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Sherwood sweating on Aston Villa striker’s fitness ahead of FA Cup semi-final

first_img1 Aston Villa striker Gabriel Agbonlahor Tim Sherwood will wait until the last minute before deciding on whether to pick Gabby Agbonlahor in Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final against Liverpool.The forward injured his hamstring during last weekend’s 1-0 win over Tottenham, making him a doubt for this weekend’s cup clash at Wembley.Since Sherwood’s arrival the 28-year-old has formed a formidable partnership with Christian Benteke, with the pair of them hitting 11 goals in their past seven games.But, Villa may have to cope without Agbonlahor for Sunday’s semi-final with the Reds as Sherwood sweats over his fitness.“Ciaran Clark has come off with a bad medial ligament injury so he will not be fit,” said Sherwood.“Gabby we are going to give up until the last possible moment to prove he is fit. Scott Sinclair will be back though.”last_img read more


first_imgFOOTBALL: There was heartbreak for Kevin McHugh’s Donegal Kennedy Cup squad yesterday afternoon as they exited the main competition on goal difference! McHugh’s side kicked off their campaign with a fantastic 3-1 win over Carlow. Donegal were superb throughout the match, and completed dominated proceedings from start-to-finish, playing a brand of football that really caught the eye.McHugh rang the changes on Tuesday morning for the side’s clash with Wicklow, with Donegal playing that evening against Kerry, he had to utilize his squad – and made nine changes.However, Donegal didn’t cope well with the physicality of the Wicklow side, and failed to get to grasp with their directly style of play, they fell to a shock 1-0 defeat.Later that day, Donegal played Kerry and produced a stunning to performance to beat last year’s Kennedy Cup winners 2-0. It wasn’t enough though, and Kerry agonisingly went through on goal difference, and made the last eight of the competition.McHugh’s side go in the plate side of the competition and will be hoping to bring back that trophy.McHugh’s side face Kilkenny tonight and we wish them well in the match.HEARTBREAK FOR DONEGAL KENNEDY CUP SQUAD AS THEY FAIL TO TOP GROUP ON GOAL DIFFERENCE was last modified: June 15th, 2016 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Donegal SchoolboysKennedy CupKevin McHughnewsSportlast_img read more


first_imgDONEGAL SET TO STAGE A KNOCK-OUT IN ROUND FOURMichael MurphyDing-a-ling a-ling. Round Four. And the one guarantee is there’s going to be a knock-out in this one and the one sprawled out on the canvas will be heading home and no climbing back into the ring again this year.Donegal or Galway? A couple of months ago you would have confidently put your bottom dollar on Rory Gallagher’s men to overcome the Tribesman. But they’ve already tasted Ulster blood this year in the form of Derry and Armagh and won’t mind piling more misery on the Province.In Kevin Walsh – no relation but I’ll uncover one if Galway go on to win the All-Ireland – they have an emerging manager who has helped transform the county from basic also-rans to proper contenders.And yet, I don’t get a sense of real fear coming out of Donegal. Not over confidence but a measured approach that suggests they’ll be well up for it and won’t be sweating buckets in the dressing-room beforehand. The fact that it’s a C roke Park dressing-room won’t make any difference to this Donegal team who’ve been there before and worn the jersey, much more so than their opponents in recent times.The thrill of lining-out at G.A.A. headquarters is gradually being eroded with every passing year given that it was once the preserve of semi-finalists and finalists and is now open to the Round Four back door qualifiers which, I believe, is not particularly good for the game or the Championship but that’s a story for another day.Yes, Donegal will be without one of the most inflential players of his generation, Karl Lacey, and that does represent a bit of a blow to the solar plexus. And, yes too, they haven’t quite lit up this Championship series as yet in the manner we know they can.I still don’t believe they have the winning of the All-Ireland in them this year but they surely should have the beating of Galway particularly if they can start deploying Michael Murphy where he’s most effective – right up in the full forward position which can damage even the most hardy of defensive formations.Mayo await the winners in the quarter-finals – an added motivation for the Galwaymen who owe their Connacht rivals a beating or two. But they’ll have to wait for next year’s Championship to get that opportunity even if they’ll look back to 2001 when they became the first team to win an All-Ireland having come through the back door to get there.YOUTH HITTING THE HEIGHTS – AND THE LENGTHS The eyes and ears will be carefully focusing on far-off Tiblisi tomorrow, Thursday, but whatever the outcome from the Youth Olympics, our local athletes have already done us proud.Arlene Crossan – through to the Final of the Long Jump with a leap of 