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A TRIBUTE TO THE HEART OF THE TEAM…

first_imgThe Eagles Mens 20’s have suffered enormously as a team in recent weeks. Their son, their friend, their brother, their team mate, Kieran Luland was killed in a tragic car accident in late January.Team mate Anthony Cowan was also involved in the accident, not long after he had attended the Australian Under 18’s camp and the accident sent shock waves around the Australian Touch community. The Eagles players, their team management, friends and family banded together, supporting their young men, as well as their mentor and assistant coach, Ricky Luland, Kieran’s father.On Monday night they honoured their lost team mate in the best way they could, with the 2006 National Touch League Mens 20’s title.Wearing leg bands with the words ‘Kieran Luland, 8, Kakadu’, the crowd who had stayed for the final were witness to a team intensely focused and committed to each other, a team with a desire to honour their friend and a team that performed in such a way it brought tears to the eyes of all.In honour of ‘Kakadu’ (Kieran’s nickname) and his number 8 jersey, the Eagles amazed the crowd with their silky smooth skills and incredible pace. With great support from family members and local viewers, the side capped their most difficult time together with an 8-5 title win.For those who stayed to watch the presentations and the celebrations, they were like no other gone before them.Anthony Cowan was named as Player of the Final, scoring two touchdowns and setting up several others, a remarkable feat considering the time he spent in hospital recovering from injuries sustained in the accident.He also spoke as team captain, explaining to all how Kieran was the heart of their team, how they had played for him, that they knew he was there watching. The depth of passion and respect these young men held for Kieran was made incredibly obvious. It was fantastic to see the family and friends supporting their side, the young children following them around like heroes, the cameras and videos well in hand.For the team, the meaning in each handshake and hug, the relief, the passion, the emotion as all let their guards down and hugged and cried together was an honour to witness.For Ricky Luland, the moment was understandably emotional, as he hugged and spoke privately with all of the players. It was the added emotion of caring deeply for the group of boys that have been playing and growing together for several years, seeing them develop as a team that can now call themselves national champions.For coach David Scholes, himself a quiet achiever, the win was a result of the hard work of his team, the way they had pulled together and stuck by each other through the most difficult of times.For the spectators, it was a privilege to see the hearts of these players, these coaches, these family and friends and it will never be forgotten. It was an honour to the team and most importantly, it was an honour to Kieran.last_img read more

a month agoEvra: Man Utd must rediscover arrogance

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Evra: Man Utd must rediscover arroganceby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United hero Patrice Evra has called for them to get their “arrogance” back. United face West Ham – two of the Frenchman’s former clubs – this weekend.Evra told United’s official website: “West Ham is a good club and I think Manuel Pellegrini is doing a great job.”They will go for it. I remember I was still playing for West Ham and they played against United. “During the week, actually all the players were so focused in training and not one of them was thinking they were going to lose against United.”They were like we are going to beat them and win against United. I was a West Ham player but a United fan and I was a little bit hurt to say: “Wow, my club is getting really down”, if they don’t think even one per cent they are going to lose that game. “The problem is they won that game 3-1, West Ham, so I was happy but really upset. Wow, we need to fix my club and it’s why we are Manchester United.”We played against Leicester and many people said it was going to be a tough game because they’re in form but it’s what I’m talking about. “Where is the respect for Manchester United? I want people to fear us again and people have to go out and play better and win the games.” last_img read more

GIF: Arkansas Blows Three-Point Lead With Awful Foul Late Against Alabama

first_imgAn Arkansas Razorbacks cheerleader.JACKSONVILLE, FL – MARCH 19: A cheerleader for the Arkansas Razorbacks watches on against the Wofford Terriers during the second round of the 2015 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena on March 19, 2015 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)Arkansas and Alabama are currently in overtime, but ask any Razorback fan, it should have never gotten this far. With under five seconds left, and a three point lead, Arkansas committed the cardinal sin of fouling a player on a layup, and sending him to the line for a game-tying free throw. Arkansas’ Bobby Portis fouled Alabama forward Michael Kessens, who made the bucket, and sunk the free throw to send the game to overtime. The game is tied at 86 with under two minutes remaining.last_img read more

