SPORTS NEWS IN BRIEF
Former Tottenham Hotspur manager Glenn Hoddle would be interested in returning to the club to succeed the sacked Andre Villas-Boas, a source close to him revealed on Tuesday. Technical co-ordinator Tim Sherwood, a former Spurs midfielder, has been placed in interim charge of first-team affairs following Villas-Boas's dismissal as manager on Monday.
La Liga leaders Barcelona comfortably secured their place in the last 16 of the Copa del Rey with a 3-0 win over third-tier Cartagena, to seal a 7-1 win on aggregate. Cartagena threatened to embarrass their illustrious hosts when Zurdo struck the post midway through the first-half. Meanwhile, Levante beat second division Recreativo Huelva 4-0 to also progress 4-1 on aggregate.
New Zealand teams will get a chance to shake off the rust at a pre-season Trans-Tasman netball tournament in Melbourne in February. Details of the tournament from February 15-16 were unveiled on Wednesday. It is set up to host all 10 ANZ Championship teams although New Zealand's five sides are still to confirm their entry.
AGADIR - European champions Bayern Munich booked their place in the Club World Cup final with a 3-0 win over Asian champions Guangzhou Evergrande in Tuesday's semi-final in Agadir. Goals by France winger Franck Ribery, Croatia's Mario Mandzukic and Germany star Mario Goetze saw the German giants through to Saturday's final in Marrakech, Morocco.
Slovakia's Football Federation has given lengthy bans to six current and former players for fixing matches in the top league. Miroslav Vlk, the head of the federation's disciplinary committee, says two major organisers and former players of FK DAC 1904 Dunajska Streda, Ivan Ziga and Marian Dirnbach, were given 25-year bans from football on Tuesday for paying bribes to four players of the club to fix four matches this season.
Ko to contest
TEENAGE golf sensation Lydia Ko will be one of the star attractions at the women's Australian Open in Melbourne in February. The 16-year-old New Zealander has rocketed to No.4 in the world and turned professional in October. Ko finished third at the 2013 Australian Open and is looking forward to travelling to the sandbelt to tackle Victoria Golf Club.
A SHEEPISH Ryan Harris has apologised for a drunken Twitter rant he sent in the early hours after being refused entry to Crown Perth casino while celebrating Australia's Ashes victory. "Obviously I made a silly mistake this morning. I tweeted something I probably shouldn't have. It was a silly thing to do," he said.
RENI Maitua has avoided having his NRL contract torn up by Canterbury following his suspension for breaking the club's code of contract. Maitua was suspended from all duties last month after he was charged with assault of a taxidriver, putting his future in the code in doubt. But the club's board on Wednesday reinstated Maitua, who rejoined the Bulldogs this year.