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.
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.
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.
Switch is on for Romario
Soccer officials changed the schedule of the Brazilian Cup on Monday so Romario got a chance to score his 1,000th career goal at Maracana stadium. Romario's Vasco side was supposed to play its match today against Gama at Sao Januario stadium in Rio de Janeiro, but the game was transferred to Maracana at the striker's request, Vasco spokesman Roberto Garofalo said. The match between Fluminense and America, which originally was scheduled for the same time at Maracana, had its start delayed several hours and will be played as part of a doubleheader.
Coaches elected to Hall
Phil Jackson, a winner of 10 NBA titles as a player and coach, and fellow coaches Pedro Ferrandiz of Spain and Mirko Novosel of Yugoslavia were selected for the US Basketball Hall of Fame on Monday. Also selected were Roy Williams, who has taken two schools to the US college championship final, the 1966 US college champion Texas Western team, four-time WNBA championship coach Van Chancellor and former NBA referee Mendy Rudolph. Jackson has won nine NBA titles as a coach with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, matching Red Auerbach's record. He also played for the 1973 champion New York Knicks.
Blanco to sign with Fire
Mexican forward Cuauhtemoc Blanco arrived in Chicago and was greeted by a throng of 5,000 on Monday, a day before US Major League Soccer's (MLS) Chicago Fire said he would sign with the club. Blanco will become the latest high-profile player to join an MLS club under the US league's "designated player rule" following England's David Beckham, who signed with the Los Angeles Galaxy in January, and former US international Claudio Reyna, who will debut for the New York Red Bulls when the season opens on Saturday. Like Beckham, Blanco's contract with Mexico City side Club America expires in June, after which the El Tri veteran will be eligible to join Chicago.
NFL cancels China game
The exhibition game scheduled for China in August was canceled on Monday by the NFL, which said it wanted to concentrate its "global resources" on next October's regular-season game in London. The game had been set for Aug. 9 in Beijing, the second of two consecutive contests between the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks, who had been scheduled to meet in Seattle the previous week. That game also was called off, NFL spokesman Michael Signora said on Monday. Although San Francisco and Arizona met in Mexico City in 2005, the NFL has never played a regular-season game outside North America. The first will take place in London on Oct. 28.
Dog chomps Gonzalez
Fifth-ranked Fernando Gonzalez has paid a price for his love of animals, Chilean state television reported on Monday. Gonzalez was driving his car on a busy Santiago avenue on Saturday afternoon when he saw a dog in the middle of the street that had been struck by another vehicle. Gonzalez stopped to pick up the dog and take it to a clinic, but the animal bit the small finger of his right hand. "It was a small dog that I tried to take a veterinary clinic. It's nothing serious," Gonzalez said.
‘CRIMINAL ACT’: The UCI said it ‘strongly condemns’ Dylan Groenewegen’s ‘dangerous behavior,’ which left Jakobsen in critical condition and injured other cyclists Dutch cyclist Fabio Jakobsen was in a coma on Wednesday, in “serious” condition, after he was thrown into and over a barrier at 80kph in the conclusion to the opening stage of the Tour de Pologne. Footage showed 23-year-old Jakobsen, of the Deceuninck-Quick-Step, racing elbow-to-elbow with fellow Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen of Jumbo-Visma as both men frantically tussled in a tight sprint to the line in Katowice. However, Jakobsen came off worst, somersaulting over the barriers before colliding with a photographer after Groenewegen had veered suddenly to the right, squeezing his rival into the security wall. “His condition is very serious. His life is
Growing concern over health standards in e-sports has prompted a new federation to pledge to address the problem, as players fall victim to conditions ranging from wrist injuries to obesity, stress and diabetes. The retirement of top Chinese player Jian Zihao, better known by his gaming handle “Uzi,” sent tremors through the booming sport, whose revenues are predicted to reach US$1.1 billion this year, according to industry analyst Newzoo. The 23-year-old, hailed as an “icon” of the League of Legends game, stepped away from e-sports in June, saying that “chronic stress, obesity, irregular diet, staying up late and other reasons” had given
WEEKEND MATCHES: While Tatung FC made good on their chances early on, Taiwan Steel rallied to win the game 2-3 and move to the top with Taichung Futuro Sunday’s action saw Taichung Futuro, Taipower FC and Taiwan Steel tied for first place on 30 points in the Taiwan Football Premier League, while Hang Yuan FC picked up a point to take the No. 4 spot on 25 points after holding Taipower to a scoreless draw. In Taoyuan, Tatung FC hosted Taiwan Steel. It was an exciting matchup, as the visitors rallied from 2-0 down to take the game with three goals. Tatung made good on their chances early on. Honduran midfielder Elias Argueta opened the account 15 minutes into the game with a low shot from the right. Three minutes
Ronnie O’Sullivan delivered a scathing attack on the next generation of snooker players after he made the quarter-finals of the World Snooker Championship on Sunday, ending Chinese star Ding Junhui’s world championship dream. The mercurial 44-year-old Englishman won an enthralling high-quality second-round encounter 13-10 to set up a quarter-final clash with three-time champion Mark Williams. When asked by the BBC whether he thought he would remain at the top of the game for this long, the Briton, who turned professional in 1992, said the poor quality of younger players had secured his position and that something drastic would have to happen