How Danny Ings’ stats compare to Mario Balotelli

first_imgIt was a “thanks, but no thanks, Moyesy” from Danny Ings, who appears now to have his heart set on joining Brendan Rodgers at Liverpool.This season the Burnley striker has been courted by the Reds, Tottenham and Real Sociedad manager David Moyes, but it is Anfield the 22-year-old has his heart set on, and he has a chance to impress on Merseyside when the Clarets travel their tonight.Rodgers has Rickie Lambert, Daniel Sturridge, Fabio Borini and Mario Balotelli as options up front, the latter of whom cost the club £16m in the summer.So how does he compare to Ings, who will be a free agent in the summer? 2 2 Will Danny Ings replace Mario Balotelli at Liverpool? Ings is a man in form at the minute and has scored five goals in his last nine games – is he who Liverpool need in their attack?last_img read more

Epic run to put smiles on faces

first_imgDavid Grier and fellow ultra-distance runner Braam Malherbe ran across the Southern African coastline in 2008. (Image: Cipla Mile for Smiles blog) Adventurer David Grier during training for the 2010 Madagascar Challenge. (Image: Cipla Mile for Smiles) MEDIA CONTACTS • Ros Walsh Media Liaison Cipla Miles for Smiles +27 31 275 9700 or +27 82 920 3398 [email protected] RELATED ARTICLES • South Africa reaches out to Haiti • South African leprosy survivors – no longer outcasts • Help for homeless children • The adventure starts hereBongani NkosiSouth African adventurer David Grier is braving torrential rain, extreme heat and blood-thirsty leeches in a world-first attempt to run the length of Madagascar during monsoon season. His motivation? To make a difference in the lives of children born with cleft lips and palates.Through this epic trek 50-year-old Grier is helping raise money for Operation Smile South Africa, an NGO which pays for affected children, and sometimes even adults, to have corrective surgery so they are able to smile.“This adventure is part of a commitment to make a difference in the lives of children in South Africa and the continent,” Grier said. “We will use the funds raised for children in South Africa and neighbouring countries.”The adventure, known as Madagascar Challenge 2010, is a continuation of the Cipla Miles for Smiles Challenge that saw Grier complete a 4 000km run across the Great Wall of China in 2006 with friend and fellow adventurer Braam Malherbe. The two adventurers also finished a 3 300km run along the Southern African coastline in 2008.But the Madagascar Challenge is by far the most difficult, the ultra long-distance runner said. It combines running, paddling and kite surfing – the latter two being new additions to Grier’s programme.He started his journey on 1 December in Nacala, on the north coast of Mozambique, and paddled 500km over 11 days to reach Majunga in northwest Madagascar. After this he travelled to the island’s southern tip to begin his quest.“I wanted to push the boundaries a bit to capture the imagination of the people following the event to prove that we can achieve what we set out to do,” Grier said of his decision to include paddling and kite surfing. The aim is to “bring awareness to the plight of these children so we can make a difference in their lives”.The public is being urged to make donations through the Miles for Smiles website. Presentations on Grier’s adventure will also be made to businesses in South Africa to generate further funds.More smiles for SAOperation Smile South Africa was set up just before Grier and Malherbe started their run in China in 2006, and has funded operations for more than 1 000 people since.Its first mission in Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal province, in November 2006 provided free reconstructive surgery for 57 disadvantaged children and adults. In March 2008 the organisation funded operations for 31 similarly affected people in Swaziland and, by May of the same year, it went to Madagascar to do the same.Braving leeches, swamps and cyclonesIt’s hasn’t been smooth sailing for Grier and his support crew in Madagascar. The first challenge was paddling across the ocean and being hit by storms and a tornado.Running solo, he has covered more than 800km, and is currently passing through mostly rain-drenched forest in central Madagascar. The run itself has not been straightforward, with Grier having to swim across bulging rivers to reach nearby villages to spend the night. The next morning he’s up again to hit the mountains.Of the 800km he’s run, Grier still has “double that to do and more”. Weather permitting, Grier runs more than 40km a day.It’s been raining heavily for seven days in the central villages he’s passing through at the moment. In the north, where he’s headed, there’s the threat of extreme heat and cyclones.“The island is so diverse, the weather changes all the time. Down south is desolate and up to 40 degrees Celsius. In the north it’s going to be hot and then I am going to hit the cyclones. It’s going to get hectic,” he said.Grier’s health was at risk during his earlier days on the island. He fell sick for a month while adjusting to Madagascar’s water and has already lost 8kg. “… Now it’s the leeches and tropical fever that have hit me.”He said he’s very exhausted at the moment and feels like the parasites’ bites are draining his energy.His cameraman and media liaison manager, Nick Heygate, is recovering after being infected by leech bites in the forest. Heygate, who has been severely affected over the past few days, has had to walk about 40km unassisted out of the mountains.Grier had to endure running through deep sand in the south, and now he’s wading through “knee-deep swamp areas and red mud that just never dries”.Although he’s supported by Heygate, Grier doesn’t have enough logistical help “due to the funding difficulty”. Heygate is being assisted by two Malagasy men who’ve provided transport for him through the forests.“This has turned out to be a mammoth solo trip,” Grier said.He hopes to complete the adventure in April and will kite-surf back to South Africa from the Indian Ocean island.Man of many talentsSo what does Grier, the father of four who missed his daughter’s birthday party in December and celebrated his in unknown territory last Saturday, long for back in South Africa?“Just sit and appreciate my family and thank them for what they have had to endure unselfishly in order for me to be given the privilege of going out and making a difference,” he said.He also missed his eldest daughter’s wedding in Austria and said he would have loved spending Christmas and New Year’s Day home. “I will miss my wedding anniversary as well.”Grier is a man of many talents: he’s a celebrity chef, motivational speaker, photographer and published author. He has successfully summited Mount Kilimanjaro and completed numerous ultra-marathons, including the acclaimed Two Oceans Marathon (56km) and Comrades Marathon (90km) in South Africa.last_img read more

Is enough being done to keep First Nations children safe in Thunder

first_imgWillow FiddlerAPTN National NewsCommunity members in Thunder Bay are asking whether officials are doing enough to keep First Nations young people safe.The question is being asked after the body of Tammy Keeash was found Sunday night.She is the fourth girl to have died while in care of the province since October.Now questions are being [email protected]last_img

Forget The Suns Goran Dragic Needs Teammates Who Will Give Him The

The Phoenix Suns are in a bit of a bind. The NBA’s trade deadline is 3 p.m. Thursday (Eastern time), so Suns general manager Ryan McDonough must quickly pursue trades that would send 2014 All-NBA guard — and potential free-agent-to-be1Goran Dragic has the option to extend his deal with Phoenix for the 2015-16 season at a price of $7.5 million, but he can also opt out in search of a longer-term contract. — Goran Dragic to a team he’s interested in for the long haul, lest Dragic walk away in the summer without Phoenix receiving any reimbursement. (Dragic reportedly told the Suns on Tuesday that he does not plan to re-sign with the club after the season.)How did things reach this point? Dragic was once looked to as the Suns’ franchise player.People close to the situation told USA Today’s Sam Amick that Dragic has chafed under the three-guard system created when the Suns executed a sign-and-trade deal for Isaiah Thomas last summer. Thomas was brought to Phoenix, in part, as insurance against the departure of Eric Bledsoe, whose restricted free agency hung over the team all summer. But the Suns found themselves with three top-flight (ball-dominant) guards once the Bledsoe drama was resolved in September. Naturally, sacrifices have been required: Dragic’s usage rate this season is the lowest it’s been since 2009-10, his second year in the NBA.The hope would be that, as a player bears less responsibility in his team’s offense, he would be freed up to perform with greater efficiency. This idea of a trade-off between usage rate and efficiency was advanced by Dean Oliver (the current Sacramento Kings director of player personnel and analytics), who called it the “skill curve” effect more than a decade ago. And it has been demonstrated empirically across the entire population of NBA players. However, the devil is always in the details, and those details are why Dragic’s wins above replacement (WAR) tally has fallen; it was 8.8 a season ago but is on pace for 3.72Pro-rated to 82 team games. this year.Although a general trade-off might hold for the average player, changes in a player’s efficiency also depend heavily on his teammates and overall style of play. When Dragic was at his best — he ranked as the NBA’s ninth-best guard by value over replacement player (VORP) between 2011-12 and 2013-14 — he had the ball in his hands a lot, penetrating and dishing. But a full season alongside Bledsoe (the duo only suited up for 38 games together in 2013-14) and the addition of Thomas have taken a toll on Dragic’s stats. His assist percentage is 19.5 percent this season, down from 28.1 percent a season ago and a high of 35.7 percent in 2012-13; his free-throw attempt rate is down to .191 from .381 last year; his true shooting percentage is down to .573 from .604 last season.Using the player-tracking numbers at NBA.com, we see that Dragic’s touches per 36 minutes are down to 67.3 from 80.1 last season, and his drives per 36 minutes are down to 7.8 from 9.8 a year ago. Perhaps most telling, Dragic is only creating 10.3 points per 36 minutes with his passing, down from 15.1 last season. And according to Synergy numbers, isolations and pick-and-roll plays went from composing 49.4 percent of Dragic’s offensive game a year ago to 34.2 percent this season. Although skill curve theory might predict an uptick in efficiency with such a change, the reality is that Dragic’s effectiveness has cratered on the plays that were once his bread-and-butter. In 2013-14, he ranked in Synergy’s 91st percentile on pick-and-rolls and isolations; this season he ranks in the 43rd percentile.In retrospect, there were signs that Dragic would need to adapt his playing style even if Thomas hadn’t joined the fold. Looking at his numbers with and without Bledsoe last season, Dragic’s usage rate, assist percentage, shooting efficiency and fouls drawn per possession were significantly higher when he wasn’t sharing the floor — and the ball — with Bledsoe. It was possible that some degree of regression in Dragic’s numbers was inevitable.(And for what it’s worth, Thomas is still working out his place in the Suns’ puzzle. His offensive box plus/minus and assist percentage are down from a year ago, although he’s retained his shooting efficiency and even improved his foul-drawing numbers.)An overlooked aspect of NBA perimeter play is whether a player can function with the ball in his hands or, conversely, whether he can adapt to contribute without constant touches. Most players’ skills are better suited to one category or the other, and a player will naturally be less effective when asked to play outside that role. Something to watch this week will be whether Dragic’s possible trade destinations would allow him to play on-ball the way the Suns did before this season, when he was at peak production. read more

