Cook gives up Test captaincy, will play on
LONDON • Alastair Cook has stepped down from his role as England Test captain after 59 Tests. He gave his decision to the chairman of the England & Wales Cricket Board, Colin Graves, on Sunday evening but has said he wants to continue playing.
There has been no announcement on his successor, though it is widely expected that vice-captain Joe Root will step up.
The 32-year old opener is England's most-capped Test captain. He has scored more Test centuries (30) than any previous captain and is the side's most prolific Test batsman with 11,057 runs in 140 Tests to date.
Pierce emotional after final game in Boston
BOSTON • Retiring National Basketball Association star Paul Pierce made an emotional farewell appearance in Boston on Sunday for the Los Angeles Clippers, in their 102-107 loss to the Celtics.
Pierce, a 10-time NBA All-Star, played 15 seasons for the Celtics and was the 2008 NBA Finals Most Valuable Player in leading Boston to the title. Making one final appearance as a player in Boston, the veteran forward started and played the first 4min 57sec. He re-entered the game with 19.8 seconds left to a major ovation and drained a three-pointer, thus avoiding what would have been his first point-less game ever in the building (630 games).
Springbok legend dies of muscle-wasting disease
JOHANNESBURG • Joost van der Westhuizen, the scrum-half for the South African rugby side who triumphed at the 1995 World Cup, died yesterday after a long battle with motor neurone disease at the age of 45, his charitable foundation said.
He played 89 games for the Springboks between 1993 and 2003 and scored 38 tries, a national record then.
Britain advance in Davis Cup after Canada mishit
OTTAWA • Britain booked a Davis Cup tennis quarter-final against France in odd fashion on Sunday, after the decisive final singles match ended when Canada's Denis Shapovalov hit the umpire with a ball.
The 17-year-old Israeli-born Canadian was disqualified after blasting a ball inadvertently into the face of chair umpire Arnaud Gabas, giving him a black eye, handing Britain's Kyle Edmund a 6-3, 6-4, 2-1 triumph that gave Britain a 3-2 victory.
AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS