Jamaica’s female beach volleyballer, Kai Wright, said their fifth place finish at the Norceca Beach Volleyball tour in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, on the weekend resulted from their passion and determination and believes she and partner, Danielle Perry, will make it to Rio this summer. Wright noted that Perry lives abroad so regular practice is not possible and tournament like these play an important role in their preparation. However, the main reason they went to the Dominica Republic was to gain experience and practice. “The main purpose was to prepare for the third round of Olympic qualifiers, get selected for the Pan Am Games, get practice, see other teams and get some experience going into the third round. “The tournament was very challenging. Every team played us competitively because we were the underdogs. Nobody expected anything from us, much less to get a big placing, so they came at us really hard. But we played real hard, worked together and achieved fifth place and it shows the passion we have for the sport,” said Wright. “My partner is from Florida so we don’t get to practice together much, but she is very passionate, she is very determined, she goes hard and plays really hard, she is very motivating, so I have a tremendous partner. Over the weekend we learnt a lot about each other playing wise and we are just working as a team,” she told The Gleaner. She thinks they are strong enough to seriously compete for a spot in the Rio Olympics when they travel to the Casova Women’s Beach Volleyball Olympic third round qualifiers in El Salvador next week. “The more we go and represent and play the more the results are coming, it means our performance is getting better every time and that is what we aim to achieve,” she surmised. “We are very prepared, we have camp where the overseas players come down and we train every day, two times for the day. Hopefully we’ll go to the third round and be ready mentally and physically and I am very confident we can reach the Olympics,” said Wright. “We have one week before we leave for the third round and we’re looking to qualify and put Jamaica on top. We want to pave the way for the younger volleyball players, so we will work hard, play hard and qualify for the Olympics,” she promised. VOLLEYBALL:
Bronze, silver or gold: South African female sporting heroes have long carried the pride of the country on their shoulders and in their hearts.But raising the profile of South African women in sport takes blood, sweat and tears, on and off the field. Sporting bodies and pioneers in the industry are hard at work to ensure that women’s sport is well established, receives sufficient financial backing, and gets free and fair media coverage.One sure fact is that there’s always something to celebrate. SA’s National Women’s soccer team, Banyana Banyana made history in November last year after qualifying for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup for the first time. The team, led by their fearless coach Desiree Ellis, will be heading out to France to compete in June.A star player worthy of a special mention is Portia Modise, retired Banyana Banyana’s all-time leading goal-scorer who has been selected as one of 13 FIFA ambassadors for the upcoming Women’s World Cup, a role she has taken up with high regards. Apart from her excellent striker skills on the field, Portia has always advocated for women in sport to be treated equal to their male counterparts, especially in the area of remuneration.Speaking to Fifa.com in a recent interview, Portia said: “This (WWC) is going to bring change for a lot of young women and open a platform for girls who didn’t know where to go. I think things will slowly change.”Another resilient voice advocating for women in sport, is Brand South Africa’s Board Trustee, Ms. Muditambi Ravele. In her capacity as chairperson of the South African Women & Sports Foundation, Ms. Ravele addressed delegates at the 2018 FIFA Women’s Administrators four-day Course in August last year, where she spoke about the misconception that women are constantly tearing one another down, highlighting how much support women give each other. Known for pushing boundaries, Ms. Ravele encourages many sportswomen to join what is predominantly perceived as male-dominated sports, like boxing.In raising the profile of women in sport, Brand South Africa’s Play Your Part Ambassador and Sports Media Personality, Kass Naidoo utilises her platform Gsport, to celebrate South African women in sport. Gsport aims to improve the media profile of South African women in sport, that will in turn, help with more sponsorship opportunities. Through extensive media coverage, Gsport wishes to on-board Corporate South Africa to stand behind female athletes.Brand South Africa commends these pioneers who not only engage in on-going dialogues that encourage a strengthened Nation Brand, but also lead by example.
A group of South African companies from four provinces will get an opportunity to showcase their products in China when they participate in the second China International Import Expo (CIIE) that will take place in Shanghai from 5-10 November 2019. The group’s participation is organised and funded by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) through its Export Marketing and Investment Assistance (EMIA) Scheme. The objective of the scheme is to develop export markets for South African products and services, and to recruit new foreign direct investment into the country.The CIIE is part of the Chinese government’s initiatives to support trade liberalisation and economic globalisation by actively opening the country’s huge market to the world. The CIIE is an open international cooperation platform provided by China for countries to showcase their products. It is also an international public platform provided by the Chinese government for all the countries in the world to discuss major issues of foreign trade, world economy and global economic governance.According to the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Nomalungelo Gina, China is expecting to import products and services valued at more than US$10 trillion and this will provide a massive opportunity for enterprises across the world to enter the huge Chinese market.“Our continuous participation in the CIIE will contribute significantly in helping us to increase the export of value-added products to China. Since 2009, China has been South Africa’s number one trading partner globally as well as in the Asian region. Total trade between South Africa and China grew from R271 billion in 2013 to R332 billion by the end of 2018. However, 86% of our exports basket to China is concentrated on primary products. There are concerted measures underway to promote value-added goods and services by broadening the export base and increasing South Africa’s market share in China,” says Gina.South Africa was among the twelve countries which were invited as guest countries of honour in the inaugural CIIE which was successfully held in Shanghai in November last year. More than 172 countries, districts and international organisations participated in the event. Products and services from more than 3 600 enterprises and companies were exhibited. SA’s participation in the first CIIE also formed part of the South Africa-China 20-Year Celebration of Diplomatic Relations. South Africa had the biggest representation of all countries from Africa and had the largest footprint at the event.Gina adds that South Africa’s participation will also contribute in strengthening both political and economic bilateral relations between South Africa and China. It is also expected to increase trade between the two countries in general, and South African exports of value-add products in particular.“As a fellow member of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) grouping, participating in exhibitions like these will boost intra-BRICS trade and investment,” says Gina.Enquiries:Sidwell Medupe-Departmental SpokespersonTel: (012) 394 1650Mobile: 079 492 1774E-mail: MSMedupe@thedti.gov.zaIssued by: The Department of Trade and IndustryFollow us on Twitter: @the_dti
Magnatune, a small and eclectic online record label, just releasedits first iPhone app. As far as we know, this is the first time that a record label has released an iPhone app that allows its users to play every song of every artist on its label for free and as often as they want. The only restriction on the app is that every song is followed by a short announcement with the name of the artist and title of the song.Magnatune Magnatune has always done things differently. It was one of the first online music services to allow its customers to choose how much they wanted to pay for an album. From its inception, the service never featured DRM’ed music and always offered its albums in alternative formats like WAV, OGG, FLAC and AAC. On its website, Magnatune offers a commercial-free streaming plan starting at $5/month (users can choose to pay more) and a download membership that starts at $10 a month.Sadly, the first version of the iPhone app doesn’t support these membership options, but according to Magnatune’s announcement, the next version will allow paying members to stream announcement-free music. Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement frederic lardinois Related Posts The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Tags:#mobile#news#web Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces FeaturesThe app itself is pretty straightforward. You can browse Magnatune’s catalog by artist, album and genre. One neat feature of the app is that it remembers where you left off when you turn the app off – or when you get a call – and prompts you to return to that song when you start the app again.ShoppingThe Magnatune store allows users to buy songs right from their phones. Most of Magnatune’s artists are featured in the iTunes store, and the app simply takes users to the iTunes app to buy the song. This, though, also means that potential buyers can’t choose how much they want to pay for an album.Record Labels on the iPhoneAnother label that has also released an iPhone app recently is Ghostly International. This app (iTunes link) features only a selection of Ghostly’s catalog, however.We have talked a lot about how bands and artists have started to look at iPhone apps as replacements of traditional albums. Hopefully, more music labels will now also follow Magnatune’s lead and release their own apps. With built-in purchasing and music discovery, this is a logical extension of the app-as-album trend – but then, the major music labels aren’t exactly known for being logical.
