Tag Archives: sensation

Guan Tianlang fires fine 69 in New Orleans

Guan steals the show again as teenage sensation makes cut in New Orleans while Rose is hot on heels of leader Glover

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

21:10 GMT, 26 April 2013

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UPDATED:

09:02 GMT, 27 April 2013

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Lucas Glover took his place at the top of the leaderboard at the midway point of the Zurich Classic as Chinese teenager Guan Tianlang once again caught the eye.

American Glover carded a 67 on the second day to add to his opening round of 65 to sit 12 under par overall, one stroke ahead of his countryman Boo Weekley.

But just as many eyes were focused a little further down the leaderboard, where 14-year-old Guan matched his achievement at the Masters by making the cut with nothing to spare, carding a 69 to finish three under for the day and for the tournament in a share of 57th.

In form: Guan Tianlang reacts as his birdie putt just misses on the ninth green

In form: Guan Tianlang reacts as his birdie putt just misses on the ninth green

'I think I played a very good round
today and I made a lot of birdies and a couple of good up and downs,' he
told www.pgatour.com. 'So I think I had a pretty good round.

'Making the cut is one of my goals.
I'm having fun these couple of days, and I hope to play my best and go a
little further into the weekend.'

Guan's round, which contained five
birdies and two bogeys and was watched by huge crowds from start to
finish, took some of the spotlight away from Glover at the top of the
leaderboard.

Teenage kicks: Guan Tianlang playing a tee shot in his second round

Teenage kicks: Guan Tianlang playing a tee shot in his second round

Glover sunk eight birdies against
three bogeys to take over at the top from overnight leader Ricky Barnes,
who undid much of his good work on day one by carding a four-over 76,
12 shots worse than his opening round.

Weekley got his second eagle in as
many days, at the par-four 10th, to sit a shot behind Glover and one
ahead of DA Points, while Morgan Hoffmann was fourth on nine under and
Ernie Els fifth on eight under.

Meeting the fans: Guan signs an autograph for a young fan after finishing the for the day

Meeting the fans: Guan signs an autograph for a young fan after finishing the for the day

Hoffmann, a relative youngster on
tour who, at 23, is till nearly 10 years older than Guan, said of the
achievement of the young Chinese: '[It] is unbelievable. You know, The
Masters and then here, it's awesome…

'I hope he understands what he's doing, because everybody out here is following him.'

Parental guidance: Guan wipes his face after taking water from his mother, Liu Hongyu

Parental guidance: Guan wipes his face after taking water from his mother, Liu Hongyu

England's Justin Rose and Brian Davis
led the European challenge in a group of six men on seven under, one
ahead of Belgium's Nicolas Colsaerts.

Defending champion Jason Dufner just made the cut, like Guan, at three under.

Manchester City to sign Leeds Sam Byram

Mancini lines up 8m bid for Leeds starlet Byram to be long-term Zabaleta successor

By
Charlie Skillen

PUBLISHED:

10:39 GMT, 10 March 2013

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UPDATED:

10:39 GMT, 10 March 2013

Manchester City are set to spend 8 million on poaching Leeds' teenage sensation Sam Byram.

Energetic right-back Byram has been one of the first names on Neil Warnock's team-sheet this season despite only making his debut in August.

Mancini is revamping his squad in the summer after finding his side off the pace in the Premier League and crashing out of the Champions League at the group stage.

Tough tackler: Sam Byram, in action for Leeds yesterday, is a target for Premier League champions City

Tough tackler: Sam Byram, in action for Leeds yesterday, is a target for Premier League champions City

Looking to the future: Mancini, pictured yesterday, sees Byram as the long-term successor to Pablo Zabaleta

Looking to the future: Mancini, pictured yesterday, sees Byram as the long-term successor to Pablo Zabaleta

The Italian boss was impressed with Byram’s display in City’s 4-1 FA Cup victory over Leeds last month, and has been keeping tabs on the teenager since.

