The Most Likely Scores in the World Cup Final

After one of the most astonishing score lines in the history of the World Cup on Tuesday — Germany 7, Brazil 1 — nothing that happens in Sunday’s World Cup final would be a total surprise. But we do have estimates of the most likely final scores for the game.Germany is a 63 percent favorite to defeat Argentina, according to the FiveThirtyEight forecast. Argentina had a slightly higher Soccer Power Index (SPI) rating when the tournament began, but Germany has seen its rating rise, particularly after its thrashing of Brazil, and it now ranks No. 1 by some margin. Betting lines also have Germany favored.The SPI match predictor allows us to predict the number of goals scored and allowed for each club. It calls for 1.7 goals by Germany and 1.2 by Argentina.There are a couple of problems with this — for one thing, a team cannot score seven-tenths of a goal. So the match predictor uses a version of a Poisson distribution, which calculates the probability of the teams finishing with any whole-number score. For example, if Germany scores an average of 1.7 goals, how often does it score exactly two goals or exactly three goals? That’s what a Poisson distribution does.Another issue is that the match predictor is calibrated on the basis of 90-minute matches when knockout-round games can go to extra time. To account for extra-time results, we ran an additional Poisson regression based on the results of extra-time games in major international tournaments since 2005. (In geek speak, we’re nesting a Poisson distribution within another Poisson distribution.) All of that produces the following heat map:Read left to right for Germany’s score and top to bottom for Argentina’s. Boxes in which the score is still tied after extra time represent cases where the game goes to penalty kicks (there is about a 14 percent chance of this happening). The 10 most probable scores are as follows:Germany 2, Argentina 1Germany 1, Argentina 0Argentina 2, Germany 1Germany 2, Argentina 0Argentina 1, Germany 0Germany 3, Argentina 11-1 draw (game goes to penalties)Germany 3, Argentina 2Germany 3, Argentina 0Argentina 2, Germany 0What are the odds of another 7-1 scoreline? The model says there is only about a 0.06 percent probability of such a score favoring Germany (about one chance in 1,600). There’s even less of a chance — more than 10,000-to-1 against — of the same score favoring Argentina.But these figures may underestimate the chance of astonishingly lopsided results. The mathematical basis for the Poisson distribution is the assumption of independent trials. This is a little inexact (it describes a special case of a Poisson distribution called a binomial distribution), but a Poisson distribution is treating a soccer game something like this:Suppose we expect Germany to score 1.7 goals on average in a 90-minute game against Argentina. That translates into about a 2 percent probability (1 chance in 50) of scoring a goal in a given minute of play.So we can run an experiment where we randomly draw ping-pong balls from a set of 90 lottery machines, one representing each minute of the game. In each machine, there are 50 balls, one labeled GOAL! and 49 blanks. The probability of drawing a GOAL! from one machine doesn’t affect what happens with the next one. (This is the assumption of independent trials.) After we’ve drawn balls from all 90 machines, we count the number of GOAL! balls. This represents how often Germany scored in the game.We can repeat the experiment a bunch of times. Most commonly, we’ll wind up with something like one or two GOAL! balls. But other times we’ll have drawn zero or four or six. The relative frequency of these outcomes represents the Poisson distribution for Germany’s score.As strange as this experiment might seem, it isn’t a bad mathematical approximation of a soccer game. And for the most part, Poisson distributions do a good job of modeling real-world soccer scores.But there are some complications. For instance, we may have some estimate of how the absences of Neymar and Thiago Silva might affect Germany’s chances of scoring against Brazil. But there is some uncertainty around that: Maybe Brazil plays more fluidly when it isn’t waiting around for Neymar to do something, or maybe it breaks down. This is equivalent to not knowing exactly how many GOAL! balls and blanks there are in the ping-pong machines. This uncertainty will tend to slightly increase the number of extreme outcomes (Germany scoring zero goals or a lot of goals) that we observe in the real world.Another issue is that the texture of play in soccer depends to some extent on the scoreline. Play is usually tighter and more conservative in a drawn game and then opens up once the tie is broken. As a result, standard Poisson distributions slightly underestimate the chance of draws and of some wild scores, such as 5-2. (The variant of the Poisson distribution that we use is meant to address this problem.)For the most part in sports, these complications are not worth worrying about. There are cases where a Poisson distribution or a normal distribution isn’t perfect — normal distributions seem to slightly underestimate the number of extreme outlier scores in sports — but they usually hold up reasonably well. Nobody gets hurt when you say that Germany has only a 1-in-4,000 chance of winning by six goals when it actually had a 1-in-400 chance.But real-world distributions are often slightly fat-tailed, meaning that extreme outliers happen more often than the normal distribution predicts. And — outside the sports world — using the wrong model can cause real problems, underestimating the chance of an earthquake or a financial crisis. read more

