With PBA Draft coming up, Matt Salem continues to fine tune game

first_imgLATEST STORIES Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew “It’s a good experience, it’s an international tournament and it shows that I can work that I can eventually use in the PBA,” said Salem. “It’s going to take a lot of time to be able to work on those skills I need to develop.”“Offensive-wise, I got my shooting, I can attack when I want on and off the ball screen. I think I could develop a few more skills after seeing these international players.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy 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 award “I’m just working out for the last couple of months and I have to get ready for the draft pretty much,” said Salem Friday at Studio City here.Salem is part of the Philippine representatives the iECO Green Warriors in the Asia League The Terrific 12 where they played against the top club teams from China, Japan, Chinese-Taipei, and Korea.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissAlthough iECO went winless in Group C and failing to enter the semifinals after two games, Salem was a solid contributor for the team and was able to display his deft stroke from outside.Salem averaged 12.5 points and three triples per game for the Green Warriors, who was formed just weeks before the competition started on Tuesday. Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew PBA IMAGESMACAU—Matt Salem knows reaching the PBA is the goal for any aspiring Filipino basketball player, and he’s doing everything ito equip himself with all the right tools that would be useful once he steps into the big league.He’s already made a name for himself during his collegiate career as a marksman for National University and De La Salle, but he knows there’s still room to improve before submitting his name to the draft.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img View comments MOST READ Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title ONE: Team Lakay’s Kingad ready for war vs Japanese foe Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazillast_img read more

NO GO! Everton FAIL with £13m move for striker

first_img Islam Slimani Sporting Lisbon have told Everton to forget about signing star striker Islam Slimani.The Algeria international has been in stunning form this season and has found the net 16 times in 18 league appearances.It has prompted interest from the likes of Leicester and Manchester United, but Everton attempted to act first by offering £13m for the 27-year-old.However, according to Portuguese newspaper Record, that bid has been immediately rejected by Sporting.The club have no plans to sell their star forward in January as they bid secure the league title.Slimani does have a release-clause of £22m – but it can only be activated during summer transfer windows. 1last_img read more


first_imgSean Mc Gettigan Golf Classic.On Saturday 30th July it’s one of the most talked about and eagerly awaited golf classics of the year as Portsalon Golf Club stages the Sean Mc Gettigan Open Golf Classic. Apart from playing on the golden ‘’Banks’’ of the Portsalon course, entry into this competition includes one of the finest meals one could ever imagine with a wide variety of fish and meats to satisfy the taste of all who participate. Sean has gone to the extreme to ensure that everyone’s taste will be satisfied on the day. The event is a team of four and tee times are available so make sure that you are included in this magnificent event both golfing and feastingLady Captains Day Marie Gilligan’s Lady Captains prize will be staged on Saturday 23rd July. The Lady Captain has a gents members section and gents tee times on 23rd July will be from 7.30 am to 10 am and from 3 pm to 5 pm. The first tee will be reserved for the lady members and guests from 10 a.m to 3 p.m. To book contact 0749159459 or go online to portsalongolfclub.com. The Captain Donal Callaghan and members of Portsalon golf club wish Marie success on this her special day at Portsalon golf club.Presentation of prizes will take place In the clubhouse at 9 30 p.m all prize winners are asked to be in attendance.ResultsFollowing the successful open week festival of golf the Portsalon club staged open competitions on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of last week. Playing in excellent weather conditions as the sun blazed its way across the golden banks. The open events attracted large turnouts on each of the days. The results were as follows; Monday 11th the winner was Ryan Mc Gettigan (8) 43 points 2nd Sam Faulkner (12) 41 points Gross C. Garside (5) Mount Murray 32pts 3rd Connor Mc Fadden (14) 38 points. The CSS was 37 points. On Tuesday 12th the winner was Ciaran Mc Fadden (8) 43 points, 2nd Connor Mc Fadden (14) 37 points, gross Ryan Mc Gettigan (7) 26 points 3rd John Mc Cafferty City of Derry 35 points. The CSS was 34 points. On Wednesday the winner was Sam Faulkner ( ) 40 points, 2nd D P Logue (6) 39 points Gross Michael Finley (3) 33 points 3rd Colm Norris (12) Foyle 39 points Visitor Martin Colohan (5) Fort William 37 points. The CSS for home players 37 points and away players 35 points. The winner of the members competition played on Sunday in horrendous weather conditions was Brendan Cullen (13) 26 points.Events On Sunday 14th July at Portsalon Golf Club there is a members competition and on Wednesday 27th a gents open stableford competition. A time sheet is in operation for all competitions contact 0749159459 or go online to portsalongolfclub.com.Team newsThe Portsalon Donegal League team entertained Gweedore golf club in the return leg on Friday evening last. Going into this leg the Portsalon team trailed by three and half matches to one and half matches had it all to do to overturn this result. Playing in breezy conditions the Kingdom team under the leadership of John Logue came away triumphant and now go forward to the Donegal League semi final were the opposition will be Ballyliffen golf club. Dates for both the home and away legs have yet to be confirmed.FixturesOn Saturday 23rd the tee is reserved for the Lady Captain’s day, Sunday 24th there is a members competition and on Wednesday 27th July an open stableford competition. A time sheet is in operation for all competitions at Portsalon Golf Club, contact 074 91 59459 for your tee time or go online at portsalongolfclub.com Barton ShieldThe GUI Barton Shield which was staged at Portsalon recently where the following teams qualified North West vs Portrush and Foyle vs Portsewart . The play off was staged at Portsalon golf club on Sunday last, playing in extremely poor conditions as the wind and rain lashed across the course. In the play offs North West defeated Portrush by seven holes while Portstewart defeated Foyle by 2 holes. The final which was also played on Sunday afternoon and the winners was North West defeating Portstewart. North West will now play Warenpoint in the semi final at Castlerock golf club.On Line BookingMembers and visitors to Portsalon Golf Club should note that on line booking is now available for all competitions at Portsalon at the flick of a button go to portsalongolfclub.com Divot BagsMembers and visitors please note that divot bags are now available on entry to the first tee box. Please ensure that you pick up a bag and assist with the course maintenancePORTSALON GOLF CLUB NOTES was last modified: July 18th, 2011 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Portsalon Golf Club Noteslast_img read more


first_imgLovers of the cult musical movie – the Rocky Horror Picture Show – are in for a treat this week when the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny is transformed into a pop-up cinema showing the movie for one night only on Friday night!The madcap movie – famous for the massive hit ‘The Timewarp’ – has a huge international cult following and audiences are usually well-prepared to get fully involved by dressing up as characters from the movie and joining in the fun.“We’re certainly encouraging people to get into costume and join in the fun on the night. It will be an interactive cinema experience and it is not something that anybody ever forgets in a hurry,” said Lorraine Porter, captain of the Letterkenny Musical Society’s Relay for Life team who are hosting Friday night’s event. She added: “We really wanted to do something musical and fun as one of our fundraisers and The Rocky Horror Picture Show certainly fits the bill. It is just one of those shows that lives long in the memory and we’re hoping that as well as dressing up people will also bring props like water pistols and newspapers, flashlights and rubber gloves!”The LMS team captain however did stress that tickets for Friday night’s show (they cost €10 and it starts at 8pm) are strictly limited and she urged anyone interested to get in touch to book a ticket.“The Regional Cultural Centre is going to be a superb venue for this but it does have a limited number of seats and while it’s possible that there will be tickets on sale on the night, I’d really urge people to make sure they get their tickets in advance to ensure they get in. And let’s face it, this is a one-off experience that you really don’t want to be missing!”Some tickets are available at the Regional Cultural Centre or you can pre-book by sending an e.mail to lmsrockyhorror@gmail.com  ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOWS POPS UP IN LETTERKENNY! was last modified: April 9th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:letterkennyRCCRocky Horror Picture Showlast_img read more

