print WhatsApp Facebook Twitter Email Connacht Rugby have confirmed that Alex Wootton has joined the club on a loan deal from Munster until the end of the 2020-21 season. Wootton first made his Munster debut in September 2016 and has gone on to make 39 appearances for the province, scoring 13 tries in the process. The 25-year old can play anywhere across the back three and has been capped for Ireland at Sevens and U20 level. Wootton has linked up with the Connacht squad this week during the first week of pre-season training at the Sportsground, as preparations begin for the planned Guinness PRO14 interpro derbies at the end of August. Commenting on today’s announcement, Head Coach Andy Friend says Wootton’s arrival will further strengthen Connacht’s back field options for the new season. “I am really pleased to welcome Alex Wootton to the province. Alex is a very exciting back three player who has all the talent to take his game to the next level. His versatility across the back line will also help us as we look to compete on both fronts next season. As a Team, we’re looking forward to welcoming him to the Sportsground and integrating him into the playing squad.” Alex Wootton says he is thrilled to sign for the club ahead of the new campaign. “I am delighted to be joining Connacht Rugby for the upcoming season. After speaking to Andy and the rest of the coaching team it’s clear that this is a team full of ambition and belief, and I want to play my part in that. I can’t wait to meet the rest of the squad and begin preparations for what I’m sure will be a very exciting season.”
LIVERPOOL hope to snatch Jack Grealish from Aston Villa while Tottenham argue over a fee for the midfielder.Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has made England under-21 star Grealish his number one transfer target during the transfer window.4 Liverpool have entered the race to sign Aston Villa star Jack Grealish this summerCredit: Getty – ContributorPochettino believes Grealish could have a similar inspirational impact to the Tottenham side as Paul Gascoigne did when he moved to White Hart Lane from Newcastle in 1988.But the Argentinian faces missing out on his priority signing because chairman Daniel Levy is attempting to force Villa to accept a cut-price £20million bid.Cash-strapped Villa, who are facing huge financial problems having failed to gain promotion back to the Premier League, value the 22-year-old at £40m.But Levy is attempting to use the Championship club’s precarious plight as leverage to drive down the transfer fee.John Terry and Aston Villa team-mate Jack Grealish pranked at chidren’s hospice with whoopee cushions4 Aston Villa value Jack Grealish at £40million but Tottenham are attempting to drive the price downCredit: Getty – Contributor4 Daniel Levy is trying to force Villa to sell Grealish on the cheap – and Liverpool are hoping to capitalise by making a quick move for the midfielderCredit: AFP – GettyThe notoriously tough negotiator has set £20m as his maximum offer and is holding firm, confident Grealish wants to make the move to North London.And with the only other interested clubs until now being Leicester and Everton, Spurs were in a powerful position in the haggling.But Sunsport understands Liverpool have now registered their interest with Villa – changing the complexion of the transfer completely.They too can dangle the carrot of working under a charismatic manager in an evolving team who are fighting for honours at the top end of the Premier League. 4FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE All the latest action, news, goals and gossip from the World CupWags of the World Cup – Who is your favourite?Most read in footballRETRACING STEPSJack Charlton’s granddaughter Emma Wilkinson ‘would love’ to visit IrelandROY RAGEFurious Roy Keane launched foul-mouthed rant at Pique over Fabregas friendshipPicturedTOP FORMBrazil icon Ronaldo soaks up sun with partner Celina Locks on yacht in FormenteraPicturedON THE PAOLPaolo Maldini shows off shredded physique at 52 while on holiday with wifeLive BlogUNITED LATESTMan Utd transfer news LIVE: All the gossip and updates from Old TraffordExclusiveLOCK CLOWNPaul Scholes flouts local lockdown rules by throwing huge 7-hour birthday bashJurgen Klopp’s side also have Champions League football to sell to Grealish, something Leicester and Everton were unable to do.Spurs now face genuine competition for the services of the Villa star, who is tipped to force his way into the England squad over the coming year.And Liverpool are understood to be willing to pay more than the £20m Spurs have tabled to bring in the midfielder.Klopp is attempting to build a squad capable of a dual challenge for the Premier League title and in Europe next season, and Grealish would be a natural fit in his plans.
