China virus death toll nears 1,500 but new cases fall

first_imgMore than 64,600 people have now been infected in the country.Health officials in Hubei said they started to count clinically diagnosed cases to ensure that patients get treated as early as possible instead of having to wait for laboratory tests to confirm they have the COVID-19 disease.But the change raised concerns that the crisis may be more serious than Chinese authorities have reported.Topics : The death toll from China’s coronavirus epidemic rose to 1,483 on Friday but the number of new infections in hard-hit Hubei province fell after a change in case definitions caused a massive increase the previous day.The central province’s health commission reported 116 more deaths and 4,823 new cases, the majority involving “clinically diagnosed” patients.The province, the epicentre of the outbreak, had 242 more deaths and over 14,800 new cases on Thursday.last_img read more

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Indonesia targets local COVID-19 strain in Eijkman-led 2022 vaccine initiative

first_imgVaccines typically require 10-15 years to develop through several stages, including clinical trials and licensing for national immunization programs, according to the United States’ CDC.Eijkman will send any prototype seed viruses it produces – the “seed stock” needed to manufacture vaccines, also called candidate vaccine virus (CVV) – to Bio Farma, the country’s sole vaccine manufacturer, for accelerated clinical trials on human volunteers. According to the plan, Bio Farma aims to mass-produce the vaccine by 2022.This was much faster than the typical five to 12 years needed for vaccine development, said Bio Farma R&D manager Neni Nurainy.Challenges ahead Indonesia is looking to fast-track the local development of a COVID-19 vaccine, but concerns remain as to whether insufficient funding and facilities, as well as the country’s reliance on imported materials, might hinder the initiative.The government has appointed the Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology to spearhead the vaccine development program through a consortium that includes the Health Ministry’s Research and Development Agency (Balitbangkes), state-owned pharmaceutical company PT Bio Farma and several universities.The institute has been given a time frame of just 12 months starting in April, Eijkman director Amin Soebandrio told The Jakarta Post on Sunday. Amin said that the target was not impossible, but that the accelerated process would have its own share of challenges, particularly in terms of facilities and funding.Eijkman has received Rp 5 billion (US$329,989) for the exploratory stage of vaccine development. The sum is part of Rp 90 billion in total funding that the Research and Technology Ministry has budgeted for the consortium’s COVID-19 studies.”If we count everything, [the fund] might not be enough, but we can make use of existing resources and [testing] kits. We are not starting from zero,” Amin said.Research and Technology Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro said that the funding for Eijkman “will be added to as necessary”. He was also well aware that Bio Farma would require large funds to manufacture the vaccine to provide coverage for the country’s 260 million people.Another challenge, Amin said, was that Indonesia still needed to import reagents for the COVID-19 tests at a time when the pandemic had disrupted the global supply chain.Bio Farma’s Neni expressed the same concerns. “There must be support from all parties to accelerate [vaccine] development, [including] funding, raw material procurement, regulations and capable researchers,” she said.Exploratory stageAs coronaviruses mutate easily during replication to adapt to its host, the vaccines developed in other countries might not be viable against the strain in Indonesia, Amin explained.Eijkman’s laboratory has been conducting whole genome sequencing to determine the complete RNA sequence of the SARS-CoV-2 strain in Indonesia. This is part of the initial stage of vaccine development.Scientists will then be able to detect the antigen of the Indonesian strain and identify the strains in other countries that share the closest genetic traits. In other words, the scientists will trace the chain of transmission of the Indonesian strain.Given Indonesia’s vast archipelagic geography, Amin said that the Eijkman lab would need to collect samples from several regions, which would be a challenge in itself. This would ensure, however, that the CVV it prepared would be suitable for mass-producing a vaccine for immunizing people across the country.”That’s why we have to make [the vaccine] specific [to the Indonesian strain],” he stressed. “Although we can identify the parts of the virus that don’t [mutate], the antigen that is discovered might not be good enough for developing into a vaccine.”Many institutions around the world have been sharing their genome sequences of local coronavirus strains with global databases such as GISAID and Nextstrain.Eijkman on Monday submitted its first three complete genome sequences of the Indonesian strain to GISAID. This was the first submission from Indonesia, although the Health Ministry’s lab announced that it was also sequencing the virus early in the outbreak.Aside from developing a vaccine, genome sequencing can also help with contact tracing. Amin said that the lab was still analyzing the possible origin of the virus strain in Indonesia.Once the antigen is detected, the Eijkman lab will formulate a vaccine prototype for animal testing with other members in the consortium.Bio Farma’s roleFollowing successful animal testing, the vaccine seed will then be given to Bio Farma for clinical trials. If the vaccine seed passes the clinical trials, the company will start mass-producing the vaccine.Neni said it was too early to estimate the amount of vaccine the company would be able to produce by then.While clinical trials generally took years, said Neni, the final two phases of  the clinical trial could be run in parallel to cut time during a health emergency.Once the safety and efficacy of the vaccine had been proven, the vaccine could be approved for mass distribution under supervision of the Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM).Solidary Trial, other optionsWhile there is still a long way to go until a vaccine is available in the country, 22 Indonesian hospitals have joined the World Health Organization (WHO) Solidarity Trial that coordinates clinical trials for potential antiviral treatments.The program is running comparative trials on four possible treatments: remdesivir, lopinavir and ritonavir, a combined treatment of lopinavir-ritonavir with interferon beta-1a, and chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine.The WHO and the Health Ministry is providing the untested drug treatments to the enrolled hospitals. The ministry has supplied the treatments to at least eight hospitals by April 23, five of which were ready to recruit volunteers and start randomized clinical trials.Jakarta’s Persahabatan Central General Hospital is among the 22 Solidarity Trial hospitals in Indonesia.Spokesperson Erlina Burhan said that the hospital had yet to receive the treatments and was still preparing for running the trials. She said that the hospital had been treating COVID-19 patients according to a protocol created by medical organizations.A copy of the protocol that the Post obtained suggests the use of several drugs for COVID-19 treatment: the antimalarials chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine, the  antiviral oseltamivir (Tamiflu) that has been used to treat bird flu and the experimental antiviral favipiravir (Avigan) that has been used to treat Ebola patients.Indonesian researchers are also looking at other alternative therapies, including the use of convalescent plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients for treating current patients that have developed a severe form of the disease.Topics :last_img read more

