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first_img4/5 BURTON TAYLORTUESDAY-SATURDAY, 7.30PM ‘Babies grow in rubbish,’ states Michael matter-of-factly, explaining how he found a baby on a trash heap, named it Debris and began to care for it. Unlike much of the dusty drama that finds its way onto the stages of Oxford theatres, Debris is a modern play written in 2004 by up-and-coming playwright David Kelly. The play explores the lives of dysfunctional siblings Michael and Michelle, who have a drunken, abusive father and a dead mother. Debris portrays people whose lives are thwarted by their difficult and dysfunctional surroundings. Director Will Maynard has chosen a difficult play, full of lyrical flights and unexpected imagery, and navigates it brilliantly. Despite sometimes tipping into the bizarre or sentimental, the overall result is an intelligently directed, insightfully acted play. This is even more impressive given the inexperienced cast. Michael, played by Matt Malby, has all the nervous, gangly energy of a teenage boy. He really comes alive when discovering the baby; this is awkward teenage tenderness at its most powerful, a deep instinct to protect coming through excellently. Michelle, played by Sarah Milne-Das, is a more balanced character and, although sometimes bland, has flights of anger and fear which are both believable and passionate. Audiences could be bemused by lines like ‘Plant child sucking death through a potato tongue,’ and although Milne-Das does her best, sometimes the bizarre imagery doesn’t quite work. What does, though, is the pair’s poignant relationship as siblings, caught between love and hatred as only siblings can be. This could have been a soap-opera abusive-home scenario, but instead, the play becomes a moving, often surprising, tale of the love and tenderness which can struggle out from tiny cracks in rubbish heaps. By Elen Griffithslast_img read more

News story: Banks scored on quality of service: latest results published

first_imgThe measure was introduced by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) after it conducted a market investigation into the banking sector in 2016. The league table style results allow customers to clearly see how their bank compares on quality of service and helps to drive competition between banks to improve the quality of their offering to customers.Since August 2018, banks have been required to publish information on how likely people would be to recommend their bank – as well its online and mobile banking, branch and overdraft services – to friends, relatives or other businesses, with results being updated every 6 months.Today banks have also published figures on how long it takes to open current accounts and replace debit cards. They are required to do so by the Financial Conduct Authority on a quarterly basis.Andrea Coscelli, Chief Executive of the Competition and Markets Authority, said: We introduced this survey last August so that people can see exactly how well banks are treating their customers. If people are unhappy with the customer service they are currently getting, I would encourage them to look at the results and think about switching to a better performing bank. personal small businesscenter_img The results of the survey must be prominently displayed in banks’ branches, as well as on their websites and apps.The latest survey results are available on the following links:last_img read more

Mayweather-Pacquiao Super-Fight is ‘definitely going to happen’

first_imgFloyd Mayweather Sr. told that a mega-fight between his son Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao is “definitely going to happen.”Mayweather has two fights left on a six-fight, $250-million deal with Showtime. He says he’ll retirewhen the deal ends. That leaves only two opportunities for the two camps to settle their differences and organize what would be the biggest fight of this generation.Floyd Sr. says it’s happening, though he doesn’t seem to be going on hard evidence (via FightHype):”That fight’s gonna happen. Trust me. That fight’s definitely gonna happen. It’s a fight for the world, man, right there. It’s the biggest fight that has ever been in life, so like I said man, that fight’s gonna happen. I’ma tell you right now, he never told me the fight’s gonna happen, but I’ma tell you, the fight’s gonna happen. You mark my words and we’ll see. And it needs to happen.Just like Ali and Joe Frazier, or Ali and George Foreman, something like that, man, it’s one of those fights like that. The world wants to see it and they’ll want to see it again when Floyd beats Pacquiao. I’m pretty sure Floyd is gonna make it look where people are going to want to see it again, because I’m just saying, Floyd’s gonna pick Pacquiao apart, man.”Mayweather’s biggest recent fight was against Canelo Alvarez. He made $41.5 million on the fight. A Pacquiao super-fight would trump that amount, even if he has to give a larger percentage of the purse to Manny. Mayweather Sr.’s proclamation comes after Pacquiao’s promoter Bob Arum suggested that the fight could happen early in 2015.Still, there’s more reason to be pessimistic than optimistic. The two camps couldn’t make this fight happen in 2010, when both fighters were at the peak of their powers and the money involved would have been off the charts. The bad blood hasn’t cooled. In 2012 Arum accused Floyd of turning down $100 million to fight Pacquiao, and said the fight would never happen. As recently as September, Mayweather was antagonizing Pacquiao on Instagram.As with every Pacquiao-Mayweather rumor in the last five years, it’s best not to believe it until the two actually step into the ring.last_img read more

