The Jamaica versus United States rivalry on the track will continue tomorrow in the women’s 400 metres at the Jamaica International Invitational (JII) meet. Both countries will parade four athletes each for the event. Six of these athletes competed at some stage in the Rio Olympic Games 4x400m . Those down to compete for Jamaica are Novlene Williams Mills, Stephenie Ann McPherson, Christine Day and Anneisha McLaughlin Whilby. The United States team will be led by Natasha Hastings and include Courtney Okolo, Phyllis Francis and Ashley Spencer. This race is expected to be one of the most competitive events on tomorrow’s programme as there is no clear favourite. Three of the American athletes in the line up went under 50 seconds last year. Okolo did 49.71, Hastings 49.90 and Francis 49.94. However, this is a new year and this will count for nothing as with the season so early no one has dominated the event so far and Hastings with a season’s best of 50.74 at the Shanghai Diamond League a week ago, when finishing second is the top ranked athlete going into the race. No other athlete has gone under 51 this year. The Jamaican to watch is Williams Mills. She has a season’s best of 51.45 when finishing fourth in Shanghai and normally runs her best races on local soil and a good performance is expected once again from her. McPherson, the 2016 Diamond League winner, was off to a slow start in Shanghai where she finished seventh and will want to make up for that performance while both McLaughlin Whilby and Day will be hoping also for big improvements on their season openers.While the front running American Hastings could go all the way her teammates Okolo, Francis and Spencer who finished third in the women’s 400m hurdles in Rio last year will be hoping to crash the Jamaican party. Okolo could make a big mark here. This is her first individual 400m of the season but she looked the best of the Americans when they won the 4x400m event several weeks ago at the IAAF World Relays in the Bahamas. New year
PHIL UNDERWOOD from Alabama, United States, is exactly the kind of visitor that Sandals hopes to score a hole-in-one with as the resort yesterday teed off its 15th annual USA Travel Agent Golf Tournament at Sandals Golf and Country Club in Upton, St Ann. “I am here just for vacation, but I play golf everywhere I go,” said Underwood, who was raring to tackle the greens as soon as travel agents brought in from all across the United States by Sandals finished the first of two days on the picturesque 18-hole course with Team 11 on 61, holding a four-stroke lead ahead of three teams locked on 65 – Teams 15, 6 and 12. “If anybody is coming here, I would tell them to play golf,” said Underwood, unwittingly sounding like he was one of the 54 travel agents Sandals is hosting at the weekend as part of its continued push to market Jamaica as a golfing destination to the world. The Alabama native had to pause when asked how many courses he had played worldwide before naming, “Iberostar in the Dominican Republic, Canc?n (Mexico), Italy, Spain,” adding that it was his first visit to Jamaica, but it was his second day on the course after making his debut on Tuesday. “I played on Tuesday. The course is good, I like the layout. The greens roll good, but they are slow,” he said, before pointing to Oshae Hay, a product of Sandals’ Golf Academy, and adding,”great caddies”, a testament to the programme which targets youths in the Upton area, the likes of Romaine Evans, the 2015 Caribbean junior champion. Mike Norton, vice-president, group sales, Sandals, said having travel agents compete at the annual tournament gives them a first-hand experience of the course, which has been ranked among the top three in Jamaica by USA Today. “We are expanding our golf to get groups here, especially,” he pointed out. “We firmly believe more golfers are coming to Jamaica, and we are certainly getting more interest. “We now have recently appointed Jake Coldiron, who is from a golfing background and whose role is to increase the golf market by targeting golf tour operators, travel agents that focus on golf as well as to get country clubs on board,” Norton added, pointing out that clubs stand to benefit from a ‘sixth-room-free’ promotion during off-peak times.
