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Sports Briefs

Published:Saturday | April 30, 2016 | 4:00 AM
Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo

Aussie players want to limit day-night Tests

SYDNEY (AP):

Cricket Australia's plan to stage two day-night Tests next season hit another hitch yesterday when the players' association sought a limit of one.

The initial schedule proposed that the third Test between Australia and South Africa in November at Adelaide - the venue for the only previous pink-ball Test - and the series-opener against Pakistan in Brisbane in December be day-night matches.

South African players and officials have so far resisted the idea, although Pakistan have committed to playing a day-night match.

"The feedback we are receiving from our playing group is that there still remain concerns over day-night Tests," Australian Cricketers' Association chief executive Alistair Nicholson said.

"While there is acknowledgement that this format may grow the game, at this stage, the players would prefer to only play one day-night Test in 2016-17."

Williamson confirmed as NZ Test captain

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP):

Leading batsman Kane Williamson has been confirmed as New Zealand's 29th Test cricket captain.

The 25-year-old Williamson has already captained New Zealand in 34 one-day or Twenty20 Internationals and will now succeed Brendon McCullum as captain in all three formats.

New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White said Williamson "has been a leader within the team for a long time and has already shown himself to be an extremely capable captain. He is respected by his peers and the wider cricket community for his professional approach both on and off the field and has a superb cricket brain."

Williamson said he had learnt a lot from McCullum and "the culture that he and Mike (Hesson) have cultivated has been a huge part of this team's success in recent times".

Ronaldo, Benzema to miss match

MADRID (AP):

Real Madrid forwards Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema will miss today's league match as they try to recover from injuries in time to face Manchester City in the return leg of their Champions League semi-final.

Coach Zinedine Zidane said that neither of his top two scorers was fit for the trip to Real Sociedad, where Madrid need a win to realistically remain in the Spanish league title race. Madrid trail leaders Barcelona and second-place AtlÈtico Madrid by one point, with three matches to go.

Madrid host City on Wednesday after the two sides drew 0-0 in the first leg, where Madrid clearly missed Ronaldo's spark in attack and where Benzema played only the first half.

"I am worried because each time you have a player injured it is difficult," Zidane said yesterday. "Now, the most important thing is that they completely recover because we cannot take risks with Cristiano and Karim."