Category: Sports

World Cup 2010: Portugal wing Nani ruled out of tournament with collar bone injury

Portugal have suffered a major injury blow following news that winger Nani will play no part in the World Cup after damaging his collar bone. The Manchester United player is thought to have suffered the injury in World Cup training on Friday and will be replaced in the squad by Benfica midfielder Ruben Amorim.Nanis absence will disrupt the plans of Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz, who was counting on the 23-year-old following an impressive season at Old Trafford. A statement on the Portuguese Football Federations official website read: “Following the injury to the left clavicle suffered by Nani, a daily assessment of the damage and the completion of medical tests, we have concluded he is unable to be competitive.The medical file will now be presented to the medical department of Manchester United. In light of the report, the Portuguese Football Federation, taking into account the Fifa regulations for the 2010 World Cup, will call-up Ruben Amorim as a replacement. Nani had struggled to hold down a regular first-team place at United following his switch to the Premier League from Sporting Lisbon in 2007. But he emerged from the shadow of Cristiano Ronaldo following his compatriots move to Real Madrid last summer and became an integral part of Sir Alex Fergusons side as they narrowly lost out in the title race to Chelsea last term. Amorim made 24 appearances for Benfica last season as they won the league for the first time in five years.

England v Bangladesh: Paul Collingwoods earned his rest, but hell be badly missed

Watching England warm up today, there was a overriding feeling that something was missing.

It was an eager Labrador of a player, whose spindly legs invariably protrude from a pair of shorts as he bats, bowls and fields with the sprightliness of someone 10 years younger, encourages players in his Geordie twang and makes the odd self-deprecating remark to a passing hack. I am talking of course of Paul Collingwood.Collingwood is the heart and soul of the England team, someone for whom nothing is too much trouble, who will stoically bowl in the nets when all the other players have dragged their enormous kit bags back to the dressing room, and linger afterwards for extra slip catching practice to the slow bowlers or a bit of throwing at a stump. He is never knowingly underprepared.

That is why it is right to give him a rest for this match and presumably series. He has nothing to prove and quite a lot to lose. His body is willing but his mind will be running on empty. After the exertions of the last 12 months, he will have been existing on adrenalin during the world T20. Now back in the real world he will need the nourishment of a bit of time off to rejuvenate his cricketing appetite.

There will be those who say that a month of his exertion was spent in sole self-advancement at the IPL. But his time in India wasn´t without benefit for England. He spoke before he went of the positive influences and sharing of ideas that involvement in the IPL brings, and the development of a different mindset it imbues. In short it banishes fearlessness, which, in a T20 match, translates as not worrying about losing your wicket. It was the hallmark of England´s approach and the reason they won their first world title. Keeping the scoreboard moving was more important than keeping your wicket intact. It´s a big step for naturally cautious, technique-obsessed English players to take. As a result of Collingwood, and Andy Flower´s input, they took it and it paid off. Even Kevin Pietersen reaped the benefit.

The worlds largest super-ferry

Watching England warm up today, there was a overriding feeling that something was missing.

It was an eager Labrador of a player, whose spindly legs invariably protrude from a pair of shorts as he bats, bowls and fields with the sprightliness of someone 10 years younger, encourages players in his Geordie twang and makes the odd self-deprecating remark to a passing hack. I am talking of course of Paul Collingwood.Collingwood is the heart and soul of the England team, someone for whom nothing is too much trouble, who will stoically bowl in the nets when all the other players have dragged their enormous kit bags back to the dressing room, and linger afterwards for extra slip catching practice to the slow bowlers or a bit of throwing at a stump. He is never knowingly underprepared.

That is why it is right to give him a rest for this match and presumably series. He has nothing to prove and quite a lot to lose. His body is willing but his mind will be running on empty. After the exertions of the last 12 months, he will have been existing on adrenalin during the world T20. Now back in the real world he will need the nourishment of a bit of time off to rejuvenate his cricketing appetite.

There will be those who say that a month of his exertion was spent in sole self-advancement at the IPL. But his time in India wasn´t without benefit for England. He spoke before he went of the positive influences and sharing of ideas that involvement in the IPL brings, and the development of a different mindset it imbues. In short it banishes fearlessness, which, in a T20 match, translates as not worrying about losing your wicket. It was the hallmark of England´s approach and the reason they won their first world title. Keeping the scoreboard moving was more important than keeping your wicket intact. It´s a big step for naturally cautious, technique-obsessed English players to take. As a result of Collingwood, and Andy Flower´s input, they took it and it paid off. Even Kevin Pietersen reaped the benefit.

British No 2 Alex Bogdanovic faces anxious wait at Queens

For the past eight years, a first-round defeat for Alex Bogdanovic at Wimbledon has been as much a part of the summer season as Royal Ascot or Henley, yet when the All England Club announced their first batch of wild cards for this summers Championships, the highest ranked Briton after Andy Murray was not on the list. Bogdanovic, who is ranked 166 in the world, has had eight wild cards in the past, and every time he has been unable to make the second round. The only other man to have registered eight defeats from eight appearances at the grass-court slam is Patricio Cornejo, a Chilean who played in the 1960s and 1970s.Five of the eight wild cards for the main draw of the men´s tournament were announced on Monday. Jamie Baker, the British No 3, has been given one, as have Russians Teimuraz Gabashvili and Andrey Kuznetsov, Nicholas Kiefer, of Germany, and Japan´s Kei Nishikori. If Bogdanovic does not receive one of the remaining three, he will have to enter the qualifying competition if he is to make a ninth attempt at winning at Wimbledon. If Bogdanovic was also feeling a bit unloved at Queen´s, you could hardly blame him, as he did not receive a wild card into the pre-Wimbledon AEGON Championships.

To make the main draw, Bogdanovic had come through three rounds of the qualifying competition. His opponent, Grigor Dimitrov, meanwhile, was given a wild card. By taking the first set 6-4 against the Bulgarian teenager and a former junior Wimbledon champion, Bogdanovic had already performed better than the two British players who had been given a wild card at Queen´s, as Baker lost 6-1, 6-4 to Uzbekistan´s Denis Istomin and James Ward was beaten 6-3, 7-5 by Robby Ginepri, of the United States. Rain forced the suspension of play with the scores 6-4, 3-6 and with British No 2 Bogdanovic 2-1 ahead in the third set which had gone with service. If he loses that third set against Dimitrov, Murray will be the only British player left in the singles tournament.