CHAN 2020 Qualifiers: It is not yet over – Mubiru cautions players ahead of second leg

first_imgMubiru has argued players to be cautious ahead of the CHAN 2020 qualifiers second leg against Burundi. (PHOTO/File)CHAN 2020 Qualifiers-Second Round (Return Leg)Uganda vs BurundiStarTimes Stadium, LugogoSaturday, 19-10-2019 @4pmLUGOGO – The Uganda Cranes CHAN team continued with their preparations for the second leg of their qualifier against Burundi this coming weekend, with a double training session on Tuesday.This was their third day of training for the Cranes having kicked off preps on Sunday morning.All the 26 players that were summoned last week took part including Krizestom Ntambi and Allan Kayiwa who have just returned from a 1-0 friendly win over Ethiopia on Sunday.Speaking after the morning session, head coach Abdallah Mubiru thanked God that the preparations were going on smoothly.“Thank God the training went smoothly, noted Mubiru.“We now have everyone in training after the arrival of Krizestom Ntambi and Allan Kayiwa who were with the senior side.“I am pleased that all players are working so hard and the truth is that they are making our job of selecting who plays on Saturday difficult.”Uganda holds a monstrous advantage going into the game on Saturday following their 3-0 victory in the first leg played in Bujumbura-Burundi last month.Despite the healthy caution, Mubiru has cautioned his players not to get complacent as he expects Burundi to give their all on Saturday.“We are trying to avoid a situation where the players get complacent and think the tie is already won, continued Mubiru.“This is going to be an entirely different game from the one we played in Bujumbura. We expect them (Burundi) to come all guns blazing knowing they need to overcome the deficit.“That means we have to remain focus and not to get complacent so as by the end of 90 minutes, we are still holding our advantage.”Uganda is attempting to reach a fifth consecutive CHAN tournament.After losing to Tanzania in the second round of qualification and in the process, failing to reach the first edition of the finals in 2009, the Cranes have not failed to seal a spot in any of the last four finals (2011, 2014, 2016 and 2018).To reach the last edition in Morocco, Uganda defeated South Sudan 5-1 on aggregate in the first round of qualifiers before hanging on to overcome Rwanda 3-2 in the second round.For Burundi, they are attempting to reach a second CHAN finals’ tournament having done so in South Africa 2014 where they were eliminated in the group stages after finishing third in Group D.To reach the second round, Uganda took care of Somali while Burundi eliminated South Sudan.The list of players training ahead of the gameGoalkeepersCharles Lukwago (KCCA), James Alitho (URA), Joel Mutakubwa (Kyetume)DefendersPaul Willa (Police), Ashraf Mandela (URA), Arafat Galiwango (Police), John Revita (KCCA), Mustapha Kizza (KCCA), Halid Lwaliwa (Vipers), Paul Mbowa (URA), Mustafa Mujuzi (Proline)MidfieldersNicholas Kasozi (KCCA), Said Kyeyune (URA), Yusuf Ssozi (Police), David Owori (SC Villa), Kirizestom Ntambi (Wakiso Giants), Allan Okello (KCCA), Shafique Kagimu (URA), Vianne Ssekajjugo (Wakiso Giants), Karim Watambala (Vipers SC), Bright Anukani (Proline), Ibrahim Orit (Mbarara City)StrikersFahad Bayo (Vipers), Dan Sserunkuma (Vipers), Mike Mutyaba (KCCA), Allan Kayiwa (Vipers SC).Comments Tags: abdallah mubiruAllan KayiwaCHAN 2020Krizestom NtambitopUganda Craneslast_img read more

