Tyson wows Donald Trump in a ‘Greatest Fight’ with Michael Spinks

first_imgBy Luke ReddyBBC, Sport boxing reporterTHIS was the greatest version of Mike Tyson, and Donald Trump wanted to make sure Frank Sinatra could see it.The current US president demanded the ring at his Atlantic City casino be lowered so that the legendary American singer did not have to arch his neck for a view of the action.After all that, Sinatra did not turn up on fight night – but Tyson did, with menace. And Michael Spinks was there too, briefly.Actors Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty were among the famous faces ringside in Atlantic City.It took 91 seconds. Spinks never fought again. A man with 34 straight wins, one of which had ended the 48-fight unbeaten record of Larry Holmes, was bowled over by fear, fury and ferocity.The 1988 bout – unpicked by Mike Costello, Steve Bunce and former world heavyweight champion David Haye as part of the new BBC Sounds Greatest Fights podcast – was the pinnacle for ‘Iron Mike’.Thereafter a cocktail of mismanagement, distraction, defeat and prison would turn an unbeatable force into a fallible human.Trump sat ringside. The $11M he paid to stage the bout worked out at around $121 000 a second.But the spotlight was on his resort and the Monday night fight allowed gamblers a full weekend to wager an estimated $344M (£282M) in the city’s casinos, almost $130M (£107M) more than an average four-day take.Tyson was bringing crowds – and fear – like no-one else in the fight business.Mike Tyson moved on to 35 wins from 35 fights by beating Michael Spinks.FEEL THE FEARIn the changing rooms, Tyson punches a hole in a wall after Spinks’ manager objects to the way his hands are gloved.“In the other changing room, the real story is how Spinks is falling apart,” says Bunce. “Emanuel Steward said Spinks told him he was not going to be able to leave that room.”In his white gown, 31-year-old Spinks raises his hand in the ring. Watching it back, Haye remarks: “He just looked petrified, absolutely petrified. I was about seven and remember fearing for him.”Tyson, three days short of his 22nd birthday, is pushed by a security-heavy entourage of around 100 through the crowds. The eerie accompanying music conveys to the 22 000 attendees that something menacing is in the air.Ring announcer Michael Buffer has already reeled off the names of around 80 celebrities at ringside. Sinatra may be missing but actor Jack Nicholson looks on as Muhammad Ali – who tipped Spinks to win – stands in the ring and tells his pick to hit and move.Within 45 seconds Spinks throws a right hand and Tyson ducks it before hammering back. If Spinks was tentative initially, such moments suck away even the faintest belief.“The punches Spinks are throwing are ‘stay-away-from-me’ punches, ‘how-long-can-I-last punches’,” remarks Haye.A left uppercut followed by a right to the body sends Spinks down for the first time as a professional. He nods, steps forward and instantly walks into a right hand that ends the show.Brief it may have been, but Ring Magazine named it round of the year. Spinks would later admit: “Fear was knocking at my door big time.”Costello says: “It was one of the most destructive performances in the history of the heavyweight division.”Haye replies: “I think this was the best Tyson there ever was. At this stage he is as unbeatable as you can ever imagine any fighter in history ever being. Prime Lennox Lewis, prime Muhammad Ali – whoever you say, they are going to have one of the hardest nights of their life against this guy.”Tyson had 35 wins and seemed unstoppable. He used his press conference to ask journalists why they ignored his boxing ability and only gave him credit for his ferocious knockouts.Bunce adds: “There was no-one at that time talking of what we talk about now – a great defensive boxer. All they talked about was annihilation.“That Tyson belongs with the greatest on great nights. Unfortunately where he went after that, with each calamity and disgrace, he starts to issue himself with an exit warrant from any top list. But on that night, that was a fighter that could go anywhere.”SINATRA’S ADVICE UNHEEDEDTyson picked up $22M for beating Spinks and held the three major heavyweight belts at the time. ‘Iron Mike’ had it all.But within months he and actress Robin Givens were heading for divorce, manager Bill Cayton was ousted and long-time trainer Kevin Rooney – who had steered Tyson’s career following the death of former trainer and father figure Cus D’Amato – was replaced.The few elements of consistency in an otherwise chaotic life had disappeared. Within two years his titles were gone too, surrendered to James ‘Buster’ Douglas in one of sport’s greatest shocks.A fighter who had become an icon for a generation of young would-be boxers had already seen his best days come and go.“If he is having that impact surely he belongs in the top 10 heavyweights of all-time but the argument against that is that on those nights he was really asked to find something he didn’t,” Costello says.Haye replies: “I find it hard to say someone is in the top five of all-time if they have never had to come back to win.“He was a baby in boxing terms, but at 21 he peaked. Had he had Rooney in the corner, people looking after him and investing his money, he could have been number one, without a doubt.”Less than four years after that night in Atlantic City, Tyson was imprisoned for rape. After his release a brief reign as world champion followed by losses to the likes of Evander Holyfield and Lennox Lewis. A career that promised everything, and delivered plenty, left behind too the disappointment of potential unfulfilled.“Listen kid, it’s not how good you’re doing, it’s how long you’re doing good,” Sinatra once told Tyson.We will never know how good Tyson might have gone on to be.But on the night in Atlantic City that Sinatra missed, he did not need long to do good.last_img read more

