32SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr How Small Acts Can Equal Big ImpactAuthor and serial entrepreneur G. Shawn Hunter is the founder of Mindscaling. His latest book, Small Acts of Leadership: 12 Intentional Behaviors That Lead to Big Impact, argues that it’s the simple things, when done extraordinarily well, that make a great leader.Shawn and I talked about his book and how it’s not always the most extraordinary, sweeping actions that make the biggest impact.I love this philosophy because all of us can make just a few adjustments and improve our leadership today.Do One Thing At A TimeYou advocate that small, incremental choices can lead to a big impact. In your research for this book, what one small choice have you noticed in the most successful leaders? continue reading »
Press Association Saints have enjoyed a successful season on the pitch under the Argentinian manager, but things off it have been tumultuous since the turn of the year. The shock departure of executive chairman Nicola Cortese in January led to widespread talk of a meltdown at St Mary’s, with m any wondering whether Pochettino would follow him out of the club. However, eight weeks on, the 42-year-old remains at the St Mary’s helm and reports this week even suggested he was in advanced talks over a new deal. Pochettino was coy when quizzed about his future on Friday morning, but was keen to point that his existing contract runs to the end of the 2014-15 season. “I do have one more year on my contract, don’t I?” he said. “That also doesn’t guarantee anything in football either.” Pochettino’s future is likely to depend on how his relationship with Krueger develops. Fresh from helping Canada to ice hockey gold at the Winter Olympics, the Canada-born German was named chairman of the holding company, St Mary’s Football Group Limited, on Tuesday. Krueger has been handed responsibility by owner Katharina Liebherr to lead the club forward and spoke glowingly about Pochettino and his staff upon his appointment. “Of course it is always nice to hear someone has spoken nicely about someone and I thank him for that,” the Saints boss said. “It is clear that this club needs tranquillity after all the upheaval that happened at the beginning of January. “There are two months left in the league competitions, a lot of changes this club is going through at this moment and it is clear right now we need good words to move forwards in a calm and relaxed manner at this football club.” Surprisingly, Pochettino has not spoken to Krueger since his appointment was made official, although they are meeting on Friday lunchtime. The pair have met on several occasions in recent months and the Saints manager is looking forward to hearing what the new chairman has to say, with his thoughts on holding on to Luke Shaw and Adam Lallana likely to be particularly interesting. “I think that is going to be more of a private conversation that I am going to have with him,” Pochettino said. “He is the new chairman and I am pretty sure that he is going to have a lot more things to tell me than I am going to have to tell him. I look forward to listening to him.” Krueger will oversee his first match as chairman on Saturday, when Southampton host Norwich in the Barclays Premier League. Jack Cork will miss the game and the next few weeks after sustaining an ankle injury in last weekend’s win at Crystal Palace, while his replacement Victor Wanyama is a doubt. Back-up goalkeeper Kelvin Davis is the only other injury concern heading into a match which Pochettino believes will play a big part in where they end the season. “Right now we’re in ninth position in the table and we want to be eighth,” he said. “That is basically our goal at the moment. “We always want to be climbing positions and Saturday is an important game to do that. “We want to win points as much as we can, want to climb positions as much as we can from here on to the end of the season. “To be in the top 10 teams I think is a very good growth for this team and a very important thing for this football club.” Mauricio Pochettino expects to be at Southampton next season and is looking forward to working with newly appointed chairman Ralph Krueger.
