By Julien PretotVITTEL, France (Reuters) – World champion Peter Sagan was kicked out of the Tour de France yesterday after sending Mark Cavendish crashing to the ground in a hectic finale to the fourth stage, sending shockwaves through the three-week cycling extravaganza.Cavendish broke his shoulder blade in the crash and has withdrawn from the Tour, his Dimension Data team told Reuters.Sagan’s German team Bora-Hansgrohe has appealed against the decision of the race jury to throw the Slovak out of the Tour.French champion Arnaud Demare won the stage, a 207.5-km ride from Mondorf-les-Bains, Luxembourg, but all the drama took place just behind him in the final stretch of the race.Sagan appeared to knock Cavendish off balance with an extended elbow as the Briton was trying to force his way between him and the safety barrier, and Cavendish was sent crashing heavily to the ground.The Briton went to hospital for checks on his wrist and collarbone. Despite the fracture, the team doctor said no surgery was required and there was no nerve damage.Race jury president Philippe Marien had earlier told reporters Sagan would play no further part in the Tour.“Peter Sagan is disqualified from the 2017 Tour de France after today’s tumultuous sprint in Vittel,” he said.Marien cited Article 12 of the International Cycling Union (UCI) rules, which says any rider making a wilful obstruction “against one of the 1st 10 riders placed” faces elimination.But Sagan’s outfit want him reinstated, saying: “The team disagrees with the decision and protested it officially.“Peter Sagan rejected to have caused, or in any way intended to cause, the crash of Mark Cavendish on the final 200m of the stage. Peter stayed on his line in the sprint and could not see Cavendish on the right side.“The team applied for a redress of Peter Sagan’s result in stage 4.”THE ELBOWAfter the race Cavendish, wearing a sling, said: “I get on with Peter well… if he came across it’s one thing, but the elbow… I’m not a fan of him putting his elbow in me like that.”Sagan, who went to Cavendish’s team bus to apologise, later said in a team statement: “In the sprint I didn’t know that Mark Cavendish was behind me. He was coming from the right side, and I was trying to go on (Alexander) Kristoff’s wheel.“Mark was coming really fast from the back and I just didn’t have time to react and to go left. He came into me and he went into the fence.”German John Degenkolb, the 2016 Paris-Roubaix champion, also crashed as he ran into Cavendish on the ground.Cavendish eventually got back on his bike and crossed the line after being attended to by race medics.After pulling out of the race Cavendish said in a team statement: “I’m obviously massively disappointed to get this news about the fracture.
Museveni boostEarly in the week, the team got a big boost when they were hosted by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni at State House Entebbe at a function he organized to celebrate the 56th Independence Day.In a jovial mood, the President discussed football matters with the contingent before he announced his offer of a chartered flight to fly the Cranes to Maseru for the reverse fixture against Lesotho to be played on Tuesday 16th October, 2018.President Museveni also offered the Uganda Cranes contingent to State House a financial boost of UGX 200M (Two Hundred Million Shillings).‘The support from the President is a sign that he follows and loves sports. Football has been picking good results partly because of such support from the fountain of honour and office of Education and Sports. This offer will help the team fly in time to Maseru for the game’ said Mugisha.Collated Africa Cup of Nations qualifying results:Group BAt YaoundeCameroon 1 (Choupo-Moting 63) Malawi 0Standings (played, won, drawn, lost, goals for, goals against, points)Cameroon 3 2 1 0 3 1 7Morocco 2 1 0 1 3 1 3Malawi 3 1 0 2 1 4 3Comoros 2 0 1 1 1 2 1FixturesSaturday: Morocco v ComorosTuesday: Comoros v Morocco, Malawi v CameroonGroup CAt LibrevilleGabon 3 (Bouanga 28, Appidangoye 59, Martin 88-og) South Sudan 0 The Cranes team that faced Lesotho last week. They back in action today. PHOTO ? @officialfufaTODAY5pm: Tanzania ?? vs Cape Verde ??7pm: Uganda ?? vs Lesotho ??Standings Group LUganda 3 2 1 0 4 0 7C. Verde 3 1 1 1 4 2 4Lesotho 3 0 2 1 2 5 2Tanzania 3 0 2 1 1 4 2Maseru, Lesotho | THE INDEPENDENT | Uganda Cranes will be all out to try and stop Lesotho this evening at the Setsoto Stadium in Maseru to book an early slot for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).The Cranes are top of Group L with seven points after their 1-0 away win against Cape Verde, 0-0 draw with Tanzania last month and the convincing 3-0 win over the Crocodiles of Lesotho last Saturday.Victory for coach Sebastien Desabre’s team and a win for Cape Verde against Tanzania will see Uganda Cranes qualify even before playing the remaining two games.The win will see Uganda move to ten points, while Cape Verde’s victory will also see them move to seven points. Because Tanzania and Lesotho have two points each, the best they can collect is eight points which is far away from what the Cranes would have collected just in-case they suffer defeat in the remaining two games.“We need to win the game and be assured of qualification instead of waiting for the two games after,” Desabre told URN on Tuesday.“For some players it’s one time in a life time to qualify for the AFCON and this therefore calls for hard work to win the game,” he added.Desabre said playing on an artificial surface will not be a problem because many of his players know how to adjust to that surface. “For Lesotho they have an advantage because they are playing at home. But we shall fight because we know what this games means for us,” added the head coach.But the Lesotho coach Moses Maliehe says Uganda Cranes should not expect an easy game.“We are wounded Crocodiles. After losing 3-0 last week in Uganda, we are hurting and know how to answer back,” Maliehe told URN on Monday afternoon in Maseru.“Teams have not had it easy playing on our home pitch and Uganda should wait for their toughest test,” added Maliehe.“We badly need to win and call upon our fans to come out in large numbers to motivate us to win the game. I know we are facing a tough side, but we can get maximum points,” said winger Tumelo Khatlang.Ugandan Members of Parliament Annet Anita Among (Bukedea Woman MP), Micheal Tusiime (Mbarara Municiparlity MP), Peter Ogwang (Usuk County) and Ogwal Benson Obua (Moroto County) together with National Council of Sports Board Chairman John Bosco Onyik and the Acting General Secretary Dr. Patrick Ogwel are also in Maseru to cheer the team.*****SOURCE URNTotal AFCON Qualifiers results from last week??6-0????3-0????0-1????4-0????1-2????1-2????1-0????3-0????1-0????3-0??Uganda hammers LesothoOkwi – PHOTO KCCA MEDIAA double from Tanzanian-based striker Emma Okwi gave Uganda Cranes an emphatic victory over visiting Lesotho ‘The Crocodiles’ at the weekend.Saturday’s victory at Mandela Stadium, Namboole sees Uganda go three points clear in their group. This is the first home victory in the the qualifiers for new coach Sebastien Desabre.Okwi struck in the 10th and 63rd minute, with Faruku Miya securing the second. The two sides meet on Tuesday, and another win will virtually secure a place in next year’s Nations Cup final.Nearest challengers Tanzania were humiliated yesterday by Cape Verde.Uganda Cranes proudly donned the newly designed jersey, manufactured by kits company Mafro for the first time. Share on: WhatsApp At BamakoMali 0 Burundi 0StandingsMali 3 2 1 0 5 1 7Burundi 3 1 2 0 4 1 5Gabon 3 1 1 1 5 3 4S. Sudan 3 0 0 3 0 9 0FixturesTuesday: Burundi v Mali, South Sudan v GabonGroup DAt LomeTogo 1 (Denkey 84) Gambia 1 (Ceesay 7)At Blida, AlgeriaAlgeria 2 (Bensebaini 21, Bounedjah 75) Benin 0StandingsAlgeria 3 2 1 0 4 1 7Benin 3 1 1 1 1 2 4Gambia 3 0 2 1 2 3 2Togo 3 0 2 1 1 2 2FixturesTuesday: Benin v Algeria, Gambia v TogoGroup HAt ConakryGuinea 2 (Kamano 36-pen, Cisse 73) Rwanda 0At Bouake, Ivory CoastIvory Coast 4 (Kodjia 25, Bailly 52, Doukoure 57, Cornet 74) Central African Republic 0StandingsGuinea 3 3 0 0 6 2 9I. Coast 3 2 0 1 8 4 6C.A.R. 3 1 0 2 2 6 3Rwanda 3 0 0 3 2 6 0FixturesTuesday: Rwanda v Guinea, C.A.R. v Ivory CoastGroup IAt LuandaAngola 4 (Da Costa 12-pen, 16, Campos 52, Gelson 80) Mauritania 1 (Hacen 3)StandingsAngola 3 2 0 1 6 4 6Mauritania 3 2 0 1 4 4 6B. Faso 2 1 0 1 3 3 3Botswana 2 0 0 2 0 2 0FixturesSaturday: Burkina Faso v BotswanaTuesday: Mauritania v Angola, Botswana v Burkina FasoGroup JAt CairoEgypt 4 (Elmohamady 4, Warda 10, Hassan 29, Salah 45) eSwatini (formerly Swaziland) 1 (Gamedze 85)StandingsTunisia 2 2 0 0 3 0 6Egypt 3 2 0 1 10 2 6eSwatini 3 0 1 2 1 6 1Niger 2 0 1 1 0 6 1FixturesSaturday: Tunisia v NigerTuesday: eSwatini v Egypt, Niger v Tunisia Note: group winners and runners-up secure places at finals except for Group B, where 2019 Cup of Nations hosts Cameroon and the highest placed of the other three teams qualify
