SPORTS DAY: Vermeulen likes the ‘new vibe’ in Bok camp
Your roundup of the sporting news of the day
Duane says there’s a new vibe in Bok camp
His most recent exploits in the Springbok jersey served to momentarily plug the holes in erstwhile coach Allister Coetzee’s sinking career at the helm of the national team. Now Duane Vermeulen admits he has walked into an environment without the debilitating uncertainty that seemed to enshroud the Springboks’ European tour that yielded two wins and as many defeats at the end of last season. Last November Vermeulen joined the Bok squad in Paris following their humiliating defeat to Ireland and his impact was immediate as they beat France and Italy on consecutive weekends. “After losing to Ireland‚ when I walked in‚ there you could have felt that there was something different. The guys were down in their body language. You (could) see there was something missing‚” he said. “This year we have a new group. There is a new vibe with a young bunch of guys. Everyone is keen to start the season fresh.”
Impey moves into Dauphine lead
South African Daryl Impey moved into the overall lead of the Criterium du Dauphine after finishing third in the 181km third stage from Montbrison to Belleville en Beaujolais. Impey was just behind Pascal Ackermann and Edvald Boasson Hagen, but it was enough to give him the lead of the race that ends on Sunday.
Track and field body goes for Sascoc kill
Athletics SA (ASA) is going for the jugular of the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc)‚ declaring a dispute over the legality of the umbrella body’s board. If ASA is successful in having the board deemed illegal‚ it could cause a potential crisis for Sascoc‚ especially if all decisions taken since its inception 19-odd months ago are scrapped as well. That could pave the way for three fired officials to return‚ including CEO Tubby Reddy and chief financial officer Vinesh Maharaj.
End gold medal targets, says Australian Thorpe
Swimmer Ian Thorpe, Australia’s most decorated Olympian, has called on national bodies to stop setting gold medal targets as it puts too much pressure on athletes. Speaking at an Australian Institute of Sport summit on “Athlete Wellbeing” on Tuesday, the fives-times Olympic gold-medallist said the focus should be on athletes representing the country well. “I don’t think it’s beneficial when sporting organisations are talking about how many gold medals we’ll win at a competition and that will be the highest number we’ve ever won.”
Smith ‘cried for four days’ after ball-tampering bustFormer Australia captain Steve Smith says he cried for four days as he tried to cope with the fallout from the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in March. “To be honest, I probably spent four days in tears,” said Smith. “I was really struggling mentally and I was really lucky that I had some close friends and family members that I could speak to at all hours of the day.”
Chippa boss laughing all the way to the bankChippa United are not just going to boast about having a player at the Fifa 2018 World Cup in Russia‚ but they will also benefit financially. Chilli Boys goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi has made the cut for Nigeria’s 23-man squad‚ which will boost the club’s coffers with a minimum R2.5-million from world football’s governing body‚ subject to taxes and other deductions. Chippa boss Siviwe Mpengesi told the Sowetan recently that the club could receive R4-million‚ but that’s dependent on how far the Super Eagles progress in the tournament.
Investor is oldest goal-scorer at nearly 45
A senior club official buried a penalty just weeks short of his 45th birthday to become the oldest goal-scorer in Chinese professional football history, media reports said. Zhuang Yi, an investor in third-tier Shenyang Urban, is a former player who came out of retirement last month — and on Sunday proved he still has that goal-scoring knack.
Fifa files criminal complaint against ticket seller
Soccer’s ruling body Fifa has filed a criminal complaint against online ticket reseller Viagogo, saying it wanted to protect fans and prevent unauthorised ticket resales at the World Cup in Russia starting next week. Fifa said its own website was the only legitimate place to buy World Cup tickets. “Tickets purchased via unauthorised distribution channels, including all tickets purchased through viagogo AG, will be canceled once identified.”
Belgian police detain 13 in match-fixing probe
Belgian police on Tuesday held 13 people in an investigation into match-fixing in tennis, prosecutors said, barely a month after a major independent report warned of a “tsunami” of corruption in the lower levels of the sport. Officers swooped on 21 addresses in Belgium while simultaneous raids were launched on properties in the US, Germany, France, Bulgaria, Slovakia and the Netherlands as part of an international probe into an Armenian-Belgian criminal network suspected of bribing players to throw games on the low-level Futures and Challenger circuits, away from the gaze of television coverage.
Next stop San Francisco as ‘longest swim’ starts
Ben Lecomte dived into the Pacific Ocean Tuesday, kicking off an epic quest to swim 9,000km from Tokyo to San Francisco through shark-infested waters choking with plastic waste. Part adventurer, part environmentalist, Lecomte hopes to raise awareness of plastic contamination and ocean pollution and his support team will conduct a raft of experiments on the trip, expected to take between six to eight months. He will be accompanied throughout by the 20-metre (67-foot) support boat Discoverer, where he will eat, rest and sleep before being dropped every morning where he stopped the previous evening. Lecomte aims to swim around eight hours a day and will burn off more than 8,000 calories daily in the process.
AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE