Strettle back for Paddy’s Day clash

first_imgLATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS “David Strettle has now recovered from his injury and will replace Charlie Sharples, who gained valuable experience in Paris. It’s good to have Lee Mears on the bench and he will bring great energy and experience should he get a chance to come on.”England (v Ireland, Twickenham, Saturday, 17 March, 5pm): Ben Foden; Chris Ashton, Manusamoa Tuilagi, Brad Barritt, David Strettle; Owen Farrell, Lee Dickson; Alex Corbisiero, Dylan Hartley, Dan Cole, Mouritz Botha, Geoff Parling, Tom Croft, Chris Robshaw (capt), Ben Morgan. Reps: Lee Mears, Matt Stevens, Tom Palmer, Phil Dowson, Ben Youngs, Charlie Hodgson, Mike Brown. David Strettle returns to the starting XV on SaturdayDavid Strettle has recovered from a sternum injury to reclaim his place on the wing, in England’s only change to the starting XV who will take on Ireland on Saturday. Charlie Sharples, who stepped into Strettle’s left wing berth against France last week, drops out of the 22.Wasps hooker Rob Webber suffered a shoulder injury during the Paris victory, and he is replaced by Lee Mears on the bench.England head coach Stuart Lancaster said: “It seems like yesterday when we got together in Leeds in January and began a new journey for England rugby. Graham (Rowntree), Andy (Farrell) and myself firmly believe in this group of players and the direction we are going. Saturday is another step on that road and we are looking forward to coming home to a packed Twickenham with its special atmosphere and crowd. Their support has been phenomenal and we hope we can do the whole nation proud again.last_img read more

Gatland chancing his arm against Australia

first_imgWarren Gatland always backs himself and has made some bold calls ahead of Saturday’s decider against the Wallabies. CARDIFF, WALES – OCTOBER 01: Head Coach Warren Gatland of Wales prior to the 2015 Rugby World Cup Pool A match between Wales and Fiji at the Millennium Stadium on October 1, 2015 in Cardiff, United Kingdom. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images) Warren Gatland has never been afraid of making big calls and it’s fair to say he’s made a couple for Wales’ crucial Pool A clash with Australia on Saturday.The Kiwi who dropped Brian O’Driscoll for a deciding Lions Test, and selected 13 Ospreys in his first game in charge of Wales, has gambled on at least two players out of position in his backline, while the combination of Justin Tipuric and Sam Warburton will have the task of slowing down the Australian back row.Starting role for Justin Tipuric alongside Sam Warburton. Photo: Getty Images.While Wales are already assured a place in the quarter-finals, victory on Saturday would set them up with a likely last eight clash against Scotland, followed by a potential semi-final against one of Argentina, France or Ireland.Lose and they will need to beat South Africa and probably New Zealand just to better their performance of four years ago.With that in mind, there was never any question of using this game to rest a few players and try to ease some of the injury concerns in the squad, and Gatland has been bold in his selection.After watching England get taken to the cleaners by Australia at the breakdown, he has gone for the dual threat of Warburton and Tipuric, with a slightly injured Dan Lydiate missing out.Of course the Wallabies will be without the suspended Michael Hooper, but Sean McMahon looked in fine form against Uruguay and will be tough to slow down at ruck-time, while the key man in the back row remains David Pocock.If Wales can win that battle – and their pace in the back row at least gives them a chance – we should see more of their backs with time and space.With their midfield decimated, Gatland has plumped for George North at outside centre, a position in which he has never entirely convinced at Test level. Whether it will be enough to beat the in-form Australians is another matter entirely, but Gatland won’t die wondering.Wales: Gareth Anscombe, Alex Cuthbert, George North, Jamie Roberts, Liam Williams, Dan Biggar, Gareth Davies, Paul James, Scott Baldwin, Samson Lee, Luke Charteris, Alun Wyn Jones, Sam Warburton (c), Justin Tipuric, Taulupe FaletauReplacements: Ken Owens, Aaron Jarvis, Tomas Francis, Jake Ball, Ross Moriarty, Lloyd Williams, Rhys Priestland, James Hook.center_img LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS George North switches to centre to face the Wallabies. Photo: Getty Images.Tevita Kuridrani was quiet against England, but Michael Cheika will certainly plan to use him to challenge North early and often.Other injuries in the squad mean a first appearance for Gareth Anscombe, who comes straight into the team at full-back.More of a fly-half at age group level for New Zealand, he arguably played his best rugby at full-back during a Super Rugby-winning season for the Chiefs, and offers a big boot at the back.That means Liam Williams is again shifted out to the wing, having recovered from his knock to the head suffered against England, with Alex Cuthbert desperately trying to recover some form on the other.Up front it’s all change with the squad’s most experienced player, Gethin Jenkins, left out entirely as Paul James is fit to make his first appearance of the tournament.Samson Lee replaces Tomas Francis on the other side of the scrum, which will be severely tested.The selection of Luke Charteris may help in that regard, with the giant lock having seemingly learned to use his frame both at scrum-time and in disrupting mauls, another major Wallaby weapon.last_img read more

