By Greg and Marco AregoniFRANCIS CREEK, Wis. (May 15) – A week after graduating from college, Kelsy Hayes taught her Karl Chevrolet Northern SportMod foes a lesson at 141 Speedway.Hayes led every lap of the Friday feature for her career first local victory. Hayes had her hands full throughout the 20-lapper, first holding off Josh Lambert and Hunter Parsons and then denying Kevin Bethke in the later circuits.Last-corner finishes are always a blast for the fans and for the winning side of finish. The IMCA Xtreme Motorsports Modified finale saw Johnny Whitman edge Shawn Kilgore by a bumper. The local win was the defending champion’s first of the season.Larry Karcz Jr. got back to winning in his second week back in the IMCA Sunoco Stock Cars after an off-season accident. A fog-shortened Mach-1 Sport Compact feature saw Brian Johnson pick up his first win of the season.
(First row – left to right: Mr. Jonathon Maple (Oldenburg Academy), Alex Bamonte, Eli Sporleder, Alex Geers, Gabe Haverkos, India Burris, Shelly Lunsford (Franklin County Community Foundation), Cheryll Obendorff (Genesis Pathways to Success)Oldenburg, In. — The Maverick Challenge, a business planning competition was hosted at Oldenburg Academy on December 14, 2018. Community judges adjudicated the 14 students based on the business plans and products they created for the competition. Oldenburg Academy students participated in the program from Ripley and Franklin County.The Maverick Challenge was started in 2008 by the Columbus Indiana Chamber of Commerce and has been a growing program since. The competition is intended to simulate the real-world process of entrepreneurs soliciting start-up funds from early-stage investors, successful entrepreneurs and community leaders. Oldenburg Academy Assistant Principal Jonathon Maple is the head of the Franklin/Ripley County competition and leads the challenge at the school, “OA is thrilled to participate in the Maverick Challenge – this is a real-world learning experience that provides students with many skills beyond the business plan.” Students had the opportunity to work with business and community mentors as well as experience feedback from professional judges.The winners were announced, and they received cash prizes. Third place winner, which received $100, was Top Smoothie, which is a smoothie truck that will specialize in healthy smoothies in the local areas. Alex Geers, Gabe Haverkos and Eli Sporleder were the three smoothie makers and leaders of the company. Second place winner receiving $200 was India Burris. Burris created “Benevolent Bracelets,” specializing in friendship bracelets that gave back to nonprofit organizations and provided flowers and trees to be planted as part of the gift. The first-place winner received $450 and went to a unique flower pot company that would act as an urn for ashes. This was presented by Alex Bamonte. “The great part about each of these businesses were the personal stories that they tied to their business – they showed passion – I am very proud,” Maple commented. The top two teams will move on to the Spring Maverick Challenge Regional Competition, where nine counties will compete against each other, hosted by Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce. They then have a chance to move on to the state competition at Ball State University, called Innovate WithIN.Genesis Pathways To Success out of Ripley County, Franklin County Community Foundation, Oldenburg Academy and the Batesville Area Chamber of Commerce all sponsor the challenge. “We truly cannot have this without their support and assistance, we are so grateful to live and work in such a supportive community,” Maple commented. Anyone interested in participating in the Maverick Challenge is welcome to email Jonathon Maple.
