5 Jan 2020

Today's sports news: what you need to know

11:33 am on 5 January 2020

Latest - The Auckland Tuatara are closing in on a second-straight home series sweep in a record-breaking Australian Baseball League season.

Johny Homza

Jonny Homza Photo: Photosport

The Tuatara lead the series against Geelong-Korea 3-0 with the final game starting at 1pm in Albany.

With Saturday's 9-7 win, the Tuatara have surpassed their total number of wins from last year with 13 regular-season games still remaining.

The Tuatara have now won 10 straight games at the North Harbour Stadium in their second season in the ABL and are leading the Northwest division.

Injury to striker in Phoenix win

There is an injury concern for Wellington Phoenix striker David Ball following the Phoenix's 2-1 win against visiting Central Coast Mariners.

Wellington Phoenix player David Ball.

David Ball Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Marquee player Gary Hooper, making his second start of the season, scored the Phoenix's opening goal before fellow Englishman Ball slotted home to double the lead just before the half hour mark.

The first half ended with the Phoenix up 2-1 but the second half begun on a sour note, with Ball pulling up lame with a hip injury.

Phoenix coach Ufuk Talay said he is unsure how long Ball will be side-lined.

The fourth-placed Phoenix stay at home for the next A-League round, taking on Western Sydney Wanderers on 11 January, in what will be a chance to equal a club record for unbeaten games in a row.

Champion Indian cricketer retires

Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan announced his retirement from cricket, bringing the curtain down on a career which included a World Twenty20 triumph.

The 35-year-old left-arm seamer played 29 tests, 120 one dayers and 24 T20Is for India, picking a total of 301 international wickets.

Pathan's biggest contribution to Indian cricket came in the game's shortest format as he was named man-of-the-match in the World T20 final against Pakistan in 2007. He took three crucial wickets as India lifted the trophy in Johannesburg.

He is one of three Indian bowlers to have claimed a test hat-trick and the first in the world to claim it in the first over of the match.

Pathan last played for India during the World T20 in 2012, but featured regularly in the domestic circuit.

- Reuters

Breakers dedicate season to manager

The New Zealand Breakers have dedicated the remainder of their Australian National Basketball League season to team manager Fata Letoa.

Letoa died on Friday.

"Fata was truly at the heart of our Breakers family. He saw the best in all of us and embodied everything it means to be a Breaker. A coach, a mentor, a father and a friend," the club said in a social media post.

The Breakers play South East Melbourne Phoenix today, tip off at 5pm, in their first game of the new year.

Both clubs have an eight win, 10 loss record and are trying to get into the top four for play-offs.

The Breakers have pledged $1000 for every three-point shot they score during today's game to the Red Cross Bushfire appeal.