Officials in Virginia are reporting that at least three people have overdosed due to the new disturbing trend of using wasp spray as a method to get high.Though it is unclear when the trend exactly started, authorities are expressing concerns after not only seeing it on the streets but also due to reports of stores selling cans of the chemical mixture at elevated rates.“We’re seeing this here on the streets in Boone County,” Sgt. Charles Sutphin said. “People are making a synthetic type methamphetamine out of wasp spray.”Officials say that it sometimes takes one, sometimes three hits of the stray for the body to develop an allergic and potentially fatal reaction to the chemicals.“It’s a cheap fix, and you don’t know what their overall result of their usage of this is going to be”Sutphin said.While the trend continues to grow in the county officials also reported that they do not have an exact fix to reverse the effects of the chemical compound.State Police in Boone County are now working with medical and poison control centers to determine the best possible treatment for those who ingest the chemical mixture.Once a solution is made, officials plan to distribute the antidote to authorities to potentially save the life of others just incase the trend continues to spread.
Ten women golfers from the South region are one step closer to playing with a star of the European Tour after qualifying for the national final of Bridgestone’s Chase Your Dream Trophy, run in partnership with England Golf. They came through the regional qualifier at Muswell Hill Golf Club, Middlesex, where Diana Wallace of Haste Hill, Middlesex (pictured), led the way on countback with a net score of 75 She now goes forward to the final in England Golf Week at Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, in August, alongside Lily Lian (Grims Dyke, Middlesex), Nikki Slatter (Drift, Surrey), Catherine Ellis (Kingswood, Surrey), Lydia Hoare (Redlibbets, Kent), Tracey Beagley (Camberley Heath, Surrey), Marlise Zannetti (Bramley, Surrey), Sally Drawbridge (Highwoods, Sussex) Kathryn Naylor (Windlesham, Surrey,) Deirdre Randall (Hartley Wintney, Hampshire) They’ll be joined by qualifiers from five other regional finals and the overall winner will be England’s female Handicap Golfer of the Year. The top nine players in the field will play in the pro-am of the Bridgestone Challenge, the English leg of The Challenge Tour, at Luton Hoo on 6 September. They’ll be joined by the top nine players from the companion men’s championship, making up a total of six teams in the pro-am. The most successful of these teams will go on to the pro-am of the British Masters, supported by Sky Sports, at Close House in Northumberland later in the same month, playing with a star of The European Tour. The Bridgestone Chase your Dream Trophy is an annual event open to members of England Golf’s 1,900 affiliated clubs and features separate competitions for men and women. Players can already register their interest in the 2018 Chase Your Dream Trophy by clicking here. Entries will open in the autumn to players who have been successful in 2017 club competitions and are eligible to enter the regional finals. Last season, England Golf and Bridgestone worked together to run a similar event called the Driveguard Trophy for club golfers. It made a dream come true for South West players Zack Rosen, Carl Broomfield and Peter Carr. The trio eventually found themselves as guests of Bridgestone at the British Masters supported by Sky Sports, playing alongside 2010 US Open winner Graeme McDowell. Click here for full scores from the regional final 1 Jun 2017 South region golfers are chasing their dream
In this Oct. 1, 2013, photo, New York Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez arrives at the offices of Major League Baseball in New York, for his grievance hearing. (AP Photo/David Karp, File)NEW YORK (AP) — Alex Rodriguez benched himself at his own grievance hearing.The New York Yankees star walked out in the middle of a session Wednesday, furious arbitrator Fredric Horowitz refused to order baseball Commissioner Bud Selig to testify. The move, followed by angry statements accusing Selig of bias and the entire arbitration process of flaws, appeared to be a prelude to a lawsuit challenging whatever ruling Horowitz makes on A-Rod’s 211-game suspension.Horowitz was in the midst of the third week of hearings on the grievance filed by the players’ association to overturn the penalty given to the three-time AL MVP by Major League Baseball in August for alleged violations of the sport’s drug agreement and labor contract.