He has very clear advice for anybody wanting to follow in his footsteps. Aspiring jockeys in Tipperary are being advised to complete their schooling before they turn professional.Ken Whelan, who was a jumps rider for over 20 years, says it’s good to have something to ‘fall back on’ if you don’t succeed in what is a very competitive sport.The Waterford native is currently a jockey’s agent working out of Cashel.
Kyrgyzstan weightlifter Izzat Artykov has become the first Rio medallist to test positive for a banned substance and has been stripped of his bronze.The Court of Arbitration for Sport said the 22-year-old’s “medal is forfeited” and “he is excluded from the Games” after testing positive for strychnine.The reallocation of the bronze medal is the responsibility of the weightlifting federation and the IOC.Colombian Luis Javier Mosquera Lozano would be the weightlifter to move into the bronze medal position, having finished fourth.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
As for Uganda, this is their first appearance at the AFCON finals since 1978 and coach Milutin Sredojevic’s side have triumphed just by qualifying.However, the Cranes shouldn’t be written off – something Ghana supporters know all too well after seeing their side held to a goalless draw on home soil by the East Africans in a World Cup qualifier back in October.The teams have clashed in 10 previous matches, according to FIFA’s official statistics, with three wins apiece. Their last AFCON tournament meeting was the final of the 1978 edition when Ghana won 2-0 in Accra.Black Stars coach Avram Grant has admitted that Uganda – and Group D overall – will be a difficult assignment for the four-time AFCON champions.“We need to know that the first game against Uganda is a very difficult game because we saw them beat Slovakia 3-1,” Grant told 3Sports, as quoted by GHANASoccernet.“We know we have a tough group. But also the other teams know that we are tough for them. So first we need to qualify.”Key playersGhana – Asamoah GyanGhana’s all-time leading scorer and captain, Asamoah Gyan is a definite starter if he is fit. However, the veteran striker has struggled with a series of injuries in the past year and the Black Stars will be praying his body stays together for the duration of their AFCON campaign.Uganda – Farouk MiyaRegarded as one of the most promising young players in African football, Farouk Miya scored the goal which secured Uganda’s qualification for the 2017 AFCON. The 21-year-old attacker will hope to use the tournament in Gabon as a launch pad to take his career to even greater heights.Head-to-HeadGhana FIFA ranking: 54Uganda FIFA ranking: 73Matches played: 10Ghana wins: 3Uganda wins: 3Draws: 4Ghana goals scored: 10Uganda goals scored: 8Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Ghana will look to get their Group D campaign at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations off to a fast start today when they face Uganda.The teams will meet in Port-Gentil on January 17, kick-off at 5pm.Ghana come to the 2017 AFCON looking to end their long wait for a fifth African crown, having last lifted the trophy back in 1982. They came so close in Equatorial Guinea two years ago, but ultimately succumbed to Ivory Coast in the final.
Midway through the first half the Super Eagles really should have claimed the lead, with Kelechi Iheanacho providing a low pass across the face of goal to find Oghenekaro Etebo, but his effort flashed wide of the far post.South Africa settled into the match, but struggled to pose much of an attacking threat. However, they almost broke the deadlock in the 42nd minute when Nigeria goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi dropped Tebogo Langermanâ€™s cross and Themba Zwane reacted quickly to the loose ball, only to hit the upright with his toe-poked shot.Bafana Bafana found themselves defending for most of the early stages in the second half, but on 54 minutes they claimed the lead through Rantie, who met Ramahlwe Mphahleleâ€™s cross and beat Akpeyi at his near post with a downward header.With 20 minutes of regulation time remaining the visitors should have doubled their lead, with a counter attack opening up a chance for Zwane, who again beat Akpeyi only to see his effort rebound off the near post.On 78 minutes Nigeria almost forced an equaliser as Ahmed Musa and Etebo threatened in the penalty area and South Africa needed Dean Furman to make a desperate clearance from almost under his own crossbar.Yet the visitorsâ€™ second goal arrived in the 81st minute, with Keagan Dolly providing a perfectly weighted pass for substitute Tau, who sprinted clear, rounded Akpeyi and turned the ball into an empty net to end the game as a contest.Meanwhile, Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr analysed the game thus: â€œFirst, my young team – the youngest of all the teams playing in the qualifying series – had a very good first half.They played well but they didnâ€™t score. In the second half, the South Africans counter attacked us because our players were tired.â€œWe played against an experienced SA side, in the first half, we lost plenty opportunities and my players tired out in the second half.â€œWe made three offensive changes in the second half to add power to the attack. Going forward, we will make changes to the tactics.â€Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Â Players tired in second half, says RohrThe Bafana Bafana of South Africa claimed a historic victory by defeating Nigeriaâ€™s Super Eagles for the first time in a competitive fixture. South Africa deservedly emerged 2-0 victors in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Uyo saturday.Bafana Bafana, in their first match under new coach Stuart Baxter, put in a superb display marked by a resilient defence and speed on the counter attack, with second-half goals from Tokelo Rantie and Percy Tau taking them to a famous victory at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium.Nigeria enjoyed the lionâ€™s share of possession in the early stages and they created the first clear chance in the 11th minute when Wilfred Ndidi picked up on a loose ball on the edge of the box and sent a left-footed volley off target.
This summer’s World Cup will feature no English referees for the first time in post-war history, nor assistants, after FIFA confirmed its official list of 99 match officials for Russia 2018 yesterday.England whistler Mark Clattenburg, who retired from Premier League duty last summer, had been included on a pre-selected group drawn up by world ruling body FIFA two years ago.But his money-spinning move to Saudi Arabia left no English referees on FIFA’s World Cup list for the first time since before the second world war. The Football Association did ask world governing body FIFA to replace him with another official but it rejected the request.The referees representing UEFA-affiliated countries are from Germany, Turkey, Russia, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Serbia, Italy, Slovenia and France.In another snub to England, globally considered the creators of the ‘beautiful game’, no English assistants will officiate at the competition.FIFA’s decision comes amid the ongoing tension between Britain and Russia following the poisoning of ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, England.The incident, which has since led to tit-for-tat expulsions of foreign embassy staff, prompted Britain’s foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, to decide that no British dignitaries or members of the royal family will attend the competition, held 14 June – 15 July.LIST OF MATCH OFFICIALSReferees: Fahad Al Mirdasi (Saudi Arabia) Alireza Faghani (Iran) Ravshan Irmatov (Uzbekistan) Mohammed Abdulla Mohamed (United Arab Emirates) Ryuji Sato (Japan) Nawaf Abdulla Shukralla (Bahrain) Mehdi Abid Charef (Algeria) Malang Diedhiou (Senegal) Bakary Papa Gassama (Gambia) Ghead Grisha (Egypt) Janny Sikazwe (Zambia) Bamlak Tessema Weyesa (Ethiopia) Joel Aguilar (El Salvador) Mark W Geiger (U.S.) Jair Marrufo (U.S.) Ricardo Montero (Costa Rica) John Pitti (Panama) Cesar Arturo Ramos Palazuelos (Mexico) Julio Bascunan (Chile) Enrique Caceres (Paraguay) Andres Cunha (Uruguay) Nestor Pitana (Argentina) Sandro Ricci (Brazil) Wilmar Roldan (Colombia) Matthew Conger (New Zealand) Norbert Hauata (Tahiti) Felix Brych (Germany) Cuneyt Cakir (Turkey) Sergey Karasev (Russia) Bjorn Kuipers (Netherlands) Szymon Marciniak (Poland) Antonio Miguel Mateu Lahoz (Spain) Milorad Mazic (Serbia) Gianluca Rocchi (Italy) Damir Skomina (Slovenia) Clement Turpin (France)Assistant Referees: Yaser Khalil Abdulla Tulefat (Bahrain) Mohammed Al Abakry (Saudi Arabia) Taleb Al Marri (Qatar) Mohamed Alhammadi (United Arab Emirates) Abdulah Alshalwai (Saudi Arabia) Mohammadreza Mansouri (Iran) Abduxamidullo Rasulov (Uzbekistan) Toru Sagara (Japan) Jakhongir Saidov (Uzbekistan) Reza Sokhandan (Iran) Redouane Achik (Morocco) Waleed Ahmed (Sudan) Jean Claude Birumushahu (Burundi) Djibril Camara (Senegal) Jerson Emiliano Dos Santos (Angola) Abdelhak Etchiali (Algeria) Anouar Hmila (Tunisia) Marwa Range (Kenya) El Hadji Malick Samba (Senegal) Zakhele Thusi Siwela (South Africa) Frank Anderson (U.S.) Joe Fletcher (Canada) Miguel Angel Hernandez Paredes (Mexico) Juan Carlos Mora Araya (Costa Rica) Corey Rockwell (U.S.) Marvin Torrentera (Mexico) Gabriel Victoria (Panama) Juan Zumba (El Salvador) Carlos Astroza (Chile) Juan Pablo Belatti (Argentina) Eduardo Cardozo (Paraguay) Emerson De Carvalho (Brazil) Cristian De La Cruz (Colombia) Mauricio Espinosa (Uruguay) Alexander Guzman (Colombia) Hernan Maidana (Argentina) Christian Schiemann (Chile) Nicolas Taran (Uruguay) Marcelo Van Gasse (Brazil) Juan Zorrilla (Paraguay) Bertrand Brial (New Caledonia) Simon Lount (New Zealand) Tevita Makasini (Tonga) Anton Averianov (Russia) Mark Borsch (Germany) Pau Cebrian Devis (Spain) Nicolas Danos (France) Elenito Di Liberatore (Italy) Roberto Diaz Perez (Spain) Dalibor Djurdjevic (Serbia) Bahattin Duran (Turkey) Cyril Gringore (France) Tikhon Kalugin (Russia) Tomasz Listkiewicz (Poland) Stefan Lupp (Germany) Tarik Ongun (Turkey) Jure Praprotnik (Slovenia) Milovan Ristic (Serbia) Pawel Sokolnicki (Poland) Mauro Tonolini (Italy) Sander Van Roekel (Netherlands) Robert Vukan (Slovenia) Erwin Zeinstra (Netherlands).Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Akindele Akinsanya at the weekend emerged the winner of this year’s Southern Sun Ikoyi Golf Tournament that held at the Lakowe Lakes and Golf Resorts in Lagos.Udom Udoh and Remi Olukoya were the first and second runner-upin the men’s category of the tournament which attracted over 100 golfers to the beautiful course with breathtaking scenes. In the ladies category, Idowu Babalakin, Buday Chantal and Rita Okafor were the top three finishers to smile away with exciting gift items.The 18-hole event, which employed four-some format of play with the best three scores per hole counting, was the seventh edition of the annual tournament and was graced by business associates and friends of the hotel.It presented the participants the opportunity to network with pleasure as they enjoyed the tournament with a gamut of other activities.Speaking at the prize giving ceremony, the General Manager, Southern Sun Ikoyi, Mark Loxley, commended athletes, sponsors, guests and the media for taking out time to participate at the tournament despite the long drive and their busy schedules. He said it showed their commitment and consistent support to the hotel during the course of the year.“We have had tremendous support from our tournament sponsors again this year as more partners came on board to identify with our laudable cause. Southern Sun Ikoyi’s business partners are second to none and are always very generous in supporting this event.” Mr. Loxley notedHe further stated, “This event is in line with our annual Corporate Social Responsibility philosophy of giving back generously to the society that has supported our business and helped us grow.“It aims at bringing our corporate clients and guest together to end the year in grandeur through the game of golf which is renowned for its style, class and social wellbeing.”Also speaking at the prize giving ceremony, the Deputy General Manager of Southern Sun Ikoyi and athlete, Cliff Shiridzinodya, commended the level of sportsmanship showcased at this year’s edition of the annual golf tournament.“I have notice great improvement in the quality of participation and level of play, it is a great honour to compete with colleagues and friends within the industry through the gentleman’s game of golf as it is also my hope to join the podium in future tournaments” he concluded.Participants were gifted with various items including cable TVs, business and economy class tickets to various international travel destinations courtesy of the various tournament’s corporate sponsors.Sponsors for this year’s tournament include, EKEDC, DHL, Zenith Bank, Legacy Automobiles, Soulcomms, SO&U Ltd, GTBank, RwandAir, Air Namibia, KLM, Kenya Airways, Diamond Bank, Distell, South African Airways, DISTELL and Diageo.Others include; PZ Cussons, Heineken, Kwese’ TV, Aviators travel and Tours, IBEDC, The Wine Rack, GDN, African Sports tourism Week, The Lansdown Ibru Heights and Far East Mercantile Co Ltd.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
CHAMPIONS LEAGUERonaldo scores 125th Champions League goal in Juve draw with AjaxCristiano Ronaldo secured an away goal for Juventus as they drew the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final against Ajax last night.In the other quarter final of the night, Barcelona grabbed a valuable 1-0 away win at Old Trafford after Shaw turned a Luis Suarez header into his own net. Ronaldo, who has won the competition five times, netted his 125th goal in the competition with a diving header following Joao Cancelo’s cross just before half-time.The goal had come against the run of play, but the hosts equalised within a minute of the second half through David Neres’ fine curling effort from 15 yards.Both teams had late chances with Ajax’s Jurgen Ekkelenkamp having a shot saved before Juventus substitute Douglas Costa hit the post.But neither side could grab a winner and they meet in the second leg in Turin on Tuesday, 16 April.The winners of the tie face either Tottenham or Manchester City in the semi-finals, with Mauricio Pochettino’s side holding a 1-0 advantage after Tuesday’s first leg in London.At Old Trafford, Manchester United must produce another unlikely Champions League comeback to keep their hopes alive after Barcelona left Old Trafford with a slender advantage following the quarter-final first leg.Barcelona, with superstar Lionel Messi quiet by his standards, were nowhere near their best but secured the win after Luis Suarez’s far post header from the Argentine’s pass deflected in off Luke Shaw in the 12th minute and was confirmed by the video assistant referee after initially being given offside.New Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer can take heart from his team’s great endeavour but opportunities were at a premium, the best being a first-half header from Diogo Dalot that he directed off target. In fact United did not muster a single shot on target.Barcelona still posed a threat, with David de Gea saving from Philippe Coutinho and Messi – and United must now repeat their last-16 heroics against Paris St-Germain in France when they travel to the Nou Camp chasing a semi-final spot against Liverpool or Porto.Manchester United’s players took the applause of Old Trafford – but it was acknowledgment of a plucky effort rather than praise for any serious quality.United had excellent performers, with youngster Scott McTominay delivering a performance of real maturity, but the bottom line was that they barely laid a glove on Barcelona all night.And the frustration for the Premier League side will be that this should be regarded as a missed opportunity because Barcelona were light years away from their flowing best here.This was the first time United have failed to have a shot on target in a Champions League game since March 2005, when they lost away to AC Milan.Solskjaer and his side are left hoping for the same sort of miracle that saw them overcome a 2-0 home defeat to come through the last 16 against PSG – but lightning does not usually strike twice, Barcelona are a superior side and the Red Devils have won only once in the Nou Camp, when they beat Bayern Munich there in the 1999 Champions League final.United will summon up those spirits but this is very much odds against once more.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Gianni Infantino has been re-elected as president of football’s world governing body Fifa for a second term.The Swiss-Italian, 49, was re-elected until 2023 without opposition at Fifa’s annual congress in Paris.He succeeded Sepp Blatter in 2016 and has increased the number of teams at the 2026 World Cup and proposed key changes to the Club World Cup. Ex-president Blatter was in charge for 17 years until he was banned amid a corruption scandal.Infantino’s re-election was marked by a round of applause, after rules were changed earlier in the day to no longer require a vote from Fifa’s 211 members if only one candidate was standing.In a lengthy speech at the congress, Infantino focussed on the relative calm of his first term in charge compared to the situation he inherited.“Nobody talks about crisis at Fifa any more or rebuilding it from scratch,” he said.“Nobody talks about scandals or corruption, we talk about football. We can say that we’ve turned the situation around.“This organisation has gone from being toxic, almost criminal, to being what it should be – an organisation that develops football and is now synonymous with transparency, integrity.”Former Uefa secretary general Infantino was behind the expansion of the World Cup from 32 teams to 48 for the 2026 tournament, which will be held in the United States, Canada and Mexico.Plans to bring the expansion forward to the 2022 World Cup were however abandoned last month.In March, Fifa approved Infantino’s plans for a 24-team Club World Cup starting in 2021, despite top European clubs saying they would boycott the tournament.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram FIFA President Infantino (second left), CAF President Ahmad (left), CAF 1st VP/NFF President Pinnick (second right) and CAF 2nd VP Omari Constant Selemani (right) after the FIFA Congress in Paris, Wednesday
The third edition of the annual 4-Inch Heel Race competition has been slated for November 15 at the Yaba College of Technology Sports Centre.According to the organisers, DAK Marketing Services Limited, the 4-Inch Heel Race competition is a special sport event aimed at creating excitement, entertainment and confident among young women in Nigeria. It is the first of its king in Nigeria and Africa as a whole.Young Nigerian women between the ages of 15-35 are entitled to participate in the competition wearing 4-inch high heeled shoe to compete in a 100-meter race. Over the last two years, DAK marketing services limited has successfully hosted the competition, with the last edition held at the main bowl of the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos.Speaking with journalists at a press conference held at the Lagos State Polytechnic, the Managing Director and CEO, DAK Marketing Services Limited, Elder Dede Kalu, stated that the event is geared towards giving young Nigeria women a platform to showcase their talents and also to support their dreams.“This event is aimed at empowering and enlightening young ladies on how to be smart and confidence on high heels. The rationale behind this event is that we are concerned about the numerous injuries ladies encounter almost on a daily basis when walking on the streets wearing high heels because of lack of confidence to walk smartly,” Kalu said.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram