Standing tall: Paul Francis shares his story of courage

first_imgDania Bogle, Senior Gleaner Writer FANS OF athletics may have heard the name Paul Francis as the master strategist behind Jamaica’s gold medal in the women’s 4x400m at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in Beijing, last August. Others know him as the younger brother of MVP Track and Field Club head coach, Stephen Francis and one of the club’s founders. Athletes at the University of Technology (UTech) know Francis as head coach of the women’s track team and for four years between 2010 and 2014 their classmate. Francis was 44 years old when he decided to go back to university. He had started in the 1980s at the University of the West Indies and dropped out after a year. He was accepted to do a degree in Business Administration at UTech in 2005 and opted out; but on February 2, 2010, what started out as a minor car accident, would change Francis’ life forever. While travelling on Highway 2000, he had a minor accident and when he left the vehicle to inspect the damage, was hit by a passing car which crushed his right leg. That exacerbated an injury Francis had suffered in 2008. “One day after training, I was fooling around on the track with a football and twisted my ankle and it just …broke. So I was walking around with a noticeable limp from two years before,” Francis told The Gleaner. After three weeks in hospital he was told his leg had developed an infection, and would have to be amputated. Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association president, Dr Warren Blake, one of the island’s most noted orthopaedic surgeons, conducted the operation. “Of course, I would have felt a deep remorse on hearing that I would have had to lose half of one of my legs and like any normal human being, I buss a bawl,” he shared. NO LOOKING BACK “After that bawl, never again have I looked back and regretted or thought that I am disadvantaged because I have a disability.” Francis, an IAAF Level IV certified sprint and hurdles coach, and Area Technical Official, was fitted with a prosthetic leg that August. The amputation made him reevaluate his position. “I did not see myself being able to demonstrate a high knee drill or a start to any athlete, and I thought that would somehow reduce my premium as a coach, and I thought it would be an excellent idea to ensure I try to expand my knowledge in terms of the administration of the sport because sport is my passion. I didn’t want to be somebody who had to sit down and rely on people,” he said. In 2010, a long-time dream of local track and field icon Dennis Johnson, who was for many years head of sports at UTech, the Bachelor of Science in Sport Science would come to fruition. “So as soon as I heard it was on, I jumped at it,” Francis, who turns 50 in April, said. There were days when Francis, who graduated with a degree in Sports Management, would go to classes on crutches as his prosthetic limb caused soreness. “Each day, I got a little stronger in terms of how to manage my own body. I had years of coaching experience and every sporting event doesn’t need only players, but it also needs strategists who are going to guide or coach the team. So oftentimes I played that role but at no point did I refuse myself from any practical activity because of my disability. I took part in every one of them,” he said. Being a full-time coach and student can be difficult, but Francis said difficulty is relative. “I thought I was blessed. It was simply a thing of managing your time. I have always considered myself a realist. In most situations I prefer to see a bottle as half full rather than half empty, and one of my most dominant philosophies is that no matter how bad a situation you think you are in there are many who are worse and they have survived it, therefore you can too.” Francis works very closely with his brother, and while he is the more celebrated, has nothing but great love and respect for the job his brother is doing. FIRST ATHLETE He was Stephen’s first athlete as he coached him in the discus while he was at Wolmer’s. “I have zero reservation about the kudos and recognition Stephen gets. I am his biggest admirer. He is bright. He is working at his passion and he uses all his available resources to ensure that he keeps improving at what he does. I feel a bit ashamed sometimes when people big me up because I think that he deserves most or all of the praise,” he said. Since graduating, Francis has started his own events planning business and is enthusiastic about his future. “You can either choose to lie down and die or you can choose to get up and live. I chose to live,” he said.last_img read more

