Bottas has the gravitas

SOMETHING'S BREWING: Williams' Valtteri Bottas mixing up a raspberry Martini spritzer at Zouk last night.

When the Williams Formula 1 quartet were introduced on stage at Zouk last night, Valtteri Bottas stepped up third - behind racing teammate Felipe Massa.

If anyone chose to read into that, it would have meant that the 25-year-old Finn was the British racing team's "second" driver, after the veteran Brazilian Massa.

With six races left on the calendar, including this weekend's Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix, it is clear to most who Williams' star is.

Bottas, along with Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo, has been the outstanding young driver of the season.

And he is expected to be the next driver to win a first grand prix after four podium finishes so far this year - compared to Massa's one.

Read the full report in our print edition on Sept 18.

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'War' on match-fixing works

English FA believes it has a robust system in place to combat the scourge

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'Huge possiblity' Chelsea will be in Singapore next year

"In 2013, we played in Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta. The stadium here wasn’t ready. We don’t really want to go back to the same three cities again. Our biggest fanbase is in Southeast Asia, so yeah, if we play in Singapore, I’m sure a lot of our fans from Bangkok, KL and Jakarta will come over, just like how our supporters from Singapore went to KL last year." - Adrian New.

Football fans here could well be singing the Blues, as there is a “huge possibility” that four-time English champions Chelsea will visit Singapore for the first time next year.

Speaking to The New Paper on the sidelines of the Sports Matters conference at Marina Bay Sands yesterday, Chelsea Football Club’s Asia Pacific managing director Adrian New said: “It’s a huge possibility. We already had some initial conversations. 

“We’ve never been to Singapore because there’s never been a stadium that was suitable for us to play in. The old National Stadium could have been, but it wasn’t the greatest. But now, yeah, the new stadium, once the grass grows, it’ll be fantastic.”

Read the full report in our print edition on Sept 18. 

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From music to hockey

Arfynna works hard for place in Crescent Girls' history

TOUGH REGIMEN: Arfynna trains and plays hockey six days a week. 

She was making music with the French horn at the age of nine.

Four years later, Arfynna Shakira Sariman started making music with the hockey stick, dribbling free of opponents and striking the ball past goalkeepers for Crescent Girls' School.

Arfynna is now 16, and this season, she led her school to their first win at the Nationals in 14 years when Crescent lifted the 'B' Division title.

"We were considered the weakest batch in Crescent hockey history and to make it all the way to the final and lift the title brings an overwhelming sense of achievement."

Arfynna was part of a band at Raffles Girls' Primary School but chose hockey, instead, in Secondary One.

As it turns out, her senior mates and coaches were the ones who wanted her to be in the hockey team after watching her at the CCA (Co-Curricular Activities) tryouts.

"Everyone was raving about the potential in her, and I was truly convinced after watching her play," said teacher-in-charge Rilaini Sapari.

Added her coach Nordin Manaff: "She is pretty soft spoken in school, but Arfynna really opens up and dictates the play when she is on the pitch.

"She's just a special player. The way she holds the stick, her speed and all-rounded hockey sense make her a player of true calibre."


The 1.55m-tall forward admitted that she struggled with the intensity of the game initially and thanked Nordin for pushing her hard with fitness exercises.

"I had to run around the pitch for 10 rounds before sprinting across it for several sets," said Arfynna. "I ran in the morning with my team before school starts and I did additional runs on my own."

With six days of training or matches in a week, one wonders where she finds time for studies.

"My teammates and I will usually catch up on our studies before training starts. We would really encourage and help one another with the lessons that we have missed out on."

She was also grateful to her parents, especially her mother who would pick her up after training.

"I'm already a secondary school student but my mother understands how tired I am after training. She will send me home even though she is teaching in another school," said Arfynna.

Having a mother as a teacher has helped Arfynna mix studies with sport.

And to future athletes who intend to pick up a sport for the first time, Arfynna has this advice.

"Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try. And time will tell where your efforts will lead you."

Neymar in Brazil team for S'pore

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DPMM implode

S.League title in Warriors' own hands after Brunei outfit fall at home

STUNNER: Qiu Li (far left) and his Home United teammates dealt a blow to DPMM's title hopes with last night's win.
Warriors coach Alex Weaver.
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Rodgers heartened 
by Pool resilience

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Liverpool lucky to win

UNDER PRESSURE: Liverpool's Raheem Sterling (in red) being challenged by Ludogorets' Cosmin Moti.

Liverpool's lucky win on their Champions League return invites lazy cliches.

They played poorly and prevailed. Better teams than the Reds will struggle against Ludogorets. Three points are the primary concern.

Simple cliches can be a warm security blanket, but cliches can't save Brendan Rodgers on this one. He dipped his first toe in European waters and almost had it ripped off by toothless minnows.

That he emerged from his Champions League debut with his dignity intact - owed more to a catastrophic error from Ludogorets goalkeeper Milan Borjan in stoppage time that it did to anyone in a Liverpool jersey.

Read the full report in our print edition on Sept 18.

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Tags: liverpool, cliches and win

Boos for Iker expose Real cracks

TOUGH GUY: Iker Casillas (above) has the personality to turn the whistles into applause, says former teammate Christian Panucci. 

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Ramifications shows up in smart trial

LAST-START WINNER: Apprentice WT Chung celebrating atop Ramifications in Ipoh on Sept 7.
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