The team will be mentored and headed by newly appointed coach Jack Kereme.Kereme said the 27 men squad boasts youth and experience with an additional six players under junior development.Regulars include Andrew Ipi, Kewa Kili, Ape Nande and Jackson Undi. PNG Hunter Timothy Lomai is also named in the squad.Kereme said with all teams aiming for the grand final spot, his plan is to take one game at a time as they look forward to their first game against Goroka Lahanis.“We finished in fourth place last season and making the grand final this season will be a bonus for the team,” said Kereme.Kereme thanked the franchise board for appointing him as head coach for the team and having the trust and confidence in him to lead the team this season.The team is: 1.Gene Markam, 2.Senis William, 3.Jackson Undi, 4.Belly Yakopa, 5.Timothy Lomai, 6.Boas Minape, 7.Daniel Tapol, 8.Sioni Mokom, 9.Samuel Samson, 10.Oliver Kerry, 11.Joe Joshua, 12. Gibson Marabe, 13.Ken Andrew, 14.Leslie David, 15.Albert Sokpe, 16.David Joseph, 17.Joshua Molsie, 18.Kewa Kili, 19.Ivan Dumu, 20. Misec Wallen, 21.Ape Nande, 22.Obert Koim, 23. Andrew Ipi, 24.Justin Ibne, 25. Nelson Rami, 26.Isaac Mel, 27.Nathan AndaJunior Development: 1.Gilmore Paul, 2.Leon Undipia, 3.Dux Micks, 5.Elvis Ayako, 6.Sorah SakaiiTeam Management: James Shix Hun – CEO, PRK Mendi Muruks, Morgan Mendpho – Team Manager Administration, Chris Lope – Team Manager, Technical, Jack Kereme – Head Coach, Undiki Andrew – Assistant Coach, Lazaeus Cajetan – Head Trainer, Thomas Undipia – Assistant Trainer, Fiebig Kilip – Technical Officer
The classy Lae Snax Tigers’ halfback slotted through a 91st minute golden point field goal to beat the Agmark Rabaul Gurias 11-10 in this afternoon’s grand final at the Sir John Guise Stadium.It was thrilling, unbelievable, heartbreaking and historic, which kept the crowd of thousands cheering all afternoon.There was some scrappy football from both sides in the opening exchanges with the match being played up the middle of the field.It was the Gurias who found their feet first.After consecutive sets, the Gurias found the try line when centre John Ragi danced around the defence to slice through and score out wide in the 15th minute.A knock on from the restart proved costly for the Gurias. The Tigers pounced on the opportunity and levelled the score through Billy Paul on the wing.Noel Joel’s successful conversion right from the sideline put the Tigers in front.Ball security was a problem for the Gurias. Despite dominating possession in the back end of the first half, numerous visits to their opponent’s only proved fruitless.This gave the Lae boys a 6-4 advantage going into the sheds at half time.The second half began in identical fashion to the end of the first with the Gurias continuing to squander opportunities to regain the lead.Weathering the storm, Simon led his side out of danger territory and the Tigers’ lead was soon extended to 10-4 after Enoch Sine proved hard to stop from close range.Now trailing by a converted try, it all looked bleak with the Gurias becoming their own worst enemy.The tide had now turned with Stanley Tepend’s men on top.But this was short-lived when a cut out pass from Brian Gispe to Jason Missian put him through a gap to race away and score under the posts 13 minutes out from the final whistle.The five-eighth took his time with the kick and booted it through to bring the score level at 10-10, which was the full time score.Going into extra time, field goal attempts from both sides fell short, forcing the match into golden point.It was all over before it started.Catching the ball from the kick off, Gispe was pulled over to the sideline.After several plays, Simon moved into position and floated the ball through the posts from the 30 metre line to win the Tigers’ back-to-back titles.With no surprise – Simon was awarded the man of the match.This was the first Digicel Cup grand final that was decided in extra time.
