Wednesday 13 December 2017

England make slow progress

CRICKET: England lost captain Andrew Strauss early this morning in their mission improbable to make 324 and therefore avoid a 3-0 Test series whitewash against Pakistan in Dubai.

Strauss (26) had survived a straightforward caught-behind chance off Umar Gul when he went, without addition, lbw on the back foot to Abdur Rehman.

He used up a precious review option too, as England reached 61-1 after the first hour on day four at the Dubai Cricket Stadium.

Not since 1929 have England made as many as they need here in the fourth innings to win a Test match, and Jonathan Trott (18) was the next to go as the tourists were 91-2 shortly after lunch.

Rocket wins in Germany

SNOOKER: Ronnie O'Sullivan came from behind to beat Stephen Maguire and win the German Masters in Berlin.

The former world number one, just one frame away from a first-round exit on Thursday, won the final 9-7 to land his first ranking title since September 2009.

Prior to this tournament, the penultimate event before the rankings cut-off point to decide which 16 players get automatic places at the World Championship, O'Sullivan was 16th and in danger of missing out on automatic qualification.

However, this success means his supporters can look forward to seeing him attempt to win a fourth Crucible crown.

Dubs head Superleague

BASKETBALL: It is a Dublin one-two in the Men's Superleague. DCU Saints remain in pole position after they were too strong for Belfast Star (63-82), but Killester are on their heels after beating UCD Marian 93-54.

After Friday's cup action, it was back to league matters and both north Dubliners were comfortable winners.

In the Women's Superleague, DCU Mercy put their National Cup disappointment behind them with a 72-64 win away to Brunell, while Glanmire eased past Dynamos and Killester beat Meteors.

Australia destroy India

CRICKET: Australia comfortably beat India by 65 runs in the opening match of the one-day triangular series in Melbourne.

Defending a highly competitive 216-5 in a contest reduced to 32 overs per side following the loss of more than three hours of play due to rain, the Australians bowled out the tourists for 151 in the 30th over.

Cavendish starts for Sky

CYCLING: Mark Cavendish made his first competitive appearance in a Team Sky jersey in the Tour of Qatar yesterday.

The Manxman, who switched to the British-run team after winning the Tour de France's green jersey and the World Championships last year, had fallen ill on the flight to Doha but was given the all-clear by team doctors.

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