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first_img Why there needs to be a Pacific Islands Super Rugby teamSetting up a Pacific Islands Super Rugby team has long been mooted but the idea now seems to be getting closer to reality.Super Rugby has introduced teams from Argentina and Japan in recent years, and another revamp is expected in 2020. That is when a Pacific Islands team could be introduced.The New Zealand government recently released the findings of a feasibility study they had commissioned into basing a Super Rugby side on the Pacific Islands. While insisting such a team should be based in Fiji, Samoa or Tonga – Fiji’s capital Suva looks the most likely location – the report also said that playing a game either on the West Coast of America or on Hawaii would allow them to tap into new markets of large Pacific populations overseas.MORE FROM RUGBY WORLD ON THE PACIFIC ISLANDS Rugby World’s Pacific Islands special issue Rugby World finds out what those in the… Tonga coach Toutai Kefu“There are a lot of positives. One of the biggest ones for me is it keeps a lot of my players here. The biggest issue we have is most of our players are throughout Europe playing in different competitions, so the logistics of gathering together for a campaign are quite a challenge.French sojourns: There are huge number of islanders playing in the Top 14 (Getty Images)“If I had most players here playing Super Rugby I could keep in contact quite easily and track them a lot better. The Super Rugby programmes are much better than France, too, in terms of player welfare and tactical.”Fiji coach John McKee“A Super Rugby team is one of the missing pieces in the jigsaw of Pacific Islands rugby. It would help the Pacific to have more talented players at home. Players would still go to Europe, but they could certainly set their career off through pathways here and other Pacific nations.“It would be a massive benefit for us and the Super Rugby season fits perfectly with the international season.“With a Super Rugby franchise operating out of the Pacific, we could have an academy system underneath feeding into the professional team. It would all give Pacific coaches valuable experience in professional environment and that would strengthen the domestic rugby.Team base: ANZ Stadium in Suva has already hosted Super Rugby games (Getty Images)“For me there seems to be a bit of a shift with support from some quarters for this to happen. It needs to be financially stable and not take money out of the Pacific Island unions because we have to run our own domestic games and national team competitions. So we need support from other funding sources. There are a lot of challenges but it’s very exciting.”Samoa General Manager of High Performance Zane Hilton“In reality the players are not going to be from the existing national programme. It does however give the island nations a huge opportunity to have a pathway for players coming out of Samoa A and potential Manu Samoa players to play professional rugby.“We’ll back it and certainly support it, it just has to be done in a fair and equitable way.” Expand A celebration of Pacific Islands rugby – and… Pacific Combine creates new player pathway on islands Why there needs to be a Pacific Islands Super Rugby team New line-up? The addition of a Pacific Islands team could boost Super Rugby (Getty Images) LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Rugby World finds out what those in the Pacific Islands think of having a Super Rugby teamcenter_img TAGS: FijiSamoaTonga Expand Rugby World’s Pacific Islands special issue Pacific Combine creates new player pathway on islands Collapse There are other obvious benefits. It creates a route to professional rugby for players based in Fiji, Samoa and Tonga without having to head overseas and would give the unions easier access to their best players while also making them more likely to represent their home nation than qualify on residency elsewhere.There are still issues to be addressed, not least how the team would be funded, but World Rugby could decide to back such a project as they did with Argentina’s inclusion in the Rugby Championship and Super Rugby through the Jaguares.Making strides: The Fijian Drua already play in Australia’s NRC (Getty Images)When Rugby World was in Fiji and Samoa recently, we asked some of the key figures in the game there what they thought of a possible Super Rugby franchise and we received an overwhelmingly positive response.Here’s what they said…Samoa Rugby Union CEO Vincent Fepuleai“It’s a great idea and it’s a great opportunity for Samoa, Tonga and Fiji to play in that competition. From our point of view, we just want somebody to be able to fund it. We support it, but it all comes down to money.“An independent franchise with a mandate of having Pacific Islands players in the team looks most likely. Fiji is probably the right place for it to be logistically.“SANZAAR will decide whether to expand and a lot of work is going on behind scenes to find the right investors to be able to get it off the ground. Running it separately from the unions is a must.” Why there needs to be a Pacific Islands Super Rugby team Rugby World gets the lowdown on the Pacific… Don’t miss Rugby World’s Pacific Islands special – the September 2018 issue is on sale until the end of August. Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.last_img read more

