first_imgELLSWORTH — Ellsworth High School boys’ basketball coach Peter Austin, left, was recognized at Monday night’s City Council meeting for recently being named the Big East Coach of the Year. Council Chairman Bob Crosthwaite presented Austin with a certificate and thanked him for his leadership during the past season. The Eagles won the Northern Maine Class B regional title and made it to the state title game, where they fell to Lake Region. Crosthwaite said the team’s championship run created a wonderful spirit of camaraderie in the Ellsworth community.This is placeholder textThis is placeholder textlast_img read more

first_imgThe 17-time Grand Slam champion will play Stefanos Tsitsipas in the last four after the 20-year-old Greek beat Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut.“It is emotional to be back in the semi-finals,” said Nadal, who retired injured in his quarter-final against Marin Cilic last year.“I had some troubles in this event so, after a while of not playing, to be back in the semi-final means a lot to me. I feel very lucky to be where I am after all the troubles I’ve been through.”Nadal, who did have to stave off two break points at 2-1 in the second set, has not dropped a set as he aims to become the first man to win each of the four Grand Slams twice in the Open era.Despite reaching at least the quarter-finals in 11 of his past 12 appearances, including four finals, he has only converted one of these runs into victory – his sole triumph at Melbourne Park in 2009.And, despite not playing competitively since September’s US Open because of multiple injuries, he has cruised through his opening five matches.Tiafoe, who celebrated his 21st birthday by reaching his maiden Grand Slam quarter-final on Sunday, could not cope with Nadal’s quality and intensity.He had spent almost 12 hours on court coming into the match – more than three hours longer than Nadal – including his four-set wins over Wimbledon finalist Kevin Anderson and former world number three Grigor Dimitrov.Nadal broke again for a 5-2 lead in the third, going on to serve out victory in one hour and 47 minutes.The Spaniard used his trademark forehand to great effect, particularly down the line, hitting 13 winners on that side.“The serve and winner with the first forehand is something very important for me, very important today, but also very important if I want to keep playing for a few years,” he said.“It has given me a lot of free points and that is so important at this stage of my career.”Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Second seed Rafael Nadal yesterday eased past unseeded American Frances Tiafoe to reach the Australian Open semi-finals and continue his bid to win all four Grand Slams for a second time.The 32-year-old Spaniard cracked 29 winners in a 6-3 6-4 6-2 victory.Nadal broke 21-year-old Tiafoe in each of his first service games of the set.last_img read more

first_imgFacebook35Tweet0Pin0Olympia, WA: On Saturday, July 28, 2012, the Junior League of Olympia will be hosting the 2nd annual Touch-a-Truck fundraiser at South Sound Center in Lacey, Washington. The fundraiser offers children of all ages a hands-on opportunity to climb on and explore a huey helicopter, firetruck, SWAT vehicle, race car, excavator, limo and many more in addition to meeting the people who build, protect, and serve Thurston County.The fundraiser starts at 10 am and ends at 4 pm. and includes live entertainment for the whole family with a magician, K-9 and Jaws of Life demonstrations, local bands, and fair atmosphere with food, games, face painting and more. Admission is $5 per person; children 2 and under are admitted for free. Proceeds benefit the Junior League of Olympia’s efforts to prevent child abuse and neglect in our community. For more information, please visit JLOlympia.org.last_img read more

first_imgImage Courtesy: Reuters/Goal/ZimbioAdvertisement i40uNBA Finals | Brooklyn Vscxn1Wingsuit rodeo📽Sindre E229( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) 2qreWould you ever consider trying this?😱uCan your students do this? 🌚q06Roller skating! Powered by Firework Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest footballers ever to grace the game, turns 35 today. From a promising youth rising up the ranks in Sporting CP to marking his territory in the most elite European clubs like Manchester United, Real Madrid and now Juventus FC- the Portuguese veteran is still going strong at this age when most decide to hang up their boots. On this felicitous day, lets take a look back at Cristiano Ronaldo’s decorated career.Advertisement Image Courtesy: Reuters/Goal/ZimbioRonaldo’s arrival at Manchester United:Under the guidance of the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson, Ronaldo arrived at Old Trafford from Lisbon in 2003. On 16th August 2003, the young winger made his English Premier League debut against Bolton Wanderers, coming off as a substitute for Nicky Butt. Soon becoming a favourite amongst the Red Devils supporters, he went onto win three EPL titles and one UEFA Champions League with them, before joining Spanish Giants Real Madrid in 2009.A young Cristiano Ronaldo making his Manchester United debut on 16/08/2003 (Image Courtesy: Action Images)Winning his fifth UEFA Champions League title with Real Madrid:For a world record transfer fee of £80 million, Ronaldo swapped sides with Los Blancos in 2009. The La Liga is when the renowned rivalry against Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi started. Ronaldo lifted two La Liga trophies, and won the UEFA CL title for an astounding four times, becoming the first footballer to win five Champions League trophies in the 2017-18 season.Advertisement Defeating Liverpool in the 2017-18 UCL final, Ronaldo became the first footballer to win the title five times. (Image Courtesy: UEFA)Portugal’s first UEFA European Championship in 2016:Ronaldo’s achievements weren’t only limited to club football. The national team skipper lifted the team to the final of the UEFA Euro 2016 tournament, defeating France 1-0 to win Portugal’s maiden Euro Cup trophy. Ronaldo is also the highest goalscorer for the national team, with 99 goals from 164 appearances across all international competitions.Ronaldo and the Portugal national football team with the 2016 Euro Cup trophy. (Image Courtesy: Sky Sports)Winning the Ballon d’Or award for a record five times:Ronaldo showed his class with Real Madrid, with back to back Ballon d’Or wins in 2013 and 2014. In 2017, Ronaldo became the second player after Messi to win the prestigious Ballon d”Or award for the fifth time in 2017, equalling the Argentine superstar for having the highest tally of the award in the history of football.Advertisement Ronaldo holding his fifth Ballon d’Or in 2017. (Image Courtesy: AP)Becoming Real Madrid’s top goalscorer:Ronaldo became the ultimate goal machine for the Galacticos during his 9 seasons at Santiago Bernabéu. The only footballer in the world with more number of goals than the number of appearances, Ronaldo has scored a monumental 426 goals in 421 appearances. He became the La Liga giants’ top scorer in 2015, after surpassing the club legend Raul’s record 323 strikes for the club, and was honoured by Real Madrid for the historical achievement.Cristiano Ronaldo with the award for becoming Real Madrid’s all time top goalscorer in 2015. (Image Courtesy: Getty)The Portuguese champion’s decorated career is filled with iconic moments such as these. Even at an age of 35, Ronaldo has been in tremendous form with Juventus. Since his arrival in Italy in 2018, the striker is setting a new benchmark for the veterans who decide to retire by this age. With still many more yards to run, iconic moments like these will keep coming for Cristiano Ronaldo.On his 35th birthday, Ronaldo posted a video on his official Instagram, saying that he has a ‘gift’ for his fans. The caption reads: “For my 35th birthday, i will have a very special gift…for you. Follow @cr7cristianoronaldo and stay tuned!” Check it out here- Advertisementlast_img read more

first_imgJoey Barton has taken to Twitter to pour scorn on reports of a possible players’ union for black footballers.The controversial midfielder, on loan at Marseille from QPR, is among many to have criticised the idea.“I feel if you create two separate groups, you force people to choose sides. There should be no sides. Were in it together. Thats the message,” he tweeted.“What about mixed raced kids. They have to decide if they want to be in a black players union or white. Nah, no good that…”He later added: “F***. I’m gonna write strongly on this BFA planned breakaway. My gut tells me I have to whilst the panderers’ pander again…“The PFA is a great ‘UNION’ its done great things for players of all races and creeds over the decades. Players should f***** speak up…“This could prove a pivotal point for the game and society beyond it. Footballers must be socially aware and not afraid to ask the ‘race’ Q?