CHAN Qualifier: Amapakabo names Ezenwa, Effiong, 18 others for Togo

first_imgRelatedPosts Super Eagles soar on FIFA ranking FIFA ranking: Nigeria moves up by two spots, now world 29th Omeruo welcomes second child Coach Imama Amapakabo has named the 20 players who will fly Nigeria’s flag at the African Nations Championship qualifying match against Togo in Lome. The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Super Eagles B team are expected to trade tackles against the Sparrow Hawks on Sunday. Ademola Olajire, Director of Communications at the Nigeria Football Federation, revealed the names of the players in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja. He said: “First choice in goal Adamu Abubakar is joined by Super Eagles’ goaltender Ikechukwu Ezenwa and Enyimba’s Theophilus Afelokhai, as well as defenders Olisah Ndah, John Lazarus, Etboy Akpan and Ebube Duru. “There are also ace forward Ndifreke Effiong (who netted two of the five goals that condemned Sudan to the scrap heap in the final round of the U23 AFCON qualifying series), Mfon Udoh and Tosin Omoyele. “The delegation will fly out of Abuja on Friday to Lome, where they face the Sparrow Hawks at the Stade de Kegue as from 4pm on Sunday.”20 EAGLES B FOR TOGO Theophilus Afelokhai (Enyimba FC); Adamu Abubakar (Wikki Tourists); Olisah Ndah (Remo Stars); Denis Okon (Akwa United); Stephen Manyo (Enyimba FC); John Lazarus (Lobi Stars). Etboy Akpan (Akwa United); Ebube Duru (Lobi Stars); Oluwadamilare Olatunji (Enyimba FC); Fatai Gbadamosi (Shooting Stars); Ndifreke Effiong (Akwa United); Seth Mayi (Remo Stars). William Ukeme (Wikki Tourists); Samuel Matthias (Akwa United); Chisom Orji (Collin Edwin Academy); Mfon Udoh (Akwa United). Reuben Bala (Enyimba FC); Tosin Omoyele (Plateau United); Sikiru Alimi (Lobi Stars); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Heartland FC).Tags: Adamu AbubakarIkechukwu EzenwaImama AmapakaboSparrow HawksSuper EaglesTheophilus Afelokhailast_img read more

Sars ready for Gaelic Grounds clash

first_imgTheir opponents Na Pairsaigh have beaten Sixmilebridge in the quarter final while Thurles defeated Nenagh in the county final in their last game.Their coach Paddy McCormack told Tipp FM  they need to keep improving.Sarsfields go into the game as slight favourites but will need to be at their best to beat a Na Pairsaigh team that defeated Sixmilebridge in the quarter final. Tipp minor boss Liam Cahill says the county champions Sars can’t afford to look past tomorrows game.Tipp FM will have full live coverage of the Sarsfields v Na Pairsaigh game from the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick at 2pm this Sunday in association with Liam Campion Quality meats, Mitchel Street, Thurles and  Young’s Roscrea Main Opel Dealerlast_img read more

Lakers’ Byron Scott downplays being one defeat away from tying last year’s loss total

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Scott envisioned the Lakers ranking at least 15th in total defense after they finished 29th out of 30 NBA teams last season in points allowed (109.2), 24th in defensive field goal percentage (46.8) and 30th in fast-break points allowed (16.7). But the Lakers experienced only a slight improvement. They currently rank 28th in total defense (104.8), 28th in defensive field goal percentage (46.3) and 26th in fast break points allowed (14.7).Both Lakers forwards Wesley Johnson and Jordan Hill said Scott spent more time teaching defense than D’Antoni. They also credit Scott holding players more accountable. “Byron is all about the defense. If he doesn’t see any improvement in that, he’s going to pull you out,” Hill said. “Mike is an offensive coach. He knows his stuff on offense. We did defensive stuff. But he just wants the ball to get into the basket.”That perhaps explains why last year’s team boded better offensively. It finished 11th in total offense (103 points), 14th in field-goal percentage (45.0) and third in 3-point shooting (38.4). Scott’s more deliberate offense ranks 17th overall (98.8 points), 25th in field-goal percentage (43.6) and 18th in 3-point shooting (34.1). Scott noted he installed more basic schemes than he had on other teams, knowing he does not have a high-caliber point guard as he did in New Jersey (Jason Kidd) and New Orleans (Chris Paul). Last year’s Lakers also suffered double-digit blowouts in 32 games, while this year’s team has lost by such margins 23 times. “We’re moving in the right direction,” Kelly said. “Obviously there was a level of turmoil this year when Kobe was down again and he’s a big part of what we’re doing and we have to find yourself all over again as a team. But I think guys have continued to compete.” The circumstances vary from each player on both teams.Hill enjoyed career-highs this season in points (12.3) and rebounds (8.2), noting he feels more comfortable as a mid-range shooter under Scott. But Kelly has experienced a decrease in points (8.0, 5.6) and shooting percentage (42.3, 33) partly because he has played at times at small forward instead of his natural position at power forward. Johnson notched a career-high in points this season (9.7) and prefers Scott playing him at small forward over D’Antoni featuring him at power forward. But Lakers forward Nick Young has shot a career-low 36.6 percent and occasionally clashed with Scott over playing time before his knee injury that sidelined him for the past month. “It’s been so negative this year,” Young said. “There’s no joy and fun.” But most player accounts align with Scott’s. They argue the numerous injuries and new personnel make any comparisons to last year’s team unfair. “My biggest thing is, ‘Did we improve?’” Scott said. “On both ends of the floor I think we did. To me that’s the most important thing.”Injury updateLakers guard Wayne Ellington will sit out the remainder of the 2014-15 season after an MRI showed a grade 1 right shoulder separation. The proud Laker gushed about how “this organization is all about championships.” He called the roster “very competitive.” On the Lakers’ rebuilding timeline, he maintained “I don’t see this as a long process.”But nearly eight months after his introductory press conference as the Lakers’ coach, Byron Scott has witnessed something foreign to when he won three NBA championships during the “Showtime Era.” The Lakers (20-54) enter Friday’s game against the Portland Trail Blazers (48-26) at Staples Center only one defeat away from tying last season’s loss total. That group went 27-55, which both matched the Lakers’ worst record in L.A. franchise history and fueled a disgruntled fanbase favoring Mike D’Antoni’s resignation.“I’m not looking at what last year’s team did,” Scott said. “It’s unfair to this team to look at what the team did last year.”center_img Scott admitted the development “gives me more incentive” in accelerating the Lakers’ rebuilding process in the three years left on his contract following the 2014-15 campaign. But Scott quickly pointed out the Lakers’ different personnel.From last year’s team, the Lakers lost an elite post player (Pau Gasol), a worthy backup (Chris Kaman), a dependable outside shooter (Jodie Meeks) and two reliable playmakers (Steve Blake, Jordan Farmar). That squad also featured players missing a combined 319 games due to injuries, the most notable to Kobe Bryant (six games) and Steve Nash (15 games). This season’s Lakers featured five season-ending injuries to Bryant (35 games), Nash (zero games) Julius Randle (one game), Ronnie Price (43 games) and Xavier Henry (nine games).Yet, Scott remained adamant the team has improved.“From a defensive standpoint, we’ve made some big-time improvements,” Scott said. “We’ve gotten better offensively.”The numbers present a more nuanced picture. last_img read more