first_imgThe Georgia Environmental Protection Division is rethinking its interim groundwatermanagement plan for southeast Georgia.But that doesn’t mean the farmers there — or elsewhere in Georgia — can take waterpermits lightly.”The same permit system we’ve had since 1988 is still in effect,” said Tony Tyson, anirrigation specialist with the University of Georgia Extension Service.Who needs a permit? Anyone who can withdraw 3 million gallons in a month from a deepwell, pond, lake or stream, Tyson said.”Most farmers who irrigate will use more water than that,” he said.”That’s anyone who can pump 70 gallons a minute.”EPD’s interim plan for southeast Georgia was to have gone into effect July 1. The planaddressed a number of problems with the Floridan aquifer. The most notable of those aresaltwater intrusion and decreased water pressure along the coast.The plan affected 24 counties in three groups. In the northern and southern groups, itwould simply have kept a close check on water withdrawals through Dec. 31, 1998.In the central 10 counties, though, the plan used tougher measures. It requiredindustries and public water systems to reduce water usage by 10 percent per day.For agricultural uses, the plan would not have allowed any new permits after July 1.But a series of public hearings last spring drew a flood of concerns from all sides.Debate was often tense and sometimes heated. So EPD went back to the drawing board.”It’s just a matter of time, though,” Tyson said. “EPD will come backwith another strategy, or some modification of the old plan. The needs are real and won’tjust go away. We don’t know what the new strategy will be or when it will be ready.There’s no set deadline at this point, but it will be soon.”In the meantime, farmers who need to add an irrigation system may still get a permit,he said, even in southeast Georgia.In general, they need a permit if they want to apply, in any month, 1 inch of waterover 110 acres, 2 inches on 55 acres, 3 inches on 37 acres or 4 inches on 28 acres.To get a permit, farmers must act before they drill a well or install a pump.”The first thing they need to do,” Tyson said, “is apply for a letter ofconcurrence.” That means filling out a one-page application, giving information suchas the intended well size and pump capacity.”That goes to EPD in Atlanta,” Tyson said. If the agency approves, it willsend a letter to the farmer saying the withdrawal system will be approved. The farmer thenhas two years to install the system and then get the permit.”Some people forget that after they put the system in, they still have to applyfor the permit,” he said. “It will be approved. It’s a formality. But it’s onethat has to be done.”People with old irrigation systems that need a permit but don’t have one may still beable to get one. They need to contact the county extension agent.County Extension Service offices have applications for letters of concurrence and forpermits. And extension agents can help explain the requirements of the permit law.People who need permits in southeast Georgia should apply without delay, Tyson said.The prospects for getting applications approved won’t likely get any better than they arenow.”This is an indication of things to come in other parts of the state, too,”he said. “We may see similar strategies in southwest Georgia as a result of thestrain on groundwater resources there.”last_img read more

first_imgNew Mexico regulators approve utility’s replacement power plans for closing San Juan coal plant FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission on Dec. 2 unanimously approved agreements between Public Service Co. of New Mexico and renewable energy developers for solar power paired with battery storage projects, as well as amendments to existing solar-plus-storage agreements.During a virtual meeting, the five commissioners approved, without changes, a recommended decision of two hearing examiners to grant the utility’s requests for approval of the 200-MW San Juan Solar 1 Project purchased power agreement, or PPA, and the related 100-MW San Juan Solar 1 Storage Project energy storage agreement, or ESA. The San Juan solar and storage projects are components of the San Juan Solar Project (Four Corners Solar) that Photosol US is developing in San Juan County, N.M., near the retiring coal-fired San Juan Generating Station, the recommended decision said.The commissioners also approved the utility’s 100-MW Rockmont Solar Project PPA and related 30-MW Rockmont Storage Project ESA. The Rockmont projects will be sited on private land in San Juan County, about 3.5 miles southeast of the San Juan coal plant near Farmington, N.M., according to the recommended decision, which also refers to the projects as the 8me LLC projects, named after developer subsidiaries of X-ELIO Energy SL. Additionally, the utility secured approval to amend its existing Arroyo Solar Plus Storage Project PPA to update pricing and terms as well as its related existing ESA to update contract terms and increase the total battery storage capacity from 40 MW to a total of 150 MW, according to the recommended decision.During the meeting, Hearing Examiner Anthony Medeiros told the commissioners the recommended decision is “a spinoff or continuation” of a final decision the commissioners issued on July 29 when they approved resources to replace the San Juan coal-fired plant.In that earlier decision, the commission approved solar generation and battery storage agreements to replace nearly 500 MW of generating capacity the utility will lose when units 1 and 4 of the San Juan coal plant close in 2022. In that decision, the commissioners approved the PPA for the output of the 300-MW Arroyo Solar Plus Storage Project that Clenera LLC is developing. Also approved in that earlier decision was a 50-MW PPA for output of the Jicarilla I Solar Plus Storage Project and an ESA for an associated 20-MW storage facility. The Jicarilla project is being developed by Hecate Energy.Altogether, the two sets of approvals, which are aimed at allowing the utility to replace output from the San Juan station that soon will be retired in favor of zero-carbon resources, will add approximately 650 MW of solar and 300 MW of battery storage to the PNM Resources Inc. subsidiary utility’s energy resources portfolio.[Jeff Stanfield]More ($): New Mexico approves more solar-plus-storage agreements for PNM utilitylast_img read more

first_imgOct 1, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – Indonesia’s health ministry announced today that a 21-year-old man who lived near Jakarta died of H5N1 avian influenza, according to media reports.Joko Suyanto, an official from Indonesia’s bird flu center, said the man, who lived in West Jakarta, died on Oct 28, Deutsche Presse-Agentur reported today. If the man’s case is confirmed by the World Health Organization (WHO), he will become Indonesia’s 107th case-patient and its 86th death.The man got sick on Sep 18 and was admitted to the hospital on Sep 25, Suharda Ningrum, an official at the bird flu center, said in a report today from Xinhua News, China’s state news agency.Health officials are conducting an investigation in the area where the man lived to determine if he had a history of contact with birds, Xinhua reported.In January, government officials in Indonesia banned backyard poultry in the country’s capital after a string of five H5N1 deaths among residents of Jakarta and its suburbs, according to a previous CIDRAP News report.Indonesia has the world’s highest number of H5N1 cases and deaths. The WHO’s current global H5N1 count is 328 cases with 200 deaths.See also:Jan 19 CIDRAP News story “Asian countries struggle to contain avian flu”last_img read more

first_imgRidwan said the official government count showed only 225 cases in West Java as of Friday, but rapid testing conducted by his administration had uncovered 677 new cases. After the rapid testing, which has a relatively high error rate, the governor said he would have to conduct secondary and more accurate swab tests. The rapid tests, he said, were needed to bypass the slow testing process at the Health Ministry’s National Institute of Health Research and Development (Balitbangkes), which he said could only test about 200 samples a day.  West Java has distributed 50,000 rapid test kits and has found that Sukabumi is a new outbreak epicenter in the province. The biggest cluster was found at the National Police’s Setukpa Officer Establishment School, where 300 of the 1,550 students tested were found positive for the virus.     The governors of Jakarta and West Java, the two regions of the country hit hardest by the coronavirus outbreak, have suggested that the numbers of people infected and killed by the disease in the country are significantly higher than the central government’s official count. They have said the Health Ministry has not been swift enough in testing potential COVID-19 patients.According to The Jakarta Post’s calculations using data provided by the ministry’s daily outbreak briefings, the central government has conducted a daily average of 240 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests since March 2. As of Friday, the ministry had confirmed 1,986 cases with 181 deaths and had conducted about 7,986 PCR tests in total.  “Pardon me, Mr. Vice President, the cases that we have today are exponentially higher […] Our testing speed is not as we expected it to be so only a little data has come in,” West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil said during a virtual call with Vice President Ma’ruf Amin on Friday.“The more we test, the more we know where the virus is circulating.”  The second biggest cluster was found at the Lembang Bethel Church of Indonesia (GBI) where 226 congregants tested positive for the coronavirus, two of whom, the pastor and his wife, have reportedly died of the disease. “Out of the 637 Bethel Church attendees, 226 tested positive, that’s a 35 percent rate,” Ridwan said.Ridwan said the administration had conducted door-to-door testing in addition to tests in community health centers and hospitals. The administration opened a drive-through testing station in the Gelora Bandung Lautan Api Stadium in Bandung. “South Korea, with a population of 51 million, has conducted 300,000 tests, 0.6 percent of its population. Indonesia [with a population of more than 264 million] needs at least 2 million tests,” Ridwan told the Vice President. “We’re still quite far from that number.” Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan has also cast doubt on the central government’s data by highlighting the number of deaths, from any cause, recorded in the capital in March. Nearly 4,400 burials occurred in March, 40 percent higher than any month since at least January 2018, according to a Reuters review of statistics from the city’s Department of Parks and Cemeteries. The second-highest total during the period was in March 2019, when nearly 3,100 people were buried.“It is extremely disturbing,” Baswedan told Reuters on Friday, referring to the funeral statistics. “I’m struggling to find a reason other than unreported COVID-19 deaths.”The governor told Ma’ruf during a video call on Thursday that more than 400 Jakartans had been buried according to COVID-19 protocol.Between March 6 and Wednesday, 401 bodies were buried using the protocol. They were sprayed with disinfectant, covered in plastic and put inside coffins, according to Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan. Anies said the number of COVID-19-related funerals began to pick up on March 12, nearly a week after the first such funeral.As of Friday, Jakarta had recorded 958 cases of COVID-19 and 96 deaths. The governor asked the central government to help improve the city’s testing capacity. “A lot of cases were not immediately detected and handled. The consequences are fatal. We have been late to detect the cases that may have transmitted the disease to other people,” he said.Responding to the governors, Ma’ruf said that he supported the governors’ call for more extensive testing. It remains to be seen whether the government will be able to scale up testing.The government has distributed some 400,000 rapid testing kits to the regions, focusing on the hardest-hit areas such as Greater Jakarta. However, even those who have tested positive for the disease still need to take the more reliable but limited PCR tests, given the high possibility of false positives among rapid test results. Without mass, rapid PCR testing, it is believed that the country’s confirmed cases will continue to be underreported. “The gold standard is still PCR testing […] while the confidence level in rapid antibody testing is the lowest among all other forms of tests,” said Herawati Supolo Sudoyo, deputy director of fundamental research at the Eijkman Institute of Molecular Biology, on Thursday.Topics :last_img read more

first_imgIndonesia is striving to tackle the COVID-19 outbreak with domestically produced innovations, but researchers say the government may face roadblocks in the mass production of such products because of the absence of pro-innovation policies.The government’s research consortium on Wednesday launched nine products, including ventilators, a type of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test and rapid antibody testing kits, in an effort to overcome the shortage of critical medical equipment in Indonesia’s fight against COVID-19.The nine inventions were the result of a consortium formed on March 26 by the Research and Technology Ministry and the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) to develop innovations to fight the outbreak. The program involves universities, government research agencies and local industries – both private and state-owned – including defense firms such as state-owned arms manufacturer PT Pindad. Indonesian Young Academy of Science (ALMI) secretary general Berry Juliandi said that domestically produced products such as PCR test kits and ventilators relied on imported materials for production. Some important chemicals were patented, so Indonesia would need to buy the patents before continuing with production.”Essentially, we welcome this initiative because we are happy that we are involved in it. But we still struggle to be independent in producing raw materials to make such products,” said Berry.He recommended that the authorities relax import requirements and taxes to prevent a shortage of raw materials for mass production.Read also: Researchers face uphill battle to help with COVID-19 fightBut difficulties in procuring raw materials had existed before COVID-19. In 2018, the Health Ministry noted that about 90 percent of the country’s pharmaceutical production used imported materials.Indonesia Science Academy (AIPI) head Satryo Soemantri Brodjonegoro said producers could also face difficulties when dealing with bureaucracy as no national standards existed to regulate the new products.He advised the Industry Ministry and the National Standardization Agency (BSN) to avoid using foreign standards as they would halt the mass production process because the products that he had seen so far had not met the international benchmark. Instead, he said, a national consensus on a feasible standard was needed to allow for swift production without sacrificing product safety.”We must see the urgency. We have to start first and perfect the innovations later,” Satryo said.The Health Ministry’s health testing center has removed its secondary requirements for innovations, such as noise levels for ventilators, after receiving the AIPI’s recommendations, Satryo