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Ricky Hatton v Vyacheslav Senchenko live on Primetime pay-per-view

Hatton's big comeback to be screened on pay-per-view channel Primetime

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UPDATED:

13:39 GMT, 25 October 2012

So huge is the interest in Ricky Hatton's comeback fight on November 24 that it will be screened on pay-per-view television in Britain.

The 20,000-seater Manchester Arena was sold out within hours when tickets went on sale – before the Hitman even announced the identity of his opponent, namely Ukraine’s immediate past world welterweight champion Vyacheslav Senchenko.

Prime time: Ricky Hatton's comeback will be screen on pay-per-view

Prime time: Ricky Hatton's comeback will be screen on pay-per-view

The fight will be broadcast live here on Primetime at 14,95, as well as in America on the major Showtime network.

Hatton said: 'I’m humbled to have so many great fans.

'After my knock-out by Manny Pacquaio I want to make them all proud of me again.'

Gareth Bale will keep lid on Charlie Adam feud, says Joe Allen

Allen backs Wales team-mate Bale to keep a lid on feud with Scot star Adam

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UPDATED:

21:30 GMT, 9 October 2012

Joe Allen has promised Wales will not allow a feud between Gareth Bale and Charlie Adam to spill into their World Cup qualifying clash with Scotland.

Welshman Bale, who missed three months in 2011 after Adam’s tackle snapped his ankle ligaments, branded the Scot a ‘coward’ when they clashed again in a pre-season friendly between Tottenham and Liverpool.

Backing: Joe Allen has backed Gareth Bale to let his football go the talking when he comes up against Charlie Adam, with whom he has had a long-running spat after a couple of nasty tackles

Backing: Joe Allen has backed Gareth Bale to let his football go the talking when he comes up against Charlie Adam, with whom he has had a long-running spat after a couple of nasty tackles

Taken down: Adam has twice forced Bale off early in matches, one of which came in a friendly earlier this year

Taken down: Adam has twice forced Bale off early in matches, one of which came in a friendly earlier this year

Friday’s Group H encounter at Cardiff
City Stadium will be the first time they have faced each other since. It
will add spice to a match both countries must win to keep alive hopes
of going to Brazil 2014.

But Liverpool’s 15m signing Allen said: ‘I don’t think it will be more feisty than any other game. There is that element of rivalry, but any game at international level is approached the same way and that is purely to try to win.’

Adam, now at Stoke, has insisted he did say sorry to Bale at the time. He said: ‘I apologised to him during the game after a corner. I said to him I was sorry and thought everything was all right.

'I also apologised to the Tottenham manager at half time. Then all of a sudden I was being called a coward. That’s football and it won’t stop me tackling. I hope it is done and dusted now.’

Allen, whose arrival at Anfield forced Adam to move, believes Bale will put the matter to one side. He said: ‘Will there be any extra motivation for him Not from that point of view.

'He performs every time he goes out on a pitch and I am sure the Scots will be pretty scared about facing a player of his calibre.'

Yohan Blake breaks car window as he hits cricket six

Sprint for cover: Olympics star Blake turns his hand to cricket… and ends up smashing car window!

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UPDATED:

13:06 GMT, 18 September 2012

If you thought Yohan Blake’s sole purpose in life was to wait for Usain Bolt to retire and take over the throne of sprint king, then think again.

The Jamaican took silver medal in the 100m and 200m behind his compatriot at London 2012 but he also has another passion in life, playing cricket – and he’s not too bad either.

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Oops: Yohan Blake hit a six... but in doing so damaged the car below

Oops: Yohan Blake hit a six… but in doing so damaged the car below

Oops: Smashed window of the car

In his first match since the Olympics,
Blake featured for Bartley XI in a Twenty20 game as they defeated
Correctional Services by 36 runs at the Prison Oval in Jamaica last
weekend.

Blake batted at five and scored 20 off 21 balls before being stumped on the last ball of the innings trying to dance down the wicket to hit a six.

It’s just as well he missed because an earlier shot he sent over the boundary not only cleared the ground but unfortunately smashed the rear view window of a parked car.

Speaking after the game, Blake explained that he was willing to discuss the cost of the damage with the owner while also commenting on the match where he opened the bowling for his side.

