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Aust keep unbeaten record in ITTF Oceania championships

first_imgFollowing on from wins against New Caledonia and New Zealand, the Australian men’s trio of Luke Cosgriff, Rohan Dhooria and Erny Tsao recorded 5-0 victories over Tahiti and Tuvalu, either side of a 3-2 success at the expense of Kiribati/Vanuatu.  The women’s team, comprising Madeline Goodsell, Peng Kaii and Sarah Tan, saw off the challenge of New Caledonia and New Zealand and made it four wins out of four after overcoming both Fiji and French Polynesia 5-0. New Zealand finished second in both the men’s and women’s team groups and will meet Australia in today’s gold medal matches. The Kiwis’ only defeats came against Australia. Tomorrow’s action is due to see the men’s singles competitors take to the tables for the first time as Oceania’s best players battle for berths at this year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The top 20 players have been split into four pools of five for the round-robin preliminary matches. Australian number one David Powell is the top seed in group one, while compatriot Wade Townsend is in group two where his biggest threat will most likely be New Zealand’s Tengteng Liu. The man to beat in group three will be Australia’s Chris Xin Yan, whose team-mates Hu Hemming and Kane Townsend are both in group four. The women’s singles competition is due to start on Wednesday (March 23) with Australia’s Jian Fang Lay, Sally Zhang, Zhenhua Dederko and Melissa Tapper the number one seeds in the four groups. Tapper is aiming to become the first Australian to appear at both the Paralympics and Olympic Games. The 25-year-old appeared in the Paralympics at London 2012 and narrowly missed out on a bronze medal, losing in the third/fourth place play-off to China’s Lei Fan in the class 10 women’s singles. Tapper has Erb’s palsy, which has caused paralysis in her right arm, but is still ranked third among able-bodied players in Australia.last_img read more

Claudio Ranieri puts hefty price tag on title-winning Foxes

first_imgLeicester City manager Claudio Ranieri’s thoughts have already turned to keeping his title-winning squad together next season, with the Italian warning potential suitors they will have to pay over the odds to lure away any of his shining lights.Leicester capped a fairytale campaign with confirmation of a first Premier League title on Monday and Ranieri wasted little time in telling his players that their interests would be best served by staying at the King Power stadium.”I would like to maintain all my players. If one of my players says to me ‘I want to go there’, I will try to keep him,” the 64-year-old told British media.”I will suggest to everybody this is a fantastic club, we won the title, we can do something good in these few years. If you go away, you don’t know what will happen. Here you are the king.”Ranieri acknowledged that bids for standouts Riyad Mahrez, N’Golo Kante and Jamie Vardy were likely to be made in the close season but suggested it would take vast sums to prise them away.”I will say: ‘Do you have enough money to buy my players?'” he added.”It is much better to stay here for one year more and see what happens. Then maybe you can go anywhere. The Champions League is another important league to compare yourself to the other champions.”The lads are like my sons. If they come to me, I say this: ‘be careful’. Leicester in the long term will go to a very high position.”advertisementThe manager also played down speculation over his own future, with Leicester reportedly prepared to improve terms on the three-year deal he signed when joining the club last July.”I have three years,” he said. “Why do I have to sign a new contract? It is not my job, my job is to go on the pitch.”last_img read more