“Hopefully, some of the more vocal and less notorious amongst us, raise their heads from below the PR department desk. #manupffs”Meanwhile, Brentford midfielder Jonathan Douglas made his disappointment clear after fans jeered team-mate Paul Hayes in Tuesday’s win over Coventry.Hayes is yet to score since his August move from Charlton and had another disappointing game before being substituted against the Sky Blues.And Douglas tweeted: “Good result tonight.. Very disappointing to hear our own fan sarcastically booing and cheering one of our players off.”And boxer Audley Harrison says he has not made a decision on his future following his recent first-round defeat against David Price.Harlesden’s former Olympic champion, 40, tweeted: “Not making a decision for now, but happy to think out aloud At the end of your life journey, will you care what others think-NO.“So why let others decide your pathway now. You should be defined by your own image. It’s ok to fail, fall…get up and keep it moving.”This page is regularly updated.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

first_imgLeroy Fer returns to the QPR starting line-up for the game against Liverpool at Anfield. Fer will support striker Charlie Austin in the absence of Bobby Zamora, who is not fit enough to start.Zamora is among the Rangers substitutes, as is young forward Reece Grego-Cox.Liverpool are without strikers Daniel Sturridge and Mario Balotelli but Lucas is available again after injury and is on the bench. Liverpool: Mignolet, Can, Skrtel, Lovren, Johnson, Gerrard, Henderson, Lallana, Sterling, Coutinho, Lambert. Subs: Ward, Toure, Moreno, Lucas, Allen, Ibe, Markovic . QPR Green, Onuoha, Caulker, Dunne, Hill, Phillips, Barton, Sandro, Henry, Fer, Austin. Subs: McCarthy, Yun, Wright-Phillips, Kranjcar, Hoilett, Zamora, Grego-Cox. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

first_imgAbout 10.5% of all South Africans have access to the internet, or 4.59-million people, over a third of them – the majority – aged between 18 and 29.The country has 5.3-million personal computer users, making up 11% of the total population. Its online market is dominated by information and social networking websites, according to web information company Alexa, which lists Google.co.za as the top site, followed by Facebook.The top web brand in South Africa is News24, followed by MSN.South Africa’s online advertising industry is worth R319-million and growing rapidly, online retail generates R688-million in sales, and online air ticket sales R3-billion.There are roughly 26 000 South African blogs, read by over 600 000 people.Sections in this article:Internet access Computer access Online advertising Online retailBlogging in South AfricaRelated articlesUseful links Internet access At the end of 2008 roughly 10.5% of South Africans had access to the internet: a total of 4.59-million local web users, or one in 9 people in a population of 43.79-million. This represents a growth of 12.55%, the biggest since 2001.This is according to Internet Access in South Africa 2008, a report released in March 2008 by World Wide Worx, South Africa’s most authoritative electronic communication research company.South Africa’s web users connect to the internet in four ways:Fixed-line narrow-band dial-up via conventional telephone lines, provided by Telkom Fixed-line broadband via asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) connection, provided by Telkom and a third-party internet service provider (ISP)Wireless broadband via GPRS, 3G or HDSPA technology on cellular-phone networks, provided by local mobile-phone service providers MTN and Vodacom Wireless broadband provided by iBurst, from WBS, and other ISPs.Fixed-line dial-up connection has long been the most-used form of internet access in South Africa, which has lagged behind more developed countries’ uptake of broadband.But broadband is set to take over, especially with Seacom, the first of the major new undersea cables, coming into operation in mid-2009. World Wide Worx predicts that dial-up will be all but phased out at this point – dial-up has already dropped from its peak of 1.08-million in 2004 to 700 000 in 2008. Broadband subscriptions, on the other hand, soared from 818 000 in 2007, to 1 308 000 in 2008; a growth rate of 60%.“Once everyone who is connected is on broadband or high-speed networks, the Internet will come into its own as an environment for business collaboration and personal interaction,” says World Wide Worx managing director Arthur Goldstuck.