SPORTS DAY: Might it be Siya’s big moment in Monaco?
Your roundup of the sporting news of the day
Kolisi is only SA star for Laureus awards
Springbok captain Siya Kolisi is the only South African nominated in any category for the 2019 Laureus World Sports Awards‚ which take place in Monaco next month. Kolisi‚ who became the first black player to captain the Springbok in Test rugby history when he led them against England last June‚ is nominated in the Moment of the Year category. Whiteley back in training
Warren Whiteley has returned to training with the Lions after suffering a calf injury with the Springboks in November, coach Swys de Bruin said. “Warren is over the worst and it is now a matter of monitoring his progress but he’s busy training with the rest of the squad,” De Bruin said.
Specman eyeing Super performances
Blitzboks winger Rosko Specman wants to make an impression in the upcoming Super Rugby season. The sevens star‚ who was a surprise acquisition by the Bulls last month‚ said he was ready to make a contribution during the tournament if given the opportunity to play‚ as the Pretoria side look to reach at least the playoffs. His chances are expected to be limited because Cornal Hendricks and Travis Ismaiel are ahead of him in the pecking order.
‘Gibson was hired to win World Cup’
Ottis Gibson’s record‚ particularly in the red ball format‚ may be impressive, but he may not be around as national coach after the World Cup which ends in July. As things stand the premise on which Gibson was appointed – to win the World Cup – still applies until the Cricket SA (CSA) board rules otherwise. “When the board hired Ottis‚ it was purely to win the World Cup,” said CSA chief executive Thabang Moroe.
Serena in charge as Halep and Raonic battle
Serena Williams stepped up her drive for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam Thursday by swatting aside Eugenie Bouchard, as world number one Novak Djokovic won an emotional 2008 Australian Open final rematch with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. But women’s top seed Simona Halep and young gun Alexander Zverev had to dig deep to make the third round on a day of epic battles. In another titanic battle, Canadian Milos Raonic ousted 2014 champion Stan Wawrinka in four tightly-contested sets that all went to tie-breaks, while eighth seed Kei Nishikori was stretched to a draining five sets against Ivo Karlovic.
Hewitt fires back at Tomic
Lleyton Hewitt accused Bernard Tomic of blackmail and physical threats against him and his family in explosive allegations on Thursday as Australian tennis plunged to new lows. The veteran two-time Grand Slam champion labelled the firebrand player a “clown” and said he would never again feature in Davis Cup while he captained the Australian team.
Romance sets tongues wagging Elina Svitolina revealed on Thursday she is dating French star Gael Monfils after he was spotted in her player box at the Australian Open and expressed surprise after being questioned about it during an on-court interview. The 24-year-old confirmed in a press conference that “we are dating” and said she was taken aback by the interest.
‘Chiefs can reverse two-goal deficit’
A 3-1 deficit from the first leg might seem a mountain to climb, but Kaizer Chiefs’ competitive captain Willard Katsande is not giving up‚ and believes there are a few factors that can give his team a fighting chance against Zesco United at FNB Stadium on Saturday night. Chiefs might have conceded a few too many goals in the away leg in Ndola last Saturday of their Caf Confederation Cup playoff round tie. “In Africa‚ if you score a goal away it’s a plus for you. We need to try to keep a clean sheet. Because we are capable of scoring two goals per game. We just need to be patient and stick to our game plan.”
Ertugral confident he can rescue Maritzburg
Muhsin Ertugral says his experience of 20 years of coaching in the Premier Soccer League makes him believe that relegation-threatened Maritzburg United can still save their top-flight status. This is despite a third loss since his arrival at the club‚ despite a gutsy showing against champions Mamelodi Sundowns away from home on Wednesday. “There are still a lot of points to be won and I think I have a little bit of experience.”
Chelsea agree Higuain loan
Chelsea have agreed a deal to sign striker Gonzalo Higuain on loan from Juventus until the end of the season, according to reports in the British media. The Argentina international joined the Italian champions in 2016 but was loaned to AC Milan at the start of the current season where he has scored eight goals in 22 appearances this term.
Investigative journalist shot dead in Ghana
A Ghanaian undercover journalist who helped expose corruption in African football has been shot dead in the capital Accra, police said on Thursday. Ahmed Husein was part of a team led by award-winning journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas, whose probe led to the resignation of the head of the Ghana Football Association.
Plummer renews call for SA league
Barely a day after minister of sport Tokozile Xasa pledged R5m towards the formation of a national women’s soccer league‚ Proteas netball coach Norma Plummer has reiterated her call for the introduction of a professional league in SA. The Proteas are in Liverpool, the underdogs in the Quad Series also featuring England‚ New Zealand and Australia, nations that have established professional leagues.
Sagan closes in on Tour Down Under lead
Triple world champion Peter Sagan held off former race winners Luis Leon Sanchez and Daryl Impey to win stage three and close in on the overall lead of Australia’s Tour Down Under on Thursday. Sagan closed to within one point of overall tour leader Patrick Bevin of New Zealand. Defending champion Impey is lying fifth.
- AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE