Moreno beats Urina
Anselmo Moreno scored a unanimous decision over William Urina on Saturday in Panama City to defend his WBA bantamweight title for the 11th time. The three judges scored the match 116-112, 118-110 and 118-110 for the Panamanian fighter. “This is the result of hard work in the gym and the hard work of my trainers,” Moreno said. “Urina is a heavy-hitting opponent, but tonight in the ring my physical condition was better.” Moreno received a cut on the right cheek that caused him to bleed after the seventh round, but the 28-year-old landed better shots and avoided most of Urina’s punches. “It’s hard to fight Moreno, even more so at home,” Urina said. Moreno improved 34-2-1. Urina fell to 24-3. Urina launched one of his few successful attacks in the ninth round, connecting with a left hook to the face, but the 27-year-old Colombian could not follow up with significant additional punches.
Discus thrower injured
Discus thrower Natalia Semenova of Ukraine was injured in qualifying on Saturday at the world championships in Moscow in a freak accident. Semenova was sitting on the bench in the infield when Zaneta Glanc of Poland spread her arms and imitated a throwing motion while holding the disc in her hand and hit Semenova on the nose. Semenova’s coach said the athlete’s nose may have been broken, but there was no immediate word from the Ukrainian team on the severity of the injury. She made one throw of 55.79m, but failed to reach yesterday’s final.
Chiefs offer Williams deal
The New Zealand Rugby Union says it has made an offer to code-swapping star Sonny Bill Williams to return to the Super 15 champion Waikato Chiefs next year. New Zealand media reports that the union has offered Williams a three-year deal that would see him return to rugby union next season and extend his 19-test All Blacks career. Chief executive Steve Tew confirmed the union had made the offer, saying: “The dialogue has been positive, but we don’t have any ink on paper.” Williams switched from rugby league to rugby union in 2008 and became an All Black in 2010. He returned to rugby league earlier this year, playing for the Sydney Roosters.
Crotty in All Blacks
Canterbury Crusaders center Ryan Crotty was rushed into the All Blacks squad yesterday as injury cover less than a week from their opening Rugby Championship game against Australia in Sydney. The uncapped Crotty will cover for Francis Saili, who suffered an ankle strain during an All Blacks’ practice match in Wellington on Friday and is out of action for at least a week, the New Zealand Rugby Union said in a statement. The 22-year-old Saili was one of three players selected to train with the All Blacks, but were outside the Rugby Championship traveling squad. Crotty will fill the same role in training this week. However, the statement was unclear whether he would also travel to Sydney given other injuries within the squad, particularly to Ma’a Nonu, who is also nursing an ankle problem. Crotty was called into the squad ahead of Rene Ranger, who made himself unavailable for the All Blacks ahead of his departure for France, but said he could play in an emergency.