Jamaica Diaspora Conference: Really Jamaica’s conference

first_imgThe 8th biennial Jamaica Diaspora Conference held in Kingston, Jamaica closed last week, and like many past conferences, there is some grumbling that the conference didn’t meet expectations.This grumbling originated from past conferences, which resulted in delegates who attend the conference regularly in former years, staying away this year. A report in a Jamaican newspapers on the eve of this week’s conference indicated people were fed up of insistent talking, and the relative lack of action with the outcome of these conferences.This dissatisfaction among some delegates is sourced in a great misunderstanding by some within the DiasporaDoesn’t help the DiasporaMost of the criticism is that these biennial conferences are fruitless, because very little results from the conferences that helps Jamaicans living overseas – the Diaspora.Some regard these conferences as “nothing but a vacation” for delegates attending from the US, Canada and the United Kingdom.The misunderstanding surrounding the conference may lie in its title. There possibly would be less criticism if the conferences were named, The Jamaican Conference for Diaspora Assistance.Essentially the conference is a forum and correlated exhibition of Jamaican private and public businesses, to attract investment and marketing support of Jamaican overseas,The conference is not a Jamaican Diaspora Conference in the real sense. It’s not a conference organized to address problems and issues that afflicts Jamaicans living overseas. Frankly, it would be impractical to place these issues on the agenda of a conference planned by Jamaicans and focusing on issues directly related to Jamaica,Reference is often made to the Israeli and Irish Diaspora as ideal examples of Diasporic organizations. A closer look at these two Diaspora depicts organized units that function autonomously. They effectively cope with the issues related to their respective Diaspora primarily in the US, through strong infrastructures. With their unified organizations, these Diaspora are better able to relate positively and pragmatically with their respective homelands.Jamaica needs help from its DiasporaIt’s no secret that Jamaica needs tremendous help in various areas. Most Jamaicans living overseas are comparatively better-off financially than those residing in Jamaica and are definitely in a better position to provide assistance in Jamaica’s continuous development. Therefore, one understands the Jamaican government making overtures to target this assistance, and a conference in Jamaica with members of the Diaspora as honored guests is one such method.Initiative rooted in JamaicaHistorically, the attempt to formalize relationships between Jamaica and its Diaspora, solidified in 2004. This was the initiative of the then Jamaican government led by Prime Minister Percival J. Patterson. It was never an initiative rooted within the Diaspora.The first Jamaican Diaspora Conference in Kingston in 2004 approved the establishment of a Jamaica Diaspora Advisory Board. The members were perceived as advisors to the government on how the Diaspora can assist the Jamaican government and institutions in meeting their objectives.Diaspora has its peculiar issuesHowever, the Diaspora has its own peculiar issues to deal with. These are not issue falling under the portfolio, or are the responsibility, of the Jamaica Diaspora Advisory board as it’s constructed. This board has little resources or terms of reference to solve matters directly related to the Diaspora.Delegates from overseas who attended this week’s conference expecting to find solutions to issues within the Diaspora would have been disappointed. This is not the purpose of the conference.Over recent years there have been discussion among Jamaicans in South Florida re the needs of the Diaspora in the US which revealed a litany of complaints. These include: The Diaspora not having its own television or radio station; the Diaspora not owning its own financial institution – bank or credit union; the absence of a unit to help Jamaicans migrating to the US assimilate into the America community; the absence of a focal physical unit that addresses the myriad issues that impact the Diaspora. Most of the complaints are valid, and if realistically addressed could serve to unify the Diaspora. The passionate expressions of need to address these complaints indicates there’s much work to be done within the Diaspora.Need to build formidable organization within the DiasporaThis work is not the responsibility of the Jamaica government, nor the Jamaica Diaspora Advisory Board. This work won’t be implemented successfully until the Jamaican Diaspora find it possible to build a formidable organization within the Diaspora with relevant leadership, human and financial resources.The great irony here is that if the Jamaican Diaspora communities were better organized, they could likely find themselves more able to coordinate and provide the support so badly needed by the Jamaican private and public sectors.While the recent Jamaica Diaspora Conference deliberated on ways in which the Diaspora can invest its resources to aid Jamaica’s development, the time is long overdue for the Diaspora to determine how it can be strengthened, and in turn improve the support it gives to Jamaica.last_img read more

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2017 CAF Confederations Cup: Super Sport United Through To Semis

first_imgSuper Sport United will next face the winner of the quarter-final tie between USM Alger of Algeria and Club Africain of Tunisia for a place in the 2017 CAF Confederations Cup. USM Alger won the first leg 1-0 ahead of Sunday’s second leg in Tunisia. Super Sport United have qualified for the semi-final of the 2017 CAF Confederations Cup after they eliminated their hosts Zesco United on away goals. FUS Rabat of Morocco are also through to the semi-final after their 5-4 penalty shootout win over hosts CS Sfaxien of Tunisia following a 1-1 aggregate scoreline. The first leg in South Africa had ended in a goalless draw with Zesco United favourites to qualify ahead of the second leg at the Lewy Mwanawasa Stadium but the South Africans secured an impressive 2-2 draw to seal a last four place on away goals rule.center_img The home side took a 5th minute lead through Ching’Andu before Thuso Phala equalised for Super Sport. David Owino gave Zesco the lead again and they had chances to extend their advantage before the aforementioned Phala struck an all important second goal in the dying stages of the game. The Moroccans had won the first leg 1-0 at home before succumbing to the same result in the second leg played in Tunisia. Penalties were thereafter needed to separate the two teams and it was FUS Rabat who emerged victorious after a 5-4 win. They will face the winner of the last eight tie between Al Hilal of Sudan and TP Mazembe of DR Congo. TP Mazembe are in the driving seat ahead of Sunday’s second leg in Lubumbashi having won the first leg 2-1 away in Sudan.Relatedlast_img read more

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Over? Gerard Pique and Shakira reportedly split.

first_imgAccording to various reports from Spanish and Colombian media, Barcelona defender, Gerard Pique(30) and Colombian pop singer, Shakira(40) have ended their seven-year relationship.Sources claim the relationship had been going through a rough patch for months and Shakira recently moved out of their home in Barcelona. Neither Pique nor Shakira have confirmed the widespread reports.The footballer and pop star were last seen together in public at Lionel Messi’s wedding to childhood sweetheart Antonella Roccuzzo in Argentina on the 30th of June.The couple met during the video filming of Shakira’s single “Waka Waka” (This Time for Africa), the theme song of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa and have two children, Milan(4) and Sasha(2).It has been a difficult week for Pique. The Barcelona defender was booed by fans of the Spanish national team on Monday for supporting Catalonia’s wish to secede from the rest of Spain.RelatedGerard Piqué: Five Things You Might Not Know About Barca StarJune 18, 2020In “Featured”Pique Extends Barcelona Contract Until 2022January 30, 2018In “Europe”Barcelona Star Reiterates Commitment To Spain Despite Catalan Independence SupportOctober 5, 2017In “Europe”last_img read more

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AITEO Cup Final: Abdu Maikaba Plays Down Top Dog Tag.

