Advertisements


USA / Russia. – Austria, Finland and Switzerland offer to host future summits between the United States and Russia

04/14/2021 Joe Biden, President of the United States of America. Foreign State International AP / POL / ABACA / Zuma Press / Liaison Officer of.....»»

Category: lifestyleSource: abscbn abscbnApr 17th, 2021

UEFA confirms seeding pots for unusual Euro 2020 draw

NYON, Switzerland (AP) — UEFA has confirmed seeding pots for the 2020 European Championship, where some teams are slotted into groups ahead of the draw next week. An unusual draw for the 24-nation tournament is made Nov. 30 — four months before four final entries are decided in a playoffs round — and with seven of the 12 host nations already allocated to groups giving them home games in the tournament. The 20 direct qualifiers are ranked according to points gained and goal difference tiebreakers in 10 preliminary groups completed this week. Top-ranked Belgium, which is not a host nation, has to be pooled with Russia and Denmark in Group B played in St. Petersburg and Copenhagen. Either Wales or Finland from seeding pot 4 will complete that group. Ukraine in top-seeded pot 1 cannot be pooled with Russia for security reasons so had to be placed with the Netherlands in Group C, being played in Amsterdam and Bucharest. Romania could qualify through the playoffs in March. UEFA holds a separate draw Friday to finalize the 16-team playoffs in four separate knockout brackets. The playoffs lineup includes four host nations — Hungary, Ireland, Romania, Scotland — who must be given home games if they advance. Kosovo is in the fourth-tier playoffs and, because UEFA ruled the Balkan nation cannot be drawn with Russia for security reasons, the winner of that bracket could not be drawn in Group B. The finals tournament draw is made on Nov. 30 in Bucharest. Euro 2020 kicks off June 12 with Italy opening Group A in Rome. The final is July 12 at Wembley Stadium in London. ___ Pot 1: Belgium (Group B), Italy (hosts — Group A), England (hosts — Group D), Germany (hosts — Group F), Spain (hosts — Group E), Ukraine (Group C). Pot 2: France, Poland, Switzerland, Croatia, Netherlands (hosts — Group C), Russia (hosts — Group B). Pot 3: Portugal, Turkey, Denmark (hosts — Group B), Austria, Sweden, Czech Republic. Pot 4: Wales, Finland, Playoff winner Path A, Playoff winner Path B (includes Ireland — Group E), Playoff winner Path C, Playoff winner Path D......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 21st, 2019

