• England 58-47 South Africa • New Zealand now face England in the semi-final
England put on their most attractive display of this World Cup as their captain, Serena Guthrie, marshalled a brilliant first-half performance in their 58-47 victory against South Africa. It gave them an 11-goal half-time lead that carried them to a comfortable win, and the Proteas were not helped by the fact that the only person who might have been able to hold Guthrie – their own captain, Bongiwe Msomi – took an awkward fall and hobbled off court after 11 minutes of play.
England finish their group top and will now face New Zealand in the semi-finals, after the Diamonds defeated the Silver Ferns by a single goal in a stunning morning game. New Zealand had fought back from a six-goal half-time deficit – but Israel Folau could only watch from the stands with everyone else as his wife, Maria, New Zealand’s go-to pressure shooter skimmed the rim with her last-second attempt to draw level.
• Chef de mission hoping for 380 athletes in Tokyo • Paralympic team to decrease slightly on Rio
Great Britain is on course to send its biggest team to an overseas Olympics, with the aim of staying in the “upper echelons” of the medal table at Tokyo 2020.
Team GB recorded their best results since 1908 when 366 athletes brought home a total of 67 medals from Rio 2016. The British Olympic Authority [BOA] predicts 378 athletes will travel to Japan, though there is caution about projecting a medal total to rival Rio.
• Holmes leads from Lowry with a string of big names well placed • Rory McIlroy reeling from nightmare round of 79
“I don’t feel like I’m the centre of attention,” insisted Rory McIlroy before a ball was struck in this, the 148th Open Championship. Well, he is now – for reasons far removed from the fairytale scenario in which McIlroy would raise the Claret Jug at the venue where he excelled as a 16-year-old. Such a memorable occasion for Northern Ireland instantly lurched towards calamity for one of its most celebrated sons.
One of the most extraordinary – and extraordinarily damaging – rounds of McIlroy’s career began with an eight and finished with a seven. The 30-year-old’s 79, eight over par, on the Open’s historic return to Royal Portrush leaves him embroiled in a desperate scrap to make the cut. That last time McIlroy opened golf’s oldest major with this score, in 2013, he lasted only two days. In four subsequent Open appearances before this wounding day on the north coast of Antrim, McIlroy had not carded higher than 71. McIlroy has not so much drifted as sunk, from one of the short-priced Open favourites to a 400-1 outsider. This was not in anyone’s script.
• Day one of four: Australia 265-3 • Perry scored 84 not out in hard day for England
The first day of women’s Test cricket in two years concluded with the series pendulum still firmly in favour of Australia, who clocked up 265 runs for the loss of only three wickets. England have to win this Test if they are to stand any chance of regaining the Ashes but already, after 100 overs of attritional cricket and with rain likely to interrupt play across the second and third days, a draw looks the most likely result.
England were yet again undone by a patient effort from Ellyse Perry, who finished unbeaten on 84 after a century partnership with Rachael Haynes for the fourth wicket, in an innings that has already sparked comparisons to her 213 not out on the last occasion of this kind, at North Sydney in 2017. Earlier in the day, Alyssa Healy and Meg Lanning had both hit maiden Test half-centuries.
At 10 past 10 the Northern Irishman was 8-1 favourite for the Open, 10 minutes later he was a 33-1 outsider scrambling to make the cut
Life comes at you fast on the links, where fortunes change as quickly as the weather. At 10 past 10, Rory McIlroy walked on to the 1st hole the 8-1 favourite for the Open, 10 minutes later he walked off it again, a 33-1 outsider, scrambling to make the cut. In between, he played one of the most dismal holes of golf of his life, and made a quadruple-bogey eight. “At that point I was thinking: ‘Well, that’s the worst that can happen, what else can go wrong?’” McIlroy said. He found out at the 16th, where he three-putted from four-feet, and the 18th, where he finished with a triple-bogey that left him eight over on 79.
After it was all over, McIlroy was asked whether he thought there was a way back from that. “There’s definitely a way back to Florida.”
Everton’s sponsors are hailed by the club for supporting community schemes, but there are concerns about how the Kenyan-Bulgarian firm profits from an online gambling craze
Barely heard of in Britain until it launched a spree of Premier League club sponsorships in 2016, the online gambling platform SportPesa has since spread its name across football, rugby, horseracing and Formula One, associating its branding with good works in Africa. At Everton, where SportPesa is the main sponsor, its name is prominent all over Goodison Park, the club has been in Kenya for a pre-season tour, and it promotes SportPesa’s “Kits for Africa” initiative, with a donation bin in the club store.
Everton’s chief executive, Denise Barrett-Baxendale, wrote in the club’s annual report: “We value our developing relationship with SportPesa, who have demonstrated a strong alignment with our values.” A spokesperson for Everton, which describes itself as “the people’s club”, said Barrett-Baxendale was referring to the sponsor’s support for the club’s extensive community work, which she herself pioneered in the deprived areas around Goodison Park.
• Issues raised after atenolol found on Crowned Eagle • No suggestion Kempton failed to fulfil its obligations
The British Horseracing Authority said on Thursday that it will “consider” concerns raised by its independent disciplinary panel after highlighting CCTV cameras at Kempton Park, one of Britain’s busiest tracks in terms of runners, do not cover every box in the “secure area” of its stables.
The lack of full CCTV coverage at Kempton was an issue for the panel during its hearing into a positive drug test for atenolol, a beta-blocker, returned by Marco Botti’s Crowned Eagle after a race at Kempton on 31 March 2018. The panel imposed no penalty on Botti at a hearing on 27 June this year, having decided that the trainer had taken “all reasonable precautions to avoid a violation of the anti-doping rules”.
Djamel Belmadi and Aliou Cissé used time in Europe to improve their sides and a tactical battle will decide fate of Algeria and Senegal
Champigny-sur-Marne is a banlieue about eight miles south-east of the centre of Paris. Algeria’s coach, Djamel Belmadi, was born there; Senegal’s coach, Aliou Cissé, moved there from Ziguinchor at the age of nine (Cissé is one day older). Since then they have performed an awkward dance, always threatening to meet and very rarely doing so.
They played against each other at youth level. They came head-to-head in a league game between Marseille and Paris Saint-Germain in February 2001, and then with their national teams two months later. Belmadi was at Southampton when Cissé was at Portsmouth but they never played against each other in England. And on Friday, on the greatest stage either has yet trod, their sides will meet in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations.
Local legend got off to a flyer in the company of promising Irish amateur James Sugrue before drifting back but revelled in a ‘fabulous’ occasion at Royal Portrush
From the moment Darren Clarke struck the first shot of thousands to follow, good and bad, in this 148th Open, the 2011 champion, a local resident no less, tried his silver-haired hardest to rekindle old memories while carrying the crowd’s understandably wild expectations. He did OK.
