Olympic and Paralympic sports outside the World Class Programme will be able to bid for additional investment to help more talented athletes compete at Tokyo 2020, Sports Minister Tracey Crouch announced today.The £3 million Aspiration Fund will allow sports who do not currently receive full UK Sport funding to develop plans to help teams and athletes qualify.Sports eligible to apply for the fund include all the unfunded summer Olympic and Paralympic sports, the new sports for the Tokyo Games and those currently in receipt of individual athlete medal support plan funding from UK Sport.Alongside their qualification plan, sports seeking funding will be asked to submit details of how they will capitalise on the impact of competing at the Games and engage and inspire communities.The plans will also need to align with the outcomes set out in the Government’s Sporting Future strategy to redefine what success looks like in sport: physical well-being, mental well-being, individual development, social and community development and economic development.Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, said:“The Aspiration Fund will give more sports the chance to inspire the nation and shine at Tokyo 2020 and beyond. This £3 million bridges a gap between grassroots and elite funding, and will help sports grow and develop future champions.”“UK Sport investment has transformed Britain into an Olympic and Paralympic powerhouse. But there are sports, not on UK Sport’s world class programme, that do a huge amount of good in communities that we can help on their path to the podium.”Liz Nicholl, CEO of UK Sport said: “This new Aspiration Fund is a fantastic opportunity for some sports to get on track for the Tokyo Games.“Many of the sports we are currently unable to support, while further away from reaching the podium, have great potential not only to inspire through their performances on the field of play but also to have a genuine social impact in communities across the UK.“We’d like to thank the Government for their continued support for UK Sport’s mission to inspire the nation through Olympic and Paralympic success.”The grants will run to the end of the Tokyo 2020 cycle.Notes to EditorsGrant recipients are likely to be announced by UK Sport in December 2018. Grants from the Aspiration Fund will be capped at £500k for team sports and £275k for individual sports. Grants from the Aspiration Fund will run to the end of the Tokyo 2020 cycle.
CALGARY — Suncor Energy Inc. says its upstream production in the last three months of 2018 hit a quarterly record.Canada’s largest integrated oil and gas company says production averaged 831,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, up 12 per cent from the third quarter.Oilsands operations produced approximately 433,000 barrels per day in the quarter, while total production from exploration and production was 90,000 boe/d.In its outlook, Suncor maintained its December production guidance for 2019 that forecast production growth of 10 per cent even after production cuts imposed by the Alberta government.The province announced mandatory production curtailments for the industry this year in a bid to reduce a glut of oil and help boost low prices.Suncor’s full fourth-quarter results will be issued Feb. 5.The Canadian Press
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The first reading of the 2018/2019 Amended Annual Budget was presented at a recent School District 60 meeting.Dori Alger, School District Controller, presented the Amended Annual Budget to Board Trustees.Alger says the budget is primarily based on student enrollment for the year, adding that it is very difficult to determine student enrollment. “A key piece of our budget is always based on student enrollment. For the 2018-19 year, we are anticipating 6,193 students. It is very difficult to truly predict how many students we are going to have, but we definitely do our best and we deal with the consequences as the school year progresses.”Amended operating revenues for the School District are $64,046,589.The operating revenues include items such as Provincial Grants and rental and leases of School District property.Amended operating expenses for the School District are $64,287,592.Operating expenses include items such as staff salaries, utilities, and student transportation.The total of the Amended Annual Budget is $76,707,361. The Board gave and passed the first reading of the Amended Budget. The Board made a motion to do the second and third readings in short form.The Amended Annual Budget must go through three readings before it can be accepted by the Board.
Mumbai: The information technology services sector is estimated to clock a flat growth of upto 9 percent in the fiscal year 2019-20, a report said Monday. The growth will be at par with the 9.1 percent growth achieved by the sector in FY19, according to industry lobby Nasscom. The grouping has discontinued a 25-year-old practice of coming out with growth estimates citing the changes in the landscape which makes the job harder. Domestic rating agency Icra said the sector will clock a 7-9 percent growth in $in FY20 mainly on demand for digital solutions. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal”The earlier small-scale proof of concept digital projects has started evolving into enterprise level larger implementations coupled with improvement in discretionary spend supporting future growth,” its vice president Gaurav Jain said. The traditional mainstay of banking and financial services will experience some weakness on low interest rates, focus on cost optimisation and managing discretionary spending, it said, adding that insurance companies are supporting the growth. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostFirming oil prices will lead to some discretionary spends by energy firms on digital spends and give the IT firms some good news, while retail is also showing improvement in the first nine months of FY19. From a profitability perspective, the rating agency said margins were flattish in the third quarter of FY19 on pricing pressure, increased regulatory costs, wage inflation and higher onshore hiring and sub-contracting cost necessitated by visa curbs. However, the overall margins are estimated to decline to 20.8 percent in FY20 for its 19 sample companies from 22.5 percent in FY18. Indian companies have started to ramp-up on-shore hiring in its largest market of US on visa issuance norms being tightened by restricting the entry-level programmers coupled with increasing compliance and evidence requirements adding to cost pressures, it said. There will be higher consolidation in the industry, especially among the small and mid-size players, owing to margin pressures in the next decade, it said. From a credit outlook perspective, the rating agency said it expects some stability on the ability of the sector to sustain free cash flows.
Washington DC: The F-21 multi-role fighter jet will give India a “significant edge” with greater standoff capability, American defence giant Lockheed Martin has said and claimed that producing it locally will also strengthen the country’s integration into the world-wide network of advanced fighter aircraft technology. Lockheed Martin during the Aero India show in Bengaluru in February unveiled the F-21 multi-role fighter jet for India, to be produced locally. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The Maryland-based company, which had earlier offered its F-16 fighter jets to India, said the F-21 addresses the IAF’s unique requirements and integrates India into the world’s largest fighter aircraft ecosystem. Lockheed Martin and Tata Advanced Systems would produce the F-21 in India. Vivek Lall, vice president for strategy and business development, Lockheed, said, While it is inappropriate for us to compare specific capabilities, the F-21 will give India a significant edge with greater standoff capability, greater staying power with less fuel burn, and network data linking capabilities across all platforms. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KThe tactics India employs with the F-21 will also be different – uniquely developed by the Indian Air Force, he said. “The F-21 will meet all of India’s performance, capability and advanced technology requirements – the same requirements all other 4th generation competitors are offering. As we pursue cutting-edge technologies for the F-21, some capabilities may be evaluated as discrete, integrated functions, Lall said. Refuting reports that the F-21 fighter jet is rebranding of the F-16, Lall said that while aircraft structures may look familiar, the differences become clear when looking at the unique capabilities of the F-21. This includes an Advanced APG-83 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, which has detection ranges nearly double that of previous mechanically scanned array radars and the ability to track and attack more targets with higher precision, he said. It has an Advanced Electronic Warfare (EW) System, developed uniquely for India, that provides enhanced survivability against ground and air threats; Long-Range Infrared Search and Track (IRST), enabling pilots to detect threats without detecting them and Triple Missile Launcher Adapters (TMLAs) allowing the F-21 to carry 40 per cent more air-to-air weapons, he said. The F-21 proposal is unique in that the F-21 production line will be in India, and Indian industry will also be integrated into the global F-16 production and sustainment ecosystem. Approval by the US Government for such an important strategic move signals a significant development in US-India relations, Lall told PTI in an interview. “The unmatched ecosystem we will partner with Indian industry and Lockheed Martin’s top suppliers to develop will further strengthen India’s integration into the world-wide network of advanced fighter aircraft technology and cutting-edge production and sustainment, he said. The F-21 also demonstrates Lockheed Martin’s commitment to India: to deliver an advanced, scalable fighter to the Indian Air Force that also provides unrivaled industrial partnership opportunities, he asserted. PTI
New Delhi: India’s largest IT services company Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) said it has deployed an integrated solution for India Post that has helped modernise a network of more than 1.5 lakh post offices in the country. In 2013, the Mumbai-based company had announced receiving an over Rs 1,100- crore multi-year contract from the Department of Posts (DoP) for an end-to-end IT modernisation programme. The partnership was aimed at equipping India Post with modern technologies and systems to enable it to offer more services to the customers in an effective manner. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscal “At the heart of this transformation is the Core System Integration (CSI) program designed and implemented by TCS. This involved deploying an integrated ERP solution that caters to mail operations, finance and accounting, and HR functions, and connects its vast network of more than 1.5 lakh post offices, making this the largest distributed e-postal network in the world,” TCS said in a statement. The integrated solution supports requirements of over five lakh employees, services over 40,000 concurrent users, and processes over three million postal transactions a day, making this one of the largest SAP implementations globally, it added. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boost On the front-end, TCS said, it has implemented its Point of Sale (PoS) solution across 24,000 post offices with over 80,000 PoS terminals and has also built a web portal with consignment tracking capabilities, and set up a multi-lingual call centre for customer support. “An important objective of the transformation is to use the department’s nation-wide reach to drive financial inclusion and accessibility of citizen services in remote areas. “This is being accomplished through over 1.3 lakh DARPAN 1 hand-held devices that Gramin Dak Sevaks use to provide postal, banking, insurance, and cash management services in remote villages, even those without network connectivity,” TCS said. TCS Business Group Head (Public Services) Debashis Ghosh said postal services across the world are reinventing themselves to stay relevant to a new generation in the digital era. “We are proud to have partnered with the Department of Posts in this pioneering, mission mode initiative to build a world class, future-ready digital platform that the nation can be proud of. With this, the department can offer smart postal services, enriched customer experiences, and innovative value-added services to the citizens of India,” he added.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday reserved verdict on petitions challenging its December 14 judgment against a probe into the controversial fighter jet deal. The court also reserved its orders on the contempt proceedings against Congress president Rahul Gandhi.A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi reserved its verdict on a batch of petitions seeking review of its December 14 judgment last year which had dismissed the pleas challenging India’s agreement with France to procure 36 Rafale fighter jets. Also Read – 2019 most peaceful festive season for J&K: Jitendra SinghLawyer Prashant Bhushan, during two-hour-long hearing, referred to various aspects including alleged suppression of material facts from the court and said that an FIR should have been lodged and a criminal investigation launched into the case. He also referred to the documents relating to alleged parallel negotiations being undertaken by the PMO and said that three members of the Indian Negotiation Team had objected to the parallel negotiations. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroadHe said that a prima facie cognisable offence has been committed and it warranted registration of the FIR. Attorney General K K Venugopal, appearing for the Centre, objected to the review petition and said that the basic grounds for seeking review of the verdict are the same as they were in the main petition. The petitioners are seeking review of the judgment on the basis of secret “stolen documents”. He also referred to the secrecy clause of the inter-governmental agreement between India and France and said that this matter pertains to defence deals and not to the award of contract for construction of flyover or dams. Venugopal sought dismissal of the review petitions. In the contempt case, Congress President Rahul Gandhi told the Supreme Court that he has already tendered unconditional apology for “wrongly attributing” to it the “chowkidar chor hai” remarks and the criminal contempt proceedings against him should be closed. A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi reserved the verdict on the criminal contempt plea filed against him by BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi. Senior advocate A M Singhvi, appearing for Gandhi, told the bench, also comprising Justices S K Kaul and K M Joseph, that the Congress President has already tendered unconditional apology and has expressed regret over the wrongful attribution to the apex court. Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Lekhi, told the bench that the apology tendered by Gandhi should be rejected and action must be taken against him as per the law. Rohatgi also argued that the court should ask Gandhi to make an apology to the public for his remarks.
