9 April South Africa’s excellence in wheelchair tennis was celebrated at The Ability Challenge at iThembelihe Lsen School in Primrose, Germiston on Tuesday, with some of the country’s wheelchair stars taking on top players and celebrities in a team competition. The iThembelihe Lsen School is one of the development schools earmarked by Wheelchair Tennis South Africa to introduce and develop the game.Wheelchair tennis stars World number two in the quads division Lucas Sithole, number seven in the women’s rankings KG Montjane, and men’s number 15 Evans Maripa were among those in action. TV and radio anchor Robert Marawa acted as master of ceremonies and and a festive vibe of music, dance and top-class tennis entertained the 400-strong crowd, which included former First Lady Zanele Mbeki. Four teams – Expresso Brews, e-Flava, Power of 5 and Ten-Spiration – battled for title honours in the challenge, with each team consisting of a celebrity, a wheelchair tennis player and two able-bodied players.Winning team The winning team was Ten-Spiration, the SABC Morning Live team, which featured anchor Vaylen Kirtley, wheelchair tennis star Leon Els, Danie Visser – formerly a world number one in doubles – and tennis professional Michelle Sammons. They defeated the team of Expresso Brews – presenter Adrian Hogan, professional coach Holger Losch, Evans Maripa and professional player Madrie Le Roux – 4-3 in a thrilling final. Morning Live presenter Vaylen Kirtley said she was happy to have won the title with her team and was honoured to be part of the event. “What a great initiative and hats off to Airports Company South Africa and Wheelchair Tennis South Africa for putting the challenge together,” she said afterwards. “This sets the tone for the forthcoming Gauteng and SA Open events, which are sure to be a great success.”‘A shining example’ South African Davis Cup captain John-Laffnie de Jager, part of the Power of 5 team, said he felt honoured to be part of the day. “Wheelchair tennis in our country is a shining example of what a sporting code needs to do to encourage interest and participation,” he said. “The atmosphere was unbelievable and what great fun was had by all. I’ll be back, if invited again.” DJ Milkshake, another member of the Power of 5 team, was equally enthusiastic about the day. “That was really wicked! What a cool day, and I am real blessed to be part of it. Just a pity my team didn’t smack it,” he enthused. ‘This is so good for the game’ Former ATP professional and Davis Cup player Jeff Coetzee, who turned out for e- Flava team, said the Challenge was inspirational. “Tennis is such a fun loving sport, the game of a life time, and the game of love. Today we had tons of fun, saw players and fans of all ages, and everyone just loved the day. This is so good for the game. What tennis needs is more Ability Challenges,” he reckoned Members of South Africa’s Fed Cup squad – Natalie Grandin, Madrie Le Roux, Natasha Fourouclas and Michelle Sammons – also participated in the Challenge.‘Committed Unathi Batyashe of Airports Company South Africa, the sponsors of the event and of the two big forthcoming international wheelchair tennis tournaments, commented: “Disabled sport is globally becoming more recognised and Airports Company South Africa have earmarked wheelchair tennis as the disability code they are committed to supporting. “We were excited and delighted to have exposed more people to wheelchair tennis and to our top wheelchair players at the Ability Challenge. “We believe through the event more people appreciated the skills and performances of these players by watching them in action at iThembelihe Lsen School.” SAinfo reporter
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The National Agricultural Genotyping Center officially opens its doors with representatives from government and industry on hand for the grand opening of the new facility. Together North Dakota Ag Commissioner Goehring, Fargo Mayor Mahoney, legislative staff and agricultural association leadership discussed the center’s possibilities while touring the state-of-the-art laboratories.“This facility is the first of its kind for a farmer-led association, giving growers more influence on research agendas,” said Larry Hoffmann, chair of the Research and Business Development Action Team for the National Corn Growers Association. “NAGC will help growers increase production and lower costs. With so many stakeholders on hand and actively expressing interest, it was apparent to all present that the exciting potential for innovation is enormous and will lead to concrete results that can strengthen the bottom line for U.S. farmers.”The National Agricultural Genotyping Center will translate scientific discoveries, such as the information from the maize genome project, into solutions for production agriculture, food safety, functional foods, bioenergy and national security.The NAGC partnership brings together Los Alamos National Laboratory, the premier research institution in the world with a proven track record in developing high-throughput genotyping technology, and the National Corn Growers Association, an organization representing more than 42,000 farmer members.