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‘How dare you boo her’: UFC Florida crowd slammed for jeering Chinese ex-champ Zhang Weili

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

Zhang Weili, who lost her UFC strawweight championship to Rose Namajunas at Saturday’s UFC 261, was targeted with a chorus of boos from the Florida crowd, apparently for no other reason than she hails from China.

The UFC’s first fight card to take place in front of a capacity crowd in more than a year was worth the wait. From title changes, to upsets, to stunning one-shot knockouts… and, well, whatever it was that happened to Chris Weidman’s leg, but one element from the evening which may have left a bad taste in some fight fans’ mouths was the not-so-warm welcome afforded to Zhang. 

Winner of 21 straight fights, Zhang was about as dominant a champion on the UFC roster before she walked into a high kick from Namajunas which ended her night – and her title reign – a little over a minute into the first round.

The lead-in to the fight had been notable for Namajunas’ comments in which she said “better dead than red” when describing her Chinese opponent, with the Lithuanian-American fighter highlighting that Zhang hails from a country under Communist rule – which might partly explain the reaction aimed at her by the capacity crowd.

Seriously. How much of a dumb f*ck do you have to be to boo Zhang because she is Chinese?” asked one fan online, with several other reactions in a similar suit.

Who dare boo Zhang Weili?” added another, before adding: “I boo you Florida, America sucks.”

Some alleged that the motivation behind the boos was nothing but “racist” – although there is always the explanation that as an American on home soil, Namajunas was always likely to get more crowd backing. 

For her part, Namajunas was keen to walk back her controversial Communist comments in her post-fight interview, telling the media that she has no personal quarrel with Zhang.

All that stuff that was the in the media, that was not my intent to ever personally attack her as a person,” Namajunas said. “It’s just my history and my past and that’s it.

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Zhang’s prior dominance in the women’s 115-pound fold will likely earn her an immediate rematch with Namajunas amid their developing rivalry.

I feel I can come back real quick,” Zhang said afterwards. “I was still conscious, the referee stopped it a little bit early.”

She, and most of the audience watching at home, will likely hope that any rematch doesn’t take place in Florida, though.

Also on rt.com Dazed Zhang DEMANDS TO FIGHT ON despite being felled with brutal head-kick KO in title defeat to Namajunas at UFC 261 (VIDEO)

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Holidays: Grant Shapps slammed for 'expensive' travel tests as Brits priced out of breaks

Holidays are set to return in a matter of weeks but anyone going abroad still has a number of hoops to jump through. The Government continues to put great emphasis on testing as the UK battles to keep out Covid variants. “The risks posed by these variants remain significant, and restrictions for inbound passengers, such as 10-day managed quarantine, home quarantine, and stringent testing will remain in place – but will apply to people differently depending on whether the destination visited is categorised as ‘green’, ‘amber’ or ‘red’,” explained the ‘framework’ from the Department of Transport this morning.
Testing rules are as follows:

Green: arrivals will need to take a pre-departure test as well as a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test on or before day two of their arrival back into the UK – but will not need to quarantine on return (unless they receive a positive result) or take any additional tests, halving the cost of tests on their return from holiday.

Amber: arrivals will need to quarantine for a period of 10 days and take a pre-departure test, and a PCR test on day two and day eight with the option for Test to Release on day five to end self-isolation early.

Red: arrivals will be subject to restrictions currently in place for ‘red list’ countries which include a 10-day stay in a managed quarantine hotel, pre-departure testing and PCR testing on day two and eight.

However, many are concerned about how expensive these tests will be, with costs often around £150.

READ MORE: British Airways holidays: Latest cancellation & sale deals[1]

Twitter users slammed the Transport Secretary after he appeared on BBC this morning.

“Of course the cost for PCR tests can be driven down @grantshapps …. other countries charge as little as £20-£30 ….. why is this not possible in the UK!” one wrote.

“Beggars belief, £37bn for t&t & were still buying expensive outsourced tests from private companies,” another tweeted.

A third posted: “Despite being pushed by @TVNaga01, @grantshapps wouldn’t be drawn on what is an acceptable price for PCR test on arrival. The answer is surely, cheap Lateral Flow Test and, if found positive, then a full PCR. This will pick up variants of concern and be manageable for providers.”

Some revealed the high costs of the tests meant they would no longer be able to go on holiday.

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One Twitter used commented: “It’s so very disappointing to hear. We were due to see friends in Crete 8 June but all the additional costs is going to make it too expensive for us in our 70s! Really wanting a break after 12 months of restrictions, this is mentally disastrous!!!”

Shapps defended the measures during his TV appearances this morning, explaining that lateral flow tests were not rigorous enough to rely upon.

“The PCR test is often called the gold standard test – it’s the one which will be able to be processed further to look at things like variants of concern. And so it’s important that we proceed with the utmost caution, which is why we’ve got testing at all,” he told BBC Breakfast.

However, he acknowledged that steps needed to be taken to make the tests for travel cheaper.

“I am concerned about the cost of these [tests], they’re provided by private providers, and we’d like to see that cost driven down, and I’m actually going to work between now and the 17th of May, which is the earliest possible date for international travel to resume, with the private sector, with providers to see whether this can’t be driven down quite a lot further,” Shapps explained.

“I think they are too expensive, and it may be that there need to be more entrants in the market. And we’ll be taking a very close look at that.”

The minister shared that one option could be taking a pre-departure lateral flow test.

“We’re actually going to look at the sort of bring-your-own one, so you could take a lateral flow test that everybody is now entitled to… that’s another chunk of the costs,” he said.

“So, in terms of reducing costs that could potentially even remove the costs from the pre-departure test, and then when people come home we will be driving down the cost to get to cheaper testing and indeed looking at the type of test that people need to get.”

However, some experts have warned against relying on lateral flow tests which can show false positives. British healthcare company Salutaris People, which provides private COVID-19 testing, cautioned such a move could trigger a third wave of infections.

Ben Paglia, MD of Akea Life, the clinical testing partners to Salutaris People, said: “The idea of using a lateral flow test as a ‘cheaper’ alternative to PCR testing and to make this more affordable to airline passengers is frankly astonishing.

“After we have made such incredible progress with the vaccination programme rollout – and the incredible hardships and sacrifices many people have had to make in lockdown – why would the Government drop its guard now and risk a potential third outbreak and a rise in infections?

“All it takes is for one person to have a false test result using a lateral flow kit and an entire plane of several hundred people could be at risk.

“The Government’s suggestion to allow airline passengers to also potentially administer their own lateral flow tests would also set a very dangerous precedent and hinder the accuracy of results. The number of false negatives can increase significantly simply due to the lack of understanding people will have in testing themselves.

“This in itself can also lead to the ‘false reassurance’ that a person is ‘negative’ when in fact they may be positive or asymptomatic but carrying the virus. We know that when the tests are administered by trained healthcare professionals, the results accuracy will increase significantly. This is why the tests are indicated for healthcare professional use only.”

‘You’re embarrassing’: US TV personality slammed after urging boycott of Masters golf, linking it to slavery in voting row (VIDEO)

Democrat-loving Keith Olbermann, who has more than a million Twitter followers, has divided viewers by linking the Masters golf to slavery and urging sporting events and TV networks to follow baseball’s lead by shunning Georgia.

Over the course of the weekend, Olbermann, who left ESPN late last year, has posted one particular video several times.

It came as a response to baseball officials choosing to move their All-Star Game from Georgia following the passing of voting legislation that increases ID requirements for absentee voters and prohibits poll staff from offering food or beverages to those waiting in line to cast their ballots.

Costing the region over $ 100 million in lost revenue, the decision has been lamented by both the state’s governor, who has vowed to fight it, and the mayor of Georgia’s biggest city, Atlanta.

“Great. Now boycott the Masters,” Olbermann wrote on Twitter.

“Yesterday, the MLB pulled the All-Star Game out of Atlanta to protest Georgia’s new racist voting laws. An outstanding first reply to the war the racists declared on America. Next? A golf tournament starts in Georgia on Thursday.

“You think the term ‘The Masters’ was applied to a golf tournament in the former slave state of Georgia by…coincidence?” he asked later.

“After baseball moved its All-Star Game out of Atlanta, The Masters, its sponsors, and its tv networks are next.”

Olbermann has received some support for the video, although he has copped criticism from some quarters.

“Shut. Up.” he was told by former ESPN colleague Matt Barrie, who also pointed attention to the ‘Central Park Penthouse’ that he claimed the screen veteran was posting his rant from.

“Took me two seconds to find this on google you gurgling fool,” wrote a radio host, with a link to a Sports Illustrated piece on the real origins of the tournament’s name. 

Even those usually on Olbermann’s side of the fence had to point out his error.

“Keith, as a fellow Dem, I’ve gotta check you on this one. You’re embarrassing yourself and all of us. Knock it off.” demanded one follower.

Republican Kambree Kawahine Koa joked: “My friend’s last name is Masters. Do I boycott, cancel or try to ruin their lives too, like a woke liberal?”

Former professional golfer Kyle Thompson called Olbermann a “complete moron”, but others were fully supportive of his outspoken views.

