Austin, Ravena lead PH team in 2017 FIBA Asia Champions Cup

first_imgLATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. NBA players go on trial in 2015 Phoenix assault  ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Austin arrived in the country last week to join the PH team and is one of the prospective naturalization candidates for Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) moving forward.Also, fresh from winning his fourth gold medal in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Kiefer Ravena has been called up anew for national team duty.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingCarl Bryan Cruz will also be a part of the team after impressive showings in the 2017 Fiba Asia Cup and the 2017 SEA Games, together with cadets Raymar Jose and Almond Vosotros.Gilas pool members LA Revilla and Norbert Torres were also tabbed to bolster the team. No more menthol cigarettes: New ban on tobacco, vape flavors Trump to designate Mexican drug cartels as terrorist groups Argentine bishop appears at court hearing on abuse charges Winter storm threatens to scramble Thanksgiving travel plans Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’center_img Teaming up for the first time since their days in Xavier School, brothers Jeron and Jeric Teng will also be in the fold.Completing the squad are UP swingman Jett Manuel, TNT guard Alfrancis Tamsi, and Congolese big man Rod Ebondo of CEU, who will act as the team’s second import in lieu of UP’s Bright Akhuetie, who failed to secure a clearance from the UAAP.Flying V’s Gab Banal and AMA’s Andre Paras will also join the team in the tournament as the squad’s reserves.Sources close to the situation bared the roster. Gilas submitted the list on Monday.Reyes and Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. president Ronald Mascariñas will make the official announcement during the team’s sendoff on Tuesday at Discovery Suites Hotel in Mandaluyong.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netDebuting for the first time in the national colors, Isaiah Austin will be front and center for Chooks-to-Go Gilas Pilipinas when it wages war against club teams in the 2017 Fiba Asia Champions Cup.The 7-foot-1 center headlines the 12-man roster coach Chot Reyes will be banking on Chenzhou, China from September 22 to 30.ADVERTISEMENT Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim View comments Big names like Calvin Abueva and Terrence Romeo were absent in the list as Reyes could not get a clearance from the players’ mother ballclubs despite Alaska and GlobalPort already being booted out in the playoff race of the 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup.Chooks-To-Go PH is slotted in Group A and will play ONGC of India, Mono Vampire of Thailand, Petrochimi of Iran, and Sarreyet Ramallah of Palestine in the group stages.Advancing to the latter stages could also mean a collision course against Filipino naturalized player Andray Blatche, who is suiting up for his mother ballclub Xinjiang Flying Tigers of China.Gilas is set to leave for Chenzhou on Wednesday.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:49Robredo: 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 Gameslast_img read more

Sprinting to Disaster

first_imgThey call it Murphy’s Law, the adage that “everything that can go wrong will go wrong”. For the organisers and stakeholders of the New Delhi Commonwealth Games, it’s a law that is being self-perpetuated with grim consequences. Days before the Games were to begin, two men on a motorcycle sprayed,They call it Murphy’s Law, the adage that “everything that can go wrong will go wrong”. For the organisers and stakeholders of the New Delhi Commonwealth Games, it’s a law that is being self-perpetuated with grim consequences. Days before the Games were to begin, two men on a motorcycle sprayed a bus carrying Taiwanese tourists with pistol fire in the Jama Masjid area, critically injuring two and triggering a fresh security scare; an overbridge meant to ferry athletes and spectators from the main stadium to the car park collapsed, injuring 23 labourers; parts of the false ceiling of the weightlifting venue at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium came crashing down and an advance party from New Zealand, Canada, Scotland and Ireland raised serious concerns about the unhygienic conditions in the residential zone of the Games Village constructed under the supervision of the DDA.Collapsed footover bridge near the main venue.The Village was to be officially opened on September 23 and just two days before that it was in an “uninhabitable and filthy” condition, says the chief executive of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), Mike Hooper, with human excreta clogging the toilets, stray dogs sleeping on beds meant for athletes and officials, and switches, faucets and lifts that didn’t work.To add to the embarrassment, the secretary general of the Organising Committee (OC), Lalit Bhanot, came out with the shocking, even bizarre statement, “Our hygienic standards and foreigners’ hygiene standards are different”; thereby implying that Indians are fine with excreta and filth in their living accommodation. If that wasn’t enough, the security arrangements were exposed by an Australian TV crew that managed to smuggle ammonium nitrate, an explosive, in a detonation box into the main venue, Jawaharlal Nehru stadium, an ominous sign in view of a purported Indian Mujahideen e-mail received by a media house soon after the Jama Masjid firing, threatening to target foreigners at the Games.advertisementIt’s a chain of disasters that sends a dubious message to 70 other participating nations on the eve of the arrival of athletes. There’s more. The heavy rains have ensured that the Yamuna, adjoining the Games Village, is flowing above the danger mark, heightening the scare over dengue. It was no great surprise that some top athletes from England declared they were pulling out of the Games, including world triple jump champion Phillips Idowu.Countdown to CrisisJawaharLal Nehru Stadium: Rs 961-crore project by CPWD. 11 days before the Games the ceiling of the weightlifting complex falls; a pedestrian overbridge in the main complex constructed by the PWD collapses.Commonwealth Games Village: Worth Rs 1,000 crore, constructed by DDA. Termed “uninhabitable” on the eve of the arrival of participating athletes.Indira Gandhi Sports Complex: Renovated at a cost of Rs 669 crore by the Sports Authority of India. The velodrome has suffered damage due to waterlogging and seepage. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh pressed the panic button and deputed Delhi Lt. Governor Tejendra Khanna, also DDA chairman, to personally oversee the clean-up operation. In contrast, Union Urban Development Minister Jaipal Reddy, who heads the Group of Ministers (GoM) constituted last year to ensure effective coordination between 54 agencies to make the Games a success, seems unfazed. Calling the concern about cleanliness as “not major”, he stressed that “the Games next month would be absolutely world class”.Such is the Nero-like fiddling by officials, with top dog Suresh Kalmadi maintaining an eerie silence, that the threat to the conduct of the Games and the prospect of other hurriedly built venues and structures collapsing, mean India’s image has taken a serious beating. “The writing was on the wall,” says a senior member of GoM who insists that he will come out in open with details of mismanagement after the Games are over. “If they are to happen, that is,” he adds. The Government opened the doors of the treasury in the name of country’s honour, with the cost of the Games now reaching an estimated Rs 70,000 crore.The Games Village, worth more than Rs 1,000 crore, with 14 blocks and 34 towers having 1,168 air-conditioned flats that can house over 8,000 athletes and team officials, was handed over to OC by the DDA as late as end of last month. When the chefs-de-mission from participating countries, who started moving in by September 15, raised concerns about the cleanliness, the OC promptly shifted them from their allotted towers to the one meant for the Indian contingent.”I have never seen such under-preparedness in my life. I don’t think we’ll get any big event, such as the Olympics, in future.”Kunjarani Devi, weightlifter advertisementTroubled Trio: (From left) Kalmadi, Dikshit and Gill are shirking responsibility.During this time, there were some 12,000 labourers engaged at the site putting overlays in place, and without effective monitoring by the OC. They defecated in the bathrooms meant for players and no cleaning up was carried out before they were opened for inspection just two days before the players were to shift in. Weightlifter Kunjarani Devi slammed the shoddy work for the Games, saying “I have never seen such under-preparedness ever in my life”. Adding that she was ashamed of what was going on, the ace weightlifter said the CWG mess will affect India’s chances to bid for sporting events. “I don’t think we’ll get any big event, such as the Olympics, in future,” she said.As the situation stands today, there can’t be a bigger contrast to the stated objective: to deliver the best Games ever, showcase project India as an economic power and Delhi as a global destination. Documentary proof of the mess was provided by the Central Vigilance Commission’s (CVC) probe in August this year when it carried out inspection at 16 Games-related projects by agencies such as the PWD (under the Delhi Government), CPWD, DDA, NDMC and MCD (all under the Government of India).Shattered window pane of the bus attacked near Jama Masjid.Explaining the modus operandi, the CVC said that agencies created alarming circumstances and used them as an alibi to demand more funds and induct favourite contractors without adhering to the safeguards. These conditions were artfully created under the nose of the GoM which kept sending positive signals while the Government kept hiking budgets. The allocation in the last two years to the tune of Rs 7,271 crore while a paltry sum of Rs 378 crore was given for the preparation of teams. These renewed targets and budget need to be approved by the GoM, but nobody in the Government questioned the cost escalations.Sports Minister M.S. Gill was forthright in articulating his ministry’s resolve to keep things open and transparent, but has been an embarrassment himself by first refusing to acknowledge world wrestling champion Sushil Kumar’s coach, even pushing him aside, and then refusing to answer questions when the excreta literally hit the fan. He brushed aside the CVC report, saying action has to wait as the “focus must now be on the success of the Games”.The swollen Yamuna with the Games Village in the background.Top functionaries in the ministry are now looking for a face-saver even as the hostess of the Games, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, known for her great working rapport with Gill and Reddy but not with Kalmadi, took no action. She wanted to wait for the full report, assuring “account and accountability will be fixed”.Dikshit blamed the rains for the mess which is a politician’s favourite ploy to divert attention and accountability. The national shame is as much about shoddy workmanship, corruption, inefficiency and lack of transparency as it is about how India is exposed as a country with First World ambitions and pompous declarations with Fourth World mentality. India’s biggest Games are becoming its biggest embarrassment and no one knows when the next disaster will strike.advertisementlast_img read more