Wed, Apr 04, 2007 - Page 18 News List

Sports Briefs


■ Soccer
Villa snatch a late draw

Gabriel Agbonlahor scored in the 83rd minute to earn Aston Villa a 1-1 draw with Everton in the Premier League on Monday. Agbonlahor scored with a low shot from the center of the penalty area, converting the rebound after Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard blocked a shot from John Carew. Joleon Lescott headed Everton into the lead with his first goal for the club in the 15th minute. Everton stayed in seventh place, with 47 points. The result extended Villa moved up one place to 14th with 35 points but is only five points ahead of 18th-placed Charlton.

■ Rugby Union

Japanese go abroad

The Japan Rugby Football Union (JRFU) is set to send a wave of young players to New Zealand and Australia in a bid to raise the level of the Japanese game. "We have already selected three to go to New Zealand and hopefully that will increase to about 10 this year," JRFU chief media officer Yasutaka Nagai said yesterday. "The basic plan is the forwards will go to New Zealand and the backs to Australia." Locks Tomoaki Taniguchi of Toyota Motors and Secom's Manabu Suzuki along with Chuo university's Shinya Makabe have been chosen to go to New Zealand. The JRFU devised the plan under the so-called "quarter-final project" as part of a long-term goal to reach the knockout stages of the 2011 World Cup in New Zealand.

■ Rugby Sevens

Drunken fans abuse coach

Two drunken South African fans hurled racist abuse at the country's rugby Sevens coach after the team were eliminated from the weekend's Hong Kong tournament, reports said on Tuesday. The men, who are thought to have traveled from South Africa for the event, also swore at and threatened coach Paul Treu as he gave a pitch-side interview to South African TV. Using derogatory Afrikaans words for black people, they accused Treu of not picking enough white players, the South China Morning Post newspaper said. South Africa fielded one white player through the tournament. The two men then threatened violence against Treu and then spat at him as he left the stadium.

■ Soccer

Coach guilty of match-fixing

The former coach of Malaysia's national soccer team was convicted of match-fixing yesterday in Singapore, local media reported. Chow Kwai Lam was found guilty of attempting to bribe a goalkeeper in Singapore's S League to let in goals in a June 2005 match, Channel NewsAsia reported on its Web site, citing a court ruling. Chow reportedly offered the Paya Lebar Punggol goalkeeper up to S$300 (US$197) plus a further undisclosed sum to fix the match, the report said. Chow, 63, had denied the charges. Sentencing was set for April 10. He faces a maximum S$100,000 (US$66,000) fine and a five-year jail term.

■ Soccer

Stam may be out for season

Ajax captain Jaap Stam could be sidelined for the rest of the season after injuring a hamstring in the team's win over Heracles Almelo. Ajax said on Monday the veteran defender would miss "a few weeks" because of Sunday's injury, which comes as the Amsterdam club mounts a challenge to overtake defending champion PSV Eindhoven with four matches remaining in the Dutch league. PSV, which faced Liverpool last night in the Champions League quarter-finals, is struggling in the league and winless in its last three matches, including a 5-1 loss to Ajax. PSV has 68 points from 30 matches, just three points ahead of Ajax.

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