Conventional and FancyStats Rate The NHLs Deadline Trades Much Differently

This year’s NHL trade deadline saw quite a few transactions — 74 veteran players switched teams in the month leading up to (and including) the March 2 moratorium — and some of the moves could shift the league’s balance of power with the playoffs a little more than a month away.In anticipation of Monday’s cutoff, we listed about 35 likely trade candidates and their possession metrics, to get a sense of who the advanced statistics would favor if any of them were dealt. But now that all the deals have been cut, how highly do the numbers regard the big names moved at the deadline?It totally depends on which numbers you look at. Conventional stats — such as goals, assists and plus-minus, as synthesized into point shares above replacement (PSAR) — favor players like newly acquired Detroit winger Erik Cole. Cole bounced back from a pair of down seasons to average a goal every three or so games with a +4 rating (on a Dallas team that’s -11 overall) before being traded. That performance was enough to lead all deadline acquisitions in 2014-15 PSAR. But as we’ve learned, the NHL’s #EnhancedStats movement emphasizes more than traditional counting statistics.Advanced metrics such as Corsi and Fenwick (ahem, “shot attempts” and “unblocked shot attempts”) started a trend in player evaluation of focusing on his ability to improve his team’s puck-possession rate while on the ice. If possession is a reliable path to team success, the reasoning goes, you want to stock your roster with players most associated with strong team possession rates when they’re in the game.Now, Stephen Burtch’s Delta Corsi (dCorsi) and Domenic Galamini’s Usage-Adjusted Corsi have pushed attempts to isolate a skater’s effect on his team’s possession rate even further. The relatively new twist provided by those stats? Attempting to account for player-usage factors — such as position played, teammate and opponent quality, zone starts and even faceoff winning percentages in dCorsi’s case — on a player’s possession rate in addition to looking at on-ice versus off-ice differences.In the past, you’d have to eyeball a player’s workload and usage as a means of context for, say, his relative Corsi. But these new stats attempt to bake those contextual factors into a single number by comparing a player’s actual possession rate to what we’d expect of an average NHL player at his position if placed in the same situations.1This is similar in theory to the way researchers have sometimes attempted to measure individual fielding in baseball, under which a defender’s actual plays made in the field are compared with expected play counts based on balls in play sent in his direction.You might think there’d be a decent amount of crossover between conventional numbers and these new possession-based advanced stats, but the correlation is practically nonexistent. Rescaling PSAR against an average baseline to make an apples-to-apples comparison, I found essentially no relationship with Burtch’s dCorsi Impact (which gives players more credit for maintaining strong possession rates relative to average in greater amounts of ice time) this season:Take Cole again. Despite his solid counting stats and a very good point share tally, Dallas’s possession rate when Cole was on the ice was actually lower than what would be expected from an average player in the same situations with the same teammates and opponents. Or take FiveThirtyEight favorite Jaromir Jagr, whose relatively down conventional stats belie a player still capable of driving play with the proverbial skills that don’t show up in the box score.They’re not alone among the bigger-name deadline acquisitions. Much was made when the Arizona Coyotes shipped away center Antoine Vermette and defenseman Keith Yandle. Both players were solid PSAR contributors for Arizona this season but also ranked among the least valuable dCorsi players at their respective positions.Meanwhile, Zbynek Michalek, another former Coyote, boasted extremely unimpressive counting numbers (8 points and a -6 rating in 53 games) even by the standards of his position but ranks as one of the best defensemen in hockey according to dCorsi Impact.In case it wasn’t clear by now, all this goes to show that it’s nearly impossible to guess whether a player is a possession star or scrub based on his conventional numbers. As is the case with most of these new-school-versus-old-school metric battles to recently crop up across almost all sports, a player’s true value probably lies somewhere in between. But in hockey, that fact just underscores how little we still know about who’s helping and hurting their teams. read more

Geno Smith Wasnt Better Than His Backup

In the most surreal bit of sports news to hit Tuesday’s wires, Geno Smith, the incumbent starting quarterback for the New York Jets, is going to miss six to 10 weeks with an injury. And it wasn’t just any kind of injury; it was the kind you get when a teammate punches you and breaks your jaw.According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, now-cut linebacker IK Enemkpali slugged Smith because he failed to reimburse Enemkpali for a $600 plane ticket. Jets fans — at least, Jets fans in the FiveThirtyEight office — rejoiced. But coming into the preseason, this Jets team showed at least a vague sense of promise. Are the Jets really better off without Smith? Last year, New York went 4-12 (3-10 under Smith) with one of the NFL’s worst passing offenses, and Smith was pretty bad for the second straight season. In fact, his career has gotten off to one of the worst starts of any QB since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger. Although Hall of Famers Troy Aikman and Terry Bradshaw kicked off their careers with equally bad passing efficiency numbers, it’s far more likely that Smith is a talent on par with, say, Kyle Boller than that he’s harboring hidden star potential.And while Smith will be 25 this season, an age at which QBs still show a decent amount of improvement, the typical aging curve wouldn’t even carry Smith to league-average status at his peak.Meanwhile, the Jets’ backup quarterback isn’t a bad one. Longtime Buffalo Bills starter Ryan Fitzpatrick occupied the seat behind Smith and — statistically speaking — he’s probably a better QB than the man slated for the huddle, at least in the short term. Over the past two seasons (when he was with the Houston Texans and the Tennessee Titans), Fitzpatrick’s Total QBR1ESPN’s play-by-play-based measurement of quarterbacking performance, which grades on a 0-100 scale. of 54.1 was better than Smith’s 41.2 mark during that span, and Fitzpatrick’s cumulative ProFootballFocus grade of +11.3 vastly outpaced Smith’s total of -37.3. By the numbers, the Jets are better off with the glass-jawed Smith out of the game, holding a clipboard on the sidelines.Of course, these kinds of assessments always come with the caveat that individual football statistics are obscured by countless interactions, coaching decisions and other contextual factors. And the Jets did add a good receiver over the offseason, Brandon Marshall, so it’s possible Smith would have improved significantly in 2015 had he not run afoul of Enemkpali’s fist. But Jets fans shouldn’t worry too much about what might have been: The team’s offense will probably be better with Fitzpatrick under center than it would have been with Smith. read more

The Weaknesses Of The Four Remaining NFL Playoffs Teams

The NFL’s conference championship weekend is finally here. In the video above, FiveThirtyEight’s Neil Paine breaks down the two matchups. Share on Facebook

