Sat, Oct 27, 2018 - Page 16 News List

SPORTS BRIEFS

Agencies

E-SPORTS

Jordan invests in aXiomatic

NBA icon Michael Jordan is branching out into e-sports, investing in the parent company of Team Liquid, aXiomatic. Jordan was one of two new investors announced on Thursday by aXiomatic, along with Declaration Capital, the family office of Washington-based billionaire David Rubenstein. According to Forbes, the investments were part of a US$26 million funding round. “I’m excited to expand my sports equity portfolio through my investment in aXiomatic. E-sports is a fast-growing, international industry and I’m glad to partner with this great group of investors,” said Jordan, who joined his fellow Dream Team teammate Magic Johnson as an aXiomatic investor, as is Ted Leonsis, owner of the NBA’s Washington Wizards and the NHL champions Washington Capitals. “The next generation of sports fans are e-sports fans,” Leonsis told ESPN in a statement. In 2016, aXiomatic acquired a majority stake in Team Liquid, one of the oldest and most popular teams in e-sports with more than 60 competitive gamers based out of Los Angeles and the Netherlands.

FOOTBALL

Official fired over failed call

An NFL official has been fired for poor performance. Down judge Hugo Cruz was on the officiating crew in Week 6 when the Los Angeles Chargers played the Browns in Cleveland. Cruz failed to call a false start on Chargers left tackle Russell Okung, and while the Browns’ defenders expected the play to be whistled dead, Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers completed a 29-yard touchdown pass to Tyrell Williams. According to FootballZebras.com, he is the first official fired during the season for performance issues in the Super Bowl era.

SOCCER

Late substitute ban mulled

The International Football Association Board is keen to clamp down on time-wasting tactics, with a ban on injury-time substitutions one of the areas being considered to increase actual playing time, the Times reported yesterday. The board has observed that changes are being made after 90 minutes in one-quarter of English Premier League matches. “A rule to say there should be no substitutions during added-on time is an interesting one and could work well. Referees add on 30 seconds for a substitution, but in practice it can eat up a lot more time than that,” it said. The average playing time for a Premier League match is 55 minutes, 9 seconds this season, while Cardiff City’s clash against Burnley saw just more than 42 minutes of game time.

SOCCER

Women’s prize to double

FIFA president Gianni Infantino understands why female players are unhappy about the lack of gender equality in World Cup prize money, but on Thursday said that doubling the cash for finalists to US$30 million represents significant progress. Ahead of the FIFA Council yesterday ratifying the financial package for next year’s Women’s World Cup, players’ unions in Australia, Norway, Sweden and New Zealand wrote to FIFA to raise concerns about why there is vastly more cash set aside for the men’s tournament. France earned US$38 million for winning the men’s World Cup in July. A person with knowledge of the figures said the women’s champions next year are to earn US$4 million, which is twice the amount collected by the Americans in 2015.

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