African FTA ‘ambitious but achievable’

first_img10 July 2012African countries should not underestimate the task of ensuring that an African Free Trade Area (FTA) gets off the ground, AU Commission director of trade and industry Treasure Maphanga said as the African Union’s 19th summit opened in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Monday.Speaking at the Permanent Representatives Committee meeting ahead of the summit’s opening, Maphanga told reporters that getting African countries to trade among each other was a huge task, one that needed commitment from all parties.The theme for this week’s summit is “boosting intra-African trade”, and the heads of state that will arrive later this week are expected to thrash out ideas that will lead to a more valued continent.“We are moving from the premise that this is ambitious, but it’s feasible,” Maphanga said. “This is a project that belongs to the continent, and we [the AU] are agents and facilitators, and our role at the end of the day is to assist in monitoring it to ensure its success.”At an AU summit earlier this year, African leaders endorsed the plan, expected to be operational by the end of 2017.It envisages a combined gross domestic product (GDP) of US$875-billion from 26 countries. The East African Community (EAC), Common Market for Eastern and Central Africa (COMESA) and Southern African Development Community (SADC) have already begun negotiations to merge, which is a precursor to a single trade area across the continent.According to the AU, the three regional economic blocs constitute 58% of the continent’s GDP and 57 percent of its population.South Africa has thrown its weight behind the plan, with President Jacob Zuma saying it would go a long way towards addressing poverty and underdevelopment.“We expect that we will have the opportunity to consolidate the architecture that was adopted at the last summit, and that architecture was very clear in terms of the continental frameworks and the structure that will support the FTA agenda,” Maphanga said.Africa had realised that without trade and investment and speeding-up economic self-reliance, there would be no progress on integration, she added.Critics of the plan have argued, however, that Africa was wrongly integrated into global trade, citing cheap labour and raw materials. There is also doubt on the level of political commitment among the continent’s leaders to push the plan.But Maphanga insisted that member states would be the key drivers of the project and that “there is no need to think too much about what others are saying”.“We have realised that we need a transformation of the patterns on trade. Without industrialisation and the value addition, we will not make any difference at all in terms of future trade patterns.”The Africa trade committee, which consists of heads of state, would need to keep the FTA project alive with regular progress reports to the assembly, and this should go beyond the current summit.She pointed to the progress that she said had been made by East and Southern Africa, singling out Kenya as enjoying the highest level of intra-African trade.A study has shown that Kenya had, over a five-year period from 2006 to 2010, exported horticultural products valued at Ksh30.5-billion – six times the value of imports (Ksh4.8-billion).The exports increased at an annual rate of 14.3%, from Ksh3.9-billion in 2006 to Ksh6.8-billion in 2010, while imports increased at a rate of 26.2%, from Ksh0.6-billion in 2006 to Ksh1.4-billion in 2010.The main market destinations for Kenya exports by value were Somalia (63%), Uganda (10%), Tanzania (8%) and South Africa (5%).“So we see that there are examples, and this is something that countries can look at,” said Maphanga.Source: SANews.gov.zalast_img read more

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South Africa looks to research, innovation to grow economy

