Naas Botha: field general supreme

first_imgThe Naas Botha of today is a well-known rugby commentator on the South African Supersport Channel, but in his day as a player he was one of the most feared match-winners in the game. Botha was best known for his deadly boot – whether he was punting the ball, place-kicking or drop-kicking, he stood in a class of his own.Such was his brilliance that it didn’t take the British press long to dub him “Nasty Booter” when the Lions toured South Africa in 1980. They found out just how nasty he could be in the third test in Port Elizabeth when Botha, under immense pressure, put a touchline conversion between the uprights in wet conditions to give the Springboks a 12-10 victory and an unbeatable three-nil series lead.More than just a points machineBotha was more than just a points machine, however. His tactical understanding of the game was outstanding and his ability to dominate a match with the boot beyond compare.Reading the game like a chess master, he would keep the opposition continually on the back foot, and was always a step ahead of the rest because he could put what was in his mind into practice.Kicking with equal ease with the left or right foot, he could put the ball into touch, or between the uprights, or into the hands of a breakaway wing, seemingly at will.To categorise Botha as a kicking flyhalf alone would do the man a great injustice. Blessed with superb hands, he got a backline moving very quickly, and the fact of the matter is that backlines playing with him scored a good many tries.Although he seldom took the ball up in the manner of the modern-day flyhalf, he had an eye for a gap and was a deceptively fast runner, resulting in a good number of tries for the blond-haired flyhalf or those in support of him.Uncanny ability as a drop-kickerProbably, though, Botha will best be remembered for his uncanny ability as a drop-kicker. In the wink of an eye he could change the course of a game with a beautifully struck drop goal, and trying to defend against it was impossible given his ability to make the snap drop-kick without warning and with either foot.In one match against Natal in 1992, he dropped five goals. He was an extremely elusive player, with an excellent jink. Every opponent he faced knew he was the kingpin they needed to unsettle, but seldom did they manage to lay a hand on him.Botha was hated by fans of teams that his Northern Transvaal side faced in provincial competition – and adored by those same supporters when he turned out for the Springboks. There was a similarity between Botha and the legendary New Zealand captain Sean Fitzpatrick in that opposition fans hated him, but all would have loved to have him in their side.Springbok recordToday the former Bok captain is the third highest scorer in Springbok history, and had he been playing in recent years, with far more matches, there is no doubt that he would have far exceeded his points total of 312. As it was, he was in his prime and played for many years when South Africa was isolated from the rest of the world, denying him the chance of achieving even greater success on the world stage.He played for Northern Transvaal from the late 1970s into the early 1990s, and during that time the Blue Bulls won the Currie Cup six times, in large part due to his contributions. He captained the province a record 128 times and scored a record 2 511 points, including 1 699 points in the Currie Cup.Botha also has the distinction, uncommon among rugby players, of having a rose named after him. Long may “Rosa Naas Botha” bloom, to remind us of one the greatest Springboks and flyhalves the world of rugby has ever seen.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

