14 days ago​Ex-Man Utd striker Berbatov: Messi and Ronaldo would struggle in Solskjaer’s team

first_imgAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say ​Ex-Man Utd striker Berbatov: Messi and Ronaldo would struggle in Solskjaer’s teamby Freddie Taylor14 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveFormer Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov has laid into the team, by suggesting that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo would struggle in it.United are enduring a miserable start to the season that sees them only two points above the relegation zone in the league.They face Liverpool at home in their first game after the current international break.Speaking to Betfair about United, Berbatov explained: “The winter transfer window is going to be difficult and on the pitch Manchester United aren’t producing as a team at the moment. “It doesn’t matter how good you are, Messi or Ronaldo could go there and they would have difficulty because the team is not producing.” last_img read more

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Ultimate Frisbee Is In The Dark Ages Of Analytics — And It

Ultimate should be fertile ground for analytics. The mostly amateur sport first blossomed at universities and remains popular with engineers, computer scientists, mathematicians and teachers — curious, creative nerds eager to break down the sport and share what they learn. Its profile is growing, too. This summer, the International Olympic Committee made the sport eligible to be included in a future Summer Olympics.When I attended the under-23 world tournament in England this summer, I saw hundreds of the sport’s future stars coached by some of its brightest minds, but I also saw a sport missing something vital: detailed data.It’s easy to take sports data for granted in an age when cameras track and quantify the movement of players and balls in baseball, basketball, tennis and soccer. The biggest challenges for analysts in those sports is how to wrangle and make sense of all that data and to get fans to look past traditional box-score numbers.But in ultimate, there are hardly any traditional box-score numbers. Other sports have digitized stat-keeping even at the college or high-school level. But for ultimate, even at a relatively organized and well-run event like the under-23 worlds, the sport’s best young players checked opponents’ scores on schedules filled in by hand. Coaches — including my FiveThirtyEight colleague Jody Avirgan, an assistant coach for the U.S. men’s team — carried clipboards to log who played each point, with paper flapping in the wind and ink blurring in the rain. Players got a glimpse of what wealth can bring to a sport every time they walked past one of Watford FC’s brand-new 500,000 pound ($750,000) fields, but rope fences made clear that the Premier League team’s training ground was off-limits — as were stats as advanced and sophisticated as the EPL’s.At best, ultimate box scores — such as those posted on the under-23 worlds website — contain just goals, assists and Ds (discs knocked down or intercepted). “That is Stone Age material to work with,” said Sean Childers, an ultimate player and co-author of a study on ultimate presented last year at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, in an email. “Imagine a baseball or basketball box score from 50 years ago, but worse.”Ultimate coaches dream of stats corresponding to some of their favorites from other sports. Several wished hockey assists — the pass that leads to the pass for the score — were tracked. Bob Krier, head coach of the U.S. men’s under-23 team, wants to see a shooting percentage for the most difficult passes into the end zone. Others want stats on “pulls,” ultimate’s version of kickoffs: Coaches suspect pulls matter a lot in helping a team set up its defense, both for how long they hang in the air and for where they land.A catch-all metric for player value such as wins above replacement would be nice, too. But Martin Aguilera, who coached the U.S. mixed team at the under-23 championships this year, said, “We’re so far away from that.”Many coaches said they look to basketball for stats they want to see for ultimate. On the surface, ultimate has more in common with football (passing toward a score in an end zone), soccer (a field sport with fluid positions and no play clock) and tennis (starting a point on offense is like serving, and scoring on a defensive point is called breaking). But ultimate has similar defensive principles to basketball, with players switching suddenly from offense to defense and both teams resetting after each score.Plus, basketball has lots of cool data. Ultimate nerds speak with envy and awe about SportVU, the system of cameras that ring NBA arenas and produce data about where the players and ball are at every moment of each game. And they cite the shooting charts of FiveThirtyEight’s Kirk Goldsberry as models for charts they’d love to see, ones that would map success rates for players’ shots at the end zone by field position.Other sports are also seeking better data than their traditional, limited box scores provide. In volleyball, “the official stat sheet is basically useless,” said Todd Dagenais, coach of the University of Central Florida women’s team. He’s seeking better stats to help his team but says there’s a dividend for spectators, too: A smarter sport is more fun to watch. “When an offense is run well, fans love that, which causes the defense to have to make more spectacular moves and more spectacular plays, which is also very entertaining,” he said.Ultimate’s stats are stuck in the Stone Age in part because it takes a lot of work to get not a lot of insight. To improve on the kind of time-consuming, manual stat-keeping process that some coaches at the world