1 July 2015While international surfing stars rode the waves at the Billabong Pro in Ballito, on the KwaZulu-Natal north coast, a dramatic rescue played out beyond the break today.A humpback whale became entangled in the shark nets off the coast of the seaside town and was freed by members of the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board.The drama was captured on camera by photographer Barry Bowditch. The lensman had been photographing surfers at the contest when he noticed a commotion beyond the break.“I was down at the beach shooting the Billabong Pro and I noticed the Sharks Board boats out there, so I started focusing on them. I only had a 400mm lens so I couldn’t really tell what was going on at first, then I noticed them cutting the nets and hauling them into the boat,” he said.“From what I saw the whale was docile. It was lying between the two boats and went berserk as it was released. That’s where all the spray comes from.”Sharks Board chief executive Mike Anderson-Reid said the saga of the whale began on 29 June when it was spotted near the nets at Salt Rock, north of Ballito. “On Monday, with the assistance of the lifesavers, we tried to herd the whale away from the nets. We noticed it had a serious skin infection and it wasn’t very receptive to being moved away. We thought it might strand overnight.“The gear [shark nets] was serviced and at about 11:00 on Tuesday I got a call to say the whale was in the nets. We responded and it was the same animal,” he said.“We carried out a normal disentanglement of the whale, which was between 7m and 8m long. It gave us a bit of a wake-up call now and then. When we did the final cut on the tail, the big splash came and it moved offshore.”Source: News24Wire
Real Madrid in contact with Genoa striker Krzysztof Piatekby Carlos Volcano9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveReal Madrid are in contact with Genoa striker Krzysztof Piatek.AS says sources close to the player have confirmed the approach.This contact claimed that conversations have taken place between Real Madrid and the Genoa striker’s representatives and that the Bernabéu “is following him” closely.These same sources also stated that they have been talking with “many great clubs” that are interested in the 23-year-old.However confirmed that Barcelona was not amongst those clubs, and that, as of yet, no formal offer has been made by any clubs. TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say
The No. 16-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes (3-0) will close out their non-conference schedule this Saturday, Sept. 22, when they host the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Coach Urban Meyer discussed his team’s upcoming opponent and Big Ten conference woes during the Big Ten coaches weekly teleconference Tuesday. Blazing Downfield Through two games, UAB (0-2) has been anything but prolific on offense. The Blazers rank 110th of 124 teams nationally in points scored, and failed to find the end zone last weekend against South Carolina. Nonetheless, Meyer said UAB poses concerns for his defense, particularly in the passing game. “They just throw it down the field a lot,” Meyer said. The Buckeyes have struggled defending aerial attacks so far this season, allowing an average of more than 283 passing yards per game. “We’ve seen enough big plays for a season, yet alone just three games,” Meyer said. “And this team is willing to launch it down the field. That’s an issue.” Big Problem for the Big Ten? In recent years Big Ten teams have struggled to compete nationally, consistently losing high-profile non-conference games and struggling during bowl season. The trend has continued this season. Only three teams in the conference remain undefeated, and at No. 16, Ohio State is the conference’s highest ranked team in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll. Meyer said there is only one way for Big Ten teams to silence the criticism and prove that they are among the nation’s elite conferences. “There’s one answer, go win those non-conference games,” Meyer said. “It’s not because of a lack of players or lack of coaching, they just have to find a way to close the deal. And I think they will.” Meyer said he hasn’t had a chance to watch much Big Ten football yet this season, but believes that there is still plenty of talent in the conference. “It’s a long season,” Meyer said. “There are a lot of things that will happen. I think there are a lot of great football teams in the Big Ten conference and I’m sure they will start to surface here real soon.”
