Click here to subscribe to the Pharr Out BlogFor most tennis players (being one myself – in a previous life) it would be a dream to play on the same court with Jimmy Conners and John McEnroe; or for those basketball fans (forever calling myself a Carolina faithful) out there… imagine playing a game of HORSE with Michael Jordan and Larry Byrd. It isn’t often that fans are able to have contact with sport greats, at most avid followers are usually satiated and turned away with little more than an autograph. The trail is different.This week I was able to hike with two Appalachian Trail legends. At the beginning of the week I was joined in New York and New Jersey by trail running great, David Horton. Horton, as he is fondly called, was – and still is – a pioneer in the world of ultra running. In 1991 he set the record on the Appalachian Trail by running the path in 52 days… Amazing. I was lucky enough to meet Horton on my first thru-hike and after completing a handful of his insane ultra-races we have become good friends. After all, you know he must be a good friend if he came to run with me through the rocks that frequent if not engulf the trail in the mid-atlantic. Speaking of rocks, I wasn’t so happy with Horton with he decided to throw said stones at a large black bear 20 yards ahead of us on the trail… I mean the bear’s gonna move eventually, do we really need to throw things at him. AND THEN, the next morning he repeats his catapulting episode by beaning a skunk to see if he would spray! It might not have been my style but his verbose nature and constant antics sure made our 40-mile days fly by.Hiking in very high spirits after my visit with Horton, the highlight of Pennsylvania came in the form of one Warren Doyle. Warren has hiked the Appalachian Trail more than any other person – EVER. Currently he is wrapping up the final sections of his 15th thru-hike. That’s over 30,000 miles just on the AT. WOW! Warren was also a part of my original AT thru-hike and in the years since he has been a friend on the trail and at local contra-dances. He helped Brew and I while we planned for our hike this summer and it would have been nearly impossible to navigate the Maine wilderness without his help and maps. Warren hiked me out of the rocks in Pennsylvania and then took Brew and I to an all you can eat buffet. There we talked about the southern section of the trail, which is timely considering Brew and I passed the mid-way mark today and tomorrow we will be back below the Mason Dixie line. Yep, this is where my hike “goes south”… and I can’t wait.I am lucky to have such great friends and support on the trail, Warren and Horton in my mind are two of the most accomplished athletes I know and there accomplishments and service to the trail are incredible, but even as the legends come and go out of my life the best part of my hike is the day-to-day support and presence of my husband; cause when talking about the “greats”, he’s the greatest.
“My position is my position. Honestly, that’s the last worry I have at the moment. My worry is to focus, to get the team ready for tomorrow’s game.”The Frenchman defended the performance of his players at Wembley, where several were labelled as “spineless” and a “disgrace” by match commentator Neville as they were shown walking when out of possession.“You can always get out pictures from a game that justifies what you think, you find in every single game, on both sides, moments where a player doesn’t track,” he said.“After you have to analyse why, has he made two runs before to go in behind and was exhausted, or did he not track because he didn’t want to? That is different.“I believe we have to live with that criticism and respond together like we always do.“We didn’t play against a poor team in the semi-final, we played against Chelsea and we have shown that we can fight. You have to acknowledge as well that Man City are a quality team.”Wenger’s hopes of avenging the Wembley defeat have been further hit by the announcement that Nacho Monreal will miss the game through injury.The 32-year-old defender had been one of Arsenal’s better performers this season before a back injury forced him off less than half an hour into Sunday’s final.Share on: WhatsApp London, United Kingdom | AFP | Arsene Wenger on Wednesday said he was “amazed” at fresh speculation over his future as he prepares his team to face Manchester City just days after Arsenal’s League Cup final humiliation against Pep Guardiola’s men.The Frenchman has come under sustained fire since an abject display in Sunday’s 3-0 hammering at Wembley but must now lift his team to take on the Premier League leaders on Thursday.Arsenal’s season is threatening to unravel — they are 10 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League table and look set to miss out on Champions League football for a second consecutive year.They are out of the FA Cup and will face Italian giants AC Milan in the last 16 of the Europa League, which is their only remaining chance of winning a trophy this season.Arsenal’s limp display led to stinging criticism from former Manchester United and England defender Gary Neville as well as former Gunners Ian Wright and Thierry Henry.But Wenger, speaking at his pre-match press conference, responded with apparent shock when asked if the result meant his long tenure was now under increased threat.“I am just amazed that I have to always answer things that are exactly the same,” said the 68-year-old.“I am here for 21 years, I turned the whole world down to respect my contracts. So I am still amazed that I still have to answer these types of questions.
