Barcelona great Xavi Hernandez cannot imagine Lionel Messi leaving the Catalan club, despite the Argentine forward stalling over a new contract with the La Liga champions.Xavi is Barca’s all-time appearance leader and was the heartbeat of the club’s midfield from 1998-2015, spending nine years in the first team alongside Messi, who made his debut in 2004. (Also read: Lionel Messi’s father negotiating son’s transfer from Barcelona to PSG)”I’m in contact with Messi and I think he’s happy and satisfied. He knows Barcelona is the best club in the world for him and I can’t see him in any other club,” Xavi, who now plays for Al Sadd in Qatar, told radio station Cope on Friday.Messi is Barcelona’s all-time leading scorer but has yet to commit to an extension on his current contract, which runs out in 2018. His buy-out clause is set at 250 million euros ($266.03 million).”I haven’t spoken to him about his new contract but if I was to bet, I wouldn’t expect Messi to go to another club. He could get more money elsewhere but I don’t think he is interested in just money, he is more concerned about stability,” Xavi added. (Also read: Copa del Rey: Barcelona held by Hercules, Real Madrid romp into last-16)Xavi won 25 major trophies with Barcelona, including eight La Liga titles and four Champions Leagues, before leaving for Al Sadd in 2015.The former Spain international, 36, plans on becoming a coach when he retires from playing, saying his ultimate aim was to take over at Barcelona.advertisementBarcelona trail arch rivals Real Madrid by six points following a shaky display in last week’s 1-1 draw with Real Sociedad and could drop nine points behind their arch rivals when they meet in the ‘Clasico’ on Saturday.”Perhaps Barca are under more pressure because of the points gap but Clasicos are unique games, you can be 20 points behind and have a brilliant game or vice versa. The display at Real Sociedad means nothing,” Xavi said.Barcelona have an almost full strength squad available against Real and welcome back captain Andres Iniesta after six weeks out with a knee injury.Xavi believes the return of his former midfield partner will be pivotal to Barca’s chances of winning the game.”Iniesta is a transcendent player for Barcelona,” he added.”They say that now the team is lacking control and thought. Well, Iniesta will bring that back.”($1 = 0.9398 euros)
Danny Welbeck has broken his ankle and undergone surgery, Arsenal head coach Unai Emery has confirmed.Welbeck sustained the injury against Sporting CP in the Europa League on Thursday and Arsenal confirmed the following day that he was still in hospital.And speaking at a news conference following Sunday’s Premier League draw at home to Wolves, Emery confirmed widespread reports that Welbeck’s ankle was broken. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! “Danny’s injury is big,” Emery told reporters.”We spoke with him yesterday and today.”We support him. I think he will not be with us for a long time.”England international Welbeck was named in the Three Lions squad for a friendly against United States and Nations League clash with Croatia this week, but the striker now faces a long road to recovery.The damage he has suffered has been described as “significant” by the Gunners, with a long road to recovery stretching out ahead of him.Working his way back to fitness will be the top priority for the 27-year-old, but he also has issues regarding his future to address.Welbeck’s current contract is set to expire in the summer of 2019.There have been calls for him to be handed fresh terms as he starts a lengthy rehabilitation programme, but Arsenal are yet to reveal their plans.Prior to being laid low, Welbeck had netted five times in 14 appearances for the Gunners this season.
Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel held off a tremendous late charge from Mercedes rival Lewis Hamilton to win the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday and take the overall lead in the Formula One title race.Hamilton was catching the German on every lap but ultimately ran out of time and finished almost seven seconds behind.Ferrari and Sebastian Vettel are on top of the world as they race to victory at the #BahrainGP ???? pic.twitter.com/MEaIjv8YeY- Formula 1 (@F1) April 16, 2017″The car was really amazing to drive,” Vettel said. “Lewis was a threat towards the end and with the traffic you never know.”Vettel and Hamilton were level with a win each heading into this race, but Vettel’s second victory of the season and 44th of his career puts him in command.Sebastian Vettel is my kind of guy. Just wins the race and says he can’t wait to get back in the car to test in 2 days. #markoftrueracer- Mario Andretti (@MarioAndretti) April 16, 2017Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas finished third after starting from pole position for the first time in his career. It was his 11th podium. Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was fourth.Bottas made a clean start but Hamilton was beaten for pace by Vettel, who overtook him heading into the first corner.VET: “Something inside told me we had a good car for the race. The Easter hunt was on, but we found them [Mercedes] today!” #BahrainGP ???? pic.twitter.com/Kn8bWfrNhI- Formula 1 (@F1) April 16, 2017Hamilton’s hopes were also hit when the British driver was given a five-second time penalty early into the race for driving too slowly in the pit lane and holding up Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who was fifth.advertisement”The pit lane was really my fault so apologies to my team for losing time there,” Hamilton said. “Ferrari did a great job today.”There is strong mutual respect between three-time F1 champion Hamilton and four-time champion Vettel, and Hamilton gave him a warm handshake after the race.Vettel completed the 57 laps of the 5.4-kilometer (3.4-mile) track in 1 hour, 33 minutes, 53 seconds, for his third win in Bahrain after success with Red Bull in 2012 and 2013.It was 24 degrees Celsius (75 Fahrenheit) with a refreshing breeze when the race started at 6 p.m. local time (1500 GMT) and finished under floodlights.”The last half of the (final) lap, with the fireworks … I love what I do,” an emotional Vettel said on the podium.Bottas got away cleanly but crucially Hamilton was beaten for pace by Vettel, while Max Verstappen rocketed up from sixth to fourth after passing Raikkonen and Ricciardo.With Bottas losing power in his rear tires, Vettel sensed it was the right time to pit for new tires on lap 11.Verstappen asked his team to match that strategy and he came in on the next lap.But moments later, the Dutchman’s brakes failed and he drifted across the track and into the wall, his race over. The 19-year-old Verstappen, who had driven so well from 16th place on the grid to finish third in China last weekend, climbed out and kicked the barriers in frustration.The incidents were coming fast, with 18-year-old Lance Stroll hit from the side on lap 13 by Carlos Sainz Jr. and this forced the safety car to come out.Both Mercedes drivers used the safety car incident to pit for new tires, but Hamilton made the mistake of holding up Ricciardo.When the race began in earnest again on lap 17, Hamilton burst straight past Ricciardo into third while Vettel brilliantly defended the corner twice to fend off Bottas.By the halfway point, Vettel’s lead was six seconds over Hamilton, who had just passed Bottas, who pitted soon after.There was some frantic action behind the leaders, with Fernando Alonso battling it out in midfield. He was not happy with his car’s performance, though, saying “I’ve never raced with less power in my life” over the radio.With Hamilton gaining fast, Vettel came in for his second tire change on lap 34 and came out in fourth place behind Raikkonen.Hamilton was the new race leader, but with more than 20 laps to go, a time penalty still to take, and with Vettel on new tires, it was a precarious lead.Hamilton’s strategy was to make his tires last as long as possible but he came in with 15 laps left and took his time penalty.This put Bottas in second place, but he then backed off to let the quicker Hamilton through to chase Vettel down.”Thanks to Valtteri for being a gentleman,” Hamilton said.advertisementMeanwhile, Alonso retired one lap from the end, making it a third straight race without a point for McLaren. His teammate Stoffel Vandoorne did not even start because of an engine failure.
Harbhajan Singh on Monday became the 19th bowler and third Indian to pocket 200 wickets in the T20 format, picking up the all important wicket of Steve Smith against Rising Pune Supergiant at the Wankhede Stadium. Wicket number 2?0?0? in T20s for @harbhajan_singh!And, it’s #Smithy’s wicket too!#MIvRPS #CricketMeriJaan #MI pic.twitter.com/iPOa4UsiET- Mumbai Indians (@mipaltan) April 24, 2017He had dropped a catch of Steve Smith the over before, off a Karn Sharma delivery but came back later to clean up his stumps.Harbhajan has played the shortest format for India, Mumbai Indians, North Zone, Punjab and Surrey.Of the 200 wickets, 123 came for the Mumbai Indians while 25 were added to his kitty as an Indian cricketer.Harbhajan last played for India against UAE in the Asia Cup T20 in Dhaka last year. The Turbanator has bowled with guile this year in the IPL.
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Mumbai, May 3 (PTI) Actor Akshay Kumar has shared a video message with students going through exam stress where he has advised them against bottling up their emotions.The 49-year-old actor, who will receive the National Award for best actor for his performance in “Rustom” today, took to Twitter to share an anecdote from his childhood in an almost five-minute-long clip.Akshay said he owes the prestigious award to his parents and remembered how supportive they were when he scored poorly in his exams.”My father sat me down and calmly asked me what I wanted to do. I told him I was interested in sports. As time passed, I got into martial arts after sports, which was followed by modelling and acting.”I feel if that day my parents had not supported me, winning the National Award would seem like a distant dream,” he said.Akshay also urged the parents to take more interest in their childrens lives and treat mental illness like any other medical issue.He implored the youth “not to take life lightly” and understand its value.”Dont bottle up your emotions. Share them with your near and dear ones. Suicide is no solution to end stress,” Akshay added. PTI RDS BK
