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Gatland to name starting line-up for All Blacks clash

Credit: EMPICS Sport/EMPICS Sport

Wales coach Warren Gatland is due to name his starting line-up, today, for the clash against the All Blacks.

Full back Leigh Halfpenny, centre Jonathan Davies and fly-half Dan Biggar are all back in training.

Davies has not played for more than three weeks, while Halfpenny and Biggar were both injured during Wales' 33-28 defeat against Australia.

If Halfpenny is declared fit, it would leave Gatland needing to decide on a recall for the Toulon star instead of Liam Williams, who was Wales' best player in a lethargic 17-13 victory over Fiji.

In midfield he could face a straight choice between Davies and Scott Williams.

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Ex Housemartins frontman resigns from Sheffield United

Former Housemartins and Beautiful South frontman Paul Heaton has resigned as a patron of Sheffield United's Community Foundation over the club's decision to allow convicted rapist Ched Evans back to training.

The singer, who said he made the decision with "great regret", said the club needed "to lift its reputation out of the gutter".

Former Housemartins and Beautiful South frontman Paul Heaton. Credit: PA

TV presenter Charlie Webster, sixties pop star Dave Berry and Sheffield businesswoman Lindsay Graham have all resigned as patrons of the club since Evans returned to training.

Olympic athlete Jessica Ennis-Hill asked for her name to removed from a stand at the club's Bramall Lane ground if Evans returns full-time.


Gareth Bale: 'Long way to go' after Belgium draw

Gareth Bale said Wales "covered every blade of grass on the pitch" to hold Belgium to a goalless draw in their Euro 2016 qualifier in Brussels.

He told Nick Hartley: "Against probably the two favourites for the group, we've taken points off them and beat the other two teams, so it's a great start - but there's a long way to go."

Full time: Belgium 0-0 Wales

Wales have held on for a goalless draw against Belgium in their Euro 2016 qualifier in Brussels.

Chris Coleman's side produced a resilient defensive display to earn a point against a team ranked fourth in the world, and stay in a strong position in their qualifying group.

Wales are still unbeaten in Group B, on eight points after four games.

Wales battled to a draw in Brussels. Credit: PA

In the final minute of injury time, Wales goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey made a point-blank save from Christian Benteke's header, and the ball was scrambled to safety.

Gareth Bale had the visitors' best chance just after half-time, with a strong run and shot that went past the post.

In the closing stages, Hal Robson-Kanu saw his shot from the edge of the area comfortably saved.

Belgium had most of the play throughout, and Nicolas Lombaerts shot against the post in the first half, but they could not break the deadlock.

Half-time: Belgium 0-0 Wales

Wales have kept the score goalless at half-time against Belgium in Brussels.

The hosts dominated large parts of the first half, and went closest after Nicolas Lombaerts' shot hit the post from a corner, and Divock Origi failed to turn in the rebound.

Wales star Gareth Bale had earlier tested Belgian 'keeper Thibaut Courtois with a swerving free-kick, but Chris Coleman's side struggled to keep hold of possession for long.

Gareth Bale has often been isolated up front for Wales Credit: PA

Elfyn Evans finishes fifth in Wales Rally GB

Wales Rally GB has come to a close in Llandudno, after three days of racing through the forests and North and Mid Wales.

The final round of the World Rally Championship season was won by world champion Sébastien Ogier.

Welsh driver Elfyn Evans finished in an impressive fifth position.


Preview: Wales face Belgium in toughest qualifying test

Wales are preparing for their toughest test in Euro 2016 qualifying, as they face Belgium in Brussels later this afternoon.

Chris Coleman's side are currently top of Group B after victories over Cyprus and Andorra, and a draw against Bosnia-Hercegovina.

The manager has a near full-strength squad to choose from, with Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey both available, as Wales aim to qualify for their first major finals since 1958.

Wales are looking to maintain their unbeaten start to Euro 2016 qualifying. Credit: PA

Belgium are ranked fourth in the world and are favourites to win the group. They have though already dropped points, and will be without influential centre back Vincent Kompany through injury.

Our Sports Reporter Nick Hartley sent this preview from Brussels:

Gatland wants 'clarity' from Hibbard over club appearance

Warren Gatland said he will ask Richard Hibbard for an explanation over why he played for his club Gloucester on Friday night, despite being ruled out of Wales contention due to an injury.

The Wales head coach confirmed Hibbard would be coming back into his squad ahead ahead of next Saturday's game against New Zealand, but said he would be having a conversation with the 30-year-old hooker.

"I just want to get some clarity on what's going on, because, if he was fit for Wales, he would have been involved. Either he's fit or he's not."

"I don't blame Gloucester at all. Sometimes a player needs to be stronger", Gatland said, after yesterday's game against Fiji.

Gatland 'frustrated' by poor Wales performance

Wales head coach Warren Gatland admitted to feel disappointed and frustrated at his side's performance, as they scraped to a 17-13 victory over Fiji yesterday.

He pointed to the number of turnovers his side gave away, and said the backs weren't clinical enough, which meant the game became "a bit of a dogfight."

Wales face the world's top side, New Zealand, at the Millennium Stadium next Saturday. They haven't beaten the All Blacks since 1953.

Gatland said: "It's going to be tough - but you've got to be excited to be playing the best team in the world."

Full time: Braintree Town 1-0 Wrexham

Wrexham were beaten 1-0 at Braintree Town in the Conference this afternoon.

Charlie Strutton scored the only goal of the game midway through the first half, and Wrexham had Blaine Hudson sent off for a second yellow card late on.

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