Renuka Tewari is a self-taught craftswoman, who hails from the county of Demerara. As a teenager who loves crafts and designing, she has managed to create a business in less than a year, which brings to life the needs of her customers. CraftsCreations&Smiles, her online-based business, speaks volumes in bringing out the strange crafty demands of customers. What makes this enterprise a unique one is the fact that the items cannot be found in stores or on the Internet, since it customises items to fit the various occasions.Some of the popular items in recent months include dream catchers and elaborate floral crowns. However, mugs with catchy slogans, twisted copper necklaces, and eccentric bridal bouquets are also on the list.“CraftsCreations&Smiles is an online craft store and my aim is to provide the customised creations. We also have items that are already made. We do items such as bouquets, floral arrangements, floral crowns, mugs, corsages, and basically anything crafty.”Tewari recalled that it all started when a friend desperately needed a floral crown for his girlfriend and she decided to help him. It was that first creation of hers that sparked a latent aspiration to make craft-making an enterprise, rather than just a hobby.“After creating that piece, I posted it on social media and it received tons of likes. That’s when I decided that I can create even more amazing stuff and make a business out of it,” Tewari explained.“The main aim behind the business is to have persons being able to have their designs come to life, so we work with various specifications,” she related.She reminisced on the days when artsy ‘stuff’ was just part of her school projects, which would reflect her imagination and personality. Building on those memories, she continues to create for her business even more astonishing pieces that capture the attention of strangers everywhere.On numerous platforms, the 19-year-old has had the chance to showcase her products. Her creations have been showcased at Curl Fete and the recently-held Regional Agricultural and Commercial Exhibition at the Leonora Track and Field Centre.In both cases, customers are thrilled at the quality of work being handcrafted by Tewari and many of her items are sold immediately.She explained that making other people happy is one of the things that drive the business forward, since she is always working to please the customers and meet their needs. This epitomises her favourite quote, “Keep smiling and brighten someone’s day” which she turns to for inspiration.Bending copper into dazzling pieces is not just her way of making crafts, but it relieves stress and enables the mind to think beyond the norm.
…on teachers’ “vocation” hypocrisyAt the Minister of Education’s award ceremony for Region Four teachers, one teacher read her poem detailing in verse the woes of her profession in light of their meagre wage – especially after the insult they received in lieu of increases after their one week strike. Immediately, up bounced Ivelaw Griffith, Vice Chancellor of UG onto the stage, to gratuitously “advise” the teachers that they should “do it for the passion, not the pay”!!Can you believe this man? Here he is, earning millions monthly – not to mention his perks – after he was let go at his last posting at Fort Valley State University in Georgia and he’s talking about “teaching for passion and not pay”?? Was it the “passion for teaching” that drove him to appoint a 12-person “Cabinet” with three Deputy Vice Chancellors” to assist him?? You don’t believe he called his top assistants a “Cabinet”? Just google the UG website!!Was it for “passion” that his first act after he was appointed was to raise UG students fees by five per cent, even though he attended for free back in the day?? Which he had to rescind because of the outcry! Was it for “passion” he flew a huge entourage – mainly his “Cabinet” – up to New York supposedly to “raise funds” but ended up spending $4 million and brought back $2 million!! Unlike Jack of yore, he PUT IN a plum and PULLED OUT a thumb!!Was it for “passion” he insisted on the first “Investiture Ceremony” for himself in the 50+ year history of Guyana? This involved a procession with faculty attired in academic regalia to confer the “official powers and responsibilities of the office to Professor Griffith”!! This, not so incidentally, cost $10 million?? Even greats like Drayton who preceded him didn’t try to puff up themselves at the expense of the institution.He tied in the “Investiture Ceremony” with an elaborate “”Diaspora Conference” at the Ramada Princess Hotel. Was it because of his “passion for education” there were no students in attendance nor any papers presented by them? Was it because of his “passion for teaching” that had him launch a very expensive glossy “Renaissance” Magazine which seems to have as its sole goal to “big up” his reputation?It’s hypocritical for Griffith to be telling teachers who still can’t get a living wage to not worry about money when he’s spending the stuff – from our tax dollars – like it was going out of style. And UG is over $500 million in debt!!There needs to be a CoI into the operations of the VC. Maybe Justice Kennard who has experience with wild spending at City Hall?