BMW has silently launched the new 330i petrol Sportline edition in India for a price of Rs 42.4 lakh (ex showroom, New Delhi) for the base trim and Rs 44.9 lakh (ex-showroom, New Delhi) for the M Sport variant. With this, BMW has added two new petrol variants to the 3 series range in India.Design:The new BMW 330i comes with a coupe-like curved roof line that underlines the lightness with which it brings its sporting character onto the road. Along with the chrome elements and surfaces in high-gloss black emphasise its sporting flair in the interior as well.BMW 3 seriesThe elongated bonnet and the pointed contours from C pillar to the car body impart a dynamic forward thrust. In the side view, the frameless windows and the flowing roof line emphasise the classic sporty coupe character, while the L-shaped lights at the rear underline the broad shape of the vehicle.Engine:Under the hood of the BMW 330i comes with a 2.0 litre, 4 cylinder, Twin-Power petrol engine that churns out 248 bhp of peak power and 350 Nm of peak torque, mated to an eight-speed Steptronic Sport automatic transmission. The BMW 330i also gets four drive modes- COMFORT, ECOPRO, Sport and Sport+.BMW 3 seriesFeatures:On the inside, door of the new BMW 330i Sportline come with sill finishers in aluminium with “BMW” designation, Sports seats with Sensatec Black, Sport leather steering wheel with Red contrast stitching, Car key with Red detailing, Instrument cluster with speedometer and revolution counter with chronoscaling and red contrast ring.advertisementBMW 3 seriesMoreover, it also gets Air conditioning and radio control unit with chrome detailing, Interior trim finishers in Black high-gloss with accent in Coral Red matt or Interior trim finishers in Fine-wood trim ‘Fineline’ Anthracite with accent in Pearl Chrome and Orange or white variable Ambient light. Safety Features:On the safety front, the BMW 330i gets six airbags with three-point seats belts, ABS with brake assist, Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) along with ISOFIX.BMW 3 seriesIn terms of safety, the BMW 3 Series 330i versions get Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Brake Assist, Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) including Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), ISOFIX , three-point seat belts and 6 airbags.ALSO READ: 2017 BMW 5 Series to launch in India next monthALSO READ: BMW teases new 8 Series coupe, to showcase on May 26ALSO READ: BMW G310R India launch delayed till end of 2017
After a plethora of melancholic outfits, Shraddha Kapoor is back with a bang in an impressive attire.From weird shoes to unflattering skirts–Shraddha’s dry fashion spell is over, it seems, and we’re beaming with happiness.Shraddha donned a chic maxi dress for a promotional event of her upcoming film, Half Girlfriend, and finally broke her fashion-blunder streak.Picture courtesy: Instagram/shraddhakapoor The Aashiqui 2 actress was spotted in the cross-halter-neck maxi dress by Babita Malkani, looking unquestionably serene.Also Read: Why would you wear that t-shirt if you want people to watch your movies, Shraddha?The white empire-waist dress had an abstract black print all over, with a tinge of chrome, which made it all the more vibrant. Also Read: Shraddha Kapoor looks like she’s dressed for battle! Shraddha had donned a pair of black open, strap sandals by Steve Madden with the ultra-graceful ensemble.Picture courtesy: Instagram/shraddhakapoor Sporting a statement ring by Aquamarine Jewellery, the actress carried her casual-yet-chic look with a calm demeanor. With her long locks left loose, and minimal makeup on, she was at her simple best, once again.We missed this fashionable side of you, Shraddha. We really did.
The richest cricket board in the world is looking for a head coach again. The advertisement for the top job is already up on the BCCI website and calls for candidates to apply until May 31st. Current Indian coach Anil Kumble’s one year contract expires on June 20th by which time the Champions trophy would also have concluded.And irrespective of how India fares in the current tournament, with the progress the team has made over the last year climbing the ladder to the top of ICC Test rankings, it would be surprising to see the BCCI look for anyone beyond Kumble.Why the advertisement then? “The contract of the current Indian coach is coming to an end on June 20th. There would be a vacancy on June 21st and a procedure is being followed. The same process that was adopted last time is being adopted again,” acting BCCI Secretary Amitabh Choudhary tells India Today.Interestingly among the criteria laid down in the advert up on the BCCI website also refers to a preference for an Indian coach.It reads, “Communication skills befitting the coach of an international team are mandatory along with the ability to effectively convey the right messages and must demonstrate proficiency in English. It is desirable to communicate in Hindi and other regional languages.” This language clause may discourage any foreign coach of repute to apply for the job even if he were to overlook the meaninglessness of the exercise given India’s performance under Kumble.For the record, BCCI maintains the procedure would be without bias or favour. “The advertisement has been put on the website and it does not prevent anyone from applying nor does it support anyone. It does not stop anyone who has been a coach earlier to apply. This is what has been decided by the COA and correctly so,” Choudhary adds clarifying that there is no dispute on the issue with the Committee of Administrators (COA) either.advertisementThe futility of the exercise not withstanding, this will again bring to life the illustrious Cricket Advisory Committee comprising of Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman to interview candidates.Apparently, some BCCI officials are unhappy with Kumble’s lead role in negotiating pay hike for himself and the players.However, that may not necessarily be a detriment to his chances of continuing as India coach. According to a BCCI source, a call on the extension will be taken after the interview process.”Anil Kumble negotiating pay hike is fine but his extension will be decided after a transparent interview process if over.”With the current coach taking home a cool Rs 6.5 crore a year, let’s not be surprised if the CAC still has some work to do despite Kumble being the overwhelming favourite to keep his job.