Renowned for his announcing, ringside commentary and chats with such stars as Hulk Hogan and Jesse Ventura, his death at 76 was announced by the WWE company.In a tweet, the company described him as “the most recognisable interviewer in sports-entertainment history.””Mean Gene I love you my brother,” wrote Hogan in his own Twitter tribute.Others to pay homage included wrestler turned actor Steve Austin, who said he was “untouchable” and “simply the best”.Wrestler Titus O’Neil called Okerlund “one of the classiest men” he’d ever met, while WWE Women’s Champion Natalya “Nattie” Neidhart said he was “one of the greatest of all time”.Born Eugene Okerlund in 1942, “Mean Gene” came to prominence by interviewing the stars of the American Wrestling Association (AWA).His nickname was coined by Jesse “The Body” Ventura, despite Okerlund being renowned for his friendly disposition.Okerlund’s long career spanned the AWA, WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) and World Championship Wrestling (WCW).He was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2006.Okerlund, who had kidney transplants in 1995 and 2004, made his last appearance on WWE TV in January 2018.Yet he continued to make personal appearances and was seen in a soft drinks commercial alongside comedian Kevin Hart last May.
Bayern Munich eased past Celtic 3-0 in the Champions League on Wednesday to hand coach Jupp Heynckes a victorious return to the competition he won with them in 2013.First-half goals from Thomas Mueller and Joshua Kimmich put them in the driving seat and Mats Hummels grabbed a third in the 51st minute to round off a dominant performance in which the 72-year-old Heynckes became the oldest coach in the competition’s history.Celtic were no match for the aggressive Bavarians, who were out to get their European campaign back on track after their 3-0 loss to Paris St Germain last month that prompted the sacking of coach Carlo Ancelotti and the return of treble-winning Heynckes.Bayern are now second outright on six points from three matches, three ahead of Celtic and three behind leaders PSG.The hosts pressed high from the start and Celtic had a lucky escape after six minutes when Bayern’s Thiago Alcantara put the ball in the net. The effort was ruled out, however, as Robert Lewandowski’s cutback was incorrectly ruled to have gone out of play.Bayern, who also crushed Freiburg 5-0 in Heynckes’ first league match on Saturday, completely overran the Celtic defence.It was only a matter of time before Bayern scored, which they did in the 17th minute when Kimmich floated in a deep cross, Lewandowski’s header was palmed wide but Mueller came in at the far post to drill home.They did not let up and Kimmich got onto the scoresheet 12 minutes later with a clever, looping header from 14 metres.Hummels, making his first Champions League appearance this season, added a third six minutes after the restart with a powerful header that gave Celtic keeper Craig Gordon no chance.The defeat for Brendan Rodgers’s team means Celtic have now failed to win any of their 11 matches in Germany.
Australia captain Steve Smith continued to be England’s Ashes nemesis on Friday as he passed 6,000 Test runs in an unbeaten knock of 44 to help his team to 193 for two at close of play on the second day of the fifth Test.The world’s top ranked batsman and Usman Khawaja batted through the final session in a 107-run partnership after openers Cameron Bancroft and David Warner had departed earlier in Australia’s reply to England’s 346.Khawaja notched a stylish 91 not out on the same ground where he made his Test debut in the corresponding fixture seven years ago but it was the wicket of Smith that England most desperately wanted.They were to be disappointed with only a couple of half chances presenting themselves as Smith sent a couple of early edges fizzing through the slips.The 28-year-old was soon looking comfortable and unfussily swatted a single to backward square to pass the 6,000 career runs mark in his 111th Test innings. Only the great Donald Bradman reached the milestone in fewer knocks.Having started the day with a brilliant diving catch in the slips to dismiss Dawid Malan, Smith walked off his home ground in the brilliant afternoon sunshine with 648 runs to his name in the series so far.“We’re stoked that he’s on our team so we don’t have to bowl at him,” Australia fast bowler Pat Cummins said of his captain.“You lose a couple of wickets and he comes out to bat. He’s just incredible, I think he’s been the real difference between the two sides.”The tourists, 3-0 down in the series with the urn already relinquished, earlier posted a competitive tally in the face of some fearsome pace bowling on the back of a hard wagging tail and some poor Australian catching.PACKED HOUSEAustralia came out after lunch to begin their innings in front of another packed house only for Stuart Broad to clean bowl Bancroft for a duck in the second over.Warner scored a measured 56 by his standards in a 85-run stand with Khawaja before was caught behind when James Anderson got the ball to move away from him.Broad’s 31 had earlier been integral to a bright morning for the tourists after the hammer blow of losing two wickets in the last couple of overs of day one.Malan (62) lasted less than half an hour after they had resumed on 233 for five, Mitchell Starc eliciting an outside edge which Smith caught brilliantly to make some amends for three spills in his otherwise impeccable series.His fast bowlers then proceeded to produce a couple of howlers with Cummins dropping Tom Curran on 21 off Nathan Lyon and, in the next over, Josh Hazlewood letting Moeen Ali off the hook with the all-rounder on 22.England’s tail made the most of the reprieves with Curran hitting a confident 39 and Moeen 30 before both fell victim to the pace of Cummins (4-80).Broad braved the short bowling almost until the scheduled lunch break before becoming spinner Lyon’s first victim of the match and the innings ended in a mix-up that resulted in Mason Crane being run-out for four in his maiden Test innings.The leg spinner later made a reasonably solid start to his test career with the ball, returning figures of 0-58.“It’s awesome to be bowling to the best players in the world,” the 20-year-old said.“Smith’s a key player for them, if we can get him and two or three others, hopefully we can get a first innings lead.”
