O’Brien hails Lockinge hope

first_img A dual Grade One winner in America, he faces an altogether different test in Berkshire as he will be racing on grass for the first time, and the straight mile presents another new challenge for him. “He’s a very exciting horse. For us to get a horse like him is incredible,” said O’Brien. “He’s been very natural and very relaxed. He’s a big powerhouse of a horse. I’d say his trip is around a mile and he could end up at the Breeders’ Cup again.” Aidan O’Brien is anticipating big things from his US import Verrazano, who has his first run for the yard in the JLT Lockinge Stakes at Newbury. Paul Deegan’s Sruthan is a second Irish contender and is on the up having won his last two races at Group Three level, but the trainer is well aware this will require another step forward. “He won’t be out of place,” said Deegan. “It’s a bit of a shot in the dark, although it looks a better race now than it might have done a week or so ago. Originally it looked a penalty kick for Olympic Glory but now with Verrazano and Chopin, it’s a good race. “He’s done little wrong, he’s won four of his seven races and the last two were Group Threes. There are not many Group Twos he can go for. “I thought he always wanted good ground to be seen at his best but his last two races have been on soft and they’ve been his best, so he’s versatile. There’s a couple in there that might want it soft. “We’ll know more after this. We went to the Gladness thinking he needed the run, but he won it well. I felt before that he’d improve for the race and he certainly has at home. Whether he’s a Group One horse or not we’ll find out.” Frankie Dettori believes the race is the perfect starting point for Olympic Glory. Richard Hannon’s colt impressed hugely in first-time blinkers when winning the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes but was last seen trailing home behind American superstar Wise Dan in the Breeders’ Cup Mile on firm ground at Santa Anita. “I’ve ridden him work three times and he only does enough, that’s why he wears the headgear,” Dettori told Racing UK. “He seems in tremendous shape, is best on a straight track and a mile is ideal for him. It looks the perfect starting point. Press Association “Every Group One is hard to win so we certainly won’t be taking anything for granted. We’ll just do our own thing and hope it is good enough. One thing is he has won first time out at two and first time out at three, so I hope it’s the same again at four.” Hannon also runs Montiridge, the mount of Richard Hughes, but believes Olympic Glory is a worthy favourite. “We know he has the class – he won the QEII Stakes at Ascot last year – and, though that was in a mudbath, people seem to forget that on good ground he finished second to Dawn Approach in a Coventry and ran Moonlight Cloud to a short head in the Prix Jacques le Marois at Deauville,” he told his website. “We have no qualms about the going and he has a favourite’s chance. “We also run Montiridge, who is rated 10lb inferior to Olympic Glory. This is a step up in class for him but, though he was beaten fair and square by Tullius in the Sandown Mile, unlike the winner he did not have a run under his belt, so hopefully our fellow can improve on that.” last_img read more

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Other Sports World silver-medallist Sonia Lather advances to quarters after defeating Jelena

first_img New Delhi: The former World silver-medallist Sonia Lather was among the three Indian Women boxers who advanced to the Quarterfinals of the 70th Strandja Memorial Tournament in Sofia, Bulgaria. Sonia Lather clinched victory in the 57 kg category. On the other hand, the men were off to a disappointing start as they lost their respective games. World Championships bronze-medallist Lovlina Borgohain (69kg) and Pwilao Basumatari (64kg) also made their respective way to the quarters of the prestigious European event on Thursday. The crackerjack of an encounter between Sonia Lather, and Serbia’s Jelena was dominated by former over latter, finishing with a scoreline 5-0. Sonia Lather, who is also a two-time Asian silver-medallist will be up against American Yarisel Ramirez. This remains to be seen if she manages to continue her form. On the other hand, Borgohain, a gold-medallist from the Indian Open last year, got the better of Australian Jessica Messina. Basumatari endured a stiffer challenge in Bulgarian Melis Yonuzova before prevailing 3-2. She will have a tougher challenge in the quarters as she plays Croatia’s Marija Malencia.  However, there was a disappointment for the country’s men with former Commonwealth Games silver-medallist Mandeep Jangra (69kg) and rookie Harsh Lakra (81kg) bowing out following opening-round losses. Jangra lost 0-5 to Ukraine’s Viktor Petrov, while Lakra was beaten by Azerbaijan’s Rauf Rahimov.India’s best ever medal haul at the competition stands at 11, which was fetched last year. India will be hoping to emerge victoriously and fetch more medals than before. More than 300 boxers from over 40 nations are competing in the ongoing edition.  For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. highlights Sonia Lather advances to quarter-finals after beating Serbia’s Jelena. Men didn’t have a great outing at the 70th Strandja Memorial Tournament.India’s best ever medal haul at the competition stands at 11.last_img read more

