Holmwood Technical High, the Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association rural senior champions, will be seeking their eighth all-island title today when the 2015 season comes to an end today with the national finals at Clarendon Park in May Pen. Action starts at 1 p.m. with the junior final between Denbigh and Gaynstead. The senior final will follow between Holmwood and Camperdown, the urban champions. It should be an epic encounter between seven-time Holmwood and Camperdown. Holmwood will start favourites after they scored a one-sided win over Titchfield High in the rural finals. Camperdown, on the other hand, were pushed to extra-time by St Hugh’s. Both coaches are upbeat going into today’s encounter. “We do not expect anything less than a victory,” Holmwood’s coach, Carlene Graham-Powell, said. She added: “Our girls play hard every time they take the court, and I expect another good game from them, and I have no doubt that they will be victorious today.” Goal shooter Tracyann Francis of Holmwood was outstanding in the rural senior final and will be a key player for Holmwood today. A majority of the Camperdown players have been playing together for the past five years and four have represented the country at the junior level. Coach Wayne Stewart thinks this is a plus for his team. “We did not see Holmwood on Tuesday … but our girls are ready for the occasion. They have played together for a number of years and have gelled well, and we are confident that Camperdown will win their first all-island title,” Stewart said. Goal shooter Idara McCarthy and goal attack Ramona Lawrence will be key players for Camperdown. Denbigh will be appearing in the junior final for a third straight final, and after losing back to back to Queen’s, they will be hoping to win against first-time finalists Gaynstead. “Our team is a very young one … but I expect them to win and make up for their disappointment in the past two years where they lost to Queen’s,” said Janice Walker, coach of Denbigh. Sports coordinator Derrick Brown of Gaynstead is also looking forward to a victory for his girls. “The girls are very confident and I have no doubt in my mind that they will win. As long as they stay focused and follow instructions, they should go all the way,” said Brown.
The national media has a funny habit of over-simplifying complicated topics.Most of the time, they do so as to create overarching segment questions — Is Russell Wilson the MVP? Are the Seahawks Super Bowl contenders? Were the 49ers exposed? — but on Tuesday, it seemed that commentators at ESPN, Fox, and NBC decided to play the blame game.They claimed Jimmy Garoppolo lost Monday night’s game for the 49ers. … CLICK HERE if you are having a problem viewing the photos or video on a mobile device
8 August 2003There has never been a boxing champ as small as South African boxing giant Jacob “Baby Jake” Matlala. At just 4ft 10in or 147cm, he is not much taller than the average 3ft 6in or 107cm tall Lord of the Rings hobbit.This, he tells me, as I feel like a giant looking down on him from my 5ft 8in (in heels) or 173cm, is part of the reason why he quit boxing at the age of 40 last year. He had run out of small people to fight.In a career that spans 30 years, he has always fought boxers of the same weight – flyweight – but who were taller than him. But flyweight fighters have all retired, and the next generation are still in training. He says: “There were no big names left to fight”.Was it a case of a small man doing a big sport to compensate for his height? Not at all. An only child and born in Meadowlands, Soweto, he learnt boxing from his father, who used to box for relaxation. So when the young Matlala went to the gym at the age of 10, he knew the basic moves, and slipped into the gym boxing culture very easily.Matlala has a vital energy about him, a ready smile and a relaxed confidence, which boils down to him quietly bubbling with charm. It’s easy to understand, when meeting him one on one, why people approach him in shopping malls or at the movies or when he goes to a restaurant, and greet him like an old friend. He is never impatient with his fans, and they are everywhere – he is always ready to stop and talk, and give them that smile.“Height is not an issue, it’s in the mind,” he says. Because of his height, his modis operandi in the ring is carefully worked out: “I work the body, then the head will come.” By that he means that he constantly throws punches at his opponent’s body until he tires, then the head drops, and that’s when Matlala gets his final punches in.The evidence is there – in 1996 in Las Vegas he left opponent Michael Carbajal a beaten man after nine rounds, with both eyes badly cut.And, says Matlala, he has perfected a punch that is unique to him, because of his height: “I hit over-arm, it’s my best punch.” And of course, he’s learnt to avoid his opponent’s punches, and throw more punches.The record books are proof that he knows his stuff: 52 wins, two draws and 12 losses over his career, with four world titles to his name – the World Boxing Organisation flyweight title in 1993, the light flyweight title in 1995, the International Boxing Association junior flyweight title in 1997, and the World Boxing Union flyweight title in 2001.Matlala believes that boxing is an art. Boxers must be smart and enjoy the sport, and never fight outside the ring. “Mike Tyson just wants to kill, he isn’t a smart boxer.”Just for the record, “flyweight” means that the boxer weighs in at 50kg. But now, out of training and retired, Matlala weighs in at 59kg. He says that when still boxing, it would take him two months to get to the right weight: “The first month is used to drop weight, the second month to prepare tactics.” In addition, he would monitor his diet.Those tactics extend to “persistence and having a good plan”. In 1983 he won the South African flyweight title, but lost it the same year to Vuyani Nene. It took him seven years to beat Nene, losing to him four times in the interim.DisciplineFor Matlala, more important than these aspects of his training is “discipline, dedication and positiveness”. He doesn’t drink or smoke, and used to get to the Dube Boys Boxing Club – now the revamped Dube Recreation Centre – at 5.30am, skip for half an hour to warm up, and be ready for boxing training by 6am.He is impatient of those who are not disciplined in their training. “Now they get to the gym at 5.45am, and are not ready to start training at 6am as they haven’t warmed up yet.”His recounts that his wife of 13 years says that he won’t be good at training young boxers because he has a problem with people who are not disciplined. But that’s hard to believe – he is very good-natured and generous, particularly to his fellow Johannesburgers. Besides training youngsters at Dube gym, he gives talks on motivation and discipline, on Aids awareness, and promotes boxing.He recently gave a motivation talk to a group of policemen in Hillbrow, talking particularly about discipline. He talks to youngsters in Soweto, also to street kids in the city, about Aids. He is an official City Aids ambassador.His message reflects his disciplined philosophy on life – he preaches abstinence. “It worked for me and my wife. We courted for eight years, I paid lobola in 1988, and we got married in 1990.” He discourages young people from living together. “You must have pride and family values – we lack them these days,” he says.UpbringingHe had a very ordinary upbringing. “My parents taught me to be focused. I went to school in Soweto; when I came home I did household chores.” He went to Wits University after school, but completed his BCom degree at Unisa.When he started boxing, his father encouraged him. His mother didn’t – she worried that he’d get injured and possibly killed in the ring.Matlala is also involved in Johannesburg’s “Project 100 Spots”, an illegal dumping pilot project in Soweto. Along with other city celebrities, like Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse, he has been appointed champion of the project.He donates pairs of boxing gloves for auction to various charities. He says: “Whatever I have I share with others. I love kids; if I had serious money I would sponsor kids.”Matlala has two boys, aged 13 and six, who enjoy sport, but he is not pushing them to box. But they do watch it on TV.His role models in the boxing world are Sugar Ray Leonard, Joe Frazier and Muhammed Ali. “These boxers are not big-headed, they always keep a low profile.” Another role model is Nelson Mandela. The reason? “He is so humble and forgiving.”He is celebrated in his hometown in other ways. There’s a Baby Jake’s Diner in the Carlton Centre in the CBD, open since 1997. There used to be four Baby Jake Diners around town, but the others closed. Baby Jake does patronise the restaurant, but he says it is “always full”.At some outlets you can buy Baby Jake ice cream, and there used to be a soft drink available called Baby Jake. His famous nickname also appeared on a roll-on deodorant and razor blades.Writers Jack Blades and Theo Mthembu made their contribution with their biography, Baby Jake the legend.Johannesburg manMatlala is very much a Jo’burg man. He describes the city as the “best place”: “everything is happening here – boxers get sponsorship here, they train here, they live here”.He has broadened his sporting achievements: in 2001 he did the 120km Dusi Canoe Race; in 2001 he ran the Soweto Marathon; and this year he did the 90km Comrades Marathon as a celebrity. He’s planning to do the 2004 Comrades race more seriously, and the 56km Two Oceans race.There’s another aspect to his life: religion. He says he prays before every fight. “My wife taught me to give the glory back to the Almighty. One person is chosen by the Almighty to be outstanding. There is time for everything, God will know, we must wait our turn.”In the future he sees himself being a top businessman with his own brand of sports merchandise, including gloves, caps and t-shirts.I ask him what his favourite book is. It’s no surprise when he says it’s Anthony Robbins’ Awaken the giant within.Source: City of Johannesburg website Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
The Indian contingent is still awaiting a communication from the Olympic Games organisers on how an unidentified lady was allowed to gatecrash into the team’s march past at the Opening Ceremony even as media reports claimed to have identified the “mystery woman”.The Indians have submitted a letter on this embarrassing issue to the organisers on Saturday night and acting Chef-de-Mission Brig P K Muralidharan Raja said that no response has come yet.”We have submitted the letter expressing our strong resentment on the matter to the organisers last night. We are still waiting for their response,” Raja said.A day after photos of the ‘mystery woman’ appeared in newspapers and went viral on social networking sites, a newspaper claimed to have identified the young lady as Madhura Honey, a post-graduate from Bangalore.Deccan Chronicle, quoting sources, said that her friend from the college was also baffled seeing her with the Indian contingent. She has been living in London and before she went with the Indian team, she had displayed her Olympic passes on her Facebook account. But once this became an issue, she had deactivated her Facebook account.The Indian contingent, however, was willing to wait for an official confirmation about the identity of the person.”I am also aware of these reports. But I can’t comment on newspaper reports. We want something from the organisers,” Raja said.The young lady in red shirt and blue trouser was seen leading the Indian contingent in the march past alongside Beijing Games bronze medallist Sushil Kumar and her unwanted presence has not gone down well with the Indians, who had no clue as to who she was.advertisement
New Delhi, Dec 5 (PTI) The standing committee of the BJP-led north corporation Thursday passed a resolution seeking “compensation of Rs 1 crore” for each of the families of the persons who have recently died due to accidents on the Signature Bridge here, the civic body said. The North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) in its resolution also alleged that the bridge was “inaugurated without finishing the entire work” leading to accidents. “The Standing Committee resolves that a compensation of Rs 1 crore each for the next of kin of the persons who have died in accidents on Signature Bridge and and Rs 25 lakh each for those who have been injured,” the resolution read.Two men were killed in November after they fell off the newly-constructed Signature Bridge here when their sports bike rammed into a divider, police had said.Initially, it was suspected that the victims were performing stunts. However, police in their investigation had ruled out that angle.A day after two motorcycle-borne medical students were killed on the iconic bridge, another person died when his bike skidded on the bridge.The committee also resolved that a “probe committee” be set up to investigate those who allowed the bridge to be inaugurated, and its report be sent in one month to the Lt Governor of Delhi. PTI KND KJ
Share on Twitter Pinterest Read more Blaise Matuidi and Paul Pogba have had quietly effective tournaments, complementing Kanté with their own midfield intelligence, mobility and ability on the ball. Even Hugo Lloris has proved stronger than expected, producing perhaps the save of the tournament when he spectacularly denied Uruguay defender Martin Caceres in the quarter-final.With the World Cup already 28 teams down, France might just be the favourites from among the final four. If they are to squeeze past Belgium on Tuesday night and see off England or Croatia on Sunday, Deschamps may rely on less heralded components of his squad: his belligerent, combative, street-fighting defence. With France carefully navigating their way through the tournament so far, it might be the pragmatic ruthlessness of Hernández and Kanté rather than the flair of Mbappé and Griezmann that takes them all the way.• This is an article from Get French Football News• Follow Adam White and Get French Football News on Twitter I knew Benjamin Pavard was good but he has reached new heights in Russia Much of the discussion in France this summer has been about how Didier Deschamps can squeeze all of his attacking talent into an effective unit. In his attempts to bring the best out of his forwards, the manager has drifted from a 4-4-2 to a 4-3-3 to a diamond, before arriving back at an asymmetrical 4-4-2. All the while, France’s most consistent players have not been Antoine Griezmann, Olivier Giroud or even Kylian Mbappé, but their defenders. A resolute, physical display from the back four helped the team overcome a dogged – if Edinson Cavani-less – Uruguay. France will look to Mbappé and Griezmann to score the goals that take them past Belgium and into the final, but the team’s defence is fast becoming the real star of the show.Didier Deschamps’ backline looked very different a year ago. Benjamin Mendy and Djibril Sidibé started at full-back in their three games last June – a 5-0 thrashing of Paraguay, a tough World Cup qualifier against Sweden and a 3-2 win over England where they played with 10 men for 45 minutes. Having proved crucial to Monaco in their glorious run to the Ligue 1 title, Mendy and Sidibé looked likely to take the full-back positions for France for the foreseeable future. The width, balance and crossing ability they provided was seemingly crucial to Deschamps’ plans. World Cup Get French Football News Umtiti has been promoted to the first XI in place of Koscielny and his physicality has made France’s defence even more imposing. They dealt with an admittedly weakened Uruguay attack comfortably on Friday. Varane in particular proved invaluable. His deft glancing header gave France the lead and his pace and intelligence helped prevent Luis Suárez from having a single shot all game. He did not even have a touch in the France box.The 2-0 win over Uruguay was France’s third clean sheet in their five games so far. The only goal they conceded in the group stage was Mile Jedinak’s penalty for Australia in the opening game and two of the three goals they conceded in the 4-3 win over Argentina were almost unpreventable – Lionel Messi’s deflected shot and Ángel Di María’s screamer.Much of the credit for Deschamps’ frugal defence must go to the midfield. N’Golo Kanté has been France’s premier performer and perhaps even the player of the tournament. His characteristically understated performances may not be showy enough to win the golden ball, but his dominance of games is respected back home. On Saturday L’Équipe sang: “Les Bleus can congratulate themselves every day for having him with them.”Kanté’s dynamism, assuredness in possession and ability to nullify attacks before they become dangerous is crucial to this team. He glues together a midfield that has evolved into a somewhat jagged, if effective, set-up where Mbappé is given far more freedom on the right flank than Blaise Matuidi or Corentin Tolisso are afforded on the left. Without Kanté, France may not have come this far. Facebook Facebook Share on Facebook Uruguay N’Golo Kanté has been France’s best player. Photograph: MB Media/Getty Images Belgium Deschamps’ centre-back slots seemed a little less certain. Had Laurent Koscielny not ruptured his Achilles tendon while playing for Arsenal against Atlético Madrid in May, that might still be the case. Koscielny was seen as an important player who could keep a potentially combustible squad united. He was also the only centre-back in the squad who played in all three of those matches last June. With Koscielny injured and both Mendy and Sidibé lacking fitness, Deschamps has gone with a back four of Benjamin Pavard, Samuel Umtiti, Raphaël Varane and Lucas Hernández at the World Cup. While Mendy and Sidibé are very attack-minded, their replacements are at the other end of the spectrum. As versatile and natural defenders, they have provided the team with a more compact, bullish and combative rearguard.Staying true to his schooling at Atleti under Diego Simeone, Hernández has scrapped and niggled his way through the World Cup, winning few friends but remaining undeniably effective and among France’s most consistent players. Pavard meanwhile, having looked nervous against Australia, has grown into the tournament. He is showing a defensive intelligence that blossomed as part of a Stuttgart back three during an impressive top half-finish upon their return to the Bundesliga. His wonderstrike against Argentina remains a leading contender for goal of the tournament. Quiz: World Cup semi-finals Twitter World Cup 2018 Thomas Hitzlsperger France’s attacking trident remains a little flat-footed. Mbappé’s put in an explosive display against Argentina, but maintaining such a high level over 90 minutes remains a skill the precociously talented 19-year-old is yet to master consistently. Griezmann has three goals so far – two penalties and a goalkeeping error – but he looks fatigued and is yet to light up this tournament like he did in the latter stages of Euro 2016. Similarly, Olivier Giroud is a crucial focal point for the team who creates space for his colleagues, but he is a little on the fringes and is yet to score. This may be something of an omen for France. Bernard Lacombe and Stephane Guivarc’h played similarly supporting roles and neither of them scored when France won tournaments in 1984 and 1998, respectively. Share on Messenger France Benjamin Pavard scores a beautiful goal against Argentina in Kazan. Photograph: Saeed Khan/AFP/Getty Images Topics Read more Reuse this content Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Share on Pinterest Pinterest features Share on WhatsApp Twitter