11 décembre 2016 ~ 0 Commentaire

Ex-exotic dancer’s lawsuit against Dallas Cowboys owner dismissed

The sexual harassment lawsuit filed by a former exotic dancer against Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones seeking as much as $1 million in damages has been dismissed, court papers filed on Thursday said. An attorney for Jones had denied the accusations made against one of the best-known team owners in the National Football League and called the lawsuit a « money grab. » The plaintiff, Jana Weckerly, alleged in the lawsuit that Jones fondled her breasts and genitals and forced her to touch his. She also alleged that he made her watch as he received oral sex from another woman in a Dallas hotel room in 2009. In the dismissal agreement signed by attorneys for both parties and a Dallas judge, Weckerly will « take nothing » from Jones or the Cowboys. The agreement also states that Weckerly’s claims are « barred by the applicable statutes of limitations. » Attorneys for all involved were not immediately available for comment on the dismissal. « Ms. Weckerly’s allegations were false. This case is over, » Levi McCathern II, the attorney representing the Cowboys and Jones said in a brief statement sent to The Dallas Morning News. (Reporting by Marice Richter; Writing by Jon Herskovitz and Peter Cooney). From swashbuckling goals to inglorious exits, on-field shenanigans to sideline lunacy, the World Cup in Brazil has been one of the most remarkable of recent times. Here are 10 picks from a host of memorable moments: No. 1 – THE « MINEIRAZO » This was the tournament where Brazil were supposed to shake off the historical scars of the 1950 « Maracanazo » when Uruguay defeated them 2-1 in Rio de Janeiro’s famous stadium the last time they hosted the World Cup. Yet they never even made it to the Maracana this time, collapsing horribly to Germany 7-1 in the semi-final in Belo Horizonte’s Mineirao stadium. It would be hard to pinpoint one pivotal moment as goal-after-goal flew past the imploding Brazilians. But it was perhaps when Toni Kroos’s left-foot shot put the Germans 3-0 up in the 24th minute that the horror really set in for the capacity crowd and millions of Brazilians watching round the nation. Five goals went in during a 19-minute spell of the first half in Brazil’s record World Cup defeat and their first loss at home in 64 competitive matches since 1975. The « Mineirazo » will haunt Brazil forever. No. 2 – THE BITE Uruguay striker Luis Suarez had been the two-goal hero of a 2-1 victory over England, but he turned villain in the next game against Italy by inexplicably biting defender Giorgio Chiellini towards the end. The Italians were still complaining when Uruguay scored from a corner to win 1-0 and reach the last 16. Suarez’s joy at victory was short-lived, though, as his action touched off worldwide controversy and brought a nine-match ban from playing for Uruguay and four-month prohibition from football – the toughest sanction ever given at a World Cup. After initially clutching his teeth on the pitch as if he was the injured party, Suarez eventually apologized and Chiellini forgave him. The incident did not stop Suarez’s 81 million euro ($111 million) move to Barcelona. No. 3 – THE WINNER Bayern Munich midfielder Mario Goetze had been having a disappointing tournament for Germany and was dropped in the latter stages. But that all changed after he came on as a substitute in the final against Argentina. In the 113th minute, with the score at 0-0 and penalties looming after a tense game where both sides missed good chances, the 22-year-old creative midfielder received a cross from Andre Schuerrle. He controlled it on his chest and slammed it past Argentina’s Sergio Romero to win the game, send his homeland into raptures and write himself into football history. No. 4 – THE FOUL Brazil’s World Cup effectively ended when Colombia defender Juan Zuniga charged into their marquee striker Neymar with a raised knee during a rough quarter-final. Neymar, whose four goals and exuberant play had carried the team, left in tears on a stretcher with a broken vertebra. Brazil won that game 2-1, but the emotionally fragile team collapsed afterwards, losing 7-1 to Germany in the semi-final and 3-0 to the Netherlands in the third-place playoff. The fans’ chanting of Neymar’s name and the team’s holding aloft of his number 10 shirt prior to kickoff against Germany were moving at the time but look hollow in retrospect given the trauma that followed. No. 5 – THE RECORD Veteran Germany striker Miroslav Klose’s close-range strike against Brazil in the semi-final after 23 minutes made him the tournament’s all-time leading scorer with 16 goals. The 36-year-old had moved level with former Brazil striker Ronaldo on 15 when he scored in Germany’s 2-2 draw against Ghana in the group stage. The best German striker of his generation, Klose has played in four World Cups and now scored 71 goals in 136 appearances for his country. The mild-mannered, Polish-born Klose, who is also a trained carpenter, was typically modest about his achievement. « Miroslav Klose in the club of 16 and everyone’s welcome to join, » he said afterwards. No. 6 – THE GOAL While much of the world had focused on Brazil’s Neymar, Argentina’s Lionel Messi and Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo as potential standout performers, it was Colombia’s attacking midfielder James Rodriguez who arguably overshadowed them all with consistently brilliant performances – and six goals – in his nation’s dream run to a first quarter-final. His best moment came against Uruguay in the last 16 when the ball arched towards him 25 meters out. Rodriguez had the presence of mind to glance over his shoulder to check the positioning of the goalkeeper before chesting the ball down and, in one fluid movement, turning and firing a left-foot volley in off the underside of the crossbar. The Netherlands’ Robin Van Persie, scorer of an extraordinary « salmon »-like header against Spain, and Australia’s Tim