Malaysia Airlines 777 shot down

first_imgA Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-200ER with 298 aboard has been shot down over Ukraine.According to Aviation Herald registration 9M-MRD performing flight MH17 from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur with 283 passengers and 15 crew, was en-route at FL330 about 50nm northwest of Donetsk (Ukraine) when the transponder signal was lost at FL330 at position N48.56 E37.21 at 13:43Z.Unconfirmed video footage is now on Youtube showing the burning wreckage.Photos of wreckage of a Malaysia Airlines’ aircraft have been tweeted and are shown to the right.Malaysia Airlines has confirmed the flight has crashed. The airspace over Ukraine has now been closed to all commercial traffic.Malaysian authorites have listed the passengers as; 154 Dutch, 43 Malaysian, 27 Australian, 12 Indonesian, 9 British, 4 German, 4 Belgian, 3 Philippine, 1 Canadian and 41 unknown citizens.last_img read more

What are you doing to commemorate International Mandela Day?

first_imgJohannesburg, Thursday 14 July 2016 – Former President Nelson Mandela remains one of the most enduring symbols of the South African nation brand.  He embodied all the qualities our country stood for – forgiveness, patience, tolerance, peace and humility – he demonstrated that precious quality of Ubuntu throughout his life.President Mandela’s life of service is now celebrated the world over on International Mandela Day, observed annually on 18 July as decreed by the United Nations.International Mandela Day in 2016 marks the seventh annual Mandela Day where people from every corner of the globe unite to give of themselves, do better and give back to their community for 67 minutes.This International Mandela Day, what will you be doing in the spaces around you to make the world a better place?The international day of observation was inspired by Mandela’s call, made in 2008, for the next generation to take on the burden of leadership aimed at addressing the world’s social injustices.“It’s in your hands now” – Nelson MandelaBrand South Africa’s CEO Mr Kingsley Makhubela, reflecting on the significance of International Mandela Day 2016 said, “The best tribute citizens of South Africa can pay to the late icon of our country is to live a life of service, active citizenship and continually striving to make South Africa a better place.  We should be guided by his view that South Africa should be better for future generations.  Nation building is a continuous process and South Africa needs us all.”The CEO of GEM David Shields says, “Mandela Day is more than just a celebration of Madiba’s life and what he did for South Africa, it’s a global movement to help positively impact the lives of those around you; no matter how small the task.”So what can you do this year to make your 67 minutes fruitful?That’s easy; pick something community based that you’re passionate about, make sure you’re signed up to GEM, put your game face on and start doing your bit for a better South Africa!What is GEM?GEM (Going the Extra Mile) Project is a non-profit org. based in South Africa and co-founded by David Shields and Camilo Ramada. The two conceived a mobile app, called GEM, which uses a mobile payment platform to reward volunteer service in local communities. Operating on an easy-to-use smartphone app and/or USSD technology, users can explore a variety of local opportunities and sign-up to volunteer with the ones they like best.In exchange for their service volunteers earn “GEMs”, which is the app’s currency. Each GEM is the equivalent to one South African rand and can be used to buy goods and services which include electricity tokens, movie tickets, groceries, and even data. The project supports almost more than two dozen social organisations and runs over 30 activations in Johannesburg and Cape Town every month.The best thing about GEM is that it inspires a volunteerism lifestyle. It gives users an opportunity to improve the lives of those around them; using people’s free time proactively with a reward element attached. Everyone, irrespective of which side of the economic spectrum they fall, can give back and get something in return. Truly, a win-win situation.For the second year, GEM Project will be running a massive Mandela Day campaign in partnership with Brand South Africa and the PlayYourPart campaign. The merger serves as a way to make giving back to your community an easy task for anyone. Simply log on and decide where, how and for whom you want to make the world a better place.Brand South Africa is committed to creating a progressive and compelling brand image for South Africa. PlayYourPart is a social network that links individuals willing to volunteer their services or provide financial assistance with community development organisations.Now it’s time to put in the work. Visit www.gemproject.org to download the app on your smartphone or search “GEM Project” on your app store; it’s compatible with Android, iOS and BlackBerry 10 and takes less than a minute to sign-up. Alternatively you can register via USSD by dialing * 120 * 4361 # to get started.You don’t need to be a millionaire or a superhero to make a difference. Your time alone is a beautiful thing to give.Follow the conversation on  #SANationBrand or #MandelaDay2016last_img read more

