New stadium, new clocks make for a new-look US Open

first_imgLATEST STORIES MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. But it was yet another obstacle for Stephens, along with the new types of noise.“Between that and the shot clock, I got so much going on on the court,” she said. “I’m trying to manage, like, eight different things. Oh, God, just relax a bit.”There were some benefits to Armstrong, though. Andy Murray noticed them while winning the second official match on the new court after top-ranked Simona Halep was upset in the opener.“I think it’s a bit easier to play on than the old Armstrong,” he said. “It’s a little bit more sheltered from the wind, although, you know, you can get a breeze in there. It’s kind of, before it used to swirl a lot in the old Armstrong. Now it’s sort of, it blows but tends to go in one direction.“Also, it’s shaded from quite early on in the day, which is nice for the players and also, I think, the people watching, as well, for the fans.”Following the victories by Murray and Stephens, there was a separate Armstrong night session for the first time, featuring two matches.Victoria Azarenka won the opener of that session in her return to the U.S. Open, where she hadn’t played since giving birth to her son in 2016. She said she hated playing on the old Armstrong, so she was delighted to try something new in at a tournament where everything from the logo to the chair umpires’ furniture has changed following a five-year, $600 million project that remade the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.“Not necessarily a new place,” she said, “but definitely an upgraded one.” Like the noticeable movement of fans to and from the concession stands along the concourse of the 14,000-seat stadium with a retractable roof. Patrons can see the action from the concourse, and they gathered in large numbers until they were allowed back to their seats during changeovers.Except for the times when they didn’t wait at all.Not that it was just the foot traffic. For Stephens, it felt like planes, trains and automobiles.“There was a lot going on, like I said, between the airplanes and the subway behind the court, the concessions being in the lower bowl, and people walking in the games at, like, 2-all, 3-all,” she said. “There’s just a lot going on.”The serve clocks are being used for the first time in a Grand Slam as a way to speed up the pace of play. The clocks are mounted on the walls toward the corners, not particularly noticeable for fans or even for fast-playing players. American Sam Querrey said he rarely even looks at the clocks because he’s used to serving well within the 25-second limit.ADVERTISEMENT Evgeniya Rodina, of Russia, foreground, and Sloane Stephens warm-up to play in Louis Armstrong Stadium during the first round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Monday, Aug. 27, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)NEW YORK — Sloane Stephens came back to a whole new U.S. Open.From a rebuilt stadium to a revamped schedule, Flushing Meadows had quite a different look.ADVERTISEMENT Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Guiao looking at Cabagnot, Slaughter, Lassiter for Fiba qualifiers DepEd’s Taal challenge: 30K students displaced Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew More second looks, too: For the first time in any Grand Slam tournament, there was electric line calling on all courts.Throw in new serve clocks and the changes provided some new challenges for Stephens on Monday as she opened her title defense with a 6-1, 7-5 victory over Evgenia Rodina.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSTim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’That match was played in the new Louis Armstrong Stadium, with obstacles she didn’t face last year when her final few matches were in Arthur Ashe Stadium.“It was fun to play first day on a brand-new stadium court,” Stephens said. “But there was a lot happening.”center_img Peza offers relief to ecozone firms Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ ‘High crimes and misdemeanors’: Trump impeachment trial begins Palace OKs total deployment ban on Kuwait OFWs Gov’t in no rush to rescue animals in Taal View comments Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextlast_img read more

