Vidic accepts United questioning

first_imgManchester United skipper Nemanja Vidic has accepted questions are being asked of the club as they prepare to begin their Premier League title defence. They made the best possible start by winning the Community Shield against Wigan on Sunday, but Vidic knows the questions will keep coming. “People are questioning everyone,” he said. “People are asking whether we can win the trophy again. Can we still be champions? “That is not just about the manager, it is the players as well. Can the players perform the same way as they did before? “We are trying hard to show what we can do. We have a good work ethic to start with and everyone wants to put themselves back into contention. “Most importantly, I see the hunger. I am pleased with that because we will definitely need it if we are going to achieve what we want this season.” With his own international career at an end, Vidic is in a minority of players who will be able to train at full throttle at United’s rebranded Aon Training Complex this week. Moyes was set to lose eight players to England seniors duty alone until Ashley Young withdrew from the friendly against Scotland due to an ankle injury that threatens his participation in Saturday’s opener at Swansea. Full-back Rafael would have missed out through suspension anyway, but is now facing at least four weeks on the sidelines with a hamstring injury suffered during the first-half at Wembley on Sunday. Press Association Whilst it was always obvious the arrival of David Moyes in place of Sir Alex Ferguson would bring a sense of weakness to Old Trafford, Vidic does not believe it is just a new manager that is bringing increased scrutiny. For the Serbian accepts his team-mates also need to prove they can reach the levels of previous seasons without the spectre of Ferguson looming over them. They are both blows for Moyes, who will want as many options as possible available to him for the encounter at the Liberty Stadium. That game will be followed by matches against Chelsea and Liverpool, with a trip to Manchester City following not long afterwards, which raised an eyebrow from Moyes, who wondered whether someone at the Premier League was having fun at his expense. Certainly Vidic has known nothing like it. “It is the toughest start we have had since I have been here,” he said. “Obviously the first game is always important, especially when it is away. Swansea will be a tough place to go. They have some new signings. “But I am looking forward to it. The players want to play big matches. They want to play hard matches. “When you play for Manchester United you have to accept that challenge and be ready. You have to win every game.” It will be a welcome relief to Moyes that Vidic has recovered from the sciatica problem that prevented him flying out on United’s epic tour of Australia and the Far East, where so much of their fitness work was undertaken. “I did train with the reserves in England, so I had a pre-season,” he said. “It was just that I didn’t have as many matches as the other players. But I have played two full 90 minutes now. “I am feeling fit and as the season goes along and we have more games I will get better and better. But that is the same for every player. At the moment I feel really good and I am looking forward to the new season.” last_img read more

Clyne rescues point for Saints

first_img Clark’s long clearance should have been easily dealt with but Forster rushed out with Fonte struggling – only for Agbonlahor to beat him to the ball and fire into the empty net. It came against the run of play but, tails up, Villa had breached the Southampton backline for the first time in seven-and-a-half hours. At the other end, the Saints were yet to seriously test Guzan until he tipped Sadio Mane’s curling effort around the post on 37 minutes. Fonte then headed straight at the American as the visitors threatened to get out of second gear before the break. They were almost 2-0 behind two minutes into the second half, though, when Ryan Bertrand hacked Charles N’Zogbia’s goalbound effort away. Villa Park remained muted a combination of nerves and dimmed enthusiasm. In their last home game Villa conceded twice in the final 10 minutes to lose 2-1 to Tottenham and nerves were justified. But Southampton’s decision-making remained poor, their final ball loose as Villa continued to deny them. Both goalkeepers remained untroubled, even when Fonte’s cross flashed across the Villa box with Graziano Pelle lurking. Weimann then wasted a golden chance to make the game safe with 12 minutes left when he broke from Southampton’s corner. The Austrian found Agbonlahor and when he received the return pass, could only blaze over from 12 yards. And Villa paid the price when the Saints’ levelled with nine minutes remaining. Bertrand got the better of Weimann and his left-wing cross was brilliantly dispatched by the on-rushing Clyne from 16-yards. They dominated possession but failed to regularly test goalkeeper Brad Guzan while Villa were left to rue Andi Weimann’s glaring miss at 1-0. The point did at least lift Villa, who are without a win in eight games, up to 16th in the Barclays Premier League while Southampton stay second. The draw marked Paul Lambert’s 100th game in charge of Villa and he recalled Ciaran Clark and Jores Okore – Villa’s only two fit centre-backs – with Okore making his first appearance since suffering a serious knee injury in September 2013. Alan Hutton was back after an ankle problem while Shane Long replaced the injured Steven Davis, out with a hamstring issue, in the Saints’ only change. A subdued Villa Park was rarely woken from its slumber in the opening 20 minutes, aside from seeing Victor Wanyama sweep over from 18-yards and Clark producing a fine tackle to halt Long. Villa were reliant on Agbonlahor’s pace, which worried Southampton, and the forward earned a free kick after being tripped by Jose Fonte but Ashley Westwood wasted the chance. But the striker’s efforts paid off on 29 minutes when Villa opened the scoring. Lambert had joked he hoped his one-time Norwich loanee Forster would have a nightmare and the keeper obliged with a gift for Agbonlahor. Press Association Nathaniel Clyne rescued a point for Southampton as they were held to a 1-1 draw at Aston Villa. The England defender smashed in a late leveller just as Villa were ready to clinch a first win in eight games. Fraser Forster’s clanger had gifted Gabby Agbonlahor the opener with the Saints rarely at their fluid best. last_img read more

Dhoni slots ‘finishing’ as hardest cricketing role

first_img(ESPNCricinfo) – Ahead of India’s home ODIs against New Zealand, captain MS Dhoni has said it is difficult to find players to slot into a finisher’s role. The nature of cricket in the subcontinent, he said, meant lower-order batsmen had few opportunities to get used to the pressure of finishing games.“You talked about [the examples of Jos] Buttler and [Glenn] Maxwell. You have to see consistent performances,” he said. “It [finishing] is one of the most difficult things to do in cricket. It’s not about six months or one year. You have to be used to that role and responsibility, and you have to have that self-confidence to keep on doing what is required of you, usually over a period. Once you find a good finisher, they are the ones that will keep batting at that slot for 8-10 years.“I think one of the biggest challenge is that the cricket that we play in the subcontinent, more often than not, a finisher is someone who bats at 5, 6 7, to some extent, maybe No. 4. A lot of times in India, the lower-order doesn’t get a chance to bat.Dhoni himself had made his reputation as a finisher but, with his striking power having dimmed over the last few years, he has indicated a preference for batting higher up the order; his reasoning is he can hold the innings together before hitting out in the end, while the batsman coming in at numbers 7 or 8 could go for the big hits from the start. He said the team management had identified a few players for the finisher’s spot, but refused to divulge their names so as to not put pressure on them.“It becomes more and more difficult for a youngster to come in and fill in that place. The reason being he may not get an opportunity, but you start counting opportunities – say if we are four or five down for 40 runs, it’ll be counted as a big opportunity by you. In 15-20 games, [the youngster] gets an opportunity like that and you expect the youngster to do well, score a 100-150; you say” ‘That was a perfect opportunity in front of you.’”Dhoni is averse to using the word “experimentation”, but with India having only eight ODIs to play before the 2017 Champions Trophy in England, he admitted to there being pressure to identify the best combination of players in a short span of time.“Quite a few of them would have gone to Zimbabwe. All of a sudden, 14 or 15 were there and then a few injuries here and there… It’s not a realistic number but at the same time, there are a few individuals who we are very keen to see what they have on offer.last_img read more

Beat the Bruins

first_imgChildish Gambino, the rapper persona of Community star Donald Glover, performs at Conquest, an annual spirit rally held in McCarthy Quad. The Thursday pep rally, traditionally held before the USC-UCLA football game, featured a fireworks show, appearances by USC athletes, a Bruin bonfire and performances by the USC marching band.Razan Al Marzouqi | Daily Trojanlast_img

