Real Betis win at Getafe
A wonderful free kick from Benat Extebarria helped fire Real Betis to a 4-2 victory at Getafe on Monday that lifted them up to fourth in La Liga. Jorge Molina put the visitors in front after a well-worked passing move in the 59th minute, only for Getafe to quickly equalize through Diego Castro. Midfielder Benat, on the fringes of Vicente del Bosque’s Spain team, restored the Betis lead with a curling free-kick into the top corner from wide of the area in the 74th. Two minutes later striker Ruben Castro sprinted clear following a counter-attack to put Betis 3-1 up. Getafe pulled one back through Pedro Leon with a minute to go, but as the hosts poured forward looking for the equalizer, Betis broke away and Salva Sevilla netted the decider. Betis are fourth with 19 points from 10 games.
Pair draw flop warnings
Minnesota’s J.J. Barea and Cleveland’s Donald Sloan were named on Monday as the first NBA players to draw warnings from the league under a new anti-flopping rule. Both incidents of flopping — where a player exaggerates slight contact to convince an official he has been fouled — took place in games on Friday. Barea exaggerated the impact of receiving a forearm to the face from Sacramento’s Jimmer Fredette in Minnesota’s victory over the Kings, by throwing his arms in the air and stumbling backwards. Sloan tangled legs with Chicago’s Nazr Mohammed before spinning around and tumbling to the court with his arms raised. First-time offenders under the new rule are given only a warning, but a second flop brings a US$5,000 fine. A third violation leads to a US$10,000 fine followed by US$15,000 for the fourth flop and US$30,000 for a fifth. After that any further flops could lead to a suspension.
Spanish star joins Johor
Former Spain striker Daniel Guiza has signed a contract with wealthy Malaysian state club Johor, an official said yesterday, in one of the country’s biggest transfer deals. Johor Football Association secretary Suhairi Hashim said that the 32-year-old had signed a one-year contract. He declined to say how much Guiza cost but added that his market value was ￡2 million (US$3.2 million). “We have a massive budget for the team this year to develop football in Johor. For sure, it is one of the biggest soccer transfer deals in the country,” Suhairi said. Guiza was top scorer in La Liga for Real Mallorca four years ago before going on to help Spain win Euro 2008. He has scored six goals in 21 internationals for Spain. Johor have embarked on a buying spree and Suhairi said at least eight internationals would be joining his club.
Refugee helps Aussies
Australia yesterday used the leg-spin bowling of a Pakistani asylum seeker in their first net session ahead of this week’s first Test against South Africa in Brisbane. Fawad Ahmed, who is awaiting a decision from the Australian government about his refugee protection claim, bowled against Australia’s top batsmen as a preparation for South African spinner Imran Tahir ahead of Friday’s Gabba Test. Ahmed, who plays Melbourne club cricket, was flown to Brisbane because he has a similar bowling action to Pakistan-born Tahir, team officials said. Ahmed is familiar with Tahir, having played against him in Pakistan. He left his home in the border region near Afghanistan to come to Australia on a short-stay visa to play cricket in 2010.