…on wild claims in ParliamentIn the wake of President Trump’s proclivity for making all sorts of wild and outrageous assertions, the term “fact checking” has moved out of the publication business and into general usage. In Guyana, the Public Infrastructure Minister seems to have caught the bug during his presentation on the budget!He reels off a host of projects initiated by the PPP complaining there were “no feasibility studies”. He, of course, has been stung by the SOCU investigation into why he sole-sourced a $153 MILLION feasibility study for the Demerara Harbour Bridge – which had to be thrown out!! PPP’s Irfaan Ali nailed him immediately on one wild claim about the East Coast-East Bank bypass road!But there was his claim for the Skeldon Factory. If he’d looked at Tate and Lyle’s website, he’d see “Booker Tate carried out a viability and expansion study which recommended… a new cane sugar factory at the Skeldon Sugar Estate”. The he spoke about Amaila Falls.Did he check the one for Burnham in 1976 by Motor-Columbus Consulting Engineers? Sheesh!!…on sugar lieLast Sunday, Nagamootoo gloated, “…the balance in severance payment…owed to the sugar workers who lost their jobs as a result of the closure of some estates, was paid.”So why were the Wales workers picketing on Wednesday for “severance”?
…and dishonourable PMThe House of Commons, after which our National Assembly is modelled, runs on a host of traditions and conventions. Much of these have to do with regulating the behaviour of the members – who, after all, represent the “commoners” or lower classes, as opposed to the aristocracy. It is the custom, for instance, in Parliamentary democracies, for the members of the House to refer to each other as “the Honourable Member”.This, it was hoped, would encourage MPs not to descend into gutter language or fistfights, with which the common folks were wont to settle their disagreements. After listening to the Budget Debate, it became clear to your Eyewitness that a host of MPs insist on acting like the great unwashed masses – especially those from the Government benches.Take the case of Keith Scott, the Minister in the Ministry of Social Protection, which is in the Ministry of the Presidency; he technically isn’t a “Minister” since he heads the “Labour Portfolio”, which is actually a department. The fella insisted on READING a typewritten speech, which is just not done in Parliaments!! As a presumably educated gentleman, he’s supposed to be speaking spontaneously and (hopefully) eloquently on the topic; and not read a speech obviously written for him, since he couldn’t even pronounce some of the words!!MPs also aren’t allowed to read newspapers etc during Parliamentary Sessions, but there were some blatant examples of this disrespectful practice throughout the Budget Debate. Two Opposition MPs from the back benches were caught reading some Muckraker gossip from a laptop. This, of course, ipso facto, proved they were card-carrying members of the hoi polloi!!But most egregious of all were the antics of the Prime Minister, who insisted that the traditions of the Guyanese Parliament during Budget Debates be broken just to offer him a sop in lieu of being shafted from the powers of the Prime Ministership!! The tradition was that the Leader of the Opposition would be the penultimate speaker, with the Finance Minister, who introduced the Budget, finishing up his defence to the preceding critique.From the first Budget the PNC-led coalition presented in 2015, however, Nagamootoo, stung by the taunts from the Opposition benches about his emasculation, insisted he be the penultimate speaker – following the Opposition Leader!! The Opposition then protested by walking out just before Nagamootoo began to nurse his ego!! This followed for the next three years.This year, unlike the principled Opposition walkout for a cause, the Government MPs, led by Nagamootoo, simply walked out on the Opposition Leader’s speech simply because they wanted to “diss” the Opposition.This represents such common/guttersnipe behaviour that it betrays its actual source in the proverbial fisherwoman’s trade!!…and PM’s PortfolioThe DPI – which is headed by Nagamootoo’s shill and general factotum – took time out to report on one Government Minister’s complaint that Opposition MP Nandlall claimed Nagamootoo is bereft of a portfolio. As you, dear reader, know, your Eyewitness has been making this point ever since PNC leader Granger not only tore up the Cummingsburg Accord — which promised Nagamootoo chairing of Cabinet meetings right after the 2015 elections — but refused to allocate any Ministerial portfolio to him!! All he was given was a column in the Chronic!!Your Eyewitness was hoping the Government Minister would’ve gone on to spell out Nagamootoo’s portfolio, since he insisted the man from Whim had one!! But obviously it was a whimsical statement, since no elaboration was forthcoming!! But bereft of anything substantive (or substantial!) to do, and insisting that he speak in Parliament, Nagamootoo proceeded to put his foot into his (open) mouth.He referenced the Booker Tate study (mentioned by your Eyewitness) that recommended the Skeldon Modernisation – including the factory.Thereby nailing David Patterson’s lie in Parliament!!…and liesAnother Parliamentary custom is you can’t tell another “Honourable Member” he just told a lie – like Patterson did with the Skeldon Factory.Winston Churchill got around the restraint by describing it as a “terminological inexactitude”!!
