March 16, 2020
  • 10:54 am PCB wants Windies for day-night Test
  • 4:35 pm WADA to probe new doping reports
  • 1:45 pm Bolt waves off Gatlin threat
  • 1:39 pm Warriors set record for assists in big NBA win
  • 1:36 pm No position on bleaching – ISSA

first_imgCousins’ triple-double powers Pelicans past Cavs View comments Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving (11) looks for an open teammate past Miami Heat forward Bam Adebayo (13) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017, in Miami. Irving scored nine of his 24 points in the final 2:03, and the Celtics extended their winning streak to four games after holding on late to beat the Heat, 96-90. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)MIAMI — Kyrie Irving has done a lot of things in Miami: relaxation, offseason workouts, even the filming of an “Uncle Drew” commercial.Something he hadn’t done there? Win.ADVERTISEMENT It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson Jo Koy: My brain always wants to think funny LATEST STORIES Margot Robbie talks about filming ‘Bombshell’s’ disturbing sexual harassment scene Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Jayson Tatum scored 20 and Marcus Smart added 16 for the Celtics, who beat Miami for the eighth consecutive time. And afterward, Tatum marveled at Irving’s closing flurry.“It was weird because I’ve seen it on TV so many times,” Tatum said. “And I just saw it in person. I liked it.”Goran Dragic scored 22 points for Miami, which got 16 apiece from Josh Richardson and James Johnson. Former Boston forward Kelly Olynyk had 14 points and nine rebounds for the Heat, who were 7 for 31 from 3-point range.At 2-3, and mindful of how last season’s 11-30 start cost Miami a playoff spot, the Heat already sound anxious to get things fixed.“I don’t want to have a season like last year, when it’s late and we figure out things,” Dragic said. “We’ve got to do it now, because it’s important.”ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ MOST READ Miami was held under 100 points for the first time this season. Boston outscored Miami 53-37 in the middle two quarters — holding the Heat to 39 percent shooting from the field and 19 percent from 3-point range during that 24-minute span. But the big problems that Spoelstra was unhappy about postgame were Boston’s edges in points off turnovers (21-13) and second-chance points (21-9).UP NEXTCeltics: Host San Antonio on Monday, looking to snap an 11-game losing streak to the Spurs.Heat: Host Minnesota on Monday, the fifth game in this six-game homestand.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Kiss-and-tell matinee idol’s conquests: True stories or tall tales? 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 Miami was down 11 going into the fourth, then got within two on a pair of occasions late — when Irving got rolling.He hit a short floater to put Boston up 88-84, and after Dragic scored to cut the Celtics’ lead to two again, Irving pulled off one of his acrobatic reverse layups to restore the four-point edge.And on a possession extended by a Boston offensive rebound, Irving’s 3-pointer with 57 seconds left made the margin 93-86.“That’s what he is,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “He’s a great closer in this game.”TIP-INSCeltics: Boston has won five straight in Miami, matching the longest such streak in franchise history. … The Celtics aren’t sure if Marcus Morris (sore left knee) will be able to play when they return home Monday, but coach Brad Stevens thinks Morris will be ready sometime in the coming week. Morris has already missed as many games this season — six — as he did in the previous four seasons combined.Heat: C Hassan Whiteside (bruised left knee) missed his fourth consecutive game, and the Heat still aren’t sure when he’ll return. … Miami had what became a five-point possession late in the second quarter, when Richardson made two free throws after a Flagrant-1 on Al Horford — followed by a three-point play from James Johnson. … Dion Waiters didn’t play in the fourth quarter and scored only five points.HELLO, AGAINStevens keeps a close eye on former players, and Olynyk and Jordan Mickey — former Celtics now with the Heat — are no exception. “I really root for everybody,” Stevens said. Same goes for Spoelstra, who texted injured Celtics forward Gordon Hayward words of support after the All-Star’s grotesque ankle injury in Cleveland in the season opener. Hayward considered signing with Miami as a free agent this past summer.SCORING DROUGHT He’s now crossed that off the list as well.Irving took over down the stretch, scoring nine of his 24 points in the final 2:03 and the Boston Celtics extended their winning streak to four games after holding on late to beat the Heat 96-90 on Saturday night.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSFederer blasts lack of communication on Australian Open smogIt was Irving’s eighth time playing at Miami, and the first time he walked off the Heat home floor a winner.“Just big possessions down the stretch (and) understanding you have to stay poised,” Irving said. “It’s unwavering in those situations like that. Winning time — so it’s pretty simple.” Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacsonlast_img read more

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first_imgBut on Thursday, his lawyer Felix Majani said they will appeal the decision and are ready to go as high as the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) to see the ban either lifted or shortened.“We will go in to file for stay orders next week to see whether the ban can be temporarily halted pending the determination of our appeal. I have already written to FIFA and ask them to furnish us with the entire decision so that we can begin our appeal process,” Majani told Capital Sport.If FIFA does not give the stay orders, then Owino’s legal team will prepare for a lengthy battle to see the decision overturned and this will start at FIFA’s own Appeals Committee.“We are prepared to follow the entire due process, but ready to go all the way to CAS because we believe we will get a fair ruling there. Once we get the whole decision that includes the background and the findings, then we can put up our appeal,” Majani stated.-Definitely take time He added; “This will definitely take time and can stretch up to two years at most. It is a long journey but we are prepared to take it. It will not be easy but I will do my best, first to get the stay orders then to get the decision overturned.”FIFA’s ruling was delivered on Wednesday and included further sanctions for for nine others who were banned for life after extensive investigations found them guilty of manipulating games for financial gain through betting.They were accused of working with convicted match fixer Raj Perumal who has faced court sentences in various countries and was turned into a FIFA witness.Owino’s legal team have their work cut out especially with FIFA having forwarded tangible evidence including e-mail exchanges between Owino and Perumal detailing how they planned to allegedly influence the outcome of matches.-14 games Among the 14 games that Owino is said to have aided in fixing were the 2010 World Cup qualifiers against Nigeria and Tunisia in Nairobi, both of which didn’t go as per the fixing script.FIFA also accuses Owino to have offered in recruiting other players into the syndicate, singling out the 2011 Nile Basin tournament in Egypt where Owino did not make the team but offered to recruit players who made the cut.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Former Harambee Stars defender George ‘Wise’ Owino vies for the ball with a Tunisian opponent during a 2010 World Cup qualifier in Nairobi. PHOTO/FIFANAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 25 – George ‘Wise’ Owino’s legal team will next week file an application for stay orders at FIFA to temporarily suspend his 10-year ban for match manipulation until an appeal on the same is heard and determined by the Appeals Board.The former Harambee Stars defender was on Wednesday handed the lengthy ban after being found guilty of playing part in a scheme to manipulate matches at national team level for betting purposes.last_img read more

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first_imgA little Co Donegal school is getting a unique view of Ireland – thanks to a Canadian astronaut in outer space.Pupils at Scoil Cholmcille in Cloughfin, Lifford, have been tweeting astronaut Chris Hadfield on board the International Space Station.Commander Hadfield has just started a five month spell on board a Soyuz spacecraft where he will carry out a number of experiments. And now he has befriended the primary school pupils at Cloughfin, Ballindrait and has even sent them pictures from Ireland and around the globe from space.“During the week we saw photos of volcanoes, rice fields in Japan that were covered in snow and the bush fires in Australia.“We even saw one photo of Dublin Bay taken from space,” explained the pupils.The contact with outer space is being co-ordinated by teacher Fiona Farry.  DONEGAL SCHOOL GOES INTO OUTER SPACE – THANKS TO TWITTER! was last modified: January 14th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:astronautChris HadfieldLiffordScoil Colmcillelast_img read more

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first_imgDONEGAL County Council is on the brink of collapse tonight and could be run from Dublin within hours.The elected members face being thrown out of office if they fail to agree a budget by midnight.Fianna Fail, Sinn Fein and independent councillor John Campbell are opposing the budget in protest at plans to hand over €355M worth of assets to Irish Water. “The fact this legislation was signed on Christmas Day shows it was rushed legislation,” said Cllr Dessie Larkin when an adjourned meeting resumed at 5.10pm.“Irish Water will not prioritise Donegal. The people of Donegal will be charged for water from October 1 and we have been left in the dark,” he said.“It is wrong that we should hand over the assets of this county to anyone. It is a very bad deal for the people of Donegal.”The budget has been suggested at €138Million for 2014. But the parties opposing its passing have the majority of votes in the council chamber tonight.Sinn Fein councillor Marie Therese Gallagher said the asset transfer was “like having a hole in your roof, asking a contractor to fix it and then handing over your house.”She said the reservoirs and assets of Donegal belong to the people of Donegal.“It’s daylight robbery and it’s happening right now. People should be angry. We are custodians of this asset and we have never even been considered,” said Cllr Gallagher.Mayor Ian McGarvey was furious when Fine Gael councillor Barry O’Neill interrupted Cllr Gallagher. “I’ve work to do and I’m not sitting here listening to this,”said Cllr O’Neill.“This is a budget meeting; not a meeting about Irish Water. It’s time to get real.”Mayor McGarvey warned Cllr O’Neill to stop interrupting the meeting but he continued, commenting: “That’s a great headline.”Cllr Mick Quinn said he was angry that leader of Fine Gael in the council was “constantly” interrupting Cllr Gallagher. “What’s the point in having a code of conduct?” asked Cllr Quinn.Donegal Daily understands that councillors are “determined” not to pass the budget.If it isn’t, Minister Phil Hogan will be running the council from tomorrow.The meeting continues.LATEST: COUNCIL ON THE BRINK OF COLLAPSE AMID CHAMBER UPROAR was last modified: January 7th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:2014budget meetingDonegal County Councillast_img read more

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first_imgScientists are finding that it’s not just having the right parts that makes a body go; it’s having those parts controlled by the right regulators.  Recent stories make the case with their headlines: “‘Guardian of the Genome’: Protein Helps Prevent Damaged DNA in Yeast,” announced Science Daily.  “Scientists find gas pedal – and brake – for uncontrolled cell growth,” reported PhysOrg.  Another PhysOrg article about stem cells gave “New insights into how stem cells determine what tissue to become.”  Still another on PhysOrg said that “Researchers find key step in body’s ability to make red blood cells.”  Finally, also on PhysOrg, another use was found for large pieces of RNA transcribed from the big stretches of code between genes.  In “‘Linc-ing’ a noncoding RNA to a central cellular pathway,” the opening paragraph announced, “The recent discovery of more than a thousand genes known as large intergenic non-coding RNAs (or ‘lincRNAs’) opened up a new approach to understanding the function and organization of the genome.  That surprising breakthrough is now made even more compelling with the finding that dozens of these lincRNAs are induced by p53 (the most commonly mutated gene in cancer), suggesting that this class of genes plays a critical role in cell development and regulation.”  All that was announced in just 3 days of science news, suggesting this is a hot area of research.  Without precise regulation of the parts of a cell and its genes, bad things happen.This brief entry today is a teaser to go and read the articles, look for mentions of evolution or design, and think about which point of view found these discoveries surprising or not.  Of course, don’t expect to see the words “intelligent design” anywhere, since that phrase is effectively banned from secular science journalism.  Look instead for indirect inferences that design is the best explanation.  Or, look for the lack of attempts to explain the regulation by evolution.(Visited 11 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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first_imgWest Bend GeoTourWest Bend, Wisconsin, is the Geocaching Capital of the Midwest™ and ready to be discovered. Geocache your way through historic sites, parks, trails, museums, and more on the West Bend Four Seasons GeoTour. It’s named the Four Seasons GeoTour for good reason — all the caches are accessible year-round. So slather on the sunscreen or slip on snow boots and come cache with us!Great caches on this GeoTourTwenty geocaches have been hidden that highlight the best of historic West Bend. These three caches are not to be missedWBGT 01: Historic Frisby House, GC53BATWBGT 01: Historic Frisby House, GC53BAT The Frisby house is named after Leander F. Frisby, a prominent figure in Wisconsin history and is now home to the West Bend Chamber of Commerce. This is a great first stop on your tour — grab your passport and find the first cache right outside.WBGT 02: Old Courthouse Square, GC53BB1 Clad in brick, the courthouse was built in 1889 in the Richardson Romanesque Revival Style and served as the county courthouse until 1962. Today, The Old Courthouse Museum is thought by many to be the best local history museum in the Midwest.Albino deer drinking waterWBGT 13: Shalom Wildlife Zoo, GC53GBA A diverse, 100-acre farm/zoo featuring deer, bison, elk, red fox, mink, and more than 400 other animals call Shalom Wildlife Zoo their home. Their mission is to preserve the wilderness while providing education, enjoyment, and wildlife encounters in a natural ecosystem.Local events for geocachers to discover while on the Four Seasons GeoTourFrom mid-May through the end of October, pay a visit to the West Bend Farmers Market, held every Saturday. It’s one of the largest farmers markets in the state.From Thanksgiving through Christmas, enjoy an interactive light show with music, and performance at Enchantment in the Park. SharePrint Related What geocachers are sayingThank you for bringing us to some great and historic areas. I can’t wait to finish the rest of the caches! -ptrol64We really enjoyed the buildings around here. We were most surprised at the wildlife. -wigglesworthWe had a lot of fun finding the different cache types and going to amazing spots. We worked together to find the answers needed for the Virtuals and Earthcaches. We found some very cool caches. -Bike_4_me West Bend $1,000 Cache Ba$hIf you’re a fan of contests and cash, check out Wisconsin’s only Mega-Event, the West Bend $1,000 Cache Ba$h, held annually during the second weekend in August.Other great reasons to visit West BendIn addition to being the Geocaching Capital of the Midwest™, West Bend is an amazing place to visitIce Age TrailTons of great trails to hike and bike including the Eisenbahn State Trail, Ice Age National Scenic Trail, and Kettle Moraine State Forest.Two wonderful downhill skiing locations, one with the world’s largest tubing park! A charming downtown bustling with restaurants, unique shops, and museums, including the stunning Museum of Wisconsin Art. Geocache “WBGT 04: Art and Trains”, GC53BBB, informs of the art museum and the area’s railroad history.Prizes!Receive a limited-edition West Bend Four Seasons geocoin when you collect 25 points on your passport. Plus, if you find every cache on this GeoTour, you’ll earn the official digital souvenir for your profile!  West Bend GeoCoin Share with your Friends:Morelast_img read more