first_img3 February 2015South Africa’s efforts to grow the economy and create jobs through research and innovation topped the agenda at the Innovation Bridge technology showcase and matchmaking event, taking place in Pretoria.A first-of-its-kind, the two-day technology matchmaking event provides an opportunity for local and international technology-based companies, entrepreneurs and financiers to scout for technology solutions and investment opportunities.Speaking on the sidelines of the gathering, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor said the event also gave people from various sectors an opportunity to come together.Increasing the number of researchers, and enhancing research and innovation skills and outputs could contribute positively to improving South Africa’s economy and job creation efforts, she said.“Knowledge is the currency of the global economy. If South Africa wants to continue to compete in the 21st century, we must support research and innovation that will generate growth and jobs now and in the future.”Her department had provided support for the development and commercialisation of research and development (R&D) outputs as well as legislation.The Innovation Bridge would serve as a key platform to close the gap between R&D and the market, contribute to economic competitiveness and stimulate increased investment in R&D through the creation of an enabling environment for technology exploitation and entrepreneurial partnerships, Pandor said.The government was increasingly investing in research and development. The 2011 South African Innovation Survey showed that South African enterprises had a relatively high and novel innovation rate.It recommended that policy makers should take note of these positive trends and ensure that the policy and infrastructure environment actively supported innovation activities in the productive sectors of the economy.A mobile hearing screening solution is just one of the innovations at the Innovation Bridge. The product transforms a smart phone into a calibrated device for early identification of hearing loss, which according to the World Health Organization, affects more than 3 million people in South Africa alone, and 360 million people globally.The 2015 Innovation Bridge is organised by the Department of Science and Technology, with its partners the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA), National Intellectual Property Management Office and Southern African Research and Innovation Management Association. Representatives of various local and foreign organisations are attending.The Department of Science and Technology initiated the Innovation Bridge to provide the first opportunity of its kind for national and international technology-based companies, technology entrepreneurs, investors, financiers and other technology commercialisation partners, to access the latest and best publicly funded technology offerings from South Africa’s universities, science councils and companies supported by the TIA.It ends on 3 February, and includes technology exhibitions and demonstrations, policy dialogues and plenary discussions, training sessions and one-on-one meeting opportunities where visitors and participants can interact directly with researchers and technology developers from research and development organisationsGoing forward, it is foreseen that the Innovation Bridge event will be organised every two years as a prominent feature on South Africa’s calendar of innovation events.Source: SAnews.govlast_img read more

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Google Opens Up Its EPUB Archive: Download 1 Million Books for Free

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#E-Books#NYT#web A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… EPUB: The One eBook Standard to Rule them AllEPUB is a free, standardized format that almost every hardware eReader or desktop software understands. Amazon’s Kindle, however, cannot read EPUB texts without using some intermediary software that converts these books into a format the Kindle can understand. While there are a few competing formats, EPUB has turned into the de facto standard for eBooks. Some vendors, like Sony, wrap a digital rights management (DRM) solution around these books, but others just publish completely open, non-DRMed versions of their books. The EPUB files from Google Books will not be locked down by a DRM solution.It is important to note, however, that these EPUB files were run through an optical character recognition (OCR) system and weren’t edited afterwards. While this software has greatly improved over the last few years, there are still quite a few mistakes in most books. This post on the Google Books blog explains the conversion process in more detail. The PDF versions of these books don’t suffer from this problem, as they are just copies of the actual pages. This also means, however, that these PDF files are far larger and that users can’t, for example, adjust the size of the books’ fonts according to the size of their screens. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts Google just announced that it will now allow users to download over 1 million public domain books in the EPUB format. Google had already made this archive available to some of its partners, including Sony and Barnes and Noble, but until today users weren’t able to download these free EPUB texts from Google directly. Google will continue to make PDF versions of these books available for download as well, but users with eReader’s will find the new EPUB files far more useful.If you don’t have an actual hardware eReader but still want to read these EPUB versions, you can install Stanza or a similar desktop reader to read these books. frederic lardinoislast_img read more

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The Energy Star Audit Wobble

first_imgChasing down and highlighting misleading, incorrect, and occasionally fraudulent product claims is a fun game. So is acknowledging, through unbiased testing, praiseworthy, consumer-friendly products. But for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program, testing and verifying that a product meets the energy efficiency standards claimed by its manufacturer is the only game and the key to the program’s credibility.Last week, as the Government Accountability Office prepared to release a report citing weaknesses in Energy Star’s product-approval system, the New York Times previewed the document by citing a few bogus items, among 20 that had been submitted for Energy Star partnership, that had received Energy Star ratings, including an “air purifier” that in fact was an electric space heater with a feather duster glued to its grille, a gas-powered alarm clock, a geothermal heat pump, a computer monitor, and a refrigerator.Undermining the Energy Star labelThe GAO report would make entertaining reading but for the fact that the Energy Star program is promoted through tax credits and appliance rebates, federal agencies are required to purchase certain Energy Star-certified products, and, perhaps most critically, the program is presented as trustworthy and allows companies use Energy Star certification to market their products.The four phony products noted above were among 20 submitted for Energy Star certification. A total of 15 were approved, 2 were rejected by the program, and certification requests for 3 received no response, according to the GAO report. Four fake companies and individuals offered the products for certification.The upshot is, basically, that Energy Star, which is run jointly by the EPA and the Department of Energy, is a self-certification program. Its approval process also is in large part automated to the point where preliminary screening for bogus products and performance claims is nonexistent. The EPA points out there are after-market tests and self-policing procedures that ensure standards are maintained. An agency official also told the Times that certifications of the fake products didn’t pose a problem for consumers because the products don’t exist. That comment, unfortunately, seemed to draw additional attention to the EPA’s nonexistent pre-certification testing process.Testing … testing … one … two … three …This is hardly the first time Energy Star’s weaknesses have come in for criticism. One of the more recent critiques, titled “Energy Star Program Integrity Can Be Enhanced through Expanded Product Testing,” was published in November by the EPA’s Office of Inspector General and essentially foreshadowed the recommendations of the GAO report.Product testing, performance verification, quality assurance, well defined compliance standards for third-party testing, program oversight – all of the suggestions point to the need for properly developed and applied testing and certification protocols. It is, to be fair, a tall order – about 40,000 products, from more than 2,400 manufacturers, have Energy Star certification – but last week the EPA promised improvements. It obviously will have to act aggressively and no doubt will find plenty of weeding to do. I did, however, find the idea of a gas-powered alarm clock intriguing.last_img read more

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Wawrinka is ready to rumble in Chennai

first_imgStanislas Wawrinka may have slept through the entry deadline for the Aircel Chennai Open starting January 3 and finally got into the draw as a wild card, but the Swiss is all geared up for the first ATP tournament of the year.The runner-up at the last Chennai Open, Wawrinka is now ranked 21th on the ATP computer and hopes to seal the title this time. But he is going to take it one step at a time.”It’s always tough to play the first tournament of the year but at the same time it is great to get back to match play after the off season. Chennai is great preparation for the Australian Open,” Wawrinka told M AIL T ODAY . At a time when people complain about the tennis season being too long, Wawrinka says nothing much can be done about the short break. ” No, it’s ( break) never long enough but that’s the calendar and you have to deal with it and it is the same for all players,” says the man who paired with Roger Federer to win the doubles gold at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.Talking about the off-season, Wawrinka said he likes to be with his family.”It’s just relaxing with my friends and family and baby daughter. I eat a lot of good food and sleep a lot. There is no better way to unwind than spend time at home in my own bed, which I miss throughout the year,” he says.Looking at the year ahead, Wawrinka says he is not going to put pressure on himself. ” I just want to compete more and better myself from the previous year. I will work on certain areas of my game and just get better results than last year. You can’t put too much pressure on yourself,” is his mantra.advertisementAt a time when people complain about the rivalry between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal getting boring, Wawrinka says there can be more variety.” New challengers will always come. Every match is tough and more and more young kids are coming through the challenge for every position. But Roger and Rafael are great for the sport,” says Wawrinka.Wawrinka says he is excited about 2011: “It is very exciting and I am very much looking forward to it. I can’t wait, and hopefully I can do better in Chennai now.” Asked to assess Somdev Devvarman, Wawrinka is frank.”He’s a good player and did well last year. The field is strong every year so each match is tough. And it will be great to see Leander and Mahesh back – so good for India and the tournament. They are dangerous,” is his view.In 2010, Wawrinka had a 36-19 win-loss record as he earned $ 862,678. With Peter Lundgren as his new coach, the year ahead looks exciting for the 25-year-old Swiss.last_img read more

