Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ After a searing day at Melbourne Park when the temperature hit 40 Celsius (104 Fahrenheit), and tempers were tested, No. 9 Wawrinka was one of three seeded players to fall in the men’s draw.Wimbledon champion and No. 3-ranked Garbine Muguruza was one of five seeded players to lose in the women’s side on Day 4.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSix-time champion Novak Djokovic survived the round, but complained of the “brutal” heat in a four-set win over an ailing Gael Monfils that extended his record to 15-0 in their career head-to-heads.Djokovic is playing his first tournament since Wimbledon, and has remodeled his serve to take some load of his injured right elbow. Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. The heat peaked during Djokovic’s 4-6, 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 win over Monfils. Both players slouched over in the shade between points, earning warnings about time delays from the chair umpire.The win was a relief for Djokovic, who lost in a second-round shocker here last year, but he said officials need to be more considerate about the players in the conditions.Now seeded 14th, Djokovic needed four match points in an eight-minute last game before clinching the win against Mofils, who needed a medical timeout for heat stress and said he had trouble breathing.“It was obvious we both suffered on the court today,” Djokovic said. “Really tough conditions — brutal.”Djokovic, who won five of the six titles from 2011-2016, is a step closer to a possible meeting with fourth-seeded Alexander Zverev, who had a 6-1, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 win over Gojowczyk.It’s supposed to be even hotter on Friday, with a forecast high of 42 Celsius (108 Fahrenheit).No. 7 David Goffin and No. 13 Sam Querrey won’t have to deal with that after their second-round losses.Among the leading men advancing were 2009 U.S. Open champion Juan Martin del Potro, No. 19 Tomas Berdych, No. 21 Albert Ramos and No. 5 Dominic Thiem, who rallied to beat 190th-ranked American qualifier Denis Kudla 6-7 (6), 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-3. Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim SEA Games: PH still winless in netball after loss to Thais Warwinka was playing at night when the temperature dropped a few degrees but appeared lethargic and generally didn’t threaten 26-year-old Sandgren, who had never beaten a top 10 player and now has two wins at Grand Slam tournaments.Sandgren appeared to be slightly awkward at how lopsided it was against Wawrinka, who has a clearly visible scar running down his left knee.“I know it’s tough with a former champion,” he said. “I wish him the best on his road to recovery.”Muguruza also struggled with her fitness in the build up to the Australian Open, retiring from a game at the Brisbane International because of cramping, and withdrawing ahead of the Sydney International quarterfinals because of a thigh problem.Blisters from the hot court surface didn’t help her in a 7-6 (1), 6-4 loss to No. 88-ranked Hsieh Su-wei, who has been No. 1 in doubles but had a career-high ranking of 23rd in singles.ADVERTISEMENT PH military to look into China’s possible security threat to power grid ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims BeautyMNL open its first mall pop-up packed with freebies, discounts, and other exclusives LATEST STORIES That left only Maria Sharapova, Aneglique Kerber and French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko as Grand Slam winners in the women’s draw.Sharapova and Kerber meet in the third round, meaning only one of the remaining Australian Open winners can reach the second week.Sharapova, the 2008 Australian Open winner, beat No. 14-seeded Anastasija Sevastova 6-1, 7-6 (4) to avenge a fourth-round loss to her in last year’s U.S. Open. That was Sharapova’s first major since returning from a 15-month doping ban following a failed test here in 2016.Kerber, the 2016 champion, had a 6-4, 6-1 win over Donna Vekic before the Margaret Court Arena crowd sang “Happy Birthday” to celebrate her 30th birthday.“Happy to be playing tennis again like 2016,” said Kerber, who has won 11 straight matches.Still aiming for a first major, top-ranked Simona Halep, a two-time French Open finalist, held off 2014 Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard 6-2, 6-2. Halep next plays Lauren Davis.Ninth-seeded Johanna Konta lost in straight sets to U.S. lucky loser Bernarda Pera, who is ranked No. 123-ranked and making her Grand Slam debut. She didn’t even know she had a spot in the main draw until Margarita Gasparyan withdrew.“It feels amazing. I was ready to leave on Monday and then they told me I’m in,” said Pera, who next plays No. 20 Barbora Strycova.U.S. Open finalist Madison Keys opened with four straight aces and won the first 11 games in a 6-0, 6-1 win over No. 92-ranked Ekaterina Alexandrova.Also advancing were No. 6 Karolina Pliskova, No. 8 Caroline Garcia, No. 26 Agnieszka Radwanska, No. 28 Ash Barty and No. 29 Lucie Safarova. Benilde outlasts Arellano in shootout for NCAA football title United States’ Tennys Sandgren celebrates after defeating Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka in their second round match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE, Australia — Stan Wawrinka left it as late as possible before deciding his knee might just be good enough to get him through the Australian Open, site of his Grand Slam breakthrough.The 2014 champion clearly wasn’t fit enough against No. 97-ranked Tennys Sandgren, though, and made his earliest exit in a decade — 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 in the second round.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games MOST READ ‘We cannot afford to fail’ as SEA Games host – Duterte
Bayern Munich officials must be dreading the day Arjen Robben decides to retire or leave.The 33-year-old Dutch winger was at the heart of almost all of Bayern’s attacking play in the 5-1 rout of Arsenal that put the Champions League quarterfinals within reach on Wednesday. (Also read: Champions League: Whirlwind Bayern Munich rout sorry Arsenal)Robben was a constant threat to the Arsenal defense, his performance crowned early on with one of his trademark goals.But it was his runs, his interplay, his movement and the danger he posed any time he faced a defender that earned a standing ovation from Bayern fans when coach Carlo Ancelotti took him off with just two minutes remaining.Robben provided the breakthrough early on, cutting inside from the right to set his left foot, before letting fly with a shot that went in off the underside of the bar.”It worked before a few times,” he joked.Defenders might know what’s coming, but they seem helpless to stop it.Robben almost did it again minutes later, and he forced a corner with another effort shortly after that.Despite his own outstanding contribution, Robben was keen to focus on a great team performance overall.”In the second half, we really played some amazing football. We really killed the game,” he said.Altogether, Robben had three attempts on target apart from the goal, all blocked, while his interplay with Philipp Lahm and Thiago Alcantara helped make the Arsenal defense look weak.Nine passes went to Thiago, who scored two goals, and 20 to Lahm of 47 completed passes altogether. Almost nine out of every 10 attempted passes found their target.advertisement”It worked very well today,” Robben said. “I myself am a little surprised that we played so well. On the other hand, not so much, because I know that the team has a great character and the ability to always step up a level when it needs to.”Robben has a knack for scoring important goals. It was his 89th-minute strike that gave Bayern its last Champions League title against Bundesliga rival Borussia Dortmund at Wembley Stadium in London in 2013.Former Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld, who led the team to the Champions League title in 2001, has spoken of Bayern’s problem when it comes to replacing Robben, with neither Douglas Costa nor Kingsley Coman at the Dutch star’s level.Since joining from Real Madrid in 2009, Robben has scored 84 goals and set up 50 more in 156 league games.No wonder the club was so keen to extend his contract beyond this season, even if he’s entering the twilight of his career. Robben signed a one-year extension to June 2018 last month.”If Arjen has the feeling he can no longer compete at the highest level, then he’ll stop,” Robben’s father Hans said last month after his son signed the contract extension.On Wednesday’s showing, it doesn’t look like he needs to stop any time soon.
TCL, the company that holds the right to manufacture BlackBerry phones is planning to launch a KEYone sibling with some noticeable changes. Rumours and leaks around the upcoming BlackBerry device hint that it is going to be a special phone from BlackBerry. As per the rumours, the device is codenamed as Krypton and could sport a full touch screen display. Now there are some fresh reports that the phone could be called as BlackBerry Motion.There are talks that BlackBerry could launch the phone in October. The device is rumoured to come with 1080p display and backed by a 4000mAh battery. The BlackBerry Motion could be a mid-range phone with a Snapdragon processor.Goodbye, Krypton.Hello, BlackBerry Motion pic.twitter.com/lBsdpORHW4- Evan Blass (@evleaks) October 5, 2017The famous tipster Evan Blass has also shared a leaked image of the phone showing off its sleek metal build and that the phone would be called as BlackBerry Motion. The phone in question is seen with a home button and a front-facing fingerprint scanner embedded in the BlackBerry logo. A 3.5mm audio jack and a charging port placed next to it.Past rumours have it that BlackBerry’s upcoming phone could be a full touch screen, water and dust resistant device. Mahieu, head of global sales for TCL, told Engadget that the phone could come with IP67 rating and a battery that could power the phone for nearly 26 hours with “mixed use.”Mahieu had also said that the phone could survive in all weather conditions and company hopes that many iPhone and Galaxy users would switch to the BlackBerry phone when launched.advertisementThe Blackberry Krypton aka Motion has also received WiFi and Bluetooth certification. There are talks that BlackBerry is working two devices codename das Krypton and Juno.Also Read: Blackberry’s upcoming full touchscreen phone codenamed as Krypton is now WiFi certifiedBlackBerry recently unveiled the KEYone Limited Edition Black in India at Rs 39,990. The phone comes with BlackBerry’s typical QWERTY keypad and sports a 4.5-inch IPS LCD display. The device is powered by the Snapdragon 625 processor. There is 4GB RAM and the phone runs on Android Nougat. A 12MP rear camera and 8MP front camera on board.
MS Dhoni is currently on a break from international cricket after selectors decided to rest him from the ongoing Nidahas Trophy in Sri Lanka.After playing all six ODIs and three T20Is on India tour of South Africa, Dhoni is now making the most of his rare time off by spending some quality time with his family. The 36-year-old shared a video of him chilling out with his daughter Ziva and wife Sakshi Dhoni on Instagram, on Tuesday.The minute long video captioned “”Fun time with the family”, includes images of Dhoni in his garden with Ziva, Sakshi and his dogs.Dhoni will return to action when the Indian Premier League gets underway on April 7. The wicketkeeper-batsman will once again lead Chennai Super Kings, who are back after serving a two-year suspension.CSK will meet defending champions Mumbai Indians on the first day of the tournament.Making a comeback, the Chennai franchise got the core group of players back with Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, Faf du Plessis and Dwayne Bravo returning to the fold.Dhoni last played for India in South Africa where he was part of the side which defeated the Proteas team 5-1 and 2-1 in the ODI and T20I series respectively.Meanwhile, India defeated Sri Lanka by six wickets in the fourth T20I at Colombo in the ongoing T20I tri-series to take the revenge of the first match loss.advertisementBowling first, pacer Shardul Thakur returned with a career-best 4/27 to restrict Sri Lanka to 152/9. In reply, India made a poor start to the chase as they lost the top-order cheaply. But an unbeaten 42 from Manish Pandey and Dinesh Karthik’s 39 not out helped India win their second match in the tri-series.The ‘Men in Blue are currently top of the table with four points from three matches. The will now take on Bangladesh in the fifth match on March 14.
CACHE CREEK, B.C. – The RCMP says the fire chief of Cache Creek in British Columbia’s Interior is missing and may to have been swept away in a swollen creek early today.Searchers, including the Kamloops Search and Rescue team, a helicopter, a swift-water rescue team, a canine unit and dozens of volunteers are looking for Clayton Cassidy.The RCMP say the 59-year-old man went missing early today while checking water levels for Cache Creek and he was last seen near the water.Police say Cassidy’s vehicle was also found near the creek.Cassidy was given a Medal of Good Citizenship by the B.C. government last year for his efforts helping Cache Creek residents during a devastating flood in May 2015.The province issued a special information bulletin on Friday, urging caution in B.C.’s southern and central Interior regions because increased snowmelt and higher than normal rain levels are pushing rivers and creeks over their banks.
CALGARY – Browsing on a website that calls itself the Chicago Evening Post, one might have assumed five Calgary city councillors are moonlighting as journalists under different names in the Windy City.The purported news site’s senior editor is listed as Dean Weaver originally from Peoria, Ill., who cut his teeth in Buffalo and Pittsburgh and conducted several special investigations for the Guardian newspaper in Britain.But the photo attached to the short biography was that of Coun. Sean Chu until it, and those of his alleged colleagues, were taken down Tuesday.“I’m a senior editor. I can boss other councillors around,” Chu said with a laugh earlier.Chu said he’s puzzled as to why municipal politicians from Calgary would appear on a Chicago site, but he’s not bothered.“It’s funny, no matter what,” he said. “Of all the cities in North America, why did they pick Calgary? There must be a reason. It’s a good thing.”A phone number listed on the Evening Post’s website went through to a hair salon in Chicago called Salon Zero One One.E-mail addresses for Weaver and his supposed coworkers are listed on the website, but none replied to messages on Tuesday. A message to a general address for the site was not returned either.The Library of Congress government website says the Chicago Evening Post newspaper, founded in 1890, stopped publishing when it was absorbed by the Chicago Daily News in 1932.Coun. Jyoti Gondek also had a sense of humour about a doppelganger working as a lifestyle editor in Chicago under the byline Liv Carpenter.“We have so much work to do that this is probably not something I’m going to worry about too much, but I am getting a kick out of it,” she said.Carpenter’s bio says she played volleyball and annoyed a lot of professors during her time at the University of Chicago. Gondek joked that she, too, may have also annoyed some university professors in her day.“She enjoys running, practising minimalism, reading whatever Oprah recommends, and trying out the next best skin-care item that probably won’t work,” Carpenter’s bio says.Coun. Jeromy Farkas — a.k.a. contributor Greg McCreary, a four-year Chicago denizen who covers Congress — said he didn’t know what to think when he saw his likeness on the site.“It was the first sort of semi-fan page I’d seen of council, but it was an interesting way to go about it.”Farkas said the matter points to some serious issues about the modern media landscape.“Sometimes there’s really no way, with how graphics and technology have advanced, to be able to tell what’s real and true and what isn’t.”Coun. Jeff Davison’s photo appeared above a photo of Rick Kings, who mostly covers sports and community events in Chicago.“Since taking office here, I have much less time to cover the Cubs, but I’m making it work,” Davison said.Steff Martin, who the website says covers trending news stories, bore an uncanny resemblance to Coun. Diane Colley-Urquhart.A reverse image search for a sixth staffer — deputy politics editor Elizabeth Antoski — suggested she is actually Detroit city councillor Mary Sheffield.There is no evidence online that any of those named on the website have worked as journalists.“The majority of our news is provided by staff writers who are all experts in their respective fields. Other news is provided by news agencies and freelancers,” the website says. “Our paper offers authoritative insight and opinion on news important to the people of Chicago.”Christopher Waddell, with Carleton University’s School of Journalism and Communication, said the site seems to be bogus.But he said its content is much more benign than that offered by fake news sites during the 2016 U.S. election, much of which was designed to damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign.The Evening Post’s top stories include police officers accused of stealing from drug traffickers and a major expansion to O’Hare International Airport — both of which were covered by established media outlets.“Maybe the Chicago Evening Post is just an attempt to capitalize on Google ads,” Waddell said. “Maybe they’re trying to establish something that they want to use for some purpose later on.”
HALIFAX – Police say they will be present at three schools in Halifax today after unspecified threats were made against them.Officers say they will be at Caledonia Junior High School, Rocky Lake Junior High School and Ian Forsyth Elementary as a precaution.A police statement says they were notified of the threats at about 10 a.m. Wednesday and are investigating.They say they do not believe students are at risk and school closures were not necessary.In a message sent to parents, Caledonia principal Lisa Vaughan says the school contacted police after learning about a threat and that “the safety of students and staff is priority.”Police are asking anyone with information about the alleged threats to contact them or Crime Stoppers, but have not said what the threat was or how it was made.(Global News)
APTN National NewsThe time was 1884 in a small settlement in the North-West at the parish of St. Antoine du Padaue in Batoche.At the time there was great excitement on the completion of the church. Father Julien Moulin wanted a bell to sound in the small bell tower, so the Bishop Vital-Justin Grandin of the diocese of St. Albert purchased a few bells for his missions in the North-West. Oblate records describe the Bell of Batoche as a small silver bell weighing about 20 lbs. It was purchased for the sum of $25.It was customary to “baptize” the church bells, so Bishop Grandin on September 2, 1884 baptized the small bell “Marie-Antoinette.” Marie-Antoinette’s god-parents were Xavier Letendre dit Batoche and his sister Marie Letendre-Champagne. The honour bestowed on this family was because Xavier had founded the community.It’s interesting to note that the bell reportedly bears an inscription “Vital-Justin Grandin, Eveque de St. Albert” along with the bishop’s coat of arms. The date of the blessing should also be there as it was customary at the time.During the North-West Rebellion, at the Battle of Batoche on May 12, 1885, the Metis and their allies were defeated by the Canadian militia. The Bell of Batoche along with numerous other items from the church, were stolen by Canadian soldiers. The bell was displayed as a war prize by two soldiers from Millbrook, Ont. at the Royal Canadian Legion there until is disappearance in 1991.– Courtesy of the Metis Culture and Heritage Resource Centre.