first_imgFebruary 23, 2018  By Michael Leppertwww.contrariana.comFrom behind a podium in Florida last week, Emma Gonzalez said plenty. Much of what she has said the last several days has been said before, sort of.Michael Leppert is a public and governmental affairs consultant in Indianapolis and writes his thoughts about politics, government and anything else that strikes him at Contrariana.com.A sample of her tone was directed toward our nation’s political class.  She said to a mourning crowd, mocking the old guard “that us kids don’t know what we’re talking about, that were too young to understand how the government works—we call B.S.!”I mourn the kids from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who died February 14. I love the ones who survived.I tend to agree with the survivors’ underlying message, which helps me be a fan, but that is secondary for purposes of this column. They are rattling cages. And it is refreshing to watch.There has been an abundance of protesting lately in America. The “resist” movement is getting people off of the coach who had grown far too comfortable there. Of course, I’m talking about old people when I say that. I can say “old” because I certainly qualify. And please don’t misunderstand me on this, I support activism in general and not just the brand with which I agree.This is a special moment I hope our nation does not overlook. Obviously, the catalyst for this movement was a catastrophe that hopefully does not recur. But part of the uniqueness of the moment is that the young people speaking out today are the actual victims of the catastrophe. I hope that part is never the case again.The other part is a belief that speaking up actually matters. That is the thing that the old people in this country need to help make sure remains true. Young people need to know that what they are saying is important. Not because it represents some cliché participation trophy, but because their perspective can help us old folks hear B.S. with fresh ears.That’s what these kids are giving us more than anything: fresh ears.David Hogg is one of Gonzalez’ classmates. He was a prominent target of conspiracy theorists who wanted the public to believe that these young people were actors. While we are discussing B.S., this is on top of the list. Hogg’s dad happens to be an FBI agent as if that matters.“I haven’t lost hope in America, and my dad hasn’t either,” is a sample of what this young man said. He is 17 years old. He has already taken more from the mysterious and cowardly opposition on gun issues than anyone should have to take. And he appears unphased by it. Stay strong, kid.  We need you to stay strong.Perspective is the thing that is changing the conversation on gun violence this time.I have had some conversations with my guns rights friends these last few days. I am not friends with the NRA’s Dana Loesch and Wayne LaPierre. The people I have talked to are beginning to sound more reasonable than ever. My pals are making suggestions to me like, “be specific about the policy you want” and we might be able to agree. “Quit attacking the person who believes in gun ownership…” and maybe we can make a change together.I ask things like “how about investing in a background check system that is as important to you as social security numbers, citizenship records, or voter rolls?” Or “how about having the Centers for Disease Control do research on how to identify mass shooters before they kill?”These questions got me treated like David Hogg last year, but now 2nd Amendment lovers are actually thinking before they answer them.The conversation is changing. These young people are responsible for it.I hope all of this results in progress on America’s gun violence problem as much as anyone. But I also want to see the experience our nation is having, by listening to a new perspective, teach us a lesson that is broader. When the same group of people keeps having the same fruitless arguments over and over, sometimes the answer to the conflict is as simple as listening to someone with a different perspective.Gonzalez, Hogg and their friends are not really suggesting anything that hasn’t been suggested before. It’s just that it sounds so much more clear coming from them. They are suggesting solutions to us that are inspiring in their simplicity and familiarity.And their intentions are pure.So, kids, watch your mouths. Make sure whatever it is that comes out of them is as honest as everything you have said so far. The world is listening. If you keep doing this right, it just might become a habit.For all of us.FOOTNOTE: Michael Leppert is a public and governmental affairs consultant in Indianapolis and writes his thoughts about politics, government and anything else that strikes him at Contrariana.com.The City-County Observer posted this article without opinion, bias or editing.Print Friendly, PDF & EmailFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