Start at 4:25 for Blake's six

Blake said: ‘I was a bit nervous as I haven’t batted in a while but I just had to play myself in and with 20 off 21 balls that’s what I did today.

‘The owner of the car said ‘that’s just cricket’ and I said ‘you know if anything, we can always talk’, it was a wonderful six but I know the owner of the car, he’s a good guy.

‘I’m working on the bowling, I start off
well but I tend to lose concentration later on. The skipper made me
change ends which I didn’t like but I go with it because I don’t want to
go against what the captain says.’

So serious is Blake on his cricket, he claimed he wants to quit the track in six years so he can play more of the sport.

Big hitter: Blake was good with the bat

Big hitter: Blake was good with the bat

The 22-year-old was also lost for words trying to describe the honour of ringing the bell at Lord’s last month in the third test between England and South Africa.

‘With this hard training in track and
field, I know that cricket training is not that hard and I can make the
team and it is my first love,’ Blake said. ‘I want to finish this
(athletics) as early as possible, so I can play my cricket, like
somewhere around 30, 29, 28, in that region.

‘To
be the first non-cricketer to ring the bell at Lord’s, the greatest
sports ground in the world, with two top teams and get a standing
ovation from the crowd, words cannot explain how I felt.’

Blake interview after the match

Blake’s first target would be to travel to Australia and play in the Twenty20 Big Bash League along with Bolt, who also has eyes on appearing for Manchester United.

He added: ‘Usain and I said let’s go to Australia and play some cricket, let’s check out the Big Bash and see what it is all about.

‘I know those guys are really quick, but I am always ready and I am always playing cricket. I have my bowling machine and my batting machine at home, so I have been practising and getting ready for that.’

London 2012 Olympics: Torch forced to change route after protests in Londonderry

Torch relay route forced to change after protesters scuffle with police in Derry

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UPDATED:

19:07 GMT, 4 June 2012

The Olympic torch had to be rerouted 100 yards on Monday because of protests in Northern Ireland.

Minor scuffles with a group of people demonstrating against police raids on homes in Londonderry prompted the switch near the city's Guildhall, SDLP MLA Mark Durkan said.

It followed a day of dramatic scenery and cheering crowds as the flame made its way around the region.

Unrest: A protester tussles with PSNI officers near the Peace Bridge in Derry City

Unrest: A protester tussles with PSNI officers near the Peace Bridge in Derry City

Tension: Protesters are watched by Police Service of Northern Ireland officers in Londonderry

Tension: Protesters are watched by Police Service of Northern Ireland officers in Londonderry

Mr Durkan said: 'We support anyone's right to protest but that has been abused here today in Derry.

'People are just absolutely disgusted that there will be negative headlines for the city coming out of a great afternoon.'

Change of plan: The Olympic Torch is rerouted in Guildhall Street, Londonderry

Change of plan: The Olympic Torch is rerouted in Guildhall Street, Londonderry

Overshadowed: The protests forced the rerouting of the Olympic Torch relay

Overshadowed: The protests forced the rerouting of the Olympic Torch relay

He added: 'It was not a massive detour, it had been coming down Custom House Street and then had to turn and go back around the Guildhall so you are talking 100 yards but it was not what was planned and that is pretty embarrassing.'

Peak: Torchbearer Peter Jack holds the Olympic Flame aloft on the Giant's Causeway, County Antrim

Peak: Torchbearer Peter Jack holds the Olympic Flame aloft on the Giant's Causeway, County Antrim


Torch tour: Bearers Clare Leahy (left) and Denis Broderick carry the torch over the Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge in Ballintoy

Torch tour: Bearers Clare Leahy (left) and Denis Broderick carry the torch over the Carrick-A-Rede rope bridge in Ballintoy


Spectacular views: The Olympic Torch was treated to some fine scenery

Spectacular views: The Olympic Torch was treated to some fine scenery

Handover: Lee Hamill passes the Flame to Jean Jones in front of Dunluce Castle

Handover: Lee Hamill passes the Flame to Jean Jones in front of Dunluce Castle

View from the bridge: Northern Ireland provided some incredible sights

View from the bridge: Northern Ireland provided some incredible sights

Andy Carroll "goal" should have stood, says Steven Gerrard

It could have been given! Gerrard adds to Carroll debate but Terry says ref was right

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UPDATED:

14:43 GMT, 6 May 2012

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has thrown fuel on the fire of the debate raging over Andy Carroll's header which was ruled out in the FA Cup Final at Wembley.

