Beijing touts `safe' Games
Beijing's already tight security will be stepped up for the 2008 Olympics with paramilitary troops, electronic surveillance and even taxi drivers lending a hand. Security will play "an overarching role" at the games, the official China Daily newspaper said. "We do not want to turn Beijing into a fortress, but a place with an auspicious and peaceful atmosphere that will make athletes, coaches and visitors feel relaxed and safe," Qiang Wei, the city's deputy Communist Party secretary, was quoted as saying. The effort will involve police, soldiers and paramilitary troops, as well as other city workers including bus, subway and taxi drivers, Qiang said. The government says it wants to prevent terror attacks, but security in the capital already is tight in order to prevent any public dissent against communist rule. Chinese authorities will also adopt tactics used last year at the Olympics in Athens, which had "a vast computer surveillance network with thousands of hidden cameras and microphones that analyzed dozens of languages," the paper said.
China slashes ticket prices
Hoping to build support after a disastrous first season, teams in China's troubled Super League are giving heavy discounts on season tickets while offering fans more chances to interact with players. International Shanghai, one of three Super League teams in China's financial hub, slashed season tickets by half to just 50 yuan (US$6) while newly promoted cross-town rivals, Shanghai Zonbon, are charging just 60 yuan. International launched the new ticket prices this week with a fiesta outside its stadium featuring players singing karaoke and greeting fans.
Wrestling in pants prohibited
A tussle has broken out in Japan's tradition-bound sumo world over the right to wear pants in the ring. Gargantuan sumo wrestlers generally compete naked but for a "mawashi," an arrangement of wrapped cloth that preserves a bare minimum of modesty. Sumo's amateur association hit upon the idea of allowing shy youngsters to wear "sumo pants," a more substantial garment similar to cycling shorts, to try to boost the dwindling numbers of children taking up the sport, the daily Yomiuri Shimbun said on Thursday. "Pubescent kids are not going to want to take part if they don't look cool," Yomiuri quoted one local amateur sumo official as saying. The sport's professional body, the Nihon Sumo Kyokai, however, has made clear that it will not allow wrestlers in pants to take part in youth tournaments, the paper said.
Williamses write advice book
Serena and Venus Williams have written a book with advice for pre-teens on such subjects as money and dating. Regarding the latter, their recommendation: Don't rush a crush. "We both really have a lot to say about that," Venus said on Wednesday with a laugh. Titled Venus and Serena: Serving From the Hip: 10 rules for Living, Loving and Winning, the book is targeted at 9-to-12 year olds. "It's a great book for teenage girls who deal with different issues," Serena said. "Growing up, I would have loved to have had such a positive role model to look up to and try to be like and try to emulate. We love having that opportunity to say, `Look, you can be like us, you can be successful and at the same time have high morals and high self esteem and be a very nice person at the end of the day.'" The sisters, who are in Key Biscayne for the Nasdaq-100 Open, wrote the book with Hilary Beard.
‘CRIMINAL ACT’: The UCI said it ‘strongly condemns’ Dylan Groenewegen’s ‘dangerous behavior,’ which left Jakobsen in critical condition and injured other cyclists Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen was in a coma on Wednesday, in “serious” condition, after he was thrown into and over a barrier at 80kph in the conclusion to the opening stage of the Tour de Pologne. Footage showed 23-year-old Jakobsen, of the Deceuninck-Quick-Step, racing elbow-to-elbow with fellow Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma as both men frantically tussled in a tight sprint to the line in Katowice. However, Jakobsen came off worst, somersaulting over the barriers before colliding with a photographer after Groenewegen had veered suddenly to the right, squeezing his rival into the security wall. “His condition is very serious. His life is
Taiwan Steel on Sunday grabbed three points with a narrow 1-0 win against Hang Yuan FC, to move into the No. 2 spot on the Taiwan Football Premier League (TFPL) log, while Taipower FC beat NTUS 2-0 to maintain first place. Taking advantage early in the match of opposition defenders who had not yet settled down, Taiwan Steel’s attacking trio of Wu Chun-ching, Marc Fenelus from the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Benchy Astama from Haiti pushed forward with good passes. After only one minute of play, Fenelus dribbled from the right flank, feeding a short pass inside the penalty area to
LEAVING IT LATE: Rakuten added late runs last night to add to wins on Wednesday against the Brothers and the Lions on Friday that went down to the last batter The Rakuten Monkeys rallied to post three late runs for another close win, prevailing 5-3 over the Uni-President Lions yesterday as Taiwan’s second-half CPBL season got started with lower scoring output, but exciting finishes. It was Rakuten’s third win in a row. In two games this week, they seized victory in dramatic fashion with their last at-bat and have drawn level with the CTBC Brothers on top of the table after yesterday’s results, 0.5 games in front of the Fubon Guardians and 1.5 games ahead of the Lions. It was tied at 1-1 early, with Rakuten hosting the Lions at the Taoyuan Intenational
STAYING COOL: Hamilton said that his ‘heart nearly stopped’ when he noticed the puncture, but he kept going to beat Alain Prost’s total of six home wins in France Lewis Hamilton said he feared he might not make it home when a last lap puncture almost derailed his charge to a record seventh British Grand Prix victory on Sunday. “I didn’t think I would make it round the last two corners,” the world champion said. The front left tire of his Mercedes had delaminated and deflated on his final lap, leaving the six-time world champion to nurse his vehicle to the finish as second-placed Max Verstappen hunted him down. “I just can’t believe it,” Hamilton said. “It was heart-stopping. I backed off and stayed chilled and was so glad it happened on