Rabat – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has spoken out about Mesut Ozil’s decision to leave the German national football team over “racism and disrespect.”In the Turkish press on Tuesday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan revealed that he called Mesut Ozil to greet him after his choice to leave the German team. “I spoke with him yesterday [Monday]. They can’t digest the fact that he posed for a picture with me. I support the statements of Mesut Özil,” said the Turkish president. “Such a racist treatment towards a young man who has given his all to the German national team for his religious beliefs is unacceptable.”On Sunday, the 29-year-old midfielder for Arsenal announced that he is leaving the Mannschaft, the German team, after he was harshly insulted with racist words over his picture with Erdogan and Germany’s shocking loss to South Korea which resulted in an early exit from the 2018 World Cup.After the decision of the German-Turkish football player, the Turkish government expressed support for the native of Gelsenkirchen, north-west Germany. The Turkish Minister of Justice, Abdulhamit Gul, praised on Twitter the “goal” of the playmaker “against the virus of fascism.”Germany’s Social Democrat Minister of Justice Katarina Barley reacted sympathetically, saying, “It’s alarming if a great German football player like Mesut Ozil no longer feels wanted in his country.”For the past two years, Turkey and Germany have had particularly strained relations. Ankara has denounced Berlin’s accusations of Turkey’s repressive drift after the 2016 attempted coup against Erdogan. The two countries have, however, been trying to ease tensions for several months now.Speaking about Ozil’s shocking departure, his coach Joachim Low said through his agent that he had no clue that his player was leaving. Low was on holiday in Sardinia when he learned on the internet the statements of the 2014 World Cup champion.
LONDON — Few would argue that Britain is in what is often referred to as a bit of a pickle. A crisis in fact, undoubtedly of historic proportions.With the country mired in confusion and recrimination over how to leave the European Union, many of Britain’s centuries-old institutions have clogged up, struggling to meet the challenges of Brexit.Anthony Seldon, the historian and the vice chancellor of the University of Buckingham, calls it the “biggest political and constitutional crisis” to afflict the country in 300 years — since the Glorious Revolution of 1688 when King James II was replaced by the joint monarchy of King William III and Queen Mary II.A look at some of the other crises that have beset Britain since the end of World War II:___SUEZ CRISISBefore Brexit, arguably the biggest crisis of British diplomacy and its standing in the world occurred in 1956 in the Suez Canal, which connects the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea. When Egypt’s leader, Gamal Abdel Nasser, nationalized the canal, Britain, in secret, along with France and Israel, joined forces to take control of it.Worried about a potential Soviet intervention, U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower warned the coalition to withdraw. They duly did. Within months, it had spelled the end of Anthony Eden’s premiership in Britain. More importantly, it crystallized the moment when Britain realized that its great power status had come to an end.___PROFUMO SEX SCANDALEden’s successor, Harold Macmillan, wasn’t the type to get entangled in imperial misadventures. He hastened Britain’s decolonization and focused on Europe. However, his premiership was cut short when his Secretary of State for War John Profumo was implicated in a sex-and-spy scandal with showgirl Christine Keeler, who was also having a liaison with a Russian naval attache at the same time.The scandal, which came at the height of the Cold War, shattered the reputation of Macmillan’s government and the prime minister quit in 1963. A year later, the Conservative Party lost power for the first time in 13 years.___3-DAY WEEKAfter surprisingly winning the 1970 election, Conservative Prime Minister Edward Heath sought to tackle the government’s increasing reliance on trade unions. However, his premiership was soon overwhelmed by mounting sectarian violence in Northern Ireland, including the “Bloody Sunday” killing of 13 people at a civil rights march in Londonderry in January 1972.His premiership was cut short two years later when the powerful coal miners went on an overtime ban that wreaked havoc.In December 1973, following the Yom Kippur War between Israel and Arab nations that saw the OPEC oil cartel quadruple oil prices, Heath declared a state of emergency as the country couldn’t meet its energy needs. Heath imposed a three-day working week and speed restrictions. Professional soccer on Sunday, banned in the country for decades, also became a feature for the first time because there wasn’t enough energy to power all the floodlights required on the traditional schedule on Saturdays.Amid all the chaos, Heath called an early election for February 1974, and asked “Who governs Britain?”Too many said “not you obviously” and Labour returned to power.___WINTER OF DISCONTENTThe unions continued to shake the political landscape throughout the 1970s. After Britain was bailed out by the International Monetary Fund in 1976, the Labour government sought to work with the unions on getting Britain’s economy back to health.After years of pay restraint, they snapped and there was massive industrial unrest during the winter of 1978-1979 — a period commonly referred to as the Winter of Discontent. The dead lay unburied and the garbage piled up. Britain was, according to many commentators at the time, becoming ungovernable. That was particularly true in Northern Ireland, where the violence continued and spilled over onto the British mainland.In many ways, the late 1970s has echoes with today’s Brexit crisis. The government of then-prime minister, James Callaghan, just like Theresa May’s now, was a minority one and faced knife-edge votes to get things done. Eventually, Callaghan lost a vote of confidence and Margaret Thatcher’s Conservatives won the ensuing election.___FALKLANDS WARThatcher became the longest-serving British prime minister of the 20th century, lasting until 1990. But it wasn’t pre-ordained that she would be. By 1982, her government was in trouble. The strict monetarist economic medicine she used to bring down inflation had led to interest rates rocketing and unemployment spiking to the previously unimagined 3 million-mark. In 1981, riots erupted across Britain.In 1982, salvation came from the unlikely source of Argentina. The country’s military junta invaded the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic, a relic of the British Empire. After a little more than two months of conflict, the British prevailed. Thatcher had triumphed and subsequently won two sizeable election victories.___CURRENCY CRASHBritain had in 1973 joined what was then called the European Economic Community. By 1992, it had joined the Exchange Rate Mechanism, whereby the pound floated within narrow ranges against other European currencies such as the German Deutsche Mark. It was the precursor to the euro but the experience ended in humiliation for Britain when hedge funds, including the Hungarian billionaire George Soros, betted against the pound — and won.Sept. 16, 1992 became known as “Black Wednesday” — a day that the British government was vanquished by currency speculators. Though the pound’s exit from the ERM heralded a period of strong growth for the British economy, the government of Prime Minister John Major became increasingly divided over Europe. Tony Blair led the Labour Party back into government for the first time in 18 years.___IRAQ WARAll went smoothly for Blair — at first. The British economy was in the midst of an unprecedented period of economic growth and peace had finally been achieved in Northern Ireland through 1998’s Good Friday Agreement.But Blair’s agenda was overwhelmed by the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks in the U.S. Blair became a close ally of President George W. Bush, and his decision to participate in the war in Iraq alienated many — not least because no weapons of mass destruction were ever found. Blair’s reputation has never fully recovered.___FINANCIAL CRISISBlair’s successor, post 2007, was Gordon Brown, his long-time Treasury chief. His time at the helm was marked by the global financial crisis, the greatest peacetime shock to afflict the global economy since the depression of the 1930s.Following the collapse of U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers in September 2008, the financial crisis went global. Banks around the world, including big U.K. names such as Lloyds and Royal Bank of Scotland, had to be bailed out by the taxpayer. Britain endured its deepest recession since WWII. Though Brown won plaudits for his handling of the crisis, he lost the 2010 general election.___BREXIT SAGAFive years later, Prime Minister David Cameron promised to honour one aspect of his Conservative Party’s manifesto — a commitment to hold a referendum on Britain’s 40-plus-year membership of the EU.In June 2016, Britain voted for Brexit, and Cameron’s successor May has been swamped by the fallout of that decision, in particular how it affects the seamless border between Northern Ireland and Ireland — a mainstay of the Good Friday Agreement that brought peace.It is arguably the greatest of all Britain’s postwar crises.___Follow AP’s full coverage of Brexit at: https://www.apnews.com/BrexitPan Pylas, The Associated Press
TORONTO — Manulife Financial Corp. says its earnings and sales surged in the first quarter as a result of strong growth in Asia.The Toronto-based insurer says its net income attributable to shareholders increased 59 per cent to $2.18 billion or $1.08 per diluted share for the three months ended March 31, up from $1.37 billion or 67 cents per share a year earlier.Core earnings rose 15 per cent to $1.55 billion or 76 cents per share, from $1.3 billion or 64 cents per share in the first quarter of 2018.The company was expected to earn 70 cents per share in core earnings, according to analysts polled by Thomson Reuters Eikon.Revenues grew to $23.5 billion from $8.75 billion in the prior year period.Manulife CEO Roy Gori says new business grew to $519 million, with double-digit increases across all operating segments. Companies in this story: (TSX:MFC)The Canadian Press
A 26-year-old Hamilton man faces drug and weapon charges after being recognized by a police officer.Police say the man was cycling northbound on Victoria Ave. near Barton St. around 2 p.m. Wednesday.An officer on patrol recognized him as someone wanted in connection with an incident from 2017.The man was arrested.While being searched, officers found methamphetamine and fentanyl along with brass knuckles and a knife.He’s been charged with two counts of possession of a prohibited weapon and possession of a controlled substance.The man is expected to appear in court on Thursday.
