Hickie: Recruitment will be tough

first_img The IRFU decided not to offer Kidney a new contract and he has left his job as coach ahead of the end of his current deal on June 30. Hickie, who also played for Leinster, has named Conor O’Shea, Mark McCall and Joe Schmidt as possible replacements for Kidney. But Hickie believes it will not be easy to tempt the likes of Harlequins director of rugby O’Shea, Saracens director of rugby McCall or Leinster coach Schmidt, and he told BBC Radio Five Live: “It will be a big challenge to see who they can get.” Former Ireland winger Denis Hickie believes the Irish Rugby Football Union has a tough task to find the right man to replace Declan Kidney. Press Associationcenter_img He added: “Mark McCall is doing a very good job at Saracens. Joe Schmidt, the Leinster coach, would be a great public favourite. It’s whether they can get a guy like him to commit to Ireland for four to five years.” Ireland suffered a poor RBS 6 Nations campaign which featured shock defeats to Scotland and Italy and a fifth-placed finish which saw the country fall to a lowest ever world ranking of ninth. The loss in Italy on the final weekend of the campaign led many to call for Kidney’s resignation, so Tuesday’s announcement came as no surprise. A statement from the IRFU read: “The decision was made following an in-depth review process carried out by the IRFU’s National Team Review Group (NTRG). The IRFU thank Declan Kidney for the unquestionable commitment, passion, professionalism and success he has delivered to Irish Rugby to date. “The IRFU, through the NTRG, will continue the process of identifying suitable candidates for the Ireland coaching role.” Hickie believes injuries played a significant part in Ireland’s poor Six Nations showing, exposing a lack of strength in depth, as the 2009 champions came up short. Ireland had to deal with a debilitating injury list which robbed them of key players such as Paul O’Connell, Jonathan Sexton and Simon Zebo. “In recent years, certainly this year and even last year, there has been an horrific run of injuries,” added Hickie. “When Ireland won the Grand Slam they used 21 players and this year they used 36 and Ireland doesn’t have 36 front-line international players.” last_img read more