Cahill, who smacked in a fantastic volley against the Netherlands, may disagree, but for most pundits Rodriguez’s was the goal of the tournament. No. 7 – THE DANCE No-one shakes it like the Colombians. Their joyous, hip-swaying goal celebrations will live long in the memory, much as Cameroon’s did back in 1990. It was left back Pablo Armero, with a history of dancing for club and country, who led the way after scoring against Greece in their opening game in the fifth minute. The rhythmic 27-year-old raced to his bench, crossed himself, called team mates around, and then led a clearly rehearsed but nonetheless fabulous dance of salsa steps and raised arms that quickly went viral back home. The dances kept on coming as Colombia fired in 12 goals and reached the last 16 for the first time since 1990. Only Ghana ran Colombia a close second with their moves, striker Asamoah Gyan leading the team in a leg-cocking ‘chicken’ dance after scoring against Germany. No. 8 – THE HEAD-BUTT Cameroon’s miserable World Cup hit a shocking low when defender Benoit Assou-Ekotto head-butted team mate Benjamin Moukandjo towards the end of their 4-0 capitulation to Croatia. Players from both teams intervened to halt the shameful scuffle that symbolized the chaos in the ‘Indomitable Lions’. « Such behavior is really disgusting, it won’t do, it’s impossible, » said coach Volker Finke. Earlier in the same game, midfielder Alex Song was sent off for bizarrely elbowing Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic in the back right in front of the referee. And all that after a team strike over money prior to departure for Brazil, and injury to captain Samuel Eto’o. No. 9 – THE PRAYERS Algeria ended their 28-year-old wait for a World Cup goal when Sofiane Feghouli converted a spot-kick in the 25th minute to give them a 1-0 lead over Belgium. The players, representing the only Arab nation at the World Cup, wore their Muslim faith proudly by kneeling in prayer to give thanks for the goal. The north Africans lost that game 2-1, but went on to score another six goals in a surprisingly fruitful campaign which ended with a 2-1 loss to Germany in the last 16. No. 10 – THE CROSSBAR In the dying seconds of extra time with the score at 1-1 in their last-16 game, Chile striker Mauricio Pinilla hit a thunderous shot that rattled off the crossbar to leave Brazil counting their lucky stars as they went to penalties. Chile lost the shootout, but had Pinilla’s shot gone just slightly lower, he would have become a national hero by overturning a painful history of defeats by Brazil, who also knocked them out of the 2010, 1998 and 1962 World Cups. Back home, Pinilla had a tattoo of the shot made on his back with the caption: « One Centimetre from Glory. » Chileans say the crossbar haunts their sleep. (Additional reporting by Gideon Long and Erik Kirschbaum in Brazil, Alexandra Ulmer in Chile, editing by Ed Osmond). Rules officials at the Players Championship, in a stunning U-turn on Sunday, rescinded the two-stroke penalty imposed on Justin Rose following Saturday’s third round « after further review. » U.S. Open champion Rose was penalized after his ball was revealed, by high definition television, to have moved very slightly just off the back of the 18th green after he had placed his wedge behind it. His one-under-par 71 was subsequently adjusted to a 73 and he had been prepared to go into Sunday’s final round at the TPC Sawgrass on five-under 211, seven strokes behind co-leaders Martin Kaymer of Germany and American Jordan Spieth. However, a new rule states a penalty can be waived if a ball movement was not « reasonably discernible to the naked eye at the time » and was identified only through enhanced technology. After further consultation on Sunday, the game’s governing bodies and PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem decided that this was indeed the case, and Rose’s 73 reverted back to a 71. « It was determined that without the use of sophisticated technology, it was not reasonably discernible to the naked eye that the ball had left its original position and had come to rest in its original place, » the PGA Tour said in a statement. « Thus, the player’s determination that the ball had not moved was deemed to be conclusive and the penalty does not apply in this situation. Having reached this decision, the committee immediately notified Rose and rescinded the two-stroke penalty. » The initial penalty was imposed after Englishman Rose was preparing to play a chip shot from 20 feet away but, as he addressed his ball, he felt the ground underneath give way and he immediately backed off. He was convinced the ball had not oscillated but subsequent television replays confirmed via magnification that there had been a slight move – a « quarter of a dimple, » according to Rose – toward the toe of his sand wedge. Both Rose and his playing partner, Sergio Garcia of Spain, looked up at a replay on a giant television screen behind the 18th green and agreed there had been no ball movement. However, officials later reviewed the incident repeatedly on video in the television compound and Rose was given a one-stroke penalty for his ball moving at address and a further stroke for not replacing the ball after it had moved. After being told on Sunday that his two-stroke penalty had been rescinded, Rose told the PGA Tour: « I was good with the way everything played out; I want to play by the rules. « But I was reading an article in the evening and the rule states — and I’m paraphrasing — if a player can’t discern whether the ball moved or not it’s deemed not to have moved. « I sort of scratched my head and said that’s exactly what happened to me and yet I was docked two. But obviously all the governing bodies … got together overnight to talk about it. » Following the unexpected rules U-turn, Rose teed off in the final round at seven under, just five strokes off the pace. (Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Frank Pingue).

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