US Open 19: As usual, Djokovic, Nadal, Federer lead the way

By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press Men to watch at the U.S. Open, where play begins Monday: ___ NOVAK DJOKOVIC Seeded: 1 Country: Serbia Age: 32 2019 Match Record: 38-7 2019 Singles Titles: 3 Career Singles Titles: 75 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 16 — U.S. Open (3: 2011, 2015, 2018), Australian Open (7: 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2019), French Open (1: 2016), Wimbledon (5: 2011, 2014, 2015, 2018, 2019) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-Won Championship, 2017-Did Not Play, 2016-Runner-Up, 2015-W, 2014-Lost in Semifinals Aces: Has won 4 of past 5 major tournaments, 33 of past 34 Grand Slam matches. ... Reached at least semifinals in each of last 11 U.S. Open appearances. Topspin: At the moment, it's hard to pick against Djokovic, in general, but especially on his preferred hard courts — and when the stakes are greatest. Matchup to Watch For: Could play Sam Querrey in 2nd round, three-time major champ Stan Wawrinka in 4th round. ___ RAFAEL NADAL Seeded: 2 Country: Spain Age: 33 2019 Match Record: 41-6 2019 Singles Titles: 3 Career Singles Titles: 83 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 18 — U.S. Open (3: 2010, 2013, 2017), Australian Open (1: 2009), French Open (12: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019), Wimbledon (2: 2008, 2010) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-SF, 2017-W, 2016-4th, 2015-3rd, 2014-DNP Aces: Closing in on 750 consecutive weeks ranked in the top 10; only Jimmy Connors (789) has more. Topspin: Chances of getting closer to Roger Federer in Grand Slam title chase depend on how body holds up. ... Retired from his semifinal against Juan Martin del Potro a year ago in New York. Matchup to Watch For: Plays John Millman, who beat Roger Federer in New York last year, in 1st round. ___ ROGER FEDERER Seeded: 3 Country: Switzerland Age: 38 2019 Match Record: 39-6 2019 Singles Titles: 3 Career Singles Titles: 102 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 20 — U.S. Open (5: 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008), Australian Open (6: 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2017, 2018), French Open (1: 2009), Wimbledon (8: 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2017) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-4th, 2017-QF, 2016-DNP, 2015-RU, 2014-SF Aces: 62-minute loss to Andrey Rublev this month was quickest tour exit since 2003 and left Federer with just 1 hard-court match victory on the tuneup circuit. ... Turned 38 on Aug. 8; no man that old has won a Slam title in the professional era. Topspin: Since 6 consecutive U.S. Open finals from 2004-09, has been back to the title match only once. But there's a lot less tread on his tires this time. Matchup to Watch For: Could play Lucas Pouille in 3rd round. ___ DOMINIC THIEM Seeded: 4 Country: Austria Age: 25 2019 Match Record: 31-12 2019 Singles Titles: 3 Career Singles Titles: 14 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: RU, French Open (2018, 2019) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-QF, 2017-4th, 2016-4th, 2015-3rd, 2014-4th Aces: Has beaten No. 1-ranked player in each of past 3 seasons, including Djokovic in 2019. Topspin: As good on hard courts as clay, with only 1 major quarterfinal so far, but if the draw breaks his way, could return to Week 2. Matchup to Watch For: Could play Gael Monfils or Felix Auger-Aliassime in 4th round. ___ DANIIL MEDVEDEV Seeded: 5 Country: Russia Age: 23 2019 Match Record: 44-16 2019 Singles Titles: 2 Career Singles Titles: 5 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: 4th, Australian Open (2019) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-3rd, 2017-1st, 2016-DNP, 2015-DNP, 2014-DNP Aces: Leads tour in match wins, hard court wins (31-8), final appearances (6). ... Reached finals at past 3 tournaments, all on hard courts. Topspin: A lesser-known, younger player who could make a major quarterfinal for first time — as long as he's not too exhausted. Matchup to Watch For: Could play Fabio Fognini in 4th round. ___ STEFANOS TSITSIPAS Seeded: 8 Country: Greece Age: 21 2019 Match Record: 37-18 2019 Singles Titles: 2 Career Singles Titles: 3 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: SF, Australian Open (2019) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-2nd, 2017-DNP, 2016-DNP, 2015-DNP, 2014-DNP Aces: Enters on 3-match losing streak. ... Already had defeated Djokovic, Nadal and Federer before turned 21, youngest player with a win against each member of the Big Three. Topspin: Still dealing with inconsistency but serving, volleying and court coverage are strong enough for a strong performance in his second U.S. Open. Matchup to Watch For: Plays Andrey Rublev in 1st round; could play Nick Kyrgios in 3rd round. ___ TAYLOR FRITZ Seeded: 26 Country: United States Age: 21 2019 Match Record: 26-21 2019 Singles Titles: 1 Career Singles Titles: 1 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 0 — Best: 3rd, U.S. Open (2018) and Australian Open (2019) Last 5 U.S. Opens: 2018-3rd, 2017-2nd, 2016-1st, 2015-DNP, 2014-DNP Aces: Lost to Dominic Thiem in New York the past two years. ... Cracked ATP top 25 in August, youngest American man that high since Andy Roddick in 2004. Topspin: If he keeps up his year-by-year progress at Flushing Meadows, due to make Week 2 Slam debut. Matchup to Watch For: Plays Feliciano Lopez in 1st round......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 23rd, 2019

