BREAKING NEWS: Steve Smith ruled out of third Ashes Test following concussion

By Sports Desk August 20, 2019

Steve Smith has been ruled out of the third Ashes Test between Australia and England following his concussion at Lord's, coach Justin Langer has confirmed.

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  • Shakib stars for Bangladesh as Afghanistan are beaten again Shakib stars for Bangladesh as Afghanistan are beaten again

    Afghanistan suffered a second Twenty20 defeat in as many days as they were edged out by Bangladesh in a dress rehearsal for the tri-series final.

    Rashid Khan's men had seen a record run of 12 consecutive wins ended when they lost to Zimbabwe on Friday, and another reverse followed thanks to an inspirational knock from Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan.

    These two sides were already assured of places in Tuesday's final, with Zimbabwe out, but there was plenty for them to mull over from a topsy-turvy affair.

    Afghanistan were sent in to bat first and started steadily before collapsing from 75-0 to 96-5, Afif Hossain – who claimed 2-9 from three overs - making the crucial breakthrough.

    Shafiqullah's unbeaten 23 helped Afghanistan recover to a semi-respectable 138-7 and they looked to be in a promising position when Bangladesh struggled early on, 12-2 in the fourth over.

    But Shakib (70 not out) lifted his side, continuing to battle away even as wickets started to fall around him, with Rashid Khan taking a pair despite briefly departing with an apparent hamstring issue.

    Mosaddek Hossain joined his skipper in a strong late stand and Bangladesh reached their target with four wickets in hand and with an over to spare.

  • Antonio Brown released from Patriots contract Antonio Brown released from Patriots contract

    Antonio Brown has been released from his contract by the New England Patriots.

    The news comes after multiple sexual assault allegations surfaced since the wide receiver joined the Patriots 11 days ago following his release by the Oakland Raiders.

    Brown's former personal trainer accused him of sexual assault and rape in a civil lawsuit, while a second unidentified woman has also made allegations of sexual misconduct.

    The 31-year-old has strongly denied the accusations through his attorney and he opted against discussing the matter further when he was questioned on Thursday in his first public comments since the allegations.

    It emerged late on Thursday that the anonymous woman alleges Brown has sent threatening text messages to her following the accusations.

    A statement from a Patriots spokesperson read: "The New England Patriots are releasing Antonio Brown. We appreciate the hard work of many people over the past 11 days, but we feel that it is best to move in a different direction at this time."

    In a post on Twitter, Brown wrote: "Thanks for the opportunity appreciate @Patriots."

    The Patriots signed Brown to a one-year contract worth up to $15million after he requested his release from the Raiders.

    His time in Oakland was defined by a series of sagas that overshadowed their preparations for the 2019 season. Brown's time on the practice field for the Raiders was limited due to foot injuries sustained by wearing incorrect footwear in a cryotherapy chamber.

    The seven-time Pro Bowler then became embroiled in a dispute with the NFL over his preferred helmet being banned on safety grounds, before a heated exchange with Oakland general manager Mike Mayock, for which he was fined, led to his Raiders exit.

    Oakland acquired Brown in March in a trade with the Pittsburgh Steelers, the four-time first-team All-Pro parting with the team that drafted him following an apparent breakdown in his relationship with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

    Brown caught four passes for 56 yards and a touchdown in his lone game for the Patriots, a 43-0 win over the Miami Dolphins.

  • Rugby World Cup 2019: England have earned the right to be among the favourites – Dallaglio Rugby World Cup 2019: England have earned the right to be among the favourites – Dallaglio

    England have earned the right to be considered among the favourites for the Rugby World Cup, according to Lawrence Dallaglio.

    Eddie Jones' side, along with top-ranked Ireland, Six Nations Grand Slam champions Wales and Rugby Championship winners South Africa, have been tipped as the most likely sides to challenge holders New Zealand in Japan.

    England crashed out of their home World Cup at the first hurdle in 2015 but will aim to make amends this time around.

    They start their campaign against Tonga on Sunday, before facing the United States, Argentina and France, with Jones' men having lost just twice – both times against Wales – in 2019.

    Dallaglio lifted the Webb Ellis Cup in 2003 and sees no reason why England cannot go on to claim rugby's top prize once more.

    "They've set the bar high," the former England captain told Omnisport, speaking on behalf of Land Rover, Official Worldwide Partner of Rugby World Cup 2019.

    "There's always expectation with England in any sport, particularly rugby. We've got a history in rugby of doing well and I think they've earned that right quite frankly.

    "I think the progression under Jones has been there right the way from 2015 when he declared he didn't feel we had enough world-class players.

    "But I think on that journey over the last four years, you look at the team now and it's packed full of top-class international rugby players who have won Grand Slams, they've won the title a few times and domestic and European honours. So I think we can rightly go into this World Cup in Japan cautiously optimistic.

    "They know they are capable of beating any of the sides in the world as they showed in Dublin in the Six Nations, as they showed in the first half against New Zealand and as they've shown in games more recently against Ireland.

    "We're contenders, we're challengers and New Zealand are the team to beat. But we've got a chance."

    Pressed on what else England need to do to prove their credentials, Dallaglio conceded a World Cup triumph may be required.

    "How do you measure success in a side? It's what you win, tangibly," he added.

    "This England team have a won a couple of Slams, they've equalled the world record for international victories under Jones, so I think the one thing they need to do is win a World Cup.

    "To do that away from home would be some achievement. I'm really excited about their prospects, I'm looking forward to it. It's wide open."

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