Why college football’s ‘Games of the Century’ are better than any Game 7 in other sports

first_imgSorry, Game 7, but nothing beats the regular-season matchup when No. 1 meets No. 2 on a college campus. Game 7 claims to be the two-best words in sports — and the winner-take-all-nature of it creates a compelling case. It just isn’t better than No. 1 vs. No. 2 — and that will be proven one more time when No. 1 LSU meets No. 2 Alabama at Bryant-Denny Stadium at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday.A large section of sports fans will disagree with that sentiment, and that’s fine. We didn’t say Super Bowls, national championship games, the World Cup final or the English Premier League final. We won’t touch those, because we know it’s not possible (and we’re still not 100 percent sure how the EPL works).MORE: Ranking every college football ‘Game of the Century’At least read our case before you retweet with comment:We’ll start by taking the argument we can win. There is not a better regular-season sporting event than a college football No. 1-vs.-No. 2 matchup. College basketball can create those with ease, like it did Tuesday night with No. 1 Michigan State and No. 2 Kentucky in the Champions Classic. That’s on a neutral site. There’s not a regular-season matchup in the NFL, NBA or MLB that creates the kind of buildup that No. 1 vs. No. 2 does. It has attracted President Donald Trump’s attention, too. There is no argument to be had here.Now let’s go for more.There have been just 24 regular-season “Game of the Century” matchups since the AP Poll era began in 1936. LSU and Alabama met in the last such meeting on Nov. 5, 2011. That came a little more than a week after St. Louis and Texas played in Game 7 of the World Series.There have been six Game 7 situations in the MLB playoffs since, including the World Series with Kansas City-San Francisco (2014), Cleveland-Chicago (2016), Houston-Los Angeles (2017) and Washington-Houston (2019). It would be hypocritical not to mention that the Indians-Cubs Game 7 could be considered the greatest single sporting event of all time, but the other three games were just OK (and it’s OK to say that out loud).There have been 38 Game 7 situations in the NHL playoffs and 28 Game 7 situations in the NBA playoffs since LSU and Alabama played in 2011. Game 7 is great — all 66 of them. Cleveland-Golden State was great in the 2016 NBA Finals. St. Louis was great against Boston in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals last year. Those are the only ones that touch Alabama-LSU.It’s about the value of scarcity, and that is what a “Game of the Century” provides. This is just the seventh regular-season Game of the Century since 1991, and chances are you remember where you were, who you were with and what you were doing for all of them:— Where were you when Gerry Thomas’ 34-yard field goal sailed “Wide Right” and No. 2 Miami beat No. 1 Florida State 17-16 in 1991?— Where were you when Shawn Wooden batted down Charlie Ward’s last pass and No. 2 Notre Dame beat No. 1 Florida State 31-24 in 1993?— Where were you when No. 1 Ohio State and No. 2 Michigan put on a 42-39 show in the first “Game of the Century” between the storied rivals in 2006?— Where were you when LSU’s Drew Alleman made a field goal to win a 9-6 slugfest against Alabama in 2011?MORE: Can Alabama, LSU give true meaning to ‘Game of the Century’?Those are the games you remember watching from the living room with your friends and family. They were special event. You might have thrown something at the TV. There’s just something about No. 1-vs.-No. 2 that lives on forever.You can argue that the stakes aren’t high enough and that there has to be some sort of championship finality to the game, but that is the beauty of the “Game of the Century.” It doesn’t need that to pull in monster TV ratings. The last LSU vs. Alabama matchup pulled in the second-highest Nielsen rating for a regular-season game, behind only the legendary Notre Dame vs. Miami “Catholics vs. Convicts” game in 1988. That was No. 1 vs. No. 4 — another game is up there with any Game 7 or “Game of the Century.”It’s just better when you have No. 1 vs. No. 2. Let the teams do the rest. This one Saturday might be the best one in the regular season yet. It won’t be a 9-6 rock-fight this time. You need stakes? Would you rather watch a “Game of the Century” in college football or a Game 7 — in any other sport?It shouldn’t be an argument. There’s not a more distinct sporting event than those rare occasions when the two best teams meet with everything on the line. How about the SEC West, a College Football Playoff spot and perhaps the Heisman Trophy and the No. 1 pick in 2020 NFL Draft? You’ll get that with Alabama and LSU, Nick Saban and Ed Orgeron and Tua Tagovailoa (yeah, he’s going to play) and Joe Burrow. There’s more than enough drama, and it will unfold in front of 100,000-plus fans at Bryant-Denny Stadium. It doesn’t even primetime billing to be that big. There is no guarantee for a rematch either. It’s a unique sporting event, and it has the passion to match.You’ll remember where you were when the winning team throws that “No. 1” in the air after the game is up. Moments like that don’t come around often, and you could feel that for 100 years. That’s why they call it the “Game of the Century.”There will be more than enough Game 7s before the next one.last_img read more

Ex-boyfriend, cops released from custody

first_imgSchool teacher’s deathThe ex-boyfriend of 22-year-old Kescia Branche, who succumbed at the Georgetown Public Hospital while being treated after she was brutally beaten, along with the four Police Constables who were detained by investigators forDead: Kescia Branchequestioning, has been released.This is according to acting Crime Chief Paul Williams, who told Guyana Times that the ex-boyfriend of the dead woman was released on bail, while the Police Constables have also been released but remain under close arrest.Investigators are now said to be pursuing the driver whose taxi Branche used on the night of the incident.The teacher’s battered body was discovered in an unconscious state on the morning of November 5 and rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital, where she later succumbed without ever regaining consciousness.A post-mortem conducted showed that she died of haemorrhaging due to blunt trauma to the head.The teacher of Richard Ishmael Secondary School was found at Princes Street and Louisa Row, Georgetown.Branche, of Cummings Lodge, Greater Georgetown, had left home for a night of partying. (Kizzy Coleman)last_img read more