FIFA Plans New Rule for Football


WORLD football’s governing body, FIFA has announced plans to allow referees to halt matches for three minutes so that players suspected of sustaining a concussion can be assessed. This became necessary because of the high-profile cases of players who sustained head injury at the World Cup in Brazil. There was an incident that involved Germany’s Christoph Kramer during the final.

“The incidents at the World Cup have shown that the role of team doctors needs to be reinforced in order to ensure the correct management of potential cases of concussion in the heat of the competition,” FIFA said in a statement.

After discussion with team doctors and confederations, FIFA’s medical committee is to submit a proposal to the body’s executive committee in order to improve the protocol. “Under the proposal, whenever a suspected incident of concussion occurs, the referee will have the ability to stop the game for three minutes, allowing the relevant team doctor to complete an on the pitch assessment and decide if the player has suspected concussion. The referee will only allow the injured party to continue playing with the authorisation of the team doctor, who will have the final decision,” it said

The medical committee also reported that the World Cup in Brazil had been a “clear success from a medical perspective, with a decrease in injuries and no positive doping cases reported. The number of injuries went down from 2.7 per match at the 2002 World Cup to 1.7 per match at Brazil 2014. Compared to previous editions, fewer injuries were caused by fouls, which shows the improvements in refereeing.”

New Deal Excites Onazi


LAZIO midfielder Ogenyi Onazi has spoken of his delight after signing an improved deal to extend his stay at the Serie A outfit. According to an official statement from the club, the 21-year-old has signed a four-year deal which includes a 10-million euro release clause. The Nigeria international said that he was happy to commit to the Biancocelesti, despite the interest shown by the Premier League as well as the Bundesliga.

“I give God the glory and special thanks to everyone involved in sorting out this new deal. It’s important to know that your future at the club is sorted; I’ve always insisted that I love it here and I’m delighted to stay. My focus and desire is to give my best in the club colours and continue to enjoy the love and warmth of our fans. As a young footballer you learn every day, work tirelessly and seek to improve. I have the players, staff and the needed support to grow here,” he Onazi told BBC Sport.

The midfielder has yet to make an appearance this season, as he is still recovering from the injury he picked up at the World Cup.

Roger Federer Replaces Rafael Nadal in Indian Aces team

ROGER Federer has replaced Rafael Nadal in the inaugural International Premier Tennis League line-up. Nadal withdrew because he plans to use the off-season to prepare for 2015 after a year interrupted by injuries. Nadal has been out of action since Wimbledon with a wrist injury and plans to return in Beijing next week before playing in Shanghai, Basel, Paris and the ATP World Tour Finals in London.


The Spaniard, 28, struggled with a back injury at the start of the year and, after winning his 14th Grand Slam title at the French Open in June, lost to Nick Kyrgios in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon.

“We regret to announce that due to health reasons, Rafael Nadal will not be playing in the IPTL,” the tournament confirmed on Twitter.

Federer was cautious when the event was first announced, but has been confirmed to play in the Delhi-based Indian Aces team. The event begins on November 28, and involves current and former players including Andy Murray, Serena Williams, Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi.

Federer, 33, chose not to commit when asked about the International Premier Tennis League, IPTL, in March, saying: “I think it’s interesting, but nothing changes as a player has to decide how often he wants to play, how many matches he wants to play.”

However, the Swiss 17-time Grand Slam winner has now been named in the Indian Aces team that also includes Ana Ivanovic, Sania Mirza, Gael Monfils and seven-time Wimbledon champion Sampras.

“I’m really looking forward to making my first trip to Delhi,” said Federer.  “My team tells me that there’s a lot of tennis fans and supporters of mine in the area.”

The IPTL will be played across 16 days in four cities – Manila, Singapore, Delhi and Dubai – with the final played on December 13.

— Oct. 6, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT


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