According to a spokesman for the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), Ahmad Behzad was beaten and arrested on 19 March, immediately following the opening of the Herat Office of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission. Although he was released on the same day, UNAMA has learned that he was ordered to leave Herat, the city where he and his family live.”If those allegations are confirmed, it will be the urgent responsibility of the Afghan authorities both in Kabul and in Herat to investigate the case fully and to make sure that any wrongdoing does not go unpunished,” spokesman Manoel de Almeida e Silva said today, stressing that it is not acceptable that a journalist is prevented from doing his work in his own country.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is speaking out about the importance of news reporting and protection of freedom of expression in a video message released today for a grassroots campaign, the ‘Day Without News.'”A day without news may seem unthinkable in this connected and globalized world. Yet every day, the voices of the news are being silenced,” the Secretary-General said. A journalist is killed every week, and 9 out of 10 of those cases go unpunished, Mr. Ban noted. The head of the UN agency mandated to promote and protect freedom of expression and press freedom, Irina Bokova, condemned a record 121 killings of journalists, media workers and citizen reporters last year.As part of an effort to combat this violence, the Paris-based UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) launched the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity.The goal, Mr. Ban said, is simple: “to ensure that every journalist can do her or his job safely.”Every year on 3 May, the UN marks World Press Freedom Day – an opportunity to speak out for the safety of journalists, and for combating impunity, in the real and digital worlds.The Secretary-General’s video is hosted on adaywithoutnews.com. According to the site, the ‘Day Without News’ campaign originated during a panel discussion with journalists at UN Headquarters, and aims to raise awareness of the hostile and dangerous conditions that many reporters and photographers work under around the world.The Day is marked symbolically on 22 February – the anniversary of the 2012 killings of The Sunday Times correspondent, Marie Colvin, and freelance photographer, RÃƒÂ©mi Ochlik, in Homs, Syria.According to reports, no one has been held accountable for their deaths.
Purpose of the Post:To be responsible for organising SMMT led events throughout the year working closely with the rest of the Communications and International Department.To assist with key SMMT communications activity and to plan activities on industry wide issuesQualifications/Skills/Attributes required:Educated to degree level or beyond.Experience of managing people, projects and external agencies.An understanding of media requirements and the national news agenda. (NB this is not a Press Office role).Ability to coordinate multi-stakeholder projects.Ability to work confidently and effectively with all members of SMMT staff and industry representatives.A creative approach to arranging events to assist positioning SMMT and the UK automotive industry as a leader in the global automotive market.Ability to manage events and sponsor relationships.First class financial planning and budgetary process and proven experience of managing major event budgets.First class written and verbal English skills.Strong interpersonal abilities and the ability to forge and maintain relationships across the industry.Strong decision making abilities.Competent IT skills – Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and Internet Explorer essential.Experience of event organisation. Main duties include:To help manage and deliver a number of SMMT events planned for each calendar year. To include: The Annual Dinner, Test Day, the International Automotive Summit and other key SMMT events eg SMMT Connected.Ensure all SMMT events are delivered at a consistently high professional standardTo help support SMMT’s role in the CV Show especially PR, promotion and event operations.To be responsible for organising these SMMT events: from planning locations, managing agencies, identifying speakers, framing the editorial structure for events and panel debates, securing sponsors and securing event attendees. To manage post event communications to stakeholders and attendee.To manage external agencies helping to deliver SMMT led events.To manage financial planning for events and all event budgetary management including processing of invoices and purchase orders in close coordination with the SMMT Finance department and SMMT Events Manager.To manage branding of SMMT led events including commissioning branding materials from external agencies.To assist the International Team in the planning of international events SMMT helps to arrange where needed.Some out of hours working may be required for this role, depending on the nature of events organised.Attending and managing events organised, on the day(s) as appropriate.Supporting the media team around media outreach with journalists eg Test Day and arranging all necessary accreditation with Millbrook.To assist with key communications projects in SMMT including commissioning and planning Surveys and External Research work etc to help promote the UK automotive industry in the media and with key stakeholders.To help assist with communications plans for key industry wide issues where necessary and to draft key messaging material and activities.Other duties as required.Salary and benefits package:The package includes private medical insurance, company pension scheme, flexi time, 25 days annual leave, childcare vouchers, interest free season ticket loan (after 6 months).Deadline for Applications:28 August 2015Method of Application:Prospective candidates should e-mail email@example.com with a CV and covering letter quoting your salary expectations.Early applications are encouraged as interviews will take place and the position offered before this date if a suitable candidate is found.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