first_imgAkwa United coach Abdu Maikaba has dissociated himself from suggestions that his team are favourites in Sunday’s Aiteo Cup final clash with Niger Tornadoes.Maikaba, who has been in charge of the Akwa Ibom state-owned club for less than 12 months, acknowledged the thrill that winning a title in his maiden season would bring, but knows that victory can only be achieved through hard work. “I will be a very happy man to win a trophy in my first year in a club,” Maikaba noted in an exclusive chat with www.busybuddiesng.com.“That makes it so important to me. If I can go to a club and win a trophy in my first year, it is something to be happy about.“That is why we are not leaving anything. We are trying our best to make sure that at the end of the 90 minutes, we would come out victorious.”The ‘Promise Keepers’ have been in unstoppable form in this year’s competition, scoring 23 goals in 7 matches and conceding only 6. They also dispatched some of their opponents with unbelievable ease in the process. A 5-1 thomping of Shooting Stars in the round of 16, followed by a comprehensive 8-2 aggregate trashing of Katsina United Feeders in the quarterfinal, could not have been a quiet way of signifying intent.The 2015 champions also boast of the tournament’s leading scorer in Christian Pyagbara who has netted 7 times so far, including four in a match.Such credential has informed many stakeholders to pick the Uyo-based club as the odds-on favourites for the title.But Tornadoes, on the other hand, have been impressive in their own rights, felling two top NPFL sides en route the final. Coach Bala Abubakar’s side recorded impressive aggregate wins over reigning NPFL champions Plateau United in the quarterfinal, and Aiteo Cup holders FC Ifeanyi Uba in the last four.Most remarkable about their surprising run to the final was the incredible comeback from 2-0 down to beat Ifeanyi Uba 4-2 in their semifinal first leg clash in Lokoja; and Maikaba is quite aware of how much threat ‘Ikon Allah’ can pose. “I never consider our opponents as underdogs,” the former Wikki Tourist handler said.”The team that eliminated the league champions, the team that eliminated the Aiteo Cup holders can never be underdogs. They have passed through even more obstacles than our team, so it’s not going to be that easy.”Maikaba, however remains optimistic that his side’s potency in front of goal could prove decisive on the day.“The quality of my team is that we can score goals at any time. That I think will work for us in the final. We can at least score a goal that will win the game for us.  ”The Aiteo Cup final is billed for the Agege Stadium; which is the home ground of last season’s NPFL runners-up, MFM FC.In addition to representing Nigeria in next year’s CAF Confederation Cup, winners will take home a prize money of ₦25m while the runners-up will get ₦10m from the tournament sponsors, Aiteo Group.RelatedNPFL: Maikaba Backs Everton, Begs Akwa United Fans (AUDIO)January 25, 2019In “NPFl”NPFL: Emotional Maikaba Hopes For A “Beautiful Game” Against Everton’s Akwa United (AUDIO)January 23, 2019In “NPFl”Maikaba Pleased With Akwa United Performance Despite CAF Confed Cup Exit (Audio)April 19, 2018In “Africa”last_img read more

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The Big 7 Matches This Weekend

first_imgMillonarios vs. Deportivo CaliSaturday 12midnightHeading back to South America, Colombia’s Clasico Anejo takes place this weekend as Millonarios host Deportivo Cali in the final game of the season on Saturday night.The contest pits two of the most successful teams in Colombian football history against each other, although it is only Millonarios who have been competing for the title this season.Santa Fe currently lead the way and enjoy a five-point gap over fourth-place Millonarios – who at best can now only finish as high as third – whereas Deportivo find themselves down in 14th place and 10 points adrift of Saturday’s hosts having lost eight of their 19 league outings in the second half of the season.It represents a sharp decline for Deportivo, who were champions as recently as 2015, and they will be desperate to create something to cheer about with victory over the 14-time champions Millonarios in their own back yard.The form book suggests that will not be the case, though, with Deportivo having won just one of their last eight outings across all competitions and Millonarios losing only one of their last nine.Three of the last four meetings between these two sides have ended in 1-1 draws, but Deportivo are without a win at the home of their rivals since November 2013.Verdict: Millonarios win Liverpool vs SouthamptonSaturday 4pmLiverpool have had an indifferent start to the season but still find themselves high up the table. Saints manager Mauricio Pellegrino is coming under intense pressure as his side are not yet winning enough games.Injury NewsLiverpool – Lallana, Mane and Danny Ings all declared fitSouthampton – Mario Lemina (ankle)Stat Attack– These two sides met four times in all competitions last season with Liverpool failing to either win or score in all four contests (W0 D2 L2).– Southampton are unbeaten in their last five games in all competitions against Liverpool; they have never gone six in a row without defeat (W3 D2 L0)– Liverpool have conceded 30 goals via set-pieces in the Premier League since Jurgen Klopp took charge in October 2015 – only Watford (36), Stoke (32) and Crystal Palace (31) have conceded more– Jurgen Klopp has yet to beat Southampton in the Premier League, drawing three of his four matches as Liverpool boss (W0 D3 L1) – no side has he faced more without winning (also four vs Man Utd)Verdict: Draw Club football is back with hundreds of interesting football matches in different leagues all over the world for football fans after an uncharacteristically interesting international break.Here we will take a look at seven (7) random picks of the lot and preview with Key statistics, injury reports and possible results.Arsenal vs Tottenham HotspursSaturday 1:30pmThe 160th episode of the famous North London Derby kick-starts the return of the English premier league action this weekend and with the different stakes for either side going into the game, intrigues and excitement should not be in short supply.Injury NewsArsenal – Mustafi (Hamstring, hopeful), Welbeck (groin), Giroud (thigh), Cazorla (ankle).Spurs – Kane (Knee, hopeful), Alli (hamstring, hopeful), Winks (Ankle, hopeful), Lloris (groin)Key Stats– Spurs are currently unbeaten in the last 6 league meetings against Arsenal. Their longest ever unbeaten run against Arsenal in the league.– Mauricio Pochettino has yet to lose a Premier League north London derby (W2 D4 L0), though all three of his visits to the Emirates with Tottenham have ended level.– The Gunners have won their last 10 Premier League games at the Emirates, their longest ever such winning run at the stadium– Spurs have won only twice in their last 32 away trips to Arsenal– No fixture has produced more draws in the league than the North London Derby.Verdict: Spurs Win Roma vs LazioSaturday 6pmRoma will host local rivals Lazio in the Derby della Capitale this weekend as one of Europe’s most fiercely-contested derby matches enters its latest chapter.Just one point and one place separates the two sides in the Serie A table as things stand, with Lazio currently occupying the final Champions League spot and Roma hot on their heels.Key Stats– Roma have won their last five matches across all competitions and nine of their 11 outings in Serie A this season.– Roma have the best defensive record in the division with seven clean sheets so far.– Lazio are on a nine-match winning streak – their best run of form this century – and have dropped only five points all season.– Roma have won four of the last five Serie A meetings and only lost one of the last nine, although that did come in the corresponding fixture last season when Lazio ran out 3-1 winnersVerdict: Both teams to score Panathinaikos vs AEK AthensSunday 6:30pmThe hosts are under intense pressure and go into the Derby against fellow big side AEK needing to win more than their visitors do.Key Stats– Panathinaikos are 10 points adrift of the top after just 10 games (4W 3D 3L).– AEK are joint top with surprise package Atromitos who are aiming to be the first club to win the Greek league apart from AEK Athens, Panathinaikos or Olimpiacos since 1988.– AEK have kept four clean sheets in a row and have only lost two of their last 18 outings across all competitions– There have been three wins apiece for both teams and two draws in their last 8 league meetings.Verdict: AEK Athens win Other matches to keep an eye on are:-Omonia Nicosia vs APOEL Nicosia (Cyprus);Dinamo Zagreb vs Lokomotiva Zagreb (Croatia);Yeovil Town vs Swindon Town (England);Slavia Prague vs Dukla Prague (Czech Republic). RelatedWEEKEND PREVIEW: The BIG 7November 30, 2018In “Articles”The Big Seven Matches This WeekendDecember 29, 2017In “England”NLD Watch: Tottenham Receive Triple Boost Ahead Of Mammoth ClashNovember 16, 2017In “England” Atletico Madrid vs Real MadridSaturday 8:45pmThere is nothing to separate Atletico and Real heading into Saturday’s Madrid derby, with the two sides sitting level on points in La Liga after 11 matches of the season.Real Madrid are in the unfamiliar position of third place, though, and with eight points already separating them from arch-rivals Barcelona there is no margin for error on their first visit to the Wanda Metropolitano.Key Stats– Madrid have lost two of their last three matches in the League.-Atletico are unbeaten in eight and have lost just once in their 16 outings across all competitions this season, although nine of those matches have ended in stablemates.– Real won the corresponding fixture last season on their final league visit to the Vicente Calderon, but that is their only triumph in their last eight away games against AtleticoVerdict: Real Madrid win Gremio vs LanusThursday 12:45amThis match is not exactly a weekend game but considering how big a match it is, I could not leave it out of the list. Gremio host Atletico Lanus in the first leg of the Copa Libertadores final – the biggest match in South America.Gremio currently sit second in the Brazilian Serie A table and have overcome opposition from Venezuela, Chile, Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil and Ecuador already en route to the final, beating Barcelona 3-1 on aggregate in the semi-finals despite losing their home second leg 1-0.Lanus, meanwhile, produced a memorable comeback against fellow Argentine side River Plate in their own semi-final – at one stage trailing 3-0 on aggregate before scoring four unanswered goals to win 4-3 over the two legs.Lanus needed penalties to get past San Lorenzo in the quarter-finals and have already lost three times in this season’s competition, yet have still managed to make it to the final in their first Copa Libertadores campaign since 2014.Victory for Lanus over the two legs would see them lift the biggest prize in South American club football for the very first time, whereas Gremio are two-time Copa Libertadores champions but have not won it since 1995.Should the Brazilian outfit come out on top then they would join Sao Paulo and Santos as the most successful Brazilian teams in the competition’s history, 10 years on from losing in their last appearance in the final.Verdict: Both teams to scorelast_img read more

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Lightning Strikes Twice! Murray Splits From Coach Again

first_imgFormer world number one Andy Murray has split with coach Ivan Lendl again by “mutual agreement”.Their first stint together was from 2012 to 2014 when the Scot won Wimbledon, the US Open and Olympic gold.French coach Amelie Mauresmo replaced Lendl as Murray’s coach before he returned in 2016 and that provided the catalyst for a second Wimbledon title and a second Olympic gold in addition to his ascension to the world number one spot later that year.While speaking about the major step he has taken, Murray said: “I’m thankful to Ivan for his help and guidance over the years.”“We’ve had great success and learned a lot as a team. My focus now is on getting ready for Australia with the team I have in place and getting back to competing.” he added.Eight-time Grand Slam winner and former world number one Lendl, 57, added: “I wish Andy well. We had a great run and a lot of fun.”Murray has dropped to 16th in the world rankings due to the fact that he has been recovering from a hip injury with his last competitive match coming in July when he was beaten by Sam Querrey in their quarter-final clash at the 2017 Wimbledon Open.Amidst his injury woes, Murray was able to feature in a charity match against Roger Federer earlier this month. Relatedlast_img read more

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Betfair – Major money comes in for underdog McGregor after late rule change

first_img ‘Deal maker’ Rafi Ashkenazi ends Flutter tenure  August 27, 2020 Related Articles Betfair has revealed that the unwavering faith of punters in Conor McGregor earning a monumental victory has led to the odds on the Irishman dramatically shortening. Eight days out from the biggest boxing event in recent memory, the odds on McGregor defeating the man widely regarded as the most talented fighter of the 21st century, Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather are as short as 4/1.The unrelenting optimism of McGregor’s army of fans, was only elevated when it was announced that the Nevada State Athletic Commission approved a late request from both fighters to wear 8oz gloves, as opposed to the standard 10oz gloves normally worn in professional boxing. Katie Baylis, Spokesperson at Betfair, said: “The gloves announcement has had a huge impact on betting for the fight, with £1.5m wagered on the outcome alone since yesterday, taking the total close to a staggering £15m bet with more than a week still to go.“Not only has a lot of money been staked since yesterday, but we’ve also seen over 2,000 individual bets placed with 40% of those on McGregor to win which has seen his odds shorten to 4/1, the shortest they’ve been since the fight was announced, while Mayweather’s odds are at his longest yet at 1/4.“McGregor’s bold prediction that he will beat Mayweather Jr in two rounds now that 8oz gloves have been approved has garnered plenty of headlines around the world this morning and punters who are as confident as the Irishman of that eventuality can get odds of 12/1 for the fight to be all over before the bell rings for round three.” Share StumbleUpon Share Flutter moves to refine merger benefits against 2020 trading realities August 27, 2020 Submit Bookies Corner: Trump Presidency sinks as US 2020 enters its 100 day countdown July 29, 2020last_img read more

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Gunn Merete Paulsen: Lotteritilsynet will continue its toughest stance against remote actors

