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Neumann set for Solheim

SWEDE Liselotte Neumann will renew her keen Knightsbrook rivalry with Meg Mallon at next year's Solheim Cup in Colorado.

Neumann (45), captain of the team held 12-12 last September by Mallon's US side in the junior competition at Knightsbrook, will lead Europe's defence of the Solheim Cup brilliantly won by Alison Nicholas and her squad at Killeen Castle.

Former US Womens Open winner Neumann is a veteran of six Solheim Cups, and she'll be hoping to help Europe clinch a first victory on American soil from August 16-18, 2013.

Mallon has been appointed captain of the home team.

"I'm extremely happy and honoured to have been selected," said Neumann.

TENNIS

Venus Williams' comeback from illness ended with a 6-4 6-1 defeat to Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska in the quarter-finals of the Sony Ericsson Open yesterday.

For Williams, whose sister Serena was eliminated by Caroline Wozniacki on Tuesday, the defeat marked the end of her first singles tournament since last year's US Open when she revealed she had been diagnosed with Sjogren's syndrome.

The auto-immune disease causes fatigue and joint soreness and, after doing well to reach the last eight by beating Ana Ivanovic, Williams looked tired in the latter stages of yesterday's match.

Meanwhile, James McGee and Sam Barry yesterday advanced to the second round of the singles in the ITF Futures event in Bahrain.

Dubliner McGee, the top seed, saw off American qualifier Even Song 6-4 6-1, and Limerick's Barry, the No 8 seed, scored a 7-5 1-6 6-3 victory over Bulgarian qualifier Alexander Lazov.

BOXING

IRELAND'S Elite boxers fly out to the Ukraine today for their final training camp before the last Olympic qualifier for European male boxers in Trabzon, Turkey.

Darren O'Neill, John Joe Nevin and Michael Conlan, who have already qualified for the London Games, are included in the 13-strong squad for the Kiev training camp.

World No 1 Katie Taylor, Tyrone McCullagh and Chris Phelan join the rest of the panel in Kiev next Monday.

Ireland will be aiming for seven Olympic places in Trabzon.

Con Sheehan, Tommy McCarthy, Joe Ward, Adam Nolan, Ross Hickey, David Oliver Joyce and Paddy Barnes line out at the qualifiers which begin on April 13.

Irish Independent