10 Apr 2019

Today's sports news: What you need to know

9:44 am on 10 April 2019

Latest - The Warriors have avoided a crisis at hooker with Jazz Tevaga free to play South Sydney on Saturday after successfully challenging a dangerous tackle charge on Gold Coast prop Shannon Boyd at the NRL judiciary.

Warriors player Jazz Tevaga

Warriors player Jazz Tevaga Photo: Photosport

Tevaga, the NRL's inaugural Dally M utility of the year in 2018, faced a one-match ban if he accepted an early guilty plea, but instead beat the charge last night.

However, Melbourne winger Suliasi Vunivalu will miss Friday night's 2017 grand final rematch with North Queensland after copping a one-game ban for pulling Nick Meaney's leg in the Storm's weekend win over Canterbury on Sunday.

After also submitting an early guilty plea, Brisbane strike forward Tevita Pangai Jnr was formally outed for two matches for a late shot on Sydney Roosters playmaker Cooper Cronk.

Manly forward Joel Thompson was fined $1900 for tripping Corey Allan in the Sea Eagles' golden-point win over the Rabbitohs on Saturday.

Football Ferns edge Norway

New Zealand footballer Rosie White.

New Zealand footballer Rosie White. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The Football Ferns have beaten World No 12 Norway 1-0 this morning in Spain to claim their first win over the Scandinavians in 38 years.

The result means the teams split the two match series 1-1, as they continue their build-up for the Women's World Cup in France in June.

It's the first time New Zealand, the world number 19 side, have beaten Norway since 1981 and only second time in seven A internationals.

It's also first time the New Zealand women have beaten a higher ranked opposition in three years.

Japan captain Leitch hits out at Sunwolves dumping

Japan, led by captain Michael Leitch, thank the crowd after the match against All Blacks.

Japan captain Michael Leitch. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Japan captain Michael Leitch has accused some top tier nations of wanting to keep high level rugby to themselves after the Sunwolves were told they'd be cut from Super Rugby after the 2020 season.

The decision by organiser SANZAAR to revert to a purely southern hemisphere Super Rugby competition was a major blow for Japan and those who champion the growth of the game, as the nation prepares to showcase its development as hosts of the World Cup.

Leitch, who hasn't featured for the Sunwolves this season due to commitments with the national team, believes this is a mistake and that exposure to higher levels of competition is the only way to grow the sport he loves.


Sale prop banned for drugs

England rugby have banned Sale Sharks prop Jake Pope for six months following a second violation of their Illicit Drugs Programme.

The RFU said Pope was the first player to have breached the policy for a second time after a drug test in November returned an adverse analytical finding for cannabis and cocaine.

He admitted the violation at an independent disciplinary panel hearing in February, and the ban has been backdated to the day of his provisional suspension on Dec. 4, paving the way for a return in June.

Pope previously admitted a first violation following a test in 2017 and was fined $2000 although the RFU did not make their finding public as it was a first-time offence.


Rebels' Meakes escapes ban for high and late tackle

Melbourne centre Billy Meakes has escaped suspension for foul play in the Rebels' Super Rugby win over the Sunwolves last Saturday night.

Meakes had to answer via video conference to the SANZAAR Foul Play Review Committee following a second-half tackle on Sunwolves centre Jason Emery.

The Wallabies hopeful wasn't penalised for the 66th-minute tackle at the time before being found to have allegedly contravened Law 9.13: "A player must not tackle an opponent early, late or dangerously."

But, despite upholding the charge, the three-man panel of De Wet Barry, Chris Smith and chairman Michael Heron QC deemed a warning as sufficient punishment for Meakes.

The reprieve frees up Meakes to play against the Stormers on Friday night.


Argentina's football coach Lionel Scaloni has been released from hospital in Mallorca after being hit by a car while riding his bicycle.

Spanish newspaper El Mundo said that Scaloni, who was named Argentina's permanent coach in November, was taken to the Hospital Universitario Son Espases on the Spanish island with multiple injuries.

Scaloni will oversee the team's Copa America campaign this year, with Argentina bidding to win their first major trophy since 1993.

He became assistant to Jorge Sampaoli at La Liga outfit Sevilla in 2016 and followed him when he became coach of Argentina in 2017.

Sampaoli was sacked in the wake of the side's disastrous 2018 World Cup campaign and their last-16 defeat to France, but Scaloni stayed on as caretaker coach before being handed the job on a permanent basis in November.