Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Repost From ANN (Asian News Network)

Experts pick Pacquiao to win against Mexican

Grapevine, Texas - He absorbed volumes of punches from both Manny Pacquiao and Antonio Margarito and weathered them all.

Though he lost to both, Ghanaian Joshua Clottey believes Pacquiao will emerge the winner when they fight for the World Boxing Council super welterweight crown on Saturday night (Sunday morning in Manila) at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Arlington City.

�I know it�s going to be a good fight, but I know for sure Pacman is going to win,� Clottey told the website Boxing News. "(It�s) not just because he beat me before but because he has more speed and he hits a bit harder than Margarito.�

Of the 25 boxing experts polled by Boxing News that included WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto and International Boxing Federation cruiserweight titlist Steve Cunningham, an overwhelming 23 picked Pacquiao to win, 10 by decision and nine by either knockout or stoppage.

Only two trainers picked Margarito, reflecting the betting trend that puts Pacquiao at minus 550 and Margarito at plus 350.

That means that a US$550 bet on Pacquiao will net just $100, while a $100 wager on Margarito will earn $350.


Trainer Freddie Roach has decided to turn Pacquiao�s penchant for getting hit deliberately while testing his rival�s strength into an opportunity to launch a counterattack against Margarito.

If Pacquiao does the rope-a-dope, which Muhammad Ali masterfully employed to tire out and clobber the then unbeaten George Foreman in Zaire on Oct 30, 1974, Roach said there�s enough justification for it.

�Instead of asking him to stay out of the ropes, I put him on the ropes and put up a plan to counter his (Margarito�s) attacks,� Roach said. �So if he goes to the ropes it�s for a reason this time.�

�I feel we can knock him out with a counter shot,� Roach added.

If Margarito doesn�t take the bait and stays outside, Roach said Pacquiao will pounce on him.

�When he (Margarito) steps out with his left foot, he�s going to throw a right uppercut, and when he goes the other way, he�s going to throw a left uppercut,� said Roach. �We know him well, we know his habits well and we�re ready to take advantage of all those habits.�

Although Margarito unleashed a computer box record of 1,675 punches when they tangled on December 2, 2006, Clottey isn�t convinced the Mexican three-time world champion beat him that time.

Clottey considers his loss to Pacquiao, who peppered him with 1,231 punches last March at the same venue, as his only legitimate setback out of four defeats in his resum�, which also includes 35 victories and one no-contest.

Fight �do-or-die�

The 34-year-old Clottey also believes that Margarito doesn�t possess the defensive skills to foil Pacquiao�s assault.

�Margarito doesn�t have a good defence, either,� Clottey said. �He�s going to fight like �do-or-die,' and as a result, he�ll get hit a lot.

�You have to understand how good Pacquiao is, and he has the power because he�s fought and beaten bigger guys. If Margarito can understand that, it will be a good fight, but if he goes in there thinking it�s do-or-die, I think he�ll lose and Pacquiao might stop him.�

Game plan

Roach said he�s not impressed with Margarito as a fighter based on his ring stance and manners.

�Fundamentally, I don�t rate him as a good fighter. Skills-wise, he�s a very good kid, a strong guy. But fundamentally, he crosses his feet.�

While Pacquiao has mastered the game plan and is 100-per cent ready, Roach said he let his prized ward do a light workout Thursday (Friday in Manila) just to loosen him up.

�Just going through the motions. He wants to work out a little bit, go four rounds in the mitts, finalise the game plan,� said Roach, who predicted that Margarito would be �an easy fight�.

On Wednesday, at a prefight press conference, Roach hinted the fight might be over quickly, saying: �Don�t be surprised if the fight ends in the first round.�

Roach noted that Pacquiao is 100 per cent better than when he was in Baguio City during the early part of their training in camp.

�He�s very good, very relaxed. I know he can beat this guy,� Roach said.

Boxing greatness

Pacquiao will be aiming to enhance his place among boxing�s elite.

�I don�t need to prove anything more in boxing,� Pacquiao told Reuters during the buildup to a bout scheduled for 12 rounds. �I have already achieved what I wanted in boxing.

�What I want right now is to maintain my greatness in boxing and to entertain people who can be satisfied by my performance.�

Pacquiao likes the look of his match-up with Margarito.

�This is the fight I have been waiting for,� the 31-year-old said. �I believe we can give a good fight on Saturday. Margarito is a very aggressive fighter and throws a lot of punches.�

Initially known for his lightning hand speed and lethal left hook, Pacquiao has become a genuine two-fisted fighter.

Reposted From ANN (Asian News Network)

Friday, November 12, 2010

A Repost From AFP

US cruise passengers recount 'vacation from hell'

The stranded Carnival Splendor cruise ship is towed into San Diego Harbor by tug boats. Relieved passengers from the stricken US cruise ship finally stepped back on dry land, voicing joy at the end of a four-day ordeal which one described as a "vacation from hell."

