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Hamilton urges McLaren to act on need for speed Irish boys regain Cardigan Cup

F1: Lewis Hamilton has called on McLaren to beef up his car in qualifying if he is to have a decent crack at this year's Formula One world title.

Despite Jenson Button's win in Australia on Sunday, and McLaren collecting 54 points from the opening two grands prix to sit second in the constructors' championship behind Ferrari, their Achilles heel has so far been their one-lap pace.

"It's become clear we need to improve our qualifying pace if we're to have a regular shot at winning races," said Hamilton. "It's all very well being quick in the race, but if you can't make up places from your grid position, then your race is still going to be a struggle."

Irish boys regain Cardigan Cup

GOLF: Ireland completed a convincing victory over Wales in their boys' golf international at Cardigan yesterday.

Leading 8.5-3.5 overnight, they won the final singles session 5-3 for an overall 13.5-6.5 success and regained the Cardigan Cup. Fota Island's Colm O'Sullivan was the star as he was the only player to win all of his three matches

Egan, Barnes and Taylor in squad

BOXING: Olympic medalists Ken Egan, Paddy Barnes and World champion Katie Taylor are in the Irish squad for the Men's and Women's Prime Ministry Tournament which begins in Turkey next Tuesday. Beijing Olympians John Joe Nevin and John Joe Joyce have also been selected.

O'Brien knocked out by Higgins

snooker: Mark Allen qualified for the last 16 of the China Open in Beijing as he defeated Graeme Dott 5-1 yesterday. Kent-based Irishman Gerard Greene was beaten 5-3 by Ding Junhui. Dubliner Fergal O'Brien put up a fight before being beaten 5-3 by current world champion John Higgins.

NBA: Indiana 102 Sacramento 95, Philadelphia 93 Oklahoma City 111, Chicago 105 Phoenix 111, Milwaukee 107 LA Clippers 89, Houston 98 Washington 94.