Morne du Plessis: a true leader

first_imgMorne du Plessis was one of South Africa’s greatest rugby players and leaders, and in both respects he followed in his father’s footsteps. Du Plessis senior led the Springboks to a four-nil whitewash of the much-vaunted All Blacks in 1949, and 37 years later Du Plessis junior led the Boks to a three-one series triumph over New Zealand. They are the only father-son combination in Springbok history to captain the team.Morne began playing for the South African national team some years earlier, making his debut as Springbok eighthman in 1971 in a three-test series away to Australia. It was a successful series for the tourists, who won the three matches 18-6, 14-6 and 19-11.It was another three years before South Africa took to the international rugby stage again, and it proved a tough time for Springbok rugby as they faced the 1974 British Lions team, regarded by many as the finest rugby team ever assembled. The Lions swept through South Africa unbeaten, drawing only their last test against the Springboks 13-13.DroppedDu Plessis played in the first two tests, losses of 12-3 and a then record 28-9, before being dropped. It was a time of panic in Springbok selection, with 33 players in all taking the field against the Lions. Only three players played in all four tests.Through the rest of his 22-test career, covering 10 years but restricted to few matches because of South Africa’s apartheid policies, Du Plessis would play in only two more losing matches.South Africa toured France towards the end of 1974 and the Springboks restored some pride by defeating the Tricolores 10-8 and 13-4. Du Plessis played in both games.CaptaincyThe French toured South Africa the following year again, and Du Plessis was selected to lead the Springboks. He proved a success in the leadership role as the home team won 38-25 in Bloemfontein and 33-18 in Pretoria. The next big challenge awaiting Du Plessis was a four-test series against the All Blacks in 1976. It proved a much tighter and tougher challenge than the one provided by the French.The South Africans claimed a somewhat controversial series win under Du Plessis’ captaincy, winning the first test 16-7, losing the second 15-9, winning the third 15-10 and taking victory in the fourth 15-14. In 1977, the Springboks faced a World XV in Pretoria and triumphed 45-24 in a high-scoring encounter.It was three years before the South Africans played a test again, as the bite of international isolation took its toll. Just prior to a much-anticipated tour by the British Lions, the Springboks faced South America, a team made up mostly of Argentinians, but also including players from Chile and Uruguay, in two tests. With Du Plessis to the fore, South Africa won 24-9 in Johannesburg and 18-9 in Durban.Where did SA stand in world rugby?The Lions series was eagerly awaited because South Africa had beaten New Zealand in 1976 after their thrashing at the hands of the Lions, while the All Blacks had narrowly beaten the Lions in 1977. The question was: Where did South Africa stand in world rugby in 1980?In the first test in Cape Town, the Lions held the upper hand up front, but the Springbok backs had the edge over their opponents and the home side scored five tries to one as the Boks claimed a 26-22 victory. Du Plessis’ side ensured that they would at least share the series when they defeated the tourists 26-19 in Bloemfontein.In trying conditions, the South Africans made sure of winning the series when they pipped the Lions 12-10 in Port Elizabeth. With the outcome of the series already decided, the Lions managed a consolation win in the final test, triumphing 17-13 in Pretoria.A fitting send-offIn October 1980, the Springboks toured South America, but Du Plessis played in only one of the two tests, leading his team to a 30-16 success against the Jaguars in Santiago. The Western Province eighthman’s final test in charge of the Boks was a November international against France in Pretoria. With a powerful performance that saw the home team outscore the French five tries to one, Du Plessis was provided with a fitting send-off as South Africa triumphed 37-15.In all, he played in 22 tests for South Africa, 18 of which were victories. Under his leadership South Africa won 13 matches and lost only twice.His contribution to Springbok rugby was not over, however, and in 1995 he played an important role in what was perhaps South Africa’s biggest ever triumph in the sport.Du Plessis managed the Springbok team in the World Cup held in South Africa. Up until that time, provincial rivalries had dogged the national side, but under his considerable leadership skills the team gelled and went on to win the World Cup. Du Plessis’ role in that victory should not be under-estimated.The Laureus World Sports AwardsHis stature in the world of rugby, and in sport in general, was recognised by the Laureus World Sports Awards, the sports equivalent of the Oscars in which the world’s best athletes are honoured by former greats of sport.He was elected a member of the World Sports Academy, to decide upon the winners of the annual awards, placing him in the company of other greats of the sporting world including Gary Player, Nadia Comaneci, Sir Bobby Charlton, Mark Spitz, Sir Vivian Richards, Hugo Porta, Sergey Bubka, Kip Keino, Martina Navratilova, Dan Marino, Sebastian Coe, Jack Nicklaus, Willie Shoemaker and Katarina Witt, among others.Today Du Plessis remains one of South African sport’s favourite sons, highly respected for his role as a sportsman both on and off the field.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Read More →

