Trophy hangs in balance
Ozekis Kaio and Chiyotaikai and rank-and-filer Miyabiyama posted wins yesterday, setting up a three-way tie for the lead on the 13th day of the Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament. The field of leaders narrowed from six the day before, with ozeki Musoyama and lower-ranked wrestlers Tokitsuumi and Tosanoumi all suffering defeats to go to 9-4. Also trailing the leaders was sekiwake Wakanosato. In the day's final bout at Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium, Kaio easily dispatched No. 7 maegashira Tokitsuumi to improve to 10-3. Tokitsuumi had been atop the standings just two days ago. In the showdown between ozekis, Chiyotaikai made quick work of Musoyama with a flurry of arm thrusts to the throat and chest. Top-ranked maegashira Miyabiyama kept pace with the leaders, shoving out Kasuganishiki, a No. 12 maegashira.
Australia looking good
Australia led Bangladesh by 24 runs with eight first innings wickets in hand after the opening day of their first test on Friday. Australia finished the day in complete control at 121 for two after Bangladesh had collapsed to 97 all out within three hours of the start. Darren Lehmann was unbeaten on 51 at the close with Justin Langer not out 40 after Matthew Hayden (11) and Ricky Ponting (10) both went cheaply. Glenn McGrath and Brett Lee captured three wickets each as Australia's bowlers ripped apart Bangladesh in 42.2 overs. Only four Bangladesh players reached double figures with Mohammed Ashraful top-scoring with 23 and captain Khaled Mahmud making 21.
US beats Cook Islands
The US scored a morale-boasting 62-38 win over the Cook Islands on Thursday in the world netball championship, showing off progress made in the last four years. Coming into the tournament ranked No. 14, the US will leave as No. 9 if they can beat Trinidad and Tobago yesterday. The US team lost by six to Trinidad earlier. "The win brought us back to the vision ... to be ranked among the top 10," US coach Adrienne Spencer said. "Today we cut down on the errors and played smart, simple netball." Georgina Hibbert, perfect in the first half, had a game-high 47 points. The Cook Islands committed 35 turnovers. "Our entire system totally broke down," Cook Islands captain Curly George said. "Our shots were not going, our mid-court and defense left a lot to be desired. The whole thing just broke down."
Barcelona track Ronaldinho
Barcelona are still hopeful that their final take-it-or-leave-it bid to sign Brazilian playmaker Ronaldinho from Paris St Germain could be enough to bring the player to the Nou Camp. "It's still open," Barcelona's director of football, Txiki Begiristain told reporters at the club's ground on Thursday. "We've made an offer to the player and to the club and we haven't moved from that position." Barcelona president Joan Laporta revealed on Wednesday that the club had pulled out of a bidding war with Manchester United for the World Cup winning Brazilian. Laporta's comments appeared to give the green light for the English champions to complete the signing of a player who stated a preference for United earlier this month but Begiristain believes that Ronaldinho has now changed his opinion.
Klitschko to fight Moli
Wladimir Klitschko will fight Fabio Eduardo Moli of Argentina in a heavyweight bout on Aug. 30 in Munich. It will be Klitschko's first fight since he was knocked out in the second round by 37-year-old South African Corrie Sanders on March 8 and lost the lightly regarded WBO title. His win-loss record dropped to 40-2. Moli, with a record of 29-2 (17 KOs), will fight outside Argentina for the first time. The 34-year-old last fought on June 13, when he beat Russian Alex Vassilev over 10 rounds on points. "We decided on Moli because he is a big, hard-hitting man," Klitschko's promoter Klaus-Peter Kohl said on Thursday. "Wladimir needs a challenge to regain his confidence in the ring." Klitschko's older brother, Vitali, lost a WBC title fight to Lennox Lewis last month when the bout was stopped in the sixth round because of bad cuts around Vitali's left eye.