CONCACAF unveils rejigged qualifying format for 2022 World Cup

first_imgThe second-round winners will join the top-five sides in the CONCACAF rankings — Mexico, the United States, Costa Rica, Jamaica and Honduras — in the eight-team final round where each team plays 14 matches, home and away, against the other seven.The top three teams from the final round, which will begin in June 2021, will qualify for the World Cup while the fourth-placed team will face an Intercontinental Playoff in June 2022.CONCACAF President Victor Montagliani said the new format has some fail-safes built in it, including rescheduling certain FIFA international match windows, should any novel coronavirus-related hurdles surface.”There are some mechanisms built in where we can pivot if we need to,” he said on a conference call. “But if ’21 starts mimicking 2020 well then I think it’s not just CONCACAF that has to go back to the drawing board it’s the entire football world.”Under the usual format for CONCACAF’S final round of World Cup qualifying, known as the Hex, the top six countries in the region’s rankings battled for three World Cup places while the fourth-placed team advanced to a playoff.  Topics : CONCACAF has unveiled a new qualification format for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after COVID-19 forced a rejig of the usual system, the governing body for soccer in North and Central America and the Caribbean said on Monday.The new format, which will feature all 35 of the region’s members, has been split into three rounds with the first being played in October and November with teams ranked from No. 6 to No. 35 in CONCACAF as of July 16 drawn into six groups of five.The second round, to be played in March 2021, will feature the six group winners from the first phase playing against each other in pre-drawn match-ups to determine which three teams advance to the third and final round.last_img read more

Asian Cup teams will be a lot tougher: Chhetri

first_imgKolkata, June 12: Not willing to read too much into their Intercontinental Cup win, India captain Sunil Chhetri on Tuesday said the 2019 AFC Asian Cup would be ‘at a different level’ with teams like UAE, Bahrain and Thailand.”It was a great preparatory tournament for us. We don’t play teams like Kenya and New Zealand everyday. It was a different challenge. No matter how much we improve, it might still be less,” Chhetri told reporters after receiving the Indian Player of Year award at the Football Players Association of India (FPAI) Awards at the Calcutta Sports Journalists’ Club here.”With due respect to Kenya and New Zealand, the teams that are competing against us in the Asian Cup — like Thailand, Bahrain and UAE — they are at least two-three levels up.”It’s a different level altogether. We all try our best to prepare well and everyone comes to the camp in December fit and injury-free,” the 33-year old added.Chhetri urged his teammates to keep their heads down and continue working hard without getting carried away by the triumph in the four-nation meet in Mumbai.”Where we want to reach is very far. We are just taking small steps. There is no point getting carried away. We should work hard keeping our heads down and try to keep improving ourselves,” the Indian captain said.Chhetri, who netted eight goals in four matches, also played his milestone 100th match in India colours.He also became joint second highest International goal scorer among active players along with Argentine superstar Lionel Messi with his 64th strike. IANSlast_img read more

