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Tyler Hamilton implicates Lance Armstrong

Hamilton implicates former team-mate Armstrong in institutionalised doping offences

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UPDATED:

13:06 GMT, 3 September 2012

Lance Armstrong's former team-mate Tyler Hamilton has lifted the lid on what he claims was institutionalised doping at the US Postal Service team.

In his new book The Secret Race, extracts from which were reproduced in The Times on Monday, Hamilton said Armstrong's former team was 'two years ahead of what everybody else was doing' in terms of its alleged doping activities.

Accused: Tyler Hamilton claims Lance Armstrong and other members of the US Postal Service team took blood-boosting drugs

Accused: Tyler Hamilton claims Lance Armstrong and other members of the US Postal Service team took blood-boosting drugs

The revelations come amid increased
scrutiny regarding drugs use in cycling, after the US Anti-Doping Agency
(USADA) last week announced its intention of stripping Armstrong of his
seven Tour de France titles following the Texan's announcement that he
would no longer contest long-standing doping charges.

Hamilton and Armstrong rode together for the US Postal team from 1998 to 2001, a period that delivered three of Armstrong's Tour wins.

Hamilton, who has twice been banned for doping offences, has previously spoken out against both Armstrong and the team in interviews with federal criminal investigators.

One of the team's techniques, Hamilton claims, was the use of blood doping, whereby an amount of a rider's blood was extracted, stored and then re-injected to boost the red blood cell count.

'With the other stuff, you swallow a pill or put on a patch or get a tiny injection,' Hamilton wrote.

'But here you're watching a big clear plastic bag slowly fill up with your warm dark red blood.

Claim: Hamilton, who has been banned twice for doping offences, has accused Armstrong in his book

Claim: Hamilton, who has been banned twice for doping offences, has accused Armstrong in his book

'You never forget it.'

Hamilton also alleged that at the 1999 Tour Armstrong's gardener, named only as Phillipe, followed the riders on a motorbike carrying a flask containing vials of the blood-boosting drug EPO.

'When we needed Edgar [Allan Poe, a slang term for EPO], Phillipe would zip through the Tour's traffic and make a drop-off,' he claimed.

Hamilton also questioned the quality of the doping tests the riders were subjected to.

Armstrong has never failed a doping test, a fact frequently held up by his supporters as proof of his innocence, but Hamilton wrote: 'They weren't drug tests. They were more like discipline tests, IQ tests.

'If you were careful and paid attention, you could dope and be 99 per cent certain that you would not get caught.

'They've got their doctors, and we've got ours, and ours are better. Better paid, for sure.'

Armstrong's representatives were not immediately available for comment about the book's claims.

Armstrong has always denied using drugs throughout his career.

I've done nothing wrong: Armstrong has denied ever using performance enhancing drugs in his career

I've done nothing wrong: Armstrong has denied ever using performance enhancing drugs in his career

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The Open 2012: Ian Poulter vents his frustration on Twitter

I want to puke! Poulter vents his frustration at Open form on Twitter

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UPDATED:

17:00 GMT, 21 July 2012

Ryder Cup star Ian Poulter vented his Open frustration by Tweeting an expletive and declaring himself sick after a third-round 73 dropped him back to three-over at Royal Lytham.

The Englishman stomped off the 18th green declining requests for interviews but within the hour he had taken to the social network to offer his thoughts.

'So p***** off right now it's crazy, 2 fairway bunkers in 54 holes & I'm over par,' the world No 28 wrote.

Not a happy man: Ian Poulter vented his frustration on Twitter

Not a happy man: Ian Poulter vented his frustration on Twitter

'It makes me want to puke. Padded cell required please.'

The 36-year-old began the day level par – 10 shots off the lead – and went to the turn in one under after a birdie at the ninth.

Twitter: Poulter

He gave that back at the next but immediately birdied the 11th only to fall apart with two double-bogey sixes at the 15th and 17th holes.

Yann M"Vila arrested to throw Arsenal move into doubt

Arsenal’s 17m move for M'Vila in doubt after France midfielder is arrested

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UPDATED:

09:49 GMT, 2 May 2012

France international midfielder and Arsenal transfer target Yann M’Vila has been arrested for allegedly punching a 17-year-old.

