Gemma Arterton is returning to the West End! After an acclaimed run at Shakespeare’s Globe, Jessica Swale’s new play Nell Gwynn, directed by Christopher Luscombe, will play the Apollo Theatre from February 4, 2016. Starring Arterton in the title role, opening night is scheduled for February 12.Arterton was most recently in the West End in Made in Dagenham; additional stage credits include The Duchess of Malfi, The Little Dog Laughed, The Master Builder and Love’s Labour’s Lost. On screen she has been seen in Quantum of Solace, The Voices, Gemma Bovery, Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, Song for Marion, Byzantium, Runner, Runner, A Turtle’s Tale: Sammy’s adventue, Tamara Drewe, Clash of the Titans, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, St Trinian’s and Tess of the D’Urbevilles.It is 1660. The Puritans have run away with their drab grey tails between their legs. Charles II has exploded onto the scene with a love of all things loud, French and sexy. And at Drury Lane, a young Nell Gwynn (Arterton) is selling oranges for sixpence. Little does she know who’s watching. The play charts the rise of an unlikely heroine, from her roots in Coal Yard Alley to her success as Britain’s most celebrated actress, and her hard-won place in the heart of the King. But at a time when women are second-class citizens, can her charm and spirit protect her from the dangers of the court? And at what cost?The limited engagement will run through April 30. View Comments
GARY Primo of Fruta Conquerors Football Club netted the first helmet-trick on day three of the fourth edition of the East Bank Football Association (EBFA) Under-11 League.The league is sponsored by USA-based Guyanese, Ralph Green, and continued yesterday at the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) National Training Centre, Providence, East Bank Demerara. Primo scored all four goals in his team’s 4-0 win over Eagles Football Club of Stewartville, West Coast Demerara. Conquerors rebounded in style after going down to Timehri Panthers in their first match, to blank their opponents. Primo was on target in the 1st, 7th, 13th and 23rd minutes for his team.Five of yesterday’s six matches produced positive results, the other producing a draw between defending champions Timehri Panthers Football Club and Samatta Point/Kaneville, who clawed their way back twice, thanks to a double from Emanuel Francois.Jadon Tasha, who also netted both goals for Timehri Panthers, had given them the lead in the 6th minute but their celebration was short-lived as Francois responded in like manner one minute later to level the score at 1-1. Tasha restored his side’s one-goal cushion in the 13th minute and they had looked on course for a win but Francois had other ideas as his successful free kick in the 27th minute ensured his team took an equal share of the points.Vurlon Mills Academy have consolidated their position at the top of the points table in Group A with their third win in as many matches, a hard-fought 1-0 win over a game Diamond United team. Breaking the deadlock after consistent offensive plays was Romario La Rose in the 27th minute; it was Diamond United’s first loss in the league.Grove Hi Tech took their first win via a 3-0 score line over Swan Football Club. Daniel Barton in the 14th minute, Akeem Evans from the penalty spot in the 21st minute and Rayfield Hillman in the 24th minute were the players finding the back of the nets.Agricola Red Triangle thumped Friendship All Stars 4-0 through goals from Lucas Fintenallas in the 2nd minute, Kedan Bacchus (8th), Brandon Narine (16th) and Jonathan Andries (21st) all inking their names on the score sheet.Jaheam Lewis’ 25th minute strike was the difference between his team Riddim Squad and Kuru Kururu Warriors – the latter’s two-match winning streak being halted. It was Riddim Squad’s first win of the league.The top two teams from each group after group play will earn the right to move on to the semifinals.
