Thunder guard Kevin Durant drives against Kobe Bryant and Ron Artest of the Lakers.
Thunder guard Kevin Durant drives against Kobe Bryant and Ron Artest of the Lakers.

Durant is making noise



Two weeks ago, Kevin Durant became the youngest scoring champion in the history of the NBA by averaging 30.1 points per game. At the beginning of the season, no one in their right mind would have suggested this was possible. The scoring title was reserved for either Kobe Bryant or LeBron James. On Thursday, Durant put in a dominating performance, leading the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 101-96 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

Several of Oklahoma's young stars played an important part in the victory, however the real story was the 21-year-old Durant's all-around game. While he finished with a respectable 29 points, 19 rebounds and four assists, Durant's defensive performance was the key to victory for the underdog Thunder. The man they now call Durantula started the game by missing his first eight shots. For the game, he shot eight of 24 from the field and one of six from beyond the three-point line. In the game's final quarter, he came alive.

Durant hit several key shots in a row and then went back on defence to guard Bryant. The legendary Lakers scorer could not find a way to make a basket against Durant. In the game's final minutes, Durant delivered a knockout blow when he blocked a shot attempt by Bryant. Soon after, Durant hit two free throws to seal the Thunder's first play-off victory. "Scoring is a big part of my game," Durant said afterwards. "It kind of overshadows other parts of my game. But if I continue to play hard on both ends, it is going to come around for me."

Bryant himself was impressed. "It was a match-up that caught me by surprise. I think he did a great job." The Thunder will probably lose this best-of-seven series, which they trail 2-1. However the victory Thursday night was a showcase of the league's future marquee player. All season Durant has toiled in the obscurity of Oklahoma, far from the media hordes in New York and Los Angeles. This most recent performance will surely cement Durant's place among the league's elite.

sports@thenational.ae

Dubai Rugby Sevens, December 5 -7

World Sevens Series Pools

A – Fiji, France, Argentina, Japan

B – United States, Australia, Scotland, Ireland

C – New Zealand, Samoa, Canada, Wales

D – South Africa, England, Spain, Kenya

SPECS

Toyota land Cruiser 2020 5.7L VXR

Engine: 5.7-litre V8

Transmission: eight-speed automatic

Power: 362hp

Torque: 530Nm

Price: Dh329,000 (base model 4.0L EXR Dh215,900)

The specs: Lamborghini Aventador SVJ

Price, base: Dh1,731,672

Engine: 6.5-litre V12

Gearbox: Seven-speed automatic

Power: 770hp @ 8,500rpm

Torque: 720Nm @ 6,750rpm

Fuel economy: 19.6L / 100km

Winners

Best Men's Player of the Year: Kylian Mbappe (PSG)

Maradona Award for Best Goal Scorer of the Year: Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich)

TikTok Fans’ Player of the Year: Robert Lewandowski

Top Goal Scorer of All Time: Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United)

Best Women's Player of the Year: Alexia Putellas (Barcelona)

Best Men's Club of the Year: Chelsea

Best Women's Club of the Year: Barcelona

Best Defender of the Year: Leonardo Bonucci (Juventus/Italy)

Best Goalkeeper of the Year: Gianluigi Donnarumma (PSG/Italy)

Best Coach of the Year: Roberto Mancini (Italy)

Best National Team of the Year: Italy

Best Agent of the Year: Federico Pastorello

Best Sporting Director of the Year: Txiki Begiristain (Manchester City)

Player Career Award: Ronaldinho

MATCH SCHEDULE

Uefa Champions League semi-final, first leg
Tuesday, April 24 (10.45pm)

Liverpool v Roma

Wednesday, April 25
Bayern Munich v Real Madrid (10.45pm)

Europa League semi-final, first leg
Thursday, April 26

Arsenal v Atletico Madrid (11.05pm)
Marseille v Salzburg (11.05pm)

Director: Nag Ashwin

Starring: Prabhas, Saswata Chatterjee, Deepika Padukone, Amitabh Bachchan, Shobhana

Rating: ★★★★

Company Profile

Company name: Cargoz
Date started: January 2022
Founders: Premlal Pullisserry and Lijo Antony
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 30
Investment stage: Seed

Dengue fever symptoms
  • High fever
  • Intense pain behind your eyes
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle and joint pains
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Swollen glands
  • Rash

If symptoms occur, they usually last for two-seven days

Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices

ROUTE TO TITLE

Round 1: Beat Leolia Jeanjean 6-1, 6-2
Round 2: Beat Naomi Osaka 7-6, 1-6, 7-5
Round 3: Beat Marie Bouzkova 6-4, 6-2
Round 4: Beat Anastasia Potapova 6-0, 6-0
Quarter-final: Beat Marketa Vondrousova 6-0, 6-2
Semi-final: Beat Coco Gauff 6-2, 6-4
Final: Beat Jasmine Paolini 6-2, 6-2

The specs

Engine: 8.0-litre, quad-turbo 16-cylinder

Transmission: 7-speed auto

0-100kmh 2.3 seconds

0-200kmh 5.5 seconds

0-300kmh 11.6 seconds

Power: 1500hp

Torque: 1600Nm

Price: Dh13,400,000

On sale: now

A Round of Applause

Director: Berkun Oya
Starring: Aslihan Gürbüz, Fatih Artman, Cihat Suvarioglu
Rating: 4/5

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

MEDIEVIL (1998)

Developer: SCE Studio Cambridge
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Console: PlayStation, PlayStation 4 and 5
Rating: 3.5/5

Pakistan squad

Sarfraz (c), Zaman, Imam, Masood, Azam, Malik, Asif, Sohail, Shadab, Nawaz, Ashraf, Hasan, Amir, Junaid, Shinwari and Afridi

The specs

Engine: 4.0-litre, six-cylinder

Transmission: six-speed manual

Power: 395bhp

Torque: 420Nm

Price: from Dh321,200

On sale: now

UAE athletes heading to Paris 2024

Equestrian
Abdullah Humaid Al Muhairi, Abdullah Al Marri, Omar Al Marzooqi, Salem Al Suwaidi, and Ali Al Karbi (four to be selected).
Judo
Men: Narmandakh Bayanmunkh (66kg), Nugzari Tatalashvili (81kg), Aram Grigorian (90kg), Dzhafar Kostoev (100kg), Magomedomar Magomedomarov (+100kg); women's Khorloodoi Bishrelt (52kg).

Cycling
Safia Al Sayegh (women's road race).

Swimming
Men: Yousef Rashid Al Matroushi (100m freestyle); women: Maha Abdullah Al Shehi (200m freestyle).

Athletics
Maryam Mohammed Al Farsi (women's 100 metres).

Alan Wake Remastered

Developer: Remedy Entertainment
Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios
Consoles: PlayStation 4 & 5, Xbox: 360 & One & Series X/S and Nintendo Switch
Rating: 4/5

One in four Americans don't plan to retire

Nearly a quarter of Americans say they never plan to retire, according to a poll that suggests a disconnection between individuals' retirement plans and the realities of ageing in the workforce.

Experts say illness, injury, layoffs and caregiving responsibilities often force older workers to leave their jobs sooner than they'd like.

According to the poll from The Associated Press-NORC Centre for Public Affairs Research, 23 per cent of workers, including nearly two in 10 of those over 50, don't expect to stop working. Roughly another quarter of Americans say they will continue working beyond their 65th birthday.

According to government data, about one in five people 65 and older was working or actively looking for a job in June. The study surveyed 1,423 adults in February this year.

For many, money has a lot to do with the decision to keep working.

"The average retirement age that we see in the data has gone up a little bit, but it hasn't gone up that much," says Anqi Chen, assistant director of savings research at the Centre for Retirement Research at Boston College. "So people have to live in retirement much longer, and they may not have enough assets to support themselves in retirement."

When asked how financially comfortable they feel about retirement, 14 per cent of Americans under the age of 50 and 29 per cent over 50 say they feel extremely or very prepared, according to the poll. About another four in 10 older adults say they do feel somewhat prepared, while just about one-third feel unprepared. 

"One of the things about thinking about never retiring is that you didn't save a whole lot of money," says Ronni Bennett, 78, who was pushed out of her job as a New York City-based website editor at 63.

She searched for work in the immediate aftermath of her layoff, a process she describes as akin to "banging my head against a wall." Finding Manhattan too expensive without a steady stream of income, she eventually moved to Portland, Maine. A few years later, she moved again, to Lake Oswego, Oregon. "Sometimes I fantasise that if I win the lottery, I'd go back to New York," says Ms Bennett.

 

Small Things Like These

Director: Tim Mielants
Cast: Cillian Murphy, Emily Watson, Eileen Walsh
Rating: 4/5

Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One

Director: Christopher McQuarrie
Stars: Tom Cruise, Hayley Atwell, Pom Klementieff, Simon Pegg
Rating: 4/5

Company Profile

Name: Direct Debit System
Started: Sept 2017
Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
Investors: Elaine Jones
Number of employees: 8

MATCH INFO

Brescia 1 (Skrinia og, 76)

Inter Milan 2 (Martinez 33, Lukaku 63)

 

Veil (Object Lessons)
Rafia Zakaria
​​​​​​​Bloomsbury Academic

Roll of honour 2019-2020

Dubai Rugby Sevens
Winners: Dubai Hurricanes
Runners up: Bahrain

West Asia Premiership
Winners: Bahrain
Runners up: UAE Premiership

UAE Premiership
}Winners: Dubai Exiles
Runners up: Dubai Hurricanes

UAE Division One
Winners: Abu Dhabi Saracens
Runners up: Dubai Hurricanes II

UAE Division Two
Winners: Barrelhouse
Runners up: RAK Rugby

AIDA RETURNS

Director: Carol Mansour

Starring: Aida Abboud, Carol Mansour

Rating: 3.5./5

MATCH DETAILS

Liverpool 2

Wijnaldum (14), Oxlade-Chamberlain (52)

Genk 1

Samatta (40)

 

How it works

Booklava works on a subscription model. On signing up you receive a free book as part of a 30-day-trial period, after which you pay US$9.99 (Dh36.70) per month to gain access to a library of books and discounts of up to 30 per cent on selected titles. You can cancel your subscription at any time. For more details go to www.booklava.com

Women’s T20 World Cup Asia Qualifier

ICC Academy, November 22-28

UAE fixtures
Nov 22, v Malaysia
Nov 23, v Hong Kong
Nov 25, v Bhutan
Nov 26, v Kuwait
Nov 28, v Nepal

ICC T20I rankings
14. Nepal
17. UAE
25. Hong Kong
34. Kuwait
35. Malaysia
44. Bhutan

UAE squad
Chaya Mughal (captain), Natasha Cherriath, Samaira Dharnidharka, Kavisha Egodage, Mahika Gaur, Priyanjali Jain, Suraksha Kotte, Vaishnave Mahesh, Judit Peter, Esha Rohit, Theertha Satish, Chamani Seneviratne, Khushi Sharma, Subha Venkataraman

Founders: Ines Mena, Claudia Ribas, Simona Agolini, Nourhan Hassan and Therese Hundt

Date started: January 2017, app launched November 2017

Based: Dubai, UAE

Sector: Private/Retail/Leisure

Number of Employees: 18 employees, including full-time and flexible workers

Funding stage and size: Seed round completed Q4 2019 - $1m raised

Funders: Oman Technology Fund, 500 Startups, Vision Ventures, Seedstars, Mindshift Capital, Delta Partners Ventures, with support from the OQAL Angel Investor Network and UAE Business Angels

Tentative schedule of 2017/18 Ashes series

1st Test November 23-27, The Gabba, Brisbane

2nd Test December 2-6, Adelaide Oval, Adelaide

3rd Test Dcember 14-18, Waca, Perth

4th Test December 26-30, Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne

5th Test January 4-8, Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney

Dubai works towards better air quality by 2021

Dubai is on a mission to record good air quality for 90 per cent of the year – up from 86 per cent annually today – by 2021.

The municipality plans to have seven mobile air-monitoring stations by 2020 to capture more accurate data in hourly and daily trends of pollution.

These will be on the Palm Jumeirah, Al Qusais, Muhaisnah, Rashidiyah, Al Wasl, Al Quoz and Dubai Investment Park.

“It will allow real-time responding for emergency cases,” said Khaldoon Al Daraji, first environment safety officer at the municipality.

“We’re in a good position except for the cases that are out of our hands, such as sandstorms.

“Sandstorms are our main concern because the UAE is just a receiver.

“The hotspots are Iran, Saudi Arabia and southern Iraq, but we’re working hard with the region to reduce the cycle of sandstorm generation.”

Mr Al Daraji said monitoring as it stood covered 47 per cent of Dubai.

There are 12 fixed stations in the emirate, but Dubai also receives information from monitors belonging to other entities.

“There are 25 stations in total,” Mr Al Daraji said.

“We added new technology and equipment used for the first time for the detection of heavy metals.

“A hundred parameters can be detected but we want to expand it to make sure that the data captured can allow a baseline study in some areas to ensure they are well positioned.”

UAE currency: the story behind the money in your pockets

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