“Broadband has not yet made a major impact on overall connectivity numbers, even while dramatically increasing the usage of those who are already connected,” adds Goldstuck, who has been tracking the internet market since 1993. “The majority of broadband users are simply migrating up the connectivity food chain, from dial-up to broadband.”Telkom’s ADSL offering has been the main driver of broadband adoption in South Africa for the last four years, but has been overtaken by wireless broadband subscriptions, which now outnumber ADSL by 750 000 to 558 000 in 2008. World Wide Worx predicts that ADSL will continue to be the principal form of connectivity for most broadband users until the latter part of 2009.The study shows that the only broadband offering attracting large numbers of new users, rather than upgrading existing users, is iBurst. Until now the growth of iBurst has been held back by availability, but through its relationship with Vodacom it is expected to make a dramatic impact over the next two years.Internet users According to Nielsens Netratings research, published by the Online Publishers’ Association, the user base is becoming more male-dominated, with 58% of South Africans online in December 2008 being male, as opposed to 55% in December 2007. This represents an increase of 3.2%.The audience is also ageing slightly, with the older demographic groups increasing their share the most; with a 0.6% increase, the 50+ group saw the greatest increase.Some 22% had a degree, 15% a postgraduate degree, and 17% had a household income of over R400 000.Computer access South Africa has 5.3-million personal computer (PC) users, or 11% in a population of 47.85-million – one computer for every nine people.This is according to PC Users in South Africa 2006 , a study released in June 2006 by World Wide Worx.The study was conducted by Arthur Goldstuck and Kirsty Laschinger. Its approach was to move beyond a conventional tally of computer sales to establish how long PCs, laptops and servers remain in use once they have entered the market, and how many are in active use. For the first time, this has provided a clear picture of the size of South Africa’s PC user base.“PCs have a life span ranging three to six years, while laptop computers tend to be used for only up to three years,” says Laschinger, who interviewed most of the country’s major PC manufacturers and distributors for the project.“It was an eye-opener how many vendors of computers expect all users to replace their PCs every two to three years, when the reality is many users ‘sweating their assets’ to get maximum value from the purchase.”Booming sales in PCs mean not only more people using new computers, but also that PCs already in the field remain in use for a longer period, further boosting the user base. But this trend may change once laptop computers overtake desktop PCs in popularity – a real possibility in the next few years.“Laptop computers cannot be upgraded as easily or as cheaply as desktop PCs, so they have a shorter useful life,” says Goldstuck. “You can upgrade a PC bought more than five years ago to accommodate current software, but it’s unlikely you could do that with most laptops. The result is that old laptops are more likely to be discarded than passed on, while old PCs are more likely to have a second life once the user upgrades.”The net result is that booming laptop sales will not have the same cumulative effect on the total user base as do PC sales. Nevertheless, growth will continue, but at a slower pace, in the years to come.Factors that will drive this growth include:Continued strong economic growthThe emergence of the black middle classImproved education levels, including computer literacyThe evolution of the distribution channelImproved affordability of PCs, both as a result of cheaper product and new financing optionsConvergence of voice and dataTechnology improvementsDemand for more server/ storage capability to meet higher levels of corporate governance requirements.Top websitesThe Online Publishers’ Association (OPA) represents South Africa’s top mainstream commercial website publishers.Membership is restricted to internet publishers who:are dedicated to building a sustainable online publishing businesspublish original content on the internetuse online advertising and sponsorship as their primary sources of incomeare committed to best practice in online publishingAccording to the OPA, in the second quarter (April to June) of 2007 the top 20 websites in South Africa were:TOP 20 COMMERCIAL WEBSITESRank Website Publisher Unique browsers Active Reach 1news24.com Media24 980 69021%2MSNMSN705 78415%3mweb.co.za MWeb647 89214%4webmail.co.za