The Liverpool striker powered a header towards goal which Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech clawed out, with replays inconclusive on whether the ball had crossed the line.

Although the Reds' talisman accepts the decision would have been a tough call for the assistant referee to make, he believed his side have an argument for the goal to be given.

Was it a goal Andy Carroll's late effort was not awarded while replays proved inconclusive

Was it a goal Andy Carroll's late effort was not awarded while replays and stills (below) proved inconclusive

Over the line: Computer stills show the position of Carroll's header

'It's difficult for the officials,'
he said. ''Obviously from a biased point of view, we've got an argument
with the computer image but the officials have got an impossible task
when it's so close and until technology comes in, then with decisions
like that, you can't really put a big argument forward.

'It's one of those things: Chelsea
got a bit of luck against Tottenham in the semi (when they had a goal
awarded despite the ball not crossing the line).

'They got a bit of luck again yesterday. Maybe this was their year.'

Chelsea captain John Terry hailed Cech for a fantastic piece of goalkeeping.

'Pete's made a great save – let's not take it away from him – probably one of the best saves in an FA Cup final.'

Yes it was: Carroll felt his header should have been given as Liverpool's equaliser

Yes it was: Carroll felt his header should have been given as Liverpool's equaliser

Terry insisted the whole of the ball
did not cross the line but admitted the incident would again provoke
talk of introducing goalline technology.

'Obviously, there is going to be talk of goalline technology again,' he said. 'I'm sure they're looking into it and trying to bring it in as quickly as possible.'

Carroll thought the effort had gone in. He said: 'I thought it was over the line. I thought it hit the other side of the bar. We were unlucky. We had a few chances but we couldn't put them away. It wasn't to be.'

Cech, however, was adamant that was the right decision.

He told ITV: 'I don't think it was over the line. If the ball was behind the line I couldn't have kept it out. I'm 100 per cent sure it was not in, and I felt that from the first moment.'

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish backed Carroll but refused to criticise the officials decision even though it cost his side the chance of forcing a comeback.

Oh no it wasn't: Chelsea keeper Petr Cech insisted his save denied Carroll's effort from completely crossing the line

Oh no it wasn't: Chelsea keeper Petr Cech insisted his save denied Carroll's effort from completely crossing the line

Dalglish said: 'I thought it was in but if it hasn't gone in then we'll give the officials the credit they deserve.'

Liverpool defender Daniel Agger, meanwhile, admitted they were not good enough for the first hour of their FA Cup final defeat.

The Reds did not seem to come alive until Carroll's introduction in the 55th minute but by then they were 2-0 down to goals from Ramires, in the first half, and Didier Drogba.

Not given: Luis Suarez was cautioned for his protestations

Not given: Luis Suarez was cautioned for his protestations

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But Agger admitted Liverpool paid for their poor start.

'We can't use that (fightback) for much. It simply was not good enough for the first hour and we can only blame ourselves,' said the Denmark defender.

'We definitely were not good enough.

'Andy did really well when he came on and got a lot of balls to work with but sadly it was not enough.'

Debate continued long after the final whistle over whether Carroll's header had actually crossed the line but Agger said he had no idea from his position on the pitch.

What might have been: Carroll and his Liverpool team-mates were dejected after losing the final to Chelsea

What might have been: Carroll and his Liverpool team-mates were dejected after losing the final to Chelsea

'I definitely couldn't see anything because I was at the other end so people watching television will have to decide that.'

Midfielder Jordan Henderson admitted he went up claiming the equalising goal more in hope than expectation.

'I appealed because that is what you have got to do,' said the England Under-21 midfielder, who was at a loss to explain Liverpool's sluggish start.

'I am not sure why we started quite slowly in the first half. In the second half we came out and played some good stuff and we should have got back into the game.

'I think we will be disappointed when we look back.

'We wanted to win this game and we didn't and we are very disappointed.'

Carlos Vela wanted by Real Betis

Real Betis ramp up bid to sign Arsenal striker Vela

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UPDATED:

21:41 GMT, 25 April 2012

Real Betis are keen on Carlos Vela, 23, who is on loan at Real Sociedad.

The Arsenal striker expressed his desire to leave the Emirates earlier this month, saying: 'From my point of view, from a footballing and lifestyle standpoint it is better to stay in this league.

'I have a contract with an English team and if I have to return there I will adapt, but if I could stay here I would be happier.'

The Real deal: Vela is keen to stay in Spain

The Real deal: Vela is keen to stay in Spain

Dirk Kuyt drops Liverpool quit threat in demand for more games

Kuyt in Kop quit threat as Dutchman demands more playing time

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UPDATED:

09:19 GMT, 20 March 2012

Dirk Kuyt has hinted he could be forced to leave Liverpool as the Dutch forward grows increasingly frustrated at a lack of games under Kenny Dalglish.

Kuyt has spent six years on Merseyside and been an ever-present in the team until this term, in which has started just 17 league games, featuring as a substitute in eight.

Although the 31-year-old admits he would love to spend the rest of his career playing in front of the Kop, he concedes his Carling Cup snub – in which he did not start – has made him consider his future.

Frustrated: Dirk Kuyt wants to start more regularly for Liverpool

Frustrated: Dirk Kuyt wants to start more regularly for Liverpool

Kuyt came off the bench to score Liverpool's important second before firing home in the shootout win over Cardiff at Wembley last month but was disappointed not to be involved from the off.

'I want to play every game. It is very disappointing when I don't – like the Carling Cup final for instance,' Kuyt told the Mirror.

'From my point of view I'm feeling really well physically, I don't think I've ever felt stronger, and I'm ready to play games, I am ready to play every game of the season.

'For me it is all about trying to convince the manager he needs to pick me more than he does at the moment.

Sitting out: Kuyt has started eight league games on the bench this season

Sitting out: Kuyt has started eight league games on the bench this season

'I can see myself staying at Anfield for the rest of my career, as long as I am satisfied and am entitled to play in each game to get to the level I want to be.

'As long as I play as much as I want to play then I will be happy, but if it gets to the point where I am not playing every game any more, then maybe I will have to make another decision – but I don't think about that at this stage.'

Kell Brook wants to fight Amir Khan

Brook wants blockbuster Khan showdown after outclassing Hattton

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UPDATED:

14:29 GMT, 18 March 2012

Kell Brook is targeting world title glory and a blockbuster showdown with Amir Khan which promoter Eddie Hearn insists can attract 50,000 people at an outdoor venue in England.

Brook continued his ascent to elite level this weekend as he wowed 10,000 fans at the Motorpoint Arena in his Sheffield hometown by outclassing British welterweight rival Matthew Hatton.

The unbeaten 25-year-old, who has been on the cusp of a world title challenge for some time, proved his box office appeal and big-fight temperament with a superb performance of poise and power en route to a wide unanimous decision victory.

Bring it on! Brook wants Khan showdown

Bring it on! Brook wants Khan showdown

Brook has long been linked with fellow Englishman Amir Khan and has called for a fight between the pair for years.

Now, however, he is making a name for himself in his own right and with a world title belt around his waist, hopes he can eventually lure former light-welterweight champion Khan into a scrap.

'Of course I want Khan,' he said. 'I've been banging on about Amir Khan, but I'm going to do my own thing and if that fight happens, it happens, and I'll smash him.'

Matchroom boss Hearn said: 'Money talks. We've sold 10,000 for Kell Brook v Matthew Hatton. I could sell 40,000 tickets for Kell Brook against Amir Khan. It's a pay-per-view fight.

'It's probably one of the few fights that is going to bring back pay-per-view television to British boxing. Will Amir Khan take it I wouldn't imagine so.

'It has to be a pay-per-view, outdoor fight, because he's got big revenue coming from HBO in America. So to bring it to seven, eight, nine o'clock at night, there has to be big money in the UK. With 40,000 fans and pay-per-view TV, that's a fight that can happen.

Outclassed: Brook was the comfortable points victor over Hatton

Outclassed: Brook was the comfortable points victor over Hatton

'Let me tell you, Kell would absolutely destroy Amir Khan. We'll fight him. We'll fight him next, 100 per cent and make it happen outdoors with a crowd of 40,000 or 50,000.'