championships were using, ultimate players developed an app to track players moving around the field. The Ultiapps Stat Tracker can generate heat maps showing the best scoring spots. Childers and a fellow researcher used data from the app to figure out where those spots are and which players were best at getting the disc there. What they found mostly reinforced basic tenets of the sport, like the importance of keeping the disc in the middle of the field. The heat map above, which is from the paper by Childers and Jeremy Weiss, shows a team’s likelihood of scoring from different points on the field. As a team moves closer and closer to the end zone (at the top of the chart), its chances of scoring increase (the higher the number, the better). The large dip in the 40-percent zone — shown as 0.4 — suggests that a team is just as likely to score from about 50 yards outside the end zone (marked as 20 on the heat map) in the middle of the field as they are from 35 but stuck on the sideline.But data collected at one level of the sport with, say, little wind may not translate into a different level in windy conditions. Partly because of limitations like that one, teams mostly have stopped using the app to collect data.“Teams liked our analysis but found collecting and inputting the data was too onerous to justify the time investment,” Childers said.Part of would-be ultimate analysts’ challenge is that top ultimate players don’t play that many meaningful points1Each game of ultimate is played to a certain number of points, and each team must keep the same group of players on the field until the next point is scored. in a season. Players might play during only eight or 10 points of a game because top teams are deep, usually with more than twice the number of players on the sideline as are on the field at any time. And the roster is rarely the same from tournament to tournament.2Even in an age when ESPN is airing ultimate, no one makes a living playing the sport. Top players often skip tournaments because of personal or job conflicts.Even if everyone could agree on which new stats are needed in a sport like ultimate, a tough question remains: Whose job should it be to collect the stats? Tournaments are mostly run by volunteers focused on tasks such as ensuring players find the right field, have enough water and uphold the sport’s unique spirit of the game during play. That leaves coaches to keep any extra stats they’d want for analysis. But they’re also busy doing lots of other things during tournaments. It’s often easier to collect advanced stats during tryouts or practices instead.For the under-23 tournament, U.K. mixed coaches had to choose 26 players from 93 who showed up at trials. They divided them into six groups and filmed them, rating them in 24 categories. None was scores, assists or Ds. The categories were more subtle: essential but hard-to-measure ultimate and interpersonal skills. One, for example, was “nicehead,” which gauged how well someone played with others. “What we didn’t want to do is pick very skilled players who couldn’t interact with other human beings,” coach Megan Hurst said. She and her fellow coach Felix Shardlow entered all the stats into a big spreadsheet and looked for players whose low ratings came in categories they could easily improve, like catching. Aguilera thinks that more ultimate should be filmed and that more film should be watched. He filmed games at the under-23 worlds from atop a ladder he’d bought for 30 pounds ($45) just before the tournament. Many top college basketball players have seen hundreds of games by the time they get to campus. Incoming college ultimate players might have watched fewer than 20 ultimate games, Aguilera said.Absent data, coaches have to rely on scouting to get ahead. Film analysis has become a hallmark of the best college and club programs in the country. And it was on display at the tournament in England, too.Take, for example, the women’s final between the U.S. and Japan. Mike Whitaker, the head coach of the U.S. team who’d been scouting that Canada-Colombia game with his assistants near the start of the tournament, said that Japan used “advanced scouting more than any other team at the worlds.” The Japanese team brought personnel dedicated to the practice, which played a big role in the final’s outcome. He noticed Japan made adjustments to its defense after its group-stage game against the Americans (the U.S. won 17-13) and scouting other U.S. games.Eri Hirai, Japan’s head coach, said the team tracked which players on other tournament teams threw the most long passes and which ones ran the most. Harai said this kind of scouting is standard practice in Japan. “It’s very important because we knew nothing about other teams before the tournament,” she said in an email interview conducted through a translator. By the end of the tournament, the Japanese team knew enough about the Americans to win the final in a big upset, 17-15. It was the only game any U.S. team lost in the tournament. ST ALBANS, England — On a field 20 miles north of London, three people were camped on the edge of a field wearing USA Ultimate hoodies, notebooks open in front of them. They were the coaches of the U.S.’s under-23 women’s team, and they were scouting two of their biggest Ultimate Frisbee rivals, Canada and Colombia, who were about to play in a group-stage match of the 2015 world championships. The coaches barely even had any data on their own team — but there they were, scrounging for some on their future opponents. Read more: A Plea For More Frisbee Data From A U.S. Ultimate Coach Riley Erickson records video of future opponents for the U.S. mixed team. Carl Bialik Head coach Mike Whitaker and assistant coaches Carolyn Matthews and Lauren Boyle of the U.S. women’s team. Carl Bialik read more