Angels’ Shohei Ohtani expected to start pitching in May

first_imgPujols, 40, played 98 games at first last season, and Eppler said he “didn’t see a reason why he wouldn’t be able to (play at that volume) if that’s what Joe asks him to do.”Maddon, who met with Pujols last month, said that will be a topic for spring training.“His offseason has been spectacular, from a workout perspective,” Maddon said. “He’s highly motivated. I don’t want to create any marks in the sand. Let’s come to camp and talk and watch. Of course, he’s going to need rest. Of course, the more we parse it out, the better he will be for the playoffs and the latter part of the season. I’m really aware of that.” Had Ohtani started the season on the mound, he still likely would have had to skip starts or take a break to manage his innings. Ohtani pitched 140 innings in 2016 in Japan, followed by 25-1/3 innings his final year in Japan and 51-2/3 innings his first season in the majors. He did not pitch in 2019.Even though this will be Ohtani’s third season in the majors, and he will not have pitched from start to finish in any of them, Eppler said the overall value he brings to the team makes it worth waiting through these issues.“Shohei Ohtani is a huge talent for us and I think it’s very evident to everybody the contributions that he makes, so I wouldn’t characterize anything as disappointing,” Eppler said.Ohtani, 25, won the American League Rookie of the Year award in 2018, when he hit 22 homers with a .925 OPS and posted a 3.31 ERA. As a hitter only in 2019, he hit 18 homers with an .848 OPS.“The big thing there is, to me, when you’re the steward of somebody who’s going to be that good for a long period of time, you have to be careful,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “I think patience is a key word with all of this.” TEMPE, Ariz. — Angels fans are going to have to wait a little longer to see Shohei Ohtani on the mound.The Angels are targeting mid-May for Ohtani to make his 2020 regular-season debut on the mound, General Manager Billy Eppler said, as Angels pitchers and catchers reported for spring training Tuesday. The Angels are planning on Ohtani being used as the designated hitter from Opening Day.The Angels have been hinting at this possibility for weeks, so it’s no surprise.Ohtani was always going to be on an innings limit after having Tommy John surgery Sept. 30, 2018. Ohtani didn’t finish his pitching rehab until two months ago, because the program had to be stopped for three months after he had knee surgery, so the Angels decided the best course of action was simply to wait before using him as a pitcher. Exactly how the Angels will prepare Ohtani to pitch remains to be seen, but they will benefit from a new rule change.The Angels will now be allowed to have Ohtani make minor-league rehab appearances as a pitcher while remaining on the active roster as a hitter. That means he could leave the team for a day to pitch a game in the minors and be eligible to hit in the majors the day before and the day after. The Angels still might opt not to have him hit immediately the day before or after, but it would be better than having him on the injured list.Eppler said Ohtani can threw simulated games in what would be his first few spring training starts while staying with the major-league team. He likely wouldn’t need to pitch in the minors until he gets to a workload of more than 50 or 60 pitches, which would probably be his last three or four outings.“I think there’s value in pitching him against guys in a different uniform here and there,” Eppler said. “We’ll do that when we can, and when he builds up to that workload to do that.”Once Ohtani is back pitching in the majors, the plan remains for him to pitch once a week, Eppler said. With 26 weeks in the season, that could mean about 20 starts for Ohtani, although Eppler wouldn’t give a number.Eppler also said the Angels won’t use a true six-man rotation, but they will insert an extra starter to give the other starters an extra day of rest when the schedule makes it appropriate.With the plans for Ohtani now clear, the Angels will definitely have at least one more spot up for grabs in the rotation at the outset of the season. Barring injury, Andrew Heaney, Dylan Bundy and Julio Teheran are locks for the rotation, and Maddon said Griffin Canning “has got a pretty good shot to be part of that group.”Patrick Sandoval, Jose Suarez, Jaime Barría, Dillon Peters, Félix Peña and Matt Andriese would seemingly be the leading candidates for the fifth spot. Peña, who is rehabbing from knee surgery but is already throwing, and Andriese could also pitch out of the bullpen.The other impact of Ohtani’s early absence from the mound is that he will be available to be the designated hitter almost every day for a month and a half, which will put a premium on Albert Pujols’ ability to play first base.Related Articles Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros center_img Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter last_img read more

At tail end of career, polio victim lifter looks for another fruitful ASEAN Para games stint

first_imgAt 43 years old, Dumapong-Ancheta, a polio victim, acknowledges that time is no longer on her side.“I know that in a few years time, I’ll be retiring. I told myself that if I won’t win a medal in the ASEAN Para Games level, I think that should be the time that I step away and make a graceful exit,” she said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingBut her coach Ramon Debuque still maintains his belief on the Ifugao native. That is enough to keep Dumapong-Ancheta fighting as she looks to add another gold medal to her already stocked collection.“I had a talk with my coach and he told me that I still have time. He told me that I still have five years or more, and I intend to give my best in these last competitions,” she said. Mayweather on why McGregor landed more punches than Pacquiao: ‘I wasn’t counterpunching’ Powerlift Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta. Photo by Randolph B. LeongsonAlthough she’s already a veteran of numerous wars, powerlifter Adeline Dumapong-Ancheta still feels the nerves as she prepares for the 2017 ASEAN Para Games in Kuala Lumpur.“There’s still pressure. Although this would be my eighth time in the ASEAN Para Games, I know that I’m also not getting younger,” Dumapong-Ancheta, who is once again competing in the +85 kg category of women’s powerlifting, said in Filipino.ADVERTISEMENT NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo LATEST STORIES Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his sidecenter_img Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:36Manny Pacquiao part of 2019 SEA Games opening ceremony MOST READ Dumapong-Ancheta is also happy to see the Philippine paralympic movement evolve since she first started in 1997.“I’m glad to see that in terms of support for the athletes, the interest for disability sports have gone up. We’ve gone a long way and I’m proud to say that I was part of that journey. Looking back to those days that we didn’t have uniforms and any formal training, to what it is today where we get whole year training and allowances, I’m just glad for everything that has been given to us,” she said.Her bronze medal win in the +82.5 kg category at the 2000 Sydney Paralympics opened the floodgates for Dumapong-Anchenta and differently abled athletes as sports officials and sponsors started giving them a second look.But with the benefits come the expectations, and Dumapong-Ancheta said the Filipino paraathletes are motivated they deserve the support as they seek to bring home medals in the regional tiff.“We know we can compete and we can defend whatever we’ve won before. We also know that we shouldn’t just match, but also surpass the records we’ve had in the past. We intend to give our all every time,” she said.ADVERTISEMENT Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

Guiding lights behind our sports stars

first_imgSuccess has many fathers and failure none is an old cliche. However, if one were to go beyond this and look into the success of Indian athletes who are gunning for Olympic glory, it’s clear the role played by their families is huge.Sports View by S. Kannan.The other day when world chess champion Viswanathan Anand was in the Capital, he spoke of how he had a strong feeling the Indians would do well in the London Olympics. When we say ‘well’, the immediate question is how many medals we can win!First things first, unlike China, we are not a socialist state where by the age of six or seven the boy or girl is taken away from home and put in an extremely demanding sports training centre.By the time the Chinese athlete is in his or her late teens, he or she has to become a champion at least at the Asian level. In India, even as we debate the roles played by the state and central governments and how the corporates are also willing to chip in today, it’s the parents or the immediate family members who have played a huge role in shaping the careers of athletes.Let’s take a look at the Indian contingent for the London Games. Some of the biggest stars who have done well on the big stage owe their success to the lessons in motivation from home. The list has to begin with Leander Paes, the country’s first individual Olympic medallist after KD Jadhav. The Atlanta Games bronze medallist wanted to be a football player, but it was dad Vece Paes who ensured the son took to an individual sport. I have seen in 1990, after Vece pulled Leander out of Vijay Amritraj’s BAT academy, how he struggled for sponsorship and funds.advertisementHad Dad Paes given up then, Leander would never have gone on to achieve glory at the highest levels. While Vece had the sporting background and what it takes to win at the higher levels, many other parents never had such a good understanding.Sania Mirza’s parents Imran and Nassema made many sacrifices to ensure her tennis career flourished.Even as the Leander Paes vs Mahesh Bhupathi controversy cools down, the success story of Mahesh is also one where the parents played big roles. In the desert heat of Oman, CGK Bhupathi and mother Meera ensured Mahesh picked up the basics of tennis well.It was their passion to see Mahesh shape up as a good tennis player which resulted in the NRI moving to the United States to hone his skills. Once he did well in the NCAA league, he had to take a call on whether to play college or turn pro. The results from Mahesh are now there to see.If one is to take a look at the prime example of a tennis player taking up the sport due to the sheer perseverance of the parents, it has to be Sania Mirza. From the age of six, Imran and Naseema Mirza drove their daughter around in an Ambassador car. Mind you, those were the days when you had no air conditioners in cars and travel stretched to hundreds of kilometres in south India for Sania to play tennis tournaments. The sacrifice and effort behind shaping up Sania’s career continues for the Mirzas, though people will talk with sarcasm because the mother has been named manager of the Indian team for the Olympics.At least, it’s better than some obscure official, who has no clue of tennis, being made the manager as he will fetch the All India Tennis Association a vote or two in their elections. As for the success story of Saina Nehwal, again it’s a case of parents putting their heart and soul into the efforts. Imagine, coming from a science background in agriculture in Haryana and not knowing much about badminton.Yet, the burning ambition for the Nehwals – Harvir and Usha – to ensure Saina did well as a badminton player, forced them shift cities and make Hyderabad their home. The infrastructure was good and the Nehwals knew this was the city where Saina could get the best grounding from an assortment of coaches.Abhinav Bindra with father AS Bindra.And what of India’s biggest Olympic champion – Abhinav Bindra? As one who saw the shooting range for the first time at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996, dad AS Bindra drilled it into his son’s head that he could also become a champion. In less than four years, Abhinav was shooting for India in the 2000 Sydney Olympics and again in Athens 2004. The big moment came in Beijing 2008. Had it not been for the motivation from Abhinav’s entire family, he may have never made it so big.People say that as he comes from a rich background, with his own indoor, air-conditioned range in Chandigarh, training was easy. Heck, even if you have that kind of money, you still need to shoot for hours to achieve perfection.advertisementToday, everyone is asking if Beijing Olympics bronze medallist Sushil can again wrestle his way to a medal. Just look at the background he comes from.His father Diwan Singh has spent a major portion of his life working as a driver in MTNL and leaving son Sushil in the Chhatrasal Stadium. Diwan Singh would have never known what it takes to win medals on the world stage or the Olympics.But it is the push from the father and faith in his son that today he makes us all proud each time he represents India.One look at the boxing squad, and you can see there are many more stories of how boxers have arrived on the big stage against all odds. Hot contender Shiva Thapa’s father was aware he had to put his children into boxing and make them champions one day.As a qualified karate instructor, Padam Thapa bought son Shiva a punching bag at home. The journey began from there and today the dashing boxer is a hot medal prospect. The cases of Vikas Krishan and Manoj Kumar are also equally captivating. Vikas comes from a humble background and his father Krishan Kumar works as a clerk in the Haryana State Electricity Board.Despite the humble background, the family dreamt big and ensured Vikas would enjoy boxing to the hilt and one day make it big. As for Vikas, his brother Rajesh Kumar would take the boy for lessons in punching on a cycle. Had it not been for his effort and belief that his brother would punch with felicity, Vikas may have never become one of the 81 athletes who will represent India in London.In India, the sporting culture is still not strong, so we need to salute the families which have produced these [email protected]last_img read more

AB de Villiers’ sensational come back ton helps South Africa regain No. 1 ODI rank

first_imgAB de Villiers returned from his sabbatical with a blistering 176 off 104 balls to set up South Africa’s series-clinching 104-run win over Bangladesh in their second one-day international on Wednesday.De Villiers hit his career-best score in 50-over cricket in his first international innings in four months, taking South Africa to 353-6 after it was put in to bat by Bangladesh at Boland Park.A career best score in ODIs wins @ABdeVilliers17 the POTM award for the 2nd #SAvBAN ODI: https://t.co/epZ3pd0iz0His best ever ODI innings? pic.twitter.com/07a4XqCoin- ICC (@ICC) October 18, 2017Round of applause for these career-best performances. #ProteaFire @ABdeVilliers17 @andileluck19 #SAvBAN pic.twitter.com/8t6jOzyI80- Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) October 18, 2017Bangladesh replied with 249 all out, with 21-year-old seamer Andile Phehlukwayo claiming 4-40.South Africa leads the three-match series 2-0, and now has the luxury of resting some of its big names for the final game on Sunday. Bangladesh is still searching for its first win over the Proteas on the tour, having also lost the test series 2-0.Imrul Kayes made 68 for Bangladesh at the top of the order and Mushfiqur Rahim hit 60, but it wasn’t enough as they chased South Africa’s big score.That big total was mainly down to the improvisation and power-hitting of De Villiers, who arrived with South Africa on 90-2 and left just over two overs from the end with his team 343-4.He was part of century stands with Hashim Amla (85) and JP Duminy (30), and was the driving force of both, making 86 of the 136 runs he put on with Amla and 90 of the 117 he put on with Duminy.advertisementCongratulations @OfficialCSA – you’re back on top of the @MRFWorldwide ODI team rankings! ???? #SAvBAN pic.twitter.com/ZLa4E0rpzx- ICC (@ICC) October 18, 2017De Villiers’ last international was at the Champions Trophy in England in June. He skipped the test series against England and Bangladesh to rest and spend time with his family.The break appears to have been well-timed for the 33-year-old former South Africa captain. He collected 15 fours and seven sixes on his way to the fourth highest score by a South African in ODIs. He was out caught in the deep only 12 runs short of Gary Kirsten’s South African record of 188 not out.De Villiers took only 68 balls to get to 100, and only 25 balls to go from 100 to 150, when he launched a flurry of sixes over square leg and midwicket.Amla and Quinton de Kock (46) set South Africa up with a solid opening partnership of 90 but it was De Villiers’ acceleration in the middle and late overs that took the game beyond Bangladesh.Rubel Hossain was Bangladesh’s best bowler with 4-62, including the wicket of De Villiers and two in two balls in the last over.last_img read more