The Rennes star, 21, was released on Tuesday after spending the night in a police cell following an incident that allegedly took place at his home in Vern-sur-Seiche.

Arrested: M'Vila spent the night in a cell in his home town

Arrested: M'Vila spent the night in a cell in his home town

M’Vila has become one of the most sought-after players in Europe after establishing himself as a regular in Laurent Blanc’s national side.

He is valued at around 17million by his club and is widely expected to move in the summer, with Arsenal his most likely destination.

M’Vila was in the headlines in March when two prostitutes were jailed by a Montpellier court for robbing the player and a friend of his, while back in January 2010 a restaurant owner was allegedly hit by M’Vila following a road incident.

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Rory McIlroy doubtful for Dubai World Championship

McIlroy doubtful for Dubai showdown as dad-to-be Rose puts family first

Rory McIlroy goes into his European Tour showdown with Luke Donald this week waiting for the results of blood tests.

The 22-year-old US Open champion kept the “Race to Dubai” money list battle alive by winning the Hong Kong Open on Sunday, but has been struggling with his health for some time.

Struggling: Rory McIlroy has been laid low by virus

Struggling: Rory McIlroy has been laid low by virus

McIlroy went to see a doctor on arrival in the United Arab Emirates for the Dubai World Championship. It starts on Thursday and he needs to win, and for Donald to finish outside the top nine, to be crowned No 1 for the season.

“I won”t get the results back until later on this week,” said the Northern Irishman. “I picked up a virus and my white blood cell count was very low, so the tests were to see if it”s back up again.”

It is hardly surprising. McIlroy has been virtually non-stop since late September and that has included three trips to the Far East and one to Bermuda.

“I”m not energy-wise where I want to be, but I took a day off yesterday and took it easy,” he added.

“I”m going to play the pro-am today and practise and I”ll probably take another day off tomorrow – maybe hit a few balls.

“I”ll really try and conserve my energy and focus it all into the four tournament days.

“I”m not 100%, but I”m still able to go out and play 18 holes and try and give it my all.

Showdown: Luke Donald

Showdown: Luke Donald

“I”ve still got a slim chance of trying to win the “Race to Dubai”. It”s going to be a tough ask, but I”ll give my best and it would be great to finish the year on a high.”

Not that he is quite finished yet. McIlroy is also entered for next week”s Thailand Championship, although his manager Conor Ridge says his participation there depends on his health.

Asked if he might have pulled out this week if it had not been such a big event – not just for the money list, but also the world rankings and Ryder Cup qualifying points – he said: “I”m not sure.

“I don”t like pulling out of tournaments. I think you saw that at the PGA this year.”

That was where he damaged his arm hitting against a tree root on the third hole, yet he managed all four rounds.

Justin Rose has pulled out of the event to be with his wife Kate in Florida as they await their second child.

“Flying home to Orlando for an amazing off season,” said Rose on his Twitter side.

“Our 2nd baby is on its way very soon. Sorry I couldn”t play in Dubai. Family first.”

Family guy: Justin Rose

Family guy: Justin Rose

The former European number one last week missed the halfway cut in the Hong Kong Open, an event he entered to guarantee he played the required 13 events on the circuit this season.

Failing to do that would have left him open to the possibility of becoming ineligible for next year”s Ryder Cup.

He is currently lying seventh in the points race after winning one of the FedEx Cup play-off events in America in September, but could well fall down the standings by missing this week”s big-money event.

Only the top 60 on the European money list qualify, but only 58 are playing because, in addition to Rose, US-based Fredrik Jacobson is not in the field.

They will not be replaced by 61st-placed Stephen Gallacher, who lost out to Swede Christian Nilsson by less than 4,000 despite earning over 427,000, or 62nd-placed Steve Webster.

The main spotlight, of course, is on the battle between the world”s top two Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy for the European No 1 crown.

McIlroy, the winner in Hong Kong, has to triumph again on Sunday, but even then Donald would still top the money lists on both sides of the Atlantic in the same season – a feat never before achieved – if he finished ninth or better.