No excuses for Kangaroos: Woods

first_imgThe Kangaroos are training at St George’s Park National Football Centre, the home of the England Football Association, which opened in 2012 and boasts state-of-the-art facilities.”They’ve got 14 fields here, the recovery centre’s unbelievable, the gym’s crazy. It’s just – I’ve never been a part of anything that looks this amazing,” Woods said.”So we’ve got some really good resources to use, so we’ve got to back it up and play some good footy now.”It’s just crazy being here. The things we’re surrounded by, it’s unbelievable.”Woods missed Australia’s 26-6 win over New Zealand in Perth earlier this month due to his wedding, but is expected to be recalled when the Four Nations begins this weekend.The Wests Tigers skipper and NSW Origin star may have five Tests to his name so far but still admits he is in awe of some of the talent in the Kangaroos squad.”You look around and you see the likes of Johnathan Thurston, Cameron Smith, Greg Inglis, Matty Scott – it’s just crazy. You’re playing the best of the best,” he said.”So you sit there and pinch yourself some days but then again you’re thinking, ‘well I’ve got a job to do here as well’.”So I’m really looking forward to each game, and can’t wait to play with the boys.”Australia takes on Scotland on Saturday morning (6am AEDT) to kick off the 2016 Four Nations, with England facing New Zealand in the early hours of Sunday morning, Australian time.last_img read more

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Media Watch: Lifeline for Dave Taylor, Knights recruits unleashed

first_imgHaving been axed by the Toronto Wolfpack last week for breaking curfew, the man dubbed ‘Coal Train’ will be hard pressed finding an NRL contract.But the Ipswich Jets are prepared to take a gamble on the former Queensland Origin forward who’s played 181 NRL games with four clubs.Jets coach Shane Walker told NRL.com Taylor would be welcome at the Queensland Cup club.Walker runs a recruitment company and says he would find Taylor a job and even help him to buy a house to get his life back on track.“You can be at an NRL club on a minimum wage, or play at the Jets and have a job and earn equally as much without the demands,” Walker said.“Some of those sort of things we could help provide for Dave if that’s what he wants. We’d certainly be prepared to have a yarn to him.”Walker has spoken previously about Taylor and the possibility of him becoming a star five-eighth for the Jets.last_img read more

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Eddie Jones faces train abuse

first_imgJones is reported to have travelled standard class from Edinburgh to Manchester on Sunday, watching Manchester United take on Chelsea at Old Trafford before later continuing his journey to London.It is claimed Jones faced both physical and verbal abuse from others on the train and the Australian says he will review his future transport arrangements.”I try and do the right thing by the fans but if that happens then you’ve got to have a look at your own safety,” said Jones. “I never knock back a request for a selfie unless I’m racing to somewhere. I did a lot.”For me to travel on public transport, I thought was OK. I’m a human being. I don’t consider myself any different from anyone else. But I’ll make sure I won’t in future. It’s as simple as that. I can’t, because it was shown on Sunday what happens when I do.”That’s the world we live in. It wasn’t comfortable. It was a bit of both [physical and verbal]. After a loss, no I wouldn’t [catch a train again]. It’s part of the challenge.”When I came to England, I knew there were going to be challenges. As an Australian coaching England, there were always going to be challenges and that’s just one of them.”Asked whether he was surprised by the incident, Jones added: “Massively, but that’s the world we live in.”I don’t want to get into it, guys. I don’t want to make a big deal about it. It’s over and done with. We march on – we’ve got a game against France.”England face France in Paris on March 10. Photo Getty Images. Caption: England coach Eddie Joneslast_img read more

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Maroons name State of Origin I team

first_img1. Billy Slater2. Valentine Holmes3. Greg Inglis (c)4. Will Chambers5. Dane Gagai6. Cameron Munster7. Ben Hunt8. Dylan Napa9. Andrew McCullough10. Jarrod Wallace11. Gavin Cooper12. Felise Kaufusi13. Josh McGuireInterchange:14. Michael Morgan15. Josh Papalii16. Coen Hess17. Jai ArrowCoach: Kevin WaltersGreg Inglis is the new Queensland captain, succeeding Cameron Smith, who announced his retirement from representative football earlier this month after 42 Origins for Queensland and 56 Test matches for Australia.Inglis has 30 Origin appearances to his name and has scored a record 18 tries.Don’t be fooled by claims Maroons are Origin underdogsInglis to lead Maroons with actions like BeetsonIt’s a new-look Queensland team with Smith, Johnathan Thurston and Cooper Cronk all retiring from the representative scene, with Ben Hunt and Cameron Munster the new halves combination and Andrew McCullough starting at hooker.McCullough and forwards Felise Kaufusi and Jai Arrow will make their Origin debuts in game one before a crowd expected to be in excess of 80,000, with more than 55,000 general public tickets having already been sold.”I’m really excited for those players and what they can do now. It’s their Maroon jumper,” coach Kevin Walters said.Walters described halves Hunt and Munster as “the future of the Maroons”.One young gun to miss selection is Knights fullback Kalyn Ponga, with Michael Morgan preferred in the bench utility role.”No doubt he’s going to play for Queensland one day, just when that is I guess that’s in the hands of the football gods,” Walters said of Ponga.Broncos captain Darius Boyd missed selection after 28 Origin games for Queensland, with Valentine Holmes and 2017 player of the series Dane Gagai preferred on the wings, while veteran front-rower Matt Scott also missed out after 22 appearances for Queensland, with Dylan Napa and Jarrod Wallace preferred as starting props.”The worst part of my job is ringing those players (like Darius Boyd and Matt Scott) and letting them know they’re not in the team,” Walters said.”Scotty’s been playing good footy for the Cowboys but we just thought it was the best interests of the team to leave him out.”Matt Scott for mine needs to play some more football yet. I said to him by no means is he out of the picture and he can play a role in this Origin series.”He’s been playing some good football for the Cowboys but we just felt that it’s in the best interests of the team, for game one, to go without him.” Queensland selector Gene Miles acknowledged the combination of Origin’s all-time leading try-scorers Inglis and Boyd but argued Holmes’s form was more compelling.”Darius Boyd was disappointed but Valentine, some of the tries he scored in last year’s games still stay with me and just at the moment we feel he’s the best option for us on the left wing,” Walters added.”I am concerned about the goal kicking but Valentine’s kicked, Cameron Munster kicked and Ben Hunt has kicked some goals this year so we’ll be right.”‘The series opener at the MCG is expected to be played before a crowd in excess of 80,000, with more than 55,000 general public tickets having already been purchased.Witness Australia’s greatest sporting rivalry when Origin comes to the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Wednesday, June 6. Tickets available at NRL.com/tickets.last_img read more

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Scott, JT fire Cowboys to win over Brisbane

