Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant says he guarantees that the struggling Lakers will make the playoffs and be a force to be reckoned with once they secure a playoff spot.“It’s not a question of if we make the playoffs. We will,” Bryant said in an interview with Sports Illustrated that was published on Thursday. “And when we get there, I have no fear of anyone — Oklahoma City, San Antonio, Denver … whoever. I have zero nervousness about that.”Bryant is highly confident despite the Lakers being in 10th spot in the Western Conference standings. The Lakers currently trail the Houston Rockets by 3½ games for the eighth spot. They are 26-29, but have won six of their last nine games, including a 113-99 victory over the Boston Celtics Wednesday night.After losing to the Miami Heat earlier this month 107-97, which most believed at the beginning of the season would be a preview of the NBA Finals, Bryant used the loss as a confidence booster to resurrect what has been a horrendous season.But Bryant acknowledged that the Lakers showed positive signs in their loss to the Heat.“And part of the reason I have that confidence is the Miami game,” Bryant said. “We had control of the game. That was no fluke. We were playing very, very well. We were reading the defense, making the pass.”Bryant quickly conceded that the Heat took control of the game due to the play of Lebron James and Dwayne Wade.“OK, they have two great players [James and Wade] who scored eight straight buckets and took control of the game,” Bryant said. “But we were right there. We can do it.”Despite Bryant saying he guarantees making the playoffs, he admitted that it will take a team effort for them to reach the playoffs and make a deep run.The Lakers will host the Portland Trail Blazers Friday night, hours after a private funeral will be held for former owner Jerry Buss, who died on Tuesday at the age of 80. They have a great opportunity to climb the standings as they begin an eight-game stretch in which five of their opponents have losing records. read more

John Isner became the top-ranked American male tennis player by playing his best tennis at home. He wins more than two-thirds of his matches in the U.S., but just half elsewhere. Tennis writers have portrayed Isner’s strength at home as a weakness abroad. But in his sport, where players set large parts of their own schedules, displaying a repeatable competitive advantage is an opportunity, not a liability.1Unlike, say, in the NBA, where an Eastern Conference team that struggles out west can’t replace trips to California with more home dates.Even as he’s pledged to solve his road woes, Isner has filled his calendar with U.S. events. His home-court advantage has helped him rise this month from the world’s No. 13 to No. 10. A couple of weeks ago at a tournament in Indian Wells, Calif., Isner reached the semifinals, where he took a set off No. 2 Novak Djokovic. This week in Miami, he reached the round of 16 but lost on Tuesday to No. 7 Tomas Berdych. In two weeks, Isner will seek to defend his title in Houston.These wouldn’t have passed for spectacular American results when Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras ruled the sport in the 1990s, or even when Andy Roddick and James Blake took up residence in the top 10 during the last decade. These days, though, pretty good is as good as it gets for American men in tennis. None of Isner’s peers got past the round of 64 at either tournament this month; he was the last American man at each by at least two rounds. And no other American man is ranked in the top 60 in the world. (There’s little reason to hope for better things from the next generation: No American ranks in the top 20 in either the under-20 or under-21 world rankings.)Isner is famous among casual fans for his role in the longest match ever played, which he won over Nicolas Mahut at Wimbledon in 2010, with the basketball-like 70-68 score in the fifth set. But he’s done his best work at home. Fourteen of his 17 career finals and six of his eight career titles have come in the United States. He’s been an entirely average player at the tour level2This means matches that count towards a player’s official match record: matches at Grand Slam tournaments, in Davis Cup matches and at ATP World Tour events. away from the U.S., winning 51 percent of his matches. At American events, he’s won 69 percent.“I always play my best in the United States,” Isner said at a press conference in Indian Wells. “A lot of times, especially in Europe, I have ‑‑ you know, I haven’t had great results at all.” He was at a loss to explain why, offering perhaps a lack of toughness at overseas tournaments. “There is no reason I can’t have a result like this outside of the U.S.,” he said.The reasons for Isner’s home advantage are varied. The obvious suspects, like the surface he’s playing on and the strength of his opponents, don’t fully explain it. A lot of it comes down to Isner himself.It’s true that much of Isner’s home success has come against weak competition. He has thrived at smaller U.S. tournaments that are optional for top players, who mostly live in Europe and don’t bother to make the trip. These events account for all of his U.S. titles and all but two of his U.S. finals. Just 6 percent of his matches at those events have come against top 10 players, none ranked in the top four. The relative weakness of his competition thanks to these events can be seen in the median ranking of his opponents over the last year: just 64, making his the softest schedule of any player in the top 35 in the world rankings.Isner also gets to play on hard courts, his favorite surface, at most of the U.S. events where he chooses to play. Just two are played on other surfaces: Houston, on clay; and Newport, R.I., on grass.These factors alone don’t explain Isner’s U.S. success, though. I pulled his career match record and ran a logistic regression, controlling for surface,3Isner has played 32 matches on grass, 66 matches on clay and 256 matches on hard courts. I separately ran the regression with each surface and also combining hard and grass, since so few matches are played on grass. The results were essentially the same. the ranking of his opponent4Technically I used the logarithm of his opponent’s ranking, since there is a much wider gap between the No. 1 and No. 10 players in the world — and therefore the probability of beating each one — than there is between the No. 10 and No. 100 players. and the value of each match, in ranking points.5The goal was to check whether Isner plays better in higher-leverage matches, those that count for more — i.e. matches in big tournaments, or later rounds of smaller ones. If he does, this effect could be confused with a preference for home courts. That’s because many of his U.S. events have weak fields, pitting Isner against early-round opponents whom he’d likely beat anywhere. That gives him more high-stakes home matches, so if he thrives in high-stakes matches, it might help explain his home advantage.To calculate the leverage of each match, I took the number of ranking points Isner would receive if he lost the match and subtracted it from the number he would get if he won, then lost the subsequent match. The result is roughly the value of the match, as prize money rises with ranking points and the points also determine a player’s subsequent seedings and affect his earning potential. The calculation is complicated by the ATP’s change in ranking points in 2009, so it isn’t exact, but since most of Isner’s tour-level matches came after 2008, the effect is small. Even after controlling for these factors, Isner remains a homecoming king. Surface, it turns out, isn’t a statistically significant driver of his success. Nor is the value of winning the match. His opponent’s ranking is highly significant. But independent of these factors, a 50-50 match for Isner away from home becomes a match he’ll win two out of three times in the U.S.Tennis isn’t usually associated with strong home-court effects, because of its individual and international nature. Many events draw fans from across the globe, who cheer for players from countries other than their own. And most players get few chances to play at home outside of the Davis Cup, the partisan international team competition that provides a rare home-court advantage in tennis. A popular explanation for home advantage in many other sports — that officials are influenced by partisan crowds — doesn’t translate to tennis because electronic line-call review at the sport’s top levels has greatly reduced the potential influence of subjective calls on match outcomes.Perhaps Isner thrives so much at home because of his background in college tennis, a level of competition where the team is primary. Isner starred at the University of Georgia and loves college team sports, spending much of a press conference last Saturday in Miami breaking down his NCAA men’s basketball tournament bracket. Isner counts on support from American crowds, and was taken aback by U.S. Open fans’ cheers for his opponent, Frenchman Gael Monfils, last summer.Isner lamented his inconsistency away from home in that Indian Wells press conference, and he’d naturally rather do as well outside the U.S. as he does in it. But if he had to choose between his unbalanced current record and, say, maintaining the same win probability everywhere, he should opt for the status quo. Ranking points and prize money nearly double at each stage of a tournament, rewarding players who alternate finals with first-round exits over players who consistently lose in the second round.6We can illustrate this by imagining a simplified five-tournament sequence in which each tournament has 32 players and five rounds. Points and prize money double each round, from one point and $1 for a first-round exit up to 32 points and $32 for a title.Player A, with one title and four first-round losses, would pick up 32 points and $32 for the title, and an additional four points and $4 for the other four tournaments, for a total haul of 36 points and $36. His record would be 5-4.Player B, with five quarterfinal exits, would get four points and $4 in each tournament, for a total of 20 points and $20 — barely half the yield of Player A, despite a superior win-loss record of 10-5.So inconsistency in tennis is good. Even better is predictable inconsistency. A player who doesn’t know when he’ll thrive can’t plan around it. Someone who does best at clay-court events can schedule as many as he can fit in. A player who plays best at home ought to schedule as many home tournaments as possible. Isner has learned that lesson. He has reaped the benefits of a tournament calendar that still features a significant number of U.S. events, even as players from other countries have ascended in the rankings.In addition to the U.S. Open and the mandatory events in Indian Wells, Miami and Cincinnati, Isner had 10 ATP events in the U.S. to choose from in 2007 and 2008, his first two years on tour. That number declined to nine, then eight and then, this year, seven. But the decline in American men’s talent has been even steeper during that time, making ranking points at those events low-hanging fruit for Isner. Combine the easy fields with his home-court preference, and Isner finds lots of success in places such as Atlanta, Winston Salem, N.C., and Houston — even as events he played earlier in his career in Indianapolis, Las Vegas, San Jose, Calif., and New Haven, Conn., have vanished.Early in his career, Isner didn’t choose so well for himself. In his first two years on tour, he opted to play just three of his 10 non-mandatory events in the U.S. But from 2009 to 2013, he managed to play 29 of his 53 optional events in the U.S., even though only one-fifth of such events took place there. Last year, the U.S. hosted eight of these events, and Isner played in seven. He reached the semifinals of six and the finals of three, winning twice.Isner has taken advantage of his home-court preference more wisely than his peer and frequent doubles partner, Sam Querrey. I ran the same analysis on Querrey, the second-ranked American man today. For Querrey, too, surface and leverage weren’t significant. He also showed a significant home-court advantage, though the effect was smaller and less significant than for Isner.7A 50-50 match away from the U.S. for Querrey would turn into a match he’d win 62 percent of the time at home. Yet after playing almost exclusively at home in his rookie year on tour, Querrey has opted to play events away from the U.S. almost as often as home tournaments, averaging one more optional road trip per year than Isner.Perhaps many players would show a strong, significant home advantage if they had the chance. None of the world’s top five players gets more than two or three home events each year. Players from the other Grand Slam-hosting countries — the U.K., France and Australia — have a few more opportunities. But those countries combined have about the same number of tournaments as the U.S.Tennis’s general move away from the U.S., and Isner’s impending 29th birthday, might keep him from entering as many home events in the future. He’s compensating by making more of his opportunities and stepping up at the bigger U.S. events, such as this month’s strong runs and his finals in Cincinnati last year and in Indian Wells the year before that. If Isner can keep improving at the big U.S. events, he won’t have to worry about getting better away from home. read more

