Friday 23 February 2018

in Brief: Lee powers to Thiam victory

BOXING: Andy Lee claimed the 21st victory of his career at the University of Limerick last night after Mamadou Thiam retired on his stool at the end of the second round.

Lee had been totally dominated up to that point and had already staggered the Paris-based Senegal-born middleweight into a neutral corner in the opening frame.

Thiam appeared to indicate that he couldn't continue because of a back injury.

Meanwhile, John Waldron claimed the vacant Irish light heavyweight title with a 97-91 points win over Limerick's Jamie Power on last night's undercard.

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HOCKEY: The men's and women's Irish Hockey League semi-finals provided drama aplenty yesterday at Grange Road.

Glenanne bit the dust against holders Pembroke, losing 5-4 after extra-time, while Hermes' penalty shoot out defeat by Railway Union raised eyebrows and much discussion at the end.

Glenanne had much to bemoan about this defeat having fought back from a 4-0 deficit. Goals from Alan Southern (2) and one each from Alan Giles and Mick O'Connor had Pembroke riding high before Glenanne took over completely putting them on the rack. But it was Pembroke who won the day converting a silver goal corner with the full time buzzer sounding.

The other men's semi-final finished with extra- time deciding the issue in favour of Lisnagarvey, the Down outfit ousting Corinthians on a 6-5 scoreline. Railway Union defeated Hermes 3-2 while Cork Harlequins came back from the dead to snatch a 3-2 victory over Pegasus in the women's semi-finals.

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CRICKET: Kyle McCallan continued his rich vein of form yesterday when hitting his third unbeaten century in a row.

The all-rounder scored 131 not out in helping Warringstown beat Ballymena by five runs yesterday which followed his unbeaten 145 in the Irish Senior Cup against Old Belvedere and 146 two weeks ago against North Down in the Ulster League.

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CYCLING: Cadel Evans led a sprint finish to win the seventh stage of the Giro d'Italia two seconds ahead of current race leader Alexandre Vinokourov.

Evans spent much of the race in the leading pack but attacked 10km from the line along with Damiano Cunego and Vinokourov and saved enough energy to lead into the tight streets of Montalcino to the finish.

Cunego came second and Vinokourov third. Vinokourov moved above Vincenzo Nibali in the overall standings after the Italian fell.

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GOLF: A two-under-par round for Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano on day three of the Mallorca Open in Spain, was enough to earn him a share of the lead on four-under with Pelle Edberg of Sweden at Pula Golf Club. The leaders are a shot clear of Scott Hend of Australia with Peter Hanson of Sweden and Alejandro Canizares in the chase on two under.

Overnight leader James Kingston of South Africa dropped to one-under overall after a four-over round of 74.

Colm Moriarty of Team Ireland was the best of the three Irish players and is in a tie for 52nd place after finishing with a 74 for a total of eight-over, dropping two shots on the front nine followed by three bogeys on the back nine.

Damien McGrane was level par for 12 holes despite losing shots on 15 and 17 making the turn in a two-over par 37. But a double bogey on the sixth left him finishing with a 38 and signing for a nine-over total.

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Padraig Harrington has revealed that he will undergo minor knee surgery just 23 days before the US Open at Pebble Beach.

The Dubliner, 38, has been bothered by a knee injury he picked up playing five-a-side soccer with friends at Christmas and will have key-hole surgery to repair a cartilage tear. As a result, he has cancelled plans to add Celtic Manor Wales Open to his schedule and opted to undergo surgery on May 25.

"My doctor has advised having a minor procedure in the very near future to prevent the issue developing," said Harrington.

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Alison Walshe of Team Ireland hit three-under-par through 13 holes to move within one shot of team-mate, Rebecca Coakley, who is currently in share of seventh place on five-under on day three of the UniCredit Ladies German Open.

Overnight leader Linda Wessberg of Sweden remains on 10 under having played three holes in level par and is now two shots off the new leader, Melissa Reid of England, who birdied the first three holes at Gut Haeusen Golf Club to go 12 under.

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ATHLETICS: Top Irish distance runner Martin Fagan faces his best field of runners since the Beijing Olympics when he competes in today's Great Manchester 10km road race in which double Olympic champion, Haile Gebrselassie, is seeking to break the world record.

Fagan comes into the event fresh from two weeks training in southern Portugal. Fagan will need to be at his best to be a factor as Gebrselassie -- the amazing 37-year-old Ethiopian -- has made no secret of his determination to claim another world record on the road for this distance which stands to the credit of the Kenyan, Michael Kogo, at 27 minutes 1 second.

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EQUESTRIAN: Tipperary-born Shane Breen continued his run of good form yesterday with a fourth place in the La Baule Derby in France.

One fence down stopped the 35-year-old rider from being in contention for the e16,500 top prize, but Keith Prescott's Irish-bred Mullaghdrin Gold Rain produced an impressive turn of speed to net Breen a respectable e5,000 for his performance.

Sunday Independent

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