first_imgThe Cowboys’ superstars have spearheaded a two-way clinic to gain revenge over the Brisbane Broncos 27-14 in front of 21,340 fans in Townsville Friday night.But that very excellence is likely the cause of worry for Cowboy fans entering the Origin period as it gives them a taste of what they will be missing in the coming weeks with the absence of their stars.The home side received a major scare in the 25th minute when Johnathan Thurston left the field with concussion concerns, but he soon picked up where he left off – having hands in everything including the game-securing field goal which ricocheted fortuitously off the right goalpost.After a lacklustre first half, the Broncos found some spark out of the sheds, winning the territory battle and finding life when Bent Hunt crossed for his first of two second-half tries.With the Cowboys threatening close to the line late in the game JT threw an intercept straight to the hands of Brisbane centre Jack Reid who all but ran the length of the field before being chased down by Wright and Morgan. But the subsequent play had the Cowboys scrambling back, with Copley Hunt for his sixth try of the season.Hunt bagged his double, hitting an Andrew McCullough ball at pace and zigzagging his way through three Cowboy defenders to reach out and plant the footy and the game was well and truly alive.But it was Thurston in the mix again, setting up interchange Ethan Lowe running an inside line – with an ensuing field goal and a last minute runaway try to Kostjasyn making the result a formality.The Cowboys’ defensive mettle was on show in the opening minutes when a barnstorming Matt Gillett was stopped spectacularly over the line by a one-on-one tackle from fullback Michael Morgan.And minutes later, it was the Cowboys peppering the visitors’ line on the back of powerful Matt Scott running – the Test prop amassing 151 metres by the half.Thurston’s timing was on point following concerns he was out of position at five-eighth, working the inside ball and all but scoring on two separate occasions before a third inside ball found Scott who rumbled over an out of position to crash over.The pressure kept coming and was too much for Brisbane, giving up their second score in the form of a professional penalty against Corey Parker.After winger Daniel Vidot made a meal of a regulation high ball the Steeden found itself in the hands of Cowboys winger Curtis Rona. Noticing multiple left-side overlaps on the Cowboys counter-attack, the veteran Parker gave away a marker penalty against Brent Tate, Thurston subsequently taking the easy two points.The Cowboys’ domination continued off the restart when Thurston had his second line break assist, hitting Morgan running a good angle on the left side who showed some toe to set up centre Kane Linnet who crossed untouched on the inside.But that’s when North Queensland collectively held their breath. After being first to his own kick return, Thurston awkwardly met Dale Copley head first and subsequently left the field but would return with two minutes left in the half – much to the delight of the Townsville crowd.The Broncos then found some spark, winning the territory battle and looking to salvage some respect from a treacherous first half, but it was stonewalling defence taking the Cowboys into the sheds with a 14-0 advantage.North Queensland Cowboys 27 (Scott, Linnett, Lowe, Kostjasyn tries; Thurston 5 goals, field goal) def Brisbane Broncos 14 (Hunt 2, Copley tries; Parker 1 goal) at 1300SMILES Stadium. Half-time: Cowboys 14-0. Crowd: 21,340.last_img read more

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All or nothing for Hunters

first_imgThe winner of this game books the second spot in the grand final and will meet the Townsville Blackhawks next weekend.The Jets will have the momentum and are coming off a big 54-26 over last year’s champions, the Northern Pride last week.For the Hunters, they know how to beat Jets having defeated them twice this season,  winning 40-28 in round 13 and 32-14 in round 22.The game will kick off at 3pm.The team: 1. Stargroth Amean 2. Oti Bland Tony 3. Noel Zeming 4. Edward Goma 5. Adex Wera 6. Israel Eliab (c) 7. Ase Boas 8. Henry Noki 9. Wartovo Puara 10. Esau Siune 11. Nickson Borana 12. Kato Ottio 13. Timothy Lomai 14. Warren Glare 15. Atte Bina 16. Willie Minoga 17. Thompson Teteh 18. David Lapua 19. Roger Laka .last_img

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Manus and Madang qualify for Besta Cup grand final

first_imgManus defeated Central team Koupa 3 thanks to a one point difference in the penalty shootout to grab a spot in the grand final. The defending champions were leading at half time 2-1 but Koupa bounced back in the second half to draw 3-3 at full time which forced the game into extra time.However both teams beefed up defence to prevent each other from scoring as the game moved into a penalty shootout where Manus was able to score five goals while Koupa only scored four.Manus is hoping to retain the title when they take on Madang who had an easy win over home team LFA 1-0.In the womens finals, Port Moresby Soccer Association will take on Lahi in the grand final which gets underway tomorrow.last_img

