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Bristol Bears launched ‘themed’ matchdays at the start of the 2018/19 campaign and, following a successful first season, our social media poll is BACK for every home game in BS3.Supporters can take part in our poll on twitter to vote for their preference and we’ll be dropping famous tunes from the chosen era throughout the day.
HONOLULU | A December surge propelled health care sign-ups through the government’s rehabilitated website past the 1 million mark, the Obama administration said Sunday, reflecting new vigor for the problem-plagued federal insurance market.Combined with numbers for state-run markets due in January, that should put total enrollment in the new private insurance plans under President Barack Obama’s health law at about 2 million people through the end of the year, independent experts said.That would be about two-thirds of the administration’s original goal of signing up 3.3 million by Dec. 31, a significant improvement given the technical problems that crippled the federal market during much of the fall. The overall goal remains to enroll 7 million people by March 31.“It looks like current enrollment is around 2 million despite all the issues,” said Dan Mendelson, CEO of Avalere Health, a market analysis firm. “It was a very impressive showing for December.”The administration said that of the more than 1.1 million people now enrolled in the federal insurance exchange, nearly 1 million signed up in December. The majority came days before a pre-Christmas deadline for coverage to start in January. Compare that with a paltry 27,000 in October, the federal website’s first, error-prone month.“We experienced a welcome surge in enrollment as millions of Americans seek access to affordable health care coverage,” Marilyn Tavenner, the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said in a blog post announcing the figures.The numbers don’t represent a full accounting for the country.The federal website serves 36 states. Yet to be reported are December results from the 14 states running their own sites. Overall, states have been signing up more people than the federal government. But most of that has come from high performers such as California, New York, Washington, Kentucky and Connecticut. Some states continue to struggle.Still, the end-of-year spike suggests that the federal insurance marketplace is starting to pull its weight. The windfall comes at a critical moment for Obama’s sweeping health care law, which becomes “real” for many Americans on Jan. 1 as coverage through the insurance exchanges and key patient protections kick in.The administration’s concern now shifts to keeping the momentum going for sign-ups, and heading off problems that could arise when people who’ve already enrolled try to use their new insurance.“They’ve got the front end of the system working really well,” said insurance industry consultant Robert Laszewski. “Now we can move on to the next question: Do people really want to buy this?” He also estimated 2 million will probably be enrolled this year.The fledgling insurance exchanges are online markets for subsidized private coverage. Obama needs millions of mostly younger, healthy Americans to sign up to keep costs low for everyone. Open enrollment runs until the end of March.Tavenner said fixes to the website, overhauled to address widespread technical problems, contributed to December’s figures. But things haven’t totally cleared up. Thousands of people wound up waiting on hold for telephone help on Christmas Eve for a multitude of reasons, including technical difficulties.“We have been a little bit behind the curve,” acknowledged Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, whose state has the highest proportion of uninsured residents.“Obamacare is a reality,” conceded one of the law’s opponents, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., who as House oversight committee chairman has been investigating the rollout problems. However, he predicted it will only pile on costs.“The fact that people well into the middle class are going to get subsidies is going to cause them to look at healthcare…sort of in a Third World way of do we get subsidies from the government for our milk, for our gasoline and, oh, by the way, for our healthcare,” said Issa.For consumers who successfully selected one of the new insurance plans by Dec. 24, coverage should start on New Year’s Day. That’s provided they pay their first month’s premium by the due date, extended until Jan. 10 in most cases.But insurers have complained that another set of technical problems, largely hidden from consumers, has resulted in the government passing along inaccurate data on enrollees. With a flood of signups that must be processed in just days, it remains unclear whether last-minute enrollees will encounter a seamless experience if they try to use their new benefits come Jan. 1.The White House says the error rate has been significantly reduced, but the political fallout from website woes could pale in comparison with the heat that Obama might take if Americans who signed up and paid their premiums arrive at the pharmacy or the emergency room and find there’s no record of their coverage.Officials are also working to prevent gaps in coverage for at least 4.7 million Americans whose individual policies were canceled this fall because they fell short of the law’s requirements. The administration has said that even if those individuals don’t sign up for new plans, they won’t face the law’s tax penalty for remaining uninsured.A few states offering their own updates have posted encouraging totals, including New York, where more than 200,000 have enrolled either through the state exchange or through Medicaid, a government program expanded under Obama’s health law to cover more people. In California, a tally released Friday showed nearly 430,000 have enrolled through the exchange so far.Castro and Issa spoke on NBC’s “Meet The Press.”___Alonso-Zaldivar reported from Washington. Reach Josh Lederman at https://twitter.com/joshledermanAP
Ben Woodward of Whitewater placed second Thursday at the Freeride Junior World Championships at Kappl, Austria.Woodward finished second to Dylan Lavenex of Switzerland with Abel Moga of Spain third in the men’s ski event.According to the FJWC website Woodward put together a textbook run, fluidly linking-up three critical airs, which included a stylish 360 and a big stomp to close out a solid performance. The FWT is the worldwide circuit of freeride snowboarding and skiing with the best riders in the world competing on the most legendary and challenging alpine faces and the most renowned ski resorts across the world.Woodward was one of four athletes representing Canada at the Freeride World Jr Championships this Thursday in Austria.
But Barrett pointed to Australia’s stunning recent fightback against Argentina — when they wiped out a 24-point half-time deficit to win 45-34 — as evidence the Wallabies have turned the corner after losing six of their eight previous Tests.“We always get a confident Australia, there’s no doubt about that,” the two-time world player of the year told reporters.“They’ve probably rediscovered that bit of belief that may have been missing. It was a great comeback, we acknowledge that — be we weren’t surprised to see them come back.“We can’t take for granted that we’re going to just keep winning,” added Barrett, who is set to win his 70th cap at the weekend.“There’s no secret recipe — we just have to keep working hard. We have high standards and we have to be accountable. It’s a serious business.”New Zealand slipped up last year after winning the first two Bledisloe Tests, a fact not lost on wing Rieko Ioane.All Black wing Rieko Ioane smiles as he talks to the media in Japan © AFP / Behrouz MEHRI“It’s a similar situation,” he said. “Last year was a huge learning curve for us, but they came out swinging harder and deserved their win.”New Zealand face the 2019 World Cup hosts Japan in Tokyo on November 3 before flying to Europe to complete their five-match tour against England, Ireland and Italy.– Room for improvement –But assistant coach Ian Foster refused to look beyond their trans-Tasman rivals.‘We can still get better’: All Blacks’ assistant head coach Ian Foster © AFP / Behrouz MEHRI“The (Bledisloe) trophy is already in the cabinet,” he said.“But it’s a typical Test against Australia and the beauty of this one is that it’s Test one of a tour, so it’s important we start well.“We really don’t want to have to rebound from a poor performance in game one.”Foster insisted the All Blacks would come out firing after beating Argentina twice in the Rugby Championship and splitting a brutal pair of games with South Africa after extending their 15-year stranglehold on the Bledisloe Cup.“I don’t think we’re ever pleased,” he said. “We’re a grumpy bunch in some ways, but overall we’re in an okay spot.“We’ve come off a pretty tough Rugby Championship, we got really challenged by South Africa and we can still get better and smoother in some areas.”Australia will also play November Tests away to Wales, Italy and England.Centre Samu Kerevi, who is set to make his return from a bicep injury, backed the Wallabies to push the World Cup holders all the way.Face off: All Blacks Nathan Harris (left) and Vaea Fifita square up during a training session in Tokyo on Tuesday © AFP / Toshifumi KITAMURA“You always want to play the best in the world and right now they are the best — period,” he said.“But for us it’s about making sure we’re prepared and have ticked off all the boxes to get the best outcome. The World Cup is not too far away, so hopefully it’s a rehearsal.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Guarding against an Aussie backlash: Beauden Barrett © AFP / Behrouz MEHRITOKYO, Japan, Oct 23 – New Zealand fly-half Beauden Barrett on Tuesday warned of an Australian backlash when the fierce rivals clash in the Bledisloe Cup in Japan this weekend.The All Blacks, who have won the last two Rugby World Cups, will be looking to complete a 3-0 whitewash in the annual series in Saturday’s Test in Yokohama.
“They’re good,” Crusaders coach Scott Robertson said Thursday after naming his team for Saturday’s season climax between two sides brimming with internationals.“We’re really impressed with their quality of play, their variation in their style of attack. They rank really highly in all the stats, defensively they’re second in the comp, they’ve got a lot of international experience. They’re on a roll.”But the Crusaders have homeground advantage and even more impressive statistics, being equal with the Jaguares on defence while leading the way for tries scored and clean breaks.Although the Jaguares have won their last seven games, coach Gonzalo Quesada downplayed talk of a history-making final victory and the relevance of statistics.“We are trying to keep the team a little bit away from that picture of what’s happening concerning that history thing,” he said.“It’s great, it’s amazing, but I think it can distract us from what we should have the focus on now — that is to keep on trying with lots of humility to improve our game.“Whenever we talk about the history of the points, or the statistics that are quite interesting … but we have to be careful because that can make us lose focus.”Quesada has strengthened his front row with Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro starting at prop while Marcos Kremer resumes his openside flanker role and Ramiro Moyano will start on the left wing.On the bench, he has also brought back the 36-year-old veteran Juan Manuel Leguizamon ahead of an expected titanic forward battle.For the Crusaders, 23-year-old Mitchell Dunshea replaces injured lock Scott Barrett while new All Black Braydon Ennor will partner Jack Goodhue in the centres with Ryan Crotty sidelined by a broken thumb.The two teams avoided each other in the regular season when the Crusaders finished top of the table with the Jaguares heading the South African conference.When the Jaguares despatched the ACT Brumbies in the semi-finals last week they dominated, except for in the scrum, which would not have gone unnoticed by the Crusaders.Similarly, the Jaguares would have taken note of Crusaders’ errors around the ruck and defensively in the midfield.“Mostly finals are won off great defence,” Robertson said, adding the Crusaders had concentrated this week on taking the emotion out of the occasion and focusing on performance.– Latin passion –But while he has quelled the Crusaders’ emotion, Robertson is in awe of how the Jaguares use their Latin passion for inspiration.“The passion and emotion they bring I think is a danger. If they come out and play with that energy, which is great and I enjoy that Latin expression that they bring, they’ll be emotional, they’ll be up for it, and they’ll be dangerous,” he said.The Crusaders’ key motivator is helping the recovery of a city that was stunned less than four months ago when a gunman opened fire in two mosques and killed 51 Muslims.“There’s been a lot of adversity for us as a team and as a city,” Robertson said.“One thing we’ve done, and I’m really proud of, is every time we’ve played we’ve showed how much we care about (the city) and care about each other.”Eight years ago the Crusaders were beaten finalists after being forced to play every game away after a destructive earthquake, which killed 185 people.Captain Sam Whitelock believes a title this year will be a significant boost for Christchurch.“I think it would,” he said, adding that the effort of the players would be evident in “the little things you can see as a player and hopefully the city and our whole region can see as well”.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000“They’re good,” Crusaders coach Scott Robertson said of the Jaguares, who were Thursday going through their paces training in Christchurch ahead of Saturday’s Super Rugby final © AFP / Sanka VIDANAGAMAWELLINGTON, New Zealand, Jul 4 – Helping to heal a devastated city has become a motivating factor for the Canterbury Crusaders as Super Rugby’s most successful side prepare for a showdown with the Jaguares, the season’s success story.The Christchurch-based Crusaders are bidding for a third successive title and their 10th overall while the Jaguares have reached the final in only their fourth year in the southern hemisphere competition.
By Paul LeckerSports ReporterGREENWOOD — Tyler Fuerlinger and Evan Nikolai each scored 17 points to lead the Marshfield Columbus Catholic boys basketball team to a 72-60 win over Greenwood on Tuesday night at Greenwood High School.The Dons improve to 6-4 overall and 5-1 in the Cloverbelt Conference East Division. The win keeps Columbus in a tie with Neillsville for second place in the conference standings, one game behind Spencer. Columbus hosts Spencer on Jan. 15.Greenwood is now 2-5 overall and 2-3 in the conference.Complete statistics were not provided.Columbus Catholic hosts Owen-Withee (6-2, 4-1 Cloverbelt East) on Friday.(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Tags:#Google#news#web Google announced a few additions to Gmail Labs today that make using labels a bit easier and expand the functionality of some of the already established features. Google announced Gmail Labs in June and, at that time, introduced 13 experimental features. This new batch of updates consists of 3 new features: custom label colors, label specific keyboard shortcuts, and the ability to change the order of items in the navbar.Custom Label Colors By default, Gmail lets you choose between 24 different colors for your labels. If your favorite color is not part of this default set, you can now pick and choose from a lot more colors for your labels and, in addition, you can also choose the color of the text in the labels.Go To Label Keyboard ShortcutIf you activate the ‘go to label keyboard shortcut’ feature, you can now hit ‘g’ ‘l’ on your keyboard and a little pop-up will show up that lets you type in the label/folder you want to navigate to. This comes with a build-in autocomplete feature, so unless you have an insanely complicated label structure in Gmail, you will only have to type in a few letters to get to your destination. For users who prefer to use keyboard shortcuts, this marks the first time they can just switch between labels without have to resort to using the mouse.Navbar Drag and DropOne minor annoyance of Gmail was that every item in the navbar on the left was always fixed in place. Even if you never used the built-in chat, it was always stuck in the same place. Now, you can rearrange these items on the navbar and move the labels up to the top and the chat feature to the bottom.Nice, But Nothing RevolutionaryIt’s nice to see that Google hasn’t forgotten about the Gmail Labs and keeps adding more features. None of these new experiments are earth-shattering, but for a successful product like Gmail, it’s the little evolutionary additions that matter more than radical design overhauls. For now, our favorite Gmail Labs feature is still Superstars, though we have already made good use of the new drag and drop feature to rearrange our menus. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market frederic lardinois Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting
International cricketers share much better relations due to the Indian Premier League as the Twenty20 event has given them an opportunity to know each other, feels Sri Lankan vice-captain Mahela Jayawardene.”It has opened doors for harmony among the players. In the IPL, you get to know other foreign players better. we have created better relations as a result of that,” he said.Jayawardene said the concept of the IPL and the various Twenty20 leagues across the globe has a lot of potential.”We have seen that in the IPL, we have seen that in the English counties, we have seen that in the Big Bash, that’s the way forward for Twenty20 cricket,” he said in a function to announce an Indian sponsor for the Sri Lankan team ‘Wayamba XI’, which will participate in the Champions League Twenty20 next month.”I think that will evolve quite a bit, just having the Twenty20 World Cup for the national teams, and then the 50-over cricket and Test matches will take a different path.”When the IPL came for the first time, everyone was surprised. But n the second and third year you saw how it became such a big thing,” Jayawardene said.Jayawardene, who will play for the Wayamba team in the Champions league, said the tournament will grow in stature with time.”People now understand what the concept is all about, we need to give it some more time and it will improve,” he said.Wayamba is captained by Jehan Mubarak and includes Mahela Jayawardene, Ajantha Mendis, Rangana Herath, Thisara Perera, Farveez Maharoof and Mahela Udawatte.advertisementSpeaking on the occasion, Sri Lanka Cricket secretary Nishantha Ranatunga said the Twenty20 version of the game can co-exist alongside Test cricket.”From the board’s point and personal point of view, I see Twenty20 as another product, We have Test cricket, one-day cricket and Twenty20 cricket,” Ranatunga said on Tuesday.”From the players’ point of view they have to prove themselves in all three formats. From the board’s point of view, I don’t see any harm as far as the players get the right breaks.”So far, we have been happy and lucky that the players have had the right breaks and participated in the country’s tournaments. It is good to have more competitive cricket, people like it, why not give it,” Ranatunga said.
Defending champion Roger Federer won his seventh Dubai Championships title and second of the year in defeating top-ranked Novak Djokovic 6-3, 7-5 on Saturday.This marked the seventh consecutive year – 11th time in 13 years – that Federer or Djokovic won this title. The only other tournaments Federer won seven times are Wimbledon, and Halle, Germany, both on grass.”Ever since I won here the first time, I fell in love with the tournament,” Federer said. “The seventh is quite unbelievable. It sounds pretty crazy to me.”Federer, who has 84 career titles, won in Brisbane, Australia, in January.”He deserved it,” Djokovic said. “I expected that from him.”I knew he was going to chip and charge, come to the net, serve and volley.”The 5,000-seat stadium was sold out, but many more people were standing around at the top. They were treated to a high-caliber match. Federer needed five more aces to become just the fourth player since 1991 to serve 9,000 career aces. He served 12 in the final.He joined Goran Ivanisevic (10,183), Ivo Karlovic (9,375), and Andy Roddick (9,074) in cracking the 9,000 aces mark.”I even remember which one it was because I was counting them,” Federer said. “It was one of the swinger wides.”It’s nice to get past that so I don’t have to think about it ever again, or until the next thousand or so.”Federer saved all seven break points he faced, while Djokovic lost both break points he faced. Djokovic sailed a backhand long on break point in the eighth game of the first set.advertisementIn the second set, Djokovic had a 40-0 lead in the 11th game, but watched Federer rebound to break his serve with an inside out forehand crosscourt winner.”The first set belonged to me, but the second set belonged to him more, really,” Federer said. “It was a huge game at 5-all, 40-love for him.”I crawled my way back into that game and ended up breaking him,” Federer added. “That was big but the break points I saved were even bigger.”