first_imgMINISTER within the Ministry of Education with responsibility for Sport, Nicolette Henry, yesterday lauded the performance of Guyana’s amateur team that contested the second Caribbean Development Boxing Tournament (CDBT) which concluded on Sunday in Barbados.The 11-man Guyanese team and officials, returned to Guyana with 10 gold medals and one silver medal, while Christopher Moore, son coach Clifton Moore was adjudged Best Boxer of the CDBT.Addressing the boxers shortly after their arrival at the Eugene F. Correia International Airport at Ogle yesterday, Minister Henry congratulated the boxers and officials for a job well done and said that the Government of Guyana is “really committed to the development of sport”, so much so that the government has budgeted twice the amount that was budgeted in 2016.Athletes, she said, must go on and make their mark and with this in mind, the government will provide the opportunities as it will invest in athletes and young people. “It was a great experience for you (boxers) to make Guyana proud.”The boxers and officials were met on their arrival at the Airport by Minister Henry, Director of Sport Christopher Jones, president of the Guyana Boxing Association Steve Ninvalle and president of the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) K. Juman-Yassin and shortly after they were introduced to members of the media.Chairing the proceedings, Ninvalle noted that it was a historic moment for Guyana, since it was the most gold medals per capita captured by a team from these shores.Ninvalle reminded those present that it was a very difficult task to get sponsorship for the 11-member team plus officials to participate in the tournament.Best Boxer of the second CDBT Christopher MooreHe noted also that GOA president Juman-Yassin has a special place in his heart for the sport, having served as president of the-then Guyana Amateur Boxing Association years ago.The GBA president, who was recently re-elected unopposed said he is extremely elated with the boxers’ performance which tells him Guyana is going in the right direction where boxing is concerned and stated that once given the support things can only get better for the sport locally.He said winning the Caribbean championship is the first step but there are many more steps to be made. The next he said is dominating the Latin American region, then the World Championships and finally, the Olympics.GOA president K. Juman-Yassin in his remarks also lauded the performance of the boxers stating that he is heartened by the results and is glad to see a young bunch of boxers performing so outstandingly. “Once you continue in this vein, we (GOA) and the government will ensure you have funds to participate in different championships,” Juman-Yassin assured.Yassin declared that the GOA stands ready to revisit a system of providing stipends to selected boxers and called on Ninvalle to urgently commence discussions on the way forward.The GOA boss further stated that the GOA would like to do more for the sport by making the boxers full-time boxers, but there are certain things that will have to be worked out, since some of the boxers are still attending school while others are working with different organisations and companies.Juman-Yassin had a special word of congratulation for the team’s head coach, Sebert Blake, who was the last Guyanese coach to attend a coaching programme through the GOA and the Olympic Solidarity Movement which was held in Hungary some years ago.After bagging four gold medals during the first four nights of competition in the CDBT in Barbados, the Guyanese boxers added a further five gold medals and a silver to their overall tally, assuring them of overall championships honours.On Saturday evening Christopher Moore contested the lightweight division of the Youth Division and secured a 3-0 points verdict against Grenade’s Nelson Cyrus and Joel Williamson, fighting in the final of the lightweight division in the Elite category, forced the referee to stop his contest against Jamaica’s Ricardo Carter, to win gold medals.Guyana’s lightweight Colin Lewis contesting the light welterweight division of the Elite category caused the referee to stop his fight against Barbados’ Derek Hymer during the first round.Desmond Amsterdam then added another gold medal to Guyana’s tally as he secured a third round TKO win over Jamaica’s Jonathan Hanson in their middleweight contest of the Elite category.Guyana’s Elite category super heavyweight boxer Jason Bakker then crowned the evening off with a 3-0 points win against Jamaica’s Ricardo Brown.But Guyana’s other Elite boxer, Kevin Allicock, who was on show on Saturday and from whom much was anticipated had to settle for a silver medal, as he lost on points in the second round in his flyweight contest against Barbados’ Jabali Breedy.last_img read more

first_imgShare with your Friends:More Here’s the latest sneak peak Geocaching Challenges video and more information about this exciting evolution in geocaching. Geocaching Challenges are an innovative new way to experience and share location-based adventures around the world. Groundspeak is anticipating releasing Challenges on Geocaching.com later this week.  Geocaching Challenges will also be available the same via free smartphone apps for the iPhone, Android and Windows Phone 7 platforms.Groundspeak is beginning by launching two types of Challenges: Action and Photo. The video above describes what an Action Challenge is. Additional types of Challenges are slated to be added in the future.Geocachers will earn smileys for completing a Challenge. The smileys for Challenges will appear  separate from geocaches in user profiles, but will be part of your found/completed count. Geocaching.com Premium Members will be able to create Action and Photo Challenges. SharePrint RelatedGeocaching.com “Photo” Challenge – A Sneak PeekAugust 16, 2011In “Community”Geocaching.com Teams Up with Tomb Raider®January 11, 2012In “Community””Geocaching Rhode Island DeLorme Challenge” A Geocaching.com Lost & Found VideoOctober 26, 2010In “Lost & Found Stories”last_img read more