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first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Says McClure, “There is a role for freemium, but unless you missed the TPS report the FREE part is only a loss-leader for the MEE-YUM part — it’s a test-drive before you buy something. If your users are just kicking the tires then you need to kick them to the curb eventually.” McClure is right. It’s been a long time since eyeballs have automatically equated to dollars. If you’ve got a product that even a small number of users will pay for on a regular basis, establish that paid user base as soon as you possibly can. Related Posts Tags:#start#StartUp 101#startups Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market dana oshiro As an entrepreneur, blogger and the investor in charge of the Founders Fund seed investment program, Dave McClure knows the importance of a proven revenue model. In a recent blog post he makes the assertion that “subscription models are the new black,” despite the fact that startup monetization has focussed heavily on cost-per-click advertising. He writes, “This Don’t-Be-Evil-AdWords-Click-Happiness..It’s made us a bunch of lazy, ad-happy, Web-Tards with crappy ROI…We have largely WASTED an entire web decade of time, energy & venture capital on extremely inefficient revenue models.” While we might not have chosen this exact phrasing, we cannot agree with McClure more. Nowhere is freemium model failure more obvious than in the streaming music space. Even with millions of users and licensing deals with major labels, Imeem was acquired by MySpace last year and quickly dismantled. The cost of licensing content to unpaying users was enough to put the company into serious debt. The company’s subscription service just wasn’t enough to offset the cost of the freemium business. Meanwhile, myriad music sites have come and gone, but Rhapsody’s subscription-only service has managed to survive. Having learned from its predecessors, it’s rumored that Spotify will only launch in the US with a subscription model, despite its free European offerings. last_img read more

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first_imgHow IoT Will Play an Important Role in Traffic … Surveillance at the Heart of Smart Cities Related Posts Silicon Valley has been the epicenter of all major tech advancement in the past decade, but when it comes to self-driving, Detroit could snatch that the title away.A new report from Navigant Research shows two of the ‘Big Three’ Detroit auto companies, Ford and General Motors, ahead of auto and tech rivals based in Silicon Valley and Germany.The researchers used 10 different criteria, including strategy, manufacturing, distribution, staying power, and execution, to mark 18 companies currently working on self-driving tech.Ford and General Motors were named ‘leaders’ in the report, alongside Renault-Nissan and Daimler. BMW, VW, Tesla, Waymo, and Volvo were all placed in the ‘contenders’ category, as seen in the graphic above.In the rundown of the rankings, Waymo, the first Silicon Valley company, is ranked seventh. Baidu, nuTonomy, and Uber, three other tech firms, are ranked in the ‘challengers’ category, clearly showing that being an automaker or having a partnership gives a major advantage.It should be noted that Navigant Research takes the entire deployment into account, so the rankings do not reveal the sophistication of each company’s self-driving tech.General Motors and Ford have both made billion-dollar investments to bolster each company’s self-driving talent. GM bought Cruise Automation for $660 million and has invested $500 million into Lyft, a ride-sharing service. Ford spent $1 billion to acquire Argo AI, a young tech startup with high-profile founders.The two American automakers also have the advantage of experience and scalability, two things that Tesla was ranked down on.See Also: Industry split on when first commercial self-driving vehicle will be readyRenault-Nissan, ranked third, have made a few announcements in the past six months to excite investors. It has not made any major investments into self-driving startups however, instead working internally to build its systems.The news might prompt further investment from Michigan into self-driving tech. The state has already created an organization to build a 331-acre fake town for automakers to test driverless vehicles. Tags:#automakers#autonomous cars#Detroit#driverless#featured#Michigan#Navigant Research#Self-Driving#Silicon Valley#top center_img How Connected Communities Can Bolster Your Busi… David Curry IT Trends of the Future That Are Worth Paying A…last_img read more

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first_imgThe newly inducted Ministers in Rajasthan were on Thursday allocated portfolios by Governor Kalyan Singh on the advice of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. Mr. Gehlot has kept nine departments, including Finance and Home, with himself.Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot was given the portfolios of Public Works, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj. Various departments were distributed among the 13 Cabinet Ministers and 10 Ministers of State, who were sworn in here on Monday.According to the orders issued by the Cabinet Secretariat, Mr. Gehlot has been allocated Finance, Home and Justice, Excise, Planning, Policy Formulation, Personnel, General Administration and Information Technology departments and the State Bureau of Investigation.Mr. Pilot has also received the charge of Science and Technology and Statistics departments. The portfolios were distributed after several rounds of meetings in Delhi amid reported differences of opinion among the Congress leaders. Both Mr. Gehlot and Mr. Pilot met Congress president Rahul Gandhi apparently to iron out the differences.Among the Cabinet Ministers, B.D. Kalla was given Energy and Water Resources departments; Shanti Dhariwal was allotted Urban Development and Housing department; Parsadi Lal Industries department; Lal Chand Kataria Agriculture department and Raghu Sharma, Medical and Health department.Bhanwarlal Meghwal was given Social Justice department, Pramod Bhaya Mines department, Vishvendra Singh Tourism department, Harish Chudhary Revenue department, Ramesh Chand Meena Food and Civil Supplies department, Udai Lal Anjana Cooperative department, Pratap Singh Khachariawas Transport department and Saleh Mohammed Minority affairs department.Among the Ministers of State, Govind Singh Dotasara was given independent charge of Education department; Mamta Bhupesh, independent charge of Women and Child Development department; Arjun Singh Bamania, independent charge of Tribal Area development department; and Bhanwar Singh Bhati, independent charge of Higher Education department.Sukhram Bishnoi was given independent charge of Forest department; Ashok Chandna, independent charge of Sports and Youth Affairs department; Tika Ram Jully, independent charge of Labour department; Bhajan Lal Jatav, independent charge of Home Guards and Civil Defence department; Rajendra Singh Yadav, independent charge of Planning department; and Subhash Garg, independent charge of Technical Education department.Mr. Gehlot said the first meeting of the Cabinet as well as the Council of Ministers would be held on Friday, celebrated as the foundation day of the Congress, to discuss the measures for good governance.Mr. Pilot said the government would roll out a 100-day action plan and work with a “collective leadership.” He said a “balanced Cabinet” had been formed in the State, giving representation to new, young and experienced party leaders.last_img read more

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first_imgMohammad Asif oversteps at Lord’sIt is international cricket’s most shameful and defining image. London-based property dealer Mazhar Majeed seated in a hotel room counting bundles of notes totalling 1,40,000. He was unaware that he was being filmed by a hidden camera and that he, and the so-called gentleman’s game, would,Mohammad Asif oversteps at Lord’sIt is international cricket’s most shameful and defining image. London-based property dealer Mazhar Majeed seated in a hotel room counting bundles of notes totalling 1,40,000. He was unaware that he was being filmed by a hidden camera and that he, and the so-called gentleman’s game, would make sensational headlines across the cricketing world within hours. The London tabloid News of the World’s sting operation on Majeed stripped the covers off a million-pound betting racket involving not just the three players at its heart-newly appointed Pakistan Test captain Salman Butt and the two spearheads of the team’s pace attack, Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif-but the shadowy world of cricket betting syndicates and how they operate and make “masses of money” as Majeed, 35, boasted to the undercover reporters posing as representatives of a Far-eastern gambling syndicate looking to make easy money.That’s just what international cricket seems to offer in its tragic transition from the gentleman’s game to a safe harbour for crooks. Majeed’s sensational revelations have rocked the cricketing world like no other previous scandal in any sport. The expose reveals facts that will horrify millions of cricket fans around the world.Video grab of Mazhar MajeedMatch fixing or spot fixing goes on in all forms of the game-Tests, One Day Internationals and Twenty20s.The scam involved no less than seven players in the Pakistan team and that future games against England this summer were already earmarked for cheating.That his match fixing takes him around the world and had netted him millions.That he made $1.3 million from just one game, Pakistan versus Australia at Sydney in 2010.He had opened Swiss bank accounts for players to launder his and their illicit profits.That he was in touch with an Indian bookie and called him during the sting to ask what he would pay for fixing a match in the ongoing Pakistan series.advertisementSalman ButtThat this is the most sensational sporting scandal ever was evidenced by Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif delivering three no balls exactly as Majeed had predicted, during the just concluded Lord’s Test. It must be a case of deja vu for Lord Condon, the outgoing head of the International Cricket Council’s (IIC) anti-corruption unit who had warned the game’s governing body of spot fixing “spreading like a rash” earlier this year. The former Scotland Yard commissioner, recruited to lead the unit in the wake of the Hansie Cronje match-fixing affair a decade ago, had said fixing, which exploits bets placed on short passages of play rather than match results, remained a serious threat.While the ICC has refused to comment on its ongoing investigation, it is believed that it and Scotland Yard were tipped off a month ago about match fixing in the first match of the England-Pakistan Test series at Trent Bridge.AsifIn a separate long-standing investigation, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs officers were also investigating Majeed, the kingpin of the spot fixing racket on suspicion of money laundering. Two others, a 35-year-old woman and a 49-year-old man, were also arrested in connection with the money laundering case but are out on bail. Majeed, who runs a