Westbrook, Durant provide All-Star highlight

first_imgWestern Conference guard Russell Westbrook, of the Oklahoma City Thunder, dunks during the first half of the NBA All-Star Game in New Orleans, Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017. (AP Photo/Max Becherer)NEW ORLEANS — Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant played together for only 81 seconds in the All-Star Game, just one very early stint.It was enough for a signature highlight.ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next 15 Taal towns now under total lockdown Prince Harry: ‘No other option’ but to cut royal ties Golden State is 3-0 against Oklahoma City this season, so it’s not like Durant and Westbrook haven’t been around each other. But Sunday night marked the first time they shared an in-game huddle since last spring, when the Thunder season — and the Durant era — ended with a loss to Golden State in the West finals.“It was a great basketball play,” Durant said. “He was open so I threw him the lob. He can jump really high so yeah, good play.”At the time, no one knew it would be overshadowed later by Anthony Davis setting an All-Star record with 52 points — and then again when word came postgame that Sacramento is sending All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins to the Pelicans.Cousins played only two minutes, which made the trade potential quite obvious. But Western Conference coach Steve Kerr insisted that was planned because Cousins wasn’t physically feeling his best.“He said, ‘I’m pretty banged up, and I really don’t want to play much,’” Kerr said, detailing a conversation he said he had with Cousins on Saturday. “Just give me a few minutes, and that’s plenty.”ADVERTISEMENT Palace: Crisis over ABS-CBN franchise unlikely View comments Municipal councilor nabbed for indiscriminate firing in Leyte Cousins joins Davis in New Orleans after multi-player deal 98% of residents in Taal Volcano’s 14-kilometer danger zone evacuated – DILG A give-and-go — Westbrook to Durant, back to Westbrook for a dunk, rekindling their Oklahoma City magic for a moment — was the one of the most ballyhooed moments of Sunday night’s showcase in New Orleans. The Western Conference bench broke into celebration, replete with Stephen Curry even tossing a cup of ice water into a timeout huddle, though Westbrook tried to downplay it all afterward.“Yeah, he threw a lob,” Westbrook said. “That’s all that happened. Just threw a lob. It’s basketball. That’s it.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnThat wasn’t it, of course.The Durant-Westbrook story line was huge coming into the All-Star Game, which the West won 192-182. The tale is well known: Durant left Oklahoma City for Golden State last summer, and the relationship between the former Thunder teammates has either been frosty or nonexistent since, depending on which perspective one wants to believe. Motorcycle taxis ‘illegal’ starting next week — LTFRB board member MOST READ Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio 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 respite Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Poe chides LTFRB exec over termination of motorcycle taxi pilot study Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town LATEST STORIES Motorcycle taxis ‘illegal’ starting next week — LTFRB board memberlast_img read more

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South Africa gets new high-powered trains

first_img16 January 2015When a new batch of diesel locomotives was unloaded off the ship at the Cape Town harbour on 14 January, Transport Minister Dipuo Peters walked towards the Afro4002 loco and kissed it.She said the delivery of the locos was an exciting moment for the government and the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) because they would go a long way in reducing travel time, providing comfort and reliability, and improving efficiency.The arrival of the four locomotives follows the unveiling of the first one – the Afro4001 diesel locomotive – at the Cape Town Station in December. “We are happy that when we said 2015, the first trains would be landing in South Africa in January 2015, there is the delivery of the train. We are very excited,” Peters said.“At different times this year, trains will be delivered. One of the key things the government is focusing on, between 2014 and 2019, is to improve public transport, in particular our drive to move people from road to rail. This is part of the initiative because in that way, we will be able to deal with the carnage on the roads. We will be able to reduce the number of people who actually die.”She was accompanied by the chairperson of the Prasa board, Popo Molefe, and the agency’s group chief executive, Lucky Montana. Prasa is a state-owned enterprise responsible for most passenger rail services in South Africa.The new locomotives are expected to contribute to the rail operator’s plan to modernise South Africa’s rail infrastructure, including rolling stock, signal upgrade, infrastructure rehabilitation, station modernisation and new locomotives for long distance passenger services.All in all, 70 high-tech locomotives are expected to be delivered over the next few months, comprising 50 Euro Dual electro-diesel and 20 Euro 4000 diesel locomotives. As they arrive, Prasa will test them on the track until March; thereafter, the locos will start operating from April this year.Peters said the Afro4001 diesel locomotive had already been tested. On one test-run, it pulled up to 50 coaches over a notable distance. These types of locomotives brought modernisation as well as faster delivery.“We. want to also improve the ability of people to move faster on rail because people are saying I don’t want to spend hours on end on the train,” she said.The locomotives are highly powered and are designed for multipurpose use. They can pull freight and passenger coaches. The trains will run along six long-distance corridors, including the Johannesburg to Cape Town route. As soon as Prasa receives new stock during the first half of the year, this will be increased to 10 corridors.Peters said the government was investing R172.3-billion in the next 10 years to fast track the modernisation of rail and move public passenger transport to rail; of this, R3.5-billion had been used to manufacture 70 locomotives. About R51-billion would go towards the manufacturing of 600 new trains for Metrorail, which operates commuter rail in urban areas.Molefe said the 70 locomotives were being manufactured in Spain. Prasa would receive the first 20 of these within the next six months. “Over time we have had to deal with high levels of frustrations from our people, who use our trains, because of slow journey times and overcrowding, resulting in the passengers losing faith in rail as a mode of choice.“What we see today will immediately see the reduction of travel time on our long- distance passenger rail services as part of our commitment to providing high-quality passenger services,” he said.Source: SANewslast_img read more

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F2 Logistics dumps Iriga City, seals top quarterfinal slot

first_imgMalditas save PH from shutout MRT 7 on track for partial opening in 2021 Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH La Salle, Ateneo duel for all the marbles Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games The Fatted Calf and Ayutthaya: New restos worth the drive to Tagaytay ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims “It’s going to be an awesome match-up against Cocolife,” said Cignal import Alexis Matthews, who hammered in 19 points.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MOST READ Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ F2 Logistics brushed off Iriga City, 25-11, 25-17, 25-16, Saturday night to formally clinch top spot at the close of the Chooks to Go-Philippine Superliga Grand Prix elimination round at FilOil Flying V Centre.The Cargo Movers actually tied the Foton Tornadoes and Petron Blaze Boosters with similar 7-1 records but carry the highest point quotient among the leaders.ADVERTISEMENT Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. After 30 years, Johnlu Koa still doing ‘hard-to-make’ quality breads F2 Logistics will again face Iriga City in quarterfinals.Even with a depleted lineup, Cignal HD still proved too much for Victoria Sports-UST in the first game and hammered out a 26-24, 25-16, 25-14 victory.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingIn the absence of injured frontliners Jovelyn Gonzaga and Rachel Anne Daquis, the HD Spikers used their experienced to the hilt and posted their fourth win in eight matches, which sealed their place in the top 4.Cignal will thus face No. 5 team Cocolife in the knockout quarterfinals starting next week. LATEST STORIES View commentslast_img read more

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Education Ministry Continues Project to Improve Reading

first_img The project provided support to the Education Transformation Programme in 250 primary schools in its first two years. The initiative is consistent with the Government’s 2013/14 priority focus on human capital development. Story Highlights The Ministry of Education remains steadfast in its efforts to achieve quality education through the transformation of the sector, using a number of non-traditional tools and measures.To this end, the Ministry recently took over the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)/Jamaica Basic Education Project (JBEP), which was previously implemented and managed by United States (US) Contractor, Juarez and Associates, Inc.The project, which began in 2010, provided support to the Education Transformation Programme in 250 primary schools in its first two years, and in its third year, aided the Ministry with improving the reading skills at Grades 1-3 in 172 schools across Regions 1, 4 and 6.Steered by a team headed by Project Director, Dr. Jean Beaumont, the JBEP expands on the previous Expanding Educational Horizons and New Horizons for Primary School projects, as well as best practices from the Caribbean Centre for Excellence in Teacher Training.The initiative is consistent with the Government’s 2013/14 priority focus on human capital development in the area of education.Addressing the recent symbolic handing over ceremony, at the Jamaica Conference Centre, Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, said there is a “new wave” of effort and understanding regarding how education must be imparted.The first three years of the project was to help schools to manage responsibilities of accountability; introduce practices and materials which enhance reading progress; and contribute to an increase in early grade reading fluency from Grades 1 to 3.The USAID/GOJ project empowers principals and teachers with the necessary strategies and resources; establishes and reinforces standards for teacher and principal accountability; support personnel in the education regions to pass down transformation practices in non-project schools in those regions; and work with the Jamaica Teaching Council, to train and provide technical assistance.The resources created from the project were accessible to all schools, not just those involved in the JBEP.These include: reading assessment checklist for Grades 1-3; reading standards and benchmark for Grades 1-3; checklist for principals to monitor the use of these standards; procedures for successfully managing and supervising the reading programme; strategies for effective teaching of reading comprehension; and tools for continuous reading assessment and a manual.Technology resources for the 172-project schools include: desktop computers (in some schools), laptops, multi-media projectors, digital cameras, and the Jamaica School Administrative System (JSAS), which are available to all schools.Dr. Beaumont explains that the project was mandated to develop remedial instruction for Grade Three teachers, which resulted in Camp Summer Plus workshops  over the past three years.Using their JSAS portals, administrators and teachers were able to tell how many classes were at each site, how many students were enrolled, and the number of staff involved. Some 900 students were tracked and reports provided for seven camps in 2012.For 2013, Camp Summer Plus participants were trained in data analysis and interpretation with emphasis on the implications of their findings for instruction, based on the outcomes of the 2012 camp. The participants were also introduced to areas that needed special attention.Thirteen Reading Coaches were engaged in 33 project schools, across three regions, and were working with the students in the specified grades to help improve instructional practices in reading.Meanwhile, Principals were assisted with improving supervisory and management skills in teaching how to read. These practical interventions saw coaches hosting school-based reading workshops, co-teaching, demonstrating reading strategies; monitoring schools reading programmes; and interpreting information to guide instruction.The reading coaches also helped schools to make better use of the reading standards developed by the project. Reading modules and handbooks were distributed to guide early grade reading.Additionally, teachers and principals were trained in the use of the Ministry of Education/USAID’s electronic database (JSAS). The system helps to minimize the time teachers allocate to administrative duties, to enable more time for teaching. It stores and generates reports involving school personnel (board, staff, students), school plant  attendance and grade. More than 170 educators were trained to use the system.Rev. Thwaites says with the continued use of reading coaches and peer trainers, the reading progamme is being extended into more schools.He urges principals to ask for the assistance they need. “It is not a shame to say that you need help; that your students require more than you can give,” the Minister adds.Dr. Beaumont describes the project as having been “an extraordinary learning experience,” noting that, “the consistent improvement in students’ performance levels has proven that we must persevere.” The USAID/GOJ project empowers principals and teachers with the necessary strategies and resources.last_img read more

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