5.98.Sommer Lecky – through to the Final of the High Jump having achieved a jump of 1.72 m.Aaron McGlynn – through to the Final of the 800 metres, having coming home second in his heat in a time of 1:57:77.Little wonder Finn Valley A.C. hold the title of best club in Ireland.Cork athlete, Ciara Neville, has already claimed a gold medal for her country in the 100 metres at the event. Can the F.V. trio follow suit? It shouldn’t surprise any of us if they do.ULSTER SAYS YES! So how to beat Monaghan in an Ulster Final? How indeed? Ah yes, send the ladies out to do it.A couple of weeks after Rory Gallagher’s men saw their title wrestled from them, Davy McLaughlin had better joy – you couldn’t say luck because this was far from fortunate – when his charges created their own piece of Provincial history in the decider at Clones on Sunday.It may have been tight in the early stages but with Donegal heading in out of the rain at the half-way stage holding a three point advantage, it was put up to Monaghan to claw their way back into proceedings. And they found their opponents in no mood to surrender their lead or their grip on that coveted title.Once again, Geraldine McLaughlin wrote her way into the headlines, scoring 2-7 of her side’s total of 2-12 in typically deadly fashion.Coincidentally, the sports supplement of Monday’s ‘Irish Times’ carried a full-page feature on women’s football highlighting just some of the stand-out players in the game at present. No mention of the Termon woman who, earlier in the year, had helped inspire her club side to an All-Ireland title but it surely can’t be long before the national media start taking note of this remarkable sportswoman.As far as our county team is concerned, that talent isn’t just confined to the lively McLaughlin. Naomh Conaill star, Aoife McDonnell was named player of the match on Sunday after an inspirational performer but every single member of this team and additional squad deserve credit for the manner in which they disposed of favourites, Monaghan.It’s a pity the game didn’t get the television coverage it deserved but to be fair to TG4, who have done a great job in promoting the women’s game in recent years, they were committed to the Tour de France and certainly couldn’t have afforded to miss the closing stages of the event on Sunday afternoon.I didn’t make it along to the Final in Clones and instead listened to Oisin Kelly go close to occasions to leaping out of my radio into the kitchen so excited was the Highland Radio commentator as the match wound its way to full-time.FLOOD OF CONGRATULATIONSSuccess also at the weekend for Donegal’s under-21 hurlers who edged out neighbours Tyrone to claim All-Ireland glory in the C Final at Celtic Park.Paddy Flood’s team won by a goal that came courtesy of the influential Eddie Lynch late on. Not exactly a thing of beauty – that’s the goal, not Eddie! – but nevertheless a thrilling way to help win your team a title.Manager Flood reckons quite a few of his charges will be challenging for places in the county’s senior team and who can argue.HARPS MUST NOT CONFUSE PASSION WITH INDISCIPLINEStudents. Just when you expect them to be out demonstrating on grant cuts and following that up with a couple of bevys in somewhere like the Cottage Bar on Letterkenny’s Main Street (where those of us who once occupied lecture hall space in the old Regional Technical College used to congregate of an afternoon), they go and take up football and prove pretty useful at it.Not that the students of University College Dublin might have counted the Cottage as among their pinting dens but they sure know how to play the beautiful game even so far as getting through the first round of the Europa League this season.We thought the second round second leg tie last Thursday might have taken the sting out of them but, no, there they were battling for all they were worth and proving a class above Finn Harps if only on the scoreboard.On Highland Radio on the day prior to the game at the Belfield Bowl, Ollie Horgan had warned of the influence of Robbie Benson and how he could change a game. And change it he did, around the time Packie Mailey had been forced to depart from the action with an injury, Benson rifling the ball past Ciaran Gallagher midway through the second half to ultimately seal the deal.It wasn’t enough to dislodge Harps from the top spot but it allowed U.C.D. back into a race they had been edging out of, albeit with matches in hand due to their European commitments, and will also have relieved Wexford Youths who threw away the opportunity of leap-frogging their Donegal promotion rivals by slipping up in Athlone.And that 3-1 win for the midlanders will steel them with firm resolve for their visit to Finn Park this Friday night where Harps will hope to have central defender, Mailey, back from that injury.Once again, however, the Harps disciplinary record is being called into question after the promise of improvements in the early stages of the season following a glut of red cards in the2014 campaign. Five yellow cards in the opening half alone at Belfield tells its