The US Women Probably Werent Going To Win The Gold Anyway

The outcome didn’t reflect the run of play: The U.S. outshot Sweden 26 to 3 and completed more than twice as many passes. U.S. goalkeeper Hope Solo said after the match that the U.S. had played “a bunch of cowards,” a reference to Sweden’s defensive tactics. Swedish coach Pia Sundhage, who used to coach the U.S., responded, “It’s OK to be a coward if you win.”Even if the American women had escaped Friday’s shootout with a win, they’d have had their work cut out for them, with just a 36 percent chance of winning their fourth straight gold medal, according to our Women’s Soccer Power Index projections.U.S. fans spoiled by all the team’s recent success — the 2015 Women’s World Cup title, the 2012 Olympic gold — might have forgotten that past performance is no guarantee of future results. But those wins were hard-earned and never guaranteed. The Americans reached the 2012 gold-medal match after barely avoiding the lottery that is a penalty shootout in their semifinal against Canada, with an Alex Morgan goal at just about the last possible moment. And last summer in Canada, the team went scoreless in the first half of its first three knockout games before getting second-half goals. Just because the U.S. women sometimes made it look easy — like when they romped over Japan in the World Cup final — doesn’t mean it was.In these Olympics, even while the U.S. women were going undefeated in their first three games and winning their group, their chance of winning the gold medal, counterintuitively, was declining, to 31 percent from 38 percent before the tournament. That was partly because the quarterfinal field was so stacked: All of the eight best teams coming into the tournament advanced from the group stage. Also, the U.S. showed some weakness in the group stage, including yielding a 90th-minute goal to Colombia that led to a disappointing 2-2 draw. The team’s rating declined slightly during the group stage from the start of the tournament. Sweden’s did, too, but the Swedes remained a tough opponent, with a 21 percent chance of beating the U.S. before Friday’s match — about the chance the Cleveland Cavaliers had of beating the Golden State Warriors when trailing 3-2 in this year’s NBA Finals. Upsets happen to favorites all the time. On Friday, one happened, finally, to the U.S. women at the Olympics.Additional research by Jay Boice. Tournament favorites usually don’t win — even big ones like the U.S. women’s soccer team. Too many things can go wrong, as they did in the penalty shootout of the USWNT’s quarterfinal loss against Sweden in the Rio Olympics on Friday. A goalkeeper guesses the right way, a usually reliable shooter sends a penalty kick over the crossbar, and suddenly the team is out of the tournament. It was the USWNT’s earliest-ever exit from an Olympics or World Cup. With the Americans eliminated, the draw has opened up for new favorite Germany, which advanced to the semifinals later Friday, and host Brazil, which plays its quarterfinal against Australia on Friday night. (If Brazil wins, it could overtake Germany as the favorite, depending on the scores of its quarterfinal and Friday night’s other match, between Canada and France.) read more

