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Monday, October 9, 2017 - 11
The New Zealand Breakers have
started this year’s Australian NBL
season on a sour note, falling 82-71 to
Cairns Taipans in Auckland.
Despite patches of dominance and
a star turn from swingman Tom
Abercrombie, the New Zealanders
struggled with their combinations and
made too many shooting errors.
Leading at the break, they managed
to shoot at just 41% accuracy from the
field and missed almost half of their free
Cairns were only partly better, shooting
at 46% from the field, but rode a third-
quarter hot streak of 25 points to victory.
The win maintains the Q ueenslanders’
perfect start, having beaten Illawarra on
Friday, and sends them into Thursday ’s
clash with Adelaide in high spirits.
New Zealand, meanwhile, will play
Sydney Kings on Friday.
“There were a few unforced errors that
just come with a lack of sharpness, and
that comes with playing games,” coach
Paul Henare said.
“ We’ll learn a lot from this — just in
terms of the match fitness, the guys will
be a little bit sharper moving for ward.
“ We definitely don’t need to reinvent
the wheel. ”
Fresh off an encouraging four-and-two
pre-season, Henare’s troops appeared
disjointed in yesterday’s opening stages
and were let down by bouts of ill-
discipline and poor shooting on both
sides of the three-point line.
Nevertheless, they took a 21-18 lead
into quarter-time and rode out an
extended period of the second-quarter
yips to lead 43-39 at the break — thanks
in part to the hot run of Abercrombie,
who scored 16 points.
By the end of the match, the Breakers’
star man racked up 24 points, while
imports Edgar Sosa and D J Newbill
both hit double figures.
Yet the Taipans unleashed in the third
Emerging from the sheds possessed,
Cairns put on their dominant 25-point
tally, helped by strong showings from
Dayshon Smith and Stephen Weigh.
For the Breakers, it proved an obstacle
too difficult to surmount.
“ We just didn’t convert plays — we
went to the foul line and we missed
several free throws in that second half,
weren’t converting plays at the rim for
whatever reason, and the scoring dried
up,” Henare said.
“That ’s what Cairns force you to do
and then they grind you down at the
other end, and we just weren’t able to get
any momentum.” — NZN
PICTURE: Getty Images
Kirk Penney of the Breakers in action against the Cairns Taipans.
The West Coast under-13 girls’ hockey
development team head to Christchurch
today for their most important and final
tournament of the season.
Festival of Hockey tournaments have
been held for a number of years to cater
for development teams and A teams that
miss out on going to Hatch Cup and
Collier Trophy tournaments.
This is the first time since 2012 West
Coast have entered a development team
so the challenge for positions in the A
team next season is sure to be contested.
Thirteen teams have entered, with
North Otago A looking to be a real
threat to West Coast Development and
their first opposition in pool B tomorrow
Further games are against Invercargill
Development, Canterbury Development
on Wednesday and South Canterbury
under-13 B on Thursday morning.
Crossover grading games will complete
the tournament on Thursday afternoon.
The West Coast team is: Kala Collins,
Rhea Wallace, captain Phoebe Marris,
Raphaela Roper, Dianie Pieterse, Milan
Jamieson, Madisyn Foster, Ashley Weir,
Molly Meek, Alexzy Wallace, Georgia
Rainbow, Holly Jones, Carshena Gee,
Bridget Rooney, Sasha Ellery. Manager:
Erin Ellery. Coach: Graham Bone.
West Coast U-13 girls
development squad head
to final tournament
The West Coast under-15 girls’ hockey
team lost their final game at the national
tournament in Timaru on Saturday,
going down to Central Otago 1-5 .
West Coast got off to a sluggish start
due to the early morning start and
Central Otago capitalised.
The West Coast defence worked hard
but struggled to get the ball through to
the for wards. The second half saw West
Coast come out strongly but they could
not hold out Central Otago.
Team awards went to Grace Cohen,
most improved; Katelyn Whitehead,
most dedicated; Mikayla Stevenson,
most valuable; Nicola Bruce, player of
On Friday, West Coast notched up a
good 5-0 against North Otago.
West Coast played with a positive
attitude, with Sam Friend and Lana
Gorrie stepping it up at the back and
getting the ball for ward, giving Katelyn
Whitehead the opportunity to score a
goal in the first minute of the second
Goals flowed throughout giving West
Coast an impressive win.
