SPORTS DAY: Benni threatens to come out of retirement
David Isaacson's roundup of sport news from around the world
McCarthy threatens comeback to show his players
An unhappy Benni McCarthy is threatening to come out of retirement at the age of 40 to show up his Cape Town City players for their lack of scoring acumen. The rookie coach was angry at a myriad missed chances in their 1-0 African Confederation Cup win over Swazi opponents Young Buffaloes on Tuesday. “If I must go for liposuction maybe and get myself to play, maybe that will do the trick because the players will be a bit embarrassed by a 40-year-old taking their place and actually doing unbelievably well because I back myself. “I could do better than what a few of them are doing.”
Serena tell of horror at giving birthSerena Williams “almost died” after giving birth to her daughter last September, the former women’s world number one tennis player wrote in a column for CNN. Williams offered more details about an experience that has since inspired her to speak out about the importance of affordable child care. “I almost died after giving birth to my daughter, Olympia,” Williams, 36, wrote in the opening line of her article.Williams was bedridden for six weeks from a series of complications, including a pulmonary embolism that led to multiple surgeries, after her daughter was delivered by emergency cesarean section. She praised the team of doctors and nurses attending to her. “If it weren’t for their professional care, I wouldn’t be here today.”
Bjoergen becomes most successful Winter Olympian
Norway’s Marit Bjoergen became the most successful athlete in Winter Olympic history on Wednesday as she took bronze behind a stunning win for the US in cross-country skiing’s women’s team sprint free. Bjoergen’s bronze with Maiken Caspersen Falla put her on 14 Olympic medals, outstripping fellow Norwegian Ole Einar Bjoerndalen, who has 13 in biathlon. Bjoergen, 37, is also the second most successful woman at either the Summer or Winter Games, trailing only Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina with 18 medals.
McFlurries for breakfast work a charm
North Korea’s women ice hockey players are not averse to enjoying a McDonald’s ice cream for breakfast, according to their South Korean teammates. “Two days ago, I saw the North Koreans in line at McDonald’s [in the Athletes Village dining hall] and I was also in line at McDonald’s,” said Randi Griffin, one of the unified Korean team players. “They were getting Oreo McFlurries for breakfast and so we all laughed about that and had McFlurries together,” chuckled Griffin, an American of Korean heritage drafted in to bolster the Korean side.
Czechs knock US out of ice hockey
Undefeated Czech Republic knocked the US out of the Olympic men’s hockey tournament Wednesday, advancing to the semifinals with a tension-packed 3-2 shootout victory. US dreams of a first gold medal since 1980 were shattered as Petr Koukal scored the only goal in a penalty shootout while Czech goaltender Pavel Francouz blanked five US sharpshooters.
Record-breaker Zagitova stuns Medvedeva
Russian teenager Alina Zagitova produced a spellbinding, world-record short programme on Wednesday to overshadow Olympic rival and compatriot Evgenia Medvedeva. The 15-year-old starlet shaded double world champion Medvedeva, 18, who just minutes earlier had broken the record she had set last week in the team event with a score of 81.61. The two skaters are set to fight it out for what could be the first gold of the Games for the Olympic Athletes from Russia.
‘Samurai’ Goggia downs Vonn
Lindsey Vonn’s bid for a second Olympic downhill gold medal came unstuck Wednesday as the US ski star finished third in the women’s blue riband event won by “crazy” close friend Sofia “Samurai” Goggia of Italy. Vonn, 33, confirmed it would be her last Olympic downhill. “It’s sad ... I love what I do, but my body just can’t take another four years,” she said.
Bobsledders, snowboarders rule Tinder
The most popular athletes on Tinder at the Olympics are male bobsledders and female snowboarders, the dating app said on Wednesday. Tinder, the dating app owned by Match Group Inc, has seen major spikes in usage at the Olympics since it caught on during the last Winter Games in Sochi in 2014.
Bolivia’s ‘Wolf’ coached by priest
Bolivian alpine skier Simon Breitfuss Kammerlander — born and raised in Austria and known to his fans as “Lobo“, or “Wolf” in Spanish — has turned to skiing pastor Joerg Walcher for some much-needed help in Pyeongchang. The unlikely combination came about after his father and coach Rainer fell off a roof. “He crashed 3m to the ground and broke five ribs — it meant he couldn’t come,” said Breitfuss Kammerlander, whose best result at these Games was 43rd of 75 finishers in the giant slalom. “He knew life was going to be tough for me out here on my own without somebody to help.” But then Father Joerg answered his prayers.
Russell stays in unchanged Scotland XV
Scotland flyhalf Finn Russell kept his place as coach Gregor Townsend named an unchanged starting side on Wednesday for this weekend’s Six Nations international against England at Murrayfield. Russell was taken off by Townsend in the 65th minute of Scotland’s 32-26 win at home to France last time out, with experienced scrumhalf Greig Laidlaw moving across to flyhalf.
Crash forces Cavendish out
British sprint king Mark Cavendish made an early exit from the Abu Dhabi Tour on Wednesday after crashing before the official start of the first stage. “Mark Cavendish went down in the neutral zone, falling on the same shoulder he broke last year. He got up and chased back to the peloton but had to abandon soon after. More info to come after medical check,” tweeted Team Dimension Data.