Perhaps more surprising than the fact that another defending champ fell was just how Germany managed to let its chance slip away. It peppered South Korean goalkeeper Jo Hyeon-Woo with scoring attempts, out-shooting the Koreans 26-11 and holding possession for 70 percent of the match. According to ESPN’s expected goals model, we would predict that a team with Germany’s opportunities would net 2.9 goals — instead, it scored zero.It was the sixth-most expected goals that any team has had during this World Cup; the five teams above Germany averaged 3.6 actual goals per game. But Germany was unable to break through when even one goal potentially would have been enough to propel it to the next phase of the tournament. (South Korea’s late goals were essentially the product of Germany playing an all-out offensive strategy, knowing it needed to win outright because of Sweden’s lead over Mexico in the other group game happening at the same time.) According to ESPN’s Stats & Information Group, Germany’s 2.9-goal shortfall was the worst in any World Cup match since 1966: Biggest upsets of the 2018 World CupFor match winners, according to pregame Soccer Power Index odds Jun. 22Nigeria2Iceland0343036 DateTeamScoreTeamScoreWinDrawLose DateTeamOpponentExpectedActualDiff. 7/19/1966ItalyNorth Korea1.90-1.9 6/25/2014FranceEcuador1.80-1.8 6/27/2018GermanySouth Korea2.90-2.9 6/17/2014BrazilMexico1.80-1.8 6/30/2014GermanyAlgeria4.52-2.5 Say goodbye to another defending World Cup champion: Germany, the team that won it all four years ago, is officially out of the 2018 tournament. Despite ultimately only needing a win over South Korea — the fourth-worst team in the field, according to our pre-tournament soccer power index ratings — to advance to the knockout round, the Germans were upended 2-0 on Wednesday in what was easily the biggest upset of the World Cup thus far. (Going into the match, our model only gave South Korea a 5 percent probability of winning.) Jun. 27South Korea2Germany05%14%81% Source: ESPN Stats & Info The World Cup’s most disappointing games since 1966Biggest single-match gaps between actual and expected goals, 1966-2018 6/14/1978PolandArgentina2.10-2.1 6/19/1974NetherlandsSweden2.00-2.0 Source: ESPN Stats & Info 6/18/2006CroatiaJapan2.00-2.0 6/18/2014SpainChile2.00-2.0 Expected Goals 7/1/2014SwitzerlandArgentina2.10-2.1 Jun. 25Saudi Arabia2Egypt1232849 The loss had a major ripple effect on the rest of the World Cup. With Germany — which we rated as the team most likely to make the Round of 16 going into the tournament (oops!) — on the sidelines, Brazil added 3.5 percentage points to its odds of winning the World Cup. That’s the most of any team — Brazil might have faced the Germans in the next round had they advanced — but England and Belgium were the next-biggest gainers (other than Sweden, which punched its ticket to the knockouts by beating Mexico) because of their own potential proximity to Germany in the bracket.Now there’s one fewer powerhouse for the top teams to contend with — and one more defending champion to toss onto the pile of recent disappointments.Jay Boice contributed research. UnderdogFavoriteWinner’s Pregame Probabilities
The best thing to happen to the Washington Nationals this offseason might be Bryce Harper turning down the $300 million contract offered by the club at the end of the season. Rather than allocating vast resources to one free agent superstar, the Nationals made smaller moves to shore up their weak spots, signing starting pitcher Patrick Corbin on Tuesday to bolster their rotation and adding two catchers earlier in the offseason.It wasn’t clear if the Nationals would be able to compete without Harper. But according to some forecasts, they are already better without him. They have improved themselves in a National League East where every team — save for the Miami Marlins — seems intent on trying to dramatically improve this offseason.After the Nationals finished 82-80 last season, FanGraphs projects them as the sixth-best team in the majors at the moment — the best team in the division — with a 91-71 forecasted record. While it’s unclear whether the Nationals still want to compete for Harper, they don’t need him to improve over last season.Baseball is a weak-link sport, meaning that the quality of the minor contributors on a team is more important than in a sport like basketball, where star power is paramount. Baseball, by rule and nature, spreads around opportunity more uniformly. A slugger hits only once every turn through a lineup, an ace pitcher pitches once every five days. The same is true for the light-hitting starting shortstop and the back-of-the-rotation starting pitcher. While it’s possible to win with a stars-and-scrubs approach, that’s inherently riskier, given that one injury can derail a club’s entire season. That’s one reason that a successful MLB team rarely allocates more than 16 percent of its payroll to one player.With this in mind, the most efficient way to improve may be to strengthen the weakest links of a roster, not to target brand-name stars as saviors. A team can improve itself quickly and often more efficiently by bringing the most underperforming areas of its roster closer to, or exceeding, average production. It’s an idea the NEIFI analytics company attempted to quantify. (NEIFI co-founder Adam Guttridge was hired by the Mets to lead their data-science department.)While Corbin wasn’t cheap — he signed a six-year, $140 million contract — he upgrades what was a top-heavy Nationals staff that had question marks after Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg. Perhaps the Corbin signing was made possible by payroll flexibility coming from the club moving away from resigning Harper. Corbin could provide a similar production bump as Harper for a lesser cost. With his 3.5 forecasted WAR, Corbin projects as a 2.8-WAR upgrade over the Nats’ incumbent fifth-best starting pitching option, Joe Ross. (The Nationals project to receive 2.7 WAR from right fielders without Harper. Harper projects to produce 4.9 WAR in 2019.)But even before signing Corbin, the Nationals had cheaply and significantly improved upon their weakest link.The Nationals’ catchers have been among the most ineffective positional groups in recent seasons. Since 2015, the club ranks 27th in catcher wins above replacement, according to FanGraphs. That mark doesn’t even include catcher framing metrics, in which the Nationals were also one of the worst teams in 2017 (-10.7 framing runs) and below-average last season (-4.5 framing runs), as reported by Baseball Prospectus. And according to weighted runs created plus, a measure of offensive ability that adjusts for park and run-scoring environments,1100 is league average. Nationals catchers were 27th in the majors, with a wRC+ mark of only 64.2All catchers combined for a wRC+ of 84 in 2018.So it makes sense that the Nationals made upgrading their catcher group a priority in acquiring Yan Gomes in a trade with the Cleveland Indians last week and signing Kurt Suzuki to a two-year, $10 million deal in mid-November.At a time when catcher is the weakest offensive position in baseball (84 wRC+), Suzuki and Gomes are average performers compared with all hitters but virtual stars compared with the rest of the catching field. Suzuki posted a 108 wRC+ with the Braves last season (and a 127 mark in 2017). Gomes had a 101 wRC+ in Cleveland (on top of a 92 career mark). The players represent a major upgrade over Matt Wieters, who entered the past two seasons as the club’s primary catcher. Gomes, who will likely be the starter, is an above-average defender for his career.Consider the upgrade Gomes and Suzuki would have provided over the past two seasons. Nationals catchers combined for 0.5 WAR IN 640 plate appearances last year, according to FanGraphs. Gomes and Suzuki combined for 4.2 WAR (3.3 WAR when adjusted for 640 plate appearances). In 2017, Nationals catchers produced an MLB-worst -1.2 WAR. In 692 plate appearances in 2017, Gomez and Suzuki combined for 4.3 WAR. Catcher depth is key as the position requires more off days and the risk of injury is higher.For comparison, Harper has averaged 3.8 WAR over the past three seasons.Harper has superstar upside, but he could require a record contract commitment — and the Nationals have an outfield loaded with talent in Adam Eaton and young stars Juan Soto and Victor Robles.(A warning to clubs pursuing Harper and Manny Machado: Of the five highest-paid players in MLB history, three — Alex Rodriguez three years into his deal, Giancarlo Stanton three years into his deal and Robinson Cano five years into deal — were eventually traded to New York clubs, and the other two, Albert Pujols and Miguel Cabrera, are nearly untradeable.)The Nationals are paying Suzuki a relatively modest $4 million in 2019, and Gomes is owed a club-friendly $7 million. In other words, the Nationals are paying a relative bargain if Gomes and Suzuki upgrade the position by 3 or more WAR, roughly what Harper has brought to the outfield in recent years. Without Harper, they had payroll flexibility to improve elsewhere.For every win above replacement, a player on the open market in 2017 could be expected to receive more than $10 million. By that measure, the Nationals have done well. With Corbin and the catcher upgrades, they project to have improved by 6 WAR at a cost of $34.3 million in 2019 when combining Gomes and Suzuki’s salaries with Corbin’s.The Nats are not the only NL East team to have filled voids.Josh Donaldson signed a one-year, $23 million deal with the Braves after averaging 3.2 WAR per season the past two years. The defending NL East champs elected to take on short-term risk to seek reward in adding the talented but injury-prone Donaldson. With the addition, the Braves strengthened one of their few weak links and now project to be average or better at every position except left field.The Phillies had too many weak links last season, ranking 22nd or worse in six position groups according to Baseball-Reference.com: shortstop, second base, third base, left field, center field and right field. They addressed arguably their weakest link entering 2019, shortstop — ranking 30th in WAR last year — in landing Jean Segura from the rebuilding Seattle Mariners.Segura averaged 4 WAR the past three seasons, according to FanGraphs, and is signed to a club-friendly five-year, $70 million deal through 2022, with a club option for 2023. (The Phillies also shed the contract of Carlos Santana in the deal and added bullpen arms Juan Nicasio and James Pazos.) Segura is a borderline star. The Phillies have cash to fill other voids, and they need to do just that to beat their 78 projected wins. They could use that cash on either Harper or Machado, both of whom have reportedly been in their sights.As the for the Mets, new general manager Brodie Van Wagenen has been in search of brand-name star talent. In Cano, the Mets added a well-known star. But Cano does not directly address the Mets’ weaknesses. Second base tied with left field as the Mets’ most productive position group last season. Jeff McNeil had projected to be the club’s most valuable position player (3.0 WAR) — just shy of Cano (3.4 WAR projection), according to FanGraphs projections.3To make room for Cano, McNeil can play third, where Todd Frazier is penciled in, and perhaps other corner positions. Cano also played 88 innings at first base last season in Seattle.While Cano has aged well, he did turn 36 in October. He’s going to decline at some point. After receiving cash contributions from the Mariners, Van Wagenen — a former agent with no front office experience — gave a deal to Cano that amounts to a five-year, $60 million contract. Cano and elite reliever Edwin Diaz — who will upgrade a need area — cost the Mets dollars and two top 100 overall prospects in their No. 3 (Jarred Kelenic) and No. 4 ranked prospects (Justin Dunn) in the trade.The Mets ranked 20th or worse in the majors in production at catcher, first base, shortstop, third base and in their bullpen last season. The Mets didn’t need a star second baseman. They needed to strengthen their weakest links.
DTEK Energy has acquired shares in PJSC Svitlo Shakhtaria, Druzhkivka Machine Building Plant LLC and Mining Machines LLC, which formerly were part of Corum Group, which unites the machine building assets of SCM Financial and Industrial Group.“These enterprises are the main suppliers of machinery and equipment for coal mining in the company. This transaction will enable DTEK Energy to reduce costs of mining and tunneling equipment, provide coal companies with spare parts on time and also give the opportunity to improve the quality of warranty and post-warranty service,” DTEK Energy said.According to company CEO Dmytro Sakharuk, investments in production of mining equipment are a strategic step of DTEKpower holding. “DTEK Energy is an example of effective development of mines in Ukraine. Over 12 years of work, we’ve managed to almost double coal production. In many respects due to the fact that we know what technologies and what machinery are needed for coal enterprises operating in the conditions of ultrathin coal seams. This transaction will allow creating a full production cycle in the coal mining sector of the company. We believe that under the conditions when Ukraine needs to increase its own gas coal extraction, this decision will positively influence the result,” he said.Corum Group is one of the largest manufacturers of equipment and suppliers of integrated mining solutions.
The number of business start-ups in Greece declined by 20 per cent in the first half of the year on an annual basis, according to data from the General Commercial Register.The figures reveal the degree to which business activity has stagnated in the last six months due to the uncertainty and the growing concern in the market about the country’s economy.The number of companies taken off the register also posted a decline in the the first half of the year compared with 2014, but market professionals say that this picture may well have changed in the last 10 days due to the imposition of capital controls and the closure of banks.The register’s figures show that 16,095 enterprises were created from January 1 until June 30 against 20,110 in the same period in 2014. The decline reached its peak in February, amounting to an annual 32.6 percent rate.The vast majority of new enterprises (68 percent) were one-person companies, pointing to the fact that this small form of entrepreneurship that has developed since the start of the year is to a great extent one of necessity.Source: Kathimerini Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram