Archive for February 2017

Perth sweep Cairns, advance to Grand Final

Monday February 20, 2017 by  

The career of the great Mark Worthington is over and the Cairns Taipans have to wait another year for that elusive championship after the Perth Wildcats advanced to the NBL Grand Final with a 74-66 win at Perth Arena on Monday.

Perth claimed Game 2 of the NBL semi-final series by eight points after winning the opener in Cairns 91-69 on Friday.

The Taipans came out a vastly different outfit in enemy territory and put in a strong showing defensively, but offensive execution cruelled them as they posted their third-lowest score of the season. Read more

Wallabies Test locked in for Canberra

Monday February 20, 2017 by  

Test Rugby will return to Canberra for the first time in seven years when the Wallabies host Argentina at GIO Stadium in September this year.

The Australian Rugby Union (ARU) and ACT Government made the announcement today at the venue for the September 16 clash, to be played as part of the 2017 Rugby Championship.

The match will be the Wallabies’ fifth overall Test match in Canberra, and the first to be played in the Nation’s Capital since 2010. Read more

Sri Lanka secure Twenty20 series win

Sunday February 19, 2017 by  

A brilliant innings from Asela Gunaratne has helped Sri Lanka seal a final-ball victory against Australia in the second KFC Twenty20 International tonight at Geelong’s Kardinia Park, in front of more than 13,500 people.

Middle-order batsmen Asela Gunaratne’s inspirational innings helped Sri Lanka fight back and win game two of the T20 series against Australia.

After Australia claimed five wickets in Sri Lanka’s batting power play, Gunaratne’s unbeaten 84 off 46 deliveries saw Sri Lanka home by two wickets with a boundary on the final delivery.

Sri Lanka now holds an unassailable 2-0 advantage after two final-ball results in the first two matches of the series, heading into the third and final match at Adelaide Oval on Wednesday.

Earlier in the evening, Moises Henriques was the star with the bat for the hosts with an unbeaten half-century. Read more

Hawks show huge heart to force Game Three

Sunday February 19, 2017 by  

Unsung guard Mitch Norton answered the bell in crunch time to help the Illawarra Hawks defeat Adelaide 100-94 in a thrilling NBL semi-final Game Two on Sunday at WIN Entertainment Centre.

Thrashed by the 36ers in Thursday’s opening game of their best-of-three series, the Hawks responded as they have all season with their backs to the wall to set up a deciding third game in Adelaide this Thursday.

Norton stepped up with a season-high 17 points, while Tim Coenraad tallied 17 points and 10 rebounds – the second double-double of his career – in another strong performance off the bench. Read more

Sky Blues unbeaten run ends at Nineteen

Saturday February 18, 2017 by  

Sydney FC’s unbeaten run has come to an end after a solitary goal defeated the Sky Blues in the Sydney Derby.

Brendan Santalab struck midway through the first half to hand the home side the lead going into the break, before a gritty second half played out with chances for both sides but for no reward.

The Sky Blues will feel hard done by after three penalty decisions were contentiously waved away, with Alex Brosque having strong claims denied in stoppage time with the goal beckoning. Read more

City return to form as Phoenix pay heavy price

Saturday February 18, 2017 by  

A horror five-minute period sees Wellington forgo early dominance as City finish clinically at Westpac Stadium on Saturday night.

It’s a cruel facet of football that games turn on tiny margins, and Wellington Phoenix have paid the full penalty as Melbourne City bounce back to form in emphatic fashion.

With expected thunderstorms holding, Phoenix started brightly with Roy Krishna nearly finishing a fine flowing movement inside two minutes. Picking up the ball centrally he drew several defenders before feeding Kosta Barbarouses wide, whose well-whipped cross was tucked just wide by the flying Fijian at full stretch. Read more

Cotton masterclass destroys Taipans

Friday February 17, 2017 by  

He may not have been with the group for long, but Bryce Cotton showed he has Wildcat genes with a 34-point masterclass as Perth ambushed the Snakes to take Game 1 of their semi-final series 91-69 on Friday.

After going a scintillating 5/5 from downtown in his only other visit to the Cairns Convention Centre, Cotton had his deadly jumpshot on full display again to rain on Cairns’ parade and declare their championship prospects are as good as any.

The Snakes, winners of six of their past seven games coming into the night, were simply shell-shocked by American stars Cotton – who scored the most points by a Wildcat in a finals game since 2008 – and Casey Prather (22 points), who was near unstoppable in the pick-and-roll. Read more

Randle walks the walk for the Sixers

Thursday February 16, 2017 by  

Newly crowned NBL Most Valuable Player Jerome Randle put the Adelaide 36ers team on his back with 18 first-half points as the Sixers outgunned the visiting Illawarra Hawks 93-78 in Game 1 of their Semi Final series.

Randle needed to put forward his best after calling the Hawks a “dirty team” that he “didn’t like playing” against mid-week. He certainly rose to the occasion, bringing some of his Chicago A-game.

Such was his energy expenditure that he violently cramped up at the start of the fourth term, only to return at the midpoint and deal some final damage. Read more

Hodge commits to long term with Rebels

Thursday February 16, 2017 by  

Melbourne Rebels have re-signed Reece Hodge on a long-term contract which will see the reigning Rookie of the Year become the first Australian Rugby player to commit beyond the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

It was announced at the 2017 Rebels Season Launch at Crown Palladium on Thursday afternoon that the 22-year-old utility back has signed a three-year contract extension to remain in Melbourne until 2020.

“We have huge faith in Reece and see him as an important part of the club’s future so we’re thrilled that he’s agreed to call Melbourne home until 2020,” Melbourne Rebels General Manager Rugby Baden Stephenson said. Read more

Wright named the NBL’s Coach of the Year

Monday February 13, 2017 by  

The Adelaide 36ers’ Joey Wright is the recipient of the Lindsay Gaze Trophy as the 2016-17 National Basketball League Coach of the Year.

Wright becomes just the second 36ers coach to win the Award, joining Ken Cole who was honoured in 1986.

He also becomes only the third coach to win the award three times, joining Brian Goorjian (6) and Lindsay Gaze (3). Wright previously received Coach of the Year honours in 2004 and 2007 while leading the Brisbane Bullets. Read more