Malky Mackay told to quit
Cardiff City manager Malky Mackay is reportedly on the verge of leaving the Premier League club after being told to resign or face being sacked by Malaysian owner Vincent Tan. Mackay was severely rebuked by Tan earlier this week after angering the club’s supremo by asking to sign at least three players during next month’s transfer window. The 41-year-old was told by Tan that he would not get any new funds because he had already been handed a significant transfer kitty following Cardiff’s promotion from the Championship last season. Mackay responded by insisting he would not resign, but the BBC reported on Thursday that Tan sent the former Watford boss a letter by e-mail on Monday outlining his grievances at length. Tan is said to have criticized Mackay’s transfer signings, style of play and results, before demanding he resign or be sacked. Mackay’s position has been under scrutiny since Tan removed his head of recruitment Iain Moody in October amid suggestions of an overspend in the summer transfer window.
Williams to switch again
World Cup winner Sonny Bill Williams will return to New Zealand to switch codes again in 2015 in a bid to win another Webb Ellis trophy plus a gold medal in the rugby sevens at the 2016 Rio Olympics. The 28-year-old is to play for rugby league’s Sydney Roosters, the club he helped to Australia’s National Rugby League title last season, next year, before rejoining the Waikato Chiefs on a two-year contract. “We made no secret we were keen to get Sonny back in a Chiefs jersey,” Waikato coach Dave Rennie said in a statement. “He’s not only a quality player, but adds huge value to our environment off the field.” The player spent two years in New Zealand, helping the All Blacks to the 2011 World Cup and the Chiefs to their inaugural Super Rugby title last year. The Hamilton-based franchise retained their crown this year without Williams, who had left New Zealand to take up a short-term contract in Japan, before switching codes back to rugby league.
Bryant out for six weeks
Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant has a broken bone in his left knee and is expected to miss six weeks, the NBA team said on Thursday. “You hate it for Kobe,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said in remarks posted on the team’s Twitter feed. “He’s worked so hard to get back.” Bryant missed the first 19 games of the season as he continued to recover from surgery to repair a torn left Achilles tendon suffered in April. He had played just six games and averaged 13.8 points. Bryant was injured on Tuesday in the third quarter of a 96-92 win over Memphis.
Beltran, Yankees strike deal
Outfielder Carlos Beltran and the New York Yankees have finalized a US$45 million, three-year contract. The agreement, reached on Dec. 6, was announced by the team on Thursday. The eight-time All-Star was to be introduced at a Yankee Stadium press conference yesterday. The 36-year-old played for the Mets from 2005 to 2011, when he was dealt to San Francisco. He signed a US$26 million, two-year contract with St Louis last year and reached the World Series for the first time this year. Slowed by knee injuries, Beltran has retained a potent bat — especially in October. He hit .296 with 24 homers and 84 RBIs for the Cardinals this year and added two homers and 15 RBIs in the post-season.
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
’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.
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
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