Miami Women’s Basketball Coach Blasts Texas A&M

first_imgKatie Meier poses in front of a Miami basketball poster.Twitter/@CoachKatieMeierMiami women’s basketball coach Katie Meier was not happy with the sexist slides from the Texas A&M football women’s clinic, which have gotten the Aggies criticized nationally and led to the suspension of two staff members.Last night, Meier blasted A&M on Twitter for the slides. She also expressed disapproval for only punishing offensive line coach Jim Turner and special teams coordinator Jeff Banks with two-week suspensions.Miami women’s basketball coach Katie Meier fires back at the Aggies’ presentation.This cannot be REAL life in 2016 college athletics. We are EDUCATORS. We WORK in higher education. W set standards https://t.co/WMvuRgXn8e— Katie Meier (@CoachKatieMeier) July 30, 2016 The actual slides are degrading and offensive. I have seen them. 2 week suspension is a joke. Change the culture https://t.co/586e9HTevu— Katie Meier (@CoachKatieMeier) July 30, 2016Meier is a well-respected coach, having compiled a 283-188 record (.591 winning percentage) at Charlotte and Miami. She has taken the Hurricanes to five NCAA Tournaments in the last six years.One of the suspended A&M coaches, Jim Turner, has been in hot water before. Turner was the offensive line coach of the Miami Dolphins in 2012-13 and was a major figure in the team’s bullying scandal.A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin released a statement apologizing for the action’s of his staffers.“There is absolutely no place in our program or in our University community for inappropriate conduct or degrading comments towards women, or anyone, regardless of intent.[…]“On behalf of Aggie football, I want to apologize for the comments at Chalk Talk and also for my failure to review their individual presentations. I want to thank the almost 700 women who came out this week who not only participated in the program but who supported a worthy cause in the Twin City Mission.”For a coach rumored to be on the hot seat, this is probably the last thing Sumlin needed.last_img read more

BJP govt released Masood Azhar Doval escorted him says Rahul

first_imgNew Delhi: Continuing his attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi over Pulwama suicide bombing, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday raked up the issue of release of Pakistan-based terrorist Masood Azhar in 1999.Sounding the bugle for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls from Modi’s home state, he fired a fresh salvo at the NDA regime on a slew of issues, including the Rafale deal, demonetisation and the implementation of the GST. Addressing a rally at Adalaj village of Gandhinagar district in the presence of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, his sister and general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and other top party leaders, he reiterated that there was massive corruption in the Rafale deal. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! “He (Modi) talks about patriotism. Masood Azhar conducted bomb attack in Pulwama. I would like to ask Narendra Modiji, who released Masood Azhar and sent him to Pakistan? (It was) the BJP government, the Vajpayee government put Masood Azhar on a special plane, gave him money and sent him to Pakistan,” Rahul Gandhi said. “And Narendra Modiji, your National Security Adviser, (Ajit) Dovalji (who was then with the IB), escorted Masood Azhar to Kandahar (in Afghanistan),” he said. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killedAzhar and two other terrorists were set free by the Vajpayee government in exchange of hostages of the IC-814 Indian Airlines flight hijacked to Kandahar in December 1999. Azhar later went on to set up the Jaish-e-Mohammed, a Pakistan-based terror outfit that claimed responsibility for the February 14 suicide attack on a CRPF convoy in Pulwama. “Explain to the country, why did you send the person who killed those 40-45 martyrs, on a special plane? Tell the country why your government sent him to Pakistan. Who had arrested Masood Azhar? Congress party had arrested Masood Azhar, he was kept in jail,” he said. While mocking the industrialist, the Congress chief said, “Anil Ambani has never made a plane in his life. If I give him a piece of paper he would not be able to make a plane out of that also.”last_img read more

Kolkata to experience evening showers rainy Holi expected

first_imgKolkata: The Regional Meteorological Centre at Alipore predicted light to moderate rainfall in various South Bengal districts including the city particularly during evening hours in the next 48 hours.The MeT department on Saturday said that there will be scattered rainfall in the city and also in some parts of South Bengal in the next two days due to the impact of a collision between Western disturbances and a wind that is blowing towards the Western direction. Western disturbances are low-pressure waves that travel from West to the East across the plains. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersAccording to a senior MeT department official, there may be thundershowers coupled with strong breeze in some districts including West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia. “An impact of the Western disturbances and a wind that moves towards the East direction may trigger light to moderate rainfall in the city. “Various South Bengal districts may receive light to moderate rainfall while some others will witness lightning and thunderstorms. The city may witness rains during the evening hours bringing the mercury down by a few notches,” a MeT official said. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaOne or two moderate spells over the city are possible during the coming two to three days until March 18. Thereafter, there is likely to be a break in rains. However, once again, on March 20 and 21, some on and off showers may make an appearance over the city of Kolkata. It may be mentioned here that people in the city and other South Bengal districts have started experiencing comparatively hot weather conditions in the past few days as the mercury has begun to soar up.last_img read more

