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Saturday 22 November 2014

Taylor returns against Pole

BOXING: Katie Taylor will return to the ring for the first time since clinching Olympic glory when she fights Poland's Karolina Graczyk at the Citywest Hotel in Dublin on February 22.

Taylor, whose win over Russia's Sofya Ochigava to take gold broke noise decibel levels at London's ExCel Arena, beat Graczyk in the final of the European Union Championships in 2011.

The fight will form part of finals night for the Ireland Elite Championships, which could also involve reigning European champion Joe Ward, who controversially missed out on Olympic selection.



GB lose Murray

TENNIS: Andy Murray will miss Great Britain's Davis Cup tie against Russia at Coventry's Ricoh Arena on April 5-7 to focus on the clay season.

The Australian Open finalist has decided to concentrate on his weakest surface immediately after the hard court tournaments in Indian Wells and Miami have been completed in March.

Murray is determined to make inroads into the advantage main rivals Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have traditionally enjoyed on clay.

However, the 25-year-old reigning US Open and Olympic champion will participate in the next Davis Cup tie in September.

"It's a shame to miss out on the Davis Cup, as I always enjoy playing," world number three Murray said.

"I speak to (Great Britain captain) Leon Smith and the team on a regular basis and will definitely be available to play the next Davis Cup tie later this year."



'Chicken': I lied

CYCLING: Cycling has been rocked by another confession of systematic doping by a leading rider after Danish cyclist Michael Rasmussen confessed to drug-taking over a 12-year period.

The 38-year-old told a news conference in Denmark he had taken numerous drugs including EPO, human growth hormone, testosterone, insulin and blood transfusions.

Rasmussen is a former 'King of the Mountains' in the Tour de France, and was banned for two years in 2007 for telling lies about his whereabouts to drugs testers.

Rasmussen, the former Rabobank rider nicknamed 'The Chicken' said: "I am well aware that I have cheated, lied and deceived people and other athletes."

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