Saturday 24 February 2018

Trump stays cool in stifling heat

Judd Trump broke sweat but it was only due to the heating as he brushed aside Nigel Bond to reach the Haikou World Open quarter-finals in China.

The world No 1 compiled three century breaks as he beat seniors champion Bond (47) 5-1 to set up a last-eight tussle with Matthew Stevens, who has reached this stage with a borrowed cue.

The only complaint from Trump surrounded the venue on Hainan Island, where the heating made for uncomfortable conditions.

World No 2 Mark Selby will take on Australian Neil Robertson after they both recorded crushing wins.

Selby fended off Barry Hawkins 5-1, and Robertson toppled Graeme Dott 5-0. John Higgins had a surprisingly emphatic 5-0 win over Stuart Bingham, while Antrim's Mark Allen had runs of 82, 61 and 73 in battling from 2-0 behind to beat Robert Milkins 5-2.

Ding Junhui also took a while to get going, but a break of 127 in the fourth frame hauled him level with Hong Kong's Marco Fu and eventually also won 5-2.

boxing

TODAY marks D-Day for Ireland's Elite male boxers as they will no longer wear head-guards in competition.

The Irish Amateur Boxing Association (IABA) pencilled in March 1 to implement the new rule from the International Boxing Association.

IABA president Tommy Murphy said that they had decided to wait until after the Elite Championships to introduce the changes. The IABA had been given until June to do so.

Meanwhile, Elite champions Joe Ward, Michael Conlan and Sean Turner will be in action in the World Series of Boxing (WSB) on both sides of the Atlantic tonight.

Ward lines out for the British Lionhearts versus the Ukraine Otamans in London and Conlan and Turner for the USA Knockouts versus Italia Thunder in Reno.

golf

Richard O'Donovan continued to impress at La Manga to lead a four-strong group of Irish golfers into the knockout phase of the Spanish Amateur Championship.

The 22-year-old Lucan man hit a one-over-par 74 to add to his 71 on day one. Only he and Englishman Harry Casey came in under par overall and are tied for the lead.

O'Donovan will be opening up against Santi Vega de Seoane today.

Dermot McElroy (Ballymena) and Mourne's Reeve Whitson are also through after tying for seventh. They both hit scores of 75 and 73 (148) and will tee off against Curtis Griffiths and Victor Tarnstrom respectively.

Headfort's Rory McNamara also made the cut and will face Englishman Neil Raymond.

Brian Casey (Headfort) gut-wrenchingly missed the cut on a card play-off, on 153. Chris Selfridge (Moyola Park), Jack Hume (Rathsallagh), Nicholas Grant (Knock), Harry Diamond (Belvoir Park) and Castlerock's Aaron Kearney also missed out.

Irish Independent

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