If you visited the Blue Ridge Parkway anytime between April 8 and May 12 this year, you might have seen an odd sight – a man backpacking its entire 469-mile length in a northerly direction. I say odd because most people visit this national treasure via car, RV, motorcycle or bicycle.He would have been toting an ancient, green, external-frame backpack which, if closely inspected, was still functional only through the assistance of duct tape and parachute cord.Except for his snappy-colored aluminum trekking poles, you might have mistaken him for a reincarnation of pioneering backpacker Colin Fletcher, author of 1960s-era books like The Thousand Mile Summer and The Man Who Walked Through Time. He would have been wearing a similar brown fedora and walking that same slow, deliberate gait.The man you might have noticed during your unseasonably cool spring visit would have been me.I can further confirm – with permanently wrinkled hands and feet – that it was also an unseasonably wet spring, as in seven inches of rain during the section between Roanoke, Va. and the Peaks of Otter.And why would one choose to walk that far down a ribbon of asphalt famous for seemingly unending steep grades and ankle-grinding, super-elevated curves rather than drive it?Simple. Ten years ago I tested and proved my theory that the most scenic drive in the world was also the most scenic walk in the world. Permit me to briefly rewind back to 2003.I had been retired from federal service only a year, and a book idea was rattling around in my head. The stories and experiences of having worked two summer seasons as an interpretive ranger and twelve years as a protection ranger on the Parkway were screaming to be published. It would be my first book, and I had to find it.So, on September 1 of that year, I strapped on the same old backpack loaded with the same old sleeping bag and tent and other necessities and began a sentimental journey down the Parkway southbound from Milepost 0 near Waynesboro, Va. looking for a unique backpacking experience and forgotten memories.Three days later I found the book at Boston Knob Overlook. What a story unfolded as I continued a 41-day, random interaction with Parkway visitors, employees, neighbors, wildlife and weather.By the time I reached the end of the journey at Milepost 469 near Cherokee, N.C., my head was about to explode with a book already written inside it. The Blue Ridge Parkway by Foot: A Park Ranger’s Memoir hit the shelves in 2007.By the time 2013 rolled in, I was getting a little anxious for another mega-mile hike and began toying with the idea of a second, ten-year anniversary hike of the Blue Ridge Parkway. This time, however, the thought came to walk it in reverse – northbound – during the spring season rather than fall.Left: Author on 2003 Parkway trek near Pineola, N.C. Photo: Travis Proctor. Right: Author on 2013 Parkway trek near Hillsville, Va.I would witness the season of rebirth this time rather than the season of decline, the fresh bloom of serviceberry instead of the musty bloom of goldenrod, bold springs versus those nearly dry. Rather than staring into the sun, I’d have it mostly to my back.Mere days before beginning, I accidentally learned that my plan coincided with the 25th anniversary of Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Executive Director Susan Mills and I quickly agreed to a hasty marriage of the two anniversaries and set up my journey as a per-mile fundraiser for their organization. Pledges can still be made at www.friendsbrp.org.As I began the murderous climb out of Cherokee, fully supplied, I shuddered at a statistic I had computed ten years earlier – one climbs a vertical distance of about nine miles over the full length of the Parkway. The downhill muscles would also have to brake the same distance. My dogs were already starting to bark.One could drive the full length of the thing nonstop in less than twelve hours at an average speed of 40 mph. So much easier, I thought. But such a visit would offer only visual treats that would disappear in seconds.Not content with a mere baptism by sprinkling, I was going again for the complete immersion experience. I wanted to hear again the lone coyote howling in the night. I wanted to smell again the sweet aroma of the teaberry leaf. I wanted to taste again the pure mountain water. So off I plunged into its very heart.Again came the random surprises, trail magic, observations, realizations and revelations I knew would come to a sojourner moving at a whopping average speed of 1.5 mph.For the first time in my life, I was struck by lightning while camped near a place called, of all things, Graveyard Fields. Fortunately, a tree next to my tent took the direct hit, but a root must have routed some of the current my way. Until a quick assessment determined that my heart was still beating and no body parts were smoking, I was ready to forsake the Great Outdoors.I saw some snow this time – at least the remnants from the last winter storm on Apple Orchard Mountain, the highest point on the Parkway in Virginia.Remnants of snow on Apple Orchard Mountain – the highest point on the Parkway motor road in Virginia.Mr. Bear made an appearance at close range – about fifty yards from my tent near dark one night. Two claps of the hand and a blood-curdling yell sent him running, and I quickly ate the last two slices of pizza that surely attracted him. I had known better but thought it a safe bet so close to the city of Asheville.Ten years ago I kept a road kill log. Live wildlife sightings seemed a more refined approach this time around. Some favorites I chose to count included: 44 red efts, 3 indigo buntings, 5 rabbits, 11 grouse, 11 turkeys, 40 deer and 2 bears.In the category of strange, I witnessed three sizeable rocks fall from cliffs onto the roadway, heard two large trees fall in the woods and found two waterlogged cell phones, one active debit card, one dollar bill, one nickel and five pennies.Some things had changed in ten years – some for the better, some for the worse.At several points along the way, I told people it appeared that the Parkway corridor had experienced a fair amount of seismic activity since 2003. To their puzzled looks I noted that many of the grades seemed steeper, then quickly offered that it probably had more to do with me knocking on the door of early Social Security retirement.Ten years ago the stately hemlock tree adorned the rich coves throughout many sections of the Parkway. Today they are gone, gone, gone, victim to a tiny bug known as the hemlock woolly adelgid. It’s as sad a story as the loss of the chestnut tree in the Appalachians a few decades ago.In better news, a new large mammal is being sighted on the southern end of the Parkway near Cherokee and Maggie Valley thanks to a successful elk reintroduction program in the nearby Great Smoky Mountains National Park. As the elk population continues to increase through natural reproduction, the migration could very well continue far enough to return validity to places along the Parkway like Elk Pasture Gap.Playing ranger again, I observed far fewer skid marks, gouge marks in the pavement, impacted guard rails and bits of glass and chrome – evidence of motor vehicle accidents. Chief Ranger Steve Stinnett later confirmed that the accident rate on the Parkway had, in fact, declined by about 50% over the past ten years. Stinnett also said that better signage had virtually eliminated fatalities in several “trouble curves.” Good news for all.The impact of sequestration this year adds more woe to a park which has already experienced a debilitating decline in its annual operating budget. Many facilities will have delayed openings. Some, like Smart View Picnic Area near Floyd, Va., will be closed the entire 2013 season. Several family reunions – held in this beautiful place for decades – will now have to convene elsewhere.Lack of funding equals lack of manpower equals milepost markers out of plumb and grass unmowed.Thank goodness the natural water supplies were plentiful this spring; hardly a facility was open whereby I could obtain tap water. I and thousands of other visitors found even fewer places to use the bathroom. Where I did remains classified.Closed restrooms at E.B. Jeffress Park.Ten years ago, Bunnie and Russell Richards of Boone, N.C. read of my walk in their local newspaper and speculated I would be hungry. Of meager means themselves, they tracked me down and offered gifts of cheese, crackers and a large homegrown tomato. I had never been more humbled.The natural course of life has taken both of them but, as I passed by Lost Cove Cliffs Overlook, I could feel their gentle spirits again in the wind.It’s the people, you see, that make the Parkway experience the ultimate it can be.Take J.C. Thompson, for instance, of Check, Va. When he rolled up one morning in his truck and asked if I needed anything, I replied boldly, honestly and forthrightly.“Yes. I could use a cheeseburger and a Mountain Dew.”A bit puzzled, he scratched his head and then smiled.“Don’t have them with me but jump in. I know where to find them.”Ten minutes later we pulled into a country store, and I concluded that moment that being homeless was not so bad when equipped with a credit card and a concealed gun permit, and in the company of trail angels like J.C.There were other times when just a few minutes of conversation and the exchange of something as simple as a banana was all it took to reconfirm one’s faith in the goodness of people. Carter Krewson did that for me one afternoon. His bicycle journey had begun months earlier from his home in Redding, Ca. The Parkway was going to be his final leg.Bicyclist Carter Krewson from Redding, Ca.I thought it pretty cool what he was doing at his young age. He thought it pretty cool what I was doing at mine.As I sputtered the final mile into Rockfish Gap with only a few Reese’s Pieces remaining in my food bag, a Joni Mitchell song came to mind, and I realized there were really two very different Blue Ridge Parkways – the one northbound and the one southbound. From both sides now, I had seen it all.Parkway entrance sign at Rockfish Gap.© 2013 Timothy Pegram
Public members needed for Bar Examiners April 15, 2005 Regular News Public members needed for Bar Examiners Members of the public are invited to volunteer on or before June 15 for a three-year term on the Florida Board of Board Examiners. The Supreme Court will appoint two public members to serve on the Board of Bar Examiners.A public member volunteer should possess education or work-related experience such as educational testing, accounting, statistical analysis, medicine, psychology, or related sciences. A bachelor’s degree is required. Lawyers are not eligible. Public board members should be willing and able to devote about three days a month to the work of the board, and to travel to various Florida locations to attend meetings and the bar examination. Travel and subsistence expenses are reimbursed. Board members should be interested in seeking to improve the examination and its administration, and to evaluate carefully the character and fitness of applicants seeking admission to the Bar. Board members should be free of adverse interests, conflicting duties, or inconsistent obligations that may interfere or appear to interfere with the proper administration of the board’s mandate.The vacancies will occur on November 1, with the expiration of the terms of Dr. Mary Harris Moore of Tallahassee and Yvonne Loggins-Coleman of Orlando. Applications are available at www.flabar.org and may be submitted by faxing it to (850) 414-6822 or by mailing it to The Florida Board of Bar Examiners, 1891 Eider Court, Tallahassee 32399-1750. For more information contact Eleanor Mitchell Hunter, executive director of the board at (850) 487-1292.
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Suffolk County police released a composite sketch of a dead woman whose remains were found in East Setauket five months ago in the hope that someone can help investigators identify her.The unidentified woman’s skeletal remains were found on the side of the Greenway Bicycle Path near Gnarled Hollow Road at 4 p.m. on March 22, police said.Investigators believe the remains were had been there for about a year before the discovery was made. The woman is believed to have been white or Hispanic, 30 to 50 years old, between 5-feet,-3 inches and 5-feet, 9-inches tall with poor dental work.Homicide Squad detectives ask anyone with information on the identity of this woman to call them at 631-852-6392 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.
Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionMLK Day: We have a long way to goThe Jan. 21 edition of The Daily Gazette illustrated American racism well.Gazette first page: 1) A long article under the headline “Siena poll: Most say racism persists.” 2) A photo of a parade of largely segregated Union College students, celebrating MLK’s legacy. 3) A long article under the headline “Union students rally to MLK’s message,” continued on page 7 with large photo of Union College’s Dr. Gretchel Hathaway, minority dean of diversity and inclusion, lecturing on MLK’s legacy. First page Local Section: Three photos of fully segregated Americans acting “in the spirit of MLK.” Opinion page: Sympathetic letter suggesting NAACP change its name to eliminate the words “Colored People.”All reminders that earlier this month we celebrated the only national holiday we have that is based on a single person. (in itself racist?) If the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. were to return, I suppose he would be shocked to see what we have done to this nation in his name.From his famous speech: “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” What did we get: A nation ruled by “affirmative action,” judged by the color of the skin. That’s precisely what MLK wanted eliminated.This nation will never eliminate racism until we eliminate government racism and help each other on the basis of need, not government edict.Clyde MaughanSchenectadySidewalk plan has plenty of problemsWe are writing to express our concerns regarding the Schenectady Sidewalk Initiative Pilot Project that was rolled out on Ardsley Avenue, and is supposed to roll out in April on our street, DeCamp Avenue.Under this project, residents are expected to pay assessed fees to replace the sidewalks.On Ardsley, residents got “sticker shock” when their tax bills indicated that they were to pay nearly twice as much as they were told, now that the work is done.New bills are supposed to be generated to correct the error.When we were unable to obtain information from the city, The Daily Gazette provided information that allowed us to review expected fees for DeCamp residents; like Ardsley, the costs appear that they, too, will be close to twice what was projected by the city.Some streets have been upgraded in recent years, with no assessed fees, yet others have not. As of today, we still have nothing in writing on when the sidewalks will be repaired, what the paving schedule is or what the actual costs will be.It seems to us that this sidewalk project is not viable.Residents should not have to hound the city to get streets paved and get signed petitions to get sidewalks repaired under a special initiative, especially when downtown and many other streets exactly like DeCamp (Wright, Parkwood and Glenwood) are upgraded with no fees required from residents.This is Councilman John Polimeni’s initiative. What is your response?Laurie and David BacheldorSchenectadyLaurie Bacheldor is an officer for the 12309 Neighborhood Association and vice president of Schenectady United Neighborhoods.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Make a game plan for voting. Do it now.EDITORIAL: No more extensions on vehicle inspectionsEDITORIAL: Take a role in police reformsHIGH NOTES: PPEs, fighting hunger, backpacks and supplies for kidsEDITORIAL: No chickens in city without strong regs