New Delhi, June 2 (PTI) Haryana plans to have a state- of-the-art Science City built on the lines of Kolkatas famed science complex.Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar met Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma today to discuss the proposal, which is slated to be developed at a cost of Rs 191 crore by the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM) under the Ministry of Culture.Khattar, accompanied by a team, suggested two sites – Sonepat and Gurugram — be studied for the project. The areas have enough land for the development of a sprawling Science City, he said.Sharma assured Khattar of an in-principle approval for the proposal and said an NCSM team would soon visit the suggested sites to assess the feasibility of the project.The minister set a deadline of October 31, 2018, for the completion of the project, which is also the deadline for all projects of the culture and tourism ministries.The proposed Science City will boast of thematic galleries, a fun-filled science gallery and a high voltage sports theatre, among other attractions.Kolkatas Science City — built on 49.6 acres of land — was set up in 1997 under the NCSM. PTI ASG BDS
Lisbon, Jun 24 (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi today hailed the contributions of the more than 65,000 Indians in Portugal, saying they were Indias “real ambassadors” and have enriched the culture of the country they have made their home.”Indians have carried their cultural heritage with them and have always been proud of them,” Modi said addressing the diaspora Indians in Lisbon.The prime minister cited the diversity of language and taste in India to point out that Indians can adapt to the culture of the country they live. “You have effortlessly gelled with the culture of the country you have been,” he said.Modi hailed Indians in Portugal as the “real ambassadors of India” in that country.On Portugals historic relations with India, Modi said the country is tied with India in many ways, including through sports. “Who has not heard of Christiano Ronaldo. His name fills every sportsperson in India with energy.”He said Portugal has historical ties with India, but a special one with Gujarat and narrated the story of Kutch sailor Kanji Malam, who helped the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama discover the sea route from Europe to India in 1497.Kanji Malam had navigated the commander to Calicut from Malindi on east African coast.”The Radha Krishna Temple is the symbol of social conscience in Portugal. People here do not discriminate, and that is the identity of Indians, the diversity of India,” he said to the gathering after visiting the temple along with Prime Minister Antonia Costa, who is the first prime minister of Indian origin in Europe.advertisementHe also highlighted the role Portugal is playing in furthering the message of Yoga, an ancient Indian spiritual discipline. Modi thanked Costa for promoting wellness movement through yoga as a holistic health care practice.Modi is the first Indian prime minister to visit Portugal for a bilateral trip, though Atal Bihari Vajpayee had visited the country but it was for a European Union conference in 2000. PTI ABH NSA AKJ ABH
Austrian eighth seed Dominic Thiem fought back from a set down to defeat Frenchman Gilles Simon 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 on Thursday and move into the Wimbledon third round for the first time.Thiem, viewed as one of the talents that could, in time, push to enter the tennis elite, finished emphatically with an 135 mph ace, the last of three huge serves with which he closed out.The 23-year-old reached the semi-finals of the French Open for the second straight year last month, crushing Novak Djokovic in the quarter-finals, and has fourth-round appearances in the Australian Open and U.S. Open.Although he has yet to replicate that clay and hard-court form on grass, his display against the experienced Simon will leave him confident of getting past American Jared Donaldson or Italian Paolo Lorenzi in the next round.”It’s still not my natural surface,” Thiem told Reuters after his win.”But, of course, these victories give me a lot of confidence, also on this surface. For the first time in the third round of Wimbledon is also pretty special,” he added.What was evident though, as Thiem took control after losing the first set, was that the Austrian has been working on elements of his game that can help him on grass.”Footwork, of course, is important. Then, of course, I cannot change my swings and everything, but I try to play with less spin, to come in a little bit more. I worked on my volleys,” he said.”I didn’t work specifically on my grasscourt game. I think if I improve my game in general, it’s also going to improve on grass,” he added.advertisementThe Austrian now has a 6-2 record against Simon and has won their past five matches although this was their first meeting on grass.The 32-year-old Simon has shown a liking for the surface in the past — reaching the Wimbledon quarter-finals in 2015 — and that showed as he clinched the first set.But Thiem’s serve was strong, he won 78 percent of points on his first serve — he produced 17 aces overall and hit 45 winners to Simon’s 22.”I felt well at my serve the whole match. I had a quite good percentage, many aces I think. It’s an important shot on grass.”Of course, the last game was perfect for me. I’m happy, especially with my serve today,” he added.
Arjun Tendulkar, son of legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, yesterday joined the Indian cricket team during their net session, ahead of the first New Zealand ODI in Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium.Arjun was seen bowling to Indian cricket team skipper Virat Kohli and other batsmen in the nets.The official Twitter account of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) also posted the pictures of 17-year-old Arjun bowling to the players.”We are at the Wankhede Stadium and our preparations for the #INDvNZ have begun,” BCCI tweeted.We are at the Wankhede Stadium and our preparations for the #INDvNZ have begun. pic.twitter.com/DoeBzcCXSc- BCCI (@BCCI) October 20, 2017Last month, Arjun was selected in Mumbai’s Under-19 squad for JY Lele All India Under-19 Invitational One Day Tournament, which was held in Baroda.The 17-year-old has previously been part of the Mumbai Under-14 and Under-16 teams.Contrary to his father Sachin, Arjun is a left-handed all-rounder, who is more known for bowling seam ups.