France detains soccer great Platini in 2022 World Cup probe

By John Leicester and Samuel Petrequin, Associated Press PARIS (AP) — French police investigating whether corruption played a role in the stunning decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar took 1980s soccer superstar and former top executive Michel Platini into custody Tuesday for questioning. Platini's representatives denied any wrongdoing on his part, saying he is "absolutely confident in the future" and has "strictly nothing to reproach himself for." Also questioned Tuesday were two one-time associates of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, adding a layer of political intrigue to the investigation of the hugely controversial decision to hold soccer's showcase tournament in a desert country so scorching hot in June and July that the matches will be played instead in November and December. As head of European soccer's governing body UEFA, Platini was the continent's top representative on the FIFA committee that picked Qatar in 2010. The closed-door, secret-ballot vote baffled many at the time, not least because the Persian Gulf nation has no soccer pedigree to speak of. But gas-rich Qatar is pouring billions into the world's most popular sport and has the means to finance new stadiums. Platini, 63, was taken into custody after being summoned to a French police anti-corruption and financial crimes office outside Paris, a judicial official told The Associated Press, confirming a report by online publication Mediapart. The official was not authorized to discuss the investigation and spoke on condition of anonymity. French authorities did not announce any charges against the soccer legend or say exactly what he was being asked. He can be held for questioning for up to 48 hours, after which he can be either released or formally charged. It was the latest turn in a string of scandals in recent years that have brought down dozens of soccer officials from FIFA and other organizations over such offenses as vote-buying, kickbacks and bribery. French prosecutors are known to be investigating an array of winning bids for major sports events, including the 2018 World Cup, awarded to Russia, the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo and track and field world championships. Qatar beat the long-favored United States 14-8 when FIFA selected the host country for the 2022 World Cup. Former FIFA President Sepp Blatter, who presided over the vote, has accused Platini of backing out of a secret "gentleman's agreement" to award the tournament to the United States after meeting with Sarkozy, France's president at the time. Platini's representatives said he was taken into custody only for "technical reasons." His lawyer, William Bourdon, explained that police wanted to ensure that Platini and other witnesses couldn't confer with each other about their accounts. Also detained Tuesday was Sophie Dion, a former sports adviser in Sarkozy's administration, the judicial official said. She was released late in the evening. Claude Gueant, former secretary general of the Elysee presidential palace under Sarkozy, was questioned as a witness and not detained. French prosecutors previously questioned Blatter. Ahead of the FIFA vote, Sarkozy hosted a meeting in November 2010 that brought Platini together with Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, then the crown prince of Qatar and now its ruling emir. Al-Thani also owns the French soccer club Paris Saint-Germain, and Sarkozy frequently attends its games. Platini has long insisted that the meeting did not influence his vote for Qatar less than two weeks later. "Sarkozy never asked me to vote for Qatar, but I knew what would be good," he told the AP in 2015. But in the same interview, he also said that he "might have told" American officials earlier that he was going to vote for the United States' bid. Blatter quoted Platini as saying ahead of the vote: "I am no longer in your picture because I have been told by the head of state that we should consider the situation of France." FIFA had no comment on Platini's detention and said it has made a "full commitment to cooperating with the authorities." As a player, Platini was one of the best ever, a creative midfielder who lit up the pitch for club and country. He helped France reach the World Cup semifinals in 1982 and 1986 and led his national team to the 1984 European Championship title. He also played club soccer for Nancy and Saint-Etienne before switching to Italian club Juventus. He won three straight Ballon d'Or titles as the best player in Europe while playing for Juventus from 1983 to 1985. Both Platini and Blatter were toppled from their positions at the top of soccer in 2015. Platini was banned by FIFA for financial misconduct in connection with a $2 million payment authorized by Blatter — a suspension set to expire in October. ___ AP Global Soccer Writer Rob Harris in Nice, France, and AP Sports Writer Graham Dunbar in Geneva contributed......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 19th, 2019

Former FIFA head Blatter: Sarkozy meeting key to Qatar vote

By Graham Dunbar, Associated Press GENEVA (AP) — Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter says the arrest of soccer great Michel Platini as part of a French corruption probe lends weight to his version of how the United States lost the 2022 World Cup vote to Qatar. Blatter told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he has insisted for years that the result of the 2010 vote was swayed by a meeting in Paris two weeks earlier involving then-French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Platini and Qatar's future Emir. Blatter spoke hours after Platini, the former France midfielder who was the UEFA president at the time of the vote, was detained in Paris on Tuesday by French authorities who also questioned two former Sarkozy aides. "It's all detailed — what I always said," Blatter told the AP in a telephone interview from Zurich, citing the twobooks he has published since being banned by FIFA. Qatar beat the long-favored U.S. 14-8 in a final round of voting by a since-discredited FIFA executive committee. Most of the voters have since been banned by FIFA — including Blatter and Platini — indicted by the U.S. Department of Justice, or implicated elsewhere in financial wrongdoing. Two weeks ahead of the vote in Zurich, Platini had been hosted by Sarkozy at the French presidential residence, and met senior Qatari officials including then-crown prince Sheikh Tamim. According to Blatter, that Élysée Palace lunch changed the course of FIFA's plan to award the 2018 World Cup to Russia and the 2022 edition to the U.S. on the same day. "Platini phoned me and said, 'Listen, president, our gentlemen's agreement which we have made inside the FIFA executive committee will have difficulties to work,'" Blatter said Tuesday. In Blatter's version, Platini — who in 2015 acknowledged switching sides — and three other voters from European soccer body UEFA changed their planned American support. "It was four votes which have disappeared," he said. "If you change the four votes then the winner will be the USA." Platini has long insisted that the meeting did not influence his vote for Qatar less than two weeks later. "Sarkozy never asked me to vote for Qatar, but I knew what would be good," he told the AP in 2015. But, in the same interview, he also said that he "might have told" American officials earlier that he was going to vote for the United States' bid. On Tuesday, Platini's representatives denied any wrongdoing on his part, saying he is "absolutely confident in the future" and has "strictly nothing to reproach himself for." The 83-year-old Blatter, who is serving a six-year ban by the FIFA ethics committee, was interviewed as a potential witness by French investigators in Zurich in April 2017. On a day of intrigue for Blatter, the attorney general for Switzerland was recused from overseeing a sweeping criminal investigation of FIFA officials. The Swiss, French and American cases have shared information and evidence over the past five years, since the Blatter-led FIFA filed a complaint in 2014 about suspected money laundering in the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding contests. Now, Switzerland's federal criminal court removed attorney general Michael Lauber from his department's case because of undeclared meetings with current FIFA president Gianni Infantino. The federal court says it upheld requests by two claimants it did not identify. "Now I get part of my trust and confidence in the Swiss justice back," said Blatter, who has been a criminal suspect since September 2015 but never charged. He denies wrongdoing in a case which ended his 18-year FIFA presidency, and asked Tuesday: "Why the hell is not all over yet?" Criminal proceedings against Blatter are among at least 25 opened by Lauber's federal prosecution team in the wider soccer probe. Lauber's job has been at risk since two 2016 meetings with Infantino were revealed last November in the Football Leaks series publishing confidential emails and documents from the soccer industry. A disciplinary case was opened against Lauber last month when an undeclared third meeting with Infantino in Bern in June 2017 was revealed. "This is an old story," Blatter said of the investigations against him, adding he is recovering from knee replacement surgery four weeks ago. "I do hope that the Lord will give me enough time to live and to have a look at the end of this story.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 19th, 2019

FIFA to expand World Cup to 48 teams in 2026

GRAHAM DUNBAR, AP Sports Writer br /> ZURICH (AP) — FIFA will expand the World Cup to 48 teams, adding 16 extra nations to the 2026 tournament which is likely to be held in North America. President Gianni Infantino's favored plan — for 16 three-team groups with the top two advancing to a round of 32 — was unanimously approved Tuesday by the FIFA Council. It meets Infantino's election pledge of a bigger World Cup, and should help fund promised raises for FIFA's 211 member federations. With 80 matches instead of 64, FIFA forecasts the equivalent of $1 billion extra income at current rates from broadcasting and sponsor deals, plus ticket sales, compared to $5.5 billion revenue forecast for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. FIFA projects an increased profit of $640 million despite some extra operating costs and prize money for teams. FIFA's six continents should find out by May how many extra places they will each get. UEFA wants 16 European teams at the tournament, which is strongly favored to be played in North America. The CONCACAF region has not hosted the World Cup since the 1994 tournament in the United States. American, Canadian and Mexican soccer leaders have had informal talks about a co-hosting bid. Africa and Asia could be winners in a bigger World Cup with up to nine places each. They had only five and four teams, respectively, at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. Still, FIFA said it expects the standard of soccer to drop compared to the 32-team format locked in for the next two World Cups in Russia and Qatar. The 'absolute quality' of play, defined by high-ranked teams facing each other most often, is achieved by 32 teams, FIFA acknowledged in a research document sent to members last month. It made 10,000 tournament simulations to reach that conclusion. Instead, Infantino wants to create fervor and months of anticipation back home in the 16 extra nations which would qualify, some probably making their World Cup debut. FIFA has pointed to Costa Rica, Wales and Iceland as examples of teams which overachieved at recent tournaments. FIFA must break with soccer tradition to make its new format work after an original 48-team plan — with an opening playoff round sending 16 'one-and-done' teams home early — was unpopular. Instead, three-team groups will replace the usual groups of four to create simple progress to a knockout bracket. However, it leaves one team idle for final group games and could risk collusion between the other two teams. FIFA said it could guard against result-rigging by introducing penalty shootouts after group games that end in draws. Despite the 16 extra games, FIFA believes the current maximum of stadiums needed will stay at the 12 used by Brazil and Russia. However, the demand for more training bases and hotels means developed countries would be better equipped to win future hosting contests. North America is the strong favorite for 2026 because European and Asian countries are blocked by a FIFA rule excluding continents which hosted either of the two previous tournaments. Russia will host the World Cup next year and Qatar in 2022. South America has been focused on a centenary tournament including original 1930 host Uruguay, and African nations are seen as lacking existing capacity and unlikely to fund multi-billion dollar infrastructure spending. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 10th, 2017

WHO warns of drawn out pandemic as South Africa cases top 500,000

The UN health agency warned that the coronavirus pandemic would be lengthy and could lead to “response fatigue”, as the case count in South Africa topped half a million. Although many Latin American countries have begun relaxing stay-at-home measures, the virus is still spreading quickly across much of the region Six months after the World Health Organization declared a global emergency, the novel coronavirus has killed more than 680,000 people and infected more than 17.5 million, according to an AFP tally. South Africa is by far the hardest hit country in Africa, accounting for more than half of diagnosed infections, although President Cyril Ramaphosa said the fatality rate is lower than the global average. Health authorities had been expecting a surge in cases after the gradual loosening of a strict lockdown that was imposed at the end of March. Nigeria on Saturday also announced it would ease a lockdown in the commercial capital Lagos, allowing churches and mosques to reopen next week.  An emergency WHO committee reviewing the pandemic “highlighted the anticipated lengthy duration of this COVID-19 outbreak, noting the importance of sustained community, national, regional, and global response efforts”. “WHO continues to assess the global risk level of COVID-19 to be very high,” it said in its latest statement. The agency also said the effects of the pandemic “will be felt for decades to come”. Mexico overtook Britain to become the third hardest hit country in virus deaths — after Brazil and the United States — with more than 46,600 fatal cases. Although many Latin American countries have begun relaxing stay-at-home measures, the virus is still spreading quickly across much of the region, which has now recorded more than four million cases and almost 200,000 deaths. Half of them are in Brazil, where President Jair Bolsonaro said he believes “nearly everyone” will catch the virus eventually, after himself recovering from it. The US, the hardest-hit country in the world, has now tallied more than 4.6 million cases and 154,319 deaths. Vaccine race The outlook was bleak in Asia as well, where India and the Philippines reported record increases in new daily infections. “We are waging a losing battle against COVID-19, and we need to draw up a consolidated, definitive plan of action,” said an open letter signed by 80 Filipino medical associations. Japan’s Okinawa declared a state of emergency after a record jump in cases on the islands — many linked to US military forces stationed there. The pandemic has spurred a race for a vaccine with several Chinese companies at the forefront, while Russia has set a target date of September to roll out its own medicine. However, US infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said it was unlikely his country would use any vaccine developed in either nation. “I do hope that the Chinese and the Russians are actually testing the vaccine before they are administering the vaccine to anyone,” he said. As part of its “Operation Warp Speed”, the US government will pay pharmaceutical giants Sanofi and GSK up to $2.1 billion for the development of a COVID-19 vaccine, the companies said. ‘Day of freedom’ France, Spain, Portugal and Italy all reported huge contractions in their economies for the April-June quarter, while Europe as a whole saw gross domestic product fall by 12.1 percent.  Daily case numbers in Switzerland have crept up again in recent weeks, while Norway recorded its first virus death in two weeks. At least 36 crew members confined to a Norwegian cruise ship have tested positive for the new coronavirus, the operator Hurtigruten said on Saturday.  Despite the resurgence in cases, there have been demonstrations in Europe against the curbs.  Thousands protested in Berlin on Saturday urging “a day of freedom” from the restrictions, with some demonstrators dubbing the pandemic “the biggest conspiracy theory”. In South Korea, the elderly leader of a secretive sect at the centre of the country’s early coronavirus outbreak was arrested for allegedly hindering the government’s effort to contain the epidemic. People linked to Lee Man-hee’s Shincheonji Church of Jesus accounted for more than half of the South’s coronavirus cases in February and March, but the country has since appeared to have brought the virus under control. The pandemic has also continued to cause mayhem in the travel and tourism sectors, with more airlines announcing mass job cuts. Latin America’s biggest airline, the Brazilian-Chilean group LATAM, said it would lay off least 2,700 crew, and British Airways pilots overwhelmingly voted to accept a deal cutting wages by 20 percent, with 270 jobs lost......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 2nd, 2020

Russia confirms it will appeal 4-year Olympic ban

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia confirmed Friday that it will appeal its four-year Olympic ban for manipulating doping data. The Russian anti-doping agency, known as RUSADA, sent a formal letter disagreeing with the sanctions imposed earlier this month by the World Anti-Doping Agency. The case is now heading to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Next year's Olympics in Tokyo will be the third consecutive edition of the games preceded by a legal battle over Russian doping issues. RUSADA said it “disputes the (WADA) notice in its entirety," including the evidence of tampering with the data archive. The data was handed over in January and was meant to clear up past cover-ups, but has led to more legal tussles. RUSADA's own CEO, Yuri Ganus, attached his own note of protest to Friday's letter. Ganus is critical of Russian officials and had disagreed with the decision to appeal. He was overruled by his agency's founders, which include some of Russia's most influential sports leaders. The WADA sanctions ban the use of the Russian team name, flag or anthem at a range of major sports competitions over the next four years, including next year's Olympics and the 2022 soccer World Cup. Ganus said he believes any appeal has little chance of success and could even lead to harsher sanctions, including a ban of all Russian athletes, who under the current ban are allowed to compete as neutrals. “There is a possibility of entering the case new players which may demand from the court not to soften the sanctions but to toughen them,” Ganus said. "The sanctions regime that is in place against the Russian sport is not full, it is not a 100 percent. There were greater sanctions, up to a ban of all athletes." Russians will be allowed to compete in Tokyo as unaffiliated athletes if they pass a vetting process that examines their history of drug testing, and possible involvement in cover-ups at the lab. That has prompted anger from some Western athletes and organizations like the United States Anti-Doping Agency, which wanted a blanket ban on Russian athletes. The appeal was widely expected with Russian President Vladimir Putin having branded the ban “unfair.” RUSADA's supervisory board voted Dec. 19 to file an arbitration case with CAS in Switzerland after WADA ruled Russia had manipulated doping laboratory data to cover up past offenses. Putin has said it was not fair to threaten Russia with more doping-related punishment, and that any sanctions should be on an individual basis. “I think it is not just unfair but not corresponding to common sense and law,” Putin said. After a panel of three CAS arbitrators is chosen, a verdict will be issued within three months. Putin added that WADA's recommended four-year ban on Russia hosting major sports competitions would have little effect, pointing to the 2022 men's volleyball world championships as an event Russia intends to keep. WADA demands events are moved unless it's "legally or practically impossible" to do so, which could create a loophole for event organizers who don't want to break financial commitments. That ban already doesn't apply to next year's European Championship soccer games in St. Petersburg or the 2021 Champions League final, both of which are exempt because they're continental, not world, championships. Russia handed over the lab's doping data archive in January in return for having earlier sanctions lifted in 2018. WADA investigators found evidence that Russia was intensively editing the data in the weeks before the handover to remove signs of failed drug tests. Ganus has said he believes the editing took place, and he said a hearing reveal further evidence of data manipulation. “What are the risks? First of all, it is a public hearing, which will reveal to the whole world the supporting information of the official position of sports authorities on changes in the computer database,” Ganus said. WADA said it found fake messages spliced into chat logs in an apparent attempt to smear former lab director Grigory Rodchenkov, who's become a key witness for WADA since leaving Russia. Rodchenkov went public with allegations of a vast state-sponsored doping scheme after the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, where Russia was the top medal-winning country......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 28th, 2019

1 forecast shows US topping medal table at Tokyo Olympics

By Stephen Wade, Associated Press TOKYO (AP) — If the Tokyo Olympics were opening today, the United States would top the overall medal count and the gold-medal count. That's the forecast released Tuesday by Gracenote Sports, which supplies statistical analysis for sports leagues around the world. Simon Gleave, the head of sports analysis at Gracenote, said his model has the United States winning 51 gold medals, 34 silver, and 41 bronze for 126 overall. China is picked to finish second with 38 gold and 81 overall. Host nation Japan is third, which would be a strong showing for a country with a much smaller population than China or the United States. Japan is predicted to win 29 gold medals, 67 overall and take advantage of the "home-field advantage" that almost always goes to the host nation. Spain got a boost back in the '92 Barcelona Olympics, China jumped in 2008 in Beijing, as did Britain in London in 2012. The Tokyo Olympics open on July 24, 2020. The next seven countries ranked in order of overall medals are: Russia (65), Britain (43), Australia (43), France (41), Germany (38), Netherlands (34), and Italy (32). This is fifth forecast Gleave has put together and the record is solid. "Sometimes countries over-perform, or under-perform, and that's not to do with our model," Gleave told AP in an interview. "That just happens in sport." Three years ago in Rio de Janeiro, Gracenote picked the order of the top three countries correctly, and picked eight of the top 10 medal-winning countries. In the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, it correctly picked Norway to win a record number of medals and finish ahead of No. 2 Germany. It also picked the top four countries correctly, and in the correct order. Its predictions for seven of the top 10 countries were within one or two medals of their final totals. Russia is a major headache. Its track and field athletes are still banned from Tokyo following a widespread doping scandal. The governing body of track and field, the IAAF, has had a ban on the Russian athletics federation since 2015. Russia's medal total of course will be impacted by any change in eligibility. "If just before the Olympics, Russia is allowed to enter again it's going to be a bit of an issue," Gleave said of the medal predictions. Other highlights. — Britain finished in the top three in the last two Olympics, but is expected to fall out of that ranking. Look for Australia and Britain to be vying for a spot in the top five. — The Netherlands is picked to surpass its best overall medal total of 25 — that was 2000 in Sydney — and reach 34. — The second 10 in overall medal totals predicted are: South Korea (30), Hungary (27), Canada (25), Kenya (20), Spain (20), New Zealand (18), Ukraine (16), Brazil (15), Poland (14), and Turkey (14). — Women's participation in Tokyo will almost reach parity with men. Countries not promoting women's sports are sure to suffer in the medal standings......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 23rd, 2019