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Presented by Ritchie BrothersSee Day 1 results on the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop TourSee Day 3 results on the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop TourToday I take my annual shotgun seat next to Pro Farmer’s Brian Grete. This guy is all business on the road (except for the one year we did the Ice Bucket Challenge) and I always look forward to talking shop with Brian and watching his Iowa-esque pointer finger wave as other farmers drive by.He’s not a very tall fella and he has a fear of getting lost in tall soybean fields, which we will likely see today. Needless to say, I will be sampling beans.Here are the final results for the entire eastern leg of this year’s Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour for Indiana.Corn –173.42 bushels to the acre.Soybeans – 1178.41 pods in 3X3 foot square.McLean County, IllinoisWe are seeing a little bit of lodging and wind damage here in this corn field. The ears were over 7 inches in length, on average, and we had one 22 around. This field is pegged at 223 bu/a. Half of the fields we checked today in Illinois had a number that began with a 2.Soybeans at our last stop of the day became our best stop of the day. We are seeing lodging here too as beans are close to 5 feet tall. These beans had a pod count of 2335 in a 3 by 3 square.McLean County, IllinoisMcLean County, IllinoisMcLean County, IllinoisFord County, IllinoisThis corn was about 3 weeks behind what we’ve seen for the majority of the tour. Tip-Back is just now starting to set in. It probably won’t be as good at harvest, but our number for this field is 216.Beans were thin and nothing to look at. The root system was great, but that’s about it. Our pod count here is 686 in a 3 foot square.Ford County, IllinoisFord County, IllinoisLivingston County, IlliniosThese ears are big but each ear was 14 around and there were skips in each row. Yields here will be around 168.Soybean population was low here with many skips in the sample row. Pod count here was 630.Livingston County, IlliniosVermillion County, IllinoisCrossed the state line to find our best corn field of the week! This field is full of baseball bats and clocks in at an amazing 235 bushels to the acre.Soybeans were right on part with what we’ve seen today at 1135 pods in a 3 by 3 square.Vermillion County, IllinoisBenton County, IndianaMore decent fields here but not as good as our previous two. Two stops in this county put our average at 163 with one sample of ears varying greatly.Soybeans at our two stops averaged 1075 pods in a 3 foot square.Benton County, IndianaBenton County, IndianaWarren County, IndianaGot into two great fields of corn here but also found Diplodia in our second field. Average for this county was 210.Pod counts for our two bean fields average 1210. Beans are getting much taller here.Warren County, IndianaWarren County, IndianaWarren County, IndianaTipton County, IndianaThe initial stop of the day took us to a good corn field. This was the highest population I have seen so far this week and the ears were filled nicely. No disease or pest pressure noticed. Our yield guess here is a whopping 211.Soybeans were a little weedy but overall very strong in the stalk and looking well on their way to a decent harvest. Our 3 x 3 pod count is 1485.Tipton County, IndianaTipton County, IndianaTipton County, IndianaTipton County, IndianaClinton County, IndianaThis corn field was the case of things looking better from the road. Our 129 yield estimate is due to a very low ear county and one of the sample ears being a runt.The soybeans here look excellent. Even with a high stalk count in our 3 foot row, these beans are performing exceptionally well. Our pod count in a 3 foot square is 1626, the best I’ve seen this week.Clinton County, IndianaClinton County, IndianaClinton County, IndianaTippecanoe County, IndianaThe corn field here had some more disease pressure than I have seen this week and there were also a fair number of hanging ears. Stalk issues aren’t dire but will need to be watched, for sure. Our yield estimate here was 192.This soybean stand looked like carpet and was extremely healthy. We are getting into some 30 inch rows here. Our pod count in a 3 x 3 square was 773.Tippecanoe County, IndianaTippecanoe County, Indiana
