The Malaysian Insider :: Sports

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The Malaysian Insider :: Sports

Bin Hammam again hints at Fifa presidency bid

Posted: 18 Jan 2011 07:26 PM PST

President of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Mohamed Bin Hammam attends a news conference at the Sports Congress and Exhibition at Aspire Dome in Doha on November 17, 2010. — Reuters pic

DOHA, Jan 19 — Asian football chief Mohammed Bin Hammam hinted again yesterday that he could challenge Sepp Blatter for the Fifa presidency later this year.

Qatari Bin Hammam, who has just begun a third and final four-year term as AFC president, continues to duck straight questions on whether he will run against Blatter in June, instead dropping hints of a possible election bid.

"The thought does interest me, yes," Bin Hammam told the Kyodo news agency when asked how he felt about running for Fifa president.

"The ambition is a legitimate one, and if people think they can add to the organisation, then why not?

"I am 62 years old. I have almost worked in football administration for 40 years. And one thing I learned about sport is that competition is very healthy for the organisations — no matter what the result of the competition is, and elections are a form of competition."

Earlier this month, Bin Hammam smiled broadly and shrugged his shoulders when asked by Reuters if he would stand against Blatter, whom he has disagreed with on a number of issues.

Blatter is seeking a fourth term as the head of soccer's world governing body and was in Doha earlier this month to see one of his old adversaries Chung Mong-joon of South Korea lose his Fifa executive committee seat to the Swiss' ally Prince Ali of Jordan.

Blatter, who is so far the only candidate for the position, was also given a boost to his chances when another ally David Chung was appointed Oceania Football Confederation president at the weekend. — Reuters


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Injured England captain Lewis Moody to miss start of Six Nations

Posted: 18 Jan 2011 06:37 PM PST

England's Lewis Moody (right) is tackled by South Africa's Morne Steyn during their international friendly rugby match at Twickenham in London on November 27, 2010. — Reuters pic

LONDON, Jan 19 — England captain Lewis Moody will miss the first three games of the Six Nations championship after suffering a knee ligament injury, his club Bath said yesterday.

Bath coach Steve Meehan said that the injury-plagued flanker had suffered medial ligament damage at the weekend and would be out of up to six weeks.

Moody took over the England captaincy from Steve Borthwick for last year's tour of Australia and kept the job during the November internationals.

"It is always disappointing to lose a player and leader of Lewis's calibre but as I have consistently said good teams adapt to injuries and that is what we intend to do," England manger Martin Johnson said in a statement.

"While this could still mean Lewis plays a role in the Six Nations it does mean that another player gets the chance to step up and make it hard for him to get the shirt back."

England will name a squad replacement for Moody on January 24 and Johnson will decide his new captain in the week before the opening game of the championship when England play Wales in Cardiff on February 4.

Centre Mike Tindall is likely to be among the front-runners for the role as England host Italy on February 12 and France on February 26 before Moody's potential return for the final two games at home to Scotland and away to Ireland. — Reuters


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