No. 1 Simona Halep back in action at Sydney International

first_imgPhilippine Army to acquire MANPADS, self-propelled howitzers MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Tom Brady most dominant player in AFC championship history LATEST STORIES Soccer star Wayne Rooney charged with public intoxication She will start the season without a coach after Australian Darren Cahill said in November he wanted to spend more time with his family. Cahill, who has spent the past four years with Halep, is taking a 12-month break.The 27-year-old Halep said she will not consider a new coach for at least the next few months.″(He) was a very big part of my career and I want to thank him for that,” she said. “Together we won the Grand Slam that we always wished for. It’s going to be tough, I’m sure. … but he decided this and I fully understood because family comes first always.”With a bye in the first round in Sydney, Halep will meet either Jelena Ostapenko or Ashleigh Barty in the second round before a possible quarterfinal against Karolina Pliskova.ADVERTISEMENT Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil View comments Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? And while the injury didn’t require surgery, Halep, who has previously battled similar injuries during her junior years, has spent much of the past three months off the court.“It was very scary because it was below the back, so it’s always dangerous. But I had treatment at home,” Halep said while sailing around Sydney Harbour on Sunday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back Chriss“I rested for about six weeks and I did nothing, just exercises for the back. I didn’t have pain while I was practicing this period, off-season. So now I feel confident and it’s OK. But I need to see during the official match.”Halep got off to a strong start last year, reaching the Australian Open final (losing to Caroline Wozniacki) and claiming her first Grand Slam title in Paris (beating Sloane Stephens) before losing her final four matches of the season, including a first-round defeat at the U.S. Open. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ FILE – In this Aug. 27, 2018, file photo, Simona Halep, of Romania, serves to Kaia Kanepi, of Estonia, during the first round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, in New York. No. 1-ranked Halep returns to competitive tennis this week at the Sydney International unsure if her back injury has fully healed.(AP Photo/Andres Kudacki, File)SYDNEY — No. 1-ranked Simona Halep returns to competitive tennis this week at the Sydney International unsure if her back injury has fully healed.It will be the first time Halep has played since the French Open champion ended her season in October due to a herniated disc in her back. ADVERTISEMENT Japeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for Ginebra Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titlelast_img read more

Bassa District Youth Need Health Facility

first_imgThe president of the Gianda Youth Development Association (GIYODA)  in Kpogbahn Statutory District No. 4, Grand Bassa County, has stressed the need  for health facility in Gianda Clan in the district.Mr. G. William Olu Diggs told the Daily Observer that there are more than 100 towns and villages in the clan and some parts of Rivercess County that are in need of the health facility to meet their health needs.He disclosed that since the establishment of the clan some years back, government has not built any health facility in the clan to cater to the health needs of the inhabitants in that part of the district.According to him, they have and continue to find it difficult taking patients, especially pregnant women, in hammocks about eight hours’ walk from the Zondo Community to the Compound #4 Clinic in the district for medical attention.He added that they also find it difficult carrying patients from the clan to the Liberian Agricultural Company Hospital in District #3, since the company does not accept or allow their ambulance to go outside the plantation for patients, especially during the current Ebola crisis in the country.The GIYODA president is therefore appealing to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and other international health related organizations or other humanitarian groups to help build a health facility near the Zondo Mission Community in Gianda Clan in the district to curtail the health problems.He used the interview to recommend one Mr. Madison Gbogbah-Tarr, a rural health worker who serves as a focal person for the Grand Bassa County Health Team, who will properly manage activities of the health center if government and her partners should consider addressing their appeal for the health facility.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

To Become Rice-Self-sufficient, We Need a Strategy

first_imgThere are two places rice can grow in Liberia: upland, and in the swamps or lowlands, both of which Liberia has in  abundance.  But more importantly, we have hundreds of thousands of people throughout the country who can grow rice; and that is what most of them do for a living.  It is said that 80% or more of our people earn their living from farming.So why aren’t we feeding ourselves in rice?Someone has said that the Liberian government is more interested in finding money to import rice than finding money to empower farmers to grow rice.  How can the Agriculture Ministry (MOA) respond to this charge?The best way to respond is by developing a carefully conceived strategy to reach out to rice farmers.  The strategy must first target farmers who are most productive in rice cultivation, such as those in Bong, Lofa, and Nimba counties. They should secondly be organized, trained and equipped with the tools, rice seeds and fertilizers they need to grow rice.  Thirdly, they should also be specifically trained in swamp rice cultivation, which yields three times per year instead of upland rice, which is harvested only once a year.Fourthly, the strategy should ensure the government’s provision of rice processing equipment in each rice-producing county, where the commodity can be processed.Fifth, the strategy should facilitate the MARKETING of the rice.  All too often farmers complain that they grow rice but cannot sell it because either there is no one to buy it locally or they lack the transportation to take it to markets where the rice is in demand.What does all this mean?  It means that the Ministry of Agriculture should put together a team of experts to work with productive farmers around the country in order to develop and refine this strategy and make it operational.  The farmers need to be involved in its formulation because they are the direct beneficiaries, so they should be part of the formulation.Once this strategy is in place and yielding the expected results, the Agriculture Ministry should reach out to the all the other farmers, beginning with those in the southeast, some 4000 of whom had been recruited under an OXFAM program to grow rice in the lowlands.  Our reporter Judoemue Kollie reported last week that these farmers had been contacted, but had been waiting in vain to be mobilized for the project.  The project was expected to train them in swamp rice cultivation but since nothing had been done, they were returning to the upland where they had been engaged in rice growing.Once the southeastern farmers are engaged and trained in lowland rice cultivation, all the other points in the strategy should be applied to them, too.The MOA would then be ready to engage all the other rice farmers throughout the country in the implementation of the proposed strategy.Let us seriously try this strategy and see what it will do to improve rice production in Liberia.President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and other government functionaries have always complained that the media are quick to criticize, without offering any solutions.  We at the Daily Observer have always striven to do differently.  Here again is one solution to end our dependency on the outside world in respect of this critical commodity–Liberia’s staple, rice.These suggestions advanced by this newspaper are far from foolproof (perfect); but at least they provide a beginning.  We pray that GOL will improve upon them and start the ball rolling toward self-sufficiency in this all important and urgent commodity, our national staple.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