Torrefaction: Roasting agricultural, forest and animal residues to produce “green coal” with improved properties and value

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest What is torrefaction?Torrefaction is a thermochemical treatment process for biomass upgrading that occurs at a temperature range of 390 to 570 degrees F at near atmospheric pressure, in the absence of oxygen, and at a reactor residence time of 10 to 30 minutes, or longer. During torrefaction, water and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are removed, and hemicellulose fractions of the biomass are degraded leaving cellulose and lignin in the biomass. The final product looks similar to charcoal. How to torrefy biomass?The first step in biomass torrefaction involves feeding raw biomass into the torrefaction system. The particle size may vary depending on the feedstock source; however, a uniform size will give the best results. The biomass is then slowly heated in the absence of oxygen in the torrefaction chamber to reach a temperature of 390 to 570 degrees F, which is maintained for up to 10 to 30 minutes. This partially decomposes the biomass and releases some volatile matter, including water, VOCs and hemicellulose. The remaining solid portion is the torrefied biomass, which is the main final product. The volatiles, vapors and gases produced during torrefaction can be burned in the combustion section, producing heat that can be used to preheat the incoming raw biomass for torrefaction. The torrefied biomass can be pelletized to obtain high density, uniform biomass pellets (Figure 1). Why torrefy biomass?Agricultural and forest residues, energy crops, and animal litter can be used as a feedstock to generate bioenergy, such as ethanol, heat and electricity. However, these feedstocks usually have a low bulk density and energy density. Biomass upgrading techniques, such as torrefaction, change biomass properties for improved storage, transportation, pretreatment, and conversion.The advantages of torrefied biomass over raw biomass include:Reduced moisture content and improved hydrophobicity — Torrefaction drastically reduces the moisture content of the biomass, resulting in a relatively hydrophobic product that absorbs and retains less water during storage, reducing biomass deterioration.  The low moisture content also decreases transportation cost.Increased brittleness — Torrefaction destroys the biomass cell structure, which increases the brittleness of the material. Biomass usually needs to be reduced in size for use, such as fuels, chemicals, or other materials. Increased brittleness of torrefied biomass decreases the energy required for grinding by 80-90%.Higher energy content per unit weight — The calorific value of the biomass typically increases from 5,000-7,000 BTUs per pound to 8,500-10,500 BTUs per pound. This makes it an ideal candidate to be used in thermochemical plants as well as household burners.Homogeneous solid with less smoke — Raw biomass have a wide range of moisture content and VOCs depending on the type, source and harvest conditions. Torrefaction significantly reduces the moisture content and VOCs, resulting in a homogeneous solid fuel that generates less smoke during combustion.Elimination of odor and pathogenic microorganisms — Torrefaction involves heat treatment, which can eliminate odors and pathogenic microorganisms that arise from decomposition of biomass during storage.Torrefied biomass can be further densified into pellets. Torrefied pellets have a more uniform size and form, which results in better flowability compared to the raw biomass and improves handling and storage. Furthermore, torrefied biomass pellets have several benefits compared to the raw biomass pellets, including:Improved durability — The biomass contains a higher fraction of hot lignin immediately after torrefaction, which helps it to be compacted, with strong adhesion between the biomass particles, improving pellet durability and handling properties.Increased bulk density — Torrefied pellets usually have a higher bulk density (47 to 53 pounds per cubic foot) compared to raw biomass pellets (34 to 44 pounds per cubic foot).Ultimately, torrefaction of biomass and densification reduces dry matter losses and enhances handling and transportation logistics. Applications of torrefied biomassTorrefied biomass/pellets can be used for different applications, such as:An alternative to coal in conventional coal fired plants — Torrefied biomass are renewable, and have calorific value (8,500-10,500 BTU per pound) comparable to coal (~11,000 BTU per pound), and lower ash and mineral contents.Feedstock for biofuel production — Torrefied biomass primarily contains cellulose, which can be converted to biofuel, especially through thermochemical conversion routes.Soil amendment — Torrefied biomass has almost all the minerals and nutrients in the biomass and thus can be land applied as a soil amendment. How much does it cost to torrefy biomass?Torrefaction of biomass requires a reactor that provides inert reaction conditions without oxygen. Such a facility, at commercial scale, requires a large capital investment. Torrefaction operational costs vary considerably depending on the scale of the facility, feedstock type, desired torrefaction conditions, and potential use of heat or VOCs for other purposes, such as offsetting heating costs. Torrefaction costs of between $17 and $42 per ton of torrefied biomass have been reported.Dr. Ajay Shah is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering of The Ohio State University.  He can be reached at shah.971@osu.edu and (330) 263-3858.  This column is provided by the OSU Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, OSU Extension, Ohio Agricultural Research & Development Center, and the College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Scienceslast_img read more