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Analysis#start Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img audrey watters The global economic downturn has lead to the perception that entrepreneurial opportunities in both the U.S. and Europe have declined. And with the ballooning debts in Europe, many have suggested that these opportunities in Europe are even more restricted.But is the U.S. really in better shape than Europe for entrepreneurship? According to an infographic created by Grasshopper, the differences between the regions aren’t as great as one might imagine.The infographic compares what it takes to become an entrepreneur in several Western European nations with what it takes in the U.S. The U.S. leads with entrepreneurial activity as a percentage of GDP: 11.3% in the U.S. as compared to the next closest competitor, the U.K. 6.3%.It’s not that the U.S. has the lowest barriers to starting a business. Sweden, the U.K. and the Netherlands all have fewer barriers, according to the infographic. Nor is it that the U.S. has proportionally more immigrant entrepreneurs.But the U.S. does have proportionately more entrepreneurs, and according to the infographic, they are among the most optimistic and least fearful. And perhaps this, rather than any legal or economic circumstance, is what makes the difference. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

first_imgA second successive honor for Ronaldo was expected after a season in which the Portuguese eclipsed his award counterparts in the trophy stakes.As well as Spanish league and Spanish Super Cup success, Ronaldo scored twice in the Champions League final against Juventus to win European soccer’s elite competition for the third time in four seasons.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutRonaldo’s coach at Madrid, Zinedine Zidane, was crowned coach of the year.FIFA has shifted its award ceremony from its usual January slot to October so players are judged across a season — based on the typical European schedule — rather than the calendar year. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Metta World Peace joins Lakers’ G League team as assistant coach Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police 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 Games The women’s award honored the Netherlands’ success at the European Championship in August. Lieke Martens, who scored in the final win over Denmark, won the player’s award and Sarina Wiegman collected the coaching accolade.The Puskas Award for best goal went to Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud for a scorpion-style kick. The Puskas Award-winning goal from an overhead back-heeled strike came on New Year’s Day in Arsenal’s 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace in the English Premier League. MOST READ Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPAcenter_img View comments LATEST STORIES Read Next Kin of Misamis Oriental hero cop to get death benefits, award — PNP Portuguese soccer player Christiano Ronaldo, second from right, and son Cristiano Ronaldo Jr., right, sit beside Argentinian soccer player Lionel Messi, left, and wife Antonella during the The Best FIFA 2017 Awards at the Palladium Theatre in London, Monday, Oct. 23, 2017. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)LONDON — Cristiano Ronaldo has caught up with Lionel Messi to become a five-time winner of FIFA’s best player award.The Real Madrid forward was crowned player of the year on Monday at the FIFA Best ceremony at the London Palladium theater attended by runner-up Messi and third-placed Neymar.ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMClast_img read more

first_imgArsenal boss Emery: I’ll enjoy my first Premier League Christmas – if we winby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal boss Unai Emery is sure he’ll enjoy his first Premier League Christmas – if they win their games.Having worked in Spain, Russia and France, Emery is more used to spending time with his family over the festive period. Instead, he was with his squad on Christmas Day finalising plans for this evening’s visit to Brighton.The Spaniard said: “Usually the holidays come around perfectly for us every time, but I am still going to enjoy it working.”I think it’s very important for the supporters (to see teams play over Christmas). “Playing against Brighton is perfect, Liverpool (Saturday) is perfect and playing on January 1 against Fulham is perfect. We are going to enjoy it… but only if we win.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgMan Utd, Real Madrid target Eder Militao favours England optionby Paul Vegas9 months agoSend to a friendShare the lovePorto defender Eder Militao is keen on a move to England.Militao is a target for Real Madrid president Florentino Perez this month.However, UOL Esporte says Militao favours a move to England.The Porto defender has been linked with Real Madrid in recent weeks with Militao looking set to depart at the end of the campaign.Everton, Liverpool and Manchester United are all credited with interest from England in the 20-year-old, who has a release clause of £45m. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Man Utd midfielder Paul Pogba out of AZ tripby Paul Vegas23 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United midfielder Paul Pogba has been ruled out of their Europa League trip to AZ Alkmaar.Pogba is out of the tie due to a recurrence of a foot injury he picked up in August.The Frenchman sustained the knock in the draw at Southampton at the start of the season and is yet to fully recover.He played 90 minutes in both the Carabao Cup win over Rochdale and the Premier League draw with Arsenal in the past week but will not travel to Holland for Thursday’s game. A United statement said: “Following a specialist’s opinion, Paul Pogba requires a period of further rest & conservative treatment for the foot injury he sustained in the game against Southampton in August.” last_img read more

first_img​Arsenal boss Emery: Martinelli not a strikerby Paul Vegas21 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveArsenal boss Unai Emery does not see Gabriel Martinelli as a striker despite his two goal performance against Standard Liege on Thursday.Playing as the Gunners’ leading man, Martinelli took his season tally to four from two starts in the resounding 4-0 victory.But Emery does not think the Brazilian will continue to play as a number nine.He said: “He prefers to play as a left winger – he also played as a right winger. I am using him as a striker because he played in that position in Brazil.”Striker is not the best position for him. But the first thing in his mind is to help us.”Tonight his performance and his aptitude was amazing.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more