NEC’s Lapses Worry INCHR

first_imgSince the voter registration (VR) was launched on February 1, the process has been marred by a barrage of irregularities ranging from misspelling of potential voters’ names to malfunctioning equipment and the “trucking” of eligible voters.The VR problems have now caught the attention of the Independent National Commission on Human Rights (INCHR) which said in a statement, that it is deeply concerned and worried about the waves of irregularities and other irregularities surrounding the VR process at various registration centers.Specifically, the INCHR said it has observed with grave concern the lack of logistics, abandonment of centers due to untimely payment of stipend to VR registration workers, insufficient registration centers and lack of security personnel in electoral districts #11, #15, #17, #5 and several other centers inMontserrado County as well as Grand Kru, Lofa, Nimba, Maryland, Bong and Grand Gedeh counties.“We have also observed that cameras, scanners and other equipment assigned to these centers to identify and prevent electoral fraud are malfunctioning, thereby either slowing down the registration or completely halting the process,” Commissioner James D. Torh said in a release.“The magnitude of these limitations,” the INCHR release said, “seriously challenges the resolve of Liberians and this government to ensure free, fair and transparent elections is held where every Liberian is afforded equal access, opportunity and space to exercise their political rights.”Another organization that raised similar concerns recently was the Elections Coordinating Committee (ECC), which spoke of similar irregularities the VR process has encountered.The ECC spoke on the issues at a news conference in Monrovia where it also made mention of late arrival of staff at registration centers, miss-location of registration centers, misspelling of the names of registrants, defective cameras, and lack of security officers at registration centers.“Overall reports from the ECC observers across all 15 sub-political divisions (say) there have been challenges such as some centers not opening or issues with the cameras, but these have not been widespread,” said head of ECC’s Steering Committee, Oscar Bloh.Meanwhile, the INCHR strongly reaffirmed its commitment to promote human rights during the electoral processes and called on the government to expeditiously provide the necessary support to NEC to avert undue derailment of public trust in the upcoming elections.The INCHR is also calling on all eligible Liberians to register and report all and any behaviors inconsistent with the VR guidelines.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Legislation needed to help mentally ill

