Euro 2016 joy for Hungary as they end 30-year wait

first_imgBy Zoltan FazekasHungary’s 30-year wait to play on the major championship stage will end in France next year after their 2-1 victory over Norway ensured that one of football’s most storied nations qualified for the Euro 2016 finals.The triumph, which sealed their 3-1 victory on aggregate in front of an ecstatic crowd in the Groupama Arena, guaranteed Hungary’s first appearance in any championship finals since the 1986 World Cup in Mexico.“I have to congratulate my team, the association president Sandor Csanyi, and also Pal Dardai, who I took over from and he left this team for me,” said Hungary’s German coach Bernd Storck who took charge in July.“The players’ approach was fantastic during those two games, they fought well and deserved to qualify to France.”The Hungarians built on their first-leg win in Oslo when Tamas Priskin curled in a delightful 14th-minute opener and Markus Henriksen’s own goal on 83 minutes made the tie safe.Henriksen atoned with a late goal but it was scant consolation for the Norwegians as the home side celebrated qualifying for the European Championship finals for the first time since 1972.The toast of Budapest was Hungary’s 39-year-old Gabor Kiraly, who made a series of superb saves over the two legs.Ferencvaros’s home ground erupted almost like never before when Priskin curled in a fabulous strike from 16 metres after a quick counter-attack to put Hungary ahead.Kiraly had to make a fine save from Haitam Aleesami’s low shot in the 27th minute after a flowing passing move from the visitors and Norway came even closer when Even Hovland’s header from a corner hit the post in the 45th minute.Balazs Dzsudzsak’s deflected shot struck the crossbar in the 58th minute after a rare counter-attack by the hosts, who dropped deeper to defend their overall two-goal advantage.Kiraly made another excellent save in the 76th minute when he parried Marcus Pedersen’s close-range shot before the tie was effectively sealed seven minutes from time as Dzsudzsak’s corner was bundled under pressure into his own net by Henriksen.The AZ Alkmaar man then pulled one back for Norway in the 87th minute but it was too little, too late.“Congratulations to Hungary, they were better than us over the two legs,” said Norway coach Per-Mathias Hogmo.“I am deeply disappointed with our performance, we could not score in Oslo, that was a big setback. All in all, we came up short.”last_img read more

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Katua and Baru going to Rio

first_imgThe two secured invitations through the International Olympic Committee’s qualification systems.This allows the best athletes in each sport to participate in the Games primarily through the continental qualification of athletes and teams.Katua (60kg) is PNG’s first Commonwealth Youth Games gold medallist and will look to build on his Pacific Games and Commonwealth Youth Games gold medals from 2015.Baru (62kg) on the other hand is currently PNG’s top male lifter and won gold at the recent Oceania Championships. He also won best lifter of the championship title.Secretary General of the PNG Olympic Committee, Auvita Rapilla said both Katua and Baru had been rewarded for their hard work. “Although the duo were not able to qualify through their respective qualification tournaments, their level of performance has been recognized by the International Olympic Committee and their respective International Federations through the awarding of the Tripartite Commission places.“Both Thadius and Morea have had some significant performances at the international level and it is fantastic to see them rewarded with Tripartite Commission Places,” said Auvita Rapilla.Katua and Baru now Ryan Pini (Swimming), Toea Wisil (Athletics), Theo Piniau (Athletics), Samantha Kassman, Maxemillion Kassman (Taekwondo) and Raymond Ovinou (Judo) as Team PNG’s contingent for the Olympics.last_img read more

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IOC cooling on e-sports as Olympic event

first_imgAfter an Olympic leaders’ meeting overnight, the IOC says “discussion about the inclusion of esports/egames as a medal event on the Olympic program is premature.”Enthusiasm has seemed to dim since the IOC hosted a July conference with esports organizers and players.Sports bodies are now advised to “continue to engage with this (gaming) community, whilst at the same time acknowledging that uncertainties remain.”The IOC rules out cooperation with violent games, and suggests virtual and augmented reality could become more popular with young people.”Commercially driven” gaming was also compared unfavorably with “values-based” sports.The IOC says governing bodies will continue meeting gaming industry officials “to explore jointly collaborative projects.”last_img read more

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Ill Zverev beaten at Indian Wells, Osaka through

first_imgA sick Alexander Zverev was sent packing from the BNP Paribas Open with a 6-3 6-1 defeat by fellow German Jan-Lennard Struff in the third round at Indian Wells, California on Monday.The night match between world number one Novak Djokovic, who is playing his first tournament since his Australian Open triumph in January, and Philipp Kohlschreiber was suspended with the top seed leading 1-0.Struff saved all four break points he faced and took barely an hour to clinch his first career win over Zverev in five attempts.“I have been sick for a week. That hasn’t changed unfortunately,” third seed Zverev told reporters. “I think I just got unlucky, got a virus somewhere and that’s how it is.”Zverev lost to Nick Kyrgios in the final of the Acapulco tournament in Mexico nine days ago.He said his main focus was to recover for the Miami Open that starts in Florida next week.Next up for 55th-ranked Struff will be Canadian 13th seed Milos Raonic, who had his hands full before prevailing against American qualifier Marcos Giron 4-6 6-4 6-4.“He came up with the goods and definitely pushed me to the brink there where I was getting a little bit frustrated,” Raonic told reporters after converting three of his 12 break points.“I think I created a lot of chances and a few maybe I didn’t take the way I would have liked but he also stepped up well on his chances.“I just kept missing opportunities. I could have drifted off a few times mentally.”Giron rued what might have been after failing to capitalise on a winning position.“Even though he’s a big favourite, it still hurts to lose, being up a break in the third,” said the world 217.“He really stayed disciplined. He kept fighting and putting ball in the court and I made a few mistakes. I think he showed why he’s one of the best players.”Seventh seed Dominic Thiem beat Gilles Simon 6-3 6-1 while Croat Ivo Karlovic defeated Indian qualifier Prajnesh Gunneswaran 6-3 7-6(3).In the women’s draw, world number one Naomi Osaka powered into the fourth round after a 6-4 6-2 victory over Danielle Collins.The 21-year-old Japanese had a shaky start when she was broken early in the first set but quickly found her groove and broke the American four times and struck 29 winners to advance.The U.S. and Australian Open champion, who is also defending the title at Indian Wells, will next face Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic, who beat Ekaterina Alexandrova 6-4 6-2.The duo were joined in the fourth round by seven-times Grand Slam champion Venus Williams, who defeated qualifier Christina McHale 6-2 7-5.The 38-year-old Williams, who showed her mettle in the second round where she upset world number three Petra Kvitova, will meet unseeded German Mona Barthel in the fourth round.“I feel definitely more comfortable going into that match than, for example, today,” Williams told reporters.“I had never played McHale before, so you feel like you don’t really know what’s going to happen.Earlier, Latvian 11th seed Anastasija Sevastova became the latest player to be stuck down with a viral illness at the tournament.Sevastova was down 5-0 in the first set of her third round match with Estonian 21st seed Anett Kontaveit when she retired.Her departure came less than 24 hours after Serena Williams was unable to continue her match on Sunday, also citing a viral illness.Among those women still feeling healthy, three-times grand slam champion Angelique Kerber battled back to beat Russian qualifier Natalia Vikhlyantseva 3-6 6-1 6-3.Kerber took a while to warm to her task on a cool morning in the California desert.“She was playing really fast and flat, so that was something I was not really expecting,” the German said of her opponent.“I was trying to adjust, especially with my movement at the end of the first set and beginning of the second, and I think that was the key to coming back.”Fifth seed Karolina Pliskova was not at her very best but still prevailed 6-3 6-2 over Ysaline Bonaventure.“I felt somehow strange and the match was strange,” said Pliskova.last_img read more

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Director of Sport rejects falsehoods

first_imgDear Editor,It is never my intention to discuss these issues in the public domain, unfortunately, the issue was placed in the public domain and therefore I must defend my good character.I note an article appearing in the May 9, 2017, under the headline ‘National Sports Commission Director allegedly pays assistant M for doing nothing’. I wish to unequivocally state that this article is based on falsehoods and I reject any assertion or allegation of improper conduct on my part as Director of Sport. At all times I have executed my duties with the highest level of integrity and within the law. Further, I have forged strong relationships between the National Sports Commission (NSC) and all national and other sporting bodies as I have worked assiduously to raise the profile of sports in Guyana. Mine is a tireless and thankless task but one which I pursue with enthusiasm, zeal and a passion for the sector.From my interactions with the various sporting organisations I have every reason to believe that I enjoy a high level of confidence and trust from the entire sporting fraternity. This has been achieved even as I have operated under severe internal constraints and with limited resources – the details of which I do not wish to disclose at this time. Nonetheless, my work in sports is on public record as is my achievements and performance in the sector.I have every reason to believe that this article is part of a naked attack on my person, character and integrity which is politically motivated. Further, it is my view that the intellectual authors of this attack are steeped in envy of the achievements of the NSC and the consequent positive public attention which has followed. I do not believe that it is any coincidence that this attack has come mere weeks after the successful and critically acclaimed NSC Sports Awards at which the medallists of Guyana’s CARIFTA Team were awarded University of Guyana scholarships by the NSC.I am pleased to have read that an investigation is being conducted. I commit my full and unreserved cooperation with same as I am confident that I and my team at the NSC will be completely vindicated.Further, I call for an independent investigation in uncovering the intellectual authors of the article and that those culpable have appropriate action taken against them by the relevant authorities.Sincerely,Christopher JonesDirector of Sportlast_img read more

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City pavements to be regularised

first_imgTown Clerk of Georgetown Mayor and City Council (M&CC) Royston King has stated there will be regularisation of pavements in the capital city.This will be done to ensure city pavements are all on a similar level. He made these comments Monday while inspecting the relocationCity Hall workers dismantling the elevated pavement in MarchTown Clerk Royston King and his team on Monday in Georgetownexercise of Stabroek Market vendors.“That matter is being addressed right now by the City Engineer… sometime ago we have had cause to remove unauthorised structures that were put up by Royal Castle on the Coral Street area,” expressed the Town Clerk.He also told this publication that City Council had to remove “unauthorized structures” that were put up by a building under construction in Water Street.“What they did was to elevate the level of the pave without getting the permission and we’re moving through the city,” he explained.“This not just about vendors, this is about everybody who is not complying with the laws,” King explained, noting that everyone must comply with the laws of city council.last_img read more

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Gov’t Vows to Use Sinoe’s CDF for Damage at GVL

first_imgThe Government has vowed to use Sinoe County’s Development Funds (CDF) to pay for damages caused by rioters at the Golden Verolum-Liberia (GVL) recently.At the Ministry of Information press briefing yesterday, Minister Lewis Brown explained that the relevant government authorities, including the Ministries of Justice and Labor have been directed to work with the GVL to carry out a full assessment of the damages to the concession’s properties. He said the government will use the Social or the County Development Fund to pay for properties damaged by the rioters.Minister Brown said the Liberia National Police (LNP) had begun a thorough search and seizure of operations in Butaw for the looted properties of GVL. During the incident several persons were held hostage, including the Minister of Gender, Julia Duncan-Cassell, who acted as Chairman of the Cabinet in the absence of the President from the country, and the Deputy Minister for Administration at the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Varney Sirleaf.Minister Brown further disclosed that when the rioters or their ring leaders are found and properly identified they will be arrested along with anyone that harbored them. The retrieved looted properties will be returned to the company.“Authorities at the MOJ have also been instructed to press for additional charges including that of economic sabotage against such persons whenever applicable.” According to Min. Brown, the violence in Butaw does not threaten our peace and security. “It undermines our collective livelihood and unfairly portrays the country as an unsafe destination for foreign investments,” he pointed out. The government, he declared, had worked hard to return the country to an enviable place for foreign and domestic investments in order to create much needed jobs and improve the living conditions of its citizenry.The government will decisively and effectively resist any effort by anyone or any group either to alter our course or reverse the collective progress gained over the years by all Liberians, he emphasizedHe stated that “the government will not accept the misuse or abuse of international protocols to undermine its sovereign duties and responsibilities, thereby making it difficult, if not impossible, for her to meet the needs and fulfill the expectations of its people.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Aurier: No Gunners agreement

first_imgHowever, with the Elephants knocked out of the Brazil showpiece in the group stages, no such move has materialized, with Mathieu Debuchy looking a more likely arrival for the Gunners.Aurier has since rejected claims of an Arsenal agreement, telling Foot Mercato: “People say that there was an agreement for me to join Arsenal, that I had already signed.“That is not true. All that I can say is that England is the league I like the most. Things are clear. I have always preferred a move to England, because it is the league that suits me the best.“At the moment, I have not given my agreement to any club, whoever they might be and am therefore free to talk to whoever I want.”Ligue 1 outfits Paris Saint-Germain and Monaco are also rumoured to be interested in the 21-year-old’s signature, and while he does prefer England, Aurier admits it would be hard to turn down a move to either side.“To play in England is my dream, but sometimes dreams do not come true,” he added. “If PSG and Monaco are interested, one does not ignore them.“I have heard rumours of PSG’s interest in me. It is a very good club, one of the best in Europe.“It is a club that is part of the top eight in Europe and it is interesting to know that clubs with incredible resources to buy anybody are interested in me.“Also, I’m a Parisian, so that strengthens my sentiments. After that, I let the people around me deal with it.“PSG and Monaco can meet with my representatives and we will see what happens. What I want is a club where I have guarantees that I will play.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000LONDON, England, July 9- Toulouse full-back Serge Aurier has denied speculation he has agreed a deal with Arsenal, but admits he would like a move to the Premier League.It had been rumoured earlier in the off-season that the Ivory Coast international was set to move to the Emirates once his 2014 World Cup campaign was over.last_img read more

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Jazz sounds still in the air

first_img• Photo Gallery: 5/26: Jazz Party in Pasadena PASADENA – For 17 years, jazz melodies have ushered Pasadenans into summer, and this year – through a last-minute effort – will be no exception. Although the music-filled Pasadena Summer Fest was canceled, jazz found a home during the Memorial Day weekend at Paseo Colorado. There, in the Pasadena Jazz Institute’s new venue, about 70 patrons watched Saturday afternoon as musicians began the first of three days of the KTLA Jazz Party. “The musicianship is excellent,” said Altadena resident Upton Woodyard, who came with his wife, Julie. “It looks like they’re starting something really special here – we hope it continues,” he said of the club, which opened six months ago. Like the fledgling venue, the Jazz Party is the brainchild of the 5-year-old Jazz Institute’s founder, Paul Lines. But for the first time in many years, there almost wasn’t any jazz this weekend. “I realized it two weeks ago and got over 120 musicians together to donate their time and talent to keep Pasadena swinging,” Lines said. Lines has big ambitions for Pasadena jazz scene – he eagerly spoke of making the city the jazz capital of the world – and for the Jazz Party. “We want to make this is new Memorial Day tradition,” he said. Next year he hopes to expand the party to other areas of Paseo Colorado. But he might have competition – according to the Summer Fest Web site, organizers hope to find a new venue and reinstate the festival in 2008. For now though, it’s the Jazz Institute that has fingers and toes tapping – with one short interruption Saturday afternoon. Near the end of a set by the Ricky Woodard group, a fire alarm went off elsewhere in the complex, and patrons fled to the plaza outdoors to escape the noise. They all seemed to take it in stride, though. As the club emptied, the variations on the same refrain were heard throughout: “It was just too hot on stage – those guys were smoking.” The Jazz Party continues today at Paseo Colorado, 260 E. Colorado Blvd., Suite 206, from 2 p.m. to midnight and Monday from 2 to 9 p.m. elise.kleeman@sgvn.com (626) 578-6300, Ext. 4451160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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