Tag Archives: pool

Sergio Aguero plays pool in Manchester pub – pictures

Aguero sinks the reds (again): Right on cue, City's 38m star joins locals for game of pool in Manchester boozer

By
John Drayton

PUBLISHED:

10:36 GMT, 11 April 2013

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UPDATED:

11:17 GMT, 11 April 2013

We've all been there – sipping a pint in your local pub waiting for that bloke to finish playing pool so you can get a game.

But what would you do if the guy sending you potty was none other than Sergio Aguero

Manchester City's 38million striker isn't the kind of person you'd expect to bump into as you enjoy a post-work drink down your boozer.

Yet, at just before 6pm yesterday, that's exactly what happened in the Woodley Arms in Stockport.

Pool party: Sergio Aguero lines up a shot at the Woodley Arms in Stockport

Pool party: Sergio Aguero lines up a shot at the Woodley Arms in Stockport

Eye on the balls: Aguero focuses on the game against his opponent

Eye on the balls: Aguero focuses on the game against his opponent

Vision: Aguero takes aim inside the boozer

Vision: Aguero takes aim inside the boozer

Vision: Aguero takes aim inside the boozer as part of an advert being filmed for Puma

Rumours had been circulating that the Argentina ace was going to pop in and around 100 locals got to see him up close.

City boss Roberto Mancini doesn't need to worry about Aguero's post-training habits, however. His visit was part of an advert being filmed by his sponsors Puma.

The player has already spent time being filmed on an all-weather pitch at a nearby sports centre before heading for his game of pool.

VIDEO No chance of a quiet game of pool in this Stockport pub…

Fans descend on Stockport pub to see as Sergio Aguero play pool…

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Famous face: Aguero looked like he enjoyed his visit to the pub

Famous face: Aguero looked like he enjoyed his visit to the pub

Technique: Aguero at the table

Technique: Aguero at the table

Aguero – who scored the winner in Monday's Manchester derby at Old Trafford – was brilliant with the City fans, signing autographs and posing for pictures before driving away in his Aston Martin Vanquish.

Jamie Taylor, manager of the Woodley Arms (and a confesses United fan), was delighted with his pub being used for the event.

He told the Manchester Evening News: 'You couldn’t say No, could you He’s a great player and I was as giddy as anyone when he came through the door.

'A lot of our regulars are City fans
so it’s been a great afternoon for them and something I’m sure we’ll be
having a bit of banter about for a long time.

'He
was pretty handy pool player as well. We’ve got a pool league down here
and if he fancies a regular game he’s welcome any time.'

Local Bob Marston, 70, added: 'Word was spreading like wildfire and I got the call and came straight down.

'I'm
off down to Wembley on Sunday – I was impressed with his pool skills
and hopefully he’ll be in similar form against Chelsea.'

Winner: Aguero fires home against Manchester United - leaving Phil Jones shocked

Winner: Aguero fires home against Manchester United – leaving Phil Jones shocked

Flying high: Aguero celebrates his winner against United at Old Trafford

Flying high: Aguero celebrates his winner against United at Old Trafford

Andy Robinson set to be named as Bristol"s Director of Rugby after quitting Scotland

Former Scotland boss Robinson tasked with securing promotion for Bristol

By
Chris Foy

PUBLISHED:

14:20 GMT, 15 February 2013

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UPDATED:

19:48 GMT, 15 February 2013

Former England and Scotland coach Andy Robinson will be unveiled as Bristol's new director of rugby on Monday.

The 48-year-old resigned from his Scotland post late last year after they slumped to defeat against Tonga at the end of an autumn campaign which also featured losses to New Zealand and South Africa.

The long-time Bath stalwart as player and coach has retained strong West Country links and will be placed in charge of Bristol’s quest to gain promotion from the Championship back into the Aviva Premiership.