CIN0.00.0PIT15.85.411.01491 ATL0.00.0TB0.00.00.91470 NO74NO67NO 31, PIT 28-6.6– PICKWIN PROB.PICKWIN PROB.ResultREADERS’ NET PTS DAL100.00.0NYG0.00.00.91488 TEN62.147.1IND37.847.094.71552 IND74IND75IND 28, NYG 27-1.4– CHI68CHI73CHI 14, SF 9+0.9– Elo’s dumbest (and smartest) picks of Week 16Average difference between points won by readers and by Elo in Week 16 matchups in FiveThirtyEight’s NFL prediction game MIA61MIA61JAX 17, MIA 7-2.2– KC100.00.0OAK0.00.00.51492 DEN61DEN62OAK 27, DEN 14-3.1– PHI66PHI51PHI 32, HOU 30-14.7– CLE60CLE66CLE 26, CIN 18+2.6– The best matchups of Week 17Week 17 games by the highest average Elo rating (using the harmonic mean) plus the total potential swing for all NFL teams’ playoff chances based on the result, according to FiveThirtyEight’s NFL predictions KC54KC56SEA 38, KC 31-5.0– CAR62%CAR51%ATL 24, CAR 10+9.5– NE100.00.0NYJ0.00.00.81467 Team ACurrentAvg. Chg*Team BCurrentAvg. Chg*Total ChangeGame Quality DEN0.00.0LAC100.00.01.01518 LAR77LAR83LAR 31, ARI 9+0.7– MIN72.0%+/-31.6CHI100.0%+/-0.063.41597 BUF0.00.0MIA0.00.00.81395 HOU100.00.0JAX0.00.01.21489 LAC66LAC67BAL 22, LAC 10-3.5– MIN55MIN63MIN 27, DET 9+4.4– There are a few other games with playoff probability on the line. As mentioned earlier, the outcome of the Eagles’ game with Washington is very much of importance to the Vikings, who would clinch with a Philadelphia loss. The Cleveland Browns’ matchup with the Baltimore Ravens has done the unthinkable — made Pittsburgh Steeler fans root for the Browns — since a Baltimore win would eliminate the Steelers from the postseason picture. Baltimore could still make the playoffs with a loss, but the Ravens would need Pittsburgh to lose its game against Cincinnati, which is also happening simultaneously at 4:25 p.m. ET. (In related news: Are you ready for a completely insane Sunday afternoon of football?)Although other games could determine seeding, and there are a few stray percentage points of playoff odds’ difference at stake around the league, those are basically the games that will carry the most weight in Week 17, and we can’t wait to see how they all play out.FiveThirtyEight vs. the readersWhile you’re prepping for the playoffs, be sure to check out FiveThirtyEight’s Elo ratings using our NFL prediction interactive, which simulates the rest of the season 100,000 times and tracks how often each team should make the playoffs and win the Super Bowl. Did you know you can also pick against the Elo algorithm in our prediction game? Maybe you can also climb up our giant leaderboard.Here are the games in which Elo made its best — and worst — predictions against the reader picks last week: ARI0.00.0SEA100.00.00.61451 Home teams are in bold.The scoring system is nonlinear, so readers’ average points don’t necessarily match the number of points that would be given to the average reader prediction. PHI28.020.0WSH0.00.040.81512 GB57GB59GB 44, NYJ 38-0.3– OUR PREDICTION (ELO)READERS’ PREDICTION CAR0.00.0NO100.00.00.51587 NE84NE83NE 24, BUF 12-2.0– Game quality is the harmonic mean of the Elo ratings for the two teams in a given matchup. Total Change adds up the potential swing in playoff odds for every team in the league (not just the two teams listed).*Average change is weighted by the likelihood of a win or loss. (Ties are excluded.)Source: ESPN TEN73TEN74TEN 25, WSH 16-1.4– LAR100.00.0SF0.00.01.21499 It’s the last week of the NFL’s regular season, and that means it’s time to game out all of the fun playoff scenarios facing each team.Here at FiveThirtyEight, we like to measure the most important games of the week based on how much they swing every team’s odds of making the postseason (across every team in the entire league). And by that standard, you can’t top Sunday night’s game between the Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans, which will shift around nearly 95 total points of playoff probability. (Really, that’s for the two teams involved — the winner will make the playoffs and the loser won’t, which effectively makes it a play-in playoff game.) Oddly, it’s only the third time ever that the Titans will play in NBC’s flagship Sunday night game (the last was in 2009), while for the Colts, it will have been exactly 60 years and two days since they beat the New York Giants for the NFL title in the Greatest Game Ever Played, which helped make TV-spectacle games like this one possible.That may not be the best game of Week 17, however. We also like to include an element for team quality, and Titans-Colts is still just the No. 13 team in our Elo ratings against No. 14. When the Minnesota Vikings face the Chicago Bears, it will be No. 6 vs. No. 11 in Elo, and it’s a game that has plenty of playoff significance in its own right. The Vikings wouldn’t automatically miss the playoffs if they lose, but they would not be in great shape (35 percent), while they would clinch with a victory. And the Bears have plenty to play for as well; a win and a Rams loss would help them get a first-round playoff bye. Of course, fans of the Philadelphia Eagles will be watching this game closely: A Vikings win would end Philly’s season, while a Bears win would give the Eagles a chance to play their way in. (Both games kick off at 4:25 p.m. ET.) DET0.00.0GB0.00.01.41456 Playoff %Playoff % DAL75DAL72DAL 27, TB 20-3.2– BAL84.325.4CLE0.00.051.11524 After a shellacking at the hands of our algorithm in Week 15, readers rebounded slightly this week, losing by an average of 25.3 points. Philadelphia’s last-second win over Houston may have kept the Eagles in the playoff hunt, but it cost readers 14.7 points on average in our game. Readers did pick up 9.5 points on average in the Atlanta-Carolina game; though they incorrectly picked the Panthers to beat the Falcons, they did so by a smaller win probability than Elo.Congrats to Scott S, who led all users in Week 16 with an even 300 points, and to Greg Chili Van Hollebeke, who maintained his No. 1 ranking on the season with 1,075.4 points. Thanks to everyone who has been playing — and if you haven’t, be sure to get in on the action! You can make picks now and still try your luck against Elo, even if you haven’t played yet.Check out our latest NFL predictions.