Our projections surmise that it will ultimately take about 44 victories to earn a spot in the Western Conference playoffs. In order to reach that win total, the Lakers would need to finish 14-6 against the NBA’s 10th-toughest remaining schedule — one that has 10 home games and 10 road ones. They still have to play the Denver Nuggets, Boston Celtics, Bucks again, Golden State Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder, among others.By contrast, the indestructible Spurs need to go only 10-9 to finish with 44 wins. They have an easier-than-average slate the rest of the way, with 11 of their last 19 games in San Antonio. The Clippers have it even better, needing a 9-9 finish to get to 44 victories, with 12 of their last 18 contests at home. (The young, fun Sacramento Kings are positioned in about the same spot as the Lakers in the standings, needing a 13-7 finish to reach 44 wins. But their remaining schedule is the third-easiest in the NBA, giving them some hope in an uphill battle.)James has faced late-season pressure to lift his team out of the doldrums each of the past few seasons. But this scenario with the Lakers stands apart, both because of how much time he missed with injury (one that now looks as if it will cost the team a playoff spot), and because of how the young supporting cast struggled to hold the rope during his absence, going 6-11. It’s one thing to coast into the postseason, the way James’s Miami and Cleveland clubs often did. But James himself hasn’t missed the playoffs in 14 years, not since the 2004-05 season.If there’s a bright side, it’s that the Lakers finally look engaged. They held Antetokounmpo to just 16 points, one of his lowest-scoring outputs in a dominant season. Youngster Brandon Ingram has showcased his scoring ability lately and was unstoppable Friday, finishing with 31 points.But the time to celebrate moral victories for this team has run out, unfortunately. A sixth-straight season of missing the playoffs — especially now, after adding one of the league’s all-time greats — would be disastrous. And after Friday’s loss, the Lakers are staring directly at that possibility. But a number of realities are setting in now. The Lakers are 4 games behind the Los Angeles Clippers for the seventh seed and 3.5 games back of the San Antonio Spurs, who own the head-to-head tiebreaker (meaning their lead is more like 4 games, since the Lakers would miss out on the postseason if they were to finish with the same record as San Antonio). Perhaps the most disheartening thing, aside from having a lot of ground to make up, is the fact that the other teams vying for the last two spots have much easier remaining schedules. UPDATE (March 3, 2019, 9:52 a.m.): The Lakers lost to the Suns on Saturday night, and have now hit a new low point, with only an 8 percent chance of making the playoffs. Barring a miracle turnaround, expect more new low points to come. On the one hand, the Los Angeles Lakers’ loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Friday night wasn’t the most surprising thing. After all, the Bucks — who staged a late run to earn the victory in Los Angeles — own the NBA’s best record and have a leading MVP candidate in Giannis Antetokounmpo.On the other hand, the Lakers surrendering a 15-2 run — and the lead — over the final three minutes of play may have put the team’s back against the wall in an entirely new way.With the defeat, LeBron James and the Lakers find themselves staring at just a 14 percent playoff probability in FiveThirtyEight’s NBA projection model, the lowest mark they’ve had all season, and a damning scenario given that there are only 20 games left in the campaign. That 14 percent figure is an enormous drop-off from even a week ago, when the club held 25 percent odds to get in. (Three weeks ago, the Lakers’ number was 41 percent.) read more

Michigan State redshirt senior quarterback Connor Cook (18) celebrates following the Spartans’ upset of the Buckeyes on Nov. 21 at Ohio Stadium. Credit: Muyao Shen | Assistant Photo EditorAll good things must come to an end, which the Buckeye faithful learned painfully as the Michigan State Spartans hit a last-second field goal to end Ohio State’s 23-game winning streak.For the final home game of the season, OSU honored its winningest senior class in history (which now currently stands at 48-4), but the Spartans played spoiler and came away with a 17-14 victory in Columbus even without star redshirt senior quarterback Connor Cook.Right away, it was clear that Michigan State was playing with a chip on its shoulder as its defense smothered the Buckeyes. OSU limped to 75 yards of total offense in the first half, luckily tied with the Spartans at 7 after a fumble recovery led to a touchdown in the second quarter.The Buckeyes came into the game with the best offense in the Big Ten but barely managed more than a fourth of their normal yardage per game as they finished with a measly 132 yards and only five first downs.Momentum came at a premium throughout the cold and rainy night as both teams struggled to find a groove. OSU caught a major break when Michigan State fumbled a punt return, which led to another touchdown and a 14-7 lead heading into the fourth quarter. However, the Buckeye offense never threatened again as the Spartan rushing attack imposed its will on a beleaguered defense in the final 15 minutes of play.For the game, the Buckeyes were led by redshirt sophomore quarterback J.T. Barrett, who finished with 46 yards passing and a touchdown, as well as another 44 yards on the ground.  Junior running back Ezekiel Elliott, who came into the game with Heisman Trophy aspirations, only managed 33 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries, of which only two came in the second half.However, despite the multiple miscues and shortcomings of OSU, Michigan State’s fantastic performance should not be overlooked. The Spartans had a simple gameplan and stuck to it: stop the Buckeye rushing attack, impose their will through their own rushing attack and own time of possession. Michigan State finished with 203 yards rushing for game, led by redshirt sophomore running back Gerald Holmes with 65 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries. Redshirt junior quarterback Tyler O’Connor stepped into the spot of Cook and also performed efficiently, passing for 89 yards and a touchdown on 7-of-12 passing with another 25 yards added on the ground.With the victory, Michigan State took control of first place in the Big Ten East, and will play in the Big Ten Championship Game as long as it defeats Penn State next week. OSU, meanwhile, can still play in the Big Ten Championship Game if the Spartans get upset and the Buckeyes are able to bounce back and take care of business against archrival Michigan next week in Ann Arbor. By the numbers:108,975: The number of fans who braved some brutal weather to cheer on the Buckeyes at Ohio Stadium, a new attendance record.48: The amount of wins by the senior class at OSU, the most in any four-year stretch in Buckeye history.4: The amount of losses suffered by Urban Meyer after four seasons at the helm of the Scarlet and Gray.2: Of those four losses, two have come at the hands of Mark Dantonio and the Michigan State Spartans.1: Urban Meyer finally suffered his first regular-season defeat in the Big Ten Conference after starting 30-0 as a Big Ten coach.2.93: The amount of yards OSU averaged per play on Saturday, the fewest it has since Meyer took over. 86: The total number of rushing yards the Buckeyes had against the Spartans. It is the lowest total OSU has registered inside Ohio Stadium since Oct. 1, 2011 against — Michigan State. read more

Trent Barter contributed to this story. The NCAA has formally notified Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee of its intent to obtain documents regarding the investigation of football coach Jim Tressel and six players for selling memorabilia, receiving improper benefits and failing to report the violations. The NCAA says the allegations are considered “potential major violations of NCAA legislation” and that the university may request that the major violations be considered secondary, with supporting evidence. The NCAA is requesting each allegation be confirmed or denied with supporting evidence. The university must compile all requested documents and respond to the allegations by July 5. Gee, Tressel and OSU athletic director Gene Smith are scheduled to meet with the NCAA Committee on Infractions on Aug. 12. John Bruno, faculty athletics representative, and Doug Archie, director of compliance, are also requested at the meeting. In the letter dated April 21, the committee wrote to Gee that it “is most interested in your presentation.” The athletic department said it has no further comment during the response phase. If the committee finds the alleged violations occurred, penalties will be assessed based on Bylaw 19.5.2. Sanctions could be as severe as vacating OSU’s wins from the 2010 season. However, the 2011 Sugar Bowl victory will not be vacated, as the NCAA reinstated the athletes for that game on the basis that the athletes “did not receive adequate rules education during the time period the violations occurred,” said Kevin Lennon, NCAA vice president of academic and membership affairs. Tressel could face termination of employment, and the program could suffer losses of scholarships and off-campus recruiting, according to the bylaw. Quarterback Terrelle Pryor, offensive lineman Mike Adams, running back Dan Herron, wide receiver DeVier Posey and defensive lineman Solomon Thomas are suspended for the first five games of the 2011 season for selling game-worn memorabilia and awards and receiving free tattoos. Tressel will join them for the first five games of the season. He also faces a $250,000 fine. Josephine Potuto, a University of Nebraska professor in constitutional law, served on the NCAA Committee of Infractions from 2006–08 and chaired the committee in 2007 and 2008. “It’s very unusual for the infractions committee to reject the school’s penalties,” she said, “but in every infractions case I know of, the committee imposed further penalties.” read more

Lantern file photoOhio State student-athletes are showing their brain power in the Big Ten.A conference-high total of 74 Buckeyes from 28 sports were named to the 2013 Big Ten Distinguished Scholars list, as released by the Big Ten.To be named to the list, those letter winners in at least their second year at their respective school must post a minimum grade-point average of 3.7 or higher in the previous academic year.There were a total of nine Buckeyes who earned a 4.0 GPA last year including senior Derek Blevins (track and field), senior Aaron Craft (men’s basketball), then-senior Adam Homan (football), redshirt sophomore Randy Languis (wrestling), redshirt junior Michael Newburger (gymnastics), senior Melissa Rennie (softball), redshirt senior Max Stearns (fencing), sophomore Gavin Trebilcock (swimming and diving) and junior Tim Wetzel (baseball).Craft is one of two conference basketball players to be named distinguished scholar for the year. He also was named the 2013 Academic All-America of the Year in the sport. Homan is one of three Big Ten football players to post a 4.0 GPA.OSU’s women’s swimming and diving program held the most members of any squad with eight, and were followed by field hockey, men’s volleyball and men’s swimming and diving, who all had five. read more

Ohio State redshirt junior guard Kam Williams (15) and sophomore guard C.J. Jackson walk down the floor late in the second half against Nebraska on Feb. 18 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Alexa Mavrogianis | Photo EditorExcitement and uncertainty. If there were two words to describe near-universal opinions from everyone about the Ohio State men’s basketball team, those two words would probably fit best.In addition to a coaching change with Chris Holtmann being hired as head coach, the roster has experienced a high degree of turnover. The Buckeyes lost three of their five starters from a season ago while adding three touted recruits and gaining a healthy redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop.The uncertainty starts in the head coach’s office as Holtmann said he knows who only two of his five starters will be when the team kicks off its season with an exhibition game against Wooster at 4 p.m. on Nov. 5 at the Schottenstein Center.“[Senior forward] Jae’Sean Tate is going to be in [the starting lineup], Keita Bates-Diop is going to be in it,” Holtmann said in an interview with The Lantern Wednesday. “After that, I’m still trying to figure out where to go from there.“I think we have multiple guys that can play and I think we’ll have a fairly fluid starting lineup throughout the year. That happens when you have eight to 10 guys that can potentially all start a game for you.”Ohio State then-sophomore guard C.J. Jackson attempts a shot over Indiana’s Thomas Bryant on March 4 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Mason Swires | Former Assistant Photo EditorThe only other position Holtmann would go so far as to name a favorite in was at point guard, where junior C.J. Jackson was called the “likely starter.” Jackson being the likely starter should come as no surprise as he is the only true point guard on the roster.  A heavy weight will be added to Jackson’s shoulders if he is asked to be the on-court leader at point guard. Though he appeared in all 32 games for the Buckeyes last season, he started only nine games and averaged just 5.6 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game. Holtmann said he has seen steady improvements out of Jackson since hired in June, but said he still needs to learn how to keep a cool head even he is dealt with some struggles.“I’ve challenged [Jackson] to be a little more physical, to kind of grow in his areas of physicality and toughness and he’s embraced that,” Holtmann said. “Our biggest challenge with C.J. has been not to get too frustrated with himself because he’s going to have to play through mistakes this year because the ball’s going to be in his hands a lot, and he’s going to play an important role and he’s going to have to stay with the right approach.”Jackson being the only natural point guard is a clear sign of the dire lack of depth the team possesses at the position. Holtmann said he believes both Tate and redshirt senior Andrew Dakich could play at the one if called upon by the team. However, Tate is more of a wing and Dakich played just 203 collegiate minutes before transferring to Ohio State. And, in prior seasons, he was more of a bench player.The depth is not much more improved at the shooting guard position either. Freshman Musa Jallow and redshirt senior Kam Williams are natural shooting guards and are both unlikely to see much time at the point. Jallow is also a freshman playing college basketball in what would have been his senior year of high school — he reclassified over the summer and committed to Ohio State — and Williams was inconsistent last season.“We are thin in the backcourt, we know that,” Holtmann said. “I think that’s well documented right, everybody who knows our team knows that people reflect on the point guard position, but we’re thin at the two.”As for the roles of the trio of highly touted freshmen, Holtmann has yet to devise a full plan for what to do with them. The aforementioned Jallow will be able to play both shooting guard and small forward, while freshman Kaleb Wesson will provide the Buckeyes with a low-post player who could receive starting minutes at both center and power forward. Freshman Kyle Young is a big man who has the positional versatility to provide the Buckeyes with depth at both forward and potentially guard. The flexibility of the young players gives Holtmann options when examining ways to fit them into his lineup. “I think all three are going to play in every game,” Holtmann said. “I think they’ll all play significant roles. And when I say significant roles, I think they’re going to be in our top nine or 10 in our rotation, which is a significant role as a freshman. I think it’ll be varying degrees based on how guys develop and our needs for the relative to their position, but all three are ready to help us.”The starting five is made all the more uncertain by the fact the team is currently dealing with a handful of injuries. Though Bates-Diop was listed as one of the starters, Holtmann said he has a knee injury. Wesson and Young each are also dealing with ailments as the former has a sprained ankle and the latter had his tonsils removed. Holtmann added that all three “have missed significant days of practice.”“That slows you down a little bit, but you know, it’s nothing that is going to keep them out for a significant time and we’re all back and healthy right now,” Holtmann said.Though clouded with uncertainty, Holtmann’s squad has the first-year head coach excited to begin the season and see what players will step up. “We certainly have some new faces and some young people that we’ll need to grow into new roles,” Holtmann said. “But I’m excited about the potential of this group and I see those things.” read more

first_imgProstate cancer is one of the most common forms of cancerCredit:Alamy Prostate cancer treatment can involve hormone therapyCredit:Alamy Co-author Dr Kevin Nead, from the University of Pennsylvania, US, said: “I was surprised at how ubiquitous the effects on all types of dementia were, but I would definitely not alter clinical care based on our results.”He said more research was needed to look at the link between ADT and dementia and identify what kinds of patients might be most at risk.Male hormones are known to play a role in the health and growth of neurons, which may help explain the association, said the scientists.Another type of treatment blocks the action of testosterone on tumours rather than cutting off supplies of the hormone.There is no suggestion that taking these drugs, known as anti-androgens, increases the risk of dementia.Dr Matthew Hobbs, deputy director of research at the charity Prostate Cancer UK said: “Although this research suggests that there may be a link between hormone therapy and dementia, it’s very hard to draw clear cut conclusions from studies like these and further research is needed to confirm the findings.”Men having treatment for prostate cancer are likely to be living with other health problems which may also increase their risk of dementia. No man should stop taking hormone therapy based on these findings,” he said.Dr Laura Phipps of Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “This study is part of an active area of research into the role that sex hormones like testosterone could be playing in the brain in dementia. Studies like this, which take advantage of the rich data held in medical records, can be very useful for highlighting trends and potential risk factors for further research.”While these results suggest a link between androgen deprivation therapy and an increased risk of dementia, they do not show that ADT is definitely causing this increased risk. We need to better understand the impact of sex hormones in the brain in diseases like Alzheimer’s to delve deeper into the possible reasons for this link.” Man prostate  Around 47,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year in the UK, about half of whom are caught at an early stage before the disease has spread.There is currently no screening for the disease, although men are entitled to a test if they ask for one.The study, published in the journal Jama Oncology, found that men aged 70 and older, and who had been on ADT for at least 12 months, were most at risk.The most common form of ADT used in the UK is a drug called goserelin, sold under the brand name Zoladex, which is injected.It interferes with signals from the brain that instruct the testicles to make testosterone.The scientists urged prostate cancer patients receiving ADT not to change their treatment without consulting their doctors. In absolute terms, the risk is still small. Of the 1,829 patients who underwent androgen deprivation, just 7.9 per cent developed dementia.This compared with 3.5 per cent of the group not treated with ADT.Lead researcher Dr Nigam Shah, from Stanford University in the US, said: “The risk is real, and depending on the prior dementia history of the patient, we may want to consider alternative treatment.” A common prostate cancer treatment that lowers testosterone could double the chances of men developing dementia, research suggests.Androgen Deprivation Therapy (ADT) shuts down the body’s main supply of the male hormone and is a less drastic alternative to physical castration.It is a standard treatment for men whose cancers have started to spread and cannot be eliminated by surgery or radiotherapy alone.But a new study suggests there may be a serious hidden danger associated with ADT – an increased risk of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.center_img Scientists who analysed the health records of more than 9,000 patients found that when men were given ADT their chances of having dementia within five years doubled. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. ‘Men having treatment for prostate cancer are likely to be living with other health problems which may also increase their risk of dementia. No man should stop taking hormone therapy based on these findings’Dr Matthew Hobbs, Prostate Cancer UK ‘The risk is real, and depending on the prior dementia history of the patient, we may want to consider alternative treatment’ Man and scanlast_img read more

first_imgEd Balls is ready to P.A.R.T.YCredit:BBC “The difference is that the contestants my age then go home and go to bed, and the young celebrities go down to Camden or Central London and I think go through to the morning.”Really sadly, they’ve not invited me. I don’t know what it is. “I mean, there’s like this awkward moment about midnight and people sort of slip out and I sort of stand there and nobody really says goodbye because they all want to leave without people noticing. It’s really tragic.” Tameka Empson with her dance partner Gorka Marquez Melvin Odoom and Janette ManraraCredit:BBC Melvin Odoom and Janette Manrara Strictly Come Dancing voting patterns could be the result of racism, Greg Rutherford has said, as he admits fears that ethnic minority contestants have been discriminated against cannot be ruled out. Fans of the show have previously cried foul over the elimination of Naga Munchetty, Martin Odoom and Tameka Empson, warning the voting public was failing to get behind the show’s black and minority ethnic celebrities.It follows years of suspicion over voting patterns, after non-white contestants appeared to be ejected from the show despite receiving higher marks than their rivals. Rumours of racism influencing the public Strictly vote have blighted the show for years, with an almost annual discussion of voting patterns in the early rounds.The BBC has previously pointed out that the show has featured a black or mixed race winner or runner-up in all but three of the 13 previous series.“Judges judge the dancing and the dancing alone, not anything else,” a spokesman has said.  Ed Balls would like to take his new dancing skills out on the townCredit:BBC  Greg Rutherford with dance partner Natalie LoweCredit:BBC He added hopefully:  “Maybe tomorrow night’s the night? I wouldn’t mind doing it once. I’m going to talk to them. Stop excluding me!”The former politician also disclosed he had scheduled in his first spray tan of the series, having previously vowed not to fall for the all-glittering Strictly outfits. Strictly Come Dancing is aired on BBC One on Saturday at 6.35pm. “I’d like to think the British public are better than that but I honestly don’t know.  It’s entertainment, and that’s just not my world.”In athletics it doesn’t matter what colour you are, it’s just how high you jump or fast you run.”But unless you bring in every single person who voted and ask them ‘Are you racist?’ you can’t rule it out.” Ed Balls would like to take his new dancing skills out on the town  Greg Rutherford with dance partner Natalie Lowe Pasha Kovalev and Naga Munchetty Rutherford, who remains in the competition, has now said it is impossible to rule out racism as a factor, as others call the row “ludicrous”.Rutherford, who remains in the competition, told the Mirror:  “I can’t say it’s not racism, but mainly because it’s not my world. Pasha Kovalev and Naga MunchettyCredit:BBC Contestants from the 2016 series were today engaged in interviews ahead of the Saturday night show, with Rutherford confessing he had struggled to take on a sport he does not naturally excel in.Ed Balls, meanwhile, appeared on the Radio 1 breakfast show to share his anxieties after being left out of nights out by his younger celebrity rivals. “You don’t finish [filming] until 11 o’clock at night, and luckily there’s a tent with a bar so you can finally chill out,” he told host Nick Grimshaw of the weekly schedule. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Bruno Tonioli, the show’s judge, has previously said: “The so-called ‘racism row’ over Melvin, then Tameka leaving is ludicrous.”This series is so competitive every vote makes a difference. If you don’t vote you can’t moan when someone you love leaves.”Gethin Jones, who is co-host of Strictly Come Dancing‘s spin-off It Takes Two, said of the row: “I think that’s all just a bit of madness that’s got out of hand.“You can’t blame the show because it’s a public vote.” Tameka Empson with her dance partner Gorka MarquezCredit:BBC Ed Balls is ready to P.A.R.T.Ylast_img read more

first_img“We should expect reciprocal deals for Britons living in European countries, but Britain should make the first move to demonstrate goodwill.”Just 3 per cent of European citizens living in Britain are unemployed, with 51 per cent classed as employees, 9 per cent self-employed, 4 per cent students and 7 per cent retired, while 17 per cent are children, according to the report.More than a quarter of the food and drink manufacturing workforce and about 15 per cent of academics are from other EU countries, it added.The panel called for the permanent residence system, which is underpinned by EU law, to be converted into the indefinite leave to remain status available to international migrants living in the UK. Any EU citizen travelling to the UK after Theresa May triggers Article 50 should not be allowed to permanently stay in the UK after Brexit, a major inquiry concludes today.Amid growing fears of a “surge” of EU migrants travelling to the UK to take advantage of an expected amnesty, a major report by British Future calls for a “cut-off date” to ensure people coming to the UK do not simply “expect to stay after Brexit”.The inquiry, which includes both Remain and Leave MPs, calls for the three million EU migrants already here to be given an amnesty and offered permanent residence with the same health, social and educational rights as British citizens. Theresa May has so far refused to guarantee the rights of EU citizens already living in the UK, insisting that she will not do so until she has agreement from European leaders that they will do the same for British ex-pats.Around 1.2 million British nationals live in other EU countries. The report found that setting the date that Article 50 is triggered as the cut-off point would be fair and legally watertight, but would not lead to a surge in migration from across the bloc and European Economic Area nations.Gisela Stuart, a Leave campaigner and Labour MP who chaired the inquiry, said: “We determined that the triggering of Article 50 should be the cut-off date, after which EU citizens moving to the UK would not be entitled to stay permanently after Brexit. This would limit any ‘pull factor’ for EU citizens not already in the UK.”Britain should make clear at the start of the Brexit negotiations that EU citizens already here before that date can stay. This would send a clear signal about the kind of country the UK will be after Brexit and the relationship we want with Europe. Ending this worry and uncertainty, both swiftly and fairly, is not only the humane thing to doSeamus Nevin, IoD Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. But the complex and expensive process should be streamlined and costs capped, it said.Seamus Nevin, head of employment and skills policy at the Institute of Directors, said: “Businesses throughout the UK are very clear that confirming the status of EU migrants resident here is the right thing to do.”The evidence the inquiry received showed that uncertainty from valued employees about what will happen to them is tangible in workplaces across the UK. Our members can’t plan for the future or give their employees the assurances they need until government sets out its plan.”Ending this worry and uncertainty, both swiftly and fairly, is not only the humane thing to do. It is also essential to avoid major disruptions to workforce planning and business development if British companies are to be able to prepare to succeed in life outside the EU.”last_img read more