Andy Robinson

Andy Robinson being inducted into the Premiership Rugby Hall of Fame during at the Hurlingham Club on February 7, 2013

Andy Robinson has had mixed results as an international rugby boss but was inducted into the Premiership Rugby Hall of Fame earlier this month (right)

Robinson was forwards coach under Sir
Clive Woodward when England won the World Cup and he subsequently took
on the head coach role from 2004-2006, before resigning following a
dismal series of results.

He resurfaced at Edinburgh and made a sufficiently positive impression to be given the Scotland job in 2009. He led them at the World Cup two years later, but they suffered a pool stage exit for the first time.

Robinson also won eight England caps as a player.

Life after Andy: Scotland have lost one and won one in this year's Six Nations

Life after Andy: Scotland have lost one and won one in this year's Six Nations

Bristol are battling to secure a place
in the Championship play-offs, although Newcastle remain firm favourites
to secure the one available promotion spot.

Head coach Liam Middleton is set to remain in his role after Robinson's arrival.

Real Sociedad wear players names instead of shirt sponsor

Real Sociedad players keep fans close to their hearts… by wearing their names instead of a shirt sponsor

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UPDATED:

00:22 GMT, 21 December 2012

Real Sociedad have delighted some of their supporters by wearing their names on their shirts in place of a sponsor.

Each player wore the name of a randomly selected club member out of a pool of 25,000 as they took to the field against Sevilla.

They pleased the supporters further still with a 2-1 home win in the La Liga clash at the Anoeta stadium, with former Arsenal striker Carlos Vela opening the scoring.

Thanks for the support: Real Sociedad players wear fans' names on their shirts

Thanks for the support: Real Sociedad players wear fans' names on their shirts

Club president Jokin Aperribay said: 'The fans are the soul, the nourishment and the reason for Real Sociedad. For this reason, we’re uniting the names of our members with the shirts.'

Aperribay added: 'It’s for the history, because the fans are the of the club and this is a tribute to those that have supported us for many years.

'When we went down to the Segunda, we
overcame that difficulty because we retained 20,000 members. For the
present, because the fans show enthusiasm, which the team receives and
returns to them.

'We want to achieve bigger
objectives, but we can’t do that without the fans. For the future,
because that will be determined by the fans.

'It is very important that fans feel
they are necessary for the club to function. For that reason, we decided
to unite two of the most important things at Real Sociedad – The fans
and the shirt.'

Helping hand Sociedad ended up beating Sevilla 2-1

Helping hand Sociedad ended up beating Sevilla 2-1

Carlos Vela (left) gets stuck in

Alberto de la Bella (left) duels for the ball

Midfielder Xabi Prieto, who has been a
member at the club since 1992, said: 'We’re fortunate that we can play
every week. Against Sevilla, we’ll have our members playing with us.'

Sociedad have named the fan-appreciation initiative 'we carry you on our shirts'.

Previously they thanked their fans for their support by naming 22 of them in a television advert.

Last
season in La Liga nearly half of sides did not have a shirt sponsor
leading to creativite options coming to the fore as they looked to make
money.

Valencia used their
Twitter address instead, while Sevilla charged supporters around 25 to have
their faces used to create the numbers on the back of shirts.

Getting shirty: Sevilla asked fans to pay to have their faces put onto the players' strips

Getting shirty: Sevilla asked fans to pay to have their faces put onto the players' strips

Harlequins 53 Zebre 5: Heineken Cup Pool Three rout

Harlequins 53 Zebre 5: Robshaw keeps his promise as Italians are brushed aside

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UPDATED:

21:07 GMT, 15 December 2012

Captain Chris Robshaw promised that Harlequins would make a name for themselves in Europe after they won the Premiership and Saturday's thumping victory means they can enjoy Christmas on the brink of ensuring a home Heineken Cup quarter-final.

No team will fancy a trip to the Stoop to take on a Quins side brimming with confidence, although few will be as poor as Italian minnows Zebre, formed only last May after the Aironi team hit financial problems and had their licence revoked by the Italian Rugby Federation.