David Warner annoyed with abusive, derogatory New Zealand crowd

first_imgAustralia vice captain David Warner has accused New Zealand fans of going “too far” in their abuse of the tourists during the two-Test series which concluded on Wednesday.Both captains paid tribute to the spirit in which the series, which Australia won 2-0, had been played but Warner suggested that goodwill had not extended to the stands at Wellington’s Basin Reserve and Hagley Oval in Christchurch. (Also read: Steve Smith relieved as Brendon McCullum retires from international cricket) “Some of the stuff was pretty derogatory and vulgar,” Warner told reporters at Sydney Airport on Thursday.”You get your odd banter here or there, but when they’re talking about people’s families it takes it a little bit too far.”We don’t expect to wake up and be hounded for six or seven hours,” he added. (Steve Smith wants Australia to keep enjoying life at the top)”The upsetting thing was I know if my two daughters were in the crowd, I wouldn’t want them listening to that kind of stuff.”While New Zealand have prided themselves on playing the game in the right spirit over the last couple of years, Australia have maintained a reputation for on-field aggression.Australia captain Steve Smith was fined 30 per cent of his match fee after an angry exchange with umpire Ranmore Martinesz on day four of the second Test.Warner, once the self-confessed “attack dog” of Australia’s sledging effort, said Australia would continue to play the game their way.”We have a passionate brand,” Warner added. “If you look back at the history of Australian cricket we have an aggressive style.advertisement”We’ve got keep playing our brand of cricket and not stepping over that line.”last_img read more