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Governor Wolf Announces Four Airports to Expand, Rehabilitate Facilities with State Multimodal Investments

first_img Infrastructure,  Press Release,  Results,  Transportation Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf announced today that four airports will make facility upgrades as well as promote services and establish new educational opportunities with the assistance of $5.8 million in state investments.“Investments in our state’s airports support the hundreds of thousands of jobs they sustain while enhancing communities’ economic competitiveness” Governor Wolf said. “These projects will improve these airports’ operations and safety as well as educational opportunities for future aviation leaders.”The investments are funded by the state Multimodal Fund, which was created by Act 89, Pennsylvania’s far-reaching transportation funding plan. The fund established dedicated investments in transit, aviation, rail freight and pedestrian and bicycle modes, in addition to increasing highway and bridge funding.Following is a by-county list of approved aviation projects:Allegheny County: Pittsburgh International Airport — $2.4 million to leverage Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) funds to rehabilitate runways and airfield pavement joints, as well as market air service to Pittsburgh from Altoona, Bradford, DuBois, Franklin, Johnstown, and Lancaster airports.Cambria County: John Murtha Johnstown-Cambria County Airport — $1.9 million to support the development of a Business Aviation Management Degree Program with St. Francis University, including: upgrading and enhancing an existing airport facility; purchasing a flight simulator for the degree; assisting with the first five students’ tuition/room and board; and marketing the new program.Philadelphia County: Philadelphia International Airport — $800,000 to leverage FAA funds to extend a runway.Westmoreland County: Arnold Palmer Regional Airport — $805,000 to rehabilitate an apron.For more information on aviation in Pennsylvania visit www.penndot.gov. More information on the multimodal program is available on the website under “Projects & Programs.”Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolf Governor Wolf Announces Four Airports to Expand, Rehabilitate Facilities with State Multimodal Investments February 23, 2017center_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

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Asset managers side too often with corporate management – study