first_img Submit Norway’s Ministry of Culture seeks to end gambling’s triple guardianship  June 30, 2020 StumbleUpon Share Stats Perform becomes sole live streaming supplier for Norsk Tipping July 9, 2020 Lotteritilsynet raises NOK 30m for Norway’s distressed non-profits August 6, 2020 Related Articles Share Speaking to national media, Gunn Merete Paulsen, Director General of Lotteritilsynet – Norway’s gambling authority – has stated that the government’s tougher stance against foreign betting operators is working.Presenting Lotteritilsynet’s annual report, Paulsen details that in 2018 Norway saw its first decrease in remote gambling interactions/engagements following years of growth.Tougher measures introduced by the government including remote gambling payment blocks enforced on all Norwegian banks, has seen Lotteritilsynet report that wagering on unregulated online casinos by national consumers has declined to 10% from 30% recorded from 2014-17.Furthermore, Lotteritilsynet reports consumer declines in engagement, with remote bookmakers fulfilling its core mandate of protecting state-owned Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto gambling enterprises.“The payment ban enforcement is perhaps the best instrument we have to stop the illegal provisions of gambling in Norway,” said Paulsen. “In 2019, the regulations are further tightened through a regulatory change. We will gain better support to stop deposits for gambling.”Presenting a forward-looking statement, Paulsen underlines that in 2019 Lotteritilsynet will seek to bring a tougher advertising code on media owners with regards to broadcasting/publishing gambling-related content.Hen states that Lotteritilsynet has opened discussions with international media owners, seeking to prohibit gambling content being broadcast to Norwegian audiences regardless of jurisdiction.The regulator has warned international broadcasters TV3, ViaSat, MAX, VOX and Eurosport that cross-border programming and channels cannot feature gambling advertisement.At a digital level, Lotteritilsynet will continue to pressure Tech giants Apple and Facebook on restricting and removing apps/pages which are deemed to be targeting Norwegian national consumer with remote gambling services.Whilst Paulsen’s 2018 directives have proved effective, the Norwegian government has come under criticism of regulatory over-reach in its stance against online gambling.This February, Maarten Haijer, Secretary General of the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA), said that Lotteritilsynet has simply used national banks as its prohibitive measure, rather than pushing for an informed regulatory reform on Norwegian gambling.last_img read more

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BtoBet to kick off 2020 with Neuron 3 launch

first_img Submit BtoBet refines African SMS payment options with Tola Mobile  August 20, 2020 BtoBet grows Nigerian presence with Booster99 deal August 26, 2020 Share BtoBet grows LatAm portfolio with GlobalBet deal August 12, 2020 Related Articles StumbleUpon Share BtoBet is preparing to launch Neuron 3, the company’s 3rd generation iGaming single-solution platform which provides operators with all the necessary business management tools, APIs, widgets and content readily integrated. By using the platform, operators can focus on optimising the UX aspect of their business.The platform, which will be officially unveiled at ICE London, will also feature a unified betting experience across a wider, and digitally evolved channel selection. This, said BtoBet, gives operators the ability to adapt betting experiences to the specific needs of their players. Sabrina Soldà, BtoBet’s Chief Marketing Officer, stated that the launch of the Neuron 3 campaign marks the start of an interesting year ahead for BtoBet. She discussed how in 2020 the company is looking to cement its position as the advanced technological partner for bookmakers who are looking to build their UX according to target player data.“Most markets are evolving in such a way where differentiation amongst the competition is not only more and more sought for by the operators themselves in order to compensate for an increasingly saturated industry, but also at the same time more difficult to achieve due to technological constraints where in most occasions the end result of the whole UX is directly dependent and reflects the way in which the platform providers envisions the whole player journey,” said Soldà.“Neuron 3 is a definitive and significant step forward from this regard, with operators truly able to express and develop the player experience according to their target customers.”The new campaign has kicked off with a new concept which “envisions the flourishing of the platform’s core technology and depicts its metamorphosis throughout the various stages of the player’s journey”.last_img read more

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COVID-19: How the virus is impacting sports events across the globe

