Rafael Nadal recovers to destroy Fabio Foniini’s hopes for Rome’s Triumph

Rafael Nadal recovers to destroy Fabio Foniini’s hopes for Rome’s Triumph

It seems strange that Rafael Nadal’s dominance of clay in Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Paris was not so evident in Rome, where he has only seven titles and last appeared in the semi-finals four years ago.Still, he will hardly complain – and, indeed, he will be mightily happy if he wins on Sunday as it will haul him back to No 1 in the world over the absent Roger Federer. The man he defeated 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 on Friday to reach the semi‑finals, Fabio Fognini, will afford the Spaniard little…

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Rory McIlroy fired up by Masters missed chance as he chases first Sawgrass win

Rory McIlroy fired up by Masters missed chance as he chases first Sawgrass win

It remains unlikely that Rory McIlroy has publicly articulated the exact scale of his disappointment when falling short at the Masters – and why would he? – but the Northern Irishman is well aware of the best way to overcome heartache. McIlroy has three major championships in his sights for the remainder of 2018 but first comes this week’s Players Championship, the biggest tournament on the PGA Tour and one at which victory has eluded him. “It gives you motivation,” McIlroy said of the final round at Augusta National. “All…

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Tony Bellev shoved David Haye in the throat during a tense exchange before the fight

Tony Bellev shoved David Haye in the throat during a tense exchange before the fight

Tony Bellew pushed David Hay in the throat as tensions escalated at the final heavyweight rematch press conference ahead of the fight on Saturday at the O2 Arena in London. Bellew shoved his right arm into Haye’s throat as they went head-to-head with security staff having to restore order between the pair, who had come to blows at a press conference before their first fight. Earlier Haye insisted he has learned from his mistakes as he aims to conclusively end his rivalry with Bellew. Haye was stopped by his heavyweight…

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New IAAF testosterone rules could slow Caster Semenya by up to seven seconds

New IAAF testosterone rules could slow Caster Semenya by up to seven seconds

The Olympic 800m champion Caster Semenya could run up to seven seconds slower under new rules requiring her to lower her natural testosterone levels to race internationally, a prominent sports scientist has predicted. Under rules due to be announced on Thursday morning by the IAAF, the world athletics governing body, a separate female classification for an athlete with differences of sexual development (or DSDs) will be introduced. Such athletes, including Semenya, will have to reduce and then maintain their testosterone levels to no greater than 5nmol/L by 1 November if…

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Russia 2018: Matches on giant screen in Molenbeek, Jette, but not Brussels

Russia 2018: Matches on giant screen in Molenbeek, Jette, but not Brussels

No big screens will go up in public places in Brussels-Ixelles for Football World Cup 2018, but football lovers will be able to see the Red Devils in action on giant screens in Molenbeek and Jette. Wafaa Hammich, spokesperson of Brussels Mayor Philippe Close, confirmed a Wednesday report by Bruzz Media that giant screens would not go up in Brussels. She said the decision covered the entire Brussels-Ixelles police zone and was taken in consultation with Ixelles Mayor Dominique Dufourny. Hammich explained that the decision was taken for security reasons….

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Goolaerts had heart attack before falling, autopsy shows

Goolaerts had heart attack before falling, autopsy shows

Michael Goolaerts had a heart attack before falling on Sunday at the Paris-Roubaix race, according to the autopsy carried out on Wednesday on the 23-year-old cyclist, VTM Nieuws announced. The reason for the heart attack was still unknown. Toxicological tests will be conducted to ascertain its cause, but that could take months. On Wednesday, Goolaerts’ team, Veranda’s Willems-Crelan, was at the start of the annual Brabantse Pijl (Brabant Arrow) race, where a minute’s silence was observed. Everyone around the departed rider’s team wore a black band marked ‘Michael Goolaerts 24/07/1994…

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FA finds allegations of racial abuse by Jay Rodriguez ‘not proven’

FA finds allegations of racial abuse by Jay Rodriguez ‘not proven’

The Football Association has confirmed a charge the West Brom forward Jay Rodriguez racially abused Brighton’s Gaëtan Bong has been found “not proven” after an independent regulatory commission hearing. The striker, who has one England cap, had been accused of using “abusive and/or insulting words which included a reference to ethnic origin and/or colour and/or race” towards Bong in Albion’s Premier League victory in mid-January. Rodriguez appeared to pinch his nose after the clash between the players and his opponent then spoke to the referee. In his evidence, Bong had…

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Caster Semenya storms to 1500m title but is criticised by fellow runners

Caster Semenya storms to 1500m title but is criticised by fellow runners

Caster Semenya’s strongest opposition on the way to winning Commonwealth gold came from a faulty starter’s gun which left the women contesting the 1500m final struggling to stay warm on the start line. A deluge of rain before the race soaked the track at the Carrara Stadium and flooded the timing equipment. As organisers struggled to repair the clock and gun, the South African bounced on the spot in an effort to keep her muscles warm. The 1500m, the final event of the day’s athletics, eventually got under way 10…

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‘Walking miracle’ Tiger Woods calms talk of Masters comeback victory

‘Walking miracle’ Tiger Woods calms talk of Masters comeback victory

Tiger Woods may regard himself as the miracle man but he would not class success in this, the 82nd Masters, as the finest sporting revival story of all time. Speaking at Augusta National on Tuesday, Woods cited the recovery of Ben Hogan from a head-on road collision in 1949 to win multiple majors. “As far as greatest comebacks [go], I think that one of the greatest comebacks in all of sport is the gentleman who won here, Mr Hogan,” Woods said. “I mean, he got hit by a bus and…

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Tottenham’s quiet evolution slowly nears endgame under Pochettino

Tottenham’s quiet evolution slowly nears endgame under Pochettino

On 24 February 2008 Tottenham came from behind to beat Chelsea 2-1 in the League Cup final. Since then, they have sacked Juande Ramos, enjoyed a period of Gareth Bale-driven excitement under Harry Redknapp, taken significant missteps with André Villas-Boas and Tim Sherwood, and then found in Mauricio Pochettino a bright young manager under whom they have made progress in each of the past four seasons. But in that decade, they have won nothing. Since then, Chelsea have made 11 managerial changes. They have employed Guus Hiddink (twice) and Rafael…

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