Monthly Archives: June 2015

Cuba has qualified 403 athletes for XVII Pan Am Games in Toronto

Delegación cubana en la ceremonia inaugural de los XVI Juegos Panamericanos 2011, en el estadio Panamericano de Guadalajara, en México, el 14 de octubre de 2011.  AIN FOTO/Juan Pablo CARRERAS/sdl

Cuban delegation at the opening ceremony of the 2011 Pan Am Games in Guadalajara, Mexico on October 14, 2011 | Juan Pablo Carreras / AIN

Cubans will compete in 29 sports with more spots to be assigned in track and field, swimming, diving and tennis. “Cuba is aiming for second place among the countries at the XVII Pan American Games,” being held July 10-26 in Toronto, Canada.

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Circus Maximus: Olympic spoilsport

The '92 Games in Barcelona are by many thought to be the most succesful Games in history | David Meenagh/Flickr

The ’92 Games in Barcelona are by many thought to be the most succesful Games in history | David Meenagh/Flickr

By ANDREAS SELLIAAS

Book review: In his new book, Circus Maximus, economist Andrew Zimbalist analyses the benefits and risks of hosting a sports mega-event and finds that the economic risks by far exceed the benefits.

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US embargo still punishes Cuban baseball players

CubaBlockadeBillBoard01-650

By MATT PEPPE*

Yoan Moncada, the 19-year-old Cuban baseball phenom, agreed on February 23 to sign with the Boston Red Sox. He is the latest talent from the baseball-crazy nation to join the Major Leagues. Moncada will receive a $31.5 million signing bonus, which should make him financially secure for life. But because of the U.S. government’s continued economic war on the Cuban people, in the form of the 54-year-old embargo, Moncada – unlike MLB prospects from any other country on the planet – will be forced to surrender residency in his native land to realize his professional dreams. Continue reading

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Playing the ponies: horse racing and the US neoliberal agenda

By MATT PEPPE*

2015.American Pharoah-Head On(June 8) – American Pharoah on Saturday (June 6) cruised to a five-length victory in the Belmont Stakes and became the first thoroughbred to claim horse racing’s Triple Crown in 37 years. The publicity and excitement of having a horse become the 12th Triple Crown winner should be a much welcomed shot in the arm to a sport that long ago lost its iconic place in American sports – along with boxing and baseball. In New York State, where American Pharoah’s victory took place, the horse racing industry has been the victim of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s strong-armed tactics to keep the cash cow alive at the expense of the few diehard fans who still remain loyal to the Sport of Kings. Continue reading

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Brazil probe of Nike, other sponsors

Nike Brazil Kit Launch February 10, 2011 | Alan Clarke

Nike Brazil Kit Launch February 10, 2011 | Alan Clarke

Soccer CorporatizationCharacteristically, neither Nike nor any U.S. or European monopoly was named in the FBI indictment of the FIFA officials for corruption. Yet a 1996 deal with “Sportswear Company A” (sic) gave Nike the right to arrange five friendly matches for the Brazilian national team per year, picking both opponents and players included in so-called “Nike games.” BRAD HAYNES AND ANTHONY BOADLE, Reuters Continue reading

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The FIFA war is not about football or corruption

Soccer CorporatizationWhy are the Americans so interested in “cleaning up” a game that has been managed mostly by Europeans so far? Why did Swiss cops come with New York Times journalists in tow? Why did they arrest officials exclusively from South and Central American federations? The FBI’s move against seven FIFA officials on charges of corruption is seen by most countries as a desperate US-Euro effort to isolate Russia and re-open the bids for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. SHOBHAN SAXENA*

From Brazil to Russia: symbolic hand-over at the Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, 13 July 2014. Sepp Blatter, president of FIFA, stands between Russian president Vladimir Putin and Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff in this grab from the official FIFA video of the event. Russia will host the 2018 Fifa World Cup.

From Brazil to Russia: symbolic hand-over at the Maracana, Rio de Janeiro, 13 July 2014. Sepp Blatter, president of FIFA, stands between Russian president Vladimir Putin and Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff in this grab from the official FIFA video of the event. Russia will host the 2018 Fifa World Cup.

Rio de Janeiro (May 31) – Forget the analogies about football being more important than life and religion. The Beautiful Game has always been all about politics among nations – on and off the pitch. And now, it’s reaching Cold War levels. Continue reading

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Washington politicizes football – Paul Craig Roberts

(June 3) – Washington’s attack on world soccer is following the script of Washington’s attack on the Russian-hosted Sochi Olympics. The difference is that Washington couldn’t stop the Olympics from being held in Sochi, and was limited to scaring off westerners with lies and propaganda. In the current scandal orchestrated by Washington, Washington intends to use its takeover of FIFA to renege on FIFA’s decision that Russia host the next World Cup. Continue reading

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