“I didn’t think I’d feel the way I did,” he said after a par round that flirted with the ridiculous in the first six holes. “But the support, everything from the crowds, just everything about it when I was about to hit my tee shot. Wow, it’s the Open Championship, we’re back in Portrush. It was amazing.
City that hosts Friday’s time trial has been on a doping ley line, a focal point for scandal, for almost two decades
The foie gras, strawberries and red wine have long been cleared away and in a deserted press tent in Albi, Michael Rasmussen is talking about the time he was kicked off the 2007 Tour de France with final victory in Paris in sight. In a new book, The Yellow Jersey, Rasmussen describes the humiliation and desperation of fleeing the 2007 Tour under cover of darkness after his lies over his anti-doping whereabouts status caught up with him.
Bundled into a rental car at midnight by his team boss, just hours after celebrating victory in the yellow jersey on the Col d’Aubisque, he was left alone in a remote bed and breakfast at the foot of the Pyrenees, where he contemplated suicide. “I walked around and look for some way to hang myself,” the Dane recalled. “If I’d had a gun I would have shot myself. It was almost unbelievable what they did to me considering all that I had done for them.”
• British rider outwits fellow escapees on first Pyrenean stage • Alaphilippe still in yellow, with leaders finishing together
Simon Yates, winner of the 2018 Vuelta a España, sprinted to victory ahead of Gregor Mühlberger of Austria and Pello Bilbao of Spain on the 209.5km 12th stage of the Tour de France from Toulouse to Bagneres-de-Bigorre in the French Pyrenees.
The trio were the last remaining riders from a huge 42 rider break that escaped with 170km of the stage left and slowly dwindled in numbers over the first category climbs of the Col de Peyresourde and Hourquette d’Ancizan.
Ali Issa Ahmad brings case to UN alleging he was tortured after wearing Qatar T-shirt to match
A British football fan who says he was detained and tortured while on holiday in the United Arab Emirates because he wore a Qatar shirt has lodged a legal complaint with the UN about his treatment.
In the 27-page complaint, Ali Issa Ahmad, 26, from Wolverhampton, documents his alleged torture at the hands of the UAE authorities in January and February of this year while he was visiting the country to watch Asian Cup matches.
Family of Zac Cox say a British judge will look for lessons to be learned from death in 2017
The Qatari organisation in charge of staging the 2022 World Cup has agreed to hold a wide-ranging inquiry led by a British judge into the death of a British worker during construction of a stadium for the event.
The decision, two-and-a-half years after the death of Zac Cox in January 2017, is seen as a breakthrough for campaigners disturbed by health and safety issues surrounding the building of the stadiums, even though it comes relatively close to the completion of the bulk of the construction work for the tournament.
• Representatives to discuss new contract in coming days • Lampard says Hudson-Odoi ‘can be a big player for us’
Callum Hudson-Odoi’s representatives will hold talks with Chelsea in the next few days to discuss his future at Stamford Bridge after head coach Frank Lampard admitted the teenager “can be a big player for us”.
The England forward has entered the final year of his contract but has yet to formally re-open negotiations over a new deal after handing in a transfer request in an attempt to force through a move to Bayern Munich in January. The German champions have not given up hope of signing him after seeing a new £22.5m bid turned down last month and are still hopeful that he may reject a new contract with Chelsea worth up to £100,000 a week, leaving him free to sign a pre-contract agreement with them in January.
• Four weeks suspended so forward set to return on 31 July • FA unhappy with findings and sanction and will appeal
Daniel Sturridge has been suspended for six weeks and fined £75,000 after being found guilty of breaching Football Association betting rules. An independent commission found the former Liverpool striker had given his brother inside information on a possible transfer to Sevilla for betting purposes.
Sturridge, who is without a club following his release by Liverpool, has been suspended from playing any domestic matches with immediate effect. The final four weeks of the ban are suspended, however, meaning he is free to resume his career with a new club from 31 July.
Caitlin Bassett clearly never wants to feel like she did on 15 April, 2018 ever again – the day her Australian Diamonds lost the Commonwealth Games final to England.
From the moment the Australian captain walked out on M&S Arena for her side’s pool clash with New Zealand at the Netball World Cup in Liverpool, the 31-year-old had a steely-eyed, but calm demeanour: the look of someone with a job to do, with a title on her mind.
The Spanish defender talks about Barcelona, how football became his cure and clears up rumours of liking Napalm Death
Hi Carles. Hi Small Talk.
We’re talking to you because of yoghurt, why don’t you tell us a bit about that? I am very proud to be an ambassador for the Danone Nations Cup, one of the best tournaments out there for U12s to play football. It takes place at a local level in 27 countries and the final will be played in Barcelona in October.
If Danny Tudhope can maintain his current strike-rate, it is only a matter of time before he replaces Oisin Murphy as favourite
Silvestre de Sousa has been Britain’s champion jockey on the Flat in three of the last four seasons, but he has drifted from 11-2 to 12-1 to retain the crown in the space of seven days as Oisin Murphy and, above all, Danny Tudhope have maintained a relentless pace in their pursuit of a first title. The three-runner championship race of early July is now, barring unforeseen accidents, very much down to two.
Murphy, who was a narrow favourite ahead of de Sousa at the start of the campaign in May, still heads the market on 4-6, but Tudhope, who has quietly built a five-winner lead at 71-66 before Thursday’s racing is now the rider he needs to worry about. Having been a 25-1 shot as recently as 25 June, Tudhope is now a 6-4 chance and if he can maintain his current strike-rate, it is only a matter of time before he replaces Murphy as the title favourite.
2) It’s that time of year again when we begin preparing for the World Chase Tag championships, to be held at London’s York Hall on 24 August. Here’s the final of WCT 3, and a best chase compilation from the same.
• FIA to award drivers super licence points next season • Leila Lombardi in 1976 is last woman to compete in F1
The all-female W Series has taken a major step towards its goal of a woman in a Formula One car with the announcement that from next season the FIA will award super licence points to the drivers. The points are required before any driver can compete in F1. The publicity the series has engendered has already proved positive for several competitors, who are convinced it will ultimately deliver an F1 driver.
A woman has not raced in F1 since Lella Lombardi 43 years ago. The six-race W Series season began in May, with 18 drivers taking part in the single-make F3 championship, in which they do not have to pay any costs.
Actually, read this before the toss. Megan Schutt has views and isn’t afraid to voice them. Her latest column spells out why it is plainly wrong that only Australian and English women get to play Tests and how it isn’t fair that they only get to do so every other year. Crucially, she also comes with ideas for the future.
Good morning from Taunton! We are roughly ten minutes from the toss and I come with news off the top. Three Australians are winning their baggy greens today: Ash Gardner, Tayla Vlaeminck and Sophie Molineux. For England, Amy Jones and Kirstie Gordon are set to make their Test Match bows.