PMO cleard decks for Hansrajs nomination

first_imgNew Delhi: The sudden decision of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to field Punjabi folk singer Hansraj Hans from North West Delhi parliamentary constituency added to the woes of government officials as they were assigned to ‘manage’ the resignation of Hans from the post of vice chairman of National Commission for Safai Karamcharis office on ‘most urgent’ basis.As per the highly-placed sources, the officials of the Prime Minister’s Office were in constant touch with the concerned officials of the Ministry of Social Justice, who were assigned the responsibility to expedite the resignation procedure of Hans. The Punjabi singer was holding the post at the Commission since July 2018. As per the sources, the officials were directed by the PMO to complete the resignation process as fast as they can on Monday, a day prior to the announcement of Hans as BJP’s nominee for North West Delhi Lok Sabha seat in place of sitting MP Udit Raj. “The resignation process of Hans was completed by 7 pm and notification was also issued in this regard. The PMO made a final call in the late midnight to ‘confirm’ the completion of resignation process,” the sources said. However, the ministry has not yet removed Hans from his post on the website of the commission. Notably, the BJP announced candidature of Hans hours before the deadline for filing of nomination on Tuesday.last_img read more

March Madness Crib Notes for Thursdays Sweet 16 Games

Check out FiveThirtyEight’s March Madness predictions. No. 3 Notre Dame (53 percent win probability) vs. No. 7 Wichita StateLocation: ClevelandWhen to watch: At 7:15 p.m. EDT on CBSPower ratings: Wichita State 88.1, Notre Dame 87.2Upset probability: 47 percentPlayer to watch: Fred VanVleet, Wichita StateAfter prevailing in what was arguably the round of 32’s most exciting game, Notre Dame’s next hurdle will be a terrific all-around Wichita State team that is coming off one of the biggest victories in program history. These two teams are very evenly matched; the Fighting Irish are better offensively (according to KenPom.com’s ratings), but the Shockers have the better defense. There are a few peculiarities that could decide the matchup — Wichita State’s defense is good at gathering rebounds and stopping 2-point field goals, which should mitigate two of the Irish’s offensive strengths. Notre Dame, meanwhile, has the superior long-distance shooters. But this is such a tossup that it might come down to something as obscure as travel distance. Notre Dame is favored to win in part because South Bend is almost four times closer to Cleveland than Wichita is. Wichita State has the better power rating in the FiveThirtyEight model, but the travel is what makes the prediction tilt Notre Dame’s way. File it under “every little edge counts,” I suppose. After a three-day break, the Madness continues Thursday with the commencement of the Sweet 16. And according to the FiveThirtyEight power ratings of the teams involved, Thursday’s games are pretty clearly better than Friday’s slate of matchups. Headlining the action, as always: undefeated Kentucky, who’ll take the court against West Virginia in their sternest test yet (granted, the Wildcats still have an 87 percent chance of advancing). But the most intriguing game of the night might just be North Carolina versus Wisconsin in a battle of contrasting styles.Read on for more about Thursday’s NCAA tournament action …No. 1 Kentucky (87 percent win probability) vs. No. 5 West VirginiaLocation: ClevelandWhen to watch: At 9:45 p.m. EDT on CBSPower ratings: Kentucky 97.9, West Virginia 85.5Upset probability: 13 percentPlayer to watch: Karl-Anthony Towns, KentuckyWest Virginia is a deep, balanced squad with a great swarming defense, but its run likely ends Thursday night against the nation’s most talented team. While the Mountaineers do employ some high-variance strategies that could help their upset chances — particularly a pressing defense that specializes in forcing turnovers — there are plenty of weaknesses for Kentucky to exploit if it can adequately protect the ball. Kentucky had the third-best shooting efficiency differential in the country during the season, while West Virginia had the nation’s 30th-worst; the Mountaineers also allowed the highest free throw rate in the country on defense. (For its part, Kentucky’s offense ranked 30th-best in forcing fouls and 74th in free throw accuracy.) So if this game is decided by conventional means, West Virginia probably won’t win; the Mountaineers will need takeaways and a lot of good fortune to hand Kentucky its first loss of the season. No. 2 Arizona (87 percent win probability) vs. No. 6 XavierLocation: Los AngelesWhen to watch: At 10:17 p.m. EDT on TBSPower ratings: Arizona 94.8, Xavier 85.5Upset probability: 13 percentPlayer to watch: T.J. McConnell, ArizonaBy navigating past a tough Ohio State team with relative ease in the round of 32, Arizona earned the right to face Xavier in one of the Sweet 16’s easier matchups. The Musketeers aren’t a bad team, but they are among the weaker remaining squads in the field. And that’s not good when facing the second-highest-rated team in the FiveThirtyEight power ratings. There are stylistic reasons to think Xavier is overmatched here. The key to the Musketeers’ success has been their offense, particularly on 2-pointers (big men Matt Stainbrook and Jalen Reynolds both shot in excess of 62 percent on twos this season), but the Wildcats excel at short-circuiting opponents’ 2-point efficiency. And in the absence of its bread-and-butter, Xavier might have trouble knocking down enough threes or forcing enough turnovers to make life difficult for Arizona. The Musketeers shouldn’t feel too bad, though: Despite being the No. 2 seed, Arizona is a 58 percent favorite to emerge as the West’s representative in the Final Four. No. 1 Wisconsin (73 percent win probability) vs. No. 4 North CarolinaLocation: Los AngelesWhen to watch: At 7:47 p.m. EDT on TBSPower ratings: Wisconsin 93.6, North Carolina 88.0Upset probability: 27 percentPlayer to watch: Frank Kaminsky, WisconsinWorlds are colliding in Thursday’s most interesting pairing. The Badgers, known for slowing the pace of the game down to a veritable crawl, will meet the Tar Heels, one of the nation’s fastest-paced teams. During the season, Wisconsin’s average possession lasted nearly six seconds longer than North Carolina’s, while the proportion of UNC’s plays on which they had a transition opportunity was more than double that of Wisconsin. (The Badgers were at the bottom of Division I with a 7.5 percent rate of transition chances per play, according to Synergy.) The tempo of this game will be worth watching. Beyond that, the possibility of an upset might come down to whether UNC can get the 2-point shots upon which they thrive against a tough interior Wisconsin defense and — relatedly — whether the Heels can do any damage on the offensive glass versus the Badgers’ great defensive rebounders. read more