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Albert Pujols Mashed His Way To 3000 Hits

One of baseball’s most prestigious groups has a new member: Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols joined the 3,000-hit club Friday with a single in the 5th inning of L.A.’s game against the Seattle Mariners. Pujols was a future Hall of Famer regardless of his club membership, of course, but the achievement helps bring into focus just how incredible a hitter he has been over his nearly two-decade-long career.Including the brand-new entry, 32 batters have broken the 3,000-hit barrier, from Cap Anson in 1897 (maybe?) to Pujols 121 years later. Of those 32, only the scandal-ridden1e.g., Pete Rose and Rafael Palmeiro. aren’t either honored in Cooperstown already or bound for the Hall when eligible. But even among that group of baseball’s best-ever hitters, Pujols stands out. While many members of the 3,000-hit club (such as the recently quasi-retired Ichiro Suzuki) secured their memberships by rapping out single after single, Pujols did it with power and patience. He’s tied with Willie Mays and Alex Rodriguez for the highest isolated slugging percentage (a stat that measures raw power) of any 3,000-hit-club member, and he has the club’s very best career ratio of extra-base hits plus walks to singles:To be sure, others in this club mastered the art of waiting for the right pitch and crushing it. Willie Mays, for example, had almost as many extra-base hits plus walks per single (1.42) as Pujols does (1.45). But it’s still pretty uncommon, and Pujols is perhaps the greatest practitioner of the style among 3,000-hit-club members. It’s hard to get 3,000 hits against major-league pitching at all, much less to do it while also swinging for the fences.Perhaps this partially explains why Pujols hasn’t aged as well as other hitters; heck, one outlet went so far as to call him the worst player in baseball last year. (Oh wait, that was us.) A base-hit maestro like Tony Gwynn or Craig Biggio might naturally fare better as the baseball odometer ticks up. But despite a steep slowdown in production, Pujols still made it into the 3,000-hit club — a milestone other hitters with power and patience never reached (think Barry Bonds, Ken Griffey Jr., Mike Schmidt or even Babe Ruth). It’s a testament to the 21st century’s most fearsome hitter. read more

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Ohio State Cincinnati football connection runs deep

Left: OSU junior defensive lineman Adolphus Washington (92) makes a tackle during a game against Navy on Aug. 30 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. OSU won, 34-17. Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorRight: OSU cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs celebrates during a game against Wisconsin on Nov. 17, 2012 at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis. OSU won, 21-14, in overtime.Credit: Lantern file photoWhile 109 miles of interstate and city streets separate Ohio Stadium from Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium, there are deep ties connecting the programs that play in each arena.From Ohio State coach Urban Meyer to junior defensive lineman Adolphus Washington, there are numerous Buckeye coaches and players who have, or could have, spent time on the Bearcats’ sidelines.After a brief stint in minor league baseball, Meyer played defensive back at Cincinnati before graduating in 1986. OSU cornerbacks coach and special teams coordinator Kerry Coombs was on the Cincinnati staff from 2007-11, tight ends coach Tim Hinton was an assistant with the Bearcats from 2004-09 and Washington — one of four Cincinnati natives on the team — received his first collegiate scholarship offer from the Bearcats as a freshman in high school.Meyer described his ongoing connection to Cincinnati as a “very strong, emotional attachment,” even beyond his own experience at the school.“My sister is associate provost at Cincinnati, my other sister was a homecoming queen there,” he said Monday. “Obviously my dad, my grandfather, just a strong history at UC.”While he played college ball at Nippert Stadium, Meyer never spent time on the sidelines as a coach like Coombs and Hinton.Coombs said the personal and professional connections he and his wife have to Cincinnati led to his turning down offers from other major college football programs before Meyer came calling.“When we had the opportunity to go to Notre Dame, we were staying in Cincinnati,” Coombs said. “Cincinnati is our home.”The Colerain, Ohio, native said he and his wife, Holly, grew up within miles of each other and added the draw of coaching at OSU under Meyer was the only thing that could have torn him away from Cincinnati.“When Urban called, I called my wife and said ‘Hey, I just wanted to let you know I got this phone call today, and kind of before I tell him no I just wanted to let you know that,’” Coombs said. “She said ‘Don’t you tell him no,’ and I said ‘Is that right?’”Coombs said his wife told him “let’s go do this, we can make it work,” with the simple reasoning that Columbus is less than two hours away from their lifelong home in Cincinnati.While his wife made the decision easier, Coombs called the conversation “terrible” that he had with then-Cincinnati coach Butch Jones to tell him he was leaving for OSU. He said conversations with others were just as bad.“It was hard for me to tell anybody,” he said. “I mean, that’s my hometown, and I grew up on the Reds and the Bengals and the Bearcats.”Coombs said growing up with exposure to the Buckeyes made his transition easier, but added that telling the players he recruited to Cincinnati was the hardest part about leaving. He said some of the players he recruited still play for the Bearcats, but one player he tried to get to Cincinnati is set to be on the OSU sidelines when the two teams play on Saturday.Washington said he took an official visit to Cincinnati and had the Bearcats just behind the Buckeyes on his final list.“It actually was my second choice,” he said. “Coach Coombs, when he was there, did a great job of recruiting me, but I just felt like Ohio State was the best place for me.”Like Meyer and others around the OSU program, Washington’s connection to Cincinnati goes beyond recruiting letters and official visits.“I went to basketball games (at Cincinnati), because my granddad worked there for like 35, 40 years,” Washington said. “He was a janitor and he would get tickets and we would go to basketball games there.”Just like Coombs said the draw of coaching under Meyer was a key to his decision to move to OSU, Washington said the chance to play for the two-time national champion was too much to pass up.“Didn’t know a lot about him (Meyer), but I knew he had won two national championships (at Florida),” Washington said. “So I figured I could probably get one under my belt in the four years he was there.”While the draw of potentially winning titles contributed to Washington’s decision to pick OSU, Hinton said he was fortunate to be at Cincinnati — which has yet to win a national championship — for some of the program’s most successful seasons.“It was a phenomenal run, you’ve got an Orange Bowl and Sugar Bowl,” Hinton said of his time with the Bearcats. “And how special was that when you’re a UC guy? It was very, very special.”Whether Washington will win the national championship he hoped for is yet to be seen, but he is set to at least have a shot to win one game against the school he nearly attended on Saturday.Coombs said the matchup will be fun for him, but because of his deep-lying connections with the Bearcats, he said the game will be more difficult than his average Saturday on the sidelines.“Football is always fun, I don’t have any days that aren’t fun,” Coombs said. “But it’s harder, for all those reasons, I think it’s harder.”The Buckeyes and Bearcats are set to kick off at 6 p.m. at Ohio Stadium. read more

