SPORTS DAY: Lewis shows the Merc of a champion

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SPORTS DAY: Lewis shows the Merc of a champion

Your roundup of the sporting news of the day

Sports editor

FORMULA ONEHamilton back to his best with Spanish win
Lewis Hamilton won the Spanish Grand Prix in a commanding Mercedes one-two on Sunday to stretch his Formula One lead over Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel from four to 17 points. The victory, from pole position in a race that stayed dry despite the threat of rain, was the Briton’s second of the season, 64th of his career and third at the Circuit de Catalunya. Finland’s Valtteri Bottas was second, a hefty 20.5 seconds behind, with Dutch 20-year-old Max Verstappen completing the podium for Red Bull and Vettel fourth. Hamilton’s win followed on from the lucky victory that fell into his lap in Azerbaijan two weekends ago, but Sunday had nothing to do with chance and all to do with champions back to their best.
RUGBY
Injuries take gloss off Bulls' win over the Sharks
Injuries to tight-five wrecking balls Lood de Jager and Liza Gqoboka took the gloss off the Bulls’ 39-33 Super Rugby victory over the Sharks at Loftus on Saturday. Coach John Mitchell confirmed the injuries may be serious and that he would have to consider contingencies outside the Bulls’ group. “Lizo has a toe problem. It is concerning. We’ll get them both x-rayed. We’ve got issues. We are currently looking at what we can loan‚ with the northern-hemisphere South Africans finished and also some Pro14 teams finished. We are going to come up with a strategy in the next two weeks‚” said Mitchell.
SOCCERBrilliant Khuzwayo bids farewell to Chiefs
Kaizer Chiefs goalkeeper Brilliant Khuzwayo has bid a farewell to his teammates after he parted ways with the Naturena club following a 2-1 victory over Ajax Cape Town at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday. The 28-year-old has struggled to nail down a regular place in the Chiefs starting line-up, with the club preferring to use experienced No 1 Itumeleng Khune in cup and league matches. The Durban-born keeper‚ who has been linked with arch-rivals Orlando Pirates and Cape Town City‚ confirmed his departure on social media: “Thank you to the Kaizer Chiefs family it’s been a great six-years I love you all and thank you to the chairman (Kaizer Motaung) for giving me the opportunity.”
Salah scoops Player of the Year prize
Mohamed Salah has scooped up yet another award after his fabulous first season with Liverpool as the Egypt star was named the Premier League’s Player of the Year on Sunday. Salah had already won the PFA Player of the Year voted for by his fellow players, as well as the Football Writers’ Association Footballer of the Year award and Liverpool’s own Player of the Year prize. The 25-year-old’s deluge of individual honours come at the end of a season in which he has scored 31 goals in 37 league matches following his move from Roma last year.
FORMULA ONE
Todt defends FIA against driver criticism
The head of Formula One’s governing body has responded to criticism from drivers about rule changes, saying they had every opportunity to contribute but often failed to attend meetings. International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Jean Todt also said at the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday that he was always available to any driver who had a problem. “I do respect them and know how busy they can be and all that. But they have access. Unfortunately, very often there is a meeting and they don’t come to the meeting.” Todt pointed out also that he had appointed a number of former racers to FIA commissions.
TENNISHalep seeks French Open boost in Rome
World No 1 Simona Halep said on Sunday she was looking to lay the groundwork for a Grand Slam breakthrough at the French Open in the Rome WTA clay-court tournament. The 26-year-old was runner-up in Rome last year before losing in the final in Roland Garros for a second time. She was also a finalist in the Australian Open this year. “Of course, the Grand Slam is now for me the most important tournament,” said Halep ahead of the French Open on May 21. The Romanian has received a first-round bye and will open against either former two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka of Belarus or Japan’s Naomi Osaka.
RUGBY
Force demolish Tonga
The Western Force beat Tonga 47-17 in their World Series Rugby match in Perth on Sunday. Controversially kicked out of the Super Rugby competition last year but revived by Australian mining magnate Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest for a series of exhibition matches that he hopes will be a precursor to a new Indo-Pacific championship, the Force dominated the match. The Force beat Fiji 21-14 in the first match of the series last weekend. It was essentially a second-string Tonga side and they were no match for the Force, with injuries and a couple of yellow cards not helping the cause of the visitors. The home team ran in six tries, and also earned a penalty try, while the Tongans were only able to cross twice.
OLYMPICS
Britain’s 2012 Olympics minister dies of brain cancer
Tessa Jowell, the minister who played a key role in securing and delivering the 2012 London Olympics, has died after battling brain cancer, her family said Sunday. Jowell played a major part in landing the Games as Britain’s culture secretary. She then became the UK’s dedicated Olympics minister charged with bringing the world’s biggest sporting extravaganza to fruition. Jowell, 70, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in May 2017, suffered a haemorrhage on Friday, and had been in a coma until her death on Saturday, a family spokesman said.
BOXING
Lomachenko overpowers Linares for third world title
Ukraine’s Vasyl Lomachenko recovered from a flash knockdown to register a 10th-round knockout of Jorge Linares to enhance his pound-for-pound reputation by claiming the World Boxing Association lightweight title in New York on Saturday. A straight right in the sixth from the Venezuelan floored Lomachenko, who recovered to stun Linares with a body shot to win his third world title in as many weight classes in only his 12th professional bout at Madison Square Garden. “I relaxed a little bit,” the two-time Olympic champion Lomachenko said after suffering the first knockdown of his professional career.
CRICKET
Nepal teen Lamichhane shines on IPL debut
Teenage cricket sensation Sandeep Lamichhane said there was more talent waiting to be discovered in Nepal after an impressive Indian Premier League debut. Lamichhane, 17, the first Nepalese player to land an IPL contract, took one wicket for 25 from his four overs, opening the attack with his leg-spin for Delhi Daredevils against Royal Challengers Bangalore. He said after Saturday’s match that his journey had just begun: “I think these kind of leagues can help you grow your game. You have to stay busy with cricket all the time. Just as I have got chance in IPL there are many a talent in Nepal.”
AFP, Reuters, TimesLIVE

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