More from Adam Sharp, the next OFBF exec

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A conversation with…Adam Sharp, the newly announced Executive Vice President of the Ohio Farm BureauOCJ: This will be a new role after being OFBF’s vice president of public policy. Could you give us a bit of a background on yourself and your farm background?Adam: Well I’ve been here at Ohio Farm Bureau for about 12 years. Prior to that, I worked as the agriculture advisor to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s administrator in D.C., and also with the American Farm Bureau in Washington D.C. for about seven years. That’s a little bit of my professional background. On the farm side I own and operate a family farm with my brothers in Amanda in Fairfield County. OCJ: What is it about the position of executive vice president of Ohio Farm Bureau that moved you to put your name into consideration for it?Adam: First and foremost are the members. That’s who we are and what we do is serve our members. We have terrific Farm Bureau members all across the state in every county and I count so many of them on my hands as friends. They’re people who I’ve known for a long, long time. I grew up in the Farm Bureau — my family was a part of a Farm Bureau Council when I was young — and that’s instilled in me who we are and what we do. I’m dedicated to our organization. I believe in what we do. I believe in our people, I believe in our mission, I believe in our values. That’s why I wanted to put my name in the ring for this position and I’m so proud to be named to this job because I can see that we have a lot of opportunities. It’s a great organization now. I see a lot of opportunities to make it an even better one in the future and a stronger one in the future. OCJ: What does the transition period look like as you get settled into your new office?Adam: So from now until July 18, Jack Fisher will continue to be the EVP. I’ll move into that spot on the 18th. And then Jack will officially retire at the Ohio State Fair this year. Jack loves the fair and we have always such a great presence there. That’s going to be a very fun opportunity for all of us to celebrate Jack’s career. In the meantime, Jack and I are overlapping and I’m learning everything I can. He and I are talking quite a bit about things and we’re putting our plan together for the future. OCJ: Obviously Mr. Fisher has left an impression on your organization. His efforts will be at work for many years to come, but what are some examples that he set that you see yourself using as you move forward?Adam: He individually would challenge each staff person and our leaders, our Farm Bureau volunteer leaders across the state. He would challenge us to think about things. Don’t always jump to the first conclusion that might be on your mind — think about it. Slow it down a second. Think about different angles that you can work on issues and make programs better and make people better. Those are things that have certainly influenced me. He and also Keith Stimpert, who was my predecessor in the policy department, both of them were and are have been just great people to work with because as mentors, that’s what you’re looking for. You need people to challenge you to think about things in a way that you might not have thought about before, and that is very valuable. I appreciate that from both of them. OCJ: It will be interesting to see your style of leadership, which is quite different from your predecessor. What do you think you’re going to bring to the position of Ohio Farm Bureau executive vice president to make your mark?Adam: First, dedication. Another piece is team culture. We have county farm bureaus, state Farm Bureau, American Farm Bureau — we’re all on the same team. And making sure that’s as seamless as possible and interacting up and down that chain between our counties and our state and our American, that’s something that’s very important to me. Having worked at American Farm Bureau as well, I know our resources that we have as an organization at the local level and at the national level. It is important to make sure that’s connected and we’re doing everything we can to connect at those different levels. A new direction — we have a membership model that we use but there’s a lot of evolving interest with our vast food industry in Ohio. We have a number of members across the state, as you know, who are part of the food system. Some are ag ed teachers, some are over working for food processors, some are working at co-ops and agribusinesses and many of us are farming. Connecting those groups together to build a stronger organization absolutely excites me. I look forward to those opportunities. OCJ: Millennials are an important part of Ohio agriculture. I know that many younger farmers are now taking part in some Ohio Farm Bureau groups that are tailor-made for them. Do you see your enthusiasm and your long-term goals reaching that segment of your membership and making them even stronger?Adam: Absolutely. You know our young people — I try to count myself in that category Do I fit still? That is such a dedicated group of people. And you know it’s interesting when you’re outside of Ohio in some other areas, and you hear the media talk about the graying of agriculture and “well farmers are getting older and the agriculture community is getting older.” I tell you what, I look at Ohio and I see the opposite. We have such great leaders all across the chain, but I see so many young people involved in our organization right now, and growing. I look at the size of our Young Ag Professionals Conference in the wintertime up to 700 people when it was just a few hundred just a couple years ago. When you look at that number of people and the number of our Young Ag Professional programs growing around the state, that is exciting and those are the people who are going to be our future, right? These are terrific people. One of the things I’m excited about too is that inclusiveness. We need to have an organization that is very inclusive in this regard. We have so many great leaders. I look forward to getting opportunities for new leaders to grow in our organization. I really love to see new people getting involved and making a difference and then getting satisfaction out of that. That is something that is very important to watch. I really look forward to working with the new folks and new ideas, especially when you’re talking about technology and new food systems and new ways to market our products. OCJ: There are also some challenges on the horizon. What are some of the biggest challenges in the short term the Ohio Farm Bureau faces as you begin your new role?Adam: Certainly with challenges, I would look at the farm economy out there and where the farm economy headed right now. We have some good spots and we’ve got some challenging spots out there with the drop in prices of corn and beans. So the farm economy is always something that’s on my mind, especially since I’m operating in it as well with our farm business. But you know that’s something that I feel very connected to with our members. You look out the next couple of years and you look at some of the projections that are out there, where prices are going, where the economy is going, whether it’s livestock or specialty crops or others, where is our short-term ag economy headed?But also, here in Ohio, for the very short term, is the election cycle. We’re headed into a cycle right now where we’re going to be electing new, statewide leaders, local leaders and a new president. My challenge constantly is to make sure agriculture is a key part of that and that our Farm Bureau members are at those events, supporting the candidates that they choose, making sure they’re educating all of those candidates on what we do as agriculture, what we do as a food system, and what we do as food business in the state of Ohio. And that’s incredibly important making sure that those folks recognize rural Ohio and all the things that we do and all the things that we do on our businesses in Ohio. So that’s a big challenge, but it’s one that we’ve often played in very well and look forward to in the future.last_img read more

