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Wednesday, May 7, 2014
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Manchester United’s debutant James Wilson shoots to score the first of his two goals against Hull City at
Old Trafford, in Manchester today.
Kieran Read has already been ruled out
of the Crusaders’ match against the Reds
in Brisbane on Sunday with concussion.
The All Blacks No 8 missed last
weekend’s victory over the Brumbies.
Coach Todd Blackadder said while
Read’s concussion was relatively mild,
the symptoms had not cleared. It is
Read’s second concussion of the season.
“ We always knew that Kieran was a
50-50 call for this week and although
he’s making good progress, we would
rather not leave it to later in the week to
make a decision,” Blackadder said.
“This takes the pressure off Kieran to
play, and it removes a question mark for
the rest of the team so that we can get
on with preparing for this Reds match.
“This is by no means an indication that
Kieran is not recovering as well as we’d
expect, in fact he is progressing well. But
he has received two knocks in the past
month and we are taking no risks. The
Super Rugby season is a long one so
there will be plenty of time yet for Kieran
to make the significant contribution he
always does on the field.”
The Crusaders team to play the Reds
will be named tomorrow. — APNZ
Hurricanes’ coach Mark Hammett has
tweaked his for ward pack for Friday
night ’s Super Rugby outing against the
Rebels in Melbourne.
After their disappointing 39-30 loss
to the Waratahs in Sydney last Saturday,
Hammett has dropped tighthead prop
Jeffery Toomaga-Allen to the bench and
installed Ben Franks in the No 3 jersey
with Reggie Goodes set to start on the
other side of the scrum.
Exciting openside flanker Ardie Savea
will also start with Jack Lam moving to
Lock Jeremy Thrush has been named
to play providing his sore neck does not
flare up again in the coming days but if
he was to be scratched, Blade Thomson
would come in to the starting line-up
with Brad Shields joining the bench.
Hammett has kept the same backline
who looked impressive on attack against
The Hurricanes are in seventh place
on the Super Rugby ladder and remain
firmly in the play-off hunt, while the
Rebels are 11th.
Andre Taylor, Cory
Jane, Conrad Smith (captain), Alapati
Leiua, Julian Savea, Beauden Barrett,
TJ Perenara, Victor Vito, Ardie Savea,
Faifili Levave, James Broadhurst, Jeremy
Thrush-Blade Thomson, Ben Franks,
Dane Coles, Reggie Goodes. Reser ves:
Motu Matu’u, Chris Eves, Jeffery
Toomaga-Allen, Blade Thomson-Brad
Shields, Jack Lam, Billy Guyton, Tim
Bateman, Matt Proctor.
Read ruled out of Reds match
Slight shuffle for Hurricanes pack
Brian Minto, the man who effectively ended
Shane Cameron’s professional career, has
asked for a neutral referee for his fight against
Joseph Parker in July and his wish is likely to
A jetlagged but amiable Minto arrived for
his press conference announcing the fight
against New Zealand heavyweight Parker in
Auckland yesterday only to be accused of being
a “dirty fighter” by promotor Dean Lonergan
because of the tactics the American employed
in his impressive victory over New Zealander
Cameron in December last year.
In that fight at Trusts Stadium, New Zealand
referee Lance Revill deducted a point in
the fifth and sixth rounds for the use of the
elbow and head respectively. Cameron, heavily
bleeding above his left eye, did not start the
Parker’s trainer Kevin Barry, who was in
Minto’s corner for the Cameron bout, also has
concerns about the fighter’s tendency to use his
head and elbows in close contact.
However, Minto said he never resorted to dirty
tactics, suggesting his chances of getting a fair
go by a New Zealand referee were diminishing
by the second.
“ He’s painting the picture that I’m a dirty
fighter,” Minto said of Lonergan, who was
not present at the announcement. “Every little
thing that looks like an infraction he (referee) is
going to take a point. And this is what I don’t
like — they ’re going to keep me from fighting
my fight. When I get to the inside I’m always
going to use shoulders, and my head, but if they
take that away then...