Byram is being lined-up as the long-term successor to Pablo Zabaleta, while Mancini sees former England defender Micah Richards’ future as being in the centre of defence.

Essex-born Byram has signed two new deals at Elland Road this season alone, despite interest from City and other Premier League clubs.

Young gun: Right-back Byram, 19 (right), has been ever-present for Neil Warnock's (left) Leeds side this season

Young gun: Right-back Byram, 19 (right), has been ever-present for Neil Warnock's (left) Leeds side this season

West Bromwich Albion, Stoke and Wigan are also interested in the 19-year-old, but should Leeds sell their prize asset the Premier League champions would be favourites for his signature.

Byram’s form this season has seen him touted as one of the hottest prospects outside the top flight and he can also play as a right wing-back.

Raheem Sterling agrees new Liverpool contract

Sterling work! Raheem agrees new and improved five-year contract at Anfield

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UPDATED:

22:01 GMT, 19 December 2012

England whizzkid Raheem Sterling has ended speculation regarding his future by agreeing a new contract with Liverpool.

The 18-year-old winger has been in negotiations with the Anfield club for weeks over a new deal.

And Sportsmail understands both parties have shaken hands on a deal for Sterling to stay with the Merseysiders for the next five years.

Sign of the times: Sterling has agreed the terms of a new deal at Liverpool

Sign of the times: Sterling has agreed the terms of a new deal at Liverpool

Sterling currently earns in the region of 2,000-per-week, but his new deal will net him a substantial pay increase.

The Jamaican-born forward has just 18 months left to run on his existing contract and ensuring the teenage sensation penned an extension was a top priority for the club.

And after several meetings between managing director Ian Ayre and Sterling's representatives the England international can now concentrate on establishing himself as a key member of Brendan Rodgers' plans.

A number of the Premier League's elite were lining up to take advantage of the uncertainty regarding Sterling's future next month.

Both Manchester clubs, Arsenal and Chelsea have watched Sterling extensively with a view to swooping for the forward in January.

Sterling, who started his career at Queens Park Rangers, has made rapid progress for Liverpool since breaking into the first team under Kenny Dalglish last season.

And his impressive breakthrough culminated in his first England cap, as he started in the defeat against Sweden last month.

However, he is still eligible to play for his native Jamaica given he has not played for the Three Lions in a competitive fixture yet.

Exciting duture: Sterling is at the heart of Rodgers future plans

Exciting duture: Sterling is at the heart of Rodgers future plans

Raheem Sterling should sign for Manchester United, says Willie Morgan

Fergie should make shock move for Liverpool winger Sterling, claims United old boy Morgan

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UPDATED:

11:45 GMT, 12 December 2012

Top talent: Sterling

Top talent: Sterling

Former Manchester United winger Willie Morgan has told Sir Alex Ferguson to sign Liverpool youngster Raheem Sterling.

In a move that is sure to antagonise United’s arch rivals on Merseyside, Morgan believes the teenage sensation, who only turned 18 this month, would be a perfect replacement should Nani leave Old Trafford in January.

It would be a sensational transfer coup – no player has moved straight from Liverpool to United, or vice versa, since Phil Chisnall moved from Old Trafford to Anfield in 1964.

Morgan, a former Scotland international who made 236 appearances for United between 1968 and 1975, told the Manchester Evening News: ‘I think United should attempt to buy Liverpool’s left winger Raheem Sterling.

‘Sterling is the first winger I have seen in a long time who looks like a proper winger. He looks very good already and I think he is going to be great.

‘If you just let him go wide on the outside of the full-backs all the time I think he will be a great player. He’ll frighten people to death, so long as nobody coaches it out of him. He’s the brightest prospect out there and would suit United.’

Sterling won his first full England cap in last month’s friendly in Sweden and has been the surprise star of Brendan Rodgers’ team.

International: Sterling featured against Sweden for England last month

International: Sterling featured against Sweden for England last month

Rodgers has personally intervened to try to persuade Sterling to sign a new contract at Anfield, after talks between Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre and Sterling’s advisers stalled.

