■ Rugby Union
HADDEN NAMES SQUAD
Scotland coach Frank Hadden has named a 44-man squad for a training session at Murrayfield on Dec. 17 to begin preparations for next year's Six Nations. Hadden has stuck with the players he used for Scotland's World Cup preparations and has added four new players who have performed well this season in the Magners League. Number eight Johnnie Beattie, whose father John Beattie played in the same position for Scotland and the British and Irish Lions, received a call-up along with fellow backrow player Ross Rennie, Edinburgh flyhalf Phil Godman and Glasgow tighthead prop Moray Low.
Australia woos Troussier
Globe-trotting Frenchman Philippe Troussier has held talks in Australia about the vacant Socceroos job, heightening suggestions that he is the frontrunner to become the team's new coach. Troussier arrived secretly in Sydney on Sunday for talks with Football Federation Australia (FFA) officials before departing on Monday, the Australian newspaper reported yesterday. It said his talks with FFA chief executive Ben Buckley and others signalled that German Jurgen Klinsmann and Italian Fabio Capello were now out of the running due to pay demands and their lack of experience of Asian soccer.
■ RUGBY UNION
Cohen signs for Brive
England and former Northampton winger Ben Cohen has signed for French Top 14 strugglers Brive, the club confirmed on Tuesday. The 29-year-old 2003 World Cup winner has agreed a deal that will keep him in France until June 2009 with the option for an additional year. Cohen had been without a club since leaving relegated Northampton in August. He bought himself out of his Saints contract so he could join Leicester, but his testimonial earnings would have broken their salary cap. Cohen said he was excited to be joining a club with a tradition such as Brive, stating that he was ready for "an attractive and interesting challenge."
Beckham souvenirs on sale
A single french fry, reportedly dropped by David Beckham during his recent stay in New Zealand, is among souvenirs of the soccer superstar's visit offered for sale on Internet auction sites. A single bidder has offered NZ$1 (US$0.76) for the slightly salted piece of fried potato, which the seller claims was dropped by Beckham during a stroll around Wellington. The seller vouches for the item's authenticity and suggests it is ideal for anyone "who actually cares about David Beckham." Sharp-eyed souvenir hunters also pounced on items left behind by Beckham when he dined with Los Angeles Galaxy teammates at a Wellington fried chicken restaurant.
■ RUGBY UNION
Mark Regan sanctioned
England World Cup hooker Mark Regan has been sanctioned by Bristol for disobeying orders and playing for the Barbarians against South Africa at Twickenham last weekend, the club said on Tuesday. "We had a meeting with Mark today and, as a result, he has been sanctioned in accordance with a breach of the disciplinary conditions of his contract," Bristol said on their Web site. "We now consider the matter closed and will not be making any further comment on the matter." The club did not reveal details of Regan's punishment.
DECREASED TENSION: The US players’ lawyers said that the soccer federation no longer disputes that the jobs of the women’s and men’s national teams require equal skill Women players suing the US Soccer Federation (USSF) said in in court documents filed on Tuesday that the federation has acknowledged that the jobs of male and female soccer players require equal skill. The language seemed to signal a decrease in tension between the parties after language in documents filed by the federation’s lawyers earlier last month provoked widespread outrage in saying that playing on the men’s national team required a higher level of skill based on speed and strength and carried greater responsibility. The fierce backlash — not only from the women players, but also from sponsors such as Coca-Cola —
A businessman who received millions of dollars for his work on Tokyo’s successful campaign to host the 2020 Olympic Games has said that he played a key role in securing the support of a former Olympics powerbroker suspected by French prosecutors of taking bribes to help Japan’s bid. Haruyuki Takahashi, a former executive at the advertising agency Dentsu, was paid US$8.2 million by the committee that spearheaded Tokyo’s bid for the 2020 Games, financial records showed. Takahashi said the work included lobbying International Olympic Committee (IOC) members such as Lamine Diack, the ex-Olympics powerbroker, and that he gave Diack gifts, including digital
If British industry succeeds in saving lives during the COVID-19 pandemic, it would in part be thanks to the pioneering role played by Formula One (F1) racing teams in the country. Seven of F1’s 10 teams have joined forces with leading aerospace and engineering firms to ramp up production of ventilators, while Mercedes has also worked with medics and academics to produce an alternative breathing aid. Normally obsessed with improving the performance of cars that race at more than 320kph, the teams are stripping back lifesaving devices and using computer simulation to test whether more simplified models can be mass produced. The seven
BITING THE BULLET: Barcelona’s Lionel Messi said that top players would make contributions so that the club’s employees can collect 100 percent of their salary Three-quarters of Rugby Australia’s staff were temporarily laid off yesterday amid huge financial losses from the sport’s coronavirus-enforced shutdown, while Lionel Messi confirmed on Monday that Barcelona’s players would take a 70 percent pay cut to ensure that the club’s other employees are paid. The cuts to rugby staff were “the toughest decision in the game’s history,” governing body CEO Raelene Castle said. “Although extremely painful, they are necessary to ensure ... we are able to come out the other side of this global crisis, fully operational and ready to throw everything into the rebuild.” The sport has been hit hard by