Doherty seals Crucible berth

DUBLINER Ken Doherty survived a tense finish to edge past Anthony Hamilton and book his place in the Snooker World Championship draw.

In the final qualifying round, 1997 world champion Doherty beat Nottingham’s Anthony Hamilton 10-9.

It meant the 42-year-old avoided the fate of fellow Crucible legends Steve Davis and Jimmy White, who both missed out this week.

Doherty came in at the final stage because of his higher world ranking, and let a 9-7 lead slip before coming from 52-12 behind in the deciding frame with a gutsy 62 break.

Turkish Delight

JOE Ward and David Oliver Joyce got Ireland off to a winning start on the opening day of the AIBA Olympic qualifiers in Trabzon, Turkey.

Ward, the current European light-heavyweight champion, recorded a 16-6 win over experienced Swedish light-heavyweight Kennedy Katende.

Meanwhile, Joyce had his hand raised in victory after Joe Cordina of Wales was retired by his own corner after taking two standing counts in the third.

Jennings hits ‘A’

Catríona Jennings has become the fourth Irish athlete to achieve the ‘A’ standard women’s marathon qualification time for the London Olympic games.

The Rathfarnham athlete ran 2:36.14 in the Rotterdam Marathon, almost 45 seconds below the ‘A’ standard.

Linda Byrne (2:36:23), Ava Huthinson (2.35:33) and Maria McCambridge (2:36:37) have also achieved the standard.

Her qualification leaves a serious selection headache for Irish Olympic chiefs as only three participants from each country are allowed to take part in London.