The city of Lake Worth Beach is laying off 5 city employees effective immediately, eliminating 35 jobs, and cutting $800,000 from its budget according to reports. For years, the city has been taking money from its city electric utility and using that money to run the city and not putting it back into the utility, and City Manager Michael Bornstein says something has to be done so that the city can upgrade its utility.“And we’re reversing 40-50 years of that benign neglect. If you’re not constantly maintaining and fixing and rebuilding and upgrading your electric utility, it’s deteriorating,” Bornstein said.The system is deteriorating power outages are common for customers in Lake Worth Beach.Dave Palombo owns Dave’s Last Resort and Raw Bar in downtown Lake Worth Beach.“It was bad. I mean we had power outages all the time, power surges, spikes, shorting out equipment,” Palombo told CBS12.The layoffs were effective yesterday, and the employees did not receive a severance package. “I was very surprised and a little disappointed. I had no warning. It came as a big surprise,” said Vickie Joslin, the city’s head librarian who was laid off from the city after 20 years on the job.
President Jacob Zuma puts the finishingtouches to his State of the Nation speech.(Image: The Presidency) Parliament’s National Assembly chamber.(Image: Wikimedia) The national guard of honour, welcomingparliamentarians to the precinct.(Image: Parliament)Janine ErasmusLess than a month after his inauguration, newly elected president Jacob Zuma delivered his first State of the Nation address at the opening of Parliament in Cape Town today.The State of the Nation address is an annual communication between the president and the people. It focuses on the current state of affairs and takes place at a joint sitting of the National Assembly or lower house of Parliament, and the National Council of Provinces, the upper house that replaced the senate in 1994.Members are called to the address by the president, through the Speaker of the National Assembly and the chair of the National Council of Provinces. The current Speaker is Max Sisulu of the African National Congress (ANC), assisted by his deputy Nomaindia Mfeketo, mayor of Cape Town from 2002 to 2006. Both were elected on 6 May 2009 after the ANC’s triumph in the 2009 general election.Susulu is the son of freedom stalwarts Walter and Albertina Sisulu. He is the first male to preside as Speaker in the democratic South Africa, and is the first black male ever to hold the position.The chair of the National Council of Provinces is Mninwa Johannes Mahlangu of the ANC, who has held the position since 2005.Zuma spoke to the nation as the head of state, not of the government. It is important to make the distinction because a government essentially is an element of state.The parliamentary theme for 2009 is “Parliament entrenching people-centred democracy in achieving development goals”. It signifies that Parliament aims to empower people, through public participation processes and law-making, to hold their leaders to their promises of good governance and service delivery.Pressing issuesAs expected, several pressing issues formed the focus of the president’s speech. Zuma touched on the priority areas of economy, health, sustainable resources management, job creation and skills development, crime, education, rural development, and regional integration and the promotion of the continent. All fall under the umbrella of government’s Medium Term Strategic Framework for 2009 to 2014.South Africa’s economy is in recession for the first time in 17 years. With workers’ unions increasingly restive and possible strikes on the horizon, Zuma hastened to assure the nation that government was not sitting idle but was implementing several measures to protect citizens.“It is more important now than ever that we work in partnership on a common programme to response to this crisis,” he said. “We must act now to minimise the impact of this downturn on those most vulnerable.”To fight the rising threat of job losses, the government has entered into an agreement, in principle, with social partners to introduce a training layoff. This means that workers who face retrenchment will not lose their jobs but will rather undergo training in new skills, or the enhancement of their existing skills.Zuma praised the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration, an independent statutory body, for their work in saving over 4 000 jobs through mediation, and for providing support for retrenched workers.He announced that the Department of Trade and Industry‘s Industrial Policy Action Plan will be intensified, with a number of sectors identified for targeted development. These include the automotive, chemicals, metal fabrication, tourism, clothing and textiles, and forestry sectors.Job creation in other sectors such as services and light manufacturing and construction will also receive attention.Government’s Expanded Public Works Programme is another strategy focusing on job creation through temporary work opportunities in infrastructure development, environmental affairs, and social and community programmes.The