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The hottest sets of wheels and hi-tech gizmos

first_imgSimply Mumbai plays gadget guru this month, bringing you the hottest sets of wheels and hi-tech gizmos in the city. Candid shotsNext time you head off on an exotic vacation, don’t forget to carry along the latest Nikon D4. This 3.2 inch TFT LCD monitor is the latest offering by,Simply Mumbai plays gadget guru this month, bringing you the hottest sets of wheels and hi-tech gizmos in the city.Candid shotsNext time you head off on an exotic vacation, don’t forget to carry along the latest Nikon D4. This 3.2 inch TFT LCD monitor is the latest offering by Nikon and is every photographer’s dream come true. At 16.2 mega pixels, the pictures are clear and precise and thanks to its FX image sensor format you will get stunning pictures even if you shoot in pitch dark surroundings. Since it can shoot 10 frames per second continuously, you certainly won’t miss that special moment. Its in-built high definition video recording with stereo sound helps you capture not only still moments, but also ones in motion. You can attach the ME-1 stereo microphone and record high fidelity audio with minimal camera noise. On-screen audio level indicators and a headphone jack lets you monitor and adjust audio to up to 20 incremental notches.Where: Ria Enterprises (D-SLR Zone), 267, Dr. D. N. Road Kumud House, Ground Floor, Near Citi Bank, Fort.Cost: Rs 3,24,950.Tel: 22626531.Power packedJames Bond rides it to save the world. So why can’t you? Inspired by the extraordinary One-77 supercar, Aston Martin Vanquish is the latest edition brought by the British luxury car maker. Cloaked in a suit of carbon fibre, its muscled body has an aura of intense athleticism and measured aggression. Shaped using advanced computer aided engineering, Vanquish embodies a seamless fusion of assertive style, intriguing details and highly effective aerodynamics.Delivering a scintillating 573PS and 620Nm of torque, Vanquish’s new generation 6.0 litre V12 heart beats faster. Advanced technologies such as variable valve timing and knock sensing provide both additional power and greater fueleffciency.The V12 engine and its newly tuned six-speed automatic gearbox provide effortless, accessible performance with a roaring engine sound to match. From the hand-stitched leather upholstery to the all-new infotainment system and sleek touch sensitive glass switches, the interiors of the Vanquish are enough to get that adrenalin pumping.Where: No 3, Crystal Building, Altamount Road.Cost: Rs 3.85 crore.Tel: 65811007.advertisementRight notesThe legendary Gibson guitars of the 1970s were launched in India last year. Taking design and visual cues from the Les Pauls of the ’80s and ’90s, the Les Paul Traditional variation has a black mahogany body on the back and maple body on the top. This combination reminds you of the legendary Les Pauls responsible for bringing rock back to the forefront in the mid’80s.It has nine strategically placed traditional weight-relief holes for a beefy tone that maintains the resonance of modern Les Pauls, while losing a large portion of the weight. With classic tone woods, and two genuine hum bucking pickups, the Les Paul Traditional is a priceless musical instrument that is sure to get you singing along to some great tunes.Where: Subedar House, Ground Floor, Next to Sujay Hospital, Ahead of Tian Restaurant, Gulmohur Road, Juhu Vile Parle Development Scheme, Juhu.Cost: Rs 1,58,000.Tel: 26211801.Class apartThe Vertu Constellation is one of the world’s most expensive luxury touch screen handsets which has a precious diamond trim and black alligator skin. The Vertu Constellation Touch features a 3.5 inch high contrast display protected by Sapphire Crystals. Each screen of a Vertu phone is processed and polished to produce a crystal clear quality.The Constellation offers personal protection services anywhere in the world through their tie-up with Personal Security Group (PSG) with offices in 10 cities globally.One of the benefits of owning a Vertu is the special concierge button which allows the owner to use the concierge service 24 hours a day to book fine dining and travel services whenever needed. Besides the Touch one, other editions of the series such as Touch Candy and Touch Precious are on offer too.Where: Crossroads 2 Mall, Ethos Unit, Cross Road 2, Jeevan Bima Marg, Nariman Point.Cost: Rs 4.7 to Rs 9 lakhs.Tel: 66550351.Gamer’s choiceThe perfect gift for die-hard gaming fans, it can’t get any better than the PlayStation Vita. Delivering great performance and an excellent graphic platform, the Vita is a revolution in portable entertainment.This next generation device packs in countless innovative features into a stylish and compact form to bring you games-on-thego. The 12.7 cm OLED multi touchscreen has an optimized touch menu interface and dual analog