Coronavirus: CONMEBOL urges FIFA to postpone World Cup 2022 qualifiers

first_imgAsuncion: The South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) has urged FIFA to postpone the World Cup 2022 qualifiers to September as a preventive measure against the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.“Request FIFA to postpone the South American qualifying rounds for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 to September 2020,” CONMEBOL said in a statement read.“By doing this, the confederation ensures all precautions are taken against the global and regional spread of the coronavirus, in line with the recommendations of international health authorities,” it added.The South American zone’s opening World Cup qualifiers had been scheduled to take place on March 26, 27 and 31 but were suspended last week. Brazil is due to host Bolivia and travel to Peru in their first two qualifiers while Argentina is scheduled to host Ecuador and visit Bolivia.The 2022 World Cup is scheduled to be played in Qatar from November 21 to December 18.Earlier, the CONMEBOL had postponed the Copa America until the summer of 2021. The 12-team tournament, which had originally been scheduled to take place from June 12 to July 12 in Colombia and Argentina, follows the 16th edition of the euros which also has been postponed to 2021 amidst the crisis unleashed by the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. IANSAlso Read: Copa America postponed until summer of 2021: CONMEBOLAlso Watch: Veterinary College in Guwahati creates hand sanitizers to fight the shortage of Sanitizers in Assamlast_img read more

West Indies women placing heavy emphasis on fitness

first_imgCMC – WEST Indies women have been placing heavy emphasis on personal fitness, even though the novel coronavirus pandemic has ruled out any possibility of on-field action for the foreseeable future.Lead selector Ann Browne-John said each member of the squad had been issued with fitness plans, allowing them to remain in shape in preparation for the resumption of international cricket.“In the interim from a senior team perspective, I’m aware that all the coaches and all the training staff have given the girls work to do that they can be doing at their home even if they’re on lockdown,” Browne-John told DBS Radio here.“We’ve seen videos where so many people are doing work in their home gyms, on their balconies, in their yards; so our girls are doing the same, and they have their programmes and we hope when they’re able to come back to camp or when we’re able to start back any series, that they’ll be fit, raring and ready to go.“So, I know the coaches are in contact with them constantly and we hope that we all will get through this safely.”West Indies Women were preparing for a hectic schedule before the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis, which disrupted the Caribbean and global cricket itinerary.The regional side were scheduled to be involved for their respective territories in the Regional Super50 Cup in Guyana starting last month, before taking on South Africa Women in a five-match One-Day International series from May 30 to June 10 in Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.They were also expected to feature in World Cup qualifiers in Sri Lanka in June and July, in preparation for next year’s 50-overs World Cup in New Zealand.While neither international assignment has been officially cancelled, they are highly unlikely to take place, leaving the Caribbean side devoid of match practice.However, Browne-John said the safety of all players amidst the pandemic remained the priority for administrators.“The coronavirus is affecting all aspects of life in the entire world. This is something that is unprecedented and it is also affecting sports, sportsmen and sportswomen worldwide,” she explained.“As the Caribbean public would be aware, cricket has not been spared, so it has badly affected not only men’s cricket,but girls cricket, boys, juniors and everybody.“It has come at a time when West Indies women had a lot of cricket ahead of us because South Africa was supposed to come … and then we were supposed to have the World Cup qualifiers and before that we had the regional tournament … and the Under-19 girls’ tournament that was to be held in Trinidad and Tobago.”She continued: “But it has affected everyone and we just have to ensure that the players remain safe, that when this is all finished, we have all the players available to return to cricket.”West Indies Women are coming off a poor showing in the T20 World Cup in Australia earlier this year when they failed to reach the semi-finals for the first time in six appearances, after winning just one in four matches to finish third in their group.last_img read more

Big love for Michigan’s Big House

first_imgOne of the best quotes I’ve ever heard came in a Rick Reilly column many years ago in the form of a graduation address to a class of top athletes. His speech ends with, “Remember when you were a kid? All you dreamed of was playing centerfield for the New York Yankees. Soon, you’ll be there. Don’t forget to tingle.”I’ve always related that to sports writing, since I’m no Mickey Mantle, Bernie Williams or Johnny Damon on the diamond. We all have so many dreams, and in reality, so few of them ever come true. And when one does come true, I definitely don’t want to let the moment pass me by.So far this fall, I’m living out one of my dreams: writing football for a major university. The first four games have been a blast, and I’m looking forward to the next eight (or nine, if there’s a bowl game).But the highlight of my season — the one game that stuck out to me when I checked out Wisconsin’s schedule last November after being hired — came last Saturday. A chance to not only watch the Badgers have a rematch with historic Michigan, but to enter the gates of a college football Mecca.Michigan Stadium. Land of the Wolverines, home of the M Den. The Big House.From the outside, the House doesn’t look very big, or impressive for that matter. As we drove up toward the stadium, one of our photographers said jokingly from the backseat, “Man, I could almost jump right onto the field from out here!”Indeed, the very top row stands no more than 30 feet above the ground level surrounding the seats. Yes, we were aware the bowl-shaped stadium is built downward into the ground, but you can’t deny a first impression.But upon entering view of the field, we could see how this place stuffs 110,000 people inside for a Big Ten match-up. Not to mock one of the University of Wisconsin’s greatest traditions, but when you say the Big House, you really have said it all upon laying eyes on the vastness of the bleachers. Instead of building upward, as in the style of Camp Randall and most football stadiums in the United States, the bowl-style structure protrudes outward from the playing area.This does have its disadvantages. When an opponent is backed up inside their own 10, the sound coming from Wisconsin’s student section can be deafening as all the fans are close to the field. But because the upper rows of the Big House stick backward, it’s harder to hear all the students, and thus the sound isn’t quite as boisterous. My colleague, Dave McGrath, dubbed it “the quietest 100,000 people you’ll ever hear.”(One quick side-note: it could just be me, but it seemed like Michigan’s student section wasn’t nearly as rude as others. Even when we went down to the sidelines at the end of the game, the heckling of UW’s players, surprisingly, wasn’t vulgar at all. Hmmm … from Michigan’s perspective, I’m not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing. But anyway …)As for its appearance, Michigan Stadium is nothing to look at, to be sure. Dave went so far as to call it a “goat farm.” It seemed to be a general consensus, at least by visiting Wisconsin fans and media, that Michigan Stadium is past its prime and needs to be renovated or replaced.I have to disagree. I suppose I favor the sleekness of Camp Randall, but I’ve got a soft spot for that retro look as well. You know how when you look at a picture, you can instantly tell when that picture was taken — whether it be in the last few years or a hundred years ago? Michigan Stadium ain’t like that — staring out at 100,000-plus people, I couldn’t tell if I was sitting in the year 2006 or back in 1927, when the Big House was born.There are no lights (they call in portable lights when they have to stage a night game), no actual seats with fancy cushions (just really long bleachers for every fan), and — here’s the stunner — no advertising. Anywhere in the stadium. Not one swoosh or slogan in sight, not a beer bottle or brand name to be found. I don’t know why, but I thought that was really, really cool.When it boils down to it, I would say I’m glad my season pass is for the newly renovated Camp Randall, but if I could visit one and only one stadium, I’d pick Michigan Stadium. It’s just one of those things … like how you wouldn’t live in Cooperstown, N.Y., but you officially join the Real Sports Fan Club when you first witness the Baseball Hall of Fame.Good news, however, for Wolverines fans who want a newer-looking stadium. After the game, we chatted with one of the security guards at the stadium, who informed us of some repairs in the makings for the Big House — reportedly a $250 million overhaul — set to be underway in the next five years.It would be great to see Michigan Stadium get a facelift … I guess. Like I said, the retro look is cool, and it wouldn’t surprise me if most Michigan fans now prefer it that way.One last thing … during the Badgers’ lone touchdown, as P.J. Hill caught the ball and saw nothing but open field in front of him, I started to yell, “Seven. Seven, seven, seven!” referring to the lead Wisconsin was about to take.Sure, it’s hard not being able to cheer for Wisconsin while in the press box, but this was the first time I showed any bias of any kind. Needless to say, I was a little embarrassed.Was it that I was just excited over the Badgers drawing first blood? Perhaps. But I’m thinking the emotion of getting to watch a game in the Big House came out in the heat of that moment.That was just my way of making sure the moment didn’t pass me by. Say what you want about Michigan Stadium in the 21st century, but that thing’s a historic landmark for college football, and I feel honored to have been a part of it for the first time.What’s your take on Michigan Stadium? A piece of history or a piece of you-know-what? Post your comment below or send your thoughts on the Big House to [email protected]last_img read more

Court Restrains NBBF Factions from Interference in Kwese League

first_imgThe presiding judge, Justice A.I. Chikere, in an order of interlocutory injunction granted on March 18, 2019 restrained both factions of NBBF from further enforcing or imposing any guidelines or conditions for the purpose of selecting and/or conducting any league for selecting Nigeria’s male basketball representatives for African continental competition.The substantive suit is scheduled for hearing on April 18, 2019.Addressing newsmen on the court’s order, counsel to the plaintiffs, Josiah Daniel, said his clients were seeking the declaration of the court, that in face of fictionalised basketball federation in Nigeria and the absence of an extant update and FIBA approved local constitution regulating the affairs of NBBF, none of the existing factional executive boards of the federation was competent to regulate the plaintiffs who are nonpartisan, nonpolitical neutral basketball stakeholders in Nigeria.He said his clients were in addition to other reliefs, among others were asking the court to declare them independent and autonomous bodies and self- regulating body, pending when the national basketball federation would have an updated and FIBA approved version of local constitution regulating its affairs.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Olawale Ajimotokan in AbujaThe Federal High Court in Abuja has restrained the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) factions led by Musa Kida and Tijjani Umar, from conducting any fresh Premier Basketball League for the purposes selecting the men basketball club representatives to the 2018/2019 African Continental Club Championship pending the determination of the substantive suit before it.The management boards of Kwese Premier League and two clubs, Gombe Bulls Basketball Club and Kwara Falcons Basketball Club, who are both winner and runner up of the 2018 Kwese Premier Basketball League, had approached the High Court in Abuja, asking for an order of interlocutory injunction restraining the defendants, their agents or servants whosoever from substituting them with any other clubs to represent Nigeria at the Zone B African Basketball Club Championship or interfering in the Kwese Premier Basketball League.last_img read more