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Equestrian: Saudis let off Olympic hook

Billy Twomey and Denis Lynch are scheduled for action at the fifth round of the Global Champions Tour in Cannes this weekend. But all the buzz on the international show jumping circuit is about the Court of Arbitration for Sport's (CAS) sensational decision to slash bans previously imposed on Saudi Arabian riders.

The door to the London Olympics reopened for the Saudi team after CAS reduced suspensions imposed by the FEI on Khaled Al Eid and Abdullah Sharbatly from eight months to two.

Irish showjumpers also compete at Spruce Meadows, Canada; Pforzheim, Germany; Comporta, Portugal; Drammen, Norway; San Remo, Italy; and Hagen, Germany this weekend.


Colm Moriarty celebrated his 33rd birthday on Tuesday and hopes to give himself a nice cheque at the €500,00 Saint Omer-Open in France this week.

The Athlone man opened with a two-under-par 69 leaving him in joint seventh place, two shots off the pace.

Simon Thornton was joint 23rd spot after a level-par 71.

Meanwhile, Portmarnock's Adrian Morrow showed his class as he swept into the lead at the European Seniors International Championship in Austria.

The Irish Seniors champion fired a one-under-par 70 over the Achensee course to take a one-stroke lead over Switzerland's Markus Frank.


Newcomers Drew Carlisle and Davy Carson were on the mark as Ireland levelled their three-match series against Spain with a 3-2 victory in Santander yesterday.

Ireland trailed twice as Roc Oliva and Xavi Leonart beat 'keeper David Harte in the first half. But both times the Irish produced a swift response.

The first came from Harte's twin Conor and then Carlisle volleyed home. Carson chimed in with his first goal for Ireland in the second half.

The series will be decided today when the two nations meet once more (12.45).

Ireland -- D Harte, J Bell, J Bruton, C Cargo, K Carroll, D Carson, R Gormley, C Harte, J Jackson, E Magee, M watt. Subs: J Lynch, S O'Donoghue, P Brown, S Cole, D Carlisle.

Irish Independent