And his chances of coming through a crunch week unscathed have been dealt a blow with the news that Wayne Rooney will be missing for Saturday’s game against West Ham and United’s crucial match in Wolfsburg three days later. The only way United can guarantee their place in the knockout stages on Tuesday is if they win at the Wolfsburg Arena. As Van Gaal pointed out, he has walked away from clubs of his own accord during his 24-year management career. After falling out with a number of players, Van Gaal walked away from Barcelona during his second spell at the club and he left his role as Ajax technical director following a power struggle with then manager Ronald Koeman. Van Gaal also threatened to walk away from AZ Alkmaar in 2008 after finishing 11th in the Eredivisie, but was persuaded to stay on and led the club to the title the following year. And despite supporter opposition at some of his former clubs, Van Gaal believes he is still highly regarded wherever he has been. “I’m happy that when I’m gone, people are saying nice things about me,” he said. “It’s fantastic that people are saying when I’m gone, ‘Oh, he was very good, he gave structure and was the basis for other things’. But it’s not the most important thing for me. The most important thing for me as a trainer, coach and manager is the chemistry between me and my players and my board. “It should be good and otherwise I would be gone.” Rooney may not be enjoying his best season at United – he has scored just two Premier League goals – but a man of his experience will be missed in Wolfsburg next Tuesday. ”It’s a nasty injury,” the United manager said of Rooney, who has played 499 times for the club. ”He shall not play his 500th game (on Saturday) because he is more injured than I thought. ”His ankle is not good enough and we have to recover that ankle with a lot of strength. He has to do a lot of exercises to make his ankle stronger. He needs more time.” When asked if Rooney would miss the match at Wolfsburg, Van Gaal said: ”Yes, I think so.” United’s squad is looking bare ahead of Saturday’s match at Old Trafford. Marcos Rojo is out for a number of weeks after dislocating his shoulder, while Ander Herrera and Phil Jones have not overcome the hamstring and ankle injuries they suffered at Watford a fortnight ago. Luke Shaw and Antonio Valencia are also sidelined by their long-term injuries. But Van Gaal is not sure whether he will be dipping into the transfer market next month. “We are looking (to sign players) but it is not so easy to buy and in January it’s more difficult,” he said “We are looking but it is not that it is for sure.” Louis van Gaal has vowed to walk away from Manchester United if he loses the dressing room. Press Association Should Van Gaal’s men drop into the Europa League after being handed a relatively easy Champions League group, it will come as a big blow to the Dutchman’s credibility. United may be third in the Premier League, but some supporters are not happy with the often dull style of play under the 64-year-old and rumours persist of unrest within the squad. Van Gaal insists he has a good relationship with his players, but should that change, he will leave his post. “The most important thing is the chemistry between players and staff,” Van Gaal said. “And when I have the feeling that the chemistry is there, I will always work to my utmost best. “But when I have a single feeling that it is not like that, I’m the first coach that quits and I have proved that already with my former clubs and former jobs. “Yes, of course because I always gave my clubs structure and I think structure is very important in a club, but also in a company, everywhere.” When asked about his relationship with his players, Van Gaal said: “It’s good.”
ELEVEN of the 12 athletes who participated at the Flow CARIFTA Games arrived home yesterday afternoon and were greeted in what has been dubbed a ‘heroes’ welcome’, by an enthusiastic party that included Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) president Aubrey Hutson, Director of Sport Christopher Jones, some parents, supporters and several other excited well-wishers.Hooper was the only overseas-based athlete on the team and she returned to the U.S.The athletes were toasted in the VIP Lounge at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport. It was a grand celebration for the team. Police escort was then provided for their journey to Georgetown and a motorcade around the city.Guyana’s first-ever Boys’ Junior 100m gold medallistThe successful Guyana team returned with eight medals from the esteemed meet, including a historic win of the Boys’ Junior 100m gold medal.Overall they collected four gold, one silver and two bronze medals. As a result Guyana finished fifth of 28 countries that participated in the event.The Boys’ Junior 100m gold went to Linden’s Compton Caesar, who also won bronze in the 200m. Of the other medal winners Linden’s Chantoba Bright finished with one gold and a bronze, Anfernee Headecker had one silver, Claudrice McKoy won one gold and a bronze, and Natricia Hooper finished with a gold as well..“What you were able to achieve over the weekend is what we could call the resurrection of Guyana’s place as it relates to athletics,” Jones told the gathering just before he toasted to their success at the airport.However, missing from the greeting delegation was Minister of Sport Nicolette Henry, who was also not present when the team came down to Georgetown.In Georgetown, President Granger hosted the athletes at State House, giving them encouraging words of gratitude for what they have done for Guyana.But it was not just all words. As a thank-you, the President gave each member of the team, officials included, a commemorative 2017 Independence gold coin, which has not yet been released.They’re back! The Guyana team to the 2017 Flow CARIFTA Games at the CJIA yesterdayThe athletes ended the evening as guests at the National Sports Award ceremony at the Savannah Suite of the Pegasus Hotel. The Linden athletes on the team then spent the evening as guests of the Pegasus Hotel.There are expected to return to Linden today, again under Police escort, where other festivities, including a motorcade, await them.
By Simon EvansMANCHESTER, England (Reuters) – Current contracts for players and coaches should be extended until the end of the delayed domestic soccer seasons, according to an internal FIFA document presented to its Coronavirus Working Group.The confidential document, seen by Reuters, also recommends allowing transfer windows to be changed in accordance with new season dates and urges clubs and players to work together to find solutions to salary payments during stoppages.The document is due to be discussed by members of FIFA’s Working Group later on Thursday. No decision on the issues has yet been taken by FIFA.FIFA set up the working group on March 18 and said in a statement that it will “assess the need for amendments or temporary dispensations to the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players’ to protect contracts for both players and clubs and adjusting player registration periods. “This work has already started and will be conducted in consultation with all key stakeholders, including confederations, member associations, clubs, leagues and players,” FIFA added.Most domestic and international football competitions around the world have been suspended due to the pandemic and national team tournaments such as Euro 2020 and the Copa America have been postponed. While domestic leagues are hoping to resume when the threat from the virus has receded, concrete start dates have yet to be fixed.That leaves the issue of expiring player contracts, which are usually timed to finish at the end of a given season, as a potential headache. The key suggestion to the working group in the document seen by Reuters is that “where an agreement is due to expire at the original end date of a season, such expiry be extended until the new end date of the season”.SHIFTING CALENDAR The same approach would apply to deals for next season, with their start date delayed in accordance with the shifting calendar.The risk of some domestic divisions starting and finishing earlier or some national leagues having a different start date to other countries is also tackled in the document.“In case of overlapping seasons and/or registration periods, and unless all parties agree otherwise, priority be given to the former club to complete their season with their original squad, in order to safeguard the integrity of a domestic league championship”. Transfer payments between clubs, scheduled around league start and end dates should also be delayed until the new start date of a season or its first registration period, the document states.The working group will also examine the issue of clubs’ responsibilities to pay their staff when leagues are suspended.The document states that clubs, players and coaches should be encouraged to work together to agree on salary reductions and deferrals. Yet they should consider the alternative, where possible, that agreements between clubs and employees are suspended when teams are not playing or training.It is also recommended that FIFA use its newly-created ‘Fund for Professional Players’ to help ease any difficulties that clubs are facing.Transfer windows, fixed around the end and start of the seasons, will also need to be adjusted to fit in with altered season dates and the document suggests such changes should be allowed, so long as they do not exceed the maximum 16-week period.
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Simon Zebo starts at full-back, with Tommy Bowe and Jared Payne restored to the back line. Paul O’Connell captains the side for the 25th time, and he’s partnered in the second row by Devon Toner. Kick off at Twickenham is at 2.30. Meanwhile Ulster opened up their Pro 12 campaign last night with a bonus point 28-6 win over Ospreys at Kingspan Ravenhill. Connacht edged out the Dragons by 29-points to 23 While Leinster went down 16-9 away to Edinburgh. Tonight, Munster begin their campaign with the visit of Treviso to Irish Independent Park.
In this context, an ad ban as a ‘big but simple’ political reaction is perhaps unsurprising – and not one being resisted much, if at all, by incumbents (tellingly, the CEO of one of the biggest multi-jurisdiction omnichannel businesses is now calling for a pre-watershed ban in the UK, albeit largely aimed at TV football). With this political backdrop, will the EU listen to LeoVegas’s reasoned arguments for better ways to protect players? We doubt it – it is the wrong time and, worse, the wrong audience: the public, press, regulators and politicians need persuading – not the EC executive or the courts, or attempts to overturn broadly supported laws (outside elements of the gambling industry) are likely to lead to even more draconian domestic interventions.Australia: POC and privatisation – Hobson’s choice?Western Australia (pop. 2.6m, 11% total) has announced that it will privatise RWWA (c. AUS$330m revenue; 50+ year lease; almost certainly to Tabcorp – representing a potential 13% increase in wagering revenue) and set a 15% POC tax to commence next year. WA therefore joins SA, NSW, ACT and Victoria in adopting POC legislation, now covering (or about to cover) 97% of Australia by population and suggesting a blended rate of 11% GGR nationally. As has been well reported, this rapid take-up of state taxes comes on top of Federal GST (10%, part recoverable through the supply chain) and product fees (c. 20%; largely horseracing). Australia’s CB tax burden has now reached uncompetitive levels, in our view; likely driving greater levels of economic consolidation than consumer choice would demand, and thereby adding to black market leakage (along with the bans of gaming and in-play), regardless of the fact that that the majority of the taxes do not impact price (though mitigated in part because Australia is such a distinctive market in terms of product: expertise in in-play football, tennis and basketball counts for very little, even in the black market). Is a tax rate of 20-30% GGR equivalent too high? We think that is hard to argue, certainly at the lower end of the range most relevant to retail. There are issues with unrecoverable input VAT, but that is a problem for the gambling industry globally and not Ireland-specific. There are also issues with VAT as gaming tax not being recognised as an industry contribution, but that does not apply to retail (no gaming) and is a structural issue with how VAT/GST is perceived by Treasuries across the world. Was 1% turnover (effectively a c. 10% GGR duty) ‘penal’ – we really struggle with that also, certainly other consumer sectors in Ireland do not pay it, but other sectors do face a consumer price increase of 19% due to VAT, which does not apply to betting – the ‘real economy’ equivalent of a turnover tax (recoverable, but still effectively paid in full by the consumer whenever they buy goods or services). That Irish betting shops paid business taxes as well like all other businesses is hardly remarkable. Share This appears to be a significant move by the WPBSA. Typically, sports bodies will only issue provisional suspensions in such cases when the evidence is particularly damning and / or the individual concerned poses an on-going threat to the integrity of the sport. Jones is a relatively high-profile player, and the suggestion that he has been involved in fixing a match involving other players means that the detail of the case and eventual outcome of the hearing will be eagerly awaited by the sport, and anyone involved in protecting sports betting integrity.Global: M&A Watch – The Stars Group / Sky Betting & Gaming; NEP Group / SIS LIVE; Scientific Games / Don Best; MGM / GVC / UAIC; Penn / Pinnacle.The CMA has announced that it has investigated and cleared the completed acquisition by Stars UK of Sky Betting & Gaming.NEP Group (global technical production outsourcing) has announced the acquisition of SIS LIVE, which will be rebranded as NEP Connect.Scientific Games Corporation has reached agreement to acquire Don Best Corporation and DBS Canada Corporation, with the deal expected to complete in Q4 2018.MGM and GVC have announced a partnership with the United Auburn Indian Community (operator of Thunder Valley Casino Resort) in California.Penn National Gaming has received approval of its acquisition of Pinnacle Entertainment from the Federal Trade Commission, Nevada Gaming Commission, and the Nevada Gaming Control Board. The acquisition is expected to complete in mid-October TVBET passes GLI test for five live games in Malta and Italy August 25, 2020 CT Gaming bolsters Italian profile with The Betting Coach August 27, 2020 Flutter moves to refine merger benefits against 2020 trading realities August 27, 2020 The demand-side danger now is that a once over-extended retail sector will be cut to below the point of demand equilibrium, meaning retail-only bettors will lose access (though a 35% cut in supply would only take Ireland to 10% below the UK in shop density per head of population, while online is an increasingly ubiquitous replacement across demographics). More serious for Irish horseracing would be bookmaker attempts to reduce the effective tax rate by pushing much higher margin non-racing products (eg, football multiples), while also seeking to reduce horseracing content costs. Both are almost inevitable, in our view, but both can be mitigated by producing high quality, competitive horseracing from a well-funded base that Irish punters still love. The best mitigation all round, therefore, is for Irish bookmakers to work with Irish horseracing to ensure that the sector is producing high quality betting product (especially fewer short-priced favourites) as well as a high quality racing product (and, given its importance to the Irish betting market, to use all levers possible to ensure that GB is doing the same). Betting in Ireland has also enjoyed a significant level of long-term tax reductions: betting duty was fully 20% of turnover before 1986, 10% until 1999, 5% until 2002 and 2% until 2006. Tax cuts and economic growth led to a boom in supply as well as demand, with customers getting much more value and the number of betting shops peaking at nearly 1,400 in 2008 (representing massive and unsustainable over-supply, not halcyon days, in our view). As we have noted elsewhere (see blog “Price Wars”), the two key issues with turnover taxes are their price distorting effects (albeit only at the keenest-priced singles markets at 2%) and the fact that they treat different products differently (eg, at 2% turnover: football in-play online = c. 40% GGR tax; SSBT in retail = c. 10% GGR tax). Horseracing, still by far the most popular betting product in Ireland, sits in the middle of these two extremes. Overall, the GGR equivalent of the tax will be c. 20-30%, depending upon product/customer mix, channel (to an extent) and value proposition. The position of Irish bookmakers highlights three things to us, from a policy standpoint. First, railing against a 1% turnover duty – among the lowest in the world by any measure – makes the reasoned opposition to almost any other point look questionable (and therefore easily discounted). Second, expecting the state to support horses and dogs without a coherent alternative (whatever stakeholders’ thoughts on the value or legitimacy of subsidies, or the overall cost of content) simply created a time-bomb, in our view. Third, the lack of an effective gaming duty, despite now being a core (offshore) online product for licensed domestic bookmakers, means that the levers available to policy makers were significantly reduced – making a ‘big but simple’ response almost inevitable. On Tuesday the Irish government announced a doubling of betting duty to 2% of turnover in its 2019 Budget (with exchange duty increasing by two-thirds to 25%) – effective from 1 January 2019. The likelihood of an increase had been well trailed as well has having cross-party support, though it was still treated with shock by the Irish betting sector. PPB announced that the increase would cost a further £20m (€23m) on H217-H118 pro-forma figures, suggesting little in the way of possible mitigation. The Irish Bookmakers Association, already describing the 1% turnover tax as ‘penal’ predicted the end of the independent sector as well as material closures among the chains – estimating 35% of Irish shops closing due to the increase (or c. 300 outlets). Ireland therefore joins the UK, Italy, Germany, Australia and Japan in tightening fiscal-regulatory pressure on traditional forms of mass-market gambling, as well as seeing online as a source of further tax revenue. So how did it come to this in Ireland (arguably more the ‘home of betting’ than anywhere), and is it the end for Irish betting as we know it?Ireland’s fiscal-regulatory set up regarding gambling is largely driven by legacy. First, commercial gaming is not licensed, though it does attract VAT at an effective rate of 18.7% GGR (23/123) – this is paid but largely unrecognised as a sector tax since in theory VAT falls on the consumer (not in practice in gaming as price cannot be effectively adjusted). Second, betting duty has historically been hypothecated to supporting the Irish horseracing and greyhound industries. These command a state subsidy of c. €80m pa (2018), with horseracing getting a 4.7% increase in 2019 to €67.2m (80%, 20% to dogs). The fairly obvious problem with this figure is that the 1% turnover tax, even when applied to online, did not cover the cost (expected to yield c. €55m in 2018) – leaving Irish racing subsidised out of general taxation: hardly a sustainable position. UK: In Parliament – Suicide Unlikely to be PainlessAfter the long summer break and the shorter recess for party conferences, Parliament returned in earnest this week; and the battle on gambling policy was re-joined in both the Commons and the Lords.In case any of us had forgotten the mess that British gambling is in, we were swiftly reminded by the twin scourges of the industry (and Government policy), Carolyn Harris (Lab, Swansea East) and Lord Chadlington (Cons).Predictably, Harris led proceedings with four Parliamentary Questions on Fixed Odds Betting Terminals. She found three different ways to ask when the stake reduction (from £100 to £2) would take effect as well as enquiring about the Government’s assessment of impact on jobs. On a related point, Harris also sought clarification on how much revenue an increase in remote gaming duty would bring in (at 18%, 19% and 20%).In the upper chamber, Lord Chadlington enquired about the merits of establishing a national strategy for the prevention of gambling-related harms, suggesting either that he is unaware of the National Responsible Gambling Strategy (currently nearing the end of its three-year term) or that he doesn’t hold it in very high esteem.Lord Chadlington went on to enquire about the proportion of Police call outs involving gambling-related mental health issues. The Tory peer may have made his name in the stereotypically superficial realm of public relations but his interest in gambling-related harm is both long-lasting and deep. More than any other parliamentarian, Lord Chadlington has got to grips with the subject of gambling-related harm. Over the course of the last eight months, Lord Chadlington has submitted 36 written Parliamentary Questions on gambling policy, covering mental health issues, effects on children, isolation, crime, treatment provision and suicide. It is critical that operators rise to the challenge on the subject of harm if the industry is to avoid getting swept away on a tide of public health concerns; and suicide is likely to be the most potent issue of all. Under current proposals, attempts will soon be made to record gambling involvement in coroner reports on cases of suicide; and GambleAware has recently commissioned a (fairly modest) study of the subject.The pressure group, Gambling with Lives (set up by the bereaved families of gambling-related suicide victims) has quickly established itself as a force within gambling policy discourse and has attracted the attention of national broadcast media. Next month, it will host its inaugural parliamentary reception. The gambling minister, Tracey Crouch (Cons, Chatham & Aylesford) and the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Tom Watson (Lab, West Bromwich East) are believed to have accepted invitations to speak at the event; and it seems likely that they may be joined by Jackie Doyle-Price (Cons, Thurrock) who was this week appointed to the newly created role of Suicide Prevention Minister.The causes of any suicide are often complex and where gambling is involved it is likely to be only part of the story; but in the current political climate, there is little room for complexity and low tolerance for nuance.UK: esports – cutting through the hype…The British Film Industry has released its annual Screen Business Report, which details the contribution of video games and eSports (along with other more obvious screen-based entertainment) to the UK economy (for 2016). While the strong, export-led and well supported video games business generated an impressive GVA of £2.9bn, eSports managed a paltry £18.4m. Certainly, some of this is timing, with material growth possible in the nearly two years that have passed from the basis period. However, it also highlights the fact that the eye-catching figures of prize money and total market estimates are global and tend to be dominated by Far Eastern markets (China especially). eSports might be big globally, but its economic contribution in markets that are easy to access for ‘Western’ businesses tends to be very small – an uncomfortable truth that has direct bearing for most gambling companies looking to monetise the issue. Another point implicit in the data is that the UK video games industry has a lot at stake for what might be a very narrow prize: behind the hype, protecting IP and minimising regulation is likely to be a much greater priority for games publishers than capitalising on the esports market – with gambling almost certainly a step too far for most…Italy: ad ban challenge – right and wrong, or cause and effect?Another example of complaining about a bolting horse is LeoVegas’s decision to take Italy’s ad ban to the EU (or at least attempt to via a complaint to the Commission, which could lead to CJEU scrutiny). LeoVegas’s case is robust on fundamentals, in our view: the EU has recognised advertising as an important component of domestic regulated gambling supply (which it is) and an ad ban has not been demonstrated to be an effective way of protecting players (certainly not blanket and certainly not on its own). However, In an attempt to take a slice of one of the few functioning domestically regulated markets in Continental Europe of scale, a critical mass of operators spent far more than was sustainable in an effort to gain a toe-hold: the result was an overheating market, more marketing visibility than was commercially or politically desirable and a dysfunctional tail that has more in common with the .com universe than an effective regulated market (none of the successful Italian companies relied on advertising – instead, trading off superior localisation, omnichannel capabilities and product). Indeed, this dysfunctionality has been revealed by a material shortfall in Italian prospective online licensees for the new regime: just 80 licences between 70 companies rather than the hoped for c. 120, because the tail has been so inefficient – with applications confirmed before the Dignity Decree was made public. StumbleUpon Related Articles Not dissimilar to Ireland (see above), we see three underlying causes of this dysfunctionality. First, the state monopoly system could not cope with channel shift either commercially or legally (thanks to NT’s ability to provide ‘internal’ competition). Second, the absence of state taxes caused a fiscal and lobbying vacuum that was filled not by excess profits or over-supply (as in some markets), but by the sports bodies (horseracing especially), which became the chief ‘tax’ beneficiary of quasi .com fiscal status. Third, by railing against all forms of levy while a critical mass of Corporate Bookmakers ignored basic corporate and social responsibility, the sector made itself an easy (and easily justified) target. It is easy to blame other stakeholders or politicians ‘who do not understand’ – it is not politicians job to understand – once the politicians are involved it is usually too late for sophistication or even common sense: until the commercial gambling sector learns this lesson, the fiscal-regulatory casualty roster will keep mounting.Australia: gambling advertising – Racing Hits Bum Note in SydneyThe large-boned lady has yet to belt forth, but the days appear to be numbered for betting marketing as we know it in Australia.Plans by Racing New South Wales to use the ‘sails’ of Sydney Opera House as a billboard for the multi-million dollar Everest Horse Race hit the skids as protestors (including the veteran Aussie rocker, Jimmy Barnes) turned out in force to oppose the move.It is difficult to conceive how anyone thought this particular marketing wheeze would end well; but this has been the story for online betting in Australia in recent years. The more hostile the environment has turned, the more operators have courted controversy. Given that there was nothing technically wrong with the planned stunt, the episode serves to highlight the risks to reputation where companies operate in the no-man’s land between the letter of the law and claimed societal expectations.Global: snooker match-fixing – Jones and John suspended pending hearingJamie Jones, who reached the last 16 of the World Championship earlier this year, has been suspended by the WPBSA in connection with a match-fixing investigation. It is alleged that he was involved in a conspiracy to fix a match between David John and Graeme Dott in 2016. John has already been suspended (in May); there is no suggestion of wrongdoing by Dott. Share Regulus Partners, the strategic consultancy focused on international gambling and related industries, takes a look at some key developments for the gambling industry in its ‘Winning Post’ column.Ireland: betting duty – they never had it so good…. Submit
EveryBlueMoon https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/f5/1b/booker-t-3112019-ebm-ftr_16g0jubdi191x1bxf2wb3rrsdv.jpg?t=1855032913&w=500&quality=80 EveryBlueMoon https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/78/ac/bobby-lashley-3112019-ebm-ftr_12qfmuw5h9pn5zygqk5banujo.jpg?t=1854368785&w=500&quality=80 Also appearing will be recording artists Smoke DZA, Westside Gunn and the G4 Boyz. In addition to the live podcast, party, and concert, Mache Custom Kicks and Chalkline Official will be auctioning off a pair of one-of-a-kind custom sneakers and jackets respectively and donating 100% of the proceeds to charity. The evening will end with a concert and peformance by Wale. Doors for the event open at 7 p.m. ET. WaleMania originated in 2015 as an unofficial jump-start to Wrestlemania weekend and has only gotten bigger in stature. Wrestlemania 35 takes on place on Sunday, April 7 from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.Tickets are available on TicketMaster and Sony Hall. Booker T will be a special guest on the live edition of the WrassleRap Podcast, hosted by Emilio Sparks and Kazeem Famuyide. Joining Booker T for the podcast will be current WWE superstars Lio Rush, Samoa Joe, former Ring of Honor champion and cast member of “The Bachelor,” Kenny King, former EVOLVE champion Shane Strickland and former WWE superstar MVP. Sporting News has exclusively learned that WWE star Bobby Lashley will also be joining the festivities. Join DAZN to watch GGG in June and 100+ fight nights a yearThe musician will serve as master of ceremonies for the event that will feature a live podcast, fan festival, party and concert. The guest of honor for the event will be five time World Heavyweight Champion, Booker T. On Monday, WWE revealed that Booker will become the third person and the first-ever African American to be inducted into their Hall of Fame on two occasions. The Texan entered the Hall of Fame as a solo act in 2013 and will be inducted again in 2019 as one half of lauded tag team, Harlem Heat, alongside his brother and tag team partner, Stevie Ray. A staple to kickoff professional wrestling’s biggest weekend of the year is returning. Platinum-Selling recording artist and Grammy-nominated rapper, Wale, will host the fifth annual WaleMania on Thursday, April 4 at Sony Hall in New York City.
View this post on Instagram Missing a key cog on their weakest end of the floor in a must-win game is a tough problem to overcome, and while the mid-season additions of Chalmers and Moreira added depth in the back court and up front, the wing position is now a bit sparse. Cournooh and Felipe Baldi-Rossi help to meet the domestic quota requirements, yet apart from Cournooh’s unsustainability high (and entirely anomalous compared to his career to date) 51% three-point shooting on limited attempts, they are marginal players who cannot much help to defend opposing wing players. Despite his good hustle and athleticism, Cournooh is too small, while the slow-footed Baldi-Rossi has no favourable defensive match-up at all. Bologna, then, can be attacked in individual match-ups just as much as they can attack opponents back.Nevertheless, in must-win individual game scenarios, it is often the performance of an individual player alone that can tip the balance. And with their backcourt pairing of Taylor and Punter, Bologna have two good options for doing so. https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/84/ed/mario-chalmers-bologna_1ijepvqnx41m21okijt7lr06k8.jpg?t=-473554319&w=500&quality=80 In the group stages of the 2019 Basketball Champions League, Virtus Bologna pretty much coasted their way through Group D. They won their first seven contests by a combined 92 points, and finished with a 10-4 record, with the four losses coming via a combined eight points. It could so easily have been a 14-0 sweep.In the round of 16, a tied 74-74 first leg against French side Le Mans was quickly rectified with a dominant 23-point win in the second leg. In that game, Bologna took apart the Le Mans defence, and, unusually for them, recorded 25 assists in the game as a team. https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/f4/95/tony-taylor-bcl_1nm0nlb0w6l0y1fqwndww63jk5.jpg?t=-474054511&w=500&quality=80 .@KPJunior_ has been in his 🎒 all season long! Is he the best player of the #BasketballCL?A post shared by Basketball Champions League (@basketballcl) on Jan 17, 2019 at 1:35am PST Sixth in the competition in scoring, Punter’s 15.5 points per game come in a highly dynamic fashion. Athletic and always attacking, his propensity for hitting tough shots bails out many an otherwise stagnant offensive position, and while he could do more work off the ball himself to alleviate the frequency of this stagnancy, Punter does enough when he is with the ball to carry the team through droughts. Herky-jerky in his style and with the ability to create space via his tight handle, Punter has unlimited outside range, a good mid-range game and the speed to push the ball in transition. When in doubt, Bologna turn to Punter.Alongside him at point guard, meanwhile, Taylor averages a highly efficient 11.4 points per game of his own, to go with a team-high 4.4 assists per game. Shooting better from outside than in any prior season of his career, Taylor does it differently to punter, probing the lane, using plenty of spin moves to get into the paint, dropping floaters and using guile rather than explosion. Unfazed by his relative lack of athleticism and size, Taylor attacks the trees in the paint, drops a hanging mid-ranger when pulling up, and is always getting into the paint. And if he is not getting himself into the paint, he is at least getting the ball there. The third leading scorer is power forward Abath M’Baye, whose 11.0 points per game adds a degree of balance to the team. Throughout his professional career, M’Baye has continued to try and prove himself as being an effective and reliable face-up four man, who can shoot from outside or put the ball on the floor and attack the paint. He is still not entirely convincing when working off the dribble, is more scrappy than smooth, does not have the best hands, and can disrupt an already disjointed offensive rhythm with his propensity to always take a dribble or two after every catch. M’Baye’s physical profile however does see him get to the rim and finish over or through opponents, with a long stride and ability to run the floor that adds a transition element to the front court.Alongside him, Brian Qvale is a smooth roll man and paint finisher, constantly slipping open, getting to the rim, creating a dump-off option and finishing with strength. Seven-foot Dejan Kravic is also an offensive option down low, always willing to give two bumps then turn to a short righty hook. YanickMoreira was brought in during the season to be yet another polished weapon inside the arc, pairing a smooth mid-range shot with some post savvy and delicate touch, while on the perimeter, Italian national team mainstay Pietro Aradori has all the craft and pro moves to be a spot-up, post-up, curling, cutting, screening, close-out driving off-ball offensive threat. Not one of those players looks to pass much – they are finishers rather than creators – yet the plus side to having the lowest assist rates in the competition is having also by far the lowest turnover rates in the competition too. Bologna do not pass or swing the ball much, but they get buckets anyway.Defensively, Bologna rank nearer to the middle of the pack. M’Baye is a willing helper, and Kravic makes for quite the internal presence even if he will not step up to the perimeter, but the team as a whole are prone to gambling and over-relying on playing defence with their hands alone. Punter and Aradori in particular are guilty of this, and while NBA veteran Mario Chalmers has been brought in to provide ball pressure in the back court (as does reserve combo guard David Cournooh), Bologna will have to make do tonight and perhaps hereafter without the disruptive defensive presence of forward Kelvin Martin, out for three weeks due to injury. On the BCL season as a whole, Bologna have the lowest assist percentage of any of the 32 teams to make it to the group stages. The only team near their lowly 49.8% mark was the 51.2% mark of the 3-11 Ludwigsburg; the next lowest amongst any of the teams to qualify for the round of 16 was the 57.4% mark recorded by Greek side PAOK. And of the eight teams doing battle in tonight’s second leg of the quarter finals, only Antwerp (58.9%) also rank under the 60% mark. For comparison’s sake, Iberostar Tenerife have a 70.6% mark.This in itself is not a problem, as there is more than one way to achieve in the game of basketball. To use an NBA comparison, for example, the Houston Rockets are one of the best teams in the league, yet they do so with the third-worst assist rate (54.0%) of any of the 30 NBA teams, because of the brilliance in isolation of James Harden. It does however speak to the way Virtus play. Whereas much of the competition ride their depth and multi-positional shooting, Bologna are by contrast heavily reliant on individual talents, and particularly those of Kevin Punter and Tony Taylor.