Dear Editor,Brian Tiwarie has reacted, strongly, to a letter I had sent to the press, in which I stated that the APNU/AFC regime handed over eight containers of steel that were imported by Surrendra Company for the Construction of the Specialty Hospital, to BK International Group, days after the 2015 General Elections. I indicated that the PPP/C Government had paid all required charges to GRA and to the Wharf, took the containers off the Wharf and the Ministry of Health took possession of these containers.In the meantime, the PPP/C Government had moved to the Courts to sue Surrendra to recover monies paid to them after the Government terminated the contract. The intention was to execute the judgment obtained against Surrendra by levying on the containers to recover the judgment.Mr Tiwarie claimed that we did not know what were in the containers, or their value. That also is not true. At the request of the Office of the President, the GRA did a 100 per cent inspection of the containers. As a result, we were assured that the value was sufficient to satisfy the judgment.These containers were removed at the instance of Mr Tiwarie. Therefore, I maintain that millions of dollars’ worth in steel were virtually handed to him by his new-found political friends.After I released the letter Mr Tiwari sent to me dated March 23 2015, in which he assured me that he was a “born PPP” and still is, obliviously embarrassed, Mr Tiwari seemed to have gone on a frenzy, throwing caution to the wind and unleashed a wild set of charges against me.He claimed that he sent that letter to me because I threatened to stop his company from using GuySuCc’s hangar. This is absolutely untrue.GuySuCo granted his company permission to use that facility, not me nor the Government. It was not my policy or that of my Government to interfere with entities governed by a board of directors. He alluded to an incident where certain APNU officials travelled on a flight which the Government of Guyana had chartered. Of Course I objected. I had every right to do so. In any event, this incident is absolutely unconnected to his letter 23rd March 2015. This incident occurred long after.Mr Tiwari also claimed that the PPP/C had allowed Surrendra’s representative to leave Guyana. That is another lie. The truth is that after his case was completed with Surrendra, the court discharged the injunction which prevented the representative from leaving Guyana. There is a Court Order to this effect. As a result, the representative was free to leave the Country. This had nothing to do with the Government.The fact is that the PPP/C ended this contract with Surrendra after their breach and took legal and administrative measures to recover tax payers’ money.Mr Tiwari’s actions prevented the Government from recovering these monies.In clear Mafiosi style, Mr Tiwari made a lot of allegations against my brother. Let me state from the outset that I am not my brother’s keeper. However, I feel compelled to respond because, Mr Tiwari attempts to implicate me in a number of wrongdoings. As a result, I took the time to speak to my brother to ascertain these claims of Mr Tiwari.He informed me as follows:1. My brother never purchased any land from GuySuCo. No one owns any such land on his behalf.2. My brother offered to purchase lands from GuySuCo. He never received a response. I challenge Mr Tiwari to produce evidence to the contrary.3. My brother never purchased any pontoons or tugs from NICIL.4. My brother owns a tug, which he has owned long before I became President.5. As regards the barge, this barge was owned by MARAD. Mr Tiwari used this barge for years and when it became unworkable he abandoned it at Parika and left to sink.6. My brother was awarded a contract to fetch materials for the Government. He was permitted to repair and use this same barge. This he did for years. Eventually, MARAD offered to sell him the barge. They produced a certificate of valuation. My brother purchased at a price above that valuation.7. A few months ago, Mr Tiwari caused SARU to investigate this matter. I believe Mr Tiwari wants back this barge because it is now in good condition. SARU investigated this matter and examined my brother’s documents. My brother has heard nothing since.8. Mr Tiwari also charged that my brother received a container of parts from a Chinese businessman. Another lie. I was told that it is Mr Brain Tiwari who