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In brief: YMCA open gap at top of the table

YMCA surged into the outright lead of the Leinster League as their challengers faltered in the absence of international players, who were attending a weekend training session with Ireland coach Paul Revington.

Shorn the services of Joe Brennan and Gary Shaw, Glenanne could do no better than draw 3-3 with Fingal, for whom Paddy Gahan grabbed a last-minute equaliser.

The visitors also had a man-power crisis as David Bane was injured in the warm-up and Chris Neville had to leave the pitch with a bad back after scoring an early goal.

Though Pembroke Wanderers did not slip up against bottom-placed Weston, Monkstown also lost ground in a 2-2 draw with Railway Union.

In the absence of Irish hopeful Davy Fitzgerald and with second-team 'keeper Craig Allis laid up with flu, Monkstown had third-choice Chris Scollard between the posts. He was beaten just twice, by Mark English and Richie Forrest, while Brian Groves did the scoring at the other end.


An estimated television audience of over 100 million viewers watched on as China's Ding Junhui beat Hong Kong potter Marco Fu 10-4 in the final of the Masters at Wembley Arena last night.

Fu had to wait until the third frame to register his first point as Ding flew out of the blocks with breaks of 120, 74 and 61 to lead 3-1 at the end of the first session, and he surged into a 6-2 lead.

Fu threatened a comeback in the evening session by reducing the deficit to two frames but Ding coolly blasted a 94 and 83 on his way to clinching four straight frames to complete the win.


Shane Watson blazed a magnificent 161 not out, and clubbed a six to win the game, as Australia scored 297-4 to beat England by six wickets in the first one-day international yesterday.

Australia's score was the highest successful run chase in a one-day international at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Watson shared in two century stands, an opening partnership of 110 with Brad Haddin (39) and 103 for the second wicket with captain Michael Clarke (36).

Kevin Pietersen and Andrew Strauss had earlier blasted half -centuries, while Haddin fluffed three stumping opportunities as England made their imposing 294 in 49.4 overs. Dubliner Eoin Morgan made just eight.

Irish Independent