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New York Yankees star Aaron Judge continued to mount his case for AL MVP on Sunday as he crushed a three-run, walk-off home run to complete a 6-3 comeback win against the Houston Astros.

All the momentum was with the Astros early coming off Saturday's meeting where they became the first team in 19 years to hold the Yankees hit-less, and they added to that history to begin this contest.

Jose Altuve gave the Astros a 1-0 lead with a first-inning home run, before the road team jumped ahead 3-0 with a two-RBI single to Maurcio Dubon in the fourth frame.

The Yankees did not have a hit through six-and-a-third innings – making it a streak of 52 at-bats without a hit, the longest dry spell by any team since 1974.

Giancarlo Stanton finally broke the seal with a 436-foot solo homer in the seventh frame, before D.J. LeMahieu tied things up with a two-run shot an inning later.

Neither team was able to find a run in the ninth, forcing extra innings, where Michael King was able to keep the Astros from scoring, setting up Judge to connect on the walk-off winner in the bottom of the 10th.

Judge is the current favourite for AL MVP, and the home run was his 28th of the season – six more than any other player.

Yankees starting pitcher Nestor Cortes put in a solid performance, striking out seven batters in five innings while conceding three earned runs from five hits and two walks.

Astros starter Jose Urquidy was even better, allowing just one run from one hit through seven complete innings.

With the win, the Yankees move their league-best record to 53-20, leading the second-placed New York Mets by six-and-a-half games.

McClanahan shows Cy Young quality

Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Shane McClanahan has emerged as the top choice for the AL Cy Young Award as the league's most outstanding pitcher, and he dominated the Pittsburgh Pirates in his side's 4-2 win.

McClanahan struck out 10 batters, holding the Pirates to one run from four hits and no walks through his seven full innings.

His dominance was rewarded, keeping the Rays tied at 1-1 until the seventh inning when they would finally find their rhythm and string together three consecutive two-out hits to make sure McClanahan had the lead before he was withdrawn, and was thus credited with the win.

White Sox issue Cease and desist to Orioles offense

Chicago White Sox ace Dylan Cease was at the top of his game on what turned out to be a great Sunday for star pitchers, striking out a career-high 13 batters in a 4-3 home win against the Baltimore Orioles.

His 13 strikeouts in seven complete innings was one shy of this season's most strikeouts in a game, set by Miami Marlins star Sandy Alcantara when he sat down 14 batters against the Atlanta Braves last month.

With the bat, the White Sox jumped ahead in the second inning courtesy of a two-run Gavin Sheets homer, and they held that lead throughout.

South Korea's Chun In-gee has managed to hold on and win the Women's PGA Championship by one stroke, despite finishing her week with back-to-back 75s on Saturday and Sunday.

Chun finished on five under to win her third major championship, but she entered the weekend with a massive lead after rounds of 64 and 69 had her at 11 under, six strokes clear of the chasing pack.

Only nine players finished the tournament under par, illustrating the difficulty of the course and conditions at Congressional Country Club.

In a tie for second was Australia's Minjee Lee – fresh off her U.S. Open win – along with American Lexi Thompson at four under.

Thompson entered the day at five under and shot a 73 to drop one stroke, while Lee came in at two under – and bogeyed her first two holes of the day – but went four under across her final 16 holes for a Sunday 70.

Thailand's Atthaya Thitikul claimed outright fourth place at three under, two strokes clear of the five-woman pack tied for fifth at one under.

That group had three South Koreans – Kim Hyo-joo, Kim Sei-young and Choi Hye-jin – to give the country four of the top nine.

In a notable performance, Australian Stephanie Kyriacou posted four consecutive even-par 72s and finished tied for 10th.

Xander Schauffele was the beneficiary of an 18th-hole double-bogey from leader Sahith Theegala, going on to win the Travelers Championship by two strokes with a birdie at the last.

Schauffele finished the tournament at 19 under with rounds of 63, 63, 67 and finally a 68 on Sunday as wind picked up and the scoring conditions worsened.

The win is the sixth of his PGA Tour career and his first singles win since January 2019, also collecting the Zurich Classic of New Orleans in a team format with Patrick Cantlay in April of this season.

It was Theegala controlling the final stages after he moved to 19 under and the outright lead with birdies at 13, 15 and 17 down the stretch, but after finding the fairway bunker on 18, he muffed his first attempt to get out, requiring another two shots to get to the green, before his bogey putt lipped out.

It meant Schauffele only needed par to claim the championship, and he went one better, finishing in style with a perfect drive, approach and putt for birdie.

Speaking on the 18th green after his winning putt, he said it felt incredible to convert a 54-hole lead for the first time in his career.