Buckeyes rely on goalie play to snap skid

The Ohio State men’s soccer team has had success thanks to great play from its goalkeepers, especially from redshirt freshman Matt Lampson.“He has been playing very well lately,” coach John Bluem said. “I think Matt has taken the position now, it’s going to be his and he is going to try and hold onto it.”The freshman stepped up early in the season and helped guide OSU to its best start in school history.A week ago, the Big Ten named Lampson the conference’s defensive player of the week because of his stellar play against Michigan State.On the season Lampson has three shutouts and .93 goals against average.But Lampson is not the only goalkeeper OSU has on its roster, and Bluem is confident in every one of the young keepers. The Buckeyes have three solid goalies who could potentially take the starting job.Other then Lampson, the Buckeyes have redshirt sophomore Ryan Dalton, who has been seeing more and more play time because of his solid play.OSU also has a true freshman in Alex Wimmer, who is ready to go when his number is called. Had Wimmer not been injured at the beginning of the season, he would have challenged for the starting spot.Coming into the season, Bluem worried his team might be inexperienced at goalie.“No worries anymore,” Bluem said. “Wimmer is ready to go if we need him, Dalton has played really well in the times we used him and Lampson is in really good form right now. I am very pleased at the way they have been playing.”The Buckeyes, however, are in the middle of a tough stretch of games.The team has lost its last two games, 3-0 to Akron and 1-0 to Northwestern. After the Northwestern loss, Bluem questioned the team’s level of effort.“It’s a tough stretch. Hopefully we can address some things and come out with a more intense effort,” Bluem said.With a full schedule ahead, the team wants get back on the field quickly and perform better. OSU is hoping that is the case when they face Cleveland State on Friday.Cleveland State (3-4-3) comes into the game struggling on offense, scoring only one goal in its last three games.But with 11 seniors and the entire defense returning, the Buckeyes will have to be ready.Friday’s match will be played at 5 p.m. at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. read more

Real Madrid should give Barcelona a guard of honour – Alba

first_imgBarcelona’s Jordi Alba is convinced that Real Madrid should give them a guard of honour for having recently been crown La Liga championsThe Catalan giants sealed their 25th league title with a 4-2 win against the now-relegated Deportivo La Coruna last Sunday with Lionel Messi netting a hat-trick.The title marks their seventh one of the past 10 seasons and they recently defeated Sevilla 5-0 in the Copa del Rey final.But for Sunday’s El Clasico against bitter rivals Real, Zinedine Zidane announced that they will not be performing any kind of guard of honour due to Barcelona’s refusal to the same gesture when they won the Club World Cup in December.“It’s not a decision we take, everyone has respect for those who want to,” said Alba, according to AS.Sergio Ramos, Real MadridZidane reveals Sergio Ramos injury concern for Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane has put Sergio Ramos’ availability for Real Madrid’s trip to Sevilla next weekend in doubt after withdrawing him against Levante.“The Club World Cup was a competition we didn’t play in. At the [Santiago] Bernabeu, in the league, we have previously performed a guard of honour. If they don’t want to give us a guard of honour it will be because it comes from upstairs.”The defender also defended his head coach Ernesto Valverde for Barcelona’s shocking exit from the Champions League to AS Roma.“It’s an embarrassment, the players have to show our faces, we all make mistakes,” admitted the 29-year-old.“Valverde deserves it more than anyone, he’s the sixth coach to have won a double. He’s managed the dressing room perfectly.”He added: “[The double] has only been done eight times in Barcelona’s history and we have to be very happy. Everyone would have taken it, although we know that in the Champions League we were knocked out badly. The double has been won eight times and the club was founded ages ago.”last_img read more