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Christian Pulisic named as a replacement for Willian at Chelsea

first_imgChelsea will step up their efforts to sign Christian Pulisic this summer if Willian opts to leave, reports the Evening StandardThe United States international has emerged as an exciting young talent in German football and Borussia Dortmund are now reportedly willing to cash in on the forward, if their asking price of £60m is matched.Jorginho and Rob Green are the only signings that Chelsea have made this summer, but new manager Maurizio Sarri is still planning on making some new additions before the end of the transfer window on August 9.Tammy Abraham, ChelseaChelsea hat-trick hero Tammy Abraham hopes for more Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Tammy Abraham hopes this season will be his big breakthrough at Chelsea after firing his first hat-trick for the club in Saturday’s 5-2 win at Wolves.The former Napoli boss had been planning on a reunion with Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain, but it appears that AC Milan have beaten him to it with reports emerging that they have signed the Argentina international on a season-long loan deal.Despite Barcelona having withdrawn their interest, Willian’s future at Stamford Bridge remains in doubt with Real Madrid now a shock possible destination for the 29-year-old.But Chelsea will not allow the Brazilian to go on the cheap and have set an asking price of £70m, which they intend to use to fund their bid for teenage sensation Pulisic.last_img read more

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POLICE LOG for April 20 Serious Car Crash With Injuries Car vs

first_imgHopkins Street is closed to through traffic due to a serious motor vehicle crash just before the #Billerica Line. Seek alternate routes. #WilmingtonMA pic.twitter.com/D4Gp5PLWrj— Wilmington MA Police (@WilmingtonMAPD) April 20, 2018—(DISCLAIMER: This information is public information.  An arrest does not constitute a conviction.  Any arrested person is innocent until proven guilty.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip?Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedPOLICE LOG for September 5: Train Conductor Helps Locate Missing Puppy; Rented Trucks Not Returned To UHaulIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for July 27: OUI Arrest; Woman Brings Caged Bird To Town BeachIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for July 25: Wilmington Man Arrested For OUI; Men Carrying Sledgehammers Down Street; Turkeys Causing TrafficIn “Police Log” WILMINGTON, MA — Here are highlights from the Wilmington Police Log for Friday, April 20, 2018:A Fitz Terrace caller reported a male party was fishing on private property. Police responded and moved the man along. (8:03am)A vehicle stroke a pole on Grove Avenue. No injuries noted. RMLD notified. (1:45pm)Police was flagged down by passerby complaining there was a dog on town beach. Police advised the dog owner and moved them along. (5:49pm)A walk-in party reported she was the victim of a fraud. (5:52pm)A bad 2-vehicle crash, with injuries and an entrapment, took place between a black 2005 Honda Civic and blue 2008 Toyota Prius at Hopkins Street and Dorchester Street. One driver was unconscious, the other was entrapped. Road was shutdown. A mailbox was damaged due to the accident. A dog, which was in one of the vehicles, was transported to the vet. Tewksbury, Billerica and Burlington Fire Departments also responded and/or provided mutual coverage. Police filed an immediate threat against the operator of the Honda and faxed the paperwork to the RMV.  (6:30pm)—last_img read more

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Texas Company Recalls Nearly 25 Tons Of Smoked Sausage Items

first_img Share tOrange.bizEddy Packing Co., a Texas company, has recalled nearly 25 tons (23 metric tons) of smoked sausage products due to possible plastic contamination.The U.S. Department of Agriculture released a statement Friday saying the recall involves products with packing dates of April 5 and April 6. The products were shipped to food service and retail locations in California, Georgia, Illinois, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.The problem was discovered when Eddy Packing received complaints from a restaurant about white, hard plastic found in some sausage during slicing. No injuries or illnesses have been reported.The recalled products have “EST. 4800” inside the USDA mark. They should be discarded or returned.The recall includes Eddy Fully Cooked Premium Smoked Sausage, Dickey’s Barbeque Pit Original Smoked Fresh Polish Sausage Made With Pork and Beef, Lowe’s Original Recipe Naturally Hardwood Smoked Sausage Made With Pork and Beef, Eddy Smoked Sausage Made With Pork and Beef, Carl’s Pork and Beef Smoked Sausage, Eddy Southern Style Pork and Beef Smoked Sausage and Dickey Cheese/Jalapeno Pork and Beef Sausage Ring.Labels for FSIS Recall last_img read more

