Succumbing to intense pressure, Pakistan today dropped Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir from the ODI series against England but strongly defended them, saying they opted out because of “mental torture” and will get all the support to clear their names in the ‘spot-fixing’ scandal.The dramatic development came after a series of meetings between the ICC, the Pakistan Cricket Board and the England and Wales Cricket Board officials in the backdrop of the host players’ refusal to play against the implicated cricketers.As the three players met High Commissioner Wajid S Hasan in London, team manager Yawar Saeed made the announcement that they have been left out from the squad for the two Twenty20s and five one-dayers against England starting Sunday.”The Twenty20 squad will remain what it is here this morning, that is 13 people. We have asked for replacements for the three who have left,” he told reporters in Taunton where the team is playing a warm-up match against Somerset.But within a few hours, the Pakistan High Commissioner said that the players had opted out and had not been dropped from the squad.More questioning by Scotland Yard A top PCB source said that the trio would be summoned for a fresh round of interrogation by the Scotland Yard later in the day and will remain in London till the questioning is completed.”They have been summoned today and will be accompanied this time by Pakistan Cricket Board’s legal advisor Tafazzul Rizvi and the English barrister hired by the Board in London,” the source said.advertisementThe Pakistan High Commissioner defended the players and insisted that they remain innocent until proven guilty. He also rejected reports that the players are due to be grilled by the Scotland Yard today and said the three would remain in England for the investigations.”They are extremely disturbed with what has happened in the past one week. They have maintained that they are innocent and on account of the mental torture that has hugely affected them, they are not in the right frame of mind to play any further,” Hasan told reporters.”Therefore, they have requested the Pakistan Cricket Board not to consider them for the rest of the matches until their names are cleared,” he added.Asked whether the passports of the three players had been confiscated by the Scotland Yard, Hasan said, “Their passports are with the team manager.”Players low on morale: Hasan Hasan said the players morale is low but they would not run away from the investigations.”They are here, they are not running away. They are innocent and they are defending their innocence. They are upright young men, in fact one of them (Mohammad Aamir) created a record of taking 50 wickets in the shortest time. We will give them whatever support they might need,” he said.”Serious charges have been levelled against them and they have to defend themselves. They will even go to court to for that. There have been such incidents in the past. You remember what happened between Imran Khan and Ian Botham, Imran won the case and we shall Inshallah stand vindicated”, Hasan said.Hasan was referring to a 1996 instance when Imran defended himself in a libel action brought by Botham and Allan Lamb over ball-tampering.Asked to comment on the ‘News of the World’ sting operation on a bookie which started the furore and the photographs of the players with the alleged bookmaker, Hasan said, “I have seen many pictures. I have been a journalist all my life. So, I know what pictures mean.”Team seeks replacements Earlier, Saeed said replacements would be sought for the three players.”When we play the one-day internationals we will be asking for replacements to make the squad up to 16,” he said.Saeed, however, refused to answer questions on the Scotland Yard investigation for which the players’ phones have reportedly been confiscated.”I cannot answer anything on their behalf because investigations are being made by Scotland Yard and the ICC and others. The game must go on, cricket will be played at its best,” he said.PCB was under intense pressure to oust the tainted trio with both the International Cricket Council and the England and Wales Cricket Board pressing for the implicated players’ removal.A source said that in the past 24 hours, the PCB had been told in clear terms by ICC that the three players cannot play in the Twenty20 and one-day series against England until the investigations are over.England board welcomes exclusion of tainted players advertisementECB Chief Giles Clarke welcomed the ouster of the players ahead of the series.”I look forward to the series being played in the spirit that matches between England and Pakistan are always played in,” he said.However, Pakistan’s Sports Minister Aijaz Jakhrani said the players may play the one-day series.Jakhrani said the three players, who allegedly took money from a bookie to bowl no balls during the Lord’s Test against England last week, will be in London to “cooperate” with the Scotland Yard’s investigation into the ‘spot-fixing’ scandal.”They are not playing because they have probably gone to answer the investigating team. They are not at the venue where the matches are being held, so they would not be playing. Probably they will not play Twenty20 matches but they might be back for the one-dayers,” Jakhrani said.
<p><img src="http://a37.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/A2037/IMG2280.jpg" alt="first_img" />Although the Strathmore Bath and Tennis Club swim team is off to a 0-3 start, second-year coach Christie Theiss is encouraged as her swimmers’ times are improving. Theiss realizes that many of her swimmers have not competed at a high level yet, and is hoping that she can help them become more competitive as the summer rolls along. Thus far she likes what she has seen from her group. “Our main goal is to make everyone a better swimmer,” said Theiss, a former varsity competitor at Old Bridge High School, whose 80-member team includes experienced competitors as well as novices. “We want to have some fun and hopefully win a few meets.” A junior accounting major at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, Theiss is also a lifeguard at the club. The bulk of the Strathmore team is made up of younger swimmers, which makes it difficult to compete in the upper age groups. For instance, the team has only one athlete, Nikki Cannella, competing in the 15-18-year-old division. The coach is hoping her younger competitors will help build the nucleus of a strong team. Some of Strathmore’s top swimmers are as follows: • 8 and under: Matthew Cohen, Kathleen Cogland, Katelyn Cutting, Geena Mahler, Shawn Orzycowski and Nicholas Rocco. • 9-10: David Cherossky, Danielle Driscoll, Sean Gleason, Amanda Nuebart and Rachel Williams. • 11-12: Peter Bozzo, Nicole Driscoll, Caroline Faughnan, Jeremy Maurer, Melissa Mayer and Nicholas Williams. • 13-14: Lauren Fohn, Danielle Gleason and Ryan Moore. Theiss is pleased with the effort she has seen thus far from her team, and is confident that their hard work will translate into some wins as the summer season progresses. “Everyone has been working hard at practice, and we’re starting to see the results,” said Theiss, who is assisted by Becca Wilson and Steve Smith. “We’ve been very pleased with the team.” — Warren Rappleyea<img src="http://a37.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/A2037/IMG10485.jpg" alt="last_img" /></p>
<p><img src="http://c68.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/C2068/IMG1715.jpg" alt="first_img" />Champions Bayern Munich have not spent tens of millions of euros on new players or appointed a big-name coach in the close season but they are still firm favourites to win the Bundesliga, which kicks off on Friday.The Bavarians, who host fellow Champions League club Hoffenheim in the curtain raiser, have won the last six Bundesliga titles, but have only added talented 23-year-old Leon Goretzka to their squad in the close season.Bayern are hoping to hit the ground running in the league after a lacklustre 1-0 German Cup first round win against amateurs Drochtersen/Assel last week.“We have room for improvement and have not been together as a team for too long (because of the World Cup),” winger Arjen Robben said this week. “What we need now is match practice but we are ready for the start.”Hoffenheim, in coach Julian Nagelsmann’s last season in charge before his move to RB Leipzig, have their own lofty goals this season and are seen as dark horses in the title race.Yet they have yet to beat Bayern in Munich in the Bundesliga.“I think this will be a really hard game,” Robben said. “They are in really good form and had really high scores in the run-up to the season start.”Hoffenheim crushed Kaiserslautern 6-1 in their own German Cup first round tie.“We need to be there from the very first minute otherwise it could be an uncomfortable evening,” added the Dutchman.New Bayern coach Niko Kovac will have his work cut out to follow Jupp Heynckes, who has gone back into retirement after taking over in October and leading them to their sixth straight title. Heynckes had coached them to the treble in 2013.Kovac should at least be able to count on the scoring ability of striker Robert Lewandowski, who grabbed a hat-trick in the German Super Cup win over Eintracht Frankfurt earlier this month and also netted the winner in the German Cup.Stiffer competition on the pitch, however, would give a shot in the arm to the Bundesliga, which is battling for players, money and viewers with other European leagues.Italy’s Serie A, for example, showed it remains a desirable destination for top talent when Juventus signed Portuguese Cristiano Ronaldo from Real Madrid amid a whirlwind of media coverage.Bayern’s dominance may be good for the team’s own bank balance but Bundesliga bosses warned earlier this year that the league was at risk of “falling away” from its big competitors in Europe.Last season’s runners-up Schalke 04 are one of the teams hoping to spice up this season’s title race and kick off their season at VfL Wolfsburg on Saturday while Borussia Dortmund host RB Leipzig a day later.<img src="http://c68.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/C2068/IMG14232.jpg" alt="last_img" /></p>
<p><img src="http://a23.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/2023/IMG16382.jpg" alt="first_img" />‘Gen.’ Mary T. Broh, head of the presidential taskforce to beautify the city, has recommended to the Ministry of Health and the Medical and Dental Board the immediate closure of Mawah Clinic for its unsanitary environment.She told a team of Ministry of Health officials assigned to the taskforce that the clinic should be closed to enable the management to carry out a full cleanup exercise.Mawah Clinic is a well-known private medical facility in Vai Town, Monrovia, offering a wide range of medical services, from lab tests to surgery. Speaking to reporters shortly after a tour of the facilities yesterday, Madam Broh said it was unfortunate for the most famous Mawah Clinic in Vai Town to be filthy, with loads of trash including needles, testing kits and syringes.Madam Broh said improper disposal of needles, testing kits and syringes is dangerous for children and adults in the community.Broh said she wants health authorities to urgently intervene by closing the clinic until the management improves sanitary conditions at the clinic. “We were around the entrance of Mawah Clinic last week and I thought by now they would have cleaned the place and sanitize the facilities to give it a facelift, which the management has not done. This is the place that has doctors and nurses who have been to medical school but what is happening to sanitation and hygiene at the place is unknown,” she said.Madam Broh said the doctors and nurses at the clinic are very reckless in observing hygiene and other health related rules, which is precarious for those seeking medical attention there.“This is the place that thousands of Liberians and even foreign residents get healthcare services, and they need to have or observe good hygiene. With the present unhealthy condition, there is no need for anyone to seek medication at Mawah Clinic,” she said.Madam Broh said 99.9% of the Liberian population deserves better and regretted that there are people in the country who will like to see a permanent class of people in abject poverty so that they can hold on to their power base.“This will not happen because some of us are here to eradicate the problem. We will not have school cafeterias, milk facilities, among others, filled with maggots and worms,” she added.Madam Broh said she is back and will continue to work tirelessly to clean the city because “I believe in the beautification of Liberia, that all of us can live better and clean.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)<img src="http://a36.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/A2036/IMG707.jpg" alt="last_img" /></p>
<p><img src="http://b54.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/B2054/IMG13365.jpg" alt="first_img" />LATEST STORIES LOOK: Taal Volcano island 2 days after eruption 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust Melecio, La Salle heave sigh of relief: Good thing Abando had big shoes Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next ‘Gago’ 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw Samantha Kyle Catantan flashes her gold medal. Photo from her Facebook accountMANILA, Philippines—Samantha Kyle Catantan had a masterful performance en route to the gold medal in the Women’s individual foil competition in the Asian U23 Fencing Championships Thursday in Bangkok.The Philippines’ bet ruled South Korea’s Choi Yu Min, 15-9, in the final after overcoming Japan’s Choi Minseo, 15-14, in the semifinal.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees SEA Games 2019: Filipina fencers bag gold medal in team epee PLAY LIST 01:38SEA Games 2019: Filipina fencers bag gold medal in team epee01:39SEA Games 2019: Nicanor rallies to bring home 1st fencing gold for PH02:11SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)01:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown View comments Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study MOST READ ‘People evacuated on their own’ Catantan, who reaped MVP awards in the UAAP’s junior division for University of the East, posted on Facebook about her joy of winning the top prize.“My first Asian gold medal! My heart!” said Catantan in the postThis wasn’t Catantan’s first hardware in international competition after she bagged the silver medal in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games.ADVERTISEMENT No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist<img src="http://a17.29626262.net/wp-shlf1314/2017/IMG8515.jpg" alt="last_img" /></p>