UEFA tournaments to be completed in ‘final eight’ format

first_img(BBC) – This season’s Champions League and Europa League competitions will be completed in August with ‘final eight’ tournaments in Lisbon, Portugal and in cities across Germany.The Women’s Champions League will also be a knockout tournament, in northern Spain between August 21 and 30.Competitions were suspended in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.UEFA also confirmed that all 12 original host cities will stage matches in the delayed Euro 2020 finals.That competition will now start on June 11 2021. The outstanding play-off matches will be staged during the international windows starting on October 8 and November 12, respectively.The club competitions will be played behind closed doors as it stands, but Aleksander Ceferin, the association’s president, did not discount the reintroduction of fans.“A month ago I couldn’t even answer if we can play the competition – now we will play, hopefully,” he said.“We haven’t decided about ‘no spectators or spectators’ yet. We will assess the situation at the beginning of July then we will see what the situation will be. It would be incompetent for us to decide in advance about a situation that is so unsure at this moment.”The Champions League will resume with the second-leg of the remaining last 16 games played on August 7 and 8 – Manchester City have yet to play their home leg against Real Madrid,Chelsea are away at Bayern Munich, Juventus are home to Lyon and Napoli are at Barcelona. UEFA said it has yet to decide whether to host the matches at the home grounds or at a neutral venue.The subsequent knockout rounds will be single-leg affairs and will be hosted in Lisbon between August 12 and 23. The final has been scheduled for August 23 in the Portuguese capital.Istanbul, originally appointed to stage the 2020 final, will now host the 2021 final.The Europa League will resume from August 10. The remaining last 16 games will be played on August 5 and 6.UEFA said: “A decision will be made in due course on whether these matches, for which the first leg has already been played, will be staged at the home team’s venue or in Germany.“Inter Milan v Getafe and Sevilla v Roma, whose first leg was also postponed, will be played as a single leg at a venue to be confirmed.”Gdansk, the original host for the final, will now stage next year’s climax.The Women’s Champions League, where Arsenal and Glasgow City have already reached the last eight, will be held in Bilbao and San Sebastian between August 21 and 30. The final will be in San Sebastian on August 30.UEFA added: “The finals of the coming years will take place in Gothenburg (2021), Turin (2022) and Eindhoven (2023) as originally planned.”last_img read more

Elliot Vieira records second successive win as SOAR continues

first_imgGUYANESE Elliot Vieira stormed the front row of the SOAR (Southern Ontario Association of Racing) and snagged his second chequered flag in as many weekends as superbike action continued in Canada over the weekend.The former Caribbean Champion Vieira returned to the Grand bend in Canada last weekend for his second weekend of Pro-sport 600cc action where he snapped up his second win.Qualifying on P2 during the Saturday Session, the Guyanese snagged the lead early on Sunday and never looked back, picking up his second straight win in as many weekends racing.He also snagged a second place finish in the 1000cc event aboard the same 600cc bike he had earlier used.On Saturday, Vieira contended that the bike was working well and he was confident of win.last_img read more

