In brief


Indian rugby players asked to eat more eggs

»India's unfancied rugby sevens side must bulk up if they hope to make an impact at next year's Commonwealth Games, eating seven meals and at least 15 eggs a day, the country's South African coach has said.

"I have told them (his players) they must eat at least 15 eggs a day, six for breakfast and the remaining nine any time, any how, during the day," the country's South African coach Norman Laker has said.

"The players have three meals a day and that's not enough. In South Africa, elite rugby players have seven meals a day."

India is rated a lowly 83rd out of the 95 teams in the International Rugby Board rankings which are currently headed by South Africa.

"Indian players weigh 72-77 kg on an average whereas the international players weigh between 88 and 100 kg. That is the weight difference you have to make up," Laker said ahead of the team's departure to South Africa for a training stint.

Australian soccer officials ban diving

»Australia soccer officials have introduced tough new laws designed to stop players trying to con referees by diving.

The Football Federation of Australia (FFA) announced on Friday it would impose two-match bans on players found guilty of diving, or "simulation", to win a penalty or have an opponent sent off.

"I think everyone -- fans, players and media -- believe that simulation is unacceptable," FFA Chief Executive Ben Buckley announced on Friday.

The FFA's judicial panel was also given new powers to review matches and hand out retrospective suspensions for incidents that were missed by the referee. Red cards can be rescinded for players wrongly sent off.

"I am sure this change will be appreciated by the whole football community," Buckley said.

Ref-attacking Chinese player gets life ban

»A footballer who led an attack on the referee after a qualifier for China's 11th National Games last weekend was banned for life by the Chinese Football Association (CFA) on Thursday.

In the latest incident to tarnish the reputation of Chinese soccer, Tianjin's Zhao Shitong chased referee He Zhibiao for over 100 metres and pushed him down to ground before being restrained by police at the end of a match against Beijing on Sunday.

Zhao was banned for life from any activity related to football, the CFA said in a statement on its website.

Several of his team-mates were also handed lengthy bans for their part in the attack on

He, who had dismissed three Tianjin players in Beijing's 3-1 victory.
Goalkeeper Li Gen and midfielder Hao Tengjiao, who chased the referee off the pitch, were each given three-year bans. Two other players were banned for 30 months, two for two years, one for 10 matches and one for five matches.

Zhang says he has a long way to go

»Zhang Lin, who became China's first male swimming world champion earlier this week, insists he has a long way to go before people can compare him with Olympic hurdler Liu Xiang.

Zhang obliterated the world record to win the men's 800 metres freestyle at the world championships in Rome on Wednesday, a victory that prompted China's media to dub him the "Liu Xiang of the pool."

Liu became China's first Olympic track champion in 2004 when he won the 110 hurdles gold.

"It's too flattering to be called that," Zhang told Friday's Titan Sports. "Liu was Olympic champion while I am not. I am still short of an Olympic gold compared to him."

Zhang said he was just focusing on his next event, Sunday's 1,500m freestyle.

"I am still myself. I won't change too much. I will just live normally and train hard," he said.

EPL offers China a helping hand

»English Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore is hoping the hosts and not just Tottenham Hotspur will ultimately be counted as winners of the first Asia Trophy to take place in mainland China this week.

Spurs were clearly the best of the four teams in the biennial pre-season tournament and deservedly became the fourth winners of the trophy after a 3-0 win over Hull City on Friday.

To focus solely on crowd figures would be missing the point of the exercise, according to Scudamore.

"A crowd itself is not the ultimate measure, as long as there is 20,000 or 30,000, that's a lot of people. It's also about creating interest and media interest," the Englishman added.

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