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September | 2017 | informazing

Insightful News


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Monthly Archive:: September 2017

Lester looks sharp as Cubs pound Reds 9-0


CHICAGO (AP) — Jon Lester struck out seven over five innings, Kyle Schwarber hit his 30th home run and the Chicago Cubs pounded the Cincinnati Reds 9-0 on Saturday for their 15th win in 18 games.

Lester (13-8) allowed four hits and walked none in a possible tuneup for Game 1 of the NL Division Series against Washington. The veteran left-hander has allowed one run in 11 innings over his past two outings after posting an 8.22 ERA in his previous five starts.

Lester’s second straight win was a welcome development for the Cubs with Jake Arrieta coming back from a strained right hamstring. Kyle Hendricks also could start the playoff opener against the Nationals next Friday.

The defending World Series champions continue to roll along with the playoffs approaching and their sights set on another big run. They had their top players back in the lineup after resting most of them the previous two games with their second straight NL Central title locked up.

Schwarber finished with four RBIs. He hit a two-run drive in the second and a two-run single in the third against rookie Jackson Stephens.

Rene Rivera came off the bench to hit a two-run single in the sixth and a solo homer in the seventh.

Stephens (2-1) gave up four runs and four hits, and the last-place Reds lost for the 10th time in 11 games.

Willson Contreras singled leading off the second and Schwarber drove the next pitch about halfway up the center-field bleachers, with a fan reaching out to make a neat catch. The home run was the sixth in 15 games for the slugger, who was sent to the minors after struggling early in the season.

Chicago had the bases loaded in the third when Schwarber shattered his bat on a bloop single to center. That brought in Ian Happ and Kris Bryant.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Reds: SS Zack Cozart (right quadriceps tightness) was held out of the lineup after playing on Friday. “It wasn’t 100 percent yesterday,” manager Bryan Price said. “I really want him to be able to play tomorrow.”

Cubs: Arrieta will throw a simulated game Wednesday, as will healthy LHP Jose Quintana. Though manager Joe Maddon was not ready to announce his rotation for the NLDS, they would figure to start Game 3 and Game 4, if necessary, at Wrigley Field.

UP NEXT

Left-hander Mike Montgomery (7-8, 3.45 ERA) starts the finale for the Cubs with Arrieta resting for the playoffs, while right-hander Deck McGuire (0-1, 4.15 ERA) makes his second career start for the Reds.


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Ian Poulter fumes after fans taking pictures cause him to make costly error | Sport

A furious Ian Poulter remained in contention for a first victory in five years despite a costly incident on day three of the British Masters.

Poulter recovered from an early double bogey at Close House to card a 68 and finish in a five-way tie for second on 11 under par, a shot behind Sweden’s Robert Karlsson.

The former Ryder Cup star found the water with his tee shot on the par-three fifth after being distracted by spectators taking pictures on their phones and was still seething hours later.

“What are we doing?” Poulter complained. “We’ve allowed them all to take pictures and videos and tell them to put them on silent, and it doesn’t work, does it?

“You get distracted on the wrong hole at the wrong time and it’s extremely penal and it’s really fucking annoying.”

Asked if mobile phones should be banned – as they are at Augusta National for the Masters – Poulter added: “No, I just think people need to educate themselves and understand it’s an issue for us and them. They don’t realise they distract us as much as they do. Ninety nine per cent of them are on silent and unfortunately there’s a couple which are not. You’re not expecting it because you think they’ve got it on silent.

“I’m angry and am going to continue to be angry until I wake up tomorrow morning. Throwing shots away for no reason is really annoying.”

Karlsson’s last European Tour title came in 2010, but the Ryder Cup vice-captain’s 67 was enough to leave him a shot ahead of Poulter, Tyrrell Hatton, Graeme Storm, Paul Dunne and Richie Ramsay.

Hatton held a three-shot lead at halfway, but could only card a 71 after two bogeys in the last four holes, while the tournament host, Lee Westwood, dropped three shots in the last six holes – his first bogeys all week – to fall three off the pace.

However, there was better news for late entry Rory McIlroy, who admitted his competitive juices were flowing again after a superb 64 took him to within two shots of the lead alongside Shane Lowry, Chris Hanson, George Coetzee and David Lingmerth.

“You get yourself into contention and you start to think about things and it would be nice to get a win,” said McIlroy, who had previously insisted he was unconcerned about possibly just the second winless season of his career, a season which will come to a self-imposed early end next week.

“The crowds have been fantastic. The last couple of tournaments I’ve been off pretty early on the weekends and had 50 people following me, where there’s thousands out there so it’s nice to get into that sort of environment again.”

Storm was equally happy to see McIlroy’s name in the frame, having beaten the Northern Irishman in a play-off for the South African Open in January.

“I saw his name go on the leaderboard and I was thinking this could be a bit of an omen, something which could be great for me again,” Hartlepool native Storm said.

“I’m disappointed I’m not leading the tournament, to be perfectly honest. I missed short putts on 12, 13 and 14 and should have been sitting pretty on the top of the leaderboard, but we’re in with a shout and that’s all I can do.”

With the course set up for low scoring, Ramsay was one of those to take advantage of the shortened ninth hole, driving the green on the par four and holing from 15 feet for eagle.

“I’ve just been there or thereabouts for a long, long time and I feel that getting in the mix tomorrow, back nine on Sunday, I just love it,” Ramsay said after a bogey-free 65.

“Pressure is just brilliant. Put me in that position, it’s the best place you can be. All the practice and it comes down the stretch under the pressure with a great field and also a great turnout, I can’t wait for it.”


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Palace like a boxer fighting in the wrong weight class, says Roy Hodgson – video | Football

Following their 4-0 defeat at Old Trafford, Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson likened his side to a boxer fighting in a different weight class to the likes of the two Manchester sides. He went on to suggest that the start to the season may end up as the start of an important learning process for his team


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Americans keeping rolling, 1 point away from Presidents Cup (Sep 30, 2017)


JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) The Americans came within one match of winning the Presidents Cup – on Saturday.

Anirban Lahiri made two clutch birdies that only delayed the inevitable. This is a powerful U.S. team playing to its potential, and the result is the biggest blowout since these matches began in 1994.

Lahiri and Si Woo Kim delivered the only victory for the International team over two sessions, and the Americans poured it on. They had a 14 1/2-3 1/2 lead, needing only one point Sunday to retain the cup.

Phil Mickelson set a record with his 25th victory. Jordan Spieth’s best intentions cost him a hole in a ruling rarely seen in match play, though that didn’t matter in another point.

The 11-point margin was the largest ever going into 12 singles matches Sunday.


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Josh Norman pledges $100,000 ‘as a start’ to aid Puerto Rico

Norman is looking to help Puerto Rico any way he can.
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman, like many Americans, is heartbroken about the plight of those suffering in Puerto Rico. Still without food, water or power in the wake of Hurricane Maria, the people of that island community are in a bad way.

On Saturday, Norman made it clear he’s going to do what he can, pledging $100,000 “as a start to help you guys out bc you are all citizens of U.S. Just like us.”

Earlier on Saturday, Miami Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso, whose father is from Puerto Rico, also did something to help. He pledged $25,000 and started a YouCaring page to aid the suffering people of Puerto Rico and Miami.

We applaud these athletes for doing what they can to provide help for the people who so desperately need it in Puerto Rico. Our thoughts and prayers are with them as they fight for survival.


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George Ford extends a generous hand to England No10 rival Marcus Smith | Sport

George Ford has told the latest player to challenge for his England fly-half jersey, the 18-year old Marcus Smith who trained with the national squad in Oxford last week, to be himself and never lose sight of why he was selected.

The pair faced each other on the day before the England squad met up when Leicester defeated Harlequins at The Stoop on an afternoon when the two outside-halves showcased their talent in front of the watching national head coach, Eddie Jones, although Smith departed early with a leg injury.

“I had a chat with Marcus when he first came into camp [in August],” says Ford. “When you come into these environments, sometimes you can be anxious or taken aback by it. The reason he is here is because of the way he has played and I told him to be himself.

“I texted him before he made his Premiership debut and said: ‘Make sure you enjoy it and be yourself because that is why you are the player you are.’ I think you can lose sight of that sometimes. There is so much other stuff going on, you are focusing on the opposition or getting the team into the right spots as a 10 and sometimes you need to sit back and think that you need to be yourself and enjoy it. It is important that you don’t lose sight of that.”

Ford has had a number of rivals since making his England debut in 2014, not least Owen Farrell who has since been moved to inside-centre, and he welcomes another one. “It is great for England because it shows there are young English players developing and being given a shot in the Premiership who are good enough to be called up, whatever their position,” he says. “It keeps lads on their toes when they have younger players coming in, training well and impressing. You have got to keep improving as a player yourself otherwise you will stand still and ultimately lose your spot. Competition brings out the best in people.

“Marcus is a talented lad with a good head and his feet on the ground. Teams target 10s relentlessly and taking hits is part and parcel of what playing in the position is. It will happen to him not because he is 18 and I said to him after last weekend’s game that he will be taking those hits in 10 years. He is tough and gets up and carries on. He will have no worries about that.”

Ford is in his second spell at Leicester after a sojourn in Bath, linking up with his England half-back partner Ben Youngs and forming a burgeoning midfield partnership with the Australia centre Matt Toomua. “I am loving being at the club,” he says. “It is early days but we are getting our game going and becoming consistent is our next challenge.

“I have always rated Matty massively, having played against him and watched him. I think you don’t fully understand the full aspect of what he is until you play alongside him. What he does at 12 to help a 10 out is incredible. It is hard to see but his communication, the way he defends and the way we talk about the game in the week tactically and coming up with ways to perform against the opposition is brilliant for me as an outside-half who still wants to learn. I am loving having a guy at 12 who can distribute, kick and carry. It is the way the game is going, trying to get the ball to spaces and cause a bit of trouble for the opposition.”

Ford missed out on the Lions tour to New Zealand with Farrell preferred as a fly-half along with Jonathan Sexton and Dan Biggar. “As soon as the selection was made I got my head down and cracked on,” he says. “I was excited about going to Argentina with England as I love the environment, which constantly challenges you and makes you a better player.

“It was a great experience because, with only a few experienced guys on the tour, I was involved in the leadership stuff on and off the field. We played an experienced Argentina team in pretty hostile environments and won both Tests playing some really good rugby. I really enjoyed it and learned a lot.”


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Tyronn Lue says Kevin Love could be Cavs’ permanent starting center

Kevin Love could soon become the center of attention in Cleveland … literally.

Cavs head coach Tyronn Lue said on Saturday that Love could be named the team’s permanent starting center, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN.

“Spacing opportunities, spacing the floor,” said Lue when asked what he liked about Love as a 5. “Being able to play through the elbows with multiple guys.”

The Cavs usually roll with Tristan Thompson as an undersized center next to Love at the 4. But Love is actually the taller of the two as well as an excellent rebounder in his own right. Sliding him up a position could also create an opening for a defensive-minded wing like Jae Crowder in the starting lineup and/or free up the lane so the Cavs could start say, Derrick Rose and Dwyane Wade in the backcourt (though their rim protection would definitely suffer).

It seems that Lue has increasingly wanted to emphasize Love on offense the deeper he has gotten into his head coaching tenure, and with Kyrie Irving no longer in the picture, this could be an excellent way to do just that.


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Mark McCall wants coaches to have say in length of Premiership season | Sport

Saracens’ Mark McCall, director of rugby at England’s most successful club this decade, believes coaches should be given a central role in the dispute over the length of the season that has prompted players to consider going on strike.

Premiership Rugby intends to run the domestic campaign over 10 months from 2019-20, starting in September and running until the end of June when international players will go on international tours. The Rugby Football Union has said it is a decision for the Professional Game Board, not clubs, but McCall wants those at the sharp end to have a say. “It would seem to be sensible to talk to all the parties who can contribute to the debate,” he said. “Directors of rugby should definitely be involved, the players as well. At the moment, you are reliant on your Premiership representative on the board to represent the collective view of the clubs, but this is an important issue for everyone.”

The Saracens captain, Brad Barritt, said while the issue was not preoccupying players, no one wanted a 10-month campaign. “Everyone has their take on it and what is universal is that no one wants to extend the length of the season,” he said. “I understand the debate to have the Premiership as strong as possible and the only way that could happen is if they reduced the number of games.”

David Humphreys, Gloucester’s director of rugby, said the season length was only one part of the debate. “There are a number of big issues, including the increased number of ‘A’ games and the salary cap. We would need a bigger squad if the season was lengthened and would have to increase the cap.”

Gloucester had 15 players unavailable because of injury for Friday night’s Premiership match at Sale, while Bath are without 13 for Sunday’s fixture at Wasps. “There are more injuries in the game now,” said Humphreys. “We have to ask where we are trying to take the game and how we are trying to get it there.

“Player welfare has to be the priority. We want them to have long careers and that should underpin everything. The directors of rugby meet regularly and we have discussions with our club owners and chief executives. We all know the direction we would like to go and there are still discussions to be had. We have a responsibility to give players a long break from the game [in the off-season]. We cannot have them leaving the game at 21, 22 or 23 because they are injured. We need to get this right.”

The England captain, Dylan Hartley, said it was different to the players’ strike in 2000 when the England squad downed boots in a dispute over appearance money and win bonuses. “It is about guys who are playing Premiership rugby every week,” the Northampton hooker said. “They are the ones who need to be considered. I get the chance of a fallow week here and there as an international. England players are a part of it, but it is not on my shoulders to lead the Martin Johnson strike of 2000. We have not had anything concrete put to us so we do not know what is going on. I won’t comment any further until I see what it is.”


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