The Global Cleantech Innovation Programme for small and medium enterprises aims to train, mentor and give access to participating entrepreneurs annually. This promises to boost job creation in the country.Four South African women-owned companies score big at this year’s Global Cleantech Innovation Programme gala. The event aims to train, mentor and empower SMEs. (Image Supplied)Melissa Javan Three South African small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will attend the Cleantech Open Global Forum in San Francisco, US, in February 2017.Yolandi Schoeman of Baoberry, Pamela Alborough of SanAqua and Martin Ackermann of Thevia won awards at the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme for SMEs in South Africa (GCIP-SA) in Johannesburg.At heart, Cleantech is green technology. It refers to any process, product or service that reduces negative environmental impacts through significant energy efficiency improvements, the sustainable use of resources, or environmental protection activities.The Cleantech Open Global Forum will be hosted from 6-10 February 2017.The GCIP-SA is implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (Unido) with funding by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). In South Africa, Unido partners with the Technology Innovation Agency as the execution and hosting institution for the GCIP. Cleantech Open, based in the US, serves as the main knowledge partner of the global programme.The GCIP-SA focuses on promoting clean technology innovation aimed at addressing the most pressing energy, environmental and economic challenges of our time.At the GCIP-SA gala evening this year, held on 20 October 2016, businesses owned by women dominated the awards: five of the six awards were won by women. Schoeman walked away with two – the overall winner and Most Promising Woman-Led Business. The others were:Pamela Alborough of SanAqua – one of two runners-upSandiswa Qayi of Amahlathi Echo-Tech – winner of Most Promising Youth- Led BusinessLouise Williamson of Sustainability Professionals – winner of Innovation for Social Impact Small business is big businessIn her keynote speech at the GCIP-SA gala and awards, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor explained that by creating a platform to link South African cleantech entrepreneurs with investors and business and commercial partners, the programme aimed to contribute to the commercialisation of new products and services, and ultimately job creation.The intention of her department was “to exploit the creative abilities of the innovators in our country so that they can establish viable businesses and produce globally marketable products that put South African innovation on the world stage… and show that we as South Africans are capable people”.In September, Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe said: “A total of 47% of our country’s people are employed by the small business sector. That is 7,3-million people.” To him, small business is big business.This means that the GCIP-SA is in line with the National Development Plan 2030, which has as an aim the creation of millions of jobs for South Africans.Sandiswa Qayi (right) of Amahlathi Eco-Tech won Most Promising Youth-Led Business at the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme for SMEs in South Africa (GCIP-SA) awards in Johannesburg on 20 October 2016. She shows Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor (left) her company’s innovation, Hot Spot, for geysers. (Image Supplied)The finalistsOut of more than 80 companies, there were 26 semifinalists for the GCIP-SA competition. Nine were in the energy efficiency category, six in water efficiency, five in renewable energy, four in waste beneficiation, and two in the new green buildings category.During the last week of July, the 26 semifinalists attended business clinics in Durban, Cape Town and Pretoria.They had one-on-one consultations with topic specialists in key entrepreneurial concepts at the clinics. The topics discussed included financing, intellectual property, product development, marketing and business modelling, all targeted at tackling specific challenges in their businesses. The Global Cleantech Innovation Programme for small and medium enterprises aims to train, mentor and give access to participating entrepreneurs annually. This promises to boost job creation in the country.Gerswynn McKuur, the national project manager of GCIP-SA, said the participants would benefit from the following services:Training through national academies, webinars, regional events and business clinics;Mentoring by local and international experts on business development and subject matter specialists;Access to capital through building relationships with strategic investors, angel groups, pitch panels, networking, and investor connect programmes;Showcasing innovations at regional events, national conferences, and through global media exposure.It was important to note, McKuur said, that GCIP-SA finalists and semifinalists from 2014, 2015 and 2016 were exposed to ongoing opportunities for mentorship and exposure to potential partners, customers and investors, and not only during the year in which they participated in the programme.”This is part of the GCIP-SA’s mandate of building and