"It's incredible," Schauffele said. "I was looking at birdie just to get into a play-off and saw there was a bit of a hiccup with Sahith when I was standing on the tee.

"I knew I had to hit that fairway and hit it anywhere on the green to make par."

Theegala finished tied for second at 17 under along with J.T. Poston, who was one of three players to shoot 64 or better on Sunday (also Chesson Hadley and Scott Stallings).

In outright fourth was Michael Thorbjornsen following a week he will never forget, finishing at 15 under after being the only amateur to make the cut, closing his week with rounds of 65, 66 and 66 to make a statement about his future on the PGA Tour.

Hadley held outright fifth place at 14 under, going bogey-free with four birdies and an eagle for his 64, while Keith Mitchell and Kevin Kisner shared sixth place at 12 under, with Kisner carding a disappointing 71 on Sunday to take himself out of contention.

The round of the day came from Stallings, who went bogey-free with seven birdies for his 63, rounding out the top 10 in a tie for eighth along with Brian Harman, Chez Reavie, William McGirt and Nick Hardy.

A star-studded group finished tied for 13th at 10 under, featuring world number one Scottie Scheffler, number six Cantlay and fellow top-20 American Tony Finau. It was tough work for the stars, with an even par 70 for Scheffler on Sunday, while Cantlay entered the day one stroke off the lead and carded a 76.

Rory McIlroy and recent winner Lee Kyoung-hoon were in the group that completed out the top 20.

Five-time singles champion Venus Williams showed up at Wimbledon on the eve of the championships, sparking speculation over what role she will play.

The 42-year-old American has played just one tournament since losing to Ons Jabeur in the second round at Wimbledon last year.

That lone appearance came at the Chicago Open in August, when she was beaten in her opening match by Hsieh Su-wei.

Williams has not made a retirement announcement, and it may be that she intends to play an active part in Wimbledon, although she has not entered the women's singles or women's doubles.

The American great has seven grand slams among her 49 career singles titles and has won six Wimbledon doubles crowns with sister Serena Williams, among their 14 slams as sport's greatest sister act.

One avenue that may be open to Venus is mixed doubles. She was not listed on Wimbledon's entry list for the invitational doubles, an event for veterans. The mixed doubles line-up has yet to be revealed.

Williams was pictured at Wimbledon by a Getty photographer at the All England Club, carrying a red sports bag, and later in the evening posted on Instagram that she was at a Red Hot Chili Peppers concert at London Stadium.

Serena has entered the singles on a wildcard, having made her competitive comeback on doubles duty alongside Jabeur at Eastbourne after being absent from the tour since last year's Wimbledon. She is a seven-time singles champion at London's grass-court grand slam.

Novak Djokovic would be delighted by the prospect of facing Rafael Nadal in the Wimbledon final, as he targets revenge for his French Open loss to the Spaniard.

Nadal remains on course for a calendar Grand Slam after following up January's Australian Open victory with his 14th French Open title earlier this month, having overcome Djokovic in a quarter-final classic on the clay in Paris.

The Spaniard's Roland Garros triumph moved him two clear of Djokovic's tally of 20 grand slam titles, while his last-eight win over the Serbian was his 29th in the pair's head-to-head rivalry (Djokovic has 30 wins).

With 59 career meetings, the duo have met one another more often than any other men's pairing in the Open Era, and they could be set for a final showdown at Wimbledon after landing on opposite sides of the draw.

Speaking to Sky Sports, defending Wimbledon champion Djokovic said he would relish such a contest and insisted Nadal, who has not triumphed on the grass in London since 2010, is among the favourites to take home the title.

 

"If we get to face each other it means we're both in the finals, which I think we both want," Djokovic said.

"It's a very long way [away], but of course you have to put him as one of the favourites, even though he hasn't played at Wimbledon for the last three years [including the cancelled 2020 edition], I think.

"But still, he's Nadal, he has achieved what he has achieved throughout his career and also this year, of course, which gives you a lot of confidence in his case.

"I'm sure there's going to be a lot of great matches ahead for both of us, and if we get to face [each other] in the final… I'd love to face him in the final and get revenge for Paris!"

Nadal has beaten Djokovic in 11 of the duo's 18 grand slam meetings, although the Serbian holds a 2-1 advantage over their three Wimbledon contests, triumphing in the 2011 final and the 2018 semi-finals.

Djokovic begins his Wimbledon campaign by facing Kwon Soon-woo on Centre Court on Monday, with Nadal taking on Argentina's Francisco Cerundolo the following day.

