Defending champ Serena Williams withdraws from Australian Open

Posted On Jan 19 2020 by

first_imgMOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Williams was pregnant with her first child when she won the 2017 tournament at Melbourne Park, the 23rd Grand Slam singles title of her career.She gave birth to her daughter, Alexis, in September.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkWilliams played in an exhibition tournament last week in Abu Dhabi and indicated after her loss to French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko that she might not make it to Melbourne.“After competing in Abu Dhabi I realized that although I am super close, I’m not where I personally want to be,” Williams said in a statement released Friday by Australian Open organizers. OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Road to redemption In 2017, Williams beat older sister Venus in the finals before revealing she played the tournament despite being more than two months pregnant.Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley said Williams waited as long as she could before letting them know she would not be able to compete.“I’ve been in constant contact with Serena and her team and know this is why she has pushed it and pushed it until the 11th hour to make her final decision,” Tiley said.              /kgaSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Scottie Thompson also worthy of Finals MVP, thinks Cone “My coach and team always said ‘only go to tournaments when you are prepared to go all the way’. I can compete – but I don’t want to just compete, I want to do far better than that and to do so, I will need a little more time.”“With that being said, and even though I am disappointed about it, I’ve decided not to compete in the Australian Open this year,” she added.Williams, 36, is a seven-time champion of the Australian Open and needs one more Grand Slam title to tie the all-time record held by Margaret Court.Her withdrawal comes less than 24 hours after fellow former world No.1 Andy Murray withdrew from the men’s event with a chronic hip injury.Several other big names, including top-ranked Rafael Nadal, six-time champion Novak Djokovic, and 2014 winner Stan Wawrinka, also are dealing with injuries.ADVERTISEMENT View comments MELBOURNE, Australia — Defending champion Serena Williams has withdrawn from the Australian Open, saying she is not ready to return to tournament tennis.ADVERTISEMENT In this January 28, 2017 photo, Serena Williams holds up a finger and her trophy after defeating her sister, Venus, in the women’s singles final at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia. (AP FILE PHOTO)center_img Brian Heruela arrival bolsters Phoenix backcourt, defense Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Meralco ‘never the same’ after Almazan injury in PBA Finals Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ LATEST STORIES Redemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie Thompsonlast_img read more

Ebola Hinders Food Production in Liberia

Posted On Jan 15 2020 by

first_imgThe deadly Ebola Disease virus (EVD), which has killed nearly 2,288 people in three West African countries in only six months, is affecting Liberia’s agricultural sector by hindering food production in the affected counties.Due to strict measures taken by the government of Liberia to quarantine counties affected as a way to contain the virus, Liberian farmers find it difficult to produce and sell to the local markets. In Lofa, one of the counties badly hit, it is reported that farmers in some villages have abandoned their farms altogether to flee to other parts of Liberia in attempts to avoid contracting the virus.Ebola has also caused an increase in the price of some food commodities.Lofa, known as Liberia’s leading breadbasket, was the first county to record Ebola cases. Now, rice farmers face challenges in maintaining rice fields and don’t have enough manpower to transplant, care for and harvest rice.  Every  year, Lofa farmers produce  approximately 560 tons of Liberia’s main staple rice.Mohammed Kamara, a farmer in Lofa, told the Daily Observer in an exclusive interview that the EVD crisis is posing serious economic hardship for the citizens as farmers cannot travel as before to sell their produce.He said the virus had  destroyed the lives of many farmers and caused  displacement in three districts, reducing work force in the agriculture sector of Lofa.Farmer Kamara stressed the need for government and its partners to think about the challenges of EVD in his county.“We want the government to understand that farmers will need more help to enable them to restart life after the crisis,” he mentioned.Alexander Moah, a vegetable farmer in a Monrovia suburb,  said that the Ebola had  affected market for vegetable farmers. He said the big buyers of vegetable crops in Liberia are the expatriates who are leaving the country due to the outbreak of the virus.Meanwhile, Liberia’s Vice president, Joseph Nyumah Boakai, told the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) recently that there is an urgent need to address the challenges of food production in Liberia. Mr. Boakai said that government will need to increase support for farmers in terms of increasing processing facilities for marketing and providing inputs for farmers.Limited processing services represents a major constraint   for Liberia’s local food industry.Liberia, an already food-insecure nation of 4 million people, continues to recover from a 14-year civil war that destroyed the agriculture sector. The government of Liberia and its international partners are making some efforts to scale up food production, mainly rice and cassava, but the Ebola outbreak will stall the process and perhaps leave Liberians more hungry than before.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Movement reported in supermarket talks