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Todd NeeleyDTN Staff ReporterOMAHA (DTN) — As flood waters continue to recede in the east and the dig out continues from a recent blizzard in the west, the agriculture tally from the worst disaster in Nebraska’s history may go on for months to come.The state’s Agriculture Director Steve Wellman told reporters on Monday evening that early estimates are the hit to the state’s livestock sector may be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.“We’re looking at a $400 million impact to livestock — mostly beef,” he said, “and with spring planting there will be delays. It’s hard to know what it really amounts to. As for a number of acres, we haven’t tried to do.”At the peak of the flooding, Nebraska Department of Transportation Director Kyle Schneweis said there were 79 highways closed accounting for 1,568 miles.As of Monday, that number and been whittled down to about 540 miles. In addition, there wasn’t a single flood rescue request in the state on Monday after a several-day total of 163.Nebraska Emergency Management Agency Assistant Director Bryan Tuma said the state has filed a request for an expedited federal disaster declaration.“This event has been overwhelming,” he said. “We have little doubt that we qualify.”Tuma said state officials will meet with Federal Emergency Management Agency officials in Kansas City on Tuesday, to discuss the state’s expedited application for both public and individual federal disaster assistance. This is just the second time in the state’s history it has applied for individual assistance, the first being in 2011 with the Missouri River flooding.The hope is the request will move quickly to President Donald Trump’s desk for a signature. Tuma said once approved, the state will begin a full assessment of the damage.“We’ve never had an event like this in the history of our state,” Tuma said.Though floodwaters are receding in northeast Nebraska, flooding from the Missouri River already has reached 2011 levels in the southeastern tip of the state.Nebraska State Patrol Colonel John Bolduc said as a result of Interstate 29 closing in southwest Iowa and northwest Missouri, Nebraska Highway 75 in the Nebraska City area is taking the brunt of truck traffic.In the Plattsmouth area, in the state’s southeastern corner, the Missouri River has flooded to a level already exceeding the 2011 disaster.“In Plattsmouth, it took 108 days to drop (in 2011),” Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts said, “and the water there now is higher.”Ricketts said though waters are receding, there still is a lot of work to do.“This is going to take a while,” he said.“Eleven bridges are completely gone. It is going to be a months’-long process. I expect you’ll see Nebraska pulling together. There also will be hundreds of homes damaged and I suspect we’ll be working (to recover) through the course of the year.”HITS TO AGRICULTUREState officials said the state’s agriculture sector is seeing many disruptions as a result of road closures.Wellman said dairies in eastern Nebraska have seen delivery drivers travel 100 to 150 miles out of the way to and from dairies. Many agriculture businesses are finding it difficult to receive supplies to continue operations, he said.At the moment, state officials are focused on flood damage to highways, and have been in contact with county officials about the extent of damage to county roads.Wellman said many of the state’s farmers and ranchers will continue to see travel disruptions on county roads.“It’s extreme,” he said about the damage. “This will be a long-term project to rebuild what’s been damaged.”Based on early assessments, Wellman said detours will cause farming operations to incur an additional $1 million per day in transportation costs statewide.As of Monday, in addition to bridges lost, Schneweis said there is about 200 miles of highways that either require repairs or complete reconstruction.“It will require significant investment,” he said. “We expect the damages statewide to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. We ask that people stay patient. We are making progress and will need more patience.”Once the flood waters recede, Schneweis said officials will inspect roadways and reopen those deemed to be safe.Getting a handle on the extent of the damage to county roads, however, may take some time.“There are some counties that might have 1,000 miles of county roads to assess,” Schneweis said.As the state begins to add up the damage to roads, he said the rebuilding plans going forward will depend on each individual situation.For example, Nebraska Highway 12 that travels over the Niobrara River in the northern part of the state was completely washed away. Prior to the devastation, the state had been studying the future of Highway 12 that has a history of flooding, Schneweis said.Now that the highway is no more, he said the state will look at perhaps making a significant investment in complete replacement.“The detour up there is an hour long,” Schneweis said.Todd Neeley can be reached at [email protected] him on Twitter @toddneeleyDTN.(ES)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.
Uruguay ‘Suarez was treated like a dog’ – Godin still frustrated by ‘unjust’ biting ban for Barcelona star Chris Burton 17:29 6/15/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(4) Getty Uruguay Luis Suárez Egypt v Uruguay Egypt World Cup Uruguay’s experienced defender feels his international team-mate was unfairly punished following an infamous tussle with Giorgio Chiellini in 2014 Luis Suarez’s ban for biting Giorgio Chiellini at the 2014 World Cup still rankles with his Uruguay team-mates, as Diego Godin says the “unjust” punishment saw the Barcelona striker “kicked out like a dog”.FIFA suspended the fiery frontman for nine international games and from all football activity for four months following his infamous coming together with an Italian defender during a group stage game.Suarez was able to secure a big-money transfer from Liverpool to Barcelona while stuck on the sidelines, but his World Cup was prematurely brought to a close and he missed out on the 2015 Copa America. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Out of his depth! Emery on borrowed time after another abysmal Arsenal display Diving, tactical fouls & the emerging war of words between Guardiola & Klopp Sorry, Cristiano! Pjanic is Juventus’ most important player right now Arsenal would be selling their soul with Mourinho move Godin believes authorities came down too hard on the 31-year-old, despite his previous misdemeanours, with Uruguay’s collective dreams dashed as they went on to lose 2-0 to South American rivals Colombia in the last 16.The Atletico Madrid defender told The Guardian: “I’m convinced that if what happened against Italy hadn’t happened it would have been a different story.”First, we lost our best player. Second, everything that happened affected us: it affected Luis and the rest of us. It was very hard to live through that, to see him dead, crying, fallen, kicked out of the World Cup.”The whole country was sunk, indignant – and that was all we talked about until the Colombia game.”Godin added on the Suarez incident which led to him being removed from the Uruguay camp: “I’m not going to say he didn’t make a mistake – he’s admitted that himself – but I still feel the same as most Uruguayans, most people in football who look at it objectively. It was very, very, very unjust.”For an ‘assault’ you get maybe four games. They took him out the World Cup, kicked him out like a dog. He wasn’t allowed at the Copa América. It was disproportionate, unjust, and no one will take that indignation from us.”While Suarez has made unfortunate headlines on a regular basis throughout his career, Godin believes that it is his enigmatic personality on the field which has carried the prolific goalscorer to the very top of the game.He added: “Luis has got where he is because of the way he is: you see he gets angry, wound up, he fights, protests, competes.“If he wasn’t like that, he wouldn’t be the player he is.” Suarez will be back on a World Cup stage on Friday when Uruguay open their Russia 2018 campaign against an Egypt side still hoping to have Mohamed Salah within their starting XI.
Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, toured the completed Barbican Road Upgrade Project today (June 1).The US$4.4 million project was done under the Major Infrastructure Development Programme (MIDP).The works at Barbican entailed significant widening and upgrading in the vicinity of the Barbican Centre, which is expected to alleviate congestion in the area.The Prime Minister said the Barbican and other upgraded roads have been designed with law enforcement in mind.“We have built into them technology. These areas will be monitored with the latest sensors and cameras. We are not building roads to make it easier for criminals to do what they do. These roads are built to make it harder for criminals,” he said.The Prime Minister noted that the technology will enable the police to identify licence plates; identify individuals facially; and track persons through road crossings.“If you are about to commit a crime, don’t drive through here,” he warned, in reference to Barbican Road, pointing out that this will be replicated throughout Jamaica, “because we must get on top of the criminals.”The Barbican project is one of several legacy road projects under the MIDP which the Prime Minister visited in Kingston and St. Andrew.He also toured the Constant Spring Road Improvement project; Mandela Highway Realignment and Reconstruction project; and the Hagley Park Road Improvement projectThe legacy projects are aimed at significantly improving the targeted roadways to facilitate seamless travel by the commuting public. The Prime Minister noted that the technology will enable the police to identify licence plates; identify individuals facially; and track persons through road crossings. Story Highlights The legacy projects are aimed at significantly improving the targeted roadways to facilitate seamless travel by the commuting public. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, toured the completed Barbican Road Upgrade Project today (June 1).