Interface 593 29213%5HotmailMSN573 52712%6iol.co.za Independent Online556 44712%724.comMedia24 487 43810%8fin24.co.za Media24 289 9836%9careerjunction.co.zaCareerJunction279 4776%10health24.co.za Media24 260 6796%11iafrica.com Primedia Online257 7146%12yellowpages.co.zaYellow Pages South Africa253 4115%13ananzi.co.za Ananzi238 4155%14Autotrader.co.zaAuto Trader233 4615%15Mail & Guardian Online M&G Online208 6134%16wheels24.co.za Media24 195 9234%17supersport.co.za SuperSport Zone187 3694%18women24.comMedia24 178 6104%19The TimesAvusa165 7994%20Junkmail-zaJunkmail164 2274%Source: South African Online Publishers Association Online advertising Online advertising in South Africa grew at the fastest rate of all countries in the English-language world in 2008, and is likely to repeat this performance in 2009. This is according to the Online Media in South Africa 2009 study, conducted by World Wide Worx in collaboration with the OPA.The findings indicate growth of 32% in online advertising in 2008, after 27% growth in 2007. Actual online advertising spend in 2008 reached R319-million, from R240-million the year before. This is in line with a 2006 study by World Wide Worx, which foresaw that online advertising spend would pass R200-million in 2007. The robust growth, according to the study, is indicative of growing confidence in the online medium.OPA chair Adrian Hewlett attributes the growth to three key trends:Increased awareness of the inherent potential of online advertising has resulted in a growing pool of online advertisers;There has been a considerable boost in digital adoption by traditional media buying and creative agencies, as well as new specialist agencies;Additional publishers have entered the market, further promoting the online proposition and maturing the online advertising market.Another interesting trend that has emerged, is that online advertising spend is set to overtake that of the cinema. The growth forecast for 2009 is 32% for online, while advertising growth in cinema will show very little movement.“While online economics in South Africa are different to those of traditional commerce, there is little doubt that a recession in the physical world would make itself felt in the online environment, but the 2009 expectation shows how robust this sector remains,” says Goldstuck.This significant development will further encourage traditional buying agencies to embrace the online medium.The 2008 study also showed that the only other mature Internet market where online advertising appears to be growing faster than South Africa is Brazil. The South American country shows a massive 45% growth for 2008.Other English-speaking markets which traditionally had outpaced South Africa in 2006 and 2007, such as the US, UK, Canada and Australia, declined during in 2008. None managed to achieve 30% growth – growth in the US was a meagre 11% and in the UK growth fell to 22%. Neither country is expected to break through 10% in 2009.Rich media banners – ads that allow the user to interact with them – share top position with the static banner in terms of revenue generating advertising in South Africa.Online retail By the end of 2007, online spending on retail goods in South Africa is expected to have grown by more than 35%, after 33% growth in 2006.The total spent on online retail goods in South Africa in 2007 is expected to be R929-million, up from R688-million in 2006, according to Online Retail in South Africa 2007 , a report released by World Wide Worx in October 2007.These figures exclude the sale of air tickets online, which continue to dwarf the numbers for online retail. The five South African airlines selling tickets online, namely kulula.com, FlySAA.com, Mango, and 1Time between them accounted for R2.3-billion in e-commerce in 2006, almost four times the size of conventional online retail. The figure is expected to rise above R3-billion in 2007.These numbers indicate a dramatic turnaround in online retail in South Africa, which appeared to be stagnating in 2005. The 2006 recovery is being sustained in 2007, with all indications being of even more dramatic growth in 2008.The number of online retail sites has also grown substantially, from 826 in 2005 to 1014 in 2007. This growth has come despite 310 sites – more than a third of those online at the end of 2005 – closing down from 2005 to 2007. However, no less than 498 new sites came online during this time.The online retail market is dominated by 12 sites, which between them account for more than three quarters of online retail