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Froome 'to target Tour'

CYCLING: Chris Froome made clear yesterday that he has no intention of playing second fiddle to compatriot and Sky team-mate Bradley Wiggins on the Tour de France.

The 28-year-old, winner of the Criterium du Dauphine on Sunday, said he wanted to be in a position to win the Tour for years to come.

"I've got my goals and personally where I want my career to go is to target the Tour, not just this year, but for the next six or seven years, and each time to try and contend for the yellow jersey," he said.

"I am driven by that goal," added the rider, who finished last year's Tour as runner-up to Wiggins.

This year's race starts on June 29 with Froome the official Sky team leader with Wiggins absent.

 

BAILEY WANTS CLARKE BACK

CRICKET: Australia's stand-in captain George Bailey admitted he was ready for injured Michael Clarke to reclaim the reins after his most trying day yet in charge of the side.

Australia were beaten by England in their ICC Champions Trophy Group A opener and yesterday news broke that David Warner had been suspended for an attack on England's Joe Root in a Birmingham bar following that match.

Australian hopes of victory over New Zealand were then undone by a washout at Edgbaston, when they had made a good start to defending 243 for eight. Bailey said: "It's a dream come true, but I'm pretty keen for Pup (Clarke) to come back."

 

SHARVIN IS CLOSE CHAMP

GOLF: Just five years after taking up the game, 20-year-old Cormac Sharvin from Ardglass Golf Club became the Irish Close champion, beating Paul Dunne by one hole in the final at Connemara yesterday.

Sharvin, who won the Silver Medal as leading qualifier in the AIG-sponsored event, disposed of Greystones' David Byrne in the morning semi-final and the Co Down man was in control for much of the final against Dunne.

 

KRISTOFF TAKES STAGE WIN

CYCLING: Alexander Kristoff of Norway won a sprint finish and Mathias Frank of Switzerland kept the yellow jersey after the fifth stage of the Tour de Suisse.

Kristoff, riding for Katusha, outpaced rivals Peter Sagan, Arnaud Demare and Matti Breschel at the end of the 178.4-kilometre trek.

BMC Racing's Frank holds a 23-second lead over Roman Kreuziger (Saxo-Tinkoff) in the overall standings.


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