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first_imgDENVER–It isn’t easy to beat the Giants these days, and it’s become even more difficult for an opponent to score off of Madison Bumgarner.The Rockies accomplished both of those feats Monday, even if the Giants allowed all five runs in their 5-2 loss after Bumgarner came off the mound.The Giants have won 11 of their last 15 games, but all four of their losses have come in games in which they’ve allowed at least three runs after the sixth inning.After snapping off a career-best 22 straight …last_img read more

first_img The custodians of Jagannath say they are dealing with their own worries. Fani didn’t spare the Jagannath temple in Puri, the mainstay of the town. One of the key idols is damaged and losses to some of the temple’s property amount to ₹5 crore, reckons S. Chatterjee, a temple administration official. However, the temple itself is not participating in any relief work or donating any of its corpus to the State to help with rehabilitation. The temple administration receives, on average, ₹2 lakh per day as donation but was expecting help from the government and individuals to prepare for the annual Rath Yatra in July. The long stretch of road, where the idols are carted, is largely clear. “Since the cyclone hit, daily offerings have plummeted. In the first two days, after the storm we barely got ₹700 on an average,” Chatterjee says.In the artisanal village of Raghurajpur, on the outskirts of Puri, the 100-odd families skilled in the art of pattachitra (painting on palm leaf) while away their time. In their part of town, Cyclone Fani brought rain and destroyed some of the paintings. Each painting takes about a day to make, says Gauranga Maharana, an artist who is in the midst of painting a wood-carved swan when we meet him. “The winds and the rain were so strong that my paintings got soaked. Paintings worth nearly ₹20,000 have been damaged,” he says. Maharana, who traces his artistry to “several generations”, estimates that a usual summer day brings in close to a thousand tourists (Raghurajpur is a heritage village), but now with the State battered, the number of tourists, both Indians and foreigners, has dwindled.Also Read Cyclone Fani’s fury creates four new mouths in Odisha’s Chilika Lake  Capital without powerSince Bhubaneswar is bald without tree cover after Fani, the heat and humidity are more palpable than before. There is no power, to add to the woes, so the city after dusk is both dark and uncomfortable. While city-specific figures aren’t available, the State Disaster Management Authority estimates that at least 45,000 km of power lines and 11,000 distribution transformers have been destroyed by the cyclone.Sarath Chandra, a hotel manager, says that normally in early May, when the tourist season is just beginning, his hotel is only about 60% full. “This time we’re nearly 85% full,” he says. “There are no outstation tourists. All of them are locals escaping the heat of their homes.” Chandra’s hotel is among those equipped with a diesel-generation set, which means that there is a steady supply of water and electricity.Also Read Shattered windowpanes, sturdy trees lying flat on the roads, and downed power lines are the prominent markers of Cyclone Fani, which pounded Puri and Bhubaneswar in Odisha on May 3. Three days after Fani, categorised as an ‘extremely severe cyclonic storm’, ploughed through the State killing at least 40 people and injuring 160, the streets of Bhubaneswar are filled with workers of the National Disaster Response Force, dressed in bright orange. Senthil Rao, 28, and five others have spent all morning trying to remove an uprooted banyan tree. “It is an old tree and has blocked an entire stretch of the main road. My work seems interminable,” Rao groans during a tea break.Also Read Cyclone Fani: Naveen Patnaik seeks more kerosene for Odisha  Anger in PuriIts stature as a capital city and the prevalence of concrete houses may have contributed to zero casualties, according to official figures, in Bhubaneswar, but the temple town of Puri, which is about 60 km away, presents a vastly different picture.National Highway 316 that connects the two cities is smooth; it was spared Fani’s wrath. However, on both sides of the highway lie uprooted coconut trees and houses with holes in their tiled roofs. At least 21 deaths have been reported in Puri district.Also Read Long wait for power in Odisha after Cyclone Fani snaps transmission lines Cyclone Fani tears down artists’ village in Odisha A girl from Chandrabhaga village feeding her sister at a shelter in Puri.  