By Frederick HalleyREGAL made a clean sweep of all the major prizes when the presentation for the third edition of the Prime Minister T20 Softball Cup took place at the Everest Cricket Club ground, Camp Road, Georgetown on Sunday night following the completion of the tournament.Legends MVP Mahendra Hardyial poses with the Hero motorcycle with Prime Minister (acting) Khemraj Ramjattan and a representative from Rose Ramdehol.After winning both the inaugural Legends Over-50 and Masters Over-45 with victories over New York President’s XI and Mike’s Wellman respectively, Regal were already assured of $800,000; $500,000 from the former and another $300,000 from the latter.Runners-up New York President’s XI and Mike’s Wellman took home $100-000 each. All the teams were also recipients of trophies while the players of the winning sides got medals.In addition, all three Most Valuable Players (MVPs) were members of Regal: Skipper Mahendra Hardyal in the Legends category, Ramesh Deonarine (Masters) and Sachin Singh (Open). Hardyal “rode” away with the Hero motorcycle, compliments of Rose Ramdehol, while Deonarine and Singh collected television sets, donated by Regal Stationery and Office Supplies. All the MVPs also received bats from Hafeez Ali, owner of Regal.The man-of-the-match for both the Legends and Masters categories went to Regal’s Veerapen Moonsammy and Deonarine respectively; their awards being $10,000 and a trophy each.The tournament, which saw three days of action-packed and entertaining cricket, however, suffered a setback with the organisers forced to abandon the Open final. Set to be played under floodlights for the first time, the lights proved inadequate with the umpires complaining that they weren’t able to see.Open MVP Sachin Singh collects his prize (a TV) from Prime Minister (acting) Khemraj Ramjattan.Following a few stoppages, which started when the women’s feature game was in progress, the organisers made valiant efforts to ensure the Open game could be completed but, after it eventually started, some of the lights malfunctioned. At that stage, SVC Grill Masters, who were asked to take first strike, were 57 without loss in the seventh over.According to an official from the Georgetown Softball Cricket League (GSCL), organisers of the tournament, the entity intends to examine the possibility of ensuring all matches are completed during daylight while still maintaining all three categories in the prestigious tournament.At the presentation ceremony, both Prime Minister (acting) Khemraj Ramjattan and GSCL president, Ian John, apologised to the players and spectators for the hiccup.Ramjattan assured the organisers that government will continue its support for the tournament and commended them for the introduction of a women’s game. He described the tournament as being “wonderful” while congratulating the respective winners and participating teams.John also acknowledged that the tournament was a success while acknowledging the mishap with the lights. He lauded the participation of the 26 teams while extolling the winners for their sterling efforts.
MORE: Updated 2020 NASCAR Cup Series scheduleAs for pit stall selection for the NASCAR Cup Series races being run without qualifying, it is ordered based on finishing positions from the series’ previous points race, followed by new entries in order of points. That means Brad Keselowski, the winner of last week’s race at New Hampshire, will have the first stall at Michigan.Below is the starting lineup for Saturday’s NASCAR race at Michigan and how it was set.Who won the pole for the NASCAR race at Michigan?The driver who won the first of two races at Michigan last year, Joey Logano, will start on the pole for the first race at Michigan this year. He’ll be joined on the front row by Denny Hamlin.Logano, though, likely will get more help at the start of the race since three Fords are next in the starting order, with Kevin Harvick lining up third, Aric Almirola starting fourth and Brad Keselowski rolling off fifth.Below is the protocol for how the Cup Series field was set at Michigan:Positions 1-12: Random draw from charter teams in those positions in owner pointsPositions 13-24: Random draw from charter teams in those positions in owner pointsPositions 25-36: Random draw from charter teams in those positions in owner pointsPositions 37-40: Open teams in order of owners points NASCAR starting lineup at MichiganSaturday’s Michigan race is the last that will use the old protocol for setting lineups without qualifying sessions this season, as NASCAR is moving to a new formula beginning with the Daytona road course race Aug. 16. The exceptions will be the second legs of doubleheaders like Sunday’s race at Michigan, for which the field will be set by the results of the first leg with the top 20 finishers inverted.The new procedure will replace the random-draw element with a performance-based formula with three metrics — finishing position from the previous race (weighted 50 percent), ranking in team owner points standings (35 percent) and fastest lap from the previous race (15 percent).As for the starting lineup for Saturday’s NASCAR race at Michigan, the draw for positions took place Thursday. Below are the results:Pos.DriverCar No.Team1Joey Logano22Team Penske2Denny Hamlin11Joe Gibbs Racing3Kevin Harvick4Stewart-Haas Racing4Aric Almirola10Stewart-Haas Racing5Brad Keselowski2Team Penske6Alex Bowman88Hendrick Motorsports7Kyle Busch18Joe Gibbs Racing8Chase Elliott9Hendrick Motorsports9Clint Bowyer14Stewart-Haas Racing10Kurt Busch1Chip Ganassi Racing11Ryan Blaney12Team Penske12Martin Truex Jr.19Joe Gibbs Racing13Ryan Newman6Roush Fenway Racing14Tyler Reddick8Richard Childress Racing15Matt DiBenedetto21Wood Brothers Racing16Cole Custer41Stewart-Haas Racing17Jimmie Johnson48Hendrick Motorsports18Austin Dillon3Richard Childress Racing19William Byron24Hendrick Motorsports20Matt Kenseth42Chip Ganassi Racing21Michael McDowell34Front Row Motorsports22Chris Buescher17Roush Fenway Racing23Erik Jones20Joe Gibbs Racing24Bubba Wallace43Richard Petty Motorsports25Quin Houff00StarCom Racing26JJ Yeley27Rick Ware Racing27Brennan Poole15Premium Motorsports28James Davison51Petty Ware Raicng29Christopher Bell95Leavine Family Racing30Reed Sorenson74Spire Motorsports31John Hunter Nemechek38Front Row Motorsports32Ricky Stenhouse Jr.47JTG Daugherty Racing33Garrett Smithley53Rick Ware Racing34Ty Dillon13Germain Racing35Ryan Preece37JTG Daugherty Racing36Corey LaJoie32Go Fas Racing37Daniel Suarez96Gaunt Brothers Racing38Timmy Hill66Motorsports Business Management39Joey Gase7Tommy Baldwin Racing The starting lineup and pole for Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway, the first of a doubleheader this weekend, were set by the procedure that has determined the starting order for almost all Cup Series races in 2020 that have run without prior qualifying sessions amid the coronavirus pandemic.The starting grid for Saturday’s race at Michigan, scheduled to start at 4 p.m. ET and broadcast live on NBCSN, features four Fords in the top five positions as a result of the procedure that utilizes a combination of points standings and a random draw to set the lineup.
N SrinivasanAfter days of suspense, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced on Sunday that this year’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) generally held by the last week of September was postponed.One of the reasons given for the delay is the unsigned annual accounts of the BCCI. But Board insiders and retired Supreme Court judge A.K. Patnaik have called it a sham.According to the BCCI constitution, the president signs the balance sheet ahead of the AGM. But with the Supreme Court asking N Srinivasan to stay away from office till the probe into the spot-fixing fiasco in IPL-6 is completed, the BCCI has cited absence of a president as the major reason behind the delay in holding the AGM.Shivlal Yadav (left) & Sanjay Patel have looked after BCCI’s daily functioning after N. Srinivasan was asked to step aside.Even though the court appointed Shivlal Yadav as interim president, the pro-Srinivasan camp has argued there is no provision for an interim president. That has irked quite a few BCCI members.A senior official said it was shocking how members in the Srinivasan camp were using the opportunity to give the president-inexile some breathing space.”All this is nothing but a charade. The BCCI is registered under the Tamil Nadu Societies Registration Act. According to its clauses, under exceptional circumstances, not only the secretary or treasurer, but even a vice-president can sign the final accounts and ensure the AGM is held on time. The pro-Srinivasan camp is using every option available to ensure that he gets more time and in all likelihood a third term as BCCI president,” official added.advertisement”Also, the Supreme Court, the highest authority, had appointed Yadav to fulfill duties of the president. So there is no reason he can’t sign the accounts. He has all the powers that the president is vested with and nobody can challenge him,” he said.The man responsible for Srinivasan’s exile Justice Patnaik is also puzzled as to why Yadav is not fulfilling the duties of the president.”Why can’t the AGM be held on time in the absence of Srinivasan? Interim president Shivlal Yadav can sign the account papers and can call for the AGM now. This is if they want,” he said.Aditya Verma, secretary of the unrecognised Cricket Association of Bihar has vowed to file a case within this week to request the court to interfere and ensure that Srinivasan and his men don’t damage the BCCI’s image any further.”In the last 86 years, never has there been a delay in the AGM. Even in 2005, the AGM took place on time, even though the election was stalled as per court directives. I see no reason for Yadav not signing the accounts and removing the hurdles. If he has issues, Sanjay Patel, secretary or Anirudh Chaudhry, treasurer can sign the documents.”I am moving court and will request them to send an observer to oversee the election procedure. Also, I would like the court to look into the financial irregularities in the BCCI, Tamil Nadu Cricket Association and Chennai Super Kings in the recent past during Srinivasan’s tenure,” he said.Patel announced on Sunday that due to certain glitches, the general belief was that the BCCI should hold a Working Committee (WC) meeting on September 26 before deciding the next course of action. In that case, with the rules demanding a three-week gap between a Working Committee meeting and the AGM, there is no way the annual meeting can be held before October.
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Norwich defender Timm Klose: Booze and smoking almost blew careerby Paul Vegas12 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveNorwich City defender Timm Klose admits he almost blew his chance of a pro career due to his lifestyle as a teenager.Klose says moving to Germany transformed his life.He recalled to his club’s TV channel: “When I was 13 I still didn’t know what I would do in my life and even though I came from a very healthy family, I encountered several problems. “I had many older friends who drank and smoked and I, despite being a bad idea, decided to follow them. I clearly dreamed of becoming a professional footballer and in those years I played in the Basel youth teams, but I also spent most of my time between alcohol and smoking. “I lived a parallel reality, I didn’t really understand what was happening to me. One night I almost had a heart attack lying on a bench in a park near the lake. I don’t remember where I was exactly. The next morning alone and it was a shock, only later, when I reached the age of 16, did I meet my wife and move to Nuremberg to find support of a mental coach that I still hear from today.”
HALIFAX – Ottawa used the platform of a G7 ministers meeting Thursday to announce it will gradually eliminate most plastic waste from government operations, as corporate leaders spoke of how they’re eager to turn waste into profitable material.Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said at the Halifax gathering that the federal government will ditch unnecessary plastics throughout its operations.“We’re going to eliminate unnecessary single-use plastics throughout government operations. So this includes straws, cutlery, packaging, cups, bottles,” McKenna said.She said Ottawa aims to collect, reuse or recycle at least 75 per cent of its plastic waste by 2030.Meanwhile, the CEOs of a number of large companies said they’ll sign the ocean plastics charter that Canada has been promoting.The Canadian-led plastic charter’s provisions call for national governments to set standards for increasing the reuse and recycling of plastics rather than trashing them.It also calls for businesses to take responsibility for production methods that eliminate waste — an approach referred to as “extended producer responsibility.”Five of the seven G7 nations and the European Union signed on to the charter at the recent G7 leaders summit in Charlevoix, but the United States and Japan still haven’t endorsed it.McKenna announced Thursday that Jamaica, Kenya, the Marshall Islands, and Norway are signing on to the plastics charter.Also Thursday, a group of companies and non-government groups announced a coalition dedicated to finding ways to use plastic rather than throwing it away.Unilever Canada, Walmart Canada, Ikea Canada and Loblaw were among firms joining with non-governmental groups to support the Circular Economy Leadership Coalition. The term circular economy refers to manufacturing processes that involves recycled materials and waste is eliminated or reused elsewhere.Some firms, including Ikea, have already promised to eliminate single-use plastic products from its shelves by 2020, including straws, plates, cups, freezer bags, garbage bags and plastic-coated paper plates and cups.There have been a wide array of corporate anti-plastic pledges in recent months: hotels including the Marriott and Holiday Inn Express have dumped their complimentary tiny shampoo and conditioner bottles in favour of larger containers that are attached to the bathroom wall.Montreal became the largest Canadian municipality to ban single-use plastic bags this week, and Prince Edward Island is gearing up to become to the first province to do the same.Paul Polman, the chief executive of Dutch-British multinational Unilever — a massive consumer products firm — attended the morning session of the G7 meeting and told the ministers those that haven’t signed on are falling behind a world trend led by consumers.He referred to the Canadian-led ocean plastics charter as a starting point for all nations to commit to.“You’ve put a stake in the ground of what the minimum is that the whole world should adhere to, even though I realize there are some countries still hesitating to sign,” he said.