He has reminded him about the chance he has been afforded at Anfield, the role Liverpool have played in his development and the rewards that will be there for him if he makes the right moves.

But Morgan believes signing Sterling will continue United’s long tradition of explosive wide men.

Morgan added: ‘It’s traditional United and is a great weapon.

Pace to burn: Sterling has taken the Premier League by storm this season

Pace to burn: Sterling has taken the Premier League by storm this season

‘Having two wingers going at a defence is exactly what opponents struggle to cope with these days.

‘Full-backs generally are not good defenders any more. They are not equipped to deal with marking an out-and-out winger these days. They are half-baked forwards.

‘Any side with wingers who can play are a winning team as far as I am concerned. It was good to see United use them at City and they really did stretch them.

Elgin fan "mortified" over Ibrox dance display – VIDEO

Elgin fan red-faced despite rave reviews for dancing in front of Blue Noses at Ibrox

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UPDATED:

09:58 GMT, 6 December 2012

The happiest football fan in Britain admitted she was 'mortified' after becoming an internet sensation for her dancing display at Ibrox.

Jenny Bird, 36, was in Glasgow to watch Elgin face Rangers in the Scottish Cup and was captured on camera as she boogied in the away end during her side' 3-0 defeat.

Jenny appeared on YouTube and the clip generated 100,000 views in the first 24 hours.

Scroll down for video

Rave on: Jenny Bird became an internet hit after dancing at Ibrox

Rave on: Jenny Bird became an internet hit after dancing at Ibrox

But the volunteer sports coach from Nairn told the Daily Record: 'I'm mortified. I've given myself a red neck but, hey, life's too serious anyway.

'It wasn't planned. I just got carried away with the music. It was just a bit of fun with the moves I use when I'm warming up for boxing and exercise.

'It's something that's happened and now I've just got to get on with it. There was no harm in it and if it has made people happy, then that's good.'

Jenny, who supports Highland League side Nairn, travelled down on the bus to watch her friend Stuart Leslie play for Elgin.

And she denied going straight to the match after a big night out on the town.

She added: 'I hardly ever drink, except maybe one at my birthday and at Christmas.'

Jenny's dad is ex-Jedburgh player and racehorse owner Charlie Bird and her brother-in-law Derek Paterson played rugby for Scotland.

David Beckham teams up with Snoop Dogg for A Christmas Carol animated version

Becks teams up with rap star Snoop Dogg for animated version of A Christmas Carol

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UPDATED:

10:31 GMT, 28 November 2012

A digitised David Beckham has helped bring the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol into the 21st century to put the frighteners on hip-hop star pal Snoop Dogg.

Beckham plays the role of the ghost of Christmas present to help 'Ebenezer Snoop' recover his festive spirit in the star-studded adidas cartoon campaign.

Beckham, 37, tells the Gin and Juice rapper: 'I'm the ghost of holiday present. You sir have been a real ball. Things just aren't the same when you're not in the game.'

Scroll down for the video

Ghost of Christmas past: Beckham is sent to help 'Ebenezer Snoop' rediscover his festive spirit

Ghost of Christmas past: Beckham is sent to help 'Ebenezer Snoop' rediscover his festive spirit

Kicking back: David Beckham and Snoop Dogg

Also featuring in the dream sequence advert, sparked when Snoop Dogg takes a puff on a mysterious looking pipe, are US Open winner and Olympic gold medallist Andy Murray, British singing sensation Rita Ora and Chicago Bulls NBA basketball star Derrick Rose.

Snoop, 41, said of the ad campaign: 'You know you a boss when people wanna see you in animated form.'

On the move: Beckham is set to end his stay with LA Galaxy

On the move: Beckham is set to end his stay with LA Galaxy

Beckham recently announced his decision to quit MLS soccer side LA Galaxy to pursue one more challenge before he hangs up his boots.

The former Manchester United and Real Madrid sensation has been inundated with a host of offers including French side Paris Saint Germain and several Australian A-League outfits.

