Tag Archives: wimbledon

Edgar Davids unable to save Barnet from final day heartache as Bees sink back into non-League

Davids unable to save Barnet from final day heartache as Bees sink back into non-League

By
Andrew Warshaw

PUBLISHED:

21:38 GMT, 27 April 2013

|

UPDATED:

01:54 GMT, 28 April 2013

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Edgar Davids’ first season in management ended in disappointment as Barnet fell out of the Football League after eight seasons.

Three years in succession, Barnet had somehow survived on the last day of the campaign. But this time there was no miracle as play-off qualifiers Northampton sealed their fate.

More than 1,300 visiting fans saw their team dominate for long periods but they were made to pay for poor finishing, including a couple of glaring misses, as Northampton’s Roy O’Donovan and Luke Guttridge netted twice in the space of six minutes midway through the second period.

Bitter pill: Edgar Davids contemplates his future

Bitter pill: Edgar Davids contemplates his future

Table

League Two table

Davids’ future at Barnet is now uncertain and a new stadium seven miles outside the borough will play host to Conference football next season.

Frustratingly, a draw would have been enough to save Barnet with Dagenham losing at home, while anything but a win for AFC Wimbledon against Fleetwood would have seen the south Londoners go down.

As it was, Barnet’s tally of 51 points was the highest ever for a side to lose their league status. ‘It’s certainly a bitter pill to swallow,’ said Davids, whose 40-year-old legs could not quite push his side over the line. ‘I’m aware of the consequences but the players can look at themselves in the mirror and say they did everything. You have to take chances but Northampton were more clinical than us.’

Davids, who was not being paid by the club and was brought in partly to develop Barnet’s academy, hinted strongly he would have to move on after an illustrious playing career that included both Milan clubs, Barcelona, Juventus and Tottenham as well as Ajax.

‘I’ll have to sit down with the chairman
and evaluate a lot of things,’ said the Dutchman. ‘You have to be
realistic. I have done everything that was asked of me in terms of the
objectives set. Fifty-one points playing good football and some
promising young players — that’s what makes it so hard.’

Anxious moments: Barnet fans contemplate relegation

Anxious moments: Barnet fans contemplate relegation

Northampton manager Adie Boothroyd, whose side meet Cheltenham in this week’s play-offs, felt for the visitors.

‘It’s one of those terrible professional situations,’ he said. ‘You have to do your job and you have to win. We got a good hiding there in the corresponding game and I wanted us to finish strongly.

‘Unfortunately someone has to suffer. I’m disappointed for them but it’s a great chance now for us to try and get promoted.’

Great Britain to play Croatia away in Davis Cup World Group play-off

Great Britain face away trip to Croatia in Davis Cup play-off… and Murray will play!

By
Stuart Fraser

PUBLISHED:

10:16 GMT, 10 April 2013

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UPDATED:

11:05 GMT, 10 April 2013

Great Britain have been drawn away to Croatia in September's Davis Cup World Group play-offs.

Leon Smith's team staged a stunning comeback to beat Russia 3-2 on Sunday in Coventry and earn a chance to gain promotion to the elite 16-team World Group for the first time since 2008.

Heroes: Britain beat Russia to clinch a place in September's World Group play-offs

Heroes: Britain beat Russia to clinch a place in September's World Group play-offs

World No 2 Andy Murray has already committed to play in the tie which will be held on the weekend following the conclusion of the US Open on 13-15 September.

Murray last played in September 2011 in a 5-0 win over Hungary and has opted out of each tie since, preferring to focus on his grand slam preparations.

Return: Murray (centre) has already committed to play in September's tie

Return: Murray (centre) has already committed to play in September's tie

James Ward and Dan Evans, the heroes
on Sunday as they won both their matches to clinch the win over Russia,
will likely battle it out for the second singles spot.

Croatia's team is likely to include world No 11 Marin Cilic, who Murray beat on his way to winning the Sony Open in Miami last month, and Ivan Dodig, ranked No 54.

The hosts have until April 30 to choose a venue and surface for the tie.

Leader: World No 11 Cilic will likely lead Croatia's team against Great Britain

Leader: World No 11 Cilic will likely lead Croatia's team against Great Britain

It will be Britain's first tie away from home since Smith, Murray's former coach, took over as captain from John Lloyd in 2010.

Smith has won six of his seven ties in charge and should be confident of promotion to the World Group, having avoided Spain and Switzerland in the draw.

Coach: Smith (left) was Murray's (right) coach when the world No 2 was in his teenage years

Coach: Smith (left) was Murray's (right) coach when the world No 2 was in his teenage years

Britain last played Croatia in the World Group play-offs in September 2007, winning 4-1 at Wimbledon.

Murray beat Cilic in five sets in the opening match, before Tim Henman – in his last match before retirement – clinched the tie by teaming up with Murray's brother Jamie in the doubles to beat Cilic and Lovro Zovko.

Handshakes: Cilic (right) played against Britain in 2007 in what was Tim Henman's (left) last match

Handshakes: Cilic (right) played against Britain in 2007 in what was Tim Henman's (left) last match

Rory Hamilton-Brown leaves Surrey to Sussex

Hamilton-Brown hopes to start again at Sussex after death of Surrey team-mate Maynard

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

23:54 GMT, 3 April 2013

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UPDATED:

23:56 GMT, 3 April 2013

Rory Hamilton-Brown wants to honour the memory of his tragic friend Tom Maynard after leaving Surrey to return to Sussex.

The former England Under 19 captain spoke on Wednesday of his need to leave the Oval following the loss of his flatmate and best pal, who died under a train after fleeing police in London last June.

Hamilton-Brown, 25, believes he can rediscover his drive and love for the game back at Hove, where he spent two years between 2007 and 2009.

Outbound: Rory Hamilton-Brown leaves Surrey for Sussex

Outbound: Rory Hamilton-Brown leaves Surrey for Sussex

'I realised I needed to be in a place where I felt close to people again, where there was that love and care,' he said.

'I had two fantastic years at Sussex and in a funny way, it always felt like home.

'A little part of me wants to think that I’m carrying him with me and that’s going to give you a deeper, harder drive than I’ve had before.'

Tragic: Tom Maynard died at Wimbledon Park Tube station

Tragic: Tom Maynard died at Wimbledon Park Tube station

Francis Jeffers scores twice for Accrington Stanley: LEAGUE TWO review

League Two round-up: Former England man Jeffers bags two for Stanley exactly ten years after turning out for Arsenal in the Champions League

By
David Kent

PUBLISHED:

22:24 GMT, 19 March 2013

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UPDATED:

22:39 GMT, 19 March 2013

LEAGUE TWO RESULTS

Accrington 4-0 AFC Wimbledon

Bradford 1-0 Wycombe

Rochdale 1-1 Gillingham

Southend 0-2 Plymouth

Torquay 2-1 Chesterfield

Barnet 2-0 Fleetwood

Former England striker Francis Jeffers scored twice to earn Accrington a crucial 4-0 win over AFC Wimbledon, which moved them off the foot of npower League Two and out of the drop zone.

Jeffers, playing for the league's bottom club exactly 10 years to the day since he appeared for Arsenal against Valencia in the Champions League, put Stanley two up with goals in the fifth and 19th minutes.

Will Hatfield added a third before the break and Lee Molyneux completed the rout.

Fran the man: Accrington Stanley escaped the relegation zone thanks to two Francis Jeffers goals

Fran the man: Accrington Stanley escaped the relegation zone thanks to two Francis Jeffers goals

Back in the day: Jeffers' brace comes 10 years to the day since he turned out for Arsenal in the Champions League

Back in the day: Jeffers' brace comes 10 years to the day since he turned out for Arsenal in the Champions League

LEAGUE TWO TABLE

League Two

The win took Accrington two points above the bottom two in the desperate fight to stay in the league.

It was a good night for the sides battling to stay up, with Torquay, Plymouth and Barnet, three of five sides level on points at the bottom at the start of the day, also winning.