“I can only tell you, you’re out of line of where the consumers are.”He said people around the world want to help end the flow of plastic into the oceans, in part because of powerful images of sea life that is dying due to swallowing plastic waste being dumped into water.“It’s drastically changing the consumer’s perspective,” he said.McKenna also said during her news conference that Ottawa is starting a $12 million fund for innovations in plastics aimed at finding ways to avoid the material entering the waste stream.However, McKenna has said the Liberal government’s wider approach to setting out a national strategy to reduce plastic waste and encourage reuse is still being worked out, as she plans to meet with provincial counterparts.Mark Butler, the director of Halifax-based Ecology Action Centre, said while the voluntary commitments of companies and the international charters are useful, stronger legislation is needed to eliminate throwaway plastics and commit companies to recycling and reuse.“Voluntary is great, but we need mandatory,” he said. “The basic approach is if it can’t be recycled, we shouldn’t be using it.”Butler also said there are still serious problems with the ocean plastics charter, including its use of terminology that would allow for plastic waste to be burned — thus contributing to greenhouse gases.The Canadian-led conference didn’t appear to convince a representative of U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration to consider signing the plastics charter.As he prepared to depart Halifax, Andrew Wheeler, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, said the United States intends to follow its own domestic plans to reduce plastic waste.Wheeler said most plastic waste comes from southeast Asia.“As I said in the meeting today after the press left, we have to be aware of the fact that 60 per cent of the plastic waste comes from five countries that are not represented by us,” he said in an interview.“The G7 needs to do a better job of outreach to those countries if we’re going to solve this problem internationally.”Masaharu Nakagawa, the Japanese minister of the environment, declined a request for an interview on why his country is not signing the plastics accord, but signalled the matter will be discussed further at the G20 meetings.He said in a speech earlier in the day that Japan is currently considering a domestic strategy referred to as the “plastic resource circulation strategy,” and this new strategy will include the points listed in the Ocean Plastic Charter and “aims to be even more ambitious.”Note to readers: This is a corrected story. Environment Minister Catherine McKenna incorrectly said the Seychelles had joined the plastics charter.
OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says maple syrup production fell by 21.7 per cent to 44.5 million litres in 2018, the lowest level in three years.Production was down in every syrup-producing province except Nova Scotia and Ontario, which saw output rise 9.4 per cent to 2.1 million litres, the most since 2011.Quebec produced 40.4 million litres, down 22.4 per cent from 2017 due to unusually late snow and cold, while New Brunswick output fell 34.5 per cent to 1.6 million litres.The total value of Canadian maple products decreased 22 per cent to $384.4 million, with the price of syrup remaining relatively unchanged at $39.24 per gallon.The Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers tapped its strategic reserves this year to avoid wild price swings or supply shortages.Quebec produces about 72 per cent of the world’s maple syrup, with the rest of Canada producing eight per cent and the United States producing 20 per cent.The Canadian Press
New Delhi: The Supreme Court Tuesday refused to consider BSP supremo Mayawati’s plea challenging the EC’s 48-hr campaign ban on her and expressed satisfaction over the poll body’s action against leaders making hate speeches. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi asked Mayawati’s counsel to file a separate appeal against the poll panel’s order. Taking note of the EC action, the court said it seems the poll body has “woken up” and barred various politicians from poll campaigning for varying hours. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The bench also comprising Justice Sanjiv Khanna made it clear that no further order was required for now. The Election Commission on Monday imposed a nationwide campaign ban on Adityanath for 72 hours and on Union Minister Maneka Gandhi and Mayawati for 48 hours from Tuesday for their “provocative” communal remarks, which it said had the “propensity to polarise the elections”. A 72-hour campaign ban has also been imposed on Samajwadi Party’s Azam Khan for his alleged “khaki underwear” jibe against actor-politician Jaya Prada, who is his rival BJP candidate in Rampur Lok Sabha seat. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday The bench was hearing a PIL filed by an NRI Yoga teacher based in Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), seeking a direction to the EC to take “strict action” against political parties if their spokespersons make remarks based on caste and religion in the media in the run up to general elections. The all-India ban on all four leaders — two from the ruling BJP and two from opposition parties — came into force from 6 am Tuesday. While Adityanath, Mayawati and Gandhi were found guilty of violating the model code, the EC said Khan not only violated the poll code, he also disregarded its November 2013 directive asking politicians to desist from “deeds or actions construed as being repugnant to the honour and dignity of women”. For the first time a pan-India ban has been imposed on politicians, while any restriction on a chief minister and a union minister is unprecedented. Mayawati alleged the order has been passed “under pressure” and it would be remembered as a “black day” in the EC’s history. She has faced action for appealing to Muslims to not vote for the Congress to avoid their anti-BJP votes getting divided. Her alliance partner and SP chief Akhilesh Yadav asked the EC whether it is capable to issue similar directives to the prime minister to stop him from asking for votes in name of the Army. The EC order to bar Adityanath and Mayawati came soon after the Supreme Court asked the poll watchdog about the action it has initiated against them. The apex court had on Monday expressed displeasure over the Election Commission not taking quick action against politicians for communal and hate speeches during the Lok Sabha campaigning and decided to examine the ambit of its power following submission that it was “toothless”. The bench had taken the cases of alleged communal speeches of Mayawati and Adityanath and asked the EC about the action taken so far against them while deciding to examine the statutory powers of poll panel to deal with the violation of model code of conduct (MCC). The EC’s counsel had said: “The power of the EC in this behalf is very limited. We can issue notice and seek reply but we cannot de-recognise a party or disqualify a candidate…we can only issue advisories and in case of a repeat offence, register a complaint.” Reacting sharply, the bench had said, “So you are basically saying you are toothless and powerless against hate speeches.” It had then said that besides sending a notice, an advisory and a criminal case can be filed only against such leader. “It is stated by the counsel appearing for the EC that the power of the ECI for violation of the Model Code of Conduct by making hate speeches on grounds of religion, caste etc is circumscribed to issuing of notice and upon consideration of the reply to issue advisories. “Only in case of repeated violation of the advisories, the EC has the power to file an FIR with the Police for initiation of criminal proceedings,” the bench had noted in the order. The apex court, on April 8, had issued notice to the Centre and the poll panel on the PIL seeking direction to take “strict action” against political parties if their spokespersons make remarks based on castes and religions in the media in the run up to general elections.
New Delhi: The National Commission for Women (NCW) has issued a show cause notice to Punjab DGP Dinkar Gupta and asked him to take action against police officers who reportedly refused to register a complaint of a rape survivor. Citing a media report, NCW member Soso Shaiza said the commission is seriously concerned about the “reported police apathy in the matter and negligence shown by the police despite the provision of zero FIR in the law”. The media report said the SHO bickered with the victim over jurisdiction of where the complaint must be registered. “Considering the gravity of the matter, it is requested that strict action be taken against erring officials and a detailed action taken report be sent to the Commission at an early date,” Shaiza said.
Beijing: Chinese President Xi Jinping said the cooperation agreements worth more than USD 64 billion were signed at a CEO conference during the 2nd Belt and Road Forum which concluded here on Saturday.A total of 283 items of practical outcomes were achieved during the preparatory process and the holding of the forum, Xi said in a statement before the media on Saturday after his roundtable meeting with 37 heads of state and governments who took part in the meeting. Also Read – Commercial vehicle sales to remain subdued in current fiscal: IcraEarlier in the day, Xi called for joint efforts of all parties to promote high-quality development of the Belt and Road (BRI) initiative at the leaders’ roundtable meeting of the forum. In his address at the roundtable meet, Xi said his trillion-dollar BRI initiative should benefit all around the world and deliver common development by following established international rules and norms. He again stressed that the BRI would focus on common development of all the participating countries and their people. Also Read – Ashok Leyland stock tanks over 5 pc as co plans to suspend production for up to 15 days”We must implement the principle of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits to see that all voices are heard, all reached their full potential and all stand to benefit,” the Chinese President said. The BRI must be open, clean and green and follow high standards, people centred sustainable approach, he said, adding that it should be aligned to the United Nations’ sustainable development agenda. “Align our cooperation with universally accepted rules, standards and best practices and pursue social and economic progress and environmental protection in a balanced way. The BRI should be beneficial to all and deliver common development,” Xi said. Those who attended the BRF meeting included Russian President Vladimir Putin, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and heads of several Asian, African and Latin American countries besides heads of the UN and the IMF. India and the US skipped the meeting. India, which boycotted the first BRF meeting held in 2017 over its objections to the USD 60 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) being laid through the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, skipped its second edition for the same reasons. The CPEC, which connects Gwadar Port in Pakistan’s Balochistan with China’s Xinjiang province, is the flagship project of the BRI. India has also been airing its concerns over the BRI financing, saying that connectivity initiatives must follow principles of financial responsibility to avoid projects that would create unsustainable debt burden for communities. This time the US has emerged as a fierce critic of the BRI, asserting that its predatory financing is leaving the smaller countries in heavy debt. The concerns grew louder after China acquired Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port for a 99-year lease as a debt swap. The heavy Chinese financing of the CPEC also raised concerns over Pakistan’s ability to pay back. China has clarified that less than 20 per cent of the CPEC projects are based on loans provided by it and the rest of the 80 per cent ventures are either directly invested by Beijing or used Chinese grants. The BRI was launched by President Xi when he came to power in 2013. It aims to link southeast Asia, central Asia, the Gulf region, Africa and Europe with a network of land and sea routes. China is doling out huge sums of money for infrastructure projects in countries from Asia to Africa and Europe, enhancing its global influence. In his speech at the opening ceremony of the 2nd BRF on Friday, Xi allayed fears that China is using the BRI as a geopolitical tool to attain superpower status. He said the BRI was “not an exclusive club”. “Everything should be done in a transparent way and we should have zero tolerance for corruption,” he said.
Photo illustration by Mark BatkeImagine not being able to say whatever you want on Twitter because one bad tweet will make headlines all over. That’s often the case for student athletes when it comes to social media, and it’s particularly true for Twitter.In 2009, Texas Tech University linebacker Marlon Williams decided not to keep his comments to himself when he tweeted about his coach being late to a team meeting.“Wondering why I’m still in this meeting room when the head coach can’t even be on time to his own meeting,” Williams tweeted.Williams’ tweet and account were deleted soon after.In 2011, then-Western Kentucky University and current Tennessee Titans running back Antonio Andrews had something to say to the fans of WKU.“One thing I can say bout #UKfans is they loyal. No matter how sorry they team is they always support them. Can’t say that bout #WKUfans smh,” Andrews tweeted.Andrews was sidelined the following game.Finally in 2012, Ohio State’s very own quarterback, Cardale Jones, then a freshman, made headlines for his controversial tweet about his opinion on attending classes and playing football.“Why should we have to go to class if we have came to play FOOTBALL, we ain’t come to play SCHOOL classes are pointless,” Jones tweeted.Shortly after, Jones’ tweet and his Twitter account were deleted, but the tweet was already captured by many.Student athletes become the face of their school whether they like it or not. They are obligated to represent their university in everything they do, including the tweets they create on Twitter. Any and everything they say will be judged by many.“It’s tough knowing that everything you do is watched pretty closely because I’m doing the same stuff I’ve always done. It’s just now people actually care what I do,” former Texas A&M quarterback and current Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel said to USA Today in January of 2013.Being a student athlete is not always easy. Yes, they might get the perks of having thousands of Twitter followers, but someone is always watching to make one simple tweet into headlines across the globe. Therefore, ask yourself, “Do I really wish to be Cardale Jones and have thousands of followers that watch my every move?” Some might say yes and some might say no, but I personally would rather stay as the average student whose tweets do not make headlines.
Ohio State redshirt junior Bo Jordan (center) celebrates after defeating Cornell’s Brian Realbuto (left) 11-7 to advance to his first NCAA Championship. Credit: Courtesy of OSU AthleticsST. LOUIS — After two days of wrestling, two Buckeye wrestlers remain alive in their hopes of winning an NCAA championship: junior Kyle Snyder and redshirt junior Bo Jordan.Snyder is making his third appearance in the NCAA finals having won one previously, while Bo Jordan is making his first appearance in the match.Both Buckeyes faced a large degree of difficulty to enter the finals. Jordan had to come from behind in the semifinals against the only opponent to hand him a loss this season – Cornell’s Brian Realbuto. Snyder is battling a rib injury, but it hasn’t seemed to slow down the reigning Olympic and world champion.To seal his victory in the 174 semifinals, Jordan employed a move reminiscent of a somersault to counter Realbuto in the closing seconds against Realbuto to tally a takedown and near fall points, giving him an 11-7 lead that would take him to the finals.Jordan will take on a familiar foe in the finals: Penn State’s Mark Hall. Jordan beat Hall 6-4 in overtime at the Big Ten Championships on March 5 to seal his title win.Jordan said he still remembers the move that earned him the win, but isn’t sure exactly how he did it.“Honestly, I don’t know,” Jordan said. “I knew he was going to go mixer when I came to my feet, so i was kind of expecting it. But, for whatever reason, I just landed on top, which was nice, and I was able to get back points out of it.”Snyder’s injury was apparent in his quarterfinals matchup against Penn State’s Michael Kroells, especially by Snyder’s lack of scoring in the third period of that match.However, battling Duke’s Jacob Kasper in the semifinals, the injury didn’t seem to bother Snyder.“I felt pretty good. I got shots after the 165 match,” Snyder said about his matchup with Kasper. “I felt it crunching a little bit. I could hear it. But I didn’t feel the pain because of the shots.”Kasper had called Snyder out earlier in the season, and that seemed to be at least partially on Snyder’s mind as he won 19-6.“I was excited to wrestle him because I heard about some of the stuff he said, seemed a little arrogant to me,” Snyder said. “And I was hoping he would back it up. But not too much.”Snyder will also face the same foe he took on at the Big Ten Championships: Wisconsin’s Connor Medbery. Snyder beat Medbery 7-5 on March 5, but Medbery was able to get a last second takedown to make the score close.As a team, the Buckeyes sit in second place with 89 points, behind only Penn State at 121.
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard has revealed how the job has taken a toll on him so much so that he is now trying to get back to normal life following the Scottish League winter break.Gerrard is now so immersed with the job that he says his mind is always on the next opponent or the formation to be played even while on a day off.Gerrard who joined the Ibrox team last summer says it is expedient that the players have some time to rest while he uses the opportunity to catch up with family.He told Daily Record:“The important thing is to switch off mentally. It has been full-on for us, with games smacking you in the face every three or four days.Owen reveals why Liverpool didn’t offer Gerrard a new contract Manuel R. Medina – September 6, 2019 According to Owen, the Reds wanted to sell Gerrard two years before he left the club and that’s why they didn’t offer him a contract renewal.“The fitness coach told me the other day that 80 percent of our games have had less than a three-day lead-in. That’s tough for the players.“Do I need to switch off as well? I’ll try.“But the thing that’s surprised me most about management at this level is how difficult it is to switch off. Even when you’re at home or on a day off, I’ve found it really hard.“As a player it was easy to switch off. I could do stuff with my friends, play golf or watch telly. It was like a switch.”