28 Sep 2019

Today's sports news: what you need to know

7:35 pm on 28 September 2019

Latest - The first New Zealanders in action have just fallen short of advancing at the World Athletics Championships in Doha.

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Edward Osei-Nketia Photo: Alisha Lovrich

Commonwealth Games champion Julia Ratcliffe has recorded the 14th best throw in the women's hammer, with the top 12 progressing to the final, while teenage sprint sensation Edward Osei-Nketia has narrowly missed out on a place in the semi-finals of the men's 100 metres.

He's finished fifth in his heat, won by American Justin Gatlin, and his time of 10.24 seconds was just one one hundredth of a second outside a semi-final berth.

Controversial American sprinter Christian Coleman has justified his 100m favouritism with a dominant display in the opening round.

Coleman eased up well short of the line in the last of the six heats but still clocked 9.98 seconds, making him the only runner to break the 10-second mark.

Coleman missed three doping tests in the space of 12 months but avoided a one-year ban on a technicality, freeing him up to compete in the Qatari capital.

New Zealand paddler through to another semi-final

Luuka Jones has qualified for the semi-finals of the women's C1 at the world canoe slalom championships in Spain.

Luuka Jones in action in the heats of the women's C1 at the 2019 world canoe slalom championships in Spain.

Luuka Jones in action in the heats of the women's C1 at the world canoe slalom championships in Spain. Photo: ICF Media

She's recorded the fourth best run in the second run to advance to the top 30.

Jones earlier qualified for the semis of the women's K1.

New Zealand team-mate Jack Dangen has progressed to the semi-finals of the men's K1, but Callum Gilbert and Finn Butcher have missed out.

Two further three match bans at the RWC

Samoa hooker Motu Matu'u has been banned for three matches for his reckless high tackle in his side's opening Rugby World Cup match against Russia.

Samoa's hooker Motu Matu'u (L) is tackled by Russia's number 8 Nikita Vavilin during the Japan 2019 Rugby World Cup Pool A match between Russia and Samoa at the Kumagaya Rugby Stadium in Kumagaya on September 24, 2019. (Photo by William WEST / AFP)

Motu Matu'u Photo: AFP

Matu'u is currently going through the return to play protocols after sustaining a head knock in the collision and therefore will miss Samoa's final two pool matches and the quarter-final should Samoa progress.

USA flanker John Quill has also been handed a three match ban after he was red carded for a high tackle on England first-five Owen Farrell.

Quill will miss the USA's three remaining pool matches against France, Argentina and Tonga.

England player cited

England centre Piers Francis has been cited for a dangerous tackle in his side's 45-7 Rugby World Cup victory over the United States.

Samoa's Tim Nanai-Williams is tackled by England's Piers Francis.

Samoa's Tim Nanai-Williams is tackled by England's Piers Francis. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Francis was not sanctioned during the Pool C match in Kobe and was cited by World Rugby after the game that also had USA flanker John Quill sent off for a shoulder charge on England's Owen Farrell.

Francis is the fifth player to face the judiciary this week for dangerous tackles after World Rugby criticised the referees for inconsistency around their judgements in earlier games.

While referee Nic Berry opted not to review the tackle at the time, television replays showed Francis's shoulder appeared to catch the fullback on the jaw.

- Reuters

Record win for Tasman

The Tasman Mako have recorded their biggest ever win over Auckland in the national provincial rugby championship.

Tasman players celebrate Leicester Faingaanuka try during their Mitre 10 Cup Rugby match. Tasman Mako v Auckland. Trafalgar Park, Nelson, New Zealand. Friday 27 September 2019. ©Copyright Photo: Chris Symes / www.photosport.nz

Photo: Photosport Ltd 2019

The runaway premiership leaders have beaten last year's champions 40-0 in Nelson, scoring six unanswered tries.

It's Tasman's eighth straight win this season.

In other matches, Chase Tiatia bagged a hat-trick and Joe Ravouvou scored a brace as Bay of Plenty thumped previously unbeaten Hawke's Bay 51-24, running in eight tries to the Magpies' four.

Wellington consolidated second place on the premiership ladder with an eight-try 57-36 win over championship strugglers Northland. Captain Du'Plessis Kirifi and Pepesana Patafilo both scored a double in Wellington's sixth straight win, while Aorangi Stokes crossed for two of Northland's five tries.

In the women's competition for the Farah Palmer Cup, last year's winners Canterbury maintained their unbeaten run in the premiership with a 32-17 win over Counties Manukau in Pukekohe.

Wellington collected a valuable bonus point in their 59-31 win against Waikato, while Northland accounted for Taranaki 22-12 in Inglewood.

New Zealand men's football team remains unbeaten in Fiji

The New Zealand under-23 men's football team will take a perfect record in the semi-finals of the Oceania Olympic qualifying tournament in Fiji.

Goal scorer Myer Bevan in action for the All Whites

Myer Bevan Photo: Photosport

Des Buckingham's side has notched up a third win from three pool matches, coming from behind to see off a spirited Solomon Islands side 4-2.

They charged out of the blocks to take the lead in the opening minute, Patrick Taroga tapping home from close range to spark wild scenes of celebration from the Solomon players.

New Zealand soon began to exert their control on proceedings though and were 2-1 in front by the break, Clayton Lewis equalising with a fine strike from outside the box before Myer Bevan controlled a Lewis pass and hammered home.