own story and now Horgan – himself prone to the occasional tangle with officialdom – must line up without some key players for the key clash away to Wexford Youths the weekend after next.It may have some of the regular reserve players straining at the leash to be given the chance for inclusion but in the crucial run-in, Harps can ill afford to be without the likes of Kevin McHugh, Damian McNulty, Ciaran Coll, and Tommy McMonagle, who was dismissed – somewhat harshly it has to be stressed – near the end of Sunday’s game in Dublin.But without them they will be for that game in Wexford where Harps won by the only goal earlier in the campaign.BACK ON TRACKMark EnglishIt’s not just footballers that U.C.D. produce though strictly speaking the college can never say it produced Mark English even if he is a member of the athletic club there.The Letterkenny man showed something of his best at the Anniversary Games in London at the weekend when he not alone ran a season’s best in the 800 metres but in doing so had his entry form for the Rio Olympics officially signed.English emerged from the chasing pack to claim fourth in the race in a time of 1:45:49 and book his flight to Brazil next year.The only disappointment was the failure of the B.B.C. commentary team to even given him a mention during their live coverage of the race. To be fair, they’re normally not adverse to giving Irish competitors due recognition but despite his late burst at the finish the man who claimed bronze in the European Championships last year and silver at the European Indoors this year wasn’t deemed worthy of reference.Hopefully they will be talking about him at the World Athletics Championships in Beijing next month. TOO QUICK ON THE DRAW?Roy KeaneHere, hold hard there. Did someone suggest we’ve been presented with a “favourable” World Cup draw?For all I’ve heard and read on the subject that appeared to be the general consensus among the footballing pundits here after the balls were pulled out in Zurich.Balls indeed. Wales? Going very well under Chris Coleman – and with one Gareth Bale in their ranks – and looking almost certain qualifiers for the European Championship Finals which is more than can be said for our lot. And Austria? Unbeaten home and away against the Republic in the equivalent qualifiers for the 2014 World Cup, albeit courtesy of a painful stoppage time equalizer at the Aviva Stadium which just about did for our hopes. And Serbia? One of the most improved sides in Europe and certain to sternly test us both in Belgrade and Dublin. Heck, we can’t even dismiss Moldova as an also-ran in Group D such is the measure of our own performances of late in attempting to make the boat for France.True, it could have been much worse given our fourth seed billing but it’s not exactly the picnic some have been portraying it as.Favourable indeed. To the Welsh, the Austrians and the Serbs. And the Moldovans might be having a good laugh as well.PREMIERSHIP PROMOTIONVery clever advertisement doing the rounds on television – remember it, the screen in the corner of your sitting-room you used to get all your kicks from before iPads, iPhones and social media arrived on the scene? – featuring Thierry Henry promoting SKY Sports pending coverage of the English Premiership.You catch snatches of some of the best moments from the self-styled “world’s best league” including Sergio Aguero’s last ditch title winner for Manchester City (er- did I say best moments?); Eric Cantona’s wonderful chipped goal against Sunderland at Old Trafford; the infamous spat between Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira in the Highbury tunnel; and a handful of other classic images besides. And in all of them, there’s Mons. Henry lurking in the goalmouth or watching from the stands or indeed standing a yard away from Mr. Keane during that heated pre-match exchange.Technology, huh? Amazing what it can do. And how you can so realistically place someone at a location where they weren’t.Of course, many of us are looking forward to SKY Sports doing a promotion of, say, World Cup qualifiers and having Mons. Henry standing near the goal-line watching himself hand the Republic of Ireland an exit pass at the Stade De France on November 18th, 2009.No, sorry, despite teams of psychologists continuing to treat me, I still can’t forgot. CAMOGIE GIRLS TAKE A BOW!In recent months this column has been following the fortunes of the Donegal Under-14 girls squad who were narrowly beaten by Tipperary in the All-Ireland Final after a replay but still can lay claim to an Ulster title.Time for camogie to get a mention this week and specifically the Letterkenny Gaels Under-14 girls who clinched the County Shield at the weekend.The girls were convincing winners over Four Masters at Tir Conaill Park on Friday night, putting in an impressive performance to take home the trophy.Well done to all and indeed to their opponents. Any team who reaches a Final is fully deserving of the credit that goes with it.My thanks to Gaels P.R.O., Mark McFadden, for forwarding on a report on the match and for acknowledging the