Three Premiere Pro CC Shortcuts You Shouldn’t Edit Without

first_imgThese simple shortcuts can save you a TON of time in your edit bay. Take the time to integrate them into your editing workflow.Keyboard shortcuts are the key to faster editing. The more you memorize the faster and more fluid an editor you’ll become. The beauty of being able to fully customize the keyboard shortcuts in Premiere Pro CC is that each editor can piece together a set of shortcuts that fit them like a glove.There are some shortcuts that are not mapped to any particular keys in the default keyboard shortcut settings. To find out what a particular keyboard shortcut might be mapped to (and to remap it) simply navigate to Premiere Pro > Keyboard Shortcuts. A new window will open with a search box to jump to a particular keyboard shortcut. Click on the drop down menu at the top of the keyboard shortcut’s window to apply a layout preset from either Premiere Pro, Avid or Final Cut Pro 7, if you’re used to a particular set of keystrokes. I love that Adobe has a ‘come-as-you-are’ philosophy to editors and their keyboard shortcuts – a stark contrast to Avid’s limited keyboard mapping abilities.I’ve also previously posted 5 Keyboard Shortcuts I Can’t Edit Without, which I would wager are also worth adding into your toolset!Time Saving Shortcut #1: Add New TitleI was recently working on a project that involved adding a lot of text elements. I soon discovered that by default Premiere does not have a keyboard shortcut for ‘Add New Title Based On Current Title’.  This is a very handy little function that creates a new title, based on the currently open title, maintaining all the formatting, fonts and text that existed in the previous title. By default a new title in Premiere Pro is mapped to CMD+T. I have my new title mapped to CTRL+T, so I mapped new title based on current title to CTRL+SHIFT+T. For memories sake, I would suggest mapping it to something related to that T keyboard shortcut. Just remember: T for Title.Time Saving Shortcut #2: Toggle TracksAs a Final Cut Pro 7 editor I was used to pasted items appearing on the same tracks as the ones from which they were copied. But because of the way in which copy and pasting works within Premiere Pro CC, in which the activated tracks are far more important to getting things in the right place, mapping some shortcuts to toggling tracks on and off becomes more important.In this case I have mapped Toggle Video Track 1, 2 and 3 to the simple keyboard shortcuts of the 1, 2 and 3 keys. For the audio tracks I have mapped these to ALT+1, ALT+2 etc.  You can find these under the Toggle command in the keyboard shortcut’s search box.Time Saving Shortcut #3: Select Next ClipWhen you are colour grading within Premiere Pro, or adding an other effects to a lot of clips for that matter, it can be very time consuming to have to keep moving the mouse backwards and forwards between selecting a clip with the mouse in the timeline panel (to see it’s parameter settings in the effects panel) and moving back to the effects panel to change a particular parameter. Helpfully (and this time by default) Premiere Pro CC does have a keyboard shortcut for selecting the next and previous clip in the timeline which is CMD+DOWN ARROW and CMD+UP ARROW.You’ll also need to use SHIFT+3 and SHIFT+5 to switch between activating the timeline and the effects panels. The most useful implementation of this shortcut is when you’re checking through a final grade to make sure each clip has the settings it should, and you want to blast through the timeline, hammering on CMD+DOWN ARROW.Hit the comments section with your favorite time saving shortcuts and share some editing wisdom with the rest of us!last_img read more

Sons bat for fathers ahead of Himachal polls

first_imgWinter is around the corner but it’s still quite ‘sonny’ up in Himachal Pradesh as the state gears up for assembly polls .While Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal and arch-rival Virbhadra Singh , the state Congress chief, are busy rallying support across all the 67 constituents, their sons have taken up the mantle for campaigning in their father’s constituencies.And the upcoming polls are bound to prove a test of fire for both Arun Dhumal, who looks after the family business in Jalandhar, and budding politician Vikramaditya Singh. Both their fathers are contesting from new constituencies as the delimitation commission has scrapped Dhumal’s bastion Bamsan constituency in Hamirpur. Virbhadra’s stronghold Rohru, meanwhile, has been reserved for scheduled caste candidates.Dhumal and Virbhadra will now be vying for victory from Hamirpur and Shimla (rural) respectively.It’s hardly surprising then that Vikramaditya and Arun have been going out of their way to connect with the electorate and working hard to ensure their father’s absence doesn’t cost them the November elections.Vikramaditya, who’s in his early 20s, gets up at the crack of dawn every day before setting out to interact with voters, obviously taking his maiden attempt at campaigning seriously.He visits a new place each day and spends 16 hours on the campaign trail from 8 am till midnight.”It is a big responsibility as the campaign is for a reputed politician,” Vikramaditya said.”People are raising local issues, such as lack of health amenities and road connectivity. Unemployment is another big problem,” he added.The path appears easier for Arun as Hamirpur is already a Dhumal bastion, but that doesn’t mean the scion is taking the job any lightly. The businessman has been trudging up and down every village of the constituency with his team.”People of Hamirpur are going to poll record votes in favour of the chief minister. He is campaigning elsewhere as he has to cover 67 constituencies. The people are overwhelmed and coming forward openly,” Arun said.Interestingly, neither Dhumal nor Virbhadra has announced dates for campaigns in their own constituencies. But they are expected to canvass in their respective constituencies for at least one day, when they will also file their nominations – October 16 for Dhumal and October 17 for Virbhadra.advertisementlast_img read more