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The solution to the homeless problem in Los Angeles County is not to spread it to other communities but to reduce the number of people who are homeless. Skid Row, near Los Angeles City’s downtown, has the highest concentration of homeless individuals. The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority census revealed that a majority of the nearly 35,000 chronically homeless in Los Angeles County suffer from mental illness and/or addiction to drugs and alcohol. To solve the homelessness problem, fundamental reform of our mental health laws must be accomplished including mandatory psychological, alcohol and drug-abuse treatment. However, these necessary reforms continue to be opposed by groups aligned with the American Civil Liberties Union and like-minded legislators. The solution is not forcing them into neighboring cities and communities, as suggested by the downtown special interests looking to profit on the area’s new high property values as evidenced by the ill-advised taxpayer subsidy of the Grand Avenue Project. While community-based treatment facilities, stabilization centers, family access centers, and transitional housing are valuable temporary tools to treat symptoms of homelessness, they must provide proactive access to medical treatment that addresses mental illness and rehabilitation for alcohol/drug addiction. As we roll out new services throughout the county of Los Angeles, facilities need to be established and operated with the support and participation of the community. Long-term success for shelters and treatment centers depends on cooperative working relationships with local government, business, service organizations, faith-based groups and community volunteers. An example of a successful public/private partnership is Pasadena’s Union Station Foundation. Since 1973, it has provided emergency and transitional housing for individuals and families, hot meals, job development, health care, case management services, and vital mental health care and substance abuse rehabilitation. The Antelope Valley’s Lancaster Homeless Shelter, operated by Catholic Charities, recently added 52 more transitional housing units for adults with the $1 million grant we secured for this project. The proposed St. Joseph’s Manor in the Antelope Valley will use county and private contributions to house, support and inspire homeless clients in the Antelope Valley. Penny Lane’s new Lancaster center is another superb example of the community working together in a united effort to provide housing and services to emancipated youths at risk of becoming homeless. We initiated the Los Angeles County Emergency Outreach Call Center and hotline at (800) 854-7771 and launched the Network of Care Web site at All of these programs and housing projects fall short of our goal of long-term solutions for ending the homeless problem. The long-term solution requires state legislation to reform the dysfunctional mental health laws. Local experience continues to demonstrate that those suffering from mental illness and/or alcohol or substance abuse require mandatory treatment.— Michael D. Antonovich is a Los Angeles County supervisor. E-mail him at read more

Arsenal announce record shirt deal with Emirates

first_img“Our shirt partnership is the longest-running in the Premier League and one of the longest relationships in world sport,” said Ivan Gazidis, chief executive of the club, who have not given a figure for the deal.“This mutual commitment is testimony to the strength and depth of our unique relationship.”“Emirates are again demonstrating their great belief in our approach and ambition and their significantly increased investment will help us continue to compete for trophies and bring more success to the club and our fans around the world.”Emirates president Sir Tim Clark said: “Arsenal’s strong appeal and influence around the globe, combined with their ambitions as a club, make them an ideal partner for Emirates, with values that reflect ours as a brand.“As a long-standing supporter of football, we are passionate about the game and are a proud partner to the team.”Emirates also has naming rights to the stadium until 2021.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang became Arsenal’s record signing when he joined from Borussia Dortmund last month © AFP/File / Adrian DENNISLONDON, United Kingdom, Feb 19 – Arsenal announced the club’s biggest-ever sponsorship deal on Monday, extending their shirt partnership with Dubai-based airline Emirates by five years.The Gunners confirmed the branding of Emirates, which began its sponsorship agreement with the north London club in 2006, would continue to feature on the shirts and training kit of all of their teams until the end of the 2023/2024 season.last_img read more

Carragher: I’d love to see Liverpool sign Real Madrid starlet

first_img1 Raphael Varane Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher would like to see the club mount an ambitious bid for Real Madrid starlet Raphael Varane.The Merseysiders are currently on a spending spree having already signed Rickie Lambert, Emre Can and Adam Lallana, which has been funded by the sale of star striker Luis Suarez.Barcelona’s £75million move for the Uruguayan means the Liverpool coffers will be full and with a £20million bid for Southampton star Dejan Lovren failing, a defender is sure to be on Rodgers’ wishlist.And when asked by a fan which centre-back he would like to see Brendan Rodgers sign, he tweeted: “I would love to see Varane from Madrid. Also like Garay of Argentina but just moved to Zenit from Benfica.”last_img

Greek match postponed after coach injured by toilet roll

first_imgThe incident prompted the Olympiakos team to leave the pitch in protest before riots erupted outside the ground.“I took my team and left. Goodbye,” angry Olympiakos vice-president and general director Savvas Theodoridis told referee Alexandros Aretopoulos.However, PAOK communications director Kyriakos Kyriakos said: “It was obvious that Olympiakos came here with that goal (to suspend the match). They have been provoking for 30 years now. They came to scream and to provoke.”Raining rolls: PAOK’s supporters throw toilet rolls and other objects onto the pitch © AFP / SAKIS MITROLIDISAngry PAOK fans leaving the stadium then clashed with police who used tear gas to quell the violence.PAOK are the league leaders and have a nine-point advantage over third-place Olympiakos who have won the last seven straight league titles.Aretopoulos was finishing his report with the match most likely to be officially suspended leading to a possible heavy punishment for PAOK, which may include a loss of points as well as a fine.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Toilet roll stops play: Olympiakos’ Spanish coach Oscar Garcia reacts after being hit in the face by a toilet roll thrown by a PAOK fan prior to the Greek Super League match in Thessaloniki on Sunday. The match was postponed © AFP / SAKIS MITROLIDISTHESSALONIKI, Greece, Feb 26 – Sunday’s Greek Super League derby between PAOK Thessaloniki and Olympiakos was called off after Olympiakos coach Oscar Garcia was struck in the face by a toilet roll thrown by a spectator minutes before kick-off.Garcia left Toumba Stadium for a local hospital to seek treatment for a bloodied lip.last_img read more

Dortmund coach Favre gives up on title after derby defeat to Schalke

first_img0Shares0000Marco Reus was sent off as Dortmund suffered a critical blow to their title race hopes with a derby defeat on Saturday © AFP / INA FASSBENDERBerlin, Germany, Apr 27 – Borussia Dortmund coach Lucien Favre said he had given up hope of winning the Bundesliga title after a red card for Marco Reus and a Daniel Caligiuri double saw Dortmund lose 4-2 to Schalke in the Ruhr derby.Reus was the first of two Dortmund players sent off in five second-half minutes as Schalke came from behind to hand Bayern Munich a golden opportunity to win their seventh straight league title. League leaders Bayern can now pull four points clear at the top with three games to go with a win at relegation-threatened Nuremberg on Sunday.Asked on Sky Germany whether the title race was over, Dortmund coach Favre said: “yes, of course”. Dortmund took the lead in style on 14 minutes, Jadon Sancho setting up Mario Goetze with a splendid chip over Schalke’s back line. However Schalke drew level just two minutes later, Daniel Caligiuri converting a contested penalty after a handball decision against Julian Weigl.Favre railed against the decision, saying that new regulations on handball were “the biggest scandal in football”. “Football is making itself a laughing stock,” said the usually reserved Swiss. “What do they want players to do, cut their arms off?”“The people who invented these rules, I don’t know how they look at themselves in the mirror.”Two minutes later the visitors sent the Signal-Iduna-Park into shock as Salif Sane rose at a corner to put Schalke ahead. Double disaster struck for Dortmund on the hour mark when captain Marco Reus was sent off for a studs-up challenge on Suat Serdar and Caligiuri curled the resulting free-kick into the top corner.Marius Wolf then became the second Dortmund player sent off, once again for a reckless challenge on Serdar. Axel Witsel pulled one back for Dortmund with five minutes remaining, but their hopes were crushed a moment later when Breel Embolo fired in Schalke’s fourth.– Fresh hope for Stuttgart –Emil Forsberg’s penalty secured Champions League qualification for Leipzig in a 2-1 win over Freiburg © AFP / Ronny HartmannElsewhere, RB Leipzig secured Champions League qualification with a 2-1 win over Freiburg, while fourth-place Eintracht Frankfurt were held to a 0-0 draw by Hertha Berlin. Freiburg’s Vicenzo Grifo became the first opposing player to score in Leipzig since February, cheekily converting a free-kick before goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi was ready.Yet goals from Timo Werner and Emil Forsberg gave Leipzig a sixth straight win.Werder Bremen’s hopes of qualifying for Europe suffered a blow as they lost 4-1 at Fortuna Duesseldorf.They are five points off the Europa league places after a defeat in which Benito Raman put the hosts ahead after just 55 seconds, and Kenan Karaman doubled the lead on 23 minutes.A Max Kruse penalty restored hope for Werder, but second half goals from Rouwen Hennings and Markus Suttner sealed the home win.At the other end of the table, Henrik Weydandt fired bottom club Hanover to a 1-0 win over Mainz.Hanover’s still have little hope of survival, though, after fellow strugglers Stuttgart beat top-four hopefuls Borussia Moenchengladbach in Saturday’s late game. Anastasios Donis’s second half goal fired Stuttgart to their first victory in seven games in their first match under interim coach Nico Willig. The three-time champions now sit six points clear of automatic relegation and six points adrift of safety in the relegation play-off place. 0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more