Galway confirm Cunningham job
ANTHONY CUNNINGHAM was last night confirmed as Galway's new hurling manager.
Cunningham, whose appointment for a three-year term was ratified by the Galway Hurling Board, will be assisted by Tom Helebert and Mattie Kenny.
The new manager, who captained Galway to the 1983 All-Ireland minor title and then led them to the U-21 crown in '86 before winning senior medals in '87 and '88, is under no illusions about the scale of the task.
"We have a lot of work to do. We need to get consistency into our performances and build from there," said Cunningham, who led Galway to the All-Ireland U-21 title this year with the same management team.
PAUL STIRLING has signed a new three-year deal with Middlesex that will keep him with the London-based club until 2014 -- while safeguarding his availability for key Ireland internationals.
The 21-year-old, who is in Ireland's squad for the Hong Kong Sixes that got under way early this morning, topped the Middlesex averages in the CB40 one-day competition last season and is seen one of the brightest young batsmen in world cricket.
Middlesex manager Angus Fraser said: "I have seen very few batsmen strike the ball as cleanly or hit it as far as Paul does. Last season he played half a dozen shots that I will never forget. We want to integrate him into our championship side, but there is no question about him not being available for Ireland's important games."
Manny Pacquiao has declared himself more fired-up than ever for his WBO welterweight title defence next month against Mexican Juan Manuel Marquez.
The boxers have met twice before, fighting to a draw in May 2004 before the Mexican lost his WBC super-featherweight title to the Filipino southpaw in a controversial split decision in March 2008.
However, Marquez has repeatedly claimed he won both contests and Pacquiao felt insulted after his opponent wore a T-shirt bearing the legend: 'We Were Robbed' when their November 12 showdown to be held in Las Vegas was promoted in the Philippines.
"I have never been so motivated as I am for this fight," Pacquiao said. "I want to prove that he (Marquez) was wrong in wearing that T-shirt claiming he won the last two fights. It's going to be personal."
CONOR NILAND tamely exited the ITF Futures event in Rodez, France yesterday, losing 6-1 6-4 to Romain Jouan. James Cluskey suffered his fourth doubles final defeat in as many weeks. The 25-year-old Dubliner and South Africa's Jean Andersen, the No 2 seeds, lost 6-4 6-3 to top seeds Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Albano Olivetti.
details in factfile