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Dhawala is Himachal pro tem Speaker

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first_imgSenior BJP leader and MLA from the politically important district of Kangra, Ramesh Dhawala, who could not make it to the Cabinet, was made the pro tem Speaker of the Himachal Pradesh Assembly. He was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Acharya Dev Vrat. Chief Minister Jairam Thakur and his Cabinet colleagues including Civil Supplies Minister Kishan Kapoor, Education Minister Suresh Bhardwaj and Health Minister Vipin Parmar were present at the ceremony.Mr. Dhawala was a Cabinet Minister in the Prem Kumar Dhumal government from 1998 to 2003. He had then won as an independent candidate (BJP rebel) and was instrumental in the formation of the first BJP government.last_img

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The money chase, 2016: New head of key House science spending panel likes limited government, unlimited exploration

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first_imgNext week, the Obama administration will kick off the annual U.S. budget process by sending Congress its spending request for the 2016 fiscal year that begins in October. Researchers will be watching the 2 February budget rollout carefully to see where science ranks in the White House’s priorities. But the request is just the beginning, because Congress determines final spending levels in a process that isn’t likely to be finalized until late in the year.This week, ScienceInsider is running a few stories that offer varying perspectives on the process of setting science budgets—and the people involved. On Friday, we’ll follow the money and look at some of the numbers. Tomorrow, we’ll meet Representative Tom Cole (R–OK), a Ph.D. historian who is the new head of a House of Representatives spending panel that oversees the budget of the National Institutes of Health, the major government funder of basic biomedical research. Today, we meet another House appropriations “cardinal,” a lawyer and science enthusiast who is overseeing NASA, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and other key research agencies.    Space exploration is not in the U.S. Constitution. But “promoting the progress of science” is. That makes it easy for Representative John Culberson (R–TX) to reconcile his allegiance to the 10th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution—which states that all powers not vested in the federal government are reserved for the states—with his passionate support for multibillion-dollar scientific missions to distant objects, such as Jupiter’s moon Europa.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)As the new chair of the Commerce, Justice, and Science (CJS), and Related Agencies spending panel in the U.S. House of Representatives, what Culberson thinks matters a great deal to the U.S. scientific community. That’s because CJS oversees a good chunk of nondefense, nonmedical federal research; its jurisdiction includes NASA, the NSF, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Institute of Standards and Technology within the Commerce Department.Last week, Culberson, 58, sat down with ScienceInsider in his Capitol Hill office to discuss his love affair with science, his commitment to small government, and the relationship between the legislative and executive branches. A lawyer and former Texas state representative, the seven-term congressman represents a staunchly conservative district in west Houston, where he grew up.The search for lifeCulberson and Europa go back a long time. He’s been captivated by the jovian moon ever since he viewed it through his classic Celestron 8 telescope, a high school graduation present to himself. As an undergraduate, he was wowed when NASA’s Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft sent back pictures of its vast frozen oceans during a 1979 flyby.“You could see the cracks—it looked like the Arctic ice cap on Earth,” he gushes.A quarter-century later, a few years after he was elected to Congress in 2000, he visited NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, just as the lab’s Opportunity rover landed on Mars. But for Culberson, the highlight of his January 2004 trip was a briefing on a proposed Europa mission by the project scientist for Galileo, which had orbited Jupiter in the 1990s and bolstered the theory that there is a liquid ocean under Europa’s thick ice shell.“That’s when it all gelled for me,” Culberson recalls. “All the light bulbs went off in my head, and it made spectacular good sense.”As a new member on the appropriations panel he now chairs, Culberson went back to Washington and proposed that NASA begin planning that next mission, called Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter (JIMO). The money was allocated, but the next year the agency canceled JIMO, pleading poverty.Culberson cares deeply about Europa because he believes it could be harboring extraterrestrial life. “I think it’s inevitable that one day, and I hope it’s in our lifetime, we will discover life in another world,” he says. “And the place mostly likely to find it is in the Europan oceans. It keeps me up at night just thinking about it, it’s so thrilling.”But “Europa needs an advocate,” he says. And it now has a well-placed one, with Culberson taking over CJS from the retired Representative Frank Wolf (R–VA). Culberson gave up leading a panel that funds veterans affairs and military construction to take what he calls “his dream job,” and for work he describes as “pure joy.”“Europa is the only mission that it’s illegal for NASA not to fly,” he says, pointing proudly to language he and Wolf crafted as part of the agency’s 2015 budget, which allocates “not less than $100 million” for planning the mission and developing related technologies. The agency’s current plan is a so-called clipper mission that would make 45 passes of the moon while orbiting Jupiter, and then drop a probe that would penetrate Europa’s surface and explore its frozen underworld. The goal is to launch it sometime in the next decade, ideally on NASA’s new heavy-lift rocket.The Europa mission has other allies, including Representative Adam Schiff (D–CA), whose district includes JPL, and the nonprofit Planetary Society, now led by science education celebrity Bill Nye. Last summer, at a Capitol Hill pep rally for Europa sponsored by the society, Culberson thanked the group for “lighting a fire under the American people.”Europa “is one of the most exciting and meaningful things I’ve ever worked on,” he said. He also described to an audience of space buffs how much he thinks is at stake. “That moment when we realize that we are not alone will be a transformational moment, just like when Columbus reached the shores of North America.”Nye is thrilled to have Culberson as any ally. “He quotes the Bible and he believes that a higher power has put life on other worlds,” he says. “He wants to find it on his watch. And he’s in a position to convince other people in Congress.”Subcommittee chairs are in a good position to make things happen, Wolf agrees. “That’s the reason to be the chairman, isn’t it?” Wolf tells ScienceInsider. “Wherever he wants to take the subcommittee, that’s where it will go.”Limited governmentCulberson says that he’s been interested in science “for as long as I can remember.” He recalls a family vacation to Meteor crater in northern Arizona spent trolling for iron filings with a magnet on a string. As a child he subscribed to several popular science and astronomy magazines, following their recipes to build cloud chambers and a carbon dioxide laser for school science fairs. Spending summers during college as a mud logger on an oil rig—preparing a log that characterized the rock formation based on mud samples coming to the surface—gave him a chance “to be sort of a well-site geologist.”Culberson can’t recall a particular teacher that influenced his scientific studies. “I was pretty much self-directed,” he says. And the only science he took at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, where he graduated in 1981 with a history degree, was an introductory astronomy course “that was so basic it was kinda boring.”He chose law instead, following the advice of his grandfather, a probate lawyer. “He said it was a way to help folks, and to make a dramatic difference in people’s lives.”Culberson says he grew up in a family that was “fiscally conservative, devoted to the Constitution, and believed the American republic is a special inheritance.” His father was a graphic designer who, he says, worked only for candidates who shared that philosophy.Founding father Thomas Jefferson is his “guiding light,” Culberson says. After spending “a lot of time studying” what Jefferson said about the purpose of government,” Culberson reached this conclusion: “Government is a necessary evil, and its sole purpose is to protect our liberty. It should give us the freedom and ability to do what God meant us to do, and stay away from my wallet, my gun case, my home, my kids, my church. Just leave me alone.”Still, he believes that keeping the government out of one’s life requires constant vigilance. While still in law school, he jumped into a race for an open seat in the Texas legislature. “I’ve never been a good spectator,” he explains.During his campaign, he turned his youth and relative inexperience into an asset by saying his candidacy demonstrated his eagerness to fulfill his civic obligation. Despite a small campaign chest and a crowded field, Culberson won the seat in 1986 and held it for 14 years before launching a successful bid in 2000 to succeed retiring Representative Bill Archer in Congress.“Elections are fundamentally about trust and whether people like you,” he says. “So I knocked on a lot of doors and built a network.”In 2003, then–Majority Leader Tom DeLay, another influential Texan Republican, offered him a seat on the powerful House appropriations committee. Culberson says he got the post after telling DeLay: “I’m going to say no to everything except science and national defense.”The story is clearly meant to burnish his credentials as a fiscal conservative. But it also reflects how, in the course of rising through the political ranks, Culberson has never lost his interest in, and enthusiasm for, science.A scientific hierarchyCulberson sees science as a way to explore what he calls “the great mysteries of the universe.” Those mysteries include the “96% of the universe we cannot see”—a combination of dark energy and dark matter—as well as “the fundamental building blocks of matter, like the Higgs boson that they just discovered at CERN.” He would also include new medical technologies that aim to improve human health and cure dreaded diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer’s.But Culberson’s enthusiasm doesn’t seem to extend to the social and behavioral sciences. Those areas, not coincidentally, are hot-button issues with many conservatives. Culberson says he stands squarely with Representative Lamar Smith (R–TX), a fellow Texan and chair of the House science committee, in his campaign to crack down on what they see as wasteful spending by NSF and NASA on low-priority research areas.Most scientists have accused Smith of waging a war against science. But Culberson says it’s actually a prudent course for NSF to follow.“I think NSF should focus more on the pure sciences, on the fundamentals, and be careful to avoid funding research projects that would damage its sterling reputation in the eyes of the public,” Culberson says. “I’d encourage them to avoid funding studies like shrimps on a treadmill—I hope we never see anything like that again—or alcoholism among prostitutes in Thailand.” (Culberson is referring to two federal grants that have become notorious in conservative circles.)“If the private sector is interested in funding obscure or obtuse social science question, then let them,” he adds. “But NSF needs to be keenly aware of how these grants would look on the front page of the local newspaper. They are just not a productive use of our tax dollars.”Research on global climate falls into the same category, he argues. “I think human activity has contributed in some way [to climate change]. But there have been dramatic changes in our climate over the planet’s history. We’ve been frozen solid, and we’ve been far, far hotter. I read all the time about scientific evidence of dramatically higher temperatures that are completely unrelated to human activity. There’s also a tremendous amount of data out there that is still in conflict, so I think it’s essential that we follow the facts and the science.”Culberson says those facts also dovetail with his views of the 10th Amendment—and expose what he sees as the real reasons behind the administration’s climate change policies. “The whole thrust of President Obama’s program, and the liberal obsession with climate change, is driven by their desire to raise more money for the government,” he says. “The carbon taxes in Europe, the administration’s efforts to impose costs on industry and the public to mitigate climate change, that’s all about collecting money.”There’s an old adage that politicians are entitled to their own opinions but not to their own facts. And following the facts is exactly what most scientists say they are doing when they submit grant proposals to NSF and other agencies on politically sensitive subjects. Those grants are then reviewed and scored by experts as part of the agency’s highly regarded merit review process, which culminates in a final thumbs-up or thumbs-down decision by NSF officials.Culberson’s stance leaves him open to the charge that he is substituting his judgment for that of scientific experts. That’s especially problematic for a lawmaker who emphasizes that his support for the Europa mission is driven not by his own fascination with its frozen oceans but by his desire to reinforce the consensus of the scientific community.The consensus Culberson is referring to is a 2011 decadal study for planetary science, written by a panel convened by the U.S. National Academies. He regards such decadal studies, which identify high-priority research areas and often help set agency spending priorities, as “the gold standard” for setting NASA’s direction. And he vows that the CJS bills his panel produces will continue to require NASA “to fund and fly” the survey’s priority missions. (At the top of the report’s list was a trip to collect, and eventually return, samples from Mars, part of a multistep approach to exploring the Red Planet that NASA is pursuing.)“I didn’t decide to put that $100 million into NASA’s budget this year for the Europa mission,” he tells ScienceInsider. “The decadal study decided it. And I put in the technology money so that NASA could develop the penetrator that we’ll need to get below the ice and down into its ocean.”Culberson is also a big supporter of NSF’s activities to improve science and math education. He sees the work as a key element in creating a tech-savvy workforce and a scientifically literate population.Some might see that view as being in conflict with the 10th Amendment, which is generally seen as giving states complete control over education. But not Culberson, who emphasized the difference during a conversation that began with his criticism of NASA for straying from what he sees as its main purpose.“OMB [The White House Office of Management and Budget] has been driving NASA for far too long … and diverting it into all these activities that are not part of NASA’s core missions, including education,” he began. “Instead, NSF should take the lead in helping to design a model science curriculum. That’s not NASA’s job. And it ought not to be done at the Department of Education, either.”“I’d prefer to see NSF help to design, or recommend—that’s the key word—an ideal science curriculum for our public schools and universities,” he continues. “And then states would be free to adopt it, of their own volition. But not mandate, never. In fact, I authored legislation that passed the House last year that would eliminate all federal education grants in 5 years, and eliminate all federal control over education and return it to the states.”Nye, who is best known by his self-moniker, “the science guy,” says he’s “fascinated” by the interaction of Culberson’s faith-based political beliefs and his interest in scientific discovery. As CEO of the Planetary Society, Nye says, he sticks to the latter. “When we are in his office, we focus on Europa,” he says.That strategy has worked well for the society: Culberson has championed its goal of boosting NASA’s spending on planetary sciences to $1.5 billion a year and takes credit for lifting up its budget to within $65 million of that amount. But NASA’s overall science budget tops $5 billion, including almost $1.8 billion for the earth sciences. And in an era of fiscal constraints, climate scientists and those in the social and behavioral sciences are hoping that Culberson will make room on his science bandwagon for their disciplines, too.Click here to see all of our Budget 2016 coverage.last_img read more