Diamond necklace stolen from Sonam Kapoor’s home

first_imgA theft has taken place at Sonam Kapoor’s bungalow in Mumbai as one of her diamond necklaces has gone missing. The actress has registered a complaint with the Juhu police on February 5 and they have filed a theft case against unknown persons.Sonam Kapoor’s diamond necklace has gone missing According to the complaint filed by Sonam, the necklace went missing after she wore it at a party on February 4 and could not find it the next day in her drawer. She further added that the jewellery, worth approximately Rs 5 lakh, was given for an endorsement.A complaint has been lodged under Section 380 of the Indian Penal Code and the police has begun the investigations by questioning their domestic help.A leading daily quoted an officer from the Juhu police station, “We are investigating from all angles. We are also looking into whether Sonam dropped the necklace in the party she had attended.”The police is looking at all the angles and even the CCTV footage from the party will be checked by them.last_img read more

Read More →

President Kovind gives assent to JK Reorganisation Bill two new UTs come

first_imgNew Delhi: As the President gave his assent to the bill, the Jammu and Kashmir administration eased the restriction imposed in the state since August 5. The administration withdrew section 144 from Jammu and announced that schools will open on Saturday.Days after the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019 was passed by the Parliament, President Ram Nath Kovind Friday gave his assent to the legislation. The reorganisation bill provides for the formation of the Union Territory of Ladakh without Legislature and a separate one for Jammu and Kashmir with the Legislature. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details The President has given assent to the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, a home ministry official said. The Bill to bifurcate the state into two Union Territories — Jammu and Kashmir with a Legislature similar to Puducherry, and Ladakh without one like Chandigarh was passed with a two-thirds majority of the members present in Rajya Sabha. In Lok Sabha, the statutory resolution scrapping the special status was passed by a voice vote in the evening. With special provisions gone, Indian laws will now apply to the newly created Union Territories. As the President gave his assent to the bill, the Jammu and Kashmir administration eased the restriction imposed in the state since August 5. The administration withdrew section 144 from Jammu and announced that schools will open on Saturday.(Inputs from The Indian Express)last_img read more

Read More →

Mother of newborn apprehended in Winnipeg hopeful reunion will happen soon

first_imgWINNIPEG — Manitoba’s First Nations family advocate says a mother who had her newborn baby apprehended will learn this week about when the child will be reunited with family.Social media videos of the two-day-old baby girl being taken from the arms of her crying mother in a Winnipeg hospital led to outcry online and calls for change from Indigenous leaders.A statement from the First Nations Family Advocate Office says the family attended its first court date and has visited the baby.The mother, who cannot be identified under Manitoba law, says in the statement that she had a private arrangement before the birth to transfer guardianship to her aunt.She says they are working with child and family services to make that happen as soon as possible.Statistics from the Manitoba government show newborn apprehensions occur, on average, about once a day in the province.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Read More →

Shooting in Oklahoma City After Thunders Victory Injures 7

The celebration around the Oklahoma City Thunder’s victory over the Los Angeles Lakers quickly turned to horror last night when a gunman opened fire into a crowd of women just blocks away from the arena. Police spokesman Dexter Nelson said a group of men were arguing with a group of females at 11:35 p.m. when the men began shooting into the crowd.According to News9, OKC police confirmed seven people were shot; one is in critical condition while all other gunshot wounds caused non-life threatening injuries.

Read More →

BroncosTitans Is The Biggest Game Of Week 14

Indianapolis3941347– CHANCE OF MAKING PLAYOFFS 1. Denver (8-4) vs. Tennessee (6-6) — 119 total ‘swing’ points Green Bay2220255– Only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome shown Philadelphia has blown a promising season and now has just a 2 percent chance of making the playoffs. Washington is in danger of similar collapse, narrowly falling the last two weeks in winnable games against the Cowboys and Cardinals. They’d be out of the playoffs if the season ended today, and this week Philadelphia has the opportunity to play spoiler and knock another 18 percentage points or so off their rival’s chances. 3. New Orleans (5-7) vs. Tampa Bay (7-5) — 95 total ‘swing’ points Minnesota2825306– Tampa Bay is playing meaningful December football! The Buccaneers haven’t had a winning season since 2010, and they’ve come in last in the NFC South for five straight years. But a four-game win streak with upsets against the Chiefs and Seahawks has sent their Elo rating skyrocketing, and they’re now contenders for both the division title (25 percent chance of winning) and an NFC wild card (30 percent chance). AFFECTED TEAMCURRENTIF DEN WINSIF TEN WINSSWING Only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome shown Buffalo1061710– Philadelphia2<144– Washington39%61%21%40– AFFECTED TEAMCURRENTIF HOU WINSIF IND WINSSWING Arizona8792– Only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome shown Tampa Bay55%24%70%46– Atlanta8688853– Miami15122412– The NFL has its first playoff team! While the 11-1 Cowboys don’t quite have a lock on the NFC East title, they will at least make it as a wild card. They’ll now be playing for a bye and home-field advantage while the rest of the league fights for the remaining playoff spots.For the last couple weeks, we’ve been using the model behind our 2016 NFL predictions to calculate how much each team’s playoff chances “swing” depending on the outcome of each game. For example, we currently give the Pittsburgh Steelers a 67 percent chance of making the playoffs. If they beat Buffalo this week, we project those chances will increase to 84 percent (independent of other games). If they lose, their chances drop to 53 percent.1Our NFL predictions are based on 100,000 simulations of the rest of the season and are updated after every game ends. In the simulations in which Pittsburgh beats Buffalo, they make the playoffs 84 percent of the time. In simulations where they lose, they make the playoffs 53 percent of the time. But it’s unlikely that Pittsburgh’s playoff probabilities will be exactly 84 percent or exactly 53 percent at the end of Week 14, because the team’s chances depend on the outcome of several games (most notably Baltimore’s), not just their own. That’s a 31 percentage point swing! By doing this same math for every matchup and factoring in how each team’s resulting record will affect others’ playoff odds, we can find out which games are the most impactful.Here are the top five for Week 14: CHANCE OF MAKING PLAYOFFS AFFECTED TEAMCURRENTIF NO WINSIF TB WINSSWING Baltimore39%66%32%35– Denver70%82%43%39– Indianapolis3945955– Minnesota2833258– 2. Houston (6-6) vs. Indianapolis (6-6) — 117 total ‘swing’ points CHANCE OF MAKING PLAYOFFS As straightforward as it gets. Whichever team wins takes control of the AFC South and gets a big playoff boost. The Titans have an outside chance at the division but don’t really care who wins here. Detroit9091893– Tampa Bay5551587– N.Y. Giants6562697– The Raiders, Chiefs and Broncos all won last week, and we now think it’s pretty likely that the West will take both AFC wild card slots. Tennessee has had a commendable bounceback season, but they’re in a tough playoff situation. The AFC West’s success means that even if the Titans run the table to end the season at 10-6, that might not be enough to make it as a wild card, and their 0-3 record against the Texans and Colts makes it unlikely that they’d win a division tiebreaker. We give them just an 11 percent chance of making the playoffs, much lower than the chances of Green Bay, Minnesota, Indianapolis and Houston, who all share the same 6-6 record. Denver7065716– AFFECTED TEAMCURRENTIF WSH WINSIF PHI WINSSWING 4. Washington (6-5-1) vs. Philadelphia (5-7) — 81 total ‘swing’ points Houston52554312– Houston52%87%32%55– Washington3943376– Pittsburgh67497223– Baltimore3937436– Only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome shown Detroit9088913– Pittsburgh6766693– New Orleans512112– Green Bay2225213– 5. Baltimore (7-5) vs. New England (10-2) — 77 total ‘swing’ points CHANCE OF MAKING PLAYOFFS AFFECTED TEAMCURRENTIF BAL WINSIF NE WINSSWING N.Y. Giants6571638– Miami1517152– One of the NFL’s best rivalries is heating up again! The Ravens and Steelers both won last week to improve to 7-5. With the AFC West bogarting the wild cards, it’s looking like only one of the two will make the playoffs as AFC North champ. So why do we give the Ravens, who would make the playoffs if the season ended today, just a 39 percent chance of advancing? For one, we have them as nine-point underdogs in Foxborough this week. For another the Steelers still have a game to play against the lowly Browns, plus an opportunity to tie up the season series at home against the Ravens in Week 16.Check out our latest NFL predictions. Only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome shown Tennessee1142825– CHANCE OF MAKING PLAYOFFS Atlanta8684874– read more