maintaining a platform and ecosystem for cleantech innovators in South Africa, and connecting them to relevant international networks.”For example, arrangements were being made through Unido for three participants to take part in a side event at CoP22 in Marrakech, Morocco, from 7-18 November this year.Through its extensive training and mentoring programme, McKuur said, the GCIP-SA helped SMEs and start-ups:to de-risk and make their businesses investor-friendly, thus contributing to their success and expansion; and,to introduce innovative new products into the market.In this way it was making a positive contribution to the South African economy.The winners’ projectsYolandi Schoeman of Baoberry is the overall winner of the 2016 Global Cleantech Innovation Programme for SMEs in South Africa (GCIP-SA).Schoeman also won Most Promising Female-Led Business for 2016 for the aWetbox, or “wetland in a box”. The aWetbox is “a cost-effective, low-maintenance, carbon sequestrating solution to assist municipalities (critical infrastructure needs) and low- to high income home owners to improve water quality with downstream business opportunities.“It is an integrated grey water treatment and rainwater harvesting and treatment system for water optimization, availability, re-use and treatment.“Pamela Alborough of the company SanAque HCA is a runner-up. Her innovation, the Hydrochemical Activation Treatment (HAT System) is “a small, electronic water treatment component.“It is modular so is capable of improving treatment of small to large quantities of water (from 1kl/hr up to very large plants). The system uses no chemicals, requires low skills to operate and by disrupting and coagulating harmful pollutants, cleans water more cheaply and effectively than ever before.“Martin Ackermann, another runner-up is team-leader of the company Thevia. It manufactures Thevia roof tiles. The tiles are made from 99% waste materials, including crusher discard.They weigh a quarter of traditional concrete tiles but are twice as strong and not brittle (<0.1% breakage). Compared to the cheapest concrete tile, Thevia tiles provide an 8-15% cost saving on total roof installation.Sandiswa Qayi of Amahlathi Eco-Tech won the award for the Most Promising Youth-Led Business. The company’s innovation is Hot Spot for geysers.According to the Department of Science and Technology, 6.2 million geysers in the country on the grid consume 40% of monthly electricity; the average heating time for these geysers is 1.5 to three hours.The Hot Spot is explained as “a geyser sleeve/conduit that can be retrofitted over any standard geyser element. The Hot Spot’s solution is to push hot water from the bottom to the top of the geyser using thermosiphon.”It provides 50 litres of hot water within 30 minutes at 50 degrees Celsius for use by all households and small commercial users.”Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
Changes in today’s global landscape require emerging markets to consider how they must shape their own future, writes Brand South Africa CEO Dr Kingsley Makhubela. Many countries in the developed world have focused their efforts and resources inwards as a result of challenging economic times.Africa’s ability to trade and do business with itself is one of, if not the greatest opportunity for economic growth. (Image: Priya Pitamber)There is a danger that a shift away from emerging markets will negatively impact the global economy’s future ability to grow.This is especially critical for Africa, given its growing integration into the global economy in recent years. In order to mitigate this, Africa must take steps to secure its own share of global economic growth. And we must be able to sustain the economic growth of Africa ourselves.Yet the greatest opportunity to realise its growth potential is often overlooked, despite lying within the continent – Africa’s ability to trade and do business with itself. What is required is an inward and outward strategy acting in tandem; outwardly cementing Africa’s place in the global economy through foreign investment and improved trading links; while internally driving regional trade integration.It is no coincidence that Africa’s recent growth, epitomised by the “Africa rising” label was in part realised due to increased levels of foreign direct investment. Improvements in fiscal policies, governance and regulatory frameworks, along with a move to diversify economies away from Africa’s traditional commodities-biased economies presented greater opportunities to foreign investors.If Africa is going to capitalise on this base, it needs to work together to collaborate on its shared future. Africa’s development must be underpinned by further regional integration and trade liberalisation.While the rest of the world becomes increasing fractured and disparate, it is time for Africa to create ways to better integrate its fragmented markets which have long constrained growth and provided barriers to trade.World Bank statistics put intra-African trade at just 11% of the continent’s total trade between 2007 and 2011. In 2015, intra-Africa trade was worth just USD 170-million, according to the same institution’s figures when the potential stands at trillions of dollars.To collectively succeed, individual governments must work towards a regional imperative if Africa’s economies are to be impacted in a way that drives sustainable and inclusive growth for the continent as a whole. These regional trading corridors cannot work in isolation but must be scalable to improve connectivity across the African continent.This approach has been championed by such initiatives as the African Union’s Continental Free Trade Area. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) estimates that implementation of the Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) will nearly double intra-Africa trade by early next decade.We are seeing positive results from some regional trading corridors such as Southern African Development Community (SADC), Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and East African Community (EAC), but for Africa to be greater than the sum of its parts, we must learn to work together. This includes harmonising development and economic policies, regulation, market structure and governance, along with their implementation.Any regional initiative will need to be accompanied by huge investments in cross-border infrastructure. The African Development Bank estimates the continent would need to spend an additional USD 40-billion a year on infrastructure to turn around its current deficits and keep pace with economic growth.The rising trend of urbanisation is only serving to put pressure on an already inadequate infrastructure and demonstrate the urgent need for greater investment if living standards for Africa’s growing population are to rise. Conversely, the benefit of Africa’s growing population could help facilitate regional trade growth. A customer base of nearly one billion people provides the opportunity for not only regional opportunities, but access to the broader African market if only the continent’s industrial development plans can serve to improve productivity capacity.If we are looking to the rest of the world to show faith in the African growth story, then as Africans ourselves, we must demonstrate our own commitment. A collaborative approach to Africa’s own growth story driven by the continent itself will make it a stronger contender globally.South Africa is in the unique position of holding membership to several multilateral fora. As we take over the BRICS presidency for 2018 and as the only permanent African member of the G20, it is our responsibility to champion the case for Africa and its agenda by being at the nexus of discussions with our international counterparts. Moreover, Africa’s significance to our own economic future cannot be underestimated.We can reap the rewards of Africa’s tandem approach to growth. South Africa’s track record in doing international business makes its natural access point into Africa for the rest of the world. But we must have a clear strategy in our approach to Africa to ensure we also become part of the continent’s growth story. South Africa must continue to cultivate its role in facilitating positively impacts for Africa as this is where our own long-term economic success should lie.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.This article was first published on the World Economic Forum website.
The study also shows that more than half of all Internet users use a mobile, wireless connection, such as a laptop or cell phone. In December 2008, around 14 percent of these users were using a status updating service or microblog; now, that number has risen to one out of four mobile users. For non-mobile, non-wireless Internet users, 8 percent currently use Twitter, as compared to 6 percent last year. Mobile users also said they used their mobile devices primarily to stay in touch with others and access information online. Twitter use and status updates in general are on the rise among Internet users overall and several specific user groups as compared to 2008 and earlier this year, according to research just released from the Pew Internet Project.In December 2008 and April 2009, the organization’s studies showed that around 11 percent of Internet users were using a microblogging or status updating service. That number has now risen to 19 percent, one out of every five Internet users. The three major growth areas driving this increase are social network users, mobile web users and users younger than 44 years old.Results were based on a daily tracking survey of Americans’ Internet use and data fromtelephone interviews conducted by Princeton Survey Research International betweenAugust 18 and September 14, 2009, among a sample of 2,253 adults.Most importantly, each factor was considered independently. In other words, results for any particular group of users are not simply because that group is younger or generally more familiar with technology than other groups.Thirty-five percent of those who use social networks such as MySpace, Facebook or LinkedIn reported that they also use Twitter or a similar service, compared to 6 percent of users whose only social network is Twitter. Overall, around 49 percent of Internet users are also using social network sites. Tags:#twitter#web The final growth area identified in the Pew study was younger users. Those under the age of 44 reported a rapidly increasing adoption rate, from 19 percent last year to 37 percent last year. Users 45 and older, on the other hand, have been much slower to adopt Twitter or a similar service. Interested parties can view the full Pew report here. Related Posts jolie odell The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Interestingly, gadget geeks represent a large and growing group of Twitter users. Almost 40 percent of Internet users with four or more Internet-connected devices use Twitter. The fewer the gadgets, the less a user is likely to connect via a microblog or status updating service. Guide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Audit
RELATED ARTICLES On-Site Storage Is the Great EqualizerBatteries for Off-Grid HomesTesla Will Sell Home Batteries Are Solar-Plus-Battery Systems Coming to a Neighborhood Near You? Will a Merged Tesla-SolarCity Put a Solar-Powered Battery in Every Home? A path forwardWhile PV-plus-storage system costs continue to decline, they still remain relatively high for many residential uses on account of soft costs related to permitting and regulatory barriers. However, as utilities and permitting jurisdictions gain familiarity with residential storage systems, we anticipate that the residential storage market will grow at an increasing rate in the U.S.The work presented in this paper is an important step to help technology manufacturers, installers, and other stakeholders identify cost-reduction opportunities while also informing decision makers about regulatory, policy, and market characteristics that impede solar-plus-storage deployment. Technology costs are changing rapidly, and this cost benchmarking lays the foundation for ongoing tracking of improvements in real-world systems. The findings showed that declining costs for such systems, combined with retail price hikes for grid electricity, would make grid-connected solar-plus-battery systems economically optimal for customers in many parts of the country by 2030. Furthermore, solar-plus-battery systems can offer other important benefits to customers, such as backup power for critical loads in the event of a grid outage and cost savings via peak-demand shaving and time-of-use shifting. However, at the time, RMI’s study did not detail the exact nature of energy storage costs. By KRISTEN ARDANI and DAVID LABRADORThe residential solar-plus-storage market has certainly received a lot of attention in recent months. With the release of new, lower-cost products and implementation of utility time-of-use and demand-charge rate structures, the overall economics of photovoltaics (PV)-plus-storage systems continue to improve — but questions remain as to what’s ultimately needed to achieve widespread deployment.To better understand this market evolution, Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) explored the services and value that battery energy storage can provide, and is collaborating with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) on further research that examines the costs — and value — of PV-plus-storage systems.The first in a planned series of reports on this topic, Installed Cost Benchmarks and Deployment Barriers for Residential Solar Photovoltaics with Energy Storage: Q1 2016, provides the most detailed component- and system-level cost breakdowns for residential PV-plus-storage systems to date and quantifies previously unknown soft costs for the first time. The report also shares insights on market barriers to adoption. All economic viability is localThe component-level breakdown shows that hardware costs constitute just half the total price of the small-battery system and roughly 60% of the large-battery resiliency system. And the rest of the costs depend on where the system is installed: locality-specific costs and processes like permitting, interconnection, net metering, and fire codes can vary widely, affecting not only project costs but project timelines as well.Some of the biggest variables affecting the financial viability of grid-connected solar-plus-storage projects are the local utility rates, incentives, and ancillary benefit valuations. Often, the utility rate structure (e.g., whether it uses peak-demand pricing, time-of-use rates, and the like) is the primary factor determining the financial viability of adding storage to a PV system. Getting down to casesApplying these methods, we looked at two primary cases: one that we refer to as the small-battery (3-kW/6-kWh) case, and another that we refer to as the large-battery (5-kW/20-kWh) case. For each, we test sensitivities around two sets of alternatives: DC- or AC-coupling configurations, and retrofit or new installations. The distinction between DC and AC coupling determines whether the battery stores power directly from the PV panels or first converts it to AC power, which allows AC charging from both the PV panels and the grid.The small-battery case is designed for a typical customer’s self-consumption of electricity, including peak-demand shaving and time-of-use shifting, whereas the large-battery case is designed to support greater backup energy requirements for improved resiliency to outages.Here’s what we found: the benchmarked price of the small-battery case — which uses a 5.6-kW PV array and a 3-kW/6-kWh lithium-ion battery — is about twice as high as the price of a stand-alone, grid-connected 5.6-kW PV system (see the bar graph in Image #2, below). The DC-coupled system price ($27,703) is $1,865 lower than the AC-coupled system price ($29,568) for a new PV-plus-storage installation. The price premium for AC-coupled systems is mainly due to the hardware and labor costs associated with the additional grid-tied inverter required for AC coupling.However, installed price is not the only consideration when comparing AC- and DC-coupled systems: AC-coupled systems are more efficient in applications where PV energy is generally used at the time of generation, and DC-coupled systems tend to be more efficient in applications where PV energy is stored and used later.We also compared the small-battery case shown in that chart with the large-battery case that’s designed to increase resiliency by providing longer periods of backup power during grid outages. The larger system uses a 5.6-kW PV array with a higher-capacity 5-kW/20-kWh lithium-ion battery (see Image #3 below).The DC-coupled price of this resiliency system is $45,237, which is 63 percent more than the DC-coupled price of the small-battery system. With AC coupling, the price of the resiliency system is $47,171, which is 60% more than the price of the small-battery system. But in exchange for the increased cost of the larger system, a household could potentially cover critical loads for roughly four times longer than with the small system, other things being equal. Helping wildfires spreadBack in April 2015, RMI and partners including Global X and HOMER Energy published a study, The Economics of Load Defection, that examined how grid-connected solar-plus-battery systems will compete with traditional electric service. © 2017 Rocky Mountain Institute. Published with permission. Originally posted on RMI Outlet. Kristen Ardani is a solar program lead for Solar Soft Costs and Tech to Market at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). David Labrador is a writer / editor at RMI. Figuring out how to compare apples to applesTo break down the installed costs of PV-plus-storage systems today, RMI and NREL first analyzed data across a variety of existing studies from sources including Lazard and GTM, in addition to our own experience in the RMI Innovation Center.One challenge to analyzing component costs and system prices for PV-plus-storage installations is choosing an appropriate metric. Unlike stand-alone PV, energy storage lacks a standard set of widely accepted benchmarking metrics, such as dollars-per-watt of installed capacity or levelized cost of energy.Energy storage costs can vary both by the total energy capacity of the system — expressed in $/kilowatt-hour (kWh) — and the rate at which it charges or discharges — expressed in $/kilowatt (kW). Some consumers may prefer to optimize their system for longer-duration discharge, while others may have high peak demand and want to optimize their storage solution for power (kW) rather than energy capacity (kWh). Given the diversity of household preferences and load profiles, using a single metric can artificially distort reported costs — making it difficult to compare across varying systems. Therefore, we used the total installed price as our primary metric, rather than using a metric normalized to system size.To analyze component costs and system prices for PV-plus-storage installed in the first quarter of 2016, we adapted NREL’s component- and system-level bottom-up cost-modeling approach for stand-alone PV. Our methodology includes accounting for all component and project-development costs incurred when installing residential systems, and it models the cash purchase price for such systems, excluding the investment tax credit (ITC).
A 19-year-old girl, currently in hospital, has alleged she was gangraped by four men in Chunabhatti while on her way home from a birthday party last month. Her father initially registered an FIR on Wednesday with the Begumpura police station in Aurangabad, which on Friday was transferred to Chunabhatti police station for further investigation. “The victim, who is HIV positive, suffered a paralytic attack on July 14 this year, after which her father took her from Mumbai to Aurangabad, where the family hails from. During medical examination, doctors detected injuries to her private parts and asked her about it. She disclosed that she had been sexually assaulted in the intervening night of July 7 and July 8,” police inspector Deepak Surve, Chunabhatti police station said. According to a statement given by the victim’s father, The girl was staying in Mumbai with her brother and had gone for a friend’s birthday party. When she was returning home, she was allegedly accosted by four persons. The victim has not been able to identify the accused, the police said. “An FIR of rape and gangrape has been registered under the Indian Penal Code against the four unidentified men and further inquiries are underway,” Mr. Surve sad. The police are now obtaining footage of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras at and around the rough location that the victim has mentioned, to scan it for any clues regarding the identity of the accused. Inquiries are also being made with local informants and a team will be going to Aurangabad for further inquiries with the victim’s father, sources said.