introduced my brother to the Chinese businessman. He told me that he had ordered from this businessman a part for the steering of his tug. The gentleman obliged and brought it in. It was housed in a box not more than five feet long and three feet wide. That is a far cry from a forty feet container. He also informed me that in Mr Tiwari’s presence, he enquired from the gentleman, the cost, however, this gentleman refuse to accept any payment.Mr Tiwari conveys the impression that I have some personal vendetta against him and his company. This is another fabrication. I have known Mr Tiwari for many years before I became president. Why then would I suddenly develop a vendetta for him?The truth is that when I assumed office, it was reported to me that Mr Tiwari’s company has a long history of not meeting contractual deadlines and submitting huge variations to contracts already signed, sometimes more than the original contract value. I was unprepared to tolerate such abuse. Also, there was a long line of contractual breaches by Mr Tiwari’s company which he was failing to deliver on. These include:1. His company was contracted to rent the GRDB Wharf, and to develop it with an option to purchase in the end for 0 million. The rent was million per year. No rent was paid for four years. No development works were done. As a result, legal proceedings were file by NICIL. The matter is still pending in the Court.2. His company also miserably failed in respect to a contract to build a wharf for GPL at Vreed-en-Hoop. GPL faced tremendous cost overruns and delays as a result. GPL was forced to move fuel by road instead. This cost the company millions of dollars in additional expenses.3. Bk International fabricated a claim that GPL destroyed 0 million of heavy-duty equipment which he claimed were on a piece of land at Vreed-en-Hoop, which he owned. In response GPL contended that the land was abandoned, over grown with bushes and had some pieces of old iron on it, which they dumped in the bushes nearby. In fact GPL claimed they spent million to clear the land and pieces of old iron are still in the bushes. BK International demanded 0 million in compensation and when this demand was refused they sued. The matter is still in Court.4. BK’s management of the Haags Bosch project was a complete disaster. They ousted Puran’s Bros from the project and took over management of the site. It was so bad that the IDB refused to fund the project if BKs continued to be the contractor. Our Government terminated the contract. BK went to court. Even this Government could not help him. They eventually ejected him from the site.5. The East Bank Road Project is another casualty. I do not believe the contract is completed as yet.6. Three contracts to drill wells for GWI were awarded to him years ago. To date none has been completed.I can go on but I think I have said enough.I hope that I have made it clear that I have no personal axe to grind with Mr Tiwari. Mr Tiwari has a problem with me. It all started when I begun to demand that contractors fulfil their contractual obligation.Sincerely,Donald RamotarFormer President
Dear Editor,The shadow of the former PNC regime looms over Guyana’s Judiciary, as it does over the entire country.Only those who lived through the PNC era of terror could visualize the ramifications of the implied and very real threat to members of Guyana’s Judiciary by erstwhile Attorney-General, Basil Williams. The professionalism of the Chief Justice (Ag) was underestimated by AG Basil Williams when he uttered the implied threat, “We put she deh, she gat to rule fu we”, intimating that because the PNC-led government was instrumental in her appointment, she would in turn abdicate her professional responsibilities to her mandate in favour to loyalty to the Government that appointed her. Her impartial decisions in court anent Red House and other issues have allayed the concerns of all those who were fearful that she would have been influenced by the considerations as adumbrated by the Attorney-General.Judges should be considered above the fray, and not subjected to the accusations, hostile voice tonalities and/or threats by anyone while adjudicating on matters being tried before them in a court of law; as was displayed by Justice Holder as he presided over a matter filed against the State by the Chairman of the Public Service Commission, a member of the Judicial Service Commission