The problem of communicationWith mobile phone connection down, the Collectorate, with its compound walls and plantations hit, is relying on a ham radio network. Ramesh Kuthumbaka, a Hyderabad-based advocate and an amateur ham operator, says he was called by OSDMA on May 1. “Two ham radio colleagues and I left Hyderabad and travelled 1,200 km by road in a Qualis to reach OSDMA and set up a ham network. We struggled to come here, there were strong winds. We reached on May 3,” he recounts. Another team of ham operators from Kolkata reached the Puri Collectorate and installed a radio station. “Since then we’ve been helping the State authorities with transmitting and receiving instructions. The Chief Secretary relied on our network. There was nothing else,” he claims. Kuthumbaka has skipped many meals. He complains of the lack of support from the district administration. “There doesn’t seem to be a well-thought-out plan. For instance, in spite of knowing fairly reliably by April 27 that Odisha would be hit, we were told only on the 1st,” he says. However, he will be present in Puri “as long as he is needed”.Sethi points out that the “operational difficulties” and the sheer magnitude of the devastation would mean that returning to normalcy will take weeks. Nearly 100 million kg of rice was readied beforehand, yet distribution is tardy, he says. “We had to evacuate about 1.4 million people within 12 hours. Nearly 200 lakh SMSes were sent to various levels of administration — right down to the village heads of 14 districts,” he says. He explains why people were mobilised into action only by May 1: “Remember, this was after the election exercise, itself an arduous task, had just concluded on April 29. Officers and the administration are human too.” Cyclone Fani: Food distribution on track in Puri center_img This is Rao’s tenth tree since early morning. It’s largely due to the efforts of 600 teams of the State and Central disaster response forces that the city roads are navigable now. Tree trunks and branches have been swept into mounds and line the sidewalks and street corners. There are so many of them that the government has permitted anyone, with the means and the men, to cart them away and use them as fit without the usual tendering and bureaucracy.There is little public and private transport on the streets; only the bulky JCBs can be seen in corners and inner streets. They are clawing out crumbled billboards and the remnants of carts and tyres from the rubble, and lifting logs. Santosh Rout, who manages a fleet of JCBs, says that he has been charging a 30% premium for the use of his machines. “The demand is very high. However, I hear there are nearly 30 teams of JCBs commissioned, so it looks like things will be normal in less than a week,” he says.Also Read  “The air conditioner in the room doesn’t cool but being here is better than being at home,” says Dolly Patra, who is staying with her family at Chandra’s hotel. Her second floor flat, barely 3 km from the hotel, is a cauldron, she explains. Power is expected to return only after a fortnight, and water supply is irregular. When the cyclone howled through her apartment complex, she was scared for herself and her infant. “I was terrified that the asbestos sheets nearby would smash into my bedroom,” she says. After the storm she stayed put at home, but mosquitoes entered her home in droves and she was afraid that her child would fall sick. “I hope to get back home soon or move to a relative’s place. Staying in a hotel is expensive for us,” she says.At the Secretariat of the Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA), Bishnupada Sethi presides over a crew of officers who compile and coordinate information with district centres and the IMD. Details of damage, relief dispensed and lacunae are continually wired to Sethi’s office. While the unit’s coordination has earned plaudits — from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the United Nations — Sethi says that in spite of the preparation and the “memories of 1999”, citizens were “mentally unprepared” for the impending disaster. “This is a State where cyclones recur. At the State level, there are plans and a standard operating procedure to deal with the eventuality. However, many were unprepared. In fact, many people refused to leave their thatched houses and go to shelters,” he notes.  Fani, which started out in the Bay of Bengal in the last week of April, was quite unlike the typical storms that Odisha is accustomed to. From 1965 to 2017, the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea collectively registered 46 ‘severe cyclonic storms’. More than half of them occurred between October and December. Seven of them occurred in May and only two (in 1966 and 1976) were recorded in April, according to data from the India Meteorological Department’s cyclone statistics unit. Before Fani, only one of them (in 1966) had actually made landfall over India.While modern, meteorological record-keeping dates furious cyclones in Odisha to as far as back to 1831, to the average citizen, in contemporary times 1999 marked the turning point for the State. The cyclone that hit that year was catastrophic: it killed thousands, obliterated homes, and left a trail of destruction. The State was cut off from the rest of the country, and it was weeks before the magnitude of the tragedy hit home. Since then, Odisha has prepared itself in various ways to face such cyclones — by building specially crafted storm shelters and commissioning electric poles that are designed to withstand strong gales.By May 1, the weather department was confident that Fani would be unforgiving, but not as powerful as BOB 06 (cyclones then didn’t have names) that had hit the port town of Paradip in 1999.  