Rio-Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu on Wednesday assumed charge as the Deputy Collector in the Andhra Pradesh Government.Sindhu was accompanied by her parents to the office of Chief Commissioner of Land Administrators (CCLA) where she took charge.She met district collector B Lakshmi Kantham in the evening and reported for duty.”I am really very happy. Today, I have joined and I am looking forward to it. I would definitely be taking the guidelines of the LLE people and move forward,” the Hyderabadi shuttler told ANI.”It’s a great feeling to serve for the country and serve the people,” she added.Sindhu was on July 27 issued an appointment letter for the post of Group-I officer in Hyderabad.Really very happy; It’s a great feeling to serve for the country & serve the people:Shuttler PV Sindhu after assuming charge as Dy Collector pic.twitter.com/bDjUMN3b4i- ANI (@ANI) August 9, 2017Presenting the offer letter, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu had said he is hopeful that Sindhu would surely bring more laurels to the country in the time to come.”Issued an appointment order to @Pvsindhu1 for the post of Group-1 officer. Hopeful that she’ll bring more laurels to the country,” Naidu had tweeted.To that, Sindhu had replied “Thank you for supporting me sir! I will work hard to bring more laurels to the country.”The 21-year-old shuttler has been working with Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) since 2013 and is currently an assistant manager (sports) at its Hyderabad office.advertisementAlthough Sindhu missed out on gold in Rio de Janeiro, she scripted history by becoming the first Indian woman athlete ever to win silver at the Olympics.She also became the fifth Indian woman to clinch a medal in Olympics history after Karnam Malleswari, Mary Kom, Saina Nehwal and Sakshi Malik.In a bid to honour the shining badminton star, the Telangana Government had felicitated Sindhu with Rs. 5 crore cash reward, a residential plot in Hyderabad, while the Andhra government presented her a cash award worth Rs. 3 crore.
OSU coach Urban Meyer during a game against Rutgers on Oct. 24 at High Point Solutions Stadium in Piscataway, New Jersey. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo EditorIt might have lost an unprecedented amount of talent to the NFL draft, but the Ohio State football team has begun to look toward the future as it resumed spring practice this week after taking some time off for spring break.Much of the conversation with OSU coach Urban Meyer on Tuesday was a reflection on the future of the program as it looks to withstand the departure of 16 starting offensive and defensive starters to graduation or early entry into the draft.Here are three key takeaways from the coach’s press conference as the Buckeyes continue to work toward the April 16 spring game.Stability on offenseWhile the Buckeyes might be missing big names like Braxton Miller, running back Ezekiel Elliott and wide receiver Michael Thomas, there is still some returning talent, anchored by redshirt junior quarterback J.T. Barrett and redshirt senior center Pat Elflein.Meyer emphasized the importance of their return, saying a team incorporating new players at those positions has no shot.“The fact that those two guys are back, we have a shot,” he said. “And I think we have a decent chance to be good on offense. And it’s mostly due to those two guys coming back.”Meyer also spoke highly of Barrett’s leadership, saying that he’s one of the best leaders the team has ever had.Joining Barrett and Elflein as the only other returning starter on offense is redshirt junior left guard Billy Price. Some players, such as redshirt junior tight end Marcus Baugh, got their feet wet as backups last season and are set to step in as starters. But other groups, such as wide receiver and the right side of the offensive line, have a lot of questions to be answered before the start of the 2016 season.New players, new pressureWith new faces being pushed into bigger roles, Meyer also spoke to the pressures that will be on those players expected to step up.“We try to put as much pressure on the players now because it’s not fair to put pressure on them in October,” Meyer said.However, he added that the coaching staff can prepare a player as best as it can, but sometimes the player simply cannot handle it once things step up.“There are a lot of great athletes who don’t respond to stress very well,” Meyer said.With only six returning starters, a lot of inexperienced guys will be turned to in an effort to make a name for themselves in the spring. Those names range from true-freshman early enrollees to players who have been on the team for several years, biding their time to step into the spotlight.Confidence at cornerDespite losing star cornerback Eli Apple to the NFL draft, Meyer expressed confidence in his defensive backfield in part because of cornerbacks Gareon Conley, Marshon Lattimore and Denzel Ward.Lattimore, a redshirt sophomore, struggled with a hamstring injury his first two years with the team. Meyer spoke highly of the Cleveland native.“Marshon has to stay healthy, he’s so talented,” Meyer said.Conley is one of the few returning starters for the team, starting all 13 games in 2015 as the No. 2 corner. The redshirt junior knows better than anyone about the importance of putting on a show in preseason practice sessions, as his performances this time a year ago helped cement his status as a starter for a defending national-champion team.Ward, who played in 11 games last season, made seven tackles, including two in the Fiesta Bowl against Notre Dame. The true sophomore is primed to compete with Lattimore for the starting cornerback spot opposite Conley.Meyer and the Buckeyes will continue their build-up toward OSU’s annual spring game, which is scheduled to kick off at 1:30 p.m. on April 16 at Ohio Stadium.
The Big Ten season is still more than a month away, but the early season tournaments that prepare the Ohio State softball team (7-3, 0-0) for the grind of conference play are starting to heat up. The OSU softball team travels to Cathedral City, Calif., on Friday to participate in the Mary Nutter Classic, where it will play five games over the weekend, two against ranked opponents (No. 11 LSU and No. 14 Arizona, both on Friday). “The Mary Nutter Classic is one of the premier tournaments every year, so of course the girls are excited,” said first-year coach Kelly Kovach Schoenly. “We’re going to play some ranked opponents … but the game doesn’t know who’s ranked, so you just have to go out there and play it.” The tournament comes about a week after OSU’s participation in the Jacksonville University Tournament, which saw the unranked Buckeyes go 3-2 on the weekend, including a 1-0 upset of No. 16/17 Louisville. “We came out strong,” said sophomore outfielder Taylor Watkins. “We should have beat some teams, but we did our best and stuck together in all the situations we were put in.” The biggest news from the weekend in Jacksonville was the emergence of sophomore pitcher Alex DiDomenico. The 5-foot-9 right-hander from Youngstown, Ohio, completed 15 innings for the weekend, holding batters to a .130 average. Her four-hit, eight-inning shut-out of Louisville was the centerpiece to a weekend that saw her named Big Ten Pitcher of the Week on Monday, her first such honor. “I was really happy about it,” DiDomenico said. “I was shocked actually, but I mean, it felt really good.” Her coach echoed the Big Ten’s praise. “I think Alex has grown a lot in the last six months,” Schoenly said. “When she hits her spots, she can have a lot of success, and I think it’s a really big confidence boost for her.” The Buckeyes sport a 2-1 record against ranked foes on the year. Their single defeat was a 6-1 loss against then-No. 8 Georgia on Feb. 8 in Athens, Ga., a defeat they avenged the next day with a 5-4 win. “The competition is what I’m really looking forward to,” DiDomenico said. “I think it will be a good experience … we’re just working to get better. We can never get too good.” Visit www.thelantern.com for the rest of this story. The Buckeyes are using these early season tests as measuring sticks as they head toward the Big Ten season, which for them begins on March 22 at home against Indiana. “It shows us who we can beat and how good we are and what we need to work on,” Watkins said. “It shows us that we can play against those ranked teams.” While OSU knows these early season games are valuable learning tools, the team knows the real test begins once conference play starts. Schoenly is focused on keeping the team concentrated on the present and getting better each day as conference season looms. “We fully expect to be better a month from now than we are now, because we’re better now than we were a month ago,” Schoenly said. “If they just keep buying into the fact that we need to continue to get better as the season goes on, we’ll be ready when conference season comes.” The Mary Nutter Classic begins Friday and ends Sunday. OSU is scheduled to play No. 11 LSU, No. 14 Arizona, California Polytechnic State University, San Diego State and Utah on the weekend.