Wednesday 25 April 2018

In brief: Williams earn surprise pole

MOTORSPORT: Nico Hulkenberg caused a sensation in qualifying for the F1 Brazilian Grand Prix by claiming Williams' first pole position for five and a half years.

Not since the European Grand Prix at the Nurburgring in May 2005 have the Grove-based marque claimed top spot, but Hulkenberg made the most of the unusual conditions at Interlagos to clinch pole.

Behind the 23-year-old German are the four main title contenders in Red Bull duo Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber, along with McLaren's Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso.

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GOLF: Chris Williams ensured the 2010 European Senior Tour season will go right to the wire after a five-under-par 67 gave him a share of the lead with former Ryder Cup captain Sam Torrance -- who fired a record-equalling 63 -- going into the final round of the OKI Castellon Senior Tour Championship.

Williams, who is €39,259 behind Thailand's Boonchu Ruangkit in the Order of Merit, set up a fascinating final day of the season by carding four birdies in the last seven holes of his second round at Club de Campo del Mediterraneo. The South African needs to either win or finish second and hope that Ruangkit is worse than 28th if he is to capture the John Jacobs Trophy, given to the leading Senior Tour player.

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Trophies won by the late Kitty MacCann, including her British Women's Matchplay triumph of 1951, have been presented to Tullamore GC. The bequest also includes six international medals and her Irish Close awards for 1949 and 1961.

Her nephew, Leonard Dolan, who officiated at a special function in 2001 to mark the golden jubilee of Mrs MacCann's British success, has also presented a commemorative trophy to the ILGU for competition by juniors at Tullamore next season.

A native of Clonmel, she became a hugely popular figure at Tullamore GC where she was remarkably modest about her golfing achievements until her death earlier this year.

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Rebecca Coakley, Martina Gillen and Tara Delaney of Team Ireland trailed the leader board at the Korea Ladies Masters and well off the pace of five under par set by Melissa Reid of England and Korean Soo-Jin Yang.

Gillen had the best round of the three Irish players on yesterday signing for a 74 -- a nine over par total -- with Coakley finishing on 77 on 10 over par and Tara Delaney carding 80, to finish on 16 over.

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HOCKEY: Ulster teams struggled in yesterday's second round of the Irish Hockey League where Cork C of I, thanks to a hat-trick from John Jermyn, grabbed the spotlight in their 3-2 away win over Cookstown in Pool A.

Glenanne had to settle for a 3-3 home draw against Lisnagarvey at Tallaght, while Corinthian went top of Pool A with a 3-0 away win over Annadale. Reigning champions Pembroke Wander underpinned their lead in Pool B, coming from behind to pip visitors YMCA 3-2. In the women's league Hermes bagged a 2-1 away victory over Catholic Institute thanks to a late Anna O'Flanagan winner.

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CYCLING: Ireland's Felix English stunned quadruple Olympic gold medallist Chris Hoy at the European track championships yesterday after Briton Hoy blew a huge lead against the teenager with the slowest qualifying time.

Hoy was comfortably ahead in the first round of the individual sprint only for 18-year-old English to take him and everyone watching by surprise with a late surge to the line.

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BASKETBALL: It was back-to-back victories for DCU Saints with the rotation of Ken Lacey and Pat Glover yielding 32 points for Vinny O'Keefe's men at the Kingfisher gym last night.

Moycullen, in the absence of two of their starting five in Garnett Griffin and James Loughnane, had got back to a point at one stage but with Eoin Darling and James Donnelly limiting Cian Nihill to 13 points, Saints pulled away in the final minute to secure an 80-66 victory. Elsewhere, UCD Marian ran Belfast Star close at Belfield but American Clayton Longmire kept UCD at bay with a 32-point haul to seal a 85-75 win.

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RUGBY UNION: Bruff caused a huge upset in the Munster senior cup when they dumped Cork Constitution out 11-5 at Kilballyowen yesterday.

Brean Deady had a 19th minute try for Bruff in what was the only score of the first half. Two Brian Cahill penalties on 59 and 65 minutes had Bruff 11-0 clear and while Frank Cogan had a try for Con 10 minutes from the end, the conversion miss by Richie Lane brought a sigh of relief from the Bruff fans who enjoyed a first ever cup win over the Cork side.

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TENNIS: Ireland's Sam Barry yesterday celebrated capturing a doubles title in an ITF Futures event just four weeks after starting out on his adult professional career.

Barry, partnered by fellow 18-year-old Mikelis Libietis of Latvia, defeated Slovenian duo Rok Jarc and Tom Kocevar-Desman in the final of the outdoor hardcourt tournament in Heraklion, Crete.

The Limerick right-hander and Libietis showed nerves of steel, edging their fellow seeded opponents in a champions' tie-break by two points after the first two sets were shared, and finishing 7-6 (8/6) 6-7 (4/7) 11-9 winners.

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HORSE RACING: Goldikova created history by becoming the first horse to win at three successive Breeders' Cups with another sensational victory in the Mile.

Drawn wide in stall 10 out of 11 and starting as 6/4 favourite, jockey Olivier Peslier settled Freddie Head's wonder mare in sixth, just behind Godolphin's Delegator with Paco Boy even further behind, before going to seal victory. William Hill make Goldikova a 7/2 chance to return in 2011 in a bid for a fourth Mile.

Sunday Independent

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