sales in South Africa, according to World Wide Worx. They are:The three largest online malls: M-Web Shopping, The eBucks Shop and Digital Mall The two largest online grocers: Pick ‘n Pay Home Shopping and Woolworths The two largest online book retailers: Kalahari.net and Exclusive Books The largest online florist: NetFlorist The largest online wine retailer: Cybercellar The largest online electronics store: Digital Planet The largest online health and beauty store: Ascot Direct The largest auction site: Bidorbuy Blogging in South Africa There were a total of 26 197 blogs in South Africa at the end of December 2007, compared with 25 037 blogs just four months before. World Wide Worx research shows that for the period of January to March 2008, the following activity was reported on South African blogs:Number of blogs (December 2007): 26 179Active blogs: 3 789Percent of active blogs: 14.5%Monthly posts for January 2008: 48 120Average monthly page views in 2008: 5 226-millionMonthly page views for January 2008: 10 448-millionThe key moments, says Goldstuck happened in 2007, and they were the launches of Afrigator, the continent’s first blogging aggregator; Amatomu, the first comprehensive tracking service for blogs and bloggers in South Africa; My Digital Life by ITWeb, which put solid commercial resources and interests behind blogging; and The Times, the first mainstream newspaper to embrace blogs and the social networking environment.As a result, he adds, it is clear that blogging is no longer just a fad, as indicated by the explosion of activity that occurred in July and August 2007. This represents a true tipping point for the phenomenon.According to Afrigator, South Africa dominates the African blog space, with nearly three in every five blogs attributable to the country.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Mary Alexander at [email protected] articles The media in South AfricaSouth Africa onlineSouth African televisionRadio in South AfricaSouth Africa’s commercial radio stationsSouth Africa’s public broadcasting radio stationsSouth Africa’s community radio stationsUseful links World Wide Worx Online Publishers’ Association Internet access: Telkom MTN Vodacom iBurst Top websites: news24.com iol.co.za www.mweb.co.za webmail.co.za health24.co.za iafrica.com Mail & Guardian Online fin24.co.za bidorbuy.co.za ananzi.co.za careerjunction.co.za motoring.co.za wheels24.co.za supersport.co.za women24.com tonight.co.za autotrader.co.za sundaytimes.co.za busrep.co.za yellowpages.co.za Online retail: M-Web Shopping The eBucks Shop Digital Mall Pick ‘n Pay Home Shopping Woolworths Kalahari.net Exclusive Books NetFlorist Cybercellar Digital Planet Ascot Direct Bidorbuy kulula.com FlySAA.com Mango 1Time Blogging in South Africa Thought Leader Afrigator Amatomu My Digital Life The Timeslast_img read more

first_imgRobredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games That he departed this time with a surprisingly lopsided 7-6 (5), 6-3, 6-0 quarterfinal loss to sixth-seeded Dominic Thiem of Austria on Wednesday left everyone, including Djokovic, pondering the answers to difficult questions.Did he give up in the last set? What has happened to his once-impervious play? Can he summon that again? Does he need a break from the grind of the tour?FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“It’s a fact that I’m not playing close to my best, and I know that,” Djokovic said after his first straight-set loss at a major since the 2013 Wimbledon final. “For me, it’s a whole new situation that I’m facing.”Since completing his career Grand Slam at the French Open 12 months ago, Djokovic has participated in four majors in a row without earning a trophy. He also lost his No. 1 ranking to Andy Murray. With the wind whipping at more than 15 mph (25 kph), and the temperature in the low 50s (low teens Celsius), Djokovic was out of sorts in so many ways even before that 20-minute third set in which he won only 8 of 34 points. It’s only the second time Djokovic lost a final set by the score of 6-0 in his 937 career tour-level matches.“It’s hard to comment (on) the third set. Obviously, nothing was going my way and everything his way,” Djokovic said. “Just pretty bad set.”But both men thought the match was decided in the first set, when Djokovic held two set points at 5-4, 15-40 on Thiem’s serve. Thiem erased the first with a forehand volley and the other with a service winner that prompted Djokovic to roll his eyes.Djokovic’s backhand really let him down in the tiebreaker: All seven points won by Thiem ended with that stroke.In all, Djokovic made nearly twice as many unforced errors, 35, as winners, 18.