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Two young New Zealand road
cyclists returned to the track with a
vengeance when they won the two-
man madison at the UCI World
Cup in Mexico today.
Tom Scully and Paddy Bevin
combined to win the 40km, 160 lap
race at Guadalajara with a brilliant
performance, winning the final
sprint to claim the honours, which
qualified the New Zealanders for
the event at next month s World
It proved an outstanding return
to international track competition
for the 23-year-old Scully, who
won a World Cup in Melbourne
four years ago but had his budding
career thwarted after a serious
accident racing on the roads in
e UK-based professional road
rider, who took a year to recover
from the effects of his crash, made
his return to the track in the
Oceania Championships on his
home velodrome late last year.
Scully also finished runner-up
in the points race, only two points
behind the winner after being one
of four riders to put a lap on the
Bevin, 22, has been based in the
USA for the last four years riding
for Pro Continental team Bissell
Racing, before returning to New
Zealand full-time late last year and
turning his attentions back to the
e pair led early until the
Belgian combination won the
penultimate sprint to draw level
on points but the New Zealanders
answered by winning the final
sprint to claim the honours.
e other podium went to
Auckland s Sam Webster who
beat fellow Bike NZ rider Eddie
Dawkins for the bronze medal in
the men s sprint.
Earlier Dawkins was the third
fastest qualifier in 9.912 seconds,
with all three New Zealand
sprinters going under the 10
second barrier. Webster was sixth
fastest in 9.949 and Southland s
Matt Archibald 12th in 9.982,
finishing sixth after going out in
In other racing world
championship, medallist Simon van
Velthooven was fourth in the men s
1000m time trial in 1.00.214s, won
by Australian Scott Sunderland in
59.675, and won the ride-off for
seventh to 12th in the keirin after
finishing fourth in the semi-finals.
e men s team sprint could only
manage sixth place with a solid
43.860s effort, Bevin was 10th in
the 4000m individual pursuit in
4:31.519 while the development
squad was 10th fastest in the
4000m team pursuit in 4:09.209.
e squad returns to New
Zealand ahead of team selections
for the UCI World Championships
in Cali starting in five weeks.
e Silver Ferns dominated England
49-32 --- the danger team in world netball
--- with a second string attack line-up this
morning in their final test outing before the
With England having a full-strength squad
to select from for the first time in three years
and coming off their domestic season, the
Ferns were considered vulnerable in this
morning s match in London.
It was this time last year that England
recorded a historic 3-0 series whitewash over
Australia, and they fancied their chances of
adding New Zealand to their list of scalps.
But after a promising start in which they
led 13-9 at the first break, the English fell
away badly in the five minutes either side of
half-time, as the new Ferns attacking line-up
of Cathrine Latu, Jodi Brown and Camilla
Lees worked their way into the match.
With three of their biggest names ---
Casey Kopua, Maria Tutaia and Irene van
Dyk --- not even taking the court today,
the convincing 17 goal win will be a big
confidence boost for the team coming off a
poor 2013 season.
e win was also a fitting and memorable
way for dynamic centre Laura Langman to
mark her 100th test. Langman became the
first player in world netball to notch up 100
consecutive tests, having never missed a game
for the Ferns since her test debut at the age
Langman, who captained the side in the
absence of star defender Casey Kopua,
typically had a strong influence on the
proceedings, controlling the pace of the
attack end and was a workhorse on defence in
what was a defensive-led performance from
After changing hotels over the weekend to
be closer to the stadium at London Olympic
Park, a late venue change was enforced on
the Silver Ferns after significant damage was
inflicted to the floor following an event at the
arena over the weekend.
Officials deemed the court surface was not
of sufficient quality to host an international
netball event. at meant Langman s
milestone was brought up in front of a much
more modest crowd at Crystal Palace.
But it was no less special for Langman,
who was honoured in a presentation after the
"It s very humbling to be acknowledged
in this way," Langman said. "I must admit I
did get a bit emotional during the national
anthem, but I was really pleased with the
team for getting the job done on court. I don t
think the scoreline really reflected how tough
it was for us out there."
It was particularly tough for the Silver
Ferns in the opening 15 minutes, with
England s highly regarded defensive pairing
of Geva Mentor and Eboni Beckford-
Chambers making an immediate impact in
the circle. e Ferns struggled to get their
ball placement into Brown and Latu right
early on, with the athletic pair picking up
some good balls.
New Zealand worked hard on defence
right through the court to try and win the
ball back, and were successful in limiting the
damage, but England still held a handy 13-9
lead at the first break.