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We had nothing to lose – Walton

first_imgTHE Guyana Amazon Warriors rode the wave of the Chadwick Walton Show on Sunday evening when they picked up their second win in this year’s Hero Caribbean Premier League.Chasing down an ominous 160 for victory, the Warriors opted for a switch in the batting, a switch which they ensured they were ahead of the curve at the end of the powerplay.The chief in that effort was Jamaican-born Walton, who slammed a match-winning 92 before departing. He contended that there was a do-or-die mentality.“Our back was against the wall and we needed a win and so we just came out focused and went at it. We had nothing to lose,” he told reporters following the match.The Warriors seemed to return to the form that they are known for with a shakeup in the batting as Sohail Tanvir opened alongside Walton.According to the wicketkeeper-batsman, the option to produce the switch was not one make unilaterally.“It was a team effort. I mean the coaches decided that they will have to make a change because if you do the same thing over and over and you expect different results then it’s pointless.”Looking ahead, Walton predicted a tough task to qualify for the playoffs but remained optimistic that the side had what it takes to make it there.last_img read more

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Trojans ready for crosstown showdown

first_imgMore than bragging rights will be on the line this Saturday afternoon when the USC football team heads to the Rose Bowl to face archrival UCLA. Both the No. 24 Trojans (7-3, 6-2 Pac-12) and the No. 11 Bruins (8-2, 5-2) still have a shot to win the Pac-12 South, but a loss spells trouble for either team’s hopes of reaching the conference championship game. USC head coach Steve Sarkisian is aware of the emotions that surround such a heated rivalry but believes his team is focused on the task at hand.Top notch · Redshirt junior quarterback Cody Kessler is second in the Pac-12 in passing efficiency, while UCLA’s gunslinger, Brett Hundley, is third. Kessler has thrown 29 touchdowns and just three interceptions this season. – Ralf Cheung | Daily Trojan “We’re focusing on what we can control,” Sarkisian said. “Emotions are tricky, especially in rivalry games. Sometimes you like that emotion in the air, but sometimes it can get the better of you. There’s a fine line and a balance in there.”For redshirt junior quarterback Cody Kessler, the game has a special meaning.“You’re remembered for the games you play [against] UCLA and Notre Dame,” Kessler told Trojans Live. “Unfortunately, last year we lost to both of them. So definitely this year I got a little chip on my shoulder.”Fittingly, the matchup will serve as a duel between two of the Pac-12’s best signal callers: Kessler and UCLA’s Brett Hundley. Hundley leads the conference in completion percentage (72.1) and ranks third in passing efficiency (158.0), while Kessler comes in at second in both categories. Containing Hundley — who has also rushed for 564 yards and seven touchdowns — is the key to putting the brakes on the Bruins’ offensive attack.“[UCLA]’s got an explosive passing game,” Sarkisian said. “They’ve got a plethora of receivers that they can roll through. They use a lot of tempo.”Junior defensive end Leonard Williams is focusing on Hundley’s running ability.“Last year and the year before we were kind of controlling the game in the first half and then [Hundley] started getting some scrambling yards,” Williams said. “That’s when they started coming back and winning the game.”Results aside, UCLA has clearly been an improved football team in the second half of the season. The Bruins started the year with ugly non-conference wins over Virginia, Memphis and Texas, eventually falling to Utah and Oregon in consecutive weeks. Pass protection proved to be the team’s biggest problem, as opponents sacked Hundley and backup quarterback Jerry Neuheisel 23 times through five games. UCLA’s offensive line has buckled down of late, however, allowing only eight sacks since the Utah loss. Sarkisian and the Trojans’ defensive front will aim to reverse this trend on Saturday.“We’re going to have to be effective at [the pass rush],” Sarkisian said. “Brett Hundley’s just too good. We can’t let him stand back there and survey the field, and then when it’s not there, tuck the ball and run.”Helping USC in its goal to keep Hundley on his toes will be senior linebacker J.R. Tavai, who returns from injury this week. Williams feels that Tavai will play a key role against the Bruins.