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Friday, January 11, 2019
The ASB Classic has been stripped of
all its seeded players as Fabio Fognini and
Pablo Carreno Busta both crashed out in
the quarter-finals in Auckland.
Former Classic champion Philipp
Kohlschreiber of Germany beat second seed
Fognini of Italy in straight sets 6-3 6-1.
Fognini was the highest seed remaining in
the tournament — a label Kohlschreiber has
taken leading into the semi-finals.
Fognini’s frustration, much like his
throwing of the racquet the day before,
started to show in the second set smacking
the ball out of the Auckland stadium as
Kohlschreiber gained a 5-1 lead proving
early the German had done enough.
“I don’t know what happened to Fabio,
maybe he was injured or something,” says
“I tried to hang in there, after that
moment in the first set he dropped his level.
He was more worried about himself.
“ Tomorrow in the semi-final we both have
a chance to win — it will be a good match.”
Kohlschreiber will face American Tennys
Sandgren after he upset Argentinian
Leonardo Mayer 6-3 7-6 .
Auckland-raised Brit Cameron Norrie
pleased the homecrowd with a 7-6, 6-3 win
over American Taylor Fritz to reach
his fourth career ATP Tour semi-
It is a disappointing end for the
21-year-old American though
who was unable to maintain the
momentum that saw him beat the
big ser ving American John Isner
earlier in the draw.
Norrie and Fritz will link up as
partners at the upcoming Australian
Open, and while Norrie considers
Fritz a friend says he can thank
an energetic Auckland crowd for
getting him over the line.
“I know he serves well, solid
backhand return. I had to be the
one that was aggressive. Obviously we
are friends but I had to put that to the
side,” Norrie says.
“The crowd is getting behind me especially
in those tough moments. It ’s helping
having them on my side and I feel like my
opponent can feel it as well.
“It means a lot for me and tennis in New
Zealand, the juniors can see a kid from here
grew up and became successful.”
Norrie will play German Jan-Lennard
Struff in the first semi-final, who after three
hours broke a deadlock to defeat Spaniard
Pablo Carreno Busta 7-6, 6-7, 7-6 .
New Zealand found success in the
doubles with Michael Venus and his South
African partner Raven Klaasen through to
the semi-finals after beating Argentinian
Guido Pella and Portugal’s Joao Sousa 7-5,
Russian-born New Zealander Artem Sitak
and American partner Austin Krajicek were
unable to overcome American duo Bob and
Michael Ryan going down 6-7, 6-2, 2-10.
No seeded players in
The Spanish Civil Guard
has made widespread arrests
into tennis match-fixing by an
organised Armenian criminal
gang, the European Union’s
Europol agency said overnight.
There were 11 house searches
carried out in Spain and 167,000
euros in cash were seized, along
with a shotgun, more than
50 electronic devices, credit
cards, five luxury vehicles and
documentation related to the
case. Forty-two bank accounts
have been frozen.
The Civil Guard said in a
statement 15 people had been
arrested, including the leaders of
the criminal organisation, while
a further 68 people have been
Of the 83 people implicated
in the case, 28 were professional
tennis players, playing in the
ITF Futures and Challenger
categories, and one whose
identity was not revealed
competed in the 2018 US Open.
“Our officers have proved the
group had been operating since
February 2017 and estimate that
they had earned millions of euros
through the operation,” added
the Civil Guard’s statement.
News of the arrests came a
day after the Tennis Integrity
Unit (TIU) revealed that in
2018 more tennis players were
disciplined for violations of
anti-corruption rules than in
any other year since the body’s
Twenty-one individuals broke
anti-corruption rules with the
majority sanctioned for match-
fixing or betting offences,
while eight lifetime bans were
imposed, most notably to
Italian former world number
49 Daniele Bracciali for match-
fixing and facilitating betting.
panel, set up by the sport’s
four governing organisations,
the ATP, WTA, ITF and
Grand Slam Board, last month
published a report into the
threat of match-fixing in the
It described the current tennis
environment as “a lamentably
fertile breeding ground for
breaches of integrity ”,
particular the lowest rungs of
the professional game.
The report said there were
professional players in 2018
but that only about 600 earned
enough money to cover the
annual cost of competing.
Of the 400 match specific
alerts flagged up by betting
organisations to the TIU in
2018, 91% were generated at
the lowest and mid-levels of
the sport where prize money is
minimal compared to what is on
offer on the main tours.
“The imbalance between
prize money and the cost of
competing places players in an
invidious position by tempting
them to contrive matches for
financial reward,” the report
said. — Reuters
Arrests after investigation into tennis match-fixing
The finalists for the 56th annual Halberg
awards have been announced with Lisa
Carrington, Tom Walsh and Sophie Pascoe
headlining their respective fields.
The awards recognise New Zealand’s top
sporting achievements of 2018 and will be
held in Auckland on February 21.