“Look, they ’re risking everything and they
even said it. Deep waters — is Joseph ready for
deep waters? We’ ll soon find out. ”
David Higgins, a colleague of Lonergan’s
at Duco, later said he was “relaxed” about the
“ We’ ll probably look to fly someone in from
overseas,” he said.
Barry’s concerns about Minto’s style have
been heightened by the cuts Parker has suffered
around his eye area in his last two fights to
Afa Tatupu and most recently Marcelo Luiz
Nascimento in Germany.
“That ’s definitely not to be taken lightly,” Barry
said. “It is serious, especially when you’ve had a
cut like Joseph had against King Afa and then
opening up a bit in that last fight, that really is
a concern. We can’t afford to have three fights
in a row with cuts and yet we’re up against a
guy who cuts a lot of his opponents by the way
he fights. This is Joseph’s most important test
and he has to follow the programme and stay
in control of his distance and if he doesn’t then
there’s every chance he’s going to get cut. ”
Barry said he had Cameron in mind for this
stage of Parker’s career, but that changed after
“ I spent three weeks with Brian, I know a
few things about him now that I’ll be trying to
exploit to our advantage.”
Parker (won 8, lost 0) v Minto (won 39, lost
7), Saturday, July 5 at Vodafone Events Centre,
Manukau. — APNZ
debutant James Wilson can help bring
back the excitement to Old Trafford,
interim manager Ryan Giggs said after
the 18-year-old shone in a 3-1 Premier
League win over Hull City today.
Wilson, the latest young talent to come
off the United production line, showed
razor sharp predatory instincts to score
a goal in each half as Giggs’s side
completed a comfortable victory in their
final home match of the season.
Wilson was one of two youngsters
making their first United appearances
on the night, along with 20-year-old
for ward Tom Lawrence, and was the
leading light in a three-pronged attack
with 19-year-old Adnan Januzaj.
The performance of the three
youngsters will give beleaguered United
supporters hope that better times lie
ahead after a nightmare season.
The club, who sacked David Moyes late
last month after a disastrous 10-month
spell in charge, can finish no higher than
sixth and are in danger of missing out
on European football for the first time
“ I said when I took over I wanted to
bring excitement back. Some of the
for ward play from the three young lads
was brilliant,” Giggs said.
“ We got the young lads in to train with
us and they never looked out of place.
I wanted to freshen things up from
Saturday and they never let us down.
James Wilson is not just a finisher, his
all-round play is very good and he is
The sight of United’s youngsters tearing
into Hull on a night when Nemanja
Vidic made his final home appearance
and Giggs was keeping his cards close
to his chest about his own future, added
to the impression the club were ushering
in a new era.
Vidic, who is leaving for Inter Milan at
the end of the season, ended his eight-
year spell at United with a substitute
“I had so many great times here. It is
hard to speak because of the emotions,”
he stuttered as he stood on the pitch at
full-time and addressed the crowd, who
chanted his name.
“Most important I would like to thank
the players, the manager and all the
coaches. Thank you for everything and
especially to the fans, you have been
fantastic to me all these years.”
Vidic was for so long the rock at
the heart of defence in United’s
successful sides, his towering presence
and menacing physique proving an
immovable object as he picked up five
league titles and a Champions League
United great Giggs, meanwhile, was
giving away no clues about his own
Coming on as a late substitute against
Hull, the 40-year-old may have made
the last of his 963 appearances for the
“My concentration has not changed, I
will do my job on and off the pitch and
we will see what happens after Sunday,”
“The fans have kept supporting us and
they will carry on supporting us. ”
Australian Open champion
Stanislas Wawrinka crashed to a
shock second-round defeat at the
Madrid Open today when he was
upset 1-6, 6-2, 6-4 by qualifier
Third-seeded Swiss Wawrinka,
who followed up his title in
Melbourne with victory at last
month’s Monte Carlo Masters,
started strongly against the 70th-
ranked Austrian, who at 20 years
and eight months is the youngest
player in the top 100.