West Coast U-15 girls lose
final tournament game
World No 1 Rafael Nadal
produced a ruthless performance
to thrash Australian Nick
Kyrgios 6-2 6-1 in the China
Open final overnight for his
75th career singles title.
The 31-year-old was given a
tough fight early on but Kyrgios’s
challenge faded after he lost his
temper and was docked a penalty
point at 2-5 in the first set.
Nadal’s previous title at the
tournament came 12 years ago.
“I had very tough draw here,”
Nadal, who saved match points
in his opening round against
Frenchman Lucas Pouille, said.
“I was lucky the first day saving
the two match points but after
that I think I played one of my
best events of the year.”
World No 19 Kyrgios matched
Nadal early on, winning his
opening two ser vice games but
became involved in a debate
with umpire Mohamed Lahyani
over a close line call against
“I can’t play at 100% if that stuff
happens — and then you expect
me not to be angry,” Kyrgios told
He continued to argue the toss
with the official who eventually
awarded a penalty point against
the Australian during the
changeover when he trailed 2-5,
meaning he began the eighth
game already 0-15 behind.
Nadal was well in control by
then and he raced into a 5-0 lead
in the second set before Kyrgios
slightly delayed the inevitable
as the Spaniard sauntered to his
12th consecutive win.
“He played well. I played
terrible. He’s in great form. He
just destroyed me today, so it was
too good,” Kyrgios, who struck
20 winners but 35 unforced
“I put in a pretty good week,
had some good wins. It ’s tough
to find positives when you won
three games in the final. But
I guess there were positives.
In the semi-final I played
well, obviously beating Alex
Nadal, winner of the French
Open and US Open titles this
year, has won six tournaments
in a season for the first time
since 2013 and strengthens
his position at the top of the
rankings ahead of Roger Federer.
Nadal thrashes Kyrgios at
China Open final
Boris Becker is believed to have
borrowed $3.6 million from a British
telecoms billionaire amid claims he
may sell his Wimbledon trophies to
help pay off an alleged $99.7m debt.
The three-times Wimbledon
champion was declared bankrupt in
Becker’s costly divorce from his first
wife, and a series of failed business
ventures has seen his assets dwindle
from $64.6m to just $893,500,
according to German magazine Stern.
The fall from grace led Becker to ask
for a loan from John Caudwell, the
co-founder of Phones 4U.
Mr Caudwell, whose daughter
worked as a personal assistant in
Becker’s London office, agreed to loan
him $3.6m, with the interest rate set
A spokesman for Mr Caudwell told
The Times the loan had been repaid,
although later than agreed.
Becker’s financial woes are said to
have spiralled, with the six-time grand
slam winner now owing $19.39m to
Arbuthnot Latham and Co, a private
He is also believed to owe $63.5m
to Hans-Dieter Cleven, his long-term
It is understood that his total debts
amount to more than $100.4m, a
figure “vehemently denied” by his
lawyer, Christian-Oliver Moser.
Becker was said to be considering
selling his Wimbledon trophies, which
are kept at his $12.9m London home.
— New Zealand Herald
Boris Becker may
trophies to pay debt
New Zealand crossed for three late tries
to beat Australia 34-11 in a trans-Tasman
secondary schools match in Sydney.The
visitors completed an unbeaten tour
with an impressive performance but it
took time to make the result safe after
leading 10-6 at halftime.
No 8 Devan Flanders, who recently
led Hasting Boys’ High School to the
national schools title, was at the forefront
of a powerful for ward effort and was
named player of the match.
Earlier tour matches resulted in wins
over Fiji Schools (54-7) and Australian
Schools’ Barbarians (49-6). — NZ N
NZ win trans-Tasman
secondary schools test
Auckland is on the cusp of relegation from
the NPC Premiership following another
ragged performance in losing 31-18 to
Tasman in Nelson.
The home side’s dominant win guarantees
them a play-off berth and means the semi-
finalists have been found one round early.
They will join Taranaki, Canterbury and
North Harbour regardless of the results in
the final round next weekend.
More interest will focus on the fate of
Auckland, the most successful union in NPC
history with 16 titles, whose final match is
against powerhouses Canterbury.
They are locked in a dogfight with another
proud province, Waikato, to avoid dropping
to the second-tier championship.
Waikato are three points behind but have
two matches remaining, against North
Harbour and Bay of Plenty.
Auckland’s sixth loss from nine matches
came via an error-strewn effort at a
waterlogged Trafalgar Park, where they were
outscored five tries to two.
Tasman dominated all facets to become the
first team this season to win both games in a
gruelling Wednesday-Sunday double.
Winger James Lowe and 19-year-old
fullback Will Jordan defied the conditions
with their speed and skill, having a hand in
most of the tries.
Two early tries came through slick team
moves, with halfback Billy Guyton crossing
in his 50th appearance.
They led 19-6 at half-time, helped by a
crucial tackle from Tasman back Trael Joass
on his All Blacks Sevens team-mate Joe
Ravouvou to deny the winger what seemed
a certain try.
Jordan bagged his fifth try of the season
after the break and lock Shannon Frizell
responded to Auckland’s opening try through
Taleni Seu to virtually secure the result with a
quarter to play. — NZN
NPC relegation looms for Auckland
Linda Fuller and Gavin Fisher won
the women’s and men’s West Coast
Darts Association singles titles recently.
Ann Taylor was the women’s
runner-up and Tony Ridge the men’s
High breaks: Roy Fisher (5), Grant
Crook (3), Gavin Fisher, Peter Negri,
Clive Bennett 120, Linda Fuller 112,
109, Tyler Lee 102, Alan Tempo (2)
High scores: Keith Amyes (2), Evan
Calteaux (2) 180, Alan Tempo 171,
Trevor Ellen (4), Ann Taylor (2), Mark
Millings (2), Marty Keen (2), Peter
Negri, Evan Calteaux (4), Tyler Lee (2),
Karen Barrington, Stu Canlish, Grant
Keith Amyes, Gavin Fisher (2), Tony
Ridge (2) 140.
High finish: Geoff Gallon 120, Clive
Bennett 118, Gavin Fisher 114, Tristan
The West Coast Pairs will be played
at the Greymouth WMC at 2pm on
Fuller and Fisher win
West Coast darts singles titles
Argentina have flown to Ecuador for their
most important World Cup qualifier in years,
shut off from the press but knowing that a
win will keep them in the running for a
coveted place at next year’s World Cup.
Lionel Messi’s team, who reached the final
three years ago in Brazil, lie in sixth place in
the 10-team South American group, out of
the qualifying places for Russia.
The top four qualify automatically and the
fifth-placed side go into an inter-continental
playoff against Oceania winners New
Argentina have won only one World
Cup qualifier high above sea level in
the Ecuadorean capital but three points
tomorrow would guarantee them one of
those top five spots, and probably one of the
top four, depending on other results.
But with no wins in their last four qualifiers
and no Argentine having scored from open
play for almost a year, the mood is not
optimistic, even against a team that are
already out of contention.
Neither coach Jorge Sampaoli nor his
players have spoken to the press since the
disappointing 0-0 draw with Peru last week
and there is an evident tension ahead of their
game in Q uito.
The squad trained against Argentina’s
Under-20 side at their base outside Buenos
Aires yesterday morning before heading to
The players, who last year organised a
boycott of the press, did not give inter views.
And Sampaoli, who became Argentina’s
third coach of the campaign when he took
over in June, gave no clue about who will lead
the line in a game where goals are especially
vital or how to bring the best out of Messi.
The former Chile and Sevilla coach has
been criticised for chopping and changing
strikers and formations but the alterations
have brought him no joy.
Argentina have scored just 16 goals in 17
qualifiers, fewer than anyone else bar Bolivia,
and only one — an own goal in the 1-1 draw
with bottom side Venezuela — in the three
qualifiers since Sampaoli took over.
Local media suggested Dario Benedetto
will get a second chance up front. The Boca
Juniors striker started for the first time
against Peru. — Reuters
Silent Argentina head to Eucador
New Zealand sailor
Andrew McKenzie has
earned a podium finish
in this year’s European
Laser Championships in
third in the
championships after a
solid final day
of racing, jumping up
from fifth place.
