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With urn wrested, Smith eyes series sweep
Perth: Steve Smith praised his “exceptional” team as Australia reclaimed the Ashes with an innings win over England in the third Test in Perth on Monday, and set his sights on a series whitewash. Australia dismissed England for 218 in their second innings after rain delays and a pitch controversy on the final day in Perth to win back the urn in the last Ashes Test to be played at the WACA Ground. That gave the home side an
 
 
Root bats for veterans Cook, Broad after Ashes loss
England captain Joe Root defended his underperforming senior players after his team meekly handed back the Ashes to Australia in Perth on Monday. Victory by an innings and 41 runs gave Australia an unassailable 3-0 lead in the series, but Root said the English had to be careful not to make hasty decisions based on this series. Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen said one of the opening bowlers needed to be dropped, in an
   
Kerala Kings rule in Sharjah, clinch maiden T10 title
Sharjah: Eion Morgan smashed a blitzkrieg 63 off 21 balls to guide Kerala Kings to the title of the maiden T10 Cricket League (TCL) with a victory over Punjabi Legends in the final at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Sunday. Morgan and Sterling put the Legends’ bowling attack to the sword as they plundered runs at will. After losing the wicket of opener Chadwick Walton, the duo refused to go on the back foot; rather they took the
 
 
City ‘planning talks’ to extend Guardiola’s contract
London: Manchester City are planning talks with manager Pep Guardiola at the end of the season as the Premier League leaders seek to tie him to a long-term deal, reports said on Monday. City are 11 points clear of nearest challengers Manchester United, are on a record run of 16 consecutive wins in England’s top flight and through to the Champions League knockout phase after comfortably winning their group. Guardiola, 46, is
   
Farah ‘shocked’ to win BBC Sports Personality award
LONDON: Britain’s Olympic and world champion Mo Farah capped his final season as a track athlete by winning the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award on Sunday. The distance runner, who won his sixth world championships gold medal in London this year when he triumphed in the 10,000 metres, was named the winner ahead of second-placed superbike rider Jonathan Rea and para athlete Jonnie Peacock. Pre-event favourites, world
 
 
Windies pin hopes on Gayle force for NZ ODIs
Wellington: The West Indies will hope short-form master Chris Gayle can inspire a misfiring batting line-up in the one-day international series against New Zealand starting on Wednesday. The tourists meekly surrendered with the bat as they slumped to a 2-0 Test series whitewash against the Black Caps, and need a major improvement in the three ODI games. Gayle, arriving fresh from a record-breaking stint in the Bangladesh
   
Patriots clinch division title with wild win
Los Angeles: Tom Brady piloted Super Bowl champions New England to the winning touchdown with 56 seconds left on Sunday as the Patriots clinched the AFC East with a gut-wrenching 27-24 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. On a day when the puzzle pieces of the NFL playoffs were dropping into place, the Patriots thwarted Pittsburgh’s bid to clinch a first-round bye and potentially homefield advantage throughout the playoffs.
 
 
Giordano shines in Flames’ victory over Canucks
VANCOUVER: The Calgary Flames were happy with their overall game despite winning just twice in their last seven games. That faith in the system paid off with a big victory over a depleted opponent on Sunday. Mark Giordano scored twice, Sam Bennett had a goal and three assists, and the Flames snapped a three-game losing streak with a 6-1 victory over the injury-riddled Vancouver Canucks. “We’ve been playing well lately,”
   
Welily shocks Sherbini to take world title
Manchester: Egypt’s Raneem El Welily ended a three-year wait for atonement when she won the world title by upsetting her compatriot Nour El Sherbini 3-11, 12-10, 11-7, 11-5 in Sunday’s final. World number two Welily made up for the loss of four match points against Nicol David in the 2014 final in front of her home crowd in Cairo by beating Sherbini, who had been in fine form and was looking to become the first Egyptian to win
 
 
Kooreman claims final US Olympic speedskating spot
KEARNS: Four years ago, Jessica Kooreman qualified for the Olympics on the first day of the team trials. This time, she went into her last race with everything still up in the air. Kooreman clinched one of the final three Olympic team spots at the US short track speedskating trials on Sunday. It’s her second straight Olympics after competing in the 2014 Sochi Games. Kooreman joins Lana Gehring, who competed in the 2010
   
James sparks Cavaliers to win over Wizards
Los Angeles: LeBron James posted his fourth triple-double in five games with 20 points, 12 rebounds and 15 assists as the streaking Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Washington Wizards 106-99 on Sunday. Kevin Love scored a team-high 25 points, while Jeff Green had 15 points for the Cavaliers who have won 18 of 19, including their past five NBA games. The Eastern Conference giants engaged in a hard-fought battle as the teams
 
 
Suarez, Paulinho move Barcelona 11 clear of Real
Madrid: Barcelona opened up an 11-point La Liga lead over Real Madrid ahead of next weekend’s Clasico between the Spanish giants as Luis Suarez and Paulinho each scored twice in a 4-0 thrashing of Deportivo la Coruna on Sunday. Lionel Messi also saw a penalty saved and hit the woodwork three times as Barca regained their six-point lead over Atletico Madrid in second place. Real remain down in fourth, but do have a game in hand
   
Premiership leaders City chase League Cup glory
London: With Manchester City romping away with the Premier League title race, this week’s League Cup quarter-final action offers Pep Guardiola’s side the chance to remain on course for a domestic treble. City head to Leicester hoping to reach only the second semi-final of Guardiola’s 18-month reign after losing in the FA Cup last four against Arsenal in April. The League Cup also provides hope of silverware for the teams
 
 
Kaka bids adieu to football, eyes coaching job
Rio de Janeiro: Former Brazilian World Cup champion Kaka announced his retirement as a player on Sunday, suggesting that a management career at his old club AC Milan could be on the cards. “I am preparing to continue in football and to have a different role, but I will no longer be a professional player, an athlete,” the 2007 Ballon d’Or winner told Globo television. “I would like to take part in a club in a role more like...
   
Jurgen Klopp sets sights on top-four finish
Bournemouth: Jurgen Klopp admits Manchester City will be almost impossible to catch at the top of the Premier League, but the Liverpool boss would happily settle for a top-four finish as a lucrative consolation prize. Goals from Philippe Coutinho, Mohamed Salah, Dejan Lovren and Roberto Firmino sent the free-scoring Reds up to fourth place. They are 18 points behind runaway leaders City, but Klopp is happy with his team’s
 
 
Mandanda blunder helps Lyon beat Marseille
Paris: A howler from goalkeeper Steve Mandanda helped Lyon beat fellow European rivals Marseille 2-0 on Sunday and move clear of their opponents in third place in Ligue 1. Visiting keeper Mandanda gifted Nabil Fekir an early opener, before Mariano Diaz headed in the second shortly after half-time. The victory gave Lyon a three-point lead over fourth-placed Marseille and drew them level on points with second-placed Monaco, nine
   
Mourinho won’t give up on catching City
West Bromwich: Jose Mourinho insisted Manchester United will not give up on the Premier League title race after his side cut Manchester City’s lead back to 11 points. Mourinho’s side won 2-1 at West Bromwich Albion on Sunday with goals from Romelu Lukaku and Jesse Lingard before Gareth Barry replied for the hosts. And Mourinho is adamant United will keep going until the end of the season despite their Manchester rivals’ huge
 
 
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