DPS releases annual security and fire report

first_imgThe Dept. of Public Safety released the Annual Security and Fire Report on Tuesday, which contained crime statistics for the past three years and outlined crime and safety policies for all USC campuses.Colleges and universities that participate in federal aid programs are required to publish crime reports under the Clery Act of 1990.The data indicates a decline in burglaries and robberies between 2011 and 2013 but shows an increase in forcible sexual assaults over the same period. Burglaries fell from 83 cases in 2011 to 28 in 2013 and robberies dropped from 34 cases to 17. Forcible sexual offenses increased from 24 cases to 33 over the same period. Disciplinary referrals for liquor law violations more than doubled from 200 cases in 2011 to 563 cases in 2013.Vice Provost for Student Affairs Ainsley Carry said that the increase in reported sexual offenses is expected as the university has taken steps to make the process of reporting such crimes easier and more accessible.“We’ve created a culture and environment where people should feel safe reporting [sexual assault],” Carry said. “We know that our numbers should increase.”Carry said that he expects the numbers to decrease as the university continues implementing cultural and educational programs aimed at reducing sexual violence on campus.The report breaks down the crime statistics for the University Park campus into four geographic zones: on-campus, student housing, public property and non-campus. Public property includes streets, sidewalks and parking facilities, while non-campus includes off-campus student housing and other university buildings outside campus boundaries. Crimes reported directly to LAPD are also included in a separate category.last_img read more

Tyus Battle ends slump with 23 points in Syracuse’s win over Morehead State

first_img Published on November 10, 2018 at 10:54 pm Contact Billy: | @Wheyen3 Tyus Battle pulled up from about 15 feet on the left wing with 5:20 to go Saturday. He’d made 3-of-4 shots already in the second half. He’d already surpassed his scoring total from Syracuse’s first game when he shot 30 percent. And on this particular shot, he swished it.After his feet hit the ground, Battle bobbed his head and put a small scowl on his face. The Carrier Dome roared as SU’s leading scorer from a year ago showed he was back.“Droughts happen,” Battle said. “I wasn’t worried about it. Once I got to see one go in, I knew I was fine.”Battle scored an SU-high 23 points on Saturday night in the Carrier Dome, as the No. 16 Orange (2-0) held off Morehead State (1-2), 84-70. He finished 7-for-15 from the field and 9-for-10 from the foul line as he again spent much of the game as Syracuse’s de facto point guard. After a 3-for-10 opening night, and a poor first half, Battle dropped 18 in the second half to help the Orange pull away from a persistent Eagles team.“He can score anywhere,” SU head coach Jim Boeheim said. “Doesn’t matter where he is.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textBattle wasn’t available to speak to the media after Tuesday’s season-opener. He was out on the Carrier Dome floor, getting shots up. Saturday, he said he “always wants to get shots up,” and he just wanted to solve whatever felt “a little off” in his shot.At first, it looked like those extra shots may not have done Battle any good. He got swatted on his first shot attempt Saturday as he attacked the basket. He missed a left-block fadeaway, short. He missed at the rim, again. He missed a jumper, again. Altogether, he missed his first six shots.But then, Battle pulled up from the right elbow and swished. About a minute later, he spun toward the right baseline, pulled up, and hit again. Although he missed a floater with time winding down, Battle had seen the ball go through the basket.“Just to see those go in at the end of the half, I think really gave me momentum for the second half,” Battle said.With Frank Howard still absent due to injury, Battle’s been forced to play point guard. He felt that may have contributed to his lack of aggression in SU’s exhibitions and its season opener. But he started to change that in Saturday’s first half, even when shots weren’t falling.In the second half, the aggression began to pay off. Battle attacked the rim for two layups while being fouled, along with another bucket that came off a post up on the left block.“I was trying to be aggressive in the first half and I was trying to be aggressive in the second half,” Battle said. “Only thing that changed was I guess I made a couple more shots.”Battle continued to drive to the hoop to get to the foul line, where he was 8-for-8 in the second half. In addition to the two and-1s, three separate slashes into the lane sent Battle to the line, where each time he made his pair.“Even foul shots when you see the ball go in, it makes things a lot easier,” Battle said. “Especially when you’re looking to score the ball.”Morehead State didn’t want to go away, as the Eagles brought their deficit back to 10 points on a number of occasions late in the second half. But in the closing moments, the game was finally in hand for Syracuse.The moment against Eastern Washington when the game felt in control came much earlier. Then, on his final shot of the night, Battle broke away with 4:12 to go, and he tomahawked a dunk. When he landed, he frowned.This time, it wasn’t until the game’s final minute that the Orange’s lead wasn’t in doubt. Battle beat his man going left and sliced down the center of the lane. No defenders came to help. Battle rose up and flushed it home with two hands. He didn’t show emotion right in that moment. But afterward, Oshae Brissett said, the Orange saw their junior leader smile.“We’re all excited for him,” Brissett said. “We like seeing our guys come out of their slumps. We’re all in this together, really. We don’t want to see any of our guys down. Seeing him like that, seeing him happy, even after the game, seeing him smile after the game, really lifts us all up.” Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Today’s Local GAA Fixtures

