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Sep 19, 2014

Trailblazer Li hangs up racquet

By Ian Ransom

(Reuters) – A typical “neighbourhood kid” toting a badminton racquet in the Yangtze river port of Wuhan, eight-year-old Li Na could have had little idea the path the Chinese state set for her might lead to tennis glory, riches and Asia’s first grand slam singles title.

Steered into a sports college to work on her badminton, Li was soon diverted into a tennis programme after coaches found her stroke-making too lusty for the gentile sport played on street-sides across the country.

Sep 19, 2014

Tennis-Trailblazer Li hangs up racquet

Sept 19 (Reuters) – A typical “neighbourhood kid” toting a badminton racquet in the Yangtze river port of Wuhan, eight-year-old Li Na could have had little idea the path the Chinese state set for her might lead to tennis glory, riches and Asia’s first grand slam singles title.

Steered into a sports college to work on her badminton, Li was soon diverted into a tennis programme after coaches found her stroke-making too lusty for the gentile sport played on street-sides across the country.

Sep 16, 2014

Speed-driven Aussie cycling given funding lifeline

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Cash-strapped national governing body Cycling Australia has had a board shake-out and received a A$2 million (US$1.81 million) lifeline to keep its Olympic programme on track after battling back from virtual insolvency.

Former International Cricket Council boss Malcolm Speed will replace outgoing president Gerry Ryan and lead a new board of bankers and business people as the sport completes a governance review and tries to generate more revenue to close the gap on big-spending cycling powers like Britain.

Sep 16, 2014

Cycling-Speed-driven Aussie cycling given funding lifeline

MELBOURNE, Sept 16 (Reuters) – Cash-strapped national governing body Cycling Australia has had a board shake-out and received a A$2 million (US$1.81 million) lifeline to keep its Olympic programme on track after battling back from virtual insolvency.

Former International Cricket Council boss Malcolm Speed will replace outgoing president Gerry Ryan and lead a new board of bankers and business people as the sport completes a governance review and tries to generate more revenue to close the gap on big-spending cycling powers like Britain.

Sep 11, 2014

Rugby-Australia aim to continue revival on Gold Coast

MELBOURNE, Sept 11 (Reuters) – The sandy beaches and glitzy night-spots of the Gold Coast have long catered to Australians coming in from the cold and so provides a suitable venue for the Wallabies to fire up their Rugby Championship hopes against Argentina on Saturday.

To the surprise of some, Australia remain in the hunt halfway through the four-nation southern hemisphere tournament courtesy of a last-gasp 24-23 win over South Africa in Perth last weekend.

Sep 10, 2014

No quick technology fix for problem bowlers – ICC

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – The ICC is cautiously optimistic that wearable sensors can provide the technological breakthrough needed to stamp out illegal bowling actions but does not expect them to be ready for trial in matches before mid-2015.

Geoff Allardice, the International Cricket Council’s general manager of cricket, told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday that there has been lots of progress in using the technology but stumbling blocks remain to deploying it in matches.

Sep 10, 2014

Cricket-No quick technology fix for problem bowlers-ICC

MELBOURNE, Sept 10 (Reuters) – The ICC is cautiously optimistic that wearable sensors can provide the technological breakthrough needed to stamp out illegal bowling actions but does not expect them to be ready for trial in matches before mid-2015.

Geoff Allardice, the International Cricket Council’s general manager of cricket, told Reuters in an interview on Wednesday that there has been lots of progress in using the technology but stumbling blocks remain to deploying it in matches.

Sep 2, 2014

Rugby-Australia halfbacks Beale, White benched for Boks

MELBOURNE, Sept 2 (Reuters) – Australia coach Ewen McKenzie has run out of patience with misfiring halfbacks Kurtley Beale and Nic White, dumping them to the bench for the Rugby Championship match against South Africa in Perth on Saturday.

The pair started in Australia’s 12-12 draw against New Zealand and the humbling 51-20 return loss at Eden Park last month but have been replaced by flyhalf Bernard Foley and his New South Wales Waratahs team mate Nick Phipps.

Aug 28, 2014

Rugby-Humbled Australia can still turn it around – Dwyer

MELBOURNE, Aug 28 (Reuters) – Australia’s Eden Park humiliation at the hands of the All Blacks ruthlessly exposed the Wallabies’ lack of depth, but Ewen McKenzie still has time to mould his team into World Cup contenders, according to former Australia coach Bob Dwyer.

The Wallabies held the All Blacks to a 12-12 draw in the first Rugby Championship match in Sydney but the 51-20 trouncing in the return match last week showed the gap between the teams remained as wide as ever.

Aug 27, 2014

Culture change helps Australia out of deep end

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Encouraging performances at the Commonwealth Games and Pan Pacific Championships have continued the resurrection of Australian swimming, but head coach Jacco Verhaeren is reluctant to declare that the sleeping giant has awakened.

Australia finished the four-day Pan Pacs at the Gold Coast on Sunday with 10 gold from 26 medals, second only to the United States’ powerful team which reaped 40 overall, including 14 gold.

    • About Ian

      "Based in home-town of Melbourne covering sports in Australia and New Zealand and a member of the Asia Sports desk. Previously covered general news and politics in Beijing with a special focus on the Beijing 2008 Olympics."
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