Head boy: Snoop Dogg stars in the adidas advert alongside David Beckham

Head boy: Snoop Dogg stars in the adidas advert alongside David Beckham

New QPR boss Harry Redknapp has also spoken of his admiration for Beckham's professionalism and would jump at the chance of having the former England captain on board to help in the West London club's battle to beat the drop.

But Beckham could have the chance to spend even more time with his mate Snoop after the international music star claimed he is tempted to buy a slice of Celtic after being knocked out by the passion of their fans in their recent stunning home win over Barcelona in the Champions League.

End of the American Dream: Beckham has been linked with big-money moves to PSG and Australia

End of the American Dream: Beckham has been linked with big-money moves to PSG and Australia

Beckham turning out for Snoop Dogg in the famous green and white hoops at Parkhead Many Celtic fans would think they have more chance of signing Tiny Tim but it would certainly be some Christmas present.

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Laura Robson looks back on stunning year

Teen sensation Robson heads to sunshine of Florida after stunning year on court

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UPDATED:

22:30 GMT, 15 November 2012

Everyone will have their own special memory of 2012 and for Laura Robson it will be sitting down at the changeover during her Olympics match against Maria Sharapova, a contest in which she ran the Russian desperately close.

'The roof had been closed and the crowd were all chanting my name, it was emotional and I got goosebumps,' recalled Robson, who will soon be swapping the English winter for Florida sunshine.

So enamoured was she by the Olympic experience that Rio is already on her mind, and aside from winning Wimbledon, getting a gold medal to add to her London 2012 silver has usurped any other ambition.

Highlight: Laura Robson ran Maria Sharapova close at the Olympics

Highlight: Laura Robson ran Maria Sharapova close at the Olympics

Right now no conversation with Robson, who was reclining at the National Tennis Centre in Roehampton, can be complete without reference to her rival Heather Watson, which is likely provide British tennis with its most intriguing and long running narrative in years.

At the same Olympics that so thrilled her, there was also a test to their friendship when Andy Murray was forced to choose between the two for his mixed doubles partner and plumped for Robson, a decision that reduced Watson to tears.

The eventual silver medal suggested he made the correct call, but Robson sympathises with her peer, and also conceded that it may not be the last time their relationship comes under strain due to the pressures of such an intensely competitive individual sport.

'It was totally understandable for Heather to want to play, I would have felt the same,' said Robson. 'She was the No 1 ranked singles and doubles player. I wasn't involved in the process of making the decision but I'm obviously very happy to have been picked.

'We are both competitive people but we want each other to do well. If we both push on next year then it will be really good. I'm not looking at her training thinking “I should be doing that”. So far it has been easy (staying friends). I don't know if it will be harder as we get older but I hope it stays the same.'

Silver lining: Robson partnered Andy Murray in the doubles in London

Silver lining: Robson partnered Andy Murray in the doubles in London

For the next month the pair will be on opposite sides of Florida doing their winter training with Watson, who has finished the year four places higher at 49, practising at the IMG Academy near Tampa while Robson will be at the Evert headquarters in Boca Raton. Murray will be further south in Miami.

Robson earned just shy of 189,000 in official prize money alone this season, and now she will be preparing with the full accompaniment of back-up befitting a top player, meaning an all-Croatian team of a hitting partner, physical trainer and her coach Zeljko Krajan.

The latter is a notoriously hard taskmaster, whose intensity at times proved too much for former charges such as Dinara Safina and Dominika Cibulkova. However, his arrival in August coincided with the best form of her life, although another factor was unquestionably the luxury of having her first sustained injury-free period on the tour.

'So far he has been pretty relaxed with me, I don't know if that's on purpose,' says Robson. 'Hopefully I haven't been stressing him out too much.'

Her regular encounters with the treatment table are why she is reluctant to set too many goals for a 2013 that is so rich in promise following her fourth round showing at the US Open when she upset both Kim Clijsters and Li Na.

Making progress: Laura Robson

Making progress: Laura Robson

'I haven't had any niggles since Wimbledon which is a record for me, so I haven't set goals yet. Getting seeded in the Grand Slams would be a good thing but if I say I'll get seeded by Roland Garros then I might get injured again.'

To prevent any recurrence and to further improve her key area of movement she is in the midst of a punishing training regime which sees her flopping into bed at nine o'clock every night, with the occasional treat of attending a film or fashion show.

Robson could still have been playing in the juniors this year, but instead is the highest ranked 18 year-old in the world, so far pulling off the trick of remaining perfectly well-adjusted while managing that.

During last month's Beijing tournament she used her free time making a pop video of fellow players, including Sharapova, Watson and Fernando Verdasco doing the Gangnam-style dance that she edited on her I-pad and has proved a hit on YouTube

'There isn't a load of stuff to do in China so you've got to make your own entertainment,' she explained.

Despite the frequent injuries, Robson has broadly halved her ranking each year since 2008. It is not committing the old British sin of getting too carried away to think the same will happen next season.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic finally justified the hype v England

Zlatan's a genius! Arrogant enigma’s wonder goal finally justifies his bragging

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UPDATED:

22:44 GMT, 15 November 2012

Zlatan Ibrahimovic gave himself the perfect 10 but for once he may have been guilty of underestimating his own importance.

For a start there was the wonder goal, a 30-yard propeller kick, the final piece in his four-goal demolition of England which quickly became an internet sensation, hailed as one of the best goals ever.

But there was more to it, because after a night when the Swedes declared their handsome new national stadium open for business, their captain’s heroics were considered capable of healing social wounds and stemming the rise of the political far-right in the country.

Staggering: Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores his fourth goal against England

Staggering: Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores his fourth goal against England

It was, in short, some performance. ‘Zlatan’s Arena’ wrote the newspaper Expressen in honour of Ibrahimovic, who was born in Sweden of mixed Balkan descent. He is, indeed, some footballer, although it wasn’t always quite like this. Just as England debate how to get the best from Wayne Rooney, the Swedes for years did the same with their talisman.

Ibrahimovic had everything a modern centre forward might want and he won the title each year, be it with Ajax, Juventus, Inter, Barcelona or AC Milan. Yet rarely did he summon such form with any consistency in a Sweden shirt.

When England beat the Swedes in a friendly at Wembley this time last year, he was anonymous, apparently uninterested, emitting strong vibes of impatience at the failings of his team-mates. It came soon after the publication of his book I, Zlatan in which he dared to criticise Pep Guardiola and recalled how he told the all-conquering Barcelona boss: ‘I am a Ferrari and you are driving me as if I am a Fiat.’

His strike-rate against English teams had been appalling, even though in 2010 he scored twice for Barca against Arsenal. Despite his unwavering self-belief, Ibrahimovic was conscious of popular opinion in England. The statistics would roll out every time he played here, along with the fact that, for all his posturing arrogance, he has failed to win the Champions League.

Main man: Ibrahimovic scored all four goals as England were beaten

Main man: Ibrahimovic scored all four goals as England were beaten

This year, however, something changed regarding Ibra the Enigma and his relationship with English football. It started when AC Milan destroyed Arsenal in the San Siro in February. Ibrahimovic scored once but there was more.

He was majestic as he orchestrated a 4-0 win for the Italian champions and he tormented England again in Kiev at Euro 2012, where he was the best player on the pitch despite defeat, as he embraced his new responsibilities in the national team.

When Erik Hamren took control he made a significant tactical tweak, abandoning the 4-4-2 formation to which Swedish football had been wed for many years.

Hamren adopted the increasingly fashionable 4-2-3-1 system but Ibrahimovic, who seemed to be the perfect centre forward for such a system, would be his playmaker in the No 10 role, as well as his captain.

In Stockholm, the stage was set as Sweden declared its new 50,000-seat Friends Arena open for business with the nation locked in a debate about immigration, prompted by growing support for far-right party Sweden Democrats.