first_imgThe former prime minister says he waned to ensure academics searching for treatments are “properly funded” “We must win the battle of priorities,” he added. “Cancer research and stroke research deserve all their funding – but dementia shouldn’t be so far behind.”Dementia steals people’s lives, turns their relationships upside down, destroys their hopes and dreams.”Welcoming Mr Cameron’s appointment, Hilary Evans, Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, said that Mr Cameron had done ‘more than anyone’ to keep dementia high on the world’s agenda. “As a world leader, Mr Cameron has done more than any other to put dementia on the global agenda, driving an ambition shared by all G7 nations to find a disease-modifying treatment by 2025,” she said. “Alzheimer’s Research UK is a hugely ambitious and growing charity, uniquely set-up to tackle our greatest medical challenge. We have a clear focus on pioneering research, working with leading scientists across the UK and the world.”We are committed to bringing together the brightest minds and most innovative ideas in powerful collaborations that reach breakthroughs faster. David Cameron’s support of our work will help us continue our positive growth and further bolster our research efforts, through which we will end the fear, harm and heartbreak of dementia.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Former Prime Minister David Cameron vowed that ‘dementia is not inevitable’ as he became the new President of Alzheimer’s Research UK.Mr Cameron made dementia a focus of his time in office, and in 2012 launched Prime Minister’s Dementia Challenge which aimed to find a treatment or cure by 2025.”Tackling dementia was a major focus while I was Prime Minister, and although improvements in attention and research innovation have been rapid, it remains one of our greatest health challenges,” he said. “So I’m delighted to take up the Presidency of Alzheimer’s Research UK, an ambitious charity driving medical research to fight this devastating condition.”As well as being a world-leading research organisation, the charity is also fighting the misconceptions of dementia that persist in society. Dementia is not inevitable and research is our greatest weapon against it.”I’m committed to helping Alzheimer’s Research UK transform the lives of those affected by this life-shattering condition.”last_img read more

first_imgPatients who phone 999 are being offered a video call assessment rather than an ambulance.Video consultations using smartphone apps like Skype and FaceTime are being tested out in different areas of England for patients suffering from non-life-threatening conditions, such as falls or back pain.The calls connect the patient with paramedics and nurses who assess their condition remotely, but there have been warnings that such video consultations can be unreliable. Details of scheme were revealed by a former call handler at South Central Ambulance Service.The former 999 worker told the Daily Mail other controversial policies included refusing ambulances to those whose lives are not thought to be in immediate danger and preventing call handlers from giving medical advice to heart attack victims because of a shortage of time.A spokesman for South Central Ambulance Service said they and other trusts were trialling the video consultations, and that they gave “the clinician more information when they are assessing the patient”.The authority, which covers four regions in southern England, said the move could help offset the difficulties posed by diagnosing a patient over the phone without being able to see them.The trial began at nursing homes with frequent callers for the ambulance service.  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. However the interim chairman of the British Medical Association’s GP committee, Dr Richard Vautrey, said doctors had to “err on the side of caution” with video consultations because they do not allow for a proper physical examination. Ambulance services are coming under mounting pressure, with NHS medical director Sir Bruce Keogh saying there is a culture of “hitting the target but missing the point”. The Telegraph reported last week that victims of heart attacks and strokes could have to wait 40 minutes for an ambulance under new NHS targets.Changes to the system mean around four million calls that are currently categorised as “life-threatening” will not receive the most urgent response, as part of reforms officials say will actually mean care arrives quicker.last_img read more

first_imgWhen his father Nick broke the news of the tragedy on Facebook he said the family’s “world had fallen apart.”Paralympic champion Dame Sarah Storey described his death as “a tragic loss”.Charlie was described by his headteacher as a role model to others and who “had a bright future ahead of him”. Coroner Chris Morris recorded a narrative conclusion.He said he would be writing to the relative organisations about the lack of medical screening for junior cyclists.”It is of residual concern that British Cycling still does not routinely undertake medical evaluation or screening prior to accepting individuals on to their junior training programme,” he said.The coroner accepted it may not have changed Charlie’s fate, but he added: “All sports have a role to play in reducing the number of young deaths.” A teenage cyclist died in his sleep after pushing himself hard in intensive training, an inquest heard. Charlie Craig had been chosen to take part in an elite training programme after his potential was spotted by British Cycling chiefs.An expert cardiologist told the coroner he believed huge surges in adrenaline during intense training was likely to have caused the schoolboy to have suffered a series of heart attacks.No one had suspected he was dangerously unwell because the 15 year-old showed no obvious symptoms of coronary problems.But South Manchester Coroner’s Court was told the dedicated athlete was found dead in his bed on 20 January last year by his mother who thought he was just having a lie in. Charlie Craig with parents Sarah and Nick The son of a retired professional rider who had also had heart problems, Charlie himself never underwent the same tests as his older brother Tom, who was also an elite Team GB cyclist, because he was deemed too young.Charlie from Hayfield, Derbys, was a rider with the British Cycling Team’s Rider Route apprenticeship scheme and was highly regarded within the sport.His father Nick said Charlie had been “happy” after being invited into the elite training programme in 2016 after winning the National Trophy Cyclo-cross Series. “Charlie was committed to the programme. He was thinking about cycling as his future,” said his father. He said the teenager was “sensible” about his training regime.”For youngsters the hardest discipline to get is not to train. That’s the smart bit, knowing when you have to rest,” said Mr Craig.”I never had any concerns that Charlie was overdoing it,” he added. The teenager’s family said their “world had fallen apart” when he diedCredit:Eugene Henderson center_img Charlie Craig had huge surges in adrenalineCredit:Eugene Henderson Charlie Craig  Two months before his death Charlie complained of recurring sore throats and acid reflux. His doctor had prescribed a course of antacids and he was tested for glandular fever.He never spoke about chest pains or symptoms that would flag up any potential heart problems.Professor Sanjay Sharma, Medical Director for the London Marathon and Cardiologist for the English Institute of Sport, said: “The findings of a full-blown heart attack in a 15 year-old or previous smaller heart attacks is really very unusual, particularly when the arteries themselves look normal.”I have only seen two such cases, including Charlie’s, in the 20 years I have been dealing with young people, including athletes and people with inherited diseases,” he said.Asked what had caused these episodes he the heart may have gone into spasm due to “very high surges of adrenaline” which would co-incide with periods of intensive training. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

