Emperor retired after Wash' shock
RACING: HOLY Roman Emperor has been retired to stud at Coolmore to replace George Washington following the discovery that last year's 2000 Guineas hero has fertility problems.
The Aidan O'Brien-trained Holy Roman Emperor had been second-favourite for this year's Newmarket Classic behind his old adversary Teofilo. A statement from Coolmore said: "In the very early stages of George Washington's stud career, his fertility has been questioned.
"Coolmore brought in veterinary expert Dr Dixon Varner from the USA to consult on the matter and are awaiting prognosis.
"George Washington has been suspended from covering and Holy Roman Emperor, another dual Group One-winning two-year-old by Danehill and Ballydoyle's leading 2000 Guineas prospect, has been retired to take his place."
Coolmore's Christy Grassick said: "We are fortunate to have a horse of Holy Roman Emperor's calibre to take over in order to facilitate our clients with mares booked to George Washington."
O'Brien added : "We were shell-shocked about it here because Holy Roman Emperor was our best horse. It's a sickener, but it's a business decision."
No motor for the Rocket SNOOKER: RONNIE O'SULLIVAN turned on the style to pocket a magnificent maximum 147 break at the Kilkenny Irish Masters as Ken Doherty crashed out after 5-0 defeat to fellow Dubliner Fergal O'Brien.
But in a bitter twist to his impressive total clearance, the two-time world champion later found out he had not won a car as he first thought. Organisers had promised a car to any player who pocketed a 147 break, but withdrew their offer claiming they had not been able to gain adequate insurance for the vehicle.
"I only went for the maximum because I thought I was going to win a car, but now I've found out I'm not going to win one, I'm gutted!" said O'Sullivan.
Earlier O'Brien kept local interest alive with a 5-0 whitewash of Doherty in the quarter-final, but he exited 5-6 to Barry Hawkins in last night's semi-final. Ronny O'Sullivan beat John Higgins on a similar scoreline in the other semi.
Blakeney hot for Rovers HOCKEY THREE Rock Rovers survived an early scare against bottom team Trinity to keep in touch with Leinster Division One leaders Glenanne and Pembroke Wanderers, who meet each other today. A second-half hat-trick from Peter Blakeney overturned Trinity's 1-0 half-time advantage to lead Rovers to a 5-2 victory.
In Paris, the Irish senior women's squad followed up Friday's 1-0 victory against France with a 1-1 draw against the same opposition in the second of their three-game series. After scoring the winner on Friday, UCD's Roisin Flinn snapped up a Rachel Mulligan corner to equalise with five minutes to go.
Ireland show promise EQUESTRIAN TWO double clear rounds helped Ireland to a second place in its first Nations Cup of the year in Wellington, Florida, on Friday night.
With Canada winning on just one time fault, Ireland's tally of four faults was more than enough to defeat the host team, who racked up 12 penalties during the two rounds of the competition.
Cian O'Connor with Irish Independent Echo Beach delivered the stand-out performances with two fault-free rounds.
Silver lining for Galligan ATHLETICS: IRELAND won one medal on the opening day of the US Collegiate Division 1 Athletics Finals at the University of Arkansas, when former Irish schools champion Roseanne Galligan took silver in the distance relay.
The Newbridge girl, in her first year at the University of Tennessee, gave her Lady Vols team an excellent lead after the opening 1200m leg. They were ranked fourth beforehand and Galligan has still the 4x400m final to come.
Clonmel's Thomas Chamney came through his qualifying round, finishing third in his heat in 1:49.06 to make the final, where his early season 1:47.82 run makes him a medal favourite.
Five Irish reach finals BOXING: FIVE Irish boxers have a chance of gold at the Multi Nations finals in Zagreb following semi-final victories yesterday.
Athy duo David Oliver Joyce and John Joe Joyce are joined by Ryan Lindberg (Immacullata, Belfast), Darren Sutherland (St Saviour's, Dublin) and Ken Egan (Neilstown, Dublin).
Light flyweight Paddy Barnes (Holy Family, Belfast) and flyweight Conor Ahern (Baldoyle) lost out in their semis to respective French and Russian opponents.
Hoops pip St Vincent's BASKETBALL ST VINCENT'S hopes of retaining their Superleague title bit the dust at the Arena last night as the Shamrock Hoops won 105-95 to book a quarter-final tie away to UCC Demons next weekend.
On the final weekend of the regular season, Vincent's had led by 12 points at half time but by the end of the third, Hoops had narrowed the gap down to four. And with Vincent's struggling to find the scores outside of their two American's, Hoops pulled away with Ian O' Boyle and Jonathan Reed converting important free throws down the stretch.
DART Killester meanwhile were crowned Northern Conference champions with a game to spare after defeating Star in front of the biggest crowd of the season at the IWA.
Killester had opened up a 19 point lead in the second quarter and although Star pulled it back to three, crucial baskets from Damien Sealy and Paddy Kelly saw Killester back in control at the interval.
Ballina, who defeated UCD at Belfield, must now settle for second place and a home quarter final with Killarney next weekend.
The winners of that game will face Tralee who were crowned Southern Champions midweek.