he was told that he was to be dropped into Yugoslavia to join Brigadier Fitzroy Maclean’s mission and serve as British Liaison Officer with the 5th Partisan Corps in Bosnia. As he parachuted down, he heard a voice call out: “In a hurry, are you sir?” It was Corporal Nash, his signaller and bodyguard, whom he had overtaken because he was much heavier. Sharing a nomadic life in the mountains with the partisans, he was constantly on the move dodging enemy patrols as he arranged for supply drops of food and arms, called in air support when an attack was launched against the Germans and helped evacuate those who were badly wounded or downed American airmen.On the way back to Bari in a Tank Landing Ship, Smith was enjoying a shot of Navy rum with the boatswain when the steel walls of the cabin bent inwards as if they had received a blow from a gigantic hammer. A Liberty ship, loaded with thousands of tons of high explosives had blown up, causing devastation in the Italian port and great loss of life.Smith was then attached to the Special Boat Squadron and commanded a small force in Crete. Living in a large cave and based in the east of the island, their task was to watch the remnants of the German and Italian occupiers and report back to their base.A spell on the Greek mainland, followed by a raid on the Dalmatian island of Cres, brought Smith’s active service to an end. When the war ended, he was promoted to major, and after commanding an RASC unit at Bicester he went up to Jesus College, Cambridge, to learn Russian.He was then posted to Minden in western Germany, where he interrogated deserters from the Soviet forces who were suspected of being agents posing as refugees. In 1947 he joined the family textile business at Stockport, Cheshire, eventually moving with the firm to Wales. He then managed a hotel for five years. In the 1970s he moved to Co Donegal, where he started a fish farm.In August 1974 Smith was driving a car near Randalstown, Northern Ireland, when he was forced to stop by three armed masked men. They tied him up, put a bomb in his car and then ordered him to drive into town and park by an electrical shop. They told him that they would follow him and shoot him if he did not do what they wanted and that the bomb was timed to go off in 20 minutes. At the shop there were several members of the RUC, who told him not to stop but to drive out of town. He found a field, left the car and ran for his life. The bomb exploded on time.Smith spent the last decade of his life in Northern Ireland. Watching rugby matches was his favourite recreation.Ian Smith married, in 1944, Margaret (Peggy) Cropper. She predeceased him, and he is survived by their son. A daughter predeceased him.Major Ian Smith, born April 22 1920, died May 3 2012DOES ANYONE REMEMBER MAJOR SMITH – THE DONEGAL FISH FARM OWNER? was last modified: May 22nd, 2012 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:donegalfish farmMajor Ian Smithlast_img read more


first_imgMayor Reilly awards Dr Tom McGinley his award surrounded by family and friends.Derry City Council has conferred the Freedom of the City on Gaoth Dobhair native Dr. Tom McGinley of the Foyle Hospice at a private ceremony in the Guildhall.Mayor Cllr Martin Reilly, who officiated at the ceremony, which was attended by Dr. McGinley’s family, said he felt very privileged to confer the special honour on Dr McGinley and formally acknowledge the significant role he has played to benefit the people of the city and wider North West region. Paying tribute to Dr McGinley, Mayor Reilly said: “Dr Tom McGinley has over the years made a huge contribution to the lives of many people in this city across the wider North West area.“The establishment of the Foyle Hospice and his contribution to patients with cancer and other illnesses and their families has been phenomenal and I think it is a fitting tribute to him that he has been honoured in this way.“I would like to extend my congratulations to him on behalf of the people of the city.”Following a Special Council meeting last September, members of Derry City Council unanimously agreed to confer the special honour on Dr. McGinley. The last time the honour was awarded was when Nobel Laureate John Hume was given the Freedom of the City in 2000. DONEGAL MAN DR TOM McGINLEY AWARDED FREEDOM OF DERRY was last modified: April 30th, 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:City of DerrydonegalDr Tom McGinleyGaoth Dobhairlast_img read more