The cyclones of MayHoused in a single-storey building, the walls of which are plastered with charts describing El Nino, warming seas and other climate phenomena, the scientists at the State headquarters of the IMD are working in the corridors and verandahs to escape the stifling heat. Habibur Rehman Biswas, the chief scientist of the department, says he hadn’t left the office for 72 hours straight after May 1. “Initially, we thought it would be a typical summer cyclone of the Bay of Bengal. We thought it would go either towards Andhra Pradesh or turn towards Bangladesh and Myanmar and miss the Odisha coast. We were wrong.”Meteorologists note with worry that so-called recurving cyclones — ones that sharply turn eastwards — are becoming more frequent around the Indian Ocean. The IMD publicly disseminates information via a WhatsApp group that has senior district administration officials and media representatives. “We’re always getting inputs, but with power gone, it’s a bit slow. Still, there are other IMD agencies that pick up inputs and relay them. There will always be regular inputs, come what may,” he says.With Cyclone Fani gone, Rehman doesn’t rule out the possibility of another strong cyclone. “There’s nothing which says that such a strong storm won’t lead to another one in a few weeks, though there aren’t immediate indications yet. May is usually when there are many more cyclones.” Cyclone Fani causes extensive damage to power infrastructure, standing trees  Not far from the beach, where the sea is now placid, anger is growing at the government shelter near Talabaniya in Puri town. This pink building is one among the 879 constructed by the Odisha government across Puri, Cuttack and Khordha. The two-storey buildings, designed in 2004 with assistance from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, are low-cost and capable of accommodating about 3,000 people. They are resilient to wind speeds greater than 200 kmph. The Talabaniya shelter is also equipped with an alarm and a horn. In the event of an impending storm, instructions are relayed to those living in thatched houses, or the homeless, to come to the shelter.“There were warnings on the day before the cyclone struck and many of us came to the shelter,” says Pintu Pradhan, who works in a nearby hotel. “A day before the storm, we were given rice and dal. On the day of the storm we were given packed dry fruits, chuda (flattened rice) and gur (jaggery). There’s been no food ever since.” Pradhan’s house, along with the houses of about 700 others of the Biju Nagar slum, was reduced to rubble. Only those with “food security cards,” says Pradhan, were eligible for the Chief Minister’s relief package of ₹2,000 and 50 kg of rice per month as well as polythene sheets that could be used as roofs. There were families who lost everything in the storm and now have no food, water or jobs, he says.While Pradhan and several men, most of them daily wage labourers, rue the absence of primarily benefits, the women of Biju Nagar trek a kilometre to the grounds of the government technical training institute to collect fallen branches and twigs to use as firewood. The trunks are also useful to rebuild houses, one of them points out. Another group of women has congregated at the Puri Collectorate to protest against the unavailability of food and water. Due to the absence of an effective communication system, the promised welfare and supplies are not making their way to the people, says Shanti, one of the protesters. As part of relief measures, residents are eligible for up to ₹95,000 for ‘fully damaged’ structures and compensation for damage to agricultural and horticultural crop, and fisheries.Balwant Singh, the Puri District Collector, who assumed charge on May 7, says the lack of power and telecommunication has hampered access to supplies. “There’s a standard operating procedure in place. Setting up free kitchens near shelters and restoring road connectivity are our immediate priorities. For all that we need to have the communication system with Bhubaneswar running smoothly,” he adds.Also Read Cyclone Fani: Many families from Odisha flee to Visakhapatnam to escape havoc A view of the destruction caused by Cyclone Fani after its landfall, in Puri, Friday, May 3, 2019.  | Photo Credit: PTI  Another challenge, adds Sethi, was to convince people to leave their homes and rush to the shelters. “Often they wouldn’t listen. We have seen it here every time there has been a cyclone. People say they will weather the storm and then they all suffer.”In Brahmagiri town in Puri, a block-level official says that in the administrative block of Bhagawat Patna, nearly 27,289 people had to be evacuated. “Many of them refused to come, saying Lord Jagannath would keep them safe,” he recounts. “There were four deaths, but it’s not confirmed if they were specifically due to the cyclone.”Also Readlast_img read more

first_imgView comments Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:18We’ll back Duterte, but we won’t be lapdogs – Dela Rosa04:11Robredo accepts Duterte’s drug czar post appointment01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa “We just didn’t want to leave our fate in the hands of other teams,” said coach Vergel Meneses as the Bombers entered the Final Four for the fifth time in seven seasons.Tey Teodoro finished with 19 points, before limping off in the last two minutes due to an ankle injury, while Jed Mendoza added 10 points, including a couple of key baskets in the final period that helped put away the Cardinals.The Chiefs refused to let up in the final period even after losing top playmaker Kent Salado due to a knee injury midway in the last quarter.Salado fired 22 points, before leaving the game.“With what happened today, I need to play for us to have a chance in the Final Four,” said Salado.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Jose Rizal U punched its ticket to the Final Four, while Arellano lived to fight another day as the NCAA Season 93 playoff race took another twist on Tuesday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.In cruise control for most of the game, the Heavy Bombers avoided complications with a narrow 62-58 victory over the Mapua Cardinals, leaving Letran, Arellano, San Sebastian and Emilio Aguinaldo College to fight it out for the remaining Final Four berth.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary LATEST STORIES The win improved the Bombers’ record to 11-6, assuring them of third spot at the end of the elimination round.But the Chiefs blew the race for the remaining Final Four spot open after turning back the San Sebastian Stags, 85-79, in the second game.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutWhile Letran still has the inside track for the last postseason berth with an 8-8 record, Arellano’s win forged a tie at fifth spot with San Sebastian at 7-9.Emilio Aguinaldo College remains in contention with a 6-10 record, but the Generals have to win their remaining games while hoping that no other contender goes beyond nine wins. Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PHcenter_img Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City MOST READ Read Next Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president NU targets perfect tourney BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients last_img read more

first_imgTORONTO – The bar is now higher for homebuyers to qualify for mortgages in Canada after the central bank raised a key metric used in stress tests that determine borrowers’ eligibility.The Bank of Canada raised the conventional five-year mortgage rate from 5.14 per cent to 5.34 per cent after all Big Six banks raised their posted five-year fixed mortgage rates in recent weeks.The central bank qualifying rate is separate from the actual mortgage rates offered by banks to borrowers, but is used to assess homebuyers who are seeking loans.Homebuyers with less than a 20 per cent down payment seeking an insured mortgage must qualify at the central bank’s benchmark five-year mortgage rate.And as of Jan. 1, buyers who don’t need mortgage insurance are required to prove they can handle payments at a qualifying rate of the greater of the central bank’s five-year benchmark rate or two percentage points higher than the contractual mortgage rate.“Mortgage borrowers will be qualifying for less than they were able to earlier this year,” mortgage broker Samantha Brookes said in an email. “With all the new rule changes, we’ve definitely noticed the effect on the market with home purchases, renewals and refinances.”The higher rates come as an estimated 47 per cent of all existing mortgages will need to be refinanced in 2018, up from the 25 to 35 per cent range in a typical year, according to a recent CIBC Capital Markets report.The increase is an unintended consequence of various rounds of regulatory changes in the past few years aimed at reducing risk coupled with rising house prices that made it harder for homebuyers to qualify.Borrowers who find the bar too high for the home they want can make some adjustments in order to make a purchase, she said. Those options include purchasing a smaller home and taking on less mortgage, or purchasing where prices are lower, added Brookes, who is founder of Mortgages of Canada.The jump in the mortgage qualifying rate comes after Canada’s largest lenders raised their benchmark posted five-year fixed mortgage rates in recent weeks as the cost of borrowing rises.In late April, TD Bank was the first of the Big Five lenders to raise the benchmark rate, increasing it from 5.14 per cent to 5.59 per cent, due to factors including the “competitive landscape, the cost of lending and managing risk.” Royal Bank of Canada, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, National Bank of Canada, Bank of Montreal and the Bank of Nova Scotia followed suit, but with smaller increases.The slew of bank moves was preceded by a rise in government bond yields. The yield on the Government of Canada benchmark five-year bond was 2.16 per cent on Tuesday, compared to 1.01 per cent a year earlier. Fixed-rate mortgages tend to move with government bond yields of a similar term, reflecting the change in borrowing costs.last_img read more