driving force been the team, camogie coordinator Aideen Quinn, a native of Antrim.Indeed, I’ve seen Aideen’s commitment to the girls under-age teams and to the Gaels and this is due reward for her efforts over the years. And not forgetting coach Ann Marie Gibbons who put this team together.SPOT ON JOSEI love the story of the Mexican football fanatic who, not content with screaming at his T.V. set as the rest of us might do when watching his country concede a dubious penalty against Holland in the last World Cup took to twitter to declare: “no era penal”.But our hero, Josesomor26, wasn’t happy to leave it at that. And every day since the summer of 2014 he has tweeted that message to the Dutch F.A., FIFA and the Mexican Football Association.He finally, 392 tweets on, got a response from the Dutch authorities recently who insisted it was indeed a penalty.But it hasn’t stopped our Jose. He’s sticking to the spot on this one. No penalty. Or as they say down Mexico way: no era penal.MARATHON MANI’ve been asked to run the Dublin Marathon this year. But I’ve turned them down – it’s just too big an event to organise….PADDY WALSH ON WEDNESDAY: FLOODS, STUBBORN STUDENTS, ULSTER KNOCK-OUTS AND ENGLISH-MEN! was last modified: July 29th, 2015 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:Donegal DailyPaddy WalshSportlast_img read more

Five keys for the Raiders against Lions, Matthew Stafford

first_imgOAKLAND — Sure, it’s a dump. But to the Raiders, for five more games anyway, it’s home.The Raiders will have been away an unprecedented 48 days when they host the Detroit Lions Sunday at the Coliseum, having last played there on Sept. 15 when there was still a baseball infield and Patrick Mahomes was leading the Kansas City Chiefs to a 28-10 win.“I’m excited, man. I can’t wait,” Raiders safety Karl Joseph said. “It feels like it’s been forever. We’ve been on the road so long I think I …last_img

Inserting Darwin Where He Doesn’t Belong

first_imgChuck-in-the-Box keeps popping up in scientific literature having nothing to do with his theory.Chuck-in-the-Box pops up in unexpected places.[Note: ‘Darwin’ is being used here as a symbol or icon to represent his fundamental view about biology: specifically, his belief that all life diversified from microbes to man by a series of mistakes without any guidance or purpose. His current disciples may dispute some aspects of Darwin’s theory, but all continue to agree on that point. Many of them openly admire Darwin and use his terminology of ‘natural selection’ to explain everything.]As you peruse the following news items, ask yourself what on earth they have to do with Darwinian evolution. The observations neither require nor support evolution, and sometimes contradict it. Yet the authors crank their Chuck-in-the-Box toys anyway, and the Joker pops up, scaring the children and distracting the reader. Perceptive analysts may rightly ask, ‘What is Charlie doing here?’In First Things (Nov 2000), Michael Behe noted,The relationship between Darwinism and real science is parasitic. The theory’s main use is for Darwinists to claim credit for whatever biology discovers. If research shows that humans are selfish, Darwinism can explain that. If science shows we are unselfish, why, it can explain that too. If we are a combination of both — no problem. If cells are simple or complex, if sexual reproduction is common or rare, if embryos are similar or different, Darwinism will explain it all for you. The elasticity of the theory would make Sigmund Freud blush.Here are some recent examples in the news.Bedbugs evolved more than 100 million years ago – and walked the earth with T. rex (University of Sheffield). In this article with video, Mike Siva-Jothy announces that the old story of bedbug evolution was off by 100%. His team estimates that bedbugs ‘evolved’ 100 million years ago, twice the age of the bats evolutionists used to think were their hosts. This means bedbugs must have preyed on dinosaurs like T. rex, which they admit seems ‘unlikely.’ Do the early bedbugs look primitive? No; they were already specialized for feeding on individual hosts, and look just like modern bedbugs. The paper in Current Biology gives no indication that they evolved from imaginary pre-bedbugs. Siva-Jothy admits,To think that the pests that live in our beds today evolved more than 100 million years ago and were walking the earth side by side with dinosaurs, was a revelation. It shows that the evolutionary history of bed bugs is far more complex than we previously thought.But they didn’t evolve! They were bedbugs; they are bedbugs. The evolutionary story is now more ‘complex’ and incredible than it was before. Where is any repentance for having misled the public all this time? What’s Charlie got to do with it? Get him out of here!Dolphin ancestor’s hearing was more like hoofed mammals than today’s sea creatures (Vanderbilt University). Underneath the pompous headline, we learn that echolocating dolphins have fewer spiral turns in their inner ear cochlea than some land mammals. That’s it. CT scanning of fossil bones is fine, but even