SPORTS DAY: Engines start revving for Chiefs, Pirates

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SPORTS DAY: Engines start revving for Chiefs, Pirates

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

Sunday Times sports editor

SOCCER
Chiefs downplay Ntshangase’s absence
There was no reason to talk of for why Siphelele Ntshangase played no role for Kaizer Chiefs in their preseason Shell Helix Ultra Cup match against Mamelodi Sundowns on Saturday‚ says Amakhosi communications manager Vina Maphosa. Ntshangase‚ a headline signing for Chiefs in January from Baroka FC who subsequently struggled to nail down a starting place in ex-coach Steve Komphela’s starting lineup last season‚ did not even appear on Amakhosi’s team sheet. “Unfortunately we don’t explain why players are not playing in the off-season‚” Maphosa said.
Orlando Pirates’ co-chefs cooking up a storm
Orlando Pirates’ “chefs”‚ coaches Milutin Sredojevic and Rhulani Mokwena‚ have been cooking up a delicious meal of football to serve up to their supporters when their season kicks off against Highlands Park on August 4‚ Sredojevic has said. With the kickoff now just 10 days away‚ Pirates have managed perhaps the most secretive off-season of South Africa’s big three. Last season’s runners-up played a string of friendlies in Zambia. Sredojevic said the last 10 days of Bucs’ off-season are about polishing. “We are happy that we now need to do the last polishing issues in man-management‚ partnerships‚ triangulation‚ in departments throughout the team. Everything has gone well.”
SABC gives green light to Robert Marawa’s return
Robert Marawa returns to the radio airwaves on August 1 and he is expected to be accompanied by his trusted producer Beverly Maphangwa and the popular Room Dividers. The SABC on Wednesday confirmed Marawa’s appointment as host of an extended simulcast show that is to air on both Metro FM and Radio 2000. The chairman’s chair segment is also expected to return and insiders told TimesLIVE that Premier Soccer League chairman Irvin Khoza will be the first in the hot seat next Thursday.
TENNIS
SA wheelchair tennis star qualifies for US Open 
South African wheelchair tennis star Kgothatso Montjane has qualified for the US Open next month but does not know how she is going to get to Flushing Meadows in New York. Broke Wheelchair Tennis SA officials are scrambling to raise funds for her trip and coach since they lost the support of Airports Company SA 18 months ago. If she does not find a sponsor she may have to miss the tournament. Montjane‚  has already played in the Australian Open‚ French Open and Wimbledon this year.Serena is victim of ‘discrimination’ over drug tests
Serena Williams has accused anti-doping authorities of “discrimination” because of the frequency with which she has been selected for random drug tests. The 23-time Grand Slam winner had previously described her treatment by the US Anti-Doping Agency as shocking and raised questions about the number of times she had been tested this year. Williams expressed her frustration again on Tuesday after a visit from doping officials. “.. .and it’s that time of the day to get ‘randomly’ drug tested and only test Serena,” the 36-year-old wrote on Twitter. “Out of all the players it’s been proven I’m the one getting tested the most. Discrimination? I think so. At least I’ll be keeping the sport clean.”
Springbok return for Sharks’ MvovoSharks wing/fullback Lwazi Mvovo has been called out of the international wilderness and added to the Springbok training squad after some good Super Rugby performances in 2018. Mvovo‚ 32‚ is one of eight Sharks players added to a training squad that was named last week by coach Rassie Erasmus. Mvovo last played for the Boks against Ireland at Ellis Park in June 2016 where he endured a torrid afternoon as the tourists rained high kicks on him‚ which he struggled to handle.
Whiteley excited about Waratahs clash
Lions captain Warren Whiteley can’t wait for the tactical battle to unfold when his team takes on the Waratahs in their Super Rugby semifinal at Ellis Park on Saturday. “I’m quite excited to play this weekend‚” he said. “Tactically it is going to be quite interesting to see what they do in those first 20 minutes.” Their experience of playoff matches over the last three years has taught the Lions “not to change‚” said Whiteley.
CRICKET
Police question Sri Lanka cricketer over hotel rape
Sri Lankan police have questioned a player for the national cricket team after a Norwegian woman was allegedly raped in a hotel room while he was present. Opening batsman Danushka Gunathilaka, 27, has already been suspended by Sri Lanka Cricket on a “misconduct” charge after a close associate of his was arrested for sexual assault in the team hotel in Colombo. Gunathilaka was quizzed by police about an incident at the weekend when his friend Sandeep Jude Selliah, 26, was accused of raping one of two Norwegian women in their room.
CYCLING
Thomas top as Quintana wins stage 17 of TourColombian Nairo Quintana won the 17th stage of the Tour de France, a 65km mountain trek from Bagneres-de-Luchon as Geraint Thomas took a big step towards overall victory on Wednesday. Quintana attacked at the foot of the last climb up to the Col du Portet to beat Ireland’s Dan Martin by 28 seconds. Thomas was third, 47 seconds off the pace as he extended his overall lead after defending champion and Team Sky team mate Chris Froome crossed the line 1:35 off the pace. Overall, Thomas leads Dutchman Tom Dumoulin by 1:59 and fellow Briton Froome by 2:31.
SWIMMING
Lochte ban ‘shows US tough on doping’
Ryan Lochte’s 14-month ban for use of a prohibited intravenous infusion was the right call, said US swimming stars; they just hope athletes in other countries are being held to similarly high standards. “I don’t think that this punishment would have necessarily been as strict if he was part of certain other federations, to be totally honest,” said Nathan Adrian, whose five Olympic victories include 100m freestyle gold at the 2012 London Olympics. Lochte, a six-time Olympic champion, was suspended by the US Anti-Doping Agency on Monday for use of the IV, which isn’t allowed even though the infusion involved permitted substances.
AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE

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