Ohio State improved to 10-0 Saturday with a convincing win against Illinois, 52-22. While the result shouldn’t shock anyone – Illinois is likely the worst team in the Big Ten – this is an OSU team that has struggled against the likes of Indiana and Purdue. But everything was clicking for the Scarlet-and-Gray on Saturday, and OSU is now just two wins away from a perfect season. More than just Miller Sophomore quarterback Braxton Miller will continue to receive Heisman hype, but it was a collective effort on the ground for the Buckeyes, who piled up 330 yards rushing against the Illini. Carlos Hyde has been a revelation this season. The junior running back rushed for 137 yards and three scores, while averaging 7.6 yards per carry. It’s fairly easy to move the chains when your running back averages nearly a first down, and thanks to Hyde, the Buckeyes had no problem doing so against Illinois. All told OSU converted 32 first downs, a team best for the season. Defenses have to respect Hyde, and they occasionally over-commit when it looks like the physical running back is about to tote the rock through the middle. When the defense does, Miller is able to keep the ball on read-option plays, and scamper toward the undefended outside for big gains. Hyde’s power complements Miller’s speed and elusiveness and the duo have become one of the nation’s most lethal combinations on the ground. It should be comforting for Buckeye fans to know that each has eligibility to return next season, though Hyde potentially could flirt with an early departure for the NFL. Meanwhile, redshirt sophomore running back Rod Smith is piecing together a respectable season in his own right. Smith was ranked by ESPN as the seventh best running back prospect in 2010 coming out of Paul Harding High School in Fort Wayne, Ind., but it’s taken some time for him to live up to that billing. After redshirting in 2010, Smith opened the 2011 season as a potential breakout star. Instead he struggled with ball security, and was eventually buried on the depth chart. This year, Smith has quietly emerged as a solid backup option, and the coaching staff seems intent on getting him more touches. Smith caught his first career touchdown reception against Illinois, a 51-yard strike off a wheel route. The play featured a formation that the Buckeyes used a lot on Saturday, lining both Hyde and Smith in the backfield on either side of Miller. “It’s a great look,” coach Urban Meyer said. “That has always been in the playbook, but we never had enough confidence. Now we do. I think it was a productive set and I think you’ll see more of that.” Looking past the bye week OSU is off with a bye next weekend, and will return to action on Nov. 17 against Wisconsin in the team’s final road test. Wisconsin was a preseason favorite to win the Big Ten, but has been an up-and-down team all season. They will likely be on the down turn against the Buckeyes, playing without starting freshman quarterback Joel Stave, who was injured for the season last weekend. Wisconsin is a run-first football team, and without its starting quarterback it will rely even more on its ground attack. This plays right into OSU’s strength – though the Silver Bullets have struggled against spread offenses, power-run teams haven’t fared well against the Buckeye’s defense. The most comparable opponent to Wisconsin is Michigan State, and OSU held its run game in check earlier this year. OSU will have to overcome one of the Big Ten’s most ruthless road environments in Camp Randall Stadium, but it fared well in a similar test at Penn State on Oct. 27. With an extra week to prepare, OSU will be favored to do the same at Wisconsin. Then there is The Game, the finale against Michigan. With a potentially perfect record on the line, in Meyer’s first game against the Wolverines, expect to see a fired-up ball club on Nov. 24 in Ohio Stadium. Both games will likely be close contests, and OSU could very well be facing its two most talented opponents in the coming weeks. But the bottom line is, with two games remaining, OSU is in a favorable position to complete a perfect season. Give an extra helmet sticker to … Sophomore linebacker Ryan Shazier. Shazier led the team with 14 tackles, and he continues to assert himself as one of the team’s leaders on defense. Aside from Miller, there may not be a more valuable player on this team than Shazier. He has almost single-handedly legitimized the Buckeyes’ linebackers, which seemed to be the weak-link of the defense not too long ago. Because of a lack of depth and injuries, OSU features senior Zach Boren, a converted full back, next to Shazier at linebacker. Shazier has elevated his play the past three weeks, allowing Boren to settle within the defense. OSU’s defense as a whole has also looked improved the past three weeks, and that, by no means, is a coincidence.
Ohio State freshman midfielder Sage Darling receives a pass in the offensive zone against Rutgers on March 25. Credit: Courtesy of OSUThe Ohio State women’s lacrosse team (6-8) have not had the easiest path to get where it is at this point in the season, and it is not going to get any easier. The Buckeyes have three games remaining against three of the best teams in the country: No. 17 Northwestern, No. 1 Maryland and Johns Hopkins, who sits just outside the 20th spot in the Inside Lacrosse Poll.While OSU began to get its offense back on track against No. 6 Penn State — scoring 12 goals for the first time since March 7 — they will need to summon even more production in the remainder of their games. “I thought we had some good chemistry on the attack,” coach Alexis Venechanos said of the team’s loss to the Nittany Lions. “I thought we limited our turnovers in the midfield, and when you’re playing these conference games, those little details are going to matter.”Northwestern has, historically, been dominant against the Buckeyes, winning 13 of the 16 previous matchups, with OSU’s most recent win coming in a 2014 overtime game. Venechanos spent three years on the Wildcats’ staff (2004 to 2006) as an assistant, so it means a lot to her for them to be one of the big rivals in their conference. “It was a great learning experience. I learned a lot on the field and off the field,” Venechanos said. “(Northwestern coach Kelly Amonte Hiller) is a great competitor. She taught me how to compete, and I’m glad we have an opportunity to play them every year.”Hiller has led the Wildcats to seven NCAA championships, with last season being the first year that they had not reached at least the NCAA quarterfinals in 14 years. While Northwestern’s record at first glance is similar to the Buckeyes at 6-6, the Wildcats’ schedule has been stacked with great competition. The Buckeyes will still be without freshman midfielder Liza Hernandez, but they can still be capable of generating offense. Junior attacker Molly Wood and sophomore midfielder Baley Parrott have both stepped up to lead their team in scoring.“We’re working on ourselves right now,” Wood said. “We’re working on the little things, the fundamentals and to see those getting better is huge for our team.”OSU will be looking to continue its development as the season winds down, but Venechanos said they are most excited for the present. “We’ve challenged our players to get a little bit better from the previous week, the previous day and even in the drill we are doing — let’s get better this time,” Venechanos said. “We’re moving some people around, they’re stepping up.”The game is set for a 7 p.m. start time on Thursday, in what will be OSU’s first game of the season at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.