Photos: What Dodger Stadium looked like on Opening Day 2020-style

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Cody Bellinger homer gives Dodgers their first walkoff win of season Dodgers’ Max Muncy trying to work his way out of slow start The Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Francisco Giants on Thursday, 8-1, on an Opening Day like no other at Dodger Stadium. There were no fans, Clayton Kershaw was scratched, Mookie Betts made his debut and Black Lives Matter was recognized. Here’s what it looked like, photos from Keith Birmingham: How Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling topped the baseball podcast empire center_img Fire danger is on Dave Roberts’ mind as Dodgers head to San Francisco Dodgers hit seven home runs, sweep Colorado Rockies PreviousLos Angeles Dodgers grounds crew waters down the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Enrique Hernandez #14 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates with teammate Mookie Betts #50 after hitting a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Enrique Hernandez #14 of the Los Angeles Dodgers hits a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsMookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers safe at home passed the tag by Tyler Heineman #43 of the San Francisco Giants in the seventh inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Enrique Hernandez #14 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates with teammate Justin Turner #10 after hitting a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers singles against the San Francisco Giants for his first hit as Dodger in the seventh inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers singles against the San Francisco Giants for his first hit as Dodger in the seventh inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates along with teammate Mookie Betts #50 as Enrique Hernandez (not pictured) hits a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers against the San Francisco Giants during a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Justin Turner #10 of the Los Angeles Dodgers tags out #43 of the San Francisco Giants at third base in the fifth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Alex Dickerson #12 of the San Francisco Giants looks on as Enrique Hernandez (not pictured) of the Los Angeles Dodgers hits a two run home run in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Enrique Hernandez #14 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates with teammate Justin Turner #10 after hitting a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Dave Roberts #30 of the Los Angeles Dodgers high fives Mookie Betts #50 after scoring on a fielders choice ground ball by teammate Justin Turner (not pictured) against the San Francisco Giants in the seventh inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)A camera operator looks on during a MLB baseball game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers, left, along with manager Dave Roberts #30, center, and Bench coach Bob Geren #8 look on against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Dave Roberts #30 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks toward the mound to remove starting pitcher Dustin May #85 of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Dave Roberts #30 of the Los Angeles Dodgers walks toward the mound to remove starting pitcher Dustin May (not pictured) of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Dave Roberts #30 of the Los Angeles Dodgers along with Bench coach Bob Geren #8 look on against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers pitchers sit outside and inside prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Justin Turner #10 of the Los Angeles Dodgers is tagged out by Brandon Crawford #35 of the San Francisco Giants at second base in the second inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers singles against the San Francisco Giants for his first hit as Dodger in the seventh inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Dustin May #85 of the Los Angeles Dodgers throws to the plate against the San Francisco Giants in the second inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Mookie Betts #50 of the Los Angeles Dodgers singles against the San Francisco Giants for his first hit as Dodger in the seventh inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Dustin May #85 of the Los Angeles Dodgers throws to the plate against the San Francisco Giants in the second inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)A security stands alone prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers grounds crew takes the Black Lives Matter stencil back toward the dugout prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants kneel during a moment of silence prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants kneel during the National Anthem in a show of support for Black Lives Matter prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Former Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda cutout prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)San Francisco Giants wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirts during batting practice prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)San Francisco Giants wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirts during batting practice prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Alyssa Nakken #92 of the San Francisco Giants during batting practice prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers fans cutouts line the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers fans cutouts line the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers grounds crew waters down the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers takes infield prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers security watches the front gate at Vin Scully way prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers fans cutouts line the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)A empty stadium prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers grounds crew waters down the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Keith Williams sings the National Anthem prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers maintenance sanitizes the escalator prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Los Angeles Dodgers grounds crew waters down the field prior to a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)Enrique Hernandez #14 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates with teammate Mookie Betts #50 after hitting a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)NextShow Caption1 of 43Enrique Hernandez #14 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates with teammate Mookie Betts #50 after hitting a two run home run against the San Francisco Giants in the eighth inning of a MLB baseball game on Opening Day at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Thursday, July 23, 2020. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)ExpandRelated Articleslast_img read more

Coe meets with Russian athletics chief to discuss doping ban

first_imgMOSCOW (AP): IAAF President Sebastian Coe has met with the new head of the Russian athletics federation, which was banned from world track and field in November over doping. The Russian Federation said yesterday that Coe and Dmitry Shlyakhtin met on Friday in Monaco and discussed “Russian athletics and the way to lead it out of the crisis”. “I was pleased to meet with the new president of Russian athletics,” Coe said in comments provided by the International Association of Athletics Federations. “We held a wide-ranging conversation, including, of course, the current position that Russia finds itself in.” An IAAF task force monitoring Russia’s compliance with reform demands is due to visit Russia today and tomorrow. Coe said he thanked (Shlyakhtin) “for his cooperation” with the task force. According to the Russian Federation, Shlyakhtin briefed Coe on Friday about reforms in Russian track and field, saying that they are “an issue that can’t be solved in one day and which requires systematic and painstaking work”. Shlyakhtin, a former coach and regional politician, was elected last month. Russia’s head coach, Yuri Borzakovsky, said he was “sure” that the ban would be lifted in time for the Olympics in August. Russian athletes “are in a cage now, and when they get out, they’ll rip everyone apart”, he added. Russia was suspended from competition, including the Olympics, after a World Anti-Doping Agency commission accused it of operating a systematic and state-sponsored programme of drug use by star athletes.last_img read more

Eco-tourism challenged by constant savannah fires – ranchers

first_imgBy Rupa SeenaraineIn the last few years, there have been continuous calls for eco-tourism to take centre stage in Guyana but the challenges faced by ranchers and eco-lodges in the savannah are far too many, especially the prevalence of fires that are deliberately set by locals.The Waikin RanchThe Waikin Ranch in Lethem, Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice), entered the eco-tourism world just a few months ago but also suffered from one such fire. It has boundaries from the main Rupununi trail, the Ireng River, the Brazil border and the west and Pirara River and covers almost 33,000 acres of mostly rolling savannah plains and is a sanctuary to hundreds of wildlife.Speaking with Guyana Times during an interview, Owner of the Ranch, Victor Pires explained that these fires are deliberately set by residents from neighbouring communities to obtain food. After the flames are doused, they would return to collect the wild animals that were burnt. For the past year, there has been a noticeable increase in these deliberate fires.“What they normally set the fire for is to collect turtles. They will burn the turtles that are on the bush island or wherever and pick up cooked turtles and then they eat,” Pires explained.The aftermath of the savannah fireHe added, “The occurrences of fire are noticeably more. It’s higher this year than previous years. For one particular bush island, this is the third time in one year that it has been set alight. But when you have the heavy wind, the damage is tenfold”.Pires stated that he would have spent millions of dollars to develop the ranch and construct fences around the perimeter. Throughout the years, the wild animals were bashful, venturing into the bushes in the presence of humans. This grew to change after the population increased, resulting in human interactions with rare birds, reptiles and mammals.During the latter part of April, the flames lasted for three days due to high winds and were finally contained through combined efforts of several individuals. Pires stated that hundreds of trees were damaged along with the animals, making it the third fire in the area for the year.“That was a windy day and the fire just spread and got away. It was an inferno and I think we lost about 10 square miles of savannah and a kilometre and a half of fence. What we assume is that someone had to walk hundreds of metres after cross our fence to set this fire. Most of the animals live in the bush wherever there is greenery and protection,” the owner stated.Owner of Waikin Ranch, Victor PiresWhile this is the chief challenge, it is not the only one. The waters are often spiked with poison to extract fish until they are completely exploited.“There is a history of poisoning the water for fish, even when the ponds have already been fished and netted out. When they do these things, it doesn’t recover fast enough for the next season,” Victor explained.He added, “That same Pirara River used to have arapaima, the long-nose pink dolphin and many others because it’s part of the Amazon River but because of the heavy netting, it is not like that anymore. It is not just the Guyanese that does it, the Brazilians do so as well”.Co-owner, Francesca Pires expressed that it is very difficult to maintain these natural resources when they are constantly threatened by human actions. She stated that advocating for it to stop does not help the cause unless efforts are taken.“We want to focus more on conservation. Now that we’ve gone into tourism and we’ve placed so much investment into this ranch and the conservation, it’s just senseless and irresponsible for people to just casually set fires on someone’s lands. I mean, if you aren’t going to add value, desist from doing so,” she expressed.PreventionAccording to the ranchers, the only way to stop these fires is by prevention since fire units are miles away and cannot effectively extinguish such areas of land. It is even more challenging when the flames are influenced by high winds.“We can talk about conservation and we can talk about the green Guyana but we need to start putting some weight to that and not just lip service,” she stated.She stated that constant fires destroy the composition of the land which can result in barrenness in the near future. Adding to that, ranchers are mandated by law to construct fences around their properties but the cost to enclose thousands of acres of land is substantial and they are constantly destroyed during bushfires.It was mentioned that they are seeking to replant the area that was destroyed but this can only be done during the rainy season.Eco-tourism destinationLast March, Guyana was named number one “Best of Eco-tourism” destination in the world. The award was presented to Guyana at the ITB global travel trade fair in Berlin, Germany.The second annual “Best of Top 100” awards is a selection of the finest top 100 destinations selected by a panel of experts who review sustainability success stories submitted by destinations worldwide.The newly created “Best of Eco-tourism” category was added in 2019 and puts Guyana up against very well-known and experienced eco-tourism destinations, such as Sierra Gorda in Mexico, Tmatboey in Cambodia, and the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador.last_img read more

GAA: Glenswilly Thirds looking to add to club’s success

first_imgThe Glenswilly Third team will be looking to emulate their senior side’s this weekend.Manus Kelly’s men face Glenties in the County Final at Letterkenny’s O’Donnell Park on Saturday.The game at O’Donnell Park throws in at 1pm and the referee is Greg McGroary. GAA: Glenswilly Thirds looking to add to club’s success was last modified: October 20th, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Jacks look to reset ahead of home opener

first_imgLooking to get in the win column following a 0-2 start, the Humboldt State football team hosts Western Oregon Saturday at 6 p.m. in the Redwood Bowl in what will be the Lumberjacks’ home opener.HSU has faced a pair of difficult opponents in MSU Texas and Central Washington to begin its 2018 campaign, and head coach Damaro Wheeler believes playing on the team’s home turf will prove pivotal in turning the tide after an inauspicious start.“It’s been a long time coming,” said Wheeler. “We’re …last_img