Finding better rhythm on attack, the visitors
slowly managed to peg the English lead back
in the second spell, drawing level at 18-all
with just under five minutes left before half-
time, before a late break gave them a 23-20
lead heading into the second half.
Expected to bring on their more familiar
frontline of Irene van Dyk, Maria Tutaia
and Shannon Francois in the second
half, Taumaunu opted to test her lesser-
experienced line-up at that intensity for the
full 60 minutes.
Instead it was England who rung in the
changes, with Anna Mayes curiously making
changes to her midcourt that had the better
of the Ferns for much of the first half.
Tactix import Jade Clarke was replaced by
Stacey Francis at wing defence, while rookie
Laura Malcolm was brought on on at wing
attack in place of the dynamic Sasha Corbin.
Finding better speed through the midcourt,
the Ferns immediately raced out to a 29-22
lead five minutes into the period, prompting a
time-out from England and further changes
to their line-up, which were again confusing.
Mentor --- one of the best defenders in world
netball --- was pulled off, with Beckford-
Chambers moving back to goal keep and
Ama Agbeze coming on at goal defence.
While England were chopping and
changing their line-up, the more settled New
Zealand side charged ahead, extending their
lead out to 39-28 heading into the final turn.
A change to the shooting end in the fourt
quarter saw the home side launched a mini
comeback as the crafty pairing of Kadeen
Corbin and Pamela Cookey combined for
some slick passages of play to confuse the
New Zealalnd defenders. A well-timed
injury break from the Ferns helped them
regain control of the match as they ran out
convincing 17-goal winners. --- APNZ
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
PICTURE: Christine Linnell
'Boomer' bodyboard waves
Greymouth s Ben McPaike shows the style that carried him to third place in the Blaketown Bodyboard Club s summer competition,
on Saturday. Aran Naismith was overall winner, with Sam Wells in second place. e competition drew people from the West Coast,
Dunedin and Christchurch.
Rafa Nadal came through his first
proper test to storm into the quarter-
finals of the Australian Open yesterday
but Maria Sharapova was ushered to
the exit after a second big shock in as
many days in the women s draw.
Victoria Azarenka was left as the only
top-three seed still standing in the last
eight when Sharapova was scratched
from the title race by Dominika
Cibulkova, a day after Serena Williams
had also tumbled out in the fourth
In the men s draw, the "Big Four" look
poised to scrap it out for yet another
grand slam crown over the next week
after Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy
Murray all won last night to join Novak
Djokovic in the last eight.
Spaniard Nadal led the way with a 7-6
(7-3) 7-5, 7-6 (7-3) victory over Japan s
Kei Nishikori on Rod Laver Arena that
was by no means as easy as the phrase
"straight sets" would suggest.
e world No 1 had to contend
with a blister on his hand, a tumble,
a time violation at a crucial moment
and his first losses of his serve in the
tournament but most of all with some
inspired shot-making from the Asian
"I didn t play bad today, but I didn t
play as good as I did two days ago,"
Nadal said, reflecting on his brilliant
performance in the third round against
"But today s victory has much more
value than the victory of two days ago.
Because when you are playing that
good, the normal thing is to win.
"When you are playing normal and
the opponent is a good one, and you are
able to keep winning, that has much
While Nadal will meet Sharapova s
boyfriend Grigor Dimitrov for a place
in the semi-finals, Federer and Murray s
quarter-final date ensures that at least
one of the quartet of dominant men s
players will go home tomorrow.
Federer s quickfire 6-3, 7-5, 6-4
victory over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was the
most impressive of the day, particularly
given the French 10th seed had taken
him to five sets in Melbourne and
beaten him at Roland Garros last year.
"I definitely felt momentum was on
my side, no doubt," the Swiss 17-times
grand slam champion said.
"I started the match well. Did I break
first game? I think I did. I felt, alright,
things are working for me tonight. Let
me try to run away with it."
Tsonga said Federer had played
"I was not surprised because, you
know, when you play Roger, you expect
him at this level," Tsonga said.
"You know he s able to play like this,
so you always expect it."
He said he just could not find a way
to stop Federer s momentum. "I was not
enough good, you know, to give him a
good opposition, and that s it."
Murray also looked to be racing to
victory against Stephane Robert, the
first lucky loser to reach the fourth
round in Melbourne, but blew a couple
of match points in the third set and
was dragged into a tie-break, which the
Frenchman won 8-6.
e Wimbledon champion took out
his frustrations on his a racket, changed
his shirt and then whipped through the
fourth set to record a 6-1, 6-2, 6-7 (6),
"I dominated 95% of the match, and
for 15 minutes didn t close the match
out," the fourth seed said.