House to Hold Final Public Hearing on NFF Act Today

first_imgAnother bill for discussion at today’s hearing is the Act establishing the Nigeria Sports Anti-dropping Agency, the body responsible for carrying out all functions of the Nigerian anti-doping organisation.The committee will also discuss the bill for an Act to provide for the Administration and Management of Sports in the country.This body is to handle the establishment of sports institutions and facilities, harness sports development and to encourage and promote drug-free sports and recreation in Nigeria.Over the years, football stakeholders have clamoured for the autonomy of the Glass House from government control. But the government that has been funding almost all its activities has been exerting influence through the supervising Federal Ministry of Sports.Total government control has made it impossible for any incumbent president of the NFF (A) to seek re-election and most corporate bodies shy away from partnering the football federation.The administration of Alhaji Sani Lulu Abdullahi at its 2008 Congress approved the change of the then NFA to NFF in line with FIFA Statues.However, that change remained mere paper work as it has no legal backing.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Femi SolajaThe House of Representatives Committee on Sports is to hold a public hearing today on the bill proposing to repeal the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) Act.The Upper Chamber of the National Assembly (the Senate) had earlier conducted its own hearing on the same NFA act and passed it.Today’s public hearing in the lower chamber is scheduled to hold at the Conference Room 028, New building of the Assembly complex in Abuja starting from 10 am.In a paid advertisement signed by Rt. Hon Goni Bukar Lawan, the House Committee on Sports is inviting the general public and stakeholders to vent their airs on the bill seeking to repeal the Nigeria Football Association Act, CAP. N110, Law of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and enact the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Act.last_img read more

FIFA Club World Cup Exclusive on StarTimes

first_imgAs part of its commitment to broadcast sporting content to its growing number of subscribers, StarTimes is bringing the live coverage of the 2017 FIFA Club World Cup to the screen of football lovers.The 2017 FIFA Club World Cup commenced on December 6 and will run till 16 December at the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Seven clubs will play a total of eight matches in Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi and Al Ain’s Hazza Bin Zayed stadiums.The all-champions football tournament, currently in its 13th edition, is a FIFA organised international club football tournament between champion clubs from each of the six continental confederations, as well as the national league champion from the host country. The tournament will be hosted by Japan and beamed live on StarTimes sports channels including sports focus and world football. The Club World Cup UAE 2017 is featuring CAF champion, Wydad Casablanca from Morocco, Mexico’s Club World Cup veterans, Pachuca and New Zealand’s Auckland City.Club World Cup holders Real Madrid will have the chance to defend their global crown and be the first club to win two consecutive titles after winning the UEFA Champions League in June.According to the Brands and Marketing Director, StarTimes, Qasim Elegbede, “We are glad to offer the only world club tournament on an exclusive basis to our subscribers in Africa. We are very excited because this is a unique opportunity for football fans to see the best clubs from each continent, including Real Madrid, play one against another.”Elegbede further noted that, “The live telecast of these matches reflect the firm’s commitment to provide the best sporting action to its subscribers at a very affordable rate. Football lovers can also enjoy the thrills and action of these games on StarTimes World Football Channel 254 or 245, sports focus or live on the StarTimes mobile app available for download on the app store.”Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Edmond Ajoge:  We Must Bring Down the Cost of Running Tournaments