Valencia LRT under way

first_imgVENEZUELAN transport authority C A Metro de Valencia gave permission on September 4 for Siemens Transportation Systems to begin construction of the city’s US$80m light rail project. Phase 1 of the turnkey package covers the 6·2 km from Parque Recreacional to Avenida Cedeño (DM 97 p57), including eight LRVs to be assembled at Siemens’ plants in Sacramento and Carson, California. Subcontractors include Rail Transit Consultants Inc for interface co-ordination, HKC Inc and Safetran Systems Corp for signalling and train control, Mass Electric Construction Co for communications, and Redondo Construction Corp of Puerto Rico for the trackwork. Financing is being provided by the Royal Bank of Canada, Westdeutsche Landesbank and Bayrische Landesbank. Caracas Metro has awarded a US$89m contract to GEC Alsthom for refurbishment of 378 French-built cars up to 15 years old. The traction controls will be overhauled, an IGBT converter will replace the static convertor for auxiliary supplies, and electric circuit-breakers will be replaced by pneumatic units. GEC Alsthom staff will oversee the work at the metro’s depots, whilst Bombardier Eurorail subsidary ANF Industrie will be responsible for bogie refurbishment. The deal includes technical assistance and staff training from consultants Systra. The first unit is due to be completed by March 1998, after which work will proceed at the rate of two vehicles per month. olast_img read more

Trump Promises Stone No Prison Time: “He Can Sleep Well at Night!”

first_imgPresident Trump on Thursday promised that his longtime informal political adviser, Roger Stone, will not serve prison time.The commander-in-chief said the convicted Republican provocateur “can sleep well at night” while revisiting criticisms of former special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe.The pledge from the president came on Twitter, after Charlie Kirk, the founder of the conservative group Turning Point USA, wrote Tuesday that Stone “will serve more time in prison than 99% of these rioters destroying America,” in reference to the ongoing protests over the killing of George Floyd.“This isn’t justice,” Kirk added. “RT for a full pardon of Roger Stone!”Never forget:Roger Stone will serve more time in prison than 99% of these rioters destroying AmericaAll because he supports Donald Trump.This isn’t justice.RT for a full pardon of Roger Stone!— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) June 2, 2020 Trump shared the tweet and added, “No. Roger was a victim of a corrupt and illegal Witch Hunt, one which will go down as the greatest political crime in history. He can sleep well at night!”The president’s social media post represents just his latest involvement in Stone’s case. It also comes after congressional Democrats and Justice Department officials called out the president and Attorney General William Barr for involving themselves in the matter.No. Roger was a victim of a corrupt and illegal Witch Hunt, one which will go down as the greatest political crime in history. He can sleep well at night! https://t.co/HHg24tcZrx— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 4, 2020 Federal prosecutors requested last February that Stone be sent to prison for seven to nine years for interfering with congressional and FBI investigations into alleged connections between the Russian government and Trump’s 2016 campaign.After the president blasted the prosecutors’ sentencing recommendation in a tweet as a “horrible and very unfair situation,” the Justice Department then submitted a revised filing that did not specify a prosecution term, and said the initial proposal “could be considered excessive and unwarranted.”This is a horrible and very unfair situation. The real crimes were on the other side, as nothing happens to them. Cannot allow this miscarriage of justice! https://t.co/rHPfYX6Vbv— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 11, 2020center_img Soon thereafter, the four attorneys who led Stone’s prosecution resigned or notified the court that they were stepping off the case.Last month, nearly 2,000 former Justice Department officials signed a letter urging Barr to resign over his actions in the federal cases of both Stone and Michael Flynn, Trump’s former national security adviser who was also tangled up in Mueller’s probe.The Justice Department has already started to move to stop the case against Flynn. However, it is unclear how Barr will respond to the president’s tweet from Thursday.During a February interview, Barr described the Stone case as a “righteous prosecution” and said, “I was happy that he was convicted.”Other convicted associates of the president who were targets of the investigation into Russian interference, including former Trump attorney Michael Cohen and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, were recently released from prison into home confinement, due to concerns about the coronavirus.President Trump hinted earlier in the year that the self-proclaimed “dirty trickster” of GOP politics would not have to serve his full prison term, saying his former aide “has a very good chance of exoneration.”Stone said in April that he is “praying for a pardon,” and had been told by the Bureau of Prisons to report to begin serving his 40-month sentence by June 30.His appeal is still pending.last_img read more