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In brief: Wayland lifts silver medal

Athletics: Wexford woman Catherine Wayland came up with a medal for Ireland on the opening day of the Paralympic World Championships in Christchurch, New Zealand yesterday.

Wayland was delighted with her silver medal when finishing second in the F51 Discus final with a throw of 13.56m, improving on the 13.19 she registered in the qualifying round earlier in the competition.

"I am delighted with my performance as it has been 13 years since my last major championship medal," said Wayland.

"I also have the discus competition to come and am refocusing now on delivering another top performance. I dedicate this medal to my son Calum and coach Pat Furlong."


Mike Kigen, the highly ranked Kenyan, gave an exhibition of top-class running to win the IAAF International Cross-Country over the Greenmount course in Co Antrim yesterday.

This was Kigen's second successive victory in the event as the 25-year-old turned on the power over the final circuit to win by six seconds from his 20-year-old fellow countryman Tinus Mbishei in 26 minutes seven seconds.

Runners from Africa filled the first six places, relegating last year's runner-up, Andy Vernon of England, to seventh place, 56 seconds adrift.

Charlotte Purdue, the recent winner of the European junior title, had a handsome margin to spare over her opponents when winning the women's event, easily getting the better of another overseas runner, Louise Steel. Purdue is an outstanding prospect and the 18-year-old seems to have a bright future.

Elsewhere, Ciara Mageean, the up and coming Irish middle distance runner from Co Down, finished seventh in the mile at the New Balance Indoor Games in New York. He time was 4 minutes 38.81 seconds with victory going to the former NCAA champion Jen Simpson, in 4:28.60.

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golf: Rory McIlroy has surprised himself to be in second position in his first event of the New Year ahead of the final round of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

McIlroy holed a 30-foot eagle on the final green on day three in a round of 65 to jump to 13-under par but trail five strokes behind Abu Dhabi defending champion Martin Kaymer.

Kaymer, who recorded a 66 for an 18-under-par tally, will bump Tiger Woods out of No 2 in the current World rankings not only by simply finishing in the top seven, but also in an event he's won twice before.

"I'm surprised to be where I am so early in the year, and if you had seen me hitting balls last week in Dubai, you wouldn't have said I'd make the cut," said McIlroy.

Reigning US Open champion Graeme McDowell (71) is sharing sixth position on nine-under par.


gaelic games: Cavan recovered from comatose beginnings at Breffni Park to record their first win in the Dr McKenna Cup (SF) by 0-12 to 1-4 over Queen's University, Belfast.

Cavan hit five points without reply to lead by 0-6 to 0-4 at the break after Queen's corner-forward Joe O'Brien saw red in the 11th minute.

A goal direct from a free by Niall McKenna (Tyrone) in the 52nd minute gave Queen's a lift but Cavan finished strongly with three unanswered points.


Thick fog brought a premature end to the Waterford Crystal Cup (SH) quarter-final, which was switched from Limerick to Newtownshandrum last night.

The game was shaping up for a tight finish with Waterford IT holding a two-point advantage over UL -- 1-11 to 1-9 -- before the referee called a halt to the game after 48 minutes.


equestrian: Cian O'Connor, Ireland's sole entrant in the Arab League World Cup Grand Prix, took third place with the Irish-bred gelding Larkhill Cruiser at Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates.

Meath-based O'Connor, who has now successfully taken part in three legs of the Arab World Cup League, was one of 11 riders through to the second round from a starting field of 27 at the Sharjah Equestrian and Racing Club grounds, but he had to concede victory to Syria's Ahmed Hamco and his World Equestrian Games mount, the former Ben Maher ride Wonderboy III.

Hamco was the only rider to achieve a double clear round in the Grand Prix, with Saudi Arabian runner-up Khaled Al Eid, like O'Connor, incurring four faults first time out.


basketball: As they bid for back-to- back titles in the cup at the National Arena next weekend, Killester edged out Neptune 63-32 down in Cork last night.

Following two defeats in a row in the league prior to last night, Killester had trailed by nine points heading into the final quarter.

But with John Behan achieving a season's best with 20 points, Killester clinched victory with 32 seconds to go when Jermaine Turner sunk two free throws.

Killester's cup final opponents, UCD Marian, meanwhile, also won away to Moycullen on a 91-73 scoreline while Star will be hoping to return to winning ways in today's big Ulster derby with Jordanstown after defeat to UL Eagles in Limerick last night.


cricket: Tim Southee took five for 33 and Jesse Ryder smashed 55 from 34 balls as New Zealand thrashed Pakistan by nine wickets in the first one-day international in Wellington.

Pakistan won the toss and elected to bat at the Westpac Stadium, but were dismissed for just 124 in 37.3 overs.

And the home side cruised to their victory target with more than 32 overs to spare to take a 1-0 lead in the six-match series. Southee took the first three wickets to fall as Pakistan slumped to 29 for three and were never able to recover.


hockey: Frost took its toll on the women's Irish Senior Cup ties as well as the men's and women's Irish Junior and Irish Trophy games.

The main focus centred on the women's Irish Senior Cup clash between Pegasus and Loreto, but this tie was aborted during Loreto's trip North when they were informed that the Queen's University pitch was unplayable.

However, action did go ahead at other venues in the North. Cork Harlequins and UCD came away with wins over Ards and Belfast Harlequins respectively.

Cliondha Sargent scored in the Cork side's 1-0 victory, while Rachel Burke notched a brace in UCD's 2-1 triumph.

Hermes slammed Corinthians 8-0 and Old Alex knocked out Pembroke 2-1 while Lurgan and Ballymoney also advanced at the expense of Glenanne and Catholic Institute.

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