Rights holder doubts Sunwolves will help grow rugby in Asia

first_imgSingapore – The Sunwolves’ entry into Super Rugby is unlikely to grow the game around Asia, according to the sport’s new rights owner in the region who believes showcasing more local action online will have a greater impact.The Tokyo-based franchise, which will also play matches in Singapore, began the Southern Hemisphere competition with a 26-13 home defeat against South Africa’s Lions on Saturday after a tumultuous preseason spent trying to assemble a team. GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMES The expansion into Asia is expected to increase the revenues of tournament organizer SANZAR, but New Zealander Tim Martin, who has scooped up the rights to show Super Rugby matches in 23 Asian countries, wondered what else a Japanese entrant brought.“I don’t think the Sunwolves will do a huge amount for Asian rugby,” he told Reuters in an interview in Singapore this week after securing the rights deal.“I think they will do a lot for Japanese rugby but they won’t do a lot for Malaysian rugby. I don’t see how those dots join.”Martin, a former advertising executive, made waves when his Coliseum Sports Media snapped up the rights to show English Premier League soccer matches in New Zealand using his online platform in 2013.He took a bold leap then for a fledgling start-up — albeit backed by a U.S.-based billionaire — but believes Japan would have been better off taking a conservative approach to growing the game after the World Cup win over South Africa last year.“Why leap into Super Rugby, which is the hardest, most competitive rugby competition in the world,” he said.“The Sunwolves could be a disaster, I hope not and I don’t think they will be but they could. Nobody wants to watch a team get whipped.”As well as showing the Sunwolves and Super Rugby around Asian countries, he also bagged Rugby Championship matches, European internationals and domestic action from England, France, South Africa and New Zealand among others.He admitted the $14.99-a-month subscription could prove too costly outside the expat-heavy markets of Hong Kong and Singapore and did not expect many people in Myanmar or Bangladesh to subscribe and watch the English league final.But he said his online model meant no increased cost for running matches in multiple countries and opened doors to the inquisitive few in Bhutan and beyond.He believed adding local rugby to his portfolio would help attract audiences and showcase a pathway to the elite, adding he also planned to make some All Black internationals free to view.“I think we have to make rugby bigger in Malaysia and Singapore and Korea and I think that’s about getting younger people into it and access to more content and all that stuff,” he said.With rugby’s inclusion in the Olympics this year, the sport is tipped for big growth in playing numbers.Martin said the number of Asian unions had doubled to 32 in the last 10 years and that there were 400,000 registered players in Asia — outside of Japan.“I reckon rugby in the region can become a significant thing. It’s right on the cusp,” he said.He said he wanted to eventually grow from 23 countries to 200, leaving the sport’s traditional bases, like New Zealand and England, alone and showing rugby online to new audiences around the world where television companies have overlooked the game.Asia, though, with its young, tech-obsessed population that could easily access his platform, was first priority. He said New Zealand and the bigger unions had failed to maximize their name by selling individual rights in different markets like he has.“There are a whole bunch of fragmented unions. Its chaotic, we think there is a role for an aggregate,” he said.“It will help turbo-charge the game’s growth.” IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5 KEYWORDScenter_img Super Rugby, Sunwolves RELATED PHOTOS The Sunwolves’ Akihito Yamada (right) tackles Jaco van der Walt of the Lions during the Sunwolves’ Super Rugby debut at Prince Chichibu Memorial Ground last Saturday. | REUTERSlast_img read more