Posted On Jan 11 2020 by

first_imgNegotiations between Southern California grocery chains and unions representing thousands of clerks are making “some progress,” according to a federal mediator leading the talks, indicating that a strike is not imminent. Vons, Ralphs and Albertsons have been negotiating with the United Food and Commercial Workers union since last month, when a three-year contract was extended until April 9. Both sides agreed to automatically renew the contract daily after that. There has been “some progress on difficult and complex issues,” mediators said Friday in a four-sentence press release. The main issue is a two-tier system that gives veteran workers richer benefits than new hires. The union, which represents almost 70,000 workers in Southern California, wants to abolish the system while the chains are pleased with it. An information blackout has prevented those involved from sharing details of the talks. Mike Shimpock, a spokesman for the unions, said the chains “understood something had to be done or this whole thing was headed toward a replay of 2003 and 2004,” when workers went on a 139-day strike, one of the longest in U.S. history. Political support for the unions has been mounting since Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., wrote a letter dated April 13 to Steven Burd, chairman and CEO of Safeway, which owns Vons. “The outcome of these contract negotiations is of great concern to me,” wrote Boxer, who pulled out her son’s 1986 pay stubs from a local supermarket. Adjusted for inflation, entry-level workers today are earning $4.86 less per hour than her son did. Wages and health care are issues that “must be addressed,” Boxer wrote. — Julia Scott, (818) 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Sunderland confirm departure of AWOL record signing Didier Ndong

Posted On Dec 26 2019 by

first_img 2 Sunderland have confirmed Didier Ndong is no longer a Black Cats player after the AWOL midfielder and the club reached terms over an amicable split.Ndong failed to report back for pre-season training this summer following a second successive relegation, and attempts to sell their club record £13.6million signing before the transfer shut fell flat. 2 Sunderland served the 24-year-old Gabon international with notice of their intention to terminate his contract last month.But now an agreement has been reached under which they will be due compensation when he finds a new employer.A statement said: “Sunderland AFC has reached an agreement with Didier Ndong for his departure on amicable terms. As of 8 October 2018, he is no longer an employee of the club.“Sunderland AFC has an agreement with the player for a payment by way of compensation upon his signing for a new club.”Ndong arrived at the Stadium of Light from Lorient in August 2016, as the Black Cats invested heavily in his potential.But, after a promising start, he struggled to make an impression and, after the club slipped into the Championship at the end of his first campaign, became surplus to requirements under then manager Chris Coleman. Didier Ndong has finally left Sunderland Ndong spent five months on the sidelines on loan at Watford He was sent out on loan to Watford during the second half of last season but did not make a single senior appearance for the Premier League side.The midfielder was due to report back with the rest of the squad to begin preparations for life in League One, although he and central defender Papy Djilobodji failed to re-appear as their representatives tried, ultimately unsuccessfully, to move them on.Djilobodji was told his contract would be terminated after he eventually returned last month and underwent fitness tests, and Ndong was served with a similar notice days later after belatedly returning.last_img read more

Candidate questioned

Posted On Dec 25 2019 by

first_imgSANTA CLARITA – Some audience members cross-examined one candidate on his background in an otherwise uneventful forum Wednesday where five hopefuls vied for votes for two seats on the College of the Canyons board. A handful of faculty, staff and students lined up to question Jonathan Kraut, a 50-year-old Santa Clarita man running for a seat held by two-time incumbent Ernie Tichenor, running for re-election. Some took shots. Others just wanted more information. The skeptical group asked for more clarity in Kraut’s answers about his background, resume and experience. They said that he was not forthcoming with his past and claimed successes. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week Among those challenging Kraut was Sydney Tichenor, daughter of incumbent Ernie Tichenor, who stood before the crowd of about 100 and introduced herself by just her first name. She said that Kraut claimed to be a UCLA professor in a previous election but actually was an analyst there. She said she called UCLA and checked his employment. “How can we trust you?” Sydney Tichenor asked. Kraut said it was a local newspaper misprint that listed him as a professor and that a correction had been published. He said his role at the school was as an analyst. Steps away from the debate, the College of the Canyons student acknowledged she was Ernie Tichenor’s daughter. She said that she did research on all the candidates and that her father helped her contact UCLA to verify Kraut’s employment. Others, such as Patty Robinson, said they were simply puzzled by Kraut’s claim to have worked at 15 learning institutions. The College of the Canyons professor said that it seemed like a lot of places to have been employed. She asked Kraut to list the campuses and his positions. Kraut said he was a consultant at the facilities and listed some, from UCLA to a program in Phoenix. He said that the nature of consulting is to work for a few years and move on because it’s not full-time employment. After the forum, Robinson said she didn’t think that Kraut fully answered her question. “Most of us do some adjunct teaching, but to work at 15 campuses – that’s a lot of campuses,” Robinson said. Kraut’s Web site,, doesn’t list many specifics about the institutions, citing a vocational school in Albuquerque and the largest security program in Los Angeles without naming them. The emphasis on Kraut during the question-and-answer period did not sit well with some students sitting on the grass near the Honor Grove, where the forum was held. Brandon Hoffer, 18, said it seemed that people were ganging up on Kraut. But the Valencia student said he found Kraut’s background was questionable because it was so extensive. “I think he just wants a political office,” Hoffer said, noting that Kraut previously made an unsuccessful run for the state Senate. In this race, candidates choose the board members they want to challenge. Aside from the Kraut and Tichenor race, incumbent Joan MacGregor has two hopefuls eyeing her seat – Teresa Todd and Ronald Vitale. Trustees on the five-member board hold four-year positions. Joel Youkhanna, 18, listened as candidates discussed their positions on topics such as policy review, curriculum and budget oversight. The Valencia resident liked what he heard from all but had some reservations. “All the candidates do have a clear point of view, but if I had to choose, I’d go with those with experience, because they know what they’re doing,” he said. Sue Doyle, (661) 257-5254 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Jaaja Walu parts ways with Kaizer Chiefs

Posted On Dec 22 2019 by

first_img Tags: godfrey walusimbigor mahiaKaizer ChiefsPSLUganda Cranes Walusimbi joined the Amakhosi in July 2018(file photo)SOWETO – Uganda Cranes left-back Godfrey ‘Jaaja Walu’ has left PSL giants Kaizer Chiefs.This comes barely six months since he joined the Soweto side from Kenya’s Gor Mahia.Reports from South Africa indicate that Walusimbi asked the Amakhosi hierarchy to let him go back home (Uganda) and they granted his wish.The news of his departure was confirmed by the club on their official twitter handle.“Kaizer Chiefs have parted ways with left-back Godfrey Walusimbi. The player has opted to go back home to Uganda. We would like to thank Godfrey for his contribution to Kaizer Chiefs and wish him all the best, read the tweet.Walusimbi has featured in 7 PSL games for the Amakhosi, contributing one assist and scoring no goals.He has in the past played for SC Villa in Uganda, CS Don Bosco of DR Congo and Gor Mahia in Kenya.Comments last_img read more

Warriors mailbag: What’s wrong with the Warriors?

Posted On Dec 20 2019 by

first_img* * *Subscribe to the Mercury News and East Bay Times for $40 a year and receive a free Warriors championship coffee table book* * *PORTLAND, Ore. —  This used to mark the time that Warriors fans became enthralled with how easy it was for Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant steamrolled toward double-digit wins. This also used to mark the time that Warriors fan shrugged their shoulders over any stretch of bad plays because they were simply bored with regular-season …last_img read more

Punjab to hire psychiatrists to deal with drug menace

Posted On Dec 3 2019 by

first_imgPunjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Monday issued directions to hire retired government psychiatrists besides employing and empanelling private ones to handle the increased inflow of patients at drug de-addiction centres in the State.At the weekly review meeting of the Cabinet subcommittee set up to monitor the anti-drug measures taken by various agencies, the Chief Minister also directed the department officials concerned to formulate strategies for ensuring security of drug addicts and their families coming to the de-addiction and rehabilitation centres.An official statement said the Chief Minister asked the district authorities to crack down on centres selling Buprenophine-Naloxone in large quantities in violation of prescribed protocols.“To reach out more aggressively to the people with information on various anti-drug government programmes, Capt. Amarinder asked the health department to involve sub-divisional magistrates, block development and panchayat officers and village panchayats in dissemination programmes. The list of the nearest Outpatient Opioid Assisted Treatment centres should be displayed on billboards and hoardings at strategic places, including bus stands, government hospitals and civil dispensaries in all cities, towns and villages,” the statement said.Inspection orderedThe Chief Minister also directed immediate inspection of existing private de-addiction centres to ensure that they are equipped with proper infrastructure in terms of manpower and other facilities. “If the district authorities feel that a de-addiction centre does not meet the minimum standards or is not providing all the required services in the prescribed manner, the same may be recommended for closure,” added the statement.last_img read more

Bastian Schweinsteiger Announces Retirement, Could Join Germany Set-up

Posted On Nov 26 2019 by

first_img Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. Dortmund: Bastian Schweinsteiger is welcome to join the Germany coaching staff, national team coach Joachim Loew said Tuesday just hours before the veteran midfielder announced his retirement on Tuesday.”The time has now come and I will be finishing my active career at the end of the season,” Schweinsteiger wrote on Twitter. “Saying goodbye as an active player makes me feel a little nostalgic, but I am also looking forward to the exciting challenges that await me.”The 35-year-old former Bayern Munich and Manchester United midfielder has effectively hung up his boots as his current team Chicago Fire team failed to make the MLS play-offs.The Time has now come: I would like to thank both, you and my teams @FCBayern, @ManUtd, @ChicagoFire and @DFB_Team and of course @AnaIvanovic and my family for their support!Thank you!— Basti Schweinsteiger (@BSchweinsteiger) October 8, 2019 Shortly before Tuesday’s announcement on social media by Schweinsteiger, Loew said the midfielder could join his staff.”We will always have a place for him,” said Loew in Dortmund where Germany are preparing to host Argentina in a friendly on Wednesday.”I don’t know what his plans are,” he said, adding “any player who has ever played in the national team, and has the goal of being a coach, is always welcome here to get a taste of what it’s like.”Schweinsteiger’s former national team-mate Miroslav Klose was briefly part of Loew’s coaching staff, as a forwards coach, until last year’s World Cup.Schweinsteiger retired from the national team in 2016 after making 121 appearances.Loew heaped praise on Schweinsteiger, who helped inspire a 1-0 extra-time victory over Argentina in the 2014 World Cup final despite a cut under his right eye.”Everyone has a picture of him in their heads: blood-stained in the Maracana (in the 2014 World Cup final), he got up again and again and gave everything.”He is one of the greatest players in German history,” enthused Loew.”You could always feel his will to win. He was a great player and a great personality.” Bastian Schweinsteigerfootballgermany First Published: October 8, 2019, 11:23 PM ISTlast_img read more

