SPORTS DAY: Highlanders will be test for hot and cold Lions


SPORTS DAY: Highlanders will be test for hot and cold Lions

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

Sports reporter

Dyantyi defends the Lions
The Lions’ six wins and five defeats is a report card that speaks of rampant inconsistency, but wing Aphiwe Dyantyi on Tuesday said: “We can say that for all the teams in Super Rugby this year. That could be down to a lot of things I don’t want to get into. We just have to focus on this weekend’s match‚” he said about the clash against the Highlanders.
Bulls confirm Pollard departure
The Blue Bulls Company have confirmed that Springbok flyhalf Handré Pollard will join French club Montpellier and he is set to be replaced in 2020 by the returning Morne Steyn.
Etzebeth has unfinished business at Stormers
Stormers lock Eben Etzebeth says he has yet to think about his pending move to Toulon in France after the current Super Rugby campaign. “For me it’s the challenge of facing the Crusaders this weekend that I am thinking about and a little further along‚ about staying in with a chance for the play-offs. We are going to have to win most‚ if not all of our remaining five games to make the quarterfinals. That’s what I’m focused on.”
Cheetahs coach heads to Italy
The Cheetahs have agreed to release coach Franco Smith to the Italian national team at the end of the year. Smith, who is the Cheetahs head coach and director of rugby, will take over the reins of the Azzurri on January 1 2020 in a deal set to keep him there until after the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
More Du Preez names for Sale
The Sale Sharks have clearly become a home away from home for the Du Preez rugby family‚ with the twins Jean-luc and Daniel joining the Gallagher Premiership club for a short stint. The loose-forwards‚ key members of the Sharks side that is coached by their father Robert‚ will join the team on a loan deal either after the World Cup if they’re selected or ahead of the 2019/20 season.
Baxter wants another look at Veldwijk
Bafana Bafana coach Stuart Baxter is considering calling Lars Veldwijk‚ the striker who banged in 24 goals in 36 games for Sparta Rotterdam in the Dutch First Division this past season‚ up to the Cosafa Cup in Durban for a further look. “I had a short look at him and I liked what I saw. To the degree that‚ while I don’t think he is a competitor to burst into the team‚ he’s a very interesting impact player for us‚” Baxter said.
Malesela has faith in Galaxy
TS Galaxy coach Dan Malesela is confident that his 10-month-old National First Division charges are ready for whatever Kaizer Chiefs throw at them in the Nedbank Cup final at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday. “If we can take on Arrows then surely we can take on Chiefs‚” Malesela said of Amakhosi, who failed to qualify for the top eight in the PSL after their defeat to Chippa United in Port Elizabeth at the weekend.
Statistics support lower tier sides
Both Royal Eagles and Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila will be licking their lips in anticipation ahead of the start of the Premier Soccer League’s promotion-relegation playoffs in Durban on Wednesday night‚ aware that the statistics are firmly in their favour. The pair, second and third in the National First Division‚ will take on Maritzburg United over the next weeks for one spot in the top flight for next season. Only four times in the previous 14 playoffs has the club that finished 15th in the PSL managed to retain their status.
CRICKETTahir gets county contractWhat will Imran Tahir do after the World Cup‚ considering he’s 40 and will be out of contract with Cricket SA? Retire? Fat chance. Surrey announced on Tuesday that the leg spinner would join them for the county T20 competition‚ which starts four days after the World Cup final. “I’m always looking for new and exciting opportunities‚” Surrey quoted Tahir as saying on their website.MOTOR SPORTDutch GP back on F1 calendarThe Dutch Grand Prix will return to the Zandvoort circuit in 2020 after a 35-year absence from the calendar, F1 announced on Tuesday.– AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE

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