Aug 202017
 
BMC win opening stage at heavily guarded Vuelta

NIMES, France: BMC Racing emerged victors from Saturday’s team time trial as the Vuelta a Espana got under way under heightened security measures following two terrorist attacks in northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia. For just the third time the Vuelta started outside Spain in the southern French city of Nimes as American team BMC beat out Quick-Step Floors and Team Sunweb by six seconds in a time of 15mins 58secs for the 13.7km route with Australian Rohan Dennis taking the leader’s red jersey. Pre-race favourite Chris Froome’s Sky team finished fourth a further three seconds back, but that was still enough for Froome to gain some early ground on his rivals in the general classification. “We executed it perfectly,” said Dennis. “The circuit was very technical, there was a bit of a hill, there was speed and you needed everything so we showed our true power as a team.” The threat of terror overshadowed the start of cycling’s third Grand Tour of the season after 13 people were killed when a van ploughed into packed crowds on Barcelona’s famous Las Ramblas on Thursday. Attackers struck again in the early hours of Friday morning in Cambrils, 120 kilometres south of Barcelona, where a car rammed into pedestrians, killing one person.After two more stages in France and the tiny Principality of Andorra, the race enters Spain on Tuesday in Tarragona, just 20 kilometres along the Mediterranean coast from Cambrils. However, the race got off to a gentle start in picturesque surroundings with [Read More…]

Aug 082017
 
Dutch city turns orange as women toast Euro win

Thousands of orange-clad fans flooded the central Dutch city of Utrecht on Monday to celebrate the Netherlands’ first women’s Euro title, a much-needed win to boost the football-mad country’s flagging fortunes.The first “Lioness” supporters — many of them young women and girls — scurried past as the gates opened to secure a prime spot in a local park where their heroins appeared later on Monday evening.The team arrived in an orange-coloured boat which toured the city’s canals amid the cheering of thousands of onlookers who crowded the banks along the way, some even jumping into the canal to get closer to the team.“It’s amazing, they are my heroes,” Elena, 8, dressed in a Dutch football shirt and orange blow-up crown told AFP.Arriving too late at the park in central Utrecht where 12,500 fans were already crammed in to see the team, Elena had to be content watching the celebration on a big-screen television.Inside, the players were called one-by-one onto the podium, while the crowd chanted “we are the champions!”. “It’s imply incredible, unbelievable. I have no words to describe this. It’s just not normal,” Dutch and Arsenal women’s goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal told the NOS national newscaster on the boat.“I didn’t sleep much last night,” added a beaming national coach Sarina Wiegman.The Dutch women’s team beat Denmark 4-2 on Sunday to become only the fourth team to lift the trophy after eight-time champions Germany, two-time winners Norway and Sweden, who won the first edition in 1984.The Dutch win is a [Read More…]

Jul 102017
 
Wimbledon heavyweights braced for ?Manic Monday?

LONDON: For the first time since 2011, the top four men´s seeds have reached the Wimbledon last-16 with Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal taking centre-stage on ´Manic Monday´.The four stars have shared the Wimbledon title since 2003 when Federer won the first of his seven trophies at the All England Club.Djokovic has claimed three with defending champion Murray and Nadal winning two apiece.It´s the kind of domination that looks unlikely to end Monday when the fourth round takes place.Murray, who has battled hip pain, is the only one of the ´Big Four´ to have dropped a set in the first week.He faces unpredictable Frenchman Benoit Paire who is in the last-16 for the first time.“He has very good hands, moves well, takes a lot of chances, goes for his shots,” said Murray who has a 1-0 career lead over Paire.Murray has not lost at Wimbledon before the quarter-finals since 2006. Murray faces unpredictable Frenchman Benoit Paire who is in the last-16 for the first timeDjokovic takes a 1-0 career edge over unseeded Adrian Mannarino of France into his last-16 clash, with that win coming at Wimbledon in straight sets in the second round last year.Former coach Boris Becker praised Djokovic for his first week performances after fears that the Serb had lost his love for the sport after losing all four Grand Slam titles he held last year.“Boris knows me very well. So he´s right when he says that the passion is back,” said second seed [Read More…]

Jun 302017
 
A thunderstorm through the sky

In 1942, people of France started a very strong and effective movement called ‘the resistance movement’. The movement was started when France was occupied by the Germans during World War II. Thousands of people took part in the movement and fought for their freedom. At that time, Britain was among the strongest supporters of this freedom movement. The most terrible acts committed by this movement against the occupied forces in France can teach a thing or two to the current freedom fighters of Kashmir. The entire free world supported the French Resistance. The Kashmir freedom fight is no different. Then why did the two leaders of the so-called ‘greatest democracies’ declare one of the Kashmiri freedom fighters, Syed Salahuddin, a terrorist. These two leaders need to go back and do some homework and learn the meaning of the Freedom Movement which the free world proudly called the French Resistance during World War II. Asad A Khan London Click for detailed story

Jun 272017
 
FIFA discloses damaging Qatar World Cup bid report

Former FIFA boss Joseph “Sepp” Blatter leaves a press conference wherein he announced stepping down from his post. Zurich, Switzerland. June 3, 2015. AFP/Valeriano Di Domenico LAUSANNE: FIFA on Tuesday released a long-withheld report on alleged corruption in awarding the 2022 World Cup to Qatar after more leaks deepened the controversy surrounding the vote.World football’s governing body had previously declined to publish in full the 400-page report into awarding the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 edition to Qatar drawn up by US independent investigator Michael Garcia.But FIFA’s hand was forced when German tabloid newspaper Bild said it had obtained the full report and released extracts on Monday, including revelations that a 10-year-old daughter of one FIFA member had received $2 million in her bank account.FIFA said it was already considering releasing in full Garcia’s findings prior to the latest disclosures.“However, as the document has been illegally leaked to a German newspaper, the new chairpersons (of the committee) have requested the immediate publication of the full report… in order to avoid the dissemination of any misleading information,” FIFA explained in a statement on its website. FIFA corruption fight ‘setback’ by ethics team purge It is a controversial decision as critics have accused FIFA president “For the sake of transparency, FIFA welcomes the news that this report has now been finally published.”Garcia had resigned as head of FIFA’s investigatory body in December 2014 in protest after the association released a 40-page sanitised summary of his report, which he disowned, describing [Read More…]

Jun 152017
 
French sensation Mbappe surprised by meteoric rise

PARIS: At just 18 years of age, Kylian Mbappe is the hottest property in football and the French sensation admits that he has been surprised by how quickly his star has risen. “I always had lots of imagination when I was little, so I am not going to say that I hadn’t imagined it,” Mbappe told AFP in an interview when asked if he expected to have won a league title and become a full international at such a young age. “I imagined succeeding early, but I didn’t really think things would happen so quickly. “Of course I always believed. The players who have succeeded in their careers are the ones who believed in themselves.” Billed as the new Thierry Henry, Mbappe made his top-flight debut for Monaco in December 2015 when still aged just 16, but it is in the last six months that he has gone from a player of great promise to one of the biggest stars in Europe. He scored 15 goals to help Monaco win a first French title since 2000 and won his first cap for France in March. He is now being linked to mega-money moves to one of the continent’s biggest sides this close season, with Real Madrid leading the chase alongside the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool and both Manchester clubs. On Tuesday, he earned his fourth cap for Les Bleus, starring in a 3-2 friendly victory over England in front of almost 80,000 fans at the Stade de France The following [Read More…]

Jun 132017
 
France honours terror victims as Macron, May attend England friendly

Thousands of French football fans joined in with the English national anthem as tribute was paid to the victims of recent terror attacks in the United Kingdom prior to a friendly match in Paris on Tuesday evening.The words to ‘God Save the Queen’ were displayed on big screens around the Stade de France before France’s meeting with England, allowing the French spectators in the crowd of close to 80,000 to sing along with their English counterparts.A minute’s silence was impeccably observed by the crowd, after the teams had come out to ‘Don’t Look Back in Anger’, the song by Manchester group Oasis which was played by the band and choir of the French Republican Guard.They were ably backed up by around 2,500 travelling English fans in one corner of the ground on a balmy night in the French capital.That song was seen as an anthem for Manchester after the English city was hit by a suicide bombing at the end of an Ariana Grande concert last month which claimed 22 lives.Another eight people, including three French nationals, were also murdered in a terror attack in London on June 3.An English flag was displayed by a section of the Stade de France crowd as the teams entered the field. Underneath the display was a banner reading: “United with the Cities of Manchester and London”. The match kicked off around five minutes later than the scheduled 9pm (1900 GMT) start, after French President Emmanuel Macron and British Prime Minister Theresa May had [Read More…]

Jun 092017
 
The Paris agreement

The Paris agreement on climate change has set out a global action plan to combat the dangerous effects of climate change. The agreement wants to limit global warming below 2 degrees Celsius. Combating global warming is necessary. Over the past few years, the irreversible effects of global warming are being faced by many countries. Global warming has caused great damage to the food production, clean water sources and energy production. Therefore, it is essential that every country takes serious steps to mitigate the global warming effects. According to the agreement, each country pledges to contribute to combat climate change. Countries, including China, the UK, Egypt, France and Germany, have pledged to make changes to their policies in accordance with the best available science, in the hopes of reducing their overall emissions to a long-term goal of zero-net emissions overall – known as carbon neutrality. The agreement imposes a climate tax on countries that are responsible for polluting the world’s environment. Although the standard rate is $150 per tonne of carbon dioxide emitted, the tax will be higher if a country fails to reduce its overall emissions. Shanza Ali Karachi Click for detailed story

May 312017
 
Modi urges Spanish firms to invest in India

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday urged Spanish firms to invest in India, saying the fast-growing country offered “many opportunities” in areas ranging from tourism to energy. “India is an enormous country and it offers many opportunities to Spanish firms in all sectors,” he said in Hindi as he arrived at Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's official residence in Madrid for talks. “I invite Spanish firms to participate in our development,” he added. Modi, who arrived in Spain late on Tuesday from Germany, his first stop on a four-nation Europe tour, was scheduled to meet with King Felipe VI later on Wednesday. He was also to meet Spanish business leaders as part of his push to drum up more foreign investment in India, the world's fastest-growing major economy. “Spanish firms are global leaders in sectors that are a priority for us. We want to attract tourism, infrastructure, energy and defence firms,” Modi said in an interview published in Spanish business daily Expansion. Spain is India's seventh largest trading partner in the European Union. Two-way trade totalled 4.72 billion euros ($5.27 billion) in 2016, an 8.5 percent increase over the previous year, of which Spanish exports made up nearly 1.26 billion euros. The number of Spanish firms that operate in India has risen to over 230 currently from just 70 in 2008. “Our bilateral relations are becoming more and more intense. I hope this visit spurs deeper ties between our two countries,” Rajoy said. It is the first visit by [Read More…]

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