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MVP Pablo rues horrible defense in loss to Bali Pure

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first_imgRobredo: 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 “We had a meeting with coach Rico [De Guzman] after the game and we all admitted that we weren’t in the game mentally,” said Pablo, who just won the conference’s MVP award, in Filipino.“We weren’t focused during the game and we absolutely had no reception against Bali Pure.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsThe Lady Warriors registered just 20 excellent receptions, while the Water Defenders tacked 33.And Bali Pure capitalized on Pocari’s lack of ground defense to score 39 spikes and nine service aces. Pablo expressed her discontent with how they failed to replicate whatever they did in training wherein they were able, she said, to execute their defensive plays perfectly.“That’s really the problem, we don’t have any reception,” said Pablo who had nine points in the loss. ”When we practice we’re able to execute them well but we just can’t seem to do it during games.”Pocari Sweat trail Bali Pure 0-1 in the best-of-three championship series.ADVERTISEMENT Pocari Sweat main man Myla Pablo lamented her team’s lack of defensive intensity in the straight set loss to Bali Pure, 25-22, 25-19, 25-22, in the first game of the Premier Volleyball League Open Conference finals Saturday at Filoil Flying V Centre.ADVERTISEMENT Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. NGCP on security risk: Chinese just technical advisers Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Bali Pure strikes first for 1-0 lead over Pocari in PVL Finalscenter_img Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters DILG, PNP back suspension of classes during SEA Games NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ MOST READ Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo LATEST STORIES View commentslast_img read more

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Expanding US footprint is like walking in quicksand for F1

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first_imgDuterte officials’ paranoia is ‘singularly myopic’ LATEST STORIES Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:40Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:19Charges: Ex-Google engineer stole self-drive tech02:11Makabayan bloc defends protesting workers, tells Año to ‘shut up’03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:38‘Bato’ to be ‘most effective’ CHR head? It’s for public to decide – Gascon02:07Aquino to Filipinos: Stand up vs abuses before you suffer De Lima’s ordeal01:28Ex-President Noynoy Aquino admits contracting pneumonia00:45Aquino agrees with Drilon on SEA games ‘kaldero’ spending issue MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Fred Hoiberg sees untapped potential at long-suffering Nebraska Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, of Germany, steers his car during first practice session for the Formula One U.S. Grand Prix auto race at the Circuit of the Americas, Friday, Nov. 1, 2019, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric GayAUSTIN, Texas — Formula One officials have dreamed of expanding in the U.S. since the day the series returned to American soil in 2012.Every step must feel like quicksand.ADVERTISEMENT Priority legislation in the 18th Congress Someone from the Philippines could win a $208 million jackpot this week! Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. While American television ratings are rising and the U.S. Grand Prix in Texas has developed into a durable, popular race, dreams of landing F1 in other spots such as Las Vegas, Los Angeles and New York have never materialized. A planned 2021 Miami Grand Prix has run into fierce local resistance over worries about traffic disruptions, noise and air pollution without a corresponding economic impact.“We’d be absorbing all the negatives and we wouldn’t be reaping any of the benefits,” Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert III said. “I can’t imagine Formula One wants to have a race in a community where the residents don’t want them.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGreatest ever?SPORTSFormer PBA import Anthony Grundy passes away at 40SPORTSSan Miguel suspends Santos, Nabong, Tubid indefinitely after ‘tussle’ in practiceThe Miami Grand Prix was first proposed as a waterfront race with spectacular television views of cars zipping around Bayfront Park and the Port of Miami. But resistance from local neighborhoods scuttled that idea and the race evolved — or devolved — into a proposed course 25 miles north (and inland) in and near a parking lot at Hard Rock Stadium, home of the NFL’s Miami Dolphins.The proposed course would include a couple of public streets near the stadium, leaving Miami Gardens to absorb road closures and days of school disruption for crowds that won’t be staying and spending their money locally, Gilbert said. View comments Matteo Guidicelli had saved up for Sarah G’s ring since 2014? “We understand we are part of a larger economic ecosystem,” Gilbert said. ”(But) we’re a bedroom community. We don’t have the tourism infrastructure. (Race fans) will be staying in Miami Beach or Fort Lauderdale. They won’t be staying in Miami Gardens.”At a lengthy Miami-Dade County commission meeting last Monday, the panel approved resolutions that would require another public hearing before the race could be approved, and another that could prevent closing of public streets for the race. The latter move could force course changes and confine the race to the stadium parking lot.Formula One officials didn’t respond to requests for comment. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Chase Carey told a group of F1 investors earlier this week the series recognized the new hurdles but is “still engaged” in trying to land the Miami Grand Prix.A big part of F1′s struggles to stage a second U.S. race is finding a street course that is both acceptable to locals and logistically possible. That’s quite different from Texas.While the proposed Miami race would run close to the front yards and playgrounds of the surrounding neighborhood, the U.S. Grand Prix races on a track built specifically for F1. The privately held Circuit of the Americas is several miles from downtown Austin and was built into the rolling hills and scrubland of Central Texas.ADVERTISEMENT Drilon apologizes to BCDA’s Dizon over false claim on designer of P50-M ‘kaldero’ What’s behind the display of Chinese flag in Boracay? The surrounding community has slowly expanded toward the track, but the circuit remains mostly isolated near a landfill and businesses that include scrap yards and a recycling plant.“You can stand on the side of (Hard Rock Stadium) and throw a rock into the neighborhood,” said Miami-Dade County Commissioner Barbara Jordan. To have a facility like the Texas track in South Florida, “you’d have to do it out in the Everglades, and that’s not going to happen.”The U.S. Grand Prix faced some resistance when it was first proposed, mostly over objections to the $25 million in state money its collects annually and uses to pay F1′s fee to host the race. That money is available because the state Legislature made Formula One races eligible for the cash even before the U.S. Grand Prix race was revived in Texas.“It’s not easy to pull one of these off,” Circuit of the Americas President Bobby Epstein said. “Unless you spend years and hundreds of millions on a place like this, you’re putting the sport in a place that was meant for something else.“It’s hard to create a sustaining event in a parking lot,” Epstein said, adding he thinks F1 will find somewhere to stage a second race in the U.S.Miami or elsewhere, Formula One is determined to expand its season.Rules unveiled for 2021 and beyond allow up to 25 races in a calendar year. Carey has called Asia and the U.S. top targets for expansion. Miami would give F1 four events in North America, joining Texas, Montreal and Mexico City.“I think it’s quality over quantity,” Carey said Thursday. “When we add a race in a place, we want to make sure it really brings something special to the sport.” Rice industry paralysis Duterte calls himself, Go, Cayetano ‘the brightest stars’ in PH politicslast_img read more

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Exclusive: Muttiah Muralitharan slams Sanjay Manjrekar’s comments on Kieron Pollard

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first_imgKieron Pollard is a angry man these days, smarting from Sanjay Manjrekar’s criticism highlighting his batting limitations. The big hitting Mumbai Indians batting star would be happy to know he has found support from Sri Lankan legend and Sunrisers Hyderabad bowling coach Muttiah Muralitharan.Speaking to India Today, Muralitharan chose to play players’ advocate and slammed Manjrekar’s comments made on air. “I think it is about both parties; not just Pollard or even Sanjay Manjrekar. He should also not have commented in public that he is not suited to bat in the top order. It is criticism. It should not be done openly. He has got (nearly) 7000 runs in the T20 format of the game. So how can someone who has got all these runs not fit in the top order? These are harsh words and his opinion. And the player can respond in his way,” he said. (Also read: IPL 2017’s first controversy: Kieron Pollard in Twitter outburst against Sanjay Manjrekar)Manjrekar had observed on air during Mumbai Indians’ chase of KKR’s stiff target that the West Indian had certain limitations which did not qualify him to bat at No.3. Pollard came into bat at no.6 and struggled to a run-a-ball 17 in the game before Hardik Pandya took the team home with a quickfire knock.Pollard did not take Manjrekar’s comments kindly and took to twitter to have a go at the Former India batsman. “@sanjaymanjrekar u feel any positive can come out of your mouth bcuz u get pay to talk u can continue with your verbal diarrhea…”advertisementPollard took particular exception to Manjrekar’s remarks. He ranted on, “Do you know how I get big so..about BRAINLESS..words are very powerful…once it leaves u can’t take it back.. sins of parents fall on…”While the casual observer on social media has egged Pollard on following his offensive against Manjrekar, some in the Indian cricket community have been critical of Pollard’s language and defended Manjrekar’s right to comment objectively.Muralitharan prefers to marvel at Pollard’s T20 track record and backs his right to defend his case. “He can say I am good enough I have (nearly) 7000 runs and I have played 10-15 years of T20 cricket. I am one of the most important players in Mumbai Indians set up. Players also get hurt. The way you comment is also most important. When you play a bad shot criticism is fine but these were unfair comments. If Sanjay has given his word, player can counter attack him because he has done it and show his performance,” he opined.Manjrekar who has in the past not been shy of engaging in social media confrontations with public figures has so far chosen to stay silent on the matter.last_img read more