The 2017 Budget was presented yesterday and as has been our practice, we will provide a framework for the average citizen to analyse the presentation and be able to follow the debate that will follow. Firstly, we must appreciate the type of economy we have so we can decide whether the measures and spending introduced by the Budget will assist the economy to deliver what the Government stated at the beginning of its term: the “good life”.We have what is called a “mixed economy” – one that combines characteristics of market, command and traditional economies. It benefits from the advantages of all three while suffering from some of the disadvantages. While market economies stress the role of business as the “engine of growth” and the operation of the market using supply and demand to set prices of the goods we buy, the Government has a critical role to play in strategic areas from a “command” standpoint, beyond the usual regulatory role it plays.The “command economy” in its extreme form was introduced by the People’s National Congress (PNC) in the 1970s when the Government nationalised 80 per cent of the economy and private industry utilising market forces were miniaturised. This was reversed from 1989 when most of the nationalised industries were privatised. The Government was now supposed to perform three major “mixed economy” functions, in which the annual budget plays three critical roles.These are to allocate or encourage the allocation of resources in the most efficient manner to deliver growth and development; to redistribute the national wealth in a more equitable fashion; and finally, to collect and spend revenues for the national weal. Thus, with the present Budget, we should first look for measures introduced to deliver “growth and development”.Over the last few months, the Government met the Private Sector organisations, which uniformly informed the former of the low level of activity into which the economy had sunk. They recommended what has been the standard policy in the toolkit of mixed-economy governments – stimulus of the economy. These had been proposed and successfully implemented from the Great Depression by the economist Lord Keynes. But the policies had fallen into disfavour with the introduction of free-market fundamentalism from the late seventies. But with the world economic collapse in 2007, the ideas of Keynes have come back into vogue.So, more granularly, we should look for policies that would encourage spending in the economy. Typically, taxes by the Government on businesses discourage their expansion while subsidies encourage it. Taxes should, therefore, be reduced so that more money remains with businesses and citizens. These funds can then be spent to initiate a virtuous and ever-increasing cycle of demand stimulating production. Interestingly, this will generate overall increased tax collection by the Government on the larger amount of economic activity. While the Government has said there would be no new taxes, that would not be enough: there needs to be substantial tax cuts to have the desired, stimulatory effect.The Government can also encourage investments in identified areas of the economy through appropriate policies. Take the sugar industry where the Government has closed Wales Estate and will soon close another three that will result in 7000 workers losing their jobs. In addition to those workers not earning incomes to even live a “subsistence life” much less the “good life”, the Government would not be collecting taxes from those incomes nor revenues from the sugar industry it owns. Wales was supposed to become the model for transitioning “sugar workers” into independent “farmers” of crops that would deliver greater revenues and taxes. We should scrutinise the Budget for these policies.In terms of the redistributive function, it is elementary economics that the pie must be made larger for effective, sustainable redistribution. We must scrutinise the Budget to discern whether redistribution outweighs stimulation and for equitable Government spending across all groups. That would be the surest way for a further contraction of the economy and increased social tensions.
Dear Editor,Every day that passes confirms more and more that the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) has no interest in investigating organised crimes for which it was established. It is becoming clearer with each passing day that this Unit’s agenda is to execute the diktats of politicians to do hatchet jobs on identified persons. This sinister mission of SOCU was unwittingly made clear by no other than its Head, Mr Sydney James, whose remarks were carried in separate and different stories published in the local media on May 2.In one of the articles, it is reported that Mr James indicated that SOCU has not been requested to investigate the 476 pounds of gold which was alleged to have left Guyana illegally and stolen in Cura?ao. The estimated worth of this gold is US$11.5 million. This is approximately GY$2.5 billion. One does not have to be a rocket scientist to conclude that the disappearance of this gold is part of an organised criminal enterprise.However, SOCU has been instructed to investigate a concocted and contrived criminal case of missing law books worth US$2000 and to institute a criminal charge, which can never be proven, in relation thereto. In another article, the same Mr James is quoted as lamenting the delay in receiving legal advice in respect of investigations being done by SOCU. All of the investigations listed by Mr James in that article are politically directed.Again, Mr James has blissfully exposed that legal advice is viewed not as a fundamental facet of the investigations of SOCU but is more of an obstacle and hindrance. It is clear, therefore, that SOCU’s priority is not a fairness and legality in their investigations but is to do a hatchet job and institute criminal charges as quickly as possible.In my case, the alacrity was unprecedented. I was called in for questioning by SOCU on Monday, April 24, 2017. I served SOCU with a High Court Order on April 25, preventing them from seizing the books. On April 26, the file was sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for legal advice. On April 27, I was charged! Clearly, there was no delay in getting advice in my case.On April 27 in court, my lawyers requested full disclosure of all statements and evidence to be made to the defence on the next court date, May 9. On Tuesday, a letter was written to the Special Prosecutor reminding him of this request. I also spoke to him in person on Tuesday. He told me he does not have all the statements yet. On Wednesday, he responded, in writing and informed me that “investigations are not yet completed”!! So, in their haste, they charged me without statements and without the investigations even being completed!! What if the continuing investigations unearth evidence that is exculpatory? Do you really think they will bring forth this evidence, withdraw the charge and suffer the consequential public embarrassment? Of course not!!Clearly, this matter is about political vengeance and vendetta and has nothing to do with justice and fairness. In this political climate, it may not be insignificant that the Special Prosecutor is the brother of a sitting Minister of the Government.I call upon the Special Prosecutor and SOCU to use the same speed referred to above in getting those statements ready and available and conclude the investigations before the next court date and be prepared to proceed with their case at the same speed, as well.Sincerely,Mohabir Anil Nandlall, MPAttorney-at-Law
Taal evacuees make the most of ‘unusual’ clothing donations, leaves online users laughing Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Deandre Ayton shines as Suns pound Knicks Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia PLAY LIST 00:56Heavy 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 award03:05Malakanyang bilib sa Phivolcs | Chona Yu01:26Homes destroyed after Taal Volcano eruption Duke’s Zion Williamson, right, poses for photographs with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after being selected by the New Orleans Pelicans as the first pick during the NBA basketball draft Thursday, June 20, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)NEW YORK — Zion Williamson plays with force and ferocity, a Hulk in hightops who looks like he’d never show a soft side.Draft night proved otherwise.ADVERTISEMENT Crucial stretch LATEST STORIES Rio’s unsafe Olympic Park ordered closed by Brazilian judge Williamson was the No. 1 pick of the New Orleans Pelicans — a surprise to nobody who watched basketball this past season. But afterward he couldn’t hide his emotions, even though he along with everyone else knew what would happen Thursday night.“Because I love the game of basketball,” he said. “You can hear people say things like, ‘Oh, that it was likely I was going to go No. 1.’ But I guess you don’t know until you actually go through it. Hearing my name called and I was able to make it on stage without a tear, shake the commissioner’s hand, but in the interview my mom was standing beside me, and my emotions just took over.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsThere might be tears of joy in New Orleans, too, after the Pelicans were able to get the Duke powerhouse who is considered one of the most exciting prospects in years.The 6-foot-7, 285-pounder compiled a career worth of highlights into just one season, becoming the third freshman to be voted player of the year by The Associated Press. 11 nabbed for shabu, drug den busted in Maguindanao Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? His assault on the rims made him a favorite of college basketball fans, but his game is more than just dunks. Williamson averaged 22.6 points and 8.9 rebounds while shooting 68% from the field.Wearing a white suit, he hugged members of his family and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after his name was called first at Barclays Center.Williamson will step into an open position in New Orleans, which recently agreed to trade All-Star Anthony Davis, the last freshman to win the AP award, to the Los Angeles Lakers.“I’m going to do anything to win. I’m just going to do anything to win,” Williamson said.The Memphis Grizzlies also quickly addressed a positional need by taking Murray State’s Ja Morant with the No. 2 pick. The Grizzlies agreed to trade Mike Conley, their longtime point guard, to Utah a day earlier.ADVERTISEMENT Solon urges Solgen to reconsider quo warranto petition vs ABS-CBN MOST READ They got a good replacement in Morant, who led Division I with 10 assists per game as a sophomore while averaging 24.5 points.“I have some big shoes to fill in Mike Conley,” Morant said. “He’s a great player. I wish him the best. Like I said before, it just means the Grizzlies see a lot in me.”RJ Barrett then made it two Duke freshmen within the top-three picks when the New York Knicks took the guard who actually edged out Williamson to lead the Atlantic Coast Conference in scoring. Knicks fans hoped they would get Williamson after finishing with the worst record in the league but seemed happy to end up with Barrett, loudly cheering and chanting “RJ! RJ!” when the pick was announced.Barrett was also in tears after landing with the team he hoped would pick him.De’Andre Hunter of national champion Virginia was taken fourth but won’t be teaming up with Williamson. The Pelicans acquired the rights to the pick in the Davis deal but agreed to trade it shortly before the draft to Atlanta. The original trade can’t be official until July 6, so Hunter was outfitted with a Lakers hit and the draft board behind the stage listed the pick as belonging to the Lakers.The Cleveland Cavaliers then took Vanderbilt guard Darius Garland, who played in just five games because of a knee injury.Then it was another pick who won’t be playing for the team that made it, with Jarrett Culver taken at No. 6 by Phoenix with a pick that the Suns agreed to trade to Minnesota.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments Olympic rings arrive in host city on barge into Tokyo Bay Steaming fissures on Taal Volcano Island spotted