and a member of the Police Service Commission – unconscionable acts that so unsettled Justice Holder that he walked immediately off the bench without adjourning the proceedings.Given the fact that Mr. Basil Williams, in his position as Attorney-General, is the guardian of the law in Guyana and should act with absolute circumspection within this mandate, he should be called upon to account for his utterances and unwarranted attack on Justice Holder.His outburst to Justice Holder, which is being justifiably construed as a threat on the Judge’s life, should immediately be addressed by the President, if the current Government is to hang on to any shred of credibility.In any other democracy, an Attorney-General who issues a death threat to a sitting Judge would be removed from his office forthwith. We are watching closely and carefully, since other parties were present in the courtroom and witnessed this infamous altercation on that fateful day.The nation awaits the outcome of this travesty being played out in the justice system in Guyana.Regards,Bishop Juan EdghillMP
Dear Editor,GuySuCo says that GAWU correspondences are dealt with professionally. Maybe it is that GuySuCo has redefined the word. We say this taking into account that our correspondence of September 21 to the company’s CEO regarding the payment of wages on September 22 was not even acknowledged.We further wish to remind the company’s spokesperson that the Union’s claim towards improving workers’ pay and conditions and benefits remains unaddressed at this point in time, in stark violation of the timelines set out in the Recognition and the Avoidance and Settlement of Disputes Agreement. We say this because letters concerning workers’ matters, some weeks old, remain unanswered. We wonder where is the professionalism that the GuySuCo spokesperson speaks about. Quite clearly, it seems that the word professionalism has taken on a new meaning in GuySuCo’s context.We are then accused of encouraging workers to engage in work stoppages. Again, it seems that the Corporation has fallen off its rocker. Many of those stoppages that GuySuCo speaks of occur in the early morning hours, very much before our Union’s offices begin to operate. One wonders how we can encourage a stoppage when we are not even aware of the situation. Moreover, why would a worker — waking up in the wee hours of the morning, and having his wife waking up even earlier than him to prepare his meals — go to work just to resort to strike? But that is exactly what the Corporation is seeking to say. It seems rationality has completely departed the Corporation’s mindset.The fact that the workers are forced to engage in work stoppages obviously speaks to the pressures they face when they must confront weedy, vine-infested and grassy fields, which require much greater efforts on their part to clear, and an arrogant attitude as they seek to obtain reasonable payments for the additional work they are required to undertake.GAWU is then charged with impacting “production and productivity and the security of employment”. But is it the GAWU that is proposing to close and sell-out estates? Is it the GAWU that is not applying inputs in a timely manner, or not applying inputs altogether in some cases? Is it the GAWU that is making decisions to cease cane planting? Is it the GAWU that is making decisions on how finances should be allocated and spent? These decisions, policies and directions are not influenced, considered or approved by the GAWU — or the workers, for that matter. We are not even told about them until they are implemented. How then can we be accused?But, then again, as we have being saying, the Corporation has no concern or respect for its hard-working workers and their organisations.The Corporation continues to speak glowingly about having partnership, but that’s all it does. It looks as if this talk of partnership is one based on its dictated terms and conditions. Such an approach cannot lend to success. GAWU, as it has said many times before now, is committed to good and positive relations with the sugar company. Such partnership must be founded on the bedrock of equality, mutual respect and understanding.Yours truly,Seepaul NarineGeneral SecretaryGAWU