“A boycott is not enough,” said one. “All companies who advertise must be boycotted.

“It’s too late this year, but [there should be] pressure on [broadcaster] CBS to break the TV contract in 2022. And if the tournament is played, the ‘limited number of patrons’ who choose to use their tickets should be exposed.”
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UFC star Adesanya slammed as New Zealand Deputy PM at sexual assault comment

UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya has landed in hot water in New Zealand, where the country’s Deputy Prime Minister has hit out at the mixed martial artist for directing a “rape” comment at rival fighter Kevin Holland.

Adesanya stunned fans when he announced in an Instagram Live video that he would “rape” Holland if they ever fought in the cage – a retaliation to a barrage of insults slung towards ‘The Last Stylebender’.

Bro, I will f***ing rape you,” Adesanya said in the video which was released to his 4.6 million followers on the platform before subsequently beingdeleted.

Such is Adesanya’s profile in his adopted home country, though, that his crude statement soon found its way into the top office in the country, with Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson – who is also the Minister for Sport – issuing a harsh rebuke of the 20-1 fighter.

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We have to take rape seriously,” said Robertson. “It’s not an issue that anyone should be making jokes or flippant comments about at all.

“I’m sure Israel understands that, I believe he has deleted the tweet [sic] in question. It will be up to the UFC as to what they do.”

Since debuting in the UFC just over three years ago, Adesanya has risen to become one of New Zealand’s highest profile sportsmen, as well as one of the most famous MMA fighters in the world.

He is considered to be among the foremost MMA strikers in the sport and is currently ranked fifth in the UFC’s pound-for-pound ledger.

Adesanya also attracted criticism last year when he predicted that opponent Yoel Romero would “crumble like the Twin Towers” – comments for which he soon apologized.

You speak on the mic enough times and you’re bound to miss the mark with some bars,” he said at the time. I did on this one and for that I’m sorry. I’ll be more careful in future with my words.

The fighter has not yet commented on Robertson’s criticism of him but did issue a tweet which suggested that the media storm surrounding his “rape” comment was a plot by New Zealand-based ‘clickbait’ media.

Adesanya was last seen in the cage earlier this month at UFC 259 in Las Vegas, where he came up short in his bid to add a second world title to his collection, losing via unanimous decision to light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz in what was the first defeat of his MMA career.

Also on rt.com ‘You’ll be OBSESSED with me forever’: UFC champ Adesanya MOCKS bitter rival as Costa threatens to KILL him over messages (VIDEO)

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Debbie McGee slammed by Paul Daniels' son amid 'reconciliation' 'First I've heard of it'

Debbie McGee, 62, has been accused of conjuring up a reconciliation with estranged stepson Paul Daniels Jnr, after the latter said the Strictly Come Dancing star “does not” have a way of contacting him for such an event to occur. The wife of the late famed magician Paul Daniels has been blasted by his son for claiming they have healed their inheritance feud.
Paul Daniels Jr made the claim just days before the fifth anniversary of his father’s death.

Debbie had recently said “everything is fine” between the pair now, as she had planned to invite him to scatter the ashes of the TV magician near her Berkshire estate.

Paul raged: “First I’ve heard of it. She doesn’t have my phone number, email or address so how is she going to invite me?

“It’s just more of, ‘Look how nice I am’, “ he added to The Mirror.

READ MORE:AJ Pritchard’s girlfriend badly injured after fire at home

Paul Jnr has claimed the former ballerina and Strictly Come Dancing star did not give him a penny of his dad’s £1.5million estate.

In the past, he has called her a number of unsavoury names in a tell-all interview with The Sun.

However, Debbie said that the pair had since made up and planned to meet up soon in tribute to her late husband.

The Strictly Come Dancing star shared: “I’m planning to scatter some of Paul’s ashes near here because he loved the water and I would like to get a plot in the local church.

Debbie continued: “Of course what he said was hurtful so soon after his dad died, but I don’t hold grudges.

“He was obviously in extreme grief as well and took it out on me, but everything is good now.”

Paul Jnr first hit out at Debbie in October 2016, seven months after his dad, 77, died of a brain tumour.

At the time he accused his stepmother of leaving him jobless after she shut down The Paul Daniels Magic Party Shop in Wigan which he operated after it was left to him in Paul’s will.

Kings Temptation: Cheltenham Festival slammed as horse dies – 'Simply unacceptable'

The Cheltenham Festival has been hit with heavy criticism after Kings Temptation became the first horse to die at the 2021 event on Wednesday.
The nine-year-old, ridden by Bryan Carver, fell before the 27th fence in the three-mile, six-furlong cross country Glenfarclas Chase on day two of the Festival, which is being held behind closed doors for the first time ever due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Trainer Ben Case confirmed on Twitter on Wednesday night: “Very sadly we lost Kings Temptation at Cheltenham races today in the cross country race when suffered an injury on the flat.

“He had been a fantastic horse for us winning six times and will be greatly missed by all the team at home thoughts are with all connections RIP KT.”

The death of Kings Temptation means that a horse has died at the Festival every single year it has been held since 2000. It was not held in 2001 due to an outbreak of foot and mouth disease in Britain.

And Chris Luffingham, the campaigns director at the animal charity League Against Cruel Sports, declared it “simply unacceptable” that so many horses have lost their lives while taking part at Cheltenham over the past 21 years.

He said: “The League is distressed to learn that King’s Temptation has died after suffering an injury during the Cross Country race on day two of the Cheltenham Festival.

“Around 200 horses are fatally injured on British race tracks every year and historically Cheltenham, along with Aintree, are two of the worst offenders.

“A total of 69 horses have now lost their lives at the Cheltenham Festival since 2000, which is simply unacceptable.

“The League is calling for tighter safety measures, the formation of an independent regulatory body with horse welfare at its heart, and a ban on the whipping of horses.”

Animal Aid’s horse racing consultant Dene Stansall said: “The Cheltenham Festival continues its reputation as a lethal and warped spectacle where horses’ lives come a poor second to money making and gambling.

“For all the hype about race horse welfare, we see these poor horses being made to compete in this atrociously gruelling race over a long distance with too many obstacles.

“The sight of poor Kings Temptation falling to the ground will sicken viewers. Every year horses are killed at this so-called Festival.

“But it continues because making money is clearly more important than the lives of individual animals.”

Clerk of the course Simon Claisse explained: “Sadly the Ben Case-trained Kings Temptation suffered a forelimb fracture in the cross-country race and had to be euthanised.”

Tiger Roll won the race to claim a third Glenfarclas Chase crown with the 11-year-old victorious in his fifth Cheltenham Festival event.

The racing manager for Tiger Roll’s owners Gigginstown House Stud, Eddie O’Leary, said: “That was unbelievable – what a fantastic horse, we’re over the moon here. He’s a legend of a horse.

“There was a rush to retire this horse earlier in the season, but he’s a cross-country horse, that’s what he is, and we always said we’ll wait to see how he gets on over the cross-country fences once more. To win at five Festivals is amazing, what a horse.

“Aintree is off the agenda and we’ve no regrets about that. Both him and Easysland are rated too high. He is rated the equal of our Gold Cup horse, Delta Work, and we know he’s not as good.

“It’s going to be hard to retire him after that, now, and he loves racing in any case.

“He’ll probably have to run at Punchestown in the Grade One, where he will probably prove he is nowhere near a 166-rated horse, and it is a pity we have to do that.

“Cross-country racing got this horse back after he had completely lost his way, but we’ll have to go in a Grade One just to prove he has the wrong rating. He’s a cross-country horse, that’s what he is.

“Whatever we decide to do, and if he never wins another race, we will enjoy today.”

NBA giant Shaquille O’Neal ends up in ambulance after bare knuckle fan is slammed backwards over table on wrestling return (VIDEO)

Shaquille O’Neal was stretched out into an ambulance after being sent flying out of the ring in an explosive first wrestling match with AEW Dynamite, culminating in the former NBA star being slammed violently through a table.

The basketball Hall of Famer from his time with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat teamed up with Jade Cargill to fight Cody Rhodes and Red Velvet at Daily’s Place in Jacksonville, Florida.

I’m not a professional wrestler but I’ve been in a match before,” Shaq said before the match. “I’ve got a lot of moves in my arsenal. When you step inside somebody’s world, you have to stick to what you’re masterful at.

I’m not acrobatic. I’m not going to be jumping off the ropes. I’m coming with the power game. When I get hands on him, I’m going to display this power.”

Shaq’s team earned a well-deserved win but their performance will be more remembered for the episode which took place at the end of the match.

The 48-year-old, who has been widely reported to be investing in the Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship that he describes as “the future of fighting”, was standing next to the ring apron when Rhodes vaulted over the ropes to deliver a decisive strike.

That sent the towering basketball icon flying and both athletes crashing over two tables, leaving 7ft1in O’Neal prone on his back on the floor.

Following the crash, O’Neal was seen stretched out in an ambulance. He was forced to bend his knees to fit into the car.

When wrestling commentator Tony Schiavone came to check on him later, Shaq was said to have mysteriously gone missing from the vehicle.
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