Marsh, Faulkner miss SA tour; Starc hospitalised MELBOURNE, Australia (AP): Batsman Shaun Marsh and all-rounder James Faulkner will not play in Australia’s one-day international tour of South Africa – Marsh has a fractured finger and Faulkner a calf injury. Australia physiotherapist David Beakley said in a statement that Marsh’s fracture was in a finger joint and that Faulkner sustained a low-grade calf strain during a training session in Sydney yesterday. Cricket Australia said Usman Khawaja will replace Marsh, while no replacement has been named for Faulkner. Australia will play a one-off ODI against Ireland in Benoni, South Africa to open the tour on September 27, followed by five one-day matches against South Africa, ending October 12 in Cape Town. Meanwhile, fast bowler Mitchell Starc needed 30 stitches in his left leg after a bizarre training accident yesterday, but is expected to be fit for the first test in Australia against South Africa, beginning November 3 in Perth. Chinese investors complete takeover of West Brom WEST BROMWICH, England (AP): The takeover of English Premier League club West Bromwich Albion by Chinese investors has been finalised. West Brom said in a statement that the purchase of the club by Yunyi Guokai (Shanghai) Sports Development Limited, announced in August, was completed yesterday. The takeover had been subject to approval by the league and English financial authorities. Lai Guochuan will head the new ownership group. He oversaw the development of the landscaping company Palm, which started out as a plant nursery business and now develops eco-towns in China and is worth 1.8 million pounds ($2.36 million). He has purchased an 88 percent stake in the club owned by chairman Jeremy Peace, who is stepping down. Ronaldo’s warning MADRID (AP): Cristiano Ronaldo hopes Real Madrid learned their lesson after almost losing at home to Sporting Lisbon in their Champions League opener. Madrid’s late comeback on Wednesday night gave the defending champions a winning start in the group stage, but the team’s disappointing performance at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium raised some concerns. Ronaldo grabbed an 89th-minute equaliser with a superb free kick, and substitute Alvaro Morata netted the winner with a powerful header four minutes into injury time for a 2-1 win over the Portuguese side with which Ronaldo started his career. “This game serves as a warning that we can’t be starting games so poorly,” Ronaldo said. “Because teams will sweep the floor with us and we don’t want that. We want to finish top of the group and win.”
Clad in green, the male national basketball team on Monday evening endured two rounds of overtime to clinch their second victory at the Caribbean Basketball Confederation (CBC) Championships/FIBA Americup pre-qualifiers in Suriname.The national men’s basketball teamEarly on in the match-up, Guyana found themselves with an eight-point deficit to St Vincent and the Grenadines, a lead that often extended within the first two quarters of the game, but the local boys dug deep to put on another stellar performance at the Anthony Nesty Sporthal in Paramaribo.With a few keen words from Coach Junior Hercules and a change of their game plan, Guyana found themselves back in the game after trailing St Vincent.By the end of the third quarter, both teams were tied up on 62 points. With Guyana capitalising on quick plays and SVG using their height advantage, the match-up could have swung either way, but as fate would have it, the scores remained tied on 81 at the ring of the final buzzer. However, it is no secret that the narrative of the game would have been different had Guyana been consistent with their free throw opportunities. The local team were only able to sink fewer than 50 per cent of their 34 attempts.Going into their first overtime, Guyana had a newfound burst of energy which they used to match every shot that the SVG made. Another tie on 96 meant that the Stanton Rose-led Guyanese side would have another shot at victory.Producing a series-high 41 points, the 18-year-old captain copped a critical rebound near the ending of the second overtime. Surrounded by the five St Vincent and the Grenadines players, Rose set up Ray Victor’s last two-pointer, which turned out to be the winning points of the game. The nail-biting match-up eventually ended on 102-104 in Guyana’s favour.Alongside Rose’s stunning 41 points, which consisted of nine three-pointers, Ray Victor contributed 15.This is the second win in two games that Guyana have recorded – the first being a 93-64 blow-out victory over Grenada. In that match-up, Kevon Wiggins’ 18 points and Shaine Webster’s 16 points allowed the Guyanese team to get away from Grenada at an early stage in the game, a lead that the Grenadian team were never really able to recover from.In their next CBC encounter, the national team will play Suriname later today at 21:00h.