Bracket busted: 10 of top 13 women’s seeds gone at US Open

first_imgAngelique Kerber, of Germany, reacts against Dominika Cibulkova, of Slovakia, during the third round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, in New York. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)NEW YORK — Dickie V found a totally awesome PTP’er in the U.S Open’s women’s bracket.His pick is on point — Madison Keys knows how to make a Final Four.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Only No. 3 seed and defending champion Sloane Stephens remains among the top six women.On Saturday alone, No. 6 Caroline Garcia, No. 10 Jelena Ostapenko and No. 13 Kiki Bertens were eliminated, too.The early stunners seem to clear the field for No. 17 seed — oh, and six-time champion — Serena Williams to move in on another title.“I think she’s playing really good tennis,” Keys said.Maybe the losses are a case — or curse — of the Louis Armstrong blues.Halep, Wozniacki, Kerber and Kvitova were all beaten at the new Louis Armstrong Stadium. Two-time major champion Garbine Muguruza lost there, too, in the second round.The 14th-seeded Keys has stuck around in a field smacked with upsets.Keys whiffed on an overhead, fought a case of first-set jitters and never found a groove with her backhand. She rallied after dropping the first set and the U.S. Open finalist from a year ago beat Aleksandra Krunic 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 at Arthur Ashe Stadium on Saturday.Keys plays Cibulkova in the quarters.“I think she’s super feisty,” Keys said. Keys lost to Stephens in the final last year and lost to her again this year in the French Open semis. But Keys has been plagued with various injuries (right wrist and ribs, notably) most of the season and slipped out of the top 10 in the rankings.Krunic beat Keys four years ago at Ashe and the Serb seemed poised to do it again when she took the first set. Keys rebounded to win 12 of the last 15 games and thanked the pro-American fans for pulling her through into the round of 16.“The biggest confidence boost for me has been being able to get myself back into those matches and knowing that in a situation like today, if I make some adjustments and stay calm, then I can usually figure things out,” Keys said.Keys’ parents are both attorneys and she picked up some jargon — from a different kind of court — when she explained how she fanned on an overhead.“In my defense,” she said, laughing, “the sun was right there. The ball went right there and I couldn’t see it. You know, it happens. At least it doesn’t happen to everyone else on national television.”She pleaded the fifth when asked how having the top seeds out of the tourney affects her and potentially makes for an easier road back to the final. Like everyone else who watched, she couldn’t ignore, though, the dominance by Williams over sister Venus Williams on Friday night. Serena equaled her most-lopsided victory against her sister with a 6-1, 6-2 rout.“I think she played really well. You obviously have to play well to beat Venus,” Keys said.The 23-year-old Keys joined Stephens, Venus Williams and CoCo Vandeweghe for an all-American semifinals at last year’s Open. Keys’ run to the French Open semifinals showed an overall development of her game. Her big-hitting style makes her more of a natural fit on hard courts and there’s no reason she couldn’t have another long stay in New York.“Coming into here, I was, like, ‘Oh, last time I was in here, I lost.’ That’s fun,” Keys said, smiling. “It’s fine. I’m not torn up about it.” MOST READ Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college “Madison’s backhand is lethal !” Vitale tweeted Saturday from the Open . “Her physical skills r #awesomebaby.”Keys was one of the fortunate favorites in the Open, as she survived-and-advanced to the Sweet 16.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSTim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’But much like Vitale would say in a March stuffed with busted brackets, the women’s side is loaded with upset specials.Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber was eliminated, leaving none of this year’s Grand Slam winners left in the U.S. Open. And No. 5 Petra Kvitova lost later, meaning only three of the top 13 women’s seeds remain in the field. And it’s still just Week 1 in Flushing Meadows. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Palace OKs total deployment ban on Kuwait OFWs ‘High crimes and misdemeanors’: Trump impeachment trial begins View comments It’s similar to the way things went at the last major tournament: For the first time in Wimbledon history, none of the top five women’s seeds reached the round of 16. And only one of the top 10 made it to the second week there.On Saturday in New York, No. 29 seed Dominika Cibulkova rallied Saturday to beat the fourth-seeded Kerber 3-6, 6-3, 6-3. No. 26 Aryna Sabalenka beat Kvitova 7-5, 6-1 at night.“I was not able actually to play my best tennis in the important moment,” Kerber said.Join the club.Top-ranked Simona Halep, the French Open champion, was eliminated in the first round. Australian Open champion Caroline Wozniacki, the No. 2 seed, fell in the second.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Peza offers relief to ecozone firms Gov’t in no rush to rescue animals in Taal Judy Ann’s 1st project for 2020 is giving her a ‘stomachache’ Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Weather woes hit college football, stadiums cleared Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. DepEd’s Taal challenge: 30K students displacedlast_img read more

Man City clinch first January signing with capture of Australian midfielder

first_img Anthony Caceres Manchester City have made their first January signing with the capture of midfielder Anthony Caceres from Central Coast Mariners for an undisclosed fee.The Australian club announced on Friday morning that a fee had been agreed with City for the 23-year-old and a club spokesman confirmed the completion of the deal to Press Association Sport.Caceres is not seen as a player who could challenge for a first-team spot any time soon and he could well be loaned out.Mariners head coach Tony Walmsley signed Caceres in 2011, and he told the club website: “We need to celebrate when players at the Central Coast Mariners are sold to bigger clubs. It’s our charter. It’s our intent.“When I brought Anthony Caceres to the Mariners his potential was obvious.“This move demonstrates how far Anthony has progressed and symbolises how giving youth a chance works for both the Central Coast Mariners and young aspirational footballers.”An obvious destination for Caceres would be City’s A-League sister club Melbourne City.The league does not allow clubs to buy players from each other, but a loan from Manchester City would be allowed.Melbourne boss John van’t Schip was coy on any loan move, with the Dutchman quoted in the Australian press saying: “Manchester City is getting him in. More or less, that’s it.“We can’t comment on (a potential loan move) but of course everybody knows he’s a good player, he’s one of the better players in the A-League. So we’ll just have to see.” 1last_img read more

WOMAN WHO ANSWERED HER PHONE WHILE DRIVING ON BIRTHDAY FINED €100

first_imgA woman who answered her phone while driving on her birthday has been fined €100.Candice Devine (27) of 11 Cill Na Greinne, appeared at Letterkenny District Court.Her father spoke on her behalf as he said she was very nervous. He revealed the date, April 29th, was her birthday and she wrongly answered the phone.He asked Judge Denis McLaughlin to be as lenient as he could.However the Judge said there were ear pieces which could be bought for as little as €10 and she would not have to use her phone while driving.WOMAN WHO ANSWERED HER PHONE WHILE DRIVING ON BIRTHDAY FINED €100 was last modified: December 2nd, 2013 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) Tags:Candice DevineletterkennyMOBILE PHONElast_img read more

3rd ‘X-Men’ keeps superheroic appeal

first_img“X-Men” also grossed approximately $80 million in foreign markets Friday through Sunday. Monday estimates were not available. “This is one of those movies where expectations were high, but for anyone to think it would break these records and perform so incredibly well, that was not expected,” said box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian, president of Exhibitor Relations Co. Thanks largely to “X-Men” and popular holdovers “The Da Vinci Code” and “Over the Hedge,” the projected performance of the top 12 films in the marketplace adds up to $228.6 million, easily ahead of the same weekend a year ago when the total was $225.5 million. The Memorial Day weekend record still belongs to 2004 with $238.7 million in revenue. “Da Vinci” finished in second place with an estimated $43 million in ticket sales. The religious thriller has taken in $145.5 million to date domestically, according to Sony Pictures Entertainment, which released the film. “When you consider how we opened, it’s a terrific hold, and we couldn’t be happier,” said Rory Bruer, Sony’s president of domestic distribution. “I think it’s a good weekend for everyone.” “Da Vinci” also added $92 million in foreign markets over the four days and has now taken in $320 million internationally. The film directed by Ron Howard and starring Tom Hanks now has a worldwide total of $465 million. “Hedge,” a DreamWorks Animation title, finished in third place over the weekend with a solid estimated four-day gross of $35.3 million. The comedy has grossed $84.4 million in its first 11 days in theaters. The Tom Cruise action-adventure “Mission: Impossible III” took fourth place in its fourth weekend in theaters, with estimated ticket sales of $8.6 million. The film has grossed $115.8 million domestically to date. Rounding out the top five was the Warner Bros. disaster flick “Poseidon,” which took in an estimated $7 million and has earned a disappointing $46.6 million to date. The film has not yet opened internationally. greg.hernandez@dailynews.com (818)713-3758 TOP MOVIES Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Monday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Exhibitor Relations. Final figures will be released today. 1. “X-Men: The Last Stand,” $120.1 million. 2. “The Da Vinci Code,” 43 million. 3. “Over the Hedge,” $35.3 million 4. “Mission: Impossible III,” $8.6 million. 5. “Poseidon,” $7 million. 6. “RV,” $5.3 million 7. “See No Evil,” $3.2 million 8. “Just My Luck,” $2.3 million. 9. “United 93,” $1.1 million. 10. “An American Haunting,” $936,680. – Associated Press160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! By attracting audiences of all ages, “X-Men: The Last Stand” grossed an astounding $120 million in its first four days and propelled the movie industry to its second-biggest Memorial Day weekend in history, according to studio estimates released Monday. “X-Men,” the third installment of a series based on the popular Marvel Comics franchise, had already set a Memorial Day weekend opening record by Sunday with its $103 million three-day take. The 20th Century Fox release added impressively to its new record with projected ticket sales of $17 million on Monday. Final numbers will be released today. “To be in this rarified atmosphere is extraordinary,” said an elated Bruce Snyder, Fox’s president of distribution. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2The film, directed by Brett Ratner, stars Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Ian McKellen and others as either superhero or evil mutants. The film succeeded at the box office in much the same way “Spider-Man” did four summers ago by attracting an audience that was fairly evenly divided among all demographics – males and females; young, middle-age and old. “Spider-Man” had a record three-day opening of $114.8 million. Fox had been hoping at least to match the $86 million opening of “X2” in May 2003 and did that in the first three days, driven by an extraordinary opening-day gross of $45.5 million. Of the first-day total, $5.9 million came from midnight showings on Thursday. “It was much more of a fan-based audience Thursday night and Friday. Then on Saturday and Sunday, it became everybody’s movie – from families to seniors,” Snyder said. “I think `X-Men’ has this quality about it that everyone identifies with – being an outsider, being unique.” In all, “X-Men” claimed the following records during its first four days in theaters: biggest Memorial Day weekend opener; biggest Friday gross and second-biggest single-day gross ($45.5 million); fourth-largest three-day opening ($103 million); and biggest opening of 2006 to date. last_img

John Terry ‘ready for the next chapter’ amid links with Aston Villa job

first_img John Terry has been linked with a return to Aston Villa – as manager “I have ambitions and aspirations to go and be a coach or a manager in the long run but I am taking time to reflect, which is the most important thing for me after recently coming to the decision to retire.“I am ready for the next chapter in my life, and hopefully it will bring at least half the success I had as a player.“I’m excited, you’re a long time retired and I am ready for the next step – whatever that may be.” Terry has been mentioned as a successor to Steve Bruce after his former boss was sacked by Villa last week.He has also been mooted as a potential assistant boss to first Thierry Henry and now Rui Faria – Jose Mourinho’s long-term number two, who Terry worked under during his time at Chelsea.The former centre-half did not want to discuss his link with the Villa job when quizzed on Wednesday.But, he did speak about his wider managerial ambitions during an interview with Sky Sports News.“It’s an ambition of mine and has been for a long time,” said Terry, who has seen former England team-mates Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard take high profile managerial jobs in recent months. 2 2 Terry has played under some of football’s top managers over his career John Terry has insisted he is ‘ready for the next chapter’ of his career as a manager as the Chelsea legend continues to be linked with the vacant Aston Villa job.The 37-year-old announced he had officially retired as a player at the weekend, finishing his glittering career last season as captain of the Villa.last_img read more

Crabs fend off late rally, down B52s

first_imgDamian Henderson’s hot streak at the plate continued Wednesday night as his first-inning grand slam put the Humboldt Crabs ahead 5-0 en route to a 12-9 win over the visiting Humboldt B52s, at the Arcata Ball Park.The Crabs followed their explosive first inning with a single run in the second and three more in the third — one of which came via an RBI single from Kyle Knell and the other two, off of B52s errors — to take a 9-1 lead entering the fourth.The B52s made a push to get back into the …last_img

Scientists Shake Their Fists at God

first_imgSome scientists want to dictate commandments back to their Maker.“Thou shalt not tell us how to behave any more” shouts a headline on New Scientist toward God. Of course, to the secular evolutionary atheists at science news sites, all gods are created equal. They are endowed by their human creators with certain unsavory mights, among them strife, arbitrariness and the pursuit of punishment.We already know that humans don’t need religion to be moral. Now it turns out that religious moralising is an evolutionary response to societal upheavals 2500 years ago.Religion won’t disappear. But the research suggests the great moralising religions are doomed to ebb away, as they already are in the more affluent parts of the world. Some people worry that without moral guidance, anarchy will ensue. They need not worry: we will do good without it.The boastful statement begs many questions. What is moral? On what basis do they understand the origin of morality? On what basis can they predict the future behavior of humans? Evolutionists didn’t do too well predicting morality in Darwin’s century, with its two world wars and atheist-inspired democides of 148 million people (11/30/05). According to CMI, Stalin credited Darwin with his hefty share in these crimes against humanity:Reading Darwin had an enormous impact on me. It corroborated my defiance of God and inspired me to systematically break all the Ten Commandments, which I now realized were only chains. Though I had stolen and lied before, I now stole and lied with a higher purpose—freedom of self. And the effects on my political philosophy were equally lasting. Historians of the future may even conclude that Darwinism + Leninism = Stalinism.Before they get too cocky, the editors at New Scientist should consider the influence of religion on their own theory. Dr. Aldemaro Romero questions the reductionism of the “Modern Synthesis” (neo-Darwinism). On PhysOrg, he cautions fellow evolutionists, who follow a limited focus on natural selection, that they echo the predestination of some religions. He warns, “if they do not understand the historical roots and the philosophical framework of their research, they are doomed at presenting only a very partial (and many times biased) view of nature.” The headline is even broader: “Influence of religion and predestination on evolution and scientific thinking.”There’s nothing new under the sun. The New Scientist attitude is the same old grumbling of the mixed multitude described in the Pentateuch. Though they had witnessed all of God’s powerful wonders to rescue them and meet their needs, they refused to obey Him, and would not have his chosen leader Moses to tell them what to do. Don’t you think Korah, Dathan and Abiram promoted themselves as the academic intelligentsia of their day? Don’t you think they fancied themselves as the superior thinkers? Don’t you imagine they presented their offerings as more respectable than those demanded by the revealed Law? The doom of today’s boasters will be no less swift and final.(Visited 62 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Pro Kabaddi 2019 HIGHLIGHTS, Jaipur Pink Panthers vs Bengaluru Bulls in New Delhi: Bengaluru Beat Jaipur 41-30

first_imgAfter winning six of their first seven games, Jaipur Pink Panthers have suffered a slight slump in form, losing two of their last three matches. However, the margin of defeat in both losses was seven points or fewer, meaning that Jaipur Pink Panthers have come out of a game empty-handed just once so far this season.Skipper and leading point-scorer Deepak Niwas Hooda, too, has struggled to impress in his past two outings, scoring a total of just four points. While the slight drop in form may not be a big cause for concern, Hooda will hoping to lead his team by example with a big performance against the reigning champions.Winning at home this season: #IsseToughKuchNahiBut @DabangDelhiKC had other ideas as they scripted a sensational comeback in the first match in New Delhi!Keep watching #VIVOProKabaddi on Star Sports and Hotstar.#DELvBLR pic.twitter.com/295F7J74fG— ProKabaddi (@ProKabaddi) August 24, 2019 Since their hattrick of victories, champions Bengaluru Bulls have won just one and lost four in their past five matches – a run of results which has seen them drop to fifth in the standings. Their latest defeat came at the hands of Dabang Delhi K.C. last night, in a match where they led by eight points at half-time.While ‘Hi-Flyer’ Pawan Sehrawat was at his sizzling best and finished with 17 raid points, the rest of the raiding unit contributed just four raid points, while giving away three tackle points. Skipper Rohit Kumar has found points difficult to come by and has averaged just 4.25 points over his last four outings. However, the former MVP has all the tools to deliver a big performance and will certainly be gunning to do so against the table-toppers on Sunday.last_img read more

NBA in India: Nita Ambani to Present Ceremonial ‘Match Ball’ Ahead of Indiana Pacers vs Sacramento Kings

first_imgMumbai: Nita Ambani, Chairperson of Reliance Foundation will be presenting the ceremonial ‘Match Ball’ to NBA officials on Friday ahead of the Indiana Pacers vs Sacramento Kings game at the NSCI Dome in Mumbai. The ceremonial match ball handover is a mark of welcoming the NBA to India for their first ever game in the country. With the NBA in India for preseason games, Reliance Foundation is celebrating six years of its significant partnership with the league, through the grassroots initiative Reliance Foundation Junior NBA program. The initiative has been recognized as the world’s largest Junior NBA program, with a reach of 11 million children from 34 cities in 20 states, inspiring the youth to adopt healthy, active lifestyle by integrating basketball into physical education.As part of the celebration, Reliance Foundation has invited a stadium full of children from its Junior NBA program to get the rare opportunity to watch the first ever NBA game live at the NSCI Dome on Friday.”Reliance Foundation is proud to bring the NBA to India and present these children with a fantastic opportunity to witness the magic live at stadium. It has been a deeply fulfilling journey in our partnership with the NBA. I would like to thank the NBA in believing in Indian basketball and for being a great partner on this incredible journey. “The new India is rising as a major player across multiple sports. We are the youngest nation in the world with over 600 million Indians under the age of 25 years, and I strongly believe that the future of Indian sport is bright, brilliant and beautiful,” Ambani said. Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. basketballindiana pacersNBAnba in india First Published: October 3, 2019, 9:35 PM ISTlast_img read more