if one were to grant the tale that toothed whales (including dolphins) evolved from hoofed mammals by chance, the evidence shows devolution – not evolution – of the cochlea. Plus, it says absolutely nothing about how the irreducibly complex phenomenon of echolocation originated, as animated beautifully in Illustra Media’s nature film Living Waters. What’s Darwin got to do with it?Dolphin echolocation is a highly-complex, integrated system of many matched parts with extremely-precise performance. It is beyond the reach of chance or gradual, stepwise natural selection, because if any component were missing, it would not work. (Illustra Media, Living Waters)Because echolocation is useful for navigating dark waters, natural selection likely came into play with its development in the branch that survived, she said. The findings appear today in The Royal Society journal Biology Letters.“It’s useful, therefore it evolved.” That’s absurd. They’re using their assumption of evolution as evidence of evolution. This is the kind of parasitic Darwinism that Behe complained about, taking credit for anything and everything after the fact. Moreover, the paper appeals to the Darwin-Flubber ingredient of “convergence” in order to save Darwinism from falsification, illustrating Behe’s quip that Darwinism is so elastic it would make Sigmund Freud blush. With this in mind, watch the short video clip in the press release, and groan over two brainwashed young biologists trained to speak Darwinese when the actual evidence opposes their belief.The structure of musical harmony as an ordered phase of sound (Science Advances). What could be more a proof of human intelligent design than music? (Well, some music). In this dubious paper, published in a peer-reviewed open-access AAAS journal, Jesse Berezovsky attempts to explain the evolution of music from the bottom up. He says, “an effective system of music must have some degree of complexity to provide a sufficiently rich palette from which to compose.” OK. He continues, “A recognition of this idea has led to work on quantifying complexity in music, including by computing the entropy S of music in the context of information theory” – still OK so far; “or by considering musical systems to be self-organizing via an evolutionary process.” What? How did Darwin sneak in here?No Bach needed. Music can emerge by self-organization, claims Jesse Berezovsky.Just as in physical systems where ordered phases with lower symmetry (e.g., crystals) emerge across transitions from higher-symmetry disordered phases (e.g., liquids), we observe ordered phases of music self-organizing from disordered sound. These ordered phases can replicate elements of traditional Western and non-Western systems of music, as well as suggesting new directions to be explored.[Note: self-organization is a variation on Darwinism that tries to invoke physics to fill in gaps in traditional Darwinism.] A gadfly could have some fun with this notion by testing it on Berezovsky’s own composition. A modern Socrates might joke, “Just as in physical systems snowflakes emerge from disordered water molecules, scientific papers can self-organize from scrambled letters in the same way tornadoes emerge from air currents.” This means Berezovsky is out of a job, because texts about the emergence of music can self-organize by the same physical process as crystallization. And since semantics or concepts are superfluous to this worldview, papers stating opposite positions can also self-organize by an evolutionary process. [Cue sound of implosion.]Cartoon by J. Beverly Greene commissioned by CEH. All rights reserved.Short Takes:Cannabis plant evolved super high (on the Tibetan Plateau) (New Scientist). Colin Barras notes that the cannabis exists on the Tibetan Plateau. Conclusion: it must have evolved there. What? Who  invited Charlie to the pot party?Scientists suss out the secrets of human screams (Medical Xpress). Some people scream. Conclusion: it must be an evolved behavior.Screaming is well-studied in animals, where it’s thought the behavior has evolved as a way to startle an attacking predator and provide a chance to escape, or, in social animals, to recruit help when in trouble. Surprisingly, much less is known about how human screams function in communication, or how similar or different human screams are from those of other species.Let’s try to comprehend this. Screaming exists, so it must have evolved, even though much less is known about human screams, which must have evolved from animal screams, because they evolved, too, “it’s thought” – by whom? Darwinists.That incessant Chuck-in-the-Box jingle followed by the inevitable pop-up Joker is enough to make you scream. “Half a pound of Stuff Happens Law / Half a pound of mutants / That’s the way the storyline goes / Pop! Goes the eyeball.” * *See the Popeye Theory of Evolution, 1 Aug 2018. 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San to benefit from medicinal plant deal

first_imgThe Act and its regulations outlaws any commercial bio-prospecting or export of any indigenous biological resource without a permit. The regulations also require that any benefits from indigenous biological knowledge be shared with community members. South Africa is a signatory to both these binding conventions. For centuries, the San have used the succulent Sceletium tortuosum, also known as kama, channa, or kougoed, for its medicinal properties. Contracted growers, royalties HGH Pharmaceuticals, which is working together with German firm Gehrlicker GmbH, has already concluded a US distribution deal with American company PL Thomas, and is presently in talks with South African distributors. Handing over the licence to HGH Pharmaceuticals during a ceremony at the Khwa Ttu San Cultural and Education Centre near Yzerfontein last week, Environmental Affairs Minister Buyelwa Sonjica said the granting of bio-prospecting licences would help local communities benefit from indigenous knowledge. Royalties from the sale of Zembrin will be paid to the South African San Council via a Bio-prospecting Trust Fund, and the local company will also acknowledge the San by including their endorsement logo on the product. 5 October 2010 He noted that the benefit-sharing agreement was fully compliant with the Convention for Biological Diversity of 1992 and the subsequent 2002 Bonn Guidelines, which encourage the equitable sharing of benefits derived from the use of traditional knowledge. The plant will be grown by contracted growers to avoid depleting local wild plant stocks. About 10 000 members of three San communities in the Western Cape are set to benefit from a royalty sharing agreement, following the granting of South Africa’s first bio-prospecting licence to a local company that aims to export Zembrin, an indigenous anti-stress product derived from the plant Sceletium tortuosum.center_img Biodiversity Act Sonjica said her department had received 52 applications for bio-prospecting, but only two had so far been granted – with HGH Pharmaceuticals being the first. HGH Pharmaceutical research director Nigel Gericke said it was an honour to receive the bio-prospecting licence. “It is the culmination of eight years of hard work and a testament to our commitment to working in a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable way,” he said. Sonjica said that although South Africa was ranked third in the world in terms of biodiversity (after Brazil and Indonesia), a lack of bio-prospecting regulations had resulted in indigenous biological resources being stolen and exported overseas for commercial or research purposes. He commended researcher Fiona Archer, who introduced him to the plant in 1990 and, five years later, to the Nourivier community. The licence to produce and export Zembrin was issued to HGH Pharmaceuticals in terms of the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act (2004). In all, 50% of the royalties received by the San will be distributed to the Paulshoek and Nourivier communities. HGH Pharmaceuticals did not disclose the royalty percentage, saying this was confidential. South African San Council chairman Andries Steenkamp thanked the government for granting the licence. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Chan 2014: tough draw for Bafana

first_img19 September 2013Host country South Africa were handed a tough draw for the 2014 African Nations Championship (Chan) when the groups for the finals were decided at the Confederation of African Football’s (Caf’s) headquarters in Cairo, Egypt on Wednesday.The annual Chan finals feature African national teams made up entirely of players from the domestic leagues of the different countries. South Africa is hosting the tournament from 11 January to 1 February 2014.At Wednesday’s draw, Bafana Bafana were drawn in Group A together with Mozambique Mali and Nigeria.Reigning African champions Nigeria are ranked 4th in Africa and 36th in the world in the latest Fifa rankings, with Mali just behind them at 5th and 38th. South Africa is ranked 12th on the continent (68th in the world), and Mozambique 32nd (116th).In August, Nigeria recorded their sixth win in eight outings against South Africa, beating Bafana 2-0 in Durban to win the 2013 Nelson Mandela Challenge. And it was Mali who put an end to Bafana’s strong run in the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in February, winning the penalty shootout 3-1 after the teams ended 1-1 in the quarterfinals of the tournament.“It is a tough draw, probably the toughest of the four groups, but I welcome it,” Bafana coach Gordon Igesund told the South African Football Association following the draw. “We could have drawn anyone and it could still have been tough because there are no easy matches any more in international competition.“It will also give the boys a massive boost should they qualify for the next stage having accounted for some of the big names in the early stages.“We are playing at home, and that should galvanise us to do well,” Igesund said, adding: “We are going to need all our best players so we can do well in this event.”Bafana Bafana will start their Chan campaign against Mozambique at Cape Town Stadium on 11 January before taking on Mali on 15 January and Nigeria on 19 January at the same venue.Group matches will also be played at Athlone Stadium in Cape Town, Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein, and Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane.Polokwane will also host one quarterfinal match, while Bloemfontein will host one quarterfinal and both semi-finals. Cape Town Cape Town will host two quarterfinals as well as the third-place playoff and the final on 1 February.SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Remembering Joe Slovo, 20 years on