England and Spain will have their eyes firmly trained on the history books waiting to christen them as first-time champions of the FIFA U-17 World Cup when the two footballing hotshots renew acquaintances in the hotly-anticipated final here on Saturday.In the first all-European final of this competition, England, who have never gone beyond the quarter-finals and are looking to emulate the U-20 boys, will have revenge on their minds while European champions Spain — runners up thrice — aim to brighten their trophy cabinet with a World Cup crown.It was only in May this year that Spain colts, known as La Rojita, pipped England 4-1 on penalties to bag the UEFA U-17 European Championships in Croatia.That was the third meeting of the two teams in the final of the European Championships with Spain triumphant in 2007, and the Young Lions exacting revenge three years later.One day until the #FIFAU17WC final! ??? pic.twitter.com/NuI5SYQVTS- England (@England) October 27, 2017The Spaniards once more emerged victorious in May, but only after a nail-biting climax. England went ahead twice and frittered their advantage, with Spain’s second equaliser coming in the sixth minute of stoppage time. Spain went on to win on penalties.Cut to India, where England have been perfect leading up to the summit clash, with Spain peaking at the right time, it promises to be a lip-smacking affair at the colossal Vivekananda YubaBharti Krirangan, expected to be packed to the rafters.It has been a landmark year for England so far, who since the Booby Moore led team’s World Cup win in 1966, had failed to achieve any sort of success at the international level .advertisement??????Skipper Joel Latibeaudiere taking inspiration from @England’s #U20WC triumph after reaching #FIFAU17WC final ??????https://t.co/sTGLjUVrQX pic.twitter.com/vdqOqeSKnF- #FIFAU17WC ????????? (@FIFAcom) October 25, 2017The jinx was broken in June, when the U-20 side lifted the World Cup beating Venezuela in the final.The U-19 team picked up from there, bagging the UEFA European U-19 Championship crown a month later.With Steve Cooper’s side registering a clinical 3-1 victory over three-time champions Brazil in the semi-final here, they became the fourth England youth team to reach a final in the calendar year.Since the 4-0 bossing of Chile in the U-17 tournament opener, England have made it clear who the trailblazers would be.Mexico threatened to rein them in with a quickfire second-half blitz from Diego Lainez while Japan frustrated them even further, dragging the round of 16 game to England’s most dreaded penalties. On both occasions, the boys in white showed composure which Cooper feels belies their age. Iraq were also dealt with 4-0.They were head and shoulders above the US in the quarter-final in Goa — the only game they played out of Kolkata — and dictated a flair-filled Brazil. England are the only team in the tourney to have won all their games leading up to the final.In Spain though, they face their sternest test yet.Santiago Denia’s boys have gone from strength to strength in the tournament and look unrecognisable from the team that lost the first game to Brazil 1-2 in Kochi.After registering two facile wins over Niger and Korea DPR in Group D to qualify for the knockout stages, Spain underlined their title credentials with a strong 2-1 performance against in-form France.They bettered their showing against Iran who had defeated Germany 4-0 in the preliminary round and in the semis, sent Mali packing 3-1.At the heart of their display was skipper Abel Ruiz who led from the front.Scoring six goals in six games, the FC Barcelona youth striker alongwith Valencia’s Ferran Torres, who plays down the right channel, and Real Madrid’s attacking midfielder Cesar Gelabert form a formidable trio up front for Spain.England will bank on Liverpool’s Rhian Brewster who is currently the tournament’s leading marksman (7 goals), having scored back-to-back hat-tricks against the US and Brazil.Manchester City’s Phil Foden has been a live-wire in creating chances while George McEachran has no replacement as a holding midfielder who can also unlock rival defences with his jinking runs down the middle.In defence, skipper City’s Joel Latibeaudiere has been a rock.Since the Brazil loss, Spain have not floundered much while it would be hard to put a finger on any chinks in England’s armour. A battle of attrition awaits.Squads:England: Curtis Anderson, Josef Bursik, William Crelin; Timothy Eyoma, Joel Latibeaudiere, Marc Guehi, Jonathan Panzo, Lewis Gibson, Steven Sessegnon, Morgan Gibbs White, Tashan Oakley Boothe; Conor Gallagher, Angel Gomes, Nya Kirby, George McEachran; Callum Hudson Odoi, Philip Foden, Emile Smith Rowe, Rhian Brewster, Danny LoaderadvertisementSpain: Alvaro Fernandez, Mateu Jaume, Juan Miranda, Hugo Guillamon, Victor Chust, Antonio Blanco, Ferran Torres, Mohamed Moukhliss, Abel Ruiz, Sergio Gomez, Nacho Diaz, Pedro Ruiz, Marc Vidal, Alvaro Garcia, Eric Garcia, Diego Pampin, Jose Lara, Cesar Gelabert, Carlos Beitia, Victor Perea, Alfonso Pastor.
Famous Formula One racer Michael Schumacher has been out of commission for over three years now after a ski accident which lead to serious head injuries. Keeping his injurious state aside, he has been a legend at the racing tracks for a long time.On his 48th birthday, here’s a story about a man and his passion for a revved up life.A racing star is bornMichael Schumacher was born on January 3, 1969, in the Hurth area of North Rhine-Westphalia, in Germany. His father, Rolf Schumacher, a bricklayer, helped sow the racing seeds in him early on as the four-year-old Michael’s pedal kart was modified with a motorcycle engine. Soon, he crashed it into a lamp post. After this incident, his father took him to a kart track for the first time.The first bloodAt just five years, little Michael Schumacher won his first race and a year later, his first club championship. His family wasn’t particularly wealthy and he would often race using the discarded tyres of other wealthier competitors. With the help of a few friends, sponsors and local businessmen, he progressed into the world of racing. Moving to real carsIn the year 1988, Schumacher raced in cars in for two series. He wasn’t that impressive in the German Formula Ford but then, he won the Formula Konig. It was during this race that Willi Weber noticed his potential and later signed him up for his Formula 3 team. Later, in the following year, he became Schumacher’s manager. Formula Three championWith Willi Weber’s backing, he raced his first Formula 3 bout and finished at third position. He later on won the championship in the year 1990. It was during this race that he met two of his respected arch nemesis for future Formula One races, a certain Finn and Mika Hakkinen.advertisement Formula One debutSchumacher made his F1 debut on August 25, 1991 after a year racing in sports cars for Mercedes. The track was Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium. The Formula One engineers were blown away by his testing times at previous circuits. However, his debut didn’t go as planned as his car suffered a gearbox failure right after a few hundred yards. A series of wins and recordsChampionship titles: 7 (1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004)Consecutive titles: 5 (2000-2004)Championship won with most races left: 6 (2002)Race wins: 91A fight for lifeDuring the end of December 2013, he got severely injured while skiing with friends and his 14-year-old son in the Alpine resort of Meribel in France. He hit his head on a rock and suffered severe head injuries. He then underwent two surgeries under critical condition. He never fully recovered from it and was kept under a medically induced coma for a bit.Although he has been moved to Lausanne, Switzerland, now, no update on his recovery has been given yet. He has rare moments of consciousness and awakening. It has been three years after the tragic incident and his family has asked for privacy during his long phase of rehabilitation.Interested in General Knowledge and Current Affairs? Click here to stay informed and know what is happening around the world with our G.K. and Current Affairs section.To get more updates on Current Affairs, send in your query by mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
PITTSBURGH — Martin St. Louis has only been in New York a few months.Still, the Rangers’ locker room feels like home, a sanctuary the veteran forward needed while trying to deal with one of the worst days of his life.Only hours removed from sitting with his family in Montreal trying to come to grips with the death of his mother, St. Louis was in Pittsburgh with his teammates for an emotional 5-1 victory in Game 5 that extended New York’s season and served as a fitting tribute to someone St. Louis called “the best human being I ever met.”“She was with me the whole way,” St. Louis said.St. Louis and his father talked about whether he should just stay in Canada to mourn. They both knew what France St. Louis would have said.“I owed it to her to do it,” St. Louis said. “I know she would have wanted me to play. I was a tough day for everyone, but we’ve got to keep pushing.”Now it’s on to Game 6 — Mother’s Day — for a series that suddenly looks competitive now that the Rangers have apparently solved their woes with the man advantage.Derick Brassard scored twice, Chris Kreider, Ryan McDonagh and Kevin Klein added their first goals of the postseason for New York and Henrik Lundqvist stopped 31 shots.St. Louis had one shot in 16:19 of ice time, all of it with his mother in his thoughts. “She was with me the whole way, but this is probably the most comfortable place you can be as a hockey player,” he said.The Rangers certainly looked at ease while the Penguins failed to win a close-out game for the sixth time in their last seven chances on home ice. Evgeni Malkin had his third goal of the series for Pittsburgh and Marc-Andre Fleury made 30 saves but lacked the crispness that allowed the Penguins to sweep Games 3 and 4 in New York.“I don’t think there’s much good to take from it to be honest with you,” Pittsburgh star Sidney Crosby said. “So I think we have to make sure we come with the right mindset going to New York. Whatever mindset we were tonight it wasn’t enough.”While Penguins coach Dan Bylsma stressed the importance of putting the Rangers away, the fire he was looking for from his bench came from the guys in white sweaters a couple stalls over.Pittsburgh committed a pair of sloppy penalties the Rangers finally turned into goals and couldn’t convert a lengthy 5-on-3 power play late in the second period as it tried to climb out of a three-goal deficit.“At the start I think we played like a team that looked like we had an automatic bid to the next round,” Penguins defenseman Rob Scuderi said. “When it’s 2-0 right off the bat and you’re playing from behind it’s not easy.”Pittsburgh held the Rangers to a 15 shots in Game 4, a franchise record for fewest shots allowed in a playoff game. New York had 17 in the first period Friday night.Having its beleaguered power play finally look competent helped. The Rangers hadn’t scored with the man advantage since Game 2 of the first round, an 0-for-36 stretch that often featured disinterested or disorganized play by New York whenever an opposing player skated to the penalty box.Kreider ended the miserable run 9:36 into the first period after Pittsburgh defenseman Robert Bortuzzo was called for delay of game for lazily flipping a puck over the boards in the Penguins’ zone despite having no pressure on him.Playing in his second game after missing more than a month with a hand injury, Kreider threaded a rebound from the bottom of the left circle in a small hole between Fleury’s right pad and his blocker to give the Rangers their first lead in more than 180 minutes of play.Brassard made it 2-0 just over 5 minutes later, diving across the Pittsburgh crease to bang home Mats Zuccarello’s rebound.The Penguins seemed to regain their swagger in the second period and Malkin cut the lead in half at the end of a thrilling burst in which he beat two Rangers to the net and did a 360-degree spin before slipping his own rebound by Lundqvist.The momentum didn’t last. The Rangers scored twice in the second to make it 4-1 and Pittsburgh never threatened to make it close.Now it’s back to Madison Square as the Rangers try to win a series after trailing 3-1 for the first time in franchise history.(WILL GRAVES, AP Sports Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shares
LONDON, ENGLAND — It is, of course, much too early to try to read something into the first round of matches in a Premier League season that has another 37 games and more than eight months to run.But it’s just too tempting.Especially as some of the surprises in an entertaining start will clearly have an impact on the coming weekend’s action — at least for Chelsea and Arsenal.The Blues now face one of their toughest games of the season – at Manchester City – without goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, following the Belgian’s rash decision to clatter into Bafetimbi Gomis during its 2-2 home draw with Swansea.New signing Asmir Begovic, whose first touch was to pick the ball out of the Chelsea net after Gomis had converted the resulting penalty, should make his full debut for the champions at Etihad Stadium.And it promises to be a tight game. Though Chelsea lacked the rhythm that will come as the season progresses, Jose Mourinho’s side still showed plenty of power and attacking intent against Swansea — particularly whenever Willian or Eden Hazard were on the ball.With a nervous Manchester United needing an own goal by Kyle Walker to beat Tottenham, Manchester City was by far the most convincing of English football’s Big Four with its 3-0 win at West Bromwich Albion.When players like Yaya Toure, who scored twice at the Hawthorns, and David Silva are on the kind of form they showed Monday night, the 2012 and 2014 champions are an astonishingly good side.Add the 49 million pounds ($76 million) paid to Liverpool for Raheem Sterling and the goalscoring talent of Sergio Aguero, and it’s not difficult to see the potential for a third league trophy in five seasons.Or of an early title claim when Chelsea coming visiting on Sunday.Given Courtois’ automatic suspension, Chelsea fans will have left Stamford Bridge on Saturday with even longer faces and even bigger regrets after Petr Cech was allowed to move to Arsenal.About 24 hours later, those opinions may have been revised with the 33-year-old’s calamitous league debut for his new club.For a man who makes very few mistakes in a season, two blunders after less than an hour is certainly a worrying start, and was enough to consign Arsene Wenger’s side to an embarrassing 2-0 home defeat to West Ham.While trying to explain what he acknowledged were two very cheap goals, Wenger pointed to West Ham being further advanced in its preparation for the season. After all, Slaven Bilic’s side had already played three rounds of Europa League football.Wenger was factually correct. But whether taking on the likes of Birkirkara from the Maltese Premier League and Astra Giurgiu of Romania counts as preparation for facing one of the best sides in Europe is a moot point.More important is the fact that Sunday’s defeat already puts Arsenal under an unwelcome degree of pressure ahead of this weekend’s game against Crystal Palace.Arsenal had a good domestic season in 2014-15, finishing third in the league and winning a second consecutive FA Cup. The major disappointment came from a poor start – with just two wins from the opening eight league games – that effectively dashed any realistic hopes of winning the title.So Sunday turned into precisely the kind of nightmare that Arsenal had been determined to avoid. And the extent to which it is already playing mind games can be gauged from the comments made afterward by defender Per Mertesacker.Looked at dispassionately, losing the first of 38 games means nothing.Yet Mertesacker went so far as to describe Sunday’s upset as “a massive loss”, adding that “to start with a game like that is not good, but to bounce back is even more important now.”It’s a far cry from the relative optimism that Louis van Gaal’s new-look United should be taking to Aston Villa in the first of the season’s Friday night fixtures.With four new signings in the starting lineup and a fifth – Bastian Schweinsteiger – coming on in the second half, United should have looked pretty disjointed in the middle and vulnerable at the back against Tottenham.Neither was the case.It may not have been a slick performance, and there was more sideways passing than is usually welcomed by the Old Trafford faithful, but United looked a very sharp unit at times.Right back Matteo Darmian and defensive midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin both made promising debuts, although it’s open to question whether Wayne Rooney is best used as a target man, rather than as a marauding No. 10.Signing another striker, and resolving the future of goalkeeper and Real Madrid target David De Gea, would certainly do United no harm in the days ahead.And Aston Villa probably won’t either, for that matter.TweetPinShare0 Shares
NEW YORK — Jacob deGrom approached Mets pitching coach Dan Warthen in the dugout Friday night.“So how’s Tuesday looking? I said it to him a few times,” the NL Rookie of the Year recalled. “He kept saying, ‘We’ll see. We’ll see.’”Concerned about a late-season slump in the 27-year-old right-hander’s first full big league season, Mets manager Terry Collins said deGrom won’t start against Atlanta next week and could have his rotation turn skipped.“So I guess we’ve seen now,” deGrom said with a smile before Saturday’s 5-0 loss to the Mets.The personable pitcher whose shaggy shoulder-length locks prompted a #HairWeGo promotion campaign, is 13-8 with a 2.64 ERA in 28 starts this year, including 1-2 with a 6.41 ERA and a .330 opponents’ batting average in his past five outings.“The location of his pitches is not what it needs to be,” Collins said. “This guy became extremely successful because of the sink with his fastball, where he got ground balls, and right now he’s getting fly balls ’cause everything seems to be moving up.”While deGrom’s fastball averages 96 mph, Collins is concerned about the pitcher’s release point.“I’ve been more up in the zone than I want to be,” deGrom said. “Normally I pitch down and then go up when I want to.”New York has limited the innings of Matt Harvey and Noah Syndergaard, but deGrom doesn’t have any such restrictions.He didn’t pitch between Aug. 7 and 23 last year because of tendinitis in his right rotator cuff. When he returned, he went 3-1 with a 2.25 ERA in six starts.“I felt really good after that. I think I needed that time last year. There was some shoulder fatigue going on there,” deGrom said. “But this year I feel fine.”Logan Verrett, a 25-year-old rookie right-hander who has made two spot starts when Harvey was skipped, will take deGrom’s place Sept. 22 against Atlanta. Collins said results against the Yankees this weekend will help determine whether deGrom is pushed back or skipped.“It can’t hurt,” deGrom said. “That’s what they chose to do, so that’s what we’re going to do.”(RONALD BLUM, AP Baseball Writer)TweetPinShare0 Shares
NEW YORK — President Barack Obama plans to attend the Tampa Bay Rays’ exhibition game in Cuba on March 22.Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communications and Speechwriting, tweeted the news March 1 after Major League Baseball and the players’ association announced arrangements had been finalized for the game against the Cuban National Team in Havana.“It adds a great dimension to the trip, and it’s going to shine an even greater spotlight on the events and on Major League Baseball,” Rays President of Baseball Operations Matt Silverman said.It will be MLB’s first trip to the Communist island nation since the Baltimore Orioles played there in 1999. The game will be televised by ESPN and ESPN Deportes.“During a time of historic change, we appreciate the constructive role afforded by our shared passion for the game, and we look forward to experiencing Cuba’s storied baseball tradition and the passion of its many loyal fans,” baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement.Manfred drew the Rays on Nov. 13 from a bin of teams that wanted to make the trip. U.S. teams played spring training games in Cuba before Fidel Castro’s revolution, but none appeared there from March 1959 until the Orioles faced Cuba’s national team in Havana in March 1999.“We’re extremely excited as a group to be a part of this process,” Rays pitcher Chris Archer said. “In a sense, we’re part of something that’s extremely historic for both countries, and looking to mingle and experience the culture of a place where we haven’t been able to travel freely for a while.”Hundreds of workers were at the Latin America Stadium, built in 1946 and said to have a seating capacity of 55,000. They are fixing the roof, repairing damaged seating areas and grooming the field surface.Workers with jackhammers broke up damaged pavement outside, and painters brightened the stadium exterior.“We’re excited to be part of this trip. For us, it’s about spreading goodwill through baseball,” Silverman said on a conference call. “We’re excited for the opportunity and to experience firsthand the baseball culture of Cuba.“Logistically, there will be some challenges. But the players’ association and Major League Baseball worked hard to minimize the disruptions. Our first priority is getting ready for opening day. And we worked hard to make sure that this trip won’t interfere much, if at all, with those preparations,” he added.Fewer than 40 players will make the trip, but the Rays were yet to have in-depth discussions about the composition of the roster, Silverman said.“We’ve been working with Major League Baseball and the State Department to figure out the visas and the exact size. It hasn’t been finalized yet,” he said.“It’ll be a traditional traveling baseball party, and then a number of our front office will also be attending. There will be a few special guests. But the contingent won’t be that large. It can’t be larger than the two planes we’re going to take down there.”___AP Sports Writer Fred Goodall in Port Charlotte, Florida, and freelance writer Desmond Boylan in Havana contributed to this reportTweetPinShare0 Shares