Thorn: Ibrahimovic was also impressive last season when AC Milan beat Arsenal

Thorn: Ibrahimovic was also impressive last season when AC Milan beat Arsenal

Ibrahimovic, born in Malmo to parents from Bosnia and Croatia, is a totem for Sweden in the 21st century and his heroics against England on Wednesday were celebrated across the country.

After recovering from four down to draw 4-4 with Germany in a World Cup qualifier last month, Swedish fans rejoiced in a thrilling 4-2 win against England, the beauty of the final goal and one of the great individual efforts. But there was more.

Sportbladet dubbed him ‘Sweden’s Pride’, and Pontus Wernbloom said: ‘They probably weren’t happy with that, the idiots. I hope Zlatan shut them up.’

Kim Kallstrom added: ‘He is a modern Swede who stands for new Sweden. With foreign-born parents and certain problems in society, he can hopefully unite the country in a good way.’

If he does this, Ibrahimovic may be justified in upgrading the mark he awarded himself for his contribution to Swedish football from a 10 to an 11.

Manchester United beaten to Noe Baba by Fulham

United pipped to Irish wonderkid Baba as Fulham pull off major coup

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UPDATED:

17:55 GMT, 14 November 2012

Fulham have won the race to sign Irish teenage sensation Noe Baba ahead of competition from Manchester United, Sunderland and Celtic.

The 16-year-old defender opted for the London club after being convinced their recruitment and academy set-up would give him a better platform to progress.

United headed a list of 16 clubs chasing the Cameroon-born kid who plays for Castlebar Celtic in County Mayo, but the presence of Fulham's Malcolm Elias, Steve Wigley, Huw Jennings and Stewart Henderson swayed his mind.

Can't say Noe: Young Irishman Noe Baba (No 2) has chosen Fulham over Manchester United

Can't say Noe: Young Irishman Noe Baba (No 2) has chosen Fulham over Manchester United

The quartet were key figures at Southampton in the production and development of players such as Wayne Bridge, Theo Walcott, Gareth Bale and Alex Oxlade Chamberlain.

Although they went on to separate jobs they reunited at Craven Cottage this summer and their reputation is growing once again.

Fulham will formalise details on Thursday and Baba, who has already passed a medical and agreed a contract, will join from January for a fee of around 130,000.

Baba, who only turned 16 in August, was born in Cameroon and moved to Ireland with his family where he became the first African to captain an Irish age-group team when he led the Under 17s.

He was called into the Republic of Ireland Under 19 squad in October and can play centre-back, defensive midfield or full-back.

Ruud Gullit: Ditch Fernando Torres and sign Falcao

Ditch Torres and sign Falcao, says Gullit as former Chelsea boss hits out at 50m striker

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UPDATED:

23:13 GMT, 13 November 2012

Chelsea have been urged to ditch flop Fernando Torres and replace him with Atletico Madrid sensation Falcao.

That is the firm view of former Chelsea manager Ruud Gullit, who has called on the club to end the 50m striker's Stamford Bridge hell.

He said: 'If he can't still do it at
Chelsea, then they are going to have to look somewhere else. I think
Falcao is a very good striker.

Radamel Falcao

Fernando Torres

Change: Gullit has urged Chelsea to part company with Torres and sign Falcao

'I said at the beginning of the season that Chelsea might need another striker but obviously they wanted to give Torres a chance. If he has taken it, I don't know.'

Torres, the most expensive player in British transfer record history, has scored just 19 times since his move from Liverpool in 2011.

He has seen his performances questioned amid speculation that the club are finally losing patience with him, with Roman Abramovich said to be keen on splashing out 48m on Atletico ace Falcao.

And Gullit, also a former player at Stamford Bridge, has questioned whether Torres has really taken the chances given to him by the club.

'What he did in the past with Atletico, and Liverpool especially, was unbelievable,' Gullit added. 'For some reason he can't do it at Chelsea, it's a mystery to me.'