“I lost my mind. I banged a table and kicked a briefcase and slammed out of the room,” Rodriguez said during a 40-minute interview on WFAN radio. “I probably overreacted, but it came from the heart.”Rodriguez has not testified in the grievance and said he had been warned that repeating his denials of wrongdoing on the stand could result in attempts at additional discipline by MLB.MLB argued that it could decide what witnesses it wanted to present to justify the discipline, since the penalty must meet a “just cause” standard. The league said Chief Operating Officer Rob Manfred spoke to reasoning behind the discipline during his six hours of testimony.Rodriguez and the union asked Horowitz to compel Selig to testify. After the arbitrator refused, Rodriguez uttered a profanity at Manfred just before leaving the hearing room at MLB’s office, two people familiar with the proceedings said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because what takes place at the hearing is supposed to be confidential.“In the entire history of the Joint Drug Agreement, the commissioner has not testified in a single case,” the commissioner’s office said in a statement. “Major League Baseball has the burden of proof in this matter. MLB selected Rob Manfred as its witness to explain the penalty imposed in this case. Mr. Rodriguez and the players’ Association have no right to dictate how baseball’s case is to proceed any more than baseball has the right to dictate how their case proceeds. Today’s antics are an obvious attempt to justify Mr. Rodriguez’s continuing refusal to testify under oath.”The hearing continued for about two hours after Rodriguez left the room, one of the people said, and it is scheduled to resume Thursday morning.“We have put on evidence. We have more evidence to put on. We are evaluating our options,” said James McCarroll, a lawyer for Rodriguez who also spoke during the WFAN interview. “We haven’t said the case isn’t being completed. We haven’t said that the case isn’t complete.”Horowitz, chosen by management and the union as their independent arbitrator last year, has the discretion to eliminate the suspension or alter it. The statements by Rodriguez and McCarroll made it appear the 14-time All-Star intends to sue MLB and the union unless the penalty is eliminated.Rodriguez already has filed one suit against MLB and Selig, accusing them of a “witch hunt,” and another against the Yankees team physician and his hospital, alleging malpractice in the diagnosis and treatment of a hip injury.Manfred is technically part of a three-person arbitration panel that also includes union General Counsel David Prouty and is chaired by Horowitz“I’m done. I don’t have a chance,” Rodriguez said during the WFAN interview.He issued a statement earlier in the day attacking the procedures established in the agreements between MLB and the union.“I am disgusted with this abusive process, designed to ensure that the player fails,” Rodriguez said. “I have sat through 10 days of testimony by felons and liars, sitting quietly through every minute, trying to respect the league and the process.“This morning, after Bud Selig refused to come in and testify about his rationale for the unprecedented and totally baseless punishment he hit me with, the arbitrator selected by MLB and the players’ association refused to order Selig to come in and face me. The absurdity and injustice just became too much. I walked out and will not participate any further in this farce.”The players’ association was disappointed with Horowitz’s decision but was less confrontational than Rodriguez.“The MLBPA believes that every player has the right under our arbitration process to directly confront his accuser,” the union said in a statement. “We argued strenuously to the arbitrator in Alex’s case that the commissioner should be required to appear and testify. While we respectfully disagree with the arbitrator’s ruling, we will abide by it as we continue to vigorously challenge Alex’s suspension within the context of this hearing.”McCarroll blamed Horowitz for precluding evidence Rodriguez wanted to introduce and hinted of a court fight.“Whether the case is finally decided in this forum, created by Major League Baseball, Bud Selig’s forum, or another forum, nobody is throwing the case out,” he said.Rodriguez denied using performance-enhancing drugs or obstructing MLB’s investigation into the Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic. Rodriguez was the only one of the 14 players disciplined this summer to challenge his suspension.