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 Dawkins, a former Naismith player of the year and assistant coach at Duke, will match up with Krzyzewski on Sunday as No. 9 seed UCF attempts to upset No. 1 seed Duke in an East Region matchup at Columbia, South Carolina.It’s the type of scenario Dawkins would rather avoid, even though he’s been through this situation before. Dawkins faced Krzyzewski before during his tenure as Stanford’s head coach.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubs Virginia Tech and Liberty are located less than 100 miles from each other but have traveled all the way across the country to San Jose, California, to face off with an East Region semifinal berth at stake. The 13th-seeded Flames earned this date with No. 4 seed Virginia Tech by upsetting Mississippi State 80-76 for their first NCAA Tournament victory.These two teams should know each other pretty well. Virginia Tech beat Liberty 86-70 in a preseason exhibition that raised over $36,000 for hurricane victims.They haven’t met with anything on the line since Virginia Tech beat Liberty 73-63 on Nov. 19, 2014.WATCH OUT FOR 3sTennessee has allowed 15 3-point baskets in each of its last two games, which represents a major concern heading into its matchup with Iowa. The Hawkeyes shot 11 of 22 from 3-point range in a 79-72 first-round victory over Cincinnati.“It’s not that we’re not trying to defend the 3-point line,” Tennessee coach Rick Barnes said. “You’ve got to give (the opponents) credit. They’re making the shots. It’s not like they’re layups, either. They’re making shots from very deep range, and that’s part of the game. And that 3-point line is a great equalizer in some ways.”THE REST OF THE SCHEDULEIn a matchup of double-digit seeds, No. 13 seed UC Irvine puts its 17-game winning streak at stake and seeks its first Sweet 16 berth as it faces No. 12 seed Oregon in a South Region second-round game. … Buffalo’s high-flying offense matches up with Texas Tech’s stingy defense. Buffalo is scoring 85.1 points per game while Texas Tech allows only 59.2 points per game. … Houston faces Ohio State and attempts to reach the Sweet 16 for the first time since losing to Georgetown in the 1984 championship game. Houston lost a second-round game last year 64-63 to eventual runner-up Michigan on a Jordan Poole 3-pointer at the buzzer. Perpetual Help-Jonelta rules NBTC 3×3 P260,000 each in aid to displaced Marawi folk released by US LATEST STORIES Sarah Geronimo’s ‘Tala’ enters Billboard’s world digital song sales chart Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college SEEKING FASTER STARTSNorth Carolina and Virginia both trailed at halftime Friday before rallying to beat No. 16 seeds in the first round.Virginia was behind 36-30 at halftime of its 71-56 victory over Gardner-Webb. North Carolina erased a 38-33 halftime deficit in an 88-73 triumph over Iona.Both realize they need to get off to faster starts Sunday.“We can’t have that letdown tomorrow,” North Carolina forward Luke Maye said Saturday. “We’ve just got to do our best to make sure we come out the right way and got to punch them in the mouth early.”Virginia should feel a little more confident now that it’s advanced beyond the first round. Virginia became the first No. 1 seed ever to lose to a No. 16 seed last year when it fell to Maryland-Baltimore County.“I think how we won (Friday) is a huge testament of our growth from last year,” Virginia guard Kyle Guy said. “Last year, we were in the same situation, and we panicked as an entire program, and this year we didn’t, and we took care of business and got the job done.“Yeah, we can breathe a little bit easier now, but at the same time, it’s the NCAA Tournament, so like you said, we’re not relaxed. We’re not content by any means. We still have our foot on the gas and just trying to go as far as we can,” he said.Duke also started slowly and led just 31-27 at halftime before rolling to an 85-62 victory over North Dakota State.FAMILIAR FOES Tim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’ Comelec assures no disruption in operations with retirement of execs Dawkins was the starting point guard for the Duke team that lost to Louisville in the 1986 national championship game. That team also included Harvard coach Tommy Amaker, former NBA player Mark Alarie, ESPN commentator Jay Bilas, New Orleans Pelicans interim general manager Danny Ferry, former NBA general manager Billy King and Utah Jazz coach Quin Snyder, among others.