World heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder claims he has agreed to fight Britain’s Anthony Joshua in the UK.The American, 32, holds the WBC title and wants a unification bout with Joshua, the WBA, IBF and WBO champion.He tweeted: “The $50m offer for him to fight me next in the US is still available. Today, I even agreed to their offer to fight Joshua next in the UK.” Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn told Sky Sports he will send the contracts but wonders if Wilder’s claim is “bluster”.He added: “It’s all come as a bit of a shock that Deontay’s finally come back to us on the offer and seems to accept the terms.“One thing I can tell you is that by the end of this week Deontay Wilder will have a contract in front of him and we’ll see if he’s real.”Hearn has previously criticised the Wilder team for appearing to do their business via social media, insisting “deals are made in the boardroom, not on Instagram”.“If he prefers the fight in the UK, the ball is in their court. It’s up to them to choose,” Wilder added.Wilder’s Manager, Shelly Finkel, told ESPN they had officially accepted terms to a fight in the UK.He said: “Deontay sent an email to Joshua (Sunday night), and I sent one (Monday) to Barry Hearn and Eddie telling them that we officially accept the offer to fight under the terms they gave us and to send us the contract.”Should Joshua, 28, fight the American next, the winner would become the first heavyweight to hold all four recognised world titles at once.Russian Alexander Povetkin is the WBA’s mandatory challenger and is close to a deal to fight Joshua, although Joshua could face Wilder first if Povetkin is able to fight the winner.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Redshirt senior defensive end Jabari Ruffin will sit out the first half of USC’s home opener against Utah State after he was ejected for stomping on an Alabama player’s groin on Saturday.Head coach Clay Helton announced the suspension in a teleconference with the media on Sunday. “As a learning lesson,” Helton also said that Ruffin will have to write a letter of apology.The incident occurred late in the first half of USC’s 52-6 loss to Alabama at AT&T Stadium to begin the season. After junior Adoree’ Jackson was tackled returning a kickoff, he attempted to help up Alabama sophomore defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick. But Ruffin stood over Fitzpatrick and used his left foot to step on the downed Crimson Tide player.Ruffin, who appeared in 14 games last season as a backup outside linebacker and on special teams, was flagged and ejected immediately.“He understands that his conduct is unbecoming of a Trojan and there will be zero tolerance moving forward,” Helton said to the media.Ruffin is the third USC player to be suspended in the last week. Sophomore inside linebacker Osa Masina and redshirt sophomore defensive end Don Hill were suspended for the Alabama game for their involvement in a sexual assault investigation.Helton did not disclose whether the two players would be available against Utah State, but said the University is allowing Masina and Hill to attend school, practice and meetings.
This weekend Oppikoppi celebrates 21 years of bringing South Africans together with good music and great memories, while creating a unique template for diversity, acceptance and artistic collaboration. Vusi Mahlasela and rock band Jack Hammer redefine post-apartheid South Africa with their 2002 appearance at Oppikoppi, Fountains Valley, Pretoria. (Image: Oppikoppi)• South Africa’s musos dish on being a woman in music • Madiba Music: Your 67-minute Mandela Day Mixtape • Rocking the nation, and the world• Local music festivals rock in South Africa • South African music CD AndersonConsidering the Oppikoppi music festival’s roots – a makeshift barroom stage atop a hill on a farm deep in the North West province – it has come a long way over two decades. It is now a fully functioning cultural juggernaut, embracing not just music, but a wide variety of South African pop culture touchstones: art, comedy, film and technology.Much like the UK’s Glastonbury or one of the several American alternative music festivals like Bonnaroo or Lollapalooza, Oppikoppi holds up pretty well as movement and zeitgeist for the contemporary South African identity, for its youth at least.What started with just a couple of counterculture heroes like Koos Kombuis and Valiant Swart with beat-up guitars on top of a hill playing to a couple of hundred people, Oppikoppi has now evolved into a full weekend of 150 acts, on seven stages that play a multitude of diverse genres: jazz, hip-hop, electronic music, folk and everything in between to 20,000 enthusiastic music fans.Over the years, festival organisers have evolved a distinct character of diversity and collaboration, and sharing of ideas that speaks for and to the modern South African identity, offering audiences the stage to experience music they would have otherwise never heard of, or even considered.Performers like Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse, Karen Zoid and Waddy Jones (now famous as Ninja from rap group Die Antwoord), as well as DJs, rappers and electronica musicians, comedians and artists from all across the country, might never have found a new audience had it not been for the Oppikoppi platform.Even in the festival’s early days, the role of Oppikoppi for many people was a way to discover new music and meet new kinds of people, share ideas and generally feel a part of what makes the country’s heart beat. Rockers found electronic music, reggae lovers found metal music and everyone embraced something different into their lives that significantly changed the way they looked at the world.Above all else, at Oppikoppi, the music was all that mattered.There has always a real sense of collaboration in music at Oppikoppi, teaming up some diverse artists to see what kind of magic could be created, and it always worked. Notable instances include one of the earliest and most memorable Oppikoppi partnerships of blues guitarist Albert Frost and Zimbabwean jazz guitar player Louis Mhlanga, who performed a riveting and rafter-lifting set at the bar stage in 1998 that is still regarded today as one of the greatest Oppikoppi moments ever.