Buckingham then had a two-goal cushion to play with soon after half-time when Noah Billingsley headed in a free kick but the Solomons refused to lie down and were back in the contest with just over ten minutes remaining, Tuita Maeobia arrowing a stunning effort into the top corner to make it 3-2.

Batram Suri's side would have hoped to press on from there and find an equaliser but it was New Zealand who struck next, Bevan calmly slotting home his eighth goal of the campaign in stoppage time to finally make sure of the points.

Tall Ferns to play for fifth at Asia Cup

The New Zealand women's basketball team has been beaten 58-52 by South Korea in their qualifying semi-final at the Asia Cup in India.

New Tall Ferns coach Guy Molloy.

New Tall Ferns coach Guy Molloy. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The loss means the Tall Ferns will face Chinese Taipei in the play-off for fifth/sixth today (Saturday).

The Tall Ferns scoring was headed by Penina Davidson (12 points and 6 rebounds) and teenager Charlisse Leger-Walker (10 points). Kalani Purcell had a fine all court game with 4 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals.

Tall Ferns head coach Guy Molloy was naturally disappointed with the result.

"Unfortunately we didn't get done what we came here to do which was to make the top four so we have to settle for the fifth/sixth play-off."

The green machine is returning to the NRL grand final

The Canberra Raiders are into their first NRL grand final in 25 years after beating South Sydney 16-10 in Canberra, despite being a man down for the final 10 minutes.

New Zealand fullback Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad was sin-binned for a professional foul in the 70th minute, but the Raiders rallied before Josh Papalii burst through to score the match-winning try in front of a record crowd at GIO Stadium.

Coach Ricky Stuart has taken Canberra to their first grand final since helping the Green Machine to their last premiership as a player in 1994.

The Raiders' season has been defined by defence and, for their biggest home crowd in club history, they again stood strong.

Three times in the first half, the Rabbitohs looked certain to score and were denied as the Canberra wall couldn't be penetrated.

The Raiders will face Melbourne or the Sydney Roosters in the grand final on Sunday week.


Fox just two shots off the lead in Scotland

New Zealand golfer Ryan Fox has carded another blemish-free round to be tied for fifth at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland.

He's signed for a four-under 68 in his second round to be 12-under par for the tournament, just two shots off the lead.

Fellow Kiwi Daniel Hillier has carded a two-under 70 in his second round to be tied for 110th place at three-under par.

It's just his second European Tour tournament since turning professional.

And 2005 US Open champion Michael Campbell is tied for 162nd at three-over par.

IOC to take a fresh look at Russia

International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach said that a fresh look might be needed at Russia's participation in next year's Tokyo Olympics after the World Anti-Doping Agency found inconsistencies in data supplied by the country.

WADA said on Monday it had opened compliance proceedings against Russia's Anti-Doping Agency after examining a vast bank of historical testing data finally handed over in January following a previous suspension.

That meant RUSADA was in danger of being declared non-compliant by WADA, possibly putting increased pressure on the IOC to exclude Russia from the Tokyo Games next year for failing to ensure that its athletes are clean.

"RUSADA has served its sanction for what happened... now, what we hear there maybe a new situation," Bach told reporters. "So, there has to be a fresh look at this."

Bach said he could not comment further while WADA carries out its investigation. "I cannot speculate or comment on the result of what this WADA procedure might be," he added.

- Reuters

England cricketer retires because of ongoing anxiety battle

England women's wicketkeeper-batsman Sarah Taylor has retired from international cricket because of her ongoing battle with anxiety.

Taylor, 30, made her England debut as a 17-year-old in 2006, and went to make 226 appearances. She scored 6,533 international runs to finish second on England women's all-time list of run-scorers, behind her long-term captain, Charlotte Edwards.

"This has been a tough decision but I know it's the right one, for me and for my health moving forward," Taylor said in a statement.

"I can't thank my team mates enough, both past and present, and the ECB for being supporters and friends along my journey.

"Playing for England and getting to wear the shirt for so long has been a dream come true and I have been blessed with so many great moments throughout my career."

- Reuters

Klusener to coach Afghanistan

Former South Africa all-rounder Lance Klusener will replace Phil Simmons as Afghanistan's new head coach of the men's cricket team.

The Afghanistan Cricket Board said they received more than 50 applications and picked Klusener who previously served as a bowling coach with Indian Premier League side Mumbai Indians and a batting coach with the South African Twenty20 team.

"I'm extremely excited and honoured to be given the opportunity," Klusener said via a statement.

"Everyone knows the fearless brand of cricket Afghanistan play.

"I'm very confident that with some hard work we can become one of the best sides in the world. I'm really looking forward to working with the Afghanistan team and helping them take their cricket to the next level."

Klusener's first series in charge of the side will be the three-match T20 series against West Indies which will be played in India in November.

- Reuters

Froome back racing

Four-time tour de France champion Chris Froome, who suffered a horror crash last June, will race in the Criterium de Saitama next month.

The Briton sustained broken leg, hip, ribs, vertebrae and elbow at the Criterium du Dauphine and was not expected to race again this year.

But the Team Ineos rider has been recovering faster than anticipated and he will line up with Tour de France winner Egan Bernal in the Oct. 27 semi-competitive event in Japan.

- Reuters