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Topics : Other products that saw a price hike include eggs, onions, sugar and cigarettes. The transportation sector, however, saw a deflation of 0.43 percent in March with consumers limiting or canceling their trips.“The air transportation fare became a dominant deflation contributor at 0.06 percent of March’s inflation number,” Suhariyanto said.According to BPS data, Indonesia’s core inflation stood at 0.29 percent in March, bringing the annual rate to 2.87 percent, while administered prices and volatile food prices saw a deflation of 0.19 percent and 0.15 percent respectively, resulting in annual inflation rates of 0.16 percent and 6.41 percent.Staple food prices were generally under control thanks to the government’s intervention and the looming harvest season, said Permata Bank economist Josua Pardede.The government took action to curb soaring prices of garlic and onion by temporarily removing the import licensing requirement in March. Under the policy, importers no longer needed import permit letters from the Trade Ministry and import recommendations for horticulture products from the Agriculture Ministry. The policy was in effect from March 19 to May 31.Read also: Panic buying hurts consumption growth in the long run, analysts sayJosua said he expected the inflation level to remain low in April despite the usual price hike during Ramadan.“Normally, demand for goods will increase during Ramadan but the holy month won’t heavily affect the inflation rate this year as it coincides with the harvesting season,” he said.He projected this year’s full-year inflation to stay benign at between 2.9 and 3.3 percent, still within Bank Indonesia’s target of 2 to 4 percent as the pandemic was expected to slow domestic consumption and economic growth. At the same time, the government’s social distancing instruction and quarantine measures in several regions would disrupt goods and services distribution in general.“However, the risks might be offset by the government’s policy to maintain supplies, particularly those of staples, and by its stimuli, such as electricity discounts,” he said.Andry said he expected this year’s inflation would reach 3.25 percent.Read also: Calls mount to suppress increase of basic food prices ahead of Ramadan“This relatively higher inflation forecast compared to the 2019 realization of 2.72 percent is caused by a higher risk of volatile inflation, particularly food inflation due to the COVID-19 outbreak, which has limited the food supply,” he said. The stable inflation, he went on to say, would support BI’s accommodative monetary policy in 2020.“Together with the Fed’s dovish stance and agenda to support the domestic economy, we see that BI will hold the policy rate at 4.5 percent until the end of 2020,” Andry said. Indonesia recorded a benign inflation rate in March as the government’s measures to maintain food prices remain in check but the COVID-19 pandemic poses risks to this year’s outlook, economists have said.The consumer price index (CPI) stood at 0.1 percent in March, slightly lower than the 0.11 percent recorded in the same month last year, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) announced on Wednesday. The annual inflation rate was recorded at 2.96 percent, much higher than the 2.48 percent in March last year but lower than the 2.98 percent in February.“March inflation was due to the price hike of commodities in the personal care and food and beverage expenditure groups,” Bank Mandiri chief economist Andry Asmoro wrote in a research note on Wednesday. “The inflation was related to COVID-19 as the outbreak increased demand for hygiene products and online orders of food and beverage due to the social distancing policy.” The announcement of the country’s first two confirmed COVID-19 cases in early March prompted Indonesians to stock up on hygiene products such as soaps, face masks and hand sanitizers, resulting in a depleted supply of products and soaring prices. The number of infections skyrocketed in a matter of days, prompting the government to call on citizens to work, study and pray from home.Read also: Garlic prices push annual inflation to 2.98% in FebruaryBPS data revealed that the personal care group saw a 0.99 percent price hike in March while food and beverage recorded an inflation of 0.36 percent.Meanwhile, gold, a safe haven asset in times of global uncertainty, became a dominant commodity that contributed to the inflation in March, said BPS head Suhariyanto. Bullion sold by state-owned miner PT Aneka Tambang has surged around 20 percent so far this year.
Brisbane’s property market performed well in the past quarter with median house prices reaching a record high. Picture: AAP/ Ric FrearsonBRISBANE’S house prices have hit a record high with new figures revealing the median had now hit $670,000.While the property market continued to cool in southern states, new figures released by the Real Estate Institute of Queensland showed the median house price within the Brisbane local government area was 3.1 per cent higher in the March quarter.REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella said the growth demonstrated “admirable resilience’’ in the local market.She said the price rise was buoyed by steady population growth and strong demand and a lack of new listings. LANDMARK HOME HITS SALE HIGH Stock on market was down to just 6.1 per cent — the lowest in the state.As a result Ms Mercorella said buyers had to act fast if they wanted to snare a property with days on market now at just 32 days.Matt Lancashire of Ray White New Farm, said the past quarter had been a strong one for the Brisbane market“Our last quarter was the most positive quarter in this financial year for us,’’ he said.Mr Lancashire said the unit market in the inner city was starting to fire again and importantly Brisbane’s property market including the luxury end, was seen as really good value.He said in the past couple of months there had been a huge amount of interstate interest in the market. SUN AND SAVINGS LURE SOUTHERN BUYERS The report said the outlook for the house market in the Brisbane local government area remained solid while parts of the unit market continued to face difficult conditions because of oversupply.“We expect to see greater equilibrium between supply and demand over the next 12 to 24 months,’’ it said.More from newsNew apartments released at idyllic retirement community Samford Grove Presented by Parks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus18 hours agoREIQ chairman Peter Brewer said the figures showed that Queensland was a “safe haven’’ for property investment.“Interstate migration is still strong, that helps give us stability around prices as well,’’ he said.Mr Brewer said with pledges for spending on infrastructure through Federal and State governments on things like Queensland roads, property was becoming more attractive here.“Overall it is a pretty healthy report for Queensland compared to other states,’’ he said.Mr Brewer said growth in Brisbane and Queensland was “steady, nice, comfortable and sensible’’ and that wasn’t a bad way to be.“Real estate is still the number one spectator sport and people still watch it with passion and we are very, very, safe.’’Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 13:43Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -13:43 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels576p576p480p480p256p256p228p228pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenPrestige property with Elizabeth Tilley13:44Other council areas outside of the Brisbane area also performed well during the quarter. The Logan local government area delivered one of the strongest performances during the quarter with its median house price up 4 per cent to $395,000.The report found the “lifestyle markets’’ of the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast had continued to drive the growth of sales and rentals.The Gold Coast median house price was down by 0.3 per cent in the quarter, but grew by 6 per cent in the past 12 months to $620,000, the highest growth in the state, while on the Sunshine Coast the median house price rose by 2.3 per cent for the quarter and 5.2 per cent for the past 12 months to $576,250.
LocalNews Sports enthusiasts to be awarded for contribution to sports by: – May 2, 2012 Share Sharing is caring! Share Tweet Share 7 Views no discussions Photo credit: epthinking-blogspot.comSeveral sports enthusiasts will on Wednesday be awarded for their contribution to the development of sports in Dominica when the Sports Division hosts its 6th Annual National Sports Awards.The Annual event which has as its theme, “Spurring on Sporting Achievement through National Recognition” will commence at 7pm at the Fort Young Hotel in Roseau.The main feature of this award ceremony will be the declaration of the Sportsman and Woman of the Year for 2011. Other notable awards will be the Male and Female Youth Athletes of 2011.A total of 34 awards will be presented to deserving sports persons and organizations. Addresses at the function will come from Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit, Sports Minister Justina Charles along with other government officials.The National Sports Awards is the Ministry’s way of showing due recognition to sports personalities and organizations for their steady contribution towards sports development. Dominica Vibes News have been reliably informed that Prime Minister Skerrit will use the forum to announce an additional title for Dominica’s off spinner Shane Shillingford who made history here last week by capturing ten wickets.He has already been named a goodwill ambassador and will receive a diplomatic passport.Dominica Vibes News
What could prove to be Advocaat’s last game in charge unravelled alarmingly in front of a crowd of 42,932 as the Black Cats extended their run without a Barclays Premier League victory to 11 games stretching back to last season while collecting just their third point of the current campaign. West Ham ultimately surrendered their 100 per cent league record on the road this season, but will take some comfort from their fightback. Whatever the future may hold for their head coach, his players chose their moment to turn in their best 45 minutes of the season to race into a 2-0 lead which could have been even greater. Unfortunately, the first half lasted significantly longer and it was in added time that the Hammers grabbed a lifeline they scarcely deserved. Fletcher started the ball rolling with just 10 minutes gone when, after Jenkinson had hauled Fabio Borini to the floor in pursuit of Yann M’Vila’s ball over the top, M’Vila pulled the free-kick square to the Scotland international and he slammed it first-time past the helpless Adrian. The Black Cats were simply irresistible with the midfield trio of Lee Cattermole, Ola Toivonen and the hugely impressive M’Vila dominant, and it was the Frenchman who capitalised on Winston Reid’s hurried clearance from Payet’s under-cooked 22nd-minute pass to slide the ball into the path of Lens and watch him chip the stranded keeper and score off the underside of the crossbar. The game could have been effectively over before the break with Borini shooting narrowly wide on two occasions, the first of them after being played through by Fletcher’s clever flick. But having failed to kill off the contest, Sunderland were made to pay in stoppage time when Victor Moses created half a yard of space for himself on the left and crossed for the fast-arriving Jenkinson to sweep home. The 68-year-old had tears in his eyes as Jeremain Lens struck to make it 2-0 after just 22 minutes, with Steven Fletcher having opened the scoring. But his emotions were altered dramatically when Carl Jenkinson pulled one back in first-half injury time and Dimitri Payet levelled following Lens’ dismissal for a second bookable offence. Dick Advocaat could only look on in horror as Sunderland squandered a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 with West Ham amid speculation that his reign is drawing to a close. Payet forced Costel Pantilimon into a 48th-minute save with a curling free-kick as Sunderland struggled to rediscover their first-half vigour, and Manuel Lanzini fired just wide after embarking on an adventurous 56th-minute run. The visitors received a further boost seconds later when Lens, who had already been booked for a first-half challenge on Aaron Cresswell, went through the back of Winston Reid and received a second yellow card, and they needed just three minutes to make their numerical advantage count. Pantilimon could not hold Lanzini’s shot from distance and Payet was on hand to convert the rebound and stun the locals inside the Stadium of Light. That signalled an all-out assault from the Hammers and Pantilimon had to palm away Cresswell’s 80th-minute piledriver, but his side managed to spare themselves further pain. TWEET OF THE MATCH “@dpcoverdale: Dick Advocaat confirms he has made a decision on his future and we will soon hear one way or the other #safc” – There was plenty of speculation in the media over the future of the Sunderland manager before and after the game. https://twitter.com/dpcoverdale/status/650346678088826884 PLAYER RATINGS Sunderland Costel Pantilimon: 5 DeAndre Yedlin: 6 Billy Jones: 6 John O’Shea: 6 Sebastian Coates: 6 Lee Cattermole: 7 Yann M’Vila: 8 Ola Toivonen: 7 Jeremain Lens: 5 Steven Fletcher: 7 Fabio Borini: 6 Subs Sebastian Larsson: 6 Jack Rodwell: 6 Jordi Gomez: 6 West Ham Adrian: 6 Carl Jenkinson: 6 Aaron Cresswell: 6 James Tomkins: 6 Winston Reid: 5 Manuel Lanzini: 8 Cheikhou Kouyate: 6 Mark Noble: 7 Victor Moses: 7 Dimitri Payet: 7 Diafra Sakho: 6 Subs Nikica Jelavic: 6 James Collins: 6 Mauro Zarate; 6 STAR PLAYER Yann M’Vila ran the show for Sunderland from midfield in an excellent first-half display and dug in after Jeremain Lens’ dismissal to help ensure they got at least some reward for their efforts. MOMENT OF THE MATCH Jeremain Lens’ superb chip, which looped over keeper Adrian and went in off the underside of the crossbar to put Sunderland 2-0 ahead. VIEW FROM THE BENCH Dick Advocaat and Slaven Bilic enjoyed mirror-image emotions with Sunderland dominant before the break and West Ham awful, but Lens’ premature departure handed the visitors an advantage which they almost made tell. MOAN OF THE MATCH Lens’ senseless challenge on Winston Reid after he had already been booked, which earned him a his red card. WHO’S UP NEXT West Brom v Sunderland (Barclays Premier League, Saturday October 17) Crystal Palace v West Ham (Barclays Premier League, Saturday October 17) Press Association