SPORTS DAY: Lions beef up to prove they’re not chickenfeed

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SPORTS DAY: Lions beef up to prove they’re not chickenfeed

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

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RUGBY
Lions opt for bulk and experience
After being mauled in the Jaguares line-out drives last week‚ the Lions have opted for bulk and experience in their squad to take on the Rebels on Saturday. They have restored the Springbok lock pairing of Stephan Lewies and Marvin Orie‚ while redeploying last week’s second-row starters Rhyno Herbst and Ruan Vermaak to the substitutes’ bench for their Super Rugby clash at Ellis Park.
Watson starts as Scotland make six changes
Scotland coach Gregor Townsend has recalled back-row forward Hamish Watson as one of six changes to his starting side for Saturday’s Calcutta Cup clash away to England. The Scots will hope to finish the Six Nations by retaining the Calcutta Cup with just their second win of the Championship following last week’s 18-11 loss to leaders Wales at Murrayfield – a match where Watson impressed off the bench. Meanwhile, Joe Cokanasiga has been dropped by England coach Eddie Jones. SOCCER
And SA’s share of the 2010 World Cup profit is ...
There will be R53m left from the original R450m of the 2010 Fifa World Cup Legacy Trust‚ once the R96m allocated to the SA Football Association (Safa) this year has been deducted. SA’s share of profit for hosting the World Cup amounted to nearly R453m)‚ which went to the Legacy Trust. Interest received on that over nine years has been R149m. The expenditure has been R449m‚ leaving R150m. Of that R96m has been dispensed to Safa‚ leaving R53‚691‚920.
Pitso slams poorly run continental competition
Pitso Mosimane has slammed the African Champions League as poorly run and described the intimidation his players go through when they travel to Arabic-speaking north Africa as his side headed to Morocco on Thursday to try and win their group when they play Wydad Casablanca on Saturday. “It’s never been nice‚” he said. “I went to Setif [in Algeria] and do you remember what happened?” The match in Setif in June 2016 was called off before the end because of fan violence as Sundowns were headed to an unexpected away win.
World Cup expansion to dominate Fifa agenda
The possible expansion of the 2022 World Cup is poised to dominate discussions when Fifa’s ruling council meets in Miami on Friday. Fifa president Gianni Infantino wants to increase the number of teams due to take part in the footballing showpiece from 32 to 48, bringing forward by four years an expansion which has already been set for the 2026 finals.
CRICKET
Nortje prepared to take the knocks
Speedster Anrich Nortje is prepared to take the knocks as he grows into his role as a strike bowler for the Proteas. “The last two overs didn’t go according to plan but I think it’s a nice learning curve. I can only take some positives from this and learn from it‚” said Nortje, who went for 23 runs in his seventh over and 15 off his eighth during the Proteas’ last match against Sri Lanka.
No panic for Kohli despite drubbing Virat Kohli has said his team is not panicking about the World Cup despite India suffering their first one-day series loss at home since 2015 at the hands of a resurgent Australia. “None of the guys in the changing room are panicking, the support staff is not feeling down after this defeat. The XI is clear in our head. We just have to take better decisions in pressure situations to go far in the World Cup.”
MOTOR SPORT
Raikkonen says partying made him better driver
Former world champion Kimi Raikkonen admits he used to be a party animal and says it made him a better driver. Over the years he gained a reputation for his off-track lifestyle, but the 2007 world champion said finding the right work-life balance had benefited him. “I’ve often been driving better [after] doing whatever I want between the races than if I’m just not having fun and drinks and stuff. Racing and partying – for me it was normal.” Now 39, Raikkonen put the theory to the test back in 2013 when after finishing second in the Bahrain Grand Prix he went on a 16-day binge before sobering up to finish second in Barcelona.
ATHLETICS
Kenya, Ethiopia urge IAAF not to cut distance races Kenyan athletics chiefs said on Thursday they would oppose the decision by world governing body to drop the 5,000m and 10,000m from the lucrative Diamond League circuit. Athletics Kenya president Jackson Tuwei said it was “totally unfair” to drop the two events in which African athletes have been doing very well. Ethiopia’s long distance great Haile Gebrselassie said the decision to limit the longest event in the circuit to 3,000m will disproportionately affect Kenya and Ethiopia, two powerhouses of middle and long distance running.
- AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE

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