Editor’s note: This is the first in a series on Energizing a Real Green New Deal. You can read the introduction to the series here. Both climate denial and the Green New Deal fail to solve the crucial challenge of our era: How will we create and implement a plan for reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions that is effective, practical, affordable, and rapid. Denial is obviously not a solution and leaves society with the enormous cost of coping with the worst impacts of climate change. On the other hand, the Green New Deal offers solutions that are heavily reliant on federal government control, borrowing, taxation, and spending. And it includes social goals which extend beyond climate change and are destined to become mired in side issues and political gridlock. Neither approach is viable. In this first of three installments, we present a model for an incentive-driven plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in ways that enhance social equity and job creation, while minimizing government regulation.RELATED ARTICLESAmerica Can Afford a Green New Deal — Here’s HowIs the Green New Deal Just a Pipe Dream?New York City Gets Its Own Green New DealLos Angeles Updates Its Plan to Cut Carbon EmissionsGreen New Deal: Just As Dangerous As Climate Denial? Key goals, objectives, and incentives As with all effective strategies, we must first determine our key goals and supporting objectives followed by the specific tasks needed to achieve them. In a market-based economy, the most pain-free and effective way to achieve objectives is to create incentives for actions that support our objectives. To encourage a reduction in fossil fuel use, we need to set specific carbon reduction targets and outline an array of actions needed to reach the objectives. Offering a range of potential actions allows businesses and the public to choose a set of actions they can implement, consistent with their economic and personal situations. Finally, we need to be sure the actions have a positive return on investment. For example, if we want farmers to rebuild soil so it can store significant amounts of carbon, they need to be economically rewarded to make this transition. If we want homeowners to install solar panels, their return on investment needs to be not only positive, but rapid. Incentives can be extrinsic (coming from outside), based on regulations, taxes, subsidies, favorable financing, and tax breaks, or intrinsic (coming from within), based on a positive return on investment, or other less tangible benefits such as improved health and comfort. In most cases, all that is needed to get people and businesses to take action based on intrinsic incentives is to provide education and motivational appeal—a commonly recognized strength of the marketplace. Combining small extrinsic incentives to support intrinsic incentives may create the quickest and most effective road to significant change. State and local governments and utilities have a long history of creating successful financial rebates and educational programs that utilize this strategy to reduce energy use. Defining our goal Unlike the numerous, diverse goals embodied in the Green New Deal, we should be laser focused on the one central goal that is the challenge of our era: To incentivize individuals, companies and governments at all levels to bring greenhouse gas emissions low enough to keep global warming within 2 degrees C or lower. In the U.S., we will do our part to achieve this by reducing fossil fuel and other greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2040 in a manner that promotes equity, good paying jobs, and prosperity and that utilizes the minimum government involvement needed to leverage our free market system to rapidly reach this goal. The following low- or no-cost approaches are minimally intrusive: Market the intrinsic incentives already in existence, such as the lower cost of ownership and improved performance of electric vehicles and zero-energy homes. Shift tax breaks from fossil fuels to clean energy development, including energy efficiency in buildings and transportation, renewable energy sources, energy storage, and a smart electric grid. Apply a modest tax to carbon-based fuels where they are produced, stored, or refined. Create attractive financing packages for making energy efficiency improvements and adding renewables to homes, businesses, and transportation. Build job growth and social equity into all greenhouse gas reduction efforts. Pursue infrastructure improvements that directly address carbon reductions. Enhance existing government R&D programs and develop new ones in conjunction with industries and universities to create or improve energy efficiency and renewable technologies. Market existing intrinsic incentives at little or no cost The good news is that the intrinsic incentives for all players to move to zero greenhouse emission technologies and strategies already exist and are growing rapidly. One reason is that more and more people, small businesses, large corporations, and local governments are internally motivated to take positive steps to help avoid catastrophic climate change. More importantly, many technologies, such as zero-energy homes, electric vehicles, solar panels, and large-scale renewable electric power, give a greater return on investment and offer more benefits than fossil fuel alternatives. Many of the actions advocated for in this series are intrinsically incentivized because they are good investments for homeowners, car owners, businesses, utilities, and governments. The return on investment and the improvements to people’s lives these new technologies offer will drive the market. The only action needed for these technologies to become the new normal is for utilities and the companies who offer them to harness the marketing powers of American free enterprise. Businesses can readily identify needs, research possible solutions, develop products and services, manage supply chains and distribution networks, set competitive prices, and advertise with gusto. The government’s role is to set overarching goals, provide adequate direction, level the playing field, offer strategic incentives, and build public infrastructure. Local, state, and federal governments can catalyze the formation of marketing alliances to mount effective campaigns that promote the intrinsic benefits of clean energy technologies to the general public. These alliances would include energy utilities, manufacturers of energy-related products, and committed non-profits. Utilities and manufacturers will benefit from business growth. The general public will benefit from positive financial returns. All this with no, or very low, cost to taxpayers. Redirecting existing tax breaks Without creating an additional tax burden, we can realign existing tax breaks and subsidies at the state and federal level to promote measures that will help us reach our net zero greenhouse gas emission goal. According to one estimate, over $20 billion a year in state and federal tax credits are going to the fossil fuel industry. Redirecting these tax credits could make this whopping $20 billion available to incentivize the industries and initiatives focused on greenhouse gas emission reduction while removing support for fossil fuels. The Clean Energy for America Bill, introduced in the Senate, would replace 44 different existing energy tax incentives with incentives for clean electricity, clean transportation fuel, and energy conservation. Passing this bill would be an important step in the right direction. Tax credits should be designed to have the maximum effect on the market. Priority should be given to encouraging those projects where money invested in greenhouse gas reduction will bring a positive return on investment, such as zero-energy homes and buildings, a smart grid, zero-carbon electricity production, and electric vehicles. Because of their positive return on investment, incentives for these new technologies can be modest, effective, and quickly phased out when goals are met or market momentum grows. Tax credits should not be targeted at more expensive, less mature technologies such as electric or hydrogen planes, trains and ships, until R&D has reduced the price enough so that incentives will promote rapid market acceptance. Low- and middle-income households should be offered more generous tax credits to purchase zero energy vehicles, homes, and buildings so they can reap the energy/cost savings and health benefits of these superior technologies. A national advisory board of experts should be created to adjust these tax credits based on market conditions and the evolution of prices in order to leverage the maximum return from each and reduce them as soon as sufficient market momentum is established. A modest carbon tax at the source The market can only make good decisions when it has good information. Unfortunately, the price of fossil fuels ignores many hidden costs, such as increased sickness, toxic spills, mining waste, air pollution and a rapidly changing global climate. Currently, carbon-dependent industries get a free ride with cheap access to public lands, a huge and unregulated dumping area for their waste, i.e., the air we breathe, and even direct government subsidies. These have a real cost to citizens and society. To provide the free market with the information it needs on these costs so it can make rational decisions about fossil fuel use versus clean carbon alternatives, a modest, predictable and stabilizing carbon tax should be levied at the source of fossil fuel production or distribution. While it is not a complete solution in itself, a small carbon tax will begin to price in the hidden costs of fossil fuels, and will be the most cost-effective, least intrusive, and most equitable way to reduce carbon emissions to zero. It is a market-based approach that is supported by more than 3,500 economists, including 27 Nobel laureates. An optimal carbon tax will add a very small but steadily increasing fee to fossil fuels at their source, which will create a predictable, long-term incentive to move toward clean energy. As it gradually increases, it will change the decisions made by citizens, business people, and government officials about cars, trains, aircraft, buildings, generating plants, manufacturing plants, agricultural operations, and military installations. Business and industry will respond to new opportunities, resulting in widespread carbon emission reductions. Electric and hybrid vehicles will become the new normal; all electric zero-energy and positive-energy buildings and homes will dominate the housing stock; clean-fueled trains, ships and airplanes will move goods and people; government and military facilities and operations will be more secure and resilient; and a non-fossil fuel-based, smart electric grid with battery storage will connect it all. This tax can be easily be collected on oil, gas, and coal as they come through pipelines or at refineries or storage facilities. It can be adjusted by a formula to stabilize fuel prices during both price declines and price spikes. Over 30 years, it will very gradually increase the base cost of all fossil fuels. The scheduling of this gradual tax increase along with stabilization of prices gives businesses and families the predictability they need to plan for the future. Revenues from the tax, combined with internal and external incentives, can be used to jump start us on the path to zero in ways that create equity for low income people faced with higher energy costs. Loans and financing Everyone agrees that energy-saving improvements pay off over time. The problem has been that initial costs for these improvements act as disincentives. To overcome this first-cost obstacle, we must create clean energy financing vehicles that make the monthly payments for loans on building, transportation, and infrastructure improvements lower than the monthly energy savings. When the monthly earnings from energy savings exceed the monthly loan costs, it is called profit. When structured properly, loans for energy saving and renewable investments, provide a profit from the very first month, not only benefiting the borrower, but also benefiting suppliers, local economies, and the global climate. Tax credits and/or income from the carbon tax can be used to encourage lenders of all types to offer or underwrite low cost revolving loans to low income people and small businesses for electric vehicles, for zero-energy and positive-energy homes, for solar panels, and for energy efficiency upgrades to existing homes. Similar low cost loans can be offered to small farmers and small forest landowners to provide funds to lower their carbon footprint and to sequester more carbon. Whether they are homeowners, landlords, farmers or small businesses, these revolving loans would be structured to make the earnings from lower energy costs exceed the financing cost so everybody wins. Equity The first priority for tax credits and some of the revenue from the carbon tax will be to create higher tax credits and rebates for low income people to make their homes energy efficient, install solar collectors, buy zero energy homes, upgrade to hybrid and electric vehicles, including used EVs. Landlords of low- and middle-income apartment dwellers should be incentivized to upgrade the energy efficiency of their units and add solar panels, provided they reduce their tenants’ energy bills or rents. Landlords should also be incentivized to provide EV chargers for tenants. Helping lower income families acquire zero-energy homes and electric vehicles will allow them to reap the benefits of low or no utility costs for their homes and reduced fuel costs for their vehicles, and can be a major factor in helping minimize the disproportionate impact of the carbon tax on them. A small portion of the revenue can be returned directly to very low-income individuals by means of a monthly check or a refundable tax credit, as the carbon tax gradually increases. But unlike the current carbon tax bill before Congress, which only uses the tax revenue to give all citizens—rich and poor alike—a check each month, a portion of the carbon tax revenue, along with other incentives, should be used to help lower income individuals reduce their fossil fuel consumption to zero. This approach would save them more money than if they were to continue using fossil fuels while receiving a check to cover some of the higher costs. Infrastructure and jobs The market incentive provided by the carbon tax can be supercharged by devoting a significant portion of the funds to build out a carbon-free infrastructure. For example, revenue could be used to construct a network of highway rest areas with charging stations for electric cars and trucks, to incentivize utilities to convert to non-carbon-emitting energy sources connected by a smart grid, to finance the decommissioning and recycling of fossil fuel facilities that can no longer be used, to transform coal mines and power plants into wind and solar farms, and to retrain the workforce for new clean energy jobs. Fossil fuel companies can be rewarded for restructuring their energy businesses to become clean energy utilities, as Royal Dutch Shell is planning on, so they can enjoy continued success in business and save jobs. And where still needed, federal grants can be made to schools, hospitals, airports, rail lines, and local governments to incentivize building out their share of this carbon-free infrastructure. Using some of the revenue to build out a carbon-free infrastructure will create thousands of good-paying jobs that can’t be replaced by automation or exported. Research and development Some of the revenue form the carbon tax should be used to increase the budget for R&D. To make that funding go even further, national research laboratories can be refocused to conduct more basic research and development to get us quickly and as cheaply as possible to zero greenhouse gas emissions. This can be done in conjunction with university researchers and industry innovators to make it even more cost effective. Areas for R&D should include increasing solar PV and battery efficiency, developing electric and/or hydrogen planes, trains and ships, creating safer, more efficient, and less costly nuclear power, and a developing a highly-effective, renewable-powered smart grid with battery storage. Joseph Emerson is a co-founder of the Zero Energy Project where this article originally appeared. Emerson writes that this series of blogs on the Green New Deal is inspired by Chris Martinsen’s Deconstructing the Green New Deal.
Related Posts Tags:#Messaging Services#SMS Does the world need another messaging service? The team behind Chorus.im thinks so, and they’re banking on the browser as the future of anywhere, anytime costless communication. Chorus, an HTML5-based chat service that launches today, works on any device with a browser, and claims to let you reach anyone you could call or email, whether or not they’ve ever even heard of Chorus.Why HTML5? “If all of us are trying to overthrow SMS, it should use the network that’s the most ubiquitous,” says Steve Tran, the company’s founder and CEO. An HTML5 framework lets the app work in any browser, mobile or otherwise. “We think messaging is likely to be a core application in the HTML5 frontier,” he adds, noting that it offered the least restrictions.Founded roughly nine months ago and based in Mountain View, Calif., Chorus is basically a team of four, three of whom previously worked together on a voice application platform called BeVocal acquired by Nuance Communications back in 2007. The team has received angel funding, but runs as a self-described lean operation with no immediate plan for venture capital investment. Biting The Dead Hand Of Carrier SMSChorus claims its app is the only HTML5, browser-centric messenger out there. But it will have to demonstrate some immediate advantages, because it’s joining an all-out firefight in the instant-messaging market.A growing crowd of services — such as, for instance, WhatsApp and WeChat — aim to kill off carrier-bound SMS and its unreasonably high fees and lack of social media integration. Built-in smartphone features such as Apple’s iMessage have also been chipping away at the carriers’ grip on text communication.And it’s not just in the U.S. Just last week, The Wall Street Journal reported on the rise of Line, a messaging service popular in Japan that has joined the anti-SMS ranks, and also pointed out that “the rise of texting apps has taken away $23 billion in revenue from carriers as of the end of 2012….” Beyond Line, Samsung has ChatOn, Deutsche Telekom invested in Pinger, and Yahoo Japan purchased a 50% stake in the Japanese subsidiary of South Korea’s KakaoTalk.The point is that the war is raging, and to catch on and stand out in the field of messaging services is becoming almost as hard establishing a new social network. Almost FrictionlessChorus calls itself “frictionless” because users can jump in and out of conversations while moving, say, from a laptop to a phone to a tablet — and with no registration required. Though a profile goes a long way toward making things easier. With Chorus, it’s required if you want to initiate conversations. In other words, if somebody invites you to chat, you can accept and communicate, but you can’t start conversations yourself unless you register with a username, email and password. (Alternatively, you can sync an account from Google+ or Facebook.) The service has also launched iOS and Android apps for the sole purpose of enabling mobile push notifications, something smartphone browsers don’t allow at the moment. But random signups aren’t how the Chorus team expects users to dive in. If you know someone’s email address or phone number, you can pull them directly into a chat — again, no registration required on their part. And from there the new user can decide whether registering seems worth the trouble. Which means that Chorus effectively makes no distinction between its registered users and everyone else when it comes to chatting in the moment, a feature its team thinks will be key to its success.“A lot of the over-the-top messaging apps, they’re effectively all walled gardens. They’re creating their own network,” Tran says. With Chorus, there’s no wall, and the garden is more like an open field. But naturally, that has its pros and cons.Scaling The Walled GardensServices like Facebook Messenger or the popular mobile app WhatsApp are indeed walled gardens to varying degrees. But as Tran suggests, a service like Chorus will inevitably face the problem of pulling users away from ecosystems and buddy lists they’re familiar with. At the end of the day, messaging comes down to ease, and if there’s anything heavy mobile users are invested in, it’s in the tool they use to text. Through straightforward integration, Chorus also lets you bring in contacts from your phone, Facebook and Google all into one address book. That’s not new to the world of messaging services, though Chorus claims it lets you do so easily and in a way that saves you the hassle of building up yet another useless profile and trying to organize a contact list.“In our worldview, users already have a friends list — it’s called their address book. They shouldn’t have to create a new one and should have the flexibility to immediately send messages to whomever they want,” the company states in its official press release. Which is, effectively, the main draw of Chorus: its ability to let you reach anyone without having to worry about whether they’re on a phone or a laptop, or iMessage or Google Talk or Facebook. In a space where there’s so many different ways to communicate that it makes your head spin, to have a stripped down service that does what you want it to do is an ideal solution. If it catches on. Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … nick statt The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology
Naomi Osaka defeated Petra Kvitova 7-6 (7-2) 5-7 6-4 to win her first Australian Open title at the Rod Laver Arena on Saturday.It was a second successive Grand Slam title for the Japanese, after her U.S. Open triumph in September, and she became the first Asian player to claim the world number one ranking in the process.Kvitova saved four matchpoints, showing the same resilience she needed to return to the top level of tennis after a knife attack and lengthy surgery in 2016, but her fightback fell just short.Tears of joy @Naomi_Osaka_ #AusOpen pic.twitter.com/ckfLkGG6kf#AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 26, 2019Osaka shed tears after losing the second set from a 5-3 lead but returned to court after a washroom break calmer and more composed.She broke Kvitova in the third game of the final set and converted her fifth matchpoint to end a superb final in two hours and 27 minutes.The 21-year-old Osaka became the youngest women’s world number one since Dane Caroline Wozniacki, who was 20 when she topped the rankings in 2010.The fourth seed, one of the cleanest strikers of the ball in women’s tennis, also became the first player since Jennifer Capriati in 2001 to win the next Grand Slam after her maiden major title.What a moment. @Naomi_Osaka_ wins her second Grand Slam in a row #AusOpen pic.twitter.com/9TTskXIH9E#AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 26, 2019Osaka took the first set on a tiebreak after both players had exhibited their entire array of shots in a high-quality opening to the match.advertisementKvitova’s serve, which looked impregnable during the early games of the opening set, suffered a dip as Osaka took up unconventional receiving positions, forcing the Czech to make adjustments.Naomi Osaka vs Petra Kvitova, Australian Open 2019: HighlightsOsaka had won 59 straight matches after taking the first set before Saturday’s final and showed why as her serves grew bigger and the winners flowed from her racket in the second.Kvitova broke early in the second set to go up 2-0 but a doublefault from the Czech gave Osaka a second breakpoint opportunity, which she converted to get back on serve.Head up @Petra_Kvitova.You’re an inspiration to many #AusOpen pic.twitter.com/HP2YTcM1YJ#AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 26, 2019The Czech’s confidence appeared shaken and she was broken to love before another Osaka hold gave the Japanese her fourth straight game in the second set.But the 28-year-old Czech, who had lost just seven out of 33 career finals before Saturday, fought back with booming serves to save three matchpoints and hold for 4-5, before breaking Osaka to draw level.A teary-eyed Osaka could not stop Kvitova’s fightback as the Czech won four straight games to win the set and level the match at 1-1, after the Japanese served her fourth double fault.A break in the third game of the decider, however, proved enough for Osaka, who fell to her knees as Kvitova’s forehand went wide to hand her the title.(With inputs from Agencies)
Videos Pogba reunited with his ‘love’, but Man Utd return remains some way off Chris Burton 14:52 10/6/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) Getty Images Videos Paul Pogba Manchester United Premier League The France international is working with a football again, but not as the Red Devils would have hoped as he continues to nurse a hamstring problem Paul Pogba is working with a football again, but he remains some way off being reunited with his “love” in competitive action for Manchester United.The French midfielder has been out of action since picking up a hamstring injury in a Champions League clash with Basel on September 12.That ailment has kept him out of five matches for the Red Devils and the latest round of international fixtures. Editors’ Picks Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. Jose Mourinho has admitted that the 24-year-old is set to be sidelined “long-term”, with Pogba reduced to dancing with a ball at present, rather than kicking one.Moves with my love pic.twitter.com/puP3OwceZs— Paul Pogba (@paulpogba) October 5, 2017Pogba has previously posted videos on social media to suggest that he is stepping up his rehabilitation.He is back in the gym, with a “Bruce Lee style” approach being taken to his fitness regime.Bruce Lee style !! Wouaaaa tchaaaaaa #recovery pic.twitter.com/mMXX9dARxp— Paul Pogba (@paulpogba) October 3, 2017United will be hoping to have him back in contention before too long, as the £89 million man is a key part of their plans.Pogba also started the season in fine style, with his early efforts – which included two goals – earning him the club’s Player of the Month award for August.Mourinho’s side have fared admirably in his absence, winning all of the games he has missed to date and with Marouane Fellaini impressing in a cover role.They are, however, a better side with Pogba in it, with the arrival of Nemanja Matic to fill a holding role over the summer having freed a creative influence to make more of an impact in the final third of the field.
The Sydney Mets have beaten Sun Coast in a thrilling game in the Men’s 20’s final at the 2009 X-Blades National Touch League in Port Macquarie.The game was intense up until the final siren, with both teams desperately trying to take hold of the game, with the Mets eventually winning 8-7.Tim Good opened the scoring in the 5th minute, putting the Mets in front 1-0.The Mets nearly made it 2-0 two minutes later, but their touchdown attempt was disallowed. This came back to haunt them as Sean Baldwin from Sunshine Coast scored to level the game.Sun Coast was in again just two minutes later, when Kelvin Jones scored from a great ball from Jason Schmidt, to put them into the lead for the first time in the game.Tim Good scored his second try in the 11th minute, but soon after got sent from the field as a forced interchange, and Baldwin scored his double in the corresponding set of six, giving Sun Coast the lead again. Macquire Tatola and captain Matthew Yiangou both scored for the Mets in the last five minutes of the first half, sending the Sydney team to the half time break with a 4-3 lead, despite several disallowed touchdowns against the Mets in the first half.Dave Shaw extended the Mets lead soon after the break, giving them a two touchdown advantage.Back to back tries to Sun Coast put the teams on level terms, with tries to Luke Mendham and Zach Stasser, but it wasn’t long before Shaw scored his second touchdown of the game, capitalising on some slow defence on the line. The Mets’ Luke Eisenhuth broke through the line of defence in the 7th minute, fooling Sun Coast defenders on his way, giving the Mets some breathing space.This didn’t last long, however, with Nathan Sullivan the recipient of a great cut out pass to close the gap for Sun Coast six minutes out from full time. The Mets had many opportunities to run away with the game in the second half, but numerous penalties for forward passes and over the mark calls gave Sun Coast plenty of good field position.Another penalty in good field position gave Sun Coast a great opportunity to level the scores, and that’s what they did when captain Tyson Brough led by example, scoring in the 18th minute to level the scores.The scores weren’t level for long, as Ben Antonio dived through the Sun Coast defensive line in the next set of six, to put the Mets back in front with one minute to go.Sun Coast were disallowed a try due to a forward pass in the dying seconds, handing the Mets an 8-7 win.
If you attended the recent 2014 Trans Tasman Series in Mudgee, we would love to hear your thoughts. We are committed to providing you with the most enjoyable experience at Touch Football events and participating in our surveys with greatly assist in this regard.There will are two surveys, one developed by Destination NSW and one developed by TFA. The different surveys will concentrate on different aspects of the event. If you would like to pass on some feedback of your experience you can do so through the Destination NSW survey which can be accessed from – http://ensw.customerdirect.com.au/ensw/start.aspx?meetingid=3877 The TFA survey goes further into some event logistics and is available from – https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/2014-OTTTS Related LinksTrans Tasman Survey