PHOENIX– The Arizona Diamondbacks didn’t enter the offseason expecting to add to their rotation, but the club ended up signing one of the best starters available to the second-richest free agent deal in franchise history.That’s what happens when Madison Bumgarner forces the issue.“It was the No. 1 place for me,” Bumgarner said of Arizona. “I did tell (my agent) that. We talked about that often.”Following a news conference at Chase Field on Tuesday in which the D’backs officially introduced …
15 September 2015Sibella the cheetah died early in the morning in the Samara Private Game Reserve near Graaff-Reinet after a clash with a duiker buck it was hunting. The cheetah suffered a deep wound to its abdomen.Born wild in North West province, Sibella was rehomed in Samara in 2003. It had been captured and tortured by hunters at the age of two. Sibella died on Friday, 11 September.“Lying at death’s door, she was fortunate enough to be rescued by the De Wildt Cheetah and Wildlife Trust. She owes her life to the five-hour surgery and dedicated rehabilitation that ensued,” said Margie Varney, Samara general manager, said at the time of the relocation.Sibella began a new chapter in December 2003, when it was released on to the Samara game reserve. The release surpassed all expectations.Samara Private Game Reserve lies 20km southeast of Graaff-Rienet in Eastern Cape. It encompasses not only the Karoo mountain complex and parts of the Great Escarpment, but also sweeping plains to create a unique area for wildlife, including four of South Africa’s seven natural biomes. It is home to a variety of buck, birdlife and smaller carnivores, including the African wild cat and brown hyena, but is most famous for its Cheetah Metapopulation Programme, managed by the Endangered Wildlife Trust, of which Sibella was the most fruitful participant.Sibella reared an astonishing 20 cubs in four litters at Samara, alone contributing to a 3% increase in the wild cheetah population in South Africa.According to Varney, Sibella was a consummate mother, giving birth on steep mountain slopes to evade other predators, and always making sure the cubs had enough to eat and were well-protected before going out on their own.Sibella had shared an extraordinary bond with humans. “With the birth of each new litter, when the cubs were old enough to leave their den, this wild cat dutifully presented to her human guardians her latest bundles of fur. The degree of trust she vested in human beings, walking to within just a few metres of them, was simply astounding – her past suffering at the hands of her tormentors all but forgotten,” Varney said.On the official Samara blog, a simple message from Varney and the rest of the reserve team offered some final words on the loss of Sibella: “We mourn her loss but seek comfort in knowing that she lived and died in a wild environment. We feel incredibly privileged to have been witness to the life of this exceptional cat.”On social media, wildlife photographers, conservationists and ordinary people from around the world posted heartfelt messages and photos of Sibella, queen of the Karoo cheetahs.Rest in Peace, Sibella . @samarakaroo #cheetah #SouthAfrica http://t.co/WW1CxNXHLC— Marcy Mendelson (@MendelsonImages) Septemb er 11, 2015Iconic “matriarch’ Cheetah Sibella dies http://t.co/6bleCsbg55#Op4Cheetahs #Sibella pic.twitter.com/HmBxga9Enk— #Op4Cheetahs (@Op4Cheetahs) September 12, 2015Ah. But what a legendary cheetah she was! Samara’s Sibella is no more. http://t.co/KRYpECB9Fs— Julienne du Toit (@KarooSpace) September 12, 2015SAinfo reporter
Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ San Beda’s Davon Potts and Donald Tankoua celebrate. Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netSan Beda stepped on the gas pedal early and blew Mapua out, 66-55, to nab its sixth win in the NCAA Season 93 men’s basketball tournament Friday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.Coming off a week-long break, the Red Lions imposed their will early and raced to a 23-6 charge in the first period, pulling away from the Cardinals and grabbing a lead as high as 25, 49-24 late in the third quarter.ADVERTISEMENT Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Mapua still tried to recover and cut the deficit to just nine, 64-55, after a Kim Magboo bucket with 1:12 to play, but Robert Bolick’s free throws doused that rally as San Beda cruised to its fifth straight victory.Donald Tankoua made a living in the paint for the Red Lions, grabbing 11 points and 16 rebounds for his best game to date.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsJavee Mocon got 10 markers and six boards, Davon Potts had eight points and three rebounds, and Bolick collected six markers, eight boards, and four dimes in the balanced attack for San Beda.Despite the comfortable triumph, coach Boyet Fernandez chided his wards for what he felt was a lackluster showing in the payoff period. SAN BEDA 66 – Tankoua 11, Mocon 10, Potts 8, Bolick 6, Soberano 6, Cabanag 5, Carino 4, Bahio 4, Doliguez 3, Adamos 3, Tongco 2, Presbitero 2, Oftana 2, Abuda 0.MAPUA 55 – Bunag 20, Orquina 11, Magboo 10, Nieles 6, Victoria 4, Aguirre 2, Gabo 2, Jimenez 0, Raflores 0.Quarters: 23-6, 31-20, 51-32, 66-55. LATEST STORIES For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. “If we played the way we played in the fourth quarter, I think we’ll have a hard time against them. We played bad in the fourth quarter,” he said. “I just have to let the other guys realize that we can’t let those things happen. I hope my players realize that.”The Cardinals missed the services of Andoy Estrella, who is nursing an MCL injury.In his absence, Christian Bunag stepped up for the skidding Mapua (1-6) with 20 points and 18 rebounds in the team’s fifth consecutive defeat.Almel Orquina got 11 markers and four boards, while Magboo had 10 points and four rebounds.The Scores:ADVERTISEMENT Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side DILG, PNP back suspension of classes during SEA Games NBA: Analyst Charles Barkley says it’s ‘stupid’ that Kyrie Irving wants to leave Cavs NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul NGCP on security risk: Chinese just technical advisers View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ
Putting finishing touches to footballs: Poor infrastructureFor an industry whose future rests on its lucrative export potential, the growth rate of the Indian sports goods industry has levelled off to an unimpressive canter.With the home market consuming a bare 15 per cent, bad infrastructural planning, lack of adequate export incentives from the Government and the adverse impact of inter-state politics on raw material procurement have cumulatively contributed to a situation where Indian exports, which stood at Rs 25 crore a decade ago, are currently targeted only at Rs 35 crore. While Jullundur, where 500 of the industry’s 700 units are located, has clearly come a long way since the partition split the flourishing Punjab industry asunder, the export statistics of leading competitor Pakistan stand in stark contrast. From 1978-79 to 1982-83, Pakistan’s exports have doubled from Rs 21.2 crore to Rs 45 crore.Said Anil Mehta, secretary, Sports Goods Manufacturers’ and Exporters’ Association: “Indian sports goods industry is on the verge of a complete collapse. The price of raw material has gone up 15 to 17 per cent over the last one year, besides its non-availability.The Pakistan Government’s recent fillip to the industry – cash incentive at 22 per cent of the value of the exports and duty drawback at 15 per cent – has made Indian products non-competitive in world markets.” Despite pleas from the industry, the Indian Government has continued to offer cash incentives of only 10 to 15 per cent, and duty drawbacks of a mere 3 to 5 per cent.The industry’s problems have been further compounded by the obstructionist attitudes of raw material supplying state governments. For example, the Jammu and Kashmir Government anxious to develop its own sports goods industry banned the export of willow, a monopoly produce vital for the manufacture of cricket bats and wickets, in 1976. While humidity in the valley makes the production of quality bats impossible, the modern automatic plant which Pioneer Sports set up near Srinagar continues to suffer idle capacity, while some units in Jammu have been sending only semi-finished handles to Jullundur.Though entrepreneurs continue to offer double the price that the local units are paying to an unrelenting state government, a flourishing smuggling pipeline has jacked up manufacturing costs. Said Prem Jain, a major exporter of cricketing equipment: “A free movement would cut down the price of bats by 10 per cent.”Indifferent Planning: Similarly in the case of hockey, while the increased popularity of the sport has brought with it a boom in the demand for hockey sticks, the mulberry they are made of has continued to be of a poorer quality compared to Pakistan’s due to lack of organised cultivation.Though the plains of Punjab are ideal for mulberry production and Pakistan grows fine mulberry on reserves in Changamanga near Lahore and in Faisalabad appeals to the Punjab Government to establish plantations on its sprawling canal banks have been of no avail.Consequently, a Pakistani stick fetches Rs 125 in the world market as compared to Rs 85 for an Indian one. Echoed Mehta: “Last year, Jullundur made four lakh sticks and earned Rs 1 crore and Pakistan earned Rs 2 crore with a little more than half that number.”The indifferent tale of infrastructural deficiency continues into leather, a major raw material for the manufacture of balls and boxing equipment. With the only government tannery nearly out of operation, it is first transported to Madras for tanning and finishing, and then used in Jullundur. Bemoaned exporter Prem Gupta: “Quality leather is our major headache. While the Government dilly-dallies, we are too small to set up our own tannery.” With a single order of Rs 60 lakh from K-mart, a US departmental store chain, Gupta is exporting footballs worth Rs 2.24 crore this year.Apportioning Blame: Nevertheless, the industry cannot escape all responsibility for its own plight. Commented industry veteran Dina Nath Mehta acidly: “There has been no effort at research and development. Why blame the Government alone when we have done nearly nothing. But for the skills of artisans, we would have not scored the present heights.”Mehta, a sport enthusiast, lamented that there had been no effort by the industry to popularise sport in the country. Said he: “Consider a country of India’s size consuming sports goods worth Rs 10 crore when it should be spending Rs 100 crore. No doubt the exports are good but what about the home market?”In addition, the profits of this business which is still organised as a cottage industry, are dependent on workers it has provided little incentives to. Except for a few units that have regular organised workers, 80 per cent of the manufacturing is handled by piece wage earners in dingy Jullundur bastis. Labour welfare efforts lack woefully and all benefits of fixed wage earners are denied to them. Lamented craftsman Parshotam Lal, 40: “In return for our skill and sweat, we get paltry wages which have dwindled in the last three years. While I was getting Rs 7 per football last year, I now get only Rs 5 – and I can only stitch a maximum of three daily.”For an industry which has, according to experts, an annual export potential of Rs 70 crore, besides creating a good home market, the portents are grim. The Jullundur branch of the Export Promotional Council has remained headless, despite the efforts of council chairman C. Venkatraman. Neither the Central nor the state Government has persuaded any officer to take up regional directorship of this body. Of this unconcern, the Asiad, for which most of the sporting equipment had to be imported from abroad, was only an acerbic reminder.