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Barty, Dellacqua through to US Open final

May 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Barty, Dellacqua through to US Open final)

Australia pair Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua have won through to the final of the US Open women’s doubles with a 6-2 6-2 defeat of India’s Sania Mirza and China’s Jie Zheng.

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The eighth seeded Australians dominated most of the semi-final and will now play the winner of the other semi-final between the unseeded Williams sisters Serena and Venus and fifth-seeded Czech duo Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka.

Earlier, Bob and Mike Bryan’s hopes of becoming the first men’s doubles team since 1951 to claim a calendar year grand slam were shattered on Thursday at the US Open by India’s Leander Paes and Czech Radek Stepanek.

The fourth seeds downed the top-seeded Americans 3-6 6-3 6-4 in the semi-finals, ending the US brothers’ hopes of sweeping the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open in the same year.

The only men’s doubles duo to complete a calendar year grand slam remains the Australian pairing of Ken McGregor and Frank Sedgman in 1951.

“Realistically it will probably never happen,” said Mike Bryan as he reflected on a chance for history gone begging.

“The margins are just so fine in doubles. There are just too many great teams out there and too much can go wrong, and a lot has to go right to be in that position. So we gave it everything we had.”

Paes, 40, and 34-year-old Stepanek, who won the 2012 Australian Open, will face second-seeded Austrian Alexander Peya and Brazil’s Bruno Soares in Sunday’s final.

“I have great respect for the Bryan boys. They are great ambassadors for US tennis,” said Paes, the winner of seven men’s doubles titles at the majors.

“But I have a great partner in Radek. He had spinal surgery this year and has fought his way back after a tough year. So when we play together we feel anything is possible.”

Stepanek, who was out for four months to recover from surgery, said he and Paes may develop a new celebration style in the final after showing off a well-synchronised ‘crab dance’ on Arthur Ashe Stadium on Thursday.

“It just felt natural to do it as we have a lot of fun on court. Maybe we will have something in the final,” he said.

The Bryans, who were defending champions, had already become the first pair to hold all four majors at the same time when they captured a third Wimbledon title in July.

They also won the London Olympics in 2012.

Bob Bryan admitted that they can still take consolation from their record of having all four majors at the same time.

“The media and everything shifted towards the calendar year Grand Slam. So it’s a never ending run of history and records, and there is always something on the horizon,” he said.

“What makes this sport so fun is there’s always the next goal. We’ll figure out what we’re going to focus on next, but we did give each other a hug and said, Great run.”

Canadian family goes Luddite

May 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Canadian family goes Luddite)

A Canadian family is going viral with a novel idea.

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It has banned all technology that was made after 1986 as a way to get their young children to play outside more.

Blair McMillan, 27, and girlfriend Morgan, 27, and their children Trey, 2, and Denton, 5, are planning to live like it’s 1986 for at least a year.

“No cell phones, no computers, no internet. I basically wanted to mould it around my household when I was growing up,” McMillan told The Morning Edition on Thursday. “I used to live outside, playing outside, and I realised how different my kids are.”

The family’s experiment has been widely reported in the Canadian and US press, with many readers applauding their efforts.

“Good for them and their kids. It takes initiative and courage to do what they’re doing,” said a commenter on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation website.

According to the Toronto Sun, Blair hit upon the idea when the children could not tear themselves away from their parents’ iPhones and iPads long enough to kick a ball around in the garden.

The new rule means their home is now without internet, GPS devices and smartphones, and no digital cameras or cable television.

To listen to music, they rummage through a pile of cassettes. If they need information, they consult a set of encyclopedia donated by a bemused neighbour. If MacMillan needs to find his way, he consults a paper map.

The 1986 date was the year both the parents were born and reflects a longing for the more traditional childhood they enjoyed.

“We’re parenting our kids the same way we were parented, for a year, just to see what it’s like,” said Blair, who even sports a strange 1980s haircut.

The parents did feel anxiety about closing their Facebook accounts, and Blair even says he felt a phantom mobile phone buzzing in his pocket for a few days, but now they feel it has brought the family together.

