Monaco effectively one Ligue 1 win away from title
PARIS • Monaco edged closer to a first French Ligue 1 title since 2000 after a 3-0 win at Nancy on Saturday gave the club a three-point lead over defending champions Paris Saint-Germain.
Tobias Badila's own goal and strikes by Bernardo Silva and Thomas Lemar put the principality side on 86 points with three games to play, while PSG, who have two games left, crushed Bastia 5-0.
Monaco, who have a much better goal difference than PSG (plus 69 to plus 51), will be virtually crowned champions if they beat Lille at home this weekend.
Diarra not giving up on France after UAE move
PARIS • France international footballer Lassana Diarra, who quit Marseille in February, has signed for Al Jazira in the United Arab Emirates.
Diarra, capped 34 times by France, has also played for Chelsea, Arsenal, Portsmouth and Real Madrid, as well as Anzhi Makhachkala and Lokomotiv Moscow in the Russian league.
The Paris-born midfielder insisted he remained available for France, citing the example of Andre-Pierre Gignac, who has been picked for Les Bleus despite playing in Mexico.
Sunwolves lose in thriller as Jaguares roar back
BUENOS AIRES • Jaguares of Argentina snapped a four-match losing streak with a 46-39 victory over Sunwolves of Japan on Saturday in a Super Rugby try fest.
Jaguares scored seven tries and Sunwolves five at Jose Amalfitani Stadium in a lively conclusion to round 11 of the regular season.
Victory left the hosts with a slim chance of making the quarter-finals - they trail Coastal Sharks of South Africa by eight points with five games to play. Sunwolves are only playing for pride, having won just one of 10 matches.
Always Dreaming wakes up as Kentucky Derby star
LOS ANGELES • Always Dreaming won the 143rd Kentucky Derby on Saturday, pulling away in the final straight on a sloppy track at Churchill Downs in Louisville to claim the first jewel in US flat racing's Triple Crown.
The triumph gave both jockey John Velazquez and trainer Todd Pletcher a second Kentucky Derby victory, but it was their first together.
Pletcher saddled 2010 Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver, while Velazquez followed up his 2011 winning ride aboard Animal Kingdom.
Trio of Aussie Olympians facing drug-test bans
SYDNEY• Olympic silver medallist Madeline Groves and two other Australian Olympic swimmers are facing possible two-year bans for missing drug tests, reports said yesterday.
Groves, Thomas Fraser-Holmes and Jarrod Poort missed three drug tests in a 12-month period, the Sunday Telegraph reported.
Athletes must keep their whereabouts updated for the purpose of drug testing and Swimming Australia has said Australian swimmers were reminded about anti-doping protocols as recently as last month.
US Olympic champion, 37, found dead at training site
WASHINGTON • American bobsledder Steven Holcomb, who came back from a suicide attempt over impending blindness to win Olympic gold in 2010, was found dead at a training site on Saturday, the US Olympic Committee said.
Holcomb, 37, was discovered in his room at the US Olympic Training Centre in Lake Placid, New York, the committee said in a statement. It gave no further details.
He made history at the Vancouver Olympics when he piloted the US four-man bobsled team, nicknamed "Night Train" to the gold medal.