first_imgTogether, they are the world’s earliest figural tattoos…. Tests on a female mummy from the same period (3351-3017BC) identified what archaeologists believe to be a crooked stave, an object used in rituals of the time. As a young man, Ginger had a tattoo on his arm. So far, so ordinary. But Ginger is a 5,500-year-old Egyptian mummy, the oldest inhabitant of the British Museum’s public galleries, and the inkings represent a major scientific discovery that has pushed back evidence for tattooing in Africa by a millennium.center_img What had previously shown up as dark smudges on the mummy’s upper arm were revealed under infrared light to be two overlapping tattoos, thought to be of a wild bull and a Barbary sheep.last_img read more

first_imgPassers-by formed a human chain Passers-by formed a human chainCredit:James McGairy/Facebook All four were treated at James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.Redcar RNLI have warned against copycat rescue attempts, because it can put lives at risk.Spokesman Dave Cocks  said: “This was a sequence of events which could so easily have led to multiple deaths.”The sea at Redcar is very rough as a result of the combined effects of strong winds and a particularly high tide, and the situation ended up with four adults in trouble in the sea, all needing rescue. “It is only through good fortune that all four were rescued alive.”If you see someone in trouble, alert the lifeguards… do not enter the water yourself.”center_img The RNLI has warned would-be heroes against rescue attempts after their valiant efforts created more work for lifeguards.Rescuers had to be pulled out of the sea by volunteers, as well as the person they were trying to save, after a man fell from the slipway at Dundas Street in Redcar at 4pm on Good Friday.He was bashed by large waves close to the sea wall, and was spotted by some would-be heroes, who jumped in after him.A man he was with made the first rescue attempt, but fell in the sea. A man and a woman then tried to rescue the pair, but also ended up in peril. Members of the public managed to rescue all four by forming a human chain and pulling them out. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

A sixth person has appeared in court in connection with a suspected acid attack on a three-year-old boy.Saied Hussini appeared before magistrates in Kidderminster on Saturday charged in connection with a suspected “deliberate” assault on a three-year-old boy in Worcester.The incident happened while the youngster was in his pushchair with his mother and other children at a Home Bargains store in the Shrub Hill retail park of the city last Saturday. He suffered serious burns to his face and an arm and was discharged from hospital the following day. But it is not known whether the child will suffer long term effects as a result of his injuries. Staff and shoppers tried to help before paramedics arrived, witnesses said. The boy and his mother are now “in a place of safety”, according to prosecutors.Afghan national, Hussini was charged on Friday night with conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm with intent. The 41-year-old was arrested on Thursday night at an address in Harlesden, north London, and appeared at Kidderminster Magistrates’ Court on Saturday morning. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Police officers conducting a search of Shrub Hill Retail Park in Worcester Credit:SWNS Three of the men were arrested on Monday in Walthamstow, north east London, and two other were captured in Wolverhampton the next day.All defendants, including Hussini, were remanded in custody to appear at Worcester Crown Court on August 28. Five other men, including the injured youngster’s 39-year-old father, appeared at the same court on Wednesday, charged over the incident on July 21.Adam Cech, 27, and Jan Dudi, 25, both from Birmingham, Norbert Pulko, 22, from London, and Jabar Paktia, 41, from Wolverhampton, all appeared at Kidderminster Magistrates’ Court alongside the fifth man, who cannot be named for legal reasons. Police officers conducting a search of Shrub Hill Retail Park in Worcester  read more

A city worker has been banned from every pub in Greater London after a judge ruled he cannot handle his drink.Robert Tolley, a father-of-two who works as a divisional director at EC3 Brokers, had been drinking for six hours at a lunchtime leaving party before he launched an unprovoked racist attack on two members of the public.A court heard he bumped into Sheikh Ahmed and Sayema Khanom at Liverpool Street Station.While on an escalator, he pushed Mr Ahmed and apparently threw a punch in his direction. Tolley then called Mr Ahmed a “brown dog” and Ms Khanom a “Kumar prostitute”.Speaking at Westminster magistrates’ court, District Judge Snow said: “Since you cannot control yourself while you are drinking, we are going to try and curb your drinking.”Tolley has been told he cannot enter any pub, bar or nightclub in Greater London or Wiltshire, where Tolley lives, for a year.Greater London encompasses the 32 London boroughs as well as the City of London. The Campaign for Real Ale says there are 3,823 pubs in this area. Marcia Evans, prosecuting, said: “On Feb 21 at about 8.15pm at Liverpool Street Station, the complainants had been exiting Bishop Gates’ exit when Mr Ahmed noticed the defendant. He was on the escalator with his partner. The defendant came quite close to her. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “He goes down the escalator, he pushes Mr Ahmed and Ms Khanom tries to intervene in the dispute. “There is a suggestion of a punch but nothing landing.”The judge added: “The aggravating features of this offence are that there were two victims here, not one, and the incident took place at a very busy central London station.“From your own point of view, the reason this is going to be dealt with by community order is because the court will not tolerate this type of offence.”Tolley, 48, of West Manton, Wilts, who said he was “deeply ashamed”, admitted two charges of racially aggravated common assault.  A spokesman for his workplace said: “EC3 Brokers first became aware of this terrible incident today and we can confirm Robert Tolley has been suspended until the conclusion of a disciplinary procedure.” read more