This is shaping up to be a season to remember for the New York Yankees, but they made history for all the wrong reasons on Sunday.

The Yankees, who boast the best record in the major leagues in 2022, had been held to a combined no-hitter by the Houston Astros in Saturday's 3-0 defeat at Yankee Stadium.

But rather than come out firing in the teams' next meeting the following day, the Yankees threatened to suffer the ignominy of a stunning second consecutive no-no.

Jose Urquidy frustrated the home team for 6.1 innings before Giancarlo Stanton finally made good contact and homered 436 feet to center field.

That was the Yankees' first hit since the eighth inning of Friday's 3-1 home loss to the Astros, a streak of 52 consecutive at-bats – the longest run by a batting team without a hit since at least 1974.

It also tied the record for the most at-bats without a pitching team allowing a hit over the same period.

The Astros matched the feats of the 2012 Los Angeles Angels against the Minnesota Twins and Toronto Blue Jays and the 2014 Los Angeles Dodgers against the Philadelphia Phillies and Cincinnati Reds.

Houston own the only two no-hitters against the Yankees this century, with Saturday's hitless game following a 2003 no-no at Yankee Stadium.

Simona Halep is confident she would know how to handle a Wimbledon panic attack after her traumatic recent Roland Garros experience.

The former world number one is ready for her first return to action at the All England Club since landing the 2019 title, having missed out last year due to a calf injury.

With the 2020 championships cancelled due to the pandemic, it has been a three-year wait for Halep to make another SW19 appearance, and plenty has changed in her life since then.

She married last year and has a high-profile new coach in Patrick Mouratoglou, who helped to guide the career of Serena Williams for almost a decade.

Last month saw Halep suffer an on-court panic attack during a shock second-round defeat to Zheng Qinwen at the French Open, and she was quick to speak about the episode immediately after the match, determined it would be an important step in moving on.

"Hopefully it doesn't happen again because I didn't like it," Halep said in a news conference on Sunday, a day ahead of Wimbledon getting under way.

"It was coming from nowhere because I was leading the match. Probably just the pressure of the tournament, the fact that I struggled last year. I didn't believe that I'm strong enough, probably.

"But now I feel stronger, and I feel that if it's going to happen again, I will know how to handle it.

"It's never easy. It was really tough to handle it. But lately everyone goes through this, with all the situation in the world. I will not be hard on myself that I was weak in that match.

"I just take it as an experience and as a lesson, so next time I'll be better."

Halep has a tough Wimbledon opener against Karolina Muchova, an unseeded player who has reached the quarter-finals in the past two editions of the tournament.

That match will take place on Tuesday, but it will not open up play on Centre Court.

That is usually the honour afforded to the defending champion, but Ash Barty has retired since beating Karolina Pliskova in last year's final.

Some felt that Halep, having missed out last year when she would have been returning to defend the title, should have been given the opening slot this year; however, Wimbledon announced the privilege will go to world number one Iga Swiatek.

"I feel sad that I missed it because I was injured and didn't get the chance," Halep said. "Hopefully I can have another chance, so I can look forward to that."

She will need to win another Wimbledon title for that to happen and will hope the tie-up with Mouratoglou helps her achieve that ambition.

Mouratoglou said in an Instagram post that Halep's results in the clay-court season were "insufficient" for a player of her quality and said he would "take full responsibility" for those.

"I was surprised, shocked that he did the post and took everything on him," Halep said. "But it was not on him, it was me; I was not able to do better and to calm down myself when I panicked. It was new for me as well, and I was not good enough. We are much better after that day.

"We both probably learned some things about each other, and now we will handle better situations like those."

Serena Williams stands every chance of going on a winning run at Wimbledon, according to Ons Jabeur, who would love to meet the 23-time grand slam champion in the final.

Williams teamed up with Jabeur to play doubles at the Eastbourne International in the past week, the American's first competitive tennis since being forced to retire from a first-round clash with Aliaksandra Sasnovich at Wimbledon last year.

Seven-time Wimbledon singles queen Williams has not won a grand slam since 2017's Australian Open, and has lost two finals at SW19 during the drought, to Angelique Kerber in 2018 and Simona Halep in 2019.

Third seed Jabeur expects the 40-year-old WTA superstar to give a positive account of herself when she gets her Wimbledon campaign under way against Harmony Tan on Tuesday.

"I feel Serena was playing well and moving well. I think she can win matches at Wimbledon," Jabeur said in a BBC Sport column.

"We were put in opposite sides of the draw so that means we couldn't play until the final. That's okay - I'll send her to Iga Swiatek's half instead and leave the possibility of those two great players facing each other.