first_imgTAYLOR, B.C. — Once again, YRB North Peace is going to be doing welding operations on the metal deck of the Taylor Bridge this week.Welding operations will be taking place tonight and tomorrow night between 7:00 p.m. and 3:30 a.m. During these times, the bridge will be reduced to single-lane alternating traffic with delays of up to 20 minutes in both directions directed by a pilot vehicle. YRB asks motorists using the bridge during these times to drive with caution, as there will be a large number of working personnel and equipment.YRB is apologizing for any inconvenience the work may cause. Updates on this and other road work can be found online at DriveBC.ca. For questions or concerns, or to report a load that is 3.6 metres or wider that is scheduled to cross the bridge during welding, please contact YRB’s office toll-free at 1-888-883-6688. You can also follow YRB on Twitter.last_img read more

first_imgBut whereas the cerebral Pierre Trudeau hated the back-slapping, baby-kissing, retail side of politics, English says his son seems to feed off the energy he derives from engaging directly with people. Liberal strategists are counting on him out-perform his rivals on the hustings.The latest Liberal slogan — “Choose Forward” — appeals to Canadians to continue supporting the party’s general direction, implicitly acknowledging that not everyone is entirely satisfied with some of the particulars. It attempts to frame the election as a choice between going forward or backward, not as a referendum on Trudeau’s first four years.As Trudeau put it in the interview: “I think people get that there is a choice in this election, that it’s not about judging me on everything you’d hoped I’d do and where I might not have fulfilled all everyone’s individual hopes for what this could be.”According to strategists, the key to victory is framing the election as a binary choice between the Liberals and Conservatives. In other words, forget about those New Democrats and Greens, whom Liberals intend to mention as little as possible even while emphasizing the values and policies they share. OTTAWA — Canada’s 2019 federal election could wind up looking a lot like the 1972 cliffhanger — the last time a Trudeau asked Canadians for a second mandate after the first blush of Trudeaumania had dissipated.But if Liberals play their cards right, party strategists are hoping it will end up more like a replay of 2015, with Canadians choosing to continue moving forward with Justin Trudeau’s progressive agenda rather than going back to the bad old days of Stephen Harper’s Conservatives.Never mind that Harper is no longer Conservative leader. His successor, Andrew Scheer, is, by his own admission, “Stephen Harper with a smile” and his agenda, by the Liberals’ telling, is Harper’s agenda: tax breaks for the wealthy, cuts in services for everyone else, no action on climate change, the politics of fear and division. They’ll reinforce that message by tying Scheer wherever possible to someone else who isn’t running: Ontario’s unpopular Progressive Conservative premier, Doug Ford. And they’ll no doubt throw in, at least obliquely, references to mercurial U.S. President Donald Trump.Here’s how Trudeau himself framed the choice in a recent interview:“We are on a very good path and we need to continue it because we see what happens elsewhere in the world when people make poor choices. Hell, we’re seeing in Ontario what happens with cuts to services and tax breaks for the rich,” he said.“I mean, it doesn’t work and that’s the big thing that we turned around (in 2015). We said no, you don’t grow an economy through trickle-down, you grow it through investing in people, investing in their communities. That was the big disagreement we had with the Conservatives in 2015 and it remains the big disagreement we have with them in 2019.”At the moment, however, polls suggest the Liberals are essentially tied with the Conservatives, with neither in a position to capture a majority of seats in the House of Commons. Should that hold, the outcome could be very similar to 1972, when the Liberals under Trudeau’s father Pierre wound up with the barest of minorities, just two seats ahead of the Progressive Conservatives.There are, says historian and former Liberal MP John English, some “really striking parallels” between Trudeau senior’s bid for a second term and that of his eldest son. Both swept to power on a wave of adulation rarely seen in Canadian politics, creating unrealistic expectations that crashed against the hard rock of reality during four years of governing. At the same time, Liberals need to motivate progressive voters to back Trudeau again. They can’t afford to let disappointed progressives — turned off by Trudeau buying a petroleum pipeline or scrapping his promise to end Canada’s first-past-the-post electoral system or the SNC-Lavalin ethics imbroglio, for instance  — to drift over to the NDP or Greens, or just stay home. Robust turnout will be crucial, as it was in 2015 when young voters turned out in droves to support the Liberals.Liberals are under no illusions they’ll be able to replicate the enthusiasm that attended Trudeau’s debut election. But they’ll emphasize what they say is at stake if the Conservatives win, reversing all the progress that’s been made on everything from climate change to gender equality and gay rights — a tactic evident in the interview with Trudeau.“Just across the country, seeing conservative premiers elected from the Rockies to the Bay of Fundy, who are trying to turn back the clock on the fight against climate change. I mean people are like, whoa, there is a lot at stake,” he said.While national poll numbers suggest a dead heat with the Conservatives, regional results tend to favour the Liberals in areas with lots of seats, such as Ontario and Quebec. They expect to lose MPs in the Prairies and know they’re unlikely to sweep all 32 seats in the Atlantic provinces as they did in 2015, although they hope to hang onto most. What will happen in British Columbia, where a four-way fight among Liberals, Conservatives, NDP and Greens is playing out, is unpredictable.But Liberals are still hoping to offset some of those losses with gains in Central Canada, which accounts for almost 60 per cent of the 338 seats up for grabs, capitalizing on Ford’s unpopularity in Ontario and the collapse of the NDP in Quebec.KEYS TO VICTORY:— Frame the election as a binary choice between forward-looking Liberals and backward-looking Conservatives.— Paint Scheer as a clone of Stephen Harper and a yes-man to conservative premiers, particularly Ontario’s unpopular Doug Ford.— Motivate disappointed progressive voters to back Trudeau once again by emphasizing that all the progress made, however imperfect, would be reversed if the Conservatives win.— Pick up seats in Ontario and Quebec to offset inevitable losses elsewhere.— Ensure Justin Trudeau is at the top of his game. Joan Bryden, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Friday’s France-Switzerland tilt represents a battle for first place in Group E, as both teams are tied with three points after winning their first matches. But though the winner will be in the driver’s seat for advancement, the stakes aren’t especially high for the loser either.Italy vs. Costa Rica: 12 p.m. EDTFrance vs. Switzerland: 3 p.m. EDTEcuador vs. Honduras: 6 p.m. EDTIn briefIN DEPTHAs things stand, France has a 91.8 percent chance of getting into the knockout stage of the tournament, and the Swiss check in at 80.9 percent. Ecuador and Honduras — who make up the rest of Group E and also face off Friday — lag far behind, at 20.3 and 7.1 percent, respectively.Honduras has a bleak outlook, mainly because they are the second-worst team in the World Cup field, according to ESPN’s Soccer Power Index (SPI). But Ecuador, according to SPI, is essentially Switzerland’s equal; the only difference in its advancement probabilities stems from Switzerland’s thrilling added-time victory over Ecuador on Sunday. For Ecuador, it was the one that got away; without that win, the model projects Ecuador to amass only 2.8 points within the group — they’re likely to beat Honduras but will be clear underdogs against France.Meanwhile, if Switzerland loses to France on Friday, the Swiss would still project to finish second in the group, because the meek Honduran squad is their only remaining hurdle. In fact, if the Swiss lose to France, Ecuador beats Honduras, and Switzerland only earns a draw against Honduras (an unlikely outcome), the Swiss would still be expected to advance over Ecuador by a slim margin — unless Ecuador beats France (or draws and posts a better goal differential than Switzerland). In other words, there are a lot of ways the Swiss can get out of Group E that don’t depend on them picking up points against France.The situation playing out in Group D, where Italy will face Costa Rica at noon Friday, is superficially similar. Like France and Switzerland, Costa Rica and Italy won their first matches of the tournament. Neither team’s odds of advancement are quite as high as its counterparts in Group E, though, mainly because there are no weak sides like Honduras to pick up easy points against. Costa Rica is the worst SPI team in the group, and it ranks 25th in the world.Whoever loses will have a fighting chance against Uruguay to qualify for the knockout round in the group’s second position. But that’s nowhere near as favorable a spot as the France-Switzerland loser will be sitting in after the day’s action ends.YesterdayLuis Suarez and Wayne Rooney prompted many questions before Thursday’s Group D showdown between Uruguay and England. Would Suarez, who missed Uruguay’s loss to Costa Rica in its World Cup opener because of knee surgery, be match-fit for 90 minutes in a must-win game? Could Rooney, whose performance against Italy brought his place in England’s lineup into question, break his career World Cup scoring drought?Those questions were answered in Sao Paulo.Suarez hadn’t played since May 11, but there was no evidence of rust. Of his four shots, two were on target — both goals. The latter goal, breaking a tie in the 85th minute, virtually ensured England’s second-consecutive loss in the tournament’s group stage, something England hadn’t experienced since 1950.Uruguay beat a European team at the World Cup for the first time in 16 matches since 1970, but don’t blame Rooney. He got off four shots, including two on goal and another that hit the post. Rooney found his World Cup breakthrough with a 75th-minute equalizer. The goal took him 10 World Cup matches — 758 minutes of play.England’s 78.1 pass completion percentage ranked in the bottom 35 percent of all teams in this World Cup, but it was easily the best in this game. Uruguay posted the worst completion percentage by a winning team in a World Cup win since at least the 1966 tournament (the start of ESPN Stats & Info’s data set). Uruguay’s 59.2 pass completion percentage against England was the only team performance in a game below 65 percent at this tournament.Other attacking and possession statistics favored England, including second-half touches in the attacking third (89 to Uruguay’s 57). The biggest stats, however, belonged to Suarez: two shots on target, two goals, 2-1 to Uruguay. — ESPN Stats & Info GroupOFF THE PITCHAs neighbors, France and Switzerland have a lot more in common than a World Cup match. Given their proximity, it makes sense that there would be population overlap. Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development data from 2009 shows that Switzerland has provided over twice the amount of nationals living in France than the other way around; there were 90,551 Swiss nationals living in France and 42,862 French nationals living in Switzerland. But given the population of each country, the French living in Switzerland make up five times the share of Swiss who made the opposite trek.There is one caveat to that data: Things have gotten icy between the two countries since it was compiled. In December 2012, France’s president, François Hollande, announced that wealthy French residents of Switzerland would have to pay French taxes and Swiss taxes, which one Swiss politician called a “declaration of war.” It’s unclear how this spat has affected migration between the countries, but it’s safe to say that the two nations are no longer as chummy as they once were. — Hayley MunguiaFURTHER READINGWe’re Telling England There’s a Chance!Defending World Cup Champions Keep Flaming OutCORRECTION (June 20, 10:05 a.m.): A previous version of the chart in this article showed the incorrect proportion of France’s projected 53 percent win. read more

OSU cheerleaders lead OSU football players out of the field at Ohio Stadium prior to the annual Spring Game on April 18. Team Gray defeated Team Scarlet, 17-14. Credit: Muyao Shen / Lantern photographer With an unprecedented crowd on hand, the 2015 Ohio State football team got its first taste of live action.In front of an announced national Spring Game record crowd of 99,391, the Buckeyes held their annual intrasquad Spring Game at Ohio Stadium. The matchup — played between the Scarlet and Gray teams — was a back-and-forth affair, with Gray holding on for a 17-14 win.“Unbelievable,” senior defensive lineman Tommy Schutt said about the record crowd. “Obviously, we were expecting a really big crowd, but 100,000 is just, wow, Buckeye nation’s unbelievable, and having that many at the Spring Game is unbelievable.”Each of the two starting quarterbacks — redshirt-junior Cardale Jones of the Gray team and redshirt-freshman Stephen Collier of the Scarlet side — labored through the first half, which saw Gray hold a 10-7 lead.Jones went into the break completing 15 of 33 passes for 224 yards. Of those, 108 were pulled in by redshirt-senior wide receiver Corey Smith, who also scored Scarlet’s only first-half touchdown on a 58-yard reception.Collier, on the other hand, could not find any rhythm until the end of the half, when he found redshirt-freshman wide receiver Terry McLaurin for a 35-yard score with no time left on the clock.Collier, a product of Leesburg, Ga., ended the half just 7-of-19 for 81 yards. He was also responsible for four first-half turnovers, including a trio of interceptions and a lost fumble.Scarlet made a comeback in the third quarter, scoring its second unanswered touchdown to take a 14-10 lead after three periods.Collier led a 14-play, 55-yard drive that ended with a three-yard pass to redshirt-freshman wide receiver Parris Campbell as the quarter expired.However, Jones, last season’s national championship-winning quarterback, engineered a 55-yard, 50-second drive to put Gray back in front.Gray got the ball after a Scarlet turnover on downs, and needed just two passes to Smith — the latter of which was a 37-yard touchdown — to put his side up three.Smith finished the game with six receptions for 174 yards and each of Gray’s two touchdowns.Offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Ed Warinner said he believes Smith has the potential to play at that level on a regular basis, but he has work to do.“Consistency is his issue. He has some talent, and he shows it. Today he showed his talent. His deal, to be someone we talk about consistently, is to be consistent,” Warinner said. “When he does show up and looks locked in, he’s really good.”Collier had one final opportunity to go back in front, but a 25-yard pass to the end zone intended for redshirt-senior wide receiver Jeff Greene missed the mark as time expired, sealing the Gray victory.OSU coach Urban Meyer said while he sees several individual players who have taken steps forward since last season, the team still has a long way to go.“We did not improve as a team,” Meyer said. “That was not a good team out there.“That’s going to be interesting to watch for the Buckeyes this summer and how they handle themselves, how they behave, how they train and how they come together as a team, because that team has got to be better by the time (strength and conditioning) coach (Mickey Marotti) hands me the team like he does every summer.”Jones attempted 42 passes on the afternoon, completing 19 of them for 304 yards. He also threw two interceptions in the contest.Jones said the in-game experience did not feel like much, but he got a lot out of making his first-ever start at Ohio Stadium.“I felt like another practice, because that’s what we did almost every day in practice, as far as spring ball,” Jones said. “So, I mean, I think it was pretty much the atmosphere (that was the most important experience).”The Buckeyes are scheduled to open the 2015 regular season on the road against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va. read more

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, February 15, 2018 – Nassau – Minister of the Environment & Housing, the Hon. Romauld S. Ferreira reminded contractors of their duty to protect the environment at Thursday’s ‘Moving Forward’ Contractors Association’s Construction Training Seminar, under the theme “Building Each Other for a Better Bahamas.”The Minister addressed contractors and other members of the construction industry at New Covenant Baptist Church on East West Highway.  He highlighted the importance of their profession in controlling pollution, and other threats and hazards to the environment, stating that the resources in our environment are not unlimited and we must appreciate that we are all interconnected, which makes all of us our ‘brothers’ and sisters’ keeper.’“The environment is everything and everything depends on the circumstances by which we live.  Those conditions determine everything and includes everything, living and non-living; the natural and the built environment.  Our environment serves its purpose in preserving our life each and every day.  It is our duty to value it, and to care about the health of our environment, and conscientiously protect our environment from any damage,” said Minister Ferreira.He added that no one could deny the construction industry plays an important role in building national socio-economic development, through creating structure, shelter, and employment.“We all know that the strength of our economy is directly related to the construction industry because whenever it goes down, the ripple effect is felt through every sphere in our community.  Construction is our third industry and contributes to 10 percent of our GDP.  Today the Bahamian Construction Industry is starting to show signs of growth as it recovers from the recent downturn in the economy,” said Minister Ferreira.The seminar ended on Saturday, February 10, 2018.By: Gena GibbsPhoto captions: Header: Minister of the Environment & Housing, the Hon. Romauld Ferreira gave opening remarks at the ‘Moving Forward’ Contractors Association’s Construction Training Seminar, February 8, 2018, at New Covenant Baptist Church on East West Highway.  (BIS Photo/Gena Gibbs)Insert: Building contractors listen to opening remarks by Environment Minister Romauld Ferreira.  (BIS Photo/Gena Gibbs) Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

first_img October 24, 2018 KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, Posted: October 24, 2018 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — The ride-hailing service Lyft will offer discounted and free rides to San Diego residents on Nov. 6 to make voting in the mid-term election easier.The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement found that for prospective voters, especially those between ages 18 and 29, lack of transportation is one of the biggest detriments to voting. Roughly 19 percent of young voters with college credits and 35 percent of young voters without any college experience failed to vote in 2016 because they lacked a way to get to a polling station.Citing that data, Lyft is offering 50 percent off rides to the polls throughout the county on Election Day. Lyft will also offer free rides in certain zip codes because of donations from nonprofits like Voto Latino, the National Federation of the Blind and the San Diego-based Faith in Action.At Lyft, we’re working to improve lives by connecting people and their communities through the world’s best transportation. This Election Day, we want to help people in San Diego County exercise their right to vote,” said Lyft San Diego Market Manager Hao Meng. “Every voice is important, and we’re excited to help make them heard in this year’s elections.”Residents can visit buzzfeed.com/pollup2018/welcome-to-pollup2018 to receive their 50-percent-off promo codes as well as check to see if they are eligible to have their fare waived. Lyft offering free and discounted rides in San Diego on election day Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more