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Delhis little Tibet

first_imgMajnu ka Tilla, a popular name among the student populace of Delhi University, has a famous Gurudwara and a Tibetan colony. The colony was allotted in the early 1960s by then Prime minister of India Pt Jawaharlal Nehru in order to give refuge to the Tibetan refugees following the mass exodus in 1959.The Tibetan colony at Majnu ka Tilla has several Tibetan stores and roadside stalls that offer traditional Tibetan clothes, handicrafts, Buddhist artifacts, jewellery, various types of pickles, bamboo shoots, dried Tibetan noodles as well as Tibetan traditional corn flakes, colourful face masks, socks, shoe-soles. Some made-in-China products like sandals, umbrellas and bags are also available here.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The colony is full of restaurants that specialise in Tibetan, Nepali, Korean and Bhutanese cuisines. Besides the mouth smacking Momos, Thukpas, and Shabalays, one thing that draws visitors from all over Delhi, is the non-alcoholic Fruit Beer, which is available in every restaurant in the colony. On Wednesdays none of the restaurants in Majnu ka Tilla provides non vegetarian food. In the year 2004, the colony was renamed after the late freedom fighter Aruna Asaf Ali.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe colony has about 363 permanent registered families in addition to many tenants and outstation students. “The temple we have in the courtyard is not a monastery, so it is only open twice a day during the morning and the evening prayer sessions. Our usual functions and festivals are performed in this courtyard only but sometimes they are also carried out in the school playground,” said an official. On asked about the timing of the lively stores, he added, “The stores here are generally open till 7pm in the evening and some of the restaurants till 10-10:30 at night which adheres to the government rule.” “The place is visited mostly by Delhi University students and foreign tourists for the good reputation of food. There are many good restaurants here that provides tasty Tibetan and Nepali food”, said Gopal Krishnan, a worker at a local Travels and Money Changer store. Since Majnu ka Tilla was gifted to the Tibetans by the Government of India, they are neither allowed to sell the land to Indians nor are Indians allowed to buy property there. The place is exclusively meant for Tibetans who are at a liberty to have Indians rent a store for business.“People mostly buy the Dream-Catcher from our store, amongst all the other artifacts and traditional items. The Dream Catcher is believed to catch the bad dreams and prevent one from having nightmares,” says Tenzin, a worker in one of the artifacts stores.According to an auto-driver, who ferries passengers to and from the Vidhan Nagar metro station to Majnu ka Tilla, the co-ed-school is only for Tibetan children from the colony and has till the 8th standard. Even though Indian children were admitted to the school previously, it had been forbidden for quite some time now.With all the colours and spices sprinkled over to flavour the place, Majnu ka Tilla still has several local residents who find it difficult to communicate with outsiders due to language issues. If only they interacted more with the visiting students and tourists in Hindi and in English they could have learnt the language and also be a tad bit more friendlier.last_img read more

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An orange a day may prevent agerelated vision loss

first_imgIf you want to prevent losing your vision as you age and keep your eyes healthy, eat oranges daily, says a study led by an Indian origin researcher.Macular degeneration is a condition associated with old age that causes vision loss at the centre of the fieldf vision. The results showed that people who ate at least one serving of oranges every day had more than 60 per cent reduced risk of developing late macular degeneration 15 years later.The effect may be due to flavonoids present in oranges that help prevent vision loss. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfFlavonoids are powerful antioxidants found in almost all fruits and vegetables, and they have important anti-inflammatory benefits for the immune system.”Essentially we found that people who eat at least one serve of orange every day have a reduced risk of developing macular degeneration compared with people who never eat oranges,” said lead researcher Bamini Gopinath from the University of Sydney.”Even eating an orange once a week seems to offer significant benefits,” she added. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveFor the study, published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the team interviewed more than 2,000 people aged over 50 and followed them over a period of 15 years.Gopinath explained that previously most of the researches had focused on the effects of common nutrients such as Vitamins C, E and A on the eyes.The team also looked at other flavonoid containing foods like tea, apple, red wine. However they did not find any relation between other sources and protection of eyes against the disease.Age is the strongest known risk factor and the disease is more likely to occur after the age of 50. There is currently no cure for the disease.last_img read more

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