US, Mexico could team up and meet FIFA's World Cup need

GRAHAM DUNBAR, AP Sports Writer   ZURICH (AP) — The United States and Mexico could team up and meet FIFA's need for the biggest-ever World Cup in 2026 being staged by the most host nations. Canada has also joined the North American neighbors for informal talks about a three-way bid in a contest that FIFA will complete during American President-elect Donald Trump's first term, according to persons familiar with the talks. They spoke on grounds of anonymity because the talks are confidential. FIFA's decision Tuesday to expand the 2026 tournament — to 48 teams from 32, playing 80 games instead of 64 — increased the chances of co-hosting to share the load. 'In some regions not only does it make more sense, it's the only sense,' said FIFA vice president Victor Montagliani, who leads the Canadian soccer federation. 'I think when more countries share (hosting) it's an opportunity to grow the game.' Asked specifically about a potential three-way bid with the U.S. and Mexico, Montagliani said: 'It's definitely a possibility because the rules now allow for it. 'I also respect the fact that each country has the possibility to put on the World Cup (alone) and I think the discussions will happen quite soon as to what is our region is going to look like at this World Cup as I think it is an opportunity for CONCACAF.' U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati also took part in a unanimous FIFA Council decision. Though Mexico soccer leader Decio de Maria does not sit on FIFA's strategy-setting panel, he was also in Zurich with a top-level delegation from the regional soccer body, known as CONCACAF. The region was already favored to get its first World Cup since the U.S.-hosted 1994 edition, even before Tuesday's expansion decision. It now demands more high-quality training camps, hotels and transport for 48 teams, plus FIFA officials and hundreds of thousands of visiting fans. 'It means the number of countries that can host it without building major infrastructure and stadiums is limited,' said Gulati, adding his board has a 'fundamental decision' whether to bid. The U.S. could go alone, or bid with one or both neighbors. Uniting the U.S. and Mexico could win support from more than 20 Spanish-speaking federations among 211 FIFA members that now choose the World Cup hosts. It should also appeal to FIFA's sense of soccer having a role in society, amid tense cross-border relations caused by Trump's outspoken comments on Mexico. 'Listen, I'm a football guy, I'm not a politician,' said Montagliani, who like Gulati speaks fluent Spanish. 'The only thing I know from afar about Trump is that he's a big sports guy and he's proven that in the past ... so you would hope that football will trump politics. No pun intended.' FIFA typically looks for strong government support, and has it in the next two World Cup host nations Russia and Qatar. Russian deputy prime minister Vitaly Mutko is a FIFA Council member and attended Tuesday's meeting. FIFA has allowed co-costing at just one of 22 World Cups from 1930 through 2022, which included Mexico hosting alone in 1970 and '86. FIFA's former leaders later pledged not to repeat their 'two of everything' experience of 2002 in Japan and South Korea. Still, Infantino campaigned for the presidency last year promising an open mind about pan-regional hosting. FIFA's target is May 2020 to choose the 2026 host, though that could change during meetings being held in Bahrain in May. Asked if bidding could be accelerated if only three candidates emerged, and who all wanted to work together, Infantino said: 'It is premature to discuss about it now.' .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 11th, 2017

FIFA set to approve bigger, richer World Cup on Tuesday

GRAHAM DUNBAR, AP Sports Writer   FIFA is set to make the World Cup bigger and richer, even if the price to pay is lower quality soccer. FIFA President Gianni Infantino hopes his ruling Council will agree Tuesday to expand the 2026 World Cup to 48 nations, playing in 16 groups of three teams. A decision could be delayed if some Council members demand to know exactly how many qualifying places each continent will get before agreeing to scrap the 32-team format. It has been successful, popular and profitable since 1998 and is locked in for the next two World Cups in Russia and Qatar. The prize of 16 extra places, and the biggest increases to Africa and Asia, has 'overwhelming' support from FIFA's 211 member federations, Infantino has said. Their promise of extra funding from Zurich could also be secured by FIFA's forecast 20 percent rise in rights fees paid by broadcasters and sponsors. 'Financially, the 48-team format is the most appealing or successful simply because the sporting element is prevailing and every match is important,' Infantino said two weeks ago. 'The decision should not be financially driven, neither in terms of revenue or costs ... but the driver should really be the development of football and boosting football all over the world.' World Cup champion Germany is not in favor. It argued that diluting the number of European and South American teams — which won all 20 titles since 1930 — could 'strengthen the imbalance' seen at some tournaments. 'The (German soccer federation) fundamentally believe that the current 32-team format is the best option,' its president Reinhard Grindel said last week. Germany has no delegate at Tuesday's meeting though Grindel is set to join the FIFA Council in May. FIFA acknowledged the risk of lower standards in a research document sent to members last month, as first reported by The Associated Press. The 'absolute quality' of soccer, defined by high-ranked teams playing each other most often, is achieved by 32 teams, FIFA said, citing 10,000 tournament simulations made to reach that conclusion. Still, Infantino promised voters more World Cup places and funding raises before his election last February. FIFA expects $5.5 billion income tied to the 2018 World Cup in Russia, though 25 of 34 sponsorship slots are unsold. The research document predicted the equivalent of $6.5 billion revenue from a 48-team tournament in the '16x3' format, which would send two teams from each group to a new Round of 32 knockout bracket. All 80 matches would play in an exclusive time slot. Currently, 64 World Cup matches have 56 broadcast slots because the eight four-team groups play their last matches simultaneously. FIFA predicts organizing costs for '16x3' rising from $2 billion to $2.3 billion, giving a potential profit rise of $640 million. Though a '16x3' World Cup would still need a maximum of 12 stadiums, the demand for 16 more top-quality training camps and hotels suggests FIFA would look for 2026 hosts with existing capacity. A North American bid from two or three of the United States, Canada and Mexico is currently favored in a contest that could start within weeks. Five options are open Tuesday, including staying with 32 teams. Infantino campaigned last year on a 40-team promise, in either eight groups of five teams or 10 groups of four teams. Neither impressed voters in recent regional meetings of FIFA member federations. When the FIFA leader first proposed 48 teams, it included an opening playoff round. The 16 winners would join 16 seeded teams in a traditional 32-team group stage. FIFA members disliked 'one-and-done' teams going home before the 'real' World Cup kicks off. It would also stretch to a 39-day event with more short-notice travel for fans. Africa and Asia could be the big winners, and FIFA hopes new teams would include another Iceland, Wales and Costa Rica — over-achieving teams and feelgood stories at recent tournaments. Still, hapless Tahiti was outclassed at the 2013 Confederations Cup, conceding 24 goals in three games. 'The goal of expanding the FIFA World Cup,' it has told members, 'is to further advance the vision to promote the game of football, protect its integrity and bring the game to all.' ___ Entry quotas for 2018 World Cup: Europe 14 (including host Russia to qualify direct); Africa 5; Asia and South America 4.5 each; North, Central America and Caribbean 3.5; Oceania 0.5. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 9th, 2017