first_imgCounty Minor A Football Final: Clonmel Commercials v Galtee Rovers/St Pecaun (4, Cahir)County Intermediate Hurling Relegation Replay: Ballybacon/Grange v Cahir (4, Clonmel)North Junior A Hurling Final: Kildangan v Nenagh Éire Óg (4;30, Templederry)South Junior B Hurling Quarter-Final: Mullinahone v Marlfield (4;30, Fethard)North Junior Football: Ballina v Shannon Rovers (5, Cloughjordan), Inane Rovers v Lorrha (6, Lorrha) South Junior A Football Semi-Final: Newcastle v Ballingarry (5, Ned Hall Park)West Junior A Football Group 2 Semi-Final: Emly v Rosegreen (6, Golden) West Junior A Football Group 2 Semi-Final Replay: Sean Treacy’s v Solohead (6, Cappawhite)West Junior Football: Éire Óg Anacarty/Donohill v Cashel King Cormacs (6:15, Bansha)Mid Senior Football Semi-Final: Loughmore-Castleiney v JK Brackens (6:30, Templetuohy) County Minor B Football Final: Golden-Kilfeacle v Kilsheelan-Kilcash (2:30, Cahir)South Junior B Hurling Quarter-Final: Carrick Swan v St. Patrick’s (3, Fethard)County Ladies Junior D Football Final: Lattin Cullen v Thurles Gaels (3, Leahy Park)last_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

Cork unhappy with Bennett red card

first_imgPhoto © Pixabay Cork City manager John Caufield says Alan Bennett should not have been sent off in last nights EA Sports cup semi final against Shamrock Rovers in Tallaght.Bennett received a red card towards the end of the first half after getting involved in an off the ball incident.City kept the game scoreless until the dying minutes of extra time when 19 year old James Doona scored a deflected goal to send the Hoops through.last_img

In a first, sportspersons receive national honours virtually

first_img Press Trust Of India First Published: 29th August, 2020 13:59 IST Last Updated: 29th August, 2020 13:59 IST In A First, Sportspersons Receive National Honours Virtually India’s sporting heroes were bestowed the annual national awards in an unparalleled online ceremony amid the COVID-19 pandemic during which athletes logged in from multiple cities to be honoured by President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday SUBSCRIBE TO US Written By COMMENTcenter_img LIVE TV India’s sporting heroes were bestowed the annual national awards in an unparalleled online ceremony amid the COVID-19 pandemic during which athletes logged in from multiple cities to be honoured by President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday.This year a whopping 74 winners were picked for the national honours, including an unprecedented five Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratnas and 27 Arjuna awardees. Of these, 60 attended the virtual ceremony conducted across 11 Sports Authority of India (SAI) centres in various cities.Cricketers Rohit Sharma (Khel Ratna) and Ishant Sharma (Arjuna) missed out due to their IPL commitments in the UAE, while star wrestler Vinesh Phogat (Khel Ratna) and badminton player Satwiksairaj Rankireddy (Arjuna) had to pull out of the ceremony after testing positive for the dreaded virus.The other three Khel Ratna winners — TT player Manika Batra, Paralympic gold-medallist Mariyappan Thangavelu and women’s hockey captain Rani Rampal — attended the ceremony.While Batra logged in from Pune, Thangavelu and Rampal joined from Bengaluru.President Kovind applauded as names of the attending awardees were called out and their achievements were cited as is the convention. Missing, however, was the grandeur of the Rashtrapati Bhavan’s Durbar Hall.”This is the first awards ceremony in COVID times during which the President has participated,” Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju said at the beginning of the ceremony.The athletes can look forward to enhanced cash awards this year. The prize money for the Khel Ratna was increased to Rs 25 lakh from the previous amount of Rs 7.5 lakh this morning.Arjuna awardees, 22 of who attended the ceremony, were given Rs 15 lakh, which is Rs 10 lakh more than the previous sum.The Dhronacharya (Lifetime) awardees, who were earlier given Rs 5 lakh, were awarded Rs 15 lakh, while the regular Dhronacharya came with Rs 10 lakh instead of Rs 5 lakh per awardee.Dhyanchand Awardees were given Rs 10 lakh instead of Rs 5 lakh.The strict COVID-19 protocol meant that for the first time in 44 years’ history of the awards, the winners, guests and dignitaries did not gather at the Durbar Hall to be recognised for their excellence.President Kovind congratulated all the winners and exuded confidence that India can achieve its goal of finishing among top-10 countries in the 2028 Paris Olympics.”My heartiest congratulations to all the award winners! All of you, through your performance, have provided unforgettable moments of collective success to all Indians,” Kovind said in his address during the ceremony, which lasted little more than hour.”I am confident that with the collective efforts made on the strength of everyone’s participation, India will emerge as a sporting superpower.”Our goal is to be in the top-10 podium finisher countries in the 2028 Olympic Games. We will definitely achieve this goal.” Kovind said India needs to develop a sporting culture and everyone should work towards achieving that.He said the entire sporting world has been affected by the pandemic, but hoped athletes will come out stronger from this experience.”COVID-19 also has a huge impact on the sports world. Olympic Games have been postponed…In our country too, all sports activities have been affected. Players and coaches may be less motivated by practice and competition stops,” he said.”I believe that the people of sports will come out of this test with more mental strength and will create new history of achievements.” The top Arjuna awardees this year included star sprinter Dutee Chand, woman cricketer Deepti Sharma, golfer Aditi Ashok and men’s hockey team striker Akashdeep Singh.The Dronacharya award in the life-time category was bestowed on eight coaches, the prominent among them being archery coach Dharmendra Tiwary, Naresh Kumar (tennis), Shiv Singh (boxing) and Romesh Pathania (hockey).In regular category, there were five recipients of the Dronacharya, including hockey coach Jude Felix and shooting coach Jaspal Rana among others.In a tragic turn of events of Friday, a Dronacharya (Lifetime) winner, athletics coach Purushottam Rai, died in Bengaluru after suffering a heart attack.The Dhyan Chand award this year was given to 15 individuals, including Sukhvinder Singh Sandhu (football), Trupti Murgunde (badminton) and Nandan Bal (tennis) among others.Golfer Aditi Ashok and former footballer Sukhwinder Singh Sandhu did not attend the award function as they are out of the country.All health and safety protocols, keeping with the guidelines of the Health Ministry, were followed at the venues where dignitaries and awardees were present.In fact, awardees were seen clad in PPE kits as they made their way to the ceremony venues.As per the direction of the Sports Ministry, every award winner had to undergo a COVID-19 test before reporting to the ceremony venue.Image credits: SAIMedia / Twitter WATCH US LIVE FOLLOW USlast_img read more