SPORTS DAY: Kohli acts cool ahead of first England Test

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SPORTS DAY: Kohli acts cool ahead of first England Test

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

Journalist

CRICKET
Kohli says he has nothing to prove in England Tests
Indian captain Virat Kohli brushed off talk of having to prove his batting ability on English soil ahead of the five-Test series against the hosts starting at Edgbaston on Wednesday. Kohli struggled to make an impact when India last toured England in 2014, scoring 134 runs in 10 innings, but has since emerged as one of the most reliable batsmen in the world across all three formats of the game. “I’m not in a frame of mind to prove myself in any country, I just want to perform for the team,” said the 29-year-old ahead of what will be England’s 1,000th five-day match.
Is the Indian Premier League headed to SA?
Cricket SA chief executive Thabang Moroe has revealed that they would jump at the opportunity to host the money spinning Indian Premier League if the event comes to SA next year. Indian officials are considering an alternative destination for the hugely popular tournament as next year’s competition could coincide with that country’s general elections.
Proteas’ World Cup preparation will go up a gear 
Among the many reasons why South Africa will want to play to their potential at the 2019 World Cup‚ add the fact that the tournament is likely to mark the end of several careers. AB de Villiers and Morné Morkel have already retired and Faf du Plessis has more than hinted that the competition will be his swansong. Now this from Dale Steyn: “I will be trying to get to that World Cup‚ but after the World Cup I don’t see myself playing white-ball cricket for South Africa.” Every time SA have gone to the tournament they have arrived as one of the favourites only to leave early having imploded when it mattered most.SOCCER
Ajax Amsterdam to pull plug on Ajax Cape Town?
Ajax Amsterdam are reconsidering their relationship with their SA affiliate in the wake of Ajax Cape Town being relegated to the National First Division. The Cape side decided against pursuing further legal steps to keep their topflight status. Ajax Cape Town boss Ari Efstathiou co-owns the club with the Dutch giants and said his partners from the Netherlands had not been pleased by the “Ndorogate” saga and its outcome. “They are extremely disappointed‚” he said.New Chiefs coach Solinas finally gets work permit
Kaizer Chiefs coach Giovanni Solinas has received his work permit‚ the club have confirmed. Amakhosi’s new coach will take his place on the bench assuming charge of Chiefs’  season opener in their Absa Premiership fixture against Mamelodi Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday. Solinas was apponited Chiefs’ new coach (replacing Steve Komphela‚ who resigned in April) on July 13 after a prolonged search for a successor by Amakhosi.
RUGBY
No fear for the Crusaders, says Elton Jantjies
Lions’ talisman Elton Jantjies says the lessons‚ if not the pain‚ of two previous finals are the best preparation a team could hope for going into a third successive Super Rugby climax. The Lions’ talisman will line up for his third straight final with his teammates‚ following defeat to the Hurricanes in 2016 and the Crusaders last year. “I don’t feel pressure because we are prepared. We’ve been to two finals in a row‚ now a third. You can’t ask for much better preparation for Super Rugby finals‚” said Jantjies.
England RFU give Eddie Jones their backingHead coach Eddie Jones has the backing of the Rugby Football Union (RFU) though they did raise issues surrounding his confronting South Africa fans on the three-Test tour which England lost 2-1. England’s victory in the final Test ended a run of five successive defeats which had seen them lose their Six Nations crown and pressure mount on the combative Australian. However, despite this with the World Cup in Japan a year away RFU chief executive Steve Brown said Jones’s overall record — he delivered a Grand Slam within months of replacing Stuart Lancaster following the humiliating first round exit in the 2015 World Cup — stood him in good stead.
WINTER OLYMPICS
China scours temples for Winter Olympic gold
A Chinese kung-fu monk rockets down the halfpipe, his robe fluttering behind him, bald head glistening in the sun, to claim snowboard Olympic gold. It may sound like a sequel to hit comedy film Cool Runnings, but for Beijing 2022 hosts China this is no joke. China is so worried about its lack of winter Olympians and losing face on home soil that it is plundering the martial arts schools of Buddhist monasteries in the search for a star. Frantic sports chiefs have plucked 125 teenage students from the renowned Songshan Shaolin Temple in the central province of Henan in the hope their martial arts prowess can translate into medal-winning performances on the snow.
BASKETBALL
LeBron just what doctor ordered for NBA Lakers
LeBron James says he is looking forward to the challenge of turning around the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, who are coming off the worst five-year period in franchise history. “I like the challenge of being able to help a team get to places that they haven’t been in quite a while,” James said. “And obviously the Lakers haven’t made the playoffs in a few years, but the Lakers organisation and historical franchise matches up there with all the greats. And for me to be a part of that, I think it’s a great move not only for me but for my family and for the history of basketball in general.”
- AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE

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