After 1,192 days, Brazil mega-event run ends at Paralympics

first_imgAfter 1,192 days, Brazil’s run of hosting mega-sports events came to an end Sunday at the Paralympic Games. (Latest Sports stories)It began with soccer’s Confederations Cup in 2013, extended to the 2014 World Cup, ran through IOC President Thomas Bach’s goodbye speech last month at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, and finished with the closing ceremony of the Paralympics before 45,000 spectators at Rio’s Maracana stadium.Awarded when Brazil was a rising economic power, the sports pageants focused unprecedented attention on the country – much of it unwanted.As the shows went on, Brazil plunged into a deep recession. A billion-dollar corruption scandal buffeted state-run oil company Petrobras, and President Dilma Rousseff was removed from office in an impeachment trial just days after the Olympics closed.”This all left a very mixed legacy,” Mauricio Santoro, an international relations expert at the State University of Rio de Janeiro, told The Associated Press. “We are going to need some years to evaluate what was the impact, the worth of these events for Brazil.”By a conservative estimate, Brazil spent about $30 billion organizing the events with a mix of public and private money that included the construction of four white-elephant soccer stadiums for the World Cup. All four are in cities without major teams. (Rio hosts Brazil’s first Dog Olympics)Rio fared better with the Olympics, getting a metro line extension, bus lines, and light-rail. But much of the investment was aimed at Rio’s upscale suburb of Barra da Tijuca – not at the city’s sprawling favelas, or slums. The Olympic Park and Athletes Village there will be molded into high-priced commercial and residential properties now that the games are done.advertisement”I think the Olympics and Paralympics were a boost to the self-esteem of Brazil,” Santoro said. “They happened when everything was going so bad in Brazil. The mere fact they happened without serious problems, without an infrastructure disaster, without a terrorist attack, made Brazil feel better about itself.”MISSED OPPORTUNITYBrazil’s reputation away from home is another matter. Only a handful of foreign leaders attended the Olympics – compared to about 100 four years ago in London.The state of Rio de Janeiro is broke and defaulting on bond payments. Some schools have suspended classes, and hospitals are understaffed. Only a last-minute bailout of about 250 million reals ($76.5 million) from the federal and local governments saved the Paralympics from a shortfall in the organizing committee’s privately funded operating budget.”There was a feeling that Brazil is such a big mess,” Santoro said. “How could you have a good opinion of this country?”Organizers bragged about legacy, but failed to deliver on a big promise made to secure the bid: the clean-up of Guanabara Bay, an open sewer that receives much of the city’s untreated raw waste.Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes acknowledged the clean-up was a “missed opportunity,” one the International Olympic Committee overlooked and often defended.EMPTY SEATSThe Olympics endured some rough going, plagued by empty seats, organizational glitches and scandals – one involving American swimmer Ryan Lochte and another in which high-ranking IOC member Patrick Hickey was arrested for scalping tickets. Hickey is still in Brazil awaiting trial and denies any wrongdoing.Bach also skipped the opening of the Paralympics to attend a mourning ceremony for former West Germany president and foreign minister Walter Scheel. His office said he missed Sunday’s closing ceremony to be in New York to take part in the United Nations Refugee Summit.Police investigators in Brazil want to question Bach about email exchanges he had with Hickey related to Ireland’s ticket allocation. He’s not accused of wrongdoing, but he could be held if he arrives in Brazil.Against most predictions, the Paralympics were a smoother ride with grassroots support. Arenas were packed with many tickets selling at just $3 apiece, in contrast to the Olympics, where many tickets were sold as part of high-end hospitality packages and often went unused.COMPELLING STORIESThe Paralympics also topped the Olympics in compelling stories, and in some performances.No story was more moving than that of 37-year-old Belgian Marieke Vervoort, who won a silver medal in wheelchair racing. She has a degenerative spine disease and talked of plans to end her life by euthanasia when she can no longer endure the pain.”For me, I think death is something like they operate on you, you go to sleep and you never wake up,” Vervoort said. “For me, it’s something peaceful.”The top four finishers in the men’s 1,500 – in the T13 class for visually impaired runners – all had better times than the Olympic champion in Rio, American Matthew Centrowitz. Abdellatif Baka of Algeria won in 3 minutes, 48.29 seconds. Centrowitz ran 3:50.00 in an admittedly slow, tactical race.advertisementGerman amputee long-jumper Marcus Rehm, who jumps with a carbon fiber blade and won gold in Rio, also holds the long jump world record of 8.40 meters. This is better than the winning jump in the Rio Olympics at 8.38 meters.TRAGEDYThere was tragedy, too, when Iranian Bahman Golbarnezhad, 48, died Saturday after crashing in a road-cycling race.CHINA TOP MEDAL TALLYChina topped the medal table at the Paralympics, which is increasingly driven by nationalism – much like the Olympics. Britain, Ukraine and the United States were next on the table.”The Paralympics are a high-performance sporting event between countries,” IPC spokesman Craig Spence said. “The goal is to win the most gold medals here. That’s what every sport is about. It’s about winning.”last_img read more