Shifting the Spotlight

New Zealand’s national soccer team, the All Whites, stole the limelight from its better-known rugby compatriots the All Blacks Saturday by securing a spot in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa – a refreshing change for a country whose sports pages are usually dominated by the oval-shaped ball. New Zealand defeated Bahrain 1–0 in the return leg of the Oceania-Asia playoff game, after the first leg had finished in a scoreless draw. According to the Wall Street Journal’s Gabriele Marcotti, the All Whites can thank two countries for their spot at the World Cup next year: Australia (who successfully petitioned to join the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), leaving New Zealand as “Oceania’s default juggernauts”) and USA – four of the players in the squad played college soccer in the United States, including captain Ryan Nelsen, who went to Stanford.


Tags: All Whites  Football  Rugby World Cup  Rugby World Cup (2010)  South Africa  Wall Street Journal (The)  

You Can’t Stop Sonny Bill Williams From Shining

You Can’t Stop Sonny Bill Williams From Shining

A star in rugby union and league, and now a professional boxer, Auckland-born Bill Williams, 36, reveals his inner torments and tells The Guardian’s Donald McRae what drives him on. “I get pretty emotional…