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Seve backs Tiger to maul Augusta

GOLF: Seve Ballesteros believes Tiger Woods can make a winning return to golf at The Masters in a fortnight.

Ballesteros, recovering from the discovery of a brain tumour nearly 18 months ago, has been in Madrid this week to support the city's bid for the 2018 Ryder Cup and said: "I am pleased to see that Tiger Woods made the decision to come back and has finally decided to compete.

"If he decides to compete in the Masters it is because he knows that he has a good chance. We all know his potential and he knows the golf course very well, so I think he has a great chance to win."

Muller names squad to turn up the heat in Chile

HOCKEY: Gene Muller, the Irish national women's coach, has named his squad of 18 to take to next month's World Cup Qualifier in Santiago, Chile. With nine players from Leinster, five from Ulster and four from Munster, including captain Eimear Cregan, the task facing Ireland to pick up one of the three remaining qualifying tickets to this year's World Cup finals in Argentina is formidable.

IRELAND (Senior Women's squad for World Cup Qualifiers Santiago, Chile from April 24 to May 2) -- E Clarke (Leicester); B Cleland (vice-capt) (Ballymoney), L Colvin (Loreto), E Cregan (capt) (Catholic Institute), R Flinn (Old Alex), M Frazer (Maryland), M Goode (GK) (Bray), M Harvey (Pegasus), L Healy (Loreto), L Jacob (UCD), S McCay (Dragons), A O'Flynn (UCC), J O'Halloran (UCC), C Sargent (Cork Harlequins), N Small (Loreto), E Smyth (Railway), A Speers (Dragons), N Symmons (Loreto).

England must crack 209 to seal victory in Dhaka

CRICKET: England were in need of 209 runs to win the second Test in Dhaka in a minimum of 54 overs after bowling Bangladesh out for 285, with Shakib Al Hasan hitting 96. The visitors were 95 for one at the tea interval on the last day.

NBA: Charlotte 95 Washington 86 (OT), Indiana 98 Detroit 83, New York 109 Denver 104, Dallas 106 LA Clippers 96