For the visitors, it was a brilliant touch having Dan Christian on deck to present Gardner with the famous cap. Of course, the two of them captained the teams that toured England last summer to mark 150 years since the trailblazing Indigenous Australians visited this country to play in 1868. Mitch Starc welcomed Vlaeminck, a fellow speedster, to the fold while Belinda Clark, the interim boss of high performance and former dominant skipper, gave the speech for Molineux.
Lovely touch with Dan Christian presenting Ash Gardner’s baggy green. Tayla Vlaeminck and Sophie Molineux are also debuting, receiving their caps from Mitch Starc and Belinda Clark. Nicely done. #WomensAshespic.twitter.com/kAszvXimhy
• Defender signs five-year contract as Juve beat PSG to signing • Teenager could earn €460,000 a week after add-ons
Juventus have confirmed the signing of Matthijs de Ligt from Ajax for a fee of €75m (£67.8m), with the 19-year-old defender agreeing a five-year contract worth a basic €16m (£14.5m) a season which could rise to €24m (£21.7m) with add-ons.
Emiliano Grillo’s Open record isn’t much to write home about. A tie for 12th at Troon, but missed cuts at Birkdale and Carnoustie. But the Argentinian postal service might have some work to do this weekend if the 26-year-old’s antics down the par-five 2nd are anything to go by. A lovely second fired into the green to 20 feet, an eagle putt nearly dropping. He joins Clarke and Sugrue in the red at -1.
In goes the birdie putt, and the early Open leaderboard has a breakfast flavour so Irish it could be served with a soda farl. Meanwhile that wild opening tee shot has cost Andy Sullivan at 1. The first dropped shots of the 148th Open: a double bogey. Of the nine players to have completed a hole so far, he’s the only one over par. He’s +2.
It doesn’t sit right with me that my baggy green lies in a cupboard unused for years at a time
My strongest memories of growing up and falling in love with cricket are watching the men’s team play Test matches. We never had women’s cricket on TV in those days, so they were who I wanted to emulate. Glenn McGrath, in particular, was my hero. And I’ll never forget as a kid watching Mike Hussey hit the winning runs in the “Amazing Adelaide” Test of 2006.
There is an honour associated to Tests due to the history it brings. As much as I enjoy playing T20 cricket, there is something about the culture around playing with a red ball in whites which has always gripped me as both a fan and now as an Australian player. It makes it pretty frustrating that my baggy green sits in its holder in my cupboard for two years at a time. It’s also why this week means so much to me, as we prepare for our Women’s Ashes Test.
The Australian entered the pantheon of great sprinters able combine technical ability and raw speed in a cauldron of pressure
As a young child, Caleb Ewan would stay awake late into the evening at his family home in the Southern Highlands, watching on television as the pinnacle of international cycling played out on the roads of France. On Wednesday, the dream that emerged those many years ago in the mind of young Ewan came true half a world away in Toulouse, as the Australian won his debut Tour de France stage.
Ewan readily admitted afterwards that the triumph fulfilled a longstanding childhood ambition. But it also felt like vindication. The emotion etched on the 25-year-old’s face after he narrowly outsprinted Dylan Groenewegen in a frenetic bunch finish certainly suggested Ewan had proved a point.
Team Sky rider originally finished second to Spanish rider
Froome is now the first British winner of a Grand Tour
Chris Froome has officially been named as the winner of the 2011 Vuelta a España following a doping case involving Juan José Cobo, who originally finished in first place.
It is Froome’s seventh Grand Tour title and first chronologically. Bradley Wiggins did not win the Tour de France until the following July, so Froome’s retrospective victory also makes him Britain’s first Grand Tour winner.
The tempestuous 24-year-old has finished third or better in his last three starts, including victory at the Irish Open in Lahinch a fortnight ago and a podium finish at the US Open, and he relishes playing in the grimy Irish weather.
Dettori arrived in a pony-and-trap as Lester Piggott had done on his visit, but could not match Piggott’s three wins at the County Kerry track
Frankie Dettori’s flying visit to Killarney racecourse on Wednesday evening did not result in any flying dismounts, as the most familiar face in racing failed to find a winner in four attempts.
Dettori had arrived at the course in a pony-and-trap, just as Lester Piggott had done on a famous visit to the Irish track in the 1990s. Piggott too had four rides at the County Kerry course, and won with three of them. Unlike his predecessor as racing’s most famous jockey, Dettori failed to find a winner in front of a huge crowd, instead chalking up two second-place finishes.
Dettori’s evening started with a near-miss on Time Tunnel, an 11-4 shot, who was drawn out wide but was soon at the head of affairs. Dettori held the advantage until well inside the final furlong, when Tauran Shaman ran him down to win by half a length.
After a 68-year wait Royal Portrush has the potential to prove one of the major’s more exciting backdrops
Counterintuitive though it may seem the Open Championship, in its 148th staging and with a history stretching back to 1860 in Prestwick, has entered uncharted territory. Never before has this tournament been so defined by its venue. Significance of location far outweighs the most illustrious participants. After a wait of 68 years, a stretch marked for so long by grim societal realities, Royal Portrush is the Open’s terrain once more.
• Martin Slumbers: ‘Our job is to respect the fact we are guests’ • Saturday’s march an ‘unnecessary provocation’ says tourist firm
The R&A has refused to condemn a “celebration of marching bands” which is staging a three-hour show in Portrush on Saturday before marching to an Orange hall.
Much has been made of the inclusive nature of this Open championship, which is the first to be held in Northern Ireland since 1951 because of the political and religious troubles. But when the Guardian asked Martin Slumbers, the chief executive of the R&A, whether he felt uneasy that a parade of marching bands including the Sons of Ulster would send the wrong message, he sidestepped the question – and pointed out that there were always things going on around the tournament that were “wonderful”.
German player wins after 11-day competition in Las Vegas
55-year-old is first non-US champion since 2014
Germany’s Hossein Ensan outlasted Italy’s Dario Sammartino and Canada’s Alex Livingston to claim the $10m title early on Wednesday at the 50th World Series of Poker Main Event in Las Vegas.
The 55-year-old, who was born in Iran but moved to Germany 30 years ago, became the oldest world poker champion in 20 years when he finished off Sammartino after nearly eight hours of play at the final table. It’s the first time since 2014 the winner has come from outside the United States and the third time the title has gone to an Iranian-born competitor.
• Proposed plans for 2021 aimed at getting more competitive races • Main proposal is to reintroduce ground effect to help overtaking
Formula One has revealed details on its proposed plans to improve the racing with new regulations for 2021 that are set to be officially confirmed in October. Ross Brawn, F1’s sporting director, has been leading the investigation of ways to reinvent the sport. The most detailed version of their vision, including an intent to bring back the “wow” factor, was unveiled on Wednesday.
• England 72-46 Trinidad and Tobago • Jamaica defeat Scotland 67-36
You would think the one thing you cannot do without as a goal shooter is the feeling in your fingers. Not if you are Rachel Dunn, apparently. In the second quarter of England’s game against Trinidad and Tobago, their starting goal shooter still managed to get the ball in the net even though a knock to her elbow had left her with a mostly numb hand.
The sight of Dunn holding a wrist and shaking her fingers provided the only truly nervous moment as England returned from their day off to rack up a 72-46 win against Trinidad and Tobago after their day off to gold-plating their place in Saturday’s semi-finals – even if it was not their most sparkling performance.
McIlroy will contest The Open at childhood course Royal Portrush, but is keen to emphasise the wider context of a major being played in Northern Ireland
When Rory McIlroy says he is treating this like any other Open Championship it is not really clear who he thinks he is kidding. Maybe he is more worried about persuading himself than he is anyone else, that it is his way of coping with all the emotional pressure he feels about playing here, in what he has repeatedly described as one of the most important tournaments of his life. Every major matters, but this one matters more than most, for him, and for his country.
McIlroy lives in Florida, but he still calls Northern Ireland home and he has an interesting, informed perspective on how significant this Championship is. “Sport has an unbelievable ability to bring people together,” he said. “We all know that this country sometimes needs that. This has the ability to do that.
• Crystal Ocean is second-favourite behind Enable • King George will include at least half a dozen Group One winners
James Doyle will climb aboard one of the best spare rides of the season on Saturday week, after he was booked to ride Crystal Ocean, the second favourite, for Sir Michael Stoute in the King George VI & Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Ascot. Crystal Ocean is a 3-1 shot for British racing’s midsummer showpiece behind the odds-on favourite, Enable, who is 4-6 to extend a 10-race winning streak that dates back to May 2017.
Frankie Dettori, Enable’s regular jockey, was aboard Crystal Ocean when the five-year-old registered his first win at Group One level in the Prince of Wales’s Stakes at Royal Ascot last month, while Ryan Moore, who seems sure to be claimed to ride for Aidan O’Brien in the King George, was in the plate for his two previous wins in 2019.
• Ewan pips Groenewegen in mass sprint to win in Toulouse • Alaphilippe retains his overall Tour de France lead
Caleb Ewan of Australia, riding for the Lotto-Soudal team, won the 11th stage of the Tour de France from Albi to Toulouse, the first of his career, despite his usual lead-out man Jasper de Buyst tumbling into a ditch only a few kilometres from the finish.
The diminutive 25-year-old follows in the wheel tracks of Mark Cavendish, absent from this year’s race following his non-selection by the Dimension Data team, who was the last winner in Toulouse in 2008. Ewan’s acceleration in the Boulevard Lascrosses proved too rapid for his rivals Dylan Groenewegen and Elia Viviani, after a stage-long break was swept up in the closing kilometres.
Jacob Rees-Mogg’s tweet was frustrating because we want sport to be pure, as it was at Lord’s in a game the Kiwis didn’t deserve to lose
“I’m not sure anyone at the moment has a steady heart … Seven weeks of cricket, 48 games, one ball. Here’s Boult, they’re going to push, are we in for a super over? They’ve got to go quick, they’ve got to go quick. OUT! I’m sure he’s OUT! We’re going for a super over!”
The ICC montage of the last moments of the Cricket World Cup final has almost four million views – which isn’t that impressive considering three million of them are mine. Ian Smith’s commentary, in that gravelly Kiwi drawl, is spine tingling to the last second.
Greenwood scores as Man Utd beat Leeds 4-0 in Australia
Newcastle beaten 4-0 by Wolves as Bruce appointed manager
Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford put Manchester United on course for a 4-0 pre-season win against Leeds in Australia. A fine move involving the impressive Paul Pogba and the £45m signing Aaron Wan-Bissaka led to 17-year-old Greenwood’s first senior goal and Ole Gunnar Solskjær said the young forward may even force his way into his starting lineup for the first match of the Premier League season, against Chelsea.
“He’s got a chance of starting that one, definitely,” Solskjaer said. “He’s more than capable and will always be there, in and around the box, creating chances. And I won’t say that’s not a possibility, no, it’s a good possibility. If he keeps going as he does. It’s difficult to keep players out who perform well.
• British 800m runner appeared to grab 74-year-old by throat • Toni Minichiello among coaches to criticise UKA’s punishment
UK Athletics’ decision to fine Kyle Langford, the Commonwealth 800m silver medallist, £1,000 for an incident in which he appeared to grab a 74-year-old official by the throat has been criticised as “lenient” and “derisory” by leading coaches.
Having already secured the permanent services of André Gomes, the arrival of the England midfielder for a cut-price £8.5m should only add to sense of excitement at Goodison
The consensus among the more excitable news outlets is that this is going to be a record-breaking transfer window in England, with some huge deals expected in the next few weeks, even if Paul Pogba, Harry Maguire, Christian Eriksen and the rest are all back in pre-season training with the same clubs they were supposed to be leaving.
There is more to building an effective side that splashing the cash and playing games of brinkmanship, however, and Everton must be among the clubs quite satisfied with the business they have done so far. Basically Marco Silva has bought himself a new midfield for a cost of around £30m, even if André Gomes was already at Goodison on loan last season. Most people felt a fee of a £22m for a former Barcelona player of obvious class was a fair price in todays’s inflated market, which makes Fabian Delph at £8.5m either a steal or the bargain of the decade.
• World Cup hero in 13-man party that will face Ireland at Lord’s • Jimmy Anderson also included despite fitness concerns
Jason Roy looks set to be part of England’s Ashes campaign after receiving a first Test call-up for the match against Ireland next week.
The opener, a key part of England’s World Cup triumph, was named in the 13-man party for the four-day, one-off Test at Lord’s on Wednesday, one that includes another new face in Somerset’s Lewis Gregory. There is also a place for Jimmy Anderson despite concerns over the bowler’s fitness as well as a return from injury for Warwickshire’s Olly Stone.
The Southampton striker talks about growing up in Thurnby Lodge, playing non-league and being named after Che Guevara
Che Adams confirms it is “Shay” rather than “Chay” before he sits down to discuss how he has become Southampton’s newest signing in a £14m deal from Birmingham City but the spelling of his name begs an obvious question. Is there any connection to Che Guevara?
“Yeah, it was where I got my name from,” Adams replies, breezily. “Che Guevara was in the news around the time that I was born and I think it was something to do with where his body was buried, although I’m not sure. My mum just really liked the name.”