‘Rapid Notify’ Emergency Alert System Available For Peninsula Residents

first_imgThe Kenai Peninsula Rapid Notify system is used to provide critical information to residents during emergency events. This tool can send out recorded voice messages to Kenai Peninsula homes on local phone lines within minutes. September is National Preparedness Month and Alaskans should take time to assess their emergency plans. To read suggestions for beginning your preparedness plans by visiting the Office of Emergency Management’s website.  Previously the system was only able to contact landline telephone numbers. However, due to increasing popularity and usage of cellular phones,  it became necessary to include wireless device numbers in the database.If you are interested in voluntarily registering one or more of your wireless devices with Rapid Notify, click on this link Self Registration Portal. Dan Nelson with the Office of Emergency Management says Kenai Peninsula residents should start preparing for an emergency situation with two things: “Making sure that you can communicate with the family, consider establishing a meeting place in case you’re separated and teaching younger children where to go and giving them cards with that information. Folks can stay informed with these types of disruptions by registering their phones for our Rapid Notify system so they get emergency messaging.”center_img FacebookTwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Watching the natural disaster unfold in Texas is very sobering. So many times, people have no disaster preparation and preparedness plan in place. Residents of the Kenai Peninsula may register their mobile devices with the Borough to get updates in the event of an emergency. For the full story:last_img read more

Brentford beaten at home by clinical Reading

first_imgBrentford 1 Reading 3Brentford paid the price for a sloppy first half as they fell to a second straight league defeat.A header from former Fulham striker Orlando Sa and Nick Blackman’s free-kick gave Reading a two-goal lead at half-time.AdChoices广告Brentford improved considerably after the break and Lasse Vibe pulled a goal back midway through the second half with a stunning effort from distance.But despite dominating territory and possession in the final 20 minutes, the Bees couldn’t muster an equaliser and Reading wrapped it up deep into injury time when Blackman netted a penalty.Reading, without a league win in four games this season, went in front on 17 minutes when Blackman – who had just hit the bar – provided a cross for Sa to head home.Bees keeper David Button then kept Reading at bay with a string of saves, denying Stephen Quinn, Hal Robson-Kanu, Daniel Williams and Blackman.But he was beaten by Blackman’s excellent free-kick, after a foul by James Tarkowski, to put the Royals in command.The second half was a virtual role reversal, with Harlee Dean heading over from a corner and Vibe shooting over from the edge of the box.The Dane got it right on 67 minutes with an effort from 25 yards which went in via the far post and Brentford then camped themselves in Reading’s half.The closest they came was in the sixth minute of a lengthy stoppage-time period when Jake Bidwell’s centre came off Vibe and dropped narrowly wide.Reading hit Brentford on the break and Button brought down Blackman, who made no mistake from the spot to confirm the victory. Brentford: Button; Colin, Dean, Tarkowski, Bidwell; Judge, Diagouraga (McCormack 37), Kerschbaumer (Saunders 83); Gogia (Clarke 46), Hofmann, Vibe.Subs not used: Bonham, Barbet, O’Connell, Udumaga. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebook See also:Bees boss has high hopes for incoming striker Djuricinlast_img read more

