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NFL Week 15: Cardinals grind out win over Chiefs

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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NFL Week 15: Cardinals grind out win over Chiefs | The Thaiger

PHUKET: The Arizona Cardinals won their second straight game on Thursday night football by grinding out a 12-7 home win over a lackluster Kansas City Chiefs (7-6), but the win saw their quarterback Drew Stanton leave the game with a worrisome right knee injury.

The injury came as a big setback for the Cardinals, now 11-3, who had the best record in football until their starting quarterback Carson Palmer went down with a knee injury against the St Louis Rams (6-8) earlier this month.

In Thursday’s game, all the offense the redbirds needed came off the foot of placekicker Chandler Catanzaro, who split the uprights four times.

The anemic Rams’ offence was held to two short field goals and had five three-and-out series in the third quarter.

The strength of the Rams all year has been their defense. In fact, Catanzaro’s 23-yard field goal in the second quarter ended nine quarters of shutout defense by St Louis, which racked up huge wins against the Washington Redskins (3-10) and Oakland Raiders (2-11) by a combined 76-0 the previous two weeks.

In relief of Stanton, third string QB Ryan Lindley was very ineffective, but it didn’t matter in the end. The Cards will have to decide whether to start him again or hand the game ball to completely untested rookie QB Logan Thomas until Stanton’s return.

NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Friday evening that Stanton’s injure was a “Grade 2” MCL sprain and is expected back for the playoffs, per two sources.

THIS WEEKEND’S BIG GAMES

Breakfast bowl: One of the biggest games of Week 15 will start at 8:30am local time on Monday, when the Dallas Cowboys travel to the Philadelphia Eagles in a key NFC East matchup (screened on NBC).

Both teams are tied at the top of the division with 9-4 records, but the Eagles won the previous contest on Thanksgiving Day in Arlington. It could be a “loser go home” match due to the Wild Card situation in the NFC and ever-improving play by Superbowl champs the Seattle Seahawks, now 9-4 and on a three-game win streak.

I don’t know why, but something tells me Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo is going to have a big game and lead Dallas to a win in this one.

Chargers vs Broncos (4:05am Monday, CBS): The Denver Broncos (10-3) will head west for an AFC West showdown with the San Diego Chargers (8-3). The Broncos will want to win in order to stay in contention for the number one seed in the AFC, meaning they would not have to travel to Foxborough, Massachusetts, to take on the New England Patriots (10-3), who beat them there solidly a few weeks ago and thus hole the number one seed.

The question for the Chargers, who lost to the Pats’ solid defense at home last week, will be whether they can generate a ground game. They need a win to stay in the hunt for a Wild Card spot.

Bills vs Packers (1am Monday, Fox): The Buffalo Bills (7-6) are one of the most surprising teams in the league this year based on having one of the best pass rushes in the league. Playing for their playoff lives at home against the Green Bay Packers (10-3), it will be interesting to see if their pass rush can get to future Hall of Fame quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who has been playing at a super high level for weeks.

Patriots vs Dolphins (1am Monday, CBS): Both the Miami Dolphins (7-6) and the New England Patriots (10-3) will be playing full-tilt in this one; the Pats to retain hold of the number one playoff seed in the AFC, and the Dolphins to remain in contention for a wild card spot.

The Dolphins beat the Pats in the home opener by getting to QB Tom Brady, but now the Pats have a much improved defensive line and will be playing in freezing Foxborough with revenge on their minds. It is worth considering that New England quarterback Tom Brady is 25-2 in December home games.

— Somchai Huasaikul

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Crime

Phuket police arrest meth dealer, discover drugs valued at 15 million baht

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Phuket police arrest meth dealer, discover drugs valued at 15 million baht | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Newshawk Phuket

Drugs valued at 15 million baht have been seized in a drug crackdown in Phuket. On October 22, Phuket police, along with Phuket Governor Pakkapong Tawipat, reported to the media about a drug crackdown that ended up with a total seizure valued around 15 million baht.

Earlier, the police received a report from an undercover agent that a woman named ‘Ying’ or ‘Suthicha Thirawut’ was a local drug dealer trading drugs in Phuket area, so police planned to purchase drugs from the woman. They contacted Ying through another woman named ‘Noina’, Ying’s close friend. Around 10pm on October 20, police bought 1 gram of crystal methamphetamine from Noina before arresting Ying and another man, Thanet Thongtan, at the Naka Condominium.

The two confessed that they receive the drug from a man who they weren’t able to name, in order to sell in Phuket. They were paid 40,000 – 50,000 baht per time and admitted to police that they have done this for the man three times already. This time, the drugs hadn’t been sold to customers as they were arrested before being able to make a sale.

Apart from 2.4 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine, valued around 4.8 million baht, the police also discovered 76,800 methamphetamine pills, worth around 11 million baht.

The three are now assisting Phuket police with their enquires related to the case.

SOURCE: Newshawk Phuket

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News

30 dolphins greet visitors to Similan Islands

Greeley Pulitzer

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30 dolphins greet visitors to Similan Islands | The Thaiger

Tourists were treated to the sight of a school of dolphins in the Similan Islands off the Phang Nga coast on Sunday.

Tour organisers said that around 30 dolphins swam close to the boat six or seven miles offshore, creating excitement for passengers. It was the first time dolphins had been seen in the vicinity since October 15.

The Similan Islands National Park director said they were bottlenose dolphins and were among several species now returning to the area following a five-year closure of the park for environmental rehabilitation. Food is again plentiful there for them, he said.

Tourists are forbidden to feed wildlife lest the free handouts alter the animals’ natural behaviour, and the park’s waters are also very sensitive to contamination from human disease and marine debris, according to the director.

SOURCE: nationthailand.com

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Patong

Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms

The Thaiger

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Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms | The Thaiger

by Sophie Deviller

Hotels on Thailand’s most popular holiday island are being forced to slash prices, with rooms left vacant and beaches sparse as Thailand’s tourism chiefs struggle with a plunge in Chinese visitors caused by the US trade war and a stronger baht. Phuket was the most visited destination in the country last year, after Bangkok, and a good gauge of the state of its crucial travel industry.

Tourism accounts for 18% of Thailand’s gross domestic product and Chinese holidaymakers make up more than a quarter of total arrivals. But while 2.2 million people from the country visited in 2018, according to official figures, the numbers for January-September were down almost 20% year on year.

Claude de Crissey, the French Honorary Consul in Phuket and owner of about 40 rooms in the Patong Beach area, says Chinese tourists are usually present even during the current low season.

“That was not the case this year,” he said, adding he had to lower his prices by as much as 50%.

The problem is not only in Phuket, with hotels also struggling to fill rooms in the seaside resort of Pattaya on the mainland and on Koh Samui.

Trade tensions with the US have already made some Chinese reluctant to take holidays owing to uncertainty back home, while the Thai baht has risen about 10% against the yuan this year.

A boating disaster off Phuket’s coast that killed 47 Chinese holidaymakers in July 2018 also scared some off.

“We are worried,” said an industry insider, declining to be named due to the sensitivity of the topic in a country where tourism provides tens of thousands of jobs. Adding to the headache is the fact that more than 3,000 new hotel rooms are being constructed on the island, raising the question of who will fill them.

Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms | News by The Thaiger

“In terms of business, it’s not good,” said Kongsak Khoopongsakorn, vice-president of the association of hotels in Thailand and director of Vijitt Resort.

“Because … we have more hotels, more rooms to sell, we have more restaurants, more coffee shops.”

Still, tourism authority chairman Yuthasak Supasorn said he remained “optimistic.”

“We should reach our goal of 39.8 million foreign visitors.”

However, that is only up from 38.2 million in 2018, much less than the jump seen from the previous year’s total of 35.6 million.

Counting on India

Now hoteliers and tour package operators are targeting visitors from elsewhere, particularly India, which experts see as a huge untapped market.

A rapid expansion of the middle class in India, increased direct flights and visa-free travel have prompted Thailand to revise forecasts upwards.

It now expects two million Indian tourists this year, after an increase of nearly 25% on-year in the first seven months. But for now, the lower arrivals is evident on the streets of Phuket.

“I’ve never seen anything as bad as what it is at the moment,” said Paul Scott from Australia, who said he has been coming to Thailand for 15 years.

He mainly blamed the stronger baht for the drop-off but also the fact that Thailand wasn’t the untouched vacation paradise it once was. “Now it’s not so new … and it’s not cheap,” he said.

SOURCE: AFP

Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms | News by The Thaiger

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