Sat, Apr 14, 2007 - Page 19 News List

Sports Briefs

AGENCIES

■ BOXING

Tyson's drug trial postponed

Former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson appeared in court in Mesa, Arizona, on Thursday and learned he will go on trial on Aug. 20 on charges of drug possession and driving under the influence of drugs. Tyson was fresh out of a California rehabilitation facility and said very little during the five-minute proceeding. "Yes, ma'am," were his only words, uttered after Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Sherry Stephens asked if he agreed to the trial date, which was pushed back 30 days at his attorneys' request. Tyson did not speak outside the courtroom, where reporters tried to question him and followed him to a luxury sport-utility vehicle.

■ SOCCER

Online bettors jailed

A Vietnamese court has jailed 12 members of an illegal online soccer betting ring and handed suspended terms to 10 more defendants, the state-run Vietnam News Agency said yesterday. The network based in Ho Chi Minh City took online bets worth up to US$50,000 per day on matches in the Vietnamese domestic league and in Germany, Italy, Spain, Britain and in the European Championships from 2003 to 2005. The Ho Chi Minh City People's Court on Thursday sentenced 22 defendants -- three men to between four and seven years and nine men to between one and three years, the state media report said. Ten members of the network were given suspended sentences of one to three years, the news agency said.

■ RUGBY

Aussie union chief to resign

Gary Flowers said yesterday he will resign as chief executive officer of the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) at the end of the year. Flowers became head of the union in June 2004. "After much thought and discussion with my family I have informed the chairman and the board of the ARU that I will not be seeking to enter a new contract," Flowers said at a media conference. "The terms of my contract stipulate that I give advance notice of my intentions and I have reached the conclusion that now is the time to announce it." Flowers replaced John O'Neill as head of the union after O'Neill left to become chief executive of Football Federation Australia, the top soccer body in Australia. O'Neill has since resigned.

■ RUGBY

Larkham considers offer

Australian star fly-half Stephen Larkham is considering an offer to join leading French club Toulouse after this year's World Cup, reports said yesterday. The club has made Larkham a "lucrative" offer to take over from Frederik Michalak, who opted to join the Natal Sharks for next year's Super 14 tourney, rugbyexclusive.com reported. "The idea of playing for a great club like Toulouse is very attractive and it certainly would be another challenge," the rangy playmaker was quoted as saying.

■ BADMINTON

Chen's return questioned

Chinese badminton coach Li Yongbo said Chen Hong's comeback to competition after retiring for only two months was not good for the national team, local media reported. World No. 5 Chen, who quit the national team after being omitted from the talent-rich squad for December's Asian Games, returned to action this week as a free player at the Asian Championships in Malaysia. Chen competing as a free agent outside the national team -- paying his own tour expenses but keeping all of his winnings -- was "absolutely not a good thing for the national team," Li said.

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