Del Piero to play Juventus
Alessandro Del Piero will play against former club Juventus for the first time when he joins an A-League All Stars side for a friendly against the Serie A champion in August. Del Piero, who is now playing for Australian A-League side Sydney FC, spent 19 years with Juventus — including 11 seasons as captain — where the former Italy star scored 290 goals in 705 matches. Football Federation Australia chief David Gallop said Tuesday that “to have a club of the caliber of Juventus FC come to Sydney is a massive coup for football in Australia”.
Sociedad beat Malaga 1-0
Carlos Vela scored early and Real Sociedad hung on for a 1-0 win at Malaga on Monday to move in on the Spanish league’s last Champions League qualifying place. The Mexican striker continued perhaps the best season of his career by guiding Jose Angel Valdes’ cross into the area past goalkeeper Willy Caballero with his left foot, as the visitors went ahead after 10 minutes at the Rosaleda. Sociedad joined Villarreal on 40 points just three behind Athletic Bilbao in the race to clinch the Champions League
Almagro upset in first round
Fifth-seeded Nicolas Almagro made a shock exit from the first round of the Rio Open on Tuesday, losing 2-6, 6-3, 6-0 to Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine. The Spaniard has won 12 ATP tournaments — all on clay, and six on the annual Latin American swing. Eighth-seeded countryman Pablo Andujar had better luck, advancing against Julian Reister of Germany 6-4, 6-3. In the combined ATP-WTA event, top-seeded Klara Zakopalova of the Czech Republic won her first-round match, beating Colombia’s Mariana Duque-Marino 6-4, 6-4. Top-seeded Rafael Nadal of Spain was due to face countryman Daniel Gimeno-Traver in a late match. No. 2 David Ferrer of Spain was also to play late against Jeremy Chardy of France.
Perera stuns Bangladesh
Thisara Perera’s brilliant counter-attack inspired Sri Lanka to a 13-run victory over Bangladesh in the first one-day international in Dhaka, giving the tourists the lead in the three-match series. Perera smashed an unbeaten 80 off 57 balls to lift the tourists from a hopeless 67-8 in the 22nd over to 180 all out after Bangladesh elected to field. Sri Lanka hit back to bowl out the hosts for 167 in the 40th over of the rain-curtailed match at the Sher-e-Bangla stadium. Bangladesh were cruising at 114-2 in the 20th over when the batting came apart.
Brief scores: SL 180 all out in 40 overs (T Perera 80 n.o, S Al Hasan 2-29, A Sunny 2-31, R Hossain 2-37); Ban167 in 39.2 overs (S Rahman 62,A Mathews 3-21)
Moin not worried over contract
Pakistan coach Moin Khan is not worried about his short-term contract. Last week, Khan was appointed for the Asia Cup this month and World Twenty20 next month, both in Bangladesh. The Pakistan Cricket Board said Khan’s performance will be reviewed after those events. Khan says contracts are always “performance-oriented and if the team performs you get the continuation”. Pakistan will be led by Misbah-ul-Haq, under whom the team defeated Bangladesh in the Asia Cup final in 2012.
Halep retires injured in Dubai
Seventh-seeded Simona Halep of Romania retired with a right Achilles injury and fatigue while trailing Alize Cornet of France 6-1, 1-1, in her opening match at the Dubai Championships on Tuesday. The ninth-ranked Halep, who won the Qatar Open on Sunday, complained of an inflamed Achilles during her run to the Doha title. The WTA physiotherapists recommend Halep take 10 days off to heal the injury. Halep held serve in the first game of the second set. But after Cornet evened the score to 1-1 the Romanian determined she couldn’t play on.