Tag Archives: exhibition

Chelsea move to Earls Court from Stamford Bridge unlikely after setback

Stay away, Chelsea! Roman stadium blow as Blues told they have 'no place' at Earls Court

By
David Kent

PUBLISHED:

17:20 GMT, 23 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:45 GMT, 23 January 2013

Chelsea have been dealt a fatal blow in their pursuit of moving to a bigger stadium away from Stamford Bridge.

Owner Roman Abramovich is desperate to relocate the west London club to Earls Court.

But the Russian billionaire will have to reconsider his lofty plans following a damning joint statement released by Hammersmith and Fulham Council, and developer EC Properties on Wednesday.

Moving on: Stamford Bridge has been Chelsea's home since 1905

Moving on: Stamford Bridge has been Chelsea's home since 1905

Bird's eye view: Roman Abramovich had set his sights on the Earls Court Exhibition Centre

Bird's eye view: Roman Abramovich had set his sights on the Earls Court Exhibition Centre

'Neither of the two landowners believes
that the inclusion of a football stadium in the scheme would offer the
regeneration benefits of the existing master plan,' the press release read.

'It is the firm intention of the two
landowners to proceed with this landmark regeneration, creating 9,500
permanent new jobs and around 36,000 temporary construction jobs.

Plans for the redevelopment of the Earls
Court site have been unveiled after an agreement paving the way for
1billion worth of community benefits in North Fulham and Earls Court
was signed – with Chelsea not part of that.

Blow: Roman Abramovich will be forced to reconsider his plans after another setback

Blow: Roman Abramovich will be forced to reconsider his plans after another setback

Hammersmith and Fulham Council Leader Nicholas Botterill added: 'There really is no place for
Chelsea Football Club within the Earls Court redevelopment.

'It remains
the council's firm belief that the future of Chelsea FC is best served
at their historic home of Stamford Bridge.'

Despite the obvious setback, Sportsmail understands Chelsea will continue to monitor the site as an option with the Stamford Bridge club aware that similar language has been used before.

Nevertheless today's statement will still come as a huge blow to Abramovich who continues to look for a new home for his side who have been based at Stamford Bridge since 1905.

Chelsea's hopes of moving to Battersea Power Station were extinguished last year after a Malaysian consortium completed a 400million purchase of the London landmark.

The Blues lodged a bid to move to the iconic 39-acre site on the south bank of the River Thames.

The west Londoners released plans in May that detailed how they hoped to turn the derelict site in to a 60,000-seater stadium incorporating the four famous chimneys.

More follows…

Novak Djokovic suffers unusual injury scare at Hopman Cup ahead of Australian Open

VIDEO: Djokovic suffers unusual injury scare ahead of Australian Open as he was hit by a railing while signing autographs at Hopman Cup

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UPDATED:

15:10 GMT, 31 December 2012

Novak Djokovic endured a strange injury scare ahead of his Australian Open defence as a railing fell on his leg while he was signing autographs in Perth.

The Serbian was representing his country at the Hopman Cup and he limped away from court after his 6-3 6-4 win over Andreas Seppi.

But the 25-year-old recovered in time to play the mixed-doubles encounter with Ana Ivanovic.

Djokovic said: 'It was a bit of a shock and I'm glad that the children involved are OK. I am fine.'

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Injured: A barrier gave way while Djokovic was signing autographs

Injured: A barrier gave way while Djokovic was signing autographs

Injured: A barrier gave way while Djokovic was signing autographs

Unusual: The world number one hobbled off court in Perth

Hurt: The world number one hobbled off court in Perth

The Serbian was representing his country at the Hopman Cup and he limped away from court after his 6-3 6-4 win over Andreas Seppi.

It was a hectic day for the world number one as he arrived late in Australia after winning an exhibition event in Abu Dhabi.

'I arrived quite late last night and didn't get a lot of hours of sleep and I felt like I was dream-walking,' he said after beating Seppi.

'I broke the ice after the first set and felt a little bit better.'

Despite losing the mixed-doubles, Serbia beat Italy 2-1 as Ivanovic beat Francesca Schiavone 6-0 6-4 in the women's singles match.