first_imgBy Stanley NkwazemaFor four years, Edmond Ajoge, through Tombim Sports Foundation has shouldered the sponsorship of an International Tennis Federation-sanctioned tournament in Abuja. Three seasons ago, Engineer Dayo Akindoju joined in the sponsorship before he was elected the President of Nigeria Tennis Federation also joining the train is Bayo Okusanya through GSL, now in its second edition. This brings three weeks of uninterrupted international tennis to the Federal Capital Territory.Interestingly, even as the last edition was concluded recently, it was yet a pipe dream for the Nigerian players as Brazilians won the Tombim and GSL tournaments and Sweden’s only entrant, Markus Eriksson, won the Dayak leg of the International Tennis. After following the editions and sharing the challenges faced by the sponsors, who indeed deserve commendations for the daunting task of bringing players aiming for the top level of the pro circuit, Ajoge told THISDAY that he feels happy impacting on tennis in Nigeria.Ajoge said: “God has given us the grace. We have done four editions. It has been very challenging. Everything, everywhere in the world is now a challenge coupled with the economic situation in Nigeria. It is a bit difficult but we are committed to it and by the grace of God we will see it through. “When we set out to do these four years ago, it was one of the things we had in mind. But like they say, man proposes and God disposes. That was part of our dream but we have not been able to do that because right now, achieving it in the near future is very tight for few reasons. One of them is the fact that we don’t have very good players in this country. It doesn’t have to do with only tennis, it is just the way our country is right now, and we are all in a mess in all facets of life in this country. So, sports are no exception and tennis in particular is just one of it.“You find kids, instead of them training to be somebody in life, all they are taking about is money. They have the wrong set of people as their mentors. That is the biggest problem we have in tennis today. The Nigeria Tennis Federation is working towards that and one of the things they are trying to do is to develop our players at the grassroots level; reason they had a tournament recently called ‘play your age’. The NTF President is pushing so hard to achieve the best in that regard and see to it that he can replicate it three or four times in a year.  If that can happen regularly, we will have the privilege to see our local players grow into better players and get to maybe the Semi-finals or the finals of the Tombim, Dayak and GSL Tournaments.“It’s quite unfortunate, the foreign players come here and they look forward to playing this tournament every year; they know they will come to Nigeria and pick the points and walk away. There is no resistance from any Nigerian player.”It is no longer news that a particular set of officials dominate the tournaments in Nigeria almost monopolising the officiating due to the fact that tennis enthusiasts doesn’t seem  interested in running the lines. Ajoge said: “It was a battle for us like three years. We were on it and finally last month, we were able to accomplish it. The way we function in Nigeria as a people, whatever we are used to doing, we do not want to change and I felt that we could do something to it. We have done it repeatedly for a few years and there is no difference and if you still continue to do it that way, of course, that is what is called madness.“You have tournaments in Lagos, Kano and other places and you are bringing people from Taraba to come and officiate in tournaments in Lagos. It doesn’t make any sense. If we can develop our data and equally develop a good number of officials everywhere in the country, then that makes life easier for us in this country. If you have a tournament in Abuja then the residents in Abuja will do it. My aim is to bring down the cost of running tournaments in this country as low as possible. When you do that, you will see many people coming in to assist with hosting as many tournaments as possible with little amount of money.“It is possible. But before now, the cost of running tournaments in Nigeria is up there; you to pay the officials, their transport, accommodation and all these raise the cost of tournaments. I can guarantee that if there is any tournament in Abuja and I am invited, I will commute from my house.According to Ajoge, one of the goals is to get Nigerian players rated by ITF and the ATP. “Unfortunately, we have not been able to achieve that because the players are not ready to sacrifice; most of them are not disciplined. The second part is to bring as many tournaments to the country as possible. We have been able to achieve that. We have three which runs for weeks here in Abuja. Hopefully, more people are joining us to run more tournaments. The other is also to bring down the cost and we are going to achieve that with every opportunity we have. We now have many volunteers ready to run around with each tournament which therefore encourages others to be part of the train.Raising Africa’s Hope of Digital Migration with Digital Technology The 2018 Digital Dialogue Conference facilitated by MultiChoice Africa, has raised hope among African countries that the current drive for nations to migrate from analogue to digital broadcasting, will reposition Africa in today’s digital era, writes Emma OkonjiM ultiChoice Africa, penultimate week, played a major role in the just concluded 2018 Digital Dialogue Conference, which held in Dubai, UAE, by facilitating it to further create a better understanding of the future direction of the video entertainment industry in Africa. Already in its fifth year, the conference was established in 2012 to create a better understanding of digital migration and its impact on Africa’s digital landscape. Since then, the independent and growing platform has been critical in fostering a better understanding and building knowledge on video entertainment and digital terrestrial markets while creating necessary conversations with thought leaders about various industry-related issues.African countries have been battling to conclude the process of digital migration, which is designed to phase out analogue television broadcasting and usher in digital broadcasting in the TV and entertainment industry. Nigeria is still in the process of completing the entire digital migration process, having covered some few cities where it has launched the Digital Switchover (DSO), as it is fondly called in Nigeria.Digital Migration in AfricaThe rapid advances in digital technology in Africa has created new opportunities to innovate on content delivery, however, while “the digital disruption has and will change how people consume digital products, as people who are invested and committed to the future of Africa, it is our collective responsibility to play an active role in making sure our continent benefits from this opportunity”. These insights were shared by the CEO of General Entertainment at MultiChoice, Yolisa Phahle, on the first day of the fifth edition of the Digital Dialogue.Speaking in front of a delegation comprising of several international industry thought-leaders and key media stakeholders from across the African continent, Phahle’s talk set the tone for the conference with its positive outlook into the future directions of video entertainment and how the industry is responding to the rapid change in technology when it comes to platforms of content delivery.Key InsightsAccording to Phahle, “If you speak to any of the people involved in the early days of MultiChoice, one of the things they remind me of is the absolute necessity to not just understand what the future holds but to shape the future, to be a disrupter and if necessary even to cannibalise yourself.” She said it was the need to be innovative that made Multichoice to launch GOtv in spite of the reach of DStv, adding that that was possible because the company was launched by people who were creating a media group not for the present, but one for the future.“We produce over 16 local content channels across the continent showcasing local storytellers and created the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards that celebrate African film making, we work with local broadcasters so that East Africans can see what is happening in West and Southern Africa. As a company, we are looking forward to investing even more in telling local stories, documenting our history and providing a platform for Africans to share African stories,” Phahle said.Speaking on MultiChoice vision for future digital content creation, Phahle said: “At MultiChoice, our vision is to be the best African story teller in the world, at the same time, we also promise to bring our customers the best international stories. Being able to tell the right story, at the right time to the right person is our absolute focus and if we are able to leverage the technology, and become obsessed with pleasing our customers, we will nullify the headwinds and use the tail winds to drive exponential growth for our collective future.”The Nollywood RevolutionThe CEO of Zuri24 Media Limited, Femi Odugbemi, who unpacked the Nollywood revolution to industry thought leaders at the conference, said: “If there has ever been an industry that created digital dialogue from the word go, it is Nollywood.” He reflected on Nollywood’s exponential growth since 1992 with the release of the classic ‘Living in Bondage’ and 2014 when it was declared a $3.3 billion sector by the Nigerian government.According to him, in 2016, Nollywood’s combined Box Office topped a staggering N3.5 billion ($11.5 million) and in 2017 Nollywood was named one of the priority sectors identified in the Economic Recovery and Growth plan of the Federal Government of Nigeria with a planned $1 billion in export revenue by 2020.MultiChoice said it was of the view that with the right digital content and enabling policies, Nigeria could be digitally ready to achieve digital migration.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Cavani’s Hat-trick for PSG Inflict More Misery on Thierry Henry

first_imgEdinson Cavani inflicted more misery on Monaco and their manager Thierry Henry last night with a hat-trick to send Paris St-Germain 13 points clear in Ligue 1.Henry’s struggling side were totally outclassed by the French champions as Cavani scored the first three goals.Neymar added the fourth from the penalty spot as Monaco suffered a second successive 4-0 defeat. Henry’s side have won just one league game all season and are second bottom – five points from safety.Cavani opened the scoring from PSG’s first meaningful attack – the Uruguay forward tapping home Neymar’s pass – before doubling the lead with another close-range finish.Both goals were awarded after a short delay while they were reviewed by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR).Former Napoli player Cavani completed his hat-trick after half-time before Neymar’s penalty – after Kylian Mbappe was fouled by Djibril Sidibe – completed the rout.It could have been worse for Monaco but Julian Draxler and Mbappe had efforts disallowed.Monaco, eliminated from the Champions League after they were thrashed by Club Brugge last week, face fellow strugglers Caen following the international break on 24 November.portsShare this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

U17 AFCON: Eaglets Top Group after Draw with Uganda

first_imgTwo-time champions Nigeria finished as winners of Group A of the ongoing Africa U17 Cup of Nations in Tanzania after forcing Uganda to a 1-1 draw at the Chamazi Stadium in Dar es Salaam Saturday.In a pattern that has stuck with them since the tournament began, the Golden Eaglets created a basketful of chances, wasting them one after the other, starting from Akinkunmi Amoo’s poor touch after a sweet team move in the 17th minute.In the 70th minute, Uganda drew first blood as the Nigeria defence ball-watched from a corner kick. Davis Ssekajja’s pull out only got a slight touch from Sunday Stephen, and substitute John Alou had the simplest task of nodding into an empty net. Two minutes later, with the goalkeeper to beat, Wisdom Ubani – who got a brace against Tanzania on the opening day but is yet to add to that despite his high work rate and activity – wasted another clear chance. But a minute later, Nigeria were level as Ibraheem Jabaar read a long pass from substitute Olakunle Olusegun quite well and pushed it beyond onrushing goalkeeper Komakech with the Ugandan defence in no man’s land.In Wednesday’s semi finals, the Golden Eaglets will play against the second –placed team in Group B, which would be sorted out today as leaders Cameroon confront Senegal and second –placed Guinea tackle Morocco.Angola join Nigeria in the semi finals from Group A, following their 4-2 defeat of Tanzania, as the host nation ended up losing all three group phase matches, conceding 12 goals.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Golden Eagletslast_img read more