2007 VAWDON CUP ROUND THREE WRAP

first_imgRound Three of the New South Wales Touch Association’s (NSWTA) 32nd Annual Vawdon Cup was played at the Tempe and Bankstown venues on Friday 3 August 2007.There were some hard fought victories and some impressive performances across the board as teams clicked into gear and looked to establish some good early season form.In the 7.50pm Men’s Premier League clash at Bankstown the Parramatta Eels recorded their first victory of the season when they held off Manly 6-5 in a tight struggle. Parramatta, in need of a confidence boosting win, got away to a flyer and in the first ten minutes played error free touch to lead the Sea Eagles 3-1, with Adam Lollback dotting down for a double for the Eels in quick time. The Eagles hit back as the half wore, but the Eels still went to the break 4-2 the better.The Manly coaching staff replaced the H2O with magic water at half time and the Eagles came out full of running to dominate for much of the second stanza.The Sea Eagles, with Putatou Berryman and Jamie Chan leading the charge, took the game right up to Parramatta, pressing the scoreline on numerous occasions and getting back on level terms at 5-5.Parramatta composed themselves to regain control of the game and held on to record a narrow 6-5 victory.In the sold out match-up of the round, 2006 Vawdon Cup Grand Finalists Canterbury Bulldogs prevailed 3-2 over 2006 NSWTA State Cup champions Wests Magpies in a high quality encounter at 7.50pm at Tempe.The highly anticipated clash featuring two of the competition’s most passionate clubs didn’t disappoint with both outfits going hammer and tong to secure the premiership points. The game was a replay of last year’s NSWTA State Cup Grand Final, though both teams were vastly altered from the line-ups that met in that epic final, with several big guns forced out of the game through various work/injury reasons.Australia Men’s Open representatives Garry Sonda (Canterbury), and Wests trio Jason Stanton, Scott Mitchell, and Anthony Ziade were all unavailable.Despite the missing super stars, the punters weren’t asking for their money back, with both teams producing a quality game.The game, as expected, was end to end, with both teams keen to get on a roll early and set the platform for a winning night at the office.It was Wests who bounced out of the barriers best, with the calm leadership of Australian Men’s Open playmaker Daniel Rushworth, and the cool hand of West’s veteran Michael “Bear” Farhat, laying on two early touchdowns for the Magpies, allowing Wests some early breathing space.The Dogs were out of sorts for the majority of the first half, finding it difficult to attain field position and looking disorganised. The tide started to turn through powerhouse driving displays by Matt Bird and 2006 New South Wales Mixed Open representative Stuart Brierty, and improved team defence on the score line. This heightened composure in attack and defence frameworked the Dogs first touchdown.Canterbury’s 2006 New South Wales Mixed Open representative Daniel Walsh pulled the trigger on a long ball that was brilliantly picked up centimeters from the turf by the money man Matt Prowse who showed great balance to scoop the ball up and beat a diving Aceya Bishara to score.  2-1 to Wests at the break, with both sides entitled to think that the game was there for the taking.The second half was vastly different from the first, with the Maggies failing to get out of their own half and the Dogs mounting pressure to slowly gain the ascendancy as the half wore on.Stuart Brierty, 2007 Australian Mixed Open star Steve Roberts, and Paul Dwyer drove strongly to bankroll the Dogs second half performance. During the onslaught from the Dogs, The Wests defence held admirably with Michael Jacono and Cameron Nicolls in particular showing their growing maturity in this company.Wests used up a lot of petrol trying to repel the rampant Dogs attack and then when the footy was back in Magpie hands, found the Dogs kill defence overwhelming with the Dogs commitment and drive pressuring Wests into costly turnovers. Eventually the weight of possession told and the Dogs got the equalizer to make it 2-2.Paul Dwyer then worked a set piece close to the scoreline with the Quicksilver Steve Roberts to slide over and exploit a tired Magpies defence to put the Bulldogs into the lead 3-2 for the first time in the game.Despite throwing the kitchen sink and everything in it at the Doggies line to bridge the deficit in the final 5 minutes, time conspired against the Magpies and Canterbury held strong to secure the win 3-2.At Bankstown at 8.40pm Hornsby Lions continued on their winning way with an enterprising 9-5 victory over the Cronulla Sharks.The Hornsby boys had racked up 5 touchdowns in the first 11 minutes of the game to signify what could have been a long night at the office for the Shire lads who had to dig deep to stem the Lions remarkable roll on.The Sharkies worked feverishly to get back into the contest and at one stage got the score back to 7- 4, but with Dave Roberts directing traffic better than Tom Croyden at peak hour in his hey day at Mount Thomas, and the irrepressible Dylan Hennessey’s feet declaring happy hour on the Sharks defence, the Hornsby combination went on with job to record a 9-5 victory that rocketed them to the top of the competition standings.Shaun Street and the Tope brothers, Mitch and Matt, never stopped trying for Cronulla, whilst Rhys “The Claw” Bevan produced a spectacular play for the Sharkies when he plucked a ball at high speed from mid air one handed, whilst on the dive to plant it for an opportunistic touchdown.Danny Hamilton, Jon Palau, Heath Cooper, and the fleet footed Maurice Kennedy all played dominant roles for the winners and the Hornsby team’s impressive early season form has set a high benchmark for other teams to chase. In the late 9.30m timeslot at Tempe, defending Vawdon Cup champions, the Penrith Panthers got home 7-5 over a spirited Easts Roosters combination.Both teams needed a win as much as the Broncos need a backline for the business end of the NRL season, and effort level was not a problem in a very willing contest.Penrith were on top for most of the game, despite the Roosters drawing level in the first half.The experienced Chris Benfield was Penrith’s standout performer with some impressive long balls that were jut too good for the Easts outside defenders. Scott “Jack” Buckley and the Springfield brothers were full of running to give Easts little respite for the entire game. Easts had captain/coach Chris Hill returning and Jarrat Wood back from injury, but the Roosters were far from their best in a performance cruelled by ill-discipline and handling errors. Christian Frost was outstanding for Easts, whilst Jonathon Rooke put in a “workaholic” performance in his last match before surgery, that will rule him out of action for the Roosters for the next four-six weeks.The Roosters will look to improve their cohesion in coming weeks, whilst the Panthers will gear up this Friday for the replay of last year’s Vawdon Cup Grand Final against Canterbury.In the Women’s Premier Division, 2006 Vawdon Cup Grand Finalists Canterbury Bulldogs recorded a 5-3 win over the Wests Magpies in a high quality contest at 7.00pm at Tempe.The Doggies were up 2-0 at half-time with 2007 Australian Women’s Open World Cup stars sisters Louise and Claire Winchester dictating the play and proving to be the most influential players on the paddock.Wests are a dangerous outfit who have the players to give the premiership a real shake in 2007, and it didn’t surprise to see the Magpies bridge the gap to 4-3 mid way through the second half, thanks to some quality attack led by Wests gun Nola Campbell who has started the Vawdon season in outstanding form.The Doggies were controlled and played percentage touch in the clinch exchanges. They have the ability to dig in and pay the price to secure victory, or be more adventurous on cue, and it did not surprise to see them nail a late touchdown to close the game out 5-3.Australian 20 Years Youth squad members Nicole Mc Hugh and Nicky Albury played well for the Magpies, whilst Kate Fitzsimmons was again prominent for a committed Canterbury outfit that is playing well within itself with equal parts skill and tenacity.Cronulla Sharks secured a 5-3 win over the Central Coast Dolphins at Bankstown in the 7.50pm timeslot.Cronulla got off to a good start with winger Susan Smith scoring early off a great long ball from Kath Fitzgerald.  Central Coast hit back straight away with 2007 Australian Women’s Open World Cup representative Kylie Hilder setting up a touchdown in the corner. The Dolphins played aggressively and unsettled the Sharkies who struggled to find rhythm in the first half.Cronulla Captain Jo Nelson composed her troops at half time and helped them to deliver a dominant second half performance.Nelson weighed in with some quality driving as well as setting up a touchdown and scoring one herself off a great gap hit.Rebecca Howe was a constant threat to the Dolphins defence and Jenna “Squirt” Cell made a miraculous pick-up to nab a vital touchdown late in the game.Star turn Kylie Hilder was outstanding for the Central Coast who battled hard for the duration, but failed to finish off their opportunities when it mattered most.Young guns, the Woolongong Devils, who have had a tough initiation to Premier League facing the competition’s big guns Easts and Canterbury in the opening two rounds, had an easier night last Friday recording a confidence boosting 4-0 victory over the Manly Sea Eagles in the 8.40pm game at Bankstown. Manly, by their own admission failed to control the ball early and gifted the “Young Divas” a mountain of possession, which they gratefully utilized. Bianca Mounsey, Ash “Dobbie” Dobbins, and Jess McCall, with two touchdowns, were the Devils scorers.Dobbin’s Touchdown featured more dummies than the total in a childrens’ crèche, and Jess Mc Call’s double involved some great vision and a turn of speed that left the opposition grasping at thin air. Kobi Ruzzene was also a key figure for Woolongong, producing a strong defensive game and being a driving force in the battle for field position. The “Young Divas”, whilst happy with their first win of the season; have identified room for improvement in coming weeks in the effectiveness of their rucking, and the fluidity of their line attack.Premiers Easts Roosters “schooled up” the young Penrith Panthers combination, delivering a comprehensive 8-2 lesson at 8.40pm at Tempe.The Roosters scored in the fourth minute and continued to pepper the dogged Penrith line until a well-timed long ball put the Roosters 2-0 up.To their credit, Penrith hit back through a touchdown to veteran Vicki Wheatley.The touchdown stung the premiers into action and they notched two quick touchdowns to go 4-1 up before some great lead up work from Penrith’s Lisa Clark and Ally Tairi gift-wrapped a touchdown for Brook Began.At 4-2 up at the break, the Roosters came out on resumption to post four unanswered touchdowns to record a comfortable 8-2 scoreline.Easts Megan Smee produced a dominant performance, whilst the Roosters new recruits in 2007 Pepita Macalister-Knight and Megan Campbell stood up well and are finding their feet in the star studded line-up.Vicki Wheatley and Rachael Foster gave their all for Penrith, and with some defensive adjustments the Panthers will continue to improve as the season unfolds.Round Four of the Vawdon Cup will be played at the Bankstown and Tempe venues on Friday 10 August 2007 and will feature some great clashes in both the Men’s and Women’s Premier divisions.In the Men’s draw, Canterbury Bulldogs and Penrith Panthers meet at 7.50pm at Bankstown in the 2006 Vawdon Cup Grand Final replay that is sure to produce a high quality encounter. Reserve seating has been sold out, but there are a handful of general admission tickets still floating around for the highly anticipated clash.Easts and Cronulla square off at Tempe at 7.50pm, whilst at Bankstown at 8.40pm, the Parramatta Eels will confront a white hot Hornsby Lions side, currently sitting atop the premiership ladder.At Tempe Wests will be looking to consolidate their position on the ladder against Manly in the 8.40pm timeslot.In the Women’s premier division, at 7.00 pm, State Cup champions Canterbury will take on Penrith at Bankstown, whilst defending Vawdon Cup champions Easts Roosters play Cronulla at Tempe.In the late timeslot at 9.30pm, Woolongong Devils will be looking for back-to-back victories when they meet the Central Coast Dolphins at Bankstown, and the Manly Sea Eagles will battle the Wests Magpies at Tempe.Action continues in the 2007 NSWTA Vawdon Cup Division 1 and 2 Men’s, Women’s, and Mixed, as well as Men’s Seniors and Masters grades.This weeks “Blackest Cat” for the Men’s Premier League Player of the Round goes to cool and collected Doggies winger Matty Prowse who has better hands than a Swedish masseuse.This week’s “Go to Girl” for the Women’s Premier League Player of the Round goes to Canterbury’s Claire “Bear” Winchester for her dominant drive in the middle and her superior defence, not even light is allowed through on her watch!Thanks to all coaches and players for their contribution to the wrap.Good luck to all.When in doubt, throw the flick pass.For the full draw, results, and all the latest information about the Vawdon Cup please visit the NSWTA web-site: www.nswtouch.com.aulast_img read more