“We have a really dedicated staff who ensure these students are successful,” said Carlye Olsen, director of accountability, staff development and educational technology at the district. “They take responsibility for teaching the students.” At face-value, Whittier Union’s percentage is lower than last year, but state education officials cautioned against comparisons. The 2006-07 version of the CELDT is different than previous versions because it is tougher and scores are based on a different scale, said Deb Sigman, state testing director with the California Department of Education. “We eliminated some of the pieces, we’ve shortened some of the test,” she said. “We’ve modified the test to be more rigorous and in alignment with the California English Language Development Standards.” Because of that, comparing scores year-to-year would be an inaccurate reflection of student performance, she said. Most school representatives say despite what may look like lower test scores, the latest version of the exam is actually a better gauge of English proficiency – exactly what state education officials were trying to accomplish. “Just by nature of being more rigorous, \ really gets at the heart of what students know and are able to do,” said Elyse Sullivan, assistant superintendent of instructional services at Whittier City School District. Twenty-two percent of test-takers there scored at advanced levels. “We were not thrilled with this year’s results but we understand the test has changed,” Sullivan said. She pointed out that a tougher test will make for better preparation among students attempting reclassification as fluent English speakers. At Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District – where 30 percent of English learners scored at advanced levels – similar sentiments were echoed. “I’m never comfortable if students aren’t achieving at the highest level, but I understand what they are doing with the CELDT, so I understand percentage changes from last year,” Superintendent Ginger Shattuck said. State officials hope the new scale will more accurately reflect where students should be when they reach fluency. “Our goal is to better prepare all students with strong communication skills in English so they can effectively participate in school and successfully compete in the work force,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell said in a statement. For complete test results visit http://celdt.cde.ca.gov. firstname.lastname@example.org (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2109 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! WHITTIER – A majority of local school districts are above the statewide average of K-12 English-language learners scoring at advanced levels in proficiency testing, according to exam results released Thursday. Out of nine Whittier-area school districts, six saw more than 32 percent of its English-language learners scoring in the “advanced” or “early advanced” categories of the California English Language Development Test taken last year. Those two levels are the highest a student can score on the exam, which measures English proficiency among non-fluent speakers. Top results came from Whittier Union High School District, where 53 percent of test-takers scored in the advanced levels.
Sam Allardyce’s side evaded the drop to the Championship, at the expense of Newcastle Sunderland are revelling in the relegation of fierce rivals Newcastle United.An inspired end to the season saw the Black Cats evade the drop, sending the Magpies down to the Championship.And one Sunderland fan is still overjoyed at his side sealing Premier League safety, deciding to really rub it in by getting in touch with Newcastle’s club megastore.Watch the hilarious clip below… 1
1 Costa is emptying his Surrey mansion while he remains ‘on strike’ in Brazil Diego Costa is ploughing on with decision not to return to Chelsea by calling in the removal men to empty his Surrey home. Costa has also had all the utilities switched off as he remains in Brazil, ignoring club orders to return to training, according to the Daily Mail. The Spain international was told by boss Antonio Conte via text that he had no future at the club earlier this summer. Costa wants a move back to his former club Atletico Madrid but the Blues are demanding £60million for him – far more than the Spaniards are willing to pay. Elsewhere it has emerged that Marseille could move for Costa if a deal with Atleti fails to materialise before the transfer window closes. Marseille president Jacques-Henri Eyraud said: “I like his character, his grit and his sense of combat. He would fit in very well at OM. However, he has a complicated contractual situation.“If a player ticks all the boxes, then we showed that we were able to do the transactions. Why not? But it [the deal] must at least meet certain conditions. Nothing is impossible.“I assure nothing [to the fans] for the end of the market. It is a sensitive subject. But one thing is certain, we are actively searching for a striker.”
Rashford has four goals in his last four games Harry Maguire, Marcus Rashford and Victor Lindelof have all been passed fit to start for Manchester United against Bournemouth.The trio had been doubts for the trip to the Vitality Stadium after picking up knocks in the midweek Carabao Cup win over Chelsea. 1 Getty Images But they have all recovered in time to play in Saturday’s lunchtime clash with the Cherries, which you can listen to live on talkSPORT.Paul Pogba’s ankle problem means he is still missing for United, while Axel Tuanzebe, Nemanja Matic and Luke Shaw also remain sidelined.It is the same XI which started last Sunday’s Premier League win at Norwich.Bournemouth, meanwhile, make one change from the side which drew 0-0 with Watford in their last Premier League game.Harry Wilson, on loan at the Vitality from Liverpool, comes into the side and Arnaut Groeneveld drops to the bench.CONFIRMED TEAMSBournemouth: Ramsdale, Rico, Ake, Cook, Smith, Billing, Lerma, Wilson, Fraser, King, Wilson. Subs: Simon Francis, Chris Mepham, Arnaut Groeneveld, Lewis Cook, Lloyd Kelly, Dominic Solanke, Artur Boruc.Man United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Young; Fred, McTominay, Pereira; James, Rashford, Martial. Subs: Brandon Williams, James Garner, Marcos Rojo, Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard, Mason Greenwood, Sergio Romero.