However, he lost his way in
the second set and was unable to
recover in the third as Thiem pulled
off his first ever win over a top 10
player to secure passage to the third
round and a meeting with 15th
seed Mikhail Youzhny of Russia or
unseeded Spaniard Feliciano Lopez.
Wawrinka told a news conference
he had trouble adjusting to the
conditions in the Spanish capital,
where the thinner air at altitude
helps the balls fly faster than a clay
court at sea level. “It ’s never easy to
(adjust), especially here, it ’s flying a
little bit. He was finding his game
and I was hesitating with my game
and wasn’t playing my best game.
He’s a good player.
“ We all know that. We all see that,
especially since the beginning of
the year. I’m not surprised because I
know him. He was going for it and
he deser ved to win.”
Thiem added: “I cannot really
believe it. Of course I was a little
bit ner vous, but it wasn’t the reason
for the first set, his pace was just too
high for me.
“I played a good game at the
beginning of the second set to break
him and then I started to get used to
more and more his pace and angles
and his game.
“This year I played very good so far.
Played also very consistent. I think
that ’s it ’s more important, to play
almost every day against these top
guys to increase your own level.”
Thiem was joined in the last 16
by fifth seed David Ferrer, who
had to dig deep to see off Spanish
compatriot Albert Ramos 7-6 (6),
Top seed and defending champion
Rafa Nadal, the world No 1, begins
his title defence with a second-round
match against unseeded Argentine
Juan Monaco tomorrow before
seventh seed Andy Murray takes on
Nicolas Almagro. — Reuters
Minto disputes ‘dirty fighter’ tag
Shock defeat for Wawrinka
Brad Thorn has still got another year
left in him.
The injured former All Black lock may
be four months away from getting back
on the paddock but is not ready to head
Thorn’s right biceps were torn from
the bone early in the second half of the
match against the Bulls in D unedin on
April 11. He was attempting to tackle
Bulls fullback Jurgen Vissar when he ran
“I was pumped, thinking I’m the first
guy here, I’m going to get that fullback. I
grabbed him but when I grabbed him he
went another way and I heard something.
I just knew something had happened. I
tried to carry on.
“I hit a maul and it did not feel right.
I just knew I needed to get it looked at.
There was still good strength in my arm.
But the specialist looked at it and said it
Thorn will not get back on the paddock
for four to five months. For a guy who
first played top-level sport in 1994, this is
his first major injury.
“This has been a new experience for me.
I have been lucky throughout my career,
as this is pretty much my first serious
injury. I cracked my collar bone when I
was in reserve grade about 20 years ago.
“It is an interesting experience. It is
not very enjoyable; weird, really, and
frustrating for me. So I guess a lot of guys
have to go through it.
“Just realising I am not going to get to
play Super rugby this year is tough. I’ve
just got to be patient. I always like to push
things. But if I try and do too much, then
I could damage what has been done.”
Thorn had an operation to reattach the
biceps to the bone and is out of plaster
now but will still have his arm in a brace
for the next few weeks.
Aged 39, the 60-test All Black is not
ready to quit playing.
“I will say I will play again. This year is a
little bit frustrating. I only got to play four
games when I am used to playing 25 to
30 games. I definitely want to play again.
I’ve got to look where.
“A guy from the Bulls did the same
injury the week before and he is 27. There
are guys every week who get injuries and
their season is over. It is just because
I happen to have the No 39 beside my
name. Does that mean my body is telling
me something? I don’t know.
“It is a contact sport. I go hard and for
once, I got an injury. Is it because I’m old
now? Maybe, I don’t know.”
Thorn said he had a great off-season and
had racked up personal bests in the gym.
He won the Highlanders’ bench press
competition and was not sore after games.
He had studied a couple of papers
with the Australian Strength and Con-
ditioning Association and helped out
Highlanders trainer Andrew Beardmore
in the gym. So is that where Thorn sees
his future, helping throw some tin?
“Possibly, but I would not mind having
some go at coaching. But possibly some-
thing away from rugby, I do not know.”
No quitting for Thorn
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