Sporting Digest: Rugby Union

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The Independent Online
Tim Horan, who still has a long way to go to recover from a crippling knee injury suffered playing for Queensland in Natal six months ago, was yesterday included in the preliminary Australian squad for the defence of the World Cup in South Africa next May.

Newport have re-signed the utility back Duncan Hughes three months after he left for their Heineken League First Division rivals Llanelli. The Welsh Under- 21 international is likely to come straight into the first team in place of the outside-half, Byron Hayward, who will be out for five weeks with a spinal injury.

AUSTRALIA (Provisional World Cup squad): Full-backs: A Apps, M Burke, T Kelaher, M Pini. Wings: D Campese, D Junee, B Lea, A Murdoch, J Roff, D Smith. Centres: D Herbert, T Horan, P Howard, J Little, J Madz, M O'Connor.

Outside-halves: S Bowen, D Knox, M Lynagh. Scrum-halves: G Gregan, S Payne, P Slattery. Props: A Blades, D Crowley, A Daly, R Harry, M Hartill, E McKenzie. Hookers: M Bell, T Dalton, M Foley, P Kearns. Locks: J Eales, D Giffin, R McCall, W Waugh. Back row: M Brial, A Dempsey, F Finau, T Gavin, D Manu, W Ofahengaue, B Robinson, I Tabua, D Wilson.

WORLD CUP Asian qualifying tournament (Kuala Lumpur): Hong Kong 93 Thailand 0; Japan 67 Sri Lanka 3; Taiwan 23 Malaysia 15.

SUPER TEN Southern Hemisphere Provincial Championship draw (home team listed first): Round 1 (4-5 March 1995) Pool A: Transvaal (SA) v New South Wales (Aus), Western Province (SA) v Otago (NZ). Pool B: Queensland (Aus) v Canterbury (NZ), Auckland (NZ) v Tonga (Pacific). Round 2 (11-12 March) Pool A: NSW v Otago, Transvaal v North Harbour (NZ). Pool B: Auckland v Queensland, Orange Free State (SA) v Tonga. Round 3 (18-19 March) Pool A: N Harbour v NSW, W Province v Transvaal. Pool B: Canterbury v OFS, Tonga v Queensland. Round 4 (25-26 March) Pool A: Otago v N Harbour, NSW v W Province. Pool B: Canterbury v Auckland, Queensland v OFS. Round 5 (1-2 April) Pool A: Otago v Transvaal, N Harbour v W Province. Pool B: Tonga v Canterbury, OFS v Auckland. Final: 8- 9 April, venue tba.