The NHL Has Accomplished Its Goals

If you’ve been paying attention to the 2017-18 NHL season, you may have noticed something: There is no shortage of goals. We’re more than a third of the way through the season, and scores are, on average, the highest they’ve been since 2005-06. Through Sunday, there have already been 31 games settled in regulation in which the teams combined for double-digit goals. A year ago there were only 45 such games across the whole season. We’re still a long way away from the 1980s golden era of goals, but for a league that’s been repeatedly criticized for being too low-scoring, this sudden glut can only be read as a positive development.It’s difficult to point to just one cause for the scoring uptick. The league instituted a number of rule changes at the beginning of the season,1The NHL did something similar after the lockout of 2004-05, introducing a sweeping array of rule changes with the express purpose of increasing goal scoring. and those changes have contributed to an increase in power play opportunities — teams are averaging 3.3 power play opportunities per game so far this season, the highest mark in five years.2Those changes also include a crackdown on slashing and a conservative interpretation of what a center can and cannot do at the faceoff dot: If a center does not stand squarely facing his opponent’s side of the rink, he is subject to being thrown out of the dot. If that happens consecutively to centers from the same team, that team will be subject to a bench minor. The league wants to see less stick work and less cheating on the faceoff dots. And it’s evident the league wasn’t kidding about cracking down on slashing — through Sunday, officials had doled out 623 penalties for slashing. That number was just 791 for all of last season. Slashing0.641.22+0.58 Hooking1.030.97-0.07 Holding0.640.67+0.03 The box is getting crowdedMinor penalties per NHL game over the past two seasons Roughing0.840.67-0.18 More power play opportunities translate to more odd man advantages, which translate to more shots on net per game: Teams are surrendering more shots per game (31.6) than they have in the past three decades. The math is simple: more shots on goal equals more pucks finding the twine.And even though goals against averages are up across the league — the current mark of 2.76 is the highest it’s been in a decade — the goaltenders cannot be blamed for the league’s recent scoring outburst. Among qualifying goalies,3We looked at goalies who’ve played at least 200 minutes. the league average save percentage (92.18) is slightly higher than the league average expected save percentage (92.13), which is the save percentage an average goalie should post given the quality of shots faced.This suggests that goalies are actually outperforming expectations. During the 2016-17 season, goalies stopped fewer pucks than the data suggested they should have stopped (an actual save percentage of 91.94 versus an expected save percentage of 92.17), and yet goals per game totals remained roughly in line with numbers from the preceding nine seasons.Goalies in 2017-18 are also outperforming their peers from the previous year on high danger shots (unblocked shots with an expected scoring percentage of 9 or greater); this year’s cohort is stopping 79.4 percent of shots considered dangerous, while last year’s stopped just 78.5 percent of those shots.Even though teams are converting their power plays with effectively the same efficiency they did in 2016-17, they’re getting more of those man advantage looks, and likely the rule changes — and not poor goalie play4Goalies are always getting blamed; we need to stop blaming those poor goalies. — offer the truest explanation for the higher-scoring brand of hockey being played in the NHL at the moment.And let’s not forget the cadre of young offensive talent that has flooded the NHL in the past several seasons: Last year, six of the top dozen goal scorers were 25 years old or younger. And the top point getter (Connor McDavid) was just 20. All of these very young men are already sharing the leaderboards with future Hall of Famers like Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin, who are still both in the primes of their careers. This overlap of generational talent could be contributing to all the scoring, too.To be sure, no one in the league office of the NHL is losing sleep over this. More scoring is good news for a league that has been plagued by a spate of absurd calls from pundits to not only tweak the rules of the game, but to change the shape of it too. Reprimanding centers for lining up at the dots incorrectly? Fine, we can all live with that. But making the nets bigger? That’s downright sacrilege. Thanks to the relatively high-scoring climate of the present-day NHL, maybe we can put that tired argument to bed once and for all. Interference0.640.71+0.08 Goalie interference0.100.09-0.01 High stick0.690.58-0.10 Tripping1.081.20+0.12 Holding stick0.110.07-0.03 Penalty2016-172017-18Difference All minors6.657.09+0.44 Cross checking0.300.31+0.01 Through Dec. 17. Differences may not add up because of rounding.Source: ESPN read more

Khris Davis Isnt Batting 247 😱

Past 572 at bats, .247 becomes possible at three of every four numbers. So last year’s quest got quite a bit easier on Sept. 29 when Davis hit at-bat number 572, a career high. The odds of Davis ending the past four seasons with a .247 batting average even with the perfect number of hits are still just 9.4 percent.Put another way: Davis finished 2018 with 576 at- bats. If he had gone to the plate just one more time and gotten a hit, he would have finished with a .248 average. If he had made an out, he would have been at .246.1A walk would have left it the same, of course. Davis was pulled in the sixth inning of the season’s final game, by the way.The chase for .247 isn’t impossible, but it is mathematically very unlikely. Of course, it was also unlikely the past four seasons. The powers of rounding and opposing pitchers haven’t stopped Davis before. We believe in you, Khris.Check out our latest MLB predictions. The most amazing active streak in baseball might be the most unlikely streak in history.I’m talking, of course, about Khris Davis’s batting average. Davis has hit exactly (or, more precisely, rounded to) .247 for not one, not two, not even three but four straight seasons, from 2015 through 2018.This year appears to be different. Davis is currently hitting .230, and while there’s still a long way to go this season, .230 is not close to .247. Baseball appears to be broken.Assuming he stays healthy the rest of the year and plays in roughly the same amount that he did in 2018, Davis needs to hit .282 for the rest of the year to continue the streak. That’s certainly not impossible.Davis also should be hitting closer to .247 based on some of his advanced metrics: He has a higher average than he did last year on balls in play (.274 to .261) and a lower strikeout rate (26.3 percent to 26.8 percent). With those components improving, we’d expect Davis to have a better batting average. Statcast metrics tell a similar story. Davis is seeing roughly the same pitches to previous seasons and swinging and making contact about as often. The difference isn’t seeing better pitchers.One clear difference with Davis — in addition to his inexplicably non-.247 average — seems to be his power. Davis has hit just 17 home runs in 2019. He finished last year with 48, and at this point in the year he had hit 32.Likewise, his hard-hit rate and average launch angle have plummeted. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that a pair of injuries may be limiting him, and Davis said he’s been choking up, possibly leading to weaker hits.Some of the difference, as is often the case in baseball, is luck. Davis has made 24 outs this year on balls in play with an expected hit probability (based on launch angle and exit velocity) of over 50 percent. This particular lineout had a .797 expected batting average, or a nearly 80 percent chance of landing for a hit:Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/9aa1f874-c4f7-4697-a17a-223828fbd499.mp400:0000:0000:17Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Overall, according to Statcast, Davis has an expected batting average of .242 based on all his batted balls. With slightly better luck, Davis could be right where he’s been the last four years.It’s worth remembering how fickle batting average can be. The difference between Davis’s batting average from this year and last year is just six missing hits, which says a lot more about batting average than it does Khris Davis. It also suggests that the decline in homers alone might be keeping him out of .247 range.To reach the fabled average, Davis needs a hot finish to the season — and, fortunately, he’s had even better hot streaks before in his career. Last year, from June 29 to Aug. 23, he hit .316 in 177 at-bats with 19 home runs over 46 games. Davis will have about as many at-bats for the rest of the year, and he doesn’t need as many hits. If the power comes back, it’s easy to imagine a similar stretch.Besides opposing pitchers, another enemy threatens Davis’s batting average streak: rounding.Let’s say Davis finishes the season with 520 at-bats, a reasonable number based on his playing time. If he has 128 hits in those at-bats, his average rounds to .246. With one more hit, though, it would increase to .248. There’s a decent chance that Davis has no mathematical chance of repeating his .247 average.The odds of having a number of at-bats for which a .247 average is impossible are close to 50-50. If Davis finishes with a number of at-bats between 500 and 571 that is two or three more than a multiple of four, he can hit .247. Otherwise, he cannot. read more

By the numbers Ohio State rolls Penn State as Barrett takes control

OSU redshirt sophomore QB J.T. Barrett (16) stiff arms Penn State redshirt sophomore defensive end Garrett Sickels (90) during a game at Ohio Stadium on Oct. 17. OSU won, 38-10. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead / Photo EditorOn Saturday morning, the Big Ten East’s four heavyweights (Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Penn State) were all undefeated in conference play and a combined 22-2 on the season (those two losses were against currently undefeated teams in Utah and Temple). After a stunning victory by Michigan State and an excellent performance by OSU, the true top dogs of the division have become just a little more clear.With the season already halfway done, OSU coach Urban Meyer still seems no closer to deciding on which quarterback will take the reins to the offense than he did during the entire offseason. After OSU’s most dominant performance of the season, however, it doesn’t seem to matter. At least not yet.Despite once again falling behind early and failing to score in the first quarter, the OSU offense stepped on the gas in the second and put up 21 unanswered points against a stout Penn State defense en route to a 38-10 blowout win.Ever since Meyer began to phase J.T. Barrett into the game more last week, the redshirt sophomore quarterback has been electric, leading the Buckeye offense to 10 touchdowns and a field goal in 11 red zone appearances. Barrett finished the game completing all four of his passes for 30 yards and two touchdowns to go along with 102 yards and two more touchdowns on 11 carries on the ground.Redshirt junior Cardale Jones ended the game 9-of-15 passing for 84 yards, his lowest yardage total for the season. Meanwhile, junior running back Ezekiel Elliott, a stalwart for the Buckeye offense, pounded away 153 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries. In total, OSU managed to gain 429 yards and 25 first downs against one of the top defenses in the nation.Penn State junior quarterback Christian Hackenberg, claimed by some to be the highest-rated quarterback for next year’s NFL draft, was ineffective all night long, finishing the night 7-of-13 passing for 120 yards. However, true freshman running back Saquon Barkley looked impressive for the Nittany Lions as he gashed the Buckeye defense for 194 yards on 26 carries after missing the previous two games for Penn State.Penn State will host a struggling Maryland team next week as it fights to become bowl eligible, while OSU will travel to Rutgers in search of its nation-leading 21st straight victory. By the numbers:4: OSU’s current win streak against Penn State, its longest in the history of the programs.17-13: The all-time record between Penn State and OSU, favoring the Buckeyes.1: The amount of losses OSU has suffered against Big Ten competition at night in Ohio Stadium. The team that beat them? Penn State in 2008 by a score of 13-6.23: The number of consecutive games in which redshirt junior wide receiver Michael Thomas has caught a pass for the Buckeyes. He currently leads the team with 433 yards and 30 receptions.108,423: The number of fans crammed inside the ‘Shoe last night, the second-largest crowd in history to watch the Buckeyes play.9: After last night, Elliott became the ninth running back in OSU history to rush for 3,000-plus career yards. He currently has 3,028 yards to his name.38: Under current coach James Franklin, Penn State prides itself on having a great defense.  The 38 points put up by the Buckeyes were the most given up by Penn State in a game since 2013, when the Nittany Lions also played in Columbus and got embarrassed 63-14. 3: Since 2010, Penn State has allowed its opponents to rush for more than 300 yards in a game only three times. All three times, it was against the Buckeyes inside Ohio Stadium. read more

Mens basketball Keita BatesDiops injury could have been worse now ahead of

Sophomore forward Keita Bates-Diop talks to the media on Feb. 23 for the first time since his surgery on his left shin. Credit: Jacob Myers | Assistant Sports EditorNot much has gone right for the Ohio State men’s basketball team this year, making it all the more difficult for sophomore forward Keita Bates-Diop as he goes through rehabilitation after surgery on his left shin.The Buckeyes lost arguably their most dynamic player following a 76-75 loss to Purdue on Jan. 5. Bates-Diop sat out that game and coach Thad Matta informed the media in the postgame press conference that the forward would redshirt and be out for the year. Since that game, Bates-Diop has had surgery and his recovery is ahead of schedule.But the injury could have been devastating.“It was getting close to what could’ve been a compound fracture, which — Kevin Ware, Paul George — that’s what would’ve happened,” Bates-Diop said. “Don’t know when it would’ve happened, but if I would’ve kept playing, it was a possibility. It was already decided I wasn’t playing, but when they said that, there was no chance I was coming back.”The 6-foot-7 forward from Normal, Illinois, had been dealing with the injury since the summer when another player made hard contact with his shin. He came back and still wasn’t 100 percent, so the team mandated that he receive X-rays. “(The coaches) could tell something was wrong,” Bates-Diop said. “I wasn’t playing like myself. I was playing at a high level in the summer, until I did something wrong.” Bates-Diop then suffered a right ankle injury against Providence on Nov. 11. He missed five games with that injury, but it wasn’t until December that his shin began bothering him again. Bates-Diop recalled stopping abruptly versus Youngstown State on Dec. 20 when he felt a pain shoot through his leg. From then on, his injury didn’t progress any and he was shut down for the season.Through the season Bates-Diop said he was near full health. He admitted on Thursday that wasn’t the case.“I told you guys that I was close to being 100 percent. I was not,” he said. “I lied. I was never 100 percent. I was never close.”Bates-Diop said that he had a rod placed in his left leg from just below the kneecap down to just above the ankle. He has two screws in his leg, one in each spot to anchor the rod. He said that the one near his ankle will likely be taken out. He was supposed to be on crutches for two to three weeks but was only on them for one week.As far as conditioning and lifting is concerned, Bates-Diop is working on upper-body strength, so by the time summer rolls around he can jump into skill drills.On top of all that, two weeks ago, Bates-Diop’s brother collapsed during practice and was transported to the hospital, causing the Buckeye to head home. His brother was discharged from the hospital days later and Bates-Diop said his brother returned to school Thursday for the first time.While that was going on, OSU has fallen to 15-13 and 5-10 in the Big Ten before it plays No. 16 Wisconsin on Thursday night. Bates-Diop said one of the most difficult aspects of his injury is knowing he can’t contribute to a team who’s struggling mightily. “It’s been very hard,” he said. “Just dealing with everything I’ve been personally through and then the team. It’s been a rough few months … since New Years.”Bates-Diop was averaging 9.7 points and 5.2 rebounds before the injury. He said that he has taken a new role on the sidelines and has a new perspective outside the game that other players don’t have — something he’s hoping to carry over to next year.“I think mental preparation toward the game. I was playing at a high level. I can get that back,” he said. “But looking from the outside in, now I can change my mentality from the game. All that stuff I can teach these guys, especially the younger guys on what to do and what not to do.” read more

Mens basketball Big Ten unveils 201718 conference schedule

The Big Ten Conference released the 2017-18 men’s basketball conference schedule, giving Ohio State first-year coach Chris Holtmann his first look at a packed calendar, which features two games in December and home-and-homes with Michigan and Indiana.The Big Ten was forced to schedule two conference games in early December due to the conference tournament being played at Madison Square Garden in New York, the week before the NCAA Tournament is unveiled in March. Traditionally, the Big Ten tournament has been the final conference tournament to end before the NCAA selection show.Ohio State will open Big Ten play with a trip to Madison, Wisconsin, on Dec. 2 for its only date with the Badgers, which follows the Phil Knight Invitational in Oregon and the Big Ten/ACC Challenge game against Clemson. Then the Buckeyes play at home two days later versus Michigan.Holtmann and his team will play one game at home against Michigan State (Jan. 7), Maryland (Jan. 11), Nebraska (Jan. 22) and Illinois (Feb. 4), and they will play one game on the road against Wisconsin, Northwestern (Jan. 17), Minnesota (Jan. 20) and Purdue (Feb. 7).Ohio State’s conference opponents it will face twice are Michigan, Indiana, Rutgers, Penn State and Iowa.The Buckeyes have three consecutive road games from Jan. 14 to Jan. 20 followed by a four-game home stand from Jan. 22 to Feb. 4. Ohio State will end the season at Indiana, Holtmann’s third away game in four games. Sun. Nov. 5vs. Wooster (exhibition)Columbus Sat. Dec. 16vs. Appalachian StateColumbus Sun. Nov. 19vs. NortheasternColumbus Sat. Jan. 20vs. Minnesota  (Super Saturday)New York (Madison Square Garden) Thu. Jan. 25vs. Penn StateColumbus Thu. Nov. 23vs. Gonzaga (PK 80)Portland, Oregon Sun. Jan. 7vs. Michigan StateColumbus Mon. Jan. 22vs. NebraskaColumbus Sun. Feb. 18at MichiganAnn Arbor, Michigan Sat. Feb. 10vs. IowaColumbus Mon. Dec. 4vs. MichiganColumbus Tue. Feb. 20vs. RutgersColumbus Fri. Nov. 24Florida/Stanford (PK 80)Portland, Oregon Tue. Jan. 30vs. IndianaColumbus Sat. Dec. 23vs. North Carolina (CBSSports Classic)New Orleans Thu. Jan. 11vs. MarylandColumbus Wed. Feb. 7at PurdueWest Lafayette, Indiana Tue. Dec. 19vs. The CitadelColumbus Sat. Dec. 30vs. Miami (OH)Columbus Sun. Jan. 14at RutgersPiscataway, New Jersey Fri. Feb. 23at IndianaBloomington, Indiana Sun. Nov. 12vs. Radford Columbus Sun. Nov. 26TBA (PK 80)Portland, Oregon Sat. Dec. 2at WisconsinMadison, Wisconsin Sat. Dec. 9vs. William & MaryColumbus Sun. Feb. 4vs. IllinoisColumbus Thu. Jan. 4at IowaIowa City, Iowa Fri. Nov. 10vs. Robert MorrisColumbus Wed. Jan. 17at NorthwesternRosemont, Illinois (Allstate Arena) Thu. Feb. 15at Penn StateUniversity Park, Pennsylvania  Wed. Nov. 29vs. Clemson (Big Ten/ACC Challenge)Columbus Thu. Nov. 16vs. Texas Southern Columbus read more

Gallery Mens Hockey vs Michigan State

Members of the men’s hockey team huddle up prior to the start of game one during Ohio State’s hockey game vs. Michigan State on March 1. Ohio State won 5-1. Credit: Nick Hudak | For The Lantern The Ohio State Men’s Ice Hockey team took on Michigan State on March 1 and March 2 at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus. Ohio State won game one 5-1 but lost game two 3-2. Photos by Nick Hudak and Casey Cascaldo.

Pigs can be pessimists scientists find

first_imgPro-active pigs were willing to see whether there was a positive outcome in the mystery bowl.Dr Lisa Collins, from the University of Lincoln, and colleagues wrote: “Reactive pigs in the less enriched environment were more pessimistic and those in the more enriched environment more optimistic.”These results suggest that judgment in non-human animals is similar to humans, incorporating aspects of stable personality traits and more transient mood states”.The researchers wrote in the abstract of the paper that it is the first time cognitive bias has been investigated in non-human animals. Their nature was tested by offering two food bowls at opposite sides of the room, one filled with sugar-coated chocolate sweets and the other filled with disappointing coffee beans.Optimistic pigs were likely to check a third bowl, which was either filled with coffee beans or sweets.Pessimistic pigs would not even bother checking whether it was full of sweets or not.Pigs with less space and straw were more likely to be moody and pessimistic, and less likely to snuffle about for sweets.A bad mood in a pig would mean the animal was more inclined to expect a negative outcome from the bowl; coffee beans instead of sweets. Scientists have found that pigs can be optimists or pessimists, just like humans.In a new study by the University of Lincoln, published in Biology Letters, it was found that some pigs are go-getters, whereas others are moody and see the glass as half-empty.Researchers tested 36 domestic pigs, some of which were given roomy, comfortable living space with extra layers of deep straw. These results suggest that judgment in non-human animals is similar to humans, incorporating aspects of stable personality traits and more transient mood statesDr Lisa Collins Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

Travellers leave bath tubs fridges and mattresses behind among 250 tonnes of

first_imgThe gates at the entrance to the site have now been padlocked, with a skip behind them holding some of the waste.  Pictures of the scene show the extent of the fly-tipping, with rubbish left all over the field from planks of wood to old furniture. The group of local residents who co-own the land have been told it will cost in the region of £100,000 to clear up the site. Contractors estimate there are 250 tonnes of waste on the land. Bath tubs, fridges and mattresses were left strewn on a private field by travellers after they were evicted.The debris was among an estimated 250 tonnes of waste the group left behind them when they were forced out of the site in Bromley, south east London. They had only been in the area for two weeks. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Fly-tipping in Bromley Credit:Grant Falvey /LNP Credit:Grant Falvey/LNP Fly-tipping  Fly-tipping The field where they set up camp is located near Bickley Manor and Blackbrook Lane. Local police posted a picture of the mess on Twitter, saying: “The travellers have moved on from the site. Sadly they didn’t take their rubbish with them #flytipping.” Credit:Grant Falvey /LNP Fly-tipping Credit:Grant Falvey /LNP The local council is investigating the fly-tipping.  The travellers’ arrival prompted anger from residents, who contacted the council to complain.One local told the New Shopper that people in the area were “up in arms” when the group arrived and started amassing rubbish. last_img read more