Torquay won 2-1 at home to Chesterfield thanks to two goals in the opening eight minutes from Joss Labadie and Rene Howe.

Liam Cooper pulled one back in the 77th minute, but United held on.

Argyle had to wait a little longer to make the breakthrough at Southend, but a Paul Wotton penalty after 57 minutes and a Reuben Reid finish after 75 earned them a 2-0 victory.

Barnet were also 2-0 winners, at home to Fleetwood, thanks to a goal in each half from Mark Byrne and Luke Gambin.

It all meant Aldershot and York, not in action tonight, slipped into the relegation places.

At the other end of the table, league
leaders Gillingham had to come from behind to draw 1-1 at Rochdale,
Danny Kedwell's 56th-minute header cancelling out George Donnelly's
opener.

Capital One Cup
finalists Bradford boosted their hopes of getting into the play-offs
with a 1-0 win at home to Wycombe, Garry Thompson the scorer after seven
minutes.

Sitting out: Suspended Barnet manager Edgar Davids watched his side win 2-0

Sitting out: Suspended Barnet manager Edgar Davids watched his side win 2-0

Roger Federer says he does not lack ambition despite taking two months off

Don't view my break as a lack of ambition… I still want to win more titles, warns Federer

By
Mike Dickson

PUBLISHED:

18:46 GMT, 12 March 2013

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UPDATED:

18:46 GMT, 12 March 2013

Roger Federer’s back is creaking again and soon he will be taking nearly two months off, but the Wimbledon champion insists that neither of these factors should be seen as his ambition waning for more titles.

Once he is finished at this week’s $10 million BNP Paribas Open Federer will retreat until May for practice and family time, and byhis return he is unlikely to still be world No 2.

Andy Murray, who earlier this morning was due to face Taipei’s Yen Hsun Lu in the third round, is closing and could usurp the great Swiss if he were to significantly outperform him at this first Masters event of the season.

Fully focused: Roger Federer says he does not lack ambition

Fully focused: Roger Federer says he does not lack ambition

Federer concedes that the forthcoming break will not help his ranking in the short term but believes it will make him more dangerous for the summer’s three Grand Slams: 'If you play well then you can manage your schedule, but with the rankings you do need to win the tournaments you actually play. I know when I’m playing well I always have a shot.

'My schedule is not in set in stone, maybe if I lost early here or won the tournament it could change my mindset but I doubt it because what I want to do is practise hard. I’m really eager for that because I haven’t been able to practise as much as I would have liked in the last two years.

Taking a break: Federer is set to take two months off

Taking a break: Federer is set to take two months off

'This year the priority is a big build up then coming back really strong for the Masters events in Madrid and Rome before Roland Garros.'

Federer’s back suffered one of its periodic tweaks during his third round victory over Ivan Dodig, but he feels he will be fine to face compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka today.

Victory in that could give him a much-anticipated clash with Rafael Nadal, but first the Spaniard has to overcome the season’s most improved player in Ernests Gulbis.

The colourful Latvian is very talented but has revelled in being an international playboy for the past three years. Now pledging to at least cut down on the drinking, smoking and carousing he has got himself fitter, and the result has been a 12-match winning streak.

Angus Porter, Professional Cricketers" Association chief, reveals Tom Maynard was not tested for drugs before death

PCA chief Porter reveals Maynard wasn't tested for drugs last season before death

By
Mike Dawes

PUBLISHED:

16:57 GMT, 3 March 2013

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UPDATED:

16:57 GMT, 3 March 2013

Professional Cricketers' Association chief Angus Porter has revealed Tom Maynard was not drug tested last season before his death in June.

Maynard was killed in the early hours of June 18 after he was electrocuted and hit by a tube train near Wimbledon Park station.

Maynard had been trying to evade police after abandoning his car, and a Westminster Coroners' Court was told last week that he was four-times the legal alcohol limit to drive and that he had also taken cocaine and ecstasy on the night of the accident.

Tragic death: Tom Maynard was not tested for drugs last season

Tragic death: Tom Maynard was not tested for drugs last season

A post-mortem report also revealed the 23-year-old Surrey batsman, who was regarded as a potential England international, had used cocaine for at least three-and-a-half months.

In the wake of the findings the PCA have begun talks with the England and Wales Cricket Board to increase the levels of drug-testing – which would also include out-of-competition samples.

While Porter said Maynard's recreational drug use would have been detected under the current policy – which focuses on performance-enhancing drugs – he confirmed the batsman had not been tested last season.

'We have a drug-testing regime in cricket like those in all professional sports which is primarily focused on detecting performance-enhancing drugs for very obvious reasons,' Porter told BBC Radio Five Live.

Tribute: Maynard is remembered in the pavilion at The Oval

Tribute: Maynard is remembered in the pavilion at The Oval

He added: 'The pattern of drug use in Tom's case suggests he would have been picked up by our existing drugs programme.

'Although the use of recreational drugs outside of competition is not a breach of the anti-doping code, use in competition is a breach.

'So he would have tested for recreational drugs had he been tested in competition. Unfortunately given that is a random process he wasn't tested last year.'

Porter confirmed talks with the ECB to initiate out-of-competition testing were ongoing and that 'hair sampling' was likely to now be used to catch recreational drug users.

Shocking: A post-mortem report revealed that Maynard had been using cocaine for at least three months

Shocking: A post-mortem report revealed that Maynard had been using cocaine for at least three months

'We're in advanced discussions with the England and Wales Cricket Board about implementing a testing programme for drugs out of competition and almost certainly using hair sampling,' he said.

'As the coroner identified that gives you a longer history and a more certain test.

'We need to be clear we are talking about testing, not to catch cheats, but testing to find people who have a drugs problem.

'Therefore, it will be linked with a confidential programme of help, support, advice and if necessary treatment to get them back on the right path.'

Porter also promised to 'redouble' efforts to educate players on the issues associated with drug taking.

At the inquest: Maynard's former Surrey team-mates Jade Dernbach and Rory Hamilton-Brown (below)

At the inquest: Maynard's former Surrey team-mates Jade Dernbach and Rory Hamilton-Brown (below)

Friend: Rory Hamilton-Brown goes into the inquest

'We work very hard to make sure that all players understand both the challenges they face as professionals and also understand the risks that go with those and the issues associated with being in the public eye,' he said.

'We'll be redoubling our efforts in that respect to make sure they are educated and have access to help when they need it.

'If we are going to turn this in to a positive in any way it's that the things we are wrestling with are ones that are challenges for society at large. If we can draw attention to those challenges then that will be a good thing.'

Andy Murray v Roger Federer LIVE AUSTRALIAN OPEN

LIVE: Murray v Federer – the action from the Australian Open semi-final as it happens

By
Martin Domin

PUBLISHED:

00:01 GMT, 25 January 2013

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UPDATED:

08:16 GMT, 25 January 2013

Andy Murray is aiming to win his second Grand Slam title in Australia, but first he must navigate his way past old foe Roger Federer in the semi-final in Melbourne.

The pair have had their fair share of entertaining clashes and we look set for another today with Novak Djokovic lying in wait for the winner ahead of Sunday's final.

You can follow all the action here and get in touch by e-mailing [email protected]

8.15am: Although Murray leads Federer 10-9 on the head-to-head record, the Scot has never beaten the former world No 1 in a grand slam. Most recently, he was defeated in the Wimbledon final.

Murray did however earn revenge at the Olympics, winning the gold medal match in London.

8.10am: The temperature has dropped to around 20C in Melbourne as the opening slam of the season draws to a close. The two semi-finalists won't be on court before 8.30am UK time.

8am: Welcome to Sportsmail's coverage of Andy Murray's semi-final against Roger Federer.

One step away: Andy Murray must get past Roger Federer to make his third grand slam final in a row

One step away: Andy Murray must get past Roger Federer to make his third grand slam final in a row

Nadal plans to make return on South American soil at the VTR Open in Chile

Nadal's comeback is hotting up as he plans a return in Chile

By
Liv Lee

PUBLISHED:

16:44 GMT, 17 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:45 GMT, 17 January 2013

Rafael Nadal will return next month at the VTR Open in Chile.

The competition starts on February 4 and will be the first tournament the world No 4 has competed in since Wimbledon, where he was knocked out in the second round by the relative unknown Lukas Rosol.

Since then Nadal has been recovering from a knee injury.

On the way back: Nadal made it to the final in last year's Australian Open, but has been out injured since last June

On the way back: Nadal made it to the final in last year's Australian Open, but has been out injured since last June

He was supposed to return to action
earlier this month but was sidelined by a stomach virus and forced to
wait another few weeks.

It will be the first time Nadal has
played on South American soil since 2005 and no doubt the 11-time Grand
Slam winner is itching to get back on the court, having posted numerous
updates and photos of his recovery on his Facebook page.

Australian Open 2013: Laura Robson into second round

Robson beats American Oudin to deliver first win and join Watson in round two

By
Mike Dickson

PUBLISHED:

05:33 GMT, 15 January 2013

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UPDATED:

06:16 GMT, 15 January 2013

Laura Robson spent the first year of her life in this charming city and, just short of her 19th birthday, she has now won a grand slam match there.

The British No 2 convincingly overcame America’s Melanie Oudin 6-2 6-3 after 75 minutes of highly efficient combat, played out in warm conditions to reach the second round of the Australian Open, where she will join Heather Watson.

Robson now has the tough task of facing former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, a left hander to whom she is not entirely dissimilar in their natural ball-striking abilities. The Czech will not hugely relish the task, given what her younger opponent did to some illustrious names in the US Open.

Double trouble: Laura Robson joined Heather Watson in the second round of the Australian Open

Double trouble: Laura Robson joined Heather Watson in the second round of the Australian Open

Double trouble: Laura Robson joined Heather Watson in the second round of the Australian Open

There was also evidence in this first round match that the hard work Robson has put in during a long training stint in Florida before Christmas with Croatian coach Zeljko Krajan has already paid a dividend.

She looked in good shape, is gradually moving better and there seems to be some extra ‘pop’ on her groundstrokes and, especially, her serve. That yielded eleven aces on a medium paced hard court and readily got her out of trouble on the few occasions she was threatened.

Oudin is a cautionary tale, a rising star at 17 who reached the US Open quarter finals and Wimbledon fourth round but has subsequently struggled to handle the pressures thrust upon her in a country anxiously looking for successors to the Williams sisters.

Blue skies: Robson impressed the healthy crowd in attendance in Melbourne

Blue skies: Robson impressed the healthy crowd in attendance in Melbourne

Robson’s rise has been more gradual due mainly to growth-related injuries, and that may not be a bad thing. Having lost here in the first round a year ago she should now move back into the top 50 having slipped this week to 53, and she looks worth that position.

Supported by a decent British contingent in the crowd Robson, who arrived in the UK aged six via a long stint in Singapore, was even treated to a version of the national anthem as she pulled ahead in the first set.

Oudin, ranked 30 places below her, was behind from the start as the Wimbledon-based southpaw repeatedly tucked into her serve and forced her onto the backfoot. When Robson came to serve she was hardly threatened, regularly able to crunch away a winner from a short return as the American struggled to cope with the swing, spin and speed of her left-handed delivery.

Eyes on the prize: Robson will now take on former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in the second round

Eyes on the prize: Robson will now take on former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in the second round

The British No 2 was up around the 110 mph mark on plenty of occasions and the diminutive Oudin was left flailing around in despair, not helped by her misfiring forehand in the case of rallies getting started. Such was the accuracy of Robson’s drives into the corners that most of the time she was not in a comfortable postion to play the shot.

Robson got ahead for 3-2 in the second but then played her worst service game to get broken for the only time. She broke again immediately afterwards and this time had no problem consolidating, clinching a second match point when Oudin sent another forehand wide and long.

After losing to her near contemporary Sloane Stephens in the first round of the Hobart WTA event last week this was just what was needed, and she now has very little to lose against Kvitova in what could be steaming hot conditions.

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

|

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.'