SPORTS DAY: Luc will be on Sundowns' side against Barca

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SPORTS DAY: Luc will be on Sundowns' side against Barca

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

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SOCCER
Luc believes Downs can give Barca a go
Free State Stars coach Luc Eymael believes Mamelodi Sundowns will give Barcelona a run for their considerable money when the teams meet in Wednesday night’s friendly at FNB Stadium (kickoff 6.15pm). Eymael‚ one of the highest qualified coaches in South Africa‚ believes Downs can match Barcelona blow for blow. “For Sundowns it certainly is a place to show everybody what they can do at a good level. Sundowns play nice soccer‚ a good ball-possession game‚ a bit like Barcelona. They will be up against more experienced players. It depends on which players the Barca coach uses; I’m sure he will do some rotation of players.”
Ajax to go to court
Ajax Cape Town are to file papers in the high court on Wednesday morning to have the Premier Soccer League’s promotion/relegation play-offs postponed‚ the club confirmed. Ajax have effectively been relegated by a decision from arbiter William Mokhari SC that they acted wrongfully in playing Zimbabwe striker Tendai Ndoro earlier this season. Mokhari forfeited three matches‚ wins against Platinum Stars and SuperSport United‚ and a draw against Polokwane City‚ in favour of Ajax’s opponents as he ruled the club was the third Ndoro had played for this season‚ in contravention of Fifa regulations. But Ajax will go to court to try and stop the opening play-off game taking place in Thohoyandou on Wednesday between National First Division side Black Leopards and Stars. 
Motaung vows to name a new coach soon
Kaizer Motaung has promised to announce a new head coach and make other sweeping changes at Kaizer Chiefs in the coming days. Chiefs have not won a trophy in three years and Motaung promised the club’s fans they would remedy this in the coming season. The side ended the campaign with former club captain Patrick Mabedi acting as caretaker coach following the dismissal of Steve Komphela last month. Meanwhile, Chiefs have cancelled their traditional end-of-the-season awards after another poor premiership season. It is the first time that the award ceremony will not be held and Chiefs‚ who finished the season at third place and without a trophy for the third year in a row‚ confirmed on Tuesday that the players would not be honoured this year.Russia to question reporter if he attends World Cup 
Russia’s powerful Investigative Committee said on Tuesday it will try to question a German reporter who broke the story on its alleged state-sponsored doping programme should he come for the World Cup. The announcement came moments after Moscow bowed to pressure from Berlin and granted Hajo Seppelt an entry visa for the June 14-July 15 tournament. Russia’s initial refusal to provide Seppelt with access also drew expressions of concern from Fifa and threatened to add further diplomatic strains to the World Cup. The Investigative Committee, Russia’s equivalent to the FBI, said Seppelt remained a key witness in its probe into Russian doping whistle-blower Grigory Rodchenkov.
COMMONWEALTH GAMES
Missing athletes resurface, want asylum
A number of African athletes who went missing from the Commonwealth Games last month have resurfaced seeking advice on gaining asylum in Australia, refugee advocates said on Tuesday. More than a dozen were suspected of fleeing during the event on the Gold Coast. Among them were competitors from Rwanda, Uganda and Sierra Leone, while authorities have also been seeking to verify the whereabouts of eight athletes from conflict-hit Cameroon – one-third of the country’s 24-strong team. The Refugee Advice and Casework Service in Sydney said it had received enquiries from several of them.
CRICKETButtler gets England Test recall
Jos Buttler was handed a surprise England recall on Tuesday as new national selector Ed Smith announced his squad for the first Test against Pakistan at Lord’s, which starts on May 24. Buttler returns to the squad for the first time since December 2016 after a series of impressive knocks in the Indian Premier League, including a record-equalling fifth consecutive half-century for the Rajasthan Royals on Sunday. Somerset spinner Dom Bess has been called up for the first time, after team mate Jack Leach broke his left thumb in the nets last week.
India aims for women’s IPL in three years
India aims to launch a women’s edition of the popular Indian Premier League cricket tournament in the next three years, a top official said on Tuesday. As part of the build-up, top international women players will take part in a Twenty20 exhibition game at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium this month. “We are planning to get a women’s IPL in place in two to three years,” Board of Control for Cricket in India administrator Vinod Rai said.  No firm details of the new league have yet been revealed, but pressure for a women’s IPL has been building since India reached the final of the women’s World Cup in England last year. Women cricketers from Australia, England and South Africa will play an Indian team under IPL rules in the May 22 game in Mumbai.
MOTORSPORT
‘It's the car’: Merc explains Hamilton signing delay
Mercedes have offered an explanation for the delay in signing a fresh contract with Lewis Hamilton by saying both parties wanted to focus on improving the Formula One team’s car. The four-times world champion and Mercedes have been talking about a lucrative new deal since last year, with regular assurances that it is on the point of being signed. Despite talk of having something done before the start of the season in March, five races have gone by and there is still no announcement.
AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE

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