Series revives memories of Black Sox scandal

first_img With no playoffs, the White Sox and Reds were headed for the Series. Chicago opened as 8-5 favorites to beat the Reds before losing the best- of-nine set in eight games. The fix was soon exposed; eight White Sox players were banned for life, sports had its first modern commissioner and virtually every league adopted a prohibition against associating with gamblers. The Buckminster earned its place in cheating history honestly. With no room service or concierge, it is the kind of place professional baseball teams don’t stay in now. Even then, it had a “subdued, conservative, old-lady atmosphere,” Asinof wrote. According to Asinof, the White Sox wound up there for the late-season series because they had trashed their usual Boston hotel during a night of carousing on a previous trip. “Chairs, lamps, tables, even beds had been dumped out of the windows into the courtyard below,” Asinof wrote. “The Hotel Buckminster was the result.” The lobby these days has a fresh coat of gold paint on the rotunda trim and plywood over the original floor tiles to protect them from the current renovation. Outside, the marble-and-brick facade is well- pointed. In room 615, Sullivan would have been able to sit and look out the window, over what is now the Massachusetts Turnpike, and watch his accessories play at Fenway Park. Rooms on the other side of the building look out over Kenmore Square and the Citgo sign that television viewers see when home runs sail over Fenway’s Green Monster. Today, the 94-room hotel’s only connection to White, Black or Red Sox is the Chicago-style pizza place, complete with baseball memorabilia, occupying part of the street level. “You never hear about that,” said Sean Gibbons, a construction worker who stopped in for lunch. Across the bar sat Billy Murphy, a passable copy of Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek but more of a hockey fan than a baseball fan. He didn’t know about the connection to the 1919 Series, either, but he knew everything he needed to know about this year’s. “We’re not playing today,” he said, “because we lost.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! No plaque marks the start of what might be the most notorious cheating scandal in the history of American sports. But the Buckminster is still around, hosting baseball fans instead of players and giving them a view of Fenway and the history it has yet to make. “During the baseball season, a lot of people ask where the Black Sox scandal happened,” Ed Sheppherd, the hotel’s front desk manager, said Friday. “But the only people that would know what room they were in have long since passed away.” BOSTON — Tucked into Kenmore Square, between Fenway Park and the Citgo sign that provides the backdrop for so many baseball highlights, is another, lesser-known landmark with a place in history of its own. It was here, at the Hotel Buckminster, that Chicago White Sox first baseman Chick Gandil met with a gambler bidding to fix the 1919 World Series and promised him: “I think we can put it in the bag.” center_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The Buckminster staff can expect more inquiries this week, when the White Sox play the Houston Astros and try to win Chicago’s first World Series since the 1919 team gave one away. In “Eight Men Out,” the 1963 book about the fixing scandal that was made into a 1988 movie, author Eliot Asinof recounts the meeting at the Buckminster between Gandil and bookie Joe “Sport” Sullivan. The gambler arrived in a taxi, called Gandil’s room from the house phone and was asked to come up. Once inside, Gandil delivered the news and the price: $80,000. Little else is known about the meeting or the exact room where it took place. The date of the meeting is also in dispute: Asinof puts it “exactly three weeks before the World Series was to begin,” but the White Sox were in Washington that day, according to; more likely, it was during their three- game Boston trip of Sept. 19-20. The White Sox arrived in Boston with a 6 1/2-game lead over the Cleveland Indians and just eight to play in the 140-game season. They beat the Red Sox 3-2 on Sept. 19 to clinch a tie for the AL pennant; Cincinnati, with a 10 1/2-game lead over the New York Giants, had already clinched the NL title. last_img read more

Groves lines up December title defence

first_imgGeorge Groves is set to fight at the ExCeL London on Saturday 15 December.Hammersmith’s unbeaten super-middleweight, who recently relinquished the British title, is expected to defend his Commonwealth crown. His opponent is yet to be confirmed.The bill will be headlined by Scotland’s world lightweight champion Ricky Burns.It will be Groves’ first outing since he prevailed in a bruising encounter with Francisco Sierra in California in July.A cut sustained in that fight meant a planned defence of his belts this month was scrapped.Earlier this year the 24-year-old was forced to withdraw from a world title shot because of injury.“This year has been tough, but I’m over the worst of it and now I’m focused on a big performance at the Excel,” Groves declared.“Although I’ve only had one fight this year, it was a good win in America that made the fans and media sit up and take notice of me.“I’m sure 2013 will be a much better one for me, but I need to make sure I end the year with my record intact.”See also:Bloodied Groves prevails in San Jose scrapGroves’ Wembley fight is off because of cutGroves to face former champion JohnsonFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Hunter in historic Tour win

first_img20 July 2007Robert Hunter became the first South African to win a stage of the world’s greatest cycling race when he sprinted to victory on the eleventh stage of the Tour de France in Montpellier on Thursday.It was a second stage win in three days for Team Barloworld, the first South African-sponsored team to contest the Tour de France, following Tuesday’s victory by Juan Mauricio Soler.Hunter was strongly supported by his team on a day in which strong side winds helped split the field as Team Astana attacked strongly when it became clear that French champion Christophe Moreau was struggling. Those tactics worked as Moreau fell from sixth to twelfth in the overall standings, but Hunter’s team gave him all the support he needed in difficult conditions.The finishAs the leaders headed towards the finish line, Hunter was well positioned near the front of the pack, along with a number of other sprinters.With 900 metres to go, however, points leader Tom Boonen, New Zealander Julian Dean, and Fred Rodriguez of Predictor-Lotto were all halted as they failed to negotiate a sweeping right hand corner, with Boonen forced to stop and Dean and Rodriguez crashing.The South African star avoided the pile-up and remained in a good position. Then, with about 350 metres to go, he swung out wide to the left and charged for home. It seemed he had gone too early, but Hunter opened a decent gap on the chasing pack.Back they came at him, but the Barloworld sprinter had done enough, crossing the line a wheel ahead of Fabian Cancellara to secure the biggest win of his career. Letting out a yell of delight, Hunter clenched his fists, pumping the air as he celebrated the win.Punching above their weightIn the post-race interview, Hunter said it was difficult to describe his feelings because he had no words, but his wide smile spoke volumes.He praised his teammates for the part they played in his victory, noting that although Team Barloworld is a small team when compared to some of the big Pro Tour outfits, they have been punching above their weight.Indeed, following his win, Hunter is up to second in the sprinters’ standings – the competition for the green jersey – while Juan Mauricio Soler is second in the king of the mountains standings, the competition for the polka dot jersey. There are plenty of big teams that are not in the running at all and who have not won a stage.‘Makes all the years worth it’Writing on his website, Hunter said: “This makes all the years worth it. Thanks for everything, but more than anything thanks for being my mate.“This is a victory I have been looking for for over six years and, I guess it’s true, the more you wait for something the more you appreciate it. I gotta say I hope it shows everybody back in SA that anything can be achieved if you try hard enough and give it your all.“More than anything, I hope this causes a wave of interest in the sport ’cause I know how much talent there is back home and I’m sure there plenty of young guys that can achieve the same and more.”‘A big jump’In a story posted on Team Barloworld’s website, Hunter said: “Ten years ago I moved to Europe from SA. It was a big jump at the time, but today many things have changed and cycling, and sport in general, moved many steps ahead in my country.“I’m really proud to represent a team supported by an important South African company. Now we deserve more respect, we are a great professional team, and I’m sure we’ll become one of the best teams all over the world in the next few years.”For the team’s directeur sportif, Valerio Tebaldi, who also won a stage of the Tour in Montpellier 18 years previously, it was an opportunity to relive a great day.“For me,” Tebaldi told the Team Barloworld website, “it was like watching a movie again, the same setting, the same feeling as 18 years ago. On Tuesday, when Soler won, I was about to cry, today I have a stomach-ache for too much happiness.”Reward for the sponsorsBarloworld became the sponsor of the team five years ago and, with the team having been invited to the Tour de France this year, the company is being well rewarded. Its name has become well known, thanks to the superb performances of their multinational collection of cyclists.The highly respected Tour de France commentary team of Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwin summed up the impact Barloworld has made on the Tour de France by calling the team one of the stories of this year’s event.Summing up the outfit’s extraordinary showing in the Tour de France, Tebaldi commented: “I’m tasting a lot of extraordinary emotions, day after day. We have just won twice. Both Mauricio and Rob expressed two amazing performances in this Tour de France.“Here we are on the spots, two stages already in our pocket, several good placements, ranked second in points and climbers’ classifications.“Who could have imagined so much?” Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

It’s time for “Football Tuesday”!

first_imgTens of thousands of us took to the streets on Wednesday 9 June to show our  unwavering support for BAFANA BAFANA. We waved our flags, we celebrated our team and we pledged our support.  Last Friday, we took on Mexico and we drew. Unfortunately Uruguay beat us this week.  Nevertheless, as South Africans we have a proud history of defying the odds and uniting as a nation to ensure our heroes do not stand alone.We celebrated when South Africa won the bid to host the 2010 Soccer World Cup some six years ago. We donned our BAFANA BAFANA jerseys every Friday for months. We became masters of the vuvuzela, kuduzela and makarapas.  It is vital for us to continue with the momentum and the positivity. It is up to us to ensure that we continue our support for our national team. Sport is about winning and losing—but more  importantly it’s about continuing to unite our nation and keeping the spirit alive.Let’s  continue to bottle the positive energy. The World Cup is not solely about BAFANA BAFANA, but also about our country. Whether we make it to round two or not, we must ensure that we support our boys.Let’s turn “FOOTBALL FRIDAY” into “FOOTBALL TUESDAY” next week—Tuesday, 22 June. Each and every South African should wear their yellow shirts, as we take on France. This will again show the world that we are not only united, but we are a world-class host, committed to leaving a legacy. The one memory BAFANA BAFANA will treasure forever is the support the country has shown.PRIMEDIA, SOUTHERN SUN and the INTERNATIONAL MARKETING  COUNCIL (BRAND SA) calls on South Africans to paint each and every corner of the country yellow on Tuesday. Please spread the message. Whatever the outcome we will always be proudly BAFANA BAFANA!In the words of Primedia CEO, Kuben Pillay: “I will be yellow for the rest of my life…”Issued by:Yusuf AbramjeeHead of News & Current Affairs: Primedia BroadcastingHead of Corporate Affairs & Communication: PrimediaCell: 082 441 4203last_img read more