Warm-up: Djokovic was representing his country at the Hopman Cup as part of his Australian Open preparations

Warm-up: Djokovic was representing his country at the Hopman Cup as part of his Australian Open preparations

Recovery: Djokovic came back to play the doubles match with Ana Ivanovic

Recovery: Djokovic came back to play the doubles match with Ana Ivanovic

Victory: Serbia beat Italy 2-1 in Perth despite losing the mixed-doubles match

Victory: Serbia beat Italy 2-1 in Perth despite losing the mixed-doubles match

VIDEO Watch Djokovic being hit by collapsing barrier

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Novak Djokovic issues warning to Australian Open rivals after Abu Dhabi win

I'm playing amazing! Djokovic issues ominous warning to Australian Open rivals after Abu Dhabi victory

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UPDATED:

17:20 GMT, 29 December 2012

Novak Djokovic warned his Australian Open rivals that he is in ‘amazing’ form ahead of his quest for a third successive title in Melbourne.

The Serb beat Nicolas Almagro in three sets in the final of the Abu Dhabi exhibition tournament after crushing tough Spaniard David Ferrer 6-0 6-3 in the semis.

And Djokovic, who has beaten Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray in the last two finals in Australia, wants to be the first man to claim three titles in a row Down Under.

Champion: Djokovic beat Almagro in three sets in the final in Abu Dhabi

Champion: Djokovic beat Almagro in three sets in the final in Abu Dhabi

Hat-trick: The Serb is looking for a third-straight Australian Open title

Hat-trick: The Serb is looking for a third-straight Australian Open title

‘I will be very motivated to hear that nobody has done this so I will try to make history there,' he said.

'I will be very flattered to be the first person to do that.

'The Australian Open is my most successful grand slam and hopefully I can get a shot at the title next year.'

Dominant: Djokovic crushed Ferrer 6-3 6-0 in the semis

Dominant: Djokovic crushed Ferrer 6-3 6-0 in the semis

Warning: The Serb thinks he is in 'amazing' form

Warning: The Serb thinks he is in 'amazing' form

Speaking after his dominant win against Ferrer, Djokovic said it was a 'perfect performance'.

'Last year I played an amazing few matches and this year I am playing amazing as well.

'It felt great, after a few weeks of preparation and hard work, more focusing on fitness and just gradually increasing the hours on the tennis court.

'It was a perfect performance against one of the best players in the world, especially in 2012 where he had his best year.

'It is a great confidence boost for me. It's something I will look at as a positive indication of my form in this tournament.'

Rafael Nadal out of Abu Dhabi exhibition tournament with virus

Virus delays Nadal's comeback as former world No 1 forced out of Abu Dhabi tournament

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UPDATED:

17:12 GMT, 25 December 2012

Rafael Nadal's long-awaited return from injury has been delayed further after he pulled out of this week's exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi with a virus.

The 11-time Grand Slam champion made the announcement on his Facebook page on Christmas Day saying he was 'very disappointed' to miss out after seven months on the sidelines with a left knee problem.

Nadal has not played since suffering his shock second-round exit at Wimbledon to unheralded Czech Lukas Rosol.

Blow: Rafael Nadal's comeback has been delayed due to a virus

Blow: Rafael Nadal's comeback has been delayed due to a virus

Despite the setback Nadal, 26, claimed he had recovered from his knee problem and that doctors had advised his withdrawal after a stomach infection had caused his illness.

'Everything was ready and I am eager to return to competition but the doctors have forbidden me from competing in Abu Dhabi due to a stomach infection that has left me with a fever,' Nadal wrote.

'My recovery has gone well – my knees are better – and I was eager to return to competition. I'm sorry for my fans in the Emirates and throughout the world. I hope to be there the coming year.

'I am very disappointed that I will not be able to compete in Abu Dhabi this year.'

Nadal had made a slower-than-expected recovery from his knee problems in the summer to delay his return.

The 26-year-old attempted to ease any concerns that this latest blow represented a further setback, saying his rehabilitation remained on course ahead of the start of the Australian Open on January 14.

'My rehab has gone well, my knee feels good and I was looking forward to competing,' he said. 'Unfortunately doctors have informed me that my body needs to rest in order to fight this stomach virus.'

Roger Federer plays with Gabriel Batistuta and Boca Juniors

Federer's at it again: After swapping skills with Pele, tennis ace plays with lethal ex-Argentina striker Batistuta

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UPDATED:

01:18 GMT, 14 December 2012

Fresh from showing off his silky smooth skills with Brazilian legend Pele, Roger Federer was at it again, this time with lethal ex-Argentina striker Gabriel Batistuta.

