Eritrean cyclist Teklehaimanot, king of Italian mountains


This 6 May 2017 Daniel Teklehaimanot – Post race interview – Stage 2 – Tour of Italy / Giro d’Italia 2017.

Today, Eritrean cyclist Daniel Teklehaimanot arrived first on a second category climb in the mountains of Sardinia island, in the second stage of the Giro d’Italia race.

This meant that Daniel Teklehaimanot took over the King of the Mountains jersey (a blue jersey in the Giro).

After Teklehaimanot had already been King of the Mountains in the Tour de France, as first African ever, now he is the first African ever in the Giro’s blue jersey.

This will generate big enthusiasm in Eritrea, where cycling is popular.

Teklehaimanot is a member of a South African team.

There is also a new leader in the general classification after this second stage: Greipel from Germany, the winner of today’s bunch sprint.

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‘Paleontological’ football club in Winterswijk


This 18 August 2015 video is about a match in the Dutch football cup competition between two clubs from Winterswijk: FC Winterswijk and FC Trias.

FC Trias got its name because it is a fusion of three earlier clubs.

However, the club grounds are also not far from the Winterswijk quarry. Where muschelkalk stone from the Triassic, over 200 million years ago, is mined. The Triassic got its name from its three distinct rock layers. The Dutch word for Triassic is Trias. In the Winterswijk quarry, recently, a Triassic beetle was discovered; and,earlier, Triassic marine reptiles.

Footballing refugees succesfull in Greece


This video says about itself:

(15 Feb 2017) A former Greece national football player is heading a project to help refugees stranded in Greece regain a sense of purpose.

The team that former goalkeeper Antonis Nikopolidis helped build is called “Hope” and made up of players who fled war zones like Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Most players live in a large trailer park at Skaramagas, an industrial zone west of Athens, where metal containers are turned into shoebox-shaped homes.

They train during the week, and on Sundays play in an amateur league against teams made up of professional groups like lawyers, telecom workers, and accountants.

Football’s governing body in Europe, UEFA, sponsors the refugee team as well as Greek charity Organisation Earth, which spearheaded the idea for the team.

Nikopolidis, who was key to Greece’s stunning 2004 European Cup victory, says the team provides a distraction for team members who face an uncertain future in the European Union’s slow-moving relocation programme.

Football is the main source of entertainment for many of the 60,000-odd refugees in Greece, housed in army camps, abandoned factories and disused facilities of the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Nearly 9,000 refugees have been moved from Greece to other European Union countries, but the EU says the speed of relocation is still just over half the target rate.

Several Hope players have been lost to the relocation scheme, but most are expecting a long wait in Greece.

“I think the main thing is that we’ve created a group of friends, a family with bonds of friendship,” Nikopolidis said.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Footballing refugees win (almost) everything in Greece

Today, 07:08

“Run, run”, the players shout on the soccer field to a team-mate sprinting past the high fences. The training of the refugee team is about to begin, on the artificial grass field of Atromitos amateur club at Piraeus. “That’s Tufan, from Afghanistan. He’s always late,” says a laughing Syrian boy.

That is a well-known problem, assistant coach Abdullah Sulleman, who comes from the Iraqi city of Mosul, explains. Public transport is irregular from the refugee camp. By bus and metro it takes about an hour to get to the training site.

There in Skaramagas refugee camp all began last year. It is one of the largest camps in Greece, with more than 3000 people living in container houses. Many are waiting for a verdict on their asylum procedure, relocation to EU member states or family reunification.

That often long wait leads to boredom and frustration. Boys and young men tried to kill time with – of course – football.

“Then I thought why we do not make a team,” says Abdullah, who has done sports training in Iraq. “We started with a ball, without sportswear or soccer shoes. On a simple concrete ground.” …

By calls on Facebook, and after selections, eventually 25 players were selected, a trainer and doctor appointed and a technical manager. He is a well-known person: ex-keeper Antonis Nikopolidis from the Greek national team who became European champions in 2004. …

“We now have a team of players from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Yemen and recently from Morocco and Tanzania. They play in an amateur competition, against, eg, company teams, and are doing very well.”

“We’ve only lost two times,”said 23-year-old Mohammad Omar Shurdji of Damascus proudly. “Winning more than twenty times,” adds Abdessadek Chahine, a tall Moroccan boy from Casablanca, who has lived for a year and a half in Greece. Who also plays at a Greek club. 25-year-old Mohamed Wael Sefi played at an Aleppo club before leaving his country. “Soccer is all, it’s my life,” he says.

What the young players of this team, most of them between the ages of 18 and 25, have in common is that they played competition in their homeland, some at high level. Their dream is to play at a European club.

No obstacle racing because of nesting lapwings


This video shows a northern lapwing at its nest in the Netherlands.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Mud run” canceled at the last moment because of nesting northern lapwings

Today, 10:48

A mud-running event in Amersfoort was canceled at the last minute because lapwings nest on the ground. The organization of the Mudrun Fun in Vathorst district discovered the birds yesterday and concluded that they will not run today.

A few hundred people would participate in the event, including children. The intention was that they would run on a trail with mud, obstacles and a water slide. It was the fifth edition of the event.

Yesterday nothing seemed to be wrong; then the organization was alerted that the birds were nesting. The lapwing is a protected native species and has been declining in numbers. The organization therefore considered it irresponsible to let the event continue, despite the permits already issued by the municipality.

English Hillsborough football disaster, 28 years ago


This video says about itself:

15 April 2017

The Hillsborough disaster happened 28 years ago, 96 people were killed in the man-made catasrophe.

It has taken 28 years for the first charges to be laid against any of those culpable in the killing of 96 Liverpool football fans. They were crushed to death on April 15, 1989 at Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough stadium, South Yorkshire: here.

RELATIVES of the 96 people killed in the Hillsborough football stadium disaster looked on in court yesterday as former chief constable Sir Norman Bettison faced criminal charges relating to the tragedy: here.

Famous Greek footballer helps refugees


This video is about the Greek national football team unexpectedly winning the 2004 European championship by beating favourites Portugal in the final match.

A big factor in the Greek victory was their goalkeeper Antonis Nikopolidis. He stopped many dangerous shots by Cristiano Ronaldo and other Portuguese players.

As Dutch daily De Volkskrant reports today, Antonis Nikopolidis now is 46 years old, and still involved in football. He is a trainer for refugees from the wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan, stuck in Greece because of anti-refugee policies in European countries.

Football helps the refugees cope with their terrible memories of bloody wars, and with their uncertain present.

How a project to help refugee women is making American produce a lot more interesting: here.

Nigerian women bobsleigh team to Olympics?


This music video from Jamaica says about itself:

The Bobsled Song

13 February 2014

Song by Sidney Mills & Jon Notar, and Groove Guild.

Download the Bobsled Song … and press play the exact moment our Jamaican Bobsled Team begins their big race … . You’ll be amazed how the song syncs perfectly with the rhythms of the bobsled track itself.

After the Jamaican men’s bobsleigh team, this news from the BBC:

The Nigerian bobsleigh team racing towards history

29 March 2017 Last updated at 20:52 BST

Fighting freezing winds, bone-breaking speed and up to five g-force, the Nigerian women’s bobsleigh team are training hard in western Canada.

Driver Seun Adigun and brakewomen Ngozi Onwumere and Akuoma Omeoga are all former professional track and field athletes.

Their practice times on the ice run are fast – and they are aiming for a historic first. No bobsleigh team from Nigeria or any country in Africa has competed at the Olympics.

The team’s dream is on the verge of coming true. The Nigerian bobsleigh team only needs to complete three more competitions to qualify for the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea.

This video says about itself:

9 December 2016

Nigerian track stars Seun Adigun, Akuoma Omeoga and Ngozi Onwumere are determined to make history by being the first bobsled team to represent the African continent at the Olympics.