‘I can say that we are going to have a very good team’
Emery not drawn on possible loan for Dani Ceballos
Unai Emery insists Arsenal are working to bring in “three or four” players before the start of the new season.
So far this summer the club have signed only the 18-year-old forward Gabriel Martinelli despite being linked with a host of names. Arsenal have a smaller budget than the majority of their closest Premier League rivals but have still continued to show reported interest in some key targets.
Bruce’s happiest times were at smaller clubs and he starts his biggest Premier League job as a manager with eyes fully open
Steve Bruce is normally a safe if somewhat unexciting pair of managerial hands, though as supporters of Sheffield United, Birmingham City and Wigan Athletic will attest, he does have a penchant for resigning or leaving to further his career elsewhere. As recently as January he was claiming his 10th club, Sheffield Wednesday, might be the last he would manage, but presumably he always knew that if the call came from Newcastle he would find it hard to resist.
What he does at most clubs is steady the defence, sort out a settled team and begin to make small but significant improvements. Newcastle are certainly in need of someone who can do that but they have just lost an arch-pragmatist and organisational master in Rafa Benítez, and it remains doubtful whether Bruce is quite up to the Spaniard’s tactical standards or as stoically diplomatic in adverse circumstances.
Hello all. Hope you’re all feeling refreshed after a hard-earned rest day. Today the peloton blasts across Tarn, from Albi to Toulouse. It’s a day for the sprinters, the last one for a while with the first taste of the Pyrenees coming up on Thursday. That said, if Monday’s madness tells us anything it’s to take nothing for granted in this bike race.
Here’s what William Fotheringham has to say about today’s stage:
An amuse-bouche before the serious general classification racing begins, this is a short and probably rapid sprint stage across the south of France with only an early third-category climb to trouble the sprinters. There will be a break, but there are only two more sprint stages after this, so the fastmen will want their teams to control the race.
The Yorkshireman packed in playing after coming 33rd at Lytham in 1979 but aged 68 the coach to Stenson, Koepka and Woodland has 11 pupils taking part at Royal Portrush
When Seve Ballesteros celebrated victory at Royal Lytham & St Annes in 1979 few would have paid attention to the identity of the individual sharing 33rd in the Open Championship. Little did anyone know that an outstanding coaching career was in the embers of creation as a result of that placing. Forty years on, focusing on Pete Cowen is entirely justified.
Steve Bruce has been confirmed as the manager of Newcastle United, replacing Rafael Benítez. The 58-year-old quit Sheffield Wednesday on Monday to take his first Premier League job since 2015.
Bruce’s appointment on a three-year contract was announced after Newcastle agreed compensation with Wednesday, where he was appointed on a rolling one-year contract in January. His previous jobs include spells at Hull and Aston Villa.
Ex-England international to appear before magistrates court over post-match incident in Barnsley tunnel
Joey Barton, the manager of Fleetwood Town, has been charged with causing actual bodily harm after the Barnsley coach, Daniel Stendel, was left with facial injuries following a fracas in the South Yorkshire football club’s tunnel, police said.
South Yorkshire police said the 36-year-old one-time England international was charged after the incident at the Oakwell stadium on 13 April.
South Korea’s women’s water polo team lost their first two games at the world championships by an eye-watering aggregate score of 94-1 – but they celebrated their solitary goal as if they had won gold.
After suffering a record 64-0 defeat by Hungary in their Group B opener at the weekend, the plucky hosts were battered 30-1 by the 2017 bronze medallists Russia on Tuesday.
• Saracens forward made comments supportive of Israel Folau • ‘I have made my position clear,’ he says at England camp
Billy Vunipola has no plans to stay off social media during the forthcoming World Cup in Japan despite the controversy sparked by his support for Israel Folau – who has since been sacked for his homophobic outburst. Vunipola refused to discuss his specific Instagram post and the furore it prompted in April, stating only that he will not “expand on” nor “take a step back” from his stance, with the England international adding: “I have made my position clear.”
The Rugby Football Union will not place any restrictions on England’s social media use at the World Cup – indeed, Eddie Jones was recently extolling its virtues – but while all players will receive guidance before heading to Japan, Vunipola’s insistence that he will not impose any ban on himself, as he did during the Six Nations, has the potential to cause the union a headache.
Europe’s heavyweights have all been busy. Catch up on the big moves in La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1
After an underwhelming title race and struggles in Europe, Spain’s top three have all been very busy already. Real Madrid have spent more than £250m to sign Eden Hazard, striker Luka Jovic and defenders Ferland Mendy and Éder Militão, along with Brazilian forward Rodrygo, who arrives after agreeing a move last summer. The sale of fringe players like Mateo Kovacic has helped offset the outlay – but there may be more to come.
• England’s winning captain would be 36 at next World Cup • Suggestions he may hand over to his deputy Jos Buttler
Chris Woakes says England’s players will back whatever decision Eoin Morgan makes over his future as the one-day captain after he led the team to World Cup glory on Sunday.
Morgan took over the leadership of England’s limited-overs sides from Alastair Cook four and a half years ago and the expectation is he will continue in his role as T20 captain until the end of that format’s World Cup in Australia next year. However, with the next 50-over World Cup in India four years away, the 32-year-old may decide to hand over the reins of that team to Jos Buttler, his deputy in both short formats, before the end of the year.
• British team have Thomas and Bernal in second and third • Groupama–FDJ principal says Thibaut Pinot can recover
Dave Brailsford’s rest-day habit of provoking the French resurfaced again as the Tour de France took a 24-hour pause in Albi, a day after the home hero Thibaut Pinot had been unceremoniously worked over by Geraint Thomas and his Ineos teammates in gusting crosswinds.
While Pinot raged against his bad luck at his own team’s media conference, after an opening phase of the Tour in which he had hardly put a foot wrong, Brailsford appeared to relish the Frenchman’s predicament when he spoke to the media. “We are here to race,” the Ineos team principal said. “I live and breathe and think all day about sticking the knife in and, when you get the chance, twisting it.”
Woods is short of tournament practice but, with three Open wins, he knows he can work his way around Royal Portrush
According to the nice lady at the tourist office, 200,000 people will swarm into Portrush for the Open Championship this week. Early on Tuesday great swathes of them were already tracking Tiger Woods as he scuffed around, hoping to find his groove and his game. Eight holes later he was still looking.
“It’s not quite as sharp as I’d like to have it right now,” the winner of 15 majors admitted. “I still need to shape the golf ball a little bit better, especially with the weather coming in and the winds are going to be changing.
• Former director of cricket wants ECB to capitalise on euphoria • Strauss says success of 2005 Ashes was not built on
Andrew Strauss, England’s former director of cricket, has urged the game’s power brokers to learn from the mistakes of the past and capitalise on England’s World Cup success, declaring: “This has to be the start of something bigger.”
Strauss left his job at the England and Wales Cricket Board last October but not before laying the foundations for England’s white-ball resurgence, namely deciding to stick with Eoin Morgan as captain after he had led the team to a humiliating first-round exit at the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand and then appointing a coach in Trevor Bayliss who advocated an attacking, expressive style of play that has characterised the team’s transformation over the past four years.
Fourteen years ago, Aaron O’Callaghan and Stephen Crowe played with a 16-year-old McIlroy during an amazing round
As Rory McIlroy tees off in the tournament he placed on a pedestal the moment Royal Portrush was reconfirmed as an Open Championship venue, Aaron O’Callaghan will look on from North Carolina with memories flooding back. Stephen Crowe will already have been and gone from the 148th Open’s practice rounds.
The trio are intrinsically linked by a round at Portrush that made golfing history, even though the past 14 years have taken McIlroy, Crowe and O’Callaghan in different directions. That they had existing friendship through prominent amateur golf events – with McIlroy, the youngest, always the star man – makes the story even more endearing. Mutual affection remains. Mention Crowe and O’Callaghan and it will draw a broad McIlroy smile.
Two years ago Lewes FC became the first football club in the world to pay their women’s team the same wages as their men’s team. The club’s chairman, Stuart Fuller, is still waiting for other clubs will follow their lead. “We are pushing the message that this is possible and spreading this to other clubs and other sports,” says Fuller. “The question should be why not, rather than why. Last season our top earner at the club was a women’s player.”
Most of the players at the club – both male and female – earn between £100 and £250 per week, but equality is about more than pay for Lewes. It is also about participation and resources. The club want their grassroots outreach in the local community to reach as many girls as boys and they are offering both of their senior squads the same level of coaching. As the manager of their men’s team, Darren Freeman, put it: “We use the same pitch, the same facilities, the same ball. As football fans we all want our team to win regardless of gender. Parity means giving everyone the same opportunity and getting the same rewards.”
• England defender due for medical in Spanish capital • Trippier excused from flight to Singapore for pre-season tour
Kieran Trippier is on the brink of sealing a move to Atlético Madrid in a deal worth £20m plus add-ons and he has been given permission by Tottenham to travel to the Spanish capital for a medical.
The full-back, who starred for England at the World Cup in Russia, endured a difficult season last time out and Mauricio Pochettino, the Spurs manager, has decided to cash in on him as he reshapes his squad for what he has called the “next chapter” of his tenure.
Briton says 8 November bout in Saudi Arabia lined up
Confirmation rests on Pacquiao beating Thurman
Amir Khan has claimed that he and Manny Pacquiao have signed up for a fight and are targeting a meeting in Saudi Arabia later this year. The 32-year-old Briton said the pair have agreed terms, with Riyadh the venue for a long-awaited bout.
Khan won the WBC international welterweight title with a fourth-round stoppage of Billy Dib in Jeddah on Saturday night. Now he intends to return to Saudi Arabia on 8 November to face his former sparring partner Pacquiao, if the Filipino comes through unscathed against Keith Thurman in their WBA welterweight title fight in Las Vegas this weekend.
• Former world No 1 says four in four months harms preparations • Rose targeting second major win in Open at Royal Portrush
Justin Rose has broken ranks from golf’s leading players by criticising the new schedule for 2019 that features four majors in as many months. This week’s Open Championship rounds off a major season that opened with the Masters in April; Rose believes the calendar is detrimental to competitor preparations.
The former world No 1 said: “In my opinion they’re too soon. It’s too condensed. As a professional in terms of trying to peak for something, the process that’s involved in trying to do that can be detailed and it can be longer than a month. So that’s my reasoning for that.”
Former world champion boxer who won gold at the 1984 Olympics
During debates about who is the best boxer of all time, the former four-weight world champion Pernell “Sweet Pea” Whitaker is sometimes overlooked. He was not a fearsome puncher, nor was he a braggart who commanded headlines in the era before social media when newspaper reporters treasured outrageous quotes to sell a fight. But his peers always rated him among the sport’s elite.
Whitaker, who has died aged 55 after being hit by a car while crossing a road in his hometown of Virginia Beach, Virginia, was an Olympic gold medallist for the US at the Los Angeles games of 1984, after which he turned professional, first becoming a world champion as a lightweight in 1989. He eventually quit boxing in 2001, having fought in a total of 23 world title contests, of which he lost only three and drew one, in hugely controversial circumstances against the Mexican fighter Julio César Chávez.
It’s that time of the year when clubs bring out their strips for the coming season, so which ones do we look back on fondly?
There’s history behind this one. It was the first ever fluorescent outfield shirt (according to Umbro, at least) and kicked off a trend that has never really gone away (no surprise given it was said at the time that it was the best selling shirt, other than England kits, that Umbro had ever produced). But more importantly, to me at least, it was a) the first away shirt I ever owned and b) the shirt Sheffield United wore as they stormed to promotion to the old First Division in 1990, which was achieved via a 5-2 win against Leicester City at Filbert Street on the final day of that season. They also wore it the following season, their first campaign in the top flight since the mid-70s. A truly iconic shirt among Blades. JA
• Black Caps coach declines to blame umpiring error for loss • Stead says losing in such a manner a ‘very hollow feeling’
The New Zealand coach, Gary Stead, has shrugged off the debate over whether an umpiring error denied the Black Caps World Cup final glory against England, saying umpires are “human”. However, he added that sharing the trophy when teams cannot be separated should be considered.
The size of the loss has not been revealed, but Arc weekend was in the red in 2018, despite an eye-watering admission price hike
French racing’s senior executives are clearly hard at work before October’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and briefed reporters at Longchamp for Sunday’s Grand Prix de Paris on their plans to avoid a repeat of the PR disaster when the track hosted its first Arc since 2015 last autumn. But while they were doing their best to woo the British and Irish fans who were bitterly disappointed by their experience in 2018, they also revealed what seems to be – to me, at least – an astonishing fact about the showpiece event of European racing. Arc weekend, which includes the only day of the entire season when Longchamp is full to the rafters, runs at a loss.
You read that correctly. A loss. If Edward Gillespie, the man who turned the Cheltenham Festival into one of sport’s biggest events, happens to be reading this piece, his eyebrows have just hit the ceiling.
And the latest from Moeen yesterday, in case you missed it.
“Morgs was dead right to highlight how the different opinions on such things in this dressing room are actually part of our strength. We are an incredibly diverse team from different backgrounds and cultures but, crucially, we respect this and embrace it. We never shy away from it.
Clashes with other events and changes in domestic structure mean cricket’s attempts to reclaim its territory will be resisted
An hour after the midsummer madness finished at Lord’s on Sunday night the phone rang. One of our relatives in Yorkshire had something to say. “I couldn’t handle the tension,” announced nine-year-old Amos. “Really, I just wanted it to be over. My hands were so sweaty.” He did not say this as though it were a bad thing. He said it with the zeal of a convert.