sticks to enhance the gaming experience. There are front and rear cameras that allow you to enjoy what Sony calls ‘Augmented Reality’. The device even comes with music, photo, video and web browsing applications. The Vita is light and convenient to carry. You can download games on the device which are stored on a memory stick that comes in various Gigabyte sizes.As an added feature, it even comes with 3 G and Wifi connectivity. PS Vita is equipped with a storage media slot in addition to the PS Vita card slot, so that users can choose their memory capacity based on their use.Where: Sony Center, Phoenix Mills, Lower Parel.Cost: Rs 1,62,848.Tel: 24940191.advertisementTock of the townThis new version of the quintessential sports timepiece is for the connoisseurs of top range watches. Completely revised from a technical point of view, the DV One Chrono is a chronograph watch with two sub-dials and an automatic movement. It carries the signature of the celebrated Dubois-Depraz atelier. The split level dial has luminous hands and indices, with the Medusa logo at 6 o’clock and date display at 12.The non-scratch black ceramic watch case with matt finish measures 43.5 mm in diameter; it has a tachometric scale on the bezel, also in ceramic, which like the crown and pushers, is decorated with innovative details in IP blue (or grey) plated stainless steel. A rubber watchstrap completes the composition of this stylish timepiece.Where: Unit 7, 1st Floor Galleria, The Trident Hotel Nariman Point.Cost: Rs 1,11,600.Tel: 30277040.Top speedIf you feel the need to own the road, then the Harley Davidson VRSCDX Night Rod Special is the ideal bike to do so. Considered to be the ‘evil twin’ of the popular V-Rod family, the bike is an all black marvel with a contrasting color stripe running across the length of the bike. This bike is the only one to have a 1250cc liquid cooled Revolution engine, co-developed with Porsche, that generates a power of 125hp at 8250 rpm and torque ranging to 111 nm of torque at 7000 rpm.Balanced on a 240mm rear tyre with an extra long wheel base makes the Night Rod extremely stable and the advanced ABS Brembo breaking system fitted in the machine facilitates safe and smooth breaking power. Brace yourself for an addiction of a different kind when you mount this speeding beauty.Where: The Point, Plot No 253, 30th Road, TPS III, Bandra.Cost: Rs 19.8 lakhs.Tel: 61557777.Engineered luxuryWith a 6.75-litre V-12 engine that generates a massive 453 bhp, the Phantom surely tops most people’s wish list. It has a large 8.8-inch display which is great for showing off the improved navigation system with the latest map data from BMW Group. Navigation, voice and audio can be accessed via quick touch buttons located in the command console. A large glossy black knob takes care of navigation within the system. The luxury treatment doesn’t stop here.There is a 12-inch rear theatre configuration coloured in chrome-the displays fold out similar to an airplay tray. Content is controlled via a control panel similar to the front command console.Where: Navnit Motors, 48-Atria Mall, Dr. Annie Besent Road, Worli.Cost: Rs 4 crore.Tel: 24813326.Speed thrillsAmong the fastest rides in the country, the ‘Big Boy’ Hyosung GT250R superbike by DSK has the looks and cosmetics of its GT650R cousin. Its dual disc brakes and two-stage projector headlight are also derivatives from the 650 cc predecessor. Touted among the most expensive in its category, the GT250R is all about the size and power usually associated with sports bikes. The easily available spare parts make it an even more worthwhile investment. Among features that set it apart are its fine suspension and a 41 degree leaning angle position that offers amazing maneuverability. It’s got an overall height of 1130 mm and an overall length of 2090mm. The Big Boy is available in three colours-flaming snow, red raven and silver fox.Where: Ronit Motors, Shop 6, Shilpa Tower, Near Deepak Cinema, Lower Parel (West).Cost: Rs 2,76,000.Tel: 24382929.advertisementPicture perfectCanon India’s cinematography imaging domain launched in July this year. Christened as the Cinema EOS range it consists of the EOS C300, EOS C500 and EOS 1D-C. The EOS C300, featuring cinematic 2K video recording with 50Mbps 4:2:2 XF codec, a compact body and a 35mm equivalent CMOS sensor, will be the first to be available in India.Canon has also announced the launch of its new flagship entry-level DSLR, the EOS 650D. This 18 mega pixel camera stands out for its high-speed sensor-based hybrid AF system and 3 inch touch screen viewfinder which can be used to focus as well as shoot priceless pictures. The speed needed for the camera comes from the DIGIC 5 processor, which is six times faster than its predecessor.Where: Canon Image Lounge, Atria Mall, 3rd floor, Dr. Annie Besant Road, Worli.Cost: Rs 13,90,000.Tel: 24813640.last_img read more