The world tennis number two swapped skills, and shirts, with 'Batigol' in a game of football-tennis at the home of Boca Juniors, the Bombonera stadium.

Argentinian World number seven Juan Martin Del Potro was also inside the stadium, just hours before the pair played their second exhibition match in the city of Tigre.

Roger Federer, Juan Manuel Del Potro and Gabriel Batistuta (left to right) pose for photos inside Boca Juniors' Bombonera stadium

Roger Federer, Juan Manuel Del Potro and Gabriel Batistuta (left to right) pose for photos inside Boca Juniors' Bombonera stadium

Control: Roger Federer (right) and Juan Martin Del Potro (left) took part in a game of football-tennis just hours before their second exhibition match in the Argentinan city of Tigre

Control: Roger Federer (right) and Juan Martin Del Potro (left) took part in a game of football-tennis just hours before their second exhibition match in the Argentinan city of Tigre

Swiss tennis player Roger Federer heads a ball next to Argentinian Juan Martin Del Potro and Argentinian former footballer Gabriel Batistuta

And the Swiss superstar had kind words to say about his Argentinian rival, whom he holds a 13-4 record over, although Del Potro has won the last two.

'He is already among the best,' Federer told ESPN. 'Now he just has to train hard and stay on the same path.

'He was number four, he's now number seven, but he could be number one. Sometimes the difference is in the small details.'

Federer is on tour in South America, visiting Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.

His next tournament will be the Qatar ExxonMobil Open on 2nd January before the Australian Open begins on 16th January.

Swap: Federer was at it last week swapping shirts and gifts with Brazilian legend Pele (left)

Swap: Federer was at it last week swapping shirts and gifts with Brazilian legend Pele (left)

Adrien Broner offered Ricky Burns world title fight in London

Broner claims he offered Burns world title fight in London… with just TWO days notice

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UPDATED:

14:37 GMT, 13 December 2012

American world champion Adrien Broner has sensationally challenged Ricky Burns to a unification clash at just TWO days notice.

Burns was due to defend his WBO lightweight title against first Liam Walsh and then Jorge Ocampo but both pulled out, leaving the Scot without an opponent for Saturday's show at the Excel in London.

Ready to rumble: Adrien Broner claims he wanted to fight Ricky Burns with just two days notice

Ready to rumble: Adrien Broner claims he wanted to fight Ricky Burns with just two days notice

But Broner, who won the WBC belt against Antonio DeMarco last month and is regarded by many as boxing's successor to Floyd Mayweather Jnr, claims he would fly to London to take on the Scot.

'I found out, Burns doesn't have an opponent so I told them: “Fly me out today, I will make weight and I will beat that guy”,' he told ES News.

Broner previously replaced Burns as the WBO super-featherweight champion before failing to make weight for his defence against Vicente Escobedo in July.

The 23-year-old has long claimed that Burns vacated rather than face the rising star of American boxing but Burns insists he gave up the title as he could no longer comfortably make the weight.

He subsequently won the interim version of his current belt by beating Michael Katsidis at Wembley Arena last November before successful defences against Paulus Moses and British rival Kevin Mitchell.

Burns' original opponent for his third defence, unbeaten Walsh, was ruled out after being involved in a car crash before Filipino southpaw Ocampo withdrew at the last minute over contractual issues.

Burns turned down a 10-round exhibition bout and is instead expected to return to action on January 26 in Glasgow while Broner is being lined up to co-feature alongside Johnathan Banks' rematch with Seth Mitchell the following month.

Without an opponent: Ricky Burns was due to headline Saturday's bill in London

Without an opponent: Ricky Burns was due to headline Saturday's bill in London

But, assuming the American does not make the unlikely last-minute dash across the Atlantic, Burns could meet Broner as early as February, according to Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer.

'I am trying to do the Burns fight [with Broner,]' he told ESPN. '[I'll be] talking again with [Burns' promoter] Frank Warren. I am going to try and convince him to go directly to Broner for February 16.'

Burns' trainer Billy Nelson meanwhile believes Burns would relish the chance to unify the division.

'If a unification fight can be made up at lightweight, we’d snap their hands off,' he said last month. 'That’s the fight we want, trust me. Broner has an act but acts don’t hurt you. Words don’t hurt you.

'Punches hurt you, as Broner will discover if ever he gets inside a ring with Ricky. Whatever happens, I don’t think we’ll be watching anything Ricky will lose sleep over. Neither could cope with his range, speed or body shots.

'He’ll get the fright of his life when he sees the size of Ricky then has to cope with his industry, speed and strength.'

Rodger Federer meets Pele in Brazil

Gifts for the great: Pele and Federer swap shirts as they meet in Brazil

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UPDATED:

00:22 GMT, 11 December 2012

One legend met another as tennis star Roger Federer and former Brazil great Pele rubbed shoulders over the weekend.

Federer went to Pele's residence in Brazil to exchange gifts with one of the finest players in football history.

Pele was given a signed tennis shirt with a personal message from Federer, while in return he offered a signed 1960s-era blue Brazil shirt.

Exchange: Pele and Roger Federer swap gifts and then engage in a warm embrace (below)

Exchange: Pele and Roger Federer swap gifts and then engage in a warm embrace (below)

Hugs: Pele and Federer

Federer in a Brazil shirt

Football or tennis Federer with an over-sized tennis ball

It's gone to his head! Federer kicks an over-size tennis ball (right) at the Gillette Federer tennis exhibition

'I love playing tennis and today one of the greats of the game dropped by to say hello,' Pele wrote on his Twitter page.

'Roger Federer, you are a champion on the court and in life.'

Federer said on Facebook: 'Today I had the great honour of meeting the legendary Pele.'

He is in South America to play in the Gillette Federer tennis exhibition tournament.

The Sao Paulo competition also
involves Maria Sharapova, Caroline Wozniacki, Serena Williams and
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, among others.

Just for fun: Federer and Tommy Haas of Germany share smiles

Just for fun: Federer and Tommy Haas of Germany share smiles

On the ball

Balls in hand: Federer

Ali Carter says Ronnie O"Sullivan will play at the World Championships

The Rocket will return: Carter tips O'Sullivan to make Crucible comeback

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UPDATED:

16:12 GMT, 3 December 2012

Ali Carter has tipped Ronnie O’Sullivan to make a Crucible comeback and defend his World Championship title.

At the beginning of November O’Sullivan announced he would not play again this season, having made only one low-profile outing since defeating Carter to land snooker’s most highly-prized trophy last May.

The explanation was that O’Sullivan had personal reasons for skipping the current campaign, and the Chigwell cueman had said after his victory in Sheffield that playing week-in and week-out on the tour was taking a heavy toll on his life.

Right on cue: Ronnie O'Sullivan has been tipped by Ali Carter to defend his World Title

Right on cue: Ronnie O'Sullivan has been tipped by Ali Carter to defend his World Title

O’Sullivan did not sign up for the ongoing williamhill.com UK Championship, or next month’s Masters at Alexandra Palace in London, but he is expected to have until late February – a deadline has yet to be set – to decide whether to compete at the season-ending World Championship.

Such a return as mooted by Carter would be audacious, as O’Sullivan would be lacking match practice when compared to any other entrant.

But after speaking with the four-time world champion at a recent exhibition match in Poland, Carter can see O’Sullivan, who turns 37 on Wednesday, cutting short his break from tournament snooker.

'Am I missing him No, not at all,' said Carter.

Taking time out: O'Sullivan said he wanted time away from the sport

Taking time out: O'Sullivan said he wanted time away from the sport

But Carter added: 'Obviously I think he’ll be back for the World Championship. I don’t care what everyone says now. There’s no way Ronnie O’Sullivan could miss that event in my opinion.

'We were in Poland and it’s personal reasons (that) he did talk to me about, that I’m not going to discuss.

'I think he’ll be back for the World (Championship), but I don’t think he knows until he wakes up in the morning what he’s going to do, and I don’t think he knows then.'

Without the man regularly branded the most natural player ever to take up the game, snooker has lost its main box-office attraction.

Crowds in York for the UK Championship appear to have suffered for the absence of O’Sullivan and the now-retired Stephen Hendry, with the balcony level at the Barbican Centre closed to spectators who were allowed access last year.

