Stars align for Crusaders in 10th Super Rugby crown bid

first_img0Shares0000Back at full strength for quarter-finals: Canterbury Crusaders, seen here celebrating their Super Rugby final win against Golden Lions a year ago © AFP / Marty MELVILLECHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand, Jun 16 – The Canterbury Crusaders have delivered an ominous warning as they bid for a third consecutive Super Rugby crown with news that they expect to be at full strength for the play-offs.The nine-times champions already have an impressive record having never lost a home playoff game since Super Rugby’s launch in 1996, and are unbeaten in their last 27 home fixtures. They confirmed their place at the top of the table this year with one round to spare and then had to wait until the end of the final game of the regular season at the weekend to learn they will be playing the Otago Highlanders in the first quarter-final next Friday.The second-seeded Jaguares play the Waikato Chiefs in Buenos Aires, the ACT Brumbies host the Coastal Sharks in Canberra while the Wellington Hurricanes are at home to the Northern Bulls.The Crusaders achieved home-ground advantage for the play-offs despite having many of their All Blacks out of action for much of the season, but the cavalry is returning when required.Tighthead prop Owen Franks, who has been plagued by a shoulder injury and only played four games in the regular season, has been cleared to return as has hooker Codie Taylor who has been out for a month with a broken finger.Another All Blacks frontrower Tim Perry, who broke an arm in round one, rejoined the side for their last pool match while senior All Blacks Kieran Read and Sam Whitelock were rested for the first month to manage their workload in a World Cup year.“To win a championship, a lot has got to go right. Full squad, full team. To give every chance to go through in that finals series, you need to have the opportunity to pick your best squad,” Crusaders coach Scott Robertson said.– ‘Freshen up’ –While most sides were under pressure for the final round of the regular season, Robertson gave the Crusaders the week off to “really freshen up”- ‘Freshen up’ -.Adding to their impressive record, the Crusaders topped the try-scoring list in the regular season with 73 and had the least scored against them with 31.“If you’re going to win it, you have to beat the Crusaders in Christchurch,” Chiefs coach Colin Cooper said.Undaunted, Highlanders coach Aaron Mauger said: “We can go through and beat anybody.”When the Bulls beat the Golden Lions in the final match at the weekend, it kept last year’s beaten finalists out of the final eight and confirmed the Chiefs would finish seventh and the Highlanders eighth.It also meant the Chiefs, who made the quarter-finals through a hefty win over the Melbourne Rebels on Friday, travelled back to New Zealand on Saturday then flew to Argentina on Sunday to face South African conference winners Jaguares.If the Chiefs win, they then have to fly to Australia or South Africa for a semi-final against the winner of the Brumbies-Sharks match.A Jaguares win will see the Argentines host the winner of the Canberra clash in the semi-finals.The winner of the Crusaders-Highlanders match will play the winner of the Hurricanes-Bulls encounter.If the Crusaders win they stay home but if the Highlanders prevail then, as the bottom qualifier, they must travel for their semi-final.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Sunderland star Giaccherini holding out for ‘dream’ Chelsea

first_img Sunderland and Italy midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini 1 Sunderland midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini has NOT agreed a £2million deal to join Italian side Torino, as he is still holding out for a ‘dream’ move to Chelsea.The Italy international shone at Euro 2016 as he helped Antonio Conte’s side reach the quarter-finals in France.Giaccherini has since been linked with a move to Torino, in a deal which would see Sunderland net around £2m, however, Conte has also considered bringing the 31-year-old to Stamford Bridge with him this summer.And now Giaccherini’s agent, Furio Valcareggi, has confessed his client still hopes to secure a dream move to Chelsea.“Unfortunately we don’t [have an agreement with Torino],” Valcareggi told Gazzetta Dello Sport.“There has been contact and interest. Torino have taken note of the costs and how the transfer would have to be done and now they are considering it.“But this also applies to Fiorentina and Bologna, who are gathering information before moving on.“If Chelsea were to call? Chelsea would be a dream.”last_img read more

Be Bold !!

first_imgI don’t know if you’ve attended HR conferences or SHRM chapter meetings. I have a feeling that many HR pros want to do this, but they may have not gone to them . . . yet. There may be great reasons that you haven’t taken this step yet, but I want to challenge this (and some other things.)When you attend conferences, you see HR pros attracted to sessions where they can receive encouragement and/or motivation. This is great and also telling. Everyone likes a shot in the arm to get energized. I think these sessions are so full because people are just flat worn out. I don’t want to support a “woe is me” stance for Human Resources practitioners. I don’t think it’s needed. There’s too much of the deconstruction of HR out there. I want to see that turned completely around, and never take that approach again . . . ever.This past week I read something that describes most of HR. It said, “The majority of people wish for safety. You should be bold instead !!”I completely agree with this sentiment. When I scan the HR landscape, the tone of the profession is to play to the middle and keep as much stasis as possible. Keep everything, and everyone, calm. We’ve done our best to remove the excitement, passion and fun in the workplace. Isn’t it ironic then that when we go to HR events, we seek the presentations that will fill us with the same items that we’ve tried to squelch?The only thing holding people back from being bold in who they are and what they do, is the voice of doubt that runs like an endless tape in our heads. The desire to take bold steps is inherent in all of us, but the fear that we sense becomes irrational and leads us to maintain the status quo.Aren’t you tired of this? Why would you keep practicing HR if it continues to be frustrating and mundane? Time to be bold !!The key thing to note in making a 180 degree move like this is to be connected to others who have gone before you. There may not be an overwhelming number of these folks but they exist. I’d encourage you to start being bold by getting out and finding HR events to attend. It will be difficult to make this sort of transformation just through your own efforts at your workplace. It will seem so out of the norm to those you work with that you could become quickly discouraged.When you gather with other HR pros, you can connect and network with those who can encourage you. You’ll find that those who are bold themselves are never alone. They surround themselves with others who also are willing to not except the ordinary as the norm. I’ve also seen that they welcome the chance to help others and make themselves available. They relish the chance to see more HR folks practice boldly !!So, when the voices of “I can’t spend time away . . . ” or “My company won’t support . . .” or “I can’t afford . . .” start playing in your head – you have to ignore them and look for ways to get to HR gatherings. If something is too far away, then find something local or virtual. If something is too costly or out of your budget, read HR blogs and get active in social media forums. If your company won’t support you, then don’t settle. You need to push back and show them that they will benefit from you receiving professional development and having more HR resources.I know this is risky and I know that it will be challenging. I also know that it’s a much better way to live and practice HR !! There is no need to keep playing it safe. Join me and be bold !!Originally posted on Everyday People blog.last_img read more

USS Partners with Mojix to Expand RFID System Offerings

first_imgUSS recently announced the expansion of its electronic article surveillance (EAS) system integration capabilities and offerings to include radio-frequency identification(RFID} technology; made possible through a new partnership with enterprise RFID hardware and software manufacturer and developer,Mojix, Inc.Founded in 2004, California-based Mojix specializes in solution providers and system integrators partnerships to provide customized enterprise RFID system solutions accompanied by trusted installation, integration and maintenance services.USS Chief Technology Officer Robert Simoneau voiced his excitement for the new partnership and technology capabilities, and the possibilities they present for USS’ product development teams.- Sponsor – “This an incredible opportunity for USS to drastically expand our technology and product catalogue,” said Simoneau. “RFID technology is the way of the future,” he continued. “In addition to increasing more-revealing detection and business intelligence, it allows users to make decisions backed by data, resulting in safer and more efficient environments.The MojixViZix™ IoT solution is particularly appealing as it represents a proven middleware platform that is absolutely ready for use by our retail partners.”“By leveraging a partnership with a like-minded, innovation-driven, organization like Mojix, the resulting synergy will meet clients’ unique needs not only now, but well into the future.” Stay UpdatedGet critical information for loss prevention professionals, security and retail management delivered right to your inbox.  Sign up nowlast_img read more

Business Transformation: Organizations Struggle to Find the Path to Innovation

first_imgBusinesses aren’t happy with themselves.  A report by KPMG found that 96 percent of businesses say that they need to change, transform and become more innovative.Stephen Hasty, Global Transformation Leader at KPMG International, said that “business transformation can no longer be a ‘one and done’ initiative.  Top executives realize that their organizations must create mechanisms to continuously evolve and respond to their external environment. Unfortunately, these business leaders are up against serious barriers to reaching goals, as well as massive disruptions in technology and customer preferences and demand.”The KPGM study has the following three recommendations for achieving transformation and innovation:Focus on the customerEmbed innovation in the businessLearn to thrive on changelast_img read more

Two new-ball rule is helping swing bowlers, says Vinay Kumar

first_imgAfter registering his career-best haul of four for 30 in the second One-day International (ODI) in Delhi on Monday, pacer R Vinay Kumar is high on confidence ahead of the third match here on Thursday.Vinay was in race for the man of the match award for his effort, but Virat Kohli won the accolade for his fluent century. The Karnataka bowler, however, played down the issue on Wednesday when asked if he rued missing the award.”Virat played really well. It was a brilliant knock. For me, as long as the team wins it’s more than enough,” said the 27-year-old.Vinay, who relies on away swing, was happy about the amendments made in the ODI playing conditions allowing the re-introduction of two balls, one from each end in an innings.”I am feeling good. I am happy with my performance. Initially, the white ball didn’t swing much. But using two new balls has been very helpful for bowlers,” he said. “Previously, the ball used to swing for a maximum of five-six overs but now it keeps on swinging for 10-12 overs. It (use of two balls) is a plus factor for bowlers.”Vinay will also take encouragement from the history of PCA Stadium where the conditions and the pitch help pace and swing bowlers. “History says that the Mohali wicket is good for fast bowlers. Hopefully, we will get good swing here,” he said.India are 2-0 ahead in the fivematch series and need one more win to seal the series. If that happens on Thursday evening, it will be a sweet revenge for Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s team.advertisementNaturally, the Indian camp is high on confidence. “The dressing room is a happy one. In England also I didn’t find anything abnormal. That’s the plus point of our team. The captain backs everyone,” he said.On the other hand, England fast bowler Steven Finn is still optimistic that his team can stage a comeback and win the series.”We’ve got nothing to lose now; we’re playing against the world champions in their own conditions, we have nothing to lose. In these next three games, we’re going to leave nothing in the dressing room – not that anything has been left in the dressing room so far – and we’re really looking forward to these next three games. We have full belief that we can win these three games,” he said.”India have probably had the better of the conditions on both occasions. But we can’t blame our under-performance on that. I don’t think there is too much difference, to be honest, it’s the same teams playing against each other,” he said, referring to the recent series in England where India lost the ODI series 0-3.”They’ve obviously had more exposure to these conditions in the past. But that’s something we learn in every training session that we train in, every game that we play and we’re only going to get better throughout this series.”last_img read more

Sahara chief Subrato Roy ready to pay additional Rs 300 crore for

first_imgSahara chief Subrato Roy told the Supreme Court on Friday that he is ready to pay an additional Rs. 300 crore to get an extension of his parole until Sept. 16. However, Roy has also said that the amount should be adjusted as bank guarantee.Roy, who was sent to Tihar Jail in May 2014, was granted parole on humanitarian grounds on May 6 to attend his mother’s last rites. On Aug. 3, the parole was extended for the second time until mid September on the condition that the Sahara chief would deposit the above mentioned amount to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), DNAreported.”Ready to pay additional Rs. 300 crore, which should be adjusted with bank guarantee,” Roy was quoted as saying by Press Trust of India.On May 11, the apex court granted a two month extension to Roy and asked him to remit Rs. 200 crore with the regulator.The Sahara chief was jailed in May 2014 for continuously failing to comply with a 2012 court order asking him to repay Rs. 17,500 crore that his companies had raised from small investors. The court had also put across a conditional bail term then asking Roy to pay Rs. 10,000 crore, which was half in cash and half in bank guarantee.While the cash component nears repayment, getting bank guarantee has remained elusive for Sahara.last_img read more