Qatar FIFA World Cup 2022 set to start a day earlier than the scheduled date
Doha, Qatar- Qatar FIFA World Cup 2022 is set to kick off a day earlier than scheduled with the first match set to take place on Sunday the 20th of November.
The opening match of the tournament was to be Senegal against the Netherlands at 10:00, earlier on Monday.
However, the administrative arm of the world governing body FIFA has submitted a proposal to move the Qatar game.
It followed discussions with Qatar and their opponents Ecuador, after receiving a request from the South American Confederation Conmebol.
The switch to a 20 November opening ceremony game would allow the Senegal-Netherlands match, scheduled for 1 pm local time on 21 November, to kick off later in the day. The Group B matches on that day, which also includes the United States vs Wales, would be unaffected.
In recent years, the World Cup host nation has appeared in the tournament’s first match, as the headliner in the monthlong event’s elaborate opening ceremony, but this year, in a break with that tradition, organizers took the unusual step of scheduling Qatar’s first game as the third of four matches on a busy first day of competition on Nov. 21.
Now a proposal to move Qatar’s game to November 20 has been sent to the most senior officials of FIFA. Those officials, a group that includes the leaders of soccer’s six global Confederations and the FIFA president, Gianni Infantino, will decide whether or not to approve it.
“It has been a longstanding tradition to mark the start of the FIFA World Cup with an opening ceremony on the occasion of the first match featuring either the hosts or the defending champions, a factor that is considered to have significant value from a ceremonial, cultural and commercial point of view.
As the tournament approaches, the FIFA administration is now fully aware of the various sporting, operational, commercial and legal implications of this uniquely compressed schedule.
The FIFA administration has assessed the commercial and legal implications of the proposal including the impact on contractual commitments across media rights, sponsorship, and ticketing and hospitality as well as the impact on travelling fans, and has determined that any risk is sufficiently outweighed by the value and benefits of the proposals,” said FIFA.
Should the switch of the opening match be approved, overseas ticket-holders who had planned to attend would face the potential challenge of changing their travel plans and rebooking hotel rooms, and any players competing in the European Leagues.
Nevertheless, according to a close source to the proposal, the switch could be confirmed as early as Thursday and the plan was to ensure that fans did not have to pay for any changes to flights or accommodation.
Jays Lose to Cardinals
Blue Jays 1 Cardinals 4
Yesterday the Jays had 19 hits. Today 3.
It was one of those games turned on a defensive play not made. Runners on first and second, two out, and a ground ball hit at Matt Chapman. Pretty hard hit, 97.7 mph according to GameDay, but what should have been a pretty easy play. But Matt bobbled it when he took it out of his glove, changed his target from the force at second base to first base, and threw wide of first. The runner on second scored, and the Cardinals had runners on second and third.
A softly hit ground ball down the third base line (65.6 mph) singled two more runs home. Suddenly it was 3-0.
The Cardinals got their fourth run on a hard-hit ground ball to second that Biggio knocked down but then threw into the dirt at first. Not called an error but a play that should have been made.
Not that it should have mattered, but we should have scored many runs. Cardinals’ starter, Jack Flaherty, had a lot of trouble with the strike zone.
- In the first, with two out, he walked 3 straight batters, but Brandon Belt struck out to end the inning.
- The second inning started with a walk to Danny Jansen, and Cavan Biggio was hit by pitch. But a fly-out and a double play ended the fun.
- The third inning started with walks two Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero (he had three walks on the day), but fly out, ground out, strikeout and we stranded more batters.
We’d get another walk in the fourth but, again, didn’t score.
Flaherty went 5 innings (he should have been out of the game sooner) with no hits, 7 walks and a hit batter. But no runs.
We did score in the eighth. Vlad and Daulton Varsho started the inning off with walks. A force at second and a wild pitch scored Vlad. Belt walked to put the, then, tying run on base. But the Cardinals took Jordan Hicks out of the game, and groundouts from Jansen and Biggio ended the inning.
There was another chance in the ninth. Singles from Kevin Kiermaier and Bichette, on either side of a George Springer strikeout, brought the tying run to the plate. But Vlad struck out, chasing, and Varsho popped out.
When you get 10 walks and a hit batter, you should score more than one run.
Kevin Gausman deserved better. He went 6 innings, giving up 8 hits (all singles), 1 walk and 7 strikeouts. But the 3 unearned runs were enough to get him the L. It could have been worse. In the sixth inning, with runners on the corners with no outs, Jordan Walker hit a ground ball to third. Chapman threw to Biggio, and we figured he’d go to first for the double play, but he saw that Nolan Gorman got a slow start going home from third. Biggio double (triple) clutched and threw home. Called safe on the field, but it was changed to an out on the replay challenge. Nice play by Biggio (though if he threw home quicker, we wouldn’t have needed the replay).
Adam Cimber pitched a scoreless seventh. Erik Swanson gave up a run on 3 hits in the eighth (helped along by Biggio’s misplay).
Not JoDs today. Vlad had the high mark (.074 WPA) but that strikeout in the eighth hurt.
The Other Awards go to: Chapman (-.091, plus the costly error), Springer (-.191 WPA, 0 for 5, 2 k. This after 5 hits yesterday) and Belt (-.082). Gausman had the number (-.133) but most of that was from Chapman’s error.
Tomorrow there is another afternoon game. It almost has to be better than today’s.
In the GameThread, we learned that the Jays had been no-hit six times (we didn’t have our first hit until the 7th today):
- Len Barker, Cleveland. May 1981.
