ALGIERS, Algeria -- The Muslim players in World Cup teams that have qualified for the second round in Brazil face a thorny question on Sunday when much of the Islamic world will start observing the holy month of Ramadan with a dawn to dusk fast. The question is trickiest for the Algerian team, which faces a formidable German side on Monday. There are also Muslims on the Nigerian and French teams and those players also will have to weigh their religious convictions against the possible effects of fasting on their performance. "We need to discuss it among ourselves," Algerian player Djamel Mesbah said. "Its clear that our religion is very important for the team, so we will talk about it and see how to go forward." Athletes in the Olympics in 2012 faced the same hurdle, with many teams allowing their players to eat during Ramadan so as not to impair their performance and make up for it at another time or make donations to charity. While fasting during daytime over the 30 days of Ramadan, including abstaining from drinking liquids, is mandatory for all able bodied Muslims and one of the five pillars of Islam, there are exemptions, including for the sick, pregnant, infirm or elderly. Those travelling or going to war are also excluded and it is under this provision that most athletes will likely delay the fast until a more suitable time. Algerian team captain Madjid Bouguerra pointed out in interviews with the Algerian press that it is a challenge Muslim players in European clubs have long faced and when he was with the Glasgow Rangers, he fasted but made sure he kept his performance up. "The hardest thing is staying hydrated, but its ok, the weathers good here," he said. "Some players will postpone their fast for another time, but depending on my physical condition, I think I will do it." Bacary Sagna, a Muslim player in the French squad, said that many of the players who do it are used to it from their time in the European leagues and able to function. "As a Muslim I know that there are certain rules that allow us to avoid it," he told The Associated Press in Ribeirao Preto, Brazil. "Personally Im not going to do it, everyones free to do as they will and I totally respect those that will do it." From a religious standpoint, however, it becomes a bit more complex. Islam lacks a central hierarchy like the Catholic church and any imam can issue an opinion that is then obeyed depending on how much respect they command. Even in Algeria, which is bathing in the euphoria of qualifying for the second round of the World Cup for the first time in its history, there have been a range of opinions from religious scholars, with some coming out quite strongly against fasting exemptions. "It is not allowed for an Algerian player to avoiding fasting just for a game -- they must fast because God is with those who fast and young people can fast and play at the same time," said Mohammed Mekerkab, the head of Algerias association of religious scholars. He also dismissed the exemption for travel claimed by most athletes since the provision was only for voyages undertaken in the search for knowledge, health reasons or fighting jihad. Algerias government-appointed High Islamic Council, however, has come down in favour of those wanting to delay their fast. Sheikh Mohammed Sherif Kaher, the head of the councils commission for religious opinions said "those playing can abstain from fasting." Dr. Hakim Chalabi, a specialist in sports and fasting who accompanied the team to Brazil, admitted in an interview that it is a delicate question because of the need for hydration and the increased risk of injuries. He noted, though, that fasting wasnt always a total hindrance to players. "We are often asked to urge players not to fast, but oddly, in some cases, there are athletes that get better results during Ramadan because they are fasting and want to," he said. "It can be a spiritual and psychological aid." DeAndre Bembry Jersey
. I wondered how NHL coaches would feel about a playoff schedule that allowed them to open a best-of-seven series on the road, which many claim to favour, yet still gave them the precious home-ice edge for a seventh game. Tracy Mcgrady Jersey
. It was just business as usual for the Thunder at home. Durant scored 32 points and the Thunder beat the Bulls 107-95 on Thursday night for their eighth straight win. http://www.hawksteamproshop.com/Cheap-D ... ks-Jersey/
. Not only that, when Julian de Guzman first stepped on the pitch for Deportivo de la Coruna he became the very first Canadian to play in Spains top tier. Ersan Ilyasova Jersey
.Y. -- AJ Allmendingers journey is almost complete. Dominique Wilkins Jersey
.com) - Pittsburgh Steelers running back LeVeon Bell, Baltimore Ravens linebacker Elvis Dumervil and New England Patriots punter Ryan Allen were selected as the AFCs top players for Week 14 of the NFL season.MINSK, Belarus -- Viktor Tikhonov scored twice and Alex Ovechkin added a goal and two assists Monday as Russia routed the United States 6-1 for its third straight victory at the ice hockey world championships. Nikolai Kolyomin opened the scoring for Russia and Alex Ovechkin beat veteran goaltender Tim Thomas with backhand on a penalty shot in the first period for his third goal of the tournament. Ovechkin set up both of Tikhonovs goals in the second, with Yevgeni Kuznetsov and Sergei Plotnikov also scoring for Russia. Justin Abdelkader pulled one back for the U.S. to make it 3-1. Russia leads Group G with nine points from three games, while the U.S. has six. Earlier, France overcame Slovakia 5-3 for another upset victory and host Belarus stunned Switzerland 4-3. France followed up its upset win over Canada in its opening game by coming from 3-1 down to beat Slovakia. Damien Fleury scored the winner on a rebound with 3:41 left in regulation to complete the comeback. Antoine Roussel added his second goal into an empty net for Frances fifth. Baptiste Amar also scored twice for France. "I feel like our team has a lot of character," Roussel said. "We creaated our chances on the power play.dddddddddddd. We were so aggressive and we didnt take so many shots." Ladislav Nagy had two goals for Slovakia, with captain Miroslav Satan also scoring. France has five points from three games in Group A, while Slovakia remained on one. "Were not ready to give it up," Satan said. "The tournament is not over yet." Mikhail Grabovski netted the decisive goal with 2:06 remaining in the final period in Belarus second victory at the worlds to thrill 15,000 home fans at the Minsk Arena. "Im really proud of my boys," Belarus coach Glen Hanlon said. "The huge support that we have from our fans was likely the difference for us." Goals from Yannick Weber, Reto Schappi and Etienne Froidevaux had given Switzerland a 3-2 lead in the third but Belarus equalized through Sergei Kostitsys second goal. It was the third straight loss for Switzerland, last years runner-up. "Its a difficult situation for us right now we have to stay positive and look forward but it wont be easy," Switzerland coach Sean Simpson said. Belarus has six points in Group B while Switzerland is on zero. Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap Jerseys China NFL Jerseys Cheap Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Wholesale Nike NFL Jerseys
' ' '