All Blacks retain Bledisloe Cup with win over Wallabies in Wellington

first_imgDespite a vastly better performance than last week’s capitulation in Sydney, Australia never looked likely to win and could do little to stop the All Blacks once their irresistible catch-and-pass game clicked into gear.The result brings Australia’s losing streak under Michael Cheika to six matches – one short of the seven defeats in 2005 that eventually led to the sacking of Eddie Jones.A sold-out crowd of 35,372 was on hand at a windswept Wellington Stadium, where the Wallabies have not won for 16 years.They began with clear intent but still fell down in key areas, coughing up three lineouts and struggling to contain the slick, polished world champions, missing 27 tackles to six.Quade Cooper had a mixed showing in his first Test for almost a year and, as expected, was booed with nearly every touch.The All Blacks were not as clinical as last week but were still far too good for Australia.They led 15-9 at half-time after Australia debutant Reece Hodge nailed a 52-metre penalty shot but spent most of the second stanza in cruise control, with tries from Julian Savea and Sam Cane snuffing out any chance of an unlikely Australian comeback.Winger Israel Dagg also crossed for a first-half double, his second try set up by a scintillating Beauden Barrett run.The Wallabies barely had a sniff in attack with the All Blacks dominating possession and territory all night.The closest they came was when Nick Phipps crossed in the dying moments but lost control of the ball as he tried to touch down.Australia’s only scores were two penalties from Bernard Foley and one 35th-minute three-pointer by Hodge, who was thrown into the mix earlier than expected after veteran winger Adam Ashley-Cooper went off with concussion in the 17th minute.Two-Test lock Adam Coleman was also yellow-carded just before the interval for a late shoulder charge on Ben Smith.The Wallabies will look to recover from what has been a nightmare fortnight when they face South Africa on September 10 at Lang Park.The final Bledisloe Test will be played at Eden Park on October 22.last_img read more

Uruguay star Edinson Cavani loses fitness fight for France clash

first_img Getty Uruguay have made it to only their second World Cup quarter-final since 1970.The dual threat of Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez has been key to their success so far – but the PSG man will be missing against France. Cavani scored twice against Portugal but was then forced off with a calf issue Why isn’t Edinson Cavani playing for Uruguay against France?The Paris Saint-Germain striker picked up a knock in the win over Portugal.He netted twice in that game to fire Uruguay to the last-eight, taking his international tally to 45 goals in 105 caps.Uruguay were hopeful that the calf problem could be fixed before the showdown in Nizhny Novgorod.But Cavani is only on the bench for the clash despite training individually on Thursday – and is listed as ‘injured’ on the official team-sheet.There is no tear to his calf but Uruguay must now go into the game without their most prolific goal threat.And it remains to be seen if they risk him off the bench in such a huge game.Former Boro striker Cristhian Stuani replaced Cavani when he limped off against Portugal and comes in to replace the injured star for the quarter-final clash.talkSPORT will bring you live coverage of Uruguay vs France from 3pm. 1last_img read more

Ritu Phogat Sets Two-year Deadline to Become MMA World Champion

first_img Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. MMARitu Phogat First Published: October 25, 2019, 5:15 PM IST Kolkata: Former Indian wrestler Ritu Phogat, who is all set to make her mixed martial arts (MMA) debut next month, has given herself two years’ time to try and become India’s first world champion in the discipline.A 2016 Commonwealth Wrestling Championships gold medal winner, Ritu — who comes from the famous Phogat family of wrestlers — switched to mixed martial arts earlier this year in a bid to create history. “I used to follow mixed martial arts from 2012-13. I did not have much knowledge about it,” Ritu told IANS from Singapore on Friday.Ritu had signed with a Singapore-based MMA organisation, EVOLVE MMA, which has the highest number of world champions.”When I got the offer from them, I did not want to let go and I spoke to everyone in the family. They were very supportive.””I used to watch martial arts on YouTube from 2012. I did not know where it is trained. But I would always ask myself, why India does not have a fighter here. This was always there in my head,” said the 25-year old.Ritu is currently concentrating on improving her strength, agility, and speed. She trains twice a day on different martial arts like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, wrestling and boxing.On November 16 in the One Championship, Ritu will take on Cindy Tiong, a veteran kickboxer from Malaysia who is also making her professional mixed martial arts debut.”I am nervous. It’s my first match in the World Championship. I have confidence in my abilities and I will put my best foot forward.”Asked about her aim, Ritu, who became the first Indian to win silver at the World U-23 Wrestling Championships in 2017, said: “I want to win the World Championship belt for India. This has never been done before. I want to be the first in mixed martial arts to win that for my country. Hopefully in the next two years, I can achieve my goal. I am working really hard for that.”Ritu said she does miss wrestling, but she is focused on her goal at the moment and is not thinking about making a return in the near future.”It’s in my blood. So I do miss wrestling but here also there is training in wrestling. At the moment, all my focus is on mixed martial arts. I am not thinking too far ahead.”Ritu also spoke about cousin Vinesh Phogat who recently sealed an Olympic berth for Tokyo and is considered a bright medal prospect.”She missed her medal last time (Rio 2016) due to injury. That was heartbreaking. Now she has qualified again and the country has high hopes from her. I am hopeful that she will bring a medal for India,” Ritu concluded. last_img read more