“More or less, all the parts of my game are kind of going up and down. I’m feeling like I’m missing consistency,” Djokovic said. “I play a great match or two in a row, and then I play a completely opposite match. That’s what happened today.”Still, how unlikely was this result? Djokovic had won all five previous matches — and 11 of 12 sets — against Thiem, including in the French Open semifinals a year ago.Plus, Djokovic had appeared in a record six consecutive semifinals in Paris.Now he is at a crossroads of sorts. He just turned 30. He split from coaches Boris Becker and Marian Vajda and other members of his team, bringing aboard Andre Agassi for Week 1 of the French Open.On Wednesday, he wouldn’t rule out some time off. Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ “It’s obviously tough to get out of it and figure out the way how to move ahead. At least I’m trying,” Djokovic said. “I know that I have achieved the biggest heights in this sport, and that memory and that experience gives me enough reason to believe that I can do it again.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Ronaldo stays atop Forbes list of richest athletes; LeBron 2nd View comments Serbia’s Novak Djokovic falls as he plays Austria’s Dominic Thiem during their quarterfinal match the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium. APPARIS — His French Open title defense nearing an end, Novak Djokovic stumbled and tumbled to his knees on the red clay, his racket flying from his right hand as his opponent’s backhand zipped past.Even Djokovic found it hard to fathom how far he’s fallen, only a year removed from leaving Roland Garros as a player nonpareil, the first man in nearly a half-century to win four consecutive Grand Slam titles.ADVERTISEMENT Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games MOST READ What ‘missteps’? Every 18 seconds someone is diagnosed with HIV Djokovic was runner-up at the U.S. Open but lost in the third round at Wimbledon, the first round at the Rio Olympics and the second round at the Australian Open.“The win here last year has brought a lot of different emotions. Obviously, it was a thrill and complete fulfillment, I guess,” Djokovic said during an expansive and frank news conference. “I have lived on that wave of excitement, I guess, ’til the U.S. Open or so. And at the U.S. Open, I just was emotionally very flat and found myself in a situation that I hadn’t faced before in (my) professional tennis career.”The 23-year-old Thiem next faces nine-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal, who advanced when No. 20 Pablo Carreno Busta stopped while trailing 6-2, 2-0 after injuring an abdominal muscle late in the first set.“I mean, it’s a joke how tough it is to win a Slam,” said Thiem, the only player who beat Nadal in one of his 23 clay-court matches this season. “Now I beat Novak. On Friday, (it’s) Nadal. In the finals, there is another top star.”In the other semifinal, 2016 runner-up Murray will face 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka in a matchup of three-time major title winners. Murray eliminated No. 8 Kei Nishikori 2-6, 6-1, 7-6 (0), 6-1 on Wednesday, while No. 3 Wawrinka won 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 against No. 7 Marin Cilic.ADVERTISEMENT BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken BSP survey: PH banks see bright horizon amid dark global recession clouds LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Palace: Duterte to hear out security execs on alleged China control of NGCPlast_img read more

first_imgAs the curtains came down on the 16th edition of the Asian Games, China once again showed what it takes to be a superpower. Surprisingly, despite a combined medals tally of 416 – 199 gold, 119 silver and 98 bronze – the hosts were still unhappy. On Saturday, some of the Indians at the Main Press Centre were shocked to hear some Chinese journalists lamenting that their country failed to notch up a double century of gold medals. At a time when the Indians are making a song and dance about the 14-gold haul, these Chinese journalists showed where we stand. Like the previous Asian Games, this one too has become a contest between China versus the rest, and not surprisingly, a lot had to do with mindset. When Beijing got to know it would be hosting the 2008 Olympics, the whole of China was in a state of euphoria. In every aspect, their preparations began