US football chief thanks Saudi leadership for supporting North American World Cup bid

President of the United States Football Carlos Cordeiro, center, thanks the Saudi leadership for backing the North American bid. (AFP)
Updated 14 June 2018
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US football chief thanks Saudi leadership for supporting North American World Cup bid

  • The US, Mexico and Canada edged out to underdogs Morocco

JEDDAH: The head of US football thanked Saudi Arabia on Wednesday for supporting North America’s winning bid to host the World Cup in 2026.

Carlos Cordeiro, President of the US Soccer Federation, expressed gratitude to King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Turki Al-Sheikh, head of the Kingdom’s sports authority, in backing the joint bid to host one of the world’s premier tournaments.

The US, Mexico and Canada edged out to underdogs Morocco in a vote of FIFA member nations in Moscow.

“I would like to thank the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, His Majesty the King, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince, and my good friend His Excellency Turki Al-Sheikh for your tremendous support of the United bid,” said Cordeiro.

“United States (is) working together with Canada and Mexico for the United bid, for your advice and your support. We were victorious today in Moscow we look forward to hosting the 2026 World Cup in North America and to receiving you and many of your fans and citizens in 2026,” Cordeiro added.

The joint North American bid defeated their north African rival by a margin of 69 votes, 134 to 65, to win the right to organise the first World Cup to be expanded to 48 teams.

The result at the FIFA Congress on the eve of the 2018 tournament means global football’s showpiece event will return to the North American continent for the first time since the United States hosted it in 1994.

Bid leader Cordeiro said his team was “humbled” by the result and predicted the tournament would put football “on a new and sustainable path for generations to come”.


Virat Kohli century leaves England facing big task to win 3rd test

Updated 21 August 2018
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Virat Kohli century leaves England facing big task to win 3rd test

NOTTINGHAM: India captain Virat Kohli kept up his brilliant summer form by hitting 103 before setting England a world-record target of 521 to win the third Test and clinch the series with two matches to spare.
Nine overs into its run chase, England reached 23-0 at stumps and still needed 498 runs to complete what would be a highly improbable victory at Trent Bridge.
The highest successful run chase in test history is 418, by West Indies against Australia in 2003.
England lead the five-match series 2-0.
Kohli has scored twice as many runs as any other player this series, with his 23rd test century adding to the 97 from the first innings to take his series average to 73.33. He made 149 in the first test at Edgbaston, and is in line to return to the top of the test batting rankings above Australia’s Steve Smith.
A day after taking 5-28, Hardik Pandya smashed an unbeaten 52 off 52 balls before India declared on 352-7 late on day three. Cheteshwar Pujara, resuming overnight alongside Kohli with India on 124-2, earlier made 72 after being dropped on 40 by Alastair Cook in the slips.
Cook (9) and Keaton Jennings (13) survived a testing spell before the close to take the target below 500. The pitch still looks good for batting, but India remains the heavy favorite.
“The pitch has quickened up a bit,” Pujara said. “It is a lot quicker and there is a lot of deviation. On day four, it won’t be easy for them to bat.”
England’s faint chances of avoiding defeat in Nottingham were hit during the first session of the day when wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow broke a bone in the middle finger of his left hand attempting to take a catch.
Bairstow didn’t return to the field — Jos Buttler took over wicketkeeping duties — and England didn’t give an indication of whether Bairstow will be asked to bat in the team’s second innings.
“Although we are a long way behind,” England assistant coach Paul Farbrace said, “we showed real effort and it was important not to lose any wickets this evening.”