Briton Nick Thompson,
who took last year’s
world laser title in
Mexico, won the event
with 130 points — 18
points clear of Italy’s
Francesco Marrai in
second place and 19 clear
McKenzie third in Barcelona
First-time coaches Marco Kurz
and Darjie Kalezic do not have
a lot of time to come to grips
with their new gigs in the ultra-
The Adelaide United and
Wellington Phoenix counterparts
both said they were “happy, but
...” in the wake of the 1-1 draw
at Westpac Stadium yesterday
Both goals came inside the
opening 10 minutes and then the
game became a stalemate, with
the teams lacking the killer touch
inside their opponents’ goal boxes.
Adelaide’s George Blackwood
had the best chance to win it for
the visitors, but his header from
just a few yards out was pushed
away by the knee of debutant
Phoenix stopper Keegan Smith.
Indeed, Smith and United
‘keeper Paul Izzo had relatively
quiet games and would have
struggled to stay warm on a frigid
Kurz’s side travel to Brisbane
next Friday night and Wellington
play Sydney FC on Sunday.
“ We have enough players to
improve a lot,” Kurz said.
When asked of the pressure to
improve after Adelaide’s dismal
ninth place last year, he said the
pressure is “from within”.
“I feel pressure in myself and for
the team, we have a high focus for
this club.” He said it was a shame
Phoenix legend Vince Lia - now
at Adelaide - was suspended for
the fixture, as his experience was
valuable and he had a strong desire
to play at Westpac Stadium again.
Kalezic said there was a lot to be
pleased about in the draw.
The opening goal, scored by
Dario Vidosic, and pressing
defence paid immediate dividends
but it was a pity his side only held
their lead for four minutes.
“It was a typical first game, we
both started by wanting to control
and it ’s bad luck that we concede
because a 1-0 lead is important.
“I was happy with the fire and
the courage we showed.” Kalezic
said the beginnings of his style of
football were evident and there
was a good foundation to build on.
“It is important to take healthy
steps, we can’t go too fast.
“ Trophies will be given at the
end of the competition so if we
keep working our structures, we
will improve.” The first task for
Kurz this week will be to check
the status of defender Taylor
Regan, who went off in the
second half with a leg injury and
needed an x-ray at Wellington
Kalezic, meanwhile, will likely
welcome back Andrew D urante,
Tom Doyle and Michael
McGlinchey from All Whites
duty to bolster his squad.
Plenty of work to do for Phoenix
PICTURE: Getty Images
Isaias of Adelaide United and Andrija Kaludjerovic of the Phoenix
compete for the ball.
The beleaguered Silver Ferns have
drafted in goal-keep Jane Watson
for some much-needed defensive
cover ahead of their third and
fourth Constellation Cup netball
tests against Australia.
Head coach Janine Southby has
now called in the cavalry ahead of
tests in Adelaide and Sydney, with
Watson coming into the fold.
The Mainland Tactix recruit
played a major role in the Ferns’
Taini Jamison Trophy win over
England, but has been overlooked
for the Constellation Cup.
midcourter Whitney Souness in
the Ferns squad, who will remain
in New Zealand for family reasons.
Watson joins Silver Ferns squad
South African utility back Damian de
Allende has been let off with a warning
for his late charge-down on All Black
The Stormers-based de Allende, the
Springboks’ reser ve back in yesterday ’s
25-24 loss to New Zealand, hit Sopoaga
high and late in the final stages of the
match and was handed a red card by
referee Jerome Garces.
Sopoaga subsequently notched a
penalty goal to put the game beyond
reach for the Springboks, who later
scored a consolation try through
Organising body Sanzaar decided
last night that de Allende’s late charge
should have earned a yellow card, rather
He was cautioned and will not earn a
“The charge was late and the
player had time to pull out before
colliding with his opponent,” review
committee chairman Nigel Hampton
“However, the collision was not
effected with a great deal of force, with
the initial contact being made with
the player’s forearm on the opponent ’s
chest, from whence the arm rose up to
The 25-year-old de Allende later
apologised to Sopoaga on social media
for the blow, saying he had no ill
First-five Sopoaga accepted his
“Don’t sweat it bro. I know there was
no malice in it. That ’s just footy. Lekker
game my bro,” Sopoaga wrote, using
a South African slang word for good.
No suspension for de Allende
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