“I’m glad to have J.R. [Tavai] back,” Williams said. “He’s a great pass rusher, and he’s also physical in the run game. He’s definitely going to help us out.”Saturday’s contest could also play a large part in determining the Pac-12’s top rusher. Though redshirt junior tailback Javorius “Buck” Allen currently leads the conference with 1184 yards, UCLA running back Paul Perkins is right on his tail. Perkins has racked up 1172 yards on only 190 carries, compared to Allen’s 217. Sarkisian feels that the running game is an underrated facet of the Bruins’ success.“They’ve committed themselves much more to running the football with designed runs for the runner,” Sarkisian said. “That’s gone on for about the five or six weeks. [Perkins] just presents more problems. The more offense you have, the more versatility you have, the tougher you are to defend.”Last week’s 38-30 win over Cal was the latest in a series of games where the Trojans struggled to finish off their opponents — the team has been outscored 78-66 in the fourth quarter this season. Sophomore linebacker Su’a Cravens acknowledged this issue at practice this week.“That’s kind of been the problem we’ve had a lot this year is just to execute and be disciplined in the fourth [quarter],” Cravens said. “As long as we’re disciplined throughout the game and everybody’s doing their job, we won’t have to worry.”Though USC leads the all-time series 46-30, Hundley and the Bruins have won two straight against their crosstown foes. A win for UCLA this time around would leave them just one game away from a Pac-12 South title, while the Trojans still need an Arizona State loss to advance. This weekend’s battle kicks off at 5 p.m. PST and will be broadcast on ABC.Quick HitsThe Bruins are a four-point favorite to win their third straight against USC.As is tradition, both teams will wear home colors at the Rose Bowl. USC will again wear metallic red helmets.Sarkisian mentioned that senior cornerback Josh Shaw could play against the Bruins.“I’m getting closer to narrowing down his role,” the first-year coach said. “But a lot of his role just depends on how he looks on gameday.”Freshman safety John Plattenburg is fully ready to play.Still no update on freshman tight end Bryce Dixon, who missed the Cal game because of a student conduct issue. Dixon returned to practice this week, but his status against UCLA is unknown.last_img read more

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Okocha Crowned ‘King of the Game’

first_imgThe sports betting platform will also offer customers the opportunity to bet on all major sporting events, including football, tennis, basketball, boxing, volleyball and more.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Nigerian football legend, Austin Jay-Jay Okocha, was officially crowned “king of the game” at the launch of BetKing, a premium sports betting platform, in Lagos, on Thursday.Regarded as the greatest player of his generation and one of Africa’s best ever, the former Super Eagles captain was the star of the show as the much-anticipated BetKing platform made its entry into the Nigerian sports betting market.“I’ve trained my whole life to be a winner and if I know two things it’s that to be the best takes passion and persistence. Similarly, BetKing’s philosophy really speaks to me in that it believes that everyone, whatever their position, has a chance to become King of their own destiny,” said Jay-Jay who himself has come a long way since he began playing football on the streets of Enugu with a makeshift ball.BetKing has used their team’s combined experience of over 80 years in the Industry to develop and customise a state-of-the-art platform, offering world class odds and bonuses, almost instant payouts, and attractive agent commissions.“We are committed to changing the face of the sports betting industry in Nigeria and will be continuously customising and developing new products with attractive innovative features, whilst maintaining our philosophy of putting our agents and online customers first,” said BetKing CEO Byron Petzer.In celebrating their customers as Kings, BetKing plans also include special promotions and “royal spotlights” on winners and top performing agents.“BetKing will also focus on contributing to Nigerian society. By creating over 4000 jobs in 12 months through its agency network across the country, BetKing will be offering all Nigerians the opportunities to become kingmakers!” added BetKing co-founder Adekunle Adeniji,” he said.BetKing is currently licensed in Lagos and Anambra, Oyo and Osun states and will be commence a national expansion expand across Nigeria in coming months.last_img read more

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Russian Grand Prix: Felipe Massa fastest in wet practice

first_imgWilliams driver Felipe Massa topped an unrepresentative wet second practice at the Russian Grand Prix in which only eight drivers set lap times.He pipped Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel by 0.201 seconds ahead of Williams’ Valtteri Bottas on their final laps.Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen was fourth ahead of McLaren’s Fernando Alonso with times set earlier in the 90 minutes.Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg were among the 12 drivers not to set a timed lap. Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz and McLaren’s Jenson Button were the others who did set a time.Hamilton leads his team-mate by 48 points in the world championship heading into Sunday’s race on the street track around the Sochi Olympic stadium, with Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel a further nine adrift.Including this weekend’s race, there are five grands prix and a maximum of 125 points still available for drivers this year. “It’s the type of surface where the water just stands,” said Hamilton. “It doesn’t drain away anywhere so it looks like when it does rain it takes a long time to dry. It’s really slippery out there; it’s not a lot of fun.”Vettel said: “It was quite tricky because one half was wet and the other was only a bit damp. But it was good fun. I wanted to go out and do a little bit in the end.”Six other drivers also went out without setting a lap time, while Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was one of six drivers not to run at all as teams preferred not to risk their cars with dry weather predicted for qualifying and race at the weekend.Alonso knows he will start the event from the back of the grid as a result of a total of 35 places of grid penalties for using more than the permitted number of engine parts.The Spaniard earned a 25 grid-place penalty on Thursday when Honda fitted a new-specification internal combustion engine as well as a new turbo, energy store and MGU-H – the electric motor that recovers energy from the turbo. But Honda then replaced the new engine after the first session and fitted instead an engine of the previous specification. Because that also had a new turbo and MGU-H, another 10 grid places was added to the penalty.Putin’s raceAnother new grand prix, another vanity project for a nation and its leader. In this case, one of the most powerful of all, Russian President Vladimir Putin.This is Putin’s race. He was instrumental in making it happen, in ensuring it was funded, all with the aim of making host city Sochi a kind of Monaco of the Black Sea.Putin’s commitment to the place was clear at the inaugural event last year, when he turned up on race day, sat conspicuously in the stands between F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone and FIA president Jean Todt and greeted the drivers before they went on to the podium. The track’s not up to much, and the town is some way short of the ambitions held for it. But when one of the most powerful men in the world is offering $250m for a five-year deal, F1 tends to follow the money.–Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @Joy997FM. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img read more

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Oduro Nyarko: We will miss Abra Appiah dearly

first_imgThe CEO of Wa All stars, Mr Oduro Nyarko has expressed sadness at outgoing Premier league board chairman Welbeck Abra-Appiah.”We will miss Appiah sorely. He has his own style and is very professional, very just and impartial,” Nyarko told Asempa FM.Oduro Nyarko refused to mentioned a supposed name who will fit in the PLB chairmanship position but urged whoever comes in to exhibit professionalism.”I urge whoever occupies  the seat to exhibit professionalism and good qualities like Abra Appiah.” –The PLB chairman has decided to resign after serving for decades.– Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @Joy997FM. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img

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Don Mattingly uses brief postseason playing experience to lead Dodgers into playoffs

