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All Blacks must be at their best to beat Ireland, says Read

DUBLIN (Reuters) - World champions New Zealand must put on their best performance of the year if they are to beat Ireland in a meeting between rugby’s two top-ranked teams in Dublin on Saturday, said captain Kieran Read.

Lineouts not vice-captaincy on the mind of England's Itoje

LONDON (Reuters) - England forward Maro Itoje said he feels fortunate to be named vice-captain for Saturday's test match against Japan and that he will lead by example, supporting stand in skipper George Ford where he can.

Preparation, physical tussle key against All Blacks, says Ireland's Best

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Key games against top class opposition are often won in advance by getting the preparations right, said Ireland captain Rory Best on Friday ahead of their test against world champions New Zealand.

Team owner Leonsis open to sports betting, but focussed on wins

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - For Ted Leonsis, seeing his basketball and ice hockey teams win is far better than any revenue that could come from legalized sports wagering.

Bowler Rafiq a contender for Rookie of the Year award

PETALING JAYA: The sky’s the limit for southpaw bowler Rafiq Ismail.

Joel’s X factor

KUALA LUMPUR: National hockey player Joel van Huizen not only adores Professor Xavier in the X-Men movie – he also tries to emulate the good traits of his favourite character.

Joel van Huizen in action at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta - AFP

Malaysia let down by poor penalty corner conversions

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s hockey coach Roelant Oltmans was not too pleased with his team’s penalty corners’ conversion rate in the first Test match against New Zealand at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil.

Keen tussle: Malaysia’s Firhan Ashari (left) and New Zealand’s Woods Nic fight for the ball during their Test match at the National Hockey Stadium in Bukit Jalil yesterday.— FAIHAN GHANI / The Star

It’s about communication and the bowlers will roll with it

PETALING JAYA: Communication is the key to success.

Van der Flier swoops in to replace injured Leavy for Ireland

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Josh van der Flier will start for Ireland against New Zealand in Dublin on Saturday after loose-forward Dan Leavy was ruled out with injury.

CEO Brown to leave RFU at end of year

LONDON (Reuters) - Steve Brown is to step down as CEO of England's Rugby Football Union (RFU), the governing body said on Friday, days after the sport's biggest and richest union defended itself against claims by one his predecessors of poor financial management.