“So if someone in the playground tomorrow says: ‘Let’s play cricket,’ would you go for it?” I asked. He thought for a moment. “Yeah. Think I would.”
Guardian and Observer photographer Tom Jenkins spent seven weeks working on the Cricket World Cup from the first game between South Africa and England at the Oval to the dramatic finale at Lord’s. His images here focus on the friendly and colourful tournament that showcased the country’s multicultural population
Click on the information icons for more details on each image
Everybody is allowed to be themselves, and everybody should be a little bit different as well.
We’re playing with the spirit to create a new way, says manager
Martinelli, Saka and Olayinka score in win over Colorado Rapids
The Arsenal manager, Unai Emery, has said he is awaiting a decision on Laurent Koscielny after the captain refused to travel with the squad for their pre-season tour to the United States but added the Premier League club must “keep moving ahead” regardless.
The 33-year-old French centre back, who has a year remaining on his contract, has been linked with a switch to the Ligue 1 clubs Bordeaux and Lyon.
Employees will stay home for two weeks as part of mass trial to take pressure off crowded public transport system
Hundreds of thousands of employees in Tokyo will work from home for two weeks as part of a trial of measures designed to reduce congestion during next year’s Olympics.
With more than 8 million people commuting into Tokyo every day, the influx of visitors for the Games in 2020 is expected to pile more pressure on the Japanese capital’s infamously crowded train system.
The track drew praise from several drivers after Sunday’s British GP for encouraging competitive racing and it also benefited from the stewards allowing hard but fair racing
With the signing of a new contract to host F1 for a further five years there was a celebratory air at Silverstone. That F1 had done the right thing was confirmed in spades on Sunday, when the old airfield delivered a marvellous race. The drivers revelled in it and the opportunity for genuine racing it affords. F1’s problems in following closely have not gone away but they are negated on good tracks. Silverstone’s layout encourages a fight and several of the corner sequences give drivers the chance to come back during an attempted pass which makes for compelling action. The previous race at Austria similarly facilitated proper racing. It is no coincidence these tracks repeatedly host a great spectacle. The three men on the podium – Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas and Charles Leclerc – were all in agreement: it was the circuits making the difference. Bottas was unusually and pleasingly blunt in identifying F1’s real problem. “It’s all about selection of the tracks,” he said. “I’m sure many of the track selections for the calendar are just pure political reasons and money, rather than focusing on whether it’s good for racing or not.”
Teammates make ‘Tongan Thor’ back away from getaway car after phone robbery left player with minor cuts
Taking on a 135kg Wallabies front-rower nicknamed the “Tongan Thor” on the street might seem like one of the worst ideas in the history of bad ideas, but it was Taniela Tupou who was left counting his blessings after being subjected to a brazen robbery in Johannesburg over the weekend.
Tupou, in South Africa preparing for Australia’s opening Rugby Championship match later this week, was heading back to the team hotel after dinner at a steak restaurant in an affluent suburb when a man pounced and snatched his mobile phone.
• England international becomes club’s third summer signing • ‘I’ve come here with ambitions to win things’
Everton have completed the signing of Fabian Delph from Manchester City with Marco Silva convinced the 29-year-old can play an influential role on and off the pitch at Goodison Park.
The England international had one year remaining on his City contract but wanted more regular first-team football having made 20 appearances in their treble-winning season. Everton will pay an initial £8.5m for the midfielder, rising to £10m with add-ons. The former Leeds and Aston Villa player has signed a three-year deal at Goodison.
Sunday’s Wimbledon triumph means Djokovic has 16 majors, just four behind Federer, and overhauling the Swiss is not a subject he is shying away from
Any reasonable analysis of the 2019 Wimbledon men’s singles final – as opposed to the fan letters that drive fringes of the tennis media – would surely conclude that Novak Djokovic will finish his career with more majors than Roger Federer but a bucket less of love.
It must have been difficult for the world No 1 to endure the disrespect of large swaths of the Centre Court crowd on Sunday, emboldened by Pimm’s and their one-eyed adoration for the Swiss, cheering Djokovic’s every mistake, of which there were too many, and occasionally acknowledging his indomitable spirit.
The all-rounder’s remarkable performances during the tournament, capped by a bravura display in the final, suggest Stokes 3.0 could be the best iteration of all
Ben Stokes: remember the name. This World Cup was always billed as a moment to refresh and start over, a chance to straighten the mistakes of the recent past. It is a process that works on the micro as well as the macro level.
For a long time Sunday’s final at Lord’s felt like an occasion looking for a shape to fit, a genre to follow. As England restricted New Zealand’s batsmen it must have felt for the home crowd like a summer comedy, a jaunt destined for the inevitable happy ending. As England fumbled and stalled in mid-afternoon it seemed like something else: a saga, an epic, perhaps even, as wickets began to fall, a horror story.
• England 56-48 Jamaica • Jamaica almost certain to miss knockout rounds
England’s netballers have made it part of their mantra to have fun at this World Cup. And now they can: their 56-48 defeat of Jamaica, in only the first of this week’s matches, has already all but secured them a semi-final spot. For Jamaica, however, it was the end of a four year dream – their surprise defeat against South Africa on Sunday made this a must-win game, and now, unless an unlikely sequence of results go their way, this will be the first time since 1995 that they have not made it into the knockout rounds.
It was a major blow for a team who came into this tournament ranked third in the world and with strong hopes of their first trophy in 15 attempts. But captain Jhaniele Fowler-Reid took a deep breath and a philosophical stance. “Of course we’re devastated, we’re disappointed because we wanted to go further,” she said. “But what can we do? We’re not going to kill ourselves, to be honest.”
• Clarke: ‘It’s Royal Portrush and when the R&A ask you it’s a yes’ • The Open was last held in Northern Ireland in 1951
Darren Clarke has insisted he had no hesitation in accepting the R&A’s offer of a ceremonial role to hit the first tee shot of this week’s Open Championship. Clarke, a member of Royal Portrush who has a home in the town, was approached by the R&A’s chief executive Martin Slumbers in June with a view to getting the Open’s return to the venue for the first time since 1951 underway.
• Head coach trusts captain for T20 World Cup next year • ‘The rest of the boys try and run through a brick wall for him’
Eoin Morgan has been backed to remain as England captain for the foreseeable future after masterminding the World Cup victory that has sealed his place in the pantheon of British sporting immortals.
As the ticker-tape settled in the aftermath of England’s historic win over New Zealand at Lord’s, the 32-year-old said he would take time away from the game to consider whether he will still be worth his place in the team in four years’ time.