African T’Tennis Club Championships Begin in Lagos

first_imgIn the draw conducted, men’s number one seed, ENPPI of Egypt has been drawn in Group A alongside Benin’s Unversite d’Abomey Calavi, Congo DRC’s APC Spin and Remo Stars of Nigeria.Group B has SOJ TT Club of Nigeria as well as Togo’s Club Avenir, Ethiopia’s Commercial Bank and Rwanda’s Vision TT.Women’s defending champion and Number One seed, Al Ahly of Egypt has been drawn in Group A with Nigeria’s G20 and Senegal’s Club International of Dakar.In Group B, Nigeria’s Cannan Queens are to compete with Congo DRC’s APC Spin and Ethiopia’s Commercial Bank.The top two teams from each group will advance to the semifinal stage of the competition starting today.The Club Championships is kick starting the table tennis festival in Lagos as the City of Excellence is playing host to three major tournaments on the ITTF calendar.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram The 2019 African Table Tennis Championships is scheduled to begin today at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Hall of Teslim Balogun Stadium in Lagos.The bi-annual tournament which was hosted in 2017 in Agadir, Morocco, has Egypt’s Al Ahly as the defending champions in the men and women events.For the first time, the number of teams increased to eight with Nigeria, Egypt, Togo, Senegal and Rwanda competing in the two events.last_img read more

NYSPHAA cancels fall sports state championships

first_img Tags: fall sportsNYSPHSAA If interscholastic sports are to take place in New York State this fall, they will do so on a delayed basis and without the lure of regional or state championships.At the recommendation of its COVID-19 Task Force, the New York State Public High School Athletic Association announced Thursday that it would not hold its slate of fall state championships in November.Also, NYSPHSAA decided to push back the start of fall sports until Sept. 21, four weeks after teams were scheduled to begin practices. And the possibility of further postponements remains on the table.“We recognize this is challenging for everyone,” said NYSPHSAA executive director Dr. Robert Zayas. “The decisions made at the state level are based upon data and statewide infection rates all in an effort to stop the spread of (COVID-19) and reopen responsibly”.As of now, interscholastic athletics remains prohibited across the state based on state Department of Health guidelines.A determination will be made in the first week of August if schools are to open on time the first full week of September, with Governor Andrew Cuomo saying schools can open if infection rates remain below 5 percent and the state’s regions remain in “Phase Four” of their reopening processes.NYSPHSAA’s COVID-19 Task Force met for the third time on Thursday after two meetings in June and after the State Department of Education released, earlier in the week, a 23-page guideline for schools looking to open after they were closed in mid-March.Aside from making the decision not to have state championships in the fall, NYSPHSAA also waived a seven-day practice rule for fall sports teams and, encouraged geographic scheduling for games and contests – if there is a fall season.If regional differences, school closings and pandemic outbreaks force further delays, NYSPHSAA is prepared to move most fall sports to a 10-week stretch from March 1 to May 8 in between the usual winter and spring seasons.Football, soccer, cross country, field hockey, volleyball, girls swimming and Unified bowling would all make this move, with girls tennis moved to later in the spring.As for the winter season, NYSPHSAA’s condensed schedule would have it begin Jan. 4 and end March 13, including basketball, ice hockey, indoor track, wrestling, bowling, gymnastics, skiing and competitive cheer.Then the third 10-week slate which would run April 5 to June 12 would include lacrosse, baseball, softball, outdoor track, tennis and golf.“We will continue to follow state guidance and work collectively with state officials to ensure high school athletics will start responsibly in the future,” said Zayas. “We must be willing to be flexible and continue to explore all options with student safety as our main focus.”Any of these plans, said Zayas, remain subject to further changes, depending on what state officials decide in the weeks ahead. And those changes could include having non-contact sports (such as baseball, softball and golf) in the fall while still moving football and soccer to early 2021.One certainty is that NYSPHSAA’s COVID-19 Task Force will meet again to discuss further options once state guidelines are updated.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story last_img read more