EU foreign ministers to meet on Navalny health as tensions with Russia soar

EU foreign ministers are set to meet virtually Monday for talks on the health of dissident Alexei Navalny, as the United States warned Moscow of "consequences" if the Kremlin critic dies in prison and tensions soared over a Russian military build-up on Ukraine's border......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsApr 19th, 2021

Russia warns of anti-white ‘aggression’ in US

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Thursday warned that anti-white racism might be building in the United States and said that political correctness “taken to the extreme” would have lamentable consequences. In an interview with political scientists broadcast on national television, Moscow’s top diplomat said Russia had long supported a worldwide trend that “everyone wants […] The post Russia warns of anti-white ‘aggression’ in US appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsApr 1st, 2021

Envoy returns to Moscow after & lsquo;killer& rsquo; row

Russia’s ambassador to the United States landed in Moscow on Sunday after being recalled for emergency consultations over the worst crisis in relations with the United States in years......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsMar 21st, 2021

Russia asks US to “not play with fire” after new sanctions

Russia warned the United States not to “play with fire” after adopting sanctions against seven senior Russian officials, holding the Kremlin responsible, in response to.....»»

Category: newsSource:  thedailyguardianRelated NewsMar 3rd, 2021

Russia: US & lsquo;playing with fire& rsquo; by imposing sanctions

Moscow---Russia warned Wednesday it would “rebuff aggression” after the United States slapped Kremlin-linked officials with sanctions over the poisoning of opposition figure Alexei Navalny......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsMar 3rd, 2021

Russia is ready to conduct a “deep review” of relations with the United States

Madrid, February 17 (Europe Press) – Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said on Wednesday that Moscow was ready to conduct a “deep review” of.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsFeb 17th, 2021

Russia agrees with the United States to extend the nuclear disarmament treaty for a period of 5 years

Moscow Yesterday, the Russian government announced an agreement with the United States to extend the most important nuclear disarmament treaty for five years, which is.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 29th, 2021

US says strongly condemns arrest of Kremlin critic Navalny

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday the United States "strongly condemns" the arrest of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, who was detained when returning to Russia for the first time since his poisoning last summer......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJan 18th, 2021

Say goodbye to our own COVID-19 vaccine

In September last year, I raised this question in this space: Why didn't the Duterte administration even think of initiating the development of a vaccine or cure for COVID-19, and completely relied on other countries, such as China, Russia, United States and United Kingdom, to supply us with the vaccines that would allow us to achieve herd immunity against the dreaded disease?.....»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJan 14th, 2021

Recovery can start this Christmas season

  THE COVID-19 pandemic is still with us and in the rest of the world, where it is surging in a new wave of infections and deaths. We are fortunate the virus has not been as virulent in our country as it has been in the United States, India, Brazil, France, Russia, Spain, United Kingdom, Argentina, Italy, and […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  tempoRelated NewsNov 24th, 2020