10 months agoMan City attacker Sterling: Victory a massive step for us

first_imgMan City attacker Sterling: Victory a massive step for usby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester City attacker Raheem Sterling says victory at Southampton has them back on track.After two successive losses over the festive period, it was vital City bounced back and to a man the Blues delivered an impressive all-round display on the South Coast.“It’s a massive step and what we needed to do. We had two poor games and we knew we needed to win here today to give ourselves a chance,” said Sterling. “But we were really motivated to give ourselves a chance and that’s what we did.“We had to bring that level that we know we can bring – we had a bit of luck but we played some great football and controlled the game which we know we can do.“Now its down to us to keep this focus and go onto the next one.“ About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Photo: FSU’s Rashad Greene Trolled Notre Dame With A “Happy St. Patrick’s Day” Instagram Post

first_imgFSU's Rashad Greene celebrates after beating Notre Dame.IG/_rg80_Today is St. Patrick’s Day, so we’ve had plenty of college athletes and teams send out celebratory tweets and Instagram posts. Florida State wide receiver Rashad Greene took a slightly different tone for the holiday. Greene, who racked up 1,365 yards and seven touchdowns this season, posted a screenshot from Florida State’s dramatic 31-27 win over Notre Dame, a clear dig at the Fighting Irish.Greene caught eight passes for 108 yards and a touchdown against Notre Dame, and caught two big passes on what would prove to be the winning drive for the Seminoles. Well played, Rashad.last_img

Independence Ball in Atlanta August 12

first_imgStory Highlights The event, which will celebrate Jamaica’s 55th year of Independence and the AJA’s 40 th year of service to the Caribbean community in Metro Atlanta, is considered the premier event that will bring together Jamaican nationals and friends of Jamaica under the theme ‘Forty Years Abroad, Fifty-Five Years A Yaad’. Jamaica’s Consul General to Miami, Franz Hall; Jamaica’s Honorary Consul to Atlanta, Jewel Scott; and Dr. Neville Ying, representing ‘Jamaica Diaspora 55’ are among those to attend the function. Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks, will deliver the keynote address at the Atlanta Jamaica Association (AJA) Independence Ball and Scholarship Awards ceremony on Saturday, August 12, at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Atlanta. Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks, will deliver the keynote address at the Atlanta Jamaica Association (AJA) Independence Ball and Scholarship Awards ceremony on Saturday, August 12, at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Atlanta.The event, which will celebrate Jamaica’s 55th year of Independence and the AJA’s 40 th year of service to the Caribbean community in Metro Atlanta, is considered the premier event that will bring together Jamaican nationals and friends of Jamaica under the theme ‘Forty Years Abroad, Fifty-Five Years A Yaad’.The event has been endorsed by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport as one of the Jamaica 55 events abroad.In celebration of its 40 years of service, the AJA will present 13 scholarships to college-bound students in Metro Atlanta and Jamaica.According to the association’s President, Mr. Alan Stewart, the AJA, to date, has awarded scholarships valued at US$100,000. This is the association’s way of giving back to help educate young Jamaicans in the USA as well as back home in Jamaica.Jamaica’s Consul General to Miami, Franz Hall; Jamaica’s Honorary Consul to Atlanta, Jewel Scott; and Dr. Neville Ying, representing ‘Jamaica Diaspora 55’ are among those to attend the function.Meanwhile, Ambassador Marks will pay a three-day visit to Northern California from August 25 to 27.While there, she will pay a courtesy call on the Mayors of San Francisco, Oakland and San José as well as on US Congresswoman, Barbara Lee.On Saturday, August 26 she will meet with potential investors from the area and deliver the keynote address at the Jamaican American Association of Northern California (JAANC) Independence Gala at the HS Lordships restaurant in Berkeley, California.last_img read more

Basketballs Other 3Point Revolution

The Steph Curry Pull-Up Vigil has been going on for weeks now.Curry is the pagan god of long-range pull-ups, a shot that doesn’t seem to have a place in a league obsessed with efficiency. But over the last three seasons, Curry has made it work anyway, leading the league in pull-up threes — taken and made — and hitting them about 40 percent of the time. But this season he got off to a slow start, making 21.4 percent of his pull-up threes in December, and today he’s sitting at 33.3 percent, just a hair below Russell Westbrook’s mark. Curry’s swoon is hard to explain, but he’s shooting 43.3 percent in his last 10 games and 48.5 in his last five. Smart money says he’ll be just fine.Glance at that pull-up leaderboard, though, and you’ll notice that Curry’s seat hasn’t been vacated, it’s been overtaken. Where just a few years ago Curry was the unrivaled king of pumping efficient points out of a traditionally inefficient well, today an armful of players are doing convincing Steph impersonations off the bounce.The logic against the pull-up three is simple: It’s far, far easier to shoot a spot-up jumper than it is to shoot off the dribble, and it’s far, far easier to find an open look by moving without the ball than it is while holding the ball. This is why most modern offenses are built to work the ball around to players in motion off the ball, looking for an open catch-and-shoot three, preferably from the corner. If the goal of an offense is to seek the most efficient shots, and the best offenses are chasing spot-up threes, then the alternative is clearly less than ideal.The argument in favor of the shot is somehow even simpler: If it goes in, it’s unstoppable. For a player with a certain set of skills, it’s a shot that’s both always available and always open.For the last three seasons, Curry has been unstoppable. For all the intricacies and nuance built into the Warriors’ offense, the single most unguardable piece of it was always Curry pulling up from 30 feet or sliding around a ball screen and flicking up a jumper. Fans, announcers and coaches all learned to recite the Steph Curry mantra: That’s a bad shot if anyone else takes it. Except, increasingly, it isn’t.This season, 26 players are taking at least two pull-up threes per game, up from 17 in 2013-14 and 21 last season. Of the guys taking at least two per game this season, 12 are hitting at least 36 percent (the league average for all threes), up from five in ’13-14. Kemba Walker is taking 4.5 per game and hitting 37.3 percent; Kyle Lowry is taking 4.1 per game and hitting 41.5; James Harden is making less than 32 percent of his, but he’s taking 6.4 a game, tied for the most in the four years the NBA has kept track of pull-ups. We can’t write off this wave of Steph-like gunners who have emerged as mere early-season noise this deep into the schedule. These players aren’t just taking Curry’s signature shots — they’re making a good number of them as well. And that says something about the way teams are approaching modern offense.Not many players can approximate the totality of Steph Curry, but they can emulate him piecemeal. The Rockets, for instance, are shooting from the parking lot this year, distorting the basic shapes of NBA defenses. And while not many teams can duplicate the ball movement of Houston or Cleveland — movement that sets up all those open threes — a good number of them have a guy who can shake his man and rise up for a three. In a league dominated by the long ball, teams seem to be coming around to the idea that sometimes one player can make his own shot, especially if the guy can hit it regularly.The shift in the league’s approach is noticeable at the team level as much as at the player level. In 2013-14, teams averaged 5.1 pull-up threes per game; by last season, that had climbed to 5.9 per game, and this season we’re up at 6.6. A shot and a half per game doesn’t sound like a lot, but that represents an increase of about 30 percent. For context, compare that to what’s happened during the league’s “scoring explosion” — that has come with just a 25 percent rise in overall 3-point attempts over the same four seasons. As teams try to cram ever more threes into each game, a little revolution within the revolution is changing the ways that these shots are created. Hero ball is allowed back on the court, so long as it’s at the 3-point line.This spike in pull-ups isn’t just about the NBA’s faster, rip-and-run style of play these days. When I looked at numbers for the traditional image of a pull-up three — a point guard dribbling the leather off of the ball 30 feet from the rim for ages, only to pull up from deep without ever sniffing the paint — I still saw an uptick in volume and performance. Eleven players are taking at least one three per game on plays where they took seven or more dribbles before the shot (that’s the proxy we’re using for half-court, rather than transition, shots). Six of them are shooting at least 40 percent. Back in 2013-14, those numbers were seven and three.Because the NBA only has reliable data on pull-ups for a few seasons, it’s tough to say how much of this comes down to luck from year to year, like a player’s BABIP in baseball. Walker went from shooting 31.9, 25.6, and 32.2 percent on pull-up threes in years past to 37.3 so far this season; Lowry was a mid-30s guy until this season, when he’s jumped up to 41.5 percent; Kyrie Irving has consistently been in the high 30s to low 40s, except last season, when he slumped badly to 29.1. The individual players peaking from season to season can and likely will shift around. But even with a revolving-door cast, the trend can live on. If it does, it might just give the 3-point revolution a little more flavor.Whether it’s the razzle-dazzle of Curry’s Shammgod or Kemba’s UTEP two-step, or Westbrook hitting the handbrake and going from top speed to perfectly perpendicular in one bounce, or LeBron and Harden casually walking into an unblockable shot, the pull-up done right is a beautiful thing. And if its most proficient practitioners have reached a point where we can reclaim it from the analytics-say-it’s-bad graveyard, perhaps NBA fans won’t be so quick to mourn the next time Steph Curry has a bad December. read more

Guardiola says Aguero will be ready for the World Cup

first_imgManchester City star striker Sergio Aguero’s recovery process has been going really well after undergoing a knee surgery and he will most likely be joining his team for the World Cup, according to Guardiola.Aguero underwent a keyhole surgery on his right knee after sustaining an injury, which stopped him from participating in his team’s final games of the Premier League season. However, he will be fit enough to help his teammates in the Argentina international team in the World Cup in Russia during the summer.Even though the injury stopped him from playing in the last bit of the campaign, Aguero still managed to score 30 goals across all tournaments for the Citizens and helped them win the Premier League.norwich city, manchester city, premier leagueReport: City are stunned by Norwich George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Manchester City was stunned by Norwich City in todays Premier League clash.Much has been made in recent days of the potential impact of Aymeric…“Yes, he will arrive okay [for the World Cup],” Guardiola said prior to their game with Huddersfield, according to FourFourTwo.“I have the information from Dr Cugat in Barcelona and Sergio’s recovery is doing great.”last_img read more