Thursday, December 29
At midnight on December 29th Samoa will jump forward in time a full 24 hours to December 31st meaning, that for the Pacific islanders, December 30th 2011 will never happen. As a result, more than 500 of the nation's 186,000 citizens will have no birthday this year, unless they choose to celebrate the 30th December in a different country.
The decision to move the International Dateline was taken because much of Samoa's trade is with New Zealand and Australia. In 1892, Samoans experienced two 'July fourths' as the International Dateline was moved to allow the country to improve trade with the United States.
Friday, December 23
Thank you and Merry Christmas to all of you who followed and/or supported More Than a Game during 2011. Without your interest this project would not exist.
Please remember those less fortunate than us, particularly at this time of the year. If you can, please check out the page on this website 'Projects we like', where you can read about grassroots projects and charities that are trying to improve the lives of others.
We hope you continue to follow More Than a Game during 2012. Happy Christmas to you all!
Friday, December 23
Dozens have been injured in Christchurch after a series of new Chritsmas earthquakes rattled the city. The strongest quakes were measured at 5.8 and 5.9. The quakes come ten months after a 6.3 magnitude quake killed more than 180 people in the New Zealand city.
Friday, December 16
As we suggested on this blog back in October, Jonny Wilkinson has played his final match for the England rugby team.
Wilkinson announced his retirement from international rugby on December 14, bringing a long and successful career as one of his nation's most respected rugby players to a close.
'Jonny' famously secured England the 2003 Rugby World Cup with his last gasp drop-kick against Australia. Wilkinson played a total of 91 caps for England and had it not been for a series of injuries would have played dozens more internationals. He scored a total of 1,179 points during his England career before playing his last match in the 2011 Quarter Final between England and France.
Friday, December 16
Samoa is to join the WTO after first applying in 1998. New membership does, however, come at a price, with the country forced to open its markets to the import of many low grade products, particularly high-fat turkey products from the US, which have been proven to lead to higher rates of obesity and heart disease.
As ever, what looks like a good deal on paper for a small nation is inevitably a very bad deal for many of that nation's citizens.
It is in the interests of every Samoan that the country's WTO delegation seeks the best deal possible for its people before the country joins the WTO.
We are in the process of 'optimizing' the More Than a Game website. This basically means adding new content, photos, videos, tags, links and a number of other improvements that all help drive traffic to the site. Daily traffic numbers are already averaging over 250, with a new high of over 500 unique users on December 5.
We hope you enjoy the ongoing improvements to this website.
Tuesday, December 6
More Than a Game will launch its UEFA Euro 2012 blog in January.
The blog will feature all the latest news and gossip in the lead up to next summer's European Championships in Ukraine and Poland.
We will of course also be bringing you daily blogs, news, photos and videos from the tournament itself when it begins in June.
December 4, 2011
The team manager of the Samoan rugby team, Mathew Vaea, has been fined 100 pigs by his community after letting down the country's national team at the 2011 rugby world cup finals in New Zealand.
Community elders in Leauva decided that a substantial punishment was needed for Vaea, who was described by Samoan team players as acting like the world cup 'was a holiday'.
Many Samoans believe that had the team been professionally managed, there was every chance that they would have progressed at least as far as the quarter finals.