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Higgins wary of doubt on return Roche moves up to 7th as Gilbert takes stage

Snooker: John Higgins admits he expects some players to doubt him when he returns from his six-month suspension.

As the world's top players gather for the World Open in Glasgow, Higgins continues his enforced absence from the sport.

The former world champion was cleared of match-fixing allegations at a two-day tribunal earlier this month but admitted breaching rules around betting.

Higgins admitted he gave the impression to undercover reporters that he would throw frames for financial gain, but he insisted throughout his case that he had done so only under intimidation and had no intention of carrying out their wishes.

The 35-year-old knows he will never shake off the controversy but he is determined to return to the sport he loves.

"I don't think it will ever be resolved," said Higgins. "I know it's going to be tough, there will be players who doubt me and fans who doubt me, but all I can do is just get on and be myself."

Harrington relishing Cup battle with Tiger

Golf: Pádraig Harrington is champing at the bit for the Ryder Cup to arrive -- and so, he suspects, is Tiger Woods.

For the first time in their careers the pair have needed wild cards after failing to qualify and with the match at Celtic Manor now less than two weeks away, Harrington has spoken of the extra pressure that brings.

"When you get picked you are under the spotlight more," said the Dubliner. "You have something to prove, in many ways you're trying to justify it."

Just as he states he would have picked himself "100pc", largely because of the experience he brings to a side containing six uncapped players, he is totally sure he would have selected Woods if he had been in Corey Pavin's shoes.

"He is the number one golfer in the world still by rankings, he is showing decent form and he has a presence -- an intimidation factor," said Harrington.

Roche moves up to 7th as Gilbert takes stage

CYCLING: Belgian Philippe Gilbert proved he was on track for the world championships with his second stage win in the Tour of Spain yesterday.

Overall leader Vincenzo Nibali of Italy placed sixth in a front group of 11 riders, including Irishman Nicolas Roche, who finished 16th. He is now in seventh overall.

MLB: Pittsburgh 4 Arizona 3, Baltimore 3 NY Yankees 4, Philadelphia 9 Washington 1, Florida 0 Chicago Cubs 2, NY Mets 4 Atlanta 6, Boston 9 Toronto 11, Tampa Bay 3 LA Angels 4, Houston 5 Cincinnati 3, Chicago White Sox 2 Detroit 9, Kansas City 4 Cleveland 11, Minnesota 1 Oakland 3, St Louis 14 San Diego 4, Seattle 2 Texas 1, LA Dodgers 5 Colorado 7, San Francisco 0 Milwaukee 3.