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The NFL Is No League For Old Men

Carolina6 Teams that had the most players age 30 or older who started at least eight games last season Excludes kickers and puntersSource: Pro-Football-Reference.com Could there be a market inefficiency in older players today, similar to the one that Allen exploited nearly 50 years ago? It seems like Jon Gruden is determined to find out. Last year, the Raiders had eight 30-something starters, tied with Arizona for the league high. A total of six — safety Reggie Nelson, tackle Donald Penn, running back Marshawn Lynch, tight ends Jared Cook and Lee Smith, and defensive end Bruce Irvin — remain. And the team has added linebacker Derrick Johnson (36 this year), safety Marcus Gilchrist (30) and wideout Jordy Nelson (33) as projected starters. Plus, the team signed 32-year-old Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie last week to fortify an injury-depleted defensive backfield. Gruden was surprised that he was even available.“Somebody that has a history in this league,” the Raiders coach said to The Fresno Bee. “He’s got a lot of clout, and a lot of people know who he is. We’re hoping we can rejuvenate him and get him acclimated to our defense and potentially utilize his skills he’s proven for a long time.”So it seems like the Raiders are set to put a lot more gray into the Silver and Black. For that, in today’s NFL, they don’t have much competition. Buffalo6 Oakland8 Roster construction appears to be a big factor. Last year, the eight division winners spent an average of 52.1 percent of their total salary cap on their top 10 players.2The Saints spent the lowest share on their best players at 42.4 percent, but that was due largely to one of the most productive rookie classes in history. And players on rookie contracts, which span up to five years when including option years for first-rounders, are huge bargains relative to their level of on-field production. That left only about half the available money for 80 percent of those teams’ rosters. This would mean that a lot of minimum contracts are being used to fill in the gaps — and because minimum salaries increase according to service time, only the elite 30-somethings may be surviving.This isn’t necessarily the wrong strategy. Once they hit 30, average players are either in the midst of or rapidly approaching the downside of their careers. Data shows that players at all positions generally see performance declines by age 30, with players’ peak ages ranging from 24 for running backs to 28 for most offensive linemen and quarterbacks. The subsequent declines are gradual from year to year, but the result is pronounced for all positions. So teams seem to be prioritizing younger players who are hitting their peak or ascending at the expense of veterans.There are certainly high-profile examples of older players still at the top of their game. But even the New England Patriots, who have been witness to the age-defying brilliance of 41-year-old Tom Brady, haven’t stockpiled older players. Brady was joined by only three other Pats players 30 or older who started at least eight games last year: Danny Amendola, Patrick Chung and Devin McCourty. And the Patriots let Amendola leave via free agency to the Dolphins.Teams in the past have bucked this trend, though. The George Allen-coached Washington teams in the 1970s were nicknamed “The Over-The-Hill Gang” after they systematically traded draft picks for veterans. In 1971, the average age of Allen’s starters was 29.4, and the team had 11 starters over the age of 30. But Washington won nine games that season and 11 the following year, in which they regularly started nine 30-somethings en route to the NFC championship. Baltimore7 Arizona8 You could hardly find a group of people less likely to share an ethos with the counterculture movement of the 1960s than NFL decision makers. But increasingly, they don’t seem to trust anyone over the age of 30, either.In 2007, there were 201 players — not including kickers and punters — over 30 who started at least eight games, according to Pro-Football-Reference.com.1Pro-Football-Reference.com gives a player’s age for the season as the age he was on Dec. 31 of that season. That number was down to 133 last season, equating to roughly four per team. That’s a drop of 33.8 percent. Miami6 Cincinnati7 TeamNo. Players Age 30+ read more

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Mens Basketball Ohio State moves up to No 13 in AP Top

Ohio State senior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) drives the lane in the second half of the game against Maryland on Jan. 11 in the Schottenstein Center. Dakich made three of four three point attempts in the first half aiding Ohio State to a 91-69 win. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorOhio State continued to ascend up the Associated Press Top 25 Poll, moving from No. 22 to No. 13 Monday. The Buckeyes have not been ranked this high in the AP poll since Dec. 15, 2014, when they were the No. 12 team in the nation.Ohio State is one of four Big Ten teams ranked, joining No. 3 Purdue, No. 6 Michigan State and No. 25 Michigan.Head coach Chris Holtmann extended his unbeaten streak to start conference play to eight games, leading his team to wins versus Northwestern and Minnesota, the former on the road and the latter at a neutral site. Ohio State’s win against Minnesota was the team’s 17th victory this season, matching the total from all of last season. Overall, the Buckeyes are 17-4.With the 8-0 record in the conference, Holtmann has the longest undefeated start in a Big Ten coach’s first season since Sam Barry began his Iowa coaching career with an 11-0 start in 1923. The record is Wisconsin’s Walter Meanwell, who went 12-0 to begin Big Ten play in 1912.The Buckeyes will hope to begin Holtmann’s tenure 9-0 when they host Nebraska at 8 p.m. Monday at the Schottenstein Center. read more

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Zidane not interested in managing France – FFF president

first_imgThe French Football Federation (FFF) president Noel Le Graet insists that Zinedine Zidane has never demonstrated any interest in coaching France and he is certain that Didier Deschamps will remain with them until at least 2020Zidane stunned the football world in May when he announced that he had left Real Madrid, just five days after leading them to a third successive Champions League crown.Since then, Zidane has been linked with the role of becoming the new head coach of France with Deschamps himself stating that it will likely happen at some point in the future.And the media feel that the move may actually materialise sooner than expected with many fans and pundits alike suggesting that Deschamps failed to extract the true potential of the France squad, despite winning the World Cup this summer.But Le Graet has dismissed any suggestions that they will be parting with Deschamps.Sergio Ramos, Real MadridZidane reveals Sergio Ramos injury concern for Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane has put Sergio Ramos’ availability for Real Madrid’s trip to Sevilla next weekend in doubt after withdrawing him against Levante.“We have contracts until 2020,” Le Graet told BFM TV, via SportsKeeda.“He’s someone who works a lot. Didier and his staff spend hours and hours watching this or that player, the opponents.“Sometimes you need a little luck, but the work done by Didier is considerable. For the first match [of Euro 2020], he will be there.”As for the Zidane speculation, Le Graet had this to say: “There has been no will on his part, manifested by him, to train the national team,”“We have not thought about it. Didier is in place until 2020. Me too, [then] we’ll see.”last_img read more

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