GRAINS-Wheat retreats from 11-day high, possible…

SYDNEY, Aug 20 – U.S. wheat futures fell on Monday, easing after gains of more than 3 percent in the previous session when prices hit an 11-day high, although losses were checked by concerns that Russia may limit exports. FUNDAMENTALS * The most active wheat futures on the Chicago Board Of Trade were down 0.7 percent at $5.75-3/4 a bushel by 0156 GMT, having closed up 3.2 percent on Friday when prices hit $5.82-3/4 a bushel – the highest since Aug. 7. * The most active soybean futures were up 1.3 percent to $9.04-1/4 a bushel, near the session high of $9.07 a bushel – the highest since Aug 9. Soybeans fell 0.5 percent on Friday. * The most active corn futures were up 0.1 percent to $3.79-1/4 a bushel, having closed down 0.3 percent in the previous session. * Wheat supported after traders who met with Russia’s agriculture ministry said the country will consider restricting 2018-19 shipments once they reach 30 million tonnes, following a request from meat-producing regions. * The ministry denied it discussed export curbs. However, the meeting still added to doubts about Russia’s ability to export a projected 35 million tonnes of wheat. * Soybeans draw support after the Wall Street Journal reported last week that the U.S. and China are working on a plan to resolve their trade dispute by November. MARKET NEWS * The dollar sagged on Monday as investor demand for the safe-haven currency receded on optimism over a reduction in U.S.-China trade tensions, with the focus on discussions between the two countries due this week. * Oil prices dipped on Monday as concerns over slowing economic growth weighed on markets. * U.S. stocks closed higher on Friday, with the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average extending gains and the Nasdaq turning positive on reports of progress in tariff disputes between the United States and its trading partners China and Mexico. DATA AHEAD (GMT) 0600 Germany Producer prices Jul 0900 Euro zone Construction output Jun Grains prices at 0156 GMT Contract Last Change Pct chg Two-day chg MA 30 RSI CBOT wheat 575.75 -4.00 -0.69% +2.45% 551.25 57 CBOT corn 379.25 0.50 +0.13% -0.13% 372.78 56 CBOT soy 904.25 11.50 +1.29% +0.81% 878.66 61 CBOT rice 10.45 $0.10 +0.97% -0.10% $11.42 34 WTI crude 65.82 -$0.09 -0.14% +0.55% $68.49 37 Currencies Euro/dlr $1.143 -$0.001 -0.05% +0.49% USD/AUD 0.7303 -0.001 -0.10% +0.61% Most active contracts Wheat, corn and soy US cents/bushel. Rice: USD per hundredweight RSI 14, exponential (Reporting by Colin Packham; editing by Richard Pullin)

Arsenal legend wants new signing to be in the starting lineup

Arsenal has a horror start of the match after getting two goals down in the first 20 minutes of the game but the goals from Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Alex Iwobi make sure that Arsenal went in half-time with scores again on the level term.

Arsenal’s Lucas Torreira during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London.


According to Arsenal legend Lee Dixion, Arsenal new signing Lucas Torreira is a “massive difference” in the Arsenal display after coming from the bench in their 3-2 loss against Chelsea. Arsenal should include Lucas in their starting lineup after his fabulous display after coming as a substitute for misfiring Xhaka after half-time.

Arsenal signed Torreira from Sampdoria in the summer transfer window but yet to start in the Premier League. The display against Chelsea and misfiring Xhaka could make way for him to be in the playing eleven in the coming matches.

Arsenal Legend Dixion said when speaking to NBC, “Torreira was a massive difference as soon as he came on. He needs to play.”

Pedro opened the scoring for Chelsea before Morata scored firing past Cech for his goal after a long barren run in front of goals but Arsenal equaled before half-time. Chelsea takes home 3 points after the late goal from Alonso by scoring from Hazard cross in the stoppage time. Unai Emery is still to pick points for Arsenal after succeding Wenger this season.

After the match, Emery revealed his decision to substitute Xhaka in half-time. He said, “This is a tactical decision because he also had a yellow card. We didn’t want to take the risk with the yellow card and we wanted to give a chance to other players we have in the middle.”

🔴 @Arsenal have lost their opening 2 @PremierLeague games….

😳 For the first time EVER. ❌

👀 The Unai Emery Effect.

— SPORF (@Sporf) August 18, 2018

Emery also answered his views about his feeling after the two games in charge of Arsenal, He added,“I think we need to keep the players calm and continue working. I know we need to improve things, I know we need to push the players to work with our ideas.”

