Leafs’ coach gets extension
Maple Leafs coach Ron Wilson got his Christmas wish. Two days after hinting on Twitter of his desire for a new contract, Wilson said the team gave him an extension. “‘He came! He came!’ Remember saying that as a little kid? Well he did: I got a new Red Ryder BB gun and a contract extension!” Wilson tweeted on Sunday morning. The team did not immediately respond to an e-mail seeking confirmation. Wilson tweeted on Friday what he wanted for Christmas was a new contract from general manager Brian Burke. “This Xmas could be better if Santa stuffs a certain piece of paper in my stocking. whatcouldthatbe,” Wilson posted on his Twitter account. The 56-year-old Wilson is in the final season of a four-year contract. The Leafs are sixth in the Eastern Conference with 40 points. Toronto have not made the playoffs in three previous seasons under Wilson, who is 119-120-42 with the Leafs.
Pakistan choose Whatmore
Pakistan’s cricket board on Sunday said it invited former World Cup winning Sri Lanka coach Dav Whatmore to finalize his appointment as head coach of the national team, an official said. The Pakistan cricket team are without a full-time coach since former paceman Waqar Younis left the post in September citing health problems. “We are in the process of finalizing the appointment and in this regard are in discussions with Whatmore,” Pakistan Cricket Board chief operating officer Subhan Ahmed told local media. Whatmore is expected to reach Pakistan in second week of next month, he added. Former opening batsman Mohsin Khan has been serving as interim coach and was retained for Pakistan’s series next month against England in the United Arab Emirates. The 57-year-old Whatmore, who played for Australia in the late 1970s and early 1980s, is regarded as one of the most successful coaches in international cricket, having guided Sri Lanka to the World Cup title in 1996. He subsequently enjoyed a successful coaching spell with Bangladesh and is currently in charge of the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League.
Kean gets bishop’s support
Under-fire Steve Kean received a Christmas message of support from the Bishop of Blackburn, who urged fans to get behind their beleaguered man in the hot seat as the club try to move off the bottom of the English Premier League. The Right Reverend Nicholas Reade called on supporters to show some compassion ahead of a tough Boxing Day fixture against Liverpool. “I would say please, always remember the human being, always remember that he’s part of a family — that other people will be suffering because people have got him in their sights,” the bishop told the BBC.
World Cup slalom canceled
Poor weather has caused the scheduled World Cup men’s and women’s slalom events in Munich on Jan. 1 to be canceled, the International Skiing Federation (FIS) announced on Sunday. The FIS said the weather would be too mild for the planned races, which would not be replaced this season. “Due to lack of snow, too warm temperatures, rain and no positive weather forecast, the event January 1 in Munich had to be canceled. It will not be replaced during this season,” the statement said.