“Over time, the arbitration process in baseball has been amazingly pro player,” MLB spokesman Pat Courtney said. “It was that process which created free agency. It allowed Steve Howe to remain on the field despite numerous drug violations and resulted in the shortening of suspensions like John Rocker’s. The notion that this same process is not fair enough or good enough for Alex Rodriguez is ridiculous.”Rodriguez said he had hoped to testify Friday. MLB had insisted Rodriguez submit to an “investigatory interview” prior to his testimony, but he canceled his scheduled appearance last week, claiming illness. MLB agreed to waive its right to penalize him for testimony during an interview it might deem untruthful, one of the people said.“The system is wrong, and whether you’re in federal court or state court or in kangaroo court that we are today, players need protection,” Rodriguez said on WFAN. “The union has already told me that if I go on on Friday and they think I lied, they can give me say another 100 games, so now you’re to 311. So now we’ll appeal that. In the appeal process, I would say I didn’t do it, so now you’re up to 411, and this can go on for the next seven or eight years.”He repeatedly disparaged Selig, who has been in charge of baseball since 1992 and said in September he plans to retire in January 2015. Rodriguez said Selig wants him as “a trophy” to put “in his big mantel on his way out.”“My only message to the commissioner is, I know you don’t like New York, but come to New York and face the music. He hates my guts, there’s no question about it,” Rodriguez said. “One hundred percent it’s personal, and I think this is about his legacy, and it’s about my legacy, and he’s trying to destroy me.”Rodriguez said four years ago he used PEDs while with the Texas Rangers from 2001-03. He has denied using them since.He briefly discussed his relationship with Biogenesis head Anthony Bosch, who is cooperating with MLB’s investigation.”It was nutrition and it was weight loss,” Rodriguez said. “And Bosch wasn’t the only guy. I traveled the world to see doctors, cutting-edge stuff, but always between the parameters of Major League Baseball. And I have hundreds of e-mails that will be part of evidence which I can’t get into that backs me up 100 percent.”
The Liberian Government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has called on the Government of Turkey to open new air routes to Liberia as per the Agreement, which was signed between the two nations in May, 2013.The Assistant Minister for International Cooperation and Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dehpue Y. Zuo, said the air services of Turkey to Liberia will not only help to boost the economy of the country but alleviate the health crisis amidst the decline of the deadly Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) which has claimed the lives of well over 2,000 Liberians.The Assistant Minister made the assertion last Wednesday when the People and Government of Turkey through the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA), donated 156 boxes of medical and hygiene supplies to the fight against the Ebola, valued about US$60,000.Assistant Minister Zuo, in a brief comment, urged Turkey’s Consul General in Liberia, Mr. Lusinee F. Kamara, Sr., to convey the government’s message to the people and government of Turkey.“First, we just want say that the Liberian people are happy to have Turkey to identify with us at a time like this. We also want to remind Turkey that in May-2013, we signed some agreements. One of these we want to be implemented is the air services,” Mr. Zuo said. “On behalf of Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan, we believe that in times like these more flights are needed in the country.”Assistant Minister Zuo’s appeal stemmed from the issue of “empty promises of some Airways,” which promised to resume flights in Liberia after suspending flights to Ebola-hit West African nations of Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.Kenya Airways, British Airways, ASKY Airlines, Arik Air of Nigeria and Emirates Airlines suspended flights to Liberia, although some of those airlines later reversed their decisions.“If the people and government of Turkey can open air routes [to] Liberia, it would be a big accomplishment and maybe all other flights would resume operations in Liberia,” Assistant Minister Zuo said.It may be recalled that according a dispatch from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan at the head of a six-man Liberian delegation, concluded a weeklong visit to Turkey with the donation of twenty (20) buses to the Monrovia City Corporation (MCC) by the City of Istanbul, Turkey.Of the 20 buses, four will be given to the Liberia National Police (LNP) while one goes to the Paynesville City Corporation (PCC). A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) making the donation a reality was signed on Thursday, May 15, 2014 at a colorful ceremony held in Istanbul, Turkey.Additionally, the Turkish government has donated two ambulances to the Health Ministry and most recently 150 boxes of medical and hygiene supplies.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Two ailing football coaches were last Saturday told to take heart because their friends in the United States are thinking of them, “and want to ensure that you get medical treatment for their respective sufferings,” said ex NPA goal-getter, who has been appointed liaison officer of the Liberia Athletes Reunion, (LAR) Jonathan Armah Baxter.He visited the two ailing coaches in their respective residences in Monrovia.The first visit was at the Borough of New Kru Town in Monrovia where Baxter, on behalf of the Liberia Athletes Reunion of Reynoldsburg, Ohio, USA, told ‘Experience’ Sayon Davis, who has been suffering from stroke over the last three years, “I am here on behalf of your friends in the USA to see what can be done to get proper medication for your sickness.”He told Davis that news of his illness has reached his friends, who were former play-mates and team-mates and they want to provide him some initial assistance for him to get medical help. The initial amount that he has received, he said is meant only for him to seek medical assistance.Baxter told him that his visit was to identify a health facility to let him begin treatment this Wednesday.“I am glad that my friends in the USA never forgot me and I’m grateful for their remembrance,” Davis responded. Davis has limited use of his legs. He finds it extremely difficult to move from one place to another but he said he is hopeful that with support from those who cared, God could work miracles in his life.Baxter concluded an arrangement with Mr. Isaac Wreh, who has been a pillar of support and who described his role as a protocol officer, to Mr. Davis to identify a health center, possibly on Bushrod Island.Baxter’s second visit was at the Block 13 Community near the ELWA Market where Mr. Joker Wreaker was met with his wife and representatives of Block 13, including its chairman Warcee Gbogba.Chairman Gbogba explained that the community provides moral and material to support to “Coach Joker because we do it to identify with him.”Joker said his problem is about his left arm that he has limited use of, through what he said is ‘gowa’ on his foot that needs to heal.Baxter agreed that the ELWA Hospital could be the first option for Mr. Wreaker and by Wednesday, a formal visit will be done to get him started.The Liberia Athletes Reunion is headed ex Invincible Eleven player Ahmadu Sarnor as its chairman. Members include former Liberian athletes domiciling in the United States, Canada and Europe. The membership includes both former basketballers and footballers.The organization invites Liberian athletes in different disciplines to its yearly reunion, two of which were held in the United States. It intends to work with all organizations that represent former national team players. The Former National Team Players Association, which is headed by Mr. Washington Blay is set to hold discussions with LAR liaison officer Baxter to be able to work with the LAR in its future programs in Liberia.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The rescheduled Mothers Day Rotary Run is a go this Sunday at the Surerus Fields in Fort St. John.Back on May 6th, event organisers announced that they would postpone the walk, which was previously scheduled for Mother’s Day, May 14th due to the wildfire situation that had escalated at the time, as well as the decrease in regional air quality.The Rotary Club will be donating $2 from every entry to Fort St. John Women’s Resource Society, as well as the net proceeds from the event. The Fort St. John Women’s Resource Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing valuable services and promoting the betterment of all women’s lives.- Advertisement -Participants can pick up their run packages at Ernies Sports Experts in the Totem Mall on Saturday between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Registration happens on Sunday morning from 8:30 to 9:30. The 10 kilometre run begins at 10:00 a.m., with the 5 km run fifteen minutes later. The 1 km Kids Dash starts at 11:15 a.m., followed by the Prize Presentations and a Rotary-sponsored pancake breakfast.
0Shares0000Iceland coach Heimir Hallgrimsson nearly lost a laptop containing 20 years work © AFP / Jonathan NACKSTRANDGELENDZHIK, Russian Federation, Jun 10 – Iceland needed police help to keep their World Cup plans on track after coach Heimir Hallgrimsson put his bag on the wrong bus in a comical start to their debut campaign.Hallgrimsson’s bag was on a bus headed for northern Iceland rather than the team coach bound for the airport on Saturday, a slip that delayed the group’s departure by half an hour while the item was recovered. “It was good for the guys that they can laugh at me,” Hallgrimsson told AFP on Sunday after the team’s first World Cup training session close to the city of Gelendzhik on Russia’s sunny Black Sea coast.“Hopefully it’s the only mistake of the tournament.”Assistant coach Helgi Kolvidsson said the bag contained a computer that had “20 years of work on it”.“We had to get the police to stop the bus while Heimir bought us a round of coffee at the airport,” he added.The Nordic side embarked on a fairytale run at Euro 2016, peaking with an astonishing 2-1 win against England as they came from a goal down to condemn Roy Hodgson’s team to a humiliating last-16 exit.Iceland, who shone at Euro 2016, are making their World Cup debut © AFP / Jonathan NACKSTRANDIn Russia they face another daunting challenge, with an opening match on June 16 against 2014 World Cup runners-up Argentina. Croatia and Nigeria are their other group-stage opponents.Hallgrimsson said the experience gained at Euro 2016 would help Iceland, who face pressure from fans at home who want to taste success in their first ever World Cup appearance.“We have a clue now about what we are getting into,” he said. “We are not as lost in the air as we were before the Euros. Hopefully we can surprise Argentina and maybe other teams too,” he said.Iceland staff said Everton midfielder and team talisman Gylfi Sigurdsson has recovered from a knee injury and is “ready” to face Lionel Messi’s men.But team captain Aron Gunnarsson did not take a full part in Sunday’s session, held in temperatures nearing 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit) in front of several hundred local people.The bearded Cardiff City midfielder’s knee injury sustained in April is an “injury concern” for the opening match, according to former Iceland international Gudni Bergsson.“We are hoping that he will be fit on the day, but we will see about that,” he said.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
By Phindi MadunaAs the official custodian of the country’s Nation Brand, Brand South Africa was pleased to partner with the Abantu Book Festival for the second year in a row. The organisation consistently promotes African youth development and advocates for the culture of reading, writing and literacy.The four-day celebration of African arts and culture which took place from 5 to 8 December this year, goes a long way in showcasing the vibrant township of Soweto to South Africans and people the world over. What started off as a mainly continental gathering has now developed to become an internationally supported and much anticipated get-together. There is no better place than the historic location of Soweto to redress the effects of the apartheid system that displaced spaces occupied by black people. In the post-apartheid era, education is at the heart of nation building. Education has proven to be instrumental in shifting this displacement and mind-sets.Once again, Brand South Africa partnered on the Creative Writing Workshop Masterclass. This is an effort to mentor writers with skills and competencies to share their stories with the world. This is an important educational interaction and exchange of information for aspiring writers who may otherwise not get the opportunity to engage with seasoned authors.Mohale Mashigo, the convenor of this year’s workshop, is one such seasoned author whose critically acclaimed debut novel ‘The Yearning’ brought much needed original subject matter to the South African literary scene in 2016. It is also noteworthy that Mohale is an all-round creative – a singer, songwriter and poet. Brand South Africa urged the participants to take the opportunity to learn and draw inspiration from her.“To Thando Mgqolozana and his team of creatives, you exemplify youth who have emerged as a creative and constructive force that can find solutions to South Africa’s social, economic and political challenges.” Said Thulisile Manzini, Brand South Africa’s Acting Chief Executive Officer. About Brand South AfricaBrand South Africa is the official marketing agency of South Africa, with a mandate to build the country’s brand reputation, in order to improve its global competitiveness. Its aim is also to build pride and patriotism among South Africans, in order to contribute to social cohesion and nation brand ambassadorship.About Play Your PartPlay Your Part is a nationwide programme created to inspire, empower and celebrate active citizenship in South Africa. It aims to lift the spirit of our nation by inspiring all South Africans to contribute to positive change, become involved and start doing. A nation of people who care deeply for one another and the environment in which they live is good for everyone.Play Your Part is aimed at all South Africans – from corporates and individuals, NGOs and government, churches and schools, from the young to the not-so-young. It aims to encourage South Africans to use some of their time, money, skills or goods to contribute to a better future for all.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.