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Aussie basketball trio banned over ugly brawl and overseas clubs enter chase for Bolt

Staff writers, July 20, 2018 5:07AM News Corp Australia Network

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Philippines and Australian basketball players fight during the World Cup qualifer. Picture: AP media_cameraPhilippines and Australian basketball players fight during the World Cup qualifer. Picture: AP

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BASKETBALL: Basketball Australia is unlikely to appeal the bans handed down to three players — Daniel Kickert, Thon Maker and Chris Goulding — for their roles in the ugly brawl* with the Philippines in the World Cup qualifier in Manila on July 2.

Kickert, who started the fight with his stray* elbow, was hardest hit, suspended for five international games. Maker copped a three-match sanction while Goulding was unlucky to be outed for one match given he was attacked by Philippine players and staff.

The game’s governing body FIBA also suspended 10 Philippines players for a total of 35 games, an assistant coach got a three-game ban, while head coach Vincent ‘Chot’ Reyes was suspended for one game and fined.

Basketball Australia must pay a fine of $135,000 for removing floor signs during training and its role in the third-quarter incident.

Usain Bolt in action.
media_cameraUsain Bolt in action.

SOCCER: The publicity around Usain Bolt’s proposed trial at the Central Coast Mariners could cost the A-League club the chance to host the Jamaican sprint star’s switch to football.

Clubs from around the world have been alerted to the potential riches on offer by signing Bolt, with the Mariners now facing a battle just to get their planned six-week trial over the line.

It is understood teams in Turkey, Hungary and the United States are among those to have entered the race for the eight-time Olympic champion. Some of them are keen to offer Bolt a contract straight away, rather than put him through his paces first as the Mariners intend to do.

Central Coast CEO Shaun Mielekamp will fly to London this weekend to try and seal the deal with Bolt.

Matildas gun Sam Kerr has won an ESPY award. Picture: Michael Klein
media_cameraMatildas gun Sam Kerr has won an ESPY award. Picture: Michael Klein

SOCCER: Matildas star Sam Kerr has added another award to her list of achievements after being named the best international women’s soccer player at the ESPYS. The 24-year-old was the only Australian to claim an award with NBA basketballer Ben Simmons beaten by Utah Jazz’s Donovan Mitchell for best breakthrough athlete and Stephanie Gilmore overlooked in favour of snowboarder Chloe Kim for best female action sports athlete.

Kerr, who plays in America’s National Women’s Soccer League for Chicago Red Stars, became the first player to score 50 goals in the NWSL with a hat-trick* for Chicago. Kerr has scored nine goals this season and is leading the race for the golden boot.

GLOSSARY

brawl: fight

stray: wandering or not where it’s meant to be

hat-trick: three in a row

golden boot: best player award

QUICK QUIZ

1. How many Australians were banned for the basketball fight and how many games did they each get?

2. Name the other countries keen to sign Usain Bolt to play soccer.

3. Kerr became the first player in the NWSL to do what?

VCOP ACTIVITY

After reading the article, with a partner, highlight all the openers you can find in blue. Discuss if they are powerful and varied openers or not. Why do you think the journalists has used a mix of simple and power openers? Would you change any, and why?

QUESTION: Do you think Usain Bolt will play soccer in Australia or will another country steal him away?
No on-word answers. Use full sentences to explain your thinking.

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