property company Bluesky Developments with a multi-million-pound portfolio, appears to have cemented his role as the players’ confidant in the financially lucrative world of sponsorship deals and marketing opportunities since Pakistan’s last tour of England in 2006.The increasingly close relationship between Majeed and the players appears to have rung alarm bells with the Pakistani authorities and at the start of the current tour the players were told they were no longer allowed to have agents in their hotel rooms. A team official claims former Test captain Shahid Afridi had also warned his teammates to stay away from Majeed.Mohammad AmirMeanwhile, public outrage at the scandal grew as fans demanded refunds for the remaining games in the series. The backlash started in Yorkshire, which is hosting a one-day match at Headingley. Other grounds staging games in the five-match series have also been affected by the scandal, and could also undermine ticket sales for the two Twenty20 internationals in Cardiff. The county’s chief executive, Stewart Regan, admitted that many will be attending reluctantly, having tried unsuccessfully to cancel their bookings in protest against Pakistan’s conduct.This article appeared in the India Today magazine dated September 13, 2010. Subscribe to the print copy.Pakistan’s manager Yawar Saeed and assistant manager Shafqat Ranan (extreme right) read the tabloid at Lord’s.”The phones in the club office haven’t stopped ringing with people wanting to vent their fury and ask whether they can get refunds on the one-day internationals,” Regan said. “I’ve personally fielded several calls and we’ve had numerous enquiries about cancelling tickets. From the club’s point of view, we can’t give refunds simply because people have got a personal opinion about what’s going on, no matter how much we might agree with them.”What is shocking for the image of cricket is the money involved in mere spot fixing, and not throwing a match: 1,50,000 was paid to Majeed by the reporters posing as gamblers. He also sensationally claimed that the syndicate (the reporters) could make “absolutely millions and millions” by paying him up to 4,50,000 a time for information on matches. He excused the players’ shameful behaviour, claiming: “These poor boys are paid peanuts.”advertisementWhat Mazhar Majeed revealedMatch fixing or spot fixing goes on in all forms of the game-Tests, One Dayers and Twenty20s.He had seven Pakistani players literally in his pocket, aiding him in fixing matches.He made $1.3 million (8,37,000) from just one game-Pakistan versus Australia in the controversial Sydney Test in January 2010.  That is somewhat true but for so many Test players to be in on a betting racket and Majeed boasting that he fixes matches around the world means the rot in international cricket runs deep. He also claimed to be in constant touch with an Indian bookie. Cricketers past and present have reacted with shock and horror but not with any great surprise. “Given the shift of cricket’s power base to the east, given the way cricket is placed to offer betting opportunities and that the governing body is weak, it is no surprise to me,” said Michael Atherton, former England captain.The immediate fall-out was in Pakistan. “The incident has forced Pakistanis to hang their head in shame,” said Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. Adding sub-continental spice to the allegations has been the rivetting performance by Veena Malik-a Pakistani actor and former girlfriend of one of the players accused, Asif-who has turned a whistleblower.”This is a sad day for international cricket but make no mistake, we will not tolerate corruption in this great game. The ICC will investigate 82 Tests and ODIs for possible match fixing.”HAROON LORGAT, CEO, ICC She claimed that Asif had told her the Pakistani team would not win a single match on its Australian tour last year. “Asif told me he was offered $40,000 by an Indian bookie to underperform in Australia but he had demanded $2,00,000,” she said. The bookie is Delhi-based Dheeraj Dixit, a freelance photographer. Dixit has denied the allegations but he refused to speak to INDIA TODAY, claiming he had been advised by his lawyers. His sudden silence, and his well known friendship with leading cricketers across the world, have put a large question mark over his presence in London when the scandal broke.Allegations linking Pakistani cricketers to match fixing are nothing new but the video footage secretly filmed by the tabloid, brought the scandal into the homes of millions of cricket fans in Pakistan, already reeling from killer floods. Kamran Ahmed, a hospital employee, said it was unbelievable that the players had ignored the people’s attachment to them: cricket is one of the passions that unite Pakistan. The response from the government and politicians was as strong as that of the fans.advertisementHow the sting was plannedA ball by ball account of how the biggest scandal in international cricket was exposed by the News of the World tabloid.AUGUST 16: Posing as a Far-eastern syndicate, undercover reporters meet Mazhar Majeed at the Hilton in Park Lane.    AUGUST 18: They meet at the Bombay Brasserie restaurant where Majeed boasts of fixing matches and how he and Pakistan players made money. Explains “spread betting”. Says Pakistan vs Australia Test at Sydneywas fixed and he made 1.3 million.AUGUST 19: He invites the reporter to join him and the players at a restaurant. He borrows a player’s jacket, and he and the reporter go and sit in a Mercedes. The reporter hands over 10,000 which he puts in the jacket pocket. Walks back to the players outside the restaurant, shows the money in the jacket. Fast bowler Wahab Riaz puts on the jacket.AUGUST 21: Majeed invites the reporter to his house in Croydon. Reveals how he launders match-fixing money through a football club he owns and claims he’s opened Swiss bank accounts for the players he “manages”.  AUGUST 26: They meet at a hotel where the reporter hands over 1,40,000 in 140 bundles. Majeed counts the money and then reveals which balls would be no balls during the Lord’s Test. It happens as he predicted. This article appeared in the India Today magazine dated September 13, 2010. Subscribe to the print copy.Kamram Akmal (left) during the Sydney Test against Australia.Interior Minister Rehman Malik said the government would take the “toughest action” against anyone found involved in wrong-doing but cautioned that authorities were keen to ensure that the sting operation was not part of a “conspiracy” to defame the country. Sports Minister Ijaz Hussain Jakhrani pledged any player found involved in spot fixing would be given a lifetime ban. Interior Minister Malik directed the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to form a special three-member investigation team that would, if required, go to London to work with the Scotland Yard to probe the scandal.But Pakistani commentators and former players said the latest scandal had occurred only because the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB)-currently led by Ijaz Butt, considered close to President Asif Ali Zardari-had failed to act on earlier allegations of similar wrong-doing. Even in cases where it did take action, players were let off with a slap on the wrist.”It doesn’t leave a good impression about cricket and cricketers. It is something one would like to erase and make sure cricket heads in the right direction so that it helps cricket to grow across the globe.”SACHIN TENDULKAR, Cricketer Justice Malik Muhammad Qayyum, a retired judge who headed the inquiry that eventually banished Saleem Malik and Ata-ur-Rahman from the game and implicated a number of other Pakistani players in match fixing, has said a “soft corner” for Wasim Akram might had influenced him while handing the former Pakistan captain his punishment. Former cricketer Masood Aamir said the manager of the team must be taken to the task as he was responsible for maintaining discipline.”The manager shouldn’t have allowed players to have links with a controversial man like Majeed, who has been claiming he is the agent of several cricketers,” he said.PAY SCALES MATTERHere is what the top players in various countries get as retainership per annum. It excludes match fees, sponsorship money or money got through domestic events like the IPL.AUSTRALIA – Rs 2.9 crENGLAND – Rs 2.9 crSOUTH AFRICA – Rs 76 lakhINDIA – Rs 60 lakhWEST INDIES – Rs 56 lakhSRI LANKA – Rs 56 lakhPAKISTAN – Rs 16 lakhBANGLADESH – Rs 8.7 lakhSource: The Daily Mail Majeed, or Mr Fixer, has a 1.8-million home in Surrey and is a familiar face at cricket grounds around the world. He bragged to the tabloid that he managed no less than 10 players and handled all their contracts, sponsorship, marketing and even claimed to “work very closely with the PCB”. He also claimed that he had been involved in fixing matches for more than two years “and we’ve made masses and masses of money”. He revealed secret signals like changing gloves or tapping the ground with the bat to indicate that a fix was on.The money for spot fixing during a match he mentioned is shocking. He claimed to charge for “brackets” or short periods of play, as much as between 50,000 and 80,000 from bookies. Twenty20 was about 4,00,000. And for merely bowling a no ball, a person could earn 10,000 on each ball. For results of a fixed match, depending on who was playing, his earnings could go as high as 3,00,000 to 450,000.More ominously for the Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI), he told the tabloid, “You can speak to any bookie in India and they will tell you about this information and how much they’ll pay. If you had the information and they knew that it was coming from a right source they would pay you that kind of money.””Given the shift of cricket’s power base to the East, given the way cricket is placed to offer betting opportunities and that the governing body is weak, it is unlikely that an absolute end to corruption will come any time soon.”MIKE ATHERTON, Former England Captain This article appeared in the India Today magazine dated September 13, 2010. Subscribe to the print copy.The Indian connection apart, it is the larger ramifications that are worrying everyone connected to the game. “It doesn’t leave a good impression about cricket and cricketers. It is something one would like to erase,” says Sachin Tendulkar. Adds Australian captain Ricky Ponting, “The way we won the Sydney Test was one of the more satisfying moments that I’ve had on the cricket field. And now when some of these things came to light, you start to slightly doubt some of the things that have happened.”How Spot fixing is doneEarlier match fixing scandals revolved around individual players or entire teams underperforming and losing matches where the bookmaker’s odds ensured a hefty profit for illegal betting. The latest is spot bets on shorter periods of play. In bookmaker’s language, these periods are called ‘brackets’-events happening in a group of 10 overs. If players score well in the first three overs, punters would be likely to bet on that continuing for the next seven. But if the fixed players then deliberately stop scoring or slow down, anybody with advance knowledge can make a killing. The same happens with bowlers giving away runs or bowling no balls. A fixer like Majeed can prove invaluable to other betting syndicates