The Café Coffee Day (CCD) location in Mumbai’s upmarket Lokhandwala area is a favorite haunt of 23-year-old television actress Sweety Sangar. She visits this coffee shop, part of India’s leading café chain, at least twice a week with her friends. “I love the ambience and the crowd here,” says Sangar, sinking comfortably into a lounge chair. “I even discuss films (for possible work) with Bollywood directors here.”Just across the road is Barista, another popular coffee outlet. Two 30-year-old friends-cum-entrepreneurs dig into rich chocolate brownies in between working on their laptops. They are waiting to interview a candidate for their start-up. “This is a cool place to grill someone,” says Tejas Mahurkar, one of the pair. In the same neighborhood is Café Mocha, yet another coffee shop. Like CCD and Barista, it too is a favorite with college students and young adults.According to New Delhi-based research and consultancy firm Technopak Advisors, there are over 1,500 coffee cafes in India at present; of these, around 1,000 have opened in the past five years. Valued at around $185 million, the organized café market in India is estimated to be growing at a compound annual rate of 25%.Stirring up the market is India’s growing youth segment: around 50% of India’s 1.2 billion people are 25 or younger. By 2015, this is expected to increase to 55%. For this segment, particularly those with steady, disposable incomes, coffee shops serve as a social hub. “Coffee chains offer a basic emotional need — refuge. They are brands between home and office,” according to Shripad Nadkarni, managing director at Mumbai-based business and marketing consulting firm MarketGate Consulting.“The growth (of cafés) has been triggered by rising youth spending, paucity of alternative hang-outs and an increasing number of new office complexes and colleges,” adds Arvind Singhal, chairman of Technopak. The market, he says, has the potential to touch $800 million to $900 million with a total of 5,000 cafés by 2015. “The sector is wide open,” agrees Gaurav Marya, president of franchise solutions firm Franchise India, which has six café clients.It’s not just local coffee chains that are looking to get a seat at the table. With growth slowing down in developed markets, India is fast becoming a hot spot for coffee retailers across the globe. “Foreign retailers have seen the phenomenal growth of homegrown brands like Café Coffee Day and Barista with increased out-of-home consumption of food. These companies have already established the café concept (in India), and the market is now beginning to look attractive to every coffee maker in the world. They feel they don’t have to start from scratch,” says Ramesh Srinivas, executive director at consulting firm KPMG.Some, like the U.K.’s Costa Coffee and Gloria Jean’s of Australia have already gained a foothold. They set up shop in India a couple of years ago and are now in the process of expanding. Among those waiting to make a splash in the Indian landscape are players like U.S.-based Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts, London’s Coffee Republic, Australia’s Coffee Club and France’s Alto Coffee.Increasing Coffee ConsumptionIndia’s coffee consumption pattern gives a clue to the potential that the market holds. The nation’s per capita consumption of coffee is just 85 grams, compared to 4.5 kilograms in France, 4.6 kilograms in Japan and 6 kilograms in the U.S. The Indian Coffee Board’s numbers reveal that while India is the sixth largest coffee producer in the world, with an annual output of 300,000 tons, domestic consumption is only a third, or 100,000 tons. That’s because like most of Asia, India is predominantly a tea drinking nation. Coffee is a staple only in the southern part of the country.Till the mid-1990s, coffee consumption in India stagnated at 55,000 tons annually. It has doubled since then because of the growing coffee café culture led by domestic brewers CCD and Barista. Over the years, others like the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, The Chocolate Room, Qwiky’s and Café Nescafe joined the party. Hindustan Unilever, the Indian subsidiary of Unilever, is currently pilot-testing Bru World Café in Mumbai with four outlets.Consultants believe that the entry of global heavyweights will change the game further. “The entry of Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts will energize the cafe market,” says Harish Bijoor, a brand consultant and visiting professor at the Indian School of Business in Hyderabad. According to Bijoor, there is bound to be a deeper degree of investment by the existing cafe players, which will help broaden and deepen the base for coffee in India. “Add to it the different formats that will enter. Dunkin’ Donuts worldwide is a pick-and-go play. On-the-go coffee consumption is still nascent territory in India, despite the population being peripatetic within cities. This will add more zing.”MarketGate’s Nadkarni points out that the entry of big global brands like Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts will address consumers who are already exposed to those chains. “That could be a threat to existing players who will have to work harder to retain customers,” he says.Creating New Entry PointsWith 17,000 stores in 55 countries, including 426 in China, Seattle-headquartered Starbucks brewed an agreement with Tata Coffee, India’s largest coffee producer, in January. Starbucks will source and roast green coffee beans from Tata Coffee and will also set up retail outlets in partnership with the Tatas. In an interview with Reuters, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, said the company is “enthused” about entering the Indian market. According to Schultz, Starbucks will look to create different entry points for different demographics and “will create food relevant to Indian consumers that (it does not) provide anywhere else.”Starbucks had in fact begun scenting opportunity in India much earlier, and initially wanted to make a solo entry. But the company’s effort was stalled by FDI regulations — India does not allow 100% foreign ownership in single-brand retail outlets — and was compelled to take the partnership route.For Dunkin’ Donuts, too, it’s been a long journey. In February, following two years of groundwork and negotiations, the company announced a master franchise agreement with north India-based Jubilant FoodWorks, which operates the Domino’s pizza chain in India.”We will raise the bar for existing players,” says Ajay Kaul, Jubilant’s CEO, who will oversee Dunkin’s expansion.Dunkin’ Donuts, which is known globally for pairing coffee with donuts and bagels, is banking on food to grab a bite of the Indian palate. “Unlike others who are pure cafes, the Dunkin’ story is about all-day food, donuts and coffee for premium and middle-class consumers,” notes Kaul. While coffee and other beverages bring in 60% of Dunkin’s revenues in the U.S., in Asia, food accounts for almost 80%, with beverages contributing a mere 20%. “There’s a big opportunity for both coffee and food in India,” Kaul adds. Dunkin’s Westernized menu will gradually expand to include Indian fare. According to Kaul, plans are to look at all formats for the new stores, including 100 to 150 square-foot kiosks. The first Dunkin’ store is expected to open in the first quarter of 2012. The target is to open 30 outlets in three years and increase to 100 in the next five years.Expanding the NetworkMeanwhile at Gloria Jean’s, regional general