SPORTS BRIEFS

Agencies

Sun, Jun 30, 2013 - Page 18

BASKETBALL

Lin promotes Taipei game

Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin greeted his fans in Taiwan via video on Friday to promote an NBA exhibition game to be played in Taipei in October as part of the NBA Global Games series. “I’m excited to come back to Taiwan with my team this October for a game against the Indiana Pacers. You have the reputation of being some of the most enthusiastic NBA fans in the world. I’m personally looking forward to seeing you on Oct. 13 and bringing you an unforgettable game,” Lin said. The game will be held at the Taipei Arena and tickets for the contest were due to go on sale yesterday.

SOCCER

Hosts reach knockout phase

Turkey rallied to beat Australia 2-1 in their final Group C match at the Under-20 World Cup on Friday to join group winners Colombia in the knockout stage. The hosts will play France in the round of 16 on Tuesday. Australia failed to go beyond the group stage for a fourth straight time. Colombia won the group after defeating El Salvador 3-0. Earlier on Friday, Greece and Paraguay drew 1-1 in their final Group D match, which was enough for both teams to advance to the first knockout round. In the other Group D match, Mexico bounced back from losing their opening two matches and defeated Mali 4-1. Mexico finished third to leave themselves a chance of also reaching the last 16, while Mali were eliminated.

CRICKET

Butt admits spot-fixing

Former Pakistan captain Salman Butt admitted on Friday to cheating on his country’s tour of England in 2010 and said he would like to play domestic cricket once his ban for spot-fixing is completed. Butt and bowlers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir were banned by the International Cricket Council for spot-fixing in the Lord’s Test. Butt had previously denied the charges. “Today I want to apologize to all my countrymen and cricket followers all over the world for having done wrong,” he told reporters in Lahore. “I am sorry for having hurt the sentiments of the Pakistani people and cricket lovers. I am ready to undergo any rehabilitation program.” Butt, who received a 10-year ban, five years of which were suspended, added: “I just want to at least get the chance to play domestic cricket once my ban is completed.”

CRICKET

Watson denies Warner role

Shane Watson has denied any role in forcing Australia cricket chiefs to take action against David Warner for the opener’s attack on England’s Joe Root. Earlier this month, Warner was fined and suspended by Cricket Australia after punching Root in a Birmingham bar following Australia’s Champions Trophy loss to their arch-rivals. Following Warner’s suspension, there were reports in the Australian media that officials had only decided to discipline Warner after Watson had complained about double standards. Watson was one of four players dropped from the Test side in India earlier this year for failing to hand in a written feedback requested by team management. Watson told the Cricinfo Web site on Friday that he had not done anything to make officials suspend Warner. “Absolutely not,” Watson said when asked if he had informed former coach Mickey Arthur of the events in Birmingham. “In the end, the coaching staff and Mickey and the leadership group found out about Dave’s incident off their own bat. It had absolutely nothing to do with me in any way shape or form and I’m not sure why that was brought out in the media because it certainly wasn’t the truth.”