Ohio State mens soccer set to open Big Ten play at Northwestern

Binghamton junior forward Alex Varkatzas (9) slides into OSU senior midfielder Kyle Culbertson (3) for the ball during an August 30. match at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. OSU lost 0-1. Photo Credit: Muyao Shen / Assist. Photo EditorThe Ohio State men’s soccer team is prepared to open Big Ten play in the third game of its four-game road trip at Toyota Park, home of the Chicago Fire.The Buckeyes are scheduled to face the Northwestern Wildcats on Friday in Bridgeview, Illinois, at 8 p.m.OSU (1-3-0) is coming off a two-game weekend road trip in which it suffered losses against No.17 University of Maryland, Baltimore County and Navy.The Buckeyes outplayed their opponent in the first half of the game against UMBC, but the Retrievers fought back in the second half.OSU fought hard to try and sustain the momentum it had going to get a victory, but UMBC proved to be the better team at the end of the game with a 1-0 victory over the Scarlet and Gray.“Against UMBC, we definitely should have won,” junior defender and co-captain Tyler Kidwell said. “I thought we had some chances and they had a few chances, but they put them away and that kind of was the difference.”The Buckeyes looked as if the first loss of the weekend had affected them mentally going into Sunday’s match against Navy. The Buckeyes struggled to compete with the Midshipmen, as they were shutout, 3-0.“I think maybe we were down from the tough loss Friday, and from the get-go, Navy gave a great effort and were all over us,” Buckeyes senior midfielder and co-captain Zach Mason said.Kidwell said that despite the two losses, the team will continue to work hard to get a win.“We have an extremely talented team, probably one of the most talented teams since I’ve been here,” Kidwell said. “We’ve just got to keep going and grinding it out.”Mason also said that the team is confident and will be fine as long as the players and coaches stick to everything they know.“We have all the pieces to win games and we have the philosophy so I think that as long as we stick to what we know and execute our game plans, we’ll be fine,” Mason said.  “It’s a confident bunch, it’s just a bit of a hardship, but we’ll bounce back.”CLASS actMason was announced as a candidate for the 2015 Senior CLASS Award on Thursday. To be eligible for the award, a student athlete must show achievements in the following four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.“It is truly an honor to be nominated for the Senior CLASS award,” Mason said in an online release from OSU. “I am blessed to have the opportunity to be a student athlete at Ohio State and extremely humbled to be considered for such a great honor.”A committee will select the top ten finalists from a list of 30 candidates in October. Those finalists will then be placed on a ballot for a nationwide vote. One male and one female will be selected for the award and those winners will be announced at the 2015 NCAA Men’s and Women’s College Cup championships in December.Last season, former OSU goalkeeper Alex Ivanov won the award, joining linebacker James Laurinaitis in 2008 as the two Buckeyes to win for their respective sports.Looking aheadFollowing Friday’s action, the OSU men’s soccer team is scheduled to travel to Akron, Ohio, to face the Akron Zips on Sept. 16. read more

TURKS CAICOS ISLANDS SET TO BENEFIT FROM MORE UK FUNDS

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppTURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS, DECEMBER 1, 2013- More funding for the Turks and Caicos Islands…An article published by the Governor’s Office divulged that the TCI will be benefitting from a £2 million fund from the UK made available through the Darwin fund which is expected to service environmental projects in all UK Overseas territories over the next two years. Almost £200 000 is set for the ‘Caicos Pine Forests’ project which is a mitigation for climate change and invasive species that runs jointly with the TCI government, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and other international partners. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

Clement Howell High parents called in to get Report Cards

first_img Clement Howell High get their hands dirty for World Wetlands Day 2016 Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 21 Aug 2015 – Some parents of Clement Howell High School are not picking up report cards and it is important that they do, as there are notices the school wants to give these parents for their children. Principal of the institution, Kadean Cunningham told Magnetic Media that the reports are available and parents really need to attend a special PTA meeting next week, August 28, to be in the know as the 2015-2016 school year begins. Again, parents you can now go and collect report cards at CHHS. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp National Heritage Month ends Eagles win again at InterHigh Championships Recommended for you Related Items:clement howell high school, report cardslast_img read more

Murkowski Led Charge to Keep F16s at Eielson AFB

first_imgSen. Lisa Murkowski has been a strong advocate for preserving military installations in Alaska since joining the Senate in 2002, and was one of the central players responsible for blocking the Air Force’s 2012 plan to relocate the F-16 Aggressor Squadron from Eielson Air Force Base in Fairbanks.Since the Air Force announced its plan to transfer the squadron, which could have harmed public services in Fairbanks as well as Anchorage, Murkowski led the Alaska’s delegation response, which included meeting with senior Air Force and DOD officials, advancing legislation and holding public forums. After two years the Air Force reversed its plans, preserving the base’s operations and the surrounding community’s quality of life. At the time, Murkowski praised the Fairbanks and Anchorage communities for speaking with one voice at public hearings.She also is urging the Air Force to base a squadron of F-35s at Eielson. Murkowski succeeded in helping to gain Missile Defense Agency funding to expand Fort Greely, which included the restoration of a missile field that had previously been mothballed.Murkowski, a member of the defense and military construction-veterans affairs panels of the Senate Appropriations Committee, has championed to need to recognize the achievements and sacrifices of military personnel. She is the congressional host of Alaska’s two major military appreciation events — the Armed Services Y Salute to the Military in Anchorage and the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce Military Appreciation Banquet.For leveraging the strength of Alaska’s defense communities to demonstrate that “America Needs Eielson,” ADC selected Murkowski to receive its Congressional Leadership Award. Dan Cohen AUTHORlast_img read more