Sullivan leads as fog disrupts play
Britain's doping chief keen to speak to Wenger
Cech has point to prove to Chelsea, says Gary Lim
Cech out to prove Chelsea wrong in making Courtois their No. 1
Arsene Wenger bought only one player in the summer.
It may turn out to be the most inspired signing of his Arsenal managerial career.
When Petr Cech takes to the field against Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium tomorrow, he will be looking to extend his Premiership record of clean sheets to 173, in his 355th Premier League appearance.
Understandably, key personnel at Chelsea had misgivings when Arsenal made their approach for the Czech, who had lost his starting spot to the young, talented Thibaut Courtois.
So synonymous with the Blues was Cech, who spent 11 years there, that adidas mistakenly dropped off his gloves - meant for tomorrow's clash - at Chelsea's training ground instead of Arsenal's.
Former Blues manager Jose Mourinho was adamant not to help Wenger complete his potential title-winning jigsaw, while captain John Terry believed Cech would earn Arsenal "12 to 15 points" a season.
If not for owner Roman Abramovich's magnanimity to a loyal servant, Cech's £10-million ($20.4m) transfer to Arsenal would never have happened.
The Czech Republic international's value to Arsenal isn't confined to his performances between the sticks.
It is now becoming increasingly clear that his worth extends to areas more profound.
For years, Wenger's men lacked the nous of champions, and have also worryingly picked up a reputation for imploding towards the business end of a campaign.
Enter Cech. The 33-year-old goalkeeper brought with him from Chelsea one Champions League and four Premier League winners' medals.
He fills a leadership vacuum left behind by captain Mikel Arteta, who isn't guaranteed a spot in the starting line-up. And he provides the calming influence when tension builds up.
In the short space of just over half a season, Cech has, through his mere presence, fortified the psyche of a self-doubting group, sharpened their instincts and instilled belief.
Wenger said of Cech recently: "He is someone who gives you an aura... a charisma that is always important in big games. You always look around the dressing room before a big game and you think, 'Are we strong enough?'. And these kind of faces help you to believe it."
But Cech also represents more than just a psychological boost.
Arsenal are top of the league. They share with Manchester City the joint-third best defensive record, having let in only 21 goals in 22 games. Cech, who has featured in every league fixture, has a league-high 10 clean sheets with City's Joe Hart.
Cech lends consistency to a position which Arsenal had never adequately filled since German Jens Lehmann left in 2008.
And, as Terry correctly predicted, Cech was always going to be worth plenty of points to any team.
His absence was keenly felt at Stamford Bridge during the three months Belgian Courtois, 23, sat out through injury.
Cech's contributions to the Gunners came through crystal clear in their last game - a goalless draw with Stoke at the Britannia. He pulled off a series of stops, including a superb double-save from Bojan Krkic and Joselu, in a Man-of-the-Match display.
Tomorrow, he comes face-to-face with Courtois, the man who ousted him from Chelsea.
His team go into the game on top of the pile, while his former teammates are battling to avoid the relegation scrap. The irony won't be lost on Chelsea fans.
- Games played: 22
- Goals conceded: 21
- Clean sheets: 10
- Saves: 73
- Games played: 11
- Goals conceded: 16
- Clean sheets: 2
- Saves: 33
Minutes since Arsenal scored against Chelsea in the league. At the Emirates, three of their last four meetings ended goalless. Chelsea won the other game 2-1.
Oezil, Sanchez could return
Wenger: Blues clash a big deal
Brighter future, better S'pore
In response to President Tony Tan Keng Yam's address to Parliament last Friday, three ministries and the Prime Minister's Office yesterday set out their plans for partnership between citizens and the Government to build a better future. LINETTE HENG (email@example.com) looks at the details
MINISTRY OF CULTURE, COMMUNITY AND YOUTH (MCCY)
MCCY will build on the momentum of the SG50 celebrations so that Singapore embarks on the next phase of nation-building with an even stronger sense of national identity and unity, said Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth.
It wants to inspire national pride through heritage, arts and sports to achieve this.
The revamped National Museum and Asian Civilisations Museum, and the new National Gallery Singapore will play a significant role in telling the Singapore story for future generations and in strengthening our national identity through their programmes and outreach initiatives.
The National Youth Sports Institute will be set up to identify and support sporting talent at the Singapore Sports School and mainstream schools.
MCCY also wants to inspire volunteerism and philanthropy at every life stage.
For instance, the National Youth Council will reach out to the youth through Youth Corps Singapore.
To encourage more working adults to volunteer, employers and corporate partners will be engaged.
And there will be increased support and recognition for senior volunteers through the Silver Volunteer Fund and President's Volunteerism and Philanthropy Award.
MINISTRY OF FINANCE (MOF)
Singapore must continue to spend within our means as expenditures on transport infrastructure, healthcare and housing increase.
There must be an emphasis on value-for-money in every programme and subsidies should be targeted at those most in need, said Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat.
To transform Singapore from a value-adding to a value-creating economy, MOF will support the development of a conducive environment for businesses to restructure, innovate and internationalise.
It will develop a high performance government by increasing online and mobile services.
For Singaporeans who may be less familiar with technology, it will continue to provide digital assistance and access so that every Singaporean can benefit.
It will introduce flexibility in the way the public sector procures goods and services by supporting and encouraging vendors to adopt more productive and innovative solutions.
MINISTRY OF LAW (MINLAW)
Minlaw has worked to ensure Singapore's laws and legal framework are progressive and practical.
An example is the Community Disputes Resolution Act, which came into force last October, providing a new cause of action and tribunals for neighbours locked in intractable disputes.
In family law, it is working on reforms to the Guardianship of Infants Act, the Intestate Succession Act and the Inheritance (Family Provision) Act.
Minlaw will also develop Singapore into a hub for international legal services and dispute resolution.
Maxwell Chambers - Singapore's flagship dispute resolution facility - will be expanded.
To ensure quality and sufficient legal sector manpower, especially lawyers who will serve the needs of the community in the areas of criminal and family law, Minlaw will work with the Ministry of Education and UniSIM to build up UniSIM Law School
It will introduce a new pathway for mid-career individuals to join the legal profession.
In the area of community legal services, it will be implementing a series of measures to strengthen the moneylending regime, including the setting up of a centralised credit bureau for moneylenders and the introduction of an aggregate unsecured borrowing cap.
PUBLIC SERVICE DIVISION (PSD), PRIME MINISTER'S OFFICE
The PSD aims to strengthen partnerships between citizens and the Public Service to innovate and deliver better solutions.
It will leverage on technology for better service delivery.
For instance, it will use data analytics and automated systems to better understand citizens' needs, improve public services and raise productivity and efficiency.
It will also draw from more diverse groups of individuals to serve on its boards, councils and advisory panels so that Singaporeans can offer their views and ideas to help the Public Service in developing, reviewing and implementing policies.
Through SkillsFuture, it will help its officers deepen their skills as they progress through their careers.
20th dead cat found in Yishun
A dead cat was found on a walkway next to a petrol kiosk near Block 732, Yishun Avenue 5 on Thursday night.
Cat interest group "Yishun 326 Tabby cat" posted photos of the cat on Facebook, appealing for witnesses and information.
It is the 20th cat death reported in the estate since September last year. Another two cats were seriously injured.
The last death was reported on Tuesday, when the body of a bloodied cat was found in a drain at Block 361, Yishun Ring Road.
Nee Soon GRC MP Louis Ng announced on Dec 15 last year that a new grassroots fast response team had been set up to patrol parts of the estate and gather evidence.
Additional high-resolution cameras were also installed around the neighbourhood, Mr Ng added.
On Dec 29 last year, 40-year-old Lee Wai Leong was charged with throwing an adult male Mackerel Tabby domestic shorthair cat over the parapet of the 13th floor of Block 115B, Yishun Ring Road.
He was remanded at the Institute of Mental Health for psychiatric assessment.
Lee, who faces a single count of animal cruelty, was granted bail of $10,000 on Tuesday.
Lee is the first person to be hauled to court under the new Animals and Birds Act, which was amended in 2014 to toughen the penalties for animal cruelty. His case is due to be mentioned in court on Feb 15.
If convicted, he can be jailed for up to 18 months, fined up to $15,000 or both.
For second and subsequent offences, the maximum penalty is $30,000 or jail of up to three years or both.
Members of the public with any information about the cat abuse cases may call the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore at 1800-476-1600 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
You may also call the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' 24-hour hotline at 6287-5355, ext 9.
- The Straits Times.
He's alive thanks to Turf Club officers' quick action
Security officers help save man's life after he suffers cardiac arrest at S'pore Turf Club
The last thing Mr Khoo Teng Guang remembered was looking out at the tracks of the Singapore Turf Club (STC), waiting for a race to start.
He woke up days later in hospital, where he found out that his heart had stopped at the STC.
He had survived thanks to members of the STC staff, who used a mobile automated external defibrillator (AED) and performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to save him.
"The doctor told my wife to be prepared because I might not make it through the night.
"Thankfully, I woke up on the fourth day of my admission, but without any memory of the incident," said Mr Khoo, 49, who is self-employed.
"I was very lucky that the officers were there to help me."
On Thursday, he got to meet the men who saved his life at a press conference, where he also presented an AED to the Riding for the Disabled Association of Singapore as part of an initiative by AED-maker HeartSine. (See report, right.)
Mr Khoo said he was at the North Grandstand of Singapore Turf Club on Dec 13 when he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest - a life-threatening condition in which the heart abruptly stops beating - at about 5.10pm.
"Before I collapsed, I didn't feel any pain at all," said the father of one.
A passer-by who saw the incident quickly alerted STC's security command centre and senior security officers Hasan Ahmad, 45, and Javerson Chok, 30, were deployed to the scene.
Mr Hasan, who has been working at STC for the past eight years, retrieved the nearest mobile AED, which about 1m away from where he was.
"It was the first time someone had a sudden cardiac arrest in the Turf Club. I had to calm myself down and move as quickly as I could," he said.
Meanwhile, Mr Chok, who was already at the North Grandstand, ran to where Mr Khoo was lying down and started performing CPR.
"There wasn't any heartbeat or pulse on him.
"So I immediately started doing chest compressions while Hasan hooked him up to the AED," added Mr Chok.
The AED detected no pulse from Mr Khoo.
The machine then instructed the pair to keep their distance from the man's body and gave Mr Khoo an electric shock to restart his heart.
Mr Chok said: "Even after the shock, he had no pulse. So I had to carry on with the CPR.
"By then, the on-site doctor had arrived and took over. After a few seconds, he told us that Mr Khoo's heart started beating."
Mr Khoo was taken by the Singapore Civil Defence Force to Khoo Teck Puat hospital, where he was admitted for five days.
Mr Simon Leong, vice-president of corporate services at the STC, told The New Paper: "On live race days, we always have an on-site doctor at our race course to attend to any emergencies.
"On top of that, and having our security officers trained in CPR and first aid, we also make sure the AEDs are readily accessible in public spaces."
Mr Hasan said having AEDs readily accessible matters in life-or-death situations.
"It was just my luck that the AED was right beside me so I just took it and ran as fast as I could," he said.
"I am very proud that we both managed to save someone's life."