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Lakers fight back to seal NBA title Armstrong makes his move in mountains Rugby pays respects as England's Ripley dies

BASKETBALL: The LA Lakers rallied from a big early deficit to win their second successive NBA championship with a cliff-hanging 83-79 game seven victory over the Boston Celtics.

The victory gave the Lakers a 16th championship and a record 11th for coach Phil Jackson as they also became the first team to retain the championship since winning three in a row from 2000.

As the final buzzer sounded, Lakers' purple and gold confetti fell from the rafters and the Los Angeles players charged onto the court to celebrate victory over their greatest rivals.

"This one is by far the sweetest because it's against them (Boston) and because it's the hardest one by far," Kobe Bryant said after he was presented with the NBA Finals MVP award.

Crowds of rowdy revellers poured onto the streets around the Staples Center after the win, rocking cars, setting bonfires and throwing rocks and bottles at police officers.



Cuddily injury hinders hopes for First League

ATHLETICS: Ireland's hopes of retaining their First League status at the European Team Championship in Budapest this weekend have been hit by the loss of Joanne Cuddihy.

The Kilkenny 400m star had to pull out after spraining her ankle last weekend. Cuddihy had been named to run the 200m and 400m, and the 4x400m relay.



Armstrong makes his move in mountains

CYCLING: Lance Armstrong turned in a strong performance on yesterday's mountainous Tour of Switzerland sixth stage to finish fifth behind solo winner Robert Gesink.

Rabobank rider Gesink leads the overall standings with Columbia's Rigoberto Uran in second, 29 seconds behind him, and Switzerland's Steve Morabito third at 36 seconds, while Armstrong moved up to seventh, 55 seconds adrift.



Rugby pays respects as England's Ripley dies

RUGBY: Tributes have been paid to former England international Andy Ripley, who passed away yesterday at the age of 62 after a battle with prostate cancer.

Meanwhile, it has been announced that the World Cup will be broadcast on US network television for the first time after the IRB announced that NBC has secured rights to the 2011 and 2015 events.

MLB: Cincinnati 7 LA Dodgers 1, Detroit 8 Washington 3, Minnesota 1 Colorado 5, Chicago Cubs 3 Oakland 2, Boston 8 Arizona 5, NY Yankees 1 Philadelphia 7, Cleveland 4 NY Mets 6, Pittsburgh 4 Chicago White Sox, Atlanta 3 Tampa Bay 1, Florida 4 Texas 6, Kansas City 5 Houston 2


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