manager Tony White is also gearing up for a marathon. Gloria Jean’s currently has 16 outlets in Mumbai and Delhi. White is looking to increase that number to 25 by year’s end across other metros, and then jump eightfold to 200 by 2014. “Once we establish beachheads, we will go to smaller towns,” he says.White is also tweaking the company’s sourcing strategy for the Indian market. For the first time, Gloria Jean’s is sourcing and roasting coffee beans outside of Sydney; in this case, in India itself. That’s because coffee attracts a 112% import duty in India and in a price sensitive market like this, passing on the extra costs to the consumers would be suicidal for any player. “It just didn’t make sense importing them,” White notes. “We want to be at the upper end of the mainstream market and have to be cost effective.”At Costa Coffee, the target is to take the 73-store tally to 300 by 2014. Australia’s The Chocolate Room (TCR), which set up shop in 2007 with two Indian techies as master franchisees, is aiming to go up from the current 40 outlets to 50 next year, including standalone shops and kiosks in malls. “We will spend a lot on marketing and visibility,” says L. Chaitanya Kumar, managing director of TCR India.But Venu Madhav, chief operating officer of market leader CCD, is not unduly worried about competition. He believes that there is scope for another 4,000 to 5,000 new outlets over the next five years. “The category is still small. There’s room for everyone,” he says. Madhav expects the market to grow by 40% in the coming years. “New (consumers) are entering the segment and there’s a relatively (higher) degree of comfort in visiting cafes today.”The market leader by a huge stretch, CCD currently has 1,132 outlets in India and 15 overseas. Madhav is now looking at opening another 250 outlets this year and 1,000 in the next three years. He is also experimenting across different formats — the regular neighborhood CCD stores; Coffee Day Squares that offer coffee from around the world for discerning consumers and the spacious Coffee Day Lounges. Madhav has also revamped the menu at the CCD outlets. While outlets along National Highways serve Indian staples like idlis (rice cakes), dosas (rice crepes), paranthas (stuffed flat bread) and biryani (vegetable rice) to travelers, CCD Lounge customers can cook up their own treats with a do-it-yourself menu. “Earlier, the functional need of consumers was coffee and conversation. Now, the consumer is spoilt for choice,” he says. To ensure that footfalls remain high, Madhav has recently signed up consulting firm Landor Associates to engineer a rebranding exercise for CCD.At Barista, India’s second largest coffee chain, which since 2007 had been part of Italy’s Lavazza Group, a key part of the growth strategy is to target customers on the move. Barista plans to increase its number of outlets from 230 at present to 500 by 2014. A majority of the new locations will be located on the highways. Interestingly, both Barista and CCD have signed deals with leading oil companies — Indian Oil, Hindustan Petroleum and Bharat Petroleum — for setting up cafes in gas stations across India.Other domestic players are also gearing up. Like CCD and Barista, the cafe chains are getting into newer territories, like highways, and captive locations such as hospitals and college campuses; experimenting with scalable new formats including kiosks and coffee carts; firming up on supply chains; refining and expanding menus, and also upping the overall experience quotient.India’s coffee café story has its outliers, however, like Java Green from the Reliance Group. Java Green began life as a cyber café in 2003 to support the Reliance group’s telecom business and is now part of Anil Ambani’s empire. The strategy at Java Green is to open stores in locales like colleges and office campuses that have a captive audience. In exchange for free space and electricity, the institutions demand a 10% to 20% discount on all of Java Green’s offerings. The idea is to generate volumes for Java Green and also bring in subscribers for Reliance Telecom. But experts point out that this agenda has made Java Green a fringe player in the café sweepstakes. “The store has a good brand name and beverage range, but needs an aggressive owner. It’s a miniscule business for Ambani,” according to Chennai based G. Giridharan, who was closely associated with the brand during its initial days.Roadblocks AheadEven as the market gets more competitive, there are strong roadblocks ahead. Take the price of roasted coffee. It is currently at an all-time high of $7 to $8 per kilogram, up 60% since last year. Then there is the huge real estate cost. For most foreign players, the rent-to-sales ratio in India is one of the highest across their global markets. With all players targeting a similar profile of consumers, zeroing in on the right location is crucial. Gloria Jean’s White points out that the mix of high rent costs and low menu prices puts tremendous pressure on the business.Manpower is yet another challenge. Much of the success of a café depends not just on the quality of the products it serves, but on the overall ambience and guest experience. This requires trained staff. But vending coffee is not a highly skilled job and is low paying, which often results in high turnover. With every player on expansion track, there is a scramble for putting together the best team. Some brands like CCD and Gloria Jean’s have set up their own training schools, but for others it’s a tough task.With more players entering the arena, the challenges around managing costs, even as one strives to deliver the best international standard of cafe experience, will only intensify. Indian consumers, however affluent, have always put a premium on value-for-money offerings and, as White notes, in order to be successful, every player will need to strictly adhere to the “trifecta of product quality, value-for-money pricing and customer engagement. It will be difficult to scale a large business without the calibration of all three components,” he says. Adds Franchise India’s Marya: “It’s time for everyone to tie up the loose ends and take consumers to the next level.” Related Items
Three men in their twenties were found guilty for the ruthless assault and murder of an elderly Indian-origin jeweler who went missing in Leicester on Jan. 24, 2018.Ramniklal Jogiya, 74, was abducted when he was on his back from his shop at Belgrave Road, and was later found dead in a lane nearby. After a five-week trial, the Birmingham Crown Court found Thomas Jervis, 24, and Charles Frances Mcauley, 20, guilty of murder on Aug.8. The third convict, 20-year-old Callan Reeve, was found guilty of manslaughter. They will be sentenced on Sept. 10. The three had earlier admitted to abduction and robbery. A fourth defendant, Javon Roach, 30, was acquitted of all charges. The court heard that the accused bundled Jogiya in a van, threw his mobile phone away, before torturing and beating him in an attempt to get the security codes for the alarm system and safe at his shop. The men wanted to steal the £200,000 of gold jewelry that the safe contained, the court was told, according to the BBC. Jurors were told that the victim suffered multiple serious injuries to his hands and fingers, one of his biceps was ripped away from the bone, and six of his ribs on the left side were broken, the Sun reported. He also suffered 21 distinctive circular injuries to the torso and shoulder