George Weah: from football icon to Liberia president

first_imgWenger signed Weah in 1988 when he was manager of Monaco, guiding his career for the next four years, and views the 1995 FIFA world player of the year as a shining example to the rest of the game.“I remember when I saw him for the first time in Monaco, coming in a bit lost, not knowing anybody, not being rated by anybody as a player and after, in 1995, becoming the best player in the world,” Wenger said in January.“Now he’s president of his country — it’s an unbelievable story. But it’s down to the fact that one thing that was common in George’s attitude is being strong mentally, absolutely unbelievably convinced that he has a mission.”– ‘All up to him’ –Younger voters have overwhelmingly favoured Weah, helping to propel him to power, but they are expecting quick results.“The expectation of the people and the country is all up to him (Weah). Everybody believes that if he fails us, the majority will be disappointed with politics,” said Samuel Harmon, 30, a street trader.Critics however accuse Weah’s Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) of having too vague a political platform, and have challenged his long absences from the senate since being elected in a 2014 race he won over Sirleaf’s son.Weah has also fended off barbs over his vice presidential pick, Jewel Howard-Taylor, the ex-wife of jailed former president and warlord Charles Taylor.Howard-Taylor is also a respected senator in her own right, and brought him important votes in the key county of Bong. Along with Sirleaf, she is one of few powerful women in Liberian public life.Weah is married to Clar Weah, and their son Timothy signed a professional football contract with Paris Saint-Germain in July 2017.Share on: WhatsApp (FILES) This file photograph taken on September 18, 2005, shows Liberian footballer George Weah as he takes part in a friendly football match in Monrovia.Former star footballer George Weah was named winner of Liberia’s presidential election on December 28, 2017, easily beating his challenger in the country’s first democratic transfer of power in seven decades scarred by civil wars, political assassinations and an Ebola crisis. / AFP PHOTO / Olivier Laban-MatteiMonrovia, Liberia | AFP | George Weah emerged from Liberia’s slums to become a superstar footballer in the 1990s, and has spent the last 13 years building political credibility to match his status as a sporting icon.Weah, 51, put education, job creation and infrastructure at the centre of his policy platform to beat outgoing Vice President Joseph Boakai to the presidency, and expectations are sky-high he will deliver for the country’s youthful population.“I am a human being, I strive to be excellent, and I can be successful,” Weah told journalists ahead of his inauguration, countering critics who say he is ill-prepared for office after serving in the Senate for just over three years.The first African player to win both FIFA’s World Player of the Year trophy and the Ballon d’Or, Weah was largely absent from Liberia during the 1989-2003 civil war period, playing for a string of top-flight European teams including Paris Saint-Germain and AC Milan, and later Chelsea.Weah becomes the 25th president of the west African nation, taking power from President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf after 12 years and completing its first democratic transition since 1944.“We love him, we just love him,” said mature student Moses Adams, as he watched Weah and his veterans’ team play a friendly game against the army ahead of his inauguration.“I expect big change. I expect our lives to be better. I expect prices of things to go down, and I expect schools to be given priority,” Adams said.Weah faces the challenges of a depressed export economy highly reliant on rubber and iron ore, and has pledged to make the country more self-sufficient by transforming the agriculture sector and providing vocational training.Sirleaf maintained a peace desperately needed after a war that killed a quarter of a million people, but extreme poverty remains the norm for most Liberians.– ‘He has a mission’ –A member of the Kru ethnic group, Weah was raised by his grandmother on a reclaimed swamp in one of the worst slums of the capital Monrovia.Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has likened Weah’s life to a film script, while the former striker has described Wenger as a “father figure” who stood by him as he faced racist attacks in Europe.last_img read more

Yorkshire and BB&O take first day honours

first_img29 Aug 2017 Yorkshire and BB&O take first day honours “Our middle order did very well today, they were very solid and I’m very happy with a win against Staffordshire. Now we’re looking forward to tomorrow.”  The northerners announced their intentions when they won all three morning foursomes before surging out with a confident singles performance.  Despite their youth however, they calculate they have the lowest handicap aggregate of all the teams at plus-1.8. “That’s testament to how good the boys are,” said Grimsey.  Yorkshire and BB&O – Berks, Bucks & Oxon – took the honours on the first day of the English Boys’ County Championship at Northamptonshire County Golf Club.  Yorkshire were on top form, beating Somerset 8-1, while BB&O had the upper hand all day as they played their way to a 5.5-3.5 win over Staffordshire.  But behind them the BB&O players were taking charge of their games, notably Harrison Arnold who romped to an 8/6 win. Fraser Bown (4/3) and Melan Dhaubhadel, pictured right, (5/4) secured the team’s win – but Staffordshire went on fighting in the other two games. Images copyright Leaderboard Photography Harry Fearn was two down after nine but went on to win his game 4/2, while James Wilkes staged a great fight back to take BB&O’s Taylor Paul to the 18th. Wilkes had been four down after seven but eventually stood on the 18th tee all square – however Paul refused to give way and they halved the last in par.   BB&O team manager Marc Grimsey had much praise for his young team, which includes a 14-year-old and two 15-year-olds.  For the rest though, Yorkshire was definitely in charge. Michael Hay led the way in the top match, winning three holes in a row to finish 3/2. The others followed rapidly with big wins from George Heath (7/5) and Charlie Daughtry, pictured top (6/4) and solid results from Jack Leversidge and Callum Macfie (both 4/3).  BB&O will meet Somerset tomorrow.  Tomorrow they’ll play Staffordshire and Robinson went on: “No doubt they’ll come out with a point to prove and want to beat Yorkshire and we have to make sure we are up to that challenge.”  Their play pleased coach Steve Robinson but he quickly said: “We are aware that one win doesn’t win the tournament, so we’ve just got to keep everyone on task and make sure that our standards and behaviour are the same every day.” Click here for full scores In the day’s other match, BB&O gave themselves an all-important advantage with their 2-1 lead after the foursomes. They lost the top singles when Staffordshire’s Jack Smith struck a blow for his team’s morale with his 4/2 win over England U16 international Conor Gough.  Only Somerset’s Huxley Howell was able to defy them, breaking clear of James Swash by winning the 11th 12th, 14th and 16th to take his point 4/2.  Tags: BB&O, Boy’s County Finals, Yorkshirelast_img read more

Former India hockey captain and real life protagonist of ‘Chak De! India’ files for…

first_imgImage Courtesy: Getty/Catch NewsAdvertisement 4xmaz3NBA Finals | Brooklyn Vsa9tWingsuit rodeo📽Sindre E76uh( IG: @_aubreyfisher @imraino ) hrq5Would you ever consider trying this?😱g8s7Can your students do this? 🌚0qo2uRoller skating! Powered by Firework Back in 2007, the Bollywood movie ‘Chak De! India’ was released, the blockbuster movie starring the iconic Shah Rukh Khan that helped the Indian audience rediscover their love for the national sport. The movie, which depicted the Indian women’s national field hockey team’s road to glory, was inspired from the life of Suraj Lata Devi, the former real-life captain national squad. Thirteen years later, the Manipuri legend is making the headlines again, after she charged her husband Ksh Shantakumar of domestic violence.Advertisement Image Courtesy: Getty/Catch NewsIn 2005, Suraj Lata tied the knots with Shantakumar, who is also a former hockey player from Manipur. However, she started facing physical assault and mental torture for a long time, but finally begun to file multiple domestic abuse cases against her better half since last year.At first, Suraj Lata decided not to make the news of the abuse public because of her two children. However, at a press conference on Wednesday, the former national captain finally came out and shared the violence she was facing from her husband.Advertisement Suraj Lata’s greatest achievement was winning gold medal at the 2002 Commonwealth Games, the event which inspired the movie. She subsequently clinched two more gold in the following years, at the 2003 Afro-Asian Games and then at the 2004 Hockey Asia Cup. However, she said that the medals were a subject of ridicule for Shantakumar.“My husband ridiculed me when I brought all the medals and photos that I had won on the day of my marriage and had remarked what use would it serve?”Advertisement Additionally, the Arjuna Award winner also said that her husband accused her for being  promiscuous and immoral for receiving the award.Despite deciding to keep her husband’s behaviour secrets at first, Suraj Lata finally made things public in 2019. “I never wanted the matter to become public. However, there is always a limit to someone’s patience and tolerance,” she added.Back in November, she filed her first police complaint against Shantakumar, after facing a traumatic abuse from him during a trip to Punjab, which resulted in Suraj Lata getting hospitalised.“I somehow managed to flee and reached Imphal on November 14. After getting myself treated at the JNIMS Hospital in Imphal,” she added.Following the unfortunate incident, Suraj Lata decided to file a domestic abuse complaint on 16th November in Imphal, and another one in January at the Heingang police station in Imphal East. However, as the incident took place in Kapurthala, Punjab, the police had asked her to file the case there.On 15th February, Suraj Lata filed a complain against her husband at the Sultanpur Lodhi police station in Kapurthala.Also read-Trailblazer Bala Devi talks about her ‘dream’ of playing in Europe and hopes more Indian women follow in her footsteps Advertisementlast_img read more