"But I still created chances, even when
I wasn t playing so well at the end of
that third set. So it was pretty good for
the most part."
Like Murray, Sharapova missed the
back end of last season because of
injury and she admitted after her 3-6,
6-4, 6-1 defeat to Cibulkova that the
tournament had probably come a little
bit early for her.
"I certainly would have loved to
played a little bit more before playing a
grand slam, but this is the chance that I
was given," the Russian third seed said,
the 2008 champion here.
"It s tough. I will be genuine about it.
It s never easy (but) it s moments like
this that ultimately shape you and make
you who you are."
Azarenka was utterly dominant as
she swept into the quarter-finals with
a 6-3, 6-2 victory over American
Sloane Stephens that extended her
winning streak at Melbourne Park to
e win had none of the edge of last
year s semi-final between the pair, when
Azarenka took a medical time out after
blowing five match points.
Both Azarenka and Stephens had
played down the controversy and the
second seeded Belarusian said she could
not have felt more at home on the same
Rod Laver Arena where she was booed
"I just love playing here," she said.
"It feels so cosy. It feels like I m in my
living room, on my couch. I can have
some chips and salsa --- that s how it
Azarenka denied the departure of
Williams and Sharapova had made her
a strong favourite for a third straight
"We ve seen over the last couple of
days that somebody can bring their best
game on any given day," she said.
Next up for Azarenka is fifth seed
Agnieszka Radwanska, who beat rising
Spanish talent Garbine Muguruza 6-1,
6-3 in the final match of the day.
Cibulkova s reward for beating
Sharapova is a meeting with Simona
Halep, who beat eighth seed Jelena
Jankovic 6-4, 2-6, 6-0 to reach her first
grand slam quarter-final.
" ere s no pressure on me so I can
just enjoy the quarter-finals," Romanian
Halep said. "It s my chance and I have
to fight for it."
Dimitrov, also entering unknown
territory in the second week of a grand
slam, beat Spain s Roberto Bautista 6-3,
3-6, 6-2, 6-4 to set up his last eight
date with Nadal.
"He s Rafa. We all know him," the
confident 22-year-old Bulgarian said.
"But I m quite happy with the way
I m performing so far. So I like my
chances." --- Reuters
PICTURE: Getty Images
Roger Federer stretches to play a forehand shot in his Australian Open clash last night in Melbourne.
Vintage Federer sets up
too strong for England
Canterbury pace bowler Hamish
Bennett will replace Adam Milne
in the New Zealand squad for
the remainder of the one-day
international series against India.
Bennett enters as the top wicket-
taker in the Plunket Shield this
season, taking 24 wickets at 23.12.
In the HRV Cup he took three
wickets at 49 with an economy rate
Milne left the field during
Sunday s victory in Napier. He
had an MRI scan in Hamilton
yesterday which showed a torn
abdominal muscle. He will need a
rehabilitation period of around six
Bennett joined the team for
training in Hamilton this afternoon.
e 26-year-old last played a ODI
in March 2011 against Sri Lanka in
Mumbai. He has played a solitary
test; against India in 2010.
e dejection on Milne s face was
palpable during the match, as the
injury threatened to end a seminal
Midway through his eighth
over he spoke to captain Brendon
McCullum about the niggle.
It was the start of his third spell
in a match which had him regularly
clocking in excess of 150kph ---
the speedball radar counted eight
occasions. It is understood Milne
wanted to continue but McCullum
advised other wise. e 21-year-old
left the field.
McCullum said: "It s tough for
Milny to get injured bowling at
that pace ... It doesn t look great."
Fellow bowler Mitchell
McClenaghan said he was
"absolutely gutted for the man".
"He had his (T20I) debut (as an
18-year-old in 2010), went back
(to domestic cricket) worked on his
accuracy and returned.
"To see someone bowl that quick
and accurately is a throwback to the
Shane Bond days."
Milne has been cast as "the new
Bond" but needs a chance to settle
if he s to sustain a career rather than
being remembered for a fleeting
link with the No 150. --- APNZ
NZ cyclists in
PICTURE: Getty Images
New Zealand cyclists Patrick Bevin, left, and Scully omas with
their gold medals after winning the men s madison final at the UCI
Cycling track World Cup in Guadalajara, Mexico today.
Injured Milne out of series
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