#NHL; #ReturnToPlayProtocol; #SmallGroupWorkouts; #IceSkating; #Covid19Pandemic
Ottawa, May 25 (Canadian-Media): A memo was passed on Monday by the National Hockey League (NHL), which was forced to pause its season March 12 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, announcing early June as the start date for Phase 2 of its return-to-play protocol, media reports said.
NHL. Image credit: Twitter Handle
The NHL players would continuously monitor the situation, read the memo and make appropriate adjustments with the time following discussion with all relevant parties
The memo also included the opening of practice rinks and allowing small, voluntary group workouts on and off the ice.
The NHL, which has worked closely with the NHL Players' Association on the phased approach, said that while it views the protocol as comprehensive, it will not take any risk.
"A range of clinical scenarios exist, from very mild to fatal outcome," the 22-page memo continued. "COVID-19 generally affects older age groups and those with previously existing medical conditions, more so than younger, and otherwise healthy, individuals.
The NHL/NHLPA Return to Play Committee has been hashing out details of what the game will look like if it's allowed to return this summer. The union's executive board approved further negotiations on a 24-team format Friday.
The Phase 2 memo sent to teams Sunday and made public Monday also states players and staff will be administered COVID-19 nasal swab tests two days before training begins, and will be tested twice a week afterwards.
Daily self-administered temperature and symptom checks at home by the players would be followed by temperature and symptom check at the entrance of the club facility.
Players who live in NHL markets other than where they play will be permitted to use local facilities, pending availability, meaning they won't have to travel back to their team's home cities for Phase 2.
Most NHL players have not been on the ice since the league halted its schedule, although some, including a number of Swedish players who returned home, have been skating in recent weeks.
The league said any player or staff member who develops COVID-19 symptoms during Phase 2, including cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, fever/chills, muscle pain (not exercise-related), loss of smell or taste, cold-like symptoms, or gastrointestinal symptoms are expected to immediately notify medical officials and self-isolate.
If a COVID-19 test comes back positive, the player/staff member's team will conduct contract tracing in conjunction with local health regulations.
NHL players have been awarded with the Stanley Cup every year since 1893, except for 1919 because of the Spanish flu outbreak, and 2005 when the entire campaign was cancelled due to a lockout.
Olympic Refuge Foundation: Sport can offer hope to displaced communities during the COVID-19 pandemic
#UNHCR; #ORF; #Sports; #Covid19Pandemic; #MentalHealth
Geneva, May 19 (Canadian-Media): The Olympic Refuge Foundation (ORF) today highlighted how sport can help build resilience and boost the mental health of forcibly displaced young people, especially during the COVID‐19 pandemic, UNHCR reports said.
Syrian sisters Zeinab and Rayan practice Taekwondo during lockdown at their home in Azraq refugee camp, Jordan. Image credit: © UNHCR/Mohammad Hawari
The ORF Chair and IOC President, Thomas Bach, and the Vice-Chair, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, warned of the growing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the mental health of refugees and others uprooted by war, violence and persecution around the world, compounding already very challenging circumstances.
Refugees are among the most vulnerable to the consequences of the pandemic – often residing in overcrowded camps, settlements and urban areas in cramped conditions with inadequate access to fresh water and hygiene supplies. Mental health conditions amongst people affected by conflict are already two or three times higher than in the general population, with one in five people experiencing mental health challenges.
Meeting remotely today, the ORF Board agreed on a number of initiatives to boost the protection of forcibly displaced young people and help improve their mental health through sport.
As an example, the ORF is launching a pilot project in Uganda, using sport to improve the mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of more than 10,000 refugee and host community young people (aged 15 to 24). Led by a consortium of five agencies (the ORF, AVSI, UOC, Youth Sport Uganda and UNHCR Uganda), the programme will deliver a nationwide Sport for Protection programme.
Additionally, the Board has:
ORF Vice-Chair and UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi added, “Around the world we are seeing troubling evidence of the devastating impact of the pandemic on the mental health and well-being of young refugees. The Olympic Refuge Foundation has rightly identified the important contribution that sport can make to psychosocial wellbeing and is accelerating its work to address this growing challenge.”
#Australia; #India; #ICCRanking, #ViratKohli, #ICC;
Melbourne (Australia), May 1 (Canadian-Media): Australia's official test rankings moved to the top on Friday ending India's top position since October 2016, removing Virat Kohli and his men's impressive 12-1 win-loss record in the 2016-17 period, media reports said.
ICC Cricket. Image credit: website
India, which registered its maiden test series victory in Australia last year, is scheduled to tour Down Under later this year.
South Africa suffered the biggest fall of eight points in its ratings, which sees its decline below Sri Lanka into sixth place.
India still lead the ICC World Test Championship.
England has moved into second position with 268 points while India is up one place to third, just two points behind.
When the global T20I rankings were launched 12 months ago, there were 80 ranked teams.
Since then seven teams have joined the table (Bermuda, Cayman Islands, Italy, Norway, Portugal, Romania and Turkey), while three countries (France, Isle of Man and Israel) have lost their rankings having played insufficient matches.
Last year Australia was able to retain the Ashes in England and was unbeaten in five home tests against Pakistan and New Zealand.
Another South Asian team, Pakistan was replaced by Australia, to top the Twenty20 rankings as well, which boosted their confidence ahead of their home World Cup.