Read More →

Yes Parity Was Real This Season But Baylor Still Dominated

Before the national championship game tipped off on Sunday, things seemed to be going according to plan for Baylor and Notre Dame. Two No. 1 seeds — and two of the three teams to be ranked No. 1 during the regular season — would face off, with one seeking to cap a dominant, one-loss season, and the other aiming for its second title in as many years.Once the game began, though, practically nothing went according to plan for either team.Baylor raced out to a 15-5 lead and led by as many as 17 in the first half and 12 at halftime. The Bears dominated, getting contributions from inside (12 first-half points from center Kalani Brown) and out (5-5 shooting in the first quarter from point guard Chloe Jackson). It was the bad kind of déjà vu for Notre Dame head coach Muffet McGraw, whose Fighting Irish needed a 15-point comeback — the largest ever in an NCAA championship game — to take home the trophy last season.But in the second half, it was Mulkey’s team that had the bad kind of déjà vu. A year after then-senior Kristy Wallace tore her ACL in Baylor’s regular-season finale, the Bears lost Big 12 defensive player of the year Lauren Cox to a knee injury in the third quarter. Notre Dame promptly came all the way back to tie the game at 74 with 5:18 left in the fourth quarter and even briefly took a 77-76 lead with a little more than three minutes left.Baylor ultimately pulled out an 82-81 victory behind big contributions from the game’s most outstanding player in Jackson (26 points, five assists), Brown (20 points, 13 rebounds) and freshman reserve NaLyssa Smith (14 points, six rebounds). Notre Dame looked unstoppable at one point in the fourth quarter, with Marina Mabrey canning three 3-pointers in just over two minutes, but came undone at the free-throw line late, with two crucial misses in the final minute.In the end, when the confetti fell from the rafters to signal the end of the 2018-19 women’s college basketball season, everything was more or less as expected. The No. 1 overall seed hoisted the trophy, emerging out of a field that saw all of the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds advance to the Elite Eight and the two teams that had the best odds of winning a title at the outset make it to the championship game. Yet parity was rightfully the buzzword of this season: Teams like Oregon and NC State had historic years; mid-major Rice cracked the top-25 rankings for the first time, and Gonzaga hit its highest ranking in program history at No. 12; and mighty UConn was not a No. 1 seed for the first time since 2006. In the Final Four, the combined margin of victory (including the championship) was 11 points — the smallest such margin in women’s NCAA Tournament history, according to ESPN’s Stats & Information Group.Paradoxically, the 2019 national champions both rejected that parity and exemplified it.Baylor dominated its schedule from start to finish, posting a 37-1 record and finishing the season on a 29-game win streak.. The Bears claimed their ninth-straight regular-season conference title and won the Big 12 tournament for the ninth time in 11 years. The 6-foot-7 Brown and the 6-foot-4 Cox had All-America-caliber seasons, combining to average nearly 29 points and 17 rebounds per game. Behind their two interior leaders, Baylor led the country in blocks per game, assists per game, rebounding rate and opponent field-goal percentage.But as much as they dominated, Baylor also embodied the growth of the game, defeating UConn in the regular season and Notre Dame in the championship game. This is the first time that a team has beaten both the Huskies and the Fighting Irish, two of the sport’s premier programs over the past decade-plus, in the same season since Baylor did it in 2012-13. The program has now won three national championships and made four Final Fours since 2005 while reaching the Elite Eight in eight of the past 10 seasons. By anyone’s definition, Baylor should be considered in the upper echelon of programs, on par with UConn and Notre Dame.Mulkey has built her program into a powerhouse in part by recruiting well, but also by developing players and putting them in position to succeed. She signed three top-5 recruiting classes in the past four years, according to ESPN, including the nation’s No. 1 class in 2018. Yet she still found herself without an experienced option at point guard entering this season. She settled on an unorthodox solution, moving graduate transfer Jackson to point guard and teaching her the nuances of the position throughout the year. On Sunday night, Jackson proved that her coach made the right decision, committing just one turnover all game and scoring Baylor’s final 4 points.In the end, Baylor claimed the 2019 national title by the slimmest of margins,1It was the second 1-point championship in women’s NCAA Tournament history, matching North Carolina’s 1-point win over Louisiana Tech in 1994. simultaneously proving that parity is real in the women’s game and ensuring that the Bears will be regarded as one of this decade’s elite programs. They will rebuild again in the offseason, as they lose Brown and Jackson off of this year’s team. But don’t be surprised if Baylor produces the good kind of déjà vu in seasons to come, as Mulkey has built the Bears into a perennial contender and a team that can compete with anyone — UConn and Notre Dame included.Check out our latest March Madness predictions. read more

Read More →

University of San Diego releases identity of former coach referred to in

first_img Jonathan Halvorson, KUSI Newsroom University of San Diego releases identity of former coach referred to in college admissions scheme Jonathan Halvorson, KUSI Newsroom, Categories: Local San Diego News, National & International News, Sports Updated: 6:29 AM FacebookTwitter SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – University of San Diego released a new statement regarding the admissions bribery scheme and the identify the former coach referred to by the government.USD said they can now disclose the identity of the coach involved as former men’s head basketball coach Lamont Smith, who left USD in March 2018.According to university officials USD was subject to a confidentiality order that restricted their ability to identify the former coach last week.“Based on our review of the information available to us to date and on what the government has told us, the only USD employees, students or applicants involved in the alleged wrongdoing are the three people identified by the government: Lamont Smith and two applicants, one is a current student and one declined admission,” the university said in a statement.Smith left the university under fire in March 2018 after he was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence. The case was subsequently dropped, and Smith left USD to join the University of Texas-El Paso men’s basketball team as an assistant coach. Smith resigned from his UTEP position Wednesday afternoon.“We continue to have no reason to believe that any other employees, students or applicants were involved in or aware of any wrongdoing. Certainly, if different or new information comes to our attention, either through the results of the investigation or otherwise, we will take appropriate action to respond,” USD officials explained in a statement.Fifty people were charged on March 12th in a scheme in which wealthy parents allegedly bribed college coaches and other insiders to get their children into some of the nation’s most elite universities.Parents of prospective students conspired with a college entrance consultant to beat the system and ensure their students were admitted or had a better chance to be admitted to certain colleges or universities, including Yale, Stanford, Texas, UCLA, USC, Wake Forest and others. Posted: March 20, 2019 March 20, 2019last_img read more

Read More →