first_img7 January 2015Yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of the death of Joe Slovo, the general secretary of the South African Communist Party (SACP) and a founding member of the Congress of Democrats.A stalwart of the struggle against apartheid, Slovo died on 6 January 1995.Slovo was chief of staff of Umkhonto weSizwe and he served on the revolutionary council of the ANC from 1969 until its dissolution in 1983.He served in South Africa’s first democratic Cabinet as housing minister.ChildhoodSlovo came to South Africa as a child when his family emigrated from Lithuania to escape Europe’s anti-Semitism.Educated in Johannesburg, he was influenced by a militant Irish teacher, John O’Meara. He left school after Standard 6 (Grade 8). He worked as a dispatch clerk at SA Druggists, joining the National Union of Distributive Workers. As a shopsteward, he was involved in organising a strike.Slovo joined the South African Communist Party in 1942, dedicating himself to gaining power for the people and removing the oppressive apartheid regime then ruling South Africa.Influenced by Red Army heroism, he left his surroundings in Doornfontein boarding house and volunteered to fight for the allies in World War II. He later became very active in the Springbok Legion.Political activismBetween 1946 and 1950, he attended Wits University in Johannesburg, where he completed his law degree. As a student, was politically active and involved in civil disobedience campaigns of the 1950s.In 1949 he married Ruth, the daughter of SACP treasurer Julius First. Both First and Slovo were listed as communists under the Suppression of Communism Act of 1954 and could not be quoted or attend public gatherings in South Africa.First was killed in 1982 by a parcel bomb, believed to have been sent by the apartheid regime to her office in Maputo, Mozambique.Slovo and First had three daughters – Shawn, Gillian and Robyn. Shawn’s account of her childhood “A World Apart” was turned into a movie.Slovo was a founder member of the Congress of Democrats. He represented COD on the national consultative committee of the Congress Alliance which drew up the Freedom Charter.ExileHe was arrested and detained for two months during the Treason Trial of 1956. Charges against him were dropped in 1958. He was later arrested for six months during the State of Emergency declared after Sharpeville in 1960.In 1961, Slovo emerged as one of the leaders of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the military arm of the ANC.In 1963, he was forced into exile – first to London, where he completed his LLM at the London School of Economics.First joined him in exile after her own detention later in 1963. While in exile Slovo continued his work for the SACP and ANC, moving to Mozambique in 1977 to establish an operational centre for the ANC.Two years after the death of Ruth First in 1982, South Africa and Mozambique signed the Nkomati Accord and Slovo was forced to leave Mozambique.Slovo was elected general secretary of the SACP in 1984. He was also MK’s chief of staff and a member of the national executive council’s working committee.ReturnSlovo returned to South Africa in 1990 to participate in the early “talks about talks” between the government and the ANC. Following a short period of ill health, he said he would not stand again as SACP general secretary.At the party’s congress in South Africa in December 1991, Slovo was elected SACP chairperson; with the late Chris Hani elected general secretary.Slovo was a leading theoretician in both the SACP and the ANC. He wrote numerous articles for the African Communist, of which he was former editor, as well as countless pamphlets. He also contributed to several books such as “No Middle Road”.Always portrayed as an arch-Stalinist by the former South African government, Slovo surprised his critics with his “Has Socialism Failed?” pamphlet in 1989, acknowledging the weaknesses of socialism and excesses of Stalinism.In 1992 an adapted form of his “Sunset Clause” document, allowing for a form of power sharing with the government, was adopted by the NWC.CommemorationSlovo loved classical music, particularly the work of Mahler, and his favourite book was Gogol’s “Dead Souls”. He was married to agricultural economist Helena Dolny and lived in Johannesburg.Dogged by ill-health from the early 1990s, Slovo died on 5 January 1995.At an event held at Avalon Cemetery in Soweto to commemorate the 20-year anniversary of Slovo’s death on Tuesday, Blade Nzimande, the party’s current secretary general, called on tripartite alliance partners – the ANC, the SACP and Cosatu – to use 2015 to forge unity.Read the speeches and writings of Joe Slovo on the SACP’s website: www.sacp.org.za/people/slovoSACP and SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Most Export Sales Bearish

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest OMAHA (DTN) — This week’s export sales report should be viewed as neutral for corn, and bearish for soybeans, wheat and milo, according to DTN Lead Analyst Todd Hultman.For the week ended May 2, 2019, USDA reported an increase of 11.3 million bushels (mb) (287,600 metric tons) of corn export sales for 2018-19 and an increase of 0.3 mb (6,900 mt) for 2019-20. Last week’s export shipments of 45.4 mb were below the 46.3 mb needed each week to achieve USDA’s export estimate of 2.300 billion bushel (bb) in 2018-19. Corn export commitments now total 1.824 bb in 2018-19 and are down 10% from a year ago. Thursday’s report was neutral for corn in 2018-19, Hultman said.For the week ended May 2, 2019, USDA reported a net cancellation of 5.5 million bushels (149,100 mt) of soybean export sales for 2018-19 and an increase of 10.9 mb (295,600 mt) for 2019-20. Last week’s export shipments of 22.3 mb were below the 36.6 mb needed each week to achieve USDA’s export estimate of 1.875 bb in 2018-19. Soybean export commitments now total 1.653 bb in 2018-19 and are down 18% from a year ago. Thursday’s report was bearish for soybeans in 2018-19, Hultman said.For the week ended May 2, 2019, USDA reported an increase of 3.3 million bushels (90,600 mt) of wheat export sales for 2018-19 and an increase of 15.1 mb (412,300 mt) for 2019-20. Last week’s export shipments of 24.4 mb were below the 29.5 mb needed each week to achieve USDA’s export estimate of 945 mb in 2018-19. Wheat export commitments now total 939 mb in 2018-19 and are up 9% from a year ago. Thursday’s report was bearish for wheat in 2018-19, Hultman said.For the week ended May 2, 2019, USDA reported an increase of 2.2 million bushels (54,900 mt) of sorghum export sales for 2018-19 and none for 2019-20. Last week’s export shipments of 0.4 mb were below the 2.7 mb needed each week to achieve USDA’s export estimate of 85 mb in 2018-19. Sorghum export commitments now total 62 mb in 2018-19 and are down 70% from a year ago. Thursday’s report was bearish for sorghum in 2018-19, Hultman said.Todd Hultman can be reached at [email protected] him on Twitter @ToddHultman(BAS)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Odisha govt. merges directorates with administrative departments

first_imgIn order to streamline the functioning of all directorates and speed up the process of decision making, the Odisha government has decided to integrate different directorates with their respective administrative departments to function as composite departments with immediate effect.According to a resolution passed by the General Administration and Public Grievance (GA & PG) Department on Wednesday, the integrated department shall function on the premises of the respective administrative departments/directorates as may be decided by the administrative department, keeping in view the availability of space and convenience.The move comes days after the State government appointed senior bureaucrat Asit Kumar Tripathy as the Chief Secretary, who, upon assuming the office, said he would ensure faster movement of files in all government offices in the State.Mr. Tripathy had said that all departments will adhere to the “5T initiative” — transparency, teamwork, technology, time and transformation — of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Mr. Patnaik holds the portfolio of the GA & PG Department.Single-file system There will be a single-file system through the Odisha Secretariat Workflow Automation System (OSWAS) and every proposal referred by the directorate shall not be required to be reinitiated or re-examined in the department, the resolution said.The different sections common to both the offices shall be appropriately reorganised and officers and staff will be utilised accordingly in the composite departments to ensure better efficiency and avoid duplication of work and wastage of time.Surplus staff, if any, shall be surrendered to the pool being managed by the administrative reforms cell of the GA & PG Department for redeployment and vacant posts at the lowest level shall be abolished as per the guidelines of the Finance Department. The staff concerned will continue to remain in their cadres and will avail all service benefits, the resolution stated.Necessary steps will be taken to make budget provisions for the composite department, and budget provisions for the integrated department shall be made from the next financial year in consultation with the Finance Department.The OSWAS system operative in the Secretariat shall be modified to integrate the directorates with their respective departments immediately and the directorates will submit only electronic files after due scanning of existing files, the resolution added.last_img read more