“We’re just closer – there’s more talking,” he said.

Davenport heads list of Hall of Fame nominations

May 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Davenport heads list of Hall of Fame nominations)

The 37-year-old Davenport produced 55 singles titles and a 753-194 record over a 17-year career that included grand slam titles at the 1998 U.

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S. Open, 1999 Wimbledon, and 2000 Australian Open.

She also won a gold medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and had a 33-3 record in Fed Cup competition for the United States.

Frenchwoman Pierce, known for her hard-hitting game, won 18 singles titles while compiling a 511-237 record that included triumphs at the 1995 Australian Open and 2000 French Open.

She was also on France’s Fed Cup team for 10 years, playing an important role in helping the nation win their two titles in 1997 and 2003. She was also a member of the French Olympic Team in 1992, 1996, and 2004.

Martinez, 41, had 33 singles titles during her career, none bigger than her win over Martina Navratilova in the 1994 singles final at the All England Club to become the only Spanish woman to ever win the title.

Also nominated in the recent player category is Dutchwoman Chantal Vandierendonck, 48, who became the first ITF World Champion for wheelchair tennis in 1991.

Nominated in the contributor category for their work toward the growth and development of the sport are: tennis coach Nick Bollettieri, who has guided 10 players to world No. 1 status; Jane Brown Grimes, who has held executive leadership roles with the WTA, USTA, and the International Tennis Hall of Fame; and British tennis broadcaster and author John Barrett.

The Hall of Fame’s 2014 class will be announced early next year and an induction ceremony will be held on July 12.

Located in Newport, Rhode Island, the International Tennis Hall of Fame has inducted 235 people representing 20 countries since 1955.

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Steve Keating)

Leak shows spy agencies break encryption

April 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Leak shows spy agencies break encryption)

US and British intelligence agencies have cracked the encryption that secures a wide range of online communications – including emails, banking transactions and phone conversations, according to newly leaked documents.

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The documents provided by former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden to The New York Times, ProPublica and The Guardian suggest that the spy agencies are able to decipher data even with the supposedly secure encryption designed to make it private.

The US National Security Agency, working with its British counterpart, GCHQ, accomplished the feat by using supercomputers, court orders, and some cooperation from technology companies, the documents indicate.

The Guardian report said the two spy agencies had “covert partnerships” with technology companies and internet providers which allows the insertion of “secret vulnerabilities – known as backdoors or trapdoors – into commercial encryption software.”

The British paper said the NSA spends $US250 million ($A275 million) a year on a program which works with technology companies to “covertly influence” their product designs.

The reports did not indicate which companies cooperated with the spy agencies, but they suggested that Britain’s intelligence agency was able to gain access to people’s Hotmail, Google, Yahoo and Facebook accounts.

If the reports are accurate, the highly secretive program would defeat much of the protection that is used to keep data secure and private on the internet, from emails to chats to communications using smartphones.

Joseph Hall of the Centre for Democracy and Technology, a digital rights organisation, called the latest reports “shocking”.

If the reports are true, “it means that the elements that keep information secure in transit are fundamentally undermined”, Hall told AFP.

Bruce Schneier, a cryptographic specialist who follows national security issues, described the revelations as “explosive”.

“Basically, the NSA is able to decrypt most of the internet. They’re doing it primarily by cheating, not by mathematics,” Schneier wrote on his blog.

Construction activity still declining

April 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Construction activity still declining)

Australia’s construction industry continues to struggle despite low interest rates, with activity in the sector falling for the 39th consecutive month.

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The Australian Industry Group/Housing Industry Association Australian Performance of Construction Index (PCI) fell 0.4 points to 43.7 in August.

An index reading below 50 indicates activity in the sector is falling and the lower the reading, the greater the speed of the decline.

Although the construction industry is still weak, there are signs of a gradual improvement in business conditions, Ai Group director of public policy Peter Burn said.

“On the positive side, the house building sector remains close to the point of stabilisation, with lower interest rates starting to provide some support to levels of activity and new orders within the sector,” he said.

“However, clearly we need to see much stronger conditions to offset the slack resulting from the winding down in mining related projects and the distinct weakness that persists in commercial and apartment building activity.”

Housing Industry Association chief economist Harley Dale said a recovery in the construction sector is still a long way off “even though super-low interest rates are providing some welcome assistance.”

“Against the backdrop of tight credit conditions for residential and commercial projects and an insufficient focus on policy reform, the necessary goal of achieving healthy levels of non-mining related construction activity will remain elusive,” he said.

Across the sectors of the construction industry, house building activity declined at a broadly unchanged rate, with the its index at 49.0 points.

Commercial construction recorded a slower pace of contraction with an index level of 39.1 points.

Declines in apartment building construction and engineering construction were steeper in August.

Serena, Azarenka one step from title rematch

April 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Serena, Azarenka one step from title rematch)

Williams, the top-seeded defending champion, will look to extend a dominant run through the women’s draw against fifth-seeded Li Na of China, who became the first Chinese to reach the last four at the U.

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S. Open.

Second seed Azarenka will face Italy’s unseeded Flavia Pennetta, whose brilliant run at Flushing Meadows has carried her to her first grand slam semi-final.

Should form prevail, Williams and Azarenka would set up the first repeat final at the U.S. Open since Serena Williams played her sister Venus Williams for the prize in 2002.

Azarenka, 24, joined the trio of 31 year olds with a last-eight victory over 30-year-old Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia in a women’s draw that has underlined the fitness and ferocity of the old guard.

Should they lift the trophy on Sunday, Williams, Li or Pennetta would become the oldest U.S. Open women’s winner since tennis turned professional in 1968, supplanting Australian Margaret Court, who was 31 years and 55 days old when she triumphed in 1973.

Williams has been on fire, losing only 13 games and spent the least time on court although she has done double duty playing with sister Venus in the women’s doubles.

The American aced her quarter-finals test against Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro by delivering a 6-0 6-0 double bagel win.

Williams later offered a shuddering thought.

“I like to believe there is always room for improvement,” she said.

Against former French Open winner Li, current French Open champion Williams holds an 8-1 advantage in head-to-head meetings, but has had some hard battles along the way. She won their last encounter in Cincinnati 7-5 7-5 in the semis.

Williams holds the Chinese player in high regard.

“She’s a great challenge,” Williams said. “She moves really well. She does everything well.

“We’ve always played really close. Maybe next time we play she might want to go from close to a win.”

Li has been on a revenge tour, beating Briton Laura Robson to avenge a 2012 U.S. Open loss, and Serb Jelena Jankovic, who had enjoyed a four-match winning streak against her.

“It’s a good challenge to play against her, because I think we always have tough match, even in Cincinnati,” said Li.

“There are only four players at end of the tournament, so nothing you can worry about. Just play the tennis. Just enjoy the time.”

Azarenka and Pennetta have split their two previous matches, missing a crack at a rubber match when the Belarusian withdrew from their second-round Wimbledon contest this year because of a knee injury.

Pennetta, like Williams, has not dropped a set during her U.S. Open run and is back to playing at her best level after having her 2012 season curtailed by a wrist injury that kept her out of the U.S. Open and required surgery.

“I’m confident because I’m here,” said Pennetta, who ousted fourth-seeded compatriot Sara Errani, former champion Svetlana Kunznetsova and red-hot Simona Halep along the way.

“I really don’t feel this pressure. In Italy we already have one champion in grand slam,” she said, referring to 2010 French Open winner Francesca Schiavone.

“I really don’t feel this pressure right now.”

Azarenka, who overcame former number one Ana Ivanovic 4-6 6-3 6-4 in the fourth round, said she would not underestimate the Italian despite her ranking of 83.

“Flavia is such an amazing person,” said Azarenka. “To see her go through the injuries and coming up with the best results she has right now, it’s really amazing.

