The Melling Chase is the highlight on day two of the Grand National festival at Aintree.That looks to be a straight shootout between Fox Norton and the Gordon Elliott-trained Sub Lieutenant.They go to post in that one at 3.25. Stock photo of horse racing | Photo © Pixabay The first race of the day – the Handicap Hurdle – is off at 1.40.Meanwhile there’s an eight-race card at Wexford this evening, where the first is off at 6.A seven-race card at Dundalk gets underway just five-minutes earlier.
Marcus Rashford’s superb free kick means Manchester United will return to Old Trafford with an away goal in their back pocket in their Europa League semi final.The teenage striker struck midway through the second half to give United a 1-nil victory over Celta Vigo.After the game, Jose Mourinho again hinted he could field a weakened team in the Premier League against Arsenal on Sunday.Tottenham can close the gap on Premier League leaders Chelsea to just a solitary point tonight. Mauricio Pochettino’s side make the trip across London to face West Ham.Kick off at the Olympic Stadium is at 8. Photo © Pixabay
* Spanish Ambassador, Barnuevo joins Tebas to open LaLiga Nigeria OfficePresident of LaLiga, Javier Tebas listed the benefits of the three-month old partnership with the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) when he was joined by the Ambassador of Spain to Nigeria, Alfonso Barnuevo to formally open the LaLiga office in Nigeria located inside the Corporate Headquarters of the League Management Company (LMC) in Maitama District, Abuja.The LaLiga President afterwards spoke at a media conference where he restated the Spanish League body’s commitment to making the five-year commercial and technical partnership with the NPFL a success.He recalled that he led a delegation of LaLiga officials to Nigeria in April to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the LMC and noted that “we are here today to open a LaLiga Office in Nigeria in furtherance of that understanding.”According to Tebas, the benefits of the partnership would be attained in phases citing the coming tour of Spain by a select All-Star team of NPFL players.In listing the benefits of the partnership, the LaLiga President stated, “We have made good progress in the three months of the understanding signed between us and Nigeria football league and in a few weeks, an All-Star team from Nigeria will tour LaLiga and we are taking care of the travel and accommodation of 40 members of the team.“During this tour, the team will play three matches in Spain and will be watched by the Directors of top LaLiga clubs who make decisions and this may result in some Nigeria League players being invited to the clubs. We also will be sending experts to interact with NPFL Club Managers and share knowledge and also send coaches to work at the grassroots academies for development of youth football.”He also assured the audience made up of the LMC top executives, Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) board members, NPFL club chairmen and the media that with time, “LaLiga clubs would also visit Nigeria to play friendly matches…yes, Barcelona can come to Nigeria and that will mean that the NPFL is a big league”.Tebas said the partnership is providing opportunities for mutual benefit of both leagues and concluded, “I am sure that by the time the first five years of the partnership ends, LaLiga and NPFL will be bigger”.Ambassador Alfonso Barnuevo said he was happy to see Nigeria and Spain extend cooperation to football and predicted that there is a bright future ahead.“As Spanish Ambassador, I have to express my satisfaction that one of the strongest institution in Spain, and probably one of the best known worldwide, LaLiga, has established office in Abuja. I see a bright future ahead”, the Ambassador remarked“I am very happy that the already fruitful relationship between Nigeria and Spain is expanding to other domains. Nigeria is a strategic partner of Spain in energy matters. As you know, Spain is the third best client of Nigeria, buying 4.6 billion euros in gas and oil…”. Barnuevo added.Chairman of LMC, Shehu Dikko in a closing remark expressed appreciation to the LaLiga partners and took time to list some of the breakthroughs the LMC has made in recent months, citing a letter of commendation from FIFA on the league’s governance structure.“We are delighted by some of the modest achievements we have attained and want to thank LaLiga for the partnership and their decision to open an office here. More importantly, we believe more can be achieved with the support of all stakeholders”, Dikko remarked.Some of the personalities at the ceremony include a representative of the NFF President, Alhaji Ibrahim Gusau, NFF Board member, Ahmed Fresh Yusuf, LMC CEO, Hon. Nduka Irabor, LMC COO, Salihu Abubakar, Chairman of Club Owners/Managers Forum, Isaac Danladi and the Executive Secretary of Club Owners Forum, Alloy Chukwuemeka.Also present were Chairman of Abia Warriors FC, Chief Emeka Inyama, Chairman of El-Kanemi Warriors, Alhaji Zana Mohammed Mala, the Chairman of MFM FC, Godwin Enakhena, and a former Chairman of Lobi Stars FC, Dominic Iorfa. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Femi SolajaThe Executive Secretary of Benue State Internal Displaced People (IDP) Emmanuel Antswen, has commended the officials of National League One (NLO) who visited the camp last week to donate sporting equipment to the displaced citizens.He said the visit from the sports family will motivate some of the youths in the camp to start a new life and their future can be a success story like that of Chelsea FC star, Victor Moses and Nura Mohammed. Moses was said to have been a victim of displaced citizens some years ago during the outbreak of religious riot in Southern Kaduna and his potentials in the round leather game exiled him to United Kingdom and today he is a first team player of the both the Super Eagles and FC Chelsea in the English Premiership.Another football star, Nura Mohammed, is also an internally displaced citizen. He was a victim of Boko Haram insurgency in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. He took to plying his skills in football on the streets of Maiduguri before being spotted.He grew up as an orphan in the city having lost both parents before he was six years old. Football was the only succour for him.He enjoyed playing the game with some of his childhood friends.Mr. Antswen urged other public agencies and philanthropists to emulate the unique gesture shown by NLO.“We are more impressed with their visit because aside educational reliefs that we have received in abundant, sports is another way for most of the displaced youths to begin a new life with the cases of Victor Moses and Nura Mohammed as classical examples.“This is a good way for them to starting a new life and you people have shown us that we can use sports to enable them rediscovered their potentials and of all those who had visited and commiserate with us, I think NLO stands unique,” he remarked.The NLO delegation was led by its Chairman, Mohammed Alkali, Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Kawu, and the Chief Operating Officer of the league body, Olushola OgunnowoThe items were received at the stateâ€™s Emergency Agency warehouse,The state agency headed by Special Assistant to Benue State government on Emergency, Emmanuel Antswen, took the delivery of the items.In his response, the NLO chairman, said this is the only little way NLO can contribute to the development of these youths in IDP camps, this will encourage them to pick up their life and believe that all is not lost.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
It was an assemblage of the best ping pongers from Lagos State at the 2013 yearly Asoju Oba Cup at the Molade Okoya Thomas Hall of the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos and the focus of the players was on the brand new Chevrolet car prize for the winner. At the end of a grilling completion, it was Olajide Omotayo that carted away the car prize.Since then, he has not looked back. At the World Junior Championship in Morocco in 2013, Omotayo was Nigeria’s standout player.Against all odds, the 25-year-old defeated his role model, idol and compatriot, Aruna Quadri to win the men’s singles gold at the 2019 African Games in Rabat and therefore breaks into the continent’s top five for the first time after reaching a career-high number 81 in the world rankings on the back of his run at the African Games. From the quarterfinal stage of the competition, Omotayo worked his way to the final, beating two former champions – Egypt’s Ahmed Saleh and Nigeria’s Segun Toriola in the quarterfinal and semifinal stages respectively before setting the stage for an epoch final against Quadri.An elated Omotayo said afterward: “I am very happy winning the African Games. I am so proud of myself because this is a big one for my career and it was a good journey for me from the start of this competition, having won against some of the best players in the continent.”When he made his first international appearance for Nigeria as a cadet at the 2008 International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) African Junior and Cadet Championships in Alexandria, Egypt, little did the youngster knew he was embarking on a journey of no return and more than 10 years after his baptism in Egypt, Omotayo has established himself as an integral member of Nigeria’s senior team to several international tournaments.While his peers all tilted to the direction of football, which was the most popular past time sports for children in Somolu, a suburb of Lagos State, Omotoyo’s love for table tennis could not be compromised. “I also love football but my love for table tennis was far greater and beyond my father’s imagination. It was after my father noticed my interest in the sport and he began to tell me about his exploits in it. Unfortunately, his personal racket was inherited by my sister who started the sport before me,” he recalled.With the interest being fired up by his family, the young Omotayo was also looking up to the exploit of former national junior champion – Lanre Jegede who later introduced him to his first coach.“I was also looking up to Lanre Jegede who was then the national junior champion ad he was living in Somolu too and he took me to Coach Ismail Surmer. It was the support that I got from Jegede and my coach that really motivated me to continue the sport.“Later Jegede moved abroad and whenever he comes to Nigeria, he would devote time to teach me new things in the sport and provide equipment for me as well. At this point, he has made the national team and he was also playing professionally in France. So I could say that Jegede really supported me as a young player,” he added.The 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia; as well as the scintillating outing at the African Championship in Mauritius remains the turning point of Omotayo’s career.“The 2018 Commonwealth Games was one of the greatest experiences for me. It was a cherished silver medal for Nigeria and the most amazing part is that I was actually part of the team and I made an impact. I also got to play alongside Quadri and even played doubles with Toriola.“Also the 2018 African Championship in Mauritius became my best performance so far because a month before the competition, I lost against an Egyptian in front of home fans at Nigeria Open and I felt so bad about it but with the help of my teammates I was able to get back on my feet and look,” he recalled.Now ranked in the top 100 in the world, his dream is to make it to the top 50.“My biggest dream is to get to the top 50 in the world and win African championships as well as African Top 16 Cup. I also want to qualify for the Olympic Games,” the Italy-based ping ponger said.He, however, admitted that the feat achieved by his compatriot –Quadri has been the motivating factor for him.“Aruna Quadri’s feat has been a great motivation to me, so-much-so that sometimes before I sleep I watch some of his matches. Globally, he has placed Nigeria on the world map and I wish that I follow his footstep,” he noted.With the way he is going, the question is not whether he could make it to the world’s top 50, but how soon.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
SUBSCRIBE TO US Starling Marté and Stephen Vogt homered off Chris Paddack in the sixth inning, and the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the San Diego Padres 3-2 on Saturday night.The Padres failed to capitalize on two more home runs by Fernando Tatis Jr., including his second leadoff homer in as many nights. The 21-year-old star shortstop has seven homers this year and has reached base in all 15 games, the longest streak of his career.Tatis’ second homer, off Héctor Rondón in the eighth, pulled the Padres to 3-2.All the excitement of Tatis’ leadoff drive off Merrill Kelly (2-1) disappeared by the fourth inning, when Vogt’s sacrifice fly brought in Marté, who hit a leadoff double and advanced on a groundout.Marté sent a charge through the Diamondbacks dugout in the sixth when he hit a go-ahead homer off the side of the Western Metal Supply Co. Building in the left-field corner. The Diamondbacks’ cheers could be heard all around empty Petco Park.Paddack “started off very well with his changeup but by the time we got to the second time through the lineup were were able to get him and get some good pitches to hit,” Marté said through an interpreter.With two outs, Vogt drove a ball into the home run porch down the right field line to chase Paddack (2-1). They were the first for both Marté and Vogt.Kelly allowed six hits in six innings, struck out four and walked none. Paddack permitted five hits in 5 2/3 innings, struck out six and walked two.Kelly got out of a big jam int he third when the Padres had runners on the corners and no outs. He struck out Trent Grisham and then got Manny Machado to ground into a double play.“Anytime you’ve got first and third and no out you want to go for the punchout,” said Vogt, the catcher. “ … You’re facing the 2-3-4 of that lineup with first and third and nobody out and you’re happy if you get out of there with one run. That’s got to be the mentality. But he didn’t want that. He wanted no runs, and he made the pitches when he needed to to get us out of it.”Archie Bradley pitched the ninth for his third save.Tatis homered to left-center on Kelly’s second pitch. On Friday night, he homered on the first pitch from Luke Weaver.Tatis has eight career leadoff homers, second in franchise history to Will Venable’s 10. It was the third time he hit leadoff homers in consecutive games. The last was exactly a year ago, on Aug. 7 and 8, 2019.“There is nothing special about those dates, but they told me that at the end of the game and I was surprised. It’s crazy how this world works sometimes, and it’s just funny,” Tatis said.He said his leadoff approach is to be “ready for my fastball every time. If they hang it, I just have to put a good swing on it every time. This game is about approach. Their approach to me and my approach to them.”He said he’s “just trying to see the ball a little bit more and trying to be a hitter, instead of just going out there and trying to ambush something. Trying to hit the ball to every part of the park.”He has an extra-base hit in six straight games.Rookie manager Jayce Tingler said he likes having Tatis batting leadoff, “just knowing that he’s going to get the most at-bats on the night right now. He’s got a pretty good approach. With that said, are we looking at some things now? Absolutely. But he’s in a pretty good groove right now and I’d love to see him stay locked in.”TRAINER’S ROOMPadres: Activated 1B Eric Hosmer from the 10-day injured list. He had been sidelined by gastritis. To make room on the roster, the Padres optioned OF Abraham Almonte to their alternate site.ODD E-5Padres third baseman Manny Machado committed an error in shallow right field when he let Vogt’s grounder go under his glove during a shift in the second inning. Machado almost always makes the long jog over to right when the Padres put on a shift against a left-handed hitter.UP NEXTDiamondbacks: LHP Madison Bumgarner (0-2, 7.04 ERA) is scheduled to start Sunday’s series finale, looking for his first win since Aug. 30 vs. the Padres and first on the road since July 28, 2019, at Petco Park. He lost his Diamondbacks debut here on opening day, 7-2.Padres: RHP Dinelson Lamet (1-0, 1.72 ERA) beat the Diamondbacks at home on July 25 in his season debut. He has allowed one earned run in each of his three outings.Image credits: AP Associated Press Television News FOLLOW US LIVE TV Written By COMMENT WATCH US LIVE First Published: 9th August, 2020 10:58 IST Last Updated: 9th August, 2020 10:58 IST Marté, Vogt Homer To Carry Diamondbacks Over Padres 3-2 Starling Marté and Stephen Vogt homered off Chris Paddack in the sixth inning, and the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the San Diego Padres 3-2 on Saturday night