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AP Source: Machado, Padres Agrees to $300M, 10-Year Deal

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first_imgFILE – In this Oct. 16, 2018, file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado (8) reacts after scoring on a Cody Bellinger walk-off hit during the 13th inning of Game 4 of the National League Championship Series baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers, in Los Angeles. A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press that infielder Manny Machado has agreed to a $300 million, 10-year deal with the rebuilding San Diego Padres, the biggest contract ever for a free agent. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2019, because the agreement was subject to a successful physical and had not been announced. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)The Chicago White Sox offered $250 million for eight years, a person familiar with that proposal said. That person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the club did not publicly disclose its offer. The White Sox were trying to get in position for a second title under owner Jerry Reinsdorf, who turns 83 next week.“Still in a bit of disbelief,” executive vice president Kenny Williams said. “I feel we put our best foot forward. Jerry, in particular, really stepped up.”Machado also met with the Yankees, a team that had expressed concern over Machado’s remarks about hustling — not hustling, actually — during the playoffs.After failing to run out a grounder in the NL Championship Series, Machado said: “Obviously I’m not going to change, I’m not the type of player that’s going to be ‘Johnny Hustle’ and run down the line and slide to first base.”Machado tried to clarify his remarks after the season, saying, “looking back, it doesn’t come across how I meant it.”Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner took notice of Machado’s initial comments, labeling them “troubling” and added, “That ain’t going to sell where we play baseball.”No worries. Padres fans will take him.TweetPinShare0 Shares By: Bernie Wilson, AP Sports WriterSAN DIEGO (AP) — With their city’s long-suffering fans desperate for a winner, the rebuilding San Diego Padres delivered their splashiest free agent signing ever by agreeing with All-Star infielder Manny Machado on a $300 million, 10-year deal.A person familiar with the negotiations confirmed the deal to The Associated Press on Tuesday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the agreement was subject to a successful physical and had not been announced. Machado can opt out after five years and become a free agent again, the person said.Machado’s agreement would be the second-largest in baseball history behind Giancarlo Stanton’s $325 million, 13-year deal signed with the Miami Marlins ahead of the 2015 season. It would be the highest deal for a free agent, topping Alex Rodriguez’s $275 million, 10-year contract with the New York Yankees from 2008-17.More records may be broken soon. Free agent outfielder Bryce Harper could top Stanton’s deal in coming days or weeks.That won’t matter a bit to Padres fans, who have never celebrated a World Series title and were keeping their fingers crossed in recent days as it became apparent that their team, with a mostly sad-sack history stretching back a half-century, actually had a chance at landing Machado, who is only 26.Some fans seemed braced for yet another disappointment. But news of the deal was greeted with euphoria on social media.Speaking at spring training in Peoria, Arizona, Padres executive chairman Ron Fowler declined to confirm the deal, saying: “We do not have a deal with any free agent player. We are continuing discussions, and that’s all we have to say.”Teams draw a distinction between an agreement subject to a physical and a finalized deal.While Fowler looked serious, general partner Peter Seidler couldn’t help but smile while waiting for his turn to speak.Without confirming the deal, Seidler — a nephew of former Los Angeles Dodgers owner Peter O’Malley — spoke of what his ownership group wants to bring to San Diego, where the Padres play in a gem of a ballpark just off the bay.“Ron and I, we love the city of San Diego, we love sports in San Diego, but we’re also well aware of the history. There’s never been a championship from a major sports franchise in San Diego. … We as an organization want to completely change that. We want our franchise to win year after year after year. And we’re going to do whatever we can rationally do to help make that happen.”The Padres lost 96 games last year, haven’t had a winning season since 2010 and haven’t been to the playoffs since 2006. They haven’t won a playoff series since the 1998 NL Championship against Atlanta. They were routed in their two World Series appearances, by Detroit in 1984 and the New York Yankees in 1998.And they’ve had the city’s big league sports scene to themselves since the NFL’s Chargers moved to the Los Angeles area two seasons ago. The Chargers did win the AFL title in 1963 but were blown out by San Francisco in their only Super Bowl appearance, after the 1994 season.Other than the AFL title, the biggest championships won around here were probably Little League World Series titles in 2009 by Park View of Chula Vista and in 1961 by El Cajon-La Mesa Northern, which included Brian Sipe, who won the NFL’s MVP Award in 1980.FILE – In this Oct. 20, 2018, file photo, then-Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado (8) hits a single during the fourth inning of Game 7 of the National League Championship Series baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers, in Milwaukee. A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press that infielder Manny Machado has agreed to a $300 million, 10-year deal with the rebuilding San Diego Padres, the biggest contract ever for a free agent. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2019, because the agreement was subject to a successful physical and had not been announced.(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)Padres players were ecstatic, even though the signing was not yet official.Catcher Austin Hedges was headed toward bunting drills when he heard the news. He pumped his fists and said, “I’m just that excited about bunting.”“You see me smiling right here,” said first baseman Eric Hosmer, who exactly a year ago earlier finalized a $144 million, eight-year deal with San Diego. “We’ve all been practicing today, obviously. We’ve all kind heard what’s been going on, and all we can say is he’s a guy we’d love to have, and I think it changes things pretty quickly if we do have him here.“He’s one of the top guys in the league,” Hosmer added. “Obviously extremely young free agent that’s got a lot of amazing baseball left in him and he’s already had a lot of amazing baseball in his career. We’re all just glad he’ll hopefully be here with us in San Diego.”The Padres have been rebuilding mostly via their top-rated farm system since a failed win-now approach with high-priced veterans in 2015.Machado is expected to fill the team’s glaring need at third base. He began last year at shortstop with Baltimore, was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers after the All-Star break and split time and shortstop and third. He struck out to end the World Series loss to Boston.Commissioner Rob Manfred said the deal, if it goes through, is “a great thing. The Padres were active last year in the free-agent market, obviously a big signing with Eric Hosmer. This would be another one, if in fact that’s what happened. And I think it’s good for baseball to have big stars present in some of our smaller markets and see those markets really being out there willing to compete for the best talent.”With Machado on board, the next big move for the Padres, whether by opening day or later in the season, is expected to be the promotion of shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr., the 20-year-old son of a former big leaguer and the No. 2 overall prospect in baseball.A four-time All-Star, Machado hit .297 last year and set career bests with 37 homers and 107 RBIs. A four-time All-Star and two-time Gold Glove winner, he has a .282 career average with 175 homers and 513 RBIs in seven big league seasons.last_img read more

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Yoga events held across Punjab on International Yoga Day

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first_imgChandigarh, Jun 21 (PTI) A series of yoga events were held across Punjab today on the occasion of fourth International Yoga Day.A state level yoga event was organised at a sports complex in Mohali which saw participation from around 3,000 yoga enthusiasts including senior citizens, government officials, sportspersons and students, officials said.Plants were distributed to the participants at the event, they added.Similar events were held in other parts of the state including Jalandhar, Ferozepur, Amritsar under state government’s ‘Tandarust Punjab Mission’, officials said.Senior officials of the district administration were seen performing yoga asanas during the events. PTI CHS SUN VSD RHL RHLRHLlast_img

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Harbhajan Singh furious after Lord’s defeat: Make coach Shastri accountable

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first_imgSpinner Harbhajan Singh wants coach Ravi Shastri to be made answerable for the Indian team’s deplorable performance in the ongoing Test series against England.Virat Kohli’s team lost the first Test match at Birmingham inside four days and then succumbed to the hosts by an innings and 159 runs at the Lord’s on Sunday.”For us there is no away, every game is a home game because we don’t play the opponent, we play the pitch. Our job is to conquer the pitch wherever we go,” Shastri had roared before leaving for the long tour.A veteran of 103 Tests, Harbhajan said that like everyone else, even the head coach should be held accountable if the team loses the five-match series.”The coach has to come on record, today or tomorrow he has to speak up. He is answerable to everyone. If India loses the series, then he might have to eat his words and admit that conditions do make a lot of difference,” Harbhajan, who has 417 Test wickets to his credit, told Aaj Tak in an interview.Humiliation at Lord’s: Gut-wrenching defeat should come as no surpriseThe off-spinner, currently doing the commentary duties in England, is furious at the way Indian team has surrendered in the two Tests played so far.”We haven’t showed any intent to fight back. The willingness to win is missing and that is most disheartening. We are losing without posing any challenge to the opponent. It is extremely disappointing,” said Harbhajan.Also read: The curious case of Pujara and Dhawan: Constant Test struggles overseasadvertisementContinuous chopping and changing of the playing eleven is one of the key reasons for team’s poor showing feels India’s third-highest wicket-taker in Test cricket.”On foreign tours, a good opening partnership makes such a huge difference but in every match our opening pair is getting changed. In every game, the playing eleven is getting changed. Even the middle order isn’t set. At the Lord’s, we had a green wicket and overcast conditions but the team management decided to play two spinners. Was it really needed?”The hosts could have been all out for 160-170 if a third seamer in Umesh had played instead of an extra spinner.”Coach Ravi Shastri must answer some questions after Lord’s horrorHarbhajan also said that it is high time the all-rounder tag is taken away from Hardik Pandya.”He (Pandya) hasn’t got many runs as a batsman and the captain doesn’t seem to have confidence in his bowling. If he doesn’t bowl in these conditions then things will only get difficult for him and the Indian team in the future. We have to remove the all-rounder tag from him as an all-rounder contributes in both the departments as (Ben) Stokes, (Sam) Curran did in the first Test and now (Chris) Woakes has done at the Lord’s. The same is expected of Hardik Pandya, he cannot become Kapil Dev overnight!”last_img read more

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Calcutta HC denies permission for Amit Shah’s rath yatra; Political war over Congress-Michel link; more

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Pro Kabaddi League 2019: Gujarat Fortunegiants, Patna Pirates register dominant wins

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first_imgParvesh Bhainswal produced a terrific defensive performance as Gujarat Fortunegiants defeated UP Yoddha 44-19 in a VIVO Pro Kabaddi League Season 7 match here on Friday.With two wins from as many games, Gujarat Fortunegiants now are atop the table. Bhainswal scored six tackle points, while young Sumit, who made his debut on Friday, also impressed for the Gujarat Fortunegiants.Rohit Gulia completed a Super 10 and led the raiding charge for Gujarat Fortunegiants. UP Yoddha’s inexperienced backline had a forgettable night as they scored just five tackle points.Monu Goyat also struggled to pick points and earned just two tackle points and spent a lot of time off court. Sachin Tanwar picked up a couple of raid points to give Gujarat Fortunegiants a 3-1 lead after three minutes.UP Yoddha clawed back to level the match at 4-4 after five minutes but after that it was all Gujarat Fortunegiants. Sachin, who reached the 300-point landmark in PKL, made a two-point raid to further Gujarat’s advantage.In the 11th minute Gujarat Fortunegiants inflicted the first all out of the match with a lead of 12-5. Gujarat’s defence did a fine job on Yoddha’s star man Goyat and kept him on the bench for almost 13 minutes in the first half.Goyat’s absence was felt badly by UP Yoddha as they struggled to pick up raid points. At the end of the first half, the score was 19-9 in favour of Gujarat Fortunegiants.Gujarat Fortunegiants began the second half in a fine fashion as they inflicted another all out in the 21st minute to lead 24-9.advertisementBhainswal immediately put the pressure back on Yoddha as he sent Goyat back to the bench.Bhainswal was in superb form and showed immense strength and made three successive tackles to give Gujarat Fortunegiants a 31-13 lead after 30 minutes.Sonu Janglan who came on as a substitute made a super raid in the last minute to complete Gujarat’s dominance. Also See:last_img read more

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Arsenal secure comeback victory over Manchester City in WSL

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first_imgArsenal recovered from going a goal down to beat Manchester City 2-1 thanks to strikes from Beth Mead and Danielle van de Donk in Alex Scott’s final home game for the club.The hosts were almost ahead in the eighth minute when Jordan Nobbs controlled the ball 20 yards out and struck a powerful half-volley but Karen Bardsley in the City goal reacted to palm it over. Share on LinkedIn Striker Charlie Wellings scored two of City’s goals, the first a superb dipping shot from 30 yards out in the 20th minute and the second arriving after half-time when she stabbed home a low effort from just outside the area. Wellings had other chances throughout a one-sided match but it was England star Ellen White who completed the rout with another magnificent long-range goal. The result sees Birmingham leapfrog Everton’s rivals Liverpool in fifth place.Winless Yeovil Town were once again defeated despite holding out for 62 minutes before Lauren Hemp and Yana Daniels scored to give Bristol City a 2-0 victory. Topics Facebook Share on Pinterest Reuse this content Charlie Wellings, centre, celebrates scoring Birmingham City’s second goal. Photograph: Currie for FA/Rex/Shutterstock Share on Messenger Arsenal How football is saving the lives of Turkish girls in Malatya news Share on WhatsApp Women’s Super League Pinterest Twitter Manchester City Share via Email Women’s football Share on Twitter Bardsley’s acrobatics were rewarded three minutes later as Georgia Stanway drove through the middle of the pitch before sliding a pass to Nadia Nadim who made the most of a slip from goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal, as the Denmark international’s shot from 10 yards trickled beyond the stranded Arsenal No1 and into the corner.Nadim should have added another as she found space in the box in order to connect with a Nikita Parris cross but headed over the bar. Nobbs then brought the best out of Bardsley once more when she fired a shot from the right-hand edge of the area across the goalkeeper but she was once again spurned by strong arm which diverted the ball wide.After the break Arsenal quickly took control of the match as Nobbs laid the ball into the path of Van de Donk who maintained calm before precisely directing her shot into the bottom corner from 18 yards. The Dutch international then ran to embrace her soon-to-be retiring team-mate Scott on the bench.In the 62nd minute the comeback was completed as Kim Little dissected the defence with a pass which looked like it had missed its original target but Mead broke between opposition players to then hit a shot beyond Bardsley from an acute angle. Mead was another who shared her moment of joy with Scott on the touchline, a sign of how much the defender means to the squad after originally joining the club in 1992.City should have shared the points but substitute Izzy Christiansen failed to convert a cross from the right-wing despite being five yards out and unmarked, instead sending her header wide of the goal.Scott was sent on for the final moments of the game, much to the home support’s delight, and they celebrate once again when the whistle went as they held on.Everton were dispatched 3-0 by Birmingham City Ladies at Marine Travel Arena in a disappointing final home game in Division One of the Women’s Super League Season. Share on Facebook Read morelast_img read more