In the England dressing room, it doesn’t matter where you come from or what you believe in; if you show courage, unity and respect you can achieve anything
The moment we won the World Cup is one I will never forget and would do anything just to experience again. It was the most euphoric sporting sensation you could possibly imagine.
I was sat in the dugout, roughly at third man, as the throw came in from Jason Roy. In that split second I knew Jos Buttler would take the ball cleanly, I knew that Martin Guptill was short of his ground and from there, with the stumps demolished, I knew it would be total carnage.
England’s gathering at the Oval seemed a fairly subdued and chaotic way to celebrate one of the great sporting achievements but, silly as it all was, it felt sweet and fitting too
People have all sorts of ideas about the best way to tackle a bad hangover: cold showers, carbohydrates, coffee, perhaps a good cooked breakfast or a turn in the fresh air. One thing no one has ever recommended, though, is the remedy the ECB concocted for their World Cup winning team, which involved a meet-and-greet with hundreds of screaming primary-school children on the outfield at the Oval, a round of press and TV interviews, and then, to cap it all off, a swift hair-of-the-dog with Theresa May at No 10 Downing Street. Watching the players come stumbling downstairs from the dressing room at 11 in the morning, the drinkers among them conspicuous by their sunglasses, it looked less like a party than it did a punishment.
When Sri Lanka won the World Cup in 1996, their captain, Arjuna Ranatunga, lost the cheque he had just been presented with at the victory ceremony because someone pickpocketed it off him during the pitch invasion. This time you wondered, for a minute, whether Eoin Morgan was going to lose the World Cup trophy when he disappeared beneath a wave of overexcited schoolchildren, who started climbing all over him, and each other, to get at it. At one point, one of the bigger kids among them seemed to have actually wrenched the cup away from him, before someone wisely decided that maybe they should hurry the thing back indoors again.
• Pinot, Fuglsang, Urán and Porte lose time in crosswinds • Van Aert takes stage win, Alaphilippe keeps yellow
The defending champion Geraint Thomas gained time on a handful of rivals as crosswinds caused chaos in the peloton in the climax of Monday’s 10th stage of the Tour de France.
Thomas was on the right end of a bunch split 35km from the finish of the 217.5km ride from St Flour with France’s Thibaut Pinot, Dane Jakob Fuglsang and Australian Richie Porte trapped behind. The trio finished 1min 39sec off the pace, according to a provisional result.
Our team of writers pick the best bits from an unforgettable tournament and offer a few hopes for the future
Vic Marks Kane Williamson. With minimal support he scored the runs that took New Zealand to the final; he stayed incredibly cool when defending all those low scores. And he was so classy after the final.
Four-weight champion struck by car on Sunday night
Considered by many to be greatest defensive boxer of all time
Pernell Whitaker, widely considered to be one of the greatest defensive boxers of all time, has died after being hit by a car. He was 55.
Police in Virginia Beach said Whitaker was killed as he crossed the road at an intersection on Sunday night. “When officers arrived on scene they located an adult male victim who had been hit by a vehicle. The victim succumbed to his injuries on the scene,” a Virginia Beach Police Department spokesman said in a statement. “The driver of the vehicle remained on scene with police.”
• British Grand Prix winner increasingly comfortable with car • ‘Every year you get a bit more comfortable within yourself’
Lewis Hamilton has expressed how at ease he is with himself and his driving after taking his seventh win of the season at the British Grand Prix. After 10 races it is the strongest opening sequence of his career and increased the Mercedes driver’s imposing lead in the world championship standings.
Having taken the flag at Silverstone the five-times world champion, who has often come into his own at this stage of the year, also ominously warned that he is now feeling hugely confident with his Mercedes car.
• France Galop: ‘Every racing fan should have a proper drink’ • Last year’s race meeting was beset with problems
France Galop, French racing’s ruling body, will cut admission prices for this year’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe and “promise that every English racing fan should have a proper drink” if Enable wins her third Arc at Longchamp in October, following widespread criticism of the facilities and customer service at the track in 2018 after a €140m (£123m) redevelopment.
Thousands of British and Irish racing fans make an annual pilgrimage to Paris on the first weekend in October for Europe’s richest and most prestigious race. Last year, though, many left bitterly disappointed and threatening never to return, amid reports of extended queues for toilets, betting windows, sandwich kiosks and bars, many of which seemed to run out of supplies by mid-afternoon.
• Still no official bid for French midfielder • Only three and a half weeks left of transfer window
Paul Pogba’s hopes of leaving Manchester United this summer are becoming remote with the club receiving no bids for the midfielder and the transfer window closing in less than a month.
The deadline of this summer’s transfer window is 8 August and is an issue regarding any potential deal. Ole Gunnar Solskjær has already lost a midfielder in Ander Herrera, who joined Paris Saint-Germain as a free agent, so if Pogba was to depart it would be difficult for the manager to have to replace a second midfielder in the three and a half weeks left of the window.
If you were at Lord’s, Wimbledon or Silverstone or just delirious in the back garden here was a day to rekindle the Olympic spirit of 2012 and forget the decision that has divided us since
Bread and circuses, eh? A full house of 140,000 at Silverstone, Wimbledon packed for the men’s final, the entire nation taking advantage of the free-to-air concession to follow the twists and turns of an unprecedented cricket showdown at a sold-out Lord’s. Who, we asked ourselves, does this stuff better? And yet amid the unfolding delirium of Sunday’s sporting cavalcade there were moments when it was impossible not to pause the action and ask what it means, in the times through which we are living, to find a few hours’ relief by cheering a bunch of talented people hitting a ball or driving round in circles.
Alexander says 16 teams ‘not necessarily conducive’ to good TV
Australia defeated Barbados 91–22 amid five games in five days
The Australian Diamonds demolished Barbados 91-22 at the World Cup in Liverpool thanks to a blinding first-half defensive effort, but while the reigning champions were not pushed on-court, the tournament’s punishing structure is emerging as a hot topic off it.
England have the spoils, to New Zealand goes the glory, and the nation has a chance to fall back in love with cricket again
It is a phrase that is usually painfully glib or laden with irony but for once it may be appropriate: perhaps cricket really was the winner. The audience beyond, thankfully enlarged, as well as those crammed into every nook and cranny of Lord’s, watched a melodrama that left everyone gasping. Spectators eventually filed out of the old ground stunned by what they had just witnessed, enthralled and exhausted.
The last hour at Lord’s was complicated, yet there seemed to be women and children present who found it utterly captivating. The result may not have been just but that is often the nature of sport. The ricochet from Ben Stokes’s bat in the final over of the longer match was a freak occurrence, a deus ex machina that no self-respecting playwright would dare to introduce. Never have I seen that happen with the game on a knife-edge. Without those four extra runs England would have needed seven to win, six to tie, from two balls: not impossible, but not very likely.