"I, for sure, didn't want to play her in the first round. You don't want to play Serena, especially at Wimbledon. But if it did happen then it would be amazing to play her and that would add another thing to the dream list for me."

 

Jabeur gets her own campaign under way when she faces Sweden's Mirjam Bjorklund on Monday, and believes the confidence gained from playing alongside Williams could prove crucial in her bid for a first title at this level.

"Playing with Serena Williams in the doubles at Eastbourne last week was an unbelievable experience and one which gives me added confidence as I try my best to win my first grand slam title at Wimbledon," Jabeur said.

"If she sees me as a great player and looks at me in that way then I can see myself that way, too."

Jabeur has never played a singles match against Williams, but having the chance to star alongside her surpassed that, allowing the Tunisian to get an insight into the mind of the great champion.

"The whole experience means I feel like I am the luckiest player in the world," said 27-year-old Jabeur.

Carlos Alcaraz has been checking out footage of Wimbledon greats including Roger Federer as he bids to sharpen up his raw grass-court game.

The 19-year-old Alcaraz has shot up to number seven in the ATP rankings after winning four titles this year, having begun 2022 outside the top 30.

However, he has little in the way of pedigree on grass, having been stopped in his tracks in round two last year by Daniil Medvedev, winning just seven games.

Of his titles this year, three have come on clay and one on a hard court.

Alcaraz reached the quarter-finals of the Wimbledon boys' singles in 2019, losing to American Martin Damm, and regardless of his recent stellar form, it is difficult to predict how he might fare in London this year.

It is clear that Alcaraz believes he can learn to play on the grass, and that he will pull out all the stops to become a champion on the fast lawns of London, beginning on Monday.

"I'm trying to copy some things from the best ones," he said. "I always watch videos: Federer, [Novak] Djokovic, Rafa [Nadal] and Andy [Murray] as well, trying to copy the moves."

That quartet has dominated at Wimbledon for two decades now. The last player not from that group to win the men's singles was Lleyton Hewitt in 2002, with Federer landing eight titles, Djokovic six, Nadal two and Murray two.

Federer is the only one of Wimbledon's 'Big Four' absent this year; knee trouble preventing him taking part.

Alcaraz, who is seeded fifth, predicted this Wimbledon will be a "tough" assignment in his own fledgling career.

However, seeing fellow Spaniard Nadal get to grips with grass early in his own career has instructed Alcaraz it is a surface that he should not fear.

Nadal was 22 when he won the first of his Wimbledon titles, and 20 when he first reached a final at the All England Club.

Alcaraz is not entirely ruling out challenging this year, because that is how he approaches every event he enters.

He will start on Monday against Germany's Jan-Lennard Struff, with that match given a prestigious Court One billing, such is Alcaraz's rising status.

"Of course, watching Rafa – I would say he is more for clay courts – winning so many tournaments on grass, winning twice here in Wimbledon, you'd think that you are able to adapt your game to grass courts," Alcaraz told a news conference on Sunday.

"But I would say I have a game that is going to adapt well on grass, trying to go to the net, playing aggressive.

"I would say I'm able to play well on grass, and it was said I couldn't prepare well for Wimbledon this year, but I always come to every tournament thinking I'm able to do good results or even able to win the tournament."

Li Haotong overcame Thomas Pieters in a dramatic play-off to win the BMW International Open, sinking a stunning 15-metre putt to claim his third victory on the European Tour.

Having taken a three-shot lead into the final day in Munich after hitting the front on day one, Li had the opportunity to seal a one-shot victory on the 18th after Pieters' excellent fourth-round 67 kept him in second place.

But LI's seemingly routine putt clipped the left-hand side of the hole and bounced away, bringing the 18th back into play as the duo ended the tournament locked together at 22 under par.

The Chinese 26-year-old looked to be on the back foot after a wayward chip left him some 15 metres out, but he made a terrific putt to seize the initiative before breaking down on the sidelines when Pieters failed to keep the play-off alive.

Having won his first European Tour title since 2018's Omega Dubai Desert Classic, Li told Sky Sports he was struggling to describe his emotions after almost giving up the sport entirely last year.

"I don't have the words to describe it right now," he said. "As soon as I chipped that ball, I thought another chance got away, I couldn't believe that was going to happen to me again.

"Ten months ago, I literally decided to quit golf, and somehow I'm where I am now... it's just f****** golf! It's hard to describe! I had no idea I could've won this play-off."

Li shot 70 on Sunday before wrapping up a triumph that had looked likely from day one in Germany, on which he equalled both his career-best round and the course record with an exceptional 10-under 62.