years in advance with no room for excuses. It is this kind of approach which scares the world when people talk of China as an emerging sporting nation which can one day overtake the US in the Olympics medals tally. So what is it about the Chinese system that they produce such strong world beaters?The other day, a top Sports Authority of India official at the Aoti shooting ranges in Guangzhou gave an explanation as to “how the Chinese system is so good”. The official had no hesitation in admitting that we are way behind China in terms of a sporting culture. That’s the secret of China’s prowess. Sample these cold facts. China invests in sport in such a big way that the athletes don’t have to worry about their future even if they fail. Contrast this with India where failure could not only be the end of an athlete’s career but the person may be consigned behind a desk for the rest of his/her life. THE difference lies in how China nurtures talent from a very early age. There are over 3,500 staterun athletics programmes alone where over four lakh athletes strive for excellence. But only a few make the grade.advertisementCompare this with India, where sporting programmes are yet to be broad-based. The nurseries of hockey are on the wane and if you talk in terms of sheer numbers as to how many synthetic tracks or hockey pitches we have, there is just no comparison. At a time when we are debating the corruption in CWG, it is the clean system in China which matters. Official estimates say the Chi-nese government spends between $750 million-$1 billion a year on sports and the result is for everyone to see. In contrast, our sports budget was below `500 crore, which is around $10 million a year. Unless the budget in India is increased manifold, athletes would continue to be produced despite the system.It is well known that China used the Guangzhou Games as a build-up for the 2012 London Olympics. Of the 970 Chinese athletes who took part in Guangzhou, 650 were new and are being groomed for the next Olympics. Talk about planning and surely China knows how to do it well.last_img

first_imgThe International Cricket Council is leaving no stone unturned to prevent match-fixing during next year’s World Cup.”We have taken necessary steps to check match-fixing. We now have more people in the fold to keep a check on these matters,” said Lorgat in New Delhi on Thursday.He was speaking at a press conference organised by ICC’s broadcast partner for the World Cup, ESPN Star Sports, which was attended by Imran Khan, Kapil Dev, Sir Vivian Richards and Arjuna Ranatunga.He even addressed the security issue in the wake of the Varanasi blasts, saying, “These things are a fact of life. But we have a system in place to take care of it. Safety and security are our prime concern. We have a security delegation that has been working on it for a month now.”Touching upon the much-debated Decision Review System (DRS), Lorgat said, “It’s a new technology and is still being tested. We won’t be able to implement the DRS during the league phase as it won’t be logistically possible. But it will be used during the knock-out stages and I hope it will be appreciated.”Highlighting the excitement surrounding the World Cup, he said, “it’s the topic for discussion even at the Ashes. I have just returned from the Ashes in Adelaide and the talk there often centres on the World Cup.””It’s the sub-continent’s Cup,” he added and said, “It’s going to be even greater than the last one.”To make sure that it’s a crowd puller the ICC has ensured that tickets are affordable. “Sharad Pawar, the ICC president, had clearly instructed long before the plans were afoot that the tickets were affordable.”advertisementEarlier, tournament director Ratnakar Shetty pointed out that apart from the six India matches, which are expected to be crowd-pullers during the league phase; it will be a challenge for the host associations in various states to bring in the crowds in non-India games.In the same vein, he praised the government’s effort in “relaxation of the multiple entry visa for the foreign spectators”, which will help in bringing in the crowds to the stadium.Shetty also stated, “emphasis during this World Cup is not the number of seats (that will be occupied), but the facilities that will be provided.””Good facilities for spectators, media and broadcasters are our primary concern. In keeping with this agenda we have renovated the Chennai Stadium, the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai and the Eden Gardens in Kolkata.”last_img read more