1 Manchester City got their Premier League title defence off to a winning start with a 2-0 win at Newcastle, though Manuel Pellegrini will know his side needs to improve over the course of the season.The difference between the two sides was simple; finishing. The Blues had it and Alan Pardew’s side definitely did not.In terms of the chances, the hosts matched their illustrious opponents, but when it mattered most it was David Silva who was on the money, polishing off Edin Dzeko’s beautiful backheeled lay-off shortly before half-time.And as the Magpies laid siege to City’s goal late on, there was little surprise when substitute Sergio Aguero tucked away a second deep into injury-time in what was almost a carbon copy of last season’s 2-0 win at St James’ Park for the visitors.Following their unusually meek showing in the 3-0 Community Shield defeat to Arsenal, Manchester City rocked up on Tyneside looking in a far more boisterous mood.Slick passing had the Magpies under the cosh and it was little surprise when the first real chance fell City’s way with just five minutes gone.Stevan Jovetic’s deft chip caught the Newcastle defence out and Dzeko just couldn’t make a good enough connection to beat Tim Krul’s right glove.Newcastle looked flustered but were able to counter rapidly, though without producing much in the way of end product.At the other end, City’s class in the final third was all too obvious when Samir Nasri tested Krul’s palms with a rasping effort.Newcastle fielded four debutants in Remy Cabella, Emmanuel Riviere, Daryl Janmaat and Jack Colback, and it was the dazzling Montpellier man who looked the most threatening.The fearless Frenchman consistently found joy in taking on his man and trying the unexpected, most notably when he tried to chip Joe Hart from the edge of the box – his effort just drifting on to the roof of the net.That moment served to wake up Newcastle’s attack and it was fellow new arrival, Riviere, who demonstrated both the positives and negatives of his game.The new arrival from Monaco was leading the Magpies’ frontline and displayed superb skill to pluck a ball from the heavens, only to ruin the moment by wildly shooting from 35 yards when a one-on-one with Vincent Kompany was opening up.And that set the tone for the 24-year-old’s day in front of goal. Twice more in quick succession he found great positions, but wasted the chances by flashing shots wide.Newcastle fans will be impressed with Riviere’s link up play, but will certainly be hoping his difficult day in front of goal is just a one-off, if they are to trouble the top eight this season.And the new boy’s lack of composure would soon cost the hosts dear, when the Premier League champions showed how it’s done as Silva fired City ahead from a beautifully worked goal.The whole move belonged to Dzeko, whose silky backheel found the Spaniard in the box to easily slot the ball under Krul just before the break.That one moment encapsulated the differences between the two sides and what money can buy you in the Premier League.But the Tyneside club refused to be downhearted and Cabella fast endeared himself to the St James’ Park faithful with his tireless running and box of tricks.Meaningful chances, however, were the slim pickings offered to Newcastle, and when one finally did fall to them, via a bout of pinball wizard in the City box, Riviere just fell short of steering the ball past Hart.Paul Dummett was next to go close for Newcastle, somehow sending a header over the bar from an excellent Colback free-kick when Hart had raced out of his box into no man’s land.In stark contrast, City looked capable of scoring whenever they saw fit and Yaya Toure almost did just that, bending a free-kick only inches over the bar.Pardew gambled at the end throwing on young winger Rolando Aarons, who had impressed in pre-season, and Spanish striker Ayoze Perez.Both teenagers immediately caused the Blues’ tiring legs problems and the latter when desperately close to equalising as he cut inside his marker and sent a deflected effort inches past the far post.And the match was summed up perfectly right at the death as Moussa Sissoko squandered Newcastle’s best opportunity, firing wildly over when well placed, before Aguero raced up the other end, forced a saved from Krul and turned in the rebound.City are off to a winning start and while Newcastle will be pleased by their performance, signing a good striker surely remains a priority for Pardew. Manchester City’s David Silva celebrates scoring the winner against Newcastle