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A statue of pioneering suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst has been upgraded to Grade II* listed status, giving it further protection from being moved or destroyed after a long campaign from feminists.Plans earlier this year to move the figure from its position overlooking Parliament to a private univeristy sparked condemnation from women’s groups and were dubbed “an act of vandalism against women’s history” by Caroline Criado Perez, who led the successful campaign for the statue to Millicent Fawcett which was unveiled in Parliament Square this April.The statue, unveiled on March 30 1930 by then-prime minister Stanley Baldwin, has been upgraded from Grade II to Grade II* status by Historic England. This gives the Westminster statue greater protection from being altered, relocated or demolished.It was moved to its current position overlooking Parliament and was adapted to include a bronze profile of her daughter Christabel, also an active Suffragette, in 1959, and an inscription also commemorates the many other members of the WSPU.The statue has had Grade II listed status since 1970.The change marks the centenery of  women over the age of 30 being granted the right to vote in 1918 following the passing of the Representation of the People Act.Criado Perez told The Telegraph: “Earlier this year, Emmeline Pankhurst’s statue was under threat of being hidden away in the grounds of a little visited private university, miles from Parliament where she belongs.”I’m absolutely delighted that we are closing this centenary year not only having successfully shelved that ahistorical project, but with the news that the original suffragette-commissioned Pankhurst statue is finally being given the recognition it deserves.”May she stand there for another hundred years, inspiring women and girls everywhere with the message that their voices do matter, and that democracy belongs to them too.”Heritage Minister Michael Ellis added: “Emmeline Pankhurst was a pioneer of her time and was instrumental in securing votes for women.”It is a fitting tribute that at the end of this centenary year we recognise the important role she played in securing the equality we rightly enjoy today.”Pankhurst is one of the most recognisable faces of the women’s suffrage movement. She first campaigned for married women to be allowed to vote in local elections through the Women’s Franchise League which she founded in 1889, and wend on to found the much more radical 1903 WSPU which earned notoriety for its tactics including breaking windows in important buildings, arson of empty buildings and cutting phone lines.Deborah Mays, of Historic England, the body tasked with protecting buildings and monuments of national importance, said: “The statue is a tribute to Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst who were instrumental in bringing about women’s suffrage in Britain.”It is a finely crafted memorial in a significant location which bears witness to the struggle and success of the movement Pankhurst led.”It is fitting to give it a higher grade listing at the end of this centenary year.”Pankhurst is one of a small number of women whose statues have been given Grade II* listed status, with others including  include Queen Victoria, Lady Godiva and the Virgin Mary. read more

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. A plane performing an aerobatic display nosedived towards the ground and nearly crashed after a loose pen in the cockpit jammed the controls, an investigation has found.The vintage single-engine ‘Chipmunk’ aircraft was performing an aileron roll at 600 ft when the controls stopped working properly and it plummeted to just 50ft above the ground.Only by vigorously pushing the pedals in the cockpit was 49-year-old pilot Paul Green able to regain control of the plane and perform an emergency landing.A report into the incident, which took place last September close to White Waltham Airfield in Berkshire, has concluded that a partially crushed pen found in the fuselage had probably become lodged in the in the rudder control circuit, causing the 65-year-old DHC-1 Chipmunk 22 to plunge towards the ground.The Air Accident Investigation Branch said: “During an aerobatic display the aircraft failed to respond to the pilot’s control inputs due to a restriction in the rudder control circuit caused by a loose article.“The pilot reduced power and declared a MAYDAY. “A detailed inspection of the aircraft completed a few days after the event confirmed that there were no defects with the flying controls. However, a partially crushed pen was found within the fuselage. read more

Although female GPs outnumber male GPs in the NHS ,women are outnumbered two to one on the committee representing them.In an article for GP online, the two doctors said: “The time is now to blow open the lid on this outdated culture and give credence and time to those whose voices have been silenced: the lost leaders.”They said female GPs had been “sexually explicit propositioned after presenting a keynote speech,” frozen out of key events and subjected to innuendo and groping.Calling for a wholesale shift away from a sexist culture, they describe: “The squeezing of the thighs. The patting of the bottoms. The incessant nudge-nudge, wink-wink more suitably placed within a 1970s Monty Python sketch.“There must be a wholesale culture shift away from drinking and dinners, taps on the shoulder to take on roles, under-the-breath comments, factions and back-stabbing,” they write.  Dr Norris said she had avoided ‘naming and shaming’ colleagues over sexism because of fears over how she would be treated, and about how she would be perceived.In the article, they said: “Both of us have held prominent GPC roles; we won’t in the future, largely because of the experiences we have had at the hands of some colleagues in those roles.”Last month Dr Bramall-Stainer said a very senior member of the BMA committee had called her a “naughty girl” just before she took to the stage to co-chair a conference last month.The BMA on Wednesday said it would launch an independent investigation.Dr Chaand Nagpaul, BMA chairman, said: “I am appalled to hear of the treatment my colleagues describe and of similarly unacceptable behaviours.”“’I want to say I’m sorry for them, and offer my heartfelt apologies on behalf of the whole association.”Dr Nagpaul, a GP who led the GPC committee until becoming chairman of the BMA, promised to launch an urgent investigation into the allegations.He said: “Abusive behaviour has no place in the BMA and I recognise the courage that it takes to come forward with such allegations and so I thank them for that.“In order to be truly representative we cannot afford to lose valued members as a result of inappropriate behaviour going unchallenged, and ultimately, it will be the profession that loses out if we do.“Let me be clear – sexist, disrespectful, discriminatory and abusive behaviour will not be tolerated in this association and must be stamped out.”On Wednesday he said: “It is essential that we take decisive action to make positive changes. Which is why we are launching an urgent and wholly independent investigation in response to these allegations, and we are reaching out to affected members to invite them to be an integral part of this. We would also ask that any member who feels they have experienced discriminatory or abusive behaviour to contact us”.“It is vital that all members can have confidence that this investigation will be truly independent and that the recommendations will be implemented in a timely manner. We have also offered the members who have raised concerns through the media the opportunity to discuss these concerns with independent support.”“Going forward, we will be reviewing and identifying additional ways in which members can safely and effectively raise concerns. These processes must be there to ensure that members feel supported. For those who fail to meet the high standards set by the BMA, they must be dealt with accordingly. The BMA strives to be a compassionate, respectful and inclusive organisation and if better and more thorough training and education is needed on what is and what is not acceptable behaviour in 2019, that will be provided.“Ultimately what is crucial is that there is learning, and the Association puts in place systems that bring out the best of each member to contribute their strengths in a BMA underpinned with equality and diversity.”Dr Nikita Kanani, NHS England’s medical director of primary care, said: “The behaviours described by some of my colleagues belong firmly in the past. They have no place in our profession, and no place in our leadership, and we will not stand for ‘everyday sexism’.” The British Medical Association (BMA) has launched an investigation after senior female GPs accused colleagues of sexism.Female doctors had accused senior members of the union of sending unsolicited naked pictures and joking about women’s bra sizes, amid a culture of “institutional sexism”.Medics said they were speaking up as part of the #metoo movement, warning that they had suffered harassment, sexism and discriminatory behaviour which must be stamped out.Women on the BMA’s committees said they had been called “naughty girls” and other belittling names, describing incidents in which senior women had been groped and sexually propositioned.In an article for GP online, two female doctors from the BMA’s GP committee said it was time to “open the lid” on an outdated culture which had forced out many women who should have progressed.Dr Zoe Norris and Dr Katie Bramall-Stainer said it was time to call out the “misogynistic behaviour” of those leading the profession, recounting a string of incidents.One woman on the 77-strong GP committee (GPC) was reported to feel unable to attend events away from home without a family member to accompany her, after being propositioned by a male colleague.  Another doctor said a male colleague had sent her a naked photograph of himself, unsolicited.And another overheard two senior committee members attempting to guess the bra size of a female committee member.Dr Norris said: “I have never experienced the level of sexism and discrimination in my entire career that I have in the GPC.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? 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