first_img Cloudbet elevates UFC 250 offering with in-play markets June 5, 2020 Parimatch extends UFC partnership July 9, 2020 Submit Share Olybet named NBA betting partner for the Baltics and Slovakia July 31, 2020 As the world comes to terms with the continually evolving threat of COVID-19, SBC focuses on how the outbreak is having a significant impact on sporting events across the globe. Football Following the UK Government’s decision not to ban major gatherings, in spite of much criticism, the English Premier League seemed intent on continuing to play out the fixture list and allow fans to visit the stadium. That was until Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta tested positive for the virus, soon followed by Chelsea player Callum Hudson-Odoi. The Premier League has since scheduled an emergency meeting for Friday morning to discuss plans, with high expectancy that the league will at least be suspended. The situation within the EFL is constantly evolving, however many are reporting that the league will follow the lead of the Premier League meaning suspension is highly likely. At the time of writing, the German Bundesliga will go ahead behind closed doors, although many observers are understandably pessimistic about the chances of finishing the season. The completion of Italy’s Serie A is in serious doubt and the league has been suspended, after Juventus’ Daniele Rugani and Sampdoria’s Manolo Gabbiadini both tested positive for the illness. The league is one of many within Europe that is shrouded in uncertainty, with a plethora of fixtures having already been postponed.  The Spanish La Liga joins the list of leagues that are currently suspended, with Real Madrid entering into a 15 day quarantine. It is also possible that UEFA could consider postponement of this Summer’s European Championship until next year.RacingFollowing Taoiseach Leo Varadkar’s announcement of school closures and restrictions on large gatherings across Ireland, the Board of Horse Racing Ireland has confirmed that all race meetings will take place behind closed doors, starting at Dundalk today.It follows Government advice issued this morning to contain the spread of COVID-19, including an instruction to limit external gatherings to less than 500 people, with the decision expected to last until 29 March.The restrictions will include: race meetings will be closed to the public with recommended social distancing measures implemented on track;  access will be restricted to essential service providers and industry participants; there will be no catering services, on course bookmakers or Tote services provided; and Racing will continue to be made available to broadcasters as at present.Brian Kavanagh, Chief Executive of Horse Racing Ireland, said: “It is important that horse racing acts responsibly and plays its part in the efforts to limit the spread of Covid-19. That is why we are announcing, with immediate effect, that horse racing fixtures in Ireland will continue between now and March 29th, but will be run behind closed doors with very restrictive access. “Race meetings will not be open to the public, in line with measures taken by other international racing jurisdictions, such as France, Hong Kong, Japan and Dubai.“Public health is the number one priority and these restrictions will continue to be kept under constant review as we liaise with our colleagues in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the Department of Health. “The restrictions which we are announcing today will limit social interaction but will allow a vital rural industry to continue to operate, protecting livelihoods and jobs.”Horse Racing Ireland has announced that racing in Ireland is closed to the public until March 29, beginning with the fixture @DundalkStadium tomorrow evening.Read the full story here:https://t.co/FFc9dsFiqF pic.twitter.com/3j4D44qaOP— Horse Racing Ireland (@HRIRacing) March 12, 2020MMA The global pandemic is likely to seriously hinder the busy schedule of the UFC, although reports are suggesting that this weekend’s event in Brasilia, Brazil is set to go ahead behind closed doors. Forthcoming events in Columbus and Portland are also likely to take place behind closed doors. The promotion also revealed that it is heeding the advice of the UK government and as of right now UFC London, which is set to take place a week from Saturday, is set to go ahead as normal.  Fans will be casting their eyes to the next PPV event, which takes place on 18 April and sees two of the sport’s most sought after talents, Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedom, collide in a fight that has been scheduled and subsequently fallen through on four previous occasions. Furthermore, Asia’s leading MMA promotion ONE Championship revealed that all its events will be closed-door, audience-free affairs effective immediately until at least 29 May, 2020. The firm emphasised that in making the decision it was placing the safety of its fans, athletes, staff and partners as a foremost priority. Chatri Sityodtong, the firm’s CEO stated on his social media: “For the millions of fans at home around the world, the show will go on from the comfort and safety of your living room. Our global broadcast shows behind closed doors will commence in Singapore with an initial schedule of April 17, April 24, May 1, and May 8 respectively. “Bout cards will be announced shortly for these broadcast-only shows, and additional dates will be added in the near future. Also, ONE Infinity Series, the world apex of martial arts events, is now slated to kick off on May 29, 2020 in Manila, Philippines with ONE Infinity 1 at the Mall of Asia Arena.