OSU junior forward Jae’Sean Tate (1) looks for an open teammate during the Buckeyes home opener against North Carolina Central. The Buckeyes won 69-63. Credit: Ashley Nelson | Sports DirectorThe Ohio State men’s basketball team opened up its 2016-17 home schedule on Monday night against the North Carolina Central Eagles out of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference. In front of a crowd that seemed to be less than the 9,787 reported people in attendance, the Buckeyes underwhelmed in what many thought would be an easy blowout victory.OSU won Monday night’s affair versus the Eagles 69-63 in what was a flashback to the 2015-16 team that strung together several games of uninspired play. OSU was still able to come away with a victory in a game that looked similar to last season’s early losses to Texas-Arlington and Louisiana Tech. However, there were hardly any positives other than it was a win. The performance was so discouraging that junior forward Jae’Sean Tate offered an apology to the Buckeye faithful after the game.“We didn’t come ready to play today,” Tate said. “This one is on us, as the players. We didn’t come out like we had practiced. I apologize to Buckeye Nation and we’re going to try our best to go out there on Thursday and play as hard as we can.”After Friday’s season-opening victory in Annapolis, Maryland, against Navy, OSU coach Thad Matta said that there were times in which he could tell his players weren’t “thinking the game.” Monday at the Schottenstein Center was a bit more concerning to Matta, who said he couldn’t pinpoint the reason behind the absence of a competitive mindset.“We, for whatever reason, we weren’t thinking. Some things happened that I’ve never seen happen before in terms of 38 practices,” he said. “We weren’t mentally and physically very tough. We obviously got to get that corrected.”In the Navy game, the Buckeyes struggled at times to figure out the Midshipmen’s zone defense. Redshirt junior guard Kam Williams, sophomore point guard C.J. Jackson and redshirt junior center Trevor Thompson all came off the bench and provided a spark that ignited a sluggish offense.On Monday against NC Central, the difficulties against a zone were still present, but the bench was not there to boost the OSU attack. Williams scored 23 points in the first game of the season, including 5-for-6 from 3-point land. It took him until 6:24 remaining in the second half for him to cash in his first 3-point bucket of the game. He scored just nine points in 31 minutes.Thompson grabbed seven rebounds and scored six points in 17 minutes and was a factor in the second half. However, the amount of dispassionate play on defense left much to be desired after 40 minutes.Junior forward Keita Bates-Diop followed up his 14-point, 14-rebound game against Navy with just nine points and two rebounds on Monday night. After the game, Matta said that Bates-Diop had been out of practice for the past two days with an illness, which contributed to his lack of production.Without Bates-Diop and senior forward Marc Loving, who sat with foul trouble for much of the game, OSU couldn’t produce a lot of offense against several zone and man-to-man looks NC Central threw at the Buckeyes.“We did some things that were so uncharacteristic … we never had that flow,” Matta said. “We got work to do.”With OSU up 12, Jackson made a steal off of an inbounds pass and patiently waited for Williams to dart down the lane. Williams bobbled the pass and his shot was blocked, which turned into a transition three on the other end. NC Central guard Patrick Cole then hit another three on the next possession, trimming the lead to six for OSU. Cole torched the Scarlet and Gray with 26 points on 10-for-19 shooting.Another major factor was free-throw shooting. OSU shot just 11-for-23 from the line, including 1-for-4 down the stretch.Jackson played more minutes than sophomore starting point guard JaQuan Lyle for a second straight game. Lyle had a minus-six plus-minus rating while Jackson had a plus-three. Jackson had eight assists compared to just two from Lyle.Matta said that before Thursday’s game against Providence, there could be a few changes in the lineup. For Tate, he knows that OSU can’t win many games based on its play on Monday.“We just got to make sure it’s not a repeat of last year. We can’t be lackadaisical. We got to be the first team to punch the other in the mouth.”