Department of Public Works took just four years to reach its initial target of a million new jobs, a full year ahead of schedule. The even more ambitious phase two will see 4-million people find meaningful employment by 2014, with 500 000 of those in place by December 2009.Amongst the unemployed, the social grant system remains the most effective form of poverty alleviation, said Zuma. More than 30-million citizens, of whom 8-million are children, receive social grants. It is important, he added, to link social grants to job opportunities and thus encourage self-reliance amongst the able-bodied.Through state tasks such as procurement, financial support and licensing, government plans to support small and medium sized businesses and promote the continued implementation of its policy of black economic empowerment. Much of the focus will remain on women, youth and the disabled.Zuma was adamant that the global economic downturn would not alter the forward motion of South Africa’s development.Infrastructure developmentGovernment’s second priority is that of infrastructure development. Zuma referred to the new Infrastructure Development Cluster that will keep a close eye on the proper use of the US$98-billion (R787-billion) allocated for infrastructure expenditure.Schools, housing, water and sanitation, and public transport including bus rapid transport systems, are all due for a slice of the pie. The biggest infrastructure investment is in the 2010 Fifa World Cup, with billions already spent on upgrading roads, airports, stadiums, and hospitality.“We pledged that the World Cup will leave a proud legacy for our children and communities,” said Zuma, “and we are on track to meet all obligations. South Africa will deliver the best World Cup ever.”All systems are in place for the Confederations Cup, which kicks off in mid-June. The president expects the World Cup forerunner to be a huge success.The taxi industry has recently demonstrated its protest against the bus rapid transport systems which are currently under construction in Johannesburg and Cape Town. Zuma had promised outraged taxi drivers that he would defer discussions until after the April election. Negotiations would resume on 11 June, he said, expressing his confidence that all parties will be satisfied with the outcome.Another important project is the continued roll-out of digital broadcasting infrastructure. Government planned to ensure that the cost of telecommunications is reduced through a number of projects already underway, such as the construction of major undersea cables, to expand the country’s broadband capacity. He was emphatic that rural areas be included in broadband coverage.Housing remains a top priority, but building caring communities is just as important as building houses, said Zuma, and ensuring that people have access to social amenities including sport and recreation.Zuma announced that government and Parliament would work together to speed up the processing of the Land Use Management Bill, which will see the establishment of a new operating framework for land use management, at national, provincial and municipal levels.Rural developmentMoving on to the next priority, that of rural development, Zuma said that such development and reform must be linked to food security. The Greater Giyane municipality in Limpopo is the first area to undergo development under the government’s campaign, and will serve as an example for the whole country.Schemes such as the Neighbourhood Development Grant programme will allow not only the towns, but the areas around them to experience a surge in their economies.EducationA key priority for the next five years, the ongoing development of South Africa’s schools will see them grow into models of excellence. Another task is to ensure that all preschool children have access to Grade R, the reception year.Zuma called on all teachers and pupils to set examples of good behaviour. Children should do their homework and respect their teachers, while teachers should not neglect their duty towards their charges.The Department of Education has embarked on a campaign to encourage all pupils to complete at least their secondary education. The department aims to increase enrolment in secondary schools to 95% by 2014, at the same time bringing back pupils who dropped out, and supporting them through their remaining secondary school years.Swift and harsh consequences will fall on those who abuse their authority through sexual harassment or violence towards pupils, especially girls.The Kha ri Gude adult literacy programme was introduced in early 2008 with the aim of teaching 4.7-million adults to read and write by the end of 2012. The Department of Education, said Zuma, plans to intensify the campaign and deepen its reach.HealthcareThe president expressed his regret for the deterioration in quality of healthcare and increase in disease, and committed his government to the reduction of the current inequalities in healthcare provision, in line with the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.Zuma pledged to revitalise hospitals and clinics, providing the facilities to intensify the fight against HIV, Aids, and tuberculosis.The implementation of a comprehensive plan for the treatment and management of HIV and Aids was paramount, with the target of a 50% reduction in the number of new infections by 2011. In the same time frame, antiretroviral medication would be provided to at least 80% of those who need the treatment.Zuma alluded briefly to the recent doctors’ strike over pay, when he promised to give attention to the remuneration of health professionals.CrimeThe reformation of the criminal justice system, said Zuma, is a major factor in the fight against crime, and would result in more efficient courts and prosecutors. Efforts have already begun to boost detective, forensic and intelligence services.The newly-established Ministry of Police emphasises the fact that government means business. The target for the reduction of violent crimes is between 7 and 10% per year. Government has met this target consistently but, said Zuma, more needs to be done.Organised crime and crimes against women and children are also to receive the new ministry’s full attention. Among other initiatives, Zuma mentioned the establishment of a border management agency, greater efforts to eradicate cyber crime and identity theft, and improved rehabilitation systems in the country’s jails to cut down on the number of repeat offenders.In the move towards a crime-free society, judicial independence and accountability, and full access to justice for all were imperative. Zuma reiterated government’s commitment to stamping out corruption in the public sector, but he also called on citizens to play their part in fighting crime by participating in community policing forums, not buying stolen goods, and reporting crime.National prideUnity in diversity, said Zuma, would move the nation forward and build a common national identity, giving citizens the motivation to be more active in the renewal of South Africa. It was vital that children know all about the national symbols and the constitution, as that knowledge would equip them for growth into productive South Africans.Sport is a powerful tool for nation-building. South Africans must support all their national teams, said Zuma, including the Proteas, Bafana Bafana, the Springboks, Banyana Banyana and the paraplegic team.He took a moment to congratulate those national teams who have done the country proud in recent weeks. The women’s netball team took top honours in the tri-nation challenge against Fiji and Botswana. The Springbok Sevens rugby team are the reigning world champions. The Blue Bulls won the fiercely-contested Super 14 rugby tournament.Investment on a large scale in sports development would promote the already substantial national pride in sport, as would the inclusion of sport in the school curriculum.PartnershipsThe main goal of government, said the president, is to ensure that foreign relations contribute to the ongoing climate of sustained growth and development. Support of African Union initiatives, as well as those implemented by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, will ensure that the African continent remains a priority.South Africa has a proud record in peace-keeping efforts and mediation on the continent, and will continue to uphold the principles of democracy and human rights. Elsewhere, the country will not hesitate to assist with reconstruction, especially in post-conflict situations. Here Zuma specifically mentioned the Israeli-Palestine conflict.Closer to home, Zuma acknowledged that the crisis in Zimbabwe had taken a toll on the southern African region, and especially South Africa. He called on all peace-loving countries to support the new Zimbabwean regime as it worked for economic recovery.Era of renewalIn the current era of renewal, the Presidency would lead by example in the field of public liaison. Not only would letters and emails be welcomed, said the president, but each one would be handled as if it were the only one. Citizens could also look forward to the establishment of a hotline.Zuma concluded his address with the announcement of a new South African public holiday. To celebrate esteemed elder statesman Nelson Mandela, who turns 91 in June, 18 May is to be known as Mandela Day. The president encouraged people to devote at least 67 minutes of their time on that day to helping others – one minute for each year of Mandela’s political career.“Madiba taught us that this country belongs to all, black and white,” said Zuma. “Working for reconciliation and unity will remain important as we move forward. Fellow South Africans, working together we can do more to realise our common vision of a better and more prosperous nation!”AuspiciousThe State of the Nation address was followed by a debate in the joint sitting, where political parties were encouraged to give their opinions and ask questions.The opening of Parliament is always an auspicious occasion, and something of a style parade, although it was not always so. During the apartheid regime the public image of Parliament was grey and dour, with politicians vying with each other to see who could be the most nondescript.The inauguration of Nelson Mandela as South Africa’s first democratically elected leader changed the face of Parliament forever. By wearing his famous Madiba shirt, with its loose styling and colourful patterns, inside the hallowed chamber, Mandela did away with the greyness and brought glamour and style into Parliament. Despite its casual appearance, the Madiba shirt is accepted as formal wear.Today members are seen in outfits that range from traditional attire to the highest couture, in every colour of the Rainbow nation. Whatever the religious or tribal affiliation, Parliament has seen an outfit to match. Every year fashion aficionados carefully scrutinise the crowds to identify which trends to follow for the season.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Contact Janine Erasmus at [email protected] articlesSA celebrates new presidentDrive to create a million jobsR4-billion for 4.5-million jobsUseful linksParliament of South AfricaThe PresidencyDepartment of Public WorksCommission for Conciliation, Mediation and ArbitrationIndustrial Policy Action Plan (pdf)Expanded Public Works ProgrammeGreater Giyani municipality
Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC “Our work is not over,” conceded Moir, who despite his vast experience — this is his third Olympics — admitted to an attack of the jitters as the music for their routine began.“I was pretty nervous today, but I was able to look into Tessa’s eyes and squeeze her hand, she was a rock today, I needed that.”The pair were ice dance champions in Vancouver in 2010 but in Sochi four years ago Virtue and Moir, who joined forces way back in 1997, were edged out of defending their title by their then training partners Meryl Davis and Charlie White.They then took two years out, switched coaches, and returned better than ever, claiming their second world title at the expense of Papadakis and Cizeron in Helsinki last year.Having taken silver in the team event in Sochi too they helped Canada turn that into gold in Pyeongchang last week, and are now — barring disaster — certain to claim a record fifth figure skating medal.For Moir, the Olympic experience is truly awe-inspiring.“At this point in our career we have a better grasp of what it’s like to skate with the (Olympic) rings on the ice.“This is what the spirit of the Games is all about.“We have a lot of work to do tomorrow, the butterflies will be flying again, that’s the beauty of the Olympics, with all the country watching back home, we are trying to make them proud.”While the Canadians are out in front their French rivals will fancy their chances of overhauling them in the free dance. MOST READ Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:35U.S. urges Japan, South Korea to share intel00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City “It was pretty distracting, my worst nightmare at the Olympics,” the 22-year-old Papadakis said.“I felt it right away and I prayed.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“I told myself ‘you have to keep going’ and that’s what we did, and we have to be proud of ourselves, delivering a great performance with that happening.”A great performance it was with the Olympic debutants’ samba-rhumba-samba to two Ed Sheeran hits earning them 81.93 to go into Tuesday’s free dance final just behind the Canadians. Read Next The first ice dancers to break the 200 points barrier last year produced a best ever combined score of 203.16 at the European Championships in Moscow last month, suggesting an epic free dance battle is in store on Tuesday. LATEST STORIES Lying in the bronze medal position in this discipline likened to ballroom dancing on ice were Americans Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue.Remarkably, all three couples are coached at the same centre of skating excellence in Montreal run by Marie-France Dubreuil and her husband Patrice Lauzon.After bettering the record they themselves had set of 82.68, Virtue commented: “Better than setting the record was the feeling we had when the music ended, we were able to look at each other and take a moment and feel that pride, knowing that we had to have a strong skate today.”‘Butterflies’Despite their show-stopping samba-rhumba-cha performance to the Rolling Stones and the Eagles’ Hotel California a second ice dance title is by no means in the bag for Scott and Moir as Papadakis and Cizeron could well overtake them if they produce their best free dance.ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH James wins 3rd All-Star Game MVP Canada’s Tessa Virtue and Canada’s Scott Moir compete in the ice dance short dance of the figure skating event during the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at the Gangneung Ice Arena in Gangneung on February 19, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Mladen ANTONOVCanada’s Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir smashed the short dance world record as French rival Gabriella Papadakis suffered “my worst nightmare” with a wardrobe malfunction at the Olympics on Monday.As Virtue and Moir glided, twizzled and spun their way to a best-ever score of 83.67, Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron performed stoically in the face of the embarrassment of her dress becoming unclipped early in their routine, exposing a breast.ADVERTISEMENT Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH AFP official booed out of forum NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. 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What ‘missteps’? PH triathletes aim for SEAG golden sweep Powered by the core of University of the East, the Iron Lady Warriors suffered a straight-set loss to Foton (21-25, 16-25, 17-25) Tuesday night, while the Asset Managers bowed to Generika-Ayala (14-25, 25-23, 15-25, 14-25).Petron will also have Marivic Meneses, Ria Duremdes, Mina Aganon, Aiza Maizo-Pontillas, Remy Palma, Bernadeth Pons and Bang Pineda.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Every 18 seconds someone is diagnosed with HIV BSP survey: PH banks see bright horizon amid dark global recession clouds “Yes, we are strong on paper. We [have a] talented lineup. But it’s up to us to work together and be cohesive on the court,” said Tunay, who is one of the Blaze Spikers’ star players.She will have to form one cohesive unit with fellow big names Mika Reyes, Ces Molina, Cherry Rondina and Rhea Dimaculangan, to name a few.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutPetron debuts Thursday against F2 Logistics in the main game at 7 p.m. at FilOil Flying V Arena in San Juan.Cignal and Sta. Lucia open the triple-header at 3 p.m., while opening-day losers Cherrylume and Cocolife collide at 5 p.m. Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ MOST READ Palace: Duterte to hear out security execs on alleged China control of NGCP Carmela Tunay of Petron goes for a kill against Mylene Paat (L) and May Macatuno of Cignal. INQUIRER PHOTO/ Sherwin VardeleonCarmela Tunay admits that her team Petron has become a “super team” in the Philippine Superliga All Filipino Conference—but only on paper.The highly popular open spiker said the task of translating their strong lineup on the court depended on the players themselves.ADVERTISEMENT BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast LATEST STORIES Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games View comments
India defeated New Zealand by 7 wickets in the second Twenty20 International at Eden Park in Auckland to level the three-T20I series 1-1 on Friday.The win was India’s first T20I win in the New Zealand as India’s two leading wicket-keeper batsmen took the visiting side to victory.The pair of Rishabh Pant and MS Dhoni worked well together, a rather symbolic handing over of the gaurd, with the veteran guided the youngster in India’s chase.Harbhajan Singh was full of praise for young Pant, saying that his knock like these will go a long way in making a strong case for his inclusion in the World Cup squad.”Rishabh Pant made full use of his opportunity today and batting with MS Dhoni,” Harbhajan told Aaj Tak.”When he hit a few casual shots, Dhoni walked up to him and explained what he needed to do. After that he played safer shots, down the ground and hit only the balls which were there to be hit,” Harbhajan said.”Every opportunity will take Pant closer to the World Cup squad, especially if he continues to keep scoring like this. I fell he has that X factor which India will need in the World Cup. Pant is someone who can change games,” Harbhajan added.Harbhajan Singh also lauded the Indian cricket team’s win, praising the teams resolve after the loss in the previous game.”It is very big win for India and with that the series is also level at 1-1. It is great sign and I feel overall India played good cricket. There was improvement from the previous T20I,” Harbhajan said.advertisementHarbhajan credited India bowlers and especially Krunal Pandya for his man-of-the-match performance of 3 wickets off just 28 runs from fours over.”In my opinion, the bowlers should get the credit for the win. The way they bowled.. Krunal Pandya made a brilliant effort,” Harbhajan said.Harbhajan though had special mention for Rohit Sharma, who again led from the front. “Rohit Sharma’s innings was spectacular.. he batted really well,” Harbhajan said.”Must give credit to Rohit Sharma for his batting as well as his captaincy. There was lot of improvement in the team from the previous game, the bowling changes were spot on and the bowlers themselves did their job perfectly,” Harbhajan added.Rohit became the joint second on the list of India captains with most wins in T20I cricket along with regular captain Virat Kohli. On the personal front, Rohit became the leading run-scorer in T20Is.Rohit’s 29-ball 50 left Harbhajan short of words.”I have run out of adjectives to praise Rohit Sharma’s batting. He doesn’t get affected by pace, there was swing as well today and there was bounce too. Rohit batted masterfully and gave India the perfect start,” Harbhajan said.When asked about how the series might pan out, Harbhajan said, “Now the series is becoming fun as it level. India will play cricket like this in Hamilton and win the series 2-1.”Also Read | Nathan McCullum overwhelmed by Eden Park atmosphere: Felt like I was in IndiaAlso Read | We learnt from our mistakes: Rohit Sharma after historic T20I win over New ZealandAlso Read | India’s openers took the game away from us, says Kane Williamson