David Bowie statue vandalised within 24 hours of unveiling

first_imgThe newly unveiled statue of David Bowie being cleaned after being sprayed with paintCredit:Paul Grover The newly unveiled statue of David Bowie being cleaned after being sprayed with paint Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A statue of singer David Bowie was vandalised only 24 hours after it went on show.Hundreds of people were at the unveiling of the bronze sculpture in Market Square in Aylesbury, Bucks on Sunday.However, overnight vandals had sprayed it with graffiti.On the pavement in front of the statue, someone has sprayed the words “Feed the homeless first”.Groups of volunteers turned up on Tuesday with buckets of soapy water to clean the statue.The word-renowned singer, who died in January 2016, made his debut as Ziggy Stardust at Friars music club in the Buckinghamshire town. Money for the £100,000 sculpture was raised by crowdfunding organised by music promoter David Stopps.last_img read more

Horsetrekking centre shuts because riders were too overweight

The scheme which involved monitoring six horses while they trotted and cantered with four people of different weights, found there was a ‘substantial impact’ on gait and behaviour when the rider was too heavy.Dr Sue Dyson, head of clinical orthopaedics at the Animal Health Trust’s Centre for Equine Studies, who led the study said: “While all the horses finished the study moving as well as when they started, the results showed a substantial temporary effect of rider weight as a proportion of horse weight. “The results do not mean that heavy riders should not ride but suggest that if they do they should ride a horse of appropriate size and fitness, with a saddle that is correctly fitted for both horse and rider.”Now Mrs Wilkinson, who owns the farm with her husband Darren, said they plan to concentrate on the farming and livery side of the business.  She said that the decision to stop trekking was “very sad” as the farm has provided trekking to many people over the years. “It has given numerous happy memories to people and for many their first ever experience of being near and riding a horse,” she added.“We have no doubt that it will be very sadly missed. “Running a trekking centre takes its toll emotionally due to the risk and physically as it’s seven days a week through the summer and then the winter.”Despite the news, the yard is set to benefit with summer clinics, picnic rides and demonstrations to increase.The Babeny Riding Club will also be reformed and a packed agenda of activities will be created.“We are in the middle of Dartmoor with fantastic riding, and we’re also very lucky to have an all-weather arena so the set up is perfect for our liveries and I’m really looking forward to spending more time with my own horses taking part in clinics, rides and competing,” said Mrs Wilkinson. The farm which has been is business for 35 years currently has a rider weight limit of 16 stone.Experts from the British Equestrian Federation (BEF) and World Horse Welfare carried out their study after members voiced concerns that horses were being damaged by increasingly heavy riders.  The farm now plans to concentrate on the farming and livery side of the businessCredit:SWNS The farm now plans to concentrate on the farming and livery side of the business Experts have said that it is important to match the riders to the horses Overweight horse riders have caused a trekking centre at a Dartmoor farm to close because the animals cannot carry them, its owners have revealed. The trekking centre at Babeny Farm at Poundsgate, Devon will cease trading on September 2 after the owner revealed it wasn’t fair to place heavy riders on horses. The decision for the farm to halt its trekking comes just two months after a pilot study found that if a rider is excessively heavy for a horse it can have a negative impact on the performance of the animal.Farm owner Dee Dee Wilkinson said the decision to stop the trekking was partly due to an increase in heavier riders as well as high insurance costs and other personal reasons. “The horses are at an age where they need replacing and getting those good replacements can be difficult,” she said.“We are finding increasingly that people are getting heavier, so we are unable to let them ride as it isn’t fair on the horses.” Experts have said that it is important to match the riders to the horsesCredit:SWNS Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Chaos at Pembrokeshire County Show as loose horse injures eight

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Mr Davies also paid tribute to members of the public attending the show who reacted to the accident in a calm and helpful manner and who rendered valuable assistance.He added that the show would continue as planned tomorrow (Thursday, 16th August).Hannah Marie Jones, who was at the scene said: “Six people have been injured, some seriously after a loose horse galloped down the main thoroughfare at the County Show.”The Air Ambulance is at the scene along with police, local ambulances and St Johns. The area has been cordoned off and the horse has been captured.”A statement from the Pembrokeshire Show said: “We can confirm that there has been an incident at the Pembrokeshire County Show today. We are currently working with all the emergency services who are dealing with the situation. Six casualties are being assessed by Welsh Ambulance Services.” Police attend the incident in WithybushCredit:Wales News Service He said there would be a full review into the circumstances surrounding the accident. An air ambulance arrived at the scene at the Pembrokeshire County ShowCredit:WALES NEWS SERVICE “There are several people now being treated by medics, some were still scattered on the ground with what seemed to be head injuries.”An air ambulance landed here about 10 minutes ago and there are a few people being treated with oxygen masks.” A 12-year-old boy and 83-year-old man are among eight people injured by a runaway horse at the Pembrokeshire County Show.The Air Ambulance, police officers and local ambulance services are at the scene, in Withybush, west Wales, and five people have been taken to hospital.The casualties  were hurt when the show horse threw its rider and bolted out onto a busy walkway full of spectators.A spokesman for the Pembrokeshire Agricultural Society said: “A horse taking part in a competition – on the second day of the Pembrokeshire Show – threw its rider and jumped a fence into the crowd.”As a result there were eight casualties. We can confirm that there has been an incident at the Pembrokeshire County Show today. We are currently working with all the emergency services who are dealing with the situation. Six casualties are being assessed by Welsh Ambulance Services.— Pembrokeshire Show (@pembscountyshow) August 15, 2018 “Five people were taken to hospital including a 12-year-old boy and an 83-year-male. None of the injuries are believed to be life-threatening.”Medical crews on duty at the Withybush showground helped treat the injured along with other members of the emergency services. An Air Ambulance attended the scene but was not required.The Chairman of the Pembrokeshire Agricultural Society’s Trustees, Mr Mike Davies, said: “At the moment our thoughts are with those who were injured.”We also want to thank the emergency services who were on the scene very quickly and assisted the injured.” Jonathan Twigg, who was at the show, told the BBC the horse bolted through the crowds.”A horse, presumably a show jumping horse seemed to break free from the area it was being held and just went on a rampage,” he said.”It bolted up the avenue through the crowds here and took maybe a dozen people out on the way as it just ran straight into them. Air Ambulance at the scene Police at the scene read more

Boy stabbed at tube station in Londons second teenage knife death in

Police at the scene in south London Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Police at the scene in south LondonCredit: David Wilcock/PA Charity director Robin Pritchard said he moved through a crowd and saw the victim lying in a pool of blood while someone provided CPR.The 47-year-old told the Press Association: “I saw the guy on the floor, a pool of blood like he’d been stabbed in the stomach, his clothes were soaked.”It was strangely calm and quiet. I think everyone was in shock. Lots of kids there from the local college.”All I really registered were grey tracksuit bottoms which were soaked with a pool of blood coming from his waist like he’d been stabbed in the stomach.” A 17-year-old boy has died after being stabbed outside a Tube station, becoming the second teenager to be fatally knifed in London within 24 hours.It comes the day after a 15-year-old, named by police as Jay Hughes, was stabbed to death in Bellingham, south east London.The killing marks the 115th homicide in the capital so far this year, of which 19 victims have been teenagers.Officers were called to Clapham South Tube Station in south west London at 4.35pm on Friday, where they found the teenager suffering from a stab wound.He was taken to a south London hospital, where he died less than an hour later, the Metropolitan Police said. Another witness, who did not want to be named, said he saw “a bunch of guys” shouting and appearing agitated, with one carrying a large knife.He added that the area is usually noisy after students leave nearby Saint Francis Xavier College.He said: “I had no idea it was different to any other time the students get a bit noisy, until I saw the knife as I was literally passing them.”Officers are in the process of informing the victim’s family, although formal identification has yet to take place.No arrests have been made so far and inquiries continue.Surrounding roads and the Tube station have been closed with police remaining on scene.A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “Police were called at approximately 16:35hrs on Friday, 2 November to reports of a stabbing outside Clapham South Tube Station.”A 17-year-old male was found suffering from a stab wound. He was taken to a south London hospital where he died a short while later.”Police are in the process of informing his next of kin.”Formal identification has not yet taken place. A post-mortem examination will be held in due course.” read more

Stephen Lawrence murder suspect pleads guilty over £4m drugsmuggling plot

Jamie Acourt has previous convictions for possession of cannabis and theft, and has spent time in a young offenders institute, but this is the first time he is set to face a custodial sentence.Following the Lawrence murder and before he fled to Spain, he lived a life of outward respectability at a smart terraced home with his partner in Sidcup.He drove a smart black Mercedes and his girlfriend is a director of a successful children’s clothing company affording them all the trappings of a well-heeled middle class lifestyle. It followed a delinquent childhood that saw him excluded from schools following violent incidents.He will be sentenced for the drugs charge on Friday. His brother had been sentenced to six years and three months’ imprisonment in February last year over the same conspiracy.Jailing him, judge Recorder Paul Clements  said the plot would “have kept the people of the Newcastle area in spliffs for many a long day”.It involved dozens of 600-mile round trips from London to South Shields, driving drugs up and bringing back cash. Knight was arrested in 1993 but charges were later dropped and a bid to prosecute him privately in 1996 failed. He denies any involvement. Gary Dobson and David Norris were convicted of murder in 2012 and jailed for life. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Stephen Lawrence who was murdered in a racially motivated attack while waiting for a bus in Eltham in 1993 Detective Chief Inspector Mark Bedford of the Met’s Organised Crime Command, said the  conviction “is the culmination of several years’ of complex investigation by Met detectives”.He said: “Diligent policing work has enabled the team to build a case which has disbanded a drugs network valued around £4 million.Their tenacity has ensured that six members of the drugs network have now faced justice.”A total of seven men have now been convicted or found guilty over the conspiracy.They include the stepfather of Acourt’s partner, Lee Birks, 57, of Orpington, south-east London, and Neil Acourt’s 65-year-old father-in-law Jack Vose, of Bexley, south-east London.In 2012, Gary Dobson and David Norris were convicted at the Old Bailey of murdering Mr Lawrence and jailed for life.Both Acourts were arrested shortly after the murder but neither were convicted. Twenty-five years after he was named as a suspect in the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence, Jamie Acourt is a lengthy facing jail term.Acourt, 42, from Eltham, south-east London, pleaded guilty to drug offences at Kingston Crown Court on Thursday after admitting his role as a kingpin in a two-year conspiracy to sell £4m of cannabis.His 43-year-old brother Neil Acourt has already been jailed for more than six years over the hashish scheme.But, Jamie Acourt had spent more than two years on the run until his arrest in May, during which he lived in Spain under the alias “Simon Alfonzo”.Prosecutors believe both were ringleaders and that they enlisted family members to the scheme that saw drugs transported between London and South Shields, Tyne and Wear.Both men were arrested after the racist stabbing of 18-year-old Stephen Lawrence by a gang of five white men in Eltham in 1993, but have always denied involvement.Those who knew Jamie Acourt at the time of the murder remember a violent and aggressive racist who had earned a fearsome reputation by his mid teens.Jamie Acourt’s conviction for drug offences means that Luke Knight is the only one of the original five suspects in the Lawrence murder who is not behind bars. Gary Dobson (left) and David Norris who were convicted under joint enterprise in 2012 for the 1993 murder of Stephen Lawrence, who was stabbed to death by a gang in a racially motivated murder in Eltham, south-east London, when he was 18 Gary Dobson (left) and David Norris who were convicted under joint enterprise in 2012 for the 1993 murder of Stephen Lawrence, who was stabbed to death by a gang in a racially motivated murder in Eltham, south-east London, when he was 18Credit:PA Jurors were earlier told of Jamie Acourt’s historic allegation and warned they should consider him solely on the trial’s evidence.If the judge found they would be unable to do so, or they if they were serving or retired Metropolitan Police officers, they would have been excluded from the jury.Jamie Acourt, appearing in court wearing a man bun and a beard, previously denied the conspiracy to supply a Class B drug between January 2014 and February 2016, but changed his plea following the end of the prosecution’s case opening.The basis of his plea was that it was agreed with the prosecution he was involved in the conspiracy to supply between January 1 2014 and May 2 2015 only.Acourt fled the country after police raided a home he lived in with his partner and their two children in Bexley, south-east London, in February 2016.He was arrested by armed officers as he left a gym in Barcelona on May 4 2018 and extradited back to Britain. Stephen Lawrence who was murdered in a racially motivated attack while waiting for a bus in Eltham in 1993Credit:PA read more

Kylie Jenner becomes worlds youngest selfmade billionaire on back of makeup empire

Kylie Jenner has become the youngest self-made billionaire at the age of 21, according to Forbes, after using her Instagram influence to build a lucrative make-up empire.The make-up entrepreneur and reality television star has overtaken Mark Zuckerberg, who became the youngest self-made billionaire aged 23 in 2006.Ms Jenner, the half-sister of Kim Kardashian, has used her 128m followers on Instagram as a customer base, as many follow her for fashion and make-up tips.The entrepreneur owns 100 per cent of Kylie Cosmetics, the three-year-old beauty business that did an estimated $360 million in sales last year, and most of her sales are done online. Much of it is driven through social media.She has attributed her rise up the rich list to her vast and dedicated following, telling Forbes: “It’s the power of social media.“I had such a strong reach before I was able to start anything.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Recent sponsored posts show the young woman posing with vitamins promising glossy hair, and “detox” tea, which is said to give the user a flat stomach.  Jenner was ranked at number 2,057 out of 2,153 on this year’s list. Of the total, 1,450 members are self-made.The number of billionaires in the world is decreasing, according to the list, with 2,153 billionaires on the 2019 list, down from 2,208 in 2018. The total combined net worth of this year’s billionaires is $8.7 trillion, down from $9.1 trillion in 2018.For the second year running, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos topped the list with a net worth of £131bn, with Bill Gates, who previously held the top position for a record amount of time, second with £96.5bn. Her first foray into the cosmetics industry was through selling her lip kits, promising her followers that they could replicate her famous pout. Now, she sells eyeshadows and eyeliners, and is broadening her range later this year.The star also makes what is rumoured to be tens of thousands of pounds through Instagram influencing, being paid by companies to endorse their products. read more

Great British Bake Off youngest contestants in shows history turn to mum

Jamie, 20 Jamie said he believed his grandmother would be happy he had adopted her recipe for simnel cake, saying: “I think she’s pleased I’m using it, I don’t know.”This week’s star baker Michelle used a family recipe for bara brith, while 28-year-old shop assistant Steph produced a version perfected by her late great-grandmother Rosie.  Half of the GBBO bakers are in their 20s this yeara Henry, 20 Dan, 33 Dan, 33Credit:GBBO Half of the GBBO bakers are in their 20s this yearaCredit:GBBO As the youngest cohort ever to grace the screens of the programme, the millennial contestants of the Great British Bake Off have mastered the stylish cakes, biscuits and breads fit for Instagram. When it comes to actual recipes, it seems they could require a little more help, as more than half turned to their parents and grandparents for instructions.Seven of the 13 Bake Off contestants appearing on the first episode used tried-and-tested family recipes from their mothers and grandmothers as they were asked to make a fruit cake.Others received words of wisdom from their parents over the phone before entering the tent, with one proud mother advising by text: “Be calm, be slow, be confident.”This year’s contestants are the youngest group ever, with an average age of 31 and two young bakers aged 20 who were in primary school when the series first aired.  Michael, 26, who says he was taught to bake by his mother using old, handwritten recipes passed down from her grandparents, told viewers: “Mum text me at 5 this morning saying be calm, be slow, be confident. It’s going to be fine.” He went on to slice his finger three times during filming, requiring large plasters.The weekly showstopper challenge saw contestants asked to create the cake of their childhood dreams, with fairy gardens, toadstool houses, pirate islands and purple carousels from the younger bakers and a “retro” rocket from veteran of the group Phil, 56.  Jamie, 20Credit:GBBO And as Toksvig heard Henry, also 20, had not made an Angel Slice Cake before, she told him: “That’s because you’re 12.”After being tasked with making a fruit cake, at least seven bakers turned to recipes provided by their elders at home. Amelia, a 24-year-old fashion designer, plumped for her mother’s technique for infusing fruit with brandy, saying she had been baking with her since she was five and still left “lots of washing up”.  Henry, 20Credit:GBBO The departure of 33-year-old Dan on the first episode last night brings the average age down marginally even further down, while 35-year-old Michelle was crowned Star Baker. Half of the bakers are in their 20s, after the production company said more young people than ever were applying as the hobby grew in popularity among Generation Z. During the first show, presenters Sandi Toksvig and Noel Fielding and hosts Prue Leith and Paul Hollywood teased the nervous cohort about their age, asking one whether his mother knew he was out and whether his voice had yet broken. Toksvig introduced the show by referring to the 13 competitors as the “baker’s dozen”, clarifying for those in the tent that the term was used by “mostly old people”.Asking 20-year-old Jamie how old he was, Hollywood inquired: “Does your mum know you’re here?” Despite their difficulties, the bakers appeared to have impressed the judges. Hollywood said: “Every year of Bake Off, the standard has got better and better and better, and I expect this year to be just the same.”Evicted from the tent was 33-year-old support worker Dan, who said his wife had helped him practice along with his “amazing” parents.  “I am not going to miss the baking under pressure,” he said. “I’m just going to miss everyone in that tent.”The Great British Bake Off will be on Channel 4 at 8pm on Tuesdays. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Police advice to keep emergency grab bag at home in case of

Others tweeted photographs of their ideal “grab bags”, containing items such as gin, prosecco and the family pet. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Police advice for British people to keep an emergency “grab bag” at home has been mocked online after officials were accused of “scaremongering”.Multiple police Twitter accounts posted pictures of “grab bags” on Sunday as part of a safety awareness campaign running throughout September.In such bags, British people are advised to keep an “emergency plan”, a whistle, food and water, toiletries, a radio and a a torch as well as other apparently essential items.The Police Scotland account wrote: “Emergencies can happen at any time and it’s recommended to have a #GrabBag ready containing essential items including medication, copies of important documents, food/water, torch, radio and other personal items.”Many mocked this decision and asked what “emergency situation” was likely to occur.Writer Amanda tweeted: “I think if police stations up and down the country are going to start simultaneously suggesting we pack a #GrabBag they should at least hint as to why. A zombie apocalypse is going to need a very different packing strategy to an AI takeover, for example”.Another Twitter user, Meriel Myers, added: “Just packing my #GrabBag and so far I have Jaffa Cakes, Gin, Phone charger, Pot noodle, Colouring book and a Pac a Mac! No one can tell me I’m not prepared!” Well I’m not taking any chances, that’s my #GrabBag packed & ready to go pic.twitter.com/eGELNtBjn4— Graham Love (@GLove39) September 8, 2019 However, many accused the police accounts of scaremongering. One Twitter critic said: “What’s all this scaremongering #GrabBag b——-?”You may as well go the whole hog: ‘A nuclear attack can happen at any time. Make sure you have a fallout shelter ready…’.” After hundreds of people criticised the campaign, organised by a group called 30 Ways 30 Days which comprises local authorities and police, it was forced to clarify the grab bag had nothing to do with Brexit.Prepared in Essex, a group which is part of the campaign, said: “The campaign has no links to Brexit and there isn’t anything that you haven’t be told. It is just coincidence that these issues have collided on Twitter and some people have assumed that they are linked. The group added: “There was no intention for this to be seen as scaremongering.”A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “The messaging is part of a general resilience awareness campaign that runs each year during September which emergency services and partners across Britain are taking part in.” Got my grab bag ready for going down to London. pic.twitter.com/fzFQTHJVgY— Scott Reid 🔍 (@scottreid1980) September 8, 2019 read more