Lionel Messi could leave Barcelona without a transfer fee if Catalonia ceded from Spain and the club did not compete in any of Europe’s top four leagues, El Mundo said on Friday, citing a clause in his new contract.Barca’s all-time top scorer signed the contract in November, seven months before his old deal expired. It runs until June 2021 and contains a 700 million euro ($843 million) buy-out clause.But according to the Spanish daily, it would also allow the five-times world player of the year to leave the club where he has spent his entire career for free if Catalonia’s independence push resulted in Barca exiting Spain’s top flight and not joining either the Premier League, the Bundesliga or Serie A.A Barca spokesman declined to comment directly on the report but added: “In the interests of confidentiality the club never comment on contracts signed with players and never will.”Messi’s management team could not immediately be reached for comment.The political crisis triggered by Catalonia’s independence drive remains unresolved after separatists won a slim parliamentary majority in a regional election last month.Argentinian Messi’s latest contract was signed on Nov. 25, before that vote but after an autumn referendum on independence that authorities in Madrid declared illegal, dissolving the region’s political institutions after they ratified it.The referendum had direct ramifications for Barcelona who, on the day that it was held, chose to play their La Liga game against Las Palmas behind closed doors in response to police violence against would-be voters.The president of La Liga, Javier Tebas, has repeatedly said Barcelona would be booted out of the Spanish league along with all other Catalan clubs in the event of independence, as only teams from Spain and Andorra are legally entitled to compete in the Spanish leagues.Barca, who have won 24 Liga titles and lead this season’s standings by nine points, said after the referendum they would not speculate on the future.However, they were “not planning for any other scenario than playing in the Spanish league. The club is competing in this competition and wants to win it.”
Bournemouth stunned Chelsea with three second-half goals in a 3-0 Premier League victory on Wednesday, inflicting on the champions their first home defeat in four months.The visitors scored on the break in the 51st minute after midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko lost the ball and Callum Wilson played a neat one-two with Jordan Ibe before slotting home.Wilson was also involved in the second goal, when he pushed the ball to Junior Stanislas who flicked it into the net off sprawling goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois in the 65th minute.Former Chelsea midfielder Nathan Ake made it three barely three minutes later, prodding the ball in from a Stanislas shot.Chelsea’s first home defeat since Sept. 30 exposed the London side’s lack of firepower, with Alvaro Morata injured, Michy Batshuayi on his way to Dortmund on loan and Olivier Giroud signed from Arsenal only a few hours before kick-off.Elsewhere, Theo Walcott scored twice in his second appearance for Everton as they beat Leicester City 2-1 at home on Wednesday to move further clear of Premier League relegation danger.Walcott, who joined Everton from Arsenal for about 20 million pounds in the current transfer window, converted Gylfi Sigurdsson’s low cross from close range after 26 minutes and volleyed home before halftime to double the lead.Jamie Vardy reduced the arrears from the penalty spot deep into the second half, following a foul by Wayne Rooney on Wilfred Ndidi, to set up a nervy finale for the hosts in which Leicester’s Kelechi Iheanacho twice hit the woodwork.Everton, who flirted with relegation danger earlier in the season, are ninth in the table while Leicester are three points above Sam Allardyce’s side in seventh.A Sam Vokes header five minutes from time earned Burnley a 1-1 draw at Newcastle United, leaving Rafa Benitez’s strugglers frustrated.Southampton and Brighton & Hove Albion, both struggling to keep their heads above water in the fight for Premier League survival, fought out a 1-1 draw at St Mary’s.
England’s Football Association (FA) is carrying out a study into the feasibility of hosting the 2030 World Cup finals, FA chairman Greg Clarke said in a statement on Wednesday.England, who hosted the World Cup in 1966, failed in their most recent attempt to win the rights for the 2018 tournament, which was held in Russia.“Last month the English FA board agreed to conduct feasibility work into the possibility of putting itself forward to be UEFA’s potential candidate to host the 2030 FIFA World Cup,” Clarke said.“This work will take place during the new season and no decision will be made until 2019.”A South American tri-nation bid involving Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay has already been announced for 2030.South American officials have said they are expecting a bid from England, possibly in alliance with the other parts of the United Kingdom.While the FA has not directly addressed the possibility of a joint bid, it is likely that their study will look into the potential benefits of such an approach — given the World Cup will expand to 48 teams in 2026.FIFA’s congress voted in June for a joint bid from the United States, Canada and Mexico to host the 2026 World Cup.Following that decision, the FA’s representative at FIFA, David Gill, said the cleaner bidding process opened up the possibility of a new England bid.Clarke dismissed the suggestion from former FA chairman David Triesman that England could step in to host the 2022 tournament if it was taken away from Qatar.“FIFA has chosen Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup and they have a duty to investigate any issues around the process that are rightly thrown into question.“Russia did a brilliant job hosting the 2018 World Cup and we support the rotation of World Cup hosting among the confederations,” said Clarke.“That would make the 2030 World Cup the next one a European nation might be able to host and not before. Anyone suggesting otherwise is acting disrespectfully to our global game and does not speak for the English FA.”
Germany’s young national team need to feel they have the complete trust of their manager to get the job done when they face Serbia in a friendly international on Wednesday before travelling to the Netherlands for their first Euro 2020 qualifier next week.Coach Joachim Low has unexpectedly dropped world champions Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and Thomas Mueller, opting to rejuvenate his squad after their first-round exit in the 2018 World Cup in Russia and their shock Nations League relegation.“We are now face a new time, a new challenge. I have to give the team the feeling that we fully trust them,” Low told a news conference on Tuesday.“We have to give them the chance to develop, take over more responsibilities and also during a rough patch offer them solutions when they make mistakes so they have the trust to go into the next months.”Eight of his 23-man squad are still eligible for national youth teams, including 19-year-old Kai Havertz, Low said.Only four have earned 30 caps or more, including the three 2014 World Cup winners left in his squad – keeper Manuel Neuer, Matthias Ginter and Toni Kroos.One of Germany’s rising stars, Serge Gnabry, will not be fit for the game against Serbia in Wolfsburg, but Loew said the Bayern Munich winger will be available for the match against the Netherlands on Sunday in Amsterdam.The coach, under mounting pressure following Germany’s worst World Cup result in 80 years, promised a faster team with better finishing – virtues that were missing last year.“What is important is to have more tempo, more dynamism, more focus up front.”“I know how to deal with pressure. I can feel what it means in the current position. We have learned from setbacks. We now need to have a completely different attitude from the year 2018.”
Results from the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday: 2nd Qualifying Round HJK (0) 2 Crvena Zvezda (0) 1 …. aggregate: 2-3 HJK win Qarabağ (1) 3 Dundalk (0) 0 …. aggregate: 4-1 Qarabağ win Rosenborg (0) 2 BATE (0) 0 …. aggregate: 3-2 Rosenborg win AIK (1) 3 Maribor (0) 2 …. full-time: 2-1 extra-time: 3-2 aggregate: 4-4 AIK win København (0) 1 The New Saints (0) 0 …. aggregate: 3-0 København win