- Dave Stewart, A’s. June 1990.
- Nolan Ryan, Rangers. May 1991.
- Justin Verlander, Tigers. May 2011.
- James Paxton, Mariners. May 2018.
- Verlander (again), Astros. September 2019.
Summer McIntosh sets another world record at Canadian swimming trials, this time in 400m individual medley
Summer McIntosh has broken another world record at the national swimming trials.
It’s her second world record this week at the place they call the fastest pool in Canada.
She is the first Canadian woman since Elaine Tanner in 1967 to hold two long course world records.
With her family in the crowd and many more fans cheering wildly inside the Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre, McIntosh powered her way to a time of 4:25.87 in the 400-metre individual medley to break Katinka Hosszú’s seven-year record.
Hosszú’s time of 4:26:36 was set in August 2016.
“It’s obviously really amazing and I’m happy to get another world record. Right now I’m just thinking about my legs. The 400m IM is one of the toughest events out there so going into tonight, whatever the time was, the time would be,” McIntosh told CBC Sports.
“Just tried to do my best and whatever that is I would be happy with it.”
McIntosh is the first swimmer in history to hold both the 400m freestyle and 400m individual medley long course world records at the same time.
Before Saturday night’s world record swim, her previous best time and national record was 4:28.61. That was set in December of last year.
Throughout the majority of the race on Saturday night McIntosh was under world record pace but fell behind it after the breaststroke.
After 350m she was half a second behind the record and finished half a second ahead of the world record. Her closing freestyle split was 29.69.
“Breaststroke is definitely my weakest stroke and I knew that. I know in training I need to improve on that. In the freestyle I always like to look at the clock and I think I saw 26.1 or something and I thought, just go, go crazy,” she said.
“I just gave it everything I got and I knew it would be close.”
Greg, Jill and Summer’s sister Brooke were jumping up and down and hugging each other as she touched the wall.
“For them to all be in the stands, I think this is the first time my sister has watched me compete in so long and I’m so grateful for her to witness this moment with me and enjoy it together. I can’t wait to see her later,” McIntosh said.
It was the largest crowd so far on day five of the trials. McIntosh says it helped her get this world record time.
“I could definitely hear the crowd on the breaststroke. I just needed to go, go, go. I didn’t think about anything else, just get my hand on the wall as fast as I could,” she said.
‘I left it all in the pool’
As she soaked up the moment on the pool deck, McIntosh was wincing in pain after the race.
“I’m so numb. The pain is so bad I can’t even process it yet. I just wanted to get through that race. I left it all in the pool,” McIntosh said.
A night earlier, McIntosh set a world junior and Canadian record in the 200m butterfly.
Her time of 2:04.70 took down her previous record time (2:05.05) set earlier this month. McIntosh’s smooth, powerful strokes helped her surge to the wall in a blistering time, once again electrifying the crowd.
She has been called a once in a generation talent and is certainly living up to that billing right now.
On Tuesday, opening night of trials, the swimming sensation broke the world record in the 400m freestyle. McIntosh stopped the clock in a time of 3:56.08, breaking the world record held by Ariarne Titmus of Australia.
On Thursday night, McIntosh broke her own world junior record in the 200m individual medley. Her time of 2:06.89 yesterday would have won gold at worlds last summer.
And her time also would have won gold at the Tokyo Olympics by more than a second.
She’ll finish the trials competition by swimming the 200m freestyle on Sunday night.
After wild opener, Cardinals, Blue Jays out to restore order
The St. Louis Cardinals are banking on starting pitcher Jack Flaherty to make a strong rebound from two injury-marred seasons.
They hope that process starts Saturday when Flaherty draws the start at home against the Toronto Blue Jays.
“At the end of the day, we are counting on him to be a dude,” Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol said. “And he has prepared in a way to do exactly that.”
Flaherty was 2-1 with 4.25 ERA last season in nine appearances (eight starts), after recovering from a shoulder injury. He was 9-2 with a 3.22 ERA in 2021, but he was limited to 17 appearances (15 starts) by an oblique strain that season.
Back in 2019, Flaherty was 11-8 with 2.75 ERA and could become a difference-maker for the Cardinals if he can regain his previous top-of-the-rotation form.
Flaherty has never pitched against the Blue Jays. He will need to deal with the high-octane Toronto offence that opened the season with a 10-9 victory over the Cardinals on Thursday.
The Blue Jays’ offensive attack sported plenty of standouts from George Springer (5-for-6, four runs) to Bo Bichette (4-for-6, two runs scored), Matt Chapman (3-for-5) and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (2-for-4, three RBIs).
Toronto erased 6-5, 7-6 and 9-8 deficits to outlast the Cardinals.
“Normally, when you go through that situation and you respond every time the other team scores, it shows courage and what we can do as a team overall,” said Blue Jays outfielder Daulton Varsho, who drove in the team’s first run of the season on a first-inning double in his first at-bat with the franchise. “It’s just a lot of fun playing that type of baseball, because we can do a lot of things other teams can’t.”
The Blue Jays manufactured the game-winning run when Kevin Kiermaier went from first to third on Springer’s game-tying single in the ninth inning and then scored on a sacrifice fly from Guerrero.
Kevin Gausman, who was 12-10 with a 3.35 ERA last season, will draw the start for Toronto. He went 1-1 with a 4.22 ERA in two starts against the Cardinals last season and is 1-4 with a 4.05 ERA in nine career games against St. Louis, including five starts.
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