NRL Touch Premiership: ladder update

first_imgThe results from this weekends games were:Men’s:2 Titans v 0 BroncosWomen’s: 8 Broncos v 7 TitansBelow are the NRL Touch Premiership Ladders, as they stand following this weekend’s games.Make sure you get to the next games:Tigers v Knights at ANZ Stadium (21 July 2018)Grand Final at CBus Super Stadium (29 July 2018)last_img

10 months agoWest Ham boss Pellegrini delivers Nasri update

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say West Ham boss Pellegrini delivers Nasri updateby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveWest Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini is ready to make a call on trialist Samir Nasri.Nasri is training with West Ham as he looks to earn a contract.Pellegrini confirmed a decision is expected soon on a player that could help boost their chances of securing a top-six finish this season.“We are going to take the decision next week.“Sami is working with us very well, he is losing weight, his mentality is to try and have a spot here with the squad, so we will see in the next days.” last_img read more

Michigan State Is Going To Win The National Title, According To Jimmy Fallon’s Puppies

first_imgIt’s official – the Michigan State Spartans are going to win the NCAA title next Monday. Well, at least according to a bunch of ridiculously cute puppies. Tuesday night, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon renewed one of its more popular clips, airing a March Madness version of its “Puppies Predict” segment. Kentucky and Wisconsin each had one puppy eating from their bowl, while MSU eventually had three. Easy winner.After watching the clip, we’re not quite convinced that Fallon realizes that there’s a difference between Michigan and Michigan State, but that’s not really the point. The puppies have spoken. Head to the casino immediately.last_img read more

Video: Zeke Elliott Did The Joey Bosa Shrug Celebration After Scoring His 4th TD Of Game

first_imgEzekiel Elliott celebrating after an Ohio State touchdown.GLENDALE, AZ – JANUARY 01: Running back Ezekiel Elliott #15 of the Ohio State Buckeyes (left) celebrates his second quarter touchdown with running back Jalin Marshall #7 (right) during the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)Ohio State just took a 35-21 lead over Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl on running back Ezekiel Elliott’s fourth touchdown of the game, a 48-yard scamper.After the play, Elliott did Buckeye defense lineman Joey Bosa’s patented shrug celebration, a way of recognizing the star defensive end, who was ejected from the game in the first quarter for targeting.Bosa saw the shout-out, and acknowledged it on Twitter. See you Zeke— Joey Bosa (@jbbigbear) January 1, 2016Ohio State just intercepted a DeShone Kizer pass, and could put this game out of reach for good.last_img read more

Video: Former Baylor President Botches Interview, PR Woman Comes To His Aid

first_imgJust when you thought former Baylor president Ken Starr couldn’t possibly look any worse, he goes and botches a television interview in the worst kind of way. During an interview with KWTX News 10 Thursday, an answer he gave regarding a victim’s email led to a communications specialist he brought with him to stop the interview, pull him aside and suggest that he use a different response. Starr then sits down and looks to the specialist once again for help before providing the new, scripted response. The entire thing was caught on camera, and KWTX posted the video to its Facebook page.Baylor continues to make things worse for itself, and Starr isn’t helping. He may no longer be president, but the university might have to take it a step further and separate itself completely.last_img read more