SAN DIEGO, California (AFP) - – Relieved passengers from a stricken US cruise ship finally stepped back on dry land, voicing joy at the end of a four-day ordeal which one described as a "vacation from hell."

The 3,299 mostly American passengers on board the luxury "Carnival Splendor," left adrift in the Pacific after an engine fire Monday, streamed off the ship in San Diego where it arrived after being towed by tugs for two days.

Some praised the way the 1,167 crew on board dealt with the crisis, but for many it was a nightmare as the vessel was left without hot water or hot food, while many of the toilets did not work for the first day of the emergency.

"It was putrid like a pit toilet," Greg Parish, 48, told AFP, saying it was his first and last cruise. "This is a vacation from hell... I think I'm pretty done with this cruise business."

"It was awful, it was sewage," added 41-year-old Maria Azila, on her fifth cruise to celebrate her mother's 75th birthday, describing the smell on the ship.

The 113,000-ton ship was on a seven-day Mexican Riviera cruise which started Sunday in Long Beach, California, but only made it some 200 miles (300 km) south of San Diego, off the Mexican coast, when the blaze erupted early Monday.

The vessel spent over a day adrift, before ocean-going tugs reached it Tuesday and began the two-day limp back to US soil which finally ended Thursday with emotional reunions with loved ones in San Diego.

Some passengers had praise for the hundreds of staff on board the liner, who helped organize activities ranging from card games to musical singalongs to while away the time.

"The crew did a great job," said Barbara Levant from British Columbia, describing how staff slept under the tables in the dining room because their quarters -- at the bottom of the ship -- were too hot without air conditioning.

They also formed human chains to carry food up several floors, since the elevators were not working.

For some, the worst moment was when the fire first broke out, waking passengers on Monday morning.

"We woke up at 6:00 am to the smell of smoke. I opened the hallway door and it was filled with smoke," said Parish, echoing other' accounts that passengers were only told there was smoke, not a full-blown engine fire.

"I felt like they were kind of leading us on and lying to us. They weren't telling us what was really happening. The whole area was filled with smoke and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see what is going on."

Passenger Marquis Horace voiced anger at being left in the dark -- literally.

"It was absolutely deplorable ...I felt like marooned on a prison ship, because I was in the dark and I had mayo (mayonnaise) sandwiches and backed-up toilets. It was just bad, it was really bad all the way round," he told CNN.

Azila said she was afraid of drug-runners or pirates boarding the ship while it was adrift, before the tugs and the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier came to the rescue.

"I was scared. I was afraid for the 32 hours we were there, for sure," she added, describing the moment the US Navy ship arrived, carrying some 4,500 pounds of groceries including bottled water, Spam and Pop Tarts.

"I thought, 'Oh my Gosh, we're going to be saved.' It was like the cavalry was coming," she said.

Meanwhile the US National Transportation Safety Board said it and the US Coast Guard would help investigate the cause of engine fire. The probe will be led by authorities in Panama, the country where the ship was flagged.

Whatever the cause, passengers will get a full refund, their travel expenses paid and will receive another cruise equal to the amount paid for their troubled trip, according to the vessel's owners, Carnival Cruise Lines.

The company's president and CEO, Gerry Cahill, said: "We wish to thank our guests for their patience and cooperation during this very difficult situation and offer our sincerest apologies."

As they stepped onto the dockside Thursday, one enterprising local was selling T-shirts emblazoned with "I survived the 2010 Carnival Cruise Spamcation" -- a reference to the cheap tinned meat delivered to the unlucky cruisers. There appeared to be few takers.

Reposted From AFP

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Repost From Ewen Boey

Japanese man streams his suicide ‘live’ online

By Ewen Boey – November 11th, 2010

A decision by a Japanese man to stream his suicide “live” online is creating a stir among netizens.

Police in the northern city of Sendai in Japan’s Miyagi prefecture found the 24-year-old’s body in his apartment on Tuesday morning after receiving reports from Internet users, reported Japanese daily Yomiuri Shimbun.

Investigators believe that at around 3.45am on Tuesday, the man attempted to hang himself on his balcony, apparently using knotted sheets, but the joist buckled under his weight.

The video then showed him finding a new spot and and repeating the attempted at 5.30am, at which point viewers could make out that his body had gone perfectly still.

UStream, an American website that allows users to post images or videos “live”, stopped the broadcast after 6am after a large number of viewers complained about the horrific images. The video was also uploaded to YouTube, but was removed soon after.

The man had been on an extended leave from work since August and the Sankei Shimbun newspaper reported that he worked for a banking institution and that he was facing problems at the office.

Last Sunday, on November 7, in his broadcast on Ustream, he talked about his life and discussed his plan to commit suicide on an online forum.

The broadcast drew a variety of responses, with some users instigating him to kill himself.

Some of the taunts on the forum read “Die now” and “Please die quickly”.

However, others encouraged him to keep on living. “Please live! Please live!” and “It’s OK, please don’t die”, read some of the comments.

His feed went dead on Monday, causing Internet users to question the credibility of his declarations.

However, on Tuesday around midnight, the channel came back online and the man went on to hang himself in his apartment, with the scene playing live.

Local police say no will has been found but they did reveal that a man had posted a message to them around 1.40am to inform them of his intention to kill himself.

The suicide rate in Japan is one of the highest in the world, accounting for more than 32,000 deaths last year, the 12th consecutive year to exceed 30,000.

Reposted From Ewen Boey

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Repost From AFP

'Twilight' filming sparks protests by Rio locals

Actors Taylor Lautner (L), Kristen Stewart (C) and Robert Pattinson arrive at the premiere of Summit Entertainment's "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" at Nokia Theatre LA on June 2010. Filming of the final installment of the "Twilight" vampires-and-werewolves movies in Rio de Janeiro has sparked protests by locals fed up with the inconvenience, media reported Monday.

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - – Filming of the final installment of the "Twilight" vampires-and-werewolves movies in Rio de Janeiro has sparked protests by locals fed up with the inconvenience, media reported Monday.

Some residents in the central Lapa district where scenes from "Twilight 4: Breaking Dawn" are being filmed set fire to a crew's portable toilet Sunday and demonstrated over not being able to easily access their homes.

Tough security measures were thrown up around the production after an incident in August, when cast and crew from the movie found themselves in a deadly shoot-out between criminals and police in the hotel where they were staying.

Filming of the finale of "Twilight," starring Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson, was estimated to inject around a million dollars into Rio's economy.

The movie is to be released in two parts, the first at the end of next year and the the second at the end of 2012.

Reposted From AFP

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Repost From Thea Alberto Of Yahoo! Southeast Asia

Aquino wishes Shalani luck on new show

By Thea Alberto – November 8th, 2010

By Thea Alberto
Yahoo! Southeast Asia

(UPDATE) They may have gone separate ways but President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III still wishes only the best for Shalani Soledad.

In an unusual twist of fate, Soledad will reportedly join Willie Revillame who endorsed Senator Manny Villar, one of Aquino’s staunchest rivals in the May 2010 elections.

When asked to react about reports that Soledad is joining Revillame’s TV5 show “Willing Willie,” Aquino, through deputy presidential spokesman Abigail Valte, has this to say: “Sana ang hakbang na ito ay magpalapit sa pagtamo ng kaganapan kung saan siya tunay na masaya [I hope this step will bring her closer to fulfillment where she will be truly happy].”

In a separate interview with reporters, Aquino said he is hoping that Soledad won’t experience the downsides of being in showbiz.

“We wish her really well. I understand she looks at it as a perspective to broaden her ability to serve her constituents. So sana yung upside will be fully attained, she finds fullfillness and happiness in it. ‘Yung downside naman in being in showbiz hopefully will be very mitigated or non existing,”

Will he watch his ex-girlfriend host the TV show? Maybe, Aquino said.

“It depends on how much material I will be given tonight to study,” he said.

Soledad’s decision to be a co-host surprised most of her followers because the low key Valenzuela Councilor rarely grants interviews and TV appearances.

Aquino and Soledad was an item for almost two years. Neither admitted about the supposed break-up but it was clear to the public they have called it quits.

Aquino, the country’s first bachelor President, is being linked to his stylist Liz Uy while Soledad already denied links with Valenzuela Mayor Win Gatchalian.

In her Twitter account, Soledad said she is “trying my best” to stay strong.

Reposted From Thea Alberto of Yahoo! Southeast Asia

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Repost From Reinir Padua of

Lotto pot to reach P353 million

MANILA, Philippines - The projected jackpot prize in the Grand Lotto draw tomorrow night is expected to reach at least P353 million – the biggest ever in the history of all the lotto games of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

The hundred-million peso jackpot prize in the PCSO’s newest game remains elusive and has yet to be bagged by a lucky bettor.

According to the PCSO, no one won the jackpot prize of P333,577,429.20 in last Saturday night’s draw.

It was because no bettor was able to correctly place the winning number combination of 15-38-17-39-11-03, said Liza Gabuyo, PCSO’s assistant general manager for online lottery.

“We estimate the jackpot prize for Monday night’s draw to be at P353 million,” Gabuyo said after last Saturday’s draw.

And the amount could even go higher depending on ticket sales, Gabuyo said.

According to the agency, more and more bettors place their combinations as jackpots get bigger in the lotto games.

Before the jackpot prize in Grand Lotto hit P353 million, the highest jackpot prize in the history of the PCSO’s lotto games was the P347 million in a Super Lotto draw in February 2009. The jackpot prize was shared by two winners.

Launched last April, the 6/55 Grand Lotto replaced the Power Lotto in the PCSO’s bid to address increased requests for medical assistance from indigent patients.

The PCSO’s newest game uses a single panel betting system just like previous lotto games and bettors can choose six numbers in any order from 1 to 55.

The Grand Lotto conducts draws three times a week on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. - By Reinir Padua (Philstar News Service,


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