Rio de Janeiro, May 21: World football players union FIFPro has asked FIFA to allow Peru captain Paolo Guerrero to play in the World Cup despite a doping ban.Guerrero, who tested positive for cocaine metabolite benzoylecgonine last October, had his six-month ban extended to 14 months last week following an appeal by the World Anti-Doping Agency.In a social media post, FIFPro said it hoped “for a breakthrough in the next 24-48 hours.”Last Monday’s decision by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) rules the 34-year-old Flamengo striker out of the World Cup in Russia, which starts on June 14.Peru qualified for the tournament for the first time in 36 years by beating New Zealand in an inter-continental playoff last November.Guerrero, who says he unwittingly consumed the substance in contaminated tea, has said his lawyers are “considering all options” to contest the CAS decision and clear his name.FIFPro last week described the ruling as disproportionate and inconsistent with the facts presented during the case. IANS
O Neill feels it will be tight to qualify from Group D even though they face familier opponents They’ve been drawn with sides including Wales and Serbia, as well as Austria , Georgia and Moldova.
Roberts offered that Hill’s fiery nature on the mound might be getting in his way, causing him to focus too much on “some grounders that had eyes” in the first innings rather than moving to the next pitch. Honeycutt explained that Hill has had to fight a number of things since spring training (including his recurring blister problem) that have prevented him from getting “on a regular roll.”“We’ve seen good innings then bad innings,” Honeycutt said. “So it’s there. It’s just the consistency part.”The second inning was another bad inning. Hill gave up an RBI double to Jose Ramirez and a 414-foot home run to Encarnacion.He did make it through two more uneventful innings but his pitch count was at 93 as he took the mound for the fifth inning. The Dodgers had closed to within a run by then thanks to Cody Bellinger’s 18th home run of the season in the fourth inning then back-to-back doubles by Joc Pederson and Yasiel Puig plus a two-run home run by Chris Taylor in the fifth.That was the high point of the afternoon for the Dodgers.With Kenta Maeda no longer a long reliever – he will start Sunday in order to give the rest of the rotation an extra day’s rest – Roberts sent Hill back out for the fifth. He walked the first batter he faced and gave up a single to Carlos Santana before Ross Stripling replaced Hill. Lonnie Chisenhall launched Stripling’s second pitch into the right field seats for a three-run home run. The Indians added three more in the sixth to break the game open.“I think his value and any top-end starter is to give you a chance to win , No. 1, but also take care of the ’pen on days that he starts. He’s clearly aware of that,” Roberts said of Hill’s failure Thursday.“For us to win a championship, he’s got to be good and be in the rotation. But obviously he knows he’s got to get better and he’s trying.” Acquired at the trade deadline last season in a deal that cost the Dodgers three top pitching prospects and re-signed to a three-year, $48 million contract this past winter, the Dodgers envisioned Hill being a dominant starter to pair with Clayton Kershaw. They have seen only flashes of that – and none of it this season.The seven runs charged to Hill are the most he has allowed in a game since June 30, 2009 for the Baltimore Orioles (when he gave up nine runs in 3 1/3 innings) and raised his ERA through eight starts this season to 5.14 with an unsightly 1.69 WHIP bloated by 23 walks and four hit batters in only 35 innings. He has yet to throw a pitch in the sixth inning of a game this season – despite throwing more pitches Thursday (105) than he has in a start since May 2016.“There are no excuses,” Hill said, hitting himself harder than the Indians did during a three-run first inning that featured three consecutive ground ball singles, a hit batter, a bases-loaded walk and an infield single. “At the end of the day, when you stink, you stink and I’m not making any excuses for that.“Results obviously need to be better, at the end of the day – striking the curveball better, sequences, getting ahead with the curveball, being able to actually have that work for you would be huge for me. I’m missing a little bit on that right now. Other than that, I don’t think it has anything to do with mechanics. I don’t think it has anything to do with anything physically. I don’t think it’s anything mentally. It’s just about going out there and making better pitches. That’s it.”Dodgers manager Dave Roberts and pitching coach Rick Honeycutt were much less effective in trying to explain Hill’s struggles this season. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error CLEVELAND >> After giving up seven runs in the Dodgers’ 12-5 loss to the Cleveland Indians on Thursday afternoon, Rich Hill dismissed physical issues, mechanical problems in his delivery and a lack of focus or composure as being responsible for his season-long struggles.So what is the problem?“Sucking,” Hill said, his normally affable personality replaced by disgust and disappointment with the latest in a string of starts that have fallen far short of his and the Dodgers’ expectations.“I mean, that’s really it. At the end of the day, that’s what it is.”
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Kings XI Punjab opener Hashim Amla feels he is more comfortable with the T20 format now after playing in his maiden Indian Premier League season and said that there is no reason why conventional batsmen like him can’t be successful in the shortest format.Amla was branded as a Test specialist early on in his career but 12 years after making his international debut, he is a valuable asset for the team across all formats. To add to that, his recent run of form in T20s has clearly shown how well he has adjusted to the slam bang version of the game.’Basics remain the same in T20s'”There has been a lot of T20 cricket of late and that helps. Yes you do try to hit a few, innovate but the basics remain the same,” said Amla, who was roped in as a late replacement for Shaun Marsh at Kings XI.He feels the T20 format is not just for power hitters, something well illustrated by Indian star Virat Kohli, who yesterday broke the record for the highest-runs scored in an IPL season including an unprecedented three centuries.’T20s not always about power-hitting'”Everyone has a different approach but the basics remain the same. Everyone is trying to get better. You have players who have more power and there are players, who play according to the situation. Power hitting or any other way, you have to get the job done.”Initially (as a conventional batsman) it does take a little bit of time but with so much cricket happening in all formats, it has allowed us the opportunity to adjust as quickly as possible,” explained 33-year-old.advertisementSouth Africa did not have a memorable World T20 but Amla ended the tournament with couple of half centuries. He has carried that form into his maiden IPL and in the team’s last outing, smashed 96 off 56 balls, albeit in a losing cause.Though his team is already out of the tournament, Amla wants to make the most of his debut IPL season.’Always wanted to play in IPL’Was he hurt at not being given the opportunity to play in IPL all these years?”I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. This year was a blessing in disguise. I got to spend a month at home after the World T20. I had always wanted to play in the IPL but there were always other things to do.”It was nice to get a month with the family. We (South Africa) have the tour to West Indies coming up. Hopefully, I will get some runs under my belt before the international season begins,” added Amla, who stepped down as Test captain in January to focus more on his game.