Meanwhile, Ryan Fox came third at 20 under after his own fourth-round 67, edging out Finland's Sami Valimaki in fourth by two shots.

Pablo Larrazabal, Nicolai von Dellingshausen and Romain Langasque shared fifth spot at 17 under, while 2010 Open winner Louis Oosthuizen finished level with Jordan Smith for a share of eighth.  

Andy Murray sympathises with Emma Raducanu's struggles since winning the US Open last year, noting her sudden rise to stardom has been "extremely difficult to navigate."

Murray also revealed he remains torn on whether he would remain in tennis after retiring, admitting an interest in coaching but saying he was not yet certain he would follow that path.

The two British hopes will both feature on Centre Court when Wimbledon begins on Monday, with Raducanu facing Alison Van Uytvanck before Murray takes on Australia's James Duckworth.

Raducanu has endured an injury-hit 2022 season, only lasting 36 minutes when making her first grass-court appearance of the year at Nottingham earlier this month, but has since declared herself "ready to go" ahead of the year's third grand slam.

Recalling Raducanu's stunning triumph in New York last September, Murray said the way she was thrust into the public eye has complicated her 2022 campaign.

"I never experienced what she experienced, your life changing overnight," he told the Telegraph.

"It's impossible to know if everyone who is then involved with you is looking out for your best interests. You know that your family wants the best for you. The families are of course going to make mistakes, because it's new to everybody.

"I would have worked with coaches when I was younger who were not necessarily the right people for me – and management companies, too.

"You question; 'Do they want what’s best for you or do they want to make lots of money off you?'

"It's extremely difficult to navigate."

Murray and Raducanu are the only British players to win a grand slam singles title since Virginia Wade's Wimbledon triumph in 1977, with the Scot's last major win coming at the All England Club Wimbledon in 2016.

Ahead of his tilt at a third triumph at SW19, the 35-year-old said his post-retirement plans remained uncertain.

"I have interests and things outside of tennis and I know that when I finally finish, everything will be fine. The world won't end," he added.  

"Whereas maybe when I was 25, and maybe at times even at the beginning of the [Amazon Prime] documentary in 2017 [about his injuries], I was still a bit like that.

"I've always been interested in coaching. There's also a chance that I might not be involved in tennis anymore.

"I feel right now that I would always have some involvement in tennis, but there are also times when I've been away from the sport and I've not watched any of the tournaments.

"That's when I'm just at home with the kids. It's pretty full-on, that side of things."

Andy Murray says recent form proves he can again compete at an elite level, declaring ahead of his Wimbledon opener on Monday: "There's still good tennis left in me."

Murray will face Australia's James Duckworth on Centre Court when the year's third grand slam gets under way, looking to better last year's run to the third round.

The last of Murray's three grand slam titles came at Wimbledon in 2016, but the 35-year-old impressed when beating Stefanos Tsitsipas and Nick Kyrgios at the Stuttgart Open earlier this month, eventually going down in three sets to last year's Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini after struggling with an injury.

Speaking at a pre-Wimbledon news conference, Murray said those displays had given him hope of a strong showing in London.

"I think I showed a couple of weeks ago that there's still good tennis left in me," he said. "I beat a guy [Tsitispas] in the top five in the world [at the time] and I was neck and neck, before the injury, with Berrettini, who's one of the best grass-court players in the world.

"I've been doing pretty well in practices, so I know the tennis is in there. I just need to bring it out during the event now."

 

Murray teamed up with coach Ivan Lendl for a third time in March, having won each of his three grand slam titles and two Olympic gold medals under the watch of the eight-time major winner.

The Scot revealed several coaches rejected the chance to work with him after he endured a series of injury-plagued seasons, and he hailed the 62-year-old Lendl for continuing to believe in him.

"Obviously having Ivan in my team helps," Murray said. "We've had a lot of success in the past, we know each other well, and he still believes in me. There's not loads of coaches and people out there that have done over this last period, but he has.

"For the most part in my career, when I had conversations with potential coaches it came off most of the time. Whereas this time round, I got turned down by a lot of coaches, so that was obviously difficult to deal with.

"I don't know how many you'd say were really top level, who would be able to help you win the major events.

"So that's also why I'm grateful Ivan has come back to work with me and help me try and achieve what I want to achieve."

The sputtering Arizona Diamondbacks are in need of a spark and hope a former Cy Young Award winner can ignite it.

Hoping to shake off a horrendous start to the season, Dallas Keuchel will make his Diamondbacks debut and try to help Arizona end a five-game losing streak in Sunday's series finale with the Detroit Tigers.

The 34-year-old left-hander signed a minor league contract with the Diamondbacks on June 6 following a desperate start to the season by the Chicago White Sox leading to his release.

The move to Arizona reunited him with pitching coach Brent Strom, who worked with Keuchel in 2015 when he won the AL Cy Young Award with the Houston Astros while going 20-8 with a 2.48 ERA.

The Diamondbacks are hopeful Keuchel can replicate the success he had with the Astros as opposed to the way he was knocked around with the White Sox over this season's first two months.

In eight starts for Chicago this season, Keuchel went 2-5 with a 7.88 ERA, permitting 49 hits and 20 walks in just 32 innings.

Among the 208 players with at least 30 innings pitched this season, Keuchel's 2.16 WHIP is the worst in the majors.

Prior to being called up by the Diamondbacks, he went 0-2 with a 4.50 ERA in two starts in the Arizona Complex League.

Andy Murray says recent form proves he can again compete at an elite level, declaring ahead of his Wimbledon opener on Monday: "There's still good tennis left in me."

Murray will face Australia's James Duckworth on Centre Court when the year's third grand slam gets under way, looking to better last year's run to the third round.

The last of Murray's three grand slam titles came at Wimbledon in 2016, but the 35-year-old impressed when beating Stefanos Tsitsipas and Nick Kyrgios at the Stuttgart Open earlier this month, eventually going down in three sets to last year's Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini after struggling with an injury.

Speaking at a pre-Wimbledon news conference, Murray said those displays had given him hope of a strong showing in London.

"I think I showed a couple of weeks ago that there's still good tennis left in me," he said. "I beat a guy [Tsitispas] in the top five in the world [at the time] and I was neck and neck, before the injury, with Berrettini, who's one of the best grass-court players in the world.

"I've been doing pretty well in practices, so I know the tennis is in there. I just need to bring it out during the event now."

Murray teamed up with coach Ivan Lendl for a third time in March, having won each of his three grand slam titles and two Olympic gold medals under the watch of the eight-time major winner.

The Scot revealed several coaches rejected the chance to work with him after he endured a series of injury-plagued seasons, and he hailed the 62-year-old Lendl for continuing to believe in him.

"Obviously having Ivan in my team helps," Murray said. "We've had a lot of success in the past, we know each other well, and he still believes in me. There's not loads of coaches and people out there that have done over this last period, but he has.

"For the most part in my career, when I had conversations with potential coaches it came off most of the time. Whereas this time round, I got turned down by a lot of coaches, so that was obviously difficult to deal with.

"I don't know how many you'd say were really top level, who would be able to help you win the major events.

"So that's also why I'm grateful Ivan has come back to work with me and help me try and achieve what I want to achieve."

Most of the members of the Jamaican team left the island Saturday morning for Palmas Del Mar in Puerto Rico for the 34th staging of the Caribbean Amateur Junior Golf Championships. The players will team up with Eryn Blakely in Puerto Rico and have at least one practice round ahead of Tuesday's start of the competition.

The team is said to be in high spirits, confident of representing the country well at the championships. Team coaches, Jonathan Newnham and Jason Lopez, as well as the most experienced male and female players Rocco Lopez and Emily Mayne, respectively, were upbeat about Jamaica's chances this time around having come close in 2018 and 2019 when they finished in second place on each occasion.

“We are ready to go and I am excited.  We have done our prep.  We are going there to make sure we understand the course properly and then go out there and execute as best as possible so I am excited for the journey ahead and look forward to a great week," said Dr Newnham.

Coach Lopez said everyone prepared well having been assessed on various golf courses across the island including Caymanas, Cinnamon Hill, Constant Spring, Half Moon, Sandals and Tryall.

"We are well prepared.  We had a great training series.  Between myself, Jonny and Alison (team manager) we were able to do a comprehensive review of all the kids’ games, testing on different golf courses (and) different facilities.  Of course, they all have their own personal coaches and I think they are well prepared for this event," said Lopez.

“The mental preparation will start now, to try and prepare them to perform without putting too much pressure on themselves.  That will be the job going forward."

The other team members on the boys’ side are 18 & Under - Aman Dhiman and Trey Williams; 15 & Under - Lek Drummond, Aaron Ghosh and Ryan Lue and 11-13 - Kemari Morris and Shasa Redlefsen; while the girls are 15 & Under - Samantha Azan and Mattea Issa, and 11-13 - Alessandra Coe who is making her first trip as a national representative.

 

 

The two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning will once again try to stave off elimination without Brayden Point.

Lightning coach Jon Cooper said Point skated on Sunday prior to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Colorado Avalanche but also mentioned he does not plan on changing his lineup, meaning Point will miss a fourth straight game.

The Avalanche lead the series 3-2 and are one victory away from winning their first Stanley Cup since 2001.

"It's unfortunate because it's a severe injury," Cooper said. "At this time of the year, everybody's trying to get back into the lineup and just there are some things you can't do.

"When you can't do what you're used to doing, it's tough on a player."

Point, the Lightning's leading scorer during each of the team's Cup runs over the last two seasons, suffered a lower-body injury in Game 7 of Tampa Bay's first-round series against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

He missed the next two rounds before returning for Games 1 and 2 of the Final series but was clearly limited with one total shot in the two games and has been out of the lineup since.

"It's extremely difficult for everyone involved because everyone cares so much. But there's no animosity or anything like that. They're just difficult conversations because everybody wants the same thing," Cooper said.

Point has been sorely missed on the power play, as the Lightning have gone just five-for-38 (13.2 per cent) with the extra skater in their past 13 games.

If Tampa can defend home ice on Sunday and force a Game 7, however, Cooper did not rule out Point returning for Tuesday in Denver. 

"He's still plugging along here and rehabbing and trying to get better. Who knows? If the series goes one more game, you never know," Cooper said.

"It's tough on these guys because they're such competitors."

Fabio Quartararo lamented a "rookie mistake" after twice crashing at the Dutch TT to see the 2022 MotoGP title race blown wide open again.

The Monster Energy Yamaha rider's lead over Aleix Espargaro at the top of the standings was cut from 34 points to 21 after failing to finish Sunday's race in Assen.

After a near blemish-free season up to this point, reigning world champion Quartararo uncharacteristically clattered into Espargaro early on when pushing for second place.

Both riders ended in the gravel, but whereas Espargaro was able to make up significant ground to finish fourth, Quartararo again came off his bike on lap 12.

He lost grip on his rear tyre and was sent flying over his handlebars in a nasty fall, with this his first MotoGP retirement since Valencia 2020.

Quartararo apologised to Espargaro immediately after the race, which was won by Francesco Bagnaia, and took full blame for the contentious incident.

"I made a rookie mistake. I wanted to push too much from the beginning," he told Canal+. "I apologise to Aprilia and to Aleix for putting him out of the track.

"It's with these mistakes that you learn for the future, but it was a really stupid mistake. We could very well have set a very good pace and fought for the win. 

"These are mistakes that you learn from for the future. I wanted to restart and try to score some points, but I saw that the bike was a problem. 

"I stopped, the team told me to restart in case of rain, but when I restarted, I could see that something was wrong.

"I tried, but I don't know [what happened]. We have to analyse the crash, but I lost the rear a bit abruptly, so we'll see what they say. I made a rookie mistake."

Despite seeing his lead cut, Quartararo still holds a healthy advantage at the top of the riders' standings heading into the five-week break.

Espargaro produced the ride of the day – and one of the best individual rides of the season – to recover from 15th after being sent off the track by his title rival.

The Aprilia rider overtook Jack Miller and Brad Binder on the final lap to finish just outside the podium places, but he could not make a serious dent in Quartararo's title lead. 

"I was very strong in that place, and Fabio knew it," Espargaro said of the early collision. "The reason Fabio did his movement is because his feeling with the bike is super-high. 

"We saw it also in Germany, corner one with [the overtake on Bagnaia]. He's not a dirty rider, but his confidence is that high.

"Today, it's not that he was arrogant. But because he felt super, a lot faster than the rest, he made a bad judgment.

"I knew this could happen. From this moment I said to myself – Fabio is almost perfect, he made no mistakes during the season, so if he makes one mistake you have to profit."

Ducati's poleman Bagnaia led from the start to move back to within 66 points of Quartararo with nine rounds to go.

The Italian, who is fourth in the championship, now has three wins and three retirements in his past six races.

Bagnaia never looked like relinquishing first place to Marco Bezzecchi, although he admitted to being "terrified" of a third DNF in a row when rain hit late on in the Netherlands.

"Looking at the gap with Bezzecchi, he was always catching," Bagnaia said. "I had to push again, I had to open this gap again to be smarter and more calm again later in the race.

"But then the rain came. When I saw the rain, I just slowed down a bit, but Bezzecchi was pushing again.

"So, it was very difficult. I was terrified to crash again, so the main thing was to finish the race. It wasn't easy, but I tried to be smart, I tried to not push over the limit."

Nick Kyrgios is convinced he can make Wimbledon stars "look pretty ordinary" and insists he will embrace being a crowd "villain" when he starts against British wildcard Paul Jubb.