Zebra cross: Danny Care of Quins celebrates as he runs in a try

Zebra cross: Danny Care of Quins celebrates as he runs in a try

Two more victories in Pool Three would give director of rugby Conor O'Shea's Quins top seeding in the knockout stages.

'We want to be successful here and we all vowed to kick on after winning the Premiership last May,' said O'Shea.

'If you see how we've done so far
this season, we've won 13 out of 16 games, we're top of the Premiership,
we're top of our Heineken Cup pool unbeaten, we've won both LV Cup
games so far and we're in the A League final, so we are definitely doing
OK. But we don't just want to win this pool, we want a home
quarterfinal.'

Bearing in mind Quins have won all
four Pool Three games so far, already lead second-placed Biarritz by ten
points and have Connacht at home in four weeks before a final trip to
Biarritz, they are superbly placed.

On the run: Ugo Monye evades a tackle from Zebra's Giovanbattista Venditti (left)

On the run: Ugo Monye evades a tackle from Zebra's Giovanbattista Venditti (left)

To put Zebre's quality into
perspective, they came to south-west London on the back of ten straight
defeats in their first ten games in the RaboDirect Pro12 League.

They have gained only four losing
bonus points and three successive defeats in this Heineken Cup pool –
including last weekend's 57-15 home setback to Quins – indicate their
dire lack of class.

Saturday was no better, with Quins
running in seven tries – two in the first half from Tom Casson and a
penalty try, and five after the break from Ben Botica, Tom Guest, Sam
Smith, Danny Care and Karl Dickson.

Nick Evans scored 18 points with eight successful kicks out of nine attempts. Zebre managed one response in the first half.

Turning heads: Chris Robshaw is wrapped up by the the Zebre defence

Turning heads: Chris Robshaw is wrapped up by the the Zebre defence

To put Zebre's quality into
perspective, they came to south-west London on the back of ten straight
defeats in their first ten games in the RaboDirect Pro12 League.

They have gained only four losing
bonus points and three successive defeats in this Heineken Cup pool –
including last weekend's 57-15 home setback to Quins – indicate their
dire lack of class.

Saturday was no better, with Quins
running in seven tries – two in the first half from Tom Casson and a
penalty try, and five after the break from Ben Botica, Tom Guest, Sam
Smith, Danny Care and Karl Dickson.

Nick Evans scored 18 points with eight successful kicks out of nine attempts. Zebre managed one response in the first half.

That prompted O'Shea to question why
the visitors – who simply add weight to the Anglo-French TV row with the
ERC at the moment over involving more English and French teams and
fewer from the smaller nations in the tournament – are even in the
Heineken Cup.

Six appeal: Sam Smith runs in to score his side's sixth try

Six appeal: Sam Smith runs in to score his side's sixth try

That is before there is even a
discussion over the absurdity of Zebre, one of just two Italian clubs in
the competition, receiving three times as much money as Quins, who are
one of six English clubs taking part.

'We shared the same hotel as Zebre in
August in the south of France for pre-season and their players were
meeting up for the first time,' said O'Shea.

'It was difficult in this game
because we were so superior that it became a mental challenge. You're
damned if you do and damned if you don't. And it makes no sense for
Zebre to get three times as much money as we do for playing in this
competition.

Pass master: Tom Casson offloads the ball

Pass master: Tom Casson offloads the ball

'We won the Amlin Cup three times,
the last time, in 2011, serving as a launchpad for our recent successes,
so that competition should be good enough for a team like Zebre.

'They should have no divine right to
play in the Heineken Cup. It does Italian rugby no good – either for
their fans or commercially – to see Zebre stuffed like this.'

Few at the Stoop will disagree with
that sentiment although, as the happy home fans ventured into the night,
the talk was centred upon Harlequins adding European glory to domestic
silverware.

