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.
Chen Jifang hits the gym for at least two hours every day and has the physique to prove it. At nearly 70, she is being held up as a shining example as China orders its vast population to get fit and lose the bulge. The grandmother from Shanghai has become a minor celebrity in in the past few months after her newfound and unlikely love for working out made national headlines. After becoming a gym regular in December 2018, Chen lost 14kg in three months, and now sports the kind of flat stomach and toned muscles that people decades younger aspire to. She
ANOTHER SCANDAL: Searches focused on several riders, including Dayer Quintana, a source said, while the two being held were reportedly a doctor and physiotherapist French police on Monday detained two people as part of an investigation into suspected doping in the Arkea-Samsic team at this year’s Tour de France, prosecutors announced. The probe is the first significant one in several years for the repeatedly scandal-hit tour, which on Sunday wrapped up in Paris with a victory for 21-year-old Tadej Pogacar, who became the youngest winner in more than a century. Prosecutor Dominique Laurens in Marseille said in a statement that an investigation was being carried out into a “small part” of France-based Arkea-Samsic, without specifying who had been placed in custody. Laurens added that the two
’SO CONSISTENT’: The victory gave the world No. 1 and world No. 2 a 21-1 win-loss record and their fourth title of the season after successes in Brisbane, Dubai and Doha Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic on Sunday cruised to their fourth women’s doubles title of the season at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome in their first tournament back since the suspension of the WTA Tour due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The top seeds took just 63 minutes to complete a comprehensive 6-2, 6-2 victory over unseeded German-Romanian duo Anna-Lena Friedsam and Raluca Olaru at the Foro Italico. It was the Taiwanese-Czech pairing’s first outing since they won the Qatar Open in February. “After five months, you don’t know what to expect,” Strycova told the WTA Web site.
Former MLB pitcher Wang Wei-chung has signed the biggest contract with a local team in Taiwan’s professional baseball history, the Wei Chuan Dragons said yesterday. The 28-year-old left-hander signed a five-year US$2.08 million contract with the Dragons, team chairman Hsu Wen-fang told a news conference. It is the biggest contract in the CPBL’s 31-year history, surpassing a three-year, US$1.36 million deal Lin Chih-sheng signed in 2016 with the CTBC Brothers. Although the overall value of Wang’s deal set a new record, his average monthly salary of NT$990,000 (US$33,886) is lower than Lin’s pay of NT$1.2 million per month in 2017