“What a collection of great guys who really understood the game,” Krzyzewski said.Dawkins later worked as an assistant on Krzyzewski’s staff from 1998-2008. He’s in his third season at UCF and led the Knights to their first NCAA Tournament victory Friday when they defeated VCU 73-58.“I think my team will come out with a sense of maturity,” Dawkins said. “I think they’ll come out with a focus. And that’s where they’ve been all year. They’ve come out, and they’ve competed against everyone we’ve played against, and that’s, I think, largely because of the leadership. Our senior leaders, guys that have been around. They’ve demanded that from all of our players.”Here are some other plotlines heading into Sunday’s games:ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘Duterte legacy:’ Gov’t boasts achievements so far “No one looks forward to that type of situation,” Dawkins said. “It’s something that happens because we’re in the tournament and it means we’ve done well because we’re all moving forward, but it’s not something you look forward to.”Duke is one of three No. 1 seeds from the Atlantic Coast Conference playing a second-round game Sunday. North Carolina faces No. 9 seed Washington in a Midwest Region game at Columbus, Ohio, and Virginia meets No. 9 seed Oklahoma in a South Region matchup at Columbia. Sarah Geronimo’s ‘Tala’ enters Billboard’s world digital song sales chart Central Florida coach Johnny Dawkins points during the team’s first-round game against VCU in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament Friday, March 22, 2019, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo/Richard Shiro)The point guard for Mike Krzyzewski’s first Final Four team now is trying to lead Central Florida to its first Sweet 16 berth.Standing in Johnny Dawkins’ way is his former coach and boss.ADVERTISEMENT Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? MOST READ Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. View comments Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next
NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption PLAY LIST 02:56NCRPO 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 award03:05Malakanyang bilib sa Phivolcs | Chona Yu Grand Slam remains on Beermen bucket list Pagadian on tighter security for 100,000 expected at Sto. Niño feast Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LATEST STORIES The Witcher series prompts over 500,000 reprints of Andrzej Sapkowski’s books MOST READ Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Solon urges Solgen to reconsider quo warranto petition vs ABS-CBN Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Paris Saint Germain’s Kylian Mbappe arrives at the UNFP (Union of French Professional Footballers) ceremony, in Paris, France, Sunday, May 19, 2019. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)PARIS — Kylian Mbappe has opened the door for a move away from Paris Saint-Germain.Just after receiving the award for the French league’s player of the season, the 20-year-old World Cup winner said he wants more responsibility, either at PSG or “elsewhere with a new project.”ADVERTISEMENT Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption View comments Mbappe, who joined from Monaco in 2017 for 180 million euros, had never speculated before on a possible transfer away from the French champions.“I feel it may be the right time to take more responsibilities,” Mbappe said after succeeding Neymar as the league’s best player. “Hopefully it will be at Paris Saint-Germain, it would be with a great pleasure. Or maybe elsewhere, with a new project.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsAfter winning the World Cup in Russia, Mbappe followed up with 32 league goals this season, becoming the first French player to reach at least that tally since 1966.Mbappe has been linked with a possible move to Real Madrid, where Zinedine Zidane returned as coach earlier this season. Eduard Folayang gets new opponent for ONE Manila card LeBron James stretches lead in NBA All-Star Game fan voting PSG sealed a sixth French league title in seven years but failed to defend its French Cup and French League Cup crowns this season. PSG was eliminated in the Champions League last 16 for the third straight year.Mbappe was also named the young player of the season for the third straight year.After leading Lille to a second-place finish, Christophe Galtier won the coach of the year award.ADVERTISEMENT Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines?