Wed, Jan 05, 2011 - Page 19 News List

SPORTS BRIEFS

Agencies

FOOTBALL

Frazier new Vikings coach

The Minnesota Vikings have reached an agreement with Leslie Frazier to be their next coach. The Vikings announced on Monday they’re removing the interim tag from Frazier’s title. Frazier took over on Nov. 22 when Brad Childress was fired and the Vikings went 3-3 under him. The defensive coordinator under Childress and a former cornerback for the Chicago Bears, Frazier had a clear command of the locker room as he guided the Vikings through the end of a disappointing, dramatic season. Players have pushed for him to get the job on a permanent basis. Frazier is the eighth coach in the franchise’s 50-year history. Vikings owner Zygi Wilf touted Frazier’s “vast knowledge of the game” and the “great respect” the organization has for the 51-year-old.

SKIING

Heikkinen wins fourth stage

Matti Heikkinen of Finland won the fourth stage of the Tour de Ski in Oberstdorf, Germany, while Anna Haag of Sweden took victory in the women’s race, but the overall event standings did not change. Heikkinen claimed the best time on the second portion of the 20km mixed classic and free pursuit to win in a total time of 49 minutes, 20.1 seconds on Monday. Overall Tour de Ski leader Dario Cologna of Switzerland finished second, a second back from Heikkinen, to extend his advantage to 1 hour, 37 minutes, 51.0 seconds. In the women’s standings, Justyna Kowalczyk of Poland finished fifth to remain in front overall with a time of 1 hour, 1 minute, 52.3 seconds.

CRICKET

Pakistan draw warm-up

Pakistan’s pre-Test warm-up match against a New Zealand XI at Whangarei’s Cobham Oval ended in a tame draw with both sides agreeing to a truce midway through the third and final day yesterday. The New Zealand XI, in reality a shadow Test team, were 111 for four when stumps were pulled, an overall lead of 208. After the hosts posted 384 in their first innings, Pakistan recovered from a woeful start, when they were 39 for four, to be all out for 287. Skipper Misbah ul-Haq, who did not play in the recent Twenty20 series, earned valuable time in the middle with an unbeaten 126 in nearly six hours at the crease. The next best score for Pakistan was 35 by wicketkeeper Adnan Akmal. Seam bowler Umar Gul, who took three wickets in the first innings, continued his good form in the second with the dismissals of Brendon McCullum and Kane Williamson in the space of three balls, to end with two for 19. The first Test in the two-Test series between New Zealand and Pakistan starts in Hamilton tomorrow.

BASEBALL

Simon surrenders to police

Baltimore Orioles reliever Alfredo Simon has surrendered to Dominican police for questioning about a fatal shooting on New Year’s Eve. The Dominican pitcher arrived at national police headquarters on Monday. He was accompanied by his mother and lawyer, who gave detectives Simon’s gun as part of the investigation into the killing of a 25-year-old man. Police spokesman Maximo Baez says the 29-year-old player told detectives he fired twice into the air during a celebration in the northeast coastal town of Luperon. Simon is the main suspect in the fatal shooting. The dead man’s teenage brother was shot in the right arm and is hospitalized in the city of Santiago.

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