first_imgSome of the UK’s largest asset managers have come in for criticism after a report alleged the industry often sided with company management when voting on controversial shareholder resolutions.ShareAction, a responsible investment charity, also said regulators in the UK should be more forceful ensuring compliance with the country’s Stewardship Code among signatories, as several of the asset managers surveyed failed to disclose their voting record.The charity’s report examined the voting records of AGMs from 2014 where more than 30% of shareholders voted against management, with the votes largely concerned with board appointments and remuneration.It argued that there was often a disconnect between the voting behaviour of asset managers and its stance outlined in public voting policies. ShareAction chief executive Catherine Howarth criticised that many firms were failing to take their stewardship responsibilities seriously.“While the detail of any one vote may not be indicative of an approach, there does seem to be a pattern for some managers across the votes we looked at with significant shareholder dissent. “We expect investors will be asking tough questions of their asset managers, particularly those who appear to be simply backing management most of the time, based on this report.”It praised Aviva Investors, F&C Investments, Newton Investment Management, Royal London Asset Management and Standard Life Investments as the five most transparent companies of the 33 surveyed.Aviva Investors was also one of four praised for most consistently opposing management – alongside Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Threadneedle Asset Management and AllianceBernstein.Aberdeen Asset Management, BlackRock, HSBC Global Asset Management, Schroders Investment Management, Hermes Investment Management and M&G Investment Management were the asset managers identified as most likely to side with management.Saker Nusseibeh, chief executive at Hermes IM, said his company’s approach to engagement was about achieving “beneficial change”, as opposed to mounting a campaign or “box tick”.“We take a graduated approach and base our decisions on annual report disclosures, discussions with the company and independent analysis,” he said.“At larger companies or those where clients have a significant stake, we seek to have dialogue ahead of voting against or abstaining on any resolution. We vote accordingly and as part of a constructive discussion with the company’s board.”ShareAction’s report also urged a more consistent approach in disclosing the rationale behind a vote, noting that some asset managers took the time to explain why they voted with or against management, while others only explain a vote against a company.It also said a large number of asset managers declined to disclose voting rationale publicly, as it hindered engagement efforts – an argument the charity dismissed as “unconvincing”.“[Twenty four] of the 33 managers included in this study did not disclose any information on their voting rationales, and the level of disclosure of the remaining nine varied significantly,” ShareAction said.“There is room for significant improvement in the disclosure of voting rationales by asset managers, and this is critical to achieving real accountability by an industry that invests other people’s money.”The report also suggested that the Financial Reporting Council, the regulator behind the Stewardship Code, and the Financial Conduct Authority be more proactive in enforcing the Code’s principles – for example, in instances where signatories failed to publish voting records.“It is clear current regulation is not leading to the level of disclosure that is desirable in the market,” it said. “We suggest the Stewardship Code needs to be revisited in light of these failings and that some mechanism is needed to prevent managers claiming to comply with the Code when they do not.”,WebsitesWe are not responsible for the content of external sitesLink to ShareAction reportlast_img read more

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How real estate careers helped Millie Bobby Brown and David Harbour

first_img Inside Ellen’s $34m beachfront compound Rugby star’s dream home revealed This is what US$2.475 million will buy you in Armonk, New York today. Picture: Supplied.Millie Bobby Brown’s dad, Robert Brown, was also a real estate agent, before the family moved from their Bournemouth, Dorset home in England to America to support their daughter’s acting career. The cast of Stranger Things, also starring Winona Ryder, on the red carpet in California for the world premiere of season 3. Picture: Chris Delmas/AFP.For David Harbour, it has been the most high profile role in a solid 20-year acting career which was reportedly inspired by seeing Kenneth Branagh’s Henry V as a Year 8 student.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus12 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market12 hours agoUS actor David Harbour attending Netflix’s Stranger Things 3 premiere at Santa Monica High School, California on June 28, 2019. Picture: Chris Delmas/AFP.Supporting him through school were his real estate agent parents, Kenneth and Nancy Harbour, with his mum focusing on residential property and his father on commercial sales. David Harbour, who plays Sheriff Hopper, grew up in a family of real estate agents working in New York.While Millie Bobby Brown’s dad was a Dorset real estate agent in England before selling up to move the family to America in support of his daughter’s emerging acting career which has resulted in her lead role as Eleven. This is what US$525,000 will buy you in White Plains, New York. This city is where David Harbour grew up with his real estate agent parents. Picture: Supplied.Their original stomping ground of White Plains, New York was ranked third in the top 10 places to live in New York by online real estate brokerage Movoto in 2016. His parents have since moved their home and business to Armonk, New York, the headquarters of IBM worldwide. MORE: Gargantuan 123-room mega mansion sets record Sadie Sink, Noah Schnapp, Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard and Caleb McLaughlin in a scene from season three of Stranger Things. Picture: Supplied by Netflix.The 1980s-inspired Netflix thriller Stranger Things premiered in 2016, turning unknown actors into instant stars and bringing established careers back into the spotlight.The series tells the story of the small (fictional) country town of Hawkins, Indiana in the grip of a supernatural incursion.center_img Bournemouth real estate agents in the UK are selling homes like this one at Talbot Hill Rd, Talbot Park, for $1 million (575,000 pounds). Millie Bobby Brown lived in Bournemouth from the age of four until the family moved to America four years later. Picture: Supplied.The move was a risk that paid off when Netflix offered Millie Bobby Brown the role of Eleven in Stranger Things at the age of 12.Something else Millie Bobby Brown and David Harbour have in common is their salary. David Harbour and Millie Bobby Brown speak about the Stranger Things series in Los Angeles last year. Picture: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.WE’VE followed them to the upside down and back, but David Harbour and Millie Bobby Brown have more in common then their Stranger Things characters could ever imagine.With the release of a new season of the thriller series on Netflix, it can be revealed that in real life both actors come from real estate families. MORE: Two signs the market is in better shape Would you pay $3 million for this? The Stranger Things Season 3 world premiere party at Santa Monica, California last month ahead of the worldwide release on July 4. Picture: Charley Gallay/Getty Images.While you’re binge watching Stranger Things season three this week, it might be interesting to note that both stars were paid $500,000 an episode.That’s more than the sales commission Australia’s elite real estate agents would see in a year. >>>FOLLOW THE COURIER-MAIL REAL ESTATE TEAM ON FACEBOOK<<< Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:58Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:58 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD432p432p216p216p180p180pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenHow much do I need to retire?00:58last_img read more

