Sat, Jan 01, 2011 - Page 18 News List




Hameed sorry for interview

Pakistan’s Yasir Hameed said yesterday he had apologized to authorities over an interview with a British tabloid in which he accused fellow players of fixing matches. “I was trapped into it but I should not have said all that before a stranger and I apologize to all the players who were hurt because of that,” Hameed said. Hameed was secretly filmed telling undercover reporters from the News of the World in September that his fellow players fix matches with impunity. “They were doing it [fixing] in almost every match,” Yasir said. “God knows what they were up to. Scotland Yard was after them for ages. It makes me angry because I’m playing my best and they are trying to lose.” The conversation was broadcast two days after three Pakistani players — Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir — were suspended by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on charges of spot-fixing during the team’s Lord’s Test against England in August. The trio will find out at the ICC’s anti-corruption tribunal in Doha, Qatar, from Thursday to Jan. 11 whether the suspensions are to be turned into bans or they are absolved. Hameed initially denied he had given any interview but admitted he was trapped by an undercover reporter who was in the guise of an airline representative who wanted him and other players to sign up to a commercial.


Wigan sign Spaniard

Wigan Athletic have signed Spanish defender Adrian Lopez until the end of the season, the Premier League club said yesterday. The 23-year-old free agent has been training with the club this season after leaving Deportivo La Coruna but has been awaiting FIFA clearance to sign. “It’s great to see Adrian’s desire to play for Wigan Athletic can finally be fulfilled,” Wigan’s Spanish coach Roberto Martinez told the club’s Web site. “He is a defender who is very calm under pressure, and is a great reader of the game.” Lopez played twice for Spain’s under-21s and made 39 appearances for Deportivo.


South Korea beat Syria

South Korea continued their preparations for the Asian Cup with a comfortable 1-0 friendly win over Syria on Thursday in Abu Dhabi. Youngster Ji Dong-won, who graduated from the under-23 side this year, staked his claim for a regular place in the starting lineup when he scored the winner in the 82nd minute, smashing a left-foot shot into the top left corner after outsmarting two defenders inside the penalty area. South Korea dominated much of the proceedings, but lack of sharpness from their forwards and some stout defense from the Syrians ensured the scoreline remained blank until the last eight minutes. Two-time Asian Cup champions South Korea have been drawn in Group C with Australia, Bahrain and India. Their opening match is against Bahrain on Jan. 10. Syria are in Group B with Saudi Arabia, Japan and Jordan.


Swede becomes Celt

Celtic have signed former Arsenal and Sweden midfielder Freddie Ljungberg, the Scottish club said on Thursday. The 33-year-old player was to be officially unveiled at a news conference yesterday and could make his debut in the Old Firm derby against Rangers tomorrow, Celtic said on their Web site. Ljungberg made his name with Arsenal, playing more than 200 games for the English club between 1998 and 2007, before moving to West Ham United and US sides Seattle Sounders and Chicago Fire.

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