Zebre 14 Harlequins 57: Smith nabs a brace as pool leaders Quins secure bonus point win

Zebre 14 Harlequins 57: Smith nabs a brace as pool leaders secure bonus point win

PUBLISHED:

16:34 GMT, 8 December 2012

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UPDATED:

16:34 GMT, 8 December 2012

Harlequins remain on course for top spot in Heineken Cup pool three after a comprehensive victory over Zebre in Parma.

The Aviva Premiership pacesetters ran in eight tries to secure a winning bonus point.

Sam Smith scored a brace with Nick Easter, Matt Hopper, Rob Buchanan and Ben Botica also among the scorers for Connor O'Shea's high fliers, who also managed two scrum penalty tries.

The most Zebre could manage on a bitterly cold day was a first-half breakaway try by Leonardo Sarto and a late consolation for Alberto Chillon.

Two tries: Sam Smith helped Quins to an easy win

Two tries: Sam Smith helped Quins to an easy win

With Biarritz losing to Connacht last night, Quins' destiny now lies in their own hands and victory in next week's return against Zebre will effectively seal their passage through to the quarter-finals.

Harlequins were good value for their win and barely had to break sweat for some of their tries.

The first came for Smith on 26 minutes, a routine dash for the corner after the Zebre defence had been stretched on the back of a Maurie Fa'asavalu turnover.

Evans converted, adding to an earlier penalty, and already it looked as though the game was up for a desperately limited Zebre side, who failed to get out of their own half in the opening half hour.

Things went from bad to worse for the hapless Italians when serial offender Mauro Bergamasco was sent to the sin-bin for a ruck offence.

With that it looked as though the floodgates would open, and Smith helped himself to a second try after linking superbly with Tom Williams.

Again Evans converted to leave Quins 17-0 up and coasting.

Complacency cost Quins as they went in search of a third try before half-time, and it was Zebre who instead struck next, Sarto racing away after one too many passes cost Quins.

It was shortlived joy for Zebre, and Quins were back in business within three minutes of the restart as Easter bagged their third try after the visiting forwards wrestled the home pack into submission.

Danny Care, Matt Hopper and Mike Brown all went close to adding a fourth, but in the end it was the forwards that took the plaudits, forcing a penalty try after dominating the home scrum.

They would do so again later in the half as Zebre went into meltdown, and sandwiched in between was a fine individual try by Hopper, who showed great footwork to outmanoeuvre the home defence.

He was eclipsed shortly after, however, by substitute prop Buchanan, who scored with practically his first touch after another irresistible attack by rampant Quins.

A late try by Chillon proved scant consolation for a disillusioned Zebre, and it was left to another substitute, Botica, to wrap up the scoring for Quins.

Northampton 6 Ulster 25: Saints and Dylan Hartley face early exit

Northampton 6 Ulster 25: Future bleak for Saints and Hartley as early exit looms again

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UPDATED:

23:36 GMT, 7 December 2012

Northampton's hopes of avoiding a
second successive Heineken Cup pool-stage exit were all but extinguished as they were smashed aside by unstoppable Ulster.

Six days after England managed to end
the All Blacks’ 20-match unbeaten run, one of the Aviva Premiership’s
leading sides emphatically failed to end another double-digit streak.

Catch me if you can: Ulster wing Andrew Trimble scored a try in a brilliant performance at Franklins Gardens

Catch me if you can: Ulster wing Andrew Trimble scored a try in a brilliant performance at Franklins Gardens

Their Irish opponents came to Franklin’s Gardens on the back of a dozen consecutive victories this season, and having already beaten Glasgow away from home, this bonus-point triumph in a traditionally inhospitable arena leaves Ulster firmly on track to top Pool Four.

The runaway leaders of the RaboDirect Pro12 league gave a vivid display of the power and cohesion which has swept all before them. Up front, they had the likes of Iain Henderson and Chris Henry providing the strong-arm graft, while Ruan Pienaar and Paddy Jackson pulled the strings cleverly and Jared Payne ran amok from full back.

For Northampton, this was a damaging indignity, inflicted on their first-choice line-up. Visiting teams don’t tend to come to these parts and dominate so emphatically. In theory, Jim Mallinder’s chastened side go to Belfast for the reverse fixture next Saturday with the their qualification prospects still alive.

In reality, they are surely sunk, as it was at Ravenhill where their local rivals Leicester suffered a record defeat last season.

Just to add to the bleak outlook, Saints captain Dylan Hartley appeared to use his forearm in an altercation with Ulster hooker Rory Best which is bound to attract scrutiny from the citing officer. Northampton could do without losing him to a ban so soon after his return from injury.

Hartley dismissed suggestions of anything untoward, saying: ‘I don’t think it was an incident.’

Try time: Jared Payne of Ulster races clear to score in the heavy defeat of Northampton

Try time: Jared Payne of Ulster races clear to score in the heavy defeat of Northampton

But the Saints skipper was brutally
honest in assessing his team’s performance, adding: ‘They are unbeaten
but we made them look very good. It’s all about intensity — we can’t
just go out there and expect things to happen. We need to sort our form
out for next week but we are capable of going there and winning.’

In the 10th minute, the visitors gave
an illustration of their form and confidence. When Ben Foden sliced a
clearance kick, Ulster’s pack rumbled forward from the lineout. Their
dynamic maul was stopped just short of the home line but the reprieve
was fleeting. The ball was shipped left, Paddy Jackson sent a delicate
chip to the corner and Andrew Trimble nipped in to touch down.

Jackson missed the conversion and the kicking difficulties continued on
both sides, with Ryan Lamb landing only two of his five first-half
shots.

His Irish counterpart slotted one penalty of his own and six minutes
before the break, Ulster struck again. Pouncing on loose ball from a
Northampton lineout, they battered the ramparts and forced a breach.
After Henderson and Trimble were kept at bay on the left, good hands
took the ball to the far flank where Tommy Bowe stormed over.

Ulster turned around 13-6 ahead and within four minutes they were out of
sight. Lamb’s high kick was taken by Payne, who ran back strongly.
Darren Cave burst clear down the right and after Henry drove on,
Trimble’s superb flat pass released Payne again. The Kiwi’s dummy
wrong-footed Foden and he ran clear to touch down. Jackson’s conversion
went over to make it 20-6.

Following sustained Northampton pressure at the other end, Payne sent
Dan Tuohy over in the right corner to clinch the visitors’ bonus point
and complete a miserable night for the Saints.

Putting the boot in: Paddy Jackson kicks a penalty for Ulster as they put the English side to the sword

Putting the boot in: Paddy Jackson kicks a penalty for Ulster as they put the English side to the sword

Salt in the wounds: Dan Tuohy of Ulster dives over for a last minute try on Friday night

Salt in the wounds: Dan Tuohy of Ulster dives over for a last minute try on Friday night

Tom Wood will take no fear mentality from England to Northampton

Northampton's Wood still in mood for upset after England triumph

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UPDATED:

23:13 GMT, 6 December 2012

Tom Wood will resume club duties for Northampton on Friday night armed with the same ‘no fear’ mentality that he took into England’s epic victory over the All Blacks.

He and his fellow Saints aim to halt another double-digit winning run in their Heineken Cup pool four clash with Ulster at Franklin’s Gardens.

The flanker wears No 7 tonight after his man-of-the-match contribution to New Zealand’s downfall at Twickenham, when he wore No 6. But the positional change won’t mean a notable change of approach.

Spirit: Tom Wood (right) wants to take momentum and attitude from England's win over the All Blacks

Spirit: Tom Wood (right) wants to take momentum and attitude from England's win over the All Blacks

This will be a return to normality for the 26-year-old and lock Courtney Lawes after the high of being part of Saturday’s record win against the All Blacks.

But for the likes of Dylan Hartley and Ben Foden, this Anglo-Irish collision represents a first major opportunity to press their cases for a Test recall in the new year.

Yet the main focus for Wood and his fellow Saints is finding a way to stop an Ulster side who are runaway leaders of the Rabo-Direct Pro12 league and have won all their 12 games this season.

Then again, New Zealand were unbeaten in 20 international matches when they arrived in London, only to lose 38-21.

Wood said: ‘We’ll be on a high from that for a long time, it was a memorable day. But my feet are on the ground here at Northampton and I’ve been straight into training again.

Memorable: Wood certainly enjoyed beating New Zealand

Memorable: Wood certainly enjoyed beating New Zealand

'We’re not getting carried away, there are no egos or heroes, we’re looking forward to another big game for Saints.

‘Ulster are on a good run but we won’t worry too much about that. We know on our day, especially at Franklin’s Gardens, we can compete with anybody. There are a lot of good teams out there — Ulster are one of those.

‘But “fear” isn’t a word we use. We’re confident, especially at home in front of a full house. We can put on a positive performance and hopefully get the win.’

While Ulster will miss talismanic flanker Stephen Ferris, who has had surgery to repair ankle tendon damage and will be out of action for some time, Wood identified ex-Northampton No 8 Roger Wilson as a major threat.

Threat: Ruan Pienaar played England for South Africa and Wood will face him again

Threat: Ruan Pienaar played England for South Africa and Wood will face him again

However, the Irish province have threats all over, from Tommy Bowe and Andrew Trimble out wide to Ruan Pienaar pulling the strings at scrum-half and Rory Best at the heart of a big, abrasive pack.

Last year’s losing finalists will take some beating, but the Saints know they must win if they are to retain hopes of making it through to the knockout stages.

‘Without a win this weekend we will really be up against it’ said Wood. ‘After a disappointing campaign last year, it’s important we progress. We’re a club with high expectations and we want to do well in this competition. We need to win these big games at home.’

Ian Thorpe on his depression and suicidal thoughts

Depression and thoughts of suicide: Swimming legend Thorpe opens up about troubles

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UPDATED:

00:27 GMT, 14 November 2012

Australian five-time Olympic champion Ian Thorpe has revealed more about his fight against depression and thoughts of suicide which plagued his record-breaking career.

In a revealing interview on BBC Radio 5 Live the 30-year-old opened up about his troubles away from the pool that led him to consider taking his own life.

Amongst his revelations Thorpe said he had been treated for depression since he was a teenager and that it had led him to drink during the night in the lead-up to the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Revealing: Five-time Olympic swimming gold medallist Australia's Ian Thorpe explained more about his depression

Revealing: Five-time Olympic swimming gold medallist Australia's Ian Thorpe explained more about his depression

He also recounted that he had been too 'embarrassed' to tell even his family about the disease until this year.

While Thorpe believes he has now learned to control the problem enough to speak about it publicly – he has also released an autobiography entitled 'This Is Me' – he admitted there were 'still times that are really tough for me'.

'I realised that I had desperation early. I was having treatment for desperation when I was a teenager,' he said.

'Depression comes in bouts. You can feel okay most days and then just get hit with it. I experienced that through what was mostly a very successful swimming career.

Autobiography: This is me

Autobiography: This is me

For sale: Thorpe has had his autobiography published, pictured right

'I have struggled with it before but I feel like I am on the other side of it. There are still times that are really tough for me, but I feel as though I know enough about it.

'There's no way that I'll ever say that I'm cured because I know where I can go back to.

'It's the first time that I've been comfortable talking about it because I feel as though I have some sort of control.'

Asked whether he had ever contemplated suicide during a glittering career that also saw him claim 11 world titles, he added: 'Yeah, I wouldn't talk about it otherwise. It's not something that is a throw-away line.

Admission: Thorpe said he had thought about suicide

Admission: Thorpe said he had thought about suicide

'I actually think it's quite normal
for people to consider what it would be like to commit suicide. I think
it is a normal thing to think 'what would that feel like, would it be so
terrible'

'But usually that's all you think
about, that's it. When you go through what the process of what it would
be like and it becomes and obsession in your mind where all rational
thought is devoid in that situation you realise that this has gone
beyond just a thought.

'When you are trying to get it out of
your mind rationally and you can't. To consider it as being a rational
solution to the way you are feeling you realise this is a problem, that
this isn't just a fleeting thought or feeling.

'This is a very clear guideline that
you do need more help and that you're not in control of your life and
that the irrational thought has taken over.'

Popular: Thorpe is one of Australia's most recognised sports people

Popular: Thorpe is one of Australia's most recognised sports people

Disguise: Thorpe felt he could hide the truth from his colleagues

Disguise: Thorpe felt he could hide the truth from his colleagues

Thorpe revealed that a key moment in
his recovery was realising the extent of his problems in the lead up to
the 2004 Olympics, when he was drinking to avoid his demons.

He said: 'Leading up to Athens Olympics I was actually drinking in the night to try and avoid be depressed.

'Everyone knows that doesn't work.
It's a stupid thing to do and so you wake up the next morning, have a
hangover and you are more depressed than you were the day before.

'I was fortunate that I woke up to
this. I needed to seek more treatment. It's not that I got over it –
there is no way of getting over this – it was that I have a little bit
more control over my depression.'

Winner: Thorpe shows his gold medal after winning the 400m freestyle at the Olympic Games in Athens, Greece

Winner: Thorpe shows his gold medal after winning the 400m freestyle at the Olympic Games in Athens, Greece

Thorpe made an unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the London Olympics after coming out of a four-year retirement in late 2010.

Despite that failure he revealed he
still harboured ambitions to compete at Rio in four years and that he
would look to add to his Commonwealth titles in Glasgow in two years.

'I'm going to work in two-year cycles.
I'm looking to swim until the Commonwealth Games and then make a call
on whether to swim through until the Olympics after that,' he said.

'Starting out when I came back I knew the odds were stacked against me (to qualify for the Olympics).

'I thought it was 50-50. Realistically I thought it would take three years to get back.'

Scarlets 13 Leinster 20 – Heineken Cup match report

Scarlets 13 Leinster 20: Sexton stars with the boot as visitors rack up 17th straight win

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UPDATED:

16:42 GMT, 20 October 2012


Kicking king: Jonathan Sexton

Kicking king: Jonathan Sexton

Leinster went to the top of Heineken Cup Pool Five with a solid victory over the Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets.

Wing Isa Nacewa scored the visitors' only try with Jonathan Sexton supplying 15 points with the boot.

The Scarlets, who came away with a losing bonus point, scored a try through Gareth Maule and two penalties and a conversion from Rhys Priestland.

It gave Leinster their 17th successive victory in the tournament and coach Joe Schmidt's 17th win from 19 Heineken Cup games.

Irish centre Gordon D'Arcy returned as Leinster made two changes from the Exeter clash – Sean Cronin coming in at hooker and Fergus McFadden switching from centre to wing.

The Scarlets were without Wales centre Jonathan Davies (groin) but in-form wing Andy Fenby returned.

Maule replaced Davies to partner Scott Williams in midfield while full-back Liam Williams and flanker Aaron Shingler recovered from knocks sustained in the 49-16 defeat in Clermont Auvergne.

Leinster were given a great start with Sexton kicking a second minute penalty goal from the 22 after the Scarlets killed the ball at a ruck. It took Sexton past 350 points for the tournament.

The Welsh side were moving the ball intelligently behind but gave away another penalty as Sexton was able to kick the Irish side into the home 22.

Treviso 21 Toulouse 33

Toulouse narrowly avoided a Heineken Cup shock against Treviso this afternoon as the French side hit back to emerge 33-21 winners.

Treviso, backed by a passionate crowd at the Stadio Comunale di Monigo, led 18-9 at the break thanks to six penalties from fly-half Kristopher Burton.

Toulouse's Luke McAlister and Burton exchanged penalties after the break before both the visitors' Vincent Clerc and Treviso's Robert Barbieri were sin-binned.

Toulouse got themselves back in the match, though, courtesy of a penalty try and then moved ahead when Louis Picamoles burst through to go over.

Treviso were tiring and the visitors extended their lead when McAlister chipped the ball on for Clerc to touch down under the posts.

A fine second-half display from Toulouse was undermined slightly by the late dismissal of Christopher Tolofua after an incident with Fabio Semenzato but the Frenchman held on for their second successive win in Pool Two.

Leinster gained another penalty from which they built territory and scored a try through Nacewa, who collected a cross-kick from Sexton despite having George North bearing down on him.

Sexton missed with the conversion but then his opposite number Priestland was wayward with a long-range penalty on 16 minutes.

And Sexton was back on target as the defending champions took an 11-0 lead with a penalty after the Scarlets had been caught offside.

The Scarlets just could not cope with Leinster's streetwise approach at the breakdown and despite a later surge towards the line the Welsh side ended the first half pointless.

The Scarlets had the chance to get on the scoreboard within two minutes of the restart but Priestland was well short with a 45-metre effort.

But it proved to be a double whammy for the home side as a minute later Sexton put over an opportunist drop-goal from fully 40 metres.

The Scarlets finally broke their duck in the 48th minute with Priestland kicking a penalty after Leinster had failed to release in the tackle.

To the delight of the home fans, Sexton was off target with his own penalty three minutes later.

But the home fans were sent into raptures when a long pass from Priestland sent Gareth Maule on an outside break to the right corner leaving
O'Driscoll in his wake. Priestland converted the try as Scarlets closed the gap to four points.

That was extended to seven as Sexton eased some of the second half pressure that had been building on Leinster with his third penalty.

Sexton and Priestland swapped penalties as Leinster led 20-13 with five minutes remaining, but they ended the match down to 14 men with full-back Ian Madigan in the sin-bin for taking opposite number Williams in the air.

Sexton was wayward with a 79th-minute penalty, which would have brought the Scarlets a bonus point had the kick gone over the posts.

Agen 22 Bath 27: Louw"s last-gasp try seals Euro victory

Agen 22 Bath 27: Louw's last-gasp try seals Euro victory

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UPDATED:

23:16 GMT, 18 October 2012

Francois Louw's late try clinched a
dramatic late win for Bath in Pool B of the Amlin Challenge Cup against
Agen at the Stade Armandie.

Raphael Lagarde's late penalty looked
to have won it for the home side, but Louw crossed the line in the 79th
minute to put Bath back in front and Stephen Donald's conversion added
the gloss to the scoreline.

Gloss: Bath's Stephen Donald

Gloss: Bath's Stephen Donald

The visitors fell behind in the third minute when Benjamin Petre scored a try for Agen and the accurate Lagarde converted.

Donald and Lagarde exchanged penalties as Agen extended their lead to 10-3, but Michael Claassens scored a crucial try for Bath just before half-time to make it 10-8 to the French side at the interval.

Another Lagarde penalty extended Agen's lead at the start of the second period before Kyle Eastmond crossed for Bath's second try to level the score and Donald's conversion nudged Bath in front for the first time.

Lagarde restored Agen's advantage and, although Donald crossed for Bath in the 54th minute, he missed the conversion and it threatened to cost Bath dear when Lagarde pulled Agen back within a point.

Lagarde's 71st-minute penalty gave the hosts a 22-20 advantage which looked like being enough until Louw's late strike maintained Bath's 100 per cent start to the group.