Watts denies biting penis
Gold Coast Rugby League player Anthony Watts has denied biting an opponent’s penis during a tackle in a league game earlier this month. Watts, a former player in Australia’s top-flight National Rugby League (NRL), was handed an eight-match ban following a video review of the incident in a match two weeks ago. Footage of the match posted on YouTube showed the Tugun Seahawks utility pulled down in a tackle near the tryline and subsequently becoming involved in a melee with remonstrating players from the Bilambil Jets team. “I was wearing a mouthguard and there’s no way I bit him on the dick,” Watts told Sydney’s Daily Telegraph newspaper. Watts was handed the ban after being found guilty of “contrary conduct” by the Gold Coast Rugby League last week. Dumped by NRL team Sydney Roosters in 2011 for disciplinary problems, Watts was sentenced to community service in June for being involved in a brawl between rival motorcycle gangs on the Gold Coast. That followed a conviction on a weapons charge after he was found carrying knuckle-dusters. Watts said he was victimized as a former NRL player and the ban was an attempt to drive him out of the game.
No apology necessary: PM
British Prime Minister David Cameron has told Manu Tuilagi an apology is not necessary for pranking him during a visit by the victorious British and Irish Lions. Tuilagi gave Cameron “bunny ears” while a photograph was taken of the rugby squad and the prime minister during a function at Downing Street on Monday to celebrate the series win over Australia. The Lions center apologized to Cameron on Twitter, then was ordered by his Leicester club to write a more formal apology. However, Cameron tweeted on Tuesday: “(at)manutuilagi it was great to welcome you and the (at)lionsofficial team to No10. No need to apologise, I know it was just a bit of fun.” England Rugby Football Union chief executive Ian Ritchie says coach Stuart Lancaster will have words with Tuilagi.
Del Piero to captain Sydney
Alessandro del Piero was yesterday appointed captain of Australian club Sydney FC for the upcoming season, with the Italian superstar calling it a great honor. The former Juventus great, the biggest signing in Australia’s domestic league history, has played a major role in increasing attendances, TV audiences and media interest in the domestic A-League and has signed on for a second season. As a reward, he will captain Sydney during the 2013-2014 season that gets under way next month, replacing Terry McFlynn. “This is a great honor for me to be given the captaincy of one of Australia and Asia’s biggest clubs,” Del Piero said. Del Piero is no stranger to being skipper, having captained Juventus for 11 years. He also skippered the national side.
Blunder loses AmaZulu lead
A blunder by Zimbabwe goalkeeper Tapuwa Kapini prevented AmaZulu going top of the South African Premiership on Tuesday as they drew 1-1 at Wits University. Experienced Kapini lost possession in his goalmouth while wasting time and Ethiopia World Cup star Getaneh Kebede pounced for a 92nd-minute equalizer. A win for Durban-based AmaZulu would have taken them two points clear of SuperSport United, but they had to settle for second place on goal difference. Nkosinathi Mthiyane had defied being the shortest soccer player on the Milpark Stadium pitch in Johannesburg to nod the visitors ahead after 65 minutes.