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Van Gaal’s new role at Ajax

Amsterdam: Louis van Gaal is to return to Ajax Amsterdam, this time as technical director, the Dutch League leaders said on Thursday.

The former Ajax, Barcelona and Dutch national team coach will start on November 1, replacing Leo Beenhakker, who left Amsterdam in June to coach America, Mexico’s richest club.Van Gaal, 52, will work with head coach Ronald Koeman managing director Arie van Eijden and head of the youth department, Danny Blind.

Koeman, an assistant to Van Gaal in 1998-99 in his Barcelona days, said: “I am firmly of the opinion that this job will be his final one. He has said goodbye to his coaching career.”

Koreans, Uzbeks to come

Hyderabad: Top Asian pugilists from South Korea and Uzbekistan have confirmed their participation in the first Afro-Asian Games beginning here from October 24.

Five Busan Asian Games gold medallists and two bronze medallists of Sydney Olympic Games from Uzbekistan have confirmed their participation, an official press release said here on Friday.

Millar paddles to gold

Hamilton: Britain’s David Millar produced a scintillating performance to claim the time trial gold medal at the cycling world championships on Thursday.

Wiping away memories of a disappointing Tour de France, Millar rocketed around the challenging 41.6 km layout in a time of 51 minutes and 17.29 seconds and left the rest of the field floundering in his wake.

By becoming the first Briton to wear the rainbow jersey since Chris Boardman captured the inaugural race against the clock in 1994, Millar validated his credentials ahead of next year’s Athens Olympics.

Carlos Bilardo steps down

Buenos Aires: Argentina’s 1986 World Cup-winning coach Carlos Bilardo resigned from his job in charge of Estudiantes on Thursday.

Club officials said Bilardo’s former teammate Carlos Pachame would replace him as coach.

“I’m not going to be sitting on the bench any more,” Bilardo said after leaving a meeting with Estudiantes directors. He blamed personal reasons for his decision. “I couldn’t lead the way I wanted because I’m at 60 per cent of my capacity. I have other things which aren’t letting me do my job well.”

Post for Webber

Suzuka: Australian Mark Webber joined Michael Schumacher on Friday as a director of Formula One’s Grand Prix Drivers' Association. A statement issued at the Japanese Grand Prix said the Jaguar driver had been unanimously voted as the fourth director of the association that acts as a voice for the 20 drivers.

The others are McLaren’s David Coulthard and Renault’s Jarno Trulli. Webber is in his second season in Formula One.

Fredericks arrives

Abuja: Olympic silver medallist Frankie Fredericks of Namibia has arrived in time for the athletics event which begins Saturday here.

An official of the local organising committee, John Atale, confirmed Fredericks’ arrival and also said the 100 and 200m specialist trained at the National Sports Complex late Thursday. Fredricks arrival has been most celebrated by the fans and officials alike.

Pig noses banned

Sao Paulo: Former South American champions Palmeiras have banned their players from parading around the pitch in fake pig noses during goal celebrations. Three players celebrated a goal in Tuesday’s Brazilian championship second division match versus Brasiliense by donning the plastic snouts.

n Cricket, India vs New Zealand — 1st Test, Day IV, live from 9.30am on DD Sports n Cricket, Australia vs Zimbabwe, 1st Test, Day III live from 7.27am on ESPN n Rugby, World Cup — Live from 2.30 pm on STAR Sports


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