The Australian world number 45 has looked sharp on grass already this month, reaching semi-finals in Stuttgart and Halle, where his runs were ended by Andy Murray and Hubert Hurkacz respectively.

Kyrgios, who could play Queen's Club Championship runner-up Filip Krajinovic in round two at Wimbledon, expects to have only a small portion of support when he begins against 22-year-old Jubb.

That match is set for Tuesday, and Kyrgios believes he is playing well enough to win through comfortably, ahead of the more obvious tests of his game that lie ahead.

Renowned as an immensely talented firebrand, the 27-year-old would rather be remembered as a grand slam champion, but there are some major obstacles blocking his path to that objective.

"I've played top-10 players in the world this year and made them look pretty ordinary," he said.

That claim is not without merit, given Kyrgios beat Stefanos Tsitsipas in Halle, Andrey Rublev in Miami, and Casper Ruud in Indian Wells.

He is picking and choosing when he competes to allow himself plenty of time to spend with friends and family, and is determined to find a successful work-life balance.

"I know where my game's at," Kyrgios added. "I know if I'm confident and playing well, I'm able to light it up whenever I want. I've got to pick and choose, so when I play, I've got to make sure I'm having some good results and putting in my best effort.

"If I figured that out earlier in my career, maybe the narrative may have been different, but I'm proud to be where I am at the moment.

"I know if I'm serving well and playing well, I can beat anyone. I've beaten pretty much everyone in the draw before."

Kyrgios lost to Russian Daniil Medvedev in the second round of the Australian Open in January and is disappointed the world number one has been banned, along with all Russian and Belarusian players, from Wimbledon.

That position has been taken because of the Russian-led invasion of Ukraine, but Kyrgios said: "My honest opinion is I don't think it was a good idea to ban the Russian players.

"Medvedev is the best we have in our sport right now. I think whenever we have cameras on and a lot of people tuning in, you want a lot of our players to be on showcase for the sport to grow.

"I'm disappointed that they're not here. It's weird not seeing Medvedev here, because we all know what he's capable of."

Medvedev will be far away from SW19 when Kyrgios begins his campaign against Judd.

The 'bad boy' image has stuck to Kyrgios, and he has often not helped his cause, with a string of incidents of volatile behaviour in his past. He accepts the crowd will be siding with the underdog on Tuesday.

"I'm used to wearing that black hat, the villain-type role, and I've just got to embrace it," he continued.

"I'm going to go out there and just play my game. If you look at the results of the last couple of weeks, if I just stick to my guns, the results say I should win pretty easy. 

"But I know that's not going to be the case, so I've got to be focused."

Andy Murray sympathises with Emma Raducanu's struggles since winning the US Open last year, noting her sudden rise to stardom has been "extremely difficult to navigate."

Murray also revealed he remains torn on whether he would remain in tennis after retiring, admitting an interest in coaching but saying he was not yet certain he would follow that path.

The two British hopes will both feature on Centre Court when Wimbledon begins on Monday, with Raducanu facing Alison Van Uytvanck before Murray takes on Australia's James Duckworth.

Raducanu has endured an injury-hit 2022 season, only lasting 36 minutes when making her first grass-court appearance of the year at Nottingham earlier this month, but has since declared herself "ready to go" ahead of the year's third grand slam.

Recalling Raducanu's stunning triumph in New York last September, Murray said the way she was thrust into the public eye has complicated her 2022 campaign.

"I never experienced what she experienced, your life changing overnight," he told the Telegraph.

"It's impossible to know if everyone who is then involved with you is looking out for your best interests. You know that your family wants the best for you. The families are of course going to make mistakes, because it's new to everybody.

"I would have worked with coaches when I was younger who were not necessarily the right people for me – and management companies, too.

"You question; 'Do they want what’s best for you or do they want to make lots of money off you?'

"It's extremely difficult to navigate."

Murray and Raducanu are the only British players to win a grand slam singles title since Virginia Wade's Wimbledon triumph in 1977, with the Scot's last major win coming at the All England Club Wimbledon in 2016.

Ahead of his tilt at a third triumph at SW19, the 35-year-old said his post-retirement plans remained uncertain.

"I have interests and things outside of tennis and I know that when I finally finish, everything will be fine. The world won't end," he added.  

"Whereas maybe when I was 25, and maybe at times even at the beginning of the [Amazon Prime] documentary in 2017 [about his injuries], I was still a bit like that.

"I've always been interested in coaching. There's also a chance that I might not be involved in tennis anymore.

"I feel right now that I would always have some involvement in tennis, but there are also times when I've been away from the sport and I've not watched any of the tournaments.

"That's when I'm just at home with the kids. It's pretty full-on, that side of things."

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