Swiss win U-17 WC

LAGOS: Debutants Switzerland were crowned Under-17 World Cup champions here on Sunday when they defeated hosts and defending champions Nigeria 1-0 inside a packed Abuja National Stadium. Haris Seferovic gave Switzerland the title courtesy

of a 63rd minute header. Nigeria were overwhelming favourites to win their fourth Under-17 World Cup. Spain tookj third place when they defeated Colombia 1-0. Isco scored the winner in the 75th minute after Spain struggled to translate their dominance into goals. Nigerian striker Sani Emmanuel was picked as the Most Valuable Player of the tournament. He scored five goals, all as a substitute. — AFP

Langer rejoins team

SYDNEY: Retired opener Justin Langer on Monday rejoined Australia’s Test outfit as a batting coach and mentor, describing the role as an “apprenticeship”. Langer said he jumped at the chance to work

with captain Ricky Ponting and head coach Tim Nielsen. “Having just retired as a player I can think of no better apprenticeship in coaching than to work with Ricky and Tim and the Australian cricket team,” he said. Langer in July claimed legendary Australian Donald Bradman’s six-decade record for first-class runs when he moved to 28,080 with his 100th century in all competitions. — AFP

Toulalan, Abidal out

PARIS: France midfielder Jeremy Toulalan and central defender Eric Abidal have both been ruled out of Wednesday’s World Cup play-off second leg tie against Ireland because of injury. Toulalan has a groin injury while Abidal, who started Saturday’s first leg in Dublin which France won 1-0, has a thigh problem. The eventual winner of Wednesday’s Stade de France clash qualifies for the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa. — AFP

Wie claims LPGA title

GUADALAJARA: Michelle Wie fulfilled the promise she showed as a golf prodigy on Sunday, earning her first LPGA Tour victory at the Lorena Ochoa Invitational. The 20-year-old Korean-American, who turned pro at a precocious 16, fired a three-under par 69 for a two-shot triumph over Paula Creamer. Wie won with a 13-under par total of 275. She had started the day tied for the lead with fellow American Cristie Kerr. Creamer closed with a 70 to take second on 277. Morgan Pressel (67), South Korean Jiyai Shin (71) and Kerr (72) were three shots off the lead on 278. — AFP

Scots to axe Burley

GLASGOW: George Burley will lose his job as manager of Scotland before the end of this week, local media predicted on Monday after it emerged that his bosses are to discuss his future in the wake of a 3-0 friendly defeat by Wales. The Scottish Football Association (SFA) decided against dismissing Burley last month following a review of the national squad’s failure to reach the World Cup qualifying play-offs. But the manager’s future will be discussed again this week at an emergency meeting of the SFA’s top four officials: chief executive Gordon Smith, president George Peat and vice-presidents Campbell Ogilvie and Alan McRae. — AFP

Japan in ‘lucky town’

TOKYO: Japan’s national football team has picked a happy hunting ground as its base camp for next year’s World Cup finals in South Africa. They will be lodged at a plush golf resort in George where Japan’s Ai Miyazato and Rui Kitada won the inaugural women’s World Cup of Golf in 2005. “George is a lucky town for Japan,” Japan FA president Motoaki Inukai said as he toured the Fancourt hotel and country club. The Blue Samurai will be accompanied by chefs from home and they will train on a rugby ground to be replenished with turf after the rugby season. — AFP