There was plenty of Touch Football action to be seen on NRL Grand Final day at ANZ Stadium on Sunday. The Australian Women’s Open team commenced Grand Final day proceedings when they took to the field to showcase the sport against a team comprised of media identities, including Brett Finch and Matt Shirvington. The girls impressed the building crowd with their skills and ran out easy winners in their match. The focus then shifted to a special announcement, with Touch Football Australia and the National Rugby League announcing Harvey Norman as the new major sponsor for the NRL Touch Football product. To read more about this please click on the ‘related news’ section below. A key feature outside of the stadium saw a large Touch Football presence, with two live sites running all day for arriving crowds. Hundreds of children, and even adults, had their go at playing games of Touch Football or trying their luck at the passing targets throughout the day. Sydney Roosters mascot, Rocky and the Penrith Panthers’ Paws also had a run, proving that our great sport caters for everyone! To view some photos from the day, please visit the Touch Football Australia social media pages:Facebook – www.facebook.com/touchfootballaustraliaTwitter – www.twitter.com/touchfootyaus Instagram – www.instagram.com/touchfootballaustralia Stay tuned to the TFA YouTube channel for highlights from the day – www.youtube.com/touchfootballaus. Related LinksNRL Grand Final
New Delhi: Ahead of his visit to France, the UAE and Bahrain, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said the engagements will strengthen India’s relations with time-tested friends and help explore new areas of cooperation.Modi will visit the three countries from August 22 to 26. He will reach France on Thursday.In his departure statement, the prime minister said his visit to France reflects the strong strategic partnership which the two countries deeply value and share. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsFrom August 22-23, he will have bilateral meetings in France, including a summit interaction with President Emmanuel Macron and a meeting with Prime Minister Edouard Philippe.Modi will also interact with the Indian community and dedicate a memorial to the Indian victims of the two Air India crashes in France in the 1950s and 1960s.Later, from August 25-26, he will participate in the G7 Summit meetings as Biarritz Partner at the invitation of President Macron in the sessions on Environment, Climate, Oceans and on Digital Transformation. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday”India and France have excellent bilateral ties, which are reinforced by a shared vision to cooperate for further enhancing peace and prosperity for our two countries and the world at large,” the prime minister said.He said the strong strategic and economic partnership is complemented by a shared perspective on major global concerns such as terrorism and climate change.”I am confident that this visit will further promote our long-standing and valued friendship with France for mutual prosperity, peace and progress,” Modi said. During the visit to the United Arab Emirates from August 23-24, the prime minister said he looks forward to discuss with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan the entire gamut of bilateral relations and regional and international issues of mutual interest.Modi said he also looks forward to jointly release the stamp to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi along with the Crown Prince.”It will be an honour to receive the ‘Order of Zayed’, the highest civilian decoration conferred by the UAE government, during this visit. I will also formally launch RuPay card to expand the network of cashless transactions abroad,” the prime minister said in the statement.Frequent high-level interactions between India and the UAE testify to our vibrant relations, he said.The UAE is the third-largest trade partner and fourth-largest exporter of crude oil for India, he said.”The qualitative enhancement of these ties is among one of our foremost foreign policy achievements. The visit would further strengthen our multifaceted bilateral ties with the UAE,” Modi said.The prime minister will be in Bahrain from August 24-25. This will be the first ever prime ministerial visit from India to the Kingdom.”I look forward to discussing with Prime Minister Prince Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa the ways to further boost our bilateral relations and share views on regional and international issues of mutual interest,” Modi said.The prime minister would also be meeting King of Bahrain Shaikh Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and other leaders.”I would also take the opportunity to interact with the Indian diaspora. I will be blessed to be present at the formal beginning of the re-development of the temple of Shreenathji – the oldest in the Gulf region in the wake of the auspicious festival of Janmashtami. I am confident that this visit would further deepen our relationship across the sectors,” Modi said.