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Nigeria, Morocco, South Africa, Rwanda express interest in hosting Formula One

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Formula One

Nigeria, Morocco, South Africa, and Rwanda have expressed interest in hosting a Formula One race, commercial Managing Director of F1, Sean Bratches said on Thursday.

Bratches said they are considering a return to the African continent and are having discussions on the possibility of staging a race in the Moroccan city of Marrakesh and South Africa’s Kyalami circuit.

‘We’ve been having very productive conversations in South Africa and to a lesser extent in Morocco about bringing a grand prix… we’re on it. It’s really important to us,” Bratches said at a Sport Industry Breakfast Club event.

Morocco and South Africa have hosted world championship grands prix in the past, Casablanca in 1958 and South Africa in East London in the 1960s and Kyalami 20 times between 1967 and 1993.

“We race on five continents now and the last habitable continent that we don’t race in is Africa,” said Bratches.

‘‘It’s a marketplace in which we would like to race.”

Bratches said there was a “high degree of interest” from Morocco in a circuit race in Marrakesh, with the authorities seeing Formula One, owned by U.S.-based Liberty Media, as an economic engine for growth and tourism.

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The all-electric Formula E series already holds an annual street race there.

“The vast majority of our grands prix are underpinned by government and it’s because it works. We shine a bright light on these cities,” said Bratches.

Yath Gangakumaran, Formula One’s director of Strategy and Business Development, told reporters that Rwanda and Nigeria were also keen to be involved in fan events.

“I think Rwanda in particular have seen the benefits of the Arsenal sponsorship deal,” he said. The Premier League club has had a ‘Visit Rwanda’ logo on players’ left shirt sleeves since last year.

“There’s a lot of interest not just for races but for actuations throughout the continent.”

Next season will see two new grands prix added to the calendar, with the return of the Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort after a 35-year absence and the debut of Vietnam, but Mexico, Spain, Germany and Britain are out of contract at the end of 2019.

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Covid-19: I tested positive after the premier league suspension, Brendan Rogers, reveals

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Brendan Rogers

Leicester City head coach, Brendan Rodgers, has revealed that he had the novel COVID-19 after the Premier League was suspended in March.

Rodgers, who said he has now fully recovered from the virus, disclosed this in an interview with BBC radio.

The 47-year-old said:

“My wife and I had it [COVID-19] just after the Premier League was suspended.

“One week later, I started to struggle, I had no smell and taste, and it was the same with my wife.

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“I could hardly walk, and It reminded me of climbing mountain Kilimanjaro, as you climb higher you get more breathless.

“I went for a run, and I could not do it. I was so weak and had a weird sensation for three weeks of having no taste.”

Rodgers is now the second manager in the Premier League to confirm he had the virus after Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta.

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Apollo Crews: Nigerian-born wrestler wins first WWE US Champion title

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Nigerian-born America wrestler Sesugh Uhaa popularly known as Apollo Crews has clinched the United States Championship on Monday Night Raw.

The 32-year-old heavily built fighter, dethroned former champion, Andrade, to win his first-ever title in the WWE rings.

According to newsmen, the immediate ex-champion didn’t respond well to the defeat handed to him by his opposition

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The victory would delight Crews after stopping the person who prevented him from participating in the Money in the Bank ladder match.

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Reacting to his victory, he wrote;

I can finally say I’ve won my first title in @WWE.” Congratulations, @WWEApollo!!! #WWERaw“.

Reports reveal that the 32-year-old had booked his place in the men’s event ahead of his clash with Andrade on the April 27 edition of Raw.

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However, he tweaked his knee over the course of the bout, and El Idolo subsequently targeted it to such an extent the referee called for the bell.

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Russia to allow some spectators in stadiums when top flight matches resume

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Russia’s Sports Minister said on Friday he welcomed a decision by the authorities to allow spectators into stadiums when matches in the country’s top professional football league resume next month.

The Russian Premier League halted matches in mid-March because of the COVID-19 crisis and is set to resume action on June 21.

“It’s important that the football championship resumes in the presence of spectators, even though small in number,” Russian news agencies quoted Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin as saying.

“I watched Bundesliga matches. The mood is very strange. There isn’t enough emotion. Without spectators, the matches do not look the way we are used to.”

Several European professional leagues resumed matches this month, including German’s top professional league, but without spectators.

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Russia’s consumer health watchdog agreed on Thursday that stadiums could welcome spectators at Russian Premier League matches if they took up no more than 10 percent of a given venue’s capacity.

League champions Zenit St Petersburg currently leads the standings on 50 points after 22 matches played.

Lokomotiv Moscow and Krasnodar are second and third respectively, nine points behind the leaders.

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Earlier this month, Russia said it would allow foreign athletes competing in its domestic sports leagues to enter the country even though its borders remain closed to foreigners.

It said the move was designed to help clubs resume training.

As of Friday, Russia had recorded 387,623 cases of the novel coronavirus, the third-highest reported total in the world after the U.S. and Brazil

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