area, suggesting that something was used to inflict repeated pain on him, the report added.The incident had been planned by the convicts for weeks, the court was informed. “Rarely have I investigated a crime so wicked and ruthless. The depravity, inhumanity and utter contempt they showed for their victim has caused untold anguish for his family and stunned the whole community,” Chief Inspector David Swift-Rollinson from Leicestershire Police said. “The only possible comfort left for the family is that the people responsible for this terrible crime will now be locked up for a very long time.”The investigation, which was initiated as a search for a missing person, was turned into a murder investigation within 12 hours. The police examined several CCTV footages that showed Jogiya locking up the shop and beginning his walk back, while other images showed three men jumping out of a white transit van parked on Brandon Street and bundling the shopkeeper into the vehicle. Another footage showed that about 50 minutes later, a man dressed in a burka and pulling a shopping trolley entered Jogiya’s shop. This person was seen deactivating the shop alarm, going to the back of the shop where the safe was kept, and emerging a little while later, seemingly empty-handed.Realizing that the safe could not be accessed due to a 12-hour clock, the attackers drove away from the crime scene and dumped the injured man in a countryside, knowing he would not be able to get help there. “Although he was still alive at this point, the injuries he had suffered were so severe that he could not be saved,” David Swift-Rollinson said. Related ItemsLeicesterUnited Kingdom
A 54-year old man has been charged with hate crime for assaulting an Indian-origin woman traveling in a subway and using homophobic slurs against her.According to reports, Allasheed Allah was arraigned on Dec. 13 and charged with assault as a hate crime and aggravated harassment against Avneet Kaur, 20, for the attack in New York City’s Queens borough last month, PTI reported.If convicted, Allasheed faces three and one-half to 15 years in prison, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.“Queens County is the most diverse county in the nation. It is home to many races, nationalities and sexual orientations. Crimes motivated by bias particularly those involving violence will never be tolerated in this county. When they do regrettably occur, they will be vigorously prosecuted and those involved will be severely punished,” Brown said while sentencing Allasheed.According to the charges, Kaur was traveling in a subway train in Manhattan last month when Allah engaged her in a verbal dispute, PTI reported.During the dispute, he began making homophobic slurs against Kaur and her friend. When the two women began to walk away, the defendant followed them and struck Kaur in the back of her head and then once in her chest causing her to fall and strike her head and neck on a pole before hitting the floor, PTI wrote.According to the charges, Allasheed admitted that he used homophobic language against Kaur and threatened her if she kissed her friend, traveling with her on the subway, again, PTI wrote.Kaur was immediately transported to a local Queens hospital where she underwent treatment for a fractured spine. Related Items
With two sensational political conventions over, the campaign has begun in earnest. Despite the call for a new politics and the rhetoric of change from both sides, this is going to be the usual campaign. There will be insinuations and allegations and negative ads and attacks. What is different this time, though, is that this will be a historic campaign, because the racists and the sexists will be put to test. And they know it.We will either have a Black/mixed race man in the White House or a White woman in the Number One Observatory Circle, the Vice President’s Residence. Americans ought to be proud of this. And the voters even more!We just finished a primary in which a woman ran for the highest office and she did it for the most part, by downplaying her gender identity. She wanted to rise above it, bringing it up when absolutely necessary. Now we have a woman candidate for the Vice Presidency who is feminine in the classical sense of popular culture, calls herself a lipstick wearing pit bull and is not ashamed to cook one meal a day or have kids after the age of 40.It seems like we defeated Hillary Clinton and now we have a chance to embrace Sarah Palin. Either way, someone is trying to test us.We now have Republicans praising every quality of their woman as a virtue and attacking Barack Obama for not choosing a woman as his running mate. Suddenly, they have become champions of women! Would they know if irony hit them in the face!And Democrats find themselves in an equally strange position. They have to now attack what could be virtues in a woman; balancing family life and career, independence of mind and faith, reconciling the lipstick attractiveness with strong ambition and power. Instead, they are attacking beehive hairdos and the gun totting attractiveness of a woman.September 7, 2008 Related Items
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who was made in-charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, did her job but the party and its workers could not rise to the occasion, the party’s State unit chief Raj Babbar said on Monday.Disappointed with the results that gave the Congress just one seat out of 80 in the State and a nationwide tally of 52, Mr. Babbar said the poor showing at the hustings had pained party president Rahul Gandhi.Mr. Gandhi lost from his family bastion Amethi, which voted in BJP’s Smriti Irani to the Lok Sabha this time, but won from Wayanad in Kerala. “He never viewed it (Amethi) as his constituency. Now, family members have given such a verdict,” the U.P. Congress chief said, expressing concern that a person who considered Amethi as his family and gave an identity to the place was not allowed to emerge victorious in the polls.On why Ms. Vadra did not have the desired impact, the actor-turned-politician said party workers and local leaders failed to rise to the occasion.“She did her job. But party workers, local leaders, candidates and the organisation could not accumulate the (electoral) benefits from it. Rahul ji worked so hard and Priyanka ji worked with such a high degree of enthusiasm,” Mr. Babbar said in his first interview after the election results. “We [party workers, local leaders and candidates] were unable to prove ourselves and rise to the occasion.”Asked about the future course of action, the 66-year-old Congress leader said Uttar Pradesh cannot be analysed in a single line.“You have to take steps after a lot of deliberations and strengthen the organisation,” he said.The lone victory for the party came from Rae Bareli, where UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi retained her seat. The BJP won 62 seats in the State, the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party combine 15 and the Apna Dal two.‘Must accept defeat’Refusing to give any one particular factor behind the party’s poll drubbing, Mr. Babbar said, “First, we must accept our defeat and acknowledge the victory of the winner. Having said so, I cannot sit alone and deliberate upon the possible reasons for the defeat. Everyone has to sit together.”Mr. Babbar himself lost the election from the Fatehpur Sikri Lok Sabha seat despite opting for it, after being initially named as party candidate from Moradabad.
Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday reviewed the preparations for cyclone Vayu which is expected to make a landfall in Gujarat and directed officials to ensure all possible steps for safety of people, officials said. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has pre-positioned 26 teams, comprising about 45 personnel each, and the rescuers are equipped with boats, tree-cutters and telecom equipment. The NDRF is also moving another 10 teams as requested by the Gujarat government. After review, the Home minister directed the senior officials to take every possible measure to ensure that people are safely evacuated. He also told them to ensure maintenance of all essential services such as power, telecommunications, health, drinking water and their immediate restoration in the event of damages caused to them, a Home Ministry official said. The Ministry is in continuous touch with the State governments and Union territories including Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Daman and Diu, which may be affected due to the cyclone. The Indian Coast Guard, the Navy, Army and Air Force units have been put on standby and surveillance aircraft and helicopters are carrying out aerial surveillance, the official said.Mr. Shah also gave instruction for round-the-clock functioning of control rooms. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) informed that cyclone ‘Vayu’ is expected to touch Gujarat coast between Porbandar and Mahuva around Veraval and Diu region as a severe cyclonic storm with wind speed of 110-120 kmph gusting to 135 kmph during early morning of June 13, another official said. It is likely to cause heavy rainfall in the coastal districts of Gujarat with storm surge with a height of about 1.0-1.5m above the astronomical tides likely to inundate the low lying coastal areas of Kutch, Devbhoomi Dwarka, Porbandar, Junagarh, Diu, Gir Somnath, Amreli and Bhavnagar districts at the time of landfall. The IMD has been issuing regular bulletins since April 9 to all the States concerned. The meeting was attended by Union Home Secretary, Secretary in the Ministry of Earth Sciences and senior officers of the IMD and the MHA. Cabinet Secretary P.K. Sinha has also convened a meeting of National Crisis Management Committee later in the day to review the preparedness of States and Central agencies, the official said. Chief secretary of Gujarat and advisor to administrator of Diu are scheduled to attend the meeting.
The court held that the classification “complies with the twin test of reasonable classification permissible under Article 14 (equality before the law) of the Constitution of India, namely, intelligible differentia and rational nexus to the object sought to be achieved.”It stated, “We, however, hold that the quantum of reservation set out by the Maharashtra State Reservation for seats for admission in educational institutions in the State and for appointments in the public services and posts under the State for SEBC as 16% is not justifiable and we quash and set aside the quantum of reservation under the said provisions over and above 12% and 13% respectively as recommended by the Commission.”Senior counsel Anil Sakhare appearing for the State told The Hindu, “we will definitely go in appeal to the Supreme Court on the limited point of 12% for education and 13% for jobs and will bring it back to 16%.”Advocate Gunratan Sadavarte, opposing the verdict, also said, “We will appeal in the Supreme Court as the reservation is against the spirit of the Constitution and breaks the 50% mandate of reservation in the State. It is reverse discrimination against general category.” Also Read MSBCC justifies 16% Maratha reservation The Bombay High Court on Thursday upheld reservation for Marathas in the State but quashed the 16% quota by calling it “not justifiable”. The court said it should not exceed 12% for education and 13% for jobs as recommended by the Maharashtra State Backward Class Commission (MSBCC).A Division Bench of Justices Ranjit More and Bharati Dangre said, “We hold and declare that the State possesses the legislative competence to enact the Maharashtra State Reservation for Seats for Admission in Educational Institutions in the State and for appointments in the public services and posts under the State (for Socially and Educationally Backward Classes) SEBC Act, 2018, and the State’s legislative competence is not in any way affected by the Constitution.”Welcoming the verdict, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said in the Assembly, “The court has upheld the extraordinary and exceptional circumstances mentioned in the report to provide quota to Marathas, due to which the reservation quantum in the State has crossed 50%.”Extraordinary situation In the 487-page judgment, the Bench noted, “We hold and declare that the report of the Gaikwad Commission has set out the ‘exceptional circumstances and extra-ordinary situations’ justifying crossing of the limit of 50% reservation as set out in the Indra Sawhney case (Supreme Court).”The court recorded, “The 50% limit of reservation can be crossed subject to availability of quantifiable and contemporaneous data reflecting backwardness, inadequacy of representation and without affecting the efficiency in administration.”The judgment said the classification of the Maratha class into “Socially and Educationally Backward Class” was justified.
The Shahdol Commissioner has raked up grave charges against a serving State Information Commissioner, who during a past tenure had purportedly violated the revenue code to transfer a pond, meant for government ownership, to a private entity for a nominal fee “causing heavy loss” to the Madhya Pradesh government.Although the 12-hectare Mansarovar pond on unoccupied land in Gyaraspur of Vidisha district should have been vested in the government, wrote Shahdol Commissioner R.B. Prajapati to a State-level Principal Secretary, Rajkumar Mathur, the District Collector had parted away the State’s rights in 2005 in an “illegal and unauthorised way”.“Therefore, I request you to initiate the removal from the service of Mr. Mathur, now a State Information Commissioner,” wrote Mr. Prajapati, even though the district falls under the Bhopal division.‘Delay in inquiry’Due to the delay in an inquiry and the pendency of the case with the General Administration Department, he wrote, Mr. Mathur acquired the constitutional post for which he was “ineligible on moral and statutory grounds”.“If according to him,” wrote Mr. Prajapati, “the Mansarovar pond was a private land, it should have been vested in the State Government under Section 251 of the Madhya Pradesh Land Revenue Code, 1959. Instead, he gave it up for exchange.”According to the Section, all tanks situated on unoccupied land in the State on or before the date of coming into force of the Act should vest in the State government. The Act abolishes the rights of intermediaries in the area on a tank, which may be used by villages for irrigation.Moreover, although the pond didn’t fulfil the exchange parameters laid down under the revenue book circular, still it was given up under it in an illegal and unauthorised way, he alleged. “The Section is one of the most important ones enacted in public interest,” he wrote, “It has the same effect as the Madhya Pradesh Ceiling on Agricultural Holding Act, 1960, under which there is a provision to vest private land in the State government by declaring it surplus,” he said.‘In cold storage’Mr. Prajapati claimed he had brought the case to the attention of the GAD and other departments on July 14, 2008, as a consequence of which the Under Secretary to the Government of India (Ministry of Personnel and Training) had directed the State’s Chief Secretary to take action. “However, no serious inquiry was undertaken and the case was thrown into the cold storage,” wrote Mr. Prajapati.
A 25-member team of the Japanese Ground Self-Defence Forces is scheduled to undergo a joint military exercise with Indian Army soldiers at the Counter-Insurgency and Jungle Warfare School in Mizoram’s Vairengte from October 19 to November 2.The aim of the exercise is to share experience gained during various counter-terrorism operations in the respective countries, Defence spokesperson Wing Commander Ratnakar Singh said on Tuesday.The joint exercise is under the Army’s annual Dharma Guardian training programme. The scope of the exercise will cover platoon-level joint training on counter-terrorism operations in jungle and urban scenarios, he said.“Dharma Guardian is a series of military training exercises undertaken by India with various countries. The exercise with Japan is crucial and significant in terms of security challenges faced by both nations in the backdrop of global terrorism,” Wing Commander Singh said.
Ginebra rookie Kevin Ferrer. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netKevin Ferrer is hoping to return to action as soon possible for Ginebra Ginebra.The Ginebra rookie is looking to return on Friday after he missed the Gin Kings’ 121-94 Game 1 rout of TNT in their 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup semifinals series on Monday.ADVERTISEMENT Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games LATEST STORIES View comments LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients Meralco suspends Kelly Nabong BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Read Next Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president The 24-year-old forward suffered a slight fracture on his left cheek after a freak fall in the Gin Kings elimination game against TNT last September 23.The former UST stalwart said he’s just awaiting the green light from the doctors. He has already returned to the team’s practice, but limited to only non-contact drills.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“It’s already normal. There’s no more pain. I’m just resting and waiting for the go signal of our doctors,” he said.Rather than be down, Ferrer is taking advantage of the extended time to heal up as the Kings prepare for the bigger wars ahead. Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City “This is the time where I shouldn’t be down. I have to prepare for the time when I make the comeback and I hope that I’ll be better when I return,” he said.Ferrer has been averaging 5.25 points on a 38-percent shooting from three, to go with 1.25 rebounds in 12.4 minutes of play this conference.Ginebra shoots for a 2-0 series lead against TNT on Wednesday in Batangas.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC
The games are being held about 80 kilometers (50 miles) from the border between North and South Korea, countries that technically have been at war since an armistice in 1953.An International Olympic Committee spokesman said drones that were scheduled to be used in the opening ceremony were not deployed. Spokesman Mark Adams called it an “impromptu logistical change” and did not say whether it was related to the Wi-Fi and internet outage. Global opens AFC Cup bid vs Thanh Hoa Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC MOST READ Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting LATEST STORIES AFP official booed out of forum Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics PLAY LIST 00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City People arrive at the Olympic Stadium ahead of the opening ceremony at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Friday, Feb. 9, 2018. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — Pyeongchang Olympic organizers are investigating a possible attack on their internet and Wi-Fi systems that took place about 45 minutes before the opening ceremony.Organizing committee spokeswoman Nancy Park said the defense ministry and a cybersecurity team were investigating the outage that occurred Friday night.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “It didn’t affect the opening ceremony,” Park said. “It went as planned. We just had some issue with our internal system.”Park said Saturday that the systems had been “normalized” without giving details. She earlier declined to speculate on the cause and said she did not want to call it a cyberattack.In a statement, organizers issued an apology “to all those affected. These have not disrupted any events.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSouth Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported that servers were shut down to prevent damage to technical systems, causing problems with the Pyeongchang Olympic website.The opening ceremony was attended by several heads of state and included North Korea’s ceremonial leader, Kim Yong Nam, and the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Also on hand was U.S. Vice President Mike Pence. Read Next View comments
Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday PLAY LIST 03:12Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday01:43Who are Filipinos rooting for in the NBA Finals?02:25Raptors or Warriors? PBA players take their pick of NBA champ01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City View comments LATEST STORIES Cleveland is the unknown, even with James. The Cavaliers added new pieces around him earlier this month, and there’s not a lot of time left to build championship chemistry.The Cavs went into the break with four straight wins, but they’re still just third in the conference and couldn’t gain any ground on the Raptors, who have won seven straight to pass the Celtics. Toronto is an NBA-best 24-4 at home and could make the Cavs’ NBA Finals plans difficult if they have to go through Canada.“We would hope so, but we’ve got to get there,” Raptors All-Star guard Kyle Lowry said. “We’ve got to finish the season strong.”Much of the work is already done, since the NBA’s earlier start to this season means teams are well beyond the midway point of their schedules. They will have about 25 games remaining, with so much to sort out in both conferences.It’s a two-team race at the top of the West but things are tight well beyond that. San Antonio is just percentage points ahead of Minnesota for third while still hoping Kawhi Leonard returns from his thigh injury, and it’s a gap of only 4 1/2 games from there to 10th place, where the Utah Jazz have won 11 straight.ADVERTISEMENT What he really wants is to be celebrating in the postseason, not midseason.The NBA’s sprint to the finish begins Thursday with James riding high but starting again from back in the pack as Cleveland tries to catch Toronto and Boston in the Eastern Conference.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“We just added four new guys before the break, and we have a lot of work to do,” James said. “So I really don’t like to think that too far ahead. But obviously winning championships is what it’s all about. That’s what this league is all about and hopefully at the end of the road then I have the Cavs there to actually compete for one, to be in a finals representing the East.”The Golden State Warriors are also in the unusual position of pursuers, after red-hot Houston passed them for the league’s best record with 10 straight wins leading into the All-Star break. But nobody would count out the Warriors, not with their star-studded group that has won two of the last three titles. 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Read Next Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH GALLERY: Lady Chiefs win back-to-back titles The East has a close race for fourth place and home-court advantage in the first round between Washington and Indiana, and positioning to be settled down the bottom of the bracket, where Milwaukee, Philadelphia and Miami hold the final three spots.But the biggest question might be the Celtics, who slumped into the break with three straight losses after leading the conference most of the season, and now have one team ahead of them and another behind that has the momentum.“The Raptors have been playing really well. Cleveland has been playing really well. But we’ve got to get back to playing really well, too,” the Celtics’ Jaylen Brown said. “So as the season moves forward, we’re looking forward to getting back to the top spot.”Same with the Warriors, who were hurt by the longer-than-usual time it took to reach the break. They were just 6-4 in their last 10 games and at 44-14 already have more losses than they averaged over the last three seasons (13).Coach Steve Kerr made it clear that his team needed a rest and now that the Warriors had it, they’re ready to try to reel in the Rockets.“We’ve got 20-something games before the playoffs to chase another championship,” All-Star Stephen Curry said. “So, ready to hit the ground running when we get back.” NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH AFP official booed out of forum MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Team LeBron’s LeBron James, second from left, of the Cleveland Cavaliers, shoots as Team Stephen’s Draymond Green, left, of the Golden State Warriors, Klay Thompson, second from right, of the Golden State Warriors, and Stephen Curry, of the Golden State Warriors, defend during the first half of an NBA All-Star basketball game, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)LeBron James had a trophy in his hands and a smile on his face.That was Sunday at the All-Star Game, when James again rose above the NBA’s best in winning a game and MVP honors.ADVERTISEMENT Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises
NBA reviewing sexual assault allegations against Mark Cuban Google honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa “I’ll feel probably more nervous on the first tee tomorrow than I do on the first tee normally, just given the setting,” Spieth said.The setting is Woods returning to golf, and while it is nothing new at this point, it is no less the attraction. He has never played the Valspar Championship, and the last time he was at Innisbrook before this week was in 1996 for a mixed-team event during the silly season that no longer exists.Woods was nine tournaments (and two victories) into his pro career at that point.In some respects, he is starting over. This is his fourth PGA Tour event since returning from a fourth back surgery, and it was only six months ago that Woods wasn’t even certain he would be able to play again at a high level.He is making progress. He finished seven shots behind at Torrey Pines (a tie for 23rd) and eight shots behind at the Honda Classic (12th). In between, he missed the cut at Riviera, which is one reason he is at Innisbrook for the first time.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university PLAY LIST 01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus Spieth was a 20-year-old in the 2013 Presidents Cup, playing with Steve Stricker against Woods and Matt Kuchar in a modified alternate shot. They were taken by cart to start on the par-5 seventh hole.“I stood on that tee,” Spieth said Wednesday. “We were trying to get off quickly in front of the groups, and I remember being unbelievably nervous on that shot, and for most of the shots I hit in the round — even though it’s a practice round, and he was my teammate. They went eagle-birdie-birdie or something like that to start. I thought, ‘Man, this must be what it’s been like for the last 20 years for guys.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSpieth made a hole-in-one that day on the 12th hole. He has played with Woods seven times since, including the third round of the British Open at Hoylake, and Woods has never had the lower score in those occasions.They play again Thursday in the opening round of the Valspar Championship. LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexico Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH “Even if it’s not 2000 Tiger, it’s still Tiger on a Sunday,” he said. “And that’s something that would be an experience we haven’t had before.” “I only got two rounds in LA. I missed the cut there,” Woods said. “I felt really strong afterward. After playing Honda and really feeling good about it, I wanted to push myself in my practice sessions, which I did; push myself in the gym a little bit. And I can handle two weeks in a row.”He also will play next week at Bay Hill, meaning four tournaments in five weeks as he prepares for the Masters.There is a tendency to judge Woods’ progress by each shot, each round, each week. He is a little more patient, and that much was true when he checked on his statistics for the year. Woods said he couldn’t find any because he hasn’t played enough to be listed.“I’ve only played 10 rounds,” he said. “I know people are saying that I’ve been erratic, little inconsistent. But 10 rounds, it’s not that many. … That’s basically how my comeback has been so far this year. I haven’t played a lot.”The sleepy tournament in the Florida swing suddenly has some serious star power. The field includes Rory McIlroy for the first time, along with Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose, Adam Scott and Masters champion Sergio Garcia. Stenson will join Woods and Spieth for the opening two rounds.Spieth isn’t one to get intimidated. One exception was playing with former President George W. Bush, but that tee shot and subsequent round of golf was easy.“Anybody else outside of golf, you’re still doing what you know you’re better at than them,” he said. “When you’re on the tee with someone like Tiger who you have grown up watching him dominate the sport … it’s something that you just kind of get used to, I guess. Am I totally used to it? No.”The last time they played was at the Phoenix Open in 2015, when Woods was a mess with his short game. Spieth shot 68 in the second round to get into weekend condition. Woods shot 82 and missed the cut.But this is a different Tiger.“I haven’t seen a whole lot of him the last few years since he’s been hurt and trying to come back,” Spieth said. “But we all hope for that Sunday afternoon pairing alongside all us young guys. We want that chance to be able to battle it out with him on Sunday. I know he wants that, too, to show us what he’s done to other people. Tiger Woods tees off on the 10th hole at Innisbrook’s Copperhead course during the pro-am at the Valspar Championship golf tournament, Wednesday, March 7, 2018, in Palm Harbor, Fla (Jim Damaske/Tampa Bay Times via AP)PALM HARBOR, Fla. — Jordan Spieth is among the young stars in golf with only a glimpse — if even that — of how Tiger Woods could take over a tournament with his game and appeal.That moment for Spieth came in a practice round at Muirfield Village, with Woods as his teammate.ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Read Next MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Typhoon ‘Tisoy’ threatens Games View comments
LATEST STORIES 1 dead in Cavite blast, fire Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken World’s 50 Best Restaurants launches new drinking and dining guide WATCH: Firefighters rescue baby seal found in parking garage Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Former Ateneo stalwart Amy Ahomiro gets to play in the coming Premier Volleyball League Open Conference after all.This after the PVL amended its rule about permanent residents, allowing the Perlas spiker to see action in the Open which kicks off this Saturday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.ADVERTISEMENT Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Smith or Myers? TNT has until noon to decide What ‘missteps’? MOST READ The development is welcome news for Perlas which lost Dzi Gervacio, who will study in the US for two months.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Cayetano to unmask people behind ‘smear campaign’ vs him, SEA Games According to a statement by PVL president Ricky Palou, the organizing Sports Vision will now allow players with Alien Certificate of Residence to play provided they have been residing in the Philippines for at least 10 years.Ahomiro, born in New Zealand, has been in the country for more than 10 years. She finished high school at Brent before playing for the Lady Eagles.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“We will allow foreign nationals who are residents of the Philippines and holders of ACRs to play,” the statement read. “However, we have restrictions.”The league has also barred Thai Pacharee Sangmuang, who has been living in the country for three years, to play. View comments
Westbrook, Biles win athlete of year honors at The ESPYS China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong El Nido residents told to vacate beach homes LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera While the last two flat stages since Monday’s rest day were relatively simple and tranquil for the overall contenders, some still managed to get themselves in bother.‘Nervy’Romain Bardet, third overall at 51sec, came off his bike twice, as did two-time former winner Alberto Contador.“I’m ok, I’m happy to have finished with that stage, it was nervy,” said Bardet.“I was caught up in crashes twice so I’m happy to have come out unscathed and to have finished with these flat stages.“It’s never nice to crash twice — these are the type of days on the Tour where you have to know how to accept your pain with patience, kowtow a bit and wait for better days.”Contador might have been thinking about attacking in the Pyrenees but his two crashes, added to two more last Sunday, have left him looking just to survive until the Alps.“This complicates things a lot for me in the Pyrenees but there’s no way I’m letting my head go down,” insisted the 34-year-old, who is already five minutes down and 12th overall.“When things go against you, instead of thinking of other things or other objectives, you need to be stronger, more determined, and that’s what I’m going to do.“This certainly doesn’t help. I’ll have to wait for the Alps (to attack).” “I have mixed feelings. On that day there was frustration for not being able to go for the stage win, but at the same time I had great feelings and great legs.“I would be very happy if they felt the same tomorrow.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsThe 17th stage in 2012 was won by Spaniard Alejandro Valverde by just 19 seconds as he held off the charging Froome and Wiggins.But several times Froome had been able to accelerate away from his team leader, only to be called back to wait for Wiggins, the yellow jersey holder at that time. LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “I’ve no regrets, that’s not who I am. I will continue to look forward and in the moment I made the right decisions,” said Froome.Thursday’s 214.5km stage will be crucial to the overall standings, according to Froome, and he’s expecting his rivals to try something audacious.“It’s interesting, it’s going to be certainly one of the stages that shapes this year’s Tour de France being one of the only uphill finishes left now — there are two of them,” said the Sky team leader.“From our point of view, we don’t want to see guys who’ve lost time already getting back into the game, so we aren’t going to let any GC contenders get up the road to get that time back.“But my focus is on Fabio Aru who’s only 18 seconds behind.”ADVERTISEMENT Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR MOST READ Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Britain’s Chris Froome puts on the overall leader’s yellow jersey on the podium after the eleventh stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 203.5 kilometers (126.5 miles) with start in Eymet and finish in Pau, France, Wednesday, July 12, 2017. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)Chris Froome will return to the scene of one of his most frustrating moments at the Tour de France on Thursday.But the three-time champion said after Wednesday’s 11th stage he has no regrets about the day he was denied the chance of going for a stage victory in Peyragudes as he had to wait for team leader and eventual champion Bradley Wiggins.ADVERTISEMENT Colombian Nairo Quintana vowed to attack if he has the strength, although he’s been complaining of a lack of that the last few days.He cracked on the final climb last Sunday and has drifted out to eighth overall at 2min 13sec from Froome. But he too is staying positive.“We’re not far and we’ve not lost hope. We’ll see how tomorrow goes and how the legs are.“For the moment they feel good and we hope they’ll get better still.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend View comments
Gilas Pilipinas will be without naturalized center Andray Blatche for the 2017 Fiba Asia Cup in Beirut, Lebanon this August.ADVERTISEMENT Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games READ: Filipinos fail to finish Gilas stint on a high note despite win over IranRounding up the roster are Raymond Almazan and Fil-German big man ChristianStandhardinger, who took Blatche’s place.In an earlier report from the Inquirer, Blatche was reluctant in joining the team because of the peace and order situation in Beirut, Lebanon.Gilas Pilipinas is set to compete in the continental championships, with Australia and New Zealand participating for the first time, from August 8 to 20.ADVERTISEMENT Trump strips away truth with hunky topless photo tweet Embattled Olympic boxing body picks Russia for 2019 worlds FEU Auditorium’s 70th year celebrated with FEU Theater Guild’s ‘The Dreamweavers’ View comments Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ National Coffee Research Development and Extension Center brews the 2nd National Coffee Education Congress Coach Chot Reyes bared his 12-man roster Tuesday night with just two weeks left before the Philippines shoots for the Asian title after years of finishing with the silver medal.READ: Sources: Blatche reluctant to join Gilas in Lebanon Fiba Asia FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsVeterans June Mar Fajardo, Jayson Castro, Terrence Romeo, Calvin Abueva, and Japeth Aguilar banner the team together with returning defender Gabe Norwood.Rookies Jio Jalalon, Matthew Wright, and Roger Pogoy were also retained in the roster along with cadet Carl Bryan Cruz. Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo El Nido residents told to vacate beach homes MOST READ LATEST STORIES Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Church, environmentalists ask DENR to revoke ECC of Quezon province coal plant Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information.
Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “We’re going to blow past our own record of $72 million; this fight is massive,” Ellerbe said.Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao’s “fight of the century” saw live gate receipts produce more than $71 million in revenue at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, easily surpassing the previous live gate record of $20 million, for Mayweather-Canelo Álvarez.Mayweather reiterated Ellerbe’s thoughts.“We’re doing crazy numbers, forget what you all (are) hearing. We’re doing crazy numbers,” Mayweather said. “Our fight is doing unbelievable numbers. The pay-per-view numbers are going to be unbelievable and we will have a sold-out crowd. I’m not worried about that.”ADVERTISEMENT That was until he was questioned about slow ticket sales for the upcoming fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Conor McGregor on Aug. 26 at T-Mobile Arena.“I’m actually tired of hearing that question,” Ellerbe said, as the smile disappeared. “Right now, we have over 60 million dollars in the box office. What part of that remotely looks like ticket sales are slow? This isn’t a damn Rolling Stones concert. That’s the only thing that sells out in seconds. We’re talking about tickets that go from $500 to $10,000. That’s an expensive ticket.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsAs of Thursday evening, a general search for two tickets on Ticketmaster’s website showed 536 pairs available, ranging anywhere between $1,682.50 to $35,010.09 per ticket.And with thousands of seats still available, and the fight two weeks out, some believe the next sporting event that will sell out in that venue will be a Vegas Golden Knights game, when the newest NHL expansion team opens the 2017-18 season. Critics also believe with some second-tier seats carrying a five-figure price tag, the pay-per-view fee of $99.95 seems like a bargain. Floyd Mayweather Jr. trains at his gym Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017, in Las Vegas. Mayweather is scheduled to fight Conor McGregor later in the month. (AP Photo/John Locher)LAS VEGAS — Sixty-million dollars sounds pretty good to Leonard Ellerbe.Dressed dapper in a white shirt and slacks, topped with a navy pinstriped blazer, the CEO of Mayweather Promotions flashed an occasional smile while addressing the media Thursday at Mayweather Boxing Club.ADVERTISEMENT SEA Games: Don’t boo Schooling, Malaysians urged DILG, PNP back suspension of classes during SEA Games Manny Pacquiao on Floyd Mayweather: Let him enjoy retirement PLAY LIST 00:44Manny Pacquiao on Floyd Mayweather: Let him enjoy retirement05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH01:49Pacquiao to Mayweather: Want fans to stop asking for rematch? Then fight me again02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side NGCP on security risk: Chinese just technical advisers MOST READ Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters LATEST STORIES Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments
Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James speaks while holding his daughter, Zhuri, during the We Are Family Reunion at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017. (Erin McLaughlin/The Sandusky Register via AP)SANDUSKY, Ohio — Along with getting good grades and listening to their parents, LeBron James has encouraged kids in his foundation’s educational program to stand up for their beliefs.On Tuesday night, the superstar gave a lesson in how it’s done.ADVERTISEMENT Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side Concluding a day of fun and games at an amusement park, James turned serious when speaking about the recent violence and tragedy in Charlottesville. James also took a pointed swipe at President Donald Trump, calling him the “so-called president.”While holding his young daughter, Zhuri, James stood on stage before an excited crowd of students, parents and others connected to the LeBron James Family Foundation and delivered his emotional message.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games opening“I know there’s a lot of tragic things happening in Charlottesville,” James said to cap the annual event at Cedar Point amusement park. “I have this platform and I’m somebody that has a voice of command, and the only way for us to get better as a society and for us to get better as people is love. And that’s the only way we’re going to be able to conquer something as one.”Then, James, who endorsed Hillary Clinton last year and introduced her at a rally in Cleveland just two days before the election, went at Trump, whom he has criticized in the past. Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Valdez, PH volleyball take lessons from losses in AVC Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo MOST READ Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ LATEST STORIES NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Now in its sixth year, James’ foundation has brought hope to children who might not have any otherwise. If the students meet certain criteria, stay in the program and graduate, they can receive full tuition to the University of Akron.“That means everything,” Latasha McCullough said as she sat with her husband, Arthur, and children Arlissa and Arsea while waiting for James to appear on stage.The McCulloughs have been directly impacted by James and his work, and they’re forever grateful.“He doesn’t have to do anything,” Latasha said. “All he is responsible for are his kids, his family, go to work and provide for his, but he does it for his city. He does it for everybody, everybody’s kids. All the things he didn’t have growing up, he’s giving it to our kids with no problem and he’s not being selfish. It’s constant and consistent, you earn what you get.”James has grown his foundation beyond its initial goals of tackling the city’s drop-out rate. Next year, the charity will open the I Promise School, designed to help students who have already fallen behind and need extra attention.Michelle Campbell, executive director of the LeBron James Family Foundation, is awed by what the group has accomplished.James has led the way.“It’s never enough with him,” she said. “He is always pushing, just like on the basketball court, pushing and pushing. I could have never imagined what we have done and are doing, but with his belief and what he wants to do and his drive and his ability to put all these partners around us. We can’t fail.“It started out with working with kids and changing a child, then OK, we got the family involved and we learned that some didn’t have their high school diplomas, so we broke down those barriers. Now he’s changing a whole community. He’s uplifting this whole community, on his back.” Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “It’s not about the guy that’s the so-called president of the United States, or whatever the case. It’s not about a teacher that you don’t feel like cares about what’s going on with you every day. It’s not about people that you just don’t feel like want to give the best energy and effort to you. It’s about us. It’s about us looking in the mirror. Kids all the way up to the adults. All of us looking in the mirror and saying, ‘What can we do better to help change?’ And if we can all do that and give 110 percent, then that’s all you can ask for.“So, shout-out to the innocent people in Charlottesville and shout-out to everybody across the world that just want to be great and just want to love. Thank you, and I love you all.”James’ remarks ended a star-studded show that included pop stars Jordin Sparks and Usher as well as his Cavaliers’ teammate J.R. Smith. They stood alongside him for his message along with his sons, Bronny and Bryce.There had been a celebratory vibe all day, as James hosted nearly 7,000 of his foundation’s students and their families, who strolled around the immense park best known for its roller-coasters wearing light blue T-shirts with “We Are Family” across the fronts.It was as if James’ hometown of Akron had all gone out together for the day, and that was exactly the point of the event — to celebrate the successes of kids committed to making more of their lives.ADVERTISEMENT View comments
Can the BCCI and Lalit Modi reach a compromise on the issue of the disciplinary committee set up to probe allegations against the former IPL commissioner? At least the Supreme Court has given the two parties time till Wednesday to try and reach a deal.Modi’s lawyer Ram Jethmalani told the Supreme Court on Thursday that a compromise was possible on the issue and was being attempted.This comes even as the BCCI has outrightly rejected Modi’s demand that the disciplinary committee be reconstituted. Modi’s plea has been that the committee is biased against him.Mehmood Abdi, one of Modi’s lawyers, said: “The proposal was floated mutually by the counsels of the two sides. I hope good sense prevails upon the BCCI and they agree to it.””We want an independent panel to look into the charges against Modi,” Abdi told Headlines Today. But even as a compromise was being attempted, Abdi has hit out at BCCI secretary N. Srinivasan over a police complaint filed against the former IPL commissioner.”The government machinery in Chennai is being used against Modi, which is why the case was filed in Chennai and not Mumbai,” Abdi said.
Former hockey captain and Olympian Dhanraj Pillay on Wednesday joined the increasing chorus of voices demanding that batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar be given the ‘Bharat Ratna’ by the Indian government. “Sachin certainly deserves to be conferred the Bharat Ratna for the way he has been playing for the last 22 years. He was the mastermind of our World Cup victory,” said Pillay, who has represented India in four Olympics and hockey World Cups. Pillay, who spoke on the sidelines of the function to release veteran photographer Mohan Bane’s pictorial book on the Beijing Olympics with English captions, The Gold Wall of India, also believed that Tendulkar should play in the next World Cup in 2015. “He’s as fit as a 19 or 20 year old and he should play in the next World Cup too,” said Pillay about Tendulkar who would be turning 38 on April 24. Union Energy Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde also said Tendulkar deserved to be honoured with the Bharat Ratna. “Just like Donald Bradman, Tendulkar has brought happiness to the cricket fans of the world with his batsmanship. He deserves to be conferred with the Bharat Ratna,” said Shinde who was among the dignitaries present at the book release event. With inputs from PTI