said.Read also: Indonesian defense industry feels COVID-19 pinchResearch and Technology Minister and BRIN head Bambang Brodjonegoro told The Jakarta Post that the recently launched products would make extensive use of local components (TKDN) and would be able to replace their imported counterparts.The ministry said it would also push its research and development department to find substitutes for imported materials, such as reagents for PCR tests. It would also focus on using herbal ingredients rather than chemical ones for medicines to make “modern Indonesian medicines”.Bambang said that some of the nine products had already entered production and would be ready by next month for national use.Indonesia will start producing 100 to 300 ventilators each week starting next week, depending on production capacity. Pindad, hospital equipment maker PT Poly Jaya Medikal, electronics manufacturer PT LEN and automotive holding company Dharma Group were among those involved in the development of the four different types of ventilators.Bambang estimated that the country would have a sufficient supply by next month and would be able to distribute the ventilators to hospitals throughout Indonesia.Read also: Jokowi wants BRIN to take center stage in research effortsAt least 10,000 domestically produced rapid testing kits are currently undergoing validity tests at several hospitals in Central Java. Bambang said that authorities planned to produce 40,000 to 50,000 rapid testing kits and PCR testing kits each by next month.He said these innovations would offer affordable alternatives to imported ventilators and rapid testing kits, which are now expensive because of soaring global demand.”[The expense of importing products] is what motivates researchers and innovators in the country to try to produce them on their own,” Bambang said.Topics : President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo said that the world was competing to address the COVID-19 epidemic and that Indonesia “must answer it with concrete innovations and concrete work”.”These products should not remain in the laboratory only or be limited to prototypes; mass production must follow to fulfill domestic needs and to possibly export [the products] to other countries,” he said.Domestically produced COVID-19 innovations (JP/Made Anthony Iswara)Researchers, who have long criticized the government for overlooking how important research is for the country’s development, are praising the efforts to include research in the ongoing COVID-19 struggle. But they say the government still needs to overcome obstacles, mainly Indonesia’s dependence on imported raw materials and bureaucracy, to make innovations quickly and readily available on a large scale.last_img read more

first_imgLayla Cutter, 20, reckons she has a better chance of winning a home than ever being able to afford to buy one. Picture: Annette DewMILLENNIALS priced out of the housing market reckon they have a better chance of winning a home than ever being able to afford to buy one.The number of 25 to 34-year-olds buying tickets in home lotteries has doubled in the past two years as millennials choose to savour their smashed avo as the housing market moves further out of reach.Brisbane’s Layla Cutter has decided to pay $30 a month to subscribe to a national prize home draw in the hope of winning a foot on the property ladder.“It’s kind of cool to think not only am I contributing to a great cause, but I’m also in the draw to win these great houses which I’d never be able to afford,” she said.“I’d love to be able to own my home and that’s what I would spend if I went out to dinner with my friends.”The 20-year-old call centre worker said she was trying to save money for a home deposit, but between rent and living expenses, there was little spare.RSL Art Union general manager Tracey Bishop said the younger demographic had accounted for only 10 per cent of new customers in the prize draw two years ago, but that number had now doubled.“I think the realisation that owning your own home is becoming more difficult is definitely playing a role,” she said.Ms Bishop said the fact the prize was usually more than one property also appealed to a younger demographic.“They can sell one, still have money in the bank and have somewhere to live,” she said.Financial commentator Noel Whittaker said many millennials would see buying a $5 ticket to be in the running to win a $3.5 million property as a no-brainer.“Young winners trying to get a property market foothold could become instant landlords and be free to live wherever their work takes them, safe in the knowledge they have an incredible asset,” he said.Mr Whittaker said offering a tangible investment such as property as a prize instead of cash was also a sensible option in the current market.“The number one value in real estate is its permanence,” he said.“Shares and other forms of financial investment can be fickle, but people love their bricks and mortar and it can be relatively low risk provided you take the long-term view.”More from newsMould, age, not enough to stop 17 bidders fighting for this home4 hours agoBuyers ‘crazy’ not to take govt freebies, says 28-yr-old investor4 hours agoNerida Conisbee, chief economist with, said a home had become the ultimate prize given the housing affordability issue.“Years ago the big prizes were cars, but cars are affordable now while houses aren’t,” she said.“The market’s hard to get into. Anyone with a bit of money can buy a car but you can’t very easily get a house in many of these locations.“For many people looking at the market at the moment and the level of debt they need to take on to buy a property, I can see how it would be very tempting.”Chad Kinlyside, 33, said he would have struggled to afford a home for his young family if his parents hadn’t won a block of townhouses on the Gold Coast two years ago and given one to him and his brother.He and his friends now regularly buy tickets in the draw and other competitions in the hope of winning property.“You think about how long it takes you to pay off a house. Dad was in (the draw) for 30 years and he won four of them,” Mr Kinlyside said.“A lot of people say it’s all a bit of yahoo, that it’ll never happen, but it does happen.”First prize in the latest RSL Art Union draw is a townhouse complex featuring four three-bedroom townhouses worth $3.4 million with water views in Paradise Point.All profits raised go towards helping veterans and their families.last_img read more

first_imgREAL ESTATE: 10 Twigg St, IndooroopillyTHE luxury home market is the strongest it’s been in a decade, according to one agent, with one home selling for more than double the suburb median. REAL ESTATE: 10 Twigg St, IndooroopillyThe next highest sale price for the street was for 28 Twigg St at $1.81 million.Mr Adcock said the home sold to a family from Townsville.“They loved that it was relatively new (and) there are spectacular views of the river and Walter Taylor Bridge,” he said.He also said there was limited stock at present, which was driving up results.“People are getting spectacular prices at the moment and people thinking about coming to market will sell quickly and get a good price,” he said.Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 3:17Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -3:17 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 Rate1xFullscreenMichelle Hele’s May market wrap03:17 REAL ESTATE: 10 Twigg St, IndooroopillyAdcock Prestige principal Jason Adcock said 10 Twigg St at Indooroopilly sold for $2.35 million and the sale was a good reflection of the market.“It shows the high-end market in Brisbane is the best it’s been in a decade,” Mr Adcock said.More from newsDigital inspection tool proves a property boon for REA website3 Apr 2020The Camira homestead where kids roamed free28 May 2019According to CoreLogic data the median house price for Indooroopilly is $894,000.There were three registered bidders, however, the home sold after auction and reached a record price for the street.last_img read more

first_imgTotal has started up production from the Culzean gas condensate field located 230 kilometers off the coast of Aberdeen, in the UK. With a plateau production of 100,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, Culzean will account for around 5% of the UK’s gas consumption, bringing to 18% the proportion of the country’s gas demand supplied by Total.“The Culzean project is delivered ahead of schedule and more than 10% below the initial budget, which represents Capex savings of more than 500 million dollars. This has been achieved thanks to the excellent performance of the project teams in charge of the construction and drilling operations,” stated Arnaud Breuillac, president exploration & production at Total.“Culzean is a good example of our efforts to upgrade our portfolio in the North Sea over the last years, notably by bringing Total and Maersk Oil together. The Culzean field is located in the Central Graben area, close to the Elgin-Franklin fields, also operated by Total, thus generating synergies.”Discovered in 2008 by Maersk Oil, the Culzean field contains resources estimated between 250 and 300 million barrels of oil equivalent. The project includes the drilling of six wells, the construction of three bridge-linked platforms and of a Floating Storage and Offloading (FSO) unit. Gas from Culzean is exported via the CATS pipeline and the UK National Grid whilst condensate is stored in the FSO for offloading by shuttle tanker.New digital technologies applied on the project, such as the latest smart rooms, will deliver higher efficiency during operations and create a safer working environment.Total operates Culzean with a 49.99% participating interest, alongside BP (32%) and JX Nippon (18.01%).last_img read more

first_img Tweet Share Share 31 Views   no discussions EducationLocalNewsTertiary DSC Students Impressive Results by: – September 26, 2011center_img Share Sharing is caring! DSC Students Achieve Impressive Results at the June 2011 City and Guilds International Examinations in Electrical Installation and Motor vehicle Systems.Dominica State College (DSC) students from the Faculty of Applied Arts and Technology (FAAT) performed outstandingly in the June 2011, City and Guilds International Examinations in Electrical Installation and Motor Vehicle Systems. All seven students who sat the IVQ Level 2 Technician Certificate in Motor Vehicle Systems passed both Engine System 1 and Chassis Systems 1. Eight of the nine students who sat the IVQ Level 2 Diploma in Electrical Installation passed with flying colours. The following seven, of the eight students who passed the Electrical Installation assessment obtained a distinction: Gilbert George, Vince Morgan, Ollison Vidal, Dirk Frederick, Augustus Juliana, Kian Roberts and Lynn Asa Williams. Jeannette Ettinoffe, the other student, received a merit. Elton Thomas, from the Motor Vehicle Systems group, was the only one with a distinction. Samuel Augustus Moise, Cameron Stoute, and kyle Toussaint each obtained two credits. Dwight O,brien and Elroy Andrew each obtained one credit. These results endorse the quality of instruction that students of the FAAT receive in the areas identified above and strengthen DSC’s resolve to be the premier tertiary education and training institution in Dominica, recognised for its high quality programmes, the competence of its faculty, and its responsiveness to the educational and training needs of the nation and region.Dean of the FAAT, Mr. Rawle Leslie, is elated with this year’s results noting that it demonstrates continuous improvement of the FAAT lecturers in instructional competence. He believes that the results clearly demonstrate what happens when students are highly motivated, focussed and determined to excel in an environment supported by lecturers who are fully committed to students’ success.DSC has planned a press conference for Tuesday, 4th October, 2011, at the Bath Estate Campus, at 10:30am, to highlight the details of students’ achievement, provide an opportunity for the top students to comment on their success and to hear the views of senior management on the results.The media is invited to attend this press conference and make use of the opportunity to interview students, top officials and relevant lecturers of the DSC in relation to this impressive performance by the students.Press ReleaseDominica State Collegelast_img read more

first_img Winning the Amateur championship at Royal Portrush last year means Neil also has an invite to the US Open in June and the 19-year-old Scot admits he may turn professional before September’s Walker Cup. “He (McIlroy) said to me there’s no rush,” Neil added. “He said my game is good enough to come out here and do well so there’s no rush and just wait until I feel comfortable.” Asked what else he and McIlroy talked about, Neil added: ” Well I’m 19 and he’s only a few years older so we were talking about girls and stuff like that. “Obviously his life’s a bit quiet, strangely a lot quieter than mine, but it was just little things we talked about like football teams. Just little things to let the time pass.” ” It was a bit like coming here for the first time, it exceeded all my expectations,” Neil said. “He’s a really nice guy and made me feel really comfortable. “I think it just shows how strong he is mentally. His rise has been very quick so after what he has gone through and to see how calm he is about everything shows how strong he is mentally. It bodes well for the rest of the week. His game is great, he’s had a few weeks off and from what he’s been telling me he’s been working on his game hard. “His game is looking very strong and I’d be surprised if we didn’t see him up there challenging on Sunday. “He’s only six years older than me but if I was to even get to where he’s at in 15 years I’d be happy. The way he’s dealt with it at such a young age is what’s very impressive. He seems as if he has nothing to worry about. “You can’t tell he’s under pressure. Whether he hides it or whether he just deals with it, you just would never be able to tell. You’d think he was in my situation, just here to soak up all the experience – you certainly wouldn’t think he’s the major contender this week by the way he deals with it and takes it in his stride.” The practice round was arranged when the pair met at Augusta a few weeks ago and Neil revealed he again showed McIlroy the best way to play the par-five second hole. ” I holed out from about 90 yards and he couldn’t stop laughing because the day we met here I did the exact same thing and he was on the third tee,” Neil added. “He said ‘Just don’t bother going for the green, just lay up all the time’. “That was obviously a nice thing to do and I got a nice cheer from the crowd. Rory always gets a crowd and the fact that I got to taste that was great. I doubt I’ll play in front of a crowd like that during the rest of the week. It’s going to be easier now.” Press Association With his main pre-tournament press conference scheduled for Tuesday afternoon – immediately after Tiger Woods – McIlroy politely declined to talk to waiting reporters after playing a full practice round with amateur champion Bradley Neil at Augusta National. However, Neil was happy to discuss his experience and McIlroy’s frame of mind as he attempts to win a first green jacket and become only the sixth player to complete a career grand slam. World number one Rory McIlroy let his playing partner do the talking on Monday, but the result could hardly have been more impressive.last_img read more