BRISBANE, Australia (AP): Milos Raonic got one back on Roger Federer to start the new season. After losing coach Ivan Ljubicic to the Federer camp leading into 2016, Raonic achieved something nobody else born in the 1990s has managed to do against the 17-time major winner – beat him twice. The 25-year-old Canadian broke Federer’s serve once in each set of a 6-4, 6-4 win yesterday in the Brisbane International decider, reversing the outcome of their meeting in last year’s final at the Australian Open warm-up tournament. Ljubicic was in Federer’s corner for the final. Carlos Moya, who will join Raonic’s coaching crew, doesn’t arrive in Australia until next week. He’s got a good base to work off, starting with Raonic’s eighth career title and only his second win in 11 matches against Federer. It was a boost coming off a troubled end to 2015, when Raonic missed the last three weeks with a back problem, having missed the French Open earlier in the season with a foot injury, parted company with Ljubicic and finished out of the top 10. “It does great things – it signifies within the team how concrete and good the work we’re doing is,” Raonic said of his win. “At the same time, with the difficulties I’ve had last year, it’s maybe a good way for me to show the other guys I will face going in Melbourne, you know, I’ve got my stuff back together and I can play some good tennis again.” Raonic attacked top-seeded Federer with his booming serve and forehand, as expected, but also went to the net 13 times in the first set and won 10 of those points to put him on course for the win. Federer, who went 6-5 in finals in 2015 – with all five losses coming to top-ranked Novak Djokovic – struggled earlier in the week with lingering flu-like symptoms, but improved with four matches in four days, including wins over Grigor Dimitrov in the quarterfinals and Dominic Thiem in the semis. Raonic “did well. It was a tough match – (my) legs were a little bit wobbly,” Federer said. “Still, considering the week I’ve had, I’m actually quite happy. That’s why I’m not down or anything or disappointed. “If I would’ve known I would’ve made the finals five days ago I would’ve been unbelievably happy.” BIG BOOST
MEDIA CONTACTS • Siobhan McCarthy Head of communication Department of Home Affairs + 27 82 886 6708 USEFUL LINKS • Department of Home Affairs • Department of International Relations • South Africa Travel Advice RELATED ARTICLES • SA passport made more secure • UK promise visa flexibility • Expats allowed to vote overseas Khanyi Magubane South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs has introduced an innovative new system that will help speed up the processing of identity documents (IDs).According to the Identification Act of 1997 all South African citizens aged 16 years and older are required to carry an ID book as a positive form of identification. A citizen cannot vote or do certain banking transactions without a valid ID.The department’s new system enables officials to scan photos of ID applicants on to a computerised system, which then prints the image directly on the document.This will save officials time, as they no longer have to manually stick an applicant’s photo on his or her new ID.Until now home affairs has only used the digital system to process new South African passports, as a means of meeting international standards.The system, known as live capture, is part of the department’s turnaround strategy, which involves a complete overhaul of document-processing methods.Some 20 home affairs offices in the country have now been fitted with live capture workstations. Each unit is valued at about R250 000 (US$31 000).The government plans to equip every home affairs office with such a workstation by the end of its turnaround drive in March 2011. The drive kicked off in April 2008.The live capture system is also able to digitally capture applicants’ signatures and fingerprints.This will dramatically reduce the department’s admin duties and mass of paperwork, as until now copies of all citizens’ fingerprints and ID photos have had to be manually collected and filed.The system is linked to the department’s headquarters in Pretoria, which means that once an ID applicant’s details have been logged at a regional home affairs’ office, it can instantly determine whether the applicant is on the South African Population Register.This will enable IDs to be processed at the home affairs office where the application is made, as opposed to forms being transported and processed in Pretoria and then returned to the regional office. Such a method will reduce the waiting time for a new ID.Moving to an online systemProblems with inaccuracy in the past have strengthened the department’s need to capture details electronically.For example there have been gender glitches where a male is erroneously registered as a female, or vice versa, and in some cases home affairs has declared a person dead when he or she is still very much alive.The new Minister of Home Affairs Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is adamant that the department needs to move in line with global standards. In many overseas countries citizens are able to apply for documents online.“It is very clear that home affairs does need to ensure we can capture data electronically,” she said, quoted in government’s online news publication Bua News.“Of course with the global economic situation we may not be able to move as fast as we would like, but we will be moving to greater online services,” she added.The minister said the goal is to digitise most of the work that’s currently done manually.“We would eventually want to move towards becoming a paperless department. This is our ultimate objective,” she said.But changing from the old to the new system has not been without glitches.In May 2009 home affairs offices in the process of changing over were beset by IT problems.At the time Home Affairs Director-General Mavuso-Msimang acknowledged that the temporary setback was an inconvenience to the public, but said the changeover was necessary.“Home affairs is moving from some very old technology to new, improved systems. It is the interfacing of these systems that has created some delays in the production of passports,” he said.“The technology upgrades are imperative to the department’s programme to improve service delivery and the security of the passport,” he added.Speeding up the processThe department is confident that it will be able to achieve a number of its goals by 2011.One of these is to reduce the time taken to issue valid documents such as birth, marriage and death certificates. In 2007 the process took between six and eight weeks. By 2011 the department hopes to issue the documents on the same day people apply for them.The time taken to grant temporary passports and other emergency travel documents such as diplomatic passports and crew member certificates – issued to airline pilots and cabin crew staff to facilitate travel –will also be reduced to one day by the end of 2009.Permanent and temporary citizenship certificates will take one month to issue by 2011, as opposed to the current six-month waiting period due to sluggish document processing.Part of the department’s strategy includes the 2009 launch of a campaign that will run for the next two years. Under this campaign the department will ensure that every child in South Africa up to the age of 14 has a birth certificate.Thousands of children born in deep rural areas in South Africa go without birth certificates because their parents are too far away from a home affairs office.The department’s turnaround strategy will also have a strong human resources component, as its ultimate success is dependent on well-trained, disciplined and competent staff.In the past this has not been the case.According to a strategy document issued by the department, “the current employees’ capacity in terms of numbers, competencies and utilisation are not at the levels required to meet service delivery demands”.“The department is also not able to attract and retain the critical skills it requires. It is thus important to be proactive in planning for future resources in line with service delivery requirements.”As a means of addressing these problems, the department’s human resources division is embracing a new leadership model.This entails an increased delegation of authority to line mangers, who will work directly with staff in processing documents and liaising with the public.The new model will go a long way in reducing tedious bureaucratic processes, as immediate managers will have the power to take decisions and resolve issues without having to consult a long line of senior staff.
The NSWTA State Conference aims to improve the delivery of Touch Football with a specific focus on our Affiliates and volunteers. Presentations are made throughout the weekend aimed to assist and enhance the ability of affiliates to provide a better product for our members. The Conference offers a tremendous opportunity to learn what other Touch Associations are doing as well the networking with members from across the State including Regional and State Officials.Delegates arriving on Friday, 25 July 2008 will be VIP Guests at the Vawdon Cup. On Saturday, 26 July 2008 a Blues Dinner will be held of which former Australian cricketer and commentator Kerry O’Keeffe. The Blues Dinner will recognise NSWTA best Affiliates, Regions, Administrators, Players, Juniors, Volunteers, Referees, Coaches and Selectors. The 2008 NSWTA Blues Awards winners and Hall of Fame inductees will also be recognised on the night.The nominees are:Affiliate of the YearSix regional winners and one State winner. SunsWagga TAKiama Juniors TA (Stingrays)Albion Park TA RebelsEast’s TAUNSW TABankstown Juniors TA MetsPenrith TALower Blue Mountains TABlacktown TA ScorpionsManly TARyde Eastwood TANorth’s TA HornetsPeninsula TAParkes TAWallsend TA EaglesGlen Innes TATamworth TAInverell Juniors TA Administrator of the Year John Ryan East’s TAJulie Andrews Wallsend TAElijah Van Der Kwast UNSW TALinda Bruce Glen Innes TA Region of the Year SunsHornetsMets Rod Wise Medal- Volunteer of the Year Kellie Johnston Wallsend TAChris Dolahenty Wagga TAGary Brickell Wollongong TA Coach of the Year Andrew Hawkins Wallsend TAPeter Forrester Canterbury TAMick McDonald Wests TAAnnette Mounsey Wollongong TA Selector of the Year Craig May Taren Point TABob Monkley Yass TAMel McMah Easts TATim Kitchingham Penrith TANatilee Sargeant State PanelMale Player of the Year Joel Willoughby Canterbury TAGary Sonda Canterbury TAJason Stanton Wests TASteve Roberts Canterbury TA Female Player of the Year Kristy Judd Easts TAClare Winchester Canterbury TANola Campbell Wests TALouise Winchester Canterbury TA Junior Male Player of the Year Ben Moylan Penrith TAMichael Singh Wests TANick Good Penrith TA Junior Female Player of the Year Nicky Albury Wests TAAmy Regal Wollongong TAStephanie Halpin Tamworth TA For all information regarding the NSWTA State Conference and Blues Dinner please visit www.nswtouch.com.au to stay up to date with developments.
About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Chelsea smash seven past Grimsby as debutante James shinesby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea demolished Grimsby Town by seven goals to one to secure their place on the Carabao Cup fourth-round on Wednesday.Teenager Reece James was excellent on debut, scoring and setting up two goals.Michy Batshuayi also took advantage of his first start of the season by scoring a brace.Ross Barkley, Pedro and Kurt Zouma also got on the scoresheet.Callum Hudson-Odoi rounded off the win in his first appearance since going down with an Achilles injury in April.
Jessica and Jerry Seinfeld hosted the Baby Buggy Summer Dinner, in partnership with Vanity Fair and supported by Giorgio Armani, at their home in the Hamptons on July 26.Scott Disick, Kourtney Kardashian and Jessica Seinfeld Attend Baby Buggy Summer DinnerCredit/Copyright: BFAAmong the guests were Alec Baldwin, Rachel Zoe, Roger Berman, Kourtney Kardashian, Scott Disick, Nacho Figueras, Delfina Blaquier, Ali Wentworth, George Stephanopoulos, Alina Cho, and Atlanta de Cadenet Taylor.Hilaria and Alec BaldwinCredit/Copyright: BFABaby Buggy, founded by Jessica Seinfeld in 2001, is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing families in need with essential equipment, products, clothing, and services for their infants and children up to age 12. With an extensive network of community-based organizations across the country, Baby Buggy has donated more than 7.3 million items to thousands of children.Rachel Zoe and Roger BermanCredit/Copyright: BFA
Two days after saying he would play in the London Olympics despite a serious eye injury, San Antonio Spurs star guard Tony Parker recants that prediction and says not playing is very much a possibility.Parker was caught in the middle of the now-infamous fight involving singer Chris Brown and members of hip-hop star Drake’s entourage.Parker’s cornea was scratched in the fight, and he had surgery to remove a shard that had ”penetrated 99 percent” of his left eye.”I almost lost my eye,” Parker said in an interview posted on his website Sunday.He did not join the rest of France’s team Wednesday and will see a specialist in New York when he is cleared to take long-haul flights after July 5.”I’m seeing a specialist in New York with the hope of being given the all clear to play in the Olympic Games,” Parker said. ”Spurs are very worried.”Anything can happen, including me being out of the Olympics. The decision doesn’t belong to me anymore. It’s in the hands of the doctor and San Antonio.”Parker said he has been having hallucinations and been unable to leave his hotel room for eight days because of the risk of infection. He also has to apply five different products into his eye every two hours.”Fear sets in,” Parker said of being told he would have to undergo surgery. ”An eye is so fragile. … I couldn’t believe it. But that’s life. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.”I didn’t have luck, but I came out well from my misfortune. It could have been worse. The rest of my career is not in question. I just have to wait for the injury to heal itself.”Chris Brown, his girlfriend and his bodyguard were among eight injured during the fight inside the W.i.P club in SoHo on June 15. Police say members of Drake’s entourage stopped Brown as he was leaving. The fight escalated and bottles were thrown.Parker is suing the New York City club for $20 million.
Same song, different verse.The San Antonio Spurs — after defeating the Miami Heat in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night — are one win away from a title. The score wasn’t close, 107-86 — the second game in a row that San Antonio dismantled Miami. But in Game 3, it was the Spurs’ offense overwhelming the Heat’s defense with a cascading set of inside-outside and side-to-side actions. In Game 4, the Spurs’ offense continued to perform at a high level, but it also tightened the screws defensively.The Heat scored at a rate of 99.1 points per 100 possessions in Game 4, more than 13 points lower than Miami’s playoff average. The Spurs controlled the middle of the floor, a factor that manifested in several ways.According to the NBA’s SportVU Player Tracking Box Score, San Antonio had an enormous rebounding advantage, not just in actual rebounds — 44 to 27 — but also in rebound chances (defined as any time a player is within 3.5 feetof a rebound), 68 to 46. The Spurs were consistently the aggressor around the basket.That aggressiveness also showed in Game 4’s shot-contesting stats. The Heat were 15 of 34 (44 percent) on shots in the paint. Coming into the game, the Heat had made 64 percent of their shots in the paint, by far the best mark of any team in the playoffs. The Heat — athletic and loaded with finishers — can score in the paint even when a defender is there to challenge a shot. But the Spurs have gotten more aggressive, and it is bothering the Heat in traffic.Miami’s Shooting WoesSan Antonio contested a slightly lower percentage of Miami’s shots in Game 4, but the Spurs were extremely effective, especially around the basket. The Heat couldn’t get shots to fall.The Heat have turned the ball over on 18.7 percent of their possessions in the finals, well above the 15.8 percent they had averaged in the regular season. Many of the steals the Spurs are generating have come close to the basket, stripping the ball from a shooter as he heads for the rim. On San Antonio, Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard have been particularly active in this regard, combining for 15 steals and seven blocks in the finals so far.The Spurs have strung together two of the best performances of the playoffs — one offensive and one defensive. It will take massive changes from Miami to push this series toward a competitive finish.
1Mike Trout28.61Mike Trout37.9 PLAYERWAR 5Alex Rodriguez22.95Ken Griffey Jr.30.1 5Al Kaline8.95Al Kaline15.4 3Ty Cobb9.53Ty Cobb15.7 2Ty Cobb46.7 As a result — and in concert with MLB labor mechanisms that force young stars to either play for peanuts through their arbitration years or lock themselves into long, below-market extensions (as Trout did in 2014, re-signing with the Angels through 2020) — Trout has produced a ton of surplus value for the Angels, relative to what he’s been paid. According to FanGraphs.com, Trout’s production would have been worth about $357 million on the open market since his MLB debut, a span over which he was paid only about $24 million.That’s why speculation that the Yankees are loading up for a Trout trade breaks down upon examination. At a glance, why not ship Trout away from a rebuilding team where his WAR is being wasted (aside, of course, from Angels fans who like to watch him play) to a huge market that has the prospects for a blockbuster deal? The answer: It would take a monster package of young talent to justify trading away a player who so outperforms his contract and probably will continue to do so for the next several years.If we apply Tom Tango’s simple WAR projection system with an average future value of $8.6 million per win,3Starting with a rough cost-estimate of $8 million per WAR next season, with 5 percent annual growth until 2020. the final four seasons of Trout’s contract figure to see him generate 32.5 WAR, for a market value of $282 million,4Including the yearly minimum salary of about $500,000. and be paid $122 million. So it probably won’t be until Trout’s next contract that the cost-benefit tradeoff of having him around begins to make a trade realistic for either the Angels or the team they’re negotiating with.At that point, the math gets a little silly. Even in the first year of his next deal, Trout’s WAR projects to be worth so much on the open market (roughly $75 million) that he’d need a truly paradigm-shifting contract — one that would basically double the highest annual salary of anybody in the game right now — to not be underpaid. With superstar free-agent deals, the question often isn’t whether they’ll be paid more than they’re worth, but by how much. Trout, however, is so good that it might be hard for him to earn fair market value even in his big post-prime payday.For now, that means Trout is probably stuck carrying the Angels. In the past, that would have also meant his chances of contending for the MVP were slim, despite his incredible individual numbers. But perhaps Trout’s win Thursday also signals a change in the way voting will be conducted going forward. The MVP electorate has been skewing more progressive for a while, in terms of its willingness to use sabermetric tools, and there’s nothing more open-minded than giving the MVP to the leader of a 74-88 team.But maybe it was also about Trout’s own particular greatness. No player has ever been so good at such a young age; it was likely that future generations would have looked at his repeated MVP snubs and wondered what the hell the voters were thinking to deny him the AL’s top individual award, over and over. WAR Through Age 22WAR Through Age 23 4Bryce Harper8.94Ken Griffey Jr.15.5 1Mike Trout48.5 3Ted Williams23.63Ted Williams34.2 a 3Mickey Mantle40.9 4Alex Rodriguez38.0 4Mel Ott23.54Mel Ott31.4 WAR Through Age 24 2Ty Cobb25.52Ty Cobb36.0 a PLAYERWAR 5Ken Griffey Jr.37.0 WAR Through Age 20WAR Through Age 21 2Mel Ott11.42Mel Ott17.9 Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout is widely acknowledged to be the best player in baseball and has been for quite some time. But for all his gifts, awards recognition has been hard for Trout to come by. Although Trout has led the American League in wins above replacement (WAR) for each of the past five seasons,1Ever since he first became a full-time player in 2012. he had only won MVP honors once going into Thursday night’s award announcement — and victory there was far from assured.Unlike in the past, though, when Trout’s horrid teammates were held against him in favor of some lesser player on a winning team, the voters broke with tradition and went for the player with stellar individual numbers. In winning the MVP, Trout became just the sixth player from a losing team to take home the hardware. It was a victory for the new ways of player evaluation and a more modern take on what the “valuable” part of MVP really means.But even if Trout hadn’t won the award, he could have taken the same solace he could last year: MVP or not, but he’s still tracking to be the G.O.A.T.Through every single age in which he played a full season,2Not including his age-19 season in 2011, when he logged only 40 games after a July call-up. Trout has been the all-time career leader in Baseball-Reference.com’s WAR for position players. It was true through age 20, age 21, age 22, age 23 and — after posting 10.6 WAR in 2016, a performance that basically matched his previous single-season peak — age 24. No player has ever started his career on this kind of tear — not Ruth, not Cobb, not Mantle, nobody. Mike Trout is (still!) the G.O.A.T. at any age Most career WAR through each age since 1901, among position players.Source: Baseball-Reference.com 1Mike Trout11.41Mike Trout20.7
AC Milan look set to begin proceedings to sign current head coach Gennaro Gattuso to a new contract ahead of their derby against arch-rivals Inter MilanSince replacing the fired Vincenzo Montella back in November, Gattuso has overseen an upturn in form for Milan and they have been unbeaten domestically in 2018.The former youth coach was promoted, despite no prior experience, and now taken lead Milan back into the race for a possible Champions League spot in the Serie A standings.“When we open our eggs this Easter, we’re going to find Gennaro Gattuso’s renewal inside,” said Milan’s sporting director Massimiliano Mirabelli, according to The 42.Maurizio Sarri satisfied despite Juventus’ draw at Fiorentina Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Maurizio Sarri was satisfied with Juventus’ performance on Saturday afternoon after finishing a tough game at Fiorentina 0-0.“I’ve been telling you for some time, although perhaps you only know him as a player, that Rino (Gattuso) is already an important coach and in the future will be one of the best in the world, so it’s only right that Milan keep hold of him.“We are working to start a new era with Gattuso, because we believe he is the right coach for a Milan that must be a protagonist over the next few years.“We all want it (contract), Rino like all of us, we just need to find the right time to do what we have to do.”
Vinicius Junior’s agent, Frederico Peña, is convinced that the Brazilian youngster will win the hearts of everybody sooner than expected.The main talk of the week despite all detractors has been Vinicius Junior without question, the new Real Madrid talent who has brought back hope to all the Madridistas that were heartbroken after Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure.Every single week that the fans looked at what the Portuguese player was doing in Italy, most of them wept because of how much they missed Ronaldo.They really needed a “pick me up” in the form of a new talent who could get them back on track, they believed that Neymar or Mbappé were the only answer for this void that Cristiano left.But they never imagined that Florentino Perez had an 18-year old ace up his sleeve in the form of Vinicius Junior, the Flamengo prodigy who is already making an impact in the club and has everybody in Madrid longing for a new star to be born.The lad’s development was delayed due to Julen Lopetegui’s ineptitude and inability to recognize talent in front of his very eyes, it was clear that Vinicius had something different the club needs right now and he could’ve saved the Spaniard’s career but his ego was bigger than that.HASTA FINAL, VAMOS REAL!! 💪🏾⚽️⭐️ pic.twitter.com/ex6OLWymmb— Vinicius Jr (@vini11Oficial) November 3, 2018Now that Santiago Solari has given him the chance to shine, the lad has seized the opportunity and sparked a worldwide debate about his role in Real Madrid despite his age.While there are still a lot of incredulous people who keep mocking the kid, the reality is that he has managed to change the landscape for Real Madrid overnight, Santiago Solari is even deciding right now if the lad is good enough to start the game against Viktoria Plzen in the Champions League.But looking at the people who are closest to him, his manager Frederico Peña is one of the people who are convinced of the player’s talents and he predicted that everybody will see Vinicius for what he truly is very soon: one of the best players in the world.Por ser quem sou e por tudo que superei na vida, eu te agradeço Deus 🙌🏿⚽️🤩 pic.twitter.com/5LOhi32YPS— Vinicius Jr (@vini11Oficial) November 4, 2018Mourinho: “Lionel Messi made me a better coach” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho believes the experience of going up against Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi at Real Madrid made him a greater coach.“Vinicius has enamored the fans because he is a natural born winner. He truly hates losing and the fans love that about him,” said Peña to Diario AS.“Watching him play really is a gift, but I still amaze with thinking that he still has so many years ahead of him to improve even further. He is growing little by little as a player.”“We are hoping that he becomes part of the starting eleven very soon, but Vinicius is the first one who knows how difficult this is because the squad has great quality. Isco, Asensio, and Bale are all established players inside the team.”Although it’s also true that in football, everything can change in a matter of seconds. I obviously don’t think he is the team’s leader right now, he still needs to adapt to this new country, the language, and the culture.”It’s very important for Vinicius to go step by step, he is far too young to be the leader of the squad right now. However, nobody will stop ‘Vini’ once they give him enough confidence.”“He is aware that he will have to endure a lot of pressure if he wants to be a big player for Real Madrid, he also knows that he will have to give that extra effort. Right now, he already is delivering excellent performances.”“He isn’t scared of anything and he has a strong mind to go through any type of situation, everything is happening so fast for him.”“Every single player feels pressure, Vinicius feels it as well because he is human. But he does have an advantage with it because he already lived pressure back in Brazil,” he concluded.#UCL 🤩🔝 pic.twitter.com/wjCucdNdAa— Vinicius Jr (@vini11Oficial) November 6, 2018How long do you think it will take Vinicius to become a part of Real Madrid’s starting eleven? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.