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Legal advocates say federal budget can ease ‘crisis’ in courts, but more should be done

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People working in the justice system say the recent federal budget made some moves that could improve access to justice in Canada — but more needs to be done to address swelling case backlogs in courts across the country.

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UK anxious about Indian variant, PM Johnson says

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Author of the article: LONDON — Britain is anxious about the spread of the novel coronavirus variant first detected in India and rules nothing out, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Thursday. “We are anxious about it – it has been spreading,” Johnson said, adding that there would be meetings later on Thursday to discuss…

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LONDON — Britain is anxious about the spread of the novel coronavirus variant first detected in India and rules nothing out, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Thursday.

“We are anxious about it – it has been spreading,” Johnson said, adding that there would be meetings later on Thursday to discuss what to do.

“We’re ruling nothing out,” Johnson said.

“At the moment I can see nothing that dissuades me from thinking we’ll be able to go ahead on Monday and June 21 everywhere,” he added, referring to further steps to ease lockdown. (Reporting by William James; writing by Guy Faulconbridge, editing by Andy Bruce)

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Soccer-Madrid judge asks top EU Court to decide on Super League legality

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Author of the article: MADRID — A Madrid court has asked the European Court of Justice to establish if FIFA and UEFA, the world and continental soccer governing bodies, are breaching EU competition law by preventing clubs from creating a breakaway European Super League. The commerical court in Madrid has also asked Europe’s top court…

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MADRID — A Madrid court has asked the European Court of Justice to establish if FIFA and UEFA, the world and continental soccer governing bodies, are breaching EU competition law by preventing clubs from creating a breakaway European Super League.

The commerical court in Madrid has also asked Europe’s top court if FIFA and UEFA are able to impose restrictions or penalties on clubs who remain part of the planned competition.

The Super League was announced last month by 12 founding clubs but collapsed less than 48 hours after it was launched following an outcry by fans, governments, players and managers.

Nine clubs — Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal, AC Milan, Inter Milan and Atletico Madrid — officially withdrew and accepted financial penalties from UEFA for their part in the process.

Each of the clubs also signed a commitment declaration with the continental governing body last week.

However, three of the founders – Real Madrid, Barcelona and Juventus – have not distanced themselves from the project.

UEFA on Wednesday announced it had appointed disciplinary inspectors to conduct an investigation into whether the three clubs had violated UEFA’s legal framework.

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The Madrid court, which last month passed a holding order that FIFA, UEFA and all its associated federations must not adopt “any measure that prohibits, restricts, limits or conditions in any way” the Super League, has asked the EU’s highest court to rule on the matter.

The court document, released on Thursday, mainly centers around Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

Article 101 prohibits cartels and other agreements which could disrupt free competition in the bloc, while 102 prevents undertakings who hold a dominant position in a market from abusing that position.

The document also asks the EU court to rule if FIFA and UEFA dictating to an economic operator from a member state constitutes a breach of multiple other articles. (Reporting by Joseph Walker; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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High-powered Astros open four-game series against Rangers

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Author of the article: The Houston Astros will look to push their winning streak to three games when they host the Texas Rangers to open a four-game series on Thursday. The Houston Astros entered play second in the American League in runs (181), hits (318), doubles (72), batting (.260) and OPS (.749) before banging out…

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The Houston Astros will look to push their winning streak to three games when they host the Texas Rangers to open a four-game series on Thursday.

The Houston Astros entered play second in the American League in runs (181), hits (318), doubles (72), batting (.260) and OPS (.749) before banging out 12 hits in a 9-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday.

All five of the Astros’ extra-base hits cleared the fence, fitting for a team with five players with at least five home runs: Kyle Tucker (eight), Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel (seven each), and Alex Bregman and Carlos Correa (five apiece). Tucker, Alvarez and Gurriel all homered Wednesday, as did Jose Altuve and Chas McCormick.

“Homers come in bunches,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said. “We were going to some ballparks that weren’t home-run friendly and the ones that were like Colorado were extremely cold or it was snowing. It seems like it’s contagious. Guys are getting good pitches to hit and keeping pitchers in the stretch. Hitting’s contagious, and just keep (the homers) coming.”

Right-hander Cristian Javier (3-1, 2.90 ERA) gets the starting nod for the Astros on Thursday.

After stringing together three consecutive scoreless appearances, Javier has allowed eight runs on eight hits and six walks with 12 strikeouts over his past two starts and 10 1/3 innings. The Astros dropped both games, including an 8-4 setback to the Toronto Blue Jays on May 8, a decision that resulted in the first loss of the season for Javier.

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In two career starts against the Rangers, Javier is 2-0 with a 2.92 ERA with nine strikeouts against three walks in 12 1/3 innings.

Right-hander Mike Foltynewicz (1-3, 4.50 ERA) will start the series opener for the Rangers. Selected by the Astros in the first round (19th overall) in the 2010 draft, Foltynewicz was 0-1 with a 5.30 ERA over 16 games with the Astros in 2014 before being traded to the Atlanta Braves prior to the 2015 season. He ranks second on the Rangers staff with 40 innings pitched but his 11 home runs allowed are the most in the majors.

The Rangers won three consecutive games behind Foltynewicz prior to his last start against the Seattle Mariners on May 7, when he allowed four runs on six hits and one walk with five strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings.

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Foltynewicz will face the Astros for the first time in his career.

After winning seven of nine games to climb back to .500, the Rangers dropped both games of a road interleague set with the San Francisco Giants, including a 4-2 decision on Tuesday. That setback concluded a stretch where the Rangers played for 19 consecutive days, and there were subtle signs in Texas’ performance indicating that Wednesday’s off day came just in the nick of time.

“I think I said it before the game,” Rangers manager Chris Woodward said prior to the series finale in San Francisco. “I said our guys didn’t look fatigued but I felt like the 19 games were wearing on us a little bit. But I’m not going to make excuses.”

–Field Level Media

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