Saturday, 05 December 2009

[Sport - Football] FIFA World Cup 2010 Groups

The graphic says it all... These are the groups of the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

Phase 3 of ticket sales goes on sale today. The match schedule (downloadable pdf) is available here (all information in this post has been obtained from the official FIFA website).

Thursday, 19 November 2009

[Sport - Soccer] FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers

Its been decided, the playoffs are over! All 32 nations which will compete in the FIFA 2010 World Cup have been determined. In just over 200 days the teams listed below will converge in South Africa for the much anticipated contest. (Click on image to enlarge).

There were a few upsets in the playoffs. Pity Gus Hiddink could not manage to get the very talented Russian side through the play-offs, Slovenia qualified at their expense. The other major upset (this one I was happy about) was that the Algerians beat the much fancied Egyptian side (while Egypt is a good side they've always been a bunch of faking divers and I hate them for that). The Greeks (in my opinion the dullest side in world football) managed to get past Ukraine by a single goal, sigh. But undoubtedly the Republic of Ireland with the unluckiest team (the irony) when it came to the failing to make it right at the very end. The saddest thing was that they were leading the much fancied French side in Paris until Thierry Henry blatantly handled the ball in the penalty area (twice!) to keep it in play and then crossed it in to what resulted in the goal which France drew level and enabled them to go through on aggregate.

The above information and world cup logo were obtained from the Official FIFA website.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

[Sport] FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers (as of 15 November 2009)

With only 6 more spots to be filled the following from the following playoffs the team lineup is looking concrete. Thankfully the major African teams have qualified this time round, its hard to determine the African qualifiers due to a high level of inconsistency (at the 2006 World Cup in Germany the African qualifiers were drastically different to the 2002 World Cup in Korea & Japan). The following teams still have a chance of making it:

Egypt / Algeria

South/Central America
Uruguay / Costa Rica

Ireland / France +
Portugal / Bosnia-Herzegovina +
Greece / Ukraine +
Russia / Slovenia

The above information and world cup logo were obtained from the Official FIFA website.

Thursday, 15 October 2009

[Sport] FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers (as of 14 October 2009)


Just 9 spots left! The above information and world cup logo were obtained from the Official FIFA website.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

[Sport] FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers (as of 10 October 2009)

- Ghana
- Ivory Coast
- South Africa (Hosts)

- Japan
- South Korea
- North Korea
- Australia

- Spain
- England
- Holland
- Denmark
- Germany
- Serbia
- Italy

South America
- Brazil
- Paraguay
- Chile

North, Central America & Caribbean
- Mexico

13 spots are yet to be decided. The above information and world cup logo were obtained from the Official FIFA website.

Friday, 02 October 2009

[Format] Post titles to get labels

As of October 2009 'Peering Inside' will adopt a labelling system in an attempt to reduce some of the chaos brought about by the random nature of the topics posted on the blog. A word/short phrase enclosed in square brackets will included with the title to indicate the category of the post.

Typical classifications will be:
[Internet apps]

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

[Business] When will IKEA open stores in South Africa???

In case you haven't heard the name IKEA (which is possible if you live in South Africa) let me give you a brief background. IKEA is a retailer with Swedish roots, which pioneered flat-pack design furniture at affordable prices, and is now the world's largest furniture retailer. Now, you may ask what the big deal is about a furniture store, after all we have our fair share of those but the thing is until you've been to an IKEA store you won't realise how innovative, competitive and just how much better they are than any old South African furniture store.

How are they different? To start off... they've got variety (to give you an indication the average IKEA store size is over 25000m sq), their products are designed to be practical solutions for everyday usage, and they are "flat packaged" in ingenious ways to make transporting easier, all this while maintaining competitive pricing made possible by large scale production.

Now isn't it a pity that there are no IKEA stores in South Africa, they've got stores in just about every other country that's worth having a presence in. There is a huge potential for a opening a few IKEA stores in South Afica particularly in the booming Gauteng metropolis where a the majority of the country's working class flock to for well paid employment. The densely populated locale with numerous first time home owners presents a massive opportunity for a successful store offering. The cities of Cape Town and Durban would also be prime locations for stores (not to mention that the stores imported products would have to enter the country somewhere along the coast so having a store nearby would be convenient).

Its a pity that someone who has the ability to make the above a reality may never get to read this post, the result being a lose-lose situation for both the South African public and IKEA.