“She’s a very good player, an all-around player. She can do anything. She has great touch, great variety. She can create power, create spin. She’s also very experienced and has been in the top 10.

“Her ranking doesn’t matter. It’s about the moment right now, and she’s playing terrific tennis.”

(Editing by Frank Pingue)

Warning over pregnancy lead levels

April 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Warning over pregnancy lead levels)

Women should stay healthy during pregnancy to keep children’s lead levels low, new research suggests.

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The findings from the Children of the 90s study at the University of Bristol shows that mothers who drank alcohol and coffee, smoked and had a coal fire in their home during pregnancy were likely to have higher levels of lead in their blood than women who did not.

Lead is a toxin that can cause high blood pressure in pregnancy, which in turn can predispose women to pre-eclampsia during pregnancy and heart disease later in life.

It accumulates in the bones and can remain for up to 30 years, the researchers said.

It can also have a longer-term detrimental effect on the child’s health, academic performance and behaviour.

Lead is widespread in the environment, particularly in areas with smelters, lead works, and battery manufacturing and recycling. Other sources of exposure include food, water, dust and soil.

There are no recommendations for blood lead levels in pregnancy and childhood in the UK but the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention in the US recommend levels are kept below 5 micrograms per decilitre.

The Children of the 90s study is a long-term health research project which involves more than 14,000 mothers who were pregnant in 1991 and 1992.

Academics have followed the health and development of the women and their children in detail ever since.

This study looked at 4,285 mother-child pairs in the Children of the 90s study and found that women with blood lead levels above 5 micrograms per decilitre were more likely to have attended university, and to smoke and consume alcohol and coffee.

The researchers say the unexpected finding that higher educational levels were associated with higher lead levels supports recent evidence that it should not be assumed that more disadvantaged populations have higher exposure to environmental pollutants.

Although the analysis was conducted on data gathered in 1991, it is the largest study of blood lead levels undertaken in the UK.

Dr Caroline Taylor, the lead author, said: “Pregnant women should not be concerned by this new report.

“Our research reinforces the current advice to women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy that they should stop or reduce their alcohol and caffeine intake and give up smoking if they can.

“They should follow a healthy diet with good sources of calcium and iron.”

The findings are published in the academic journal PLOS One.

We’ll have deadly power in Senate: Katter

April 14th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on We’ll have deadly power in Senate: Katter)

Federal MP Bob Katter is confident his party will join forces with two senators to hold the balance of power in the Senate after the election.

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Mr Katter says independent Senator Nick Xenophon, Democratic Labour Party Senator John Madigan and Katter’s Australia Party (KAP) Senate hopeful country music singer James Blundell will be a powerful trio.

“Nick, John and I are often referred to as the three amigos because we vote the same way on almost everything,” he told AAP on Thursday.

“I’m hopeful that group will have the balance of power in the Senate.”

A party spokesman told AAP they’re hopeful of winning four Queensland seats and two Senate spots.

However, polls and political analysts say Mr Katter will retain his north Queensland seat of Kennedy and Mr Blundell may win a Senate spot at best.

Mr Katter predicts the Liberal National Party (LNP) will have a comfortable majority in the lower house.

“But they won’t in the Senate,” he said.

“Which means to get legislation through they’ll have to accept amendments and that’s where we’ll have deadly power.”

Mr Katter has been holding so-called “camp fire get-togethers” with supporters across his electorate that include a rendition of Way out West from Mr Blundell.

His key messages have centred around boosting industries such as agriculture and mining to create more jobs for Australians.

The 20-year veteran of parliament describes all his earlier election campaigns as “a fantastic elongated pub crawl with the trauma of an election at the end of it”.

He says this year has been different because he’s now the leader of a party and he’s had to travel all over Australia.

Political analyst Paul Williams, from Griffith University, says the party’s campaign has lacked focus.

“Bob Katter seems to be popping up in places without any co-ordinated strategy and KAP doesn’t have a single message,” he said.

Mr Katter says LNP ads saying a vote for KAP is a vote for Labor has seriously hurt his campaign.

“How can a vote for me be a vote for the Labor Party?” he said.

“But a vote for us in the Senate, well yes we’ve done a deal (with Labor in Queensland).”

Uncapped pair named by Black Caps

March 15th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Uncapped pair named by Black Caps)

Uncapped pair Ish Sodhi and Corey Anderson have been included in the New Zealand Test squad to tour Bangladesh next month.

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Legspinner Sodhi and allrounder Anderson replace injured pair Martin Guptill and Tim Southee from the squad who lost both Tests heavily away to England in May.

Batsman Guptill broke a finger while playing in the Caribbean Twenty20 competition last month while Southee is still recovering from ankle surgery in July.

Southee may yet join the tour for the three one-day internationals and Twenty20 match against Bangladesh which follows Tests in Chittagong starting on October 9 and in Dhaka on October 21.

The tour begins with a three-day warmup match in Chittagong on October 4.

New Zealand Cricket (NZC) also revealed details of a short tour of Sri Lanka from November 10-21, which features three ODIs and two T20s.

Coach Mike Hesson says Sodhi, 20, and Anderson, 22, have been rewarded for their impressive form on the current NZ A tour of India.

“Corey gives the squad options as he can bat in the top six and provide useful seam bowling,” Hesson said.

“And having two specialist spinners (along with Bruce Martin) in the squad gives us the option to utilise wickets that are likely to turn.”

Left-hander Anderson became the youngest player to be awarded a NZC contract at age 16, six years ago.

He made his international debut in the Twenty20 series in South Africa late last year and played three limited overs matches against England in June.

A lively century this week for NZ A against India A was timely, Hesson said.

Born in Ludhiani, India, Sodhi showed promise at last year’s under-19 World Cup and enjoyed a consistent domestic campaign last summer with Northern Districts. He has taken 22 wickets in 11 first class games.

NZC’s new general manager national selection, Bruce Edgar, was satisfied with the squad, who will need to improve on their efforts in England.

“The key was to take a consistent approach to selection and provide continuity for the players,” Edgar said.

The Test group leave for a pre-tour camp in Sri Lanka on September 22.

The limited overs squad will be named next week.

New Zealand test squad:

Brendon McCullum (c), Peter Fulton, Hamish Rutherford, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Dean Brownlie, Tom Latham, BJ Watling, Corey Anderson, Bruce Martin, Doug Bracewell, Trent Boult, Neil Wagner, Mark Gillespie, Ish Sodhi.

Abbott imagines first morning as PM

March 15th, 2019 | Posted by admin in 上海性息 - (Comments Off on Abbott imagines first morning as PM)

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott is daring to imagine his first morning as prime minister.

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Mr Abbott told Melbourne radio station 3AW that victory was far from assured but that he still knows what his schedule will look like if he wins.

“If we win the election, I will probably go for an early morning bike ride with the guys I’ve been riding with for years for an hour or so,” Mr Abbott said on Friday.

“Then it will be basically into the office.”

Mr Abbott said that he wouldn’t hold daily media conferences as prime minister unless they were necessary and says he hopes to take politics off the front pages.

“It should be on the front page when significant things are happening but I don’t think we should be obsessive about politics,” Mr Abbott said.

Mr Abbott said, if elected, he would take advice from his staff, his cabinet and perhaps former coalition prime minister John Howard, whose morning exercise regime he would hope to emulate.

But he added that he isn’t taking anything for granted just yet.

“It’s like being in a grand final, five minutes to go, only a goal or two in it, anything could happen,” he said.

Mr Abbott did admit that his side was probably a goal or two in front.

“I think we are but we’ve got all these spectators running interference, you might say, these minor parties and independents trying to invade the pitch and muck up the way the game concludes,” he said.

Mr Abbott wouldn’t say whether he had prayed for victory on Saturday.

“He has his own plans,” he laughed.

“There are some things which we might have to leave shrouded in mystery.”