27 Apr 2019

Today's sports news: What you need to know

7:14 pm on 27 April 2019

A strong performance from Black Caps all-rounder Mitchell Santner has been unable to prevent Chennai from defeat to Mumbai in cricket's Indian Premier League.

Mitchell Santner has some post match fun with Chennai Super Kings team-mate Ravindra Jadeja.

Mitchell Santner has some post match fun with Chennai Super Kings team-mate Ravindra Jadeja. Photo: SPORTZPICS/Photosport

Visiting Mumbai posted 155-4 before bowling the home side out for just 109 to win by 46 runs in Chennai on Saturday (NZ time).

But it wasn't for lack of effort from Santner.

The New Zealand left arm spinner returned superb figures of 2-13 from his four overs, taking the wickets of Mumbai's two top scorers, removing Rohit Sharma for 67 and Evin Lewis for 32.

The Super Kings were already struggling when Santner came to the crease at 66-6 in the 12th over but he did his best to keep hopes alive with two sixes in his 22 runs off 20 balls.

Veteran Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga was superb with the ball for Mumbai, pikcing up four wickets as the Indians recorded their second win over Chennai this season.

- RNZ, with AAP

Kiwi forward boosts Bulldogs

A standout performance from New Zealand forward Corey Harawira-Naera has helped the Bulldogs pull themselves off the bottom of the ladder in the NRL.

Panthers players swamp Corey Harawira-Naera after he crosses for a try.

Panthers players swamp Corey Harawira-Naera after he crosses for a try. Photo: Photosport

Harawira-Naera scored two tries for the home side to led them to a 24-12 win over the Cowboys in Sydney on Friday night.

That second-half double proved the difference as Canterbury provisionally lifted themselves off the bottom of the ladder and showed up their more fancied opponents, even without key men Dylan Napa and Kieran Foran.

On both tries Harawira-Naera ran lovely lines to split the Cowboys' defence before he pulled off a try-saver on opposite back-rower Gavin Cooper to stop a potential North Queensland fightback dead in its tracks.

Meanwhile, already having lost Phil Gould, the Panthers are in danger of losing sight of the top four after slumping to a 22-18 defeat to South Sydney.

Six months after turning their back on Wayne Bennett in favour of Ivan Cleary, the Panthers were staring at a 10-0 deficit at halftime.

However, Cleary's men fought back and got within two, only for the Rabbitohs to come up with the clutch plays when it mattered.

Penrith had a couple of chances to steal the win, however were left to rue a fifth loss from their opening seven matches of the season.

It comes at the end of an emotional week due to the shock exit of the man who single-handedly saved the club from insolvency in Gould.

The premiership-winning coach, who was given a standing ovation by some fans during a tribute pre-game, watched from the stands at Panthers Stadium.

For the Rabbitohs, the two points ensures they keep pace with ladder leaders the Sydney Roosters and Melbourne.


Durant makes history as Warriors oust Clippers

Kevin Durant matched the most points scored in the first half of an NBA playoff game, leading the visiting Golden State Warriors to a series-clinching 129-110 win against the Los Angeles Clippers in game six of their Western Conference first-round matchup.

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant Photo: Photosport

Durant scored 38 of his playoff career-high 50 points in the first half, matching Charles Barkley, who scored 38 of his 56 points in the first half 25 years earlier to help the Phoenix Suns finish off a first-round sweep of the Warriors.

The Warriors advance to face the Houston Rockets, beginning on Sunday in Oakland. Houston flew to the Bay Area on Friday in advance of the possible Sunday matchup.

Draymond Green had 16 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists, Stephen Curry scored 24 points and Andre Iguodala contributed 15 points off the bench for the Warriors, who won three road playoff games in the same series for first time in franchise history.

The Clippers got as close as 12 in the first five minutes of the third quarter, but the Warriors pushed the lead back to 102-78 entering the fourth and kept the lead at double digits the rest of the way.


City with chance to jump Phoenix

Melbourne City coach Warren Joyce is unrepentant after valuing the club's form over a possible home A-League final next weekend.

Melbourne City FC players during the Hyundai A-League, Wellington Phoenix vs Melbourne City.

Melbourne City players celebrate. Photo: Photosport

City put Central Coast to the sword on Friday night, demolishing the last-place finishers 5-0 as they tuned up for another finals series.

The only problem was, it could deny them the chance to return to AAMI Park next week.

City, in sixth, were on track to play third-place finishers Melbourne Victory in their elimination final until the 5-0 belting.

Now, should Perth Glory defeat Wellington by two goals on Sunday, City will jump Phoenix on the table and instead head to Adelaide United.

Joyce said it never entered his mind that his team should play with one arm behind their back, or let up the gas.


Bolton boycott threat forces cancellation

Bolton Wanderers' Championship match at home to Brentford on Saturday has been called off, the EFL said.

The announcement followed a statement from the players of the already relegated team confirming that they had decided to boycott the remaining league fixtures over unpaid wages.

The squad went on strike this month and refused to report for training until players, coaches and the club's non-football staff were paid March's wages.

"As a result of these disappointing developments, the League has been forced to suspend Saturday's fixture and under EFL regulations, the club is now deemed to be guilty of misconduct and will be referred to an independent disciplinary commission," the EFL said in a statement.

"The EFL Board will now consider the matter of determining whether the fixture will be played or not."

A Football League founder member in 1888, Bolton won the FA Cup three times in the 1920s and in 1958 but have struggled in recent years after relegation from the Premier League in 2012.

"The long-running financial crisis at our club has been well documented. As has the fact that we, the playing staff have yet to receive our March salaries," a players' statement read as quoted by BBC.

"We have endeavoured to continue our training and playing commitments during this extremely difficult time, with seemingly no resolution in sight.

"With deep regret we have decided not to fulfil our remaining fixtures unless we are paid."

The Professional Footballers' Association (PFA), which gave Bolton a loan to cover players' salaries in December, supported the action.

- Reuters

Nadal, Osaka march on

Eleven-times champion Rafael Nadal has booked his place in the semi-finals of the Barcelona Open by beating German Jan-Lennard Struff 7-5 7-5 in a hard-fought encounter.

The world number two will meet either Dominic Thiem or Guido Pella in the last four.

Struff, ranked 51st in the world and a renowned doubles player, had impressed in Barcelona by knocking out 10th seed David Goffin and last year's runner up Stefanos Tsitsipas and was facing Nadal for the first time in a competitive match.

"Me and my coaches knew he (Struff) was going to play aggressively, it was one of those matches where every point counts, he put me under a lot of pressure so I had to play through that but my serve was solid throughout," Nadal said.

Japan's Kei Nishikori also made it into the last four after seeing off Roberto Carballes Baena 6-4 7-5 and will face Russian Daniil Medvedev, who ended Chilean Nicolas Jarry's tournament with a comfortable 6-3 6-4 victory.

Meanwhile women's world No 1 Naomi Osaka has come from behind in the final set to beat Croatian Donna Vekic 6-3 4-6 7-6 (7-4) and move into the Porsche Tennis Grand Prix semi-finals in Stuttgart.

2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka.

2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka. Photo: ©Icon Sportswire (A Division of XML Team Solutions) All Rights Reserved

Osaka comfortably won the opening set but was tested by the Croatian, who pushed her to the limit in the second and third. The Japanese made 45 unforced errors as she struggled to get to grips with swapping hard courts for clay.

Osaka was visibly frustrated and trailed 5-1 in the final set but refused to give up and found her rhythm to break Vekic twice and prevent her from serving for the match.

In the tiebreaker, a confident Osaka upped her baseline game and had two early mini breaks before wrapping up the match in two hours and 18 minutes.

Earlier, world No 3 Petra Kvitova came back from a set down to beat Anastasija Sevastova 2-6 6-2 6-3 and move into the last four for the third time in her career.

- Reuters