Prediction: Carter says he thinks O'Sullivan will play in the new year

Prediction: Carter says he thinks O'Sullivan will play in the new year

Any tournament without O’Sullivan gives the rest a better chance of coming away with the trophy.

Carter, who has twice been beaten in Crucible finals by his fellow Essex player, knows that certainly applies this week.

'Of course it opens it up,” said the 33-year-old.

'Ronnie’s beatable when his head’s not on but it was clear for everyone to see that this year at the World Championship his head was completely on.

'He hasn’t got four world titles, five UKs and four Masters – or whatever it is – for no reason.'

O’Sullivan actually has four of each, but Carter’s point stands.

Former world champion Graeme Dott would rather O’Sullivan was in York, but the Scot is losing no sleep over his decision to stay away, believing strength in depth means the sport can get by without him.

Dott said: “Ronnie is obviously the best player and everyone wants to see him, the players included would rather have Ronnie in the tournament than not in it.

'If Ronnie wasn’t here seven years ago you’d miss him a hell of a lot more than we’re going to miss him just now.'

Andy Murray and Andy Roddick use sofas in exhibition match

Lying down on the job: Sofa, so good for Roddick after exhibition win over Murray

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UPDATED:

10:27 GMT, 2 December 2012

Andy Murray and Andy Roddick took the idea of a 'time out' to a different level in Miami last night as they took part in an exhibition match.

Instead of the usual chairs for between-game breaks, the two players took a rest on sofas, with Roddick taking particular advantage.

The recently-retired American came through 6-2, 6-3 and will take on Nicolas Almagro in the final today.

Chilling out: Andy Murray takes a rest during his exhibition match with Andy Roddick (below)

Chilling out: Andy Murray takes a rest during his exhibition match with Andy Roddick (below)

Andy Roddick

'If we had gone three sets I would've had a full body cramp and it would've been awkward for all of you,' said Roddick. 'There's no comeback (to tennis for me). Andy was nice to me tonight.'

Murray, the Olympic gold medalist and U.S. Open champion, wasn't surprised that Roddick won.

All smiles: Murray enjoyed his experience in Miami despite his defeat to Roddick

All smiles: Murray enjoyed his experience in Miami despite his defeat to Roddick

All smiles: Murray enjoyed his experience in Miami despite his defeat to Roddick

'Andy hasn't hit that many balls the last few months,' Murray said. 'Maybe his timing was a little bit off, but he still hits the ball very well. It was only a few months ago he was making a decent run at the U.S. Open.'

Murray will remain in Florida for his annual boot camp before the Australian Open in January.

Season over: Murray will remain in Florida to prepare for the Australian Open next month

Season over: Murray will remain in Florida to prepare for the Australian Open next month

Season over: Murray will remain in Florida to prepare for the Australian Open next month

Rory McIlroy Nike deal cleared to go after Titleist refuse to offer new contract

Rory's 156m deal with Nike cleared to go as Titleist admit they won't renew contract

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UPDATED:

22:00 GMT, 30 October 2012

Rory McIlroy's long-mooted switch to Nike moved a step closer when his current club manufacturer Titleist said they would not be renewing his contract.

All the signs are that the 23-year-old world No 1 will now become the new poster boy for a Nike brand keen to improve their image following the Lance Armstrong scandal. McIlroy is expected to sign a 10-year contract that could earn him 156million.

Not everyone is convinced he has made the right move, ditching the only clubs he has used since he was a teenager.

Posterboys: Rory McIlroy (right) looks set to join Tiger Woods (left) at Nike

Posterboys: Rory McIlroy (right) looks set to join Tiger Woods (left) at Nike

‘I’d call it dangerous,’ said six-time major champion Sir Nick Faldo. ‘Every manufacturer will tell you we can copy your clubs and tweak the golf ball so it fits you. But there is a feel and sound as well, and there’s confidence.

‘It is easy to go off and do this and it messes you up because it just doesn’t feel quite the same.’

Meanwhile, the prestigious HSBC Championship starts on Thursday in Shenzhen, China, without McIlory and world No 2 Tiger Woods, who played an 18-hole exhibition match just 750 miles away on Monday.

Seven of the world’s top 10 will battle for a 4.3m prize fund, but Giles Morgan, HSBC’s world head of sponsorship, warned that without all the top players available, golf sponsorship will suffer.