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Eagles use match to assess talent

first_img“The trial match was important for us to see what we can deliver at this stage and where we can improve as we trim down the squad,” Eagles coach James Kops said after the match on Saturday.Tigers defeated the Eagles 24-16 at Rabiamul Oval in Mt Hagen.Kops said he has a crop of juniors with huge potential coming up through the local competitions and is now part of the Eagles process. “We have young and raw talents in camp that were given the opportunity in the match against the Tigers,” said Kops, who is a former Eagles and Kumuls flyer.”Tigers is a quality team with much experience and they have trained well for the season and the trial enabled us to know our strengths and weaknesses to work on before the season begins.”Kops added that the core of the team from last year is in the squad, and the club will look at how the new recruits will feature in the final squad.Eagles will host Waghi Tumbe when the season begins on April 17.Meanwhile, Tigers coach Stanley Tepend said his boys will have another trial match against an Eastern Highlands side before the Digicel Cup challenge commences.The Tigers will be on bye on April 17.last_img read more

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José Galán: “In Arabia they are crazy football players and they also know”

first_imgAnd he ate it?Yes. For a sign of respect. For them it is ugly to reject it. It wasn’t as bad as I thought, really. It has a strong taste of lamb and liver.DAILY AS ‘); return false; “class =” item-multimedia “>DAILY AS What is the strangest thing that happened to you there?On weekends I could not enter the mall with my teammate: if you go with friends you cannot. It is only for families, couples. In fact there are many stores in which Family Only puts, and a man alone cannot enter. Underwear, women, colognes. I was once kicked out of a mall for going in shorts, after training. They told me what I was doing, what I was exhibiting.Seriously?And again, in a cafeteria where I always went in the mornings, in Hail, a woman approached me to ask me where I was from, because she saw that I was a foreigner, and suddenly a man appeared shouting at me in Arabic. I hardly knew Arabic and did not understand what was happening. Those in the cafeteria, who knew me, intervened. They told him that he was a regular customer, that nothing was wrong. They were young and the young people there have another mentality. What the man was incredible, they explained to me, was that I was talking to that woman. “Do you know her? You can’t talk to women if you don’t know them.”So much? Really?In restaurants and almost everywhere there are two entrances, two areas separated by a partition: one for families and one for men. Coffee shops are separated with screens. And the trains. It is in case women want to uncover. There they can. It is private.How is life there?They open everything very late, they make life at night. Because they are more acclimatized when Ramadan arrives, they eat at night. The last prayer is at 05:30. There are five a day and they are sacred, but truly sacred. I became locked in Carrefour with the purchase! Because he caught my prayer and closed everything. They lower the traps, nobody attends to you, the whole city stays still until it ends. Once in the afternoon I agreed to train, with a game, and even the ball stopped. You can’t touch it until the prayer is over. You have to wait.And when did he make the purchase?I went from 7:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., but sometimes I didn’t realize the time and caught myself inside. Many stores throw you out. Or they leave you inside. You can’t do anything while it lasts. Others pray there. All shopping centers have an area dedicated to it. Everything revolves around prayer.Alcohol, you know, nothing. And smoking?There it is prohibited. Until the shishas. They are left in a kind of jaimas surrounded by dates, and they drink tea, and coffee. And watch football. At all hours. As in Spain, but always only men.As they are?Very hospitable You eat with the right hand, doing it with the left is disrespectful. And there almost everything is always eaten with the hands. When I arrived, I received the Al Jabalain directive and invited me to eat a very rich lamb, and they offered me the testicle of the lamb, which for them is the best part, as a present that you could not refuse. Do you follow football a lot?A lot. And incredibly local football. The Saudi is the highest level in the Middle East, with its own Madrid-Barça, Al Hilal-Al Nassr. For LaLiga there is madness, more than for the Premier. They asked you about Villarreal players even!Yes?And from Espanyol. They know everyone. And they know football, too. They have enough history. It caught my attention a lot.He is not surprised then the Super Cup there.No. It will be a sure success. Arabia has good hobbies, they encourage a lot. That the woman can enter will also help. It is an important step for football and for the opening of the country.Do they like football?I do not know. I did not speak with any. For my sake … Of course, what men know is crazy.To recognize and stop on the street?Look, on my day off I always took the car and went with the camera to see places, to do things. Once I went to Al Jubbah, a city with some Neolithic cave paintings. There they saw me and recognized me as a football player of Al Jabalain. And there was a man in a car workshop who knew that I had played the Austrian Cup final against Mané, Liverpool, and had seen me in a photo on Twitter, or Instagram, with Jonathan Soriano who, like me, in January he had signed for the best team in the country, Al Hilal …And what happened?That they opened the doors of their houses, they introduced me to the mayor, they took me to take pictures. They didn’t know what to give me! Xenon headlights for the car, tweezers, lights … Whatever it was, to show me your hospitality. It occurred to me to say that I liked dates, that there are incredible, and they told me: “Open the car.” And they brought me four full bags, ten kilos. Arabia is one of the most hospitable countries in which I have played.Do you speak english?Very little. Almost no one speaks it. I would tell you two percent. And traffic in cities is very difficult. I never saw people driving crazier. You saw many accidents every day.How is football in the stadiums?There was no woman. And that shocked you a lot. You see all men dressed in white robes. With percussion drums and many flares, which they like very much. They light many, I do not know if they are prohibited but they do look a lot in the stadiums. But women, none. Look, my mother, when I was in Qatar and Jordan, she did come to see me, it was less complicated to be visited than in Arabia, for the visa, and surely she was the only woman in the stadium.Yes?In no Muslim country in the Middle East do women usually go to the countryside that I know of. Neither in Qatar nor in Jordan nor in Arabia. In Indonesia, however, also Muslim, yes. My wife, Paloma, when she visited me was in the break and did not enter either. But, look, these Super Cup matches are going to be very good to open the doors of soccer to women in the Middle East, that there is a presence of Western women in them, working. For, little by little and from time to time, as with driving, the country opens up and they gain rights. Arabia is the purest country with Islam and the strictest with women.And how does a foreign soccer player live Ramadan there?Phew. It is hard for them. They cannot eat during the day. Nor drink. Only when the sun goes down. But we, a Brazilian, a Romanian and the other Spanish, served us food at the hotel before the game. A story happened to Hugo López and Ramadan … (laughs).Count, count.As it turns out we had a bus trip, from 08:00, many hours. And neither I nor the other Spanish soccer player of the team drank water out of respect, for solidarity with the rest, which they couldn’t. You see that they are KO and that they endure, because you are the same. But we were thirsty … Terrible! Then, the bus stopped to take a break, everyone ran off … And they started to eat and drink! Hugo and I looked at each other, we went behind, shouting at them. “But what do you do? That you are all sinning!” We get scared to see them … But, if you are traveling in Ramadan, you can eat. The Koran says so. I imagine it will be because of how the trips should have been before, on camels, through the desert. Only then you have to get it back. And we: “Well, you could have said it before, we haven’t been drinking water for six hours for you!”Tremendous.“It is best to make the life they do,” Hugo López told me when Ramadan began. And it’s true. You train at night all month, between 00:00 and 02:30, and in the end you end up with the changed dream. You have to acclimatize. But I already tell you that, in Ramadan, they behaved very well with us. They offered us food even if it was hidden. I never had a problem in Arabia. Of course, another curious thing. On the street they used to ask me, when they saw me, if I was Spanish. “Yes”. “We had Al Andalus there …” they said. “And are you a Muslim?” “Unchristian”. “Ah okay”. As long as you don’t say an atheist …center_img He is the Spanish who has played in more foreign countries, 13. Among them, Arabia …Yes (smile). Last year. From the end of January to June.And how did it get there?After going through the Atlético quarry (from 2005 to 2007) I played at Almería B (until 2010), where I coincided with Hugo López. We have kept in touch all these years. And he signed for Al Jabalain just before, with a Romanian coach, Motroc Florin, who had trained Shabab Al Ordon, my team in Jordan (2015), and he knew me too. I was cuddly …By?Because then I played in Al Shamal SC of Qatar, a country that has a blockade with Arabia. They were so tense that they almost went to war over their relationship with Iran. In fact, Arabia does not let them fly over its territory, you cannot do it directly from one country to another. From Madrid to Doha it takes another hour because you must fly above and not through Arabia.And you were leaving Qatar, of course.Well, look, thanks to the fact that I knew a Spanish boy who was in the Federation and helped me with all the paperwork. I was able to play after three days. It was to pass the physical tests and debut.Did you notice much contrast?Something that struck me as soon as I landed is that all women are in black. Absolutely all covered. The most you can see is the eyes. With a niqab that covers their heads and a black dress called abaya. Some even wear gloves, so they don’t see their hands. That shocks you a lot. It gives you enough respect. On the plane you can’t sit with a woman next to you. If there is one, they change you.How about playing the Spanish Super Cup there?Arabia is a country that is trying to open a lot. With the new prince, Mohamed Bin Salmán, more liberal. It is the first time they have opened to tourism. Before you could not go without a special visa, if you were not invited by the Government or a work visa.How is Jeddah, the city that will host it?I lived in Hail, 900 kilometers away, but Jeddah is the most open city in Saudi Arabia, rather than the capital, Riyadh. This helps foreigners go well.And the women?Well, look, when I was there, Paloma, my wife, would not have been able to visit me if we had not been married. The first thing they asked me at the club was: “Are you married?” If not, he could not come to see me. How to drive. They couldn’t until 2018! Paloma, when he came to Arabia, went with the abaya and a hijab (handkerchief that covers the hair). And, even, to bring the face in the open, they already looked differently down the street. Men, yes, but women even more.DAILY AS ‘); return false; “class =” item-multimedia “>DAILY ASlast_img read more

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Samu Saiz: “We must make good the point against Albacete”

first_imgGirona missed a golden opportunity last Sunday to place third in the table and continue to shorten the distance with the second classified, Zaragoza. In spite of this, the rojiblanco costumes are satisfied with the point harvested before the Mirandés in Anduva (1-1) because it allows them to continue with the good dynamics (they already accumulate six games without falling) and outside they have found more regularity because It is necessary to go back until January 19 to see the last setback at home, on day 24 against Tenerife (1-0). The sensations are good and morale increases in the face of an end of course that seems exciting.Pep Lluís Martí is satisfied with the response of the team in Anduva because he disrupted his starting block to give the alternative to players with less prominence in the last duels and although not all responded in the best way, in general they complied. And it is important to highlight Samu Saiz and Jonás Ramalho. Occupied the posts of Borja García, substitute, and Alcalá, sanctioned, respectively, and left good feelings. Saiz was happy for the work done, but could not hide that “we left annoyed because with the 0-1 I think we had the game on track. But we must continue working, be calm and make good point against Albacete in Montilivi. team is prepared and looking forward to doing so, “he started and then explained that “The wind, especially in the first part, did not let play. Although we endure well, strong.” Of course, it was not enough to maintain the result because in the second half, “in an isolated play they tied us.” The two goals of the match came from the penalty spot and the fact of not having managed to endure the 0-1 also left some bitter feeling in Ramalho: “I think we had the game under control and it was a shame that we missed two points. Although it is always positive to add visitors. We thought that the team that scored first was going to take all three points, but it wasn’t like that and now it’s time to prepare the duel against Albacete. “ Girona enjoys a rest day on Monday and it will not be until Tuesday when it returns to work, in La Vinya, to start preparing the game against Albacete. Martí will recover Pedro Alcalá for the axis of the defense, but he will not be able to count on Pablo Maffeo, That will cycle. Montilivi must remain a fortress (in 2020, Girona has not lost at home) to continue dreaming of direct ascent.last_img read more

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