Sports World

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sports World

Di Vaio sets sail for the Impact

Posted: 31 May 2012 03:38 AM PDT

Former Italy striker Marco Di Vaio will join MLS' newest team Montreal Impact this month, linking up with the Canadians as their designated player. The 35-year old finished his Serie A carer at Bologna last season, ending a career in Italy that saw the forward rack up 142 goals in 342 appearances.

The experienced striker will now head to the MLS to try and score the goals that help the Impact build on their impressive start to their rookie season. The former Juventus, Parma, Genoa and Lazio star's arrival at Montreal will boost their options, linking up with fellow Italian Bernardo Corradi in an all-Italian strike-force and punters who bet on soccer games are predicting a goal-filled future for the Impact.

"I have accepted with great enthusiasm the challenge of joining an enticing championship like MLS. I am extremely eager to make the entire club proud from the president to its supporters," the former Italian international said.

"It was not an easy choice to leave Bologna but I hope to be able to serve a similar role in Montreal, as I am prepared to give everything I have, including my experience and leadership for my coaches, my teammates and the organisation."

After a difficult start to the season, the Impact have begun looking more like a genuine MLS side, suffering their first loss in five matches against the in-form New York Red Bulls, defying pre season soccer betting tips that they would struggle.

Di Vaio's arrival will certainly give a boost to the entire squad, possibly giving them the sort of belief that they can start climbing up the Western Conference table. The Italian, meanwhile, will need to prove to the fans that he hasn't just joined the MLS as a final chance for a payday.

McEnroe – Don't Rule out Federer

Posted: 31 May 2012 01:57 AM PDT

Patrick McEnroe says he feels Roger Federer has a good chance of adding to his tally of Wimbledon titles, but may need to move himself up the rankings to aid his hopes.

The Swiss ace has not won a Grand Slam title since his success at the 2010 Australian Open, but hopes are high that he can add another major, this year.

Federer, who has 16 Slams to his name, ended 2011 with victory in the ATP Tour Championship at the O2 Arena, and has already won four ATP Tour titles, to date, this year.

By his incredibly high standards though, his last two appearances at SW19 have been disappointing, given that he failed to get past the quarterfinals in 2010 and 2011.

The six-time Wimbledon winner suffered a heart-breaking five-set defeat to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, last year, but his recent form gives the 30-year-old renewed hope.

Former US Davis Cup captain, McEnroe, feels a rise in his ranking will give Federer more hope of lifting another major title.

McEnroe told ESPN: "I'm actually a little more optimistic now than I've been in, say, the last year and a half. I think he's playing better.

"If he can be a second seed, going into a Grand Slam, as opposed to being a third seed, that would make - to me - his chances quite a bit better, because then he wouldn't have to necessarily go through both guys [Djokovic and Nadal]."

The former top-30 player also believes that, despite having won all four of the majors, grass is still Federer's best surface.

McEnroe added: "Obviously, Wimbledon you would think is his best chance, even though he's been picked off the last two years there. That's still the surface, where there are far fewer guys that can pick him off."

Federer is the third favourite to take the gold in Paris in the French Open tennis betting. Find out more about championship tennis, and pick up some gambling tips ahead of a busy summer of tennis on

Hussey Defends IPL Teammates

Posted: 31 May 2012 07:24 AM PDT

Kings XI Punjab acting captain David Hussey has come out in defence of his team amid allegations of corruption in the Indian Premier League.

Two of the five players suspended by the Indian cricket board (BCCI) are contracted to the Punjab team – Amit Yadav and Shalabh Srivastava – though they have not played in this year's IPL.

Hussey, deputising for the injured Adam Gilchrist, hopes the Punjab players will not be tarnished with the same brush as the suspended duo.

"Everyone in my team, everyone in Kings XI Punjab as a brand, plays with utmost integrity and if any print or TV media tries to write differently or say something differently about my team, then I will be very disappointed," Hussey said.

The cricket community on Betfair was stunned when it emerged that reporters from India TV had posed as sports agents and recorded the players saying that spot-fixing was prevalent in the competition.

T. P. Sudhindra, Mohnish Mishra and Abhinav Bali were the other cricketers suspended by the BCCI on Tuesday.

Sudhindra has played three times for the Deccan Chargers this year, while Mishra has played one game for Pune Warriors. Bali has not featured in the tournament.

India TV showed Sudhindra allegedly agreeing to bowl pre-arranged no-balls in a local amateur match, while Punjab's Srivastava apparently stated he could do the same in the IPL. Srivastava denied the accusations.

Mishra told the undercover reporters he was paid a major part of his IPL salary by Pune Warriors in illegal money, though he later apologised, saying he made the comment "casually for personal gain".

The board's investigations will be carried out by former police officer Ravi Sawani, who has previously worked for the International Cricket Council's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit.

Check out the latest England Cricket betting odds on Betfair.

Lambert – Norwich right place for Holt

Posted: 31 May 2012 05:48 AM PDT

Paul Lambert has insisted Grant Holt is at exactly the right club he needs to be if he is going to improve as a player and gain an England call-up.

Despite scoring 17 Barclays Premier League goals in his first season in the top-flight, Holt was not in new England manager Roy Hodgson's squad for this summer's European Championships.

The striker handed in a unsuccessful transfer request to the club last month, with it believed Holt felt he had missed out on Hodgson's Euro 2012 squad because he hadn't been at a bigger club.

Manger Paul Lambert has rejected that assumption however, insisting the striker needs to focus on continuing to improve at Norwich, If he does so then an England call could still come around for the former Shrewsbury front-man.

"This club fit Grant and vice-versa - he has been brilliant for this club and that should never be underestimated," said Lambert.

"If he wasn't at Norwich he might not have made the England squad, he might not have scored 17 goals.

"From our point of view Grant has been brilliant for Norwich and vice-versa and if he keeps playing the way he has next year you just don't know."

Lambert may have a point in claiming Holt and Norwich are a perfect fit, although, that may not hold much water should a bigger club come in with an offer for the powerful striker this summer. The betting certainly suggests he will move on and Interest from Rangers, as well as a number of Premier League sides, could come to fruition at some point during this summer's transfer window.

Lambert could have a real battle on his hands to hang on to Holt.

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Euro 2012 Kitman: Netherlands

Posted: 31 May 2012 07:09 AM PDT

Home: It sort of looks like the Dad’s Army opening credits have been Tangoed. Away: Another team that has opted for the insulation tape on the shoulder approach (see also Czech Republic). It works slightly better in this instance.

Euro 2012 alternative team guide: Italy

Posted: 31 May 2012 05:47 AM PDT

OTP gives you the lowdown on all the Euro 2012 teams. 10 word description: In transition right now but always in with a shout. Coach: Cesare Prandelli The slick 54-year-old impressed in a five-year stint at former club Fiorentina before taking over from Marcello Lippi in 2010. He’s just been handed a new contract, so [...]

Euro 2012 Kitman: Italy

Posted: 31 May 2012 03:02 AM PDT

Home: Nice work, Puma. The Azzurri will be donning this retro effort. The collar looks like it’s a polo-shirt style, perhaps it should be, but it still works. Away: Just OK. OTP has seen what is ostensibly a knock-off t-shirt version of this shirt by another kit manufacturer which is better than this.

Euro 2012 alternative team guide: Spain

Posted: 31 May 2012 01:33 AM PDT

OTP gives you the lowdown on all the Euro 2012 teams. 10 word description: Defending champions, World Cup winners and red / rojo hot favourites. Coach: Vicente Del Bosque Win the World Cup and you’re probably in a fairly strong position as an international coach. That’s the situation in which 61-year-old former Real Madrid boss [...]

The world’s best football celebrations just got even better

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:59 AM PDT

For far too long special effects have been the preserve of ropey Hollywood blockbusters. Thankfully, the excess of computer generated explosions, fire-breathing and walking dinosaurs has made it’s way to the football pitch. In what has to be one of the most head-shakingly brilliant videos we have seen for some time, we see some classic [...]

Brendan Rogers to become new Liverpool manager, Anfield new home of Total Football

Posted: 30 May 2012 11:46 AM PDT

Admittedly we somewhat jumped and pole-vaulted the gun last week, declaring Roberto Martinez a red hot favourite for the Anfield job after clocking him supping capuccinos with the Liverpool owner last week. Turns out no deal was made. On the contrary, a three-year deal is thought to have been signed, sealed and delivered between Swansea manager [...]

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