Hearn insists the numbers add up.
'It's an easy fight to make money from,' he said. 'They would both get
millions of pounds. It sounds easy. Or for us, we'll come back here in
July and sell 10,000 tickets again (against someone else).'

Brook insists he just wants big names and big fights.

He said: 'I want whoever I can get my hands on. I'll be watching Vyacheslav Senchenko v Paulie Malignaggi and Andre Berto v Victor Ortiz with great interest.

'I want to be fighting at that top table now with elite fighters. I think I've proved I deserve to be there.

'Forget Khan. I'm doing my own thing. I'll get a belt and will be packing big arenas out.

Rematch: Khan will first fight Lamont Peterson

Rematch: Khan will first fight Lamont Peterson

'I've done this since I was nine years old and I'm buzzing at the moment. The dream is still popping. We're still unbeaten and it's going to stay that way for a long time.'

Hatton delivered a ringing endorsement after being on the end of a boxing lesson.

The former European champion, who pushed vaunted WBC light-middleweight champion Saul Alvarez all the way last year, said: 'I rate Kell very highly after that.

'He's the best fighter I've faced and I include Alvarez in that. Kell broke my nose in the first round and I didn't think things could get much worse. I was wrong about that.'

Australian Grand Prix faces axe, warns Bernie Ecclestone

You're on borrowed time! Bernie warns that Australia could lose its grand prix after 2015 race

Bernie Ecclestone has warned that the Australian Grand Prix faces being axed from the Formula One calendar.

Melbourne’s Albert Park, which is set to host this season’s curtain raiser in a fortnight's time, has a contract until 2015.

But Ecclestone says the sport is prepared to end its 30-year association with Australia, calling it the 'least viable' race on the calendar.

A lovely sight: Melbourne's Albert Park will stage the first race of the new season

A lovely sight: Melbourne's Albert Park will stage the first race of the new season

'We have a contract which we will
respect – so up until 2015 we are in good shape,' Ecclestone, 81, told
Melbourne newspaper The Age.

'After then, we really don’t know. If we
were to have a divorce from our friends in Melbourne we would probably
be walking away from Australia.

'Because
I can’t see how Adelaide could make it happen, or anywhere else, if
Melbourne can’t. The race itself, from our point of view, is probably
the least viable of all the races we have.'

End of the road: Melbourne may lose its grand prix after the current contract

End of the road: Melbourne may lose its grand prix after the current contract

Ecclestone hinted that he would be prepared to negotiate a reduced fee if the race was held under floodlights making it more suitable to European television audiences.

'We would have a look, maybe we could help subsidise that a little bit,’ he added.

'We have other races ready to take the place of Australia – which we don’t want to happen.

Ringmaster: Bernie Ecclestone has warned the Australian Grand Prix over its future

Ringmaster: Bernie Ecclestone has warned the Australian Grand Prix over its future

'But it would be wrong of me to have to report to our board, “Terribly sorry about this but we have to walk away from wherever to retain Australia”.'

Since staging its first Formula One event in 1985, the Australian Grand Prix has played host to a number of memorable races.

Unforgettable: Mansell lost the 1986 title in Adelaide

Unforgettable: Mansell lost the 1986 title in Adelaide

Adelaide Street Circuit, which ran the event prior to Melbourne, was the scene of Nigel Mansell’s unforgettable tyre blow out as he looked poised to clinch the 1986 world title.

The same track also saw Michael Schumacher and Damon Hill infamously collide, earning the former his first of seven world titles back in 1994.

Manchester City confident of selling out FA Cup tie against United

Manchester City confident of selling out FA Cup tie against United despite late ticket availability

Manchester City are confident they will have a full house at the Etihad Stadium for Sunday’s FA Cup tie against United, despite tickets still being available on the club’s website on Thursday.

United would take a dim view of any empty seats in the 48,000-seat arena, after City refused them the 7,200 away allocation they felt they were due.

There will be around 5,700 away fans in attendance.

Empty seats: Home fans left Old Trafford early in October, but City are confident of selling out

Empty seats: Home fans left Old Trafford early in October, but City are confident of selling out