Latvian U-16 basketball players finish the Baltic Cup with victories in…

first_imgLatvian U16 girls basketball team Photo: LBSThe Latvian U-16 women’s basketball team won all three Baltic Cup games this weekend.On Sunday, the Latvians closed the tournament in Kaunas with a victory 84:58 (21:15, 22:19, 24:12, 17:12) beat their peers from Estonia.As in the games with both Lithuanian teams, the Latvians were superior in the fight against baskets (50-41) and in the accuracy of three-point shots (9/19 – 4/24), as well as often intercepted the ball (18-11) and skillfully used the mistakes of opponents (29 -16).On Sunday, Katrīna Ozola had 19 points and nine rebounds, Luize Sila had 16 points and nine balls under the baskets, Andija Sedliņa had 13 points, but Līva Liniņa had 12 points and ten rebounds.As in the conversation with the Latvian Basketball Union (LBS), Aigars Nerips, the head coach of the Latvian U-16 national team, emphasized that all players, including the leaders, still have a lot of work to do to improve and stabilize their skills.“Several basketball players have good prospects, provided they continue to work. The Lithuanians had divided their players into two approximately equal teams. Both victories did not come easily, but every time we found opportunities to neutralize the opponents’ trumps and take advantage of their weaknesses. By joining forces, Lithuanians will be stronger, but we would not be weaker. In addition, for various reasons, several basketball players stayed at home, who could have helped, ”LBS quotes Neripa.At the beginning of the last match, after a collision, unpleasant injuries came to life and two main basketball players – Raina Tomašicka and Tīna Grausa – could not continue the game.“Others had more playing time, and our dominance was not particularly affected. The organizers of the tournament, this time without consulting the coaches, awarded the prize for the best player of our team to Louise Sila, but the most valuable player of the whole tournament was Raina Tomašickas, who was more diverse this time than before. It is nice to end the summer work cycle with three victories. We have used the difficult time usefully, promoting the progress of the players, ”said Nerips.On Friday, the Latvians won the Lithuanian “white” team with 76:64, but on Saturday with 78:58 they defeated the “green” team of the southern neighbors.Meanwhile, the U-16 men’s team finished the tournament with a success of 77:61 (13:18, 15:10, 25:21, 24:12) played against the Estonians.Latvians prevail in three-pointers (10/32 – 3/23), in the fight for rebounds (50-40), but more mistakes (21-16).Dāvis Ozers scored 19 points, Mārtiņš Zuments 13 points, but Christopher Karlson and Ernest Ločmel had ten points each.The head coach of the Latvian U-16 national team Agris Galvanovskis concludes that there is a feeling of unfinished work, because no real opportunities were used to win the third match.The Lithuanian “green” team did not have bright talents, but everyone worked with great fighting spirit, collecting 23 balls at our basket. We did not lack centimeters, but they were not enough. Overall, we played better than in the winter tournaments, but the results should not be overestimated. Lithuanians, combining all the best forces in one team, would be more powerful, this time the Estonians were not helped by a 210 cm long leader who trains in the “Real” system of Madrid, “LBS quotes Galvanovskis.Galvanovskis emphasizes that Latvia does not lack talent against the background of its opponents, but the rival teams were more fierce and sportier.Many people still want to get the result by playing in “white gloves”, but in modern basketball it does not go through. When conclusions are drawn, the result also appears. As today, when we broke the Estonian resistance in the second half, ”says Galvanovskis.Dans Galdiņš received the award for the best player of the Latvian team.On Friday, Latvia overtook the Lithuanian “white” team with 78:75, but on Saturday with 75:81 it lost to the Lithuanian “green” team.Composition of the Latvian U-16 women’s team for participation in the Baltic Cup in Kaunas:Enija Vīksne, Marta Zariņa, Katrīna Ozola (all – “Riga” / TTP), Madara Liepniece, Elizabete Feierberga, Raina Tomašicka (all – “Riga” / “Center”), Līva Kristiāna Gode, Andija Sedliņa, Tīna Grausa, Luīze Sila (all – RBJSS / “Rīdzene”), Līva Liniņa (“Rīga” / ”Jugla”), Valērija Baranovska (“Daugavpils”).Composition of the Latvian U-16 men’s team for participation in the Baltic Cup in Kaunas:Kristofers Karlsons, Dans Galdiņš, Markuss Mamajs (all – “Rīga” / DSN), Kristofers Krivišs (“Rīga” / ”A.Kraukļa VEF BS”), Markuss Lastiņš (“Ogres BS”), Ernests Ločmelis (“Rīga”) / Basketball class ”), Mārtiņš Zuments (IMSS,“ Rīga ”/” Basketball class ”), Dāvis Dāvids Ozers (“ Valmiera ”-“ Ventspils University College ”), Rūdolfs Rudmiezis (“ Cēsis ”-“ Valmiera ”), Armands Gailišs ( “Ezerzeme”), Frederiks Meinarts (BS “Ķeizars”, “VEF school”, “Rīga” / DSN), Pēteris Pinnis (IMSS – “Salaspils”, “Rīga” / “Centrs”).last_img read more