Cyprus Drew with Kazakhstan 1-1, Hurting Both teams’ Qualifying Hopes

Posted On Nov 18 2019 by

first_imgThe Netherlands scored four goals in just 32 minutes for a memorable 4-2 comeback win over Germany in European Championship qualifying Friday.As the old rivals faced off for the fourth time in 11 months, a new face made the difference. On his debut, 20-year-old striker Donyell Malen hit the third goal for the Netherlands off a pass from Georginio Wijnaldum.Elsewhere, World Cup finalist Croatia recovered from a recent slump to hammer Slovakia 4-0 and close in on a qualification spot.Belgium swept aside San Marino 4-0 as it marches toward qualification, and Slovenia beat Group G leader Poland 2-0 to spoil the Poles’ spotless winning record in qualifying.COMEBACK KINGSGermany was looking for back-to-back wins over the Netherlands and was on track when Serge Gnabry scored off a rebound in the ninth minute.The Germans did well to track fluid Dutch attacking moves and were a persistent counterattacking threat. But that all changed with two mistakes from defender Jonathan Tah.Netherlands’ Donyell Malen, center, celebrates after scoring his side’s third goal during the Euro 2020 group C qualifying soccer match between Germany and the Netherlands at the Volksparkstadion in Hamburg, Germany, Friday, Sept. 6, 2019. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)First he missed a chance to intercept a cross, allowing Frenkie de Jong to equalize in the 59th. Tah gave the Netherlands the lead seven minutes later, sending a Memphis Depay cross into his own net.Toni Kroos made it 2-2 for Germany from a penalty which was awarded despite apparent offside in the buildup, but Wijnaldum responded by setting up Malen to restore the Dutch lead. Wijnaldum scored in stoppage time, underlining the Netherlands’ second-half dominance.The Netherlands’ win staves off the threat of having to qualify via the playoffs.While still third on six points, six off group leader Northern Ireland and three off Germany, the Dutch have played one fewer game than both thanks to their run at the Nations League final. Northern Ireland must still play Germany and the Netherlands twice each.Belarus beat Estonia 2-1.CROATIA BACK ON FORMCroatia is finally starting to look like the team which reached the World Cup final.After seven games without a clean sheet, three of them defeats, Croatia shut out Slovakia in style to kick-start its qualifying bid.Nikola Vlasic opened the scoring in the 45th with a low shot from outside the box. When Ivan Perisic scored with a deflected shot straight after halftime, Croatia never looked back, eventually scoring four goals for the first time since 2017.Croatia moved level with Hungary, which didn’t play on Friday, at the top of Group E.A surprise semifinalist at the 2016 European Championship, third-placed Wales risked missing out this time despite beating Azerbaijan 2-1. The Welsh were on track to drop points before Gareth Bale’s 84th-minute header gave them the win.BELGIUM CRUISESIt’s hard for a 4-0 win to seem unimpressive, but Belgium managed it against San Marino.The game against one of Europe’s smallest nations was scoreless until the 43rd minute, when Michy Batshuayi gave Belgium the lead from the penalty spot. Goals from Nacer Chadli and Dries Mertens secured three points in the second half before Batshuayi scored again in added time.Russia scored 14 without reply in its previous three games, but lacked bite in a 2-1 win over Scotland. Brazilian-born goalkeeper Guilherme handed Scotland the lead when he palmed an 11th-minute cross into the path of John McGinn for an easy finish.Russia had a slice of luck in the 40th when a pass deflected off Andy Robertson and landed in front of striker Artyom Dzyuba, who scored his sixth goal in his last four qualifying games — though four of those goals were against San Marino. Russia’s second came when Stephen O’Donnell knocked a cross into his own net.Earlier, Kazakhstan drew with Cyprus 1-1, hurting both teams’ already faint qualifying hopes. Belgium leads Russia by a point in Group I, and the Russians have a five-point cushion over Kazakhstan in third.POLAND STUMBLESPoland was looking to match Spain and Italy with five wins from five, but Slovenia had other plans.Andraz Sporar had a hand in both of Slovenia’s goals, teeing up Aljaz Struna for the first at a free kick, and then scoring himself on a counterattack in the 65th.Austria took advantage to close the gap to Poland to three points with a 6-0 demolition of last-placed Latvia. Austria’s win was never in doubt after Marko Arnautovic opened the scoring in the seventh minute. He added a penalty, taking him to six goals in his last four internationals.Slovenia was third, one point behind Austria.___By JAMES ELLINGWORTH AP Sports WriterJames Ellingworth is at Shareslast_img read more