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Province to Make 40 Per Cent Renewable Target Law

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first_imgAccess to cleaner, more secure energy at stable prices for Nova Scotians is the goal of the Clean Energy Act introduced in the legislature today, April 8, by Energy Minister Charlie Parker. The amendment would confirm hydro-electricity from the Lower Churchill project in Labrador as an eligible resource for meeting Nova Scotia’s ambitious renewable electricity targets. The amendment will allow regulations to be developed to make the goal of 40 per cent renewable electricity by 2020 a firm legal requirement. “Nova Scotians can be proud to be part of one of the most aggressive renewable electricity transformations in the world,” said Mr. Parker. “We have said all along that we aspire to the goal of 40 per cent renewable electricity by 2020 and the Lower Churchill project gives us the certainty we need to make it law.” The government released its Renewable Electricity Plan in April 2010, which outlined a regulated target of 25 per cent renewable electricity by 2015, and set a goal of 40 per cent by 2020. “The Lower Churchill project is a boost to our renewable electricity plans in two ways,” said Mr. Parker. “It is a direct source of clean energy and also allows us to develop more of our own renewable resources such as wind and tidal energy.” Hydro-electricity is a perfect back-up for intermittent sources such as wind and tidal energy, as it can be turned on and off as required. In November 2010, Nalcor Energy of Newfoundland and Labrador, and Emera Inc. of Nova Scotia, announced their agreement to develop the Muskrat Falls portion of the Lower Churchill hydro resource in Labrador. In return for a 20 per cent investment in the project, Nova Scotia will receive 170 megawatts annually of firm and flexible hydro-electricity for 35 years, with an option for an additional 330 megawatts. The electricity will travel through Labrador and Newfoundland and into Nova Scotia through a 180-kilometre sub-sea cable to be called the Maritime Link. When the Lower Churchill project begins to produce and distribute power in 2017, it will fulfill eight to 10 per cent of Nova Scotia’s total power needs, comprising about one quarter of the 40 per cent target. Lower Churchill and other regional renewable energy projects will provide economic benefits to the Atlantic region, and is consistent with the new regional approach to energy through initiatives such as the Atlantic Energy Gateway. The province’s Renewable Electricity Plan, as well as the legislative amendments, are available at www.gov.ns.ca/energy .last_img read more

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Sarah Duchess Of York Helps Open Teenage Cancer Trust Unit

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first_imgSarah, Duchess of York and world snooker players Judd Trump and Jack Lisowski, have officially opened at Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre (BHOC) the first specialist Teenage Cancer Trust unit in the UK’s South West for local young people with cancer.Sarah Ferguson helps open first specialist Teenage Cancer Trust unit in the South WestCredit/Copyright: Teenage Cancer TrustEach year, over 200 young people from Bristol, Somerset, Wiltshire, Gloucestershire, Devon and Cornwall, are diagnosed with cancer. Across the UK, seven are diagnosed every day. Traditionally treated either on a children’s ward or on an adult ward often alongside elderly patients, young people can feel extremely isolated during treatment, some never meeting another young person with cancer. Being treated alongside others their own age, by experts in teenage and young adult cancer care, can make a huge difference to their experience.Thanks to fundraising support from local communities, a volunteer committee chaired by Lady Wills, Trust funding from The Garfield Weston Foundation and the John James Bristol Foundation and generous help from corporate partners Home Retail Group, The Football Association, MandM Direct and Societe Generale, Teenage Cancer Trust raised £2.5million to open this new eight bed unit. Named Area 61 by the patients and taking ten months to build, the state-of-the-art unit offers 16 to 24 year olds a place to receive treatment where they can feel at home.Long term patron of Teenage Cancer Trust, Sarah, Duchess of York, opened the unit and said: “Teenage Cancer Trust is the most incredible charity, helping young people stay teenagers first, cancer patients second. I’ve been a patron for over 20 years and I’ve seen it grow and lead the way in the treatment of teenage and young adult cancer. This new unit will help so many local young people and their families and friends.”The unit also gives young people the best possible care, support and access to treatment via a team of specialist doctors, nurses and youth support staff who are all experts in teenage and young adult cancer care. Teenage Cancer Trust funds the lead nurse and youth support coordinator roles within this team. The youth support coordinator helps young people share their experiences and fears with each other, encourages them to socialise by arranging activities and outings and enables them to participate in a peer support group.Area 61 has two floors, with one floor dedicated to in-patients with five en-suite bedrooms with sofa beds for family and friends to stay overnight. It also has a large social area where young people can play pool, listen to music, play games consoles or watch films on the latest Smart TVs. There’s also a kitchen and dining space where meals can be cooked at all times of day and night, as well as a lounge for family members to take a break. The other floor is for day patients, featuring three treatment pods, two consulting rooms, a procedure room, a social space which includes entertainment and gaming consoles and a waiting area with cafe.A group of young people with cancer were involved in the overall design of the unit and worked with local street artist Dave Bain to develop the wall art. James Lusher, the architect also consulted young people on the furniture designs and colours.Teenage Cancer Trust ambassadors Jack Lisowski from Cheltenham and Judd Trump, from Bristol, also helped officially open the unit and have been supporting the local fundraising appeal. It’s a cause close to their hearts as at 16 Jack was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Jack said: “It’s a fantastic moment to be here today and the unit is so much better than we could have ever imagined. Teenage Cancer Trust is an amazing organisation and I only wish I had benefitted from being treated here.”Siobhan Dunn, Chief Executive of Teenage Cancer Trust said: “This is an incredibly exciting moment in Teenage Cancer Trust’s history as it’s our first specialist unit in the South West. It’s a remarkable facility and we are very much hoping that local communities and businesses will continue supporting our work here as we need to raise a £1,000 a day to maintain the unit, fund specialist staff and continue our free cancer awareness sessions in schools across the region.”Jamie Cargill, Teenage Cancer Trust Lead Nurse at University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UH Bristol) comments about today’s milestone: “It is taken a significant team effort to get to this point and credit must be given to all those who have been involved. Even after just a few months we can already see how the new facilities are benefiting our patients and their families. By helping us build this amazing unit, our local and regional supporters have done something very special for young people with cancer and I hope they feel as proud of the unit as we all do.”Dr Alison Cameron, Macmillan Teenage and Young Adults Lead Clinician at UH Bristol, said: “Over the past five years UH Bristol has built a team to care for and support teenage and young adult patients with cancer across the South West. The opening of this unit enables that team to maximise the support they give to patients and their families, whilst providing patients with as “normal”, least hospitalised, physical space as possible. This helps to reduce the impact of the cancer on the patient.”The unit opening marks the final phase in a multi-million pound investment the charity has made in young people’s cancer services across the South West. In December 2012, Teenage Cancer Trust lent its design expertise to enhance a brand new hospital ward at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children for 11 to 16 year olds with a variety of complex health issues including cancer. The charity has also adopted five teenage and young adult specialist nurses who operate from various shared care hospitals across the South West. By doing so, this provides an excellent model of care for 15-24 year olds no matter where they live in the region.Teenage Cancer Trust is now appealing to local communities to continue supporting its work with young people with cancer. The charity relies on donations and a £1,000 a day needs to be raised to maintain the new unit, fund specialist staff and support the free cancer awareness sessions that are delivered in schools, colleges and universities across the South West.Find out more here.Source:Teenage Cancer Trustlast_img read more