first_img“No doubt you want to see how you respond, how you stack up in that setting,” Mattingly said.That it finally happened as he was writing the final chapter of his career makes the near-misses especially poignant, because when Mattingly did get to the postseason in 1995, he didn’t just show up.He went off, hitting .417 with a .440 on-base percentage and .708 slugging percentage with 10 hits, four doubles, a home run and six RBIs for a whopping 1.148 OPS in 24 plate appearances against the Seattle Mariners.After waiting 14 seasons to see Donnie Baseball in the postseason, we were left wishing we could have seen so much more of it.Nearly 20 years later, Mattingly is much less disenchanted about it.As he prepares to guide his National League West champion Dodgers into their divisional playoff series against the Atlanta Braves, Mattingly is more grateful then resentful. “I would have been disappointed had I not gotten at least that one chance to play in the postseason, because you really wanna see how you handle it,” Mattingly said. “And I did get that chance. And that’s satisfying.”More than that, it’s something he can draw on as the Dodgers prepare for what they hope is a prolonged October run.“The playoffs are a whole different animal, it is. Because you wake up in the morning and your stomach’s in knots, you feel it, and you get to the ballpark and it’s just a whole different kind of energy,” he said. “Don’t get me wrong, there’s energy during the regular season, but it’s 162 games so it’s not quite the same. In the playoffs, you wake up in the morning and you know exactly what’s up. So the experience was good because you want to see how you react, how you play. How you deal with that big stage.”Understanding that, Mattingly believes he’s properly equipped to deal with it as a manager working with a club largely made up of inexperienced postseason players.“That’s why I’m so glad I got to experience it myself,” Mattingly said. “Because I know what that feeling is, what it’s all about. What these guys are dealing with. The emotion and the nerves. I had the good fortune of being there as a player.”Mattingly didn’t sense as much of that anxiety as a coach under manager Joe Torre with the New York Yankees and Dodgers from 2004-10, but he guarantees when he wakes up Thursday morning in Atlanta for Game 1 against the Braves, that feeling will return.“Oh, most definitely,” Mattingly said.If Mattingly’s learned one primary lesson managing the Dodgers the past three years, it’s how dramatically different the pressure is making suggestions as a coach compared with making decisions as a manager.And that’s going to be ratcheted up considerably during the postseason.“It’s just different as a coach,” Mattingly said. “As a manager, you have to make so many decisions. And it’s all happening right now. And you may have two or three different options to consider, but you have one shot to make the right decision.”Much like he did as a player, Mattingly deals with that stress by meeting it head on with a practical approach.It’s not that he doesn’t sweat it.Just that he tries to minimize it. “I always try to bring it back to the most simplistic form,” Mattingly said. “Just keep it all in perspective. The key is never letting anything get bigger than the game.”That minimalistic sensibility helped him get through the Dodgers’ early-season struggles when they languished in last place and people were howling for him to be fired.At the time, Mattingly outwardly preaching patience, that the Dodgers were capable of turning it around. And while inside he was churning, his level-headedness dictated the players would ultimately determine whether they flourished or continued to flounder.And his fate ultimately rested in their hands.To overly worry about it, to live and die with the speculation did him no good.So he reported to work every day, kept grinding and just let the future unfold.Mostly, he turned down the volume on the noise swirling around him.“It’s just keeping it simple. It’s having perspective,” Mattingly said. “And you don’t let the chatter get to you. You gotta break away from that and focus on what you do, what you can control. Because what happens is that chatter gets loud and distracting, if you let it.“And the reality is it doesn’t matter. You can’t let it affect you.”Not that he wasn’t aware. “You can’t ever block everything out, and I think with the way things are today more gets through because there’s just so much more chatter out there,” he said. “I mean, I like to put SportsCenter on and look at the scores, but it always seems like there’s something there. And I don’t like the outside stuff. Listening to someone’s opinions, because really, that’s all it is. And that’s the part you can’t let get to you.”His players appreciated how calm he remained. Especially during the dark times.And as they sit on the doorstep of the playoffs, they feed off his steady leadership.“He’s been great. It’s very important to have a guy who’s consistent, who doesn’t panic no matter what,” Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said. “Win or lose, go on a losing streak or a winning streak, he doesn’t get too high or too low and we feel that, we respond to that.”Understanding the pulse of his team and figuring out all the various personalities is an aspect of managing Mattingly was attracted to toward the end of his career, especially after watching vastly different managers like Billy Martin, Yogi Berra, Lou Piniella and Buck Showalter deal with the Yankees over his 14-year career.And after putting in his time as a bench coach and hitting coach under Torre, Mattingly is settling into his role as a manager.There’s been a definite process finally taking the reins.“It’s fairly natural, but confrontation is not natural. For anybody, I’d imagine. And that’s one of the things you’ve got to deal with,” Mattingly said. “There’s always a little fire going. For the most part it looks smooth, but there’s always guys that aren’t happy with playing time or the way you’re using them or they think they should be doing something else or doing something a different way. So there’s always guys that are not happy.”Initially, it was a part of the job Mattingly had to get used to.“Not so much that I didn’t like it, it just didn’t come easy for me,” Mattingly said. “But now it’s getting easier, and now it’s at the point of ‘Come on, let’s deal with it. Let’s talk about it. Let’s nip this at the bud. And not wait until tomorrow.’”It’s just one of the aspects of managing Mattingly is mastering.As far as knowing what the playoffs are all about for a player, he learned that 18 years ago.It took awhile. But at least he got there.See the Dodgers Playoff Page for slide shows, latest updates and more coverage. But for various reasons it didn’t happen, not the least of which was the Yankees’ misfortune of playing in the stacked American League East and under the then-stringent playoff format.“It wasn’t like you just had to play ‘OK’ to make the playoffs,” said Mattingly, the Dodgers’ third-year manager. “You had a lot of teams in your division and obviously it was just two divisions. You had to have a great season. And we had some great seasons, but just not quite great enough.” Put it this way: Without the wild card and three-division format of today, 90 wins didn’t go as far then as it does now. The Yankees won 90 or more games three times from 1983 to 1987 – and won 87 and 89 the other two seasons — but had no postseason berths to show for it.Which meant fans never got the chance to see one of the best players of an entire decade play October baseball.There is something disappointing in that — for us as fans and for Mattingly himself. That Don Mattingly the player had to wait until the final year of his career to experience postseason baseball wasn’t so much a tragedy as it was a disappointment.Mattingly wasn’t the best player of his generation, but he was in the conversation while winning the MVP award in 1985 and finishing second in 1986.And from 1984 to 1989, he was arguably the best first baseman and among the best hitters in baseball.When someone puts together the type of resume Mattingly authored with the New York Yankees through most of the 1980s, the fan in us wants to see if he can carry that sweet left-handed batting stroke and slick Gold Gove play at first base onto baseball’s biggest stage.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

