Friday 19 December 2014

Sport in brief: Cycling - Sam Bennett pipped on line

Published 17/09/2013 | 05:00

An Post Chain Reaction cyclists, from left, Sam Bennett, Nicholas Vereecken and Shane Archbold cross the finish line in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place at Skerries after Stage 8 of the 2013 An Post
Sam Bennett (on left), pictured with his An Post Chain Reaction team-mates Nicholas Vereecken and Shane Archbold cross the finish line in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place at Skerries after Stage 8 of the 2013 An Post Rás.

Ireland's Sam Bennett came agonisingly close to the biggest victory of his career when he was caught just metres from the line to finish second on stage two of the Tour of Britain.

The 22-year-old Carrick-On-Suir rider, who has been in great form on the Belgian circuit, caught and passed lone escapee Thomas Lofkvist of IAM Cycling on the climb to the finish but was edged out in the final metres by Milan-San-Remo winner Gerald Ciolek.

"Maybe I went a bit early but when I went, I didn't even know I got a gap," said Bennett. "Eventually, I saw that I had a bit of a gap but when Ciolek got up to me, he kicked again and I just didn't have another kick in me.

"I came with the ambition of winning a stage or trying to get a podium place so it's a good start to the week. I can't really be disappointed."

Bennett is in the running for the last spot on the four-man Irish team that will tackle the world road race championships in Italy in two weeks' time.


Lee guilty of match-fixing

Former world No 5 Stephen Lee has been found guilty of fixing seven matches.The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association announced the verdict yesterday, and will decide on the player's sanction at a separate hearing on September 24. Lee (38) has been suspended since October last year and faces a possible lifetime ban.

The WPBSA said the Englishman fixed matches across four tournaments – the 2008 Malta Cup, the 2008 UK Championship, the 2009 China Open and the 2009 World Championship.

It is the biggest case of match-fixing to hit snooker since Australian Quinten Hann was suspended for eight years in 2006.


Fitzwilliam men's team travel to Riccione

Having won the All-Ireland club championships in May, the Fitzwilliam men's team travel to Riccione, Italy today to represent Ireland in the European Club Championships.

The team is led by former world No 7 and nine-time Irish champion Derek Ryan, with Niall Rooney, Nigel Peyton, Conor O'Hare, Rory Byrne and Kevin Moore making up the six-man squad.

Fitzwilliam will compete in the Euros for the fifth year in a row and are seeded seventh – they will face Ukrainian, Danish and French sides.

Sutton LTC are seeded sixth in the ladies' competition and will face England, Italy, Poland and the Czech Republic.

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