Carrington, the 2016 supreme Halberg
Award winner is up against squash player
Joelle King, eventer Jonelle Price and
snowboarder Zoi Sadowski-Synott.
Carrington won a gold and three silver
medals at the Canoe Sprint World
Championships last year while King won
the prestigious Hong Kong Open.
Jonelle Price became the first New
Zealand woman to win the Badminton
Horse Trials while Sadowski-Synott
claimed bronze at the Winter Olympics in
Walsh, the 2017 Sportsman of the Year,
is up against freeskier Nico Porteous,
Supercars champion Scott Mclaughlin and
2013 winner Scott Dixon.
Walsh won gold in the men’s shot put
at the Commonwealth Games on the
Gold Coast last year, as well as the World
Porteous won bronze at the Winter
Olympics while McLaughlin won his first
Australian Supercars title.
Dixon made the finalists after claiming
his fifth Indy Car Championship title in
the United States.
In the para athlete/team of the year
category, Sophie Pascoe is vying for her
fourth title following her haul of five
gold and two silvers at the Pan Pacific
Para Swimming Championships and
She is up against paralympic skier Adam
Hall, who won gold and bronze at the
Fellow skier Corey Peters is also a finalist
after winning bronze in South Korea.
Para canoe racer Scott Martlew, who
earned a silver medal at the Canoe Sprint
World Championships, is also a finalist.
In the team of the year category are the
Black Ferns sevens, All Blacks sevens,
Under 17 women’s football team, women’s
Black Sticks and women’s kayaking
The Black Sticks claimed gold at last
year’s Commonwealth Games and silver at
the Hockey World League.
The Under 17 women’s football team
became the first New Zealand side to win
a medal at a World Cup after claiming
bronze late last year in an inspirational
Both the All Blacks sevens and
Black Ferns sevens won gold in the
Commonwealth Games and World Cup in
San Francisco in June.
The New Zealand women’s kayaking
team are a finalist for claiming silver at the
Canoe Sprint World Championships.
Lisa Carrington’s mentor Gordon Walker
is up for New Zealand Coach of the Year
— the title he won in 2017.
He is up against Black Ferns sevens
coach Allan Bunting and All Blacks sevens
coach Clark Laidlaw.
Also in the running are the under 17
women’s football coach Leon Birnie and
Ireland rugby head coach Joe Schmidt —
winner of the Coach of the Year title at the
World Rugby awards.
Scmidt coached Ireland to their win
over the All Blacks in D ublin and the Six
Nations title in Northern Hemisphere
White Ferns all-rounder Amelia Kerr
is up for the Emerging Talent award
alongside sailor Josh Armit, swimmer
Lewis Clareburt, Under 17 footballer
Anna Leat and shot-putter Maddison-Lee
Wesche. — RN Z
Halberg finalists confirmed
PICTURE: Getty Images
Tom Walsh on his way to the shot put gold medal at the Commonwealth Games.
The former All Whites
striker and Oceania
player of the century
Wynton Rufer is out of a
coma and recovering after
suffering a heart attack in
Auckland on Sunday.
The 56-year-old Rufer
told German website
Deichstube was out
of intensive care and
expecting to make a full
One News has reported
that he had been riding a
Lime scooter at the time
of the incident.
Florian Wellman, a
friend of Rufer’s who was
with him at the time of
the incident, said “this is
a miracle from Heaven. ”
“It was so close,” he
Wellman said the pair
had been to a Breakers
basketball game and were
returning home when
Rufer played 23 times
for New Zealand,
including at the 1982
World Cup, and was
a star in European
club football in both
Germany in the 1980s
He was named FIFA’s
Oceania footballer of the
20th century. — RN Z
Wynton Rufer out of
coma after heart attack
The Wellington Phoenix player
Sarpreet Singh is up for the A-League’s
Young Footballer of the Year award.
The attacking midfielder was the
December nomination as he played a
significant part of the Phoenix’s seven-
game unbeaten run.
It is Singh’s first nomination and
the first time that a player from the
Wellington Phoenix has been nominated
for the award.
Born and raised in Auckland, Singh
signed his first professional contract
with Wellington Phoenix in 2017 after
graduating from the Academy team.
A New Zealand youth and senior
International, the 19 year old had a
blistering start to the A-League 2018-
19 season starting eight out of the
opening 10 matches for the Wellington
Phoenix and scoring twice in December
against the Central Coast Mariners and
Brisbane Roar FC.
Singh says he is honoured.
“I’m very pleased to be nominated for
the award, it does mean a lot to me and
my family and I think it’s not possible
without my team-mates and what
they’ve done for me this year and for the
coaching staff for believing in me and
giving me this opportunity.”
Each month representatives from the
FFA Technical Department vote on a
3-2 -1 basis for the most outstanding
U-23 players in the A-League during
that period. — RNZ
Sarpreet Singh up for
Young Player of the Year
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