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Showing posts from March, 2018

England's number one jersey is up for grabs

Just three months out from the World Cup in Russia, England manager Gareth Southgate has admitted his "number one jersey is up for grabs" with four goalkeepers vying to start against Tunisia on June 18. Burnley's Nick Pope has forced himself into Southgate's reckoning with a fine season and is part of a four-strong group of goalkeepers for England's final World Cup warm-up friendlies against the Netherlands on Friday and Italy on March 27 before Southgate names his World Cup squad. Here, AFP Sports looks at the contenders to be England's number one in Russia: He is, by a distance the most experienced of the quartet of 'keepers in Southgate's squad with 74 caps, but his career has been in free fall since England's last major tournament. Hart was at fault for Iceland's winner as the Three Lions crashed out in the last 16 of Euro 2016, as a familiar weakness down to his left was exposed by Kolbeinn Sigthorsson. Despite being ousted from Manchest…

Del Potro hopes to make another big splash in Miami

The stars are finally starting to align for Juan Martin Del Potro who will be seeking his third straight ATP title at the Miami Masters this week. The south Florida showcase got an additional boost on Sunday when Del Potro saved three championship points to hand world number one Roger Federer his first loss of 2018 in a thrilling 6-4, 6-7 (8/10), 7-6 (7/2) victory at the Indian Wells Masters. With the win, combined with injuries to Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, it is now looking like Del Potro is the biggest threat to Federer's rule over the ATP Tour. "It's time to celebrate this, because I made the big effort to win it," Del Potro said. "And then be ready for Miami. It is one of my favourite tournaments on tour. "Many Latino-American people are expecting my game there. That make me feel special. I would like to keep surprising myself and see how far I can go." Del Potro, 29, captured his second ATP title in a row and recorded his bigg…

Spain experimenting with its forwards ahead of WC

Spain entes the final stage of its World Cup preparations with coach Julen Lopetegui experimenting up front. Lopetegui has called up several different forwards since taking over the national squad and has plenty of options to choose from before announcing the final list for Russia in a few months. It won't be an easy decision because Spain has thrived in attack with a deep stock of strikers. The team has outscored opponents 52-10 in the 16 matches played under Lopetegui. The coach will get a chance to have a final look at some of his forwards in the high-profile friendlies against Germany on Friday in Dusseldorf and Argentina on Tuesday in Madrid. Still unbeaten since Lopetegui arrived after the 2016 European Championship, Spain will go to Russia trying to rebound from disappointments in the last two major soccer tournaments - it was eliminated in the group stage of the 2014 World Cup and in the last 16 at Euro 2016. Here's a closer look at the key issues three months before …

Windies reach World Cup with controversial win over Scotland

The West Indies snatched a spot at next year's World Cup by edging to a five-run victory over Scotland on DLS method in Harare on Wednesday. The two-time World Cup winners were bowled out for just 198 batting first, but rain forced an early finish with the game in the balance and Scotland on 125-5 with 14.4 overs remaining. Jason Holder's Windies claimed the penultimate place for the tournament in England and Wales, with Scotland knocked out of contention. "I'm extremely pleased to get through to the World Cup. We've been through a lot in the last two years," said captain Holder. "We had to play to expectation - there was pressure in every game and the guys really put their hands up. I'm really pleased to get over the line but my thoughts go out to Scotland for how they've played in this tournament." With no reserve days in the crucial qualifying tournament, Scotland were left agonisingly short of a massive upset. Former Scotland captains C…

Amazon pips Alphabet as second most valuable US-listed company

azon.com became the second most valuable publicly listed US company, surpassing Google parent Alphabet for the first time. Amazon shares finished up 2.69 per cent at $1,586.51, for a market capitalisation of $768 billion, underscoring Wall Street's confidence in its relentless expansion into cloud computing, groceries and other new businesses. Alphabet lost 0.39 per cent, trimming its stock market value to $762 billion, as Wall Street fretted about regulatory fallout following revelations that a political consulting firm had improperly obtained personal data on 50 million Facebook users. Together, Alphabet and Facebook dominate online advertising. They have previously faced government criticism for how they employ their user data. Amazon's stock has surged 81 per cent over the past year, through Monday, bolstered by scorchingly- fast revenue growth as more shopping moves online and businesses shift their computing operations to the cloud, where Amazon Web Services leads the m…

Blessed to have Deepika in my life: Ranveer Singh

Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh says he shares a relationship of mutual admiration with Deepika Padukone, who he says he is "blessed" to have in his life.

Ranveer was at the News18 Rising India Summit when he was asked about his relationship status with Deepika and about his marriage plans.

Dodging the question, Ranveer, who has never confirmed or denied a relationship with Deepika even as rumours have been around for some years, said: "It is a relationship of mutual admiration... I rate her very highly as an actor, and she doesn't."

"She says, 'You're just a ham'," he quipped, adding that she is "awesome" and that "there's a lot to learn from her as an artiste".

He acknowledged that his "Bajirao Mastani", "Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela" and "Padmaavat" co-star has helped him become a "well-rounded human being" and that he is "blessed to have her in my life".

Ranveer was a…

Stenson and DeChambeau share lead as Woods slips

Sweden's Henrik Stenson birdied three consecutive holes and clung to a share of the lead Friday as Tiger Woods slipped back in the second round of the US PGA Tour Arnold Palmer Invitational. Stenson, the 2017 Rio Olympics runner-up, fired a bogey-free three-under par 69 to stand alongside American Bryson DeChambeau on 11-under 133 after 36 holes at Bay Hill. Woods, a 14-time major winner and eight-time champion at the Orlando course, opened and closed the front nine with bogeys but rallied late to shoot a level-par 72 and stand seven shots back on 140 after 36 holes as he works to find consistent top form ahead of next month's Masters. Stenson, whose only victory since his lone major title came last year at Greensboro, began on the back nine and saved pars from seven feet at the par-five 16th and 15 feet at the par-three 17th after finding bunkers off the tee. He also sank a nervy five-footer for par at 18 after blasting out of a greenside bunker. "Today wasn't as go…

It's not oil but horses that put Dubai on the map

Who knew that a night spent sleeping at the beach, curled up with his horse, would lead a future ruler to create an empire that brings a fairy tale to life? HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, grew up racing horses with his friends at the Jumeirah Beach. For his very first race, he chose a horse that he tended back to form. The time spent around horses has led him to become an endurance racer to reckon with as well as create what is one of the richest horse races in the world with a prize pool of $30 million (Dh110 million). He won his first race with his filly Hatta at Brighton in 1977. He's been the captain of the national team, won European Championships in 1999, 2001, and 2003, and been instrumental in getting endurance racing to the Olympics. He's also won the 160 km European Endurance Race in Italy in 2012. In the time between his races and the running of a dynamic country, he took racing from a loca…

Mohammed, Hamdan attend endurance ride

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, attended the final race of the 10th Dubai Crown Prince Endurance Festival organised by the Dubai Equestrian Club in collaboration with the Emirates Equestrian and Racing Federation (UREEF) at the Dubai International Endurance City. Held under the supervision of the International Federation for Equestrian Sports (FEI), the120 - kilometre Dubai Crown Prince Endurance Cup saw the participation of local and international riders vying to claim the title. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai; Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance; and Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, attended the race. Riding 'Dhahi', Saeed Mahmoud Al Khiyari won the hotly contested 120 km Dubai Crown Prince Endurance Cup.

Salah closing in on Messi comparisons, says Klopp

Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah is on his way to reaching the elite level of Lionel Messi but has no interest in being compared to the prodigious Barcelona striker, manager Juergen Klopp has said. Salah, 25, struck four goals in Liverpool's 5-0 rout of Watford that lifted them back into third place in the Premier League ."Each game we try to win the three points, but every game I want to score and help the team," said Salah. The Egypt international moved to 28 league goals, four goals clear of Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane in the race for the Golden Boot. He has 36 in all competitions this season, the most by a Liverpool player in a debut campaign for the club. Asked about the similarities in Salah and Messi's style of play, Klopp said: "Mo is on the way, that's good. I don't think that Mo or anybody else wants to be compared with Lionel Messi. He (Messi) has been doing what he's been doing for what feels like 20 years or so... the last playe…

Hyperloop to ease UAE traffic congestions

Spending upwards of two hours stuck in traffic during rush hours may soon be a thing of the past, once the UAE's first Hyperloop enters the picture. Because of its incredible throughput, the Hyperloop would transport approximately 3,400 people an hour, 128,000 people a day and 24 million people a year, says Bibop Gresta, chairman and co-founder of Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HyperloopTT). "Its capacity can take out a lot of the traffic away from the streets, reducing the traffic problem in the region," he told Khaleej Times. "Again, the dynamics are different depending on the population density in each city, but we are flexible in scaling the transportation technology to accommodate specific needs... it is an intermodal solution, that combined with the rest of the transportation infrastructure, can give an effective and definitive solution for the traffic in the world's greatest cities." The company is focused on partnering with local and region…

Apple could unveil cheaper iPad, MacBook (and new iPhone SE?) on March 27

Apple is leaving the Bay Area to go back to school in the Windy City. The tech giant on Friday (Saturday in the UAE) sent out media invites for an event in Chicago, and, as usual, was cryptic about it. It features the Apple logo drawn in an artful way, with 'Let's take a field trip' written below it. Apple usually launches its products on its own turf in San Francisco. The last time it held an event in Chicago was in 1992, when it unveiled one of the first personal digital assistants, the Newton. Some clues from the invitation have led to wide expectations that Apple will be unveiling a new, iPad - a cheaper one at that, which is in line with the company's push into the education sector and would be aimed at challenging Google's lead in classrooms with its Chromebook. And it makes sense that the event will be held in Chicago's Lane Tech College Prep High School: Apple in December forged a deal with the city's government to teach its nearly 500,000 students…

THE SHE FACTOR: Adding goodness to your shopping cart

The UAE is at the forefront of women empowerment in the region offering secure environment with plenty of opportunity for growth, says Geeta Pahlajani, an entrepreneur and founder of Goodness Cart. Goodness Cart, a new e-commerce platform caters for all of health and wellness lifestyle needs in the UAE. It brings an entirely new concept of an online marketplace platform. For the consumer, it provides access to multiple suppliers and brands under one virtual roof, offering access to the best-quality products across a range of categories including natural and organic fresh produce, natural beauty, homecare and baby and child products all sourced from both local and international brands. For retailers/manufacturers/producers/consultants, Goodness Cart offers low-cost, low-risk market expansion opportunities via e-commerce for small independents as well as greater exposure and a new channel to market for established organisations. "Goodness Cart was initially conceptualised in 2015 …

Dubai's ABB bids for Dh2.57B energy projects in the UAE

Dubai-based company ABB, which produces electrification, robotics and motion, industrial automation and power grids, is bidding for nearly $700 million (Dh2.57 billion) worth of power projects in the UAE, a senior official said. "We are bidding for a 132kv substation of the Dewa [Dubai Electricity and Water Authority]. We are also bidding for all construction projects and developers such as solar plant with Acwa. We are also quoting for Adnoc [Abu Dhabi National Oil Co] oil and gas for their expansion projects. Plus, we are also bidding for different Adwea [Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority] projects. So overall, we are pitching for more than $600 million to $700 million of projects here," said Mostafa Al Guezeri, managing director of ABB. The company has also been involved in a 400KV substation at the Mohammed bin Rashid Solar Park. Last month, it was also awarded 400KV substations for Shams projects from the Dewa. Regionally, the company also operates in Bahrain, …

WALL STREET WEEK AHEAD: Will tech love affair end in tears?

Outsized returns delivered by Amazon.com, Netflix and other heavyweight technology stocks have made them heroes on Wall Street, but some strategists warn that investors' reliance on them exacerbates the risk of a steep downturn. Amazon's 35 per cent surge in 2018 has pushed its market capitalisation up to $770 billion, equivalent to 3 per cent of the S&P 500 and close behind Apple's nearly 4 per cent share of the index. Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet have grown their collective market value by more than 40 per cent in the past year to $3 trillion, and they now account for a quarter of the Nasdaq Composite Index. Technology stocks have been widely viewed in recent months as a "crowded trade," a situation where most investors have the same opinion, increasing the potential for a volatile selloff if sentiment changes. "It's a big momentum trade, investors don't care if they're paying 15 or 20 or even 50 times earnin…

Facebook critics want probe on data mess

Facebook faced new calls for regulation from within US Congress and was hit with questions about personal data safeguards after reports a political consultant gained inappropriate access to 50 million users' data starting in 2014. Facebook disclosed the issue in a blog post on Friday, hours before media reports that conservative-leaning Cambridge Analytica, a data company known for its work on Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, was given access to the data and may not have deleted it. The scrutiny presented a new threat to Facebook's reputation, which was already under attack over Russians' alleged use of Facebook tools to sway American voters before and after the 2016 US elections. "It's clear these platforms can't police themselves," Democratic US Senator Amy Klobuchar tweeted. "They say 'trust us.' Mark Zuckerberg needs to testify before Senate Judiciary," she added, referring to Facebook's CEO and a committee she sit…

Oracle picks Maharashtra for Smart City digital initiative

Announcing its first move on the Indian government's Smart City project, the $37 billion tech giant Oracle Corp has chosen Maharashtra to accelerate the states digital transformation and set up a Centre for Excellence there. Towards this, Oracle Global CEO Safra Catz has signed a pact with Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on the sidelines of the onging Oracle OpenWorld conference here, it was announced on Wednesday. According to the pact, Oracle will create a cloud-based Centre of Excellence (CoE) to help accelerate Maharashtra's 'Smart City' programme and modernise technology solutions. Catz said the project is the most expansive and biggest of its kind. It will be likely replicated across the country, if successful, she said. However, refusing to give its financial details, she also said the investment will be completely scalable because the focus will be to use the cloud technology for immediate uptake. "We are thrilled to further our commitment…

Deal: Microsoft and Adobe in surprise cloud partnership

Microsoft and Adobe on Monday announced a strategic partnership, focusing on enhancing customer experience and relationship, mainly using both firms' cloud computing service.

The surprise announcement, made at the Microsoft Ignite conference in Atlanta, brings two of the world's biggest technology companies uniting their resources; aside from the customer end, the move is expected to significantly boost the duo's brands.

The deal, which will focus on using Microsoft's Azure and Dynamics 365 and Adobe's Marketing Cloud, would help firms "embrace digital transformation and deliver compelling, personalised relationships through every phase of their customer relationships", a e-mailed statement from Microsoft said.

"Business leaders in every industry are focused on how to better engage their digital customers, wherever they are," Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in the same Press release.

He touted the potential of the move, uniting the firms on bot…

Canada mulls tax on Internet giants

The Canadian government is looking at how to regulate and tax Internet giants such as Google, Facebook and Netflix, as it moves to improve protections for its cultural sector, an official said. "The government of Canada recognises that large Internet companies are acting outside regulatory frameworks and may be a threat to our culture," Simon Ross, a spokesman for Heritage Minister Melanie Joly, told AFP. It will therefore be necessary to update Canada's 1991 Broadcasting Act to take into account the new digital landscape, he said. A review process will be started soon, Ross added. Ottawa initially refused to apply a so-called "Netflix tax" on foreign-based Internet companies offering services and selling online advertising in Canada, saying it didn't want those costs passed on to Canadians. But that position provoked a backlash in the cultural sector that relies in part on government funding, and from Canadian broadcasters that must pay into the arts …

AI more dangerous than nukes, says Musk

Calling artificial intelligence more dangerous than nuclear warheads, Tesla and SpaceX boss Elon Musk said there needs to be a regulatory body overseeing the development of super intelligence, CNBC reported. "I am really quite close, I am very close, to the cutting edge in AI and it scares the hell out of me," the billionaire tech entrepreneur told the South by Southwest tech conference in Austin, Texas. "It's capable of vastly more than almost anyone knows and the rate of improvement is exponential." Some have called his tough talk fear-mongering. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said Musk's doomsday AI scenarios are unnecessary and "pretty irresponsible". And Harvard professor Steven Pinker also recently criticised Musk's tactics. Musk, however, is resolute, calling those who push against his warnings fools at the tech conference, CNBC reported. "The biggest issue I see with so-called AI experts is that they think they know more than…