Friday, 11 September 2009

FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers (as of 11 September 2009)

- Ghana
- South Africa (Hosts)

- Japan
- South Korea
- North Korea
- Australia

- Spain
- England
- Holland

South America
- Brazil
- Paraguay

With 3 more teams qualifying there are now 21 remaining spots. The above information and world cup logo were obtained from the Official FIFA website.

Monday, 07 September 2009

FIFA World Cup 2010 Qualifiers (as of 7 September 2009)

The following 8 countries have already confirmed their places in the upcoming FIFA 2010 World Cup to be held in South Africa.

- South Africa (Hosts)
- Ghana (Africa)
- Netherlands (Europe)
- Brazil (South America)
- Australia (Asia)
- Japan (Asia)
- South Korea (Asia)
- North Korea (Asia)

Most regions' qualifiers are yet to be completed and the remaining 24 slots are still up for grabs.

Information and world cup logo were obtained from the Official FIFA website.

Monday, 06 July 2009

The Confederations Cup Experience

So the regional champs have departed following the confederations cup. It was a tournament that will probably be remembered most for the rise to prominence of the USA who made it to the final, and though they ended up losing to Brazil they displayed a quality of play and ability to score against highly rated opponents. This will help shed the 'technically inferior' tag they have held for having an easier qualification route to the world cups(than teams in the more competitive European and South American regions) perhaps hinting that they didn't really deserve to participate.

The football which was generally of a very high standard (with the exception of New Zealand perhaps who made it pretty obvious that they were a class below the rest). The hosts, South Africa, were fortunate to qualify for the semi-finals by getting through on goal difference in what was the weaker of the two groups. Bafana Bafana's biggest weakness remains their inability to convert goal scoring opportunities the way their more illustrious opponents can. South Africa don't look likely to progress far in the World cup to be held next year.

What about the tournament organisation? As a direct witness to this (being a spectator at 3 of the matches including the final) I can say that it was generally acceptable though level of organisation did defer by stadium. The efforts of the organisers to improve on the existing methods of parking when attending sports events locally has to be commended. So called 'Park-and-Ride' locations were allocated in the vicinity of the stadiums. A spectator would thus arrive and park his/her car at the designated area and then take a bus ride (free of charge) to the stadium (in Pretoria the bus convoy was actually given a police motorbike escort, enabling the buses to travel to the stadium without having to stop at the traffic lights). After the matches there was expectedly a delay in leaving the parking area due to the large number of cars exiting but on one occasion the cops actually blocked off traffic from other directions to increase flow of the spectators leaving which helped quite a bit.

Kickoff for the matches were either at 4pm or 8:30pm local time. It has to be said that the June-July period is the winter season (this being the Southern Hemisphere) and some of the late matches were extremely cold. At the final in Johannesburg I was seated high up in the stands behind the goal post on what was a rather chilly evening and the gusts of icy wind left me shivering despite having a jacket, scarf and beanie! I was left wishing I had brought a blanket along like some of the spectators sitting around me (will remember that for next year :).
Don't think the organisers could have done much about the weather aside from holding the matches earlier in the day but there are probably issues with TV viewership in timezones behind South Africa (GMT +2) that led to the matches being held when they were.

Thursday, 23 April 2009

IPL Gauteng Fixtures

Click on graphic to enlarge. Some of the Wanderers matches are now available for sale!

Friday, 03 April 2009

IPL Season 2

Didn't feel like posting anything in the first quarter of 2009 but can't afford to anymore... There's just too much happening :)

Starting of with the IPL which is now being hosted in South Africa! (Bloody Pakistani terrorists!) ... Should it now be called SAPL??? The answer, no! cause everything is still run by the Indians (aka BCCI) and they're getting all the money! But for those of us based in SA, hooooray... and for those of us based in a city with a match venue an even bigger yippppeeeee...

Anyways... here's the ticket pricing for the various venues... (click on image to enlarge).

Monday, 05 January 2009

TomTom maps in South Africa now have 'Safety Camera indications'

TomTom has now provided the 'safety camera' service for South African roads... What this means is drivers' can be alerted when approaching locations of speed cameras :)

This update is available as a free download till then end of January 2009, New models will come with the service pre-installed and 1 free up date will be available via HOME. Further updates will be available on a subscription basis at a cost of 399 Rand per year.