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Governor delays decision on easing coronavirus restrictions — two more local cases of COVID-19

first_imgJOHNSTON — Governor Kim Reynolds has delayed her announcement about when she may ease more pandemic-related restrictions.“I’m still reviewing some information with the Department of Public Health and my team today and will be announcing the new changes tomorrow,” Reynolds says. “…They don’t really expire until the 15th, so we had some time.”While Reynolds mentioned hospital data, she declined to specify what she may be evaluating as she weighs lifting her orders that closed businesses and restricted public gatherings. “I know that Iowans and businesses are eager to know what’s next,” Reynolds says, “but as I’ve said all along, these decisions must be made carefully and driven by data and I look forward to providing that update tomorrow.”The latest information from the state shows 18 more Iowans have died of COVID-19 and state officials have added 539 more cases to the overall tally of positive test results among Iowans. That includes 319 Iowans who were tested in Nebraska and work at a packing plant just across the border from Sioux City.Iowa Department of Public Health deputy director Sarah Reisetter says she can’t speak to why Nebraska delayed the release of this information for two weeks. “We do believe that the employees did receive their test result,” Reisetter says, “but this will allow Iowa staff in the local public health agency to start doing that contact tracing and case investigation so we can help to identify any close contacts those individuals may have had and try to give them appropriate public health guidance.”The governor announced late this morning a “Test Iowa” site will be set up in Storm Lake, which is home to a packing plant. Drive-through COVID-19 testing will be conducted in Storm Lake starting Saturday. === Two more cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in our immediate listening area, with single cases in Floyd and Franklin County. That now brings the total number of cases in our area to 60 with one death. Those cases are: 14 in Cerro Gordo; 12 in Butler; seven in Franklin; six each in Floyd and Wright; five in Winnebago; three each in Hancock and Mitchell; and two each in Kossuth and Worth. 539 more confirmed cases have been identified in Iowa for a total now 12,912. 18 more deaths were reported to bring that total to 289. 464 more cases have fully recovered to bring that statewide total to 5618.last_img read more

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