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‘Glad to be back’: Federer wins on long-awaited clay return

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first_imgMadrid: Roger Federer shook off a brief bout of pre-match jitters as he returned to clay after a three-year absence, posting a 6-2, 6-3 win over Richard Gasquet on Tuesday at the Madrid Open. The 20-time Grand Slam champion needed just 52 minutes to brush Gasquet aside in the second round, but confessed he had to control his emotions during afternoon match strategy sessions with his team. “I was very calm all day, but two hours before, I was feeling it a bit. But that was the only time,” Federer said. Also Read – We will push hard for Kabaddi”s inclusion in 2024 Olympics: Rijiju”The nerves went away quickly, I’m just happy I started well. “I’m glad to be back,” said the three-time Madrid champion who last played on clay almost three years ago, losing to Dominic Thiem in the Rome third round on May 12, 2016. Federer skipped the dirt for two full seasons to concentrate on his grass court form, winning Wimbledon in 2017. He claimed the Madrid title in 2006, 2009, and 2012. “I’ve been missing the clay, this is a great return, it’s a special night for me,” he said. Also Read – Djokovic to debut against Shapovalov at Shanghai MastersFederer swept up the opening set in 23 minutes and broke Frenchman Gasquet — who had defeated him twice on clay — for 5-3 in the second before serving it out a game later. Federer has won 18 of 21 meetings with Gasquet, just back from six months out with injury. “I’ve trained well, but that’s not like a match. The points here are quicker and first matches anywhere can be tricky,” said Federer. “But I felt really natural on the clay tonight.” Novak Djokovic needed just 65 minutes to make a winning start, while Naomi Osaka channelled her inner “zombie mode” to earn a place in the third round. Top seed and world number one Djokovic hammered American Taylor Fritz 6-4, 6-2 to advance to the last 16 following a premature exit here a year ago. “I thought my serve was very efficient today, that’s a big advantage,” Djokovic said.last_img read more

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Nabila Benkirane Rejoices at Her Husband’s Dismissal

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Rabat – Nabila Benkirane, the wife of ousted Head of Government, Abdelilah Benkirane, has congratulated her husband on King Mohammed VI’s decision to relieve him of his duties as appointed Head of Government.Mohamed Yatim, a leader in the Justice in the Development Party (PJD), took to his Facebook page Thursday, to share what happened behind the scenes after the release of the Royal cabinet’s communiqué announcing that King Mohammed VI will be appointing another PJD member as Benkirane’s replacement.In his Facebook post, entitled “Congratulations Benkirane,” Yatim said that Benkirane called him immediately following news that the King had decided to replace him with one of his partisan colleagues. “[Benkirane] called me at 10 p.m. – I had the feeling that significant developments had occurred. I was aware of recent information, including that Benkirane had requested a meeting with King Mohammed VI to discuss the government situation on Tuesday,” Yatim said.Yatim described the atmosphere in the Benkirane household Wednesday evening in anticipation of the King’s return from Africa and how he would move to break the deadlock that has plagued parliament for five months. He added that, as he entered the salon of Benkirane’s residence, he found several members of the PJD had preceded him to join the PJD leader at his house.“Once I entered the salon, I immediately congratulated Benkirane on being relieved of this responsibility and he rejoiced at being congratulated in this way,” Yatim added. “He told me how his wife Nabila had rejoiced after she received this news and she thanked God for his ‘dismissal,’ now able to hold his head up.” read more

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What Next? UK lawmakers to vote on myriad Brexit options

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LONDON — With the date and terms of Britain’s departure from the European Union mired in uncertainty, Parliament has seized control of the political process so lawmakers can try to hammer out a way forward. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Theresa May still hopes to win approval for her twice-rejected divorce deal with the bloc before an EU-imposed Friday deadline.Here’s a look at what might happen next:___PARLIAMENT TAKES CHARGEWith Brexit deadlocked amid feuding between Britain’s political factions, lawmakers voted to upend the usual parliamentary procedure, in which the government decides the schedule for debates and votes. The House of Commons carved out time for legislators to hold a series of “indicative votes” Wednesday on alternatives to May’s defeated deal.Lawmakers from across the political spectrum have submitted 16 different options for consideration, though Speaker John Bercow is expected to whittle the number down to about half a dozen before debate begins. The proposals include leaving the EU without a deal, remaining in the bloc’s single market and customs union, and holding a new referendum on Britain’s EU membership.The results are likely to be inconclusive, but could help indicate what, if anything, can command majority support in Parliament. Lawmakers behind the move plan to hold another day of votes next week to narrow down the proposals to one idea — then to send the government back to negotiate it with the EU.The government says Parliament’s move sets “a dangerous, unpredictable precedent,” but has promised to “engage constructively” with the result of the votes. But ministers say any plan agreed by Parliament must be “realistic” and negotiable with the EU.___MAY’S DEAL NOT DEAD YETMay hasn’t given up hope that the deal she agreed with the bloc setting out the terms of Britain’s withdrawal will be passed by Parliament, even though it has been rejected twice by hefty margins.Under an extension granted by the EU last week, if U.K. lawmakers approve the divorce deal by Friday — Britain’s original departure date — Britain will leave the EU on May 22. If they don’t, Britain has until April 12 to tell the EU what it plans to do next: leave without a deal, risking economic chaos, or seek a long delay to Brexit and chart a course toward a softer exit or even remaining in the bloc.May is still holding talks with lawmakers and could try to hold a third vote on the deal on Thursday or Friday.She hopes to persuade pro-Brexit legislators who have previously opposed the deal that if they don’t support it, Parliament will either impose a softer Brexit or delay Britain’s departure from the bloc indefinitely.There is some sign the argument is working. Leading pro-Brexit Conservative lawmaker Jacob Rees-Mogg said Wednesday that while he thought May’s deal was a bad one, “legally leaving is better than not leaving at all.”___THE END OF MAY?British politicians are divided over Brexit, but they agree that the process is a mess — and many blame May, who has refused to consider alternatives to her deal and failed to win changes to the agreement from the EU.Her authority has been shredded by a series of parliamentary defeats, and many Conservatives are now calling for May to step down. Some pro-Brexit Tories say they would support May’s deal if she promised to hand over the next stage of negotiations — when Britain and the EU will hammer out their future relations — to a new leader.For now, May is standing firm. Under Conservative rules, she can’t face a formal leadership challenge from within her own party until December because she survived one three months ago. But she is due to meet Conservative lawmakers later, and could try to win support for her deal by promising to step down at some point this year.___BYE-BYE BREXIT?Opposition politicians think the only way forward is an early election that could rearrange Parliament and break the political deadlock. May has ruled that out, but could come to see it as her only option.And anti-Brexit campaigners haven’t abandoned the idea of a new Brexit referendum on remaining in the EU. There’s currently no majority for that in Parliament, but pro-referendum campaigners feel opinion is shifting in their favour. Hundreds of thousands of people marched through London on Saturday to demand a new Brexit vote.The “nuclear option” of simply cancelling Brexit is also gaining support. An online petition urging the government to revoke the decision to leave the EU has amassed almost 6 million signatures.___Follow AP’s full coverage of Brexit at: https://www.apnews.com/BrexitJill Lawless, The Associated Press read more

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Conrad Black selling 218million ninebedroom family mansion in Toronto

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TORONTO — Former press baron Conrad Black is looking to sell his 23,000-square-foot home in Toronto’s exclusive Bridle Path neighbourhood.Nestled on a 6.6-acre lot, the nine-bedroom property that includes a caretaker suite and a converted coach house will hit the auction block on March 8.It has an estimated value of $21.8 million, according to an online listing.Black’s house was built and renovated by New York architect Thierry Despont, who has also designed and built homes for Calvin Klein, Bill Gates and the late Greek shipping tycoon Stavros Niarchos.How Conrad Black foresaw China’s crisis even during the country’s years of double-digit growthSupreme Court of Canada will not hear Conrad Black’s tax appealThe building features two, two-storey libraries, an indoor swimming pool with skylight, a carved granite Jacuzzi and a copper-domed chapel consecrated by two cardinals.Toronto real estate agent Barry Cohen is handling the sale in partnership with New York-based Concierge Auctions. read more

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Kate Humble I had a panic attack at the thought of having

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first_imgMs Humble has spoken in the past about her decision not to become a mother, and said that there is still a “stigma” attached to women who make the same decision. “By choice I have said I do not want to have children,” she explained.“And that still seems to be quite odd and you do still seem to be quite judged for it.” She added that she was pleased to be able to support other women who feel stigmatised for not wanting children. “It felt constructive, it felt like women could turn around and say: ‘at last there’s somebody there in the public eye who feels the same way we do’. “Suddenly it’s becoming a topic of conversation.”  But she firmly rejected suggestions that her life’s devotion to animals is in any way a substitute for motherhood. “Absolutely not. I don’t want a substitute. I never wanted kids. “This is a completely different thing. I find animals just endlessly fascinating, in the way that people find children endlessly fascinating. “For me, there is never a dull moment when you have an animal around.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Wildlife presenter Kate Humble said she had a “panic attack” when discussing having children. The 48-year-old BBC presenter said that there was still a stigma around childless women.She has previously said that both she and her husband of 25 years Ludo Graham, 55 are not interested in having children, but the pair had discussed what they would do if one of them had a change of heart. She said she had “what I can only describe as a panic attack”. “I broke down in tears and said: ‘I cannot do it’. It was kind of a primeval response,” she added. “I don’t know where it came from. It was so strong, and that was the moment that I thought: ‘I’m never going to change my mind’.”  Kate has presented a number of popular wildlife programmes, including Springwatch, Autumnwatch, Animal Park and Lambing Live. last_img read more

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Vicar apologises after criticising his grumbling congregation

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first_img“We (him and his wife Sarah-Jane) are actively looking for a ministry elsewhere. It has been a challenging time. I am on a sabbatical break for three months.” A vicar has been  forced to apologise after sending out a letter accusing some of his “grumbling” church members of  “actively sabotaging his ministry”. Rev Andy Thewlis has taken a “sabbatical break for three months” after the letter to his  congregation at All Saints Church in Burbage, Wiltshire said that Sunday morning services were marred by “gossip and disunity”.He apologised after an urgent meeting with the Bishop of Salisbury The Rt Rev Nick Holtam.In the original letter Rev Thewlis also complained that despite repeated requests he had not been provided with a comprehensive list of songs known to the congregation which “demonstrates an unwillingness to co-operate”. And he claimed there is also a culture of “non compliance in terms of organisation with respect to the law of the land and correctly implementing the policies and practices of the Church of England”. “The Sunday morning worship experience is neither warm, nor welcoming. It does not portray real love joy or peace. Rather it reflects an organisation that is characterised by grumbling, gossip, and disunity,” he wrote.“Criticism and negativism are predominant behaviour traits in too many church members. Some people through their actions are actively sabotaging the ministry of their vicar and their church….. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.center_img “The arrogance of some church members through e mails and conversations on an almost daily basis is wearisome. It drains energy robs enthusiasm and reveals that some as we were told would prefer not to have a vicar.”Towards the end of the letter he says “we are not prepared to sacrifice our health or our marriage for a local church in which internal politics and unnecessary power games cause such hurt and division”.  The Salisbury Diocese said:”Upon being made aware of the letter sent to church members in Burbage the Bishop of Salisbury met with the Rev Thewlis at the earliest opportunity “Mr Thewlis has now written a letter of apology to those who received his letter which was inappropriate in both tenor and content. “The Bishop has also offered Mr Thewlis pastoral support including sabbatical time to consider his future and he has accepted this.”In the second letter Rev Thewlis told his congregation:”I recognise that the (first) letter was inappropriate and came as a shock. I should not have sent it to all church members nor should I have named individuals within it. I apologise unreservedly for the upset and hurt it has caused.”Mr Thewlis – who has been the Vicar for a year – added: ”I had a conversation (with the bishop).last_img read more

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3rd International handball goalkeepers camp in Makarska

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International handball goalkeeper camp ← Previous Story Enid Tahirovic: “I refused PSG” Next Story → Scandal in Poland: Wisla lost 0:10 against Piotrkowianin! Third year in a row, handball goalkeeper’s elite will gather on beautiful Adriatic coast in city of Makarska, where International Handball Goalkeeper Camp taking place from 22nd until 27th of June. High standard was set in the first two editions of the Camp. Over 100 young goalkeepers worked with famous handball names as Thierry Omeyer, Dejan Peric, Mirko Alilovic, Marin Sego, Dragan Jerkovic, Nikola Blazicko, Mirko Basic, Danijel Saric, Nebojsa Grahovac, Goran Stojanovic, Vlatko Djonovic. TOP quality conditions – good hotel and sports hall mixed with a trainings with some of this names are the best invitation for all young goalkeepers to join this project.COME AND ENJOY YOUR HANDBALL SUMMER read more

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