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As predicted – NZ Herald now continuing the push for Polyamory

first_imgI live in a threesome: Here’s how it worksNZ Herald 12 October 2016Family First Comment: And so the campaign to normalise it continues – as we predicted. Once the definition of marriage is changed once, what stops it being defined further? First, gender. Next, numberAmong those of us who are polyamorous – meaning that we carry on committed relationships with multiple people – there is a lot of talk about jealousy. It’s regarded as an emotion for the weak and unenlightened.I must be seriously unenlightened then, because I am a jealous, territorial, alpha-kind of man. My husband, Alex, and I have been together for five years. Our boyfriend, Jon, has lived with us for the past two.For the most part we are happy. Like any relationship, we have our ups and our downs. Some days we are madly in love, other days we’d rather be left alone to watch TV, pay the bills and go about the normalcy of life.Our relationship allows us a lot of room to explore with other people, both sexually and emotionally. We try to be honest with one another – and we try our best not to hurt one another. Sometimes we succeed. Sometimes we don’t.I still get that kind of heart-pounding and burning sensation all over my body whenever I picture either of my men with someone else.READ MORE: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=11727377last_img read more

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Group struggling to keep Lopez Jaena’s memory alive

first_imgHe died of tuberculosis at age 39 onJan. 20, 1896 in Barcelona, Spain and was buried by the Sisters of Charity inan unmarked grave at the Cementerio Sud-Oeste. Sonza underscored the importance ofcelebrating Lopez Jaena Day. According to Sonza, then city mayorJose Espinosa III, during the 162nd birth anniversary of Lopez Jaena last year,committed P5 million to complete the shrine. But this did not materialize. Lopez Jaena was considered the “firstFilipino propagandist” in the struggle for freedom from Spain. Lujan is also the guest speaker. The foundation is hopeful that thecity government would help complete the shrine that will house the hero’smemorabilia. In Spain, Lopez Jaena founded andedited La Solidaridad, a newspaperthat aimed to galvanize Filipinos to into demanding independence. He also gavefiery, nationalistic speeches. There he met Rizal and del Pilar. For his patriotism, the least thatIlonggos could do is complete a shrine to ensure that Lopez Jaena’s legacylives on, according to the Dr. Graciano Lopez Jaena Foundation. Botod’s false piety “always had theVirgin and God on his lips no matter how unjust and underhanded his acts are.”He reaped the friars’ fury and thus left Jaro for Spain in 1879. “We are really hoping to complete theshrine during the term of Mayor Jerry Treñas,” said Sonza. ILOILO City – When he was in Spaincampaigning for Philippine independence, Ilonggo hero Dr. Graciano Lopez Jaenawas offered the editorship of a Spanish newspaper in New York. Believing that “the pen is mightierthan the sword,” Lopez Jaena personally conveyed his demand for freedom in aspeech before Spanish officials in Madrid, Spain on April 27, 1883. The shrine, the construction of whichstarted a few years ago on the lot on Fajardo Street where the hero was born,is only 40 percent complete, according to foundation chairman Demy Sonza, ahistorian, writer and former member of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Iloilo.center_img His reply to the offer: “My brain andmy pen belong to the Philippines and not to any foreign country.” NO HOME FOR A HERO. This lot on Fajardo Street, Jaro, Iloilo City was where Ilonggo hero Dr. Graciano Lopez Jaena was born 163 years ago. The foundation named in his honor is struggling to build a shrine that would house the hero’s memorabilia. What it has so far constructed are posts and steel roof trusses. Lopez Jaena was born on Dec. 18, 1856 and died on Jan. 20, 1896 in Barcelona, Spain. IAN PAUL CORDERO “Paraindi malipatan ang aton baganihan. Isa lang sya angnational hero nga halin sa Iloiloduring our struggle for independence from Spain,” said Sonza. Lopez Jaena wrote the satirical story“Fray Botod” which depicted a fat and lecherous priest. Historians regard him, along with Dr.Jose Rizal and Marcelo H. del Pilar, as the triumvirate of propagandists thatchallenged Spanish rule in the Philippines. Today is a public holiday in thissouthern city and Iloilo province by virtue of Republic Act 6155 honoring thebirth of Lopez Jaena who would have turned 163 years old. Lopez Jaena, born in Jaro districthere on Dec. 18, 1856, expressed his love for his country with these fewwords: “Philippines, I salute her with invocation of hope on my lips! Theblue sea is her mantle, the most beautiful sky of the world her crown, adornedby resplendent stars. Whoever has not seen her has not seen the loveliest spoton earth.” There will be a foot parade at 7 a.m.from Fajardo Street to the Jaro public plaza that was renamed Dr. GracianoLopez Jaena Park and where the hero had a statue. Unfortunately, the foundation isstruggling financially. After the flag-raising ceremony, MayorTreñas and Nereo Lujan, the resident historian of the Iloilo provincialcapitol, will offer a wreath. He did not live long enough to see thefruition of his efforts aimed at freeing the Motherland from colonial Spain./PNlast_img read more

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Kay takes Deery Brothers cash at Tipton again

first_imgJustin Kay won a fourth consecutive Deery Brothers Summer Series main event at Cedar County Raceway, and $2,000 on Saturday night. (Photo by Scott Swenson)By Mike McGuireTIPTON, Iowa (April 21) – Justin Kay continued his winning streak at Cedar County Raceway in Saturday’s 2018 Deery Brothers Summer Series opener. However, Kay needed nearly all the 50 laps of the IMCA Late Model tour main event to get the job done.“This is probably one of the tracks in the area I have some of the most laps on. It’s 25 miles from our shop and where I started 15 years ago in a 4-cylinder,” he said. “I just love that place.”Ryan Dolan jumped out to the early lead from the pole.As Dolan pulled away, the third-starting Kay and Andy Eckrich became locked in a fierce battle for second. The pair swapped the position several times before Terry Neal used the very bottom groove to work his way into second.Unfortunately, Neal’s race ended several laps later as he coasted into the infield.Kay finally managed to shake Eckrich with 10 laps to go and started to chase down the leader. He drove around Dolan with five laps to go but the yellow flag waved again a couple laps later.On the restart, Kay pulled away to the $2,000 checkers with Matt Ryan riding a late race surge to finish second. Dolan finished third, followed by Todd Cooney and Eckrich.“I really thought Neal was going to win,” said Kay.  “I couldn’t get the bottom to work so I went to the top.”“The track was awesome and the car was great,” added Kay, who now has Scott Fitzpatrick heading his crew. “We’ll do a little tweaking to make it even better.”Kay had won three straight Deery events (2014-2016) at Tipton coming into the night. His Saturday checkers were his tour career 25th, putting Kay just one win behind Curt Martin and Mark Burgtorf in a tie for third on the series’ all-time wins list.Ryan won the $250 Sunoco Race Fuels feature qualifier drawing.The only weekend doubleheader on the 2018 schedule is next for the series, with $2,000 to win shows Saturday May 5 at Maquoketa Speedway and Sunday, May 6 at Quad City Speedway in East Moline, Ill.Feature results – 1. Justin Kay; 2. Matt Ryan; 3. Ryan Dolan; 4. Todd Cooney; 5. Andy Eckrich; 6. Chad Holladay; 7. Nick Marolf; 8. Jeremiah Hurst; 9. Andy Nezworski; 10. Jeff Tharp; 11. Joe Zrostlik; 12. Luke Merfield; 13. Chuck Hanna; 14. Kyle Hinrichs; 15. Rob Moss; 16. Tim Simpson; 17. Sam Halstead; 18. Darrel DeFrance; 19. Chad Coyne; 20. Terry Neal; 21. Joel Callahan; 22. Curt Martin; 23. Denny Eckrich; 24. Curt Schroeder.last_img read more

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Russia aim to top Group

first_imgFinal Preview : Group ASamara, June 24: Russia aims to reach the knockout stages of the 2018 FIFA World Cup by finishing at the top of Group A, head coach Stanislav Cherchesov said on Sunday.Earlier in the day, a total of 22 players from the Russian squad appeared for a training session at the 45,000-seat capacity Samara Arena amid hot summer temperatures hovering around 30 degrees Celsius, reports Tass news agency.The practice session was held ahead of their final group stage match against Uruguay on Monday.”We are professional footballers and we prepare for each match,” Cherchesov told a news conference here.”We are not making changes and the team must be prepared at its best for tomorrow’s match. We want to enter the playoffs from the top spot in our group,” he added.Both Russia and Uruguay have already secured their places in the Round of Last 16 of the global football championship, each enjoying wins over opponents in their two previous group stage matches. IANSlast_img read more

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Lara; Tendulkar offer advice to Windies batsmen

first_img(ESPNCRICINFO) – Protect your stumps. Play beside the line of the ball. Two nuggets of wisdom to succeed in England, from former greats Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar to Jason Holder’s West Indies, before the first Test against England in Southampton. The visitors won the previous leg of the Wisden Trophy at home in 2019, but they have struggled in England, having failed to win a Test series in the country since 1988. They have managed only six Test wins during this period.Batting remains West Indies’ weakness. Holder and head coach Phil Simmons have underlined that as a big concern. In the rain-affected second intra-squad warm-up match in Manchester, none of the top-order batsmen even got a decent start. After the first-innings collapse in that match, Holder was embarrassed to admit some of his batsmen needed to “look in the mirror”.In the absence of Darren Bravo and Shimron Hetmyer, West Indies will look at the pair of Kraigg Brathwaite and Shai Hope to lead the batting department. They were the standout performers for West Indies on their 2017 tour, as the visitors clinched a rare Test win in the country at Headingley on the back of their heroics.However, both batsmen have struggled since. In terms of average, since their tour of England in 2017, Holder has been West Indies’ best batsman.Lack of application and focus and absence of partnerships have been outlined by Simmons as the major issues with the batting. Lara, meanwhile, said that batting remained the “key” to West Indies’ fortunes.“The key to any team taking the field, especially if they are taking the field after batting, is the amount of runs they have to play with,” Lara told Tendulkar in a chat on the 100MB app.“This present West Indies team need the luxury of having runs on the board. They need their batsmen to come up trumps and give them that sort of comfort. So the effectiveness of a Kemar Roach or Shannon Gabriel will only come into play if they don’t have to go on the defensive because of the lack of runs. That has been our problem for many, many years.”According to Lara, quickly understanding the conditions, playing late, and dominating bowlers selectively were some of the cues West Indies batsmen needed to understand.When pressed by Tendulkar, who asked: “In short, your message to West Indian team is try and stay beside the line; don’t get behind the line too much?”, Lara agreed.“In England it is to protect your stumps, get acclimatised quickly, get the pace and bounce of the pitch, know what the bowlers are doing. Then when you feel comfortable you sort of grow. You don’t necessarily have to dominate every single bowler who is bowling to you. If you get to 70-80 and there’s somebody that is giving you trouble, back off. That’s key.”When Tendulkar joked that West Indies ought to take Lara “seriously”, the former West Indies captain cited the example of Tendulkar’s masterful 241 in 2004 in Sydney where he abstained from playing the cover drive – a shot that had got him into trouble throughout the series.To cut out what hurts you, Lara said, was the “key” to batting.“You know that, Sachin, as well. In terms of that great innings that you played in Sydney: it was not about a particular bowler getting you out, but it was a particular shot getting you out. And you stopped yourself from playing it and you were able to score in other areas. So it is similar sort of approach – be it your technique and may be having a problem with a particular shot or a particular bowler.A good example would be Australia. Playing against Australia, I will be 70-80 or maybe a 140 and (Glenn) McGrath comes back for a spell. I know he is going to bowl 36 balls or six overs, seven overs. I don’t need to take any great risks. Give the guy at the other end the opportunity to score.”Summing up the chat, Tendulkar said: “You just have to be smart.”Lara nodded, “Yes, that’s all”.last_img read more

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