Alternative World Football Cup shock as team storms out

first_img0Shares0000The CONIFA World Football Cup in London has attracted teams from around the world © AFP/File / BEN STANSALLLONDON, United Kingdom, Jun 7 – The CONIFA World Football Cup for soccer’s outsiders wrestled with controversy ahead of Thursday’s semi-finals, as a team dramatically stormed out in furious protest.The high-flying Isle of Man pulled out after defeat to an unfancied side — orchestrated by a player who was quietly registered after the tournament deadline, in a bending of the rules. The furore erupted as the biennial competition for associations outside world football governing body FIFA, including unrecognised states and ethnic groups, neared its climax in London.Ellan Vannin — the Isle of Man’s name in Manx Gaelic — had been among the cup favourites and won their first two group games.However, after a shock 2-0 defeat to south Somali exile side Barawa, they missed out on qualifying for the quarter-finals on goal difference.Claiming a lack of available players after their opening match, Barawa had been allowed to bring Mohamed Bettamer into their squad — though volunteer-run CONIFA did not inform other teams of their decision.Ellan Vannin walked out before its next match against Tibet © AFP / BEN STANSALLThe London-born Libyan under-20 international has played in the African Champions League with Al-Ahli Benghazi.Bettamer scored in Barawa’s 2-1 defeat to North American side Cascadia in match two then scored one goal and created the other in Barawa’s surprise win over Ellan Vannin.The Manx team launched an appeal, calling for Barawa’s results against Cascadia and Ellan Vannin to be changed to 3-0 defeats.However, the appeal was rejected by the cup’s management committee, made up of tournament organisers and representatives of the 16 competing teams.– ‘Dreams destroyed’ –“CONIFA, despite their promotion of morals and integrity, are absolutely no better than other football governing bodies and have turned into a dictatorship,” the Manx International Football Alliance (MIFA) body said in an angry statement.“CONIFA, you have destroyed the dreams of 22 young amateur Manx players, you have belittled a proud nation for the sake of your own objectives. Shame on you.”MIFA called on the tournament’s sponsors, teams and match officials to “support morals and ethics and boycott the completion of this tournament”.All eight sides eliminated at the group stage were due to play three further placement round matches but Ellan Vannin walked out before facing Tibet.The Chagos Islands have been scrambled to stand in for them.Some on social media accused Ellan Vannin of sour grapes and questioned whether they would have complained had they made the quarter-finals.“At the heart of it, they thought they could win the competition and were maybe amongst the favourites,” Paul Watson, one of the tournament organisers, told AFP.“I think they were quite shocked to suddenly be eliminated. There were recriminations. I feel for them but I am disappointed that they didn’t stay the course.”– Semi-final showdown –On the pitch, Northern Cyprus are due to play northern Italy side Padania in the first of Thursday’s semi-finals at Carshalton in south London.Karpatalja face Szekely Land in the other in a clash of two ethnic Hungarian teams from beyond Hungary’s modern-day borders.“It will be an interesting game because they are like brothers for us. But we will give 100 percent,” Karpatalja midfielder Alex Svedjuk told AFP.“We hoped that we could only play each other in the final but we can’t do anything about it. We shall beat them!” said Svedjuk, who plays for Bekescsaba in the Hungarian second division.Padania are the odds-on favourites to win the tournament at 4/5, followed by Karpatalja at 11/4, Szekely Land at 3/1 then Northern Cyprus at 7/2.Reigning 2016 champions Abkhazia were knocked out in the group stage.The tournament has thrown up colourful scenes, including Italian soprano Cristina Sferrazza singing Padania’s “Va, Pensiero” anthem, the near-continuous singing and dancing of Matabeleland’s fans and 300 flare-firing Hungarian ultras suddenly turning up to support Szekely Land.CONIFA’s Watson said: “For a lot of these teams, this is even more important than a FIFA World Cup in that even to have got here is a miracle.”James Riley, who spent 11 seasons in Major League Soccer, winning the US Open Cup five times, captained North American bio-region Cascadia in the side’s first-ever matches.“It’s an experience that I’ll treasure for a lifetime,” he told AFP.“It’s what the beautiful game’s all about: to be able to experience different brands of football, what it means to different regions and groups.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more


first_imgCome the final whistle after today’s All Ireland quarter final, the respective Walsh households will be a difficult place to live for certain members of the family. Donegal women Roisin and Caroline Walsh just happen to be married to Kerry brothers Justin and Diarmuid Walsh.But they have refused to follow the Kingdom and will be proudly wearing the green and gold of Tir Chonaill today.Justin and Caroline (nee Sweeney) both work in Letterkenny IT while his brother Diarmuid and wife Roisin are both teachers in Inishowen.Both families have just returned from holidaying in the Kingdom but will be travelling to Croke Park today to support their teams. While in Kerry, Caroline, who is on the Committee for Relay for Life Donegal, met up with the Chair and Vice Chair of the Donegal Association of Kerry, who are keen to offer their support for Relay for Life by promoting and selling the Daniel O’Donnell’s CD (I’ll see this journey through) on the committees behalf and are also putting plans in place to organise a fundraising event for Relay for Life Donegal 2013.The Association was founded in March 2011 by Sean Gallagher.Living in Killorglin with his wife Mary, the Inver native is having great sport with the people of Kerry. With over 100 members the Donegal Association of Kerry is enjoying the tribal banter in all corners of the county this week as today’s showdown looms.“I think it is any team’s game and it is going to be tight. We are a farly tight-knit community here in Kerry alright, we’d have to be in a week like this, but the craic is mighty,” said Sean.Included in the picture are Sean Gallagher (back row – second in from right hand side), Kieran Boyle (back row on left hand side), Bridget Moore (formerly McElhinney, Creeslough) with her husband John from Causeway, Co Kerry. Bridget’s nephew, Martin McElhinney is on the Donegal panel for Sunday which makes it all the more exciting but although John would love to see Martin getting a medal, he will definitely be cheering for Kerry on the day! Also included of course are The Walsh families – Justin and Caroline with kids Sarah and Darragh (wearing Kerry Jerseys!!) and Diarmuid and Roisin with kids, Donal, Aoife and Michael (wearing Donegal Jerseys).    FAMILY VALUES – WHY DONEGAL’S KERRYMEN MAY BE SLEEPING IN THE SPARE ROOM! was last modified: August 5th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Photo library: Tourism and leisure 8

first_img{loadposition tc}Click on a thumbnail for a low-resolution image, or right-click on the link below it to download a high-resolution copy of the image.» Download Tourism & Leisure contact sheet (1.1MB) » Download full image library contact sheet (10.5MB) Cape Town, Western Cape province: Luxury apartments look onto the marina at the V & A Waterfront, a mixed-use shopping, hotel, business and residential development set in a working harbour.Photo: Rodger » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Capeprovince: The cable car up Table Mountain.Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: Hout Bay. Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: The lighthouse at Cape Point. Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: The Victoria and Albert Waterfront is a shopping and entertainment complex set in a working harbour. Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: A view of Table Mountain from the ferry to Robben Island. Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: A guard tower on Robben Island, once an infamous jail for political prisoners, most notably Nelson Mandela.Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: The manor house at Groot Constantia, one of the oldest wine farms in the Cape winelands. Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image Cape Town, Western Cape province: The manor house at Groot Constantia, one of the oldest wine farms in the Cape winelands. Photo: Mary Alexander, » Download high-res image TOURISM AND LEISURE 8:{loadposition tourism}Having trouble downloading high-resolution images? Queries about the image library? Email Janine Erasmus at [email protected]last_img read more

‘Frustrated’ Wozniacki says opponent got ‘lucky’ in Roland Garros win

first_imgDenmark’s Caroline Wozniacki reacts as she plays against Russia’s Veronika Kudermetova during their women’s singles first round match on day two of The Roland Garros 2019 French Open tennis tournament in Paris on May 27, 2019. (Photo by Thomas SAMSON / AFP)Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki was left “frustrated” after collapsing to a 0-6, 6-3, 6-3 loss to Russian world number 68 Veronika Kudermetova in the French Open first round on Monday and told her opponent she “got lucky”.The Danish 13th seed had retired injured from her two previous matches in the lead-up to Roland Garros, but looked to have found form in a one-sided opening set.ADVERTISEMENT Last year’s Australian Open champion lost her way in the second set, though, making 10 unforced errors, but said her opponent was fortunate to turn the match around.“I think she got very lucky at the start of the second set and took advantage of the opportunities she got,” said Wozniacki.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“I ran out of steam in the end and made some unforced errors that I don’t usually do, so that was very frustrating.“She had a few net chords and good shots on some of the important points at the start of the second set. For Wozniacki now, her focus will turn to the grass-court season, in which she has struggled in the past — never having reached the Wimbledon quarter-finals.“I haven’t had the best lead-up to this tournament,” she said.“I had a calf injury so haven’t really been able to play or practise for a couple of weeks.“My calf now feels good so that’s a positive so I’m definitely going to go back and work hard and get ready for the grass season.”It was the first time Wozniacki had lost in the opening round of a Grand Slam tournament since Wimbledon three years ago.“I just have to try and stay positive, and obviously it’s not as easy to stay positive when things aren’t going your way,” she added.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Catholic schools seek legislated pay hike, too “It’s definitely frustrating. You want to win, you work hard and you want to see results.“It hasn’t been a great year for me so far, so I’m going to work hard and try and turn it around.”The 22-year-old Kudermetova cruised to victory in the decider on a sparsely-populated Court Philippe Chatrier to claim the biggest win of her career.She will face either Kazakhstan’s Zarina Diyas or French wildcard Audrey Albie in the second round, having only made her main-draw debut at a Grand Slam event with a first-round Australian Open loss in January.“I was a little bit nervous at the start of the match, but I took it game by game and tried to be more aggressive,” said the Russian.ADVERTISEMENT PDEA chief backs Robredo in revealing ‘discoveries’ on drug war Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting PBA D-League: San Sebastian books semis seat, outlasts Che’lu in OTcenter_img ‘Rebel attack’ no cause for concern-PNP, AFP MOST READ View comments Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:40Trending Articles01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Two-day strike in Bicol fails to cripple transport LATEST STORIES Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venuelast_img read more