Hager has squad input
HOCKEY: Women’s Black Sticks coach Mark Hager has had full input into selecting the national squad for the inaugural Pro League next year. Striker Olivia Shannon, who is 17, 19-year-old defender Kate Ivory and 22-year-old defender Leah Butt are the newcomers. It’s the first squad named since July’s World Cup failure in England and subsequent fallout from a critical email Hager sent to the entire team by mistake. Hager and Hockey New Zealand are the subject of an external review due to be made public at the end of the month.
Gunners fire blank FOOTBALL: Arsenal have been held to a goalless draw in football’s Europa League. They finished 0-0 with Portuguese side Sporting CP in London. Chelsea booked their spot in the next round with a fourth straight victory, 1-0 over Belarusian side FC BATE Borisov.
Kiwi boosts chances GOLF: Kiwi golfer Tim Wilkinson is well placed to qualify for the final stage of Web.Com Tour qualifying. He carded a three under par round of 69 to improve to 12 under par after three rounds and was tied for sixth with a round to go at the second stage of Q school in Florida. The top 18 players at the tournament advance to the final stage of qualifying.
Strawbridge takes reins RUGBY: Andrew Strawbridge is the new coach of Waikato’s Mitre 10 Cup side. The Chiefs assistant coach replaces Jono Gibbes, who cut short his twoyear contract to head to French club La Rochelle. Gibbes helped Waikato win promotion to the Premiership for next season.
Garcia roars to lead GOLF: Sergio Garcia shone in the first round of the latest European PGA golf event in South Africa. The Spaniard had a four-stroke lead after the first round of the Gary Player Challenge, after shooting an eight-under-par 64. Ryan Fox was tied for 11th after carding a two-under-par 70.
Herath passes Hadlee CRICKET: Sri Lankan veteran Rangana Herath dismissed two more England batsmen yesterday to move past Sir Richard Hadlee on the tally of test cricket’s top wicket-takers. Joe Root and Jos Buttler fell prey to his left-arm orthodox guile in the opening test at Galle. In his 93rd and final test, Herath moved past Hadlee’s 431 wickets to sit on 433 in eighthequal alongside Stuart Broad.
Alonso’s best shot FORMULA 1: Two-time champion Fernando Alonso is almost in retirement mode, but doesn’t think it is time to relax just yet. The Spanish driver said he could score the last points of his 17-year career at the Brazilian Grand Prix on Monday. The 37-year-old believes the Interlagos circuit is more suited to his McLaren than Abu Dhabi, where the season ends on November 25. “If we want to score points, this is the chance for us,” said Alonso, who will quit F1 at the end of the campaign. “We have some uncertain weather for the weekend coming. Maybe that gives us more possibilities.”