who are involved in spread betting where wagers are staked on a range of possible outcomes. The players also have secret signals to let gambling clients know that the fix was on. In one case, as Majeed revealed, captain Salman Butt was to indicate he was going along with the scam by tapping the pitch midway with his bat during the over, as players do when flattening a bump. Majeed claimed that on results for brackets, he charges anything between 50,000 and 80,000 per bracket. For Twenty20, his rate was about 4,00,000. On just no balls, if someone knew in advance when it would be bowled, the better could earn up to 10,000 on each ball. During the second Test between Australia and Pakistan in Sydney last January, at the start of the final day Pakistan were in a dominant position but managed to lose dramatically. Majeed claimed the Sydney Test was fixed and based on the shock result in that match it seems he is not lying.Hall of InfamyThey allegedly succumbed to the fixing bug and were thrown out of the gameMOHAMMAD AZHARUDDIN, INDIABanned for life in 2000 for having links with bookiesAJAY JADEJA, INDIABanned for five years in 2000. Alleged to have links with bookies. Ban lifted in 2003.HANSIE CRONJE, SOUTH AFRICABanned for life in 2000. Found guilty of accepting money from bookmakers.HERSCHELLE GIBBS, SOUTH AFRICABanned for six months in 2000. Agreed to underperform in an ODI at Nagpur, but scrapped the deal.AJAY SHARMA, INDIABanned for life in 2000. Found guilty for associating with bookmakers.MAURICE ODUMBE, KENYABanned for five years in 2004. Alleged to have received money from bookmakers.MARLON SAMUELS, WEST INDIESBanned for two years in 2008. Received money, benefit and other rewards from bookmakers.MANOJ PRABHAKAR, INDIABanned for five years in 2000. Tried to implicate Kapil Dev but was later found guilty himself. In fact, investigations by Scotland Yard after the latest scandal broke have revealed that bookies and fixers have raked in profits running into at least 20 million just from Pakistan’s ongoing tour of England with the three players named having received close to 6 million. The ICC is investigating no less than 82 other Test matches and ODIs, including the match between Pakistan and Sri Lanka during the Asia Cup.Just how widespread is match fixing? Cases involving players from almost every country have surfaced over the last 10 years, but the sub-continent is clearly the hub. That cricket betting was institutionalised had been exposed in a series of scandals involving Indian bookies and players. Match fixing first came to light in the mid-1980s when Sharjah started hosting what was referred as the ‘benevolent fund series’ and gangster Dawood Ibrahim made his in Dubai in January 2003. Bookies work under their patronage from Mumbai and Dubai and hire go-betweens who contact players. Spot fixing was introduced to add bookie revenue so that every ball was being bet on.The CBI sources say the role of the administrators of the cricket needs to be investigated as well. “This rot begins from the top administrators. They are aware but do not do much about it.” So far, match fixing involving Indian players has tainted former skipper Mohammad Azharuddin who was given a life ban and Manoj Prabhakar, Ajay Jadeja and Ajay Sharma who were banned for five years.Indian bookies like Mukesh Gupta claimed to have many top players on his payroll. Stephen Fleming, former New Zealand captain, named sports promoter Aushim Khetarpal who had offered him 3,00,000 (Rs 2.3 crore) to join a betting syndicate. Shobhan Mehta, the big daddy of bookies in the country, was arrested in Gujarat in August this year. Maurice Odumbe, the captain of the Kenyan cricket team, admitted that he had made four trips to meet Mehta in Mumbai before the 2003 World Cup.The Hansie Cronje story exposed the depth of match fixing in 2000 when the Delhi Police tapped his phone and stumbled across the scam. Cronje later confessed to taking about $1,00,000 in bribes from gamblers since 1996. He was banned for life and the plane crash that killed him in 2002 was shrouded in mystery.The crux of the problem is that there has been a shift in cricket’s power base from countries like England and Australia to the subcontinent, where a majority of the bookies come from and where the money in the game has reached astronomical levels. Income Tax authorities in India say that an India vs Pakistan one-day international match will invite a betting business worth Rs 800 to 1,000 crore.The advent of cash-rich Twenty20 tournaments like the IPL has only led to a revival in bookie interest and corruption. One reason given for Pakistan player’s vulnerability to bribery is that they were not picked for the IPL’s last edition. Such tournaments are independent of official cricketing scrutiny by the ICC’s anti-corruption unit. An added factor is the change in betting patterns, with spot fixing taking over and being more difficult to uncover. There is also the ICC’s soft approach to allegations of corruption or match fixing and some countries like Pakistan which make a mockery of players’ bans-Shahid Afridi was reinstated as captain four days after been given a six-month ban for ball tampering.The latest scandal will, hopefully, force the ICC’s hand and encourage stricter controls on players and suspected bookies. That may just prove a blessing in disguise and save international cricket from the clutches of crooks and scamsters.with Mihir Srivastava(Aditi Khanna and Tahir Khan reported from London and Karachi respectively)This article appeared in the India Today magazine dated September 13, 2010. Subscribe to the print copy.last_img read more

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