Thais seize lead, Mardan six back
A second straight six-under 66 sent Thailand's Itthipat Buranatanyarat to the top of the leader board at the Players Championship yesterday with a 132 total.
He is tied with compatriot Tirawet Kaewsiribandit (68) at the halfway stage of the US$100,000 (S$144,000) Asian Development Tour event at Raffles Country Club. Singapore's Mardan Mamat (70) is joint 11th on 138.
Lee thrashes Wong, S'poreans all out
PENANG • Top seed andhome favourite Lee Chong Wei thumped Singapore shuttler Derek Wong 21-10, 21-10 in just 28 minutes in the third round of badminton's Malaysian Masters last night.
The Republic's interest in the event is over, after women's singles player Liang Xiaoyu and mixed doubles pair Danny Bawa Chrisnanta and Vanessa Neo lost in the first round.
Valencia bank on ex-player Vicente
MADRID • Valencia haveturned to their retired winger Vicente Rodriguez to help them out of a slump that has left coach Gary Neville still searching for his first league victory in charge.
The 34-year-old played for Valencia during a golden period between 2000 and 2011, when they twice won La Liga as well as the Uefa Cup and the King's Cup, and has joined the technical staff of sporting director Jesus Garcia Pitarch.
Sprenger quits ahead of Olympics
SYDNEY • Australia's former world champion swimmer and double Olympic silver medallist Christian Sprenger announced his retirement yesterday at age 30, citing injury and a lack of motivation only months before the Rio Games.
Second in the 100m breaststroke in London 2012, and a world champion in 2013 in the same discipline, he said he did not want to just make up the numbers in Brazil in August.
Nadal may refresh coaching team
MADRID • Rafael Nadal'scoach and uncle Toni Nadal has not ruled out the possibility that the 14-time grand slam champion, who lost in the Australian Open first round, may seek a new or expanded coaching team in a bid to arrest his slide in form.
Barca win but Real held in Cup first leg
MADRID • HoldersBarcelona overcame the absence of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez to take a huge step towards the Copa del Rey semi-finals, with a 2-1 first-leg win at Athletic Bilbao on Wednesday.
La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid have work to do to reach the last four after a 0-0 draw at Celta Vigo in their quarter-final, first leg.