Emery side needs to improve their performance if they want to achieve their goal of finishing in the top four of the premier league and win some silverware this term.

Arsenal is in the tight spot after losing first two games of the season first time in 26-years but there is still a lot of matches to go but the North London Club has to improve if they want to achieve their goals. Lucas performance in their loss is one of the best and Emery should start him in the coming games to get better of him.

Lucas Torreira is a very talented player and can become better after proper guidance and exposure. Emery should be using him more often as he is a strong player and can provide stability and composure to the team as Xhaka is misfiring for quite some time now and need to be axed for the time being.




Brisbane ignore Bennett saga: McCullough

Brisbane hooker Andrew McCullough says the Broncos are trying to focus on a home final rather than the “saga” surrounding coach Wayne Bennett’s future.

Bennett’s future is up in the air ahead of seventh-placed Brisbane’s away clash with heavyweights Sydney Roosters on Saturday night after having his pitch to stay on in 2020 rejected by the Broncos board.

“Each club goes through different sagas with contracts. It’s a big business and rugby league goes on regardless – for us it is about playing good footy,” McCullough said.

Serious misconduct by WA public servant

Findings of serious misconduct have been made against a former technology manager at Horizon Power, who corruptly and secretly committed the West Australian state-owned utility to paying his company ongoing fees.

The Corruption and Crime Commission investigated the conduct of Paul Thomas and his business partner Anthony Raspa earlier this year, and on Monday handed down a finding of serious misconduct against Mr Thomas.

The CCC heard he told Mr Raspa: “How do I create a little entity, wrap up Horizon Power, rape as much as I can out of it and then we both f*** off?”

Spikeball: the US sport coming to a beach or backyard…

For a game still in its infancy Spikeball — a beach sport which looks like the love child of volleyball and tennis — is already making global waves.

The rules are simple: each team of two must bounce a ball slightly larger than a tennis ball on a flat trampoline-type net 36 inches (91 centimeters) in diameter: about the size of a hula hoop.

Like in volleyball, a side can touch the ball a maximum of three times.

There are no boundaries, and a point is won when the opposing team fails to hit the ball back to the net.

In May, and again in July, the US sports channel ESPN2 even broadcast Spikeball tournaments — and the game has also spread to Europe and Canada.

It was created in the 1980s and original called Roundnet though its precise origins are unclear.

The concept was reborn in 2007 when a young Chicago entrepreneur named Chris Ruder began to sell gear for the game from his company named Spikeball.

Last fall he said he sold his millionth net and claims the company, which generated $15 million in sales in 2017, has since sold hundreds of thousands more.

“It’s definitely taken off like crazy in the past couple years,” said Steve Halek, a player at an official USA Spikeball tournament in late July at Point Pleasant, a seaside resort in New Jersey.

No fewer than 150 teams were registered for this year’s tournament, founded by Spikeball in 2013.

– ‘Anyone can play it’ –

Spikeball is a game “accessible to everyone. Anyone can play it,” said Halek.

“There are people that are ridiculously good but you can also play it in your backyard with your family.”

Halek said that Spikeball is “closer to tennis” than any other sport he knew, but others have said it also has a dash of Basque pelota and squash.

More than 2,500 teams signed up this season to play in official tournaments, with the grand finale scheduled for October in Santa Monica, California, said Jack Scotti, director of USA Spikeball.

Aside from the official tournaments there are hundreds of local tournaments organized this year with the support of Spikeball, which often contributes with gear and awards for the winners.

What separates Spikeball from other companies that make the same equipment is that “we have a community,” said Scotti.

“It’s… exposure and getting people to play the sport,” he said. “We’re pushing the sport.”

USA Spikeball has even created a “pro” division, though the winner of a tour event typically walks away with a few hundred dollars of prize money.

USA Spikeball wants to wants to preserve the popular side of sport, maintaining the festive and informal atmosphere that evokes a holiday camp for young adults — even though at this point most players are men.

“It’s a game that you can pick up really quickly,” said Scotti. “In one day, you could be addicted to it.”

Matt Pereira, who competed at the Point Pleasant tournament, described the game as “really unique,” and marveled that it had “no boundaries. So wherever the ball goes, the games goes. It’s very free.”

– Still evolving –

In Spikeball the angle the ball hits the net and coordination with your teammate are more important than speed or strength, players say.

Now that the game is starting to spread the globally, the challenge is to make sure it is more than just a passing fad.

To this end Ruder is busy organizing tournaments. He is having success at the college level, and is developing the game in high schools by sending kits and training PE teachers around the world.

For Scotti, with Spikeball “there’s always this next level, and the game is still evolving.”

Several players have been calling for the sport to be tweaked to prevent it becoming just a game dominated by powerful serves, a problem once suffered by tennis and something that Ruder acknowledges is “not very fun” to watch on TV.

Rule changes could include loosening the net.

If somehow the game can be played a bit slower, “it could be a sport that sticks around for a long time,” opined Spikeball veteran Jim Swanson.

Atlanta’s Josef Martinez ties MLS record with 27th goal

ATLANTA – Josef Martinez scored his 27th goal to tie the MLS season record and help Atlanta United beat the Columbus Crew 3-1 on Sunday.

Julian Gressel set up Martinez’s scoring opportunity with a steal in the Crew’s half of the field. He passed it up to Martinez, who broke down a pair of defenders before finishing with his left foot from the top of the penalty area in the 31st minute.

With nine games left in the regular season, Martinez matched Roy Lassiter (1996), Chris Wondolowski (2012) and Bradley Wright-Phillips (2014) for the season record.

Hector Villalba scored in the 76th minute to give Atlanta (15-4-6) a 2-1 lead, driving in from midfield and cutting a left-footed shot back into the right corner. Martinez laid it off to Miguel Almiron, who finished from the top of the penalty arc to cap the scoring in the 82nd minute.

Gyasi Zardes tied it at 1 for the Crew (11-8-6) in the 50th minute.


WASHINGTON – Luciano Acosta scored early and Zoltan Stieber added a late goal to help D.C. United win its third in a row, 2-0 over the 10-man New England Revolution on Sunday night.

Acosta opened the scoring for United (7-9-6) in the 13th minute, finishing Paul Arriola’s cross with a left-footed shot that got through with a deflection off the goalkeeper.

New England (7-9-8) went down a man in the 73rd minute when Scott Caldwell was shown his second yellow card, both for unsporting behavior.

Stieber made it 2-0 in the 89th minute on a breakaway.

D.C. United is 5-1-2 since opening Audi Field on July 14.

DC United stays hot, beats 10-man Revolution 2-0

WASHINGTON – Luciano Acosta scored early and Zoltan Stieber added a late goal to help D.C. United win its third in a row, 2-0 over the 10-man New England Revolution on Sunday night.

Acosta opened the scoring for United (7-9-6) in the 13th minute, finishing Paul Arriola’s cross with a left-footed shot that got through with a deflection off the goalkeeper.

New England (7-9-8) went down a man in the 73rd minute when Scott Caldwell was shown his second yellow card, both for unsporting behavior.

Stieber made it 2-0 in the 89th minute on a breakaway sprung by Junior Moreno’s long ball up the middle.

D.C. United is 5-1-2 since opening Audi Field on July 14. The Revs are winless in their last seven and have lost five of the last six.

WA fire hero did what he thought was right

Armed with a fire extinguisher, Daniel McMillan ran into a burning Perth home after hearing screams and seeing a neighbour rush out of the house carrying a child.

Edward John Herbert, who was naked and in a drug-induced psychosis, had set his three-year-old daughter on fire and also doused her autistic sister with petrol.

Mr McMillan described the smell as he entered the Doubleview home as “like burnt bacon”.

“I’m not sure what was going through my mind. I wasn’t really thinking about it, that’s probably why I did what I did,” he told AAP.

Herbert lunged at his neighbour with a filleting knife that had a 20cm blade, attempting to stab Mr McMillan in the abdomen.

But Mr McMillan was able to dodge the attack and hit Herbert on the head with the fire extinguisher.

Mr McMillan is receiving a bravery medal for his heroics on August 28, 2015, but says he was just running on adrenaline and doing what he thought was right.

“Every child should be able to have somewhere safe to live,” he said.

“I just did what I thought was right at the time.

“More people should do these things, then the world might be a better place.”

Herbert, who had shouted that aliens were going to get him and claimed “the werewolf is coming” before he attacked his daughters, was later found guilty of several offences and sentenced to 17 years behind bars.

Mr McMillan said he could not bring himself to attend the trial.

He said he was proud and thankful to receive the award but did not think his actions would be considered “such a big deal”.

“I was surprised to be nominated for a bravery medal. I wasn’t expecting it. Other people did lots of things that night.”

Mr McMillan said he remained the type of person who would speak out if he saw someone doing something wrong.

Artist Charles Blackman dies aged 90

Prize-winning artist Charles Blackman has died in Sydney surrounded by loved ones a week after celebrating his 90th birthday.

His son Auguste Blackman paid tribute to his father on Monday, saying he leaves “a wonderful legacy”, The Australian reports.

“He painted our dreams. He painted the dreams of everyone,” he said.

Blackman became famous in the 1950s for his haunting Schoolgirls paintings depicting girls and women lost in daydreams, and then for his Alice in Wonderland series, which conveyed abstract scenes from the popular children’s book.

Blackman’s paintings were widely exhibited in galleries around Australia and also at the Whitechapel and Tate galleries in London. He was awarded an OBE for his services to the arts in 1977.

Blackman spent much of his later life out of the public eye after he was diagnosed with the memory disorder Korsakoff’s syndrome.

Lynx celebrate “Lindsay Whalen Day” win victory

MINNEAPOLIS – Lindsay Whalen scored 10 points in the final regular-season home game of her career, Sylvia Fowles set the WNBA season record for rebounds and the Minnesota Lynx closed the season with a 88-83 victory over the Washington Mystics on Sunday night.

The Target Center had 13,013 in attendance for the game. Governor Mark Dayton declared it “Lindsay Whalen Day” in Minnesota and a retirement ceremony followed the game.

The 36-year-old Whalen starred at the University of Minnesota and now coaches the Gophers.

Fowles had 26 points and 14 rebounds to finish with a WNBA-record 404 rebounds. She broke the mark of 403 set last year by Jonquel Jones.

Whalen hit a 3-pointer that gave the Lynx (18-16) the lead for good during a 13-0 run that ended at 78-69 early in the fourth quarter. The Mystics (22-12) got no closer than the final score.

The seventh-seeded Lynx will visit the sixth-seeded Los Angeles Sparks – a rematch of the last two WNBA finals – in the single-elimination first round of the WNBA playoffs Tuesday night.

The No. 3 seed Mystics had their eight-game winning streak snapped and their 22 regular-season wins tied a franchise best. Washington will have a bye through the first round of the playoffs to host the Lynx-Sparks winner in the second round Thursday night.


LAS VEGAS – Elizabeth Williams scored 20 points and Atlanta beat Las Vegas to take the No. 2 seed in the WNBA playoffs.

The Dream (23-11) have byes through the first two single-elimination rounds, and will have home-court advantage in the best-of-five semifinals.

Jessica Breland and Montgomery added 16 points each for Atlanta, Alex Bentley had 12, and Tiffany Hayes 11. A’ja Wilson had 21 points for the Aces (14-20).


UNCASVILLE, Conn. – Jasmine Thomas scored 27 points and Connecticut beat Los Angeles to secure the fourth seed in the playoffs.

Connecticut (21-13) will have a first-round bye and host the Phoenix-Dallas winner in the second round. Los Angeles (19-15) took the sixth seed and will host Minnesota in the first round.

Candace Parker led Los Angeles with 20 points and 10 rebounds.


SEATTLE – Breanna Stewart and Crystal Langhorne had 15 points each to help Seattle beat Dallas.

Sue Bird sat out the game and Stewart played just 13 minutes in the game that had no effect on the Storm’s No. 1 playoff seed.

Seattle (26-8) closed the season winning eight of the last nine and will begin the playoffs in the semifinals with byes through the first two single-elimination rounds and home-court advantage throughout.

Glory Johnson led the Wings (15-19) with 16 points.


PHOENIX – DeWanna Bonner had 23 points and 10 rebounds to help Phoenix beat New York, sending the Liberty to their 13th straight loss.

Stephanie Talbot added 18 points, and Diana Taurasi had 16. The fifth-seeded Mercury (20-14) will host eighth-seeded Dallas on Tuesday night in the first round of the playoffs.

Kia Nurse had 22 of her 28 points in the first half for the Liberty (7-27).

FEVER 97, SKY 92

CHICAGO – Candice Dupree and Cappie Pondexter had 22 points each in Indiana’s victory over Chicago.

The Fever snapped a five-game losing to finish a WNBA-worst 6-28.

Diamond DeShields had 19 of her 27 points in the first half for the Sky (13-21).