“We are operating in truly extraordinary times, but my team and I remain committed to providing you the best sports and entertainment action available anywhere on global broadcast today. ONE Championship will continue to thrill you with the greatest martial artists on the planet and inspire you with their incredible stories. This virus might be on the attack right now, but I believe in the power of the human spirit.”Boxing The UK’s leading boxing promotion, Matchroom, has assured fans buying tickets that in the event of postponement refunds will be available. The firm was forced to delay two events due to take place in Italy. However, its next scheduled UK event takes place at the 02 Arena on 28 March. This opens a busy period for boxing. Over the next few months, Anthony Joshua, Dillian Whyte, Daniel Dubois and Dereck Chisora are all headlining separate pay per view events, something the sport will be hoping isn’t derailed by COVID-19. Across the pond, Top Rank’s events for Saturday and Tuesday headlined by Olympians Shakur Stevenson and Michael Conlan have both been postponed. BasketballThe National Basketball Association (NBA) has suspended its current season over fears that coronavirus will spread after Utah Jazz player Donovan Mitchell tested positive for the virus. The player was preliminarily tested positive prior to Jazz’s game against Oklahoma City Thunder at the Chesapeake Energy Arena. A spokesperson from the NBA stated: “The NBA is suspending gameplay following the conclusion of Wednesday’s schedule of games until further notice. The NBA will use this hiatus to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the coronavirus pandemic.”After monitoring COVID-19’s impact the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) revealed that its remaining winter and spring championships will be canceled until greater clarity is given on the impact the virus has on American society.NCAA said: “Today, NCAA President Mark Emmert and the Board of Governors canceled the Division I men’s and women’s 2020 basketball tournaments, as well as all remaining winter and spring NCAA championships. “This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to spread of the pandemic, and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during this academic year given ongoing decisions by other entities.”NCAA cancels remaining winter and spring championships: https://t.co/qzKAS4McEI pic.twitter.com/G6XreZx35E— NCAA (@NCAA) March 12, 2020TennisVarious tennis competitions such as the International Tennis Federation’s Fed Cup and the ATP Tour have been suspended.The ITF announced that next month’s Fed Cup finals, expected to be held in Budapest, has been postponed due to Hungarian authorities banning public gatherings of more than 100 people indoors.An ITF spokesperson stated: “After careful consideration and close discussion with the ITF Board, the Local Organising Committee, and in light of today’s announcement by the Hungarian government regarding indoor events, it is with regret that the ITF has announced the postponement of the Fed Cup Finals, originally scheduled to take place 14-19 April at the Laszlo Papp Sport Arena in Budapest.”Meanwhile the ATP Tour has postponed all play for six weeks in order to protect players and spectators from the virus. This follows on from the Miami Open being cancelled and the postponement of Indian Wells.ATP chairman Andrea Gaudenzi added: “It represents a great loss for our tournaments, players, and fans worldwide. However, we believe this is the responsible action needed at this time in order to protect the health and safety of our players, staff, the wider tennis community and general public health in the face of this global pandemic.“The worldwide nature of our sport and the international travel required presents significant risks and challenges in today’s circumstances, as do the increasingly restrictive directives issued by local authorities. We continue to monitor this on a daily basis and we look forward to the Tour resuming when the situation improves.”RugbyThe upcoming Super League match between Catalans Dragons and Leeds Rhinos is due to be played behind closed doors, amid COVID-19 concerns. At the time of writing, the game is still expected to be broadcast on Sky.“The clubs will comply with the restrictions placed upon them by the French government and other arrangements will be resolved between the two clubs,” the Rugby Football League said in a statement.“The RFL stresses that this was a difficult decision enforced by the current circumstances, and acknowledges and has sympathy with the impact it will have on the Catalans club.“The RFL will consult with Catalans regarding their other home fixture scheduled for the period covered by the decree, against Toronto Wolfpack on Saturday, April 11.”Six Nations games have also been affected by the virus outbreak, with Italy v Ireland, France v Ireland, Italy v England all postponed. The Women’s Six Nations game between Wales and Scotland was also postponed after a Scottish player was confirmed to have the virus.A statement on the tournament website read: “Six Nations and its constituent unions and federations will work closely to identify dates on which all postponed matches will take place.“No immediate announcement will be made on rescheduling as we will need to discuss with all relevant stakeholders and assess the evolution of the situation.”Formula 1The Australian Grand Prix, which was due to start in Melbourne this weekend, has been called off after teams and drivers forced the hand of Formula 1’s bosses.The news came after McClaren pulled out of the event after a team member was found to have Coronavirus. The news came alongside the confirmation that two members of the Haas Formula 1 team have also tested positive for the virus.Confirmation of the abandonment followed the submission of a letter from Mercedes requesting the cancellation of the race.Mercedes said: “We share the disappointment of the sport’s fans that this race cannot go ahead as planned. However, the physical and mental health and wellbeing of our team members and of the wider F1 community are our absolute priority.“In light of the force majeure events we are experiencing with regards to the coronavirus pandemic, we no longer feel the safety of our employees can be guaranteed if we continue to take part in the event.“If organisers try to press ahead with the weekend it appears at this stage as if not all the teams will take part.” Related Articles Share StumbleUponlast_img read more

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