“I’ve played there many times and it’s always been an incredible experience,” said African folk singer Vusi Mahlasela, one of Oppikoppi’s de facto spiritual leaders and vocal cheerleader for the festival on his travels around the world. Of his many appearances at the Oppikoppi, his most significant one was, ironically, not even at the Oppikoppi farm itself, but at the short-lived urban Oppikoppi experiment at Pretoria’s Fountains Valley resort, where he performed his set backed by Afrikaans rock icon Piet Botha and his band Jack Hammer in 2002. Heavy in unique musical improvisation and symbolism, the mash up of white rock music and one of SA’s melodic and unifying struggle voices culminated in a rousing version of James Phillip’s poignant Africa is Dying that had the entire audience in tears and on their feet.No matter where the festival was held, Oppikoppi has always successfully mixed and matched, cobbled and constructed every kind of music and artistic expression into a giant mixing bowl of musical magic. Everything from blues with boeremusiek, drum ‘n bass and kwaito, folk with comedy. Artists of every calibre, from every genre and in every discipline, have made Oppikoppi their incubator for new ideas and new directions, making new friends and reigniting past creative passions.It must be the dust, the grit of Africa between the teeth and the ruthless heat followed by majestic sunsets and long, raucous nights in the comradeship of feeling good. There is something spiritual about the place.After the dust has finally settled, the hangovers cured and the road back home reluctantly trekked, for most ‘Oppikoppe’ the memories that remain and the ones remembered for years after, are the musical moments, the moments you will never see anywhere else in the universe, the kind of musical harmony that could only be borne out of South Africa’s most sacred musical real estate. The legendary Vusi Mahlasela at the 2012 Oppikoppi Sweet/Thing festival with Karen Zoid, and Albert Frost.
A day after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) initiated a money-laundering probe against Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar, his nephew Ajit Pawar and others in the Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank (MSCB) loan irregularities, Baramati — the bastion of the Pawar clan — observed a total shutdown in support of the NCP supremo.Educational institutions, business establishments and shops downed shutters in Baramati and neighbouring Indapur tehsil, while protests organised by the NCP youth wing were staged in Pune, Mumbai, Nashik and other parts of the State including the Marathwada region, especially Beed and Aurangabad districts.Large crowds, including schoolgoing children, were seen throughout Baramati raising slogans in Mr. Pawar’s support, while angry demonstrations by NCP activists were witnessed accompanied by burning of effigies of the ED.Speaking in Mumbai, former Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar said no irregularities of even a single paisa had occurred at MSCB.“After an FIR was lodged against me and others on the direction of the Bombay High Court and the economic offences wing (EOW) of the police was probing the case, a certain individual filed a PIL claiming a scam of ₹ 25,000 crore had taken place…moreover, Sharad Pawar has no relation whatsoever with this case and neither was he ever a director of this bank. To the best of my knowledge, the total deposits of the bank were ₹13,000 crore. So, how could irregularities of ₹25,000 crore have transpired?” he asked.He said that MSCB directors were from a number of political parties including the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Shiv Sena and the Congress, and not just the NCP. “Had there been irregularities of this magnitude [₹25,000 crore], the bank would not have been showing a profit of ₹300 crore today,” Mr. Ajit Pawar said.Meanwhile, Sharad Pawar’s grand nephew, Rohit Pawar, hit out at the BJP saying the allegations were clearly politically motivated. “The ED’s probe only illustrates that the BJP has no real issue to talk about. Since it has failed to deliver on its tall promises, it is now attempting to divert public attention by indulging in such undignified moves and misusing probe agencies,” said Mr. Rohit Pawar.Sandhya Sonawane, head of NCP’s youth wing in Ahmednagar, said the response generated by Mr. Pawar’s pre-poll tours across the State had rattled the BJP.“As a result, the ruling government is resorting to such base tactics by unleashing the ED on Pawar saaheb. However, the public will give the BJP a fitting reply in the forthcoming elections,” she said.
LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBIÑAN, Laguna—Philippine outside hitter Alyssa Valdez said their disappointing loss to Thailand in the AVC Asian Senior Women’s Volleyball Championship will serve as a lesson as they try to finish the tournament on a high note.But the following day, the volleybelles dropped another three-setter for a second straight game, this time to Chinese-Tapei.ADVERTISEMENT Read Next UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension AVC: Chinese-Taipei trumps Philippines for crack at 5th place WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Man sworn in as lawyer by judge who sentenced him to prison as a teen 20 years ago Flags of SEA Games countries raised at Athletes Village LATEST STORIES “Definitely this is a challenge for us to be consistent, to be on top of our game every game,” said Valdez Tuesday at Alonte Sports Arena. “This is a learning experience for us.”READ: Thailand silences PH to advance to AVC semis FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water polo SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief SPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutValdez, after putting up her tournament-high of 20 points in the Philippines’ win against Vietnam, labored for nine points, and converted on just 8-of-26 of her spike attempts against the Thais.The 24-year-old was visibly frustrated throughout the match as her attempts either bounced got blocked or just went awry. View comments Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games She finished with 13 points versus the Taiwanese but was disappointed with how they lost their early third set lead.READ: AVC: Chinese-Taipei trumps Philippines for crack at 5th placeValdez said they just have to keep their heads high with the tournament about to wrap up.“We’ll just have to fight because we can still achieve great things if we just fight for it,” said Valdez in Filipino. “This is a game, there will be losers and there will be winners, but let’s just think of the brighter things and let’s hope that we can win.”ADVERTISEMENT
Japanese company Sony took the wraps off its new Xperia X line-up smartphones, Xperia Ear wireless earphones and more at the ongoing MWC 2016 event in Barcelona, Spain. Sony’s new Xperia X series – consisting of the Xperia X, XA and X Performance – focuses on improved camera capabilities, battery-life and design, says the company.Also Read: Samsung Galaxy S7, S7 Edge: Top features, specifications, price and everything you need to know The Xperia X and Xperia X Performance phones come with 5-inch 1080p display and 23-megapixel rear and 13-megapixel front cameras. “The all-new Predictive Hybrid Autofocus in Xperia X and Xperia X Performance lets you choose your subject and then predicts its motion, so you can capture the action in perfect focus, free from blur,” the company said in a statement. In addition, Sony claims up to two days battery life on the phones.While the Xperia X is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 650 processor coupled with 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal memory, the flagship Xperia X Performance comes with a Snapdragon 820 chipset. The Xperia X Performance is water-proof as well.Also Read: Samsung Galaxy S7 quick review: Looks like Galaxy S6 but big changes inside The Xperia XA is said to be the more affordable offerings, boasting of a 5-inch 720p display and a MediaTek MT6755 processor clubbed with 2GB RAM and 16GB of internal storage. It sports a 13-megapixel camera on the rear and an 8-megapixel camera on the front.All the phones run Android 6.0 Marshmallow. While the Xperia X and Xperia X Performance come with fingerprint scanner, the Xperia XA lacks one.advertisementThe new Xperia X phones boast of an all-metal body and will be available in the colours Graphite black, White, Lime Gold and Rose Gold in summer 2016.Also Read: LG G5 quick review: Something different, something playful The Xperia Ear is Sony’s next-generation wireless ear-piece that provides information such as your schedule, weather and the latest news on the go and also responds to voice commands. Connectivity options include: NFC and Bluetooth. The ear-piece comes with IPX2 water-protection and all-day battery life, according to the company.At the same time, the company also unveiled a number of smart product concepts like Xperia Eye and Xperia Projector.
Australia’s Masters squads commence their 2015 World Cup campaign this weekend when the contingent trains together in Sydney. The six squads will train over the weekend with all squad members looking to impress in their first camp in the lead up to the World Cup in April/May next year at C.Ex Coffs International Stadium, Coffs Harbour. There has been strong interest in all the squads due to the World Cup being on home soil in 2015, with the last World Cup held in Australia being 15 years ago. Australia will be looking to retain the Masters World Cup trophy that they won at the 2011 World Cup in Edinburgh, Scotland.Touch Football Australia wishes all squad members the best of luck for the training camp this weekend. To keep up-to-date with all the latest news and information from the Masters Training Camp, please stay tuned to the Touch Football Australia social media pages and website:Website – www.touchfootball.com.auFacebook – www.facebook.com/touchfootballaustralia Twitter – www.twitter.com/touchfootyaus Instagram – www.instagram.com/touchfootballaustralia Related LinksMasters Training Camp
Marco Silva demands Everton responseby Ansser Sadiq10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveMarco Silva wants his side to show their quality in their next game on New Year’s Day.The Toffees ended 2018 with a disappointing loss to Brighton, which put them 10th in the league.Their manager now wants them to bounce back against Leicester City at home.”It is important to be strong again and ready for the next match in three days,” Silva told the club’s website.”We don’t have time to prepare in the normal way but that is the schedule and we have to put in our players’ minds how important the next game is.”We have to change our recent form at home and give a different answer.”It will be a tough match but we have to give 100 per cent to win it.” About the authorAnsser SadiqShare the loveHave your say
OTTAWA – Conservative MP Blaine Calkins wants the federal ethics watchdog to reconsider her decision to allow the former chief of staff to Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr to go work for a Calgary-based energy company.Janet Annesley, who left Parliament Hill early last month, is now senior vice-president of corporate affairs at Husky Energy.The Conflict of Interest Act says an ex-staffer at her level cannot work for a company with which she has had “direct and significant dealings” in the last year, but Husky says Ethics Commissioner Mary Dawson told Annesley she was OK to take the job.Annesley, who has years of experience in communications and lobbying for the oil industry, is prevented from dealing with Natural Resources Canada during a one-year cooling off period.She is also barred from lobbying the federal government for five yearsHusky says both the company and Annesley understand the rules.In a letter to Dawson, Calkins notes the Husky website says Annesley will be in charge of “developing relationships,” including with governments.Calkins says Canadians would find it “difficult to believe” her job requirements would not involve violating the act and urged Dawson to look again.Husky says it has no further comment and a spokeswoman for Dawson says she will review the letter.